Yesterday was part one of this discussion. Hopefully not too many toes were stepped on. For those who felt offended or slighted in any way, look within to see why my observations bothered you so deeply.

Are they not accurate?

I would be interested in furthering our dialogue to examine any points that I made and why you disagree, in whole or in part. Feel free to post your comments below.

Today we begin with part two, which delves into the offspring and legacy of our male-female relationships. Today I will speak to and with the men. Ladies don’t get all high and mighty. Tomorrow, we will have a heart-to-heart.

To the men. To my brothers. I say…

black fathers matter

Stop Being Baby Daddies

Fellas, I understand that sometimes this is the title that you have been designated by a woman who is hurt and angry about something you did and did not do, and so now you’re just the “baby daddy” in her mind.

You can’t control her mind but you can control yours, and your words and actions, and how you interact with your child.

You have a choice to be a father or a baby daddy.

You make the choice to be involved in your child’s precious upbringing or to be a deadbeat.

Let’s “keep it real” Shall We?

You made the decision to have sex with this woman, understanding the potential consequences of your actions. She was good enough to risk conceiving a child with (and please don’t say you didn’t know the risks of having sex), so now you need to do whatever (positively, ethically, and legally) it takes to positively co-parent with her.

Don’t let her foolishness sidetrack and deter you. If you want to have a healthy relationship with your child then do your part to legally and ethically be there in every way possible for your child.

Don’t let her use sex to move the “pawn” (your child) on this “chess board” and don’t you do it either.

Don’t manipulate this relationship with money, through offering or withholding it.

What you do in these instances of using sex and money to see your child is create an environment where you both are participating in pimping and pandering.

It sounds sick doesn’t it? That’s because it is.

If after great effort a woman won’t let you see your child then take her to court and legally fight for your right. But whatever you do, don’t get ugly with her. Let the court see her trickery. When you lower yourself the eyes of the law grow to despise you. The law expects more from you because you are a man, so when you begin acting like a child, doing tit-for-tat with the mother of your child, the court punishes you. Why put yourself through that madness?

Get Your Money In Order For Your Child

If this has been an ongoing battle, make sure that you have already established an account with a bank or credit union where you have been saving money for your child. This money can be used to pay for their daily needs, future needs, or both. It also shows good faith to the judge that you can and are willing to financially provide for the wellbeing of your child and that you have funds designated especially for your child’s needs. It can also grow and expand to be an extracurricular or education fund for your child. It can be an emergency fund for them.

Whatever purpose it serves make sure it’s clearly defined. You’re not obligated to do it, but you should. Your child’s needs should be factored into your personal budget. No one needs to know how much you deposit in the account. A judge may inquire, but no one else needs to be privy. It’s your account for your child.

Create a Nurturing Environment For Your Child

You also need to show that you have a safe and healthy environment for your child to spend quality time with you. Where will your child be sleeping, playing, and learning at your home? Who else lives there? Who visits your home on a regular basis?

Don’t have your child around a bunch of people that don’t make up the village who are sworn to protect your child. So that includes the women you are casually dating, as well as any men you wouldn’t bring to your own mother’s or grandmother’s home. If you wouldn’t bring someone over to your mother’s or grandmother’s home then keep them away from your child. Why leave the wrong impressions on their minds?

It’s simple. Be the father and the man that you say that you are. I’m not saying that a judge will rule in your favor all or most of the time, or at any time—but it’s not about the judge. It’s about you and your child. It’s a pact that you formed the moment that you knew you were a dad, that even through the obstacles, you did what was necessary for your child.

That means child support shouldn’t be something that has to be dragged from your fingers.

No One Should Have to Force You to Be a Father and Provider

Before that even becomes a piece that your child’s mother moves on the chess board, you need to step up and already begin supplying diapers, formula, wipes and other supplies, clothing, furnishings, equipment, and other things that you know your child needs. If you have money for overpriced shoes, smart phones, tickets to your favorite event, to buy the newest video game, or whatever else tickles your fancy—then you have money to set aside to provide for your child. Provide as though the child lives under the same roof as you.

Don’t Punish Her

Don’t punish your child through its mother. Yes, that’s what you do when you withhold and ration money to the mother of your child. That’s what you do when you have women coming and going from your life like a parade, and each one has spent time leaving impressions on your child’s mind—and then you arrogantly throw your “conquests” in the face of your child’s mother.

Hurting her hurts your child. Don’t forget, your child was formed and nurtured inside of her for nine months (on average). They have a bond like nothing you can imagine.

So that also means, don’t try and be vindictive and sue for full custody of your child. Snatching your child away from their mother will have an impact that you never want to experience.

Hurting her hurts your child. Hurting them hurts you.

Control The Flow of Your Money in a Productive and Healthy Way

If you’re concerned with how she’s spending the money that you normally give her for diapers, clothes, etc. then invest the time and money in shopping online for everything your child needs, have it shipped to their home, and then any actual money that you provide to the mother will cover incidentals that you did not allocate for in your budget.

What do I mean by this?

That means if you spend $300 for incidentals online and have those items shipped to her and then you give her $200 in cash (with a signed receipt), is that still not $500 that you invested in your child’s wellbeing? You can even go so far as provide her with a gas card that has reloadable funds available, so she’s not spending money that can go towards rent and utilities on things like that.

Honestly, you should consider doing this even if you aren’t concerned with how she’s spending the money. You actually save her time trying to shop in-store or online with your child in-tow, who of course is constantly needing attention and care. By you shopping online you save both of you from a headache. Most online stores keep track of your previous orders so reordering is fairly easy; and some even have auto-ship options that allows you to schedule shipments to automatically be shipped at a specific period of time, and your card on file is charged once shipment is complete. This can be a great option, and it makes budgeting and bookkeeping easier because you have proof of where and how much money was spent, and on what items.

Why did I say to have it shipped rather than you delivering it personally?

It’s simple. It reduces possible conflict, especially if your relationship with mom is fueled by conflict rather than mutual respect. Additionally, shipping saves you time. You have a job and other responsibilities, it’s about time and money management—it’s about being efficient and effective.

The steps and ideas outlined above are some of the things you can do long before courts get involved. If you’re already financially, emotionally, and physically taking care of your child then any claims the mother has will carry less weight. But you can also implement these steps even after judicial intervention.

Your Primary Concern

What the judge and everyone else will see and know is that you are not a baby daddy, you are a father; you are not a deadbeat, you are a father. A father who is no longer in an intimate relationship with the mother, but is focused on doing his part to help raise a healthy well-rounded child.

Your primary concern and focus should be your child. To do so you must be respectful to the mother of your child, even if she’s being disrespectful to you. Don’t allow her foolishness to impact the relationship that you are trying to have with your child, your heir, the one who will carry on your legacy. Continue to do your job, keeping your word, making sure that you stay informed about your child’s health and wellness, and their education and social upbringing. At the same time, making sure that you respect the mother of your child and her home.

Yeah let’s talk about that real quick, shall we?

What Co-Parenting is. And What It is Not.

Fellas I need you. No. Correction. You need for you to stop thinking that you are still a couple and that you “run things” as it relates and pertains to this woman who is no longer your girlfriend or wife.

Just like she shouldn’t be dictating to you who you date or marry you shouldn’t try to dictate, control, and determine who she dates or marries. The two of you should respectfully discuss how starting and blending these relationships should take place, when your child should be introduced to a potential mate, and how their parents (you and her) will address concerns such as disciplining, caregiving (babysitting), emergency situations (where one or both parent is not available), and other things that you agree are of importance.

This is a conversation that needs to happen early and frequently throughout the growth stages of your child. Not once one of you becomes involved in a relationship. No. No. No. That’s when fireworks start flying everywhere and tempers flare. That’s when the hurt person hurts the other person, and your child is ultimately hurt.

Remember, the number one priority is the health and wellbeing of your child.

I Know She Can Be “Crazy”

Now I know about the belligerent, out-of-control “baby mama” who flaps her gums and bad mouths you as though you’re the seed of satan. I’ve seen them. I’ve heard them. She’s so mad at you for whatever you did to her, real or imagined, and now all she sees is red, and all she wants to do is hurt you in every possible way that she can. The fastest and deepest way to hurt you is through your child and the second way is through your wallet.

Now hopefully some of the suggestions that I mentioned above help to resolve the “through your wallet” dilemma that you hyperventilate over. As far as “through your child” goes—I know that pain. I’ve witnessed and consoled the father who painfully watches as the mother of his child works tirelessly to turn that child against him. It tears at your heart and soul, it bashes in your spirit and your hope.

I know that what I’m about to say you have probably already heard countless times, but I’m going to say it again because I’ve seen this play out full-circle numerous times. I’ve seen what happens when you trust in God, in the Universe to handle those things that you can’t. I’ve seen how by doing what is right as a man and father, by doing all that you can to provide for your child, that child eventually sees the truth and they ultimately cling to you.

Something Your Child Will Cherish Forever

Start writing your child letters now, make a copy of the letter (I would even make a copy of the stamped envelope), and mail the original to your child. I don’t care how old they are. Send those letters. Keep the copies in a folder, envelope, box or whatever. It doesn’t matter how long or how short the letters are. It doesn’t matter what you say in them. Speak to your child through a letter, as though you’re only apart because you’re away on an extended business trip. Tell them how much you love them. Tell them how proud you are. Tell them about how excited you were to see their achievements.

When they are older and you’re given the opportunity, hand them the letters. If their mother is a true mother (and hasn’t transformed to “Mamazilla”), then she shared these letters with your child. If not, you now have the time to share months and years of letters with your child.

Don’t scoff or roll your eyes when you read this. Nothing is more powerful than the expression of love.

It doesn’t matter what the mother says and does, your child will grow up to learn and know the truth and when that time comes your child will cherish everything that you did for them, and will learn from your actions on how to be the best parent they can be with the hand that is dealt to them.

You Are The Example. Set It.

Let them see from you what it means to be a man, father, dad, and parent.

No, you didn’t stay with their mom. You didn’t keep the three of you together as one family unit. But you did everything that you could to make sure that they had all that you could provide, with the resources that you had at your disposal.

Don’t listen to your “boys” and others who would convince you to lower yourself to baby daddy or deadbeat status. None of those people have a legacy to consider tied to that child you helped to conceive. Your child could grow up to be a successful entrepreneur, scientist, engineer, educator, author, chef, architect, designer, mogul, entertainer, athlete, or politician.

All of those people who tried to convince you to do the bare minimum or nothing at all for your child, will be the first lining up with their hands of expectation stretched outward—looking for the “hook up” from your now-successful child. But your child will look at them and look at you, and based on your role in their upbringing they will determine how best to treat you now that they have reached a level of success.

You determine the kind (and quality) of relationship that you will have with your child.

I love you my brothers.

~Natasha

Copyright 2018. Natasha Foreman Bryant/Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

On March 20th my Storiboard Nation business partner, Markeith Wood, turned a year older and wiser.

How old is he?

Well he’s been a rebel around these parts for 23 years plus an additional 20-plus plus plus more. I will leave it at that 😆

His mind and spirit is still as sharp determined, and energized as any 23-year-old I’ve ever known—and so I hope that he celebrates accordingly this week, this month, and this year.

Check him out in 2016 showing the youngsters and the “old heads” how he flows.

View this post on Instagram

#sogonechallenge # Markeith73

A post shared by Markeith Wood (@markeith73) on

If you’re on IG or Twitter be sure to follow him and wish him a happy birthday at @Markeith73

If you live in Virginia or will be stopping through, be sure to support his project, Sole Xpressions, that he is collaborating on with some powerhouse movers and shakers, as they focus on empowering and inspiring our younger generations. They have an event tomorrow and will have more lined up.

Happy birthday man! ✌🏽

~Natasha

If you recall one of my earlier posts I shared with you that my friend and colleague, Steve Woodsmall is running for Congress in 2018. He’s a progressive who wants to represent the great state of North Carolina and flip the 11th District.

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As Major Woodsmall, Steve served as a commander, executive officer, and management consultant in the Air Force, and was selected as a flight commander at Officer Training School to train and develop future leaders. He also worked as a government contractor for the Federal Aviation Administration and the Securities and Exchange Commission. Steve previously served as a director in the corporate arena and managed a not-for-profit organization.

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Steve holds a PhD in Organization & Management, and a Master’s degree in Business Administration.

He currently teaches leadership and management at Brevard College in Brevard, NC, and is a current member of the Transylvania County Planning Board. Steve was third vice-chair of the Transylvania Co Democrats (but is inactive now due to running for congress).

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Platform Issues

Steve has some sound solutions and views on:

  • Gun Regulation
  • Campaign Finance
  • Social Security
  • Job Creation
  • Immigration
  • Healthcare
  • Infrastructure
  • Reproductive Rights
  • Cannabis
  • Voting Rights, and the
  • Environment

More About Steve

Steve believes “in a progressive minded, solution based approach to politics, and always puts the constituent first” because as a public servant he knows that he works for the people, and not the other way around.

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To learn more about Steve and his ideas for positive change in North Carolina and throughout our great nation, please visit his site: https://woodsmallforcongress2018.org/

Meet Steve

To meet Steve and/or hear him speak at a local convention, forum or other event in North Carolina, be sure to visit his events page to see what Steve has on his calendar for the next several weeks: https://woodsmallforcongress2018.org/events

I can tell you now that on March 24th he will be at events in Waynesville, Sylva, and Valdese. On the 26th he will be at two events in Brevard and Cherokee. On the 27th he will be at a forum in Sylva and on the 28th he will be at an event for the West Asheville Democrats in Asheville. Check his calendar for specific details and to see what he has planned for the month of April.

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How to Support Steve

There are four ways that you can support Steve’s campaign for Congress:

  • Vote for him: 
    • The Democratic Primary is May 8, 2018
      • Early voting begins Tuesday, April 19, 2018
    • Vote for him again on November 6, 2018
  • Volunteer on his campaign
  • Host an Event in Western North Carolina
  • Contribute to his campaign- visit here for details

I know that Steve will appreciate any level of support that you provide, no matter which option that you choose.

Be sure to follow him on:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SteveWoodsmall   Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WoodsmallforCongress2018/ 

The only way to truly bring positive change is to vote out those who are holding us back and keeping us down (leaching on the system from within) and vote in those who will work tirelessly on our behalf, so that our voices are not only heard but the power from those voices are then amplified, and bring about genuine action through reform, bills, and other mechanisms.

~Natasha

The time is NOW! Don’t wait. Don’t procrastinate. You’re only stealing from yourself when you do. Seriously.

Yes, I’m talking about the new book Believe Bigger: Discover Your Path to Your Life Purpose

Invest in this book, this guide, this map to explore sides and crevices of YOU that you have overlooked, neglected, abused, misused, underutilized—yet you want to RECLAIM, RESTORE, RENEW, REINVENT, RECHARGE, REACTIVATE and REALIGN.

Get your copy of #BelieveBigger by my dear friend Marshawn Evans Daniels if you want to do more, see more, experience more, give more, receive more, and be more.

Abundance of anything positive can ONLY come from faith, discipline, and action.

You have to DO. You have to MOVE. You have to GET UP and GET OUT OF YOUR WAY, THE WAY, GOD’S WAY.

It starts by thinking abundantly, feeling it, visualizing it, speaking it, and believing it LONG BEFORE you see the first buds sprout, long before the first harvest becomes ready.

To #BelieveBigger you have to have FAITH in what you hope for, in that which has yet to arrive—but you have already staked your claim as YOURS!

Health, financial wealth, intelligence, a fulfilling and rewarding career, work-life balance, to travel more, marriage, or to start a family of your own—whatever it is—YOU MUST CLAIM IT AS SO—CLAIM IT AS YOURS, and then do your part to make the puzzle pieces come together.

God has already shown you what is possible. He’s already said it can be yours. But do YOU believe in His vision for you? Or will you settle on the small—lower your expectations below what He wants to gift you? Will you let fear tell you it’s not possible or will you let faith tell you “Oh yes it is!

Every successful entrepreneur knows that their forward-thinking vision must be stated, shared, and reinforced constantly and consistently in order for that vision to be fully comprehended and embraced; and the more that the vision is shared and embraced the more energy and passion is poured into making sure that vision becomes a reality. That’s the difference from merely being a dreamer and a doer. It’s seeing where you want to go and putting together the resources, and doing the job to achieve what you desire.

In organizations we focus on two primary drivers (besides our triple bottom line) which are Mission and Vision. A mission is your purpose—why you’re in business, why you do what you do. Your vision states where you want to go, what you want to be, what type of impact that you want to have as an organization.

Those same principles need to be taught and embedded in the mindset of individuals, not just business leaders. It’s not necessarily tied to your profession or you finding the cure for cancer (side note: but if you do please make sure that you keep those costs affordable for all).

Vision-tied-to-Purpose-aka-Mission….

What is your purpose in life? What is your purpose in your neighborhood or community? What is your purpose in your house of worship? What is your purpose as a member of your family? Why do you get up out of bed every day? Why do you keep living? Why do you want to keep living? Purpose is so bold and deep, so scary, so what if you swap the word and said “mission”, does it help? Probably not. Because purpose, mission, and vision, no matter what you want to call them they are all bold and dynamic, and anything worth achieving is a scary proposition. But if it doesn’t scare you a little or a lot then it’s not big enough, it’s not bold enough. You need to BELIEVE BIGGER!

A lot of people are suffering in their career and in their home life because they lack vision, and their hope is dwindling and dying a slow and painful death. They are focused on their present, their lack of, rather than on where they could be in the near or distant future. When you’re blinded by what you don’t have you don’t see the opportunities opening up around you and ahead of you. You walk right by them or you stop short of achieving them. You need to grab a defibrillator, also known as an AED, and you need to resuscitate your hope and vision.

Stop relying upon New Year’s Resolutions and start with (and be fueled by) vision and action plans. Resolutions are what we aspire to resolve to one day do, but we have become so casual and relaxed with them that we rarely achieve a quarter of the things on the list, and most of the things we aspired to achieve we fell short by January 15th of the year and never tried again.

An action plan fueled by a vision is our road map to GET IT DONE!

Some of you have fulfilled one mission in life and now you’re wondering, “what next?” well maybe, just maybe, Marshawn’s book can help you answer that question.

If you’re ready for that next level, of whatever it is and wherever it may be, then you need to get your copy of Believe Bigger at BelieveBigger.com or at any retailer that sells books, so that you can get moving and start claiming what’s waiting out there for you!

~Natasha

Copyright 2018. Natasha Foreman Bryant/Natasha L. Foreman.
All images within this post have a copyright protection enforced by Marshawn Evans Daniels.

I strongly recommend that you watch the NetFlix docu-series “Rotten“. Each episode addresses issues that should concern you, if you’re informed enough to understand the reason for concern.

Do you know where your food comes from?

Do you know what chemicals, antibiotics, and additives have been sprayed on or injected or mixed in your food?

Do you know if a local or overseas farmer grew and harvested your food, or if a prison inmate played a role?

Do you know the environment and health of the animals that you cook, plate and serve to your family?

Do you know how much farmers are earning on the food that you eat, compared to how much the large corporations that distribute and “bring to market” that same food?

Do you know why the rate of food allergies has skyrocketed over the last 20 years?

Do you know that avoidance of food may be increasing the rates of food allergies, and now scientists are strongly encouraging consumers to eat the peanuts, eggs, tree nuts, seafood, etc to reduce and possibly eliminate those allergies?

Do you know where your beloved garlic is coming from? It may say “a product of the US” when it actually came from China, and if already pre-peeled, it could have been peeled by Chinese prison inmates.

Did you know that although the US allows local prisons to use inmate labor to produce, assemble, and package goods (including your food) here, yet it refuses to accept imported food that was raised, grown, prepped, or packaged by foreign prison inmates? Same unethical practice, yet it’s like the hypocritical saying, “do as I say, not as I do“. So small local farmers in China and small local farmers in the United States are forced to compete with huge corporations who can outpace and outperform them.

Did you know that the honey you love, on and in just about everything, may not even be honey? It may very well be a syrup that is modified to resemble honey.

Did you know that a huge supply of our honey comes from China, squeezing out local beekeepers and fattening the pockets of large corporations that want to meet demand with supply—and with the US being the highest demand market, these corporations are cutting corners to make you think that it is actually honey that you pour in your tea, spread on your toast or biscuit, slather on your ham, or drizzle on whatever you can think of—when actually it is not.

Did you know that traditional dairy farmers are disappearing by the dozens? Many who are still around usually have one or more key players working an off-site job in order to pay household bills and help the farm cover operations costs.

Did you know that selling raw milk (straight from the cow not processed and pasteurized) is illegal in 15 US states and illegal to sell across state lines?

Yet some farmers continue to sell raw milk even though scientists show through research that the bacteria in raw milk causes illnesses and death. However, there is a growing demand for raw milk as the bacteria our bodies lost due to trying to eat and drink “cleaner”, is the bacteria in raw milk that can aide in healthier living. There are hundreds of people who claim that raw milk reduces and prevents allergies and ear infections. Many argue that you can’t compare raw milk production of the 1800s to the production from today’s raw milk farmers.

Those who have gotten sick and the family members of those who have died from raw milk consumption, would argue otherwise.

This will of course be an ongoing debate.

Why are farmers being forced to pay high costs to be certified “organic”, when we know the positive impact on humankind? Why do consumers have to pay a premium for “organic” but can get low-quality for cheap?

Do you know if the fish and seafood that you are eating is really what it says on the label?

Do you know if it is fresh or if it has been frozen, thawed, and refrozen upwards of 6 times before you purchase and take it to your home?

Do you know if the fish and seafood that you’re eating was farm-raised or caught in the wild? Do you know if it’s from domestic or foreign waters?

Sadly, for most of us we will never know. Because unless you go directly to the docks and pick your fish and seafood directly from the fisherman’s wharf or boat, you end up with a lot of unknowns.

Here’s the trailer to the documentary just in case you want a sneak peek…or in case my words aren’t enough motivation:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=_ot6W_7hvrM

With various industries, such as garlic, being self-regulated not government-regulated, corruption is hard to fight. Then again, with some politicians and governments accepting bribes from corporations, even government-regulated industries and markets are plagued by corruption.

Everyone needs training and career-long development in ETHICS! We should be doing what’s right not just what’s profitable, because when your focus is on the former the latter will happen.

Greed has destabilized and pimped our food industries, and the consumers are the victims. Small domestic and foreign farmers are victims, as they can’t fairly compete with large domestic and multinational corporations.

Watch the Netflix series “Rotten“, educate yourself, and encourage others to do the same. Knowledge and use of that knowledge is power.

~Natasha

This month let’s connect and see how my team and I can help your new or seasoned business.

At Foreman & Associates, LLC we specialize in management consulting, individual and team training, and business support services—you can outsource work to us or we can help your team setup your systems of success.

Companies call on us for large and small projects, operations and management overhauls, full-cycle recruiting, and to coach owners and executives to be more efficacious leaders.

Visit FOREMANLLC.COM for more details. Let’s make some moves together so that it can be our best year ever!

~Natasha

For those of you who know I have more than a 20-year history within the music industry. I’ve taken a few breaks and realigned my focus, but I’ve never fully detached myself from the amazing world of music.

I love supporting the creative, especially the up-and-coming artists who are so vibrant, hopeful, and determined.

Several weeks ago I had the privilege of listening to a local singer, songwriter, and musician by the name of Takiya. Her manager, Juanita Bryan, is also a friend of mine, so I reached out to her and told her to let me know anytime that this young lady performs and in any way that I may be helpful. Today I was notified about an upcoming performance.

If you will be in Atlanta this Friday, January 12, please join us at the Mandarin Oriental Atlanta at 8:30 PM where Takiya will be performing some original tracks and covers. This is a free performance. There is a $15 valet fee, if you drive to the hotel. Bring a friend and share this announcement. Thank you.

I’ve been divorced for 9 months.

Most of you are shocked to read those words. But they are true no matter how many times you re-read them.

This message has been sitting as a draft on my phone for six months. I wasn’t ready to share this at that time. I thought I could three months ago, but I still wasn’t ready. I made the decision that I would share in December. Symbolic for many reasons. Year-end, holiday cheer, families together, and because I hoped that this December would feel and be better than last year.

So today I share the life-altering news with all of you—family, friends, associates, students, and strangers.

No, I will not share details.

I didn’t share intimate details of our courtship, engagement, wedding, and married life. I didn’t even rush to let people know I was dating, engaged, or married. That’s because I value and wanted privacy. I wanted to protect my man, my life, and what we had together. I didn’t want a bunch of folks all in our “mix” because I know that there are twice as many people hating on you than loving you. So I did my best to protect one of the most valuable relationships I had second to my relationship with God.

You got a highlight reel of my life. So guess what?

I won’t be sharing details about how we got to this point. Because plain and simply, it’s my life, and I value and want privacy.

No, I won’t feed your need to gossip at my expense. Even though some of you will most likely materialize your own content to feed upon. *smile*

We do like “tea” don’t we?

You can ponder and speculate but the end result will remain the same…

What once was is no longer.

I’m only making this statement because I’m frequently receiving emails and comments on my websites, messages through social media, and being approached in public by people who joyfully praise me, him, and us. People make comments about “#MarriageGoals” and I slightly cringe because they haven’t a clue.

Countless times this year I’ve spoken with people who have expressed a level of pride from looking at my marriage, the image that was publicly portrayed and lived, and seeing us over the years at various events. I’ve had people contact me to let me know that they pray for our marriage and the work that we do in the community. I couldn’t bring myself to tell these strangers, “thanks but he’s my ex husband now“. So I always find discreet ways to thank them for their kind and loving words and prayers, and then I leave the rest alone.

I’ve discreetly removed myself from so much but clearly it hasn’t been enough. My absence hasn’t made clear my current status, it’s only made me less visible. People assume they don’t see me somewhere because I’m busy.

There’s so much content of us online that all online searches express and imply the same “message”–that we’re still this visionary powerhouse couple. When the truth is, we used to be but now we are merely two visionary, powerhouse individuals focused on our own separate missions. We are on separate paths. We are no longer a couple. There is no “we”. We can’t erase or rewrite our past, and why would we? It was ours and we lived it boldly and I have no regrets. At the same time we must move forward to what is now the present.

I will not clarify what is most clear. The first sentence of this post can’t get any clearer.

Many who know us personally, professionally, or indirectly through our very public work are or will be shocked by this admission. But just as everything else in life, this too you will get over, get past, and it will soon become a distant memory that resurfaces in random moments and even more random online searches.

But your life will go on, move forward, unscathed, uninterrupted, unbothered—and for those and other more important reasons, I ask that you refrain from further inquiry. There’s no need to dig for what is already at surface level.

If you know me and didn’t already know this big shocker then you should be able to answer your own question as to why you didn’t know my reality months ago.

No offense. I’m good. Really I am. I’m strong. I’ve “got this”—well, God has this and I’m rolling with Him.

Thank you. I love you.

All I want and need right now is peace and the clear space to hear and act on what God is calling me to move forward on. I want to be free to embrace the opportunities that come my way. God has huge things planned for me and I can’t waste His time or mine, because He’s not giving me forever to get these things accomplished.

Please respect me, respect my former husband, respect what once was, and respect what God has planned for our individual and separate futures. Our union is no longer. A seven-year history has ended. Lessons learned, experiences shared, milestones reached, and excellence attained. We built some amazing ideas into real masterpieces.

I’m honored to have served in many roles through Operation HOPE. I’m proud of the work I accomplished, the tireless commitment and sacrifice to seeing an idea become a reality with HOPE Business In A Box, my 7 years as a HOPE Corp volunteer sharing Banking on Our Future with students all over, and my life will forever be changed by the lives that I encountered and embraced over 7 amazing years. Being away from both programs, away from the students and the pitch competitions feels awkward, abnormal, and like a huge void. But I will just have to find a new “home” to connect with, serve, and share my gifts.

I’m glad that my advice and suggestions have led to the start of other programs, technologies, organizational practices, social groups, and organizations over the past few years. No one and nothing can change that. It was, it is, and it forever will be a part of my legacy and the legacy of this great organization and those affiliates that have launched in the past two years. May they all thrive and be successful. I’ve done what I was supposed to and I’m grateful for the opportunity.

If you’re a supporter of the work then increase your level of support, there’s a global mission to fulfill. If you’re not a supporter then consider being one. Support their efforts—or support another organization’s efforts, just do something. Don’t just be a spectator, be a positive change agent.

My job there is done. Sooner than I thought. I wanted to do so much more. But that’s an “oh well”. The season is over and it’s time to move forward.

Now it’s time to end one chapter and begin a new one. Well I’ve already started on my new chapter, I’m just telling you so that you can catch up (*smile*). You can’t keep holding on to the page of this book trying to re-read the sentences, and I won’t entertain you as you attempt to stall. The story doesn’t just pause or remain in your fragmented happy-limbo state simply because you don’t move forward. It’s time to turn the page….

As the saying goes, “people are in your life for a reason, a season, and a lifetime” and the latter just wasn’t in the cards for us. The “reason” for me was and is clear—to see and feel the possibility of giving, sharing, supporting, and believing in someone else as much and in many ways more than myself. I supported the man and his mission while focused on my own. I made it “look easy” (as some have said) because it wasn’t “work” in my mind, for me I was doing my part as a partner, I was doing what it took to help a man fulfill his mission.

Was I perfect and flawless? Heck no. I’m imperfect and have numerous flaws. I did the best I could with the resources that I had. Could’ve done more. Could’ve said more. But coulda, shoulda, woulda doesn’t matter.

For seven years I loved and sacrificed for a man, and I have absolutely no regrets. I was blessed to love so deeply and for as long as I did. If I couldn’t say that, then I would have to question a great deal about myself and my relationship. I put my trust in God and He never fails me. My hurt and disappointment will be temporary because what I have with God is eternal. I keep my eyes, ears, and heart tuned into His station.

For me, my marriage was the commitment to be selfless and to dive in with both feet, dedicated to fulfilling my vows in all ways. I’ve grown tremendously, learned a great deal, and seen (and felt) the joy of giving myself to another while pushing and praying for that person so that they might reach every goal and overcome every obstacle. I did all that I could to protect him, the organization, and the mission.

Marriage is a wonderful union and commitment. I will always honor what it means to be married and to be a wife—both in the spiritual and literal sense.

My ex-husband taught me a lot about life, business, entrepreneurship, perseverance, overcoming adversity, facing fears, the value of building relationships not just networking, having the courage to try anything at least once and to ask for what you want in business—as he always says, “you walked in with a “no” it’s your goal to turn that “no” to a “yes”, if you don’t then it doesn’t matter, you had “no” coming in….”. Those are wise words that I recite when I need a pep talk.

I will take some of the lessons that I learned from observing, listening, and being guided by him, and I will build upon them as I climb to goals yet achieved. I will reattempt things that I failed at, like scuba diving (my deep sea experience was too much for a beginner) and getting back on a scooter (after falling and getting second degree burns from the motor—two weeks before our wedding).

I’m focused on being a better person, servant, woman, daughter, sister, aunt, friend, educator, and entrepreneur. I’m focused on preparing myself as a mother and maybe one day, even a wife again—well, the latter isn’t my focus, but as the saying goes, “never say never” and since I’ve been wrong about my “never’s” before, I will let God guide me.

Let me stop you now—no, I’m not in a relationship. I’m taking this time to focus on healing, praying, and getting stronger spiritually, emotionally, and physically. It would be unfair of me to subject a new person to my post-divorce life. I still have “muscle memory” of living with and sharing life with one man for seven years. I can’t just abruptly jump into a new relationship as though I’m healed, good, and ready to move into something with a new person. That would mean that I didn’t value my marriage and my role in it. That would mean that I had and have no feelings for him and for what we shared and built together. That would be a lie.

It would be cruel and disrespectful to subject someone to that space in my life, when I need to be open and free to give myself without reservations. I’ve grown accustomed to a routine with one person for seven years. That’s not easy to unwind and realign. I’m in no rush.

I need to feel and experience all that God needs me to realize, so that I can embrace, learn, and grow into the well-rounded woman He needs me to be. I can’t be the woman that a new man needs if I’m still wired to what my last man needed. And a new man shouldn’t be compared and contrasted to my last one. I need time and space for a clean slate—or as clean as can be expected.

I’ve spent this year working on me and learning what I want and don’t want, and what I need and don’t need in both my personal and professional lives. I have to work through and push past some fears and doubts. I have to walk the walk as it relates to my faith in God. If I say I know He has me, then I have to walk with my head up and eyes focused with the confidence in knowing that God has already taken care of my needs—He’s just waiting on me to catch up.

All that I want for Christmas is to be surrounded by my family and the peace that comes from knowing “all will be well because I walk with the Lord”. I asked my family for onesie pajamas and a $40 Atari classic game set. I’ve never been about the big, pricey gifts. I’m sentimental, so what is “small” to you is huge to me.

Some of you may be shocked to read this. Shouldn’t I be bitter and enraged? No, not at all. God is constantly blessing me and how ungrateful would I be to wallow in anger and misery when He has blessed me even through this transition. I’m saddened to see a relationship that I valued greatly come to an end—I planned to grow old with this man, and die loving and committed to him— but I know that God has other plans and He has never left or forsaken me. I’m not being punished. I’m being molded, strengthened, focused, and prepared by God. I accept what has happened because I know that if God intended for it to be it would still be.

So although I’m no longer married I am not broken. I am not alone or lonely. God has me in His Hands. I’m surrounded by family and my true friends. My cup runneth over. That brings me absolute joy!

It’s difficult to balance a private-public life and I’ve done a pretty good job with it for several years. I yearn to continue maintaining a semblance of privacy as I look forward on the path God has placed before me. It’s already difficult to remain focused with life’s distractions, I don’t need anything extra coming my way through rumors, declarations, or inquiries. Of course you will see my highlight reels, but the full and complete story of my life is reserved exclusively for me.

Just consider if you were me–try walking in my shoes for a moment and consider how you would want to be treated, and then please try your best to walk, act, and speak accordingly.

Please don’t attempt to be a Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys new-age sleuth intrigued by missing puzzle pieces. Don’t waste your time trying to figure out the how, who, when, why, and where. You won’t have time to focus on your own life. Just let us move on with dignity. Please.

Thank you to those of you who have prayed with and for me, been supportive, a shoulder and a sounding board, wiping my tears and holding my hand, and never wavering a moment as my truest of friends. Thank you for never altering your relationship with me, but remaining the same as you have always been. Solid and true to your word. I love, value, and respect you.

Now let’s all get up, get out, and do what God has called us to do!

May He bless each of us abundantly and I pray that we are prepared and ready to embrace those blessings. May your year end better than it started, and may your New Year be better than this year. I know mine will be!

Warmest wishes and deepest respect,

Natasha

Copyright 2017. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

I’m so excited to see that my friend and colleague Dr. Steve Woodsmall is positioning himself for a Congressional run for 2018.

I endorse Dr. Steve Woodsmall.

He has the strength, fortitude, conviction, and no-nonsense mindset that is needed to come in and bring true change to the status quo. A lot of people talk the talk. I’ve always known Steve to walk the walk.

I’m sharing pictures of Steve in this post to help you see and connect with the man that I’ve known as a friend for 7 years. I forgot to ask Steve for permission to post these pictures so I’m asking him for a “pass” (*smile*).

Steve is an amazing leader, served our country as a Commander in the Air Force, has a global perspective that is inclusive, he’s tough as nails but has a giving heart, and everyone who knows him knows that he is excellence-driven.

He has been molding and challenging minds of college students as a university professor for about four years now, and has been officiating youth basketball games for numerous years.

Steve is a family man with four children and several grandchildren. He’s an avid scuba diver and golfer.

A native of Elnora, Indiana, he has his hand on the pulse of everyday Americans and those who immigrate here looking for a better tomorrow than their yesterday. Steve understands, knows and relates to the needs of the middle class and working class.

Steve Woodsmall understands the nuances and blind spots of both the public and private sectors, as he’s worked in and served as a leader in both—he comes with experience and a desire to bring positive change that helps ALL not just a few.

Please help Steve jumpstart his campaign. He has launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise $2,018 for the congressional filing fees. Please support his efforts by donating what you can https://www.gofundme.com/congressional-filing-fee

Our country needs a passing of the torch. We need fresh minds who can be foot soldiers for the people.

We need more Steve’s working for us and on our behalf. We need to de-clog the system that keeps bringing forth and electing individuals who only serve a small percentage of the population, and rebuild it instead with people who are focused on serving ALL of the people. No self-interest, just service, action, and positive impact.

To learn more about Steve I strongly recommend that you read his book (yes, he’s an author, and I gave him a raving review) “It Beats Eating Lizards” which is available on Amazon. A bio only says so much, to get an understanding for his mindset, leadership approach, and views you should read what he has written–it’s like having a conversation with him.

Steve’s FB campaign page was just launched TODAY so expect to find updates and details about him and his vision to be shared soon.

I pray that Dr. Steve Woodsmall is given the opportunity to serve his state and our country in Congress. Please help him get there so that we have one more person fighting for us! https://www.gofundme.com/congressional-filing-fee

~Natasha

Happy Veteran’s Day to all who have served. Your sacrifice does not go unnoticed. You protected us from others and from ourselves. You don’t know us but you swore to fight for our freedom and protection of our human and constitutional rights. I thank you. 

I come from a military family, both my maternal and paternal sides. My paternal grandfather (and his three brothers) all served. I have uncles who have served. I have cousins who served and some who continue to serve. I have friends who served and some who continue to serve. 

My loved ones proudly and courageously served our country and I strive to always honor them and others who have and still are serving. 

Since I was a small child I’ve always had great respect for the foot soldiers who make it possible for us to sleep throughout the night with limited fear of foreign attack.  I’ve also (since childhood) passionately spoken out against the decisions that leaders have made that directly impact those same soldiers. As I grew older I began to take notice of the infrastructure that was set in place to support troops but has weakened through one administration after the next. It was in trouble in the 1980s and now…well now it needs a lifeline. It’s a huge problem that no one quite knows how to wrap their hands around, because sadly it would seem as though those placed in charge of this huge feat don’t have the management and leadership skills to wrangle it and put things in their proper order. So the pile gets pushed on year after year, administration after administration—one big bureaucratic landfill. 

I pray that our country does a better job at supporting active, inactive, and retired military personnel with:

  • mental and physical healthcare needs,
  • job and career training and placement, and tax credits (and other incentives) to companies who hire veterans, 
  • housing needs, 
  • financial education and planning services, and 
  • healthy transitioning to civilian life. 


 Don’t Forget The Human                            It’s not good enough to just say “thank you” during holidays, political speeches, debates, and when you want to prove patriotism. These men and women risk their lives, sacrifice being with their family, and put everything on the line to follow orders that could potentially lead to their death, dismemberment, or loss of vision, hearing, speech, or mental capabilities. They know that one decision could risk everything. 

They are human beings with dreams, fears, concerns, needs and wants just like you. They are not robots. They bleed and die just like you. 

Don’t turn them into figureheads. Don’t let them just be good marketing figures. Don’t pimp them out to reinforce your agendas. If you truly support the troops then force the positive change that is needed to truly support them. 

As much propaganda and grandstanding that has taken place over the years (and especially the last two months)—using the service of our great men and women to serve a twisted agenda, we should expect to see people put their money where their mouths are, and invest heavily in our troops—and not just more military spending focused primarily on weapons and technology, but a huge budget that is consciously focused on the person while they actively serve and after—for as long as they live. 

Stop Brushing Aside PTSD                                                                Stop pretending that PTSD is not real or is too rare to be significant. It is real, it is huge, we have troops in the field and returning home right now who silently suffer from it, and we can do something about it. 

PTSD is more common than what is being shared and just as we ignorantly raise boys to not cry because it’s “a sign of weakness” and something that “only girls do”, we program men to not seek counseling and help because “it’s a sign of weakness”. Then when their trauma is left untreated and something awful happens we say “it’s clearly a mental health issue”. Yes, an issue that this person could have received treatment and support for if they had the resources and internal and external support to get the help that they need. 

You can’t deny PTSD if you witness bombings, shootings, human limbs strewn on the ground, the smells and sight of death and destruction. No one is ever prepared for this level of trauma. No amount of training can trick the mind to translate these images, sounds, and smells into “normal”. Yet we transition our troops back home with little time to adjust, sometimes only one month on a military base, before they have to engage in civilian life with sights and sounds that may actually trigger traumatic memories. 

June 27th is PTSD Awareness Day. Most people don’t know this. But sadly it’s only one day. We can and must do better for our troops and veterans. 

We should expect to see major overhaul of Veteran’s Affairs and VA hospitals across the country. They are under-funded, under-staffed, and lack the support and proper management that they need to fully provide the services that they are supposed to provide. 

We should expect to see the suffocating bureaucratic red tape cut down so that veterans have immediate access to the resources that they need to not only survive but thrive when they are no longer in active service. It never makes sense to see a homeless veteran. They deserve the best mental and physical healthcare and other resources. 

Our troops should have better benefits than our elected and appointed officials

Let’s keep it real shall we? What are elected and appointed officials sacrificing? Let’s especially look at those who have the luxury of no term limits, cushy desk jobs, photo ops and press conferences, access to private jets, exceptional healthcare, and guaranteed salary? 

Don’t you think and believe that our troops deserve better resources and greater access to those resources than the people we elect (or who are appointed) to office?

Do your part to truly support our troops

It’s more than waving a flag and having a BBQ. It’s more than wearing the flag as a bandana, bikini, shorts, hair accessory, tie, or towel—which by the way are violations of the flag code. 

Here are some ways to honor and support those who serve and the veterans who have served:

  • Bug the mess out of your local, state, and federal officials to get off of their lazy, entitled butts and bring the reform that our country needs to support active, inactive, and veteran personnel. 
  • Do your part by volunteering at clinics, nonprofits, and agencies that provide service to our troops. 
  • Do your part by donating to reputable nonprofits that service veterans. 
  • Do your part by offering jobs and careers to veterans. Revise your businesss and marketing plans to consciously make them part of your target market of job candidates. 
  • Do your part by having special year-round programs for veterans provided through or sponsored by your organization. 

The pomp and ceremony is great, it’s nostalgic, it’s unifying. It’s also temporary. One day or one weekend of free meals or services is great. What about the other days and weekends of the year? We have to give beyond two to three federally-recognized  holidays. 

Have you ever recognized the military’s holiday and special observance calendar? Did you know that they have one? Let me help you out: https://militarybenefits.info/military-calendar-holidays-events-observances/

Now consider some other ways that you, your family, your neighborhood, your workplace, religious institution, and school can truly support the men and women who sacrifice more than all of us, and have little to show for it. 

Happy Veterans Day!

~Natasha 

Earlier today I posted a photo on social media of an article I read that tore at my heart. It’s a small highlight of the devastating reality caused by this new administration’s quest at mass deportation as the best stab at immigration reform. 

This article tells the story of a family living in Texas who faced one of the scariest moments of their life, watching their child suffer in need of medical care—just to face arrest from Border Patrol officers who were notified by the hospital that two non-citizen immigrants needed permission to go through a check point (where they are checking for illegal immigrants) so they can go to a hospital three hours away. The infant, a U.S. citizen, has a life-threatening condition and this other hospital can perform the operation. When you read what unfolded and how this family was treated how do you feel inside? What thoughts do you have?


I would like to say to those of you who provide the blanket response “but it’s legal” or “the officers were doing their job“: 

When we make excuses for unethical behavior those excuses become the layers that reinforce this toxic environment that is killing this nation from within. 

When we say “it’s legal” or “it was their job” we then should ask:

  • but is it ethical? 
  • Is it right? 
  • Is it fair? 
  • Is it humane? 
  • Would I want that done to me? 

The excuses of legality and doing one’s job has been used for decades to support racism, classism, sexism, discrimination, mass incarceration, slavery, lynching, murder, torture, and more. 

We hypocritically apply these excuses when they serve our beliefs, values, or needs. But then we’re outraged when the roles are reversed and someone that we feel should be punished and “locked up” isn’t because the government says they were “doing their job” or what they did was “legal”. 

Safe zones are no longer safe zones under this new Administration. Schools, hospitals, churches, and other designated areas were off limits for ICE under the last Administration. We shouldn’t have to outline a square footage parameter outside of the safe zones as designated “okay to apprehend” zones. Unethical people will still bend the rules and claim that they were outside the safe zone space, so the arrest is “legal”. 

Imagine being arrested while dropping your daughter off at school or at the hospital where she’s facing a life threatening emergency. 

Our nationalistic approach of “Americanism” should never ever ever outweigh the most important title and role in this world…”Human“. 

We must do better. 

We must stop being so cold, callous, and arrogant yet expect respect, admiration, support, sympathy and empathy from the rest of the world. 

We must stop crying foul only when an American life is on the line but then be dismissive of non-Americans. We must stop acting as though the rules only apply to us when we say that they do. 

We must end this toxic cycle if we are to heal, rebuild, and grow. Or we will destroy this nation from within and we can blame every outsider if we want, but the facts will clearly show that our demise will be our doing alone. We can’t possibly mean it when we say “God bless America” if we’re excluding groups of people that help build this country and our economy, and make it the greatest nation on the planet. 

My next post will delve deeper into this topic to hopefully advance a greater and healthier discussion. We must do better! 
Source: NPR (Sept. 20, 2017) http://www.npr.org/2017/09/20/552339976/border-patrol-arrests-parents-while-infant-awaits-serious-operation

Some people wonder why I’ve always wanted to be a teacher and even more perplexing (and in recent years), a college professor. Below are some of the comments from students in my most recent Business Management course that just wrapped for the semester yesterday. We spent 17 weeks together, learning and sharing, and as they have learned from me I have learned a great deal from them.

It touches my heart to know that I made and make a difference, that the information that I’m sharing is not falling on “closed” ears and minds, and that they are not only implementing (in their professional and personal lives) what I’m teaching but they are empowered to challenge themselves in those areas of their life.

If I can help encourage them to be better students, employees, employers, managers, leaders, family members, life partners, and members of their community–then I’ve done my job. There are thousands of established organizations and thousands of future startups that will build and nurture a culture that will either thrive or die. My goal is pour into my students enough information and learned lessons that they can take with them to help positively change the culture and environment of organizations and communities all over. You never know who the next “big time” entrepreneur may be. It could be one of my students. So I’m going to give them all that I have and more!

I love to see those “light bulbs” come on when they grasp a concept that I’m sharing, or finally see “why Professor Bryant made us do this assignment“. I love to see my students step up, accept my challenges, and succeed. I love to hear my students share how they tested one of my concepts to see if I knew what I was talking about, just to discover I was right. That shows me that they are listening and not just regurgitating information to pass tests and get out of my class. I’m reaching them and what they are hearing and learning is “clicking”. Oh how that brings me so much joy. These are the the reasons why I’m a college professor and why I love what I do.

I won’t lie, after reading some of these comments below I shed a few tears:

Dear Prof Bryant,

Thank you so much for really challenging me and being there every step of the way. There were times when I felt like giving up, but thanks to you and the self discipline that I’m still practicing, I survived from flunking and I will still read my book and reference it as long as I’m in the workforce and when I get enough courage to become the entrepreneur that I dream to be. Thank you! God bless!!! 


Hello Class & Ms.Bryant 

This semester has been very interesting. This has been my first online class that required a weekly assignment and a discussion. I really enjoyed that there was weekly assignments and we were able to communicate with each other. Being able to see how others react and think about situations help me understand that theres always different ways to solve problems. I really learned some great knowledge of management and will always apply them to my everyday living. I’m going to continue  to read my book so I will have all skills mastered.


The time I have spent in Prof.Bryant’s class has been fresh and a new breathe of air. I have been a student online and have never met any of you, but still felt a big connection to this wonderful class. I enjoy reading everyone’s discussion posts….I also intend to use my management information from this class to better understand people of all levels,whether an owner of their store. The management sides are enormous and able to advance to top level with hard work. I have really enjoyed this class. Thank you


I really enjoyed being in this class.  I learned a lot from the other students.  I wouldn’t mind having some of them as my supervisor or manager.  I learned a lot about them, such as what goes on at their job, how their family lives and their lives are.  I can learn from the feedback that they gave me during our discussions and apply it to my everyday life or with events happening in my family.  They were an excellent group to participate with and I enjoyed my instructor.  She said she was going to shake us a little and she did.  She kept me on my toes and there was a little pressure which made me concentrate and get the work done like it was supposed to be.  Thank you Prof Bryant and thank you class.


These 17 weeks went by very fast and I’ve enjoyed learning and growing with this class. I’ve learned so much from motivating employees, building an effective team, planning, control, ethical responsibilities, how to handle stress, along with many other things. This class also taught me management isn’t as easy as I wanted it would be but I’m more knowledgeable and gained confident. I plan to further my education and continue to learn everything there is about management.


   This semester has been great and very informative. The information I learned during this course will definitely benefit me while pursuing my dream as the future owner of my own radiology clinic. Ms. Bryant you have showed me different fundamentals of management and made me realize that its not as easy as it looks. Now I feel somewhat prepared to be a manager and I will always go to my references to refresh my memory….Thanks so much for being a great professor Ms. Bryant!!!


I am glad that I took this class with the instructor that we have had because at first I thought the class was going to be hard, not to say that it was easy writing all those assignments on Zestiful, Inc., but I must say it was a lot better experience than I thought it would be when I was sitting at my computer 17 weeks ago.  Truthfully, I thought the class was going to be a lot harder. We did work our butts off though. I am also glad that we used the whole book, even though reading it was a chore. Being that I work in a college bookstore, the main complaint that I hear from students is that the instructor never used the book at all, so I am glad we used the whole thing.      


I have learned a lot from the Principles of Management class. Professor Bryant I enjoyed being your student this semester!! Thank you for being a great professor!! I enjoyed interacting with my classmates weekly through the discussion board. I pray that everyone pass this class. I gained a lot of knowledge from this class and I will apply the management skills to my career and  everyday life.


…I have learned a great deal about planning and setting realistic goals and also about the different levels of management and what decisions and issues each level should handle. I have also learned about some of the different unethical situations that happen in the workplace and some of the ways to solve them. Learning the principles and fundamentals of management in this class has prepared me for my future in Property Management and will also help me to continue that success even in my personal life.


 

I’m so excited about my big announcement that I made about three hours ago on my Breaking Bread With Natasha site. 

Check it out and then if you’re feeling it, and want to join the journey, do a happy dance with me! 💃🏽 Whoo hoo!!!! 

https://breakingbreadwithnatasha.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/my-big-announcement/

image-november-8-2016-2-33-18-pm

I was so proud to see the photo of my Storiboard Nation team member, Vanessa Razo, along with her parents, at the polls where they voted as first-time voters. Yes, you read that right. This was the first time Vanessa and her parents have voted. Not because they didn’t want to vote in the past, or didn’t support previous candidates. It also wasn’t because they were lazy. They didn’t vote because they couldn’t.

It took Vanessa and her parents 23 years to finally become U.S. citizens and be granted the right to vote. That’s 23 years of working, paying taxes and positively contributing to society, while having to jump through years of bureaucratic red tape. They relocated to the United States in 1993 and have been trying every single day to fully take part in the American dream.

Most people think the path to citizenship is easy breezy, like going to get a driver’s license….You just show up, take a short test, smile for the camera, and if you pass the test then you say an oath and become a citizen. If you don’t pass, you just wait a few days and try again on whichever portion of the test you failed.

Not even close!

Well not for the vast majority of residents who spend thousands of dollars and thousands of hours so that they can proudly say they are an “American”. For the small percentage of privileged individuals who somehow get their status fast-tracked, even their process isn’t done in one week–but let’s not even go down that path.

The citizenship process looks very simple on paper:

  • Step One: Find Out Whether You Are Eligible. The first question is whether you have a U.S. green card (lawful permanent residence for on average 5 years). …Green cards cost $340-$1,500
  • Step Two: Overcome Barriers to Your Ineligibility. …
  • Step Three: File USCIS Form N-400. …Filing fee is currently $595.00 plus $85.00 biometrics fee
  • Step Four: Get Fingerprinted. …
  • Step Five: Attend a Citizenship Interview. …Which includes English (ability to speak, read, and write it) and an oral U.S. History and Government test (the test proctor selects the questions)
  • Step Six: Attend the Oath Ceremony….This is the step most of us witness through news coverage (which makes it look like a one-day process)

These six steps can take numerous years to complete. For Vanessa and her parents, it took 23 extremely long years. It was no cakewalk. They are fortunate to now be citizens and have full access to the systems, processes, and privileges that other Americans have. Sadly, they have other family members and friends who are still waiting for the day when they can become citizens. I too have friends who are waiting. Some have been waiting for over 25 years. They continue to work, pay bills, pay taxes, pay legal fees, and contribute to our economy, while they wait patiently.

I pray that the results from our recent election does not discourage or intimidate them. Instead, I hope that it helps them to passionately focus on making their dreams come true in the land that has provided them various options, opportunities, and freedoms that their birth country did not provide.

I pray that Vanessa and her parents become more engaged in the political process and encourage others to remain focused and get involved in making sure that this country remains the multicultural home of the free and the land of the brave!

If you know of anyone who is going through the green card and citizenship process, tell them to not lose hope, and don’t get distracted by what they see, read, and hear through media outlets and social media…or even narrow-minded politicians. Tell them to just dig in deep and remember why they are here and why they want so badly to become an American. Our country desperately needs those positive vibes!

~Natasha