The Real Lei

Written by Jennifer Jones and Jordane Frazier

(According to Jennifer)


Lei in a nutshell…

1.       Most people know that Leilani is a fashionista extraordinaire and the world’s greatest food snob. What most do not know is that Leilani’s creativity spills into the dance realm as well. Where she, in fact, has danced for 10+ plus years. The extremely talented Leilani has performed on many renowned stages across the Chicago area. For four years, she attended a performing arts high school where she toured with her dance company and where she partook in master dance classes from renowned choreographers.

2.       As loved as Leilani is by most, people do not always understand her need to be ALONE. She thrives off the time she gets away from people and she will recharge fully by putting on “one man” shows by her lonesome. She will stay in the mirror, in her bathroom (which is also her favorite place), and sing, dance, even talk to herself lol to create. I’m sure it’s in that solace that she has birthed her greatest ideas.

3.       Miss Howell also enjoys the holidays and celebrations. This has turned her into the master planner she is today. She is festive in every sense of the word and enjoys planning to entertain others. She enjoys the time to celebrate life, laughter, love, and relationships. Leilani’s favorite holiday is New Year's Eve, which is fitting because it’s the ultimate and most opportune time designated for celebrations. She really has mastered the art of this and her blog is nothing compared to her Pinterest boards that are hidden from the world.

4.       Want a way to scare Lei?? Put on IT in a dark room and fill the room with clowns. She will probably hate you, but it will by far be the best reaction ever!! She has had this fear of clowns since we met many moons ago and I still find it enjoyable to startle her every now and then!

5.       Leilani is the bubble girl! Or for better words, she needs to be bubble girl. My dear friend is allergic to almost everything. She has battled skin issues and allergies for years yet she still manages to gracefully and stylishly slay despite her obstacles. Just please don’t offer my friend any scented products, peanuts, pills, or strange air!!

(According to Jordane)

Saying you’ve had the same best friends for 20+ years is a mouthful! We’ve been through love, hate, joy, sadness, puberty lol and even thousands of miles of separation and we’re still the three best friends that anyone could have! Our friendship has helped us develope a magical connection unlike any we share with others – which means more laugher, love and amazing memories!

We Got a 20-Piece!

Man, 20 years is a lonnggg time! That’s how long I’ve been friends with Lei and I thank God for it every day. I’m not sure why He chose to bless me with such great friendship for all this time but I can definitely say he was showing out! Through everything that life has thrown at me I’ve had an amazing support system that believes in me, uplifts me and encourages me to be the very best I can be. Cheers to 20 more years!

She Said YES!

Making friends at any stage can be awkward but there’s an innocence in it when you’re just two kids looking for a bus partner! We were around 5-years-old when we first met at Rosenwald Specialty School on Chicago’s south side. To this day I’ve never been more forward with anyone and don’t know what possessed me to be so confident at the time, but I told myself, “hey, she looks cool – I want her to be my friend.” I plopped down next to her on the bus on our way to one of our many field trips during our summer bridge program and uttered seven magical words – “You want to be my best friend?” She said YES lol and the rest is history!

Wolf Pack

Have you ever had one of those Hangover Movie nights where you’re with your girls and you’re anticipating a nice CHILL night out on the town? Then things take a crazy turn and you end up walking down a busy street in the wee hours of the morning with cowboy boots and a homecoming dress on looking for a friend that disappeared at some point in the night? Well, we had one of those nights when Lei and Jenn invited me to their high school homecoming dance sophomore year! It was straight out of a movie - dangerous, funny, exciting and scary. I’ll spare you all the details. Lol Although it was one of the most up-and-down nights of my life to-date, it is one of my most fond and fun memories!

Don’t Touch my Hair

Yup, I was that friend. That “your hair would look so good straight,” friend. That “don’t you want your hair to blow in the wind?” friend. I experienced the wonder of a relaxer when I was around 11-years-old and I was the first of our group to have one! It didn’t take long for me to convince Lei that she absolutely HAD to have one, too and within a few months she had drenched her tresses in the creamy crack! I’ve given a lot of advice during our 20+ years as friends but this has to be the piece I’m least proud of. Needless to say, relaxer is bad news and who knows where her hair would be had I not begged her to get one – maybe butt-length? Sorry, Lei! Haha

Two-Straw Shawty

This might be more obvious but it’s one of Lei’s most mystifying qualities – her eating techniques! I don’t mean techniques as simple as having dessert before the main course or eating cold pizza. It gets weirder. Lol I remember as a kid watching her eat in amazement – like “how did she come up with that?!” Back in our elementary school days she would end our many trips to McDonald’s by pulling everything out her bag, dumping her fries into it and squeezing mounds of ketchup on top of them! Then she’d roll the bag up, shake it till it was nice and soggy, rip it open and go ham! I think around high school is when I started seeing the two-straw combo. RARELY does she enjoy a drink without two straws. And of course the straws double as a tooth pick after she’s cleared her plate. There’s so many other details that make eating with Lei more interesting than eating with anyone else!

It’s not always easy sharing our bestie with the world but someone as great, talented and wonderful as her shouldn’t be contained! There’s so much more we could share but we hope the little jewels we’ve dropped in this post have given you an inside look at how awesome “The Real Lei” is! We love you and pray that God blesses you with the happiest of birthdays this year and every year that follows.


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