Inspiration & Expert Advice on What Matters Most

Archive for 2019|Yearly archive page

Finding Hope & Solace at the Gym

In Blogging, Health, Lifestyle, Relationships, Spirituality, wellness on December 9, 2019 at 10:13

Yesterday I went to the gym after almost two years and a half since the last time I worked out. Yes, I did one 7-minute workout one day this summer, but I am afraid that doesn’t count for personal statistics purposes.

I joined with an online offer two weeks ago without ever visiting the place. I got there early, with the intention to get my barcode keychain, tour the club and join a yoga class.

As much as I tried, I couldn’t get myself excited. The smell of rubber, cleaning products and bleach from the pool and jacuzzi, the sound of the weights falling on the floor or racks, the inspiring, colorful wall-sized posters, and I can’t even remember the music. Nothing seemed to impress me.

I got in the room for the yoga class. It was cold and the mats were worn down. Students started to arrive. One lady smiled to me and asked me if it was my first time. I said yes. She said the teacher was amazing while she saved a spot for a friend.

Her friend arrived and they started talking. She introduced me to her friend while the class started filling up, still enough space to avoid feeling crowded. The teacher arrived, a beautiful French yogi with the respective accent and body.

The class was gentle as the music she played, exactly what I was able to handle after not working out in so long. I was relieved, happy and grateful.

My instant friends invited me to join them on Saturdays for Zumba and Yoga after. “I’ll do my best to join you”, I said. I asked her names before I left. “I am Esperanza and she is Consuelo”. “What a beautiful pair of names!” I said.

Esperanza (Hope) and Consuelo (Solace) made my day and I have been thinking of them ever since. I am sure they are what I was looking for on and off the mat.

I found hope and solace at the gym yesterday. May you find what you need today.

Namaste,

Laura

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In Our Thirties: Updates & Table of Contents

In Career, Finances, Health, Lifestyle, News, Quotes, Relationships, Spirituality on December 3, 2019 at 06:00

Hi friends,

How have you been?

Hope you are well. In my case, life keeps throwing curveballs, therefore here I am, doing what always makes me feel better: Reflecting and moving forward.

It’s been a while since the last book update. At the moment, we are in the final design/formatting phase. Before we are ready to launch, we will have at least three rounds of revisions, as recommended by our editor and project manager Amy Schleunes. With the holidays approaching, that means that most likely we will be launching Spring 2020.

The good news: You don’t need to wait to know what is in the book, as I am excited to share with you the full Table of Contents today:

CONTENTS

Preface

I. All the Way to Thirty

II. What Matters Most 

People 

“I wasn’t seeing how I looked—I was seeing how I felt.” 

Autumn Whitefield-Madrano on Beauty 

“Safety is not only possible, but it should be every thirty-something woman’s bottom line.” 

Jill Di Donato on Relationships 

Health 

“Everyone should experiment and learn, especially people in committed relationships.”

Dr. Sonjia on Sexual Health

“Fitness is a lifestyle, not just a look.”

Angelique Mills on Exercise and Longevity 

Spirit 

“Develop your ability to observe what’s happening in the moment.”

Warren Ogden on Spiritual Practice 

Career 

“You might have to re-evaluate your dreams.”

Cindy K. Goodman on Work-Life Balance 

Money 

“You need to know what you want and say no to everything else.”

Sandra Acosta on Personal Finance 

Living 

“We attract what we are or what we need to grow.”

Dashama on Positivity and Sustainability

III. Back to Basics 

IV. In Our Thirties: A Collection of Stories From Around the World 

Reading Group Guide

As you can see, In Our Thirties is a hybrid book, including:

An uplifting memoir about experiences so far, how priorities have changed, and how I am devoting this decade devoting it to what matters most now.   

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Guest Pieces written by Expert Contributors

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Compilation of more than 50 essays by friends from all around the world about being 30+.  

I would love to share a Sample Chapter soon.

What section would you like to read?

Tell me in the comments and I will post it. It’s your call!

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Always grateful for your support,

Laura

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Our son lives in a trilingual household—and we wouldn’t have it any other way

In Family, Lifestyle, motherhood, Relationships, travel on November 24, 2019 at 06:00
This article first appeared on Mother.ly. Grateful for the opportunity!

By Laura Sgroi

I always knew I would marry someone from another culture. Growing up in the Dominican Republic and then moving to Miami in my early 20s, I was curious and attracted by looks, accents and customs different than mine. I started studying English when I was six and added Italian classes at age 16, so marriage was still far from my mind, but little did I know that becoming trilingual would definitely mark my life and my family’s when the right time arrived.

My husband is Italian, born and raised in Palermo, Sicily. When we started dating, I was excited to learn that he had two of my non-negotiable musts in a guy: He could speak Spanish with my parents and he could dance merengue! Bingo!

Shortly after we got married ten years ago, we started daydreaming about our future mixed kids. We could almost see and hear our child running free and jumping for joy around us. Beyond any gender or looks, all I wanted was a healthy, happy and wholly baby.

Photo by the talented Eva Hart

Our son is now 2 years old. I gave birth with my Italian husband-become-doula reminding me to breathe and push in Spanish, my Puerto Rican ob-gyn coaching me with his Boricua accent, and three nurses—Indian, British, and Cuban—all cheering me on in their own version of English.

The moment my son was born, I just remember telling him: “I love you! I love you! I love you!” A hundred times. English was the language that I heard myself speaking to him.

Even before he was born, we were spontaneously and intentionally looking for ways to include our cultures in his life. We debated between names that had the same spelling and pronunciation in Spanish, English and Italian. We asked his grandmothers to bring children’s books from home so they could read to him in the only language they speak. We included multilingual toys in our baby shower registry and started talking and singing lullabies in my native Spanish and Daddy’s Italian when he was in the womb.

Even though we often sound like an episode of Dora the Explorer, I do my best to only speak Spanish at home, and his dad speaks Italian to him 100% of the time. He loves pasta, maduros, and pancakes.

When it was time to look for a preschool, diversity was our number one priority. We chose a Montessori school where he is now learning English as a third language and where we thoughtfully share traditional desserts from our homelands when we are invited to potlucks.

When he is out of school and we have run out of ideas, I admit that he watches and dances to merengue videos on YouTube, and loves them. As a result, our boy is now growing up trilingual in the United States, in a multicultural environment filled with all Latinx experiences.

His favorite! I don’t know why!

At the same time, I like to acknowledge and celebrate the fact that he was born in the United States. I make a point of having a traditional menu for Thanksgiving dinner even though none of us enjoys turkey that much.

We alternate our holiday travel between the Dominican Republic and Italy every year, and no matter where we are, he gets gifts from El Niño Jesús and Santa Claus on Christmas and then from La Befana (the old woman bearing gifts from Italian folklore) and Los Reyes Magos (the Three Magic Kings) on January 6th.

He made me feel proud when he came back from camp this summer holding a red, white and blue boat while jumping and screaming, “Our flag!” on the days leading up to the Fourth of July. And on the Fourth, he surprised us by lying on the grass to enjoy the fireworks, making us feel grateful for him and for this land that we call home.

Being a Latinx parent in the US today is a blessing and challenge at once. As an immigrant, I am aware of how fortunate I am to be able to raise my child with all the benefits this country offers, while still embracing my roots. Every day I challenge myself to keep growing, to become a better citizen and to be more visible so that we continue to break stereotypes and defy statistics.

Most of all, I want my little one to be free to express himself, to see the world and appreciate all the colors, rhythms and flavors beyond our own.

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La Feria del Libro de Miami

In En Español, News on November 22, 2019 at 06:00

Amigos en Miami,

Les tengo una buena noticia y una invitación. Me siento honrada de ser la anfitriona/presentadora del Salón 8503 de la Feria del Libro de Miami este domingo 24.


Los invito a disfrutar del programa:

11:45am a 12:15 pm: Lectura de los finalistas de Cuentomanía 2019


12.30pm a 1.45 pm: Autores, personajes y conflictos: José Ignacio Valenzuela, Fernanda Melchor y Pedro Cabiya


2 pm a 3.15 pm: Novelar lo histórico y lo cotidiano: Pedro Mairal, Karina Sainz Borgo y Raúl Tola

3.30 pm a 4.45 pm: Novedades de la Editorial Páginas de Espuma: Socorro Venegas, Juan Casamayor y Rodrigo Blanco Calderón.

5 pm a 6 pm: Voces poéticas de hoy: Johanny Vázquez Paz, Kelly Martínez Grandal, Ena Columbié y Legna Rodríguez Iglesias

¡Los esperamos!

Laura

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What We Do with Our Pain

In News on November 14, 2019 at 06:00

The last five weeks have been tough. In 40 days I lost my godmother, received a huge bill from the IRS, worked on an interesting, but extremely demanding project, had another expensive dentist appointment, my toddler was hospitalized, saw my dear friend suffer the loss of her wonderful husband, and just days ago, another close friend lost his mother, who I deeply admired and respected.

I learned from my friend Anthony Alcalde’s TED Talk, that every time something painful happens, we have an opportunity to do something with our pain and what we do is our choice. We can use it to create or to destroy.

And as my eyes still hurt from crying and my heart still aches while it takes all these hits and mourns all these losses, I find myself learning important life lessons without even trying. Learning how to be a better mom inspired by the words said by my cousin about how my godmother Madrina Belén chose to be a Mom above everything in her life. Learning how to live, work and love wholeheartedly inspired by the hundreds of beautiful tributes written remembering Moses Shumow, and learning the infinite dimensions of happiness and success that a professional woman can achieve when she works hard, something I celebrated about Heather Heaps since the day we met.

It’s incredible how some deaths teach us how to live. As I go through beautiful memories that I will cherish forever about these loved ones, I am grateful for the lessons learned and even more grateful to be able to share them with my family and friends, including you.

For them, one of my favorite songs:

Know you are loved

Rest in peace

Dream your sweet dreams

“Til your soul is released

Beloved Child

My heart is yours

Beloved Child

Go out and open doors

With your love

With your faith

With your compassion

With your grace

Oh, with your grace

Beloved Child

Go out, spread light to the world

Be strong,

be kind,

be brave

Love you all,

Laura

P.S. Please consider supporting The Shumow Family here and/or donating to the Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation [Ovarian Cancer Medical Oncology Fund] via www.thepmcf.ca.

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Back to…Coaching

In Career, coaching, News on August 26, 2019 at 12:21

I remember the excitement of going back to school. Summer breaks were too long for the girl who missed her friends, who would read her academic books before the academic year started, and who loved “saving” money buying used books around town.

In our thirties, even though we might not be in school nor campus anymore, even if you don’t have kids going back to school, and as many fun BBQ meals, trips, friends and family gatherings, patio and pool days as we can pack between Memorial Weekend and Labor Day, we can definitely crave the momentum of this time of the year. I miss my rituals, I miss my coachees, I miss You.

The end of the summer season marks a new beginning. Fall is approaching and it brings the last quarter of the year.

How would you like to end your year? What could support you to get there? Would you benefit from having a partner who would walk with you towards your personal and professional goals?

I would be honored to be that partner. I am a bilingual Certified Professional Coach by the University of Miami, an Accredited Program by the International Coach Federation.

Give coaching a try, please contact me to schedule a session now.

Looking forward to coaching you,

Laura

Photo Credit: Eva Hart took this great photo during her most recent Portrait Day. I am excited to share with you her upcoming dates. For more info and to book your mini session, please visit https://evahart.com/day/

In Our Thirties: Book Cover Unveiled

In Blogging, Career, Contributors, News, Quotes on August 18, 2019 at 03:12

“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it; Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it”.

-Goethe

On my thirtieth birthday, I set out to explore what this decade of life means and how best to celebrate it. I knew I was not the only one thinking about life differently at this age. I invited friends from all around the world to share their own experiences on life in our thirties. I set up a blog. I researched. I found expert contributors who could shed some light on the questions so many of us faced. I never imagined receiving such an overwhelmingly positive response. Though a book was not on anybody’s list, it emerged as part of this inspiring collective breakthrough.

After years of work, the book is finally here: In Our Thirties: Insights and Expert Advice for This Decade and Beyond. Out this Fall 2019 and my heart is racing while I am typing this.

Today, I am thrilled to share the book cover with you:

Please make it yours. As a contributor, as a reader, as a follower, this book is yours. Therefore, please feel free to share it with your family and friends through your feeds and stories, make it your profile picture, why not? Also, please continue to share your stories about life in your thirties with us, inspiration never ends.

If you are a journalist, blogger, or PR expert, please let me know if you would like to feature In Our Thirties. I am definitely available for interviews and willing to share excerpts. We have plenty of content available to post.

I can’t thank you enough for your encouragement and support.

Stay tuned for the launch this Fall 2019.

Always grateful,

Laura

P.S.: Please remember to follow us here on WordPress, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and invite your family and friends to join you so you can get invited to our book launch, receive giveaway alerts, and get inspiration and expert advice on what matters most in your thirties and beyond!

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Breaking News: Book Cover Reveal Tomorrow!

In Blogging, Career, coaching, Contributors, News on August 17, 2019 at 11:45

Hi!

How have you been?

How is your summer going?

For those of you who have kids, I bet you are getting them ready to go back to school! I wish you a great school year ahead!

Somewhere in the world, it’s my birthday already (Kiribati, here I go!)

As a thank you for your heartfelt support I would love to celebrate sharing with you the book cover of our upcoming book In Our Thirties coming out this Fall 2019! As I say when I coach vision-to-action board workshops, it’s time to put a picture on it. It’s time for a cover reveal!

Please check your emails and our social media profiles on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter tomorrow so you can be the first ones to see it and let me know your thoughts!

See you tomorrow!

Have a great day!

Your fan,

Laura

P.S.: Please remember to follow us here on WordPress and all social networks and invite your family and friends to join you so you can get invited to our book launch, receive giveaway alerts, and get inspiration and expert advice on what matters most in your thirties and beyond!

Photo by Leah Kelley

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World Breastfeeding Week

In Family, Health, Lifestyle, motherhood, News, wellness on August 5, 2019 at 09:00

World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated every year from August 1st to 7th to encourage breastfeeding and improve the health of babies around the world.

If you can do it, please do it. Try as hard as you can and for as long as you can. Or pump and feed your breastmilk to your baby. The benefits are infinite for both, you and your baby. 


I have been breastfeeding for 23 months and counting. A part of me wants to stop in the next few weeks, a part of me would do it for as long as my baby wants to. 

Along with the time and patience that it takes, some daily food staples that have helped me:

-Mother’s Milk ® -Traditional Medicinals Tea

-Oatmeal

-Almonds

-Avocados

-Milk

-Drinking water


If you can do it, please do it. If not, choose the best organic formula. Do your best for your baby and for yourself. Every little drop counts.


#WBW #NBM #LiveLoveLatch #normalizebreastfeeding

Unforgettable photos by the talented @isisantana.photography

P.S.: Have you read our post about fertility and my message of hope? And the one about what it takes to be a working mother? Check them out and please let us know your thoughts!

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Lectores en Santo Domingo: Esta Invitación es para Ustedes

In Beauty, En Español, Entrepreneurs, Health, Lifestyle, motherhood, News, wellness on July 19, 2019 at 09:00
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