Friday, February 23, 2007

DFW Sisterlocks Gathering was Grand!

Thank you to all who attended the gathering. We had soooo much fun! It was a blessed time together that came and went so fast!

The collages are of me, the Silver Fox and Naijean's locks from the front and back. Beautiful!!

Please vist my MJS Productions Fotki Album to view 175 wonderful pictures!

Video coming soon! So much to little time!
See ya'll next month in Dallas for the luncheon!


Monday, February 12, 2007

DFW Gathering is Next Sunday- RSVP Please!!

I wanted to send a reminder about the DFW Gathering that will be in Waco, Tx next Sunday, February 18th from 2-5pm. Here's the Google Map of Beatnix Coffeehouse.

The Sisterlock Gatherings actually have more than Sisterlocked women who attend. It's all about embracing that natural beauty, baby! We encourage anyone to come and fellowship, be you SL'd locked, nappy, pressed, twa, it doesn't matter. We will have a great time next Sunday and those of you who are regulars, get ready to meet some new faces coming from Austin, Waco and the DFW area!!!

With that being said, I had the pleasure of meeting two new women at our last gathering who've been locked for a while and I accidently left them off the list for the video testimony debut. I must have gone video crazy that day!!!

The first is Sue, who has traditional locs. Here's Sue's Testimony here.

The next lady whom I wanted to share her testimony is Pat. She's been locked for a good minute (over six years!) and she started by way of palm rolling. Here's Pat's Testimony.

Enjoy their testimonies!!

Sunday, February 04, 2007

I've been tagged!

OK, Tanya was kind enough to tag me with a request of 5 things you may not know about me, so here goes:

  1. 2009 will mark my 20th High School Reunion! I was very active in school and was not only our Senior Class President, but also the first Mascot of our consolidated schools. In 1987 three schools consolidated into one: Richfield Rams, Waco High Tigers and Jefferson Moore Lions. The new school would be on the campus of Richfield, the new name would be "Waco High", and the mascot from my previous school (J-Moore) would now be the Lion. So I was the mascot for two years and to this day many folks remember me as being the mascot but forget I was Senior class President.
  2. I owned a miniature Dachshund named Sweet Pea back in 2003. She was the love of my life. Unfortunately she had an accidental death after having her only 5 months at 9 months. I was devastated. January 12th would have been her 4th birthday. I miss my Tuney.
  3. I spent my last 6 hours of obtaining my bachelor's degree from Southwest Texas State in Puerto Rico at The University of Puerto Rico the summer of 94'. It was the best class/vacation/graduation present anyone could ask for. My minor was in Spanish and I was determined to grasp the language. I spent a month there and it was fabulous! We had class Monday through Friday from 8am-5pm and took an excursion on the island on Wednesdays. We had the weekends off, so that's why I called it a "vacation". I plan on going back...real soon.
  4. I absolutely ahbor/detest/despise receiving forwards in my inbox. Especially silly hoaxes and false forwards that have gone unchecked by Snopes. Those irk me the most! I love Jesus and do not have to email 10 people to prove it! Ugh!!!!!! Check out a website who agrees with me here. I have no problem telling people I have an "anti-forward" email inbox/address.
  5. I've been taking pictures since I was 12 years old in the sixth grade! So I guess you can say I've had a 24 year career as an amateur photographer. I've also been writing/journaling for about the same time. I started with my lil' diary documenting all that was going on in my world starting in 3rd grade, I believe. Now it's time to put my passions to work for me.

Who's next? Jamlock, Katika, and Lock Venture.

Are You New To The Natural Hair Blogging Community?

I was asked off-line how to "join-in" on the fun from a person who's new to the online blogging community. Less than two years ago, there were only a few folks actively blogging about their natural hair. Now the online blogging community is growing by the day. Do a Sisterlocks Blog Search and see what I mean. Here's my own personal tips for those beginning the blogging journey. Others may have a different opinion:

Invitation? There's no real "invitation" to join in on the online blog community of natural/locked women/men. The Locked Hair Blog Exchange is by invitation if you'd like your locked hair blog in the Exchange, but for all other groups, you sign up and you're in. A lot of Sisterlocked women began their online connection from what I gather, from three main places: The Yahoo Group Lockitup, on Fotki, and the other largest community of natural hair/locked women, Nappturality. The relationships form as you post your questions and give feedback on other's journeys or your own. If you haven't joined these groups, do so ASAP and begin making comments. Spend time reading the archives, for they will provide a lot of answers to questions you have.

Making your blog a place folks want to visit. The online locked hair community wants to see pictures, pictures, pictures. And believe it or not, getting a good look at your hair is more important than seeing your face. Take good shots in good lighting so your hair can be seen. If it's not a good picture, don't waste your time uploading it.

"We be" an educated group of folk. Most of the bloggers are educated and don't enjoy visiting blogs where there's a lot of slang, typos and just plain bad grammar going on. We all have "slang" moments, but when the blog shows no form of intelligence, it may hamper visitors who will return. Although I will say there's a small niche of folk who dig that stuff. Ask yourself, if you'd enjoy reading your posts and looking at your own pictures a week, month, or year from now. That will help you in determining if posting the content or pictures is worth it. I have quite a few "drafted" posts that I didn't want to delete, but didn't feel needed to be public on my blog for whatever reason.

Keeping it current, will keep them coming. Or maybe not. Keeping your blog fairly current helps. When you are new out, don't expect because you keep your blog current that folks should be visiting it or commenting on what you have to say. You may not have readers yet, but don't stop blogging. However, when a blog isn't updated regularly it's a natural progression to stop visiting it. Trust me, I have a few dormant blogs that need major updating, so I know! I don't even visit my own old stale blogs! Ha! But seriously, try and update regularly. So as to not overwhelm you, regularly doesn't mean once a day. Once a week is just fine, and if time is an issue, once a month. Just try and keep it current.

You've found some blogs you like. What do you do next? Comment, Comment, Comment! Don't ask for comments back, but simply comment on what you like and what you're curious about. That's how the ball gets rolling. It lets one know you've been by to check out their blog/album and liked what you saw. Anyone who's interested in you and your journey will naturally visit your blog/album and comment back. Don't be offended if no one comments or if you comment on someone's blog/fotki and he or she don't return the favor. We never know why folks do or don't do the things they do and there's no use in being over sensitive about it or quivering over it. Try not to take offense or over analyze the situation. Just keep visiting blogs you like and comment on what interests you.

To link or not to link? That is the question. Don't worry about asking to "link" someone else's blog to yours. It's a courtesy to ask, but not really necessary. Most bloggers are honored you've linked to their blogs and that keeps them motivated to blog more often. Don't be offended if you link to someone's blog but they don't link yours back. You linked to theirs because you chose to. Give them that same courtesy to make their own decision to link you and if they don't link you, don't trip. Some folks may be too lazy (like me), too busy(like me) or simply choose not to for their own reasons (like Jen-she told me to add that :-)). Some may not want tons of links on their blogs. Some may not know how to link. Some don't want the pressure or bother. Don't lose sleep over it.

Why link? Linking other's blog to yours helps in search engines as well as gives one a quick reference to their blogs of choice. Blog rolling is helpful also because you can put all your favorite blogs in your blogline and update your settings to show only updated posts in the blogs. That's nice and cuts down on wasted time revisiting someone else's blog only to find out they haven't updated it. Bummer. Us avid bloggers/blog readers can be so demanding. :-)

Everything is "self-selecting" and hopefully not guilt filled when it comes to sharing in the online blog community. Folks will comment if they want to and if they choose not to, that's their prerogative. Some online relationships come fast, and others it takes a while. In some cases, no relationship will come no matter how much you want it, and that's ok, too. It's like seeing that person you'd wish would just acknowledge your presence, and ask you to join in their circle, but they never even notice you. It's like that some times. Nothing to lose sleep over. It's called "Life".

The Whole World Can See You. Remember that your blog can be viewed by the entire world so use discretion in what you say and share. Especially personal info, job related stuff, and anything else that can be used against you in a court of law! If you want to be semi-anonymous, use an online name. Some folks only show pictures of their hair, and block their faces out, which is just fine. Employers/Job Recruiters can google you so make sure you are aware of what you say. Unfortunately there are some real mean folks out there and blogging is a very open and vulnerable venue in which a lot of "you" is shared with the masses. Just be aware and careful.

Watch out for Crazies, including yourself.
Unfortunately there will be some bloggers new to the scene who visit other's blogs just to start confusion. I've seen it before and thankfully have experienced it rarely in my blogs. They probably didn't read this blog post or researched on line about how to conduct yourself as a blogger who has blog nettiquite. If you stumble upon a blog that you don't like, do yourself a favor and #1 DO NOT comment on what you don't like, and #2 NEVER visit that blog again. For the most part, the bloggers won't know how you feel, and it's best to just keep it to yourself. Don't go visiting someone's blog to "check" them. Leave them alone. There have been some ugly "cyber cat fights" on line and it's just a shame and a hot mess. If you are a rabble rouser in public, then I'm sure you're gonna start mess on line. Some folks just like drama and have no problem seeking on line. Go back and look at your blog, and if it has more of a negative, complaining, antagonistic spirit about it, you must know that "out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth (blog) speaks". So watch out for Crazies, including yourself.

Maryee's last piece of advice. If you really want to document your journey on line for others to see, do it! If it's with conditions that you must have "relationships"/Comments to keep you motivated in doing it, then you must check your motives. If you want comments, simply invite those who visit your blog to do pressure. One of the craziest things I've done is visit someone's blog and actually comment in my head but find I'm too tired/lazy to sign on to comment. I'm super busy and zip in and zip out without commenting sometimes. I then re-visit their blogs later and could have "sworn" I commented, but I didn't cause I did it in my head and not in their blog. That always weirds me out!

Why blog? Blog because it's therapeutic for you and you want to chart your growth in all areas of your life. Blog because you are a budding writer and want to hone your craft. Blog because you are tapping into your creative juices and getting real good at technology along the way. Blog because you really want to chart your hair journey. Blog because you want to meet some "like-minded" people on line world wide and need the support and inspiration. Blog to make new friends. Blog to let friends and family see your hair growth and pictures. What ever the case, blog because you want to have fun! But remember, blogging takes work and a bit of commitment. The nicest blogs didn't get that way overnight. Those bloggers "added" a new room to their house, called a "blog". And they've been working on it to make it just right to suit their tastes and all who visit their humble abode. Oh yeah, there's also a Myspace community of Sisterlockers and on FaceBook. Let the revolution begin!!!!!!! Happy Blogging!!!

For more tips on blogging for beginners, check out this link.