2021 refused to go away quietly. In a last ditch effort, the year snatched Betty White from us. I used to watch the Golden Girls with my mom as a child. As a curious 7 year old I couldn’t understand why Rose seemed so clueless. It angered me because I felt girls were always shoved in a box and told to stay there. “Don’t ask questions, don’t speak out, don’t point out wrongs, just go along with what you’re told.” As a young black girl in a world constantly telling me to shut up and sit down I wanted Rose to fight back. As I got older and saw Betty White in other acting roles, I understood. She has always fought back but in her own way. I am grateful for her being who she was.
For the past couple of days I debated whether or not to even write about the new year. I feel like I’m fighting the same internal battle I vowed to end several new years ago. But during part of 2020 and 2021 I did a short series of Facebook lives where I spoke my thoughts on current events and internal conflicts I had been working through. These lives were to release the conversations in my mind. I ended my lives with encouragement, more so for myself than for anyone else who may have watched. “Recognize you are dope. Share your dopeness. But be careful who you share your dopeness with because not everyone is equipped to handle it.” This is the encouragement my teenage self needed, so I share it for any who may find comfort in it.
Encouragement is more important now than ever before because the world has grown so desensitized to pain and suffering. Growth and progress requires quiet self-reflection and planning and that is not encouraged much in today’s world of chasing riches and fighting for survival. But during the holidays I came across a decorative piece that was simplistic and to the point: Progress Over Perfection. So instead of writing down an entire to-do list for 2022 I am choosing a theme for this year and progress over perfection is fitting.
May you maintain good health and a keen sense of what is right for you, and defend that firmly. Happy new year and may you create the life you’ve always wanted!
When the pandemic shut the world down last year I felt angry and relieved at the same time. I was angry because I was drafting a plan to cross a few travel plans off of my bucket list. I was relieved because I was challenged to interact more on social media via video. I felt (at the time) that since the world was shutting down, everyone’s forced to stay inside, so nope, can’t do it.
That was my fear speaking loud and clear. Fear had my full attention. The world (as we knew it) was ending, people were stockpiling bleach, toilet paper, soap, spaghetti noodles (but no sauce) and microwavable dinners from the freezer section of the market. 🤦🏾 But fear had me gripped, worrying about whether or not the world was heading into Book of Eli/Mad Max territory. So, streaming live on social media was the least of my concerns… or so I thought.
Chatting on line with a friend about the current state we were in, they casually said “How about you go live and read some of your poetry?” *insert record scratch* What now? In the middle of a pandemic? Read my poetry, on camera? I was shaking in my pajamas at the thought of it. I immediately started to panic. I hadn’t performed any of my poetry live since 2018 and that was at a church’s open mic night event in my neighborhood.
I started to say as much but instead replied with “that scares me.” I hought that would be enough to back them up until I received these words that stuck in my mind like Gorilla Glue, “Face the fear and do it anyway.” A few days after that, I took a deep breath (I was considered an essential worker and still had to report in) and started live streaming during my morning commute. I did this for about 16 weeks before I stopped as I was receiving static from work. Smh.
But as I think back, I had fun. It was scary but I did it anyway. In this digital age I know I will have to return to it, but until then, should there be anyone considering jumping into the live streaming pool (no matter what social platform), give this article a read Learn To Live Stream , you’ll be glad you did. And if this helps, drop a comment below!
I have been following some of what’s been occurring politically these last couple of weeks and I am ashamed of humanity.
While many are still unemployed or grossly underemployed, businesses are receiving thousands to continue to run. Politicians, meanwhile, have debated for months over whether to give people $600 – $2,000 to live on. You can learn all you need to know about a country’s policies based on how they value their women, children and elderly – mainly who are the most devastated groups during economic upheavals.
This pandemic has exposed the financial fallacies ingrained in society. That led me to increase my personal financial plan to be more prepared for any future upheaval. What I fully realized is the lack of financial education available to the children during their formative school years like basic budgeting and balancing a checking account.
One of my goals this year is to assist at least 60 people to understand how to create a budget, balance a checking account and draft a savings plan. That’s 5 people a month. You may be thinking that’s not many people, but many people are ashamed to discuss personal finances. I’d love to be proved wrong though. I also started a virtual bookkeeping business, MBunn Services LLC, where the services I offer include account cleanup, bank reconciliation, tax preparation and notary public services for the Philadelphia, PA area.
If the pandemic and political mayhem has you feeling out of sorts, just know things have the ability to get better. Hey, if you invested in Bitcoin over the last 9 months you have something to smile about. I don’t have Bitcoin but my new 401k isn’t looking too shabby. Set goals and follow through so these public displays of aggression don’t weigh you down.
Many people are suspicious when they hear life insurance. Images of sheisty salesmen similar to the car salesman that will sell you junk at a high price comes to mind more often than not. Before I dispel some of that information I want to share that it’s Life Insurance Awareness Month. I just found out it’s a thing yesterday.
I’m glad it is a thing because we need the facts on life insurance so we can make educated decisions when (not if) we purchase life insurance. Note to the hecklers, life insurance is least expensive when you’re youngandhealthy.
Many people mistakenly purchase life insurance believing they only need enough for burial. When the idea of life insurance came about there was no such thing as funeral expenses. Life insurance was created as an income replacement in the event the husband died unexpectedly. The widow left behind doesn’t have to work and can still manage the household and child(ren) without becoming destitute.
How many of you have insurance on your electronic devices? Why do you insure objects? For those of you with some life insurance: are you fully covered or covered enough to get buried? Would you underinsure your home? Would you underinsure your car? Why would you feel ok with underinsuring your life with too little or no life insurance?
To find out more or to schedule a free consultation comment with your email address.
Have you ever had an opportunity to do something or go somewhere and missed it because you froze in fear? It’s okay, because it happens to the best of us. I’ve had my moments. How I have been getting through some of those moments is asking myself, “How will I feel about myself passing up this opportunity?” Usually the answer to this question spurs me to make a decision and I am usually pleased with the outcome.
This past weekend was one of those moments. I’d found out about the Sistahs In Business Expo, in Philadelphia, on Thursday and according to the ticket site Eventbrite, Friday was the last day to purchase tickets. I was on the fence since the expo was Saturday. Then I saw Vivica Fox was going to be the keynote speaker! I knew not going would bother me like when I missed Gabrielle Union’s AND Jenifer Lewis’ book signings earlier this year. Bam! Decision made. I was going and bringing the little ones with me. This was a once in a lifetime opportunity.
So many entrepreneurs were in the building! It was beautiful and the energy was electric! My children didn’t fully understand the beauty they were submerged in, but as they get older and wiser they will. One of our highlights was not only getting a signed copy of Ms. Vivica A. Fox’s book but pictures with her as well!
Never give up on goals and aspirations you have for yourself. Your future self will thank you for it!
Hello. I haven’t posted sinced NaNoWriMo last year and for good reason. Exhaustion. I needed to decompress from the stress of typing all the words so I can continue to write all the words. Before I go any further, happy new year to you all and I hope you are making everyday count for you. This post is to share what I’ve been up to…
When the New Year comes in we are all flooded with the same “New Year, New You” ads to guilt you into signing up for health clubs, insurance clubs, etc… Me personally, I stopped writing resolutions years ago. They’re usually forgotten by Valentine’s Day anyway. Instead, I think of a few goals I want to accomplish during the new year to improve myself. This year, among my usual take better care of my health goals, I vowed to tackle 2 things I am afraid of and something I have been procrastinating with. I was afraid to knit a pair of socks, afraid to re-enter the realm of spoken word and procrastinating with ending a toxic relationship.
Heh, heh, heh… Growth doesn’t happen overnight. It takes consistent effort. I completed my first pair of knitted socks in January and on February 3rd I recited one of my poems during a podcast interview with Sabreen on Soundcloud, Author Event.
Then on February 9th I attended an open mic night where I performed for the first time in a few years. Along with facing those fears I am pursuing what makes me happy – helping, supporting and promoting others.
With the same heated fervor of the Black Panther release, I strive to reach those who need encouragement through my poetic words. My first collection, Entangled Hearts, is available on amazon.com. My second collection, Reflections, is due to be released later this year. Order your copy of Entangled Hearts and remember to challenge yourself to face your fears. Check them off of your list one by one!
Anyone who follows me on facebook, twitter, or instagram has been inundated with posts about the musician, Crywolf. I discovered his music one day while listening to Pandora and cooking dinner. One song, Home We Made Pt. II, caught my full attention. Then Pandora kept throwing different tracks into the rotation and I was sold.
This past December (after following him across social media) Crywolf posts on facebook that he will be accompanying the group, SAVOY, on tour during January. I quickly scroll through the dates to see whether Philadelphia is one of the stops and sure enough! January 16th at Union Transfer! I squealed like a school girl and made the decision to go no matter what. Then a couple of weeks later what do I find? Crywolf on facebook announcing that he’s giving away a free download of ALL of his music up to his Cataclysm album! BOO-YAH! CHRISTMAS GOODIES! I quickly downloaded the music (it was only available for two days) and shared the post for other Crywolf fans who may be out there and proceded to get my daily Crywolf fix without Pandora’s commercials.
January 16th was a few days ago. I had to come down from my Crywolf high before I could relay to you my experience. Now I am listening to Crywolf as I write this *smiling and nodding to the music* and I want you to know that this was my first music concert ever. I mean EVER! Before the news of the concert reached my eyes I had made a promise to myself to 1) attended a music concert, 2)ride on Amtrak, 3)travel more, 4)live more… So far I have crossed off the first 2 items and we’re not even thirty days into the year yet. But I digress…
I show up to Union Transfer and I am nervous, not knowing what to expect. Especially since I am the only brown face in the line waiting for the venue to open the doors. Once inside, once the music started, that didn’t matter. When Crywolf came out on stage it was like a smooth transition to get closer to the stage and roll with the vibration of the music. I wanted to cry it was… surreal. Feeling the bass in my bones, seeing this musician up close and hearing the songs I listened to repeatedly at home was an amazing experience. At one point in the show his mic went out and he just came to the edge of the stage and asked us to sing with him if we knew the words to his song!
The best part was Crywolf signing stuff and taking pictures with us after his set was done! I am still blown away!
Good morning. *Yawn, stretch, rubs tired eyes* Yesterday my baby girl turned three years old! Her nanna had bought her a pretty pink princess dress with matching princess shoes and she had been waiting patiently (or as patiently as a two year old can) for two months to wear them. “You have to wait until your birthday comes to wear your princess dress,” I had to remind her – at least once a week. Yesterday was the day. She woke up ready. Came downstairs, ate her breakfast and once she finished she dashed back upstairs to put on her princess dress. Princess Yehudi proceeded to enjoy the rest of her birthday in style…
Three years is a long time. And Yehudi has grown – a lot. I didn’t realize how fast she was beginning to develop her own personality so fast. I should have took notes when I was pregnant with her because she had her own mind, even then. In the womb she was bossy. Dictated what I would eat and when. Dominated my sleep patterns and positions. Physically assaulted my ribs from the inside, hahaha. I can laugh now but I wasn’t laughing then. We didn’t want to know her gender until she was born so everyone tried guessing based on the shape and positioning of my stomach. Even strangers waiting at red lights stopped to yell across the street and predict what gender baby I was carrying. She had fun tricking people. She even dictated my delivery.
When I went into labor it was normal for my fifth child. Contractions began speeding up in frequency and intensity while my body aches increased dramatically. By the time we arrived at the hospital I had enough strength to walk in and sit down in the first wheelchair that was within reach. Anticipating the cooling relief of an epidural my daughter played one her final jokes before arriving. While lying on the labor room bed and waiting for my epidural this little lady decides to karate kick my water bag AND dilate my cervix to the full 10 centimeters! Yup, no epidural for me. Then she practically delivered herself because she wasn’t waiting for anybody. Luckily the nurses were there to “catch” her as she, for her final joke before birth, showed me what the ring of fire really meant. Heh, Heh. Again, I can laugh now but I wasn’t laughing then.
She is definitely her own person. And that makes me smile sometimes. Other times it causes mounds of frustration because she doesn’t want to do what she has to do or what she is told to do. I see her laughing and blazing her own trails as a beautiful young woman and I pray I have the fortitude to allow her the flexibility to do so.
Okay, I know we are experiencing global warming and all but this is ridiculous! Sweating after stepping out of a cool shower?! Mother Nature we are extremely sorry that we tampered with your delicate system of balance but can we PLEASE get a slight break? I am asking on behalf of all humanity on the East Coast of the United States.
Okay. Now that I have voiced my plea I can get back to business. Or try to. Honestly, it has been so hot these last few days I was afraid to turn my laptop on for fear of a blackout. I am running two air conditioners in my house (one upstairs for the little ones and one downstairs for the general cooling of the house). I can hear my neighbor’s air conditioners running also. They have one in their basement (go figure that one) and one on their second floor.
During heat waves like this, blackouts are common in Philadelphia. Whole neighborhoods could be left to the mercy of the elements when the power company purposely shuts down certain grids (neighborhood hot spots). I used to know someone who worked for the energy company who gave me that inside tip years ago. Shh! Don’t tell anybody.
This heatwave is the reason why a home with shady trees, near a fresh body of water is on my must get list. Aside from that I really need more space. My children are getting bigger and will need their own rooms soon. I need office space so I can write during the day and stop hiding out in the kitchen at 5:00 in the morning. And I would love for the children to have access to their own grassy playground area in the backyard.
Okay, okay. Enough of my wish list. I need to do the ice bucket challenge before I melt and get back to working on Ego Trippin’. I didn’t forget about Lydia. My brain has been turned a little jello jiggly with the heat but it is supposed to cool down with a thunderstorm later on today. in the meantime I will keep reading what you guys are writing because you guys rock!