This tag is associated with 19 posts

Detroit’s Very Own Jessica Care Moore: Black Tea and The Legend of Jesse James


The Last Poets introduced me to who the world knows as Detroit, Michigan’s International living legend, Jessica Care Moore. And I can say I have been thankful and humbled by this lovely Queens’ energy, creativity and brilliance ever since. The world was first introduced to her as the first poet to ever win the nationally televised Showtime at the Apollo competition 5 times in a row. That same year, she would be filmed for the documentary Slam Nation. The film followed her and the 1996 Nuyorican Poetry Slam Team which also featured Saul Williams and Mums Da Schemer. To be in the presence of such a resounding soul, thinker, mother, teacher and friend is no less than a brilliant event. She is the true definition of a soul sister/mother/healer/gangstress, poet, humanitarian, revolutionary and all around down to earth Lady.

See full feature via Detroit’s very own Jessica Caremoore . “Black Tea and The Legend of Jesse James” | bluuwise.

Help! I Have No Money To Spend This Christmas


Christmas is a time of giving and receiving, and a time for families and friends to gather together to exchange gifts, eat, drink and be extremely merry. Its a time when children’s dreams are realised seeing them finally get the new, up to date toys they’ve been desperately asking for in the months leading up to Christmas. If you have children (and even if you don’t) many of us want Christmas to be a special time of year. For many people this can be extremely expensive – luxurious presents, fridges bulging with food, Christmas parties and so much more.

The build up to Christmas can be a truly magical time of year and whilst all of this is lovely- it can all be too much, especially for families on a budget. The fairytale image of Christmas can soon diminish in a puff of smoke when the harsh realities of life swiftly bring us crashing back down to earth.

So does this mean you should perhaps miss out on having a lovely Christmas altogether? Not at all! What this does mean is that you can eagerly look forward to having an amazing day with your family and friends without breaking the bank, and here is how!

1) The giving and receiving of gifts

The biggest temptation is to splash out on lavish gifts that we probably can’t afford and probably shouldn’t buy, especially if we are buying for children, its very easy to get carried away! Instead you should research the things you intend to buy beforehand to enable you to get the best price available whilst remaining sensible. You can create a fantastic pile of gifts for the children to open on Christmas morning and some have memorable experiences without spending a fortune.

Being organized helps – you’ll often finds sales in the approach to Christmas (and indeed after Christmas in preparation for the following year) so shop in sales, you”ll be amazed how much money you can save. Also keep a look out for things like voucher codes to save you money off of all your online purchases, where possible. Voucher codes are fabulous even if you just save on the delivery costs, it makes it all worthwhile! If you have a group of grown up friends, why not suggest doing a secret Santa present swap so you have less presents to buy. Take your kids on big days out (Santa’s grotto, ice skating, snow man building etc) so that they have lots of memories throughout the whole season showing them its not all about the gifts, its about spending time as a family creating memories you’ll treasure forever.

2) A Christmas meal shared is a Christmas meal enjoyed!

When I have visions of a family sitting down to their Christmas dinner, I tend to envisage a huge table filled with a banquet of meats, potatoes and vegetables with glasses of wines and spirits flowing freely amongst the gleeful guests! To me, this is what Christmas is all about, eating, drinking and being merry. A massive family Christmas dinner is truly lovely – however it can also be expensive. This year, why not suggest that everyone gets involved with the dinner preparations. Asking your friends and family to help with the meal by bringing the starters, dessert or wine can really help to reduce the expense. I’m pretty sure that your guests will be relieved that you have advised them what to bring along rather than having to worry or second guess what you might need. Leaving you all to have a lovely, busy, family filled Christmas meal without having to worry too much about the cost.

3) Think ahead, plan ahead

It can seem like the last thing you want to do, but imagine how much easier this Christmas would be if you were really organized and ready for it? Purchase items like wrapping paper, Christmas decorations, Christmas cards and even a new Christmas tree in the January sales. You’ll find all sorts of items reduced throughout January so you can save yourself a small fortune buying these items then. You can simply store them away in the cupboard until next Christmas. It can seem like a chore to shop for Christmas items when the festive season is literally just over and done with but it really can make your next Christmas so much easier to arrange and far less expensive for you (and your family budget). Of course now you have all of these items, your Christmas budget will not be quite so restricted as it has been in previous years, so it really is a win-win situation!

My name is Nicola and i have interests in technology, health & fitness, interior design and family matters.

Scrumptious Alternatives To Turkey This Thanksgiving and Christmas

Christmas dinner tends to be the same, year after year. There is the traditional turkey, along with all the trimmings, and then Christmas pud for dessert. Carrots, parsnips, brussel sprouts, stuffing, pigs in blankets, Yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes- all the favorites are there. It certainly does sound delicious. However, don’t you sometimes wish you could have something different for the Christmas feast? If so, you are in luck. Whether you are a vegetarian or a carnivore, there are plenty of different options for you to choose from. So get ready to loosen your belt and prepare yourself to take a break from the Christmas turkey and pudding for a change, and try out some new tasty options.


1. Fatten up the goose

Straight out of Dickens’ Christmas Carol, a roasted goose makes a delicious main entree for your Christmas feast. It will also look very impressive set out as the main centerpiece on your beautifully decorated dinner table. Some people think the goose is a bit too fatty. However, if you prick the skin well, it makes a very juicy and delicious meat.

2. Try ostrich for an exotic Christmas alternative

If you’d like to try something a bit more exotic and unusual for once, how does Ostrich Wellington sound to you? You may be wondering where you can possibly find one, but if you do a bit of searching there are farms that have them available for sale. One nice thing about preparing an ostrich is that it only requires a minimum amount of cooking. A 2kg ostrich tastes a lot like a nice beef fillet steak and can feed up to 8 people quite easily.

3. A vegetarian alternative

You don’t have to consume a nut roast every year. Even meat lovers have come to realize that there are delicious alternatives for Christmas dinner that don’t involve meat. One simple option is a Quorn roast. Stuffed butternut squash is another tasty alternative. For a very special vegetarian feast, try field mushrooms stuffed with chestnuts and garlic cheese. Top it off with pastry to come up with an amazing vegetarian dish fit for kings and queens.

4. Go international

If you really want to try something different, you could break out the barbie like the Aussies. Of course, this depends on the weather. Select your food of choice. Crabs, prawns and other meats are all delicious options.

5. Fish for the feast

If you have both fish-eating vegetarians and meat eaters coming for Christmas dinner and trying to find something safe to serve, how about salmon? You could even go for something a bit unusual and spicy. Whip up a tasty soy marinade made with soy sauce and hoisin, along with chopped red chili, Thai fish stock and herbs, crushed garlic, star anise and lemon as a garnish. Doesn’t that just make your mouth water? An entire side of salmon will feed 8 to 10 people. This simple option will definitely impress everyone at the dinner table.

6. Christmas pudding

Sometimes it’s nice to take a break from the favorite Christmas pudding. For dessert, you can go for the tradition pud, or perhaps just a fruit salad. However, there are plenty of more options to try. Consider the Stollen Parfait. It features all of your favorite holiday flavors. Just slice and top with icing sugar along with glacé cherries for a delicious Christmas dessert. If you still are craving the traditional hot pud, consider a hot panettone pudding. This still provides you with the festive fix you are craving but provides you with a bit of a different taste that will finish your Christmas dinner off quite nicely.

By Geoff Roy

Geoff Roy raises awareness of charities selling Christmas charity cards on the Cards for Charity website.

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National Poetry Month Spotlight: Vernon Davis Jr. – Her Smile



Her Smile
Silent Smooth
A Mystery In A Sea Of Love
Waiting To Open Up
Unveiling Her Innermost Intimate Secret
As Questions Of Desire Float By

Her Beauty
Drawing You In
Be Careful–You May Get Lost In…

Her Eyes
Enticing Your Thoughts
To Travel Into…

Her Warmth

Her Willful Wayward Ways
Leading You To…

Her Smile
Simply Has A Secret
She Chooses Not To Reveal…

Just Yet

And As Attractive As She Is
You Are Impressed

Her Smile

BIO: Vernon J. Davis Jr. has been writing poetry since the early seventies. He was first inspired by Langston Hughes’s poem “Impasse”, which started his journey and adventure into the world of poetry and the spoken word. Vernon’s very first published poem,”Beautiful Black Woman”(the basis for his poetry book) came out in 1978 in a magazine called Black Forum. More poetry followed in other magazines like SoulWord and Dawn, a magazine supplement to the Los Angeles Sentinel, an African-American newspaper. Mr. Davis has also taught Creative Writing and recited his poetry in talent shows, Church gatherings and open-mike forums. He is still inspired by and in awe of Langston Hughes, Nikki Giovanni and Maya Angelou. His Idols. His creative collection of Love poems,”Love,is, the Beautiful Black Woman” is his 1st book. Vernon’s 2nd book of poetry–“The Emosewa Woman”–was released Feb. 14th, 2010. He is currently working on his 3rd Book of Poetry, Tentatively Titled, “Her,   She,   Woman”(Her, She–Hershey(Chocolate) Woman).


Women’s History Month Spotlight: Tina B. Tessina, PhD “Dr. Romance”

TBT photo Kathy's photo of me laughing_crop

Name and Occupation?

Tina B. Tessina, PhD, “Dr. Romance” licensed psychotherapist and author, and Chief Romance Officer of LoveFilter.com

What do you love about being a woman?

I have a huge amount of empathy and encouragement to offer people.

What do you hate about being a woman?

Seeing fellow females abused and confused unable to get their lives together and I am only able to help the ones I can reach.

Who influences you?

My father, first and foremost. My mentor, the late Rev. Denton Roberts, M.Div., MFT. Many scholars and thinkers in the therapy field. My very accomplished and talented women friends, and my beloved husband of 31 years.

Tell me something about yourself that would shock people:

What would probably shock people is to know I was essentially orphaned at 18, and I’ve made my way entirely on my own, working first as a waitress, then getting an office job and working my way up to being the Accounting Supervisor of a nationally known company, then founding my own bookkeeping business so I could put myself through college, then going through five years of schooling and training to become a licensed psychotherapist in California.


Top Story – Why Being A Self-Published Author Is Similar To Being A Bar Owner

Cowboys & Rednecks

It’s odd at first to liken an author to a bar owner; the former tends to be more introverted, working alone, while the latter is usually extroverted and operating among chaos. But when you look at the blood, sweat and tears that go into each profession, the similarities are striking.

When you have your finished product, your work is just beginning

If you wanted to build your own bar, you’d have to put in a lot of hard work before you can open your doors: design, construction, hiring, and all other logistics. But once you turn on the lights, your work is only beginning. You aren’t just the person whose name is on the sign; you’re the janitor, therapist, accountant, diplomat, advertiser, and inventory clerk. You have multiple jobs to do to ensure the success of your business, and chances are you weren’t trained for any of them. The same goes for writers. Just because your name is on the front cover doesn’t mean you are just an author. You must also be a promoter, event coordinator, advertiser, account manager and business developer. In both cases, you followed your passion and jumped in head-first. You’ll figure things out as you go along and improvise your way to success.

You will have to deal with unpleasant people

No matter how much you begin to profit, it’s inevitable that one night a customer will enter your bar and have one too many. He or she will become belligerent, and you’ll have to handle the situation. He may even do enough damage to drive other patrons away. Likewise, if you are a writer putting yourself out there, you may receive a bad review from a bitter journalist. You’ll have to deal with this guy. If you get a bad review on your self published book, it’s okay – just keep on truckin’. You’ll have more customers tomorrow.

At the end of the day, YOU call (or pour) the shots

Hard work and sleepless nights-aside, this is your operation and what you say goes. Bar owners can decide what to put on their menu, determine what the drink of the day will be, or who they book for entertainment. As a writer, you have the final say on your cover design, your content, and how you sell your book. You don’t have so-called editors forcing you to make changes you aren’t comfortable with. You’ll have to be resourceful, but barring anything illegal, you don’t have to answer to anyone when it comes to how you want your project to turn out. YOU are in the driver’s seat.

This article was written by Alessandra Macaluso.  Alessandra is an Author, Blogger, Writer and DIY addict who loves to share lifestyle tips and recipes on her personal blog.

Black History Month Spotlight: Alisha Somer – Writer, Editor & Publisher


What do you love most about being a Black woman?
I love the color of my skin and the kinkiness of my hair. I love how we hold so much mystery: everyone wants to know our secrets. I love the strength we possess and our ability to build and uplift a community.

Who or what inspires you most?
The women who contribute to the magazine who have the courage to share their art and their trust in me to showcase it inspire me so much.

My children’s energy, their big dreams, and their unwavering belief that anything and everything is possible–that inspires me!

Advice for Black men and women?
Sometimes you need to leap before you look. When I started my magazine I didn’t have a 5 year plan or any capital, but I believed in my dream and I took a risk. If you want to do big things, you have to take big risks.

1st issue

What are you working on that we need to check out?
I am currently gathering submissions and laying out the next issue of BLACKBERRY: a magazine, a literary magazine featuring black women writers and artists. This is my way of giving a voice to those who would otherwise be silent. I hope to continue to expose readers to the diversity of the black women’s experience and strengthen the black female voice in mainstream and independent literary markets.

Where can we find you online?
You can find my writing at http://www.alishasommer.com

Are You A Goddess or a Doormat?


According to Pablo Picasso womankind can be split into two distinct types, those being the Goddess and the doormat. Basically there are the women that take the world in their stride and women who let the world walk all over them. But just what it is that makes a woman a goddess according to Picasso?


The goddess knows exactly who she is and is more than comfortable in her own skin. She knows exactly what she is capable of and is confident of her abilities. She is not arrogant, just self assured. She seeks neither attention nor approval from others, and will listen attentively rather than constantly take the floor herself, wanting to be heard.


She lives her life the way that she wants to without worrying about conforming to the ideals of others. She has dreams and goals that she aims to achieve and she will not easily bend to the will of others. In a relationship this woman will not try to be the ideal woman that her man would like her to be, she is who she is and he should love her for it. To her a partner will compliment her existence not complete it.


The goddess can find something to smile about in every situation, she has a sense of humor that leaves others in the shade. She does not hold a grudge, not does she display bitterness towards others. She has the ability to see the bright side, infect others around her with her enthusiastic energy, and more importantly she is able to laugh at herself.

Well Groomed

A goddess knows how to look after herself, she is a great believer that if you look good on the outside you feel just as good on the inside. She does not overdress however, always wearing an outfit appropriate to each occasion. She believes that beauty shines from within and does more for a woman’s appearance than any designer handbag ever could.


The goddess is a patient woman, she will not be found hunting for a man, or going out of her way to attract a certain individual. She believes that good things come to those who wait. She is prepared to let the man pursue her, to charm her and win her affections. She is certainly not a cougar.

Commands Respect

The goddess commands the respect of those around her. She has well defined boundaries and expects them to be respected. If someone mistreats her she will have no problem in standing up for herself and making sure that things are put right.

So, are you feeling like a goddess or a doormat? Perhaps it’s time that you started adding a few goddess like character traits to your persona, and started facing the world with confidence and enthusiasm rather than rolling with the punches and settling for what you can get. Remember that above all else the goddess is very aware of her femininity and sexuality, embrace the goddess within your and let her shine. 

Article Provided By: Are you trying to spruce up your appearance? Visit Sue Arnold now for the best in UK jewellery design. 

The Ingredients of a Historic Novel

Regardless of whether you are a huge fan of reading or not, you have likely read at least one historic novel in your lifetime that you felt like you simply could not put down. You may not have known exactly what it was that drew so much of your attention in, but something was definitely there that separated this book from any other you ever laid your hands on. While it could have been any number of things that kept you interested, we have come up with a list of five ingredients that nearly all historic novels have in common.

Protagonist and Antagonist

First of all, any good, historic novel features a protagonist and an antagonist. The author will also take it a step further by making it to where you are not only reading about the events occurring between the opposing characters, but they will actually make you “cheer on” the protagonist. Additionally, they will work to make you want to hate the antagonist as much as possible, and you may even find yourself trying to punch the book to land a shot on the evil character.

On the Edge

Historic novels also keep you wanting to know what will happen next. While you may have a pretty good idea what will happen based on how the characters have acted in previous chapters, the answer is still not a dead giveaway. A good novel will be nearly impossible to put down for the night because you are dying to know what will happen next.

Able to Relate

You will also find that practically all historic novels make it easy for you to relate to the characters and the setting. Rather than giving you a brief description of what the characters and the setting look like, you will quickly feel like you are actually there. If you are not careful, you may quickly feel like you are actually running from the antagonist yourself.


The best novels in history also have climaxes that are built up to. The authors know you do not want to read something where similar events keep happening over and over again, so they choose to have smaller events lead to a big climax to keep you on your toes.

Relationship Tension

Finally, you will find some type of relationship tension in practically all historic novels. Sometimes it will be a boyfriend and girlfriend breaking up, while other times it will feature a child who is disowned from his family.

While some books are flat out boring to read, you will find that the five ingredients used to create historic novels make them impossible to stop reading. Pick up any historic novel today, and you will likely find all of these ingredients inside.


About Author

This article has been written by JP for Orlando Figes who is a Professor of History at Birkbeck College, University of London. He is the author, among other books, of The Whisperers: Private Life in Stalin’s Russia and many more such interesting novels.

6 Books Every Writer Should Have On Their Bookshelf


Every writer knows that reading is essential to good writing. Here are six books that all writers should have on their bookshelves for reference. If you don’t have them all, get them today.

The Writer’s Market

For every freelance writer or write who dreams of getting published one day, The Writer’s Market is an invaluable resource. Every year a new edition of The Writer’s Market is published, and it contains information about almost every single publication that take submissions. Detailed information is given regarding what that publication pays, what type of work it accepts, how to submit, and more. Submissions are organized by genre, and the book also contains helpful information and advice on writing query letters and following up with your submissions.

The Elements of Style

The Elements of Style by William Strunk and E.B. White is a classic book that’s been popular with writers, professors, and editors for decades. It’s a timeless book that gives concise, easy-to-understand advice on writing style and guidelines that work for improving the work of all types of writers. While “style” certainly varies from writer to writer, the “elements of style” in this book are simple rules that work for everyone and truly make for better writing, no matter the genre or personal style of a writer.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary

A dictionary is essential for all writers, and The Merriam-Webster Dictionary is a solid choice. There are many different dictionary publications, and it really doesn’t matter which one you choose, so long as you have one. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary has been trusted for centuries, and it’s updated every year to reflect changes or new word entries.

The Merriam-Webster Thesaurus

Another bookshelf staple is a thesaurus, and The Merriam-Webster Thesaurus is a popular choice. Once again, there are many different thesaurus publications to choose from; it’s just important that you have one. The Merriam-Webster Thesaurus contains more than 150,000 synonyms and antonyms, and it includes example sentences and brief definitions.

The Associated Press Stylebook

For journalists, The AP Stylebook is a must-have reference tool. All news writers can benefit from this book that helps to clear up just about all of the word usage questions you could ever have. The AP Stylebook contains incredibly useful information and rules on spelling, capitalization, punctuation, proper nouns, number usage, and much more. It’s updated every year to reflect any changes, and the dictionary-style layout makes it easy for you to look up the answer to any question you have while writing.

The Chicago Manual of Style

The Chicago Manual of Style is a book just like The AP Stylebook, but it is intended more for book authors and editors. It contains many more rules and guidelines, so it’s a helpful reference to supplement The AP Stylebook for journalists, too. It’s updated every year, and while there are some conflicts with rules in The AP Stylebook, this is the go-to reference for authors.

Author Byline: Jacob Smith is a teacher and freelance writer.  He enjoys writing and is currently involved is a writing project for nanowrimo.

Flint Positive Spotlight: Artist – Percy

Painting and creating art is a way I can express myself; express what I see and feel in the world around me, in an almost universal language. What’s important about my art is not that I express exactly my thoughts to the ‘T’. Sometimes I start out with an idea, and it turns out totally different from what I had in mind. I understand that art can be very subjective at times. It can mean different things to different people, but as long as my art gives people pleasure in any way, be it in an intellectual level or merely pleasing to the eyes, to me this is what makes art fun. Getting close to something that you intend to say through visual poetry, a canvas can speak to a nation. Though I am fairly new to the art world (2 and a half years),finding my way through styles and paint mixture brings me joy. I just want to capture the essence of life and what that entails with my brush, and that is the adventure.

Should YOU Be in the Flint Positive Spotlight?

Ariel Dantzler Loves Keep Your Panties Up and Your Skirt Down!

Ariel Dantzler

On a a recent trip to the library your book caught my eye so I checked it out. I brought it home and it sat in my purse for two two weeks, but once I opened it I couldn’t put it down! I especially love the Elderly and Edible story. Definitely a book to purchase. My daughter is 8 but once she’s older I would definitely like her to read it and understand that STDs have no face. Just wanted to say, love the book!

Get your copy of Keep Your Panties Up and Your Skirt Down today!

6 Urban Legends That Are Actually True

Everyone has heard the phrase “truth is stranger than fiction.” The world is a mysterious place that has lost much history and knowledge other than legend and lore. Urban legends are some of stories that get passed down and shared across the country. Many of these stories become viral with the adoption of the internet and social media. Here are 6 urban legends that are actually true.

1) Unorthodox bank robbery with explosives… and pizza


In Summit, NJ an unknown man called in a pizza delivery to a deserted area. The unfortunate driver was strapped with an explosive around his neck by the man who ordered the pizza as a tactic to get the delivery driver to rob a bank. The story doesn’t end well with the man being apprehended by the police. The neck bomb was detonated before a bomb squad was on the scene.

2) Elevator horror story


The scene has been played over a dozen times in horror movies. The poor victim in the movie gets trapped on the elevator when it free falls, ascends to roof without stopping, or moves when someone enters. On August 16, 2003 a doctor named Hitoshi Nikaidoh experienced this gruesome event when he got lodged between the doors as the elevator began to move. The gory details will be spared since the knowledge that this kind of thing could happen and is true is scary enough.

3) The Crazies, the zombies, the toxic woman?

Brendan Lally

Stories of zombies and the zombie apocalypse have become a huge fad in movies, comics, cartoons, and shows. In 1994, a ‘toxic woman’ was one of the closest real life examples of someone infected with a disease like those displayed in the fiction stories. Her body emitted a foul odor that infected 23 people with diseases like hepatitis, pancreatitis, and avascular necrosis. Her autopsy had to be performed by people in full protective hazmat suits to prevent further spreading.

4) Organ Failure


Stories of horrifying torture and cruelty have existed for thousands of years. Some of the worst are those like the concept of repossessing transplanted organs, misuse of the organ donor system, and straight up theft. In 1995 in India, three doctors were arrested for conning people into giving up a kidney by disguising it as a medical exam for a promising job offer.

5) Dumb crime


Bank robbery stories are exciting, thrilling, and exhilarating. At least that is the normal trend. However, there are some pretty hilarious and just idiotic stories of bank robberies that are just as entertaining. One of those is of the man that left a “thank you” note after receiving money from the teller. While it is admirable that the person was kind enough to show appreciation, unfortunately kindness can’t make up for stupidity all the time.

6) Red means stop. Cop or no cop.


Many people have heard the rumor that you can get a ticket for running a red light even a cop is not around because there are cameras that take a picture of your license plate. One California resident found out the hard way that this was true and thought he would fight back with sarcasm. Since he was sent a picture of his license plate with a fine for $45, he sent them a picture of $45. A for effort and humor, but F ultimately considering he later received a picture of hand cuffs in response.

Urban legends make great stories to tell around the fire or while camping and are exciting in the same way that as a roller coaster. You have fun because you get just enough sense of danger but you remain in the safe zone where no harm can come to you. What happens when the Urban Legends are true?

This stranger-than-fiction collection was written by Thorpe Park Breaks – giving you exclusive deals and offers on hotels near thorpe park.


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