Monthly Archives: May 2011

Share Your Thoughts for the Day – Attitude

~ Vincent Brown Jr.

If you think you are beaten, you are.
If you think you dare not, you don’t.
If you like to win but think you can’t,
It’s almost a cinch you won’t.
If you think you’ll lose, you’re lost.
For out in the world we find
Success begins with a fellow’s will.
It’s all in the state of mind.
If you think you are out classed, you are.
You’ve got to think high to rise.
You’ve got to be sure of your-self before
You can ever win the prize.
Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man.
But sooner or later, the man who wins
Is the man who thinks he can.

Ministering Through Music – Falu Phalu

~ Princess Asha Okojie

For more than eleven years now, Christian musician Falu Phalu has been an integral, innovative and uncompromising part of ministering through music. “As a young musician I wonder, where my music comes from?” says Falu Phalu. “I’ve become a bit of a historian of Jazz and World-music genre, listening to music from across the globe. With the gift God has placed in me and the view I have of Him as a pioneer of all things and creator I strive to be like Him in such ways by reforming the known and bringing familiar things together to make the music that I would like to see happen.” He started his musical education learning to play the drums at the young age of seven and picked up other instruments in his later teenage years : the Piano, Guitar, Upright bass, Djembe and other percussions. His native Nigerian formative years found him firmly rooted in many different musical traditions, making him very fond of jazz, soul, blues, Latin Putumayo, and classical music. Right now touring, ministering and performing as an artist with very unconventional musical deliverance, Falu Phalu is out to keep bringing the unusual that we all enjoy to God’s glory. Falu pays homage to God whose masterful works of creation inspired his development as one diverse music performer creating his own style of Acoustic, jazz influenced, pop hint music with Pan African rhythms and soulful singing sometimes fused with rap. Former member of a young Christian group known as O3 (Chosen Okonrende, Miss Ree, Falu Phalu) and a pioneer of Acoustic rap, Falu Phalu reaches back to the primary sources of jazz and soul music to create his personal and spiritual interpretations of classic performers of the past and present. For example, some of his influences are Jim Reeves, Louis Armstrong, Jimmy Needham, Mali Music, Sam Cooke, Jason Mraz and Esperanza Spalding. While exploring and expressing himself through music, Falu Phalu acknowledges his own key role striving to carry on these powerful legacies by creating a distinct style to hopefully touch lives.

Falu Phalu will be performing at ATVA Center, Houston, Texas 05/29/2011 @ 6pm-9.pm. For more information email: dreamweaversentertainment@yahoo.com

Share Your Thoughts for the Day – Comfort Zone

~ Vincent Brown Sr.

I used to have a comfort zone
where I knew I wouldn’t fail.
The same four walls and busywork
were really more like jail.

I longed so much to do the things I’d never done before,
But stayed inside my comfort zone and paced the same old floor.

I said it didn’t matter that I wasn’t doing much.
I said I didn’t care for things like commission checks and such.
I claimed to be so busy with the things inside the zone,
But deep inside I longed for something special of my own.

I couldn’t let my life go by just watching others win.
I held my breath; I stepped outside and let the change begin.
I took a step and with new strength I’d never felt before,
I kissed my comfort zone goodbye and closed and locked the door.

If you’re in a comfort zone,
afraid to venture out,
Remember that all winners were at one time filled with doubt.
A step or two and words of praise can make your dreams come true.

Reach for your future with a smile; success is there for you!

Share Your Thoughts of The Day – Promise Yourself

~ Vincent Brown Jr.

Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person you meet.
To make all your friends feel like there is something in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.
To think only of the best, to work only for the best, and expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as you are about your own.
To forget the mistakes of the past and press on the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living person you meet a smile.
To give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, and too strong for fear, and to happy to permit the presence of trouble.

Share Your Thoughts of the Day – Opportunity

~ Vincent Brown Sr.

Opportunity

With doubt and dismay you are smitten
You think there’s no chance for you, son?
Why, the best books haven’t been written
The best race hasn’t been run

The best score hasn’t been made yet,
The best song hasn’t been sung,
The best tune hasn’t been played yet,
Cheer up, for the world is young!

No chance? Why the world is just eager
For things that you ought to create.
It’s store of true wealth is still meager
It’s needs are incessant and great

It yearns for more power and beauty
More laughter and love and romance,
More loyalty, labor and duty,
No chance–why there’s nothing but chance!

For the best verse hasn’t been rhymed yet,
The best house hasn’t been planned,
The highest peak hasn’t been climbed yet,
The mightiest rivers aren’t spanned

Don’t worry and fret, faint hearted,
The chances have just begun,
For the Best jobs haven’t been started,
The best work hasn’t been done.

Press Release -Atlanta Hosts Prof. Attahiru Jega, Chairman of INEC, Nigeria

~ Titus O. Olowokere
President, Alliance of Nigerian Organizations in Georgia

Alliance of Nigerian Organizations in Georgia (ANOG) host Professor Attahiru Jega

The Nigerian Community in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, under the auspices of the Alliance of Nigerian Organizations in Georgia (ANOG) gave a rousing reception to The Honorable Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Nigeria, Professor Attahiru Jega last weekend in Atlanta, GA.  Prof. Jega delivered the keynote address at the International Symposium on Managing Conflicts in Africa’s Democratic Transitions organized by the  Center for Conflict Management at Kennesaw State University, Georgia, USA.

In his speech, Prof. Jega described the recently concluded elections in Nigeria, as a product of hard work, careful planning, political maturity of the electorate as well as the determination of Nigerians for sustainability of Democracy in Nigeria. While acknowledging the international community’s reference to the recently concluded elections as the freest, fair and most transparent elections in the history of the country, he conceded that the electoral process was not yet at a perfect state. Lessons learned from these elections have been gathered, and will help improve the dynamics of the next elections.

In response to questions from the audience, he confirmed that Nigerians in Diaspora could not have participated in the last election, due to time constraints and daunting logistics to put the infrastructure in place at that time. However, the Commission will be working towards making this a reality in future elections, to ensure that all Nigerians are able to exercise their civic responsibility with a sense of belonging and dignity. He admitted,  in response to another, that the Commission anticipated and prepared to curtail violence on the election days at electoral booths and collation centers, but did not anticipate any post-election violence, as occurred in sporadic spots.

The acting Consul General at the Nigerian Consulate Office, Atlanta, Hon. Baba Garba, welcomed the INEC Chairman and praised him for his service to the Nation.

Earlier on, the President of the Nigerian Community in Georgia (ANOG), Engr. Titus Olowokere, in his address, commended the INEC Chairman for restoring confidence in the Nigerian electoral process, for restoring hope in Nigerians in Diaspora, for not ‘selling’ our votes, for making the votes count and for laying a good legacy for future electoral process in Nigeria.

The Nigerian community in Georgia made a presentation to Prof. Attahiru Jega in appreciation of his services to the Community. Other dignitaries that attended the one-day symposium include Prof. Akanmu Adebayo, Interim Director, Center for Conflict Management, KSU, Prof. Joseph Igietseme of CDC, Ms. Ilona Tip (Acting Director, Electoral Institute for the Sustainability of Democracy in Africa (EISA)

Johannesburg, South Africa), Prof. Ike Okosun of Georgia State University, Prof. Martin Okafor, Dr. Ezekiel Macham, President of Zumunta Organization and Mr. Wole Adewoyin, President of Obafemi Awolowo Alumni Association Alumni Association, USA.

The Alliance of Nigerian Organizations in Georgia (ANOG) is the apex organization of Nigerians in Georgia, helping Nigerians in Georgia build a positive image of their country, and representing the single, unified voice of all non-profit Nigerian associations in Georgia, USA, across community, tribal, ethnic, educational, social, political and economic lines.

ANOG is the collective effort to have an inclusive Nigerian community in Georgia, add value to community relationships, foster unity and encourage peaceful, collaborative, mutually supportive co-existence among Nigerians resident in Georgia.

~ Titus O. Olowokere
President, Alliance of Nigerian Organizations in Georgia

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Eye Problems and Diabetes

cataract

SOURCES:
American Diabetes Association: “Eye Disease.”  American Diabetes Association: “Mental Heatlh Problem Linked to Diabetes.” Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: “Take Charge of Your Diabetes.” Colucciello, M. Arch Ophthalmol 2005; 123:1273. Hernandez, C. Diabetes Care, 2006; 29:2028.

If you have diabetes, regular visits to your ophthalmologist for eye exams are important to avoid eye problems. High blood sugar (glucose) increases the risk of diabetes eye problems. In fact, diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adults age 20 to 74.

If you have eye problems and diabetes, don’t buy a new pair of glasses as soon as you notice you have blurred vision. It could just be a temporary eye problem that develops rapidly with diabetes and is caused by high blood sugar levels.

High blood sugar in diabetes causes the lens of the eye to swell, which changes your ability to see. To correct this kind of eye problem, you need to get your blood sugar back into the target range (90-130 milligrams per deciliter or mg/dL before meals, and less than 180 mg/dL one to two hours after a meal). It may take as long as three months after your blood sugar is well controlled for your vision to fully get back to normal.

Blurred vision can also be a symptom of more serious eye problem with diabetes. The three major eye problems that people with diabetes may develop and should be aware of are cataracts, glaucoma, and retinopathy.

 

Cataracts and Diabetes

A cataract is a clouding or fogging of the normally clear lens of the eye. The lens is what allows us to see and focus on an image just like a camera. Although anyone can get cataracts, people with diabetes get these eye problems at an earlier age than most and the condition progresses more rapidly than in people without diabetes.

If you have a cataract with diabetes, your eye cannot focus light and your vision is impaired. Symptoms of this eye problem in diabetes include blurred or glared vision.

Treatment is usually surgery followed by placement of a lens implant, with glasses or contact lenses as needed to further correct vision.

Glaucoma and Diabetes

When fluid inside the eye does not drain properly from a buildup of pressure inside the eye, it results in another eye problem with diabetes called glaucoma. The pressure damages nerves and the vessels in the eye, causing changes in vision.

In the most common form of glaucoma, there may be no symptoms of this eye problem at all until the disease is very advanced and there is significant vision loss. In the less common form of this eye problem, symptoms can include headaches, eye aches or pain, blurred vision, watering eyes, halos around lights, and loss of vision.

Treatment of this eye problem in diabetes can include special eye drops, laser procedures, medicine, or surgery. You can prevent serious eye problems in diabetes problems by getting an annual glaucoma screening from your eye doctor.

retinopathyLarge

Diabetic Retinopathy

The retina is a group of specialized cells that convert light as it enters though the lens into images. The eye nerve or optic nerve transmits visual information to the brain.

Diabetic retinopathy is one of the vascular (blood-vessel related) complications related to diabetes. This diabetes eye problem is due to damage of small vessels and is called a “microvascular complication.” Kidney disease and nerve damage due to diabetes are also microvascular complications. Large blood vessel damage (also called macrovascular complications) includes complications like heart disease and stroke.

The microvascular complications have, in numerous studies, been shown to be related to high blood sugar levels. You can reduce your risk of these eye problems in diabetes complications by improving your blood sugar control.

Diabetic retinopathy is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in industrialized nations. The duration of diabetes is the single most important risk for developing retinopathy. So the longer you have diabetes, the greater the risk of this very serious eye problem. If retinopathy is not found early or is not treated, it can lead to blindness.

People with type 1 diabetes rarely develop retinopathy before puberty. In adults with type 1 diabetes, it is also rare to see retinopathy before five years’ duration of diabetes. The risks of retinal damage increase with progressive duration of diabetes. Intensive control of blood sugar levels will reduce your risks of developing retinopathy. The DCCT, a large study of people with type 1 diabetes showed that people with diabetes who achieved tight control of their blood sugars with either an insulin pump or multiple daily injections of insulin were 50%-75% less likely to develop retinopathy, nephropathy (kidney disease), or nerve damage (all microvascular complications).

People with type 2 diabetes usually have signs of eye problems when diabetes is diagnosed. In this case, control of blood sugar, blood pressure, and blood cholesterol with diabetes have an important role in slowing the progression of retinopathy and other eye problems.

Types of Retinopathy in Diabetes:

  • Background retinopathy. Sometimes the blood vessel damage exists, but there is no vision problem. This is called background retinopathy. It’s important to carefully manage your diabetes at this stage to prevent background retinopathy from progressing to more serious eye disease.
  • Maculopathy. In maculopathy, the person has developed damage in a critical area called the macula. Because this occurs in an area that is critical to vision, this type of eye problem can significantly reduce vision.
  • Proliferative retinopathy. New blood vessels start to grow in the back of the eye. Because retinopathy is a microvascular complication of diabetes, a disease of small vessels, this type of retinopathy develops because of an increasing lack of oxygen to the eye from vascular disease. Vessels in the eye are thinned and occluded and they start to remodel.

Here, it is important to address the risks factors that can worsen the occluded vessels. Smoking cessation, high blood pressure control, cholesterol management, and blood sugar control must take place in order to stop the progression of new vessels from forming into the orbit of the eye. These are fragile vessels that can bleed and eventually cause a clot to form in the orbit, which scars and causes detachment of the retina. This eventually leads to irreversible vision loss.

Treatment of diabetic retinopathy may involve laser procedures or surgery. In a study of people with diabetes with early retinopathy, laser therapy to burn the fragile vessel resulted in a 50% reduction of blindness.

To prevent retinopathy with diabetes, have your eye doctor screen your eyes annually. Women with diabetes who later become pregnant should have a comprehensive eye exam during the first trimester and close follow-up with an eye doctor during the rest of their pregnancy to avoid serious eye problems with diabetes. (This recommendation does not apply to women who develop gestational diabetes, since they are not at risk for retinopathy.)

Preventing Eye Problems With Diabetes

The American Diabetes Association offers these eye care guidelines for people with diabetes to help prevent eye problems:

  • People with type 1 diabetes should have a dilated eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist within three to five years after diagnosis.
  • People with type 2 diabetes should have a dilated eye exam by an ophthalmologist or optometrist shortly after diagnosis.
  • Annual eye exams should be done with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes by an ophthalmologist or optometrist; more frequently if necessary.
  • When considering pregnancy, women with a history of diabetes should have an eye exam prior and during pregnancy. This does not pertain to women with gestational diabetes.

To prevent eye problems in diabetes, you should:

  • Control your blood sugar
  • Control high blood pressure

When to Contact Your Doctor About Eye Problems in Diabetes

If you have diabetes, contact your doctor about any eye problems in if any of the following occur:

  • Black spots in your vision.
  • Flashes of light.
  • “Holes” in your vision.
  • Blurred vision.

Understanding Arthritis – Symptoms

What Are the Symptoms of Arthritis?

SOURCES: American College of Rheumatology. DePuy Orthapaedics. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Arthritis Foundation. Markkula Center for Applied Ethics, Santa Clara University. Arthritis-forum.net. National Institutes of Health. The Center for Current Research. National Internet Health. Alternative Medicine Foundation.

Reviewed by

Marc C. Levesque, MD, PhD on February 25, 2010

Joint pain and progressive stiffness without noticeable swelling, chills, or fever during normal activities probably indicates the gradual onset of osteoarthritis.

Painful swelling, inflammation, and stiffness in the fingers, arms, legs, and wrists occurring in the same joints on both sides of the body, especially on awakening, may be signs of rheumatoid arthritis.

Fever, joint inflammation, tenderness, and sharp pain, sometimes accompanied by chills and associated with an injury or another illness, may indicate infectious arthritis.

In children, intermittent fever, loss of appetite, weight loss, and anemia, or blotchy rash on the arms and legs may signal the onset of some types of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Other forms of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis are associated with joint stiffness, a limp, or joint swelling.

Call Your Doctor About Arthritis If:

  • The pain and stiffness come on quickly, whether from an injury or an unknown cause; you may be experiencing the onset of rheumatoid arthritis.
  • The pain is accompanied by fever; you may have infectious arthritis.
  • The pain develops quickly and is associated with redness and extreme tenderness of the joint; this may be the onset of gout.
  • You notice pain and stiffness in your arms, legs, or back after sitting for short periods or after a night’s sleep; you may be developing osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, or another arthritic condition.
  • A child develops pain or a rash on armpits, knees, wrists, and ankles, or has fever swings, poor appetite, and weight loss; the child may have juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.

Foods For A Healthy Heart

Saturated fats have been shown to raise blood cholesterol levels into the danger zone. Just as important is what you should be eating. For heart health and longevity, you should eat:

Plenty of fruits and vegetables: Plant-based foods are abundant in fiber and many vitamins and minerals. Packed with nutrients, they’re also relatively low in calories. Studies consistently show that diets plentiful in fruits and vegetables help people maintain a healthy weight and protect against cardiovascular disease.

Whole grains: Like fruits and vegetables, whole grains pack a lot of nutrition into a low-calorie package. Grains like oats and barley are also rich in a long list of disease-fighting compounds.

Nuts: For too long, nuts were banished from the list of healthy foods because they’re high in fat. They are. But the fat they contain is mostly unsaturated, which protects against heart disease.

Dark chocolate: Dark chocolate? That’s right. Researchers now think that high blood pressure and heart disease are exceedingly rare among residents of the San Blas islands because they eat chocolate, and lots of it. Components in dark chocolate called polyphenols are believed to lower blood pressure and improve the flexibility of blood vessels.

A Teaspoonful of Vinegar

Most people suffer from high blood pressure, an suncontrollable high blood pressure  can result to kidney failure. In cases where your blood pressure spirals out control, a teaspoonful of vinegar may help stabilize your high blood pressure, but you’ll need to consult your physician.

© 2010 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Sensational DJ OUDY 1er Brings It On

DJ Oudy 1er, one of Decale’s hottest artists continues to fill up dance floors across the US. The West Africa Guinea born moved to France at a young age in order to pursue his love for music. From the beginning, Dj Oudy captured the attention of his audience, filled with people yearning for the beat of Africa. He lead coupe decale movements such as “the black and white”. A captivating performer, he is the pioneer of coupe decale’s popular “the black and white” move. He has sold out shows in France, Italy, London and parts of Africa and is touring the United States with special performances of some of his biggest hits. He kickoff of his Official United States Tour at the African Vibes Magazine 5th Anniversary celebration award on 05/01/2011.

Dj Oudy 1er although aclaimed in Europe, always made sure to travel to Africa. He travelled to Guinea, Cote D’ivoire and many other countries in order to not only share his music but also his experience. DJ Oudy first called ‘The Model of DJ’s’ for his style of dress is always fashionable without doubt. He completed his new album “Kill to Kill ‘in collaboration with DJ Lewis, Philip Bebi, Serge Beno, DJ Gesco, Pat Sexy DJ 5 Stars Vetcho Lolas, David Tayorault etc to create a new concept Tchoumakaya, which was quickly adopted a few months after its release Tchoumakaya was number 1 in Africa hit Trace. His new single “tchoumakaya” is a hit both in Africa and Europe. Dj Oudy 1er is currently on tour all over America.

The Nigerian Promoters Association prepares for the 2nd Annual Summit & Awards Gala in Atlanta,Georgia

http://www.npa-usa.com

The Nigerian Promoters Association (USA), is set to polish the Nigerian Arts and Entertainment Business in the United States of America and in the diaspora. You will recall that undoubtedly, a message of hope for change had already been established upon a successful NPA Launch and it’s 1st Annual Summit held in Houston TX on October 9th, 2010.

NPA  2ND ANNUAL SUMMIT

The Annual summit is an annual meeting of Entertainment Administrators such as; promoters, music producers, event planners, record label companies, Artiste managers, DEEJAYS, Entertainment media personalities, film producers, fashion designers, Arts, sports est. coming together to meet and deliberate thoroughly on how to better improve the standard of  the Nigerian  Arts and Entertainment industry as a one point agenda by the year 2015. In addition, it should be categorically noted therefore, that the Nigerian promoters Association is not politically oriented and will not give room to be politically influenced by any Nigerian politician or political party as the case may be.

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT BUSINESS AWARDS

The NPA 2011 Awards is planned to be bigger and better holding in Atlanta Georgia on SEPTEMBER 3RD respectively. The Arts and Entertainment  Business Awards is to recognize, to celebrate and to further promote the Nigerian entertainment practitioners  based in the United States of America.  This way more talents will be discovered because of the competition it will definitely create. While the already discovered talents will also have reasons to do better and remain relevant in the industry.

This award ceremony will award thirty-two (32) winners with thirty-two (32) awards each under thirty-two (32) competitive categories including three(3) international awards, the progressive image Award of Nigerian public office and eight (8) Honorary awards. Bringing the total number of awards to recipients to forty (40).

NOMINEES:

Nominations are based on  the available active entertainment person(s) with current material works, such as; Music and Film on; CD, DVD, including Media. Categories consists of two (2) to ten (10) nominees that are selected for each category respectively.

VOTING:

For transparency, an online voting is embed on the NPA website where fans can  cast their votes for their various nominees under various categories of the award and also view the entire result of the voting and who the winner is right away. Voting commences April 20-July 20,2011.

BUSINESS VISION

To preserve Nigerian cultural heritage by providing a space for Nigerian Business,  Art and Entertainment to exhibit and promote various works to both locals and Nigerians in the United States of America, thus broadening market base and defining new markets for products, creative arts and business networking.

– Open more business opportunity to business owners in Nigeria that are out for partnership with investors in the United States of America.

– A platform to show case Nigeria’’s beautiful multi cultural diversity to the world at large.

For more info on NPA,visit http://www.npa-usa.com/