Monday, June 4, 2012

Today in Black History

Third national Black convention met in Philadelphia with twenty-nine delegates from eight states. Henry Sipkins of New York was elected president.

Samuel Gravely born on this day was appointed captain of the Navy Destroyer Escort, U.S.S. Falgout, the first African American to command a United States warship. He later received the rand of Rear Admiral, a first for an African American navyman.

Mississippi Valley State University is founded in Itta Bena, Miss.

Angela Davis acquitted by white jury in San Jose, California of charges stemming from a 1970 courtroom shoot-out.

Arna Bontemps, Writer and Educator in Nashville, Tennessee died on this day.

Four African Americans win Tony Awards for Black and Blue

Baltimore Orioles manager Frank Robinson is named assistant general manager of the club, the third African American to become as assistant GM.


How to Be HAPPIER without a Relationship

I absolutely love the Essence and all the information they provide for and to black women via the magazine and online. One of my FAVorite columnist to read online is "The Modern Day Matchmaker" aka Paul Carrick Brunson. At the end of May he dished out some information on how to be "HAPPIER" without a relationship. Here are the 14 steps to take that definitely fall in line with our #SingleGirlSummer campaign. Let's Get it LADIES!!~*

Written for by Paul Carrick Brunson

You are responsible for your own happiness!!
That’s what our marriage counselor told my wife and me a few days before we jumped the broom. At the time, I didn’t get it. I thought that, as a couple, we were supposed to complete each other, and therefore make each other happy. It didn’t fully register until a few years into our marriage that no matter how well intentioned my wife or I were, we could not “change” each other. Therefore our ability to “make” each other happy was futile. Sure, I could tell a joke and make her laugh or she could surprise me with tickets to the game and light up my face with a smile but ultimately those things were not happiness, they were kind acts with kind responses.

If you are struggling with your own happiness, whether or not you’re in a relationship, the following are 14 things you must know. 

Buy More Experiences And Fewer Material Goods
This means more putt-putt golf and vacations. Fewer cars and new TV’s. In a survey from the Journal of Consumer Psychology, people were asked which of two purchases made them happier, fully 57% of respondents reported that they had derived greater happiness from their experiential purchase, while only 34% reported greater happiness from their material purchase

Know the Ingredients of Happiness
There are three keys to happiness.
1) Pleasure (stuff that feels good in the moment – go anywhere you want with that statement…lol)
2) Meaning (belief/religion/philosophy)
3) Engagement (interaction with family & friends.)

Know that Rich People Are Not Happier
Don’t think Diddy is truly any happier than you. Well, on second thought, Diddy might be, but know the super-wealthy aren’t that much happier than the average person. Studies show once you make 75K a year, more money doesn’t make you all that much happier.

Visit The Double G (Gold’s Gym & God’s House)
Exercise and religion both make us happy and it’s because they provide small boosts to well-being on a regular basis. Although, I did once workout at my church and it was a miserable experience.

Spend More Time With Friends
Happiness expert Daniel Gilbert, who wrote the book Stumbling on Happiness, in an interview I once saw him do stated ”We are happy when we have family, we are happy when we have friends and almost all the other things we think make us happy are actually just ways of getting more family and friends."

Givers Are the Happiest
It’s the first of the month, you just got paid, and you’re thinking making it rain on yourself is the quickest route to happiness. WRONG! Several studies show that those that give or what’s called buy “pro-socially” (ex: day-to-day activities that include friends and family) are happier than those that simply spend on personal items.

Drop the Mean Muggers In Your Crew
Research by Nicholas Christakis, a social scientist and internist at Harvard, states “the reality is straightforward: our friends strongly shape our behavior. We imagine ourselves as individuals, responsible for our own choices and emotions, but that sense of independence is a romantic myth. There is no wall between people.” So this means happier friends, happier you!

Set Ambitious Goals
People who set conservative goals have a harder time achieving satisfaction than those who set ambitious goals. This is according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

Happiness Can Come In A Few Seconds
Thinking about the absence of a positive event from your life allows you to better appreciate the presence of that positive event in your life. Try it.

Do This Gratitude Exercise
Take a few minutes to write down five things you’re grateful for each week. Do this for 10 weeks. Studies show those that follow this simple exercise exhibit higher levels of happiness.

Tell Someone Thank You
“Thank you” is one of the most powerful word combinations. Use it often but use it genuinely. The result is a sense of overwhelming gratitude.

Don't Move to Russia
I found this to be fascinating, here are the happiest and least happy places in the world:

Take Vacations
Jamaica, on the beach, Red Stripe in one hand, favorite book in the other. Not much else needed to explain here.

Think Faster
The Psychology of Science reports that we experience an independent increase in positive mood when we think fast rather than slow. Therefore, I’m going to need everyone to read this entire blog post again, but do it in 30 seconds.

Follow him on twitter @PaulCBrunson to ask questions and receive further tips on how to be HAPPILY you!!


Sunday, June 3, 2012

SophistiKat "Dose of Soul"

This man just makes my day in so many ways with his music!! So. .while contemplating on what song of his to post today. .I decided to go with a FAVorite "Mo Betta" (I LOVE HIM and all of his songs. .but I do have a few FAVS. .believe it or not).

This song lyrically is what most of us hope for and pray God blesses us with in a mate. . . .Yes Glory!!

Woo Child!! Mr. DeVaughn when are you coming to Chattanooga? ;")


SophistiKat "Dessert of the Month"

When I said I was ready for SUMMER. .I was not playing around. I always try to pick recipes  appropriate for the month and with June being here and in most cases it's already Hot and Steamy in most places this will fit in nicely to any event, holiday, etc.

Now everyone who knows me personally KNOWS that I LOVE CUPCAKES!!
So I came up with my own ORIGINAL recipe (with the help of my Mama) to share with you.
My previous post introduces the "SophistiKat: Book Club" pick of the month.
I am going FULL force with the "Single Girl Summer" campaign to support not only the book and author. .but to promote being fit, fabulous, and embracing the "single" life. .LOVING yourself!!

Here is my treat. .
    The Single Girl Summer Cupcake ;")

1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 Cup chopped Strawberries (Fresh Strawberries)
1/2 sliced Pineapples
1-2 tablespoons milk if needed* 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Beat butter and sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. 
Add eggs and vanilla extract and mix until combined. 
Add flour, baking powder and salt with the mixer on low speed, then gradually increase speed. 
Add in chopped strawberries and pineapples and beat on medium speed until the strawberries break down about 1-2 minutes. 
At this point the strawberries and pineapples most likely have enough liquid that you don’t need to add any milk to the batter. 
If dry and is not like typical cake batter then add milk 1-2 tablespoons at a time, beating until incorporated.

Pour into cupcake liners, filling 2/3 of the way full, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cake is set. Let cool, then frost.

Vanilla Buttercream Icing 

3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons whipping cream

In a standing mixer fitted with a whisk, mix together sugar and butter. 
Mix on low speed until well blended and then increase speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes.
Add vanilla and cream and continue to beat on medium speed for 1 minute more, adding more cream if needed for spreading consistency.


"Pearls, Books, and Tea":The SophistiKat Bookclub

JUNE is finally here and I am ready to kick off the month and SUMMER with a BANG!! 

For starters. .the SophistiKat Bookclub is still  here!! This title and author are no stranger to the Sophisticate Chronicles. The Spotlight was shined on this book right here back in April and since then I've read this book 3 times!! Yes I said 3 and will read it again this month ;") #Boaw

Set in Chicago, Illinois with work filled days and HoTT eventful nights this book takes us on an exciting and emotional journey with 3 women who embark on one of the best SUMMERS of there life which will end in life lessons learned and a bond of friendship that will last a lifetime.

Button Jackson: A certified SophistiKat with much attitude and drive to match is a successful entrepreneur owning one of the hottest restaurants in the city. While dealing with her own personal issues from men to her mad mama she will be the glue that makes this group stick together.

Meghan Cherry: After an emotional and draining divorce she is out to discover who she really is and accomplish dreams deferred during the time of her marriage. With the help of Button she finds all those things and more as the summer progresses on.

Dawn Martin:  Dating one of Chicago's most eligible bachelor's and working hard to make partner at her firm this chick is definitely the "Lethal SophistiKat". All work and no play. .However the summer will bring about a change she hadn't anticipated.

  About the Author

Deanna Kimberly Burrell is a successful businesswoman, marketing maven, published author, and popular speaker. Her first book, Voted "Most Creative"- Perspectives on Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Happiness, is a collection of poems and essays that inspire creativity, growth, and self-expression.

Single Girl Summer is her first novel and it's more than just a story of sophisticated friends having fun in the big city. Single Girl Summer is a celebration of women - yes, their strengths and weaknesses but more than that, their ability to pull themselves up by their designer bootstraps.

Once you pick this book up. .you WON'T be able to put it down. The campaign of "Single Girl Summer" is in FULL effect!! Red Cups, Peep Toe Sandals, and a Cupcake. .I am READY!!

The official kick off to SUMMER is only 2 weeks away but Deanna Burrell has us already amped.

This month we will have a Book Club "Pow Wow". There will be "Single Girl Summer" Tea and CUPCAKES!! Location and other details will be announced within the next week.

Please go purchase your copy today!!