Join me in my daily walk through the joys and struggles of parenthood. Share a word of encouragement or be encouraged. Cry a little, laugh a lot, but know it is all in divine order.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Words of Wisdom - 5 Quotes to inspire success

Photo Credit: Fulfilling Happiness

"Stop chasing the money and start chasing the passion."  Tony Hsieh

"All our dreams can come true if we have the courage to pursue them." Walt Disney

"Opportunities don't happen, you create them." Chris Grosser

"All progress takes place outside the comfort zone." Michael John Bobak

"What would you attempt to do if you knew you would not fail." Robert Schuller

Monday, March 26, 2018

Motivational Monday – Planning with a Twist

Women gathered in clusters in the living room, dining room and kitchen, chatting and laughing. Some knew each other, some met for the first time. All were there hungry to learn tools and strategies for organizing our lives. We were in the home of Kimika Garrett and Planning with a Twist was underway.

With our stomachs full and our minds open, we were ready to absorb information. What is Planning with a Twist? It resembles Painting with a Twist. There’s food, beverages and fun. In our case, the “twist” included goal setting and personal strategic planning.

This event was the brain child of Kimika - one woman with a dream and passion to reach her goals while helping others reach theirs. The energy was high in the retreat style setting. A series of power point slides guided us in creating our bucket list, identifying our super power and creating SMART goals (Specific Meaningful, Action Oriented, Realistic, Timely).

Write the vision and make it plain. This biblical scripture was incorporated into our planning. “What is your vision?” our facilitator asked. It was amazing to hear the sharing of dreams. One woman plans to start a travel agency, another has a catering business and yet another does tax preparation.

In just two hours of brainstorming and sharing information we planted seeds of prosperity, encouragement and a renewed motivation. As the evening ended, I felt a sense of accomplishment and a new fire burning under my dreams. We said our goodbyes with promises to return next quarter with updates on our accomplishments.

The chatter and laughter subsided as we walked to our cars with our stomachs and minds filled, and our hearts warmed. Planning with a Twist was a success.

What plans do you have for your life?

“If you can believe it, the mind can achieve it.” Ronnie Lott

Friday, March 23, 2018

Fun Friday – Ritz crackers and a life lesson

One lone Ritz Cracker left from lunch

I stood staring at the items on the shelf of my kitchen pantry – plastic utensils, paper cups, cereal, breakfast bars and crackers. Where was the real food, something I could take for lunch? I grabbed a half sleeve of Ritz crackers and tossed them into my lunch bag for the next day, along with a can of soup. It was time to go grocery shopping.

The buttery flavor of a Ritz cracker is always satisfyingly delicious. I have to place a limit on the amount I demolish in one sitting. The next morning as I prepared to grab my lunch bag, I noticed my half sleeve of crackers were replaced with a whole sleeve. “Noooo, I can’t take this many crackers with me. I will eat the whole thing.” No one was in ear shop of my wail.

My son had eaten the crackers I packed and replaced them with a larger pack. There has always been a struggle for me to exercise portion control with Ritz Crackers. Nabisco nailed that recipe. Ordinarily I would not have a large quantity of the delectable delights on hand, but I’d just had a gathering where I supplied snacks.

Once I finished my lunch I texted my son and said, “You sabotaged my lunch. I had my portion size set.”

His response was, “Nooo Ma, lol you weren’t supposed to eat all of them.”
He obviously did not know my battle with crunchy, cracker of choice. His next text message to me was a dissertation of sorts. It said…

“As adults we learn and teach ourselves new things every day and become more wise as life goes on. In this situation self-discipline was the topic and you had to teach that to yourself and learn as you go.”

The statement was followed by a winking emoji with a heart.
I said, “Lmbo (laughing my butt off) Professor V., your grammar and sentence structure are off, but I get your point.”

My young adult son reminded me to exercise self-discipline with my food choices. It’s amazing when our children switch roles with us an unexpected lesson. Sometime I wonder whether something was misunderstood when I said I wanted my kids to be smart. Not smartaleck.

What life lessons have you learned from your child?

Friday, March 16, 2018

Feel Good Friday – Women’s History Month – Who’s your Shero?

Coach Adrienne (center)

In recognition of Women’s History Month, Brawny (paper towel), teamed up with girls inc. They developed a platform to encourage us to recognize strong, courageous women this month. You can share the story of your shero at Brawny’s website.

You can also share your story today at my blog. Leave a comment and tell us a little about your shero. Here’s my story for today.

It’s 5:30am, cars into pull into the parking in front of A-Train’s SuperFit (women's gym). The lights come on and a group of dedicated women stroll through the door with exercise mats. The owner, Coach Adrienne, has her hair pulled back and gym shoes laced, ready shape and sculpt our bodies.

Nuzzled in jackets and hoodies, we struggle with letting go of the warmth of our outerwear. Adrienne lovingly guides us, “Let’s get started ladies, you’ll warm up quickly.” She delivers on her promise. Planks, Mountain Climbers, Burpees, in no time at all, we’re pulling off as many clothes as we can in a public setting.

From one end of the studio I hear a friend shout, “We got this ladies. Summer bodies are made in the winter.” The ladies keep going, one kettle bell swing, plank jack, or jackknife sit-up at a time. Everyone is at different levels in their fitness journey. Adrienne tells us, “Don’t worry about what your neighbor is doing, do what you can do, but challenge yourself.”

Every day at A-Train SuperFit is a different workout. There are challenges introduced periodically so that one is not bored with routine; Build your strength and core muscles with Burpee and Plank challenges. And on your birthday…the workout is tailored around your favorite exercises.

We end our workout session chanting, “Fat, fat, go away, don’t come back another day!” As we prepare to leave and start our work day, ladies can be heard saying, “She killed us today.” Then they say, “You’ll be here tomorrow, right?” “Yep.” We walk out the door as another group of ladies enter.

Coach Adrienne teaches a second class, goes to work full-time and returns in the evening. She adds variety to our workouts, offers nutrition coaching, AND she has a family who needs her attention. Coach A-Train finds balance. I believe she fits this quote…

“You can get anything you want if you help enough other people get what they want.” Zig Ziglar

Coach Adrienne, you are my Shero for Women’s History Month. Keep doing "you", and everything else will fall into place.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Wordless Wednesday - Women's History Month

Who are the women in your life and what is their history?

Grandmother - once the family matriarch: school teacher, basketball player, community volunteer, represented her church in a queen contest. Still with us in our hearts.


Met at a fitness gym and a friendship blossomed.

My boss

5k Race with Ms. Black Fit and Fine Pageant contestants

Church friends - always ready for a photo opportunity

College Roommate, reconnected at a conference in another state - Six of us shared a house one year

Bestie -friends since high school

Toastmasters Group

Fitness Journey

Celebrate the women in your life.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Muffins with Mom – 3 Benefits of water

photo credit: Google Image

Water is essential to daily living. Humans need water, animals need water and plants need water. Did you know that water is essential to your hair as well? I did a little research after a discussion with my twenty something year-old niece. She was coaching me with a natural hairstyle that I’m working to achieve.

After parting my hair in sections and spraying it with water, my niece meticulously twisted my hair. She coached as she twisted. “Auntie, you have to train your hair in order to get your natural curl pattern. You need water to moisturize your hair.”

My niece wanted to make sure I understood the significance of what she was explaining. She put it in perspective for me. “Think of your hair as a plant. Plants need moisture, water to grow.”

“Plants don’t survive in my care,” I said. She would need to come up with a different analogy, to give me hope that I could achieve success with “watering” my hair. A Google search revealed that “water is the most natural setting lotion for hair.” Below are 3 additional benefits of water…

1.      Tighten face skin
2.      Fastest way to lose belly fat
3.      Best hair growth vitamin

The next time you reach for a glass of water, remember there are many benefits of water. In addition to being essential to our daily living, water has benefits related to our skin, hair and weight loss.

What other benefits of water, would you add?

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Friday, March 2, 2018

Fun Friday – Do you see what I see? Taking care of your eyes

photo credit: Amcon Labs

Have you ever had your eyes dilated? Once the process is complete the doctor sends you home with sunshades and tells you “be careful.” My mom did not follow directions. On the drive home, the sun was blinding, but the shades were helpful.

Mom did not drive straight home, she stopped at a convenience store for a cup of coffee. Distorted vision did not stop her from filling her coffee cup and adding the desired cream and sweetener. After making the purchase, mom sat in her car typing a text message.

A few moments passed and a tall grey-haired woman wearing sunglasses, grabbed mom’s car door and pulled it open. My mother screamed…the woman screamed. The woman spoke broken English “I sorry, I thought it was my car. Color look alike.” Her grey car was parked next to mom’s white car.

It would appear that both my mother and the friendly stranger had their eyes dilated that day. And both needed to pay attention to their surroundings.

Just when you think you are the only one who can’t see…you’re not alone. Take care of your eyes. Follow the doctor’s orders if he/she tells you to do something. Be careful.