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As the end of the school year nears and demands from projects, events and activities peak, I find myself yearning for summer—at least for my kids' sake. Later wake-up times, fewer scheduled activities, and less stress from homework and tests. Read more...

A Few Thoughts on Grit

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 06:12
Why do some people succeed and some people fail? That's certainly a question many of us have pondered. What does it take to be at the top of our game? Do successful people have common traits? Some say yes. Some say no. Dr. Angela Lee Duckworth, associate professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania and a 2013 MacArthur Fellow, says highly successful people do share something: GRIT! Read more...

Messages and Meaning

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 00:00
We live in a world full of messaging. It is impossible to escape it—unless of course, you live as a hermit without electronics or human contact. Marketing and advertising professionals know what sells. In addition to the inundation of marketing messages, we receive untold messages from society and our ever-changing culture. The messages are often confusing and, more often than not, conflicting. The worst message we women continue to embrace is the one that insists that we cannot be successful (or loved, for that matter) unless we look "sexy" and "beautiful." Our talents, intelligence, gifts and character are secondary to… Read more...
"Trevor at school wants Hillary Clinton to win," announced Reed, my 11-year-old son. He shouted from the kitchen,"I told him she's a LIAR!" "And she has CANKLES!" his 8-year-old brother hollered from the other room. Read more...

Spring Break's Over. Now What?

Wednesday, 13 April 2016 06:40
We recently returned from our long-awaited spring break. Several months of planning and build-up went into this year's trip—which was all that I could hope for. We had great weather, we had quality family time, and we created memories that lasted a lifetime. Read more...

An Ode to Summer Camp

Wednesday, 13 April 2016 00:00
When I look back on my time at summer camp, I recall very specific experiences—learning to fold and care for the American flag; hitting my first full canter astride a horse; learning sign language; pouring lye down the outhouse privy; synchronized swimming in the pond; singing silly songs around a campfire; peaceful devotions under a pine tree canopy; and maybe even a few preteen crushes. Read more...

How to Avoid a Networking Disaster

Wednesday, 30 March 2016 00:00
Whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, networking is a necessary evil—unless, of course, you work in a cave and are required to stay in said cave and never leave. Most of us in the professional world need to attend lunches, evening soirees and breakfast events to grow our network and to build mutually beneficial relationships; this is also referred to as business development. It isn't that hard, right? You just show up, have a couple of drinks, make conversation, and BOOM!—a great relationship is born. Wouldn't it be great if it were really that easy? Read more...
What movies were you watching when you were young? Do you still watch them today? Does your significant other dare to give you a hard time about that? The West Michigan Woman team thought it might be fun to share some of our old movie favorites with you. We hope you enjoy this walk down memory lane. Be sure to tell us the name of your favorite "back in the day" flick!   GREASE I remember going to the State Theatre multiple times to see the movie Grease. I couldn't wait to get the two-pack record for my birthday. I… Read more...

How to Stay Motivated Throughout the Year

Wednesday, 16 March 2016 00:00
Beginning a new year can be tricky. Many of us start the year with such hope and determination. "This is going to be my BEST year ever!" Then a couple months in, life happens—and before we know it we're back to our old ways. But wait! Don't give up! Read more...
We've all heard the old adage: "Nothing makes a person more productive than the last minute." But should it really read, "Nothing makes a person more 'creative' than the last minute"? My husband sure thinks so, and apparently he is not alone. Here are five things I have learned about "pro" and "pre" crastinators: Read more...