Posted in Blissful Favorites, Life as Bianca, My Lenses on Life

What is Black Joy to Me?

Photo by Gilbert Anthony on Pexels.com

Though I talk about black struggles, I want to end the month on a positive note. I want to express my idea of black joy.

Black Joy is:

singing Lift Every Voice and Sing

seeing Black Love

laughing no matter what the situation

seeing black excellence in all facets of society

watching the First African American male being sworn in as President

watching the First African American female being sworn in as Vice President

reading ignorance and racism to FILTH

uniting as one at the voting polls

looking fresh and fly when we step on the scene

seeing Black Fathers love their children

smelling our food

dancing and showing our swag when our song comes on

honoring African Americans legends and heroes who came before us

acknowledging the diaspora of blackness in our world

wearing my hair in various ways

memorializing our resilience through history

living as me though it is hard

This is black joy to me.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites, Life as Bianca

My Blissful Favorite Things

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

*** To the tune to The Sound of Music’s My Favorite Things***

Hugs with my loved ones and cuddles with Luna

Singing sweet melodies and worshiping Jesus

Indulging in Chick fil A and smothering pancakes

These are a few of my favorite things.

Writing Bliss Fans and researching Pinterest quotes

Fun sister nail dates and brunching for breakfast

Observing strangers and my own commentary

These are a few of my favorite things

Watching Broadway musicals and wisdom from mommy

Being alone and uninterrupted sleep time

Christmas and tasty Haitian food

These are a few of my favorite things.

Negative People

Life’s injustices

When I don’t get my way

I simply remember my favorite things, and then I don’t feel so bad.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

Blissful Favorites: Christmas Movies

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Pexels.com

A big tradition in my family is watching all the Christmas movies we can during the season. We can never get enough of them especially the classics and the claymation specials. I cannot list all of my favorites but I will narrow it down to 10.

So here it goes:

In no particular order:

  • Home Alone (1990) & Home Alone 2 (1992)– This movie series is one of the few Christmas movies my family and I can watch all year-round without fail. Very quotable in my family. My dad even has a Christmas sweater that says “Merry Christmas, Ya Filthy Animal.”
  • Nestor, The Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (1977)– Not biblically correct to anything but a sweet movie in claymation. The movie is centered around the donkey who brought Mary and Joseph to Bethlehem. I thought it was a smart, creative take on nativity story.
  • The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)– One of my favorite versions of the Christmas Carol. Jim Henson is a genius in the song choices and castings. It is funny and sentimental to the values of Christmas: giving, loving, and caring for your fellow man. Michael Caine is a fantastic Scrooge.
  • The Year Without A Santa Claus (1974)– Santa did not feel like Santa-ing. SHOCKER!! I love the storyline and the Miser Brothers songs.
  • The Christmas Story (1983)- A Christmas tradition my family and I have is watching it on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. Quotable movie. “You’ll shoot your eye out.” P.S. They play the movie for 24 hours on certain channels.
  • Elf (2003)-Will Ferrell is a GENIUS. Definitely a must see in my family. It is funny and full of unadulterated fun.
  • The Little Drummer Boy (1968)– The Bible does not talk about a drummer boy BUT I still love this movie. A young boy plays for the Messiah and the events that lead up to that moment. I love the song as well, the original one.
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)– Fun fact: My siblings were in a small production of this movie at a local theatre many years ago. My sister was Peppermint Patty and my brother was Shermy. It is a great classic movie and holds a special place in my family. It is a fun movie.
  • How The Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)– Dr. Seuss’s rhymes and storyline were quite sublime. (see what I did there). There is not a Christmas we do not watch this special.
  • Santa Claus is Coming To Town (1970)– The origins of Santa Claus. I love Fred Astaire’s commentary on the burning questions the people want to know. It is fun. We sing along with the songs and it’s fun.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

My Christmas List

Photo by Giftpundits.com on Pexels.com

Well if you MUST ask…

  • Well-Read Black Girl: Finding Our Stories, Discovering Ourselves-Glory Edim (book)
  • The Water Dancer Ta-Nehisi Coates (book)
  • Small Doses: Potent Truths for Everyday Use- Amanda Seales (book)
  • Tough Love- Susan Rice (book)
  • I-tunes Card
  • “Blessed” ring (James Avery 8)

Since toys are not of interest to me, books are like candy to me. I had to narrow down the list of books I wanted. I like to give options just in case something cannot be found. I love music so I started asking for an I-tunes gift card instead of asking for individual CDs (plus I hear CDs are not cool anymore). James Avery is actually a jewelry store I love. I have gotten a ring from there since 2014 so they know me there. Usually my Christmas lists are hard to come up with since I am so busy so I just started making notes months in advance if there was something I liked that I could not buy. But that’s my list.

What’s on your Christmas list?

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

Blissful Favorites: Christmas Music

Photo by Giftpundits.com on Pexels.com

The Christmas season is HERE!! I love the feeling and season of Christmas. Everything is lit up and it’s a wonderful time for my family. One of the things I enjoy is CHRISTMAS MUSIC. I have had this playlist for several years and it keeps growing. I hope you enjoy while living life.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

“I Thank My God For” Reader’s Choice: Music Playlist

I wanted to share my love of music by giving a playlist of thanksgiving. I hope you are encouraged and lifted. This new playlist is called Blessed, Grateful, and Thankful. I centered the repertoire towards Christian and Gospel music. God’s love flows His love and blessings on us. It is also important to give honor to God for His goodness. Enjoy, Bliss Fam.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

Blissful Conqueror Music Mix

To lighten the intensity of my Conqueror Series, I made a Conqueror playlist on my Spotify. It’s a mix of series genres: R&B, Christian, Gospel, Worship, and Pop. The theme is empowerment, joy, overcoming, and kicking obstacles in the butt. Enjoy!!

Tell me your favorite empowering song that makes you feel like a conqueror!

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

Blissful Favorites: Books

I did get to read a little. My schedule will be busy into the Fall and Winter BUT I did want to share two great books.

Image result for more than enough book

More Than Enough: Claiming Space for Who You Are-Elaine Welteroth

Talk about quotable, thriving, and empowering! There is more to the story than the headlines and hype of the second African American editor-in-chief and youngest editor-in-chief in Conde Nast magazine history. Elaine Welteroth shares her journey to editor-in-chief and beyond. I could not put this book down. I neglected sleep to read more because I saw myself in these pages. Trying to navigate in a professional world as a female of color, she openly shares her struggles of balancing work and play, love, the industry, health, and many other facets of her life. It is quite inspiring. It dares you to climb higher and dream bigger. It’s a blissful favorite too.

Image result for dear madam president

Dear Madam President-Jennifer Palmieri

Highly recommend this book for driven lady hustlers who want to make a difference in their homes, community, and world. I read it in one sitting. Trust and believe, it’s hard to be a woman in a male dominated field where being assertive is being too emotional, where it is better to be silent than speak, where we should smile all the time, and the like. It’s just hard to be taken seriously sometimes. The author was the former White House Director of Communications in the Obama administration and was the Director of Communications for then-presidential nominee, Hilary Clinton. This book is not a political ploy but an empowering challenge to the future female leaders and I believe…the first female president. I don’t believe that will be me but I do believe that this is a book for the female hustlers. It gives encouraging words and practical steps to keep in mind moving up in this world. A Blissful Favorite!!!

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

Blissful Favorites: Must Listen Music

I am always down for good music that can send me to another place. It’s not just about the beat to me; it is about the musicality, the message, the voice, and everything in between! My favorites are worth listening to. All are BLISSFULLY BIANCA APPROVED!!!

PJ Morton-Paul

Image result for pj morton paul

Cool, groovy, and lit. I have already sang the praises of PJ Morton in prior posts but this album is really awesome. The features are very perfect. I mean these people can SANG (except for Angela Rye…she speaks). I appreciate his musicality, his message, and his soul in giving a story with each song. My favorite songs are Ready, Practicing, Built for Love, and Say So.

Yuna-Rogue

Image result for yuna rouge album cover

This is my first time introducing Yuna. She is a very beautiful soul with a voice similarly to Sade. She is subtle and modest yet soulful. She is a Malaysian artist that I discovered on Youtube; she did a duet with Usher called Crush (LOVE)!! She is definitely underrated but she has musicality and inner beauty that radiates in each song. My favorite songs are Black Marquee, Castaway, Likes, and Pink Youth.

H.E.R.-I Used to Love Her

Image result for h.e.r. i used to know her

I have talked about H.E.R on multiple occasions. And I STAN her (pun intended). She is authentic and truly about the message rather than the commercial look. She is raw and real in her lyrics. She speaks her truth in this album. She can PLAY and SANG so well. She deserves all the awards. My favorite songs are Carried Away, Fate, Racks, Could’ve Been, Hard Place, Lord Is Coming.

So what are you listening to? I am open to suggestions on underrated, under-appreciated but awesome musicians and artists. So let me know.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Posted in Blissful Favorites

Blissful Favorites: R&B Favorites

Recently, I have been in a music trance with R&B reminiscent of 90s and early 00’s R&B. Like I grew up with Lauryn Hill, D’Angelo, Jill Scott, Musiq Soulchild, Erykah Badu, and many other smooth voices. Pretty much the Golden Age and last of grown, quality R&B music I felt I could gel with. I still listen to R&B of those decades but there have been a recent repertoire of R&B that is cool, fresh, and musically pleasing to ya girl.

So the artists I have encountered that have rocked my world.

Photo by bruce mars on Pexels.com

Ari Lennox

She is cool, sexy, grown, sultry, and just melanin goodness. The first female artist of J.Cole’s record label, Dreamville adds something special to music. I love her singing and spoken elements to her songs. She makes it personal and real. There is some language…it’s grown folks music. But it is worth listening to.

Danielle Brooks

The Orange is the New Black actress can SANGGGG!!! The only sad thing about her EP is it is short. She is so soulful and so real. My favorite song is “Black Woman”. It is real and raw about all the facets having melanin. Definitely a blissful favorite!

Nao

I discovered Nao on Tiny Desk Concerts. Her voice is out of this world. It is angelic, extraterrestrial, and just WOW!! She has ranges and her musicality is amazing. Her style is electronic music, funk and R&B. But it’s still great. Her recent album is definitely on repeat for me.

So if you enjoy R&B music, you should listen to these ladies. I discovered them and it has been great enjoying the musicality and soul of these artists.

Blissfully,

Bianca