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Must-See Play in New York City at BAM: What to Send Up When It Goes Down

What to Send Up When It Goes Down , an interactive play written by Aleshea Harris and directed by Whitney White taps into the gravity of the racially polarized times we're living in.  If Public Enemy's woke  anthem, "Fight the Power," were a theatrical work, this would be it.   Cast member Denise Manning./Photo by Donna Ward   Presented by BAM and Playwrights Horizons in association with The Movement Theatre Company through July 11 th at BAM Fisher (321 Ashland Place, $25) , I attended a performance of  What to Send Up When It Goes Down  and a week later I'm still reeling. The evening began with a pre-show lobby experience, an installation of photographs of men, women and children who mercilessly and senselessly lost their lives to anti-Black violence, including Trayvon Martin, Tamir Rice, Ahmaud Arbery, Eric Garner, Sandra Bland and Freddie Gray.  From the outside of the BAM building some of the portraits of Black lives lost are illuminated like saints in stained
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Guided Reflections to Kickstart Your Day and to Help You Sleep Peacefully at Night

As soon as  you wake up, it's easy for your mind to get cluttered with thoughts of the mountain of tasks in front of you -- work deadlines, bills that need to be paid, helping the kids with their homework, and household chores like grocery shopping, doing laundry, cooking and cleaning the house.   It can be overwhelming. To help quiet what is called "the monkey mind"in meditation (a term that refers to being unsettled, restless or confused), Everything She Wants was gifted The Good Morning Journal: 5-Minute Guided Reflections to Start Your Day with Inspiration, Purpose and a Plan  (Molly Burford, $14.99). Each day is a blank slate—a gift that we choose how to use. You can begin each day with clarity, purpose, and inspiration with  The Good Morning Journal . This beautifully packaged, easy-to-use guided journal is filled with quick, thoughtful prompts that help you recognize what you want to accomplish—and why—and create a simple plan to achieve your goals. You’ll also fi

6 Easy Ways to Install a Lace Front Wig

I'm not a wig girl.  But during the pandemic, I wasn't able to get my twist extensions redone as often as I like.  So I started to consider wearing a wig as a manageable protective style option and an easy way to change up my 'do and look polished during  Zoom calls .  As a wig novice, however, I  didn't  know where to start. A nd  the curly synthetic wig I purchased on Amazon was not  entirely t he natural looking vibe I was going for. So  Everything  She Wants enlisted Mayvenn wig expert Schae Graham to offer six easy steps for installing a lace front wig , which she says offers versatility -- from wavy to  straight and from long to short -- without damaging your hair.   Checking the Unit:  First, examine the wig to make sure that all combs and straps are in the correct place. Prepping Your Hair:  Creating the right foundation is important! Make sure that your hair is braided down, or in some form of braids or twists. This ensures that your wig will lay as flat as p

Melanoma Myths: How Skin Cancer Affects African Americans

It's a myth that African Americans and other people of color can't get skin cancer. The truth is that s kin cancers, including melanoma, affect Black and Hispanic people at a disproportionately deadly rate when compared to white people. So if you see something suspicious like  a new, unusual growth or a change in an existing mole anywhere on your body , schedule an appointment with your primary care physician or dermatologist right away. Here are some key facts: An average five-year melanoma survival rate is only 67 percent in Black people versus 92 percent in white people. Late-stage melanoma diagnoses are more common in Hispanic and Black patients than in non-Hispanic white patients. When skin cancer is found in Black and Hispanic people, they tend to be diagnosed at a later stage and, as a result, have a worse prognosis. MedStar Health shares the following information to debunk common misconceptions around skin cancer and melanoma:    MYTH: SKIN CANCER ONLY AFFECTS FAIR SK

Spring Cleaning: Clean Out Your Closet and Earn Extra Cash

Remember clothing?  As much as we love our athleisure, we can still recall what it was like to wake up and put on something other than hoodies, T-shirts, joggers and leggings. And now that coronavirus vaccines are available and we're resuming some sort of normalcy, we look forward to traveling again and meeting up with fellow vaccinated family and friends for brunch and outdoor fun (still wearing masks and socially distancing in public spaces). We also look forward to refreshing our wardrobe.  But if you want to make room for new garments, it's time to declutter and find a new home for the clothes, shoes and accessories you haven't worn in a season. Donating to a thrift store or charitable organization is always a good option.  For certain items in new or nearly new condition, however, you can also earn some cash by selling them at a consignment shop.   Here are several e-commerce and retail consignment shops we love: thredUp  makes cleaning out your closet easy.  Simply re

Change Your Diet to Reduce Stress: 3 Easy Dietary Tips for Women

April is Stress Awareness Month .  But strategies to reduce and manage stress are welcome any time of the year.   Studies show that women are more likely  than  men to report high levels of stress, and for African American women  chronic or daily stress is even more problematic.  While we tend to think of approaching stress management from an emotional wellbeing and physical health standpoint, we don't often associate making  dietary  changes with reducing stress and anxiety.   While scheduling an appointment with your  primary  care doctor and seeking help  from a therapist or spiritual advisor may still be necessary to help address the underlying reasons for why you're feeling stressed and the degree to which your  stress  affects your life, here are a few food for thought tips from  Constance Brown-Riggs, MSEd, RDN, CDCES, CDN, nutrition consultant and author Diabetes Guide to Enjoying Foods of the World .  Swap your  morning  coffee with a cup of warm tea .   “The key to

Heart Health for African American Women and What to Ask Your Doctor

It's American Heart Month, sis.  Risk factors like obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, smoking and physical inactivity put Black women at a higher risk for heart disease. These factors can be controlled by lifestyle and dietary changes. So it's time to literally take the necessary steps to protect your heart.  Other factors, like a family  history  of early heart disease can't be controlled. For women, heart disease becomes a risk factor at 55. That’s because, as the American Heart Association explains, after menopause, women are more likely to get heart disease. Partly, this is because their body no longer produces estrogen. Also, middle age is a time when women tend to develop other heart disease risk factors. That's  even  more incentive to take  care of ourselves, physically and emotionally.  Stress can also wreak havoc on our heart health. So make self-care a priority, whatever that looks like for you. Light some candles, put on your favorit