Back to School
In this issue...
The Joy & Worry of Going Back to School
A Dream Come True
Aspbergers & Homeschooling
Ask Tina
Sneakers Please!
Empowering the Middle School Student
Back to School Tips
The Evolution of BTS
 For women throughout the world who seek to find a place to unite, the search is over.

September 2012
FMSF Hands
Depending on where you live, either the kids have already returned to school or they are gearing up to walk through those doors. The new school year is always an interesting time for parents as the rise early to capture pictures of the day and their children stand there wishing they can just leave already.

This month mothers, like you, share their stories of back to school shopping, empowering their children,
homeschooling and fulfilling a lifelong dream. Let's get ready for Back to School. 
 Erica D. Kelly
Editor in Chief
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Bacon & Egg Breakfast Tacos (instead of McD's)
brkfst taco
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2  teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 pieces of bacon cooked and crumbled
  • 1 large tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Hot sauce or salsa for an extra zing (optional)




1. To warm tortillas, stack them and wrap in damp (but not wet) towels. Place onto a microwave safe plate and microwave for 2 minutes or until warm. Remove tortillas from microwave and wrap in foil until ready to serve.


2. In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, salt and pepper. Add eggs to skillet and cook, scrambling with a fork until eggs are just set but still a little moist.


3. Lay tortillas out on a flat surface. Evenly distribute scrambled eggs onto each tortilla and top with crumbled bacon, chopped tomato, cheese, cilantro, and hot sauce or salsa, if using. Fold taco over and serve immediately. 



Almond Joy Style Oatmeal (instead of the package)



  • 3-1/2 cups milk*
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups quick-cooking or old fashioned oats
  • 1/3 cup chopped almonds
  • 1/3 cup shredded coconut
  •  1/3 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional)
1. In a medium saucepan, combine milk, cocoa powder, salt, and almond extract and bring to a gentle boil over medium heat, whisking to ensure mixture is well combined. Stir in oats. Return to a boil; reduce heat to low. Cook for 1 minute (5 minutes for old-fashioned oats), stirring occasionally.
2. Remove oatmeal from heat and divide among 4 bowls. Top each with chopped almonds, coconut, and chocolate chips, if using.
*Swap out the cow's milk for water, soy, rice or almond milk. Even chocolate soy or chocolate almond milk is a delicious substitution. 


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Rosalyn Beyers


The time is upon us when ding, it's time to get up. The hustle and bustle of a new school year begins. The kid asks, "Where are my socks, where is this, where is that." Then more statements and questions come my way, "I am hungry mom; what are we having for breakfast; can you sign this paper; I need money for this, I need money for that." Finally the clock on the wall tells me it's time to go. I yell, "Hurry up child before you miss the bus."

Once outside it's a whole new world of kids with no supervision, and only God knows what can or will happen. Strange people walk about in the morning hours and I find myself sad as I see little kids 6 and 7 year olds walk themselves to the bus stop while their parents lay up in the house. With all the abductions, murders and rapes that occur around the world, what do they think; our neighborhood is exempt from things happening to their children?

Back to School brings joy and worry. The joy my child is learning a lot of things, challenging her brain, being active, interacting with different cultures, and developing people skills which are a must have for any job field or business. The worry, I hope she is safe on the bus. I hope no one harms her. I hope no one shoots up the school. I hope there is nothing preventing her from getting home safe and for me to see her face and ask how was your day?

I really can't complain about the cost of school supplies, as education is free in America. In other countries you have to pay for elementary school. So I guess we are lucky. All in all, I am happy school is back in session. At the same time, I am happy when it ends. Perhaps I should ask my daughter if she feels the same way.  


Rosalyn Byers is a mom, entrepreneur and President/CEO of Beautifro All Natural Products. To learn more about her products, please visit 


 Claudia Schanck

Fifteen and pregnant I dropped out of school and all the dreams I wanted for myself squashed. As time went by, I accepted my situation and tried to accept my fate. I had so many dreams and one was to become a famous writer. Instead I became a young girl thrust into motherhood and marriage, clueless about life, and angry with the world.

I envied all the girls my age that were doing the things I wanted to do; going to dances, dating, and having fun. Most of all, I envied them because they were going to do the one thing I felt I would never get the chance to - walk across the stage and receive my diploma. Believing for many years that I had blown my opportunity, I accepted that as a reality.

Most of my adult life was filled with shame and regret of the fact that I never finished school. Other than my family, I never told anyone my secret. By a stroke of luck I was offered good jobs even though I did not reveal the truth on my applications. As time moved on, I would often avoid conversations about the whole high school experience that most enjoyed for fear of my colleagues learning my secret.

As I reached my fifties, I tried to convince myself that I didn't need a diploma. I thought what for I had a good paying job and worked for a good company, it wasn't important. However, in my heart, I knew having my diploma was important to me. Therefore, I made a decision it was time to make me happy. I chose to return to school to work toward receiving my high school diploma. In September 2010, I passed my final exam and in June 2011, I reached my goal and walked across the stage to receive my diploma.

I tell this story in hopes that it will encourage others. It is never too late to go after your dreams, and you are never too old. Just because a door is closed, doesn't always mean it's locked, turn the knob.

Claudia is a Certified Nursing Assistant, a mother of three, 
and a grandmother of seven who enjoys writing poetry, and has 
plans of writing a book in the very near future.


Dana Susan Beasley


As moms everywhere prepare for another school year, in our household it looks a little different. But that's okay. In fact, I am doubly blessed.


Four years ago our son, Sam, finished what ended up to be a stressful experience in first grade. He was a round peg in a square hole. 


I was commiserating with a friend when she said, "Why don't you homeschool?".


My friend laid out a vision of a creative life as a business owner and homeschooling mom.


And that's what I became.


From the start, I was determined not to make school stressful. I was determined not to bring school home but make it something completely different, something suited to my son's unique learning style.


Now I know I said that I am doubly blessed but I won't sugar coat it and tell you it was easy. It wasn't. And as we home schooled that first year, my son's special needs became apparent. I started putting the pieces of the puzzle together. We discovered that he has Aspergers Syndrome.


Now as Sam enters sixth grade, I can indeed say that I am doubly blessed.


Just because he is different doesn't mean he can't be as successful as he wants to be. I will prepare him for a bright future with every ounce in me.


It's a daily walk of faith as I juggle homeschooling, my business, and a fledgling ministry. But staying at home with my Asperger child and homeschooling him is the why behind everything I do.


Because in this back to school season, even as mother's send their children off to school, I am looking forward to a new year of learning, exploring, growing, and most of all, deepening one of the most important relationships in my life--the close relationship I have with my Asperger son, Sam!


Dana Susan Beasley, a homeschooling mother and owner of AngelArts,
a creative arts agency and publishing house and the creator of Brand Identity Quest, is passionate about helping families create dazzling futures for themselves by showing them how to build sizzling brands. She is the author of a free ebook called "Your Guide to Building a Family Economy that SIZZLES." You can download it at 


Tina C. Hines, Life Transformation Specialist


" For the longest I wanted to return to school and earn my degree, but felt that returning to school would take away the time I spent with my family...
What should I do? I don't want to
 let my family down, but at the same time this desire still exists."
Tina Says... We often take our family into consideration when it comes to some of the goals we want to reach in life. Consider what obtaining your degree would mean to you. Your degree can help you receive a promotion at your current place of employment, or obtain a position in an area that is your passion but required more education. If you continue to place your desires on the back burner, you will never be fulfilled because the desire will remain. Start out by registering for one class and perhaps your family will begin to see how serious you are about your education and reaching goals you have set for yourself.
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Edwrina Wilford


At times, life can get quite challenging when raising a 12 year old daughter. This is one of those of those times...

We know that often times back to school shopping can become quite expensive. Especially when shopping for a daughter who feels her mom is the cheapest person in the world. I was going to prove my daughter, Hannah wrong while remaining within my budget.


Over the weekend, Hannah and I set out to complete last minute school shopping but I never thought it would become such an exhausting task.  I bought some really nice outfits at reasonable prices (again, while remaining within budget). Like most girls, Hannah enjoys shopping for shoes. In fact, she has more pair of shoes than I.  We entered The Shoe Dept. and I saw a really nice pair of Baby Phat sneakers that were on sale for $29.99 and Converse for $24.99. My daughter was not pleased with my choice of sneakers. Was it the price? She asked if we could look somewhere else.


Ok, I took Ms. Hannah over to Finish Line. A bright smile appeared on her face as she gazed over at the Air Jordan's priced at $170. I demanded she look at some other sneakers as this mom was not paying that amount. Hannah then noticed a pair of Adidas and Nikes (priced at $74.99 and 59.99). Okay my patients were getting thin and none of the sneakers she picked were within my budget. If it was left to me, we'd be at Payless getting her BoGo (Buy one Get one half price) shoes.


Hannah pleaded and stated reasons why she needed those particular sneakers. I continued to refuse until she said those words... "I love you mommy and I appreciate everything you do. I'll just ask Daddy." Although my mind said DON'T DO IT, my heart caved in and I bought 2 pair of sneakers; the Adidas and the Nikes. Yes, I was a pushover but what's a mom to do. The next time I'm sticking to my budget.


Edwrina is a Christian, full time mom and grandmother. She is the Owner of PAD Solutions ( , an office support company providing word processing, secretarial and document automation to businesses in Charlotte, NC. 


Middle School


 Feona Sharhran Huff


Middle school is a major deal in a young person's world. They are transitioning from an elementary school experience where they were closely monitored and escorted throughout the halls to a life in which they now have to become much more independent, be responsible for getting to their various class on time and on their own, navigate social cliques (i.e. popular girls, jocks, computer whizzes, etc) and peer pressure, and watch their bodies develop before everybody's eyes. It's a time where they are trying to find their way, figure things out and fit in so they don't stand out like a sore thumb.


With this season in their life being so fresh (and somewhat frightening), it is imperative that we as parents empower our young ladies and gentlemen with a high self-esteem, strong leadership skills and a mindset to cherish their authenticity (being a "carbon copy" is NOT cool).


These years are indeed a time when our sons and daughters are impressionable, vulnerable and care greatly about what their peers think of them. As a result, if their friends say something that is not favorable, it can have a detrimental and long-lasting affect on their academic standing, self-worth and behavior. So let's remind our 6th, 7th and 8th graders to care about what they think of themselves and to love who they are because they are awesome "as is" and to support them with every fiber of our being on their road to self-discovery.


Feona is the Publisher of Solo Mommy Magazine as well as a parent motivator, public speaker and a journalist of 20 years. You can visit her website at




When our children return to school, it also means we are going to school as well. Here are five tips to remember throughout the school year to help you cope with challenges before they are placed in your lap.  

  • There will always be a last minute project. Create of box of staple items like, tape, construction paper, glue, clay, etc . This way you are not running to Wal-Mart or Target at 9:00p.
  • Your child will need money at some point and they will tell you right before they are leaving for school. Stash $25 in an envelope so you don't find yourself at the ATM in your house shoes.
  • Look for a tutor now and keep their number on speed-dial. When your child is challenged in with the 'new' math, don't stress yourself, call the tutor.
  • Stay in contact with your children's teacher. If you know what is going on, you will not be surprised when their report card arrives in the mail.
  • Most importantly, your child is under a lot of stress trying to fit in with his/her peers. Try to listen more with your ears instead of your mouth. 

BTS THE EVOLUTION OF BTS: From Tin Holly Hobbie Lunchboxes to Men's Compression Shorts

Candice Alfonso


One of my most favorite "shopping holidays" has always been Back-To-School (BTS).  While it might sound strange, I do consider BTS a holiday worthy of shopping.  As a child, I remember being so excited to go shopping for new school clothes (even after my school converted to wearing god-awful emerald green plaid uniform skirts and white peter-pan collared shirts).  Additional staples on the list of goodies were a new pair of shoes, a backpack, lunch box (hot items were Holly Hobbie and Donny & Marie Osmond) and school stationary supplies.  The biggest treat for me would be when my mother brought some of these items home with her from work, adding to my BTS excitement.  For me, it always signified a fresh, new beginning, irrespective of the fact that it actually signified the fresh, new start to yet another year of school.


As an adult, I carried into motherhood that "new beginning" euphoria that late-August/early-September brings for me.  Early on, I instilled in my son that BTS shopping would cure any blues about actually returning BTS and it least for a while.  I remember he would get SO excited to prepare his must-have BTS "shopping list" for us to discuss, search, purchase items from, and even on occasion, debate (I never quite figured out how a baby brother fit into his BTS readiness, but nevertheless, it was on the list).  With the exception of annual baby brother disappointment, for him, the BTS euphoria continued.


In preparing with my son for his entry into the 9th grade last year, I remember being requested by him to schedule time to review his list to be sure that he had everything he absolutely needed, sans baby brother, to enter high school.  Instead of waiting for me to come home with BTS treats as I had with my mother, I received multiple text messages reminding me that we had to plan to sit together to organize his looseleaf binder by subject and review his list, for the umpteenth time, for errors or omissions. 


With a year of high school academics and competitive sports under his belt, the focus of his BTS shopping list has shifted and his interest in participating in the BTS "preparation" has somewhat waned.  This summer, I find that I am the one sending a gaggle of texts asking in all caps: 




His reply: "pair of Jordans pls i'll send pic. They have size 14 at flight club and dog ate hole in my compression shorts."  This year there was no request to schedule a time to shop, discuss, or strategize our adventure.  Sadly, I guess those days are slipping away with every BTS season that passes.  Instead, I find myself in the 1st floor men's underwear section of Sears, BTS shopping alone - searching for compression shorts long enough to fit my son's legs.  His BTS thoughts now focus on lamenting the fact that "it's 18 days away."  Or, perhaps, he just wants me to bring home this year's BTS treats like my mother did for me.



More TIna
A Journey in...
Self Discovery
Now is the time to rediscover the woman who has lain dormant for too long. Allow me to take you on a journey to identify areas in your life that you would like to break free, enhance or transform.

Join us for this unique Teleclass with 

Life Transformation Specialist 

Tina C. Hines

Ask yourself these questions: Has the woman who used to be more active been lost? Has your energy level taken a nose dive? Are you searching for your passion and have no idea where it can be found? If you have answered yes to any of the questions, then this is the teleclass for YOU. 


In this comprehensive, four-part teleclass, we'll explore: 


Week 1 - Break free from where you are to where you want to be.
Week 2 - Enhance the areas of your life you feel are lacking.
Week 3 - Transform your life from what it is to what you want it to be.

Week 4 - Rediscover the woman you want to be.




Later Sister Friends! 

We thank you for joining us this issue, and hope you are motivated  to continue on your personal journey. Whether it be educational, familial, or physical, your Sister Friends that have contributed their stories of personal triumph, learning experiences, and tips of the trade in our Back to School issue are here to support and encourage you to take the steps necessary to live a happier, healthier more harmonious life. 

      ~Be Inspired & Inspire Someone~

Ready for our next issue?

Our October issue will be themed: "Health & Fitness." We want to know how YOU are getting fit and healthy, the changes you've made for a healthier lifestyle, the ups and downs, hardships and challenges, trials and tribulations, goals and accomplishments. Submissions due on or before FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 21, 2012 Subject Line Should read: "Health & Fitness."