Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Just Listen...

Here I was staring at my computer screen, not really sure what to write about tonight. Sometimes I am just SO sleepy by the time I sit down to post my blog that I draw a blank. (yes... it happens). I have been writing it in the morning  lately for that reason, however today I had clients at my studio all day, so I am a tired girl this evening. What I typically do when this happens is scroll through my Facebook feed to see if something inspires me enough to write about it and if that doesn't work I go to my email. I get flooded with inspirational emails because of my searches and because those who know me, know me well, I get emails forwarded to me that they think I will like or that remind them of me. Tonight... Facebook failed me but my trusty email search was a success. I rarely have time to read the influx of messages I get in a day the day I get them but if they sound interesting enough to come back to I will flag them and read them as soon as I have some downtime.

So tonight... I have to say THANKS ANI! (my dear client and now friend) An email you sent me this week sparked tonights topic!

She sent me one of her favorite sayings, (Author was not named in the email)


"To be kind is more important than to be right. Many times what people need is NOT a brilliant mind that speaks, but a special heart that listens." 

The first thing I want to say is.... "WOW" I could not LOVE any other saying more than that one right now! What a brilliant statement that I wish I could lay claim to. I have thought similar things so many times but the delivery of that just ROCKS.

Being a stylist, I practice this daily! For nearly 22 years I have been learning to be a better listener. I have read books and articles on it, and I have researched the way the brain works when it comes to thinking of others needs first; when a client sits in my chair they NEED me to LISTEN FIRST, TALK SECOND! I like to talk... (who me?) if you have been reading my blogs, you know this to be true; I even type-talk a lot!! (It's not my fault I resemble a walking encyclopedia)   :(

My point is that it took me a long time to learn how to listen because I could never hear anyone else over myself. I am better now, (not to say I am not still in favor of being the center of attention at times) and am thankful that someone was balsy enough to tell me that I needed to learn how to do this better. (thanks Mom, it's why you are my best friend) The cool thing is that once I learned how, I was able to help them better, service them better and because of that my business changed. I no longer had to slave over my chair, rarely eating lunch and stretching my bladder to inconceivable widths, I was able to REALLY give them THEIR time. Private time, quiet time, relaxation or I need to talk or vent time; anything they were in the mood for I was ready to listen.

So, what happened next? Well... I made more money in less time by filling the NEEDS of others BEFORE mine. Funny how that cliche' saying really began to work for me. The most amazing thing was that I learned more about my customers, we became REAL friends... and I felt luckier and luckier every day. I enjoyed the company and loved my job again. Once the gloriousness and fashionable feeling of doing what I do for a living wears off; there has gotta be something left, and all you have is your extended family (aka clients). For someone like me, who enjoys to flap her jaws, it was tough, but very rewarding.

In closing, I will share that when you listen... you change; your heart changes, your thought processes change; now, when I do flap my jaws... I hope to share something that will affect them positively, not something that will make them walk away stressed out or worried that I was too preoccupied with life and messed up their hair! (yep... I am SURE some of my clients over the years thought this about me a time or two!) Listening is a gift, and I am happy that I strive to become the best one I can be, and suggest you do the same. Think about how music would sound if we never listened to it....

To Ani... if you are reading:  You have only been a client for a short time in comparison to my others, however the impact your friendship has had on me is profound. We always talk and listen to each other SO much that we always forget to book your next appointment! I am thankful for our conversations and always enjoy seeing your name on my schedule. Thanks for being the person you are, you inspire me every time I see you.

Enjoy your night everyone! Listen real close and you may just hear a shooting star!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Take it to the Limit....

There have been many times in my life when I felt like I could not stand one more blow, it seemed I had gotten caught up in a whirlwind of challenges left with no way out. Swallowed up by defeat, wanting to cry, scream, throw something or all of the above. We have all been there, some give up while others prevail despite our initial response to throw in the towel. There is a trick to standing tough, and it took years for me to discover it.

How many times have you been stressed by situations that you could do nothing about? When a situation occurs that you cannot change no matter how hard you try, leave it alone and don't waste your time or energy worrying, in time it will work itself out. We stress about news that we hear on TV (it's why I don't watch it) we stress about things we cannot fix, change or make happen. Have you ever looked at your bank account and said to yourself, "How in the world will I make it through this month?" I know I have; being self employed my money comes in waves but the bills show up the same time every month regardless of what kind of month I have had, and it can be stressful... no doubt about that. So... what do you do when this happens? Are you doing everything you can to make ends meet? Could you work more hours, market your services with letters or fliers? Could you find another stream of part- time income? Could you cut back on expenses? There is always a way, but giving up is not on the list of options. Giving up will keep you in the hole, stuck in that rut, with no way out.

I have many streams of income, and am always open to adding more as long as minimal time is required. I find time to make things happen; it's how I am wired, it's all I know. I know lots of people that have been given opportunities and turned up their nose saying that it's "not for them" I walk away thinking... how do you know until you TRY?

I have learned to pay attention to what matters, tackle the necessities, do my best not worry about the things I cannot fix, I take time to laugh, smile, appreciate what I have, give to others when I can, and push myself when I hit a wall. You must take it to the limit every chance you get; defeat is not a solution to anything.

PUSH yourself, BELIEVE in yourself, BE yourself



Friday, August 24, 2012

False Insecurity Sabotage

It happens all of the time, in relationships, friendships and just in general. We create false insecurities and doubt through assumptions we devise when we compare current situations to past experience. No matter how much we try to bury the emotions from bad experiences of our past, inevitably there will be things that happen to stir them up again at some point in our lives. Maybe you had a bad experience with flying, which leaves you afraid to fly again. Perhaps you were cheated on by someone and even though you did not recognize the signs then; now you automatically assume that a person is cheating on you when something feels "familiar" or maybe you were once fired from a job and the vibe that surrounded that seems to be present again in your new job making you fearful of being fired.

It's a common human trait which I am guilty of and I am sure that you are too. The question is this... do we create situations, scenarios, arguments and breakups with false insecurity sabotage? I think a lot of times, we do. We keep ourselves from experiencing happiness and accepting things for what they are instead of what we think they might be or what they will become. We automatically assume the worst instead of expecting the best. So, how do you change that? I am learning this myself, but what seems to be working is checking myself. In other words, when I begin to compare, assume, or suspect I stop... and say to myself; "is this what is REALLY happening or are you feeling deja vu?" I give myself a moment to sincerely answer that question and if I am feeling insecure or fearful due to an experience I had in my past I stop and decide what it is I need to do to change what I am feeling.

In my current relationship, I have found myself feeling this way a few times just because something happened that vaguely reminded me of a past relationship. I would automatically start concocting stories in my head of what is going on. When this occurred my blood pressure probably went up as I began making crazy assumptions and instead of talking about what I was feeling with my partner, I would be quiet allowing things to fester until it finally came to a point I had to address it. At times I would fester for days causing myself grief that was unnecessary and in the end I would feel so silly. I have come to the conclusion that talking about things is not the first reaction for two reasons; one is the feeling that I am being stupid for thinking what I am thinking and if I just let it go I will get over it, and the second reason is being fearful that I am right.

When you have been burned in the past, you build walls to try and "protect" yourself from ever feeling that way again; but when you make a new friend, enter a new relationship or start a new job you get excited and eventually become vulnerable. Vulnerability causes you to lose some control over emotions, and this is where it all happens. There is good and bad in everything but allowing yourself to become vulnerable can open up doors to a great life. It helps you stay open minded about things, and although it can initially make you feel uneasy it is necessary to grow. I hate feeling vulnerable because every time I have been crushed, I was in a vulnerable state; I let my guard down and trusted someone or a situation that should not have been trusted. Although it pains me to think of these times in my life, the experiences have certainly helped me evolve.

Do yourself a favor, open up your heart; collapse a wall or two for the good of your future. What one situation or person brought to your life does not predict what someone else will do. Every situation is unique, just as every person is and in order to experience what is meant for us, we must believe in ourselves, our relationships, our careers and the future of it all.


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Patience, Humility and Understanding

If you read my post on Monday, which is part 1 to this post..., you know the story of the area I was in and why. I had two encounters that day that made me realize how changed I am now, how my heart has become softer and more empathetic towards people that I once felt uncomfortable around. As I was on my way to the room where the parents were being escorted to get their voluntary Pre-Kindgergarten certificates I noticed the young African American couple and their little boy in front of me. The mother had an obvious physical disability and was also unable to speak; I knew this because she was moving her mouth as she "spoke" to her husband in sign language and no sounds were coming out. They sat down in the room across from me and the husband had a confused look on his face as the lady explained what everyone needed to do. He called her over after she finished and attempted to explain what he needed, but was having a hard time getting his point across. I was filling out my paperwork, but could not help but feel this man's frustration as the lady was not clear on what he needed. The mother's hands were going a mile a minute trying to "tell" her husband what to communicate to the lady and he kept asking her to calm down; their little boy looking blankly ahead. The lady gave the man some papers and sent him on his way. Although she was not rude in her tone, she clearly did not feel like dealing with them anymore.

I felt bad knowing that they left without the answer they needed about enrolling their son in school. I finished my paperwork, obtained the certificate for my son and left. When I got to the parking lot I saw the couple standing outside their minivan, the wife's hands were flying all over the place as she was obviously and understandably upset about the whole ordeal. I quietly walked over and said "excuse me, I could not help but overhear your conversation in there, did you get the information that you needed?" The man of course replied no and the mother walked over and started signing as he translated for her. I talked with them for a few minutes trying to understand myself what it was they needed and once I was clear, I said "C'mon, let's go back in and see if we can get your answer." We walked up to the door which was locked being that so many people were still trying to get in for free or reduced child-care. They had an armed guard inside who came to the door when I knocked. I explained to him what had happened and that I was trying to help these people get the answer that they needed. He looked at me in a surprising way, almost puzzled actually and he let us in; the door locked behind us.

Someone's name had just been called by one of the clerks so I jumped into that window to ask my simple question. After a moment or two of clearly explaining what this couple needed, I had an address and phone number of where they needed to go. They had been at three different places over the course of three days trying to get an answer and nobody took the time to help them. Was it because the mother was disabled? Was it because they looked like just another welfare case? I don't know, what I do know is that it only took ME two minutes to get the answer they needed, and if it had not been for me taking the time to help them, their son may not have been able to go to school this week.

The man looked at me with warmth in his eyes and said thank you as I handed him the piece of paper with the address and phone number he needed to enroll his son in school. His wife had a huge smile on her face and signed "thank you" as I walked away. Exemplifying humility and understanding towards others and their needs is something that has become part of who I am. It has changed me, my heart and the way I think about those who may not be like me or have the privileges, the means or the opportunities that I have. I proved to myself how much I have grown as a human being and I left that parking lot feeling fantastic. The only thing that could make this story better is if I could have seen that little boys face on his first day of school!

Lesson to be learned:

"Don't turn away from a person in need, your helping hand may be what leads the way for them."


Monday, August 20, 2012

Why the Broke Stay Broke; If Only I Could Save the World:

There are several things which I observe that can really get my engines revved up if I think about them long enough; most of which have affected me directly in my past or present allowing me to relate making me feel like it is my right to have a voice in the matter. Although I see people jump on "band wagons" all of the time, personally, I only get passionate about something that I experience or have experienced myself; the only exception being if it involves a close friend or family member because in my world, that is as bad as it happening to me directly.

My 3 year old son Zane will be 4 this week and because of that he is eligible to attend a voluntary pre-kindergarten program that our state offers. It was developed so that children entering kindergarten will already know simple things like colors, shapes, how to write their names and act appropriately in a classroom prior to entering kindergarten. The 3 hours of learning is offered by day care centers and preschools that participate for free to all children who turn 4 prior to September 1st.  Being that my children have always had in-home-care, I felt it would help them get acclimated to a group environment.

Last week, as I was driving to the office where you obtain the certificate you need to attend this program I was in one of those "moods" that opens my mind up to everything around me. Being that this program is funded by the state, the office is located on the "bad" side of town which I did not realize prior to punching the address into Google maps. As I made my way to the office I had an epiphany which I will now share.

For a moment I thought of how being in areas like this usually made me feel uncomfortable; like I needed to lock my door and run for cover if I had to get out of my car, but this day was different. I became sad and angry as I looked around realizing that the people in these areas don't stand a chance. Their kids don't stand a chance... all because of the surroundings that WE put there.

My eyes bounced from street side to street corner looking at all of the businesses that were located in the area. Payday cash advance places, buy-here-pay-here car dealers, thrift stores, dollar stores, unhealthy fast food restaurants, day-labor offices, rent-to own furniture stores... basically every rip-off scam there is. When you are surrounded by desperate ways out all of your life... you are left thinking that this is how life is. You are constantly following the eight ball never getting ahead because you can't afford to. Loans at 30% interest that will help you to pay your electric bill until the next payday, car loans that give you weekly payments that equate monthly to more than what a Mercedes would cost if you had good credit or a higher paying job. Renting cheaply made but cosmetically appealing furniture which will again drain your bank account each month and before it is paid off, it falls apart. Clothing stores that sell cheaply made clothes that you are constantly having to replace because they too fall apart after a few washes. Fast food that costs you way more than groceries in the long run... but all you had at the time was $15 to feed your family.

There is no wonder why so many people are on welfare. Instead of supplying handouts to people who have been brought up to think that this is what they are supposed to do because that is what their parents did,  perhaps we should fund an education, help them learn a trade, create job fairs, classes on how to budget, shop smart and handle your finances wisely, provide clothing that will be suitable to wear in a workplace and be sure that the children know how to do the same thing. You can't possibly tell me that the people in these areas don't WANT to do better. If they were educated, they would not be buying cars at 30% interest and renting furniture that they will never own to make them appear more successful than they are, nor would they feel "adequate" when they are offered these ridiculous "opportunities".

When I arrived at the office where I had to get the certificate, there was a line of people out the door needing income based or free daycare for their children. They were turned away because there were too many people inside to serve already, and they were asked to return the next day. (more gas, more time off of work and no guarantee they would be assisted tomorrow either.) As I was escorted past the room of people waiting inside, I felt disgusted that this many people were in need of assistance, thinking to myself "this is America; this should NOT be a problem!" We are enabling them to be failures instead of helping them become successful.

If only I could save the world, I would pitch a tent in these neighborhoods and offer classes on how to get a job, how to dress for an interview, how to grocery shop on a budget and would regurgitate Dave Ramsey principals at them a million a minute until they got it. I would give them hope that despite how you grew up YOU CAN CHANGE the family cycle. Desperation is NOT the only option, and they need to know this. It was sad, and I was humbled, and as I looked at all the little faces of these children who were born into poverty, I wanted to cry. My heart is so different now than it was years ago... it has been changed by my experiences. I could relate to those desperate people because I was there once. The difference was that I knew how to change it and it was not by accepting hand outs, it was by becoming educated and making smarter decisions when it came to money.

The next time I have to go into this area of town, instead of locking my doors, perhaps I will roll down my window at a red light and speak some encouraging words to whoever is next to me. It may be just what they need to hear.

Wednesday I will share another story from this experience... with yet another lesson on humility and understanding. Until then... pass it on and pay it forward!!


Sunday, August 19, 2012

Precious Time

Where in the world does time go?  I took a break from blogging this week trying to meet a deadline for  my book and although my intention was to only take a few days off, SIX days have gone by since my last post! (I am VERY sorry to those of you who like to read me with your coffee) However I am back... and have created a new blog schedule. School starts back for the kids this week, and although I would like to think that I am Superwoman... (I have been called that in the past) reality will set in as much as in my household as everyone else's and blogging everyday as I have been doing is not something I can promise with 3 kids in school (that's a first) and all that is up and coming in my CRAZY yet exciting schedule. SO>>>> I have decided to post my inspirational/motivational/sometimes silly/sometimes on my soapbox blog on Mondays for a boost to your week, Wednesdays, for the jump over the hump, and on Fridays as an opening for a terrific weekend. 

My health and wellness blog 
will still post every Monday.

I am writing this short and sweet note tonight just to let you know the new schedule and the normal blog will post in the morning. The topic will be "Why the Broke Stay Broke", and will be a good read.

I had a terrific weekend of relaxing and coaster riding with my significant other Corey and two of my dearest friends. It was fun and I think I needed it REALLY bad. It's been busy and the next few months are going to be even busier; in my field... that's a blessing! I hope that your weekend brought you many happy things and maybe even some memories to hold onto. 

Time is precious! Enjoy every minute!

Me and my friend Lara at Universal Studio's Hard Rock Cafe' Orlando

Monday, August 13, 2012

Because What Goes Around...Comes Around

I get emails from the people I know quite often with stories they think I would like, sayings or quotes that they know I can relate to, or jokes that they know will make me laugh. We all get email fwd's but I am thankful that the people who typically send them to me screen what they send only sending to me what they know I will appreciate. Reading them is something I enjoy doing when I have a little downtime, especially when I see one with a compelling title that strikes my interest. A few weeks ago, a dear friend and client of mine (thank you Ani) sent me an email titled "What goes around comes around", and because I am such a believer in that statement, I opened it right away and read it. It just so happened to be exactly what I needed to hear that day. :)

That email has been on my mind ever since, so I decided to share the story it contained in my blog today. I feel that it holds a great lesson, a touching story and it will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy. When I read it, I got emotional because I truly related to it. I have had many struggles in my life but despite those struggles I always held true to my passion for helping others; even when I could not figure out my own situation, or when I was having a bad day. Helping someone with their problem always made mine seem less prominent and gave me hope in almost every situation that I too would eventually get the break I needed.

The past few years have been an amazingly difficult, but my mindset was in the right place and because of that, my ship has turned around 180 degrees. My persistence is finally beginning to pay off. Over the next few months I expect a whirlwind of great things and I am looking forward to being able to say "what goes around comes around" as I live it. We will always reap what we sew... get no more than we give, and almost always get MORE than we give when we do it selflessly. It is one of those amazing things that "just happens". I encourage you to always pay it forward even when you feel you have nothing to pay with because when you least expect it and likely exactly when you need it, life will surprise you with your reward.

I hope you enjoy this story as much as I did.



One day a man saw an old lady, stranded on the side of the road, but even in the dim light of day, he could see she needed help. So he pulled up in front of her Mercedes and got out. His Pontiac was still sputtering when he approached her.

Even with the smile on his face, she looked worried. No one had stopped to help for the last hour or so. Was he going to hurt her? He didn't look safe; he looked poor and hungry.

He could see that she was frightened, standing out there in the cold. He knew how she felt. It was that chill which only fear can put in you.

He said, 'I'm here to help you, ma'am. Why don't you wait in the car where it's warm? By the way, my name is Bryan Anderson.'

Well, all she had was a flat tire, but for an old lady, that was bad enough. Bryan crawled under the car looking for a place to put the jack, skinning his knuckles a time or two. Soon he was able to change the tire. But he had to get dirty and his hands hurt.

As he was tightening up the lug nuts, she rolled down the window and began to talk to him. She told him that she was from St. Louis and was only just passing through. She couldn't thank him enough for coming to her aid.

Bryan just smiled as he closed her trunk. The lady asked how much she owed him. Any amount would have been all right with her. She already imagined all the awful things that could have happened had he not stopped. Bryan never thought twice about being paid. This was not a job to him. This was helping someone in need, and God knows there were plenty, who had given him a hand in the past. He had lived his whole life that way, and it never occurred to him to act any other way.

He told her that if she really wanted to pay him back, the next time she saw someone who needed help, she could give that person the assistance they needed, and Bryan added, 'And think of me.'

He waited until she started her car and drove off. It had been a cold and depressing day, but he felt good as he headed for home, disappearing into the twilight.

A few miles down the road the lady saw a small cafe. She went in to grab a bite to eat, and take the chill off before she made the last leg of her trip home. It was a dingy looking restaurant, outside were two old gas pumps. The whole scene was unfamiliar to her. 

The waitress came over and brought a clean towel to wipe her wet hair. She had a sweet smile, one that even being on her feet for the whole day couldn't erase. The lady noticed the waitress was nearly eight months pregnant, but she never let the strain and aches change her attitude.
The old lady wondered how someone who had so little could be so giving to a stranger. Then she remembered Bryan ...

After the lady finished her meal, she paid with a hundred dollar bill. The waitress quickly went to get change for her hundred dollar bill, but the old lady slipped out the door and was gone by the time the waitress came back. The waitress wondered where the lady could be. Then she noticed something written on the napkin.

There were tears in her eyes as she read what the lady wrote: 'You don't owe me anything. I have been there too. Somebody once helped me out, the way I'm helping you. If you really want to pay me back, here is what you do, do not let this chain of love end with you.'

Under the napkin were four more $100 bills.

Well, there were tables to clear, sugar bowls to fill, and people to serve, but the waitress made it through another day. That night when she got home from work and climbed into bed, she was thinking about the money and what the lady had written. How could the lady have known how much she and her husband needed the money? With the baby due next month, it was going to be hard...

She knew how worried her husband was, as he lay sleeping next to her she gave him a soft kiss and whispered soft and low, 'Everything's going to be all right. I love you, Bryan Anderson.'

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Finishing What You Started

We all have them... those unfinished projects which haunt us and stay on our brain yet we procrastinate getting them done over and over again. We start with every intention of finishing but life gets in the way, we lose interest or simply do not have the time or resources to finish the task. So... how do we get it into gear and check those things off the list? We make a list in order of priority and make it a goal (perhaps with a reward at the end that you can invent) to check them off one by one. The key is to give yourself a date to complete it that will keep you from procrastinating and stick it somewhere that you see several times a day such as the refrigerator. There is something about writing goals down and looking at them every day that helps us strive to accomplish them. Now I am not saying that it works every time for every person. What I AM saying is that if you are not getting things accomplished that you NEED to get accomplished this is the first step to making better progress. It works way better than watching television while eating ice cream (although that sounds pretty good right now as tired as I am) only thinking about what you SHOULD be doing instead. It is one thing to have someone else disappointed in you but when you are constantly disappointing yourself you eventually give yourself a reality check. This is an example of list I recently made which I am striving to stick to.

File paperwork on desk: Deadline: (August 15th)
Clean out/re-organize garage: Deadline: (August 30th)
Re-organize file drawers: Deadline (September 15th)

 Now it may seem super silly to give yourself deadlines... but if our creditors and utility companies did not give us a deadline to pay a bill do you think we would EVER pay them? Ummm... probably not. We are not allowed to procrastinate on paying the electric bill and we should not allow ourselves to procrastinate getting things done.  If we give ourselves "due dates" for getting stuff done, we will be happier, more organized and perhaps rub off on our children; what kid does not need to be more structured and organized?

The reason I am writing about this is because people that know me are always asking me how I do everything I do. I am here to tell you that without lists like this I am USELESS. I am so conditioned to running my days from a list that if I get out of the habit of doing it I may as well be asleep because I am lost, dysfunctional, and completely out of sorts. I suppose it is like a runner or a swimmer who spends every day training for a race and when it's over and they stop the routine they don't really know what to do... so they decide to train for the next event. Same concept different training, it's all relative. (And yes, this analogy probably had something to do with the fact that the Olympics are on in the background thanks to Corey.)

Tonight, my blog may not make you laugh, (or maybe it will) and it won't make you cry (if it does seek help) or get all warm and fuzzy (although I am known for all of those things) however my hopes and purpose of writing it was to help you get on the track to getting more done. Maybe tomorrow night my mind will be sappy and inspirational as usual but today it is laser beam focused on accomplishing goals and getting things done! Here's to checking things off that list!


Sunday, August 5, 2012

31 Years Ago Today I Lost a Sister...

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Me and My Lil' Guy... A Funny Story!

After I got home from my studio this evening the kids were dying for my attention so I decided to do something that is VERY hard for me to do... I unplugged. I asked Corey to turn off the TV (which I am totally okay with! ) hid my cell phone and laptop and sat in the floor to do flash cards with Zane and Brie. We did shapes, c
olors and alphabet sounds. It was so cute watching Brie try and mimic us. I put Brie to bed shortly after and sat down to play Play-Dough with Zane; he had me make a turtle, a shark and a hot dog.

He then decided that we were having so much fun that we should now play "bad guy" and shoot his Nerf guns at the bad guys so... I gave in and we played bad guy. We switched gears again and the whole family... (other than the sleeping Brie boo) played hide and seek indoors. THAT was a blast even though I lost every time because I never made it to home base without getting tagged. :(

As I tucked Zane in tonight and read him a story... it was not enough, he asked for another to which I decided to just make a funny one up. He giggled... a LOT. I kissed him and with those batting lashes he then asked if I would sing him a song like I always do and I said sure ... which song do you want me to sing "Goodnight Sweetheart" or "Sunshine On My Shoulders"? (these are the two songs that I have sung to him at bedtime since he was born) To which he replied "Hmmm, how bout Sexy and I know It or wiggle wiggle wiggle". LOL

May you sleep well tonight and "wiggle wiggle wiggle" your way into dreamland! HAHAHA


"Sometimes your time is all that a child needs" ©2012 Shelley Giard
 I need to post this to my forehead!!

Me and my lil' man!

"Live Your Dreams by Sharing Your Talents"

We have all been given talents, some of us have several, and some of us have only one that may stand out in our mind; but we ALL have them. Do you use them? Have you figured out what they are? Do you have something that you have always wanted to do but fear kept you from doing it? I am here to tell you that using your talents to do things you have always wanted to do despite your fears and reservations, is something that will put your mind in a place to guide you to accomplishment. It's never too late to live your dreams. If you are in your 50's, 60's, even your 70's and your dream was to be a dancer on Broadway, you may not get to Broadway, but setting out to do it anyway will make you a happier person because you have purpose and will be doing what you love; THAT is priceless. You can take dance lessons, you can sing, you can draw, paint, build, tell jokes, at any age. It takes drive, ambition, determination and courage to fulfill your dreams by using your given talents. Courage is what holds most of us back... that and the fear of failure. We are easily talked out of things by our friends and family when what we are dreaming of seems silly or unrealistic to them. We let it go thinking they are probably right... WRONG.

Use your talents, add life to each day with them and share them with others so that they too may enjoy what you love and what you are passionate about. It's what we are supposed to do, should do; don't let anything hold you back. I teach this to my kids, talk about it to the people I know, and regurgitate it throughout my blogs and social media sites because I have been lucky enough to muddle through many trenches, climbed many mountains and jumped thousands of hurdles to live out my dreams. I am not to my final destination yet but I will tell you that the accomplishments in my journey thus far have been amazing and worth every blood drip, sweat puddle and tear roll. It IS worth it, I promise. Having purpose means everything, and when you have everything... what you don't have seems like nothing.

Today I am sharing the talents of a few members of my family with you 

My twenty-year-old daughter Cierra lives in Colorado, she is an amazing kid who is putting herself through college, and works her "patootie" off to support herself. After one year at CU, she changed her path and gave up her $180K ROTC scholarship to live out her dreams, even if it meant she had to pay her own way. She has made me SO proud. She now plans to attend RMCAD next year for a degree in commercial design and illustration after getting her "formality" classes out of the way at a local community college. She LOVES photography and although she has had little training outside of attending Photoshop World a time or two, she is really good. (yes, I am a bit partial but I am also realistic.) Being my daughter... miss "I was born an entrepreneur", she is following in my footsteps even though she has much smaller feet. She now shares her beautiful landscape and nature photography online in hopes of selling a few prints to help her through college. Take a look and share her page with anyone who may love what she does. (or who may need an apprentice or photography assistant out there.) Here is her site:

Next in line is my baby brother Aaron, although his day job is in graphic/web design, he is also a very talented musician, recording artist, lyricist, songwriter/composer; his true passion lies here. His apple does not fall far from our family tree... I sing too, as well as my mom. My dad sings and plays guitar, and my oldest brother plays drums, (just call us the Partridge family). He is doing everything he can while working full time and being a family man to achieve his musical dreams of being a recording artist. It's hard... and I know what it's like to juggle more balls than you can handle but I know he can do it if he just keeps going. He is talented and he shares his talents with others, and now I am sharing them with you. These are two of my favorite solo Youtube videos he has up which were recorded in his studio at his home solely by him.

Phil Collins In the Air Tonight Acoustic cover by Aaron Giard

Three Days Grace I Hate Everything About You Acoustic cover by Aaron Giard

(Search Aaron Giard  or Red Letter Suite  for more)

I hope you enjoy what I have shared and if you do, I encourage you to share it with others. I hope that maybe you were also inspired, or at least made you think of what your dreams really are.We are all in this game of life together and if we pat each other on the back, give words of encouragement anytime we can and share what we love with others this world will be a much better place. 

Thanks for stopping by! Come back soon, I post almost every day!