Marlo Mondays Divas and Divos and today I’m highlighting you!
This week it’s not about me, it’s about me giving back to those who mean the most to me, my family and of course you guys. Been keeping a low profile lately, but I took time out to have tea this past Sunday with two of my favorite glam-it-up girls who are making moves and off to college! Whoo hoo, get it girls!
Then, I plan to start shopping for back to school clothes and supplies for my nieces and nephews. After that I’ll be able to enjoy the rest of the summer that is flying by don’t you think?
In the spirit of giving, I decided to flip the script a bit today and ask in my Wendy Williams voice, How You Doin?
Talk to me. What do you want to discuss? Give me some hot topics. What’s going on in your fashion world, clothes, interior design, make up, etc.? How do YOU glam it up? I’m dedicating this week’s blog to you, so send me pics of your fashionista selves… You all love how I put it together, now show me your style.
The top 5 pics will be featured on the blog and I’ll post the results tomorrow via blog, twitter and instagram! Don’t disappoint me, the clock starts now…
Marlo Mondays Divas and Divos! What’s good wit ya?
This week I’m sharing my thoughts on the subject of relationships. Why? Because after too many conversations with friends and others who are worried about biological clocks, growing old alone, getting married, etc., I think it’s time we stop letting this pursuit of finding a husband, boyfriend, partner get in the way of being happy in the here and now.
How many of us have bought into the fairytale of “happily ever after?” How many of us believe that if we don’t find a husband we have no future or self-worth? The devil is a liar! I’m not married and the truth is, I’m fine with that. When the right one comes along, I’ll be ready. However, I don’t have to settle for Mr. “Right Now” because I’m nervous that Mr. “Right” won’t ever show up. Don’t believe the hype of Instagram and Facebook! Every smiling couple is not living in romantic bliss. Trust me on that!
Too many of us are beating ourselves up or even worse, compromising our standards because the world says we are incomplete without a husband and kids. Some are making bad decisions, hooking up with “OPP,” (Other People’s Property, (side eye), God will NOT bring you someone else’s husband, even if he says things are not working out!), “BWP,” (Brothers with Potential) or “CBB,” (Cute but Broke!) all in an effort to find a Prince. No, it’s not about the money, although no one wants a broke dude, and working with your man while he is on the come up is ok too, sometimes... But, if you do all the understanding, compromising and giving, you probably have not found the right one. He’s not looking for Mrs. Right, he’s looking for some help! Or worse, to replace his mama for a mama with benefits!
As I get my grown woman on, I’ve found that I love coming home to me. I never lie to myself, cheat, or take me for granted. There is peace of mind in that. Stop worrying about what others think of you. Don’t let their opinions and expectations make a mold for you to fit into and stop apologizing for your flaws. We all have them. The beautiful diva that you think has it all together and is worshipped by all, might have ugly feet and a bad case of chronic halitosis! My point is, no matter how hot you think the next one is, no one is perfect. And yes others may seem special, but there is something special about you too. God gave us all gifts. Find out what yours is, and make it work for you.
Or better yet, let His will prevail over your life and watch everything else fall into place. All I'm saying is this... Don’t let anyone determine your worth but you.
Marlo Mondays Ya’ll! And it’s time to talk about what’s really real.
I’ve been feeling some way lately about how the people in my life, family, friends and so-called friends feel they are entitled to a piece of my pie that they neither helped buy nor bake.
Many stories have been told about those who forget where they came from on the way up, only to be reminded on their fall from grace. However, that’s not what I’m talking about today. I’m sure we’ve all had problems with friends, family and so-called friends who ride your coattails to the top, but won’t break a sweat or lift a finger to pursue their own dreams and goals because they are too busy telling you what you should be doing FOR THEM now that they think you’re on the come up. I’m all for helping those who knew me before the spotlight, have always kept it real and don’t act like I owe them anything. Those who were and are truly happy for me and sincerely want to see me succeed, to them I say Thank You!
On the flip side, the selfish, lazy asses who always want a hand out, who always expect me to pick up the check, who always want to walk in my shoes, sometimes literally, but have no respect for the blood, sweat and tears that got me to this stage in my life, these are the ones I must walk away from in order to save my sanity.
That’s what I’m telling you Divas and Divos, walk away from toxic people. Walk away from leeches and cling-ons because once they have sucked the life out of you, they will move on to the next one and won’t look back nor extend a hand to help you. My mama told me about those “smiling faces” telling lies. They show big smiles on the outside, pretending to be happy for you, but frown on the inside, hoping you fail. (Wink wink, you know who you are…)
Honestly, no one really knows what it’s like to be Marlo. If you only see the Loubotins and labels, pictures and parties, you’ll probably think I have it made, but I don’t. The truth is, every day I’m hustling! Every day I’m grinding. Every day I remember where I came from and what I’ve lived through and I’m not trying to go back. So, I work. I use what I have and what I know to make a better today, every day for myself and if I can do it so can you.
I’m finally realizing that there are some people who can’t go where I’m going. It’s not that I don’t love them. I love my family and real friends with all my heart. But sometimes, the glitter and the gold can blind people and they no longer see you, they see dollar signs and the champagne life which is always a lie. Everybody has something going on in their lives that money and fame can’t fix. I’m not rich or famous but even at this stage in my life I see that the publicity changes perceptions. Even those closest to you, who should know better, seem blind sometimes or maybe they just don’t give a… (rhymes with duck).
Through my blogs I try to share the real me each week, however, this slice of my life does not really tell my whole story. No one knows what it’s like to live in my world or walk in my shoes but me. So, I’m going to have to learn that I can help who I can help, when I can help, but I don’t owe anyone anything. Hard as it may be sometimes you just have to let go and let God. Blow them a kiss, wish them well, let those Loubotins serve their purpose and walk away. It’s advice I’m finally taking myself.
Til next week Divas and Divos. Smooches!
It’s Monday and that means it’s time for a new conversation just between us Divas and Divos!
Keep the topics and questions coming… You’re keeping me focused as I continue working on my hustle.
This week let’s talk about getting past your past… How many times have we all had to start over or wish we could press a “do over” button when we hit rock bottom? I don’t need to rehash all of the times this diva needed to start over, but I’m going to share some of my experiences to help you get through yours.
When I was younger and dumber, (and yes I can admit that I was young and dumb) I made a lot of mistakes and bad decisions. From running with the wrong crowds to believing that I was owed something because I ended up in foster care. I was rebellious, disrespectful and selfish. However, no good came from any of that, only consequences that continue to haunt me to this day.
Because of my past, doors are not always open to me. Because I have a criminal record, opportunities are not always given to me. People who don’t even know me judge me for what I did decades ago and I have to keep reminding myself that I am not my past. Every day I succeed and put more distance between my current situation and my past, there is someone who refuses to let me forget it. It’s like I have to start over every time I wake up and that is discouraging some days but exhausting every day! Believe me.
So, when you have to start over, the best thing you can do is remember Who you are and Whose you are. (You are an amazing child of God!) Starting over isn’t the scariest part. It’s not knowing what will happen that feeds our fears most. Don’t worry about any of that… Just start over even if you have to do it afraid!
I had to start over every time I was moved to a new foster home, until Grandma Holmes kept me. I had to start over each time I was released from incarceration until I decided I was not going back so I wouldn’t have to be released again. I had to start over every time a relationship ended. And guess what? Start over I did with a new outlook. I now anticipate new experiences and I’m better because of it.
My only advice when you’re faced with the daunting task of starting over is to just do it! You won’t know what you’re capable of doing until you’re willing to keep moving forward. Every great life experience has a starting point so wipe the dust off your shoulders, lift your head and don’t walk, strut into your next chapter like the divas and divos you are.
Marlo did it and so can you.
Divas and Divos… What day is it? It’s Marlo Mondays!!! And this Diva is turned up!
I spent the weekend in New York. A city I’ve grown to love because it’s true, if you have a dream, New York City is the place to pursue it. And it’s like Mr. Sinatra said,” if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.” So New York is now my 2nd home, but don’t sleep, St. Petersburg, Fla is not too shabby either. Some of the most successful brothers and sisters in show business call it home. The beautiful Angela Basset is from there... Former Middleweight Champion, Winky Wright is too. My childhood friend, the extremely talented Will Packer, movie producer extraordinaire was born and raised there, and so was Ms. Marlo herself.
Before I go any further I want to give a huge shout out to Will Packer to congratulate him on the success of his latest movie, Think Like a Man Too. I attended the premier at the American Black Film Festival, (ABFF) this past weekend and I laughed, cried and then laughed til I cried. It was funny, sweet and just well done so kudos to the entire cast and a big thanks to the founder of the ABFF, Jeff Friday who created this platform to showcase black films and filmmakers.
On the subject of dreams… Will is an awesome dreamer who wasn’t satisfied with dreaming only – so he went after what he dreamt about and now look at him. He’s one of the reasons that I decided to talk about the power of realizing dreams today. Will, Angela, Winky and countless others have proven that Nothing is Impossible and it doesn’t matter where you came from. If you can dream it, then you can do it. (Yeah R.Kelly! You told us to believe we can fly!) You have to believe in yourself, and to me, that’s what New York City represents. It’s filled with people with big dreams who may have come from small towns like me, but made their way to New York, to make them come true. No one ever imagined a little brown girl like me, from country-bunkin St. Petersburg, Florida with my history and record would end up rubbing elbows with the talented and famous in New York City, while pursuing My dreams. So the message for all my divas and divos is this, NEVER give up on yourself. It doesn’t matter what your situation looks like right now, we were all created to do great things. If you can dream, then know that dreams come to inspire you. I’m living proof that anything is possible so don’t give up because I’m not. #everydayI’mhustling.
On another note, let me tell you what happened to me on my way to New York… You may want to take a seat for this!
I was flying Delta, First Class to New York when a rat (or mouse – what difference does it make? It was a nasty little rodent), decided to run across my foot. WTH? I couldn’t believe it… but you know what was worse? The flight attendant tried to convince me that it was more afraid of me than I should have been of him. (Really lady?) And then she had the nerve to ask me did I want something to eat? Seriously? Absolutely not! Didn’t she see that the rat ran towards the galley (aka kitchen area)? I want nothing to eat or drink on this plane. At that point, all I did want was to get off!
Then last but not least…
While driving down 34th Street we were rear ended by a yellow cab! I got a busted lip, had my first encounter with New York’s Finest and hadn’t even been there 24 hours. It was an experience that could only happen in New York City! Now I’m down in sunny South Beach recuperating from my trip. Rest, relaxation, bikinis and cocktails are just what the doctor ordered.
Be sure to log in next Monday divas and dios, I’ve got some tea to spill. Til then… Smooches!
A diva asked me how I feel about family and did I want kids of my own. Well, Marlo loves the kids and if it’s in the cards for me, I hope to have a family of my own. I have lots of nieces and nephews that I’m very close to and LOVE!
And, family is very, very important to me, even though they can get on your nerves.
My family, both biological and foster, are a hawt mess! There is never a dull day with any of them and honestly, there are days when I’d like to divorce them. (I’m sure they feel the same about me too – we all crazy!) But, I love them for life and thank God for them.
We don’t get to choose who we’re related to and sometimes I think Ashton is going to jump out and yell “you just got punked” after the DNA test says I am indeed kin to some of my relatives, (raised eyebrow and side eye!). But I’m sure there are many people with no family who wish they had my crazies! So, while I don’t always love how we act toward each other, I do always love them. Family is forever!
Ta-ta Divas and Divos… Til next week, smooches!
Reveal, refresh and renew the power within – then do it for others…
Divas and Divos, you know what day it is, but I’m not spilling tea. Dropping jewels, (of wisdom) is more like it.
Yesterday, I hosted an event that is very close to my heart. It was Glam It Up time for about 20 girls under the care of Georgia’s Department of Youth and Family Services. In other words, these beautiful future divas are currently in foster care – (now you see my connection) and this day of glam was just for them. I know firsthand how low your spirit and self-esteem can be while your life and family are in flux. So I created Glam It Up to give girls something to remind them that they’re beautiful and valued no matter what life was throwing at them.
Joining me in this effort was Yuvondrea Tremble, Stacie Conliffe and the awesome team who worked with them from the National Youth Advocate Program in Augusta, GA. They did their thing and produced a top notch event to give the ladies a day they will never forget. Kudos to each and every one of you who helped us make this day “do what it do” to bring smiles to our ladies of honor.
Our theme was Refresh, Reveal and Renew You. It was held at the Columbia County Exhibition Center and co-hosted by a long list of vendors and professionals who generously donated their time and services to help make the event a huge success. Everyone from the hair stylists, make-up artists, DJ and photographer to the caterers, servers, speakers and volunteers gave their all, expecting nothing in return. But if they feel like me, I’m sure they got far more than they gave. I also can’t forget to mention my girl Kia Burgess, who lent a hand and her heart to the cause and helps me whenever I need her.
I created Glam It Up in 2011 to help young girls build their self-esteem and teach them the fundamentals of life that go overlooked when you are growing up amidst such turmoil. Glam It Up is a resource where the ladies can ask questions, be inspired, learn, dream, and realize that no matter where they are today, there is bright tomorrow. An amazing life awaits them if they believe and discover that their best resource lies within.
So we made every moment count yesterday! Between manis and pedis , hair and make-up, we turned up! Danced the Nae-Nae, heard inspiring words, laughed, hugged, made new friends and life long memories. We left each other feeling renewed, refreshed and better than we came.
I’m going to end with a quote from the beautiful angel, Ms. Maya Angelou… "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." I can only hope I lived up to her words yesterday by making the ladies feel as beautiful on the outside as they are on the inside.
Spread love Divas and Divos, it’s the greatest gift you can give.
Marlo Mondays in effect Divas & Divos! Let’s have a little fun with the question this week okay???
A diva asked, “How I stay in shape?” Well, fitness is not just about the body. I’m a southern girl and we are thick! Where I’m from, you need a little junk in your trunk if you want to keep your boo! Lol… But I have a little advice for ya’ll, if you want to live a long, full and active life. We gotta watch what we say, make sure you don’t forget to give thanks when we pray and remember you are what you eat!
Yes, this girl loves some cornbread, mac & cheese and fried, (insert some food that had parents! Lol) but I learned that everything in moderation is best. The same holds true for your mind. If your mind has no peace, neither does anything else in your life. So, we have to filter the stress – keep it in moderation. Life is going to happen to all of us, and some days will be harder than others, but if we keep the faith and live each day filled with gratitude, no matter how bad your situation looks, (and ya’ll know this girl had many days of bad situations) we will be physically and mentally fit.
I learned a long time ago, divas and divos that my body is a temple, if I take care of it, it will take care of me. I eat better than I used to, I juice a lot and I am a beast in the gym, on the treadmill, doing resistance training, on the elliptical machine, taking classes. I fully utilize my gym membership and when I’m feeling lazy, I get some help in the form of a trainer. However, the most important workout in my life is the effort it takes to put God first. I don’t have a miracle tip or new fad to share with you. A great body takes work, commitment, patience and faith. That’s how I do it, and I promise you – you can too!
Hey Divas and Divos!
It’s time for Marlo Mondays and today we’re going deep! I told you that I’ll be using my blog as a platform to talk about anything and everything, including the topics and ideas you all send me. Ya’ll have some interesting things you want to talk about, but as long as it’s not too inappropriate, (you know I have to keep it clean for my little “Glam girls”) I’m game! This week I’m going to answer another question that I get all the time. Fortunately, this one isn’t rude and I think my answer may help somebody who’s in or has been in my same situation. So, here goes… A diva sent me this question:
How do you believe in yourself when others don’t? How do you stay true to who you are?
That’s a good one. The truth is, we all have insecurities that mess with our self-esteem and self-worth. I’ve shared my history of being a felon (although that debt was paid a long time ago), being abused as a child, being in foster care, dealing with a mother who was a substance abuser which ultimately led to foster care for me and my siblings. I shared it, so that these blemishes won’t forever be my shame.
During the time when I was being shuttled from one house to the next, feeling like no one wanted me, I had to find something to embrace to give my life worth and value. Something that was truly special about me. I chose fashion. Not only did I choose to find my beauty in beautiful things, especially clothes, I used it to protect myself from the stigmas associated with incarceration, or being in foster care. I used it to make myself valuable to myself and others. I used it to soothe my pain because it was something I was good at and at least I had this platform to stand on when those around me said I was worthless.
Then, God blessed me with a foster grandmother who showed me love. I can never thank you enough Arrie Holmes and I'll love you forever! She gave me real love and acceptance by making sure I was no longer an unwanted child, shuttled from foster home to foster home. She told me how much God loves me and her belief in me became my belief in me. She also helped me understand that the opinions of others should not be the ruler I use to measure my self-worth. Those who sought to destroy me did not create me, so they had no power over me. She helped me understand that truth so it’s that spirit ya’ll saw on the RHOA or the I Dream of NeNe Wedding show and it’s who I am. I now know my worth and refuse to let anyone compromise how I feel about me ever again. And yes, I have my low days when I’m not this tower of confidence just like everyone else. But then I remember who I am and whose I am, (a child of God) so my haters can't use my past indiscretions, mistakes or consequences against me. That’s how I keep my head up. I believe God created me to be and do great things, so if nobody believes in me, I know He does and no other opinion matters. That’s how I believe in myself and that’s how I keep it real every day, all day. That’s also why I don’t forget where I came from. My past experiences helped shape who I am now, and I am above no one. I’m getting my hustle on just like you divas and divos and I never ever forget that.
We are all created for a great purpose no matter what we’ve done or how many times we have failed. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise.
I hope this answers the question.