There’s Always A Lesson 

As 2016 comes to an end, I reflect on the lessons I’ve learned about myself and others. These lessons have been eye openers. Each lesson has caused me to grow, made me stronger and continued to shape me into the woman I am right now.
I realize that even though these lessons hurt I am not mad at anyone. It is what it is. I sleep well at night because I treat people the way I want to be treated. As difficult as it has been, I have remained consistent in how I treat others.

The lessons I’ve learned are in no particular order of importance. However, each lesson has defined me and played a significant role in my most recent development.

When I need encouraging, I have to encourage myself. As much as I have encouraged others, I didn’t receive that in return. I had some valley experiences that I had to encourage myself because that same gift I have to recognize when others need encouragement wasn’t operating in the lives of those that I encountered on a daily basis. Encouraging myself caused me to rely more on God than people.

It doesn’t matter how nice I am to others, there will always be someone that doesn’t like me. I used to care. I used to wonder why doesn’t this person like me, what could I do to make him or her like me or what did I do to cause him or her not to like me? This past year I’m over caring about how others feel about me. I can’t be responsible for someone else’s feelings. I’m going to be me.

People that I considered my friends did not feel the same way about me. This lesson was a shock to my system, and begin to cause me to build a familiar wall of protection around myself. This wall would lead to me separating myself from others.

As I was taking a shower one morning, God reminded me that He made me different from others. That difference is what allows me to be so transparent and open to others. This realization destroyed the wall, and replaced it with a greeter assurance of who I am.

This year has included some ups and downs, but I won’t complain. I’m still here. I lived, I learned and I grew. I’m looking forward to 2017 with great expectation!

46 Life Lessons I’ve Learned…


Today is my birthday and I was reflecting on the life lessons I’ve learned over the past 46 years. All of these lessons have truly molded and shaped me into the woman I am today.

These life lessons are not listed in order of importance, and there’s a story behind each lesson.

1. I have to love myself.

2. I’m my own Stan (fan)!

3. Sometimes I have to encourage myself.

4. God has to be a priority in my life.

5. Family is important.

6. Treat others the way I want to be treated.

7. Forgiveness frees me.

8. I can do bad by myself.

9. I know my worth.

10. Common sense will get you further than book sense.

11. Don’t lie.

12. Integrity is important.

13. Word is bond.

14. Be careful of the company you keep.

15. Be a good friend.

16. It’s not always about me.

17. Karma is real.

18. My husband is my best friend.

19. Happiness is a choice.

20. My life has purpose.

21. Hell is real.

22. Be authentic.

23. Live a life without regrets.

24. Stress kills.

25. Be informed 

26. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.

27. Read on a regular basis.

28. Be open to constructive criticism.

29. Travel as often as I can.

30. Invest in myself.

31. Enjoy life to the fullest.

32. Pray.

33. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

34. Cultivate friendships 

35. Don’t let anyone misuse me.

36. Be honest.

37. Laugh often

38. Have a sense of humor.

39. Don’t be judgmental.

40. It okay to say I’m sorry.

41. Everybody will not like me.

42. Sex is good.

43. Be a good parent.

44. Be trustworthy.

45. Don’t go to bed angry.

46. Eat something you’ve never eaten before.

Cheers to these life lessons, and I can’t wait for the next 46 more! Happy Birthday to me!

Life Lesson From A Six Year Old


My daughter and I were discussing politics with my granddaughter. My granddaughter wouldn’t listen to us telling her she wasn’t old enough to vote. My daughter kept messing with her until my granddaughter calmly said TCOB.
We immediately asked, “What is TCOB?” She said, “Take Care of Your Own Business.” We laughed! I asked her, “Where did you learn that?” She said, “From my teacher at school. That’s what we say when somebody is in our business.” I said, “When you say TCOB, what does the person do?” She said, “They get out of your business.”

What an awesome life lesson for a six-year-old! She’s already learning to mind her own business, while keeping people out of her business. She’s being taught how to positively communicate what could be considered negative feedback to some.

Taking Care of Your Own Business requires focus and determination. If I’m taking care of my business, I don’t have time to focus on your business.

The next time someone tries to be in your business just tell them

Friends – How Many Of Us Have Them?

I’m convinced that a lot of people don’t know how to be a friend. They don’t understand the actions or inactions of a friend. Essentially, if asked to describe what a friend looks like, they would fail.

Let me tell you what a friend is not. A friend is not someone that has to pledge allegiance only to you. A friend is not someone that has to dislike who you dislike and like who you like. These mean girl terms of friendships should’ve disappeared when we left elementary school. It’s unfortunate that some of us are still mean girls. We are frozen in time and have yet to mature into adulthood.

My BFF and I rarely have a phone conversation. We send random text from time to time. However, when we are fortunate to get together, it’s as if we have never been apart. The conversation continues like we have always been talking. I know that she has my back and I have hers. There’s no denying our bond

If you have friends or friends, you are fortunate. Treasure and cultivate those friendships. Don’t take them for granted. Some of you may wonder do you have any friends. Here are five signs that the people you are hanging with are not your friends.

1. They let you walk around all day with a visible booger in your nose for everyone to see.

2. They don’t tell you your breath stinks, or that you have a foul body odor.

3. They talk about you negatively to others.

4. They know you need a fashion makeover, but they just continue to let you look a hot mess in public.

5. They don’t tell you the truth. They would rather let you think you are right instead of calling you out on your foolishness.

If you have people in your life that fit these “friendship” signs, you need to let those people go. They are harmful to your positive growth. They are not adding any value to your life.

Whodini’s lyrics to the song “Friends” provides a great conclusion to defining a friend.  Here’s just some of the lyrics:

Friends, how many of us have them?

Friends, ones we can depend on

Friends, how many of us have them?

Friends, before we go any further

Lets be friends

Is a word we use everyday

Most the time we use it in the wrong way

Now you can look the word up, again and again

But the dictionary doesn’t know the meaning of friends

And if you ask me, you know, I couldn’t be much help

Because a friend is somebody you judge for yourself

Some are okay, and they treat you real cool

But some mistake kindness for bein’ a fool

We like to be with some, because they’re funny

Others come around when they need some money

Some you grew up with, around the way

And you’re still real close too this very day

Homeboys through the summer, winter, spring and fall

And then there’s some we wish we never knew at all

And this list goes on, again and again

But these are the people that we call friends

Read more at http://www.songlyrics.com/whodini/friends-lyrics/#Juo467wHjoTCvX8u.99

Rules To Live By


I thank God I’ve survived so far and made most decisions using common sense. Common sense is priceless.

I just want to help others that may need need assistance navigating this journey called life.   These rules are not listed in any order of importance because they are all important.  Here’s some rules to live by:

Don’t burn bridges – 9 times out of 10 you’re going to need that person again.

Listen to your elders – you’ll have less headaches, heartaches and stress.

Practice good work ethics.

Don’t quit a job before you have the next job.

You are responsible for your own happiness. Don’t buy into this romance movie happiness that includes statements like “you complete me.”

Don’t have sex with folks that just look good. Are they responsible? If a child results, will you have to put out an APB for them to help with the child? Would you want this woman to be the mother of your child? Do you want this person in your life for the rest of your life?

Don’t have sex in every relationship.  Is there a rule you have to have sex? Everybody ain’t worthy – ijs.

Surround yourself with folks that encourage and support you.

Learn how to be a real friend. Once you learn the real meaning, you may find out the folks you’ve been saying are on your squad are not on your squad.

Have a personal relationship with God. Give Him some of your time. He’s worthy.

*photo created by Samuel Zeller

For My Daughter…

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I was thinking about a letter I wrote to my daughter in 2007, before she went to college.  I asked her for this letter, and then remembered I kept a copy of my flash drive.  This letter continues to be timely, and maybe it will inspire you to have a much needed conversation with your children, or maybe you need some inspiration.  There are some grammar errors in this letter, but I decided to not change anything about the letter.

August 13, 2007

9:28PM

Kendra,

Where do I begin?  It seems like yesterday you were biting people at church (lol)!  The years have gone by so fast.  Who would have thought we would be at this time so quickly in your life??  I am so happy and excited for you!  This is a major milestone in your life.  Off to college.

I am typing this letter to you because I want you to keep it and reflect on it those times when you may seem to forget what you focus is for going to college.  When temptation is presented and you don’t know if you can resist the temptation.  Grab this letter and read it quickly!  There are so many things I want to tell you.  Some last minute “nuggets” to help you along the way.  Well, here goes:

IF YOU DON’T REMEMBER ANYTHING I HAVE TAUGHT YOU, REMEMBER THESE TOP 10 THINGS:

10.  Be true to yourself – Don’t let anyone stop you from being who you are.  Don’t wear mask or be phony – be Kendra.

9.  Have fun – you will have to have a balance between fun and school.  Too much fun will be reflected in your grades. Too little fun and you will not be a happy person.  You have to figure out that balance for yourself.

8.  Boyfriends – I know you feel you are in love.  Well, remember that you have to put love in perspective.  Anyone who wants to be with you will understand the need for you to get off the phone, the computer, whatever means you all communicate.  That person will be happy for you and be content in the fact that when it’s all said and done you are still with them.  Any boy that doesn’t have your best interest at heart is not worth your time.  Any boy who has no goals or aspirations to achieve success is not worth your time.  You need someone who shares the same goals, aspirations and dreams that you have for life.

7.  Sex – We have talked about this subject.  For the record I will state my stance – no sex until you are married.  If you decide to have sex, I pray you weigh out the consequences and see if that moment is worth your future.  That’s all it takes is one mistake and your entire future can be altered.  You say you want to be a doctor.  Well, you have to live your life like you want to be a doctor.  There will be plenty of time to have sex when you get married.  There’s nothing like being able to have as much sex as you want and not have to be concerned about the risk of pregnancy, disease or death.  It’s never to late to decide to abstain.  Anytime you want to you can decide that you are going to wait until you are married to have sex.

6. Friends – everyone is not your friend or will want to be your friend.  People will dislike you because you are beautiful and smart.  Recognize when people are trying to use you.  Get to know people before you share your private information.  Don’t let people in your room until you feel you can trust them.  I say meet them in the lounge.  Some people will want to come into your room just to see what you have.

5.  Alcohol – Don’t ever leave a drink sitting and come back and drink it. I don’t care who is sitting there.  When I say drink I mean any type of drink.  Never drive after drinking.  Don’t ride with anyone who has had a drink. Don’t trust your life to anyone who has had any alcohol.  I don’t care how “okay” they may seem.  Don’t take a chance.

4.  Seat belt – WEAR IT!

3.  Intuition – If you feel something isn’t right, even if you don’t understand it; follow your intuition.  If you feel like you shouldn’t go a certain way, don’t.  If you feel like you shouldn’t do something, don’t.  Follow your intuition.

2.  Classes – If you don’t understand something – ask!  This is money we are spending to get a good education!  Make that teacher earn every dime.  Don’t wait until test time to say you don’t understand.  Get the help you need ASAP.  Get to know people.  If you need a study group, take the initiative and form one; because if you need help there is probably someone else who needs help too.

1.  God – You’re going to need Him!  Pray as much as possible.  Let Him lead and guide you.  He won’t lead you wrong.  God is the key to you being successful.  He said “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be added unto you.” Take your Bible with you.  Read it!  Go to church as much as you can.  Church is where you will gain the strength you need to make it.  You need to give God 10% of your time, just like you give him 10% of your money.  You owe Him that!

I am here for you. You can tell me anything.  Don’t ever forget that!  I love you and I am going to miss you.  I’m sad but I’m happy for this next phase of your life.  So many people are in your corner and cheering you on.  I’m sure you can tell from all the gifts and money you received.  People are praying for you to be successful.  I don’t want you to get sidetracked.  Stay focused.  I don’t want you to have to come home because you made a bad decision that alters your future.  Every decision you make now affects your very future.  Please remember that.  Before you do anything, think about the positive and negative consequences.  If it’s too many negatives, it’s not worth it!

You are beautiful, gifted, talented and intelligent!  You are going to be successful!

I will be praying continuously for you!

Much love,

Your Mom.

What do you wish your parents had told you before you left home?

“Image courtesy of mrpuen / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”.

The Friend Code

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I’m convinced that some people do not know the definition of the word friend, and do not know how to be an authentic friend. To understand the lack of friendship principles of others would require a different post and more time. I was reviewing the various friends that have or still are in my life, and I created some friend categories.

The Needy Friend – we all have these type of friends. You only hear from them during a crisis, drama or when they want you to do them a “favor.” You know when their world is cohesive because they are MIA in your text and call logs.

The It’s All About Me Friend – whenever you talk to them the conversation revolves around their life. Anything you say they have a way if making it about them. If you call them because you need to vent, they end up taking over the conversation and it becomes their vent session.

The I’m Busy Friend – this is the friend who never makes time for their friends. They are always too busy. They neglect the friendship by not investing any time in the friendship. Oh, but let them enter a crisis phase! They answer your calls on the first ring. Before you complete your text, they are texting you!

The Talk Too Much Friend – they can’t keep a secret to save their life. They tell everything. If you want the word to be disseminated, this is who you tell. This is the entertaining friend. You always have a good time with this friend!

The I Have A Man/Woman Friend – whenever they have a man/woman in their lives, they kick ALL of their friends to the curb! They can’t go anywhere with you anymore because they spend all of
their free time with their man/woman. You won’t hear from them until there is trouble in paradise…

The I Got Yo Back Friend – this is the friend we all need. Their picture should be posted by the word friend. They are a confidant, advocate and will tell you when you’re wrong. You don’t have to talk every day, but when you do it’s like the comversation never stopped. They have your best interest at heart. If you need someone to pray, they are the one. A real friend.

Take a real assessment of yourself and determine what kind of friend are you. If you want to know the truth, ask your friends. Now, what actions are you going to take to be a better friend?

*Image courtesy of stockimages*