Wednesday, 30 December 2015

A Recap of My Word of 2015


Digital sketch by my friend Shellon

As we come to the end of 2015 I think of my word for that year WILL. I resigned in myself the resolve to sustain an iron will in the things that I would do. Did I succeed? Well, at the very least not completely. Though, I suspect that may be coloured by my constant desire to do better than I ever do or have done.

I also resolved to do. Get it done. Make it happen. Sure enough the goals I set for the year, all the personal ones too, I bolted into and came out the other side a changed woman.

Take for instance reading my bible more, I completed numerous reading plans this year, most notably SRT Women in the Word study which, honestly changed me. I came to know the women of the bible through it in a very real, non fairytale like way.

My resolves to get to praying more and to keep a monthly prayer journal were all successfully done and did a lot to help me to grow in my Christianity and as a person.

Growing stronger in my Christianity has always been on my bucket list and I'm sure it will continue to be. I can absolutely say that I have made huge strides in this direction this year and I feel fantastic about it.

My 12 book a year reading challenge I far exceeded after attempting it almost every year and always coming up short. I went from two books a year, to eleven books a year and then finally in 2015 over seventeen books in a year!

I know I grew a lot due to that process too. With every book I devoured I learned more about myself, the world I live in, the world I don't live in and the people who live in them both.

Likewise, my project 52 challenge was completed for the first time at long last!! Through it I learned to be more selective in what I take a picture of, how I take a picture of it and what are the things that matter to me really deep down after a month has pasted when I feel like nothing has happened or like I have accomplished nothing. Project 52 helped me to narrow things down in my head and to see that in the grand scheme of things, little can add up to a lot even in pictures.

I guess it would be a flat out lie for me to say picking a word of the year did not work wouldn't it? Given the evidence at hand and all. I already know what my word of 2016 is for where I have failed carrying out full the noun portion of this years word, for oh how I stumbled in keeping motivated, I step boldly into it's fulfilment in 2016.

I'll tell you all about that in another blog post. For catch up on previous posts on my word of 2015 click here for my choosing process and options and for more on my motivations behind the word click here.


What's your word of 2016? Share with me in the comments below, oh I'm dying to know!

Peace. Love. Plan.

Sunday, 27 December 2015

4 Things I Learned from my Faith in 2015



You reflect what you spend time doing.
I spent time in scripture and in prayer like crazy this year and I fed that love for it. The only way to grow in something is to keep on feeding it. The wolf that wins is the one you feed right?

There is an extreme privilege in abiding in service. 
Service is not about being the top dog, it is about achieving a sense of humility that allows you to realise that you are an equally important part of an extraordinary whole. Abiding in service is not a chance to be self prompted or boastful but is an opportunity to feel blessed by the position you hold in life. A position wear you are free, loved and safe. It is an opportunity to share that possibility with others and help them to feel the same. It is a chance to change lives just by being who you are, isn't that a true triumph in such a desperately unfair world?  

I have a passion for ministry, diverse and loving ministry.
As seen in my love for teaching and the many roles I occupy in my life.  I delved a little deeper into service this year. It was a long time coming, I knew it but I hadn't yet realised in what way I could serve most effectively and where. In 2015, as I explored aspects of my spiritual life, how I can use my personality and talents also became clear to me. Now I'm revving to make things happen and I couldn't be more excited to have a hand bettering lives and being a source of God's all encompassing love to my fellow living things.

There is strength in numbers.
This year I sought out community a lot more than I used to and I learned that surrounding myself with like-minded individuals not only strengthened me in times of pain but it also fed my own growth. When I dwelt in a space that I made sacred for myself, simply by declaring it so, I gave my spirit a chance to rest even in the midst of busyness, pain, dissatisfaction, confusion, anger and abandonment.



It's been a wild spiritual journey for me in 2015 and no doubt next year will come with a brand new set of lessons and it's own enforcements of these...either way, it'll be an adventure!


Peace. Love. Believe.

Friday, 25 December 2015

MERRY CHRISTMAS LOVELY!!!


Merry Christmas Lovies!

I swear I spent all of last week cleaning my room and in TWO DAYS everything went south. Still, in the midst of it all the smiles and laughter of my loved ones keeps me rooted in my reason for the season.

Isn't it all about good winning in the end?


Peace. Love Merry Christmas!!!

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Dear Mr. Santa Clause Sir




Salutations and warm nights!

By my estimation I've been rather good this 2015; I didn't let the monster get my goose, I was goal oriented and I read my bible lots. Therefore it is with a spotless heart I am writing you this letter.

Please may I have all the illnesses raging my loved one to disappear, you know the ones. Please may I have my loved ones live long healthy happy lives. Please may I have the strong will to not drop out of school due to sheer frustration. Please may I have a bottle or twenty of my favourite wine, I promise not to drink them all at once.

Also, please keep the wonders of the world standing and unbombed so that I might still see them when I can afford to travel.

p.s. I've also cc this letter to God, not that I don't believe in you are anything but you know...just in case.

Thanks a lot
A very good lady.
 

Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Project 52 - December



01. | I have dreams of a grand little tree someday. This is not that year.

02.| I finally had a chance to make some home visits! This lady has been working hard getting ready for craft fairs and selling her beautiful creations during an artists busiest time of the year. I was able to help.

03.| I love seeing Christmas tress and d├ęcor everywhere guys! So Much!

04.| I HAVEN'T SEEN HER ALL YEAR I DON'T THINK. I CANT WAIT TO SQUISH HER TOMORROW :D

---

It's been a crazy December. It's been a tiring year...I am tired right now as I type this but I have so so so much to be grateful for that I cant help but praise God in the midst of struggle. As I look back though, over this year via my entire project 52 I'm feeling so stirred up!

While it's happening it never feels like it's worth the while. It feels like time is crawling and nothing worth remembering is happening. Turns out, that's a lie, every year, every month every change in the seasons is but another turn of the pottery while, another shaping by the potters hands...

More on the year in my end of year reflection.


Peace. Love. Gratitude.
for my ENTIRE project 52 2015 CLICK HERE!

Monday, 14 December 2015

Adulting Christmas


When I was a child Christmas did not mean much to me. So much has changed since then. It has never meant Santa Clause, gifts under the tree, mistletoe or white Christmases. It meant lounging on a holiday and being little moved by the goings-on

Time has morphed that into something very special in my adult life.

It now means sending Christmas cards, special shopping dates with people I haven't seen all year, culturally appreciation by way of seasonal food, spending time with mumzie and even a special outfit for a special house visit.

I'm even doing some decorating this year, minimal though that might be.

Though I've yet to find the perfect tree having a tree and decorations now mean something I have created in a moment in time. It means living in an extremely potent scene of appreciation for the love I have for life and the people in my life.

It is a tangible reminder that I am well and employed and can now cheer my friends on with things that they love and secrets we have shared through out the year via presents!

I am a Christian and for me, though my denomination does not celebrate (it may shock you to know that many denominations of Christianity do not) I do personally. I am reminded around this time of year even more than usual that I should be thanking God for His gift of salvation every day. I often do but never enough as I'd like to and so during Christmas season, when I hear Christmas carols everywhere and see the nativity scene all over town my heart squeezes a little tightly a little more often in gratitude.

Christmas as an adult is very different to Christmas as a child.

Time is no longer spent wishing after the gifts on television but rejoicing in the gift giving process and being extremely thankful that I am of the economical means to give gifts, small as they might be. It means treasuring the parts of my culture that are threatened by extinction and holding them close to my chest and my memory. It means understanding the meaning behind symbolism and accepting that I support which one I choose by choice.

It means an expression of self, my money, my choices, my beliefs my culture. My friends, their gift of love, joy, laughter and attention. It also means my saviour. Though everything always means my savour in my heart.


 What is Christmas like for you as an adult?


Peace. Love. Celebrate the good.


Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Musing :: Mind : When You Have A Long Transition


Lately I've been having some inconsistencies of emotion; basically I don't know how I feel about it.  I've been devouring good literature and letting it remind me of a part of myself I have long neglected; the unique author perspective that is not the usual or expected norm of today.

Lately, I've been stroking that part of my soul that is not like everyone elses and letting myself be reminded that every good part of this whole needs to be nurtured to thrive. I cannot just starve the bad wolf, I must feed the good wolf. A wolf is savage and territorial and must be fed or it may very well bring havoc in search of food...

Lately I have been putting on profession over creativity and feeling very stuffy in my skin. It is heavy this business of the day to day.

Lately I have been struggling to hold on to my perception of beauty in everyday. Reminding myself that existing in a state of transition is not only depressing or frustrating but reassuring because it means that if I am existing between two points there are two points. Transition means I came from some where and I am going somewhere.

Transition means that even if the corridor is dark and the light is dim....the light exists, Thank God.

Peace. Love. Light at the end of your tunnel.

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

My Christmas Wishlist 2015

From top left to right: ban.do notebook // She reads truth letters from Paul print // She is clothing leather snapback // She is clothing tote // blue purse // she reads truth saved by grace print // ban.do scarf // ban.do pencil pouch // ban.do passport holder.

I've also got Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre and Sense and Sensibility in the Penguin Clothbound Classics Hardcover Edition on my list though not pictured here. Maybe I'll get them for my self on my birthday I don't know.

Also on my list is another pretty notebook and a nice notepad that matches it from Erin Condren.

I'm playing with those ideas...it's very difficult for me to buy myself things to be honest. We shall see how it goes!

What pretty presents are you eyeing this Christmas season?


Peace. Love. Cheer.


Saturday, 28 November 2015

Project 52 - NOVEMBER






// A sky full of one of my favourite clouds on an early morning.

// The national museum old glass collection, so beautiful! Yes?

// My attempt at an ornament bowl. I think it came out aright actually not great but good.

// Pizza Hut has opened on my island and its walls are filled with beautiful murals. This one is so beautiful, appreciating a good moment is truly an art I keep having to relearn.


Okay, so my blogging schedule has suffered I wont lie but what school is doing to me now I cannot put into words....soon I will be free...I hope.

Peace. Love. Keep the faith.

Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Day In The Life 2015

I've been wanting to do another day in the life post for some time now. The last time I did it was back in September of the 2014 for the blogtember challenge. There happened to be a similar challenge going on via insta so I figured why not give it a whirl?

7:36 - I'm already in the city and on my way to work. Most businesses are closed and we have a cruise ship in today.

9:56 - The rain hasn't stopped much since yesterday. I forgot my umbrella. Luckily there was one in the car and even more lucky is the fact that it matches my work bag!

12:20 - It's lunch time and I'm working through it today but I took a break to set up the picture for a blog post so that when I get home it only means I have to upload it. This way I have part of my blogging process out of the way.

3:40 - I left work, most of the day was spent doing paper work so not much to show on camera. I do have an exhibit to go see today so that should be a fun detour. Everything is so green and lush, the rain has been good for our lands. Yes this is the front yard of the office.  Hashtag blessed?

4:03 - I stopped into say hi to my artist friend at his studio. Always weird things to be seen there haha

4:30 - I went on over to the National Museum where the exhibition is being held, met some friends who were also going and chat for a bit before the doors opened in the little 'court yard' of sorts. One can see the street from there.

5:30 - It was a long wait but the rain and distance mean it's stick around or abandon thoughts of seeing this exhibit on opening day. The artist is a friend so I decided to stay.

6:00 - Opening! Sign the guest book!

6:03 The artist doing her thing!

6:05 - Author of Force Ripe!

6:24 - Picture with the artist and friend. Isn't she a lovely lass?! Now off I dash!

6:26 - I have a class so I'm dashing. Not before one of these tiny burgers though!

6:26 - Just noticed the Museum's vintage bottle collection!

6:33 - My ride has not arrived and I really wanted to hear her speech...I'm going back in!

6:37 - Oh hey there friend and photographer Haron!

6:40 - Ride arrived and home we sped.

7:18 - Arrived home, changed, dashed to computer. Class is cancelled. I was exhausted and frustrated by then so I just caught up on an episode of something, read for fifteen minutes and went to bed as I was feeling pretty bleh.

--

Hope you enjoyed this swift glimpse into one of my days. Rained out but still touched by an artists brush. I am grateful for thus. Thanks to my friends for suffering through my selfies!


Peace. Love. Kept Appointments.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Project 52 | OCTOBER


01. | A Christmas tree went up at the supermarket ladies and gentlemen and I was filled with glee!

02. | I keep finding myself in libraries surrounded by literature books. No, seriously. I think it's a sign..

03. | Painted my nails pink for Breast Cancer Awareness month as always because yay boobies, keep em safe and keep em healthy!

04. | A Halloween jack-o-lantern made out of a Caribbean pumpkin? Yes please you brave, strong soul!


These past few months are slipping past me in a blur guys, truly. I don't know what I've been doing with myself besides school and reading. Story of my life I suppose...

Hope November is treating you even better than October did!

Peace. Love. Relevance.
For more of my 2015 project 52 click here.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

3 Ways to Piss Off a Blogger | My Terms of Service.



Don't forget to give credit for our hard work


Let me clear things up if there is any confusion now, I am a writer.  I am a writer who engages in the form of writing known as blogging. For a blogger, work is different. Creating content, conceptualising a photo before you take it, choosing good lighting and then if you're a blogger who watermarks, taking the time to do so. Lets not forget editing and putting all of these parts together. This takes time, effort and passion. It doesn't matter how small the following or how big the reach. We take pride in what we do just like anyone would. Respect that by crediting our work always.

Do not assume we will work for free.


I use the word free loosely, anyone in any equation they enter deserves to be compensated whether that be monetarily or through credit or mention. If you are a sponsor, an affiliate or someone who stands to gain from working with me, do not expect me to give of myself whole heartedly with nothing to gain from it. Whether that is a mention, a credit or monitory payment for my time effort and hard work. Consider the accumulative value of what you are asking and then treat me, the writer, with the respect I deserve. Treat me as someone willing to work with you to make your dream happen as part of my own dream.


Don't ask or expect us to not be honest.


Anyone who takes us seriously, also known as the people you are trying to reach from working with us, trusts us for our honesty and accountability. I for one will never promote a product or service I do not believe in. Therefore, do not approach me asking that I review a product or service you do not allow me to try for myself. I will not write about something as if I have experienced it when I have not That is to say that I will a lie or, more accurately, I will not great for you a work of fiction without saying that it is. As writer I make a pronounced habit of stating the difference between the two when I engage in either. Expect that I will continue to do so. Honesty between my audience and I is priceless and worth protecting.


That said I would LOVE to work with you as it has to do with  writing reviews and trying samples as long as you are okay with acknowledging my work and my claim to honesty. You can find an example of advertorial work I have done in the past here.



What do you do when others taking your work as nothing but play?

Peace. Love. Transparency.




Saturday, 31 October 2015

DIY Halloween Costume : Black Cat


I was recently told that black cats have a hard time on Halloween, We don't celebrate it here. We have a similar version more religiously based very soon after. It concerned me, hearing of cats being treated badly simply because they happen to be the colour that they are, as though that has anything to do with anything.


Plus, there's nothing I love like a VERY simple Halloween outfit, I think it's so cheeky making yourself into a character by doing nothing. Once I attempted it by dressing as a fifties gal. This time I thought I'd do a black cat. All it took was a black choker necklace, some MAC Cyber lipstick and a cheap kitty ear bando I once bought off of ebay for a friend only to find out she wouldn't like it before I gave it to her, oops! It came in handy though.

Of oucorse were things more in my favour I know I'd go real hard on the costuming. Until that day, I will enjoy the simpler get ups :)

Anyway, my point is, be smart and not cruel to black cats this season will you?  Let a kitty live.


Peace. Love. Live and let live.

Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Book Launch : Force Ripe



I'm sure you remember my review of this book. No? Pretend.  This past weekend it was officially launched on the island that is it's setting and I was there to witness it.

I wont drag on much about it. I will say this: I was glad to be there, the speeches and thank yous from all involved were so very moving and I'm really glad it was launched at this phenomenal location where I was able to explore one of the most amazing houses that still stands rich with colonial design.

Also, check out them cupcakes though right? Yummy. Can I have those when my book launches?


Have you ever been to a book launch?


Peace. Love. Local Literature.





Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Thriftbooks : A Review


(pretty packing yes?)
 
Just coming off my post about seven good reasons to still buy hard copy books I wanted to do a bit of a mini review of this website thriftbooks. Just from the very name I thought it a wonderful idea. This is a website that deals with the resale of books from one party to a next.

I know that for many people books are not held as something to hoard but something to read and pretty much forget about or donate to a next party. Well, this website sweetens the deal by allowing you to make some cash off the lot of it!

I love this idea because it makes my little environmentalist heart sing a happy song. I know that this world is not all that it used to be and providing a way for many people to find enjoyment out of one book instead of throwing it in the trash or letting it be eaten away in the corner by dust or bugs well, a great initiative it is if you ask the likes of me.

I almost thought it too good to be true. After all, how could you be sure that you would get good, cared after books and not sloppy seconds someone was just looking to free themself and their bookshelf of having to see? Let us be honest, in this day of the world wide web you take such a chance when ever your order things we are kind of just choosing to close our eyes to it aren't we?

Never the less I decided to try out the service, I wanted to populate my personal library with some of my favourites, these books were cheap, second hand and the website ships world wide so what did I have to lose?

As it always does with my mailing system it took quite some time to get here but it did and look at those beauties! I do not regret it in the least! These books were well kept by their previous owners and well worth the reduced price. The site gives you the option of which book you would like to purchase according to the state it is in which tends to vary from as good as new or slightly torn or nicked.


I chose almost new for my purchases and they are both hard cover because these I want to last a very long time. Granted, one of them looks like it was a gift and has a little note written on the inside something along the likes of 'i hope it brings you as much joy as it brought me' or that might actually be a note from the previous owner to me, which is cute but only cute because I think it's written in pencil haha. The other I think the book's jacket is slightly scuffed but I'm okay with that being the case. I mean have you seen how pretty the cover of my The Alchemist is?! Yes please!


All in all, I love thriftbooks.com and I would say give it a try for discounted books in good shape. Another feature I love is that you get paid more the better the condition of the book you're selling, great encouragement for keeping your books well. Also, I love that I can make a wish-list and be notified when someone adds a book I want to the website and snatch it up quick. Kind of slept on that because I could have owned Harper Lee's book when it was being sold for cheaper but hey, a girl needs to also support local businesses right?


Do you like buying second hand books?


Peace. Love. Read.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Why Buy Books Though?


I was contemplating this lately as I considered filling my library with my favourites books. The ones that have changed my life. The truth is this home I live in is likely not my last stop, heck it's barely my first. The bookshelves in this home belong to me because I bought in my early years of working the things that reflected the destiny I wanted.

Even with this being so I found myself questioning even in the midst of my joy, as I bought some of my favourites...what sense does this make? It was on my mind so much I had a talk with someone about it and this person helped me to conceptualise what I suppose I already knew but can easily forget in this ever digital age.

At the end of our conversation, this much was clear, seven reasons to still buy books in hard copy:

1. To Contribute to your Legacy - 

To pass on a representation of the things that are important to you and have impacted your life to the people who are most important in your life. What a joy it is to pick up and old favourite and share with someone then watch the light of love come to life in their eyes as the love you found in those pages births in them . The people we love love seeing those things and for me it will be an unspeakable joy someday to pick up Green Eggs and Ham or The Nutmeg Princess and read them to my own loves.

2. Character Repute - 

There is a saying that you can judge a person by the books on their shelf and surely we can secretly admit (just between us) that if you walk up to someone's shelf and find a slew of only say... harlequin and heat novels for example, you will begin to judge their character in a way that is unspoken. You will judge that person very differently than you do the person whose shelf is filled with self help books or psychology textbooks. I do not enforce such judgement for Lord knows my shelf could be inhabited by anything at any time given the research I'm doing at that time for a novel or another but alas it happens and I will readily admit that I have walked up to many a bookshelf and when the books on their tell of a professional who invests on his craft a part of my is impressed. Passion informs purpose after all.

3. Referencing - 

Speaking of purpose, it is handy to have a repertoire of books on hand from whence to tap when indulging in your discipline. Whatever your passion their comes a time when you want to dip into a source that is certified easily and without sifting through search engine result after search engine result. Books are away of ensuring your citations are reliable with the flick of a page. Who can't appreciate such a thing?

4. Encouragement of Passion -

Honestly there is something about being surrounded by good literature that makes me want to write more. Its inspires a guilt I am grateful for, a guilt that says get of your butt and let your reality reflect your dreams.

5. Aesthetics - 

I cant think of a better prop than books. I take pictures like crazy when I'm next to them and they would be my ideal youtube video backdrop because they put a pep in my step, I feel learned and inspired and all kinds of good feels when I'm around them and I hope that they can inspire that amongst others I encounter because really they are a treasure chest of knowledge just waiting to be had.

6. Identity -

Represent for who you are right? If these books hold within them the messages that have shaped you, if they scream your values and what your perceive the answer to life as we know it? Rep you baby. On every shelf in the house I say.

 7. Exploration -

What ever your discipline, it remains important to push the envelope. Having books within reach that encourage an unfamiliar perspective is a wonderful way to do that. There is something about a bookshelf that causes people to drift in it's direction. When left alone with one, they either seek old friends in the world of the written word or find new ones. It's astounding the power of a book on hand.

~

Hey and maybe books will go out of style someday but even writing that sentence the only thing that comes to mind is a quote from the Doctor Who Episode where I met my favourite character.

"Books! People never really stop loving books. 51st century. By now you've got hollovids, direct-to-brain download, fiction mist but you need the smell! The smell of books, Donna- Deep breath!' ~Doctor Who, Silence in the Library.

Why do you still buy books in this day and age?

Peace. Love. Beautiful Libraries. 

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

10 Struggles of Being an English Major



 // Linguistics is sexy, which makes you a little more odd than average as you swoon over the way something is said rather than what is said, making your friends roll their eyes at your strange fascination of how the tongue can bend in ways that hold your interest for reasons completely unrelated to sexuality.

// Text book theorists are usually hilarious, full of wit, sarcasm and irony as they present their theories and are often poets or novelists themselves which makes you feel rather proud because as far as you're concerned your teacher is a literary superstar and you get to be thought by them and read their knowledge even though students of other disciplines just don't get how awesome they are or why you would read your textbooks for fun if you know, you were ever allowed time to breathe.

// Being OCD about either grammar, linguistics, spelling or all of the above. Those disciplines take over your brain until you start hearing everything in punctuation marks and phonemes.

 // Mr. Darcy is basically my fictional equivalent of Trey Songz. In fact everyone has one, a fictional equivalent that is.Mr. Knightley comes in a close second.

// Okay, I had to get over marking on my books it's true and how about them references? Underline? Italicize? SPRINKLE IT IN FAIRY DUST?!  Plus yeah, a literature get the jokes on 97% of this list.

// You dream of getting rich so you can buy two copies of books, one for reading and letting everybody touch and the other for putting on a shelf within view and admiring for its beauty so for now when people touch your books a little part of you screams murder on the inside.

// Beautiful books make you tingle in all kinds of places. I mean has any body seen these?! I am loosing myself hungering for the Pride and Prejudice copy of these bad boys. I seriously almost cried, their beauty near brought me to tears.

// When someone says 'I haven't read the book but I've seen the movie!'with pride, you have to exercise restraint of judgement. It's not on purse that you're judging them it's just your training rebelling.

// There just isn't enough time in life to spend reading Literature before you grow old and die as you have to you know, get out there and live and keep your commitments and all that and this makes you very sad.

// Libraries speak a special language to your soul so they feel like a sacred home and you get well miffed when people do not appreciate the life of its own such a place has.


 There are more but I thinking I'll stop here. Who's your literary Trey Songz?


Peace. Love. Language.

Friday, 2 October 2015

Book Review :: Force Ripe




Cindy McKenzie’s 'Force Ripe' is a charming tale of toiled experiences, faced by an Afro-Indo- Caribbean, under aged, girl in the time of political unrest that was the Grenadian revolutionary era. The author uses stream of consciousness, the Grenadian Creole, sensory imagery and symbolism to successfully convey the fragile and frightened perspective of a young girl in the midst of war time. During these years of boldness and bloodshed, history is in the making and everything is as fresh and new as leaves during a tropical rainy season and as ripe with possibility as a good fruit crop.

The characters palpably display a search for identity faced by many Caribbean people with their engaging sense of reasoning and their motivated moves to action, spurred by a will to survive and a time of enabling disregard for the opinion of the wider world. An opinion, aggressively echoed through decades in chants of ‘Let them come, we will bury them in the sea!’ and ‘It takes a revolution to make a solution!’ Words that are still heavy with longing and regrets for many Grenadians today.

However, this time of search for identity during which the book is set is not without its winding roads. Under the stress of seeking a solution that fits every class, the characters of ‘Force Ripe’ face challenges as varying as mass migration and the ripping apart of families in search of financial stability, to new, radical spiritual commitments in the hunt for acceptance and ownership of self apart from the whole.

The author builds on themes of isolation, emotional turbulence, the extended family structure, abuse and spirituality through the symbolisms of visions, outer body experiences and the use of sensory imagery and local idioms. At one of her darkest hours, covered in shame and desperate for healing the main character describes her situation as ‘…feeling like a titerree in a river full of crayfish.’  (Force Ripe 2015) and the reader cannot help but get a sense of the strain of a child, propelled into a very adult situation, who is ever seeking to heal the sores of her past quietly and without the much needed guidance of a loved one.

When tackling resolution the author approaches it with the same level of insecurity present in the days post revolutionary Grenada. The future is unsure but certain, dauntingly but excitingly unwritten like the blank pages of a child's journal. ‘Force Ripe’ proves itself a brazen tale of strife and survive of both a girl and of a nation.


----

All in all it was an interesting book. I admit it was a bit challenging when I first began because it is written in my native Creole and even though it is a language I often speak their is no official written version and my brain is not used to seeing it in print or actively acknowledging it in inner dialogue. 

When I became invested in the characters I warmed up to the tale more quickly. The setting is familiar and in fact much of the story takes place on my side of the islands. Familiar too are many of the scenarios, patois sayings and customs of the children and the adults in their lives..

It is always interesting to me to read alternative perspective on the Grenada revolution and though it was much cameoed in this novel, I was able to see things through the perspective of a young school girl. A point of view I think, is beyond valuable in the face of the fact that much of that time is unwritten or remains hidden even now...

Lee's story reminded me of the resilience of my people even in the face of socio economic danger, coupled with individual instability. It was an engaging and unique experience reading her story.

If I had to rate it I would give it 4 stars. Not because the book is bad but because of personal bias. The literature I most enjoy is brimming with literary flavour ( but I'm sure you know that, Pride and Prejudice, Gone With the Wind and Sense and Sensibility are my guilty pleasures after all) this story's style is much more auto biographical and without comparison I appreciate it for what it is: a life lived bursting with determination for freedom and fruitfulness backdropped by Caribbean landscape. I applaud the author for being brave enough to write this and braking the silence on such a heinous issue.

If you're a non national and think you're up the task of reading a novel in a language much different from your own or a Grenadian by birth or boat and would love to be submersed in the goings on of the Grenadian people, you can check out Force Ripe available for download and purchase via amazon Sunday October 4th 2015!

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Project 52 - SEPTEMBER



01. | I spent about three days in a meditative reflective state before I head of to work in the first week of my return to work this term. Just me and my God, appreciating what He's done in me, with me and for me. This includes this beautiful earth! I felt so lucky!! I also was reminded of this blessing by an old tag I was saving in my planner for future scrapbooking.

02.| Back to work the next week, early mornings of sitting in solitude at the school house trying to do my uni assignments as I wait for the moment I will be called miss,

03.| Nothing like a full arsenal of pens to make you feel ready for the new term!

04.| At the end of the week I went off to my usual writers meeting and though my mood began to slow I was also able to slow down in the midst of the city and notice that even on this island the city is beautiful too. Also, almost made it a month with my nails done while working...almost.Bah.


How did September treat you?

Peace. Love. Beautiful Commitments.

For more of my project 52 2015 click here!

Saturday, 26 September 2015

2015 Completed Reading


I finally killed my reading list for 2015. I was a little worried as I did come close the last two years but I noticed that in the last semester of the calendar year my reading always slows down. Likely, I speculate, as it's the first semester of the school year as a teacher and first term of the school year as a student, both things I am doing that cause my time to not be my own and throw me in the middle of various commitments to deadlines.

So this year, I was more strategic and just kept reading earlier in the year and over the summer, letting myself indulge in the temptation to never slow down.

I must admit that I started Emma in December of 2014 back when I read a tone of other classics like Little Women, Sense and Sensibility and my dear sweet Pride and Prejudice but I didn't finish it because I was not liking it at all. Therefore, with about six chapters to go I stopped. I was better able to get my head in the game this year though and read it and came to have a real appreciation for the literature. I still dislike the character though that is sure.

I've already begun compiling my list for 2016 believe it or not and I'm fighting with myself not to start it. Usually, I would just charge ahead because December break from uni is nice and long enough for a good rest but this year, I'm working hard on a plan I have for that month...say a prayer for me guys! I really want it to work out...

Either way, I did read another book not on this list but it was a #SheReadsTruth bible plan so I guess goodreads wont count it though I do. I am also reading another book now too but it's not yet published....so exciting!

So that's what's up with Liz the reader in 2015! Feel free to follow me on goodreads if you want to keep up a little more with my reading habits.


How is your reading list going for this year, a disappointment or full of surprises?


Peace. Love. Achievement.
Linking up with Blogtember 2015!

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Thank God It's Thursday TELEVISION!


It's premier week y'all!!! I'm SO happy! haha the episode here and there keeps me from calling my teachers unnecessary names in the dark of the night when everyone is asleep and I'm up writing essay after essay and reading note after note... WOO I done been delivert!


Oh I forgot Empire in the colleague, how?!



What's everybody watching? Indulge my silliness haha

Peace. Love. Deliverance from the Grind!

Saturday, 19 September 2015

What's In My BEACH Bag!



I'll tell you what, I love the beach but I also love efficency. So when I heard a friend of mine talk about the fact that she always keeps beach things in a bag in her car I decided to do the same. Who says I need a car to work this to my advantage?

So what's in my ready to grab and go any time beach bag?
  • Sunblock.
  • A Towel
  • Shorts.
  • A Loose fitted beach easy drying shirt ( much like those sheer things)
  • Bathing Suit
  • A beach wrap
  • A hair wrap/shower cap.
  • Change
Things I need to add:
  • A hat
  • Sunnies/shades
  • Flip flops
  •  Lipstick (a girls gotta reapply yo)

It was great packing this bag and it feels great any time someone says to me 'I'm going to the beach you coming?' I can not only say yes but can grab my pre-packed bag and just slip in my daily necessities (the what I call what's in my purse) we'll get into what's in my actual purse (wallet) some other time or maybe never cause ick.

I honestly wanted to show you but alas the photos just wouldn't cooperate (seriously I've been trying to post this up since Tuesday) hope you enjoyed reading this list anyway though!

Do you have any kind of grab and go bag and if not, what event would you consider making on for?


Peace. Love. Be Prepared.

Thursday, 10 September 2015

50 Things on my Bucket List


I started writing a bucket list when I was 20 I haven't looked back at it for some time so I thought this would be a good opportunity to have a look back at the things I used to want, clean it up and evaluate. So this should be a fun read for us both. Prepare yourself, this is going to be long.


Travel 
  • Visit England
  • Visit South Korea
  • Visit/shop in Italy
  • Visit Paris
  • Visit/shop in Japan
  • Tour the Caribbean islands
  • Take a cruise with my mom (or just take one on a whole)
Education & Professional Development

  • Obtain my bachelors in Literature and English with education
  • Become an English literature and creative writing teacher
  • Teach English for a term in Korea
  • Take part in a giant, world recognized spoken word poetry event like DefJam Poetry
Security
  • Own a house
Writing
  • Publish my novels 
  • Publish a compilation of my poetry
  • Script a Movie
  • Make a movie scripted by myself
  • Write a song
  • Be in a movie
Hobbies
  • Move to a first world country for a while
  • Be on the Oprah show either as a guest or part of the audience I'm not too pickie lol
  • See a score of Broadway plays!
  • See Rent the play performed on Broadway
  • Avenue Q the play performed on Broadway
  • Cats (which they're not doing any more...) performed on Broadway
  • Chicago(which they're not doing anymore I know) performed on Broadway
  • Learn to Tango like a professional
  • Own a high end DSLR camera
  • Take a photography course
  • Learn the native folk dances of my culture.
  • See P!NK in Concert
  • See Linkin Park in concert
  • See Nickleback in concert
Religion
  • Be settled and feel safe in my Christianity (done but ever on going isn't it?) 
  • Go on a mission trip with Lets Start Talking
Other
  • Have a bedroom I'm satisfied with
  • Replace my school ring
  • Go to a big classy party dressed in a tuxedo 
  • Dye my hair pink
  • Learn to play the piano 
  • Learn to swim
  • Live in scarves, big hats and vintage dresses for at least a year.
  • Attend NOAHCon
Fitness: 
  • Get fit/toned/healthy
  • Do yoga
  • Learn Tai Chi
Done:

  •  Own a fluffy little short dog (only for a year but i did happen, R.I.P Missi)
  • Find friends that will last a lifetime
  • Complete my Disney music collection
  • Visit Sandy Island. 
  • Learn to skip rope 
  • Take pictures dressed up in a changing room of a store 12.04.11 and recently in August 2015
  • See the turtles come up to nest
Removed
  • Obtain my masters in Psychology 
  • Come a licensed counselling/clinical or school psychologist
  • Own a Parrot
  • Learn to speak Spanish
  • Learn to speak Japanese
  • Learn to knit and or crochet
  • Become an actress for a while

I'm just a tiny bit embarrassed at just how long this list is but I'm honestly impressed when I look back at how much I've changed, the things I have finished and the things I've set into motion and am continuing to do. I haven't pin pointed exactly which ones are actually happening right now because honestly it's most if not all of them. So few of them I intend to do not as a one off.

So many of them have so many steps attached to them and honestly? Looking at this long list I am encouraged because obviously, from the experiences I have had in my life working towards all of these goals, it becomes obvious that it's really not so much about the destination as the journey. What a journey it has been! Also do you see that rejects list?! Oh how we change!


What are some of the things you want to do before you die??

Peace. Love. Wildly Exciting Rides.
Linking up with blogtember 2015


Tuesday, 8 September 2015

15 Things that make for the Perfect Cozy Fall Day


On an ideal day in Fall/Autumn/The Rainy Season I would wake up to a picture of dark grey clouds heavy in a gloomy moody sky. They would give birth to rain, a little thunder and maybe even a little lightening. It would be cold, so cold, cold like a one sided love; painful but making you desperate for a tight embrace. I would sink deeper into the arms of my own warm lining and smile my way back to a late morning sleep.

I would wake up before it was light and hop silently on checkerboard tile down the white hallway into the bathroom for refreshing. Pyjamas would rule the day just as they had the night, long pyjamas, the kind we don't get to wear often enough because it's just too hot most days.

Home and warm again I would spend time in devotional worship, write some, edit some, dance some snuggling with a pup some.

I would spend the mid day eating calaloo soup only grandmother has been able to master or pumpkin soup only mother has been able to master. I would brave the muddy puddles and the crystal clear with equal care and a rain water filled holes and make my way to the roadside to catch a bus to the ocean.

Umbrellas of all shapes, sizes and colours would litter the streets and light frost would cover vehicle windows, tempting me to regress into drawing hearts or words on them and peeking through those spaces to see the clearer picture on the other side. I would give in that day and watch the flash of greenery amidst a the various shades of grey backdrop slide past me on my trip.

The ocean would be that perfect chill for getting in and staying in longer than on most days, its greens and blues would pop against the contrast of the sky.

There would be so much laughing.

Upon returning home there would be wine and laughter and roasted corn with my mother, aunt and grandmother in the cool of the setting sun. I would remain in slack jeans because there is something about wearing them at home that is so comfortable! Maybe add a dash of my favourite long socks to complete the satisfaction of a wardrobe appropriate to the feel of the day; covered, warm, close...

To end it off I would brew cocoa tea so hot that even I can see the steam rising from it and spend the rest of the day, from dusk till late into the night on the front porch sipping tea and reading fine literature in the blanket of quiet only such a time can share.

I would fall asleep to loud rain again that night.

Things to love about Fall

Rainy days
Cloudy skies
warm sheets
Clare puddles
Deserted streets
Bright umbrellas
Warm soup
Cool ocean baths
Laughter
Matriarchy
Wine
Warmth
Knee high socks
Hot cocoa tea 
Fine literature


I could have wrote about 'the perfect day' but if I'm honest that would be full of a lot more travelling and in the words of Scarlett O'hara 'I wont think of that now, I'll think of it later. There are too many other things to think about...'


What does the perfect Fall day look like on your side of the world?


Peace. Lover. Things to love.
This post was written in connection with the second day of the blogtember 2015 link up

Friday, 4 September 2015

The Reading Habits Tag


 I saw this tag over at Vanilla Crush and then again on another blog and I've been trying to resist doing it because I only recently did a tag but then I figured why not?


1. Do you have a certain place at home to read?
In my room, always in my room once there is someone home. If not I might read a bit on the coach. Unless it's an audiobook then all bets are off and I'm at the sink doing dishes, on a bus, dusting down furniture, folding clothes, everything!

2. Bookmark or random piece of paper?
Since I do a lot more e-reading now because of my sight it's digital book marking haha but when I am reading a tangible book I am one of those terrible people who dog ears the page.

3. Can you just stop reading or do you have to stop after a chapter or number of pages?
I can generally stop on any page if I have to just at the end of a paragraph or at the button or top of the page or even the middle really,  somewhere that I can generally remember the place to find it again easily. Ideally though, the end of a chapter is perfect.

4. Do you eat or drink while reading?
Rarely as I was taught not to from an early age, bad for your health, causes weight gain and over eating and the list goes on. Also I can never truly appreciate the food when I do that so if I do I'm literally just shovelling the food into my mouth so I can get back to giving the book my full attention!

5. Do you watch TV or listen to music while reading?
Absolutely not.

6. One book at a time or several at once?
One book please.  I don't like dividing my attention.

7. Reading at home or everywhere?
At home where I can get the lighting right and do all those crazy book reader poses.

8. Reading aloud or silently in your head?
Silently.

9. Do you ever read ahead or skip pages?
Never

10. Do you ever write in books?
If I'm studying it for a class yes. I've started writing in my books for that reason and I'm warming up to it as a literature student but I always feel like such a betrayer doing it.
If you do this tag, link me! I love it and would love to hear about your reading habits, lets be nerdy together <3 

If you like I'm tagging:

Helen of I Will Bloom
Charlotte of Inside Chalotte's Head
Shellon of Don't Play With It
Kiki of In It's Time
Hayley of Charidabelle

because you are all awesome and readers and I want to know how you do it.


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