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Meet Jillian!

Jillian Smith is a mom to 3 amazing kiddos; Skylar who is 20, Grady who is 9 and Colin who is 5. She is married to Jeffrey, who is a Methuen police officer. The Smiths are your typical family fighting their way through this Covid time, with a little glitch; their 9 year old, Grady, is immune compromised. Grady was diagnosed with ALD, or Adrenoleukodystrophy on August 17, 2018. On top of ALD, a devastating brain disease, Grady is also battling Addisons disease. Grady had a successful bone marrow transplant in September 2018, which thankfully has stopped progression, but he continues to deal with complications from his transplant that keep him compromised.

Jillian says many people view her as an over the top mom, protecting her family during this pandemic, but she's willing to accept that to keep her family safe; I say, Jillian is a super mom who is fighting to keep her son safe, and help catalyze ALD testing in babies that could save millions of future babies.  Don't miss this heart felt conversation. Check out the links and information below to learn more about ALD, and help make a difference!

Check out @xoutald on FB and Instagram to join the team "can't stop Brock" and let them know you are from "Grady's Gladiators".


Meet Seneca!

Our nation is in an uproar right now.  Take the time to listen to my conversation with a family friend, Seneca Bryson, as we discuss how racism has impacted his life, and his parenting.  As a bi-racial family with four children of his own, he is constantly facing the reality  of what racism looks and feels like today, and what we can all do to help catalyze real change and make a difference.  Seneca shares his views, his hopes, and his call to action: we need to be in this together.  Almost every topic is covered here, from defunding the police, to the destructive looting and protesting, to what you can do as parents to authentically help make a difference; you may not agree with all of the campaigns, slogans, or actions, but if you don't agree the violence and brutality need to stop, it's time to reflect, listen, and grow.

Social-distancing is taking a toll on all of; especially our children. As parents we can choose to make our children's mental health and emotional well-being our top priority. After watching the video called COVID killed my son, and hearing that dad share his son's story, I wanted to share my reaction and hope, that we can all take mental health seriously, for ourselves and our children. It's ok to say this is too much, and intentionally choose what's important right now.

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Moms vs. COVID -19 Interview Series

Interview one:

Meet Ashley!  She is a mom to four beautiful children, and a nursing supervisor at Lawrence General Hospital.  Ashley shares her amazing, heartfelt story of trying to keep her family safe while battling COVID-19 at the hospital each day.  Don't miss her story and words of wisdom.

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Interview two:

Meet Stephanie!  She is working hard to find the right balance between caring for her two amazing children and running her social media engagement and growth business.  Stephanie shares her story of how she's managing life right now with the extra stressors COVID-19 has created.  Listen closely to hear Stephanie's beautiful ideas of what she's intentionally doing to keep herself healthy both mentally and physically, as well as support her family each day.

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Interview three:

Meet Sarah!  Sarah is a busy mom, wife, speech pathologist and confidence coach.  She is a mama to a teen and tween, and lives a very intentional life where she strives to be the light in a world full of darkness.  In her interview Sarah shares how she works hard to help others feel supported, heard, loved and cared for.  Her story is one that many mamas can relate to, as she is working hard to process all of the complex feelings and emotions that are surfacing as we cope with the trauma COVID-19 has created.  Don't miss her amazing advice on how she is choosing to embrace real life and thrive.

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Interview four: Meet Erin!  She is a mom to two handsome and active boys ages 8 and 10, and a sweet daughter who recently turned 1.  Erin is happily married, an active runner, and loves watching her boys play sports, especially hockey.  She is a public school teacher in New Hampshire and loves her job.  Erin is known for being able to connect with her students, helping them feel cared for, respected and safe.  She shares her story with us in this interview, and discusses the stress and anxiety of trying to raise three young children at home, help them with their school work, and run a virtual classroom.  A story that most teachers across the world can relate to, most moms who are teachers are feeling stretched too thin, and staying up at night hoping that what they are doing is enough for their students and their own families.  Don't miss Erin's authentic interview.

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Interview five.  Meet Ashley C!  Ashley and her husband are expecting their first child this May, and are beyond excited to meet their son.  As a full time teacher at a charter school Ashley's job has been impacted by COVID-19 as she is now working from home and supporting her students remotely.  Ashley courageously shares her story of losing her grandfather to COVID-19 this past week, as well as trying to cope with the new restrictions that hospitals and birth centers are creating to try and keep everyone safe.  Make sure you hear Ashley's story, it's full of ups and downs, but mostly, full of hope.

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Interview six.  Meet MaryJo!  She is a loving mother of three, and currently lives in Newbury, MA with her sweet family, two dogs and a cat.  Life enthusiast, and entrepreneur, MaryJo is a huge small busniess advocate.  She is committed and very involved in her children's school as well as her community, and several non-profits.  MaryJo shares daily snippets of joy through her Instagram blog @port2palm and aims to connect and bring simple joys to your everyday life.  Don't miss MaryJo's authentic story, of how she's doing her best to thrive during this very stressful time.

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