Aug 27, 2014

The Illest DJ You've Never Heard @jayilla

People in Chicago have an affinity for day parties. The drinks, the sun, the people... but most importantly the music. Many people have grooved along to the melodic magic of DJ Jay Illa, but have you ever wondered what life is like behind the scenes?

"Don't Sweat The Technic" is a new web series giving viewers a peek inside the world of Chicago DJ Jay Illa as he balances life between his 9-5 and grinding it out on the 1s and 2s.

"A product of the Chicago underground hip-hop scene, he was dubbed iLLaNOise by Chicago legend Twilite Tone during his days with the League, eventually settling on the moniker Jay iLLa aka iLLaNOise.  
As a Chicago nightlife scene veteran, Jay iL currently has residencies throughout the downtown area. He also has a standing monthly event, TGIFresh, hosted at Tantrik and other venues throughout the city."

Being from Chicago I've had the pleasure of hearing DJ Jay Illa spin a ton of times and can genuinely count him as one of my favorite DJs. I'm really excited to get a behind-the-scenes look at what life is like from his perspective. It's also dope to see the overall production and editing quality of his web series. Kudos to him and @E_Seals for putting together what I think will be a landmark series of its kind!

Aug 14, 2014

What Matters in Life?

I had about 10 blog posts in "draft" status, but the #MikeBrown murder in Ferguson, MO happened and everything seemed so trivial in comparison. I wanted to crank out fun, light-hearted posts about hair, dope food spots in Seattle and how poor I felt shopping at Ross, but none of that matters in this moment.

An unarmed man was gunned down in broad daylight in Ferguson, MO by the police and my disappointment is impossible to hide. I wish I could say I was shocked, but I'm not. I'm sad.  It's hard to put into words how tragic this murder is... it's another reminder... another senseless murder of a young, black life... just another "in your face" example of how little value black lives hold in the eyes of the majority in the US.

I am not Kim Kardashian. I wasn't blind to the racism and bullshit black people have to deal with in the United States. I can, however, say I'm truly stunned looking at the side by side images of the protesters around the country and old school pics from the Civil Rights movement. It's haunting.

Earlier today my best friend Lontier headed down to Ferguson, MO along with her BF (television personality Felonious Munk) and their camera crew to provide additional coverage, support, and aid to the city and protesters. Please follow their firsthand coverage of the events via Twitter: @LVictoria_ and @Felonious_munk.

Jul 28, 2014


Have you ever taken the perfect picture that magically captures the essence of everyone involved? We took this picture yesterday after an amazing brunch at Palisade (best high end brunch ever), which was the culmination of an amazing weekend full of friends, food, love and good times! It's awesome to look around and despite any negative things being thrown your way still be capable of feeling blessed. All of us were brought to Seattle for different reasons, but I feel so very fortunate to have met these people and call them friends.

On another note, I'm convinced our picture looks just like a cast photo, so I'm seriously debating pitching my ideas to a network.

Jul 25, 2014


I had the pleasure of meeting Meechy Monroe, Chicago-based hair blogger and one half of the "Monroe Sisters" back in 2011 when we both worked a Beautiful Textures event in Chicago. I remember being struck not only by her beauty, but her warm, friendly spirit. She was gracious, humble, and personable. Reading about her fight with cancer last night struck a nerve with me and made me want to help spread the word and offer support to her family.

Life is SO incredibly short and with each passing day it becomes clear that it's also extremely random. Bad things happen to good people and there's sometimes no explanation as to why. It's heartbreaking any time someone has to experience struggles, but when you see a healthy, young person thrown a curve ball like cancer it leaves you scratching your head.

MsVaughn, Meechy's Sister, is heading up the #GetWellMeechy fundraising campaign to help raise money to help with medical bills and other expenses related to the health and recovery of her sister, Meechy Monroe. If you'd like to donate please click here.

Jul 10, 2014

Thicker Than a Snicker: Prince Fielder

I'm not much of a baseball fan, but I do partake in the visual art of Thick Neckery. Thus, when I discovered the thickness of Prince Fielder on the cover of ESPN's "Body Issue" it made me swoon!

The 30yo "thicker than a snicker" baseball player is repping for the thick necks (and beard season lol) in the latest issue, but catching some flack for parading all of his yumminess on the cover.

Some folks are calling it "fat shaming" but I'm not really sure what that even means... so I'll just say this - - this man looks scrumptious, even with a gut. He's 6'0" 275lbs and THICK!! When I look at his pictures my curiosity was peaked, but when I watched the "behind the scenes" video I fell in love. He radiated happiness and good vibes in his interview... and let's keep it all the way 100 - - it takes a lot of courage to strip down naked and parade your body for the world to see.

He isn't a model. He's not raking in a salary of 24 million because he has perfectly chiseled abs... it's because he's a dope baseball player.

I absolutely LOATHE auto-play videos and I couldn't figure out how to disable it when embedding the video... thus, just click this link to see Prince Fielder's ESPN interview and behind-the-scenes video footage. It's pretty cool.

Jul 9, 2014

Lesson 14: Fear of Flying

I don't know exactly where my flying anxiety came from, but I woke up one day and realized that I didn't actually know the pilots, what their lives were about, or their qualifications. I mean, I trusted that the airlines weren't employing complete morons, but I guess as I got older I realized that I was really putting my life in the hands of a stranger. Maybe I just had more to live for? Possibly my control freak ways? I did read online that most people with anxiety during flight had control issues.

During our stint in corporate housing, I had the best view of Lake Union and the beautiful seaplanes. Like clockwork the planes would take off and land daily, whisking adventurous spirits off to the sky above. I longed to take a ride on a seaplane, but had no clue how to address my anxiety with flying. This wouldn't just be a plane, but a small ass plane (6 seats) on water! Jesus be a life vest.

For my birthday my bf surprised me with a scenic seaplane tour of Seattle! The moment we pulled into the parking lot my anxiety started kicking it. I immediately shut down and withdrew into myself. I knew that I was about to face a huge fear and didn't need to have an external meltdown, but inside I was losing my shit lol... and in all honesty I'm sure I looked like a deer in headlights.

Fast forward about 20 mins later and I had enjoyed my first water take-off and landing, scenic tour of beautiful Seattle, and fear of flying in a tiny ass plane! Y'all... it was definitely an experience and felt so freeing. It made me realize how silly fear can truly be.

As I sat there in that small ass 6 seater plane, fully capable of reaching out and molly whopping my captain in the back of the head, I stopped to truly embrace the beauty of being up in the air, living in the moment, and not scared. It was an awesome experience... and though the first bit of turbulence truly made me disoriented for about 3 seconds lol, it passed and I was back to enjoying the view.

All of this is to say don't allow fear to hold you back from accomplishing something you've wanted to do. Don't be afraid to give things a try and live in the moment!

How-To: Caring for a Curly Sew-in (Using Indique BOUNCE Coil Curl Hair)

I've been rocking my Indique BOUNCE Coil Curl sew-in for the past 3 weeks and I'm head over heels in love. This hair is so amazing... it's actually amazeballs! I remember my girlfriend Kacey telling me that she couldn't wait until I retired the word "amazeballs" lol... but I had to pull it back out of the crates for the sake of truly capturing the awesomeness of this hair.

Caring for the hair has been very easy and I wanted to share my tools and tips with everyone in case you're wondering what's necessary to keep your Indique coils curled up.

Below is a quick video sharing my top tips, styling tools, and opinions on the overall quality of the hair. Enjoy!

Jul 3, 2014

Tim Howard: All American Thick Neck

Living in Seattle folks have been on 10 during the World Cup, so sometimes I've felt like an odd ball not giving ANY fucks. It's actually difficult to find the words to truly express how little I care for soccer. I played when I was a kid, and I agree it's a fun sport to play... however, I haven't really been here for the World Cup. I know, I know... I probably sound like a typical American. It happens.

Well, Praise the Lord because I've finally found something to be excited about: Tim Howard.

The 35 year old US soccer player is drip dropping swagu all over the place and I'm here for it. I don't know his story, am admittedly too lazy to do the research, but was thrilled to take in the eye candy.

At 6'3" and 209 lbs Howard is on the slimmer side of the thick neck scale, but his tats and beard make up for any bulk he's lacking. Hindsight is 20/20 and now I'm thinking I should've watched the World Cup games for potential "thick neck research."

Jun 27, 2014

I'm officially 30 years old...

"Sometimes you have to forget what’s gone, appreciate what still remains, and look forward to what’s coming next."

Jun 23, 2014

Sew-in using Indique BOUNCE Collection Coil Curl Hair (via @IloveIndique)

I've always thought of myself as low maintenance when it comes to my hair, but dropping a ton of coins on a hair weave is the least low maintenance thing I can think of.... however, y'all  - - can I just say how AMAZING. Scratch that, FUCKING AMAZING this Indique BOUNCE Collection Coil Curl hair is! It's the best hair weave decision I've ever made. Ever.

I filmed a quick video showing the results of the weave, how it blends, and my initial thoughts since rocking the weave a few days. Take a look and let me know what you think!

Sidebar: Indique sent me a "mystery discount code" valued at anywhere between 5% - 20%, but it expires at 11:59 pm on 6/27. If you are going to purchase hair from them this week, leave a comment below and I can send you the discount code! I promise you this hair is game changing.

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