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Monday, August 27, 2012

OooooOooo Natural!

My baby sis did her "big chop" a couple of weeks ago! She's been growing it out for a year now and figured "what the hell?" and came back home with all of her perm cut off! It's amazing to see how many young women are going natural now, and at an even younger age! When I was a substitute a few years back, I came across a student who was about 15 years old with a beautiful shrunken puff that she was rocking like nobody's business. I recall staring at her all day but I couldn't figure out what I was marveling about. It wasn't until I got home and realized that I was amazed at her confidence. At her age, I would have never had the courage to wear my short natural hair. I just did not have the boldness or the esteem and NOBODY was doing it. Even at that time, "going natural" was nowhere near the phenomenon it is now. I was amazed at how comfortable she was with herself at such an impressionable age. Even when I went fully natural during my undergraduate years, I wasn't bold enough to wear my hair out; I usually hid behind braids....
Either way. I'm proud of my lil' sister and hope more girls will embrace their natural beauty at any age.

Becky at 19, month 1!

Mabel at 19, month 1!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

I Was Here

Mmkay, I'm in a blogging mood! The one thing I would suggest to anyone if he/she is travelling abroad and will be away for a while: buy a decent camera. I took my "Old Faithful" Sony Cybershot with me and it spoiled within a week of arrival. I had to find alternate solutions to taking pics by borrowing cameras and slapping my old one on my knee before I got it to work.... But I hope you all enjoyed what pictures I was able to capture. I found some old videos on my camera and decided to share. Enjoy!


Anyone know the name of this plant? You touch it and it closes up:)

Sneaking my video into the cultural center; I'm so sad I couldn't tape more... it was beautiful!
My darling Lois singing praises for me!
Yes, those are eels.... blaaaahhhhh (@ Nzulezo)

Tim helping out the fishermen in Anomabu

My dearie Kojo Antwi serenading me on a warm Easter evening.... #swoon

I am going to work really hard to get full footage of all the girlie goodies I brought from Ghana. In the meantime, here's a sneak peek!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Fall For The Book!

Now that I'm back home, I hope I can manage to squeeze a new book every month this fall. My last post got me on an African Lit kick so majority of my book list will be of such. Read along!

I found an African Lit Blog with extensive reviews and awesome posts! For book lovers only!

This selection of short stories won the Caine Prize for African Writing 2012

About Queen Elizabeth and books!

I haven't dabbled in Francophone African Lit much; this novel is by a Djibouti writer

Yes, I judge books by its cover... and I bet this is a good judgment

Lahiri's writing is as captivating as Adichie's; #readTheNamesaketoo

What an intriguing title! Can't wait to read!

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Known World of African Literature

I have been an avid reader since childhood. I was one of those kids who signed up for the summer reading program at the library once school let out.... My passion for literature shows because it turned out that I became an English teacher. I am somewhat of a dreamer and very dramatic so books allow me to enrich that personal side of me. I would say I say I enjoy fiction of all sorts. At times I get into series phase, then I get into a genre phase but overall it's always fiction. One genre I never got into until high school was African Literature. As much as I read as a youth, that was one textual area that I never thought of. I was very much immersed in my Ghanaian background through music, film, food, etc.. but I never thought to put literature and Africa together. The closest we got to African stories in school was through folktales and even then we never read that part of the English textbook. In 10th grade, on our school reading list for IB was Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe. My dad took me to Waldenbooks to pick it up and nonchantly mentioned that he read the book when he was in secondary school.

And you never thought to suggest it me dad?
As much as you see me reading here everyday?

I blamed him and my momma because they both read the book and never recommended it to me... I was reading every thing under the sun except for African texts because I didn't realize it existed and my parents themselves didn't think much to suggest it at all.
Well, once you know better, you read better. And I have read a plentitude of texts written by African authors. And I find a way to sneak a short story or two in my classroom curriculum though they probably don't give a damn and read Hunger Games under their desk instead.

Either way African fiction has a way of sweeping you off your feet and placing you in a dusty path of imaginative goodness. I have been to many countries in Africa through numerous books; I have learned phrases, foods, behaviors through amazing writing. I believe everyone should read at least one contemporary African text in their lifetime-- in addition to Things Fall Apart!!

Reading allows me to get away and learn more about myself and the world. Reading about Africa reminds me that there is so much that continent has to offer the world and so much more that I want to experience there.

My girlfriends and I are reading "Half of a Yellow Sun" for our monthly book club. Read their "shorter" comments on African Lit here and here.

Some of my favorite African texts (by African authors)

Half of a Yellow Sun, Purple Hibiscus, and That Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
The Famished Road by Ben Okri
The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives by Lola Shoneyin
Changes by Ama Ata Aidoo
The Poisonwood Bible (not by an African author but a worthy and important read...) by Barbara Kingsolver
Measuring Time by Helon Habila (my English professor at Mason!)
Nervous Conditions by Tsitsi Dangaremba
The Joys of Motherhood by Buchi Emecheta
Voice of America by E.C. Osondu

Trust me, they are good books. I'm an English teacher.

I'm reading this again because I finished rereading "Yellow Sun" Sorry girls!

Give me another suggestion to add to my collection:)