Saturday, June 11, 2016

Offense vs. Love and Purposeful thinking

Good Morning World,

Today we are going to talk about offense. Below I have a couple verses and a short post I would like to share with you. Is that alright?

And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ; Philippians 1:9‭-‬10 KJV http://bible.com/1/php.1.9-10.KJV

Offense

The referenced Bible passage is reflective and confirmation I received on how to deal with an offense, most recently one that happened yesterday. While the offense does not warrant elaboration or another minute of emotional response the text does serve as a powerful lesson that love and purposeful thinking is always needed.

Love. I look at the mention of love in this text and in the context that it heals and allows for forgiveness. That it allows wisdom to permeate while addressing less than pleasure experiences. Also that love allows the heart not to be hardened  preventing clear perspective, judgments and decisions that may spring from offense.

Purposeful thinking. The second component to this is purposeful thinking. When things happen we can choose to focus on the offense or things that are excellent. We do not have to focus on these offenses which can lead to lack of love and/or need for retribution. We can redirect our thoughts and emotions onto something excellent. Onto something praiseworthy.

Wrapping up. I see from these verses that love and purposeful thinking can increase our wisdom and govern the way we handle ourselves, others and situations. The thought that I can and have changed the direction of a negative experience into a positive lesson is excellent in itself. 

So I hope my brief take on offense and how we can change the tide helps whoever is checking out this post. Keep traveling, living, thinking and loving people.

Until next time....

Curly Girl

Friday, March 11, 2016

Make others a Believer

Good Morning World,

This morning during my quiet time I came across a a piece of scripture that defines my drive for 2016.  It comes from 1 Timothy 4:12 that says, Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.

I get so many things from this, especially in this stage of life.  I am unsure if you all are familiar with the writer Shonda Rhimes that is a major writer responsible for the shows "Grey's Anatomy", "Scandal" and "How to Get Away with Murder".  In addition to being a writing success story she talks about her year of "yes."  She talks about saying yes and pushing herself to be great and say yes to being a great mother, now bestselling author, a woman without boundaries, fear and anxiety.  

This desire to live and be great-not the egotistical "Great" that is amounted to material possessions or  fleeting power trips and society driven successes but a greatness equated with living a purpose driven life.  A desire to live a life manifesting the would's, could's and should's.  So what I promise myself in 2016 is that even in the midst of pursuit I will not get hard on myself, let discouragement or the "Yeah, right" stares deter me from pushing forward to my definition of success and my God-given purpose that burns inside of me.  Instead, I will make others a believer and stand as a testament that you can do anything, have anything and be anything regardless of what it looks like in present moments.  

You know why I have a respect and love rainy days and storms?  Because it reminds me all the time that anything can change in an instance and even when we are prepared for the storm or not prepared and brace ourselves, its coming.  Life is like that.  Whether we are prepared or not, the experiences of life are coming.  So we might as well give it our best shot everyday and in everything we do.

This is just my food for thought on this lovely Friday morning.  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.  Love you guys.

Until Next Time
Curly Girl    

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Misfit

Good Morning World

I just finished my morning prayer and reflecting over my life and so many amazing experiences.  Some good. Some bad. But amazing just the same. I say that because I don't know about you but I've always been an active person and as a kid an active "little" person. So being bored would always creep up from time to time. I suppose that is why I've always loved traveling, learning and meeting people. I suppose my ability to embrace change, other cultures and out-of-box thinking and living was also the thing that made me different from my small town upbringing.

As a child I always tried to fit in and be a part of the pack. I tried to blend in into the wall if I could but that was not to be and trust me when I say I tried. I laugh at the thought now as I am coming into my own. I say this in the present tense because I believe as long as we are alive and truly LIVE we never stop growing, learning and becoming who we are meant to be. I embrace my individuality and my uniqueness.  I enjoy that fact and am so thankful that God made me and thought enough of me to give me these amazing experiences and the ones to come. So as I travel around the world and my country I hope that my light and little experiences with me is a joy to you. That I make an impact in your life as you are making in mine.

As always I hope this message finds in in peace, joy and love.

Until next time
Curly Girl.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Life Experiences

Good Morning World!

This is my first post for 2016. What have I been up to? Sooo much. My intent at the end of the year was to get you caught up on all my 2015 adventures however, I have to admit I've been living life had not been dedicated to recording it. However in true fashion I always come back to you because I always feel the need to share. It is my hope that you are living in abundance, love, peace and joy as you read this. This morning I wanted to share a couple quick thoughts I had. You know in addition to my travel side I also am a thinker and these are some thoughts I had when reading a verse in the Bible today. I don't know what or if you have any beliefs in a higher power but regardless I do hope it helps you as much as these thoughts helped me.

1 Thessalonians 1:8

"The Lord’s message rang out from you not only in Macedonia and Achaia—your faith in God has become known everywhere. Therefore we do not need to say anything about it.."

When reading this verse it occurs to me that our lives are an amazing adventure complete with with good times and bad. In our experiences everything that grows from it is used to magnify God and his intricate plan for our lives and the lives of others. It amazes me how the lesson I may learn or experience I may have may not even be for me. That it may be for someone else to learn from me as he uses me as a vessel. When reading this verse I also think about how many of us are quick to point out that we are Christians or good people or not like others. When looking at this verse it seems that our works and life choices should clearly exhibit those things.  And if God is using us and our experiences it means that he is giving us a platform to do his work and have our light shine whether we know it or feel like it or not. I think about how when I was young I went through so many stages. As an innocent child free from worry and ways of the world I lived boldly. I dreamed boldly. I believed boldly. My light was bright and emitted for all to see. As I grew older I allowed disappointments and frustrations to cause me to fade into the background.  I dreamed according to the limitations I places upon myself and what I thought could be reasonably attained. I believed within confines as well and my light while it still shines would dim with pressures of this world. Now I see more clearly that I and we must be bold. Now I understand why he says he wants us to live like little children. Why we must dream, believe, live boldly, emit light and magnify him. We are all a part of an infinite and intricate plan beyond comprehension but serving a specific and individual purpose.

It is my hope that you are having a wonderful day. Thanks for stopping by.

Love ya.

Curly Girl

Monday, September 28, 2015

Shenanigans Part Deux - Fight night and New Orleans

Dear World,
 
I must get you caught up on all my summer time shenanigans. Oh my! I feel as if I have neglected you again. Bad girl!!
 
You can rest assured regardless of the radio silence life has been anything but silent. First off, my concert filled spring opened the door to a carefree summer effortlessly. Summer just glided in my life like an expensive pair of pantyhose. So yeah. That was me. Going into the summer feeling good and expecting to enjoy every minute of it.
 
My first summer stop was fight night in Birmingham, Alabama. By the way, with Alabama as my home you will see many mini excursions and treasures on my page from my home state.  Getting back to the story, current heavyweight champion and native Alabamian, Deontay Wilder was set to fight Eric Molina at Bartow Arena in June.  It was my first professional fight and surprisingly exceeded my expectations. I know. I know.  A fight?  For those that are acquainted with only on side of me one would think that I am either a prissy-conservative, a tree hugging hippie or artist wild child.  Tsk. Tsk.  I am multidimensional guys! As a former tomboy and athlete I have always valued sports especially  boxing and martial arts. Why? Boxing because my grandfather inundated my childhood with stories of boxing greats such as Joe Louis and Muhammad Ali  and martial arts because I grew up watching old Bruce Lee movies.


So you can imaging walking into this arena was like a dream come true for me and the place to be.  Apparently, it was for many at the sold out event as Showtime aired the fight with appearances from celebrities and sports commentators. I provided a couple of pictures for you of the sold out event. 
 


The pre-fight
 
 
The main event. 
 
 
 
Next stop. New Orleans!!!






This is where it all begins
Secret: New Orleans is absolutely one of my favorite cities!!! Who can't love the rich history, culture, and mouth watering food? I have been to this lovely city on several occasions for festivals, micro mini vacations and day trips. My expectations for a great time were no different as I went with some great friends of mine to enjoy the annual Essence Festival hosted by Essence magazine. It is held annually during Fourth of July weekend.  I am unsure whether any of you have ever had the opportunity to go but if you have not I encourage you to change that.  This is my fifth year in attendance and I must say each year is different and has something different to offer.


 
From the moment you arrive the city is alive with people.  You see an array of people from all demographics ready for one thing-a weekend packed with celebrity sightings, stellar performances, informative seminars, parties and giveaways.  The festival usually begins on Friday but for the past few years, Thursday has been added as an additional day of fun.  This year Essence was kicked off with Kevin Hart's "What Now" comedy tour and Trey Songs concert series.  Each day is packed with concerts, events, seminars and street vendors, day cruises, tours and almost everything your hearts desire. So regardless of what your interests are there is something for you. Below are a few pictures of this year's sights through my eyes. Enjoy!    
 


The program for the festival

 
The many concerts...
 


Stellar performances all around. 

Little finds in the Outlet at the Riverwalk
Feeding my sweet tooth
And did I mention the shopping? Inside the Outlet Collection at Riverwalk there are boutiques and national retailers from popular brands such as Gap and Forever 21 to high end such as Neiman Marcus Last Call Studio.
 
The convention center is home to seminars, vendors, sponsor displays, games, giveaways, food, celebrity sightings, free live performances and more.
 
 
Approaching the end of an entertaining and empowering weekend, this phrase was shown during a performance. It struck a cord with me and I hope that it is as thought provoking for you.

 
For snippets of performances check out my Youtube channel.  
 
Until Next Time,

Curly Girl

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Art. Art. Art Crawl.

Dear World,
 
Guess what I've figured out. I am an artist! I know that sounds like an unusual discovery for someone to make. I mean, don't you just know???? Well, let me explain.
 
I've always had a soft place in my heart for all things art. I grew up singing in the church and school choirs.  Spent countless days getting lost in creating song lyrics, various paintings and drawings still exhibited throughout my family's home.  At some point, I developed a strong passion for writing and now have a collection of poetry, short stories and even now trying my hand at book. I took acting classes in college and was even encouraged by my thespian instructors to make the leap from the conservative Political Science major to the arts.  The optimistic realist in me stayed on course.  Nevertheless, I continued to learn.  I learned how to make jewelry and was taught at an early age to sew many beautiful creations by my grandmother. And as most women, I have a passion for clothing and it's been a secret desire to design and create clothing someday.



You see where I am going with this? I have a burning desire to create. Is that not what an artist is? The ability to create something new or different.  Things like music, paintings, clothing, writings that inspire and causes others to look at the world and ourselves differently. Sigh. 





To better explain the rant, I recently visited an outdoor art show called "Art Crawl" in Alabama that inspired me. Some of the pieces challenged me to expand my way of thinking and look at things in terms of the possibilities.  To see pieces of work with elements that should work against each other yet make something beautiful. This show inspired me to embrace the artistic side of myself that I have suppressed in order to climb the corporate ladder. Challenges me to think about my passions and the pursuit thereof.




A person I know jokes me all the time about me being an undercover hippee. Many others recognize my free spirit and passion for life. Who knows?  Maybe I am a bit of both-hippie and optimistic realist but I must say these days the term I most relate to most is artist.



Check these photos out from my recent adventure.






Until next time. 
Curly girl.





Saturday, June 20, 2015

Patience and Contractors

Dear World,
 
I want you all to know that I have THE most amazing friends. Maybe it's luck or that I'm simply blessed but I am thankful. I do not see or speak to them all as often as I would like but when we get together or have the opportunity to communicate it is as if we have never skipped a beat. These individuals are my heartbeat and they encourage me, challenge me and inspire me.
 
From time to time I will share with you the latest of a series of conversations I have with those closest to me. With their permission of course. This is a snippet of an experience one of my friends told me I could share. As with all lessons,especially those of others I always try to learn something from them. I hope this proves to be as interesting for you as it is for me. Maybe someone out there cam relate.
 
"Patience and Contractors"
I've had many dealings with contractors and if you learn one thing it's that you need to have an abundance, let me say that again, an abundance of patience - and lots of prayers to not go insane. 
 
I'm well beyond my breaking point but turned to God's Wheel, some deep "calming" breaths and God's word upon my laptop, OH PLEASE GOD HELP ME GET THROUGH ANOTHER DAY OF DEALING WITH CONTRACTORS. 
 
The so called "Call' we made, has us wishing we had never made it.  From a whole job that was a max of 4 weeks is now past and no where near completion.  Although the monies requested has almost been depleted (per contract). Ha!
 
The first 3 days were fantastic; complete demo of the master bath and off to a good start. The 4th day everyone disappeared, then we get a different team from the company due to them having too many jobs going on and shortage of staff.  The next 4 weeks of were a torturous disaster with different people coming and going not doing the job properly, we had to get them to tear their menial tasks out and start again (even with a 'supervisor' on site).  There are too many stories to go into.  Let's just say God is answering my prayers for patience because I certainly don't know how I've held my tongue this long.  Instead I've put 'quill pen' to email with the mightiest of professionalism dealings. My mind in uproar but my 'quill pen' in professional mode. 
 
One simple task: taking wallpaper out the master bathroom (the only room left in the house that has wallpaper and time for it to go).  I'm still wondering as to why this wasn't one of the very first things they did with the rest of the demo - my head is numb from all the scratching.  So, back on point; the painter came in yesterday and said, "Whoever previously put the wallpaper on did a great job as it's hard to get off, so I want to mud over it."  What this guy didn't realize it that as a kid I used to do this with my Dad.  A steamer and a tool is all that's needed.  With a deep breath and a thought of, "Oh no, we've got another one". So last night I took it upon myself to get my shirt steamer and one of their little trowels,  put my steamer about 4 inches away from the wall and voila' it came off perfectly without a single scratch on the walls, quickly and easily!  I looked at the amount to take off and thought if I was being contracted to do this it would take me 3 hours to get this done. Something that they didn't want to take on and will probably take them more than a day. This morning I showed them how easy it was and the 'supervisor' said he will get his painter to take it off.  Now, why am I having to go through these motions I ask myself, why oh why - who is the professional here? I mean seriously.  This is just one simple story of many. 
 
Moral of the story, if you ever hire contractors pray to God! :-)
 
My friend's story is about his experience with the contractor but we all know the underlying moral of the story. Let's hope whether we are dealing with contractors or some other obstacle that we can recognize that it may be just a test of patience.
 
Until next time,
Curly Girl