Category Archives: Spotlight

Katie Flynn

Smack dab in the middle…In the middle of 7 brothers & 3 sisters, in the middle of creating a beautiful & comfortable home, in the middle of a magnanimous ever-changing life, in the middle of ….what’s next.

Katie is doing it, making it happen, owning it, enjoying it, living it, being it, loving it, transforming it. Katie is the author of her amazing life with a million dollar view.

From her first class with Toni in 1989 at the Park Plaza with her firstborn in her arms, through all the Teacher Trainings, Workshops & Prosperity Courses into her most recent days of
Women’s Groups, …. Katie has embraced her 25 years of ‘the work’.

She’s married to Paul with 2 boys running around & one in the belly and they lived in a tiny half duplex with a tiny yard. They had a rough go at it, at first. They were Prosperity Teachers,
lead workshops, managed students, taught principles. They spoke about being more but were living small, they taught about risking yet were living it safe and they knew of abundance but
had no savings.

Katie knew this wasn’t IT.

They had a breakthrough conversation which was trajectory to their success, Paul went out to create a prosperous home on a prosperous piece of land for his family. He had no idea how he would do it, AND he said YES.

Paul found a piece of land for sale AND agreed to buy it. They had no money, no credit, no equity. He found someone to borrow money from AND promised to pay him back in a month. He subdivided the land to pay back his investor AND give him a lot of land. The best
part of this “Create Your Reality” breakthrough ….AND he built a house for his family.
Based on all the prosperity principles they’ve been teaching and using, they knew they could manifest what they wanted smack dab in the middle of not knowing how. They knew to move
forward with a vision and forthright wisdom that ‘Anything Is Possible’.

Katie knew “if they could manifest it once, they could do it again” All the Walls came down! She knew without a doubt….ANYTHING is POSSIBLE.

“I can have anything I want to create”, she repeated. Her life moved forward from there.

She has seen, created, manifested and unfolded beauty, friendships, deep conversations and true real moments that make up her daily life. The nature of the work she’s doing shows up as a miracle, there’s an ease and a prosperity in her life, but it’s because she’s doing the work.

It’s not magic, but in a way it is. It’s wonderful.

She had to step back from people who didn’t support her mindset, her thought patterns, her ‘abundant’ thinking, so that she could gain some perspective.

She now asks herself “Does this work for me?”, “Does this serve my life?” as she continues
to think outside the box and trust that ANYTHING is POSSIBLE as she makes choices for their success.

As a nurse, caring for others, comes easy. Maybe it’s from being the middle child where she learned to follow and learned to lead. Her passion for in-home health care with a strong
craving for hospice and home births is saddled up with her passion for reading.

Did someone say reading? Katie is obsessed with books. She loves to read autobiographies, real stories, true stuff. Historic fiction catches her heart as well as art, photography & painting.

“It’s funny,” she says. “I’m not even an artist….I’m the appreciator.”

Then there’s music, dance, play & fun. Oh AND the people in her life!

Her husband, her children, her friends. The people in her life matter most.

Oh but the reading.!! It fills her heart. The things she learns, spirit & mind, moving through adversity, becoming the best that she can be…. all of it…. found within the writings of so many great authors; Elizabeth Kubler-Ross, Toni Stone, Maya Angelou, Elizabeth Gilbert, Brene Brown, Su Monk Kidd and Mark Nepo.

She brought an inspirational book to work and sat it on the counter, where it’s creating conversation and a happy work environment.

“All work and no play makes for a very dull situation”, she says with a smile.

Katie’s smiles, hugs, visits and conversations are just a few ways she expresses her love.
Being WITH others makes a world of difference! She trusts LIFE no matter what it looks like. The good, the bad, the ugly.

LIFE is MESSY. It doesn’t frighten, deter, or scare her. Life evolves, evolution is always happening, things are always moving.

And for Katie, even when she’s in the mess in the middle, she reminds herself…

“Be Still & Know.”

 

Interviewed and Katie’s story was written by Tracy

Dollee Mallare

Dollee Mallare…’Busy Beautiful Bee’ 

Loving a lot, living a lot, sharing a lot, creating a lot.

When you grow up as a Filipino-American daughter to divorced parents in the 50’s, you are rare.  You learn that one thing is not like the other very quickly.  Dollee learned at a young age she was not like everyone else.  A multicultural background adds a little challenge to one’s life, but oh how rewarding life ends up being when you don’t let people’s judgments penetrate your being.  When you know with confidence who you are, who loves you and what you’re made of.  Life grows you up a very creative, happy-go-lucky woman.

She became a clown because that is when people listened to her.While in San Fran she realized she could use it as a vehicle to reach more people. She and her clown partner,Debbie O’Carroll performed their brand of Education Theater throughout New England and even performed in Amman Jordan.

Busy.  She was busy.  Aside from being all she could be in the middle of her young only-child life she learned lots of ways to survive and thrive.

The most challenging and rewarding part of her life wasn’t:

Attending 5 colleges, 

or performing at Pier 39 San Francisco, 

or being in Paris France, 

or being a clown in the Big Apple Circus Clown Care Unit  

Nope! It was being a parent herself-a single divorced mom, doing it herself.  She was determined, adaptable, loving all around. She taught her girls self-respect, common sense and honor.  She’s so very grateful she was able to support her girls as a clown. 

With a Masters in Elementary Education, she is glad she impressed upon her girls that education was never a question.  It was a must.  Now, all grown up and living on their own, with wonderful careers, with one daughter living in Boston and the other daughter living in Denver.   Dollee is an empty nester sitting in the joy and love that her & her daughters brought into each other’s lives and the joy she now shares with her life partner Glen.

Fun.  Art.  Music.  Busy Happy Life.

Her creativity didn’t stop as a clown.  She’s dabbled in jewelry- making, taught design, was a face painter & balloon artist and these days you’ll find her painting.  Abstract painting with acrylic and multi media.  Bringing in new ideas.  Creating.  Taking the thought from her mind onto the canvas.  Bringing her thoughts to life.  She’s always looking for different ways to make thoughts come to fruition. There’s no form to it.  It’s a movement.  Creating as she goes. 

She also has a few business ideas.  With time on her hands, she’s wanting to use her time for good. 

Her paintings, ideas, creativity… they are all a work in progress.  As is she.  

She has been working on herself for a long time. 

“What started it?”. I asked her. 

“I met Toni.”, she joyfully proclaimed. 

Toni, who is Noelle’s mom, helped make Dollee the woman she is today.  Toni’s teachings resonated, the times together were enjoyable and the conversations were great.  They talked about the meat of life, there were no appetizers or soup to chit-chat about.  It was deep, honest, truthful conversation. And because of that digging into the self, she is such a better person now, manifesting things in her life and knowing deep down that anything is possible.  

The goals, accountability, support, and the friendships she’s made over the years are irreplaceable.  One time she was sewing a quilt by hand because she didn’t have a sewing machine, and Noelle bought her one.  It was a miracle!  Her very own sewing machine!  What a blessing it was…to be given to in that way.  That kind of receiving opened her eyes and her heart to greater giving, greater living.   

This woman knows with confidence who she is, who loves her and what she’s made of.  She is beauty.  She is beautiful. She creates beauty.  She sees beauty in everything and everyone.  

Life is expressive, happy, wonderful & perfect.

 

 

*Interview and write-up was done by Tracy.

Morgan Talbot

When I sit and contemplate my conversation with Morgan, all I can think of is a shy happy lark.  Is there even such a thing in this world? 

Well there is now. 

For such a young woman, her vulnerability, honesty and maturity were very evident the whole time we talked.

This daughter of a single mom finds her way through being 21, going to school and working FT.  “Juggling the two is a struggle, but it’s something I’ve got to do”, she says with a smile in her voice. 

As a result of taking an Automotive Class in high school, she met her boss and has been working for him at his garage for 3 ½ years.  There are days she wishes the tasks weren’t so redundant and there are days when time passes by so fast she never notices the repetitive nature of it all.  How about I do an oil change or a brake job today, she asks her boss?  Her hunger to learn keeps her asking for more and her patience settles her in…. for now.

Her delight and appreciation for being the daughter of a single mom is evident as she speaks of her mom’s strength, perseverance and their mother-daughter friendship.  The freedom she has earned over the years by showing her mom that she can be trusted gives her a sense of empowerment, a courageous attitude to come and go and a joyful longing to return home…..alongside her mom, her beacon, her mentor.

Also alongside her for 12 years was her mini-pinscher.  Samson.  He protected her, comforted her and lived life next to her since she was 8 & he meant the world to her.  Now that he passed away, a tattoo of him reminds her of the love they shared. 

Her maturity, humble fire and responsible manner keep her going.

Three mottos she lives by:

“The energy you put into the world is the energy you get back” 

“Virtues and character are far more important than what others think of you.”

“Do your best every day…for yourself.”  

The empowerment she has to succeed and accomplish, is a driving force in her life and she knew she had to come to terms with what she wanted to do as she realized growing old in the automotive field wasn’t it.  She went back to school in the fall of 2018 for Mechanical Engineering.  Morgan keeps doing what she needs to do so she can have the life she wants and keeps her focus on where this new journey of learning will take her.

In between all the doings that she has to do, she makes time to hang out with her mom enjoying the moments together. The laughter, the jokes, the wonderful relationship… the conversations they have, the things they do, the uniqueness they share.  That happens when two people spend years together.  An unbreakable bond.  A daughter who happily proclaims….”My mom is my best friend.”

 

*Both Morgan’s interview and spotlight write-up was done by Tracy.

Janet Truszkowski-Burton

An empty self, metamorphosed into a woman on a mission to serve and overflowing with peace.  A woman who is humble, kind & continuing on her life-long journey of self-becoming.

Daughter.  Grand-daughter.  Sister.  Mother.  Friend.  Wife.  Mom.

This woman who became her little sisters’ “mother” at a young age because their mom had to work to provide for the family, has learned many lessons in her lifetime.

The most important is to not lose yourself in the midst of life.  As Janet says,

Maintain your own interests & identity.  Be a mom, yes, and be a great mom…BUT….be sure to feed your soul….every day.  You can’t pour from an empty cup.”

It was really tough when her grandmother passed because she was such an inspiration and an integral part of Janet’s life.  Grandmother had a hard life, but she never gave up and she always found joy in the little things.  Janet loves to cook because of her grandmother’s teachings & remembers often, there is always so much to smile about.

Looking back, she now sees “hitting rock bottom” was a catalyst to drive her to care so much for young moms.  It’s what feeds her desire to make a difference.  She remembers her own struggle and if there was somebody in her life to walk through the valley with her back then, it wouldn’t have been so hard, so lonely, so mentally debilitating. “Learning from the mistakes that I’ve made, if I can help younger moms and teach them, support them, guide them…. THAT would be a good day.” 

Janet looks forward to teaching them to be financial responsible as well, and motivating them to keep their identity outside of their job and their children.

You never know how something like this will impact you but after being a “mental mess” she decided it was time to do something.  Holding fast to: “God is GOOD All the Time, All the Time God is Good!!”

She pressed on.  It was hard!  But she built herself up!  Just like her grandmother.

She took a job which became a better job, which then became her career.  Now, she is touching lives every day.  Her boss calls her his partner, which is quite an honor.  She’s extremely important to him and he lets her know it.  When the phone rings-she’s there.  When the clients have questions-she’s there.  When appointments fill up the day-she’s there.  It’s about building relationships and she is good at it!  Janet enjoys building friendships with clients and because of it, they trust her.  To be an integral part of the success of the business is a blessing.

Another blessing was stumbling upon Noelle and The Working Single Mom at a time when Janet needed it most.   Noelle’s strength, teachings, and blunt honesty about her own struggles, burdens &  breakthroughs, Janet learned to change her way of thinking, alter her future and become a stronger woman.  It has helped her have a peaceful, healthy, abundant life.

The biggest blessing of all was raising her two boys.  She gave her ALL to raising them and stand proud at who they’ve become.  Her youngest is off to college soon and she often wonders who will she be separate from her boys?  Giving to and doing for herself is a new thing and she’s anxious & excited at what will come next.  Never forgetting though, ‘Once a mom, always a mom.

This mom’s kind and nurturing spirit fills the room when she walks in.  Her friends look forward to her arrival.  10 years ago though, it was a totally different story!!  She didn’t’ get off the couch, let alone engage with people.  Now as she stands firm in her worth, she is able to say what she means, express herself in a loving way and touch lives one hug at a time.  

Janet continues to hope that she can take her love for supporting single moms to a more workable arena.  Women new to single motherhood, women in their 40’s starting to go through menopause, women who are unsure of themselves.  She knows “If you have someone to help you through it… things can be different.”  

To Be that Voice.  THIS is her passion!!! 

 

Buffie Norby

New Day.

New Life.

New Me.

That’s Buffie in a nutshell.

Buffie lives in a world of serving. Serving everyone and anyone who has a need. Her heart is bigger than many and her tank is overflowing with the compassion, care and love that it takes to get outside of oneself and give and give and..yet again..give.

In this world of battles, Buffie has overcome. All the ragged roads, the disheveled homes, the messed up realities and the wretched choices…. This over comer now lives a life where she sits in joy and gratitude for all she has, all she has been through and all she has become.

Quite an over comer, through and through. Moving from group home to group home, from school to school, and not knowing where the next bite of food or warm blanket was going to come from, she persevered.

In the middle of the mess, there was no vision for seeing a way out. Being in survival mode does that to a person. Building walls, acting out, living on the street were a way of life. It was what she knew, what she deserved and she took it as it showed up.

UNTIL She failed at taking her life, which was the exact sign she needed to dig deeper and love herself as she loved so many. That moment… as natural as the birds fly south, something in her gut told her it was time. Time & reason to change. It tugged at her heart, it breathed life into her soul. Somewhere deep down inside, she knew God was not done with her and there was a reason for all of it.

One step at a time, one miracle at a time, one friend at a time….she moved out of the old mindset, out of the old life, out of the old behaviors and owned her name in the world!

The rest is history.

Ninety pounds lighter on a journey for 90 more to disappear and getting a degree at 47, she smiles at her life and is over joyed with who she is…..

Smart Capable Enough – Buffie

Jude Barry

This middle aged single mom of four is on fire for living life large.  There’s a whole lot of joy, positivity & exhuberance for life going on in this woman!

Jude lives on the East Coast with her 4 kiddos and if she’s not spending quality time with them, she’s either traveling, enjoying her gaggle of girlfriends or working.  Working hard. 🙂

Yes…. her work. It is what allows her to take care of her children, decorate her home and travel abroad.  She is happy with her career, is going on her 19th year and is the happiest while serving her clients.  Her pride in being an insurance agent shines through as she truly cares about each and every client.  They appreciate her honesty & knowledge. There are times when a new customer who is shopping around will call her with a policy they want a quote on and after a heart-full conversation about their why’s and how’s & qualifying reasons, she then gives her ‘Best For You’ options… and they walk away a very satisfied new client.  

She’s one of those gals who shoots from the hip, tells it like it is and looks to speak her truth.  It’s her authenticity & engaging personality that draw you in.  And then it’s her caring soul, listening ear and inquisitive manner that keep you there.  “My friends say I have no strangers,” she says as she laughs at the thought of how truthful it is.   This can come across as ‘too nice’ sometimes, but she doesn’t seem to flutter at the thought of it.  

When Jude went down the road of divorce, she reached out to friends and faithful clients for prayers.  This was one of the toughest times for her.  Not only did it teach her some valuable lessons she’d never change, it showed the people in her life this woman who rocks it every day….it showed them her real, raw, vulnerable side.  This woman who pressed on with a glowing spirit was doing all she could to get through and it touched lives! This truth changed relationships for the best.

Speaking of ‘the best’ is is important for Jude to live her best life every day.  Taking what was taught to her & teaching her children.  THIS is what fills her cup.  Her tea cup that is.  Tea is part of her brand, part of who she is and adds a touch of class to her business logo. The tea cup & the tea leaves have deep meaning to her, as well as the name of her company “ Benefits Caring for You”, which names her 4 children.  She enjoys teaching them all that she does and how she does it.  Maybe one day one of them will be that colleague she is looking to hire.  One with drive, integrity, energy and willingness to work hard.

Jude shares her enthusiasm for life with the people she meets as much as she can.  Going out into the world with her vibe of positive energy, touching people lives with compassion & caring.  She’ll stop and give a compliment or ask a question in hopes to make their day.  She looks forward to making others feel like they matter.  She knows firsthand from all she’s been through that ‘The Energy You Put Out is the Energy You Will Attract.’  This is one of the reminders that drives her.

Her children know by watching their amazing mom what really matters.  Relationships, how you treat people & the footprint you leave behind.  For Jude, it’s her clients, accounts, family & God that give her reason to express gratitude for all she has.  In those moments this go-getter is joyfully reminded just how blessed she is.

Amie Colby

Amie Colby  “I am Love”

Nominated by Amie’s Aunt Candace

What a gem Amie is.  Her spirit is full of grace and love.  She is a mother, a student, a survivor and a woman on fire to bless others with her smile, positive energy and story of transformation.  You would never know she had to work through a history of addiction, self-neglect or being stuck in bed, because now all you see & know is a woman spreading love.  “I am LOVE” is her focus and it is what drives her.  She builds her days, her intentions & her weekly theme from it.  This is what helps her show up for herself. 

 She and her kiddos (son/8, daughter 6 & 2) live in a 2-bedroom apartment in the beautiful state of VT.  Just a hop, skip & a jump from Canada.  The joy that fills her day covers them all, with lots left over.  It wasn’t always this way.  Amie struggled with giving, giving, giving.  Which eventually landed her ill.  Only then did she learn that she MUST tend to herself, she must give to herself, she must love herself.  Now that this is a habit for her, she fills up her LOVE tank.  She has plenty to give away and still feels full at the end of the day.

Amie looks forward to helping others….. “almost to a fault”, she said.  She knows first hand what it feels like to be down and alone, so bringing joy to others is what fills her up and lifts her spirits.  To cheer someone up, make their day and give away a smile, every day, is natural for Amie!  She will have a conversation with a stranger in hopes to make their day.  She goes so far as to call herself ‘Chatty Cathy’ looking forward to yet another conversation to share her love.

She learned at a young age how to be there for others by watching her Granny Tee and her mom.  Her mom was always standing up for others and loving on people… even in the midst of her addictions.  And Granny Tee… what a beautiful woman she was!  Always full of a zest for life with her door was always wide open to others.  She was touching lives and making a difference. 

Currently, Amie is involved in a ‘Women Thrive’ class where she is constantly learning to be a better self, a better mom, a better woman. And now that she is 3 years clean, she is always working on healing past wounds. Growing every day.   There are no regrets for Amie.  If she could do something over, she’s not so sure she’d want to.  She wouldn’t be the woman she is today if she was to start over.  She’s learned a lot and those ‘big’ things she didn’t think she’d get over… she did.  Which reminds her of a song that sings “The girl she used to be…she’s not that girl any more.”

Oh and her 2 bedroom apartment… it’s actually perfect.  The physical closeness they have, has created a loving space for her children. 

Because of Amie’s love for herself and others, she has created a wonderful home in a world she never thought of before.