Birthday Randomness and annoucement…

Today is my birthday so what better way to begin my day than with a random little blog post to celebrate Red Butterfly Chronicles 1st year as well. I started this blog last year as part of my turning 35 journey. Now 35 has come and gone but the journey of life and writing will still continue for me. I must admit it has been a very blessed year and I have grown so much both personally and professionally. It has been amazing!

Recently I have been doing a lot of think about beginnings, newness, and especially new years. Though the calender changes and a new year begins for everyone, birthdays are our official personal restart date. This year it shocks me when I think about how much I have changed in the last 12 months, how I think differently and want different thinks. Life has a beautiful way of opening our eyes even if we don’t think its so beautiful at the time of reveal. However, I see myself much differently than I have before. I have closed a lot of doors, ended some unhealthy relationships, began new projects, published my first book, and began to brand Red Butterfly Publishing. I’ve a long way and still have a long way to go on my continuing journey.

As we all know we always have to let go of something to allow something else to grow, so I have decided to let go of redbuttaflydiva.com. It was my first blog and my baby but I am just now feeling it anymore, and honestly it’s not getting any attention anymore. So this will now be my only blog and I have a good feeling about it.

Lastly I would like to thank everyone that has been here from day one to my last subscriber and reader. I really appreciate the time you take to read this blog.

Lou Hargrove

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Bringing sexy back

Last week I made a post and I mentioned getting my swag back. For some reason I didn’t take into consideration that I was self-publishing and actually had to go out and promote. I had gotten so comfortable in my tights and sweats now that tax season is over, it took me off guard when it was time to reach into my bag of tricks and bring it together for press, promotional pictures, open mic events, and interviews. I actually had that moment of “I don’t feel like it”. It had been awhile since I had gotten dressed to go anywhere other than work or rehearsal, and with working and trying to finish the book it was just way too much to do more than shower and jump into some clothes to go about my day. However, once I started spending more than 10 minutes in the mirror I remembered how nice it was to actually take the time to slip into something pretty and sexy. Taking that few extra minutes in the mirror does a lot to add a little boost to my confidence as a woman. Now don’t get me wrong I wasn’t necessarily feeling a lack of confidence, to be honest I had been working so much over the last year or so feeling feminine and sexy just was no longer a priority. There was so much on my plate that I ignored myself as a sacrifice to get things done. I was surviving on 2-hrs of sleep a day and as much as I needed make up to hide the bags under my eyes I just didn’t have time, not to mention trying to maintain my natural hair I wore a turban or a bun any chance I could just to make sure I would be out the door as fast as possible. (Isn’t amazing what part of ourselves we give up to make ends meet.)

Thankfully those time are not behind me and while I am still in the midst of an extremely busy schedule I am also forced to look at myself twice in the mirror, especially now that I have to be conscious of my brand and I want to be seen. Now I know it’s nothing wrong with being lacks at times but now when it doesn’t feel natural and most times I was too tired and worn out to feel feminine or sexy. But today is new day and I know that it is never too late to create change and why not start in the spring where everything is fresh new and beautiful. So I will be keeping in touch with a few new purchases, hair, nails and even an occasional OOTD or OOTF. I can’t wait to see how my own progress will move into the summer months.

See you Soon,

Lou Hargrove

Updates, Thoughts, and What’s to come…

I just wanted to stop in and let you know what’s been going on and what’s been coming up. Over the last month I have been making a lot of changes. If you read my last post or follow me on social media you already know that I just published my first book of poetry titled Passion & Turmoil (available on Amazon and Kindle). The book shares a journey of passion, lust, love, and vulnerability. Lately I have been promoting interviewing and marketing this and I have also been working on a few other projects that I will be announcing soon. In the meantime I have also been thinking about different ways to enhance my presence here on Word Press and social media. So you will be seeing a lot more of me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Tumblr. Please stay connecting because it will definitely get interesting.

On a more personal note! Writing this book have meant a lot of changes, I must admit that I am not the same woman that I was walking into this project. I have learned more about love, myself, and about my talents as a poet/writer. I will discuss this more later in a separate blog post but it has given me a great deal of motivation for the ideas that I listed earlier. I admit that it is a very wonderful filling when you realize what you are really here for and how all of the questions in your heart and mind have been there for a reason so I will be sharing a lot of that here on this blog.

Also I have realized that I have gotten a lot lazier over the last few years when it comes to my appearance. I have been working so much that I was just going with the flow of things, however now that I am doing different promotional events and working to brand my business I am going to have to step things back up a notch, so please stop by redbuttaflydiva.com for info on my little shopping sprees and beauty finds. You can watch me get my swag back. Also email me at redbutterflypublishing@gmail.com with any blog ideas you would like to read.

See you soon,

Lou Hargrove

Monday Motivation: Know Your Power (guest post)

Red Butterfly Chronicles

We often second guess ourselves in an attempt to make excuses of why we can’t accomplish any of our goals. Whether the goal is a career change, a scenic change, even financial stability, there is always a huge excuse standing in the way. Don’t deny it, we all have been there. Too many woman believe that they are inferior. Now, I’m not trying to be the next Stacy Dash, but I wouldn’t be considered so open-minded if I didn’t take into consideration some of the points she made, or at least what I felt she was “trying” to make. I felt as though she was saying, as a woman, even though statistics are against her, she is still in control of her future and will not let anyone put a limit on what she could achieve. Yes, the execution of her statement was a bit shaky but don’t sleep on…

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Monday Motivation: Know Your Power (guest post)

We often second guess ourselves in an attempt to make excuses of why we can’t accomplish any of our goals. Whether the goal is a career change, a scenic change, even financial stability, there is always a huge excuse standing in the way. Don’t deny it, we all have been there. Too many woman believe that they are inferior. Now, I’m not trying to be the next Stacy Dash, but I wouldn’t be considered so open-minded if I didn’t take into consideration some of the points she made, or at least what I felt she was “trying” to make. I felt as though she was saying, as a woman, even though statistics are against her, she is still in control of her future and will not let anyone put a limit on what she could achieve. Yes, the execution of her statement was a bit shaky but don’t sleep on it.
Women are powerful beings. Unfortunately, many of us tend to forget this because of what we are told. But, today is a new day. Today you must remember that your accomplishments have no limits and the big excuses standing in your way are just a figment of your imagination.

To help get things started here’s my top ten quotes, spoken by powerful black women, to help inspire change this week. Jot them down and place them in places you can always refer back to when you need that little extra boost.

1. “Don’t wait around for other people to be happy for you. Any happiness you get you’ve got to make yourself.” – Alice Walker

2. “Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher.” -Oprah Winfrey

3. “Always be smarter than the people who hire you.” -Lena Horne

4. “No person has the right to rain on your dreams.” -Marian Wright Edelman

5. “We may encounter many defeats but we must not be defeated.” -Maya Angelou

6. “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” -Alice Walker

7. “I have a lot of things to prove to myself. One is that I can live my life fearlessly.” -Oprah Winfrey

8. “The greatest gift is not being afraid to question.” -Ruby Dee

9. “Faith is the first factor in a life devoted to service. Without it, nothing is possible. With it, nothing is impossible.” – Mary McLeod Bethune

10. “Defining myself, as opposed to being defined by others, is one of the most difficult challenges I face.” -Carol Moseley Braun

Sources:
http://www.forharriet.com

Yolanda Hargrove
Follow her blog at beyoncepostermain (2)Simply Stated yhargrove.wordpress.com

Monday Motivation: My First Book

Actually I’m not quite shore if this is Monday motivation or a personal post, but I hope it motivates someone just the same. This weekend I announce the release of my first book of poetry Passion & Turmoil a collection of love poems. I am so excited because this is not only a book release but it is also the official launch of Red Butterfly Publishing and this is just the beginning. I am amazed at how much you can accomplish if you just believe in yourself. I know have full understanding now when people say “God isn’t going to bless you until your ready.” During time it took me to get the nerve to write this book and publish I admit I have grown so much as a woman, writer, business owner, and individual. We all get to a point in our lives when we realize that we must do what we were meant to do in order to be happy. So just as a moment of reflection I want you to think about what are things that make you happy or what is the career that you want that you keep putting on the back burner? Those still small voices are inside of us for a reason and we have to take the time to stop and listen.

Lou Hargrove

Monday Motivation: Finding Our Beauty

In the last few weeks I have seeing a lot of discussions about black women and their natural hair feeling insecure which I discussed on Friday on my blog redbuttaflydiva.com, the show Being Mary Jane has been doing a great job discussing the topic and black women and beauty, and last night’s Black Girls Rock. These different notes and conversations has really had me thinking.

Last weekend I performed in a For Colored Girls at one of the near by colleges and each time I perform in this play and listen to each poem that performed and talk to other members of the cast it really makes me wonder about black women and our definition of beauty. There are a few characters in the play that clearly define their beauty by their sexuality and their being wanted by a man. In the end they do find what they need on the inside but how often in real life do we not find the beauty and validation that we need on the inside. When do we stop looking for the attention or approval from others to feel beautiful.

What really concerns me so must is not just the validation seeking, because we all have been guilty at some point, but the fact that we will never find it. There is and always will be someone out their with an opinion of how black women should look and what defines our beauty. When the truth is we are ones that define our own beauty. Whether we are darker, lighter, weaved, relaxed, or natural our beauty is defined by the women we see in the mirror and how we feel about her. There will always be someone out there that will never approve to anything that we do, but when you find that beauty deep down in your being nothing else matters.

We must be willing to love and celebrate ourselves when no one else is, because how we feel about the woman that stares back at us each morning in the mirror is beautiful. The sooner we are able to realize this the less weight the negativity that surrounds these topics will have.

Lou Hargrove