Chicago Photos



I Feel Pretty

Do you ever have days where you have to remind yourself that you are cute? No really.  I mean I go to the gym three-four-five times a week (let’s just pretend shall we), I eat like a dang rabbit, guzzling water like I’m walking through a desert on top of everything else trying to look like a (Plus Sized) Supermodel!  I am fully aware that I will NEVER look like Jennifer Lopez or Halle Berry, but hey…they don’t seem to be able to keep a man either so there!  Sometimes I go through my Facebook pics and truly take time to notice that I am really cute.

When I saw this prompt, I forget where (I’m sorry), my first and immediate thought was PROM!  Oh my goodness!  Me and my mom searched high and low for a dress before finally going to David’s Bridal.  I had seen this turquoise halter dress with a mermaid skirt and a black design of what looked like Japanese flowers, not a lotus but flowers drawn in the Japanese art form, that wrapped from the front to the back.  Simple and elegant and just a touch of the 1940s.

I knew that my mom wouldn’t let me wear it because she didn’t want me in a halter, but I convinced her to let me try it on just because it was pretty and isn’t that what you are supposed to do when you ar out shopping for prom dresses with your mom?  It was the last of 5 dresses in that store that I was interested in and none of the other’s were speaking to me.  I put on the turquoise dress and stepped out of the fitting room.  I saw the mirror in front of me like it had been the past 4 times and didn’t recognize myself.  I told the girl in the mirror, which I suddenly thought was a different girl that she looked really nice in her dress and looked around for my reflection.

My mother was awe struck.  We had found a dress that looked good on morbidly obese me and OH did I ROCK that dress!  I wanted to show you a pic but I don’t have any saved on my computer so I picked another moment that I was reminded of my beauty.

Legz Galore

This photo was taken April 17, 2011.  at the time I weighed probably about 265lbs.  I got the dress from Forever 21 (in the plus sized department that they were hiding in the basement), you can’t see the shoes but I got them at Payless.  I got this outfit for my birthday (November) but it is the BADDEST club dress I own.  This is my going away party with my sorority sisters.  I would have been heading off to Florida two weeks later.

I was really feeling myself this night because I was out with my sisters, I had drink in hand, and I was about to embark on a new journey.  The reason that I gave everyone for leaving was to go to grad school but that was an excuse.  I just wanted to be out on my own and out of Chicago and out of my mother’s (really it was my aunt’s) house!

The reason I LOVE this photo is obvious.  THOSE GAMS!  I think my legs are my favorite body part.  I want nothing more than to be 80 and still have dancer legs like Chita Rivera, granted my legs are a bit thicker than Madam Chita they are firm and smooth.  My mom says that when I was born I had little bitty legs and she cried because she wanted me to have “big pretty legs”; so she cried and greased and prayed and there they are!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Recessionista Home Makeover: Shoeboxes

Shoes!  All ladies…and many men…love them!  There is one thing that I don’t like and that’s having mix matched shoeboxes sitting on my shelf; I have slight OCD Tendencies.  Since I have all of this time off I cleaned house and found some of the boxes from my work shoes.  I recommissioned them into something more suitable for my needs…a shelf for my photos and a wall file.  I even made a nice little tutorial if you want to try this project.


  • Shoebox
  • Wrapping paper
  • Tape
  • Thumbtacks (or other method of attaching box to a wall)


  1. If the box is one of those new fangled ones that is just one big piece of cardboard with strategic cuts and folds, cut the top off. If you have the easier one just take the top off and toss it to the side.

2014-02-05 15.08.24

2.)  Wrap the box.  However you choose to wrap your box you want to make sure you have the outside and the inside covered.  My method was kinda awkward lol.  So as not to waste the paper covering the bottom (back) of the box, I wrapped around the perimeter of the box.  Then took a piece cut it in half and covered the inside of the box.

2014-02-05 15.31.46

3.) Next decorate your box!  I have some dandelion wall clings that I got from Dollar Tree awhile ago and never used them.  I took a couple and attached the to the side of the box.

2014-02-05 15.33.20

4.) Hang on the wall.  I can do magical things with a thumbtack and a ball of twine.  I used two and it holds up just fine.  TADA!  My pics finally have a home and they don’t have to share with the growing collection of books!

2014-02-05 15.42.41-2

On to project number two the wall file.

1.) Take a box top.  I used the top of the first box.  Wrap it in paper.

2014-02-05 15.54.27

2.) Now attach it to the wall using one thumbtack on each side.  Add some decoration if you like.

2014-02-05 16.06.19-1

I’m looking for some new ways to use shoe boxes since I have a couple more sitting around the apt. How do you use your shoeboxes…besides of course to store your shoes.

Tagged , , , , ,

Ode to Grand Chinese Kitchen

Prompt: If you had to eat the same meal over and over again for the rest of your life, what would it be, and why?

Everybody has the one place that they go to ALL THE TIME.  A place where when the workers hear the bell ring over their front door they say, “Hi!  Welcome to…oh, hey!”

Mine is Grand Chinese Kitchen in the strip mall on Garfield and the Dan Ryan.  When I tell you that I grew up with this place…I mean it is a fixture in my life.  Nothing made me happier than when my grandmother decided that she didn’t want to cook and would call my aunt telling her to pick up Chinese food. When I went away to school, my mother would go and get “Chink Food” (no offence) she would order and Julie would say “Wantons?  The Baby must be home!”

Fast forward to after my “Hama” (grandmother) passed and my aunt finally moved out of the house and we started eating at Yang’s.  Funny story:  Yang’s is right next to the Roosevelt Train Station and  when I was in high school I would see it everyday on the way home.  So when my aunt moved over there I was OVERJOYED!  I was not happy when they wouldn’t hire me for the summer considering that I was there every other Wednesday.

If I had to eat the same meal every day…for the rest of my life…I want what we got when I was a kid: shrimp fried rice, egg roll, BBQ pork, pot stickers, shrimp egg foo young and wontons.  And yes I will pay the extra for hot mustard.  Bon Appetite!

2013-12-10 12.20.27

What about you?  If you had to eat the SAME meal everyday for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Tagged , , , , ,

My America is Beautiful

The Superbowl…  I can’t say much about it, mainly because I don’t watch football; I’m not a fan.  But has there ever been a Superbowl with that PATHETIC of a scoreboard?  Just curious.

What I DO want to talk about is the (apparently) controversial commercial put out by Coca Cola.  I will admit that I don’t drink pop that often for dietary reasons but when I do I usually drink Coke only because it is made in Atlanta.  After watching that commercial and seeing all of the RIDICULOUS and IGNORANT responses to it I want to go out and by several cases and a few shares of stock just to make a point that not all AMERICANS are that stupid.

Let’s start this off with a History Lesson.  Did you know that very few of the people that currently live in America are direct descendants of TRUE NATIVE AMERICANS;  that we are ALL Generational Americans, meaning that their family has been in America for a few Generations.  Granted the Jones family might have been here longer than the Martinez family, your family tree still involves some immigrants…and probably some convicts.  America was utilized as a Penal Colony; meaning that France, Great Britain, and many others were evicting the undesirables to the Americas.  BUT in true American form these immigrants and prisoners decided that the glass was half full and made a new start.

America, I thought, prides itself on being a “Melting Pot of Cultures”.  At least that is what they have been trying to teach me since I was in Kindergarten.  So why not honor and embrace those cultures in singing the #3 Most American Song of America?  I could “validate” the responses if they had sung God Bless America or heaven forbid the National Anthem but…

The funny thing is, I feel like many of these Offended Americans are the same idiots who walk around with a sombrero and a stupid mustache on Cinco de Mayo, do a Pub Crawl on St. Patrick’s Day, flash body parts for some ten cent beads at Mardi Gras, know the number to the Chinese Restaurant and the local Pizza Hut by heart, and think that Tony Montana is one of the coolest people in the world.  And it wasn’t that there were “foreigners” singing, it was the fact that they were singing in a different language!  Sulema Marie posted this…

Epic fail, @CocaCola. My father, and over half my family, emigrated to America and learned to speak ENGLISH!#AmericaIsBeautiful

So, now that you have admitted that you are a Generational American…did you know that twitter is condemning you too?  Because that it was pissed me off.

Allow me to explain myself; for those that don’t know…I’m black.  And according to some of the posts, I am not an American because of this.  That’s funny, because FICA surely takes her American money out of my American check.  I pay my American taxes every year.  And they have attempted to recruit me into the American Army (I wouldn’t have passed the physical  even if I had wanted to do it).  Speaking of the army there were even posts from vets saying that they regretted fighting for a country that would even allow such “blasphemes”.  I don’t even know the words…

At the end of the day, every American is free to their opinion.  Oh the joys of our American First Amendment, huh! This is my opinion, if you haven’t figured it out already:

I am proud to be part of an America that is made up of many different cultures.  To know people with so many different histories, that speak different languages, whose mother’s cook so many different traditional foods.  Where else in the world can you travel several different countries and cultures in ONE CITY!  Chicago has Chinatown, Greektown, Little Italy, Mini-Mexico, and Ukraine Village.  And I am proud to be from a city that represents the cultural quilt that is our beautiful country!  Personally I would be all to happy  if all Americans could get with the program and accept that we are all Americans, whether they chose to hyphenate it to honor their past or leave it in anticipation of their bright future.  Those who can’t accept it should suffer the fate that they wish on the rest of us:  Find some other place where they can live in their selfish and close minded ways in peace.

I applaud Coca Cola for their open mindedness and their acceptance for what America truly is.

Ah la la la la always coca cola #americaisbeautiful
Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

From A Fat Black Girl Who Attempts to Do Yoga

I saw this thing on Facebook earlier this week and I admit I kinda blew it off as a Silly Little White Girl Move and ignored it; because really that’s what you do with ignorant people, you ignore them.  But then it started popping up EVERYWHERE.  Not just the original post, or links to the original post, but commentary and responses to the original post.  So now I feel the need to respond.

Back in Chicago I decided, in a need of finding some happiness, that I would start taking dance classes.  I got a 10 Day pass at Intrigue Dance Studio (I love this studio and will offer it all the free publicity that I can!).  Now I wasn’t always the only black girl, or person for that matter; there were a few others including the instructor.  I was however the biggest and the least trained in the studio.  Nothing brought me more joy than being singled out for doing a good job on a move, getting good height on a leap, or just remembering some of my remedial dance terminology.

Never once did I feel conscientious about being the fat black girl in class.  Not even during the 1 pilates/yoga class I took to use up all my days before the deadline.  Granted I probably looked like an idiot in downward dog, I was just happy that I could touch my toes.  I have given all of this information as a way to prove my ability to speak on the subject manner.

Dear Skinny White Girl,

I’m sorry that you felt SO uncomfortable in your yoga class.  This is supposed to be a time for relaxation and self-awareness and I apologize that my sister in black fatness threw you off your chi.  However bear with me as I attempt to illuminate the situation.

1.) I must ask this question.  Why were you watching her in the first place opposed to focusing on your pranayama?  Considering the fact that she was behind you I doubt that you were able to watch her every move.  You described her as “crouched down on her elbows and knees, head lowered close to the ground, trapped and vulnerable”.  As I remember from my few public yoga classes, as well as the few videos I tried to keep up with, this was the Beginner Safety Pose.  This is where I go when everyone else is doing planks and I’m sweating buckets and can’t hold ALL of my weight on my forearms and toes. So maybe she was just waiting for a point where she felt comfortable participating again.  Perhaps said point did not come or perhaps you missed it.

2.) It had nothing to do with your (or her) color.  When I started reading your post I glanced over the fact that she was black.  I looked at it as an adjective that wasn’t important to understanding the situation.  It may not have had to do with size but lets say that it was. It mattered not if you were Black, White, Asian, Mexican, or a Flying Purple People Eater, you were SKINNY. In the few times I was in yoga/pilates/dance class I admit that my eyes strayed to the smaller girls; and they were ALL smaller than me.  Sometimes I didn’t want to be as small as they were considering that one of them was the size of one of my thighs; other times I was thinking “one day I’m going to be able to wear a ‘tastefully tacky sports bra’ with no fear of jiggle or ridicule!  Today planks, tomorrow high waisted biker shorts!”  Perhaps maybe that  is why she was watching you.  She didn’t mean to offend socially conscience mind she was idolizing you because you, skinny girl of non-descript racial origins standing like a flamingo without falling over, are who with, diligent practice, she can one day emulate.

3.) And I say this with all the love that I can muster for someone that I don’t know…GET OVER YOURSELF!  I mean seriously, you went home and cried because in your head you decided that this poor innocent girl who just wanted to make a change in life was giving you the Death Glare?  Who cares?  If she was congratulate yourself and pack yourself on the back for obtaining a new Hater.  Every woman no matter of her Size, Race, Orientation, or Economic Standing should Strive for Five every month.  And if you felt the urge to purge as one of what sounds like many skinny white girls in your class, how do you think SHE felt after being the only black fat girl who could not get past the WARM-UPs!  I am officially stereotyping you in a COMPLETELY different way now.

What I really wanted to read at the end of your post is that you spoke to the girl and offered to help her.  That you told her stories about YOUR first day in yoga class, recommended a different/easier class or some videos, books, blogs that she could check out to help her feel more comfortable the next time.  I was hoping that you tried to be the “bigger person” (pun intended) and extend an olive branch in a way to be the change that you hoped to see.  Instead you went home and cried, unfortunately not at your own elitist stupidity…

I don’t even know what else to say…


Heavyset Black Girl Who Attempts to Do Yoga

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I fell down…but I’m trying to get up…

So I have been MIA for awhile.  I had this whole plan that I was going to post a video on my birthday and then I decided to wait and post it on New Years and then that didn’t happen and it has been a mess.  Here is the readers digest version:

  1. Issues with the boy (long distance/aggravation) led to…
  2. Break up with the boy
  3. Really wish I could use my fancy $80,000 degree
  4. Job knocked everybody to Part-time (and told me on Christmas Eve)
  5. Stress eating (and occasional drinking) led to weight gain
  6. Constant deadening feeling that I am an absolute failure and should just return home with my tail between my legs

So through all of that, and yes I know that compared to the issues of many others that those are miniscule, I haven’t really felt like blogging.  But I have to find something that makes me happy or else I will go INSANE.  My mind hasn’t been very clear lately, so the creative writing that I normally use to escape into a fantasy world has also not been helping.  And then Once Upon a Time decided to take a THREE MONTH HIATUS! (lol/jk)

So where am I now?  I’m writing!  I’m blogging.  I am surfing Tumblr.  and I am going through Rumbelle withdrawal.  But it all has to get better…i hope

Tagged , , , , , ,

Introducing Bella Biachi and a new 30 Day Challenge

I woke up this morning (with my mind…stayed on Jesus!) with a new motivation.  Well not really; I actually woke up with my mind on the conversation that I didn’t have with the boy, but that just sounds lame and pathetic.  I have been doing Zumba every morning for the past three days.  I decided that I would create a 30 day Zumba Challenge and I can compete it then I will find the money to get that gym membership.

I know what you are thinking…”WAIT BACK UP!  You said that you were afraid to Zumba in your apartment because you were afraid that the man down stairs would come up with his ceiling fan in his hand.”  Yea, well, he will just have to come on up.  This crap with my BF (and portfolio) has made me realize that I am sick of waiting on things to happen so that I can do what I really want.  Let’s take a count shall we…

  1. I can’t join a gym until the season picks up and I can afford it or I find a better job.
  2. I can’t figure out what exactly is going on with my relationship until he is in the same city as me, or stops avoiding my serious questions.
  3. I can’t get a better job until I can come up with $150 to put a portfolio together.
  4. I can’t do Zumba in my second floor apartment until I lose enough weight that the books won’t fall off the shelves and the man down stairs won’t come banging on the door with his ceiling fan in his hand!

SCREW ALL OF THAT!!!  I am known for my ability to make something out of nothing both positively and negative and I am choosing to be positive.  So 30 Day Challenge Beware cause PLANET FITNESS here I come!

Introducing Bella Biachi

Some of you may know that I have several blogs.  One of my main ones besides this is The World According to Bella.  It’s all fashion and celebrity gossip and life commentary.  I post under the monicker of Bella Biachi, my alternate ego. She is also known as “the skinny b!tch trapped inside of me”.  Well Bella has come out to play.  Allow me to introduce her…

2013-09-22 20.15.56My cousin works at a clothing store and they were getting rid of some mannequins so he grabbed one for me.  I have been wanting a dress form for awhile and while this is not actually a dress form, it will serve a purpose.   I have been wanting to start sewing and putting together some real outfits (not just the ones I do on Polyvore) so I am really excited.  Only problem is she is a bit skinnier than me.  I had to pull the dress back in this pic.  Here is the before and.


I still need to do some work on her.  Since I have more butt and an actual waist.  But it serves a purpose for now.  And I can start sewing again!


Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Zumba, Relaxers, and Gym Memberships

Remember a few weeks ago, maybe last, and I was considering getting the Zumba Wii Game.  Well I haven’t gotten it yet but I remembered that you can see a lot of the songs on YouTube so I’ve been doing a few of them just for fun and to assure myself that the books will not fall off of the shelves and the people downstairs won’t come banging on my door with their ceiling fan in their hand.

What usually happens is that I decide I’m just going to try one but then that was easy, so I try another, and then that was fun so I try another, and then I start to sweat.  This is good right? NOT!  I just permed my hair!  Ask any black girl and they will tell you.  A new perm (relaxer) is not to be trifled with.  When I was a kid my aunt took me to get my hair done I came home and decided to do a complete 18 track slide CD in the living room.  I felt good because of all the calories I was sure I had just burned but she was pissed because I just sweat out my $90 Relaxer not even 9 hours later.

I didn’t just stop because of my hair tho.  I was enjoying living the single life and dancing in my underwear…cause I could…and my thighs were starting to shake a bit too much so I was going to stop anyway but the sweat made sure that I did!  I guess I will have to invest in a sweat band.

I’ve been thinking about joining a gym.  I really want to take a Zumba class and a spin class but gym memberships are expensive!  I was looking into the YMCA, I think they might be the most expensive of them all which is just sad!  $175 to join and then $50 a month!  Planet Fitness has that whole “No Judgement Zone” which makes a fat girl like me happy but $50 to join and $20 a month?  L.A. Fitness has “the most classes” but they want $100 to join and $30 a month.  There’s a Gold’s Gym not far from my house and they are open 24 hours which I really like and they seem dedicated to making women feel comfortable.  NOt to mention that they have a plan for people who need to lose 30lbs or more like myself (110 lbs to go!)  I couldn’t find the prices though.  I may try their 7 day free trial thingy though and let know how it works out!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

$150 Healthy Kitchen Spree!

So I made up this reward system where for every 10 pounds I loose I would spend no more than $150 on something.  And then I shot up 10 pounds and haven’t been able to come down since but that’s besides the point.  Well now that I am dedicated to this whole uber-healthy (within reason) cooking kick and counting calories and being really strict with portion control to finally get rid of those darned pounds and get back to actually loosing weight instead of retaining (but not gaining) weight.  My first goal which I guess I will just bump up to sooner, is to revamp my kitchen.  Complete with Mixing Bowls, and digital scales, the whole works!  So here it is, brought to you by Target, $150 Healthy Kitchen Shopping Spree!

Anchor Hocking Oven Basics Bake Set $29.99

Primo Digital Scale $25.99

Squish 6 Quart Plastic Expandable Colander $24.99

OXO SoftWorks POP Container Set $49.99

Lodge Cast Iron Pre-Seasoned Skillet 8 Inch $10.99


Tagged , , , , , ,