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Hey guys! Long time no hear from, eh? Well, y’all already know I’m in Army ROTC at my school…
Well, I was at Fort Lewis, Washington conducting a giant training exercise known as LDAC (Leadership Development and Assessment Course) or “Warrior Forge”, designed to assess the readiness and key skills of the 6500 or so future Army officers that are about to begin their fourth year of college.

WWII-style barracks.. :/ Saddens consumes me

This whole thing is basically a big war game with confidence building exercises thrown in… or you could think of it as a shorter, nicer, slightly-less-intense Basic Training for ROTC students. Either way, you are definitely not in control of your time, your activities, or your showers. Whatever you bring is what you have, with the exception of a few items you can buy from the troop store.

Oh, and did I mention we were “in the field”, i.e. sleeping either outside or in tents, for 17 out of 29 days?

So, with this lack of time, supplies, and showers came the question on every tightly coiled mind as we geared up to leave for LDAC: “What the fudge am I going to do with my hair for a MONTH???”

Short answer: braids

Braids braids braids braids and more braids.

I spent 12 hours putting micro-braids into my own natural hair (no weave added) to get ready for camp, then I put a small bottle (2 ounces) full of leave-in conditioner in my bag and called it a day. Why? Because at camps like this, everyone has an over-sized bottle of shampoo and is more than willing to share in the shower with anyone else in their platoon (probably to boost those peer evaluations), but no one will have the leave-in that coily-heads need except a fellow coily-head, and I was the only one in my company of 250 students. Wow. My platoon had many, many questions and the hair touch-ery was abound.

Anywho, let’s just say Warrior Forge presented my hair with quite a few challenges, but I conquered them all!

Challenge #1: Braiding
Solution #1: Blow the hair out using a comb attachment after detangling and adding a leave-in (Garnier Fructis), then part and braid in small sections using Shea Moisture Coconut Hibiscus Curl Enhancing Smoothie. Spritz lightly with half-n-half water and hair lotion recipe to curl the ends when done braiding. Twelve hours later and I was one cute soldier!

Challenge #2: No bonnet in the barracks
Solution #2: Moisturize your situation a lot more frequently, and hide those ends! The scratchy wool blankets that we sleep on brought nothing but nightmares and frizz to my head, not to mention incredible dryness. To combat these effects, I went ahead and wet my ends every other night while we were in the barracks, then applied my leave-in and tucked my ends under. I may have been unprepared for the frizz, but my hair was NOT going to be on my pillow when I left!

Challenge #3: Too much tension
Solution #3: Wearing your hair in buns and ponytails for a month can really mess with your hairline! I thought I was doing a good job by leaving the braids from my temples out of my bun and just tucking them gently into the sides, but what I forgot was something pretty interesting: your nape is your hairline too, and those hairs are just as fragile as the ones in the front. About 6 days into LDAC, I discovered little tension bumps on my lower left nape and had to start making looser ponytails, or gently pulling those braids once they were in the ponytail to give them a little slack. By day 12, the bumps were gone and my nape was loving me again.

Challenge #4: Dirty Hair
Solution #4: Two words: canteen salon. We only got to shower once a week once we left the barracks and began to live in the field, and we were sweating like pigs every day, so our ice-cold canteen salons kept us scalp-sore free and smelling… semi-OK. This was crucial in the field. CRUCIAL.

Challenge #5: CS Gas
CS gas, also known as tear gas, is something that you will encounter at LDAC, specifically in the gas chamber on day 8. The gas will suck, but what sucks much worse is that it gets into your clothes and hair and will reactivate when you sweat. This means you need to wash your hair as soon as possible after being exposed to the gas or you will end up re-exposing yourself at a very inconvenient time… like in your sleeping bag at about 3 AM. Yeah, I learn lessons the hard way.
Solution #5: Wash your hair with your head DOWN so as not to wash any CS residue into your eyes. This, like the last tip, is crucial. Otherwise, you will have what we refer to in the military as a “bad day”.

Well, I’m tired, and that’s all I can remember right now, so I’ll write more tomorrow. Until then…

Peace, Love, and Braids,

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Hey Guys,

Sorry for blitzing you with posts today but…let’s be real: when have I ever claimed to be consistent?

I’m trying to get better at it, but honestly, some of these posts take research, time… and time.

…and until recently, I was very short on time.

But today, I woke up, saw my hair, and thought only one thing:

Damn.  I left my hair gel in Atlanta.

What am I to do?  I look homeless.

Not knocking homeless people, but I’d definitely fallen on hard times.  To top it all off, I’d left my wallet in my mom’s car, and she was at work 30 miles away.

So I waited for her to get home, and ran off to Kroger with my mad-hair-scientist-side skipping gleefully along beside the car.

Flax seeds for $2.59? Check.

Ziploc containers for $2.00? Check.

Old pair of stockings I found in my momma’s drawer? Check.

Youtube?  Check!

So, ladies and gentleman, I followed Naptural85 recipe for making flax seed hair gel, with a few add-ins, of course.

For those of you who don’t like to watch videos, here’s the recipe:

  • 2 cups water
  • 1/4 cup flax seeds
  • 1 pair old pantyhose to act as a strainer
  • 1 saucepan
  • 2 spoons
  • some vanilla extract or lemon extract to curb the smell (optional)

Here are the steps:

  1. Pour the flax seeds and water into the saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Stir for 5-10 minutes, until the water becomes relatively viscous (thick) and a white, foamy film forms over about 1/3 of the surface
  3. Put the pantyhose over the container with the foot inside of it to catch the flax seeds
  4. Pour the gel and seeds from the saucepan into the pantyhose and strain
  5. Add a couple of drops each of the lemon and vanilla extracts to make the gel smell like lemon cake rather than… [insert yucky smell here]
  6. Mix and allow to cool
  7. Enjoy for up to three weeks without adding a preservative

I’ll review it as soon as I actually try it (I promise).

Peace, Love, and Kitchen Wizardry,


PS: Nappy Holidays

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Hi World.

So, I’ll just cut straight to the meat on this one:

The Distinguished_Gentleman wants a relationship.

… and I’m not too thrilled about this ish.

I mean yeah, I like him and yeah, he likes me, and yeah, he has some piercings that I’m a little too into (don’t judge me for my freak-like-tendencies)…

… and yeah, he gives the best kisses in the world and cooks for me and massages my legs when I’m sore from ROTC…

But what if it ends?

You see, I’m really starting to care about D_G, and if, for some odd reason, our relationship ended (which is more likely than not)… well… I just don’t want to hurt like that again.

And how am I supposed to tell him about my celibacy?  Do I just wait until it comes up or should I tell him now and gauge his reaction?  What if he starts acting funny?  Although I’d be better off without him, it would still hurt.

Now I’m saying all of this in order to get the point across that while I do feel that I  am better equipped now than I was 55 days ago to deal with a relationship because of this celibacy challenge, I may have taken a few steps backwards in the sense of being able to be in one.  I know I can be faithful and honest and understanding and all that other jazz, but I don’t think, especially in the case of D_G, that it’s any easier for me to lose someone that I care about.

Does that every become easy?

Peace, Love, and Celibacy


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Ayurvedic Coils: Amla

Hi Guys!

As we all know, Thanksgiving is only a couple of days away and that means this little college student gets to go home and use a quality shower, or at least a sink with a spray attachment!  You can probably all tell that my hair is in for a little babying this holiday, and, after my second visit to the Indian grocery here in Atlanta, I’ve decided that I’d like to get in on a little bit of this Amla action that’s been all over the boards I lurk on.

Yes, I am a lurker.  What?!  That’s how I get my best hair tips!

Now, being that no one should attempt to do anything to their hair without researching the effects it could have and how to do it correctly, I decided to do what every good researcher does:

I googled it.

… and I liked what I saw!

Amla (also known as “Indian Gooseberry”) is a fruit about the sized of a lemon with high levels of vitamin C and ascorbic

Amla fruit!

acid.  This strange Indian fruit has the ability to:

  • lower cholesterol (extract – according to recent studies)
  • controlling blood glucose levels (extract – also according to recent studies)
  • be used as a skin toner
  • help with rheumatism
  • darken hair due to its high tannin content (powder or oil)
  • prevent premature graying (powder or oil)
  • prevent hair fall (powder or oil)
  • add volume, shine, and enhance curl (often used to counteract the curl-loosening affects of henna)

So… I was left sitting on my way-too-high twin XL bed after googling this strange fruit, wondering, “Well how in the world am I supposed to use this powder?”

Well, it’s actually pretty simple:

  1. Mix 100g amla powder with about a cup of hot water to make a very thick paste.
  2. Slowly pour and mix in more water until the paste loosens up and is spreadable on hair.
  3. Spread onto the hair in sections.
  4. Wrap hair in Saran Wrap and allow the paste to sit on the hair for 30 minutes.
  5. Rinse, deep condition, and enjoy your coils!

Alright then, coilies; there you have it!  Hopefully I’ve provided you with enough information to successfully Amla your hair.  If not, feel free to use the comment box for questions!

… and the cable in my dorm room just went out for the third time this week (it’s only Tuesday, mind you)…


Peace, Love, and Amla!



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A Random Thought

Hey World…

You know what?  As children, we never quite understand our parents and why they seek to protect us.  We argue, fuss, and fight with them daily because of the things they do in order to keep us safe.  This is how they show us love.  One thing I’ve noticed is that parents get frustrated when we don’t understand this fact.  I guess I can understand why.

But why don’t parents understand the same instinct their children have for them?  That they’d do anything for them?  That we love them with all of our hearts?

Just a random thought.

Peace, Love, and Ride-or-Die Children,


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Hey Peoples,

This week has been VERY trying for me emotionally, physically, and… hair-ally?  We’ve almost completed the moving process, which involved A LOT of sweating, lifting, and losing stuff…

Like losing my beloved spray bottle.

I don’t know how this happened.  I honestly do not know.  I mean, my elderly aunts, grandma, mom, and I were all sitting around, packing things in boxes, shoving them in car trunks, and complaining about the heat.  It was your typical midsummer night’s NIGHTMARE here in Georgia and we were none to happy to be living it.  We take everything over to the new house, unpack, and put EVERYTHING in it’s rightful place; the food is in the kitchen, the TV is in the living room, my bed is in my room, et cetera, et cetera…

But somehow, my spray bottle just didn’t make it.  And I didn’t find this out at a decent time of day, oh no, because that would make life all too simple, now wouldn’t it?

I figured it out at 11:15 PM, after I’d already taken my hair down and broken out my Bee Mine Bee Hold Curly Butter in hopes of having extra sexy hair for once this week.  #failure  I looked like Buckwheat and was tearing my new place UP trying to find something that, in my mom’s words, “is less than a dollar at Wal-Mart”.  Then she proceeded to make a 10-10-3-2-1 reference that I refuse to repeat.

So, three headbands and a pair of orange “Jesus Sandals” later, I took the hint and went down to Wal-Mart with two dollars in my pocket and a dream between my ears: a dream that one day (preferably tomorrow), I would have a big, sexy, luxurious braid-n-curl of doom.  But alas, this is but the beginning of the journey.

So I walk into Wal-Mart in jeans, a t-shirt, and a fairly juicy-tabulous puff accented with two silver headbands, and all I want is a spray bottle.  I’m ignoring every guy I see (and I saw some cuties) in hot pursuit of my saving grace: a neon colored, barely functioning spray bottle.  Y’all, when I say I had that bottle in my hand in seconds, please know that I am NOT exaggerating.

The problem came when I got to the check-out line… the ONLY one that was open in the entire store.

The creepy man in front of me had a buggy FULL of groceries and felt the need to smile at me repeatedly; the creepy man behind me was far too close for my comfort and I’m absolutely positive that he forgot to brush that morning… and several mornings before that.


So I’m in line, with a bit of an attitude, waiting on Mr. Smiley in front of me to pay for his $199.81 (I kid you not) worth of midnight groceries when Sir-Stinks-A-Lot behind me does the unthinkable:

*in the most condescending voice ever* “Aye girl, when’s the last time you’ve seen a salon?”

Mr. Smiley froze, awkward smile in full effect, while the teenage dream (not) behind Sir-Stinks-A-Lot nearly chokes on his gum and I turn around after deciding, in that moment, that I had had just about enough that day.

“Gee, I don’t know… perhaps it was around the same time that you saw a toothbrush… NOW BACK UP.  You are too stinky to be standing so close to civilized people!”

Yeah, I said it.  Am I tall enough to be talking to random people like that?  Maybe not… but all 132 pounds, 5 feet, and 2 inches of me meant it.  F his whole stinky life.

Teen Dream nearly pisses himself laughing, Mr. Smiley’s jaw hits the floor, and Sir-Stinks-A-Lot shuts his mouth (thank God).  I know this is wrong, but it felt sssoooo incredibly good to take out my frustrations on a perfectly deserving person.  I mean, seriously, that junk is better than sex.  You guys should try it.

The best part of the situation came 3 minutes later when I left Wal-Mart with my spray bottle, a small bag of Reece’s Pieces, and lot of stress off my back.

Peace, Love, and Spray Bottle Drama,


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…because when you move, you have to steal your neighbors’ sucky internet in order to post to your blog.  Please bear with me.  I have a few articles written up, but probably won’t upload them until tomorrow, when I make my trip to McDonald’s to use their super-fast internet!

Peace, Love, and Internet,


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