Can I Please Eat In Peace??

Here it is again. The season for more family gatherings and parties. SUMMER. *Sigh* I get so uncomfortable at gatherings. It feels like I can not be myself comfortably. On one hand, you want to socialize with some people, then that feeling of awkwardness takes over because you don't really know how to start a conversation. Small talk is not a favorite for me. Therefore, I know that people think I'm the "stuck up" one at the BBQ because I will quietly get my plate of food and make my way to the other side of the room just to avoid possible conversations heading my way.

As soon as I start eating, here comes the "Why are you eating over here by yourself? Why are you so anti-social?" very loudly, of course (Its usually that one family member you already do not like that much). So, now, not only am I feeling awkward, I'm upset and slightly embarrassed because everyone is looking at who's eating all alone. On this particular day, my boyfriend was there to "save the day" and said to that person, "She's good, let her eat" and touches my shoulder. He gets me and understands my struggle at times with being an introvert.

Honestly, I'm not anti-social, I do like to be around people, but I am selective. I have a handful of friends that I prefer to be around, and that's all I need, but I'm not opposed to making new friends, it just takes a while and I'm picky. My friends know that I value my time and understands what I like and don't like, especially with certain places. There are some places that I just can not handle because I do not like the environment and I will quickly feel uneasy.

  •  Clubs- I thought when I turned 18 years old that clubbing would be a big part of my life and that I was 'supposed' to enjoy them.. WRONG! My first clubbing experience was NOT fun at all. All in that one night, a huge fight broke out that resulted in the police coming in knocking everyone over. All before that happened, I was trying to make my way out because I felt uncomfortable and bothered by all the obnoxious and overly flirty men (Ugh! Give me my space!). It was a good thing I drove my car that night! *TIP* ALWAYS drive your car so you can get out of places you find yourself uncomfortable.
  •  Concerts- Ok, this one is slightly embarrassing. I've been to one concert in my life.. back when I was about 12 years old. Bad, I know! Even then, I just didn't like the crowds, and I could barely hear the music, so it wasn't fun. Trust me, as much as I absolutely love Beyoncé, I just can not handle being around the huge crowd that she brings in. But really, isn't it better to watch the concert on TV where you can actually see her performance, while dancing in some comfy sweats and eating junk food? You agree? No? OK... Sorry Bey (and the B-Hive)!

And because I didn't really like to go to those places, I always got the "Ugh, Toya, why are you so boring? You don't like to do fun things!" So, I'm boring because I don't have the same interest in partying like you?  I hated when that was said to me. It's not like I didn't go to parties, I did, but I never stayed that long because I honestly would rather be at home. Period.

For the beautiful introvert reading this, please know that it is nothing wrong with you. You don't have to love certain situations in order to feel normal. And what the hell is normal anyway? Be your own introverted self and realize that you don't have to act like someone you're not to fit in. Just be you. You like to have fun, but just in a different way. You know what you like and if someone doesn't understand you, that's okay. As long as you feel great about yourself, nothing else matters.

I'm a work in progress, but I'm very proud to be an Introvert.  

Here are some fun Introvert shirts that describe "us" very well! 

Until next time,

Toya

Where is the Love?

Where_is_the_love

***This is a post I did not publish last year for reasons unknown. Maybe it was out fear because this was one of the first blog posts I wrote for my blog and I didn't know how it would be received by others. Looking back, I wish I did publish it. *** 

 

Everyone has seen and heard about the tragedy in Orlando, FL. and my heart hurts for the lost lives and lives affected from this horrible act of terror. I'm originally from Tampa, FL. and just knowing that this event happened in my home state, on a casual night out with friends, is very disturbing and heart breaking. It seriously makes you second guess the everyday places you go with your loved ones. Unfortunately, we live in a world where schools, movie theaters, churches and other very common places are not safe anymore.

I remember when I was an innocent 8 year old, not knowing of any hate in the world. I used to play with my friends: White, Hispanic, really just everyone that would run around with me. We played hide-go-seek, running through the sprinklers on the hot Texas summer days and spending the night at the skating rink for all skate night slumber parties (supervised, of course). Now, I don't think I can see my son doing those same things that I used to do anymore.

I'm paranoid and scared of what someone can do because they hate his skin color or preference in who he loves.

All these mass shootings and still no strict, direct decision on gun control.

Sandy Hook. 20 children aged 6-7, Six Adults trying to save them.

Virginia Tech. 32 people.

Bible Study at Charleston, SC. House of the Lord. 9 people gunned down

And many more other mass shooting.

I pray this never happens again.

Just as I typed that, I remembered, I (and many others) have prayed that this would not happen again and still it does.

What will it take to changes these laws? Is it really about the right to bare arms? Because it violates your right to bare arms? What will it take? Does this tragic event have to happen to your family first before you even consider? Look, no one wants you to give your guns away. That's not the purpose of changing gun laws. We just want tougher laws that can prevent THIS from happening again.

I'm beyond tired of seeing #RIP and #Prayfor"City". Why is it so hard to love and let people love? When has hate helped us with any situation we have in this world?

Where is the love?

Its time to disarm hate.

 

 

 

The 8th Month Struggle.... Am I Ready For This Baby?

I'm tired.

And when I say I'm tired, I mean I don't want to do NOTHING! DON'T ask me to do anything, go anywhere, dress up, be nice...nothing!

I'm in my 8th month of pregnancy and I'm to the point that I want to be done and have this baby TODAY, but I know I'm not even ready for that day to come. I'm so unprepared for her arrival.. I didn't plan a baby shower and I still need some items and I don't even have a name picked out yet!! (I know, don't judge me!) 

This has been a very difficult pregnancy this time around. Physically, I am exhausted everyday. I barely want to get out of bed and the reason why: the night before. I'm adjusting my pillow, tossing and turning, breaking out in sweats, and of course, the late night bathroom sessions... every hour. The struggle is real and all I want is sleep!!

Who am I kidding? My days of sleeping are over!

Mentally, I'm extremely terrified. Having one baby is hard and adding another one in the mix will be scary. Children are expensive and that's my main fear. I don't want to feel stressed out over money and feel like a failure. 

Its funny.. when you're younger and you say how many kids you're going to have (I said I wanted 3) you don't think about the financial side of things... its always about the love you would have for them.  *Sigh* if only that would be the only thing needed to take care of children... life would be great! 

Other Fears I have:

  • My Son Feeling Left Out.

From the moment I found out I was expecting, I felt sadness for him because of not knowing how he will feel seeing another little squirmy human in mommy's arms. Will he become jealous and don't want to be around me? 

  • Postpartum Depression

Its a scary feeling not knowing what's wrong with your emotions. I wanted to be happy but I just couldn't. I didn't want to get up and go anywhere, or barely leave the room. When I had time to actually take a shower (yes, it was days I didn't even want to get up and do that) I would cry while letting the water hit my body and even then I couldn't feel the water.

My body just felt numb to anything.

It was a rough time when I had my son and I'm thankful for my doctor who recognized what was going on. I just hope this time around I don't sink that low emotionally. 

  • Who Am I?

Will I be just a 'Mom" and nothing else?

Will I lose my identity having two children catering to their every need? I don't want to feel invisible to myself and others. I want to have days where I can just be me and do the things I used to do, even before having my son.

  • Finding Time For Myself

 "I can not make time for myself because I'm supposed to give it all to my child." This was my mindset when I first became a mom.  Don't get me wrong, I still struggle with this, but I try to make time for myself. Like right now, my son is sleeping and I'm writing this post, BUT how will it be with two kids?? I know they certainly won't sleep at the same time! 

I'm not Supermom.

I will make mistakes.

I'm certainly not the first person to have more than one child. My parents had 3 of us and we turned out just fine! I will take it one day at a time and that's all I can and will do. 

Until next time, 

Take Care! 

Toya

 

 

Quote Of The Day- Don't Cling To Mistakes

This quote really spoke to me... especially today.

I have been feeling like the situations I'm currently in, I have to stay in because of the amount of time I've put into it.... but why stay feeling miserable? This could be a project, friendship or relationship, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with starting over.

I hope you have a productive and happy day!!

 

Toya

 

 

7 Hours In The Beauty Salon Changed My Life

Photo via Pixabay.com

Photo via Pixabay.com

 The feeling of hesitation always came over me when I had to call for a hair appointment. "Can I go another week without going? Ugh! Of course, I can not wait! This hair looks a mess!" I guess I'm not girly enough, but I've always hated going to the beauty salon because it meant a number of things:

  1. Your stylist has triple booked appointments and your appointment is smack dab in the middle.  You might as well cancel EVERYTHING you may have planned that day.

I remember I had a hair appointment on a Saturday around 5pm, but of course, my hair stylist did not start with me until 7pm.. I should have left, but I was in serious need of a relaxer and I just could not wait another week. Well, my hair was not done until well after midnight.. MIDNIGHT! My appointment was at 5pm! Don't believe me, take a look at my Facebook "On this Day" reminder from 2009:

See what I mean? Talk about UPSET! I was boiling because I had plans at 9pm, but of course, I spent the night at the beauty salon.

     2.  Relaxers began to damage my hair and scalp tremendously.

I started getting relaxers at the age of 9 and I have always hated it. The smell made me slightly sick to my stomach. Without fail, I always had a chemical burn on my scalp. At times when the relaxer was left on a little too long, my scalp would be so tender to the touch that I would have headaches. If I happen to wrap my hair after getting a relaxer when I got home, the next day, my hair would STICK to my scalp where the chemical burn occurred. Horrible and painful experience. 

I decided to wait a little while before I got another relaxer. So, about 3 months later, I found another hairstylist that I thought would take care of my hair because she specialized in "natural relaxers". Let's just say, my hair DID NOT agree and it started to come out. A few years I kept trying to get the right relaxers and treatments until I couldn't take it anymore. I gave it up.  I WAS COMPLETELY DONE WITH RELAXERS...PERIOD! No offense to anyone who gets relaxers, it just didn't work out for me. Sorry.

After researching natural hair care, I came across an Etsy store that specializes in all natural, no chemicals, handmade products for those wanting to explore a safer way of maintaining your hair. I found a store called KJNaturals and I immediately emailed Katrina, the owner. I explained to her that I had been transitioning to natural for about 6 months and  she kindly explained the different products that would help with my transitioning hair and even gave me a free sample after ordering her products! One of the first things I purchased was the Coconut Cream Hair Growth Conditioner.

Some ingredients used with this product: Coconut Cream, Cocoa Butter, Avocado Oil, Argan Oil, JoJoba Oil, Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, Aloe Vera

Some ingredients used with this product: Coconut Cream, Cocoa Butter, Avocado Oil, Argan Oil, JoJoba Oil, Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, Aloe Vera

Whoa! This stuff gave my hair life! No, really, actually LIFE! I applied this to my hair after I shampooed my hair (Shampoo review on a later post, yes I know it's backwards) and left it on for 30 minutes, sat under the dryer and rinsed it out and my hair was manageable and felt moisturized. I honestly have never felt that before with any conditioner.

When my hair was a little more than damp, I applied the Marshmallow "Slip", which is a detangling cream and leave-in conditioner.

I literally ran my fingers through my hair. No tangles! Thank you, Jesus! On the website, there's a variety of different scents for the Marshmallow Slip for you to choose. Lastly, you got to have those edges LAID! That's where the Jamaican Jelly comes in!

I applied this all over my edges and tied my hair in my satin head wrap and called it a night. This stuff is awesome! I woke up to my edges slicked down and wavy! I was sold! I knew I finally found a product that helped with those pesky edges!

So you can imagine after I used these products for the first time, I knew I made the right decision to go natural. I felt better knowing I would never have to smell and suffer from getting relaxers any longer. The road was not easy going from a relaxer to natural. There were plenty of days I just wanted to give up, but I kept envisioning the chemical burns and all those HOURS stuck in a beauty shop, that quickly helped me get through. If you are considering going natural, try it out. Some people love being natural while others tried it and couldn't go through with it.

For me, those 7 hours stuck in the beauty salon changed my life.. for the better.

Ever have a horrible experience at a beauty salon? Let me know! Leave me a comment below.

 

To contact Katrina, go to her shop on Etsy: KJNaturals and leave her a message about any of your hair concerns. She works with all hair types.

Toya

Get To Know Me

Hey!! So, I was recently tagged to participate in the "Get To Know Me" game! I'm excited to give you a little peak into my life! Here we go!

GET TO KNOW ME!!!

Name: LaToya Shanae F.

Twitter Handle: www.twitter.com/hello_toya

Q1. What is your biggest pet peeve? People who smack while eating.. ugh.

Q2. Ever been in love?  Yes

Q3. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 23 and find line 5. What does it read?  "I don't have a damned business card, " she said with contempt. "I'm a cashier at Wal-Mart."

Q4. Sprite or Sierra Mist?  Sprite

Q5: Who is your celebrity crush? Only one?!?! Lawd! Well, I would have to go with Omari Hardwick! I can't wait until Power returns.. I'll have to order my Starz package again! :)

 

Q6. Tea or coffee? I Love my Chai Tea

Q7: Jean or sweatpants? Sweatpants

Q8: Put your music library on shuffle. What’s the first song that comes up? Kanye West "Can't Tell Me Nothing".

Q9. Who was the last person you texted? Lakisha

Q10: Mac or PC? PC

Q11: Shoes, Socks or bare feet? Socks!

Q12: Do you sleep with your closet door open, closed or doesn’t matter? Closed

Q13: Ever ran out of gas? Nope!

Q14: Trix or Lucky Charms? Lucky Charms... I love the marshmellows!

Q15: Do you sing in the car? Horribly, but always!

Q16: What is your Zodiac sign? Pisces

pisces.jpg

 

Q17: Favorite color? Purple

Q18: What quote do you live by? Stars can't shine without darkness

Q19: Do you turn the water off when you brush your teeth? Yes! (Shoot, that water bill ain't no joke!)

Q20: Who are you going to tag to do the questionnaire? Shayla @TheShaylaEM , Tinuke @Tinzrant

Alright, that's all the questions!! This was fun and I can't wait to see others post their answers! If you were tagged by me, go ahead and copy + paste the following questions and answer them in your next post! 

Copy +Paste

Name:

Twitter Handle:

Q1. What is your biggest pet peeve?

Q2. Ever been in love?

Q3. Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 23 and find line 5. What does it read?

Q4. Sprite or Sierra Mist?

Q5: Who is your celebrity crush?

Q6. Tea or coffee?

Q7: Jean or sweatpants?

Q8: Put your music library on shuffle. What’s the first song that comes up?

Q9. Who was the last person you texted?

Q10: Mac or PC?

Q11: Shoes, Socks or bare feet?

Q12: Do you sleep with your closet door open, closed or doesn’t matter?

Q13: Ever ran out of gas?

Q14: Trix or Lucky Charms?

Q15: Do you sing in the car?

Q16: What is your Zodiac sign?

Q17: Favorite color?

Q18: What quote do you live by?

Q19: Do you turn the water off when you brush your teeth?

Q20: Who are you going to tag to do the questionnaire?

Take Care!

Toya

 

 

Natural Hair Youtuber Spotlight: Naptural85

I LOVE NAPTURAL85! My favorite hair crush!! I watched her hair tutorials when I was debating back and forth whether I wanted to become natural and leave the creamy crack (relaxer) alone. One of the major reasons I went natural was because of the chemical burns on my scalp and thinning hair. (You can read that post about my "Lovely 7 hours in the Hair Salon" right here.) My biggest fear about becoming natural was the fact that I thought I had to do the "Big Chop" or cut all my hair off to become natural. While that is a way to start, my immediate thought was, "My head is WAY TOO BIG for short hair!"

So that's when I searched YouTube for some answers and that is when I was introducted to Naptural85 (Whitney White). She posted a video about transitioning from relaxed to natural hair that answered all my questions. 

So far, I have learned so much about what to put in my hair and what not to put in my hair. Being natural is a bit time consuming and can be frustrating, especially in the beginning because you are basically trying new things to see if your hair will react positively or negatively to certain products. There were times where I wanted to just give up and go back to a relaxer, but I knew I would be going back to the same problems I faced while being relaxed.. the chemical burns, thinning/breaking hair and having to get a relaxer every 6-7 weeks.. I couldn't do it. I remained patient with my hair and I started to see results.

curls1.jpg

After seeing my hair's true curl pattern, I could never go back to the "creamy crack". I honestly never thought my hair had this type of curl pattern because I have had a relaxer for so long... all I knew was just straight, "relaxed" hair. I still have a ways to go, but thanks to Whitney and her helpful tutorials and encouragement of going natural, I feel so much better about my decision to keep going. Check out her YouTube Channel, Naptural85 for more of her DIY products and beautiful natural hairstyles!

Take Care.... of your hair!

Toya

HEEEYYY!! Today is MY BIRTHDAY!!

TODAY IS MY BIRTHDAY!!!

Today is the day! My BIRTHDAY! March 9th!

Where did the time go?! It seems like the older you get, the faster time flies by, but yes, today is my birthday!! This birthday, I'm a bit unprepared. Not like I was going to have a party or go on a birthday trip, but I am having a hard time excepting that I am really getting older. Its a little scary but I know its a blessing. There are a few things this birthday has taught me and what I should do before I turn another year older.

   Take more pictures of my family.

And I REALLY love taking pictures, but I have really slacked on taking pictures of my family. I hate to admit, but we don't have a family photo together...AT ALL! Shame on me! I plan on taking pictures, especially of my son and soon to be little girl when she arrives. No excuses!

   Transition out of my current job field

I am over the complaining about how unhappy I am with my job situation. As much as I want to just snap my fingers and be where I want in life, I know I have to be proactive in transitioning away from these type of job positions. I just want to be able to do the work that I love and spend time with my children, but right now, this current job field is preventing me from doing so.

    Take a vacation

This one may be a little difficult, but I am determined to get out of Dallas to have some sort of vacation. I have to admit....  I HAVE NEVER HAD A VACATION! The only time I went out of town was for a funeral, and its never an enjoyable experience. Having a new baby this June may make this one hard to achieve, but whether its just having a stay-cation in a nice hotel for a day or two or having a relaxing time on a beach, a vacation is SOOOOO needed! *Sigh* one day.

There's many more things I will do before my next birthday, but right now, I'm going to enjoy this day and think about how blessed I am right now. I may not be where I want to be, but I will get there.

So tell me.. when is your birthday and what do you plan on doing on your special day?

Take care!

Toya

 

  

 

5 Feelings I Felt When I Found Out I Was Pregnant.. Again!

pregnant announce.jpg

Sooooo... I am pregnant. Just thought I'd say it in the beginning so it wouldn't be any guessing as to why I've neglected my blog. I found out right after my blog post, "Didn't You Just Start Blogging?" Talk about surprised and shocked!! Here are my top 5 feelings I felt when I found out I was pregnant... again.

1.) DENIAL

I just knew the test was wrong. "I must have picked up a faulty test at the dollar store... maybe I should have brought the $16 test from Walgreen's. Those are more reliable. " I actually went and brought one of those EPT test and of course, I got the same results. That didn't stop me from taking more test. I took a total of 6 tests, from different stores and all showed the same thing: PREGNANT.

P.S. The dollar store brand pregnancy tests work very well!

2.) SCARED

You know that feeling when you're on a rollercoaster and it gets to the top and it stops...you hear the clicks, then you suddenly drop going 100+mph? That sinking feeling in your stomach? Yeah, that's what I felt after seeing the results. I have a son who will be turning 2 years old in April and I immediately thought about how he was going to feel. Will he feel left out or jealous seeing another baby in the home? My thoughts ran rapid in my head... how can we afford another baby? It's already tough raising one... now two?? Now, we have to find another place to live to accommodate another little human being. WHOA!

3.) ISOLATION

In my first trimester, I struggled with mixed emotions and kept my feelings to myself. I didn't know how to be excited when I still felt confused about how I was going to tell my family and how they were going to feel. I didn't know if I was going to ever feel excited because I simply didn't have the thoughts of happiness, just the mind set of struggling to take care of another baby.

4.) ANGER

I have to be honest... I was so angry with myself, my child's father... just the whole situation, really. This was a HUGE curveball that turned my life around...again.  I was also angry because I knew I wasn't ready for another child and didn't take the precautions necessary to prevent another pregnancy. You know another thing I was angry about?? My clothes not fitting anymore! I struggled to find clothes my last pregnancy. When I lost all the baby weight, I got into jean sizes that I had not been in since I was in high school! :) AND of course...... No ALCOHOL!!! OH LAWD!! Not that I was a big drinker, but I looooved my Daiquiris and Margaritas.  

5.) HAPPY

After having these emotions, I began to remember how it felt when I was pregnant with my son. All the little kicks, punches and hiccups I felt made me happy all over again. I am lucky. I know a lot of women are not able to have children and I am truly blessed to have this chance at motherhood again.

There are reasons things happen in our lives... maybe we feel as though it happened at the wrong time, or we just don't feel prepared, but things will fall in place the way its supposed to be in due time.

If you have kids or you're expecting right now, what were your feelings about finding out you were pregnant?

Until next time!!

Toya

 

"Didn't You JUST Start Blogging?" Where Have I Been?

I know, I know. Trust me. I'm sorry!

It's been a long time, I shouldn't have left you!!

Sooooo, let me tell you what happened...

I was working at a job (insert eye roll) and they decided that they would go ahead and lay off EVERYBODY! I'm going to be honest with you... I WAS HAPPY!!

No more having to wake up at 5 am to be at work by 7 am. No more 40 minute drives to work and almost an hour coming home. No more stressful situations of people making threats about losing my job if I don't hurry back to my desk because someone saw me walk to the break room... let me talk about this one for a second.

We were expected to be in our desk by 7am with all of our systems up and currently working on a certain file. Okay. What I didn't like is when its frowned upon when I want to get up and go make my tea. I would literally have to wait for an hour before it was "okay" for my "GROWN, 30 something a@* to get out of my seat! We would also have other managers come to the office from corporate and tell the other managers that they felt like firing 20 people on that particular day. Just out of the blue! So YES, I was happy and ready to get away from there!

But that happiness soon turned to fear because I have a little boy to raise and the bills did not care about my situation.

BUT GOD!

Two days before I was let go, I received a call from a recruiter letting me know about a job that is DOWN THE STREET from my home, like literally 6-7 minutes. I set up my interview for the following week and I got the job! And let me tell you: this job compared to my last one.. its like night and day. No strict set time for taking breaks, no threats, no more making me feel stress and on the verge of tears. They want you to succeed! They welcome ideas and make you feel like you're someone special.

So, that's what I've been up to! I'm still in my training phase at work, but I am BACK TO BLOGGING! I missed ya'll!!!

Take care everyone!!

Toya