Friday, October 28, 2011

In full bloom

 When I was a younger, I had a (delusional) idea of where I'd be at certain stages in my life...married at 24, 2.5 kids by 30, fancy career, making TONS of money, house with a spiral stair case with a piano at the bottom of the stairs. I have never been a huge fan of animals but I would have several fish in a huge tank in my living room.

I celebrated my 29th birthday this past monday (October 24th). I had a lovely dinner with my sister and her other half. No fireworks, cake, or partying all night 'til my feet hurt. I turned 29 and yet the world didn't stop to congratulate me on making it to the last year of my 20's. Not married. Career is (currently) far from fancy. My bank account laughs at the "TONS of money" statement. The only stairs near my residence lead to the condos above me. I don't even have the fish yet.

I admit I spent a few days prior to my birthday wondering what happened. I had this feeling of slight panic questioning WHY I didn't feel successful at all, as if I hadn't done enough. Afterall at 29, people have it all, right? The more I thought about it, I realized my panic was not necessary. Of course I want a lot more for myself in the future but as they would say "I'm right where I need to be".

With that said, I told many friends and family that I wanted to be more daring and bold after a friend dared me to be. As others have done, I decided I wanted a bucket list of sorts. This bucket list would consist of 30  things I wanted to do BEFORE I turned the big 3-0. I asked for suggestions and many chimed in. So here's the list, not in any particular order.

1. Learn to ride a bicycle (Yep, i never learned)
2. Volunteer 30 hours for a cause I support
3. Take a self defense class
4. Run/walk 30 miles a month
5. Do some sort of water activity: parasailing, jet skiing, scuba diving, swim with dolphins
6. Officially start my own company (Born To Fly)
7. Read/perform my poetry in front of a group of strangers
8. Travel out of the country VIA airplane
9. Take a conversational spanish class (I was the only black girl in Advanced Placement Spanish in 12th grade)
10. 10 5k's
11. Submit my pictures to a plus size modeling agency, site or contest just because
12. Blog more often
13. Meditate
14. Visit a gun range
15. Take professional pictures by the infamous Saddi Khali
16. Actually make youtube videos here: JackieONappy
17. Write and publish an article
18. Pose nude for pictures *gasps*
19. Pierce something/ tattoo something (probably the easiest task on this list)
20. Break the rules, make LESS lists and LIVE.

That's it!

Ok ok, so I suppose you've noticed there's only 20 things on this list but I decided, this was my idea and I couldn't think of 10 more things so 20 was sufficient.

I realize the lessons I've learned in my 28th year were all things I've already known but had to be reminded:

Love can be fantastic but isn't enough (by itself) to maintain or substain a relationship.
Most of the "You can'ts," & "You shouldn'ts," come from within. Self doubt can ruin you before you begin.
People will judge you, tell lies about you, and try to break you just to see how you react.
People will dislike you SIMPLY because you have something they want(ed)

The best lesson I've been reminded of though isn't particulary surprising or shocking by any means:

Life is all about chances and taking risks. You only get out what you put in. Be bold. Be beautiful. Be DARING. Life isn't always about to do lists and following the script. It's about getting up and doing IT and writing it down AFTER the fact.

My 29th year's motto: "In full bloom".

I look forward to the journey.

Be daring, be different, be impractical, be anything that will assert integrity of purpose and imaginative vision against the play-it-safers, the creatures of the commonplace, the slaves of the ordinary. ~ Cecil Beaton

I made it!

I survived the 30 days of raw foods and loved it so much, I'm doing an additional 30 days. I did eat fish on October 24th because it was my birthday.

Hmm. I am thinking back on what I've learned on this "diet".

Well....some things were reiterated for me including:
1. I DO NOT like avocado, cucumber, and squash. It doesn't matter if they are cooked or raw, no bueno and no thanks.

2. I have more discipline than I give myself credit for.

3. MOST people will look at you like you're INSANE when you tell them you're eating only raw foods and INSIST they could NEVER do it.

4. For a woman who used to profess to others "I don't like vegetables," I've come along way.

Now for the hardcore results:
My skin LOOKS clearer to me.
I feel lighter.
I rarely craved meat.
I ate a LOT of fruits and vegs and never felt like I was starving
I lost 12.1 pounds during the actual 30 days. Including the 2 weeks prior where i began to eat raw food meals for breakfast and lunch, I lost 19.4 lbs total.

So, i'm doing an additional 30 days that started on October 25....who's doing it with me???!?

Questions/comments/concerns? Feel free to reply

Monday, September 26, 2011

I like it raw

Before your mind goes to the gutter (it was probably already there before you opened my blog), I am talking about food. We'll save THAT talk for another blog.

I'm on a journey for the next 30 days...well, 27 to go, to eat 100% raw foods. Someone jokingly asked if I would be eating raw chicken. With that said, let me clarify. I am eating uncooked vegetables, fruits, and nuts. That's it. Nothing more. Nothing less.

I haven't made this announcement to everyone. However, the people who have had the luxury of knowing this (useless?) information have given me interesting responses. "Why would anyone on earth want to do that?" "Soon you'll be eating grass and nothing more." "Hmmm, and how often will you eat chicken?" "I wouldn't last one day." "Good luck with that." "That sounds like torture." "I need chicken as much as you need oxygen."

I am on a quest to try new things (all legal). I've toyed with the idea of becoming a raw foodist or vegan for years. I was a vegetarian once..for 7 years actually. I woke up one morning and said "I'm going to be a vegetarian" and maintained it. So 30 days prior to my birthday, I've decided to start this journey.

Today is actually day 3 of my raw food journey. Shall I recap the first 2 days for you? Here we go!

Day 1 thoughts in review: "I hate this. What made me decide to do this foolishness? How can someone do this forever? They are crazy. I don't want any more damn grapes. No, I am crazy for trying this. I can just give up now. Maybe the people I told won't remember. I'll eat chicken and start tomorrow. Ok, no, it's all in my head remember? I can do this. Ugh!"

Day 2 thoughts in review: "I want pizza. No, i want oatmeal. I can't believe I miss oatmeal. I want crackers..with cheese. Nope, I just want pizza. I'm over this. Maybe I'm a carb addict. I need an intervention? Why did I say I'd do this again? All in my head. Only 28 days to go."

Day 3 (today): "I really want oatmeal. Who knew I'd EVER miss oatmeal. It's ok though, i'm doing this because I said I would. 27 days to go. I can do this."

Here we are on day 3. I've decided to do this for several reasons. Whoever thinks we NEED meat in order to survive is sadly mistaken. I get headaches often. Some so bad, I become homicidal. No, I've never killed anyone but I bet some of these senseless crimes we hear about daily could be from migraine sufferers. I'm sorta kidding...sorta. As I was saying, I get headaches and would like to see if changing my diet could possibly reduce or eliminate this pain. I also get stomach aches and again, would be thrilled to see a change. Clearer skin, shedding a few pounds, and more energy are also other great reasons I'm trying this "detox".

Some people eat like this everyday...forever. I won't go that far. I am 90% sure I'll be a vegan after these 30 days though but I'll keep you posted on that. If anyone would like to start this journey with me, feel free! I'd love to hear from you.

It's time for some grapes....

Until next time!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

"Don't follow me, I'm lost too."

I grew up with a typewriter in the house. I remember Mom typing away and I can even remember the noise it made as it jumped to the next line on the page. She taught me to type. I excelled in typing class while others were still learning where to put their fingers. We had an answering machine and a rotary house phone.

Fast forward 20+ years. My son is 2 and will see his first typewriter when he googles one. He knows how to unlock my cell phone. He has THREE toy laptops and two toy cell phones. He has also thrown my $400 phone across the room but I digress.

I HATE technology. Hate sounds a tad strong and it may be but it's the truth. I can't stand it but here's the catch: I love technology. I realize this doesn't make any sense but it's also the truth. I entered my first chat room in high school and entered a room full of words and strangers, weirdos, and probably a lot of grown adults pretending to be teens. In college, I joined and LOVED it. Then there was I signed on daily, spent way more hours than I'll ever admit to. Let's not forget instant messenger, AIM, msn, I had them all. I have had the pleasure of meeting many people in the "real world" that I originally met online. Some are still friends of mine and some I have no interest in ever speaking to again.

What's next? Where do we go from here? We are a society stuck behind our laptops, peeking over our cell phones, engaging in conversations while using our ipads, and reading books on our nooks. We cry when there's no wifi and lose our minds when we forget our cell phones at home.We abbreviate words that don't need to be shortened, dumb down our posts so everyone understands and misspell words because it's "cute".

People think it's odd I still subscribe to magazines and buy books. I want to make picket signs and protest outside on someone's lawn (don't get scared unless you live nearby). No one will hear me over their Ipods though so I'm discouraged. My cd's have piles of dust on them and I no longer own cassette tapes. The lady at the register of my favorite clothing store (or grocery, shoe, hat, anything store) asks for my phone number or email address and looks offended when I say "No" and tries to justify why she NEEDS it before I make my purchase. "I can't continue with the purchase until you give me the info," she replied. "I just want the jeans," I mumble.

When we meet people with internet access, we assume they have a facebook page. "What do you mean you DON'T have facebook?" We walk away shaking our heads at their paranoia for being "too connected" to the world. We can "check in" to places for the whole world to know exactly where we are. We get tagged in photos we would never have shown the public.  If there is a "Stalking for dummies" book, it is no longer necessary.

All I'm really saying is: I support growth and progress. I just hope we don't lose ourselves in the process. Writing letters, phone calls, meeting REAL people in it a lost cause? I won't tell you how many texts I've sent this past month (my poor thumbs) but there's NOTHING like real conversation. There's also NOTHING like sending a slightly inappropriate text to the wrong person so be careful.

This blog was inspired by Pitre Braxton. I went to his blogspot page earlier. He had links to his blog, youtube, facebook, skype and twitter. I was impressed and disturbed. I have email: yahoo, 2 aol, gmail, bellsouth, work, and used to have 2 hotmail addresses. WHY!? My favorite man (more about him another day) has 3 gmail addresses. I've never asked why and I'm sure he has others. Today's my second day as I blogger and I am now a "follower" of several people. Twitter scares me but eventually I'll join and you'll follow me (yes, you).

Just be careful out there. Not everyone is headed in the same direction. Not everyone needs to be followed. Look behind you sometimes, there are a few trying to catch up to bring you down. I've learned THAT lesson too. Have fun though. Enjoy yourself but be a little paranoid. There's enough on the internet for me to find you, your first pet and your mother's maiden name.

 The irony of all of this? I typed this entire blog on my android via a blog app. I guess I have to use this technology since it's not going anywhere, huh?

Now excuse me, I have family to visit, friends to CALL back and letters to WRITE. I encourage you to try this novel idea. The recipient will be pleased (no guarantees).

Oh and follow me here on blogspot if you dare..I'm headed places! I'm also on fb, Gtalk, tumblr and youtube.

Ttyl LOL Ijs

~ Miss J

Friday, September 16, 2011

Are we there yet?

I often begin my days simply reminding myself to be grateful. I've been there, seen that, tasted that, heard that, and didn't like some of that but I'm still here. I thank you for joining me. I've been entertaining the idea of a "real" blog since myspace. There's a lot going on in my head and in the world that I'd like to share with you so have a seat. I'm random. I am tangential. I overthink. Is overthink even a word? Probably not... If you've met me, you also know I talk too fast. Regardless of what brought you here, I am grateful you are here.


~ Miss J