Why Readers, Scientifically, Are the Best People to Fall For

“Because reading is something that molds you and add to your character ,” parents, here is another reason to not only encourage and breed young readers but also a reason why you should get lost in a book.

Click here for the full article, “Why Readers, Scientifically, Are The Best People To Fall In Love With”, from Elite Daily’s Lauren Martin.

Here are a few excerpts from the article:

Screen Shot 2014-07-14 at 10.54.29 PMScreen Shot 2014-07-14 at 10.51.35 PMScreen Shot 2014-07-14 at 10.49.33 PMScreen Shot 2014-07-14 at 10.56.30 PMBe sure to head over to the original article, here.

Let us know what you think by sharing your thoughts below.

xoxo

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Take Off Your Makeup

A beautiful message within a song and video… Check out Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Colbie Caillat’s new song “Try”. I’m inspired and moved by it. The song encourages us girls and women to take off our makeup, let down our hair, love what/who we see in the mirror…

Colbie became inspired to do the song and video after growing tired of getting photoshop’d and ‘perfected’ by her team made up of makeup artists, photographers, stylists, etc, so Colbie did something about it.

“We are not alone in our insecurities.” – Colbie Caillat

Leave a comment below… what do you think? Are you OK with going to the grocery store makeup-less? Please share your thoughts

xoxo

Ploose

Who is Ce’Marie?

Who is Ce’Marie? Unsure what Ce’Marie World is all about?

I’ve got you covered! Below you’ll find the ‘About Ce’Marie’ synopsis, which you can also find housed under the ‘About Ce’Marie‘ tab. Read on and get a better sense of who Ce’Marie is. Please share your thoughts at the bottom :)

~ ♥︎ ~

Welcome to the Fabulous ♥ Fashion World of Ce’Marie! We’re excited you stopped by for a visit :)

Who is Ce’Marie: Ce’Marie is a young, spunky girl. This blog highlights her and all that she stands for — which is equality, creativity, and individuality. Ce’Marie is smart and imaginative. She loves a challenge and lives for adventures.

Our Audience: Ce’Marie World is mostly for the parents and educators of smart, brave, ‘not-your-average’ “princesses” (princesses inclusive of all: tomboys, daddy’s and mommy’s little girls, athletes, etc. – all of who are brave and special in their own way).  Non-profits and other people and establishments that cater to the needs and bright futures of young girls, can find their place here as well. You’ll also find articles for your little girls here, too. We are all in this movement together!

Think About It: Share her adventures and explore with her in her world of imagination…

Let’s take a moment to imagine your daughter expanding her mind, growing her imagination, and loving reading. Now imagine her exploring all the possibilities of who she can be. Ce’Marie books offers this & so much more! Let your daughter get hooked on reading with Ce’Marie as we expose the best, long-kept secret: Being different is the new black.

Our Mission: At Ce’Marie, we are dedicated to empowering young, fashion-forward minds with strength and self-esteem in a fun, educational way. Imagination is everything to us. We provide a safe, encouraging environment to dream and explore the possibilities. Through creativity and validation, our goals are to put more people in the media who “look like us” and to teach girls the importance of living by our motto: “E m b r a c e YOU. I n s p i r e OTHERS.” ©

Find Us! You can find Ce’Marie in action in her empowering and fashionably illustrated picture book series, self-titled Ce’Marie (coming out this summer). The book series follow her many girlhood adventures. So be sure as to always check back here with us for news, advice and quirky facts about all things girl-power and/or Ce’Marie related! — As Ce’Marie will learn and expose one of the most important, long-kept secrets to your little girls:
Being Different is the New Black.

Join the movement! Fill in the form below to be added to our email newsletters, or if you have questions, comments or concerns, leave us a note :)

8 Spare-Time Activities for Preschool Girls

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On babysitting duty? Are you the busy mommy of an adorable, high-energy preschooler who is in need of  fun ideas that will keep your little “mini-me” smiling? Or maybe you have a little granddaughter, niece, sister or goddaughter and you are looking for some high-energy, explorative girl-time activities to release some of her energy into? Well you’ve come to the right place!

Sometimes I babysit, as a side job. And I am pretty darn good at it. My objectives are always to do at least one thing educational, feed them the meal/snack their mommy left with them, have a lot of high-energy fun (this way they’ll take a nap for me, hehe) and lastly, make sure they return safely to their mothers, in one piece.

My formula is simple.

I first lay out a blanket, a blanket in which you are OK with getting a little dirty and possibly having to wash often (I figure the blanket getting dirty is much better than my carpet getting stained).

This blanket I call the “magic carpet” — they absolutely love it!

Together you two can spread the magic carpet out in a designated area, and if you’d like, you can also add pillows underneath the carpet to give it a more comfortable, plush feeling. Then each of the activities listed below are to be done aboard the magic carpet – which makes for an awesome adventure only the imagination can enjoy (not to mention a much easier and faster clean-up! – as a result, everyone is happy ;)

So… (*drumroll please) the 10 totally cool and fun activities Ce’Marie, especially, loves for her family or babysitter to do with her:

1. Read to her, better yet, with her.

By reading to her in a way that she is engaged and following along (as in having her actually looking at each word as you read each one), will help her to mentally start forming cognitive thinking and build her vocabulary.

We all have that preschooler who wants to know why and what does that mean, and why again – which is awesome! It’s really a beautiful thing how interested and curious they are at this age. And here’s a cool fact for you: From the time a child is born til the age of 5, his/her brain and knowledge is developing and growing at a faster rate than it ever will again.

When we read to children, and even talk or sing to them, their brain cells “are literally turned on” like a light switch.

2. Color pictures.

If I had to rate this activity on a scale of 1-5 for level of complication — easily, its a 0.9, meaning it’s one of the easiest activities you can provide for your little girl to do.

If your girl is anything like the preschoolers I have babysat, then she will for sure have a ball coloring pictures from her favorite character’s coloring book.

By the way, did I mention this is one of those activities that require little to no involvement? While she’s busy making her pretty pony neon yellow and red, you can kick back and read your favorite novel, get started on cooking or catch up on work. This one is pretty easy to do.

But use your time wisely and get right to whatever it is you choose to do with the down time, because once she completes the picture, it’s show and tell time.

Try skimming the coloring book with her before she begins, this way you can have her choose 3 of her favorite pictures to color. Mark those pages for her with post-its and voila!  You’ve scored yourself some time.

3. Complete puzzles and riddles from coloring activity books and/or puzzle boxes.

They are at a beautiful age, an age in which they LOVE to read, write, learn and explore. So whether it be via reading books, coloring books or activity books, learning will take place in some shape or form. Puzzles and riddles are good tools to learn analytical skills and new words, among other great benefits.

I’m a strong believer of it never being too early to introduce children to higher learning, not when it comes to academia.

And if you do not have a riddle book that is her reading level, this can turn into an activity that you two can do together.

Putting together a puzzle of her favorite characters can be interesting. It also has the ability to get her brain working, in her attempt to figure out which piece goes where. Puzzles are a good challenge, a challenge in which your little girl will not shy away from.

Without her even knowing it – she will be working on her memory and stimulating her brain’s growth.

4. Draw a masterpiece, then write the character’s story behind it.

Have your preschooler draw a picture, letting her know that afterwards she will be explaining the actual story behind her picture. This not only helps her to develop the skills of brainstorming, planning then executing, but also encourages storytelling and a love for writing and illustrating.

It’s up to you how in depth you want to go with this one.

You can have her describe to you each of the following: the setting, characters, plot and what’s going on in the picture she drew. Or, you can simply leave it at, “Draw a cool picture then write the story behind it.” With the latter directions, she will have the freedom to provide a unique story of her choice.

At this age, children are learning their likes and dislikes and discovering their skills and natural talents. So this is a fun, creative activity that you can do with her.

Have a show & tell of both of your masterpieces and enjoy allowing your imagination to run wild.

At the end of the activity, if she enjoyed it, frame her photo and story in her bedroom for her to always see and remember how fun it was to write and illustrate her own short story.

5. Create collages.

When I was a little girl, I loved to look at the pretty, glossy photos of magazines.

If you have a stack of magazines lying around (which many of us do), recycle a couple of them by giving your little girl some to sift through and find appropriate photos that in some way or another interests her or fit within the chosen theme.

Collages are great visual projects to make – you can start with a theme, for example, the outdoors. Have her find (and help her cut out) as many pictures from her two magazines that have something to do with the outdoors. Then on construction paper or a poster board (size of your choice), have her arrange the photos in a way that makes sense to her. Lastly, with a glue stick, have her glue the photos down.

Collages are great, interactive activities for finding similarities and differences in photos. Completed collages can also later become pages of a scrapbook, a scrapbook gift in fact :) You can give her a theme for each page, like daddy’s favorite thing to do, daddy’s favorite color, daddy’s favorite sport, etc. A theme specific to a particular person’s likes can become a handmade scrapbook collage gift for them (birthdays, father or mother’s day, anniversaries, etc).

When engaging in the activity, girls are actively searching and loving the exploration for something in particular, like all things “outdoors-y”. This activity gives them a head-start on developing good research skills.

**And a couple activities outside of reading & writing…

6. Paint nails.

No, like literally.

Ce’Marie is not the best at polishing the actual nail itself. She’s more of a wide-stroke painter. So I would call it more of painting your fingertips (laughs).

BUT, that’s why I have this tip for you – which can actually also turn into a fun game – place a strip of tape around each nail to serve as a “NO PAINT ALLOWED CAUTION ZONE” then play nail-zilla and Edward “tape” hands for a few minutes. It will not only be a great laugh but it will also teach your girl how to polish the nail, well for the most part.

7. Go for a walk…

At the park, around your neighborhood, at the museum, and my all-time favorite–> at the beach. Hey, I’m a Cali girl :)

Taking a walk is the perfect way to end a day of excitement. The walk will bring her back to a calm place and help her to realize just how sleepy she really is (chuckles).

If you decide to take a walk to your local park, while there, allow her to have fun on the swings, monkey bars and the other equipment there. Play with her. Take sack lunches and have a mini picnic (don’t forget the hand sanitizer!).

Museums are great places to have intellectual talks with your little one. Look at the art and take turns sharing your thoughts on it. Share with her when the work of art was made and by who. Briefly explain the artist profession to her. Her interest may be piqued by a particular something and this might just mark the start of a young Picasso.

Lastly, the beach is quite a wonderful getaway. You get to enjoy the serenity of the waves hitting the rocks and the birds chirping. But be prepared to make a day out of it. Kids love the beach even more than you do. And definitely expect your little adventurer to feel the urge to at least get her feet in the water. If your girl is anything like those I’ve babysat, she’ll want to not only get in the beach water but afterwards play in the kid’s outdoor showers.

The purpose of this last activity is to slow it down, reflect on the day’s activities and to engage in good conversation. The beach may not be ideal for this “cool down session” because an adventurous kid cannot deny the temptation of the beach water and sand. So then what should have been a quick 30-45 minute wrap-up, will indefinitely turn into a few more hours of fun. So choose the location wisely :)

Parent Bonus: Create mood boards.

Similar to collages, you can orchestrate a mood board-making party. Same materials of magazines, scissors and glue are needed, along with random trinkets (like rhinestones, buttons, feathers, yarn, crayons, etc) that may come in handy – can also be helpful to bring a 3D element to it.

The difference between the collage and mood board – for the sake of this article – is we will use the mood board to present emotions.

This is a healthy exercise for the child. It’s a clever way to keep up with how she is feeling at any given moment.

For example, explain to her that a mood board conveys her current, past or future mood. Have her describe how she is feeling today, at this very moment. We will use the emotion “happy” for an example. Have her search the magazines for anything and everything that either portrays happiness (like a smiley face or someone jumping for joy) or anything and everything that makes her happy (like picnics, butterflies and puppies), and of course she can mix the two. You can leave it at that then at the end have her explain her board.

Or, mommies, you can have her make an entire story out of it; help her to get passed a sad moment. Break it up into pieces. Instruct her to think of a moment when she was sad and have her also think about what happened that helped her return to a happy state or what could happen that will make her back happy. Have her express her emotions through magazine images.

This is a clever way to stay in-the-know about your little one. Expressing her emotions are healthy for her and enlightening to you. It will also make it more comfortable for her to openly share what’s going on and reinforce to her that you are the person she can always talk to about everything.

~ ♥︎ ~

Try out one (or all) of the activities above and let me know how it goes. Which seems to spark your interest the most? Do you have a different activity your little girl loves to do? Please share!

5 Good Reasons to Take Your Kids to the Library

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When I was around 3 or 4 years old, I remember my mother took me to the local public library. I was an avid reader by that age, whether I read the words correctly or not, I was a true storyteller – sharing an elaborate story based off its illustrations alone.

So going to a place that housed so many books, on top of books, on top of books… I was right in literary heaven! From colorful picture books to interesting topic-specific fact books, I wanted them all to come home with me. And with my new library card in tow, the library became a weekly venture for my mother and I.

Why should you make sure your kids take occasional trips to the library? Christine French Cully, Editor in Chief of Highlight Children, provides these 5 Reasons to Take Your Kids to the Library:

1. Regular library visits inevitably leads to more reading.

  • Remember, within the first 5 years of a child’s life, their brain and knowledge is working at a faster rate than it’ll ever work. So go, feed that baby’s brain. They’ll thank you in a big way later, after graduating from an Ivy League university ;)

2. When you visit the library, you can expose your kids to more books and magazines than you can afford to buy.

  • Take home as many cool books as you can carry out to the car. Then after that load is read, return it and get a whole new pile of books. Explore the many aisles of the children’s section and allow your kid to pick up his/her favorites. It doesn’t get much better than that.

3. Your local children’s librarian can recommend books that you may not know of or think to suggest, broadening their tastes and expanding their minds and vocabulary

  • Constant learning and exploring their imagination is the point, right? :) And you’ll be surprised – by what books you may see as random – your child fall in love with and want read to him/her every night

4. Library time is active, not passive

  • Libraries often host events where they bring in animated storytellers, different engaging shows and even the authors themselves come in and interact with the kids. Connecting with their favorite books and its authors along with the other little library goers, really gives the children an invaluable experience.

5. Owning a library card teaches kids responsibility.

  • Owning their own library card make kids feel responsible and important. They learn to keep up with it and value their belongings.

To read the entire, original article, click here.

How about you – what are your library stories? Do these 5 reasons sound about right to you? Or based off the 5 reasons will you now take your kids more often? Let us know below! :) #SomethingAboutCeMarie? She loves books!

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Work Cited

Original article is courtesy of Huffington Post.

View the original article here.

#BringBackOurGirls

Dear Friends,

It has been 23 days since my friends in Nigeria went missing from their beds on the night of April 15th, 2014.

I am sad and hurt by this tragedy. But I remain hopeful.

I pray everyday for all of my friends that are missing, along with their families, my other friends remaining in the area, the people of Nigeria and my American friends who have friends and/or family affected by the kidnapping.

My mommy has been allowing me to watch the news coverage about the kidnappings with her. She knows how much the well-being of the kidnapped girls mean to me. The news lady had announced around April 16th or 17th that at least 53 girls were able to escape. My mother and I were so happy to hear this! However, there are still at least 234 of our friends out there who have not returned home. But I remain hopeful.

I asked my mommy, the day after it aired, how such a thing could happen to them when they were under the supervision of their school’s officials. ‘Cause at my school, there are so many rules about the fence that protects the perimeter of my school. Like, no talking through the fence, no going outside of the fence, no fetching flying balls on the other side of the fence, no shoving things through the fence, no playing on the fence, no looking at the fence…ok, I made this last one up – but I think you get my point :). My school is very strict about the fence. And I used to hate that and complained to my mom all the time about it. But she would always tell me it was for our safety from strangers.

Now, I understand.

The news lady also told us that the men who took my friends came late at night while everyone was sleeping. I usually talk to my friend, Adebukola (I like to call her “Kola”), at least once a month around 9:00pm her time and 1:00pm my time. And my other friend, Ifeolu (I call her LuLo), at least once a month as well, but the time fluctuates. I have not heard from either of them since the kidnapping took place at their school, Chibok Government Girls Secondary School. I am worried. But I still remain hopeful. Because I know that my friends are all strong and smart. And every night before I go to sleep, my mommy, daddy, sister, brothers and I pray for them together. I pray that they are all safe and unharmed. I pray that they are even stronger than expected and more intelligent beyond their age and grade level so that they are able to figure out their escape. I also pray that Kola and Lulo are OK and safe at home with their parents.

I hope our prayers are being heard each night.

Friends, I must go now. I want to catch the ending of Oprah reruns with my mom. But I will keep you updated on whatever I hear about our girls. I will also let you know immediately when my friends either skype, email or write me a letter – I know my friends are well and safe and I am positive that I will be hearing from them soon. My mommy tells me to just pray and watch out for their communication. And I do. Everyday after school, I run home, check the mailbox, log onto skype and turn the alerts volume all the way up so that even if I am outside, I will hear the skype ringer.

xoxo,

Ce’Marie

 

 

International Reading Month – Let’s Read!!

While over on Amazon’s site looking for my pastor’s book, Purpose Awakening, I noticed on the homepage that this month is International Reading Month! What are you currently reading?

Screen shot 2014-03-20 at 8.41.08 PMLately, I’ve been reading The Writer’s Market – 2014 Edition by Robert Lee Brewer, a NYLON magazine, my business plan. I’m also slowly reading The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison and soon will add Purpose Awakening to this month’s group of books.

A few of my ‘International Reading Month’ recommendations – For the parents:

  • Purpose Awakening by Toure Roberts

& my all-time favorites since high school…

  • The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
  • Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Screen shot 2014-03-20 at 9.09.18 PMReading with the kids:

  • Oh, The Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss
  • Lies and Other Tall Tales by Christopher Myers and Zora Neal Hurston
  • Harlem by Christopher Myers

Interesting combinations, huh? :)

Let me know your thoughts along with your favorite books. What are you reading this moth?

My High School Blues… Your Daughter’s Gold

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~ ♥ ~

March 12, 2014.

Dear Parents:

After visiting the junior high school that I had attended a good 12-13 years prior, I decided to also stop by my old high school that I attended for four long years of my life. Looking back on it, those years seemed to have quickly went by, I mean, I can barely remember them now in great detail. However, once I passed its entryway, I was flooded with memories. Some good, and a lot bad.

At that moment, I remembered the days I was made to feel nervous and anxious. Those days I thought about; “Would today would be the day I would have to use the Snapple bottle I had packed in my backpack the night before for protection.” Yes, you read correctly. This is a sad reality of what kids sometimes feel they need to do in order to stand up for themselves – I was a teenager and I felt like I couldn’t just let them pounce on me without at least attempting to protect myself – I had to put up a good fight.

Looking back, I must say… I am so, so, sooo happy I never had to (or more like I didn’t have the balls to) use it. Because truth be told, that bottle could have done some serious damage. Damage that I would not dare wish to carry out on another human being, even if they were making my high school years miserable. I know this today but that wasn’t my concern back then. And now that I look back on it, I feel like I carried it more as something to ease my mind so that I was able to get through the day without the constant worry of someone messing with me… it made me feel secure. I never had the intention on using it deliberately, it was just the plan Z, a “just in case”…  And although I only carried it maybe 2-3 times (a week tops) during my entire four year attendance there, there is no doubt that there were many times that my best friend and I did not feel safe at school. For unknown, concrete reasons, some girls seemed to have been pursuing a vendetta against my bff and myself.

This was a problem then and it is even a greater problem now – in today’s schools.

After speaking with the counselor at my old junior high school, I was made aware of the bullying that goes on, which I would say is even worse than what I endured. Due to social media “mean girls” are able to taunt kids beyond 3pm. So even when school lets out for the day, the bullying does not stop (as it did when I was in high school – actually sometimes we had confrontations on the public transportation that we all took and relied on, but that was not often). And even beyond that, it has the potential to even follow you to other levels and phases of life, like college and grad school. This ugly truth is not okay. The exact opposite should be happening – the amount of bullying cases should be decreasing and our youth should feel more safe than their parents felt in school. That is how progress is made.

With that said, this is why I do what is that I do. I want to help young girls. I want to reach out to those who are without guidance, afraid, full of doubt or hurting so that I can not only share with them my story but so that I can hopefully inspire and prevent them from feeling a need to carry a Snapple bottle in their backpack as protection. No girl should have to do that. No one should have to do that.

I write and illustrate children’s books as a way to share my experiences, not only with bullying, but also with low self-esteem, shyness, fear and anxiety, peer pressure, and so on. Through my experiences, along with research, I will educate young girls on how to cope with fear, stress and other issues and emotions girls face, in a fun and fashionable way. It is time for girls to see the “cool-ness” in embracing themselves and conquering their dreams no matter what. I intend to show just that. So stick around for the adventures.

xoxo

28 Days Of Royalty: A Black Woman’s Smile

Good Morning Mothers,

*♥* This video is for you, not the babies – please be advised that the video requires Parental Guidance.

If you’ve ever been called an angry black woman, or asked to give your opinion on behalf of all your people, or went to a predominately other (Caucasian, Asian, etc.) university in which you’ve been mocked or chastised by the others or even by your fellow African Americans because you being you is simply different from them being them, or maybe you are from a background of mixed ethnicity and people attempt to degrade and downgrade you as if you are any less than who or what they are…

We understand.

Some forget the past and are insensitive to the fact that some people have a long history of turmoil, pain and hardship… However, I urge you to not sulk around and dwell on this. Let’s end the cycle of pulling out the “race card” just because we can. And instead, I challenge you to speak up and act peacefully towards a real change — and in doing so, if that’s labeled as pulling out the “race card”, so be it. It is not enough to just get angry at the ignorance we witness and are subject to but it is especially not recommended to throw ignorance at ignorance. So I propose we do our part in helping the next generation(s) see a different day and age. And in doing so, smile… Help combat the stereotype of black women being angry all the time.

Let’s work towards bringing to fruition a day and age where our children are aware of their worth. Content with the things that are happening for and by them. Aware of history – their own and beyond that. Eager to help, serve, love and be kind to others. And unapologetic for their differences–i.e. their natural skin tone and natural – big hair, larger than “average” nose and other features, likeness of a certain genre(s) of music, clothing, topics, etc. and/or choice of study in school and career.

Over at Ce’Marie headquarters, we are working towards our goal of getting more diversity into the media – first step, book 1 of la Ce’Marie picture book series.

What are you doing to make a difference for today and our future generations? Please share below :)

Until next time,

xoxo

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Work Cited:

  • Video: Ty Gray El spoken word & youtube