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Friday, August 31, 2012

Fantastic Friday - Being a Friend

Fantastic Friday - it is fantastic to know that you are a friend and that you have a friend.

Every Fantastic Friday post throughout the month of August have all been about friendship. I have written about listening, leaning, being frank and helping. Today, in the last of the August Fantastic Friday friendship posts, I am writing about being a friend. One of my favorite television theme songs from my youth is the theme from Golden Girls. The song is one friend thanking another friend for being a friend. It is a beautiful song. Click the link below to check it out.

Theme from "The Golden Girls"





It is wonderful to have a friend. It is equally wonderful to be a friend. When you are fortunate enough to find a person who is a friend to you, who has stood the test of time and has been a true friend to you when you were in need, that is indeed something to sing about. Friendship is a source of strength, power and happiness. It is a treasure. Perhaps it is good to celebrate having a friend by being a better friend to your friends. So, the question for you this Fantastic Friday is what are you going to do to cultivate the wonderful gift of friendship?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thrilling Thursday - Thinking Like Anything is Possible

Thrilling Thursday - it is thrilling to be able to think like anything is possible.

Throughout the month of August the Thrilling Thursday posts have been about thinking differently. This Thrilling Thursday the post is about thinking as if anything was possible. Imagine a world where anything is possible. Living a life where if your mind thinks of it and your heart believes it, you accomplish it. There are no limits on what you can do. Isn't that a wonderful world?

Louis Armstrong "Wonderful World"



When my teenie bopper was three years old she told my husband and I she was going to build a time machine. I believed her, actually, truly and totally believed her. She could not tell time, she could not use any tool more complicated than a hammer, but I believed my baby could build a time machine. I believed her because she saw no limitations in her world. She believed anything was possible. Thirteen years later, she may not still believe in that time machine, but I do. One of the greatest things about my children is the fact that they believe they can do anything they want. There is nothing in the world they think they cannot accomplish. I admire that. I adore it, I treasure it. I am so thrilled to be a mother who has children who believe the impossible is possible. It makes them happy and hopeful.




I have gotten through life expecting miracles and believing the impossible. Perhaps it is my Christian faith that sustains me. I like thinking that anything is possible because that means there are no limits on what I can do and where I can go. It is liberating and thrilling to think that anything is possible. So the question for you this Thrilling Thursday is what would you think about if anything was possible?

Add a link to your favorite post about achieving the impossible.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words -Phenomenal Women

Wonderful Wednesday - it is wonderful to know your place in the universe, and mine is phenomenal!

In today's edition of Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words from Others I am sharing Maya Angelou's "Phenomenal Woman."


Pretty women wonder where my secret lies. 
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size 
But when I start to tell them, 
They think I'm telling lies. 
I say, 
It's in the reach of my arms 
The span of my hips, 
The stride of my step, 
The curl of my lips.                                                 
 
I'm a woman 
Phenomenally. 

I walk into a room 
Just as cool as you please, 
And to a man, 
The fellows stand or 
Fall down on their knees. 
Then they swarm around me, 
A hive of honey bees. 
I say, 
It's the fire in my eyes, 
And the flash of my teeth, 
The swing in my waist, 
And the joy in my feet. 
I'm a woman 
Phenomenally. 
Phenomenal woman, 
That's me. 

Men themselves have wondered 
What they see in me. 
They try so much 
But they can't touch 
My inner mystery. 
When I try to show them 
They say they still can't see. 
I say, 
It's in the arch of my back, 
The sun of my smile, 
The ride of my breasts, 
The grace of my style. 
I'm a woman 

Phenomenally. 
Phenomenal woman, 
That's me.                                                          

Now you understand 
Just why my head's not bowed. 
I don't shout or jump about 
Or have to talk real loud. 
When you see me passing 
It ought to make you proud. 
I say, 
It's in the click of my heels, 
The bend of my hair, 
The palm of my hand, 
The need of my care, 
'Cause I'm a woman 
Phenomenally. 
Phenomenal woman, 
That's me.


That's right. lolLook back at the words! When I read them my  head lifts with pride, my shoulders pull back and my chest sticks out. I feel special and important. As I read the words whether aloud or silently, I feel the phenomenon that is me! I feel like a phenomenal woman. I see my body and appreciate its lines and curves. I picture the reaction and hushed whispers and looks of admiration when I walk into a room. I agree that when I pass people should be proud to see me, just as I am, because I am a phenomenal woman.

Every person should have a positive self image. There is something powerful and enlightening about having a good self image. When I am around people who stand up straight and think they are wonderful, it is encouraging and empowering and I like it! Appropriate self pride is contagious. When I get all dolled up and start strutting my stuff, my twin daughters get excited and start to prance around. They feel pretty and special. They catch my phenomenon!

Sometimes people need a little spark to light the ember of good self image. For any woman, this Maya Angelou poem can spark a great attitude and self confidence. So the question for you this Wonderful Wednesday is what sparks the phenomenal woman attitude in you?

Add a link to your favorite post about phenomenal women.


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Terrific Tuesday Take a Chance Giving Your Child Freedom

Terrific Tuesday - it is terrific to find just the right amount of freedom to give your children.
children children children kids
All August long, the Terrific Tuesday posts have been about taking chances. Today's post will be perhaps, the most risky chance taking opportunity of all, giving your children some freedom. As a mother, my most precious gift, my most wonderful blessing and greatest source of worry is my children.

I am the mother of a 16 year old daughter, a nine year old son, and two five year old girls. I have figured out many hard things in my life, I have passed the bar exam and I do calculus for fun when I am bored at home. None of that changes the fact that one of the hardest things I have ever had to figure out is how much freedom to give each child.

I realize that the 16 year old should have more freedom than the 5 year old twins, but how much is the right amount? So that is my newest challenge. Giving the 16 year old the appropriate amount of freedom. Recently, I let her go downtown to the  Gallery Mall in Philadelphia with two of her friends. That was something I did as a teenager, but I was a city girl, not an extra sheltered suburban girl like my teenie bopper.  My daughter and her friends had a great time in the city and everyone made it home together and by curfew. But it was a scary thing.




I know that she needs to get more freedom while she is living at home and can learn to handle it responsibly because she will be leaving for college in two short years. It is just hard to determine what freedom to give her and when. I will be praying about this on a regular basis until she leaves or college I am sure.

I am learning the amount of freedom appropriate for each of my children. So, the question for you this Terrific Tuesday is how are you determining how much freedom to give each of your children?

Add a link to your favorite post about giving children freedom.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Magnificent Monday - Magnificent Improvement - Athletics

Magnificent Monday - it is magnificent to be fit enough to be able to show off some athletic moves.

hahahaEvery Magnificent Monday throughout the the month of August I have been embarking upon some new are of magnificent improvement. I have started improvements to my attitude, my appearance and my academics. For the final Magnificent Monday of August 2012, I am starting to improve my athleticism. It is my dream to stop being the post-it on the right.

The steps toward increased athleticism have started. I am still trying to get to the Philly Marathon in November 2012. You cannot do that without putting in some work a lot of work. So, I have changed my diet, 50 percent of each meal needs to be fruits and vegetables. I have cut sugar and empty carbs. I always only enjoyed lean meat, so that is easy to continue. I like picture to the left. To improve my athleticism I am putting my time in both in the kitchen and in the gym. 





Numerous studies have been done all over the world that show a relationship between increased athleticism and increased life expectancy, increased happiness and increased satisfaction with life. So if doing a few push ups and sit ups will help me lead a better, more satisfying life, it seems well worth the sweat. So I am  getting up an hour earlier each morning so I can work out before starting my day. I am also going to pull out my Kindle at night and do the mini yoga routine each night before bed.

I am excited about my new plan to increase my levels of athleticism. I am looking forward to the rewards I will reap as a result of my hard work. It is truly going to be magnificent. So question for you this Magnificent Monday is what type of athletic activity are you going to get into?

Add a link to your favorite post about improved athleticism.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Serene Sunday - Positive Thinking

Serene Sunday - positive thinking has the power to change the circumstances in which we find ourselves.


There are some people who have a good attitude no matter what situation they encounter. Other people are miserable no matter how wonderful the world around them seems to be.  I have chosen to look for the silver lining in every cloud I encounter. I know that in the end everything will be OK.  In my world, if things are not all OK, then it is not over.


Frank Sinatra "High Hopes"


Like the song above indicates, if you have high hopes there is nothing you cannot achieve and no mountain you cannot move. So, the question for you this Serene Sunday is how are you going to use the power of positive thinking to find serenity?

Add a link to your favorite blog post about about high hopes and big dreams.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The One that Got Away

In 1986 she was working two jobs trying to put herself through college and pay to live in Center City Philadelphia. She had the biggest chip on her shoulder I had ever seen and I did not know what to do with her. I liked her potential. She dreamed of getting married, having children and a successful law practice. But I did not know how she was going to get there with that big chip on her shoulder, the secret insecurities and fear of being on her own in the world. 

That girl was me at nineteen when I moved out of my mother's house and into my own little apartment in downtown Philadelphia. I remember moving out on my own and being scared because I did not know if I would be able to make it through life on my own. I was just a girl from West Philly who moved downtown and dreamed of being That Girl  from the old television show. I learned to smile even when things were HARD and I did not know how I was going to pay the rent, the electric and eat all at the same time. I learned to keep the chip on my shoulder hidden beneath my cheap little suit blazers. 

I have not been that scared young girl for a long time. I have grown up. I got the husband, the kids and the law practice. The scared girl I was turned into a brave wife and mother who has learned to fight her way through life with grace and gave away the shoulder chip. The scared little girl got away, but, I am glad she is gone.



And That is When I Realized I was Married

 I was watching the belly dancer and then ahh, just like that, I realized I was a married woman.

Take 6 "Gold Mine"



This is the song my husband said made him want to marry me, because this is how he felt about me.

On March 31, 1990 I got married at about 10:30 in the morning. I am not being inaccurate or immodest when I tell you I was a beautiful bride. I spend my honeymoon on one of the Florida Keys called Sunny Isle at the Sea Breeze Motel. On the first night of my  honeymoon, my new husband and I ate in the motel's restaurant.  The place was full. Every table was occupied. My husband and I were the only black people in the restaurant and were by at least forty years, the youngest couple in the place. I sat watching all the older ladies who all had huge diamond engagement rings. I had a small, but beautiful to me, half caret diamond.

As I sat and ate dinner, I don't remember what the meal was at this point, I looked around at all those old married women and at my new, young, hot husband. The entertainment that evening was a belly dancer. I looked at the huge rocks on all the women at the other tables in the restaurant. They were all old women, older than my mother, and they were telling their husbands what to do and what to eat. I sat looking at them and at my engagement and wedding rings, twirling them around on my finger as I watched the belly dancer. Then it hit me, aahh, I was a married woman. 





Sensational Saturday - The Gift of Whimsy

Sensational Saturday - it is sensational to celebrate the gift of whimsy.

Each Sensational Saturday during the month of August these posts have talked about gifts. Each of the gifts talked about and discussed were pretty serious and important, life, friendship and children. The gift to be discussed this week is the gift of whimsy. The gift of whimsy is the gift of being extra happy and extravagantly silly for no good reason. With all we do in life, work, take care of home, raise children and the like, the gift of whimsy is a rare treat. Whimsy gives you the chance to be silly and happy.

This is me. I hope all the Davises read this and finally understand!
Have you ever had the opportunity to see a child at play? When left alone, they are happy. Children get to be happy and stress free for no reason at all and it is a beautiful thing. Most nights at around 10:30 I get up and dance around for no reason at all. I CANNOT dance well at all. The only thing worse than my dancing, is my singing.  But every night I am up singing and dancing, just enjoying the whimsy of my life for no reason at all. It is a good thing. My husband can tell when I have had a really hard day because there is no dancing, no singing, no fit of whimsy.




I enjoy my fits of whimsy and look forward to them. They are a little treat at the end of the day that make me smile. I think you should try to add a little whimsy to your life and see if it improves things. So, the question for you this Sensational Saturday is how do you plan to celebrate the gift of whimsy?

Add a link to your favorite post about a whimsical thing. 


Friday, August 24, 2012

Fantastic Friday - Helping a Friend

Fantastic Friday - it is fantastic to be able to help a friend.

friendshipThroughout the month of August, the Fantastic Friday posts have been about improving our friendships. This week's post deals with helping friends.  I think most of us have been in a situation where a friend has called upon us for help. Friends ask for all kinds of help: money, babysitting, a place to live, hook up for a job, moving or any of a million other things. Friendship is made up of two people helping each other through all kinds of situations.

Friends must be able to ask for help from one another and to help one another. As in most things, help in a friendship is a two way street. A friendship will not work if one person is always doing all the giving of the help and never doing the receiving of the help. An imbalance in the help scale will lead to resentment. Most of us will drop everything and help a friend in need when the situation calls for it. The problem is that many of us do not allow our friends to help us when we are in need.

A few years ago I had a friend who wanted to help me by giving me some things. I  did not want to accept them because I did not want to burden my friend. However, my friend wanted to do me a kindness and give me the gift. I was going to refuse her gift  until my husband stopped me. He explained that sometimes, it makes a person feel really good to do something nice for someone else.  He told me by refusing to let her help me I was denying her the chance to feel good and wasn't being a good friend.




One of the things that makes friendships special is reciprocity. This means friendship is made of give and take. One of the best things we can do to help a friendship grow and thrive is help and be helped by our friends.  Mutual aid and comfort is a beautiful thing.  So, the question for you this Fantastic Friday is what can you do today to help a friend?

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Thrilling Thursday - Thinking Like a Winner

Thrilling Thursday - it is thrilling to think like a winner.

Each Thursday throughout the month of August the Thrilling Thursday posts have been about thinking differently.

WinnerToday, the post will be about thinking like a winner. This means that in every situation think as if you are a winner. Act as if you are victorious no matter what the outcome of a situation. Here is an example to illustrate the point. A person goes out for a promotion at work and does not get it. There are two ways to look at the situation:




1.     The person is sad and feels defeated. Since she did not get the promotion she is resentful and vows not to be of service to her co-worker who did get the promotion.

2.     The person is sad she did not get the promotion. Since she did not get this promotion, she is eligible to apply for other opportunities at work. She starts planning for the next opportunity for advancement. On the way to work the next day she picks up a congratulatory greeting card for her former co-worker who got the promotion.

The woman in the first example is not looking at the situation as a winner. She sees nothing good about being denied the opportunity for advancement. The woman in the second example sees the positive in the situation. Since she did not get this promotion, she will be able to take advantage of other opportunities. She will not incur bad feelings from her promoted now former, co-worker.




When you think as if you are a winner, you see the rainbow at the end of every cloud. This is not a Pollyanna type of silliness, but realizing that joy comes in the morning. When you think as if you are a winner, no matter how many times you get knocked down you get back up and keep moving toward the goal. Thinking like a winner means there is always a smile close to your lips and courage always in your heart. So, the question for you this Thrilling Thursday is how can you start thinking like a winner?

Add a link to your favorite post about thinking like a winner.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words from Others

Wonderful Wednesday - sometimes it is wonderful to keep our true feelings hidden so that we can accomplish the mission.

In today's edition of Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words from Others will highlight my favorite poem from Paul Lawrence Dunbar, "We Wear the Mask."

**************************************

We Wear the Mask
    We wear the mask that grins and lies, 
    It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes,— 
    This debt we pay to human guile; 
    With torn and bleeding hearts we smile, 
    And mouth with myriad subtleties.

    Why should the world be over-wise,
    In counting all our tears and sighs?
    Nay, let them only see us, while
            We wear the mask.
    We smile, but, O great Christ, our cries
    To thee from tortured souls arise.
    We sing, but oh the clay is vile
    Beneath our feet, and long the mile;
    But let the world dream otherwise,
            We wear the mask!
******************************************

McKay was talking about the mask that black people in America wore in front of the white world during his lifetime from 1872 to 1906.  During that time, blacks did not enjoy the rights and privileges they do today so in order to survive  they had to hide their true feelings about the injustice they faced. If instead of wearing a mask, a black man were to show how he truly felt about not being able to get fair pay, being treated unfairly and being denied equal protection and opportunity, he very likely would face imprisonment or death.




The racial dynamic in America has changed over the course of the past 100 or so years. But there are still times when we need to wear a mask in order to get done what needs doing. I was recently speaking with a friend who had a problem with an administrative official when she was trying to get something done for her children. She thought the official was rude and ignorant and wanted to deny her requests. So, my friend got angry, showed her anger and walked away without the help she needed. She did not wear a mask.

I told her she needed to suck up her anger with the woman and have a different attitude in order to get what she wanted. She should have worn a mask. Instead of letting the official see her anger and disgust, she should have taken a different tact. I have found it useful to tell people that I do not know how to get done what I want done and that I really need their help. Most people like to help others. When I have taken this tact with people, asked them to do me a favor and help me, I almost always get favorable results. I never let the bad attitude of someone else stop me from getting what I want and need for my children. I have learned to mask anger and instead show desire for assistance.

We don't always have to let everyone know everything we are thinking and feeling. Sometimes we need to wear a mask. So the question for you this Wonderful Wednesday is how do you cover negative feelings and emotions so that you can act appropriately and get what you need in life?

Add a link to your favorite post about wearing a mask.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Terrific Tuesday - Take a Chance- Trust

Terrific Tuesday - this is a terrific day to take a chance and trust someone.

The Terrific Tuesday posts throughout the month of August have been about taking chances and doing things that are good for us, but perhaps a little scary. Today's post is about a scary chance taking opportunity. That is taking a chance by trusting someone in a relationship.

TRUST.....................fragile.....................trust

We all have relationships with a vast number of people. There are the relationships with spouses, significant others and children. In addition, we have relationships with friends and co-workers. We also have relationships with doctors, teachers, social workers, store clerks and others we come across on a daily basis.  Some of these relationships would be better if we had a little trust in the other person. I am not saying to pick the grocery store clerk and give her your ATM pin number and let her keep your purse.




Instead, I am saying look at all your relationships. Is there someone that you must be involved with, but do not fully trust the other party to the relationship. Look at your relationship with your spouse. Have you given your spouse your ATM pin? Do you hide purchases in your car? Is your salary a secret?  What about your co-workers, have you been harboring secret resentments based upon a lack of trust. Do you think the clerk at the local market is secretly overcharging you very time you buy bananas? What if you took a chance on one of those relationships and extended a little trust?

Trust is a precious thing. Once it is broken, it can take years to restore and rebuild. This post is not about extending trust to those who have broken it in the past. Take a chance and add a small amount of trust to a relationship in your life because it may prove to be a terrific thing! So the question for you this Terrific Tuesday is what relationship do you have that you can improve with a little trust?

Add a link to your favorite post about trust.


Monday, August 20, 2012

Magnificent Monday- Magnificent Improvement- Academics

Magnificent Monday - it is magnificent to know that you are never too old to learn a new trick.

Every Magnificent Monday throughout the month of August I am embarking upon a new area of magnificent improvement. I have already started improving my attitude and my appearance. This week I am doing some academic improvement. I have a passion for learning. Admittedly I am a big nerd. I sit around the house and work through one of my old calculus books for fun. I liked high school, college and law school. I miss the homework assignments.



So there is no reason for me not to kick up my heels, open some books and put some serious study into something. Toward that end  I have decided to teach myself Spanish ( I still remember a bit of my high school French). I am also going to go through a new economics textbook my daughter bought home. I also have a book of chemical equations I have been dying to work my way through. I think Spanish, economics and chemical equations is enough academic enrichment to start.

I am excited about the academic improvement project I have created for myself. I am looking forward to all the new things I am going to learn. I want to share them with my friends and with my family. I think we should never stop learning, never stop seeking out new information. So the question for you this Magnificent Monday is what are you interested in learning?

Add a link to your favorite blog post about academic improvement.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Serene Sunday - Journaling

Serene Sunday - sometimes you can find serenity by keeping a journal and using it on a regular basis.

Many young girls have kept diaries and have written their secrets on pretty pastel pages. Young girls often find comfort in writing down their secret thoughts an dreams for the future. As those young girls become young women they read books on journaling and begin to write journals instead of diaries.

Diary...It sounds very grown up to keep a journal. A journal is a big girl's book. A journal is not used to write about teenage fantasies and dreams. Journals are used to keep records, to make plans and to track goals.  There are numerous books being written everyday about writing  a journal and journaling. I think the point of journaling is that the act of writing down, or in these modern times typing out thoughts dreams and actions brings them closer to becoming reality. The act of keeping a journal takes us from thought to action.

When we think about things, we take the first step toward making them happen. When we put things into our journals, we take another step, real positive action toward making the thing happen. Try it yourself for a few days. Write down what you are thinking about. Make a little journal for yourself. It does not have to be something fancy, just paper clip or safety pin a few sheets of paper or note cards together and use them to write down your thoughts and dreams  and how you plan to go about making them come true. Write down your feelings about life and the people in your life.



After a week of writing in your journal, look back at what you have written and think about how you feel about what you have written. An important part of the journaling process involves reading what you have written and making decisions based upon what you have read. In a way, journaling is like therapy you give yourself. When done properly journaling allows you to get all your thoughts out where they can be examined and then lets you do the examination in a safe, secure place. So, the question for you this Serene Sunday is how can you harness the power of journal writing to find serenity?

Add a link to your favorite post about the benefits of keeping a journal.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Sensational Saturday - Celebrate Your Children

Sensational Saturday - it is always sensational to celebrate the gift of children.

being a momAnyone who ever looked at the upper right corner of my blog would know that I define myself as a Superwoman because I am a wife and mother of four children. I think I know better than most people what a blessing children are. When my husband and I were married two years we decided to make a baby. It didn't happen. We went to see specialists, took tests and took medications. We did not have a baby. Five years later out of the blue when we had given up and thanked God even though he had not blessed us with a child, we found out my teenie bopper was on the way. Seven years later my son arrived. Four years after that my twin girls.  Looking at me today, you would not think I was once barren and spent many nights crying to be blessed with children.

This is what I am feeling right now! God, please help me make my kids go to sleep.I have a friend who lost two children while she was pregnant. She finally gave birth to a son and is now, like me, grateful to be a mother. I think that no one understands the gift of motherhood like a woman who suffered through infertility or miscarriage. Having gone through both those experiences, I recognize my children for what they are, a gift and a miracle. This is not to say my children do not drive me crazy on occasion, because they do. I am simply trying to help you understand that children are a special gift.

Today, look at your children through the eyes of a woman who desperately wants children but cannot have them. Look at your children and imagine how they appear to a woman who has just suffered her second miscarriage and is still childless. I think that no matter how you feel about your children, when you look at them through these new and different eyes, they will look even better to you. So, my question for you this Sensational Saturday is, how do you plan to celebrate the gift of children?

Friday, August 17, 2012

Fantastic Friday - Being Frank with a Friend

Fantastic Friday - sometimes the most fantastic thing you can do for a friend is to speak frankly.

 In this, the third in our Fantastic Friday friendship celebration series, I am writing about the importance of being frank with a friend. It is important to be frank when dealing with friends because sometimes our friends do things that are inappropriate, unacceptable or wrong. When our friends begin traveling of onto the wrong path we need to have a frank discussion and tell them to get back in line. Your ability to be frank in the proper way can save a friend and a friendship.

When we are frank with another person, we are open, honest and to the point with that person. To speak frankly means to be direct, unreserved and without subterfuge. While frank means we do not hold punches when we speak, it does not mean we speak without care or feeling for how our words will effect the listener. In this case, we are talking about speaking with a friend. We should speak to our friends with care for their feelings as well as a desire to provide true and honest information.

The Winans "A Friend"


Once in a while a friend may do or say some really off the wall stuff. At those times you have to tell a her she is out of her mind or needs to get her act together. For example, if you have a friend with a good husband who is acting like a fool, taking him for granted, being disrespectful or even cheating, she needs to be talked to frankly. It is your duty to speak with her in an open and honest way and let her know while she may be having fun, she is making a huge mistake and she needs to get her act together and turn her behavior around. 

asqWhile being frank, you must choose your words carefully. If your words are too harsh or without care, your friend will not listen. If your words are too soft or too jokingly said, she will not take you seriously. It is important to find the right balance, search for it and when you find it, hold on to it. Friendship is work, but if you have a good friend, she is worth the effort. Learning to speak to our friends frankly is an important skill that we should all hone. So, the question for you this Fantastic Friday is do you have any friends with whom you need to have a frank conversation?

Add a link to your favorite post about being frank with a friend, be sure to check out the posts ahead of yours.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Thrilling Thursday - Thinking in Someone Else's Shoes

Thrilling Thursday - sometimes it is thrilling to think inside someone else's shoes.

Every Thursday throughout the month of August the Thrilling Thursday posts have been about thinking differently. Today's post is about thinking inside someone else's shoes.

Many of us never spend time thinking about how others see a situation. We look at things from our own perspectives and cannot imagine why we would ever look at things from someone else's perspective. I am suggesting that you look at things from another person's perspective so that you can get a fuller perspective of a situation.

Think back to your elementary school. Do you remember when you walked into school the first day of kindergarten? As a little kid, the school seemed so big, the halls were so wide, the classroom so large,  the desk and chairs as if they were made for big people. Many years have gone by, perhaps you are now taking your own children back to that school as kindergarteners. When you look at the elementary school now, the halls probably seems small, the desks are tiny and you could never sit in one of those chairs and maker it out alive.


Owl walks in someone else's shoes. :DNow in reality, the size of the halls, classroom and furniture have not changed. It is all the same as it ever was. We have changed. We are larger and older. Our perspective has changed.  Changing perspective from mother to father, from child to parent or from customer to seller  makes the situation look different. If you look at shopping from the perspective of the store owner you will understand that selling meat cut on Wednesday less expensively on Friday will get rid of a lot of meat before it goes bad. This will help you understand why you are getting your chicken for twenty-nine cents per pound less on Friday. If you understand that the cell phone manufacturer wants you to buy a phone and that a rebate of $50 will make you buy the phone, but you most likely won't fill out the rebate papers on time. You understand the manufacturer's motivation.

Looking at a situation from someone else's view will help you get a fuller picture.  While it may not cause you to change your mind about a situation, it will help you to understand how the other person sees things. If you understand how the other person sees things, it will help you figure out how the other person will react to the situation. If you know how the other person will react to the situation, you can guide you actions in the most productive way possible. So, the question for you this Thrilling Thursday is whose shoes will you think in today?

Add a link to your favorite post about looking at things from a different perspective, be sure to check the links ahead of yours.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words from Others

Wonderful Wednesday - it is wonderful to stand tall and proud in the face of unfair opposition.

In this entry we are continuing the Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words from Other series. Today I am going to share Claude McKay's "If We Must Die." As a young child, I remember wanting to be a black panther. I liked the idea of fighting against oppression and making the world a better place for my people. My career as a panther was cut short before it even began. I was not allowed off the front steps, I was not allowed to use the telephone and I was denied access to the postal service.

While I could not be a panther. I did enjoy reading the poets of the Harlem Renaissance and through the 1960s. One poem I read as a child that helped instill a sense of pride and admiration for the fight was Claude McKay's "If We Must Die."

If We Must Die 
By Claude McKay 
****************************

If we must die, let it not be like hogs

Hunted and penned in an inglorious spot,
While round us bark the mad and hungry dogs,
Making their mock at our accursèd lot.
If we must die, O let us nobly die,
So that our precious blood may not be shed
In vain; then even the monsters we defy
Shall be constrained to honor us though dead!
O kinsmen! we must meet the common foe!
Though far outnumbered let us show us brave,
And for their thousand blows deal one death-blow!
What though before us lies the open grave?
Like men we'll face the murderous, cowardly pack,
Pressed to the wall, dying, but fighting back! 


****************************
I like the fight in this poem. McKay saw the danger in fighting against his enemies. He knew the enemy was cruel, unwavering, and large in number. Yet, he was still determined to fight. In McKay's vision, one fought against oppression and maintained a sense of dignity while doing so. The poem is a rallying cry to a people being oppressed and killed in a disgusting and cruel manner. McKay calls upon his people to fight and die with honor, like men. McKay called for his people to never quit, never surrender.

Public Enemy "Fight the Power"



I have lived my life following a version of that philosophy. I am a fighter! When I set my mind toward something I achieve it. I never quit, I never surrender. There is a sense of fight in me that is strong and wonderful. I like this poem because it is about strength and power and dignity. It helped me grow up strong and determined.

The words we read from others have the power to influence us to do great and wonderful things. So, the question for you this Wonderful Wednesday is what piece of literature has influenced and encouraged you to stay strong and fight against strong and overwhelming odds?

Add a link to your favorite post about fighting back against impossible odds and remember to check out the posts before yours on the list.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Terrific Tuesday - Take a Chance - Start a Business

Terrific Tuesday - it is terrific to take a chance and start a business.

The Terrific Tuesday posts throughout the month of August are abut taking chances. Today I am writing about taking a chance by starting your own business.

 There are many people who are working for other people every day and every night dream about owning their own business. They wake up in the morning, go to work and and dream the same dream the next night. Night after night the dream remains the same. There are other people who go to work each day, working for someone else and dream of starting a business. These people write notes about the business they want to start on their lunch breaks. In the evenings they read books about starting a business. On the weekends they work on their business plans, paying careful attention to their financials. At the end of six months, both people are still working for other people. But, the second group of people have started businesses of their own. A few of them are making plans to leave their day jobs. A few of them are planning to keep the day job and work their businesses at the same time. The main thing that separates the second group from the first is that the second group took a chance and are now feeling satisfied and fulfilled.

In order to start a business that will succeed, whether the business will be a full time family supporting enterprise or a part time business that brings in some extra cash, the starting step is the same. Start with a business plan. A business plan calls for you to ask yourself a lot of questions and do a lot of research about your proposed business and that of your competitors. You look at the feasibility and financial soundness of the business you propose. In my consulting business, on more than one occasion the business plans I wrote for clients helped them to get the businesses of their dreams and run them efficiently, effectively and profitably. It made me feel like a godmother to help them.

It takes guts and heart to start your own business. Never go into business on your own because you think it will be easier than working for someone else. If anything, it will be harder, much harder. The guaranteed paycheck every Friday is gone, instead what you do or do not get is all based upon what you do, you get what you earn. At the same time, the rewards of entrepreneurship of creating a living, thriving business of your own are immeasurable and terrific.


Starting a business of your own is a dream, and an awesome undertaking if you have been thinking about it, today is the day to get up and do it! Take the big step, go out on faith and do it. So, the question for you this Terrific Tuesday is what type of business are you going to take a chance and start?


Add a link to your favorite post about taking a chance and starting a business.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Magnificent Monday - Magnificent Improvement - Appearance

Magnificent Monday - it is magnificent to improve your appearance up a notch.

 Throughout the month of August I am working on magnificent self improvements. Last week I started work on my attitude and this week I a looking at ways to kick my physical appearance up a few notches. I have been a wife for more than twenty-two years and a mother for more than sixteen. I am not proud to admit it, but over the years I have stopped paying attention to my appearance. I used to think I was too  busy to worry about what I looked like. My husband loves me and thinks I am a major hottie no matter what. My children love me and don't pay much attention to what I look like. So around the house, I am a little, ok, ok, a lot sloppy.

No one around the house is complaining. But, over the course of the last few weeks, I have not been pleased with what I see when I pass by the mirrors in the house. My hair sometimes looks a little scary. Some of the outfits I see myself in look more like I live in a shelter than the tony suburb of Bryn Mawr, Pa. So, without my family saying a word, I have decided to do some redecorating and fix myself up a little. I know that people should love me for the inside and not the outside. However, I am loved and lovable, so I want to kick up the looks so that I can smile at what I see.

I am not a good hairstylist by any stretch of the imagination. I have two hairstyles that I can do and rock like a star. So, from now on, I am going to spruce myself up into one of those every day. Based upon what they have seen lately, my family may not believe this, but I have some nice matching clothes. So now I am going to start putting them on inside the house, not just when I go out into the world. My husband my fall out and faint, but I am going to start throwing on some of my good red, glossy lipstick every few days.

I am excited about the prospect of looking good. I am doing it for myself. The enjoyment my family will receive from it is an added bonus.  So the question for you this Magnificent Monday is what is your beautification tip for busy women?

P.S.     Remember that post I did on the great dress I got from eShakti.com pictured above.  Shop now and save 10% on every order  Use code JA20VZS good till Aug 31. This came in at a good time since I am working on my appearance.

Add a link to your favorite post about magnificent improvements.
Be sure to stop by the links ahead of you!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Serene Sunday - Meditation

Serene Sunday - sometimes a few moments of quiet meditation can bring serenity.

Think think think
Meditation is commonly thought of as continued or extended thought or contemplation. In most of our lives we could do with more thinking, more continued or extended thought. The problem is that we often don't have the time or chose not to find the time to do the thinking that needs to be done.

 I propose we take time each day just for thinking. I am not proposing turning your life in to a monk like existence. What I am proposing is that you spend five minutes at the start of each day, before you even get out of bed in thought. Start the day just thinking, not doing anything, just thinking about something, anything. the subject of the thoughts is up to you. Think about your family, your work, your dream car, anything. Just spend the start of your day in quiet meditation, deep thought about something.
Think!!

By the way, don't stop thinking after you get out of bed. Check out the graphic on the right for thoughts on thinking before you speak throughout the day. Meditation, deep thought is a good way to start the day and to live  your life.
So, the question for you this Serene Sunday is, how can you use meditation to bring serenity into your life?


Add a link to your favorite post about meditation.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Sensational Saturday - Celebrate Friendship


Sensational Saturday - it is sensational to celebrate a special friendship.


Friends being friends
This Sensational Saturday post is about celebrating friendship. I have written quite a few posts about friendship over the course of the past few months.  I do that because friendship is important to me. I value my friends, I treasure them. I like to take opportunities to celebrate them.


I met my best friend when I was 19 years old. Back then, I was a skinny young girl who had dreams of taking on the world. My friend was five years older and had seen a little more of the world than I had. I was impressed with his intelligence, his charm and his breadth of knowledge. In the beginning, I think he liked my short skirts. As time passed, our friendship grew and deepened. We shared late night phone calls, all day long talks and hundreds of meals. As time passed, I stopped thinking about my future alone and started picturing him in my future.

nnTime continued to pass, like and lust turned to love and marriage. Before I knew it, 26 years and four children have come. Like most friendships that last for year,our has grown and changed and become something quite different from what it was when it started out. It is better than it was. Over time, the friendship has grown up and become a bigger, better thing. I am happy about it. I depend on it, I trust it, I take it for granted. 

Take a look at your friendships.  Examine which ones make you smile, cry, have lasted the longest or are the most valuable to you. I have never heard of a person who did not like to hear that she was special or valued.  So, the question for you this Sensational Saturday is how do you celebrate your best friend?

Add a link to your favorite post about friendship.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Fantastic Friday - Lean on Me

Fantastic Friday - it is fantastic to have a friend you can lean on.

In this week's Fantastic Friday post, we are once again celebrating friendship and being the kind of friend someone can lean on. We all have experienced times when we could not go on without help. As human beings we have dealt with all kinds of hard things, job loss, death of a child or parent, illness or even divorce. During those hard times some people come close to giving up, to surrendering to loss and despair. The thing that keeps may people from giving up, that allows them to hang on is that they have good friends that can be leaned upon.


Kirk Franklin "Lean On Me"



The way life works in the real world, is that sometimes you need to lean and at other times people lean on you. We all need to set ourselves up so that when our friends need someone to lean on, our names automatically come to their minds. In order to be someone people can lean upon we need to be dependable, trustworthy, and discrete. By developing these characteristics you will increase your value as a friend. In addition, by being the type of person your friends can lean on, you are giving them an example of how to be that type of person as well.

When you are dependable, you are available when people call upon you. Dependable people are steady, steadfast and constant. There is no unpleasant surprise when dealing with dependable people. A trustworthy friend is one who will not take the information given by a friend in need and use it for one's own benefit. A trustworthy friend never uses secrets against the friend who gave the secrets. Discrete friends are careful about who hears and learns about information given by friends. A person who is a discrete friend will not spread information given by a friend, but will maintain confidences. Dependable, trustworthy and discrete friends  are friends you can lean on with confidence and security.

It is important to be the kind of person your friends can lean on because support is very important in a friendship. If you look back over life at the people who were there during your hard times, the ones you appreciate, value and call true friends are the ones who let you lean on them as long as you needed. Good friends let you lean on them and make you feel like in your leaning you are supporting them and helping them through life. So, the question for you this Fantastic Friday is are you the type of person your friends can lean upon?


Thursday, August 9, 2012

Thrilling Thursday Thinking Like There is No Box

Thrilling Thursday - the freedom that comes from thinking like there is no box is thrilling.

outside the boxThroughout the month of August the Thrilling Thursday posts are all about thinking differently. Last week I wrote about thinking outside the box. For our purposes today, the box is the way people normally look at something, strict rules for how to do things, how to think about things. This week I am writing about thinking as if there was no box. 
How would you behave if your life was not defined by other people, by what you did yesterday? What would your life be like if you could be anything, do anything and there was nothing limiting the future for you, but you? Does that possibility sound exciting or frightening?

If you get rid of the box, then the possibility to dream exists and you are able to do what you want. Pick a dream any dream. Now if there was nothing to stop you, figure out how you would get from where you are today to your dream. Remember, there is no box, there is nothing standing between you and your dream. Just go for it. Everything is possible now that you are thinking as if there is no box at all.

Vanessa Williams "Dreamin"


To go from here to the dream the only thing in your way is determination and hard work. When you act as if there is no box, you create the design you want your life to take. Get up and move. All the thinking in the world does not get you out of the box. No matter how much thinking you do, you cannot turn the box into  a circle or make it the triangle you would like it to be. If you want to change the shape of your life and dream, you must act, you must do something. So, the question for you this Thrilling Thursday is what would you do if there was no box?

Add a link to your favorite blog post about thinking differently.



Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Wonderful Wednesday - Wonderful Words from Others

Wonderful Wednesday -it is wonderful to continue the fight, even when it gets hard.

Last Wonderful Wednesday we started a series on wonderful words from others.  Today we are continuing that series with my favorite poem from my favorite poet of all time: Langston Hughes.

I was first introduced to Langston Hughes when I was a child of ten or eleven. My father had a set of books about this guy named Simple that were written by Langston Hughes. The stories were interesting, folksy and interestingly political. When I saw a book of poems by the same author got my attention and I began reading them and could not stop. Thirty years later, I cannot resist an Langston Hughes poem. My favorite of them all is "Crystal Stair."


Mother to Son
Well, son, I'll tell you:

Life for me ain't been no crystal stair.

It's had tacks in it,
And splinters,
And boards torn up,
And places with no carpet on the floor—
Bare.
But all the time 
I'se been a-climbin' on,
And reachin' landin's,
And turnin' corners,
And sometimes goin' in the dark
Where there ain't been no light.
So, boy, don't you turn back.
Don't you set down on the steps.
'Cause you finds it's kinder hard.
Don't you fall now—
For I'se still goin', honey,
I'se still climbin',
And life for me ain't been no crystal stair.
                                        ******************************************
As a child when I read that poem I was hopeful. I thought no matter how bad things get, you have to keep pushing and walking, pushing and walking. It seemed to me there was no excuse for quitting. I realized that life was hard. You could not be a little girl growing up in West Philadelphia when I did and not have an understanding that life was hard some times. At the same time, I still had hope that I could end up some place like Bryn Mawr, and I did.

Today people often say "Rise and Grind" or "Get ready." I never use those two phrases. In my world, you do not rise and grind, you grind from where you are and don't stop. I don't believe the proper course of action is to get ready for battle. To the contrary, I believe you stay ready. The "Mother to Son" poem taught me that sometimes things are rough, but  you suck it up, put on your big girl panties and keep climbing. There is no reason to stop climbing until you reach the goal you have set.

Recently I heard a song with lyrics

When times get hard I go harder . . .
My mama ain't raise no sucker
I ain't scared of no struggle,

Stic.man "Let it Burn"


The song is about working out, but I saw a tribute to Langston Hughes' "Crystal Stair." In my mind, it is a mother's job to teach her children to keep moving, keep climbing no matter how hard things get. She should teach this with her words and with her actions. I have always tried to do that with my children. I definitely did not raise them to be suckers and none of them are afraid of struggle. I am still climbing and will never stop.

Life is hard sometime and there is sometimes struggle that takes place. So the question for you this Wonderful Wednesday is what words are you using to inspire you to continue on no matter how hard the journey?

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Terrific Tuesday - Take a Chance -Find a New Job

Terrific Tuesday - it is terrific to take a chance and find a new job that is satisfying and rewarding.

Throughout the month of August, the Terrific Tuesday posts will all be about celebrating taking chances and doing things that may be a hard and scary.
Today, the post is about how terrific it is to find a new job in part because I am looking for a new job. Over the course of the next several months talk about how the jobs market and the economy are or are not growing. There will be politicians on both sides with predictions about where jobs are and how to create them. While all that talk makes good television and sells newspapers, it does nothing to help people find real jobs in the real world. So today I am posting about finding a new job and providing resources to help in the job search.

There are literally thousands upon thousands of books telling you how to get a job and the steps you need to take to find employment. The following four books were found on the Amazon Kindle site. All were free so that anyone can afford them. Keep in mind if you do not have an Kindle, you can install a Kindle app reader for free on your computer or smart phone.

You may not have time to read all of these books before you have to start the search for a new job. I shall start up with a few pieces of information to get you started on your journey toward finding new employment. First, sit down and think about what kind of job do you want to find. For example if you are looking for a job in sales, you will not find a that job by searching the listings for substitute teachers.  Once you have a clear understanding of the type of job you want. It is time to start creating a resume that will get the attention of the gate keeper to the job you desire.

A resume is a history of your work experience, usually on a single sheet of paper that an interviewer can use to get a snap shot of you and and how you fit into the job opening. Most interviewers are not going to read more than one page of a resume for screening purposes, so be brief and be careful in writing your one page resume. If you think you cannot be adequately represented in one page, do the one page anyway and take another version of your resume, two pages in length maximum with you to interviews to discuss with the interviewer. Once you have your resume written, make sure to have it proof read by one or more people you respect.  It is very important that your resume be checked for spelling and grammatical errors. It is not convincing for you to say you are detail oriented if  you show up with a resume riddled with errors.  

After the resume is done, it is time to start the job search. Do not limit yourself to  the classified ads in the newspaper. Let your Facebook friends know you are looking for work. Tweet to your followers that you re searching for a job. Ask your Linkedin connections for help. Also keep in mind that looking for a job, a good job is a time consuming process. It may take you several hours a day, every day to find the job you want.  Interestingly, finding a job, is a job!

This post has done what it was designed to do, given you enough information to get you started on the road to finding  a new job. You know what kind of work you want to do, you have prepared the appropriate resumes and started telling everyone you know you are looking for a job. Now get moving. No amount of reading can get you the job you want unless you get up and take action to do what needs doing. So, the question for you this Terrific Tuesday is what are you going to take a chance on at work today?

Monday, August 6, 2012

Magnificent Monday - Magnificent Improvement -Attitude

Magnificent Monday - it is magnificent to improve yourself, starting with a good attitude.

Love thisThroughout the month of August, I am going to work on improving myself starting with the As: attitude, appearance, academics and athleticism. I am taking this journey towards magnificent self improvement because I deserve to be the best I can be and I want that best to be better tomorrow than it is today. I am just conceited enough to think that if I set my mind to it I can make magnificent changes in my life in just a month.

I  do not control other people, I can only control myself and how I deal with situations.  I want to be better at a wide variety of things. Going along with the there's no time like the present idea, I am spending this month making some magnificent improvements to me. Join me on this exciting journey through self improvement and interesting changes.


:)Ok, let's start with attitude. I would like to be the kind of person who people look at and see the blessings of God. I am a Christian woman and I want to live a life that makes that obvious to people. I don't want to have to tell people I am a Christian or that I am trying to live a life of goodness, morality and high standards. I want my attitude and behavior to do the talking for me. So, starting today and continuing for, well forever, before I open my mouth I am going to think about what I am going to say and make sure my words are soft and sweet in case I have to eat them the next day! I know my family will be particularly pleased with this notion.

There are many people who need total, all over attitude adjustments. Other people are fine and just need a little tune up in an area or two.  If  you are either one of these types of people, start improving your attitude with me today. So the question for you this Magnificent Monday is are you willing to do some attitude adjustments?

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Serene Sunday - The Power of Prayer


Serene Sunday - serenity can be found in the power of prayer.

I have always believed in prayer. As a young child I said my prayers  before I went to sleep at night even when I did not know what it all meant.  As a young woman, I came into my faith and developed my own personal relationship with God and continued to pray. When I became a young bride I prayed for myself and my new husband. Later, when I became a mother, my prayers began to include my growing batch of children. I pray when things are good and I pray when things are bad. I just pray.

Years ago, I had a young assistant who worked for me. She was involved in a car accident one day on the way to work. She called to explain she would be late because she was in an accident and the two friends with her had to go to the hospital. I asked if she was going to the hospital and if she wanted me to pick her up and take her home. She informed me that her mother had prayed for her so she didn't need the hospital and she would be to work about an hour late. That experience touched me and made me want to be that kind of mother.

My children from the time they were tiny little things whenever one of my children fell down I would pray for them and pray their boo-boos would get better. They always did. No matter how the children got hurt, the first thing they said as tiny little ones and the first thing they say now is "Mommy, I got hurt, can you pray for me?" If my son is having a hard day he will ask me to pray for him. If he is having trouble behaving as expected he will ask for a hug and for me to pray for him. I have become that praying mother I wanted to be.

Helen Baylor "Praying Grandmother"

Scientists have done studies that show hospital patients who pray have better outcomes than those who do not. There is a strong body of study that says the words people say have power. Prayer is words, spoken to God by a person with hope or sometimes with desperation. For me, prayer is hope, strength and a path to serenity. So, the question for you this Serene Sunday is do you use the power of prayer to find serenity?