Oct 9, 2015

The cutest dog in Seattle @Khaleesi_GSD

Photo: James L.

I'm one of those annoying people who will listen to a story about your kids, then compare it to what I'm experiencing with my dog. Not only do I embrace the life of a pet parent, but I also believe wholeheartedly that my dog needs an ad campaign lol. A few days ago Khaleesi and I were in the park and approached by 2 photographers wanting to capture some images of us. I was like, "Khaleesi... this is your big moment to be a star! Don't mess this up." Armed with her favorite tennis ball and Chuckit!, I was able to hold her attention and help the photographer get some great shots.

I know everyone thinks their dog is the cutest, but I truly think Khaleesi is one of the cutest dogs in Seattle. She's beautiful, full of personality, has a tongue that gives Gene Simmons a run for his money, and her floppy ears are really working for her. Kinda like a model who works that tooth gap or insanely thick brows. Her floppy ears and long tongue are her signature looks. On top of that, her name is Khaleesi (dopest name ever) and she's basically a real life version of a dire wolf.

A big thank you to James L. for capturing all of these amazing photos of Khaleesi and I. Be sure to visit his page and see the rest of his awesome Seattle photography. Follow the latest pics of Khaleesi on her Instagram page!

Photo: James L.

Photo: James L.

Photo: James L.

Sidebar: Similar to how I got caught slipping back in March when the camera crew interviewed me while I was rocking that jacket with the stain (also walking khaleesi), this time the photographers approached me when I had a semi struggle bun and this unflattering shirt I've been meaning to throw out lol.

Oct 8, 2015

The Queen of Brows: Shaughnessy Keely #SashikoBrowGiveaway

There are a few truly amazing people doing the Lord's work here on Earth. Shaughnessy Keely is one of them. She's changing lives... one eyebrow at a time. I remember the moment I discovered Shaughnessy on Instagram (@Shaughnessy) -- I was instantly blown away and spent a solid hour looking at all of her eyebrow transformations. They were beautiful.

Long gone are the days of Eastern European struggle eyebrow tattoos. Shaughnessy and the Studio Sashiko team are using a feather stroke technique to win eyebrows for Christ and it looks bomb! The results are fantastic and look like you've just walked away from getting your brows "beat to the heavens." You walk away feeling like you have a new lease on life and can conquer the world. Also, you look 75% more trustworthy because you can't trust someone with crummy brows.

As would be expected, the wait list to get your brows done by Shaughnessy or Audrey Glass (who joined the team more recently), is impossible to get on. The last time I checked they were pretty much booked up through the rest of the Fall, each day opening up spots for 90 days out. With everyone willing to fly, drive, or do whatever they can to get to the Langley, BC studio (outside of Vancouver), it's a painful waiting game to see if you'll get an appointment. It kinda reminds me of that one episode of SATC when Samantha was trying to out wait the chicks at the restaurant to take Smith Jerrod home with her... patience is a virtue!

A few days ago Studio Sashiko announced that they'd be holding a contest with 2 winners receiving eyebrows done by either Shaughnessy or Audrey. #WontHeDoIt!!!!! I saw this and was SO excited. This would be better than winning the lottery. This is like being "chose" in the best possible way. I mean, having Shaughnessy do my brows? For Free99? And all I had to do was repost their picture, follow the pages (which I was already doing), and use the hashtag (#SashikoBrowGiveaway)... sign me up.

One of the first questions my girlfriend asked was "Do they do brows for black women?" and I don't know the answer to that, to be honest. I've looked at all of their social media and can't recall seeing a brown face, but then again I don't know if they post the brows for every client they do. Still, I feel rather confident in their work and would love to be one of the first black chicks to rock Studio Sashiko brows. Also, this is instantly a perk of living in Seattle and being in driving distance to their studio.

If you know someone in dire need of a brow transformation let them know about this contest. The winners be announced on October 10th @ Noon PDT. Good luck... and may the force be with your brows.

Added Bonus: Video Review from one of the only brow reviews I was able to find on YouTube of Shaughnessy's work.

Sep 22, 2015

Exploring Life in Seattle's Belltown Neighborhood #627inBelltown

Life has a funny way of speaking to you...

As I sat down to start writing a post about my extreme lack of posts so far this year, I realized that my current number of posts for 2015 was 27 and it made me smile.

"Of course I have 27 posts," I laughed to myself. 

27 is not only my "number" but it constantly bombards me in everyday life. It's one of those reassuring things that I spot throughout my day... like the universe is reminding me that I matter, I'm on the right path, and to trust my decision making.

After making my 3rd neighborhood move in the Emerald City, I decided that I needed to take the molasses out of my ass and finally start writing (consistently) about my experiences. My boyfriend and I moved to Seattle at the perfect time (June 2013) just as the city was starting to bubble up with excitement and transplants. At times it has felt like we're early explorers on the frontier of something new to the rest of the world. And while Seattle isn't a new city, it managed to remain relatively untouched and low-key prior to Amazon's mass takeover. Talk about one company truly changing the entire future of a city...

Fast forward to September 2015 and I've lived in South Lake Union (snoozefest), Capitol Hill (my favorite neighborhood), and now Belltown (it's slowly growing on me)... so I decided to share my experiences in real time exploring my new neighborhood using the hashtag #627inBelltown.

Sunset Views from our new place

I'm excited to share my shenanigans, explorations, favorite places and like always, candid opinions on what it's like living in my new 'hood. I'll also be blogging in hindsight about life in South Lake Union (#627inSLU) and Capitol Hill (#627inCapitolHill).

Finally, I'll be cranking out a few YouTube videos catered to everyday life in all of these neighborhoods and my opinion on living in Seattle as a transplant, black professional, and 30-something. I've gotten a ton of questions via YouTube over the 2+ years I've lived in Seattle, so this is long overdue.

Sep 4, 2015

Vegas with my Seattle Woes

Let's just take a moment to embrace the beauty and true blessing of traveling with a girlfriend who is also a professional photographer. Last weekend I spent 3 days in Vegas with my Seattle girlfriends and had a ball! Admittedly I was running on fumes since I was packing the days leading up to the trip (moved to a new neighborhood in Seattle), but we definitely got in our pool time!

Y'all... can I also just thank the ever fabulous Solange for creating the wedding picture pose that will go down in history as one of the most innovative of all time! While everyone else is doing the most Solange knew to just stand there and be great.

I want to start incorporating more travel type posts into my blog, so there will be a full write-up on the way for our stay in Vegas. I've been to Vegas many times, but this was my first time staying at The Cosmopolitan and having so much pool time. It was a fun trip.

Photos: Leah Blanton Photography

Aug 20, 2015

Thick Neck Thursday: Professional Choreographer Oscar Hernandez (via @Samoarico)

This Thick Neck Thursday goes out to Oscar Hernandez, the thicker than a snicker professional choreographer twerking all over your timeline.

Hernandez has been catching press since stealing the halftime show at the Arizona Rattlers (arena football) game. At first I really thought he was one of the players, but then realized he was a professional choreographer. Still, the way he threw his thickness around, stayed on count, and had technique better than the rest of the team... y'all, he's the real MVP this week. I think this is also a reminder that size doesn't have to limit you in life. He's a big dude and owning those 8-counts.

I danced and cheered in High School and one of my biggest pet peeves was watching folks 1) Not go "all out" during performances and 2) have noodle arms!!! Ugh. Noodle arms and sloppy technique make my skin crawl. Hernandez made me wanna stand up and do a slow clap as I watched him hit each move. And that slow grind/dip? Yep! He did that.

Start the video at the 0:45 mark to see Hernandez flex his dance skills and stay updated on his life force via Instagram.

Aug 19, 2015

"Hell You Talmbout?" #BlackLivesMatter (@JanelleMonae)

Not only is she gorgeous and insanely talented, but Janelle Monae manages to continuously drop dope, meaningful music and move with grace and poise that is both enviable and inspiring. In short, Janelle Monae is a breath of fresh air!

"Hell You Talmbout" is the latest release from the musician and Wondaland Records CEO, and folks are deeming it the #BlackLivesMatter protest song. The song has a powerful message and is worth a listen. Let me know what you think!

Aug 14, 2015

"Straight Outta Compton" -- a remarkable, must-see film (@ComptonMovie)

Last night I had the pleasure of seeing Straight Outta Compton and the movie was awesome! I laughed. I cried. I wanted to stand up in the aisle and c-walk. I felt so many feelings, but pride was high on the list.

I was born in the mid 80s and raised in the suburbs of Chicago, so I was too young to understand N.W.A.'s impact during their prime, but the movie did a wonderful job telling the story in a captivating way. The cast of mainly newcomers allowed me to easily see them in their roles as members in N.W.A. It should also be noted that Ice Cube's son, O'Shea Jackson Jr., did a stand-out job playing the role of his dad. Nepotism was NOT at work as O'Shea proved his worth and ran with the role.

I can't speak to the overall "accuracy" of the film and what was included vs. left out, but keep in mind that they're trying to condense over 20 years of history into a roughly 2 hour film. You can only do so much. I promise that you'll enjoy the movie, find it both refreshing and timely, and walk out of the theater glad you came.

This isn't about supporting black films, but supporting the art of story telling and telling stories that NEED to be told.

A few things I walked away learning (no spoilers):

1) I didn't realize how much Ice Cube wrote! His talent is remarkable.
2) Dr. Dre was gifted from the start and blessed with the ability to really nurture the talent in himself and others.
3) Eazy-E was never a real musical talent, but he had SO much raw business talent, hustle, and personality!
4) Suge Knight was always a dusty ass dude whose only talent was the art of intimidation.

Icing on the cake? Check out the interview Kendrick Lamar (one of my favs) did with N.W.A.

Aug 13, 2015

Performance. Music. Art. #SamRemix (via @iheartSAM)

If you're looking for an event that will flex your artistic muscle, the Seattle Art Museum will be hosting their annual Sam Remix party next Friday, on 8/21. The event will take place at the Olympic Sculpture Park from 8p - Midnight and feature performances, live music, artist-led tours, and some art DIY. The best part? I'll be guest tweeting during the event from the Seattle Art Museum twitter account (@iheartSAM) using the official hashtag #SAMRemix! Be sure to follow along with me as I share highlights from the night.

Of course the event wouldn't be complete without food and drinks, so be sure to come equipped with CASH so you can indulge in tasty treats from Monster Dogs & POP UP (think: fancy, hipster ice cream on wheels). The venue will also have ample CASH bars. 

Note: This isn't an event where you'll get full off the food, so if you're prone to becoming hangry or can't pace yourself with drinks, please do everyone (and most importantly yourself) a favor and grab some food first. 

Tickets are $25 for non-members and $12 for members (click here to purchase).
Use PROMO CODE: twitterremix0821 to save $5
It's kinda like I'm buying you a drink, so if you use the promo code tweet me a pic of what you use that extra $5 on!

I'm currently most excited about the art performance by The Internet Cat Video Festival. I mean, cats x online videos? This is sure to be epic! Seriously you all ... I've wasted countless hours of my life indulging in online cat videos. Those "epic cat fail" video compilations give me life!

Jul 30, 2015

@KidFury & @Crissles coming to Seattle October 3rd (via @ThisIsTheRead)

I've been listening to Kid Fury and Crissles' podcast, "The Read" for quite some time and I am thrilled they'll be gracing Seattle with their ratchetry and judgement Saturday, October 3rd!

The Read Live! will be held in the Microsoft Auditorium at the Seattle Public Library - Central location on 4th. General Admission tickets are currently on sale for $30, while the VIP Meet & Greet tickets are already sold out.

I've already got my ticket and am brainstorming which green treats to bless Kid Fury and Crissles with! You already know the turn-up will be real, so mark your calendars, cop your tickets and get your greenery on deck.

Tickets can be purchased here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-read-live-seattle-tickets-17831029088

Jul 12, 2015

Black/Latino Men needed for "Mentoring in the Moment" @HERESeattle

HERE Seattle will be taking part in the "Mentoring in the Moment" event next weekend in Capitol Hill to connect Black/Latino youth with potential big brothers and sisters. Right now the event is seeking more male volunteers to connect with the majority male kids. This is the perfect opportunity for the professional Black and Latino men of Seattle to take 2.5 hours out of their schedule and foster a relationship with kids in need. It really only takes one interaction to change the direction of someone's life, so any time that can be spent with the kids will be greatly appreciated.

Seth and Eric, two of the co-founders of HERE Seattle, can be seen in the below video giving an update on the event. For more information and to volunteer, please reach out directly to HERE Seattle via their website or Facebook Page.

Mentoring in the Moment Update from Here Seattle on Vimeo.

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