I know a lot of you are working from home (or searching from home) due to Miss Rona.
Yes, I will call her Miss Rona because I don’t want her catching an attitude and showing more of her tail in 2021.
I have, however, been in the office full time for a few months. My 9 to 5 is in fashion photography, and that can’t be done by zoom. Well… maybe it could be, but it damn sure wasn’t. So, since April (maybe May), I have been masking up and sanitizing down to make sure you can buy that cool tee or dope sweatshirt online.
I am not going to go into a workplace rant. I want to but I just can’t do it. It is weird how this all works. For those without a job, there is the anxiety of being unable to take care of yourself and your loved ones. For those with a job, there is the anxiety of wondering when you will be furloughed next. Normal conversations you would have with your friends about how much you are overloaded with work or wish you could take a long weekend seem painfully insensitive. You are the lucky one. Right? It is the least you can suffer to have a job. Right? Only a selfish horrible person would complain. Right? I know survivor’s guilt is usually saved for those who have escaped catastrophic calamity or traumatic event. But hell after 10 months of this pandemic, increased awareness by people who usually don’t care fear of police brutality, and the economic fragility, my mind and body are tired.
My first letter to you my dear reader was not supposed to go like this. It was to be about my joy over adding two tumblers to my new, but exponentially growing collection.
I was going to introduce you to the outrageous community of people that buy Starbucks cups/tumblers from all over the world for upwards to 10x the retail cost.
I was going to hang my head in shame telling you how I fell prey to the frenzy for my Pride tumbler. Well a little shame because I am a lesbian… and I deserved that tumbler.
I was going to share with you the group of women that look just like me where we chat and celebrate our newest conquest.
I wasn’t going to tell you how they bring me small (even if ridiculous) slivers of joy, after braving public transportation and enduring temperature scans to get through the door of work.
Or how I take big gulps of water from them, every time an email goes out that another coworker has tested positive.
Or about how I wondered how much I could get for them, if my furlough was next.
This was supposed to be a different letter all together…. maybe next time.
I plan to write posts from all over the country as I continue this journey, but I am not sure this will occur again. I am coming to you live and in color from my… bathroom. I thought this was apropos because this is where the magic will happen. Why? Because today I am writing about Yoni Steaming. Yes it is exactly what you think it is.
First things first, let’s discuss what yoni steaming is. Yoni steaming, which is also called vagina steaming, is kind of like a facial for your vagina. While you are sitting on a herb filled pot of hot (but not boiling) water, the steam rises through your lady parts and gives it a little pick me up. The herbs tone and rejuvenate your vajajay inside and out.
Now I have heard of yoni steaming over the years a handful of times. This isn’t some new fad at all. Yoni steaming can be seen in different cultures for hundreds of years. Women all over the world use it as part of their self care routine. This time, I decided to actually give it a go. Marty mentioned it during one of our sister chats (along with April) and I knew it was a sign. The benefits of yoni steaming seemed great, with some that definitely peaked my interest.
Improve period bleeding that is brown or black in colour.
Reduce period pain and discomfort
Helps to restore bacterial and PH balance to aid in prevention of infections, bacterial vaginosis and odor.
Detoxify your mind, body and soul
Before I get any further, and I am sure that most of you already know this BUT your vagina is self cleaning. So while this “cleanses”, your vagina doesn’t need any help.
So off to Amazon I went for my Sew Right starter kit. I know I know there are herbalists and healers that create their own but I wanted to introduce it into my Sunday self care routine ASAP.
I chose the Female Rituals Steam Therapy (1 Ounce) package. The two reasons I went with this one was that a) it was the brand that Marty recommended and b) they had a small 1 oz offering (enough for 1-2 steams), so I could try them out.
As I write and steam, I can tell you some first impressions. It smells really floral and has a calming effect that I like. Before I even sat down, the aroma took over my house. It is like a really fragrant herbal tea. The scent plus the steam are giving me a really relaxed feeling. The tensions of my week are melting away, if only for a minute. I can definitely see myself having a good rest after I finish this and my pamper day skincare routine.
Now you can use a pot and sit it in your toilet but… yeah that was a no for me. Or you can get really fancy and buy a Yoni Steam Chair but… while I am down to buy a bougie item or two for selfcare day… that was also a no for me.
This sitz bath sat right into my toilet with a vent space and once I am done I will be able to simply dispose of the herbs and wash it out for next time.
So here are the steps that I did.
Put the sitz bath in the toilet with half a package (1/2 an ounce of herbs)
Boiled water in my tea pot and poured the hot water into the mix.
Steep herbs for 10 minutes in the water
Grabbed a bottle of water so I didn’t get dehydrated and got undressed.
Covered myself with a blanket to keep in the steam and put my laptop on top
Blogged with you all in tow. (Next time I think I will read a book)
Steamed for about 20-25 minutes.
Disposed of the herbs and rinsed the sitz
Laying down with the rest of my water for a bit, finishing up this post and watching Living Single on Hulu.
I plan to definitely incorporate yoni steaming into my moon cycles. They say to do it a week before your period (but definitely not while on your period). I am getting conflicting information about how often to do it, but I think for myself I would like to do it 2-3 times a month on my Sunday ritual. I feel so relaxed and in tune to “her” right now and I want to keep that going.
Have you ever done a Yoni Steam aka Vaginal Steaming? How did you like it? How do you incorporate it into your routine? Do you have any tips for someone using it? Comment below and tell me what you think. Can’t wait to hear from you!
So I know I am often late to the party… it’s not because I don’t want to be there but sometimes I take the scenic route. That’s how I feel about queer artist Kelela and her song “Bank Head”
This is not new by any stretch of the imagination (it came out in 2013) but I heard it just a while ago on set for the first time. I didn’t know who sang it or even the name but it was a vibe that my spirit needed. A lightning speed download of Shazam later (which I didn’t even know was still around) and I was on it. Ever since I have listened to it no less that 50 times, each time vibing like it is brand new.
Chocolate City born, second-generation Ethiopian American, Kelela who was featured on Solange’s Scales, is the epitome of dope black queer everythingness. Her beauty alone is stark and stunning. Hard stop. But once I fell into the rabbit hole that is Al Gore’s internet, I realized her voice was strong and impactful even outside of the studio. She speaks vulnerably and honestly about her experiences in life, love and the black experience. *deep gutteral sigh*
When I close my eyes and hear this song, I picture a dark club where everyone is dancing in what seems like a blur except for me and HER. Lasers of different colors cascade over our glistening black bodies as we move slowly to the drop beat… yeah it is one of those songs. Sexuality in plain sight until… as the song goes “time goes by”
I have been really excited and in love with my morning routine for the last few weeks.
For those that know me, I have been on a whole life affirming journey. As I am working on my next upcoming chapter (more coming — stay tuned), I have realized that I need to be more diligent and deliberate in how I spend my time and reach my goals.
I am a creature of habit. Both good habits and bad, if I’m honest. When my life is a mess, it is a BIG MESS. When my life is on an upward trajectory, I am a whole mood. I have to be intentional about every aspect of my life so I decided the morning is the way to set the pace. Is it just me or if you have a great morning, your day goes better?
For the record, this post is for sure not trying to get you to do my routine. It is just a post to share how I figured out what works for me and hopefully it will give you a little zhuzh  …I know for ME my routine gets me feeling awake, productive and affirmed before the day starts going. Here goes…
I used to hate waking up. For some reason, my body knows exactly when my alarm is getting ready to go off, which coincidentally felt like 5 minutes before I was supposed to wake up. Every morning without fail l, I would hit the snooze button 3 times before I actually got up. By the last buzzer, I was jumping up and running around the house in order to get out of the house for work. It started my day feeling stressed out and rushed. And often my day would continue just like that.
I have now moved my charger and phone to the other side of the room so I have to physically get up and go turn it off. By the time I focus my eyes and make the first step, I am up. For full disclosure, I have been tempted to walk back over to the bed once or twice (I’m still growing) but for the most part I have kept it moving.
Set the mood.
Once I have my slippers on, I make my way to my half bathroom.
For the most part I am a night shower-er (unless I have gotten up super early or need a little extra), so my half bathroom is my zen place for my facial routine. The first thing that I do is light my candles. I have been in love with the candles I have been using from Queen Mary Candle, Co here in Miami. They are hand poured and smell amazing. I sent batches out in my birthday gift boxes this year. They were hit.
Next I activate the “Daily Affirmations” on my Amazon Fire dot. Today I was told that I am strong, healthy and powerful. I repeat my affirmation 4 or 5 times in a row while I am setting up my skincare.
Once I have gotten ready, I start my Anthony Hamilton Pandora channel. Aside from the fact that I love his music, the channel has a great mix of soulful tunes and spiritual music. It will go from Solange to Tamela Mann to Jaheim. It is a good time, and I can pretend I am on the newest episode of Sunday Morning Best or the Voice.
Wash On. Wash Off.
So I am trying to decide if I should make this part a separate blog post. I worked with April King of Glamour Impulse to create the best regimen for my daily skin care. I have added a few tweaks to it but it has definitely made my skin reach a new level of bombness. Between her blog, her Instagram and her YouTube channel, I am very excited about what she is going to introduce me to next .
Let’s just say, I do 7-10 steps every morning and a varied routine every night. Yes I will definitely do another post full of product links later. The response that I have gotten from those who have seen me has been so positive. I work in the fashion and beauty industry for my 9 to 5, so when a legit celebrity makeup artist  gives you a high five… you take it.
Most of the times I don’t wear makeup but definitely make sure my face is moisturized and the rest of my body is shea buttered up.
So after I have revived my skin, I take a moment and revive internally. Since I am doing intermittent fasting, I don’t have breakfast but I make sure to drink my first 8 oz of water before I get dressed.
I blow out my candle (because I don’t want to burn my house down) and say bye to Alexa. I am ready to go.
With everything going on, I was struggling to find my peace and my happy. I felt anxious about going to work, I felt guilty for having a job to go to. It was an odd mix of survivors’ guilt and feeling like a sacrificial lamb. With the help of loving friends and self reflection, I have gotten better at being ok. On the way to work, I text some of the most important people in my life. I chat with my friend Gennie, I send a daily check in on Mama K Word and have now introduced a new “love on y’all” text with my sisters. Everyone of them sow positivity and light into my life, so I want to start their days off with some too.
Now let’s keep it real. Does this routine happen perfectly every day? Nah. Nope. Chiiiiile. Do I feel bad when I miss a step or two? Only for a second. The best thing about the routine is that it has a lasting effect. If I mess up one day, the affirmation and love from the day before keeps me going until I get back on target the next day.
In general use, ‘zhuzh’ tends to mean “to improve in appearance by way of a slight adjustment.” Sidenote I legit that zhuzh was a Yiddish word that old Jewish mothers used over mahjong… Guess I was wrong. Shout out to Carson from Queer Eye.
I have purchased many high end candles in my day but I love these. They last 2 weeks and are fun to try out. (I have one fragrance for my morning routine and another for my evening routine).
Though my wallet is looking a little nervous. Beauty hurts… my bank account.
Celebrity artist like iconic, A lister, supermodel knowing celebrity artist. No shade to instagram celebs.
With all of the things going on last week, from the helicopter crash death of nine people, including NBA legend Kobe Bryant to my super fun time at the Super Bowl opening night, I missed posting about the Grammys.
But I would be remiss to not give a super loud congratulations to South Beach’s own Tracy Young for being the first woman ever nominated in the Best Remixed Recording category… AND WINNING!
Tracy is a legend with over 25 years in the game. She has done remixes with LITERALLY every one of your faves. We are talking Beyoncé, Gaga, Rihanna, Britney, Madonna and other one name superstars. She even collabed with our forever FLOTUS, Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama * consider my pearls clutched *.
She is a whole mood and a boss.
Congratulations to my Sappho sister (in case you had any question whether she rode the pink rainbow)!
Is this dude really serious? See I would be wrong if I slapped the shit out of him. As I looked around the bedroom I shared with David, my man of the last 5 years, I couldn’t believe I was actually in this situation. I was hoping something would happen and I would wake up out of this crazy ass nightmare but there was absolutely nothing that could erase my reality.
As I walked into the living room and saw his dumb ass sitting there with the nerve to have tears in his eyes, I shook my head to stop my rage. All the times that I sat there waiting and praying that he came home in one piece. All the times I begged him to spend quality time with me, and now he wants to cry? I guess he finally realized that I was not EVER coming back. It only took 3 little… no 3 BIG ASS letters. S T D. This asshole gave me CHLAMYDIA! When that fake Facebook account inboxed me that I should get myself checked out, I was shocked. I wanted to ignore it and chalk it up to it being one of the scandalous hoes that had been chasing him for years, but something told me that this was some something to follow up on. A trip to planned parenthood and it was confirmed my dude had a dirty ass dick.