The Shop on Royal Street

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If you’ve read my series of posts on Charleston, South Carolina, you know that my trip there last September was inspired by the Tradd Street books by Karen White. (Read my spoiler free review of that series HERE.)

I love those stories set in the Holy City and the fun, eclectic cast of characters. How grateful I am that Karen is creating a spin off series, featuring one of the characters from Tradd Street. The first book just released and I thoroughly enjoyed the read.

Check out my spoiler free review of The Shop on Royal Street.

The Shop on Royal Street title meme

Author Karen White

Karen White is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 31 books…and counting. She lived in London, England as a child, however she now resides near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband. They have two grown children.

According to her website, Karen grew up in a house full of brothers. She came to appreciate strong female characters in the third grade, after reading the Nancy Drew Mystery, The Secret of the Old Clock.

Although she initially pursued a career in business, she wrote her first book, In the Shadow of the Moon, in 2000. She is well known for the Tradd Street Series, publishing the seventh…and final…book in that collection last November.

Karen’s roots are in the south, where many of her stories take place. Her charming tales contain a fun mix of drama, mystery, intrigue, romance and sometimes ghosts and hauntings.

The Shop on Royal Street karen white
Karen White, author of The Shop on Royal Street. Photo from her website.

The Shop on Royal Street

In the book The Strangers on Montagu, teenager Nola Trenholm arrives unexpectedly at Melanie’s house on Tradd Street. She surprises Melanie and Jack with the announcement that she is Jack’s daughter. Jumping right into parenthood, Jack and Melanie take the young girl in, giving her a home and helping her cope with the tragedy of her mother’s death.

The Shop on Royal Street takes place ten years later and moves the story, along with Nola, from Charleston to New Orleans.

Nola’s entry into adulthood wasn’t easy. New Orleans offers a chance for a fresh start with a new job and a house in the historic and offbeat Marigny District.

However, after the sensitive young woman purchases her first house, a fixer upper that everyone else avoids, she encounters old ghosts from her past…and new spirits that occupy the space she’s carefully renovating.

There are intriguing mysteries to solve, complex life situations to navigate as a young adult, an old friendship to rekindle and the perplexing Beau Ryan to figure out. That young man attracts Nola and irritates her equally.

And the shop on Royal Street refers to the antique and collectible store that Beau’s grandmother Mimi owns and operates. More mysteries surround the older woman and the shop with the locked room in the back.

New Orleans serves beautifully as the backdrop for this engaging story, with its lively neighborhoods, historic homes and French, African and American cultures.

The Shop on Royal Street sign
The Shop on Royal Street – street sign

What I Love About The Shop on Royal Street

As a fan of the Tradd Street series, I’m so delighted with the launch this new series.

I like knowing who Nola is, having “met” her in the first series and watched her personal growth while living with Melanie and Jack. The references to characters from the Tradd Street series build on that sense of familiarity. It’s also fun to see what’s going on with those characters a decade later and discovering if they are living “happily ever after”.

However, The Shop on Royal Street is very much Nola’s story and I enjoyed seeing how she’s developing as a character and a person. Karen uses humor in her writing and that is evident in this story as well.

And, as with the Tradd Street series, the supernatural plays an important part in the plot. As a sensitive and intuitive myself, I appreciate that thread woven throughout these books. I admit experiencing full body goosebumps a couple of times as I read about Nola’s encounters with spirits. However, the hauntings are well written about, without blood and gore or outlandish “that could never happen” extremes. Karen expertly portrays ghostly situations and hauntings that are very believable…and in my own experiences, entirely possible.

The Shop on Royal Street candle
A fun book to read, while sipping on hot tea.

New Orleans

Although I’ve had the pleasure of visiting New Orleans, my explorations there focused primarily on the French Quarter District.

New Orleans is one of the 15 cities on my Adventure List. Reading Karen’s newest book amplifies the longing to visit New Orleans again and explore other districts in the city such as Marigny, which lies adjacent to the French Quarter.

I love the way Karen writes about her book locations. She wonderfully captures the spirit…and sometimes spirits…of the community, weaving in vivid  and accurate details that make it easy to imagine the flow of events.

If you enjoy reading a good story set in a gorgeous city with lovable, quirky characters, mysteries to solve and things that go bump in the night, I highly recommend The Shop on Royal Street. While this story can stand alone, I’d suggest reading the Tradd Street series as well. Doing so adds depth and context. You’ll thank me later!

Have you recently read a book that inspires adventures? Share it with me in the comments below.

The Shop on Royal Street book



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Tradd Street Series

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Author Karen White inspired my recent trip to Charleston, South Carolina. Her Tradd Street Series, set in that charming city, delighted me and birthed a curiosity to explore Charleston myself.

That’s the power of a well written book…or seven. They transport the reader to another place, another time, another culture. Karen’s books enchanted me. And I transported myself to the actual city, in early September.

There really is a Tradd Street in Charleston. I wandered down it several times. And many of the buildings and locations she mentions in her books are there too. What fun to explore a new to me city, that also felt so familiar.

Check out my mini reviews of each of the seven books in the Tradd Street series. Perhaps you will feel inspired to read them…and explore Charleston too.

Tradd Street Series title meme

Meet Author Karen White

Karen White is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of 29 books…and counting. She lived in London, England as a child, however she now lives near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband. They have two grown children.

According to her website, Karen grew up in a house full of brothers. She came to appreciate strong female characters in the third grade, when she read her first Nancy Drew Mystery…The Secret of the Old Clock.

Although she initially pursued a career in business, she wrote her first book, In the Shadow of the Moon, in 2000. She is well known for her Tradd Street Series, publishing the seventh book in that collection in early November.

Karen’s roots are in the south, where many of her stories take place. Her charming stories contain a fun mix of drama, mystery, intrigue, romance and sometimes ghosts.

Tradd Street Series Karen White
Tradd Street Series author Karen White. Photo from her website.

The Tradd Street Series

Following is a brief, spoiler free overview of each of the books in the Tradd Street Series, in the order of publish date.

The story is ongoing, flowing from book to book. Therefore, it is important to read the books in order. I picked up my first Tradd Street book from the library last spring, after my mother read the back cover aloud to me. Not realizing a series existed, it happened to be book three, The Strangers on Montagu Street. I took it home and quickly realized I’d jumped into the middle of a story. Research revealed six books in a series…with a seventh due out in November.

Finding the first book, I devoured it and my mother and I both read through the whole series.

Here they are. Click on photos of books for more info or to order.

Book One The House on Tradd Street

Set in Charleston, this first book introduces the characters. We meet practical and extremely organized Melanie Middleton, a realtor who specializes in historic houses. This realtor though possesses a unique gift. She sees, hears and senses ghosts. And in a town full of historic events and locations like Charleston, that means she sees spirits everywhere.

To her great surprise, Melanie inherits a historic house on Tradd Street. The old house comes with a housekeeper, a dog, a number of restoration projects…and ghosts. There’s an old mystery to unravel, a family of spirits and a disappearance to solve.

Other characters introduced in The House on Tradd Street include Jack Trenholm, an attractive, charismatic writer obsessed with unsolved mysteries, Melanie’s father, a recovering alcoholic, and an eclectic assortment of friends.

Book Two The Girl on Legare Street

As Melanie renovates the old house she inherited, her life gets disrupted by the return of her estranged mother. Ginette Prioleau Middleton left Charleston 35 years ago, leaving Melanie’s father to raise their daughter.

After purchasing back the family home on Legare Street, Ginnette and Melanie seek to rebuild their relationship while combating a vengeful spirit residing in the house. Melanie, Ginette and Jack uncover dark secrets in their attempt to restore a family.

Book Three The Strangers on Montagu Street

This book introduces a new character, a teenaged girl named Nola. The girl turns out to be the daughter of Jack Trenholm, Melanie’s partner in solving mysteries and her love interest. Jack is as surprised as everyone else to discover he has a daughter.

Nola arrives with only a few possessions, after the death of her mother in California. However, she doesn’t arrive unaccompanied. An old dollhouse, occupied by more than toys, and a spirit that arrived with Nola vie for the girl’s attention and create havoc in Melanie’s life and house on Tradd Street.

Book Four Return to Tradd Street

Melanie and Jack’s relationship is as complicated as the house on Tradd Street. When Melanie discovers she’s pregnant, she determines to create a home for her and Jack’s child and embrace the role of single mother.

Tradd Street house has other plans. The wails of a ghost child will not allow Melanie to sleep at night. A shocking discovery at the house, during the extensive renovations, changes everything and launches Melanie deep into the house’s history and a tale of love, loss and betrayal.

Book Five The Guests on South Battery

Book five introduces new character Jayne, who seeks out Melanie’s services as a realtor. Jayne is eager to sell an old house on South Battery that she recently inherited.

Jayne is shrouded in mystery and strangely, seems to possess abilities similar to Melanie’s. A creepy doll and a malevolent spirit in Jayne’s house reveal secrets that refuse to remain buried.

Book Six The Christmas Spirits on Tradd Street

The excavation of an old cistern, uncovered in the backyard of the house on Tradd Street, stirs up spirits from the past. The ghosts invade the house. Plus a persistent rumor that a long lost Revolutionary War treasure is buried on the property creates more problems.

Melanie and Jack once again join forces to solve a centuries old mystery before it destroys their lives and all that they hold dear.

Book Seven The Attic on Queen Street

In this last book in the Tradd Street Series, Melanie struggles with devastating changes in her life. As she and Jack comes to terms with those changes, a longtime nemesis steps in to seemingly offer a solution. Is all what it appears to be though?

While the house seems to develop a personality of its own, a friend asks Melanie for help in solving the decades old murder of her sister. The attic on Queen Street seems to hold the answers along with a less than friendly spirit who does not want the murder investigated.

My Thoughts about the Tradd Street Series

I love this series. Here’s why.

I identify strongly with Melanie’s character. She’s a psychic realtor…and so am I. She shows and sells old houses, in spite of her fears and her abilities to see, hear and sense ghosts. I do that too. It is helpful to me, on a deep level, to read about Melanie’s experiences and compare them to mine. Her growing courage and acceptance of her gifts mirrors my journey.

I appreciate the realistic way that Karen White portrays the supernatural, so much so that we exchanged emails and I had the opportunity to ask if she has intuitive abilities as well. She does not…at least not to the extant that her character Melanie does…but she’s always pursued an interest in ghosts and hauntings.

The series is fun to read, with passages that deliver some scary moments. It’s NOT full of blood and gore however. The books would translate wonderfully into a Netflix series! Fingers crossed.

Karen deeply loves the location and it shows in the way she features the city. Her beautiful ability to capture Charleston created a longing in me to explore the places she writes about.

The stories are uplifting, encouraging and thought provoking. By the end of the last book I felt like I’d acquired dear friends…or new family members.

Tradd Street Series corner of Tradd and Meeting
The corner of Tradd and Meeting Streets. Imagine my joy.

Pick Up Your Ticket to Charleston

Even if you don’t have Charleston on your travel list, you will enjoy this series. The books are extremely entertaining and hard to put down once you begin reading.

I love seeing new places, through the pages of a book. Charleston came alive for me, as I read about Melanie and Jack’s adventures. I hated to see the series come to an end. I’m SO grateful Karen is crafting a new series, set in New Orleans. It features Nola from the Tradd Street books as the primary character. That means, hopefully, Melanie, Jack and some of the others show up in future books. I can’t wait to dig into The Shop on Royal Street next spring.

You can check your local library for Karen’s series and other books…they are all good…or you can purchase them at your local bookstore or order them via the links in this post. Start with The House on Tradd Street. As we head into winter, it’s the perfect time to curl up with a cup of hot tea and an excellent book…or seven.

And please, let me know what you think!

Tradd Street Series 62 Tradd
In case you are wondering, there isn’t a 55 Tradd Street, like in the book. This one, at 62 Tradd is close to the location in the book. I just read today that the house at 125 Tradd Street inspired the one in the book.


Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.

The Happy Inbox

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Thank you to Sourcebooks for sending me The Happy Inbox book for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

October was National Book Month. I shared the five books I’m currently reading in this post. Each book appeals to me, for different reasons.

The Happy Inbox, by Maura Nevel Thomas, showed up in my email…and my life…at the perfect time. I admit, I am overwhelmed by the number of emails that flow…and flow…and flow…into my inbox.

Between three email accounts, I received hundreds of emails a day. If I neglect dealing with them for even a couple of days, they seemed to magically multiple, in an explosive way. And then I don’t even want to mess with them.

That’s NOT a good system.

I appreciate The Happy Inbox and the difference it’s making in the way I think about managing emails.

The Happy Inbox title meme

The Empowered Productivity Series

The Happy Inbox is actually book three in the Empowered Productivity Series. Book one is Attention Management: How to Create Success and Gain Productivity—Every Day. And the second book in the series is From To-Do to Done: How to Go from Busy to Productive by Mastering Your To-Do List.

Together these books lay a path to peak productivity. They help the reader achieve results that are most significant, both personally and professionally.

Maura developed the Empowered Productivity System in 2012 after many years of successfully helping her clients. In the past decade, working with some of the world’s most influential leaders and brands, she has reimagined the system, incorporating input and feedback from more than 40,000 professionals.

In short, Maura knows about productivity and freeing others to live extraordinary lives. Her desire is to see more people able to bring their unique gifts to the world in a way that inspires, motivates and excites rather than exhausts, overwhelms and stresses.

The Happy Inbox pumpkin
The Happy Inbox – one of my fall reading books.

The Happy Inbox

This book is easy to read in an afternoon. However, it is PACKED with helpful information for managing communication, not just temporarily but forever.

The book contains five chapters plus an introduction and a conclusion.


Maura points out, correctly, that today managing communication is huge. We are constantly receiving pings…those notifications from emails, texts, phone calls and social media. Truly, it never stops. And those pings are a distraction, causing us to continually switch tasks.

The book offers help in these ways:

  • reduces stress caused by digital and paper clutter
  • minimizes the amount of communication sent and received
  • retrieves important info quickly
  • collaborate with others more effectively

Chapter One: Getting Your Email Under Control

Maura starts here, for good reason. Emails, too many of them, too many unimportant ones, fill our inboxes, creating stress.

There’s no instant fix for overflowing inboxes. However, this chapter and the rest of the book provide the steps for tackling the overabundance of emails and then setting up systems for managing them.

Chapter Two: Being Reactive Vs Being Responsive

In this chapter we learn the things we shouldn’t do with email. There are common tactics we all use to make us feel like we are dealing effectively…and responsively…with emails. However, they are actually counterproductive.

Chapter Three: Processing Email – Done for Now

Maura offers tips in this section for processing emails, dealing with each message so that it’s not hanging around as an unknown. This involves sorting in a variety of helpful ways to help identify what’s there and act in an efficient way. The goal is to move messages out of the inbox.

The TESST process applies to every email:

  • Take immediate action
  • Empower others and yourself (delegate)
  • Suspend to task list, to take required action later
  • Store for future reference
  • Trash it

Chapter Four: If You Need a Fresh Start

The previous chapters supply tools and tips for managing emails. This chapter discusses strategies for dealing with a backlog of thousands or tens of thousands of emails.

There are also helpful suggestions in this chapter for creating better emails. And there’s a section as well on managing other forms of communication.

Chapter Five: Meeting Management

This segment deals with handling meetings, if that is part of your workday.


Maura concludes with key takeaways from the book and positive action steps.

The Happy Inbox emails
The Happy Inbox – see the number of emails??

My Experience with The Happy Inbox

Take a look at the screenshot above. See the email icon? It shows 27,485 emails clogging my inbox. I wasn’t exaggerating when I said this book showed up at the right time.

As Maura points out in the book, managing emails is not a quick fix. However, it IS doable, one step at a time. I am appreciating this book very much as I implement the systems and more than that, recognize why I allow emails to pile up.

In Chapter One Maura writes:

“Your inbox is for receiving messages, not storing them.”

That statement was my first big AHA! I use my inbox to store messages, requiring me to wade through unimportant emails to find, again and again, the important ones. It’s not an effective way to manage communications. I know that. Yet, it feels so overwhelming, dealing with the backlog.

I’m taking action. And I’m learning to implement the systems. It’s not a quick turn around. However, I feel like I’m making progress and streamlining communication.

The number of emails is huge. But that number is smaller than it was a week ago! Step by step, I’m whittling them down.

Get Your Copy of The Happy Inbox

Is your inbox full, like mine? Would you love to manage your communications more effectively? And best of all, would you like to reduce the stress that accompanies a backlog of emails and notifications?

Pick up The Happy Inbox by clicking this link. Or check out all three books in the Empowered Productivity Series, via the Amazon links below.

In the comments below, tell me your numbers. How many emails are currently in your inbox? Can anyone beat my 27,000+? I look forward to sharing, in the near future, a big fat zero for number of emails sitting in my inbox.

The Happy Inbox book


Amazon Links for the Empowered Productivity Series





Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.





Write Like You Mean It

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Thank you to Brown Books Publishing for sending me a copy of Write Like You Mean It for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

If author Steve Gamel and I met, I feel like we’d instantly become friends. What would we talk about? Our conversation, peppered with laughter, would highlight the stories of our writing paths and the creative passion that fuels our journeys.

Instead of a chat over a cup of hot tea or coffee, however, what I have is a conversational style book that allows me a peek into Steve’s long and successful career as a writer. Filled with stories, lessons, strategies and tools, Write Like You Mean It is the perfect handbook for the beginner or the experienced writer.

Write Like You Mean It title meme

Meet Steve Gamel

Steve entered college intent on receiving a degree in broadcast journalism. After a professor criticized an article he wrote, with the scathing words, “Have you ever read a newspaper before?”, Steve dedicated himself to mastering the craft of writing.

In the years after college, Steve regularly wrote for such publications as the Dallas Morning News, Allen Publishing, Murray Media Group and his local paper, the Denton Record-Chronicle. Steve continually honed his skills by reading EVERYTHING and writing outside of the sports news genre. If there was a story to tell, any kind of story, he told it. Along the way he collected national, state and local writing awards.

In 2014 Steve founded a writing and editing service called Edit This. With his debut book, Steve desires to connect with other writers and share what he’s learned. The conversations in the book revolve around writing, writers and how we can all master our passion for the written word.

“Write Like You Mean It means putting all your heart, soul, blood, sweat, and tears into your passion for writing. Our words are our stock in trade. We are craftsmen. We are artists. Furthermore, our audience deserves to see and feel each word we put on a page. I want writers to realize that whatever they’ve written deserves to see the light of day rather than being tucked away on a dusty bedroom shelf somewhere. They need to believe in themselves, and they need to believe in their writing. I think the tools, tips, life hacks, resources, and
examples in this book will help writers from all walks of life write like they mean it.” Steve Gamel

Write Like You Mean It steve
Write Like You Mean It author Steve Gamel

Mastering Your Passion for the Written Word

The book offers a wealth of information, tips and actionable steps, gathered from Steve’s years of experience as a writer. It’s broken into three sections.

Start Writing

This opening section begins at the beginning! With chapters on overcoming fear, developing a writer’s checklist, active voice, tools for the trade and writer’s block, Steve helps us get out of our own way by moving beyond the fear and into the mechanics.

Steve supplies examples of work, illustrating his points, and tips for improving skills. These are helpful for all writers.

Writing to a Purpose

The middle section moves deeper into the world of writing and includes chapters on active listening, research and organization, nonfiction, fiction, storytelling for all styles of writing and freelancing.

I learned early in my journey that purpose connects strongly to my writing. Without purpose, I flounder. This section in the book fired up my heart and challenged me to continue to develop my craft.

Write Like You Mean It to Be Read

The final section of the book includes the important editing process, how to market what you’ve poured your heart and soul into and the different ways of publishing work.

Steve concludes with the perfect list of takeaways from his book:

  • move beyond fears
  • master the active voice and basic mechanics of writing
  • recognize that writer’s block is a teacher
  • stay organized and keep your audience in mind
  • tell stories
  • stay open to feedback and develop a writing community
  • read, read, read
  • write each sentence better than yesterday
  • market yourself and your work
  • celebrate every opportunity for publishing work
Write Like You Mean It computer
Write Like You Mean It – my writing tools. I always have a stack of notebooks nearby.

My Thoughts on Write Like You Mean It

I deeply appreciate this book. Reading it reminded me of my own writing journey.

I knew by the age of eight that I wanted to write. My mom bought me a little typewriter and off I went, crafting stories. My path meandered through toying with a novel, writing children’s stories, creating homeschool curriculum to use with my kids and finally, blogging.

At the end of 2013, I connected a strong purpose to my desire to write…and created my blog, Going Beyond. See my first, makes-me-cringe-now post HERE.

During the last nine years I worked on finding my voice and narrowing my niche. I invested in myself and learned about SEO, finding my audience, improving my writing and marketing through social media. And I moved the blog to a site I can monetize and changed the name slightly. While I still have a toe in real estate…my heart and soul light up when I write. The passion to write burns within me and I not only welcome it, I fan it.

Write Like You Mean It empowers me to become the best writer possible and to focus, really focus, on the nonfiction book I’m “writing on the side”.

Write Like You Mean It cindy
Write Like You Mean It – queen of my writing kingdom

Who Can Benefit from Write Like You Mean It?

Whatever your genre…fiction, poetry, a blog, magazine articles or nonfiction…this book is for you. Aspiring writers, struggling writers and professional writers all benefit from Steve’s expert knowledge, tips and practices.

Plus, he delivers the keys to success in a friendly, down-to-earth style that resonates with the writer within and encourages a higher level of skill.

When you finish the book, you too might feel like you’ve just enjoyed a lively and enlightening conversation with a friend, a writer friend, who wants the very best for you.

How does that sound to you?

Pick up your copy of Write Like You Mean It by clicking this Amazon LINK. Grab a cup of coffee or a hot tea, open the book, and join the conversation.


Write Like You Mean It flatlay


Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.


Emancipated Love Junkie

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Thank you to author Rachel Wilshusen for sending me her book, Emancipated Love Junkie, for review purposes. All opinions are my own.


As a blogger, I get many requests to read and review books. I love to read, however I do not have the time currently to enjoy many books, necessitating the turning down of most requests.

Occasionally, though, an author and book comes along that captivates me or touches me, even before I hold the book in my hands. Rachel Wilshusen is such an author who has written such a book.

The subject of eating disorders is not unfamiliar to me. I understand the importance of offering help to those who feel trapped by their thoughts about and perceptions of food. Rachel’s charming email, writing style and her travels intrigued me. Over the last month I have indeed held her book in my hands and carried it around with me as I read her moving memoir and followed her healing journey. I’m grateful for the opportunity.

Check out this book review for Emancipated Love Junkie.

Emancipated Love Junkie title meme

Meet Rachel Wilshusen

Rachel is a vibrant writer with liberal arts degrees from not one but three universities: University of Pennsylvania, University College London and University of Cambridge.

She’s lived on both the east and west coasts of the United States and also in the midwestern state of Oklahoma. As a young adult she traveled, living and working in Canada, England and China.

During her travels, this talented woman worked as an executive assistant, rock musician, teacher, playwright, and cookie company owner.

However, Rachel hid a secret.

For 20 years, she struggled with eating disorders, including bingeing and anorexia. Emancipated Love Junkie is a beautiful, humorous and oft times painfully honest memoir of the journey that ultimately led to her recovery.

Emancipated Love Junkie rachel
Rachel Wilshusen, author of Emancipated Love Junkie. Photo from her website.

Rachel’s Story

From her early childhood in Arizona to her travels around the world, Rachel details her shifting relationship with food. And beyond that, she shares her deteriorating relationship with herself.

Raised with an appreciation for family, homecooked meals and baked goods, Rachel felt she was a star ascending…if only others could see her the way she envisioned herself. She clung to the bright hope for her future that children instinctively possess, until life began to tarnish her vision.

The family moved frequently, due to her father’s work as an Army doctor. Rachel often felt like an outsider in new schools as she tried desperately to fit in. And yet, she experienced the warmth of a close knit family. She found pleasure in running. Beyond a doubt, she knew she was meant for so much more than standing on the fringes.

By high school, Rachel’s love/hate relationship with food began. If she could just control what she ate, and when she ate, things would change. She could be one of the popular girls, one of the “Sylvias” that seemed to have it all together.

The struggles with eating deepened. Times of starvation followed bouts of bingeing. The negative self talk began. That inner critic, which Rachel nicknamed Mal, became a constant companion.

High Highs and Low Lows

As she bounced around the US and the world, Rachel drove herself to achieve, to present herself as the best teacher, executive assistant or cookie maker. And she succeeded. Additionally, the long days and hard work helped silence her inner critic. However, those perfectionist tendencies took a toll on her physically, emotionally and mentally.

After binge eating a whole pizza one night, and feeling the agony of an overly full stomach after a day of starvation, she made a vow. No more bingeing. Ever.

Thereafter, Rachel attempted to maintain what she considered her ideal weight and size by severely limiting food intake. She appeared successful and thin and brilliant…and she was all of those things. Beneath the shiny exterior though lurked dark thoughts of failing, of not being enough, of not being worthy.

This is a healing journey, thankfully. To get to the recovery part, Rachel had to get to the face-pressed-against-the-floorboards, “I can’t do this anymore” part. She did. And when she reached out, she found help available.

Emancipated Love Junkie collect beautiful moments
Emancipated Love Junkie – collect beautiful moments

My Thoughts About Emancipated Love Junkie

Rachel’s book powerfully captures her journey to recovery and healing. I found her transparency incredibly honest and authentic. Coupled with her conversational and charming writing style, Rachel’s story is easy to read while difficult to put down. She includes Self Love Gems throughout the book that offer helpful suggestions and positive actions.

I hurt for her, as I read about her struggles with food and self worth.  I literally became aware of pressing my hand over my heart as I felt compassion for her.

And although I did not dealt with bingeing or anorexia, I had complicated relationships with food and with myself. I understand Rachel’s journey. My health shifted, for the better, when my relationship with food shifted. For most of my life, I ate foods that I knew created discomfort and inflammation in my body. Gluten and dairy products made me sick. I consumed them anyway. When I felt happy, I ate. When I felt sad, I ate. Loneliness? Boredom? The solution was always food.

I’m grateful for a healthy relationship now with food and with myself.

And I’m grateful as well for Rachel and her changed relationships with food and herself.

She has much to offer to the world. To those struggling secretly or openly with eating disorders, Rachel offers hope.

Emancipated Love Junkie book
Emancipated Love Junkie book

Purchasing Rachel’s Book

You can order Emancipated Love Junkie via Rachel’s website HERE. Or by clicking this Amazon LINK.


Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.



The Story Behind Little Golden Books

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

As one of my celebration activities, during the 63 Curious Things to Do for My 63rd Birthday, I drew this slip of paper: Write about a topic I’ve never written about before.

I had just boxed up children’s books in my home and delivered them to my daughter, for her baby girl, Finley. Delivering the books, I wondered, When did Little Golden Books come into existence? I remembered reading them as a child. And I read them to my children and grandchildren.

That question led to research and a blog topic I’ve never written about before.

Here’s the story behind Little Golden Books.

The Story Behind Little Golden Books title meme

The Beginning of Little Golden Books

When Little Golden Books first published, in 1942, high quality books for children were expensive, averaging $2 to $3 each. Most parents couldn’t afford such books. Little Golden Books changed that, launching 12 titles in their first series.

Sold in stores where people shopped weekly, and at an extremely reasonable 25 cents each, the books gained instant popularity. Hundreds of thousands of books sold, drawing the attention of talented writers such as Margaret Wise Brown, author of Goodnight Moon, and new author Richard Scarry. Millions of children developed a love for reading, thanks to these affordable books.

The first three titles published in 1942 included Three Little Kittens, The Little Red Hen and The Alphabet from A to Z. Each book featured brightly colored illustrations and a sturdy cardboard cover with a shiny, golden spine.

The Story Behind Little Golden Books red hen
The Story Behind Little Golden Books – The Little Red Hen


Little Golden Books Timeline


Just four months after their initial launch, most Little Golden Book titles are in their third printing. More than 1.5 million copies sell during that time.

In 1944, Disney publishes their first Little Golden Book, Through the Picture Frame.


In the 1950s the company celebrates its 10th anniversary with 183 million books sold. The cost is still 25 cents. Except for Russia, the books are available throughout the world.


Prices raise slightly in the 60s, to 29 cents. Due to the popularity of Saturday morning cartoons, titles include favorites such as The Flintstones, Huckleberry Hound and Tom and Jerry.


Sesame Street titles join Little Golden Books in the 1970s. And the first Barbie title is published in 1974. The price per book is now 59 cents.


In 1982, Little Golden Books celebrates its 40th anniversary, with more than 800 million books sold. Cost per book rises to 89 cents. On November 20, 1986, the one billionth Little Golden Book is printed. The Poky Little Puppy becomes the best selling children’s book of all time.

Click photo to order this title from Amazon.


By the 2000s, the company relaunches its most popular vintage books, due to consumer demand. Little Golden Books offers 1200 unique titles, priced at $2.99 each.


July 2013 sees the release of Star Wars Little Golden Books, with a Star Wars theme on the golden spines. Books are now $3.99 each. Random House publishes the New York Times bestseller, Everything I Need to Know, I Learned from a Little Golden Book, by Diane Muldrow.

Little Golden Books celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2017. There are 644 titles in print. Books sell for $4.99. The company continues to release new titles for today’s child. Penguin Random House is the current publisher.

A recent release, available from Amazon. Click photo to order.

A Childhood Tradition that Continues

I grew up reading Little Golden Books. My favorite titles were fairy tales and classics such as The Little Red Hen. When my family moved from Oklahoma to Missouri, in 1970, we sold our collection of books at a garage sale. Oh, how I wish I still had my childhood books!

My children grew up reading Little Golden Books as well. Their favorites included stories about animals, tie ins to television shows such Sesame Street and Pano the Train. I read The Boy with a Drum so many times that I memorized it. That book continued as an often requested read from my grandchildren. I can still quote most of the book from memory.

The Story Behind Little Golden Books vintage
The Story Behind Little Golden Books – these are vintage now and well worn from years of reading

A New Home for My Little Golden Books

With the birth of my newest granddaughter, Finley Grace, it felt like time for the collection of books to go to a new home. I boxed up the Little Golden Books along with Dr. Seuss classics and paperback favorites such as The Berenstain Bears series.

My daughter Adriel graciously accepted those books and gave them a new home in the baby’s nursery. I’m so thrilled that Adriel and her husband Nate read to Finley daily and indeed began reading to her while she was still in the womb. At almost three months old, she loves books already.

My oldest child, daughter Elissa, recently showed me the copy of the Ruth Bader Ginsburg Little Golden Book that she had just purchased. I admired it and asked if the book was for Finley. “Oh no,” she told me. “This is my book.”

That’s my girl. And that’s the continuing power of Little Golden Books.

Do you have a favorite title?

The Story Behind Little Golden Books bookcase
The Story Behind Little Golden Books – a new home for the books

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Book Review Live Life Colorfully

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Thank you to wunderkind pr for sending Live Life Colorfully for review purposes. All opinions are my own.


In the midst of an ongoing, world wide pandemic and the accompanying changes we all continue to experience, it’s refreshing to dive into a book that encourages creativity and seeing life differently.

Jason Naylor’s beautiful book, Live Life Colorfully, offers respite, uplifts the spirit and fires up the creativity nestled within us all. I can’t help but smile over the bold, colorful pages as I slowly and thoughtfully thumb through the book. Each page is an invitation to bring more color, more positivity, into my life. It’s an invitation I happily accept.

Allow me to introduce you to Jason Naylor and his colorful life.

Live Life Colorfully title meme

Meet Jason Naylor

Jason is an award winning artist and designer based in NYC. He is known for his bright colors and even brighter messages of hope. Originally from Salt Lake City, he traveled to New York as a teen and felt drawn to the color, the art and the culture there.

Jason’s work has received global recognition, including the Golden Novum Design award, and he has been featured on HGTV and the Discovery Channel. In 2018, Jason was named by BUMBLE as one of the 100 Most Inspiring New Yorkers, and his colorful creations have found partnership with brands like Coach, Guess, Pepsi, and Maybelline.

Jason’s mission is to spread color and positivity around the world. His brightly colored designs and insightful words reflect his zeal for life, his quest for joy, and his love of LOVE.  His art ranges from videos to illustrations to typography to murals. And now he’s created his first book, Live Life Colorfully.

“I like to describe my color palette as electric. My art is very reliant upon messaging, often about kindness or love, but I don’t see these as something passive. I think they should be treated with passion and energy, and my palette supports that.” Jason Naylor

Those words perfectly capture Jason’s book. It’s full of that passion and energy.

Live Life Colorfully Jason Naylor
Live Life Colorfully – artist Jason Naylor

Live Life Colorfully Book

One of Jason’s strongest messages is to “live life colorfully” so it’s no surprise to discover those words as the title and theme of his new release.

The square hardcover book features rich, bold colors on pages with black  or brilliantly hued backgrounds. However, this isn’t just a book to read cover to cover or a “coffee table” book. No. This beautiful book offers insights, tips, quotes and activities…99 of them…to add joy, positivity and creativity to life.

Did you know that looking at or using strong vibrant colors lifts the spirits, stimulates the brain and boosts creativity?

Live Life Colorfully offers all of that within its pages with a mix of inspiration, tips and fun activities.  It’s the perfect gift for self help, motivation, and happiness seekers, as well as lovers of pop art and bright colors.

Live Life Colorfully page 54
Live Life Colorfully – #54 Albert Einstein quote

Sample of Pages

Take a look at some of the bright, fun pages within Live Life Colorfully.

#24 Color Your Sidewalk

How long has it been since YOU colored on the sidewalk? It’s an activity children enjoy however as adults, we either don’t take the time to play in this way or we feel foolish for coloring madly on the sidewalk.

Jason encourages the reconnection with the inner child, something I’ve been consciously doing for several years. It’s amazing how doing so fires up creativity.

Live Life Colorfully page 24
Live Life Colorfully – #24 Color Your Sidewalk

#2 Stick it to the (Hu)Man

I love the reminder on this page to leave encouraging notes around the home or office. I have a stack of colorful sticky notes, which is perfect! Often we crave words of praise from someone…anyone. We can encourage ourselves with funny sayings, words of praise or inspiring quotes.

And what a great idea for brightening a child’s room or surprising a co-worker.

Live Life Colorfully page 2
Live Life Colorfully – #2 Leave sticky notes around the house or office

#77 Four Letter Words

I love this activity. Jason writes that four letter words, also called colorful language, often refer to profane or vulgar words. However he says we get it wrong. There are many four letter words that inspire, encourage, uplift or possess deeper meanings.

Jason shares some of his favorite four letter words and invites the reader to come up with more.

Live Life Colorfully 77
Live Life Colorfully – #77 Four Letter Words

My Thoughts About Live Life Colorfully

Simply stated, I love this book. I feel energized, joyful and creative as I work through it. The quotes inspire me. And some of the pages elicit a laugh while others lead me to deeper thoughts and realizations.

There are pages on cutting out fear, making a paper airplane, growing succulents and shining as your absolute self. One activity encourages the reader to give things away. Another one discusses hugs.  There’s a helpful tip on organizing your phone apps by color and one to colorize your closet.

Jason lives life boldly, compassionately, confidently and yes, colorfully and I appreciate the gifts he offers to the world.

In the forward to the book, Jason shares these words:

“Live life colorfully is a succinct way to say ‘Be yourself, be brave, be proud of who you are, be kind, be loving and be happy!’ I hope that exploring this book will help you do just that.”

That’s exactly what the book is doing as I explore it. I randomly open to a page and read the text. If an activity is present, then I do that. During a year when my intention is to be my most authentic, creative “wild woman” self, Jason’s book serves as a powerful reminder of what that means.

Live Life Colorfully 53
Live Life Colorfully – #53 Use Colored Pens

Get Your Book

Are you ready to bring more color, creativity and joy into your life?

You can order your copy of Live Life Colorfully at Chronicle Books or through Bookshop. It’s also available at Amazon.

I believe you’ll enjoy colorizing your life!

Book Cover





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Miracle Minded Manager Book Review

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Thank you to SMITH PUBLICITY for sending me a copy of the book Miracle Minded Manager for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

When Smith Publicity contacted me about reviewing Miracle Minded Manager, my interest peaked immediately. Written by John J. Murphy, the book carries the subtitle, A Modern-Day Parable about How to Apply A Course in Miracles in Business.

I’ve owned a copy of A Course in Miracles for many years, and I’ve yet to work my way through it. This felt like a Divine tap on the shoulder, an invitation to learn more and go deeper.

Check out this sincere review of Miracle Minded Manager…and discover the connection between the two books.

Miracle Minded Manager Title Meme

Miracle Minded Manager Author John J. Murphy

John J. Murphy is a global business consultant, speaker, spiritual teacher and author. He is founder and CEO of Venture Management Consultants, Inc., a firm that specializes in creating high performance work environments.

As a business consultant John provides services to some of the world’s leading organizations including BMW, Chase, GM, Hilton, Target Stores and the US Navy. John’s trained thousands of people from 50+ countries and mentored dozens of project teams. He delivers keynotes and leads seminars world wide. He is the author of 19 books and he’s featured frequently on radio and television shows and in newspapers nationwide. Learn more about John at his website,

Miracle Minded Manager is the sequel to Murphy’s Agent of Change: Leading a Cultural Revolution, although it is not necessary to read that book before reading this one.

Miracle Minded Manager Book

Miracle Minded Manager Synopsis

We are all familiar with stress and anxiety, unfortunately, as a part of life and business. However, what if those feelings are self-imposed states of mind? And what if we’ve all accepted the ego-thought system as the normal way of seeing, thinking and believing? How important is mindset and our belief systems, to creating the lives that we live and the work that we do?

John answers those questions in Miracle Minded Manager. He teaches us how to get out of our own way by shifting thinking and seeing life, ourselves and others, differently. John does this by integrating the teachings of A Course in Miracles, a spiritual self-study program, with other life lessons in Miracle Minded Manager. We are given tools to eliminate stress and live in deep peace.

John accomplishes this by presenting truths through a unique modern-day parable. In the story, Jack MacDonald, the CEO of a struggling company, feels trapped. Jack, the company and the employees are all stuck in old ways of doing things and old ways of thinking.

Jack turns to business consultant Jordan McKay, who uses spiritual practices to help him work through the challenges, from the past and the present. The parable offers valuable lessons on how to overcome fear and eliminate stress at work and at home, resulting in a “peace that passes all understanding”.

Miracle Minded Manager Stack of Books
My journal and A Course in Miracles became my companions to Miracle Minded Manager.

My Thoughts on Miracle Minded Manager

What a beautiful, thought provoking read. A couple of chapters in and I appreciated the way truths are presented via a fictionalized account. I typically read novels…or  “how-to” books. Miracle Minded Manager combines the two styles to create a story that is easy to read and yet deeply insightful. The book is rich with tips and techniques for alleviating stress and moving away from ego driven thoughts.

I quickly found myself caught up in Jack’s story of growth and transformation as he shifts his thinking and his beliefs. The beauty of this book is that it reads like a novel and yet the teachings are anything but fictional. I’m well aware of the difference that shifting mindset makes. Jack’s journey away from stress and ego-based thinking exemplifies everyone’s journeys. It’s been mine for the last 12 years.

Reading Miracle Minded Manager stirred within me the desire to delve into A Course in Miracles. I pulled my copy of the book from the shelf, grabbed a journal and began working through the lessons. Although I do not complete a lesson daily, I am steadily working my way through the 365 sections. The impact of reading John’s parable and working through the lessons in A Course in Miracles is profound and life changing.

Miracle Minded Manager and A Course in Miracles

Let Go of the Stress

I highly recommend John’s book, whether you manage a company or not. Miracle Minded Manager is a book for living a better life, period. You do not have to work through A Course in Miracles at the same time, although I suspect you will want to at least check this book out.

A few times in the last decade I’ve picked up a book that transferred to me an intense feeling of quiet peace and joy, just from the act of reading it. Miracle Minded Manager is such a book. I finished it and immediately decided to read it again, slowly, allowing the truths to settle deeply.

John shares,

“We all get in our own way from time to time by doubting ourselves and thinking inside a box…a paradigm…that doesn’t exist. It could be a ‘rule’ we follow, like we have to work 40 hours per week, eat three meals a day or wear certain clothing styles. We spend countless hours trying to find ways to improve performance and results inside these ‘boxes’. Entire industries are being disrupted by innovations challenging old paradigms.

The same is true in our personal lives. If we can find innovative ways to work four hours a day, or three days a week, why not? In healthcare, if we can find ways to prevent illness and disease, rather than treat it, what might that look like? This is what miracle minded management is all about. It is about challenging old paradigms with a truly open and fearless mind.”

What does such a life look like, indeed? Let’s find out.

Miracle Minded Manager Journal
I’m writing my own story…

Check out John’s books and these journals from Amazon:



Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.





Epic Continent Book Review

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Thank you to Smith Publicity for sending me the book Epic Continent for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

Although I frequently receive offers of books to read, for review purposes, I rarely accept. Honestly, I just don’t have the time to read that I once had, as I build a business around my blogs.

Occasionally, however, a book catches my attention and my keen interest. Such is the case with Epic Continent, by Nicholas Jubber.

These words intrigued me:

What can the classics tell us about today’s turbulent Europe? Award winning travel writer Nicholas Jubber presents a fascinating modern day travelogue through the epic poems of Europe.

Epic Continent documents Nicholas’ journey across Europe, from Greece to Iceland, tracing the enduring poems of old to discover the connection to Europe’s roots. That beautiful combination of travel, discovery and literature drew me in.

This is my review of Epic Continent.

Epic Continent Book Review Title Meme

Travel Writer Nicholas Jubber

Nicholas Jubber is a writer and traveler, with a passion for history. By his own admission, he is  fascinated by storytelling, nomadism, exploration and the connections…or misconnections…between past and present. He is a graduate of Oxford University and the author of four books. (See his books at the end of this post.)

Epic Continent presented itself as an idea during a family road trip across Europe. Jubber’s three year old son pointed out a mural of the hero Siegfried slaying the dragon, from the medieval tale Nibelungenlied.

Jubber kept thinking about that epic story, and others like it, and the influence they had on future tales and authors such as JRR Tolkien. He shares that what drew him into his own epic journey was the symmetry of the motifs and plot strands in those stories, that “stitched the continent together in a patchwork quilt of storytelling”.

A few months after his family trip, Nicholas headed out again on a solo trip. He selected six epic poems, all composed during or after times of great change in Europe. He desired to follow the stories, and their characters, across the continent.

Nicholas Jubber
Nicholas Jubber, author of Epic Continent.

Epic Means “To Say”

Nicholas was especially drawn to stories with an oral background.

Epic derives from the Greek word epein, which means “to say”. To be truly epic, says Jubber, a story must be sayable. Words spoken aloud have great power. The ancient Greeks used the word kelethmos, which translates to “enchantment”. I immediately connected with this, as enchantment is my word for the year.

The six chosen tales weave that powerful and far-reaching enchantment. They sunk deep roots in Europe, becoming part of the culture of the continent while at the same time, helping to form it.

Nicholas set out on his journey, seeking answers to three questions:

  1.  What did the stories do to create Europe?
  2. Are they still worth reading?
  3.  And can they help us to understand Europe today?

Epic Continent

These are the epic stories and the regions that Jubber journeyed through:

Odyssey – Greece and Turkey – One of two ancient Greek poems by Homer, about the hero Odysseus and his journey home after the fall of Troy.

Kosovo Cycle – The Balkans – Serb poetry about the events before the Battle of Kosovo in 1389.

Song of Roland – Western Europe – Poem based on the Battle of Roncevaux Pass in 788, during the reign of Charlemagne.

Nibelungenlied – Central Europe – This German poem tells the story of dragon slayer Siegfried at the court of the Burgundians, and the revenge of his wife, Kriemheld.

Beowulf – Britain & Scandinavia – Heroic poem about Beowulf, who comes to the aid of the king of the Danes, who is under attack from the monster Grendel.

Njal’s Saga – Iceland – Thirteen century saga that tells of the events between two friends, Njal and Gunnar, from 960 to 1020.

The book is divided into sections that match the epic stories and regions. A summary of each story is written at the beginning of the corresponding chapter. Jubber traveled through 18 countries as he followed these tales, tracing the plotlines of the stories.

Epic Continent Map
Map of Nicholas’ journey.

My Thoughts About Epic Continent

Nicholas Jubber writes in such an engaging way. He honestly shares his journey and the impact the tales have on him and on the people in each region. For these aren’t outdated stories. We discover, with Jubber, that the stories are alive throughout Europe, celebrated and expanded upon.

From a refugee camp in Chios to a puppeteer in Sicily to medieval churches in marshy East Anglia, Jubber trekked across Europe, ending his long quest in Iceland. As he explored the influence the stories had on European culture, he talked to people, asked questions, listened, walked everywhere, and slept where he could find a spot to claim for the night. He experienced Europe, country by country, as viewed through the lens of these epic poems.

Savor Epic Continent

The book created in me the desire to revisit those ancient stories. And it cultivated appreciation for the influence they’ve had on other authors, such as JRR Tolkien and Michael Crichton, and the countless retelling of the tales in other books and movies.

Epic Continent is a book to savor with a cup of hot tea. It is one to enjoy, while pondering the continuing enchantment of ancient tales. Nicholas is himself a gifted bard, a wandering storyteller, weaving his own magical tale with the epics as a backdrop. And it is a tale worth reading.

Did Nicholas get answers to his questions? He did. I’ll let you discover them in the book.

Epic Continent with Tea

Pick up your copy of Epic Continent below, along with Jubber’s other books:


Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.

Wreck this Journal

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Have you heard of the Wreck this Journal book?

Me either, until my granddaughter Aubrey introduced me to it. This creative kid ordered the book for herself and couldn’t wait to show me this unique twist on journaling.

Not only did Aubrey want to share her journal-in-progress with me, she felt sure I’d enjoy owning such a book myself. I loved the idea of working through our journals together. To encourage our Yaya/grandchild adventure, Greg purchased the book for me!

Aubrey is right. This is not your typical journal. It breaks the rules and pushes us beyond our comfort zones in the process. And, it is extraordinarily fun!

Wreck This Journal Title Meme

About Wreck this Journal

Created by conceptual artist and author Keri Smith, this paperback book is part journal, part sketch pad and part scrapbook. On each page a suggestion offers ideas on how to use the book.

“Document your dinner. Rub, smear, splatter your food. Use this page as a napkin.”

“Poke holes in this page, using a pencil.”

“Write or draw with your left hand.”

“Hide this page in your neighbor’s yard.”

“Tear this page out. Put it in your pocket. Put it through the wash. Stick it back in.”

The idea is to free up creativity by doing things that may at first induce a bit of discomfort, especially for adults. As children, we are not taught to wreck books, and of course this journal is not teaching disrespect. Instead, it encourages free thinking, expressiveness and outside the box activities.

Wreck This Journal Dinner Page

Wreck This Journal Dirt Page

Wreck This Journal, Express Creativity

There are pages in the Wreck This Journal book for doodling and drawing. Colored pencils, markers, crayons and watercolor paints are perfect for completing these pages. One page encourages the use of lots of tape. Many pages come with instructions to tear out the page or rip or poke or cut through the paper. Others urge the owner to get messy….with food, liquids or dirt.

Beyond the simple instructions on each page, the book owner is free to carry out the mission in any way that she or he chooses. Part of the fun of this journal is letting the imagination run wild and being clever in completing the activities.

If you need inspiration there are a ton of YouTube videos and photos online in which journal owners share their own creative ideas. Aubrey and I enjoy doing some pages together and having FaceTime chats on our phones where we show each other what pages we’ve completed that day. We discuss ideas too or come up with some outrageous way to accomplish a wacky activity.

Wreck This Journal Stickers

Wrecfk This Journal Pressed Page

Wreck This Journal and Go Beyond Your Comfort Zone

I love that Wreck This Journal teaches the idea of going beyond, on several levels.

It encourages creativity, trying new experiences and getting out of our comfort zones. I know, from personal experience, that doing those three things opens up perspectives and broadens the mind. Expressing creativity is an invitation for inspiration to show up, with a continual stream of fresh ideas.

This journal delights me because as one who has always treated books with the upmost care, it’s very freeing to toss this one around and deliberately mess it up. I welcome activities that shake up old beliefs and ways of doing things. I’m enjoying the process of messy creation.

My intention is to carry Wreck This Journal to Scotland with me next week…and see what adventures I can have with it there.

My favorite thing about the journal, however, is that my granddaughter knows me so well that she knew I’d be intrigued with this book. Although I’m sure the author had kids and pre-teens in mind when she created the book, the journal is actually suitable for all creatives of all ages. I love the cleverness of it, and Aubrey knew that I would.

Wreck this Journal Aubreys Page 1

 Aubreys Page 2

Pick Up a Copy of Wreck This Journal

I’m grateful for my granddaughter’s recommendation and for the fun we’ve already had, sharing this experience of wrecking a journal, together. Looking for a unique gift for a creative child, teen or adult? Or are you feeling the urge to express creativity in fresh new ways? Aubrey and I highly recommend Wreck This Journal.

Order your copy of Wreck This Journal by clicking on photo above. And enjoy!

Looking for a great inspirational read for this summer? Check out We Carry Kevan.

Cindy Goes Beyond is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program provides a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to, all at no extra cost to you.

More fun books by Keri Smith: