Art, Beats & Lyrics Brings Out the Best

Each time I attend it becomes easier and easier to explain the phenomenon known as Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey Art, Beats & Lyrics (AB+L). Think, if you will, as to what would happen if you took a family reunion, an art museum field trip and a music festival placed them in a piping hot pot, seasoned them with soul, swag and sass, sprinkled in a few flakes of “the culture”, saturated it in speaker-thumping sounds from all the genres of music that really matter, added a big dollop of dope art and interactive exhibits, tossed in a swig of Jack, then let it simmer for hours in an urban, artistic roux. That, my loves, perfectly conveys what AB+L Birmingham 2018 served up. We got served!

Regions Field was the perfect playground for a standing room only crowd of Birmingham’s best to experience the best art and music creatives from around the country have to offer. Along with the wall-to-wall art and free-flowing Jack Daniel’s elixir DJ Wally Spark, DJ Rahdu, Gina T and WERC Crew set the night’s musical mood and made it just right for hip hop musical guest BAS. Since it’s humble beginnings in Atlanta in 2004, AB+L has been the vehicle moving culture forward in all its urban glory. “The motivation behind the start of AB+L was to give a platform for urban artists and musicians that weren’t getting accepted into many of the galleries and outlets at that time,” said AB+L Curator Dwayne “Dubelyoo” Wright. With no plans of slowing down, Curator Dwayne “Dubelyoo” Wright says AB+L will continue to be next level. “We have been striving to keep the wow factor at our events. We incorporate new technologies and non-traditional ways of showcasing art to keep the audience excited year after year,” he said.

Art, Beats & Lyrics Birmingham was electric! The people, art, music and Jack Daniels (for the drinkers) were too. I can hardly wait for next year to savor the dopeness also known as AB+L.

IMG_3838.jpg

IMG_3840.jpg

IMG_3823

IMG_3829

IMG_3826

@angelamichele316

The Royal Wedding: Love Conquers All

The beauty of the #RoyalWedding pales in comparison to the undeniable message of love conquers all. I am in awe of the utter courage displayed by #PrinceHarry, now known as #DukeofSussex as he totally forsook all forms of centuries-old, archaic, isolating, and hurtful traditions and chose LOVE. On the largest platform afforded to man, he had the gumption and gall to display his love in its most diverse form from nuptial start to finish.

With the poise of a prince and the relentlessness of a refined rebel, Prince Harry went against the royal grain to marry #MeghanMarkle, now known as #DutchessofSussex. He pledged his love to his betrothed, a black/mixed race, divorced, American actress from a broken home with a muddy family and messy half siblings, then publicly, and permanently professed his love for his princess in an authentic royal wedding with some good Gospel music, African influence, a preaching preacher, light-heartedness, lots of prayer, lots of love, no dignitaries, some movie stars, commoners, and The Queen. None of that must have been easy. None. Even in the midst of the most spectacular of celebrations, it certainly could not have been easy also for Meghan Markle to leave her life in America as an actress to purposely enter into the biggest fishbowl of her life for the fairytale of her life as she now dons the unofficial title of “America’s Princess”, while possibly being subject to the venom and hate, and comments, and opinions and ludicrous spews of tomfoolery from all around the world all for the sake of love. It can’t be easy.  

But they decided that love conquers all, even hate. And in a moment, which, by no means was an ordinary wedding, their wedding was so much more to so many in the world. An “I do” by this #royalcouple pushed and pulled some people by their ashy Fred Flintstone feet out of the Stone Ages to the New Millennium. Now, Yabba Dabba Doo on that!

maxresdefault

Say what you will about marriage. Feel how you feel about life. Like the Royals or not. Think as you may about the wretched ways of the world, but LOVE conquers all and May 19, 2018 was a beautiful, blue sky reminder of just that.  Prince Harry’s and Meghan Markle’s union is truly a bold, historical move to be marveled. I’m glad the world had a chance to watch. Now if we all would just act accordingly.

@angelamichele316

LAP016-G-02

We Can Be Pretty in the Process

life-happens-JPEGLife happens. That’s an undisputed fact. In the midst of the rollercoaster called life which often brings with it Six Flag sized ups and downs, one of few things remain constant and true. We don’t have to look or act like what we’re going through.

PrettyWord

Sickness, Death, Divorce, Family Matters, Work Woes, Financial Stressors, and Spiritual Battles may come bringing with them life-altering and life-changing problems. Often times, there’s not much we can do about them as we go about the process of being done with them. But there’s something we can do. We can put our best face and best foot forward not becoming like the pain, struggle or challenge we are enduring. We can still decide to wake up every morning with thanksgiving to God, a grateful heart and a smile on our face. We can still decide to speak encouragement to ourselves and others. We can still decide to be nice and allow others to be nice to us. We can still decide to do the essentials like comb our hair, brush our teeth, shower, shave and show up wherever we’re going looking like we’re not going through. We can even decide to kick it up a notch and put on our best from head-to-toe as a proverbial one-two punch to the devil and our problems. Yes. Life happens, but we can still be our best even as the rollercoaster goes up and down. Choosing that path won’t always be easy. Choosing that path won’t always make sense. Choosing that path won’t always be understood, but it will keep us poised for God to move and for those watching how we handle life to see His power based on our “pretty”. So no, the “up and down” process of life may not always be pretty, but we can always be pretty in the process.

You can be pretty in the vitamin sea

@AngelaMichele316

 

It’s My 5th Blogiversary

5th blogiversary

Five years ago on January 2, 2013 I took a leap of faith and wrote my first official blog post.

Wow! Time has flown and I’m so grateful to have had each of you along the way for the ride. I’ve published more than 900 posts simply because I love words, and from time-to-time have something to say. There have been ups and downs, life changes, challenges, celebrations, events, random musings, inspiration, too many testimonies to count and food. What’s next? I don’t know, but I can’t wait to share it with you.

And as always, remember…Life Gets Better!

@AngelaMichele316

Rapper TI and Coors Light put a little extra Magic in the Classic

Acclaimed rapper, actor and businessman TI was in Birmingham last month for the 76th Magic City Classic. At the request of sponsor and Magic City Classic supporter, Coors Light, the Atlanta rapper spread his southern hospitality in the Magic City with a concert performance.

The partnership with TI and Coors Light is one proving to be beneficial as a presentation of two checks of $10000 each from Coors Light were presented to Alabama State University and Alabama A&M University.

Photo Credit: MillerCoors

TI 2

Becoming a staple at the McDonald’s Magic City Classic, the Coors Light Tailgate Experience was also one for the record books as game-goers and tailgaters braved the muddy conditions to enjoy the festivities which included live music, vendors, interactive games and more.

Photo Credit: MillerCoors

TI

A good time was had by all, especially from my household!

@AngelaMichele316

 

 

The ABC’s of Singlehood pt. 3

Being single can be HARD! It can also be very helpful in shaping women and men to become better for the next level of life whether marriage is included or not.

recite-wid4gj

As mentioned in my previous blog post The ABC’s of Singlehood pt. 1 and The ABC’s of Singlehood pt. 2, in March 2017 I had an opportunity to speak to single women and married couples at the Can You Relate Conference 2017 hosted by Algernon and Taneisha Tucker. It was great for me too as my newlywed husband and I learned so much from the others. I spoke on the ABCs of Singlehood and thought I’d share a the last tidbits of what God and a lot of mistakes in life afforded me to know.

Here’s the rest…which happens to start with Rest.

R-Remember to rest. You can’t want a man to take care of when you don’t take care of yourself.

S-Stay far, far away from the wrong somebodies. (You know exactly who they are. You know exactly what they do or you do that doesn’t need to be done. The date, location, or faces may change, but the foolishness which ALWAYS comes remains the same.)

T-Trust the process and purpose of singlehood. God knows what He’s doing, when He’s done and why it took so long in the first place.

U-Use this time to travel and have FUN! By no means is singlehood a green light to be boring. Be safe, but have fun. Be wise, but live. Be frugal but explore, learn, go and see.

V-View singlehood as a blessing, and treat it as such.

W-Work out. (Yikes!) Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and in the hands of the one who takes care of her temple. Firm hips, pouty lips and how low you can dip are not guaranteed.

X-eXude eXcellence Yes, I cheated with this letter. Carry yourself in such a way that greatness, love, humility and confidence, kindness, poise, and contentment are what others see.

Y-Yield to wisdom from those who know what you don’t yet know, like the married people, divorced people and single people who are perfectly okay where they are.

Z-Zip your lips to complaining about any and all seasons of your singlehood. Don’t cancel your own blessings by complaining.

you-are-exactly-where-you-need-to-be-quote-1

@AngelaMichele316

It’s My Facebookaversary

On June 19, 2010 my life forever changed. I know that sounds dramatic…but…that’s the day I finally joined Facebook! I’ll admit, I was NOT on the FB bandwagon when it was first introduced to people of a particular age (as in my friends). I’d seen and heard about the infamous “inboxing”. I’d seen it capture and corrupt the attention of someone I knew well, and not in a positive way. I’d heard about the “mess” that ensued as people expressed their thoughts, two cents, opinions and unsolicited advice. I just didn’t want any part of it.

facebook-a-look-back-video

However, since posting my first inspirational quote and the first pictures of a photo shoot of my sister as she was about to POP just before giving birth to my new niece, to sliding in a few “my husband left me a few months ago and I’m going to smile and show off my long hair as best I can” photos, Facebook has become my way to connect/reconnect with SO many. What a wonderful seven years it has been catching up with, and getting to know you all on Facebook, then slowly inching my way to the likes of Instagram, Twitter, WordPress, Pinterest and Linkedin.

(See my first two profile pics…Whew! That girl was doing everything in her God-given power just to smile. I’m proud of her!)

Social media is a powerful tool, people. I’ve seen it be a blessing to me and so many. I’ve sadly seen from a firsthand perspective how it has been used to divide and misguide stirring up the most seemingly uncontrolled spirits of division, comparison, jealousy, low self-esteem and plain ol’ meanness that I’ve seen in all my life.

For me, I’d like to think Facebook and its friends to be the place where I can laugh, cry, learn and “like” all in one post. It’s where my words and videos live whether they come at 3am in the morning or in the middle of a meeting where I should be paying attention and can’t, and where my blogging bug took over. It’s where the most beautiful babies, weddings, proms or parties light up a feed. I’ll admit, it’s also where my investigative eyes roamed, or my “I’ll show you what you’re missing” pictures/posts prevailed. It’s where I learn of my favorite concerts coming, shows to watch, and new words to say (or not say…like On Fleek…LOL!) It’s where my eyes are opened to the social, civic and political climates of this wild and wacky world in which we live. It’s where my mind is challenged by people who I didn’t even know could think so very deeply. It’s where I rep my school…Roll Tide!

Love-Quote-I'm-so-happy-we-ended-up-here

It’s where I’ve been consoled and console as life’s tragedies, divorces, death, physical challenges and trials are not just shared, but covered in serious prayer. It’s where my memories in pictures live, not just for today, but for the tomorrows when those pictures may be all someone has. It’s where my spirit is fed as I have soooooooooo many Jesus loving and inspirational, regardless of their faith, friends. It’s where my relationships are restored (Hey, today is the day I reconnected via a FB request with an old boyfriend from the 90s turned good friend named Aquil…and look at us now! Happy “we met again on Facebook” Anniversary, husband!). It’s where a middle of the day meme can send me into the most uncontrollable laugh just when I need it most. It’s where my fashionistas serve up couture and discount offerings like a Waffle House waitress working for her biggest tip. It’s where at-home-cooks and diners-out post food pics or restaurant recommendations that make me salivate like a toddler in a dentist’s chair. It’s where people share their lives as much as, as best as and as often as they can for those in which they care to connect.

Despite any of the negative which transpires on my timeline from time-to-time I’m grateful for the family and friends who bless me each time I scroll my timeline. You are my inspirations! Keep up the great posts!

14955462diewortekeepitupaufeinemblauendaumenhochsymbolisiertgenehmigunggutesfeedbackermutigung.jpg

@AngelaMichele316