Monday, December 13, 2010
Thursday, December 09, 2010
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
Monday, December 06, 2010
Sunday, December 05, 2010
The Birdie on My Shoulder
From the beginning you fought for me
That fight would continue for many years in many forms.
Your strength was always present even when we were apart.
You assured me that whenever I had trouble all I had to do was look on my shoulder
On my shoulder a little bird sat watching – that Red Robin was you.
You watched over me as I spoke my first words, took my first steps and ventured out into the world.
As I ventured into the world you assured me that you would be there, “I’m the little bird on your shoulder” you said.
With every step I’ve taken since I’ve paused to think “What would my little birdie think?”
My birdie said “Reach for the sky, there are no limits if you work hard at it.”
When the ceiling seemed short and I couldn’t see my birdie. You said take your arms, wrap them around you and squeeze.
That ever present hug is what I’m holding on to, because my birdie still watches over me, but she has taken flight and is perched on the right side of God.
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
- Myth of the Welfare Queen - A Pulitzer Prize-Winning Journalist's Portrait of Women on the Line by David Zucchino
- Beating the Odds - Raising Academically Successful Afican American Males by Freeman A. Hrabowski III, Kenneth I. Maton & Geoffrey L. Greif
- Stepping Out With Attitude by Anita Bunkley
- Pimps, Whores and Welfare Brats - From Welfare Cheat to Conservative Messenger, The Autobiography of Star Parker by Star Parker with Lorenzo Benet
- Childhood by Andre' Alexis
- The Twelve Universal Laws of Success by Herbert Harris
- Boys to Men - Maps For The Journey by Greg Alan Williams
- I Was On Time - My Journey From The Negro Leagues To The Majors by Buck O'Neil
- America's Best Kept Secret by James L. Gagan with Robert L. Shook
- How To Raise a Child with a High EQ - A Parent's Guide to Emotional Intelligence by Lawrence E. Shapiro, Ph.D.
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Sunday, November 07, 2010
- Eyes of A Child by Richard North Patterson
- Achieving Your Financial Potential by Scott Kays
- French Silk by Sandra Brown
- Heaven's Price by Sandra Brown
- Disclosure by Michael Crichton
- No Disrespect by Sister Souljah
- Dreamer - A Novel by Charles Johnson
- The Client by John Grisham
- Inside the Magic Kingdom by Tom Connellan
Wednesday, November 03, 2010
Last night was one of those nights when I could not listen because I knew that so much of the rhetoric would be laced in hate and venom. Why so much hate? Well in my opinion it has to do with the "browning" of this country and a fear of loosing control.
The "browning" is not just in the White House, it is the fact that there are more and more minorities in this country, and a lot of people can't handle that! Some minorities included.
But this post is about me supporting my President and why. I support him because I believe that he has the best interests of all Americans when he attempts to shape the policies of this country and because he is a man of character.
It takes a man of strong character to admit that he hasn't satisfied the masses and an even stronger one to once again extend the "olive branch" to his dissenters in an effort to move this country forward. I have not read his statement in its entirety, but this reporting suggests President Obama is once again open to dialogue.
I will begin to watch in a few days when the volume of rhetoric has been reduced to a reasonable level, because it is now time for the Republicans and the Tea Party to play their hand. It's a hand I believe we are all familiar with, but now it is up to the American people to choose between substance and rhetoric. Allegedly the people have spoken and they want to "Change the Course" according to Rep. Boehner, but what is the course and at what cost?
So as not to ramble I will end by restating - I Support President Barack Obama, and it has nothing to do with the color of his skin, but everything to do with the content of his character!
Tuesday, November 02, 2010
In a meeting this morning a co-worker and I discussed the number of schools closed today, but I had no idea it was associated with safety until this afternoon when I asked my sister why she was home. She said no school because of the election and my response was "since when," to which she replied "they started it year before last for safety reasons or something."
This is getting to be a little silly. I listened to a commentary this morning by Jeff Johnson on the Tom Joyner Morning Show and he recounted covering elections in other parts of the world and how in places like Iraq, Africa and Asia election day was a National Holiday. It has never been a National Holiday in the U.S. and to think that it has become a holiday because of fear for the safety of our children is despicable.
Monday, November 01, 2010
Help me purge!
Here is the list:
- Good Peoples by Marcus Major
- The Silent Cradle by Margaret Cuthbert
- Gingersnaps by Delorys Welch-Tyson
- Any Rich Man Will Do by Francis Ray
- Like the First Time by Francis Ray
- Like Breathing, A Novel by Ricc Rollins
- Sins of the Mother, An Alison Young Thriller by Cheryl Saban
- The View From Here by Brian Keith Jackson
- Pride by Lorene Cary
- Singing in the Comeback Choir by Bebe Moore Campbell
Now back to my dilemma - books. I have a three bedroom house, no children and just about every corner and crevice has a book of some sort taking occupancy. I am posting photos of some of the bookcases and piles to illustrate my point.
So how did this start? Well the easy answer is my love for reading. As long as I can remember I have loved reading, language and being taken away through the pages of a book. I can recall as a child being punished and told to go to my room, that is until the day my mother realized that was no punishment! You see I spent those hours reading and engrossing myself in the worlds of everyone from Nancy Drew to Margaret in Judy Blume's classic "God, Are You There, It's Me Margaret."
As the years progressed and my interests were continually piqued I picked up the works of black female authors Toni Cade Bambara, Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, and the trailblazer Zora Neale Hurston. Not wanting the men of the Harlem Renaissance to feel left out I began to read James Baldwin, Richard Wright and Langston Hughes. Spreading my wings into collections of poetry, I became a fan of anything and everything Nikki Giovanni wrote as well as making a point to be in the audience whenever she came to Cleveland. There was even an Eldrige Cleaver novel or two in there. So, the point is that my reading passion continued, took on a slant towards the works of blacks, but the majority was still prominent. There was Dostoevsky and Pasternak along with Shakespeare, Albee and Moliere'. Now I don't mention all of these authors to seem anything more than a lover of language.
The problem with just these few authors is that instead of trekking to the neighborhood library and retrieving these works I headed straight to the local bookstore and purchased book after book. For the life of me I can't recall the names of two of my favorite haunts as a teen - they were small independent bookstores where you could find all sorts of used books. One was on Coventry and the other was on Shaker Square, and how I loved going in and spending hours just browsing the titles. That was heaven on earth! They were small, quaint and smelled old because of the books but I found such warmth in these stores. I would say that Mac's Back on Coventry lends itself to that memory.
Now this obsession with books did not end back in the late 70s and 80s, no it manifested and has reached gargantuan proportions as stated in the opening paragraph - more than 700 titles! No matter how I try to purge myself of books I just can't. I've given away a few titles because I am trying to make myself understand that I most likely will not re-read half of these wonderful books. The problem with that assessment is how can I be certain? What if read a review, or become engaged in a conversation about a work that I know I have/had and go to seek it out for clarity and it's not there! What's a girl to do?
Well this girl has determined she is going to be successful in this endeavor and one way to achieve my goal is to share with others, and to do this on a larger scale. So beginning today I am parting with some of my prized possessions, and you could be a recipient. All you have to do is express an interest in the comments section and I'll send you one of my babies! Remember knowledge is power and we must share the power!
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Monday, July 26, 2010
Monday, July 19, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
- "Sugar" by Bernice L. McFadden's
- "Road Song" - A Memoir" by Natalie Kusz
- "Uptown" by Virginia DeBerry and Donna Grant
- "Tracks" - A Woman's Solo Trek Across 1,700 Miles of Australian Outback" by Robyn Davidson
- "Wildflowers" by lyah beth leflore
- "Children of the Waters" by Carleen Brice
- "Purple Hibiscus" by Chimamande Ngozi Adchie
Wednesday, May 05, 2010
Saturday I had the opportunity to attend PodCamp Cleveland at the Cuyahoga Valley Career Center. For those of you unfamiliar with PodCamp the local organizers Website describes, it as an "UnConference dedicated to podcasting, blogging, video blogging and all things New Media."
Why "UnConference" you may ask? Well while I did not ask anyone, I will say that it is because you are not obligated to attend all or any of the concurring sessions, nor do they expect you to sit through a session that is not particularly appealing to you. This may or may not be true.
Well on to my experience - it was a great day filled with some interesting sessions and great for the wallet - FREE! This was my second PodCamp, and while I believe my first experience held a larger selection of sessions I can say that I interacting with more people this time around. Meeting new people is always a plus.
I was drawn to PodCamp Cleveland primarily because of a session entitled "Death by Bullet Points Words, and Clip Art - Creating Memorable Presentations." To say that presenter Lauri Burkons was good would be an understatement! One of my pet peeves with PowerPoint presentations is the lack of actual presenting. I'm sure you have experienced it, you're in a conference room anxiously awaiting the start of the presentation when you receive a packet of information. As you glance over the packet, the speaker comes forward and proceeds to read verbatim the information you have in your hand. Argh! I walk away asking why didn't they just hand it out and let me read it!
Burkons' presentation centered on effective communication and focusing on the presenter rather than reading a screen. I will not repeat her entire presentation but some keys I walked away with included - treat the preparation of a presentation just as you would any other writing project. Begin the process by brainstorming or freewriting on the topic. Prepare an outline to assist with flow and ultimately with the design of the final product. When presenting be aware of time constraints and don't go over your time limit.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
It was a devastating site to ride down Euclid Avenue this morning and see this historic structure gutted due to fire.Euclid Avenue Congregational Church, has a long history in the City of Cleveland. The church Website states, "Euclid Avenue Congregational Church of the United Church of Christ, an urban church since its beginning in 1843, is a diverse, multiracial and multicultural, Open and Affirming congregation."
Sunday, January 10, 2010
However before listing my planned readings I thought it would be helpful to list the rules of the challenge, so here they are:
- This challenge will run from January 1, 2010 - December 31, 2010
- Crossovers are allowed
- Fiction and nonfiction hard copies or e-books from any genre (no audiobooks)
- Participants should visit different geographical regions in their reading (i.e. not all African American or Afro-Brit or Haitian or any one group representing the diaspora)
- Levels of Participation:
- Novice: commitment to read four (4) books
- Versed: commitment to read eight (8) books
- Scholar: commitment to read twelve (12) books
Most importantly, I usually find myself reading at least two books at a time, so a challenge of 12 should be a no-brainer. Finally, as I stated earlier, part of my motivation aside from increasing the scope of my reading is to use this challenge as a means to keep me writing on a regular basis.
So without further rambling my list of African Diaspora Reading Challenge books are:
Purple Hibiscus by Chimamande Ngozi Adichie is set in Enugu, Nigeria and is the story of 15-year-old Kambili and her life in an abusive household.
Let the Lion Eat the Straw by Ellease Southerland is the story of Abeba Williams. Seeking a way out of poverty, Abeba's mother leaves her in the care of Mamma Hamblesham as she looks for success in NY. Mamma and Abeba bond and develop a routine that is shattered when Abeba's mother returns to take her to the big city.
A Small Place by Jamaica Kincaid offers the reader a view of Kincaid's homeland Antigua from poverty and corruption to the breath taking beauty of this small Caribbean island.
The Great Negro Plot by Mat Johnson is an historic fiction account of the Negro uprising in New York City in 1741.
These works are listed in no certain order, but I can say that Let the Lion Eat Straw will be the final book, because it is the last book scheduled for my book club and that meeting is in December 2010. The Great Negro Plot is also a book club read and I believe it is scheduled for early summer.
I'm really excited about the challenge and the opportunity to widen my reading horizon. Won't you join us? If you are interested click here for details.
Monday, January 04, 2010
One of my goals is to make this space an active, living breathing place that people you and others will be interested in visiting on a regular basis. So, let's hope you find this interesting and will come back for more in the days and weeks ahead.
Another goal is to participate in some very interesting challenges I have come across while perusing the internet. Just today I stopped by Inkygirl:Daily Diversions For Writers where I learned about the 1000 Words A Day Challenge which is similar to NanNoWriMo, but according to Inkygirl is for those of us who start out with a bang and may loose our way. With this challenge if you miss a day, but try again the next day you are still eligible as long as you are actively trying. Even better there is also a 500 Words A Day or 250 Words A Day Challenge. I will work on the 500 Words A Day, what do you think? Want to join me - if so learn more here.
The next challenge on my agenda has to do with my other love - reading. I'm not sure which of my writer idols tweeted about this site, and this challenge but I was very interested to find Brown Girl Speaks and the African Diaspora Reading Challenge. With this challenge I will be able to fulfill two goals at once - read more and write more, because as part of this challenge you have to write a review. Cha-Ching, double the pleasure. To learn more click here.
So with these two goals as well as a plan to redesign this site and post more frequently I should be a very busy woman over the next 361 days!
I hope you will join me on my journey to offer your views, support or just to hang out!
~Til Next Time!
Friday, January 01, 2010
My new year's celebration was a blast! For the third year in a row, the Hubby & I joined friends at a house party! The atmosphere was festive and filled with joy as we ate, drank, danced, laughed and just enjoyed the company of one another!
New this year - I played bartender and what a blast that was. While I'm always pretty observant at gatherings, just sort of people watching, the view from the bar definitely gives you a whole new vantage point.
From the barkeeps stool you can watch and gauge who's drinking just to get a little buzz and who is actually trying to tie one on, and thankfully most of the folks were being sociable last night.
As is true with life, with all good times there will be sadness. I found out this morning that a beloved cousin passed away this morning and is now our own personal ANGEL. I also learned first hand that with death comes life as we welcomed a new member of the family as well this morning. Life in all of it's totality is truly an awesome experience.
As the effects of the first day of the new year settle I am convinced it will be a good one. I'll post tomorrow about some good things to look forward to here on the blog. One of them will be more on books and writing as well as the addition of some other sections. I believe that I will finally utilize this space to delve into reigniting my love of reporting which will include interviews and features on not only books and literature, but also craft related issues and community news.
Join me for the ride, I know it's going to be a good one! Happy New Year!