15th Jan2013

Life {My Word for the Year}

by Daenel

Life {Living Outside the Stacks}

I’ll be turning 40 in March, this has been a difficult thing for me to accept. Forty has always symbolized something I never wanted to be: old. please read that word with the appropriate amount of shuddering and nose crinkling I remember looking at the forty~something~year~old women of my youth and thinking they were looking at me with something that bordered on pity, mingled with contempt, and tinged with jealousy. And they looked frumpy. Looking back, I realize that was just my own youthful misperception of grown women. In reality, they weren’t paying me or my silliness any attention. As for looking dowdy, everyone in the 80s and 90s looked old compared to now; chalk it up to the heavy makeup, big hair, and thick shoulder pads. And, truth be told, that neon wasn’t helping anyone either.

In the last few weeks, as I’ve watched the news and listened to stories of  lives ended way too soon, I’ve realized something: forty is not old. Forty is a blessing; a blessing that not everyone is given. Psalm 103:15~18 {NIV} says:

(15) As for man, his days are like grass, he flourishes like a flower of the field;

(16) the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.

(17) But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children ~

(18) with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.

So I will accept this blessing of life and the wrinkles that come with it. The grays, I may have to fight until I come across the last bottle of dye. But I want my life to be one of gratitude for the continuous gift of His eternal love, mercy, and grace. I know that He did not spare my life from premature birth, car accidents, and cancer for no reason, Jeremiah 29:11 tells me that He has plans for my life. Therefore, my vow to myself and to God is to live this life that He has blessed me with to the fullest.

2013 is the year of LIFE!

30th Jun2011

Today I Said “Good~Bye”

by Daenel

Harry K. Miller LibraryI remember how nervous I was when I first went to the campus for my interview.  I wasn’t sure what to expect ~ would everyone be nice, would it be one of those stuffy interviews where everyone asks questions and no one smiles or would it be relaxed and informal.  I went in prepared for the worst and hoping for the best.  It was better than I expected and by the end of the day I had a job offer.

That was almost ten months ago.  Today I had to say good~bye.  Have you ever met someone and thought Wow, I can’t believe we just click like this?  Well, that’s how it was with my co~workers and me.  From the first day I stepped into the library until today when I took my last step out of the library, I felt as if I belonged.  How many people can say that they truly enjoyed working with everyone in their office?

We’ve made all the promises to keep in touch.  Exchanged email.  Friended each other on Facebook.  I hope the connection remains and I hope whoever sits at my desk on Monday morning realizes what an incredible group of people he or she is about to encounter.

14th Jun2011

Advice for Miss 17 Upon Her Graduation

by Daenel

Squeekerz and Miss 17For 17 years, you’ve listened to my “Dos” and “Don’ts”.  You’ve shrugged me off at times and, at others, you’ve nodded and agreed.   I’ve shared my struggles of single motherhood with you.  Walking miles in the hot Louisiana sun because I didn’t have a car or the money for a taxi, just to get you from the babysitter’s house.   We’ve grown from a team of two to a family of seven.  You must of have known that Dad was the man for us, you loved him from the start.  So much has happened in the seventeen years that we’ve shared this journey together…

A few days ago, I turned to my friends and asked them to share their words of wisdom with you as you go forth into the next stage of your life.  Please take heart and listen to the wisdom of the web…

From my friends on Twitter:


Advice 1

Advice 3

Advice 2

Advice 5

Advice 6

When you kids were little, I used to tell you that God handpicked each and every one of you to live with me.  I thank Him for trusting me with the privilege of watching you grow into a beautiful young lady.  It has been my honor and I look forward to watching you walk your path.  My prayer for you is that you’ll trust in God, follow your heart and let common sense prevail.  Now get outta my house!

02nd Jun2011

Book Review: Jolt!: Get the Jump on a World that’s Constantly Changing by Phil Cooke

by Daenel


In Jolt! television producer, social media guru, and cultural commentator Phil Cooke helps you discover how you can navigate today’s culture of disruption and actually use it to your advantage.  You’ll learn that changing a company and changing your life are based on virtually the same key principles.

The world is changing at light speed, but mastering the power of change can revolutionize your business and your life.  Stop feeling overwhelmed with changing technology, culture, business trends, and values and regain the confidence that can give you a real advantage.

The book reveals twenty~five “jolts” that anyone can leverage to establish a new direction, maximize potential, overcome insecurity, and create an amazing future and legacy.  Jolt! will revolutionize your thinking and shake up your life!


Phil Cooke has produced media programming in more than forty countries around the world, and in the process, was shot at, survived two military coups, fell out of helicopter, and in Africa, was threatened with prison.  Meanwhile, he’s helped some of the largest nonprofit organizations in the world navigate periods of dramatic disruption and change.

According to former CNN journalist Paula Zahn, Phil is rare ~ a working producer in Hollywood with a PhD.  He’s appeared on MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, and FOX News, and his work has been profiled in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Wall Street Journal.

He’s lectured at universities, including Yale, University of California at Berkeley, and UCLA and is an adjunct professor at The King’s University and Biola University in Los Angeles.

Find out more at:

Facebook:  Phil Cooke

Twitter:  @PhilCooke

Website:  Phil Cooke


I’m not a real big self~help book reader but this book truly resonated with me.  You’ll find out exactly why in the next few weeks…  Anyway, in my younger days, I craved change.  I thrived on waking up and not knowing what I was going to do from one minute to the next.  I know, not exactly conducive to my life in the Army but, believe it or not, I was able to make it work.  In the last 13 years or so, I’ve become complacent ~ I go to the same grocery store, shop at the same clothing stores, speak to the same people, very little in my life changes.  And I’ve become used to it.  I find a great deal of comfort in the routine of it all.  In fact, going to new places scares me.

This fear is a new emotion for me…

I miss the fearlessness.  I miss that desire to experience new ~ new people, new surroundings, etc.  And Jolt! has given me just the er, um,” jolt” I needed to reclaim the dreams that I once had.  Cooke offers tips on how to make changes or adapt to changes that confront us by going back to our childhoods and recalling the dreams that we had when nothing was impossible.  He asks us to think big and imagine there are no limits, then focus those dreams within the realm of the possible.

Cooke also stresses the need for us to stop looking backward and reliving past failures.  Moving forward and changing one’s life requires forgiveness (of ourselves as well as others).  My favorite quote from the book is “Some think it’s holding on that makes one strong; sometimes it’s letting go” by Sylvia Robinson, a vocalist.  This book is chock full of inspirational quotes by everyone from Ronald Reagan to Fyodor Dostoevsky.

I would recommend this book to anyone who’s experiencing change in their lives or anyone who’s desiring to make significant life changes.



Disclaimer: This book was provided to me courtesy of Thomas Nelson free of charge in exchange for a review.

12th Apr2010

Monday Mingle: Blogging and Lofty Ambitions

by Daenel

Monday Mingle is hosted by Eighty MPH Mom.  If you’d like to participate, simply create a short vlog and link up to the linky.  Don’t forget to grab the badge and leave some comment love for your fellow participants.  Afterall, isn’t that what mingling is all about?

This week’s questions were submitted by Dee @ Redheaded Stepchild and Say Anything:

1.  Do you remember the first blog you started to follow?  If so, who and why did you keep going back for more?

2.  Pretend you are 16.  Being able to look ahead at your life now, what would you, at 16, have found most shocking or unexpected about the life you ended up having?

3.  As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?  What would you be now if you could do it all over again?

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