My thoughts on “Dirty Money”


Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a busy week. I don’t know about you, but it seems to me life is getting busier and busier, and there aren’t enough hours in the day. I’ve made progress on my writing as well. I’ve completed the edits on one of my manuscripts and I’m super excited about this story. It’s coming together and it has evolved into such an amazing story. It’s my best work yet!



Photo on Visual Hunt


But enough about that, today I’d like to talk about a series I found on Netflix. It’ called “Dirty Money” and it was eye opening to say the least. There are six episodes and each one illustrates the level of corruption in our world and the corruption is global.

Photo credit: sushi the great on / CC BY-NC-SA

The first one caught my attention. It’s the story about how Volkswagen lied to consumers by stating they had anti-pollution devices installed on the VW Bug, when in fact they did not. The devices were actually disabled after they were tested in the factory by management.  They got caught, but no one went to jail.

Photo credit: opie0429 on Visual Hunt / CC BY-NC-SA

Another documentary in this same series that caught my attention is the story on how the bank HSBC laundered money for the drug cartels. It goes on to illustrate how high ranking bank officials knew it was happening but did nothing to stop it.

This makes the war on drugs a huge joke.

I don’t want to say too much about the actual stories because I don’t want to ruin it for everyone, but when you watch the series you’ll find a common theme throughout. The unbridled greed of corporate leaders and the lengths they’ll go to get those billions of dollars.

In the series, you’ll find very few people actually went to prison after getting caught. Out of the six episodes, there are only two instances of jail time. That’s horrible.

The one about Scott Tucker who was actually sentenced to sixteen years in prison after his payday scheme was discovered, shows the delusional thinking of corporate leaders.  It’s staggering.

Just a heads up. The last episode is on Trump. 🙂

Below is the link to the trailer. You’ll want to watch this series. Trust me.



Posted in Documentaries, Politics, Public Service Announcements, USA | Tagged , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Finding Balance in 2018



Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’m back today and I’ve gone through the edits on my latest MS. It’s coming together and I’m excited about this story! I’m going to go through it one more time before I start the query process so wish me luck!


Photo credit: Erin Costa on VisualHuntCC BY

I don’t know about you, but lately I’ve been struggling with finding balance. I’m devoting as much time as I can to my writing, but it’s hard when you only have so many hours in the day and so many goals. For example, I’m trying to be the best mom I can be, the best writer I can be, and live my best life. Sometimes my goals compete with each other, and I have to choose.

I always put my kids first, but when I do that, I have to put my writing aside for later, but when I do that I ultimately skip my exercising for the day, and let’s face it, that’s not good for my health. Then I have to deal with the guilt of not taking care of myself.

Photo on Visual Hunt

So to avoid that, and the frustration I feel if I don’t spend time each day writing, I’ve worked out a schedule where I focus on one goal at a time and I give myself permission to focus on that one goal. This is important, giving yourself permission because it alleviates all those negative emotions like guilt and frustration.


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I’ve also whittled my goals down to three. This is a big step because sometimes the reason we can’t find balance is because we’ve overloaded ourselves. So I’ve simplified them and shrunk them down to three broad ones.

I want to be the best mom I can be and that means being present and taking care of my kids’ emotional and physical needs. However, to be the best mom I can be, there are times when I have to take care of me, too. So I’m going to make sure I take time to exercise and eat healthy and every once in a while take a little time to just be instead of do.

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I also want to be the best writer I can be so I’ve got to take time to do this. I’ve got to hone my craft and write incredible stories. 🙂 I’m doing this by working with critique partners and mentors. I want my writing to move to the next level and the only way to do that is to improve.


Photo on Visualhunt

I also want to live my best life. To do that I have to take care of my relationships with my hubby and my kids and my extended family and friends.

This is how I’m going into 2018. I’m simplifying and focuses with a laser instead of a flashlight. How about you? How are you approaching the New Year and what do you see on the horizon? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Family, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Surviving the Teen Years


Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’ve been busy this week with kid duties and writing. Although, I had to take a break for a couple of days because I got stuck on how to continue my story. On the second day, I went for a run and wouldn’t you know it, all I needed was some physical activity. The plot bunny worked itself out.

Then I got my first MS back from my friend/mentor, Sam, who’s finding all my little peccadillos for me. She truly is amazing and I love her! So, I’m planning on diving into that tonight and making my story that much more awesome!

Photo on VisualHunt

But enough about that. I struggled to come up with a topic for today’s post, but while in the shower, I thought of one and so without further ado, here it is.

I know it’s hard to believe but my kids love to push my buttons. They love to get under my skin, and they will take every opportunity to do it. For example, I hate it when someone burps or makes the farting noise at the dinner table. So of course, my boys do this every chance they get. I’ll be sitting there eating my dinner and one of them will start with the fart noise. I’ll look up from my plate and they’ll both be giggling. Here’s a typical scenario.

“Okay. Who did that?”

The boys will look at each other and start giggling harder. “We don’t know,” they’ll cry in unison. I’ll look at hubby, but he’s no help whatsoever because he’s laughing, too.

“Knock it off. You know I don’t like that sound at the dinner table.”

They’ll grow quiet until I look down at my plate again and that’s when another healthy fart sound will ripple through the atmosphere. Of course, things only get worse from this point on.  Every time I look down at my plate one of my little cherubs will rip an even louder one than the last time.

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I didn’t know what to do and many a meal has been ruined for me because of the shenanigans of these two adorable scalawags. Then one day I had an epiphany. I could be just as irritating to them. Instead of me getting all upset and ornery, why don’t I get on their last nerve like they get on mine? The light bulb in my mind turned on. I knew of a way to do it.

So the next day, while at the dinner table the little tricksters started in with their fart noises. I was  twirling spaghetti around my fork when one of them sent the fart sound out into the atmosphere. I immediately dropped my eating utensil and stood up and started singing.

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Yes. Singing. I started belting out the lyrics to the song “You are my sunshine.”

Photo on Visualhunt

After all, we could all use a little more sunshine in our lives, right? 😉

My boys’ reactions were instantaneous. They both covered their ears and started wailing. “Stop! Stop singing!”

And that’s when I was able to negotiate a deal. I told them I wouldn’t sing if they wouldn’t burp or make disgusting fart sounds. They agreed.

I will add a little side note here. My boys loved my singing when they were babies. I used to sing them to sleep. As soon as they entered the murky waters of the tween and teen years, they turned and no longer enjoy my musical talent.

See how quickly a liability can turn into an asset? It’s all in how you use it. Am I right or am I right?

You’re welcome. We parents need to stick together so we can all survive the teen years.

Photo credit: Kevin Rheese on / CC BY

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post today. Do you have any parenting tips you’d like to share? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you!

Posted in Parenting, Personal | Tagged , , , , , , | 33 Comments

Living Your Best Life

Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a hectic week of work, kid appointments, and other important shenanigans.  I’ve reached 63,647 words in my manuscript and I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. This is the rough draft and it is rough, but I’m almost there.  🙂

Photo on VisualHunt

Anyway, enough about that. Today I’d like to talk about a phrase I heard  over the holidays. It intrigued me when I heard it and I thought I’d share it with all of you. “Live your best Life.”

That’s a worthy goal, don’t you think?

But what exactly does that mean?

The answer will be different for everyone. Because, you know, we’re all unique little snowflakes, right?

Photo on VisualHunt 


Right. We’re all unique and beautiful.  Don’t you forget it. (Wags finger at the non-believers).

Not one person’s brain is wired exactly like another’s so living your best life will be different from one person to the next. How’s that for stating the obvious?

Sorry. I got off track there.

Anyway, I feel we should all strive to live our best lives. I know what you’re thinking, what is my best life? This is where it gets hard. Because our best lives will look different when we’re in twenties than when we’re in our thirties and forties, and well, when you’re in your fifties, it’s going to change again.

Living your best life is a fluid goal and it changes as we grow and evolve. We humans go through phases and sometimes those phases can be painful.

So what does living your best life mean?

It means getting in touch with your inner voice. You know, the voice in your head that’s telling you you’re making a mistake? Or the one that’s telling you to go for it when you hang back afraid.

It means getting in touch with that voice and actually listening to it.

It means choosing a path and sticking with that path because it resonates with you. You can always tell when you’ve taken the wrong path because you’ll be uncomfortable. It won’t feel right and deep inside you’ll know it. You’ll feel like you’re faking it. When you’re on the path you’re supposed to be on, you’ll feel like your true self and you’ll be happy.  Life won’t stress you out as much. You’ll take setbacks and obstacles in stride.

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So how do we get in touch with that wise inner voice?

Again, it’s going to be different for everyone. Some people use meditation and that’s a healthy way to do it. Meditation is a stress reliever, and it’s good for your body and your mind.

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I usually go for a walk in the woods. Walking is a great exercise and striding through nature is a stress reliever as well. There’s actual scientific proof that hiking in the woods is beneficial for your health. For more info go to this link and check it out. The Benefits of Forest-Bathing

But I digress. Sorry. I love forest bathing. I’m a tree hugger. What can I say?

Photo credit: shannonkringen on / CC BY

Anyway, back to my topic. I have a point. I promise. 🙂

When you’re in line with your inner voice and working toward the goal that resonates with you, you’re going to be less stressed and won’t play the comparison game with your friends and co-workers because you’ll be too busy living your authentic life.

That’s what’s wrong with the world today. Many people have lost touch with their inner voice, and because of that, they’re pursuing the wrong goals. They play the comparison game, and end up losing because they try to emulate someone else instead of forging their own path.

Don’t get me wrong, finding a mentor is a golden nugget in life, but only if that person helps you pursue a goal that resonates you.

Photo on VisualHunt

So to live your best life, you need to get in touch with that inner voice and listen to it. Let it guide you to the place you need to go. You’ll get there when you’re supposed to and not one minute before. So enjoy the journey.

Thanks for stopping by and reading my post! How do you feel about Living your Best Life? Do you have any tips you’d like to offer readers? Leave a comment. I love hearing from you!


Posted in Family, Future, inspiration | Tagged , , , , , , | 44 Comments

More Support and Less Criticism for 2018



Photo by James Marvin Phelps on Visual hunt / CC BY-NC

Hello everyone. I hope all is well with you. I’m back today after a busy holiday season, and I’m looking forward to 2018. I’m hoping this is my best year yet, and I hope it’s your best year as well.

For my first post of the year, I’d like to talk about the negative messages women receive throughout their lives. It feels like every decision we make, society has something negative to say about it. I believe the image below is an accurate depiction of what women go through as they follow their own path.


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So, one of my goals for 2018 is to be more supportive of other women even when their path is different from mine. I don’t want to join in with all the negative voices and be part of the crowd. I want to be the one positive voice that’s yelling out, “You go girl!”

If we received more positive messages just think what we could accomplish. If we didn’t have to spend so much time and energy defending our position or our choices just think how far we could go.

Hmm…makes you stop and think, doesn’t it?

Do you think we can turn this trend around?

I do. More and more women are aware of the negative messages society has cast in our direction. My question is where does this all stem from? How did it get started?

This is something that’s been going on for generations. You can see evidence of it throughout history.  We’re changing it, slowly, but surely.

We need to band together. The hardest part of all of this is for women to see that we’re part of the problem. We need to stop judging each other so harshly and start supporting each other even if we don’t agree. Everyone’s path is different and we’re all entitled to our own path. We need to remember that when we get into that critical, judgey mode. A lot of women do this. I’ve seen it, but we can change this and send more positive vibes out into the atmosphere.

Photo on Visual hunt

This is important because we need to be role models for future generations. We want them to have it better than us, don’t you agree? We didn’t go through all the crap we’ve been through for our kids to experience the same thing.

Photo on Visual Hunt

The world needs compassion right now. With more compassion and less competition we can do amazing things. What are some of the things you can do to be more supportive of women around you? I’m always looking for ideas!

So there you have it. One of my New Year’s goals is to have more compassion and support the women around me. How about you? Let’s create a ripple effect and see what happens. I’d love to see amazing things in 2018, wouldn’t you? Leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you!


Other Articles you might be interested in:

Let’s End the Mom Wars

The War on Perfection


Posted in raising kids, Women | Tagged , , , , , , , | 43 Comments

Please Welcome Kadee Carder as she shares her new release with us!




“Here be dragons to be slain, here be rich rewards to gain;
If we perish in the seeking, why, how small a thing is death!”
~Dorothy SayersIt’s release day for HERE BE DRAGONS! My heart’s roaringly thunderous inside my chest. The pressure, the epitome, the culmination of months of work—no, years of work—leading up to THIS one moment…it’s finally here. Are you ready?


Breathing life into her awoke my own resolution to restore others. Saylor didn’t know I’d revived her. She didn’t know for months, and during that time I traveled across our blue sphere and back to her recovering form at Fort Story, Virginia. Little blonde firecracker. Changed my life.

Sergeant Merritt Steele sat beside me on the cargo plane carrying us to Camp Kissinger, located deep in the heart of Australia’s Outback. “Sorry to see them go,” my co-commander noted, a slight tremor in his blue eyes. I knew he meant more than he said. He’d connected with Saylor, her sister Micah, and the McConnell family during our three-week leave.

Neither of us knew when or if we’d see them again. But that was life as Echo Company of the Alliance Military Guard, and we held that knowledge closer than our body armor. Never quit. We defeat. Let the enemy fall, come what may. That’s what we did, that’s what we were, and not a single one of us doubted it.

Not even when we landed in a war zone.

(HERE BE DRAGONS, Chapter One Excerpt)

Are you living in a war zone? 
Fiction shows us how to deal with our non-fiction. We can read these characters’ stories, see their pain, feel their journey, and tremble as their spirits quake. We get invited into their space and see the world with its crumbles, heartache, and power. Fiction’s miraculous. Fiction offers a gift of escape, of courage, of grit, of shuddering through temptation with the hero. Are you facing some serious shadows? Are you hearing the grinding of bones in the distance? Follow Tucker into the heart of the Outback.

Where are the heroes?
A friend of mine recently said she wondered where the heroes were. The current trend for stories is that they often feature a strong heroine—and while I am ALL about a strong heroine, and inspiring girls to believe in themselves—I also believe we need to encourage boys to protect, to serve, to lead humbly, to explore, to create, and to forget stereotypes. Be inspired. Be fearless. Be wise. Be the hero.
Temptation leads us down paths where we consider retreating or cheating, or complaining or blaming. Well let me ask you, can fiction teach us to face the shadows? Can fiction show us the glory in the fight for life?

The amazing thing about HERE BE DRAGONS is it’s only $4.99 on Kindle Unlimited AND if you’ve got Kindle Unlimited, you can read it for FREE! I’ve had several readers who’ve provided feedback, and what they’ve all said is how much they enjoyed the ending–do you need a great ending? HERE BE DRAGONS is currently only available as an ebook, until I sell 100 per my publisher’s contract. Help both of us hold that book in our hands. We need to grip this, to flip through these pages. Connect with a free trial of Kindle Unlimited and download your copy of HERE BE DRAGONS and soar through those Australian skies with Tucker and his rag-tag crew of Guardsmen.


What is HERE BE DRAGONS about?
Alliance Military Guard sent the order. Sergeant Tucker Thompson acquiesced. Hopping on a plane to his long-lost Australian birthplace, he’s been charged with his toughest mission yet. Thompson must rally his company of soldiers to prevent a new generation of weaponry from breaching the world’s borders.Readers love HERE BE DRAGONS! One reviewer stated:
“On the surface, this novel is a good dose of sci-fi and futuristic drama. Deep down, the realistic characters, with their daily struggle, not only for survival but also for understanding their sense of purpose in life, meets the need of young adult readers who, similarly, are seeking a meaning of life. The message is clear: work hard, stay the course, and look for the good in everyone and everything. Life can be good.” (Emily-Jane Hills Orford)Are you wanting to add a great book to your reading list for 2018?
Grab HERE BE DRAGONS today. I’ve seen those dark days, those dark nights. I’ve felt the gripping fingers of desperation slipping around my neck in the trenches of writing, amid crying children, tight finances, broken down cars, endless mounds of papers to grade. I’ve scraped by on my knees and had to carry heavier weights than I thought possible. But you know what you find in the darkness? You find the light. You find the people who help, the people who stride through your front door with chocolate and coffee, and the people who truly believe all of which you’re capable.
You need to believe it, too.

The stories you tell yourself in the dark, those are the ones that stick with you.
You have the opportunity to build upon the bricks of shattered dreams and mortar of confusion, and turn it into an empire. What do you do, what do you tell yourself, when the lights go out?

Some may beg for light. Others may beg for relief, beg for some give in the take. Others may bury their faces further into the miry pool.

Something I’ve learned in the dark places: there’s always someone around to bring in the light. There’s always someone around to absorb the spilled tears, to carry the weight, and to offer a square of chocolate. Death brought confusion. But, ultimately, life wins.

You see, people are intrepid. People do seek life and life fully. There may be a lot of dark, but the warriors for light rage on. They cannot, they will not rest, until the light shines over the horizon. You see it among the darkness: a sparkle, a spark, a crack of hope against all odds.

The people who feed the darkness, they are confused. They are trapped. They are prisoners enchained by lies. They are enveloped by the monsters who devour them.

Another lesson? The hardest battle may be around the corner, trapped in the tunnels, snarling against the bright light you carry. Be prepared. Be prepared for anguish, be prepared for a cold chill to grasp for the warm light. Be prepared to fight with courage, with kindness, with tenacity, and grit. Expect among the war cry a song of hope to emerge. Be the singer. Be the strong arms carrying the weak into the night. Be the grammar joke, when death is on the line.

Bang the war drums.

Rattle the cages.

Click the link below to check out the book!




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Happy New Year!




Happy New Year, everyone!

I hope your 2018 is the best year yet for you, and I hope you’ve made big plans. I know I have. Good luck to you. I’m working on my New Year’s Goals and celebrating the birth of one of my babies. He was a New Year’s baby, and he’s growing up way too fast.


I want to take a moment and thank all of my wonderful followers and the bloggers who stop by and chat with me. I appreciate all of you and feel like many of you are my close friends. I’m grateful for all of you, and again, good luck to you in the New Year.

Posted in Holiday Posts | Tagged , , , , | 10 Comments