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March–It is all about CELEBRATING WOMEN!

Wednesday, March 31st, 2021
March is an important month for women around the world!  It prompts us to pause, reflect and celebrate the contributions of women throughout history and the decades of struggle for equality.
On March 8th every year we commemorate International Women’s Day, a global celebration of the political, social, and economic achievements of women that began many years ago on March 8, 1911.
March is also designated Women’s History Month, a celebration of the contributions women have made through the years in the areas of history, culture, and society.  This was first celebrated in Sonoma, California in 1978 with hundreds of students participating in a “Real Woman” essay contest and a parade in downtown Santa Rosa.  A few years later, President Jimmy Carter declared the week of March 8 as National Women’s History Week, and the U.S. Congress passed a resolution establishing a national celebration.   The National Women’s History Project later made a petition to Congress to expand this celebration to include the whole month of March.
We don’t have to look far today in 2021 to find women leaders around the world.  Women continue to push forward to break barriers in all areas of science, sports, the arts, medicine, government, and the military.  It is an exciting time to be a woman and encourage our younger generations of females to dream big, reach for the stars, and never-ever settle.  I remember as a young Mom many decades ago telling my own two daughters to “follow your dreams, there are NO limits!”  Now, I am saying those same words to my granddaughters.  It is essential to foster this sense of empowerment in our very youngest as they develop and grow into strong women.  Mentoring future generations of women is the responsibility of all of us as we model for younger females that women are soaring to career heights like never before, literally!
 One of my favorite examples of this is the story of the FIRST all-female flyover on February 2, 2019 to honor the first ever female fighter pilot, Retired Captain Rosemary Marinar at her memorial service.
Captain Marinar was a true trailblazer and her list of achievements is long and beyond impressive.  In addition, she personally mentored young military women in their careers including many of the pilots who were involved in her memorial service flyover.   Although Captain Rosemary Marinar has left this earth to soar in the Heavens, her legacy will continue to fuel the dreams of countless young women as they embark on careers in aviation and the military.
My passion for women’s empowerment continues every single day in my professional and my personal life.  We are all here on this earth for a purpose, and I have always felt that making a difference in the lives of women was what I have been called to do.  Recently, I had the pleasure to be a guest on a podcast hosted by Kami Guildner of EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN RADIO.   We talked about the gift of female friendship and how to feel empowered during these challenging times in the pandemic.  Kami is an experienced host and we had a productive discussion that I highly recommend checking out our interview which is here on my website under MEDIA.
One final thought for you———
In honor of all of the women in our world who show up everyday to make a difference, give of themselves for the benefit of others, and get into the trenches to promote a cause larger than themselves, don’t ever give up!
We are reaching high into the galaxies of opportunity finally, something that our great-grandmothers only dreamed of!  In 2021, the future for females has never been brighter!
We have never been stronger, more bold, or more fired-up than we are now!
Let’s model this empowerment for the youngest amongst us. It was sweet music to my ears when I recently heard my 3 year old Granddaughter, Charlotte, proudly proclaim to me, “I am BRAVE!”
YES, WE ARE!

Embracing Light, Love, & Life

Monday, February 1st, 2021

The past year has been unprecedented in every category.  It has left us longing for our former lives and the pre-pandemic world we knew as “normal.”  And the critical question now is…….how do we get back to our old lives, back to our loved ones, back to our jobs, back to vacations, and the endless list of routines we have had to give up the past many months in the name of survival.  Have hope, we will get there, we are already on our way!

 

Nobody would question that for most of the world we have been living in a much darker time in history since COVID-19 began its reign of death and destruction.  It has been a time of kicking into “survival” mode for most of us.  It has taken its toll on mental health with rates of anxiety, depression, and suicide ticking up like nothing we have seen in our lifetimes.  Most of us now share the universal experience of being deprived— deprived of time with our family and friends, sharing holidays, social gatherings, milestone events, and celebrations.  The stories we hear of those who have lost loved ones are heartbreaking and tragic, and only reinforce how fragile life is and how much we miss our own family and friends that we have been separated from for nearly a year!

 

So, how do we go forward and where do we find hope in the midst of this? 

The answer is found in the light coming from the beacon of hope for a healthier, happier, and safer tomorrow.   As the masses around the world become vaccinated and we are able to come out of quarantine, we will be able to resume time with our loved ones, and move towards our old lives again, although with the necessary precautions in place as needed.   Medical science has offered us a “ticket” on the train to reconnection with those that matter most to us, our family, friends, and the things we hold dear.  It is this science that has provided the light that will allow us to once again hug our elderly parents, kiss our precious grand babies, celebrate birthdays with our family, and raise a glass with our best friends.  

 We are on our way and the light is growing brighter and bigger with each passing day.  Just as the lighthouse guides a ship through the fog at night, the brilliance of science has provided a beacon of light to our world that will guide us back to the calmer, safer waters we once knew.   Look up!    The LIGHT is shining on the path back to LOVE and the LIFE we have missed.  HOPE is here!

 

THANK A VETERAN TODAY!

Wednesday, November 11th, 2020
Our last time on a plane was in March before COVID changed the world. A couple days before leaving for this trip I decided to buy a dozen Starbuck’s gift cards to tuck in my purse, ready to hand out and “THANK” any men and women wearing a military uniform or a Vet wearing a commemorative war cap.   I noticed an older gentleman about the age of my own Father wearing a Korean War cap seated behind us on the plane.  After our plane landed in Las Vegas, we were walking up the ramp and I reached out my hand to shake his. I asked him, “You served in the Korean War, Sir?”  He smiled proudly and replied “Yes, ma’am, I did!.”   I said, “Thank you for your service, Sir” and handed him one of my Starbuck’s gift cards that I had written a thank you message on— “THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE, WE ARE GRATEFUL.”  He looked at the gift card, and looked up at me smiling.  He gave me a huge hug, a kiss on the cheek and said “Oh my goodness, I cannot believe this!”  I wished him safe travels and walked away with a heart full of joy that in a very small way, I had made a difference in someone’s day, especially our Veteran’s who have given us so much!
On this Veteran’s Day of 2020, let’s find a way to honor and thank those who have served, as well as their families who stand behind them!  They sacrifice too!
I have many relatives in my family who have served in the military and today belongs to them.  THANK YOU!
 My “favorite” Vet would have to be my own daughter, who was in the Navy for 19 years, Lt. Commander, Brandi Milmo. After completing two years at Baylor in pre-med she took the road less traveled and decided her
dream was to attend the Naval Academy, where she started over as new freshman (plebe), completing 4 more rigorous years of college in Annapolis.
She served as a flight surgeon after graduating from the Naval Academy in 2004 and completing medical school in Texas.  Brandi balanced being a Mom of two young babies, a wife, and a dedicated Navy doctor and somehow made it all work so successfully, despite the challenges of geography and distance that comes with military life.
I was and will forever be a very proud NAVY MOM!
Thank you, Lt. Commander Brandi, for your service!
Thank you, to all of our dedicated Veteran’s, YOU are our true Heroes!
HAPPY VETERAN’S DAY and may God bless you always!

 

Share That You CARE!

Wednesday, July 15th, 2020
Now, more than ever, we are in a pattern of disconnect and isolation due to our shelter-in-place and COVID quarantine requirements.   For most people this new lifestyle has become the norm now for nearly 4 months and people are feeling the effects of this, there is no doubt!    We are all missing that human connection we crave.  The studies tell us we live our healthiest, happiest and longest lives when we are in fellowship with others.
None of us know how long it will be until our lives can return to normalcy but we do know the time to reach out to others who may be suffering is now!   If you have family, friends, or neighbors who live alone or are feeling lonely, reach out to them today!   Sending a card in the mail to cheer them up goes a very long way to help people feel affirmed and valued and most importantly, loved.  At the least, even a text message, or a phone call can make someone’s day very special.  If you live near them, drop off some cookies on their front porch (still keeping the guidelines of social distancing).
 In these COVID times we especially need to be focused on others and reaching out to spread the message—“YOU ARE NOT ALONE.”
Make a difference today—
Be someone’s beacon of light and hope!
Reach out to those who are alone or lonely and SHARE THAT YOU CARE!

 

Happy Forgiveness Day!

Friday, June 26th, 2020
In celebration of Forgiveness Day, today, let’s push the pause button and stop for a moment!   Why is it important to practice the art of forgiveness in our lives? What does it accomplish?
Forgiveness is an act we do for ourselves, for our own emotional wellbeing.  It allows us to unload the burdens of emotional baggage that are weighing us down and sucking the life out of us!
When we make peace with our pain, anger, and injustice, it will allow our wings to carry us up and away so that we may soar to a “lighter” life!   Not practicing forgiveness keeps us stuck in the muck!
Who wants or needs that?  Make a commitment today to move towards a happier and lighter life by letting go of the old wounds and hurts of yesterday.
Open your heart to the act of forgiveness and remove the anchors that keep you in the murky waters of pain. It is transforming and healing for the body and soul.  You are worth it and living a life that is “lighter” means living a life that is free from the weight of grudges, pain, anger, and negativity.  Letting it all go allows the spirit of peace and healing to enter your body and spirit.  You have the power to make this happen and you are the benefactor when you do so.  Make a step towards wellness today–forgive others, forgive yourself, and forgive the life dreams you thought were promised but were snatched away.
Today is National Forgiveness Day.  Make it also the day you become “lighter” and free from the bonds of past wounds, unmet needs, abuse, and sorrow.  Begin the journey to healing.  Step onto the path to forgiveness.  Look ahead to the dawn of a new day as the “lighter” you!

 

Life with our BESTIES is the BEST!

Monday, June 17th, 2019

 

What better time to celebrate our besties than in the month of June as we all focus on those special gal pals on June 8th —National Best Friends Day!

How have your girlfriends enriched your life and added color to your tapestry through the decades? Have you pushed the “pause” button lately to deliberately focus on the part your tribe of loyal friends have played in your journey?  If not, the time is now, and the benefits are well worth the effort.

As I continue on my book tour to different cities and states, I am amazed by the common themes in the stories I am hearing from women.  Time after time, I hear from people that come up to me as I am signing their books, and they share that their girlfriends saved them from drowning in the rough seas of life.  These ladies pour out their heartfelt stories of how their besties rallied around them.  A recent story was about a young husband that had open heart surgery and nearly died from complications in the days that followed. It was her besties that kept the vigil in the hospital and kept this young wife afloat.  Others share how they were saved by their girlfriends after they lost their home in the horrible floods of Hurricane Harvey.  But, the trends are always similar, it is our girlfriends, our besties, that wrap their arms around us and breathe life into us, literally.  

In my new book “THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS” I delve into the real guts of female friendship and how powerful these loyal tribes are during times of trials and tribulations.  None of us need to struggle through these challenges without a connected and trustworthy team of girlfriends walking along side supporting us.  Life is about connection, communication and intimacy and what better time to practice these 3 pillars of healthy friendships than when our friend is about to drown in the turbulent seas of life?   

What friends do you know that are getting pelted with the curveballs of life?  Have you reached out to them to toss them a lifeline yet?  Don’t wait.  You may be the angel they need today to keep them afloat in their crisis.  We all need to know that we are not alone, help is on the way, and we will survive!  I have been in that scary place many times, and it was my GIRLFRIENDS that got down in the trenches with me and helped me find my way back.

There are certain things we can “take to the bank” in life.  And those are the following:   Life is challenging, nobody gets to escape hardship, and sooner or later, the curveballs find you! But, we also know there are powerful forces to help us deal with these events, they are called GIRLFRIENDS!   

LET’S CELEBRATE OUR BESTIES DURING JUNE— AND REACH OUT TO OUR GIRLFRIENDS TO TELL THEM WE ARE ALWAYS HERE FOR THEM NO MATTER WHAT LIFE HURLS THEIR WAY!    

** Stay tuned for my upcoming seminars and events connected with
THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS!  

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In awe of “GIRLFRIEND FEVER!”

Saturday, May 4th, 2019

I have had the honor and pleasure of spending this past week doing book events in Arizona and my home state of Texas! To say that I have been in awe of the unexpected level of passion and energy being generated by the ladies attending would be an understatement!  The appetite and zest for my message on the merits of female friendship is beyond anything I could have ever imagined.

Last week I presented my book lecture and signing at two places in Scottsdale, Arizona.  First, I was warmly welcomed and embraced by over 40 wonderful ladies at the DC RANCH Country Club, where my dear friend, Ginny and her husband, Tom, are members.  After finishing my 90 minute presentation, we engaged in a book signing and meet and greet.   I was blown away by the zest and enthusiasm shown by everyone for my message on the HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS.  The energy and emotion in the room was highly palpable and made my heart pound, literally!

My second Arizona event was at the Maravilla Retirement Community where I was honored to speak to a room full of “SuperAgers”— those “young” ladies who are 80 years of age and above that are cognitively 20 to 30 years younger than their actual age.  I speak of these vibrant, active, thriving females in my book, and seeing them in person was such a thrill for me!  Many shared their personal stories, including one 87 year old who recently became a widow.  But, she has adapted to her life at Maravilla much quicker because of her new female friends there.  They all sat together in the front row at my event and were clearly all very connected and supportive of each other!  It warmed my heart to see their smiles and their love for each other!

Yesterday, I did a book signing at a local women’s boutique, THE SALTED HIPPIE near my home.  It was another amazing evening of meeting women of all ages and backgrounds who value the gift of girlfriends!  Many of my own dear friends were in attendance, as were neighbors, and many new faces who wanted to learn more about this brand new book on friendship.  During our chatting and signing, many of these women shared their own personal stories with me.   In our short time together some bared their souls, sharing joys and sorrows.  One very brave young lady shared her incredible grief of recently becoming a widow, and being uplifted by the love and support of her girlfriends during the past months.  As the night went on, story after story was shared by one after another, all with the same ending…….”and it was my girlfriends that saved me.”

As I drove home last night from my book event, my heart was full of gratitude for all the special women I had met over the past week, and for the gift of their bravery to share these stories of pain, loss, sadness and even joy.  It is in these moments I realize in a fresh new way, as my book clearly advocates, we are indeed transformed by the help and love from our girlfriends.   This is the real deal, it is authentic, it is genuine, it is THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS!

 

 

The Magic of Celebrations!

Monday, April 15th, 2019

In my new book on female friendship, THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS: How to Create Your Best Life Through Female Connection, I speak about one of the characteristics of a thriving friendship as sharing in each other’s joys and celebrations.  And, this past weekend, that is exactly what my husband and I did!   We attended the magical wedding of our longtime friends’ daughter and shared an epic time with old friends from our college days.

Many moons ago, when my husband and I were dating we decided to set up his roommate and my roommate on a blind date!  The stars were aligned and they were a match made in Heaven!  They married and the rest is history!  Fast forward now nearly 40 years later, and here we are attending their daughter’s wedding just outside Austin, Texas!   A lovely wedding, a glowing and beautiful bride, and a handsome and smiling groom!  It was a delightful event for so many reasons!

First, we were incredibly happy for the newlyweds who are beaming with love and joy for each other and their new status as “MR. & MRS.”  As they were photographed for the first time following the “I DO’s” a brilliant double rainbow revealed itself on cue!  How perfect is that?

Second, we had the honor of sharing this amazing celebration with the happy couple and our dear friends, the parents of the Bride, who continue to be in our very close knit circle of friends.  Sharing these joys of monumental life celebrations is priceless and precious!  We truly treasure these times for the richness they bring to us!

Third, we are blessed to share these events with our other dear friends, who have become our family!  Although we all live in different states and don’t see each other much, we always pick up where we left off.  It is like no time has even passed.

What were my takeaways from this wedding weekend?  They are simple:

*Treasure the gift of friendship for the special part it has played in your life story

*Make it a PRIORITY to share the joys of special events, weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, for these are moments we will always hold close to our hearts.

*Be grateful for the magical moments in time!  A double rainbow, a falling star, or a glorious sunset, they connect us yet again, with the awe and wonder of our Creator.   God winks, for sure!

 

For more on the gift of friendship in our lives, check out my new book, THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS.

Available now on Amazon, in paperback or Kindle and at Barnes & Noble.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 Tips For Avoiding Unhealthy Friendships!

Monday, April 1st, 2019

So, you want to make some new friends but are just a tad nervous they may disappoint you, or turn out to be high-hassle and not a good fit for your friendship collection.   How can you be savvy when making new friends to protect yourself, and not end up in unhealthy relationships?   Here are 4 quick tips from my new book,  THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS:  How to Create Your Best Life Through Female Connection:

1.   KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN

Observe how new friends talk about, treat, and interact with their other friends.  If they appear to be gossipers, back-stabbers or two-faced about their other friends, be on guard, YOU could be next!  Instead, look for girlfriends who seem kind, genuine, honest, respectful, and nonjudgmental.

 

2.    DRAMA QUEENS ARE NOT WELCOME

If these new friends seem to like drama and are always in the middle of a new soap opera, be careful!   You just may be the next new character in this play if you continue the relationship!  Some people really enjoy the stage, and they love high drama and being in the middle of an emotional messy situation.  But, if that is not your deal, don’t sign up to be cast in the next production.  There are lots of drama-free friendships out there waiting for you, GO FIND THEM!

 

3.    CHECK NEEDINESS AT THE FRIENDSHIP DOOR

Do these new friends seem to have a high degree of neediness?  Do they require lots of emotional support and ask you to be giving all the time?  If so, then evaluate if this is the friendship you will enjoy and benefit from yourself.  Friendships should be reciprocal, and back and forth, give and take.  If you are always being the one to give, give, and give some more, then ask yourself if this is the right friendship for you.

 

4.    ANTENNAS UP FOR TOXIC FRIENDS

Be careful when encountering people who display negative behaviors of anger, competition, envy, rage, criticism and narcissism.  These behaviors are the ingredients for a toxic relationship.   Being able to spot these traits in friends takes a little practice, but it is well worth honing your skills to do so.  It will save you pain and heartache down the road.  For example, be wary if your friend always displays competitive behaviors with you, or she struggles to be genuinely happy for you when things go your way and you enjoy success.  True friends don’t behave this way.

 

For much more on Female Friendships and how to live our healthiest, happiest and longest lives by connecting with our Girlfriends, purchase my new book, THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS,  at Barnes & Noble or

on Amazon in Kindle or paperback at:

https://amzn.to/2XN2g0A

 

 

 

 

 

The Three “R’s” of HEALING

Tuesday, March 26th, 2019

In my new book, The Healing Power of Girlfriends: How to Create Your Best Life Through Female Connection, just released on March 8th, I share many tools and suggestions for how to navigate the channels of female friendship and glean the most benefits for a happier, healthier and longer life.   The book shares personal stories from my own decades of treasured relationships with my girlfriends, as well as stories from clients, my research questionnaire, and relevant data from studies at our most elite institutions.  One of the topics addressed is how to heal when life deals us hardships and challenges.  It is within our female friendships that we have the opportunity to help our girlfriends find their way back from wounds, scars, and hurts that are part of our human experience.  Here are my 3 “R’s” of Healing:

*REPAIR

Verbalize and validate with a nonjudgmental ear.  Let her know she is not alone. Offer reassurance and provide her the opportunity to feel safe so that she may vent, cry, grieve, or express anger or frustration.

*RESTORATION

This step is about rebuilding and moving forward toward empowerment and strength again.  If your friend is feeling fragile, exhausted and tapped out, offer your time and resources to assist her with getting back on track.  This may involve being her “taxi” service to appointments, or enlisting the help of her other family or friends.  Sometimes just asking her how you can be the most help to her is beneficial, so she can be active in this recovery planning as well, if she is ready.

*RECOVERY

The last step is about your girlfriend actually returning to her normal state of functioning.  In this stage, autonomy and independence begin to show up again.  As emotional, mental, and physical healing occurs, female friends play a vital role.  During this period, check in with her daily or several times a week, offer her time to talk, vent, or share via phone or face-to-face.  Watch for signs of delayed stress and fatigue that may not have presented before.  Continue to show support, encouragement, compassion, and be a mentor as she moves through recovery in this healing process.

The 3 “R’s” equip us with the tools to help our female friends heal and leave the brokenness behind.  The gifts you bring to the friendship table may be just the exact gifts your girlfriend needs to begin on her journey towards healing.  Don’t ever underestimate the power you have to be someone’s Angel and their lifeline back from the stormy seas.   When you see a girlfriend in pain and in need of healing, don’t hold back and wait for the right moment to jump in.  Offer her your hand, your ear, and most importantly, your heart.

**For more ideas on how to benefit from female connections, and celebrate the gift of girlfriends to live our healthiest, happiest and longest life, go to Amazon.com and purchase THE HEALING POWER OF GIRLFRIENDS in Kindle or paperback,   https://amzn.to/2XN2g0A     Or at Barnes & Noble.

 

 

 

 

 

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