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Freedom Friday: The “I Wish You” Edition

Hello Everyone! 

2012 is only two days away.  Can you believe it? 

I am happy to say that I had a solid year.  And I am truly grateful.  Who knows what life will bring next year, but I am ready for the next phase in my journey.  And I would like to thank each of you for sharing bits and pieces of the journey with me. 

So from me to you, I wish you…

Love….that is abundant, unselfish and loyal

Peace…that is comforting and guards your heart and mind at all times

Joy…that is overflowing 

Kindness…to have generosity, patience and understanding in your interactions with other

Courage…to speak up for yourself and others who cannot and the endurance to follow-through to the end

Good Health…habits that favorably affect the mind, body and spirit

Dreams…that you don’t give up on and keep pursuing

Happy New Year, ThatKellieGirl

Check out some  (lower cost) New Year’s Eve events after the jump.  And enjoy this beautiful song from Janelle Monae, from me to you. :-)


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Freedom Friday: The Shutdown Edition



Hello Folks,

All I can say is that it is hectic right now with this government shutdown.   You can cut the  tension with a knife.  Everyone is holding their breathe….

To be quite candid with you, I am really angry about this situation.  Due to ideological differences and political posturing, Americans will now have to muddle through this situation.  And it only breads more contempt for the government, political parties and the political process.  The effect is bigger than not getting a pay check.  

However, instead of getting upset and worrying about the situation, we must to take a “victor”  rather than “victim” attitude.  If anything, this situation makes it more real to me that we have to have faith in ourselves and begin to strengthen our families and communities.  Our livelihoods are too dependent upon other people who do not know us and have little in common with us.  We must begin to build strong, community networks so that in times of famine, we are able to sustain ourselves.  In a time of economic uncertainty and political change, we first have to have faith that everything is going to be alright.  Second, courage to believe that we have everything within ourselves to provide for ourselves and our communities.  And lastly, more than ever, we must show our humanity towards each other.  

One last thing, turn off the radio and the TV!  Hearing too much of this mess only heightens our fears and anxiety.  Instead, get out and enjoy the weekend.

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Freedom Friday: The Independence Edition

Y’all ready for that long Fourth of July weekend?!  I am sure am. I know there are some of you out there who might not prescribe to celebrating the Fourth of July.  And I can respect your right to do this.    However you define your independence, it is important that we understand this complex history of these United States of America.  We are inextricably connected to this country, so we must learn from the past in order to  make this country even better. 

For those of you on the prowl for something to do, here some spots that will be jumping this weekend. 

Happy Independence Day! :-) 

Start the weekend off with “LIVE! from Busboys: Open Mic/Talent Showcase” hosted by The Divine, Ms. Ne’a Posey.  This is an Open Mic for ALL PERFORMERS, not just poets! Whether you’re a musician, comedian, dancer, actor/actress, magician, or any other type of performer – we want to see what you’ve got!

Friday, July 2

Busboys & Poets

1390 V St. NW


5 bucks

Live! from Busboys takes place the first Friday of every month


If you don’t know, you are really missing out.  This is one of my most fav events.  For the best in Afro, Latin, Brazilian, House, Disco, and Funk, you need to be at Sol Power.  Your favorite Sol Power All-stars are Stylus, Meistro and the one Hermon Farahi on percussion.  SPECIAL GUESTS: Jahsonic (WPFW / SoulControllers) & DJ Ausar (ATL). Come dressed to sweat to the rhythms of Cuba, Brazil, Puerto Rico & West Africa.


1771 U St, NW

Free before 11 pm, $5 after

Samba whistles, shekeres and cowbells welcome!


I love parades!  It started back when I was a young girl growing up in Ohio.  I always loved floats and the pomp and circumstance of the marching.  So, I am going to check out the America’s National Independence Day Parade taking place on July 4th.  This annual parade consists of invited bands, fife and drum corps, floats, military and specialty units, giant balloons, equestrian, drill teams, VIP’s, national dignitaries, and celebrity participants.

Sunday, July 4

Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th Streets N.W.



The National Archives Building celebrates July 4th with a special reading of the Declaration of Independence, music, and family activities.  The National Archives will commemorate this historic day with Mistress of Ceremonies, Maureen Bunyan, ABC7/WJLA-TV news anchor, and their annual dramatic reading of the Declaration of Independence led by very special guests.

Sunday July 4

The National Archives Building

on the Constitution Avenue steps between 7th and 9th Streets N.W.



The Smithsonian Folklife Festival kicked off last week.  This year, the festival will feature the cultures of Mexico and Asian Pacific Americans.   The goal of the festival is to strengthen and preserve these traditions by presenting them on the National Mall. Tradition-bearers and the public can connect with and learn from one another and, in a respectful way, begin to understand cultural differences and similarities.

June 24 – July 5

National Mall

between Constitution and Independence Avenues

Click here for the full schedule.


Be Safe out there this weekend.

Peace and Blessings!

Freedom Friday: Get Out of the House a.k.a. The Soul Sista Edition

Hey Good People!

I am almost there!  I think I am 95% close to full recovery.  The doctor said I had an upper respiratory infection (isn’t that just a fancy way of saying I have a cold?).  My mom swore I might have walking pneumonia because I was coughing so much.  I do believe these virus’  have an aggressive strain because this thing wouldn’t let me lose!  I was out of the office for a week.  And when I came back (because I was running low on sick leave and still sick), I felt so bad for coughing, hacking and snotting on the train, on the bus, in the office…plain ole EVERYWHERE!  Anyhoo…I am feeling back to my old self, so you might catch me at one of these events.

(I just noticed most of these events are celebrating women!  Let’s support this wonderful events.)

Actor and writer Victoria Rowell discusses and signs her new novel:  Secrets of a Soap Opera Diva.  Many fans of The Young & The Restless know Victoria Rowell as Drucilla Winters. Victoria’s has penned a book based on her former soap actress life. FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

Friday, June 11

Busboys & Poets

1390 V Street NW



Can a Sister Rock A Mic? Festival (CASRAM) kicked off this Wednesday with a phenomenal performances by Dionne Farris & Leah Smith at LIV.  Each day gets better and better.  Tonight, check out LADY X, an all female live artistry of graphic design, projections, paint, fashion, singing, DJs and much more! Featured Artists: Courtney Savoy, Antwanyce Richardson, Rasheeda Johnson with live performances from Megan Livingston (Baltimore) and Carolyn Malachi (DC/Baltimore), projection art by Shantell Martin, graphic design by Dian Horton & Ganesha Varinia, music by DJ Fusion (FuseBoxRadio), DJ C Breeze and DJ Saucee rockin’ the best in hip-hop, house, and more…

CASRAM is Washington DC’s music and arts festival dedicated to amplifying the voice of women in music and beyond. In its 5th year, CASRAM showcases some of the nation’s most talented women emerging in music and the arts.

June 11-12


Click here for the full line-up.


Not a “Soul-Sista” event per se, but I know we can benefit from this… The Digital Capital Week (DCWEEK) is a 10 day festival in Washington DC focused on technology, innovation and all things digital in our nation’s capital.  The mission of Digital Capital Week is to strengthen the capital region’s digital economy through events focused on creativity, technology, entrepreneurship, marketing, content creation, and innovation.

June 11- 20

Digital Capital Week

Click here for the schedule.


As you all know, I just finished reading Wench by Dolen Perkins-Valdez.  Big-ups to my boy Will for letting me know she will be speaking tomorrow at the Chevy Chase Library (Don’t sleep on the DC Library events.) Can’t wait to get my book autographed! :-)

Saturday, June 12

Chevy Chase Library

5626 Conneticut Ave. NW



A non-“Soul Sista” event….This Saturday DEKKA is hosting Popmatic – the first solo exhibition of mixed-media mastermind, Gregg Deal. After launching a successful custom-artwork enterprise, Modern Bird Studios, Gregg is debuting a private collection featuring new, experimental media. Meet the artist at this Saturday’s opening reception.
Saturday, June 12th
Popmatic Opening Reception
1338 U St NW, 2nd floor

RSVP here
A yard sale and bake sale to benefit the Capitol Hip Hop Soulfest take places tomorrow.  Come out to see what goodies you can pick up to help a worthwhile cause.
Saturday, June 12
Riverside Center in Marvin Gaye Park
5200 Fotte St. NE
10AM to 4PM
I am quite excited to attend Out to Launch, during the Food & Wine Festival at National HarborSmart Chicks, Inc. & Biribelle Clothing is hosting an evening of music, fashion and art.
Saturday, June 12
Amber Tree Art Gallery
122 Waterfront St.
Oxon Hill, MD 20745
Pam Grier will sign and discuss Foxy..My Life in Three Acts.  The boo is real interested in attending this event (*gives side-eye*). In this sexy, often shocking, memoir, you will get to know the real Pam Grier in all her battles and triumphs, her disappointments and her victories. This book is broken down into Three Parts: The Early Years, ‘Fros and Freaks, and Finding the Balance.  Pam Grier started her career in the early 1970s, starring in a string of moderately successful women-in-prison films and blaxploitation films, and has generally remained in the public eye, starring in movies such as Coffy, Foxy Brown, and Jackie Brown.
Sunday, June 13th

Busboys & Poets

1390 V Street NW



Don’t forget to check out the World Cup!  Click here and here for some spots where you can catch some games.


WHEW!  This is a lot to get in to this weekend.  You have no excuse to be sitting in the house. Get on outta here!

Enjoy this ode to the soul sistas!  Peace. :-)

Get Some Culture…

This week, Busboys & Poets has a great line-up of speakers.

Service is the rent we pay for living” says preeminent children’s advocate Marian Wright Edelman and this is the motto by which Malaak Compton Rock, dedicated humanitarian and wife of comedian Chris Rock, lives her life.   This evening, April 13th, Malaack will speak about her part memoir and part practical guide, If It Takes a Village, Build One.  It  offers readers insightful advice on everything from how to find just the right volunteer opportunity, how to get kids involved in a life of service, how to research charities, and even how to start a nonprofit, as Malaak did several years ago. 

All of this practical wisdom is grounded in inspirational anecdotes about her own experience with service, including her work with Katrina rebuilding and her recent brainchild, Journey for Change: Empowering Youth Through Global Service, a program for at-risk kids from Bushwick, Brooklyn, which takes teens on a two week service mission  to South Africa to volunteer and experience the world.
The event starts at 6PM.


In 2006 Alice Walker, working with Women for Women International, visited Rwanda and the eastern Congo to witness the aftermath of the genocide in Kigali. Invited by Code Pink, an antiwar group working to end the Iraq War, Walker traveled to Palestine/Israel three years later to view the devastation on the Gaza Strip.  Her testimony is this book, Overcoming Speechlessness: A Poet Encounters the Horror in Rwanda, Eastern Congo, and Palestine/Israel.  You can hear about it tomorrow, April 14th at Busboys & Poets at 6:30PM

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, Alice Walker is the author of more than thirty books including The Color Purple and Sent by Earth. Her writings have been translated into more than two dozen languages. From her essays concerning the civil rights movement to cries for intervention on the Gaza Strip, Walker continually and eloquently calls attention to ignored injustices around the world.

@Busboys & Poets

2021 14th St NW


Emancipation Day 2010

This week, there are several events leading up to the Emancipation Day Holiday that commemorates  the emancipation of slaves within the District of Columbia. 

On April 16 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Compensated Emancipation Act for the release of certain persons held to service or labor in the District of Columbia.  The Act freed about 3,100 enslaved persons in the District of Columbia nine months before President Lincoln issued his famous Emancipation Proclamation.  This historic day was considered the formerly enslaved’s 4th of July.   In 2005, Emancipation Day became an official public holiday in the District.


Monday, April 12

RECOGNITION CEREMONY AND FILM DOCUMENTARY:  Mrs. Loretta Carter Hanes, Reviver of D. C. Emancipation Day 

Charles Sumner Museum, 1201 Seventeenth Street, N.W., Great Hall, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.  Refreshments will be served.  Sponsored by African-American Holiday Association – 202-667-2577.  Free and open to the public.


Thursday, April 15

Wreath Laying Ceremony:  Wreath laying at the African-American Civil War Memorial, 1200 U Street NW at 11AM.  The ceremony will also include re-enactments and a youth choir.


Friday, April 16


RALLY: 11:00 am at Franklin Square (13th & I Streets, NW), speakers include:  Rev. E. Gail Anderson-Holness, Rev. Graylan Hagler, Councilmembers Michael A. Brown, Yvette Alexander and Vincent Gray, Senators Michael Brown and Paul Strauss, Singer –  Luci Murphy and Friends,  and the Washington Youth Choir, Singer Ayesha Dancy and an Emancipation Re-enactment and YOU!

MARCH: 12:30 pm to D.C. Historical Society (9th & K Streets, NW) with Emancipation Film, discussion.  Free and open to the public!


Friday, April 16

2010 Emancipation Day Celebration: DC Almost 150 Years Later : Busboys and Poets, 2021 14th St NW, 4 PM (Langston Room): Celebrate the 148th anniversary of the legal abolition of chattel slavery in Washington, DC: Emancipation Day.  Discuss the significant role that African-American abolition organizers played in the movement to end enslavement in Washington, DC. ONE DC will facilitate an interactive and informative discussion about how the legacy of movement-building for justice and equity is sustained in Washington, DC. RSVP TODAY with ONE DC at or call for more information at 202-232-2915.

View the full list of events here.

Get Some Culture….

Good Morning Everyone!  I hope you had a fabulous weekend as I did (recap forthcoming :-) ).  

This evening at one of my favorite spots,  Busboys and Poet, Sonia Sanchez will read from her new work, “Morning Haiku”.  A collection of haikus that celebrates the gifts of life and mourns the deaths of revered African-American figures in the worlds of music, literature, art, and activism.  She also pays homage to peace workers and civil rights activists from Rosa Parks and Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm to Brother Damu, founder of the National Black Environmental Justice Network.

Sanchez was born Wilsonia Benita Driver in Birmingham, Alabama on September 9, 1934.  She received a B.A. in Political Science from Hunter College in 1955, where she had also taken several creative writing courses. Later, Sanchez completed postgraduate work at New York University where she studied poetry. 

Sanchez has taught as a professor at eight universities across the US. She advocated for the introduction of Black Studies courses in California. Sanchez was the first to create and teach a course based on Black Women and literature in the US. Sanchez was the first Presidential Fellow at Temple University where she began working in 1977, where she held the Laura Carnell chair until her retirement in 1999. She is currently a poet-in-residence at Temple University.

March 22, 2010

@Busboys & Poets

2021 14th St. NW


 This event is free and open to the public.


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