Thursday, February 28, 2013

Hairstyles // the Teyonah Parris



I am officially calling this hairstyle "the Teyonah Parris". Styled by the lovely, Felicia Leatherwood, Teyonah Parris donned a fabulous tuck and roll style up-do to the Screen Actors' Guild Awards recently. I just loved the hairstyle and had to give it a try on my hair. I did the style on old, stretched hair and followed the easy tutorial, MsVaughnTV has up. In the tutorial, she used Entwine products but you can use whatever moisturizer and stylers you have on hand. For moisture I applied Bee Mine Luscious Balanced Cream moisturizer and to smooth down my unruly edges I used Nubian Heritage Grow & Strengthen Edge Taming Taffy and a little of the olive oil Eco-Styler Gel on top for reinforcement. I plan to do this hairstyle again, for sure, and take my next time. I was in a rush to finish getting ready for a birthday party so it came out ok but if I moved a little slower, I would have made it look better. Not too shabby for my first try.


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Community Leaders Icon // Brittani D. Chavious




I know I said in honor of Black History Month I would be highlighting black people in the present doing great things for our community until I realized that I celebrate our awesome culture and highlight our achievements every day of the year not just one month out of the year. I am introducing a new feature here: Community Leaders Icons. This feature will highlight people involved in community service projects and programs that help enhance the quality of life.

Kicking off this new feature is Brittani D. Chavious (pictured). This young lady has accomplished a lot in her short 25 years of living. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Tennessee State University in 2009 with a Bachelor of Business Administration (concentration in Supply Chain Management). During her undergraduate studies, she was in the University Honors program and became a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc (Alpha Chi chapter). Brittani is now in graduate school at Wake Forest University to obtain her Masters in Divinity and is a Wake Scholar. If that isn't enough, she is the Chief Visionary Officer of HerSpace, Inc. Last summer they kicked off their first annual Camp Wings program, a sleep away camp program that mentors young girls. I wanted to learn more about Camp Wings and what inspires her so I asked.


AGrlCanMAC: Please talk about your program Camp Wings is about and why you created it.

Brittani: Camp Wings was an answer to the question that we believe many young girls have today, "Why am I here?" This 7-day overnight camp experience is designed to provide young girls, ages 12-16, with an environment that allows them to discover their self-worth, build meaningful friendships, transform the way they see themselves and their future and learn to live healthier lives. We take ordinary camp activities such as horse back riding, zip lining, geo cashing and rock climbing and create extraordinary life-learning opportunities. We expose them to topics, situations and discussions that they otherwise might not experience. We make it real, we make it relevant and more importantly, we especially make it for her. We like to think of it as a tailor-made experience.

AGCM: How can people be involved in supporting Camp Wings?

Brittani: There are many ways that we encourage people to get involved:

  • Be an investHer -  If you want to financially sacrifice for the sake of a young girl whose name they may never know or face they may never see but whose potential they believe in, visit www.gofundme.com/campwings2013 to become an investHer today!
  • Be a counselor - If you are passionate about leading young ladies through a 7-day overnight camp experience of discovery and growth, visit www.her-space.org and consider becoming a part of our team!
  • Be a contributHer - If you have a business,  products, services, resources, and/or time that you would like to share with Camp Wings, please email us at herspacecontactus@gmail.com to discuss in more detail.


AGCM: Name one black person, outside of your friends and family, who has inspired you and why

Brittani: One of my very first living examples and inspirations outside of my friends and family was the founder and principal of the school I attended from K-8th grade. It was not her achievements and accolades that most inspired me. Instead, it was the level of sacrifice and commitment she had to her students, her vision, and her purpose. It was more than a school; it was her life. She literally lived her life for something bigger than herself. That alone inspires me.




Are you or someone you know involved in your community and want to be featured? Please email milan@agrlcanmac.com with the subject Community Leaders Icon and provide a summary of what you or another does in service to others to be considered.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Luv & Learn Your Hair Natural Hair Event:: Taren's Second Time Around

Taren Guy and me at her 2nd Luv & Learn Your Hair event in Harlem 2-22-13


I was very humbled when AGrlCanMAC was invited to interview Taren Guy and attend her second Luv & Learn Your Hair event last Friday night at the Harlem Arts Center. Some of the top sponsors were Hair Rules and Vitacoco and they supplied free samples. With about 600 were in attendance, there was no shortage of great energy, beautiful people and of course, great hair. The event included food, accessory and beauty vendors, a panel discussion, live hair styling demos from the Hair Rules team and live entertainment. Kings Rule Together was one of the vendors there and I'm so mad I didn't make it back there to get a shirt! Guess I'll purchase on the web instead. The food vendor for the evening was She Caters and I swear there was crack seasoning in that macaroni and cheese. It was nothing short of yorgasmic ( a word I created that combines yummy + orgasmic) and if they were taking cards, I would have ordered some more to take home with me. Their fish tacos were delicious as well.

In our interview, prior to the event going underway, Taren explained the meaning and mission behind the Luv & Learn Your Hair event, how it felt doing this event for the second time and details on how she was rocking her hair for the night. I am having trouble getting my interview up here. I apologize for this and promise to figure it out and get it up here as soon as possible.

The panel discussion, titled "The Deeper the Roots", was so involved that they actually went over the scheduled time for it. It was made up of Anthony Dickey of Hair Rules, Michaela Angela Davis, Nakesha of Himayn10ence and three randomly selected attendees. Everyone had insightful opinions. Dickey and Tameka kept us all laughing and Micheala spoke with a lot of passion. Some of the topics covered were "do looser curl naturals have it easier", reactions to our hair and natural hair in the workplace. At the end of the evening Taren made the big announcement that Luv & Learn Your Hair was going on tour across the country and internationally. What an exciting endeavor. She confessed this to me first in our interview before the event started. I'm so mad, in haste that morning, I left my camera at home so I had to make it do what it do with my trusty iPhone so all pics were via that, please don't judge- I'll do better next time. LOL. Check out the brief interview I had with Taren.




I got to meet some new faces and saw many familiar faces as well as some of my friends in my head from Instagram. It's apparent that Marley twists, yarn twists and Havana twists are trending big time. I saw them, more than braids, everywhere and they looked so great on everyone, now I'm thinking about doing some on myself in the near future. You can see pictures of who I was hobnobbing with on the Instagram page and also under the hashtag, #llyourhair, on Instagram to see what pictures everyone else who was there captured.

Many thanks again for inviting AGrlCanMAC to be a part of this wonderful event and I send much love and success to Taren and everyone who was in the building.

Stay naturally fly!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

AGCM Talks Money :: Good Bye Money Growz on Treez



You may or may not be noticing little changes going on here lately. For some of you, you are noticing that I'm posting on here again. As I continue to upgrade the look, feel and content of AGCM, I've made the executive decision to end my personal finance blog, Money Growz on Treez, and move those conversations about money on here. Personal finance is something that is very important to me. We [women] are still are getting paid less than men in our same positions and while that needs to change (that's a whole other post/conversation...), I want us to constantly up our financial savvy so we can have the lives we want with or without men by our side. We need money to buy all the hair care products, accessories, shoes, etc all while building our emergency savings funds and saving for a down payment on a house and/or our retirement. I'm all about abundance so my focus will be on figuring out how to have it all, whatever the "all" means to you personally. 

While I love talking money, I understand that not everyone finds it as exciting but it's a part of life and if you know what you are doing, you can have a lot of it to do whatever you want with it: donate it, buy a brownstone in Brooklyn, roll around in it, WHATEVER you like! It's time for us to stop admiring the rich and BE the rich.   

Stay naturally abundant

AGrlCanMAC is on Instagram



AGrlCanMAC is now on Instagram. Follow, if you like, at AGrlCanMAC on there. If you want a more personal look at me and what adventures I'm on, what crafts I'm creating, what I'm cooking and restaurants I'm grubbin at you can follow me at Creatividual on there. See you in IG land!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Weavalicious // The Heat Free Hair Movement



I found out about Heat Free Hair on Instagram from My Natural Sistas. I checked out their site and love what they've got going on. Heat Free Hair is human hair in our afro textures for weaving. They have the For Kinks collection which resembles 4b-4c hair and the For Curls collection which resembles 3c-4a hair. This is totally exciting and monumental for us kinky haired ladies. Many of us love wearing weaves and wish we had the option to rock hair that more resembled ours, now we've got an option. What do you think? Will you weave enthusiasts give it a try? I love that this is a black owned business as well. Check out their vid below. I so want the model's earrings! (They are the Spaz hoop earrings by Beads by Aree and they are on my March wish list.)

Heat Free Hair Movement
www.HeatFreeHair.com
Youtube: Heat Free Hair
Facebook: Heat Free Hair
Instagram: Heat Free Hair


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

AGCM Book Club // A Deeper Love Inside: the Porsche Santiaga Store



You will remember A Deeper Love Inside: The Porsche Santiaga Story was on my wish list for this month so I bought it and read it recently. There are spoilers in this so if you haven't read the book yet or don't want to know what happened before reading it yourself, DO NOT read anymore. Come back after you have read it instead. If you read the book already or don't care that there are spoilers, then click below to read on.

Monday, February 18, 2013

The New New // Shea Moisture Ammonia-Free Hair Color System



I'm sure you all have heard by now that Shea Moisture has released a hair color system. I'm so excited for them because I like their products, they are readily accessible and at a price point pretty much any tax bracket can afford; I like supporting them. While I am done playing around with commercial hair dyes, this does not thwart my excitement any and I just love the packaging. How cool are the illustrations on the boxes? I was on Youtube recently and stumbled on a very detailed review from a vlogger named BeeUtifully Made. It really made me want to try the auburn color she used but I will just stick to my henna & indigo for my coloring purposes. Check out her video below and her channel, she got a new subscriber out of me.

Right now hair coloring system is only available at select Target locations. Visit their Facebook page for the skinny on what stores have it as of right now. My NYers, the closest Targets to us that have them are in NJ: Jersey City, Hackensack, or Bergen (there were other Jersey locations that are carrying as well). Long Island dames, if it's not far from you, the Central Islip location carries them.

Please note: This hair color system is NOT a 100% natural ingredient product. There are some "unnatural" chemicals involved to raise your hair's cuticles so that the color can be deposited permanently. Please also note, if you have dark brown or darker hair, you will have to pre-lighten/bleach your hair in order for the lighter colors (like the Honey Blonde the vlogger first tried on some test strands of her hair) to show up.


Fit & Fly at Home // Billy Blanks Tae Bo Cardio Explosion





 I prefer to workout at home because it saves me money (no monthly gym membership) and I am more focused-there are less distractions. If you are like this too then you will enjoy my new Fit & Fly at Home series I am rolling out on here. It will highlight all things around working out from home: different workout DVDs, exercise routines, equipment, etc.

When I was on my fitness P's and Q's, I loved Billy Blanks' Taebo workouts. All the previous ones I had though were when VHS was still poppin (eek!) so needless to say, I have to rebuild my Taebo collection. One of the workouts I kicked off rebuilding the collection with was the Billy Blanks Tae Bo Cardio Explosion workout.

For someone who had fallen off the wagon and was exercising sporadically all throughout 2012, I thought I was still in good shape. The first time I did this workout, I was struggling after 15 minutes in and there were 30 more to go until it ended. Now that I've done it a few times regularly (normally every Sunday morning), I'm getting my stamina back to where it used to be. My stamina has increased since that first time so now about 30 minutes in I start tiring out. It's a good total body cardio workout working the arms, legs, abs, glutes, etc. I like it. 

The intensity is high but I just take short water breaks when I need to, while the workout keeps going, and then I jump back in. If that's not enough, press pause whenever you like to take a breath. Is this Billy's most intense of workouts? I don't think so but it's no workout for slouches either. It will get you moving and your heart rate up. If you like kick boxing you will probably like Taebo workouts so keep that in mind with what kind of activities you like to do.

If you are new to exercising, you may not want to try this until you have increased your stamina/fitness level some. Remember, always consult with your general physician first before trying any new workout if you have concerns or questions. 

Stay fit & fly!


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Fit & Fly // Making Fitness a LIFESTYLE



  As I continue on my grown n sexy journey, I am noticing that I have to put in effort to stay great. I HAVE to exercise now, whereas I didn't really have to before. I am no stranger to a fit lifestyle though, in my high school days I was a sprinter and high jumper on the track & field team and I also practiced Taekwondo. In my college years I danced, was on the Black Student Union step team and later my sorority's; Sigma Gamma Rho, step team and worked out at the campus gyms. Post college, I would go on exercise binges where I was consistent and good and then I would fall off for a bit and then a few months later get back and it was like I never left. I'd say after I turned 27, I noticed my metabolism changing slightly. While I am not overweight, I definitely can't eat whatever I want and not exercise for months at a time and not see the number on the scale increase or my energy decrease. Fitness has taken on a new meaning to me, I am no longer viewing it as a fun past time or activity as I did in my younger days. I now view fitness as a part of my lifestyle and not just a 6 months at a time roller coaster ride that I hop on and off of at will.

I slacked off big time last year when it came to exercising so I saw the the scale jump to a number I didn't like. I also saw my stomach was not as flat as it used to be. While I'm not overweight, I don't want to let negligence get me to that point either. Why not take preventative actions now while it's not a problem? I'm all about being proactive so I bought some workout DVD's and Pinterest has helped me create some great at home workout routines using nothing more than basic exercises like jumping jacks and resistance bands. I have a stability ball too that I will be using a lot more. You don't need a gym membership, personal trainer or fancy workout equipment to get started, I can't stand the gym and prefer working out at home or on the track.


Kettlebells are on my home fitness workout wish list.

I simply want to stay healthy, have more energy and have a bangin body to boot: toned body, shapely booty and my 4 pack abs back. I want to be my best self. I'm going to document my fitness journey on here and share routines I've tried and use, workout DVDs that I'm liking and anything else. I will share body shots so I can document my progress and talk about what I'm eating too. I already know that I've been consuming too much sugar as of late, I've got to pump the breaks on that so I stopped keeping the house stocked with sugary snacks, cookies or brownies. Now if I want something sweet, I drink some tea sweetened with 1 teaspoon of agave nectar. 

Are any of you finally making fitness your lifestyle and not just an "activity" too? What steps are you taking to be healthier? 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Fitness Inspiration: Angela Simmons

Images from AdoreAngela.tumblr.com


As we prepare to gorge on fattening finger foods and snacks ala Super Bowl parties, I share with you one of my fitness inspirations. My fitness inspiration and fit physique twin is Angela Simmons. I have loved her personal style for quite some time now and I also love that she is about that fit & healthy life. I like her physique because it looks a lot like mine, it's not shredded, she just has a nicely toned and fit body which is how my body normally is. My stomach isn't as flat as it used to be and it is because I slacked off big time when in came to exercising last year so I am getting back into the groove (for GOOD this time) and her stomach is how mine used to be before the slacking off went down. I don't want to compete so there is no need for me to be super  muscular and ripped or have my body fat percentage really low. I just want to be healthy and keep everything tight and toned. No jigglin baby. ;)

I think it can be helpful to have someone who is your fitness/body inspiration because, it helps you to define what exactly you want and have a visual of it to keep you pumped and excited. The visual aid gets you to see what your body could look like if you focus and do what needs to be done to attain it. It's not a rule but try to pick someone who is similar in shape and height as you, this will make the vision feel more believable. If the person isn't similar enough, you may get discouraged and of course that may happen if they're body is totally different than yours. The goal is for your inspiration to feel attainable to you, you have to believe it and feel good about it so that you will have it.  It's good to look at your inspirations daily, if you can, because it will motivate you, keep you excited and attract the situations and actions you need to take to get there. Visualization and believing is powerful and will get you whatever you want.

Who is your fitness inspiration and why? What are your fitness and physique goals for this year?

Saturday, February 2, 2013

February Wish List





1. A Deeper Love Inside: The Porsche Santiaga Story- This is the sequel to The Coldest Winter Ever and it picks up where TCWE left off. It shifts to Porsche's, Winter's little sister, perspective in this one. TCWE is one of my favorite books to date so I can't wait to read this.

2. The "La Marquise" cat eye in tortoise by Bon Look- Their glasses are chic, great quality and so affordable. I own the "Honey Badger" cat eye from them and love it to bits. Can't wait to add these puppies to my collection. Can we say my insurance is paying for them? Thank you! *high five*

3. High Top Sneaker Wedges- I'm finally ready to get a pair. This pair from Target are pretty cute. Is it bad that I don't want to pay $35 for a pair of sneakers from Target though? $35 isn't a lot of money....but it's Target.... Lol.

What's on your wish list for the month?

Friday, February 1, 2013

It's Black History Month



It's that time of the year again, Black History Month. All month I will be writing about our contributions to the advancement of our community and society. I will also be sharing any good books, videos, documentaries, exhibits, etc that will support this theme of knowing, preserving, celebrating and giving gratitude for our history. I will acknowledge and give thanks to those before us but I want to focus a lot of my efforts this month on those of us that are doing great things right now. I will not be celebrating celebrities, I want to highlight everyday people in our community on the front line, in the mix, making things happen. No one or no race is perfect, but we have come a long way and I'll say it loud, "I'm Black and I'm proud!"

My Heavenly Closet Giveaway



Happy Friday! We made it to another weekend, Super Bowl weekend. Lol. I recently became the brand manager for my sister's new accessories boutique, My Heavenly Closet. They are hosting their first giveaway contest for this bag. If you like bags, I would really appreciate it if you show us some love and enter the contest on our Facebook page: My Heavenly Closet. Make sure you read the guidelines carefully, you have to do more than just like the page. Thank you for your support and wishing you all a fabulous weekend!

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