You Must Experience these Five Houston Black-Owned Brunch Spots at Least Once in Your Lifetime

wine in clear glass near food on plate on table
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Hello, February! This is one of my favorite months because of Valentine’s Day and Black History Month! This year in honor of Black History Month, I have decided to patronize more black-owned businesses. Since food is a necessity to live, I thought it would be good to share my favorite Houston black-owned restaurants. Particularly, five great Houston black-owned brunch spots that I love.

I am currently living in Houston. Even though I have only been living in Houston for one year, I have been coming here for over 30 years. One of the best things that I have learned since I’ve been living here is that they have some great restaurants with even better food! Many Houston restaurants have some of the best brunch menus that I have ever had. If you’re ever in Houston, I suggest that you try one of these five black-owned brunch spots at least once in your lifetime. You can thank me later…

  1. Taste Bar + Kitchen. This black-owned restaurant is located in Houston’s Midtown and owned by Chef, Don Bowie. The restaurant is located specifically at 3015 Bagby Street, an extremely busy street. Valet is encouraged and reservations are suggested or you might have a two-hour wait. However, the food is worth it. The menu boasts of chicken and waffle meals that include your choice of red velvet, chocolate chip, pecan praline, sweet potato, or cinnamon toast waffles. Then you can expect to choose lobster smoked gouda mac-n-cheese or bacon smoked mac-n-cheese. There are many other mouth-watering specialty items that are too many to mention, but you can always go to their website and check it out here tastebarkitchen.com.
  2. Bar 5015. This bar no doubt got it’s name because it is located exactly at 5015 Almeda Road in the heart of Houston’s Third Ward. It isn’t really like your typical bar in that it gives you more lounge vibes. It had previously closed down due to an explosion, but recently reopened in 2019 and seemingly better than ever. The bar is owned by Steve Rogers, a native of Houston who also owns the infamous Prospect Park Restaurants. When I first moved to Houston, I learned a lot about Mr. Rogers and how he started as a party promoter and eventually opened up his own restaurants. Now, if you visit any of his establishments you will notice that all of his work appears to be paying off. As for the food, the food is pretty good, but what I love is the vibe. Bar 5015 now is hosting patio concerts with guests like, Too $hort and Mannie Fresh. They just started their brunch menu again on Sundays, which starts at 12pm and ends at 9pm. Their wings and cocktails are out of this world. They have a website, but you get a better picture of their menu on Instagram by following their page @5015BAR.
  3. Lucille’s. Can I just say how much I love this place? First of all, the ambience is perfect. It’s nice and quiet and very romantic. You can eat on the inside or the back patio. I prefer outside on the patio because it’s huge. They have an outside bar and the patio lights to maintain the same ambience and vibe as the inside. Their menu is simplistic, but their presentation is superb! Their brunch menu includes Shrimp and Grits and Oxtail Omelettes. The food is so pretty that you won’t want to eat off your plate! The drinks are equally as delectable! Lucille’s is also in Third Ward at 5512 La Branch Street, just a few blocks away from Bar 5015. Their brunch hours are Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. until 3.p.m. Since the pandemic started, you must make reservations to get in on the weekends. To see the full menu, go to www.lucilleshouston.com.
  4. Phil and Derek’s. I don’t even know where to start with these guys. This is my favorite Sunday brunch spot in Houston. Here’s why: 1) They have one of the best buffet-style brunches in the city. 2) They play the best Hip-Hop on Sunday’s. 3) The staff is friendly and very accommodating. Here’s the thing I hate: it’s extremely hard to get in on Sundays. Their brunch starts at 10 a.m. on Sundays and if you don’t get there by then, you will likely have to wait in the line which can sometimes be around the corner. No lie. I’ve experienced it many times. Therefore, I encourage you to make reservations. They serve your typical chicken, waffles, fish, potatoes, eggs, bacon, greens, mac-n-cheese, and peach cobbler. They also serve pretty good mimosas. My daughter turned me on to Phil and Derek’s before she graduated from The University of Houston. Back then, they were in a small house in Third Ward. Well, they obviously outgrew that spot and moved into a larger spot and now it looks like they are outgrowing this spot, as well. Moral to this story: business is good because the food is great! They are located at 1701 Webster Street. To learn more and see their full brunch menu, go to www. philanddereks.com.
  5. Olive & Twist. This spot is new to my list. Whereas, the other brunch spots, I have frequented many times, but I just started going to Olive & Twist. What I love besides the menu is that it’s really close to my brother so that makes it even more convenient. In addition to location, the food is great and the music is even better. One thing, though, that can be a plus or a minus is that it is small. However, I like that. It has a patio facing Richmond so you can watch all of the traffic passing by as you eat and listen to cool music. It is definitely a vibe. It’s located at 2712 Richmond Avenue. The “Nola Crawfish Benedict” is the best thing I have ever tasted in my life! To see the full menu, go to www.twist.bar.com.

This concludes my list. I hope you will consider checking out more black-owned restaurants this month and learning their unique stories and histories. If you’re ever in Houston, you must experience at least one of these Houston black-owned brunch spots in your lifetime.

If I missed some great spots, please share in the comments. I would love to add to this list.

Seven Reasons Why 2021 Will Be the Most Important Year for Black History Month

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Move over January because February is here bringing red roses and Black History! This month is usually remembered for lovers, but not this time. This February, 2021 will prove to be a very important year. It will be remembered for many reasons, but 2021 will be remembered mainly as the most important year for Black History Month. I am giving you seven reasons why.

Despite Covid sweeping through and wreaking havoc on the entire world, there were some highlights. The pandemic caused global shortages and shutdowns in massive proportions. Many governments did not know how to respond to some of the issues and many concessions had to be made. Most of these allowances would help the black community. We gained access to resources, funding, and information that had not been available prior to now. These gains, if used wisely, can help black people in ways we can only imagine. Simply by exercising prudence with the resources given, then we can make some real momentum in the advancement of colored people. Ultimately, creating historical moments that will invigorate history books to reflect the true heroic moments for black people. These are some reasons why 2021 will be the most important year for Black History.

However, that was not it! There are more reasons 2021 will be the most important year for black history. Here are my seven reasons why 2021 will be the most important year for Black History Month:

  1. We now have our first African American female Vice-President of the United States. She is a graduate of a historically black college. She is an attorney by trade. She is a wife. She is a mother (step-mother to Cole and Ella Emhoff). She is Bomb! She now holds the second highest role in the United States. We, African Americans, cannot take this for granted! We must not beat our chests because there is much work to do! We MUST roll up our sleeves and prepare to do our parts because we now have someone in office who looks like us! She was sworn into office January 2021 and that makes Black History Month that much sweeter in February. We can sit back with pride knowing that we have much to celebrate this month.
  2. Legendary icon, Cicely Tyson, dies at 96 years of age. She was literally the Black Mother of all mothers in the black community. She tore down walls, kicked in doors, and broke many barriers. When she opened her mouth to speak, black people listened. When she appeared on our television screens, we stopped to gaze in awe of her talent. She was well respected and there will never be another Cicely Tyson! I truly believe that is the reason we were allowed to have her for so long. Her gift was sooooo important and impactful. Her legacy will remain forever. A legacy that will remain important to the history of black culture.
  3. Georgia now has its first African American Senator, Raphael Warnock. As a native of Georgia, he comes with his own impressive resume. After the 2020 elections, black voters in Georgia had enough! When it was time for their runoff election in January for two Senate seats, the black voters in Georgia said we got time today! As Republican voters tried to hold on to their power in the Senate and in the State of Georgia, the black voters of Georgia said “NOT TF TODAY!” They stood unified and they stood strong. Their consensus, acts of bravery, and courage allowed the Democrats to take the majority lead in the United States Senate. That is a heck of a historical moment for African American history. One that will be recognized in history books as important and compelling.
  4. The reality of white privilege and systemic racism was radically exposed and turned on its head during the attack on The Capitol. For years, blacks have debated the existence of white privilege and racism in America while white America has walked around with blinders on. However, after the insurrection at The Capitol in Washington, D.C., it was pretty hard to deny what was so evident right before our very eyes. The large majority of the rioters at the Capitol were white middle-class Americans clearly attempting a coupe on American soil and receiving the most lenient treatment as they tried to overthrow the government!!!! Like, where TF do they do this? The grim reality of these acts of sedition is that an African American would have been sentenced to death. As our court systems currently prove that 80% of the convictions of African Americans are far harsher for way less crimes. Therefore, America has some explaining to do! It is going to be very, very important moving forward to see how America responds to the treatment of African Americans in the future while clearly giving so many white Americans a slap on the wrist.
  5. Amanda Gorman becomes the first African American poet laureate to recite a spoken word poem at Joe Biden’s Inauguration and Super Bowl. Can someone say huge? Did I mention that she is a Harvard graduate and only 22 years of age? Amanda Gorman was born a twin with major developmental delays and a speech impediment. Still, she has published two books. Something tells me that we will hear so much more about this beautiful black woman in the future. Her gifts have certainly made room for her! Now the history books are making space, as well.
  6. The largest number of grants ever were offered to African American businesses! It started with stimulus checks and then eventually small business loans and grants. Before it was all over, private industry followed suit and just started giving money away to African American businesses and underrepresented communities! As an entrepreneur, that is the gift that keeps on giving. Capital is the biggest problem that African American small businesses face. Prior to the pandemic, we are systemically denied access to loans and opportunities. Well, all of that has changed. More African American businesses have received assistance like never before. Now African Americans can’t hide behind this excuse anymore. Now, it’s up to us to put our money where our mouth is. The American Dream is no longer so far-fetched. It’s now closer than we think. This will be duly noted in history.
  7. The vaccination is being administered and available at record numbers to African Americans. It has been no secret that Covid has affected the black community in large numbers. In 2020, a vaccine was created. Now the President is trying to make it available to the people who need it most: African

Americans and other low-income groups. Currently, it is still too early to determine who all will receive vaccines and its effects, but if all of the groups get help, then that will be a huge win for the black community. If successful, it will prove to be a historical victory, as well! It can never erase what the Tuskegee Airmen experiment did, but it can certainly ease our memory a bit.

African Americans have so much to celebrate this year. Yet, we still have so far to go to attain equality and fairness in this country. We cannot become complacent. We must continue to strive to push the advancement of African Americans in this country. That can only help to unify us as a nation and global power. This can only happen with the support and recognition of black history. This is why 2021 is proving to be the most important year for Black History Month! So far, we are off to a pretty good start! To learn Why the Biden Administration Means So Much Right Now, click here.

How much do you know about Black History and what do was teach about black history in school?

Netflix and Chill Just Got Better!

I am so excited about Netflix this season. I have compiled a list of my top five shows that I will be watching on Netflix in the coming months. They have a really good selection of shows right now. Netflix and chill just got hotter just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Netflix and chill is better than ever now! Most of these shows give a pretty good variety on Netflix. Many of them have several seasons to offer you an opportunity to watch quite a few episodes. Therefore, if you are looking for new shows to watch this season, then you will have plenty in this list to keep you occupied. Here’s my list:

  1. Queen of the South. I have watched this series twice. I used to be a huge Power fan, but when it ended I needed something else similar. This provided the gangster fix that I needed. The bonus for this show is that the main characters are women. That’s what I enjoy the most. One is Cruella Deville and the other is a female Robin Hood. They both keep the show pretty interesting.
  2. Brigerton. I haven’t watched this one yet, but the reviews are pretty good. Just hang tight and I will have more details later. I like a love story that’s filled with passion. It appears that it might not disappoint. We shall see. Plus, it’s a Shonda Rhimes series so there’s no need to add more.
  3. All American. I have watched this one a few times, also. I am from a town where high school football was my life before leaving and going to college. This show really resonated with me. It also tells a pretty good story. If you liked Friday Night Lights, then you will enjoy this series. It comes back in January so that makes it even better. You probably don’t have time to binge-watch, but you can get a good head start.
  4. Queen’s Gambit. I have not watched one episode of this, but the fact that 62 million viewers watched within 28 days let’s me know that it has to be pretty good. I never understood the game of chess, but I have always wanted to learn. However, the reviews state the show, as well as the game, offers many great life lessons. That makes it even more intriguing. Stay tuned…
  5. Ozark. This show is amazing, but It’s not returning. Therefore, I hate to get anyone all excited and then find out that it won’t be returning to tell us what happens next. All I can say is that once you start you won’t be disappointed. It actually keeps you intrigued from beginning to end.

Will you be ready to Netflix and chill? Do you have Netflix? If not, then you can sign up at www.netflix.com. If you have seen any of these shows, tell me what you think in the comments. I would love to hear your opinion on my list. What shows are you excited about this season?

5 Reasons You Need a Daily Skincare Routine

Natural beauty is key

I have always prided myself on my skin. For as long as I can remember, I have taken great care of my skin and it has paid off. It all started when I was in grade school. I was so fascinated with masks and cleansers to make my skin softer and prevent breakouts. Eventually, I even started giving my girlfriends advice on how to protect their own skin.

Over the years, I have learned a few things about how I have managed to maintain pretty clear skin for the most part. Meanwhile, some of my peers have not been as lucky. I have noticed that many have had a few things in common that has caused them to have more frequent skin problems and irritations than normal. For me, having a routine that I have maintained religiously over the years has helped me.

Having a daily skincare routine is necessary if you would to have beautiful supple skin. However, if you do have a routine, but still don’t see any progress, then you should consider a few factors that might contribute to your problem. If you suffer from any of the things I am about to suggest, then you might need a skincare routine. I’m going to give you five reasons that you need a skincare routine to improve your skin.

  1. You wear makeup daily. If you wear makeup daily, then you need a daily skincare routine. The chemicals in makeup can clog your pores and eventually breakouts. A daily skincare routine can help alleviate the problems can come from wearing makeup every day.
  2. You smoke. Without sounding preachy, I’m about to preach! I’m sorry, but smoking is just bad for your skin. Smoking can cause wrinkles and lines in your face. Smoking also speeds up premature aging. I don’t know anyone who wants to speed up their aging process. I can’t tell you not to smoke, but I’m going to do it anyway. Don’t smoke! However, if you do, you need to incorporate a skincare routine as quickly as possible.
  3. Poor diet. If you eat a lot of junk food or fast food, it will eventually show in your skin. Your skin will directly reflect what you put in it. If you put a lot of garbage in it, then your face will eventually look as bad as the stuff that you put in your face. On the flip side, if you eat fruits, vegetables, and plant-based, then you will see a huge difference in your skin. Let’s not forget that water is the best thing for your face.
  4. You’re stressed. Stress kills and makes you look not so great. Stress causes breakouts and
  5. You are acne-prone. Some people have sensitive skin. Typically if that is the case, then you might be acne-prone. You should definitely have a skincare routine if this is you. Finding the right products and using them on a regular basis can help you reduce or eliminate those problems.

I hope this helps you on your skincare journey. Let me know below in the comments if you have a skincare routine. If not, why not?

For more skincare tips on why you need a skincare routine, watch my video below to learn.

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I won a $350 Ulta Beauty giftcard from my xoTribe! Here’s what I purchased…

Have you ever wondered what you would do if you received an all expense paid trip to the makeup store? Imagine dreaming about makeup and then the next day receiving an Ulta Beauty gift card in the mail. As a bonafide makeup lover, I have often wondered what I would do with a free pass to the beauty store. Well, I finally got my chance to find out!

Ironically, I never dreamed of an all expense paid trip to the makeup store, but I did win a gift card to Ulta! The entire experience was better than anything I could have dreamed. As luck would have it, Christmas came early for me this year in the form of a $350 Ulta Beauty gift card. I. Lost. My. Mind. Now, I am going to tell you how I showed out in the store!

First of all, I don’t know what I did to deserve it, but somehow the universe conspired to answer a prayer for me by sending me this wonderful gift. Fortunately, I didn’t have to wait until December! Besides, everybody knows how much I love makeup.

Interestingly, prior to winning, I had been wondering why my palms were itching. I don’t know if it was my female intuition or what, but I just knew that I was about to get something and I did! Anyhow, I have been hanging out in my favorite chat group xoTribe curated by Necole Kane, creator of xoNecole. While I was minding the tribe business and in my own world, a fun little survey came across my screen so I had to indulge. Between the group discussions, workshops, and different surveys, I can’t get enough of all the valuable gems that are dropped daily. As much as I engage the group, I was bound to win something!

Still, I can barely remember the beauty survey that led me to win the gift. I completed it out of mere curiosity, but I had completely forgotten all about it. Then, a few days later they announced that they had a winner and I was it!

I still can’t remember the last time I won anything. This is up there with asking Santa for a bike and receiving the exact color, size and brand of which was asked. To be honest, I could have gotten $20 and I would have been equally as happy! Instead, I learned that it was for $350! Do you know how much damage I can do with $350 in a beauty store?

Well, allow me to tell you…

As soon as I received my card in the mail, I started plotting and planning. I even took the time to make a list just in case I forgot to look for something even though I knew I was going to peruse the entire store. Despite going through all of this trouble, I managed to forget the list at home anyway.

In spite of it all, here’s what I purchased:

  1. The very first item on my list was the new Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Pen in Dark Brown for $22. I am obsessed with their Brow Wiz Skinny Brow Pencil. I knew I would be equally as obsessed with this precise pen to get my eyebrows picture perfect. Trust me, this is a must have if you want to get your eyebrow on point.
  2. I still bought another Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz Skinny Brow Pencil for $23 to use in conjunction with the brow pen. I am so glad I did, too, because they work perfectly together.
  3. Since the eyes are the windows to the soul, I am determined to learn to master the wing eye look. I chose Benefit Roller Liner to accomplish this for $22. I have been practicing all weekend. I haven’t gotten it yet, but give me time. I promise you I will be an expert. This eyeliner is an excellent eyeliner choice.
  4. Next, on my list was foundation. Even though I use foundation sticks mainly, I still wanted to invest in another liquid foundation for backup. I have always loved Kat Von D Vegan Lock-It Foundation. I am so lucky to know my shade because you can no longer test products at Ulta. Therefore, I was winging it. I got it just right for the bargain price of $37. KVD Foundation is perfect for warm skinned girls with red and olive undertones. Thank me later, ladies!
  5. As much as I love my KVD foundation, it can’t do all of the work for alone. I still need concealer to complete my look. Hence, the reason I got three different concealers to be safe. I am a huge fan of Morphe Fluidity concealer for $10. That really is a good price, but there was only one problem. I got the wrong color. They were out of my regular color so I improvised and it turned out to be off. However, I still got ColourPop Pretty Fresh Concealer for $9. It was a little off, also, but the quality is great for price. The last one was KKW Beauty Creme Contour & Highlight Set in Medium. I should have gotten it in Dark, but it still works for $32. That is high for the wrong color, but the greater value is the KKW Beauty Concealer Brush II for $18. I absolutely love it! If you like to contour your makeup, then you will find great value in this product.
  6. Once I got my foundation and concealer, I had to get blush and bronzer. I chose BHC chocolate Marshmallow Truffle four-color blush palette for $12. It’s the perfect palette for any complexion with its nude colors. Then, I got the Morphe Glamabronze Face and Body Bronzer in Trailblazer for $19. I topped it off with Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed Champagne Pop Highlighter for $38. I splurged, but I cannot imagine not having the perfect highlighter!
  7. I’m not a big eye shadow person, but I like eye shadow. So, I couldn’t leave without a nice eye shadow palette. Since it’s Fall, I wanted some pretty Fall colors. Instead of my typical brown, blue or black, I decided to go with rich purples. I got two Juvia’s palettes: violets and berries for $14 each. On top of those beautiful purples, I plan to top off my eyes with EYLURE London Luxe XL Faux Mink lashes for $11.99. The special occasion kind!
  8. In order to get the look I want, I need new makeup brushes to accomplish the goal. I had to scoop up three three brushes: Morphe Large Duo Foundation Brush for $10, Morphe Contour Blender Brush for $5.45 (Buy one get one free), and Morphe Tapered Duo Blush for $5.45 (buy one get one free). I think I left one at the store. For my foundation brush, I got the Ecotools Custom Match Duo, which includes a flat top foundation brush for $14.99. A steal if you ask me with all the goodies included. It even comes with a little dish that holds three different colors for foundation mixing.
  9. My biggest flex came when I got my lip colors. I tried Beauty Bakerie for the first time and they did not disappoint. The three liquid matte lip colors that I purchased for $20 each are Syruptitious, Sangria Splash, and Cranberry Stiletto. I will probably be going back to purchase three more because the quality is impeccable. In keeping with my purple theme, I purchased two Maybelline SuperStay Matte Ink lip colors for $9.49 each. For less than $10, I think this was a steal! Lastly, I had to get a lip gloss. So, I chose Milani Ludicrous Lip Gloss, Kiss From a Rose for $8.99.
  10. As I conclude this list, I had to include the one thing that I rarely shop for, but decided why not! That’s nail polish. I decided to try OPI Infinite Shine color in Do You See What I See for $13. It’s a pretty shimmering blue with a metallic look. It’s actually pretty cool!

I hope that you have concluded by now that I went over my $350. This is the short list, though! Initially, I had gone over to the tune of $640, but I politely asked the cashier to remove a few items. I still went over, but at least it wasn’t as outrageous as a $600 surplus. All in all, I am extremely happy with my products and I owe it all to my xoTribe! I don’t know who’s bright idea it was to give someone a gift card to a beauty store, but whichever sister it was deserves a raise! Thanks, Sis! Now for exclusive opportunities such as this, you should subscribe to the xoNecole newsletter at www.xonecole.com.

If you would like to get a better look at the products, then you can check out the video I created on my Youtube channel.

Tell me what you think about the product selection in the comments. What would you purchase with a $350 beauty gift card from ULTA? Let me know in the comments below. If you are curious about any of the products, I have provided links to those items, as well. Some are affiliate links and some are not. I receive a small commission on a few products. However, you are under no obligation to purchase or click on anything.

a. https://rb.gy/johghi-Anastasia BH Brow Pen

b. https://rb.gy/idsum4-Anastasia BH Skinny Pencil

c. https://rb.gy/heybxu-Benefit Cosmetics Roller Liner

d. https://rb.gy/fh8too-Kat Von D Vegan Foundation

e. https://rb.gy/rnmatm-Morphe Fluidity Concealer

f. https://rb.gy/05y1dy-ColourPop Pretty Fresh Concealer

g. https://rb.gy/1tp725-KKW Beauty Creme Contour Kit

h. https://rb.gy/kv1tcj-KKW Beauty Concealer Brush II

I. https://rb.gy/xsxfr7-BHC Truffle Chocolate Marshmallow Blush

J. https://rb.gy/lwei8r-Morphe Glamabronze Face and Body Bronzer

K. https://rb.gy/cwa3lj-Becca Shimmering Skin in Champagne

l. https://rb.gy/3qc2om-Juvia’s Berries eyeshadow pallette

m. https://rb.gy/8lblug-Juvia’s Violets eyeshadow palette

n. https://rb.gy/vjrnrt-Eylure London Luxe Eyelashes

o. https://rb.gy/g50c3v-Ecotools Custom Match Duo Brushes (Amazon has a bettter deal here: https://amzn.to/32g7Qwn)

p. https://rb.gy/dtkqo2-Beauty Bakerie Matte Lip Whip

q. https://rb.gy/sdfxu0-Maybelline Superstay Matte Ink Liquid Lipstick

r. https://rb.gy/1m73ai-Milani Ludicrous Lip gloss

s. https://rb.gy/oekxiy-OPI Infinite Shine Nail Polish

Ultimate Travel Bucket List by Age 50

Do you have a travel bucket list? Well, I do and I just updated it as my QUARANTINE EDITION! ðŸĪŠ

As soon as the world opens back up, I plan to dust off my passport and start checking off locations on my bucket list again.

Ten years ago I had created a 40 before 40 list consisting of 40 places I wanted to travel to by the time I was 40 years old. Well, guess what? I’m, almost 50 and I hadn’t come close to reaching my 40.

Quarantine has given me time and perspective to adjust my level of thinking so that I can get back to the things that I enjoy. Travel has always been one of those things.

Therefore, I have revised my top ten places that I am planning to travel to within the next 5-6 years. I believe that when the world opens up, I will have more motivation to travel since it looks like the world is trying to end as we know it! 😎

Just in case the world ends, I want to be well-travelled with no regrets!

Here’s my list:

  1. Santorini, Greece.
  2. Bali, Indonesia.
  3. ðŸ—Ģ, Milan, Venice, Sicily, and Pisa, and Amalfi Coast.
  4. Moscow, Russia.
  5. Morrocco.
  6. Tahiti.
  7. Bora Bora.
  8. The Maldives.
  9. Reykjavik, Iceland.
  10. Barcelona, Spain.

No, I don’t have descriptions or details about these locations yet because duh, I haven’t been yet! However, as soon as I go, I’m going to take pictures and thennnnn write a blog post about the experience.

A few years ago I flew to New York City for a big photoshoot. NYC was a place that was listed on my bucket list years ago. Here’s a link to that experience, Bright Lights, Big City! I’ve been moving at a snail’s pace thinking that time was on my side to travel. When you think about it, it really isn’t. That’s why I don’t intend to waste any more time.

That’s it for me. What’s on your travel bucket list? Share your list, experiences, and stories in the comments.👇

And, if you like my blog posts and want more quick reads, subscribe to my email list so that we can stay connected!

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Best Self-Care Tips During Quarantine

Self-Care Tips during Quarantine
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Are you looking for the best self-care tips during quarantine? If so, I’ve created a list of ideas for you to consider this Summer. According to the latest news reports, Covid-19 cases are increasing in certain areas. This means that quarantine is far from over. As a result, many of us will be relegated back to our homes to sit out the remainder of this pandemic until it’s safe to go out again.

Since Covid-19 poses such an obvious threat to our health, now is a great time to stay at home and practice self-care. Our ability to overcome this pandemic will be directly tied to our ability to seriously care for ourselves and others. I want to give you a few tips on great self-care tips that you can start during this quarantine.

  1. Unplug. I’m not just talking about your cell phones or televisions. I’m talking about your radio, your voices in your head, your social media, your computers, your electrical devices, or anything that can cause any type of distraction. Unplug it and walk away for at least one hour. Oftentimes, we are stressed out because we have too many things going on inside our heads and distracting us from our peace. The best way to take care of yourself is to eliminate anything that steals your peace and joy. I bet when you start unplugging some things and allowing yourself to think clearly without distraction, then you can enjoy the beauty of your space.
  2. Take a hot Pink Himalayan Sea Salt Bath. Since you’re unplugging, follow your peace and quiet ritual up with hot steam and add pink Himalayan sea salt to your bath to release some toxins from your body! Then, just enjoy true zen. Pink Himalayan Sea Salt is good for hydration and relaxing your muscles. This will help you unwind and relax every bone in your body.
  3. Try a clay skincare mask. Clay masks are good for detoxifying and purifying the skin. Clay masks also provide a clear and clean feel of your skin.
  4. Declutter. Self-care doesn’t just involve physical care, but mental care, as well. Clean your space in your home, your office, and your care so that you can gain clarity.
  5. Find a wise man or woman. As you start to gain clarity in your life, now is a good time to seek out those wiser than you to help answer any life questions you might have a need for answers. Find people who have lived longer than you and who can pass along their wisdom.
  6. Pay it forward. It is always better to give than receive. The feeling that you experience after you’ve helped someone is priceless. The reward is often great.
  7. Watch the sunrise….and set. If you’ve never seen one, then you’re missing out on a treat. Find the best spot in town to watch a sunset and a beautiful sunrise. Be sure to remember that the sun always rises in the east and sets in the west. No matter where you are this will apply. Make sure you find the right elevation so that you can get the best view. Thank me later…
  8. Prepare yourself a five-course meal. You don’t have to go to a five-star restaurant to get a five-course meal. Prepare your own. Get your salad, soup, appetizer, entree’, desert, and wine selection. Then just enjoy the beauty of your succulent meal. You didn’t even have to go to Nobu to get that.
  9. Get 8 hours of sleep. Self-care includes sleep. Lack of sleep is an extreme lack of self-care. Rest is the ultimate self-care tip! Without it, you become very susceptible to sickness. If you wanna strengthen your immune system, get you some rest!
  10. Have tea/coffee with the Creator. Wake up early after your eight hours of sleep and beautiful sunrise session and talk to God. Nothing connects you more to the universe than intimate talks with God. Ask Him questions and open your spiritual ears so that you can hear the response. Allow the love of the Creator to fill you with limitless joy and peace.

For more ideas about things that you can do during quarantine, you should read my post 5 Powerful Quarantine Ideas That Will Empower You.

Now tell me what is your idea of self-care? What are you doing to nurture that need in your life? Please share in the comments.

5 Powerful Quarantine Ideas To Help Empower You

By now I bet you’re wishing that the Covid-19 virus 😷 would die already! However, it seems to be a relentless little headache! Nonetheless, we still can be using this time at home wisely by becoming more informed about the world and what’s going on around us.

I have really enjoyed this time at home. I used this time to educate myself and I’ve been able to accomplish a lot that I previously had no time to do. Now I have no excuse and neither do you. I would like to encourage you to use this time of isolation wisely by educating yourself 📖 on a few worldly things that will help you become more empowered under the current global climate. Here are five powerful quarantine ideas to help you feel more empowered and knowledgeable about what’s going on around you.

  1. Educate yourself about Covid-19. This pandemic started all the way across the world in China and speedily made it’s way to the United States by January. When it came, it came with a vengeance. This is why we should be educating ourselves about this deadly virus and what we can do individually to try to stop the spread. The more we know, the more we are able to understand how this affects all of us and not just some. Then we can do our part to slow the spread of the virus one by one.
  2. Improve your knowledge of United States history. It seems that everyone has their own ideological explanation of the history of this country based on their own self-serving biases. Here’s the issue: there are the facts and then there are the stories. Most people tend to base their beliefs and philosophy from the stories that they hear from family, news, and propaganda, rather than the facts. It has all become so convoluted that personal ideologies ignore the facts. In order for us to heal some of the damage that has been done in our history to its inhabitants, we have to take an honest look at the facts. Then we can intelligently argue the basis of our principles from a stronger viewpoint. Only then can we begin to heal from the damage that has been done and tear down the belief that one group has made America greater than any other. That belief is ludicrous and untrue!
  3. Become more enlightened about Black Lives Matter Movement and why it’s necessary. There seems to be a huge misunderstanding mainly within the white community that Black Lives Matter protesters are trying to affirm a superior stance above other groups of people and that is just totally and completely false. The Movement started as the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter to draw attention to the injustices received by blacks in the judicial system and the surge of police brutality faced by African Americans. There would be no need to draw attention to the topic if so many blacks had not been brutally beaten, killed, or mistreated by our judicial systems and police organizations. To ignore the fact of the huge disparity of treatment between blacks and whites within our country is to choose to be totally oblivious to what’s happening right outside your doorsteps. If you’re one of the ones that like to correct those who support #BlackLivesMatter with #AllLivesMatter, then here’s how I can make this make sense for you. I am going to set your house on fire. When you call the police and tell them that your house is on fire, I am going to tell the police that we all have houses and our houses matter, too. Even though my house isn’t on fire, I want to take the attention away from the serious problem that you have just to make my own ego feel better despite the fact that my house doesn’t have a damn thing to do with your very obvious problem! Now, do you see how ridiculous you sound?
  4. Learn more about the voting process, how it works, and how you can be more informed. According to statistics, half of Americans don’t vote ðŸ—ģ. This group of “apathetic” voters is critical to the success or failure of the 2020 election. Trust me, there is a lot on the line. Voting is an American right that we should not take lightly, especially nonwhite Americans. People have fought and died for the right to vote. Therefore, we should not take this privilege lightly. That’s why Americans should learn about the democratic system. Find out when, where, how, and why you should vote. Then, actually, listen to the candidates and figure out why they should get your vote. Exercise your rights or don’t say a damn thing when your quality of life is compromised because you allowed someone who doesn’t have your interest at heart to get elected. Get involved because your future generations depend on it.
  5. Have a candid conversation with your children about humanity and why it’s everybody’s job to take care of the universe, the community, and each other. This is by far the most critical step in making the world better, safer, and more humane. Education starts at home. When we get back to raising our children to be kind, tolerant, and compassionate, the world will shift accordingly. Our world is filled with hate and ignorance that can only be cured by arming ourselves with the knowledge we need to fight the hate.

Contrary to what many may believe, ignorance is not bliss! Knowledge is most definitely power. We have a responsibility to ourselves, our communities, and our nation to get involved in the process so that we can help teach, educate, coach, explain, prepare, train, discipline, enlighten, and instruct others. None of this can happen without educating ourselves.

Here are a few links below that you can use to learn more about the topics mentioned above:

www.cdc.gov

www.coronavirus.gov

www.nih.gov

www.blacklivesmatter.com

www.vote.org

www.usa.gov

www.ushistory.org

Join Our Facebook LIVE Stream: Mental Health Awareness

Mental Health Awareness is an international movement started as an effort to bring attention to mental illness. Recently with the uncertainty of our global economy caused by the unexpected virus known as COVID-19, many people are stressed over the loss of jobs, lifestyles, education, and housing dilemmas. As a result of COVID-19, the pandemic has caused a lot of chaos and turmoil nationwide resulting in increased anxiety. This in turn has had far-reaching effects on the mental state of many individuals.

Ironically, May is Mental Health Awareness Month to help raise awareness about mental health issues that many face and how we can bring increased attention to the need for care and treatment. There’s no question that the onset of the pandemic has created increased numbers of depression and anxiety. Many people are not even aware of the fact that they may or may not be experiencing signs or symptoms.

Meanwhile, I caught up with my long-time friend, Dr. Pruedence Williams, a licensed psychologist, to talk about the effects that this pandemic can have on our mental state. She will be explaining what we can do to try to help ourselves and to cope during these troubled times.

Our Facebook #LiveChat will be Sunday, May 17 at 1pm CST on my Facebook Profile Page: www.facebook.com/PonchittaSashawoo.

Join Our Beauty Bootcamp

As we all wait patiently for the Coronavirus pandemic to dissipate, we continue to become restless while sitting at home. We are trying to help alleviate the pressures of shelter-in-place. We have created a Virtual Beauty Bootcamp to help other beauty enthusiasts like ourselves stay connected to what’s going on in beauty.

Register below and join us for the Ponch Cosmetics Beauty Bootcamp, a Virtual Beauty Spa Day Party!

Join us on Saturday, May 9 on Facebook Live as we bring Beauty Bootcamp to you, a Virtual Day Spa. This is the beginning of our digital series coming soon.

Tune in for fun, games, and giveaways and a few interactive beauty and skincare tutorials on our live stream

Can’t wait to go live with you on May 9.

See you soon…

xoxo,

Ponch

Register:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/beauty-bootcamp-tickets-101749427276