Monday, March 31, 2014

5 Year Lockaversary #Sisterlocks

5 Year Lockaversary

Each lockaversary affords the opportunity to reflect on lock progress, to continue what works best, and to discontinue the unsuccessful. It also gives me a chance to recommit to providing my hair the best care. I admit locks at times have made me a little lazy.

In this 5th year of lockdom, I have taken on more responsibility by retightening my own hair. This makes having locks not so much fun. It's hard work. For me it's hard work that lasts for hours. The not so fun part of maintenance is quickly forgotten when I am able to rock a new style with my freshly retightened locks.

Some things I am looking forward to:

  • New styles and techniques for longer locks. There are so many styles that I want to try!
  • Retightening my whole head by myself and improving on the time it takes.
  • Going all black again (I want to dye it back black. I am not liking the two tones)


  • Lint (Anyone have any tips?)
  • Swimming (I want to swim more but wonder if it will cause lock issues.)

Below are a few pictures of styles I have done within the last year. I also have comparison shots of my locks over the years.

Braided Updo on Sisterlocks
Bantu Knot Out

Day 1 vs. Day 1790 of Sisterlocks

1 year of Sisterlock growth

Be sure to check out my Youtube channel for tutorials of some of the styles and more pictures.

If you have any questions about my lock experience, let me know in the comments. When is your lockaversary and how long have you had your locks?

-Love, Life, and Locks

Accept the Challenge and Spit Some Verses #NaPoWriMo

National Poetry Writing Month #NaPoWriMo kick starts in two hours and 55 minutes! I'm quite excited. I am challenging myself. I am determined to write at least one poem for each day in April. The pressure is on! No backing out now. I will be posting the poems here on the blog. Stay tuned for my verses! If you plan to join me, let me know so that I can check out your verses as well. :)

-Love, Life, and Verses

Thursday, March 27, 2014

No Fail Chicken Muffins (Gluten-Free) #FoodieFriday

I am always looking for a good healthy protein snack. I lucked up when I found this idea while browsing Instagram. Mankofit posted a recipe and I crafted it to my liking. Below is the recipe for how I make this delicious snack. It can be eaten as a breakfast snack, lunch snack, or dinner snack.

If you decide to try it or if you put your own spin to it let me know in the comments. I think that's the beauty of cooking, adding your own flare to the recipe.

You can add, substitute, or change almost any of the ingredients. It's a no fail recipe. It's bound to be good! 

*optional ingredients
2 lbs Ground chicken (or turkey)
2 large eggs
2 tsp of Salt
2 tsp of Pepper
* 1 Garlic clove
* 1/3 cup of Onion
* 1/2 stalk of Celery
Grape Tomatoes 
* 4 Mini Red/yellow/orange peppers
* 1/3 cup of Spinach
* 2 tsp of Turmeric
* 3 tbs of Honey mustard

Food processor
Big bowl
Cupcake parchment cups
Cupcake/muffin pan

Step by Step:
*Preheat oven to 400 degrees
1. Use a food processor to mix the following: celery, onions, spinach, garlic cloves, peppers
2. Open the ground chicken and put into a big bowl.
3. Add to the bowl the chopped ingredients from the food processor.
4. Mix everything (chicken and veggies) together.
5. Add the salt, pepper, turmeric, and honey mustard.
6. Mix in two large eggs.
7. Scoop the mixed ingredients into the muffin pan.
8. Bake chicken muffins for 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees.



Friday, March 21, 2014

Avocado Popsicles | Foodie Friday

First and foremost, I love avocados. I discovered their smooth goodness about three years ago. I regularly ate lunch with one of my co-workers and she would have an avocado with every meal. At that time, I couldn't understand her excitement in eating the green blob. Just observing her motivated me to give avocados a try. I tried to eat it by itself. I barely ate any. Then I tried again, but this time more successfully. I loved how the avocado tasted on taco salad. I slowly progressed from there to consuming avocado by itself and mixed in with several different dishes.

After browsing Pinterest months ago, I discovered that avocado could be prepared as a dessert. Specifically it could be made into a popsicle. I had tasted avocado hundreds of times at this point and I couldn't imagine how this vegetable could be used in a dessert or how it could be considered sweet. I stalked posts to find a recipe for the avocado popsicle. I finally found one and I tweaked it to meet my taste buds.

As we welcome in Spring and it's cool breeze, prepare the avocado popsicle for you and your family as a cool treat in the middle of the day or to end your day.

Let me know in the comment section if you plan to try this recipe.

This recipe makes 4 popsicles

2 Ripe avocado
1/3 cup of Brown sugar or sweetener of your choice
1 Lime
1/2 cup of Water

Popsicle containers, bowl, spoon, food processor, measuring cups, knife

Step by Step
1. Boil 1/2 cup of water and mix in the 1/2 cup of brown sugar.
2. Cut the avocados and scoop out the meat into the food processor.
3. Squeeze lime over the avocado.
4. Pour the brown sugar mixture into the food processor.
5. Blend all ingredients together until a smooth consistency.
6. Pour the mixture into the popsicle containers.
7. Keep in the freezer for at least 8 hours.

Run warm water over the outside of the container and it will loosen so you can grab the popsicle.


Check out the video below for a visual of how to prepare this easy sweet dessert.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Celebrating Locks Beauty and Versatility

Thank you to the beautiful ladies that submitted a picture for the Lock Shout Out video. I wanted to showcase the beauty and versatility of locks by creating this video to share with my viewers. This was also a way to share and connect with other locked sisters. Go check out their Youtube and instagram pages. If you're interested in being featured in the next lock shout out video, leave it in the comments.

Productivity Affects How We Endure a Storm

The sirens were blaring and I could hear the hoarse whistling of the wind tearing through the tree branches outside my bedroom window. I peeked outside just as a flash of lightening burst throughout the cloudy skies. I jumped  back and walked to the couch. The weatherman was pointing to the colored area where the tornado warning was the strongest. My heart had started to beat faster and all my thoughts collided. What if the storm came to my area? I had no idea what I would do.

The weatherman kept saying, "If you're in this area, it's time to take cover." I had heard over the years that in a house you go to the tub and cover yourself with a mattress. I couldn't see how I was going to be able to carry my full size mattress in to my bathroom alone. That's the feeling that reverberated through my body. I was alone. There was no one there to keep me calm. No one to remind me that it was going to be okay. No one to help me carry the mattress. I was scared.

I wanted to keep listening to the weatherman, but I also wanted to stop listening. His report was adding to the tension. Sitting on the couch as the sirens continued to play was not working, so I got up and went to the bathroom. I started cleaning the tub, then I cleaned the sink, and then I cleaned the toilet. My focus was no longer on the storm outside. Inside my bathroom, it was calm and I was cleaning.

As I cleaned, the sirens stopped. As I cleaned, my heart beat slowed to its normal rhythmic pattern. As I cleaned, my thoughts were no longer racing. By the time I made it back to the couch, I was calm, and the storm outside had lost its power.

This whole situation ignited the thoughts of how productivity affects how we endure a storm. Whether spiritual, physical, emotional, or relational we all face all types of life storms. No one is exempt. I was literally in a tornado warning and  thunderstorm. The things that allowed me to endure then are the same things that will allow me to endure during the other storms of life. There are four key things that should help anyone endure a storm.

#1. During a life storm, keep busy. 
On the night of the real thunderstorm, I busied myself with cleaning my bathroom. When we are idle, we tend to replay the problem or conflict we are experiencing. The cleaning allowed me to keep my mind off something I had no control over. Basically I couldn't stop the storm by thinking about how much damage it could do to me. I needed to keep busy and focus on something that I could manage.

#2. Be around others

During this storm, I felt alone, and there was physically no one else around me. During the storm of life people often feel alone. In some cases, people feel like they are the only one dealing with a situation or problem. When people reach out to others they realize that someone else is also experiencing or have experienced the same situation. Usually if they have experienced it, then they can help others through it.

#3. Take cover

The night of the real storm could have been more serious than how things actually transpired. In any storm people should protect themselves. This could be protecting yourself with the Word of God. Saying a simple prayer of protection to comfort yourself, helps people to endure any tough situation. Apart of taking cover is preparing and knowing what to do in the situation. We don't prepare the best in the middle of the situation, but before it begins.

#4. Believe the end is soon

The hope factor is important. Believe that the storm will not last forever. The entire thunderstorm lasted about an hour and thirty minutes. The storms of life may last varying lengths, but it always ends. Every storm has an end time.

Prepare for the storm before it comes. People are often overcome my a storm that attacked them by surprise and they were not prepared to fight back. It's not a matter of whether or not there will be a storm. The occurrence of a storm is definite. When and its impact are unknown variables that we have to be prepared to handle.

I know I'm going to prepare by making sure I start lifting weights so I can drag my mattress into the bathroom during the next storm. 

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Locked and Loving It Contest/ Giveaway

As a way to help commemorate my upcoming lockaversary I will be sponsoring a Locked and Loving It Contest/Giveaway. The giveaway consist of a lock sock, Knotty Boy shampoo bar, and lock loops. I plan to sponsor two contest. This is the first one. Enjoy!
Locked and Loving It Contest/Giveaway

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Happy Birthday Internet! A Personal Trip Down Memory Lane

Twenty-five years ago today, Sir Tim Berners-Lee wrote a proposal for the internet. Happy Birthday World Wide Web! I don't know if Sir Tim- Berners-Lee had imagined how many people he would affect with the invention, but it has changed the world in a vast way. The internet as we know it has grown through a lot of changes. As it matures it seems to get better in many ways, but also seems to pose more concerns. The internet has been called the "information super highway". It provides a platform for just about any and everything a person could imagine.

The internet has been around for as long as I have been around. I cannot recall my first time on the internet, but I do remember some of my beginning experiences. Let's take a personal trip down memory lane as I acknowledge Twelve ways the internet has affected me within these twenty-five years.

1. Email
In 6th grade I signed up for my first free email account through Hotmail. I have had a few other accounts since then. Email has proved useful for virtually keeping up with professional and personal information. In some cases it has taken the place of calling.

2. Live journal
This personal journal helped me to process my life as a college student.

3. Youtube
To me, Youtube is internet itself. It has at times been a source of entertainment, education, motivation, awareness, and news. I have been signed up since 2006 and making videos since 2008. It's my entertainment and hobby of choice and can't imagine if it didn't exist or ceased to exist.

4. Blogging
My thoughts on paper are cool but my thoughts on a computer screen seem magical.

5. Web page
At one point in my life I was obsessed with learning html so that I could create a webpage about myself.

6. Facebook
Since the first time I signed up in 2006 it's been a way to keep up with family, friends, and new acquaintances and away to share what's going on in my life through pictures and commentary. It's also been a safe outlet for keeping in touch with new people without giving away your personal number.

7. Twitter
It reminds me of a sound bit. Life is fast at times and tweets can capture the simple thoughts and things that we experience in a concise way.

8. Friendship
I have met a few friends through the internet. I doubt I would have connected with them had it not been for the internet. It also allows me to keep up with friends that live far away.

9. Banking
The advancements for online banking has allowed money transfers and bill pay to be quicker than the snap of my fingers. I don't have to wait to cash a check; it can be directly deposited into my account.

10. Education
In undergrad and grad school I had opportunities to connect within the education community for classes. I attended one online class and I didn't have to go to campus.

11. Information
I can research at the click of a button and quickly find the answer to just about anything

12. Connections
I have learned about many opportunities through postings on the internet.

Can you imagine what life would be life without the internet?

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Banana Pancakes topped with Fried Apples (Gluten-Free)

I spend my Saturday mornings perfecting two things: the pancake or the omelet. I find myself creating different renditions of both. Each entree exciting a new burst of flavors in my mouth. I'm a foodie! I find joy in cooking a good healthy meal. I find joy in sharing with my readers what I did. It's in hopes that it will quench your taste buds and bring you joy as well.

Let's get started...


  • 1 granny smith apple
  • 1/2  of a ripe banana
  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 1 large egg
  • olive oil
  • butter 

Fried Apples
1. Cut the skin off the granny smith apple and cut it into rectangle pieces.
2. Turn the stove to medium heat and add butter.
3. Add the apples and coat with the butter that has been melting.
4. Sprinkle with a teaspoon of cinnamon and lower the heat to low.
5. Stir occasionally for 10-15 minutes until you see that the apples are soft.


Banana Pancakes
1. In a bowl smash the ripe banana. Add in the teaspoon of cinnamon and 1/2 tablespoon of honey. mix it all together.
2. Add a large egg to the ingredients and continue mixing.
3. In another skillet, add four cap fulls of olive oil and turn to medium-high heat.

*Tip* The skillet needs to be hot when you add the pancake batter, but lower it so that the pancake will cook evenly and not burn.

4. Pour pancake batter into the skillet. Reduce heat to low-medium.

*Tip* When the pancake is ready to flip it should be able to slide around if you tilt the skillet.

5. Flip the pancake and increase heat to medium. After 1 minute reduce heat back to low- medium.

If this recipe was helpful, please let me know in the comments. Enjoy!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Flour-less Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies (Gluten-Free)

Within the past year I cut out eating refined white flour. Initially I was saddened because that meant that I could no longer enjoy all of the delicious bread and sweets that I was use to eating. Turns out that I can still enjoy great desserts, but I just need to make a few modifications. It's healthier anyway, so I'm convinced that this way is much better than the products I was consuming before. 

So needless to say, I love when I find a tasty recipe that quenches my sweet tooth and does not interrupt my flour-free diet. I also love sharing with others great recipes, because it may be the tip that's needed at just the right time. 

Below is a step by step guide to how I make Flour-less Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies. I'm sure you're wondering, 'how can you make a cookie without flour?' Well it's possible and I'll show you how to do it!

The ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup of Natural Peanut Butter
  • 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 3 tablespoons of Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • *Optional Flaxseed Oil

  • Measuring cups
  • Large bowl
  • Non-stick Cooking Spray
  • parchment paper
  • baking pan/sheet

6-Steps to a Great Snack
1. Mix in a large bowl the peanut butter, flaxseed oil, honey, and vanilla extract.
2. After mixing ingredients well, add the two large eggs and continue to mix all of the ingredients together.
3. Add in the mini chocolate chips.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
5. Scoop out the mixture onto parchment paper. Scoop out based on the size of the cookie you would like to make.
* Make sure to spray the parchment paper with non stick cooking spray
6. Place the cookies in the oven to bake for 10-15 minutes. 

Check out the video below to watch me make these cookies.

 If you plan to try this recipe or have tried this recipe, please let me know in the comments. Also please share so that others can experience this sweet delicious treat! 


Prototype Mama

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Introduction in 3rd Perspective

Please do not copy

Hello Wonderful People!

The woman behind the computer screen is currently wearing a hair bonnet, gray lounge pants, and a free t-shirt that she received several years ago. When she is by herself, she likes to just relax and be comfortable. She's a real person that experiences real things.

She has repurposed this blog several times. The current focus of this blog is to showcase her 5 year sisterlock journey, cooking recipes, product reviews, crochet, inspirational vignettes, creative writing, and any other things that are apart of her experiences.

She is a Christian by faith, daughter, aunt, and a friend to many. In her spare time she likes to do all the things that make up this blog. She's all about exploration, adventure, and new experiences. She loves to travel, write, read, and take pictures.

She's the most content when she's surrounded around caring people who genuinely seek to be better and in turn motivate each other to be better.

She has been creating videos on Youtube for the past six years and she absolutely loves it. The video version of her hair journey is documented on her Youtube page.

Thank you for stopping by!  I look forward to hearing from you. :-)

J. Renee

Stay Connected with me!
Fotki Album:

Monday, March 3, 2014

Shout Out Video Coming Soon

Calling all locked sistahs and brothas!!! Open to all people wearing locks.

As a way to celebrate my upcoming lockaversary I want to showcase the beauty and uniqueness of locks.

To be included in the video:
1. Email a lock picture
2. Youtube/Instagram name
3. Share video

Deadline March 16th, 2014