Tag Archives: Family

More Than Just An Address

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More Than Just An Address

By, Ascellia M. Arenas

🔆Cellibrate Black History🔆 I am teaching my classes about pre, during, and post slavery America; Jim Crow Laws; Segregation, and The Civil Rights Movement, this month. I showed them all kinds of realia: film clips, historical documents/photographs, and non-fiction vs fictitious texts about our history. I also taught them that post civil war segregation tactics didn’t end with Dr. King having a dream or Rosa Parks sitting in the front of the bus. Look at this picture for a moment…In that very lot, behind my siblings and me (in front of our property) the Klan used to burn crosses to try to intimidate us and make us move out of our neighborhood. This photo was taken in 1977, in Pembroke Pines, FL. We moved there in 1974. This was one of four properties my father owned (at that time). He wanted to move us to a new neighborhood, an exclusive neighborhood, where we can get a great education and then go to college, like my parents did. We were one of three black families in the entire city that owned homes there. Yes, my parents were friends with the other two couples that owned homes in the quiet suburban neighborhood, too. For years we defended our rights to live on this block, in this quaint little neighborhood, shrouded by pine trees. Imagine that…pine trees in Florida. Times have changed, a little. There are many families living here now, of all races and cultures. That empty lot is completely developed with hundreds of other homes with people living in them of all races, sizes, and varying degrees of intelligence. The neighborhood has grown significantly. My how things change, people change, but some ideas don’t; unless you influence the change. 

If you don’t talk to your children about real life, if you don’t teach them about their history, they will be doomed to repeat it. Make moves… #cellibrationpublishing #AYV2016 #blackhistorymonth 

  

You Good or Nah? 

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You Good or Nah? 

Are You A “Good Black Man” or Nah?

By, Ascellia M. Arenas

It seems that’s the million-dollar question. In the age of “being woke,” increased interest in family involvement, interest in developing community, desire for increased achievement in academia, there is this ideal of what a “good black man” is or should be. How do we define and identify a “good black man?” Well, here are some traits that help us construct an idea about what a “good black man is.”

Community Involvement

A “good black man” understands the important role he plays in the development of our communities. He is present, active, showing leadership with compassion, and is vocal about how he and his community is perceived.

Fame & Popularity

A “good black man” does not have to be famous to be popular. Who he is as an individual is unique and remarkable; hence, worthy of respect. A man who is visible in the community, making a difference, and helping to bring about positive change can have remarkable popularity without necessarily being “famous.” He can be highly regarded, and respected by his family and friends in such a way that he is considered to be dependable and commendable.

 Activism and Ideology

His morals and values are what help to shape him into the “good black man,” he is. Whether he was raised in a traditional family setting, mentored by great men, raised by an incredibly strong single parent  (female or male),  his intrinsic core values are evident and he walks in his purpose to help promote such ideologies. His “woke” walk matches his “woke” talk.  He educates the younger generation, he is a mentor, and his plan is to continually uplift.

Physical Features

Physical attractiveness is not what makes a “good black man” good. How he takes care of his physical form is what makes him a role model for others. We can praise genetics and DNA as the reason why the black male is considered dominant in regard to attractiveness and athleticism : but he does not need to be an athlete, a model, or even a health fanatic to be considered attractive. His physical features are accentuated by good hygiene and proper nutrition. He is aware of what he is ingesting and he also is conscious of what he needs to do to maintain good health.

Education & Intellect

A “good black man” does not necessarily need to have a college education. Although, the number of “good black men” who do pursue higher education are increasing every year. And, we are definitely here for it! He can be and avid reader, he can conduct research on his own regarding his legacy, heritage, and other cultures. He can educate himself through kinesthetic learning; meaning he can learn through action. His instinct to survive is part of what we appreciate about the “good black man,” it is in his nature to comprehend his surroundings and execute what needs to be done in order to sustain his life and the people he holds himself responsible for.

Sexuality and Virility 

A black man’s sexuality is often used as  content for stereotype. The references to his ability to perform and to achieve the ultimate sexually pleasing experiences with anyone whom he comes in contact with is a tall order. Clearly, for the purpose of reproduction, the black man has not disappointed with regard to continuing the race. Sometimes men carry the stereotypes into physical relationships and are disappointed if they do not meet the benchmark of what a virile black man should be able to accomplish. However, a “good black man” is not only driven to be a passionate, seductive, and satisfying sexual partner: he is interested in learning what pleases his partner and creating intimacy that goes beyond the act of sex.

Faith and Religious Practice 

As leader of the community and the household the “good black man” is expected to understand that there is a higher power in our universe. Religion not withstanding, as long as a black man understands that he is the manifestation of a higher power placed here on earth with the purpose of guiding, protecting, leading and supporting his family and his community, he can be considered “a good black man.” For those who are in practice of any form of religion; it is his responsibility to lead his family to their respective place of worship. He leads the prayer. He provides the foundation of faith on which his family is built.

Business Savvy

Who doesn’t appreciate a good BMW? Black man working… A “good black man” understands that it is part of his responsibility to provide for himself first and also for his family as an extension of who he is. He can be an employee or intern that shows up to work on time, properly dressed with a good attitude of providing excellent service, and willing to learn his craft in preparation to lead. He can have a great idea and then put forth the action it takes to make that idea come to fruition. He can make things with his hands, repair things, build things, nurture and care for things. He can design through drawing and  create models of his concepts. He can create technological advances in industry that have yet to be seen. A man who understands that technology is a tool and it is not always an electronic venture has business savvy. A “good black man” sees opportunity and capitalizes on it.

There are so many things that make a man a “good black man,” it cannot be summarized in a quick article. It takes sincere dedication to the observation of him in his element, understanding how he works, understanding what motivates him, and seeing the fruit of his labor to really be able to pinpoint what makes a “good black man” good.  It’s also a matter of opinion, there are some traits of good black men that may not have even been mentioned here. The other question is when we know we are in the midst of “good black men,” how do we treat them? Do we treat them like they are “good black men” or do we fail to recognize them when we see them?

Did You Know?

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What is Domestic Violence? 

by, Ascellia Arenas

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, let’s talk about it. The problem is real. We can’t ignore it, make jokes about it, or continue to blame, shame and humiliate the victims. Victims of DV are all around us but they are shrouded in secrecy. It’s time to shed some light and make it STOP.  
According to the US Department of Justice, the definition of Domestic Violence is as follows, “We define domestic violence as a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person.”  
  
The perception that Domestic Violence (DV) only happens to a “certain” type of woman is the main reason why this problem persists. DV can happen and does happen regardless of situational circumstances, ” Domestic violence can happen to anyone regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, or gender. Domestic violence affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels. Domestic violence occurs in both opposite-sex and same-sex relationships and can happen to intimate partners who are married, living together, or dating.”

Domestic Violence (DV) has a far reaching effect that impacts the lives of the victims, their children, and the community, as well. Children who are exposed to DV are more likely to have social development issues than those who are not. The Department of Justice informs, “Children, who grow up witnessing domestic violence, are among those seriously affected by this crime. Frequent exposure to violence in the home not only predisposes children to numerous social and physical problems, but also teaches them that violence is a normal way of life – therefore, increasing their risk of becoming society’s next generation of victims and abusers.”

My first experience with DV happened when I was a teenager. I knew what happened to me was wrong and I felt the need to protect myself and fight back. Imagine me 5’5 and 115 pounds thinking I could defend myself against a young man probably 3times my size. I tried it though, I wasn’t going to let anybody put hands on me! I would push back, fight back, earn my respect, or so I thought. I was not aware, as I am now, that I was being  abused. 

I continued in that cycle of abusive relationships well in to my adulthood. Defending myself, arguing, cursing, fighting back when boys in my life wanted to control me. Then, when DV reared its ugly head in my marriage, I continued to “fight for my respect” and those episodes of violence persisted until I decided to get help and consequently walk away from that unhealthy relationship. My children witnessed DV: it has impacted their lives tremendously. 

The  consequent divorce impacted all of our lives significantly for many years after. I lost everything I worked for. I spent years in court fighting for my rights, my safety (& my children’s safety), and for a better life. 

I want women and men to learn what DV is, how it affects others, and what they can do to prevent it from reoccurring. 

We can change only if we desire to be better. 

 Learn more from The Department of Justice 

Celli Arenas

Celli Arenas

Celli Arenas, published author, has been featured in several magazines, such as: MIA Magazine, Success Magazine, Legacy Magazine. She is the host blogger at cellibration.com, and hosts MIA-Live.net for BlogTalk Radio. Her books, “30 Days of Dynamic Pursuit” a self-help journal, and “Sidetracked: He Used To Love Me”, a coming of age novel,  are both available at Amazon.

Holiday Love: Holiday Dating Tips

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Holiday Love: Holiday Dating Tips

By, Celli Arenas

Tis the season to be jolly. Take your time getting to know new people, date, court, and find that person who adds a twinkle to your eyes. The holidays provide great opportunities to go out and enjoy the company of someone special. Dr. Helen Fisher offers the following tips:

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1. “Family and romance don’t always mix. Be careful about including him or her in family holiday activities.” Unless you feel that both parties can mix well together, you may want to wait until after the holidays to have a meet and greet.

2. “Curb your generosity when buying your date presents or she/he may think you are more serious than you really are.” Remember it is the thought that counts. A nice scarf, bottle of wine, gift certificate for a mani/pedi, a nice candle or set of candles, are all thoughtful and appropriate for someone you are dating casually.

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3. “Do something “different” with your date like a carriage ride, skating, sledding or driving.” Do something different. Definitely don’t do the office party, unless you are ready for the co-workers to start planning your wedding.

****Unique activities drive up dopamine in the brain and can stimulate romance.****

4. “Holding hands with your date can affect oxytocin levels in the brain and increase feelings of trust and attachment.” Kiss if and when you are ready. Lots of oxytocin involved, for sure.

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5. “At holiday parties, introduce your date to your friends, explain who people are, how you know them, and then continually include your date in your conversations.” DON’T CALL YOUR DATE “A FRIEND”. If he/she is your date, be honest.

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6. “There is a fine line between bragging and telling your date about yourself.” Let him or her get some airtime in the conversation too. Don’t hog the conversation talking about yourself.

7. “If you are drinking alcohol, be aware of how much you are drinking during your date.” Two is plenty; but, if you are driving try to space out your intake (drink water in between and no drinks for at least an hour before you drive). Trust me on this…😏

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8. “Don’t listen to everything your friends and family say about your date.” You’re dating this person, not them. Remember, they aren’t in the relationship, you are. Unless there is physical, emotional, or financial abuse going on, keep your business to yourself.

9. “Be on time or call your date and let them know you are running late.” Everybody has things that come up, be flexible, but don’t be a doormat.

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10. “If you have the holiday blues, try not to let it affect your date or consider waiting to date until after the holidays.” Keep it at home sad Sally! It’s time to turn up!

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For more details check here.

Remember, holidays are to be enjoyed. Have a great holiday season!

Join my friends Michelle and Amber and me, as we discuss more great holiday tips! Monday night 8:30-9:00pm on Twitter #holidazechat

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Get your copy of “Sidetracked: He Used To Love Me” , by Celli Arenas, today!

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Get your copies on Amazon.com

Sidetracked: He Used To Love Me

30 Days of Dynamic Pursuit

Follow @sidetrackedbook on Instagram & Twitter

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Gabby & D. Wade’s Christmas Miracle: Wedding Bells!

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Saturday night, date night, the hottest and most buzzed about couple of 2012 decided to end 2013 on a high note.  Dwayne Wade, Miami Heat star and Gabrielle Union, BET series  “Being Mary Jane” star,  have made it official and are getting married! In true Miami Heat style, Wade followed in the footsteps of his teammates Lebron James and Chris Bosh by making the Miami Heat Christmas Party a magical affair filled with love, tradition, and family announcements.

Sorry fellas, gorgeous movie star Gabby is off the market. The popular screen actress, best known for her roles in “Bring it On” and “Think Like a Man“,  was said to be beaming a megawatt smile all night! This will be the second marriage for both Union, 41, and Wade, who turns 32 next month.

Wade was in a giving mood on Saturday night, gifting his team mates with green “Masters” styled  golfing jackets and his love- a huge diamond ring. Wade took to social media to announce that, “She said YES!!!”  He delightfully posted pictures of the humongous solitaire ring on her dainty left finger to both his Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Wade was drafted to the Miami Heat in 2003, has played his entire career in Miami, won MVP in 2006, and has helped the Heat win three championships. The Wade-Union family is set to make an official announcement today.

Discover more South Florida success stories on www.mia-live.net

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