#MayCultivate2016 Day 4: Crisis

Red and White Emergency Sign --- Image by © Lawrence Manning/Corbis
Red and White Emergency Sign — Image by © Lawrence Manning/Corbis

Faced with crisis, the man of character falls back on himself. He imposes his own stamp of action, takes responsibility for it, makes it his own. – Charles de Gaulle

Everyone responds differently in a crisis. Some people shut down completely. Others jump in and deal with the situation as it happens, only to fall apart later.

Think about some event of crisis in your life. How did you deal with it at the time? How do you view your behavior now that time has passed, and what did you learn about yourself?

Brandee Baltzell is a liberal-moderate wife, mother, career woman, fledgling writer and artist with a grand sense of curiosity.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.


#MayCultivate2016 Day 3: Freedom

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Our freedom can be measured by the number of things we can walk away from. — Vernon Howard

For me it comes from giving up the family restaurant, letting it go and in so doing, letting go of the stresses that had ruled my time.

My questions would be what has give you freedom? Was it from letting go of something, or from jumping into something new?

Renee L. Tennis-McKinley writes sporadically from her haunted old farmhouse, where she lives with two demonic cats, a half blind spaniel, and retired husband.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.


#MayCultivate2016 Day 2: Backspace

My voice is my power

Too often we allow our fears of what people might think of us determine what we think, write or how we act. Because of this, we rely too much on the backspace, or delete key, of our keyboard to dictate our voices rather than our spacebar. Imagine a using keyboard without the delete key available: What would your voice finally be able to say or do if it were finally freed of the backspace?

After writing and illustrating her first bestseller in second grade, “The Lovely Unicorn”, C. Streetlights took twenty years to decide if she wanted to continue writing. In the time known as growing up she became a teacher, a wife, and mother. Retired from teaching, C. Streetlights now lives with her family in the mountains along with their dog that eats Kleenex. Her new memoir, Tea and Madness is now available.

You can follow C. Streetlights on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, andGoodreads.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.


#MayCultivate2016 Day 1: Challenges

difficult roads quote

For years, I swore I was going to be an author, full time. This was how I was going to make my living, build my life, and embrace my passion. Instead, I settled into a position that was comfortable. I had a steady income. It was enough, even if I couldn’t stand my job. Then, my husband and I had Kenna. Born sixteen weeks too soon and weighing in at a meager 9.6 ounces, she changed everything. After 183 days in the hospital, Kenna finally came to the magical place called home…on oxygen, a heart monitor, and a feeding tube. Suddenly, I have to find a way to contribute to our income while working from home. It was just the nudge I needed to write the books I’d always planned to write. Now, nearly twenty novels later, I am blessed to live a life I love, working from home, able to be a mom and have a fulfilling career.

What challenges do you face? How can you turn them into blessings? What can you do to do to live a life you love?

Nicole Andrews Moore lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her husband, a teenage son and daughter, and Kenna. Every day is new and sparkly…which is why she chronicles them on her blog, The Dreamers Do Project. It is a way for her to spread her brand of hope, happiness, and love.

Don’t forget to share your responses by commenting on the blog or using the hashtag #Cultivate16.


#AprilLove2016 Dear Sanctuary

Dear Sanctuary,

This month you’ve greened back up into my favorite place once again. We probably need to replace your tiki torches and add some potted plants (a to-do we’ve had for over 4 years now…), but you bring me such peace. I listen to the birds, cicadas, crickets, wind, and squirrels chattering here. I soak in the ultraviolet light of the sun. I breathe in the fresh mountain air. I delight in the wind playing with my hair and the birds flitting through the trees. I watch my children play on your soft grass. I cozy up by the fire with a refreshing drink and marshmallows. Fireflies — or as I knew them growing up, Lightning Bugs — come out at dusk, lighting up the evening with neon green flashes. I cast off my worries out here and find tranquility.



#AprilLove2016 Dear Laughter

Dear Laughter,

I’m sorry it took me so long to write to you. I’m sorry I didn’t capture a picture of you. You were with me today as I tried to use you as the best medicine. You helped me cheer up my husband during a difficult time, helped to diffuse the stress that exacerbated his already compromised health. You’re a wonderful companion in life, and I’m so glad you’re there for me when times are tough. Thank you!


#AprilLove2016 Dear Change

Dear Change,

You are a large part of my life. I’m always growing and changing. You’re right there, tightly in the bud, ready to burst forth with new life and possibilities. Sometimes you bring painful endings and frightening unknowns, but you always seem to work out beautifully. Your new beginnings lead to happier times, and I live with the reality that life is an evolving creature. Change, you are a big part of life for all of us.



#AprilLove2016 Dear Heart

Dear Heart,

You guide me through life. You stay open so that I can empathize with others. You allow me to feel so deeply, which is both a blessing and a curse. Literally, you pump my blood throughout my body, beating away to keep me alive. You let me know when my stress level’s too high. Thank you for giving me life.

-Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but a manner of traveling.- Margaret Lee Runbeck


#AprilLove2016 Dear USA

Dear USA,

My ancestors came here seeking freedom, opportunities, and a fresh start. The majority saw Lady Liberty welcome their tired, their poor, their huddled masses. You welcomed them with open arms and let them find each other to create my family tree. You blended cultures across Europe to create the body I possess. While these days I struggle to see how they found such opportunities, I realize you’ve grown older and expanded quite a lot. The times have changed, and so have you. I haven’t ventured outside of your borders just yet, although I wouldn’t mind visiting some other countries some day. You’ve sheltered me from the famine and diseases other countries hold. You’ve sheltered me from the war-torn countries. Thank you for being my home.