A Message from Karyn

What makes a holiday reflection? For Sweet Blackberry, it's taking the moment to reflect on the amount of love and support our community has shared with us over the year and remaining continuously grateful for the milestones we've been able to reach and the ones that lie ahead. 

This month's newsletter isn't just about reflection. It highlights various ways to bring family and loved ones together for the holiday season whether it's creating holiday treats or going to see that movie everyone is talking about. 

As we approach the upcoming holidays and round out the year, we hope you all had an amazing 2018, and wish you the best in 2019.  

All the best,
Holiday Entertainment Guide

Need a fun activity to do at home this  holiday  season? Be sure to check out Sweet Blackberry's  Holiday  entertainment Guide filled with movies available to stream, DIY crafts and snack ideas. 

View the guide here
T h e  H i s t o r o f  K w a n z a a

Kwanzaa is an African-American  holiday for the week between December 26th and January 1st each year. 

Established in 1966 by Dr. Maulan Karenga, a professor of chairman and Black Studies at California State University, Long Beach, Kwanzaa was established to help African Americans remember their heritage by combining several different harvest celebrations such as those of the Ashanti and Zulu to form it's basis. 

Each day of Kwanzaa is dedicated to one of seven principles with the lighting of a candle providing family and friends with the opportunity to gather and discuss it's meaning. 

The Seven Principles are: 
  1. umoja - to maintain unity in the family and community
  2. kujichagulia - self-determination, to be responsible and speak for oneself
  3. ujima - collective work and responsibility, to build and maintain a community
  4. ujamaa - economic co-operation, to help and profit one another
  5. nia - purpose, to build and develop the community for the benefit of the people
  6. kuumba - creativity, to do everything possible to leave the community more beautiful and beneficial for future generations
  7. imani - faith, to believe in parents, teachers and leaders.
Read more about the history and celebration of Kwanzaa here

Movie To See: 
If Beale Street Could Talk 

Based on James Baldwin's novel of the same name, If Beale Street Could Talk is a movie we highly recommend you check out this holiday season. 

Nominated for multiple Golden Globe awards including Best Drama Film, Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress, this movie highlights racial injustices and importance of family support and love in trying times. 

This film began a limited release on December 14th and will have a scheduled expansion on Christmas Day. 
Coming in 2019
Flying Free: The Bessie Coleman Story

Sweet Blackberry has many things to look forward to in 2019, including the premiere of our latest animation, Flying Free: The Bessie Coleman Story. Our team has been hard at work putting together the finishing touches. Earlier this year, our narrator, Laurence Fishburne met up with us to record her story. 

We met with Bessie Coleman's great niece Gigi Coleman who gave an interview for our film at the Intrepid Museum in New York City! 

We flew to Los Angeles to meet with Kimberly Anyandike - the youngest Nigerian American to complete a transcontinental flight across the US at Tomorrow's Aeronautical Museum in Compton, CA. 

Our illustrator and animator R. Gregory Christie  and Katherine Bianca Clark shared a sneak peak of the animation to come. 

We are forever grateful for your continued patience and support. Stay tuned for an update on remaining items directly related to the animation's premiere and Bessie related items. 

What  We're R eading 
Book of The Month:
The Nutcracker in Harlem

In this original retelling, set in New York City during the height of the Harlem Renaissance, one little girl finds her voice as a musician thanks to her enchanting adventures with a magical toy.
This quintessential holiday tale is brought to vivid life by debut picture book author T. E. McMorrow and Coretta Scott King Award-winning illustrator James Ransome. An author's note at the end provides additional information about the history of the Harlem Renaissance, and about the author's inspiration for this musical retelling.

Find the book on Amazon Smile, here

Did you know that you can support Sweet Blackberry while knocking out your holiday shopping when you purchase items through  Amazon .com? 

AmazonSmile is Amazon's charity program that  donates a portion of the purchase to your favorite charity organization. That's right! This month, we are continuing to encourage you to register Sweet Blackberry as your charity of choice for simple charitable giving at the click of a button. 

Simply register here:  https://smile.amazon.com/ 
I am known as the Queen of Christmas
I wrote "Where Are You Christmas"
You can't get through the holiday season without hearing my Christmas hit once. 
Who am I? 
The answer to last month's trivia question was Senator Cory Booker. Tweet your answer to  @SwtBlackberry  for a shout out in next month's newsletter!