Tag Archives: marriage

Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad!

Mom and Dad, dancing at a recent family gathering.
Mom and Dad, dancing at a recent family gathering.

When I remember the things I’m most grateful for, at the top of the list is my upbringing in a loving, stable home with two upstanding, involved parents. My four siblings and I were raised with solid, traditional values, along with a very clear sense of right versus wrong. And yes, a lot of fun in the form of family gatherings, events, friendships and the security of knowing our parents cared about our lives. My mom especially was happily involved in school activities, homework and extracurricular things like dance and piano lessons, sports (my brothers played baseball, football and wrestled) and ensuring that we were exposed not only to Eagles, Phillies, Flyers and Sixers games but also culture, history and conservative political activism.

Given the state of our current self-absorbed culture, I am eternally thankful for being the product of two people who were not only loving but generous with their time.

Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad….and thank you for everything!

 

 

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No, Beyonce and Hillary are not female role-models

LLL-B-tm copyOn Friday nights, I co-host Love Liberty and Lip Gloss for the Writestream Radio Network with two lovely women: Lisa Tarves, host of Just Believe on Sundays at 7 p.m. and her daughter Kristyn Fetterman. Intended to be a fun, lifestyle-oriented call-in program, each week on Love Liberty and Lip Gloss we bring on a guest to opine on a particular topic of interest to women — from dealing with difficult people to internet dating and everything in-between.

The show came into existence late last year when Lisa and I had a brainstorming session and decided we needed something in the programming line-up with more of a pop-culture vibe. Together we came up with the name to reflect the fact that we’re all American women and to denote three major areas of a woman’s life:

  • LOVE – relationships, spirituality
  • LIBERTY – travel, financial freedom, independence, career
  • LIP GLOSS – fashion, make-up, skincare, hairstyles, home decor

Understanding the importance of pop-culture in determining our elected leadership and ultimately the direction of the country, this would also be my opportunity to give voice to the oft-maligned or flat-out ignored female: the simultaneously feminine, pro-life, pro-American, traditional marriage-supporting, football-loving, Constitution-upholding, make-up wearing, career-oriented female.

Because according to our purposefully biased pop culture and media, these women simply do not exist.

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That’s one of the major reasons why a truly independent, successful, gorgeous, fit, healthy, glamorous, smart, accomplished, confident wife, mother-of-five and grandmother of two like Sarah Palin absolutely terrifies the overseers of our cultural rot and degradation. It’s also why they have relentlessly smeared, attacked, vilified and outright lied about her from the moment she burst onto the national political stage and posed the first credible threat to their carefully constructed female victimhood propaganda — and their false messiah.

Well that, and also because she actually chose life for her youngest offspring, fully aware of the physical and mental challenges he’d face, and the special added responsibilities that would define her role as mom while raising a child with Down syndrome. So in spite of the fact that Sarah Palin was everything pop culture and the media claimed women should be, do, and have, she committed an unpardonable sin. She actually walked her pro-life talk.

Also unpardonable? The fact that she’s been happily married to the same man — with whom she shares a loving, egalitarian partnership — her entire life. And that whenever she speaks of Todd, their marriage and their family, she absolutely glows. She doesn’t bitch, whine or complain about Todd’s many shortcomings, or about how men in general are stupid, mean, unenlightened and hopelessly inferior to women — all of whom, according to this mini mindset, are perfect creatures whose only human flaw is that they give way too much of themselves to others and always put themselves last.

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Look, I’m not suggesting that there aren’t women who need to be more assertive. Or who are truly victimized by immoral neanderthals who believe their only function is to cook, clean and birth children. But the reality is, most American women live pretty damned good lives (just ask any woman living under genuine oppression in a Muslim country). And there are plenty of charities and support systems in place to help those in need. Ironically, said support systems also include compassionate crisis-pregnancy centers which are also demonized by the self-proclaimed champions of all that is female. Heaven forbid these organizations guide a woman to give her baby up for adoption to a loving, childless couple instead of having an abortion.

Oh yes, they ostensibly believe in choice. It’s just that some choices are more equal than others.

But back to my point (I do have one, I promise).

Sarah Palin truly is a living embodiment of female empowerment. But if you’re a non-political junkie American woman, you wouldn’t know that unless you purposely took the time to cut through the pop culture BS and made a concerted effort to get the facts. Because in a female-dominated society enraptured by buzz words like “empowerment”, “self-care”, “independence” and “choice”, a real feminist like Palin is Enemy #1. Apparently, if you’re a woman, the  only acceptable way to actualize the aforementioned concepts is if you are pro-abortion, pro-immorality, pro-big government and pro-gay marriage.

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Which brings me to last night’s show. We interviewed a delightful guest, Barbara McNally, author of the book Unbridled. It’s a memoir of her journey from beleaguered housewife to liberated woman after suffering through a marriage to a man who didn’t value her contributions, including the fact that she’d sustained him on his road to success. I’ve seen similar stories play out with women I know personally, and I’m not denying the existence of bad men. I’m simply reacting to this notion that somehow ALL women are noble creatures while MOST men are slime. Having been through my share of disappointing relationships, it would be very easy to fall into that trap. But to be fair, Barbara brought up an excellent point in the interview — the person you become in a relationship determines its value. And that is something over which you have control; therefore, it’s not about blaming the other person but having the self-awareness to end the relationship if it’s the right thing to do.

Barbara herself was an absolute joy to interview — filled with wisdom, humor, inspiration, passion and a sense of morality. She admitted that having an affair was a “destructive” way to assert her independence and end her marriage and advised against other women committing similar wrongs. Through her charity the Mother Lover Fighter Sage Foundation, she also supports the wives of Wounded Warriors by treating them to a “Spa Day.” To listen to the interview, click below.

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It wasn’t until our guest effusively held up Hillary Clinton and Beyonce as role-models that I experienced visible disgust — mostly with myself for not challenging that erroneous idea, or at least offering my own suggestion (yep, Sarah Palin would’ve been a great one). Since LLL is supposed to be a Happy Hour/non-combative format, I remained clammed up. Ok, I’ll admit I also didn’t want to anger my co-hosts (one of whom had a sore throat and could barely speak), or put our guest on the spot.

But seriously, Hillary? Beyonce?

The former, who enabled by corrupt colleagues and a complicit media, has literally gotten away with the murder of four Americans in Benghazi and idolizes an avowed racist/eugenicist, Margaret Sanger? And Beyonce, whose pornographic performance at last year’s Super Bowl was anything but family-friendly?

Is self-objectification the new empowerment? Because if it is, count me out.

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Barbara expressed unbridled enthusiasm over Beyonce’s answer to the question: Who is the most important person in your life? (Hint: it wasn’t Jesus, her mother, her father, her husband, her child or any being — supernatural or human — outside of herself). In Beyonce’s world, SHE is the most important person in her life. I guess unabashed self-centeredness is the new philanthropy. As for me, I’d be curious to witness how Beyonce treats the little people — you know, waitresses, baggage handlers at the airport, manicurists, masseuses, make-up artists and countless others who aren’t nearly as important yet somehow manage to contribute well to the quality of her pampered, privileged life.

Anyway, when a friend called me out on my silence on the show last night, I figured the best way to make restitution was via my blog. Admittedly, it’s the coward’s way out because I can type out anything I want for as long as I want without interruption or push-back. However if anything, this experience has taught me to rethink my on-air actions next time I’m confronted with a similar situation. It’s an opportunity to gently, politely and effectively push back against pop culture indoctrination. I’m thinking I can do that in less than 1100+ words. ;)

Thoughts? Comments? Suggestions? I’m open to them!

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Writestream Tuesday with Lori Colombo-Dunham – UPDATED with Archive

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Today I had the pleasure of interviewing my good friend and client Lori Colombo-Dunham about her new book Reflections on the Ring: An Ordinary Woman’s Extraordinary Tale of How She Saved Her Marriage and Family. If you missed it live, click to listen. And be sure to visit her blog Reflections on the Ring, where you can purchase the book. It makes a wonderful gift for anyone seeking information and inspiration on how to renew their own marriage or life.

UPDATE: Missed it live? Click to listen.

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Author Lori Colombo-Dunham.

Florida Author’s Poignant Book An Inspiration for Married Couples Everywhere

New Book, Reflections on the Ring: An Ordinary Woman’s Extraordinary Tale of How She Saved Her Marriage and Family, chronicles a wife and mother’s testament to the power of faith in action and the triumph of traditional values.  

Author Lori Colombo-Dunham.
Author Lori Colombo-Dunham.

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Florida—In her first book, Reflections on the Ring: An Ordinary Woman’s Extraordinary Tale of How She Saved Her Marriage and Family, Lori Colombo-Dunham reveals how she transformed a shotgun wedding in a sterile courthouse mandated by an unplanned pregnancy into the marriage and family life of her dreams. Having always desired the trappings of an elegant church wedding and lavish reception, the author bravely discloses the “sins” of her past as a traditionally raised Catholic young woman and takes the reader on a simultaneously heartwarming, frustrating, and inspiring journey filled with broken dreams, financial turmoil, marital discord and parental responsibility. It’s a compelling personal story of triumph over one’s own self-directed aspirations and acceptance of God’s perfect — if at first seemingly ‘imperfect’ — plan.

“Most women harbor dreams of a fairytale wedding and marriage. And while some do achieve it all, they are in the minority. For most of us the reality of living out our daily lives with another person by our side demands compromise, cooperation and commitment. Yes, it takes two to make a marriage, but someone has to take the lead. Why not let that person be you?” Colombo- Dunham asks.

Filled with references and quotes from prominent authors and relationship experts Stormie Omartian, Dr. Laura Schlessinger and John Grey, Reflections on the Ring: An Ordinary Woman’s Extraordinary Tale of How She Saved Her Marriage and Family is already receiving rave reviews from a variety of critics one of whom, historical romance writer Katherine Bone states, “Reflections on the Ring is an adventure of discovery, love, and inner strength. Humorously written, readers won’t be able to put it down!”

One of Colombo Dunham’s passions is inspiring everyday women to stand up and fight for their marriages rather than live lives of quiet desperation or file for divorce. Aside from sharing her own story, she cites specific passages from the books that guided her into taking meaningful action. She ends each chapter with a bulleted summary of best practices and concludes the book with a rousing testament to the power of love, faith, family, friendship, fidelity and persistence.

To read a synopsis of Reflections on the Ring: An Ordinary Woman’s Extraordinary Tale of How She Saved Her Marriage and Family visitwww.reflectionsonthering.wordpress.com   (Paperback, 119 pages, $13.95). The book may be ordered online at http://www.lulu.com/shop/lori-colombo-dunham/reflections-on-the-ring-an-ordinary-womans-extraordinary-tale-of-how-she-saved-her-marriage-and-family/paperback/product-21309971.html.

 

 

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About the Author

Lori Colombo Dunham grew up in a small Midwestern town in Michigan, the youngest of five siblings in an Italian family that cherished old-fashioned traditions, high moral standards and timeless values — all of which still play an important role in the life of The Matriarch, her mother.

After earning a B.A. in Sign Language Studies (Deaf Culture) and a B.S. in Gerontology, Lori worked with the deaf elderly in Michigan before relocating to Florida where she met her husband-to-be. Lori’s role-models have always been her grandmother, mother, and father as readers will quickly discover within the pages of Reflections on the Ring. She currently lives in South Florida with her husband, David, and daughters, Gianna and Bianca.

About Daria DiGiovanni

Daria DiGiovanni is an author, ghost writer, editor, blogger and social media marketer who specializes in helping clients express their concepts creatively and effectively. The author of Water Signs: A Story of Love and Renewal (2008), she has edited and ghostwritten several books, manages two internet radio networks, Writestream and We Built That Network,  hosts two internet radio programs Writestream Tuesday and Inalienable Right, and blogs at DariaDiGiovanni.com and WeBuiltThatNetwork.com. Follow her on twitter@dariaanne.

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A Pastor’s Review of Reflections on the Ring

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Many thanks to the wonderful Reverend Bernie Lutchman for this thoughtful review of Reflections on the Ring:

Reflections on the Ring took a lot of soul-searching, courage and yes, faith to write. It was encouraging to me to see how Lori never stepped away from her traditional faith and turned it into something proactive that will impact her family for decades to come. I will encourage the reader to grasp the conundrum she faced when transitioning from her dream wedding to the nightmarish, almost mind-altering experience of getting married in a South Florida courthouse in front of a Judge! Her emotional conflicts and anxiety come over in the book as she tries to come to terms with marrying a man who bought her a Cubic Zirconia wedding ring! Here she was, with her 110 year old heirloom wedding ring from her great- grandmother, having recently given up a 2.5 carat engagement ring from a man she discovered she did not love, just to marry Dave in a cold impersonal courtroom. Could this get any more mind-boggling?

To her credit and here is where the minister in me warmed up to Lori, the person – she turned to the only Place she could find comfort and even peace. Even when things were darkest…. Even when bills were tough to pay…. Even when Dave was tough to love, she kept the Faith. What I loved about this “page-turner” is the various Scripture references therein, which are placed strategically along the narrative to tie into what was occurring at the time in Lori’s life! More impressive was her reliance on the writings from the wonderful prayer ministry of Stormie Omartian, with whom I am acquainted through my association (from 2006) with the Colorado-based National Day of Prayer Task Force. Stormie was once a speaker at one of our prayer summits up in the amazing Rocky Mountains, where praying to our Glorious God comes really easy (after one beholds the majestic mountains).

Here is a passage from Lori Columbo-Dunham’s book which I found very uplifting and beautiful. May it encourage you to pick it up and spend a couple hours reading it:
● When the unexpected happens, lead with your gut, follow your heart, trail with your head.
● Live by your conscience and take responsibility for your actions.
● Be conscious and respectful of his built-in psychological need to escape to his cave when warranted.

● Always be prepared for God’s destiny for you especially when it seems to contradict your own plans for your life. 

To read the entire post, visit Bernie’s excellent blog, The Write Stuff. Thank you for taking the time to read and review, Bernie!
 
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