16 year old Nikardye (PRONOUNCED NE KAR DEE YAY) Shockley, one of only two students who submitted an essay for the Fancy Girl's Prom Dress Giveaway Project face LIT up when we told her that veteran actress Vivica A. Fox was sponsoring her gown for her upcoming prom. A representative from Vivica's Foxy Brown Productions shipped two gowns, a dress, shoes and a box of cologne by Jo Malone. Events Specialist Cassandra L. Thomas created a beautiful GLAM GIFT BASKET for the occasion to prepare Nikardye for her special night. We knew it had to be a divine intervention the way things turned out. We started promoting the giveaway in December, seeking fifty students to give a prom gown to at no cost to them or their parents. The sole purpose of the essay was to see if the students would be willing to take the responsibility of responding to the essay question, writing it, and submitting it by the deadline date. Unfortunately, the other student's prom is tonight…the same day as the giveaway, so she opted out five days before the event. I came across many students who wanted a gown, but they didn't want to write the essay. One of my favorite quotes I use to recite while working for DeKalb DFCS was “People will show up for you to the degree of how you show up for yourself.” The moment these two students heard about the giveaway, I received their essay within 24 hours. It is so disappointing to know that there are students out there with this mentality. Some young people and adults needs to get away from the mentality of thinking that they are entitled, and that they are supposed to benefit from someone else’s hard work. NOTHING in this world is free. Although these dresses and gowns were at no cost to me, I had to put the work in to get them that included email blast, social media blast, text message blast, contacting hundreds of companies to donate to this worthy cause as well as taking the time out to drive and meet the donors to pick them up. These two students demonstrated responsibility, determination, and accountability. Nikardye showed up for herself, and this is the result. More pictures to come in the premiere launch issue of Fancy Girls Prom eMagazine in June.
NIKARDYE’s STORY: She and her baby sister are the children mentioned in this story http://www.georgianewsday.com/news/333859-police-teacher-lashante-holloway-shot-killed-by-ex-boyfriend-at-her-home.html
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Vivica A. Fox, Foxy Brown Productions
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In Need Atlanta, Sierra N. Hill
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Everyone Has A Story...what's yours?
One of the greatest challenges I've ever had to face in my life was being married to a crack addicted husband. Back then I loved that man with everything that was in me, and having that kind of hard love for him meant that I had to deal with him behaving irrationally, his lies, his stealing, his cheating and any other number of unacceptable behaviors and, on top of that, I was legally bound to him. I had to bear the hook for any damage he caused.
And as the end of yet another year was slowly approaching, I thought about what was going on in my life the previous 365 days, and the 365 days before that as well as all the previous 365 days before those. Even as I sat there and analyzed my situation I hadn't seen him in three days, because he was somewhere on another crack cocaine binge. God allowed me to see the constant pattern that I'd gotten myself into; I had been stuck in this situation now for six years. It took that thought pattern just for that moment to realize that I did not want to live with this problem for the rest of my days. And after six long years, coming to the decision to divorce my husband was the only choice I had as the non-addict in the marriage, because we had a child who needed a stable adult around. I see now that although I was there for my child when his father and I were together, I wasn't available. Everything was absolutely chaotic! I had lost complete focus on everything including the dreams I had for me and my child.
My husband used drugs compulsively, and as a result of choosing to stay in that relationship, I have endured a great deal amount of serious negative consequences. I lost everything, everything. Being married to someone who abuses drugs is one of the most frustrating, confusing, SOUL-SAPPING things that anyone can do, I wouldn't wish that on anyone. I knew my husband had this problem long before I married him, but I wanted my son to grow up with his father. And I thought I could save him. But I ended up needing someone to save me. I couldn't cure him, I couldn't control his addiction, and I damn sure couldn't save him. What the hell was I thinking?
HOT Off the Shelf!
Books by Cassandra L. Thomas
Available NOW at Amazon & Barnes and Noble Nook
A heartwarming family memoir remembering the love, laughter, struggles, triumphs, and tears shared in the comfort of their cozy bungalow at 221 Rockyford Road for forty-two years. And the person who laid the foundation, and kept it all together with prayers, discipline, wisdom and home cooked meals made with love...their beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, auntie, friend and neighbor, the late Vannie Pearl Smith whom they affectionately addressed as Mama.
An Original Screenplay Written by Cassandra L. Thomas
A Comedy/Drama Romance about a group of friends in Atlanta, Georgia who comes together and plans the biggest three day Old School Neighborhood Reunion after hearing about the projects where they grew up is being torn down. A long distance friend decides to sell her business in LA and move back south. However, after being gone for twenty-years, she’s afraid that a secret that she has held all those years will be revealed. Hearts will be mended, lives will be touched, and old flames will flare that will twist to a dramatic ending.
A 205 page memoir photo journal filled with colorful pictures and illustrations expressing a grandmother’s love for her precious granddaughter. Money from all sales of this book goes directly into an account for this author's Sugar-Sugar. Help us support her education now and in the future.
Even though one of his strangs wuz missin, Big Ben played dat guitar and dis time when he walked round de room, he came to me and stood staring at me so long; I got a lil shame faced wit eb-body lookin on and all. It made me feel like us had a connection wit one nother, but most of all it made me feel like I had a special place in his heart...
The anticipated sequel to A Wonderful Place. Thomas brings that same down home dialect style, and storytelling talent to BABY GAL as she introduces Honey and Willa Mae (Baby Gal), friends who have shared a special bond since childhood in the rural town of Culloden, Georgia. Honey, forced to grow up fast after the death of her mother, turns to a private life of promiscuous behavior. Baby Gal, who struggles to overcome the secret challenges she faces in her home. Only Honey knows the secrets that are kept behind Baby Gal's doors, but when her struggles become too much for her to bear mentally, Honey rushes to her friend side as the drama unfolds. They both eventually find themselves in a place where wisdom is offered, and their lives changed drastically for the better. Filled with juke joint laughter, heart wrenching moments, challenges, praises, forgiveness, love and healing. This story will have you missing the characters the very moment you turn the last page.
Baby Gal Book Trailer
You done reduced too much gal, ain't dey feedin you? Ma Nellie asked Baby Gal while packing her lip wit snuff. Lookin sickly and all, whut you doin to yoself, say chile? She asked as she brushed Baby Gal's uncombed nappy hair to de back, and then put'er cup up to her mouth to spit in. Sumbody need to run a comb through yo hair, look at cha," she tole Baby Gal. She opened up her pocketbook, and pulled a brown paper sack out of it. She opened de sack and pulled out a cone bread muffin dat she cooked befoe deys left, and put it up toward Baby Gal's mouth to bite. She didn't want it at furst, but Ma Nellie won't gon stop tryin. It's alrite chile, Ma Nellie tole Baby Gal, she finally took a big bite from it. Taste dat? Dats home baby, Cullo. Now you make haste and git yo mind rite so you can git on back there, you hea me? Now I know dat man hurt yo heart real bad, but sum time thangs jes don't go de way us want'em to go. You gotta trust dat de good Lawd knows whut he's doin, cause if he didn't he wouldn't hav sent dat man on his way from you. How you gon ever preciate de sunshine if it don't rain chile? She held Baby Gal's chin wit both hands, and looked her in de eye. You betta grab a broom and sweep dem troubles on way from hea and go on wit yo life, cause he gone. He don't want you no mo. Ain't want you in a long time, and you need to hea dat. De only way he could stand being wit cha is to beat you, cause he jes didn't want you no mo honey. Now I know dats a mighty mean thang to hea comin from Ole Ma Nellie, but dats jes de way it is. I's love you, and I want cha to come on home in a hurry you hea? Ma Nellie tole her, then she kissed Baby Gal's hands and got up to leave. De doctors tole Miss Tillie dat Baby Gal won't eat her suppa dat day, say she cried de whole nite.