Creative Confetti! Arts and Crafts Anyone?

IMG_20170522_100326_879

This weekend I had no plans and I was happy about it! I got a call from my friend Alicia and she wanted to know if I wanted to craft a summer wreath. I was happy to do this because this is not work. Plus, I like spending time with Alicia. She’s crafty and artsy so we vibe well. I had no idea what kind of wreath I was going to make and I am on a very very tight budget.

I had a foam wreath I bought last year on sale at Michael’s. It took forever, ever, for me to do this wreath and this is why many of them cost so much depending on the material and the time. It also depends on the size and type of wreath.

I left the material torn and weathered because this is beachy theme wreath. It’s a vibrant, driftwood, sandy, oceanic, type wreath with a bit of fun and a hint bling. I am so glad my hands did not swell doing this project (I have rheumatoid arthritis dis-ease). I had no idea what I was doing because I have never done one like this. I just went my own imagination and creative flow. I really love it.

IMG_20170520_203905_546

I had piece of burlap ribbon left and I wrapped it around a relish jar to use for my bobby pins. It matches the decor in my bathroom.  (No scraps left behind!)

~Nikki

Fashion Confetti: Consignment Shops

IMG_20170512_132022

Let the record show, I am really good at this! (LOL) or just very fortunate to find such great deals to enhance my wardrobe. This Le Suit jacket is a separate and retails from 59.99-79.99 and to get it, and it fits perfectly, for 24.99 was awesome. It will add a big pop of color to outfits. The pants below are by Kasper and I saw them for about 69.99-79.99 printed patterns. 9.99 is what I paid. I wore them for mother’s day as I opted for the cool and casual mom look. I added my 6.98 top from Target, a purse that was a gift from someone years ago, and Nine West shoes from TJ Maxx that I already had in the closet. I really like those shoes. IMG_20170512_132132.jpg

~Nikki

RA Blog: All Eyes on Me (Thee)

f1d71a2e7af99d1fae646b924d78a3dd

It seems as if everyone else is whizzing right past you as you “mosey” along or perhaps you are not moving at all. Maybe, you are stuck. Well, I have goals because I set goals. I have dreams and new dreams, new visions, things I want to see happen in the face of Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia and all of that other noise that seems to slow me down and sometimes get the best of me.

In the effort to lose weight, to achieve my other goals as well, it seems as if the well abled bodied people are just flying right past me. Soaring to their goals, and I, I am left behind in their dust. Me? I’m struggling to stay motivated. I can’t walk that fast, like I use to. I can’t use my hands very well today, I can’t stand as long as I use to, the fatigue…it’s what some call excuses, but it’s a reality for many of us. We are not who we use to be and oh if we would have known this was coming, we may have did the 5K or went back to school sooner.

Q: Dear God, Universe, Creator, Self, Spirit, how do I deal with all the feels of being left behind?

A: Take your eyes off others and put your eyes on me. Keep your eyes on “your” prize. Stop the comparison. It’s unfair and foolish to compare yourself with well abled bodied people and it’s unfair to compare yourself to the old self. You can’t be in the past and present at the same time. This is why you are not progressing as fast or at all.

So, with that revelation, I invite you to meditation and prayer. Center yourself during the times when you are “feeling” so much despair and disappointment. If I keep watching others I will fall. If I keep comparing myself to others, I will fail. If I keep living in the past, I can’t work in the present to prepare for my future. All eyes on the Creator. All eyes on the scriptures, affirmations, practices, that center your heart and mind.

~Nikki

Fashion Confetti: Shopping Off Seasons

 

We took a trip to Iowa and I went to a Goodwill store there. They had coats and Jackets on sale. I paid 13.99 for the St. John’s Bay, lined, double breasted coat on the left and the 5.99 for the corduroy jacket on the right. I will have them dry cleaned and put them away until the Fall/Winter. It pays if you are on a budget to check out some of these shops. I donate clothes to the Goodwill, Salvation Army, and thrift stores. I also consign. My mom always gave and she told us to never give something you wouldn’t want to wear. So, I make sure it’s in good condition and sometimes it’s brand new. There are people out there who do this and that’s how you find some great items. Both of these are excellent quality and excellent condition.

~Nikki

Fashion Confetti: Target Clearance

IMG_20170512_130838_013

Just a few items from Target clearance. I wanted a few black and white tops for church and other dressy to casual outfits. I think you can do miracles with black and white pieces. It was a challenge to get a great shot of the black sheer blouse! (but it’s so so cute) And I really like the cropped sheer black and white blouse/top.

IMG_20170512_133750_114

~Nikki

 

Pretty Little Daggers

d5383ea9902a2b36a3a389e15c3d6fda

I’ve seen the power of a pretty face and body work magic on men. I’ve been skipped over, looked over, pushed out of the way to get to the prettier girl. I’ve been not spoken to standing next to the prettier friend. I’ve been in mid sentence and a man sees a hotter option, a bigger butt (in my community), a smaller waist, longer or straighter hair, and rushed to end our good convo to get to what his eyes are attracted to. I’ve had men get my number and constantly ask me about my friend. Let me be real and raw, weak and emotional in the eyes of others and un-christian like for many…but that shit used to hurt and every now and then those pretty little daggers grazes my self esteem. Either being out right told you’re not cute, you’re cute, you’re “alright”, if only you had a bigger ass, did it’s wear and tear on how I viewed myself and how I allowed the misuse of my heart, body and emotions. Side Note: If you have this super self esteem and can’t relate then this article is not for you and you’re “I never felt that way” is not welcomed here.

Well, Nikki, what did you do? It’s a long story, but basically after a series of bad relationships, mistreatment, emotional and mental abuse, via the Holy Spirit and God, books, positive women, self will, I slowly built my self esteem. Last year, I excavated my authentic self and boy did that take my self confidence to another level. Look, I just stopped by to tell you that you really do have other things to do than to be weighed down by if you are pretty enough or pretty at all. Like, who gives a damn. Are you dressing your best, are you doing the best you can with your hair (permed, weaved, or natural), are you a good woman, are you a positive being, are you going after your dreams, visions, goals? Are you building others up, clapping for their success? Are you not letting a man mistreat you and take you “down through there” (southern for drag you down a very bad road filled with heartbreaks aches and turmoil)? Are you choosing life over death? Are you a great mom, friend, sister, auntie, co worker, etc? You got “stuff” to do.

God made me perfect. God made me beautiful in every way. God made me beautiful inspite of.  God also made me strong. God also gave me an assignment. I had a friend who was extremely beautiful. She said to me one day when I asked her why did you sit by me in class? She said “Why not?” This was college. I replied, “I thought maybe you would want to huddle up with the prettier girls.” She laughed. “I thought you were smart and I am smart so I wanted to be around the smarter girl. The one that was asking questions and writing down notes because that is what I do. Pretty girls that are stuck on their beauty can be ruthless. It’s not all that it’s cracked up to be being amazingly beautiful.” Later I learned about her being in a relationship with this guy. She talked about how bad he treated her. She said, it doesn’t matter how fine I am, men still cheat. When you are in that group of fine girls who only care about looks, it’s all about competition. Then you have to deal with women thinking you want their man. I’m only in my 20’s and I am just like every real woman. I want to be seen for my heart, my mind, and not my body. You’re prettier than any of those women in that group in class. I saw how they flocked to me and I was like…nah…I’m just gonna come to school and go home.”

When a man is looking at my boobs and not at my face, I understand. When he talks about my body parts more than he talks about my brain, my geniusness, my dreams and goals, the current state of America, or about getting out and enjoying life, etc…it’s an automatic turn off for me. So, as the pretty little daggers sometimes hit, mostly miss these days…I am reminded…I’ve got so much more to do than to be weighed down by pretty or beautiful. My heart is fiery. My brain is wicked.

~Nikki