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Maris’ 2017 Year in Review

I get so excited when the end of the year is coming close just so i can reflect like this. I won’t say 2017 flew by, that’s typical. But I do feel like it started nice and steady, summer came, then it was September and then boom, the year was over.

2017 was rather, consistent for me. nothing major to report. I’ve grown my brands so much within the last year though and i’m super proud of myself for doing so. I have a milestone year coming so I cannot wait to see what 2018 has in store for me. Time to go through month by month.

JANUARY

I opened the new year with my best friend [my sister] and bestie cousin in New York. I’ve worn red for the second year in a row. I’m starting to believe, the way you start your new year could set the tone for the year so, I was having a blast.

 

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My sister and I visited the African American Museum in January also. If you’re familiar with American history, you know that having a museum dedicated just to African American History is a big deal.

I also got to visit a new place, Cartagena, Colombia and celebrate my college best friend’s 30th birthday.  We had so much fun in Colombia and the food was so good. I’d go back just for the food lol. You can read more about my time spent in Colombia here. 

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FEBRUARY

Life continued in February. SocaBuzz, my soca app was conceptualized by now and had gotten approved by Apple on February 14th. What a great Valentine’s day gift. We then launched the app on February 16th.

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But we all know February for me MEANS CARNIVAL! Trinidad Carnival was as amazing as to be expected. I won’t go into too much details here but if you want a review, read about my Tribe Carnival Experience here. [and you can see more pictures]

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MARCH

I don’t remember much about March but I practiced a lot of self care in March. Spa dates with mysel and planning. A note I wrote to myself then: “Avoid artificial harmony”. I prepared a lot at home, I was having my housewarming in April, so home decor was essential in March. The last week of March, I submitted my Travel Story to JetSetTV (suggestion of a college friend) and hoped for the best.

 

APRIL

April was a great month for me – It was the month of the interviews. April 5th I  met with Mandi from a Caribbean Lifestyle Magazine to talk about SocaBuzz. I held a SocaBuzz Launch event on April 7th for my app and all my friends came out and supported me. You could feel the love in the room and it was cold AF that day. While AT the launch party, I got an email saying I was approved for my media credentials for Jamaica Carnival, this highlighted my month to be honest. To have launched an app and on the same day [of the launch] get approval for media to someone’s carnival even if they don’t know your brand was super exciting.

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I was also on radio that day as well, to talk about my travels to several carnivals and my website www.globalcarnivalist.com

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My housewarming was on April 15th. We fed the masses, they had fun, got drunk and celebrated adulthood. I also went to Jamaica Carnival in April. A new band Xaymaca launched and I had the opportunity to play was with them. So exciting. You can read more details about my time here. April 28th — I had gotten approved to do my segment on air. It was so exciting.

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MAY

May marks summer for me, Memorial Weekend (party time), working and spreading awareness about Electric Carnival, and I got to do a photoshoot.

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JUNE

In 2016, I wanted a goal of mine to be, attending 8 different types of events that I would not normally attend. Veuve Clicquot was one of those events.

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Then I went to Bermuda for the first time – What a gorgeous country. I could not get enough of these beaches.

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It was also party time in DC with Hookie Weekend. I love summer so much. DC too is trying to revive their Caribbean and carnival scene. Read about Hookie Weekend here. 

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JULY

My birthday is the only thing that matters to me in July. Here are the pictures.

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WBB Bookclub celebrated 5 years in July. I truly cannot believe it’s been 5 years already. wow

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AUGUST

I went to Barbados for Crop Over! This was a very interesting trip, lol four of my cousins/friends got pink eye. Read more about our trip here 

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I was part of another interview on the Oh Hell No Podcast. Definitely fun

SEPTEMBER

I spent September with my friends.

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OCTOBER

October is a marker of the changing seasons. Miami Carnival takes place in October, and we know I’m not trying to miss carnival. One of my favorite costumes for 2017. More videos and pictures here

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I spent Halloween with my sister

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Another event outside of my norm

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November and December are holiday months. I spent this time reflecting and plotting on 2018. I’m very pleased with my 2017, despite us having a carrot as a president.

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Until next time

xoxo

Ris

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ready for the Holidays – Fending off weight during the holiday season

Happy Monday!!

Are you looking forward to the holidays? I am, especially Christmas. Christmas is my second favorite time of year. I already mentioned carnival season was my first 🙂 I can’t wait to put my Christmas tree up. I guess I have to wait until Thanksgiving is over to do so, and start looking for gifts for my loved ones. I hope I don’t overspend this year trying to get gifts for everyone.

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Mascots International 2014 Review

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By now you all should know that I am a carnival addict (yes i’m finally admitting it). I also thought it would be a good idea to start sharing more of my opinion about all these carnivals that I do attend. This year, my friend and I played mas with Mascots International. I saw their gorgeous costumes last year and decided that if I were to attend Miami Carnival the next year, I would play with Mascots International. (more…)

Five Things that make a Feminine Woman

This post is purely my opinion only but as I’ve been observing women more and more, there are certain things that make us more feminine, prissy and even daintier than others. Times have changed a lot so of course I don’t believe that women are limited to only wearing skirts and dresses, but skirts and dresses (showing our beautiful legs) is what makes people immediately know that you’re a woman from a distance. Unless of course you’re a cross dresser.

So here is my list of five things I believe make a woman feminine.

1. Well manicured finger nails. (Absolutely no chipped polish – she should be willing to paint her nails almost daily to avoid this)

2. Sleeping in nighties/lingerie (Silk or lace, definitely)

3. Matching bra and panty sets

4. Daily face washing routine (Because we wear makeup and lipstick duh!)

5. Having a cosmetic bag in your purse (Chapstick, a mirror, handwipes are things needed 24/7)

So that’s my extremely shallow list of feminine things, maybe because I do them.. 🙂  I may add more as I think of them. Happy Tuesday!

xoxo

maris

Week #2

Weekly is what I said right, about blogging. So I have something to report. I’ve decided to enlist myself into an “unplugging challenge”. I’ve given up my smartphone for 3 days. Woe is me!! How will I know the weather? Listen to music, tweet, read yelp reviews, check my email, text, occupy myself on pinterest while bored? So many things my phone provides, it’s almost like a mini best friend. No no, IT IS my bestfriend. I will say though, that i am excited. Excited to see what i will participate in, the conversations i’ll have by being more present, the lengths in which i’ll go to communicate with people and/or find out information. For example, turning on the TV to actually find out the weather. Are there rules to this shit? How many times an hour can i check my email? After escaping tomorrow, i think i’ll go to yoga, possibly read more.. shit, maybe i might turn this into 7 days (clearly getting ahead of myself) but we shall see.. 

 

xoxo 

maris

Monthly Goal Lists

… I’m clearly a lying sack of $%^@ .. I’ve made countless promises to myself about blogging regularly, including adding it to my new year’s resolution. So for the month of May, i want to blog weekly. Four blogs, that shouldn’t be much right? Today is Cinco De Mayo, so i’m on my way to have some fun. The past month has been very hectic for me, new job responsibilities, changes in my personal life, while managing a social life. I’m looking forward to summer and all the fun activities that are ahead, especially all the beach/pool/i get to be half naked days. So again, let’s try to see if Maris can return and do what she continues to promise. 

 

xoxo 

Maris 

ISLANDpeople Mas Review 2014

Island People Mas Review

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This was my very first year playing with IP and while having done all my research, I was told they had the most vibes. Below is my review. 

REGISTRATION

I was so excited when IP launched that I was one of the very first to register. However, my section’s designer, Sonia Mack was responsible for handling registration and payment which I must say is a pain in the rear as it does not reflect the customer service I may have received from IP directly. Registration itself was extremely easy, there were times where the website was down, and Sonia Mack’s website was unavailable for a very long time so there was a lot of confusion as to what prices were. Please work on your website build out next year.

COMMUNICATION

The communication from IP was extremely LACK LUSTER! We waited too long to be told when registration would be open, and when the website would be fixed. There was absolutely no reveal of Monday wear.  They waited literally, two days prior to tell us when distribution dates were, which for people traveling into Trinidad is a headache! IP nor Sonia Mack was clear as to where we had to pick up our costume from, which created confusion also. Please do better , consistency is key. I do not think designers should be able to handle collection on IP’s behalf. Lastly, I truly believe people pay too much money for their costumes and the experience to be treated like we’re begging to play in your band.

COLLECTION

Our collection for Sonia’s section was at IP’s mascamp and not at the plaza which was a bit of a life saver. We picked up on our date given and there was only one person ahead of us. However, I was extremely disappointed to find that they had no receipt of what I had already paid for and depended on us to tell them what our balance was, and what additions we made.  I personally was missing my necklace but improvised and did not let that spoil my experience. Two women in my crew did not get their additions (headpiece, boyshorts) at all, which is disheartening.

CARNIVAL MONDAY

Carnival Monday we met the band late, but had no problem catching up to them as we had friends there who were able to tell us where the truck was. The band was pure vibes, however, there were too many non-masqueraders in the band. Considering one of the extraction members checked ME to see if I belonged, I expected better. It was so cramped at one point I could barely whine to the side. Truck #1 played the same 12 songs over and over. ANNOYING! Mostly Machel songs, which yeah yeah, I get his allegiance to the organization but my god, can we have a well-rounded mix of songs? The truck also drove too quickly. At one point, three trucks passed me while I was chipping, which I had to run to catch up to.  Not until the end of the day, did I end up near the last truck, where there was way more space, and a variety of music did I truly enjoy myself. And that was toward the end of the evening.

The food was dry, I chose the vege option and could barely finish all my food. The bartenders surely kept the drinks flowing. Whether I asked for water, coke by itself or my drink of choice there was no issue. They did however, run out of cups and my IP bag did not include an IP cup. So imagine my surprise when I had to beg a local KFC for some of their cups. Again, people pay way too much money to participate for this to be happening.

CARNIVAL TUESDAY

First of all, WHERE WAS THE COOLING TRUCK WE WERE PROMISED? In 90 degree weather, where people have been outside since 6/7AM, this was truly ridiculous. People were supposed to meet the band at 6AM at a certain location. 6:15AM the band moved to some random street.

I must say I loved the look of my costume and was comfortable in it but it was not the most practical. My tights were thoroughly ripped because of the belt, before we even met the judging section. One of my cousins eventually just took off the belt and ripped her tights off. Even I, took my belt off before I crossed the stage. There was also a jewel on the bra that stabbed me in the chest for most of the day, that most of us had bruising. I get that designers want to have the most beautiful costume but they should also be functional. The wait to cross the stage was unbearable in that heat, but I don’t think that is a reflection of IP.

We got to the rest stop ahead of the band which was a plus so there was no line for food, bathrooms or to find seating. I took the best nap in the bleachers. I did not find out until late about the ice cream stand and massage section, but I did enjoy both amenities once I found them. There should be better communication/signage about where amenities are. Also, there was no announcement of when the trucks left, so we had to run through Tribe to find IP.

Overall, I had an amazing time despite the things I listed above. I learned not to let things beyond my control ruin the actual experience for me. The vibes was on point, friendly masqueraders, and staff. The end of the night, (though left on the highway) was the most amazing once the sun went down and a truck hosed us down with water. I am not sure at this point if I will play with IP again, they seriously have to work on their communication and customer service.

Until next year,

Maris