Blog Book Review

Book Review: The Truths We Hold by Kamala Harris

Before Kamala Harris had made her announcement that she was running for president in January 2019, I had not heard of her previously. Do I follow politics? Somewhat. However, I definitely pay more attention now in my adult years than when I was a teen.

From what I heard about her, especially from radio listeners who would call into the New York-based morning radio show, “The Breakfast Club” was that many people didn’t like her because she was a prosecutor and, “she locked up a lot of black people” as callers would put it.

She went on the radio show in July of 2019, and I listened to her interview, but there was something about her that, as much as I wanted to try to like her, I couldn’t. And I couldn’t figure out what it was. So, when she announced she was dropping out of the presidential race in December of the same year, I didn’t think anything of it. Again, there was something about her that didn’t fit well with me.

Fast forward to when Joe Biden announcing that she was his pick for Vice President, she once again made history. I started to look into her. In my search, I found that she had written a book, “The Truths We Hold: An American Journey,” knowing my love for books, and especially memoirs, I bought it.

It was a good read, my favorite book, no, but I would recommend it for anyone who wants to know more about her work as a Prosecutor, District Attorney of San Francisco, Attorney General of California, and then-Senator of California. Also, to learn more about her upbringing, which shaped her thoughts and actions. 

As District Attorney

With the help of her colleague Tim, when she was district attorney, they created a program called “Back on Track.” The program was to help people who were released from jail with an end goal of them not ending up in jail again. She stated she received backlash from it because she was told, “prosecutors’ job is to put people away and not worry about what happens to them afterward.” But this was not Harris’s approach.

Those who wanted to participate would first have to plead guilty and accept responsibility for their actions. After they completed the program, they would get their charges expunged. The first participants of the program were all nonviolent first-time offenders.

Her reason for this program was to make sure that they would not end up back in jail like the statistics show they would. Within three years from being released, 70% of people would end up committing crimes again.

Participants received their GED, completed community service, helped fathers pay outstanding child support; all participants had to get drug tested throughout the program, which provided job training, therapy, parenting classes, and financial literacy classes.

What was even better about the program was the cost-effectiveness of running it. Harris wrote that the program cost about $5,000 per participant, compared to $100,000 to prosecute a felony case and another $40,000 to house someone in the county jail for a year. This seems like a better use for taxpayers’ money.

As Attorney General of California

As Attorney General of California, she helped homeowners of California during the foreclosure fiasco around the country. The banks’ settlement to California homeowners was 2 to 4 billion dollars, but she pushed and brought it up to 20 billion. She mentions in detail the meeting she had with the banks’ attorney during the whole process. 

One particular issue that I found interesting that she focused on was elementary school truancy. She explained that third grade reading proficiency is essential because studies show that up until the point of third-grade, children are being taught to read; after that, they are reading to learn. But if students miss too many days of school before third grade, they are not learning to read, and if they can’t read, they can’t learn.

The domino effect of this was that the data shows that 80% of prisoners were high school dropouts from California’s prisons. Why were they dropping out? Because they were falling behind starting in elementary school from missing too many days. She then focused on figuring out why the kids were missing school and then providing resources to the parents, usually single mothers, to help raise the children’s attendance. Although, this plan did backfire a bit because there were parents who did end up getting arrested for kid’s missing school. Harris has addressed this, in interviews and said that she regretted that happened because that wasn’t her intentions.

In Summary

Harris spoke about many issues that need to be addressed after that, like immigration, medical drug prices, access to healthcare, professional mental health specialist storage, biases in the healthcare field, and the opioid crisis, which has killed over 350,000 Americans in the last two decades.

She gets personal when speaking about the pain of losing her mother to cancer, which many of us can relate to. #CancerSucks

Overall, it is a good read, and I enjoyed it. Let me know if you’ve read it and what your thoughts are.

With Love,


Let’s Connect!

Like this post? Subscribe with your email to receive my posts straight to your inbox! 🙂


Top 3 Topics to Discuss Before Getting Married

Picture this…. you’ve been dating someone for a few months, or maybe a few years. And everything seems to be going perfectly. There have been barely any arguments, only a few disagreements. It looks like this person is the person that finally gets you. They understand you when you express yourself. You can be your complete self with them, and they don’t judge you. It seems like you’re in heaven. You know everything about this person, and they know everything about you, so it’s a no-brainer to say yes when they pop the big question, “will you marry me” but do you know everything about them?

It’s impossible to know EVERYTHING about a person but before you walk down the aisle to marry this person and start a life together, have you guys discussed the important topics before knowing for sure that this person is the one?

I am no marriage expert by any means, but my husband and I did attend premarital counseling before we got married. We read “Preparing for Marriage: Discover God’s Plan for a Lifetime of Love” by David Boehm, Brent Nelson, Jeff Schulte, and Lloyd Shadrach while doing counseling and all the topics in the book we had already discussed throughout our dating life. I highly recommend doing premarital counseling before getting married because when people marry, they don’t usually marry to get divorced after a few years. Still, too many couples do end up divorced.

Here are three topics that should be discussed before getting married.


Photo by Karolina Grabowska on

You may think you know everything about your fiancé. Still, you’d be surprised at what you’d find out when you ask questions or things that might come to light later because they didn’t think it was a big deal to say before getting married, which is why it is important to talk about everything pertaining to their history.

For example, personal history, like where did they grow up, went to school, etc.? Family history, are they close to their family, were both parents around and just one, etc.? Family history plays a significant role in people’s personalities, so this is important. Sexual history, your significant other should be open about this with you; if they aren’t, that may be a red flag, but that is a whole different topic.

Talk about previous relationships, how did they end and why did they end? This is important because wounds and trauma of earlier relationships affect present or future relationships even when people think they are ‘over it.’ Do they still communicate with their exes? If so, why, how often? Sometimes relationships don’t end on bad terms, and some exes may stay as friends but discuss with your partner how comfortable you are with this. Also, were they previously married, are there kids from that marriage, why did they divorce? You’d be surprised at how many people don’t really think this is a big deal to discuss. Ask questions!


Photo by Skitterphoto on

We’ve heard the statistics before that the main reason why couples divorce is because of finances. And if you are at the point of being engaged, I’m going to assume you both have had some discussion about finances, like who earns more money. If not, definitely need to have this talk, and also, does it matter to the other person who earns more.

 Men are usually labeled as the ‘provider’ of the family, so it is common or the ‘norm’ for them to earn more, but that isn’t always the case. Have this discussion early and make sure no egos are hurt if the woman earns more money. At the end of the day, finances should be ‘ours,’ not his and hers, although every household is different.

How will the finances look in your household? Will there be one joint account, maybe his and her accounts? Some couples have one together and then each of their own. Many couples do finances differently, which is okay; you don’t have to do what your other married friends do. Come up with a plan that works for you both, that you both agree. 

Other questions to ask: Who will pay the bills? All of the bills or just some? Who spends more? Can you guys stick to a budget? Please talk about the debt’s you guys have, since after marriage, it becomes debt for both. What is your partner’s credit score? Are you willing to help them if they have bad credit? It’s essential to get these questions out the way first and set a plan for the future, so this doesn’t become an issue in the long run. 


This may seem like a no-brainer, but expectations should be discussed because you two are two individuals coming together as one, and you both think differently and might have different expectations for this marriage. It’s better to get them out now before the wedding than during a heated argument.

The book has a great worksheet that you can do with your finance about your expectations for every area of your life. The worksheet about expectations starts by stating, “Expectations are so basic that we often don’t even recognize them, yet they influence our behavior every day – how we treat people, how we react to different situations.” Speaking about expectations to your significant other is vital prior to getting married.

Let me give you some examples of areas and questions discussed:

Marriage and Relationship: How will decisions be made and how will disagreements get resolved?

Home: where will you guys live and what type of home does this look like?

Social/Entertainment and Home Environment: how often will people be invited to the home, and how often will date night be? How will the television be watched, and are there any guidelines about what is watched? Who has hobbies? What are they? Will they be done together, or will this be something always done individually?

I have an excellent example on this one; my hobbies are reading and writing, and before I post any blogs, my husband reads them over to make sure I didn’t miss any grammar errors or need to change anything. Before I write, I discuss the topics with him and sometimes get his insight on things too. When I’m reading a book, I’ll discuss anything I find interesting with him, or he sometimes asks me questions about the book. He takes an interest in what my hobbies are. One of his hobbies is to watch boxing, I’m not a big fan, but I’ll ask him questions, or I’ll watch a boxing match with him; I also put an effort to be a part of his hobbies.

One of the hobbies we have in common is that we like the same sports team, so we enjoy attending those games together and watching them together.

Hubby & I at a Yankee’s spring training game March 2020

Ok, now more questions and examples from the book:

Household Responsibilities: Who will cook, clean, laundry? This is a big one because we are no longer in the 1950s when women did not work.

Parenting/Children: How many children, if any? When do start having children? How will you discipline your children?

These are a few examples of the expectations that should be discussed before getting married; the book does an excellent job at going more in-depth on more topics, which sometimes you don’t think you need to discuss until the time comes. Still, it’s better to discuss before so you know where each of you stands when it does come.

Final Thoughts

Photo by Pixabay on

As my husband and I were going through the book, and we were answering the questions, some of them I knew how he would respond because we had talked about it before, but it gave me such peace of mind that I was making the right decision with marrying this man. Even though I knew he was the one, he’s the man I prayed for….more about this on a later post, LOL. But I want the same reassurance for you. I want you to feel secure that when any challenge comes your way, which they will, that you guys will face them together, not against each other.

Marriage isn’t the same as being in a relationship, it’s much more profound, and it’s a more significant commitment. You are making a promise to share your life with this person as long as you both shall live. That is not something to be taken lightly.

A book all couples should read is “The Five Love Language, By Gary Coleman.” Yes, you can take the quiz online to know each other’s love language, but I suggest you guys read it together. This way, you get an idea of how to fill up each other’s love tanks and keep them full. 🙂

With Love,


Let’s Connect!

Like this post? Subscribe with your email to receive my posts straight to your inbox! 🙂

Blog Spiritual

God’s Perfect Timing (Guest Post)

Hello friends! I am so excited about today’s blog because it is my first time hosting a guest writer on my blog!!! I am beyond excited to host such a fantastic writer/author Alexis A. Goring; she “is a passionate writer with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She loves the art of storytelling and hopes that her stories will connect readers with the enduring, forever love of Jesus Christ”. 

Please enjoy this devotional by Alexis A. Goring!

There’s this beautiful song by Juanita Bynum in which she declares that she doesn’t mind waiting on the Lord! She says that it is an honor to wait on Him. She tells the listener that sometimes in life, you will face situations where you don’t know what to do or who to turn to and you see that no human can help you. But that’s when she reminds us about God’s promise to all those who wait on Him. 

You can read about that promise in Isaiah 40:31 and be encouraged that no matter what you may face in this life, you always can turn to God and He will help you. God has all the answers! Not only does He know your every need; He is perfectly capable of meeting each one (Philippians 4:19)! And He always does meet your needs and grant the desires of your heart that are according to His will … in His perfect time.

My maternal grandmother used to say, “God may not come when you want Him to but He’s always on time!” The older I get and the more seasoned by life situations I become, the more I remember her words that she spoke when she was alive, and the more I realize she was right!

But sometimes when I listen to this song “I Don’t Mind Waiting,” my inner dialogue with God admits, “But Lord, sometimes I do mind waiting!” My conversations about waiting with God hit on core issues that most young adults in America and around the world face. 

Conversations that touch on topics like landing a job that you trained for (or in some cases, especially during this pandemic, any job that pays the bills and keeps you afloat financially). If you’re single and believe in marriage then you’re wondering when you’ll get married. If you’re married but struggling to have children or have suffered miscarriages then you’re wondering when you and your spouse will have a baby. If you’re widowed then you may be wondering if you’re ever going to find true love again. If you’re elderly and the people who you loved through life have all died then you’re wondering if you’re next. If you’re still growing up then you’re wondering when you’ll be able old enough to do all the things you’ve seen adults do (though you’re probably not dreaming about having to pay bills, support yourself financially, manage a home, and hold down a steady job). Point is: We’re all waiting on someone or something. The good news is, when you wait on the Lord you will not be disappointed because He always comes through on time. The Bible says the He will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). The God of the Universe is also the Maker of your heart and He loves you with all of His Heart.

Now when someone loves you with all of their heart, and they have a proven track record of taking care of you then you don’t have to worry, right? Well, if that person is a mere mortal then yes, you do need to worry because only God cannot fail (Matthew 19:26). We as humans try our best to be there for people who we love and a lot (not all) of us try our best to keep our promises. However, we’re only human. Only God is completely capable of being there for us 24/7/365. Only God will never lie to us (Numbers 23:19). Only God keeps all of His promises that you can read about in His Word (The Holy Bible). Therefore, we can conclude that God is trustworthy.

As life teaches you more lessons and you grow up in your walk with the Lord, you will see that you can wait on Him and you can trust Him. You will learn to be content with what you have and be at peace wherever He’s put you. Patience will grow within you like a small seed planted deep in soil and over time, that seed will sprout into a deeply rooted tree that is tall, strong and unmoved by the winds and strife of life. Why? Because you were deeply rooted in God’s Word. You rely on His promises so you know you have nothing to fear. And as you wait on the Lord and He “shows up and shows out” for you, then you will see firsthand that His timing is perfect!

Please be encouraged to know God loves you, He’ll never leave you, and rest assured that He will always come through for you in every way. It may not be on your timetable (who are we to tell the King of the Universe to adhere to our manmade schedules?) but it will be in in His perfect time. 

In closing, I’d like for you to read this insightful article about why God’s timing is perfect. 

And remember this quote:

“Be patient because God has perfect timing. Too often we forget just how big God really is…the same God that makes the stars shine and keeps the planets in motion loves you and knows exactly where and when you’ll be happiest. He’s always working for your good and only wants what’s best for you. God was, is and always will be … just trust Him and rest in His grace.” ~Author Unknown

Thank you so much Alexis for being a guest writer on my blog, I hope you will share more beautiful devotionals in the future. If you’d like to connect with Alexis I’ll share her social media handles. And if you’d like to be a guest contributor on my blog just send me an email, I’d love to collaborate with you!







“God is Love” (blog):

“On My Heart” (blog):

With Love,


Let’s Connect!

Like this post? Subscribe with your email to receive my posts straight to your inbox! 🙂


I Needed Help….

There’s such a stigma with mental illness that I was afraid to say and admit I needed help. I’ve suffered from depression, and I’ve suffered from anxiety. Although it wasn’t until I got into a new relationship that I realized I need to get help if I want this relationship to work and flourish.

So did I do it for myself, or did I do it for the relationship? I’m not entirely sure, but I’m glad I got the help, and I believe I needed his support to get the courage to do it.

Prior to the relationship, I had started in-person therapy because I needed answers about my depression. My mom was bipolar, but no one knew until she got diagnosed about a year and a half before she passed, and from my own studies of psychology, I learned that bipolar disorder could be hereditary; I freaked out. During one of my therapy sessions, I asked if I was at risk of developing bipolar disorder. She informed me that my depression seems to be more situational than inherited. That was a relief because I, too, would experience mood swings. So bad and to the point that my parents would tell me that no significant other would put up with that. But little did anyone know that God had a person for me who would help me get the help I needed to figure out why the mood swings. 😉

I had just always thought I was moody, that having those mood swings was a part of me, and that’s it, but that wasn’t the case at all; it was all tied to my trauma. But of course, no one was going to tell me that unless I went to therapy and talked with a professional. And bipolar disorder is much more than just mood swings, which of course, I learned about later.

I could also connect where my anxiety came from, and it’s all from my upbringing and not having stability with my mom or security. You see, our childhood plays a significant part in our personality and who we become as adults. Something probably a lot of people don’t understand.

I love psychology, and I love learning about how the brain works, which is why I decided to get a double major in psychology and healthcare administration. I am also a therapy advocate because of how it helped me. But you have to be willing to put in the work in order for therapy to work. You have to be able to really open up and be honest about your thoughts and feelings, which is completely hard because being vulnerable is hard.

The in-person therapy finished after a few sessions because I didn’t feel a connection with her. Not saying she wasn’t a good therapist, but you don’t have a connection with everyone. I decided to do online therapy, which I had done years prior when I found out about my ex-partner’s affairs. is the online therapy platform I used. It was beneficial, so I was hoping for the same results this time around.

Since I wanted to start from childhood, we would schedule one-hour phone sessions every week until I had told my story entirely up until that point in time. She was amazed at all I had been through at such a young age and told me she was surprised my mental state wasn’t worse than what it was. She also mentioned that I should write a book about everything that she knows it could be a best-seller. I’ve kept that in mind but haven’t started.

She made me feel comfortable; she never judged; she acknowledged how I felt and validated it. It was nice to talk to someone who didn’t judge and didn’t try to minimize my trauma by comparing stories or telling me that others have or had it worse. After each session, I would talk to Jonathan about it and how I felt. It was like he was included also.

Sharing your story is a personal choice. Everyone goes through challenges in life, traumas, and bad experiences, but all those situations shape us somehow. They make us stronger, learn lessons, and know what not to do if it ever comes up again. By sharing your story, you can heal from it, and you can help others who might have gone through similar situations. You might be surprised at how many others understand how you feel or understand the situation you went through. We are all trying to figure this thing called life together.

With Love,


Resources for mental health help:

SAMHSA’s National Helpline  1-800-662-HELP (4357) – from there website, “SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.”

Let’s Connect!

Like this post? Subscribe with your email to receive my posts straight to your inbox! 🙂