90’s TV-Living Single and Natural Hair

What does the TV show Living Single, and being natural have to do with one another?  Did you know that cast of the show were all natural haired divas during the 90’s?  Well read further and I will tell you more about it.

My Afro Puff

During the early 90’s I was a shy, black, teen girl trying to survive high school.  I grew up in a poor family so I made it my mission to get a job as soon job as soon as possible, so I could buy the things I wanted.  Then at the age of 15 I finally got one!  Ya’ll, you couldn’t tell me nothing!  I could now buy all the clothes, eyeliner, and lip gloss I wanted!  But, the best thing about work was I could finally start dabbling in some of the up-to-date hair styles I wanted to try.  Yes indeed.  I would spend hours in the mirror slicking, curling, and braiding my hair.    Just because I was shy, didn’t mean my hair couldn’t look good!

Fast forward to 1993.  One of the best years of my life.  I graduated from high school and then later on that year found out I was pregnant with my first son.   Yes ma’am, yes sir,  I was on a roller coaster right of emotions.

During the summer of 1993 was when the TV show Living Single came on air.  Living Single immediately became one of my favorite shows.  Who could resist an intelligent cast of young, black, positive, trendy, and empowered individuals.  With all the gang activity that was going on during that period of time, it was nice to cut on the TV see black folks actually laughing and not fighting one another.

The cast of Living Single

What also caught my eye was the beautiful hairstyles these women were wearing. I was like a kid in a candy store trying to mimic their styles on my own head.  The best thing about it was, each cast member was rocking their natural hair long before it became the “It” thing again.

Let me break it down by cast member:

  • Khadijah James  (Queen Latifah) – Got her hair pressed and flat ironed on a regular basis.  Her hair was so straight and bouncy we all thought she had a perm.  But no, her hairstylist just had major skills!
  • Synclaire James  (Kim Coles) – Had micro-braids that looked like they were flowing from her scalp.  Many blessings to her hair stylist who kept her hair fresh to deaf at all times and  left her edges intact!
  • Regina “Regine” Hunter  (Kim Fields) – She had every wig imaginable!  She was the master of protective styles.  But, did you know she  had beautiful locs underneath the whole time!
  • Maxine Shaw  (Erika Alexander) had yarn braids that framed her face perfectly. I used to stare hard at the screen trying to figure out how they were so perfect, and looked like locs  at the same time.
  • Kyle Barker  (T.C. Carson)  – Had locs and through-out the years we got to follow his loc journey.
  • Overton Wakefield Jones (John Henton)  – Was bald and beautiful!

So there you have it.  The cast of Living Single were a major influence on the Natural Hair Community way back then and are still an influencing us now thanks to Hulu streaming their show!  So if you’ve never had a chance to experience these game changers in action, here is your chance.

With that said, I’m signing off for now so I can begin my Living Single Marathon.

Oh, don’t forget to

like, comment, share and subscribe!  Talk to you later Roses!



Special Needs Transportation

Proper Special Needs Transportation is important to millions of families around the world.  Today I am going to share with you my current concerns and what I have done about it.
The Issue:  
I have been having issues with my youngest son’s  school district’s  Special Needs transportation lately. There have been unscheduled/random changes in bus #’s or bus drivers on my son’s bus route.   I also have not been pleased with the random drop-off times on my son’s PM bus.
How to Relay Your Concerns:
I have addressed my  concerns with the transportation department directly in the past regarding other issues during the past school year.  I am the type of parent who will make a round of phone calls and/or emails to express my concerns to ALL parties involved.  Tactfully of course.  After, follow-up conversations with the school district’s transportation department’s supervisor, my son’s school, his therapist, and our family advocate. I was able to resolve my grievances to my satisfaction. 
Sadly,  this school year I’ve had to give a refresher course of what this mama expects!  Random bus drivers have heard my mouth and responded by saying they are short-staffed and there are last-minute changes they don’t even know about until they get to the school to pick up children.  Even my conversation with the Special Needs Transportation receptionist has proved  pressure is at an all time high due to the shortage of drivers. 
Trust me, I truly do empathize with them.
School districts have enough problems with so-called adults having kids, then acting like they don’t have good sense when dealing with other adults of authority, or their own children.  Personally I refuse to have the title “unfit parent” placed on my forehead for any reason.  Unfortunately, these types of parents forget that all eyes are already on them at all times and that most adults involved in our child’s development outside of the house are mandatory reporters.
What Special Needs Transportation Expects
Here is a summary of some key points in the written Special Needs Transportation agreement mailed out each school year to parents and caregivers:
  •  The caregiver or parent is to be notified by phone (in advance) whenever there is a change to the designated bus# their child normally rides.
  • The parent or caregiver is to be notified if the regular bus driver or bus route changes
  • The caregiver or parent is to be notified when the pick-up and drop-off time will deviate from the  regular schedule. Or changed permanently.
  • With Special Needs Transportation the parent or caregiver is required to be at the bus stop at the designated pick-up and  drop-off times. If the caregiver or parent is not at the designated
    Mandatory Reporter Definition
    What is a Mandatory Reporter

    bus stop at the designated drop-off time: The bus driver has the right to drive the child all the way back to the school then call CPS to report possible neglect. (In Oregon -Multnomah County/Reynolds School District)

So to make a long story short. I do my part daily for my son to ensure that my son is safe and his life has some sort of consistency.   I also expect anyone involved in his care to do the same.  Best believe, if something doesn’t sit right with me I will speak on it.  I am his number one advocate of course!  It is up to all of us to speak on behalf of our loved ones.
In Closing:
I can go on and on, but it’s time to close out this blog post.

So let me make it clear: When it comes to Special Needs Transportation, I understand permanent, properly trained drivers are hard to come by.  I am also aware that budget cuts have made things more difficult in many parts of the world.  But, it’s a proven fact, sporadic changes in the regular schedule of a child (mine)with severe ADHD and/or Autism is NOT OK.  Any slight change will throw him & countless others of track, and spark behavioral difficulties. 

Facebook group
The Advocacy Garden Facebook Group created by OlenaRosanne

If we don’t learn to voice our concerns how else will people involved in shaping our children know there’s a problem? 

I feel it is my responsibility hold other’s accountable the same way I am held accountable. And I hope you feel the same way to.  Let’s all continue to advocate for all special need individuals!
Have you or someone you know, had issues with Special Needs Transportation?  Let me know.   Also, consider joining my Facebook Group “The Advocacy Garden“.  In my group I discuss subjects surrounding Special Needs and Mental Health Advocacy.  I would love to respond to any  comments you may have as well. So please  make sure you like, share, comment and subscribe.

Hair Care = Self-Care

I have an intense love of all things natural hair, specifically my own natural hair.  What can I say, hair care is my self-care.  It’s the one thing I do for myself that truly gives me joy.

FYI this was one of my first posts back in January 2017, that I decided to revamp and reblog.  So let's get into it!
Natural Hair is Versatile
Natural Hair is Versatile

In my opinion, your natural hair is something that authentically belongs to you and no one else. It is a work of art.  A crown of jewels no one can ever take away from you.  And the best thing is, it grows straight out of your own heads; no purchase required!

How does any of this tie in to self-care you may ask?  Keep reading and I will tell you.

Now time to get personal:  As a woman, God has blessed me to be naturally nurturing.  I’m a person who always puts everyone else’s needs before my own.  Count on me to come to your rescue with

Self Reflection is Self-Care
Learn to Lead Yourself, Before you Attempt to Lead Others.

help in a blink of an eye and think nothing of it.   But you know what, over time attending to everyone else’s needs and not your own will slowly eat away at you like a cancer! It can riddle you with anxiety & depression (among other things).  At this point self-care becomes a must!  Self care is an essential tool needed to begin the healing process/or prevent mental illness all together!

When approached with the question, “What forms of self-care will you implement this week?”  My response was always, “I don’t know.”  It really would take me a while to think of things I wanted to do for myself, but wouldn’t due to lack of time, motivation, or money.

According to the Fort Garry Women’s Resource Centre

Self care is care provided “for you, by you.” It’s about identifying your own needs and taking steps to meet them. It is taking the time to do some of the activities that nurture you. Self-care is about taking proper care of yourself and treating yourself as kindly as you treat others.
You deserve good things.
You! Yes You. Deserve It #TheBest

So, one day I seriously thought about it and said to myself, “Olena do you realize you have been practicing a form of self-care all along?” I thought about how I consistently make an effort to care for my own natural hair .  It’s part of my weekly routine.

Think about it fellow naturalistas.  While caring for your own hair or having someone else do it for you, you will/are able to:

  • Feel joy –  Who doesn’t like their hair clean and looking good!
  • Practice mindfulness – Concentrate on how you hair looks, smells, and  feels.  Take some deep breaths.
  • Improve self-esteem –  It’s a proud feeling to see what you have accomplished and even better when others notice.
  • Feel a sense of achievement – Once your hair care session is done, you will be able to cross it off  your, “Things To Do.”
  • Feel relaxed – Tension is relieved when your scalp is massaged, or the heat of a hair dryer hits your shoulders
  • Give you a chance to read – While deep conditioning or sitting under a hair dryer, it’s the perfect time to catch up on things you want to read.
  •  Participate in retail therapy – Buying hair accessories, head wraps, or hair products is fun, and will showcase your creativity.
  • Initiate healthier living –  When you drink more water, take vitamins, and eat more fruits & vegetables; it is good for your hair and overall health.

So do you see what I mean?  In my opinion caring for my natural hair takes me to my happy place.  It calms me down and allows me to express myself in my own original way.   Apparently, others enjoy it as well, as seen in the growth of my Instagram platform.

My Question Regarding Self Care

Have you integrated some sort of self-care into your life?  What ways do you practice self-care on a regular basis.  Would you like to see more posts regarding mental wellness?  Let me know, and take care of yourselves! And as always, don’t forget to like, subscribe, comment, and share!

Listen, I Run On Faith

I have been asked over and over:  How do you do it? Or, I don’t see how you do it!  I used to reply by saying, “I don’t know!”  or “I do it for my kids.” But the truth be told, my faith keeps me going.  Yes people, I Run on Faith.

I Run On Faith
A few from the I Run On Faith Collection. Available now.

If you follow me on Instagram and Twitter, you’ve seen the recent birth of my, “I Run on Faith” Collection.   Those who know me personally, and those who have followed my story for the past 3 years via Instagram, have an idea of what the words “I Run on Faith” mean to me.

Trust me, this is not about some marketing strategy to get more followers or subscribers. Nor, is this about capitalizing on the holiday shoppers surfing the internet right now.  So, don’t get it twisted! This is about the life of Olena Rosanne.  This is about how I honestly survive from one day to the next.

In The Beginning

Roughly, 3 years ago I started my Instagram account as a means of reading the inspirational quotes from others going through the same struggles I was going through at the time.  Three years ago, high-stress and anxiety required my attention and ultimately took me out of the 9-5 atmosphere.  I was in a deep, dark place and those quotes were what I needed to begin realizing I was not the only one in the world suffering, and that I didn’t have to suffer alone.  At a later date, I will delve further into that time of my life.

I am also a mother of 2 kings.  At the time of this blog post, they are 23 and 9 years old.  One of my children has special needs that are extremely difficult, to say the least. That will be a post for another day, because I could go on and on about why I Run On Faith.

I Run On Faith
Listen…. I Run On Faith

Anyway, my boys have always seen me struggle in some way, shape, or form. Through some impossible times!  But, they also have seen with their own eyes and heard how much my faith is God always gets me through.  Faith is no a stranger in my home, and in my opinion, faith shouldn’t be a stranger in yours.

The Inspiration Behind I Run On Faith

The inspirational Instagram quotes (along with Gospel music and The Bible) ministered to me years ago.  I want to praise God and share my ministry with the world as well. Which is why I decided to start this blog and my YouTube channel close to 1 year ago.

I Run On Faith
I didn’t come this far to only come this far. I Run On Faith.

Yes, I believe I am living proof of what faith can do.  Faith promotes personal growth and healing without an expiration date.  Yes, I still struggle day to day, and each day I Run On Faith.  Trust and believe I know where my help comes from!  I am not afraid to say it, and will shout it from the rooftops. I Run on Faith!

If you can relate to this, please like, comment, share, and subscribe.  I pray this will touch at least one person.  If you are interested in checking out my I Run On Faith Collection further, please click here.

Until next time Roses!

#BuyBlack is for ALL Colors, Right?

No, I’m not crazy, and no I’m not trying to be controversial. But, let’s keep it real. Would you ONLY accept money from black people?  Or, would you rather receive money from ALL people.  What does the hashtag #BuyBlack mean to you?

Today is Black Friday, November 24, 2017.  All over the world people are trying to catch some of the biggest sales of the year.  This also is the time of the year that new entrepreneurs and small businesses are trying to climb up the entrepreneurial ladder. Marketing is at an all time high because everyone is doing the most to make that beloved dollar.  The problem is, I see a lot of small businesses selling themselves short.

Learn to Lead Yourself, Before you Attempt to Lead Others.

As a black woman, stepping my pinky  toe out into entrepreneurial waters is scary.  As an introvert I am in the process of learning not to be so shy about marketing.  I am also learning that I in no shape, way, or form want to sell myself short.  As a Black woman using the hashtag #BuyBlack is great to promote my products. I love my people, but have we thought about how it could be misinterpreted by other ethnicities who are contemplating spending their dollars with you?


I see a lot of tweets, posts, and meme’s about Buying Black.  It’s great and promotes a sense of unity among black people who do/don’t already support their own race. It’s true, that we (black people) have habitually supported every other ethnic group before our own.  Sad but true.

Hair Will Come and Go But Your CROWN Remains!

It’s my belief that the #BuyBlack hashtag was created to open each other’s eyes to what we as consumers were doing.  Problem is, there are some black entrepreneurs, who just expect black people to drop what they are doing and support their business based on skin color alone. Ummm no!  That’s not how real-life works honey.  Newsflash!!  A black business will not survive on just black consumers alone!

In my world, you may happen to be black and I might actually support you.  But, I have other reasons as well as to why I may or may not choose to #BuyBlack.

  • If you haven’t singled anyone out, you’ve caught my eye
  • You’re a true entrepreneur.
  • You are a business here for the long haul, not just during major holiday seasons.
  • Your work ethic is impressive
  • I truly want to support you as a person.

So, as you get ready to spend your hard-earned dollars this black Friday, I challenge you to put a little more thought into the businesses you choose to support.

Are you ready to make a change?

Consumers: Do you choose to purchase from a business just because they used the #BuyBlack hashtag in their social media marketing?  Entrepreneurs:  Do you cater your marketing towards only one race, demographic, or culture? Let me know down below. Also, please like and share because knowledge is power.

Talk to you later!

Do You Wrap for Wrap Wednesday?

Wrap Wednesday is something I started doing on my Instagram page about 2 years ago.   If you follow me  on Instagram, you’re probably used to me showcasing the wrap I’m wearing for that day, along with the mantra I created to go with it.

My Wrap Wednesday Mantra

Lift your head high

like the Royalty you are,

It’s Wrap Wednesday y’all!

Head Wraps are Awesome!

Whether you call it a wrap, head wrap, turban or scarf.  Wednesday is the day to show it off.  Wear you wrap proud.  Give everyone something creative and colorful to look at.  Let them stare at you in awe as you hold your head high and walk by like the royalty you are!

I take pride in showing the world the natural beauty that comes from wrapping a piece of material on my head. Head wraps have stood the test of time.  From ancient Africa, through slavery,  and so on.  It has been a symbol of modesty, power, strength, faith, fashion, beauty and royalty.

It’s a Protective Style

Now of course before you put on that wrap please remember to give your hair some TLC with some  LOC= Liquid, Oil, Cream or LOCO =  Liquid, Oil, Cream, Oil. Locking in moisture is a must, even when your hair is covered.   Wraps are great protective styles, but it does no good if your strands are dying of thirst underneath!

I’m always asked, “How do you do that?” or ” I want to wear a wrap but I don’t know how to.”  My answer is I just make it up as I go.  Don’t worry, there are no head wrap judges walking the streets and you won’t get a ticket if it doesn’t look a certain way! All you have to do is  wrap, tie, and tuck any which way you want.  There is no certain way to tie a head wrap. Just do what feels right to you.  It’s YOUR work of art!

Continued Inspiration

I plan to continue sharing with you my personal pictures on Wrap Wednesday as head wrap inspiration.  And of course continue head wrap tutorials from time to time on my YouTube Channel.  So stay tuned.

Do you wear head wraps?  Do you want to, but haven’t tried yet?  Let me know!


Let The Thanksgiving Memes Begin!

November is here, and so are Thanksgiving Memes! I’m excited to say the least.  What can I say, reality is just funny sometimes.  The  things that make us laugh till we can’t breathe originate from the true stories of other people!  Truth hurts!

Let’s Just Keep It Real About Thanksgiving Memes

Whether, it’s a funny phrase, facial expression, or an ugly sweater.  Someone said it, made that expression, or came up with the idea for that ugly sweater! So when you see a meme specifically targeting that funny experience, with a picture to back it up, it’s hilarious! 
Anything goes when it comes to Thanksgiving memes.  What do I mean by that you ask? Everyone of us have had a catty, sassy, or sarcastic thought that has come to mind.  Picture those thoughts plastered above a funny picture or video.  You can’t tell me that’s not funny!  Everyone has a family member, co-worker, or friend who always says the funniest things, with a straight face! Or, maybe it’s just me…. Help me out people!! LOL

Anyway, last November, I spent hours upon hours laughing till my cheeks were sore at the Thanksgiving Memes posted by people on Instagram and Pinterest.  It was so bad , I know I  annoyed my boys will all my noise.  Every so often I would look up, gasping for air with my youngest looking at me as if I was crazy! LOL  As for my oldest,  I’m sure he got sick of me interrupting him a new Thanksgiving meme every two  minutes while he was busy trying to be a grown man-child.

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on the things we are truly thankful for.  What are you thankful for?  Immediately what comes to mind is our health, family, and friends.  It’s also a time when stress and anxiety is at an all time high!  November is also a cold and dreary month.  What better way to perk up, then to scroll through hilarious Thanksgiving Memes that are sure  to turn your frown upside down!

Are you ready for some laughs?  Well I am!

Natural in the NW

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