#JustSaying

I will share my personal opinion as well as those of other writers on thought provoking issues. In other words I’m #justsaying what I think. Remember, we can always agree to disagree

I Wish I Never Had To Work, Literally!

Angry businesswoman biting the keyboard

Angry businesswoman biting the keyboard

Why am I working? I mean really? My husband can afford to take care of me and the kids without me ever lifting a finger. But of course I chose to work just to be miserable.Let me break this down for you;
If you are working for yourself, i.e an entrepreneur, I am probably not talking to you. You set your own time, you put in all the effort and know that if it yields profit, its all in your favor. You do not fear that your employer will let you go and, you probably do not have to deal with fast mouth, not so pleasant co- workers who make jokes that you do not consider funny. I sure am not talking to you. However, if you work in an organization where you do not only have to manage clients but also co-workers, employer, managers, etc., then this one is for you. Below are a few reasons why I hate going to work. Continue reading

My 3 City Crush This Valentine

Saint Tropez city, Mediterranean Sea, France

Saint Tropez city, Mediterranean Sea, France

1) In St. Tropez, at the heart of the French Riviera, the sun really does shine brighter and the Mediterranean is truly bluer. Or maybe that’s just the effect of the chilled rosé going to your head when you visit St. Tropez. If long leisurely lunches and days spent poolside interrupted only by shopping for Provencal handicrafts are what led you to St. Tropez travel, the historic charms of this seaside town will be a bonus.
What to Do in St. Tropez

The list of things to do includes rest, relax, eat, and drink, but there are also some sights to see in St. Tropez:

• Place de Lices
• Chapelle Ste. Anne
• Vieux Porte
• Pointe du Capon
• La Ponche
• Museum of l’Annonciade
When to Go to St. Tropez

If you want to travel to St. Tropez when it is its most glamorous and buzzing, then go in July or August. You’ll find, however, that hoteliers are well aware how coveted their rooms are then, and you’ll pay dearly to stay. The weather is still good in May, June, and September. Off-season St. Tropez can be charming, even if you can’t expect beach weather.
DON’T MISS

Partying like a celeb and spending like one too—a beer will cost you a whopping $33!—at Les Caves du Roy, the hottest nightclub in town, inside the hottest hotel in town, the Byblos. (Tip: Be sure to dress the part!)

Soaking up the glamorous scene and celeb-spotting on popular Nikki Beach.

Perusing a collection of some 4,500 rare and endangered species of butterflies at La Maison des Papillons. Continue reading

Gabrielle Bernstein: 3 Steps to Make Your Facebook Page a More Positive Place

gab

Internet haters getting you down? It happens to the best of us, even bloggers like Gabrielle Bernstein! Read on for her three steps on how to move past the negativity and make your social media space a more positive place. Then, tune in Sunday at 11 a.m. ET/PT to watch Gabrielle and a panel of what Oprah calls the “next generation” of spiritual voices tackle some of life’s big questions.
Last Monday, I got a frantic call from my mother. She breathlessly told me: “There’s someone on your Facebook fan page writing nasty things about you! But don’t worry, honey, I responded and set her straight.” I laughed and said, “Thanks for sticking up for me, Mom, but that’s not how I handle negativity on the Internet.” I went on to explain that, as a spiritual student and teacher, I must practice what I preach. By bringing my spiritual practice to these situations, I intuitively know how to handle haters on the Internet. I helped my mother understand that engaging in the negativity only invests in the negativity. Rather than defend myself and fight back, I’ve learned to see these encounters as divine spiritual assignments. Through compassion, defenselessness and forgiveness, I’ve come to see how mindfully dealing with Internet haters can only strengthen my spiritual faith.

As the universe would have it, that wouldn’t be my only conversation about Internet haters that week. The following day I was in Chicago shooting a segment for Oprah’s “Super Soul Sunday.” What was one of Oprah’s first questions to my panel? She asked how we handle haters on the Internet! I immediately responded, “Forgive and delete.” I explained how I use forgiveness and several other spiritual principles to shine light on the darkness of the Internet.

If you’re anything like my mother, it’s time to put down the boxing gloves and use my three spiritual tools for handling haters online.

Step 1: It’s Not About You
When people attack us on the Internet, many of us immediately assume that the attack has merit and means there’s something wrong with us. I choose to have a different perspective—I like to have compassion for these folks. Let’s face it: A happy person won’t waste his time posting negativity on positive people’s pages. Therefore, we must have a tremendous amount of compassion for these people. Anyone who wastes his time and energy spreading negativity clearly needs more light in his life. Begin your practice by saying a prayer for the person. Simply say: “I pray for you to release your negativity and see love instead. I pray for you to be happy.” This prayer will immediately reconnect you to a sense of compassion and help you let go of your anger.
Continue reading

5 of the Most Inspiring Women on Instagram

What would it mean if the world knew your story—and how would it change you, enrich you? O has partnered with Instagram on a game-changing new initiative, #MyStory, that gives you the chance to find out. Here, five Instagrammers tell us where they’re coming from—and reveal the power of sharing their true selves with millions of others.

Patricia Lay-Dorsey

Photo: Courtesy Patricia Lay- Dorsey

Photo: Courtesy Patricia Lay- Dorsey


“I’ve been an artist for decades and have always preferred to see only the sweet stuff. But now that I’m 73, I want to be a part of what really is. And being a photographer gives me an excuse to meet new people, whether I’m scooting around downtown Detroit or going to an electronic music festival (I’m known as Grandma Techno around here). I view my Instagram as my living room. It’s a place for people to feel safe and live in the present.” —@patricialaydorsey

Alsion Meade

Photo: Courtesy of Allison Meade

Photo: Courtesy of Allison Meade


“I’ve always loved old cars and building things. In sixth grade, I desperately wanted to take shop, but my friends wanted me to take home economics with them, and I followed their lead. I deeply regretted it and decided I was never again going to choose a path just because it was expected of me. Now I’m a welder, artist and firefighter. Women have told me, ‘I thought it was fireman for a reason.’ That’s not okay! I want sixth-grade girls to know they can be firefighters, too.” —@oldsoulstudio

Denisio Truitt

Photo: Courtesy of Denisio Truitt

Photo: Courtesy of Denisio Truitt


“When I got divorced in 2014, I was ready to get out of the Washington D.C. area, where I’d spent my entire adult life. I visited a friend in New Orleans and fell in love with it—the heat, the architecture, the people. It reminded me of Monrovia, Liberia, where I lived for about a year as a child. When I moved here, I felt like my life had come full circle. And the friend? We fell in love, too. Now we co-own a clothing design company. I’m still on a journey, but my hope is that people will see me sharing all parts of myself—as a black woman, as an entrepreneur—and relate, wherever they are on their journey.” —@denisiotruitt

Jenn Zeller

Photo: Courtesy of Jenn Zeller

Photo: Courtesy of Jenn Zeller


“I live on a cattle ranch in South Dakota in the middle of nowhere. It’s a 20-mile round trip to my mailbox. My photographs are a way to show people that a cowgirl isn’t necessarily somebody you’d find at a rodeo—I’m out there bundling up to feed the cows when it’s -30 degrees outside—and to start a conversation about where our food comes from. I want everyone who might not get to visit this beautiful place to see it through me.” —@thesdcowgirl

Tess Holliday

Photo: Courtesy of Tess Holliday

Photo: Courtesy of Tess Holliday


“I’ve been a model for six years. In the industry, people with my body type are usually overlooked, so I use social media to share my life. I’ve gotten bullied with comments like ‘How could you show off your body at your size?’ But I want to motivate someone to look at herself differently—try on a dress she normally wouldn’t wear or do something that scares her. We’re told that when you’re a certain size, you’re not allowed to be happy. But I’m showing that I get to do what I love.” —@tessholliday

Culled from Oprah.com

Is Posing Nude Really About Self Confidence or Merely A Dangerous New Trajectory

Zoe in Womens Health Magazine

Zoe in Womens Health Magazine

I posted a photo on Instagram yesterday of Zoe Saldana nude inside the pages of Women’s Health Magazine. On the photo there was an inscription that read “I love skin. I don’t believe the body is something to hide”. This got me thinking and hence the motivation for this post. My first thought was, why not walk around nude since the body is not meant to be hidden? My second thought was own the nude shoot you have been paid to do but do not promote is as if it should be accepted as “normal”. Stay with me here.
ciara

I have chosen four women that I personally love to share in this post because I do believe that these women stand for the improvement and empowerment of young girls the world over. I am also in support of owning your flaws and accepting your body the way it is which is what these covers claim to promote. However, the touch ups and make up used for these shoots do none of that any justice. Sometimes these photos look nothing like the actual people. This then puts further strain on the girls the “nude photos” are supposed to empower.
Nudity has been around for centuries and probably going nowhere. In fact the adult movie industry has been booming since the 70s. The days of Farrah Faucet and Elizabeth Taylor was the commencement of the nude cover boom and it looks like with the likes of Kim Kardashian this will not be going anytime soon. Ten years ago women who posed nude for photos and magazines were supposedly breaking barriers and were prepared for the backlash that came with it, nowadays it has become normal to just go ahead and take your damn clothes off. It’s not as embarrassing, not as shameful.
bey

If anything it exudes confidence. Am I too old fashioned to get it? I consider myself very liberal, very open to change and very accepting of it, but please I do not want to see your vagina every time I turn around, or do I? Perhaps I should look away? But it’s everywhere, how do I avoid it? Here’s the question I m trying to pose? Is the idea behind this current, more popular nudity crave expected to be accepted and respected? What exactly is being sold with such magazine covers? Am I to be comfortable with my daughters posing nude or aspiring to do so?
Naomi Campbell, Tyra Banks and other models have walked the runways around the world to panties and bras trying to sell exactly those “panties and bras”. I guess I can be forced to understand that aspect of it. They can’t sell lingerie with coats and sweaters on. They and such other models in those circumstances get a pass. But the idea of just standing butt naked and being plastered in front of a magazine that millions of people will see? Should these women be embarrassed, should they start to say NO to the magazine owners and photographers by refusing those nude shoot proposals? Would they in doing so be interfering with their own art an that of the photographers? I know that this is an ongoing topic in which no resolution or conclusion would be gotten- at least not today, not in this post, not in this era at least. Kendall Jenner, Gigi Hadid, Cara Delavigne and the youngies in the modelling industry are now raising the bar as well. I simply needed to see how you guys were feeling about all this nudity.
When Paper Magazine first revealed Kim Kardashian’s naked cover (her derriere) on the cover of their magazine, the entire world went ballistic and yes I agree the internet almost got broken. Some were quick to say that it was a wrong move because she was a mother. (Mind you she herself knows that she is a mother) Others wondered whether her husband was fine with the decision. Later it was rumored that all the shoots that she accepted were approved by her husband.
kim

Does that mean that men do not really mind their significant others being nude in magazines? Is it a way to show off how beautiful they are, or strictly as a means of business? What about those men that would not approve of their wives, fiancees, girlfriends do such? Are they insecure?
Here’s the verdict. If you must do it, be tasteful about it, don’t bare it all out but if you had the choice, refrain.

Titi Sonuga My Woman Crush With A Message

speaking at the inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari in Nigeria (2015)

speaking at the inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari in Nigeria (2015)

I lead this post with this title and with this picture so that those who have not heard the name Titilope Sonuga will not only take her seriously but understand the magnitude of her work. Her website http://titilope.ca/ says more about her than I will ever be able to write, not in too many words though, but in just enough words.
I first saw Titi in season 2 of the web series “Gidi Up”. I was like ‘Oh ok, the girl is acting as a poet? that’s fresh”. At least she was not posing as a rich businesswoman or fashion designer or publicist or model manager (was just bored seeing those roles being played and replayed). A poet? yum!. She exuded confidence with her original locs, whether it was her natural God given hair or some braids, she simply screamed authentic. Then I watched her and her other cast members on the couch on talk show “The Juice” hosted by Toolz and confirmed she was actually a poet and not merely playing one. Hooked I was
titi 4
The award winning Poet, author and spokesperson continues to inspire as she partnered with Intel to empower young girls with the #shewillconnect initiative with the help of technology and the internet, while giving back to the world. What’s not to love? See the she will connect website http://shewillconnect.intel.com/

There is something about this lady that I am yet to put my fingers on. I am a lover of words myself perhaps that’s the attraction? The partnership for the progression of girls maybe? She seems to live her very own authentic life, what could be more attractive? Titi has tons of awards to her name for her amazing work as a poet and writer, she seeks to empower women with her words and encourage us to love ourselves just the way we are, and for that Titi Sonuga, you are my woman crush today.
Learn more about Titilope Sonuga on her website above and follow her on instagram @titilope
I know I ‘ll meet her soon, in fact I ll hunt her down whenever I visit Nigeria and I m sure she’ ll be happy to meet me- a fan.
titi 3

titi beach

Beckham and Hart Twinning for H&M

Why am I so in love with this commercial? Additionally I never thought Kevin Hart was funny until 2014 and I mean that in a good way. Now I am a fan and I have always been a Becham fan, come on, I m Nigerian, we love soccer. Tell me what you think about this commercial below.
XO
Jennifer Mairo

Climb With Remi, Cause After My Heart

Remi Abere at Mount Kilimanjaro

Remi Abere at Mount Kilimanjaro

Climb With Remi Facebook Page

This is a public service announcement to all Nigerians at home and in Diaspora, all Africans who want to fight against poverty and sufferings, and to citizens of every country around the world who acknowledge that suffering to one is suffering to all of humanity. The Climb With Remi initiative is one that plans to show Remi Abere, alongside friends, family and supporters as they climb mountain Kilimanjaro for a cause. At 49 years of age, She first climbed the same mountain last year, risking it all (work, four kids, husband etc.) just to challenge herself and to achieve personal fulfillment.
remi 6

This year she is embarking on the journey a second time and this time it’s not just for fun, its for a cause. The #climbwithremi initiative plans to use this medium to raise awareness and funds for the various internally displaced persons (IDP)camps across Nigeria. The website launches in a few weeks but you can still be a part of the movement right now.
climb logo

Here’s how; Follow Climb With Remi on twitter @climbwithremi, like the Facebook page in link above and sign up for the newsletter on the website page www.climbwithremi.com and get updates and progress as the climb approaches.You can also make donations on the website and share updates on social media with the hashtag #climbwithremi. Let everyone know that you are part of such an amazing extravaganza. If you have ever wanted to be part of a cause that makes a real difference but somehow was unsure which organization or which cause, this might be the perfect fit for you.
For this great initiative my Mazel of the week goes to Remi Abere for coming up with such a plan and for giving back. You continue to inspire.
Tag me on instagram and twitter @jennifermairo with your post so I’ll know you are in.
Thanks
XO
Jennifer Mairo

Kanye West Can Be President And I Will Be Voting

yeez first

Many of us know Mr West as the unapologetic rapper that will say exactly what he is thinking. He has challenged president Barack Obama, taken the nicrophone from Taylor Swift and suggested that she was not worthy of the award that she had just been given because Beyonce his long time friend was clearly more worthy. Kanye has also said that former president George Bush did not care about black people (after hurricane Katrina). You have to be really be unafraid to make such comments and do such things.
In recent times, Mr West is known as the husband of Kim Kardashian and the father of North West. He is also her stylist and fashion influencer. Many people love to hate on their relationship but I love them and do not stand in judgement of their personal relationship.
Let me give a little bit of history. Kanye West is a rapper that I have always loved. His lyrics go way beyond b**** and n***** and money and fame and clubs and don perignon. West has always used his music to shed light on race and power and the image of the black individual in a country where blacks struggle to stay true to themselves (topic of another post). Simply put, I have loved Kanye West from the second he stepped foot into the music scene.
Now let me get to the main reason behind this post. Kanye West running for president. When MTV announced that Kanye West would be receiving an honorary award at the 2015 VMAs, presented to him by Taylor Swift, the same lady who he had just a few years before rudely taken the mic from at the same award, the entire world went crazy, many tuned in just to see the reaction on both their faces when the magic would finally happen. Taylor did a good job and Yeezy (kanye’s nickname) blushed and smiled until he stepped onto the stage and hell broke loose. Well, so many people say. I just think his speech was sometimes too confusing to someone who may not love him as much as I do. Mr West took 5 minutes before he could say anything as he held on to the mic, more like for dear life with anxiety while he gathered his thoughts, rather than for the screams the fans hollered.(although Yeezus likes to put on a good show) First I thought “ok Kanye, start talking”, but then I realized that the poor guy needs an outlet and struggles with explaining his position on things because of his somewhat ADD nature. (I recently posted his very first interview with MTV, and you can see how he struggled to express himself every time he lost his train of thought. See it
So for me, it was not surprising at all, I just prayed that he would be able to get his thoughts out.
And so the speech began with bruh! bruh! (how black people say bro, as in brother). and my heart started beating fast. Note that MTV did not alter or cut off Mr West’s speech of at least 10 minutes while we all watched him make some amazing comments and sometimes called some people out e.g he said that MTV kept replaying the fact that Taylor Swift would be presenting him with the award because they knew that their ratings would go up, he also said that he probably would not have taken the microphone from Ms Swift that time if he had been a father and had understood that Ms Swift was someone else’ daughter, and then right at the very end of his speech, he made the announcement that he would be running for President in 2020. Mouth agape the entire audience and the entire world of social media went ballistic. I was screaming at the top of my lungs at home. Like wtf just happened?
yeezy 1

Here’s the verdict. If Donald Trump can run for president (whom I love but think might not be prepared- needs more education on policy issues) then why cant Mr West? If Ronald Reagan, one of the most cited presidents in republican history could be President and he was an actor at the time he ran, then why can’t a rapper? Oh because he is a black man? Try black educated man. Or because Kim Kardashian is not qualified to be a first lady? (haters beware, you all hate on her but secretly admire her- take a seat). These people cannot continue to be judged for mistakes they made one hundred years ago. I do see how the Iranians, French and other countries will look at America if this ever happened though. Wait, Kim’s ancestors are from Armenia, the middle east, her being first lady might somewhat be the start of new peaceful relations with Iran and other Muslim nations( I say this very seriously), then talking about France, Kanye and Kim know all the designers in Paris, attend Paris fashion week judiciously(I wonder if President West will have the time to do any of those anymore) etc. Think about it America, this is all beginning to make sense and might be better for the nation.

I love Kanye West, I love his message, and if he comes up with his plan on policy issues, jobs, the middle class, education, the debt ceiling, health care etc. and further tones down just one single notch and not have his occasional outbursts?, of course I am willing to hear them and vote for him. One hundred percent. Shoot, sticking to the same thing that we know has not worked and brought us to where we are today, besides, he will have other experts assisting him in these decisions anyway. So hell, I m in. I am Jennifer Mairo and I approve this post

Black Teens Used As Target In Shooting Range

SHOOTING

The conversations we are having about our young children need to change and all children need to be educated on the dangers that they may face as they step out each day. Why allow a black man in if you know black boys are the target? To mock him? Too creepy!

Should I Buy My Own Engagement Ring?

ring

My fiance proposed in April with no engagement ring. He wanted to just go down to the courthouse and marry me plenty of times. I’m not a materialistic person at all. Even when we do get married, I probably wouldn’t wear my wedding ring every day, but I want my engagement ring now. My fiance is still in school and lives with his dad and can’t afford it now. What do you think about me buying my own ring and he gives me the money later on? —Anonymous

You want an engagement ring. You don’t have to apologize for that and it doesn’t make you materialistic, at all. Don’t feel bad about wanting a ring as a symbol of your commitment. The ring isn’t everything, but it is absolutely “a thing,” a cultural tradition (three-fourths of American brides wear diamond engagement rings, according to Kenneth Gassman, president of the Jewelry Industry Research Institute). It’s entirely normal to desire an engagement ring, even if you don’t plan to wear it every day once you are married.

Who pays for the ring isn’t really a big deal, even if it’s an expense that usually falls on the man in heterosexual relationships. Honestly, diamond engagement rings are a relatively modern concept. It’s actually the result of a marketing campaign by De Beers Consolidated Mines that was crafted in a Mad Men-esque marketing agency circa 1938. Have you heard the line, “A diamond is forever?” In 1999, Advertising Age named it the slogan of the 20th century. Continue reading

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