Thursday, October 29, 2009

Define Own it

What does OWN IT mean to you?
In a word.. a sentence.. a paragraph...
Give me your thoughts! Open your mouth!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

This Woman's Work

The video below is from last spring so a lot of you probably saw this... but maybe not. It is a Tribute to Breast Cancer that was beautifully choreographed into a dance on "So You Think You Can Dance". The dance illustrates the profound struggle between this couple, as they try to combat her disease. The song in the video "This Woman's Work" is by Maxwell... But I personally love the new version by Greg Laswell - I strongly suggest listening to the whole song with the volume way up; letting the words sink in. For anyone who has dealt with cancer in your family, this song may effect you in a deeper way (at least it does for me).
Lyrics can be found here.

Let's say the things we should say, do the things we should do.. to show the people we love just how much we actually need them.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

It's Been a Year

So I cannot believe it. Here I am, the anniversary of the worst day of my life. And today might be one of the best days! I'm in a wedding and before that, my sister is hosting a brunch for me this morning. The brunch started out a lot like this day last year. We'll invite 5 or 6 people for coffee and fruit. Then it turned into more like 20 people. :)

Last year I remember when my sister Audra told me she was on her way. I said "on your way?" and she said "are you KIDDING?" and hung up on me :) Then my mom in the hospital said "I'm going to go call ___ and ___ and ___" and I said "what? why?" and she said "you need their prayers". I paused as she was walking out the door and said "Mom? Go ahead and call ___ and ___ and ___too." She smiled and did it.

I didn't realize that I needed everyone to get through this. I am not good at asking for help (still working on that...) but I didn't even really realize I needed it until everyone stopped what they were doing and came running! My sisters, my nephews, my best friends, my cousins, old friends and neighbors...I received more cards, flowers, cupcakes, balloons, fruit baskets, and cookies than I thought possible. But I needed it all. I told my sister Audra that night "I didn't know that I needed you" and she said "I wish it had been me".

When I was in the hospital I remember moaning to mom that I don't want this, I didn't ask for it, I was doing just fine before this. Well, I was fine, but who wants to just be "fine"? Today I'm happier than I thought possible after such a short year. Everyone helped pull me out of this. I have so much more goodness going on in my life today that I wouldn't pick last year over this year. I'll take a few bad nights of sleep and a few bad memories over a life of living "fine". I guess you could say that I lived life looking through tinted glass, and now I that I truly see, I wouldn't ever go back.

Corina is here this weekend. We just woke up and said "I can't believe it's been a year". We started to reflect on all that has changed. I moved home, then bought a condo. I quit my job and got a new one. She's pregnant. My sister's pregnant. My other sister had a baby and they moved back here. Everything has changed! Everything is BETTER! God takes these horrible situations and turns them into the most beautiful gifts imaginable. I am thankful for all of this.

So, thank you to family, friends, and even strangers who have thought of me this year. Please continue to pray for me as the journey is not (and may not ever be) fully over.

"I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world"
-John 16:33

Friday, October 23, 2009

Response to "It's Time"

I’m Alexis. 23. NYC. I finally decided to make my first post with some encouragement from friends of course. Liza's post on "It's Time" really hit me, and I couldn't stay quiet anymore :-). So here I go....

“Women have made it permissible for men to disrespect us. Women have made it OK for men to treat us like men. Women have tried to become like men - denying emotion, heart, dignity, purity etc etc. Somehow in the fight to gain recognition as equals in the work place- we sold our gender short... Way short.” – Liza’s words from It’s Time

That quote I pulled was HUGELY impactful - something EVERYONE can relate to... no matter your beliefs - empowering women to realize it is in OUR control.

We (as women) created this society, and we have to stop BLAMING men....
We trained men to think this, that we want to be treated like men in work, in life, in relationships. We fought so hard to be equal that we lost everything else that is important to us. We lost respect for ourselves.... how can men respect us if we can’t even be clear on our needs and if we don’t even respect ourselves.

What I think the root of the problem is: Us setting unrealistic standards for ourselves and our relationships. Men think we want to do everything ourselves - we don’t need them - so they have NO responsibility anymore, but for themselves… and therefore we are treated that way.

We went so beyond equality. But we DO need men. We can't be everything.

We need to all start setting realistic expectations and change the way society views women’s roles. And we need to decide what those roles are.... or whether we need to have such SET roles.

Men aren't the enemy. We have TOLD them that we are self sufficient and don’t need them. (Assuming they would read into that and KNOW we didn’t mean it literally). But that’s not how it works, and they took it literally, and now here we are YEARS later.

Men and women think completely differently. And so we need to start taking control of ourselves and our actions and realize that. Realize that we can change it back to something more realistic, and we don’t need to be SO head strong and say we don’t need them for anything. Men do need to "feel" needed, as do we... We need to go back to some primal ideas. Remember that men were hunter-gatherers and inherently wanted to protect us? And women were the nurturers....This doesn’t mean we can’t work.... or do anything we ever wanted to do.

We need to realize that LOVE is a choice... and we need to love ourselves first. We need to Own it.

My Response....

I have thought back to that night many a time- I actually journaled that night we talked for hours in a friends backyard- looking back i wrote "...let it begin with me- do I believe in this dignity and my VALUE as a woman... how can I be the BEST version of THERESE FLOYD that there is!....I want to see my sisters grow up with CONFIDENCE in who they are and who they have been created to be!" I truly believe that the seeds planted that night- are coming to fruition- I look at the women we all have grown and are growing to become in these past 2 years- I LOVE to see the change we have undergone....some through life circumstance- others through suffering and tragedy that we never dreamed ourselves capable of- and others through innumerable joys- like recent promotions- weddings and now motherhood!

My life is changed- I feel as though everyday I spent in Honduras this past year convinced me more and more to fight for this cause- this cause for TRUE identity- the strength and grace that women have and NEED to bring to the table! Liza- my heart is on fire after reading your POST- we need to answer these stirrings in our hearts!

It is time we take ACTION! We have spent a beautiful two years affirming and inspiring EACH OTHER- now empowered we have an obligation to take it to the nations! I am 100% ... we need a brain-storming session- and then we need to pull back the dam- to let the floodgates of our minds- passion-creativity-and love flow forward! We WILL be the change we wish to see in our society!

Let's Roll.....

As Pope Paul VI said ...

"...the hour is coming, in fact has come, when the vocation of woman is being achieved in its fullness, the hour in which woman acquires in the world an influence, an effect and a power never hitherto achieved. That is why, at this moment when the human race is under-going so deep a transformation, women impregnated with the spirit of the Gospel can do so much to aid mankind in not falling...Women- you do know how to make truth sweet-tender- and accessible, make it your task to bring it into institutions, schools, homes, and daily life. Women of the entire universe, whether Christian or non-believing, you to whom life is entrusted at this grave moment in history, it is for you to save the peace of the world. "

A few Women (Big and Small who OWN-IT...and teach me to as well!)

One of the Mom's in Honduras caring for her baby...

Dona Maria- Look at that smile! Owning her IT!

My sister's- Learning how to OWN-IT!

My Inspiration!

My parents- My Mom SO Own's It!

One of my girl's at the HIV clinic- Look at her OWNING-IT!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

It's Time

When I first launched Own it I had a lot of ideas.
I had a lot of convictions that I wanted to set in motion; convictions to change the world. I had dreams of a world where women of all ages knew their worth. A world where children didn’t learn about oral sex in grade school. In this perfect world young girls would be raised to be virtuous, by men and women who themselves were virtuous. Everyone would OWN IT.

I wanted our world to stop the lies. I wanted to show young girls that they don’t have to put out to stand out. I wanted to share my thoughts and ideas with other amazing women, so we could inspire each other to not only own it in our daily lives, but to think of ways to spread these positive messages across our social networks, our communities, our world.

It was about 2 years ago at a backyard party in NJ when I spoke with Mary, Therese & Kathleen about these ideals. They immediately reciprocated these convictions and we talked for
hours. We talked about injustices in the world of sex and dating, about the lies we are told from youth, about the travesty of men these days. We agreed that the goal should be to educate, motivate & empower women. We didn’t know how but we certainly knew why. Then I set out to make a Blog just to have a starting point. Yes this simple old blog about owning it. A place where women of like minds could converse, share and support one another.

And that is where we are today.

The time has come where I have realized this is not enough. Not by a long shot.
I still have those same dreams I told you about above – but now they consume me in a way that I can no longer ignore. The time has come to tackle this thing called life – one cause at a time – and make a difference. I’m not talking blog a little with your gal pals difference. I’m talking BIG.

“If we don't change our direction we're likely to end up where we're headed.”

I’m afraid to think of where we could be headed. Just some stats that may keep rising and rising: Divorce rates/std rates/abortion rates/Avg.sexual partners per lifetime/…Broken Hearts

I went to a fascinating talk tonight by Dr. Claire J. Gaudiani called “Social Entrepreneurship in America: Women’s Work Since 1780”. It would take hours to fully delve into everything this talk was about – but what I can tell you is this. I am just one person with ideas. You are another person with ideas. Together we can call upon other people with ideas and so on. Gloria Steinem was one person with an idea – that generated a lot of opinions/ideas/support from like minded people. Together she and other feminists changed our country significantly. We have jobs because of them. We are treated equally in the work place, we have the option to stay home, work or even do both because of women like them who demanded change.

Unfortunately for us & for our little sisters.. they took it too far. In their fight to make us equal they tried to make us the same. But we are NOT the same. “The worst form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal.” -Aristotle

Women have made it permissible for men to disrespect us. Women have made it ok for men to treat us like men. Women have tried to become like men - denying emotion, heart, dignity, purity etc etc. Somehow in the fight to gain recognition as equals in the work place- we sold our gender short... Way short.

We need to change the direction our society is headed for the sake of our daughters. I want my daughters to have the option to work, to stay at home, to do whatever they want!! BUT I also want my daughters to live in a world that celebrates the beauty and the uniqueness of women. Not a world that squashes true femininity as weakness or prudeness. I want them to grow up seeing strong women, professional/capable women, who are also virtuous women. When did it become Uncool to have dignity?

There is no plan here.. no steps I have ready to lead you.. I need You to help me formulate them. I need your ideas, your skills, your talents.. to help us formulate a goal – a plan – an agenda – a movement. For those of you who don’t want to share on the blog with your ideas – email me.
Until next time – Own it ☺

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Clare is Here to stay!

WELL WELL WELL... check it out my fellow Owners... Clare (a longtime bff from college) is now joining the ranks of Own it Authors! Check out her pic down below if you don't know her..but I think almost all of you do!

Quick Stats:

Clare is a Newly wed - her hubby's name is Dan
They live in MN and she has a fab career!
She is sweet as pie, smart as hell, and happens to be one of my favorite dancers! ;)

Well I could go on.. but I gotta run.. Say hi to Clare and give her a nice OWN IT welcome! Clare, we expect you to be posting soon!

PS - that reminded me - I think everyone needs a lil intro.. Roll Call coming soon
OK now get back to owning it

Absolutely amazing....still shaking!

So, the detective just called me about my case that, if you follow your calendars, happened one year ago from this coming Saturday! I thought she was calling to check on me with the anniversary coming up, but no. She said that usually the DNA processing takes up to 18 months, but they rushed my case. So, they were able to get some DNA from my foot (don't ask). Turns out it matches an extremely similar case that occurred one week after mine, blocks from my old apartment. She was not so lucky.
What happens now? The DNA is reviewed (along with both cases) by the DNA analyst before it is entered into a system called Codis, first in my state, then in the US. The review can take a month, but it will take days if there are any "hits" on this person once it is entered into Codis.

This is amazing. I am a bit stirred right now, just knowing that he is still out there, but I could reach a completely peaceful point if this turns out the way I hope it does. Keep me in your prayers Saturday (is that selfish to ask?), and throughout this new process.

"Be content with what you have, for God has said, "Never will I leave you; Never will I forsake you". So say with confidence "The Lord is my Helper; I will not be afraid."
-Hebrews 13:5,6

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
-Jeremiah 29:11

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Everyone loves a find

doo dah doo.. you're welcome in advance. Just to prove that I too can find fun fashion for you gals... (ahem)..

here we have a former thrifter extraordinaire turned web guru.. bringing the fun of random finds to the web. whether its a vintage tee from the local thrift store, or an up and coming designer found at a trade show... Mod Cloth scours the globe for fun finds so we don't have to.

Now since this is My first attempt at sharing little fashion secrets with you I can't divulge everything all at once. But here we have a TREASURE trove of fun.. I am almost sorry to let this secret go because once this cat is out of the bag.. not many fun finds will compare.

I give you Shop Style. Here you can pull all sorts of items from different designers/brands/price ranges etc and mix and match. You can create your own looks and share them with other lovers of fashion. for example, here is a look I made over the summer called "Easy Weekend Bag":
Free People at ShopStyle

Now just because I love you gals so much - I am also sharing with you some of my personal FAVE finds...that I like to drool over and pretend that I can afford whenever I feel like it. As you can see I have a little addiction for jewelry more than anything else... doo dah dooooo... enjoy

The End ... Now stop salivating and get back to work!

Urban Dictionary

Did you know that Urban Dictionary has an entry for "own it"?? I'm oddly excited by this fact and had to share immediately.

Own it: Taking pride in what you got.

This sports-related-example is given: "Sox fans shouldn't get all hung up on chanting "Cubs suck", they shouldn't even acknowledge that there is a second team in town - Own it!!"


Have a great day and keep owning it!

[pic belongs to YWCA]

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Help Me Change the World!

Hi everyone... I just started a campaign for Charity:Water - you have prob seen the videos I have been posting about them. Please check out my page and make any contribution you possibly can - literally ever $1 helps.
Think about this:
$20 means one person can get clean water for 20 years.

Spread the word!!

Sand Animation

Monday, October 12, 2009

Future OWN IT women??

Happy Monday Ladies:)
I just wanted to share with you something I witnessed and was a part of yesterday...
My sister Maria runs a program here called Challenge Club. Its a national program that helps girls "grow in virtue, friendship, and their Catholic faith." We were a part of this when we were younger and that is why we are so passionate about sharing it here in little Beloit. It did amazing things for our faith.

Yesterday, I organized a service project for the girls to visit the homebound parishioners of their church. The response was AMAZING. These girls ages 5th-12th were so excited to share their joy, energy, and enthusiasm with some elderly in the community who rarely get to leave their home. I took a few of the girls to visit Tom and Eloise a couple who were in Long Term Care at the Hospital. They were overjoyed with our visit. They rarely see their three grown children. Eloise was in a fancy nightgown and she said her daughters birthday was today and she was coming to celebrate by bringing her "special soup"-too cute! When we asked to say the rosary with them she asked us to "pray that they could get well enough to return home....I never give up hope!" I looked at the Challenge Girls I brought with me and they literally had the joy of Christ in their hearts in that moment and I was moved to tears. These little ladies are the future women who will OWN their femininity and ability to love all they encounter with faith and hope in their hearts. 

Thursday, October 8, 2009


Can I just say how much I LOVE "Own It". I'm at home with my little guy (he's 9 months) during the day, working during his naps (marketing for an interior designer) and it is the best getting all of the updates from you inspiring ladies!!! Please keep it up!! I also am doing an online newsletter for young women, which Liza so sweetly gave a shout out about: and for our Holiday issue, I would love to have no other than you ladies shoot me a line or 2 of fun advice for our lovely readers for the Holidays! Hope to hear from you!

New Music to Love

Maybe you are already in the know about this band Vedera ?

I just happened upon them yesterday - and am hooked! Give them a listen. There new album is called Stages.

The lead singer Kristen May has an awesome voice...and the music reminds me of a hint of Taylor, a cup of Ingrid, splash of Regina and a sprinkle of Paramore. You're Welcome.

Fashionable Earth

Good morning ladies...or afternoon for those of you on the East Coast :-)

I hope all is well! I was hoping to get some support from you all…

I recently joined Fashionable Earth’s team and will be doing Advertisement writing and guest blog posts for them. It’s very exciting for me and one step closer to becoming a full-time writer.

To learn more about Fashionable Earth and how we believe in green/responsible fashion and giving to prolific organizations…click here.

So, if you get a chance…Could you please check out my posts and comment on them and if you tweet…follow:

Thanks friends!

There could never be a more beautiful you

This song has a great message... although I'm not sure that I totally get the video.

Jonny Diaz "More Beautiful You"

Don't you just love the lyrics?
Keep owning it!

ps- if you watch this and you do get the video, please explain it to me...

Friday, October 2, 2009

Be Radiant

Rose makes an awesome Magazine for women- now online.. and you Blogworld Gals should really be in the know.. You may recognize some faces & names from this last edition's contributors! :D Plus The fabulous Designer!... Own it. Love it. Live it. Radiate it.

Do u like a man in a suit?

So remember how I was here talking about women and their dignity not so long ago????? Well, I saw a perfect example of what dignity is NOT! Watch this......

Seriously? As obnoxious as this is, its not a joke! Yeh, "its only a commercial, relax," you may say. But MANY women are like that and even more men believe women are in this mindset. She goes on a date, has dinner/drinks/coffee, but yet she is less than impressed, feels unhappy, is slightly bored, and is definitely not taken with the guy- but she still lets the guy take her. What is up with that? What is she telling the guy? My initial answer is to say, "Uuuuum, I dont know- perhaps 'I'm a stupid girl, take advantage of me' ?". But I think I do know and I do not think women are stupid- I think that we are not owning self-respect nor demanding from men that we be treated in a better way. What we lack within ourselves to seek and demand love, respect, honor and dignity- we poorly attempt to recover by letting substandard treatment, relationships or hook ups replace as a substitute.

Its related to the "I'm not good enough, and I can't expect too much from him, so even though he doesn't really spark my interest or is not what I need- I'm going to be with him, sleep with him, date him, cater to him....whatever, b/c he's here and interested in me". And this my dear friends is something that men are catching on to more and more. I mean its a suit company commercial- and they know it! If you dont ask for it, and expect if from them, what else will a guy think? They know that women with poor self-esteem and absence of dignity will take a guy who may have little to be desired and primarily wants to sleep with her, b/c he's there and we don't hold ourselves, or them, to higher standards. And men suffer too, as they see women and themselves in a distorted and less than honorable light, lowering their attitude towards us and their expectation of themselves to something beneath who they truly are. And if we don't set them straight, this will continue on.

I dont want to get too philosophical and read into the implications of a commercial selling a "wonder suit" that gets the woman in bed on the supposed first date. But, this is not just a commercial about a guy wearing the right suit who gets the lady. It is telling men that they can win over a lady with no effort, intellect, manners, personality, nor wit, (ignore your dignity & dont set high standards for who you are or how you treat a lady) and just look decent and you're in (literally). And it makes women look like desperate idiots, who have no regard for themselves nor the capacity to make a choice based on what they want and what they know is good for them. I think both sides of the gender coin deserve more. A lot more.

"What should move us to action is human dignity: the inalienable dignity of the oppressed, but also the dignity of each of us. We lose dignity if we tolerate the intolerable"