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Ananda’s #CreativityThursday Adventure: Fashion Field Trip to Macy’s

Photo Credit: Macys.com
Photo Credit: Macys.com

Since it’s Creativity Thursday, I thought I would take a fashion field trip to Macy’s Metro Center this evening to get some creative tips on the five Spring Essentials I need to enhance my lifestylista wardrobe.

Photo Credit: Macys.com
Photo Credit: Macys.com

I am excited about seeing the Spring Fashion Show and meeting Daisy Lewellyn, style expert, author, and TV personality, who will be sharing her spring style tips. Daisy is known as the “Queen of Effortless Chic.” I hope she brings copies of her book, Never Pay Retail Again.

Photo Credit: www.daisylewellyn.com
Photo Credit: http://www.daisylewellyn.com

I’ll be live tweeting during the event. So follow me on Twitter @anandaleeke. I’ll be using the event hashtag #5Essentials and including @Macys and @DaisyLewellyn in my tweets.

PS: I’ll post a recap blog about my Fashion Field Trip to Macy’s in a few days.

DISCLAIMER: I am a member of the Everywhere Society and Everywhere provided me with compensation for this post about the Macy’s event. However, all thoughts and opinions expressed herein are my own.

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Happy Creativity Thursday – 3/28

Photo Credit: www.sawcc.org
Photo Credit: http://www.sawcc.org

Happy Creativity Thursday!

On March 1, I kicked off Women’s History Month with a visit to the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery to see the Be/Longing, exhibition featuring the work of the South Asian Women’s Creative Collection (SAWCC). The Gallery is housed in the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts located in my U Street neighborhood in Washington, DC.

Photo Credit: Smith Center web site - Jaishri Abichandani The Return of Devastasia
Photo Credit: Smith Center web site – Jaishri Abichandani The Return of Devastasia

FIERCE is the best word to describe the Be/Longing exhibition. It is emotional and filled with stories that give voice to the rapture and struggle of fierce identity from the diverse perspectives of South East Asian women. It included the artwork of several powerful women artists: Samira Abbassy, Jaishri Abichandani, Nida Abidi, Amina Ahmed, Shelly Bahl, Marcy Chevali, Ruby Chishti, Chitra Ganesh, Monica Jahan Bose, and Sa’dia Rehman. Click here to learn more.

Did you visit any woman-centered art events during Women’s History Month?

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Happy Internet Geek Tuesday! 3/26

Young and the Restless logo
Young and the Restless logo

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Do you watch television programs online?

Young & the Restless is one of the shows I watch regularly on CBS.com. I’ve been a fan since the early 1970s. My Aunt Paulyne used to watch the show. That’s how I got hooked!

The Internet Geek inside of me really likes that I can tune into the show at anytime during the week. I also like to follow the show on Twitter for updates.

I recently discovered the Y&R Critic Fan blog which offers some interesting perspectives on the characters and storylines. Click here to read the blog.

PS: I started decluttering my home in 2004 and ended up donating my color television. Since then, my Internet connection via my laptop and Netflix keep me in touch with television land. Visits to television-friendly homes owned by family and friends also keep me updated!

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Happy Yoga Monday! 3/25

Happy Yoga Monday!

Have you ever heard of The Yoga Sutras by Patanjali?

Pantanjali was a great sage that lived thousands of years ago. He is responsible for codifying the practice of yoga in The Yoga Sutras. They consist of 196 verses that contain knowledge, instructions, and wisdom that have inspired and informed yoga practitioners for centuries.

The Secret Power of Yoga
The Secret Power of Yoga

The Secret Power of Yoga by Nischala Joy Devi is my favorite interpretation of The Yoga Sutras. Devi offers a heart-centered, intuitive, and feminine perspective. Click here to watch my short video review of her book.

Photo Credit Nischala Joy Devi - http://www.abundantwellbeing.com/
Photo Credit Nischala Joy Devi – http://www.abundantwellbeing.com/

If you want to learn more about Devi, click here to visit her web site. Be sure to check out her amazing blog and follow her on Twitter. Her tweets are filled with yoga wisdom! LIKE her on Facebook too!

OM #YogaMonday OM!

PS: If you would like to read about my yoga journey, check out my memoir That Which Awakens Me on Amazon.com. It is available on Kindle

My debut novel Love’s Troubadours – Karma: Book One features a main character who works as a yoga teacher in Washington, D.C. Click here to visit the Love’s Troubadours’ Pinterest board which contains some great information about the novel. You can purchase it on Amazon.com.

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Happy Creativity Thursday – 3/21

Photo Credit: Art Museum of the Americas’ web site
Photo Credit: Art Museum of the Americas’ web site

Happy Creativity Thursday!

During Social Media Week DC in February, I attended the Hispanic Outreach 2013: How to Reach the Highly Mobile and Social Hispanic session hosted by Latinos in Social Media and Bixal at the Art Museum of the Americas (AMA) of the Organization of American States.

LATISM panel during Social Media Week DC session
LATISM panel during Social Media Week DC session

The session featured some of my favorite digital sisters: Julie Diaz Asper of Social Lens Research, Carla Hamilton Briceno of Bixal, and Jennifer Lubrani of LATISM. See photo above.

Museum of the Americas web site
Museum of the Americas web site

After the session, I visited the AMA’s exhibition, On Common Ground: Dominican Republic & Haiti which featured the works of emerging artists of Hispaniola, the island that these two countries share. I fell in love with the artwork at first glance! It reminded me of my 2011 visit to Haiti with the Heart of Haiti Campaign. Check out some of my favorite paintings from the exhibition below.

Painting from On Common Ground:Dominican Republic and Haiti exhibition
Painting from On Common Ground:
Dominican Republic and Haiti exhibition
Painting from On Common Ground:Dominican Republic and Haiti exhibition
Painting from On Common Ground:
Dominican Republic and Haiti exhibition

When you are in Washington, D.C., be sure to visit AMA, 201 18th Street, NW (by DAR Constitution Hall).

Have you been to a museum lately?

Which one?

What did you like most about your museum visit?

Are you planning to go to a museum this month? Let me know which one.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Happy Internet Geek Tuesday! 3/19

Photo Credit: AlizaSherman.com
Photo Credit: AlizaSherman.com

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Who do you learn from the most online?

Aliza Sherman is one of my greatest digital teachers. Aliza’s specialities include Digital Marketing Strategy, Social Media Engagement, Social Mobile Apps Marketing, Mobile Marketing Integration, QR Code Campaigns, Strategic Content Marketing, Social Network Management, and Crowdsourcing. I think she is a “Digital Diva” pioneer. I learn so much from her weekly e-newsletter that is filled with digital wisdom and treats. You can learn more too if you click here to register for her newsletter.

Aliza Sherman at BlogHer 2010
Aliza Sherman at BlogHer 2010

I admire and appreciate her commitment to making sure women and girls are empowered through technology. In 1995, she made digital “herstory” when she built the first websites for women: Cybergrrl.com, Webgrrls.com, and Femina.com (they preceded Women.com and iVillage.com). I’ve been a fan of hers ever since I discovered her book, cybergrrl! A Woman’s guide to the World Wide Web.

cybergrrl! A Woman's guide to the World Wide Web by Aliza Sherman
cybergrrl! A Woman’s guide to the World Wide Web by Aliza Sherman

In 2009, I met her for the first time at the Blogalicious Weekend Conference in Atlanta. Later that year, I interviewed her on Digital Sisterhood Radio. The next year, I had a chance to reconnect with her at the BlogHer conference in New York City. In 2011, I attended her Mobile Marketing session at Blogalicious in the National Harbor in Maryland. Her presentation was engaging and inspired me to dream about developing a series of content apps to support my books (I’m still dreaming!!!).

Crowdsourcing by Aliza Sherman
Crowdsourcing by Aliza Sherman

Right after Blogalicious, I purchased her book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Crowdsourcing. It convinced me to use a small community of digital sisters to crowdsource logo designs and badges for the Digital Sisterhood Network in 2012. It worked! Click here to see the fantastic badges and logo created by Dariela Cruz.

Social Media Engagement For Dummies byAliza Sherman and , Danielle Smith
Social Media Engagement For Dummies by
Aliza Sherman and , Danielle Smith

This summer, Aliza and her writing partner, Danielle Smith, founder of Danielle Smith Media will release their book, Social Media Engagement For Dummies (For Dummies. To learn more about her, visit www.alizasherman.com and follow her on Twitter @alizasherman.

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Happy Yoga Monday! 3/18

Faith Hunter and Ananda at Embrace Yoga Studio in DC
Faith Hunter and Ananda at Embrace Yoga Studio in DC

Happy Yoga Monday!

Interviewing yoga teachers is one of the things I enjoy doing. It gives me a chance to learn more about their journey and practice. My yoga mentor Faith Hunter, founder of Faith Hunter Yoga and Embrace Yoga Studio, is always fun to chat with. Click here to listen to my 2010 interview with her. You will learn more about Faith and how she inspired me to teach yoga.

Faith Hunter on 2010 cover of Yoga Journal Magazine
Faith Hunter on 2010 cover of Yoga Journal Magazine
Faith Hunter on 2011 cover of Yoga Journal Magazine
Faith Hunter on 2011 cover of Yoga Journal Magazine

Last year, Black Enterprise interviewed Faith about being a yoga entrepreneur. I really appreciated her comments about treating yoga as a business. Her business philosophy is holistic and offers her studio and teachers an opportunity to serve others and earn income with open hearts.

Faith is an amazing writer and podcaster. She has written for Origin (“Sea of Uncertainty” and “For the LOVE of God”) and other publications. Her Faith Hunter All the Way Live Podcast offers free yoga classes. Click here to find a class to take. Her podcasts will rock your yoga world!

OM #YogaMonday OM!

PS: If you would like to read about my yoga journey, check out my memoir, That Which Awakens Me on Amazon.com. It is available on Kindle

My debut novel Love’s Troubadours – Karma: Book One features a main character who works as a yoga teacher in Washington, D.C. Click here to visit the Love’s Troubadours’’ Pinterest board which contains some great information about the novel. You can purchase it on Amazon.com.

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Ananda’s Speaking at 2nd National Summit: Arts, Health and Well-Being Across the Military Continuum in April

Photo Credit: Walter Reed National Military Medical Center web site - http://www.wrnmmc.capmed.mil/SitePages/home.aspx
Photo Credit: Walter Reed National Military Medical Center web site – http://www.wrnmmc.capmed.mil/SitePages/home.aspx

Hi All,

Since it’s Creativity Thursday, I thought I would share my news about speaking at the Second National Summit: Arts, Health and Well-Being Across the Military Continuum on April 10, at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. I will serve as a panelist for the Discussion 2: Re-entry/Reintegration Military Treatment Facilities. My co-panelists are Linda O’Neil, a Smith Center artist, and Tara Tappert, Exhibitions Coordinator at Combat Paper Project and archives and American arts consultant. Ermyn F. King, Creative Arts Program Coordinator at Walter Reed, will serve as a the moderator. During the discussion, I will share my experience of working with wounded warriors, military personnel, and hospital staff as an artist-in-residence for Smith Center for Healing and the Arts.

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Happy Creativity Thursday – 3/14

That Which Awakens Me: Kreative Grooviness by Ananda Leeke
That Which Awakens Me: Kreative Grooviness by Ananda Leeke

Happy Creativity Thursday!

Every person is born with a spark of creativity that can awaken them to an amazing life. Throughout my life’s journey, I have witnessed my spark of creativity expand through the nurturing support of other artists. Today, I am remembering Tasko Bey, an amazing master artist I met while working as an artist-in-residence for Smith Center for Healing and the Arts at Howard University Hospital. When I met Tasko, he was a patient living with cancer and a graduate student in Howard University’s Master of Fine Arts program. Prior to attending Howard, his work was exhibited at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. Our first expressive arts sessions turned into a mini workshop where he served as a teacher and coach. He even gave me homework. For the next two years, he utilized our sessions as teaching moments. In 2005, he urged me to pick up a pencil and draw and use a paint brush to paint my first series of paintings. He showed me how to tap into my intuition for creative guidance and encouraged me to experiment with watercolor, gouache, and acrylic painting.

Photo Credit: http://columbus.utrechtblog.com/2012/03/
Photo Credit: http://columbus.utrechtblog.com/2012/03/

I fell in love with acrylic paints. As a result, I created a series of paintings that I later used to illustrate my book covers for Love’s Troubadours – Karma: Book One and That Which Awakens Me: A Creative Woman’s Poetical Memoir of Self-Discovery. One of my favorite paintings from this series is “That Which Awakens Me: Kreative Grooviness.” See photo above. It hangs in my sunny yellow kitchen and reminds me of Tasko and his passionate love of art. Click here to watch a video about the painting (starts with an introduction to another painting and some of my collages) and my art studio. Enjoy!

Do you draw or paint?

Who or what inspired you to begin drawing or painting?

What do you like to draw or paint?

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Happy Internet Geek Tuesday – Woman-Centered and Created Webisodes & Web Stations – 3/12

RoomieLoverFriends webisode created by Dennis Dortch and Numa Perrier
RoomieLoverFriends webisode created by Dennis Dortch and Numa Perrier

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

I LOVE WATCHING WEBISODES!!!!!!

Last year, I fell in love with Black & Sexy TV’s Roomieloverfriends webisode series created by Numa Perrier and Dennis Dortch. Issa Rae is serving as the executive producer. The actors are Shayla Hale and Andra Fuller.

Roomieloverfriends photo of characters Tomiko and Jay
Roomieloverfriends photo of characters Tomiko and Jay

Roomieloverfriends tells the story of two roommates, Tomiko, a twentysomething woman, and Jay, a twentysomething man. They end up sleeping together which complicates their relationship and dating experiences. The storylines are Love Jones juicy! Click here to watch Season One.

FYI: The Black & Sexy TV team used indiegogo as a crowdfunding tool to raise money over $16,000 to develop Season Two.

I am also a HUGE fan of web-based programming created by and about women. Since it’s National Women’s History Month, I have included a list of some of my favorite webisodes, web-based programs, and web destinations/stations. Please share your favorites in the comment section below.

My Favorites (not all are mentioned)

  • Afro City TV webisode series by Rhonda Ray and Lobace Stoll
  • AHSHE webisode series (season 1 and 2 — won the 2012 LA Web Festival’s award for Outstanding Achievement in the Soap Opera Category) by Toni Odom (my Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority sister!!!!)
  • Bestsellers dramedy webisode series by Susan Miller (series completed)
  • Between Women dramedy webisode series by Michelle A. Daniel (season 1 completed and catch season 2 beginning March 12)
  • Blind Date comedy webisode series by Melanie Hamilton (series completed)Celeste Bright drama webisode series by Sonya Steele (series completed)
  • Chic Rebellion TV (web TV network that develops, produces, distributes and syndicates original web series programming for women of color) by Elayne Fluker
  • Digital Chick TV (web community created to connect women to online programming that also provides original programming and information on the women within the digital industry) by Daryn Strauss
  • Downsized comedy webisode series (season 1 and 2 completed) by Daryn Strauss
  • Downtown Girls comedy webisode series by Emebeit Beyene, Crystal Boyd, Chivonne Michelle and Chandra Russell (visit the web site too! — currently showing new episodes and using indiegogo to raise funds)
  • Everything’s Coming Up Ro-ses comedy webisode series by Roetta Collins 
  • Friday Girl TV (web station) by Ashia Sims and Sabrina Harvey
  • Good People in Love drama webisode series by Tina Cesa Ward (series completed)
  • HELLO CUPID comedy webisode series by Ashley Blaine Featherson and Lena Waithe (currently airs new episodes on Black & Sexy TV)
  • Jenifer Lewis and Shangela comedy webisode series produced by Jenifer Lewis with The Collaboration Factory
  • Kindred drama webisode series by Jessica Hartley, Maureen Aladin, and Ella Turenne (series completed)
  • milk & honey drama webisode series by Dana Gills, Asha Kamali
    May and Jeanette McDuffie (series completed)
  • Mingle Media TV, an indie interactive entertainment network by Stephanie Piche (The network broadcasts celebrity interviews and reviews, lifestyle and indie live stream, produced and scripted web TV series entertainment programming.)
  • The Couple comedy webisode series (season 1 completed and season 2 just started again) by Jeanine Daniels, Dennis Dortch, and Numa Perrier of Black & Sexy TV
  • The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl comedy webisode series (season 1 and 2 completed) by Issa Rae
  • The Power Object comedy webisode series by Claire-Dee Lim (series completed)
  • The Real Girls Guide to Everything Else comedy webisode series by Carmen Elena Mitchell (season 1 completed — Check out the blog too! In 2010, the series won the Audience Choice Award from the HollyShorts Film Festival and actress Robin Dalea was also recognized at the L.A. Web Festival as the best lead actress in a comedy.)
  • The Slutty Years comedy webisode series by Amy Aniobi (currently airs new episodes)
  • Tickles TV (web destination/station with original programming) by Haj (my favorite is a series of videos featuring Funnel Cake Flowers, the Urban Chameleon news reporter)
  • Unwritten Rules comedy webisode series by Kim Williams (season 1 complete and gearing up for season 2)
  • WIGS YouTube Channel (original series, short films, and documentaries starring female leads and often written by women; One of my favorite series, BLUE with actress Julia Stiles begins its second season with 26 episodes on March 15)

Thanks for stopping by!