You Can Leave Your Hat On!


I love hats, y'all. But, ask me when was the last time I wore one. I think my cruise to the Bahamas in 2008 might've been the last time I wore a couple and felt comfortable doing it. AKA_Hat

I think hats lend themselves to a certain hot-damn-ness as an accessory. Amirite? I always feel extra classy and my Mami Swagger meter goes off the chart.

So when my graduate chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha decided that we were going to hold a Kentucky Derby Soiree as a scholarship fundraiser, I was all over it. Granted, I think I shopped for hats prior to running the potential for raising funds on this one (don't judge me!). Let's just say I was excited on two fronts. First, I get to continue to help fund the awesome scholarships that we provide and second, I get to wear a big hat and hang out with my friends wearing big hats too!

Win-win, folks. Win-win. The event will be held on Saturday May 3rd at The Phillips House from 2 - 6 p.m. and I couldn't be happier with the location. A beautiful, lush atmosphere will go splendid with the soiree.

Of course as soon as I could, I created a Pinterest board for my hats. Nothing new there, right? Follow Sili - My Mamihood's board Derby Delight on Pinterest.

I also went ahead and created an eBay Collection. This is a serious matter folks. I ended up purchasing two hats from my eBay collection. I thought I should since I didn't have an outfit selected yet. And besides, perhaps having hats in the house will get me out of being shy about wearing them. I always think I'm going to draw a ton of attention to myself if I wear hats and admittedly, this is the main reason I don't wear them. Isn't that weird? Here are some of the selections from my collection.


I don't think I'm going to tell you which one I will be wearing. A girl has to leave a little mystery, right? Besides, you'll see which one I picked when you see me at the Soiree. Tickets are still available but they are selling fast. Don't forget to tell them I invited you.

Two things: 1. which hat do you think I'll wear and 2. which hat will you be getting for yourself?

Community Corner: Miss Pearl of Promise

One of the things that I love is the fact that throughout the year, there are opportunities that I can share with you that will allow you to help our community. This time around I want to tell you about our inaugural Miss Pearl of Promise scholarship pageant and silent auction. It will take place on Saturday, June 8, 2013, and is being hosted by Ivy Tea Rose, Inc.® and Nu Iota Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. After completing a series of workshops through the Emerging Young Leaders mentoring program, participants will showcase their talent and be recognized for their community and academic achievements. The pageant will be a culminating presentation, reflecting ten months of leadership, educational, cultural, and community service activities that will enhance young girls’ lives.

MPOP FlyerThe young lady crowned “Miss Pearl of Promise” will be awarded a $1,000 scholarship. Other awards include Miss Congeniality, Miss Photogenic, and monetary prizes for 1st and 2nd runner-up.

All proceeds from “Miss Pearl of Promise” will be used to provide scholarship funds to each winner, as well as support academic scholarships, and other essential community programs. Since Ivy Tea Rose, Inc.® is a 501 (c)(3) organization that promotes education, health, and social development of children and families, up to fifty percent of all ticket purchases are tax-deductible. Monetary and in-kind donations made to Miss Pearl of Promise are 100% tax deductible.

I have the pleasure of being part of the team of women that are supporting one particular young lady, 7th grader, Ms. Giavonni D. She is ahmazing! Not only is she bright and enthusiastic but rumor has it she is designing clothes and making beautiful garments already! You know how I feel about creativity.

How can I help, Sili?

So glad you asked! Pretty simple, really:

  1. Purchase a ticket (or 5). When you do, be sure to tell them you're purchasing your ticket in support of Ms. Giavonni D.
  2. Want to purchase an ad in the souvenir program book? You can either advertise your business or show your support by sending your well wishes to the inaugural event in the form of a paid ad. Ads can range from a full-page ad ($100) to an 8th-page ad ($20). Not bad, right? Shoot Ashley Foster an email if you're interested
  3. Have a product or service you'd like to donate to the silent auction?  Ashley will be more than happy in assisting to get those products out of your hands  (

Go ahead and put this down on your to-do list for the week. Buy a few tickets and come join us! I'd love to see you supporting the community and this outstanding group of girls. So, what do you say?

Senior (Citizen) Prom


I want to tell you about this event. It is a favorite of mine. The beautiful ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated's Nu Iota Omega chapter are putting on a Senior (Citizen) Prom. For fourteen (14) years, Nu Iota Omega Chapter has showered the Senior Citizens of Eatonville, Maitland, Winter Park, North Orange, South Seminole counties and surrounding communities with love through its celebration at the Annual Senior Citizens Sweetheart Luncheon. Last year a new idea took hold and the ladies of Nu Iota Omega had its first Senior Prom for the Senior Citizens of our community.

I remember not knowing what to expect and then seeing the seniors marching in dressed to the hilt. Some in wheelchairs, some with canes but all wearing a beautiful smile on their face. By the end of the night, we were all dancing it up and I was so glad I went. I sometimes feel that we don't honor our elderly as we should in this society.

This is a very special time where we get to shower them with the love and respect they deserve. A little food and a lot of dancing ain't too shabby either!

If you know of a senior that could use a special night out, please let them know about this and be sure to RSVP because last year, we were at max capacity.  This celebration is reserved for our Senior Citizens only ages 55 years and above.

Here are the important details:

  • It's FREE
  • There will be dinner and dancing
  • It's held at the Winter Park Community Center
  • February 9th, 2013 from 5:00 - 8:00 p.m.

And did I mention this is a free event? Okay, just checking. Head on over to Nu Iota Omega's website and RSVP online or email

Community Service Awards

I am privileged to be part of the Nu Iota Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. For those that do not know, Black sororities and fraternities establish graduate chapters in order to continue their service to the community past their college years. Being part of this great sorority affords me a great deal of opportunity to help my community but also to meet people that inspire and motivate me.  This year, our chapter, along with Ivy Tea Rose, Inc., our 501(c)3 foundation, is hosting the 7th Annual Community Service Awards in which we honor those members of our community that have shown their passion and drive to help others. I want to tell you a little about each honoree and hope that you will be able to join us as we celebrate their work.

Community Category:

Frinzetta Boman – a loving teacher and member of her church, Ms. Boman’s love and dedication to children doesn’t stop there. She is a foster parent and has had over 100 children pass through her caring hands. After teaching at Ivey Lane Elementary and starting a choir for the kids there, she was moved to to create Heavenly Voices Gospel Choir. Children 4 to 15 are welcome to sing and they have done so for dignitaries including the president. Ms. Boman inspires her children and literally gives them a voice that helps make this world a better place.

Humanitarian Category:

Nadine Mentor – Ms. Mentor has travelled the world on numerous mission trips aiding those less fortunate in Haiti and Africa. On one of several trips to Haiti with Cap Haitien Health Network/Haiti Help Med, she coordinated a collection drive which flew emergency medical equipment and supplies for deserving families following the nation’s devastating earthquake. Her efforts helped the Orlando-based organization raise over $80,000 in cash and in-kind donations. Not satisfied with the global assistance she was providing, Ms. Mentor fulfilled her passion of mentoring young women on a broad scale by creating an innovative girls summer camp. The Greatest Investment Girls’ Empowerment Summer Camp (TGI) is a free four-week camp tailored to 11-year old to 18-year old at-risk girls from the Parramore and Pine Hills areas of Orlando. This year, 4 of her students are making their way through their senior year and

preparing to attend college with the guidance of Ms. Mentor and the team of women that have banded together to support this cause.

Trailblazer Category:

Yolonda Tyler – With her education in psychology and her need to help others, Mrs. Tyler embarked into the world of entrepreneurship after the birth of her child. Seeing a need for a play place where parents could bring their children to enjoy themselves as well as each other, she began to do her research and so birthed Amaya Papaya. With her daughter as inspiration, Mrs. Tyler has blazed the trail for mompreneurs in our community. Not only is AP a place where kids can play but, it is also a place where you can find other businesses showcasing their products & services, moms working together to share ideas, coupon classes and socially conscious drives like Toys for Tots.


I am proud to say that I know the humanitarian and trailblazer personally. These women are a constant source of inspiration and motivation and I would love for you to see what I mean.

It is my hope that you can join us on November 2nd to honor these women in our community. Proceeds from the event will be used to support Ivy Tea Rose, Inc. in their mission to promote academics, health education, and social development of children and families throughout Central Florida communities.  In addition, a portion of the proceeds will be used to sustain scholarships awarded by Nu Iota Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.

Friday, November 2, 2012, 7:00 pm

Location:  The Sheraton Orlando Downtown Hotel

400 W Livingston Street, Orlando, FL 32801

Tickets:  $35  -  includes dinner, live entertainment, and dancing

Dress:  Semi-formal

Keynote Speaker:  Mr. Reginald McGill

Director of Constituent Services

Office of the Mayor, City of Orlando

Sponsorships available as follows:

  • Platinum Level – $1000 (table, full page ad, logo placement, signage and verbal recognition at event)
  • Gold Level – $500 (table, full page ad)
  • Silver Level – $100 (2 complimentary tickets, 1/2 page ad)
  • Bronze Level – $50 (1 complimentary ticket, 1/4 page ad)
  • Patron – $15 (listing in program book)

Individual Ads:

  • Full page – $30
  • 1/2 Page – $20
  • 1/4 Page – $15

Ads and sponsorships must be received no later than October 20, 2012.  Tickets can be purchased through PayPal. For additional information, you can email csaawards{at}akanuiotaomega{dot}org. Be sure to tell them, Sili sent you. Letting them know this will ensure a hug from yours truly at the event. Pretty sweet, eh?  Will I see you there?