Saturday, April 25, 2009

Food for thought...

First my apologies for not checking in here regularly, it's been a stressful week, but I'm going to try to do better.

This morning as I was catching up on my reading and trying to get my thoughts focused to update Natural Sunshine I ran across something of interest to me.

Over on BHM today, one of my member friends (MizzBrit) started
a thread about these ignorant a$$ (IMO) Dr. Miracle's relaxer commercials. You know the ones, they bash hair in any state other than relaxed. Don't misunderstand me, I'm NOT anti-relaxer, but I AM anti-"anything that attempts to threaten my daughter's self-esteem!" Believe that!

These are the two commercials I referenced in the discussion above, but not the two that started the discussion at BHM.


I posted my response there (
feel free to click the link above and read the full discussion), but I wanted to share it here as well, in hopes that it would be food for thought for those that come across my blog.

I stopped watching BET when my daughter was born (over 10 years ago), even on Sunday, but she most recently learned of the Gospel shows (mainly Sunday Best) on there (and being the lover of Gospel music that she is) asked if she could watch. Dr. Miracle has a new set of commercials (with a husband and wife) that I do in fact find offensive. Well, I don't know if offensive is the word...but angry certainly is.

I clicked on the links you provided and watched the first few seconds and had to stop. They grate my LAST nerve. Angry I didn't know if I was just overly sensitive, but I can't stand these newest ones I see on Sundays, I hate what they are saying to young girls, more so than grown women.

I'd be fine with them if they were presented as a styling option,but to say how awful these women's hair is (and they don't even look bad!) and that they NEED a relaxer....Angry The husband is calling her hair a bird's nest, then (I think) he says , "no a squirrel's nest." It just goes on and on. I'm VERY much bothered that they have to degrade natural hair in order to promote the use of a relaxer.

When I think about the millions of young girls watching that channel and digesting that message, it makes me nauseous. I CRINGED when that first commercial came on as my daughter sat there watching. She turned to me and just waited for a response, for some confirmation that this was wrong...and you can best believe she got it! Her little eyes looked as if they were saying, "Them, too? That's how my family was talking about my hair last summer, Mommy." We had a long talk about marketing ploys and how they play on the insecurities and misinformation taught to black women about their hair and about the images society puts out there. It was a productive talk and I could tell that she felt better as a result of it. We had already had a version of this talk when her "incident" happened last year and I decided to transition, but that commercial seemed like a slap in the face to her and I could see it in her eyes.

But what about the little girls that digest that and don't have anyone to talk to them?

My baby girl loves her hair and all the ignorant Dr. Miracle's commercials that they play will not change that. She said, "I don't want a relaxer ever mommy." I smiled and told her honestly, "I want you to always love your hair and know that it's beautiful just the way it is, but if you get older and want different styling options I'll be ok with that. But I don't ever want you to think or believe that having a relaxer is the ONLY option you have to obtain "pretty" hair because you already have pretty hair and I think you understand that." She vehemently replied, "I'm NEVER getting one!" Well, we'll see, I thought to myself But I was honest in my response. I'd prefer that she not, but if she does I don't want it to be because she feels what God gave her is ugly and I think I'm building a solid foundation in her that will continue to combat that type of thinking. God knows I'm trying.

My challenge to everyone: Be mindful of what we are allowing "society" to tell our children about their beauty.


Saturday, April 18, 2009


Still humming along with my transition!! Friday marked 47 weeks post relaxer, which means.....5 more weeks and I will be celebrating my 1 year transition anniversary!!!

I'm so very excited!! I can hardly believe it's been almost a
WHOLE year. Time really does fly when you're having fun!


Monday, April 13, 2009

Transitioning into a vegetarian lifestyle

As I've mentioned before, my natural hair journey has caused me to desire a healthier way of living and nourishing my body. My body is a temple, which means I should treat it better than I do - inside and out. I previously shared with you my fitness goals, training for a 5k, as well as my desire to become a vegetarian. I've found some wonderful resources to help me in this I'm sharing them with you (You will find a few of them linked in my "Knowledge is key" area to the left.) As with any undertaking I am careful to do my research and not make any "fly by the seat of my pants" decisions. There is so much information and support on the internet, it's AWESOME!!! has been of tremendous help to me. Here you will find a list of transitioning tips for newbs (like myself!) If you read the information listed there (quoted below), you will find websites that will mail you a Vegetarian Starter Kit FOR FREE and there is one you can access directly from the internet.

Get free vegetarian and vegan starter guides at, and

During my research
I learned that there are several different "levels" or types of vegetarianism.
1. Semi-Vegetarians aka Flexitarians

Semi-vegetarians limit their intake of either certain types of meat or the amount of meat. For example, they might eat no red or white meat (beef, pork, venison, etc), but eat fowl and fish. Or they might only eat meat once or twice a week. Someone who only eats fish can also be called a pescatarian. (Purists would say that semi-vegetarians are not vegetarians at all, but I have included them in order to show the complete hierarchy.)
2. Ovo-Lacto Vegetarians

The most common type, ovo-lacto vegetarians do not eat any animals, but do eat eggs and dairy products.
* Ovo vegetarians (eat eggs but not dairy) * Lacto vegetarians (eat dairy but not eggs)
3. Vegans

Vegans eat no animal products - no eggs, no dairy, no honey, etc.
4. Raw/Living Foodists

Raw or Living Foodists eat only raw food, because enzymes are destroyed by normal cooking processes.
5. Fruitarians

Fruitarians eat only fruit, fruit-like vegetables (e.g., tomatoes, cucumbers), and sometimes seeds and nuts.
Here are a few of the cookbooks that I want. Don't they look GREAT?!

Let me re-iterate that while I love animals, my purpose for this is to improve my quality of life and overall health. Whatever YOUR choice, whatever YOUR reasons for your current lifestyle I encourage you to live your best only get one!


Sunday, April 12, 2009

Look what I tried...

Shout out to my girl, tru_blu09 from, for the information and encouragement to try putting a bun in my hair. This was my first attempt ever at using one of those bun "thingies" and it turned out ok ...even though it's off centered. LOL I'm pretty happy with my initial effort!

I decided to give in and experiment last night since today is wash day (By the way - I've yet to do anything to my hair as of yet...and it's almost 3:30pm!)

Oh, and just in case one of you would like to give this a try, I used one of these bun rings:

And I followed this YouTube tutorial prepared by Marand313. I didn't use the oils, etc that she used because I used the "mesh" versus the styrofoam-like ring. Because of this I didn't see the need to worry about my hair drying out. That and it was only in while I ran out for ice cream late last night. :<)

Just wanted to share my joy. :<)


Friday, April 3, 2009

'And a little child shall lead them.' ....and so she did.

My daughter is so proud that I am no longer relaxing my hair. And I am so blessed to have her in my life.

A little background
As I mentioned in my first post here, my daughter is my natural hair inspiration. She is the inspiration for every change I've made in my life since she was born...since the moment I knew I was pregnant with her. I never fully grasped how much I could love a person before she came into my life. And now that she's here, there TRULY isn't anything I wouldn't do for her. So when she (at the age of 9) started to feel like her hair wasn't beautiful, that she wanted straight her like me (insert shocked face) so her father's family wouldn't treat her like she had "the worse hair in the whole house," (insert angry face) it was a split second decision for me. I was done with relaxers, in that moment! It was as simple as that.

I had always told her how beautiful her natural hair was (and it IS!), but I was sending her mixed messages. And when I realized it, I was filled with guilt! *tears* I was so angry with those members of her family that made her feel that way (anger is not even a strong enough word!!) and disappointed in myself. I thought that I could instill a pride of her natural hair in her while having my own relaxed without any problem at all...never even gave it a second thought. But when the rubber hit the road and "society" started to weigh on her she needed a mother that was leading by example. A mother that was "walking the walk" AND "talking the talk."

*Drifts off into thought*
I didn't even have a "good reason" to relax my hair to begin with. I've been on "auto pilot" since I was in middle school. It was just what I did. *shrugs shoulders* My hair was very different from my mother's fine multi-ethnic hair and she didn't have a clue what to do with it. So when my friends started getting relaxers she jumped all over it!! ...and my aunt jumped all over HER for "ruining that baby's hair!" I thought I was cool and loved it....until that summer day in 2008. As I sat there and listened to MY baby's heart breaking I realized it wasn't least not for me.
*Snaps out of daydream and continues the story*

Happily ever after? ....
Now, she LOVES her hair once again and REFUSES to let anyone flat iron it. I thought she would have "length issues" after her decision, but she has told me that she likes the way it shrinks and doesn't care if other people don't realize how long it is. She usually wears it in twists, styled when wet, so her BSL (bra strap length) hair shrinks up to her shoulders. Her classmates who are accustomed to seeing her with "long hair" say they love how "boingy" her hair is and they are always touching it. LOL Gotta love kids!

Neither of us have had direct heat on our hair since last summer. So here we are, approaching one year "post trauma", and we're as happy as two pigs playing in the mud. :<)
I'm so proud of her I could just burst!!

My challenge to ALL mothers (and mothers-to-be):

Take some time to think about the messages you are sending your children, especially your daughter(s) about their hair and their beauty. PLEASE understand that I'm not judging anyone for their "styling" decisions, but for US, it was bigger than a "styling" choice. It was becoming an "esteem" issue and I wasn't having that!! Now, I have my daughter back and she believes me when I tell her that her hair is beautiful and that it's just the way God intended for it to be because He doesn't make mistakes. She knows that:

Good hair is healthy hair. Nothing more, nothing less!


Friday Update!

I'm LOVING my transition! Love, Love, Love It!!!