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She’s Gotta Have It (Review)

I recently binged watched She’s Gotta Have It, and I must say I was throughly impressed! Having seen the original movie years ago, I knew the premise of the show, but what I didn’t expect was the implementation of so many other social issues like gentrification, back alley butt injections, millennial poverty, anti-catcalling and more. The show was beautifully directed and in true Spike Lee fashion there were random monologues by characters, music perfectly fit with almost every scene, and interesting camera angles.

Spike Lee took his classic film, and updated it making it relatable for millennials everywhere. I think the series can be enjoyable for women and men alike. In all honesty the series was not just about a girl who had three men companions, but much more. While that was a factor, thats was not the sole storyline. Nola Darling, considering herself a  “sex positive, polyamorous, pansexual” leads a life of struggle. She struggles with her relationships with her men, and one woman, she struggles with her art career, she struggles to maintain her teaching job, and she struggles to pay her rent. But, through her struggle, she creates beautiful art, giving great meaning to the term “starving artist.” There is no question of her talent, and thats what stood out to me the most.

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As I watched Nola Darling find her way through the first season of the show, I found myself thinking of another show.  I couldn’t help drawing comparisons between Nola Darling and  Issa from the hit show, Insecure. This past season of Insecure we also watched as Issa struggled with her new life without Lawrence and as she tried to find her way through her self-proclaimed “hoe phase”.  In the case of both women, I have seen so many tweets, memes, and even heard several radio station DJ’s condemning both Issa and Nola Darling for the lives they choose to lead sexually.  While I personally don’t consider either woman a “freak” or any other degrading term I have heard them called, it made me even more aware of the double-standard that is in place when it comes to men and women’s sexual lives.

Both series are well worth the watch. They are relatable and humorous, and will have you questioning society and the world around you! Happy watching! 

What did you think about either of these series? Let me know in the comments! 

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Life Hacks For Grad Students

The end of the semester is near. That generally means one thing, it’s officially crunch-time. The assignments become greater and the due dates seem to be getting closer together. Here are a few tips that may be helpful to you during this busy time!

Don’t procrastinate…Due dates are closer than they appear! Since there is only about a month and some change left of the semester, many assignments are going to be due to colose out the semester. My advice, start working on any and everything. The last thing you want is to be put in a position where you are still typing a paper an hour before it’s due! Especially if it’s due online, those links will close!

Stay organized… Organization is not everyones cup of tea. But, it is certainly helpful when you are juggling multiple classes, possibly a job, family, and a social life. It is easy to overlook assignments or mateirals if you dont stay somewhat organized. Whatever way organization works for you, own it. If your papers are scattered all over, but you know exactly where something is when you need it, thats still organization! 

Eat & Sleep!…\ While these may seem obvious, they’re not. Sometimes when your’re wrapper up in papers, and books you forget to take care of yourself. Or you think I can sleep or eat later. Ladies and gentlemen this is not a key to success. Make sure to give yourself enough food and sleep. Your body needs energy to keep moving and process the information you are giving it. Nobody likes a stressed out sleep deproved hangry person!

Keep pushing and finish the semester out strong! What are your tips or rituals that get you through the semesters? Let me know in the comments!

So…You Hate Your Job?

I often hear people complaining about their jobs. Trust me, I’ve been there as well. Waking up and traveling to a job that you dread. The only thing that keeps you motivated is the paycheck. Sound familiar? If not, that makes my soul smile, if so, I feel you. It happens. But, that does not mean it has to stay that way, and it certainly does not mean you have to accept that. Here are a few quick tips to help you through.

  1. Start your day with motivation and inspiration!– Whether it be a cup of coffee, blasting your favorite artist on your commute, or even listening to a sermon from your favorite pastor, do things that will pump you up! This will keep you from being drained as soon as you walk in the door. If you can keep your energy high, then it will be harder to get it down. Also take the time to do self-care while you are off the clock. Make sure your mental mindset stays in tact. If you dislike your job, where you spend several hours per week, it can be easier to slip into depression.
  2. Ignore negative coworkers!– I know it’s hard, but you have to tune out the complainers and all negativity, including coworkers. They can easily drain you of your good energy and suck you into the negatvity. Before you know it, you will become a complainer as well. They will make it even harder on you to get through your days especially if you are already struggling. So, try to steer clear of the Negative Nancy’s, and when working directly with them, keep it straight business. Once they start to complain either smile and excuse yourself, or drop a positive word here and there. This will usually make them less likely to complain to you, negative people usually only like other negative people.
  3. Keep moving forward!– Just because you may not like your current job, does not mean you have to stay there forever. You can always job-hunt, and look for opportunities that will better suit you. Although thats hard, you may end up finding your dream job eventually. Even working on yourself and gaining more qualifications to make yourself more marketable, is also an excellent way to help you move onto a position you would enjoy more. 

What are some tips you would give someone who hates their job, let’s talk about it in the comments!

 

5 Things for College Students to Remember

August is here. Summer is fading out and fall is pushing in. Gone are the days of beach and swimsuit commercials, they have been replaced with back to school commercials. For those getting ready to start a new semester of college, or even those going away for the very first time, it can be very overwhelming. College brings about a lot of freedom, joined with alot of responsibility. So, here are the most important things I leaned while tacking my undergraduate career.

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Call your parents! I can not stress this one enough. Your parents want to hear from you, and not just when you want money or a care package. My mom and I had awesome conversations while I was a way in school. There was a shift in dynamic, I was no longer just her child, but a responsible adult. I’m not saying call and check-in every day but, at least once a week. Set aside about 20 minutes once a week to call and check-in, let them be involved in your week, and get involved in theirs. That phone call may mean the world to them, because believe me they miss you more than you know. giphy2

Make nice with your professors! Remember in grade school when you made fun of “teacher’s pets?” Well I’m here to tell you, you shouldn’t have. In college it’s not abnormal to have a professor that has no clue who you are. Going to class is not enough! You need to be proactive, get to know your professors. Go to their office hours, discuss assignments, or just pick their brains. Now most would confuse this with sucking up but in all actuality, this is to your advantage. Every professor likes to know that their students are engaged and actually gaining knowledge from their class. Every professor grades differently and looks for different things. Once you get to know their style, I guarantee you will have a much easier time scoring high. You pay tuition for them to help you through the semester, there is absolutely no need for you to struggle. But, you will have some late nights and early mornings, but you can do it! I had one professor that truly gave me a run for my money. In the beginning I could earn no greater than a C on her papers. I had never gotten a C on a paper in my life. I started going to her office hours discussing my papers, learning her layouts and expectations and by the end of the semester earned an A in the class! giphy3

Get Active! Try to become an active part of your college community. I don’t just mean being the life of the campus parties, or being known for the person that can take the most shots, but actually get to know key people on campus. Take time finding the student centers, counseling center, and especially tutoring centers. Utilize all of your resources! Whether it be with a campus job, internship, or joining clubs, get involved. When you graduate you will be looking for jobs. You will also need references and reference letters. Since up to that point you may not have had much work experience, your campus activity will give your future employer an idea of who you are. Sitting in your dorm room listening to music is cool, but you have to get out of your comfort zone sometimes to set yourself a part from the many others who will be graduating with you. In my last semester of college I was working for the university newspaper, held an internship in the Alumni office, and knew all of my professors. They were all good people who in turn did not hesitate to write me reference letters, or anything else I needed when it was time for me to graduate.

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Use your meal plan wisely! In beginning of the semester you generally get a hefty amount of meal plan money. Although, this may differ from university to university, the one thing that’s the same is no one wants to be starving by the end of the semester! So, use your swipes wisely and try not to get in the habit of swiping your friends meals!

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College Will Eventually End! I heard it so many times and I let it go in one ear and out the other, “These are  the best years of your life.” College allows you to be selfish, make decisions, and mistakes. You get the opportunity to learn who you really are outside of your parents. Although this time will come to an end, make the best of it while you have it. Party, hang out, meet new people, take this time to live your authentic life. Once you cross that tassel, it’s nothing but bills and adulthood waiting for you. 

Also, take this time to think about the person you want to be once you graduate. Start considering if you want to go straight to gradute school or to the work force. Don’t wait until the last minute to start your job search. Be proactive! Make time during your last year to mentally prepare for the transition that is up ahead.

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Overall, have fun! Although exams, midterms, and finals seem like corporal punishment, that’s a cakewalk compared to what you will face in the real world. Take this time to learn and grow in your purpose! 

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What is something you wish you knew in college you know now? Or college students, what would you like to know? Let’s talk about it in the comments! 

Spotlight Series: D’Laun Montgomery

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D’Laun Montgomery has always had an eye for fashion. He grew up in the south suburbs of Chicago.  He is the co-owner of fashion boutique Lost and Found.

“I developed a passion for entrepreneurship because of the freedom it would give me… we are our own bosses.” There is a great deal of respect that comes with being a business owner, and a young business owner at that. Montgomery and his partners are definitely earning that respect.

Montgomery met one of his business partners in 2012, they were college roommates. He took interest in his style. “Marc was always at least 2 years ahead of fashion trends, and I admired his fashion sense.” Montgomery went from just admiring, to searching and really diving into the fashion scene.

The boutique has been in operation since November 15, 2015. He has no plans of stopping his train to success. He feels that fashion allows people to express their individualism, and rightly so. He has his future on his mind as he has been strategically moving forward with his business partners. Ultimately, he wants his store to become the standard for all retail. Working for other people did not give him the same satisfction as working for himself, and towards his own goals.

Montgomery has more than present satisfaction in mind, he is aiming toward generational wealth. “I want to start building generational wealth…I don’t have any kids now but I’m putting in 18-19 hours into my business regularly now so I can spend time with my kids later on in life.”

Montgomery’s major influences include Ralph Lauren, Greg Selkoe, Curtis Jackson, and Dame Dash. At just 24 years old he has accomplished so much and is looking to conquer so much more!

You can support him and keep up with all of his exciting upcoming endeavors and information by following him at…

Facebook:
D’Laun Montgomery

Instagram:
@Poppadopolis_

Twitter:
@Poppadopolis_

 

 

Girls Trips: The Good, Bad, & Ugly

Girls Tip was full of #BlackGirlMagic! The movie is centered in New Orleans during Essence Fest, which is the ultimate girls trip! Queen Latifah, Tiffany Haddish, Jada Pinkett-Smith, and Regina Hall assemble to make the perfect story of  sisterhood and friendship. I laughed, almost cried, cheered, and of course I went to see the movie with my girls!

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If you a part of a friend group, you know just how genuine this movie is. Groups of friends can constantly experience ups and downs. Ceratin friends may become closer than others in the group. You sometimes go through rough patches and petty arguments in friendships just like any other relationship. Between careers, kids, and even financial hardships it gets hard to keep up with your friends. Outings become fewer and farther between, phone calls become text messages, and before you know it large amounts of time pass and you’ve missed chunks of each others lives. But, the ultimate goal with sisterhood is to continue to grow together instead of allowing yourselves to grow a part.

The movie truly showcases the importance of sisterhood and friendship. Life throws us numerous struggles, and those struggles become easier to handle with when you have a support group. It is encouraging to have your girls behind you cheering from the sidelines, ready to fight for your honor, or wiping your tears after a disappointment. Girls trips give you permission to pull out that dress and heels you’ve been dying to wear, eat all day everyday, and dance like there’s no tomorrow. It’s an opportunity to relax, drink, be adventerous, and just let your hair down away from your everyday life.

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Girls trips can also bring unresolved issues to the forefront. If you and one of your friends attending the trip have had an issue, you better believe it will come out on that trip. Make sure when you agree to a girls trip you have a solid relationship with each person going. Try to resolve any and all conflicts before you leave. The last thing you want to do is spend your money and be uncomfortable for a few days!

It can even bring out hidden personal issues. Someone may get too drunk and suddenly start spilling their guts and start crying. But, this is what girls trips are for! Once you agree to go on a trip with your girls, nothing is off limits! You are allowed to be on your worst behavior! You can look forward to days and nights of endless girl talk, which in essence can be very theraputic and rejuvinating!

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 I have had my fair share of girls trips. Each time I go on a trip with my girls, I come back with a greater appreciation for each one of them. Girls trips are a way to strengthen your bond all while exploring the world together.

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Girls Trip, New Orleans 2016

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Girls Trip, Northern Illinois University 2014

 

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Girls Trip, Atlanta 2015 

Have you been on a girls trip? Are you thinking of planning one? Which character are you most like from the movie? Tell me about it in the comments!

 

#Summer17WritingChallenge-3

Q: Tell the story of your favorite summer memory. 

A: My absolute favorite summer memories took place at least 20 years ago. My family would get up pretty early go to church on Sunday mornings. After church we would come home and BBQ. While we waited for the food to cook, we would have massive water fights! We used super soakers, water guns, water hoses, and even buckets! Nothing and nobody was off limits. My brother, mom, and dad were all a part of the fun. This was fun, but also a great way to cool off from the heat. We would eventually dry off and enjoy the BBQ. I hold these Sunday summer memories very close to my heart!

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What are some of your favorite summer memories? Let me know in the comments!