By Rachel Hoeing
We’re bringing more amazing moms to you today! We are happy to introduce you to Leslie, Wendy and Jane. Enjoy meeting these local moms who have bright futures ahead of them and are changing the lives of others along the way …
Born and raised in the Long Horn State, Leslie majored in finance at the University of Texas. But she chose fitness over finance and became a Senior Trainer for MOSSA. But that’s not to say she never uses her finance degree. She does, after all, pay the bills. But when her husband Justin, then the lead writer of recruitment advertising for the Marines, started a business, her financial powers were once again put to proper use.
ZZZ Bears was started when their then 5-year old daughter Emma had trouble going to sleep. “She was afraid of the dark, bad dreams and for some reason, tornados,” says Leslie. That’s when Justin came up with the idea for ZZZ bears. Sgt. Sleeptight, a ZZZ Bear, is a stuffed bear dressed in a military uniform designed to protect children as they sleep from bad dreams, fear of the dark and more. Leslie tells the story of the first time they presented Sgt. Sleeptight to Emma. “This is Sgt. Sleeptight,” we told her, “part of an elite force that has protected our nation for more than 200 years. And now he’s ready to protect you.” “Every night,” we told her, “we’ll station him outside your door, where he’ll watch over you as you sleep.” “What if he falls asleep?” She asked. “He’s a Marine,” We told her. “He would never fail his mission!” That night, Emma slept like, well, a hibernating bear.
Today, ZZZ Bears is run out of their home here in the Triad and are sold exclusively online. “What I’m most proud of,” says Leslie “is our mission to provide good nights and bright futures for the children of fallen heroes through our donations to the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation.”
LOVE NEVER FAILS – this is Wendy’s new theme in life as she starts the 2015–2016 school year. Beginning her 18th year as a math teacher at Parkland High School, she is more determined than ever to make sure that her students know that she believes in them, loves them, and expects them to do great things. She is excited to work with them to ensure that they have dreams and hopes, and the right strategies in place so that they can achieve them. Reminding herself, that in any situation that comes her way, choosing to respond with love over frustration, anger, or impatience will make everyone’s life just a little bit less stressful!
When she is not working, Wendy loves to come home to her wonderful husband, Tim, and two children Jacob (13) and Jessi Kate (9). She is so proud of the people her children are becoming – Jessi Kate has found a passion with singing and music. The sound of her sweet voice brings joy to Wendy’s heart. Jacob has found a passion in swimming. She is often the loudest mom at the pool cheering Jake on to meet his goals in his events, knowing full well that he cannot hear a word she is saying. She keeps cheering anyway!
In her spare time, she loves running with her friends – Cindy, Colleen, Amanda, and Dale Ann, and working with the parents of New Sherwood Pool and Tennis to create great memories for the kids on their swim team. She also attends First Presbyterian Church, where she is involved in her Sunday School Class and the Exaltation Ringers. Fall is her favorite time of year, as it brings new beginnings, crisp smells and breezes in the air, and her favorite thing of all – NEW SCHOOL SUPPLIES!
Jane Daniel can be best described as a wife and mother to three active boys ages 12, 9 and 5. In recent years she was able to work as a bookkeeper out of her home, which allowed her to plan around the active schedules of her family. Jane has always been interested in health and has enjoyed physical activity of some form most of her life. After the death of her mom from lung cancer when Jane was just 12, she found exercise was a positive way to get endorphins up when she was feeling down. She also realized how short life is and to take care of herself so she could see her grandchildren one day.
After discarding the ideas of calorie and fat gram counting, Jane started listening to her body to see which foods were her fuel and which were her kryptonite. She was amazed at the results: clean eating with little effort. The binge-fest weekends of food followed with a Monday morning “get back on track” mentality was replaced with moderation every day of the week. “I figured out which foods made me tired, bloated, or made me crave more of the bad stuff, and I removed them from my diet.”
Wanting to learn more and help others, Jane enrolled in the Institute of Integrative Nutrition last year to become a holistic health coach. The school was appealing because of their bio-individual approach to each person. No one diet or meal plan is perfect for everyone. Spirituality, career, and relationships significantly impact what different people choose to eat.
Jane’s focus is to help busy families be the healthiest they can be. She knows firsthand how hard it can be to schedule exercise and cook healthy meals between work, volunteering, and shuffling kids in many different directions. To learn more about Jane’s approach, check out her website, www.janedanielinhc.com!