what’s not to like

Growing up I didn’t care for my side profile.

I had a flat face or a pie face as I was teased lol. At 27, I remember saying “I am sick and tired of picking myself apart.” Went back natural and haven’t looked back.

I intentionally picked those parts I had a problem with and chose to accentuate it, accept it and love it.

More side pics of that flat face.

Bright red lipsticks for my full lips.

And smile as often as I can with my gap.

It was all in my head, literally, vanity.

No one was even concerned about my flaws like I was or I was too unbothered to notice by then. That same thinking has carried me through motherhood and this new body.

Its really easy to pick apart all the things that are wrong with you, lose a little weight here, nip and tuck there but even easier to just embrace it.

Make it yours.

There only one you.

At 40 I see some shit just ain’t gone change.

Genetics. But in this millennial world I have relating cliches…live tour best life!

You’ve got people depending on it Mama!

God don’t make no mistakes. Your flaws are your purpose whether it be to change them or flaunt them in all their beauty.

You are the ONLY thing that will is consistent throughout your entire journey in life. So you better like yourself.

I say all that to say side profiles make my shit look fly-er!!

I make jewelry to and this was a customer request.

The 2nd pic is motherhood while working… I see you boy! Get down!

What parts of you have you grown to love?

xo,

Advertisements

ready, start 40-ish mom

***the opinions expressed on LCC are just that, MY two cents. ***

Fawty is approaching fast, like in 4 months. But I welcome it.

I’ve been blogging for about three years and I always felt I had a bit of a late start. I’m 39 with a 2 and 1 year old. Yeah… I started late. I began journaling my transition into motherhood to vent and record the process of pregnancy but eventually it turned into a blog to reach out and connect with other moms.

I’m finding this blogger world is filled with beautiful, vivacious twenty and thirty something millennial moms and I’m just not relating at times.

Sure, motherhood is a connection in itself but I need to hear from women who made or didn’t have a choice at making babies this late in the game. Is it a good decision or should we have done it way sooner?

No regrets here…. yeah right. The energy alone it takes to keep up with kids is a pro for babies early. But the time for me to have my babies was the time for me to have them.

Photo by Kita Bryant

First I have to decide what is or thought was a successful blog to me.

Paid.

I see that’s not as easy either. Of course the main goal would be to gain tons of followers and paid advertisements, but at 40 is that really the point.

40, I welcome you with open arms. Grudges are lost, memories matter + kindness is power.

It feels like patience, serenity, flow and grace. .

Is that you GOD?

Now my definition of success has transitioned and for the better. Being successful is connecting with a community of women of color over 40 who want to make positive changes in their lives as well as in their families and communities. I mean it’s our duty and rites of passage as we age in society, to make it better for the new group of moms.

Trill mothers.

I want to inspire women in midlife! And from what I see there aren’t many 40-ish fabulous women of color blogs out there besides fashion and beauty and that is sparse too. Some of us are glamorous and some not fancy, all the time I should say. I clean up well. It’s just beauty and fashion are low on my list with #dembabies. Plus I need help in styling a 40 year old body, yes LAWD somebody help me.

I remember being in my 20s and I looked up to older women mostly not my peers. The beauty, the class, the grace, the confidence…..YES!!!

I’ll put up a post or two on anti-aging or age defying tricks lol…that’s the beauty medium I’m categorized in at 40. Post some outfits besides the mom uniforms. I don’t want to go backwards, sure my 20s were fun but it was a confusing time for me trying to work through life.

So I’ll just remain me.

J a d a.

The plain Jane, the girl next door and hope you find something that ignites a flame, inspires or creates a space where you are able to find what makes you truly happy with your life and yourself.

Whether it is family, love, lifestyle, beauty or fashion I hope you will join me on my journey through 40-ish.

I started a Facebook group called Ready, Start 40-ish

for black moms beginning families 40ish.. just to connect personally with followers… I really hate that word.. working on another term. Please join our 2 member group for now lol.

So good day for now Mamas!

What inspires you right now in the moment? What are some of your over 40 blogs, I’d love to follow?

Blessings!!

xo,

Jada

less is really more

I have been searching and researching this new minimalist lifestyle that I am hearing about everywhere.

I began my journey following the duo The Minimalists on IG…. check them out. Basically, their take is to find the value in your daily life without the excess that we bury ourselves in each day. This leads to comparison, depression, anxiety and a host of other illnesses that pretty much piggy back off of each other.

Some minimalist have the extreme ideology to live with less than 100 items in their homes including the home and cars. Now at first their take for me seemed a bit extreme at first… I mean only 100 items, that alone took care of my hair products and bathroom necessities alone. Every negative excuse I could think of kept popping up in this head of mine.

Shut up Jada and keep reading.

Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelm. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.

I have to say this style of living seems all too familiar growing up. We were not amongst the 1% sometimes not event the other 99% lol but we were able to maintain and afford the necessities and a few luxuries.

The looks I stumble upon courtesy of my bae Pinterest, seems to involve neutral colors, earth tones, lots of plants and basic accessories.

I really like this last one with the DIY table and night stand. It definitely feels like home growing up and right up my alley for a DIY!

These pictures just give me peace and zen looking at it so I had to go for it and try it out…..small steps so the bathroom is first.

I started with my bath tub area. Unfortunately, I cleared out everything before taking a before shot. Now my bathroom is red from the previous owner so the lighting wasn’t as clear. We’re moving soon so this neutral theme will take place at our new home.

I love candles…. my ideal bathroom has loads of candles surrounding the tub, so this will do for now.

I have plants…. I’m surprised they’ve lived so long to be truthful.

I tossed the clutter out. I actually felt a bit of relief. My tub had three soap dish holders, body wash bottles, loofahs, scrubs, razors, toys, scattered around aimlessly. Now some might say isn’t that just a good old fashioned cleaning? Sure but the object is to toss out the old, keep ONE item of product and not accumulate. Not allowing the clutter to reappear and distract you from what’s more important.

This may not work for everyone, in fact you don’t have to go as far as clearing all items out. If you have an eye for decorating and the need to have a beautiful home then by all means go for it. The object is to get you into a space that is clean, clutter free and ultimately gives you a chance to focus on what has intangible value in your life and how you can obtain more of it. To not give so much emphasis and value to things.

It gives you freedom from worry.

Life FEELS completely different when you don’t force it.

So I hope you will follow along on my minimal lifestyle quest. This isn’t a process that happens overnight. I’m sure I will fall back many times before accomplishing this process, it could take several years before you actually grasp the concept. Baby steps! Start with a 21 day challenge and grow from there. But it’s worth the wait to me!

Xoxo,

Jada

being a black stay at home mom

I have run into this question often “So what are you doing in your spare time since the kids are in school now” or “don’t you want to work and have your own money?

Why?

Are you in my business?

Why is it so hard to believe that a stay at home mom can be black too? I’ve been at this for about two and a half years now and trust, it is not as easy or as glamorous some Moms make it out to be ALL the time.  Everybody cannot be a stay at home mom.  I have been working since I was 14 and it was a challenge to let go and completely depend on someone for everything.  Now that we are a one income family of four, budgeting is key!

I’m still struggling with that one y’all!

My fiance and I agreed that we were both comfortable with me being home with the kids at least for the first two to three years.  I bounced back and forth about whether I would homeschool them or not. Still deciding? The kids began school this year, Apple at age 2 and although I planned on keeping my youngest, Dos, with me another year, a spot at the daycare opened up so I had to jump on it quickly.   So off he went at 11 months. Yikes! They are both doing well and making developmental progress as well. I love that if the school calls and needs me to come and see about my babies or just to answer the phones for a few hours, I’m out!!

One call, that’s all….about dem babies!!

Now, what do I do all day?

At first, I literally thought that I would be able to catch up on a little sleep, cleaning and other mundane activities in the house.  But it seemed as though the more time I have, the more errands that needed to be ran.  Being a stay a stay at home mom is a business that needs a great manager(s) for the household to run like a well oiled machine.  Lots of budgeting, time management, networking, finding new mommy friends, chef, maid, healer, comforter, therapist, doctor, teacher, LAUNDRY, so much freakin’ laundry, personal stylist and personal assistant to the bread winner, WHEW!!!

Who said I don’t work?

And most importantly keeping my family happy!

I don’t think white women or any other ethnic group get such a backlash like black women do.  It is accepted and the norm for white women to stay at home and take care of the house.  The idea of a black stay at home mom is she’s lazy, a gold digger and just wants to be taken cared of her whole life, but never she just wants to be there for her family.

Not many women are forced to be domestic goddesses, it is a choice.  Sure, I could work long hours to provide them with every and anything they want and need but what I think MY kids need the most is consistency, stability and love.  I believe and hope that more black women will consider the option of staying at home with their kids even if for the beginning years, 0-3.

Yet in the first three years of life, a baby’s developing brain doubles in size. Every tickle, every warm chuckle, every waggle of a toy is a mini-explosion of brain-power, joy and love that impacts on what happens in later years.


the daily mail

There are countless studies that show kids are better prepared for school, relationships with others and show higher levels of confidence in themselves.  We need this more than ever in the black community.  Black women need the option and the ability to be comfortable with staying at home and having the opportunity to raise our kids.  My kids will always know that one of us will be home when they walk through that door.  It was the same with my mother, she was a stay-at-home mom as well.

At times it feels like it could be a slight hint of envy when I tell people I stay at home.

Mad?

I use my time to cultivate my mind, find inspiration and ideas to make my home and the ones in it feel loved.  I am developing my boys’ mental and physical well being through home activities, I cook, I clean, I love…… Look!…You know what goes on in a household so that times three for me. I continue working on my own businesses as well.  Warren Buffett says a millionaire has at least seven streams of income—–seven.

Marinate.

NOW. I am not blind to the fact that all women cannot stay at home whether it be financial incapabilities or they just aren’t capable of being at home all day with children, trust me I get it. For me, I choose to sacrifice that little bit of time for a better long term result.

But for now…. I choose to enjoy my babies!!

I am blessed to have a partner that believes in my dreams as well.  You see he owns his own business and understands the risks that are taken, the FREE time you put into your dreams and the fruits from it. I take pride in the work I do for my family and no one can do it better than me.  I will continue this until my kids are at an age of obtaining their independence, so like 4….*shrugs

All in all I enjoy every minute of it. Even when it is challenging at times.  I would not trade it for the world.

I don’t mind sharing it with the world either!

Blessings,

Jada

turning your hustle into a business

I am the last person on Earth to tell someone go and get a job.  I say Go and Build a job.  Over the weekend I attended a meet-up for Mompreneurs or aspiring entrepreneurs on marketing yourself and not being afraid of publicity. It was dynamic to say the least! Connecting and networking with some brilliant minded individuals that just need an extra push.

I’ve met so many wonderful, encouraging and inspiring women along this journey — it’s priceless.  We all want the same things regardless of color, to contribute to the legacy of our namesake and build for our family.  And hopefully,  empower others to go for it too.

So now what do you do?

Make money moooooooves… I love Cardi B!

I have been doing odd administrative jobs here and there for local businesses, family and friends. It never dawned on me to make that my official business until this year. I’ve heard from many entrepreneurs the best time to start a business is when you’re unemployed or fed up with what you’re doing. You have more time to invest into your venture. Broke but time to build your brand. I began writing for this blog to document my journey into motherhood but see it has turned into so much more. I’ve learned so much from strangers and advocates of black motherhood and parenting.

You have to have more than one stream of income, at least seven according to Warren Buffet, to achieve success, i.e. become rich. Not seven pop up shops but diversifying and dealing investments, mutual funds, acquiring property, and so on..

I am a creative and a true creative can dabble in just about most things artistically.  So I found myself thinking of businesses that I could brand later on.  I came up with four.  Crazy right? All with very little start up costs.

Let’s see there’s my blog, Love, Cotton + Curls…..(holla at me), there’s my virtual assistant services called CreateGo Studio where we assist homes, new Moms, Mompreneurs and small businesses with personal concierge service, adimistrative and operational support, then there’s my conscious t-shirt line for kids and finally to tickle my social entrepreneurialism there is She Laughs, my baby, a soulcial gathering of African American girls ages 5-14 celebrating pioneering women through arts + crafts, a different kind of girl talk!  Date to be announced so go follow please.

You know I don’t want to come across as the get rich quick lady.  But at the end of the day I’m rich, what’s wrong with that lol.   I used to let self doubt and other people’s opinions shape how I approach these ventures.  But why hide your talent?! Don’t keep it a secret, there is someone out there that needs your business.

I now know my capabilities and responsibilities to not only my family but my surrounding community.  That’s the key to life I believe…we’re here to help someone else.  My goal is to show that I will keep trying until I get it right.  I want my boys to see that anything is possible.  Especially with the internet at your hands, for now…..unless Congress blocks the net neutrality bill, ooops did I say that….

Anyway, with God and YouTube…. chile anything is possible.  I want them to know they don’t have to depend on anyone to give you anything.

Clark Atlanta University has a mantra of “Find a way, or make one!” I keep that mind, often!!

No excuses!

Can’t get any simpler than that, right?

So what’s holding you back, fear?  Afraid you might actually be pretty good at it?  Don’t listen to the naysayers or yourself for that matter. We have to live, speak and breathe positivity. A lot of times people don’t believe in your dream because you don’t. Don’t get me wrong there is nothing wrong with finding a career from 9-5 with benefits and steady income, the life right.

This post is for the dreamer, the risk taker, the fed up….yeah you!

You’d be surprised to find that everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.  I’m still learning this.  and each time I conquer fear it was the best decision ever time and time again.  If you fail, so what– keep trying, keep fighting and keep pushing and you my friend will have your own definition of a success in no time.

Find what you’re good at DO THAT!

And legalize it.

  1. Find a name for your business and visit your State Secretary website to make sure it is not taken.  Go ahead and use the name for emails and websites to secure no one else can use your name or domain.  If you live in the state of Georgia click here.

2. Work on creating your logo if you have not done so.  

3. Depending on the type of business and state secure a business license with your state.  

And brand it.

4.   Pick colors that you will use in your logo, assuming you have one, business cards and websites to create a consistent theme of your business.  People get used to seeing creative and captivating colors associated with your brand.

And market it.

5.  Scared money don’t make no money.  This is so true.  Do not be afraid to tell everyone about your business.  Market, market, market the hell out of it.  Set up social media accounts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn to market your business.  This is the quickest and cheapest type of advertisement and marketing.

 

I love seeing other women connect and win. This is why I began my VA business– to help elevate and create space for other women to thrive and be.

Work hard for it and in due time….

Mo money, mo problems?

Do you have a side hustle you’ve always wanted to turn into a business?  What’s keeping you from that dream?

xo,

Jada