Sunday, October 4, 2015

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Eco-Update 4




This is my 4th update on this eco-friendly journey and also 5 years since I started blogging. My goodness time flies! You can check out my previous updates here. Like all journeys there were ups and downs, but I stuck with it and didn't give up. This is truly a lifestyle I plan to stick with long term. 


*BLOGGING

In the process of chronicling my green journey, I was a little lost and needed some tips/advice on how to get the ball rolling. There's this stigma that black people don't do (fill in the blank). However, I know that's not true. So I had a moment and decided to reach out to women who look like me.

My fingers got a workout searching the net, stalking, and harassing. I was in their inbox like….


ME: Hey girl! How you doing? I was wondering if you want to join me on this "clueless" journey showing that we care about the environment, eat healthy, use non-toxic ingredients, and more. 

HER RESPONSE:

Yessss!!!

That's how this feature was born. I've gotten a lot of positive feedback about it and I'm proud of it because representation matters. We ARE out there. We're bringing our own unique experiences and I will continue my mission of doing that.





One of my goals was to collaborate more with natural/organic companies. I didn't have much luck earlier in the year but later on….  I'm proud to say I did more than I expected. With planning, preparation, and a bottle of wine, I was able to exceed my own expectations. I was impressed with the response and decided to turn it into a "Clueless" Company Alert series. I thought only a handful would want to work with me because of this "numbers/popularity" game that is played oh so well on social media.

Even though some companies didn't respond, I didn't take it personal. I simply kept it moving reaching out to the next. Some were nice enough to respond back letting me know that they will keep me in mind in the future. I went in with the mindset that everything is not always going to go my way. I kept the saying when one door closes, another one opens in my head so that I won't get discouraged.

I'm not going to lie blogging is a lot of work, but I do enjoy the experience. I've been reading a lot of articles on blogging and other topics of interest. I even started a reading challenge this year. The challenge was going good, but the truth is I'm more of an online reader. I'm one of those that like quick reads (short articles, newspapers, blogs posts, etc..) but I do have a small collection of books.

The blogosphere has changed tremendously. One minute content is king, the next minute it's about usefulness. I've read so much info and it is overwhelming. Doing every single step is something I knew was going to be a problem. Especially with the analytical stuff my IQ was like...

Listen... Find another hobby. Please don't do this to us.

*HEALTHY EATING

I try not to buy any processed foods or eat at fast food restaurants. It's been years since I walked into most of them, and I plan on keeping it that way. Those artery cloggers though. As much as I enjoy eating healthy, I think it's a crime not to indulge. I do have my cheat days and I do it in moderation.

It's funny because I'm not a vegetarian, but I've been interrogated questioned about it. So when I'm eating meat or indulging it's like…

She's one of us!

I guess it's all those meatless dishes I've been cooking. Some I enjoy and continue to make often, some I don't. Even though I've limited my meat consumption, I don't see myself being a full-time vegetarian or vegan anytime soon. Trying those dishes has increased my interest though.

When cooking at home I know what is in my food. I also know that it will have less fat, less this, and less that. It wasn't always fun in the beginning. Once I stopped focusing on calories and this new "trendy" way of cooking, I was able to enjoy eating in instead of out.

For me personally, I'm not eating to lose weight. I'm eating to be healthy, stay healthy, and enjoy the foods I eat. The foods that I love to eat shouldn't be making me sick.



I also learned that everything doesn't need to be organic. For example, certain fruits and vegetables outer skin protects them making it ok to eat. Let me tell you how I know I'm not crazy when I say that. Once a month I shop at Trader Joe's and I pretty much get the same items all the time. One such item WAS coconut milk.

On a most recent shopping trip, I noticed that the one you see pictured was not stocked on the shelves. In place of it was an organic brand. I can't remember the name of it but it wasn't Trader Joe's brand. Anyways, I asked one of the associates what happened to the other brand? I was told they no longer carried it.

So, another shopper overheard the conversation and she said I'm looking for the other brand too. We started talking about how much we loved it because it was affordable (under $1) and how creamy it was.

The organic brand was a little pricier. She then went on to say that coconut milk doesn't need to be organic because its hard shell protects the inside. I was like YESSSSSS that is so true. I knew I wasn't crazy for thinking that. She also said she was disappointed and will be getting her coconut milk elsewhere. I felt the same way because I think TJ is trying to tell me something. Let me count the ways...

1. They have, well HAD some bomb ass kimchi and now they no longer carry

2. Their aloe vera gel was a favorite of mines when I made my hair custard. Not no mo'!

3. The coconut milk situation.

Somethings going on. All I know is they better not get rid of their wine selection. 

Anyhoo, knowing that everything doesn't need to be organic is a major plus for me because the way my budget is set up. Speaking of budget, I recently came across this delicious website that focuses on healthy eating while on a limited income. Be sure to download the FREE gorgeous cookbook.

*MINIMALISM



I recently blogged about my journey here. I've been gradually eliminating things (and some people) that don't add value to my life. We're constantly being told that this or that is NEEDED in our lives in order to be happy. I bought into that and don't believe the hype!

I honestly didn't see a difference. However, I did see how I kept buying stuff with no place to put it. Also, how it was pissing me off instead of making me happy like it promised. It was a sign to start getting rid of unnecessary stuff. Starting with my make-up.

When I saw that my makeup bag wouldn't zip up, I was pissed. I was looking in the bag and taking stuff out saying why do I have so many similar shades of lipstick/blush/eyeshadows? Some I haven't used in years because I would forget about it and go out and buy a new one. It was ridiculous. Once I cleared that out, I had a nail polish makeover.

It was such a relief. Now I purposely put my makeup items in a small bag so that I use up what I have on hand before buying new ones. Guess what? It zips up and I'm no longer pissed.

I even took that approach with social media. I've been asked why I'm not on Facebook (I was), Instagram (thinking about it), YouTube (time consuming), and so on. My simple answer is as much as I would love to be everywhere I'm one person and I just can't. I like to be consistent, engaging, and active. This blog and Twitter helps me stay that way. I just don't see the point of being everywhere, let it go idle, and then end up deleting it.

Less is more for me.


*MY "CLUELESS" HAIR



This was the year of protective styles for me. I was not able to do my monthly Henntonite because the Indian store where I buy my henna is no longer in business. So, I went to another one and bought another brand. They didn't carry the brand that I liked. I made my batch and never went back to purchase again because I didn't like it.

I simply just started doing protective styles until I find some henna. Check out the styles! 

Bunnin' With A Bang!
Boxed Braids (Part 2)
Micro Braids
Boxed Braids
Crochet Braids

*PERSONAL GROWTH


*THIS SECTION INTENTIONALLY LEFT BLANK BUT KEEP SCROLLING THOUGH*

Remember when I said I was reading a lot more? So, I've also been reading a few articles here and there about self-care, self-improvement, self-love, and things of that nature.

As I was reading those articles I was like… Oh!!! So you mean I'm not suppose to be…


Throwing Chairs…



Pulling out sharp objects…



 I'm just boiling water the eggs are in there :)


For the record… I've NEVER done that

I'm a work in progress and I'm learning to be my own advocate, enjoy my own company, and not let other peoples opinion define me. I've grown spiritually, mentally, and... yada, yada, yada. What I really want to say is the older I get the less I give a damn. I did say I'm a work in progress.






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