The Snow Outside

It wasn’t nearly as bad as expected, but I’m glad I prepared for it. Its still snowing where I am, and windy, so I’m in for the day working on some things for you!
Stay safe today, y’all. Roads are still hazardous. 🙂
Bonus: here’s a pic of outdoors:

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Stay warm today!

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Since Snowpacalypse is Coming Today…

…how about getting a new book to read?

So, I was contacted by the lovely Leila Lacey about reviewing one of her books. And as I’m reading her email and I see it’s romance I’m all..

Ew.*eye roll*

Yes, yes, not a fan of romance novels. But hear me out, because there’s a good reason for that.

All the heroines in the typical romance novels are the same. They’re all in need of some type of rescue, and are usually thin, busty, and blonde. As if people of color just do. not. exist! in this world of romance.

And I just can’t relate to that. It’s hard to understand what love and romance looks like to Black folks when they aren’t properly represented in these types of novels. It’s easy to dismiss these things as fluff, but the problem is that even in fluff I’d love to have equal representation. That’s it. It’s good to know that we too can be sexy beings.

But Ms. Lacey’s novels are different. These are Black (!!!) women, successful in their own right, and get this…

They’re all curvy, plus sized women. Thank heavens! I won’t say these characters are perfect (Vixen, from the novel I read, has some body issues) but that is part of the charm. These are women that I can relate to because I know (and have been!) that same woman.

Once I got to that part, I was all in for giving it a try.

I had the pleasure of getting a couple of the books from the Curvy Goddess series, and I have to admit: I’m both impressed and hooked.

So let’s talk about the first novel in the series, The Vixen. Ok, we have a successful businesswoman, Vixen, who has been carrying on an online relationship with a man, Daniel, for 6 months. They finally meet, and through a series of misunderstandings and misconceptions, have a hell of a time getting it together.

I have zero intent on telling y’all if they do finally get it together. Go read the book! I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Did I mention you can get it for free? See, you have nothing to lose! Go here and get yourself a copy.

Sidebar: I saw a lot of designers name dropped in this novel that I wasn’t sure if they did plus size clothes, but listen. I’d pay GOOD MONEY  to get a hold of some of that swag that Vixen rocked in there. #Plussizeplease, D&G!

If you’re in the Northeast, please get indoors from this storm and stay safe. Get a new book! You’ll enjoy it, I’m sure!

Disclaimer: This novel was provided to me for the purposes of review. All opinions are my own.

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Fatshion Friday: Keep Your Bones, Target

Yesterday, I read about the newest Target designer collaboration: Lilly Pulitzer.

I was cautiously excited, because I LOVE me some Lilly Pulitzer. Bright, colorful, happy perpetual springtime lives in those designs. Cautious, because Target has a track record of not bothering to stock their designer collabs in plus sizes.

And then: glimmer of hope! They’re gonna stock these designs in plus!

*cheers happiness hooray*

And then…*sad trombone* They’ll only be stocked online. Because OF COURSE THEY ARE.

*exasperated sigh*

Here’s the thing. Look at that first article I posted up there. Did you see any mention of the plus size range? Any plus sized models in the pictures? No? You either? Ok.

So, y’all are willing to take my money, Target, but you can’t admit you like me? That other women like me have serious buying power? I see what this is.

I’m happy that Target is willing to branch out with their offerings, and give plus sizes a chance. But I can’t imagine they didn’t know that their plus sized customer was unhappy with their current offerings, what with all of the hullabaloo surrounding the disappearance of plus sizes from their stores. When people clamored for the return of the plus sized section, a paltry sign appeared where the 2 racks used to be stating “We’ll be back soon with new offerings!”

Hey, Target? My store still doesn’t have new offerings. Can y’all get on that please? Thanks kindly.

Now you tell me that there’s FINALLY a designer collab that will fit me and I can’t even go try it on? This is not ok.

Oh, I should be happy you expanded the sizes? Don’t get me wrong, I am quite excited!

But y’all just threw me a bone.

I want the whole piece of chicken.

I, like a lot of women, prefer to feel fabrics, see the colors in person, see if it stretches, try things on. I don’t have money to be purchasing more than one of the same item online in case something doesn’t work. I don’t have time to be paying for shipping to get it to me (and I think returns are free, but what if the other size is out of stock in the time it takes you to return it?)

Stop shaking that bone of “but it’s in PLUS” at me.

I want the whole piece of chicken.

I like instant gratification just like the next person. The idea of piecing the outfit together, gathering shoes and accessories all in the same place? Deliberately finding somewhere to go to show off my good taste? All of that excitement? Slightly watered down when I have to order it online.

“We gave you what you wanted!” I am not here for this bone you keep wagging at me.

Give me the whole piece of chicken!

My money is just as green. I deserve just as many options. I freely admit that if I had more access to clothing I’d probably spend more than I do on it now. I do the majority of my shopping online, as that’s where the good options are. But I wish I had more brick and mortar stores to do that in.

Target, you have stores all over the country, and you couldn’t even be bothered to put your first designer collab that comes in plus in a store? That bone you keep throwing at me just looks more and more meager.

I don’t need your bone.

I need the whole piece of chicken. And the respect and courtesy of being able to shop as the rest of your customers do.

 

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Banishing the Diet-Mind

This is the year I can’t be bothered to do a “lose weight” resolution.

Normally, I don’t do resolutions in general. Can’t be bothered to try and keep them, and the moment I break them.

But every year, whether spoken or not, I always have “lose weight this year” bouncing about in the back of my head.

It’s something I fight. Because despite all of the things I’ve done in life, all the things I’ve overcome, all the things I’m working towards currently…it’s this damned resolution that rings in my ears every year.

Because if I can do it, I can be truly successful.

Let’s unpack that, shall we?

Over the last few years I have climbed the ladder at work, and won awards for doing that thing I do so well. This year I have decided to get my MFA in creative writing, and am completing applications in between my other projects. I hope to get a short story published this year. I’m branching out socially. I actually think I’m enjoying it even. I take pictures and I SMILE, for goodness’ sake!

None of that makes me successful, to my Diet-Mind. I’m still fat.

How sad, right?

Most of us fat folks have a Diet-Mind. The Diet-Mind is that voice that sits in the back of your head and speaks to you when you’re at your lowest moment. It convinces you that the problems you’re having will somehow go away if you lose weight. Typically, that isn’t how it works, but the Diet-Mind is pretty convincing. It gives us something to change, to fix, to hang on to when there’s nothing else tangible to blame. We shift it inward. And next to the deep part of your soul, in a dark cave, the Diet-Mind lurks. Waiting for the moment to strike.

Sometimes we give in to that Diet-Mind, the harpy. Polishing its delicate claws, the Diet-Mind seeks to needle its way into our delicate psyche. We can’t be happy with our myriad of accomplishments.

I finally made it into Headstand!  Diet-Mind: Doesn’t matter. Your belly hangs.

I made it to the end of the trail. I’m not even out of breath! Diet-Mind: But your thighs rub together though. Ew.

This outfit came together perfectly! I look amazing, and I feel— Diet-Mind: fat. You feel fat, hon. Because you are.

-_-

The Diet-Mind seeks to undermine our self confidence at every turn. No celebrating, because at every turn, we’re reminded that we are fat.

As if we didn’t see that in the mirror this morning.

Bit by bit, the Diet-Mind whispers into our ears about how we’d really look fabulous if we dropped about 20lbs. Think of the inversions you could make! The trails you could hike! You can’t do that now. You’re fat. You’ll embarrass yourself. Listen, how about you wait until you’re not overweight, ok? Let’s work on that first. Then you can hike, and do yoga, and dress properly. Come on, now. Be realistic.

The Diet-Mind is negativity incarnate.

I’ll pause here to say–sometimes, for some people, the Diet-Mind is a kind soul. It helps some of us get to the next level, to make a good decision for our health. For some people, the Diet-Mind is a life saver.

For others, quite a few of us, including me, the Diet-Mind seeks to destroy us from the inside. It wraps itself around our self worth, our confidence, our core well being and strangles what bit of positive thinking we have. If it isn’t our Diet-Mind being horrid, it’s someone else’s Diet-Mind telling us: hey, look, it can be done! She fixed herself. You can do it to! What’s your excuse? Or even still: I worry about you. Won’t you work on this? For me?

But…I’m not broken. I’m just fat. How can my fat bother you, exactly? I live in my body, you live in yours. Let me be happy in my body, you be happy in yours.

That’s it.

That’s all.

If I’m looking to lose anything this year, it’s the Diet-Mind. It knows when to rear its ugly head, normally when I’m at my highest stress level, and tries to convince me the way to serenity is losing 70lbs.

But being smaller won’t get my paperwork done, though. It won’t get this manuscript written or proofed. It won’t get me clients. It won’t improve my makeup skills. Won’t change my style–I’m already fierce.

What my Diet-Mind actually gets me is lower self esteem and lower confidence. It makes me think I’m not worthy of companionship, and that me being fat is why.

And absolutely none of that is true.

If I had to make a resolution this year, and call it a resolution, it would be this: to love myself more. To be kinder to myself. To accept myself in all of my flaws and failings, and to recognize that all of these come together to make this person. That makes ME. And loving myself as I am, in this body, is OK. Yes, it’s a radical act, but it’s mine to make, and I do so proudly.

Diet-Mind, you are no longer free to take up residence in my brain. Begone!

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Fatshion Friday: New Year, New Perspective

Hello my lovelies! I hope y’all had a safe and happy new year. 🙂

Wednesday, I told y’all about my outfit I’d originally planned for New Year’s Eve.

Sadly, I still haven’t got it (no one was able to sign for it, so it’ll be delivered today, hopefully) but I’d gotten a surprise shipment from Eloquii on Tuesday.

I’d only ordered it the previous Friday, and didn’t think I’d get it in time. I was so happy I did, because I’d managed to ransack my room trying to figure out what to put on and still wasn’t 100% happy with what I’d put together.

But before I get into my fabulous outfit, I want to have a moment to discuss my history with New Years.

I don’t really have one. This was the first year since I moved to the Big Apple that I’d actually gone out to celebrate. Logistics of trying to navigate NYC on NYE aside (OMG Y’ALL. SUCH A PAIN) there’s always something to get into, and I’d never taken the time to experience it.

Most of it had to do with me being socially awkward and introverted. I’ve made some strides over the last year to get out and do things, even if it’s by myself. That hasn’t always been me though. I actually found the club my friends and I attended and coordinated getting folks to come out. Also not something I normally do.

But it was so worth it.

NYE is fraught with anxiety for most people, particularly if you’re single. It’s seen as a night to maybe make a new friend and get a kiss at midnight. I’ve still not had that first year’s kiss experience, but my NYE wasn’t lacking at all. That wasn’t what I was aiming for. I wanted to celebrate surrounded by my friends, and ring in the new year with some of my favorite people in the world.

I got to do that. And for that, I am happy and grateful. 😀

I also looked fabulous.

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Please don’t mind the blurry club pics. This was a pause in the middle of a happy dance!

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And here’s me and my friend C, all dolled up for the night.

Now, let’s talk outfit details. Yep. That’s my belly. All of it. Stretch marks and all.

And I was so surprised at how many compliments I received. Even though I love to push my personal comfort boundaries, I still get anxiety about wearing clothes that society says fat girls aren’t supposed to wear. Crop top? What? Are people gonna laugh at me?

Maybe they did. I couldn’t hear them over how others told me they loved what I had on. So, this is the African Violet set from Eloquii, and I layered it with their white Longline Vest  because a) cold, and b) pockets (the skirt has pockets too). I wore a simple pair of sparkly flats (that cut my toe 😦 ) but were relatively comfortable, and I danced the night away with my friends.

Then we had breakfast, and we all went home with smiles on our faces.

If NYE was an indicator of how my 2015 is going to go, then I’m here for all of it. Here’s to new experiences and fabulous fashion in the new year!

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Happy New Year!

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I want to thank each and every one of you for reading and interacting with me, whether it’s here on the blog, or on any of the various social networks I’m on. I love writing and hanging out with y’all in this space, and you help make me great!

I hope y’all were able to leave 2014 at peace, and that 2015 is everything y’all hope and need for it to be.

Happy New Year!

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