Recently, Aven has been pulling herself up on various household items (the couch and her toys) to stand. She has taken her hands off whatever she was holding onto and stood unassisted for a few seconds. I know these are the first steps toward her learning to walk. I posted the featured photo for this post on Instagram along with the following caption. “You’re learning to stand and find your balance, which is definitely a set of skills you will need as you evolve and enter into the fullness of your divine destiny. Learning to stand, and finding balance always seems to prepare you for your next steps.” Reading it back to myself, I thought about how true that is in life, not just in childhood.
My Breastfeeding Journey: I can’t begin to count the hours I’ve spent breastfeeding my little one. I set a loose goal of wanting to breastfeed for at least a year, and we are only 3 months away from that milestone! Breastfeeding, for us, is truly a bonding experience. Seeing my baby look up at me with her big brown eyes, and watching her fall asleep being nourished through my body, is the greatest feeling. I knew from the beginning that breastfeeding was something I wanted to do and I prayed that I would be able to.
Although we both have gotten the hang of breastfeeding, the road has by no means, been without its bumps and bruises. (I’ve literally been, kicked, scratched, pinched, pulled, slapped, and bitten.) Our breastfeeding journey has been challenging but well worth it.
My Breastfeeding Journey: The Beginning
I started breastfeeding Aven in the hospital, after she was born, with help and guidance from lactation specialists. They kindly and respectfully stepped in the role I wished my mother was alive to participate in. I had previously attended a breastfeeding class, but still didn’t understand completely how to breastfeed successfully. The lactation specialists taught me how to burp my baby, explained how often I needed to feed her, and taught me different feeding positions.
Getting support from the lactation specialists gave me much-needed confidence and assurance in establishing a successful breastfeeding relationship. I believe every mother should have access to this type of support, whether in the hospital, in their community, or even online through resources such as the Happy Family Infant Feeding Platform, which offers live chat support from a team of certified lactation specialists, or, “Happy Mama Milk Mentors”. Their platform also provides products and support for supplementing and formula feeding. I would have loved additional support through a program like Happy Family’s, especially at the beginning of my breastfeeding journey.
The feeling of nursing took a lot of getting used to. Aven’s strong suckling triggered contractions in my uterus, which, for me was the most painful. I felt strong waves of cramps each time I nursed her. This was my uterus’ process of shrinking back to its normal size. I endured the pain of nursing and held on to the hope that after the first few weeks the pain would subside. And it did, eventually.
Once we were home from the hospital, I fed her as much as possible to drain milk from my breast and keep my supply up. I eventually learned to allow her to drain one breast then switch to the other side. My body became synced with her need to feed, and my breasts would fill with more milk at the two-hour mark, just before each feeding. Talk about mother instinct….
My Breastfeeding Journey: The Struggle
Most nights I sat up in the bed to feed my daughter and didn’t get any real sleep. Round the clock feedings every two hours were so tiring, I was a legit zombie. I remember wanting to lie down to feed her but I worried that it could be dangerous for her if I fell asleep with her in the bed.
Eventually, I tried feeding her lying down and haven’t looked back since. It was the first step in restoring my sanity that was chipping away from sleep deprivation. I kept the sheets, pillows, and comforter away from her to keep her as safe as possible. Also, I didn’t beat myself up with guilt if I fell asleep. When I did fall asleep, once I woke up, I’d put her back in her bassinet. I was previously terrified to co-sleep (until I realized it was more dangerous for me to keep trying to function with no sleep) but it honestly helped to support my breastfeeding goals.
Also, I had trouble understanding pumping and wanted to avoid it because of all I heard about “nipple confusion”. I really didn’t want anything to negatively affect my being able to breastfeed. One night, I decided to pump out milk so that Aven’s father would be able to feed her. I pumped everything out. I was happy with myself until shortly after, it was time for Aven to eat. She refused to drink from a bottle. She cried at my breast as nothing was coming out and I felt so defeated.
This was definitely one of those moments where I would have loved to talk to a lactation specialist. Eventually, Aven fell asleep and when my partner came home I broke down. Fatigue, frustration, and the feeling of failure got the best of me. His reassurance that my milk supply would replenish, was a simple truth that I was in too much of a fog to realize on my own.
I was terrified that I’d have to give my baby formula and blur the ideal picture I had in my head of what I wanted feeding to look like for my family. Thankfully, I didn’t have to supplement with formula, and my milk supply was replenished. I think it is important to have some flexibility in your ideals. Things happen that are out of our control. A lot of the anxiety and frustration we experience may be due to holding too tightly to fixed ideals and wanting things to play out the way we see them in our heads versus how they may present in reality.
Each family has its own, unique dynamic, and faces its own unique set of challenges and victories. The same is true for each family’s approach to child rearing. Feeding looks different in many different family units and each family deserves as much support as they can get. Happy Family seems to understand that need for support and offers valuable resources to meet the needs of every family figuring out feeding, all while celebrating the uniqueness of each families’ approach.
My Breastfeeding Journey: The Victory
So far, we’ve been on our breastfeeding journey for 9 months. My daughter has been breastfed at home, while walking, at festivals, in church, in the car (countless times), in front of family, in fancy restaurants, covered, uncovered, really anywhere we have been and feeding time was upon us. I’ve been blessed to be able to stay home with my daughter since she was born. This has helped tremendously in making breastfeeding my little one this long, a possibility. I salute all moms who make it work differently. The struggle is real and I can only imagine having to do it and balance a traditional work schedule. I’m so proud of how far we’ve come and excited to see all that the future will bring.
My Breastfeeding Journey: Moving Forward
Aven is now using a spoutless sippy cup with assistance and is eating solids in addition to breastmilk. She’s tried homemade mashed or pureed avocado, banana, mango (pictured below), blueberries, carrots, green beans, sweet potatoes, and broccoli (pictured below). Feeding can definitely get a little messy, but it’s working just fine for us right now.
Despite its challenges, breastfeeding has been the most natural course for us. I have peace of mind knowing that I am doing what is best for my baby. She hasn’t been sick, she’s gaining weight appropriately and thriving overall.
Our breastfeeding journey has undoubtedly strengthened our bond and helped me connect with her. It has also has given her and I the reassurance that I can meet her needs at the most basic level and beyond.
TIPS and Truths from my Breastfeeding Journey
- Baby’s mouth should be wide over the areola versus just suckling at nipple.
- If baby falls asleep immediately at feedings, gently rub baby’s cheek with your knuckle to stimulate the sucking reflex and encourage baby to stay somewhat awake, long enough to continue eating.
- Once baby finishes drinking, try to pump remainder out into bottle to store.
- Breastfed babies often eat every 2-3 hours, it may help to use an app on your phone to keep track (baby’s doctor will ask about feedings and waste output at check ups).
- Check with your insurance, which should cover a breast pump (also check with your local WIC office about obtaining a breast pump if your qualify for their services)
- When pumping, many women get more milk in the morning, after baby’s first feeding.
- After frozen milk is thawed, it may have a soapy, sour, taste and smell …..(I hear you can avoid this by boiling milk prior to freezing, which reduces some nutritional value but may be more palatable for baby )
- Around 3 months my daughter became easily distracted while feeding, making it difficult to breastfeed successfully. It helped to keep the room dark and eliminate as much noise as possible.
- Aven wouldn’t take a bottle, so we tried spoon-feeding her. To my surprise, this worked! I’d pump then feed her the milk with a baby spoon.
- Drinking teas that support nursing helps my milk supply, as well as eating greens, like spinach. I keep the tea bags in my purse and get hot water, lemon, and sometimes honey, from local restaurants or drive throughs or keep hot water in my canteen from home.
- To combat nipple cracking and soreness, I used Shea butter and/or coconut oil, as well as my own breastmilk.
- Since I’ve continued breastfeeding, I haven’t had a menstrual cycle.
- Breastfeeding can help shrink mom’s uterus back to its normal size and help with weight loss.
- Having patience is very important in order to succeed at breastfeeding.
- Breastfeeding is a sacrifice, of your body, time, and energy.
- Every woman’s breastfeeding journey will be different.
The first cut is the deepest….. that song is playing over and over in my head and it actually applies to today’s message. Like the first cut may be the hardest to bear, the first step is usually the hardest to take. If you have a dream, which I know you do, why not go for it, and make it a reality? Sounds easier than it is, right?
While your dream may not come true in a day, week, month or even a few years, it is imperative that you remember this: Each small step in the direction of your dream counts. Think of it like building a pyramid. We are excited to get to the top but can easily become discouraged looking at how far the top is from the ground. If you start now, laying your foundation, brick by brick, you’ll be at least halfway done before you know it.
Think about the fact that tomorrow is not promised.
If you acknowledged the possibility that you could be on the other side tomorrow, what would you do with your time? What is important to you? Is there a legacy you would like to leave?
Acknowledge the urge to be overwhelmed by the big picture, then move past it, by focusing on a small action or step.
Choosing one thing to do today will get things into motion. Choosing at least one thing every day and Starting Now, will help you build momentum and habits that will support your end goal. Get focused (at least on one task even if it’s small) today.
There is beauty in knowing that each day you wake up, you have a new opportunity to do things differently.
If you got distracted or failed to accomplish a task the day before, don’t beat yourself up or use that as an excuse to not push forward. If you struggle with procrastination, check out these quick tips to get you on the right track. Make each day and each step count. You can achieve the goals you have in your heart, focus on completing them one step at a time and START NOW.
Let go of the thought that you have to have a hard plan figured out to the ‘T’.
You don’t have to have a hard plan. The world around us is changing every day. Allow your plan to be flexible and leave room for modifications. Make a loose plan for the big picture, save the specifics for smaller goals and tasks you can complete in the days, weeks, or months ahead.
Much love and many blessings to you! May your dreams manifest into your reality😘
Ever wonder about your friends? Are they really, for real-for real, your friends? I have a small circle of true friends. I am selective about who I allow in that circle. The awesome guys and chicas I call my true friends have some really important qualities in common. How do yours stack up? See below.
They are genuinely happy for you
Some people can’t be. Call it jealousy, envy, insecurity, hate, or mental illness….there are some people who see your successes/growth/failures only as it relates to them and only from their perspective. If you told them about a bowling match you won, they’d think you only won because they weren’t there to compete. If you told them about a new restaurant you love they’d tell you that they’ve never been but the one they like is better. True friends can really be happy for you and are genuinely excited to see you progress and grow. I feel comfortable sharing my ideas, hopes, dreams, and successes with them.
They help you focus on the positive
I don’t thrive off gossip. Nor do I wallow in negativity. When I find myself sinking, I do all I can to fight my way out. I yearn for positivity, light, and joy. My true friends help bring positivity to my life and I can usually count on them for good, deep down, gut jiggling laughs and good times.
They help bring out your best
Iron sharpens iron I enjoy being around people who challenge me to better and who I can learn from. I appreciate friendships that help to bring the best out of me. Stretching me the be able to obtain my goals and see for myself the reality of my wildest dreams. Blessing me with knowledge and experience that I didn’t have to go out and learn myself.
They aren’t afraid to confront you
It is important to have a friend who you trust to confront you when you are wrong, need to hear the truth, or need guidance. They have to have courage and care enough to do it and not sit back and watch your demise. A true friend will let you know when you’re slacking on you “goal pimpin’ ” and refer you to this post.
They will make sacrifices
A true friend will allow you to be celebrated, take a back seat sometimes, and make sacrifices in your favor. They will sacrifice their time, to listen, their money, if you needed it, their emotions, and experiences in order to help you grow.
They are Consistent
A true friend doesn’t have to call you every day to be there for you. Some friends I don’t even talk to once a month, but I know they would be there if I needed them. More than being constant, which refers more to frequency, I appreciate consistency, which I relate more to quality.
They are Trustworthy
Worthy of trust. You can count on your true friends to be honest and truthful. They prove time and time again that they have strong character. You can trust their opinion and their intent. A true friend can keep your deepest secrets and will not throw your failures back in your face with the intent to hurt you. They will lift you when you are low. You can rest assured that your personal business won’t be spread around like peanut butter on someone else’s toast….
They are Transparent
No bone collectors over here! As an extension of dealing in honesty and truth, true friends are transparent. They are not hiding in plain sight. One of my friends defines it as “being willing to not just receive information but also share information with the same zeal”. As you divulge your truth, they offer up theirs as well, for connectivity, healing, and greater understanding of each other’s paths and purpose.
They give an Unconditional Love
A true friend will be understanding, forgiving, and love you unconditionally. Their love has no strings and isn’t contingent upon your performance from week A to week B. Not one of us is perfect, a true friend knows this and has compassion. Loving you at your best and worst.
From chasing my desired career, attending school, and being a working adult to being a caregiver, now a new mom, and daughter who lost hers, I haven’t always been accessible physically or emotionally. I have given what I could where I could and I’m blessed to have friends who still rock with me….They have helped keep me sane and not lose my mane. (Shout out to every kernel of corn in this post..I was on it today lol )
Remember to do your best to be the friend you want to have ❤️
What qualities do you look for or appreciate most in your friends?
This was the first year I realized there was a different Mother’s Day recognized in the UK. I was super confused when I saw it. But I celebrated anyway and went out to eat. I’ll be celebrating twice from here on out!
This year, on May 14, I’m celebrating my first official Mothers Day, and remembering my own mother. My mom always enjoyed a quality gift. Not just some mess somebody found lying around the house and slapped a bow on it. And any money you spent on a card, she would’ve rather had in her hand.
After doing a bit of research, I’ve come up with 10 Mother’s Day gifts for a mom who values quality and thoughtfulness. Most are under $100 and great for other occasions as well.
Each image is “clickable” and will direct you to the product listing on Amazon. If you do choose to make a purchase using one of the links below, I will earn a small commission (see Legal)
For the coffee drinking mom, this one is a great idea and sure to get a lot of use. It offers the option to enjoy a variety of coffee and flavors with the use of K-Cups.
For the health conscious mom, or even the mom who enjoys a sweet blended treat, the Nutribullet is an awesome choice. She can fill with her favorites, twist the lid, flip upside down into the base and push down to enjoy a fresh daily green smoothie or even a fresh fruit pina colada.
3. Flowers $35
Flowers are classic. Send her favorites or a beautiful assorted bouquet like the one above. Don’t forget a personalized note! You can just send flowers, but if I sent them to my mom solo, she’d be like, “Is that it?! Where’s the rest of it?!”, so… I’d give her something else in addition (candy, chocolate covered strawberries, a gift card, cash, dinner at a restaurant, etc.)
For the mom who loves art, appreciates all things Zen, or even one who just loves a great statement/ conversation piece. This sand art piece is stunning and unique. You may see similar looking ones, but this one is the sharpest, best built, and classiest one out the bunch.
For moms who love their books, a scarf like this one is a hit. If there is a particular classic she is fond of, having a scarf with its beloved words may make her heart melt. Also this neutral color goes well with anything.
Who doesn’t need a massage?! Show your appreciation for all of the hard work and resulting stress she endures/endured being such a great mom. Help her relax, release, and renew with a trip to the spa or masseuse.
This is a pricey one, but the investment could afford mom more time for herself and the family. It is also a great Mother’s Day gift for mom’s who have limited or strained mobility due to age or other factors.
Jo Malone Fragrances are rich and delectable. My personal favorites are “Wild Bluebell” and “Nectarine Blossom and Honey”.
The Pandora Charm Bracelet is an excellent gift idea! You can purchase individual charms to add to the bracelet on different occasions in the future. It will become a true keepsake.
Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue is a timeless scent that is also one of my “go to’s”. It’s clean, fresh, and reminds me of Miami, Fl. This scent is perfect for Spring or Summer and good for any occasion.
As much as buying a thoughtful gift says, “I love you”, nothing says it quite like spending quality time. If you live far away or are just really “busy”, taking the time to call or visit means so much. There is no guarantee on the time our physical bodies will be here. Don’t take this time for granted. If your relationship is strained, work to fix it. Talk, take a walk in the park, give a massage, create an experience, go to dinner, cook….Even if money is funny, spend your time.
*In addition to the items listed, consider a piece of jewelry with her birthstone. Also, find out if there is anything old or broken that she cherishes that you can have updated. (Cleaning an old ring, getting a new battery for an older watch, or even restoring an old photo)
Hopefully this guide will inspire your own ideas for the perfect Mother’s Day gift!
Nike says it best: Just Do It! For many of us though, it is not that easy. It takes a lot more than an upbeat slogan to tackle our list of “to dos” and to take those first few steps toward our goals, or take the last steps toward completing unfinished projects. Sometimes it seems so much easier to put off these projects and tasks to be completed another time. Tomorrow becomes next week, next week becomes next month, and next month becomes next year, or worse, the day never comes … Have you ever wondered how to stop procrastinating? I believe we all have. If you struggle with overcoming procrastination, I hope this will help. I’ve put together this list of steps that are helping me and will hopefully help you move from procrastination to productivity.
Focus requires discipline and discipline requires practice. Develop a routine where you zone in on a specific task and get it done. Start practicing with little things for a small amount of time.
Set your phone to silent and move it away from you. If you must use your phone, there are apps that can limit your ability to open other apps on your phone for a certain period of time. Go into a quiet room. Don’t sit in front of a television if you know it will distract you. Try your best to separate yourself from anything that could take your mind away from the task at hand.
Set a Time Frame
Try setting a particular block of time to dedicate to completing tasks that require your attention.
Write Down your Goals
Make a note or set an alarm in your phone. Getting my goals out of my head and on to paper in the form of a task or “to do” list is usually my first step toward accomplishment. Writing goals and tasks down is honestly one of the key pieces of advice I would give anyone on how to stop procrastinating.
Post your goal to your social media channels. Sometimes it helps when other people are expecting you to complete a goal and may give you an extra push.
Get an Accountability Partner
Like social media, other people have a way of inspiring us. Their presence and/or gentle nudging, can be just the push toward our goals that we need. Share your goal with a trusted friend whom you know will check in on you and stand with you in completing your goal. Make sure they will help to hold you accountable.
Weigh the Importance
Consider how important your goal is to you or people who depend on you. Consider also, what happens if it doesn’t get done.
Initiate an Action
Start somewhere. This really should be one of the first steps to overcoming procrastination. Sit down, pick up a pencil, or conversely, get up, go outside… Close the door, procrastination is literally putting off a task until later. Force yourself with all your might, to do it now. Right now. I’ll wait……. Promise I’ll be here when you get back.
Prioritize Tasks from Greatest to Least
Get the major tasks completed first. If you have a list of to dos, get the most complex, time consuming, or highest consequence bearing tasks completed first. The easier tasks will seem like a piece of cake after that.
Resist the Urge to Compulsively Check Other Things
If you have to check every notification on your phone, including email, social media, texts, calls, etc. You are likely to experience a great amount of distraction while trying to complete your tasks.
Now that you’ve read some of my tips on how to stop procrastinating, let today be the day that you take your first steps toward overcoming procrastination and achieving your goals. Feel free to share any tips that work for you! Also, check out my post on God’s Timing, here.
My sister, daughter Aven, and I attended the Festival on Ponce at Olmstead Linear Park in Atlanta last Saturday. The art festival was arranged down a pathway lined with vendors’ booths showcasing their art, crafts, and products. I love festivals and checking out local art, and trying out the food. This was my first time visiting Olmstead Linear park. The same event, Festival on Ponce, is slated to take place this fall. Below are 6 reasons you should absolutely take your kids to an art festival this season.
There are many free art festivals and music festivals, especially Spring through Fall. Just look them up in your city!
Obviously, there is a lot to learn from every artist you see at a festival: details about how they craft their products, what mediums are used, facts about their personal inspiration, etc. However, a festival is also an opportunity to teach children about sales, money, and even bargaining. Additionally, some art festivals are strategically organized to take place in historic areas and/or support a worthy cause. Find out what you can about the area/cause and make it a learning experience.
You can even print off a scavenger hunt or make your own to increase your child’s engagement in the day’s events.
Lots of festivals will take place in a community where there will be free or cheap parking in neighborhoods or surrounding businesses. Consider using public transportation as well. At the Spring Festival on Ponce, we found free parking at a church across the street. The church was accepting donations though, for a Boy Scout troop, I believe.
Kid Friendly Activities
More often than not, there will be a designated area for children’s shows and activities. At the art festival we attended, there were plenty of activities for kids including face painting, bounce houses, and bungee jumping. Aven was seemingly intrigued by the bungee jumping set up.
Awesome Art and Artists
I enjoyed viewing the art on display and chatting with a few of the artists. People are unbelievably talented. I couldn’t help but to appreciate the complexity, beauty, and creativity of the human mind. Seeing the manifestation of each artist’s vision was a testament to the fact that we can do anything we put our minds to.
The artist featured above is Janine Monroe. She had some of the most intriguing and awe inspiring pieces on display at the festival. Janine’s use of recycled wood along with pigments and acrylic polymers to create sculptures on canvas is brilliant! You can visit her gallery here.
A festival is a one stop shop. You don’t have to go out to eat afterward. Usually there is plenty of food and snacks available for sale. On our outing we saw a line of food trucks in the park. The truck we decided upon had already sold out of a few items, so it’s always a good idea to come early. Aven also enjoyed her first King of Pops Grapefruit Mint popsicle.
You may want to bring:
- A bottle or two of water
- A few of your own snacks
- Cash (although there is usually an atm and many vendors are equipped to take card payments)
- Tennis shoes
- Visor or Hat
- Hand Sanitizer
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- My 6 month old doesn’t like being in her car seat carrier for too long so I brought along my Baby K’Tan baby carrier, I also have a more structured carrier from Ergobaby.
- Because I’m still breastfeeding and often feed my daughter in public, I use this multi-use muslin swaddle from Aden + Anais as a breathable coverup.
- I also brought along my Canon T6i, which I’m still figuring out, to capture a few photos.
*If you have kids that are walking age, it may be helpful to locate designated “lost child areas” and come up with a plan before hand.
I’m looking forward to catching a few more festivals this season in Atlanta, such as the Sweet Auburn Fest, Georgia Renaissance Festival, Dogwood Festival, the Atlanta Jazz Festival, and the Atlanta Black Arts Festival. Which festivals in your city are you looking forward to?
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Over the years I have struggled with my skin. Since my first pimple in elementary school, I have been seeking a cure or the best treatment for my combination to oily skin. Treatments I have tried include: prescription gels and creams like differin, retin A, face washes like clean and clear acne wash, African black soap, and neutrogena acne bar. I’ve also tried steams, ingestible treatments like accutane and birth control, masks, and lots of prayer lol. I still use some of these products to maintain the health of my skin, and others I have ditched. I stumbled upon an awesome addition to my healthy skin regimen a few years ago, in my local health food store. This awesome find was honey. Not just your regular shmegular “honey” in the bear shaped container. I’m talking about raw honey, he best honey for skin. There is a major difference.
After googling “honey face mask” and reading about all of the possible benefits, I decided to give it a try. The honey I purchased was Ulmo honey. It comes from the Ulmo tree in Chile. It is labeled as an “active” honey. According to some studies and research, it is possible that this honey can cure some diseases and infections due to its high activity level.
To make my honey face mask, I apply the ulmo honey on my skin in a fairly thin layer. I use an upward motion (from middle of face towards ears, middle of neck toward the sides, each application outward like an imaginary facelift lol) and allow it to stay on my skin for about 15 minutes. Afterwards, I rinse with warm water. The honey is very sticky and its best to use on a damp face (not wet).
My skin is softer, tighter in a good way, and looks noticeably refreshed with refined pores immediately after using the honey treatment. Over a longer period of use, I have noticed a natural brightening or “glow” on my skin.
I’ve not been able to find the first brand I tried. You can buy it in a gift shop in Chile, so, if anyone goes, grab a jar for me! The closest substitute I have found is Just Beez Chilean Rainforest honey. The second best I have tried is Wedderspoon’s Ulmo honey. Another honey I tried isn’t Chilean honey at all, but it was still actually good, was Y.S. Organic Bee Farms. Recently, I purchased a new Ulmo honey called Soco Honey, and I am excited to try it out. Others that I have not tried but may offer similar benefits include:
Try a honey face mask made from Ulmo honey and your skin will thank you for it.
I routinely wear a sew-in as a protective hairstyle. I usually leave my sew-in in for 2-3 months. What I usually find when I take my hair down is a matted mess of old braids and bountiful new growth. Happy Detangling! After clearing my schedule, saying a prayer, and taking a deep breath, I walk out on to the battlefield (bathroom) and attack. Don’t think I come alone though, I have a small army with some heavy hitters.
See what’s in my arsenal below:
- rattail comb (the long, sharp, pointed end)
- wide tooth comb
- shea butter mixture (mixture of mostly Shea butter, olive oil, jojoba oil, and vitamin e)
- olive oil
- Aloe Vera juice (maintains PH balance of hair)
- spray bottle
- conditioner of your choice
- duck bill clips (you can use any clips you have; bobbi pins work ok as well)
I apply Shea butter and olive oil to my braids and spray aloe in to moisturize hair and loosen baked- in caked-in dirt. Then, I massage it into the mess lol, along with a small amount of conditioner. I take each braid and carefully undo with my fingers. Once I get down to the matting, I use the rattail comb end to pick out what’s matted. This takes time and patience. Throughout this process I re spray as needed and alternate between the wide tooth comb and rattail comb braid by braid. After each braid is completely detangled I twist the section and clip it out of the way.
It is normal for hair to shed. When leaving a protective style in for such a long time, you are bound to see some shedding. Detangling matted hair prior to washing is very important. Taking your time through this process will save your hair from extreme breakage and allow you to retain the length you gained.
After detangling, follow up with a good wash and conditioning routine to properly clean and restore strength and moisture.
He may not come when you want him but he’s always right on time. Hallelu hallelu hallelu .. This song always plays in my head when I’ve been waiting and waiting on God, and he finally comes through. Waiting out the delays in response time can be hard. Anxiety, fear, and worry can easily start to creep in, but I am learning to maintain my faith, even in the delays. Have you ever been running late somewhere and on the way you pass a bad wreck and think, “Wow, that could’ve been me” ?
I do believe most things happen for a reason. From time to time, I have examined my life and wondered why something happened or didn’t happen. I’ve thought about why I was not at some specific place in life that I thought I’d be at by a specific time. I’ve wondered why I’ve had to go through some of the things I’ve had to go through.
It has become clear to me over time, that some of the delays I’ve experienced in life have been for my own good. I have found that when something was delayed, I was not ready anyway. Often times, I thought I had a grip on a situation but did not in actuality and the delays made it possible for me to gain clarity. Other times, I’ve experienced delays that allowed the true colors of other people to shine through.
3 Reasons for Delays
- You are not ready yet. Many times we want things that we are not prepared for. There may be things you still need to learn. You may be lacking important qualities in your character. You may need to master where you are before moving to the next level.
- The blessing isn’t ready yet. God is a master coordinator. He knows each factor that will affect every particular outcome. The set for the bless up is real. There are circumstances that you could not anticipate,that he already knows about. He may be putting the right people in the right places years before you encounter them at the right time. The societal atmosphere, advancements in technology, the structure of your family, are among numerous variables that can play a role in when your blessing is due.
- What you are asking for is not for you. Sometimes the things we want are not meant for us. Trust that God knows best and has something better in store for you. Stay open to new ideas, new ways of thinking and new possibilities.
I always have to remind myself that God knows best. The Bible urges us to not become weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Keep faith and work towards your dreams and goals, and at the right time your blessings will be more than you ever thought of receiving. Remember also, that a delay is not necessarily a denial. Trust God’s timing.