One Thing I Love About Facebook/ Just Blog It Challenge Day 8

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I cannot actually remember the first time I heard about Facebook rather I remember one of my first encounters with it. I was 25 and working as a Residential Counselor for Upward Bound at Rutgers University. Some fellow counselors and I were in the computer lab on a break. I would say at least three of them were on the internet looking at their Facebook pages. I was completely uninterested so much to the point I forgot about an account I had made under a hotmail account. I did not bother with Facebook until 2007. I created a new account with yahoo.

During this time I had just broken up with some friends and trying to solidify a life in the District of Columbia without them, needless to say it was a rough time. I did not have any pictures and definitely didn’t have any friends. I hated Facebook and had no use for it. Fast forward maybe a  year or two my social life hit an incredible upswing. I was going out and making new friends having a ball. All that went on Facebook. I had a jerk back in 2007 who told me to get a life because I had commented on a mutual friend’s page about his lack of photos. The disparaging comment in hindsight, I believe motivated me to move on. Thank you jerk off, not only did I get a life but I am so enamored with my Facebook page, I’m borderline narcissistic. Whenever I’m feeling a little down or lonely, or less accomplished I do a quick browse through my photos and instantly reminded of how awesome I am. I made some really good memories with people I enjoyed. Facebook has now become a constant companion. I try to keep my sad posts to a minimum but who doesn’t have a bad day? I am very mindful of the friends I add to my page and a lot of people I have never met in person are some of the best people in the world. Always there to give me encouragement. I appreciate Facebook for giving me a platform to express myself through my blog, to keep tabs on all my friends and family members who are stretched across the country, and it keeps me informed on what’s going on in the world.  I like being able to size up a guy by his Facebook page. I like to stalk too lol. In a nutshell my social life thrives on its existence.

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Industry Pet Peeve/Just Blog It Day Challenge 6

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I don’t have a business to complain about personally but I do have some music industry complaints. My blog was created out of the love for neo soul music. I know some people think it’s hokey and neo soul music is played out but it’s not. There is a whole wide world of great artist and musicians who are very talented providing positive music. I wish these particular artists would get more notice and become the norm versus the opposite of what we are witnessing in current day music. I tell people all the time good music is still being made but you might not hear it unless you have XM radio. I also find it strange how when neo soul was becoming mainstream and everybody was obsessed with Jilly from Philly, Musiq, India Arie, Glenn Lewis, Kindred the Family…etc….why those particular artist started to phase out. I for one was all on board for a musical revolution, a new revelation.  I’m not sure what type of r&b took its place but I do know hip hop was going down a single tracked road and the golden age of hip hop as some of us like to refer to was dwindling slowly to its enviable demise. It is annoying to think how many people have access to regular radio but we are at the mercy of the people who think they know what we want to hear. According to mainstream America everyone wants to hear Lil Wayne ten times a day and that simply is not the case. I will say living in the District of Columbia I have access to two radio stations that play current neo soul, and old school r&b, but not every urban area across the country has the same luxury.  My best defense against poor music is to give people options. My hope is to garner as much recognition as possible for people who believe in good music. Don not give up on good music it still exists and if you need some guidance check out my blog. (Insert shameless plug).

Best Advice/Just Blog It Day 5 Challenge

ImageThe best advice I ever received was success is the best revenge. I struggled a great deal throughout all my years of school and I was often belittled and talked down to as a result. Even as an adult going to college I never felt I measured up. I know it sounds  incredibly cliché but I also adhere to the old adage let them haters be your motivators. I can recall  several accounts when someone has tried to put me down only for me to turn around and do something great(like graduate from college, twice). Some of my “friends” I went to high school with were shocked when they found out I was in college. I always wanted to attend an HBCU, and I wasn’t going to let anyone or anything deter from me going.

I know you should not care what people think about you, but in life you are going to encounter a lot of people posing to be confident when they are highly insecure. Insecure people will do anything to infringe on your rights to be great. They will befriend you just to see if they can tear you down.  It is a hurtful process but when I had a real friend break it down to me I finally understood. One of the most effective ways to counteract what people say or do to you, is to pursue the hell out of your dreams, be secure, and work on peace of mind. Success is measured differently by each individual but once you achieve it and look back at the people who never thought you were good enough, you will have won.

Day 4 of the Just Blog It Challenge/ 5 Must Haves for College Preparedness

College first1. Mentor- Find someone who has been to college and lived the entire experience. College can be extremely daunting for those who are first generation students. So many decisions to make concerning a could be life altering experience. You need someone who is going to sit you down . Someone who will  dispel honesty about  the issues you may encounter and how to handle them effectively.

2. Research- Do your research on the colleges you are most interested in attending. I would suggests narrowing down your options even to locations. I would also suggest for those who might be weary of moving away from family to consider a two year school. Getting your feet wet in a two year school will prepare you for the sense of alternating schedules, the new feel of freedom, buying books, and standing in long lines.

3.Scholarships- I was not well versed on the on concept of searching for scholarships but nowadays you can do a Google search and a plethora of different scholarships are awarded to people, even down to people who are left handed. Find as many scholarships as you can and apply to as many as you can. Nothing bad will come of applying to multiple scholarships, only good. I was awarded a scholarship to waiver my out of state tuition fees. Every bit counts.

4. Campus Tours- All colleges are available to conduct tours. It is imperative if you can to get a feel for a college campus especially if you have never stepped foot on a large university. I attended small HBCU’s in undergrad so when I was accepted to the University Houston I was immediately intimidated. But once you get  the hang of it and meet people who are just as lost, knowing your way around campus becomes like second like nature.

5. Financial Aid- Familiarize yourself with the ins and outs of how you plan to financially secure the duration of your time in school . You  might be one of the few who is allotted a free ride for your entire college career, but most of us will not have the luxury. The financial aid office is the most stressful office on campus. But if you arm yourself with knowledge beforehand, take all the classes and seminars offered, the anxiety will decrease immensely.

*Bonus / Attitude- Your attitude toward the experience will also play a large role in how you successful your experience will be. I know after my first round in the financial aid office after standing in line for centuries, I felt defeated. Once I got through the all the red tape, I still knew in my heart I wanted to attend college and a bad day trying to register was not going to stop me. Have a positive mindset and you will graduate.

4 Effective Ways To Love Yourself

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For the List Post challenge I chose to go with a list of self care practices. It might seem like common sense but so many of miss out on opportunities to take care of ourselves. Throughout my graduate social work program we  were constantly reminded of burnout because of the demanding, exhausting challenges of being in the social work field. If you are not taking care yourself you cannot take care of anyone else. I believe no matter what and who you are, can benefit from self care.

EXERCISE: I know most people have very demanding schedules and taking time for exercise can feel like a minimal task on your long list of to-dos but in actuality it can be life saving and well worth the time you carved to do it. Most people know 30 minutes a day keeps the Dr. away but I would suggest even 15 minutes a day will work just as good. I would also suggest finding an exercise you enjoy like zumba, pilates, or yoga. All of which you can do in the comfort of your own home with the assistance of a youtube search.

HOBBIES: I personally searched high and low for a hobby I could do with spending little to no money, guess what was on the top of my list? If you guessed blogging, you guessed right. You can easily sign up for a free blogging site and write till your hearts content.  You even have the options of turning your blog into a business, way cool right. The creative freedom involved will make you feel good about yourself. If writing is not your forte do a quick google search and I promise you will find something that will tickle your fancy.

COOKING: I am not the best cook in the world but preparing a meal for yourself or friends and family can be quite soothing and satisfying. Tex-Mex happens to be one of my  favorite types of food. One I find to be the most easiest to prepare. You can get super creative with a tostada shell and the outcome will look like a chef’s delight.

HOT BUBBLE BATHS: Who doesn’t love them. Not only do they relieve stress but you can also detoxify your skin. The renewed sense of refreshment will have you walking on cloud nine. I prefer mine with soft music, candles and a glass of wine.

I could go on and on but I think you get the point. Find some time to carve out moments of self care. Loving on yourself like no one else , is the best GIFT you can give yourself.

My Story

What’s up good people? One night I was sitting on my couch zoned out possibly listening to the Jill Scott when it hit me. My fabulous friends and I s should start a blog about what it means to be   neo soul so here it is.

 Who am I you ask?

 I am A. Buttafly aka Yonnie aka Ayana(beautiful flower). My journey from a permed worm to a natural buttafly is one that I am gratefully appreciative of.  Growing up like most black women I had no idea there could be a world without a perm. I also love how neo soul incorporates   natural hair and how natural hair inspires fashion. I am not an expert on hair, music, or hair but have an immense passion for it.  

I’m also an MSW who cares a great deal about people in general. I like to advocate for the rights of others and empower those who may have difficulty viewing themselves in the shining light everyone deserves.

My father was in the military so I was born in Madrid, Spain, and raised in Utah, Texas and now fully reside in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area.

I have one brother and two parents who have been married for 42 years.

My hope is to one day have a mentoring non-profit geared towards building self esteem for young girls.

So please sit back and enjoy the ride of my random rants, and insightful musings.

  I will be sharing with you my opinions, thoughts, and random rants.  So get comfy and enjoy ride.