A few people reached out to me in the last couples of months, seeing things that I wasn’t sure were being exuded through my behavior. I have something. That something, not quite sure what to identify as of yet, is an aura that makes people want to move, do, and be. I’m aware of it, but most of the time I admittedly dwindled it down, because I fear people getting upset and uncomfortable. I carry myself a certain kind of way. It’s not something I consciously do, it just happens. A regal attitude that comes from training my mind, “I am beautiful and I do deserve the best, therefore I am”, a mantra I developed over the years of transforming from just plain I’esha to I’esha GaptoothDiva. I own it, and now I want people just like me, who once felt inferior to own their as well. I want to be a service to my community and motivate women, young and old, to never listen to the background noise of people calling you out your name and saying what you should do or be, but that internal voice of God. That feeling inside that you were loved before you knew what love was, that your destiny is bigger than you can ever imagine and if you just reach for it, you will eventually touch circumstances that will blow your mind. I have that now, and it’s my life’s dream to make other people feel that exact way. The grace of God and love of oneself and others is so unimaginable; I yearn to reach so many before it’s all said and done.
A few months ago, talking about this very passion led to me developing another internet radio show with a friend of mine, Daitron Winston (RVALien). However, he informed me about some adversity that I never realized existed. I prayed on it and I kept it moving, I knew this was a journey with purpose and God was going to make it with us. Despite a few hiccups and some “internet thugging”, I still maintain that I wish the best for all people. I truly believe that everyone has a voice, what you use it for is your business, but my overall mission is anointed.
I’m excited to introduce R3 Radio: Real Ratchet & Raw, because our show touches on those very perspectives. You have the truth, a real way of looking at life, culture, and our circumstances. You also have the raw way of dealing with it, no love, and no heart, just black & white. In addition, because it sells and is so prevalent in our community, people are floating toward the ratchet because it’s easier and more popular right now. I pride myself on never selling out, so I wanted a show that celebrated that perspective of keeping things wholesome but entertaining.Down the line, I want my kids to be proud of my behavior and the things I discussed, so I don’t call women “b*tches”, I don’t disrespect people because its funny, I truly keep it love and awesomeness, because that’s what I want the world to return back to me. Daitron feels the same way. So tonight at 9pm thanks to Soul Cypher Productions, we deliver that to you every week. I’m so excited!
With the radio show, the clothing, modeling, and writing, what else, could I add to my plate? Well, someone saw something in me and felt other people should see it as well. I praise God for the moves He is making because motivation came from an unlikely source. Someone that I have always admired and thought was very hard working, Joe’I Chancellor will be executive producing my very own show on Comcast 95 / Verizon 36 this Fall, October 2nd 2013. The GaptoothDiva Show will highlight issues that either I believe we shy away from or we downright don’t understand. Again, this venture will be on the positive tip, but with lots of entertainment and fun. Women need to see exactly what we are doing to each other, how we break our own gender down but expect respect from men. It’s a contagion of disrespect to each other and ourselves, and I’m on a mission to change that by any means necessary. I hope you all tune in for that as well, because it’s going to be an experience.
I had the pleasure of going on the Joe’i Chancellor Special Edition show with her this past Friday. She is funny and I enjoyed myself so much. It made me see that although a lot of detail goes into it, it really is an easy thing to do, I’m excited to jump right in and get to work. Because Joe’i and I discuss issues with women regularly, I know that I’m not alone in feeling that there is genuine disconnect. If no one tries to fight this issue and bring solutions to the table, then we will never overcome any obstacles and will forever be doomed to warring with one another rather embracing each other. I don’t want my children to grow up in a world where women hate each other. I don’t want to live in one either. Therefore, with these new projects, I plan to shed light on these issues and more, bringing positivism back to your media and in your hearts.
We Start Taping for The GaptoothDiva Show next month, so be on the lookout for more details on that as well. We are rolling here… God got the wheel… let’s ride.
For more of the Baddest Creative Motivation, follow and support me @GaptoothDiva
Every Week GaptoothDiva.com wants to feature beautiful, stylish, and marvelous people with awesome personalities. It’s our pleasure to highlight our supporters and just how incredibly unique they are. Check out the following individual and connect with them online. We’re building a community of like-minded people who want to celebrate distinctiveness and diversity. We are the Baddest Creative Motivation!
Today’s awesome style and personality belong to:
This is Nicolette but she also goes by Nikki or Nikki Billie Jean. She got the name Nikki Billie Jean from my first name “Nicolette” and from the well-known song “Billie Jean” by the King of Pop Michael Jackson.
“I decided to call myself Nikki Billie Jean because music is my first love. My dad was a DJ and I always grew up in a house surrounded by music. I also played the piano for 10 years and I also want to become a DJ.”
Music has also had big influence on her life and Michael Jackson is a huge inspiration to music.
Nikki says, “Michael Jackson is also a huge inspiration in general. He was a musical genius, broke world records and gave back to the community. He inspires me to go above and beyond.”
Nikki explains, “I love fashion. I love every aspect of it; from the clothes to photography and from runway to magazines/media. The 80s and 90s era inspires my style; everything from my childhood, to the music, to the bright colors and fashion.”
She always wears vibrant and colorful clothing. Many clothes during the 80s and 90s era had structure and shapes. Many clothes during this time were also very bright and colorful.
“I would also consider myself a fashionista because I embody fashion in and out. I love to dress up especially in vintage clothes. I love to wear clothes people do not usually see in a popular store or mall. I go by this popular quote by Yves Saint Laurent: “Fashions Fade, Style Is Eternal””
I absolutely adore her personality and her style. It all truly shines through magnificently. Anyone in love with vintage pieces is definitely someone I want on my team. Great looks Nikki, so excited to see how your dreams flourish in the future. Awesomeness!
Plus Size Beautis (@PSBinc) is a organization here in Virginia dedicated to uplifting and empowering women of all sizes, mostly curvaceous, to love themselves and take care of their God-given temples. This organization, based out of Richmond holds several recruiting sessions throughout the year, participates in community events, and mentors to younger girls ages 8 and up with their subsidiary YLOB (Young Ladies of Beauty). The idea is to uplift the spirits of women, tackle sensitive issues in the plus size community, and mentor members young and old. It’s an opportunity for those full figured, plus size and curvy girls to bond with a sisterhood of like-minded individuals and make a difference in the world around them.
This past weekend, Plus Size Beautis had their first ever Women’s Empowerment Symposium at the Holiday Inn in RVA. The event was well attended by groups of individuals, all seeking the same thing… to be empowered and inspired. Plus Size Beautis did just that, by featuring Motivational Speakers, Inspirational leaders and Coaches like Kita Martin, Cecily Hickman of SassC Creations, and Coach Metra of Love Life Enterprises, LLC. These women took the stage to discuss their experiences while providing a message that everyone could relate to and become encouraged. Plus Size Beautis brought women of diverse backgrounds to speak on subjects relating to self-love, faith, and being true to oneself. Several people in the room admitted to being emotional, captivated, for they understood the dynamic, and could resonate with the speakers and their testimony.
I missed the opportunity to catch the testimony of Ms. Kita Martin, Empowering Women on Purpose. She is a Host, Motivational Speaker, Poet and Writer in the 757 area. Her message related to “B the Best “You” can B!” a mantra eloquently placed on the back of her business card. Make sure you get in touch with her for empowerment and motivation, via email at email@example.com
I caught the message from Cecily Hickman, of SassC Creations . Knowing Cecily to be a kind hearted and gentle spirited entrepreneur, I was intrigued by her testimony at the event. Talking to Plus Size Beauti members and their supporters, Cecily touch on issues regarding her self-esteem and the feelings she had growing up. Like me, Cecily had to busy herself with her passions and creativity to eventually find value in herself, thus discovering a new sense of self-esteem. Cecily encouraged event participants to write strong positive affirmations everyday. She listed individuals who have failed in one aspect of their lives, but went on to succeed beyond what they, themselves may have expected. It was motivating to hear some of my own favorites listed, among them Oprah… solidifying the belief that if you keep going, your dreams can and will come true. I appreciate Cecily sharing those aspects of her life. Her presentation was very inspiring. Please be sure to check out her beauty and styling work, as she specializes in versatility in today’s women with SassC Creations at (804) 822-1236.
During our intermission, prizes and raffles drawing were being conducted. Vendors such as Melanie Wade of Modgyrl Cosmetics were in the building. Modgyrl Melanie was displaying and promoting Plus Size Beautis newest partnership with Modgyrl, their exclusive lippies and glosses. Exodus by Design by Brenda Powell was in the building. Her vendor table was being manned by former WEA Member and Hinton Consulting CEO, Tamera Hinton-Bulger. Plus Size Beautis were also selling their branded t-shirts to supporters and their families as well. Among the other vendors were also Hands On Massage Therapies and Palms of Passion. It was great to see all the PSB members rocking their official PSB white polo shirts, looking fabulous and cohesive for the day’s event.
Last, but definitely not least was acclaimed motivational speaker and life coach, Coach Metra of Love Life Enterprises (sharmetrapittman.com/). Metra shared detailed aspects of her life that I think may have hit home with many people. Her honesty and energized spirit was charismatic and engaging, which made her testimony even more motivating and easy to relate to. What hit home with me the most was the experience of having her daughter tell her that she couldn’t wait to get older, so that she could attend nightclubs like her mother. That is something that I think many women don’t realize being prevalent in their child’s mind. That is not the memories I want my child to have of me, and neither did Coach Metra as she admits during her presentation that that incident was one of the catalyst in transforming her life. As she discusses being a better woman, mother, and wife, it’s the down to earth feeling that I get from her that makes me know; this woman isn’t speaking anything but the truth to me. Her speech “Size Does Matter” isn’t dripping with corny phrases set to entice the curvaceous community at all. Her message speaks to the soul that faith, heart, dreams and communication are the most important aspects to living a fruitful and blessed life. The issues discussed were magnetic in their own way; nevertheless, this was an awesome way to wrap up an extra special event orchestrated by the women of Plus Size Beautis.
“The size of your faith, the size of your heart, the size, of your communication, the size of your dreams. Be Loved, Be blessed, Be You!” – Coach Metra
Ladies, if you are looking to join an organization that supports the plus size community here in Richmond or the 757 area, contact Plus Size Beautis today (http://www.plussizebeautis.org/). Even if you aren’t in Virginia at all, and believe that you can head your own chapter wherever you are, feel free to give them a call. Also, check out volunteer opportunities with YLOB (Young Ladies of Beauty) as well at youngladiesofbeauty.com, because mentoring young women to be amazing grown women, should be a priority for all of us.
I’m excited to see what comes down the pipeline for this group next. I hope their work is blessed and they continue to inspire throughout their journey. It was an awesome event, so the next one is promised to be greater.
Be sure to check out and support…
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From Petersburg Virginia, Bernice McKenzie, wasn’t into fashionable shoes and jewelry growing up. However, after graduating from college and coming into her own, Bernice started to have a fiery eye for style, and was inspired to start her own business. She felt that individuals in the Tri-cities’ area, wore the same jewelry and fashions. Bernice noticed that nothing was unique. It appeared as if everyone was shopping at the same stores for accessories. Bernice wanted her clients to look exceptional, and she had to find jewelry that was stylish and different for diverse women.
“Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”(Psalm 37:4)”
Founded in 2009, D’Zirable Shoes & Accessories LLC (D’Zirable) is a business that aims to keep heads turning. The D’Zirable website states that they offer you the convenience of shopping right from your computer. Customer satisfaction is their top priority and they are committed to offering you the best online shopping experience. Bernice has served customers nationally and internationally.
Although currently there are no shoes available on the site, you can still view an array of unique jewelry pieces and accessories. I must say the prices are very reasonable and the accessories look worth more than the cost, which is very convenient for our fashionistas on an extreme budget.
Bernice obviously stands on quality, in her FAQ’s she answers all your questions and/or concerns about your purchase and promises to provide excellent customer service. I think you should definitely check her out regularly, as she ensures to stay on the latest fashion trends to appeal to a large customer base. I personally love the bracelets, purses, and hats and I think you will, too.
*To have your business or brand featured on GaptoothDiva.com, contact me today.
I feel funny writing this, because as off the chain as I can be at times, people don’t realize that I do strive daily to be a better woman, servant, wife, and mother. It’s hard when you have people provoke you, you allow yourself to be stressed and fazed, or you feel overwhelmed. It’s easier to go crazy, to snap, to drink or smoke, and to lose sight of why you’re here in the first place. However, lately I’m finding that my only sense of peace comes from knowing that I diligently pursued happiness by any means necessary. I’m only content when I believe in my heart that I pleased my Creator in some way by being the best person I could be to the people around me. I keep saying that I’m not perfect; I do have my “ratchet” ways at times, please don’t make me mad. Lol. Nevertheless, growth and progress comes from knowing that as you go all-out to be a better woman on a daily basis, similar to exercise, you will see that “ratchetness” occur in your life less often. I think that’s all God wants anyway, for us to at least try, not judge, but try to be better people individually. So, while we attempt to improve our own lives, hopefully people can be inspired by that and make every effort in their own lives as well.
Earlier I came across 31 Status (http://www.31status.com/) a movement created to show women how to live a Proverbs 31 kind of lifestyle. I found this to be one of the most inspiring things I ever seen. These women collectively decided to motivate other women, to be better women. It’s not a race, a competition, or a battle; it’s a unified pursuit to improve each other. I want something like this in Richmond, Virginia. It seems everyone is hustling to get that business started, trying to blow up, attempting to be the next big thing out of RVA. However, if we collaborate to improve what’s internal, I know for a fact that everything on the outside and all around us, will undoubtedly become better. I’m living proof. Talk to anybody who knew me prior to last year. They’ll say I was off the chain, but as I read more, got closer to God, and I started to value my time and myself, I’m not that woman anymore. Proverbs 31 teaches us to become better individuals. I don’t want to preach to you, because you can read it for yourself. However, you have no idea how much faith plays a big part on the blessings we receive.
1. Faith - A Virtuous Woman serves God with all of her heart, mind, and soul. She seeks His will for her life and follows His ways. (Proverbs 31: 26, Proverbs 31: 29 – 31, Matthew 22: 37, John 14: 15, Psalm 119: 15
2. Marriage – A Virtuous Woman respects her husband. She does him good all the days of her life. She is trustworthy and a helpmeet. (Proverbs 31: 11- 12, Proverbs 31: 23, Proverbs 31: 28, 1 Peter 3, Ephesians 5, Genesis2: 18)
3. Mothering - A Virtuous Woman teaches her children the ways of her Father in heaven. She nurtures her children with the love of Christ, disciplines them with care and wisdom, and trains them in the way they should go. (Proverbs 31: 28, Proverbs 31: 26, Proverbs 22: 6, Deuteronomy 6, Luke 18: 16)
4. Health – A Virtuous Woman cares for her body. She prepares healthy food for her family. (Proverbs 31: 14 – 15, Proverbs 31: 17, 1 Corinthians 6: 19, Genesis 1: 29, Daniel 1, Leviticus 11)
5. Service - A Virtuous Woman serves her husband, her family, her friends, and her neighbors with a gentle and loving spirit. She is charitable. (Proverbs 31: 12, Proverbs 31: 15, Proverbs 31: 20, 1 Corinthians 13: 13)
6. Finances - A Virtuous Woman seeks her husband’s approval before making purchases and spends money wisely. She is careful to purchase quality items which her family needs. (Proverbs 31: 14, Proverbs 31: 16, Proverbs 31: 18, 1 Timothy 6: 10, Ephesians 5: 23, Deuteronomy 14: 22, Numbers 18: 26)
7. Industry – A Virtuous Woman works willingly with her hands. She sings praises to God and does not grumble while completing her tasks. (Proverbs 31: 13, Proverbs 31: 16, Proverbs 31: 24, Proverbs 31: 31, Philippians 2: 14)
8. Homemaking – A Virtuous Woman is a homemaker. She creates an inviting atmosphere of warmth and love for her family and guests. She uses hospitality to minister to those around her. (Proverbs 31: 15, Proverbs 31: 20 – 22, Proverbs 31: 27, Titus 2: 5, 1 Peter 4: 9, Hebrews 13: 2)
9. Time - A Virtuous Woman uses her time wisely. She works diligently to complete her daily tasks. She does not spend time dwelling on those things that do not please the Lord. (Proverbs 31: 13, Proverbs 31: 19, Proverbs 31: 27, Ecclesiastes 3, Proverbs 16: 9, Philippians 4:8 )
10. Beauty – A Virtuous Woman is a woman of worth and beauty. She has the inner beauty that only comes from Christ. She uses her creativity and sense of style to create beauty in her life and the lives of her loved ones. (Proverbs 31: 10Proverbs 31: 21 – 22, Proverbs 31: 24 -25, Isaiah 61: 10, 1 Timothy 2: 9, 1 Peter 3: 1 – 6)
Now which one of you wouldn’t want to be this type of woman?
Exactly! I’m working on trying to inspire myself and other women to be more of an example for other women. People will get angry and say we’re stuck up and bourgeois (bougey) but we know whom we are. Inspiration can come in all forms, so as people talk crazy about for living as if we are worth more and we’re blessed, they’ll eventually start to conform and see that blessings are coming our way. Therefore, they will begin to convert in the Proverbs 31 type of woman as well.
I’m excited to go on this journey and allow you to rock with me. No judgement! We are imperfect human beings, but our love and desire to please God is unyielding.
Love and Awesomeness,
I’esha GaptoothDiva Hornes
For more of The Baddest Creative Motivation, follow me @GaptoothDiva
You know I love you. I really do. To love you means that I’m going to keep it real with you always and forever. I felt compelled to speak candidly about some of the behavior that a few of you have thrown out there, and the audacity that some of you have. Don’t be mad, but just heed to what I’m saying. I don’t want to attack you, but I do need to let you know that ya’ll have been tripping, lost your minds, and are about to get your feelings hurt. I don’t want that, so I want to just give you a heads up before the ish hits the fan tomorrow. Therefore, here is my love to you:
Valentines Day (or at least that feeling of love, compassion, and romance) is supposed to be something you experience all year round. If your boo thang, man/woman, significant other, or lover only shows you romance on this one day or somewhere around it… you have a loser on your hands.
Don’t stress about the flowers because they die. The candy turns into feces down the line. The card will end up in the trash. The jewelry, you may keep (especially if its real), but you’ll always want bigger, brighter and better. It’s about the act of romance, not the money spent. Don’t dog somebody out because he/she can’t afford to buy you something.
The Valentine’s Day holiday is for show! It’s commercialized and gaudy, we are expected to take pics and post all of our wonderful gifts to employ other people to buy for their loved ones. The dollar store is about to make a large profit, I promise you.
If you can’t cook or at least feed your significant other, you don’t deserve anything. So don’t ask!
If you never worn lingerie before, don’t act brand new. You were a wack a** girlfriend/wife/baby momma all year, don’t turn around tomorrow with your hand out!
Tell your man, he should also buy his daughter something. A little girl that gets a valentine from her father will think the world of him. Every man she meets will have to match the quality of her dad.
Don’t just sit around waiting on your gifts. Make plans to romance him, massage, candles, dinner, and a gift for him as well. Don’t buy him any boxers, a tie, or socks. Do for him, as you would want him to do for you.
Write poetry; put post-it notes in his lunch bag, his jacket pocket, or his car. Get him just as excited about the evening as you are. He may act tough, but he’ll be thinking about it all day.
Brush up on your skills. Read a book, watch a video, and research something new to shock the heck out of him. Don’t come strolling in all pretty, with the same old Valentine’s Day moves from last year.
I think of Valentine’s Day as the romance new year. It’s a way to start over in the love department. So make a vow to continue the excitement for the rest of the year, not just on holidays. Our rule is: at least three dates a month (2 outside and 1 inside), make love more than you argue in a week’s timeframe, and always kiss hello and goodbye. Show the passion all the time, and February 14th won’t seem like such a big deal.
It’s NOT all about you. Show some love and compassion, too. Confidence, security, compassion, and strength keep a good man. Whining, insecurity, selfishness, and weakness make you look foolish therefore vulnerable to be played. Woman UP!
I felt the need to write this for all of the females that will be sporting their Valentine’s Day gifts and hauls tomorrow, but have been complaining for the last 11 months about the weak dude on the couch, who is lazy and trifling. I also wanted to inspire the women who may not know what to do, but feel it deep inside that just giving him the same sex he got last week, may not be enough. Step outside the box dolls, its beautiful over here.
Happy Valentines Day Ladies!
With Love and Awesomeness,
I’esha GaptoothDiva Hornes
Follow me on Twitter @GaptoothDiva
After doing the Glam Gurl, Inc. Fashion show in Richmond, I was contacted by Sherra and Tiffany Brown about doing a photo shoot in the Maryland/D.C. area, for their fabulous clothing line Ivie Rose. I rocked two of their outfits in the fashion show, so I was totally excited to see more of what they had to offer. I packed up the Hubs and my beauty kit and hit the road.
If you ever been to a fashion photo shoot before, it can be tense. You have to look good, stay looking good, take photos, change clothes, and some more craziness. However, despite all the hard work, everyone made it fun. This group of beautiful women, including the remarkable photographer Marc Wyche, who took those amazing pics at the fashion show, created a stellar team. Among the group was makeup artist and entrepreneur Treya of http://www.treschicmakeupartistry.com from Columbia, Maryland. I’m talking about a true squad of beauty professionals here!
I really enjoyed myself, as I mingled with some incredible people who truly love what they do. Among the group were some funny girls and my fellow models like Zakiya Payne, Erica Wright, Wema Enofe, Aysha, Michele, and Temeka Brown. I thought they were all beautiful and remarkable in their own way, bringing that extra dose of uniqueness that only they could bring to the shoot. Sherra and Tiffany chose a great group of females to wear their clothes and touched on a diverse market of women, and I am honored to be included in that.
Check out the video of my experience and let me know what you think….
A brand new online boutique that offers affordable clothes & jewelry to women of all shapes and sizes visit them at www.ivieroseboutique.com
Make sure to shop Ivie Rose Boutique when you get a chance. There are some magnificent dresses and eclectic prints that I know you’ll adore.
For more of the Baddest Creative Motivation, follow me on twitter @GaptoothDiva
I’ll be honest, with all the things that I’ve been through these past couples of months (baby, health, loss, etc.), I wasn’t too sure if I could make it out to this event. However, because it was Naneen Johnson’s first fashion endeavor with Theresa Flatts, and my love and respect for the plus size community. I rebuked any obstacles that I could foresee, put my big-girl panties on and strutted with the beauties of Glam Gurl, Inc. This fashion show was for the graduates of the Glam Gurl, Inc. modeling school, who paid to be trained and educated on the ins and outs of full-figure modeling.
Even if you’re not interested in being a model, trainings such as these are meant to instill confidence and self-esteem in the participants. It is my hope that all curvaceous women, plus size or full-figured, learn to appreciate their God-given bodies and beauty, and not shy away from life as if they are anything other than amazing. Therefore, when an opportunity like this comes along, where I can support them and promote this, I’m always down for the cause. When I was requested to walk the runway, I paid the baby-sitter and headed out to what was an overall success.
There is a diverse group of women, who all are beautiful and unique in their own way. Modeling with a group like this gives you a sense of community and appreciation with our large community. People assume that most women can’t get along and that models are all narcissist. However, I have never experienced any negativity when modeling with these women. They are some of the most compassionate and genuine people, who will help you in a second. You don’t have to stress about what you bring to the table, because backstage is filled with positive feedback, accolades, and constructive criticism that is only meant to propel you into being the best plus size representative you can be.
I look forward to more of these as the New Year rolls around. If you’re looking to connect with women similar to yourself, learn new ways to carry yourself better as a full figured woman, and to make friends, I definitely suggest opportunities like this. Even if you don’t see yourself as a runway model professionally, it’s still a great experience. They even give love to our little divas, which were showcased as “Glammettes” on the runway. They were cute and showed that you are never too young to learn how to be a great model.
Shout out to Candice Nicole who sang beautifully and looked amazing and to Earl Fleming who can moderate anything and make it exciting. I also give hugs and kisses to Danielle Flatts, who managed all those women behind the scenes from a chair, and did it all with her big precious smile. I love these amazing women.
Glam Gurls, Inc. 2012 Holiday Fashion Show & Model Graduation held in Richmond, Virginia. Coordinated by Naneen Johnson and Danielle Flatts, this event highlighted plus size and full figured models from the DMV area. With Fashions by IvieRose Boutique and Kederescloset, this event was moderated by none other than the renowned Earl Fleming. Bangles and Bling, Nuimages, shasheelegance, Full figured creations, and Tres Chic contributed to this event as well.
Do you love the outfits? Be sure to check out these businesses represented in the show
Full Figured Creations
Bangles and Bling (Virginia Center Commons)
Marc Wyche Photography
Amor Jay Photography
Andre Mosby (D.J. R. Dre)
For more fashion and inspiration, follow me on Twitter @GaptoothDiva
If you’ve been following me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and a bunch of other social media platforms, then you should have seen the post urging all fashionable to report to Artworks on last Friday Night. Leslie Marie, from Doll Factory (IHeartPuckCake.com), decided to throw an event filled with shopping and pampering for you and your dolls. This event was to support Dress for Success Central Virginia, which promotes the economic independence of disadvantaged women by providing professional attire, a network of support and career development tools to help women in work and life. Filled with tables of shoes, clothes, accessories and cosmetics, this event proved to be an excellent addition to Richmond nightlife. Dolls in the City: Beauty Night Out provided patrons with the feel of luxury without the heavy price tag, by giving us the opportunity to shop until we dropped, get spa treatments and makeovers, feast, and socialize with new/old friends. I had so much fun at this event, that I can honestly say, “I really wish I never left”.
Among the vendors that were there, I had an opportunity to chat up a few. I was impressed with their table displays of merchandise and their ability to connect with partygoers rather than just sit behind the table. Shout out to a few of those vendors:
Leslie Marie (Doll Factory) – www.Iheartpuckercake.com
ShesFab – www.ShesFab.com
Ashley Flood – www.amway.com/Ashleyflood
Vanita Baugh (C.U.T.E) – www.cutegirlsrock.com
Christian Crawford (Runway Couture) – www.shoprunwaycouture.com
Christina Foster Jackson (Madelyn & Ruby Jewelry Co.) – www.etsy.com/shop/madelynnruby
Chanel Jackson (K. Milan Mobile Spa) – www.kmilanmobilespa.com
Andrea Daughtry (La Dainta) – www.ladainta.com
Shoeicide – www.shopshoeicide.com
Rashawn Smith-Bolar (PurseSuit of Happiness) – www.pursesuitonline.com
Sonja J. Holt (Coffee Distributor) – www.ogcoffeeceo.com
Raegan Gibson (Sweets & Soirees) – www.sweetsandsoirees.com
I wish I had an opportunity to chat with more, but with all the patrons that attended, I can understand how many vendors were… “Getting that money!” LOL
The décor was excellent, providing the perfect taste of ambiance and fabulousness as we walked around and enjoyed ourselves. Immediately I was prepared to have a great time, not even noticing that the D.J. was late and there was nothing bumping on the speakers. However, when the music did arrive, the tempo of the event hyped up even more, making me want to dance. I laughed with a couple of girlfriends, saying this was the perfect set-up to a long week of working and just what the Doctor ordered. Leslie did amazing!
Style and fashion was definitely evident as RVA fashionista graced the building. Events such as these, give Richmonders an opportunity to not only come fashionable, but creative as well. From Natural and neutrals, to prints and colorful silhouettes, RVA girls know how to bring chic out when they want to and this was the place to do it. A few of the girls that were present mentioned how inspired they get when they come to events like Artisan Café, now with Dolls In the City as another option, they’ll be more inclined to seek out more inspiration and ideas from their peers.
It was an exciting evening, and the host was just as gracious and humble as she could be. As Leslie walked around smiling, you wouldn’t have known the amount of work and pressure that goes into planning and event of this caliber. Just the idea of bringing Richmond women together for a true girls night out, is much more than most people can handle. Nevertheless, the doll did it, hoping for positive vibes and success all the way, and a blessing that wasn’t far from reach. I couldn’t help but be proud, that yet another fabulous female entrepreneur is bringing people together, and promoting other local businesses at the same time. Something that we all know this city needs.
Out of all the trends I spotted, color is still definitely still in play this season among RVA style mavens. Make sure to spice up your fall and winter wear, with bright splashes of jewel tone hues and prints. Don’t be afraid to mix it up and play with different combinations. Something as simple as adding a new lip color to your arsenal, could make a huge difference in any outfit. Consider creative and bold accessories, to make an outfit that is simple (jeans and a t-shirt) into a statement making ensemble for a night out on the town.
Thank you so much to Leslie and all of her dolls, for planning just a fantastic evening of shopping and excellence. A big smooch goes out to whoever decided to put a table of food in the building, very nice touch indeed. The event was superb, proving that anyone can take an idea and make it their own. Dolls in the City is an event made for you and girlfriends to have a good time and do what we all do best, shop for fantastic finds from locally owned businesses who get that uniqueness is a requirement. “Dolls in the City” was an event that gave you the impression of opulence without the feeling of exclusivity, during the night you just feel like one of the girls. If they do it again, I don’t think you want to miss it for the world.
**To see additional photos and footage from this and many more events, be sure to check our fan page at http://www.Facebook.com/GaptoothDivaOnline. “Like” us to get exclusive info on upcoming events and promotions from local and national business owners and events.
This past weekend, I met up with a Facebook friend of mine by the name of Tamera Hinton (Tamera Bulger). She recently held what would be the first Women Entrepreneurs of America meeting in Richmond, Virginia. This function was held at Mimi Café on West Broad Street, a restaurant I hear is good (however, we didn’t eat). A handful of women came to find out more about the organization, Women Entrepreneurs of America, Inc. and how they could possibly become apart of it.
Tamera explained her role in WEA and introduced us to the Yolanda Lamar-Wilder. She described her as, “Yolanda Lamar-Wilder, Founder and National President, founded WEA, Inc. in November 2002. Mrs. Lamar-Wilder extended an invitation to over 100 women in business and those who want to start their own businesses to come together and discuss social, economic and legislative issues in Greater Cleveland, Ohio and across the nation. After much evaluation and several months of thoughtful planning and documentation, Women Entrepreneurs Of America, Inc. was officially chartered in November 2002. Now a 501(c) (3) nonprofit, membership based women’s organization.”
They currently have several local chapters within the Midwest including, Detroit/Flint, Michigan, Indianapolis, Indiana, Miami/Tampa, Florida, Atlanta, Georgia, Philadelphia, PA., St. Louis, Mo., Chicago, IL., Houston, TX. and now the Founders hometown, Gary, Indiana. Yolanda was placed on speaker phone as we discussed the benefits of the organization and how women like us, all over Virginia, could utilize it to our advantage as well as be of assistance.
The conversation got in depth regarding the benefits of an organization like this, starting from the ground up. In order for it to be successful for Virginia, Tamera would have to enlist at least 10 women. Each of these women would have to agree to pay a membership fee of $65.00 annually, as well as contribute their skills and resources to assisting other women in the organization. The training and workshops would have to be conducted by the members themselves or outsourced from a professional of their choosing. WEA describes their mission as, “The mission of WEA, Inc. is to “empower and support” women, young girls and now men in business, expand and enhance the lives of its membership and the African-American community through quality programs, training, education, volunteerism, and leadership development. Our efforts are in providing resources to “women in transition” and a portion of our proceeds go to the WEA Women in Transitioning Fund for training, workshops and ex-offenders re-entry programs.”
In a time, where everyone with a degree or ambition wants to start their own dream career, people are literally scratching to get out there. We all discussed the rudeness, the frustration, and the negative experiences that come with being an entrepreneur and a woman. It’s not for the faint of heart and as one woman said during the meeting, “you have to have tough skin!” So with Tamera (a new resident of Virginia) trying to bring this organization to Richmond, courage is something to be applauded. Some women fear rejection and ridicule, failing to take their skills and business to the next level, but here is this mother and businesswoman attempting to unite us all, when she barely knows anyone here herself. A huge quality that will aid in the success of the organization is the ability to present connections and resources for those members needing it. If the members pay an annual fee, I’m almost certain they are going to want to see their business progress due in part to becoming a member in the first place. The first to join this project will have to be able to present substantial resources, connections, skills, and knowledge, so that those coming under them will benefit as well.
You could cut the skepticism in the room with a knife. I’m not sure if the resistance was from knowing there isn’t an immediate return on investment or perhaps the knowledge of other female-based organization in the area offering similar payback. Those organizations are already established and functioning in the state. It wasn’t the annually fee for sure, especially since Tamera and Yolanda were offering a special discounted membership fee of $50 (normally $65) and a gift bag to the ten founding members of the future Virginia Chapter of Women Entrepreneurs of America. By participating in the discount, you would officially become one of the founding members, dedicating your time and labors to ensuring that this chapter is of value to future members.
One woman at the luncheon was the apparent individual not awed, however I couldn’t determine which side of the fence the others stood on. I know for certain that Tamera is definitely persevering and motivated that she can spearhead a Virginia chapter of entrepreneurial woman, all seeking support in the evolution of their ventures. She stated that her idea was to bring women together, once attempting to start a Curly Girl meet-up group in the Richmond Area. However, like most people’s experiences, in Virginia you have to earn their trust, then you earn their support.
I look forward to hearing new developments about this organization, Women Entrepreneurs of America. I really hope to see something positive come from this, because it truly can be a benefit to female business owners in the state. I want to see more of us coming together and collaborating, without the cattiness, unnecessary miscommunications, and “diva” attitudes that seem to perpetuate the stereotype that we’re too much drama. It’s enough limelight and success for us all, and treating each other like the competition or enemy, isn’t going to get us anywhere closer to our goals. We’re all-special and come from unique and diverse backgrounds, instead of battling each other, we should learn from each other and produce better quality results. So many of us try to go against the grain in some fashion to be unique, when we should sometimes try to create an environment of things being smooth.
If you’re interested in joining Women Entrepreneurs of America or getting more information, connect with them at their website http://www.weainc.webs.com/
Remember Tamera and Yolanda are offering a special discounted membership fee of $50 (normally $65) and a gift bag to the ten founding members of the future Virginia Chapter of Women Entrepreneurs of America, so time is of the essence. You can also contact the Member Committee Chair at (888-871-3566) for additional info. Payments online http://www.weainc.webs.com through www.PayPal.com (Account: firstname.lastname@example.org)
I get in my car and drive all around the city, seeing some of the craziest and bizarre things you can imagine. Sometimes I’m in the Southside or Northside of Richmond, and other times I’m in either the Fan/Downtown or the Westend. Either way I turn, there is always these offenders of fashion and straight up common sense, that either need someone to look up to or a swift ass kicking. Often times I don’t even have to go far from my laptop, to feel disgraced. There are people flooding my timeline with their cavalier trashiness, so it’s enough to log off completely. What is going on with the world? Have we given up on common decency and self-respect? Has the age of YOLO (You Only Live Once) really instilled “F*ck everything and kill yourself and your image” into the minds of various generations? I mean… damn! I don’t even talk to my neighbors, I’m ashamed to spend money on my side of town because I’m afraid I’m contributing to the bullshit, and I can’t wipe the “stank face” off as my facial expression until I cross some type of bridge. It’s ratchet… no other description necessary. If you’re having a hard time understanding what I’m referring to, look below. If you or anyone you know, fits into any of these descriptions… I’m sorry…. I’m talking about you.
I’ve been complaining about this since my days as a Social Worker for Social Services. There are clans of people coming into business establishments wearing their nighttime sleepwear. WTF! Why couldn’t you have rolled out of bed, took a shower (washed your face & brushed your teeth), then thrown on a pair of sweats/yoga pants/jeans and a t-shirt vs. coming out with your dingy pajamas and slippers on? Why is it so hard to get out of your pajamas? Especially when it’s after noon and you still haven’t gotten the intentional fortitude to get dressed. That’s just lazy. Some chicks (that’s my way of not calling you out your name) come out with an $80 hairweave all wrapped up in dirty hair scarves, pajamas and slippers on, and seriously having the audacity to expect some form of respect when they go out to handle their “business” during the day… why? You obviously didn’t respect yourself enough to get dressed for your (busy) day, nor did you apply any effort in how you were perceived walking out the door.
I encourage any woman in her right mind to take these individuals to the side and instill some knowledge into them. If you have been mobile with these offenders, you are as much responsible as they are. Say, “Girl! Get Dressed, I’ll Wait.” Then don’t leave the parking lot or front yard until they do. By not tolerating this from friends and family, maybe we can one day abolish this nonsense.
As a plus size woman myself, I’m quite familiar with the slight envy a person may have about certain fashion trends that you want to take part in but can’t. I know first hand how hard it is, to see something you love, but knowing deep inside they don’t make it in your size. That fact alone, does not give us thick and voluptuous human beings the right to squeeze into anything that is not physically made to withstand our God-given curves. You look thirsty. You look stupid. You look desperate for some attention. Modern technology has afforded us a wealth of options that can slenderize our appearance within moderation (i.e., Spanx, girdles, and damn exercise regiment perhaps). However, stuffing our flesh into clothes too small, and letting whatever hangs out… just hang out, makes everyone nauseous and afraid of yeast infection around you. The world doesn’t hate big girls, as many would believe. The world just hates big girls who don’t embrace the fact that they are big, too caught up in thinking they can measure up to a few video vixens and not staying in their lane. Being half-naked doesn’t make your fat more appealing, it just makes it more visible. Stop it! Save the nakedness for a self-appreciation photo shoot or a nude beach, and keep it out the nightclubs and off the bus stops, thank you.
I used to love a good weave and a decent lacefront, believe me when I tell you. I would go out of my way and shop online all day for the perfect hairpiece to free me from having to play in my natural hair every single day. I admit I was being lazy and I wasn’t completely committed to the idea of wearing my natural hair, so far be it from me to judge anyone else. However, there is an epidemic of ratchetness among us, no one is addressing. Women and young girls everywhere choosing to put cheap plastic strands in their hair, wearing ill-fitted wigs and lacefronts in the summer time, and not properly having them applied, it’s all so obvious. Hair professionals everywhere should be pulling these potential clients to the side and recommending some appropriate alternatives to help a sister look good.
I advocate for natural hair now, choosing to wear my TWA (teeny weenie afro) versus subjecting myself to another wig or lacefront, but that’s just me. When I see young girls wearing them, and wearing them wrong, I feel obligated to let them know how dumb they look. You cannot pull it into a ponytail without it being secure on the edges. If it’s nappy on the ends, people do notice. Why anyone would sell you a wig or lacefront is beyond me, but that’s a customer service issue. I just ask that we set a good example for each other. When you have a friend wearing her hairpiece in a way that doesn’t compliment her, why not inform and educate her? Why let the chick walk around looking crazy? If a man notices that your hair game is off, do you really believe that your friends didn’t think so as well? It’s just a matter of wearing what compliments you and not what you think is trendy or hot right now. Believe me lacefronts are no longer trendy. Death to lacefronts!
I sat in the parking lot of the barbershop waiting for my husband to come out. I smelled a familiar aroma coming from the car next to me. I looked to my left and noticed two women in a Buick smoking on what smelled and appeared to be some “sticky icky” (LOL), I just wanted to say that. They were smoking marijuana. Nothing new around these parts, I guess, except in the back seat was a little baby girl unbuckled standing up playing. I was so upset at the site of this that I immediately got out of the car and walked away, not wanting to be in the vicinity any longer. Of course, I took to Twitter and Facebook with my rant, hoping that someone could shed light on this ratchetness. Many people agreed that it was foolish ghetto behavior and the culprits should have been jailed. They even drove off as we were leaving, parallel to our car just driving and puffing away like everything was cool and we lived in Amsterdam. Trash! Outside I was fuming and praying they got home safely with the child, but inside I rather wanted those chicks locked up and taught a lesson.
Why smoke in front of your kids? Why pull out whatever it is that eases your nerves and light up in front of the seeds you raised and brought into this world? We wonder why kids act up and behave badly, never thinking that some of their behavior is a reflection of what they see from us. People that smoke in front of their kids should be shot… period. You’re in the car (close proximity) and you don’t once think that maybe this is getting into my child? God forbid anyone gives your child a cigarette or bag of weed; you would go off and want them killed. Nevertheless, you spark your ish in their face and want someone to give you flowers on mothers/fathers day, get the f*ck out of town! I don’t get it, and probably never will. However, believe me when I say, you can’t care about their health if you do some mess like that, you just can’t.
I have a problem with cursing, like anyone with passion and the balls to say what they feel. I have to catch myself often, especially when I’m around certain people, because unlike some… I think about the feelings of others. Nowadays, I wouldn’t want anyone to be uncomfortable because of my language (I never used to give a… well you know), so I use my education and extensive vocabulary to convey my feelings like modern ordinary individuals. However, you have those bad apples that can’t help but to say some of the dirtiest words anywhere they please, even in public places, places of business, or sometimes in front of their children. No judgment, it’s just an observation.
What makes me mad is the females that claim to be your friend and love you, but call you “Bitch” in every other sentence. What is your problem? Are you mad? How would I know if you’re mad at me, if you call me “Bitch” all the time? It’s just too much. “Bitch, you crazy”“, “You’re a stupid Bitch!”, “I’m a real Bitch!”, and the funniest “They better show this Bitch some respect!” WTF! Are you serious?
I can’t roll with you if that’s how you conduct yourself. You sound drunk. I think it’s perfectly fine, to correct someone (especially a new friend) and let them know that you will not tolerate that nonsense. An off-color joke every now and then is not a problem, but if you answer your phone right before church with a “What’s up Bitch!” I’m ending the friendship.
We talk about current events and you’re not interested. We discuss the fate of the city and try to get residence together for a cause or higher purpose, but you decline and sleep half the day away. We offer family friendly events for you to enjoy, but if there is no liquor, you’re not coming out. What is wrong with people? The Club has taken all your interest. I see events that say about 50 people will attend when it’s about a charity or cause, its non-hip hop related, or is more subtle and professional. However “Twerk Something Tuesdays” and “Bootie Shorts and Stiletto Saturdays” has 90% of my followers in attendance.
Chicks rather get half-naked and drunk than to sit through a poetry reading, a book signing, a play or showcase, or a networking event. They will leave their kids at home by themselves, to follow the latest “baller” somewhere and use their government assistance checks to buy everything they need to get there. It’s craziness. You sitting at home all Saturday in your pajamas, leave out late afternoon to shop at Rainbow to find an outfit, just to be wasted in the club with your beer belly out. Stop It!
There are other options in nightlife than the nightclub. If you really looking for a man, that should be the last place you look… dummy. You want substance, than you have to go where substance is. Any man trying to get at you in the club is hoping you are too drunk to realize that he just wants to get in those drawers (or lack there of, since some of you don’t wear any). Stop allowing the club to be the go-to destination every single weekend. That lifestyle will only dry you out and make you old quicker. I know some of you think that being young means you are supposed to be there all the time, but that is not true. Save yourself, your wallet and your dignity and find more quality things to do with the girls.
Gossip Magazines and Blogs, Hood Stories and Literature, Fashion and Hair Magazines… you name it, we all have our preferences. Nevertheless, a good advice column, self-help or self-improvement book, an article about family, health, current events, relationships, cooking, hobbies, etc. could all be great additions to your reading list as well. Rather than tuning in immediately at 8pm for the latest episode of “Housewives and Ex-Girlfriends” why not catch that later and read about new ways to introduce romance into your relationship, or better alternatives to talking to your children about sex and drugs, or maybe even how to start a business.
It’s important to me as an individual, that I not always get my information funneled to me through my timeline and the grapevine, but through my own research. It’s too many females who do not know how to read an application and complete it, but they can talk about everything on reality television. We have to do better. Education doesn’t always have to be paid for and given to you through the form of a degree these days. There are plenty of capable, intelligent people, who are self-taught through their own efforts. Nowadays, there is no excuse for not knowing about yourself and the world around you.
It’s a shame more of us aren’t taking it upon ourselves to forgo the latest gossip book and show, and reading about our passions and future ambitions. We would be a lot further.
This final one always intrigued me. It seems every hood chick in the world uses social media to follow her enemies, stalk them, and then report on their online behavior. They spend all day sending cryptic messages about how that particular person “Really doesn’t want none” and “people better start saying what’s on their minds”, but you never know to whom she is referring to. From song lyrics out of nowhere, to apparent arguments with their baby daddy’s, it seems like our timelines are filled with misspelled rants of a ghetto “These Are Our Lives”.
Explain to me how someone can go from gospel videos and bible quotes Monday Thru Thursday, but then on Friday pictures of liquor and rants about “he ain’t hitting it right”. I mean… c’mon! Where do they do that? Social media is about sharing information and connecting with people, not just posting your baby to get likes, and then everything else is pictures of you in a seedy ass nightclub with a bodycon dress on. If you don’t like someone then unfollow them, stop following people just to know what’s going in their lives. It’s pathetic. How can you in your right mind feel comfortable talking about people that you choose to connect to online, you look foolish. When someone says they don’t like someone or can’t stand someone, nowadays to check the validity of what their saying, I check to see with whom they are friends with online. Most of the time they are connected to that individual online. They are just waiting and watching for their next move. If you stop dealing with me and don’t like me, I employ you to please stop following me… it’s only going to make you mad.
I know that if you’re reading this, you’re probably not the offenders that I’m referring to (if you are than you should be quite inspired to change). However, I think that by being motivators, inspirers, and pillars in our community, we have a moral obligation to touch as many lives as we can… as much as we can. If you know someone like this, give him or her a helpful word of encouragement or a smack in the back of the head, whatever works. Let’s just make a difference… one ratchet ass person at a time.
Follow me on Twitter @GaptoothDiva https://www.twitter.com/GaptoothDiva
Obviously some of us are tuning in, because the beautiful women of VH1’s Basketball Wives keep getting a new season and being paid. Shaunie O’Neal doesn’t look like she is starving, so as much as we may complain; some women have decided to run almost religiously to the VH1 channel weekly. Whether it’s to watch their insanely beautiful fashion style or to laugh and enjoy their bickering and catfights, women all over the country have made their decision about this reality series, good or bad.
I will be the first to admit that I watch the show. It’s not for what you think, though. Although the cattiness, squabbling, and tedious arguments can be slightly entertaining (whom am I kidding, that mess is down right hilarious!), I watch because I believe there is a lesson to be learned from it all. Normally, I’m always looking for positive inspiration behind everything. However, you can find some motivation behind the stupid negative things people do as well. It’s what you take from the situations that determine its worth.
I know that when I watch the show there are several things I walk away with, that I can use in my everyday life. It’s less about how to hurl myself across the table barefoot, while not letting my vagina show on television, and more about being a better beautiful black woman. I know that sounds crazy, considering all the negative responses on the wire about these chicks. However, unlike Star Jones, I think I’m willing to look at this from all angles. What these women do and say, are always two different things. As we were taught when we were younger, actions speak louder than words. If we take the actions displayed on television (whether edited or not, they did it) and break it down, there are secret lessons to be learned.
Evelyn vs. Jennifer – We’ve all had those friendships, where you and another chick were super tight. Something may have happened (most of the time dealing with a lack of communication) and you have a falling out. The one that is hurting the most will usually be the most vocal about the split. I’ve been that chick, not proud of it, but I have. I will tell anybody who was within a few feet of our connection what went down, most often trying to see if I was justified in being so angry. Some people will stir the pot and some will keep their opinions to themselves. Either way, you can bet your spiked earrings that they’re going to go a run back to the other party to spill the beans. Now the fire is turning into an inferno and you have to save face. Every time you see her, you’re more upset because of what once was, and you can’t take it. You start to get petty and vindictive, and eventually a separated friendship turns into an all out battle.
Motivation: Jennifer showed signs of moving on, which obviously made Evelyn even more upset. She can’t stop bringing her up in every episode, the people around her can’t either. Evelyn is getting married and her best friend is not even in the picture, which would hurt any chick. However, instead of being a woman and confronting these feelings, she is playing hard and stubborn. Jennifer asked the ultimate question “Other than a sorry, what else do you want?” Sometimes, even we don’t know. Speak up and stop acting gangster all the time. You can be a strong woman and show that you have feelings for your friends.
Susie vs. Kenya – It’s amazing to me how both of these women are beautiful in their own unique way (say what you want), but they somehow can’t find that little thing called self-esteem. They say and do some of the dumbest stuff, to be accepted by a couple of women who constantly clown them on television. They come across as being goofy, naïve, and often times starving for the love and admiration of the “popular girls”, instead of trying to make their own path. Royce may have her child-like ways; however, I no longer see her trying to fit in with the clique. Susie thinks Kenya is crazy, but she herself suffers from the thirst. By playing both sides more often than I can count, these two have proven that being accepted isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. You’re still a joke to everyone and you’re only postponing the inevitable. They still are cursed out, threatened, and picked on. They are too grown for that. You see what happened to that other chick that lasted one season.
Motivation: Be yourself regardless! If they don’t like you now, they won’t like you later, because the truth will always come to light. Who you really are can’t be hidden for long. Most importantly, when you are a strong black woman, that high school nonsense is just that. Stop trying to be accepted into every group of pretty girls by any means necessary. What’s the point of jumping through all those hurdles, only to look like a follower falling on her face in the end? If you’re smart, you can start your own group, where the women don’t get glasses thrown at them or talked about behind their backs.
Jennifer vs. Evelyn and Nia – Jennifer has been accused of being “bougie” and acting like “her sh*t doesn’t stink”. This was only brought to light when Evelyn and Jen stopped being friends. I don’t believe I ever heard Evelyn refer to her as “bougie” when they were hanging close and cliqued up. Nevertheless, Jennifer is so uppity now, with her new friends, and seriously acting “Hollywood”. Whatever! As I mentioned before, these are all symptoms of a friend scorned. However, what kills me is that because Jen isn’t yelling at the top of her lungs, starting fights at every lunch gathering, and hurling furniture at people, she comes across as being “bougie” even more. Why? The girl doesn’t have to fight at the drop of a hat, because someone else is threatened by her presence. Jennifer was right in saying she makes money with her brand using her face and her looks. What reason would she have to justify getting into a physical altercation with either Evelyn or her assistant Nia, besides her not being in control of her emotions like these women?
Motivation: I can speak on this whole heartedly, because I used to be this chick. You’re mad and you want to get it out. Words will make you sound weak, so you want to fight. However, every girl that doesn’t want to fight you isn’t “bougie” or classified as weak, she’s grown. Grown women don’t fight. If you can’t communicate your feelings without jumping across the table, then you are weaker than the person who is trying to avoid the confrontation is. It’s just not worth it.
Tami – Tami is probably my favorite, although she comes off as having her bullying and instigating ways as well. She was also the one that stated that it was in fact the producers fault, that the women were portrayed to look malicious and confrontational. I don’t agree with that. I think if you do a number of things, and only part of it was shown… you still did that part. So if Tami comes across as a bully right along with Evelyn for only ten percent of the show, that is still your ten percent contribution to your everlasting legacy on television. Tami discussed some very personal things on the air, which I was able to identify with. The fact that she had to be tough and hard most of her life, also allows us to see where all that anger was coming from. However, I totally believe she would have been more of an asset to us all, had she dealt with those issues before she came on. She has a strong opinion and even stronger personality. I believe with the anger aside, she could have been a pinnacle to steer this hot mess into a much more positive direction. I wouldn’t want to take anything away from her work in the community, especially with the young girls. Nevertheless, I wonder what those girls and their mothers think about her behavior on the show. She jokes on the girls, she engages in threats and she started being the big bad ass from the jump. Is it fear or is it respect? She has come a long way from being the butt of jokes by the girls, who described her as being rough around the edges, to being one of them now. However, with this remarkable transformation, should come some responsibility to set an example that all these women aren’t as ratchet as television would make them seem.
Motivation: Get therapy, seek help, and sort out your issues before jumping into the spotlight. I’ve had health issues while dealing with my own internal demons while being on a proverbial stage of people watching me. Not at the capacity of Tami, but I still would have been better off getting myself together first. Tami’s health issues are not something to take lightly, and with all the craziness from the show, I just pray that she learns she doesn’t need the stress for a check. Sometimes being a popular woman and being famous, needs to take a backstage to taking care of you. What’s for you is already yours; you don’t need to force it.
Shaunie vs. Everyone – Let’s break this down. Remember in an earlier episode this season, everyone gave a huge toast to Shaunie, for their large paychecks. Well that is because, she is the HBIC. Yes people, because of Shaunie and her skillful business savvy, she is able to capitalize on all of this fancy, fashion-forward, drama filled, girl on girl warfare. Now does she ever get in a dispute with anyone? Never! Why would they? If you signed my check, I wouldn’t be able to find a problem with you either. Any woman that did, either is removed or put somewhere else. That is a boss lady for you. However, she is hardly on the show. When she is, it’s to usher the other women from an upcoming ass kicking. She does do her share of instigating, but I believe it’s to find a resolution rather than to get the juice like Tami. When they showed her segment with her daughter on her birthday, I found that to be the most heart-warming part of the show. Was it why we watched, hell no, but it was nice to see a softer side of the show for once. Some described her and the new Royce as boring. All of this is due to these two women not bickering, fighting, throwing jabs, or lashing out on everyone else. If that’s boring, what’s wrong with that? Kesha is the same way. She is constantly surprised by the way the other women act as if she never watched an episode. Girl, please! The three of them are all classified as boring by the majority, and most of the time never the ones to boast up on anyone for any reason. I hope that the fans blood thirst, won’t make them change their ways.
Motivation: It’s ok to be boring and drama-less. Often as women, we are always looking for some sort of excitement or thrill out of life and in our relationships. Even if that thrill or excitement comes from drama, as long as we come out winning in the end, we’ll settle for that. It’s not enough to have a sense of normalcy, but we live to stir up controversy and to get the eyes pointed at us. As a reformed “drama queen” myself, it was easier for me to find something to jump up about rather than just fall back and live peacefully. Often we think that by beefing with such and such, having a chaotic relationship or a life-altering situation will make us feel more alive, instead of enjoying what we have and keeping our names out of people’s mouths. We all don’t live on reality television, so we don’t need to spark the ratings in order to be successful. As regular women, it is ok to step back and just enjoy the blessings we have. Boring is not a bad business decision. You can still be a boss and not have a bunch of drama drown your brand or your name.
6. Be a good friend – Say what you need to, to your friends first. Don’t talk about them behind their backs or judge them to the public. They should trust that you would keep it one hundred at all times, even if they don’t like what you have to say.
7. If you don’t like someone, then deal with it – Sometimes you will find yourself around people you don’t care for. This is called the Earth. You can’t fight every single person that you don’t agree with. Learn to coexist.
8. Your real friends don’t urge you to fight – They also don’t put you into situations where they know that you will fight and sit back and watch what happens. You should be able to retain your other friends without them constantly trying to bring two squabbling people together. It never ends well and it’s only for their entertainment.
9. Sometimes the loudest in the room is the weakest in the room – Under all that yelling, anger, and aggressiveness is a little girl crying for a hug and some security. Confident grown women don’t act like that. Even the hottest and sexiest chicks need someone to say they’re pretty, so don’t stress. It’s a cry for attention and validation, it’s not up to you to fix. Just pick up your clutch, shades, and phone and just walk away.
10. Never be intimidated – we all bleed, piss, and move our bowels. We are human. I don’t care how long someone has been around or how popular he or she is, never be so star struck and thirsty that you take anything from anyone. Stand up for yourself and gain the respect of a person. Not by fighting or threats, but by showing that you won’t tolerate the bullsh*t by not delivering it. People will test you, but it is best to nip that in the bud from the beginning, then to let things fester. Tell people where you stand without hesitation, and learn to accept others who have not matured quite as much as you have. By your example, they should eventually fall in line or forever be inadequate.
Hopefully, the next time you enjoy the fire of some of your favorite reality shows, you can learn something from the behavior of the characters, regardless if it’s good or bad. It’s easier to judge from your living room couch, while these people put their lives on the table, but if you don’t get a lesson from what you see than you should just go read a book. Read a book anyway, however I’m just saying. It’s entertaining, but should be informative as well. You shouldn’t aspire to look like them or just dress like them, but to have a better quality of life than they do, aside from the money. Now that’s real motivation.
Only because I’ve been through it and I know what it looks like, can I feel comfortable enough to put this out there. It’s shameful, no way around it. The characters that engage in behavior such as this should be banned from utilizing such an extraordinary tool as social media. When we were in high school, we got mad at the things people said and retaliated. When we were in high school, we were children.
When you post your thoughts, ideas, music, projects, and pictures online, you are asking people to respond and comment. As a woman who has been doing this for quite some time, I know how disheartening it can be to get negative feedback on something I’ve work on. I know how frustrating it is to have someone, who doesn’t even know you, tell you that you are ugly. However, I can’t go out and beat a bunch of people up, when I put myself in the situation to be judged. I can’t spend my days commenting and bickering with every single person who attacks me with his or her irrelevant post daily. I’m grown. If I’m truly busy, then those comments are to be expected and I should “put my big girl draws on” and deal with it.
When people, especially black women get into Facebook and Twitter beefs with each other, it’s disgusting! Yes, you want to get your point across. Yes, you want to prove that you are right and the other person is wrong. It will cost you your self-respect, your reputation, and your sanity. Most of the time, people can tell whose the irrational one with something to prove, if you just shut up and let that crazy bird chirp. It’s a lose-lose situation, leading to nothing but childish banter that we shouldn’t have time for.
I get my respect from those that know my intentions and respect my grind. I don’t assume that every person who clicks follow is truly a member of my team. I understand that not everything I say may come into agreement with many people in my network. Nevertheless, I expect that if I’m saying things you don’t like, or if you truly don’t like me, that you will be wise enough to click unfollow/unfriend. Don’t be nosey, don’t be cute, and just don’t care. I will say what I want, I will post what I want to share, and if you hate it… do what should come naturally… move on.
When we take ourselves out of that rational and decide to fight online and offline, over mere words, we put ourselves in a position to be foolish. Someone almost pulled me out of character a couple of weeks ago. I was more upset with why she was mad and her reaction to it, then what she was actually saying. I prayed on it, and I decided it was best that I don’t respond. God showed me that I made the right decision, by the amount of emails, Facebook messages, and tweets that said, “You inspired me”, “You are much better than that…”, and “I respect what you do…” I appreciate the support and I will continue to show you what it looks like to be yourself, to be fearless, and to be a motivation to everyone around you. I do this for the love of it, but I do appreciate it when I can affect someone along the way. I wish I could have inspired the young woman to stop and look at how her actions were going to be perceived in the end; however, some people are just too far-gone.
Continue to be who you are and let those who stop that, diminish in the distance
Internet beef is NEVER worth it.
THE BADDEST CREATIVE MOTIVATION!
It kills me when people turn their noses up at “thrifting” (best described as thrift store shopping). If you haven’t done this or haven’t considered it, you have no idea what you are missing. Basically, patrolling the thrift store for unique, creative fashion pieces for your wardrobe, to me is the single most therapeutic thing in the world besides alcohol and prescription drugs (did I just say that) I feel like every fashionista should try it at least once, because it truly test your patience and creativity when it comes to clothes and fashion. The idea is to not look like as if you actually shopped at a thrift store, and to be as fashion forward as you can on a limited budget. As you can see, I’m totally into this, therefore almost forgetting the topic of this review. LOL.
Diversity Thrift and the Gay Community Center of Richmond did it again with their fantastic Don’t Hate, Celebrate Fashion show. The turn out was even bigger this year as they paraded the runway with wonderful pieces styled with the clothes right out of the thrift store, giving me new hope in the thrifting sensation. The outfits were remarkable, eclectic, rocker chic at times, and some were to die for. You all know I’m a size accepting diva with curves, but some leather shorts walked past me on the runway that made me want to shed a few pounds so I could get into them. I was blown away.
Check out the video review here:
For more fashion & motivation, follow me on twitter @GaptoothDiva
This past weekend I was fortunate enough to make it to the exquisite and lovely Pamper Me Pretty Expo, courtesy of Diamonds In the Rough Women Empowering Women Group. This event was all about the women (and a few men) who want to network and connect with the areas local businesses and other like-minded females all looking for happiness, support, and a valid sisterhood they can all be apart of. I was blown away at the vendors because this was no ordinary situation. The caliber of small business vendors and proprietors far exceeded my expectations and I was more intrigued to find out about this group.
I spoke with Galanda Shaw, president and CEO of WEW Diamonds in a Rough and she provided me with a plethora of information to pass along to you. She stated that she was inspired to start the group after having a few bumps in the road from her own past, thinking that at the time she needed the same support and comfort that she aims to provide through this group. It’s more often then I would like to count, that I think about not having that solid sisterhood foundation of women that will empower each other and themselves, so it was refreshing to hear that she has found an outlet for us to do just that. She also stated that because she sees positive things coming down the road for the group, she also feels that it’s important for the WEW group to give back to the community through volunteer work and mentoring as well. Selfless acts like these are what set the typical social groups apart from Women Empowering Women Diamonds in the Rough. I can’t wait to check out more in the future.
As excited as I was to hear about this group, I was more excited to share their information with you. They are currently providing a scholarship every month (I believe) for a lucky potential member to either attend an accredited school or finish a degree program at an accredited school. The stipulations were simple based on our conversation and the website. This current one ends on November 30, 2011. I think a couple of you should jump right on it (just saying), because who do you know is giving out money for you to go to school just like that? I’ll wait…. LOL. For more information on the scholarship opportunity, email WEW Second Chance Scholarship Program – Contact: Meylnda Noel (email@example.com) or Lois William (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Their mission is wonderful, “… to stimulate empowerment in women to live to their fullest potential”.
Their vision is to see women unified and empowered by sharing the belief that they hold the power to create and shape how they live and grow as individuals, all the while encouraging them to release their brilliance back to the universe
If you were thinking like I was, that we work so hard to stay above water that sometimes we forget to nurture our bonds with other women and personally motivate each other to succeed, then this groups sounds like a great fit for you. Don’t feel apprehensive from what I saw, there is a diverse palette of fun, mature, and ambitious women for you to meet. I’m sure you won’t have to worry about finding common interest with anyone of the group members. You’ll find you are in a room of sisters.
Check them out more at http://www.wewrichmond.org
Women Empowering Women ~Diamonds In the Rough~
P.O. Box 71163 Henrico, VA 23255
Valerie J. Lewis Coleman has helped women across the nation find relational fulfillment. With over twenty years of experience in family and relationships, this expert has given advice on various issues including identifying the four types of male hunters, avoiding seventy percent of men who only want the goody box and winning the heart of Mr. Right-For-You. As she assists others with building strong relationships, she shares how she overcame personal struggles and offers proven techniques to help you get off the crazy cycle of relational demise in her bestselling novel THE FORBIDDEN SECRETS OF THE GOODY BOX! To learn more about Valerie, her books and overcoming relational matters, visit ValerieJLColeman.com and PenOfTheWriter.com.
Successful. Beautiful. Intelligent. Yet a satisfying relationship eludes Debra Hampton. At thirty-five years old, she can’t figure out why her philosophy on men—and what they want from women—isn’t working. She’s trapped in a cycle of shattered relationships, until a friend refers her to a relationship guru. After some resistance, Debra finds refuge in the counsel of Doc Reid as he helps her navigate through the storms of rejection and failed love. Once he reveals the error of her ways, will Debra master the forbidden secrets to attract her soul mate or continue to keep love at bay?
Why He Left You for Her – Differences in how men and women communicate, think and act have forged a seemingly impassable canyon between the sexes. In addition, once a person’s heart has been broken, a play-or-get-played mentality could result in busted car windows, stalking and other non-productive means of revenge; thus further expanding the great divide.
Valerie J. Lewis Coleman will openly share her real-life relational challenges with our audience to help them make sound decisions and avoid unnecessary drama. Using humor and wit, she will divulge tips, techniques and suggestions to maneuver through adverse situations and build effective romantic relationships.
The GaptoothDiva Radio audience will enjoy hearing Valerie’s proven advice on
• Three things that lead women to make terrible relationship decisions
• Every man’s private marriage checklist
• A simple two-letter word that makes him pop the question
• Why he just won’t propose
• Little signs that tell her he’s the one
• How to become a “man” whisperer with advice from men that women would be crazy to ignore