Why Women Tend to Excel in Humanities Careers

Why Women Tend to Excel in Humanities Careers


Studying human culture shows us some of the most incredible traits of the human race. Small nuances can make or break civilizations, influence countless generations, and result in large and lasting changes.
Looking at statistics, women tend to excel in humanities-driven careers. They have an innate sense for paying attention to those smaller things, recognizing patterns in individuals, and interacting with people on a deeper level. Their unique outlook allows them to overcome circumstances that may otherwise seem impossible. Let’s explore some of the reasons why women tend to shine in humanities careers.

Being Personable
Humanities careers can vary widely in what they do, but all tend to have one common factor: they deal with the interaction of people. Women excel at communication because they tend to understand their own emotions and behaviors better than their male counterparts. They understand the importance of a greeting, of being on time, listening, and ensuring that personal issues outside a business transaction remain separate.

Whether you are a teacher or sales agent, both require a high level of empathy to do be done well. Professionals need to understand the people they work with, which means they must account for differences in age, ethnicity, and other factors to be successful.
The reason women tend to be more successful with empathy, related to their careers, revolves around the way they think. Most women better understand that each person wants to be special, and have certain requirements that contribute towards morals and ethics. Honing these skills with a degree in sociology or psychology can give them an edge in how they are able to interact with more people.

Analyzing others and the patterns they stick to is very necessary for many humanities careers like genealogists, historians, and diplomats. Women who are more familiar with their own faults and strengths find recognizing those things in others to simple.
To become even better at analyzing other people, some women find studying psychology, sociology, and anthropology to be helpful. This can help form a complete picture of what people tend to be thinking at a given moment. Getting certifications and degrees in these fields will help to further a humanities career and there are many different ways to become certified.

What is a board certified behavior analyst? What does it take to become licensed as a social worker? Talking to others in the field and educators will help women determine what paths they can take as a humanities graduate.

Understanding Challenges
The most prominent strength women tend to possess is their understanding for the underrepresented. Most are familiar with working in a world where male counterparts tend to be paid more, to acquire raises more easily, and are praised for doing less work.
In careers where social work or the law is involved, women excel because they understand the problems of the people whom they work with. They understand just how hard it can be to be different, or to be seen as “lesser”, despite doing the same as anyone else. This gives them the unique ability to fight more fiercely for people who cannot fight for themselves.

The unique situations women encounter, their ability to notice important minor details, their ability to emphasize, and their analytical abilities make them excellent fits for many humanities careers. This gives many advantages in offering superior work in careers seemingly dominated by men.


Nepali Chhori Means Nepali Daughter

We came across the Nepali Chhori blog by accident — via a link a singer posted on google.   So, we visited the link thinking we were contacting the singer, but were actually contacting Richa Pokhrel and her blog.  After a couple of email conversations, we became aware of our mistake.  However, we were so moved by the women’s stories and the other content on the blog that we wanted to share it here.     Richa, first of all, congratulations on the award your blog received and second, thank you so much for allowing us to share you and your work here.   We also thank you for uniting Nepalese women and helping the overall collective of women to gain more rights, respect, appreciation and understanding. Women need women.  Together we are strong.   nepali The heading of the website reads: “Being a Nepali Woman in Today’s World.” First, tell our readers what “Nepali Chhori” means and second, what was your reason for starting your Nepali Chhori blog?


Nepali Chhori means Nepali daughter. I wanted to create a safe space for Nepali woman, no matter where they live, to come together and talk about things that affect us. I couldn’t find any place on the internet for just Nepali woman so I thought a blog was the way to go. I realize that we aren’t going to have the same experiences but we will be able to understand each other and come together.


How many different writers contribute to your blog?

Currently we have 6 regular writers, including myself but we do have guest authors from time to time. We are always looking for more Nepali women writers.


Are they all Nepali women?

All of them are Nepali, but we all live in different parts of the world.


We found several stories where writers talk about their experiences as a part of the culture of United States and how it conflicts or varies with the Nepalese culture that their parents hold on to. One story specifically was “Adulthood,” where the writer’s mother flew out to her college to meet with her college advisor. She felt it was a little over the top, but by her mother’s standards, it was perfectly appropriate. In your opinion, for situations like this, is this culture difference a really big problem or not a problem at all?


In that example, I think that was very extreme as in terms of cultural differences. I don’t think most Nepali parents would do that in America. In general, Nepali parents are very involved in their children’s lives, even as we get older. Even though I am in my late 20s, my mother still calls and asks if I have eaten and what I have eaten. I am married and they still see me as a little girl. Independence and individuality isn’t something that is taught in Nepal, we are a society that depends on our family and friends. For of us who grew up outside the country, we struggle with this notion because in Western cultures, independence and individuality is something that is taught early on. Sometimes the things our parents do seem extreme here but some these situations wouldn’t be extreme in Nepal.


Tell our readers a little bit about Nepal. For instance, where is Nepal? What is the population size and what is the dominant religion?

Nepal is a tiny country between China and India. It has roughly 27 million people and many different ethnicities and languages. It is also home to the highest mountains in the world known as the Himalayas. It is known as the Hindu Kingdom because majority of its people are Hindus but there also a lot of Buddhists and smaller populations of other religions.

We watched the segment on Nepal from the documentary entitled “Girl Rising” which taught us that girls are forced to work (as slaves) from a very young age under the guise of “bonded labor?” There was a law passed in 2000 to end that. Do you think it still continues?

Yes, it still continues. Unfortunately, even with the law passed, society is slow to make those changes and frankly some people are morally okay with treating girls as slaves. Also, due to poverty, parents get tricked when they think they are sending their children for a job but end up being trafficked. However, there are organizations that are working towards ending these practices across the country.

Nepali Chori was Honored as "Most Diverse Blog"
Nepali Chori was Honored as “Most Diverse Blog”

What is the woman’s role in Nepalese society?

In the traditional sense, it’s to be a good daughter, then a good wife, and a good mother. There always a male figure in your life that you are supposed to obey, your father, your brother, then your husband. However, there are a lot of women and girls who aren’t conforming to these narrow expectations. Many women are choosing to marry when they want, choosing to have kids later in life, pursuing their career goals, and being politically involved. Women in Nepal do a lot of work but never get credit for all that they do.

What kind of things do you feel need to be changed in that society as it relates to women?

  1. Citizenship through mothers. Currently, it’s very difficult for people to get citizenship without proving both parents are Nepali. This affects millions of people, especially children who are born to single mothers, refugee mothers, mothers who were abandoned by their husbands, and Nepali women who married foreign nationals. They are deemed stateless. The Citizenship Certificate is needed to do the most basic of things in Nepal like registering for school, buying property, vote, opening a bank account, etc. However, children of Nepali men who marry foreign nationals don’t have this problem because they automatically get citizenship through descent. Nepal is currently working on drafting the new constitution, there has been big activism in changing the law so that citizenship can be granted either by the mother or father, not both.
  1. Nepali Chori Blog celebrated their first year - April 6, 2015
    Nepali Chhori Blog celebrated their first year – April 6, 2015

    Education. Many girls in the rural areas don’t have access to education even though basic education is supposed to be free for everyone.

  1. Access to resources. It’s nearly impossible to get bank loans and women can’t inherit land easily.
  1. Menstruation practices. There are still practices of “chaupadi” in rural Nepal for women who are menstruating. This essentially means they can’t practice in normal activities like cooking, cleaning, being around others. This was banned in 2005 but it is still being practiced.

What can we do collectively to help create positive change for girls and women in Nepal?

We can believe in them, we can encourage them, and we can give them support. For any change to happen, we must fully believe in the capabilities of other women, especially those who don’t come from the same background as us. We as women need to let go our our stereotypes and we need to stop making judgements about other women’s choices.

Richa the proud graduate!
Richa the proud graduate!

What do you want out of life personally and what is your mission in life, if you have one?

My mission in life is to be the best person I can be. It’s very easy to try to be someone you aren’t, especially with all the pressure we get from our families, friends, and society. I want to live an authentic life that doesn’t dwell too much on how I look, how much money I make, and what things I own. But more on how I treat others and how I interact with nature. My life is filled with meaningful friendships, room for growth, and the ability to not take myself too seriously. I hope that continues as I get older.     http://nepalichori.com/ https://twitter.com/nepalichoriblog

Let Our Children Fail


by T.M. Todrovich


Throughout the years I have had teenaged children, I have heard too often that one or both of a child’s parents thought they weren’t good enough. Statements such as, “You will never amount to anything”, “You can’t make it in the military”, “Why are you even thinking about college? You can’t do it?” and so many other derogatory comments have been shared with me by young adults.

As a parent, I know teens tend to exaggerate and do not understand where their parents are coming from, and when talking with teens, I do my best to keep this in mind; however, many times the pain on the teen’s face reveal the deep, dark, sad truth. Some of the young adults have risen above these demeaning remarks and set out to prove their parents wrong, but many rehash the statements over and over, like an old tape repeating constantly.

When we discourage our children, tell them they are not good enough, or even if our action and facial expressions show it when our words are more kind, we are setting our child up for failure. We are destroying their self-confidence, their self-esteem, and their desire to better themselves. This is a tragedy.

I know there are times my kids think of something and I am not entirely sure they can accomplish their dreams. Occasionally their dream is so distant and far from their abilities I am certain it is not something they will be able to do. I look back at these dreams and although I do not recall, I’m sure I have discouraged them in one way or another. We all make mistakes, say the wrong thing, and do things we wish we could change, and usually this is done with the excuse we are only trying to help our child.

Is this the best course of action? Is it wise to tell our child, “Um, sweetie, you have poor eyesight and will never be a pilot,” or “Dear, you are clumsy and will never be able to be a cheerleader?” Yes, we do it because we don’t want our child to try and fail. Yes, we do it with the best intentions. But is it right?

For some parents, their intentions are not honorable. They don’t believe their child can do anything and discourage them from trying. One young friend of my family’s wants to join the armed services. When he mentions it to his parents, he is blatantly told he isn’t smart enough and is too lazy. I know this young adult well, and that is far from the truth. For this young man, he sees no future because his parents tell him repeatedly he isn’t good enough.

How do we change this thinking? How do we encourage a child who has been told they can’t achieve their dreams that they should try and even if they fail, they have something to be proud of? Is it possible?

For parents like our friend’s, they have to change their thinking and look at their son with new, less judging eyes and see the good, hardworking, determined man inside. For other parents who have good intentions, we must think before we speak, something we try to teach our children to do. We must check our reactions, our facial expressions, and do some deep soul-searching. We must find out why we feel the way we do.

If we are afraid our child will fail, we must realize that our child is going to fail at something. We all do. Failing is necessary for finding our strengths, our weakness, our dreams, and what is worth fighting for. Failing is an essential ingredient in learning how to succeed. If and when our child fails, instead of having a smug, “I told you so” attitude, we must teach our child the positive outcome of failing, and we must express our pride in the fact they tried.

Our job as parents is to lead our children into an independent life, a life where they find who they are, what they are meant to do, and what they love. By lovingly discussing the pros and cons of a dream and allowing our child to make his or her own decision, we are promoting independence, confidence, and growth.

The next time my youngest child says he wants to be a professional gamer, I refuse to point out that he is mediocre at games, that I do not allow him the time to play for hours and hours on end, and that he does not have the best gaming set up. Instead, I will encourage him to keep dreaming, encourage him to read everything he can find on gaming (I am a firm believer reading, even if only articles on gaming, is essential), and let him learn all he can. Perhaps he will one day prove me wrong and be a millionaire gamer, or perhaps he will realize he isn’t quite cut out for professional gaming and it should be a hobby. When he reaches adulthood, the decision is his, not mine. I will take comfort in knowing I supported him to the best of my abilities. If he fails, I will be there with open arms. If he succeeds, I will be there cheering him on. And whatever happens, he will know he always had my support.



Click here for a link to the publications written by Tina Toler Keel.

Ways to Save On Your Auto Insurance

If you are driving a vehicle on the road, you must have car insurance.  Insurance protects you financially if you have an accident.  They will cover any liability you may have if you cause an accident.  And depending on your policy, they may also provide medical coverages.  There are a few ways to save on auto insurance:


Telematics: There are a growing number of insurance firms that are offering a “telematics” or “black box” insurance policy. This requires the driver to have a GPS device installed in the car to track how the vehicle is being driven. In exchange for you using this device, the insurance company will offer you a slightly lower rate.  The important thing to remember is that you or whomever is driving the vehicle has to drive well and safely.

Packages:   Many insurers offer package discounts if you carry multiple policies with them such as automobile, homeowners or apartment, boat, RV, etc.

Discounts: There are periodical, seasonal or holidays discounts. Most insurers offer a wide variety of discounts.  If you are a member of AAA, AARP or other organizations, inquire as to whether or not your insurance company offers a discount for the group that you are a member of.  Ask if they have a safe driver discount also if you have an excellent driving record.

Higher deductibles:  Opt for the highest deductible possible. A deductible is the amount that you pay whenever there is an accident or other insurance-covered situation.  Try to make sure you have the money saved and on hand in case you ever do need to apply it to a situation.

Shop around.  There are companies like don allred insurance that you can contact to get the best rate for you.



Do you need to have the latest vehicle with all of the newest features and technology or can you get away with just basic transportation?   One of the best ways to save on insurance is to drive an older vehicle.  The newer the vehicle and the more coverage you need, the higher the insurance cost is going to be.  With older vehicles, depending on the cost, you may or may not need collision coverage.  Collision pays for physical damage to your car.  That’s a big savings right there.  If you get a basic car for a few thousand dollars, then all you need to get is liability coverage.  Keep in mind, however, that is something happens to that car, you will have to get your own replacement vehicle.

But with an older car, you pay much less for insurance and for property taxes.  So, if this is something that you think can work for you, look into it.


Mom Has Homework

Submitted by Delicia Watson, Massachusetts

Going to school has been very challenging for me.  I am 42 and have three teenagers at home.  I also work full-time.  I am doing this for a couple of different reasons.  One, is that I always wanted to go to college but just never did.  I started working and just kept working.  The second is to inspire my children so that they will also strive for their own goals, especially when it comes to getting an education.

There are days when I am a little short with them and I would like to do a better job of catching myself before I start snapping at everyone.  My husband is great and picks up the slack a little bit when I get snappy.  He compassionately reminds me or points out when I need to back up a little bit or ease it down and tells the kids – “Mom has homework and she’s a little edgy.”

Then the whole environment lightens up and the kids play it off and say things to me like, “Yeah mom, I had to study really hard for my history exam!”

My family’s been great and I am honored to have the privilege to do this.

My husband has an engineering degree.  He was smart and did the whole college thing right after high school.  His support of me is amazing.  Working, going to school and co-managing a household has been a challenge.  But, I am determined to be fifty years old with a degree … even if no one hires me after all of my hard work because of my age!  :  )

I admit that occasionally I use the service of a company who can write my paper cheap.  I don’t think it’s cheating at all because I do know all of the content and understand everything.  It’s just that time – that old man time – is always on my back and I need to keep up with everything.

All in all it’s been a wonderful, fulfilling experience and I am blessed to be able to do this.  Women Move the Soul, I know you are all about inspiration and I hope my little story has inspired someone else like me to take the challenge and get their degree.  There is nothing like an education that gives you a further understanding of the things in our lives in terms of history, economics, etc.  And there is nothing like college training that really teaches you to open up your mind and to think more clearly.


Earn a Professional Certification From IBM

Earning a professional certification from IBM after passing their certification exams offers a variety of benefits to an ambitious technical professional. Among other professionals in the industry, certification is a recognized way to prove an individual’s technical skill. Earning certification therefore allows professionals to have a way to differentiate themselves from among other less qualified technical professionals. Additionally, having the benefit of the industry recognition of their skill set allows professionals to earn respect from among their peers.

certification2Although many professionals may believe that earning a degree will help them pursue a career in a technical field, earning a degree will not prove to potential employers that the professional is capable of performing the technical skills required for a job. Passing IBM certification exams will demonstrate to potential employers that candidates are able to perform the specific job tasks that their IBM certification covers. Professionals who are certified may experience increases in employment opportunities, greater opportunity for bonuses, increased advancement within their career field, and significant increases in pay above those experienced by professionals who do not have not passed IBM certification exams.

Candidates who pass their IBM certification exams prove that they are up to date in the latest developments in IBM products and solutions. The ability to continuously keep up with current trends in technology is an important trait for any successful technical professional.


My Suffering Sisters



Submitted by Alison Gonzales from Los Angeles, California – USA


Immigration is a major issue not just in the U.S. but in other parts of the world. People claim their inherent right to exclude other races and cultures from coming into their countries.  People of color specifically are perceived as being dirty, ignorant, lazy and as people who weigh heavy on public support systems.  I can say personally that this is not true.  Mexicans are just as intelligent and diligent as others and we should have a right to live side by side with others in America.  I want to tell you to the story of Lolita, a young Mexican immigrant who is a mother, wife and daughter.

Lolita and her husband arrived in the US in 2010.  They came to work in the agricultural industry.  Both were very hard working people trying to make a better life for themselves and their families as they sent money home on a regular basis.  Her husband was merely walking down the street one day and was attacked by Americans.  He was badly beaten and taken to the hospital where he later died.  Lolita suffers.

Juanita came to the US in 2007.  Since she was here she had two children.  Though also a very hard worker, doing the best she could to provide for her children, she was eventually discovered to be illegal and immediately deported.  She tried to tell the officer that she had children in daycare, but they would not listen to her.  She was put out of the US without even being able to see her children.  Fortunately, she was able to get in touch with the woman who was was watching her children while she worked and is making arrangements for them.

There is the story of Rosita, who was raped and murdered during the perilous journey across the desert to America.  Her murders will never be known and brought to justice.

These are just three stories that are indicative of the hardships my sisters face in trying to come to America to work and create better lives for themselves and their families.  Believe it or not, there are some that are even far more horrific.  I make an appeal to the American people, especially to women, to stand up and speak out against the discrimination that our sisters face.   Please support immigration laws that allow human beings to be treated as human beings, not a creatures and things that should be discarded.  We are sisters, mothers, wives and daughters, just like you.

If you are in fear of being deported, please seek legal help from immigration attorneys.  There are people out there who want to help you.




Learn Something New

Hey Ladies, me again talking about making music.  I can’t help it.  I’m on this journey of musical discovery.  It is awakening things inside of me that I did not know were there.  I am understanding the layout of the piano a little more in terms of where the keys are with certain tones.  I am finding my way through a little better.  Reading music hasn’t gotten much easier, but I am looking forward to when it does and I know if I keep at it, it will.  Creating or building anything takes time.  No matter how much we would like to have a magic wand, it’s not there.  We will gain these things and learn these things if we continue our pursuit of them.


Use your precious time wisely.  Rest when you should rest, work when you should work and make sure you set aside time for yourself to learn new things!


For my musicians out there, remember there’s tons of places you can buy equipment.   But, just like in life, you’ve got to have connections!  For equipment try great rca to xlr at musician’s friend.

Playing Your Music Ladies?


From the Editor, Tomaca

Guitar lessons anyone? Piano? I am still on this issue because after my last post, I had some women hit me back and say things like, “I’ve always wanted to learn how to play the cello” — or the sax or piano, etc.  I friend of mine who is 45 and is learning how to play the drums thanked me for writing about it because though she feels good about what she’s doing, other people think she’s a little off her rocker for pursuing such a thing.  But, she’s not.  And, she has the support of her children, who think it’s really cool.  She gets to sit in from time to time with the church band and play.  She’s not that good just yet, but if she keeps at it, she will be.  If I, at my age, can pursue understanding how to play a piano, you can pursue your passion for playing music.   I may never be a concert pianist, but that’s okay.  I am excited about every little new thing that I learn to do.  I like the tones, the sound and it helps me as a vocalist with my ear training and phrasing.

If you want to get your groove on with guitar, there are a great places where you can get your gear.  And, once you get rolling with that guitar, you can get fancy with it by using bigsby tremolo at musicians friend.

So if you dream of being a music creator or participating in music beyond playing air guitar or singing along with the words, take action.

Schools are starting soon.  Make sure that music and art are a part of your child’s education.  Art and music are essential ingredients in life, not just for them, but also for us – the parents.  They say that art imitates life, but often life will imitate art and it is the creativity and the art in all of us that make the world a better place.

Some people may say, “I’m not an artist.”  I don’t believe that.  Art does not mean just painting, drawing or playing an instrument.  It is a way of life.  There is an art to everything that is done, from fixing automobiles to cooking, to managing people.  Everyone is gifted at something or some things.  Maybe you’re a great cook; people are always complimenting your food.  Maybe that little kid down the street is so inspired by the way you always stop to say hello and ask about their day.  Maybe you pets are extremely well-behaved because you’ve done a great job of training them — and people come to you for pointers.  There is an art to everything that is done.  Find your strengths, add strength to your weaknesses and enjoy your life.  The better you are at being you, the happier and healthier you and the people you impact become.  Okay!  Lecture finished.  Party on.  Play your music your way!

Debra Britt – Celebrating History through the Eyes of a Black Doll Collector

Debra Britt is the founder of the Doll E Daze Project &  Museum, Inc., the national Black doll museum.  They have a collection of over 6,000 dolls; they provide education and workshops and raise self-esteem in young Black children.  She tells us how it all got started.

I guess the biggest question is why did you decide to open a Black Doll Museum?

There was never a plan to open the museum. I am a Christian and I believe that my life purpose was to open this museum. As a business person, I  know that  failure to plan is a plan for failure.  However, the events in my life called me to this ministry. Entering the 5th grade, my teacher had difficulties accepting a black child in his room, therefore I endured pain and humiliation on a daily basis being called a monkey and taunted by him. I knew this not to be true and tried to ignore him and educate myself with history and geography while I was in his class. I have a seizure disorder that in 1996 left me disabled and unable to travel alone or long distances. I began to research dolls I had collected.  In 1999, my husband and I adopted two girls who had been emotionally and physically abused.  They needed love and positive reinforcement about who they were.  In 2004 I began my journey with my sister Felicia Walker and Tamara Mattisson to ensure that all children have the tools to become strong, confident, loving, lovable and independent. That begins with positive self-esteem – accepting the skin you’re in and loving it.

The museum chose me.

I acquired 3000 dolls on my own.  I know what a powerful impact is made to see a doll in your image that you can

Debra Britt, Founder Doll E Daze Project & Museum
Debra Britt, Founder Doll E Daze Project & Museum

call beautiful. In addition, through my research I have actually proven that teaching history with artifacts is an empowering experience. The museum’s physical space allows me to do that on a daily basis. We enlighten and uplift a child in crisis.


Where do your dolls come from?

The dolls at the museum come from all over the world.  When my baby sister Kareema Thomas was 25 years old, she had a stroke. There was no medical reason. They told us she would not be able to walk again as she was paralyzed. She saw Byron Lars “Limelight” Barbie in an Essence magazine and told her four older sisters she wanted it. That weekend we put her in a wheel chair and took her to several malls looking for the doll. It was nowhere to be found. However, we told her she could have any other doll that she wanted if she attempted to get the doll. She knocked a couple down and we brought them for her. Every weekend after that for at least a year, this was a ritual – getting her to take small steps. It then became a bonding for us.  My mother eventually joined us.

We then began traveling across country, all the while searching for dolls during our vacations, at flea markets and doll shows. We used timeshares and discovered conventions and other collectors. While Kareema ‘s interest was in Barbie, we all took on different interests.  I like vintage dolls, Felicia loves Native American dolls, my mother – porcelain, Tammy, miniatures and clothing and Celeste likes African dolls. We also uncovered the collecting bug of “action figures” in my brothers, as well as Barbie’s and fashion dolls they said it was for their daughters. That was almost 17 years ago. We still travel and now the daughters ,granddaughters cousins and nieces all join us. It is a family affair.


How many do you have in the collection at this point?

At This point we own 6,273 dolls of which none are duplicate.  This does include my extensive collection of Black Santa’s, Angels and cloth dolls, We keep 1500-2000 dolls on the floor daily. We rotate the displays every 6 weeks and also put dolls on display in several libraries that we collaborate  with.


How many do you plan to have? 

Felicia Walker
Felicia Walker

I actually have no idea how many we will have. We tell the African American experience with our dolls and history never ends.  If someone donates a doll to us and if we already own that doll, we clean and restore it.  If we are called during the holidays, we use those dolls for our doll giveaway.  They are given with love to girls in foster care, homeless shelters and battered women’s shelters.


If this a nonprofit or for profit business?  Are you looking for donations?

We are a registered 501(c) 3 non profit organization and do accept and need donations to sustain the museum.


What supports the museum financially?

The museum is supported totally by donations and through our doll making workshops and bully prevention program we have created partnering with schools. We currently work with Hartford Performs in the Hartford Public School system. Our programs meet the curriculum framework standards for social studies, history and the arts. Readers can support us through donations, memberships, volunteering and the purchase of merchandise.


Are any of the dolls for sale?

We do have dolls for sale at the museum. The dolls range from African wrap dolls, fashion dolls, and soft sculptured dolls. Many of our dolls come from the cottage industry of black doll artists. We also partner with several small businesses such as River Trading and Pretty Brown Girls.

Tamara Mattison
Tamara Mattison

Understanding that your dolls are probably from a variety of time periods, what is the range?  How old is the oldest one you have and where did she come from?

The dolls range from the late 1700-present in all mediums. We have sold some dolls to keep our doors open.  We have an 1847 wishbone doll, 1885 paper doll and a bottle doll from 1830. My oldest doll is from 1796 and I received them a set from the house I moved into as a child. They will be leaving soon as I need to sell so we can keep our doors open.


There was a time when Black dolls just were not made in America.  When was the first time you had your own Black doll and what did it mean to you?

This is true.  Black dolls weren’t readily accessible in America, my grandmother Jessie was a maid and she often bought home toys and clothes from the children she took care of. She would painstakingly take the white dolls apart and dye them in a pot with rite dye to provide me with a black doll.  She made me an African wrap doll and gave me a history lesson on the origin when I was just 8 years old. So memories of black dolls have been there for me.

In 2004, I wrote the a book entitled “Legend of Cecilia.” It is a story of the first African princess, the princess of courage. It will be available in September and is also a musical that is in process. It will be on our website for sale during our Grand Opening Celebration Black Doll Fest, Sept. 27-29,2013.  The National Black Doll Museum presented by the Doll E Daze Project is located at 288 N. Main Street  in Mansfield, Ma .


Please tell our readers where the museum is located and what your hours are?  And how can they find more information?

We are open Thursday-Monday 9-5 pm.  We are open in the evening by appointment and closed Tuesdays & Wednesdays.  Our admission fee is $13.00 for adults and $9.00 for children and seniors. We can provide an hour-long tour of the museum.  More information is available at our website www.nbdmhc.org or by calling us at (774) 284-4729


Doll E Daze Project & Museum, Inc.

288 N.Main St.

Mansfield, Ma 02048

Website:  www.nbdmhc.org

Read about them in the Boston Globe

Join them on Facebook:  National Black Doll Museum

Doll E Daze blog

School Starts Soon!


Submitted by Tomaca

Is it too soon to think school about at the end of July?  Don’t you want to enjoy the rest of the summer without the thoughts of the back to school scenario?  The stores have already started pushing the purchase of school supplies.  Kind of like how they push Christmas shopping on us in October – before Halloween.

But maybe it’s not too early for those who want to be fully prepared.  If you have a tight budget, you need to spread out the purchase of clothes over a period of time.  If your children attend schools that require them to wear uniforms, you are better off than most because the need (or perceived need by your child) for the style and variety is not there.  A sturdy pair of shoes and sneakers are always needed.  But of course, nowadays kids are conditioned to desire diversity.  The endless commercials by the stores condition and program those young minds (and our older minds) to need, to desire, to want.  We live beyond our means to project that are not real.  They are crafted and fashioned by an industry who is programming us to spend, spend, spend.

What about cell phones?  How many children do you have, how many of them have cell phones and how much does it all cost? Hasn’t all of this spending gotten out of hand?  If it’s a problem for you, how do you deal with it?

I guess I am painting a negative picture.  But, education in itself is a wonderful thing.  Learning, reading, studying, growing – this is beautiful.  The gaining of knowledge is the beginning of the development of wisdom.  Learned people excel in a lot of areas of their life.  Younger children learn facts in school.  As they get older and they begin to learn and develop thinking, processing and reasoning skills.  One of the benefits of college is that it helps you to develop these skills.

A friend of mine recently acquired her master’s degree and said that no one will tell her just anything ever again.  Knowledge is power.  Education is power.  Children who are not looking forward to school need to understand these things.  Education is essential.

For our college students, I wonder how many of them struggle to keep up with the daily homework.  Professors will say to you things like “read the chapters 7, 8, 9 and 10, and we’ll continue the discussion tomorrow.”  Or, “write 20 pages on the subject and have it done by tomorrow’s class. ”  I wonder if some of our kids would run to an on-line company for essay writing service, or download papers that are already written about the subject they have to report on.

There are programs available that check for plagiarism and they’re very accurate.  So, it’s hard to get by with not writing your own work or turning in original content.   For those of us who work full-time – in the home and outside of the home – and are taking courses, hiring a writing service might not be a bad idea.  The important thing is to understand what is being written about and to know the material of study.  I think then it’s acceptable to hire a service.

But, for now let’s enjoy August, the sun and the warmth of summer.  It’s still great beach weather and relaxation and vacations are still calling!


Accounting for Your Accounts


submitted by Tomaca

accounting2Wouldn’t it be great just to have a pile of money and a supply that never runs out?  A lot of us are working from paycheck to paycheck with little to nothing in-between.  Why is that?  Is it because we spend too much or don’t have enough to spend?  Are we living beyond our means?

It’s tough.  The cost of basic life stuff is so incredibly high these days.  Food and gas expenses are extreme.  The commercial food that we get from the grocery store is being packaged in smaller and smaller containers with higher and higher prices.  It’s a shame what they are doing to us.

One way around this expense is to not buy commercial food products.  Instead buy the ingredients that make those things and cook the old fashioned way, which in fact is the healthier way.  Don’t by instant pancake mix.  Buy flour, sugar, milk, eggs, baking power and make your own.  Commercially processed syrup is garbage.  It’s full of chemicals.  You can make your own very easily with sugar, brown sugar and water.  In equal parts, you put it in a small pot on the stove and heat slowly while stirring until everything is blended.  Buy maple extract to give it the maple flavor.

Buy dried beans; soak them the required amount of time and cook them while seasoning them to your taste.

If we take a step back from our harried life pace and put more time and love into our food, we and our families are healthier, stronger and more loving.  Yes, more loving – because you are what you eat.   If you are eating commercially processed and chemical laden food, it affects the mind, body and spirit.

For gas expenses, drive less and walk more if possible.  Commute, ride share.  Plan your route so you can do more stops in one trip.

These are just some little things that you can do that will add up to big things over time.

Account for your accounts.  Business-minded women (and moms!) are always looking at ways to stretch the dollar, to eliminate waste and to save more.  With a mind on income tax season which is always going to occur without fail (unfortunately), you have to be creative and responsible with your money.  A good accountant is a necessity.  Even if you do your own taxes, you may have questions from time to time and you need a professional person to turn to.  There are people who make the study of money and taxes their entire life.  If you don’t have someone like that in your network, you need to include someone like that.  Financial planning is essential at every age.  Of course, if you start when you are younger with building your savings and revenue for retirement, you will be better off than someone who waits until they are in their 50’s or 60’s.   Though it’s never too late to start preparing and to learn different ways.

No matter where you are, there are experts that you can turn to.  You can use accountants in Raleigh, or accountants in Boston.  I’m am not familiar with how systems work in other countries, but in the U.S., we are relegated to an annual tax system.

Learn to work smarter, not harder.  Learn to manage your money and your accounts wisely.  The habits you create for yourself today determine where you’ll end up!









What Are You Doing to Maintain Good Health?


Who do you see?  Do you see a natural physician or a traditional western medicine physician?

FD3_300x250My own personal preference is to see a natural physician.  If find that they are better equipped at treating the whole body, versus focusing on one particular part that seems to be acting up.  For instance, I went to the doctor to find out about bladder issues that I was having.  They gave me antibiotics for the condition and it went away, but then it kept coming back.  Finally, I went to a natural doctor who checked my whole body.  The discovery was that there were issues with my uterus (that had no obvious symptoms) and that put pressure on my bladder.  So, once the uterine issues were resolved, my bladder issues were also resolved.

The body is a whole entity and everything is connected.  When parts are treated in isolation, there is no guarantee that the real cause of the problem will be remedied.

The body is also a chemical creating factory.  It is self healing if you feed it the proper foods and nutrition.  Staying way from sodas, colas, fast foods, meats laced with antibiotics and growth hormones, vegetables grown in pesticides, genetically modified foods and diary and meat products generated by stressed out animals, is the best way to go.

Another rule of thumb is to stay away from anything WHITE – white sugar, white flour, white potatoes and white rice.  A regular and daily intake of these types of foods will only stimulate and escalate our insatiable need for junk food, sweets, starches and commercially prepared snacks.

Sugar and flour in their natural state are brown.  They created a bleaching process to turn these things white and in the process destroyed the nutrition in them.

Do some research as to what foods are healthy and nutritious for our bodies versus those that are not.  Study, learn and grow.

Being more natural is not a complicated process, though changing habits can be difficult.  But if you do, you will gain better health, more energy and vibrancy.  We want longer lives and we want lives that do not end up with degeneration, illness and disease.  Start today with your new life plans for you diet and behavior.   You might want to sign up for the doctor’s health e-bulletin.  Let us know how it works out for you!



Are you comfortable with the results that you get from your regular doctor?  Are you interested in homeopathic medicine?  You decide.


Are You Struggling with Dyslexia? The Healthy Emotions Story Is For You!






By Susan Jane Smith B.Sc.
In October 2012, Elaine Barnes my business partner, and I were talking about our experiences as therapists (counselors). We realized that for people with dyslexia it was a difficult process when we recommended that they read self-help books to facilitate their changes. Both of us are consummate readers and it was natural for us to suggest books that could help people improve their quality of life. Clients with dyslexia either avoided trying the reading material or were forced to explain their difficulties with reading.dyslexia

Healthy Emotions Ltd. was born that day. We realized that there was a gap in the market for people struggling with emotional issues and dyslexia. Having dyslexia does not stop you from being sad, angry, stressed, depressed, in an unhappy relationship, or bereaved. The new audio website http://www.HealthyEmotions.co.uk currently displays the self-help e-books that I have written, audio books written by other authors on an Amazon widget in the Healthy Emotions Store and aids for dyslexics in another widget. Did you know that a Kindle can read to you?

Famous dyslexics Richard Branson, Henry Winkler, Kara Tointon, and Erin Brockovitch are talking on You Tube and you can find those channels easily through our website. On our You Tube channel you will see a large selection of people talking about dyslexia and all this is audio.

An early decision was that our website is available in audio so just click that button on the Home Page. We are in the process of making audio books ourselves. Our blogs are audio so do check them out weekly.

If you or someone you know are dyslexic come and visit our Forum page and tell us about your experience with dyslexia and share with other people.  There is also a Resources page if you want more information about dyslexia.  You can find out about Elaine and I through the About Us page and do Contact Us with your feedback please.


susan_smithSusan Jane Smith B.Sc.


an audio experience that opens horizons…
Are you dyslexic?  We’d love to hear from you about your experiences. This is an audio website and we will be creating audio material about emotional issues.  In the meantime a Kindle will read my 20 self-help e-books to you!


I blog at www.Goodreads.com & www.HealthyEmotions.co.uk

Twitter: SusanJaneSmith

Facebook: SusanJaneSmith & HealthyEmotions for a discussion page

Linked In: Susan Jane Smith

Google +: Susan Jane Smith

Vitamin D Deficiency: A Silent Epidemic Among African Americans




Submitted by Rita Umile


Vitamin D has been big news in Public Health recently, as research indicates that its role in the body extends far greater than simply ensuring bone health through the prevention of such diseases as rickets, osteomalacia and osteoporosis.

Studies also suggest that achieving and maintaining an adequate Vitamin D blood serum level, as determined by a 25(OH)D blood test, is essential to the prevention and treatment of autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS) and type 1 diabetes.  Additionally, Vitamin D appears to play a protective role in cardiovascular health, various types of cancer, autism, depression, schizophrenia, and respiratory conditions such as cystic fibrosis.afamer

It is no secret that the number of health conditions positively influenced by maintaining adequate levels of Vitamin D seems to increase daily.

What has been kept secret is the magnitude of Vitamin D deficiency within the African American population.

Certainly, because of our indoor lifestyles, Vitamin D deficiency is at epidemic proportions in the United States, actually worldwide, “with recent estimates indicating greater than 50% of the global population is at risk. A high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency has been found across all age groups in all populations studied in countries around the globe.”


However, it is far worse among those with darker skin pigmentation, as melanin factors greatly into Vitamin D production.

The sunlight needs for people with darker skin pigmentation, living at higher latitudes, are immense and are not being met. A lighter pigmented person standing in full sun can produce a day’s bodily requirement of Vitamin D in about 15 minutes. In stark contrast, a person with darker skin pigmentation, standing in the same spot, will need approximately 6 times more sun exposure to produce the same amount of vitamin D.


According to reports by the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention, African Americans suffer greatly from chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, fibromyalgia, lupus, and obesity—all of which may be controlled or prevented with vitamin D supplementation.

Unfortunately, many African Americans do not know about the health enhancing properties of vitamin D, so their health continues to deteriorate.  Despite the alarming health situation for blacks, conventional medical practitioners do not seem to be informing African Americans that they may need to take at least 5,000 IU of vitamin D3, in supplement form, every day; and that African American children should also be given adequate amounts of vitamin D3 on a daily basis, because food and drinks do not supply adequate amounts of vitamin D.

It is truly a silent epidemic within the black community.

Dr. John Cannell, an international leader in the field of Vitamin D research, has been educating the public since 2003 on the importance of Vitamin D.  In his role as founder and Executive Director of the Vitamin D Council, Dr. Cannell has repeatedly highlighted the seriousness of Vitamin D deficiency within the African American community.

As far back as 2005, Dr. Cannell wrote specifically on the racial differences in Vitamin D status. His article is included here, as it significantly exposes the enormity of this issue. It is important to realize that 8 years have passed since Dr. Cannell first addressed this Public Health matter, yet little information on the urgency of Vitamin D deficiency has made its way into the African American population.

How many African Americans have developed preventable health conditions due to the medical community’s lack of interest in this subject? How many more will suffer needlessly?

Again, please remember that Dr. Cannell was writing in 2005; and little attempt has been made in the ensuing years to resolve this Public Health issue. This lack of progress, therefore, presents us with unique opportunity to facilitate change.

Opportunity is knocking.  How we choose to answer the call will make the difference between life and death for us, our family members, our friends and colleagues, and for our future generations.

With our involvement the silent epidemic of Vitamin D Deficiency within the African American population can be ended.

For additional information regarding Vitamin D deficiency, please visit www.vitamindcouncil.org. The Vitamin D Council is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, working to educate the public on vitamin D, sun exposure and health.”

Racial differences in vitamin D status

February 12, 2005 by John Cannell, MD

Thomas Edison once said, “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” Politicians in Washington and scientists at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Institute of Medicine (IOM), and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have a rare opportunity, one dressed in the overalls of the advocacy group promoting it and requiring real scientific work to prove (or disprove). However, it may be the scientific, medical, and civil rights opportunity of a lifetime.

Most of us know that African Americans die at a younger age than whites due to a bewildering and seemingly disconnected array of diseases. Even ailments with a lower incidence among blacks, such as breast cancer, have a higher mortality in blacks. Why? Is it all socioeconomic factors? Or is there a near universal medical condition in sunbathingthe black community that is associated with virtually all the diseases that disparately and prematurely kill black Americans? Is there a single substance with a plausible mechanism of action that could parsimoniously explain virtually all the reasons African Americans die prematurely?

In the last four years, a number of studies have documented dramatic racial differences in the blood levels of a crucially important prehormone, 25-hydroxy vitamin D. These studies, when read in the context of clinical studies of vitamin D deficiency, offer scientists and physicians a unique opportunity to examine, and perhaps erase, some of the health inequities burdened by African Americans. Opportunities like these are rare in medical science (and in politics), but government officials, private citizens and the press must first be aware of the studies.

What about you, how aware are you? How many of the following thirteen questions can you answer correctly?

1. Blacks are about ten times more likely to be vitamin D deficient than are whites.

A) true
B) false

The answer is true. Of course, it all depends on how you define vitamin D deficiency but the problem is much more severe in the black community. The reason is simple:
humans get most of their vitamin D from the sun and blacks need up to ten times longer in the sun to produce the same amount of vitamin D as whites1, 2.

2. The incidence of vitamin D deficiency among black women of reproductive age is:

A) twice as high for blacks as whites
B) four times as high
C) ten times as high
D) twenty times as high

The answer is d, twenty times as high. Twelve percent of young black women had 25(OH)D levels below 20nm/L (8 ng/ml) while only 0.5% of whites had such levels3.

3. On the average, young white women of childbearing age have twice as much vitamin D in their blood as young black women.

A) true
B) false

The answer is true4.

4. The following diseases are:

A) associated with vitamin D deficiency.
B) more common among African Americans.
C) both.

• coronary heart disease
• hypertension
• type two diabetes
• colorectal cancer
• prostate cancer
• cervical cancer
• end stage renal disease
• metabolic syndrome
• multiple sclerosis
• rheumatoid conditions
• obesity
• periodontal disease
• rickets
• osteomalacia

The answer is both. With the exception of osteoporosis, the list of diseases associated with vitamin D deficiency and the list of diseases more common among African Americans are virtually identical. Osteoporosis, the exception that proves the rule, is a multifactorial disease whose main determinate is peak bone mass during puberty.

The law of parsimony (one explanation for multiple findings is better than multiple explanations for multiple findings) suggests the high rate of vitamin D deficiency among African Americans explains at least part of excessive disease and mortality among African Americans5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13.
Chronic Disease Epidemiology and Control, American Public Health Association, Second Edition, 1998

5. Vitamin D deficiency in African American mothers may explain the fact that black babies are more than twice as likely as whites to have low-birth-weights.

A) true
B) false

Dr. Kathleen Fuller, of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in Medicine at the University of Kansas School of Medicine was the first to point out this possibility14.

6. Eighty-three percent of American children diagnosed with vitamin D deficient rickets in the last 17 years were African Americans.

A) true
B) false

Again, true15.

7. Professor John McGrath recently documented that vitamin D is crucial for brain development.

A) true
B) false

Again, the answer is true. Low maternal vitamin D caused altered brain shape, reduced expression of nerve growth factors and increased cellular proliferation in the rat fetal brain. We don’t know what role it plays in humans. African Americans are certainly as intelligent as whites but that doesn’t mean all blacks fetuses (or all white fetuses) are in optimal intrauterine environments. However, another way of asking the question is: “Does it seem reasonable that the most potent steroid hormone in the human body may be important for optimal human brain development?”16

8. Breast milk of black women often has undetectable levels of vitamin D. With adequate supplementation, breast milk can easily be transformed into a rich source of vitamin D.

A) true
B) false

True. It is now clear that the reason most breast milk is such a poor source of vitamin D is because most mothers do not have enough vitamin D in their own blood to excrete it in their breast milk. Dr. Bruce Hollis and Dr. Carol breastfeedingWagner recently solved an old and vexing medical question: Why is nature’s perfect food devoid of vitamin D? Answer: Because virtually all modern mothers are vitamin D deficient.

Hollis and Wagner found 4,000 units of cholecalciferol a day transformed vitamin D deficient lactating mothers into vitamin D replete lactating mothers whose breast milk transformed vitamin D deficient infants into vitamin D replete infants. The mothers needed 4,000 units a day, about as much vitamin D as whites get after about 5 minutes of full body summer sun exposure. Black women are much more likely to have undetectable levels of vitamin D in their breast milk than white mothers17, 18.

9. Blacks consume much less fresh milk than do whites

A) true
B) false

True, see below for discussion.

10. Under current FDA regulations, the only foods mandated to contain vitamin D are milk products.

A) true
B) false

The answer is true. Virtually all physicians know that blacks consume much less milk than whites; the most common reason given is that many blacks are lactose intolerant. The FDA delivers most of the vitamin D in supplemented food in the form of milk. I’m not saying, nor do I think, the FDA under the Bush administration continues to purposefully mandate only milk products be supplemented with vitamin D in order to hurt African Americans. I don’t know what Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton or the NAACP would think.

However, the facts are upsetting and the facts are these:

  • African Americans are much more likely to be vitamin D deficient than whites
  • The only two foods the FDA mandates to contain vitamin D are milk products, (fortified nonfat dry milk and evaporated milk),
  • Virtually all the vitamin D in fortified food is delivered via milk,
  • African Americans consume little milk.

Foods which African Americans do consume in equal quantities, such as juice and cereals, may be supplemented with vitamin D but such fortification is not mandatory or widespread. Virtually all the vitamin D delivered to Americans via fortified food is delivered in fresh milk, a product that manufactures choose to fortify with vitamin D – a practice the FDA allows, but does not mandate unless the milk is advertised as vitamin D fortified milk. A recent study sponsored by the National Medical Association indicated blacks could consume more milk but choose not to do so for a variety of reasons. Unfortunately, there is usually no vitamin D in yogurt or cheese, foods African Americans do consume19, 20.

11. The FDA knows that vitamin D deficiency may explain a significant part of the excesses mortality in the black community.

A) true
B) false

True. In 2003, Dr. Mona Calvo, an FDA employee, wrote, “In sharp contrast to their white counterparts, blacks have a much higher incidence and mortality of certain types of aggressive cancers and autoimmune diseases, including diabetes that cannot be attributed entirely to socioeconomic differences or disparities in health care. The strong association between vitamin D insufficiency and risk of chronic diseases should raise concern about the current mechanisms in place to prevent [vitamin D deficiency].”21

12. The FDA also knows blacks do not drink much milk and are not getting as much supplemental vitamin D as whites.

A) true
B) false

True. In 2004, Dr. Calvo warned them again, “The racial/ethnicity groups at greatest risk of vitamin D insufficiency consume less milk . . . than do their white counterparts.” Dr. Calvo went on to say, “African Americans, with the greatest physiological need for dietary sources of vitamin D, have the lowest intake from food alone and food plus supplements.”22

13. When did we discover that vitamin D deficiency is much worse among African Americans and that the FDA’s food fortification program is shortchanging African Americans?

A) over the last twenty years
B) during the last four years.

The answer is b. Virtually all the studies were published in the last four years. That leaves the NIH, the IOM, the FDA, and the Bush Administration with a unique opportunity to right a wrong and, perhaps, do some real good. Opportunities like these are rare in medicine and rarer yet in politics. It may not look like an opportunity to many. After all, isn’t theory too simple and the solution too inexpensive to possibly be true? Mason Cooley once said, “Opportunity knocks, but doesn’t always answer to its name.”

(February 12, 2005 by John Cannell, MD, www.vitamindcouncil.org)



  Author Rita Umile

Vitamin D- Nutrition Series by Caroline Devine

Submitted by Carolyn Devin of Serenity of Body and Mind, CT, USA
The fourth in a series of talks about the importance of vitamins.


Hello everyone! This is the fourth part of my vitamin blog series and today I will be talking about Vitamin D.  Vitamin D is also called the sunshine vitamin but it isn’t actually a “vitamin” at all.  It is actually more accurately described as hormone-like.  When the skin is exposed to adequate UV light it can synthesize vitamin D from a type of cholesterol in the skin.  Many, many people in the United States, especially in the northern states, are deficient in this vitamin.

The best natural food sources of vitamin D are fatty fish such as sardines and salmon.  Cod liver oil was very popular in the 1930s as a supplement because of its high vitamin D content.  Two tablespoons of cod liver oil provide 680% of the daily recommended amount of vitamin D.  Three ounces of tuna provides about 50% and three ounces of salmon is about 150%.  Milk provides the bulk of the United States recommended amount as it is heavily fortified with vitamin D which helps with the processing of calcium.

For Connecticut people to get vitamin D from the sun we would need to be in the sun, unprotected (meaning without any sunblock), for 20 minutes, 4-5 times per week, and it would have to be between the months of March and October.  The rest of the year the sun is not strong enough to produce the vitamin D in the skin so we should be supplementing.  The problem is that many people don’t go in the sun in the summer or are entirely covered in sunblock.  Now I don’t recommend that people should be out in the sun for hours at a time with no sun protection but for a little while every other day will definitely be a health benefit.  And get tested for deficiency by your doctor so you’ll know what your vitamin D status is.

The function of vitamin D in the body is very similar to hormonal regulation.  Vitamin D regulates the body’s concentration of calcium and phosphorus which is extremely important for bone health and maintaining the pH of the blood.  In this society there is a lot of emphasis on calcium and bones but without vitamin D, calcium doesn’t really work as it should.  Calcium and vitamin D go hand in hand which is why milk is a good food for vitamin D fortification.

Vitamin D has also been found to be important in immune functions and cellular metabolism.  Adequate levels of vitamin D can help prevent infection and there are studies that show vitamin D can actually decrease the likelihood of certain diseases such as multiple sclerosis, hypertension, and possibly certain cancers.

Severe vitamin D deficiency in children causes rickets.  When children are growing and developing, calcium and phosphorus are very important to the mineralization of the bones.  When vitamin D levels are low the body cannot regulate the calcium and phosphorus which causes the bones to be weak and brittle.  A common trait of children with rickets is bowed legs, deformed pelvises, and enlarged heads.  Vitamin D deficiency in adults is called osteomalacia and is translated to “soft bones”.  This results in fractures of the hips, spine, and other bones.  This is not the same as osteoporosis as it has more to do with mal-absorption of vitamin D and calcium whereas osteoporosis is actual loss of bone mass.

Vitamin D toxicity can occur with too much supplementation.  It cannot occur with too much sun exposure as the body will self-regulate the amount of vitamin D it will produce.  Excess vitamin D can cause increased calcium in the blood which leads to calcium deposits in the kidneys, heart, and lungs.  Other symptoms are nausea, weakness, joint pain, and disorientation.  In early stages this can be treatable but continued excess supplementation can be fatal.



The Power of Picture Books – Jacqueline Nicoll


Submitted by Jacqueline Nicoll, Canterbury, UK.


There is so much literature available for adult self-development and spiritual growth; wonderful books by many gifted authors that assist us to improve our lives and inspire us to walk our own true path. Have you noticed that there is limited availability of equivalent literature for children?


When my three children were younger I searched for children’s books that reflected my own spiritual understandings and values, knowing that picture books have the power to serve as windows and mirrors for a child’s experience and that of others. As there was, and still is, limited literature to help children understand universal wisdom, I began to write guided visualizations for my own children. I observed how the guided imagery ignited their imagination, helping to reveal their potential through an understanding of their own passions, hopes and dreams. I then re-wrote the visualizations and created picture book stories for like-minded parents and teachers to share with their own children and pupils. A couple of years later, after many rejection letters but an ever hopeful heart, my first manuscript was accepted by a publisher and then later a second one.


Born to love frogs Brumby-1 (Small)Born to Love Frogs’ has been beautifully illustrated by a young award winning Australian artist who was only 18 years old when he was commissioned. The book celebrates children and their gifts and talents. The story honors the unique way each child makes a positive difference to the world.


‘Oceans Calling’ is the underwater adventure of a young girl and a mermaid. Deep beneath the ocean they find a secret which reveals to them the power that love has to heal the water, marine life and ultimately the whole world.


The stories are written for 4 to 9 year olds but are equally enjoyed by tiny tots, teens and adults. Both books offer a holistic experience through interactive activities at the end of the stories which enhance and build upon the themes and sharing experience.


I am a passionate writer and I love inspiring children to enjoy and connect with nature. My own close relationship to nature and my work as a healer and therapist have shown me how important natural outside play is for children for the healthy development of their minds, emotions and bodies. Children are the future caretakers of our beautiful planet and what we teach them about the environment and allow them to experience will help shape the Earth’s future. The books have been created in conjunction with Ecolibris who are an organization dedicated to making reading more sustainable. Over a thousand new trees have been planted for both books. A proportion of the books’ royalties are also donated to charities.

Oceans Calling (Small)

My passion for writing and promoting children’s mind, body and spirit literature has led me to develop interactive workshops which I present to primary schools. They are designed to encourage and inspire children to celebrate their gifts and talents through creative writing, poetry and fun activities.


What began as an outer search for inspiration has led me on an inner journey of self-discovery, vision and creativity. By following my heart and taking action, which are messages contained within the books, I followed my passion for positive change. I am grateful to be involved in and share the joy of other people’s passions and potential; to inspire and be inspired.  This value is embraced in the following quote from ‘Born to Love Frogs,’ “One person makes a difference in all they think, feel and say. One person can show the world a very different way.”


To read more about my work as an author, healer and therapist, please see www.jacquelinenicoll.com

Books on Amazon


Statistics on Women Who Lead



Submitted by Logan Harper, North Carolina, USA


Women today are making professional strides at an unprecedented level. They are more visible in top posts across the career spectrum – from Yahoo! CEO Marissa Meyer to outgoing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Women are starting businesses at 1.5 times the national average, a 20 percent increase over the last decade. Women are also pursuing higher education in record numbers; women now hold more bachelors and graduate degrees than men.

There is still a disparity in earnings and leadership titles across genders, but there are more outspoken advocates of professional women than ever before. Notable leaders like Arianna Huffington, Sheryl Sandberg, Rachel Sklar, and Sarah Blakely help fuel this conversation in the media and champion for the advancement of women everywhere.

Check out this infographic from UNC-Chapel Hill’s Online MBA Program, MBA@UNC, to learn more from these women who lead:


Women at Work Infographic Via MBA@UNC
Via MBA@UNC: Top MBA Online & Women 2.0

About the Author

loganLogan Harper is the community manager for MPA@UNC, a top Masters of Public Administration program offered through UNC-Chapel Hill, as well as a contributor to the Online MPA Degrees. In addition to higher education, Logan is also passionate about travel, cooking, and public service.

Darlene Theodore – The Influence of Patrick


If we listen, our children tell us things that we need to know and help us understand the things we should do.  They can awaken a duty within us to help not just them and ourselves, but others.  Darlene Theodore is the Director of Training and Development at Patrick’s Academy, Inc.  She is not only the director, but is also the owner.  She was inspired by her son.  We spoke to her briefly about her schools.


You own a school. It’s a brick and mortar school and an on-line institution. What made you decide to open up your own school?

Patrick’s Academy, Inc. is a 501 (c) (3). It is governed by a Board of Directors. There is no owner. I am the Founder of Patrick’s Academy, Inc. I have a gift for teaching people to become better skilled and more productive. We offer onsite and distance learning classes.

What is the focus of the training that you provide?darlene-theodore-patrick
For the children, our focus is supplementing their existing curricular.
For the adults, our focus is to get them certified in primarily IT occupations.

What do students gain from attending? — why would someone want to go to St. Patrick’s Academy?

Learners attend Patrick’s Academy, Inc. because they believe that we can help them. The parents of children with autism see progress in their children and gain an understanding of how best to support and help their child to develop socially, and mentally.

Adults attend Patrick’s Academy, Inc. because we have a success rate of 85% in helping people to get placed into full time employment. We are also successful in helping them to achieve certification.

The name – St. Patrick’s Academy – how did you derive the name? Does it have any special significance?
My youngest son’s name is Patrick.

Who do you serve? Are your students from just a few states or can your service anyone who is looking for certification?
Mostly locally within CT.

How did you establish your physical locations? Are you located inside of other schools?
We lease our locations.

Usually when someone creates a venue to benefit the autistic, it’s usually because someone close to them has autism. Is this why you established St. Patrick’s ?
Yes. My son Patrick was diagnosed with Autism at age 2.

How did you decide what kind of programs and training to provide for the students?
For the children, we collaborate with the public school system personnel and parents.
For the adults, our staff earned the certifications, and researched high demand occupations.

Is this training done exclusively on-line?

Do your students find value in what you offer?

If someone wants more information about either school, who should they contact?
They can call me directly at (860) 754-4263




Rosalind Bouverie – A Life Long Artist Returns to School to Get A Degree

Rosalind with her granddaughter


When do you know you were an artist?  Was it when you were a young child, or did you discover your talent later in life?

 As far back as I can remember being a small child, I was always drawn towards colour, shapes, patterns and a great urge to always play around with crayons and anything around the house to make a decorative  mess with. My earliest memory of starting school, on the first day, was a large tub of brightly coloured crayons, with which I apparently decorated the walls and floors of the classroom! So I guess the artist in me has always been there.


How did you get started with art?  Was there a teacher, or someone recognized your skill at home?

 Art was my favorite lesson at school. It was all I looked forward to, right through from kindergarten (I spent my early childhood in Germany) right through to Secondary school. I went to many schools as my parents were stationed all over the place in R.A.F. Camps. Mostly, all the teachers I had recognized my creative ‘need’ and love of colour.  My of parents picked up on it, and encouraged me to draw and paint.


Recognizing that your medium is painting, do you do art in other forms?

Painting is my biggest love of expression in my creative profession.  Although I have dabbled with many materials and process’s, including: printing (many different kinds)  Lino cuts, sculpture, (clay and glass), collage, batik, (dying fabric and stitching beads and feathers), photography-which is often crucial to assist picture making, or for reference, generally, I have had many failures, and few success’s from all these experiments. Most art courses have a set plan of different techniques to ‘taste’ in case you may find that you flourish in a specific type of creativity-but I always knew that I would be a painter. Collage is the only other process that I sometimes return to.


What kind of training do you have?

Training is probably not the right word here. I would call it Guidance (as a school kid) and later on, perhaps, academic teaching ‘methods’. I took art classes after school, more like a club, where we were left to our own devices and had a lot of fun. Because I missed out on going onto art college after leaving school (my father was totally against the idea, it was the 60’s-too many hippy’s and political stuff going on) I pretty much taught myself and arrived at oil painting using a palette knife after watching Nancy kominsky’s tv program -I had immense fun, and churned out loads of paintings. Much later on in life, after marrying and having a family-I returned to studying A level art, at the age of 34. I did not do very well with my grade, so took it again 2 years later. I regarded my art practice as just a hobby after that, fitting it around bringing up a family and working. I participated in many adult education classes-just to go somewhere to paint-for several years. Then, 5 years ago, I heard about Ashford School of art and design, and decided to start at the bottom, and work my way up. I began with the ABC in fine art course, which led up to HND fine art, and then finally, BA(Hons). So, I have 2 A levels, and 2 certificates, and a degree.

What do you feel your accomplishments have been in all of these years?

Rosalind Wins A Competition

My ‘accomplishments’ I would say are many commissions for friends and family, several exhibitions in Ashford, competitions for various art magazines, to have gained a few certificates, to exhibit in major art shows for Ashford school of art and design (4 in all), to achieve a BA (Hons) Degree, and to have a painting chosen to be displayed in a gallery (for sale) in Ashford. But I also feel that I have accomplished an insight into the professional side of being a working artist, overcome obstacles, through experimentation, trials and errors, failures and success’s, learned how to be self critical, and gained a lot of knowledge on contemporary art theory, history of art (the lectures were so engaging) and an opportunity to realize my vision.


What is in it for you?  What about art is so important to you?

As you are aware, and I am aware, my inspiration for the core of my artwork comes from the natural world. For me, being creative is an ongoing artistic ‘journey’ that I never want to end. The ‘importance’ lies in the desire to convey my personal response to the beauty within landscape and nature. It is like an ongoing journey of a learning process and discovery. Expressing myself in this painterley way, is a release of emotions-a place where I can feel ‘free’, and it keeps me ‘focused’. It is very close to my heart, so art is very important to me for those reasons. I would go so far to say that it is inspired by love.


Why did you decide to go back to school as an older adult to get a degree?  What drove you to do that?

Going back to college to study was a hard decision. I almost never did! My son encouraged me to do it, as my work had come to an end, I was signed off sick with my bad back, I was bored at home in the daytime (housework was getting me down), and I always felt that I had it in me to take my art just that little bit further. Plus the colleges were crying out for mature students to fill the spaces, and the fact that you could get a loan to assist you, was tempting. I felt that I needed to take up art more seriously, I had a thirst for more knowledge, I knew I was stuck in a rut painting at home, and thought it would be great to have a studio space to spread my wings in. Plus, it was a challenge! I also wanted to learn more about the art profession.


Where there other adults in the classes that you attended, or was it mostly young people?

I was totally surprised to find that the group I was in had an age range from 18 to 69, so I felt like I was ‘in the middle’ at 52/3! There must have been at least half of us over 45 years. I think we all had the same idea.


What was your college experience like for you?

My experience was one of mixed emotions, daunting at first, exciting, nerve-wracking, because of the deadlines for handing in work, shock factor with the colossal amount of paper work involved electronically-I may add-which meant that I had to learn how to use a computer-fast, and also buy one! Overall, I loved the creative side in the studio, loosing myself in my work, in my own studio space. There were ups and downs, events for fundraising that were so time consuming and ridiculous, lots of lectures (which you had to attend). I hated anything that took away the painting time. lectures were  very interesting, but too long. I often used to fall asleep during these! The pressure was very demanding and caused lots of late nights-stress, family squabbles, etc.  (That part I am glad is behind me.)  Looking back I am glad I have it behind me, and would not take anything up quite so grueling. But, the opportunity to push yourself artistically, and achieve great things-cannot be ignored. I was just  ill prepared for it!


I am a big believer that people are what they do.  What would it mean to you if you could not paint?

I just can’t imagine what it would be like not to paint! As I have always done so. I guess if I didn’t paint, then I would be doing something else. There always has to be’ something’ other than the mundane for everyone. Having had a taste of not being creative for a while due to my injury recently, it is like something has been stolen from me. I am not happy if I can’t do the thing I love!

What are your plans for your artwork now?

I do not have any great plans right now for my artwork, because of my circumstances-but I am hoping to ease myself back into painting. I intend to do a series of nature based pond paintings on small canvases, and then approach the new galleries in our Town. I also have a few commissions to finish. I am taking each day as it comes, and working on getting better and stronger. I hope to create a space in the house where I can set up an easel and working area-so I have a permanent place to paint. At the moment, I am working on sketches for future work, and have gone back to portraiture-so I am in the sketchpad. It really is an ongoing ‘journey.’


Rosalind lives in England with her husband and two sons.  She has four children and several grandchildren.


Особая благодарность njuta для создания этого красивого видео!

Special thanks to Njuta for creating this beautiful video!