Book Review

Book Review

“Believing In Magic” by Cookie Johnson

So I finally sat down to read this book. I was very hesitant because most of the time I can’t finish them. This one, pleasantly surprised me.

I always wanted to know her thoughts when Magic told her the news. This was very enlightening indeed. To hear their story was interesting. What I liked is that it was an easy read. It was as if she was having a conversation with you. Major plus.

What kinda irritated me was the bouncing all over the timeline. One minute we be in 2001, then we’re back to 1991. Some errors, but not enough to distract the reader.

Overall a pretty good book.



Book Review “Gravity”

“Gravity” by Shani Greene-Dowdell

I enjoyed this short read. Out pulled on my heart strings. Because it was a short read it moved fast. Which is okay for my limited time.

I would love to read this storyline as a full novel or series. The questions I have!!! LOL Overall, good job!


Packing For Your Trip

Today I’m talking about packing for trips! Many people love when it’s time to travel, but dread the packing part. For me, it sets the mood, I start getting ultra excited. Here are a few things I do:

  • Make a list (I already have my list for my May trip to Utah.)
  • When making your list, have a general itinerary and typical weather conditions
    Start packing early. I suggest at least a week before your trip. We forget things even with a list.
  • Some things I keep in my travel bag. I keep basic things like Deodorant, toothbrush, toothpaste and a comb in my bag. If it looks low after my trip I replenish it immediately.
  • If you have an extra cell phone charger (even if it’s a slow charger) pack it as soon as you start. I do this for two reasons. One, in case I’m running behind the morning of and forget or it gets lost.
  • For international travel, go ahead and pack your adapters.

Are you all ready for your trip??

10 People That Have Influenced Me

There are many people that have influenced by life one way or another. Here are only ten of those purple that have influenced me.

Mom…. My mom has always been there. Supported all of me and my sisters’ ideas no matter how wild they were. That undeniable support and love has taught me what love really means. You know those moments when growing up and you try to hide stuff and it backfires? My mom never said “I told you so”, only asked what happened. Even still today, we are all grown up and she still stands by our side unconditionally.

Sisters (equally)…There is a six and seven year gap between me and my sisters. Still I’m always able to learn from them. I’m closed minded as to think I can’t learn from them because they’re younger. If anything, the three of us are pretty different and have different strong points. I enjoy picking up new stuff from them. Their support is never ending, even if it’s low key sometimes!

Dad…My dad may not have always understood the why, but that didn’t stop him for supporting. He may not have always agreed, but he made sure home was ALWAYS taken care of. He taught us many things and made sure we didn’t just settle. Even as adults he made sure we didn’t want for anything.

Niece & Nephew…These two young people make everything all worth it. They remind me to not always be so serious. To have some fun. To laugh. Their hearts are so big it’ll humble you in seconds. A text, a call, a picture always brings a smile to my face. An interchange of learning takes place with them.

June Wiley…I worked under her for years. She knew her job. What she didn’t know was how to lead. Manage yes. Lead, no. She showed me many positive things as a supervisor as well as many things not to do. I’m thankful for the opportunity I was given to work under her. The experience was immeasurable.

The Crew…My girls! They really rock. They’ve taught me so much. We’ve had ups and downs but we were still here. I love that we can argue, disagree and stuff and still remain friends. Their has never been a question about their loyalty. Even moving to VA they kept me in the loop. If I didn’t know what loyalty was before, I would know now.

Keith (Lagrange)…He was my store manager in Lagrange. I enjoyed working under him. Especially being a new Assistant Manager. His knowledge was amazing. The way he taught was great. I learned to make decisions. I learned a lot about myself and what I was truly capable of. Yes we had a run in or two, but isn’t that to be expected?

Harrison Banks…Little does he know he showed me so much. He pushed me past boundaries I didn’t know I had at the time. He taught me you can have fun in business. Always open to trying new things was one of the things I liked about working with him.

Celita…My manager that always has the gift of Gab. We have a long history of working together. One thing I learned from her was her ability to speak confidently even if she wasn’t 100% sure. She helped me to speak with confidence.

Robert Jackson (Nightwalker)…My writing husband. He gave me my first push at writing poetry. My cornerstone and helper. When all else fails I call him. Whatever I need when it comes to writing he’s my support. Yes, I have fans and supporters that are invaluable. He’s so much more. He’s my writing husband. I write with others, but he’s my go to. Without him I wouldn’t have even started.

These are only 10 people that have influenced by life one way or another. Who has influenced you?

Photo Tips 8

36. Making sure that the photo tells a story.

Prior to hitting the shutter in taking a picture, it is best to take some time to check your subject, as well as the frame. Try to see if the subject blends well with its background, and other things that would be included in the photo. By doing that, you would be able to ensure that your photograph would tell a story.

Telling a story is very important. You want your client and your audience to understand what’s going on. To feel the emotions. It’s like poetry, but with pictures.

37. Setting yourself up for a challenge.

Improving your creativity can be done by challenging yourself in taking at least one good photograph each day. Even if you donโ€™t feel like it, you need to stand up, and take a picture even for the most uninspiring objects. By doing that, you would later on realize that you can simply make use of your imagination, in order to take interesting pictures.

I like to try this by doing the 365 Photo Challenge. There are monthly challenges that can help with that. I’m not doing the challenge this year (2018), but I did try to take at least one picture a day, even if I use my phone. I have the galaxy S8 Plus and it pro features I can use like on my camera if I don’t have it with me.

38. Read the user manual.

Many people today do not take time in reading the user manual of their digital cameras, assuming that all of the functions can be learned by simply playing with them. However, if you try to sit down and give it some time, you would realize that there are things that you can really learn from it. Reading your user manual would provide you a way to learn more about your cameraโ€™s functionality.

This is important. I even keep mine with me. I also keep a downloaded copy. It also helps with the creativity part.

39. Shooting pictures in the city.

Taking pictures in the city can be dull for some people. However, there are actually lots of ways that you can make the pictures look more interesting. One of which is to go to a multi-story parking lot, and take pictures at its different levels. By doing that, you would be able see great views of the city. Aside from that, it would also offer a fresh perspective over the usual ground shots.

I love city photos personally. Always be open to new ideas. This is critical!

40. Donโ€™t let rain get you affected.

Oftentimes, when it is raining, you could find yourself getting discouraged in taking pictures. However, there are actually lots of ways that you can go around it, and still take beautiful images. For example, taking a picture through a window that is covered with rain would provide you a gloomy effect for a change.

You can also buy a cover for your camera. I gout mine from Wish and it works great. If you have a telephoto lens you can also take pictures from an open window, it’s even from a covered patio. Use your creativity.

5 Favorite Book Series

Being that I’m an avid reader and part of a book club, I’m often asked what are some of my favorite books. That list can be numerous! So I’ve decided to break it down just a bit. Just remember, these lists are only partial.

Today I want to share my top five book series. If you haven’t read these books, you should. If you don’t read a lot or just getting into reading these are some pretty good paced books and will keep you sitting on the edge.

  • “Secrets of a Kept Woman” buy Shani Greene-Dowdell. She also has a stage play for the first one!!!!
  • “Gideon” series by Eric Jerome Dickey. I just love me some Gideon in these books!
    • “Naughty” series by Brenda Hampton. Any book that can have me in my feelings about a character like I feel about Jaylin, is a great book!
    • “Family Business” by Carl Weber. Ruthless is the only word I know to describe these. LOL
    • “Family Business” by Carl Weber. Ruthless is the only word I know to describe these. LOL
    • “Cross” by James Patterson. There are 27 books in this series. I think all except maybe two were fast paced reads.

    Have you read any of these? What’s your favorite?

    Lazy Is Not Sexy

    Lazy is not sexy

    There’s nothing like hard working people. No, I’m not talking strength wise. I’m talking about handling your business. Doing what you get paid to do.

    Growing up I had a hard working father, mother, and many hard working close uncles and aunts. Being lazy was never in their bones.

    As a woman, I work hard for mine. I expect the same thing from those that are in my circle. To be honest, my closest family and friends are all hard workers. Laziness is not who we are. I may not always agree with a business is doing, but if they are paying and me and I’m not breaking legal or moral rules, it’s done.

    Yes, there many pure lazy people, both male and female. Granted I don’t go home with them, thank goodness. It just shows how far the change has come. No, I’m not saying this generation or that generation because there are hard workers and lazy ones in each.

    I understand we all have lazy moments. Myself included. That should not define who you are, or what you’re about. When people hear your name, the first thing should not be the first thing that comes to mind. If it is, you have a problem. Yes you. No one else but you. Now you’re the one showing the lazy syndrome and only you can fix it. I don’t know about others, but I refuse to enable a lazy person.

    From what I see, we have gotten lax in many ways. We tend to allow those that are sub par to invade our space. What do I mean? You don’t want to be alone. Instead of waiting for a better match, you settle for the lazy person. You obviously know they’re lazy or notice the lazy tendencies. Still you stay because of fear or loneliness. Now you’re allowing that person to continue to be lazy. We all really do have to do better. I get that some will be lazy regardless.

    I’m here to tell you, lazy is not sexy. Any true business person, hustler or whatever you call it, knows the truth, lazy is so not sexy.

    Your thoughts? Agree or disagree?

    Photography Tips 7

    31. Doing a trick with sunglasses.

    Increasing the color saturation can still be done even with the use of a compact camera. All you have to do is to hold your sunglasses on top of the lens, in which it would serve as its polarizing filter. This would reduce the glare and reflections. However, take a few shots first, so that you can ensure that you wonโ€™t include the frames of your sunglasses into the picture.

    This sounds awesome. I’ll probably actually try this soon!! If you try it before me let me know how it works out for you.

    32. Do some experimenting.

    Lots of beginners in photography are pretty serious in following all the things they learned through the books they read. To stand out from the rest, you should do some experimenting by not sticking to the rules all the time. When you do that, you would be able to discover new techniques and compare different perspectives.

    I love experimenting. I like too understand what I read and how it works. So I’ll always try that way, but then, I experiment. Sometimes it works out. Other times, not so much. But I learn a lot by experimenting.

    33. Have your own calling cards.

    Having your own calling cards is a good way to let people know that you can offer your photography services to them. However, it is also one of the things you can do to make sure that you wonโ€™t be offending someone, when you take their picture off the street. If someone confronts you, just hand over the card, so that he would realize that you are an artist or a professional. By doing that, the person would feel good that you have chosen him as your subject.

    I personally haven’t gotten into street photography yet, but I agree, this is a fabulous idea.

    34. How to decide in deleting or keeping the image.

    Oftentimes, you might find yourself out of space to save your photos in. Therefore, it is best to decide on what images to keep and what images to delete. To decide on deleting an image, just simply think about hanging it on your wall. If you donโ€™t like the thought of doing that, then that means that the image should be deleted.

    That’s exactly how I make that determination. One thing I’ve learned in retail, if I won’t buy it, don’t sell it. Great motto.

    35. Build your portfolio.

    Whether you want to become a professional photographer or not, building a portfolio can still offer lots of advantages. Building one can be done online, in which all you have to do is to save your best photographs in a certain website, after signing up for your own account. By doing that, you would be able to check your photos easily, even when you are away from home, and set your standards higher.

    I currently use smugmug for mine. I like it because it has an app. I can upload to the from my phone as well as Download from the app. I can use that site for clients to preview photos as well.

    5 Things I Want To Learn In 2018

    I want to learn a lot of things. However today, in only going to discuss five of the things I want to learn. Just remember this isn’t all exclusive!!!

    1- To learn more about photography

    2- Increase my selling and customer service skills

    3- How to be a more confident speaker

    4- To successfully run my own businesses

    5- Get better at spoken word

    What’s something you want to learn this year?