Beauty Talk Illustrated Summer 2012

Page 1


In this issue »


New York Yankees

Juan & Sandra Pinol — Disciples of Christ

On Campus With


Glam Girls »» Lindsay Burnley »» LaCameya Roper »» Mallory Washington


Cool Way to Beat the Summer Heat





RICHARDS-SHEFFIELD Gospel Recording Artist, Entrepreneur and wife of retired MLB Gary Sheffield

National Veterans Wheelchair Games

BLAST from the Past

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 1




6 Team Pinol


New York Yankees Juan and Sandra Pinol, Disciples for Christ

17 Blast from the Past

God wants to do a new thing in our lives and in our hearts. The moment we allow Him, the chains from the past that bound us are broken.

Nativity Catholic School 8th Grade Girls Softball Team wins Championship

collegeglamgirlS 26

Lindsay Burnley, University of South Florida La Cameya Roper, Texas Wesleyan University Mallory Washington, University of Florida

encourage (on the cover)


20 DeLeon Richards-Sheffield


Gospel Recording Artist, Entrepreneur, and wife of retired Major League Baseball outfielder Gary Sheffield and Beauty Talk’s PRAISEANISTA™

29 TRIune FITnessSM

~ Ephesians 4:29 NKJV

One Cool Way to Beat the Summer Heat

30 Mission Possible

2 Summer Issue 2012

Photographed by Keith Major, New York City–Cover and Featured Article: DeLeon Richards-Sheffield • Hair and make-up by Elena George and stylist, Diandre Tristan.

Preparing for the 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games in 2013



NINE 2 FIVE Deirdre Joseph —Tampa Police Department

“Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.”








from the PUBLISHER


A Lifestyle of Today’s Christian Woman

love summertime! It is absolutely one of my favorite times of the year. It’s a time for renewal, reflections and rejuvenation – family vacations and reunions, picnics and cookouts. It’s a time to enjoy the outdoors and the beauty of God’s creation. Summer brings about a sense of liveliness; plants, trees and flowers in full bloom are all evidence of life that has transitioned from the cold, dark days of winter through a budding springtime. It’s amazing to watch the cycle of seasons changing like clockwork each year. I know of no one in the world - other than God - who can cause this to happen, not even the groundhog. Similar to these seasonal changes, we experience cycles of transition throughout our lives as well. Sometimes we are up, other times we are down; at times there are dark days in our life then there are sunny days. The book of Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 reminds us that there is a season for everything and a time for every matter under heaven . . . We launched Beauty Talk Illustrated magazine during “my spring cycle.” It was


one of the most rewarding times in my life - a sunshine kind of moment. As a continuously evolving publication, we are excited about yet another transition. Beauty Talk Illustrated has taken on a brand new look! Although the appearance has changed, our awesome message “to share God’s love with others” remains the same. We invite you to join us on this lovely journey to inspire and encourage people all over the world. We have already received many heartfelt comments from readers expressing fondness for the magazine and applauding the work of our wonderful production team. Our inspiration comes from the brave individuals who allow us to share their stories. If it were not for them, there would be no Beauty Talk Illustrated and for this we are extremely grateful. Take for instance Juan Pinol and his wife, Sandra. Pinol is a Chaplain for Major League Baseball’s New York Yankees and a minister of the Gospel. When we visited their training facility in Tampa, Florida, our radar was initially focused on the Pinols, but what we received that day was much

more than expected. We witnessed firsthand Pinol in action and, as seen on page 6, the manifestation of God’s work in the lives of young athletes. This month’s PRAISEANISTA™ and cover story is the very talented and beautiful DeLeon Richards-Sheffield. She is a Gospel recording artist, entrepreneur and wife of retired Major League Baseball outfielder, Gary Sheffield. Captured on page 20 is a glimpse of her amazing 30-year singing career and how she keeps it moving with her busy lifestyle. Rounding off our summer escapade is the National Veterans Wheelchair Games and our College GLAM Girls. I would also encourage you to check out “Blast from the Past” and “One Cool Way to Beat the Summer Heat” by two talented and anointed writers, Chantelle Cudger and Triune Fitness coach, Allison Smith.

Enjoy the summer fun!


The quality or aggregate of qualities in a person or thing that gives pleasure to the senses or pleasurably exalts the mind or spirit.


To deliver or express in speech and to convey information or communicate in any way.


To give an example or instance. To illustrate is to make clear by giving or by serving as an example or instance - to enlighten and show clearly. Be au t y Talk Illustrated 3



EDITORIAL ASSISTANTS Lisa Landers Janelle McGregor


Michele Miles

We would love to hear from you. Any comments

LaTia Wright

and suggestions are always welcome. Your thoughts and input are always appreciated. For


general inquiries or to submit a letter to the

Allison Smith, US Army Retired

Publisher mail letters to FaithWalk Publications or

Jeanene LeSure

send an email to

Chantelle Cudger You are welcome to visit our website at


Lindsay Burnley LaCameya Roper


Mallory Washington

Beauty Talk Illustrated is a quarterly publication. You may request a media kit


by contacting a representative at

Stephanie Jackson


Contact the Writer

Jimi Walker

Information is listed in the writer’s biographical

Adrienne Anderson

data following the article.

Oh Snap Studios

LAYOUT & DESIGN Fireleaf Design

Blast from the Past Models Angelique Powell and Lora Hopkins

P.O. Box 1168 Brandon, FL 33509 Telephone: (813) 784-3345

Beauty Talk Illustrated is a quarterly online digital Christian woman’s magazine, published by FaithWalk Publications, Inc. We have built a reputation on integrity and professionalism. Beauty Talk Illustrated makes every effort to ensure accuracy, but we cannot be held responsible for any consequences arising from omissions or errors. No portion of this publication may be published without written permission. Beauty Talk Illustrated, Copyright 2012, All Rights Reserved.

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Be au t y Talk Illustrated 5

inspire to influence • move •

guide by divine or supernatural

“Procura con diligencia presentarte a Dios aprobado, como obrero que no tiene de qué avergonzarse, que usa bien la palabra de verdad.” ~ 2 Timoteo 2:15 “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” ~ 2 Timothy 2:15 6 Summer Issue 2012



By Ida Walker

s Major League Baseball swings

Life in the Major League

into action, Beauty Talk Illus-

God gave them a platform to reach souls from a place that is typically reserved for the superstardom, whose need for a higher power is often dismissed. Many professional athletes are enthralled by the fame placed in their lives when they sign the “big contract and enter the major league.� Suddenly, they become idols revered by sports enthusiasts all over the world. Stadiums, sports bars, restaurants and family rooms are often transformed into sanctuaries on game day. These dedicated fans, cheering for their favorite team, make up the largest viewing audience of any entertainment event. The athletes seem to have it all: high-paying salaries, luxurious lifestyles, popularity and the glitz and glamour that comes with fame. Their life appears neatly wrapped and packaged with everything they could ever dream of having in this lifetime. So, what in the world more could they want in life?

trated caught up with Juan and Sandra Pinol for an exclusive

interview about life after baseball and their awesome mission to serve God. It is obvious that the former Cincinnati Reds shortstop is playing on a different team these days. The game plan remains the same, but the rules have changed. The goal is still to win, but the victory is now for Christ.

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 7


Most Victorious Players Helping to guide baseball players away from the “shadows” to MVP status is Juan Pinol. He is best described as a disciple-coach (disciple for Jesus Christ) or one who ministers the word of God to others. He is a Baseball Chaplain for the New York Yankees organization and has mentored numerous players since 1989. For Juan, Christian discipleship is important! It’s a ministry God has placed in his hands; so, he eagerly takes athletes under his wings to share the word of God and His love with each of them. Juan knows all too well the challenges of being a rookie player in the major league. In 1985, he was recruited by the Cincinnati Reds organization and made his way to the United States (US) from the Dominican Republic (DR). He played shortstop until an injury ended a promising baseball career. He left the league as a player, but continued as a mentor and disciple for Jesus Christ. Juan found new teams with Athletes in Action (AIA), Baseball Chapel and SCORE International. In 2000, he teamed up with AIA and joined SCORE in 2006 to introduce the Gospel and inspire men, women and children through the lives of Christian athletes. These organizations partner with major sports leagues including Major League Baseball (MLB), National Basketball Association (NBA), the National Football League (NFL), and the National Hockey League (NHL) to bring a positive alternative to athletes as they develop spiritually. Professional coaches and players around the world are not only proclaiming the Gospel to the poor and hurting but also to the athletes that seek guidance and purpose greater than sports. They are committed to leading them to a victorious relationship with Jesus Christ. MLB recruits heavily in Latin countries like the Dominican Republic and Panama. Playing professional baseball in the United States is a dream-come-true for these athletes. They are grateful for the opportunity to come to the US and play America’s favorite pastime! They welcome the challenge of adapting to a foreign culture, including the language barrier they must overcome. As a mentor, Juan provides guidance and support for these Spanishspeaking athletes; as a Chaplain, he conducts Baseball Chapel and personal times of prayer.

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As expressed by individuals who seek personal increases, the feeling of emptiness seems understandable, but “empty” to the affluent may appear a bit unusual. In either case, filling the void with worldly possessions becomes all too familiar for athletes surrounded by an enticing lifestyle often leading to scandal; performance-enhancing drugs, substance abuse and infidelity unfortunately become their reality. This altered reality negatively stereotypes players as a whole, producing the “they are all alike” stigma. At times, immorality does overshadow good, but in the end good conquers all; as stated in Romans 12:21 “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Just recently, a social media site launched an attack on one of the most prolific figures in the National Football

League - New York Jets quarterback Tim Tebow. To avoid giving any credit to the dating service website that advertised a $1 million payday for anyone who can disprove Tebow’s claim of being a virgin, it will remain nameless in this article. According to (the source of this information) members of the site questioned the validity of the claim against Tebow, who is single, handsome, and resistant to the temptations of beautiful women. Regardless the motive of this salacious website, it is clear the convictions of this devout Christian to practice abstinence has been pitted against the social norm shadowing the more worldly athletes. Christians are not perfect people, including Tim Tebow. Critics are baffled by the mystical persona of a man with such strong convictions

I thank God for placing Juan in my path and encouraging my Christian walk.

to live an orthodox lifestyle in a seemingly unorthodox world. As a sports figure, Tebow uses football as a platform to share his testimony of faith and to glorify God before men. There are many “Tebows” in the world of sports, who avoid the destructive lifestyle altogether and choose a path that provides the missing piece of their puzzling world. They become our Most Victorious Players (MVP) of sports – champions for Christ.

New York Yankees Closer, Mariano Rivera In 1990, Juan mentored one of baseball’s most dominant relievers in MLB’s history, New York Yankees’ pitcher Mariano Rivera. Before earning the nicknames Sandman, Super Mariano and the Greatest

Closer in Baseball, Rivera was a young rookie in the league and ministry. The Lord had a plan for Juan and Mariano; they both would eventually become disciples for Christ and great friends. Today, their families share a very special bond evolving through discipleship and living a lifestyle representing their love for God. “The Closer” was more than gracious to interview for this story and give accolades to his friend who shared with him the Gospel (when he first came to this country). Rivera has since made great accomplishments during his 22year baseball career including setting numerous records. He acknowledges, however, his off-the-field victory is the reason for his on-the-mound success. “I contribute everything I have achieved

to God. He made the impossible possible. When I accepted Christ, my life changed and so did my career. God made all the difference,” said Rivera. Just before the end of our interview, as he prepared for the 2012 opening season game series against the Tampa Bay Rays, Rivera closed by saying, “I thank God for placing Juan in my path and encouraging my Christian walk.” These two can definitely share the title, “Great Closers for Christ!”

SAVES Juan and Mariano are alumni’s of SCORE International. This organization hosts short-term mission trips to foreign countries. These trips are two-fold: (1) The clinics allow the athletes to

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 9

A Stable Man 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10 Summer Issue 2012

Develop a Personal Plan – Read/Pray Learn Promises of the Word Walk with mature Believer Ask God what & way Set Godly priorities Know difference between temporal/eternal Tell God thank you Get rest & relaxation Study men of Bible

teach the children baseball skills and techniques and (2) the Bible studies provide the opportunity for discipleship. A typical day starts as early as 7:30 a.m. and ends late into the evening. The crew is divided into groups and sent to different cities to present the Gospel. They have witnessed a great response to the ministry - many people have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. There have been times when enough people have accepted the call to salvation to begin a new church on the spot. The crew works closely with local churches and missionaries to follow-up with these young Christians to continue their discipleship. “Without the local missionaries, a lot of what we do would not be possible. They work extremely hard to make sure our trips are successful and we appreciate them very much,” says Sandra. “It is so important to me to make sure they are recognized for what they do for us.” Sandra Pinol and Clara Rivera joined their husbands for a short-term mission trip in 2006. This was the first time in SCORE’s history women [unofficially] accompanied the men. Since then the mission’s crew has expanded from 90 men in 2006 to approximately 300 men and women. It proved to be an unassumingly successful mission for the ladies. Now, the Dominican women

have a conference they could call their own. It is truly a blessing for all the women, especially the ones who longed for a ministry with a feminine touch. The woman-to-woman approach was definitely a grand slam! They set out with a game plan to visit orphanages, daycares, hospitals and housing for former prostitutes to share God’s love with the women and children in these facilities. The maternity ward is quite fascinating in comparison to what we are accustomed to in the US. There is no special treatment or catering in this place. Women give birth and two hours later walk out the door. There’s no air conditioning, private rooms or nurseries. So, one fun thing the mission’s crew does for these mothers and newborns is to shower them with gifts (diapers, clothing, toys and a personal gift for the new mother).

Home Base Back at home (US), Juan devotes countless hours sharing the Gospel with young athletes, as well as working with AIA, Baseball Chapel and SCORE. It would be very difficult for him to dedicate this time without the support of his lovely wife, Sandra. They serve as a surrogate family, along with their two Continued on page 14

Chaplain Juan Pinol, John Zeller, Rev. JJ Johnson and Ron Dock.

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 11

New York Yankees players pose for a group photo following Baseball Chapel.

Athletes listen intently as Chaplain Juan conducts Bible study [in Spanish]. These young men voluntarily attend weekend Chapel, starting their day early with a spiritual workout before heading to the practice field for physical conditioning.

12 Summer Issue 2012


Ronny Bautista, a 20-year old pitcher from the Dominican Republic (DR), is preparing not only for a promising career in baseball but also a closer relationship with God. “I want to serve the Lord with all my heart,” explains Bautista after his routine presence at Baseball Chapel. His comments come as no surprise to Ron Dock, Intervention Coordinator with the Yankees. “I knew he was anointed; I saw something really special in Ronny,” Dock shares, as he reflects on a visit to the DR where he witnessed a compassionate Ronny interacting with children at baseball camp. “He gave every bit of himself that day,” says Dock. Bautista’s dream is to make it to the Major League so that he could do more for disadvantaged youth. The doors are already opening for this young athlete. He signed with the Yankees in 2010 and is definitely not shy about giving God credit for his accomplishments. Bautista is reminded each time he steps out onto the diamond that “God is the one who makes it possible for me to do all things.” Chaplain Juan Pinol helps to keep many of the players grounded by encouraging their personal and spiritual growth. When asked how the chaplain has influenced his life since arriving to the US, Bautista chuckled and shared a profoundly poignant response. There was one Bible study that really inspired him, so Bautista says he folded the lesson plan, placed it in his shoe (where he keeps it) and “every morning I take it out and read it before going on the field.” It is obvious that this young man’s preparation for a successful career in baseball is also paving a way for him to make a difference in the world. Be au t y Talk Illustrated 13

TEAM PINOL Continued from page 11 sons, and over the years have become a pertinent part of the athlete’s travel arrangements to the US. The top priority for most of these athletes is to contact Juan Pinol once they arrive in Tampa. He is a father-like figure and Sandra serves as their surrogate mom. They utilize their God-given talents to minister the love of God and present the Gospel when the athletes need it most. They make themselves available to the athletes and their families, away from the limelight, oftentimes meeting in hotel rooms and homes. Juan introduces them to the community, shopping and the American lifestyle. He conducts Bible study on a regular basis, while Sandra often provides home-cooked meals. She mentors and provides support for the wives, sharing advice from her very own experiences as a young woman married to a professional baseball player. Together, they provide advice and

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counseling to couples. Teamwork has been a staple in their marriage from the very beginning. In 1986, a brief encounter at Sandra’s workplace led to a 25-year romance. As they described the details of that day, it is obvious by their playful contradictions these two are still in love. They joined their hands in marriage in 1987; the same year Juan accepted the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ into his life. This was a dream come true for Sandra, who Juan credits for giving him a very special gift when they began dating - his first Bible. “When Juan gave his life to Christ, it was the biggest blessing,” Sandra shared. This planted the seed that led to Juan’s Christian walk and remarkable journey. They both have served in many capacities of the church. Juan as a Pastor, Assistant Pastor, Deacon, Director of Education, Youth Leader, Sunday School teacher, and author of a

ministry leadership curriculum, “How to Become a Better Leader.” Church pastors often call on Juan to present this program to the church leadership. Having served as Sunday School teacher and superintendent, Sandra admits the most rewarding of her assignments is Director of Children’s Ministry. She receives such joy whenever former students express appreciation to her when reflecting favorably on that time in their lives. There is one thing certain about the day Juan and Sandra met – God’s ministry began to unfold in their lives.

Way to go, Team Pinol! Source: Juan and Sandra Pinol interview; Mariano Rivera interview; Athletes in Action and SCORE International staff and website;; and New York Yankees staff. A special thanks to Ron Dock, Intervention Specialist, New York Yankees.

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“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing.” Isaiah 43:18-19 NIV

Blast the Past from

By Chantelle Cudger

“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!” Isaiah 43:18-19 NIV


t’s a warm, breezy summer day, you and your gal pals have just barely managed stuffing your friend’s drop top with oh- only about twelve suitcases, filled with all of the essentials needed for your much anticipated annual road trip. You’re finally off and on your way! With your shades on and head tilted towards the sky, you begin to relax and let the wind caress your face. Everyone chimes in on the sing-a-long as the radio blares one of your favorite tunes. Then it happens, someone makes that inevitable statement - “Girl, do you remember when...” Now for my best friend and me that statement usually triggers good memories, but we also wander off into the land of I wish I hadn’t. The next thing we know, we’re

Prayer: Father, I can’t thank You enough for Your mercy and grace, it is because of it that my past no longer binds me. Lead my heart to rejoice in the new and wonderful purpose for which You have called me. Teach me to live each day with my eyes fixed on the goal where You are beckoning me onward to Jesus!

recounting a moment by moment run down of the good, the bad, and the ugly of our past experiences. So should we forget our past? Absolutely not! Though we shouldn’t forget our past, we certainly should not live in or dwell on it (Isaiah 43:18-19). God wants to do a new thing in our lives and in our hearts. But in order for us to reap the fruit of His plan we must first surrender the memories of past pain, guilt, and shame completely over to Him. When we’ve placed those memories at His feet we must also trust Him enough to leave them there. When we start out on a new journey it usually begins with our departure from familiar territory. For the most part, we are either ecstatic or Continued on page 18 Be au t y Talk Illustrated 17

hesitant about the new direction that our life is about to take in discovering new places. But not so fast! Before we can venture off to discover that uncharted territory, we often find ourselves taking a short detour down memory lane. When we do, it becomes irresistibly impossible to avoid a few of the crippling landmarks that we’ve stored up in our hearts along the way. There are those moments where we just can’t help cruising by the Bad Decision Deli, the Boyfriend Blues Bar, the Deadbeat Dad Diner, the Hate My Husband Hotel, the Stuck-in this Situation Station (fill-er-up!), and let’s not forget the School of Hard Knocks! Why is it every time God decides to take us to new destinations on our journey with Him, we find ourselves making those same pit stops? Dwelling on the bad and the ugly only allows the enemy to turn our past turmoil into excuses that we are not the most suitable person for the purpose that God has called us to fulfill. How do we overcome the fear that we are not worthy to do what God desires of us? First, we stop allowing our past to dictate our destination (Philippians 3:13-14). Second, we do not have to continually remind God of how hard our

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lives are or that we couldn’t possibly do what it is that He desires. He knows who we are, where we are, but most importantly where we’re going. When we make a pit stop during our travels, we are usually only there as long as necessary to collect what is of value for the journey ahead. If anything God intends for our past to be a humbling reminder of the fact that apart from Him we can do absolutely nothing. His Word says that in Christ we are new creations (2 Corinthians 5:17). That’s great news! The moment we allowed Christ into our heart as Lord of our life, the chains that bound us to our past were broken! We have been reconciled to God through Christ (2 Corinthians 5:18). God can also use our past as a testament of His mercy and grace, to mold and shape us into the likeness of His Son, drawing both ourselves and others closer to Him. Coming to grips with our past is a healing process that only the Father can guide us through. This may require that we repent of past thoughts, words, and actions that we haven’t already surrendered to God. It may also mean allowing Him to give us the strength to be able to move forward and forgive people who have deeply hurt us in

some way. All of these are vital actions that must be taken on our part, in conjunction with much prayer, time in His word, and wise godly counsel. By no means am I implying our journey through life will be an easy one. Neither am I implying we can purposely act in rebellion to God’s word and repent, thinking that we are all clear of His hand of discipline. Disobedience to God has consequences. Yet, it is with His loving hand of correction that the Father teaches us obedience through those consequences. You may be asking, “Well isn’t life with God supposed to be a whole lot easier?” The answer is a resounding, “Yes, it certainly is!” Life with God, however, does not promise the absence of trial or hardship. Our past should serve as a vivid remembrance of how difficult and unfulfilling life is without Him. So friends, we may not be exactly where we want to be on this road trip called life, but we should certainly take the opportunity every day to thank God, because of the redeeming blood of Jesus Christ, we aren’t where we used to be! (Chantelle Cudger, copyright 2011 all rights reserved.)

There is no perfect time than the present to focus on our mind, body and soul. Just as the athletes in this issue exercise their bodies for strength and durability it is even more important for our mind and soul to receive daily exercise of God’s word in our lives.

1 Timothy 4:7-9 (NKJV) But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness. For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance.

Proverbs 14:30 (NKJV) A sound heart is life to the body, but envy is rottenness to the bones.

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NKJV) Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.

Proverbs 3:7-8 (NKJV) Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and depart from evil. It will be health to your flesh and strength to your bones.

Isaiah 58:11 (NKJV) The LORD will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, And strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.

Proverbs 17:22 (NKJV) A merry heart does good, like medicine, but a broken spirit dries the bones.

Matthew 11:5 (ESV) The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them.



Proverbs 12:25 (NKJV)

Submit Your Prayer Requests

Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed.

Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad.

Hebrews 12:12-13 (NKJV)

3 John 1:2 (NKJV) Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers. Be au t y Talk Illustrated 19

Where ever God is that’s where I want to be!” - DeLeon


RICHARDS-SHEFFIELD Gospel Recording Artist, Entrepreneur and wife of retired MLB Gary Sheffield

20 Summer Issue 2012


PraiseAnista By Ida Walker


he’s confident, beautiful, graceful, and intelligent; and, most importantly, she loves the Lord! These characteristics are immediately noticeable when meeting DeLeon Richards-Sheffield. Our interview was nothing less than amazing and fun! Go ahead and add a great sense of humor to the myriad of attributes for this talented Gospel recording artist and businesswoman.

DeLeon has been in the Gospel music industry for more than three decades. Still today, while discussing the reason why she sings, everything about her radiates with excitement. Observing her youthful spirit and infectious smile was quite pleasing and explicitly says, “I love the Lord, I worship and adore Him – He is the reason why I sing!” And, for this reason we are pleased to recognize DeLeon as Beauty Talk Illustrated’s PraiseAnista. DeLeon knows God has given her a special gift; a voice that would reach the uttermost parts of the world spreading God’s awesome message of love. It would be very easy for her to pursue pop culture and enjoy a rise to the top of the Billboard charts. Instead, she chooses a music genre that rises to the highest heights – a place of worship and praise. There’s no mistaking, however, the great achievements she’s already made in Gospel music. DeLeon has many accolades to her credit, including the youngest Gospel artist ever to be nominated for a GRAMMY Award, Stellar Award nomination, GMWA Excellence Award and at the time of signing was the youngest Gospel artist to sign a major recording contract. When Word Records signed her, there were two Christian music sensations on its Label simultaneously; DeLeon and contemporary

Christian music pioneer Amy Grant. This Illinois native realized her calling early in life; at five years old she stepped onto the world stage to perform at the Chicago Gospel Festival. She then opened for the Mighty Clouds of Joy in Japan and has traveled throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and the West Indies. DeLeon is no stranger to religious and political circles. She has performed before the late President Ronald Reagan and served as the worship artist for Pastor Paula White at Bishop T.D. Jakes’ Gospel Megafest. She has also shared the stage with other awardwinning artists including Yolanda Adams, Shirley Ceasar, Kirk Franklin, Al Green, Fred Hammond, Patti LaBelle, Sandi Patty, BeBe and CeCe Winans, and the Winans. As a child, her entertainment repertoire was broadened when she landed a regular role on ABC’s television drama, “Brewster Place,” which starred Oprah Winfrey. She is essentially an old soul who is deep-rooted in her spirituality. Raised in the church, DeLeon contributes her musical and business savvy to parents: Dr. and Mrs. Robert (Debbie) Richards, Pastor and Co-Pastor of New Way of Life COGIC in Waukegan, Illinois. She inherited from them a rich entrepreneurial spirit; this family of real estate brokers owns several firms and

services a global community of investors. DeLeon started her professional singing career in the early 1980s. The young vocalist stepped center-stage and blessed the Gospel music community with her adorable voice singing, “I’m gonna move on up the mountain, I’m gonna pull the Devil down, Cause he doesn’t have a right to be on the higher ground.” When DeLeon performed “Move On Up The Mountain” she was well on her way to a successful music career. Back then, as we began to hear DeLeon’s voice on the radio, she created a buzz in Christian circles and it wasn’t long before her music became the favorite lyrics of youth choirs in churches across the country. There were no “American Idols,” “America’s Got Talent” or YouTube to showcase the talents of this gifted singer. But, this young protégé was represented by the best talent agency in the business – her Heavenly Father and parents.

Proverbs 22:6, Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. Be au t y Talk Illustrated 21

Gospel music was part of DeLeon’s DNA; her mom, Debbie, is an accomplished singer and music director who has impacted the lives of numerous youth in the church. Before DeLeon came along, Debbie was practically a second mom to many of the young people in the choir. So, when their darling little girl finally arrived, DeLeon shared her mother with all the children she mentored – they were in essence her brothers and sisters. DeLeon accompanied her mom on all singing engagements and, at times, they would share the stage. On one particular trip to Houston, Texas, Debbie lifted her tiny tot onto the offering table and the rest is history. After that performance it became obvious that mom’s energy would be devoted to cultivating DeLeon’s music career, which has since spanned more than 30 years. DeLeon is busier than ever these days. In addition to her career as a recording artist, she is also an entrepreneur and philanthropist. She’s owner of the record label, DeMari, Inc.; partner in Sheffield Management and Entertainment, specializing in athletes and entertainers; owner of DeLeon Sheffield Company, a full service real estate agency; and co-owner of a quaint little resort on Anna Maria Island. Through her husband’s organization, “Gary Sheffield Foundation,” they make time to give back to the community. The Foundation gives the Sheffields an opportunity to support children and families that demonstrate a profound personal need. Last year in recognition of Gary’s contribution to the community and baseball, Belmont Heights Little League Park in Tampa (where he played as a youth) renamed a baseball playing field in his honor. DeLeon is inspiring the Christian community through the airwaves. As the newly appointed radio show host on 95.7 The Beat’s, “Sunday Morning Glory,” she shares the word of God and expresses personal testimonies on Twitter and Facebook. Tune in any Sunday and witness this talented and anointed young woman

I use

- DeLeon

Check DeLeon out every Sunday on 95.7 The Beat’s,“Sunday Morning Glory,” Tampa, FL, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. For those out of the area you can download the Iheart radio app on your smartphone enter 95.7 The Beat in Tampa. You can always listen online at or visit her blog: keyword DELEON. Websites: and

every opportunity to open

up the

22 Summer Issue 2012

of God in action. Lastly and certainly not the least are her most cherished roles - being a mother to three very active boys and wife to retired Major League Baseball outfielder, Gary Sheffield. So, how does DeLeon manage to keep all the balls in the air? “Keeping God number one is the glue that keeps it all together,” she says. DeLeon credits her husband, Gary, and their parents with being a wonderful support system. As our interview came to a close, we fondly reminisced about some of the church traditions that fostered a strong foundation

within us and we realized our children may never reap the benefits of the “old school” experiences we encountered in church. You know . . . those special little nuggets of spiritual disciplines taught by our grandparents and Church elders. “There seems to be too much fluff today,” says DeLeon when referencing some of the changes in the church. Many have completed a spiritual transformation which in some cases have left traditions behind and adapted new ways of presenting God’s word. Although, most churches are successful with this transition, there may be some that have lost something valuable along the way. The key is to stay true to Biblical principles as they are written to effectively present the Gospel in an ever-evolving world. DeLeon is definitely doing her part by ministering the Word through songs, praise and worship. It was truly refreshing to listen as DeLeon talked passionately about every facet of her life and she is clearly doing exactly what God has called her to do. “God has a plan for every aspect of our life; He knows what we need, when we need it and why,” DeLeon says. So when God provides an opportunity, she seizes it. Her full-wholesome lifestyle is only the beginning of what’s to come. “I use every opportunity to open up the door to new ones,” DeLeon shares as she looks to the horizon. She doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon; she’s working on a new project that is expected to be released this fall. DeLeon says her plans afterwards are to simply, “Keep things moving.”

door to new ones.” - DeLeon

DELEON UPCLOSE AND PERSONAL How did you and Gary meet? In 1999, I met Gary in the lobby of the New York Hilton Hotel. The NBA All-Star event was taking place and we met through mutual friends.

What was your first conversation like? He talked and I listened. He probably talked for about 35 minutes and he covered a range of topics that was going on in his life. He did NOT mention he was a baseball player but before he got up he told me, “You’re going to be my wife.”

What is your biggest life achievement?

My children.

How do you balance your spiritual, family and professional life? Keeping God number one is the glue that keeps it all together. Knowing boundaries helps balance everything. I’ve learned you can’t do everything and I don’t guilt myself if I can’t do something. I do my absolute best to make it work, but if I can’t I’ve also learned the wonderful word NO!

What is your favorite scripture and why? Philippians 4:13, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (NKJV) Just when you think you can’t, God let’s you know you can!

What are some of the projects you are working on today? I’ve been back and forth in the studio working on new music. I hope to have some new music out by fall 2012. I would also love to see Gospel expanded in Tampa. I hope to hear 24-hour Gospel in Tampa and, hopefully, I can make that happen one hour at a time.

I listened to part of your latest CD. I love it! What inspires your lyrics? I try to express things that are relevant and close to my heart.

What would you say brings you joy? Seeing everyone happy!

What is one of your proudest moments? I have many! But I think it’s watching my boys take the things that I’ve taught them and actually doing it!


A PraiseAnista has Praise in her heart and in her spirit, “A Neverending Interest to Satisfy the Almighty.” The fashion world spotlights the Fashionista as someone influenced by highfashion and trends. The discount designer chain recognizes a Maxxinista as an expert shopping for deals at a TJ Max store. Well, Beauty Talk Illustrated has its very own “PraiseAnista,” a woman who loves to praise God! She is passionate about worship and shares with others His love in her life. Be au t y Talk Illustrated 23

Girls Got TALENT

NATIVITY CATHOLIC SCHOOL Congratulations to the 8th grade Nativity Catholic School Girls Softball Team in Brandon, Florida


hey won their 3rd championship season! As they graduate and go on to high school these talented young ladies will take with them something truly valuable – the knowhow to succeed.


24 Summer Issue 2012

Their coach, Pam Lundy, led them to three consecutive undefeated seasons amounting to 34-0. They have outscored their opponents this season alone 246-40 in runs. Coach Lundy said that out of 71 boys and girls in 8th grade, with half being girls, she had the most girl student athletes this year at 25.

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 25

26 Summer Issue 2012

Lindsay Burnley

Time Management

Mallory Washington

LaCameya Roper

By Lindsay Burnley University of South Florida

What You Should Expect the Freshman Year

Time management has always been something I have struggled with. Especially now, being in college and trying to balance school, work, friends, family, and most importantly God, it seems that there is never enough time to dedicate myself fully to anything. Yet Proverbs 16:3 says it perfectly, “Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established.” When we put God before all else, we are ensured the ability to pursue the rest. Starting each day off with a little chat with God could make a world of difference in the outcome of your day. Set goals for accomplishing tasks and make lists each day; it is amazing how good it feels to be able to cross out completed “things-todo” and being able to visualize how much you are getting done. Then at the end of the week, if you feel good about all you have accomplished, reward yourself by going out with a friend on a shopping trip or getting your nails done. At the end of each day be sure to thank God for all that He has blessed us with. Our plans may not always work out, but God will always give us the strength and motivation to persevere to our ultimate goals and the path He has designed for each of us.

“Stay prayed up and keep God first in your life,” is the best advice I can give to help someone get through their freshman year or life itself. High school does not prepare students for what they will experience their freshman year of college - from the strange encounters with your roommates to failing or dropping your first prerequisite class for your major. FRESHMAN (Fast Reborn Establishing Student Horrified Motivated Acquainted Nomad) year students are trying to find a way to their future career path. You encounter along the way experiences that strengthens your character, transform you into a new person, and prompt you to experience new things, all while you are trying to make a name for yourself on campus and becoming acquainted with the fast-paced college campus lifestyle. No two people go through the same freshman experience. Everyone is challenged in different ways. However, at the end of freshman year, coming out stronger will be the end results when you stay close to God, keep Him first, and never lose sight of why you are there. Remember, God will not take you through anything you cannot bear. So when the going gets tough, get on your knees and pray, because a student’s faith and character will be challenged! Best way to fight is to let go and let God handle it!

Going to college is a great experience and a reward in itself. I have learned a lot from my college classes and experiences. Let me share them with you in hopes it will help guide you after you receive your degree. Once graduating college, you have the opportunity to fully experience the real world and begin a career in either your field of study or whatever else you decide to pursue. Sometimes it is necessary to attend graduate school and many grads will have to work while furthering their education. The economic downturn and limited employment makes it more difficult to find a job, let alone the one you have prepared for when originally selecting a degree. Oftentimes graduates must continue with jobs held prior to graduation or get new jobs that have nothing to do with what they have studied. I would suggest starting to look for jobs before you graduate, because this will give you the time and opportunity to view all options. Do not be dismayed; determination is the key to landing the hard-to-get positions that compliment your degree. Don’t give up - pursue the career in your field of study you have worked years to earn. In my case, after graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communication TV/ Radio, I decided to pursue grad school and earn a Master’s degree in Film Production. The next big step is to get a job in the broadcasting industry.

By Mallory Washington University of Florida

College Grad – Now what? By LaCameya Roper Texas Wesleyan University

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 27

“This magazine will be a blessing to many. I look forward to more articles and information on the many dynamic Christian women.“ Rev. Marticia D. Banks-Booker, CDFM

“Welcome to the world of publishing! Just saw your new online mag and it’s a terrific job. Very attractive and professional looking. Plus great photography. “ Adele Woodyard (Author of Florida “Freebies” and “Cheapies”250 Daytrips for Little or No Money)

“Awesome! Awesome! Awesome! One for the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit! To allow God to use you and to deliver this digital magazine is to truly be in God’s will. Congratulations! So many great articles, tips, words of encouragement and empowerment.” Ruby Gadson “AWESOME!”

Rev. Gee Thompson

“WOW!!!! Great Idea! Congratulations!” Retired Director US Marshals Service Eduardo Gonzalez

“I am so proud of you, the magazine is excellent.” Retired Chief of Police Bennie Holder

28 Summer Issue 2012

“Wow! It’s awesome!! Congratulations!!” Samantha Bethel-Ellison

“I love it! The magazine, it’s going to be a big hit!”

Lynne McKinley-Pate

“OMG!!!!! I saw the magazine just now. What can I say? Words can’t even express how beautifully illustrated it is.” Elisheva Morgan Williams

“I just reviewed your magazine—it is phenomenal!!! I love it!!! “ Montrae M. Waiters

“OMG!!!!! I am blown away by the premier issue of Beauty Talk Illustrated. It is absolutely awesome - the uplifting content, the format, the design, everything! It immediately had me roped in and left me wanting more.“ Monica Carter

“OMG … I’m viewing it now and jumping up in my seat!!! I click and read and can’t wait to get to the next page!!!”

Kamara Marcus

One Cool Way to

Beat the Summer Heat! By Allison Smith


o Sisters, it’s that time of year when the temperature is on the rise and people are coming outdoors to enjoy the beautiful weather. And yes, many of you are planning your outdoor workout programs. At Beauty Talk Illustrated, we want to help you with your fitness plan! Let’s start with one of the coolest items that must be on the agenda. Whether your plan is walking, running, cycling, swimming, PX90, Insanity, strength training or Zumba, the first thing you need to remember is to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! As an Army Drill Sergeant, I would say to my soldiers, “DRINK WA-TERRRRR!” They would emphatically respond in a loud voice, “BEAT THE HEAT, DRILL SERGEANT, BEAT THE HEAT!” We instilled that thought in our soldiers because we knew without water they would be prone to heat injuries or even death. So, before you begin or continue any fitness program you need to ensure water consumption is included in your plans. Some of you may ask why drinking water is so important. According to the International Sports Sciences Association, the human body is made up of 55 to 75 percent water. Secondly, aside from oxygen, water is the most important compound that the human body needs for survival. Every system in the body depends on water. The body can go several weeks without food but only days without water. How much water do you think we should drink per day? The Institute of Medicine recommends that women drink nine 8-ounce glasses of fluid. Do you have a problem consuming that much water?

both this life and the next. This is true and everyone should accept it. We have to ensure our spiritual fitness plan includes water as well. Jesus knew that in our spiritual walk we would get thirsty. In John 7:37-38, Jesus says “. . . If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.” In John 7:39, John explains that the water Jesus is speaking of is the Holy Spirit. Just as we need water to prevent heat injury and death, we need the Holy Spirit to keep us He is our comforter, advisor, and counselor. He is a must in our spiritual development. Wow, we have Jesus as our very own Personal Trainer and the Holy Ghost as our water! That just makes me want to shout and drink more of Him and when I finish shouting, I can go drink one of my nine glasses of water! So as I used to say to my soldiers, “DRINK WATER!” Before you answer this question, let me share several benefits of drinking water. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

Water flushes toxins out of vital organs Water provides the electrolytes needed for your organs to function properly Water carries nutrients to our cells Water aids in weight loss Water can reduce hunger Water hydrates skin thus making you look younger

Hopefully, these six benefits will motivate you to include water in your physical fitness plan. Let’s take a look for a moment at the most important form of conditioning – our spiritual fitness. The Apostle Paul, in I Timothy 4:7-9 (NLT), teaches us to spend our time and energy in training ourselves for spiritual fitness. Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important for it promises a reward in

About the Author Allison Smith is a retired United States Army Command Sergeant Major, with over 27 years of military service. She is a native of Portsmouth, Virginia. In addition to her Army career, she has been featured in Ebony Magazine’s article “The Many Splendored Faces of Today’s Black Women.” Smith is a fitness trainer, facilitator, mentor, and coach. She writes and consults about Triune Fitness and encourages women by reminding them that they are beautiful, powerful and intelligent because God says so! Her favorite scriptures are Romans 12:1-2 and Colossians 3:23. Allison has been a fitness trainer for over 18 years and is certified with the International Sports Sciences Association. You may contact Allison via email or RightChoices, P.O. Box 508, Fort Belvoir, VA 22060. Be au t y Talk Illustrated 29


Mission Possible: 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games By Jeanene LeSure


came into this world as a blessing from God. I am not just a blessing for my family and friends, but for all those I would encounter throughout my life’s journey. So when I think of His purpose, the mission designed for me to complete becomes pretty clear to me. I am constantly learning (through personal and professional experiences), that my mission is not so much to arrive at a certain destination (here on Earth), it is to arrive at my destination by discovering my own journey. He has given me the strength and will to serve Him by serving His people. Next summer, July 13-18, 2013, Tampa will host the 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games (NVWG)! This event is the largest annual multi-wheelchair sports competition in the world. It will

30 Summer Issue 2012

be the second time in its 32-year history that the event will be held in the state of Florida. The first time the event was hosted in Florida was in Miami in 1991. I am greatly humbled by the amazing opportunity to lead the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and Paralyzed Veterans of America’s aim to serve our nation’s heroes. Veterans will travel from all across the United States, Puerto Rico and Great Britain to compete throughout the week in 17 competitive events, including: air guns, archery, basketball, bowling, field, handcycling, motorized wheelchair rally, nineball, power soccer, quad rugby, softball, swimming, table tennis, track, trapshooting, weightlifting and wheelchair slalom. Tampa will also have the opportunity to showcase our beautiful waters by offering

adaptive waterskiing as our exhibition event. The Tampa Convention Center and Tampa Bay Times Forum will serve as the main venues for the indoor games. The outdoor events will be held at the University of South Florida, New Tampa YMCA, Pin Chasers Bowling Lanes, and Silver Dollar Trap Club. The NVWG recruits approximately 3,000 community volunteers to help make the event a huge success. There are also numerous corporate and private sponsorship opportunities available providing unique branding and company volunteer benefits. For more information on the National Veterans Wheelchair Games please visit

We know that many are called, yet only a few are chosen. When these brave veterans were given their first military assignments, the final outcome was unknown. These heroes, however, believed in their mission and wore the armor of bravery to ensure it would be completed. I too have faith in my mission. My destination is eternal salvation. My mission on this path is to: empower others as a great role model, mentor, friend, loving soul, and spiritual woman of God. I know my mission is possible...and one day, I shall arrive! Follow Jeanene LeSure in future editions of Beauty Talk Illustrated as the National Veterans Wheelchair Games makes its way to Tampa 2013!

About the Author Jeanene LeSure received a Bachelors of Science degree in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of Florida - Go Gators! She worked for two years as a Recreation Therapist for Adolescents at Shepherd Center in Atlanta, GA. Jeanene relocated back to her home town of Tampa, FL, working as a Recreation Therapist in the Polytrauma Rehabilitation Unit, Spinal Cord Injury Center and most recently in the Adaptive Sports Program at the James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital. She is certified through the National Council of Therapeutic Recreation Certification and also holds a specialization from the Certification of Brain Injury Specialists. Jeanene is married to Jarred LeSure. Jeanene’s newest career endeavor involves serving as Local Organizing Committee Coordinator for the 33rd National Veterans Wheelchair Games to be held in Tampa next summer! For more information about the Games, contact Jeanene via email: Be au t y Talk Illustrated 31

Kick Off

Your Dancing Shoes Take 5 and Relax


Prayer is the greatest antidote for what ails your body, mind and soul. Take several prayer breaks during the day and greatly improve your health. Physicians and researchers are realizing what Christians have known for centuries – prayer changes things!

“Research focusing on the power of prayer in healing has nearly doubled in the past 10 years,” says David Larson, MD, MSPH, president of the National Institute for Healthcare Research, a private nonprofit agency. Until recently, this organization refused any research that used the word “prayer.” What convinced them to change? Study-after-study revealed the positive effects prayer had on individuals who believed. These evidentiary studies have proven that people of faith tend to live longer, healthier lives. Although prayer is the first line of treatment for most people who believe in God, the medical profession is beginning to accept it as a supplement to treatment. So, go ahead . . . try it! Your daily scripture reading and prayer will surely relieve stress, calm the body and promote healing.

Source: WebMD Feature, “Can Prayer Heal?” by Jeanie Davis


Take a moment to read Beauty Talk Illustrated Magazine and become encouraged, inspired and empowered to share God’s love with others.


Water, often referred as H2O, is

an important element. It is the only thing we absolutely need in our lives; we need it to cook, clean, wash, and survive. In this issue, TRIune FITness writer and coach Allison Smith, gives you a refreshing dose of water’s essentials. Check it out on page 29.

32 Summer Issue 2012


The power of touch provides comfort to babies when cuddled and expresses love to the giver and receiver of hugs. There are many ways to enjoy the therapeutic values afforded by a simple touch. Nine2Five’s professional Deirdre Joseph expresses it perfectly when sharing her secret to relaxation, “I’ve never met a spa I didn’t like!” Take time to schedule a Spa moment. It could be a visit to a professional for a massage, an exchange of manicures and pedicures at a girls retreat, or a simple hug with anyone in need of a little love. Touch someone today!


The essence of beauty is cultivated within. A consistent relationship with God assures the inner parts of you will reflect love in your everyday talk and walk – it becomes a lifestyle that is pleasing to Him. 1 Peter 3:3-4 (NKJV), Do not let your adornment be merely outward— arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel— rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 33




Nine Five DEIRDRE JOSEPH Homeland Security Grant Accountant Tampa Police Department


eirdre has the awesome responsibility of managing complex grant rules and keeps track of millions of dollars for Homeland Security. She arises early with thankfulness for yet another day and a Morning Prayer for guidance and peacefulness.

What scripture or quote would you share with others today?

As much as you think you are in control, you are not, so as Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

What is your most important life lesson learned? I’m still in class.

What is your greatest challenge in the workplace?

Using one word to describe your career, what would it be? Diverse (I’ve been everything from an auditor to a massage therapist!)

Share at least one memorable community service moment?

While teaching an etiquette class to underprivileged children, one of the limousines that I used to take us to dinner was limo-jacked as we stood waiting! What a lesson in flexibility and patience.

What do you like to do for fun?

Travel, volunteer, scrapbook and comedy shows.

To not let my job define whom I am because I am so much more!

How do you relax and rejuvenate?

How do you handle it?

If God had a sense of humor, what would you say to Him?

Have a life outside of work!

34 Summer Issue 2012

I’ve never met a spa I didn’t like!

I have plans ... I’m sure God laughs and probably thinks this is the funniest statement of all!


Inside & Out It’s a Lifestyle

6 Benefits of


We are marvelously made by God (Psalm 139:13-18). We are His masterpiece, and the human body - it is quite amazing! Each part has a viable function that works in unison with another (our legs, toes, hands, arms, fingers, brain, lungs, heart, kidney, liver, etc.) Our bodies are meant for movement and physical activity. The benefits are huge! It keeps us physically and mentally fit and produces the energy, strength and flexibility we need for daily activities. Check out these six ways to improve your life with exercise. 1. Exercise controls weight Take the stairs instead of the elevator or walk from the far end of parking lot. 2. Exercise combats health conditions and diseases Decrease your chance of having a wide-range of health problems including stroke, type 2 diabetes, depression, certain types of cancer and arthritis. 3. Exercise improves mood Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed. 4. Exercise boosts energy When your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy during the day. 5. Exercise promotes better sleep It can help you fall asleep faster and deepen your sleep. 6. Exercise can be fun It gives you a chance to unwind, enjoy the outdoors or simply engage in activities that make you happy. The bottom line on exercise: Physical activity is a great way to feel better, gain health benefits and have fun. Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. (Source: Mayo Clinic, 2012) Be au t y Talk Illustrated 35

Secrets of a

Successful Book Club By Sisters of the Bay Book Club


he lazy days of summer are upon us and it’s no better time than the present to start your very own book club! If you are interested in sharing a good book with good people, Sisters of the Bay Book Club (SBBC) can get you started with a few successful tips.

When Oprah launced her popular book club in 1996, she generated a reading phenominon that sent a wave of enthusiam for books throughout the country. Suddenly, struggling authors received a big boost from Oprah’s recommendations and social networks was on the rise everywhere, expressing love for the written word and great fellowship as a bonus. SBBC is one of those groups; they will celebrate their 15 year anniversary in September 2012. Over the years, SBBC has accumulated a wealth of information and is delighted to share advice with novice book clubs. So, join them for a step-by-step guide that will lead you to a place where characters meet characters. SBBC ANNIVERSARY RECAP Five words summarize our remarkable journey: entertaining, fulfilling, sensational, revealing, and concinnity. To concinnate means to fit or blend elements together so skillfully and appropriately that they form a harmonious and elegant whole. The word “concinnity” reflects the essence of the “Sisters of the Bay Book Club” and contributes greatly to their success. The club was started in 1997 with just two members - one of which is still a core member of the group. We still operate under the original organization details and continue to use the same format; in particular, the hostess for the book club meeting will pick the book and the date of 36 Summer Issue 2012

the next meeting. We generally have at least a month to read the selected book.

1) Develop and Outline

• Organization Details • Name of the Club • Mission Statement • Types of Books • Group Composition/Size • Structure

A few years ago we started a book list that is comprised of at least two selections from each member. Each year we append the list. The hostess can choose a selection from that list or any other of her choice. The hostess organizes the meeting, and provides refreshments or in our case, “food.” Incorporating food into our group discussions opened up an entirely new dimension. The meals are multicourse, the food is delicious, and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming. We share community concerns and the concerns of life transitions. This also affords us the chance to chit-chat and catch up on the latest news.

2) Develop a Meeting Format

• Discuss club business • Book discussion • Pick hostess for next meeting and book • Announce next meeting time and date • Food or Refreshments

SBBC is a well-ran book club in that it is a model of democracy, minimum administration, and the majority rules. Policies evolve as needed, and the group exists solely for the benefit of all the members. The SBBC is comprised of six core members of various diverse backgrounds personally and professionally. Each member was introduced into the group by an existing member and have all been a part of the group for 15 years. One key reason our book club has been so successful is “Good Membership Candidates.”

3) Membership Candidates

• Interested, Willing, Enthusiastic • Must Meet Reading Level Criteria • Conscientious Reader • Committed • Inquisitive and Flexible • A Good Listener • A Good Participant • Sense of Humor • Focused • Intelligent

Some may see this list as a bit challenging; namely, some of our husbands who often tease us about the fact that not even “Oprah” can get into our club. In essence, we’ve sought candidates of sincere intent and active intelligence. With these qualities we have formed a very special and successful book club that has given us an opportunity to read all the books we never got around to reading or read them again with different perspectives. Title selection has exposed all of us to books that we may not have chosen ourselves. Being a part of SBBC has given us the opportunity to belong to an accepting, validating, nonjudgmental group of women who really enjoy spending time with each other and reading.

4) Membership Rewards

• Weekend Retreat • Holiday Dinner

During the fall of each year the SBBC holds its annual “Weekend Retreat.” We cherish the opportunity to get away from work and family to relax, enjoy and catch up with what’s going on in each other’s lives. Another rewarding experience we share, along with our spouses, is the celebration of the holidays. Our annual “Holiday Dinner” brings us all together for an enjoyable evening. There is a saying that you can choose your friends but not your family. It’s not so in our case, the SBBC is family and we are the secret to our success! For more information about SBBC, send an email to

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 37

38 Summer Issue 2012


One Nation Under God


There was One Nation Under God as America celebrated National Day of Prayer (NDP) on May 3, 2012. Organizers in Tampa, Florida stepped out on faith to take the event to a larger venue. NDP Director Joy Green, Pastor Rob and Jennifer Mallan from Christian Family Church, coordinators and volunteers could not have been more pleased. Nearly 1,600 worshippers filled Steinbrenner Baseball Stadium for an evening of worship, praise and prayer. Local pastors and musicians, government officials, Gospel recording artists DeLeon Sheffield, Julianna Zobrist, and Ricardo Sanchez contributed to this glorious worship experience.

Women of Woodlawn (WOW) Chapel Women’s Ministry from Fort Belvoir, Virginia participated in the Susan G. Komen Global Race for the Cure in Washington, D.C. on June 2, 2012. WOW enjoyed a fun-filled day while making a difference in the fight against breast cancer. It was an awesome experience to walk and honor those courageous survivors who have traveled the road of cancer. WOW was trained by Beauty Talk Illustrated’s Triune Fitness writer, Allison Smith. They are pictured above with Carla Hall, former competitor on Bravo’s “Top Chef” and co-host of ABC’s talk show, “The Chew.”

Hattitudes Tea It began as a social gathering for friends and blossomed into a fabulous annual Tea with Hattitude. Founders and coordinators April Jones and Ebony Davis hosted more than 50 guests for the 2nd Annual Hattitudes Tea. It was held at the beautiful Hunter’s Green Country Club in Tampa, Florida. The guests enjoyed a delightful luncheon and an inspiring program with several dynamic speakers. The vision of these two young ladies has expanded to Jacksonville, Florida and it appears that it will not stop there. Stay-tuned, ladies, for more excitement! A Hattitudes 2-day Christian woman’s conference is on the horizon.

Let Beauty Talk Illustrated Feature Your Next Event! Email us at

Be au t y Talk Illustrated 39

40 Summer Issue 2012

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