Thursday, April 28, 2011


Okay I know this post is not about poverty (once again) but I feel the need to write about this.  So I just finished watching the latest episode of Glee title 'I Was Born This Way' and it was beautiful and awesome.  I don't want to give way the episode but the subject matter was loving everything about yourself including the things you wish with all your might you could change.  The whole episode made me cry and made me remember when I was in high school. 

I would like to think that I had a pretty cool high school experience but like any other teen girl I had my insecurities with my looks and body.  I was an honor grad, on student council, class treasurer, participated in the plays, was a part of the competitive speech team, participated in the plays, and voted by faulty and staff for Outstanding Standing Senior, and voted Most Unique by my class.  But at the same time I was very insecure about size and looks.  I was chubby and dark skin.  When I looked in the mirror, I saw an average girl, nothing special.  Even though I had many friends and have memories from high school that will last me a lifetime, there were many times I went to bed frustrated that I couldn't lose weight.  I felt that if I could lose at least 15 to 20 pounds I could get the guys of my dreams (which I saw on facebook not too long ago and could not for the life of me figure out why I liked him) or maybe I would feel prettier. 

It would take a lot of encouragement  and long conversations from my mother and sister to help me realize that I'm not average....I'm BEAUTIFUL.  It took my sister telling me how we are all made in God's image and if you are calling yourself ugly then you are calling a creation of God's ugly.  This has stuck with me until this very day.  Whenever I would start to tear myself down I would think about what my sister told me.  But just like the sneaky person that the Devil is, he will always try to use your weakness against you to knock you back where you use to be.  So even though I'm in a place where I love myself (both the good and what others might not find attractive), I have been tested.

There is an event in my life that very few people know about me.  At first I was ashamed to tell the story because I felt that it said something bad about me.  But I'm strong enough in myself to tell the story.  When I was in college I went out for a sorority.  I would find out a month later that I did not get it.  It would be the first time that I went out for something school related and did not get it.  I could not understand for the life of me why I did not get it.  I always felt like I was a good asset to any group.  I soon felt myself going back to those feelings of insecurity.  Thinking that maybe I was not pretty enough to be in a sorority.  That maybe if I looked different that would have chose me.  I quickly got rid of those feelings because I knew there was not a thing wrong with me.  I instead turned it around on them.  It was their lost that they could not see how awesome I am.  The love I had for myself help me bounce back for something I realized later that I did not need in the first place. 

I LOVE myself.  If I never lose one pound and even if I am as dark as a chocolate bar, I was born this way and I embrace it, just like everyone should.  What I thought was bad about me actually was what made me unique.  I hope this post reaches someone who really need it and also go look at the latest episode of glee, it will inspire self love also. 

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Every now and then I feel I should take a break about just blogging about poverty.  Even though I do feel it is an important issue and I do continue to keep writing about how I am tackling the issue at my job, I also want to write about lighter things too.  These posts will be called #OffTheRecord and will cover whatever is on my mind.

This #OffTheRecord is about my new apartment and my on and off and on again 5k training.  Some of you might now that I got a new apartment.  I LOVE it.  I am rooming with my bestie again (we roomed together in college for 3 years).  Our apartment is so modern and just has a fresh feel to it.  The neighborhood is nice and its affordable.  But most of all, I love the fact that I am rooming with my bestie again.  It was cool having my own apartment but there were times I would come home and wish someone was there to talk too (and believe we talk about EVERYTHING lol).  I have finally got everything moved in but now it's a matter of unpacking boxes and getting the other boxes thrown away.  We don't have a cable yet so basically I have been either reading or watching DVDs particularly Martin season 3 and 4.  It's nice to come home to a place of your own and relax. Yep, I think I am going to like it.

As I stated before, I have been training (kinda) for the 2011 Women Can Run 5k.  I signed up for it last month and have been able to attend a few of the running clinics.  Because of moving, traveling for work, and other random life mishaps I have not been able to go to all the running clinics.  But I have tried to do some running on my own.  Unfortunately, because of the rain I have not been able to run too much after work but I hope in the next week I can get a couple of practice runs in.  My ultimate goal is to finish the race, rather I run the whole thing, run some walk some, or walk the whole 5k.  I just want to be able to say that I finished a 5k.  I know that this is possible. 

Well, that is all I have for now.  I will keep you posted on more of my apartment, training, and most definitely my work and how we are fighting hunger issues.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


Hi, all!! I know it been a long while but I have been trying to think of a good topic to write about.  I hope this is a good one.  This particular post has been on my mind for awhile.  One thing that irritates me is how people judge and dictate so harshly to those living in low income families.  Those who live middle class or above at some point thought it was their place to tell those who can barely make it how they should live, how they should spend their money, and what they can have and not have.  Now I do not condone living beyond your means.  But let's be honest, those who are considered middle class spend their money on useless things all the time (full price name brand clothes, multiple flat screen TVs throughout the house, breast implants).  Low-income families deserve the pleasures of having things also even if they are not necessary, right?

I'll give you an example.  Some people feel that low-income people should not have cable.  Cable is not a necessity.  You do not need it to eat, to live, for shelter, or to have clothing.  So those who are barely making ends meet certainly should not have it.  Well, those who are low-income do not need alcohol or drugs but they choose to consume them because it eases the stress (if only for a little while) of their problems.  Some people use TV for the same purpose.  I don't know about you but I rather someone who is having financial problems use Full House reruns as a stress reliever than a bottle of Captain Morgan. 

If you have not been keeping up with the latest on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) news, there might be new restrictions on what recipients of SNAP (formerly known as food stamps) can buy.  As of right now they can not buy alcohol, some prepared food items, and items for the house like detergent, toilet paper, paper towels, etc.  But the new restrictions would stop them from purchasing sodas and some high calorie foods.  For those of you that know me know that I studied nutrition in school and so I know it's important to make sure children are getting properly fed.  But why is that low-income families have to stick to a strict diet and those who can buy their own can eat whatever they want.  All people need to eat better, not just those that are low-income.  Sodas, candy bars, and chips are okay if it is in moderation, as with any food.  The problem is not the Snikers or the Doritas, the problem is making them a regular part of your diet.  The kids of low-income families deserve a treat once in awhile too.  Parents (of all incomes) just need to watch how much of these treats their children consume.

People who judge those on Food Stamps (SNAP, I'm using the term Food Stamp because that is what it is most known as) or any other assistance programs really needs to educate themselves first.  A lot of people do not know that Food Stamps is an entitlement program, like social security.  Their tax dollars pay into that program [Food Stamps] just like social security so when they are found eligible, they are entitled to those benefits.  A great deal of the people on Food Stamps work.  Unfortunately, they do not make enough money to buy food and meet other financial obligations.  So they are not just "living off the system" because the Food Stamps program does require them to register for work. 

It burns my blood when I see low-income families getting jumped on so harshly by others.  They are just trying to do the best they can to make their household as close to comfortable as possible.  If that means treating their kids to a candy bar and chips every once in awhile and having cable then so be it.  They have the same right to bring some extra happiness into their homes as anyone else.