Amanda Marie Cottrell-- a gifted children's author and illustrator from Calgary, Alberta, Canada-- uses inspiration from her 12 plus year career as an educator to create beautiful, mindful children's picture books. Her passion is teaching young children and utilizing creativity within the classroom in order to assist children to believe in themselves through connection, which is also the aim of her books.
I recently had the chance to porch sit with my bestie neighbor, Miranda Crosby and our mutual friend Danica Thomas, to talk about the ups and downs we’ve experienced throughout the Covid-19 pandemic— and how we have coped with the changes in our lives. We brought our unique perspectives, backgrounds, personalities, quirks to the microphone 🎙 to chat candidly about this strange time in life that has turned the world 🌎 upside down. Miranda— an Army spouse whose husband deployed overseas in January— is pregnant with their first child all while wading through these new socially distant waters sans her husband. Danica— a widowed Army spouse, is a military suicide awareness and prevention advocate raising two young daughters as a single parent while working and virtually homeschooling her daughters all on her own. Alison (me)— an Army spouse, children’s book author, writer, podcaster trying to juggle content creation, marketing, writing, book sales while rejoicing as the final week of the school year approaches for her second grader. Thank the LORD.
April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. Each of us plays a vital role in raising awareness about the prevention of child abuse. It is of utmost importance that we each take an active stand to prevent child abuse to build healthier, more loving, whole communities where a child is never forgotten. If ever there was a critical time to promote social wellness and prevention of maltreatment of children, it is now especially due to current world circumstances. Through social-distancing, it may seem even more challenging to help others, but we can still spread the word to create awareness.
I’ve been witnessing (and caught up in) a pandemic within a pandemic, and what I’m calling Coronavirus & Mom Guilt— an effort that started out with the best of heart, but is escalating out of control. Mom’s are frantically trying to figure out a new normal on the coattails of school closures due to the Coronavirus— and coming up with ways to keep their children engaged in educational ways. Moms are uploading websites and google documents with wholesome and academic stimuli to keep their kid’s minds busy, their routines on schedule and trying wholeheartedly to support one another. I will admit a few days ago— shoot this morning— I was completely on board to provide live streaming story time events, worksheets, etc. to help anyone out there looking for something to do in the boredom of being home bound with kiddos. I’m still willing to do so. BUT I want to set the record straight by saying that I DO NOT WANT TO STRESS YOU OUT! You do not have to do anything right this minute except keep yourself and your family safe and at home.
A Western North Carolina-based author is spreading JOY wherever she goes! Years ago as a young mother of two sons, Joy Resor wrote a prayer daily to become the JOY she was created to be. She is now living that JOY everyday where she strives to inspire love, peace and JOY through Joy on Your Shoulders— as a spiritual mentor who offers inspiring books and Batik cotton wares for sale as well as a monthly newsletter called Go In Joy!
“It’s awesome. They really help. How do you even describe something so wonderful!” -Kenneth, a man who benefits weekly from the support he receives at Seth’s Wish.
Yep. It's true— at times, a hard pill to swallow. Not everyone will like you. Not everyone will support you. Not everyone will applaud you. Nope. It won't happen. And it is perfectly okay. You cannot make people like you. You can be kind and courteous. Yet I afraid to stand up for yourself. Always strive to be supportive of others and applaud them, but remember the courtesy may not be returned in favor.
2019 brought me the opportunity to interview some extremely inspirational, intelligent and talented women who came into my life either professionally or personally. It was such an honor to highlight their stories, and messages of hope. The world is filled with unique individuals that we can all learn from— I certainly benefited from each of the stories these women shared with me. If you are looking for #inspiration in the #newyear look no further! Here are the Top 6 Inspirational Interviews on #HodgePodgePodcast:
One year ago today, Mommy's Big, Red Monster Truck hit the presses! What was a little dream, became a huge accomplishment. Over the past year, there have been many firsts... holding my published children's book in my hands for the first time, attending my first bookstore author events, first library events, visiting elementary schools as an official author for the first time, reading my book to children across North Carolina, and the list goes on. The opportunity to share my children's travel and adventure picture book has been a priceless gift to me.
Today, I had the honor of interviewing one of my dearest friends in the world, Stephanie Starr. Stephanie is a superstar whose light shines so bright. She has overcome amazing odds and blossomed during a time of struggle. She is an amazing mother of two beautiful miracle children, a loving and devoted wife to her husband Adam, a successful and tenacious Mompreneur, a devout woman of faith and encourager, and a Multiple Sclerosis warrior and advocate. We talked about everything under the sun to include her battle with MS, infertility issues, Christian Faith, postpartum depression, and her recent entrepreneurial pursuits in the CBD industry with a local coastal North Carolina-based company, Green Compass Global. LISTEN TO OUR PODCAST INTERVIEW HERE: https://anchor.fm/jalisonpaulyahoocom/episodes/Stephanie-Starr-MS-Warrior--Woman-of-Faith--Mompreneur-e7tpdh