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,

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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

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

my go to winter quickies for meals

It’s winter and I’m actually excited about it because the holidays and my birthday is approaching.

I love cooking but I love one pot meals.

I have two toddlers that have bottomless pits so I have to be careful and creative with their selections.

Soup is the best way to get the boys to eat their veggies without kind of realizing it. I don’t generally have a problem with them eating veggies they chose to eat it last of course.

I finally got my egg drop soup down!!

Super simple recipe!

Chicken broth, green onion, mushroom soup base (my preference) and three eggs slightly beaten.

Bring to a boil all your ingredients but the eggs. Once water comes to a boil simmer did wh and then add eggs. Stir while pouring eggs in. If you want larger eggs in your soup then don’t stir often the opposite for smaller eggs.

I always have fresh veggies left over after cooking meals and it usually goes bad or tossed. I blend some items but I have started to make veggie soup out of all the veggies left over.

This week we had lima beans, red lentils, green beans, corn, tomatoes, okra and potatoes.

I’ve started keeping a pot of beans or soup on the stove lately. For me, it’s cheap, easy and quick to make. I usually prepare it while I’m making breakfast and simmer for an hour to an and a half.

Beans and cornbread were a staple in my house growing up. I vowed to never eat them again…… that is until you had kids so now he boys get beans and cornbread in the regular. I tried a Mexican cornbread…Y’ALL!!! I’ll have to post that later.

I add a ton of veggies and I use a vegetarian soup base that I purchased from an Asian market.

Another way I clean my fridge of left over food is assortment trays. These are really fun to use and the kids love it. Sometimes you just have half is bunch of grapes, half a pack of crackers , two slices of meat, I could go on. This allows you to taste some of everything. Sometimes, I just get tired of seeing some food and just ready to get rid of it so this is easy way to do it.

So soups, beans, assortment trays are all regulars over here.

What type of quick meals do you keep on the stove or regulars at home?