Saturday, July 08, 2017

A year in my current role now what?

5 things I’ve learned this past year.

1. The God factor. In everything you do, see the God in it. Some might view this as a call to be optimistic, but it’s more than that. It’s a call to purpose. A call to be goal driven. There is something to be accomplished, despite our mood or disposition.

2. Be patient. Allow yourself time to learn, to fail, to grow, to not know and to discover. Allow others time to learn, to fail, to grow, to not know, to discover and to teach you.

3. Be intentional, not selective. Be kind, greet, acknowledge and help everyone. Be mindful of how you are doing these things. Be consistent in how you treat everyone.

4. Have a spirit of service. Stretch beyond your vision, and into the vision of someone else.

5. Be a good ambassador. If the platform supporting you lacked in some arena, or you had a bad experience or interaction. Proactively fill that gap by giving what you lacked to someone new. Create a great experience and interaction with someone new. Pioneer a new experience and elevate the standard.

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

A Cool Breeze

Cleaning my room; the upward climb. Man, so I’m pretty uptight when it comes to my living space. I love a carefree, neat space. It allows me to think, feel comfortable, unload, relax, be creative etc. But when it’s a mess, I can’t function. I’m not at ease. Thus my place has been cluttered, dusty, and just funky.

I’ve been on a 2 month journey to de-clutter. I have a lot of things. But this has taken way too long. So this week July 4th. It’s a wrap. I need to feel like I’m luxuriating wherever I’m staying. Being a homebody, my home is top on my list. So question to my workers, Moms, travelers, how do you keep up with home base. I can do the cleaning daily (when I’m actually there), the little stuff, but truth be told the house needs a deep clean at least once a month. You know the wash the windows, and walls, type of clean. How does everyone keep up?

To paint the picture, my siblings and I live in my Mom's house. She lives out of state. So we manage the house. Growing up, we always lived in apartments. But as adults, we live in a house. Maintaining a house is very different from an apartment. My approach has been to take it one room at a time. My studio space is my focal point, since that's my primary living space. Anyone else struggling?

The Benefits of a Clean and Tidy space (In my opinion – HA)

     1. Order

     2. Organization

     3. A sense of accomplishment

     4. A feeling of peace

     5. Clarity

     6. Confidence

     7. Value

     8. Openness (Your more willing to entertain)

Alright let me stop typing and get to it. Hold me accountable!

Thank God for his blessing, and the grace to manage the burdens that come along with them.


A Day in Turkey

Short spent, but we made the most of it. My Grandmother and I took Turkey Airlines to Cape Town, and had a day layover in Istanbul. We took a city tour while there. One of the best parts of the tour, was our walk through the market square. There were a TON of merchants. I liken the square to a Bazaar. Things were so fast paced, I didn't get a chance to stop, and take proper pictures.

We did get a chance to visit Sultan Ahmed Mosque. I believe it's the largest mosque in Istanbul. Truly breathtaking. You know, the history of Turkey is very interesting. Turkey was the epicenter of Christianity and has dwindled down so much in its Christian population. That speaks volumes.

On a more superficial level, I was on a hunt for scarves. However, I couldn’t find any silk scarves at a reasonable price. I actually really wanted very detailed, ornate pieces. But the area we were in catered to tourists. Thus prices were inflated. Turkey, I shall return! Someone please point me towards the silks and scarves. The diva in me will not rest. :-) Plus I need to give you guys a proper blog.

Cheers! God Bless You!

But I’m Woke, Now!

So, I joined a cult. Almost, or did, I. Hmm

A couple of months ago, I reconnected with a friend. She invited me to a volunteer event, feeding the poor. There I met other volunteers, who were down for the cause, excited about life, and had a sense of camaraderie I rarely see. My friend, and the other volunteers were affiliated to a program that offered empowerment seminars/ workshops. Apprehensive, I agreed to attend the programs welcome/introductory session. I eventually signed up for a weekend workshop. Which then evolved, into me signing up for a series of workshops. After attending the first two series, and in the midst of gearing up for a 3 month commitment in the next round of workshops, I had a God dream. It put a halt on everything (workshop related). This dream was demonic in nature. When I woke up, the workshop popped into my mind.

If you’re wondering, how can one have a God dream that is demonic? Let me explain. The nature of what was happening in the dream was demonic. I received that dream as a revelation from God, revealing to me what was happening spiritually within my life. Thus I took a step back. I fasted and prayed for the duration of the week, to get in alignment with God and to also break any covenants I may have entered into. Besides the dream, there were things throughout the seminar that were red flags, however I rationalized them. Alright I’m done with that.

One thing I want you guys to note, is that the workshop was a modern day, group therapy session. That's how I would describe it. One would think that there's no spiritual impact or ties to it. However, I caution you to pray over it. Ask God, to have you take from it the God things, and to reject and leave everything else which is not of him there. In Jesus Mighty Name.

The things I learned from the workshop.

1. I’ve been playing around with God. But I’m Woke now.

I realized that I’ve been living life complacently. I haven’t been living as though God is on my side and has my back. Think about it. You have the ultimate power backing you, the creator, and with all that, my life is the best I can come up with right now. Why am I not running for President, living in Dubai, impacting a country full of women? There’s a level of Boldness, I’d even say cockiness I should have, knowing whose I am. I should recognize my source of strength, which lives within me.
Jesus Christ.

2. I’ve been ignoring God’s work. I got so focused on me, and trying to serve myself. I let Gods plan fall by the wayside. There are distinct things God has asked me to do. Let’s do it Chanda!

3. Every step counts. The workshops were held on weekends, which meant I missed church. I noticed as time progressed, my desire to go to church decreased. Eventually my desire to watch the missed sermons online also decreased. In a matter of two months, I was quickly moving away from the presence of God.

So that’s the gist of it. Another interesting experience that my family, you, and I can laugh about it.

Later - God Bless

Monday, July 03, 2017

South Africa - Foodie

It’s approaching a year since I visited South Africa. Cape Town to be specific. It was a phenomenal experience. I traveled with my Grandmother, and met with her cousins (who also live in the states). We rented an Airbnb located walking distance from Parliament, with a view of Table Mountain right outside of our window. We were in Cape Town for nearly two weeks. Where do I start? The Food. Wow!

The food was Bomb. The freshest food I’ve had in life. But, you know what? Let me start this off right. Thank you God for this opportunity. This trip came out of nowhere. Last year, if you check out the blog history, I took two trips. The first to Martinique, the second to Aruba. I surely wasn’t done travelling for the year, however I made no provisions for a third trip. 

So here I am, just chilling minding my own business, two weeks after returning from Aruba, when my Uncle calls. 

Hey Chanda, how do you feel about going to South Africa? Well, umm I feel great about it Bruh! When do I go? Seriously, the discussion went just that way. Ok, Chanda I’ll book a flight for you and your Grandmother, you’ll pay for your boarding. That works! Now back to the food, ain’t God Great! My future husband, please take notes. This is how my Father spoils me.

My cousin Ashley and Grandma Dawn researched tours and wineries for us to visit. We also went on a weekend safari. Yes, the Golden Girls and I. During our Safari, we met a native South African, who invited us to his home for dinner. Not encouraging anyone to head to a strangers house. But we went. It was Bomb. He cooked a four course meal for us, with wine pairings. The foodie in me had an orgasm, like twice. It was the highlight of our trip.

Cheers! May God bless you as you read this! Thanks for visiting.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Lies you do tell

Hey Guys - Happy Friday!

Let me get right into it. I belong to a few private whatsapp groups. One being a women's support group. In that group we share experiences, put out petitions for prayers, vent out frustrations, and overall celebrate and enjoy each other. Well recently, my Uncle sent a video of a young girls response to Trump being president, to our family whatsapp chat. The video had me cracking up, so I decided to share it with the women's group. When I initially saw the video, I assumed it was a video of his inlaws. Knowing fully damn well I shouldn't be sharing family related items, I meant to tell the women's group  hey this is a video of my family please don't distribute. I didn't though. So when a member of the group commented on the video, I used it as an opportunity to say hey that's my niece. In my head implying please don't distribute. A few minutes later another member asks hey is that your niece, because I also have seen this video. I respond immediately on the defensive, yes. So now I'm like ok, it's my Uncles inlaws, but I don't want to have to explain who the family is and how they are related to my Uncles wife. I say instead it's close family friends. In my head I'm annoyed, that I have to go back to my Uncle to confirm. I go back to him and ask, hey is that Aunty so and so... He says no. Chai. Now I'm a straight up liar. I think to go back to the group and recant my statement. But to be honest I was completely embarrassed. Although some time has passed by, it's still bothering me. Essentially, my integrity has been diminished. What also irks me is the feeling that I can't just be transparent within the group and express exactly what I have expressed here on the blog. So in doing some soul searching, I have to redefine what I consider to be a safe space. Because when questioned, I automatically defaulted to a defensive posture, why? When I found out the truth I was reluctant to go back to the group and acknowdlege it.  I just didn't address it.

So I have to ask myself a few questions.
1. On a broader scale, can I be honest with those in my circle?
2. Can I make mistakes, be wrong and own up to them in front of those in my circle?
3. Can I be transparent with those in my circle ( the good, the bad, the ugly)?

Anyway, lesson learned. I'm still growing...


Saturday, October 01, 2016

Be who you Desire. Be what you want to Receive!

I remember as a little girl, how I idolized beautiful dark skin Black Women. It's not that women of a different race, or of a lighter complexion lacked in beauty. It was simply, that I could easily identify with the features of dark skin Black Women. As a little girl, their shinning was my shinning. So, when I would encounter a beautiful dark skin Black Woman, be it within my family or other arenas, I'd have in my mind a vision of what type of relationship I wanted with them. I envisioned myself as their little sister, they supporting me, showing me the ropes etc. You get the point. A secondary Mommy, but more like the cool big sister.

As life would have it, for one reason or another, besides my Mom and my Sister, I never truly developed that type of relationship with the women I encountered. Rather, as I've gotten older, and broadened my perspective, I've developed that type of relationship in the most unexpected places, from a diverse group of women.

This taught me a few lessons:
1. Don't limit yourself to what you see, or what you know
2. Don't place expectations on others
3. Be open to people. Not just a particular set of people.

Back to the point at hand. Now in my 30's. I can accept the responsibility of having young girls look up to me. I say that because I've developed a stronger relationship with God, I've settled into a Church community, and I have a strong sense of self. Meaning, I'm good with being me, authentic me. Thus whomever I'm interacting with gets a fresh dose of Chanda, lol.

When I joined my church, I initially struggled to find my place or fit within that community. Namely because my church is predominately Yoruba. In fact, I still struggle. I'm Ibibio and have been raised in America. So, the interaction culturally is off. I try, but it's a relationship that will continue to develop with time and humility on my part.

With my struggles to fit in, I often perceived the church members to be judgmental towards me. I even thought that their kids were judging me. Now let's be honest, some of them probably were and still are, lol. But as I've spent more time within this community, I began to realize that some of the kids were watching me beyond judgment. Some of them we're just curious. Thus I had to change my reaction towards them, from a defensive standpoint, to one in which I would have wanted as a child. So long story short, if there's something that is deficient in your life, or someone missing from your life, be that something or someone for another person. You know best, how and what you wanted. So serve the people. Maybe God was intentional, so that you would know exactly what to give someone else, and would have the understanding of how it would feel to receive that gesture.