Quotable Sunday

It’s Quotable Sunday. I love quotes, and I thank Toni at A Daily of Toni for creating the opportunity to share a few of my favorite quotes. This week I decided to focus on Success. I chose Success because I’ve had to make a decision regarding my mother, placing her in a Nursing Home temporarily for rehabilitation. I lost my father 10 years ago.

I’ve spent hours this week-end thinking about who I am, where I’ve been, and where I intend to go. I looked at the pictures of my beautiful daughter and grandson, my most precious possessions.  I know that my mother and father are the foundation of my Success. How else could I end up here from where I came from.  They never stopped encouraging, supporting or loving me, and that has truly been the reasons for my success. Here’s to you Mom and Dad:

No matter what accomplishments you make, somebody helped you.
Althea Gibson

If you have achieved any level of success, then pour it into someone else. Success is not success without a successor.
Jesse Jackson

Most people search high and wide for the keys to success. If they only knew, the key to their dreams lies within.
Heram Cain

I just try to be the best I can be and hope that is the best ever.
Tiger Woods

There is in this world no such force as the force of a person determined to rise. The human soul cannot be permanently chained.
W.E.B. Dubois

You’re not obligated to win. You’re obligated to keep trying to do the best you can every day.
Marian Wright Edelman

I try to do the right thing at the right time. They may just be little things, but usually they make the difference between winning and losing.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

I’ve always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come. I don’t do things half-heartedly. Because I know if I do, then I can expect half-hearted results.
Michael Jordan

The first quote by Althea Gibson and the last by Michael Jordon are my favorites. Leave us a comment and let us know your favorite Success Quote. We would also like to know who has been a major contributor to your success. Be sure to visit A Daily Dose of Toni for quotes.

Lunch With A Friend

I had lunch this week with friend at one of my favorite restaurants, The Bavarian Inn. I absolutely this place. It’s a local restaurant that specializes in German crusine, but they have the best crab cakes and whipped potatoes. The decor is wonderful and they have a great view of their chalets, which have great paintings.


While having lunch with a friend a question crossed my mind. Have you found that food tastes better when you’re enjoying it with a good friend? I’ve taken a look at my friendships over the last few months, and I have few people that I consider a friend. Now to some that may not be a good thing, but to me it shows that I’ve matured and I’ve learned that you can only have a few friends. I have associates, but I can count my true friends on 1 hand.

The majority of them have been in my life for a long time. They’ve stood by me through marriage, motherhood, divorce and now my current relationship. They were there to hold me and wipe my tears when I lost my father to cancer. They’ve fixed soup when I was sick and vowed to take care of my daughter if anything ever happened to me. They’ve stood by me when I’ve made a complete fool out of myself and said things that I later regretted. They’ve stood by me when I’ve made brilliant decisions and not so brilliant decisions. At every turn of my life, they’ve been there. These people have made my life easier with a kind word, a hug, or a pat on the back. These are the people who I call my friends.

What’s your definition of a friend? Leave us comment and tell us about your friendships.

Lunch Tote Give Away

Is this not adorable! Say good bye to the little brown bag, you can carry your lunch in style. We found this fabulous tote at Tote Town. Not only do they have great lunch totes, you can find bible cases, garment bags, diaper bags and cosmetics bags. They also monogram or you have the option of personalizing the item with your name.
The laptop bags caught my eye too. The colors are fun and bright. They’re perfect for Today’s Woman. I travel, and leaving my laptop behind is not an option. These laptop bags would be so much easier for me to get through the airports than my bag on wheels. I would make a line of people behind me so happy if I would leave that piece of luggage at home, lol. This grandma gives Tote Town 3 snaps and a booty shake. If you’re looking for a great baby shower gift, you must check out their diaper bags. They’re trendy and the prices are great.

Tote Town is giving one of our readers a Lunch Tote. You get to choose your favorite. Don’t you love these sponsors. I guarantee you will receive lots of compliments on this fabulous find. Here’s how you can win: Visit www.totetown.com. Leave us a comment on your favorite lunch tote. Be sure to browse the other bags while you’re there. These bags will make great gifts.

Want extra credit:

Follow our blog (Upper Left)
Follow me on Twitter and tweet about our give away (On the right)
Subscribe to our Giggles & Sugar Kisses’ Newsletter www.gigglesnsugarkisses.com
Subscribe to our Blog (Upper Left)
Add my button to your blog. (Left Side)

This give away will end April 23, 2009 at mid-night. The give away is open to US and Canada residents 18+ only.

Good Luck!

Sylvan 3rd Grade Books Give Away

As my readers know, Giggles & Sugar Kisses is an advocate of reading. In order to read, you must have a good concept of reading comprehension, vocabulary and spelling. Good reading skills start at home and at an early age. As a lover of books, I started my daughter reading by taking her to the library and later joining book clubs and visiting book fairs.

I decided that I would promote more books on my blog in 2009 and encourage parents to start reading and working with their children early to ensure a successful future. I believe we as adults should be examples for our children.

I was thrilled when Meg Rushton, Associate Publicist, from Random House asked me to review 3rd and 4th grade vocabulary/spelling activity and exercise books on my blog. I decided to use my niece and nephew to test the books. Both are in the 3rd grade.

They both enjoyed the activities and both did well. The books allow children to check their answers, they have Check It, the answers on various pages. What’s interesting is my niece is in a private school and getting a first rate education. Her tuition is more per year than some people’s salary. Her environment is small classes and unlimited attention from her teachers. My nephew attends a public school with classes of 20 – 25 other children and limited attention from his teachers.

My nephew did well because he receives unlimited attention at home and is encouraged to spend time reading, doing his home work daily, and being challenged with activitiy books and computer games that support education.

The books we tested are used by Sylvan Learning. Sylvan has been in business for thirty years and is a trusted partner with parents across the country. Their workbooks are fun, feature activities, stories, and games for all ages. Students have proven that they can develop skills needed to achieve the highest academic levels by using their books.

We’re giving away two 3rd Grade workbooks, Reading Comprehension and Vocabulary Success. You could be a winner. Here’s how: Visit Sylvan Learning and browse their site. Leave a comment on what books would benefit your children and a valid email address. Give Away ends April 1, 2009 at midnight and open to US Residents 18+ only. Posts with invalid email addresses will be disqualified.

Want extra credit:
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Good luck!

Baby Dipper Bowl Give Away

Need to free up a hand when you feed your infant? Wish the bowl didn’t move when your toddler eats? The Baby Dipper Bowl is your answer. Barbara Schwartz holds the patent on this ingenious invention and owns http://www.babydipper.com/

I was excited when Barabar asked me to review The Baby Dipper Bowl. We’re always on the look out for products that make make life easier for mom. When I received the set, I was impressed. I love the color of the bowl and the shape was well thought out. The shape helps with placing the food onto the spoon and the spoon rests in the bowl easily. Great concept if you have the baby in your arms rather than the high chair, which happens often when visiting friends or grandma.

The spoon is contoured with a contrasting handle in yellow. This is a great stimulation for baby. The bowl has a non-slip base to help prevent sliding. This benefit is two-fold, great bonus for mom keeping the bowl stationary while feeding baby and a great bonus for toddlers learning to feed themselves.

The bowl is great for cereal or apple sauce for infants and toddler’s fruits or spaghetti. This set would be a great practical baby shower or new baby gift for a first time mother too. The Baby Dipper Bowl gets two snaps and a booty shake. It goes in grandma’s bag for sure.

One of our readers will be the recipient of The Baby Dipper Bowl too. How awesome is that! The packaging is very nice, it’s ready for gift giving when received. Here’s how you can win? Visit The Baby Dipper Bowl and let us know what you like about the set. Please leave a valid email address. Posts with invalid addresses will be disqualified Give Away will end April 1, 2009 at mid-night and is open to US and Canada Residents 18+ only.

Want extra entries:

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Good Luck!

Leg Huggers Give Away

Love to keep your baby fashionable? We found the perfect product. Adorable Leg Huggers for baby. They are fabulicious and available in variety of styles. Not only are they adorable, but they are functional as well. They fit perfectly over baby’s chubby legs and provide a layer of warmth under dresses or while they’re roaming around the house in Mom’s favorite onesie. I love the fact that they help protect baby’s knees while crawling too.
Worried about hypoallergenic problems? Don’t, they’re made from Bamboo. Yes, I said bamboo. It’s the new cotton. Bamboo is more antibacterial than other fabrics like cotton or wool, which are very absorbent and often hold the dampness in. Bamboo keeps moisture away.
I was so pleased with the variety of styles Leg Huggers offers its customers. They offer the Bow Leg Huggers shown, popsicles, flowers, butterflies and more. They are sooooo soft and the packaging is great. They arrive ready for gift giving.
You could win the Leg Huggers shown and enjoy this great product for yourself. Here’s how: Visit Leg Huggers and let us know which is your favorite pair. I love the bows shown and the popsicles. So cute! Come back and leave us a comment with your email address and we will randomly select a winner from the posts.
For extra credit do the following:
Follow this blog. (Upper left corner).
Follow me on Twitter and tweet about this give away. (Button on the right).
Subscribe to this blog.
Blog About This Give Away.
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This give away will end March 15, 2009 at midnight and is open to US and Canada Residents 18+.  Entries with invalid email addresses will be disqualified.

Quotable Sunday

It’s Quotable Sunday thanks to Toni at A Daily Dose of Toni. I love Quotable Sunday. It’s an opportunity for me to reflect on the quotes that I share with my readers. Because it’s Black History Month, I decided to use African Proverbs or quotes from African Americans for Quotable Sunday during the month of February. I hope you enjoy them.

All great achievements require time. – Maya Angelou

There are two kinds of worries — those you can do something about and those you can’t. Don’t spend any time on the latter. – Duke Ellington

I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody. – Bill Cosby

I know that you cannot hate other people without hating yourself. – Oprah Winfrey

Character, not circumstances, makes the man. – Booker T. Washington

If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else. – Booker T. Washington

We hope that you enjoyed our quotes. Leave us a comment and let us know which is your favorite. Be sure to visit A Daily Dose of Toni for more quotes.

This Murder’s Friend Contacted Me

I had an interesting response to the review of this book, Out Of Control. On Thursday, January 29, I received an email response from Amy Redus. Amy stated that she and Clara Harris were best friends. Needless to say, I was shocked. I always look forward to comments on my posts, but to have someone respond that is connected to the murder was totally unexpected.

I’ve asked myself if it would be unethical to share my conversation with Amy with my readers, and I’ve concluded that it is not. I have removed her email address. My blog and the comments made are open to everyone. Also, Ms. Redus stated that her intentions was to post a comment on the blog as you will see below.

Here’s Ms. Redus comment:

—– Original Message —–
From: Amy Redus
To: rhonda@gigglesnsugarkisses.com
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2009 12:56 PM
Subject: Out of Control

Hi Rhonda,
I enjoyed your blog and tried to post on it but am not sure if I was successful or not. I saw that you had read Out of control by Steven Long. I am just wondering what you though of Clara Harris before and after reading his book? I read the book also and thought he did a pretty good job.
Thanks,
Amy

Here’s my response:

—– Original Message —–
From: Rhonda Gales
To: Amy Redus
Sent: Thursday, January 29, 2009 7:34 PM
Subject: Re: Out of Control

Hi Amy,

Thanks for stopping by. I really didn’t know Clara Harris before reading the book except what I had heard on Oprah, so I hadn’t formed an opinion. After reading the book, I believed she was a scorned woman who lost sight of what was really important. God, herself, and her children. If a man chooses to stray, there’s nothing you can do to stop him. You can loose weight, color your hair, buy new clothes, but that won’t change his direction if he decides that’s how it’s going to be.

I can understand her anger and frustration. She built a million dollar business with this man, helped raise his daughter, gave him twins and maintained his home. It had to be difficult to face the fact that he was willing to throw it away for the Office Assistant. I would have fought back in the court room, but it wouldn’t have been for murder. He would have been facing adultery charges.

We as women forget, that a man can’t make us or break us unless we allow him. She could have moved on with the business, home, children and someone who really appreciated her. Now she has nothing, but a life behind bars. Such a sad situation for the children.

Amy’s Response:

From: Amy Redus
To: Rhonda Gales
Sent: Friday, January 30, 2009 7:58 AM
Subject: Re: Out of Control

You are right, only one thing she didn’t mean to kill him. She wanted to stop him from leaving with her. She knew Gail or had heard Gail was lesbian and knew that she was just after David’s money. She meant to run into gails car and just lost it. She was just at her breaking point. She happens to be my best friend and I know that in her right mind she would never in her right mind even hurt David. You were right again and she says her priorities were out of line. To her David was her King/God she thought he was everything so when he betrayed her like that it was very emotional. Even David’s mother who is like a moo to me says Clara loved David too much. I was just curious about what you though. Oprah went to Mountain view to interview Clara not really liking Clara but mainly going for the story. She left the interview with a better understanding of her emotional state.
Yes things would have been so much easier if she would have just left that night but she did Allow David to break her and something in her snapped and she lost control of the situation. She has lost everything but she has gained a deeper relationship with God, her friends and many people He has sent to help her through this time. She has served 6 years and we are in the beginning stages of looking for a parole attorney for her.
Amy

I sent another response to Amy. I didn’t agree with everything she stated in her response, so I had to voice my opinion on several of her statements. I’m currently waiting for her comment.

While waiting for Ms. Redus response, I decided to check her out. I probably shoud have done that before my initial response, lol. Anyway, I googled Ms. Redus and she is truly connected to Clara Harris. According to the transcripts on CNN Connie Chung interviewed Ms. Redus on January 23, 2003. According to Connie Chung, Amy stated that she just knew Clara Harris through church. From reading the transcript, it doesn’t appear that Amy knew Clara Harris very well.

My search on Yahoo turned up additional information. From that search, it would appear that Ms Redus and Clara Harris have established a closer relationship. Amy Redus speaks of Clara Harris at Friends For Clara Harris and another site also entitled Friends For Clara Harris.

I’m unsure if I will hear from Amy Redus again, but I welcome her comments and I’m striving for an interview with her regarding her friendship with Clara Harris and the site The Friends Of Clara Harris and their cause. Inspite of our different view points of Clara Harris’ actions, I believe that we have connected for a reason. I will keep each of you in the loop, and I welcome your comments on this post.

Quotable Sunday

It’s Quotable Sunday thanks to Toni at A Daily Dose of Toni. I haven’t participated in a few weeks, but I decided this Sunday would be a perfect time for me to get back on track. In honor of Black History Month, I will be using African Proverbs for the month of February. I hope you enjoy them:

*It Take A Village To Raise A Child
Hilary Clinton made this African Proverb famous. It was true than, and it is true now.

*We start As fools and become wise through experience.
None of us are born with tools for life. We learn as we go and from our experiences. I look at each day as a learning experience with the expectation that I will go to bed knowing more than I did when I woke.

*Don’t set sail on someone else’s star
Don’t wish for someone else’s fortune. Be happy for them, but set your own destiny. You will enjoy the experience so much more when you arrive.

*Confiding a secret to an unworthy person is like carrying grain in a bag with a hole.
Oh yes, your secret will leak out little by little. Be careful what you say, and who you say it to.

*There is no medicine to cure hatred
Be kind to one another. When you open your heart to love and respect, there is no room for hatred.

I hope that you have enjoyed these proverbs, I have enjoyed sharing them with you. Let us know which is your favorite, and don’t forget to visit A Daily Dose of Toni for more quotes.

True Crime Book Reviews: Clara Harris Murder

Out of control is an excellent true crime story. As you know, I love true crime books and I’ve decided to read more in 2009. I saw Clara Harris on Oprah years ago. I didn’t see the entire episode, I just remembered a silver Mercedes being involved and she was a dentist accused of murdering her dentist husband.

While browsing books in Borders I came across Out Of Control and decided to add it to my reading arsenial. I’m glad I added it, I couldn’t put it down.

David and Clara Harris were married on Valentine’s day. How romantic. They built a million dollar dental business and purchased a mansion. Clara was helping to raise David’s daughter, who she adored.  She gave birth to twins, which put the icing on the cake.  Life was good, until David started an affair with the office assistant. Clara had wrapped herself in their home and family and was unaware of David’s infidelity.  Everyone was talking behind her back.  Even her step daughter who worked in the office was aware of her father’s unfaithful behavior.

Oh, but what’s done in the dark will come to light.  Clara soon learned of the betrayal. She fired the office assistant and hoped to save her marriage.  She wasn’t willing to throw everything away that easily.  David agreed to work on the marriage. He arranged to meet Gail and end their relationship formally.

Clara no longer trusted David and decided to hire a private investigator to ensure David was not straying from the marriage again. David realized that he had true feelings for Gail, the office assistant, and he missed her. He told his wife how he felt. He arranged a meeting with Gail, but not to end their relationship. Clara sensed it and became obsessed with her husband’s whereabouts. On the night of the meeting, she and her step-daughter drove around the city trying to locate David. The destination would end at the Hilton Hotel. Clara came up with a scheme to flush David out. She called his cell phone to tell him one of the children was sick and he needed to come home. David didn’t move fast enough so Clara called again. She headed to the elevator so she could confront him.

Next, the elevator doors open and there stands David and Gail holding hands.  Clara lost it. She beat the crap out of Gail, ripping off her blouse and pounding her head against the floor. Gail is in shock, David had told her that he and Clara had an open marriage.  Security escorts Gail to her car with David trailing behind. Clara and her step daughter leave the hotel and head toward her silver S-Class Mercedes. Clara realizes that her fairy tale marriage is over, her world has crumbled. Once inside the vehicle, Clara points the car toward David and accelerates.  As if that wasn’t enough, she throws the car in reverse and backs over him. Hell have no fury like a woman scorned.

The author did a great job bringing out the characters and details in the book. I would suggest that you purchase the book so you can experience it for yourself. It’s a great read!