Five Instagram Pages That Will Inspire You!

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo Credit: Shutterstock
Photo Credit: Shutterstock
I came to the Instagram game a little late, but now it’s my favorite social media platform. People actually read the posts (at least the kinds of accounts I follow), and the interactions here feel authentic and genuine, no digital overload, i.e. Twitter.

Nope, Instagram or IG as we like to say (insert smile here), just flows without effort.  I believe the energy we project out into the world returns to us.  It’s one of the reasons I am so drawn to IG accounts with empowering messages. I mean how many selfies can one girl look at over and over again?  Self absorption gets old.

So every month, I’ll highlight five inspirational IG pages. Exploring the digital space is one of my past times.  It’s just like the real world in a way – lots of beauty waiting to be unearthed.

Oh, do let me know who inspires you, too, by commenting below.

@ifeelprettyinc. – Are you about your business – entrepreneur / creator / professional? You’ll definitely want to start following @ifeelprettyinc., a digital marketing and branding co. dedicated to helping the entrepreneur shine.

They bring it, everyday day. Get your morning shot of inspiration and encouragement, along with a mix of no-nonsense advice all designed to help you live more fully and awake. What more can we ask for?

@rufflesribbonsnbows – Ok, y’all, full disclosure, Chel, the owner of Ruffles Ribbons N’ Bows Boutique  is one of my best friends. I promise, I’m not biased (ok, maybe a little).

Seriously though, her page bursts with hope, beauty and girlish enthusiasm. She is a creator, and hand makes tutus and hair accessories for kiddos and grown ups.  Style and substance? Check! Awesome Mompreneur? Check!

@lifefuel365 – These days it feels like everyone wants to tout expertise, especially in the area of empowerment, but in actuality, not many are authentic.

Jimmy Jean is a certified personal coach, motivator and visionary who drops profound mental gems (“Old ways don’t create new seasons”), and then leans back so you can absorb it all. What he says matters and challenges your growth.

@wellreadblackgirl – In my pre-kid life, I read lots and lots of books. I am still an avid reader, but these days, being selective is the name of the game.

Enter Well-Read Black Girl, which highlights works by women of color. I either discover something new or am reminded of a favorite book I want to re-read. Great books are oxygen for the soul!

@life_love_and_lavender _blog – Mrs. Fiola writes a beautiful and honest blog about life, love and marriage. We hear lots about relationships in our culture, but not so much about the day-to-day journey. Her IG posts share the story with grace and authenticity.

Here you will find a vibrant digital gallery of personal photos, flowers, and simple yet poignant quotes from the blog such as: “Love is friendship that has caught fire. It is quiet understanding, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times. It settles for less than perfection and makes allowances for human weaknesses.”

 

What’s Surprising about Beyoncé’s Latest Album

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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beyonce-new-album-2013

Innovation: The act of starting something for the first time; introducing something new; founding, origination, initiation, creation, institution, or introduction.

We all thought Beyoncé and her team were on hiatus, and boom, overnight she brings us new music. Our weekly grind just became easier, huh? Her self-titled album has social media buzzing, with record downloads. Quite simply, its a hit; 400,000 copies sold in under 6 hours.

I’ll be honest. I had a complete attitude. Why? Well, my relationship with Beyoncé could easily be characterized as love/hate. While I identify and admire her sensuality and talent, sometimes I despise what feels inauthentic about her persona. Well, she broke down my walls, and I’m sure thousands of others with this album.

It’s her most raw piece of work. Powerful, impactful, soulful and mature. She is a wife and mother; this is unapologetic
grown-woman music. There is nothing gimmicky or mainstream. Beyoncé is raunchy, descriptive and X-rated. And, you know what, I love it!

beyonce-jay-z-drunk-in-love-video
Footage from the video, Drunk In Love

I’m especially feelin’ these lines something serious:

“Then I fill the tub up halfway then ride it with my surfboard.

Surfboard, surfboard…

Graining on that wood, graining, graining on that wood.

I’m swerving on that, swerving, swerving on that big body Benz.

Serving all this, swerve, surfing all of this good, good.”

“Drunk in Love” is definitely the breakout single. I’m sure it is responsible for several hangovers and counter sex. It’s one of my favorites. Your girl is dealing with a headache from injuring herself after attempting to reenact the video.

Blow,” another vivid, sexually-charged song has a classic R&B vibe. Is it me, or is it clear she and her husband, music mogul Jay-Z have a healthy sex life. What’s the result for us? Steamy music with character. She alludes to mild discord in their relationship with  songs like “Jealous,” or the duet with Drake, “Mine.” What relationship is not complicated?

There are other standout tracks for me. The collaboration with Frank Ocean (“I Miss You“) is classic. While her dedication to baby daughter Blue is sweet; so many mothers can relate.

Earlier this year she released “I Been On,” revamped on the album as “Flawless,” where she proclaims herslef Queen of Pop; she tells all of us to “Bow down, bitches!” You all can take that bow; I’ll stand.

You make good music, Beyonce; you have me doing all different kinds of things with it. I play the introduction to “Flawless” featuring Nigerian author and feminist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie for my 11-year-old twin girls every morning; the words are intelligent and inspirational.

They tell girls it is ok to be great:

We teach girls to shrink themselves, to make themselves smaller.

We say to girls you can have ambition, but not too much.

You should aim to be successful, but not too successful,

otherwise you will threaten the man.”

This brings me back to the definition of innovative: a new way. Why is Beyonce so successful? She is ever changing, and thinking of novel ways to perform. She aligns herself with smart, trustworthy people, who genuinely want her to succeed. If something goes wrong, she corrects it. She keeps us on our toes,  or now our surfboards.

Will we sing any of these songs 20 years from now? I’ll let time tell that story. Will I be in my fifties saying: “We woke up in the kitchen, wondering how this shit happened. Oh, baby!” I hope so! I want to write a personal thank you letter for this album.

Hopefully, over the next week you can find some time to listen. Let me know what you think.

beyonce-new-album-sales

 Live In Color! – Valencia

Why I’m Crying and Not Apologizing (Guest Blog Post – Michelle Dowell)

Emelda De Coteau
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Emelda De Coteau

Mother, wife, sister, friend, writer / blogger / creative organizer, budding photographer... These are just a few of the many hats I juggle each day. I believe creativity is oxygen for the soul. I created Live In Color blog to celebrate the beauty in every moment, from faith to inspiration and motherhood.And it is soon becoming Pray with Our Feet blog which will focus on the intersection of faith and activism. Follow the inspiration on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/praywithourfeetblog/
Emelda De Coteau
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Photo courtesy of author, Michelle Dowell
Photo courtesy of author, Michelle Dowell

So I was watching a television show today, and it awakened the thinking bug in me. Now my juices are flowing, and I have to bring up something that has been bothering me for a while now.

There were two ladies on the TV show who were talking about the difficulties of juggling new motherhood, “Wife-Life” (as I so fondly deem marital bliss) and their careers. Then one of them, the new Mom, broke down in tears because she felt that she wasn’t enjoying being a new Mom, because all of her responsibilities were keeping her from being able to slow down, and take a baby breather, slowly adjusting to her new role. But here’s the thing that bothered me, and we all do it, too. She apologized for crying. She apologized a couple of times actually, while she explained away her tears to her friend.

As I felt my own tears welling up in my eyes (because c’mon, you know we moms have been there), in mid-sniffle, I realized something. Why was this beautiful, accomplished new Mamma apologizing for crying?

She has EVERY right to cry, she just had a baby, for crying out loud! She’s worrying about: breastfeeding on time, sleep schedules, pumping milk, getting back to her career after her maternity hiatus, appearing sexy to her hubby again, finding time to do “the do” with her hubby, and then getting her home in order, laundry done, pets groomed, etc. As a matter of fact, if she wasn’t crying, I would be worried. So why apologize for showing emotions, especially to another woman?

Getting deeper into my thoughts at this point, I realized that, as a woman who cries at the drop of a hat (no, seriously, I do) and as a mom, wife, pet owner and entrepreneur, I know what its like to feel overwhelmed. It’s not just a Mom thing, though. I tend to think that all women get harried at the prospect of their hectic lives and the insurmountable tasks that loom before them, needing to be done a.s.a.p., simultaneously, and perfectly.

But since I AM a mother, I’m going to focus on us mammas right now. Why is it, that as a woman, I am expected not to utilize all of the perks that come with that title? After all, the whole women’s lib movement was birthed out of the fact that women were seen as the ‘weaker’ sex. It was proposed that we were the gentler, sweeter half of the human race, and therefore should be treated accordingly.

Now I’m not condoning all pre-women’s liberation-attitudes, albeit not wholly. I agree with some gals who think that in asserting our independence, we’ve also slid under the rug our femininity, which grants us the privilege of the “little things.”

What are the little things, you ask? Well, crying at the drop of a hat for one. Being emotional, high-strung beauties, was our role in the past, and while I don’t condone flitting around like a chicken with it’s head cut off, and acting nonsensical, I do think that we should have the right to display our emotions at will. We don’t have to replace the “I am woman, hear me roar” saying, but maybe we can make an addendum and add “or cry.”

Other niceties that are now pegged “old school” for a man to afford a female are holding the door open for us, holding our hands, picking up the check at dinner, taking off their hats around us, letting us walk on the inside of the sidewalk when walking down the street with us. When a guy does all of those things women go insane, and label them a great guy, when this is the treatment that men should be granting us anyway because we are ladies.

Being a lady, one should be able to express emotion at random, don’t ya think?

And being a woman, we certainly shouldn’t be apologizing for displaying those great qualities that make us the femi-feminists we were born to be. In other words, I have the choice and the right to be a lady, and show off any form of my femininity at all times.

And yes, as moms that right comes with the territory. Cry if necessary;be late if you need to because your little one pooped in their outfit right before you were leaving the house for a play-date. Laugh out loud at nothing because your life is so crazy that if you don’t laugh for a minute right now, you’ll be laughing for years in an asylum.

Get angry at your kiddo in public and threaten them with NO TV in front of the entire supermarket. I am a phone call or email away if you need someone to back you up to complete strangers in the potato chips aisle.

Ladies, let’s stop trying to match up with everyone’s idea of the perfect mom or woman and just be yourselves. Because guess, what? It’s who God meant us to be.

The next time you feel like breaking down, and sobbing in your SUV because your laundry room looks like a mini landfill, your pets have chewed or peed on your sofa, your little one is screaming for chicken nuggets in the backseat while your hubby asks you on the phone to buy a car thingy that you have no idea what it is or where to purchase it, do it.

Cry, sob, scream, laugh like Daffy duck, turn the music up, dance, turn on the DVD player; let your kiddos zone out to cartoons. Just be a woman! Who cares who is looking? Blame it on your cycle, your birth control, or menopause (yes, even if you are 20 years old).

So no more apologizing for being a female, gals. Embrace your irrationality and hormones. Flaunt your feelings as you would an economical (but HOT) outfit or a new pair of heels. Tell your hubby where he can go if he looks at you wrong (just kidding, maybe). Strut your stuff, because when you’re a woman, you have options.

We are women, hear us roar, or cry. No apologies needed.

About Michelle:
I’m Michelle, owner of Ruffles Ribbons N’ Bows Boutique on Etsy and mom to a 5-year-old boy & 4 crazy cats. My hubby and BFF of almost 7 years is my biggest supporter, encouraging me to keep at my craft.

I am currently writing a period-play set in 1939, two novels, and a children’s book series. We reside in Frisco, TX. I’m inspired by Harvey the White Rabbit & Elwood P. Dowd to always remain myself.

This post was originally published on E-Zine where Michelle shares some of her writing.
Article Source: http://ezinearticles.com/?Im-Sorry,-Im-A-Woman:-The-Crying-Game&id=7010341

Here are some awesome sites that further expound on some of the post:
http://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/good-to-cry
http://blog.kyria.com/giftedforleadership/2007/11/what_our_femininity_means.html