Two Years

{Photo 133/365}  Dear Alcohol, I haven’t connected with you in two years now and it feels great!  I see you around my friends and others, but you don’t scare me anymore.  You were a nasty visitor in my life and I have no desire to embrace you ever again.  I hold tightly healthy ways to deal with my hurts and life issues and you are not one of them.  You taught me a good lesson; for that I am forever grateful and because of you, I am who I am today.  However, you are evil, controlling, and destructive to me – my life with out you is free. calm. real. honest.  I sometimes crave the way you made me feel initially but then I remember how I felt after you stayed a while and I never want to go down that road again.  My heart breaks for others who cannot shake you, who cling to you for their escape.  But know this, I will continue to speak against you – speak truth – and expose your cunning, baffling, powerful ways.  With Strength and Courage, Teri

{I just had to write this today and share with you what my 3 favorite escapes were – Red Wine. Mandrin Vodka. Ice Cold Beer.}

Last year I shared my story, you can read it here.

“I am only one, but I am one. I can’t do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do. And by the grace of God, I will.” – Edward Everett Hale

Covering All Bases

{Photo 132/365}  So many changes happening in my world.  So many irons in the fire.  So many decisions needing to be made.  Today I think I dealt with them all, seriously.  Brent was getting a glimpse into my world, watching me multi-task, that’s why he captured this picture.  I was having my “quiet time” when the phone rang – I’d been waiting for this returned phone call and had to take it.  My laptop was patiently waiting for me to write, dig into the book.  We made decisions.  Took action.  Enjoyed lunch and dinner with friends.  Watched the sunset.  The day turned into everything other than what I had planned it to be.  It was good, just not what I had expected.  I had to be ok with it.  I just had to be. acceptance.  ”There is no substitute for hard work, 23 or 24 hours a day. And there is no substitute for patience and acceptance.” ~ Cesar Chavez

Keep On Keeping On

I had the privilege to meet a very special person this past weekend.  A man with a passion who is on a mission to assist and raise awareness for those born with severe physical disabilities such as Cerebral Palsy and Muscular Dystrophy.

Tim Wambach founder and President of Keep On Keeping On said that his meeting Mike Berkson was not only serendipity, it was “serendestiny.”  Mike was a 12-year old kid living with Cerebral Palsy when he and Tim met.  Mike’s positive outlook, attitude on life, and his sense of humor inspired Tim to take action to make a positive difference in the lives of those in need.

The Keep On Keeping On Organization helps the special needs community in unique ways.  Tim and his team of volunteers believe that anything is possible and they live by a simple motto:  As long as you have a pulse, you must never give up, you must always…Keep On Keeping On!

To further the cause of the Keep On Keeping On Foundation Mike and Tim are taking their message on the road with Handicap This, a live stage show.  The message is about breaking down barriers and living with disabilities.  2 real characters, in 1 real life story…..that changes lives!  Their show will stir your senses, challenge your thinking and wake up your attitude. Check out their trailer…..

Find Handicap This! on Facebook by clicking here.

Tim Wambach IS Keeping it Personal – what an inspiration you are!!  He tells the story of his remarkable friendship with Mike Berkson and how the Keep On Keeping On Foundation formed in his book How We Roll.  You can find his book and learn more about this organization on their website here.

needitkeepit.org

There is NOTHING like giving. True giving……..NO strings attached. NO solicitations. NO donations. NO expectations in return. THAT is the heart, the mission, the spirit behind NeedItKeepIt.org (NIKI).

Doc Compton started this non-profit organization after he experienced the joy of giving.  One of his favorite quotes is, “For of those to whom much is given, much is required”, so with that his belief is to give, give, give, give – when we give, we receive! Doc shares the story that started it all, you can click here to watch it.

Here’s the concept:  CHANGING THE WORLD, ONE PERSON AT A TIME, AND $1 AT A TIME…

The idea is simple;  It all starts with an envelope containing one dollar and a letter about their mission.  That envelope is given to a stranger, who is instructed to follow these 4 simple steps:  Read the letter in its entirety.  If the money in the envelope comes to the reader at a time that it can have a measurable impact in their life, they are instructed to keep it.  In other words, “If you need it, keep it.”  Whether they keep it or not, the letter simply asks that the recipient let them know, via phone, email, or through their guestbook, exactly if and how it impacted them.  If they don’t need the money in the envelope, we ask that they simply pass the envelope along to someone else, ideally, adding a dollar (or more) to it, if they’re able, and compelled to do so.

The hope is that eventually, the envelope will find its way into the hands of someone who does need it, whilst having been added to by those along the way who might not have. The eventual recipient is blessed with the fruit of others’ generosity, and those who have passed it along and added to it have shared in the immense joy that giving brings.

Although the money could and most likely will be a blessing to someone who needs it, this project is NOT about the money.  It’s about the message and how it touches the hearts of all those involved.  Hearts will forever be changed, and faith in human kindness will be strengthened and restored.  The message that people care, people love, and people give will be spread by this simple act.    NIKI is 100% aware of the fact that this idea is not theirs… It is an ancient principle, but, as they are people of action, they simply wanted to help promote the idea of giving!

See NIKI in action, check out this short video……

To learn more about Need It Keep It go to their website at needitkeepit.org, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter or watch their videos on YouTube.

We are excited to join needitkeepit.org in their efforts by handing out envelopes in our community.  If you are inspired to do the same, you can get the letter we created here ~ Thank you NIKI for Keeping it Personal and for sharing your passion on giving and spreading love to others.

The Diaper Drive

Who would’ve thought that cleaning out a closet, de-cluttering the old and unused to make room for new, would uncover something that is desperately needed – DIAPERS.

That’s EXACTLY what happened when Kristen Grode came across a couple opened bags of unused diapers.  She said, “Initially, my motives were selfish – I just wanted to get rid of these things that were taking up space!”  Then she realized, after making several calls to shelters and food banks, that there was a desperate NEED.

That realization awakened something inside of Kristen to do some homework.  She was able to find several diaper banks across the united states, but there was NOTHING established in the midwest.  The closest organization to where she lived, in Minnesota, on a diaper drive mission to help families in need of diapers was Detroit.

After prayerful consideration, she took action!!  Just a few short months ago, Kristen started Minnesota’s FIRST and ONLY Diaper Bank!

The purpose of this non-profit organization is:  to help prevent health and neglect issues for children by giving low income families access to fresh, properly fitting diapers;  to partner with the community, collecting diapers and or funds, to purchase diapers;  to act as a vendor to public service agencies with diaper needs; and to advocate, through the use of technology and social media, that “basic human needs” include diapers and that these needs are not being met for many children and adults.

The Diaper Drive has EXPLODED since May!!  Having been featured on, KSTP Channel 5 – Twin Cities Live, KTIS FM Radio, WCCO Channel 4, and most recently, Minneapolis Star Tribune published a great article to create awareness – the word is getting out!

The unfortunate part about getting the word out is that most of the contacts Kristen is receiving are from people in NEED of diapers.  Since the article was published, in the Star Tribune, she has received over 25 calls from different organizations such as hospitals, ECFE programs, and food shelves from across the state in NEED of diapers.

Donations of ANY of the following items are needed:

Baby Diapers (any brand and size)

Pull Ups (any size)

Underjams

Swimmers

Wet Wipes

Adult Diapers (Small-Extra Large)

Belted Shields

Chucks

Men’s Guards

Poise Pads

The Diaper Drive only distributes diapers to partner organizations, NOT to individual families.  To see the current list of drop off sites, follow this link.   The goal is to create MANY convenient drop off locations across the metro area.  Please contact The Diaper Drive if you are able to get a collection started at your place of employment, church, school, or other gathering place of people!  To read more about how to make that happen, click here.  The need is HUGE, NOT only in Minnesota BUT across the country!

Last Thursday The Diaper Drive hosted a dinner for diapers silent auction and were blessed to have raised enough funds to now be able to submit their 501c3 paperwork at the end of the month.  With their non-profit status they are hoping to completely cover the state of Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin – they are on a mission!

To learn more about this GREAT organization visit them on Facebook or stop by their website.  Thank you Kristen for Keeping it Personal.  Thank you for opening the door when you heard the “knock” – you are truly a blessing and helping to distribute hope to the hopeless.

WHY KIP??? The TOP 4 Reasons

Keeping it Personal is simply a concept. You could say It’s similar to what people have been talking about for years when using the phrase “pay it forward” or the phrase “random acts of kindness”. These are wonderful and amazing things!

BUT, we want to encourage you to take it a step further with Keeping it Personal. In addition to doing nice things, good works, and acts of kindness for others, keep it personal by focusing on the relationship.  The connection.  The association.  The involvement with others.

WHY take it a step further?  Here are The Top 4 reasons……….

1.  It’s Broad.  There are MANY MANY ways we can keep it personal with others.  Each person has their own unique and special way to connect, bond, and communicate.  Determine what you are most comfortable with and DO IT!  LIVE IT!  Keeping the concept ‘top of mind’ is what’s important.  How are you sowing life into others?

2.  EVERYONE can do it.  Keeping it personal is NOT limited and anyone who is willing can do it.  We all have people who we can relate to and share our experiences with we simply need to look for the opportunities.  We are not limited to how many lives we can impact.  Whether you’re shy or outgoing, live in a small town or a big city, young or old – YOU can make a difference!

3.  It’s rewarding.  When we GIVE we RECEIVE.  What goes around, comes around.  We reap what we sow.  When we focus LESS on ourselves and MORE on the needs of others we receive blessings.  There is nothing more rewarding than encouraging another person, loving others, brightening another’s day.  It is purely food for our soul.

4.  It’s FREE.  You do NOT need to open your pocketbook, purchase anything, or hire people…….keeping it personal doesn’t cost a dime!!  Giving of your time, encouraging others, sharing, smiling, going out of your way to sincerely ask someone how you can help, giving compliments, showing appreciation for the little things others do, hugs, phone calls, letters……..all these are FREE!  Take action with the lingering thoughts that God gives you.  Reach out.  Make the connection.  Share your gifts.

There you have it!  Now, GO.  Take Action.  Live Keeping it Personal.  Be a blessing.  Be blessed.

Give it a name

Welcome back!  This is part two of the post where I introduced Towanda.  If you missed that, you can check it out by following this link.  If you had made the decision to read on, lets give it a name.

First, you need to be WILLING to acknowledge that you have some character defects or areas that need work in your life.  Remember, if you’re perfect you were supposed to stop reading – so the fact that you’re still reading this suggests that you’ve already accepted that you need some work and you’re willing.  YIPEE!

Second, go ahead, name it!  Be creative and have FUN with this!  A couple of my friends liked the sound of Towanda, but they changed the first letter to correspond with their first name.  If you’d like to do that, you could too!  Here are a couple of examples:  Lowanda, Kowanda, Awanda, Jowanda, Dowanda.  It doesn’t matter what you name it, JUST give it a name so you can CALL IT OUT!

Third and Last, now you’ve got the name.  Grab a piece of paper and a pen.  Write the name that you came up with for your character defects at the top of the piece of paper and then below the name jot down character traits you’d like to attach to that name.  If you’re experiencing writers block, feel free to look at Towanda’s list if it helps, she’s definitely got a lot of defects to choose from….UGH!

Now that you’ve identified your NEW unwanted friend, what do you do when she/he is triggered and all her/his character defects start to move through you.  Keep in mind that the character defects are often individual – they do NOT always come out at one time.  So be watchful, your ‘towanda’ may be sneaky and could creep in very quietly.

Before I share with you the steps to take to deal with your ‘towanda’ there are two things you need to do.

1.  You need to PREPARE. What this means is create an accountability group.  It doesn’t have to be huge – believe me, who wants to share this information with EVERYONE (except for me?!?!?).  However, you need to let a couple of people know what you’re doing, people who you can trust and who will be honest with you.  Know this, you need to be willing to receive truth from the people in this group, even when its painfully ULGY!  This is VERY important, so don’t overlook it.  Who will you share your unwanted friend character traits with?

2.  Keep watch DAILY-EYES WIDE OPEN. At first it might seem to be a lot of work and you might miss your ‘towanda’, but over time it becomes easier to identify.  Let me give you some examples of what you might be looking for:

  • You feel a storm raging within you, your blood starts to boil, or your stomach is in knots.
  • You get upset about a situation or with a person
  • Things just aren’t going your way, the way you planned or expected, you may feel frustrated and irritable
  • You’re having a bad day, you feel angry, you’re upset.
  • You have the urge to talk negative about another person with a friend or co-worker – you are gossiping
  • You’re feeling depressed and want to have a pity-party, be the victim
  • You are impatient with others and nobody seems to do anything right.
  • You are feeling disappointed.  Others/situations are not meeting your expectations – you feel let down

If you start to feel any of these things??  FLASHING LIGHT –  Lightening BOLTSDING DING DING – your ‘towanda’ has been triggered AND is awake!!  What do you do NOW?  Immediately!!  Let me suggest the following 4 steps that have worked for me………

1.  ACKNOWLEDGE that you’re feeling your ‘towanda’.  It’s OK!  We are NOT perfect, we are a work in progress, we are human and unfortunately your ‘towanda’ will stay alive as long as you do.  Your goal is to identify it and by acknowledging it, you’ve accomplished step one.

2.  CALL IT OUT.  I know this sounds silly, but actually say out loud what you’re feeling and speak against it.  Let me give you an example of a situation:

You wake up with anxiety in your stomach, your mind starts to race about everything that needs to get done.  You don’t know what the outcome will be in a certain situation so you are playing out every possible scenario in your mind, you are stressed out and worried that things may NOT work out how YOU think they should.

You acknowledge THIS is your ‘towanda’ – NOW you need to call it out, speak to it, say something out loud like this, “I am trying to manipulate and control this situation.  I have the ability to control myself and no one else, I will simply do my best, the outcome I have NO control over.”

What you’re doing in this step is calling out the character traits of your towanda and speaking truth against the situation.  To put it simple, identify the negative – then turn it around and hit it with positive!

3.  PRAY.  Go to God first.  Share with Him your struggle, your situation, your feelings.  Ask Him to reveal to you His will for your life and ask Him for the strength to operate according to what He wants for you.  Humbly share with Him the areas where you may be wrong in your attitude, motives, and actions.   Thank Him for His unconditional love and share with him the many things you’re grateful for.   Lastly, be patient……..wait on Him.  Continue to ask for His guidance and praise Him while you’re waiting.  REMEMBER:  He has PERFECT timing.

4.  Tap into your ACCOUNTABILITY.  IF you’ve worked the first 3 steps and are STILL feeling the ickiness of your towanda – call upon one of your accountability partners.  Share your struggle and ask for insight.  Be open to hearing something that you may have overlooked.  When we are in the midst of a struggle, when we are angry, upset, or hurting we can easily overlook the characteristics of our ‘towanda’ – outsiders looking in, who are honest, can help uncover things we are not capable of seeing on our own.

That’s it!  These steps ARE working for ME and I am grateful.  Don’t get me wrong, Towanda STILL comes out (my husband and kids will confirm this) and I STILL have issues, BUT now I face them HEAD ON by following these steps.

What I’ve realized, since I’ve been doing this for several months, is that I often don’t get to step 4.  I feel 100% better at step 3.  AND, IF these step are “out of order” my issues can be blown out of proportion, I can add fuel to the fire by telling others my ‘dreadful’ story and be deceived about the reality.  The REALITY??  I need to take an honest look in the mirror FIRST.

Doing Good Works

Have you ever wondered how you could make a difference in someone’s life? Have you ever had the desire to be a better person, to ‘pay it forward’? Has someone, perhaps a complete stranger, made a difference in your life with a simple act of kindness? We have decided to highlight a man who we have absolutely no connection with, but who has demonstrated first hand these qualities. We thought you would be inspired by him, as we were. Perhaps, you might decide too, to take his approach on doing good deeds. What a difference he has made, and wouldn’t it be a blessing for us to continue in this quest.

Bryan Douglas

On April 3, 2009 Bryan Douglas decided to make a difference. He placed an ad on Craigs List (of all places) asking if anyone needed help. Can you imagine? He had several responses, and after some planning, Bryan set out on a weekend trip to help others. It is as simple as that. He got in his car in Pittsburg, and headed for Chicago, with a list of “to do’s”. Actually, others’ to do’s for which he had volunteered his time. This list varied from the purchase of a battery, to providing a ride, to some sweat labor.

Take a couple of minutes to watch Bryan’s video, it is a rough documentary of his trip, well worth watching! What an incredible example of Keeping It Personal……random acts of kindness!

We challenge you to pay it forward. What can you do, something as simple as providing a ride, or helping with some lawn work…. to make a difference in another’s life? Will you share with us your stories? Maybe how your life was impacted by another’s kindness, or how you have paid it forward? We would like to make this a regular reminder for our fans- as I know I am inspired when I see how a simple action can make such a big difference!

To learn more about Bryan’s mission, to see and hear more about how he’s impacting lives, check out his websites:  PghPeopleHelpingPeople.com ~ GiveWithoutRemembering.com ~ twitter.com/Bryan_Douglas_ ~ DoingGoodWorks.org

You may also be interested in reading the book he has written titled, “Doing Good Works”.  Here he gives people practical ideas of how to think and act to change the world.

THANK YOU Bryan for taking action with those lingering thoughts; NOT ignoring them.  You are an inspiration.  You are truly keeping it personal.

A Special Blessing

Its been several weeks since this happened.  Every time I think about it, it brings a smile to my face.  I’ve been wanting to write about it, I JUST haven’t taken the time………today I FINALLY am.

Thursday, June 4th I was exhausted.  My back had been out for a couple of weeks, I was slowly on the mend, but things were not being accomplished because I just was NOT feeling up to it.  The boys were NOW out of school – so the transition from “my” time during the day had begun.  I needed to adjust to sharing the treasured hours during the day, where I could accomplish things with out distractions, with worrying about the boys being bored, having something fun to do, breaking up the “brotherly love” fighting, and taxi mom to play dates, day camps, and sports activities.  UFDAH – it was JUST the first day of summer!!

My todo list was VERY long – we were in the process of getting our home ready to put on the market.  It’s amazing to me how much work needs to be done to get the house ready for others to see it.  The punch list from the realtor was 3 pages long!  I had to call in the troops to assist me with my mini-extreme makeover home addition project.  I had THAT day ONLY before I was headed out of town to meet a friend who I hadn’t seen in 1 year, so I needed to make the best of it.

I woke up that morning, still NOT feeling well, and begun visualizing my day.  It didn’t look pretty.  Here were my racing thoughts:  My husband was out of town (hhhmmmm, how convenient?!?!?) so he wasn’t available to help.  Every closet and cupboard had to be de-cluttered and organized.  The movers were coming to rearrange and remove furniture to put into storage.  The handyman was coming to fix things, paint, drill, hang, etc.  Tina, the home “stager” was coming to suggest and give pointers on how to make the home SHINE for showings.  Kelly, my cleaning lady was coming to help with cleaning, wash windows, and sorting things into piles:  Keep.  Toss.  Good Will.  It was going to BE Grand Central Station.  Then I thought………I  sure do love my little nuggets dearly, but I knew that the day would be stressful with them being home.  I had forgotten about THEM being home, school was OUT!!  oops!

Then I got the phone call.  My friend Tricia called.  She asked if she could pick up the boys and take them for the afternoon.  WOW, REALLY?!?!  Apparently I had mentioned to her previously about this day and she knew the boys would be out of school.  So, she offered to take them for the day.  I felt a little guilty at first, you know, the “SUPER mom guilt” which causes you to respond to an offer like that this way, “Oh, NO, that’s ok, I can manage.” The LIE that just so easily flows out of our mouths – we say NO when we REALLY REALLY mean YES – HELP ME!!  SOS!!  Ok, so that’s what I did initially UNTIL she insisted and wouldn’t take NO for an answer.  She picked up the boys around 11:00am – took them to her home, fed them, played with them, let them run around and have a BLAST at her home on her land out in the country.  I was able to tackle my punch list with OUT any distractions.  She was a BLESSING to me that day, and I STILL appreciate it so very much!

What’s more is that in addition to the FREE gift she blessed me with by watching my boys, a couple of days later she emailed me these special gifts.

WOW!  PRICELESS pictures of my boys!  I hadn’t taken the time in years to have professional photos taken of the boys and she captured them so beautifully!

Thank you Tricia for blessing me that day and Thank you for keeping it personal,  for taking action with the lingering thought that passed through your mind to help me.  I appreciate you and our friendship.  I hope to sometime return the blessing to you!!  :-)

Ps.  If you’re looking for a GREAT photographer check out her work on her website by clicking here.

Live out LOUD

Summer Break is here but I haven’t had much of a ‘break’ in the area of sleeping in.  For the last week, for a variety of reasons, I’ve had to get up EARLY;  I could REALLY use a morning to wake up without the alarm clock!  YAWN!!

I was driving this morning, at 6:30, heading to my chiropractor appointment; drinking my coffee and listening to the radio.  I heard the phrase “Live out Loud” –  it set my mind racing!!  I formed a question in my mind, what does it mean to live out loud?  I started brainstorming what it means to ME and jotted down a few of my thoughts in my journal.

Living out loud means………..NOT being ashamed of what others think about where I’ve been and the experiences I’ve had.  Being willing to open up and connect with others about life’s struggles.  Sharing where my strength and hope comes from; God and a personal relationship with Christ.  Striving everyday to be a light in the world and to be helpful to others.  Transparency, NO masks and being honest.

THEN I started to wonder how others would answer this?  So, I sent out a “quick question” email from my blackberry to some friends, it said this, “Could you take 2 minutes and answer this question quick?  What would it mean to you to “live out loud” – can you share your thoughts on living out loud? Do you live out loud? How? Thank you so much for your input! Love, Teri”  I LOVE the uniqueness of the responses I got from my friends and family – THANK YOU for contributing,  I truly love and appreciate you ALL!!  Below are their answers, uncensored……

“Living out loud is extremely rewarding! When one of the kids win an award, I’m the mom Cheering out loud while everyone else claps quietly! When I have accomplished a goal, I’m out there encouraging others that they can do the same thing! As a single mother, I bought my first house, celebrated that in the middle of a company meeting! I made a goal to buy a BMW, it took 5and a half years, but as a single mom, I accomplished that! I lived out load by telling everyone who complimented my materialistic automobile that I had that goal for 5 and a half years, and I did it!!!!  I managed a team of 10 salespeople and encouraged them with praise and celebration when they succeeded, loudly! The way I look at the question: do you live out load, I think, YES! I don’t worry about what others think of me…. It’s none of my business! I get up each day to encourage and help mankind! I do it with energy! I do it with a smile! And I do it because I want to!!!!!  ~ KP

“Living out loud to me means to be able to share your life’s passions, goals and beliefs with those around you. I am passionate about kids and instilling in them a love for their families and teaching them about their faith. Living out loud means making connections with others that have the same passions as you and being able to learn and grow from each other.” ~ KMP

“Living out Loud….Waking up every morning and watching the sun rise….Listening to the birds…Seeing the beauty in the world God has put before our eyes…Watching the sunsets…Loving with all your heart and like you’re never going to get hurt…Being there with a gentle heart and caring hands for others…Enjoying every moment and making the most out of every opportunity…Listening with your heart…Loving like there’s no tomorrow…Looking for the positive in everything and everyone…ACCEPTANCE…That to me is Living Out Loud.”   ~ DN

“I immediately think of the song – “wake the neighbors, get the word out, crank up the music….and shout”. So, I first think of “living out loud” and the message of excitement of having a relationship with the Lord and wanting to shout from the rooftops and share the passion I have for God.  I live out “louder” in some areas of my life than others. With some friends/family I speak freely about the love and excitement I have for God. In other areas of life it is more indirect. I try to stand firm in my faith and let the light of God shine out. I think living out loud is living out the Word and what is in your heart and not keeping it inside to yourself. However you can “live out loud” – speaking and sharing the Word, kind actions, patience, tolerance and love.” JE

“Living “Out Loud”. I’ve never thought of it before, but I guess to me it would be living your life as if each day were the most important day. No matter what is on your schedule, you do it to the fullest. Loving life & making the most of it. As a Christian seeing each circumstance or trial as an opportunity to trust the Lord & grow in your faith & finally being ready to share Christ’s love with a testimony or helping hand, taking a stand when you may be the only one “standing” for the truth. Letting your actions, attitudes etc define who you are, with out having to be in your face preachy to someone.”  ~ SMF

“Living out loud is about sharing your love of living with others. Don’t let your happiness stay within you give it away to others! When you are loud with your living and loving it is catchy! Let others catch the fever…..live out loud today and every day!”  ~ KM

“To live out loud means to me living a life with example. To live life out loud is to be seen by others a way of life that your living.  Basically walking the walk and not just talking the talk. That’s how I see it.”  ~ RRS

“I think living out loud means to be bold in your faith…people knowing you’re there being the example Christ set for us.  Working at getting better at this, but don’t feel like I’m fully “living out loud”.”  ~ WL

“Living out loud to me…. what a great question. I guess to me it means sticking to what I believe no matter what! No matter who I am around! I make sure I am who I say I am at all times: I am a daughter to a almighty savior and I try and live every moment for his glory. I am a Christian and a GOD fearing one!!! I want everyone who knows me to know that! I don’t push things on people but I know that everyone who “knows” me, KNOWS this about me. THAT is how I live out loud!!! :) ”  ~ AK

“Live out loud… Letting my heart be apparent from inside out and my actions following my heart by my matching those actions. Something I am working on daily.”  ~DM

WHAT does “living out loud” mean to you?  How would YOU answer this question?