Friday, March 28

Petition Urges Record Labels To ‘Stop Degradation Of Black People’

by: April D. Byrd

A petition has been circulating that has become very popular. The document created by Kenneth Paulk is making big headlines around the web. The creator is serving notice to Artists and big record companies to end the disrespect of black culture, mostly through black artists. The petition is detail oriented and lists all the "dirty" companies clearly by name.

Time will tell if the petition will make a difference in the music and entertainment industry, but the writer is very direct on his intentions. He claims that companies and artists can stop valuing money over quality of content. Digital Media has definitely been given a new platform to Social Justice. The request may be a big leap of faith, but it might not be such a hard bargain. The mission holds good reason and merit, but will merit be enough? check out the details (below):

"This petition is for our future children and grandchildren. This petition is for our ancestors that sacrificed and died to make things better for us.

We have to let our ancestors know that we will not allow our legacy to be destroyed by corporate America, and we will not allow our legacy to be destroyed by a few greedy music artist that value money more than they value their own people.

When you see bad things happening and don't say anything it will continue forever. Bad things will only stop when good people take a stand against it.

Record companies the rappers are your EMPLOYEES and you would never allow your EMPLOYEES to make songs that disrespect or degrade the Jewish people, and you would never allow your employees to make songs that disrespect Gays, but you allow your employees to make songs that disrespect and degrade black people.

Record companies you make a profit by allowing rappers to call black people n!gger and n!gga in their songs. Record companies you would never allow rappers to make songs that glorify the killing of Jews or Gays, but you allow rappers to make songs that glorify the killing of blacks, and you profit from it.

The negative rappers value money and material things more than they value the betterment of their own people, they don't even care about the damage that their music is doing to us as a people. We would never allow whites or any other groups to make songs against us, and we shouldn't allow blacks to do it either.

People will only do what you allow them to do, and as black people we are at fault to a large degree because for the last 20 years we have allowed record companies and rappers to degrade us as a people and get a way with it.

Just like other groups of people would never allowed themselves to be disrespected it's time for black people to show the world that we love ourselves as well.

We must send a clear message to those that have exploited us and harmed us as a people. The best way is through legal action or class action lawsuit against any record company, record distributor or music artist that continues to put out those kind of songs.

Stevie Wonder has sold over 100 million records and he never called us n!ggers in his songs. He always called us brothers and sisters in his songs.

Black people we gave the world great music, we gave the world Soul music, Jazz and other forms of music. I refused to stand by and watch our great music legacy be trashed and destroyed before the whole world.

99% of rappers are signed to these record companies and distributors below, this petition is against these companies and their rap artist. These are the names of the executives that run these record companies that degrade blacks.":

Universal Music Group CEO Lucian Charles Grainge

Sony Music Entertainment CEO Doug Morris

Warner Music Group CEO Stephen F Cooper

Island Def Jam CEO Barry Weiss

Island Def Jam President Steve Bartels

Interscope Geffen A&M Records President John Janick

RCA Records CEO Peter Edge

Virgin EMI Records President Ted Cockle

Atlantic Records CEO Craig Kallman

Young Money President, Dwayne Michael Carter Jr

Cash Money Records CEO'S,  Bryan and Ronald Williams

Capitol Music Group CEO Steve Barnett

The FCC is going to be asked to play a major role in this.
Federal Communication Commission (FCC) president, Tom Wheeler

Will you be signing the petition? Do you think it will make a difference? Leave a comment in the section below and continue the convo on  Trey Anthony's Facebook Fan Page.

Wednesday, March 26

We're Going Away!

Folks, I’m going to Vegas!  I’m going reluctantly, but I’m going.  Wife is currently planning our kid-free three-day trip for August.  Why Vegas?  To see Celine Dion, of course.  Now wait a New York minute, before you stop reading out of disappointment that I am an out Celine Dion fan, she is a really good performer and if Wife, a die-hard Springsteen fan will lovingly travel to Vegas to fulfill my dream of seeing her, you can continue to support this blog and keep reading!  
In all honesty, I was willing to toss the Celine in Vegas dream out the window because of the money and the basketball team a.k.a the kids, but Wife has insisted that we get away.  We need something to look forward to; so we’re heading to Vegas this summer.   I’m glad she’s pushing me to do this because I have been using our small people as an excuse to toss aside many of my big and not-so-big dreams for the past seven years.    
Leaving our brood is not easy.  Not because we love them and all that stuff, but because they’re impossible much of the time and there are so many of them.  There’s no sending them to the grandparents for a few days.  We need a team of people to step in.  We’ve got the grandmothers, aunts, cousins and a paid caregiver on deck to make this trip possible.  Apparently all of these people agree that we need some time away.  So the money is taken care of (Lines of Credit – funding vacations everywhere); the children are taken care of, so we’re good to go, right?  Wrong!  

I can conjure up worry about any situation.  It’s one of my superpowers.  Things will be going along swimmingly and I think, “Wait a minute, something is missing.  It must be a random worry!”  When I decided to share my concern about our trip with Wife,  she rudely rolled her eyes at me and said, “Seriously?”  Okay, nothing bugs a worrier more than someone who refuses to hop on board the worry train!  I don’t know how many times I have told Wife that if she just worried more, I could worry less!  
Anyway, I’m worried that something will happen to us – both of us, on the trip and we don’t currently have a will.  I suggested that we follow the rules of the US president and vice president and never travel together in case something happens.  This was comment was met with another eye roll and “Ajike!”  Sometimes Wife is unsupportive and rude!  
So now we need a will or I am not getting on the plane.  Worried readers, please don’t write to me about the importance of a will and having things in place.  I know these things, but we just haven’t taken care of it yet.  I am a worrier, not a responsible worrier.  Truth be told, we keep getting stuck on who will care for our kids should something happen to us.  It may come as a surprise to you, but it’s not easy to ask someone to take all five of your children and raise them together should something horrible happen.  And that is why I’ve decided to use this public platform to do it.  I’m joking.  Could you imagine?  We are, however, going to get this sorted out in the next few months though so if you are a close friend or family member I would be suspicious of any invitations to dinner on us!  
Worries aside, I truly am excited about our trip.  We need the sleep and the quiet (which of course is easy to find in Vegas).  And we need the time, that “date-nights” do not allow, to lower our shoulders, un-furrow our brows and stop talking about the kids.  Only five months away.  
Until then, I leave you with a little Celine.  Below is my favourite Celine Dion song, Love Can Move Mountains.  The video seriously highlights the cheesy, ridiculousness of Celine.  By the way I’ve been dreaming of doing a montage of family photos set to this song.  Perfect, right?  It’s coming.  Stay tuned!  

XO Ajike

Friday, March 21

Looking For an Executive Assistant to Join the Trey Anthony Studios Team

Trey Anthony Studios is looking for an Executive Personal/ Arts Administrative Assistant.

Want to join the team of an award winning Production Company? Then Apply for our E.A. position.

This position is a unique one as the person hired will be responsible for providing 
both personal and executive support to the executive. 
Must live in the GTA area and/or willing to travel to Toronto twice per week. 
Must have a valid drivers license and access to own fax/scanner/ and computer. 

Executive Support: 
• Managing the executive’s calendar, scheduling meetings and appointments.
• Preparing agendas and material for meetings.
• Booking workshop/rehearsal space.
• Sending out packages and following up on speaking requests.
• Supporting the planning and budgeting process, tracking, reporting and
managing updates.
• Invoicing and setting up bills online.
• Recording accurate files and receipts for bookkeeper.
• Updating website and numerous social media platforms in conjunction with
existing blogging team.
• Gathering press material and archiving all relative press.
• Researching grants/funding for television, film and theatre.
• Booking talent, writers, actors, camera crew etc.
• Reviewing television treatments, scripts etc.
• Arranging for lunch services, refreshments etc.
• Heavy coordination of travel arrangements (including international) and
itinerary preparation.
• Acting as the direct liaison between the executive and various business partners, clients and contractual staff including bloggers, lawyer,
accountant, bookkeeper, etc. 
• Administering and handling correspondence and follow up as required, with 
consideration to priorities and timelines. 
• Anticipating needs of the executive and being proactive. 
• Keeping immaculate and confidential files. 

Personal Support: 
• Scheduling personal appointments. 
• Running personal and household errands. 
• Liaising with executive’s personal home tenants and housekeeper. 
• Ensuring all rents are collected and paid. 
• Paying personal bills on line. 
• Maintaining strict confidentiality. 

Qualifications and Experience***Please do not apply if you do not meet the 
specific qualifications outlined in A, B, or C. 
A) At least 3 years+ of related professional administrative experience as an 
executive assistant along with experience in small office environment. 
B) A 2-year post-secondary diploma or equivalent education in Office or Business 
Administration, or graduate of an arts administrative, stage managing or business 
affairs program and you have worked 2 years or more in a position related to your 
C) 3 years+ experience as a stage manager, production assistant or line producer in 
the entertainment industry. 

This role is perfect for you, if you are…
Super organized. Detail oriented. Independent, confident and professional. Committed to your career path and dedicated to continuous growth and improvement. Excited about working behind the scenes. Eager to learn and be challenged. Enthusiastic about ‘wearing many hats’ and becoming the ‘rightarm’ of the company. Looking to join a very small, boutique, one womyn entrepreneurialteam with direct mentorship from the CEO. Comfortable taking a leadership role and making suggestions to improve business processes. Calm under fire and able to navigate throughsituations with diplomacy and tact. Honest, trustworthy, reliable and able to maintain discretion at all times. Anal about spread sheets and filing.  Able to work effectively and efficiently with minimal supervision. Not a clock-watcher and believes the job is done when the job is done!
Did we mention SUPER organized?

Schedule: 12-15 hours per week – Monday, Wednesday and Friday. 
Compensation range: $13-16/hour, depending on experience. 

Candidate must be available to do most of their hours virtually during regular 
business hours and do one to two in-person meetings per week. Some flexibility 
with hours allowed. Occasional support after hours (evenings and weekends) may 
be required while in production. 
Trey Anthony Studios (TAS) is committed to diversity and encourages applications from all qualified 
candidates, especially Aboriginal persons, members of sexual minority groups, 
LGBTQ, persons with disabilities, visible minorities and womyn. Please feel free to 
self identify in cover letter. Must be able to start immediately. 
Strong possibility that this position may evolve into a full time position in 
February 2015 or sooner. 

Only qualified applicants will be called. Please do not call, facebook or email. Please 
send cover letter and resume highlighting all your qualifications and the reasons 
you are ideal for this job to Please put in subject 
matter Personal Arts Administrative Assistant. 

Deadline: THURSDAY MARCH 27, 2014 – 5pm

Author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Discusses Blackness, Feminism, and Sexuality with Zadie Smith

by: April D. Byrd

The Conversation between  Zadie Smith and Chimamanda Adichie has almost turned into a viral phenomenon. The two Authors sat down for a chat at the Schomburg Center in Harlem, NY. Adichie's latest work Americanah recently won the National Book Critics Circle Prize for Fiction, She also caused a big stir when an excerpt of her TED talk about Feminism was featured on Beyonce's latest album. The excerpt which was featured on the track "Flawless" caused some to speculate whether or not Beyonce was up with the feminist cause, or should even be considered a feminist icon. The question may be valid as Beyonce is making headlines for teaming up with Lean In Author Sheryl Sandberg's  'Ban Bossy' campaign. However, Adichie admitted that she wasn't interested in "policing" anyone's feminism.

Smith and Adichie discussed various issues ranging from the Representation of Black Women in Media and Magazines, The Importance of Barack Obama's marriage to Michelle Obama, Race, Feminism, Sexuality, etc. Of course they included they're latest works and the works of other women Authors. Adichie also defended Beyonce's use of her TED talk this week on NPR's Tell Me More, but the talk between the two women alone is most buzz worthy. The discussion coverage from the live event may be a minute, but it's totally worth it!

Check out the ladies hot discussion in the video (below)

What is your input on the ladies discussion? What great points did they hit...or miss? Leave a comment below and chime in on the conversation on Trey Anthony's Fanpage. Let's Hear it!

Wednesday, March 19

Taking Care Of My Sickies

As a parent of many, there is no shortage of opportunities for me to pretend I have the skills of a medical practitioner.  The small Silverman-Akandes are very good at getting harsher than necessary, benign health problems.  Miss O and Mr. Lee have, since birth, been especially good at giving us scares.  There have been frequent trips to the emergency room – once by ambulance; there have been IVs – usually for hydration but sometimes medicine;  there have been hospital stays and regular trips to specialists and therapists.  
In the end, the best we can come up with is that these two really love to hang out at the hospital, enjoy all the attention that comes with it and still haven’t gotten over the fact that they came out of me sooner than they wanted and are a little more prone to getting sick because of it.    
Like any parent, I will do anything for my kids and want to ensure that they are healthy beings but there’s only so much excitement and panic I can muster up every time one of them gets sick.  I’ve suggested a frequent visitor points card for the hospital we frequent, where on the 5th visit you get free parking for the duration of your ER stay, but they have not jumped on this idea.   Until they give my frequent visitor card, where possible I want to deal with my kids’ illnesses on my own.
Because I refuse to visit the doctor or get stressed every time my people get sick, I have learned a few tricks.  My friends have been known to call me when their kid has weird symptoms of some kind or another because I’ve seen a lot in my 7 years as a parent, and “oh I was the ER last night” is not an exceptional thing to hear me say.  Sharing is caring so I have compiled a list of 7 things I do when my kids get sick.  

This goes without saying, but this does not replace medical (or valuable) advice. 

1. Start with Vaseline.  When my children tell me they are sore or itchy or rashy or there’s a red spot, or whatever other problem they think they are having on their skin or in their crevices, I put vaseline on it.  (Don’t worry, natural medicine supporters, I use the non-petroleum jelly.)  The way I see it, if vaseline doesn’t make the “problem” go away, then I’ll treat it like an actual problem.  My mother thinks this is irresponsible, but I think it’s genius and she doesn’t live with my people so she doesn’t have a realistic sense of just how much I use this vaseline trick!

2. Trust your instincts about yourself and your children.  Do not always trust your child’s instincts (except when they are bang on, which can happen).  Children make things up and aren’t patient by nature so they don’t give time a chance to heal their wounds.  

3. Always have band-aids.  Do not get into any sort of debate about whether or not a band-aid is required.  If you are willing to have this debate with a child asking for a band-aid, you are not busy enough.  Just give them the damn band-aid and a kiss.

4. If they complain about a tummy ache, first, take them to the bathroom.  I think you know why.  Second, offer them water.   Third, if it is convenient, offer them a hot water bottle, a bucket for potential vomit and space on the couch to lie down.  When I go through these three simple steps, I sometimes solve the tummy ache problem but usually I just make my kid feel like I am taking them seriously.  This is not patronizing.  It is effective.  When I dismiss their complaints, which I am wont to do, they just keep complaining.  They can complain forever.  Besides, what if their tummy ache is a direct result of them thinking that I don’t take them seriously?

Skip the oral temperature taking!

5. If you’re going to take a child’s temperature because you really want an accurate number, do it rectally - even if they are no longer babies.  If they are really, really sick, they won’t have the energy to complain about the rectal temp. taking and then you’ll know for sure that you’re dealing with an actual sick child.

6. Invest in an ear scope thingy.  My kiddos get ear infections all the time but they complain of ear pain even more.  Different things can cause ear pain, not all pain is an infection and some infections do not need to be seen by a doctor.  An ear scope is a good way to save me unnecessary trips to the doctor.  Also checking your children’s ears totally makes you feel like a doctor.  It’s so fun!  

7. Do not over-react when a child falls or crashes into something.  Despite my relaxed attitude about most health related things, I am terrible at this one.  I am the queen of the gasp or embarrassingly loud scream when a kid hits the ground.  I get in trouble from friends for this, but let’s just imagine that an adult fell off their chair or crashed head first into another adult, wouldn’t you ask if they are okay? Ahem; I rest my case.  

Those are my tips.  I probably have a few more, but Miss F who has a tummy ache is currently calling me.  I’m not even making this up in the name of writing!  Luckily she knows the rules; she’s off to the bathroom.  
XO Ajike

Friday, March 14

Facebook COO Teams With Celebrities to " Ban Bossy"

by: April D. Byrd

A hot topic in the news this week has been Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg's campaign to Ban the word "Bossy" as it relates to womyn, from the American dialect. As noted in her book Lean In, a success guide geared toward career womyn, she grew up being called bossy a lot. Sandberg says the term hinders girls from pursuing leadership roles.

"We call girls bossy on the playground," "We call them too aggressive or other B-words in the workplace. They're bossy as little girls, and then they're aggressive, political, shrill, too ambitious as women." 
          -Sandberg told ABC News.

The Ban Bossy Campaign launched with the support of former Secretary Of State Condoleeza Rice and Girls Scouts USA CEO Anna Maria Chávez, Including a video with celebrity cameos from Actress Jennifer Garner, Beyonce', and others. The website gives tips to parents, kids, teachers, etc. on how to encourage young female leaders.

Some speculators and critics are pointing out a problem with "ban bossy". Correspondents from media outlets like CNN, New York Magazine, and Time Magazine suggested that Sandberg should have dug deeper or taken a different approach. Some womyn say the word is not nearly as harmful  as other B-words or slurs used toward  womyn. Perhaps Sandberg chose to keep it light because she also serves as a Director of The Walt Disney Co.

Although Sandberg herself concedes that true change is not as simple as banning one word, She is adamant about the cause:
"This is a word that is symbolic of systemic discouragement of girls to lead. We are not just talking about getting rid of a word, even though we want to get rid of a word," she said. "We're talking about getting rid of the negative messages that hold our daughters back."

Check out the official Video for the #BanBossy Campaign (below):

What are your thoughts about "Ban Bossy" initiative? and disregarding the star power, does anyone else find it totally cool that the CEO of Girl Scouts USA is a woman of color?! Love It!  Leave a comment below and follow the conversation on Trey Anthony's Fan Page.

Wednesday, March 12

My Children's Crappy Stuff Falls Into Four Categories

by Ajike Akande

I am currently struggling with the overwhelming urge to throw out most of my children’s belongings.  It could be that spring is in the air (or it least it should be based on the calendar).  It could be that we have been cooped up inside, existing among their stuff for months now.  It could be that most of the children’s beloved stuff is actually crap!  Their crap falls into three categories.  1) Toys and games that encourage their development (My kids don’t see this stuff as beloved but just stuff they are entitled to.  I’m going to have to address this issue with them).  2) Crap they’ve made and brought home.  Just because you made it during art class, doesn’t make it art.  3) Crap given to them by other children in the form of Valentine’s Day Cards (I hate you St. Valentine) and Loot Bags.  
Regarding crap category number one, it is true that my kids have way too many games and toys but I’m pretty good at removing the things they don’t use and putting the rest in carefully labeled bins.  (I love you label maker!)  
I’m not even going to bother expanding on my issues with crap category number two - my children’s overly glittery “art”, because some of you lovely, kind and hopefully loyal readers are probably artists or art appreciators and I don’t want to deal with your comments about art interpretation and voice and principles of design.  Let’s just say that where much of my children’s art is stored is between me and the recycling bin.  It’s not about the product anyway; it’s about the process.  
Crap category number three, however, is something I’m going to need to discuss.  Please note the following paragraphs may contain harsh opinions.
The other day I almost tossed Miss O’s Valentine Cards.  In my defense, Valentine’s Day happened 26 days ago.  I didn’t do it though.  My little one, with her adorable and sometimes annoying fixations, loves her Valentine’s cards.  They have all the right characteristics for our quirky kid.  A) They are cards.  Cards are the best.  Do not leave any type of card lying around in our house; Miss O will find it and stash it.  B) They are small.  Holy crap small is so, so, good!  C) They were brought home in a bag.  Small cards that can be taken out of a bag, sorted by any number of attributes and returned to the bag?  That’s awesome stuff in O’s world.    With great concern when she heard of my desire to toss the Valentine’s Day cards, Wife said, “They’re her Facebook!   You can’t throw out the cards!”  (I thought this analogy was a little exaggerated – nothing is as good as Facebook, but I see her point.) The Valentine’s Day cards stay.  And because Miss O’s cards stay, everyone’s cards stay.  So on my would-be-pretty display table in the dining room, I have three paper bags full of Valentine’s Day cards.  Damn you beloved stuff!  
If Valentine’s Day cards aren’t bad enough, don’t get me started on loot bags!  For the love of David Suzuki and all things “eco”, we’ve got to stop with the loot bags!  From now on the following note will be pinned to my children when they attend a birthday party:
Dear Adult host of birthday party,
How about I buy your kid a present and say it’s from my kid, and you show your appreciation for the present by NOT giving my kid a bag of junk that I have to sneak out of the house item by item, because they think it’s an actual a bag of prized possessions!  
A Mom Who HATES Loot Bags
And to children who attend a birthday party for one of my children, the following note will be given:
Dear child guest at my kid’s birthday party,
Thank you for coming.  At the city landfill there is a bag of crap with a cute tag with your name on it.  In it is a bunch of stuff that I got at the dollar store to give you and the other kids “from” my kid to show our appreciation for your attendance at their birthday party.  I know your parents are busy; I also know your propensity to become unreasonably attached to crap you get or find so I’ve decided to save your parents the time and you, the pain and just took the bag of dollar store crap directly to the landfill where it will ultimately end up anyway.  
A Mom who HATES Loot Bags
P.S Eat all the sugary junk food that you want; you’re going home to someone else soon!
Look, I’m not a minimalist.  I like stuff as much as the next person, but kids really need to be reigned in.  They need to be taught to identify stuff worth actually keeping and perhaps more importantly, how to organize and maybe even hide their stuff so that I don’t have to look at it all the time!  
Rant over.  Carry on.  
XO Ajike

Friday, March 7

New "Annie" Film Produced by Jay-Z and Will Smith (Video)

by: April D. Byrd

The trailer for The highly anticipated remake of "Annie" finally hit the internet. The remake of the classic 1982  film stars Quvenzhané Wallis, Jamie Foxx, and Cameron Diaz. The film will also feature modern remakes of the signature songs "Hard Knock Life" and "Tomorrow".

The story line features Jamie Foxx as Billionaire Benjamin Stacks, and Quvenzhané Wallis who captured our hearts in "Beasts Of The Southern Wild" in the title role of Annie. As the story goes Stacks, a politician initially uses Annie as a prop to advance his political career, but has a change of heart when the bond between him and Annie (Wallis) grows stronger.

No word on whether Jay-Z's infamous 1998 Hard Knock Life sample made the cut in the new film, but he does serve as a producer along with Will Smith. "Annie" starts playing in theaters on Christmas Day. Until then check out the first official trailer: (Below). 

What are your thoughts on the remake? Do you think the Oscar Winner, and the Oscar Nominee will do it justice? Leave a Comment and join in on the discussion on Trey Anthony's Fan Page.

Wednesday, March 5

Three B's To A Babe

Ten years ago today, Wife and I went on our first date.  When I mentioned to my mother that I was going to write about meeting Wife and our first date, she said, “You’re going to write about that?  I thought you were supposed to write funny stories about raising your kids.”  This is what she says to me every week.  She is a very supportive, non-fan of my blog writing!  Anyway, I pointed out that if it were not for us meeting followed by all the other stuff, we wouldn't have a big, modern family for me to write about.

Wife, (then Lisa) and I met at a boxing class in March 2004.  I had decided to get serious about dating that year and boxing was part of my plan.   You see, I was looking to meet a sporty, public radio loving, babe.  (I was looking for much more than that, but these two things were on the must-have list.) Clearly, I needed a plan to make it happen.  Because I am fundamentally a weirdo, I named the plan - Operation Three Bs to a Babe.  I joined a band to up my cool factor.  I took ballet to keep myself graceful.  And I started boxing because where better to find a sporty babe than at a women’s boxing class!  I know, genius.
A couple of months into boxing I showed up pumped for the regular Sunday class, looking particularly fabulous.  I was wearing a curves-accentuating, tracksuit (yes, matching top & bottom) that featured a racing strip down the side of the arms and pants.  I also had my dreadlocks in pigtails.  It is possible, based on my outfit, that I didn’t think I would be meeting The Babe that morning!  As I was getting ready for class, in walked this hot woman with a sleeveless shirt on.  I made a quick adjustment to my pigtails.
The instructor partnered Lisa, a more experienced boxer and me, a newbie, to do the gym circuit.  Throughout our workout, Lisa kindly helped me with my form and I did my best to shine as an athlete.  Hoping that Lisa was “noticing” me and worried that she didn’t know I wanted to be “noticed” I found several, not so subtle, ways to slip in the phrase, “As a single lesbian…” into our conversation.  Smooth, eh?  
The circuit ended with some ring work so with Lisa, I reluctantly stepped into the boxing ring for the first time.  The coach told Lisa that she could only block, not hit and that I was to try to get a hit in.  I did it!  The first time I met Wife, I punched her square in the nose!  I suspect that was the moment she realized that I was a keeper!  
At the end of class some of us were chatting about Lisa’s band, The Jane Waynes, which I had never heard of and which had a following and a CD in the works.   I decided that that was not the time to tell her about my band which existed only in a basement with four women who rotated instruments because most of us didn’t know how to play any of them well.  Lisa offered to take down our email addresses to be added to the band invite list for shows.  It was at that moment, that I got bold.  I put my email address down on the paper and my phone number (for the Jane Waynes’ phone tree, obviously!)  I left the class pleased with my efforts to “pick-up” and hoped to hear from the boxing class hottie
On Thursday of that same week I received an email from Lisa.  She had tried to call me but had the wrong number so was trying email.  A word of advice: when giving someone your number, write clearly.   I called her immediately and left a message.  When she picked up the message, she was walking her dog and had nowhere to write down my number.  Resourceful Lisa wrote my number in the dirt with a stick and called me back.  She wrote my number in the dirt, people!  How cute is that?
We didn’t waste any time and met up that night.  What really sealed the deal, and no -doubt made me seem irresistible, is my mother dropping me off for our first date! Lisa, my mother and I have been a relationship ever since!  
On our first date, 10 years ago, when we talked about canoe tripping and teaching and public radio and music we had no idea that we were beginning to make the choice that we’ve made every day since - to be together.  Some days it’s a hard choice to make, but it’s one that I keep making.

Happy Anniversary to Wife!  I miss talking about who we are rather than who we’re raising but I know that when The Big, The Middles & The Littles need us in less time consuming ways, we will have plenty to talk about again.  In the meantime, I am so grateful for the love, support and the daily gut laughs! I plan to keep choosing this one.
XO Ajike