Women History Month: Kim Hicks

Failure is going to happen at different parts of your life. Sometimes we prolong the lesson because we remain stuck in a place we had all the signs pointing at us telling us to leave. We have to be able and be willing to get out-of-the-way so we can get to the place we are called to be. Its hard. Sometimes you can move quickly and not have an ounce of emotion attached. Sometimes due to emotions and feelings we have to be forced to move. This is painful but every successful woman knows that after pain can come the best rewards. Kim Hicks is familiar with what it means to hold on too long. She shares her story as well as what she is building for her future.

What is one failure you are comfortable sharing that taught you the most lessons?

I can’t say there was any one failure. What I have learned is that all of my “mistakes” or decisions have shaped every twist and turn that I have made. Although at that moment experiencing each one of those, it seemed, ill-advised decisions, whether it was giving up on myself too quickly or staying somewhere I had outgrown, I know that each of those things gave me wisdom and knowledge that I would use to move where I was predestined and pre-ordained to be. So I would say my greatest failure was not allowing myself to be that person with those faults and flaws making those “mistakes“in that moment. My greatest failure was not loving myself in that moment making those very decisions that had adverse effects on my life at those specific times. As humans we need to love ourselves and so seldom what we give ourselves is anything and everything but that.

From that or any failure, what other lesson not mentioned in the question above have you learned?

I’ve learned that we spend so much time assuming that we are behind, that we all think we should be farther along, or that we should be somewhere, but we don’t acknowledge that we are farther along, we are all somewhere. I have learned that there is love and patience for me and for others if I acknowledge my humanity. If we just acknowledge our own humanity and how precious and unique it is we could have patience for, not only the journey that we take, but the journey that others experience at their own space and place in time

What are is the 3 things you would want to tell other younger women in regard to lessons learned?

Be patient with yourself, pace yourself, and make a plan. I would tell them understand that a plan created and not adhered to, because life happens is not a failure on your behalf, but instead a success. We have been taught to think that life changes with new years resolutions and weight loss challenges, and simple adages, but it’s so much more than that. Life is not experienced on a level of resolutions that we try to stick to, it is experienced by how many times we start-up again and conquer that feat. We’ve been conditioned, not just as women, but as people to think that one year will come and there will be no rain, there will be nothing, but sunshine instead of taught to experience gardening in the inclement weather, instead of being taught to plant seed so when hard times hit that rainy day, month or time we produce for a lifetime. So, I would say welcome the journey, plant seed for the rainy days, and keep good field hands among you, those who aren’t afraid to get dirty in the yard with you.

What are 3 goals for your future?

One of our goals includes the expansion of our company’s non-profit RUN Movement into different states, it is a project that is built on creating tools and institutions that help people in under-served communities build economic, educational, political, financial, entrepreneurial, spiritual, and mental/physical health tools to revitalize their communities and live best lives in the present. Our next goal is to scale our business so that in time we can employ hundreds of others, and lastly help others make their dreams come true by creating youth and young adult entrepreneurship affiliation opportunities.

If you could sit down with any woman past or present who would it be and why?

Maya Angelou. She was a wealth of wisdom. The type of wisdom she had you can’t read in a book or experience in any other way than meeting with her and being in her presence. She experienced life in so many different realms and was in so may different places I could only imagine. Her ability to tell a story with words could only be outdone by hearing those words flow from her lips.

clothing

If you have any projects that are coming up in the future what are they?

We have several clothing and t-shirt lines debuting new designs BRANDED77 our Christian Hip-Hop line, AWOL (All Walks of Life) our inclusive brand, Madison Ave. our collaboration with one of our non-profit (RUN Movement) projects with our youth created clothing line, and Chocolate Wisdom our youth apparel line. Currently our company is working on an affiliate program helping up and coming entrepreneurs create a presence on the web by assisting them with webpage creation and a social media presence. We want to help young people, and people of color make their mark by investing in the success of an economic revolution in our communities. We are also currently working on a multi-cultural animation project called the ObserverX where we are celebrating our differences as a community and country with humor, education, and debate. This project will be huge and will be worth waiting for. We will start some of the character introductions very soon.

CORNERSTORE_FINALnew

Kim has several budding businesses.  Check them out:

Corner Store Nation Group,

Corner Store Nation Page

The Corner Store NYC Page

R.U.N. Movement. DIG Magazine

Digpimagazine

What is the one thing as a woman that you feel helps or helped you make your mark in this world?

Honestly, I am unsure what it is that as a woman I think helped me make a mark. I will say that my individual experiences have helped me though and because I am a woman who is a part of who and what I am and will forever be so that cannot be separated from the mark I plan to leave in this world. Everything I am will have been a part of that legacy I plan to leave behind.

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Thank you Kim for sharing with us. I hope to work with you more in the future on any of your platforms. We learned a lot and boy oh boy do you have your hands full.  Be blessed in all of your endeavors!

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Rim Cafe: Make it Happen

I love when you leave a place or in someone’s presence and you have the biggest smile because of how someone has treated you. I experienced an experience that is Rim Cafe.

From the time I walked into Rim Cafe I was taken away. It’s an eclectic atmosphere filled with nostalgia. So from first glance you should already know you’re in for a treat.

We were greeted with smiles and I knew it was going to be a in a welcome atmosphere. Rene the owner has so much light and love that it’s hard to not smile. I’m talking about that show all of your teeth smile. He knows how to “make it happen!” That’s his signature phrase. He sat down with us and talked about making coffee and drinks and about life. I wasn’t sure expecting to get life jewels but I did!

He talked about not limiting our power. He discussed about being the best in what you do and how creativity can’t be copied. I have often spoken about when you’re open to the right things wisdom will fine it’s way to deliver what you need when you need it.

If you follow Rim Cafe you already know that Rene is going to spin you into a heavenly rich concoction of love. Literally he made us 3 dishes. The first was a St. Patrick White hot chocolate that was amazing.

The next was a baked cannoli with melted chocolate in the middle. My goodness I was just floored by the flavor.

Next came the blow torch and I knew I was in trouble. He made banana flambé with caramel sauce and topped with peanut butter. Somebody call and check on me. I had to pretty much drink water for the rest of the day!

Oh by the way the peanut butter is homemade with his own signature way of making it. I’m not a peanut butter fan but this makes any of your name brand peanut butter blush!

I almost forgot about the salted caramel espresso shot! Heaven in a glass!!

Don’t wait, run to Rim Cafe. It’s located 1172 S. 9th Street, Philadelphia PA! You will never see a cafe like this in your life. Thank you Rene for making me smile. The memories will last! Make it Happen!!

Also they have all kinds of treats to take home too!!

Easy Transition With Go Vegan Philly

So last week on my Instagram I put out a call for any Philadelphia Vegan restaurants. I am happy to report that several did and today’s highlight goes to Go Vegan Philly

So I was able to have a successful full vegan weekend this past weekend.  In addition to that I was able to experience an amazing, flavorful experience with Go Vegan Philly. First of all let me share with you some of my personal reasons or my whys. I am transitioning to Vegan, one I believe with the assistance of my doctors this is the best meal plan for my life. If you ask the others in my house its a NO go. However that is not deterring me from choosing a Vegan lifestyle. My other issue is that I want to be able to eat clean. You know if you have been following me that over the past Summer I began substituting Vegan dishes and substitutes into my everyday eating. One of my issues that I experienced as I begin transitioning is the fear of having to only eat vegetables alone, meaning just salads. I love salads but let’s be real it’s not enough and I was finding even with several options for Vegans it was semi processed and definitely not whole foods that I need and believe will be better overall. I’ll admit a lot of it had a lot to do with ignorance of what it means to be vegan.

I feel I have had every salad combination there is. As I get more and more into it I am finding some amazing foods that can even surprise a non vegan. This is where Go Vegan Philly comes in. I had Jerk Chicken (Jack fruit) over rice with sautéed kale and cabbage and plantains.  Let me tell you I have personally been to Jamaica and had it from the natives and this dish is super bomb and close.  I kept telling myself to separate the platter. Have a little as a late lunch and then have the rest for dinner after a workout. NOPE! I ate the whole thing in a matter of minutes. Here’s my take. I no longer have to compromise flavor for a Vegan lifestyle.

I took the time to interview the owner of Go Vegan Philly and here’s what I learned:

Shaun Thomas has been Vegan for 4 years. He has had his home based restaurant for over a year and its taking off. I can definitely see why. His family is also vegan as well. He makes it all from mac and cheese to fried chicken and its ALL 100% Vegan.  From first to last bite I am super hooked.

Him and his cousin Charmain Quarles are the chefs. I watched them in action as they prepared these dishes. They serve each meal with love and smiles. They worked extremely well and I just blended in the background to see how their chemistry meshed and it was amazing. I love food and I love to eat. I don’t want to just eat salads and then feel like I lost something by switching. That is exactly what Shaun’s vision is. He wants people to feel like they are getting the foods that they grew up with that is flavorful but remains healthy and a great alternative to those who are transitioning. When he made the decision to go Vegan, he woke up and just did it and stuck to his commitment. That is truly admiral. I aspire to take that full-time leap.  So far I am doing well.

Jack fruit “Jerk” chicken, plantains, and sautéed cabbage and kale

The dish I had blew me AWAY.  From the reviews of even non Vegans, its spot on. The food was more than amazing.  I was full and not looking to snack on things or revert to a meat based meal later on that day.  If I am honest,  I ate around 4pm and didn’t feel the need to eat again until the next day at breakfast.  I asked Shaun what are his dishes and his response was simple, tell me your favorite meat based meal and I can make into a Vegan dish.  Take a look at some of their other dishes and you can be the judge:

 

If going Vegan looks like this and has my taste buds in full bliss, you can kiss meat based meals goodbye.  So as the journey begins send good vibes.  Also for those wanting to know, Go Vegan Philly does offer a meal plan service that I will be taking part in.  As I type this, I have already eaten the second platter.  Thank you Shaun, Charmain, and Go Vegan Philly you got a solid customer here!

Follow Go Vegan Philly on Facebook

Also follow them on Instagram

All orders can be placed by calling/text 610-616-3083

Hours are Tuesday-Friday; 5-9pm and Sat/Sun 1-6pm

Go Vegan Philly is located in Delaware County

As with any lifestyle change be sure to make the decision that best suits your end goal. Also be sure to research and have an open mind. Often times we are afraid to try new things because it challenges us to possibly end what we “always” known. Research! Research and then stick to your commitment!

Let’s flood Go Vegan Philly with orders and love! It’s well deserved!

 

 

 

Women’s History Month: Cheryl A.

Pain will have you react in very weird ways.  You find yourself isolating yourself or cutting off relationships.  It’s necessary to find the balance in who is for you and those who aren’t. Pain can distract you from fulfilling love that you need.

What is one failure you are comfortable sharing that taught you the most lessons?

I failed as a daughter. As most of you know my mother passed away in 2004 and as the saying goes, when the elders pass, the family falls apart.  Well, that’s what happened with me.  I’ll put my disclaimer in now and state that I am solely speaking for MYSELF and MY experience only.  I can not and will not speak for anyone else.  So back to my failure.  In dealing with my mother’s death, I failed at being a daughter to my father.  Yes I lost my mom, but my dad lost his wife.  As I look back, I realize I let my immature, unforgiveness and pain take over and to be honest, cut my dad out of my life.  For what reason, well, I really don’t have one.  So this is why I say I failed as a daughter.  I wasn’t who I was supposed to be to my father and let years go by without any communication.  I even got married without my father walking me down the aisle or even in the building! Now, that I have to live with.  No one is perfect and parenting doesn’t come with a guide.  So regardless of what failures my dad had, he was and will always be my father.  Now, I don’t have any horror stories and I WILL NOT cast my dad in a bad light because that would be a lie.  So like I said, I went on about my life after my mom passed as if my father didn’t exist, leaving him to grieve alone for years to come.  How sad and horrible is that? How do you call yourself a Christian when you aren’t doing right in other areas of your life? Then wondering why other things in your life aren’t lining up and there are no breakthroughs, elevation or real peace.  Yeah that was me and I can be honest and open and tell my truth.  So what is that status of my relationship with my dad now?  We are GREAT! It took a random encounter to bring me to my dad again and since then we were able to pick up like nothing ever happened.  My dad and I are both different people now and we both have forgiven and moved on.  It’s great to go back to being Daddy’s Little Girl (I”m the youngest girl)! Now only if I can get him to move to Miami with me! 

It’s refreshing to hear your vulnerability in how you describe your relationship with your dad.  You only get one set of parents and to be able to make amends now so you can make the best of an amazing relationship.

From the failure with your dad, what other lesson have you learned?

Don’t let your emotions control your decisions.  When you make decisions off your emotions, often times it is the wrong decisions and you are left dealing with the consequences that may take years to recover from.  Live in peace.  Meaning, do whatever you need to do to have complete peace in your life.  Whether it’s forgiveness, restore relationships or even end relationships, do what you need to do to have, protect and keep your peace.

What are is the 3 things you would want to tell other younger woman in regards to lessons learned?

  •  Cherish your parents (or whoever raised you), spend time with them, call them, create   memories

  •  Speak up.  Be honest about your feelings and thoughts.  Communication is key.

  •  Be Sensitive.  Parents go through things they would never discuss with their children.  Parents have feelings and emotions just like we do.

 

What are 3 goals for your future?

 Buy a house

Own my own Bakery

Own Rental Properties

If you could sit down with any woman past or present who would it be and why?

My mother of course! I always wondered what our relationship would be like now if she was still here! She was a woman full of wisdom and grace and I definitely could use some of both right now! Navigating life as an adult without your mother really sucks! There are times I want to pick up the phone and call for that good ole’ motherly advise, but then reality sets in…no more calls!

IF you have any projects  that are coming up in the future what are they?

I’m focused on building up my business, Miss.Sis.Bakery (Sis was my mother’s nickname).  I’ve been networking and trying to get my business out there through being a vendor at various events and local markets.  I’m located in North Miami, I’m a regular vendor at Gulf Stream Green Market on Sundays from 9-2 until May 26 and have various scheduled events on other dates.

What is the one thing as a woman, you feel helps or helped you make your mark in this world?

 I have always been a woman to stay true to myself.  I’m a woman of my word.  I’m not easily influenced or swayed to go along with the masses.  Too often, especially in this day and age, its hard to find people who you can truly trust and have your best interest at heart.   Therefore, I try to be what I am looking for or in need of.

Thank you so much for speaking authentically and I hope that this will help in your continued healing.

For all of those who may be experiencing the lost of a loved one, know that my heart is with you.  Know that you should remember that others surrounding the deceased processes death in different ways.  Try to be there for one another.  Don’t let pain and emotions run your life.

You can find Miss.Sis.Bakery on Facebook

You can also follow on Instagram

Women’s History Month: Zulma M.

How someone treats you matters. It sets the tone for respect or disrespect. Often times we get upset but there are times we need to look in the mirror. How we respond to the treatment says continue or stop. If we are honest not being direct is usually the culprit. We are still talking about failures and sometimes the failure to not allow others to dictate out lives needs checked.

What is one failure you are comfortable sharing that taught you the most lessons?

One of the many failures that I will have to say that has taught me and continues to teach me is allowing others to dictate or control me.

Again the concept that in order to appear respectful its best to keep quiet or not to rock the boat. That is a misread. You have to be able to speak up and mean what you say but you don’t have to be mean when you say it.

From that failure, what other lesson have you learned?

The lesson it taught me is that I have a voice and I am light and once I saw that and owned that no one could tell me otherwise.  I have allowed the opinions of others dictate how I was to live, to behave, dress and how I was to be all around.  I would have rather pleased them and allow myself to fall into a sunken place because I wanted to be accepted and loved, but deep-down resenting myself.

As I stated I learned to love myself, to accept myself and work on changing me for me not anyone else.  I have learned that I am different and that is okay that is actually great, I learned that my voice matters, maybe not to anyone else, but it matters to me.

Wanting approval is one thing. Wanting approval above our own voice is not okay. You can love you and make others around you align themselves accordingly.

What are is the 3 things you would want to tell other younger woman in regard to lessons learned?

Learn to love yourself…it will be challenging at first, but it is sooo freeing.

Do not allow the things programmed in your mind dictate who you are.  So often we are subjected to the thoughts and beliefs of our parents, teachers, friends and loved ones and it is a battle of who we truly are.  What I will tell you is research, allow your heart to lead you.  We have all the answers within us, but are you open enough to hear.

Pursue your dreams – there is no limit to what you can do.  Whatever you feel in your heart do it.

We can take on the things that we are taught and add or subtract from it what we need to be the adults that we need to be. It’s okay to go against the grain especially if it will yield a happy, confident and well-loved woman in its place.

What are 3 goals for your future?

To complete 2 certifications – Neuroscience certification and my Life Coaching Certification

Release weight – physically, emotionally and mentally

Travel – I want to travel the world and be an international motivational speaker

If you could sit down with any woman past or present who would it be and why?

I would have to say -Harriet Tubman – she was(is) a hero (Shero) – the fact that she was a slave she did not have no support, but she found a way to escape and not only free herself, but she came back and saved others too.   She was selfless and I would love to hear how she overcame the obstacles, the hardship what drove her to do the things she did etc.

Harriet Tubman definitely was one strong woman to do the very thing of helping slaves escape knowing she could be put to death.  We won’t step out and blog, be a creator, or go after that job and our lives aren’t even on the line. Don’t hesitate to step out in life and do things for others as well as yourself.  You got this!

 

IF you have any projects that are coming up in the future, what are they?

I am going to be hosting a workshop for women in late spring early summer. Planning to host a part 2 Vision Board Event as well.

Zulma is also on the Marketing Team for TCP I have not doubts that anything you start you will finsih

What is the one thing as a woman that you feel helps or helped you make your mark in this world?

Learning to be me and accepting me for who I am and the fact that I desire to exude Love to everyone, even those that do me wrong.  Staying positive as often as I can and remember to.   I have learned that what you put out into the Universe it will return to you.  So I choose to remain positive through adversity, give love at all times.

Thank you Zulma for participating and we wish you much success as you continue to live life on your terms and branch out!

You can find Zulma on Facebook or Instagram

Women History Month: Deja E.

This year we are talking about failure.  Why? We all experience it but rarely talk about it. Yet failure is the one catalyst that often brings success. It doesn’t mean that you HAVE to fail to succeed but in life if you think you won’t ever fail towards success you have a lot of life to reach it. I remember being in freshman year and failing a math test and how devastated. I was used to getting all A’s. I needed that fall from grace to help me not take college life for granted and get focused. I ended have to really work my butt off but I still graduated and that failure wasn’t on my record because I had to retake the class and get it right.  Now fast forward to stubbornness.  That in itself can be a lesson. Women have all had at least one or more failures in life. If you’re like me you have way more than you can ever count.  However if we are to carve a slice of life in this world and continue to make history in this world, failure is a by-product.

Failure to listen to your body will either make you sicker or take time off of your life. Deja learned how not taking head to the doctors and your body will put a pause in your life that you can avoid.

What is one failure you are comfortable sharing that taught you the most lessons?

Procrastinating on my temporal lobectomy. In 2006, I began having uncontrollable seizures and was diagnosed with epilepsy. After seeing numerous specialists, it was recommended that I have my temporal lobe removed. I was scared and prayed for other solutions. As my quality of life deteriorated, I began to realize that pushing the surgery off was worse than undergoing surgery. In 2014, I did it! And my seizures ended.

I can’t imagine fully what it was like going through seizures. I also can’t imagine being told to have such an intensive surgery either. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is the very thing that you need. If it hadn’t been for that surgery who knows what your quality of life would have been.  Yes procrastination is a failure because in that you fail to make a move it usually has a domino effect.

From that or any failure, what other lesson have you learned?

YOLO… you only live once
Dont risk losing time out of stubbornness

YOLO or you only live once means just like it sounds. Living requires stepping out of your comfort zone to carve the life you really want to live.  It doesn’t mean you can yell YOLO and life is perfect. Far from it.  However if you learn to apply that mentality you stop worrying about taking a chance on things especially yourself.

What are is the 3 things you would want to tell other younger woman in regards to lessons learned?

Trust your intuition… it doesn’t lie
Dont compare- this is your life, live it how u want to, not based on someone else’s
Take care of yourself- life can change in a blink of an eye, make sure you are on your A-Game

If you could sit down with any woman past or present who would it be and why?

Maya Angelou
Her wisdom and eloquence would have me mesmerized! She went through so many ups and downs in her lifetime, I would love to hear her story up close and personal. What an inspiration!

I would have to agree, Maya Angelou defied what life threw her way, made mistakes and then taught us all how to rise above anything. Deja you are a Maya Angelou in your own right!

IF you have any projects  that are coming up in the future what are they?

Everyday is a project
My 2019 ‘project’ is to lay a new brick everyday. Take that extra step, step outside comfort zones, and reach higher
That in itself is a project

She is being truly modest. Deja is a beast everyday eating better and working out being her best version.  She is definitely an inspiration.  When you get that second chance at life and I know all about that, take it. Live each day like you want that day to reflect your true essence.

What is the one thing as a woman that has helped or helps you make your mark in this world?

Strength!!! So often, women are perceived as weak or incompetent. Being able to prove the naysayers wrong is empowering

Thank you Deja. You are an inspiration. Don’t take your health for granted. Get your check ups.  Its important. Health is wealth.  Without being healthy you can’t do much else. Who would want to live like that? Certainly not me and you don’t want to either. I know sometimes we think that because we are afraid of what we will find that its better to not know. What you don’t know will kill you.  What you know and fail to take care of will kill you too. Take care of you. Women fail everyday but one thing is we don’t have the time to stay there. Get up, brush yourself up, and succeed.

Words Do Matter; You Matter More

So while at an event in my hometown I had someone say something to me about my weight. Now you all know I had documented my journey and that when I was over 200 pounds very little had comments about my weight and at that time I was way over where I needed to be. It was devastating. Now I am at weight goal and tightening up and I am still getting comments about my weight.  I was taken back if I am honest. I talked to my husband and he was like “keep it in perspective some folks aint seen you since you were a kid. You’re a grown ass woman with an amazing body and 3 kids, stay the course!”  Can we just clone him?  He made me feel like the beautiful woman who I am.

This is the conclusion I have come to. A lot of folks will only see you at what they last remember. I went to college a size 0 and came back a size 4 that was an issue. Had a baby and was a size 6 and now I am holding at a size 8 and sometimes 10 depending on how the pants are cut. Issue.

I am not here to worry about what other people’s eyes see me as. I am perfect at the size that I am. I am not in competition to be at high school weight. I was unhealthy to be honest. I ate what I wanted, rarely went to the doctors and the only saving grace was a high metabolism and sports. Skinny isn’t always healthy.  I know folks smaller than me with high blood pressure and a whole gambit of health complications.

What I know is from head to toe I am finally in the best shape of my life and I can run and do 6 or more races a year. I can keep and outrun my kids and run up and down a flight of steps without losing my breath. I eat as well as I can and work out 2-3 usually more a week. I am fine!  I am enough!

There is a woman who is struggling right now with a lot of whispers and you may not be as confident as I feel or feel like you’re not. You are just enough. You are enough even in the state that you are. Its one of the things I felt I needed to say. I need to release it. I had a family member say oh you sure are hippy meaning curvy. I am supposed to be. Newsflash, I have regular amazing sex and I have 3 kids. They didn’t know when I had the athletic build in high school I used to want to have a curve. Now I have them and they are here to stay. I looked like a boy body shape and folks would either like it or have an issue.  So to the curves and the butt that I now have, please stay. We are going to tone up these next couple of months but we ain’t dropping you!

Do not let anything stop you from being your best version of you.  Trust me you can change your body, but be the best version of yourself inner and outer and trust me you will always shine in darkness.

What if you aren’t at the place you need to be and someone does make a negative but true comment?  Remember when the lady asked me how far along I was and if I was having a boy? Devastating. I cried. I was hurt. I made up in my mind that I wouldn’t allow myself to get to that point.  To prevent that I only keep my size clothes in my drawers. I don’t wear baggy clothes. They actually let you look bigger FYI.  Wearing form figuring clothes helps hold you accountable. I didn’t say tight, I said form-fitting or figure flattering clothes. The other day I found a size 14 pant in my closet, tried it on and it was drowning on me. I gave them away.  I keep myself accountable by weighing myself weekly just like I did when I was going to Weight Watchers meeting. It’s important for me to stay the course. So when that comment was made through the help of my husband and getting on the scale to see what was going on, I was fine. I knew it was a comparison of what they remember me from my past. I am still at goal weight. I am in training season for these runs. I can’t let words distract me. If I do I might not be able to get through my vigorous races ahead.  I got to keep running forward.

One of my favorite songs by Kirk Franklin, Imagine Me:

Imagine Me