Sunday, March 31, 2013

There's an Army Rising Up!!!!

(This post contains a whole bunch of random thoughts. Read if you feel like randomness today!)

Geoffrey Canada

This past weekend, I went on a women's retreat with my sister and the ladies of her church, Shekinah Glory Fellowship Center. A song by Tasha Cobbs titled "Break Every Chain" seemed to be on the minds of most of the ladies, and we listened to it quite often. (If you have not heard this song, you MUST!)

Tracy and me on the retreat this weekend!

I listen to this song quite often, and in my mind I would see a lot of angels rising up to help us whenever we needed it; all we needed to do was make one step. However, one of the times that we listened to it this past weekend, I saw people standing with each other and forming an army. I can hear my Daddy saying that "God ain't coming down here to help nobody; he's going to have to use people." (We need an army.....)

Mom eating breakfast with a million Angels of protection around her!

My mom took a leap of faith and moved to Georgia, and she has an entire army. I am amazed that her army includes the people who work in the bank who know her and look out for her. The people at the Senior Citizen Recreational Center where she religiously goes; they all know her and seem thrilled when she shows up. The people of her church who look out for her, and this one man from her church whom she told me that she totally trust, because he can fix anything. I feel so secure with her being there, because she has a whole army........

I finished reading Geoffrey Canada's book Fist Stick Knife Gun last night in the airport, and I went into the ugly cry when I thought about the amount of time that is required to do what Geoffrey is doing; trying to provide a safe environment for children through his program: The Harlem Children's Zone. Geoffrey is one bad brother. But, just like you and me, Geoffrey needed an army to start and maintain this program. Initially,  his army may have been one or two people, but now his army is huge, and it includes the President of the United States. (Start with the army that you have, and grow it!)

I have taught in those tough inner city schools before, and I know the toll that they take on people: body, mind, and spirit. And, I have vowed that I will never go back; the work is sooooooo tough in so many ways. But, after reading Geoffery books Fist Stick Knife Gun, I feel the need to contact him and let him know that I want to be a part of his army. (I will contact him, but I will make sure that it is God and not my emotions that I act on.)

This is what Geoffrey stated in this book "If we are to save our children then we must become people they will look up to. Children need heroes now more than ever before because the poor children of this nation live  with monsters everyday." (P. 169). (Children need an army to rise up right NOW!)

D. Marshall is the guy with the white hat on!

This morning I thought about my friend, D. Marshall, who asked his running friends to run a half marathon with him two weeks ago. After talking to him, I realized that the race that we ran with him was his first half marathon, and he called his army to be with him as he ran this race. (His army rose, and he successfully finished the race.)

This morning I also thought about all of  the armies that I am a part of, and I thought about the people who are in my army........

There is no stopping us when our WHOLE army rises up!

Today is Easter Sunday, and we are celebrating the fact that Jesus ROSE...and that power that raised Jesus is in us, and we must use that power to build strong armies.....

Start an army and be a part of armies, because they are rising up........

Let me leave you with Tasha Cobbs doing what she do!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Born to Run by Christopher McDougall


This is a non-fiction book that starts off with a man whose feet are hurt from running, and he goes on this quest to try and find out the secrets to running free from pain and/or injuries.

There are so many stories within stories. I was able to follow them initially, and I found them quite interesting,  but Christopher continued to pile on more and more stories, and events, and characters... I could not keep it all straight after awhile.

It seems as if Christopher is a person who has a lot going on in his brain, and he literally tried to put everything that he knows about running into this one book. (He could always write more books right?)

I think that the point of this book is the idea that we were all Born to Run, but I am not quite sure about that. (Sorry!)

This book has tons of great reviews soooooo

If you read it and loved it, please tell me what I missed.

On to the next.......

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

What are you eating?

The Honorable Louis Farrakhan

"You are our future, but you are eating that which is killing you now. After you get your knowledge, you will be too sick to implement it." -Minister Louis Farrakhan during his keynote address at Tuskegee University

What are you eating, and I must add, and drinking............

Monday, March 25, 2013

Seize The Day!!!!

There is never a better time than RIGHT NOW!!!

Stop thinking about, and ACT on it NOW......

Friday, March 22, 2013

Chinua Achebe 1931-2013

Chinua Achebe

I remember when I first starting teaching in Detroit, I was a young, spunky teacher who really loved literature, and I desired to make ALL of my students lovers of literature.

That school in Detroit did not have many resources, but it did have class sets of Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, and I courageously, with all of my might, taught this novel to high school students. While teaching this novel to students, I fell in love with not just the novel, but I also fell in love with the author of the novel, Chinua Achebe, who had the audacity to write a novel that questioned both my students' and my beliefs.

I have had many discussions, read many essays, created a song, given many test all on Things Fall Apart.

I received an email stating that Chinua Achebe died today, and my heart is aching.....

I am extremely grateful that this man left something behind for the world to enjoy.

Sad and happy at the same damn time......

"The angels in heaven done signed his name."

Spring Break 2013

Around 1:30pm, I'll officially start Spring Break......

It's right on time!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym by Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allen Poe 1809-1849

Edgar Allan Poe is a name that is heard a lot in schools. In schools, people talk about him as if he is someone that they may know personally. If you mention him to a student, he or she might say "That Poe is crazy!" as if he/she talks to Poe all of the time.

I was talking to some colleagues about Poe, and we all agreed that his writings are bizarre, but they are sooo good; we love his writings. Some of our favorite Poe pieces are of course "The Raven," "The Fall of the House of Usher," "Tell-Tale Heart," "Annabel Lee," and "The Masque of the Red Death," just to name a few.

When I was doing my studies for the teaching of The Life of Pi, I read that the tiger, Richard Parker, that was on the life boat with Pi, was named after the character Richard Parker from The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym. So, I decided that I would read this book to see if I could make a connection between the two Richard Parkers, and I didn't, but I am still happy that I read The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym.

"The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket is the only complete novel written by American writer Edgar Allan Poe. The work relates the tale of the young Arthur Gordon Pym who stows away aboard a whaling ship called Grampus. Various adventures and misadventures befall Pym including shipwreck, mutiny, and cannibalism before he is saved by the crew of the Jane Guy. Aboard this vessel, Pym and a sailor named Dirk Peters continue their adventures further south. Docking on land, they encounter hostile black-skinned natives before escaping back to the ocean. The novel ends abruptly as Pym and Peters continue towards the South Pole." (Source: Poe, E. A. (1903). The Narrative of Gordon Pym. New York, NY: P.F. Collier and Son.)

This novel is written in true Poe fashion with lots of suspense. There were times when I literally could not stop reading, because I wanted to know what would happen next. At one point Arthur is hidden on this ship, and Poe writes this with such great suspense, until I was reading as fast as I could to find out what was going to happen to Arthur. Of course, he survives, but......You just never know how things will turn out when Poe is the writer.

Well, I read all 446 pages of this novel, and as stated earlier, it abruptly ended!

Poe or the editor explains that the last chapters were lost....

Even with the abrupt ending, I really enjoyed this book....

Poe never lets his readers down!!!!!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Still Alice by Lisa Genova

On a plane flying back to DC from Charlotte, the passenger sitting next to me and I started talking about books.

She recommended Still Alice by Lisa Genova, and I downloaded it and read it.

This is one of those books where the characters will stay with the reader long after the book is finished.

This is a fictional book, but Lisa makes the characters seem like people whom we know personally.

Alice and her husband, John, are both fifty year old Harvard professors who are thriving in their careers, and they have three, successful, grown children. Alice starts to forget things like how to get back home after a jog, and she is diagnosed with the early onset of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Lisa takes the reader through all of the stages of the disease with Alice. Eventually, Alice is no longer able to teach, read, have coherent conversations, remember her husband or children, dress herself etc. Alice's changes take a toll on her entire family. Her husband has to decide if he should take the job of his dreams in New York with no family around to help with Alice or stay in Boston where his family lives so that they can help him to take care of Alice.......

This book made me think about times when I have forgetten students' name, when I have gone into the kitchen and have forgotten what I had gone into the kitchen for, and times when I have forgotten other things. I was starting to feel a little paranoid, but I know that I am okay.

There were times during the book when Alice wished that she had been diagnosed with cancer because at least she could fight and maybe win. With Alzheimer's right now, the dreaded, complete memory lost is inevitable......

I absolutely love the characters and Lisa's writing style which helps the readers to understand Alzheimer's.

Read this book that really tugs at the heart....

Lisa Genova

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Rock and Roll DC

(This post is for my running friends D. Marshall, Corey, Tracey, Grant, and Reggie)

Representing New Orleans, Atlanta, Mobile and Mt. Vernon, Alabama!

I must start this post by talking about D. Marshall, fellow Tuskegee graduate. D. Marshall is a master organizer. He will send out a mass text or email inviting people to different events or his and Erika's, his wife, house. And, when he contacts people, people show up with no questions asked; It will be a gooooood time for all.

D. and Erika Marshall

Well, D. Marshall sent an email out to quite a few people asking us to run the Rock and Roll half marathon in  DC with him. Tracey and Grant had already already signed up, and then more of this running crew signed up.. 

Emails have been going back and forth with updates on our training and opportunities for training! This was quite exciting for me. It was encouraging to get an email from someone stating "I ran seven miles today."

If I commit to something; I do it, but.....

The week of the race, the meteorologists were predicting the weather to be about 37 degree with rain. I let my running people know that there was no way that I was going to run in cold weather and rain. I knew that they would talk about me real bad, but I was just going to take it this time.

The morning of the race I got up at 5:30 and there was no rain, I got up at 6am and there was no rain. I checked the weather channel and it stated that it was 51 degrees and it was going to start raining around 7. Soooo, I left my house and got to the starting point in time to run the race. (I sure was hoping for rain!!!)

My people, I am so happy that the meteorologists were wrong. I ran this race with my friends with no rain. This race was good for the body and the soul!!!!! (People Need Other People!)

It was so great to see Corey and D Marshall on the course. Grant passed me and gave me a high five and that gave me a boost that I needed. Corey caught up with me, and we ran together for a while and talked much trash about that big a@# hill that was on the course. Around mile 11, D. Marshall and I met up and finished the race together...Oh, how I needed D. Marshall when he showed up. (People need other people!)

After the race, we all met up at our meeting spot that was decided upon by D. Marshall, and we laughed and talked and eventually left... My body was sore, but my soul was happy!!!

We look good after running 13.1 miles RIGHT????

We finished together!

Reggie is running in the Marine Corp Marathon in October!

The Dream Team!!!

I wanted an out, but I didn't get it soooo.......

The rain held up, and we ran the race.

I can't wait for OUR next one.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!!!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Friday, March 15, 2013

"She Was Wrong for That!"

One of my students sent me an email and asked me if she could do her individual novel presentation on Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston. Being that Their Eyes Were Watching God is one of my all time favorite books, I instantly replied "Yes," and I told her that I would help her if she needed any help.

Well, the day of the presentation, she came to class a little late, and she did not seem to be prepared, but I was still hopeful.

She got up to do her presentation, and she did not do this wonderful novel justice.

I cringed throughout the presentation and did an awesome job of holding my tongue.

But, when she finished, I had to let her know that "She was wrong for that!"

I can't believe that she butchered Their Eyes Were Watching God!

She was wrong for that....

Shaking my head!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg

Being a woman and our place in this world have been on my mind heavily. I've read quite a few books that really made me think about what I want for myself as a woman, and Lean In answered so many of my questions.

My sister, Tracy, saw Sheryl Sandberg on Good Morning American, and she bought the book. Once she started reading it, she thought that it may be something that I might like based on the conversations that we have been having about women.

Well, I LOVED this book. I started reading it on Tuesday night, and I rushed home yesterday to devour every word of this book.

I have always thought that "I am to radical," "I am on the wrong track," "What I want  for my life is not attainable," and this book helped me to see that I am ok.... I can have what I want for my life.......

When I bought my condo ten years ago, one of my sisters asked me "What about when you get a husband?" At that time I was not thinking about getting married; I was not even dating anyone seriously. So, I could not understand why she thought that I should be making decisions based on a husband and kids who were no where in sight. I figured that I would cross that husband and kid bridge when I got to it. But, I needed to deal with the NOW, and the NOW was the fact that I was a working, single woman who wanted to own property, and so I bought a condo.

Also, I love to go away in the summer to study different topics. It is such great professional development, it really helps to keep me passionate about teaching, and I love to learn. But, I have had so many people tell me that once I get married, I would not be able to do these programs anymore. People made me feel that being married would take away any freedom that I would have for personal growth. They never thought that I may marry a man who respects that I love to learn and that we would do whatever it takes to make sure that we both do the things that enhance us.

These are just a few examples of the things that have been on my mind, and I must admit that I feel very vulnerable sharing them.

Lean In spoke to my heart.

Here are some of my take aways from this book:

1. "We (women) internalize the negative messages that say it's wrong to be outspoken, aggressive, more powerful than men. We lower our expectations of what we can achieve. We continue to do the majority of the housework and child care. We compromise our career goals to  make room for partners and children who may not even exist yet" (P.10-11). 

2. In talking about her own life Sheryl states "By the age of twenty-five, I had managed to get married and divorced. At that time, this felt like a massive personal and public failure. For many years, I felt that no matter what I accomplished professionally, it paled in comparison to the scarlet D stitched on my chest. Almost ten years later I learned that the "good ones" were not taken... "(P.20).

3. "Our country lags considerable behind others in efforts to help parents take care of their children and stay in the workforce. Of all the industrialized nations in the world, the United States is the only one without a paid maternity leave policy (P.25). 

4. "Employed women reap rewards including greater financial security, more stable marriages, better health, and, in general, increased life satisfaction." (26). I would like to add that Sheryl in no way makes it seems that a woman needs to work outside of the home, but she does say that is awesome that women have choices.

5. "Fear is at the root of so many of the barriers that women face. Fear of not being liked. Fear of making the wrong choice. Fear of drawing negative attention. Fear of overreaching. Fear of being judged. Fear of failure. And the holy trinity of fear: the fear of being a bad mother/wife/daughter" (P27). 

6. "Hard work and results should be recognize by others, but when they aren't, advocating for oneself is necessary. As discussed earlier, this must be done with care. But it must be done" (P.63)

7. Anyone who wants her mate to be a true partner must treat him as equal - and equally capable- partner. And if that's not reason enough, bear in mind that a study found that wives who engage in gatekeeping behaviors do five more hours of family work per week than wives who take a more collaborative approach (P. 105). 

8. When looking for a partner, my advice to women is date all of them: the bad boys, the cool boys, the commitment-phobic boys, the crazy boys. But do not marry them. The things that make the bad boys sexy do not make them good husbands. When it comes time to settle down, find someone who wants an equal partner. Someone who thinks that women should  be smart, opinionated  and ambitious...... These men exist and, trust me, over time, nothing is sexier (P. 111).

9. "If I had to embrace a definition of success, it would be that success is making the best choices we can.... and accepting them" (P.134). 

10. "The more women help one another, the more we help ourselves" (P. 157). 

Even while writing this, I am feeling a lot of doubt, and Sheryl talks a lot about doubt in her book. I am thinking "I hope that my readers do not think that I am against marriage," "That I am some radical feminist," "That I hate men," "My career means more to me than family....."

Well, today I am publicly denouncing those feelings of self doubt that I sometimes have about my feelings and thoughts about being a woman and what I want for my life; I am who I am!

I can not control what people think about me, and I will not try to. I am who I am!

Sheryl Sandberg is an incredible woman, and I am so happy that she had the courage to write this book that will FREE a lot of women like myself.

Sheryl, I am Leaning In!

Sheryl Sandberg

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Chinese Cinderalla by Adeline Yen Mah

At the beginning of the school year, one of the students recommended Chinese Cinderella, and I read it.

This book is set in China during World War II. No, this story is not about War at all. As a matter of fact, the war has a very small impact on the story.

This story is actually the true story of Adeline Yen Mah whose mother died while giving birth to her. Because of this, Adeline was viewed as bad luck and was not given any attention by anybody in her family except her Grandfather and Aunt.

Adeline's sister told her "If you had not been born, Mama would still be alive. She died because of you. You are bad luck," and this statement basically dominated Adeline's life.

She is sent away to boarding school, and her family never visited her. And, she was rarely given the opportunity to go home.

However, through Adeline's grandfather's encouragement, reading, and studying, she became top of her class, earned a great writing award that convinced her father to send her to college, and she became a medical doctor.

Like many people, Adeline faced obstacles, but she made it........

This book is written in a very simplistic style that young adults would absolutely love. However, there is no reason why an older reader would not enjoy this book as well.

Read, read, read and be inspired by Adeline.

Adeline Yen Mah

Join me as I start to read Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg....

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Second Chances......

I've been reading my students' essays on Romeo and Juliet, and I was feeling that self-doubt that I sometimes feel as a teacher. The first seven or eight papers were not on the right track at all. I was beginning to wonder if I did my job of helping them to write their essays.

However, I got to essay number eight and nine, and THEY GOT IT!

Oh, how I really needed that confirmation...

If all of the papers were completely in left field somewhere, then that would mean that as teacher, I failed at teaching that lesson and would need to reteach the steps to write this particular type of essay. 

But, I am sooo thankful that I do not need to reteach ALL of the students, but provide more details for those students who are somewhere in left field; I did not totally miss the mark this time.

I bet you did not know that this much thought went into teaching, but it does.

I am constantly evaluating the students and me. I have my doubts at time, but I always know that I have another opportunity to reteach the lessons that totally bummed. 

We are given second chances,......and sometimes third chances when we need them.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Spring Forward...

Not sure about anybody else, but I absolutely love daylight savings time.

I love those long days....Sooooo many things can be done!

Sunlight causes me to wear myself out; but I still love it. (I find it difficult to sleep as long as the sun is out.)

So, tonight, I will happily SPRING FORWARD, not just my clock either, but my life also...It's time for a change...

Spring makes EVERYTHING better!

Let's Spring Forward People.

Friday, March 8, 2013

Extremely Grateful Today!

I am feeling extremely grateful today...

On my FAKE snow day, my area did not get any snow, I had lots of time to think about how grateful I am.

I am extremely grateful that I have lots of time to read and write. I started this blog almost two years ago, and I have completely fallen in love with writing. There are times when I feel very vulnerable about sharing things that I write, but I hit the publish button anyway. I have lots of thoughts all of the time, but once I get the thoughts out of my brain, I seem to feel peace and clarity. I use to feel guilty about the amount of time that I have to do whatever I want to do, but now I feel total gratitude for the time.

I am extremely grateful that I got the revelation about how important my temple is. Once I got that revelation, my happiness level went higher. My energy level is to the sky; I do a whole lot of jumping around and that makes me feel happy and youthful.... I have learned that when I have an entire day where I eat things that are good for me and a Berhane style workout, I go to sleep feeling very satisfied. Because I love that feeling, I make sure that I continue to do what makes me feel good over and over and over. I no longer think "I can't wait until I can eat whatever I want to," because I do eat whatever I want to, and it happens to be things that I absolutely love: fruit, vegetables, cottage cheese, nuts, peanut butter, oatmeal.

I am extremely grateful that I know some of the best people in the world. I met some friends in Charlotte last weekend, and I am still feeling empowered from that meet-up. It was so good to be with other ladies and hang out with a lot of men who made us feel like we were in our early twenties. Ted, a friend whom I went to Tuskegee with, called to say "Hi," and I think that we may meet up later tonight, and that means lots and lots of laughter. My phone does not ring a lot, but when it does, it's normally someone whom I really appreciate hearing from. My favorite time to talk on the phone is early in the morning, and I know that Sonya and Jennifer are always available to talk sometime between 6 and 7AM, and you know that I appreciate that.

Some of the best people in the World!

I am extremely grateful for change, the seasons, summer programs for teachers, swimming pools, biking and running groups, the best personal trainer in the entire world, money for new tires, that trouble don't last always, colleagues that I like, my blog readers, my mom, South Beach, a hot shower, I can get emails on my cell phone, water, green tea, knee high boots, the people who recognize and smile at me in all of my regular spots.

I am extremely grateful that I recognize that I have grown a lot, but I still have a long way to go. Soooo, PLEASE be patient with me, God is not through with me with yet!

People.... I am grateful, grateful, grateful......

And I must tell my creator


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Patty is back, and she is Winning!!!


A few months back, I wrote a post about working out with Patty.

At that time, Patty was getting ready to have a mastectomy.

Well, Patty had the mastectomy and ten lymph nodes removed, and she is back and is working out with the greatest trainer in the world, Berhane. (Amazing!)

Patty and Berhane

Monday, Berhane told me that Patty had been working out, and I was in total disbelief. I thought that after her surgery, she would need a long time to recover. However, two weeks after surgery, here are some of the things that Patty has been doing:

Patty told me that after her surgery, she would not be allowed to leave the hospital until she could stand up on her own. Well, thanks to Berhane, who makes us sit and stand while holding one leg in the air, within 24 hours of surgery, Patty was able to stand and go home. (God is good!)

Berhane, who takes our health seriously, told me that when Patty returned, her stomach was a little puffy, and he asked her about her diet. Patty explained to me that she was nauseated at times and was told to eat foods that she could keep on her stomach. Of course, the list included foods that Berhane would never approve of such as sorbet, which is high in sugar. And, when Patty returned, Berhane knew right away that she had been eating foods high in sugar, and I know that she was given the Berhane speech about eating foods that are good for the body. (Berhane will not let us use any excuses EVER!)

A few days before the mastectomy and lymph node removal, Patty was on vacation at Disney World, and she saw a sign that stated "You can not do anything alone; you need other people," and Patty has found this quote to be true with her fight with cancer. Patty stated that there were times when she would literally crawl to the car, because she was not feeling well enough to work out, and Berhane would say to her "Get up, and think that there is nothing wrong with you," and she would do just that and complete her workouts AND feel better. (Berhane accepts no excuses, and People need other people!)

Patty needed to be able to raise her hands over her head in order to start radiation, and with the help of Berhane, she was able to raise her hands over her head, and she starts radiation today. (GLORY!!)

Now, Patty's story is one that must told:

Patty is a health care professional who had mammograms every year. Because she has thick breast tissue, her last mammogram showed nothing in the breast area and no lumps were felt on the clinical exams by four different doctors. They only found a swollen lymph node. Patty had a biopsy on the lymph node, and it showed that she had breast cancer and then the MRI showed three tumors with one being 3.7 centimeters. And, the journey began........

Despite the Stage III Breast Cancer Diagnosis, chemotherapy treatments, major surgery, and the current radiation treatments, Patty's strong, positive energy surrounds us all.

Patty has a strong group of friends who are helping her to research how lives can be saved through proper diagnosis for women with thick breast tissue. Patty wants to make sure that others DO NOT end up with late stage cancer that could be prevented with proper diagnosis.

Well, you know that I love Robin Roberts and her courage, and so does Patty. Patty's spirituality is getting her through this, and Robin’s quote “ This too shall pass; now will be good!” is taped to Patty's bathroom mirror.

Now, Patty is proof that working out is good for the body, our diets are extremely important, that people need other people, and the idea that anything is possible.....

Patty has experienced an outpouring of love that she surely appreciates and can never get enough of....... Sooooo, keep it coming!

Patty continue to inspire us PLEASE!!!!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I received what I was expecting: A SNOW DAY!

I checked the TV quite a few times during the night, and I finally got the message; school would be closed today.

So, this morning, I finished reading Half of a Yellow Sun. What a treat!!!

This book tells the story of the Nigeria-Biafra War that took place from 1967-70. The Nigeria-Biafra War was the Nigerian Civil War. Chimamanda tells this story though the characters Ugwu, Odenigbo, Olanna, Richard, and Kainene.

Olanna and Kainene are twin sisters who come from a wealthy family, and both Olanna and Kainene are women who are educated, free-thinking, and are in love with men who love them back. Not sure about you, but this is the first book that I have read that talks about Black Africans who were rich and the women are free thinking and have great love stories.....

Ogenigbo is a well-educated Black African man who works at the University, and he loves Olanna, and Richard is an Englishman who has moved to Nigeria and respects the Nigerian culture and loves Kainene. Chimamanda writes about these men, their careers, and their love for their women with great respect and care. (I really appreciate any book that talks about men, and especially men of color, with respect.)

We see what happens to the characters once the war starts, and we also see how complicated life can be at times. Chimimanda does a great showing that Black Africans are people just like all other people.

This is a must-read!

By the way, at the beginning of this school year, my school showed the faculty a video of a young woman of African descent, and she was talking about the dangers of telling a single story. You know that I believe that when it comes to African American women, there is this single story of us being super strong, and we can and will take a whole lot and still remain standing. I reject this single story for myself, because I find it quite damaging. However, when I saw this video on "The Danger of the Single Story," I decided, right then, that I would teach novels about people of color as not a single story but just a story, because there is no one single story for any race, gender etc.

Well, the person who was in that video was non-other than Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author of Half of a Yellow Sun.

Here is the video:

My people, make it your business to get to know Chimamanda and another story about people of African descent....

Happy Snow Day!

Time to read Chinese Cinderalla by Adeline Yen Mah..... Join me......

Tuesday, March 5, 2013


I am expecting SNOW tomorrow....

Yep, I said it!

I'm expecting snow tomorrow.....

AND, the expectation of snow has me extremely excited.

The DC area handles snow just like any other part of the South; IT CAN"T HANDLE IT!

It does not take much snow to shut down the schools, government, restaurants etc.

So, you might ask, "What will I do tomorrow if school is closed?"

I will watch Good Morning American, cook all of my meals from scratch, read, write, grade papers, and even do some RELAXING!

It is amazing how happy I am, because I am expecting something that I want, not necessary need, to happen.

What are you expecting that has you excited?

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