Daily Gratitude Challenge Day #11: The Here and Now #DailyGratitudeChallenge

A few weeks back I discovered this really cool blog challenge by Suzy Speaks. I did one challenge for day 16,  which was based on hobbies and interests. Today I’m dipping in at day #11, what I’m grateful for in the here and now.

To be honest, I just wrote and shared an article about the impact on children and Covid-19, based on science. I shared some key research. Once I finished writing it I said to myself, ‘thank God for…’ and now wish to express that gratitude and take part in this challenge.

Here and Now…

I’m extremely grateful for the fact that I’m a ‘lucky parent.’ I wish to acknowledge this, and express gratitude for it. I am in a position where  I can take control and decide the fate, long term health, and care of my child. I can decide whether to send him back to school during this pandemic or not. Finance and money have no major say in it. I’m thankful that if my son stays home, we will not be financially impacted in a way that means my family will not eat. I work from home,  my hours I can decide what time of day or night I work. Which means I just have to swap around my working life. Yes it’s true I will be very tired by doing this LOL yes it’s true I may not make as much money as during the day I need to home-school and care for him, but we will eat! I wish to extend a prayer to all families who will be impacted on, as they need to leave the house and the kids go to school. Therefore finance and money are the deciding factor, or for whatever reason they are pushed to send them back.

 

I wish to express gratitude for my career before I became an author, the ten years I spent in the classroom as a teacher. From this I am able to carry out home-schooling confidently. I wish to extend a prayer for those parents who may not feel as confident, and leave you this website with home-schooling resources, every country can access it. https://www.twinkl.co.uk/

Personal Development

I want to express gratitude as during this pandemic, I’ve blogged about it before it has allowed me to make some wonderful progress! Writing two books and completing one novella. I’m about to finish a second novella too. Not only that I’ve been on a personal development journey. I completed a Reiki course, and just enrolled on a Yoga and Pilates teacher course online. Purely as during ‘lock down’ I had to keep myself amused in the house, what could I do? I found some online courses to kill time.

About ten years ago or maybe just over I started a Yoga teacher’s course, but circumstances did not allow me to finish it. This time all these years later I would like to, and aim to complete my course. I also have had a chance to go back to practicing both Yoga and Pilates which has been a blessing, to help kill time at home.

Writing

I’d like to express gratitude for my talent as a writer, just because I want to put that thankfulness out there! I’ve started a journaling challenge for the next twenty one days too, I would like to express gratitude for this opportunity, blog, and article I read about finding me randomly. It seems like a brilliant way to get through these tough times that might ahead with how life has changed with the pandemic.

Interaction, Social Media and the Internet Radio

This is going to sound weird, but I would die without my Internet radio, and the BBC World News Service station. I don’t watch TV at all, I prefer books and the radio, music or YouTube. Plus my son takes it over so I barely watch it. I would like to express gratitude for technology which allows us to all keep up to date with what is happening in every corner of the world, from the comfort of our own homes.

And everyone or anyone who has picked up a book of mine over the pandemic read it, reviewed it, or reached out to me and made contact. Also everyone who follows and reads my random blog posts and rants I’d like to express my gratitude in the here and now for all of you. What are you grateful for? Join in with Suzy Speaks #DailyGratuitudeChallenge and write it down.

Rambles, Life, Reflections, Just Write! #amwriting

Afternoon people! Happy Monday. It’s been a while since I’ve sat down and written something personally from me. Where have I been hiding?

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Life During The Pandemic…

Well, since March and my last personal dive into my life with you all, things have been pretty much the same. While lock down restrictions eased, and then were enforced again in my part of the world, my family and I pretty much stayed put indoors. We were like, ‘you guys go out first and see what happens’ LOL.

It’s so sad, but I predicted or anticipated a ‘second wave’ of Covid- 19 and that’s pretty much what has happened. Am I against wearing a mask? Hell no! I understand people may find it uncomfortable, but, damn….what about your health and the health of others? Anyway, it’s an ongoing debate in every corner of the world. I wear mine and will continue to do so.

I have been homeschooling yes, but then decided to allow my son an actual holiday from it all, after all it is summer. I aim to restart again in a few weeks, as to be honest, I really don’t know if I will  send him back to the classroom. Regardless of what the governments around the world may want, I really am not sure, until I see enough evidence to suggest that, it’s safe! For us all, not just because ‘they are children and less at risk.’ Both my son and I have delicate health so I need to be careful. Moving on enough about Covid-19!

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The Writer’s Life During The Pandemic!

In a way, Covid-19 has been a blessing for me, it’s allowed me to be so productive while stuck in the house, going to bed late and waking up late too.  Since March I have written three books! Two have been released  365 Days of Writing Prompts for Romance Writers  which seems to have been a God send to some authors. Also The Art of Short Story and Novella Writing.  The third I’ve just completed which is novella #1 of my ‘Unsolved Mysteries Series’ I’m working on. I’m super excited, to move away from romantic suspense (for a second) and work on this. The burst of inspiration came really while writing a romantic crime thriller novel, and after a discussion with my publisher.  I have over five book ideas planned, one written  I’m half way through the second. The goal is to get the second one done this week, as it’s novella length.  Now I’m pretty much done with Sacrifices due for release on the 30th SeptemberI think for a moment I’m ‘all romanced out.’ In terms of writing and motivated to write in my other genre  I love. I feel 2021, will see a lot of work put out here. Don’t worry though I will be back to the romantic suspense!

The pandemic has also allowed me to narrate one of my own books, which is done and out there for the world. It was a wonderful experience and I would do it again, for sure. I’ve also placed book #1 of two of my romance series in audio too, not narrated by me. So overall  I need to express some gratitude to the pandemic, my productivity has increased without a doubt.

 Reading Life During The Pandemic!

Oh man this has been the beauty for me during this time I love to read, and always wish I had more hours in the day for this. I’ve read some fantastic books. A lot of  them have been non-fiction, empowerment, and spirituality genres. I’ve also really been drawn to short stories of all genres! I think this came after writing a book about writing them LOL. And being drawn to write some myself.  My Kindle Unlimited membership has really served its purpose over this pandemic.

Keeping Amused At Home During The Pandemic!

One of my other superpowers is cooking, I just loooooooooooooooove to cook! Foods from around the word too, I’d say I’m pretty good. I’ve never been much of a baker though, I found this super cute set at the supermarket one day and bought it. Not only does the food taste good, it looks cute while cooking.

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So that same day, for the first time ever in my life I tried to bake some home made bread. Here’s the before….

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Ta  da…. and after!

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I was so impressed, I buy fresh bread daily,  now I’m think I should just make my own. For my first attempt not bad, and it tasted really good!

Reflections on the World!

In all honesty, I am keen to see some healing happen. I think back to May time when we had the whole #BlackLivesMatter movement ( which still matters to me by the way), just because the protests may have died down, the cause in my view has not. I pray daily for the lives lost at the hands of the police, and generally due to the colour of a person’s skin.

I also pray daily for the pandemic to just ‘go away’! And also as we move into the winter time, and the flu season rolls around, that there is not a lot of worry regarding general flu and Covid-19.

I pray for school teachers forced to return to work around the world, and the children forced to return for whatever reason. Also, their parents  who are worried as hell. But, they need earn a living.

I pray the political heat in the USA eases, that people vote and remove Trump. I said it. I’m not a fan, and you all probably know I’m not as well. Personally, I find him a man full of racist views and white supremacy, this is based on half the shit that comes out of his mouth, and actions. I’m not making assumptions, this is what he teaches people he’s about. Even those overseas can see it.

And the protests in Europe over the president that the people of the country Belarus, feel has rigged the re-election have justice!  I pray for  you.

Last but by no means least, the poor students who have lost places at university, due to the exam grading system, and with lack of actual taking exams in the UK. I pray for you guys! It’s hard and tough right now.  As an ex-teacher of students of this age, my heart really goes out to you guys! Listening in to the BBC World Service radio 24/7 I’ve also heard reports on students in Thailand calling for overhaul of the monarch’s involvement in education- good luck fighting for your cause. The students in Africa who are just now taking their exams, due to the impact of the pandemic, good luck and I pray for A grade results and university places!

I hope you guys have all been well wherever you are reading this update and ramble from me. I hope your family is safe too, and some how your life is not too disrupted by the changes we’ve all had since March this year. Catch you soon! Keep well.

 

 

Daily Gratitude Challenge Day #16: Hobbies and Interests #DailyGratitudeChallenge

I’ve just read a really cool blog post by this blog I’ve been following Suzy Speaks. It’s day sixteen of her challenge she has set, for herself and her followers to write about a different topic they are grateful for and follow the  #DailyGratitudeChallenge. While it seems I’ve missed fifteen days of great topics, I’ll jump in today as hobbies and interests are something I’m deeply grateful for, in fact they kinda make me who I am.

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Astrology and The Solar System:

I’m a qualified astrologer with a diploma in astrological studies. The study of the solar system from this science I’m  extremely grateful for, and my love of this subject. It started out while I was a teen, if you remember the shop Woolworths I stumbled across the annual astrology book for Aquarius, with a horoscope for each day of the year. I bought one ever year! Until Woolworths when into administration of course. The love of the stars, Moon, planet’s energies never left me. I ended up completing my studies about one or two years back.

Why am I so grateful for this science? Well, while many think this is ‘woo woo witchy esoteric stuff’ (and I would agree LOL), if helped me to understand me, life events, where I am going and even confirmed that, yes I am born to be a writer or working the journalistic field. Simply by a detailed study of my own birth chart, with my actual date and time of birth. Basically, astrology give me a lot of healing and direction in life. When I studied the chart of my son and other people, I was amazed at the accuracy I had from friends whose charts I read. I was able to confirm things about their life, or experiences I could not have known. In the case of my son, it also confirmed his approach and experiences with learning.

The study of the Universe will never leave me, I follow it closely and look at what’s happening in the world, and the planet’s energies. Overall, I am grateful as this skill I have learned has helped me to help others heal as well as myself, and it’s just a cool thing to say, ‘yeah I’m an astrologer’ LOL.

 

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My Sewing Machine and Fashion Design:

My nanna died when I was fourteen, her name’s Lucinda. She never worked she had eleven children, she was a homemaker and my grandfather worked. She arrived in the UK  with my grandfather from the Caribbean islands, and basically looked after all the family. It’s her I owe my interest and skill with a sewing machine to. She loved to sew, and I later on at school I  picked the subject ‘textiles’, which is now what we call ‘fashion design’ all these years later, as an option for my GCSEs at school when I was fourteen. I gained a C grade, not bad. It was in this class I learned how to use a machine, sew and express myself creatively with fabrics and materials. I also really loved my teacher, she was Italian if I remember correctly and so funky with her dress sense.

Later on, I started to collect dress making patterns for clothes, got my own machine and just before I had my son I was obsessed with making dresses. (That I had to wait until I had him to wear, as I was pregnant) . It took a while, YouTube, buying books to understand the patterns, and learn the craft to a more advanced level but I did it! I’ve not made a dress in about six years, since he was born. But I have my dress stand, and I named her Lucinda after my nana. As I write this I  feel like I should really go fabric shopping and do something.

In London, there is a high street called Goldhawk Road if I remember correctly, that has shop after shop after shop of fabric stores! I remember spending a lot of time there, and money before I had him.

I am grateful for this interest and hobby as, it really gave  me something to smile about when I was in school. I  looked forward to the classes, later on in life it also gave me a great sense of patience, working with accuracy, and learning the art of how to create clothing from materials. I am also grateful for it as I was heavily pregnant in the summer months, which was no fun and found myself indoors a lot of the time. My sewing machine and this interest gave me a pass time when it was too hot for me to leave the house.

 

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Civil Rights, Law, Politics

I just love this! I have an interest in all the above, I would not say it’s a hobby at all just an interest. That said, I am grateful for my interest in this area as it has allowed me to be able to make educated decisions, statements,  have opinions, and hold views on certain things that are backed up by rights and laws I am aware of, or have researched and can interpret.

I feel that this interest is probably something else that shapes me as a person, I won’t stand for anything that looks like it could be some kind of injustice, or breech of civil and human rights.  I am grateful for it as it has allowed me to be invested in causes such as women’s rights, human rights and the black lives matter movement.

Take a look at this cool daily gratitude challenge on Suzy Speaks and join in!

 

Writing Prompt: Dancing! #RagtagDailyPrompt #RDP

I’ve followed this blog RagTagDailyPromps for a little while,  today managed to log on just when they posted the prompt for the day so, I’ll take part today…’Dancing’

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One thing I just looooooooooooooooooove is dance, to watch it, do it, and learn it too! When I was about maybe seven  or eight years old, I attended my first ever dance class. It was ballet, tap and modern dance that I fell into. I kept this up until  about maybe 1999. I stopped as I suffered a knee injury! As a result all these years later I still have what the doctors called ‘fluid  on the joint’ of my right knee. It’s the reason I have trouble bending down or sitting on my knees, well, that and the fact that I’m the wrong side of thirty-five now LOL

One of the most fond memories I have of my dance classes is, when we did a choreographed dance to ‘ born to make you happy’ by Britney spears. I loved Britney as a pre-teen and teen. ( I still do if I’m honest with myself), but this song as a youngster in the 90s I adored, and really enjoyed the contemporary dance our class learned. We had a fantastic teacher, I remember everything down to my leotard I wore, sadly not all the steps. I’m thirty-seven we’re going  back to 1999 a long time ago!  Here’s the video for old times sake. As I play this in the background while I type, I still remember the words. Check out Britney’s moves! I love her.

 

 

 

Later in life, believe it or not, I actually learned the dance movies to Britney’s ‘Slave For You’. That was when this song first came out. I can’t get enough of the way Britney moves her body!! Generally when she dances. I find her a very talented dancer, many disagree and feel she’s ‘taught’.  While this is true, just like say Beyonce you can Brit has natural talent.  I learned the routine from @1:36 time stamp  to @1:53 it’s not even two mins BUT, it took a lot of practice,  laughs, pausing, and sweat LOL

 

 

I really like belly dancing too over the ‘lock down’ period this year, during the pandemic, I have watched some YouTubers who give classes. I even bought a scarf with bells to wrap around my waist while I TRY to do the routines. These days I don’t really dance that much, as in classes,  I feel that my knee would not be able to support doing any  highly choreographed dance that well, but I do still have a love for it.

When I was in my twenties I spent a hella-lot-a time in clubs with my girlfriends, before I became a mum or had any really responsibilities in life. Each weekend we headed to central London,  to the array of clubs we had back then.  In my early teens and twenties I was ( and still am) a massive fan of soulful house music and the UK’s ‘Old Skool Garage’ anthems!  In east London there were some great places, also the club ‘Fabric’ back then was a spot we’d go to a lot.

I can’t pin-point exactly what it is I love about dance, or any kind of exercise that is dance based. For example pilates, aerobics, yoga and even pole dancing! It could be the music, and my love for that. If there’s a song I love I automatically feel like moving to it sober or not LOL. I also like how good it is for the soul, I find it releases ‘happy vibes’. If time was not a problem I think I’d love to try to learn how to pole dance, but classic pole dancing that’s elegant as well as pole dancing for…well gentlemen’s clubs LOL ( Why not!)

I would also like learn salsa, it is a lot of fun. I only ever did one class with a girlfriend as it was more like  her finding a ‘date’, rather than something we’d do each week. In all honesty, it’s time for me between juggling life and writing, I just don’t have the time. If I did, I would love to return to dance classes — gentle ones due to my knee and see if I’ve still got it!

Do you like to dance? If so what do you like to dance to? Do you have a favouite song or music?

Male Authors of Colour Wk#3: Urban King’s Take Over! #blacklivesmatteruk #blacklivesmatter #blackauthorsmatter

Urban Kings

If you’ve been tuned in since the 1st July,  you would have met some great male authors of colour. All month, each day one author who represents a certain genre has been featured. Myself and a few other female authors have campaigned to help them reach new readers. This weekend, we’re on to the final genre ‘Urban Kings.’ Here we have a line up of ten male authors, who represent all different areas of fiction. The one thing they have in common is that they’re all ‘urban’ writers, be it fantasy,  erotica, general fiction etc they bring an urban vibe!

In the line up we have:

Alexzander Christian

Anthony Monroe

Joel Daniel

Teddy Mack

Nick Adams

Kevin Casey

Thomas J

Julian Foster

Author Pugh

Mike Wilson

We’ll get to know some fun facts, interests and a little bit about what each author brings to their urban genre. I’m rather looking forward to this group, as there is a big misconception that there are not many authors of colour who rep the fantasy or paranormal genre. I had this discussion just last week with a fellow reader and author on Facebook!  There are many of them, they just need to be elevated.

If you’d like to catch up on what you’ve missed from the 1st July, we had the ‘Street Lit Kings’ week one, week two ‘Book Boyfriends/romance/poetry and non-fiction’ and the final week ‘Urban Kings.’  Just look back and the most recent blog posts to meet authors and their books.

On reflection I must say that I am really happy and proud, to have come up with this month long promo. As I said in my previous posts Dear African American Man, and  Why Does He Trigger You   I am a mother to a Black- British male who is just six, and my boyfriend is an African American man, from a state where the police are far from kind to black men. The UK is not innocent in it’s handling of Black-British men either, we’ve had cases like George Floyd. I covered this in my article  in the up and coming July issue of Aspiring Authors Magazine LLC which can be checked out here.  So, it’s really important to me that the world starts to change, following George  Floyd and Rayshard Brook’s deaths at the hands of police officers.  I will do all that I can to help support this demographic of men, who are often tossed aside, hurt, killed, and looked at as if they are some kind of public enemy number one. My son simply can not grow up in this environment,  he deserves better as he grows up, and so does every man who identifies as a man of colour. Regardless of his descent be it Black-British, Caribbean, African, African-American, Asian etc.

So as we enter the last week of promo for male authors of colour, let’s not forget that #BlackLivesMatter and they always will, until statistics can dispute the fact that the lives of black men are under threat, and have been for sometime. No one can dispute this, especially when you use statistics to prove it. By saying ‘Black Lives Matter’ does not mean no one else does, it just means in order for ‘All Lives  Matter’ to have any real meaning or relevance,  we need to recognise that  black lives are and have historically  been wiped out brutally by police, and racism is still very much alive. I make no apology for saying it or supporting it #blacklivesmatter.

Have a wonderful weekend! We’ll kick off with the final group here soon.

Writing Prompt: Tell Us About Your English Teacher… Damn! Okay

Stealing one of the personal blog prompts today from 365 Days of Writing Prompts for Romance Writers .  Wow my English teacher in what we’d call in the UK ‘secondary school’ I guess ‘high school’ to the rest of the world, in a nutshell he was a bit of  a mess! LOL.  I won’t name him, for now I’ll call him Mr. X.

 

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Where did I go to school?

In the depths of south London, Mum actually sent me out of the local area to school. At the time she didn’t feel the standard of education was great in our local area.. It was just a short bus ride away, about no more than thirty to forty five minutes from where we lived. It was a mixed gender school also, generally the school did have a good reputation back then. Lots of parents sent their children there. The only thing was, while the general reputation of the school was good….some classes were unruly! My English class was one of them LOL. Not me personally, when I was in school I behaved well, I was there to learn. I actually really enjoyed this subject, languages and design and technology too this is where I excelled. But my classmates were a hoot, to say the least. It was mainly the boys, we had a group of popular boys who loved to wind up our English teacher. There was also one particular female student who had a big problem with listening and behaving. To me, sitting at my table I just bit my lip and tried not to laugh!

What was your teacher like?

At the time when he taught my class Mr. X must have been in his late thirties to early forties. He was tall, very skinny! Had long, stinging , dirty blond hair, ALWAYS wore black and had bad breath. Thinking about it now all these years later, I bet he was some kind of goth. I left school in ’99 at sixteen, but it never really occurred to me why  he may have always wore black.

Anyway, like I said the class was a little troublesome and he spent a lot of his time shouting, mainly at the same students. His favourite line was ‘siiiiiiillllleeeence!’ Then, he’d slam a book or his hand on the desk, *cringe*. Nope, nine times out of ten that did not work, and he ended up splitting up the tables of students. In the end he gave us a seating  plan, so certain students couldn’t sit together.

As a teacher, looking back now all these years later was he a good one? No, not really. I say this as I myself after I left school went on to be a high school teacher, and spent ten years in the profession in the classroom. I worked my way up to head of my subject. On reflection compared to what  I know now , after teacher training he wasn’t a good one.

Did I learn…? Very little. Partly due to the class behaviour, but when the class was under control even then as I sit here and think, ‘what did I learn from Mr. X?’ I draw a blank!

Was it his fault? Hmmm it’s  a hard one. In all honesty, I think he was at that stage of what we call ‘teacher’s burn out’. When a teacher is so jaded about the profession they just collect their pay and that’s it.

Did  you get on?

In all honesty, I never really interacted with him much! I was one of the good kids there to learn, I just sat back and watched the ‘show’ every lesson. The battle of wits between him and the unruly kids. Did he ever shout at me? Yes, there were times when I got so bored I would talk, doodle, not really tune into what was going on. You could hardly blame me though if you were a fly on the wall. Did I ever talk back to him? Yeah, a couple of times as in all honesty I was one of the good kids, I felt ‘why are you picking on me!?’ as any teenager would at that time.

So in a nutshell, while English was one of my favourite subjects at school, sadly I never had a very inspirational or even dedicated teacher. It was more ‘crowd control’ at times in my lessons. Which is sad, because yes my grades in English did suffer, generally. And of course he did predict me and a lot of that class with low grades…. did I get a low grade  for my GCSE exams? yeah I got a C grade. This is not ‘low’ technically A-C is good, especially back then this was the 90s. But I was capable of so much more.

What happened after school?

Believe it or not, after school when I left I re-studied  English. I went to what you could call an  ‘online’ community school and sat some extra tests for another English qualification. I came out with a B, now that’s more like it! I didn’t do this right away, I was probably in my early twenties as it was at this point I was searching for work, and what I wanted to do. Employers (at the time) wanted A-C grades in English, okay I had that I got a C but I wanted to re-do it so I did.

Generally I feel on reflection that my English teacher at school had a lot on his plate, but even if the class was golden he was very jaded and job hardened I think, on reflection.  Sadly my English teacher did not spark my love for reading or writing, this came myself! Just something I enjoyed with little inspiration from the person who really introduced myself and classmates to it. You can’t win them all I guess!  I  don’t think I would go back and change things, as in the end it panned out okay. I just hope if Mr.  X is still alive if he ever thinks about his time in the classroom, that at some point in his career he can look back and say, ‘I loved that job even if class 7PU were little shits’ LOL.

 

 

 

 

Update on Book Narration… Here’s The Finished Product! #non-fiction #spirituality

A few months ago I wrote a really detailed post about how to have your books produced in audio, it’s really not as hard as many authors may think.  I ‘m in the process of producing some of my books right now. Also, I shared that I was narrating a non-fiction book for another author. Here it is! She’s on sale and doing well. I loved narrating this book, you guys who know me well know that, subjects like this are of great enjoyment for me to read. I have some promo codes for anyone who is on Audible, who would like to listen in to the book in this version! just contact me here. and send me a message to say you’d like a audio book code. Here’s a bit about the book… I narrated under a pen name of Amethyst!

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Your Intuition Calling development to increase your abilities.

Are you interested in how you can increase the joy and happiness in your life? Are you currently looking for a way to change your life from within? Are you wondering why your mind continues to change as you meet new people. In this book, it will provide all that and more….

This book will introduce you to basics about intuition and show you how to use it properly. You will also learn more about meditation, power of prayer, and all aspects of your mind.

You may be quick to ask what intuition is and you are not alone.

We are all born with a set of powerful abilities and one of them is intuition. As the world changed, we have lost track of this natural ability. But throughout history, we find that intuition has helped us carve our paths.

Here is what you will get with this book.

  • Common traits of intuition
  • Surviving emotional vampires
  • Understanding what intuition is
  • Shielding and clearing your energy
  • Different types of meditation techniques
  • How to move and stay on your Intuitive path

 

Why should you be interested in this book?

This guide also coincides with a consistent meditation practice that combined can greatly benefit the practitioner.

Experience a new and higher way to live life to its fullest daily.

This book isn’t teaching dogma or telling you something is good or bad for that matter, but it is a practical guide to help use the forces that you cant see to improve your life.

Check Out Amazon Here

 

Sunday Free Reading, Goodies, and News From Author LaSasha Flame. #amreading

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Happy Sunday, happy to share with you today yet another author dedicated to supporting #blacklivesmatter and #blacklivesmatteruk, here’s a newsletter from Author LaSasha Flame, filled with news, goodies, free reads and some authors of colour she’s showcasing this month! Check out her letter here on this link.

So… It happened again, I got another magazine gig!

I think you really need to listen to the Universe when it ‘talks to you’ and shows you your ‘path’. Many of you know me well if you’ve followed my blog for a while, you know I like to research, write, read and look at the facts and make an informed decision. It could be due to my career and work before I started writing romance. 2017-2018 I held a magazine editor and columnists’ post I loved it!! It’s a shame that the founder of the magazine couldn’t hold down what we started. But, I felt that magazine writing is something I’d love to do more of.  Via support for #BlackLivesMatter from this side of the Atlantic, I landed a new job as a columnist again for Aspiring Authors Magazine! Man, I’m so happy. I found out from another author they were seeking articles on black culture and the whole ‘black lives matter’ movement. So, I sent my original idea for a blog post across, and landed a role.  The magazine has a focus on connecting authors around the world, especially those who are minority writers. And helping to further them in the industry.

Check them out below! My article will be in the June edition, and I am mulling over ideas for the rest of the year’s features. Thank you Universe!

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Writing Prompt- What’s On Your Mind, Right Now?: This Week’s Global Events

Well, it’s been an eventful week to say the least, you’ve seen it, I’ve seen it the world has experienced it. George Floyd’s death is still ( rightly so) making headlines. Also, the ever changing statistics regarding Covid-19 ,and let’s not forget what I would call insulting or outrageous comments from Donald Trump.  It’s been a week so I’ve stolen one of my own blog writing challenges from 365 Days of Writing Prompts for Romance Writers, ‘what’s on your mind, right now?’ You know me, never one to shy away from a well articulated and deeply reflective POV.

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Was it Murder to the 2nd Degree?

I’m not American, as you know so I did have to research firstly what murder to the 3rd degree was, in terms of American law to understand the first charge against  Derek Chauvin. In all honesty, from what I read it ( 3rd degree murder) came across to me as an outsider, non-legal person, non-American just someone trying to understand what this  type of murder is, that 3rd degree is  ‘unintentional’. My first thought was, oh hell no! I know what I saw eight minutes and forty-six seconds of restraint? While being told ‘ I can”t breathe’ You wanna say that’s ‘unintentional’. Then, I read up on the 1st and 2nd degree. In all honesty again, as a person looking in objectivity yes, there was ‘malice’, ‘intent’ and I would argue ‘premeditated’ aspects of that officer’s  actions towards George Floyd. Therefore I’d say from what I saw it was more like 2nd degree murder. Many that I had exchanges with in discussion on social media felt, there was not really a premeditated action. I personally looked at the evidence 1. that officer knew George  apparently they had ‘history’ 2. that officer had a string of complaints against him (which went un-handled) evidencing his ‘premeditated’ actions and ‘malice’ towards men of colour. But hey, who am I ? Just a member of the public trying to apply the evidence to the law, fairly and remove my own personal feeling. I know what I saw, and I know what I read about the definitions of murder and yes, I believe murder to the 2nd or even 1st degree is correct.

Trump’s Never Ending Insults

Yes, insults that’s what I’d call them. I remove how I personally feel about his tendencies as a human being, and focus on what comes out of  his mouth. He has made two very insulting comments this week, especially with regards to George Floyd ‘ looking down from heaven.’ I don’t need to remind you what he said, if you’ve been following the news you’ll know. His tweets have been made highly public. Then, there’s the comment about what he has done for African-Americans…. I’ll wait, because I can’t see what has been done. Apart from efforts to divide American people with his comments, racial slurs he has historically made about Africa the continent, Chinese people and God knows what else. I won’t even rant on about this, but in all honesty the man is insulting and a disgrace…I said it. I’m not the only one who feels this way, and you don’t have to be an American to see it. Celebrities, as well as members of society, black, white, brown, and anything else are disgusted. I understand he has supporters and honestly I hold nothing against them, it’s just the insults from him I find hard to comprehend or support.

World-Wide Protests! And Pressure!

Oh I felt so proud when London showed up, and marched in the streets in support of George Floyd. I am loving the fact that world-wide people are coming together France, Ghana, Italy, Syria you name it. I’ve seen the support and I’m sure you have too. It’s wonderful to see people of all colours saying, ‘I Can’t Breathe’.  Not just for George Floyd, but every person of colour who is some kind of ‘public enemy’ for not just for police brutality, but society who have some kind of distaste for them simply for skin colour.

Which brings me to a point, while I am loving the fact that white Americans and white people are showing support, the whole ‘if they fire stand behind me’ that’s happening across the water in all honesty I’m not loving. I believe it sends the wrong message, as a person of colour I don’t think we can walk around hoping there is a white person to ‘stand behind’ and protect us, stand beside us, friend. If you want to support us, I’ll say it again beside us in union we don’t need to stand behind you. We’ve ‘stood behind’ for so long it’s 2020 not 1960. But, don’t get me wrong people of colour welcome your support with all our hearts. And I see the kind, good, and loving message that is trying to be sent with ‘if they shoot stand behind me’ or white people standing in front of non whites at protests who are marching for equality. We see it!  We love it! We want you there we do! And thank you from the bottom of our hearts, but reflect on the other side of the coin. Would beside be better than behind? Maybe? I’m just saying.

Covid-19

Man, I am at a loss with this. Yesterday I read a article on the death tolls and how many feel, protests and breaking ‘lock down’ will bring a new surge of illness. Yeah… I hear this,  really I do. My only thought on this is BE CAREFUL keep apart, wear masks, and have organised protests if at all  possible. Maybe I am a little naive in saying this, how can you have ‘organised protests’ when there’s so much passion? Covid-19  is serious, and something we do need to tackle. I listened in to a talk show on Thursday, the discussion was ‘are people right to put lives at risk, in order to protest’. My view was, if you’re not ill then you are free to show support and try to stay at a distance. It made me think though, how important the ‘I Can’t Breathe’ campaign is to some, so important many Londoners and those around the world have given Covid-19 the middle finger to march or support and change. Power to you!

There’s still not much evidence on the impact  on children with Covid-19 and if they can be key carriers. My son has not returned to school I still won’t send him. I wrote about that a little while ago.I still support social distancing and lock down where possible, for those who a vulnerable with health. I have become a ‘keyboard warrior’ showing my support for change in the world right now.

Online Racism…

Let’s think about this. Last week I saw a high number of very openly racist, derogatory and down right disrespectful comments on Facebook.  Some were from law enforcement too, teachers, nurses and people in a position of ‘trust’ in society in terms of their jobs. I joined the force with an active group to shut it down. I’d like to encourage you also, if you see these kind of posts shut it down, contact the employers of the racists and show them the evidence of how their employees are behaving. I wrote about that a last week also.  Do what you can, if you can’t be on the street protesting keep an eye out online. Last week, I saw more than ten racists fired, their employers put out public statements! Well done, stamp it out we don’t need it.

So, that’s my account of the world right now, and how I’ve been taking part to show support for #BlackLivesMatter and #ICantBreathe. And while I’m at  it, I just want to say saying ‘black lives matter’ does not mean no one else does, but saying ‘all lives matter’ ignores the fact that can be statistically supported that, black and brown lives are wiped out the most in society. By police or other members of society who are ‘trigger happy’ I call it, and happy to kill first and ask questions later. It can’t be ignored,  it has gone on for too long, the statistics are ear-watering to read. Black lives matter because they are wiped out more than others, simple. Until you can dispute that point with evidence based figures and statistics they will ALWAYS matter,  it does not mean no one else does not. It’s evidence based that they need to be focused on and highlighted that they matter.

Have a wonderful weekend! Keep well until the next ‘rant’ LOL.