Love Language #101

LL101

What say you?

Recently I had the eavesdropping pleasure of overhearing an impromptu all male convo. The subject centered on women of course, (insert grin) and how these handsome gentlemen felt a certain type of way related to dating. Now listen my lovely readership, they were straight out complaining, and not holding back. I found their convo extremely interesting, specifically because of the age demographic. Every well dressed man in this group was above the age of forty, or maybe even forty plus! Check out the one comment that caused my eyes to roll sideways, just a tiny bit.

“A real woman will cook you a home cooked meal, without even asking her” 

Well, because I was not a part of this conversation, I chose to keep my opinions to myself. While I understand the meaning of the comment, I couldn’t help thinking, why would you expect a single woman to play wifey, straight out of the gate?

Feed her TACOS and tell her she’s PRETTY. Express genuine interest, put forth a little effort before expecting her to cook a meal. The simple things carry a lot of weight out here in the dating game, women are looking for men who are authentic in their love language. And Yaaassss, many of us are looking forward to cooking a home cooked meal, but speaking hypothetically, are you showing her that you are deserving of her culinary efforts.

~ Don’t shoot the messenger~ 

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Kela Walker/Facebook

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Tim Reid’s Cultural Fashion Showcase

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An Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony, and the aroma of culture, filled the venue as I walked in the door. I had finally arrived, after a one hour plus drive to the all interesting city of Richmond, Virginia.  I came for the fashion extravaganza presented by actor, producer, and first time designer Mr. Tim Reid, along with his lovely wife Mrs. Daphne Reid, who slayed the runway with her first design collection.

Perfection may be an understatement when describing Tim Reid’s Cultural Fashion Showcase. The RVA event space was lit on April 27th with local and international lovers of fashion. Well-dressed attendee’s mingled about, smiling at one another, greeting folks who’ve attended in the previous years, from my observation the event was some type of reunion amongst fashion connoisseur’s. People watcher number one, that would be Moi, was here for all of it…..insert handclap emoji three times!

The breathe taking beautiful co-producer and event host Salome was mesmerizing, wearing her beautifully unique designs as she graced the stage hosting simultaneously with Tim and Daphne Reid.

“Fashion models enhance the designers creative masterpieces”

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Step to the side while I shout out the sharp dressed male runway models, wearing designer Malcom Staples, of Malcom’s Custom Made to Fit. The women in the audience began to “oooh and ahhh”, snap fingers, while displaying the biggest smiles as the older more distinguished models hit the runway. Malcolm’s classy fitted suits gave favor to a trendy vintage look, full of pops of color, and fun patterns. I loved the sexy-sexy female tuxedo suit, well put together featuring a cute top-hat, perfect for a swanky dinner party. I haven’t worn a women’s suit in a while, however, if one can be created for a special holiday party, with a little sparkle, I’m all in for it.

Actress, producer and first time designer Daphne Reid, hit the runway with flowing color pops, floppy hats accentuated the swing jacket style, giving you the NYC street look of an older woman, out and about her business of the day. Comfy, eye-catching designs to turn heads, as you walk on by….

I’m excited to attend Tim Reid’s fashion show again, unfortunately I had a family emergency in the middle of the show, causing me to leave early. I missed a lot of amazing designers, international and local. All the fashion chatter for weeks after the event came across super positive, highlighting the charity who benefited from the proceeds, congratulations to the recipient Legacy Media Institute.

Bravo to all on a job well done…

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Dakota Somerville

 

 

‘Shades of Life Networking Soiree’

 

Dr. Dionne Gibbs, Nurse, CNE, Nurse Administrator, Owner and Operator of Shades of Life Coaching and Consulting Service.

You know you’re a powerhouse, when your positive energy enters the room long before you actually make an appearance. The quiet chatter amongst the excited attendees, gave notice that we were about to gain a wealth of life-long knowledge. Entrepreneur’s, family, and old friends came together to celebrate the branding launch of “Shades of Life”, the new coaching and consulting business, spearheaded by Dr. Gibbs. On Friday, June 28th, the beautiful Slover Library in Norfolk, Virginia, was once again the perfect venue, including its magnificent roof-top area overlooking the city.

“Walk upright in your purpose, and support other women”

Dr. Gibbs spoke passionately to her audience on the subject of holding yourself accountable when you have fallen into that space you need help coming out of, first and foremost you must recognize where you are in achieving your goals. If you need to wiggle, then wiggle your way back to that positive space. Networking was at its peak level during the event, others began to acknowledge the resources sitting next to them.

I am absolutely certain every person in the room felt empowered, as well as uplifted and consciously motivated. Dr. Gibbs is on a solid mission to serve, which includes a pursuit and purpose of educating, elevating, and empowering women of all ages to be the best version of themselves while finding their true purpose within the current journey in life.

She wore a gorgeous red jumpsuit, and we all know red is a power color representing energy and determination. Dr. Gibbs was a lovely hostess, as she moved about with her arms extended, greeting her guest with warm hugs and words of encouragement. O’ wow, let me tell you how the aroma of delicious food easily flowed out to the sexy roof-top patio eating area, highlighted by a lovely warm summer’s night.

I personally made a great network connection with a fierce spoken word artist by the name of Neisha Himes, of the Grow Foundation. My love of poetry attracts the deepest souls, we always link, like kindred spirits. I recognized her captivating voice from a previous event I had just recently blogged. As she stood front and center to give her poetic rendition of “Dear Broken Woman”, I knew she was the one to perform a special piece from my poetry repertoire. And that my readership is the essence of a networking event.

“How can I teach my daughter the definition of a strong woman, when my own weakness defines me in a dictionary I don’t want to read anymore”

Poem: Dear Broken Woman      Artist: Neisha Himes

To recap the “Shades of Life Soiree” in one blog is nearly impossible. I believe the mission statement was well accomplished, bringing like-minded individuals into one room for the sole purpose of networking. Dr. Gibbs has been coaching and consulting in her daily work life for quite some time, now that she has branched out specifically with that purpose in mind, it’s a definite win for the Hampton Roads Community. I’ve spent some time researching her platform of empowerment, many of you will be amazed at how kind, yet very direct her statements come across, and how easy her goal setting principals will apply to your life. Let me be the first to congratulate Dr. Gibbs on a very successful brand launch.

Food for thought:

If you are looking for someone to hold you accountable through the steps of your success journey, contact Dr. Dionne Gibbs.

http://www.shadesoflifecoaching.com

Facebook: Dionne Gibbs

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Dakota Vibe/Dionne Gibbs

You Do Not Have Permission To Quit!

Mikia Shae Troche – Founder and CEO

What does the word “ENDURE” mean to you? Many of us would define the word as a form of suffering, or going through something to achieve a specific end goal. If you’re a living breathing human being, you are at some point in your life enduring through a storm. For some, it may be a little less difficult than others, which would have a person in the midst of enduring without even realizing it.

On Saturday, June 1, 2019 my spiritual soul was set ablaze from the moment I set foot into the Semi-Annual Enduring Conference, held at the Holiday Inn, in the lovely city of Virginia Beach. Author, visionary, motivational speaker, and business mentor Mikia Shae Troche greeted her conference attendees looking simply angelic in an all-white attire. You could feel the peacefulness in the room, filled with eye-catching  tones of yellow and blue, as encouraging sounds of gospel music played in the background.

I pride myself on being able to pick up positive energy vibes. Every single speaker who spilled their life’s transparency, gave me inspiring levels of goose bumps! I’ve always heard, sharing is caring, yet somehow in the process of sharing, each and every single testimony intentionally gave the room full of attendees, food for thought. Anyone who was in attendance will more than likely tell you of at least one important aspect he or she learned as a knowledgeable take-away. When you can gather together our young millennials, and our respected senior generation at the same table, smiling, chatting, and breaking bread, you’ve accomplished diversity. Vendor stations created a very relaxing experience for those who enjoy stumbling upon something a little special to take home.

Quote of the day: Neisha Himes – G.R.O.W. Foundation

“Your crown matches every outfit, never take it off”

This well-organized event included a wonderful host, comedian Ryheem Johnson captured the audience with his clean cut, and let me add entertaining humor straight out of the gate. His intermittent jokes proved to be just what was needed to change up the mood during the conference. Life is not always kind, healthy discussions of how to step up and endure any adversity being thrown at you is a topic we should all be interested in hearing. Telling a story in mime, or standing on a stage takes courage, but the healing begins way before making a choice to share your life with others. Manny Mitchell spoke enthusiastically on the storm of rejection, how starting a career with no arms proved what we all know to be true….”What GOD has for you, is for you”…

We all have a story, are you empowering others with your enduring journey?

I had the pleasure of a short interview with the founder of the Enduring Conference, Mikia Shae Troche, her spirit of authenticity glowed as bright as any diamond in the swankiest of jewelry stores. Having survived a stroke, being wheel chair bound, amongst other adversities, never gave her permission to quit. This beautiful queen endured every negative emotion imaginable, she cried, she prayed, and then with the help of her loving husband, she got up for the win.

Mikia captured the attention of her audience with a powerful heartfelt speech as she ended the conference. The topic, “You Do Not Have Permission To Quit”, resonated throughout the entire room, as if she were standing on stage with a bullhorn.

Every head nodded in agreement, without blinking an eye….

Thank you, for the amazing opportunity to blog your event, while interacting with your panel of fascinating speakers. Every testimony held value to someone in the room. Bravo Sista!

Honorable Mention: Nicole Armstrong, Juanita Ricks, Ryheem Johnson, Manny Mitchell, Jada Danielle, Jay Harris, Suzette Meeks, Neisha Himes, Shakeya Nesbitt, Tanisha Thompson, and keynote speaker Mikia Troche

Follow Enduring Conference via Facebook, be sure to attend the 2nd Semi-Annual conference on January 25, 2020.

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Enduring Conference, Mikia Shae Troche, Dakota Somerville

 

 

Check -Your -Soil

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As I Open my Mind

my petals become free

to be the woman

God intended me to be

As I Open my Mind

my soil becomes healthy

embracing the universal gift

that someday I will be wealthy

As I Open my Mind

i learn to SEE

with the third-eye

that was given to me

I check my SOIL

so my petals will flourish

my mind will be nourished

As I Open my Mind

weeds with thornes disappear

allowing a ray of sunshine

to miraculously re-appear

I Opened My Mind

Today.

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Dakota Vibe

 

 

 

“Bea Great, Bea Positive, Bea You”

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Mouth Watering Sweet Potato Cheesecake Dessert

Have you ever dreamed of having your own personal chef? Of course, we sometimes crave those delectable homemade yummies we see displayed on our television screens. About a year ago, I became acquainted with a young single mother, who also happened to be an aspiring chef on the rise. She was somewhat soft spoken, but I could see she was ever so hungry to succeed. I really connected with Chef Bea, also known as Chef Beatrice Copeland, owner of ‘Oh My Loaf, LLC.

Chefbea9 Chef Beatrice Copeland

It gives me a tremendous amount of pleasure to watch this young chef blossom in the business woman she always hoped to be. Its inspiring, anytime a single mother works towards her dreams, you can find me somewhere in the background cheering her on. I had a chance to stop by Chef Bea’s pop up Sunday Brunch, located in Virginia Beach, at the well known Phoenix Restaurant and Lounge. Now listen, I’m nowhere near being a food critic, but what I admittedly am is a foodie girl. The atmosphere was warm and friendly, highlighting my down to earth palate with every food item I love, including an omelet station, shrimp and grits, with an assortment of fruit.

Chef Beatrice, your new positive mantra is certainly appropriate for the trajectory of your culinary path, salute from one single mother to another.

Bea Great, Bea Positive, Bea You

Exciting moves are on the horizon for this lovely young chef, soon she will be blessing us with a bakery filled with sweet treats, and vegan choices, as well. Plans are underway for a easy to access location in the Military Circle Mall food court. Currently Chef Bea has a variety of vegan, dairy free treats available in Norfolk, at Jikoni Café. Stop by and grab a vegan banana bread loaf, or perhaps you’re a chocolate chip lover, is so, check out her newest creation…Chocolate Chip Vegan Banana Bread! O’ My Loaf….Well done baby girl, keep baking your way one loaf at a time, success is closer than it appears.

Fresh product shipping is available as needed. For your unique personal chef experience, you can find Chef Beatrice via social media.

Instagram: Chef_bea7          Facebook: ChefBea Copeland

Photo Credit: Dakota Somerville & Chef Beatrice Copeland

Author: Dakota Somerville

 

Men’s Fashion Extravaganza 2019

MFW7 Media Blitz

Men’s Fashion Week Virginia 2019, set the fashion industry ablaze, making it very clear, Southeastern Virginia has arrived on the men’s  runway stage with great panache.

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“Real men do wear pink”

Designer: Kenny “Kas” Flanagan – Model: Marcus DeVaughn Sr.

The week of April 8th through April 13th will be remembered in the Hampton Roads community, as the week local and national men’s wear designers elevated our fashion consciousness to the next level. Celebrity producer/host Ron Cooke, along with assistant producer/designer of “Reckless Brand” Mario Daughtry, put together an unforgettable collaboration of new spring designs.

I emphatically feel confident in saying, with a limitless diversity in style, there was something pleasurable to the eye, for each and every event attendee.

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Fashion Week is exciting, every year the designers get to showcase what they’ve been working on. The models get the prestigious honor of presenting those designs to the public, and they walk proudly each night. The added element of the pedestal used in some of the shows, give a fascinating mannequin look to the overall presentation. Virginia is not only for lovers, the state is also a mecca for brilliant fashion designers, as proven by the spectacular talent displayed during Men’s Fashion Week 2019. This being the third year solidified the hashtag usage seen all throughout social media, #MFWV is trending globally amongst the who’s who in the industry, and beyond.

“Some people wear clothes that reflect their mood, others wear clothing that changes their mood, hence we have fashion”

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Local designers were impressive with urban clothing styles, and edgy streetwear, for a more comfortable lifestyle. I loved how their clothing lines reflected a super cool hip-hop vibe.

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With a total of six fashion shows during the course of one week, Men’s Fashion Week embraced every genre of style, from sexy European to kick-back Eclectic. As a blogger, I’m always paying attention to the audience comments, and how they respond to the models. Listen! I just want my readership to know, most attendees were amazed to find out some of the shows had no cover charge at all. 

Dillards – Featuring Spring/Summer Fashions

Springtime in southeastern Virginia has a special meaning. These two models are wearing the perfect attire to check out all the happenings along the beach. This years fashion week didn’t snatch my edges, but I must admit a number of female event attendees left with sore necks! 

From the opening night reception at Baila Fuzion Dance and Creative Arts Studio, to the closing night men’s fashion story “Read” at the gorgeous Slover Library, the energy level never changed. The production team, models, and D J’s (Dave Champion and D J Pynk Dyamond) gave a stellar performance, on each and every night. Bravo…Bravo…Bravo, to a successful men’s fashion extravaganza.

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Runway Authority, Dakota Somerville, Facebook

Event Designers:

Marva Nelson – House of LaMaica

Tracey Langford – 360 Vintage Designs

Kenny “Kas” Flannigan – Kas Collection

Malcolm Staples

Kevin Dickens – KD Sports

TEAM L.A.M.B.

STALLIA – Premium Urban Apparel

PURSUIT

Reckless Kids

Sponsors:

Phillip Michael Fashion for Men

Upscale Men’s Fashion

Dillards

 

 

 

 

“I’m a grown woman with Moods and Attitudes”

attitudeblogpi3 Model, Kate Melde

Have you ever felt like a chameleon? If you are a woman, of course you have, based on the circumstances surrounding your day-to-day life. There are moments of loneliness, when the only thing you can do is to close your beautiful eyes, embrace yourself with positive affirmations, and secure your head space with self-love.

attitudeblogpic1 Model, Vanessa Frances Chini 

Have you ever felt like a princess? I can personally answer yes, maybe even a vintage princess, one who knows he’s not coming into your life riding the proverbial white horse. No….he’s stepping to your world, fully confident of his capabilities to make you happy.

attitudeblogpic2 Model, Gilca Lorenis Perez

Have you ever felt like the queen of side-eye? At some point in life, you will need to give them the business, and own every single glare. Remind your mental psyche that you are a grown woman with moods and attitudes.

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Bronze Magazine, photographer Shanal Belton

 

Community Magic Exemplified

DREAMDAY2  Red Carpet Smiles

“My heart is singing a tune of black girl magic on auto repeat, it’s like not being able to un-see the most beautiful women in Hampton Roads, Virginia”

What am I talking about, you may ask? Well, I’m talking about a vision that turned into a fabulous reality, on Sunday, September 16th in the heart of downtown Norfolk Virginia at the highly popular Slover Library. Dream Dap Inc. launched a charity program to help support single mothers and fathers with down payment assistance needed to purchase a home.

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Queen Claudine Ellis, Sequoia Youngblood and Celebrity Hip-Hop Artist NO Malice

Hurricane Florence was somewhat lurking in the midst of this successful event, but with hard work, lot’s of prayer warriors, and angels smiling down on the purpose intended, this party became the talk of the town. As I mingled inconspicuously through the huge crowd of attendees, everyone glammed in blue jeans and white tops with a lovely glow of happiness, set off with the biggest of smiles. Queen Claudine greeted her guest as if we all were celebrities in her eyes, from pictures on the red carpet to line dancing in the main room, O’ my goodness, how can I not mention the VIP lounge and its colorful ambience. From my personal perspective I deem this charity fundraiser as perfect in every way possible!!!

The Gourmet Appetizers were Impeccable 

Chicken & Waffles…Crab Balls…Cucumber Cream Bites

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Chef Tasha*Chef Beatrice*Chef Dominique

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Vendor*TraciLynn Jewelry*Treavce Whitmore

We are magic when we come together as a community of intelligent beautiful women, who aspire to a level of success. Special recognition and kudos’ go out to a dedicated single mother for beating the pavement to make sure everything and everyone lined up as envisioned by the founder of Dream Dap Inc., Riika Wright you are a real MVP.

1st Ever Facebook Party*Riika Wright*Energi Logan

DJ Dave Champion entertained the crowd with a diverse music sound, a bit of old mixed with the new. Group “KARAOKE” was as much fun to watch, as it must have been to participate, judging from the laughter and enthusiasm of the party goers. The fabulous stage host Ginger Savage killed her themed outfit with studded six-inch heels, every woman in the room, including myself had major shoe envy…..

Ginger Savage and Dakota Vibe enjoying the rooftop

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Vendor*Pink Zebra*Candle Wax Display Smells of Heaven

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When your heart is filled with a giving spirit, it becomes a vibe that will attract an awesome tribe. Let us all raise our glasses to the future success of Dream Dap Inc., single mothers and fathers who connect with this wonderful charity will forever remember Claudine Ellis, we however, like to refer to her as Queen Claudine.

~BRAVO JOB WELL DONE

For information: Visit Dream Dap Inc. via Facebook

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Dakota Vibe and Facebook Attendees

#1stEverFacebookParty

 

A Party With A Purpose

DREAM2 Claudine Ellis

Philanthropy never looked so beautiful, with her vision, and a dream to help single moms and dads become home owners.

Hampton Roads, better known as “Southeastern Virginia” is well-known for it’s highly publicized social events. On September 16th, you don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to be a part of history in the making. Dream Girl Claudine Ellis will set the Slover Library on fire, with her new project launch, Dream DAP, Inc.

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The 1st EVER Facebook Day-Party will not only bring together many of the areas movers and shakers, this clearly thought out brainstorm will unite a very supportive community of volunteers and those who have a village mindset of togetherness.

WHEN: Sunday, September 16, 2018
WHERE: Slover Library, 235 Plume Street, Norfolk, VA 23510
TIME: 1pm-5pm
THEME: White Top and Blue Jeans

Come out, take Pics on the Red Carpet, win prizes, shop vendor stations, while you enjoy scrumptious food items, but don’t get too full, because dancing is highly recommended for this lit day party. I have one hundred brand new business cards ready to go, as I mingle about, blogging the DEETS of the DAY, in all my Cuteness!

Norfolk, Virginia has never seen anything of this magnitude when it comes to a day party in a downtown library. The Slover Library and its magnificent glass architecture is the perfect venue to kick-off all of the hard work, media chats, and long hours of planning put in by Claudine and her dream team.

                   “A PARTY WITH A PURPOSE”

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Good food shall be consumed, laughter will fill the room, friendships will be made, while positive inspiration overtakes the hearts and minds of all who attend…..

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Dakota Somerville, Claudine Ellis – Photographer