When Art & Reality Intersect...Powerfully

When Art & Reality Intersect...Powerfully

I left feeling like I had to bring my children to see this play.  I know there are moments that they would relate to and I am anticipating some eye opening conversations with them.  Pipeline is an absolute must see and I highly recommend it, especially for parents, educators and students. 

Pipeline runs through March 3, 2019 and tickets start at just $20.00.

Special thanks to Victory Gardens Theatre and Black Bloggers Chicago for the opportunity to cover such an outstanding event.

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The Perfect Kickoff to Black History Month

The Perfect Kickoff to Black History Month

Black history month is a time when we reflect on our community, culture and our future and the birthday celebration to Langston Hughes was the perfect kickoff to a month dedicated to celebrating our roots and our community.

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2018 Black Woman's Expo: A Safe Space for African American Women (A Recap)

2018 Black Woman's Expo:  A Safe Space for African American Women (A Recap)

Black Women's Expo Chicago (BWe Chicago) is the nation’s foremost exposition targeting the African American consumer market where she finds the latest trends, amazing new products and merchandise, gets informed, empowered and enlightened. This 3 days event was organized by MGPG Events and held at McCormick Place Convention Center.   BWe Chicago 2018 showcased a wide range of products and services catering to black women.  Products ranged from apparel and fashion accessories, health and wellness, cuisine and entertainment, medical services, home decor, nutrition, skin care products, beauty and fragrance, dating services, fitness and equipment, fashion and lifestyle, hand crafted arts, personal products, spa, and fitness.  The theme of this year’s expo was #SheMatters.  According to their website, “Strong, Savvy and Significant…The African American woman is all that and more”.   The expo featured seminars, workshops, celebrities, a teen summit, vendor’s marketplace and musical guests.   I was fortunate to attend this expo this weekend.

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A Weekend in Wakanda!

A Weekend in Wakanda!

From the moment I heard the news that this movie was being made, I was hyped!  My anticipation grew when Ryan Coogler was announced as director. I was a huge fan of his work on Fruitville Station and Creed.  Once the casting announcements started coming out and I saw one superstar after another, I just knew this was going to be an epic movie! I couldn’t wait!  To be honest, I’m not a huge comic movie fan but I do have kids who are so I see Marvel films all of the time.  However this film was more than a superhero movie for me. It was a moment to experience a black superhero on the big screen.   The sheer magnitude of a movie with a black director, writer and primarily all black cast set in Africa was something I’ve never seen before.  I knew this was going to be a special moment and I was right. I had no idea how special it would be until right now.

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The Women of Wakanda: An Explosion of Black Girl Magic on the Big Screen!

The Women of Wakanda: An Explosion of Black Girl Magic on the Big Screen!

Now I won’t get into any spoilers but I will touch on my absolute favorite aspect of the film….THE AMAZING BLACK WOMEN!  Whew….the amount of #BlackGirlMagic in this film is epic and the characters these women play are equally as badass!   

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Danielle's Favorite "Romantic" Things

Danielle's Favorite "Romantic" Things

You never need a reason or holiday to show the ones you love how much you care but any holiday that celebrates love, I’ll happily participate in. Many hate Valentine’s Day because they believe it’s commercial.  While that may be the case, I am a firm believer in that holiday’s like this are opportunities to show someone you care in an extra special way and who doesn't like feeling "extra special" sometimes?   Here are a few of my favorite Valentine’s Day things that are thoughtful, romantic, and sentimental. 

No matter what size your budget is, there's something you can do for that special someone in your life.

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Danielle's Favorite Things: Self-Care Gift Ideas!

Danielle's Favorite Things:  Self-Care Gift Ideas!

Self-Care is the buzz word lately and it’s something I speak quite frequently on this website.  Women, Black Women in particular are queens of multi-tasking; taking care of so many people, handling business, juggling careers, mothering children, etc. We rarely take time to take care of ourselves; it seems there are never enough hours in the day.   Many women who handle and juggle so many things also rarely do things for themselves to recharge and refresh. Why not gift the woman in your life that rarely takes time for herself something that allows her to focus on herself?  These are a few ideas with some of my favorite things for the woman who needs a little TLC every now and then!

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Holiday Traditions: Oh The Places You'll Go...

Holiday Traditions: Oh The Places You'll Go...

As a child, the Christmas season was a magical for me.  My parents always had us doing something that was centered on family and traditions.   From going downtown to see Santa at Marshall Fields (now Macy’s) and walking on state street to see the Christmas Windows, buying roasted chestnuts and hot cocoa or making Christmas cookies on Christmas eve, my childhood is full of treasured memories.   Now that I have a family of my own, I’ve passed down those same traditions and added a few of my own.  These are a few of my family’s favorite holiday traditions.

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Holiday Traditions: Ornaments That Tell a Story!

Holiday Traditions: Ornaments That Tell a Story!

I love the holiday season so much.  *Cue Donny Hathaway’s “This Christmas”* It is full of the things I love the most; family, friends, good cheer and traditions that have been passed down from generation to generation.  Over the holiday season, I’ll be sharing a few of my treasured memories from my own family.  Today on the blog, I’m sharing my family’s tree trimming traditions. 

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Self-Care Sunday: Gratitude Journals

Self-Care Sunday: Gratitude Journals

In continuing with this months’ series on practicing gratitude, one of the best ways to do that is by keeping a gratitude journal.  In theory, a gratitude journal is a diary used to focus attention on the positive things in their lives.

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Diner En Blanc Chicago 2017-A party in White!

Diner En Blanc Chicago 2017-A party in White!

It was a fantastic evening full of good food, great wine, awesome friends and beautiful memories. It is one of my favorite Summertime Chicago events! Over 3,000 beautiful people dressed in all white with all white tablescapes is just a beautiful and elegant sight to see!

Another year in the books! Can’t wait for next year!!!

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#SelfCareSunday: A Playlist

#SelfCareSunday: A Playlist

Music has always been a calming force in my life. No other medium other than writing brings me a sense of calm.  When my spirit is down or when I need to de-stress and decompress, I play music.  When I’m angry and upset, I play music.  When I have a broken heart, I play music. When the world doesn’t make sense, I play music.  Music and writing are my therapists.  Music speaks the words I cannot say, and writing allows me to pour out the songs I cannot sing. 

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#SaturdaySwag: 8 Outdoor Picnic Must Haves!!!

#SaturdaySwag: 8 Outdoor Picnic Must Haves!!!

Summertime usually means spending more time outdoors. Whether at the beach, a music festival, movies in the park or a romantic date out, packing a picnic requires certain essentials.   I love picnics and have different décor depending on the event but these are a few of my essentials. Start here and build your outdoor picnic kit from there!

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#FridayFunday: Where to Enjoy Free Music In Chicago!

#FridayFunday: Where to Enjoy Free Music In Chicago!

Despite what the national news says, Chicago is a beautiful city, especially during Summer. One of my favorite things about Chicago during the summer is the free music that you can hear.  Music played under the stars with a beautiful Chicago skyline, and the lakefront view is a perfect way to spend a summer night.  Chicago has something for every musical taste. From Blues, Jazz, Classical, Folk, Rock, and Dance the music reflects the diversity of this city.  The best part is that it doesn’t cost you a thing!  It’s an affordable night out for the entire family!

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#WellnessWeds: Dry Brushing Your Skin

#WellnessWeds: Dry Brushing Your Skin

Dry Brushing is the process of brushing the skin with a natural brush to stimulate lymph flow, improve circulation, exfoliate, get rid of dead skin and prevent cellulite.   As a self-proclaimed “skin freak,” I’m completely obsessed with having clear and healthy skin.  Now that I’m older, I’ve become more concerned with preserving a certain youthfulness and healthy glow.  Dry Brushing helps to keep your skin clear, your melanin poppin and your “glow” on point!

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#TransformationTuesday: Working out at Home

#TransformationTuesday: Working out at Home

A busy schedule leaves little time to go to the gym.  Sometimes no matter how much you try, getting to the gym can be difficult to do. What do you do when you want to work out but can't’ make it to the gym or can’t afford gym membership fees?  Working out at home is an easy and cost effective way to stay fit. There are a few ways to get fit at home, and most involve little to no equipment at all. 

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#WellnessWeds: The Benefits of Oil Pulling

#WellnessWeds: The Benefits of Oil Pulling

Oil pulling is a trend that has become popular amongst wellness experts but idea of oil pulling is actually quite old. It is an ancient form of oral therapy from Ayurvedic medicinal practice that is over 3000 years old.    Oil Pulling is the process of pulling bacterial from your teeth and gums.   Your mouth is full of bacteria and oil pulling is a great way to improve your oral health.  

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#FridayFunday: 8 Steakhouses Dad Will Enjoy!!!

#FridayFunday: 8 Steakhouses Dad Will Enjoy!!!

My dad is a meat and potatoes kinda guy!  As I was putting together this list, I had him in mind.  He likes a great steak with full and hearty side dishes.  Here are 8 Chicago Steakhouses that your dad is sure to enjoy!

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#WellnessWeds: The Benefits of Himalayan Salt

#WellnessWeds: The Benefits of Himalayan Salt

I first discovered Himalayan salt when I was looking for detox bath recipes.  I found that adding it to my detox baths helped me to sleep better and made my skin softer.    Then I was introduced to another benefit of Himalayan salt when I went to a Korean Bath Spa and enjoyed an hour in a salt cave.  My skin felt amazing after that experience. I wanted to learn more about Himalayan salt and why it was suddenly so popular.  I found that Himalayan salt has many benefits that go far beyond relaxing the body and relieving stress. 

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#TransformationTuesday: Meal Planning on a Budget

#TransformationTuesday: Meal Planning on a Budget

IT’S COSTS MORE TO EAT RIGHT!!!

Have you ever said this before?  I know I have but I’m learning that with some time management, organization and planning it doesn’t have to be that way.   I’m a list maker, planner loving; post it not making kind of girl. I literally plan and schedule my entire life. So why was I so reckless about planning meals?  Quite simply, I’m tired!!! LOL…After working and juggling so much, who has to the time to plan a meal?  By the time I get home, I’m spending time with the kids, writing, managing blogs, bills and household chores. Meal planning just wasn’t a priority....UNTIL I realized how much money I was spending on food!!! I have three kids (ages 15, 13 and 11), so food disappears frequently in the bodies of these growing kids.  I spend my weekends running around so as a result, we tend to eat out a lot. It all adds up.  I’m really trying to cut my expenses so I can spend my money on experiences such as travel, so I had to make the time to research and figure this meal planning thing out.

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