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It’s OK to Let Go!

As we enter into a new season, it is a time to re-evaluate things in our lives. Our relationships, our mindset, our bodies, our jobs, our businesses… our time. Time is the most invaluable commodity we are awarded, yet we waste it away as if it is replaceable. Fall has always interested me. With all the beautiful hues of reds, browns, and oranges; the basic concept is death.

Unfortunately, nature has a way of personifying itself to speak volumes to those prepared to be attentive. Autumn, the precursor to death (winter), is arguably the most beautiful season for nature to express herself. My lesson is, in life there must be constant renewal. At the expense of this rejuvenation, some things in my life are not meant to carry on to the next year. Releasing the baggage can help you to live a longer, healthier and sustainable life.

What in your life do you need to let go? Take time to evaluate things, people, and activities in your life. Are they there for the release and lessons learned or to carry on to the next year? It may take some courage, but the decision to “let go” falls in line with our God given gift of free will. You have the choice, make it! At times, the choice is to “Let Go!”

Atlanta Award Program Honors the Achievement

Divas In Defense Receives 2015 Best Businesses of Atlanta Award
Atlanta Award Program Honors the Achievement

Atlanta, November 23, 2015 — Divas In Defense has been selected for the 2015 Best Businesses of Atlanta Award in the Martial Arts category by the Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program.

Each year, the Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Atlanta area a great place to live, work and play.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2015 Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program and data provided by third parties.

About the Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program

The Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Atlanta area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.

The Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program was established to recognize the best of local businesses in our community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to recognize the small business community’s contributions to the U.S. economy.

SOURCE: Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program
Best Businesses of Atlanta Award Program

The Purple Pocketbook

With a mission to change the world one app download at a time, Alicia Carr has developed an app that has the ability to save lives. Alicia Carr, born and raised in New York City now Georgia resident, has known since a young girl that she wanted to be a computer programmer. While Alicia and her family were living in Germany on a military base, Alicia began to take apart old computers, fix them then putting them back together. She has had multiple occupations that involved technological literacy, including administrative assistant and help desk supporter.  As Alicia was employed as an administrative assistant, she found a young man to mentor her on how to develop apps.

Alicia’s mentor gave her the idea of developing an app to assist women in abusive relationships. Alicia immediately connected with the idea since she had seen domestic violence first hand. Unfortunately, Alicia watched her mother, family members and friends fall victim to domestic violence. She was motivated to memorialize her best friend, Catina, who lost her life while attempting to end an abusive relationship. Alicia decided to combine her new learned skills and long- time passion for domestic violence prevention to create The Purple Pocketbook App.

Alicia chose The Purple Pocketbook because the color purple represents domestic violence prevention, and the first thing a woman grabs when she leaves her house is her pocketbook. Also women carry a variety of resourceful items in their purses, similar to the variety of resources located on the app.  The Purple Pocketbook App was designed to help women strategize an exit plan when women decided leave a domestic violence relationship. The app provides multiple resources such as location of shelters, Georgia state laws and hotline numbers. When asked about the intentional impact of The Purple Pocketbook, Alicia responded by saying, “I would be grateful if I can save just one life.” In the future, Alicia plans to grow and develop The Purple Pocketbook Foundation. Alicia’s foundation intends to follow the same mission as her app, but with a team behind her. The Purple Pocketbook is available for download in ITunes and Google Play Store for free.

For more info on Alicia Carr and The Purple Pocketbook follow her on social media



Safely Exercise

Spring is here, and many of us enjoy going outside for some well deserved fresh air and exercise. The following list outlines very basic, common sense safety tips, so that you may be safe and get in shape.

1. Identification — Carry some form of identification on you. Most exercise gear have small pockets for this very reason. Ideally, you should have your driver’s license and/or a small card that lists your number and the number of an emergency contact.

2. Telephone — Having your telephone with you can help to keep you in touch with family and friends and, if necessary, connect you with emergency services. In cases where cell phone reception is not good or your phone runs out of battery, then it would be great to carry some change for a payphone or even have a phone card tucked away with your identification.

3. No valuable jewelry — Wearing expensive jewelry may bring unwanted attention to you and make you a target of thieves, so leave the fancy watch, rings, earrings, etc. back at home.

4. Partners — Exercising with a partner or group greatly reduces your chance of being targeted. Also, if one of you should get injured or sick, then the other is available to get help and reduce your vulnerability.

5. Know your route — It is best to be very familiar with your exercise route and know where there are any areas which may be potentially dangerous. Running or riding a trail path, even if you know it well, has its dangers — lurking threats, animals and injuries in isolated areas. It is best to travel these with a partner or at least map out your route using your smart phone’s map feature.

6. Family or Friends — Someone close to you should know when you are exercising, where you are exercising and when you are expected back.

7. Vary routes — You should have a few routes which you are very familiar with and change these up so that you are not predictable to someone who may be watching you.

8. Dogs are your best friend — If you own a large dog, then taking him with on a jog helps to deter people from approaching you. Plus, the dog benefits from the extra exercise. If you don’t own a dog, maybe borrow one from a friend or neighbor!

9. Pay attention to your surrounding — It is great to get into the “zone” while exercising, but make sure to stay aware of where you are, who is around you and where you are going.

10. Run against traffic and bike with traffic — This ensures that you are most visible to cars, buses and trucks. When possible, run on sidewalks away from traffic and ride in designated biking lanes.

11. No playlists on headphones — As tempting as it is to help pass the time, don’t wear headphones while exercising outdoors. Your ability to pay attention to potential threats from traffic, barking dogs and other people is greatly reduced when you are listening to music. Wearing headphones also signals to potential threats that you are preoccupied and vulnerable.

12. Be visible — If exercising in the dark then make sure to wear bright reflective clothing. There are many products on the market with reflective material — hats, headbands, vests, arm bands, tops, shorts/pants and shoes.

13. Keep moving — If verbally harassed or called out by an individual or group it is best to keep on moving. If the verbal harassment becomes a physical threat then get to the nearest safe place — business, home or building.

Internet Safety for Children and Teens


Though these tips are designed for children and teens, many of these tips are applicable to adults. You can never be too SAFE!


  • Personal Information. Don’t give out personal information without your parents’ permission. This means you should not share your last name, home address, school name, or telephone number. Remember, just because someone asks for information about you does not mean you have to tell them anything about yourself!
  • Screen Name. When creating your screen name, do not include personal information like your last name or date of birth.
  • Passwords. Don’t share your password with anyone but your parents. When you use a public computer make sure you logout of the accounts you’ve accessed before leaving the terminal.
  • Photos. Don’t post photos or videos online without getting your parents’ permission.
  • Online Friends. Don’t agree to meet an online friend unless you have your parents’ permission. Unfortunately, sometimes people pretend to be people they aren’t. Remember that not everything you read online is true.
  • Online Ads. Don’t buy anything online without talking to your parents first. Some ads may try to trick you by offering free things or telling you that you have won something as a way of collecting your personal information.
  • Downloading. Talk to your parents before you open an email attachment or download software. Attachments sometimes contain viruses. Never open an attachment from someone you don’t know.
  • Bullying. Don’t send or respond to mean or insulting messages. Tell your parents if you receive one. If something happens online that makes you feel uncomfortable, talk to your parents or to a teacher at school.
  • Social Networking. Many social networking websites (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) and blog hosting websites have minimum age requirements to sign up. These requirements are there to protect you!

Couplepreneurship: Successfully Working with Your Spouse

Mixing business and pleasure can be a dangerous combination. My spouse and I have been couplepreneurs for over 6 years. It took us a few years to make it work. Over the years I have met other couplepreneurs and learned we shared similar challenges when working with our spouses. I would not trade it for anything in the world but it wasn’t easy. Here are a few tips to keeping the sanity when working with your significant other:

  1. Write down your expected roles and responsibilities: This is your first step. You need to understand the expectations of each other and what roles you will play in the business. You will need to write down your job descriptions and responsibilities.
  2. Create business hours and home hours: I am not a believer in the work-life balance myth but I do think you need to set boundaries. Create “office hours” and family hours to make sure you give dedicated time to your business and your family.
  3. Create official business meeting times: You need to schedule a daily, weekly or twice a week meeting just like you would at a corporate job. You need to make sure you bring challenges and success stories to the meeting. Run it like a real business and not a hobby.
  4. Remember you are spouses first and business partners second: Love each other and remember that you are spouses first. The business is important but your relationship is more important. Put down the phone sometimes and spend time with your spouse.
  5. Schedule “No Business” vacations: Quarterly my husband and I have a staycation in our city. We are not allowed to talk about businesses during this time. It is important that you stay connected with each other.
  6. Remember that everyone makes mistakes: You and your spouse are not perfect. Remember to treat each other fairly and speak to each other with respect. Talk about the issue and find a solution together.
  7. Celebrate together: It is easy to work hard to build your dreams together. You have to take the time to celebrate your success along the way {both big and small}. It is no fun if you cannot enjoy the good times together.

Working together can be a great experience if you remember not to sweat the small stuff and have fun along the way.

911 Fails to Locate GPS Signal

On a clear afternoon, Shanell Anderson delivered newspapers in Cherokee, GA, a few miles from Fulton county. Shanell’s car ran off the road into a lake. Unfortunately, Shanell became trapped in her car, so she called 911 from her cell phone for help. She told the 911 dispatcher exactly where she was, including the lake name and the streets intersecting. With all of the information Shanell gave, the dispatcher was unable to locate her coordinates. It took the police 19 minutes to locate the pond and an additional 29 minutes to find Shantell’s car where she laid unconscious.

I’m sure you are wondering why the police were not able to locate Shanell quicker. 911 uses a computer aided dispatch called GIS (Geographic Information System). GIS stops at city lines, which is why the dispatcher was unable to locate Shanell. Even though Shanell was not in Alpharetta county, her cell phone signal was sent there. This disabled Alpharetta county’s map ability.

It is important to know that cell phones don’t transmit GPS signals to dispatchers, they have to extract the GPS signal from the cell phone. The Senate and Congress are progressively working to improve this defect. It is also import that we are always conscious of our location and close landmarks, so if this situation was to arise we will be able to provide the dispatcher with as much information as possible.


The Invisible War

[We’re] giving survivors for the first time a voice in the military justice process

– Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel

The military reports that more women are willing to report sexual assaults. In a new anonymous survey, it is suggested victims are becoming far more willing to file complaints than in years past.

According to the Associated Press, 1 in every 4 victims filed a report this year, in sharp contrast to 2012, when only about 1 in every 10 military victims came forward.

Before the survey results were reported, The White House believed it would increase sexual abuse in the ranks and change a culture that forces victims to keep their mouths shut.

Now roughly 60 percent of women in the military said they experienced retaliation for reporting a sexual assault, according to the new report.

The Defense Department conducted their last anonymous report in 2012 and found about 26,000 services members said they had been the victim of unwanted sexual contact — a number that stunned officials and outraged lawmakers, triggering a barrage of congressional hearings and legislative changes.

The officials said there were nearly 6,000 victims of reported assaults in 2014, compared with just over 5,500 last year. The Pentagon changed its method of accounting for the assaults this year, and now each victim counts for one report. This year, that number dropped to about 19,000 — including about 10,500 men and 8,500 women — which officials said suggested that there was a trend of sexual assaults declining.


The days are getting shorter and the holidays are just around the corner. Runner assaults and street harassment are on the rise.

What would you do if a stranger approached you from behind and grabbed you?

How would you defend yourself if you don’t carry mace?
Would you be able to get away?

We’re partnering with Divas in Defense to educate and empower you to stay safe! Divas in Defense empowers women of all ages with the training and tools imperative to their personal safety and the safety of their families. Through fun, instinctive learning, women gain the knowledge to protect and arm themselves while gaining to be Fierce & Fabulous.

We want to empower Black Girls RUN! members to stay safe on and off the pavement!

Our special Black Girls RUN! Divas of Defense course will teach you the following:

– Tips on runner safety (more than just running against traffic, running in groups, etc.)

– Proper defensive stances

– Defensive hand strikes, leg strikes, combinations, releases and breaks

– Overview of safety toys

Date: Saturday, December 6, 2014
Time: 1 pm EST
Location: 228 Powell Street SE, Atlanta, GA 30316

Please plan to arrive by 12:45pm to check in and sign a waiver. This will be an active indoor course, so please wear athletic/running clothing. The course will last 1 hour.

Due to the limited space of this session, the fee is non-refundable.
Please use street parking.

Learn more about Divas In Defense at

Written By Toni Carey


As most of the nation waited anxiously for the Ferguson indictment decision on Monday, three female students and many of their classmates walked out of their Oklahoma high school yesterday afternoon. We are not just talking about their friends but hundreds of students walked out with signs and chanted “ No Justice, no class” and “ No more bullying.”

The students were protesting the school’s response to allegations of bullying of the three female students and their unfortunate rape by the same person. As in any sexual assault cases we see it is extremely hard for the victim to speak up. So to have not only one but three girls who are just in high school speak up and stand their ground is amazing.

As the hashtag #YesAll Daughters gained attention, Norman Police Department Captain Tom Easley has said the school was enlarging a task force to study the implementation of a “targeted, research-based sexual assault curriculum for students,” and that the school will continue to respond quickly to reports of sexual assault and bullying.

Of course this made me stop scrolling on my phone and read the entire article because I am someone’s daughter but this can also affect someone son. The thought of the school was not taking the allegations serious enough and the amount of online bullying that was allowed to go on for so long was outrageous. Many do not realize social media bullying is becoming present in the lives of our teenagers every day. If they are not the ones doing the cyber bullying they are the ones being bullied. It takes one tweet to change a person entire life.

While on winter break sign your Young Diva for Divas In Defense “On Her Own” Workshop December 20th, 2014: