Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Our Deepest Fear (Marianne Williamson)

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I am thankful for the RAIN

Today is December 1, and Richard and I can officially say, "We're getting married next month." Wow...this sounds like a powerful statement to me. We have come so far in such a short time.

To some living in New York City, today looks rather gloomy and dark outside. One's demeanor and attitude might even be affected negatively by the unattractive weather. However, today, I am thankful for the RAIN. This rainy day is releasing so many blessings. It it a sign to me that things are well.

Yesterday, Richard moved into our new home. The events leading up to moving into this wonderful space reaffirm that God is on our side. After coming up with a budget for what was feasible to spend every month on living expenses we began apartment hunting in September. Richard convinced me to visit an apartment complex that I was not interested in considering as an option. The complex was mixed with new garden style buildings, serving as the main corridors and a couple of separate of buildings that had been acquired by the complex. The annex as Richard calls it, had the larger apartments that we were most interested in viewing. When taking the tour we had to press the consultant to show us the annex buildings. Later we found out that his hesitancy was related to the lack of interest shown in these separate buildings. Interestingly, Richard and I took great liking to the annex building. The apartment he showed encapsulated everything that Richard and I wanted in a home individually and as a couple.

Since our search was still early from our prospected move in date, we continued to look lightly in other places. However, we were sold on the penthouse apartment that we stumbled upon. In his persistent manner, Richard visited the apartment weekly for updates on any other interested renters. He grew a rapport with the consultant and was assured that if anyone was interested we would be the first to know.

At the beginning of November interest in the building picked up greatly and we were faced with some decisions. We needed to decide if we would lease the apartment a month sooner than we anticipated and if Richard would live there during that extra month. The consultant followed through with his promise. He leased almost every other apartment in the annex except for the one we showed interest in. At that crossroad, we made the decision to lease the apartment.

Our prayers were answered and our diligence was honored. We got the exact apartment we wanted under budget. I'm thankful for the RAIN!

Blessed Abundantly,

Friday, November 12, 2010

One Single Mother Empowers Many

Single mothers are increasingly becoming the face of the modern family. According to Custodial Mothers and Fathers and Their Child Support: 2007, released by the U.S. Census Bureau in November, 2009, there are approximately 13.7 million single parents in the United States today, and those parents are responsible for raising 21.8 million children (approximately 26% of children under 21 in the U.S. today).

Recently, the long-running cable access program, “The Lenny Matthews Show,” taped in New York City featured a new voice and a new hope of encouragement for single mothers in Feona Sharhran Huff. Feona, writes the blog, “Living the Solo Mommy Life” (http://livingthesolomommylife.blogspot.com) and maintains a rigorous schedule. She operates a full-service communications firm with an event planning arm, writes children’s books, conducts youth workshops and teaches all while raising her two talented children in Brooklyn, New York, “solo.” In her blog, Feona writes her daily discoveries, learned lessons and tips on balancing life. Feona’s blog is sometimes comical, sometimes tear-jerking but always empowering.

Feona studied journalism at Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Virginia and had the dreams of many young women that included marriage to her childhood sweetheart, living in a big house, raising children and travelling with her family. However, not all of those dreams became her reality. Feona has made strides to turn her life’s journey into an empowerment platform, rather than a pity party.

Even though Feona has turned what could be seen like tragedy into triumph, her journey has not been without struggle. She says, her greatest challenge is not feeling like there is enough time to do all the things she needs to do. Achieving life balance is a daily goal. Feona sites knowing that her children love and support her as her greatest reward. “My children are my greatest joy and the best thing that has happened to me,” she says.

Feel free to contact Feona at (347) 386-9206, solomommymag@yahoo.com.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

LMS Show: Kristen and Lenny interviewing "The Cake Lady" (unedited)

Lenny Matthews invited me to co-host his long running cable access show. This is our interview of Renee the neighborhood "Cake Lady," at Sister's Bookstore.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Complex Simplicity and Rainbows

I was taught and read that the rainbow was a sign given to Noah after the flood had passed as a reminder that, that type of storm would never occur that same way again.

My interpretation is that the rainbow is a sign that the storm has passed and hope, new life and ultimately a new season is on the horizon. I also don't think that rainbows have to appear physically in order to experience them.

Recently, while sleeping I had a series of dreams and at the end of each dream was a rainbow. When I awoke my prayer was similar to the man in this video: www. youtube.com/watch?v=B6TfGD6CQs0. "God, what is the meaning? What does this symbolize."

I was left with a tremendous amount of joy at my answer. My dreams are becoming my reality. The are no longer intangible and only existing in my mind. They are within arm's reach and I have the ability to reach out and touch them.

The video of the man from Yosemite "ooooing and awwwing" over the sight of two rainbows has been a youtube sensation and worldwide joke largely due to the man's reaction. I question, doesn't the splendor and wonder of God's creation and glory deserve our praise and inquiry for the deeper meaning. I was humbled by the man's genuine awe of the rainbow. I remember while growing up in Chicago and looking at the stars at night was a big deal to me and watching the moon light up the sky was surreal and watching the sun rise in the morning and set at night was breath taking.

As I near the end of the road as a single woman, and become one with another, these simple yet complex wonders have caught my attention...again.

In New York, taking the time to smell the roses, or breathe in the fresh air (acutally you may not want to inhale the air...lol) is a moot pastime for most people in the region. The constant running, hustle and bustle of the daily grind seem to distract us from life's most precious and simple moments.

Today was the perfect example. I rushed to get to work on time; frantically checked and answered emails; both professional and personal; made plans to meet a girlfriend during lunch; rushed back to work; took a conference call; made some online purchases; got harrassed by colleagues; rushed out of work for a hair appointment before my stylist goes on vacation; and then took a long walk home and into the arms of outlet of release.

Tomorrow, no matter the weather, I will wake up and inhale God's creative beauty.

But first, tonight, I will power down, rather power off, and simply tell myself...Good Night.

(Connecticut, here I come - with rainbows following =)


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

God's Healing Mechanisms

Today, I have filled my ears with sounds from the ocean thanks to you tube. My spirit and my mind were in conflict and not much else was working. No sermons, or inspirational music, or empowerment seminars. Suddenly the calming sound of the ocean popped into my head. To my surprise there were lots videos of just sounds of the ocean. It definitely brought me peace and serenity. I thought of how genius a creator God is and how I can find him in all sorts of places and ways.

Recently, I experienced pain and thought about and the many ways it affects us. Which pain is worst: physical, emotional or mental? Some say it’s the scars you can’t see; emotional pain. Interestingly enough if you listen to a person long enough you begin to see those unseen scars meant to stay out of view.

Any way, I thought about the growing pains that are a part of life. Have you ever watched a plant grow? In elementary school, I was given an assignment to care for a plant and watch it grow. Over weeks and a few months, that’s what I did. Every day with eager excitement, I watched as the seed opened up and pressed its way through the soil contained by a small pot. Then little by little, one leaf at a time sprouted.

Even with the prudent growth of the plant, I noticed the struggle of the stem to press through the soil and reach tall above the planted pot. As I reflected on this process, I wondered in that process of growth and struggle, is this painful for the plant? In the process of development and maturity, is there discomfort?

It sure seems like it. Today, I find rest, peace, joy and understanding in God’s complex simplicities: plants and the ocean.

I also wondered if greatness is created when we experience the most pain. With pain, I have heard writers say that they wrote their best song, painters say they painted their greatest portrait, and people who seemed like they shouldn't have made it rise above all odds to higher heights.

In 2008, I created The King's Daughters, Inc at one of my lowest points. It is one of the things I am most proud of and it didn't just help to heal me. The organization touches the lives of others.

Surely, greatness can be achieved in happiness, but maybe it's pain that requires us to move beyond ourselves to seek the greater. In pain you have to fight for your happiness, your sanity...your life.

I'm worth fighting for. We all are.


The Growing Billionairess

Quote that encouraged me today

Obstacles can't steal your dream without your permission. Obstacles are inevitable; quitting is optional! When you walk in faith and refuse to quit, God guarantees your obstacles won't prevent your vision from being fulfilled.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

NO EXCUSES from me today.

I, the Billionairess am making NO EXCUSES for my JOY, my SUCCESS, my "FAILURE," THIS LOVE...and must confess that the sum total equals - I AM COMPLETELY BLESSED!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Love is in Need of Love

Check out the article I wrote for the website http://www.bevirtue.com/, founded by the fabulous Chantal Parmley!!


Sunday, August 8, 2010

Ever-Evolving Newness

Have you ever wanted to freeze frame a moment in time or press pause to stand still? I guess that question was answered by the invention of cameras, video cameras and the like. Unfortunately, my camera was dead on Friday night.

This week was blessed. Not everything I wanted to happen, happened. However, there were things that I needed to happen and did not anticipate happening that happened.

I have to highlight one moment in particular.

Most weekends I spend my time in Connecticut. From my first few trips to this region of the country, coming from New York it has felt like a peaceful get-a-way, a small vacation. This past Friday, I left work and went to my 4th Bikram yoga class. This bit of torture in Harlem prepared my mind for a beautiful relaxing weekend in CT. As I made my way from Harlem to CT after class, I was bombarded (and I said bombarded because the comments and the yelling were intrusive) by the evening element and envoirnment. It was the first time I felt unsafe in Harlem as a woman, at night. It may have been because I have not walked the span of 125th Street in a long time in the dark alone. I'll give Harlem the benefit of the doubt, especially after 5 years. I refuse to leave feeling unsafe and scared of the place I have called home and grown to love.

Back to the moment...

I took the metro north from Harlem 125 to Stamford, CT. I arrived to open arms, a hug and kiss and a bouquet of yellow roses with red trim from RP3. While the open arms, hug and kiss are a part of his normal reception, the coming surprises were not. RP3 drove us back to his place for me to find a clean apartment (you would have to know my Tazmanian fiance to understand the implications of this), candles lit and a well thought, well prepared dinner for two. RP3's surprise menu consisted of shrimp jambalaya, sweet chilli shrimp, french green string beans w/cashew nuts and roasted potatoes. It was a total shock and awe moment; the perfect evening. Dinner by candle light in peace and serenity with my future.

Maybe pausing the moment would be short sided. As the picture of the future continues to unfold, it reminds me that there is more to see, more to experience. Through trial and error, counseling, guidance and wisdom we are learning to create an ever-evolving (shout out to FCBC) atmosphere of romance that does not grow stale. Here's to 90 years of newness...


The Future Mrs. RP3.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Kristen interviewed by the Lenny Matthews Show

On July 19, I was interviewed about my contribution to "Souls of My Young Sisters" and The King's Daughters, Inc, by journalist and television host Lenny Matthews. The Lenny Matthews Show has been taping and reporting for over 30 years. I was humbled and excited to be interviewed by someone of integrity. My dream and goal is to create and host a news magazine show. I would be considered ol' school when it comes the type of television I like. My favorite television formats are public access television and cable broadcast stations. I like hard core journalism disseminated with integrity from a diverse group of informed, knowledgeable sources.

Here is my interview with journalist Lenny Williams:


Saturday, July 10, 2010

Give and Take/Sincerely Yours

While watching the show "Scrubs" this afternoon, I received the random confirmation that "Give and Take" and "Sincerely Yours" are the right titles for this entry.

On Wednesday, I returned from a long weekend with the girls on Martha's Vineyard. It was wonderful! 6 ladies, one three bedroom house, one car and one gorgeous island!!! It was a road trip excursion that we're already looking forward to repeating with some tweaks next year. Three of us started the trip on Saturday and stopped in Providence Rhode Island, stayed at the Westin and had a great dinner. On Sunday morning, all six of us met in Martha's Vineyard via ferry. We gathered together in reunion style and hit the main drag in Oak Bluffs aka Circut Avenue, had lunch, did some shopping and took pictures. Then, we arrived at our lovely abode for the next few days. We rented a house from friends of my parents, The Jacksons', and it had all the charm of New England. The Jacksons' invited all of us to their house for a cookout. We enjoyed their lovely home as they also own the house next door...(I know, I know), ate well and learned more about MV. Since it was July 4th, we headed to a good spot along the water where we could watch the fireworks. We parked the car, hopped on a couple rocks, wrapped ourselves in blankets and had a front row view of the Independence Day tradition that lights up the sky. Afterwards, we headed back to Circut Avenue for some dancing! Reggae, our pick of the night set the stage for a great party! It was so much fun!

On Monday we had brunch at what became our most frequented restaurant, Deon's on Circut and then we headed for the beach!! South Beach. We baked in the sun and played in the waves for two and half hours. After we soaked up the sun, we headed back to Circut for some souvenir shopping and then home to freshen up for the night. Once together (and we did a great job I might add of 6 women getting themselves together for a night on the town) we headed to Edgarton for dinner at Atlantic Fish & Chops. The food was outstanding, but as tasty as it was it didn't compare to our riot of a waiter. He was Asian with so much soul. He had a sly remark for everything and a lot of swag. LOL! The icing on the cake was when he brought out the cupcakes we had prepared for Stephanie's birthday, lit them and asked could he have one. We had 10 for 6 people so sparing one was no problem. The next thing we hear is Happy Birthday being sung behind us. Our waiter had given the cupcake to the bartender for her birthday. Hilarious!! All we could do was laugh and take note at this funny story highlighting our vacation. We went home, and prepared for three of us to depart on Tuesday. The next morning we headed to Linda Jean's, the well known Mom and Pop restaurant of Circut Avenue for breakfast. From there we took Toya, Diondra and Steph to the speed ferry. It was hard to say good-bye and break up the group, but we did and continued the day. Leah, Jina and I headed to the house from there to plot out our next move which led us to bike riding! We drove to West Chop, rented bikes and rode for an hour. It was awesome! We grabbed ice cream, deserrt for the evening at Jina's family's place and headed home. After we made our transformation from sweaty bikers to sexy ladies we visited Jina's family who like her were lovely inside and out. We met friends of friends and friends of family, further confirming how small this world is. Later that night we went to a local restaurant for dinner on where else...Circut Avenue. The sandman was upon so we went home to sleep and prepare to depart our blissfilled vacation.

Wednesday morning, Jina and Leah scrubbed the house while I prepared the car for our journey back to NYC. We welcomed Jina's parents who split the week in the house with us. I love seeing where people come from and family is super important to me. Jina's parents are beautiful people and I hope they enjoyed the house much as we did.

I returned to NYC on Wednesday night to a smiling RP3, who allowed us to use his car for the trip. He gave me a very warm reception and I missed him madly! The roles of men and women are interesting. RP3 and I spent 30 days together in June with no pause and for the most part we were great. However, from our early beginnings, I expressed my need for me time and girl time and he has honored that. Maybe this is strange, but I enjoy missing him. I enjoy the renewal and the refreshing of our relationship. I enjoy having to be reminded why someone is special in my life and re-learn my appreciation for them. I appreciate the relationships in my life and what they add to me. Iron does sharpen iron.

God, my parents, my syblings, my fiance, the girls all have their place and purpose. I am made whole because of the completeness of purpose operating in my life. Continuing in all this purpose talk, I am spending the afternoon working on media business and wedding planning. See you next Saturday as the journey continues =)

Sincerely Yours,

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Blessed Beyond Measure

I'm in Connecticut this morning, praising God for just being God in my life. Thanking God for filling my cup to overflowing.

I'm putting the finishing touches on my packing for this weekend's trip to Rhode Island and Martha's Vineyard with the girls. I'm so excited! I've never been to MV and we're fortunate to stay in the house of very good friends of my parents.

6 ladies...one house. How could this not be exciting!? I'm thankful for them and their friendship.

This morning RP3, in his helpful way put music on my iPod for the trip, made my breakfast, tea and a nail appointment for a mani/pedi nearby his place. The sun is shining so bright. Joy and peace have to be emminent.

He's not even bothered that I have turned his apartment upside down packing. Peace in the midst of chaos. Ummovable love.

This morning we listened to a song that I wrote and recorded five years ago, when I first moved to NYC. My how time flies. Maybe I'll re-record it and sell it. I spoke to my Mom this morning about wedding stuff and she was unusally agreeable. (I think that birthday gift card to Cole Haan helped =)

Although my thoughts are a litte scattered and this post is probably bouncing from one idea to the next...I reflect. I'm blessed beyond measure.

I'm here, loved, educated, whole, afforded the opportunity to travel with friends, engaged to a man who uncondionally loves me. I'm talented, my family is whole and to top it off...the sun is shining.

Whatever adversity comes my way today, is not permitted to erase my smile or steal my peace and joy. When the good outweighs the bad the way it does today, there is no more room for negativity.

Love is on my mind and in my heart. I hope you know how blessed you are too.

Just to be alive...


Saturday, June 26, 2010

Re-introducting myself/Welcoming myself back

Where do I begin...
I guess it would make sense to start at the beginning, but the beginning would focus too much on the past, rather the immediacy of the present. With that resolved, I will start at the present.

Change has been the name of the game for the past 11 months. Not only change, but in some ways complete overhaul.
I switched careers for a while. I left full-time finance to purse non-profit work. This is the most rewarding, however the hardest work (other than my current relationship) that I have done is non-profit work.
The King's Daughters, Inc, my mission and focus took center stage for a year. Now, I have to work on the next steps to make TKD, it's best. In addition, I began working for a very elite non-profit.
Working in non-profit has been an interesting learning curve mentally and emotionally. It has also helped me realize certain steps on my path of life: some sensible, some backwards, but they all count.
I want TKD to be a worldwide movement. As such, I need to do some more work on myself. That has led me back to media and working to build my ever growing media career.

In the past five years living in NYC, I have enjoyed singing on stages for 50 to 5,000 people, recorded in basement recording studios and participated in sessions at Chung King studios. I have appeared on MTV, had TKD appear on BET, been featured as a spokesperson, news host, been published as a writer for a national publication and the list goes on! I have been shown so much favor since manuevering this complex city. However, I have learned that everything I set out to do when moving to NYC is not nearly as important as the person I would become.
I have become a well rounded, mature, self aware, woman who genuinally loves people. I am not without my flaws, hang-ups and inconsistencies, but I am better today than I was five years ago. I've grown up a lot.
Where am I?

Spiritually: I am building on the foundation started years ago. I am discovering God in a new way everyday. He is not to be put neatly in the box most spiritual people like to keep Him in for our comfort. He's beyond our conceptual finite minds. As such, I am following Jesus to a daily relationship with God and all it's splendor.
Mentally: I am intrigued by all the chaos of this world. Some call it signs of the times. Whatever you call it, the atmosphere, the envoirnment, the world as we knew is shifting gears and will most likely never be the same. The Bible descibes many of the events taking place and their increased frequency as signs of Jesus' return growing near. The state of our world calls me to spend more time praying for others and petitioning God for greater revelation as to how to overcome.
Physically: I want to be in better shape! I just turned 28 with the realization that I actually have to work to stay in shape. LOL! That sounds crazy, but when you have never had to work to do this, to me it is crazy. Those pesky 5 or 10 unwanted pounds seem to stick around a lot longer. I have been working with a dynamic trainer that I hope to begin training with her regularly. Hopefully she will help me to kick these pounds to the curb!
Emotionally: I'm in a great place. I have greater control over my erratic emotions, however I am not without them. I have embraced that I do have emotions (this took a long time). They are not all bad, they are sensors that help me locate myself. Sometimes, I am way off base and sometimes, I am discovering. For sure I am ever evolving.
Financially: I have learned how to budget a lot and a little. I don't have all the money I want, but I have learned to live with what I have and make it work. My debt has decreased greatly and that is not all due to my doing, but financially, I'm in a good place and getting better.

Continuing with the question where I am...
Drum roll...roll...roll...roll...!
I'm engaged to be married!! Whew! I can exhale, now that I got that out. In February 2010, Richard Albert Pope III asked me to marry him and I said yes. He surprised me at my job on 2/1/2010 and proposed marriage. I no longer have to whisper to myself that I am engaged. It has sunk in and the lovely symbol he gave me is a constant reminder=)
RP3 (as I call him) and I have an interesting story. It is a story of divine intervention, blessing and favor. I will let him come back and tell the story as his version is better, but for now I will say, he and I began courting in July 2009. We let our parents (who introduced us) know our courtship status in person Sept 2009. In Dec 2009, Richard asked my father for permission to marry me and my father gave his blessing. In Jan 2010 Richard and began ring shopping. On Feb 1, 2010, he enlisted the help of my friends to help execute his surprise proposal at my job. Since our meeting, we have travelled the entire tri-state area and more: NY, NJ, CT, PA, MA, RI, MD, FL, AZ. Our relationship has been a wonderful adventure with it's ups and downs, but the discovery of one another, of ourselves and the ability to love beyond our personal limits has been liberating. It is true, "Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." I feel free.
We are getting married in January 2011.

I also attend a new church. First Corinthian Baptist Church in Harlem. I have always been civically involved on the local level. It's interesting that it took me 5 years, to become a member of a local church. All things are purposeful for it's season. In this new season, FCBC is purposeful.

Personally, I feel that I am coming into a more accepted, true self. Professionally, I am working on becoming what I believe: a media personality with the ability to own and operate media and financial empires. TEAM RADIKL in the building!!!

Today, I am Connecticut based and headed to the beach w/my lover.

More to come...

Kristen (The King's DaughterBillionairessKL in RADIKL)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Comfort Zone

This song from Marvin Sapp's (my favorite Gospel artist) latest album, "Here I Am," best describes where I am and how I feel right now, this year.

I'm coming out of my comfort zone
Some of the places in my life that's comfortable
God is challenging me
Trust and believe
For to go where I've not gone
I must do what I've not done

So I am coming out of my comfort zone
Tho it may cost me some friends
I'll walk alone
God is challenging me
To Trust and believe
For to go where I've not gone
I must do what I've not done

God is calling me
(to walk into my destiny)
God is challenging me
(to go where I've not been)
God is proving me
(and for the rest of my life, I'll say yes)
Yes yes yes!

I'm coming out of my comfort zone
I'm being stretched to place where I've never known
God is challenging me
To trust and believe
For to go where I've not gone
I must do what I've not done

God is calling me
(to walk into my destiny)
God is challenging me
(to go where I've not been)
God is proving me
(and for the rest of my life, I'll say yes)
Yes yes yes!

I'm coming out
Into my destiny
I'm coming out
And for the rest of my life my answer will be yes
Yes, yes, yes

I'm coming out
Into my destiny
I'm coming out
And for the rest of my life it will be yes
Yes yes yes

Yes to your will
I'm coming out
Yes to your way
I'm coming out
Yes Lord
I'm coming out
Each and every day

I'm coming out (2x)

I'm coming out of my comfort zone
I'm being stretched to a place I've never known
God is challenging me
Trust and believe