A Reflection of Who I Am

Archive for the ‘Lifestyle’ Category

Unpacking Memories – Introduction


July 3, 2015

We recently had to move from our home in a very short period. It was a difficult move because we had to downsize from a four-bedroom, eight room, full basement and garage home to a three-bedroom, six room home with an old fashion below ground cellar and no garage. I call our new home, “The Enchanted Cottage.”

When my family and I first visited our new home back in April, I fell in love with its simplicity and charm. Once we returned home to the house we were leaving, a feeling of dread overwhelmed me. “Where would all of our belongings go?” For the purpose of emotional calm, I began referring to the belongings as “stuff” to help me detach. After a month and a half of packing, which included packing up and moving my husband’s mother to live with her granddaughter, we are finally finished the dreaded move.

Sitting 38 miles to the north is the house I moved into August 3, 2008. My husband had already lived there for sixteen years. Now, almost seven years after our wedding day, I am sharing a home I feel is mine and ours. For those of you who have married a divorced or widowed individual, you will understand how I feel. The home I lived in was still the home of the departed spouse. In my case from the garage to the attic and each every room was planned, decorated and furnished by my husband’s late wife. When I moved in,  I was truly grateful for her great taste in decorating. Even to this day, I am thankful I did not have to take on that task.

Yet as the years moved on, I desired to have my personality represented in the home decor. This move has allowed me to experience that desire once again. Although I am currently up to the rafters in boxes. I am content in knowing, this is the home my husband and I will share for a season. It has become and will continue to be a peaceful sanctuary where we will have an opportunity to grow old(er) together.

This house has already given my step-daughter an opportunity to be a part of a family again. It is so small she cannot isolate herself; yet large enough to allow movement between her bedroom, the family room and the outside deck. For the first time, I am experiencing the roles I have always longed for. It has been a long and hard seven years…ten years if you include the years my husband and I dated before we married. I enjoy her quick business mind and the ease she grasps situations. As it is in life, our relationship is a dance; sometimes a two-step, at times the cha-cha, and others the tango. But, rarely the rumba. I’ve learned to gauge her moods and interact accordingly.

Now the unpacking begins…

50 Shades of Crap: a Feminist’s View


Plant Family Co.

Dear Film Goers and Readers Everywhere,

February 13, 2015 will mark an important moment in American cinema, one which is a deplorable moment for our country and our world.  In 1939, Gone with the Wind used the first swear word in a film, when Rhett Butler stuck it to Scarlett O’Hara, saying a well-deserved though sad “frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.”  While some might say that opened a door to the onslaught of immorality in films, I maintain that there’s a difference between that one word and the 554 times The Wolf of Wall Street f-bombed the world.  But back to the point, there’s something that’s even worse happening on Valentine’s Day this year.

50 Shades of Crap 50 Shades of Crap

Opening in theaters that day is 50 Shades of Grey, an erotic, pornographic film that has a disturbing story line accompanied by overt sexual exploitation. And no.  It’s not okay.

View original post 1,024 more words

I Act-So Smart: Mentoring the Youth


IMG_20141023_131447

Good writers have two things in common: they prefer to be understood rather than admired; and they do not write for knowing and over-acute readers.

-Friedrich Nietzsche

Sunday, January 11th, I had an awesome opportunity to facilitate the weekly Gloucester County NAACP Act-So chapter meeting.

What is ACT-SO?

The NAACP’s Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics is a year long achievement program designed to recruit, stimulate, and encourage high academic and cultural achievement among African-American high school students.

ACT-SO includes 26 categories of competition in the sciences, humanities, business, and performing and visual arts. Almost 300,000 young people have participated from the program since its inception.  Source: NAACPConnect

We had a conversation on “Writing Essentials”.  I met the nicest and most respectful teens who are participating in this national competition in the area of their passion…

  • Engineering
  • Photography
  • Writing: Essays, Short Stories, Poetry and Spoken Word
  • Drama
  • Dance
  • Music

They followed an agenda and during one point introduced themselves and talked about their competition area. When it came to my point in the program, I took the opportunity to critique their introductions. I wrote their names and disciplines down as I heard and understood them. When I read my notes back to them, six (6) out of the eleven (11) names were incorrect. I stressed when they stand before the judges, they must speak in strong voices to the last person seated in the room The person must be able to hear the proper annunciation of their name and the reason they are participating in the competition. It was a good start. It allowed me to stress, they needed to write out their who they were, why they were there, and what they were passionate about before hand. I challenged them to keep a journal as they participated in the Act-So competition.

I then went on to talk about how to become a great storyteller. Regardless of their discipline, storytelling is crucial to their presentation. We talked about the following:

  1. What makes a great storyteller.
  2. How to get started writing or telling their story.
  3. How and where stories are captured.
  4. How to define their main characters and keep them consistent throughout the story.

We discussed their personal mission and their passion. And I gave them a list of personal challenges for them to think and write about.

These high school students carried themselves as freshmen and juniors in college. I want to say to their parents and guardians, “Well Done!”  I want to thank Mrs. Larae Carter and her team of Mentors for inviting me and opening up yet another way for me to keep the process going. I am not giving back, I am paying it forward. That is what teen mentoring is all about.

We, yes I am on board as a mentor, are looking for more mentors. If you are interested please contact me at ActSoSmart@gladstonepublishing.com.

Gladstone Publishing Services: http://www.gladstonepublishing.com
One Smart Lady Productions: http://www.onesmartladyproductions.org

Subscribe Now

Take Back Your Health – Post #1


Whole Fruit and Vegetable Diet

You are What You Eat!

Anyone who follows my posts or have read at least one of my posts knows I am sincere about my health. Last night I attended our first night of four Nutritional Workshops entitled “Take Back Your Health” facilitated Michael Sloan, at our church, Green Grove Baptist Church in West Berlin, NJ. Some of the highlights for me was confirmation about watching what you eat, and adding exercise to your daily routine.

He began by reminding us the we have the ability to heal ourselves by faith. He cited Jesus commending those who he healed:

Matt: 9:11 Jesus turned and saw her. “Take heart, daughter,” he said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment.

Matt: 9:29 Then he touched their eyes and said, “According to your faith let it be done to you, and their sight was restored.

Luke 8:48 Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”

However, there are many of us who have lost loved ones who we believe were strong in their faith, yet they still died. What about them. Well I believe there are two ways of looking at this. 1) All things come to pass because it is God’s will. 2) Faith without Works is Dead.

Mr. Sloan is teaching us how to reverse disease in our body by using our immune systems to accomplish this feat. God gave us our immune system for this purpose. The foods we each and exercise assist our immune systems.

Wow…as I write this “The Doctors” will be talking about will “Faith Heal You?”. I will definitely tune in. I believe Faith is the magic pill.

Walked this morning. I am walking with someone who is 40 years younger than myself. Mr. Sloan said if we are out of shape and we begin to exercise, we are starting out at square one. Although my young partner is younger, she admits to never walking. So she and I are walking as equals. If you do not use your muscles, you will lose your muscles.

If you do not use the gifts God gave you, you will lose them.

Psalm 103:1-5

Praise the Lord, my soul;

all my inmost being, praise his holy name.

Praise the Lord, my soul,

and forget not all his benefits—

who forgives all your sins

and heals all your diseases,

who redeems your life from the pit

and crowns you with love and compassion,

who satisfies your desires with good things

so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

 

Girl Trek-Reflection on Walking


So far, I have not walked today. It is 9:20 pm. I have foot cramps and I am very tired. It has been a long hot, humid and on again off again rainy day.  I sent out the website link for  Theresa Tapp’s T-Tapp website to my GirlTrek team members. I discovered T-Tapp about 5 years ago and I swear by it for indoor walking. I am not an affiliate and I do not make any money off of recommending T-Tapp. At one time I desired to become a T-Tapp Instructor. As the years have gone by and my interest in other things became more prominent, I put that desire aside. Yet I still T-Tapp and will do the same this evening, if I do not walk outdoors, before turning in. I am determined to log my 30 minutes before the clock strikes midnight.

Hooray! I was able to take a break and walk my 30 minute commitment. I would have really felt badly if I missed walking today.

Commitment and focus allows us to succeed in achieving our goals; no matter how challenging they are. I have to tell you if you do not already know, I do not rely on my own strength or wisdom. One of my scriptures I follow is “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:6 NLT)

Tank ready for his walk.

Tank ready for his walk.

 

I walked 10 minutes with my companion, Tank, our 5 year old pit bull (it’s late). Then 15 minutes without the pit bull but with pepper spray (it’s late) and the final 5 minutes walking around my house (it’s late).

 

 

 

Yesterday my sidekick, Shanice, and I walked at Lt. Col. Samuel M. Siler Veterans Memorial Park on Chews Landing in Gloucester Township.

2014-06-08 18.15.542014-06-08 18.05.06

Walking is the best choice for me at 64 (June 24th). I enjoy the energy I feel in my legs as my feet hit the ground. I love the fact I can still breath through my nose and occasionally carry on a conversation with my friend as we fellowship and share a prayer.

I am thoroughly enjoying my commitment to walking. I feel better during the day and have more energy. I sleep better at night. Well tomorrow morning we’re off in search of a new park to walk in. Good night.

 

Image

Girl Trek: Walking in Blackwood, New Jersey


 

I’m a Girl Trekker from New Jersey. There are so many walking venues in Southern New Jersey. Grenloch Lake Memorial Park is just one of many we will seek out and share our pictures.

Grenloch-1

Grenloch Lake Memorial Park – a great place for a short walk. F.Y.I They stock the lake with trout.

Quote

Girl Trek – The Fruit of the Spirit – Kindness and Goodness


Today’s Fruit of the Spirit was Kindness. I apologize for going directly into the next day, I jumped the gun. It has been a long day. My write up for kindness was sent to my team members last night. I have to admit myself they are so closely entwined.

Day 5: Fruit of the Spirit (KINDNESS) The Bible says, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:31) You have to love in order to be kind. That is why LOVE is the first Fruit of the Spirit to grow in. Now we are at day 5, I challenge you to show kindness to someone who you have challenges with every time you encounter them. God is Love. You can be too. “Hit the Grow Walking”

Day 6: Fruit of the Spirit (GOODNESS)
The Bible says, “make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge”when-found-him-pp
(2 Peter 1:5). Today, we pray for our kids. We want good kids – not just smart kids. We pray that our schools will teach knowledge and virtue. Walk to a local school, a day-care center or the library. As you walk, pray that God will lead educators to model and teach good character as well as academic excellence. If the Spirit leads you, send a local principal, dean, teacher or staff member a note or e-mail of thanks and encouragement. Go the Extra Mile: Invite a girl in
your life to take a walk with you. As you walk, listen to her. Serve as a mentor on the trail. Ask her what she cares about. Give her positive feedback, good advice and kind words. (Source: www.girltrek.org)

There is a good study on the Goodness of God and the Study of Psalms 107. So as you complete your walk today, why not turn to Psalms 107 to read and meditate on it. Then download or read on line the paper written by Ron Hutchison.

 

 

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: