Zulmara Maria

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Rick Najera at Casa 0101

Latinologues

Latinologues Alive and Well in Boyle Heights

Rick Najera opened at CASA 0101 in Boyle Heights on Friday, April 11, 2014  to a full house of eager theatre goers who were excited about seeing this one man show–and he did deliver– to a standing ovation, as only Rick could. In this beautiful gem hidden away in Boyle Heights amid the stunning artwork of Rick Ortega, Rick delivered a Broadway quality performance in the ‘hood. Not the Latinologues of Buford Gomez, but Almost White by Rick Najera.

He read from his book, told stories from his childhood, his past, and his present. He took us on a walk down memory lane, that was both funny, moving, theatrical, and lyrical. As Rick got into storytelling mode, he  not only regaled us with his voice, his mannerisms, and his way of connecting with the audience, but also with a series of technological sound effects, videos, pictures, and visuals that made his stories come alive.

We were there with him in the recovery room when he was in a coma, we were there when he received a phone call from the madrina of Latinas in Hollywood called to wish him well, we were there when he began opening his eyes, first coming to, and then making a recovery. We were there In Living Color with Eddie Olmos, we were there when the baseball broke the window.

The show is a beautifully orchestrated cacophony of sights, sounds, laughter, tears, and moments of silence and reflection. What Rick does so well is use comedy to make a “punto de reflexion” for the audience and he has the delivery down, masterfully using this technique to give one pause. One minute you are laughing at a joke about speaking Spanish and the next, wondering how could a whole generations have been so easily and quickly stripped of their language? The show will make you think…about what it means to be Latino, Mexican-American, Cubano-Americano, Puerto Rican, African-American and “almost white, but not quite…in these United States today.

The show is family friendly and Rick is doing a Q&A after the show, giving audiences a chance to ask him questions about the show, his life, Hollywood, and what happens to Latinos in Hollywood. He can answer the age old question, “Why do not see more Latinos in Hollywood portrayed as doctors, lawyers, engineers? Why don’t we see powerful and courageous role models among the Latinos in Hollywood?

Overall, this is a must see show that has a lot to offer. It will be playing:

  • Friday, April 25 at 8pm /Saturday, April 26 at 8pm /Sunday, April 27 at 5pm

Tickets $19.99 and are available HERE.

Do yourself a favor, grab a comadre or compadre or two, or three or four and go treat yourself to a night at the theatre. You will not be disappointed. Rick delivers as he has always done and makes Latinos in Hollywood proud!!!

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Zulmara Maria

Meditating and the Wandering Mind: how to quiet your mind for meditation

Celebrating Your Divinity

So you have decided you want to try meditation but your mind is constantly wandering and you can’t figure out how to get it back. I have learned 3 things as a wandering mind meditator who now craves meditative time:

  1. It is ok to let your mind wander, that is the inner tension, the inner chatter that needs to be released, listen to it, embrace it, and then let it go ( or not, sometimes, the chatter just needs to be heard).
  2. Use a mantra when you want to bring your mind back–I used, “I am safe, I am loved” and I would try to repeat it 10 times before the chatter started again. I am safe as I breathe in and I am loved as I breath out.
  3. As you get used to breathing, use a breathing guide to keep you centered…I like the following 9 guides, they keep me centered on my big picture goals and what I want to attract into my life in terms of health, abundance, and relationships.

For health, I repeat:

  • Breath in life, breath out toxins
  • Breath in energy, breath out sluggishness
  • Breath in health, breath out sickness

For abundance, I repeat:

  • Breath in light, breath out dark
  • Breath in harmony, breath out disharmony
  • Breath in success, breath out failure

For relationships, I repeat:

  • Breath in abundance, breath out scarcity
  • Breath in love, breath out angst
  • Breath in peace, breath out chaos

Try repeating one, two or three of these as you meditate and start with a count of 10, I guarantee you will be surprised at how hard it is to get to 10 before your mind wanders, just acknowledge the wandering and start counting at one again. Do this enough times and you will get to 10. ONce you get to 10, add another phrase. It can be one of the ones I have shared above, or one that you make up. Just remember, breath in/breath out–breath in/breath out–breath in/breath out. And watch your manifestations go into overdrive.

I will admit it did not happen overnight, but letting your mind wander is how you learn how to eventually quiet your mind. The chatter is not bad, just letting you know that you need to let it run its course and then you will be ready for the powers of meditation to take hold.

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Zulmara Maria

Addicted to Meditation

Inspiring Your Divinity

 

How do you get addicted to meditation?

You start meditating everyday and soon you will find yourself craving that time to go inside and be silent.

Today starts the FREE 21 day meditation from Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey. I have signed up and I am looking forward to it. I have found meditation to be almost addictive to me and I am craving time to go within. However, there was time I could not meditate because my mind was too wired and going at such a fast pace, I did not know how to quiet my mind, so meditating was not for me. Then I started doing Leela on the Wii and it is fantastic. Now I crave meditations and I totally look forward to my meditation time. I am finding that I need that time alone, to go inside and to get still and I have noticed my flow and my energy. I am vibrating my energy and flow all day long.

So give this free 21 meditation a try, you might find that it is just what your Divine Self ordered!!!

Abrazos Subscribe

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Zulmara Maria

ABRAZOS From that Little Voice in Your Head

Zulmara Maria Abrazos from your Divine Self

A Daily Hug to Start Your Day with a SMILE!!!

You know that little voice in your head that talks to you daily and constantly? That little voice that gives you advice? Puts a smile on your face? And lets you know just how AWESOME you are?

Well, how would you like to receive a positive affirmation from that little voice in your head daily in your email as a virtual ABRAZO?? An ABRAZO that will make you feel good, put a smile on your face and a bounce in your step? An ABRAZO that is FREE, but can have the same impact as wearing a new pair of shoes? A cute top? Or a breezy outfit?

Now they are here, those wonderful little ABRAZOS and they are ready for you to subscribe to, so do yourself a favor and get a fun pick-me-up in your daily email, letting you know that you are AWESOMENESS itself, that you are SAFE, that you are LOVED, and that you ROCK this world.

Bask in your divinity and DISFRUTA!!!

Here a few samples to make you SMILE!!!

  • Go out, give it a whirl, dance life’s dance…the rewards will exceed your expectations!!!
Un abrazo,
Your Divine Self
  • Dance life’s dance, sing life’s song, whisper life’s miracles…You will be AMAZED…
Un abrazo,
Your Divine Self

 

  • Seek and ye shall find, Ask and it is given, I am at your service.
Un abrazo,
Your Divine Self
  • Remember, it is impossible to fail, I got your back.
Un abrazo,
Your Divine Self
  • Who are you going to touch with your life’s magic today?
Un abrazo,
Your Divine Self
 
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Daily Abrazos from Your Divine Self

Zulmara Maria Abrazos from your Divine Self

 

How would you like to receive a Daily Abrazo? A Daily Hug? From your Divine Self? That little voice in your head that let’s you know just how DIVINELY AWESOME you are!!!

These ABRAZOS will lift your spirit, make you smile, and let you know that you are loved, awesome, and divinely AWESOME.

Do yourself a favor and sign up for these daily ABRAZOS today and start your day with a smile on your face and a spring in your step.

Here are a weeks worth of ABRAZOS to keep you smiling all day:

  1. Your divine self knows, just ask the answer awaits.
    Un abrazo,
    Your Divine Self
  2. Dip in your toes, it is not too cold, it is not too hot, it is just perfect (since I am always by your side)
    Un abrazo,
    Your Divine Self
  3. Know your worth, give yourself a pat on the back, you are Divine…
    Un abrazo,
    Your Divine Self
  4. You have risen from the ashes, you have arrived, you are divine, embrace it.
    Un abrazo,
    Your Divine Self
  5. You are programmed, inclined, and wired to succeed, YOU CANNOT FAIL…now go out there and reclaim your divinity…
    Un abrazo,
    Your Divine Self

Now go sign up for your ABRAZOS and have a GREATLY DIVINE DAY!!!

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Zulmara Maria

 Abrazos Subscribe

Almost White: Forced Confessions of a Latino in Hollywood

Let’s Buy Rick and Gina Linn a Cup of Coffee or a Drink

In this critically acclaimed comedic memoir, Rick Najera tells the story of being a Latino in Hollywood and what it takes to be Latino, a hyphenated American, and to make it in Hollywood. With humor, with candor, and with an honesty that comes from those who have stared death in the eye and beaten it, Rick’s book is a raw look at growing up Almost White, not quite brown, and not black in America. He recalls his stories, his childhood, his ancestors, and his experiences growing up in La Mesa, California. He recalls what is expected of you in terms of compromises, selling your soul, holding onto your soul, and in the end, being who you are.

Rick shares with us how to make it in Hollywood as a Latino and still keep your Latinidad, still keep your spirit, still make your grandfather proud. This book is a must read for all Latinos searching for identity, searching for who they are, and wondering about how to make a difference. In these pages, Rick lets us see how he chose to make a difference, stand up for himself, and be the person his parents and grandparents could be fiercely proud of.

This now AWESOME book is being made into a stage production by Gina Linn Espinoza. As the founder and UpLatino, she is dedicated to bringing the Latino/a story to life and weaving them into mainstream American life. She wants others to know and understand what it means to be Latino in the United States today. She wants to tell our stories for other Latinos/as to see themselves on stage and on the big screen and for mainstream America to see who we are and understand our history as well.

When Gina Linn asked Rick to be her “first” project and to take this event nationwide, he replied,  “…when a Latina asks you to do something, you better do it.”

Now, let’s do this and help Gina Linn and Rick raise the funds they need for this AWESOME opportunity. They open Friday, April 11, 2014 at CASA 101. Here is their Indiegogo Campaign link for a donation. They are asking that we buy them a cup or coffee or a drink!!!

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Powerful Books to Feed Your Soul, Nourish Your Spirit, and Inspire Your Heartsong: Sylvia Mendoza

Reclaiming Your Divinity

 

Latina Women: 150 Vidas of Passion, Strength, and Success

by Sylvia Mendoza

Reclaiming Your Divinity Book Awards

Written by Latinas for Everyone

Opening Line: The book of Latina Women celebrates stories of the spirit and the resiliency of Latinas who contributions have shaped history.

Quote: Though the term Latina is relatively new, the spirit that goes with it carries an important legacy. For centuries, Latina women have inspired us beyond words. Their actions have sparked great change and their spirit has made its mark on our contemporary world (p. Introduction  Mendoza)

Review: This book is a testament to the power, strength, and diversity of Latinas who have made a difference in the world, who have lived their purpose, who have lived their dreams. Many of them were trailblazers in their fields and braved a path for those of us who were to come behind. These women make us proud to be Latinas, to be women, to be taking our place in our world.

Their stories will make you jump for joy and laugh out loud (lol), they will bring tears to your eyes and they will h

Reflective Questions:

  1. The book is divided into 11 chapters that cover up the multitude of different ways we can contribute to society. Where do you place yourself?
  2. Read over the taglines in the chapter headings, which ones resonate with your regardless of the professional association?
  3. How would you define the “spirit of Latinas?” What is unique about Latinas?
  4. Many who read this book walk away feeling, “Wow, I am so proud to be a Latina!” Did you walk away with that feeling? Why?
  5. Of the 150 Latinas in the book, who impressed you the most? Who surprised you the most?
  6. If you could have dinner with one of the Latinas in this book, who would you choose and why? What are the three questions you’d like to ask them over dinner?
  7. Is there a young Latina you would like to gift this book to? If so, who and why?
  8. How did the Latinas in this book speak to your heart? Which ones inspired you? Which ones do you see as role models? Which ones do you look up to?
  9. Look over the extended bibliography at the end of the book and make a note of how many Latinas you recognize and how many of their works you are familiar with. Who would you add to the list?

About the Author: Sylvia Mendoza

Sylvia Mendoza is an advocate for literacy. She promotes the power of the written word through her writing, editing and speaking projects. As a journalist, Sylvia Mendoza is the author of The Book of Latina Women: 150 Vidas (Lives) of Passion, Strength and Success, an important historic perspective on Latino women who have made significant contributions in the arts, politics, science, entertainment, sports, education, and history. The book was selected for the 2007 California Collection for High Schools by the California Readers Association.

As a freelance writer, Sylvia served as parenting columnist for Siempre Mujer magazine. Articles have appeared in Hispanic Outlook, Uptown, OurCity San Diego, Los Angeles Times, San Diego Union-Tribune, Writers’ Journal, San Diego Writers’ Monthly, Decor & Style, Living Better, Kids’ Wall Street News, and Hispanic. Awards for Journalistic Excellence include First Place for Non-Daily Reporting & Writing/Multicultural Stories from the Society of Professional Journalists and First Place, Non-fiction from National Federation of Press Women for The Book of Latina Women.

Listen to the Podcast HERE.
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Zulmara Maria

Powerful Books to Feed Your Soul, Nourish Your Spirit, and Inspire Your Heartsong: Francesca Escoto

Reclaiming Your Divinity

 

 Divorce Your Drama: Courage to Make the Tough Choice That are Worth Every Tear by Francesca Escoto

Powerful Books to Feed Your Soul, Nourish Your Spirit, and Inspire Your Heartsong:

Reclaiming Your Divinity Book Awards

Written by Latinas for Everyone

Opening Line: I was born in the Dominican Republic in 1976.

Quote: This book is really about my own journey to peel the layers of all I learned at the dining table, and an attempt to keep the good stuff to create a foundation on which I can re-learn how to nurture intimate, family relationships.

I pray that this book will help you find meaningful ways to celebrate the past, your family of origin and the drama, without feeling stuck. I pray that this book will give you permission to create new traditions, new relationships, and healthy families. I pray that you will find creative ways to live today, with freedom (p. 11).

Review:

Francesca Escoto-Zavala has written a remarkable book, Divorce from the Drama to help us get the drama out of our lives and start living the life we were meant to live, have dreamed of living, know is ours to engage in. she opens with what she has learned from her own family traditions and ways of growing up, and how that has influenced the person she has become.

She has us start understanding the different prototypes of characters who play a role in our lives and how we respond to these characters. She appropriately calls them the noverleras, the cast of characters in our own novellas. They are the people who cross our path with their own need for drama and, can succeed at sucking us into their drama in a never ending cycle of stress and distress.  Especially if we are unaware of how their way of being, interacts with our own need for drama and perpetrates and maintains that level of drama.

However, divorcing the drama does not begin and end with understanding others and their need for drama in our lives and theirs, but it begins with knowing and understanding ourselves and making a conscious decision to no longer feed the drama, no longer live on the adrenaline of stress, and to no longer blame others for all that is happening in our lives.  It is about owning our stuff and not letting it own us, it is about knowing who we are and what we are about, so that we can live the message, have the life, pursue the dream of what we want and who we are.

There are no accidents and “things” do not happen to us in a vacuum. If you find your life spinning out of control, not satisfying, needing something more, maybe it is time to divorce the drama, and get on with living the life you were meant to live.

Reflective Questions:

  1. When you read the title, what do you think the book will be about?
  2. Did the book title live up to your expectations?Francesca Escoto
  3. In ACT 2, the author suggests you face the drama and she describes different ways of being. Who did you identify with? Why? Who else did you identify in the noveleras?
  4. Have you downloaded the Divorce Your Drama Workbook, if so, what did you think of the exercises? If not, please go download the book and do some of the exercises, they are very helpful. http://francescaescoto.com/dramaworkbook/
  5. Do you own your stuff or does your stuff own you?
  6. Do you have drama to divorce? How are you planning on divorcing your drama?
  7. Have you understood your purpose? Are you living your passion?
  8. What is your message? How can you better live your message?
  9. Who do you need to divorce in order to make your dreams come true?

About the Author: Francesca Escoto

Francesca Escoto is an author, motivational speaker, coach, and radio host. Her first book, “Divorce Your Own Drama: Courage To Make The Tough Choices That Are Worth Every Tear”, was born out of a desire to encourage and empower mujeres to live courageously, embracing the beauty of womanhood and the power of personal choice. This book was the result of having to make many personal sacrifices in order to break out of dysfunctional family patterns.

Francesca is an avid writer (and speaker) on topics of social change, and her work can be accessed on this website via her blog. In addition, she writes for YourTango.com, a site dedicated to helping individuals get the professional help they need to nurture their marriages and relationships. Her blog articles have been featured by YourTango, Huffington Post, and Fox News Magazine, among others.

Francesca is currently working on a series of eBooks and workshops, “Nuts and Bolts for Latina Start-Ups”, which will aide entrepreneurs in the growth of their businesses. Her year-round Innovators Institute is based on this series.

Listen to the Podcast HERE.
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Zulmara Maria

 

 

 

 

 

Powerful Books to Feed Your Soul, Nourish Your Spirit, and Inspire Your Heartsong: Michelle Herrera Mulligan

Reclaiming Your Divinity

 

Borderline Personalities: A New Generation of Latinas Dish on Sex, Sass, and Cultural Shifting

Edited by Michelle Herrera Mulligan &

Robyn Moreno

Reclaiming Your Divinity Book Awards

Written by Latinas for Everyone

Opening Line: On day, about a year ago, my mother said to me, “You are not a Latina.”

Quote: We realized that ultimately, it is up to us to decide that we are Latina, to individually determine what the term means. We grappled with the implications of this on our greater culture, and argued about the word’s ability to entirely define us. At the end of this process, we realized that no matter how loaded, conflicted, and difficult the term may be, we are Latinas. Through heritage and by choice.

Review:

In this remarkable collection of 20 short narratives, the authors share their  stories of finding their voice, their power, their Latinidad. These fun and sassy Latinas tell us what it is like to not be Latina enough, to not fit into their new countries, to not be accepted in their old countries. The stories are divided into 4 defining transitions in a woman’s life 1) growing up or being a child, 2) finding love, 3) finding your identity, and 4) choosing your calling and your purpose.

These powerful Latinas discuss many different aspects of live and living and being the person you are meant to be. In these stories, you will laugh, cry, shed happy tears, and become one with these powerful Latinas who share their lives and struggles, as they seek to find their identity and define their Latinidad.

Reflective Questions:

  1. How do you define Latinas?
  2. Do you identify as a Latina? Why or why not?
  3. What are the characteristics that you identify with being Latina?Mulligan Quote
  4. In the quote, it says we are Latina by choice, do you agree? Why or why not?
  5. Latina is not a race, an ethnic group, or a cultural group, so what is it? Are you Latina enough?
  6. Why are Latinas becoming so powerful?
  7. What is it that brings us together as Latinas? Do you identify or not?
  8. There are many ways to identify as Latina, what is your claim to Latina fame?
  9. How are you Reclaiming Your Divinity and stepping into the Divine space your ancestors have prepared for you?

About the Author: Michelle Herrera Mulligan

Michelle Herrera Mulligan is the editor of Cosmopolitan for Latinas, the premiere women’s lifestyle publication targeted at English-speaking Latina women.

Prior to Cosmopolitan for Latinas, Herrera Mulligan served as managing editor of LasFabulosas.com, an internationally syndicated website which celebrates Latina success. Her articles and reporting have appeared in more than 20 magazines, including Time, Glamour, and Martha Stewart’s Whole Living. She was a founding editor of Latina magazine.

A prolific author and journalist for more than 10 years, Herrera Mulligan has worked to capture the surging Latina voice in the United States. She co-edited and contributed to Border-Line Personalities, a groundbreaking collection of essays on culture clash and coming-of-age as a Latin woman in America. The book was course-adopted at universities throughout the country, including Yale and Florida International University, and won an Outstanding Contribution to Hispanic Studies Award in 2006. In 2007, Herrera Mulligan edited Juicy Mangos, the first-ever literary collection of Latina erotica in English, which Pulitzer Prize-winning author Oscar Hijuelos called, “a collection of stories that offer the reader some real insights on what being a feeling and thinking Latina in today’s world is all about.”

She is a board member of the Latino Rebel Foundation and actively partners with Las Comadres de las Americas, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, among many other dynamic organizations. She is a frequent guest and contributor of the Council of Urban Professionals, and was invited to join a special meeting of journalists and presidential advisors at the White House this past spring.

This past year, she was nominated as a “revolucionaria” by the Social Revolution at the South by Southwest festival, and was named a 2013 “Woman of Distinction” by the Manhattan Times and Bronx Free Press.

About the Author: Robyn Moreno

Robyn Moreno is a Latina lifestyle expert, Emmy-nominated TV host, author, and blogger at PocketsofPretty.com, a weekly newsletter and blog that help women easily infuse beauty and joy into everyday life.

As a sought-after lifestyle expert, Robyn appears regularly on The Today Show, Weekend Today, Extra, CBS Early Morning ShowThe Steve Harvey Show, Fox and Friends, CNBC, and Better TV, among other national and local outlets. She currently hosts her own show, Practically Posh, on the I Heart Radio Talk network.

Robyn believes that personal style can be easily achieved in all areas of life, regardless of budget—a philosophy she touted in her popular book, Practically Posh: The Smart Girl’s Guide to a Glam Life (HarperCollins, 2008) and one she shared with customers in the NYC vintage store she co-founded: A Little Wicked.

Robyn crosses all media platforms to dispense her honest and fun advice.  She was nominated for an Emmy as the host of Plum Daily Hamptons, a daily lifestyle show on the Plum Network, and has written fashion, travel, and lifestyle articles for Elle, InStyle, Glamour, Cosmo for Latinas, Latina, Woman’s Day, Manhattan, Beach, The New York Daily News, Redbook.com, Jetsetter.com, TheLatinKitchen.com, and About.com.

A proud Latina of Mexican-American heritage, Robyn has co-written and co-edited two Latino-centric books: Suave: The Latin Male (Rizzoli, 2001), a fashion book about Latino style icons; and Border-line Personalities: A New Generation of Latinas Dish on Sex, Sass, and Cultural Shifting (HarperCollins, 2004), an honest and irreverent anthology about life as a modern Latina.

A native Texan and certified yoga teacher, Robyn spends her time between East Hampton, New York and New York City with her daughter and hubby.

Listen to the Podcast HERE.
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Zulmara Maria

Powerful Books to Feed Your Soul, Nourish Your Spirit, and Inspire Your Heartsong: Lucky Chica

Reclaiming Your Divinity

 

 Lucky Chica by Berta Platas

Reclaiming Your Divinity Book Awards

Written by Latinas for Everyone

Opening Line: Rosie Caballero rushed up the stairs of her apartment building, her heels echoing against the worn concrete risers, a tattered dog leash loose at her side.

Quote: The perfect place to start a business, a family, and a new life in America. It has worked for her grandparents and their children, who had come in the mid-sixties and had become Americans as soon as possible, although they’d never let Rosie or her cousin Cheeto forget they were from Cuba (p. 2).

Review: Many of us dream of winning the lottery one day. Just imagine how different our lives would be with an influx of millions and millions of dollars. It is wild fantasy of quitting jobs, buying fancy cars, getting huge houses, and traveling the world in our yachts. In this fantastical tale, Rosie Caballero, who has lost her parents in a tragic car accident and is stuck in a dead end job, wins the millions. As an overnight millionaire, she has a lot to learn about gaining a fortune overnight, as do  her grandmother and her cousin, who she shares the winnings with equally.

Berta Platas has done her research on this one and knows how different people react to winning the millions and all of a sudden having money. All three of our main characters learn a lot about themselves, the world in which they live, and who to trust and who not to trust. Their lives change overnight as they are thrust into the limelight and become the center of attention. In the unexpected ending, Berta really does give us a lesson in how to live happily ever after and that money truly does not buy happiness.

Reflective Questions:

  1. What is the first thing you would do if you won the lottery?
  2. Who would you share your winnings with?
  3. How would you be a socially conscious millionaire?Lucky Chica
  4. How would you ensure that you are the exception to the rule and not the rule about losing your money?
  5. Money does not buy happiness, but it can make life a lot easier, who would you help? What causes would you support?
  6. If you had millions, what foundation would set up? To what end? Who would benefit? Why this cause?
  7. Socially conscious millionaires think of paying it forward, paying back, and supporting. Who would you payback for what they have done for you? How would you pay it forward to those who will come after you? What causes are near and dear to your heart that you would support?
  8. What did you learn from Rosie, her cousin, and her grandmother about how different people handle coming into millions?
  9. How would you ensure that winning millions did not change the essence of who you are?

About the Author: Berta Platas

Berta Platas author of Lucky Chica, What Stays in Vegas, Cinderella Lopez, Friday Night Chicas and more. Born in Havana, Cuba. Her paternal grandparents emigrated there from Galicia, in Spain. She has four kids, three-fourths of them boys. Her youngest is the only girl.

Berta lived in Miami, Pittsburgh, New York, Charlotte and Atlanta, in that order. She currently lives in Atlanta, Georgia. In addition to writing she still works in marketing.

Berta Platas loves martinis; Stolis, straight up, one olive.

Listen to the Podcast HERE.
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Zulmara Maria

 

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