One Day You May Have to Come Back

Hey Friends,The things I did in my 20s…Whew, that’s all I’ll say. 😂

I’m so glad to be able to return to some places better than before. (And that they let me come back, despite my juvenile ways concerning my faux boo, how I handled business, what I wore to work and more.)

#growthisgood #dontmixbaeandbusiness #actlikeyoumaycomeback

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With love,

Your Girl Angela ❤️

@angelamichele316

Love Your Body…Big or Small

Hey Friends,
Body image can be a monster! Whether we think we’re too big or too small, especially when we’ve been “fine or foxy” before, our view of ourselves can really mess us up.

I dare you to love you right where you are even if you don’t want to stay there, and not hide who you are. Medicines may affect us. Babies will change us. Illness can alter us physically, but none should change our minds about how beautiful we are.

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With love,

Your Girl Angela❤️

@angelamichele316

Your Mind’s Playing Tricks on You

The mind can be a mess. It can also be a blessing. Either way it’s the collector and receptacle of all things Y-O-U, whether good or not. With that said, it’s also a liar…a lot. There’s nothing like a tainted mind from a scarred heart, twisted interpretation, unhealthy self-esteem or unfortunate experience that jacks you up in the worse way ever with thoughts which simply shouldn’t be…if you don’t do something to heal it.

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I was perusing social media and saw some posts from someone who seemingly has a very negative perception about people.  This person’s posts were mostly subtle or direct posts about how people (mis)treat this person, rising above people, payback for people, etc. Sadly, this persons life is likely like that as well. It was painful to read because I can’t imagine living in such a cynical, negative and guarded state. I also can’t imagine how living life through that muddy mind filter might have prevented this person from having healthy, abundant and real relationships with various people this person probably has isolated, thought was against him/her, talked about badly or simply didn’t trust. And I’m Certain (with a capital C) that at the end of the day all this person really wanted was healthy, abundant and real relationships with various people.

I know this person is not alone in the “Your Mind’s Playing Tricks on You” saga.

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Here are the facts in case your mind forgot…

  • It’s not as bad as you think.
  • People aren’t always as bad as you think.
  • Not as many people hate you as you think.
  • Not as many people hate on you as you think.
  • Not as many people even think about you as much as you think they think about you.
  • Not everyone is against you.
  • Sometimes it’s not them you don’t trust it’s you. (Just being honest)
  • Unresolved pain can cloud clear thinking…for as long as you allow it.
  • Your own thoughts and actions can do far more harm than anyone else’s can.
  • There are people who love you.
  • There are people who understand you.
  • There are people who can be trusted.
  • The game of isolating people before you think they’re going to isolate you still leaves you isolated.

And lastly….

  • Sometimes how you feel others feel about you is really how you feel about yourself.

 

@AngelaMichele316

FIVE Days to #WEEatTogether17

WE Eat Together Fundraiser  is returning with an evening of delectable foods from WE Community Cafe, live music, a silent auction, and big city fun with friends overlooking the breathtaking landscape of downtown Birmingham. The event is set for Thursday, May 25th from 5:30pm-7:30pm on the stunning Kress Rooftop atop the Kress Building located at 301 19th Street North, Birmingham, AL. WE Eat Together Fundraiser benefits the healthy living programs of Urban Ministry, including WE Community Gardens, an urban oasis where young men are trained and employed in areas of gardening, composting, and bee keeping to then sell fresh, affordable produce or give to those in need and WE Community Cafe, a pay-as-you-can social enterprise cafe in the heart of West End which feeds people from all walks of life, and employs inner city interns to increase economic opportunity and professional development.

I’ll be there and hope you can make it or make a donation at: https://weeat.swellgives.com/user/angela.abdurrasheed for #WEEatTogether17

These wings will be waiting….

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@angelamichele316

The ABC’s of Singlehood pt. 2

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.

As mentioned in my previous blog post The ABC’s of Singlehood pt. 1 , 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 few more tidbits of what God and a lot of mistakes in life afforded me to know.

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Here’s 9-17. Stay tuned for pt. 3 coming soon!

  • I-Improve those qualities you know you need improved whether single or not.
    • If you know your attitude is bad (and you know you know) or you are selfish, or you’re lazy, or you have problems committing singlehood is the season to get those things together…by yourself.
  • J-Join groups to help you grow and stay occupied…a church small group, a book club, a Sassy Singles dinner club, etc.
    • Do something with yourself while single. You can boost your resume, build up your “team” and who knows, bae or boo might be waiting on you in the very group you join.
  • K-Keep the desires of your heart. If marriage is your desire, don’t let anything or anyone take it from you.
    • Do. Not. Stop. Believing. Marriage. Is. Possible. For. You. Point. Blank. Period.
  • L-Learn new hobbies and skills like cooking, how to change a tire, how to refurbish a chair, how to install hardwood, how to cut coupons, how to fly fish or something.
  • M-Make sure your expectations of a mate are being matched by you. Don’t want what you can’t give.
    • If you can’t afford steak don’t be mad because he can only afford hamburger helper. If you don’t have good credit don’t place unfair pressure on a man to have it because you don’t. If you aren’t bringing just as much to the table don’t be mad when you aren’t able to eat. Expectations of a mate should be matched by what we have to offer. A man is not your ATM, TransUnion savior, heart fixer, daddy do over or ticket to come up. Come up on your own time and own dime so you can help him come up even more.
  • N-Never let social media deceive you, make you feel less than, lead you to comparisons or have you become hopeless.
    • Don’t let Facebook, Snapchat and any other mode of media make you think married people are perfect, or that you, somehow because you’re not married are less than or will never have the love you desire…and all the extra good, and not as good stuff which comes along with it.
  • O-Open up your list of “I Want” in a mate to include, at the top, God’s list of “You Need” in a mate.
    • Be rid of those superficial things like how he dresses, what his salary looks like (now), where he’s from, how long he’s had the removable goldfront and all that good, not so good stuff which WILL NOT matter at the end of the day when you look back and laugh at how far God has brought you both because He brought you together.
  • P-Pray for yourself, for the mate you desire, for you all together, for patience, etc.
    • Pray. Pray. Pray…for him, for you, for his friends, for his mind, for his future job, for your patience, for his tolerance of you and all your “quirks”, for your future children, for everything that comes along with marriage. You can do this even before you meet the man.
  • Q-Quit settling.
    • I like to say Settling is for Quakers. Whatever you do while single don’t settle for less than who and what you know you deserve. Know your value and stop slinging discounts like a KMart Blue Light Special.
      • And if you don’t know what you deserve ask somebody who knows better.

To be continued…

@AngelaMichele316

 

Want a Job? Wait on God.

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Staying still can be a struggle when it comes to a career. Whether it’s needing a job, desiring a new job, wanting to get the heck out of dodge from your current job or wanting increase from our present job it can be HARD as the dickens to “hold your horses” when it comes to work. Now, I’m certainly not advocating being complacent in searching, but sometimes as we search, prepare, perfect our craft and serve well where we are (complaint-free regardless of what’s going on) we must master the art of simultaneously sitting still…and waiting on God to move at His never-too-late time.
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Life is showing me that the more we sit still the more God is setting things up on our behalf. While we’re in a hurry to chuck the deuces and leave He could be hand-crafting:
  • the right job
  • the perfect parking place
  • optimal office space
  • premium benefits
  • vacation for days
  • the freshest morning coffee
  • a dress culture which fits our closet
  • the smoothest schedule
  • the most skilled support
  • good ground for our professional growth
  • the glossiest business cards
  • that long-awaited mentor
  • a new boo to meet while strolling down the street
  • amazing opportunities for ownership
  • the coolest co-workers
  • a quicker commute
  • a generous salary
  • the tastiest free lunches, gas perks, work gear and other “freebies”
  • the greatest chances to give back
  • a testimony which makes all else make sense
  • or everything else His heart desires because He knows what we need, what He needs us to do, and who we need to be around to make it happen or help it happen for on the job.

The moral of the story: We never know what God is working out while we wait.

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I Don’t Like Your Wig

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Growing up I subscribed to the list of so many myths of what a good husband was about. Bless my heart.
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Yes, ladies, he could be handsome. He could be 6ft 4in with wavy, salt & pepper hair (hey boo!). He could have a fly car, a great job, some flat abs, superhuman “powers”, a generous wallet, a funny sense of humor, be super smart, or be your college school sweetheart with the best shimmy or shake you’ve ever seen. He could spoil you to pieces, give the best birthday presents and back rubs, wash a car better than a machine, know how to grill a steak like nobody’s business and smell like he’s oozing Bvlgari cologne on a perfectly timed schedule.
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However, recently, my husband whispered words that elevated my love for him to the next level as he gingerly gazed into my half-mascaraed eyes and said, “Uuuummm, yea, so, I don’t know how I feel about your new wig on you. I’ll get you another one that does what you’re trying to make that one to do.”
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Of all the thoughts and hopes and wishes I had growing up regarding marriage, there are a few staples which must be and remain. To the list of my mature “must haves” in a husband, some of which are listed above and certainly fulfilled, having a husband who can have my back is a blessing! Even if it’s in sharing something I may not want to hear, I would prefer him telling me the truth from a point of sincere love rather than have my out in the mean streets of Birmingham looking like a silly OLD lady, with scattered blonde highlights.  Yes, ma’am. Yes, sir. That kind of tell-it-to-me-like-it-is-with-love kind of love is definitely not a myth and permanently on my list.
Stay tuned for the new ‘do!

Wenonah and A Taste of Wind Creek

Who’s the next great American chef? Chances are it’s one of the uber-talented students from Birmingham’s Wenonah High School. On April 10th, students from the school’s Academy of Culinary Arts displayed their cooking skills to a crowd of educators, community leaders, family and friends as they competed in A Taste of Wind Creek’s “Ready. Set. Cook.” sponsored by Wind Creek Casino and Hotel and held at Innovation Depot. The winning prize? One thousand dollars donated to the school’s culinary arts program. The other winning prize? Well, that’s simple says the student’s culinary arts instructor Diann Pilgrim. “This event provides another opportunity for exposure for our students. It will show them that they can accept any challenge and succeed in it,” she said. And boy, did they succeed!

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In a battle of the best, school seniors were pitted against juniors in a three-person team of chefs-in-training who raced the clock ala “Chopped” style to prepare a five-ingredient dessert which was a surprise to them just minutes before the one hour given to prepare the dish. There was sweat. There was panic. There were giggles. There was lots of prepping and even more taste-testing. In the end there were two amazing desserts which emerged from the teen food geniuses. Chef Brandon Thrash, culinary instructor at Wind Creek’s Atmore location coached the future chefs as needed while they prepared their dishes. He said this event was Wind Creek’s specific effort to focus on the educational component of culinary arts. “It’s important to give back to the state who gives us so much. We want these students to know they are capable of being successful in this industry starting now,” said Chef Brandon.

Student chefs

Student chefs cooking

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Somehow I was chosen to be a judge. I not only got to watch the action unfold up-close, but I was also able to be one of the first to taste the undeniably delicious finished products of Chocolate Mousse with Fried Banana and Caramel Syrup served up by the Grub Club, also known as the 11th Grade team, and the winning dish of Strawberry Mille Fuille with Basil Syrup from the 12th Grade team also known as 17 Flavors. The dishes prepared by the students could rival that of a seasoned expert any day.

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Both dishes

2nd place dish
Chocolate Mousse with Fried Bananas and Caramel Syrup #delish
Winning Dish
Strawberry Mille Fuille with Basil Syrup #winner

While students hurriedly prepared their dishes under the watchful eye of the glaring media lights and cameras, and onlookers gazing from the outside of the glassed kitchen, the hundreds of guests in attendance were treated to a treat, for lack of a better phrase, by the renowned chefs of Wind Creek Casino. A Taste of Wind Creek not only placed a spotlight on the up-and-coming chefs of tomorrow, it also allowed the culinary arts scene right here in Alabama and right at Wind Creek’s casinos to shine. Guests feasted on foods from four stations including fried green tomato and prawn stack with crab cakes and brandy cocktail sauce, a (super-succulent) beef tenderloin carving station where the chimichurri sauce settled perfectly on the tender loin which was perched atop a warm roll and topped with microgreens, vanilla crème brûlée crisped to perfection with a surprise raspberry bottom, and shrimp and grits with crawfish tasso gravy and sausage from the hotel’s upscale FIRE Steak House. I was in foodie heaven! FIRE and I will meet again for sure.

Happy plate

Beef Tenderloin

Creme brulee

Fresh berries

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Wind Creek is traveling across Alabama to promote the importance of workforce development and how vital it is to reach people at a young age to help develop their skills. Through a partnership with Birmingham Ed Foundation, Birmingham City Schools and Wind Creek, the Wenonah High School students were fortunate to be included on the tour and empowered for the future. “Wind Creek wants to offer more training and skills to better the industry. Being here with these students is very important to us,” said Chef Peter D. Andrea. Next stop for the Taste of Wind Creek Tour is May 3rd in Huntsville with a summer menu coming soon. If you see me in Huntsville please save a seat and a shrimp for me.

14117896_1764529373793004_7480481555936330278_n@AngelaMichele316

The ABC’s of Singlehood Part 1

Recently, I had an opportunity to speak to single women and married couples at the Can You Relate Conference 2017. It was great for me too as my husband and I learned so much from the others. I spoke on the ABCs of Singlehood and thought I’d share a few tidbits of what God and a lot of mistakes in life afforded me to know.

As a newlywed of only three whole months, I realize I’ve been single in every decade of life. From my first high school heartbreak to all of college, to part of my 20s, to my divorce in my 30’s to my early 40s and now, finally I’m married again to my very best friend. With that, came a lot of opportunities, as I now like to call them, to see singlehood differently, realize the error of my (old) ways, work on fixing those things which had hindered me (like my sassy, quick-witted mouth), learn from those around me and get myself together. I, by no means, know all there is to know about singlehood, but let’s just say singlehood and I tangoed enough over time for me to at least figure out 26 nuggets to share with you. The most important of them all is that being single is a blessing, if you allow it to be.

Here’s 1-8. Stay tuned for Parts 2 and 3 coming soon!

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  • A-Attitude adjustments are a must through each season of singlehood. You won’t always like it, but that doesn’t have to affect who you are or how you see yourself.
    • I would be dishonest, also known as a liar, if I painted being single as peaches and cream with a cherry on top. It’s not. With that said, there is a LOT about it which single people may not like. When those times arise, it’s important to keep attitudes in check as not to further delay the process and progress.
  • B-Be not deceived by the myths of marriage…It’s not always fun. It doesn’t cure whatever was wrong before you said “I Do”. A slothful single woman can easily become a lazy married one.  An angry single woman can easily become a married bitter wife. Marriage is WORK!!!! It’s more than about cuddling, cute selfies and hot sex.
    • Reality shows, social media, other people’s marriage, possibly even one’s own first marriage might have painted a picture of marriage which simply isn’t real, or isn’t real all the time.
  • C-Celebrate the milestones of others who are walking paths you desire to tread…weddings, anniversaries, new babies. (Even throw the celebrations yourself!)
    • Wanna show God you trust Him? Do something for someone else in the very area you’re waiting on Him to do something for you.
  • D-Do things now which will benefit you later…save money, protect your credit, balance your schedule and bank statements, manage your household duties, take care of yourself.
  • E-Enjoy controlling your coming and going, your calendar, the remote, the thermostat and the radio.
    • That really is a blessing!!! (Ask me how I know as I have to watch movies and sports sometimes when I’d rather watch Food Network and HGTV all the time.)
  • F-Forgive any and everyone who needs to be forgiven, including yourself.
    • Do this as often as needed.
  • G-Get out of your head with the “by this age I shoulda” dates and age ranges which aren’t fair or feasible.
    • God does NOT operate on your calendar, schedule, timeframe or deadline. And that’s a GOOD thing! The sooner that’s realized the better life will be.
  • H-Heal from past hurts, self-inflicted and otherwise.
    • You know what’s hurting you. Do something about it now. Get help for it so that you don’t run the risk of hurting that man God is preparing to find you. (If you think God is going to let your pain hurt a husband…well, let’s just say He loves him, and you too much for that…which may explain the delay in delivery of your beau, boo or bae.)

To be continued…

@AngelaMichele316

 

 

The Feasts of Florida

A recent trip for my job landed me in Orlando, Florida. Known as home to the Mouse, it, for me, is now home to some of the best, most fresh and flavorful foods I’ve had in a long, long time. While there, my husband and I had the opportunity to enjoy the buffet breakfast from the beautiful Caribe Royale Resort, and its Calypso’s Pool Bar and Grill Restaurant, where we enjoyed great food and watched some great b-ball.

Ceasar Salad from Caribe Royale's Calypso Restaurant
Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad with Fancy Flower

We feasted Moroccan-style at Epcot’s Spice Road Table and experienced the most succulent coriander-crusted rack of lamb on a bed of fluffy jasmine rice, and engulfed the spiciest spicy lamb sausage and crispiest calamari we’ve had in…well, forever. Even the water, on that warm March day was especially crisp and refreshing.

Coriander-spiced Lamb Chops
Coriander-encrusted rack of lamb

 

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Aquil enjoying a Moroccan Casa Beer

 

We enjoyed the BEST seafood known to this man and woman from Johnnie’s Hideaway, so much so, we went twice during our five-day visit. The ooey, gooey, cheesy, buttery bread (which put Quincy’s, O’Charley’s and Logan’s to shame at the same time), the fresh seafood, the wait staff, the ambiance, the elixirs, everything was PERFECT!

Fried Seafood Feast from Johnnie's Hideaway
Florida’s Fisherman Feast: Fish, Shrimp, Oysters and Shrimp/Lobster Fritters

 

A big shirmp and me
Just little ol’ me eating a big ol’ shrimp at Johnnie’s Hideaway

 

Johnnie's Hideaway Famous Rolls
Rolls, glorious rolls

 

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Johnnie’s Hideaway Roasted Salmon with Red Aioli

 

Whiskey Sampling from Johnnie's
Private Barrel Whiskey Sampling for the hubby

 

Rounding out our trip was a trip to Disney Springs where we ventured into Mexican cuisine at the ultra-chic Frontera Cocina from one of my favorite superstar chef’s Rick Bayless. Succulent carnitas with melt-in-your-mouth pork and buttery black beans hit the spot for me. For the hubs? Only the best Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas would do.

Frontera Cocina's Carnitas
Carnitas! Carnitas! Carnitas!

 

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Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas

All-in-all, between an impactful work conference, and combined vacation/honeymoon/birthday celebration, the feasts of Florida were the perfect backdrop to a perfect getaway.@AngelaMichele316