Fierce Women Dish

an artist, a journalist, an activist, a psychologist, a student, and a diva place a cup of nourishment on the table.

Workshops Hosted by Rosie! December 9, 2008

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This Year, I Will Finally…

Every January, millions of people make New Year’s Resolutions that are long forgotten by February.  In this workshop, participants will use journaling and discussion to focus in on a significant goal for the coming year and put a plan in place for achieving it. 


Date:  January 15, 2009 

Time:  4 pm – 5:30 pm 

Location: The Warehouse PAC, 9216-A Westmoreland Road, Cornelius, NC

Cost:  $22    


Writing Your Life


Self-reflection gives us a much needed pause.  It allows us a moment of inquiry, a moment to identify desire and potential.  Generating awareness and then moving to personal solutions takes time and thought, brainstorming and checking in, enough repetition to want to change our choices and build a new habit, and the knowledge of why this habit will be good for us when we want to revert.  Journaling predisposes us to a more successful embrace of our self and our choices.  In this workshop, participants will discuss the importance of journaling and will actively engage in a range of journaling tools and practices.  The first ten participants to sign up each receive a comprehensive journaling workbook as part of their class fees to encourage them in their practice.


Date:  January 20, 2009 

Time:  7 pm – 7:30 pm 

Location: The Warehouse PAC, 9216-A Westmoreland Road, Cornelius, NC

Cost:  $22    



Discovering Your Belief


This I Believe is a popular NPR series that invites everyday people to share a brief essay on something they absolutely believe to be true.  From the simple to the profound, essayists selected by NPR share their beliefs in radio spots aired locally and nationally.  In this workshop, participants will begin brainstorming and drafting a This I Believe statement that they may wish to complete and submit to NPR on their own for consideration.     


Date:  January 22, 2009 

Time:  4 pm – 5:30 pm 

Location: The Warehouse PAC, 9216-A Westmoreland Road, Cornelius, NC

Cost:   $22


To sign up for any of these workshops, email me or call (704) 859-5930.
Sign up for all three workshops for a total fee of $55. 


Does the current beauty culture erode our souls? November 25, 2008

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Donna: uh….yes. It is a culture that revolves around a specifically Caucasian ideal of eternal youth and a model-like body type that statistically only 2% of women in the world will have genetically. And because women are supposed to have achieved this ideal beauty naturally and not to have really worked at it at all, there is a level of secrecy held about any procedures done or diets followed that is misleading to the public at large.  This  proliferates the myth that those of us that don’t fit into these ideals have done something wrong…and if only we had—fill in the blank here, stayed of the sun, had more willpower, moisturized more regularly, eaten more veggies-we would easily achieve this beauty ideal, just  like these other uber-women presented in the media.

Jenee: Most defiantly yes!  I find it very disheartening that pop culture has become so fake, that idea of botox, breast implants, tummy tucks and liposuction have become a common day occurrence. Over 75% of the females I work with at the bar have gotten breast implants and everyone is under the age of 30, I know a 23 year old who is saving to have collagen injections in her lips! 

Amy: It depends on to what level you embrace the beauty culture.  If you are part of a subculture that embraces plastic surgery as a rite of passage or necessity, then yes.  If the beauty culture is for hair and make-up, then no.

Donna: Now, things have gotten somewhat better in the last years. There are a handful of examples of beauty that is outside this realm and I will always applaud and support these unique examples…but I will always want to see more.  The only thing we can do to counteract this effect of the typical beauty culture on our own psyche is to choose to celebrate and focus on the individual beauty of those real women around us…and set the example for our friends, and our sisters, daughters and nieces, to do the same.  

Rosie: The interesting thing about the beauty culture is that it is a choice.  We can choose to engage with what pop culture or mainstream society tells us is beautiful or we can choose not to—but choosing not to means that we have enough confidence to turn away and not doubt our judgment.  If we are choosing to turn away from that mainstream beauty standard and are doing it for the first time, then the first step is intention.  Thinking to yourself, “I have decided that I am defining beauty for myself” and then going for it by loving yourself as you are, loving others as they are, choosing to be happy everyday—not someday when you are blonde, tall, tan, thin, whatever- and knowing that your body is taking you everywhere you are going right now and deserves some respect for that.  Intention yields focus and focus allows what you desire to grow and become apparent.  Change our minds and we can change the beauty culture that rules over us.  The great thing is that body image isn’t static—it’s possible to grow no matter our history.  Too often, we believe that we will be content when our body changes.  Actually, we’ll be content only when our mind changes, when we allow ourselves to be content. 


Jenee: One does make the choice to participate or not.  But I feel like it gets harder and harder to turn away.  We are constantly bombarded by billboards, magazines you try to avoid at in the check out lane, advertisements in the bath room stalls that say “put your body in the hands of an artist” like the fact that I was created from tiny little DNA molecules isn’t creative enough.  Hell they have loans dedicated to plastic surgery now!

Amy: Adornment has been part of the human psyche though the ages.  It cab be a wonderful, soulful part of us rather than detrimental.  It is only with the advent of going under the knife and embracing the inner corset (extreme dieting) that physical adornment has become physically dangerous and therefore an erosion of our soul.

Donna: My final word on this is that it is imperative that you surround yourself with positive, fabulous women that believe in unique, individual beauty as you do. The alternative leads down a road of chasing after something that will never be caught…and who wants to waste any precious time on that?

Jenee: I think it’s important to surround yourself with strong women who love themselves.  Read magazines that don’t promote that kind of image like Bust or Ms.  Remind yourself of the reality of the situation and don’t give into the air brushed image.  Make an effort to tell little girls how smart they are not how pretty they look.  Trying to combat the media and modern day standards takes effort and courage!  Make the decision to live in reality and love people for who they are and not hate them for who their not. 


Sunset Club

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From Jenee:

Last week a friend of mine decided to have his birthday party at the Sunset Club.  I had mixed feelings about attending, hearing about the urinals was one thing but actually seeing them with the link Molly posted was just devastating.

I made the decision to go and had dinner at a near by restaurant before.  During dinner I chatted with the owner, his brother, and my girl friend about the bathroom situation.  Everyone was in complete agreement that it was not only disgusting and tacky but degrading and humiliating.

That’s when I decided I needed to see it for myself.

I walked into the club, had a shot, and marched straight for the mens bathroom. Opened the door and said “I want to see your demeaning urinals, you should be ashamed of yourselves what would your mothers say?!?!”

I stood there looking at plain white urinals.  There were no legs, no vagina starting at me…just a plain white urinal.  I turned to the bathroom attendant and asked what happened…he explained that there was such a public backlash that the club decided to remove them.

I was excited at first and then had a feeling of despair.  The fact that enough people thought it was a good idea to not only make them but also use them is just pathetic. 


Dove Real Beauty Workshop! November 19, 2008

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What is money for? Should we want it, save it, share it; try to earn equal amounts of it? At what lengths? October 18, 2008

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Amy: Money.   Money, money, money.  I don’t know how I feel about money.  It is a necessary evil.  I wish I didn’t need it or need to make sure I have enough of it for now and for the future.  As a 30 something making her way in the world, I am just beginning to really think about the money I need for my future and whether I have or will have enough money to support a child or my parents in the future.  I have begun to really appreciate my parents’ ability to make what money they have made in their lifetime go a long, long way in educating myself and my brother and caring for themselves in retirement. 

Jenee: I also come from a family in which both my parents came from nothing and have created something.  I know that I need to save for retirement, graduate school, emergency funds, rainy days and what ever else presents itself.  Like Amy it worries me because I want to be able to take care of my parents like they have so generously been able to care for me.

Amy: Money is for saving, spending, and sharing.  It’s for saving for the future and for a rainy day.  But also for spending on things that communicate to yourself that you value yourself.  Yoga, massage, acupuncture, a yummy meal, a favorite sweater that makes you smile whenever you wear it, a gift for a child, these are the things that money can be spent on that gives back.  Money is also for sharing.  I struggle with this and have guilt around the choices I make with sharing.  I don’t have that much to share and know that I either have to pick one organization to share with or not really be able to make a meaningful contribution anywhere. 

Jenee: Well at this point in my life I have very little money…I do however understand the negative emotions attached with the need for money.  Honestly I don’t even think it’s the need for money but the desire for the ability to take care.  I like paying for dinner when I go out with my friends, or being able to buy that perfect present, or donating to my church, ASPCA, or NPR.  I like having the ability to share it…feeling that you may be making someone else life a little easier.  I don’t know maybe it’s just a twisted American way of showing someone that you care.

Donna: I also think absolutely, YES, we should share it. Nothing has ever driven this point home to me more than becoming an active member of the arts community-specifically the theatre community— in which we always seem to be always scrapping around for money for productions. Money does make the world go around so we MUST support groups, events and causes we believe in with both our presence and our financial donations whenever we can.  This is a side note about money that I really want to pass on. A woman who used to own one of the cosmetic companies that I worked for many years ago wrote a book, and gave this tip for dating-she said she could read a man’s entire personality by his relationship with his money. She said that she had found that a man that was generous with his money was also generous in other areas of his life and personality—generous with his time, emotions, plans, etc.  And, interestingly enough, she found lack of generosity to correlate in an even bigger way! I must admit that I do find generosity very sexy too.  It alludes to a bigger world view and consciousness. But I happen to think her credo works for all people, not just men, and certainly not just for dating.

Jenee: As one of my jobs at the moment I work in a bar and its discusting to see how people flaunt their money and the reactions they get from it.  Its extremely disheartening to see how materialistically driven our society really is.  It’s funny that Donna mentions the generosity of someone.  When on a date I try… as coyly as possible…to see how much they tip.  I am not ashamed to say that I defiantly make a judgment on not only how they treat individuals in the service industry but also on how much they tip.  I make these judgments on how individuals react to homeless as well.  I think that treating everyone with the same amount of respect no matter what the job is important.

Donna: My personal view of money is that is provides quicker access and ease of opportunity. You can get access to situations and places and make opportunity for yourself without money –and many have-but it is definitely a harder road and you have to be much savvier. Maybe that’s why the stories of people that are self- made or have come up from nothing are so much more interesting…their lack of money requires them to more creative, ingenious and persistent to gain the access that they seek.

 We have to have it; in our society it is required to live and provide for yourself and your family. I have heard of barter systems that work, but for the most part, when you go to the grocery story—they want money in exchange for goods.

If we are fortunate to have enough, yes, we should make attempts at saving it…for the exact situation of economic crisis like we are involved in currently in our country. This easy to declare but much harder to put into practice.

Also easy to say, but harder to put into practice is that yes, we should try to earn equal amounts of it. But this whole subject is a big mystery since what most people are paid is kept a secret and the comparison is difficult.  It has been stated that women generally make .77 on the dollar versus men, but I also think women typically tend to underestimate their own value in the workplace.  (And maybe to the world? That’s another blog topic!) As a group, we do not negotiate as well as men in the initial offering of a job…which can also really put us at a deficit in terms of career long earnings potential. It’s important to go into these negotiations armed with as much info as possible, which requires some background work, game plan layout and possibly even role playing with a friend the actual dialog that would go down with the potential employer in this negotiation. I actually did this with a friend not too long ago and she was able to successfully negotiate more money for herself because we had come up with the arguments necessary–with all the stats to back it up– to prove she was worth the additional money.

Amy: I am aware that the more I think about money the more anxious and unhappy I become.  I have not chosen a career that brings in tons of money.  I would not change my career.  In terms of making equal amounts of money, one reason I don’t make tons of money is that I’m in a helping profession which is considered a female career.   I realize that I would not be happy in a corporate environment and at times I struggle with the idea that I make money for talking with people about their troubles.  But, when I think about money . . . I wonder . . . was this the smartest choice of careers?   In a practical way, probably not.  In terms of my soul, definitely.  


Beautiful song, message October 17, 2008

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From Crystal:

During this season of political ugliness and financial tumult, it’s good to have a reminder about what’s really important.

A Facebook friend posted a link yesterday to the video of “Better People” by Xavier Rudd, an Aussie singer/songwriter with a Jack Johnson vibe. It’s not red or blue. But it is about sharing.

The key truth that I heard: “I will care for you because you care for me.”

Watch it and pass it along if it moves you.


Fat Talk Free Week! October 14, 2008

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October 13-17, 2008

Delta Delta Delta and key partners are raising the nation’s consciousness about the dangers of “fat talk” and the impact it has on women’s self-esteem and confidence. This nationwide body activism event coincides with the official launch of Tri Delta’s body image education and eating disorders prevention program, Reflections.

Fat Talk Free Week is a five-day awareness effort sponsored by Tri Delta to draw attention to the damaging impact of fat talk and the “thin ideal” on today’s women in society. We’re asking women all over the country—young girls, college women, adult women, and mothers and daughter—to pledge to not fat talk for the full week. Each day, women will be given a daily “charge” of something positive they can do related to having a positive body image, while shining a spotlight on the issues and statistics of body image and eating disorders in women.

Friends don’t let friends Fat Talk.