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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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

 

 

Teach One ~ Reach One ~ Invest

 

 

Plant the seed, and show them the way…

Nonprofit organizations serve many purposes. Feeding the hungry to name a few, however, nothing stands out more than a community group with a vision to serve our youth. The children are our future leaders, they are our future in a nutshell. Our beautiful brown babies from impoverished neighborhoods deserve every single opportunity of exposure to learn the when, where, and how’s of success.

 

I am truly honored to share with my readership a group of young boys who are truly making a name for themselves here in Hampton Roads, Virginia. They are learning a multitude of important life skills from some very influential pillars of our community. The Young Investors of Virginia Club comes highly recommended for any young man who has a desire to learn about entrepreneurship, real estate, and the beginnings of stock market investment. This newly formed group in my humble opinion speaks volumes to the idea of teaching one, while reaching one.

Young Investors of Virginia Club Mantra:

I am a young investor

I invest in myself

I invest in my community

I learn the generation before

I teach the generation behind me

 

Her smile is infectious, her soul is contagious, her energy is magic, and all the accolades of community merit go out to the founder, Ms. Keyzia. We first met about two years ago, at a summer dinner celebration. She sat across the table from me, filled with her vision, ready to share with the whole world, how she literally wanted to make a change. I was a bit mesmerized at first, and then I began to really listen to what she was saying about the importance of creating opportunities for our young boys to enhance their life skills. It was at that very moment, I knew she was going to embark on something special. Congratulations queen, you are the epitome of motherhood, taking a stand to help children from the lower income and high crime areas of Chesapeake, Virginia, to see a whole new world beyond their wildest imagination.

 

“A sense of pride and opportunity can make a difference”

Many of our young African American boys face an uphill battle on a daily basis, systemic poverty, and the juvenile judicial system are more often not interested in how a young man may be making strides in turning their lives around. Two of the fifteen year old’s in the Young Investors of Virginia Club, are facing unfortunate circumstances. Joining the group created a sense of leadership, they were able to see hope, and began to recruit the younger boys in their neighborhoods to join the group as well. In September of 2018, the group had a fantastic opportunity under the leadership of a licensed real estate agent to host an open house, allowing potential buyers to see their young efforts.

What about our young girls you may ask? Well, as of June 2019, Ms. Keyzia has now implemented a Sister Section to the group. I am certain, Young Investors of Virginia Club will flourish as they grow with love, and support from the Hampton Roads Community!

Contact: via Facebook Page  – Nonprofit Organization

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Young Investors of Virginia Club/ Keyzia Nikole

 

 

 

 

Check -Your -Soil

ADV1

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

 

 

 

“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

 

Call Her a Hidden Gem

 

nadine4Nadine Owens, CEO/Owner – My Brothers Keeper

Mothers are a special breed, we make many sacrifice’s in life, to assure that our children are afforded the opportunity to become self-sufficient young adults. But, just for a hot minute, place yourself in the shoes of an amazing queen, someone who has endured the unimaginable, yet she somehow finds the strength to forge ahead. I was first introduced to Nadine during our women supporting women’s meeting, we each shared our own version of inspiration, and personal triumphs. Her voice was soft-spoken, somewhat shy in nature, however, every syllable screamed of a mothers bravery.

“I am a mother of three adults with disabilities, who never gave up”

On February 21, 2019 Nadine Owens was presented with a certificate of recognition award, an honor bestowed upon her by Mayor Robert M. Dyer, of the city of Virginia Beach, Virginia. Her non-profit community organization, Our Brothers Keeper is opening doors locally for any adult with disabilities to participate in life changing activities.

nadine3Mayor Robert M. Dyer, with Nadine Owens 

Our Brothers Keeper, is the brainchild of its CEO Nadine Owens. We all know the challenges of being a mother of three, factor in the obstacles she may have faced along this journey. Caring for two autistic children, and one with severe anxiety, seems like a three person job, on any given day. Not having the resources available to accommodate her plan of care for her young disabled adults, motivated Nadine to create a resource center, where education, life skills, arts and crafts could be utilized. Make your own T- Shirt is just one of the wonderful craft classes offered at the center, along with many more to come. Women are out here making all kinds of magic happen, we salute these hidden gems for taking the imitative to support their community needs.

The “Voice of Hope Book” written by Nadine Owens, will be very instrumental in offering tools to parents of young adults with disabilities. Contact the resource center, located in Virginia Beach, Va., by calling 757-351-1310 during regular business hours.

“You are not alone”

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Nadine Owens

 

 

 

 

Charity Personified With Elegance

 

strawberriesChocolate Dipped Tequila Infused Strawberries

February is the month of love, it is a time when giving comes second nature, the air is filled with decadence and luxury. We find ourselves thinking of others, our heart’s beat to a different drum, charity can also be described as a universal gesture of love. I stopped by to share with my readership all the juicy deets from an outstanding philanthropic event that took place in Norfolk, Virginia, held at the impressively alluring Slover Library, on Saturday, February 9th. A charity with a godly purpose will attract those who support a noble cause. I can’t begin to think of anything more important than lending a supportive hand to a single parent needing down payment assistance, while holding near and dear, a deep desire to become a home owner. Claudine L. Ellis, CEO of Dream DAP, Inc and her team are making it happen.

“HEART FOR HOMEOWNSHIP FASHION GALA 2019”

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Regina Mobley, Queen Claudine Ellis, Quenie Burnz

Hollywood hit Hampton Roads, as each and every guest was greeted with valet parking, and baby it was cold outside. Walking into the venue proved to be upscale upon being welcomed at the door by actor and model Mr. Jack Rose, adorned in white glove attire. Bellissimo, is an understatement describing the ambiance, and elegant décor, I felt so much love in the room as the jazz band played a medley of mood setting tunes. The highlight of entertainment literally flew, twirled, and flipped magnificently above the beautiful architecture, capturing stares from the balcony to the lower level. Can you imagine a beautiful aerialist, floating with the grace of a butterfly? She did just that!

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Hampton Roads has quickly become well noted on the east coast as a mega fashion hub, providing some of the best professional models in the game. I want to personally bow down and congratulate all of the event models for a wonderful job done on the runway. Special mention and all hand claps go out to the one model who turned the catwalk, and staircase into an unforgettable theatrical performance. Screaming bravo…bravo…bravo to model Shawanda Lamb, you my dear are a show stopper, with the epitome of what is commonly referred to as the “It Factor” in the industry.

Shawanda Lamb – Queen of the Runway

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queen

As I buzzed around mingling with the distinguished guest, it suddenly came to my attention everyone was smiling, dancing, chatting it up with one another enjoying all the special moments of the night. This is the foundation envisioned as a successful charity event, hashtag happy people. The V.I.P guest co-mingled with the general ticket holders, which is something special to see, in my opinion. Food galore, delicious edibles made the rounds, one tray after another, filled with crab cakes, bacon wrapped scallops, steak kabobs, fruit kabobs, cake pops, and my personal favorite of stuffed mushrooms. For all the foodie lovers in the room, heaven had officially landed in a scrumptious kind of way!

crabcakes guest

“One thing is for certain, Dream DAP, Inc has arrived in a major way”

Major kudos go out to the DJ, Mr. Dave Champion for the music selections of the night. The media deserves special mention as well, I saw the lovely Ashley Dennis supporting the cause, along with many celebrities, photographers, and lets just say the who’s who tribe of Hampton Roads. We were especially honored to see the prestigious Virginia Beach City Council woman, Sabrina Wooten in the building. I have a very keen eye for celebrity spotting, without hesitation, this freelance writer made her way over to capture a quick video with Patti LaBelle’s exclusive holiday decorator, LaVoris Pace and friends, what a dapper looking trio they were. All V.I.P guest received personal catering with delicacies’, compliments of the Executive Chef from Plaza Azteca restaurant, and jaw dropping Furry Swag Bags complete with unexpected high-end goodies, including fur gloves, exotic soaps, designer glasses, and more. Don’t fret if you missed the 2019 gala, team Dream DAP has already put the wheels in motion for the Heart for Homeownership Fashion Gala 2020…..

“Congratulations Claudine, I deem you queen of the red hearts personified”

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Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Facebook, Dakota Vibe, Organixx Photography

Follow: Dream DAP, Inc. via Facebook

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alex Malay Brand

alexmaylayblogpic1“Love and Light”, as frequently quoted by owner and CEO, Rochell Malay of the global mega brand, Alex Malay. Starting a brand new year, celebrating their six-year anniversary at the top of 2019, her brand’s style and vision proves Alex Malay has definitely landed in the world of high fashion.
As many of her fashion followers may already know, Rochell began her creative business sense years ago, as a young child. She embraced a hard work ethic from her family, spinning those endearing qualities into the timeless fashion brand you see before you today. Women like to feel unique, you can also add super special, whatever your lifestyle goals are to enhance inner beauty, this brand has something designed just for you.

“We wish you to be your own kind of beautiful, and a great way to express that is through fashion”

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Oftentimes we find ourselves at a loss when it comes to gift giving, imagine just for a moment, that you are a lovely bride to be, pondering on a gift selection for each of your bridesmaids. Alex Malay has you covered, choose the “Angelic Soy Wax Candle”, with an enchanting aroma scent. Any bridal shower would certainly benefit from a beautiful display of gorgeous pink bags, filled with love, as a bonus, you may consider dropping a “Girl Power T-Shirt” in each bag. Set up a fun bridal photo shoot, someplace where you, and your bridesmaids can kick back wearing your matching T-Shirt’s. Being the classic beauty you aspire to be, is the overall mission statement for this brand.
Shopping Alex Malay should be an experience not limited to women only, there are a large number of men globally who also derive a great amount of pleasure in selecting a special outfit for that beautiful lady in their lives. He is the man who always wants his significant other to look and feel like a princess, from the inside out, when they enter the room, he is the man who wants heads to turn in adornment.

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This is a season must have for an elegant evening out and about, any man would love the rich vibrant navy tone of the “Royal Gala Skirt”, paired with a classic vintage style black fur throw.

“You never get a second chance to make a first impression”

Alex Malay is a fashion brand on the rise, capturing the attention of global customers, followers, and fans who adore the feeling of wearing such a creative style of clothing. Her integrity as a business owner is evident in the quality of her products. Timeless style and confidence are a few of her core principles, she gives you a feeling of beauty unmatched by any other brand. Women all over the world, are rushing around dealing with the everyday hustle and bustle of daily life, after all it’s the twenty-first century, and truly the age of girl power. The entire Alex Malay team is just a click away from helping you figure out your next outfit needed for any special occasion, or perhaps to just enhance your wardrobe a bit. Stay connected for the upcoming announcement of her new fashion boutique, which will be located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where you will be sure to find a little something to make your heart smile.

Blogger: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Alex Malay

Shop: http://www.alexmalay.com

 

 

 

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