Hello Elegant Readers,
PEACE FOR FERGUSON!
The death of a young man. The protests and the riots!
The fire, the tear gas, the theft, the looting!
Stop! Stop! Stop!
The world is watching St. Louis, Missouri. Bubbling with Elegance and Grace is saddened even more by these events because they are happening in my hometown.
Yes, I am a Missourian and the world has all of its eyes on my state, specifically the small community of Ferguson, a suburban municipality in north St. Louis County.
My prayers go out to the family of Michael Brown. I intercede for peace and comfort flowing to them, In Jesus Name.
Should prayers go out to the Police Officer and his family? Some would say no; but he has a family and prayer goes out to the Ferguson police officers and all who are involved in the investigation.
All Police Officers are not bad cops and they need prayer.
I am saddened by the looting, the violence and the rioting. This is no way to honor Michael Brown and his family.
QuikTrip in Ferguson
Peace! Father God, I speak peace over Ferguson and St. Louis, Right Now! In the Name of Jesus.
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has declared a state of emergency for the second night in Ferguson. The looting and rioting had not stopped. When the name of the police officer was named and the video of the convenience store was released on Friday, the looting flared up again.
Ferguson is a family-oriented and friendly community. I have friends who live in Ferguson. I shop in Ferguson. My husband and I shop often at the Sam’s, the Ross’ and the Walmart that had been looted. We would buy gas at the QuikTrip that was destroyed.
The shooting of Michael Brown that occurred last Sunday is on the eastern edge of Ferguson. With a population of 21,000 people, Ferguson is quite large and spread out. The community is known for its railroad history and its large Victorian style homes and tree-lined streets.
I have heard comments like, I didn’t know Ferguson was so black. Answer: Ferguson is 33 percent white, so Ferguson is not all black.
Who cares? Everyone does.
Listen! a mother and father have lost their son.
People who are not even a part of the Ferguson community our destroying businesses in the community. Destroying a property will not bring Michael Brown back.
Christian rapper, Lacrae made a statement on his Facebook page and I totally agree.
Lacrae’s Facebook page
We have to be mentors for our youth. Yes, looting and theft is bad, but now what?
St. Louis, Missouri has great organizations that mentor youth to want to do more and be more.
Herbert Hoover Boys’ and Girls’ Club
“The mission of the Boys of Greater St. Louis (BGCSTL) is to inspire and enable youth ages 6 to 18 to realize their full potential as productive , responsible and caring citizens.”
Mathew Dickey Boys’ and Girls’ Club
“Today, the Club serves more than 40,000 young men and women, ages 5-18, throughout the St. Louis-metropolitan area. The Club also serves as a meeting center for various community, social and business organizations and as an outreach resource center for troubled youth.”
Big Brothers and Big Sisters
“…But, there are also an estimated 100,000 children in Eastern Missouri who are in serious need of a Big Brother or Big Sister. Who are these children? They are children who face multiple challenges. Many live in poverty, come from single parent households, have a parent behind bars and struggle with their academic performance. These children need extra support and encouragement. They need you, me… us!”
If you are not able to volunteer for any of these organizations, being a mentor can start with your family, your nieces and nephews, Godchildren, at your church, your children’s school, your neighborhood, there are endless ways to make a lasting positive impact on a child.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness.
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Turn away from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
2nd Corinthians 10:1-5, Ephesians 6:10-13
“Believers remember indeed we war not after the flesh, but after the SPIRIT, so we must stay in the SPIRIT, to FIGHT this war.” Corey Williams
We have to look in the mirror; change starts with us.
Come on, you know where the back machines are in your gym right? Well if you don’t, it’s the group of machines that rarely have anyone on them. That’s because people like to work muscle groups that get attention, like biceps and abs. However, those with strong backs will be the first to tell you it is one of the most important muscle groups on your body, not only for posture, but for any type of athletic movements.
Back Exercises You Can Do at Home
Facts about your back muscles:
– Your back muscles are the second strongest muscle group in your body; only your legs have more power.
– A wide back creates the illusion of having a much smaller waist than you actually do. Therefore you look a lot trimmer than you really are.
– Back training burns more calories than most exercises because they are the second biggest muscle group in the body
– For athletic movements, a strong back will enable you to throw further, climb and pull higher, or punch harder.
– The lower back is used in nearly every exercise that you do for your entire body.
So, how do you exercise your back if you don’t have access to gym equipment? Easy, just follow the below workout I designed for you. Feel free to add or take away reps if the exercises are too easy or difficult for you.
Supermans – 1 set – 8 reps
Lay face down with your arms out straight in front of you. Raise your arms and legs 6 inches off the ground. Hold for 3 seconds and return to the starting position.
I Pose Pump – 1 set – 18 reps
Lay face down with your arms extended by your side. Raise your arms and legs 6 inches off the ground. Pump your arms up and down.
T Pose Pump – 1 set – 25 reps
Lay face down with your arms extended outward. Raise your arms and legs 6 inches off the ground. Pump your arms up and down.
Bird dog – 1 set – 8 reps
On your palms and knees with your eyes facing the ground, raise one arm and the alternate leg in line with your back. Hold for 3 seconds. Every two times you raise your leg is one rep.
Bridge– 1 set – 8 reps
Lay on your back with your knees bent and feet hip-width apart. Put your arms at your side and lift your hips. Hold for 3 seconds and return to starting position.
There you have it, 5 back exercises you can do anywhere and anytime without any equipment. Of course, if you have a gym membership you could add many more back exercises to this workout, such as lat pull downs and pull ups. Always be sure to stretch your back after a workout to reduce soreness and stiffness.
This article was authored by Michael Volkin, inventor of Strength Stack 52 bodyweight exercise cards and the all new Weight Loss Stack 52, the most fun and unique way to lose weight.
Hi Elegant Readers,
Can you believe that it is August already? My friends’ and colleagues’ kids are starting school soon while others will be going back in a week. Well, there is still time to get that vacation getaway before summer gets away from you. I feel the humidity outside and the heat.
If you had a fantasy getaway, where would you go?
How about Las Vegas — the city that never sleeps. I envision styles for you if you ever plan to go.
Fantasy vacation where you and the hubby are flying into Las Vegas for a quick, three-day weekend. You can stay at the Aria at Citycenter. Aria is a destination in itself, featuring over 4,000 rooms, a multitude of restaurants for every taste bud, a spa and salon, and awesome entertainment options including Cirque du Soleil.
aria at citycenter
When you get up in the morning, you want to look cute, but effortless. I went for the layering effect with the jacket, jeans and blouse. Even though Las Vegas is warm, it may be cool in the cafes when you are getting some breakfast before you start your day. The jacket can always be taken off as the temperature rises. I went for the gold with the accessories and added a pop of color with turquoise necklace.
Viva Las Vegas
After breakfast at the Cafe, it’s time to check out the boutiques and shops.
Crystals mall is right next to the hotel. You would have to take a day just to browse all the shops that include Tiffany’s,Versace, Dolce and Gabbana, Tom Ford, and Jimmy Choo to name a few. The water features along with the trees and plants are a must see.
I included a second style sheet of a great day look that will keep you looking fabulous. These Guiseppe Zanotto wedge sneakers will be stylish and comfortable walking all day long.
Pile on the bracelets, hoop earrings and add a pop of color in the necklace and handbag.
Style Sheet Two: Daydreamer
Night out with the hubby in Las Vegas
After coming back to the hotel from a day of walking the Vegas strip and shopping; it is time to relax a little and get ready for dinner and a show.
I would recommend dinner at Lemongrass for some stir fry garlic vegetable with Thai iced tea. Sounds delicious!
Lemongrass Restaurant at Aria
The outfit below is perfect for seeing the Jersey Boys show. I saw the group with the hubby on a Caribbean cruise and the show is fabulous.
“The music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons is ubiquitous. Whether or not you realize it, you’ve heard their songs on the radio, in TV commercials, movies or covered by a contemporary artist. Their repertoire of hits like, “Sherry,” “Walk Like a Man” and “Big Girls Don’t Cry” is ingrained in American pop culture. The story behind those songs and the group is just as endearing.” (Vegas.com)
The look: A 50s style with this sleeveless a-line cherry print dress because we are going to see the Jersey boys.
Las Vegas Dinner Nights
The hair would be in an up-do chignon and add a couple of sprays of the fruity, floral fragrance called Fabulous perfume by Isaac Mizrahi.
The three day weekend is styled right and oh so gorgeous.