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Be Blessed

My church had a profound women's conference a few weeks back with the theme of "Moving Forward in God." All of the workshops focused on how we as women can continue to move forward in our faith and in our lives. I say all this to say that this is a hard thing, to make changes in your life and actions that are a reflection of God and the person you truly want yourself to be. For some people personal change comes easily, while for others like myself it takes a bit more time. I mean, I need all the encouragement I can get on a day-to-day basis.

I want to share something that I read in an email this evening and found encouraging. I am not a chain email forward-er or anything (I made that title up) but when I see something profound I love to share. All I ask is that you read it and if it has an impact on you then continue to share it with others and do your best to demonstrate it in your daily lives as best as you can. Like Ghandi said, be the change in the world that you would like to see. Me personally, I know I'm struggling hard to work on myself!

Have a beautiful week people :)

Grace-Filled Speech
READ: Titus 2:7-8

Words are powerful. Harsh remarks can cause a destructive chain reaction, like a match in the forest during a drought. Kind comments feel like a light summer rain that brings relief from the heat of day. We can know our words are the refreshing kind—seasoned with grace—when . . .

• Our tone and manner reflect the way we want others to speak to us. Talking pleasantly should not depend on whether others are kind with their words. Grace-filled speech consistently uses a gentle voice and positive body language.

• What we say about others is similar to what we would want said of us. All of us hope to hear our weaknesses minimized and our strengths emphasized—and to be given the benefit of the doubt in confusing situations.

• We speak only words we know to be true. Gossip and lies have no place in a Christian’s conversation. The Lord opposes lying tongues and false witnesses (Proverbs 6:16-19).

• Our speech is edifying. Speaking fairly and positively of others is part of godly speech.

Transforming our conversation begins on the inside with the right heart attitude. As we saturate our minds with the Word of God, our hearts will soften, and we’ll begin to respond differently. Through the Holy Spirit, we will be convicted of times when our speech is inappropriate. He will teach us to be more aware of what we say and to stop ourselves before we speak amiss.

God will be glorified and others will be blessed when we practice grace-filled speech.

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A Must See

Ya'll better go see this man's movie. I saw it last night with Monsieur N and we already can't wait for it to be out on DVD. It is absolutely, positively fantastic. It will make you laugh, make you cry, and inspire you all at the same time. Single people, those in relationships, and married folks all need this movie in your life. And it sure is great to support someone who is bringing some change to Hollywood.
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Me and TV

Growing up, there was a rule in my house. Actually there were many rules in my house - because as long as I lived under their roof I had to follow their rules. And, there were many days that I thought that my parents were out to ruin my life with these rules. However, there was one rule that really affected my habits for years to come.

Rule #143: Until you pay bills, there will be no watching of the television on a school night

This wasn't as bad for me growing up as many people think. We didn't get cable for a long time, anyway, so it wasn't like I missed out on much. But I was also one of those kids whose parents never needed to ask, "What do you have for homework." I was the kid who said, "Mommy, did you check my homework yet?" She recently admitted to me that she hardly ever even checked the assignments, only signed, because she knew it was probably right. Thus, television wasn't so much of a priority to me until later in high school when I started loving various shows. Even then, the demand of my workload hardly allowed me to watch TV.

Flash forward to college. It was the first time in my life that I (1) had my own TV and (2) got one in my room. For the first year, it was almost as if it wasn't there. I used it to watch Oprah. I can't remember watching much else. I have always grown used to listening to music whenever I'm in my room; therefore, a stereo or my computer was all I ever needed.

Well, over the last three years I've fallen into network television's boobie trap. Commercials as well as some of my dearest friends have wooed me into watching television, one great show at a time. I still watch less TV than most people I know. I don't think I'll ever be that person who turns on a TV as soon as I walk in a room - like Monsieur N, who has my television in his room since I hardly use it anyway. But there are certain shows that I love to watch, even need to if I've had a rough day.

I present to you
Mademoiselle M's list of favorite television shows

Oprah Winfrey Show
This here is my gurrrl. She don't know me yet but we may as well be best friends like her and Gayle King. I've never been the type to be like OH MY GOD, THERE IS P.DIDDY. I'LL JUST DIE IF HE COMES OVER HERE. I mean, after all, celebrities are just people too. But if I met Oprah... omg. I think I would be speechless. There is so much I would love to talk to her about, to ask her... She's is one of the most inspiring people in the world and I have so much admiration for the woman. On top of that, her show is great. She has her days when I'm like, "why are we talking about this Oprah?" But most of them are great; just looking at how long it has been on the air and remained a force on network television is amazing. This is the only celebrity I would truly love to meet (as in MEET, meet) in my lifetime.

Law and Order
Let's just say that this is where the TV junkie in me came out. This was one of those shows that a friend of mine used to watch way back (I'm old people) in high school but I could never get into. During my second year in college, I was living in the freshmen dormitory - due to a leadership role I was in and it was not an RA position - and so I wasn't spending as much of my time hanging out in other people's rooms as before. This led me to put on my TV a lot more than ever. Well, USA TNT and TBS always play Law and Order. Somehow.. I'm still not quite sure how it happened... those channels became the default channels for my TV. I was hooked. Anytime I needed a mental break or time to myself I'd turn on Law and Order. I would eventually get hooked to watching Bobby on Criminal Intent. He's crazy. Every show we learn something new about him. The way he solves his cases are just insane... he has funky psychological tactics that bring down the criminal every time. Gotta love him.

Ugly Betty
Oh man, Betty cracks me up. This girl is the most unfashionable person in the entire world's imagination who could work for the most premiere fashion magazine ever known to mankind. That's just my opinion. But she is fantabulous in her very own way that not even people at Mode (think Vogue) can find the heart to dislike her. She has big dreams, a big smile, and a great big personality. She's a real person in a world that is full of pretentious and shallow people. She keeps it real and breaks it down when you need it most. Plus, she's got your back through it all. What's not to love about that?

America's Next Top Model
So I plan on growing another 5 inches by 25 so I can become a model. And in preparation for that, I watch ANTM so that I can be as divalicious as Tyra. You think I'm joking? Hmph. Then I refuse to say anymore.

Grays Anatomy
I started watching this show last fall. There would be evenings that I'd be hanging out in various friend's rooms and at 8 o'clock (on thursdays), all things became silent except for the TV. I've hardly ever seen people react like that for a show but I found myself slowly transforming into them as weeks went by. It's a terribly addictive show with a fantastic plot and talented actors. Did you know that it is written by a black woman? Her name is Shonda Rimes. So I'll definitely keep watching for as long as it's on.

Jack is a G. Really that's all there is to say about the star of the show. I started watching a few years ago when my parents kept ranting and raving about it. Finally I got Monsieur N hooked and it's become one of those shows we always watch together. Even when I was in France we would watch it together via webcam... "MAN did you see that!?" Some people say that the show isn't as great as it used to be. Well I haven't been watching since its inception so I can't really judge that but I do know that this show is off the hook. It is a fast-paced and action-packed show that constantly keeps you on the edge of your seat and counting down to the next week (or in this case, hour).
Notable Mentions

While these shows aren't must sees for me, I definitely will watch them if they happen to be showing those days I randomly turn on the TV.

House: (Fox) This used to be one of those must see shows but while I was in France I wasn't able to watch it very consistently online (it's hard to find recent TV shows online while abroad cuz they don't let you watch it on the network's website if you are not in the US...). Now I feel like I've missed out on a lot so I don't pay attention to when it's even on. It's a great show that my mommy got me hooked on and she still watches to this day.

The Game: (CW with Tia Mowry) Monsieur loves this show and he's always making me watch it. Now I like it but I still only watch it when he has it on.

Girlfriends: (CW) This used to be one of my favorite shows. But, like House, I missed so much while I was away. This was an impossible show to find recent episodes of online. I've heard that it is so different now. Some say they don't even like it anymore. Maybe I'll turn on my TV one of my least busy Mondays and see what it has become.

Big Shots: (ABC) This shows after Grey's Anatomy. If there was ever a male version of shows like Sex and the City or Desperate Housewives, this would be it.

Private Practice: (ABC with Taye Diggs and red-head from Grey's) I just watched this show for the first time last Wednesday. I really liked it and I can't really describe to you why just yet. I do know that it reminds me of the show Strong Medicine that used to show on Lifetime. My sister had me hooked on that show way before I was hooked on most of these others I mentioned in this post.

The Boondocks: I don't even know if this shows on TV anymore but I like it because I like the comic strip. He's controvertial cuz holds nothing back . I guess that's what I like.

What are your favorite shows? What channel and what time... ? cuz I need to work on using my procrastination time better.
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HU, the HBCU

HU's homecoming is a wrap. It was a busy and hectic week but it’s all over. I went to every event being that it is my final homecoming as a student here. The best part of it all is that I sold two extra step show tickets and one extra R&B concert ticket and made back the money I spent on my own tickets! And while I enjoyed myself very much, ever since my first experience I’ve said that Howard’s homecoming is a bit overrated. I won’t lie… with all the people who come and all the events that go on, everything is definitely hype. But the events really aren’t all they crack up to be. After four years, I still hold that to be true.

The gospel concert was great but it has been better. The HU Gospel choir was off the chain and probably the best part even though they weren’t the headliner. It was the former SWV singer, Coko. Her voice is very beautiful but I was left wanting more after her performance.

The comedy show was pretty funny. However, I wasn’t too satisfied with George Wilborn – the final act – cuz he was a bit much for me (lots of cursing). I’m not sayin he wasn’t funny, he just took it too far sometimes.

The fashion show was trĂ©s fab – including the “guys” working it in stiletto heels (Ms. Js in the making?). An up and coming artist named Janelle Monae performed. She’s got a really funky style that I’m liking and a fantabulous voice. Check her out. She sang some songs with OutKast for Idlewild. Matter of fact, her style makes me think of Andre 3000.

The R&B concert was a bit of a disappointment. Apparently there were contract issues with Tank (which I didn’t find out till after the fact) and we were left waiting outside in line.. in the rain. All of the other shows had started exactly on point so this was frustrating for us. Plus if you know anything about HU homecoming events, you know that people start lining up hours before the doors open. Let’s just say that many people were NOT happy. When we finally got in I was great until Chrisette Michele decided to sing three songs and leave the stage! That left me with Tank for the rest of the show. I don’t really know his music. On top of that, his performance was annoying me; and Mlle. V and I have a theory that he is on the DL…. i.e. how many straight men wear deep V-neck shirts? But whatever. It was a decent show in total.

I went to Zanzibar on Friday night to see Machel Montano. I went with my sister, her friends, and Monsieur N. We sipped a few drinks and danced all night. Fun times.

Lift Every Voice and Sing

Saturday I went to the game and watched my dear Bisons get their butt kicked by the Aggies for the first half, watched the half-time show, leave to go out on the yard, and later hear that we scored two touch downs and won the game! …an AMAZING feat for our team. Oh and I love homecoming also because I can get funnel cakes on the yard. I had about three over the entire weekend!

The step show was hosted by Fonzworth Bentley, which was entertaining. Aside from that.. whew… the show was definitely something. Let’s just say that the “war” between the Deltas and the AKAs is something serious when it comes to the step show. These girls are all so fierce and precise with everything they do on stage. But this year there was no denying that the Deltas put.it.down. I looked on Youtube but no videos seem to be up yet. They are worth searching for later this week though!

In all, what does homecoming really do for me? It reminds me why I love going to a Historically Black College/University. There is no experience like it. Nowhere. Ever. I never intended to attend a HBCU but I've learned that I am here for a reason. These four years will be incomparable to anything else I experience in my life. And for those of you who didn’t have the opportunity to attend one - whether it’s the beloved Hampton Institute*, Spellman, or wherever - I hope that you have (or have had) the opportunity to live vicariously through somebody else who is attending/has attended one! By no means am I saying that your experience isn’t/wasn’t valuable somewhere else; I’m just saying that you definitely missed out on something great.

*I had to add that in for you Jameil!

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Man, oh man. I was having some kinda train of thought just now. For many of us, everything is a bit hectic but it’s nice when you have those pieces of joy in your life to hang on to. So I decided I need to share.*

I am just lovin Kanye’s new CD. I know it’s not so new anymore but I’m still playin it like it is…. Goodmornian!

Now I can play the CD on my new iPod nano I got for my birthday from Monsieur N. He’s so great with surprises. He had slipped it in my purse on Sunday and I didn’t even see it till I walking into church! I’m so excited because when Apple came out with the video a couple years back I had mentioned I would love a smaller version to it… and whaddayuh kno? Oh and I bought a new skin for my super-dupa-fly MP3 player. Isn't it cute?
As you know, J’adore Chrisette Michelle’s album. So you can imagine that she has much play count on my new iPod. Well, rumor has it that she will be at the R&B concert this Friday (HU homecoming). OMG. How exciting!? I don’t ever need Tank to come on stage. Matter of fact, they could save their money right now and let her perform the whole CD and call it a night. Hmph.

Sidebar: Let me know if any of you are looking for a ticket. I still have one left to sell...

Speaking of homecoming, I can finally begin enjoying the festivities (a bit more) since I have no more interviews for a few days. Granted, I’ve gotten a $#@& load of work to do by next Wednesday BUT I’m living in the moment, taking one day at a time.

And speaking of jobs, I’m glad I don’t have to have to find a job on campus. I’m so happy to be back working at WHUR. I’ve been there in the business office since June of 2005 – minus the time spent interning and studying abroad. After working in corporate for two summers, it’s a beautiful thing to work with an ENTIRE office of beautiful black people about their business. I feel at home. Too bad I don’t see a career happening for me at the station.

Oh and last but not least… this one is unrelated but I just HAVE to share with you!!! My cousin gave birth Tues night to a beautiful 7lb (??oz) baby girl!! I cannot wait to start having kids.** She's absolutely, positively the most precious thing ever. At least until I have a baby.

So what’s on your mind?

*NO- these are not the only things that bring joy to my life!
** Meaning that I cannot wait until I’m ready to have kids
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Vegas Pt. 2

I'm back... thank you for your patience kids!

Saturday we decided to pretty much go with the flow. One of my friends was really gung-ho about going to Rainforest Cafe so that's what we ate for lunch (we missed breakfast obviously). Afterwards we decided to take a walk down the strip, take in the scenery, check out other hotels, stop by the half-price ticket booth to find cheap show tickets, and.... dum dum dum... take a stripper class.

OMG, it was soo much fun. Stripper 101 is taught by a professional Vegas stripper. It is some serious stuff. Here is a brief lesson of the lap dance portion of class. Be sure to follow each step carefully:

1. Place your man on a chair and pull his hips toward the edge of the chair; be sure to tie his hands up (using handcuffs, panties, etc.) or make him sit on them... there is absolutely NO touching!

2. Stand in front of him (facing him), bend over, and introduce him to your boobies

3. Do some dancing and teasing in front of him (demonstration was given)

4. Use your leg (front of calf) to tease his pin-yah-TAH*

5. Take off your clothes like a stripper (demonstration given)

6. Mount the lucky man, placing your cookie to his pin-yah-TAH

Yea, so we had fun times. We also learned some pole dancing techniques. She is amazing and I must say that I did a pretty dern good job. But I can't put up pics. I'm a professional gal and I don't want a little trip to come back to haunt me ;)

Afterwards we walked around the rest of the Miracle Miles Mall (where the Stripper 101 class is held). H&M was by far the hottest store. There was a great DJ and a line with two "bouncers" just to get in! We didn't even want to leave. After spending a couple hours in the mall it was dark out (hence the fabulous pic taken outside the mall) and we did our last bit of walking the strip by checking out the Bellagio hotel. I love love LOVE the water show. and I love LOVE love the gardens inside... soooOOoo puurrrty. One day I will have enough money to afford staying in such a beautiful hotel... or own one. *sigh*

That night we had big plans to go out. Unfortunately, we put on the Disney channel (we don't have that channel at HU and we had some Disney channel junkies), changed out of our clothes, and crashed.

Sunday morning (more like afternoon) we took the Deuce double decker bus to the end of the strip into downtown Las Vegas for a champagne brunch. After taking about 24 hours for the bus to make it through the traffic, we stuffed ourselves senseless. We then split up because we all wanted to see different shows that night and we had to go to separate hotels to pick up tickets. Three went to see the Russian show, ICE; two went to see the Chippendales show; and me and another girl went to see Stomp. It is an amazing show. These people are so talented, making music out of keys, pipes, boxes, oil drums, their hands and feet, and so much more!

That evening, we all met back up at the Venetian (my second favorite because it really did look like Venice!) to eat at Tao. The restaurant was really good. I bought a drink that was way too much money but oh so great. I'm stealing the mix. Have I ever told you that I wanna be a bartender at a really classy place so that I can make fabulous drinks for my parties that I host when I have a job and I'm fabulous? I'm still gonna be fabulous and make fabulous drinks even though I'll probably never be a bartender. Anywhoo, we can talk about that later.

Afterward, we headed back to our rooms and got dressed to Par-taay. We went back to the Palms hotel and closed the night out in a club on the top of one of the hotel's towers while looking out on Las Vegas.

What seemed like a few hours later, we were saying goodbye to the Greatest City in Las Vegas and on a plane back to DC. In a matter of hours my realities changed. I'm back to homework, exams, interviews, and stress. As mama says, "such is life m'dear!"

*vocabulary we learned during class

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my laptop is dead. which means no pictures. which means no part two for vegas. it's been a minute but i think i'm getting a power cord today.

ciao bellas!
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Vegas: Pt. 1

Hello ladies and gentlemen! I've returned.. safely and soundly (since Monday night). Only thing is I still don't have an assistant *tear*; my life feels like it's going ninety miles an hour and I'm not at the wheel. So we'll take this recap in pieces, k? Tankies!

We trotted off early Friday morning toward the metro station. It was eight of us rolling through the city carrying our suitcases behind us... we looked like we were headed for an eighth grade field trip. Our voyage to Vegas was pretty uneventful - mostly because we were knocked out and drooling on our invisible plane pillows the whole way. As we started descending, there was a gorgeous view of the mountains. Finally they fell behind and there was a clear view of the city. We landed, picked up our bags, and made our way to the hotel.

The hotel we stayed in is known as the best city in Las Vegas - New York, New York. It was tres adorable! It is designed to replicate the look of New York city both inside (sidewalks, parking meters, shops, even Central Park) and out (statue of liberty, different buildings including the empire state building, and the Brooklyn bridge). That's the hotel in the picture, behind the MGM building. Oh, and there is a rollercoaster ride as well! Only 12 bucks a pop...

After settling down in the room we got ourselves something nice to eat, went back for a nap, then woke up in time to get ready for the event of the night: Cirque du Soleil's Zumanity show! Well, what can I say about this show? It was... uh... very.. interesting. First think nakey (or mostly). Think sex. include transvestites and a midget. and think of every sexual orientation possible. That is the show in a nutshell. Here is a commercial for the show. I suggest you check it out before you see the show. I certainly wasn't prepared for what I saw!!

That night we went to the Palms hotel to have dinner at the Little Buddha restaurant. The food is a bit over my price range as a student who has already splurged on a trip but it is absolutely delicious! If you are ever there, definitely check it out. That night I had accidentally left my license in my carry-on luggage so I couldn't get into the club. This wasn't the worst thing however because some of us were getting a bit frustrated so me and two others went to Sonic (yes, Sonic!) for some food and headed back to the hotel.

Next: Saturday and Sunday...

And FYI, Monday officially kicked off my annual celebration of my birthday week! October 14, 1986 was the day the world became a better place. So I invite you to celebrate these days with me. I'd prefer if you sent checks in the mail though. I'm just saying.
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Yea Baby!

Guess where I'm going... oh, I gave it away didn't I? Well I'm off for a fabulous weekend. This is a much needed vacation. I've been absent for over a week now because I still haven't gotten my life on track. I've been doing a great job posting my resume for jobs. I've had two interviews today and I have several more next week. Yet, I'm doing my schoolwork way too late for even my procrastination skills and I'm not getting decent sleep.

On top of that I feel so disheveled. So I've decided that I need an assistant. If you know anybody who is in need of a challenging experience for their resume - college freshmen, please line up here - tell them to give me a call. The details of the job are as follows:

Job title: Personal assistant
Description: Duties include, but are not limited to, organizing and reminding of all scheduled events relating to Mademoiselle M
Pay: competitive compensation; top of the line experience in comparison to other volunteer positions
Location: Within close proximity to Mademoiselle M (not required 24/7 obviously)

I'd appreciate if you could spread the word as quickly as possible. This is not a game...

Talk to you soon dearies,
Mlle. M
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