All Opinions Are Welcome Here! by Liz Nord

Secrets of Moms will be discussing serious, funny, and everyday topics as well as sensitive controversial hot topics. The Secrets of Moms writers come from diverse backgrounds and each have their own voice, beliefs, and perspectives based on their own experiences. We will write openly and honestly to share ideas and encourage discussion.

Secrets of Moms is a place for people to discuss real issues parents and children are experiencing today. You may not always agree with everything that is written and hey–the writers might not even agree with each other sometimes, but it’s good to be open to varying viewpoints. If you agree or disagree with a writer’s opinion, make yourself be heard, but please keep personal attacks out of your comment or the comment will be deleted. It’s fantastic to debate and discuss issues and it’s great we all have unique viewpoints. Your thoughts are all welcome here. We love your comments!

If you haven’t already met all the contributors, here they are:

Liz Nord is the creator of Secrets of Moms. She is a wife and mother of two daughters ages six and nine. She loves family, running, reading, seeking knowledge, baking, laughing, innovating, traveling, in-depth conversations, sunshine, and outdoor adventures. She earned a B.A. in Communications, and completed graduate editing courses at the University of Washington. Liz has published articles in a number of magazines, newspapers, and on numerous websites. She has been a guest on the Leeza Gibbons talk show, Hollywood Confidential, and serves on the Editing Certificate Advisory Board at the University of Washington. She is also the co-creator of Plus-Size Models Unite.  Liz is passionate about promoting healthy self-esteem, positive body image, and confidence.  She believes in cultivating who you are truly meant to be and embracing your unique self.

Cheyney Barrieau is a mother of two beautiful children – Lulu, 18 months, and Max, 3 months. She is born and raised in New York City and now resides in West Hartford, CT with her college sweetheart hubby, Gib. Cheyney was a straight-sized model with Wilhelmina Models and moved to WCurve after having two children back to back. As well as being a full-time mom, she finds the time to continue her modeling career, showing young girls it’s perfectly fine to show off those curves!

Margaret Dilloway is a wife, mother of three, and author of the novel HOW TO BE AN AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE, out now from Putnam Books. She’s at work on her second novel, due in 2012. She lives in San Diego, California.

Andrea Dodd is a fully domestic homeschooling mom of a newly blended family; two girls of her own, ages 10 and 7; and inherited son, 8. When Andrea is not teaching, you’ll find her coaching and playing volleyball, baking, reading with a glass of red, or behind the lens, growing her budding photography career, Life iluli Fotography, which has been featured on Plus Size Models Unite.

Andrea went to a Seattle Junior College, and then off to Arizona State University, studying Nutrition. She’s passionate about family (including those sisters by choice), health, positive living, and relishing those glimpses of momentary bliss mothering bestows.

Sandra Ellison is a single working mom to two Lovely Girls: Grace (7) and Anastasia (5). She grew up in Seattle, WA. She’s lived in Portland, OR; Chicago, IL; and just about all over Washington State from Pullman to Puyallup. She was blessed to be a stay-at-home mom for five years when her first baby was born. Sandra went to Washington State University to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and then earned her Master’s in Business Administration. She enjoys spending time with her girls, playing volleyball, and exercising. Sandra has kept a journal since she was fourteen years old and has always found writing to be a great outlet.

Janell Kaufman is a graduate of Western Washington University with a degree in English Literature and Communications. She is a stay at home mom of a ten-year old girl and a, recently adopted, seven-year old boy. She over volunteers at her children’s school, is highly emotional (read: cries all the time), and often puts her foot in her mouth. Janell has been an avid journal keeper for over 25 years and is currently working on a fiction novel, when she can find the time. 

Cassandra Mack, MSW is a trained social worker, national girls’ empowerment expert and the founder of Strategies for Empowered Living Inc., a New York based human development company dedicated to helping people succeed and grow. She has written over ten highly-successful books including: “Cool, Confident and Strong: 52 Power Moves for Girls,” “The Busy Woman’s Little Book of Motivation,” and “Say It, See It, Believe It: The Affirmation Activity Journal for Girls and Their Mothers.” For more information about this contributing writer go to: www.strategiesforempoweredliving.com.

Molly Pitts grew up in a small town outside of Seattle. She attended Western Washington University looking to graduate with a degree in communications, but transferred to The Art Institute of Seattle to follow her love of filmmaking and video production. After graduating, she worked in the industry for a few years ending at The Gates Foundation where she was a video editor. Molly is now back in that same small town being a mom and laughing as much as she can at the craziness we call parenting. She has three girls’ ages five, three and 8 months. Her oldest and youngest are biological and the three-year old was adopted from Ethiopia. She joined their family when she was just six months old.

Tracie Stern is a mother of two boys aged six and three, plus-size model, and military spouse. When not modeling or writing, Tracie is running a consulting business called Understudies where she mentors and educates women, young girls, and models about different ways to excel at life and work. Because of Tracie’s unique lifestyle, her topics of conversation are often diverse and raising boys has its own set of rules. Tracie currently lives in VA with her Navy family. http://www.understudies.us/

Kate Tunnell is a new mom to a nine-week old son and a nine-year old stepson. She is a plus-size model who is originally from New Jersey—yes, the Jersey Shore. Kate worked in NYC, and then moved to Texas after meeting her husband on a model search tour. She loves making a home for her family and enjoys all the adventures of having a new baby. Kate loves telling young girls and women that it’s okay to have curves, embrace your body, and don’t think you have to be thin to be beautiful!

Nikki Yazxhi is a BEAUTY and LIFESTYLE WRITER who lives in Australia and has a gorgeous hubbie and two spunky little boys. Her background is magazines and her freelance stories have featured in COSMOPOLITAN, MARIE CLAIRE, and SHOP TIL YOU DROP. She loves (in no particular order) hanging out with her boys, blogging, the beach, dark chocolate, coffee, red wine, clean sheets, and snuggling on the couch on Friday nights! You can see more of Nikki at her website http://www.bellamumma.com/, where she writes about beauty, fashion, design, famous people, her life, and much more!

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