Unwanted Packages

I had recently been trying to find an app that pushes bible verses to your phone but I wasn’t quite pleased with what I was seeing in the app store. I can be pretty picky when it comes to aesthetics. Anyway, I was longing for something more than just prayer every morning with my significant other.

Some time last week, I received an “unwanted” package in the mail. I didn’t pay attention to the sender but I definitely noticed it was addressed using my divorced last name. Of course, I was immediately turned off and set the package on the table. Typically, I would have thrown it in the trash but I was impressed to hold onto it.

One day, I got tired of looking at the “unwanted” package that was STILL sitting on my table. I peeled back the plastic covering and saw, “2021 Year of the Bible”. My interest was immediately piqued! 

Mind you, I had been looking for Bible verse apps.

As I flipped the book over, the color scheme warmed my soul, I read the title…“words of life”, and said to myself, ”This book is the answer to my prayers! God knew exactly what I needed!”

Across town (most likely on the same day), my significant other also received an “unwanted” package.  Now, he is more attentive than I am so HE noticed the sender…Columbia Union Conference.  Typically, he too would have thrown the contents in the trash.  However, he too was impressed to hold onto it.  He kept the “unwanted” package in the plastic covering for a few days, as well.  One day he finally decided to check out the contents in the plastic covering.  He also received the “words of life” devotional from the Columbia Union Conference.  His response to receiving the devotional was different from mine but he still decided to hold onto it.

A little background…

As a couple, we agreed to have dinner and “Wednesday Night Prayer Sessions”. So, January 6th, I arrived at his house, walked upstairs, and placed my things on the barstool. I glanced at the counter and saw the devotional and immediately had to gather my thoughts because I didn’t recall bringing mine. So, I inquired about the devotional and he told me the story above.

For the past few years, I have been anti-religion, anti-prayer, anti-Jesus…just keeping it 100 (but that’s another story). But 2020 taught me that I must rely on GOD not religion. 

Growing up Adventist we were taught that during the last days we would be worshipping in our homes because our churches would be closed.  HA! We never thought that the churches would be closed due to a pandemic. Columbia Union Conference was proactive by publishing and distributing a timely “unwanted” package has been a blessing to me and my relationship. It is amazing to sit back and contemplate how God is guiding two different people, on opposite ends of the beltway, opposite genders yet are simultaneously experiencing God working in the same manner.  God knew before I began my search for the perfect bible app that a tiny “unwanted package” would provide the “extra quality time” that I was longing for. Thank you, Columbia Union Conference for my timely and MUCH NEEDED PACKAGE! 

~ Elle

1:39 AM

Tossing and turning

Breaking into a cold sweat

Body ignites and sleep is broken

 Hands fumble upon my phone

Notification illuminates

Glance at the phone to open…

Message read

 I wish I hadn’t woken up

I wish I hadn’t picked up my phone

I wish I were back home

I wish these things would just stop…


I wish I had the power to take the hurt away

 I wish I could run outside and scream

I wish no one would hear me

I wish I could cry,

But I’m afraid

If I start

I won’t stop!





Is he really absent?

Being a single parent is EXTREMELY hard!  Sometimes it is a choice other times…NOT SO MUCH.  I’ve been a single mother and it’s not easy. BUT I’ve also had the support of my children’s fathers one way or the other.

I recently saw a meme on either Facebook or Instagram (I can’t remember) and when I saw it the first thing that crossed my mind was, “This is a sad but a true reflection of so many households.”  I continued to scroll without liking because although it is a true reflection of MANY households, it is not MY reality, therefore NO LIKE FROM ME!

Before I get to the main reason for waking up in the middle of the night with this darn meme on my mind and the urge to write…I also know women that are living that meme.  The meme is a true depiction of their past or current situations; whether the father be ordered to pay child support and doesn’t or the father doesn’t pick up his child when he says he will and disappoints the child time and time again, so much so that the child no longer becomes excited because he/she knows disappointment will follow. A woman in this situation may very well like the meme and has every right to do so, as it is her reality.

BUT, there is gonna be that BITTER BITCH that will tag her “Baby Daddy” on that meme because he has moved on and is no longer with her and she’s in her feelings; she’s trying to drag him because she is miserable with herself; or she’s just trying to get a negative reaction from the father.  If this is you, YOU ARE LAME!

Let’s take a look at the definition of absent and absentee parent.  ABSENT – (adjective) not present in a place, at an occasion, or as part of something. Hmmmmmmm! ABSENTEE PARENT – is a parent who either wanders in and out of the child’s life, is inconsistent, one who was an active part of their child’s life before abruptly CEASING (putting an end to) contact, or a parent who has never been involved in the life of their child. HMMMMMMMM!

If a father IS in fact not only paying child support but spending time with his child, is he absent? Mind you, absent means not a part of something.

This goes to those women that are gonna screenshot that meme and send it to their child’s ACTIVE father or tag him on FB or IG:


If your child’s father is in his/her life, Sis, he is NOT absent.  No matter how hard you try to make him look bad, Sis, the man is present! LOL!  You are just bitter because he chose to leave, you chased him away, or simply let him go.  But also, SIS, you can’t fault a man if you refuse to let him see his child.  Stop being CHILDISH and making everything about you, SIS! Your child will be better off if you put your bitter ass feelings to the side and allow that father to step up (if he’s willing) and be a father to his child.  There are so many things that we as women cannot show or give our children like their fathers.  Little girls need their daddies to teach them how women should be treated.  Little boys need their daddies to teach them how to be men…WE CAN’T DO THAT! So, Sis, put on your BIG GIRL PANTIES and let that man be a father to his child and stop trying to guilt trip him because YOU in fact are the guilty party! Guilty of keeping your child away from his/her father. Guilty of holding onto the past. Guilty of manipulation. Guilty of being a selfish, evil, bitter HAG! GET OVER YOURSELF!


~ Elle

Found it!

Say Yes to the Dress or…

My friends and I went to Mary’s Designer Boutique in Annapolis, MD in August 2017.  We were so excited about being together and looking for the perfect dress for the bride to be.  We walked into the boutique and there was a sign that reads, “I said YES to the Dress”.  This made us even more excited and we wiped out our phones and began to snap (Snapchat). We tiptoed toward the dresses and then Mary came over and directed us to our seating area.

This is supposed to be an exciting, fun, and momentous occasion for the bride to be BUT…Mary’s Designer Boutique left much to be desired. Mary, the owner, was very impersonal, inattentive, uninviting, and hurried. Customer service is extremely important to me. My friends and I had a scheduled appointment but felt as if other customers were more important. Mary left our party for another customer and NEVER came back to check on us. She then had her receptionist helping us find dresses etc. The receptionist was CONSTANTLY on her phone. As SOON as she stepped out of the dressing room…ON THE PHONE. She walked over to get another dress and she was hiding between the dresses…ON THE PHONE. THIS WAS A MAJOR PROBLEM! Then Mary told us that every place in the area had the same dresses and we wouldn’t find anything else.

I posted the above on her FB page only to find out that we were not the only people that had a horrible experience at her shop.  Another potential client, Haley (whom I’ve gotten permission to use her review) said the following:

I just had the worst dress shopping experience here. They are very pushy and only care about making the sale. Once we walked in they were rude about how many people I had with me, even though I cleared the number with them at first. Mary claims to be a designer with her “originals” however I ran into an old employee of Marys (worked there for a good amount of time) and she said that she doesn’t even make these dresses and Mary is just a scam artist who puts her own tags on designer dresses. She made me feel uncomfortable in the dressing room since she wanted to be in there the whole time and also got mad at me when I couldn’t tell her exactly what I did and didn’t like about each dress. She also told me was last minute on buying a dress… my wedding is almost 10 months out. Needless to say I left in tears. Mary and her employees are unprofessional, rude, and only care about the sale. Avoid at all costs.

There are many more reviews just like the above on Mary’s Facecbook page.  It’s sad that someone is running a business in such a manner that turns people away.

We DID find a quaint shop just 10 minutes away (Love and Lace) with SUPERB customer service from the time we set foot in the door. I suggest you pass Mary’s Boutique unless you like unsatisfactory customer service and cold shoulders. Even if the bride had found a dress, it wouldn’t have been purchased from Mary’s Bridal Boutique.

Until next time!

~ Elle

The Rih’l Deal

September 8, 2017 the make-up industry changed FOREVER!  Robyn Rihanna Fenty launched her own beauty line via Sephora.  Rihanna took her time with this beauty line and continues to launch different products every so often.  The original launch released my absolute favorite product…INVISIMATTE.  Invisimatte is a blotting powder that is INVISIBLE and works WONDERS (THANKS, Rihanna!).

Let me just tell you how wonderful this product is. My skin is EXTREMELY oily and due to that fact I rarely wear makeup (I actually dislike it).  I have tried Aveda products to eliminate the oil and other natural products to also aide in cutting the amount of oil my skin produces, especially throughout the day.

I purchased my INVISIMATTE on September 8, 2017 and instantly fell in love with it. I have used the product faithfully everyday after my purchase.  The amount of oil my skin produces…reduced significantly.  There were a few days that I forgot to put it on and there was a noticeable difference…the shine was BACK.


December 31st was the test of all tests!  As I stated previously, my skin is EXTREMELY oily and as a result the amount of shine is insane.  I decided that I HAD to wear my INVISIMATTE blotting powder for New Year’s Eve or else I’d be wiping my face before every picture (embarrassing).  I went through my normal facial regime…I washed my face, blotted some of the water, then applied my lotion, let the lotion soak in and then applied INVISIMATTE to my entire face.  After the INVISIMATTE application, I applied my eyeshadow, foundation (powder), eyeliner,  and finishing spray.

My makeup lasted from 7:30pm until 2:30 am.  I refreshed by simply applying a once over of INVISIMATTE with my Fenty Beauty touch up brush.  I didn’t have to wipe any shine off of my face.  I didn’t feel shiny the entire night and I felt AMAZING!

The next product I MUST try is her foundation. I am afraid but I think it will be worth the try, as INVISIMATTE has already proved to be a GREAT investment.

Thanks Rihanna!


Attention is expensive to pay! I can’t get by on minimum wage! ~ Jhene Aiko https://youtu.be/M8F-H3M3ttw

Relationships can be complex! You have two people from different upbringings, with different life experiences.  Choosing to be in a relationship requires time, devotion, consideration, sacrifice, and will!

When we see someone that sparks our interest or that we think may fit our profile as a potential significant other, we don’t often think about all that goes into maintaining that “INTEREST”.

The calls and texts begin coming in on a regular.  Then the long, late night conversations occur that end with “No, you hang up,” or the falling asleep with each other on the phone just to wake up in the middle of the night to hard breathing, snoring, or a dial tone (throwback).

Courting – to be involved with romantically. Synonyms – set one’s cap for, romance, dating, woo

We court the “love interest” and get them accustomed to spending quality time but then reality sets in. Work, family, friends, bills…just everyday life become factors that change the consistency of courting and often, the person that we sought after must take the back seat.  This can be dangerous territory if not dealt with properly. It’s OH SO important to make sure that the significant other doesn’t remain on the back burner.

Courting an “interest” is what led to the relationship that you are now in.  Maintaining that “interest” (even in marriage) is imperative!  Attention is expensive to pay…is your man or lady worth that wage?

The Right to Choose

*Cue music*

“My way, my way

You can’t satisfy her needs

She keeps runnin’ back to see me do it

My way, my way

What I say goes

And I’m in control”

~ Usher (My Way)

Usher! Usher! USHER! So, you’re in control, huh?  I bet you wish you were in control of this situation that is SPIRALING OUT OF CONTROL!

I’m not going to make light of the situation, as this is nothing to laugh at.  We can all say things like: “Well, the women knew better.” “She (however many “shes” there were) should have requested he use a condom.” OR “We know the risks of unprotected sex.” etc.

Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!  We’ve all had unprotected sex at one time or another. SO, CUT THE JUDGING!  The thing that sticks out to me, is that he failed to disclose this information to these women. Hence, his way or the highway.

Usher was out here playing God with these women’s lives.  Instead of revealing this information and allowing them to make a choice; he said, “My way…I’m in control”.

They should’ve been given the opportunity to choose…bottom line.  9 times out of 10, had he revealed the truth…all of these women and 1 man wouldn’t be suing him for sexually transmitting an incurable disease.

 “Let’s talk about sex, Baby

Let’s talk about you and me

Let’s talk about all the good things

And the bad things that may be

Let’s talk about sex!”

Salt-N-Pepa (Let’s Talk About Sex)


Communication is key! Be safe out there!

FACTS: In the United States, about one out of every six people aged 14 to 49 years has genital herpes.  You contract herpes by having vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the disease.


Girls Trip

Cyndi Lauper said it best, “Girls just want to have fun!”

Girls Trip featuring: Queen Latifah, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Regina Hall, and Tiffany Haddish was nothing short of hilarious!  I’ve seen the movie three times and laugh EACH and EVERY time.  Due to the laughter of the crowd…I heard something new each time.  The movie is a feel good, real life comedy about four black women that attended college together.  However, life after graduation has gotten in the way of their quality time.  They are given the opportunity to go on a “Girls Trip” to New Orleans, where they reconnect with one another.  The storyline was realistic yet comical.

For those of you that have not seen the movie, I will not spoil it for you! PROMISE 😊

This morning, my aunt tagged me on a vlog about “Girls Trip”. I watched the vlog and was immediately annoyed by the vloggers opinion.  Now everyone is entitled to their opinion, but I’m just trying to figure out what planet she lives on.

The vlogger stated that “Girls Trip” was a disappointment, disgrace, extremely offensive, raunchy, stereotypical, and unrealistic.

Things I’d like to ask this vlogger:

  1. Do you have any friends?
  2. Are any of your friends black females?
  3. Were you allowed to have fun as a child?
  4. Where did you grow up?
  5. Did you attend college?
  6. Where do you live now?
  7. Does your Mom love you?
  8. Do you need a hug?
  9. Do you even know HOW to laugh?
  10. Did you even go out with your “friends” in college?
  11. Is your husband successful? (I peeped a wedding ring.)
  12. Are you happy in your marriage?
  13. What’s your husband’s ethnic background?
  14. Why is it necessary for a woman to have/keep a man in order to be complete?
  15. Do you attend church? (I know plenty of women just like Dina, Ryan, Sasha, and Lisa that attend church.)
  16. Have you ever needed time away from reality?
  17. Are your panties too tight?
  18. Do you have open conversations with your female “friends”?
  19. Do you EVEN know how to laugh?
  20. Are you in touch with reality?

Again, her opinion is just that…her opinion!  I just DO NOT AGREE!  However, I do understand it (after having an in-depth conversation with my best friend).

Based upon my experience, I know women that exhibit similar qualities and experiences of each character depicted in this movie.  These women, including myself did not ask for these experiences. Living REAL life can throw a monkey wrench in your plans and dreams; it’s all about how you deal with your reality.  As a matter of fact, Tiffany Haddish, who played Dina “The Wild One”, grew up in foster homes.  Tiffany seems to be very street smart, funny, “loud”, but extremely WELL ROUNDED!  Does she fit a stereotype?  I’m sure she does, but her experiences shaped her personality.  I’m shocked that a “black woman” would bash this film.

Now, there is another film similar to “Girls Trip” entitled “Rough Night” (mostly Caucasian cast).  I have not seen this film and will probably just wait until it’s available on On Demand.  I watched the trailer to see how similar that film was to “Girls Trip”.  They are similar in that, a group of women got together for a trip.  However, in “Rough Night” they end up killing a man.  Hmmmmmm!  The stereotype here…THAT PRIVILEGE shows up.  I don’t know the outcome but I’m sure they didn’t get arrested for killing a man. I’d like to hear the vloggers take on “Rough Night” as well.

With all the being said, LIGHTEN UP!  To those that have seen the movie continue to support and take your girlfriends that have not seen it. SUPPORT OUR BLACK SISTERS!  The movie was phenomenal and is sure to be a CLASSIC.  This movie showed that we CAN get along and we CAN be successful! We may not always agree with one another, we may argue, but in the end our love for one another outshines all the drama.  #BlackGirlsRock  #BlackGirlMagic

“When the working day is done

Oh when the working day is done oh girl

Girls, they wanna have fun!”~Cyndi Lauper (Girls Just Want to Have Fun)

Attached is the vlog I referred to. If you haven’t seen the movie…DO NOT WATCH this video, as it is a spoiler. 


Thanks for Understanding

Grief: deep sorrow, especially caused by someone’s death.

Six years ago, I had the privilege of closing our family reunion with the following devotional thought:

Public speaking is really not my thing, I am more of a behind the scenes person.  Let’s pray! I have been having a rough time coming up with a message. So, I waited to hear everyone else’s message in hopes to tie them altogether but I missed several of them for various reasons. Then Evelyn’s dynamic message really discouraged me from wanting to speak.  Friday evening before the sunset, my family and I went to Walmart to make sure we had breakfast for my son. The first time we went in the wrong direction, then we got back on track, took the right exit but didn’t go down far enough and got right back on the highway. As we were driving yet again in the wrong direction, one of the girls said, “Mommy look a rainbow!”  I quickly whipped out my phone to take a picture.  I started snapping away and then opened my notes app because instantly the words “he will never leave us nor forsake us” popped into my head. But that was a far as I got.  

 Yesterday afternoon I was sitting in the lobby so I could gather my thoughts for my worship thought. Lorice came over spoke about my dilemma and she began to encourage me…He will never leave us nor forsake us. I spoke to Diane after vespers and she also encouraged me and said that I would be alright…He will never leave us nor forsake us.  If we look around we see ALL of the family members that God has blessed us with. We should be rest assured that his presence will never leave us even when we are feeling down, discouraged, when we procrastinate, even when we neglect him. He is still there letting us know…I’M HERE! He gave us such a strong, stable, God fearing family on which we can call on when things get tough.  Not very many people have the type of bond that the Fordham-Wagner Family have and we are truly blessed. When we leave here let’s not forget one another and just catch up in another two years. Let’s try to stay in constant contact with God and with one another and remember God put us in this family for a divine purpose. We must always remember that God will never leave us nor forsake us.                (Written July 30, 2011)

Correlation: a mutual relationship or connection between two or more things.

Who knew that the following day, life as I had known it…would forever be altered.

“So sad to see you go so soon

I know that you ain’t coming back

Every minute you’re gone

I’m missing you so

I can’t believe that you’re far away

Can’t get you out of my mind” 

~ Marsha Ambrosius (Far Away)


Since the loss of my brother in 2011, I haven’t given attending Family Reunion a second thought…it’s just too hard. I’ve correlated it with losing my brother, my first best friend.  Please know that I love each of dearly but this time 6 years ago, I still had a brother.  The days leading to the anniversary of his death, are the hardest for me.  I feel like God did forsake me and Family Reunion is a constant reminder of my loss.  Some may say I’m being selfish.  Sorry, not sorry…I’m still grieving.  The pressure of grief comes and goes. I must allow myself this time to grieve.

Thanks for understanding.