Author Archive

Happy Father’s Day   Leave a comment

What better gift can daughters give their dad than a book about the SPY sisters and their Father?

Hot off the press …

Mystery - Lost Treasure: Egypt

Every little action has a consequence   Leave a comment

When I was younger, I aggressively pursued my career … believing that the things I did (and the money I brought home) would make a significant difference to the world and my family.

My children up until this day, still have difficulty understanding what I did as an accountant. They’re not even interested.

It is not from the lack of explanations, trust me.

Yet, from the moment I decided to start writing, they have taken an active interest in my creative thought process from wanting to understand the story, giving their opinions on my book covers to actively proclaiming to the whole wide world their mom is an author (and no, I’ve never let them read my books. They need to grow up first!)

I never got that kind of enthusiasm when I was working as an accountant.

And now, my eldest has overcome her fear of writing and decided she likes to come up with stories too. She wrote one for her teachers as a Christmas present. My youngest sits in my lap and asks me to read what I wrote for her that day. She questions the main idea of the story and actually makes an awesome editor (surprisingly for a seven year old – Maybe she sees things so much clearer than this jaded old soul).

Definitely not what I was expecting when I first embarked on my writing adventure. So now, I have to write something for them too …

Who knows what lies beyond the horizon … but at least we’re doing it together ❤

The Unexpected Intersection Between Motherhood and Womanhood   Leave a comment

“Motherhood brings as much joy as ever, but it still brings boredom, exhaustion, and sorrow, too.  Nothing else ever will make you as happy or as sad, as proud or as tired, for nothing is quite as hard as helping a person develop his own individuality, especially while you struggle to keep your own ~ Marguerite Kelly and Elia Parsons”

It is never easy … balancing between:

  • the family and self
  • career and home
  • the partner and the kids
  • time and money

And yet, despite it all … we should never give up.

Smile even when your heart is breaking   Leave a comment

My best friend’s child is now in the hospital.

As a mother, the hardest thing for us to do is stand by our children’s side and smile lovingly when they look at us in pain and fear …. while still pretending that everything is going to be alright … Because our kids need that from us – our reassurance, our strength, our love – even when we know the reassurances might be a lie and it is going to hurt, that the price might be too high even for us to bear …

No parent should have to bury their child – anonymous

We are all praying for them. Help me say a prayer for them too.

Posted October 10, 2013 by Kathryn Michaels in Crazy For Milk

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When Being The Breadwinner Single Mom Isn’t Enough to Pay the Bills   Leave a comment

Mark Twain once said, “The lack of money is the root of all evil.”

There is a hidden unvoiced fear in every stay-at-home-moms’ heart – the ability to provide for her family if she ended up alone.  After years of being out of the job market, she would have her own set of challenges when seeking employment again.  So, I decided to talk about the financial challenges a single mom has to face being the breadwinner for her family in my latest book, Sweet On Me.

When the money isn’t enough and the bills are piling up, the alternatives may seem limited but there are other options:

  • Taking a pay cut in the beginning. She may have been out of the market for several years and re-entry at the same level of salary may not be possible. Working for less would help make getting a job easier. Some organizations even offer “returnship” programs which pay little or nothing but participants stand a higher opportunity of landing full-time positions.
  • Opting for different job roles or positions which may vary significantly from what she may be used to but have a higher likelihood of being obtained. Even if it is significantly out of her comfort zone, it still pays for the bills at the end of the day.
  • Going back to school in order to make herself more marketable, when her existing qualifications are insufficient in the current environment.
  • Not being afraid to seek help from friends and family. They may not have the means to help financially but they may be able to help with childcare or even a place to stay in times of need.

With a family to provide for, the single mom shouldn’t be forced to extremes from a lack of money … well at least, hopefully not like Ophelia in Sweet On Me 🙂

Guilt is my steadfast motherhood companion   1 comment

Since embracing motherhood years ago, guilt has been my steadfast companion. No matter how much I think I’ve found the perfect solution – guilt has never left me.

Armed with my education and experience, my climb up the corporate ladder was rewarding yet disturbing with guilt constantly whispering in my ear about the time I wasn’t spending with my kids, the concerts I had missed, the times I didn’t make it home to tuck them in bed … The times I spent screaming at them to hurry in the mornings because I was late for a meeting, the weekends spent at the laptop instead of outside in the sun with them because I had a deadline to meet.

Sacrifice! I told myself. Career can take a back seat, I told myself. Stay at home, make them your priority, you don’t need to have it all. They need you. Money isn’t everything.

And now, after years of being home with them, I find myself a shadow of the independent woman I once was, dependent on my partner to support the family. Guilty because I don’t contribute financially to the family, guilty because I wasted all the years I invested in my education and my career, trying to be the best I could be …

Now guilt haunts me as I ask the children to study hard and do their best … What kind of example are you setting for your children? It asks me.

The choices have never been easy.

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Losing Top Talent Because Of An Unfriendly Work Environment   Leave a comment

Women account for over half of the management, professional and related occupations in the United States and yet, despite their own preferences and the investments they have made in their education and career, when the new baby arrives, only 64.2% of new mothers are likely to still be working within the first six years. Even though corporate figures such as Sheryl Sandberg strive to inspire working women to “lean-in” and pursue their careers, many organizations continue to find themselves in danger of losing their top talent as women choose to opt-out and leave their professional life altogether.

So, how can organizations retain top talent by cultivating a friendly work environment?
– Introduce flexible work hours. Empower her to choose where and when she spends her hours working as long as deliverables are met.
– Provide the infrastructure necessary to make it possible for new parents to work remotely – a laptop, access to the organization’s systems through the VPN (Virtual Private Network), and the ability to hold meetings via video or tele-conferencing.
– Make it easier for her to be in the office. Provide the facilities for her to express and store her milk safely so she can continue to nurse her child in the long run.
– Foster support groups for new parents within the organisation. Assign mentors through these support groups which can help the new parents adjust to the new phase of their lives.
– Ensure that corporate policies are family friendly through the advocacy of flexible work hours, granting parents the ability to use sick leave to care for children, paid maternity leave or even access to child-care benefits.
– Promoting solid opportunities for professional advancement and raises to make it worth their while (both as individuals and for their families) to continue working with the organization.

…Read more

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