All posts by janetsjournee

Hi! My name is Janet and I consider this blog to be a log of my "journee." By reading this blog, you will see the world through my eyes in the city of Philadelphia, and sometimes in NYC and NJ. I like to attend and review events that have to do with fashion, networking, business, music, art, community service, and more. On this blog, you'll also find me sharing inspirational posts that inspire me, tid bits of my life and "journee", the joys of motherhood, my art, the hard parts of life, and so much more. Thank you for stopping by and if you like what you read, then please hit the subscribe button. Thanks for coming by and I hope that you come back for more! You can e-mail me with any questions or requests at janetsjournee@yahoo.com . Social Media: Instagram/ Twitter/ Facebook @janetsjournee Freelance Writing Articles: www.examiner.com/user-todd-janet cbslocal.philadelphia.com/tag/janet-todd

%$#Life….got that figured out yet???

Once upon a time I thought that I had life all figured out…yup…but I was wrong!

IMG_0039

I always thought I knew what I was doing and what was going to happen next.  I had life all figured out, before giving myself a chance to live it.  That all changed when a “monkey wrench” was thrown into my plans!  Back in November 2014, I was in a very minor car accident that left no harm to my vehicle.  Instead…something rare was discovered on my heart.

I didn’t know it then, but I had a “thymoma” on my heart a.k.a. cancer of the thymus gland at stage 2.  I never felt sick or anything strange with my heart or chest area before, but I am so grateful to God that this mass was found!  A few months later, in early January, I had it removed.  It was a very difficult time period from November to January.  I had no idea what was  going on in my body.  All we knew is that it was an “unknown mass” on my heart at the time.  All the events of getting blood work done, MRI’s, doctor’s visits and being told that I couldn’t have a biopsy done because there was a possibility that the needle could go through my heart if I coughed or sneezed on the operating table….did not put me at ease, needless to say.

During this time, I was very uneasy, avoided people, avoided phone calls from the surgeon…it was a tough time mentally and emotionally to grasp this new reality.  I had never been hospitalized before, except for the birth of my child…so all of this was very weird and shocking.  As the day grew nearer for my surgery to take place, I shed a ton of tears in private.  I also disclosed to all of my family members what I was facing.  The most important part was for everything to go right, so that I would be around to raise and watch my wonderful child grow.

However, as it became closer to the day of my surgery, something took place on the inside of me….a major transition of emotions. On the inside, I had become bolder and more confident.  More confident in knowing that I’ll be okay and come out of surgery even greater and stronger than before.  Weird sense of intuition, but I knew I’d be okay as the day grew closer.  I put all of my trust in God.  However, the night before my surgery I couldn’t sleep…I might’ve slept for about two hours…the suspense in waiting kept me up for most of the night.

January 12th was here before I knew it…and I was a nervous wreck!  I was off to the hospital and it wasn’t long before I was in preparation for the surgery to take place.  I remember being wheeled back into the room and seeing many rows of scissors before they performed the robotic surgery on my heart.  Not long after freaking out in the operating room, I fell asleep and only remember what came next…

Which was the excruciating pain that I was in after being cut open and poked and prodded everywhere!  LOL!

The entire experience was a major journey and turn of events in my life.  I was in tons of pain during recovery and home for nearly a month.  Soon after healing up…I underwent six weeks of radiation therapy every morning before going to work.  Throughout all of this, I am truly thankful to God, my family, friends, co-workers, doctors, surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, and therapists for their support, encouragement, and kindness.

When it comes down to it…I thought that I had life all figured out.  I knew what was next, hey I knew it all.  HA!  As for having life figured out, I don’t.  And that is okay, because this sudden turn of events has ignited a strength in me that won’t die.  I’ve encountered so many emotions along this path from sorrow to uneasiness, to a strength to live life fully.  I may not have life figured out, but I choose to live and that’s half the battle to living a fulfilled life.

Life may throw some unexpected turn of events your way, but embrace them as part of your “journee” for a learning experience that cannot be compared to anything else.  Trust God.

~As always…thanks for stopping and feel free to share your thoughts and comments below.

Advertisements

TunnelVision

image

Living life is a journey and a road that we’re all traveling. Along the way we come across some speed bumps and road blocks that may hinder us from going the desired rate that we imagined to reach our goals. However, we should in no way allow that to deter us from the desired outcome that we planned for. Although the plans to reach your goals may change along the way, don’t let that stop you from achieving what you have set your mind to do.

Things will not always turn out as we think they should. When that happens, we should reroute to pick ourselves up and keep moving forward. Don’t hesitate, move forward, there is more joy in accomplishing what you are passionate about than giving up and creating an excuse that’ll make you feel better. Where there is a will, there is a way, so set your mind to it and make that dream happen.

All things are possible if you believe, are you willing to believe? Do you have faith that you can overcome that obstacle and achieve your dreams, hopes, passions, most intimate desires??

Let me tell you a quick story, I once knew a girl who so desperately wanted to earn her college degree that she could taste it. However, right before her senior year of college, she was faced with serious financial difficulty. She had to pay over $2,000 to the school or she’d be kicked out of the university until she paid off that semester. Her mom couldn’t help, her father just gave thousands to her younger sibling in school as well, and just paid a few hundred on her semester bill that fall already- with two more children at home, he didn’t have it then.  This girl reached out to family and friends and prayed every night for God to show her a miracle. As it became closer to the deadline, she became more stressed and her faith began to waiver. She cried EVERY NIGHT. She wasn’t ready to give up the campus life that she built for herself, without her degree that she was so close to earning.

One night, this girl had the brilliant idea and the “balls” to e-mail the president of the university about her situation, to ask for  her  help and offer any freelance skills she could in art. That night, the president forwarded her email to the executive director of financial aid. Who was this?? Lol. She already knew people in high places in financial aid, but never anyone such as this! That night the executive director of financial aid e-mailed the girl back….and would you believe it…her bill was paid….with thousands leftover!

That girl was me. I say all that to say, don’t let go of your dreams, look them in the face and achieve them by any means necessary! Fear and doubt are no longer options!  Turn off the interference and turn on the TunnelVision, there are some dreams and goals to achieve right now! If you’ve stopped, pick up from where you left off and keep going!

Lillie Couture x Fall 2014 Collection

Image

On Friday, February 7th, Latasha Hall, the talented fashion designer behind the fabulous line “Lillie Couture Designs“, previewed her fall 2014 collection at W Studios in Philadelphia, PA.  The line debuted a glamorous collection of jumpsuits, dresses, with details of gold and ruffles which made each look stand out on the runway.  The theme of the evening was “Welcome to Wonderland”, and truly the collection was a wonderland of chic fashion for today’s modern woman.

Image

I love the detail in the beaded golden bodice and the flow of the floor length gown.

Image

This chic red ruffled top jumpsuit is absolutely fabulous!  I would love to pair this with a white blazer and wear it to the office during spring, then drop the blazer and head on over to happy hour in my heels!  The gold accents add the perfect touch to this look while keeping the collection cohesive.

Image

This ruffled black dress and gold beading is stunning!

Image

This golden gown is glamorous and full of amazing details!

Image

I love the simplicity of this white long sleeved gown paired with a very intricate and couture shoulder piece, this look captures your attention with elegance and grace.

The pieces in this collection are chic, elegant, and most certainly fabulous.  I love the entire collection, however my personal favorite is the red jumpsuit!  The gold accents throughout the line add the perfect touch to each piece.  The miniature hats and face masks bring the fantasy to the collection from the theme “Welcome to Wonderland.”  Truly, as you can see from the photo recap, this was a wonderland in fashion.

Image

As always…thanks for stopping by and leave a comment below!  Don’t you just love this collection by Lillie Couture Designs?  I do!

Philly Wine Mixer Recap x February 2014

I had the opportunity to attend the Philly Wine Mixer this past February and as always it was a great night filled with fashion, music, art appreciation, wine, shopping, and networking!  Nearly 500 guests filled the African American Museum of Art on Friday, February 7, 2014 to enjoy the festivities of the evening.  Guests enjoyed the sounds of Mel Alston Jr. and Sap Sounds music throughout the evening and DJ Aye Boogie kept the crowd going all night long as well.  Various vendors filled the museum with items available for guests to purchase while they enjoyed the various flavors and labels of wine provided throughout the entirety of the event.  Many of the young professionals of the evening were fashionably dressed for the event and ready to enjoy a good time.

Image

Photographer Ricky Codio kept the guests visually intrigued with his display of artistic photography.

In addition to the music and art, there were plenty of stunning and glamorous fashions from local designers in Philadelphia that graced the runway ramps.  These designers held the guests attention until the very end of the night.  There were plenty of bold and bright colors and intricate prints.  Guests were captivated and inspired by the runway designs of the night!

Image

First up was “Lifestyle Basics by AR”, the designer is in the white dress and started the segment off right with these beautiful designs for men and women.  That’s her daughter with that fly vest on, she would’ve stolen the show if she went down the runway, she is so adorable!

Image

Designer Ian Alexander (pictured in the middle with the floral shirt and black cap) was next up to hit the runway ramps in his fresh and vibrant designs that will have all the ladies and gentlemen ready for this spring season!  I love the use of bold colors, lines, and mixing of textures in his line.

Image

This next collection was fierce and full of couture!  Closet by Cristobal, designed by Christopher J. Brown is amazing and this haute couture clothing line brought the drama to all who were in attendance for the fashion segment.  The deep bold colors, prints, leather corset, fur, and hand made accessories were on point and dope.

Image

“Closet by Cristobal” on the runway!

Image

Mah Jing Wong( designer in the acid washed denim button up) ended the runway segment on a high note!  Mah Jing Wong clearly celebrates the curves of a woman’s body in his signature body con dresses, denim acid wash looks, and geometric shapes.  I absolutely love this collection and I know that women everywhere are raving about his flawless designs!

Image

Image

Image

I was able to capture some moments of Mah Jing Wong on the Philly Wine Mixer runway.

During the various music, art, and fashion segments, there was also an awards ceremony that took place.  Several well known artists from Philadelphia were recipients of the “Live In the Moment Award”, which were given by the creator of the Philly Wine Mixer and Live in the Moment Marketing, Tyrone Dixon.  The award is self explanatory, all of these creative recipients are living in the moment and living out their dreams to their fullest potential everyday.

ImagePhiladelphia artist Iris Bonner of “These Pink Lips“, accepting her Live in the Moment Award and gift from Duke & Winston.  I love her hair!

Image

Music Producer and Mananger John Barber receiving his Live in the Moment Award and giving his speech as Tyrone Dixon (Philly Wine Mixer and LITM creator) and other guests look on.

Image

Creator and owner of the brand “Kings Rule Together” Curran J. Swint, accepting his “Live In the Moment” award and giving his speech.

After all the festivities and fun of the evening, I was able to capture some candid shots with some of the guests.

Image

Christian Lewis of “Power Over Poverty” and “Abstract Thought” x Seun Olubodun of the brand Duke & Winston.

Image

At the end of the night I caught up with Seun of Duke & Winston again.

Image

Captured here with the talented and hard working Syreeta of the blog “Sincerely Syreeta.”  She hosted both the fashion segment and awards ceremony of the night.

 

Image

In the midst of running around, I was able to catch up with the Lead bar tender of the night, Blake- he kept everybody happy and served with the wine!

Image

Lastly, I was able to catch up with the man of the evening who made all of this possible- Tyrone Dixon a.k.a. T-Dot.  Lol I caught him at an intense moment with the closing of the event, but I’m happy he was able to stop for a quick shot.

As you can see from this recap…the Philly Wine Mixer is one of Philly’s hottest events and if you haven’t been to one yet, don’t fret, make plans to attend the next one on Friday, May 2, 2014, from 7-11 pm at the African American Museum of Art.  I’ll keep you updated as we get closer to the date.  In the meantime, check out this video recap of the Philly Wine Mixer on vimeo.

Duke & Winston x Valentine’s Day Specials

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner…or rather right at the end of the week!  Ladies, I know that we love to get our flowers, chocolates, and jewelry…but what about the men in our life?  Well, Duke & Winston is having a great sale going on right now up until Valentine’s Day- 25% off of all items that are red, white, and pink in store and online.  Duke & Winston has a lot of great items in store for the men in your life from ties to tees to baseball caps, they have it all!  They even have the cutest dog hoodies for your pets!  In all this cold and snow…it’s nice to have something for your pet to snuggle up in when they go outside.  I had the opportunity to stop by their store in the Northern Liberties section in Philadelphia, PA and I was able to take a few product shots to share with you.  They really have a great selection of t-shirts, sweaters, polos, long sleeve tees, baseball caps, beach tanks, dog hoodies, ties, and more in store!

Image

These silk ties will complete your man’s look for your special night on the town for Valentine’s Day!

Image

All the tees at D &W are definitely dope and a must have for any man’s wardrobe.

Image

Image

I love their baseball caps with the D & W shield and the embroidery of Duke on the lower picture is adorable!  I think I want one too lol!

Image

I love this long sleeved red and white tee and the quote on it “Sincerity- Use no hurtful deceit, think innocently and justly.”  Ah if we all lived by these words…as you can see with D &W…not only are you getting dope clothing, but also positive messages through the brand.

Image

Image

These dog hoodies are just adorable!  The hot pink and red hooded sweatshirts for the doggies are on sale as well!  They are too cute and they come in smaller and larger sizes, depending on the size of your furry friend.

This was just a snippet of what D &W has on sale for Valentine’s Day, for a full listing of items be sure to check out their site or stop by the store!

As always…thanks for stopping by…

Image

Who Do you Love More? x Get it Now

The album “Who Do You Love More?”, featuring Chill Moody x Beano x Hank McCoy – all three from Philly, dropped on February 4th on Itunes and on Google play.  I must admit…I was highly anticipating this album, especially since hearing “Last Night in Town” on Sound Cloud via Chill Moody’s page.  When I got home on Tuesday I immediately went online to cop the album and it’s what I expected and more!  Chill Moody did his thing, and Beano….ladies if y’all don’t know…he can sang!  Hank McCoy produced the dope beats for the songs on the album.

The collaboration amongst these three is pretty amazing, ever since I downloaded the album yesterday, it’s pretty much been on repeat and each track has it’s own flavor and catchy lyrics.  Like I said, after hearing “Last Night in Town” on sound cloud, they had me and I knew that I had to cop the album.  And there were a few other tracks that caught my attention, starting with “Right Under My Nose”, lol I did not expect what was coming at the end of that song…I had to go back and listen to it again. The ending really caught me off guard but it all makes sense, you have to hear the whole song to understand but the title says it all!  The hook on the song “What’s for Breakfast” is one my faves…like I said that dude named Beano can really sang!

I’m not going to review every single track, however the interlude “Money Coming Down” is dope…I wish it was a little longer, but it runs right into “BSGTBPT”, I have no idea what the title of this song means but the track is hot.  This album “Who Do you Love More?” is filled with songs dealing with various stages and types of relationships, break ups, and more. If you think that you’re missing out because you haven’t heard what’s on this album, then you are.  Visit itunes now to download the album or you can look it up on Google Play for Android phone users. It was #27 on the itunes hip hop chart the day that is dropped and I haven’t heard any complaints, just nice things from everyone who has the album. It’s under $10 and it’s definitely worth the buy…you won’t be disappointed.

One more thing…this Friday, these fellas, Chill Moody x Beano x Hank McCoy, will be performing this album live at the Hard Rock Cafe in Center City, Philadelphia.  This is a red carpet event, so if you’re going…dress for the affair.  They have a limited number of VIP tickets available along with general admission. If you love the album and want to see the live performance, get your tickets to go to the Hard Rock Cafe, for this Friday, February 7th doors open at 8:00 p.m.

…As always…thanks for stopping by and if you have feed back on this album…drop a line below.

Target x Peter Pilotto

Target stores does it again and pairs up with a high end designer to bring high fashion looks to their stores for the fraction of the price!  Peter Pilotto will be teaming up with Target for this spring collection that will be available beginning February 9, 2014, in stores and on line.  This line is full of funky prints and shapes from the London based fashion clothing line.  There will be plenty of swimwear, skirts, dresses, pants, funky clutches, and tops for the ladies to mix and match or be bold and pair up together.  Here are the looks that we can expect to hit stores on Sunday from Peter Pilotto for Target!

Look 1

Look 2

Look 3

Look 4

Look 5

Look 6

Look 7

Look 8

Look 9

Look 10

Look 11

Look 12

Look 13

Look 14

Look 15

Look 16

Look 17

Look 18

Look 19

Look 20

Look 21

Look 22

As you can see from the looks from the Peter Pilotto and Target collaboration, this line is full of dope prints, chic cuts, and modern lines!  I especially love the skirts, dresses, and cropped tops in this line.  It drops in stores and online on Sunday, February 9th.  If you remember what has happened in the past with quick sell outs of these Target collaborations, hurry up and get yours!  Most items are priced under $60 which is very reasonable and affordable!

….As always…thanks for stopping by and drop a line below…

(Designers Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos of “Peter Pilotto”)