Sunday, 27 February 2011

Tag: Your It

High heels or Boots? Boots, never heels

What time did you get up this morning? around 9

What was the last movie you saw at the cinema? The King's Speech

What is your name? Elayne

What is you favorite TV show?  The Cosby Show

What do you usually have for breakfast?  Yogurt and fruit 

What is your middle name? don't have one

What food do you dislike? Liver. Beets

What is your favorite CD at the moment? Basic Hebrew Prayers

Favorite clothing? Black yoga pants

Anywhere in the world on vacation? The Beach

Are you an organized person? Yes

Where will you retire to? Israel

What was your most recent memorable birthday? I rather not answer

What are you going to do after you finish this? Nap time.

What is your Birthstone? Pearl

Person you expect to publish this first? I don't know

When is your birthday? June

Are you a morning person or a night person? Night

What is your shoe size?  10

Do you own any pets? Not yet

Any news you would like to share? Looking for a house

When you were little what did you want to be when you grew up? Me

What is your favorite flower? White rose

What is a day on the calender you are looking forward to? April 15th, hubby's birthday

If you were a crayon what color would you be? Purple

How is the weather right now? sunny and a little chilly

Last person you spoke to on the phone? Mummie

Favorite drink? Coke

Favorite Restaurant? Azar's

Hair color? Brown

What was your favorite toy as a child? Dolla

Summer or Winter? Summer

Choclate or vanilla? Chocolate

Coffee or Tea? Coffee

Wish you were still young? To be that stupid again? Oh please!

Do you want your friends to publish this? Sure

When was the last time you cried? This morning: hubby said something sweet

What is under your bed? Mark's boots

What did you do last night? Prepare for Hebrew class

What are you afraid of? mice, snakes

Salty or Sweet? both,

Best Quality you have? Listening ear

Favorite day of the week? Friday.

Ms. Bassett

Boker Tov:
I confess tho the fact I am not much of a Movie goer.
I love a good story, good acting. I love a movie that takes me to another place, another time and I even learn something.
Which is why movies about firefighters with bad marriages, football, war, fifty ways to cheat on your spouse, and how a social network got started isn't something I would be interested in. How a prince who wasn't born to be king had to not only step up to the job when his nation needed him and work on overcoming his stutter does.
A movie about four poor women who think robbing a bank is the way to get out of poverty sends a horriable message. A woman who finds her voice through song and breaks from the chains of abuse, is the back bone of a family of enterianers or the heart and inner strength of a religious leader, speaks volumes and inspires us all.
When I think of such a woman, I think of Angela Bassett.
Without a doubt, Ms. Bassett is one of my favorite actresses.
I remember the first movie I saw her in, 1992'  Miniseries, The Jacksons An American Family. Ms Basset protray Katherine Jackson. And I shall be honest; the only one that made the series worth watching was Ms. Bassett's bringing Mrs. Jackson's character come to life. Later that year,  Ms.Bassett was cast as Tina Turner  in the movie What's Love Got to Do With it, based on the true life story of Ms Turner. Ms Bassett won a Golden Globe award in 1993, becoming the first black actor or actress to win the award. She also earned an Academy Award nomination for her portrayal of  Ms.Turner. And frankly, for that powerful portrayal, Ms. Bassett should have won that award as well. Once again, we got to know a woman who suffereed much; her pain was our pain, her victory was our victory. Her voice, our voice. Many a bused woman not only saw themselved, but knew now there was a way out.
I never saw the movie, Waiting to Exhale,  based on the book by  Terry McMillan but I have seen the scene when as Bernadine Harris, her husband  tells her he is leaving her for another woman. In the anger of a betrayed wife and in revenge she set fire to his entire wardrobe and vehicle, then sold what was left for one dollar. Like the other three women in the movie, Bernadine works through her pain and finds herself.

Cofession: I did see How Stella Got Her Grove Back. Mainly to see Ms Bassett. This time the story was a about a much older woman loving a younger man and the problems that arise. But the sub-story was a woman who had it all and how she lost it and found herself. But it didn't end there. How Stella found herself and her love for the younger man is resolved teaches how to push through to find the answers. It is just a pity that the reat story about M.s McMillan didn't play out as well, but Ms. McMillan's story is also an inspiring story.
 But my favorite role, her portrayial of Betty Shabazz, wife Malcolm X in the movie Malcolm X, for which Ms. Bassett earned an  Image Award.
A private woman, she is married to a fellow actor and mother to a son and daughter.
I am looking forward to the next Angela Bassett: maybe about a black woman rabbi?

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Mother to Son

I remember in Jr. High School, we to learn this poem. Recent events in the news has reminded of Langston Hughes' Mother to Son.
For my forefathers and mothers, life was hard, but they pressed on. They didn't get bitter because of thier struggles; it made their few victories sweeter:

Well, son, I'll tell you:

Life for me ain't been no crystal stair.

It's had tacks in it,

And splinters,

And boards torn up,

And places with no carpet on the floor --


But all the time

I'se been a-climbin' on,

And reachin' landin's,

And turnin' corners,

And sometimes goin' in the dark

Where there ain't been no light.

So boy, don't you turn back.

Don't you set down on the steps

'Cause you finds it's kinder hard.

Don't you fall now --

For I'se still goin', honey,

I'se still climbin',

And life for me ain't been no crystal stair.

Monday, 21 February 2011

The Blessing Dinner

Boker Tov
(Good Morning)
So yesterday was a nicel aid back day.
I didn't make the streak as planned: Mark brought home chicken, so we shall have the streak this evening.
It was early evening. I washed and did my hair and was about to dress in my hoodie footie, settling in for the evening when the phone rang.
It was our new rabbi, Howard.
"Hi Mark, are you guys still coming?"
"Yeah, coming where?"
That's when I remembered and screamed "THE BLESSING DINNER!"

The congregation had decided to wait until we had returned from our get away to hold the dinner, since it was at the Blessing Dinner Mark asked me to be his wife.
We were told the dinner would not be the same without us.
So, we quickly got dress, made a quick dish of hummus, olives and flatbread and by the grace of G-d, made their to Carl's; late and safe.
It was a wonderful evening. Each husband giving their wives roses and in two cases, the fathers gave their daughters a tulip. Each husband shared their heart, declaring that special love they have for their wives.
Carl, as always, sang to his beloved. This night he sang "I Saw Your Face." and every husband sang along. Son David held up the paper that had the words so Carl could sing as he played. I could have kicked myself for forgetting the video cameria.
Our teenagers also had a blast, watching the love their parnets had for one another, seeing what healthly relationships look like. That dispite we see in the media today that love grows, deeper, richer and more passionate with time.
We call it the Blessing Dinner, because it is the night the men in our fellowship chose as a group to bless their wives.
But I can honestly say, in our fellowship, it isn't just one night a year.
As we drove home, we talked over the evening, still giggling over our late arrival.
Mark said the following: "They love us so much. This group showers us with love."
How true. This group waited until we arrived home to have this celebration in the first place. For them to call and make sure we were coming, holding a special place at the table for us.
I are truly blessed to have these people in our lives.
It was truly, a blessing dinner.

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Love in Williamsburge Part Five: The Reel World

As Friday morning dawned, either Mark nor I wanted to get out of the bed.
Not because it was so comfortable (it was) but because we had to get up, pack and return to the Real World.
We joked about the fact this was the third time we were given the same room. How everyone here at the Holiday Day Inn knows us by name, rolls out the red carpit. Even the Chief came to our table our last night and thanked us for coming, that it is always a pleasure to serve us.
Well, the manger and his staff of the Holiday Day Inn always go out of thier way to make our stay a joy.
There are times the room feels like a second home.
So back to the Real we go.
The weather was awesome, in the 70s. We talked about the week, how much fun we had. How much fun we have together.
It was then that I realize we were're returning to the Real World.
We are The Reel World. We have created our own life, our space. Our own traditions. Until G-d blesses our home with a child, and even then, we will still be hanging out together, enjoying each. We don't go to romanctic places. We 'make' romantic places and moments. We don't go looking for adventure; it awaits us where ever we go.
What is the real world? It is what you and your family create.
Our "Reel World" is our home, our new shul, the delight we take in our friends.
It isn't a job or a career. It isn't the modern culture around us.
The Real World is Shabbat, that taste of heaven we celebrate each week. The Real World is when The Torah is read in our hearing, when we open the scared text and read it ourselves. It is holding a baby or being kissed by a child. It is the hug of an aging mother or the toss of your hair by your father. It is the sister of your sister and the acceptance of a brother who respects your choices.
The Real World is the World that we who love and belong to The Holy One shall enter into one day.
It isn't without sorrow or pain or even drama. It is those things that make us stronger and draws us closer to those we love, to G-d.
So I am now back in the Reel World, defrozening a streak while I work on this entry.
We watched a program today about Yonah and it was full of challenges.
So we shall chew the lesson over a supper of streak, mash pototoes and string beans.
Blessings to you all :)

Friday, 18 February 2011

Love in Williamsburge; Part Four-Good Times

One of the places Mark and I love to visit while in Williamsburg is Yankee Candle.
If your ever in Williamsburg, Va, you have got to stop by Yankee Candle.
Mark quickly made friends with two of the Greeters.
These two are standing gurad at the Bear Making Factory.
Getting ready for the wearing of the Green. We brought a few of the Shammock Candles as gifts.

And at the friendly Toy Castle, Mark found a few more friends.....

Lots of pink and red goodies. This is where I brought many of Mark's gifts.....
Including this candle.....
You always recieve a warm welcome here, the salespeople not only so helpful, but actually seem to enjoy their work. And if there is a candle you can't find, this is the place to find them.

Madame CJ Walker; Part Two

We just arrived home and I found the following message concerning the post I wrote about Madame C.J Walker.
I for one wasn't aware that the company Madame Walker began is still in busniess and will be looking into obtaining the hair oils myself. With my new short do (another story) I could use all the help I can get:

From angierandolph said...

I just wanted to inform you and your readers of this very important fact – Madame C.J. Walker’s historic company still exists today and has never stopped manufacturing all of the original hair oils! Please visit our website at to view and purchase the full product line. The website also contains valuable information about Raymond Randolph’s purchase of the original Madame C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company in 1985 from the Walker Trustees in Indianapolis, Indiana and how his family continues to keep Madame Walker’s “true” legacy alive. Due to our ownership of Madame’s historic company and the historical documents and memorabilia of the company, the Randolph Family can provide the most detailed and historically sound information about Madame C.J. Walker and her company by calling toll free, 866-552-2838 or going to the contact us page of our website.
Angela Randolph

Thank you Ms. Angela for stopping by and adding to my blog. You shall be hearing from me :)

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Love in Williamsburge; Part Three- And Then There are Strawberries.

So yesterday morning dawned bright with a chill in the air.
Mark love is it; after all it's still winter.
It's cold.
So while we are enjoying breakfast, the phone rings.
I don't recall our hotel phone ever ringing so much.
Mrs. R, there is a package downstairs for you. Would you like me to bring it up?"
Ok, Major R strikes again.
"Who me?" Mark tried to look surprise. It didn't work.
So, the desk sends up the box....
Hmmm, looks yummy.
Nice box....
Huge, chocolate dipped strawberries.... Mark says the expression on my face says it all.

Love in Williamsburge; Part Two. And Mark?

Boker Tov:
So you got all these wonderful gifts. That's so sweet and loving of your husband. But what did he get?
Glad you ask.
Whether you call this time St. Valentine's Day, Lover's Day, Blessing Day (as we do in our home) I believe it should be a day showing love to EACH OTHER.
Yes, it is the  Day for wooing the lady you love in hopes of winning her hand and heart. But what about showing your man some love too?

So, when we talked about going away for the week, I paid for the hotel room.
And I am just as sneaky as Mark (wink)
I put the vase of red roses next to our bed, along with two tall wine glasses and a bottle of white wine, The Governor's Special, bottled right here in Williamsburg Winey.
So later Monday evening, after Supper, Mark found this when he entered our room....

Mark loves Curious George, so every celebration has to include dear old George.

I am PEAnuts for you.

Aren't we cute?

Passion Cookie :)
Candy Hearts; Black Cherry, Vanilla Cupcake, smells yummy.
A little eye candy...

Mark said he adored his gifts....and I'm not finished.

Love in Williamsburge: Part One

Boker Tov:
Mark had to attend a Job Fair today, so for the most part, I have the day here to myself here in Williamsbuge. It looks pretty so I might go for a walk.
But I miss my beloved.
We have one more day here, so I am catching up on some blogging.

Mark and I arrived here in Williamsburge Sunday evening, after Hebrew class and dropping off my laptop.
Again. That's another story.
We went to supper and then settled in for the evening.
We talked about the evening that we were engaged, how we both felt when we returned to our respected homes.
Mark told me that he had some many emotions; what had I done???? happy; I really do love her. She said yes.
Me: what have I done?????? happy; I really do love him. He really asked me to marry him.
How happy we both were the following days, but knew that there was a dark cloud over our heads.
Not everyone would be happy to hear we were engaged.

Monday dawned nice an bright. The weather warm.
There was a call from the front desk. Mark got and told Jeff that he was coming down anyway.
Mark said he was going down to bring me breakfast and there was a package downstairs.
So about twenty minutes later, Mark returned with a box only. Room service was bringing the morning meal.
He handed the box with a boyish smile.
Seems Major Reel had my Valentine's gift delievered to the hotel.
Now what could this be?
Well, my beloved decided to do a little shopping, via Pajama Gram. The little blue package is bath petals to soften my bath water.
The roses are rose scented soaps.... The right is a nasty nightie....and we shall leave it there....
And the pink in the bottom is a Hoodie Footie. A Pink Furry, Fuzzy, Cozy, Hoodie Footie. To be honest, I did drop a few hints that this is what I wanted.

Mark had my nickname stitched in.

I love the Footies and if your feet get too warm, you can remove them.

I had just gotten settled into my new PJ's when there was a knock at the door. Breakfast had arrived. And so had another box.
Now this green box has appeared at my door for almost six years, so I knew what this was....

And I wasn't disappointed.....
Mark went out to pick up my medication for me, insisting I stay here at the hotel. A few hours later, I found out why...
Carolina CupCakes. The CupCakes in Hamption Roads.
Looks I am going to be doing a lot of walking.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

I Still Have the Rose

On Feburay 12th, 2005, I recieved my first rose from Mark.
It was at the Blessing dinner our former synagouge held.
Mark had been wrestling between his love for me and what others thought about our relationship, whether or not to listen to his heart,
 Finally, when he stood to share how he felt about me, the words of love just flowed out; he asked me to marry me. And he was only person in the room that didn't realize what he had done.
He brought me home, kissed me on the forehead and headed home. He was still in school and had finals that week. I placed my rose in a vase, called my mother to tell her the news and then went to bed.
A few days later, my mother suggested I press the rose in our family bible.
That was six years ago.
The Bible's binding is now broked and I have to have it fixed, but I still have the rose. Yes, it is pressed and dry, has to be handled carefully, but it reminds me of the night Mark not only listened to his heart, but placed it in my hand.

Mummie Jordan's 77th Birthday

Yesterday was my mother's 77th birthday.
It was when I was in middle high school that I realize that my mother was born in samr month that we celebrate Black History month.
I think that's fitting.
It was a beautiful Saturday morning. Mark and I invited mummie to join us for service with our new shul. More about that at another time.
Our new synagouge now meets in a sunday school classroom; it's that small. But it is also nice because right now, everyone already knows everyone.
Several of the members were actually in our wedding, so it was nice for her to see them again.
She truly loved the service and wishes to go again for the next service.
After the service, we went to Golden Corral, for both fellowship and to celebrate Mummie's birthday.
What is left of mummie's cake. We don't know what happen, but a corner of the cake got mashed in. later, I placed it on the hood of the car is and it slit and hit the ground. But the cake, like mummie has survivored life's knocks and remains sweet.

Rabbi Howard and his boy. Mark and our rabbi. Howard calls this picture, "Jews From the Hood." Mummie loves it.
Mummie's birthday card.

Me and my mummie. Yeah, I am still a mama's girl. And truly blessed to be known as her daughter.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Madame CJ Walker

The history of black hair and hairstyling of course began in Africa. Before the slave trade began, many African cultures wore notably elaborate hairstyles. This is where twists, braids, and intricately parted styles began. From the minute black people were brought to America, many of these traditions began to die as these proud people -now slaves -were deliberately separated from each other. Because their indigenous styling techniques and products were now out of reach to them, they were forced to use their ingenuity. That involved taming afro-textured hair with animal fat, kerosene, lard, butter - whatever.

In the 1900's, Madame C.J Walker revolutionized the hair straightening market with her "Wonderful Hair Grower." We have come a long way, baby.
You can directly see the influence of our ancestors in our cultural beliefs about hair, and in the various ways we care for our hair today.
Madame C.J Walker can be seen to be an influence for today's entrepreneurs -- Lisa Price of Carol's Daughter, Karen Tappin of Karen's Body Beautiful, Miko and Titi Branch of Miss Jessie's, Mahisha Dellinger of Curls, Shelley Davis of Kinky Curly and Anthony Dickey of Hair Rules come most immediately to mind, but there are so many more men and women of color who have realized the power of the hair products they've whipped up in their kitchens at home. Today black hair is a billion dollar industry, and we've come full circle when it comes to hairstyling. Now there is recognition that we have a choice in how we wear our hair -- whereas in the past so many women and men of color saw straight hair by any means necessary as the only way to get ahead, now it's recognized that you can wear your hair in any style you wish and find success.
What lies in the future for black hair? It is up to us. And only time will tell.

For me, it is the wearing of my hair naturall, braidied. Growing up, mummie would braid our hair during the week,  press it straight for church. In the 60's we went natural, though I didn't handle my new short do well. Mummie warned me once my long hair was cut, it couldn't be glued back.
I didn't listen.
In the 70's I learned how to cornroll my hair and have pretty much kept it in braids, straighting my hair from time.
And Mark like the braids.

Monday, 7 February 2011

Carter G. Woodson: the Father of Black History Month

                                                              Carter G. Woodson

                                      By Korey Bowers Brown
During the dawning decades of the twentieth century, it was commonly presumed that black people had little history besides the subjugation of slavery. Today, it is clear that blacks have significantly impacted the development of the social, political, and economic structures of the United States and the world. Credit for the evolving awareness of the true place of blacks in history can, in large part, be bestowed on one man, Carter G. Woodson. And, his brainchild the Association for the Study of African American

Life and History, Inc. is continuing Woodson’stradition of disseminating information about black
life, history and culture to the global community. Known as the “Father of Black History,” Woodson (1875-1950) was the son of former slaves, and understood how important gaining a proper education is when striving to secure and make the most out of one’s divine right of freedom. Although he did not begin his formal  education until he was 20 years old, his dedication to study enabled him to earn a high school diploma in West Virginia and bachelor and master’s degrees from the University Recognizing the dearth of information on the accomplishments of blacks in 1915, Dr. Woodson founded the Association for the Study of Negro Life and History, now called the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH).

Under Woodson’s pioneering leadership, the Association created research and publication outlets for black scholarswith the establishment of the Journal of Negro History (1916) and the Negro History Bulletin (1937), which garners a popular public appeal. In 1926, Dr. Woodson initiated the celebration of Negro
History Week, which corresponded with the birthdays of Frederick Douglass and Abraham Lincoln. In 1976, this celebration was expanded to include the entire month of February, and today Black History Month garners support throughout the country as people of all ethnic and social backgrounds discuss the black experience. ASALH views the promotion of Black History Month as one of the most important components of advancing Dr. Woodson’s legacy.In honor of all the work that Dr. Carter G. Woodson has done to promote the study of African American History, an ornament of Woodson hangs on the White House's Christmas tree each year.

Friday, 4 February 2011

Teach Our Children Well: Lessons From Ina

Boker Tov:
I was looking over some old pictures this morning, pictures that need to go into an ablum. Old friends, many who have gone to be with The Holy One, blessed be He.
One is my friend Ina Omakwu.
Sadly, Mark never got to meet Ina.
I can still see his smile, hear his laugh.

His wife, Sarah was his queen. Their daughters Blessing and Favor his jewels.
Later, they would adopt son, Worthy.I never heard a joke at the expenese of his wife, children, family, friends, even in-laws.

I remember one day someone asked Ina how many kids he had.
Ina answered: "I have no kids. Kids are the offespring of goats. Sarah and I have two children, not goats."
An overreaction?

No. For Ina showed his children the same respect his father showed him as a child.
In a world where children are concerned a bother, a pain, trouble, when raising children is compared to "herding cats" or "being pecked to death by a duck," it was nice to know a father who, while keeping his humour in the raising of his daughters, he also viewed them, not with the eyes of the world, but from Torah.
And when as parents raise our children with the same view, as imperfect as we are, we can indeed, when we release them into the world, we will truly release blessings. For our children will bless the world with the G-d, Torah and goodness we instilled in them.

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Black History. Our History

It is early evening here.
The hard drive of my HP laptop has gone bad and since it is an older model, the company doesn't cover it. But there is a Geek Squard at our local Best Buy and I should have it back tomorrow.
Each Feburay this blog becomes a history class, covering moments in Black History.
But this year, the past few days I have been thinking, that Black History (Afrrican -American) is really our history. It is American History. Students shouldn't be permitted not to attend classes and/events because their not Black and thus has nothing to do with them.
The Africans brought to these shores, some as servants, others as slaves helped to create and build this nation. They and their seed shed blood, fighting for freedom: this nation's and their own. They builded schools. First for the chidlren of their masters and then for their own.
I look in the mirror and see the faces of those before who came to before me. Both slave and masters, free men, soldiers, sailors, airmen, teachers, pastors, nurses, authors, mothers, fathers.
I realize that this week I am indeed part of something bigger than myself: as a army wife, I stand beside the man who defends the nation. As a woman of colour, I come from a long of stronge, amazing people who help to make this nation the greatest nation in the world.
I am proud to be a hebric, an american and a woman of colour.
I am proud to be a part of our history.