0

Happy Creativity Thursday!

alchemical1-smctr

Happy Creativity Thursday!

Each month, I try to participate in an arts-related event in my U Street neighborhood in Washington, D.C.  I usually visit the Joan Hisaoka Healing Arts Gallery at Smith Center for Healing and the Arts. Last month, I  attended the opening reception for the Gallery’s Alchemical Vessels, an exhibition featuring ceramic bowls created by 125 artists.

alchemical10alchemical2alchemical4alchemical8

Each artist made a ceramic bowl that reflected his or her own personal aesthetic and medium. Together, the ceramic bowls  symbolized the importance of creating healing space.

alchemical5

The creation of healing space is a core element of Smith Center’s mission and my intention as a Smith Center artist-in-residence at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Click here to learn more about the exhibition.  If you are in the D.C. area on June 7, plan to attend the artists’ closing reception at 7:00 p.m.

0

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

blogher13icon

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Have you heard of BlogHer?

BlogHer is the largest community of women who blog and a media company that was created by Elisa Camahort Page, Jory des Jardins, and Lisa Stone in 2005.

Photo Credit: BlogHer.com - BlogHer co-founders Lisa Stone, Jory Des Jardins, and Elisa Camahort Page
Photo Credit: BlogHer.com – BlogHer co-founders Lisa Stone, Jory Des Jardins, and Elisa Camahort Page

To date, BlogHer has created opportunities for the 55 million women in its community to gain exposure, education, community, and economic empowerment through its conferences for women in social media, publishing network of 3,000 blogs authored by women, and BlogHer.com, the leading guide to the hottest news and trends among women in social media.

Ananda at BlogHer 2009 luncheon
Ananda at BlogHer 2009 luncheon
BlogHer 2010 - Ananda, Julie Diaz-Asper, Ana Roca Castro, and Sylvia Aguilera
BlogHer 2010 – Ananda, Julie Diaz-Asper, Ana Roca Castro, and Sylvia Aguilera
Vikki Reich, Heather Mann, and Ananda at BlogHer11 session on Peer Mentoring
Vikki Reich, Heather Mann, and Ananda at BlogHer11 session on Peer Mentoring

I joined BlogHer in 2008.  I’ve been fortunate to attend the annual conference in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012. The BlogHer community and conferences have helped me to dream bigger and grow as a person, entrepreneur, speaker, and writer in numerous ways. I believe BlogHer invests deeply in its members which creates a similar investment commitment by its members. Last year, I wrote a conference blog recap that expressed my definition of BlogHer (it is written as an acronym). See below.

BlogHer 2012 Podcasting Panel - Deborah Shane, Ananda, and Jasmin Singer
BlogHer 2012 Podcasting Panel – Deborah Shane, Ananda, and Jasmin Singer
BlogHer 2012 Breakfast with Ananda and Veronica Arrerola
BlogHer 2012 Breakfast with Ananda and Veronica Arrerola

bh12-comeasyouarepartycollage

BlogHer 2012 Blogalicious Brunch
BlogHer 2012 Blogalicious Brunch

B – Building community through meaningful and mindful connections, conversations, collaborative partnerships and projects, and commerce that generates revenue and valued added exchanges for myself and others.

L – Learning and sharing information that helps me and others grow to our fullest potential.

O – Opening my heart to be inspired and energized by the stories I hear from fellow bloggers, keynote speakers, and representatives from brands, companies, organizations, and marketing/PR firms.

G – Giving back to others by sharing what I know and affirming and supporting others’ efforts.

H – Having fun and celebrating digital sisterhood and digital brotherhood bonds with new and old blogging friends.

E – Embracing and valuing the power, presence, and passion of my own voice, creativity, expertise, thought leadership, entrepreneurial efforts, social good causes and campaigns, and definition of success.

R – Remembering that my return on investment (ROI) from my BlogHer community and conference participation is rooted in my attitude, intentions, choices, personal responsibility, and actions.

BlogHer13-150-speaking

BH13_MultiCulti_150x150

This year, I am excited to share I will be speaking about social media leadership and co-hosting the Multi-Culti party with two amazing digital sisters, Pauline Campos and Dwana De La Cerna at the July conference in Chicago.  I hope you will be able to join us at the conference and the Multi-Culti party. Click here to register.

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

Are you headed to the BlogHer conference in Chicago?

What are you looking forward to learning about and receiving from the BlogHer conference?

I am looking forward to connecting with my current network of digital sisters and brothers, meeting new digital sisters and brothers, co-hosting the Multi-Culti party, speaking about social media leadership, attending some of the Style Mini-Con sessions, hearing the Voices of the Year speakers (one of my favorite events), and listening to the keynote addresses by Majora Carter and Sheryl Sandberg.

Hope to see you in Chicago!

0

Happy Yoga Monday! 5/27/13

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

Happy Yoga Monday! Happy Memorial Day!

As a yoga teacher and writer, I enjoy reading yoga blogs and web sites. The Daily Cup of Yoga is one of my favorite yoga web sites to visit. The Daily Cup of Yoga includes tips, tools, wisdom on yoga, books,and technology. The site has several posts about yoga apps you can use with your smartphone. I love how Brian, the founder of The Daily Cup of Yoga, keeps the book section updated with great resources. Like him, I am a yoga book lover! Click here to visit the site.

What is your favorite yoga blog or web site?

OM #YogaMonday OM!

2

Happy Creativity Thursday!

Photo Credit: Leigh Mosley - www.leighmosley.com
Photo Credit: Leigh Mosley – http://www.leighmosley.com

Happy Creativity Thursday!

Writing a book is a journey in itself.  When your write about yourself like I have in my debut novel and creative memoir, you may encounter moments in your writing journey that force you to deal with your fears and past experiences. That’s what has been happening during my Digital Sisterhood memoir book writing process. I have started and stopped many times. I have been overwhelmed and wounded by my own need to control a creative process that requires constant surrender. I have allowed my reaction to the edits I received from my publisher in December to stall my publication process. In short, it has been a creative struggle I often wish I did not have to deal with, but I am hanging with support, positive energy, and love from an amazing team of family, friends, peers, yoga teachers, an acupuncturist, a book editor extraordinaire, a keep it real life coach, and detailed copy editors who keep me on track.

writingthememoir

I have also used inspiring books to strengthen myself from the inside out as I finalize the manuscript. One book that has inspired me greatly is writing teacher Judith Barrington’s Writing the MemoirIn her book, Barrington writes with emotional honesty about the memoir writing journey. It gave me the words I was looking for to describe the bottled up emotions I have been carrying around about my writing fears.  It was liberating to read her guidance on theme selection, voice, tone, form, plot, scene, and character development. She also stressed the value of having a disciplined practice. I enjoyed her references to writings by Alice Walker and Virginia Woolf. After I finished her book, I felt refreshed and ready to pick up my editing pen and complete my Digital Sisterhood book edits. What a blessing!

4

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Myspace-old

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Today, I am remembering the musical discoveries I made while connecting with other music lovers on Myspace in 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009. Yes I said Myspace. I know saying that word is very retro in the social networking world, but I had to say it.

Photo Credit: Ayanna Gregory
Photo Credit: Ayanna Gregory

ayannagregory-now

I miss being on Myspace and learning about amazing indie artists like Ayanna Gregory, a soulful vocalist, songwriter, educator,  and activist, She is also the daughter of Dick Gregory, a comedian, vegetarian, Civil Rights activist, and nutritional consultant.  I used to visit Gregory’s Myspace page to stay updated on her musical career and Beautiful Flower CD concerts. Nowadays, I use Facebook to stay updated.

ayanna-beautifulflower

I would also check out her growing list of friends to see if I could find other indie artists. Most times, I would find several I liked and end up buying their CDs on CDBaby.com (the web site where many indie artists sell their music).

Myspace-2013-Logo

If you had a Myspace account, check out the questions below. Feel free to respond to them in the comment section. If you still use Myspace, please post your page’s link. I’ll visit it in the coming days.

When did you join Myspace?

I joined in 2006.

What made you join?

My cousin and stylist Sharon Malachi told me Myspace was a great way to stay updated about the indie music artists we loved listening to and seeing perform. I also used Myspace to promote and market my debut novel, Love’s Troubadours – Karma: Book One.

What were your favorite Myspace sites to visit?

I loved visiting the sites of Ayanna Gregory, Eric Roberson, Kenny Dust, and HKB FiNNTim’m West, and Fertile Ground.

Did you leave Myspace? When and why?

I stopped using it in 2009 because my community and most of the indie artists I liked moved to Facebook and Twitter. So I followed them.

What social networking sites do you currently participate in?

I am on most of the social networking sites: Instagram, Flickr, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, Vimeo, and YouTube.

What are your favorite social networking sites?

I love Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter.

0

Happy Yoga Monday! 5/20/13

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

Happy Yoga Monday!

One of the things I love to do is watch yoga-inspired films. This year, I fell in love with filmmaker Suzanne Bryant’s YOGA IS documentary. It tells the story of her yoga adventures in India and the power of the practice in her life. The film begins with Bryant sharing how she thought she had it all until her mother died of cancer. As she grieved her mother’s transition, she turned to yoga as a healing tool and was led to India to study Ayurveda and yoga with Indian teachers. Upon her return to the United States, she began to explore what yoga means to people in the West. She used YOGA IS to document her findings. Click here to learn more about Bryant and her amazing journey and film.

What is your favorite yoga-inspired film?

OM #YogaMonday OM!

0

Happy Creativity Thursday!

Happy Creativity Thursday!

I love watching people express themselves through the clothing and accessories they wear. The color combinations, shapes, sizes, and textures are all very exciting to see. Each piece of clothing and accessory has meaning and perhaps a story.

How do you express your creativity through clothing and accessories?

What does your favorite piece of clothing or accessory mean to you?

Does it have a story?

creatthurs1

creatthurs2Today, I expressed my creativity by wearing blue and cranberry red together.  The color blue corresponds to my intention to have a calm and peaceful day.  Cranberry red represents my intention to have a spring easy breezy day of positivity, passionate and playful fun. Click here to read about the meaning of colors better known as Color Psychology. My accessories included a wrap around lapis lazuli necklace (purchased at the Essence Music Festival in 1997), silver bangles from Forever 21 ($4 — purchased a few weeks ago), and a lapis lazuli ring (purchased from a Dupont Circle DC vendor in 2003).

Clothing Details:  My blue blazer is from Dress Barn ($35 with a coupon). My blue t-shirt ($10 weekend sale in April) and cranberry red skinny pants ($40 from Fall 2012 sale) are from Ann Taylor Loft. My comfy Anne Klein black wedge shoes are from Macy’s (30% sale two weeks ago – approximately $45).

0

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

Photo Credit: Leigh Mosley
Photo Credit: Leigh Mosley

Happy Internet Geek Tuesday!

I am passionate about all things tech including learning how to code.  Learning how to code has been on my life’s bucket list since 2011 when I learned about Kimberly Bryant’s Black Girl Code organization and Women Innovate Mobile, read an article about Girl Develop It’s first ladies-only hackathon in Fast Company, and attended web pioneer Aliza Sherman’s session on mobile marketing at the Blogalicious Weekend Conference. As a result, I signed up for Code Academy’s free online coding classes in 2012. Unfortunately, I did not take advantage of the classes. I did, however, stay updated on women’s coding and tech projects, and attended the Women Interactive, a creative technology festival at Spelman College where I learned more about creating mobile applications, games, and webisodes. 

railsgirls-sq

railsgirls

This year, I started subscribing to the RailsGirls DC Twitter account and blog and reading them on a regular basis. That’s how I learned about the June workshop on how to build apps and other programs with Ruby on Rails. I applied to participate and explained how I wanted to create apps to support the Digital Sisterhood Network.  Guess what? My application was approved and I’ll be attending the June. Coding here I come!

What tech tools have you acquired or planning to learn this year?

0

Happy Yoga Monday! – 5/13

Photo Credit: http://womenshealth.gov
Photo Credit: http://womenshealth.gov

Happy Yoga Monday!

In honor of National Women’s Health Week (May 12-18), I am celebrating the many contributions women yoga teachers make to women’s health and wellness. Sariane Leigh, a Washington, D.C.-based yoga teacher, health activist, blogger, writer, and wellness instructor uses her Anacostia Yogi web site, blog, podcasts, classes, and workshops to promote health awareness and yoga for women and individuals recovering from trauma-related experiences such as HIV/AIDS diagnosis, conflicts, natural disasters, poverty, and institutional racism. Leigh’s healing approach marries Hatha and Kemetic yoga principles to the psycho-social healing tradition from African-American women’s spirituality.

Photo Credit: AnacostiaYogi.com
Photo Credit: AnacostiaYogi.com

In October 2012, she wrote a guest blog, “Sisters of the ‘Yogic’ Yam: bell hooks and the Yoga in Self-Recovery” for TheFeministWire.com that discusses her healing approach.  To learn more about her work, visit http://anacostiayogi.com.

Who is your favorite yoga blogger?

OM #YogaMonday OM!

0

Ananda’s Adventures at Macy’s Celebration of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month with Far East Movement

fem-me
Happy Friday! Last night, I attended Macy’s Celebration of Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month with Far East Movement at the Metro Center location in Washington, D.C. The event featured my new favorite hip hop group Far East Movement, a Los Angeles-based group of Asian American men who have created an incredible sound and collection of music.
fem-interview2fem-interview
I really enjoyed listening to their interview about their musical journey. They told stories about staying motivated by their passion and writing music that touches people’s hearts. Their creative energy was so POSITIVE.
fem-perform1
fem-perform2
Their live performance had me dancing nonstop. I got quite a workout. After the concert, I decided to create a Pandora music station and to purchase their CDs on Amazon.com this summer.
fem-hangingwithkim1fem-hangingwithkim2
While I was at the event, I had a chance to hang out with my digital sister Thien Kim and her cool family. We took lots of photos since we had front row standing positions.
fem-inaction
If you are looking for some great music, Be sure to check out Far East Movement. Click here to watch a video of Far East Movement performing “Rocketeer,” my new favorite song for the spring season! Enjoy!fem-me2

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.