"Being Her Mama Has Made Me Strong" "When life flips upside down, you can either hang there and accept it or fight to flip it back. I chose to fight. Yet, I didn’t make that choice right away. No, there was a solid few months of self pity, followed by anger, then fear, and then eventually, and quite surprisingly, strength. This is important, because we often think that we have to choose an emotion and react immediately. We can only be strong, angry, scared, silent, or happy. Yet, in reality, we are typically feeling all of these things, all at once. We have become experts at displaying one...

"I first started dancing around the age of 3." "Around the age 10 I started dancing at  Judy Dollenmayer Studio of Dance in Gahanna. I started out taking a basic ballet technique class, because at the time, I was determined to become the next prima ballerina. Then, I started to get interested in different styles. So, I enrolled in a lyrical dancing class and a competition jazz class. This was around the time Dance Moms was becoming popular.  The competition world fascinated me beyond words. Today, I am competing 15 different dances and spending 15 hours a week dancing in the studio. My name is Alexis Collier. I'm 17. Last year I decided...

"My name is Jenny Aquino and I was born and raised in Columbus. I am an avid Justin Timerblake and Gilmore Girls fan. I also love spending time with my family and friends. I am a first grade special education teacher at an amazing school. I really hope that my story can help others that may be experiencing a tremendous loss. The last 3 years have been really trying on my family, and I would love others to see that it’s possible to celebrate your lost loved ones. 2015 was an exceptionally tough year for my family. It started out incredible, on January 14th I got engaged to...

"I was a normal kid growing up. I cheered ever since I was little and did it all through school. I went to The Ohio State University for college. In 2015, my sophomore year of college,  I started experiencing numbness on the right side of my body.  All of a sudden my body couldn’t do what it used to do. I thought I was getting a cold or something. So, I went to the chiropractor's office where I lived, and they thought I had a pinched nerve in my neck. Which I did. But, the chiropractor saw me everyday for a week and I wasn’t getting better. I...

"I am a mother of 3 loving children. I have 2 girls and 1 boy who are the light of my life. I am also a mother with a child who has cerebral palsy and cancer. In June of 2017, a routine MRI turned into something no mother, father, or family should ever have to go through. Trey was born with cerebral palsy which led doctors to order a routine MRI. After the MRI my family and I sat in front of a doctor as he told us that they found a tumor. After completion of a biopsy, it was confirmed that not only did Trey have a...

It's the beginning of August and you realize you've been vacationing through other people's Facebook posts, but not a single vacation was one you actually took. Oops. But, luckily, there are still a few days left for some summer fun. I'm not saying vacations are a must, I'm actually against the planned, yearly trips, but I do think summer is the time where you check off some things on your bucket list. Because our kids are so young and we wanted to keep the spending to a minimum, we decided to do a little staycation. What is a staycation you might ask? Well, my definition is--a little vacation...

Part 1: The Brothers @buckeyevodka📷 Buckeye Vodka is an intentional well-thought-out product that was designed, developed, and founded by 4 brothers (well almost)---Brothers Jim & Chris Finke, Brother-in-law Tom Rambasek, and good friend and CFO Marty Clarke founded Crystal Spirits, LLC and developed the Buckeye Vodka brand. 🍁 I'm sure it's not hard to put together that they're Ohioans--I mean come on, they named their vodka "Buckeye".. for a reason. The Finke’s are fourth generation Ohioans from Dayton. Tom was raised in the suburbs of Cleveland, and all four were educated at different Ohio universities. 🍁 The distillery is located in Dayton where each bottle of vodka is hand-crafted by...

  [caption id="attachment_9448" align="aligncenter" width="300"] Photo Credit: Perfect Peace Photogrpahy[/caption] Monday, March 16th, 2015. I was a day shy of 19 weeks pregnant. I had finally started to accept that I was going to be a single mother. I was 28 years old and I had a decent job, after all. But I admit that in my heart of hearts, I still didn't love the idea of walking into that ultrasound alone. This was going to be the big one; the one where the doctor tells you that you're having a perfect little baby boy and sets you on track to revel in the bliss of impending motherhood...

"It was Friday the 13th of 2002, and the first anniversary of 9/11 was coming up, and I just kept having this dreaded feeling that Friday the 13th was going to be a really bad day. I had no idea why, so I went on with my day.  Lindsay came home from school and decided she was going to go work out with her best friend.   About an hour later after she left, the phone rang, and it was her best friend Morgan. She said, “Kathy, Lindsay fainted. You need to get over here right away.” She fainted at the gym on the treadmill.  So, at...

Meet Don & Claire [caption id="attachment_9326" align="aligncenter" width="537"] In Loving Memory of Claire Glass[/caption] "Claire was an amazing young lady, and I think it’s easy for a father to say that, but she truly was.  She was blessed with giftedness. She was extremely academically gifted. It was a challenge because when we realized she needed more, nobody believed us.  It wasn’t until the 2nd grade when we saw a psychiatrist, and they did an analysis of her and they basically said, she’s brilliant. When she was in 8th grade she scored a 30 on the ACT, and got a perfect score on the PSAT. You look at...