About Dani

Mom of two, Wife, Life & Wellness Coach, Blogger, Writer, Laughter lover, Motivator, Quasi Health Nut, Vacation Addict, Hair Care Junkie, Beach Bum Wannabe.
Writes about parenting, wellness, and marriage here and on other sites.

I Don’t Want to Blog About #Ferguson

…..and I’m not going to.

Not in full at least.

Many black women, more eloquent than I have written about it and have shared feelings and ideas that mirror my own.  I barely discussed Trayvon here, and I’m not going to get deep into Mike Brown either.

I was asked a question from my Ask Me Anything post that stopped me in my tracks though….and is now “forcing” me to write about Mike Brown’s murder (that’s what it was, shut up) even if tangentially.

Here’s the question:

What’s your opinion on this whole Mike Brown situation? Do you find yourself on a fence being that your husband is white and your children are biracial?

(Is the second part of this question absurd to you too, or is it just me?) My very first thought was full of snark, but I’ll spare you that and just say No.

No, I do not find myself “on a fence” about Mike Brown’s murder because my husband is white and our children are biracial, and I am unsure how those two things are related. Being inter-racially married doesn’t negate my blackness or my humanity. Further I’m unsure of what you mean about being “on a fence” with this issue. What possible fence could an educated, non-racist, open and aware person be on with regard to this child’s death?

As for the first part of the question….the “Mike Brown situation” gives me a lot of hope. Now, real talk…., that hope is buried deep under a heap of rage and disgust…but it’s there. And for my own mental and emotional health, that’s the part I have to choose to focus on.

Our sons (and daughters) are under attack from various angles (ex: segregation, media brainwashing/brain-numbing, unequal education, unfair sentencing etc…), and it makes the world a scarier place. I don’t want to get into this here. I don’t want to discuss the systematic racism, the reinforcing of black lives being less valuable than white lives, and the anger and powerlessness my people are feeling and have been feeling, the hard conversations I’m going to have to have with my children so they don’t get used for target practice too, the disgust and annoyance with white “friends” (read: ex friends) who just don’t “get” that this issue is about race and that racism is alive and well (and consistently reinforced) because “I mean like, we have a Black president.” I don’t want to talk about this shit here!

……… as I’m writing this, Rohan is sitting on the floor building and watching Daniel Tiger. A song just came on “close your eyes, and think of something happy”…….  LOL perfect Timing!


OK… lemme get back to the hope.

Now… I generally have little faith in the american public. I mean…we will get all up in arms on an issue for 5 minutes, and then Beyonce will make a song (or Robin Williams will die) and attention will shift back to things that don’t matter.

But something about this case is stirring people up differently. Maybe it’s the frequency…we had Trayvon…that died down, we had a few rumblings with other cases that didn’t get much attention… but very recently we had Eric Garner and not shortly after Mike Brown… maybe because the recency effect of these senseless (and you can’t tell me it’s not racially motivated) crimes against unarmed black men is getting higher, we’re getting angrier.

There’s not been time for the anger to simmer down. And that’s a good thing. Now, I’m not a fan of looting and burning shit down, but I am a fan of letting your rage out in a way that makes people pay some fucking attention. And it’s about time some attention is paid to this, and not by the same black and brown faces that have been paying attention before.

I have hope that this child’s murder will not be in vain. He has sparked more people to discuss racism, police abuse, and even more people to silently think about, read about if they’re too scared or ill-informed to discuss it. For that I am grateful, and hopeful.

More people are paying attention. And more will. I’m hopeful that more white moms and dads educate themselves and talk to their children about racism, and not just the “slavery and Dr. King” talks that mean absolutely nothing to a white child in 2014. I’m hopeful that more white folks will realize the subtle (not so subtle) racism that pervades everything in this damn country, openly discuss (versus deny) their white privilege and work to make this country a safe and fair place for everyone to live.

I’m hopeful that black and brown boys will continue to do what they need to to keep safe….well, as safe as possible, cuz stopping, putting your hands up, and being unarmed will still get you shot twice in the head…but…you catch my drift. I’m hopeful that parents of black children continue to educate them on what it means to be black in america right now and going forward. I am hopeful that those same parents choose to instill values into those black and brown children versus allowing the media to do so.

I’m just hopeful. It’s an awful circumstance, to spur what has been spurred in America right now…but I feel like we’re turning a corner, and some good stuff lies ahead.

I didn’t spell check/grammar check this, and I’m not gunna re-read this, so if I did any their/there/they’re mistakes, just forgive me and move on.

Back to the lighthearted shit tomorrow. My soul can’t take blogging about this stuff here.

Mind Right Monday Linkup


Hey girls! Thanks for joining Danielle, Darrica and I for this Mind Right Monday Linkup!! Just make a post with your goals for the week and what you’re grateful for, and you can link up below! (Unrelated posts…and posts leading to your own linkup….#tacky…. will be removed. FYI)

So how was your weekend? Mine was OK. My lil man wasn’t so good in the poop department, but I think he’s normalizing now. Yesterday my parents and brother came by and we had a lil bbq. Of course I got zero pics, except for one of Garrison and Rohan putting a puzzle together.

uncle and nephew doing a puzzle okdani

OK On to Mind Right Monday:

Let’s see how I did with last week’s goals:

  • Finish reading THIS BOOK from last week
  • Write my pieces before deadline and organize/send my invoices
  • Create content for my August 18th challenge group (wanna join us?!)
  • Work out every day and drink water like it’s my job
  • Blog at least 4 times
  • Make another learning game from Pinterest for Roey
  • Clean up the house (so Roey can rip it apart and I can clean it up again…fml)
  • Take Roey to the park a few times and to the library I just discovered was nearby our place
  • Get to Staples and stock up on all the back to school deals for my biz supplies and Roey’s homeschool supplies
  • Get more clients enrolled in my next two challenge groups
  • Advertise to recruit new beachbody coaches onto my team

I did great!!

My goals for the week:

  • Continue reading THIS BOOK along with John and do some of the exercises
  • Workout daily
  • Blog at least 4 times
  • Write my pieces before deadline and start my personal writing project up again
  • Get more items sent to goodwill and organize a little more
  • Get a haircut/straighten and do something else to pamper me
  • Enjoy my family reunion
  • Look for new vegetarian meals to try
  • Get to Target for last items I need for Roey’s “preschool” adventure

I am extremely grateful for: 

  • Rohan being healthy
  • The kids surviving their shots on Friday
  • Kaya being old enough for earrings *squeee*
  • Writing jobs, Beachbody earnings, Blog earnings, Coaching earnings
  • Househunting *squeeeee*
  • The “high” that comes from a good workout
  • Our cheap lil grill from The Home Depot coming thru for us this weekend
  • Roey trying new foods even if it’s one bite and then spit out “Dont yike it, mommy”
  • My lil bro just being awesome and having a bright future
  • You readers coming through with TONS of questions for me
  • Being able to be home with my children (I’m grateful for this more and more each day)
  • Friends old and new, and the bloggy friends I’ve made lately

(And if you’re not a blogger, it’s all good, just post a comment below with your #1 goal for the week and something you’re grateful for!)


Moms Fitness Challenge: Mind Over Matter

Today’s Fit Friday post is by my friend Erma, the genius behind the best pomades I’ve ever used.. and PS She has great hair! Check it out and leave your comments below!
I’m tired.
My body aches.
I’m out of breath.
We have probably uttered these and similar statements during or after workouts.  When we make statements like these, we are referencing how we physically feel.  However, research from the Centre for Clinical Interventions suggests that our thoughts and beliefs influence our emotions and actions.  This is often the case concerning fitness.  There are some of us who wake up pumped to exercise, while others of us need a few pushes.  Whatever the case, our thoughts affect the ease or difficulty of our endeavors.
It’s natural for new moms to have self-defeating thoughts.  You may not be feeling sexy after the baby, but you can recapture the confidence you need to start working out again.  Remember, you are the woman who carried a baby in your stomach for nine months.  You are the woman who raised other children while carrying that baby in your stomach for nine months.  You are the woman who structured a household while pregnant.  You can conquer a fitness routine.  You can do this!
What, do you ask, is the first step to mastering the fitness challenge?  Be aware of your thoughts.  “Being aware of your feelings and your thoughts is the first step towards feeling better”, according to the Centre for Clinical Interventions.  It makes sense, too. Reflect on how often you feel like you can conquer the world after you’ve fed yourself thoughts of disempowerment.  Probably never.  You can reverse those thoughts, though.  Just think about all the reasons you have to feel and be empowered.  Remember the people depending on Mommy.  You can’t be the best to and for them if you are struggling to stay afloat emotionally.
Take control of your thoughts the way you take control of your kids.  When Mommy says “no more”, that’s it. Let it be the same way with your thoughts.  Allow no room for negative feelings.  Greatness is on the other side of that wall of disheartenment.  Kick it down with your running shoes and keep going.
Erma Williams-Nurse is an avid writer whose topics of interest include hair, health, and fitness.  In addition to exercising her love of the written word, she is also the owner of The Pomade Shop.

Q and A: How do you teach your kids?

your baby can read

 (he was supposed to be sleeping. I check the monitor and caught him reading to his stuffed animals!)

Well, you guys sure showed up in full force with the questions! Keep em coming. I’ll get to them all.  (Even the triflin’ ones!)

One question I was asked was “How are you teaching Rohan? Are you using a curriculum?”

I’m assuming it’s someone I’m friends with on FB who saw homeschooling posts there but either way…. I was planning to write a post on my intent to home school eventually.

I teach Rohan through play. We have never done drills or flashcards or anything like that. (Tho I tried making them before, and that didn’t work out too well.) We talk a lot. We read a lot. A WHOLE LOT and from that he memorized his numbers and his alphabet. I honestly didn’t know he knew them by heart until my mom started asking him last thanksgiving and he was pointing them all out correctly.  Then one day John was wearing an army shirt and he pointed to each letter and made the sounds like he was trying to phonetically read A-R-M-Y.  I was like…oh…I guess I should start being more diligent with this kid. Clearly babies can learn through experience a lot earlier than I expect.

He learned his letters/numbers colors, shapes, animals and most of his words through books we’ve read too… and songs.  (kidztv123 on youtube is great!! He learned his letter sounds through their phonics song I think.) I don’t think we need to do anything more than educational play at this point. He is 2. I will ask him to run and find things that start with a certain letter and bring to me while I’m cooking, or we’ll play I spy something red or whatever…  (Sometimes he will bring me the phone for letter F…I just praise him all the same) But mostly it’s books.

baby reader

I don’t have a curriculum, but I did buy two pre-K books just to see what is in them and how I could incorporate the lessons into our playtime as he gets older.

This one is laminated and he writes in it, “reads” it on his own, and will just sit and stare at the trucks.

This one has perforated pages and is definitely more of a pre-school workbook, so we just look at it and I ask him questions about it or ask him to tell me what’s going on in the picture, and will ask him why, just to see what he says.  There’s a little girl in the rain with an umbrella in one of the pictures, so I asked him what she’s holding, he said “uhbella” I asked why and he goes “cuz her mommy gave her!” and started clapping like it was the right answer. :) Eventually we will use it as it’s intended, maybe when he’s 3 or so.

We recently got abcmouse.com (or Mousdacom as Roey calls it) and he’s doing the toddler/preschool “lessons” in it, which are just letter and number games and opportunities to color in pictures and hear songs. He likes it a lot and will tell me he’s “working.”

Outside of that it’s just playing with him and he learns his concepts through that, reading and a lot of detailed talking. I try to go by what he’s interested in. He likes letters a lot, he likes vehicles, puzzles, coloring/painting, magnets and he likes building. He just plays all day and will help me cook or clean up (kinda) so he learns through that as well.

But I plan on home schooling with a dedicated curriculum once he turns 4. By then I expect he’ll be ahead of the curve anyway since he seems to soak up and retain so much.  Til then I’m going to keep playing, keep reading, keep introducing new things to him, and keep scouring Pinterest for ideas.

  pinterest alphabet game toddlers okdani blog

We made an alphabet game so he could match his capital and lower case numbers…..The one on Pinterest looked a lot better than mine, but hey it still worked!

I also let him start watching TV about 8 months or so ago. Sesame St., Sid the Science Kid, Daniel Tiger, and a few shows on Sprout. I was very anti TV for babies, but he’s learned a lot from those shows. (I think Sid …and John… is how he got obsessed with magnets).

How do you teach your kids?

Any tips for me on how to teach reading and Spanish?

Ask Me Anything!



I’m completely stealing this idea from another blogger who did an “Ask Me Anything” post a while back. It was a great way for us to get to know her better, and also provided content for her to write about. (yes…i’m totally using you to help give me blogging ideas…gotta problem?)

So, I’m copycatting. Cuz I feel like I’ve hit a wall of sorts. Every time I sit down to talk to you girls, I just want to talk about what’s going on in my beachbody biz and I know that’s not all you want to hear about. I refuse to be that girl.

OKDani is opened up to your questions. Ask anything you want to know, big or small, general or personal. You can email me at okaydani@gmail.com or ask in the comments. Or if you want to ask anonymously, fill out the form below:



Talk to you soon!

What’s the funniest/weirdest question you’ve been asked?

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