Family Values

I’ve become such a bleeding heart when it comes to children. I believe they deserve so much better than what they are given at times, and I wish I could help them all! My maternal insticts are so strong and kick in so hard whenever a situation includes children. 

My husband and I were watching a movie the other day, and the child was treated poorly. It literally broke my heart! If you know me, you know I’m not much of a crier, but I bawled like a baby! Silly hormones! They are just so innocent, and if given a chance, they could accomplish so much.

People are so concerned with the adults in any given situation. Like, oh, Tom and June are getting divorced, or Mark and Mary are going through a hard time. If there are children involved, I think the conversation should look more like: are Timmy and Julie doing well with the divorce? Are Mikey and Missy getting enough to eat?

When did family values start to exclude the well-being of the child? And when did Hollywood start exploiting the subtraction of the total members of the family until? When did we stop noticing, or stop caring?

I hope true family values come back in style. These children are the future, and they deserve the best chance at making this world a better place.

FLO Vitamins Review

I am a huge proponent of taking vitamin supplements. Unfortunately, most people’s diets no longer consist of the nutrients needed for a well rounded diet. In recent years, there has been more of a focus on eating green and less processed meals. However, for most of us, there are still gaps in our nutritional needs. Supplementing those needs with vitamins is a great way to meet your bodies needs.

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I am also a careful tracker. I don’t mean calories or weight, which I probably should be, but neither here nor there on this topic. I carefully track my cycles, their length, and any abnormalities in my hormonal health. Ever since I was a teen, my hormones would wreck havoc on my mind, body, and cycle. To this day, I still have flare ups with my hormones. I have tried conventional means such as birth control or other medicinal paths, but nothing has ever seemed to tame my acne, PMS, or cycle discomfort.

Through my careful tracking, I came across the FLO app, a way to track your cycle and many other symptoms that may be related to it. This app is crucial to knowing when to be ready for Aunt Flo and any prefacing symptoms my family should take shelter from. I love this app! It is a big help in the doctor’s office whenever they ask that famous question: When was your last cycle? It’s also a great tool to help talk to your doctor about any concerns you’ve had throughout the months.

But, one of it’s newest features is AI. The AI tool will actually give you tips on where you are in your cycle, such as you may feel happy, weak, or energized today. They even give exercise programs, ways to manage your symptoms, and alerts on when to talk to your doctor on any reported feelings. It’s a great app!

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While this is all great, what I would like to highlight today is a new product FLO has debuted called, FLO PMS Relief Gummy Vitamins. It’s been three months, almost three cycles, and I have to say, I like these vitamins. The flavor is amazing, but I wish they didn’t have so much sugar. I find it odd that these vitamins claim to help acne, but then have so much sugar per serving. Disclaimer: my acne has gotten a lot better since starting these, though! Texture, size, shape, and color are all great; no complaints there. They are soft, easy to chew, and smooth on the way down.

The most important claim to these vitamins for me are how they are supposed to make you feel throughout your cycle. After almost three now, I can report my cycles are seeming to be a bit better as far as pain and discomfort. The PMS portion seems to be shorter, as of now, and I feel like I’m not so irritable as long as I used to be. Overall, whether a placebo effect or not, these vitamins do seem to be helping! I hope more benefits come as I continue to take them!

Ben Brainard – Comedian

I know we have all suffered in some form during this pandemic. No matter what the impact, I hate how it is effecting all of our lives. From the elderly to the infants, it seems this virus has touched us all. And, while most of the impact of Coronavirus is horrible, there have been a few silver linings in this storm.

When COVID first started, we went into lock down. We stayed home for two weeks straight and started only leaving the house if we really had to. We tried to find ways to pass the time, and one of those ways was nightly dance parties with DJ Kopec! It was a fun relief to a continuous relive of the same day, over and over. I truly appreciate his work and getting us through those first few months!

After this virus stuck around for a while, we felt a bit more safe going out into the world with masks and social distance and enhanced cleaning. We’d go to parks, home improvement stores, box stores. We felt safer, but were still cautious to maintain the safe guards we knew could help protect us. Even though we tried to keep going with life, the weight of COVID still hung heavy. Finding new ways to keep our minds off it, we took to YouTube.

Enter Ben Brainard!

I stumbled upon Ben as I was traversing the internet, looking for anything remotely entertaining to watch after literally depleting our streaming services of content. One of his videos popped up, and honestly, with all the politics that were going around at the time, I really wasn’t interested in more. I’m pretty sure I scrolled over his videos the first time. When I found it again, I read the description and went all in.

Maryland Joins the Table – with a title like that I just couldn’t ignore it! Living in the DC metro area, I had to hear his take on Maryland. I was NOT disappointed! From the way he pronounces the state name, to his attire, even the mention of a Natty Boh. I had tears! From that moment forward, I have watched each of his videos for Joins the Table, and have started to move on to his Mail Time and Stand Up shows. I absolutely love his laugh!

Thank you Ben for the comedic relief I didn’t know I needed. Hearing the craziness from all the different parts of the country makes me feel as if my little square of the world isn’t so messed up. I’ve learned so much about other states from your videos I never knew. Thanks again Ben! And keep on going!

The Empty Feeling Doesn’t Last Forever

There are very few people I’ve told. It’s not something I like to talk about. I deal with it in my own way. When I was a teenager, it was at its worst. As I’ve gotten older, there are still moments I feel it strongly, but I’ve learned how to better cope. Every now and then, I get stuck and it takes a while to break out of it.

Today has been one of those days where it’s taking a bit to pull myself out of it.

I used to suffer from depression. Now, I can better cope and work through my emotions without the suffering. It is still a process, but I am no where near where I was.

I went undiagnosed as a teenager. I struggled hard. There were very few who knew how deep my depression was. They would catch glimpses, but I was good at brushing off concerns. How I wish I would have asked for help. Maybe I would have learned sooner how to deal with it.

After years of struggling, I began to find what my triggers were, learned how to push through them, and keep them from sending me spiraling in the future. Again, it took years to get better at fighting my depression, but I am so glad I finally got help and stabilized my mental health.

Learn from me. It doesn’t hurt to ask for help. Break the stigma. No matter what mental condition you may have, there is a way through it to a better you. I’ve experienced it in myself and in others. I promise, the empty feeling doesn’t last forever.


Virtual hug 🤗

Netflix: Julie and the Phantoms

You know those television shows that used to be good, family centric, wholesome entertainment? Whatever happened to those? The shows that left you feeling good from start to end. The shows that have conflict enough to feel like real life, but never too much to actually wear you down like life can. I MISS THOSE SHOWS!

There’s enough drama and chaos in my life without adding to it with real or fictional characters from a television show. Honestly, one of the reasons I was happy to cut the cord from cable television was the lack of anything wholesome and the abundance of DRAMA.

But, every now and then, you run into a familiar feeling in a show, like a memory from years ago. The show is happy, but gently tainted with conflict. The climax isn’t overbearing and burdensome, but it’s more than enough to keep you hooked.

That’s Julie and the Phantoms!

An original Nickelodeon show in Brazil, Netflix bought the rights to the Julie e os Phantasmos series. They have taken some liberties with the show, changing some details from the original story, but it is a great adaptation! The whole family will enjoy it!

Melissa Reyes (Julie) has an amazing voice. She’s only sixteen! I can’t wait to see how she develops as she ages. She reminds me of a youthful Alicia Keys with her piano skills and voice range.

Charlie Gillespie is another surprise! He’s phenomenal in the show! Did I mention cute? Oh, major crush over here. His sound also reminds me of my punk music days. Man, whatever happened to Yellowcard?

The music is fantastic in this show! My entire family will break out into song with this soundtrack at any minute throughout the day. The three of us have really enjoyed the show.

Unfortunately, Netflix hasn’t renewed the show as of yet, but I am beyond hopeful they will soon! It’s just too good not to give them another season. We could all use a good, lighthearted family series right about now.

Grow, Little Girl – a poem

My daughter, you are growing.

You aren’t a baby anymore.

And while I long for those days,

Holding you in my arms,

Staring into your wondering eyes,

I have never felt so connected to you.

You are growing, my sweet,

Into a beautiful little girl

Full of life, love, and happiness.

You amaze me with your smart mind

And strong heart.

I have no doubt you will do big things.

Promise me, my brave girl,

That you will not be afraid to become

The woman I know you can be.

I will always be here.

I will always stretch my arms wide

And protect you from the world,

But it is the world who needs you now.

When you are ready,

I hope you grow, little girl,

And take on this world,

For your determined heart and strong mind

Will be the strength it needs to


A Writer’s Brain

I have been trying so hard to find the time to write. I know, it isn’t an excuse. If it was something I really wanted to do, I would find the time, right? I am truly trying. These stories in my head won’t get written without me, but currently, I am juggling so much. It’s hard trying to make the one thing I love to do in a world of have to do‘s a priority. Being a wife and mother; working full time; taking my daughter to school, daycare, and dance class; house chores; the demands are endless.

What I have come to find is when I haven’t written in a while, the stories I have outlined either on paper or in my head start pushing to the forefront of my thoughts. They begin to play out in my mind’s eye, developing the characters, building details. I start to see a clear picture in my mind of all I want to put on paper. Then when it is time to sit down and write, all those beautifully built ideas vanish!

I’m starting to carry around a notebook because, at this point, I need to start writing these things down as they occur.

Perfect example: last night, I had this vivid dream of a dramatic story line. I don’t think it is something that anyone would want to read, but the premise of the drama and some of the dialog may feed some other projects. As soon as I awoke, I began to write them in my new notebook, and hopefully, I won’t forget I wrote them down. I guess my next task will be to organize the notes I do take.

It never ends.

I hope that one of these days I get the time I desperately desire to write all that is in my mind. I mean, I have a third novel in the Guardians trilogy I need to get in print! I make no other commitment to this year than to find time to write. Hopefully, with no other expectations for myself, this will be an easy win!

Freeze – A Poem

Forget me not, warm air;

A golden streak in the sky.

Forget me, frozen cheeks,

as my breath floats high.

Remember me, bright sun,

when you travel farther south.

Remember me not, bleak grayness;

these days run long and dark.

For when you return, sweet summer,

I reveal in every day you were missed.

For when you leave, cold winter,

I won’t mourn your departure.