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Africa, Happy Kwanzaa, Influencer, kujuchagulia - self determination, seven principles, umoja - unity

Happy Kwanzaa

Busy day yesterday but determined to focus in on my seven principles and reestablish some foundational principles we’ve been led away from as a people.

Culture, traditions are all part of identity. Who are we? Where did we come from? So important. So as we meditate on these 7 principles here’s wishing you a Happy, healthy, long and prosperous life for you and yours.

VillageTalk BY Caribguhl

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Like, comment and/or share if you enjoyed my perspectives.💕💕💕💕💕💕💕

2019, holidays, Influencer, musings, reflections

Giving your Best…holiday musing

I’m readying myself for year end 2018. I usually go through the motions of cleaning. Cleaning everything. I start the process about 6 months prior so now I’m in the end game and trying to finalize all my loose ends to start my new year with certain goals attained.

what echoes most as I reflect is giving. Not just monetarily but of myself, my time, my love and attention. Giving the best of me is love. It doesn’t have to diminish me, rather it enhances me.

It’s sometimes scary but I embrace even the challenges because I usually emerge stronger and yield more fruit for pushing through the tough spots.

So as you each end 2018 and walk into a new year 2019. I wish you all the very best in your challenges and your victories. May your 2019 be happy, healthy, loving , cheerful and Eventful, and giving …as you give yourself as well as others your very best.

Live your best lives today and don’t wait for tomorrow.

Buy black so they can help them so they can help us and we can help each other - simple equation, consumption, Influencer

Webuyblack.com

Commit to buying black as often as you can. This is the only way we can consciously raise ourselves from where we are, to where we want to be.

Artbyken

This is without assistance from Mainstream banks, unless it is a known black bank. Do you know what a black bank looks like? Have you had a lending experience with a financial institution which is vested in you, in your community or your future? Well, that’s an important psychological as well as physical step to take. How do you get there?

Black Banks and credit UnionsClick image to be directed to list

WeBuyBlack.com.

We have to help them to help us so we can help each other.

#helpthemsotheycanhelpussowecanhelpeachother

#webuyblack

#financialstrength

#financialfreedom

#nomoredependency

#amazoneatyourheartout

#blackfamily

#committobuyingblack

#empowerself

#emancipation

#caribguhl

#villagetalk

#shopping

#shoppinglist

#toys

#gifts

#jewelry

#holidays

#kwanzaa

#imblackeveryday

How the enterntainment industry and Music affects us Psychologically, Millenials, suicide prevention

Suicide

MAC Miller

My youngest son is hit hard by the loss of the Celebrity Rapper MAC Miller. I didn’t know him or of him but never never the less..it is a major tragedy in my eyes.

Accident or not..this was an extremely young person with a whole life ahead of him. My sincerest sympathy and regards to his family, friends and associates. May he Rest In Peace.

Hope

Too his fans and my son…this is a valuable lesson about the company you keep and what happens when someone does not take a positive outlook or approach to life. Anything is possible when dealing with personal issues. Always have someone you can reach out to who can listen, talk with you and help to balance overwhelming emotions.

Nothing is ever that bad. It’s all how you look at it.

Reach out

Be kind to yourself and remember those who will be left behind to mourn your loss.

America, Attitude, balance, culture, Living, New York City, News, photography, Picture of the week, Pictures, social Media, Subway

Living Color

My last two weeks

In Living Color feature photo credit

I oftentimes am amazed , fascinated intrigued about all the happenings around me that I don’t get to see, taste, smell (well let me take that back. In New York City I experience too many fragrances…jeeshhhh.🤐

So I’ll post my images in no particular date order but these are all from the last two weeks or thereabout. Most are my original photos. If you use them, please give me credit. Thankies🤗

I’ll start with myself enroute to work this morning…Happy Friday and have s great weekend.🎉🎉🎉

Sorry…this is not my original photo, but it spoke volumes to me. I’d be interested in what it says to you?

I found this little sunflower gem on my way to work this week. Thought if my neighbor Jackie. She’s an avid gardener and she grows beautiful sunflowers.

Early morning commute and this little tike had to drink a soda. I felt for her.

Labor Day meal prep. Caribbean people love their foods. This is Accra, which can generally be eaten with anything and anytime of day but many prefer it at breakfast. Typically eaten with fry bake, or johnny bake, but rice and a choka is good as well.

Homelessness in New York is disparaging. I shot this chap at the Prospect stop in Brooklyn. MTA what’s happening here?

My mom being Vogue I just did her hair😘

Again not an original pic but Trinidad and Tobago, my home country celebrated our 56th Independence August 31, 2018.

Just a kids park in Sunset Park area Brooklyn

In one of my post earlier this week I posted about the heart. I featured this young man in the hat. Don’t know him but he was very kind. Got up and gave his seat to an elderly man. So sweet.

Night shot around The Barclays Center Brooklyn

Construction workers need a shout out too. This patient lady works by the bridge on 3rd Avenue

Stinky garbage day. This is what sanitation pick up day is like in NYC – blocked roadways, lots of delays and traffic due to sanitation, delayed MTA buses and school buses and many people running late for work due to Dept of Sanitation.

Cuteness not🤕

50 followers yeahhhhhhh🔥🔥🔥🔥

Found a shoe I really liked at Payless but opted not to buy it. I don’t need another shoe, but it was so cute and practical 😍

Picture of this whale I found which captures my spirit. I love whales.

Tinks turned 6❤️❤️🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽🙏🏽

Not sure what this was for or about but I loved it. Found it on a family members WhatsApp profile. Tee hee.

My Tinky before heading back to school

Well I think that wraps it up. I hope you enjoy. Have a restful and enjoyable weekend. Just a final word. More to myself….peace unto you.

Happy New Year/Rosh Hashanah to my Jewish friends

Attitude, balance, Blog, Brooklyn, life, Living, Love, Mass transit, mindfulness, MTA, New York City, Purposely Living, suicide prevention, Support

Twenty Five Minutes

Twenty Five Minutes on a bus

Kedella met handsome on her way to work one wet September morning. Her usual commute where She was crossing the highway somewhere by Eastern Parkway and Utica Avenue where she boarded the already packed bus. She said good morning to the bus driver as a courtesy every morning.

This morning was different for some reason. He looked like his life was about to be over, so Kedella asked “are you ok Handsome? You don’t seem to be your usual chippy self this morning.”

This is how she found out her bus driver of 5 years was married, had six children and about to lose his home. All she could say was take it easy and remember the Lord does not give us more than we can bear.

He admitted he needed more than that right now because he had been holding on and holding on, nothing seemed to be changing or improving. He admitted it was tiring waking up day after day, going to work, being dog tired every day, can’t even take a vacation because the hours are necessary to deal with the financial crisis in which he found himself.

Depression may affect

The silverlining? At least this kind lady, a passenger whom he had become acquainted over the last five years. She always had a smile and a kind word. She actually stopped and took notice, recognized there was something different about him on this day.

Truthfully ? He wanted to give up, but this dear lady turned things around by her unselfish act of kindness. She didn’t offer money or sex. There was absolutely zero flirting. All she offered was her time. 25 minutes from her first stop on Utica and Eastern Parkway to her final stop at Glenwood Avenue. The ride was longer this morning due to rain and traffic. But it was just nice to know in twenty five minutes a life has been transformed.

If you only imagine someone is in need of help, be the one to throw them a lifeline. Sometimes all it takes is s few minutes of your time.

balance, Blog, culture, Discipline, Facebook, Goals, Instagram, mindfulness, NASA, Purposely Living, social Media, Support, The Imaginative Conservative, Trinidad, twitter, wisdom at work, wordpress

How Does Social Media fit into your world?

Social Media

I love social media!! Period!

The sheer ability to reach out to family, friends, long lost classmates, and even complete strangers who happen to share similar interests, over great distances, oceans, and even continents. I don’t know what advances have been made in space because I haven’t reviewed any NASA information. But, I will be soon since the very idea of being able to send instant message to space is revolutionary.

Negatives

While I know there are negatives- it can be time consuming, even disrupt interaction With real relationships in our lives. Some even spend so much time on social media, they have no real relationship. Others spend time filtering themselves so you really have no idea what’s real and what’s not.

Positives and Balance

But, it is important for me to highlight the positives and emphasize a balance can be met. Definitely!

Really? Yes, Really!!

I do not start my day with Social Media. That’s my biggest positive. When I open my eyes each day my praise and attention goes to my Higher Power…acknowledging and thanking God for my life, my love ones and all my blessings.

Secondly, I take care of myself, preparing myself for my day, getting chores done etc. if my chores aren’t done, I don’t reward myself with social media.

Thirdly, I take breaks from social media just to reboot, get perspective and just have me time. It may be a week or a few months. Depends how I feel. From time to time I may skip a couple days.

Lastly, social media isn’t all that important for me to disconnect from real people, real conversations and connections. I make a point to enjoy real life daily and not to have technology be all consuming . As Marshall McLuhan author of “Understanding Media” points out in the first chapter of his book :

Beyond what we think we are doing with technologies like smartphones, there is also the reality of what is happening to us when we use them. In short, what happens to us is the social message. This social “message” is also being sent to us at the same time as we use our devices for other purposes. We may not be initially aware of what is happening and how society is changing. But, over time, the social effects of the new technology seep, at least partially, into social awareness. Usually, this happens as older people point out to the younger ones how social habits have changed in their lifetime.

I’m a loner by nature who loves people. Abit of an oxymoron. But that’s my reality. I’m not a social person but I can be when called to be.

Caribguhl-VillageTalk

reference:

http://www.theimaginativeconservative.org/2016/08/social-message-social-media-christopher-morrissey.html

Social media Image taken from the imaginative conservative

McLuhan, Marshall. “Understanding Media”

mindfulness, Purposely Living

ConnectionS

ConnectionS

If you’ve ever lived in a village or hamlet styled community, you will immediately understand the importance of connectionS.

ConnectionS bring us together and reflects our humanity. ConnectionS demands importance of elders, children, leadership, love, and respect in the continuity of life.

Everything is cyclical so without the connectionS we are not able to perpetuate generationally the ConnectionS which bring us together and reflects our humanity. ConnectionS demands importance of elders, children, leadership, love, and respect in the continuity of life, traditions, norms, rules, laws and values.

ConnectionS creates a well balanced, intuitive and grounded community which can then flourish because they are all actively invested in their community and themselves.

Living in bigger cities our connectionS become strained, saturated and unfortunately in far too many cases, non-existent.

We begin to lose value for morality, culture and life. We observe suffering and treat it as normal. Homelessness, distress and destitution are a regular observance in our own families, community, on trains, buses and subways daily. We have become callous and only move to satiate our conscience during holidays, with acts of goodwill. But on normal days we pass the needy without a wink of an eye. We’ve lost our innate sense of connection.

My cousin VB’s contribution:
“what I will say is that back in the day community had it’s negative as well.. too rigid, people weren’t always free to speak their mind’s, perverted people went unnoticed because people trusted ‘pillars of society’ folk with their children…. So there is good and bad in old and modern society…”. Well said and valuable feedback VB. Thank you.

My Aunt Joy Herbert Headley’s contribution:

“ Boom!!!. Excellent. Connections also create accountability which is why our children are not being taught this directly or indirectly. More and more as we are living in gated communities or new housing developments, etc. where people come from all walks of life and generations who haven’t grown up together or lived in the the same neighbourhood for a long duration of time, we are losing our connectivity. It’s a silent epidemic.” Yes indeed Aunt Joy it’s a balance as we can clearly see. Thanks Aunty.

My cousin Donna Sylvester contribution: “Agreed!
and you know what?
As far as ethnic groups we have over the years … Migrated as individuals.
Chineese, Indians they move as groups and that has made it worse for us. It makes us more vulnerable and disconnected from our traditions … As a group we have done the most assimilation to other cultures.” Such wisdom. We have to hold on to our history and culture no matter what. But how do we maintain the connectionS in light of all the obstacles?

My friend Lincoln Roland:

“It’s fact! not much to add as I’ll start babbling but definitely there have been many generational re adjustments that has contributed to this worldwide form disconnect, gradually spiraling itself as far back in the earlier years, when everyone and section was seeking rights and with that in the atmosphere, an infectious over view of things that was observed as ” A MUST DO, SHOULD DO or SAY” has become the ” IF I WANT TO BECAUSE OF CHOiCE I DON’T HAVE TO” also too because there’s much more of what is known as wickedness about and misinterpretations galore incorporated with a dose of lazy; babbling too long.” Not babbling my friend but valid and valuable insight.

We have to balance between the old and the new while still ensuring safety of the next generation and acknowledge the negative impacts around us, not being oblivious. Allowing ourselves to maturate, enrich ourselves financially but keep our values regardless. Teach our children good morals by example and by whom we allow them to associate. Finally, we are a result of our ancestors. Why forget them? Why not embrace them? Learn from their good and bad and move forward with positive energy.

Let’s have an Ubuntu life…I am because we are.

Crystal Simmons

Beauty, Black girls, black Hair, Black Women, culture, customer service, Fashion, Goals, Haiti, money, Purposely Living, Scams, style, Trinidad

Our Hair and Nail dilemma

credit to Desenho Afro Tumbler882ec09d889ac7894a5b72cd5a993b82

Industry

Just imagine my dissatisfaction at the fact that “almost” an entire industry is geared towards making money by sacrificing our nails and hair.

I started braiding my own hair maybe fifteen years ago, prior to that I would go to personal stylists who were exceptional but costly. I started learning how to do my own braided extensions and crochet braids. It was a journey because along the way I observed so much and was so dismayed about the industry trends concerning natural hair.

Community Initiatives Needed

Many black women own salons but many are refusing to bring their salon up to standard and keep the quality on par with competitors in other communities.  Plus everyone else who own services for the black woman,  wants our money, exploits the community and do not provide any services to rival the money we spend.

Asian businesses only resell hair and products, and they sell you anything. The don’t care if it is good for our hair or not. There is no education, just stock. Another prevelant and disturbing issue is blatant disrespect for women of color by the asian business owners, and refusal to empower the community they service with employment. More recently I’ve seen these businesses are in fact hiring women of color into their businesses. Kudos to them but it seems the employment is usually as a store clerk, very rarely positions in management, financials, etc. but it’s a start.  Let’s see some improvement please.

hair-products

I would like to see a vast improvement of this is the Asian beauty salons.   100% of their staff are generally Asians and most are freshly immigrated, barely any English and loads of back talking to customers in another language. As significant as we are to business owners financially, then customer service should be radically improved as well as employment to re-circulate in our own communities.

Personal Experiences

I’ve had to cease going to one salon in Brooklyn and more recently another here in Queens, NY due to substandard conditions, poor communication, hygiene and here’s the kicker, the stylist refusal to stop drilling my nails. I saw a marked weakening of my nails and inquired,  but was told it had something to do with my nails. So I decided to do a little experiment, as I’m primed to doing whenever hogwash is thrown my way, you see? So I went maybe six months or nine without salons. I removed all nail polish, filed my own nails and did clear only. Of course my nails restored to their original strength and beauty. Foolish me, wanting to have the glitz and fancy, went back again and behold my nails started weakening again. I brought it to the owner’s attention and again they refused to stop using drills.

Dangerous Tools

s-l1000

Drills increase productivity and profit. They can work faster and therefore turn over more customers and ultimately make more money bottom line. No one but the health department can enforce this madness.  I won’t get into the negative effects of the nail drying techniques using the acrylics and gel.  Consistent and long-term use of these ultraviolet light may not contradict our original intent, which is to take care of ourselves, look our best but these methods of application and drying may not be the most holistic.  I’ve attached a  link to research and educate on the dangers of the gel method and perhaps other alternatives to get beautiful nails  Potential dangers to Gel polish

But ladies just think about your nails and how much money you are pouring into having acrylics, gels and tips. Is it worth it? Try it for 30 60 days and free yourself of the financial burden of keeping your own nails beautiful – except under the surface your nails are a hot mess.

We just want to be naturally  beautiful

maxresdefault (1)

Our hair is an entirely different story.  The industry has to improve overall. These businesses if they are going to operate in our community have to be vested there as well. Only you can impact on this issue ladies.  Want change and better yet empower your community more.  Start by ensuring  your local businesses are hiring local girls, banking in your community and supporting community endeavors. You will see their true colors soon enough.  We can be beautiful without compromising our natural selves, while empowering our communities,  by ensuring some basic rules are established and followed.

Crystal