Be The Change We Want to See in The World

“Be the change we want to see in the world.” You may have heard this quote that was derived from Gandhi’s words or a version of it. Words so often seen they might even sound corny or cliche.

Very recently for me, these words have transformed into a well known quote to a very real truth. I still am very passionate about the power that friendships have and how they can change the world for the better. This passion initially drove me to write my book, “The Friendship Effect,” to spread the power of friendships with as many people as I possibly could via my book. My hope is that my book has been able to help people who have read it in positive ways.

I am ready again to be the change I want to see in the world. I am a mother of two girls both under the age of three. My oldest daughter will soon be entering into the world of pre school. Pre school can appear simple and harmless; though the reality is it is anything but that. Along with being a wonderful learning experience I have come to learn that pre school is also where friendship issues begin to surface. A local Montessori director has informed me that these issues begin as early as 15 to 18 months of age.

If you are a parent, you want nothing more than the best for your children. You want to keep them safe and out of harms way. The thought of my daughters being victims of friendship issues, some being: teased, left out and bullied makes me feel sick to my stomach. The truth is some sort of confrontation with these issues in my children’s lives are inevitable, whether it be in pre school or later. This fact I cannot stop.

What I can do is be the change I want to see for my children with this issue instead of just sit back and bite my nails waiting for the inevitable to happen. Not only do I want to protect my children, I want to protect all children. I want to protect your children, your nieces, nephews, friend’s children, grandchildren and the list could go on.

How can I do this? Allow me to tell you.

I am excited to announce that I am currently creating a friendship children’s book series. I will begin writing the books for pre school age children all the way until high school. The books will be standard based and bilingual, in english, spanish and eventually in Hawaiian too. Teachable lessons will accompany the books.

I have realized that to make a profound effect in the world I have to begin where friendship issues arise; in the early stages of life. There also will be a parent component that will accompany the series throughout all grade levels. Children model those they are around most, which typically are their parents and or main caregivers. For this friendship book series to really be effective parents need to also be knowledgable and carry out to the best of their abilities appropriate friendship skills.

I will be choosing two to three local pre schools, at least one private and one public, to be the pilot schools for the book series. Each school will measure friendship issues before using the book series and after.

I am aware this is a project that will take time. Though, I am so motivated and excited to dive into it that I know things will start progressing right along. I am so thrilled to begin that when I am up in the middle of the night/very early morning with my seven month old I contemplate staying up and working on it after I put her back to bed. Then reality kicks in and I remind myself that I need sleep to properly raise my two little ones:)

If you are interested in the progress of this project and or have any input please contact me and or follow my blog and website: updates.

I am looking into getting a grant for this project. If for some reason that is not an option funding will be necessary. If you or anyone you know would like to donate to this cause please follow this link:

I really believe this series can help be part of an answer to bigger issues in our world, such as: school shootings, intense bullying and harassment. If we can nip this in the bud early and teach young children to grow up treating others with respect, non judgment and kindness we really can make a difference.

Keep in mind that you all can be the change you want to see in the world too. It can be in a small and or large way. Is there something in your life, such as: your work, home, school, relationships where you would like to see things go differently? Maybe it is as simple as keeping your house cleaner to something bigger as changing the attitudes of the people in your work place. If this is the case, go for it, make a difference.

Together we can be the change we want to see in the world.

Is It Ever Too Late to Say “I’m Sorry?”

Have the two words, “I’m sorry” ever stopped you from continuing on with a special friendship? This has been the case for me. Allow me to share with you the story of my first best friend.

Similar to a first love, was the relationship I had with my first best friend. Our relationship was innocent, new and untainted with prior friendship experiences. We became friends in kindergarten and from there became inseparable.

We hung out at school every chance we could. When school wasn’t in we’d either be at her house or mine. When we weren’t together we were usually talking on the phone. I remember every time our favorite song would come on the radio, one of us would call the other and we’d sing it together. We made weekly lists (because of course there were updates:) of the top five cutest boys in school. She came on all of my family vacations, even if they were out of state. She was a part of our family. We were like two peas in a pod.

Our friendship began to change when junior high came around. It was apparent that we were growing apart. I no longer had anything in common with her except our amazing childhood years. I began to hang out with friends who had more common interests as I did, such as sports and school leadership. Instead of just telling her that I felt we were growing apart and that I was going to venture out to hang out with new people I said nothing at all and we completely stopped hanging out. I had heard from mutual friends that I had really hurt her feelings and she never knew why we had stopped being friends.

My immaturity and lack of communication skills at the time enabled me to hurt someone who was so special to me; that I have always regretted. Her and I completely lost touch and had not spoken to each other since seventh grade.

Since then she always has been in my thoughts. I had reoccurring dreams with her in them. She was the one relationship in my life that had concluded on an unfinished note, because of my doing.

Sixteen years later I thank fate and Facebook for our paths crossing. I had posted a blog on Petaluma Batman’s Facebook page of a friendship lesson we taught together. She followed Petaluma Batman on Facebook and posted a comment to me and the teacher whose class I taught in, which said, “How great, two of my favorite people working together.”

I recall being equally excited and shocked after seeing her comment, because all these years I perceived that she probably hated me for how I acted. I instantly responded back and from there we began to email each other.  In one of our correspondences I thoroughly explained to her how genuinely sorry I was for our past and that I would understand if my apology was too late.

One thing that did not change the slightest over our years of disconnect was how loving, genuine and kind of a person she was. She responded with, “Some people never even say sorry, so thank you for your apology. Of course I accept it.”

All of those years I had carried in my heart, with a heavy sorrow how our friendship ended. If I just would have sought her out and apologized sooner, I could have made things better for us both.

That is the thing: I thought that too much time had passed and that “I’m sorry” would have been too late. I was wrong. Saying, “I’m sorry” to a friend can never come too late on your part. Whether that person accepts the apology or not depends on the beneficiary of the apology. Though, whatever the outcome may be, you always have the power and choice to attempt to change any way a friendship ended, or something unfortunate that happened in a friendship, small or large.

I am excited to say that my friend and I still correspond from time to time. I am highly anticipating for the New Year to come when we are going to plan a time to reunite.

If you have someone in mind that at one time in your life was very close to you and still dear to your heart, though you two are separated because of some sort of difference; think about if two simple words from you can be the start to reuniting. Maybe you won’t have a physical reunion, where you two become the great friends you used to be, but maybe you will gain closure from a negative experience. Always remember it is never too late to say “I’m sorry.”

What is the Right Age to Begin Teaching Your Children How to be Great Friends?

If you have kids, may want them in the future, or have friends or family with kids read on. Even for you grandparents whose kids are grown up and have provided you with precious grandchildren this blog can be valuable for you to read and share.

When do you think you consciously began to be aware of friendships in your life? Do you remember anyone ever teaching you how to be a good friend when you were younger? Possibly your initial memories of friendships begin when you were in elementary school or maybe younger. I remember being inseparably close with my first best friend when I was in early elementary school.

What I do not remember is that I began to learn about friendship from the time I was around two years old. My parents never took me to any special “friendship” classes or taught me about friendships as they did my abc’s. Though, whether they consciously knew it or not they fostered friendship values within me at a young age by modeling. I saw and heard how they communicated with each other, family, friends, acquaintances and strangers. They did this with such genuine respect, care, love, thoughtfulness, kindness and non-judgment.

Growing up I vividly remember my parents constantly giving hugs to each other, friends and even strangers who they met for the first time. They always were giving, even when they did not have much for all of us. We always would have their single friends over for weekly dinners and every holiday. My dad worked his way up to being a grocery store manager (one of the best around) and he would and still does employee his friends in need when he can. My mother has always made little crafty, thoughtful gifts to lift other’s spirits or just because. My house growing up was an open house, where any and all felt welcome. There always was someone at our house who came to confide their sorrows and joys with my parents because they were such attentive and caring listeners. No one was ever unacceptable in my parent’s eyes. They never judged anyone and always gave the benefit of the doubt to all they met.

As I grew up I displayed some of the qualities that my parents had modeled and still do today. The interesting thing is I can already see my two and a half year old daughter modeling some of my husband and my qualities. Ninel has recently stepped into the world of compliments. It started a couple months ago when I was getting ready for a rare “girl’s night out.” I had on a cute going out shirt that Ninel is not accustomed to seeing and she spontaneously said:

“Wow mama. Me gusta tu camisa.”

This in English is, “Wow mom, I like your shirt.”

Her compliment melted my heart and made me feel good. Since then she has continued to compliment me, her sister and dad’s articles of clothing.

She also just recently started coming up to me at random times throughout the day with a loving smile on her face and will say, “Besos y abrazos (kisses and hugs)” and she will come give me a kiss and hug and then go about her business. She gives repeated kisses and hugs to her little sister too.

I know that Ninel has begun to convey these friendship qualities because daily I compliment and give hugs to her and others.

Some of you may be thinking, well I don’t want my children, future children or children I know to be exact replicas of me. They won’t be. I believe that children are born with their own innate qualities. My two daughters are proof of this. They are completely different. Even though Ninel gives hugs to me and her sister, she really likes her space from people she doesn’t know. Where as Lena is more willing to let others hold her and hang out with her. So the great thing about modeling friendship qualities to your children is it will be a base for them. When they get older and come more into their own they will take what they learned from you and turn it into their own style.

I believe there is not a time that is too early to begin modeling friendship qualities to your children. They will not begin to speak more until around two years old where you can physically see them conveying the qualities you teach. Though, little ones are like sponges. They retain so much that we are not aware of. We are their first teachers. Kids are copy cats. They copy what we say and do. In saying that think about what kind of a friend you would like to teach your little one to be and person for that matter. Maybe you always wished that growing up your home could have been the meet up place for you and your friends. If so, create that for your little ones, so they can learn that everyone should have a place to be welcome.

I have begun to actively teach friendship qualities in more specific ways to Ninel. She got invited to her first dress up Halloween party this year and her party favor was a hula hoop. She loved her hula hoop and had a blast at the party. Together we made a “thank you” card and personally dropped it off with little pumpkin sippy cups for her friends who hosted the party. When we were leaving her friend’s house Ninel had a smile on her face. I asked her, “I see you’re smiling. Did giving the card to your friend’s make you feel good inside?” She answered yes. The cool thing is I really could tell she did feel good inside by her body mannerisms.

Just last week we baked and passed out pumpkin bread to folks in a retirement community to spread cheer this holiday season. In doing this Ninel began to learn how much others appreciate thoughtful treats. She was “thanked” many times after passing out bread. She was shy and wouldn’t pass out bread in the beginning, though by the end she was a bread passing out machine.

I know as a parent it seems that someone or some article is always telling us what more we can do to be a better parent. For me it is overwhelming and can make me feel like I am not doing enough or am a good enough parent. In saying that my hope in writing this blog is not to make you feel like you have to turn your little ones into instant friends and be these amazing modelers of friendship. My wish is that it brings awareness to you that if you choose you can begin to foster friendship qualities within your children, nieces, nephews, grandkids, friend’s kids, future kids in whatever way works and is easy for you.

Thank you for reading my blog. I really appreciate your time.

What Does Spreading “Thanks and Joy” to Others Look Like For You?

All of us have our own styles for many things in life: the way we dress, music we listen to, how we communicate, what we do for fun and the list can go on. The same goes for spreading thanks and joy to others.  How you spread joy can and probably does look different than how I do. Baking and bringing pumpkin bread to the people in a retirement community such as I recently did may not be something that sparks your interest; which is completely okay.

At the end of the day what really matters in regards to spreading thanks and joy to others is that the beneficiaries are affected in a positive way. Anyway you decide to spread joy and thanks to others will be thoughtful and unique to you, which will mostly likely affect someone in a positive way.

I believe there is a scale of thoughtfulness when spreading joy to others. Acts of thoughtfulness can range on the scale from small to enormous. Usually, however, we are unable to determine whether our own thoughtful acts are small or big. Only the beneficiary of our actions can determine that fact. As Oscar Wilde said, “The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention.” I believe that no act of thoughtfulness is too small, which sets you up for a hundred percent success when being thoughtful to others.

Now that you know that whatever you choose to do to spread joy to others will most likely reveal a positive outcome, let’s come up with some ideas of what you can do this holiday season to spread joy to others. First of all, think of someone, or a cause you would like to bring joy to. Is there a family member, friend or local group that is consistently on your mind? Maybe this person or group come to mind because they have done something specific for you that has made you happy. Or possibly you know of someone who is going through a trying time and you want to bring some light to their dark time. Keep in mind you can do thoughtful acts towards people or groups you do not personally know but have heard of or seen around. Maybe you have a coworker you see every day but have never met that seems they could use some joy their way.

Okay, now hopefully you have someone in mind that you would like to spread joy to. Now let’s figure out how you are going to do that. Recall, any thoughtful act you display, big or small will be wonderful. There are a plethora of acts you can do, some easier and simpler than others. A simple thoughtful act could be, giving a genuine compliment. Maybe that coworker you see every day and have never met is always dressed to the “T” and you can tell that is important to her. You can introduce yourself to her say, “Love your shoes; you always have the best outfits.” It may seem stereotypical to think that bringing joy to someone would be to complement their appearance versus an inner beauty quality. Though, if you do not know someone well enough yet to compliment them about who they are as a person a general compliment is great. You never know possibly the person you complement really has self-esteem issues and your compliment makes her feel good and happy the rest of the day.

Daily, whether it is a stranger or a friend, if I see something I like about someone I make sure to tell them. Why hold in a compliment you are thinking when it could potentially make someone’s day better? When I was at the retirement community one of the ladies who we passed bread out to had the most beautiful light turquoise eyes. I told her, “Wow, you have such amazing eyes, they are beautiful.” Her entire demeanor changed after the compliment: the color of her pale skin became a rosy pink and her beautiful blue eyes lit up. A huge smile appeared on her face as she responded shyly, “Oh, well thank you.” A simple, genuine compliment can and really does go a long way. One caveat about giving compliments: look the person in their eyes when you give the compliment and deliver it from a genuine place within. Applying these two things will make the person really feel the compliment on a deeper level.

If you want to put a little more thought and effort into a thoughtful act for someone versus a compliment, think about what the person in question needs and or really likes. Possibly your friend just broke up with her boyfriend and could use a “girls night out” that you arrange special for her. Next time you are grabbing coffee get your friend a coffee as well and surprise him with it. I am sure you have friends with kids. If so, it is a guarantee that your friends could use a break and some down time. You can offer to watch their kids for a couple of hours while they do something for themselves. Maybe there is a charity or cause that you want to help. You can donate and also spread the word to your friends and family too.

It is also helpful to think about what you are good at and enjoy doing before committing thoughtful acts towards others. In doing that you can do something that is easy for you and you enjoy, which will help you stay balanced while doing good deeds for others. If you do something for others that includes something you are good at, then you may not have to put as much work into the act as you would something you are not that great at; this will help if you are pressed for time and will help keep it fun.

So, think about what you like to do and apply it to the thoughtful acts towards your friends or strangers.  If you are an amazing cook, make your friend a favorite meal of theirs. Maybe you are a wine connoisseur and your friend likes wine. Have your friend over and set up a little wine tasting for you both.  If you are still thinking “I am unable to do things like this” or “I am unsure what I am really good at,” then I assure you, you just need to continue searching for what it is you can do that is unique. In the mean time you can do easier things such as: paying for the person’s coffee behind you in the drive through line.

The sky is the limit for ways you can spread thanks and joys to others this holiday season. I hope you now have people and ideas in mind to spread joy to. I am very passionate about spreading joy to others. In saying that if you commit a thoughtful act to someone this holiday season; whether it be a genuine compliment, a thoughtful gift or anything else please let me know by posting to my Facebook “The Friendship Effect” page and I will give you or anyone of your choice a free e-book of my book “The Friendship Effect.”

Have fun spreading joy and thanks to others. It will make you and others feel great:)

Share and Spread “Thanks” Versus Getting Caught in the Holiday Zone

It seems every year the holiday season along with all of its busyness finds us earlier and earlier. There are also many priceless feelings and smells that go hand and hand with the holidays, several being: feel good holiday movies shared with loved ones, leaves turning into vibrant orange, yellow and red colors, pumpkin pie, Christmas trees, peppermint lattes and holiday parties. Accompanied with holiday’s special gifts to us are holiday stresses wrapped in their own decor. This decor can be conveyed as: stressful holiday shopping, wanting to spend money we may not have, over booking our time to accommodate everyone’s needs but our own and feeling lonely at such a time that should be shared with others.

It is so easy to get caught in the holiday “zone” with everything we feel we “have to get done” in a certain time frame. With this mind set we tend to forget what the holidays are truly for and about. I have definitely been a culprit of being caught in the holiday “zone.” Every year I spend so much time preparing holiday cards to send out, along with detailed Christmas shopping for family and friends. Also, every year at some point in the holiday season I find myself feeling overwhelmed, pressed for time and money. Due to these feelings I am not the most festive or cheery me I can be to those around me. Of course I know we can never always be “on” and in the best of spirits at all times; it’s not humanly normal or healthy. Though, what we can do is choose how we are going to spend our time and energy, even in a busy holiday season.

This holiday season I choose to spend my time by spreading thanks to others versus getting caught in the holiday zone. An example of this is what I, my girls and a friend and her kids did today. We all baked pumpkin bread and went to a retirement living center and passed it out to the people who lived there. It was priceless to see the smiles on the elderly women and men’s faces when they saw our children, along with yummy pumpkin bread. It was a win win for all who participated. As parent’s we were able to begin to foster in our young children doing good deeds for others and our children were able to begin to experience that “feel good inside” feeling of doing something kind for others.

I know as a mama of two that time is precious and there really isn’t any extra time in the day for much. A woman at the retirement center said to me as I was holding my six month old daughter in one arm and my two and a half year old daughter in my other arm, while passing out pumpkin bread, “Well, you sure have your hands full. I bet they keep you busy. Where did you find the time to bake?” I answered with, “I had a little helper.” Which I did, my daughter helped, which allowed her to experience the event full circle. To even more deeply answer the woman’s question: I didn’t find any extra magical time anywhere. I just simply made it a priority. We all, including myself create daily “lists” of things we “need” to do. Though the reality is that we don’t “have” to do anything we do not want to. Everything we do every day is a conscious choice.

In saying that, this holiday season, I invite you to choose to go an extra step and find a way that suits you to share and spread “thanks” to others. The great thing is you can make it feasible by including your family and friends. Another benefit of going to the retirement home is I got to also share that time with a good friend of mine.

Happy holiday season to you all; I hope this time of year for you is one that will be abundant with many fun times and friendships.

Food for Soul-Women’s Friendship Month soon, treat yourself.

Your soul is made for connection.
Much like hunger tells you when you need food and exhaustion tells you when you need sleep, loneliness tells you when you long for more connection. And most of us amazing women who are busy, networked, and tired are feeling that desire and trying to ignore it.
This September– International Women’s Friendship Month– let’s stop trying to talk ourselves out of why we don’t have the energy and time to connect, and instead actually just acknowledge that our souls long for more connection.
  • For some of us it’s because we’ve recently moved, changed jobs, or ended relationships– and know we need to start building the relationships that can support our lives.
  • For some of us it’s because we’re introverts or shy and while we know we need a few relationships of substance, the very idea of how to start them overwhelms us.
  • For some of us, we know everyone and have more friends than we can keep in touch with, but the truth is that we still hear that whisper because we know we still need to deepen some relationships and foster more vulnerability and intimacy.
  • And for some of us, to surround ourselves with healthy relationships, we know it’s time to let go of a few, the bring closure, to grieve, and to end what has run its course.
So if you hear that whisper that you’d like more local friends who can add value to your life…then I am excited to tell you about an awesome program that is scheduled this September called:
“The Friendships You’ve Always Wanted! Learning a Better Way to Meet-Up, Build-Up, and Break-Up with Your Friends.”
This course was created by 13 of the leading experts on friendship and healthy relationship so that this September hundreds of women can all commit together to choosing friendships as their theme for the month!
The interviews include New York Times best-selling authors, psychologists, sociologists, professors, and all kinds of amazing teachers who have come together to inspire you, teach you, and challenge you to take your friendships to the next level! The course is hosted by a woman I so admire for her work in female friendships– Shasta Nelson is the CEO of (a female friendship matching website) and the author of Friendships Don’t Just Happen! She’s been on the Today Show, Katie Couric’s show, Fox News, and most recently interviewed for an article in this summer’s Women’s Health magazine.
Join me and 100′s of women this Friendship Month as we all commit to doing what it takes to surround ourselves with the community we know we want!
In this powerful and inspiring program you’ll learn:
    • Why needing new friends is normal—and how to show up with less guilt, anxiety, and shame.
    • The one thing more important to friendship than chemistry
    • The best ways to make friends in a way that is congruent to your personality
    • The five science-based accelerators that deepen our friendships
    • How many people you need to meet to actually find the number of friends you want
    • The biggest obstacle to friend-making and how to best respond
    • The three most effective tips for making new friends
    • The biggest red-flags to watch out for and what to do when you see them showing up in your friendships!
    • How you can prevent friendships from being ruined by jealousy and competition
    • The boundaries that you need to set to ensure that you participate in mutually reciprocated friendships
    • The three most important practices you can add to your life to attract more love
    • Which of the five types of friends you already have and which ones you want to find
    • An exercise to help you feel less judgmental and jealous of your friends.
    • How to tell the difference between what friendships can be saved and which ones need to end
    • And so much MORE!
Our lives change so much that we are losing half our friends every 7 years. And it’s our responsibility to be replenishing those relationships so that we have the friendships around us that make us happy.
I really believe the world will become a better place as more and more women feel connected to each other,
With passion and purpose to helping the world become a better place through friendships,
p.s. This program starts on Sept. 4 with a LIVE call! For everyone who signs up before that day you’ll be entered 5 times in a raffle for a free airline trip to visit a girlfriend somewhere in the U.S., plus you’ll get a free copy of Shasta Nelson’s book Friendships Don’t Just Happen! Sign up now!

Casa Grande Friendship Effect Donation Day

In theme of International Friendship month I have fundraised (donors listed below) over $200 to get 40 of my recently published “The Friendship Effect” books to give to Casa Grande High School’s Human Interaction classes.

Since then I have met with one of the wonderful Human Interaction teacher’s Lynne Moquete. We have come up with a great lesson plan for her students based on my book.

I also have recently learned about a local hero, Petaluma Batman and his good deeds. I thought that he was the epitome of a great friend and decided it would be wonderful to partner up and do a good deed for Friendship month.

Petaluma Batman was more than happy to be of help and support my book’s cause: to help people and the world through the power of friendships.

This Monday the 11th Petaluma Batman and I will be in Mrs. Moquete’s first period class giving out my books and teaching our lesson. Petaluma Batman needs to attend to other business after the first class. I and Mrs. Moquete will be at Casa the remainder of the day teaching her final two classes and handing out the remainder of the books.

The student’s will learn about the two parts of my book. Part one, how to first be a true friend to yourself. Part two, how to be, create and maintain long lasting genuine friendships in today’s fast pace world. They will then begin to think about what it is they love and or think is really cool about themselves. This is a key part to being a good friend because once they know what it is they love about themselves they can act authentically to themselves and can show others the real them, which will attract more friends to them.

They will then learn about what judging is: examples of it, how it feels and how to refrain from judging others and the importance of that in friendships.

They will partner up with a uncommon partner and through prompt questions will get to know who their partner is behind their physical appearance and what they think they know about them. This exercise will allow the partners to find out how unique and special their partner is while eliminating previous judgments.

I am very excited to be teaching and spreading the importance and power of friendships to students at Casa Grande High School. High School is a time where many students are judged, feel alone and are without friends. My hope is to help these students and those also who already have friends to be better friends and to maintain their friendships.

I will write another blog after the day of teaching to relay how it all went.

I want to thank again the following people for their very generous monetary donations for making this event a reality: Lindsey Wert, Kelly Harness, Emelina Minero, Iris Dolowitz Tarou, John Holme, Wise Social Therapy, Angela Bruno, Julie Morely, Ben Parodi, Meghan Cremidis and Charlene Cunningham. THANK YOU:)

Dual Book Signing in Sonoma – Proceeds go to Sonoma Market’s choice of The Sonoma Boys and Girls Club

In honor of February being International Friendship month my mother Michelle Minero and I are doing a dual book signing/meet and greet Thursday, February 28th from 7-9pm at Reader’s Books Bookstore in Sonoma, CA.

My mother and I’s books proceeds and a portion of Reader’s Books proceeds for that day and the event will be donated to the Sonoma Boys and Girls Club. Sonoma Market’s manager Al Minero chose this foundation to be the recipient of the proceeds. He believed that The Boys and Girls Club would be a great choice to give the proceeds to as the Club reaches out to children in need, giving them support, encouragement and guidance; all friendship qualities.

Michelle Minero, recently published a book called: “Self-Love Diet: The Only Diet That Works” a book that focuses on loving oneself and being kind to our bodies as a few of the many ingredients of the Self-Love Diet, versus other typical diets where one tends to neglect the bodies natural needs. Michelle is a licensed marriage family therapist who specializes in eating disorder recovery. She created an intensive outpatient eating disorder program in 2000 and in 2005 founded EDRS (Eating Disorder Recovery Support, Inc.). Her dream is to see a world filled with people who love themselves and their bodies.

My book, “The Friendship Effect” is a two-part book that will teach you all you need to know to be a true friend and to create long-lasting genuine friendships. Part one focuses on being a friend to yourself and living a life based on what makes you happy, which will inevitably attract more friends your way. Part two spotlights the secrets to being a true friend, creating and sustaining lifelong friendships while showing why and how friendships are lifesaving and world changing. An array of studies and life-changing programs from gurus from around the world are also embedded throughout this book to assist you in creating a life that you are passionate about while making friendships.

My mother and I are both passionate about helping others and making the world a better place which is why we wrote our books, to spread our messages to as many people as we can. We are excited to be able to help a great local organization such as The Boys and Girl’s Club along the way.

Please join us and bring your friends and family, Thursday, February 28th from 7-9pm for this special event and help a great cause at the same time.

Reader’s Books

130 E. Napa Street

Sonoma, CA, 95476


If you have any questions about this event please feel free to email me at:


Amista Vineyards = Friendships

For the last couple weeks I have been in contact with Amista Vineyards Tasting Room Manager, Larri Ann Davis to partner up in spreading my and Amista Vineyard’s joint passion: friendships. Amista translates as “it makes friends” which is exactly what Amista Vineyards does to every person who walks through their door.

Today I was able to visit Amista Vineyards for the first time and as I was turning into their lot their sign instantly caught my attention; which has their name on it: Amista Vineyards then a semi circle connecting their name, which I later found out represented unity.

When I walked through the door of Amista I instantly felt great energy. The ambiance was cozy, relaxing and still was able to be fashionable in it’s colors, furniture and art work. There were fresh flowers around which made Amista feel alive.

I only saw one guy who I assumed was Patrick who I spoke with on the phone before I came and he accepted my hug with comfort as we were already friends. I then saw a lady walk out into the Tasting Room who I assumed was Larri Ann and she also was very receptive to my hug and had such a welcoming, sincere smile.

Larri Ann then proceeded to compliment my book that I had sent her earlier and said that her and the owner of Amista felt that we all were on the same page in regards to the importance and power of friendships. I loved when Larri Ann told me that one of Amista’s goals was to have everyone who walked in feel like they were at home: comfortable and welcome. That is exactly how I felt.

I am excited to share that Amista Vineyards and I will be partnering up Saturday February 16th, 2013. They will be pairing their Sparkling Syrah with chocolate dipped strawberries in theme of Valentine’s day weekend. This pairing will begin the 14th and end the 17th, from 11-4:30pm.

I will be partaking on the Saturday the 16th from 1-4:30pm. I will be doing a meet and greet/book signing where my book will be available to purchase.

I am really excited for the beginning of a great partnership and friendship with Amista Vineyards.

We would love to have more friends join us: please come and have some great Sparkling Syrah, chocolate dipped strawberries and learn about the power of friendships and how they can better the lives of people and the world through my book, “The Friendship Effect.”

For more information on “The Friendship Effect” please check out the website below:

For more information about Amista Vineyards please check out their website below:

Hope to see you all on Saturday, February 16th from 1-4:30pm:)


Anything is Possible

As a first time mom I have found that my time in the day is used a lot differently than it was before my daughter.

Before my daughter Ninel, if there was a task I wanted to start and finish in the same day or couple days I could do it. Maybe I would have to dedicate most of my day to the task, though I could get it done if I chose to put all of my time towards it.

Up until a couple months ago, I felt if there was a task, especially a writing and or computer related task that I really wanted to accomplish that it would take way longer than a day or two to complete. With my fifteen month old daughter I felt like a couple day task turned into a couple week task. My day would seem to fly by with feeding, toileting, cleaning, cooking and making sure my daughter had an enriching and fun, loving day. I would tell my husband that in order for me to get anything done that needed more attention and detail that I would have to do it late into the night or early morning when Ninel was still sleeping, or else it would take forever.

It wasn’t until a couple months ago that I learned that this belief I had was not a hundred percent true. I recently published and e-book called, The Friendship Effect, which I had been writing for six years. Before I began the publishing process I had been waiting to save enough money to pay for an amazing editor who I had wanted to work with for years. After a couple months of waiting, I could not stand it anymore. I was and am so passionate about the message in my book and the belief that it could help others and the world that I couldn’t wait a second longer; I wanted to get it out there.

At this same time, I also had a talk on my book that was coming up in two weeks. I made a decision that my book was going to be published as an e-book and ready for anyone who wanted to purchase it by the date of my talk.

It definitely took a lot of work to meet that goal. I did not end up using the editor I had anticipated though still used an absolutely amazing, efficient and talented editor for a more economical fee. I did stay up late into the nights and early mornings and did take up coffee for those two weeks:) I also learned that it was okay to let my daughter “be” when I was in the same room with her on the computer. I learned that I did not always have to be teaching her something or be right by her side. I believe this lesson for me also benefited Ninel, because it also taught her how to be even more independent and allowed her to do what she wanted during these times.

I was fortunate to grow up knowing that anything is possible. It was nice to be able to put that belief into action again while simultaneously taking care of my young daughter. Since then my book is available via all major retailer online book stores, some including and I chose not to stop there. I was grateful to have an article in my local paper in regards to my book:

I also created a Friendship Effect contest to spread the word about the power of friendships via my book, which is still in full force until August 31st:

I am currently in the works of getting my book in a paperback form. This will be another met goal in one to two months via

If I want to make something happen or achieve it, no one is in my way but me. Anything is possible and that is so exciting and invigorating. Have a wonderful rest of your day:)