18 posts categorized "In Review"



Photo+4Photo by Pamela Mougin

You can tell it had been bothering me.  That comment about the "hole."  It was so rude, so condescending.  And until now, I had not had the opportunity to speak on it.  So when I finally could, I did and it was a relief.

The thing is, I couldn't understand that of all people, the judgment would come from her.  You were a mistress and you have children by 3 different fathers.  Let me be very CLEAR so that we can all stay completely focused - this has nothing to do with the children, they are precious and innocents in all this.  This has to do with character.  I do not feel that this character, is in any position to speak about me and definitely not in that way. 

I do not fight on Twitter, making nasty comments about people, then try to hide by not using their handle.  When Marlo has something to say, she will tell you directly.  And sometimes direct talk can sting...



Photo+3Photo by Pamela Mougin


There is something to be said for letting things out in the moment you feel them, and then moving on from it right away.  The Smalls had clearly been holding a lot inside.  Though there were moments when they seemed to stand apart, in their attacks on Nene they  aligned from the start. 

I have to say, I was shocked that anyone would try to use children as a line of attack.  Isn't that bad etiquette to try to embarrass someone's child?  Though Nene read her nicely, still it should never have come to that.  Seems dangerous ground to tread when your own children are still young; who knows what the future might hold for them...

It was a spicy start to the proceedings, it only gets better...


Hunger Games



The wear and tear was starting to show.  Fatigue setting in.  The formula exhausted.  It happens when you are slow to recognize opportunity, not committed to victory for all who play well.  The audience knows it and sometimes they rebel. 

I watched the Hunger Games, did you?  The powers fed the hungry and the hungry continued to want more.  Then Katniss arrived, tentative, distrustful, but honest.  She entered the arena, not with the same packaging.  She came in trailing fire.  A few understood her possibilities right away. 

In the end, she won on her own terms.  Though the terrain was treacherous, her supporters kept her moving along.  And she rewarded them, with theatre and spectacle - drama unforeseen.  But when the powers lost hold of the reins and she created her own ending, a sacrifice was made.  The audience wanted a victor, but they were only allowed one.

Surely the powers must know, that even if the formula works, somewhere along the way it won't, and the smart ones are those who deliver the new, even before its wanted...




Center 25

Crab Leg Fest

I thought Nene's instructions were clear: say what you feel, because she will say what she feels.  How then, did you end up apologizing?  The good thing about being grown: knowing which friendships to keep and which to never get started...

Steve Harvey; the center stone is 25??  Take notes boys, I might even accept 10...




Procession in Blue


There was so much, in addition to a lot of blue.  I immediately realized that everyone's perception of a grand, luxurious event is COMPLETELY different. I prefer a touch of elegance, not a sea of blue.

Style tip by Marlo: Dress to your mood, then let one thing go....

The procession, however, a high note, this is surely the way to enter a room!




Y'all are so nosy!


Some of you were curious to know.  Who is Dave?  I was planning on keeping that a secret, but I suppose I do have to tell.  He's a friend.  More?  How do you know Dave?  We were introduced.  And?  Who introduced you?  Another friend.  But who is the other friend?

Sigh...okay.  What you may not know about me is that I have quite a few friends who like myself, are committed to charitable work.  Often, you will find me at events in support of these causes, to help with fundraising and whatnot.  It was at such an event, that the friend who organized it mentioned to me that she thought Dave and I should meet. 

We met, he was a gentleman and I brought him along as my date to a party.  Dave is a lovely man and I am glad to have met him.  But ladies, in life, as we become more mature, we choose partners who we believe offer a little something extra.  When you find that, you always know it was worth waiting for.  So I'm enjoying myself for now, patiently waiting, for fire...





Via newmillfordctpress

Today I learned a new word, 

schadenfreude \SHOD-n-froy-duh\ , noun: A malicious satisfaction obtained from the misfortunes of others.  I learned that when people around you do not mean you well, you must not give them the tools with which they can trip you up. 

Some time had passed since my mistake.  To be honest, I had hoped that with it all taking place on a different continent, maybe it would not have traveled back home.  There I was, all dressed up and ready to play - I expected the evening only to be fun.  But she had been waiting. To look at it now, she had it all planned out.  She had as fast as she could made sure to tell on me, and like a vulture circling its prey, she had chosen the optimal time to strike - when I least expected it and was defenseless.

I did not want to lie.  I wanted the opportunity to explain and to say sorry.  But I couldn't, because she was there, gloating, so eager to bring my mistake to light.  I felt ambushed, backed into a corner.  Her smiling face was so hateful, so cunning.  What strikes me, looking at it now, is that her friend is not even her concern.  In her enthusiasm to set me up, she actually delighted in the pain that my actions had caused him.  And as I watched her eyes sparkling with the taste of revenge, I chose to take her sense of schadenfreude away a little bit by denying what happened.  I could not, in front of her, so thirsty to embarress me, admit to my mistake.

But I never forgot that I made a mistake, I never forgot my guilt.  I left the party and immediately called Miss Lawrence.  I admitted to my mistake and I apologized for hurting him.  Like a true friend he listened and he was open to receiving my apology.  He forgave me.  For that I love him.  He did not rejoice in seeing me stumble.  He does not take malicious satisfaction in the misfortunes of others.  For that I respect him.



Makeda Reclining


The Queen of Sheba reclining in garden


And thus a trip of a lifetime came to an end.  I traveled to Africa, I sought out wisdom, I brought gifts.  It was the beginning of a journey for me, one with many questions and the hope of finding answers.  I reflected on the richness of this opportunity and of our history, while reclining, like Sheba in the garden.

The Queen of Sheba, who hailed from Ethiopia, and was ruler of Arabia (10BC), was a seeker of truth and wisdom.  In search of it, she would travel to Jerusalem to meet King Solomon so she could test his wisdom and knowledge with questions and riddles.  She would bring frankincense, myrrh, gold and precious jewels.  He would teach her about Yahweh, and she would become a follower, a Christian.  She would have a son and he would become the emperor of Ethiopia.  From her came a long line of Ethiopian Kings.

Who would think I would be here, the place where we ruled and where we were kings, who would think I could have this experience?  And as I reclined, like Sheba in the garden, I wondered: could our future return to the magnificence of our past?







Labels, Hair, Make-up, Joy

MARLO_HAMPTON-3Photo by Pamela Mougin


This past week has given me pause.  This week I was forced to confront darkness and its sometimes catastrophic outcomes.  What is the impact of loneliness, fear, sadness and yearning, and how does what is bottled up inside manifest itself?  I thought about coping, searching for the light anywhere you can find it and what that means for me.

Clothes is where it started, but pretty things of all kinds would soon take over as family, and a connection to them, became more and more fleeting.  Pretty hair would follow clothes, then furniture and eventually a pretty home.  My family, or rather, various members of it, would at different times fall into drug addiction, nieces and nephews would follow into the foster care system, and love, the true kind, the kind I had searched for my whole life, never came.  More and more I needed to fill the emptiness, and cars and trips and expensive food and labels would have to make up for having less. Clothes were my refuge, clothes were what I could have, clothes had to fill the void where a mother and a father, a loving home, and a family should have been.

Even today, on a bad day - and there are still quite many - when I need to fill myself up, when I need to smile and feel what real happiness could be like, I walk into my closet.  That’s when I perk up and I feel grateful, for I do have many blessings and I do have a place to go that is pretty, filled with pretty things that when I put them on, make me feel good.  That’s when I feel everything will be okay.  It is how I cope, and it is how I try to help others cope.  Sometimes feeling pretty can be all you have and if that is so, then that is what I want to give to them.

Clothes are important to me and they lie at the core of who I am.  But I know that there will come a day when I will have the most precious label of all, one I have searched for my whole life, the one I will be most proud of.  One day, I will have a family and I will speak about them glowingly, I will show them off and I will go to them when I want to smile.  I can’t wait to see this design...


Sequins & what sparkles most of all


It was so interesting to see how quickly we could move past the absurd, to the wonderful and truly lovely.  How we could so easily grow apart and stay divided over things like labels, height and safari style.  Then, just as easily we could come together.  And once we did, there was no division, there were no differences.  We all felt the same thing - love and gratitude.

It is hard to describe really.  The children, naturally precious.  They are God's most beautiful designs.  And your heart breaks when they are not given the most basic things all children need.  There is no feeling quite like knowing that you could easily love them, take care of them, nurture them, but then have to leave them behind.  To see their happiness at the very little they receive and not being able to give them even more.  Each of us wanted to grab them all, each of us wished for magic - the ability to change their lives in an instant. 

We couldn't.  What we could do is treasure them and hold on to the look in their beautiful eyes.    And I will treasure sharing that moment with everyone who was along...