Blogiversary Year 4

Do you know what today is? It’s my blogiversary! Yesssssss! We have reached 4 years of blogging. What an accomplishment! It has been my extreme pleasure to blog and bring you so much content. From starting this blog as an outlet from my stay at home mom days to now has been nothing short of a miracle. God is good!

I have learned about myself as a person. I re-read my blogs ALL the time. I literally want to see the growth that has taken place. From how they look, how they are edited, to what I am writing about, and what I put out. It needs to reflect who I am, what I want to represent, and what I hope you all get and that is the notion that we all just trying to be our best version of ourselves. Failure isn’t final. I love that about life. You can literally fail at something, take the time to heal and deal and then get up and make life happen.  It’s a personal choice that we all have to make. There is nothing we can’t bounce back from.

So every year I feel like I am getting stronger. In the first 3 years I was blogging but not as consistent as I am now. I like to attempt to give at least 3 fresh blogs a week and if you follow me on Facebook you know that I also reblog that are appropriate for Throwback Thursdays and Flashback Fridays. So there is rarely a day where blogs aren’t going out. What I like about my blogging tools now is that I can write them all up, edit them and set them to release on a day and time of my choosing. This is essential for me as my life on the daily is super busy. I love that I don’t have to choose between my regular life and my blog life. I plan my blogs a lot of them ahead of time. I also will still write when inspiration comes to me too. It’s really a mix between prep and go and being consistent with blogging. I use my blog planner everyday. My kids even say which planner is this one?  I have it on me at all times.

Greenide

I recently in this year collaborated with Greenide.  This relationship has been huge for me. Being able to step out of my comfort zone and write for other blogs have been amazing. If you haven’t gotten a chance than check the article on Sex and Kids and the one on losing weight

TCP

I also regularly collaborate with TCP, The Cultured Professional. It is filled with blogs from writers such as myself as well as podcasts and really a one stop shop to get all of the information that any and all cultured professionals are talking about.

Dream Deferred

What have I learned about myself this year, is that I can make any dream happen. From losing over 50 pounds, to running and competing in races, to being a better mom, taking solo trips and getting my zen back in my life, to forgiving and moving on from past issues, there’s nothing I can’t do.  From having to take some time to get used to my move to Philadelphia, to conquering motherhood (I am still learning), to being a wife the journey has been a bit crazy. I value the changes that has taken place even when I wasn’t in the place to receive it. I have been out of sync to where I needed to be because I wasn’t able to catch up due to holding onto the past.  I held myself back for quite some time because I hated change that I didn’t feel as if I was in control of!  I love control. I love being able to call the shots, but in life that’s not how it works. Often times I have had to be vulnerable to change. From getting my life back on track after discovering my weight had gotten so far out of control that it was causing me some severe health issues to letting go and allowing someone to teach me a few things about myself.

Followers

One thing that makes this all great is having amazing readers. From those who send me questions for the Ask Toi segments, to those that interact with me across all of my social media platforms you are the REAL MVP! Having people still believe in your dream from all around the world is amazing. Thank you to each and every one of you.

Friends and Family

I have to shout out my amazing family who stand behind me. From my husband who sometimes fills in reading things if I think something doesn’t sound right to being an impromptu camera man, thank you. He has been truly open to this as I blog about anything and everything and that includes him to a certain extent. My kids for loving that mommy has blog friends and for the many times that I attend events.  Thank you to the Storr kids for understanding that a balanced mom makes a better mom. To my amazing friends who read my blogs without me having to send you the links, thank you. To the friends who share my links without me asking, thank you. It takes one second to share and I appreciate you for that. To the ones that was shooting with me in the gym, thank you! To my blogging mentors, you are amazing. I have so many that if I forget I would be amiss but you know who you are. Your advice has made this blog that much better. To my graphic designer Angelo. You have been amazing, when I call and slide them fees over, you never cease to amaze me with everything that I need!

Health is Wealth

We added a new component to ToiTime and that is Health is Wealth by S.L. Efua Joe who is our health is wealth contributor. We will be back in the near future with more content. It is a page that is dedicated to challenging you on what is actual health and having you spend more time finding ways to eat better, take care of self so you can spend less of your money at a doctor’s office. It’s not an anti doctor but often times the very diseases we have can be attributed to the bad choices we take daily.

Blogging Goals

  • To get a better camera and take me from behind the scenes and more into the scenes. I will be posting more intimate pictures where I am in them instead of always getting the shot without me in it! I dislike the camera and I have no reason to so this upcoming year expect a lot more of ME.
  • Collaborations are coming. I am working with more brands and working with more bloggers.
  • Attend at least one blog conference so I can network with other bloggers.
  • Being consistent. This has been the greatest push of my life to do so and its paying off so we not going to stop we are going to keep growing

If I had to choose a dream job it would be being able to blog full-time, and travel with my family. Trust me I am working on it. My vision is for me to blog all around this beautiful world and allow my children to come along for the ride!

 

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Keep in mind in case you didn’t know you can follow me below:

Instagram

Facebook

Twitter

Pintrest

Snapchat

Ask Toi

You can also send all questions for Ask Toi to toitimeblog@gmail.com

Keep in mind that all questions submitted will be confidential. I will always give you a longer response than I do for the blog. I am here as an outlet. I will do my best to answer you and of course all answers are based upon my own experience. You at the end of the day should always do what’s best and safe for you and your life!

Most Requested Blogs of the Year

Drum Roll on the Most requested Blogs of the year in order; these are the most requested blogs of all time to a certain degree. So these are the issues that most of the readers come back to:

Boss issues:

Those who deflect

Going to a party without your wife as she wasn’t invited

Where are my Followers the Most Engaged

Out of the 30 countries that my blog has been read, these are the top 3:

  • United States
  • United Kingdom
  • Canada

 

 

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The Catch Up: November 14, 2017

I haven’t given a weekly update since October 30th.  Life has been happening and I am enjoying every minute of it. If you have been following me on Facebook than you know that I work hard to bring you the national days as many as I can.  With the holidays fast approaching like next week is Thanksgiving I have arranged that all posts have been set so I can enjoy some much-needed family time. I have taken a few days off from work as well so me and my little family can zone out with each other, wear Thanksgiving gear, and just eat and be merry.  I will still be posting blogs.  I will not be taking a total break.  We are going to finish the year strong. In the meantime, what has been going on?

Personal

I have been hitting the social scene pretty hard. I have been balancing that with my family, work, and my work out schedule. I think my planners are burning at this point. As the end of the year approaches there has already been an increase of more social events to attend. If there is anyone who like me deals with social anxiety this time of the year can be a huge issue for you. I understand. I try to get there on time because for me getting there late makes me feel like the spotlight is on me. Take deep breaths and play some calming or feel good music on the way.  I also try to make sure that I connect with at least one person and make that my go to person as I travel the room and greet others. I also make sure that I have an exit plan in place in case I get too overwhelmed. For the most part unless it’s a show or something I have to be at for the whole event.

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So far since the last update I have attended a yoga class, went to see Bad moms, attended my son’s soccer, went out for Halloween, and attended the Janet Jackson concert.  Holy get out of the house.  This doesn’t include my meet-ups for working out with friends so this girl is finally breaking out of her shell.

I can’t wait to enjoy some much-needed family time and I hope that you do the same with your families.

My job is doing a maintain challenge. The goal is to keep maintain where you are but if you go over 2 pounds you are disqualified.  This has helped me since I have changed my schedule to include 5 days at the gym, with 3 of those days being in the am.  So whatever you need to do so you can still eat them pies, cookies, and cakes I suggest you do. I am going to keep going but I will still enjoy some of the great holiday food!

Blog

We have been on the move. I have answered a slew of Ask Toi. I will continue to push those out as I am a bit behind.  If you have been asking why there are so many the holidays always brings stress.  As soon as that stress hits people need to vent. I am here. Ask your questions by sending an email to toitimeblog@gmail.com

If you have missed any blogs check them out ToiTimeblog

We have done over 10 or more blogs as I am averaging out to at least 4 or more blogs a week. A girl is feeling pretty good these blogging days! Thank you to all who have wished me a happy anniversary.  It’s still November. My social media pages will all be getting revamped.

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I have made changes to the blog itself. By Thanksgiving I will have changes to Instagram 

Follow me on Twitter

Follow me on Snapchat as Toitimeblog

Have a great one and remember to be kind!

 

 

3 Years of Blogging-The Background Tea

Happy Anniversary! I love this time of the year.  It’s like a birthday and Christmas wrapped into one.  On a blogiversary I usually rethink what I want to do.  I get a vision together and I work with it.  I also think about what has taken place in the year during this blog  year.

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This has been an awesome year. Not just because today is such a high day either.  It is a good year because I took steps to make it great.  Nothing just happens. I had to put the work into my life in a lot of areas so I can attempt to live my best life daily.  With that in mind, I am super grateful for just life itself.  Now let me also say life hasn’t been a bowl of cherries.  So today I will spill the background tea.  A blog about yourself is super sticky.  You will get strangers who can resonate with your story.  You also get folks who know you, don’t like you and will stir the pot.  You will also get people who know of you, don’t know your full story and will contact you and say I had no idea you were dealing with whatever topic.  I put me out there because I can do it best and that comes with the good, the bad, and the ugly. Or the one thing I get is how do I know if I am putting too much of myself out. I know because I feel like I have to be 100% okay with what I put out and who that will affect. For the most part I only worry about my husband and kids.  This is why I limit what pictures I show of my kids.  I ask them for their permission too.  Respect towards them is important. My husband is my number one fan so his support is incredibly important to me.

What about backlash?

I do not change my blogs to prevent backlash.  This is because these are my stories, my experiences and most importantly my page.  I think it is clear that the human spirit will draw to those it needs to.  I don’t worry about backlash in the form of someone who I don’t or barely deal with having a “word” for me.  This is not a cocky attitude it’s just real. I have had family members say to me, you say this and that on your blog but then you are a different with me.  The reality with writing is you can focus your words to be nice or not-its called editing.   When I am talking I don’t have time to edit.  However whether or not I am qualified to speak on me and tell the good, bad and the ugly is not even up for discussion.  I like most people have a past. If I don’t vibe well with another person will not determine if I should shut down an entire blog.  I am not everyone’s cup of tea and I love my flavor so I will not water it down.  This is why self-care and self-love works.  I practice this daily so that while I give out I can keep my cup always full.

I am wrong, Admit it, Keep it Pushing

I can admit in my blogs when I am wrong. I do not attempt to paint a cookie cutter picture of my life. My life has ups and downs, fault, and failure like everyone reading this blog has.  I do NOT know of a person who doesn’t.  I talk about me because I can.  Do you know how many people in the last 3 years have reached out to me to say thank you. When I wrote about postpartum, do you think I am the only one who has gone through it? Absolutely not. I told on how I even got so bad I threatened to call the police on my fiance (now husband) because I was so far gone and couldn’t manage my emotions. I talked about the moments in motherhood where I feel like I am missing the mark and the frustration of managing my 3 kids with 3 different personalities and trying to figure out that balance.  I have talked about the times I personally wanted to give up on my marriage. I have talked about what its like as a woman in her skin to have those moments where you wake up and see your weight, your face, a mole, or whatever makes you feel less sexy, less confident and how to come out because I went through it and came out on the other side. I can’t tell you about things I haven’t experienced. That’s not real. I know me. I know what’s like to be deemed the perfect child but fail miserably in life.  It sucks. It hurts, but if I wait for approval from everyone I would still be failing.  Oh ps. to other bloggers, you know that folks gonna talk, I say talk on, because at the end of the day I give no front seats to my life to just anyone especially when it’s not earned.

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Dust yourself Girl and Keep Writing

So for me these blogs are the essence of who I am. I make the mark, get knocked down, fall back a few spaces, dust myself off but in the end sink or swim, I’ll make it.  Everyone loves the underdog and I feel like the ones who wished that I would just plain old stop are up for one miserable ride.  I am Lord’s willing gonna stick this out and see what the end is going to be.  For those who I will make amends with because there have been some issues that have come out that I will conquer I will get there.  The others, no love lost, I have love but it’s from afar and I make zero apologies for it.

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Distance is key

I have noticed the incredible amount of peace that has happened in my life. I try to keep my circles small. Even with distance I find that if something is stirring I don’t even answer it.  My family meaning my husband and kids schedules keep me on my toes.  I love it. I am venturing out, attending more conferences, so my life is going in a different directions these days.  It’s been a long time coming.  Like any woman I can be petty, but my life has evolved to the point where I keep it quiet, move in silence, and focus on the people who really matter.  I say this because if you stir some old mess, it usually stinks. I have had readers over the years say they keep putting themselves in situations and wonder why they aren’t getting different results. If you learn nothing more today, change how you move and who you are around. That in itself will change your life.  We have a zero drama policy in our home. We don’t even have conversations about much that includes drama especially around our kids. We won’t allow drama folks in there. Not one person who has visited us has been one to stir a pot and if they do, we have no issues with asking you to leave.  My husband and I started this a few years ago. I wrote about how I got into it with a person and it forever changed me for the better. I will not allow myself to get to the point where I am so mad, I need to curse folk out, go off, or check for gas in my car for a pull up.  Yes followers, I am human.  I post about change but there was a time when all of that negativity was in me.  I choose change. Distance allowed me time to cool off, work on me and make a decision if people need to be involved with me or not.  Some I am slowly working to get into the swing with some and others I haven’t written off I just chose to continue in quiet and distance.

Great Followers

I have had some amazing followers let me say.  You have been rocking out when I lose my blogging way which happens. I love what I do, but life throws a few curb balls.  Last year I had to refuel but I was never gonna give up. I had to find my own passion and it happens and writers block is real. I try not to pull too much from headlines unless I feel extremely passionate so this is why people ask me to recap a show and if I am not feeling it I just won’t.  I have been eliminating a lot of reality television by choice so if you see me recap a show its going to be because I really felt the topic was something I truly have knowledge of, it was something I had been through, etc

To my new followers, go through and spend some time on the page. There is a lot for all kinds of topics. There is something for everyone male and female.

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Ask Toi

I love my Ask Toi questions. I answer these at toitimeblog@gmail.com and when I do I keep my follower’s identity closed. There is no reveals around here.  People have messy and crazy lives and revealing who they are would be completely wrong. So if you have a question, send them to the ToiTime email and I will try my best to answer them.  I always give a more detailed answer to my follower and a condensed version to my followers.  The reason is that some details would reveal and I am all for keeping Ask Toi as discreet as possible.

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So I will continue in my blogging endeavors. I will continue to be transparent. I will continue to be who I am and make no apologies for who I am.  I will continue to push the envelope because I do that off-line as much as I do it online.  I try to match my social media life to of my real life. Too many fakes, but there is only one ToiTime.  I am unique, I am Latoi.  I love all of my ToiTime followers, so cheers to another year!  Never be afraid to take a chance on yourself.  NO ONE ELSE will, you can and should be able to depend on yourself.

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Weekend Recap: Monday October 30

I usually give a weekly recap but I was off from my daytime job on Friday and spent some time getting some things in order as well as attended some activities with my kids. So let’s recap:

Personal Goals:

So I am happy to report that after having my surgery I got a clean bill of health. I also found out that my blood has restored itself, is healthy and I am no longer anemic.  Let me insert a praise break for that news right there.

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I have STRUGGLED with anemia since I started getting a cycle.  I have had so many complications and I never would have dreamed of this day. But it is here and I am over the moon excited.  It’s a great feeling to have your health on point and it only took almost my whole life to get it there.  I am grateful for that!

As many as you know I went to the Together Live 2017 conference and had a time. You can catch up on that blog as it’s already posted. We celebrated my mother in law and it was just somber.  All of the emotions of the year before were so fresh. I personally remember the events and hold my kids close to me.  We do NOT know our time and I would hate to not think I was giving them all I could everyday.  I am super honored and humbled by my husband’s strength.  I also had a great weekend with my husband. We were able to get out and enjoy some time together adulting. As promised I am sharing this year’s costume so you can see the difference in what a year looks like.  We are still not finished yet. We are taking active roles in eating right, working out, and being intentional in our goals.  So yes it takes work.  I was over 250 in the second pic to my now of almost to my 150 goal. Thats a lot of weight to come off but I did it the right way, no short cuts.

This year’s costume:

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Compared to last year’s costume:

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Huge difference in weight for both of us and our overall health.  We are out here trying to live our best lives.

Blog Goals:

So in case you missed you blogged about: Sunday’s message-don’t duplicate someone else’s shine, Monday push through, wait your turn, the cold weather depression, 30 years in the making, an Ask Toi about apologizing to a co-worker, Together Live 2017, Never Forgotten, and lastly Sunday Message-Complaints do nothing.  A lot huh?  Absolutely.  We are out here blogging that’s for sure. There is always something for everyone. So to catch up, click the link; ToiTime Blogs

What’s Coming Up for ToiTime?

I will be attending this weekend the Starry Night which is an organization that helps in raising money for kids with brain cancers. I would hope that no child would ever have to go through cancer of any for let alone brain cancer.  So if you would like to donate to the walk, you can; Starry Night 2017

I will be adding other conferences and events as we get closer.

The biggest thing that is coming up is my blogiversary.  Yes 3 years this November.  I will be posting contests so please stay tuned to my ToiTime Facebook page.  All announcements on prizes and games will be on the Facebook page alone!  Only announcements of winners may be on the blog.

I hope you have a great week! Happy Halloween to all who celebrate it.  Please be safe! Google places to actually scan your kids candy.  They exist.  Please wear reflective gear when you travel and try to travel in groups.  Check your kids’ candy!

 

Friday Recap: September 15, 2017

It’s been so long since I have done an update.  This has been a very interesting week to say the least.  To say TGIF is an understatement.  So what’s been going on with ToiTime online and behind the scenes?

Personal Achievements

  1. My son turned six.  Shout out to him.  He is such a wonderful young man.  I adore being his mom.  I really love his and his siblings life.  They have a good one.  Also along with him turning six, he has had a dynamic week at kindergarten.  He has been super student 3 times this week.  Way to go!  Oh and I can’t forget my niece who shares the same birthday. She turned 2.  This little gem is such an honor to be her aunt.  I love her bubbly spirit.  I pray they both have such a great year.
  2. We have survived our first week of school.  I’m going to drink to that.  The going to work late, running around, back to school shopping, house prepping was not in vain. Shout out to my husband who allows me to be extra mom of the year.  I go above and beyond to create experiences.  I really don’t even listen to the “why she doing that” talk.  My kids are amazing and deserve to be treated as such.  Kids don’t ask to come into the world.  They deserve to see and have a beautiful life.  So that is that I wear my extra mom hat proud.
  3. Who lost a few more pounds?  Yes me.  I am still soaring we have reached 50 and counting.  I know your thinking, what in the world did I weigh a thousand?  Say what you will but the way I feel in my own skin and how I look in my clothes is more of a reason to keep on keeping on.
  4. My family is doing amazing.  Two members had medical scares but God brought them out.  I can’t reveal the one yet but just know I am smiling from ear to ear.
  5. My youngest is moving on to a new school next week.  I am happy about it.  Its bitter-sweet as her teachers was awesome but when its time to move on its time.  I have gotten to the place where I won’t stay longer than necessary, I learned that with my son.
  6. Didn’t give into a message that was sent from a past relationship.  Pump your breaks it wasn’t an old flame.  The message was sent to me and my husband.  OH I wanted to, but what would be the point?  Raggedy folks are going to be them no matter what.  I can forgive from over here and leave folks over there to their own guilt.
  7. Who spoke to one of their favorite artist?  Yes me.  I had a great conversation with none other than Lil Mo.  Now anyone who knows me knows I have every one of her albums.  We talked about new music, and new shows etc up the pike.  I will keep you posted.  She is extremely humble, real, and not like everyone has her painted. AND she doesn’t shy away from speaking authentically even if its controversial.  I actually ran into her at my local Target store a few months ago and the conversation was quick.  This was more of an intimate conversation.  I definitely plan on speaking more on that later.  Shout out to my girlfriend who always is my connect.  She made my entire night.  Don’t worry I didn’t embarrass myself on the phone by screaming and being extra.  I did that afterwards.

 

Blog Achievements

Have you been caught up?  We been pushing material.  Thank you for all of your support in reading, speaking up, asking questions, and just being all around awesome follower. Remember you can find me on all social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter as Toitimeblog.  I would suggest you get on the site ToiTime and catch yourself up.  We had guest blogger, S. L. Efua Joe who is our resident Health is Wealth advisor.  So you know we hit on what you are putting in your body.  Cold and Flu season is coming up too so don’t think we don’t have your tips on how to survive that coming up. In the mean time take a look at the blogs and make some sound decisions.  Our what’s coming up is set so check that out. September is such a busy month.  There are so many things happening to keep you moving.  Don’t forget to get out, get active, and enjoy Fall, it’s coming.

What’s Coming up?

  1. I have a Lymphoma walk coming up on September 29, 2017.  I think this is my 5th or 6th year doing it. I never solisctate money on my site, however if you want to donate to my walk Light the Night
  2. I am doing a 5k with Black Girls Run this September 30, 2017.  No the dates are not a type thats two runs/walks in two days.  I’ll be in recovery from Saturday night until Sunday.  Pray my strength.  There are space available if you want to join Sweat with your Sole
  3. I can’t wait to go to my check up.  This is my yearly.  It is timely as its after all the surgery issues have died down and I can see where I am and what I need to do better in.
  4. It’s time to start now by getting ready for my blogiversary.  The blogiversary will be on November and we will be celebrating with a full month.  I will have a lot of surprises all month.  However my prep for that starts now.
  5. Girls Trip-how I had enough time to squeeze that in with all that is going on in all of areas of my life, I will never know but I did. I will blog that once its all fun and done.

So as you can see its getting to be some excited weeks and months coming.  I am determined to end the last quarter on a high note.  I have my visions and daily checking off the list as I get closer to the goals.  I hope you are doing the same.

Women’s Month: Who is KJM?

I have had the unique opportunity to come across some really unique blogs over the years. I find that I usually lean more towards the one that tell it like it is.  I am not saying I don’t like the flowery ones for a good read.  However, at the end of the day, I need to hear the black or white and less gray.  So when I came across this blogger it was for personal reasons.  I know the blogger personally but even in knowing her personally her blogs  holds literally no punches.

Blogging can be time-consuming to say the least.  The amount of time even when the inspiration just spills out can take a toll.  There is the actual typing of the blog as well as the editing.  Then just putting your voice out there can be intimidating too. So I wanted to know who is KJM?  What is KJM and what is in the works for KJM.  Kingston Jael Michaels is a blog that was started a little over a year ago.  It is a blog that deals with all kinds of topics but it deals mostly with KJM the author pretty much making fun of herself.  She allows herself to be the butt of her jokes in hopes of helping others.  She says what you want to say but are too afraid and too politically correct to say.  She is just plain old funny.  Find her at http://www.kingtonjaelmichaels.com for more hilariousness.

I asked KJM why she began her blog:

For the last 15 years, I have had people come up to me and ask me to co-write a book with them plus I have been editing other’s works for the last 20 years! Whether it was a school paper, thesis, or just something they were writing for someone special.  I was always humbled by their requests but never gave it a thought until my friend, Michelle Monique Johnson, passed away. She unexpectedly died a week after my 34th birthday and the last thing she said to me way…”it’s time to start your blog! Fly butterfly fly!” And  so my journey began September 2015…her birth month. I write in her honor and I pray I have made her proud!

I think that death can always bring new life.  In my own personal experiences I have seen where bad situations birth such greatness when you are open to itWhen you blog like I said before it allows you to expose yourself in ways that simply can either make or break you.  I remember when others found out I was blogging.  I got mostly good reviews but from family the most that I didn’t even see on a regular basis their critique was much more harsher.  Glad that I didn’t need or rely on the lack of weight their opinion shed.  I wanted to know what she has learned about herself in this process.

 I am naturally raw with my thoughts. And it’s not for shock value! It’s naturally who I am! Through my writing, I become this naked and vulnerable woman…something that is so hard for me to be in everyday life! I always have to be strong for others…and myself. When I’m blogging, I can rest the S on my chest and just be me…insecure at times…vulnerable…yet still strong. And I love that I have discovered that part of myself. Blog life has changed my life forever!
Where is KJM going in the next few years?  What is the vision?
 I pray it grows into a huge EMPIRE and that KINGSTON JAEL MICHAELS becomes a household name…from my books to my television show! Lol. Hey if you don’t aim high and believe in your talents…who will?! So I know first hand the stock I am made of. God-given talent runs through my veins. That talent allows me to transform myself…everyday.
When you blog do you know there are many times where I have written or have deleted a blog by worrying about what my audience thought?  I wanted to know if I was the only blogger who went through this?
When I first launched, I would write and then delete. Hoping to make everything perfect. Truth be told…writing is at its best when it describes imperfect human moments. I was afraid of being judged for my decisions and my views. But then I soon learned that not every day is a great blogging day but that does not mean I should erase the imperfect for it makes me who I am…and I am so in love with who I am and who I am becoming. I am a mess at times but who isn’t? You will get many things from my blog (www.kingstonjaelmichaels.com) but perfection is not one of them!
As a blogger who unites and makes great relationships with other bloggers, who was some of your inspiration?
I follow many bloggers including ToiTime but to be honest my inspiration are writers, producers, and creators of earth shattering controversial books, shows, and movies. Oprah and Shonda Rhimes are two of my greatest inspirations. Black women who build as they create. I am in awe of them! 🙌🏽
What is your message for women.  We all have something that we can take from one another even if we are in different stages than others around us.
Do not be afraid of your God-given talents and never dim your lights for anyone. Shine! Support one another and just be. Lay in all your imperfections and do not erase those moments where you are vulnerable. There is strength in vulnerability. Lastly, love yourselves first…even as you find romantic love. Never leave yourselves behind because…if you cannot count on yourselves….who can you really count on? You are everything! You are beautiful! You are the QUEENS of this earth! Walk in that destiny proudly and never apologize for it! Never apologize for being you.  One Love, KJM
Blogging is beautiful.  However do NOT expect it to go so perfect.  It takes a lot behind the scenes to make things happen.  Never judge another blogger because you as an outsider don’t understand why something is being said in a certain way.  Trust me the writing process is not only a beautiful thing but its therapeutic at the same time.  The way its sad sometimes is necessary to free others as well as the author. KJM keep doing your thing.  I look forward to hearing and reading more from you.
Follow the blog at http://www.kingstonjaelmichaels.com or on twitter @kingston_jael

Happy Anniversary ToiTime

Today is the day.  I am so excited.  It’s like a birthday and an anniversary all wrapped in one. So today I want to do some self reflecting.  One, I can’t believe its been 2 years already. It seems like yesterday I was sitting at my laptop debating how to start this blog.  I knew I wanted to be dedicated and bam, I said let me go ahead and do it.  I did.  I was scared.  Like why would anyone care what I have to say.  Like on the real I struggle everyday to be on point. I don’t put too much pressure on myself to the point where I can’t focus, but I do want to be better than my day before.

With that being said, I want the blog to excel.  How do I measure it? Sometimes by the emails I receive from readers when they say they were struggling with a topic that I covered and feel more equipped to handle it.  Sometimes by likes, comments, and shares, its sometimes all about the numbers.  I am grateful that my site allows me to see how many people read a certain blog and what country the reader is in when they are reading it.

Now to the fun stuff.  I have learned a lot about blogging in my second year that I wasn’t aware in my first year.  For instance, timing.  Often times I would just post and never pay attention to the time of day.  But it matters.  Readers are all around the world, but there is generally certain days and times that I find that engage readers the most.  I would just post as soon as I was done typing and editing.  I love that I am figuring these things out because in the line of content, getting it out when it matters most is super important.  The other lesson in blogging is having a tough skin.  For my first year I got so many people telling me how much they enjoyed it that when I got my first bad review it took me back a little. I had several readers regardless if it was real or internet trolls tell me how much they hated it. My thoughts were hate it or love it at least it was read.  My sentiments are still the same. In real life I am not everyone’s cup of tea.  So on the internet the same is true.  I had to approach blogging in the same way that I approach real life, let it roll off.  I am not saying I am above feelings because I am not.  I am quite the opposite. I am passionate about what I say and do however I rarely allow people to get to me.  I do things like journal, work out, have sex with my husband, or play with my kids before I allow folks who most likely are unhappy with themselves get to me.  I know that’s blunt but that’s the realness of it.  I used to worry about what others thought until I thought about how at the end of the day most are working their own lives and one opinion don’t stop the show.

The most important lesson that I took from year one to year two is never force a blog. When I blog it is usually something I can’t stop typing.  The words flow because it’s coming from a real place.  So that is why outside of life events I may have gaps in my blogs for  a few days because I would rather it be real and authentic than to be forced just to make sure there is a daily blog out there. Blogs for me have been literally a happy thing for me to do.  It’s not a grudge when you love what you do.

Also I try not to talk politics or religion.  I have my opinions actually very strong opinions on both  but at times I try not to go there.  I am not ashamed of my beliefs.  However I know that people get really irritated by these types of conversations.  I do draw on both at times so if you are a reader you can tell.  I am a preacher’s kid.  That is the largest lifestyle that I know.  Often times I make fun of myself because I feel like I have lived in a bubble for most of my life at least until I was an adult.  So I will allude to it. I have gotten people emailing me talking about why would I talk about it like that?  I say what anyone under that lifestyle wants to say.  I hold nothing back.  I respect all but this is my life.  I can’t and won’t doctor it up to fit another mold.

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A few things I did for today’s celebration was bought some business cards.  You would think that in the 2 years ToiTime has been up and running I would have had all of that together however I didn’t.  So I got me so much organizational things for the blog as well. I am a visual person so anything that is bright, colorful and about organization which I excel in is super helpful.  I can’t wait to share the items as they come in.  My goal was to make my blog right before 2017 so when the ball drops I want to be fully operational and ready to rock out with all of you.  What are some of the things you want to do but are waiting for something to line up to do?  Squash that mindset and make things line up as much as you can.  I was always taught that you do what you can and everything else will line up in place.  Let me say that as a person who has stepped out on faith a million and one times it works.  It’s not a magic trick.  You can set yourself up just from doing the right things.  So step out.

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Blogging is fun for me.  So when others ask me how do I blog so often, work full-time, be a wife, and mother to 3 beautiful children, I let them know simply this is my happiness spot. No matter how crazy the topic we discuss this is my happy spot.  We all need a happy spot. Something that defines us as a person.  Something that makes us smile.  And ToiTime is it for me. I hope you enjoy ToiTime because in 2017 the website is going to be changing as well as my domain.  I want to be able to offer more and to do more means I have to make room for more blessings.  So in this last month I am moving things around and getting ready. I am not waiting for 2017 to come in to make life pop and neither should you.  Put what you need in place now to be successful.  Thank you for year 2!! We rocking into year 3!!

If you haven’t done so, don’t just read the blogs, share them.  Follow me on all of my social media as toitimeblog.  Yes we are very active on social media so don’t be a stranger.

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