How To Shop Black-Owned Businesses For Everyday Life

April 29, 2015
How To Shop Black-Owned Businesses For Everyday Life
In the midst of all of the publicized turmoil that Black America is facing, a lot of people have decided that they want to support more Black businesses. After the Michael Brown verdict, several people decided to get together and boycott big business on Black Friday, with good success. So now that Black Friday and the holidays over and the lives of Black people still aren't being valued as they should, are you still supporting black-owned businesses?

When you hear 'black-owned business' I'm sure that most people think of natural hair products and possibly a few gifts and trinkets. In your everyday life, however, hair products and trinkets aren't going to help you get through the day. Think about what brands are in your shower, on your face, in your pantry, and in your lunch boxes. I bet that I could guess at least half of the products in your house because they are the products in everyone's house. People have told me that it is too difficult to find black-owned businesses for everyday life, therefore I have come up with a list of my favorites to help everyone out. I hope that the way that I have organized this list helps your rethink black-owned businesses and helps point out the importance of circulating the black dollar within the black community.

Post-Traumatic Slave Disorder: Aspects of Slavery That Are Still Affecting Black Americans Today (Part I)

April 28, 2015
Post-Traumatic Slave Disorder:  Aspects of Slavery That Are Still Affecting Black Americans Today
Why is it that when a Black person talks about slavery, everyone in the room seems to get so uncomfortable? 

In school, we learn all about the several wars that America has engaged in and the devastation that came from war, but for some reason talking about the devastation that the American slave trade caused on Black Americans and Africa is seen as being taboo and 'anti-progressive'.

"Why are you people still talking about slavery? It was a thing of the past. I didn't enslave your ancestors."

Why are we as a nation suppose to forget almost 250 years of our history? The holocaust occured for 5 years and was absolutely horrific. If you lived in Germany, you wouldn't dare go up to a family member of a Holocaust victim and say "Why are you people still talking about the Holocaust? You should just forget about it because we can never move forward with people like you." Did you know that there is a Holocaust Remembrance Day? On April 16th (and in some places the whole week), Holocaust victims are commemerated and their are activities to show respect.

Now, I would never compare the devastation of the Holocaust and American Chattel Slavery, as these are two completely separate parts of history. It does make me wonder, however, why there is no slavery commemoration in America for all of the barbaric crimes, mutilations, lynchings, and medical injections committed against the ancestors of Black Americans.

Is slavery really a thing of the past? I say no. Epigenetically and psychologically, there is no way that 250 years of oppresion and torture can ever be forgotten, especially since we are still facing the detriment of chattel slavery today. Here is Part I of aspects of slavery and post-slavery that are still prevelant in America today. To all of the self-proclaimed "New Blacks" out there (cough, couch Raven...cough, cough Simone), you might want to take a seat and listen:

Going the Distance: A Letter On Long Distance Relationships

April 27, 2015
Going the Distance: A Letter On Long Distance Relationships

[A Letter from Alexandria of MasonAlexandria.wordpress.com]

Twenties. The years that the most change happens. 

The years of complete bliss, responsibility, living, adulthood, freedom, commitment, yes oxymorons in a nutshell.

For my twentieth birthday I promised myself to be better. I've lived up to this by getting closer to God, loving myself, loving others, and trying to stay grounded and focused. I wasn't sure the guy I was interested in at the time would make the cut...

He did. We now are in a long distance relationship and I love him more each day.

As an almost 21 year old, it's a bit early to say this may be it, but he is the reason I can say I am in my first adult relationship. I fell in love with his friendship, his support, his gentleness, his humor, the list goes on. So when it was time for me to leave for Buenos Aires, I was most terrified to be apart for 5 months just as we were swinging into things.

Since I've been here we've gotten so much closer and it seems a little too easy that in two months I'll be able to touch his face again. Being abroad certainly was a test, but it's such challenges that you have no choice but to rise to to meet the occasion. While I can't go into extensive detail, here are a few ways we're thriving.

Quirky, Brown & 20-Something Panel: "What is the Best Advice You Have Received in Your 20s?"

April 24, 2015
The Best Advice For 20-Somethings
The twenties are some of the most important years of a person's life.

You learn, your grow and you figure out that life may not be exactly what you thought it was. What you do in your twenties can define your whole life. Everyone could use some advice on how to best navigate your 20s, so I have put together a Quirky, Brown & 20-Something Panel of a few of my favorite bloggers to tell the best advice they have received:

The Frugal Girl's Guide to Juicing

April 21, 2015
[Also featured on Dear Darrica. Check out her blog here!]

It is no secret that there are several benefits to juicing. For those who hate eating vegetables, juicing could be your dream come true! This was the problem that I had in my household. My boyfriend, Matt is no big fan of any vegetable. As healthy as he looks, he cannot stand them. Anytime that we go out to eat, he always wastes the waiter's time by asking "does it have any tomatoes, onions, peppers, celery, etc?" I, on the other hand, really do like vegetables, but find it hard to find the time to eat them with my busy schedule. Matt and I therefore decided that it was time to invest in a juicer. As a young couple who is fresh out of college however, we definitely were wary about the cost of juicing. Juicing can be VERY expensive, there is no lying about that. But, as a self-proclaimed Frugal Diva, I have come up with a guide to help you chew down the cost of juicing so that you can make it a part of your daily life:

My Beautiful White Skin: Skin Lightening Among Indian Women

April 19, 2015
My Beautiful White Skin: Skin Lightening Among Indian Women
It is no secret that skin-bleaching is a popular and controversial part of many women's beauty routines in India. The culture as a whole seems to be under the impression that a 'whiter' life means a better life. Women in India are not the only ones who practice skin-bleaching or pigment alteration; however, they are probably the most marketed group for whitening cream and other skin lightening treatments. It is not rare to see a slew of commercials and print ads while walking through the country on any given day. Before you start to judge, think about all of the tanning bed commercials that you've seen in America. Some black women also participate in pigment altering tactics as well.

6 Vegan Bloggers To Follow Today (#QuirkyFitFab)

April 19, 2015
6 Vegan Bloggers To Follow Today
Have you ever considered becoming vegan? Before we dive in, lets start of with a definition of the difference between "vegetarian" and "vegan". A Vegetarian is someone who does not eat meat, therefore some may still use eggs and consume dairy products. A Vegan is someone who does not eat any animal products (no meat, no dairy and no eggs). Whether you are considering becoming vegan or just looking for inspiration for your "Meatless Mondays" here are 6 bloggers and cookbook authors that make going vegan look easy:

Love Of Black Culture Is Not Love Of Black People

April 18, 2015
The beloved Amandla Stenberg, also know as Rue in The Hunger Games, has recently release a commentary video called "Don't Cash Crop on My Cornrows". She hits some very great points about the problem of cultural appropriation. I am so happy that it was her that made this video, especially after all of the outrageous comments she received about Rue being portrayed by a black girl.

Rookie Notes on How To Plan Your First Trip Abroad

April 17, 2015
How To Plan Your First Trip Abroad
Hi y’all! My name is Chelsea and I blog over at Rookie Notes where I share my notes on life and the mistakes I’ve made in the hopes that you won’t make the same faux pas. I blog about travel, women’s issues, my language updates in Spanish & Chinese, and random topics like how to apply eyeliner or buying a used car. Also you’ll find some interviews from some pretty ballin’, awesome people.
In this post, I give you my rookie notes on planning your first trip abroad.
How To Plan Your First Trip Abroad

Why I Stopped Waiting For Nicholas Sparks to Write a Love Story About Me

April 17, 2015
The reason that I started Quirky, Brown Love is because I was disappointed in the way that brown love was displayed in mainstream media (if even displayed at all) and it came apparent to me that there are really no movies about quirky, brown 20-somethings going on adventures and falling in love. For some reason in my head, I saw it as the ultimate 'validation' if Nicholas Sparks were to ever write a love story like The Notebook about anyone other than his typical  blonde-haired, American cherry pie couple. As if Nicholas Sparks writing a love story about a brown boy falling helplessly in love with a brown girl as they enjoyed a summer of love, would somehow show the world that we are all equal and that are love isn't as 'gangster' and hard as the media makes it out to be.
The Notebook
I am so tired of watching movies targeted to Black people or Latin American people that have oversexualized women, outrageously unfaithful men and baby mama drama. Why can't we have main characters that are just normal people who don't have sassy attitudes and ulterior motives? I want so badly for there to be a carefree and innocent young, brown female lead in a movie that listens to whatever music she likes, dresses appropriately, loves nature and is actually relatable.

7 Hobbies For The Carefree Soul

April 16, 2015
7 Hobbies For The Carefree Soul

With modern technology and social media coupled with long hours at work, it is rare for someone to have a list of hobbies that they truly enjoy. With summer right around the corner, some people are finding themselves with a little more free time. Most likely, the typical 'watching a movie' or 'going to the mall' have already been played out and you are looking for something that defines you and all of your quirky goodness. If you need a push in the right directions, definitely keep reading my curated list of 7 hobbies for the carefree soul that lives in all of us:

The New Standard for Young, Black Fathers

April 15, 2015
The New Standard for Young, Black Fathers
When you think of young, black father, what do you think of? 

Be honest.

Due to the media and possibly personal experience, you may be thinking of a deadbeat, child support owing black man that could very well be a prime candidate for The Maury Show. As much as I'd like to solely blame the media for this stereotype, statistics do show that black men are the least likely to play active roles in their child's upbringing. Why is this so? I've heard excuses such as not liking the mother of the child or that it is too much responsibility.
Is raising a baby hard work? Yes, without a doubt. Pregnancy, however, is a consequence of having sex, something that we have all learned from that uncomfortable 5th grade sex-ed class (and even if you had a pass out of class that day, I'm sure that you learned it at home).

I am sure that all of the active black fathers out there are tired that they get wrapped into this stereotype. Therefore, it brings me joy when I run across men like La Guardia Cross of the YouTube Sensation, New Father Chronicles.
LaGaurdiaCross New Father Chronicles

You Won't Believe How This Couple is Spending Their Engagement Year...

April 14, 2015

Straight out of a movie, I'd stay, only this is real life. 

When you think of the engagement year, you most likely think of planning a wedding, bachelor/bachelorette parties and updating your friends and family online about the events leading up to your big day. I'm right there with you on that train of thought. Therefore, when I heard that a couple was having an engagement tour, I did not know what to expect.

My first thoughts when I saw the picture above: Is this a movie? What is an engagement tour?

Meet Antoine Kinch and his beautiful bride-to-be, Shaunte Otey. This couple is the prime example of quirky, brown love. Antoine and Shaunte are both 37, both engineers and both have a love for travelling. Therefore, they could think of no better way to spend their year before marriage touring the world to party and gather with their friends. As self-proclaimed "nomads" this couple's engagement is fitting of their adventurous personalities.

Where are they going and where have the gone?
The couple has been partying it up in Milan, Munich, Prague, Paris, China, oh and of course both coasts of the USA. In each location, they only spent a max of 2 nights before continuing on the the next location.

Why this couple is so amazing
I am personally so happy that this couple's engagement year has received lots of recognition, including from The Root and other publications. So many people are under the impression that Black people don't travel or are too afraid to travel, so it is so refreshing to see thing couple in love touring the world.

Want to travel vicariously through the Kinch's? Follow their hashtag #TeandToine on Twitter!

What do you think of this couple's engagement tour?

4 Black Comic Books for The Quirky, Brown Soul

April 13, 2015
In my heart lives a super fan girl.  I dream of one day having the courage to put on a costume and go to ComiCon! One common trait of the carefree spirit is to have several diverse hobbies and interests. Sometimes, nothing seems more fun that taking an afternoon to visit a comic book store and getting lost in an adventure. While these 4 black comic books may not all be on the shelves, they are definitely work checking out!

5 Life Lessons I Learned From Bob Marley (Guest Post)

April 09, 2015

[Written by Kathleen of House of Polynesia]

Reggae music has always been a huge part of my life growing up, I would hear it in the car, school, grocery store, the beach,  it was pretty much everywhere. And local Hawaiian reggae music has a lot of influence from Bob Marley, Steel Pulse, and many other Jamaican Musicians. It is a genre of music that to me brings me to a more mindful place. Many people see Bob Marley as a Jamaican Musician who smoked weed made some songs and then died, but he was so much more than that. He was bi-racial growing up in the rural parts of Jamaica during a time when mixed children were looked down on. He was a peace keeper between the many poor black Jamaican citizens and the aristocratic white government. He eat, slept, drank, and breathed music, I devoured the documentary that us currently on Netflix about his life, it was amazing to see him work and hear his close friends and family give their testimonials about him and his passion for life. So I wanted to share some life lessons I took away from the film.

Why Google Doesn't Consider Black Women to be Beautiful (And Why it is Partially Our Fault)

April 03, 2015
By now, every black millennial has probably conducted a Google search for "beautiful women" or "beautiful men" in order to prove a shock factor point to their friends that the only people that the world considers to beautiful are blonde, white women and six-pack wearing white men. I've conducted this same search several times throughout different months and this is what I found:

About Us

Quirky, Brown Love is a media outlet for quirky, brown millennials. EST 2014.

Email Bryanda Law, Editor-in-Chief
editor@quirkybrownlove.com