Chapter 47 of the Book “Annjanette”

Tonight is the last night I will be 47 years old. The night before my birthday I always reflect on the year. I think about my trials, tribulations and triumphs. My goal is to be s better me every year, and vow to not let the same things that caused me to stumble this year, cause me to stumble next year.
I have dealt with some things that I have never dealt with before, and some things that I thought I would never have to deal with again. I look back in amazement that I’m still standing. Like Marvin Sapp says in his song “Never Would’ve Made It.”

I’m stronger, I’m wiser

I’m better, much better

When I look back over all you brought me through

I can see that you were the one I held on to

The you that I held on to is God. I don’t know how anyone can navigate life without Him. I’ve been through some things this year that I could have legit lost my mind, BUT GOD said not so!! 

I took control of my health for real this past year. Not how I had done in the past, but with consistency. Little steps turned into bigger steps and now I see my progress. I’ve lost 75lbs so far!


I’m trying to live a life of quality not quantity. I don’t want to live a long time aided by medication. I want a quality life that includes living life to the fullest while healthy. 

As I reflect, I have no regrets. Every test has become a part of my story. My story shows the essence of Annjanette. My story has helped develop the strong, God-fearing confident woman I am today.

I’m ready for Chapter 48 of the book titled “Annjanette.”

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!

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”.