Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Coronavirus & Mom Guilt

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.

I’m already seeing where this is taking a toll on many moms who are not ready to jump in feet first and take the educational reigns. These are the same women who are still trying to process the overload of information coming out minute by minute about a worldwide crisis.

They are trying desperately to keep it together and not show their children the fear, and anxiety slowly creeping in. They are just trying to take it one baby step at a time— and are not signing up for a Spartan race without training for it.

Ladies, we are stressing one another the flip out.

Stop it.

Take deep breaths.

Relax.

We are all very different in how we process our feelings and emotions. Not all of us are helicopter parents or Tiger moms. We don’t enjoy micromanaging or overly scheduled homes. Some of us need a little time to relax. Ponder. Prepare for the days, weeks or months of what is to come.

It is COMPLETELY fine if you feel more comfortable with having a level of control in creating an orderly household and productive home. I’m surely not shaming you super women out there. I commend you. And I will be happy to provide instructional materials from my children’s book and other educational tools I’ve created.

But personally, I’m going to take some time off from routine and the busyness of our norms. And I want you to know it is completely okay if you do the same!

Wash your hands.

Bunker down.

Try not to stress.

Netflix.

Read.

Exercise.

Eat chocolate.

Drink wine.

Pray.

Dance.

Cry.

Laugh.

Whatever is cathartic.

But make sure to tell your kids you love them daily.

Help make them as comfortable as possible.

It’s stressful on their little hearts and minds too.

Be safe.

God bless.

And peace be with you all!

Kindly,

Alison Klakowicz

Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Joy Resor Shines— Western North Carolina Author, Artisan, Spiritual Mentor

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! 
Designed to SHINE! Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart her second children’s picture book has won three awards.
My son and I read Designed to Shine this past year— at bedtime— and loved the positive messages it left us with to have a peaceful night’s rest.
She strives to create books from the heart to touch lives in rich, loving and peaceful ways.
Her first book, Go In Joy! An Alphabetical Adventure has touched lives through her minister’s Prison Light Book Ministry, including a woman who asked the author to write her.
This is a wonderful series of books that truly inspire ALL.
“Lo and behold, I’m writing to a few prisoners who read my books and write to me…
I visit students in the Schenck Job Corps Program in Pisgah Forest twice a month.  The first time, a student suggested that I create a rap video of the rhymes in Designed to SHINE! Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart.  My partner Michael and I intend to lean into this amazing idea…
Designed to SHINE! Read Aloud Rhymes for Any Size Heart – Volume Two is being illustrated, and a second edition of Go In Joy! An Alphabetical Adventure will emerge.” -Joy Resor
Thanks to Joy for spreading your love and happiness to all of us!

To find out more about Joy Resor, look here:
Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Children’s Book Review- “Something’s Eating the Garden” by Pam Fries

Pam Fries, an award-winning artist and illustrator, has published a lovely children’s picture book titled Something’s Eating the Garden.

The gorgeously illustrated book features an amazing garden adventure with a child and Papa. Papa discovers that something is eating his garden and the child tries to solve the mystery by guessing who the creature culprit could be.

The sweet (and curious) child imagines different animals— like an elephant, giraffe, pig or even a crocodile— nibbling on the garden plants.

But to no avail none are the guilty party!

With each turn of the page, the reader is greeted by whimsical, bright and beautiful, full-page illustrations.

It is a delight to the senses and will help create a curiosity of the outdoors, animal life and vegetables for every young child! A wonderful educational tool, for sure.

The Washington State author Pam Fries, published the book soon after the passing of her husband who the character “Papa” was based around. They were together for 40 years, and the book gave her purpose and a place to remember the legacy of her husband.

She has 5 beautiful grandchildren, a dog and many chickens!

Pam enjoys speaking to schools and Women’s groups, creating breath taking art— and working in the garden.

For more information you can follow her here:

https://www.facebook.com/Pam-Fries-AuthorIllustrator-315272125744988/

Instagram @pamjfriesartist

mightylionpress@gmail.com

https://www.mightylionpress.com/mighty_lion_press.php

Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Monica Fullerton- Founder of Spouse-ly, Air Force Spouse, Momprenuer, Connecting the Military Community

Monica Fullerton, Founder of Spouse-ly, http://www.spouse-ly.com

Listen to my inspirational and informative conversation with Monica Fullerton of Spouse-ly here on Hodge Podge Podcast:

https://anchor.fm/jalisonpaulyahoocom/episodes/Monica-Fullerton–Founder-of-Spouse-ly–Milspouse-and-Mompreneur–Connecting-the-Military-Community-ebfesi

Las Vegas, Nevada-

Spouse-ly was founded by Monica Fullerton— a determined Air Force military spouse, who wanted to make a difference in the military community that would benefit all military spouses, service members and veterans all over the U.S. 🇺🇸

SHOP HERE 👉: http://www.spouse-ly.com

Along her military journey she met many talented individuals who own and operate small businesses or have a passion to start one.

After researching social media groups where people asked for certain products or services, it was at that moment she realized how great the need was to create a company that provides a large platform for people to support Mil/Vet spouse & service member owned businesses all over the United States.

http://www.spouse-ly.com

That’s when Spouse-ly was born, a one-stop marketplace shop to buy & support Military/Veteran owned businesses. On Spouse-ly you can find both products & services, creating a true one-stop shop.

http://www.spouse-ly.com
http://www.spouse-ly.com

Spouse-ly is unique in that it provides an option to search for local products and services.

The company’s mission is to continue to provide ongoing resources, training, support, and marketing to help everyone grow to their fullest potential whether they are buying or selling on Spouse-ly.

When you shop on Spouse-ly you are truly supporting talented individuals through a company designed to be inclusive and supportive of the military community.

SHOP & SUPPORT MILITARY/VETERAN SPOUSE & SERVICE MEMBER OWNED BUSINESSES ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES.

SHOP HERE 👉: http://www.spouse-ly.com

For more information on Spouse-ly, look here:

http://www.facebook.com/spousely

http://www.instagram.com/spouse.ly 

Email: support@spouse-ly.com 

Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Seth’s Wish is Magic.

Fayetteville, North Carolina

Never have I experienced a place like Seth’s Wish in my forty plus years.

When you enter through the door you are immediately affected by the buzz of energy, genuine care, concern and love that envelops this humble organization.

It is filled with…

Warmth,

Kindness,

Laughter,

Respect,

And MAGIC.

http://www.sethswish.com/

“I’m not homeless. I come here to— try to help— that’s a blessing. Spread a positive message.” -Arthur, a Seth’s Wish regular and very kind man who loves to help spread positivity to those struggling.”

I recently spent a couple of hours volunteering with this amazing organization and was overcome by the respect and attentiveness given to each individual who walked through the door.

Seth’s Wish started in 2014 when Seth Wofford (Lindsey and Noah Wofford’s son), then age 9, met a man named Steve who lived behind his school whom the family visited for months, and carried on countless conversations. Seth made a wish to be able to help Steve and others like him.

Seth’s Wish earned a 501(c)3 status in October 2015 and its founders along with managing director Stacy Graybill along with volunteers have been working hard to carry out their vision. 

Unfortunatly, Steve— the inspiration behind the agency— passed away in 2017, but the organization continues to serve others in honor of him, and the impact he had on Seth’s heart.

The organization strives to create an inclusive community for individuals facing homelessness, poverty and food insecurity by providing basic needs such as delicious hot meals, hygiene needs, clothing and so much more in order to help these individuals thrive.

During my time volunteering, I spent some time talking with folks who frequent Seth’s Wish. The overall mindset was that they would be lost without this safe haven.

“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.

Lindsey Wofford, founder, and Stacy Graybill, managing director, spoke with me recently on Hodge Podge Podcast about their mission to help feed and care for those struggling in our community.

Listen to our impactful and inspirational conversation here: https://anchor.fm/jalisonpaulyahoocom/episodes/Seths-Wish–Helping-the-Homeless-and-Hungry-ebaa5g

Here are some ways YOU can help Seth’s Wish:

CONTACT SETH’S WISH HERE:

http://www.sethswish.com/

https://www.facebook.com/sethswish/

344 S. Cool Spring St. Fayetteville, NC 28301

Phone: (910) 476-6613

Email: audley79@msn.com

Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Veteran Voices

New York, New York—

Poetic Theater Productions’ 5th Annual showcase of original work by veterans—Veterans Voices— expressing their experiences and stories from within and beyond the military will be held this coming Saturday, March 7th at 2pm at Wild Project, 195 East 3rd Street, New York, NY. The event will feature theater, poetry and music. 

According to Eastern North Carolina native and veteran Omar Columbus— whose poetry will be featured at the event, “Poetic Theater Productions’ 5th annual showcase of original work by veterans, Veteran Voices calls upon the traditions of past warrior cultures such as the Greeks, Romans, and Native Americans, who welcomed their military home in rituals of storytelling.

Reviving these practices, military veteran artists take the stage to share their stories and experiences in a way that is both healing and informs others, sharing the moral burden of war.

Following the showcase, there will be a post-show discussion on the movement to support existing and new programming in New York which highlights veteran voices…

Veterans and students can get $15 discount tickets (just choose the veteran or student option when purchasing online)… And please know that any veteran that wants to attend will not be turned away due to a lack of funds.”

Omar Columbus, NC native, Photographer, Poet and Veteran

For more information on Veterans Voices and to purchase tickets for the event, look here:

https://poetictheaterproductions.ticketspice.com/veteranvoices2020

-Alison Paul Klakowicz

Host and Creator of Hodge Podge Podcast and Blog

http://www.hodgepodgebyalisonklak.com

Author of the award-winning children’s book, Mommy’s Big, Red Monster Truck

http://www.alisonpaulklakowicz.com

Lifestyle, Writing, Podcasting, Military Life, Inspirtation, North Carolina

Yoga, Brunch and Bookclub- YES, Please!

Guiding Wellness Institute

Fayetteville, NC

Did you say—

Yoga✅

Brunch✅

AND,

Bookclub✅???

Say no more, I’m there!

What better way to spend a day than in mindful reflection!?

Caring for your body and soul, eating delicious food and drinking blissful adult beverages while discussing thought provoking literature surrounded by fabulous company— AND in a beautiful setting?

That pretty much sums up the experience I had last weekend at Guiding Wellness Institute.

The holistic wellness center is masterful in curating monthly events that incorporate wellness practices into perfect weekend outings appealing to the young and old, single or betrothed, hardcore yogi or novice.

All are welcome!

AND all will enjoy!

I attended the Yoga, Brunch and Bookclub this past Sunday which fell on Valentines weekend and made for a fabulous Galentines outing!

A 60 minute gentle flow vinyasa yoga class was taught by GWI CEO Kelsey Timas. The lantern lit studio paired with beautiful acoustic music playing in the background and Kelsy’s fluid class instruction kept each student engaged and made for a perfect yoga experience.

Following yoga, guests were treated to a gorgeous brunch prepared by Brittany Moore, GWI Holistic Wellness Coach.

During our brunch, attendees engaged in an enlightening conversation regarding the Bookclub pick—Elizabeth Gilbert’s novel Eat, Pray, Love. It was lovely to reflect on a book focused on self-awareness, self-acceptance, self-growth and self-healing.

Overall the experience was wonderful and although most of those who attended the event met as strangers, I feel confident that we left as friends.

Mark your calendars for the next Yoga, Brunch and Bookclub May 3, 2020 from 11am-2pm.

For more information, go here: http://guidingwellness.com/

– Alison Paul Klakowicz

Creator and Host of Hodge Podge Podcast and Blog

Author of the award-winning children’s travel and adventure picture book, Mommy’s Big, Red Monster Truck

http://www.alisonpaulklakowicz.com