Paint It Black






Have you ever had a dinner where the food is really great, the ambiance is dope but the company in which you keep perhaps maybe not as much so? Sure not every outing I've ever been on has gone swell. But sometimes, the people I have to converse with (not saying many but there are a few...) makes me want to scratch my eyes out. And there are all kinds of factors to set in as well. First, do you have something interesting to talk about other than Instagram algorithms or how vapid the world has become, you included? Or are we going to go around the exact typical merry-go-round of shooting the breeze? Am I one not to give a younger person a chance to talk to simply because they don't fall into the same age category as me? Hell, no! In fact, I've gotten very close to a much younger gal who is like my kid sister. She is half my age, but wise beyond her years. Age is yet again nothing but a number. To me, it's all about emotional maturity. I have no trouble relating with an 80-year-old just as much as with a 17-year-old; so long as you're not a complete baboon with nothing to offer me except wasted time. No, I'm not saying no one has anything to offer because we all do. But what really counts is what you do with it and your time while you're here. And nothing irks me more than wasted time. Because you'll never get it back. Tell me a story, share with me your ideas, beliefs, and passions. Secondly, do you know that saying, where it goes something along the lines of being kind to everyone you meet because you never know what kind of battle they're fighting? Seems fair, right? Trust me as I live and breathe it, there are a lot of people who are not kind at all. And if you cross me or do something that's not in the 'kindness' category to me or someone I love? You're going to see the Detroit-side in me that most people never see. And it ain't a pretty sight. 

I grew up right smack dab in the middle of Detroit. No, not Bloomfield Hills or Birmingham, not even Troy or Livonia. And my childhood was quite difficult. My parents fought like cats & dogs, and the I grew up always either being afraid or anxious. My father was concerned for me while raising me in Detroit. For one, I'm Asian (where there was literally a total of three Asian families within our entire community) and being petite, my physical attributes had a tendency to put me in vulnerable positions. I was bullied and ostracized until I left for college. And so, even at a very young age, my father taught me how to fight, both physically and mentally. A boxer in his early -teens, he may have instilled too much fight in me. Some of my closest friends have confessed to me that I can come across intimidating, carrying a full-blown "don't f*&k with me" attitude, even up to the point of looking like Lucy Liu's RBF. Which hey, this I won't take as a bad thing... ;)

Which I guess can be one of the reasons why people may find it hard to approach me, but I promise you this - I do not bite... HARD. Ha ha ha! All kidding aside, I'm not going to say I'm the easiest person in the world to deal with. So what is this Detroit thing I speak of? Well, it's amongst a number of things - pride, frankness, and grit. It's all about fighting for what you want in life and standing up for yourself and being fearless with the power of your own voice. I know where I come from and I know who I am, and once people do get to know me, I'd like to think they don't see me as half-bad. What gets me into trouble though is my curiosity and the disappointments people bring because I'm so hard on everyone, including myself. During the dinner I mentioned, in the beginning of this post, I had brought up the question to several bloggers/influences (whatever the heck we're labeled these days LOL) on why they had begun their Instagram in the first place since this is where most of us began as we fine-tuned our blogs simultaneously. The answers were shocking. One stressed validation, another money, and the typical answer - to connect with others. Okay, two of the three I can slightly understand. I too, use Instagram as a platform to connect and make a living, but my sole reason is to attempt to make an impact on other's lives with my creativity and words.  I want nothing more than to get you to think and feel; to be inspired. To let you know you're not alone, that others are fighting just as hard as you are and that we're in this together. We will carry on because there is no other way. Because we have to.

Perhaps I don't relate to those who come from money and never had to work a day in their whole life, even though they sleazily act as if they do (eyes rolling, you ain't fooling anyone sweetheart!) don't tell me you earned everything on your own when we both know mommy and daddy still take care of you and your bills. I've been working since I was 12 years old and everything I have achieved so far in my life was honest hard-work. I give my blood, sweat, and tears when it comes to my creative outlets. I also do it for no one but myself. Seeking validation on a social media platform is NOT work, I REPEAT, NOT WORK! And stop complaining about your engagement rate not being high enough when you're not willing to put in the time and effort of displaying high-quality content, remaining consistent while maintaining some sort of discipline in this cut-throat, competitive industry. Sure an iPhone shot suffices from time to time, but if you're really trying to grow and aspire to be more than just basic #sorrynotsorry then I strongly suggest thinking outside the box, but especially reconsidering your strategy when it comes to quality over quantity. People will get sick and tired of just seeing you and your 'outfits'. Give me something MORE, dammit! Mic drop, I'm out.





Celebrating 2,500+ Followers!

That's right! You've heard it here first folks- my German Shepherd, maQ has over 2,500 followers on Instagram! Never seen his feed? We got tons of portraits, goofy bloopers & videos, and all those heart-warming, fuzzy and glorious moments for any dog lover! You can check us out @maq_life over on IG!

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This deserves a celebration! Seriously though, I can't thank each and every one of you enough for all your love and support. It is so amazing getting to know some of you. I've even met a few of our fellow Instagram followers in person and am so delighted in the idea of making new friends via social media. We literally have friends from all around the globe! From South Africa to Australia, to NJ and Cali, we have sheppy friends everywhere we go! In honor of our followers, I wanted to make something special for my fur baby.

maQ is a life-size wolf and horks down dog biscuits like it's his job. Since I spend so much money on trying a variety of dog treats, and not knowing what ingredients are really going into my poochie's delicate belly, after awhile I figured why not make my own? I can make them by the bulk and for way less than the prices at any retail store. Plus, I know exactly what kind of ingredients I'm using and they're truly healthy for maQ! You know what really made my day? These cookie cutters from Sur La Table. I went down to Soho in search of a dog bone-shaped cutter along with something a little more unique and creative. Lo and behold they had GERMAN SHEPHERD DOG cookie cutters! I literally gasped while in the store when I discovered them! I I searched deep in every nook and cranny before finding it. Luckily, I got the last one! It was totally satisfying, ha ha! No surprise they're popular... check out how freaking adorable they are! I wish I could send these cookies to all my furriends! I did get a chance to share a few with some of maQ's doggy buddies and they too loved the heck outta em'!

Since I've never made dog treats before, I'm using a recipe from This was a huge success, to say at the very least! Thank you for sharing this with us!


Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats

Prep Time 25 minutes

Cook Time 25 minutes

Total Time 50 minutes

The easiest homemade dog treats ever - simply mix, roll and cut. Easy peasy, and so much healthier than store-bought!


  • 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 cups whole wheat flour, or more, as needed


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat; set aside.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat pumpkin puree, peanut butter and eggs on medium-high until well combined, about 1-2 minutes. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups flour at low speed, beating just until incorporated. Add an additional 1/4 cup flour at a time just until the dough is no longer sticky.
  • Working on a lightly floured surface, knead the dough 3-4 times until it comes together. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using cookie cutters, cut out desired shapes and place onto the prepared baking sheet.
  • Place into oven and bake until the edges are golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.*
  • Let cool completely.


*Baking time will vary depending on the size and thickness of the treats. Serving size will also vary depending on the desired shapes and cookie cutters used.

Adapted from use real butter

maQ clearly enjoying his treat! :)

maQ clearly enjoying his treat! :)

Please like, share and comment below! If you've got a snazzy dog treat recipe, we'd love to hear from you!

Wishing you all a lovely Thursday, friends!

Love & xx's,

maQ + suz