February 20, 2017

Southern Hospitality #Bama

Sometimes, you meet people who imprint on your life and begin to find connections with entities that connect with them.  All imprints are a lesson and some imprints continue to add impressions onto your timeline.

My life in Texas has really opened my world to this unusual thing called, "Southern Hospitality".  Houston itself is a melting pot of people from all over the US and the world yet, what's interesting is when I meet true southern people.


I do not know much about Alabama other than driving through Mobile one time and getting stuck in f**king traffic for 5, 6 hours! WTF!

But, I have made some friends from Alabama who've imprinted upon my life.


I made my first unexpected friend from Alabama almost 2 years ago.  It was a gentleman whom did not allow me to simply disregard him.  I was my usual self, blunt and abrasive but, my Northern persona didn't offend his Southern Hospitality. 

Initially I thought, What's wrong with this dude? He must like being abused.  Realistically, it is more so, What's wrong with me and why am I so guarded and quick to automatically deflect people? 


Somehow, this Alabama man and I created a unique friendship at which most people wouldn't understand it...but what is for me to understand, isn't for you to understand.

I can identify that I am a little different from others in the sense I do not see relationships, infatuation, or even love the same way as mainstream society depicts it.  I see what makes most sense to me.


I think of my own friends, all from different backgrounds, experiences, neighborhoods, and countries.  We have collectively made a connection with one another because of small similarities that caught our interest but, bigger differences that keep us in each others' lives. 

Our friends are the family that we get to choose.  I inadvertently made so many varying arrays of friendships that my circle is as diverse as my persona.  I love it.

- Love Raya



EMAIL: xoxo.rayal@gmail.com


So you'd be surprised where I got this outfit at....Forever21!
Yup, you read it correctly.  The hipster store that targets size zero tweens.  I went in because I had a store credit when I returned something for my daughter a few months back.  I figured I'd just pick up a few cute scarves or socks but, nope.  I went in and became trapped with the prices!

What turns me away from the store isn't just rail thin models; the place is massive and always seems disorganized with misplaced items everywhere.  The sales racks are atrocious and the regular racks are over stuffed with confusion but, I entertain the retailer a few times a year.

My Look:  The dress was $12.99 and the duster was on sale for $3.90!!!  Yet, what I am most impressed with is the material of both garments.  It's not thin and doesn't feel 'cheap'...although, I am going to be conscious of how wash these...Plus, the dress is simple enough for me to dress up or, as you can see, dress down.  This still doesn't convince me to become an avid Forever21 shopper though.


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February 16, 2017

Lover vs. Husband

Lover vs. Husband


The word "boyfriend" is not in my personal dictionary.  You are either a lover or a husband.  A lover can become a husband and a husband is also a lover. 

The term, Lover, is just my fancy way of saying "friends with benefits"...high emphasis on the 'friends' part.   There's not been many lovers in my repertoire mainly because I did not see good enough qualities within many men I came across.  That's not to say they weren't any good, I just didn't feel they were good for me and I shut out a man very quickly if I don't even see friendship qualities within him.



I will admit, after getting over my failed relationship of many years, I toyed with a few men; used them for my pleasure and quickly discarded them.  I didn't want to know a lot about them and I didn't want them to know a lot about me.  As I stopped doing that, I started getting into the dating scene for a very short period of time, during which, I realized I didn't know what I wanted in a relationship but, I didn't want anything similar to my last one so, I closed myself off.

I subsequently developed my standard of a Lover.  He isn't just a friend with a benefit; he has potential for longevity with me if I see the right characteristics but, he still doesn't get husband privileges.  My definition on that is not very clear since my experience with this ideal is very minimal and certain circumstances may allow for certain privileges but, not just any man can be my lover and just because he is a friend doesn't automatically give him more opportunity to any closer to me.  It's not only the physical intimacy that makes the difference, there must be equal parts of mental intimacy.  If I only wanted to have sex, then I'd just revert back to what I was doing several years ago and have my pick of the litter but, that is not appealing to me any longer.

I now require more.  

I am NOT here and available for every man who thinks I'm pretty.  If he is going to be a benefit, then he needs to be a benefit in many ways.  And if I decide I don't want any kind of future with a man, I am merciless when eliminating him out of my life as if he never existed...No, not my best quality but, I really don't owe him anything.

If a man does happen to become my Lover and is able to keep that moniker for more than 6 months to a year without losing momentum on either side, then he is a GREAT man and could eventually be my husband because he was extremely patient with me and saw what I wasn't willing to see...He'd still have to make the first move and be the one to lead us into a relationship though.

I'm worth the trouble, right? 😊😁

- Love Raya

Don't get excited about the hat, I lost a challenge.



EMAIL: xoxo.rayal@gmail.com



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February 10, 2017

Expectations of a Woman

Expectations of a Woman

Women, please understand that WE are the pinnacle of life.  Throughout history, women were place on a pedestal, men fought each other for our attention and love....

Now, what the hell has happened to us?
We parade ourselves like cheap ornaments and chase after well-to-do men who may or may not be married, and get easily sensitive when we don't feel good enough.
**Even, I'm not void of snapping a few "thirst trap" pictures here and there.

YOU WERE BORN GOOD ENOUGH!


It may not seem obvious in my posts but, I am a very reserved and conservative woman.

I believe a woman should take pride in her deliverance to the world and not showcase herself in a way that may cause doubt...then again, any way we behave will incite critics for all angles.

I won't throw myself at a man simply because he buys me a drink or give me a compliments.  To be honest, I get a little uncomfortable when a man offers to buy me a drink...What is his motive? What does he want in return? How often does he do this? What are his intentions?...I admit that it is not great to think this way but, this is what the social scene has become for singles...or people who portray being single...<< Yall ain't shit and some of you are my friends but, you still ain't shit.

Almost every time I go to a happy hour or just swing through one of my favorite bars, there is a man or two willing to buy me endless drink and overload me with compliments.  It is endearing and sweet BUT, where is this going?  Especially, since I did not come out to find a lover.  So, I listen and add to the conversation but, I keep it very casual, although, at least I think I do.  I don't just bat my eyes and ask for another drink or how much is in his 401K.  No, I ask how his day was, give praises to his accomplishments, inquire how he made his way to this bar, and wish him safe travels home.  This has become my basic dialogue with men.  Some of them try to derail me and talk about continuing the night, No sir, it was nice to meet you, have a good night.

Remember, men will be men among men...mainly foolish and stupid.  I'm sorry fellas, I love you guys but, we know the truth. It is our right as women to know better, behave better, deliver better, expect better, and just BE BETTER.


Now when starting a new relationship...

I do not believe a woman should make compromises early on when meeting a man.  Once you make the first life adjustment for him, he'll expect you to continue to make more adjustments catering to him without him doing much in return. No, no, no...if we are going to be serious with one another then my changes will need to equal your changes; whatever change we feel is necessary and conducive to our relationship.

I also do not believe a woman should share her relationship details with everyone.  It ain't official if it's not on Facebook! << You can keep that feeble thinking away from me.  I've seen so many people on my timeline share just a little too much about their personal life and then all of a sudden, the relationship disappears.   It is great to be proud of who you are with and it is also great to share your happiness with a few pictures or comments here and there but, keep in mind, many people disguise their negativity with empty praise. 

Keep your personal business to a minimum.  We don't need to know why you're arguing, or why you are upset because you let him use your car and now he hasn't come home in two days, or that he does not contribute to any of your bills but, he's always in your house.  << YES, for some reason women still treat grown men like their sons, taking care of them, catering to their needs and getting little appreciation in return.  My son has no idea how pampered he is.  While dropping him off a school the other morning, he demanded I go to McDonald's and get him food before I pick him up at the end of the day.  He also requested I put his tablet in my bag and not to touch it.

You want to be a good woman, GREAT, you want o show him you can maintain a relationship, manage a home, and conduct business, AWESOME but, be a good woman to a DESERVING MAN.  Otherwise, just be his friend with set limitations of your willingness and support; add on as he adds on...value.

Many times you can prove to a man that you are a good woman without doing the most for him.  My intentions for my future husband will not be much different from my intentions for my friends, and that is to support, uplift, motivate, and love them...of course, my husband's benefits will be on a different level...but still, it is the same basis formula.

-Love Raya




EMAIL: xoxo.rayal@gmail.com


Ladies, NO, just NO!
😞😞😞

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January 30, 2017

Expectations of a Man

Expectations of a Man

Just because you are nice to a woman, does not mean your are entitled to her affections...


⇑⇑ Who is this man?
Can we find him and make him POTUS?!


Be a good human, don't put on that facade to only gain a woman's attention.  If I am already not showing you interest, nothing in your "niceness" will change my mind.  The only thing that I will think is, "Huh, he's sweet." ...that's it and I will move on about my day...sorry, my avid readers know that I'm a non-emotional, no tolerance woman right now.  As far as the newbies, 'Welcome, this is my madness!'

I won't take anything from a nice guy's behavior but, I also don't want the nice guy to deplete all his efforts into me when I am not available or willing to give him the same.  It's one thing to become a friend who I can count on and who I can converse to without it being awkward, it's another thing to be a man who's waiting on a weak moment to make his move on me.  This is why I am always hesitant to make male friends, I never really know their true intentions, especially the ones who revealed their feelings towards me in the beginning.

Yet, even if I do not adhere to his advances, it doesn't mean he should revert to being an asshole towards me...no sir, you don't want to play that game with a woman because you will learn very quick, whom is more vicious of the sexes.

...insert my petty face below...


And if you are the type of man to go toe-to-toe with a woman, then what type of man are you really??

Moving on, let's refer to the song, "Don't Be Cruel" by Bobby Brown and some of the lyrics...

Ohhhh, girl
As long as I've been giving my love to you
You should be giving me your love too
But you just keep on actin' just like a fool
You know it ain't cool
......

Girl, I work so hard for you from 9 to 5
So you could have the finer things in life
Since you're the kind that's never satisfied


YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO TREAT A WOMAN LIKE SHE IS THE GREATEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED TO YOU! 

Okay to be fair, the song is more about a man and a woman, presumably in a relationship or maybe the early stages of dating, so there could be reasons why he is doing the most for this woman.  Either way, a good man is a good man all around, not just for the sake of a woman.  If he wants to extend his expectations, so be it but, don't get upset at the woman because of something you decided to do to make her happy and she didn't seem to appreciate it.

(Don't worry fellas, my next post is about the Expectations of a Woman, and trust me, my thoughts on that are more exhaustive.)

If you feel you are not being appreciated or she does not show you the same qualities, THEN WHY ARE YOU STILL THERE?  This is no different than a woman giving her all to a man who doesn't deserve it.  Move it along and find someone who shares your same views on relationships and love.

For me, the only thing I expect from any man is understanding and respect of my space, that is the minimum for a potential husband. 

Now, if a man does graduate to become my spouse or a serious partner at the very least, then my expectations will be a little more, because I will expect him to consider me in his decisions if we are planning to build a future together.  I would expect for him to be side by side with me in maintaining stability for our present state and for whatever future goals we have.  This includes but, not limited to, location of main residence, type and function of residence, financial allocations, parenting tactics, involvement in social activities, charity or volunteering, retirement goals, vacation plans, and the list goes on. 

I will agree it is harder to get into a relationship now because the make-up of the man has changed mainly because the make-up of the woman has evolved.  Everything that I am doing in my life right now, I don't want to stop, I want to expand on it.  Make more money, travel more, have more time to facilitate with friends and family.  If a man can add upon that, then GREAT but, even if he is willing to do that for me, doesn't mean I am owed him anything due to his willingness.  Nor will I jump at the opportunity to take advantage of his generosity....again, 'Expectations of a Woman' in the next post.



EMAIL: xoxo.rayal@gmail.com

Below, my son has been learning the camera on his tablet...



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January 27, 2017

Self-Confidence

Self-Confidence

I struggled with having confidence growing up and in my early adulthood.  It did not help that I was teased for multiple reason when I was a kid and it did not help that my ex continuously cheated on me with women who were nothing like me.  In the past years, I have come into my own and have learned to love ALL OF ME and others have noticed my confidence within moments of meeting me.  I want for my daughter and my son to carry themselves in this same light.


This school year, my 11 year old daughter is a middle-schooler in Klein ISD.  She is getting good grades and making new friends but, three times she has come home and told me about incidents where another student(s) had a bit of a problem with her.

The first incident, she was sitting with her friends in the cafeteria and a boy demand she move from "his" seat.  There were no assigned seats and his items were not in or near the chair.  He made a scene, threatening to physically remove her himself. (If he laid one finger on my daughter, Klein ISD would not know how to handle me.) Eventually, my daughter stated he fussed off.  The first thing I asked my daughter was how she behaved when he was telling her to move.  She stated she continued to tell him no and went back to her conversation with her friends.  My concern here is why did this young man feel he "owned" a seat that was not specifically for him and why did he thought threatening someone would get his way?  What is he seeing at home???  Aggressive children usually learn from the aggression around them.

The second incident was when my daughter was on the school bus.  She was talking with her friends when a girl told her to shut up and when my daughter did not comply the girl began in antagonize her.  Again, I asked my daughter how she behaved when this girl was making a problem with her.  I told my daughter that many times an aggressive reaction to an aggressor does not solve the issue, it only escalates it.  I know my daughter and I know she has a bit of a smart mouth and I let her know that people with bad attitudes tend to always find themselves in the middle chaos so she needs to be mindful of what she says and how she says things to people; bullies have a hard time learning this.  But what was up with the other girl?  Was my daughter's conversation with her friends so intolerable that she had to rudely speak out?  Possible anger management issues?

The third time, she told me a few boys on the bus were making fun of her looks. Of each of the incidence, this is the one that really irritated me the most...A young boy grows to become a man and these knuckleheads may have been foolish towards my daughter a few times and have stopped but, it bothers me that they have not been taught the emotional damage it can do to a girl when you poke fun of her appearance.  She can become self-conscious and begin to develop low self-esteem further finding comfort from non-agreeable people or create behaviors that may be more damaging.  I will not allow this for my daughter.

I am not sending my daughter to argue with other people.  I am not sending her to figure out what other's issues are.  I am sending her to school to learn the fundamentals of problem solving, discipline, organization, and comprehension.  She will make an array of friends and will learn on her own the types of people who are good to be around.  As I continue to raise my daughter, I cannot control how others are being raised but, I can help her understand her emotions and how not to act irrationally putting herself in a compromising predicament and I can keep her from loosing her self-confidence.

Below, I posted affirmations on my daughter's bathroom mirror to continuously remind her she is an AWESOME kid and that she has every reason to love herself!  My daughter has a healthy amount of self-confidence already and I want her to continue with it.


And of course there is always "no room in the budget" for these types of lessons but, I would love to see schools offer classes that teach the youth to identify their inner person and learn how to not allow ill emotions dictate their reaction towards others.  It is important to teach kids to love themselves and accept those around them for who they are.  It is also important to help them identify certain conflicts within themselves.  We have all these "self-help" books and seminars for adults, why not provide these same ideals for children while they are beginning to plant their feet in life?  We underestimate the importance of self-awareness and in turn, we end up with people blaming others for their own problems because they do not know how to reevaluate themselves.
Sorry, my children will not fall victim to that.

- Love Raya



EMAIL: xoxo.rayal@gmail.com

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