Grateful to say “Happy Friday”

My new Volvo XC60 provided just the right amount of comfort and safety today.
My new Volvo XC60 provided just the right amount of comfort and safety today.

I am so HAPPY to say it’s Friday! This has been a challenging week, one that prevented me from fulfilling my Blog Post A Day challenge and my 30 Days of Gratitude.

I could rant, moan and groan about this – instead I choose to accept what is placed before me and move on. The good news is that the missed opportunities were not because I just forgot, or had some sort of writer’s block. Instead my absence was due to life truly getting in the way.

So while I didn’t post on these days I will continue my gratitude messages within this post.

Day 10 – I am so grateful that I live in a country and a community that has any number of very good to excellent medical facilities within my reach. Especially grateful for these facilities on Monday as one of my dearest friends need this care and was able to utilize it.

Day 11 – I am grateful to hear that the above referenced friend has been released from the hospital and is happy about the treatment she received.

Day 12 – I will keep with the medical gratitude as today I am grateful for the doctors and nurses who treated my brother at Urgent Care and noticing an irregularity sent him to the nearest hospital for further observation.

Day 13 – I am grateful and thank God for his mercies and for eliminating the need for my brother to have an invasive, yet preventive procedure.

Today (Day 14) I am truly grateful for the vehicle pictured above. A little over a month ago I was blessed with this wonderful machine that has successfully carried me through the first snow storm of 2014! I’m still getting used to her in these conditions, but boy was I happy to have her today!

Now on to a weekend filled with rest and creativity!

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Day 9 of 30 Days of Gratitude – Yay Browns!

Yes I believe! This is where I live!
Yes I believe! This is where I live!

I am grateful this week for the Cleveland Browns! I have been a lifelong fan and not since the 90’s have I been this geeked about my team! I have been disappointed but never to the point of giving up! Today without taking the field my Cleveland Browns are now in 1st place in the NFC North.

Day 8 of 30 Days of Gratitude albeit a day late

I am grateful that I have this space to share what’s on my mind and that when I set a challenge I can alter the postings as needed.

Yesterday there was no way I could post after a very long and hectic day so I’m keeping my challenge by writing two posts.

Brittani Bo Baker graces the cover of the latest edition of Phenomenal Woman Magazine. (Photo by Shelley M. Shockley)
Brittani Bo Baker graces the cover of the latest edition of Phenomenal Woman Magazine. (Photo by Shelley M. Shockley)

This first post is about Phenomenal Woman Magazine. I have the honor and pleasure of serving as the editor of this publication, and I hope that this post will prompt you to check it out. Click here to check it out. Thanks to this publication I can also count Photographer as a job, so I am able to practice two of my favorite passions.

Gearing up for Portraits of Hope 2014

Day 6 in My 30 Days of Gratitude

I am grateful to have family and friends that join me annually in presenting this great event.

In one short month Cleveland’s Portraits of Hope 2014 will take place at the Salvation Army of Greater Cleveland’s Harbor Light facility. This is the third year we have joined forces with this wonderful organization to be a part of the international Help-Portrait movement.

Ladies on a mission
Grateful to these ladies for restoring my faith in the Help-Portrait Cleveland project. Seat (l-r) Stephanie Briggs and Angela Townsend. Standing (l-r) Bele’ Wondwossen, Keshia Johnson and Angela Tucker.

Photographers, graphic designers, make-up artists and other volunteers have given of their time, equipment and love to bring smiles to the faces of mothers and children in transition.

The bright smiles of youth were captured by Photographer Stephanie Briggs.
The bright smiles of youth were captured by Photographer Stephanie Briggs.

The mission of Help-Portrait is for photographers, make-up artists and others to skills and tools to give back to the community. Please join our efforts. If you are interested please leave your contact information in the comments section.

Volunteers Yalinda and Sharyn assess the day's activities.
Volunteers Yalinda and Sharyn assess the day’s activities.

The photos interspersed in this post are from previous events.

Family – Day 2 of 30 Days of Gratitude

Hanging with my sister at Browns game.
Hanging with my sister at the Browns game.

As I work to complete thirty posts in just as many days I am also going to open myself up in a way I have never done in this space. There are many things in my life for which I am grateful but at the top of that list is my family.

Today I’m grateful for the time I was able to spend with my younger sister this weekend. We started with her daughter’s band performance at the Shaker Heights High football game on Saturday and concluded our time with the Cleveland Browns defeat of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers today.

The latter experience was made possible by my niece. At this point in this post I’m experiencing a block because the simple act of speaking of myself in this space makes me uncomfortable.

That’s a good thing because I will now be forced to evaluate this experience and hopefully rectify it in future posts.

Not the greatest but this is a successful post, so NaBloPoMo is met for the second day in a row.