Sending beautiful Sankofa wishes to those celebrating Black History Month in the United Kingdom this month!! Peace and blessings always.

Celebrating Black History in the United Kingdom

Sankofa is the Adinkra symbol that reminds us to Return and Get what has been left behind.

Celebrate Duafe Dallas TX  on Sept !

naturally Isis Presents 2nd annual Natural Hair Parade

Duafe is the Adinkra Symbol for beauty and this morning I  was sooooo honored to be able to speak with a true pioneer and ambassador for African Beauty across the Diaspora–

 

the amazing Naturally Isis.  

For the second year Isis Brantley of  Naturally Isis brings us the Natural Hair Parade and Festival  in Dallas/Fort Worth Texas.    

 This parade and festival is the first of it kind celebrating African Beauty. Naturally Isis is always teaching and  sharing concepts of empowerment thru self love being a huge focus of  this parade and festival.  

If you are  anywhere close to Dallas Metro area I encourage you to head over and join the fun

 ….. on Saturday, September 1st  to be a part of this amazing event.

Listen in below to my chat with this amazing lady and learn more about Naturally Isis, her  inspiration  to host this special event – truly a beautiful  labor of love and about all the special activities planned for September 1st.

Here is a link to the chat we enjoyed

 I encourage you to consider offering donations to this amazing event to assist with the education and empowerment of women through DUAFE

Please contact the Outreach Coordinator at (404) 944-6439

or visit Naturally Isis Natural Hair Online 

 

Passing down the Traditions - So Important

Naturally Isis teaching about the tradition of Duafe

I came across this cute Adinkra Magnet  craft over at the blog  Sacred Arts.  I love that it is simple but allows the crafter to create a colorful  Adinkra magnet as beautiful dimensional expressions.   Cori Lynn  offers a great tutorial with pictures on how to create these magnets using inexpensive coasters glue and a magnetic sheet.   The most time-consuming part of this project is allowing the glue to dry.  I have put this one on our list of crafts to include when we study West Africa!!  I think you could take this craft and use it to create many different unique magnets…Chineese letters, Yoruba numbers,  Swahili words and sooooo much more.  So head over to Sacred Arts and get started !  Please share the pics of all your beautiful creations and I promise to update here as we create our magnets too!!

Adinkra symbol Magnets

Adinkra Magnets from Sacred Arts

United from A to Z

April 26, 2012

As this A to Z challenge rolls on and heads towards its close I am inspired to remark on the sense of unity  I have discovered.   Despite having a very difficult time keeping pace this past week due to illness…..I have continued to feel a part of this A to Z train!   Seeing all the #atozchallenge tweets and reading posts has been what made me try so hard to find a way to push through!  And now that I am feelin’ better  I am so glad and thankful for all the A to Z pull!! 

Unity togetherness

Adinkra symbol Bese Saka represents Unity, power and togetherness

 So for the letter U – I stand United with my fellow a to z bloggers.  Tha adinkra symbol BESE SAKA represents unity, power and togetherness.   I think it is the symbol that most accurately represents this challenge.  The symbol visually represents cola nuts which is an agricultural product with an important role in Ghana and has influence in bringing people together.  That is how I see the A to Z challenge an important influencer to bring folks together – So powerful!!

Heres to a fantastic finish!

One of the reasons I love Adinkra symbols and have committed to “studying” them is their long history.  It fascinates me that these symbols have been passed down for so many generations in Ghana. They are some what unique because they are a printed form of communication and historically many African traditions are oral.   This is not to say that there are not other traditional written or printed expression on the African continent because there are others for sure!!  I plan to one day explore those too!   

Available at Africancraft.com
Adinkra Stamps

The methods used to print the Adinkra symbols have been passed down too.   Traditionally the symbols are carved into calabash.  The symbol is then printed on fabric using beautiful dyes.   The cloth that is created is a beautiful expression from the printer.   We now have many ways to “create” the Adinkra symbols but it is really important to remember the traditional ways and not lose this knowledge.   One day soon I would like to try my hand at printing on some cloth –  I will be sure to share the fun here.   

Here is a video featuring the Adinkra printing tools with explanation of some of the symbols.  Unfortunately I could not embed the video but click the link and Enjoy!

L is for Lumumba

April 15, 2012

 

Adinkra symbol Sankofa

Adinkra symbol Sankofa - Return & Get what you left behind

As I complete week two  for the AtoZ  Challenge I would like to talk about the great African leader Patrice Lumumba. He was the first elected Prime Minister of the Republic of the Congo (Democratic Republic of Congo today) after working to secure independence for his country from Belgium.  Lumumba was only in office for 12 weeks before his government was overturned, he was imprisoned and executed.   The series of tumultuous events that occurred in 1960 are referred to as the Congo Crisis.  

For such a short reign as leader of a country Mr Lumumba has left a tremendous legacy.  He was known for the determination that he led with to help  his countrymen gain independence. Also his  strong belief in Pan-Africanism  did not make him an African leader supported by the American or Belgium governments of the time.  There are some questions as to whether the US played a part in the execution and further disposal of his body.

We have to wonder whether The Democratic Republic of the Congo would be a much stronger Patrice Lumumbagovernment and world player if Patrice Lumumba had been allowed to continue his unifying  work after the  fragile period during which  this country gained its independence.  Having such a strong leader dedicated to positively connecting with other independent African countries clearly seems like it would have benefited the entire continent. 

These events lead me to ponder how wise it is for any country to interfere with the government and leadership of another.  Our current global community has several instances where this is occurring.  How will this affect the future of these nations positively or negatively??   I think we all can take a lesson from history!!

Shortly before his assassination, Lumumba penned the following words in a farewell letter: ‘

The only thing we wanted for our country was the right to a decent existence, to dignity without hypocrisy, to independence without restrictions. . . .  The day will come when history will have its say.’ — Patrice Lumumba 

Inspired and I Love It!!

April 10, 2012

Symbol of Unity

Adinkra Symbol Nkonsonkonson reminds us to contribute to the community and therein lies great strength!!

Today’s post is a Love Note to all the visitors, posters, bloggers and Tweeters that have made the last week amazing!!  I entered this A to Z Challenge as a fun “new” activity.  I figured I would have a few new visitors to my blog, check out a couple of fellow A to Z Challenge Blogs and learn a wee bit more about blogging—-Boy was I WRONG!!  I don’t think I can accurately explain to you what an amazing 8 days it has been.  Truly a challenge to keep up with posting and all the duties of a Mom and wife  but also an incredibly inspiring experience.   The blogs I have visited have given me so many new perspectives on topics for blogging, themes and more.  Gaining a view into another bloggers world perspective has truly put me in awe…..and for this I say a BIG  THANK YOU.   I cannot tell you the number of times I have mention to my hubby “I am just loving this A to Z Challenge”  I even tried to get him to join in –maybe I will have better luck next year!

So here is to the next 18 post – Keep it coming folks and I promise to keep reading and doing my best to add a little inspiration for you too!    

Hope you enjoy this video of Stevie Wonders  

“I Just Called To Say I Love You”

 

As we come to the next stop in the A to Z Blogging Challenge I have decided to look at Handmade books for the letter H.

Artist Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord has an awesome site MakingBooks.com where she offers lots of great information about a variety of ways to work with children and teach them how to make their own books.   Designing and creating a book can be a powerful experience for a child.  It shows them that they can not only be readers but also writers of books!  And we all know there can NOT be too many good writers in the world!!  As mom to a growing little writer I am constantly looking for new ways to encourage my daughters  writing activities.   We have not tried any of  Susan’s projects but it is definitely on my list of  weekend “to-do’s”. 

Of course when I spied the Adinkra symbol book I was very excited!  Here is a picture of the completed project and I have linked it to instructions for the project on one of Susan’s blogs!

Adinkra Accordion book

Adinkra Accordion Book from MakingBooks.com

Be sure to stop by MakingBooks.com for instructions on how to make this great book and other great book projects.

Have you created any handmade books with children?  I would love to hear about the stories they’ve created!

Blogging A to Z Challenge

Adinkra Cakes

April 3, 2012

C is for Cake and that good enough for me!  With wedding season approaching I  decided to share some beautiful cakes that  I have come across on the web!  What is so wonderful about including Adinkra symbols on your wedding cake is that the symbols each have meaning so you can choose the several that are true expressions of the couple!

Some of the common symbols used for weddings include:

Adinkra symbol of faith and trust in GodNYAME NTI which represents by Gods Grace – it is a symbol of trust and faith in God

 

 

 

adinkra symbol of love faithfulness and harmonyOSRAM NE NSOROMMAThe moon and the star which  is a symbol of love, faithfulness and harmony.

Adinkra symbol for tolernce and patienceAKOMA – the heart – symbol of patience and tolerence

Adinkra Cake Jollye

adinkra symbols wedding cake stephaniethebaker.com

And here are two lovely Birthday Cakes highlighting Adinkra symbols!

This is why I love the symbols so much – each has great significance and speaks to us beautifully and boldly!

Includes Gye Nyame and Osram Ne Nsoromma

Adinkra Birthday Cake by Pona

Gye Nyame Adinkra symbol reprents omnipitence of God

Gye Nyame cake by Elsi Aikens

Sankofa Art

March 7, 2012

The Adinkra symbol Sankofa is a powerful statement to many across the African Diaspora.  For many of us it represents  our strong desire to reach back…way back to our ancestral home and learn about the culture our forefathers and mothers had to leave behind.  We have much of that culture within us and we don’t even know it!

As a salute to this powerful symbol that stands as  a strong reminder of our journey to African knowledge I would like to share this photo of the artwork by Goddess Angelika   I am so happy to see my enlightened Brothers and Sisters sharing the knowledge of the beautiful Adinkra symbols. This trend of sharing is the key for us all to join the powerful Sankofa journey.

Sankofa by Goddess Angelika

Adinkra symbol Sankofa

For more African cultural expressions thru poetry and art visit Goddess Angelika Tumblr