Daily Archives: July 2, 2010

Color Me Happy


Have you ever looked at a color and instantly felt an emotional response to it? Whether it was a positive or negative emotion, chances are, we can all recall feeling some kind of way when we put on that special color. Well, you’ll be happy to learn that it’s not all in your head. Researchers and therapists have studied the effects of color on our mind and body for decades. The field of color therapy, although not widely talked about as a form of complimentary medicine, is quite fascinating. The gist of it is this, color therapy is the ancient art of using color and light to treat disease, and enhance health and well-being. Our bodies actually absorb light, which is made up of colors, and each color has a wavelength, frequency or energy associated with it. Researchers say the absorption of these different color wavelengths/frequencies/energies can have a profound effect on the nervous system and the endocrine system.  Eastern forms of medicine associate a chakra with each color based on its healing properties. Whether you subscribe to alternative medicine or not, you have to admit that color effects us in some way shape or form.  That said, if you’re wondering what colors you should be bringing more of into your life, wonder no further. We’ve compiled a list of colors and their proposed associated benefits from Holistic Online. Look for ways to strategically incorporate these colors into your wardrobe, surroundings, diet, etc. based on what you need. Hey it can’t hurt to try can it?

Red – Vitality, strength, sexuality, willpower, and alertness. Red is used to counteract anemia, lack of energy, impotence, and low blood pressure.

Purple – Intense purification; detoxifying of the body; Purple is said to lower blood pressure

Blue – Will power and communication. Blue is a calming color, good for curing insomnia. It can be used for throat problems, asthma, stress, and migraine, and it is good for improving verbal skills.

Orange – Regulates circulation and metabolism. Orange stimulates the thyroid gland, promotes happiness and joyousness. Orange is used to treat depression, hypothyroidism and kidney and lung problems, such as asthma and bronchitis.

Yellow – Intellect and judgment. Yellow stimulates mental ability and concentration, and aids detachment. It can be used to treat rheumatism and arthritis.

Green – Green, the most predominant color on the planet, balances our energies, and can be used to increase our sensitivity and compassion. It represents purity and harmony. It has a calming effect, especially in inflamed conditions of the body. It is soothing to the nervous system and is a great healer. Green builds muscles, bones and other tissue cells.

For more on color therapy check out Holistic Online.

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Spotlight On: Jacque Reid


Born: January 31,  raised in Atlanta, GA

Occupation: Journalist and Media Personality; Founder of Jacque Reid Media

Education: BA in Print Journalism from Clark Atlanta University; MA Broadcast Journalism from Northwestern University

Career Journey: Jacque has been seen on everything from CBS and NBC affiliated programs to national news programs like CNN Headline News. From 2001- 2005 we all can recall watching her anchor the BET Nightly News. In 2004 she rejoined CNN to cover the Republican National Convention as a special correspondent and commentator for Larry King Live. Jacque even had a recurring stint on ABC’s The View during 2006-2007. She has continued to lend her talents to a variety of networks conducting high profile interviews and hosting special programs.

Where You Can Find Her These Days: Just recently Jacque co-hosted the fifth annual 2010 NV Awards which salute urban professionals and entrepreneurs.  Currently Jacque is the co-host of the widely popular D.L Hughley Morning Show on New York’s 98.7 Kiss FM Radio. She also appears on the Tom Joyner Morning Show educating listeners on the state of Black women around the world on her featured segment “Inside Her Story.” Jacque is also trying her hand at reality TV as a cast member on the hit show “Let’s Talk About Pep” on VH1.

Fun Facts: She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. Jacque is also a health and fitness enthusiast who enjoys reading, arts and entertainment and community service with children.

What’s Next For Jacque: Keep up with her here

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Filed under Phenomenal Women

Is Lauryn Hill Really Making a Comeback?


Lauryn Hill recently sat down for an interview with NPR and talked about many things including her vocal style, why she stopped putting out music and what we’ve all been waiting for……how she plans to get back into the studio. That’s right, though we’ve heard about her “going crazy,” missing shows, showing bazaar behavior on stage, etc, we still remember that amazing female talent in the Fugees, beautiful voice in Sister Act 2, and singer/songwriter phenom of the late 90s. And who can forget the solo album that we could listen to and sing along with from the first song to the last.

So please be serious and really come back this time, Lauryn. We can’t take you playing with our emotions!

Check out the full NPR interview with Lauryn Hill here

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Our Favorite Moments from the BET Awards


Photos Courtesy of BET.com

Sunday night was the 10th Anniversary of the BET Awards. As we did last year, we reluctantly watched, hoping that we wouldn’t be too embarrassed or disappointed. And you know what, we were pleasantly surprised. Those focus groups and/or feedback from last year’s debauchery seemed to be taken into account in this year’s event. Packed with surprises, faces old and new, great performances and tributes  (though not many “awards”), it was overall a much improved event. Here were some of our favorite moments of the night:

Nia Long and Larenz Tate bringing back Love Jones: “Love Jones” was one of the best black love stories on film in our lifetime. When Nia and Larenz brought back poetry from the movie including “A Blues for Nina,” we saw they still have undeniable chemistry (it was getting heated on stage!)! Can we get a “Love Jones 2′?

El DeBarge Performance: Where has HE been hiding? Didn’t we all love El growing up? He was a part of that black male pop/R&B vocalist triple threat: Michael, Prince, and El.  Did you ever wonder why long hair, makeup, and a high-pitched voice was considered sexy in the 80s? I don’t know, but we loved them all, didn’t we? But I digress… Anyway, El was one of the biggest surprises of the night, coming out looking like the black James Dean and performing some of our favorite songs from the pique of his career.

John Legend receiving the Humanitarian Award: It was nice to see BET honor John Legend for his philanthropic and charity work he has done over the years. Well deserved!

Michael Jackson Tribute: We will never forget what Chris Brown did to Rihanna. His actions were despicable and unacceptable. However, he did rock the house on Sunday night. One of the best Michael Jackson tributes we’ve seen.

Prince Tribute: Prince was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award and many people tuned in just for that performance. Though Prince did not perform himself (bummer!), we did get an amazing mix of fresh faces (Janelle Monae and Esperanza Spalding) and familiar voices (Patti LaBelle and Alicia Keys). And you know you are a legend when Patti LaBelle kicks off her Louboutin singing your song!

Nominee Baby Photos: It was a cute touch to show the baby pictures of all of the award nominees. The photo shown in this picture is Sade. Wasn’t she a cutie?

What were your favorite moments from the BET Awards?

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Filed under Black Music Month, Music, TV

Why I Love Mint.com


By Guest Contributor, Petronella Lugemwa

When Mint.com first came out, I was wary of giving online access to a company that would track my spending, but after some research and several recommendations including a close friend whose marriage counselor recommended that she and her fiancé setup a Mint account to increase transparency about how their money was being spent, I decided to sign up…. and (drum roll), I’m in L-O-V-E.

It has been an eye-opening experience. Why didn’t I do this earlier? In less than 10 minutes of setting up my Mint account, I have greater transparency into how my money is being managed, which has given me the clarity and confidence to make my money work harder for me, create realistic budgets and reevaluate my spending and saving habits.

What is Mint.com?
Mint is an online personal financial management tool created by CEO and founder Aaron Patzer.

As a user, you give Mint access to all your financial accounts by sharing your login and password (no personal information is requested) and it aggregates all your financial data from all your accounts to give you a complete financial picture of how your money is being spent.

The best part is that it saves you time and energy since you no longer have to login into 3+ different accounts. Through a single Mint.com sign-on, you get a summary of how much you own versus owe taking into account your checking, savings, assets, investment, credit card, retirement and student loans accounts.

Is it secure?
YES! Mint has the same levels of encryption and security used by major banks and is verified by a couple of different third party security auditing companies. It was recently acquired by Intuit, the same people who manage the tax filing and accounting programs: Turbotax and Quicken.
Additionally, Mint does not request any personal information. So worst case scenario, if someone hacked into your Mint account, they would only see how your money is being spent (e.g., on April 8, someone spent $200 at Macy’s); he or she couldn’t identify who you are or move any money around.

How much does it cost? It’s FREE!

Top 10 Features and Benefits
So why am I in L-O-V-E with Mint? Here are my top 10 features:

1. Budget: You can build a budget and it automatically tracks what you’re spending against it using categories. When I received a Mint alert that I’d exceeded my clothing budget by $100, I went into my Mint account drilled down by account, date and category to specifically understand how I had blown my budget and then decided I really didn’t need the new pair of shoes and dress I’d bought the day before; so I returned them.
2. Layout: It has a beautiful, easy to use and intuitive layout.
3. Goals: You can setup financial goals and develop an action plan. I wanted to save money for a trip so Mint walked me through all the details and suggested how much I needed to save and I can see how much I’m tracking towards my goal.
4. Alerts: Mint offers all sorts of alerts from deposits, credit card due dates, finance charges, possible fraudulent expenses, etc. When I discovered that one month, I had paid $15 in ATM fees (that’s a good meal at Chipotle I could have enjoyed), I became more conscious about when and where I withdrew money from the ATM.
5. Categories: Mint automatically categorizes each expense but you can also edit and add notes to each expense as needed. For example, you can tag tax-related expenses (e.g., tithes, donations or business expenses), which can be very helpful come tax time.
6. Trends: You can see and understand your spending trends and how you compare versus the rest of the nation. For example, versus the average US person, are you saving more or eating out more than the average US person?
7. Savings: It offers recommendations for ways you can save even more money (eg: credit cards, insurance, CDs, retirement) with non-evasive offers and you decide if you’d like to follow-up on them.
8. Drill Down Features: If you really want to understand how your money is being spent, you can drill down by account, category, merchant or time period into your financial history.
9. Clarity and confidence: If you don’t yet have a financial advisor, setting up an account with Mint.com is a good place to start.
10. Cost: It’s FREE!

So what are you waiting for? It only takes a max of 10 minutes!

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