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Are the Kids Alright?

Posted by Cynthia Brian on
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Empowerment
Are the Kids Alright?
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MIRACLE MOMENT®

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us.” Marianne Williamson 


PEAR AND WINE FESTIVAL, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24TH&

Welcome pear festivalOur teen radio host and reporter, Sharayna Roy, is busy chairing the involvement of Be the Star You Are!® in the Pear and Wine Festival to be held Saturday, September 24th at the Moraga Commons Park in Moraga, not far from St. Mary’s College. Our booth will have a variety of super fun activities for kids including making pin wheels, planting seeds for literacy, reading circles, and spin the wheel. She is also organizing a lottery for great prizes, and a bargain book bin. Several of our hosts and reporters from Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio will be in attendance to talk to attendees. Cynthia Brian will be autographing the new picture book, No Barnyard Bullies along with her other bestselling books and there will be more surprises. The festival itself promises food, music, games, jump houses, inflatables, pie eating contests, and of course wine! Come play from 11-3pm for a day of family fun and love. Many thanks to our sponsors, The Lamorinda Weekly, www.LamorindaWeekly.comand MB Jessee Painting, www.MBJessee.com

More info at https://www.bethestaryouare.org/events-1/2022-pear-and-wine-festival-a-day-of-free-family-fun

Sharanya-STAR


SIMPLE KINDNESS

kindness quote 2It’s often the little things that brighten our moments.  We may wonder how a simple nod of the head or a good morning smile could make a difference.  But if someone is depressed or even feeling a bit down, that simple gesture can be a reminder that they are valued.

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Karen Kitchel who penned two chapters in the book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. www.scatteringkindness.com


See You At the Pear and Wine Festival!

We invite you to get involved, volunteer, make a difference and donate.

Thanks for being YOU!
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Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3

PO Box 376

Moraga, Ca. 94556
Are the Kids Alright?


A MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CYNTHIA BRIAN

2021 Pear Festival-covid-masks down (1) 2Tattooed on seven time Formula 1 world champion, Lewis Hamilton’s chest is the phrase “Powerful Beyond Measure”. As a dyslexic Black kid in a predominantly white school, he struggled academically, was bullied by classmates, and told by teachers that he would never be anything. With determination, grit, and stamina, he proved everyone wrong to become one of the most famous athletes on the planet. 

Lewis’s trajectory is an admirable success story. He’s a role model with a lesson about believing in yourself, no matter the odds.

Today’s youth are in crisis with soaring rates of depression and anxiety. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 10 high school students attempted suicide in 2021. Between 2010 and 2020 suicide rates rose 53%. Suicide is now the second leading cause of death for teenagers.

This is alarming.

At Be the Star You Are!®, the majority of the people we work with are adolescents, many of whom are immigrants or children of immigrants from numerous countries, creeds, and cultures. On our unedited and uncensored teen radio broadcast, Express Yourself!™, our young reporters and hosts tackle and debate issues that concern them. The Supreme Court’s unpopular decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade has many high school seniors, both male and female, deciding not to apply to colleges in states where bodily autonomy and freedom of choice is not guaranteed. The political turmoil, sexism, racial intolerance, white supremacy increase, anti-immigration fervor, conspiracy theories, unabated lies, gun violence, Russia’s war, and the rise of autocracy have these young people understandably worried. Climate change and global warming instill a fear that our future Earth may not be hospitable to humans. By talking about these realities and sharing their opinions, our thoughtful and intelligent teens shine a light on how we can be powerful beyond measure when we embrace democracy, peace, and love. Select a topic and tune in at 

https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself . When teens talk, the world needs to listen.

As parents, teachers, and guardians we strive to understand, to guide, to be truthful. We need to be role models, share experiences, provide love, and show approval. The new children’s picture book, No Barnyard Bullies,addresses these and other complex issues in the hope of instilling kindness and inclusivity in children from a young age. No one likes a bully, not even in the animal kingdom. Read more: https://www.lamorindaweekly.com/archive/issue1615/New-childrens-book-addresses-complex-issues-of-kindness-and-inclusivity.html

For a joyful family day, come join us at the Pear and Wine Festival on Saturday, September 24th in Moraga. Our teen chairperson, Sharayna, has a multitude of free, fun activities to entertain kids.

Remember we don’t have to dim the light of others to have our own shine brightly. Be the unapologetically star you were born to be and be powerful beyond measure. 

Let’s help our kids be alright!

With gratitude,

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504


NEW CHILDREN’S BOOK COMBATS BULLYING!

FRONT COVER-sm-NoBarnyardBullies copyBe the Star You Are!® is excited to announce the launch of a new children’s picture book series, Stella Bella’s Barnyard Adventures, authored by Executive Director, Cynthia Brian, with proceeds benefiting Be the Star You Are!®. Each book is based on a true story that happened to adopted animals in Cynthia’s menagerie. Debuting in October will be NFT’s related to the series with exclusive experiences and empowerment events.

The animal kingdom is filled with timely and timeless tales that are relatable to humans. The animal family of Stella Bella’s Barnyard Adventures experiences complex encounters that challenge their integrity, individuality, and character while amplifying diverse expressions and original viewpoints to co-exist as a group. The barnyard animals address critical issues facing children including bullying, nature, power struggles, adversity, adoption, homelessness, creativity, justice, health, kindness, ethnicity, and being different through a cultural lens of hope and resolution. With visually rich illustrations, each picture book moves a child to appreciate all animals while learning the lessons the natural world teaches humans.

Back Cover No Barnyard Bullies

Each book is 32 pages peppered with lively conversations between the species. Glorious, colorful animated illustrations of the characters by the talented Jensen Russell bring the prose and poetry dialog to life.  Read more: https://www.lamorindaweekly.com/archive/issue1615/New-childrens-book-addresses-complex-issues-of-kindness-and-inclusivity.html

JensenRussel fairytale photo

Illustrator, Jensen Russell

No Barnyard Bullies follows a pampered piglet who lives in an apartment as she is re-homed to a barnyard filled with happy critters. Thinking that she is the Queen, she bullies the other animals until she is stopped by a tiny bunny who defends a three-legged goat from her attacks. Everyone is equal in Stella Bella’s barnyard where bullies are not tolerated and inclusiveness is paramount .  Advance purchases at a discount available in our online store. https://www.cynthiabrian.com/online-store/No-Barnyard-Bullies-COMING-SOON-PRE-ORDERS-ONLY-AT-A-DISCOUNT-p486474870

baby pig Cookie cyn-first night 3


HELP CONTINUE THE POSITIVE WORKS! DONATE TODAY!BTSYA-Banner-Logo copy


OUR INTERNATIONAL RADIO BROADCASTS!

Be empowered, motivated, energized, informed and amused.

Truthful, heartfelt, and engaging topics and guests!
Both Radio shows

 
 
 
 
LIVE on Wednesdays from 4-5pm PT, be entertained, informed, amused, and educated on StarStyle-Be the Star You Are!. Then be inspired and motivated on

Sundays from 3-4pm PT, it’s Express Yourself! Teen Radio with our Be the Star You Are! star teen hosts and reporters.
 
VISIT https://www.StarStyleRadio.com for our line-up of topics and guests.

SIMPLE WAYS TO HELP!

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.
1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

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2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

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3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

2020 IGIVE logo

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

T-shirts 

BTSYA 3 book series

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4

DIRECT LINKS

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Be Kind and Inclusive! 

Be the Star You Are!

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Kindness is King!

Posted by Cynthia Brian on
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Empowerment
Kindness is King!

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MIRACLE MOMENT®

Kindness is the highest form of intelligence.

Wayne Teasdale

 


A MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CYNTHIA BRIAN

Cynthia Brian-flagstoneSummertime reminds me of a favorite classic Disney film, The Parent Trap, where British actress Hayley Mills played the dual roles of twins Sharon and Susan as she tried to reunite her divorced parents. She sang a catchy song “Let’s Get Together” that I often sing in the shower when the world seems in turmoil. 

I’ve been singing those verses often these days. 

Somehow, people have forgotten how to be kind. Don’t we all remember our mother’s advising us “If you can’t say something kind about someone, don’t say anything at all?” It is hard for me to understand the nasty vitriol that consumes our politics today, dividing families and friends to create foes. 

If you haven’t tuned in to our two upbeat, positive message radio broadcasts, this is the year to start listening. StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!® airs LIVE every Wednesday from 4-5pm PT featuring inspiration, lifestyle information, successperts, and entertainment at https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2206/be-the-star-you-are. On Express Yourself!™, teens talk while the world listens. Uncensored, unedited discussions hosted by amazing BTSYA young people showcasing fascinating guests from around the globe broadcast 3pm PT on Sundays. https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself.  Both programs broadcast on the Voice America Network, the largest radio network in the world, on the Empowerment Channel. It’s our goal at Be the Star You Are!® to encourage and empower you to be your best selves. And get together! You can find more information for both shows at https://www.StarStyleRadio.com.  The radio programs are also available wherever you listen to your podcasts including iTunes, Tunein, Stitcher, IHeartRadio, and Spotify.

Remember that love always wins. Kindness always prevails. Smiles will keep us happy. Love, be kind, and smile on!

Enjoy your summer! Let’s get together…ya, ya, ya! Volunteer to spread kindness and joy!

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504


SUMMER OF KINDNESS

scatter kindess petunias by Karen Kitchel

What better way to end your summer day than knowing you scattered a bit of kindness.

 

Need ideas?  Here are a few:

 

  • Make handmade greeting cards for sick kids – cardsforhospitalizedkids.com
  • Decorate a paper bag and add an item or two each time you shop to donate to a local food bank. Find a food shelter near you – feedingamerica.org/foodbank-results.aspx
  • Plant a small tree and plan to visit it when fully grown
  • Bring a used book to a little free library – littlefreelibrary.org
  • Leave a thank you note in your mailbox addressed to your mail carrier
  • Take treats to your local fire station
  • Just smile at someone 
  • Keep a kindness journal to remember all the wonderful things you did

 

Karen Kitchel who penned two chapters in the book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. www.scatteringkindness.com


WHERE TO FIND MORE KINDNESS! 


2shows

Be the Star You Are!® broadcasts two award-winning programs StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!® and Express Yourself Teen Radio, where you’ll be inspired, motivated, informed, entertained, and awed. They are family-friendly shows where we get together. Check them out at https://www.StarStyleRadio.com.

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expressyourself with Sunday


READ, LEAD, SUCCEED!

MOLLY REQDING TO ALESANALooking for great books for your kids to read this summer? Visit our Book Review site where youth volunteers read books and write first-hand reviews what they like and don’t like. This is a great resource for youth, parents, teacher, guardians, and anyone who wants to encourage reading for children and teens. http://www.btsya.com/book_reviews

Also check out more reviews at our reading partner, The Reading Tub at https://thereadingtub.org/books/be-the-star-you-are/


“To be a leader, you must be a reader!” 


SPREAD KINDNESS!
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Type Title Here SIMPLE WAYS TO HELP!

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.
1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

2020 Amazon smile logo

2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

Giving Assistant Icon 234x60

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

2020 IGIVE logo

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

T-shirts

BTSYA 3 book series

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4



HAPPY SUMMER! BE KIND! LET’S GET TOGETHER! VOLUNTEER!

BTSYA High Res Logo CCI.Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3

PO Box 376
Moraga, California 94556


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Honoring Grads and Dads!

Posted by Cynthia Brian on
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Empowerment
Honoring Grads and Dads!

Abruzzini brothers, david, alice. cyn, cousims.jpeg

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MIRACLE MOMENT®

“A good father is one of the most unsung, unpraised, unnoticed, and yet one of the most valuable assets in our society.”  Billy Graham 


dad-heroA MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CYNTHIA BRIAN

The day I graduated from CAL Berkeley was a momentous occasion. As I walked across the stage in my cap and gown to receive my diploma, the realization that I was the very first person in my family to go to college was history-making. Being farmers, my parents did not have the money to send any child to college.  But I was determined and they encouraged me to find a way to finance the dream. From the time I was eight years old, I raised chickens and sold the eggs, carefully saving every penny to achieve my goal of a university education. Throughout my college years, I worked full time at a variety of jobs to pay for food, books, rent, tuition, and everything necessary to survive. Going to college was the best investment of my life. 

When it came to parents, I hit the golden jackpot. Living on a farm, we didn’t have many material possessions but my parents bestowed so much love and confidence on their five children that we always felt like the richest people in the world. It was my Dad that build the chicken coop so that I could venture on my higher educational ambition. It was my Dad that shined his bald head so that i could confidently look out at the audience as i strolled across that stage and, seeing his bald head know how much I was loved.  It was my Dad that cried when he walked me down the aisle on my wedding day. It was my Dad that upon his deathbed comforted me by saying “My end is your beginning.” My Dad always was and will always be my hero.

Cyn wedding with dad 1975 3

June is the month to celebrate educational milestones from pre-school to graduate schools. It takes work, perseverance, and support to graduate. 

June is also the month to honor the magnificent men in our lives that have nurtured us to be the people we are today.

Congratulations to graduates everywhere and thank you to the fathers who have made so much possible. 

We honor you.

 And remember, every day is a new beginning. Never give up on your dreams!

With gratitude,

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504


Two Teen Poets Honor Dads

Ruhani Chhabra headshot stars orangeRuhani Chhabra and Sharanya Roy are two young volunteers with Be the Star You Are!® that we lovingly call “our resident poets!” They both created a short film with original poetry for the Earth Gratitude Festival and today, share their insights on fatherhood.

Read their complete poems at http://www.btsya.com/resources

A Father’s Love

by Ruhani Chhabra

a father’s love is subtle yet strong,

captured in the nighttime shadows

as he waits for his little girl to come home,

the kitchen clock ticking with the reminder time has passed

since those early days soaked with white sunlight,

when she’d giggle deliriously on his secure shoulders.

he’d take her to soccer practice and sleepovers,

attend recitals that he found less enjoyable than his wife did.

he wiped blood from her knee

when she first learned to ride a bike,

and the wound hurt him more than her.

he was greeted with gleeful cries with his presence,

in the evening when he came home exhausted

but he was never too tired to gather her in his arms.

she didn’t realize it then,

but he was never to remain so strong and unbeatable,

her father was really just a man,

a man in the nighttime shadows,

whose lower back ached from age

and eyes drooped from sleep he didn’t allow;

only the confirmation that his daughter

was safe could propel him into

a relaxed rest.

her father was only a man,

built from his childhood dreams

and shaped by how the world treated him

just like everyone else.

(continued at http://www.btsya.com/resources)

BTSYA volunteer, Ruhani Chhabra is passionate about creative writing and has been exploring her craft since she was very young. At the age of ten, she published her first book, The Karris Family. Since then, she’s been nationally and globally recognized for her short stories, poems, personal essays, and dramatic scripts. Through being a reporter and host at Express Yourself! Teen Radio,  she hopes to become more interactive with people. Her focus is on teen leadership and her segment is titled, Teenship. www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com


My Favorite Superhero

Sharanya-STARSuperheroes are everywhere,

In TV shows, movies, books,

But the world can’t see the superhero who can’t fly,

Jump over buildings,

And read everybody’s mind.

This superhero has a fascination for groceries,

And would buy a house inside of Safeway,

This superhero would sleep and procrastinate,

This superhero only reads weird non-fiction or self-help books,

Which have SAT level vocabulary.

He doesn’t wear capes,

Or a Spandex Suit,

With cool graphics displayed everywhere,

In fact all he wears are jeans and T-shirts,

With a pair of thin-wired glasses set on his face.

His name isn’t a household name which is mentioned all the time,

Nobody knows him with a cool and unique name,

Like “Iron Man” or “Spiderman”,

His real name is quite simple and is often mispronounced,

And his superhero alias is one word with two repeating syllables,

Baba,

Words uttered from a baby’s mouth.

 

He is my favorite superhero because he is always there to save the day,

Whether it is with his very passionately cooked dishes,

Or instant math help,

He is always there to cheer me on,

And even if he physically doesn’t save the nation from doom,

His soul lights up the earth’s very core.

BTSYA volunteer, Sharanya Roy enjoys writing and to her, each sentence has a life of its own. She loves the sound of the keyboard clacking, as well as the scrick of a pencil. In her Express Yourself™ teen radio segment, “The Scribble” Sharanya strives to change how teens look at writing, as writing isn’t just essays, but a vast ocean of new techniques and ideas. She wants to unwrap more methods of writing with other teens, and help writing to be an enjoyable experience for all. www.ExpressYourselfTeenRadio.com

 


OUR FUTURE HEROES

karen kitchell with graduation 2022 - 2 (2)by Karen Kitchel

Graduating from Kindergarten can be one of the first steps to a long journey down the road of kindness.  This was the fifth year as a volunteer at Partnership Academy where I was thrilled to see the expressions of pure joy on these amazing kids and their families.  I’m convinced they will be our future heroes.

Congratulations to all graduates!

Karen Kitchel who penned two chapters in the book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. www.scatteringkindness.com

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MEET OUR NEWEST EXPRESS YOURSELF! TEEN REPORTER

Keerthi Eranivan headshot (1)Keerthi Eraniyan, a budding philosopher who embodies the quintessence of everything and anything. She is a 7th grader from San Ramon, California, whose pastimes include debate, math, writing, and singing. Her ruminations involve the gradual extinction of humans, and she can be seen engulfed in an existential crisis. She relishes debate, the fickle thing that blitzes her fingers and propels her through life at the speed of light. In her segment, Nerd Extraordinaire, Keerthi strives to promulgate and publicize the extravagance of forensic debate and fiction writing and exhibit the world beyond plug and chug speech. She desires to introduce the debate world to listeners in a fascinating, magnificent, new way that manifests the air of debate, thick with spontaneous comebacks and the pure thrill of it.

·      Listen to her first broadcast at Voice America Network, Empowerment Channel: https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/137873/summer-plans


HELP CONTINUE THE POSITIVE WORKS! DONATE TODAY!BTSYA-Banner-Logo copy


Type Title Here

OUR INTERNATIONAL RADIO BROADCASTS!

Both Radio showsBe empowered, motivated, energized, informed and amused.

Truthful, heartfelt, and engaging topics and guests!
LIVE on Wednesdays from 4-5pm PT, be entertained, informed, amused, and educated on StarStyle-Be the Star You Are!. Then be inspired and motivated on

Sundays from 3-4pm PT, it’s Express Yourself! Teen Radio with our Be the Star You Are! star teen hosts and reporters.
 
VISIT https://www.StarStyleRadio.com for our line-up of topics and guests.

SIMPLE WAYS TO HELP!

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.
1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

2020 Amazon smile logo

2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

Giving Assistant Icon 234x60

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

2020 IGIVE logo

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

T-shirts

BTSYA 3 book series

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4



HAPPY FATHER’S TO THE FABULOUS DADS

HEATHERJUSTIN


CONGRATS GRADS! WAY TO GO!

graduation KIDSBTSYA High Res.2019logo RLS


Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3

PO Box 376
Moraga, California 94556


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Standing for Freedom and Support of Ukraine

Posted by rstapholz on
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Empowerment
Standing for Freedom and Support of Ukraine

 

 

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SUPPORT FREEDOM! STAND WITH UKRAINE!
 
A MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CYNTHIA BRIAN

 

For several weeks now, we have witnessed a deranged madman targeting innocent civilians in their homes, schools, hospitals, and shelters in an effort to illegally and forcefully conquer the sovereign nation of Ukraine. All but a handful of countries have denounced the former KGB operative, Putin, in his mission to scorch the earth. Zelensky, the President of Ukraine is the hero leading his country to fight for freedom, never giving up and never giving in. The Russian people are being lied to while Ukraine is the shield of Europe.

Pre-1991, I spent two months in a study program designed to work with the artistic community behind “The Iron Curtain”. The trip turned out not to be a lesson in freedom of expression as I soon found out, but a study of manipulation and indoctrination. My fantasy of artists working in harmony and with a free spirit was quickly crushed. We went to the museums, circuses, theater, ballet, and gymnastic competitions, but the happy exchange of artistic ideas was nonexistent. The only beauty I witnessed was pre-1917. The cities were gray, the sky was gray, the clothing was gray, the sugary tea was gray. Life was dismal and gray. People cued in long lines for everything. Everyone appeared forlorn and beaten down. It appeared that anything pleasurable was forbidden to the common citizen. Gray seemed to be the national color in the USSR, with an occasional welcome flash of a fuchsia babushka.

After two months behind the “Iron Curtain,” I knew how appropriate the name was. It was impenetrable. Human emotions and ambitions were crushed in the name of an ideal. Life might have been egalitarian, but it was miserable, merely existence. Citizens performed the jobs they were assigned at preset wages and could not move around or leave the country.

America is not perfect – no country is. America is a work-in-progress, a country constantly struggling to balance rights with responsibilities and to maintain a level of freedom and justice for all. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to be born in a land that allows me the ability to travel the world, witnessing the cultures and lifestyles of other nations, and then to return to a country that welcomes my expression. Yes, I am proud to be an American!

And I am proud to stand in solidarity with the Ukrainian people . The world cannot allow the war criminal Putin to return any part of the world to the days of the Iron Curtain.  Freedom is never free. We must fight for it.

Support and STAND in Solidarity with Ukraine.

Sending strength to our friends flying yellow and blue.

Praying for peace,

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504

READ

Boots on the Ground with blooms for the brave.  Spring into solidarity with Ukraine by planting or arranging flowers in colors of yellow and blue. http://www.lamorindaweekly.com/archive/issue1602/Digging-Deep-with-Goddess-Gardener-Cynthia-Brian-Boots-on-the-ground.html

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SPOTLIGHT ON NEW TEEN REPORTER, KEVIN CHOO

Kevin Choo is a sophomore at Amador Valley High School. His favorite subjects are Math, Computer Science, and Biology. In addition, he enjoys playing badminton and reading books. He speaks Korean, English, and French. He was taught the first two from birth since he is of Korean descent but was born in the U.S.A., while the last is from an elective class he is taking. He has lived in Pleasanton, California his entire life but has traveled to several places for summer vacations, with his personal favorite being Switzerland. He is relatively introverted and turtle-like, so unless he is contacted or prodded first, he tends to be holed up in the shell he calls his room. His favorite type of day is when it’s raining, and he is free for the entire day. That way, he can stay cozy in his room, reading a good book or watching YouTube while listening to the pattering of the rain. He is also fairly absent-minded or air-headed most of the time, but very efficient when he puts his mind to something.| His segment on Express Yourself is A.I. and Us, about the ramifications of artificial intelligence.

Listen to his first broadcast https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/136439/be-a-volunteer

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FREE VIRTUAL WONDERS MAGIC SHOW on April 23, NOON PT

Direct from the Emerald Isle, one of Ireland’s premiere professional magicians, Simon Ryan, will perform an interactive FREE virtual magic show for all ages. You’ll be entertained with card tricks, comedy, and mind reading fun.  FREE, virtually, on Zoom. Be part of the fun. Tell your friends and family to sign up now! One Day Only!

Info and Register for FREE

Email registration: thestarsworkshop@gmail.com 

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TEEN RADIO CREATOR/PRODUCER, CYNTHIA BRIAN, NAMED UNSUNG HERO

Producing a successful radio broadcast is time-intensive, challenging work. The editors of Podcast Magazine chose 22 podcast and radio professionals to honor as Unsung Heroes in its March 2022 issue and Voice American Network veteran producer and host, Cynthia Brian, is among those being celebrated. Read about the Unsung Heroeshttps://podcastmagazine.com/22-unsung-heroes-in-podcasting

See Press Pass for details: https://blog.voiceamerica.com/2022/03/07/teen-radio-creator-producer-cynthia-brian-named-unsung-hero-by-podcast-magazine/

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SIMPLE WAYS TO HELP!

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.

1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

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2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

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6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4

`DIRECT LINKS

Positive Results: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/positive-results

About Us: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/about_us

Programs: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/programs

How to Help: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/how-to-help

Blog: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/blog-1

Events: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/events

Contact us: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/contact

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MIRACLE MOMENT®

 

“I’m fed up with old men dreaming up wars for young men to die in.”  George S. McGovern

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BTSYA HONORED AS TOP NONPROFIT

Congratulations! Be The Star You Are Inc has earned a spot on the 2022 Top-Rated Nonprofit List from Great Nonprofits and is one of the first charities to win this award this year.  The community has shared their inspiring stories about the work of Be the Star You Are!®. Thank you for this honor. https://greatnonprofits.org/org/be-the-star-you-are-inc

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FREE WRITING WORKSHOP

Writing With the Stars is a FREE online creative writing workshop for kids ages 9-14 hosted by Express Yourself! Teen Radio Host Ruhani Chhabra.

Registration and info
https://www.bethestaryouare.org/writing-with-the-stars-virtual-workshop

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FREEDOM FOR UKRAINE!

Be the Star You Are! ® 501 c3 charity

PO BOX 376

Moraga, Ca. 94556

www.BetheStarYouAre.org

www.BTSYA.org

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www.BetheStarYourAre.org

 

www.BTSYA.org

 

Teen Radio Creator/Producer, Cynthia Brian, Named UnSung Hero by Podcast Magazine

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Empowerment
Teen Radio Creator/Producer, Cynthia Brian, Named UnSung Hero by Podcast Magazine

22unsung hero Cynthia.jpg

Producing a successful radio broadcast is time-intensive, challenging work. The editors of Podcast Magazine chose 22 podcast and radio professionals to honor as Unsung Heroes in its March 2022 issue and Voice American Network veteran producer and host, Cynthia Brian, is among those being celebrated. Read about the Unsung Heroes: https://podcastmagazine.com/22-unsung-heroes-in-podcasting

Besides producing and hosting her weekly LIVE lifestyle broadcast, StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!®, in 2011, through her company, StarStyle® Productions, LLC, Cynthia Brian launched a broadcast, Express Yourself!™ for teens, by teens, and with teens, completely unedited and uncensored under the auspices of Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3 charity. She began by coaching five teens to be reporters and has now coached over fifty adolescents between the ages of 12-19 to be communicators and journalists. Cynthia produces every show, books the guests, coaches the teens to improve their performances, does the publicity, and she does it all without a salary…for FREE!

Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio is now in its eleventh year and has broadcast 620 podcasts. Cynthia believes in the voices and opinions of young people as the future of our world. Her hosts and reporters are asked to make a list of the subjects that interest them, then she finds the guests that will inspire and motivate the teens and listeners. Guests include a global roster of artists, authors, actors, celebrities, sports figures, Olympians, teachers, doctors, entrepreneurs, scientists, innovators, teens, and others making a difference. Her goal is to find permanent sponsorship and grants to keep this empowering, positive message program on the air.

Cynthia credits her team of professionals at the Voice America Network for making both programs sound and look first-rate. “After almost two decades broadcasting on the Voice America Network, we are one happy, dedicated family and I share this accolade with them,” exclaims Cynthia. With Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio, Cynthia’s goal is to give teens a voice so that they can speak up, speak out, and express themselves.

 

Express Yourself! airs every Sunday from 3-4pm PT on the Voice America Network, Empowerment Channel. https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself

 

StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!® airs LIVE every Wednesday 4-5pm PT on the Voice America Network, Empowerment Channel. https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2206/be-the-star-you-are

For more information about both broadcasts, visit https://www.StarStyleRadio.com

For information about Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3 charity, visit https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

cynthia teen radio - 2.jpeghttps://www.CynthiaBrian.com

`WRITING WITH THE STARS! FREE Virtual Writing Workshop for Ages 9-12

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Empowerment
`WRITING WITH THE STARS! FREE Virtual Writing Workshop for Ages 9-12

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WRITING WITH THE STARS!  yellow starVIRTUAL WRITING WORKSHOP FOR AGES 9-14


FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! FREE! 



Are you a young person who wants to learn to be a writer or author? Writing With the Stars is a FREE online creative writing workshop for kids ages 9-14 hosted by Express Yourself! Teen Radio Host Ruhani Chhabra. 

Writing With the Stars will feature a fun and engaging curriculum that encourages young writers to pursue their imaginative ideas and expertly convey them on paper:

DETAILS:

Classes will be held biweekly on Saturdays. All classes are FREE of charge!

Each week will have a different lesson, either centering on poetry, fiction, creative

nonfiction, personal narratives, etc.

Children learn different styles and genres. They will learn to read our work out loud,

receive critique, and give it as well.

Tips and tricks on how to structure novel-writing and short stories.

Working on expanding vocabulary.

Diverse prompts to get creative juices flowing

DATES for CLASSES

For 9- 11 year old’s

Dates: Saturdays-March 12, March 26, April  9, April 23

Times: 10-11 am

For 12-14 year old’s

Dates: Saturdays-March 5, March 19, April 2, April 16

Times: 10-11:30 am

To Register for Free, Email: thestarsworkshop@gmail.com   

Information: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/writing-with-the-stars-virtual-workshop

 


About the Instructor, Ruhani Chhabra

Ruhani Chhabra headshot pink 2Ruhani Chhabra is a sixteen-year-old girl from the Bay Area. She is passionate about creative writing and has been exploring her craft since she was very young. At the age of ten, she published her first book, The Karris Family. Since then, she’s been nationally and globally recognized for her short stories, poems, personal essays, and dramatic scripts. She hopes to expand her numerous talents by studying in New York City when she’s older. Through being a reporter at Express Yourself!, she hopes to become more interactive with people, a skill she’ll use when she teaches one day. Her focus is on teen leadership and her segment is titled, Teenship. Ruhani recently won one of eight awards out of the 11,000 global submissions in the New York Times 3rd Annual Personal Narrative Essay Contest. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/20/learning/the-winners-of-our-3rd-annual-personal-narrative-essay-contest-for-students.html

To Register for Free, Email: thestarsworkshop@gmail.com   

Information: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/writing-with-the-stars-virtual-workshop

 

Ages 12-14 CLASSES BEGIN THIS SATURDAY, MARCH 5th

To Register for Free, Email: thestarsworkshop@gmail.com   


 To be a writer, you must be a reader! 

“To be a leader, you must be a reader. 
Read, lead, succeed! 
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Brought to you by Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3
PO Box 376
Moraga, California 94556

Share the Love!

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Empowerment
Share the Love!

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MIRACLE MOMENT®

“I have an everyday religion that works for me. Love yourself first and everything else falls into line.” Lucille Ball

 



A MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CYNTHIA BRIAN 
Cynthia Brian-pearlsHappy Valentine’s Day! February is the month of love and I hope you have plenty in your life. Lucille Ball has it right. Love yourself first.

Here at Be the Star You Are!®, the love is flowing. We are thrilled and proud of the accomplishments of our volunteers. One of our teen radio hosts, Ruhani Chhabra recently was one of eight winners out of 11,000 international submissions in the New York Times Personal Essay contest. We are also welcoming new teen reporters to Express Yourself! Radio, giving youth a voice. Two of them are profiled below. And under the auspices of Be the Star You Are!®, award-winning writer, Ruhani Chhabra is launching a FREE writing workshop for kids ages 9-14. Make sure to check out the info and sign up immediately as classes start the first Saturday in March.

We are also gearing up for Earth Day with three videos submitted to the Earth Gratitude international Festival to be held the weekend of April 22. Stay tuned for more info.

And since we know that you want to pamper yourself and perhaps a loved one on this special day, we’ll make this newsletter short and sweet.

Enjoy some chocolate, champagne, and plenty of virtual hugs.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all and Happy Birthday to all who celebrate in this love month.

May Cupid’s amour arrow find you.

Love always,

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504

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CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR AWARD-WINNING TEEN WRITER

The New York Times announced that Be the Star You Are! volunteer and host of Express Yourself!, Ruhani Chhabra, was one of eight teens out of 11,000 worldwide submissions to win

Ruhani Chhabra headshotfor her essay, T.S.A. and Cinnamon Buns, in the their 3rd Annual Personal Narrative Essay Contest. Read the essay at http://www.btsya.com/resources.

BRAVO to Ruhani for her hard work and creativity. We are so proud of her.

Ruhani’s NY TIMES article:

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/20/learning/the-winners-of-our-3rd-annual-personal-narrative-essay-contest-for-students.html#link-57a860d2

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/20/learning/the-winners-of-our-3rd-annual-personal-narrative-essay-contest-for-students.html

Ruhani will be teaching, Writing with the Stars, a FREE Virtual Writing Workshop for ages 9-14 starting in March through an outreach program of Be the Star You Are!®. Read below and REGISTER ASAP at thestarsworkshop@gmail.com 

About Ruhani:

Ruhani Chhabra is a sixteen-year-old girl from the Bay Area. She is passionate about creative writing and has been exploring her craft since she was very young. At the age of ten, she published her first book, The Karris Family. Since then, she’s been nationally and globally recognized for her short stories, poems, personal essays, and dramatic scripts. She hopes to expand her numerous talents by studying in New York City when she’s older. Through being a reporter at Express Yourself!, she hopes to become more interactive with people, a skill she’ll use when she teaches one day. Her focus is on teen leadership and her segment is titled, Teenship. Ruhani recently won one of eight awards out of the 11,000 global submissions in the New York Times 3rd Annual Personal Narrative Essay Contest. https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/20/learning/the-winners-of-our-3rd-annual-personal-narrative-essay-contest-for-students.html


FREE VIRTUAL WORKSHOP: WRITING WITH THE STARS

BTSYA High Res.2019logo RLSAre you a young person who wants to learn to be a writer or author? Writing With the Stars is a FREE online creative writing workshop for kids ages 9-14 hosted by Express Yourself! Teen Radio Host Ruhani Chhabra.

Writing With the Stars will feature a fun and engaging curriculum that encourages young writers to pursue their imaginative ideas and expertly convey them on paper:

DETAILS:

Classes will be held biweekly on Saturdays. All classes are FREE of charge!

Each week will have a different lesson, either centering on poetry, fiction, creative

nonfiction, personal narratives, etc.

Children learn different styles and genres. They will learn to read our work out loud,

receive critique, and give it as well.

Tips and tricks on how to structure novel-writing and short stories.

Working on expanding vocabulary.

Diverse prompts to get creative juices flowing

DATES for CLASSES

For 9- 11 year olds

Dates: Saturdays-March 12, March 26, April  9, April 23

Times: 10-11 am

For 12-14 year old’s

Dates: Saturdays-March 5, March 19, April 2, April 16

Times: 10-11:30 am

To Register for Free, Email: thestarsworkshop@gmail.com   

Information: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/writing-with-the-stars-virtual-workshop


SPOTLIGHT on TWO NEW FEBRUARY REPORTERS

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This month of February, Be the Star You Are!® launches the segments of two new radio reporters, Hannah Sahota and Kirpa Gill. We welcome these outstanding teens to our STAR Galaxy.

Listen to Express Yourself! Teen Radio on Sundays 3pm PT

Hannah Sahota: Empowerment and Equality

Hannah Sahoto headshot 4Hannah Sahota is a junior at Turlock High School who is active both in and out of the classroom. As the first ladder player on the THS Varsity Tennis Team, she takes that competitive nature to campus, being a leader within the Science Olympiad and Math Clubs representing Turlock in statewide competitions. In her free time, Hannah has enjoyed playing the piano for the last nine years.

She is extremely passionate about promoting gender equality and youth empowerment through education and literature. To accomplish this, Hannah has tutored a diverse group of students for the last five years through Sundar S.T.E.A.M Academy. Through her experiences tutoring, Hannah has begun “Hannah’s Project”, a charitable organization dedicated to providing young girls with a platform to pursue an interest in STEM subjects.

After listening to the broadcasts and shows on Express Yourself! Teen Radio, Hannah was fascinated with the informative and engaging content written and produced by teens like herself. Through her platform, she hopes to educate her peers with a diverse and relevant array of discussion topics. Her segment is called Empowerment and Equality. Listen to her first program all about Valentine’s Day at https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/135835/valentines-day-love-fest.

Kirpa Gill: Pet Prescription

kirpa gill

Kirpa Gill, a sixth grader at Julien Elementary School in the GATE program, loves to spend her free time with her German Shepherd, Simba.  Kirpa is very compassionate about animals and her future career goal is to become a veterinarian, and provide free services to rescue animals.   Her love for music is expressed through the piano, which she has been playing for the last 3 years.  Kirpa has been a member of the Girl Scouts and was promoted to a Cadette last year.   She has presented great leadership and academic skills and was rewarded Rotary  Student of the Month for her school.  She is also a two-time gold-medal winner for the county spelling bee.  After observing her brother host for “Express Yourself Teen Radio” Kirpa is ecstatic about becoming a reporter on “Express “and being able to reach out and make a difference.  Her segment is called Pet Prescription and you can tune in to her first segment will air on February 20th @ 3pm Pt. https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself


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SIMPLE WAYS TO HELP!

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.
1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

2020 Amazon smile logo

2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

Giving Assistant Icon 234x60

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

2020 IGIVE logo

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

T-shirts

BTSYA 3 book series

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4



FAM_ValentinesDay_Email_2022_banner 4


2022 candid-seal-platinum-pngSupport Be the Star You Are! with Confidence. We have a 2022 Platinum Seal of Transparency from Candid!

 
Be the Star You Are! ® 501 c3 charity
PO BOX 376
Moraga, Ca. 94556
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Lead with Empathy, Now and Always

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Empowerment
Lead with Empathy, Now and Always

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MIRACLE MOMENT®

“Once the game is over, the king and the pawn go back into the same box.”

~ Italian Proverb


A MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CYNTHIA BRIAN

cynthia- Halloween garden (1)In the past few years, global warming and climate change have enhanced the number of natural disasters. Since the tragedy of 9/11, 2001, Be the Star You Are!® has shipped books and other resources to shelters and organizations in the United States to support survivors offering hope and healing. In 2021, natural disasters were more violent and deadly causing thousands to flee their homes.

Because we care, we share.

Normally volunteers get together to sort, pack, box, load, and ship resources. Because of the pandemic and the necessity for social distancing, I decided to go it alone this year. Books are heavy.

After shipping over a dozen cases to various states, I was working to load another twenty boxes when something snapped in my back and I fell to my knees in acute pain. I was not able to stand or walk. After two days, crawling became my method to get from my bed to the bathroom. It’s been two weeks since the injury and I am finally more upright like a homo sapien.

I’ve always thought that I’m an empathic individual, but being so extremely debilitated provided another level for understanding the feelings of others. Leading with empathy means we need to walk in someone else’s boots, to see their perspective, and attempt to understand. Divisiveness, racism, misinformation, misogyny, religious differences, conspiracy theories, untruths, and political polarization are leading us down a rabbit-hole of separation. We are the United States of America, not the Divided States of America. The Miracle Moment® quote for today illustrates the power of equality. Whether we are prince or pauper, president or farm laborer, when life is over, we all return to dust.

My entreaty to everyone is to care for yourself and for one another. Be kind. Be inclusive. We never know what struggles another person is facing.

Lifting nearly 3/4 of a ton of books in a few hours alone was not the smart move on my part. I will be more careful in the future and give my back a break. The good news is that all the resources have now been delivered and hopefully will provide happy holidays for a few thousand individuals so that they can lead with empathy.

Thanks for your ongoing support!

Wishing you health and a happy haunted Halloween.

TRICK or TREAT!!!

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504


PEAR FESTIVAL GRATITUDE

2021 Pear Festival-covid-masks downA big round of applause to the Be the Star You Are!® volunteers who worked at the Be the Star You Are!® booth at the Pear and Wine Festival. Although we didn’t garner many donations, we helped children craft and decorate masks to protect them during the pandemic, read them stories, and gave each child a brand new copy of the beautiful 10th anniversary book, The Adventures of Blue Ocean Bob. Getting together for the first time since 2019 was a bonus! Everyone wore a mask and adhered to protocols. Thank you to all to visited and to our sponsors: The Lamorinda Weekly Newspaper (www.lamorindaweekly.com), Dr. Brian Sheaff Family Dentistry ( https://www.drsheaffdentistry.com) and MBJesse Painting (www.MBJessee.com) and to Brooks Olbrys author of the book (https://www.blueoceanbob.com).

thank you sponsors 2 mask making

Read about Be the Star You Are!®: https://www.lamorindaweekly.com/archive/issue1517/Children-create-crafty-masks-during-annual-Pear–and–Wine-Festival.html

2021 Pear Festival-covid


TAKE TIME TO NOTICE

 
AWESOMEby Karen Kitchel

Has anyone ever told you that you are awesome?  If so, how did it make you feel? Leaving little positive messages, either verbal or written, can turn someone’s day around. No need to wait for a major accomplishment.  Things like making a good cup of coffee can also be awesome.  All it takes is time to notice.

And YOU are awesome!

Karen Kitchel who penned two chapters in the book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. www.scatteringkindness.com


MEET OUR NEWEST EXPRESS YOURSELF TEEN RADIO REPORTER

&
sharanyaphoto-headphonesSharanya Roy is a 7th grader in Gale Ranch Middle School. She loves to swim, play the piano, and make amusing jokes with her friends. Apart from planning her goofy schemes, Sharanya really enjoys writing. She finds that each sentence has a life of its own, and she loves the sound of the keyboard clacking, as well as the scrick of a pencil. In her radio show, Sharanya hopes to change how teens look at writing, as writing doesn’t JUST consist of essays for school, it is a lot more. In Sharanya’s segment, “The Scribble”, she wants to share new methods of writing, and how writing can be a part of every teen’s life. https://www.ExpressTyourselfTeenRadio.com

Listen to her recite an original poem that combines her love of writing with genetics.

https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/133975/biology-and-genetics

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DREAMS DO COME TRUE!

Maggie DiGiovannipictureBy Maggie DiGiovanni

Few go from a ten-year-old writing her first story and basking in her mother’s praise to the realization of her life’s dream of writing for a newspaper. I am one of those few. How did it happen?

Writing every day, listening to real authors when they critiqued my work and learning to self-edit helped enormously. In the middle of this learning curve, I opted to enter a contest put out by Cynthia Brian and Be the Star You Are!® charity with a story aimed at young people. The multi-author book, Be the Star You Are for Teens, gave advice from building skills to keeping a good attitude. The chapters wrote in plain, but gentle language reaching out to the hearts and minds of young people.

My offering on Responsibility began with the dubious sentence, ‘Mama was a drug dealer.’ It drew the reader’s attention. An explanation followed that Mama’s drugs included her kids being drug to church, drug into her arms for hugs, drug to the shed if we misbehaved.

Winning that contest lifted my confidence so that when a friend asked my assistance in writing a blog for seniors, I agreed. The initial title of ‘Frugal Florida Seniors,’ drew few readers.  attention, we changed the title to ‘Sexy, Sassy Seniors.’  Readership increased and they stayed.

From there I moved on to offering stories to magazines and writing letters to the editors of newspapers. Magazines like the stories and my letters to the editor appear regularly.

The last step came when a library volunteer told me the Autauga Elmore Newspaper wanted a reporter for our hometown. The owner hired me. It has been a long trek, but without that contest, it might never have come to fruition. Thank you for the encouragement, Cynthia.

Currently Maggie DiGiovanni is an author, newspaper reporter, and blog manager.  Maggie penned the chapter, The Gift of Responsibility in Be the Star You Are!® for Teens. Previously, she was human resources director, purchasing manager and resort office manager. She is the proud mother of two. sexysassyseniors.com (Blog site)https://elmoreautauganews.com/

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HOLIDAYS ARE COMING-GIVE BOOKS AS GIFTS!

Cynthia Brian books bannerIn honor of our 20th anniversary since being on the first New York Times best seller list, first edition, autographed books are discounted in a special sale with proceeds benefitting Be the Star You Are!® You will also receive extra goodies and FREE music CD with your purchase when you buy from the website. Stock up now! http://starstylestore.net


OPERATION DISASTER RELIEF

The 2021 natural disasters continue to climb. Hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, tornados, and fires are more ferocious and deadly causing thousands to flee their homes. Global warming and climate change are causing extreme weather conditions that have never been seen before. Throughout 2020, Be the Star You Are!® concentrated disaster relief on helping individuals who were out of work survive during the pandemic. We now turn our assistance back to helping survivors of these major natural disasters happening throughout the United States. Be the Star You Are!® will be providing books and other materials to shelters and organizations in need. If you’d like to donate, please do so at our website, https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org. If your organization or shelter is in need of our resources to supply to survivors of a disaster, please email us at info@BetheStarYouAre.org.

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SHOP and GIVE!

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.

1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

2020 Amazon smile logo

2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

Giving Assistant Icon 234x60

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

2020 IGIVE logo

5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

T-shirts

BTSYA 3 book series

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4


EDU_TAINMENT WITH BE THE STAR YOU ARE! RADIO

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LIVE on Wednesdays from 4-5pm PT, be entertained, informed, amused, and educated on StarStyle-Be the Star You Are!. Then be inspired and motivated on

Sundays from 3-4pm PT, it’s Express Yourself! Teen Radio with our Be the Star You Are! star teen hosts and reporters.
 
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You’ll meet authors, actors, artists, activists, musicians, poets, scientists, educators, and other creatives. Enjoy our upbeat, authentic, and fun radio parties on the Voice America Network Empowerment Channel or wherever you like to listen. 
Visit https://www.StarStyleRadio.com for our line-up of guests.
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DIRECT LINKS


 Have a safe and fun hallowed eve! Happy Halloween! Thanks for being part of our STAR family!

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LEAD WITH EMPATHY! CARE ABOUT YOURSELF and OTHERS! 


Contact Information: Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3, PO Box 376, Moraga, Ca. 94556

Spring Renewal from Be the Star You Are!®

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Spring Renewal from Be the Star You Are!®
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Spring Renewal
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MIRACLE MOMENT®

“If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.”

Anne Bradstreet

1612-1672, Poet


A MESSAGE FROM FOUNDER/

cyn-wisteria leaningSpring brings a rebirth of excitement, expectation, and anticipation after more than a year of pandemic, lock-down, and isolation. Hopefully you have been vaccinated or will be soon as we climb out of this winter of despair.

Be the Star You Are!® will be operating virtually until such time that the “all clear” is given. We continue to host our weekly radio broadcasts, book reviewers are reading, writing, and getting published through our literacy partner, The Reading Tub, and we continue our outreach programs to help Americans affected by the shut-downs and disasters.

2021 may become the 3rd driest year in California history. We need to be prepared. Other parts of the country will have floods, tornadoes, and hurricanes. A resource for homeowners to save time and money preparing their homes for future weather-related natural disasters can be viewed here:

https://www.reviews.com/insurance/homeowners/how-to-protect-your-home-from-extreme-weather/

The past year has been challenging especially for parents and children, especially in areas where schools were closed and everyone was subjected to online-learning. A big shout-out of gratitude to all the teachers who pivoted to work via ZOOM or other platforms to continue the education of our world’s young.

We are happy to share a parent’s resource from safety.comon How to Talk to Your Kids About the News and Protect their Sense of Safety. A recent Safety.com survey reports that “More than three-fourths of parents claim at least one event in the past year has impacted their child(ren)’s sense of safety.”

The survey found that kids were exposed to distressing topics in several ways. Despite the fact that TV, the internet, and other news access were the top sources causing fear, the survey also uncovered that 90% of parents with children under 18 are aware of the digital content their children are consuming.  This guide can help parents manage these difficult conversations with a series of questions and resources included. You can view it here:

https://www.safety.com/how-to-talk-to-your-kids-about-the-news-and-protect-their-sense-of-safety/

If you are a gardener, you have probably been battling weeds as I have in my landscape. You may enjoy reading about preparing your garden for spring here: https://www.lamorindaweekly.com/archive/issue1504/Digging-Deep-with-Goddess-Gardener-Cynthia-Brian-Weeds-weeds-and-more-weeds.html

Finally, Be the Star You Are!® is extremely proud of our teen volunteer and Express Yourself! radio host, Diya Hituvalli, who developed a FREE app, KeepMeSafe, to keep women safe and has been recognized with awards both internationally and nationally. You can read more about her below and listen to the radio interview where she talks about her journey, motivation, and challenges in creating this app. https://www.voiceamerica.com/episode/130853/meditations-for-the-soul-and-keepmesafe-app

April is Global Volunteer Month. We invite you to get involved with Be the Star You Are!® or other charities that you believe in. Make sure to continue making donations, no matter how small, as charities can not function without the monetary contributions of those who are able to give.  DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504

Mother’s Day is around the corner so make a donation in honor of the great women who do so much for so many.

Wishing you a healthy, happy springtime. Thank you for being part of our Be the Star You Are!® galaxy.

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504

Cyn Covid19 Vaccine


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CONGRATULATIONS to BE THE STAR YOU ARE! NAMED a 2021 TOP NONPROFIT

2021-top-rated-awards-badge-Thanks to our volunteers, supporters, donors, and community Be the Star You Are!® is one of the first charities of 2021 to be named a TOP NON PROFIT. Congratulations to all,. Read reviews and witness what people are saying about BTSYA!  https://greatnonprofits.org/org/be-the-star-you-are-inc

Be the Star You Are!® has also earned the Platinum Seal of Transparency from Guidestar/Candid: https://www.guidestar.org/profile/94-3333882

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TEEN DIYA HITUVALLI CREATES APP, KEEPMESAFE

diya hituvalli 2021Be the Star You Are!® salutes our teen volunteer and Express Yourself!® radio reporter and host, Diya Hituvalli for developing an award-winning app. KeepMeSafe is a women’s safety app that aims to prevent sexual assault through voice recognition and location tracking. With KeepMeSafe, users can trigger a voice-activated  alarm to scare off attackers, send an emergency text to 911 with their location when they say the key word “Help”, anonymously report sexual assault to RAINN), America’s national sexual assault hotline, and browse resources to learn safety tips, self defense techniques, and more. It has received recognition as the Congressional App Challenge winner for District 19, a Technovation U.S. Semifinalist, and has been featured on ABC as well as several other stations nationally! Check it out on the App Store for free! www.keepmesafecorp.org

Instagram: @keepmesafeapp

The ABC7 Bay Area article and video:

https://abc7.com/10502915/

Diya's Keep Me Safe app


UNEXPECTED JOY-A SWAN STORY

swans - lt photoAn unexpected surprise came our way early Saturday morning when a pair of trumpeter swans appeared on the little lake behind our home.  For more than thirty years, we’ve watched geese, ducks, and colorful birds appear out our window.  Swans we saw in books.

Before long, neighbors appeared lakeside, and wide-eyed children couldn’t comprehend what they were witnessing. Photos aimed at capturing this phenomenon could not totally grasp the feelings of this incredible happening. For almost an hour, we watched these amazing creatures glide across the water and eventually take flight.

In doing a bit of research, we discovered this pair probably mated for life. In the 1930s, fewer than 100 trumpeter swans remained south of Canada. More recent efforts have focused on reintroducing the species to areas thought to be part of the former breeding range which includes Minnesota.  In 2015, an estimated 17,000 trumpeter swans were spotted during the nesting season. In November and December, most swans that nest in the USA, go south to spend winters in milder climates,

These majestic birds, which fly at speeds of 50-60 mph, stretch to six feet in length and weigh more than 25 pounds. Pairs are formed when they reach about three years old.  Their young can swim when less than one day old but are not capable of flight for 3-4 months.  The oldest known trumpeter swan is said to be a female who lived to be 32 years old in Wisconsin.

Why did this elegant pair come to visit us and where did they go?  That’s part of life’s mystery in never knowing what joys tomorrow might bring.

Karen Kitchel who penned two chapters in the book, Be the Star You Are! Millennials to Boomers Celebrating Gifts of Positive Voices in a Changing Digital World, is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. (Photo by Larry Teckenbrock) www.scatteringkindness.com


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SHOPPING?

We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.

1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

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2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

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3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

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5. Buy “Read, Lead, Succeed” black tanks and books at StarStyle® Store: http://www.starstylestore.net/

T-shirts

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6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4


REJOICE FOR SPRING!

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Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3

PO Box 376
Moraga, California 94556

https://www.BetheStarYouare.org


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EDU_TAINMENT WITH BE THE STAR YOU ARE! RADIO

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LIVE on Wednesdays from 4-5pm PT, be entertained, informed, amused, and educated on StarStyle-Be the Star You Are!. Then be inspired and motivated on

Sundays from 3-4pm PT, it’s Express Yourself! Teen Radio with our Be the Star You Are! star teen hosts and reporters.
 
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You’ll meet authors, actors, artists, activists, musicians, poets, scientists, educators, and other creatives. Enjoy our upbeat, authentic, and fun radio parties on the Voice America Network Empowerment Channel or wherever you like to listen. 
Visit https://www.StarStyleRadio.com for our line-up of guests.
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DIRECT LINKS


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Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3
PO Box 376
Moraga, California 94556
US

Thanksgiving is EVERYDAY!

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Empowerment
Thanksgiving is EVERYDAY!

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MIRACLE MOMENT®

 

“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others.” Cicero

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 MESSAGE FROM CYNTHIA BRIAN, Founder/Executive Director

2020 has been a year of overwhelming challenges.  Here in America, a land of great abundance, we are weathering enormous unemployment, social unrest, political disparity, and the devastating effects of the pandemic. As I write this, the CDC announced that over one million new cases occurred in the past seven days. The death toll is now at 256,000 and rising. My heart goes out to all of those who have lost loved ones during this terrible crisis.

 

The best way to stay safe this Thanksgiving is to celebrate only with those you live with. Protect yourself and others from Covid-19 by staying home. Make health a priority over parties.

Being human means that all of us, regardless of race, religion, economics, politics, or sex, will always have difficult times to overcome. No matter what we endure, we need to express gratitude for what we have, not what we don’t. With so much loss, it is tough to be positive, yet even more necessary to give thanks daily. Gratitude exalts the heart and feeds the soul.

 

Be the Star You Are!® continues its outreach programs virtually. Both of our radio broadcasts, StarStyle®-Be the Star You Are!® and Express Yourself!™ Teen Radio, bring you authors, artists, actors, musicians, and other creatives who are struggling during this pandemic. Make sure to tune in and support their work. You may find our line-up of remarkable guests at https://www.StarStyleRadio.com

We have beautiful new books available to donate through our holiday distribution program. If your organization, shelter, church, hospital, or other group would like to apply to receive books, please email me for guidelines. Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

Tuesday, December 1st is Giving Tuesday. Created in 2012, Giving Tuesday is a day dedicated to inspiring millions of people to give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity. If there ever was a year when donations are necessary, this is it. If you are in a position to donate, please go to https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504 No donation is too small or too big. Help us continue our vital programs in 2021.

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This will be the first year in my life that I will only be celebrating Thanksgiving with one other person, my husband. The toasts and prayers will be for health, peace, unity, decency, and love for our global community.

My sincerest wishes to you for a healthy and happy day of Thanksgiving. Take a walk outdoors, inhale the fresh fall air, and experience the solace of nature.

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I am grateful for you and your dedication to make this world a better place.

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Stay joyful and give thanks for what you have.

 

“Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”    Charles Dickens, 1812-1870, Novelist

Blessings, grace, and peace.

 

Cynthia Brian

Founder/Executive Director

Be the Star You Are!®

PO Box 376

Moraga, California 94556

Cynthia@BetheStarYouAre.org

https://www.BetheStarYouAre.org

http://www.BTSYA.org

 

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DONATE: https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504 

 

GIVING THANKS

 

Many of us have struggled this year as we continue to live through this pandemic. Lives have been lost, hearts have been shattered. It is clear that we all have to take time to heal our souls. Thanksgiving is a time where we all come together with our families, friends and the people we love.

 

Even though it is difficult to celebrate normally this year, we can celebrate safely. We can socially distance with our loved ones, or gather together with the people we’ve quarantined with, or even have a simple phone call with a friend.  We can enjoy life despite the craziness. Remember and appreciate the little things we all cherish in life.

 

It is the season of giving and gratitude. Stay safe. Life is worth living.

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Angelica Parmoshin is a high school senior devoting time and efforts to volunteering with life changing organizations. Read more http://www.btsya.com/resources.html

THANK YOU

How can we thank the teachers and staff who tirelessly work to educate and comfort our youth?  Whether or not we have children in school, we all want our future generation to thrive and grow.

As a simple gesture of thanks, my husband and I decided to give the gift of coffee to teachers and staff at two local schools.  We added a card that says “You Are Awesome!”

By purchasing bags of ground coffee from the Friends of San Lucas, we’re supporting the coffee farmers in Guatemala.

Think about thanking a teacher today!

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Karen Kitchel is the Kindness Coordinator volunteer with BTSYA. She serves meals to the homeless and is a volunteer teacher, writer, job coach, and mentor. www.scatteringkindness.com

 

MY 2020 THANKSGIVING

Thanksgiving in 2020 looks a little different this year. I’m grateful to be able to celebrate and spend time with my family.

 

Thanksgiving has always been my second favorite holiday (next to Christmas). What I love about Thanksgiving is having the moment to reflect and show gratitude. Usually, every year we go to my aunt’s house in Yorba Linda. We play games, eat great food, and have fun with tons of family. This year due to COVID it will just be myself and my parents at our home this year. I am looking forward to eating food, playing games with my family, watching movies, and having fun with our new dog Bronco.

 

This year I am grateful for many things. I am grateful for my mom, dad, family, and friends. I am also grateful for my basketball team, my life, BE THE STAR YOU ARE!® (BTSYA), and most of all keeping a level head throughout this year.

I hope everyone has the best Thanksgiving ever!

 

Stay safe and Peace out!!

Jonathan Jackson

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Thirteen year-old Jonathan Jackson is a reporter on Express Yourself!® Teen Radio with his segment, Jay’s Sport’s World. He maintains a 4.0, is passionate about basketball, and dreams of attending U.C.L.A. in their journalism program.  https://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2014/express-yourself

HOLIDAY SHOPPING? BLACK FRIDAY SALES?

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The holidays are approaching.To avoid exposure to coronavirus in stores, you may wish to shop on-line. We have suggestions for you to shop, save, and stay safe. Please use these web sites for all of your shopping essentials.

2020 Amazon smile logo.jpg1. AmazonSmile donates .5% of purchases https://smile.amazon.com/ch/94-3333882

2. Discounted books at Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/shops/be_the_star_you_are_charity

Giving Assistant Icon 234x60.jpg

3. Giving Assistant: Shop. Earn. Give! Use Giving Assistant to earn cash at 3500+ popular online stores :https://givingassistant.org/np#be-the-star-you-are-inc

2020 IGIVE logo.jpg

4. Shop at over 1300 stores on IGIVE: http://www.iGive.com/BTSYA

cynthia brian's books.jpg5Stock up on autographed, first edition books from our StarStyle® store and we will include extra goodies with your order. Plus, through the holidays we are including a complimentary CD of beautiful, relaxing music to help you decompress. https://www.CynthiaBrian.com/online-store.

 

6. Are you a gamer, lover of new software, or other digital content? Buy all of your favorites at Humble Bundle. http://ow.ly/cYs130iN6n4

STAY SAFE! WEAR A MASK!

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LINKS YOU CAN USE

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Positive Results: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/positive-results

About Us: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/about_us

Programs: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/programs

How to Help: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/how-to-help

Blog: https://www.bethestaryouare.org/blog-1

 

2020-top-rated-awards-badge-embed.jpgGREAT NON PROFITS REVIEWS: https://greatnonprofits.org/org/be-the-star-you-are-inc

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GUIDESTAR/CANDID: https://www.guidestar.org/profile/94-3333882

We invite you to volunteer, get involved, or make a donation. Make a DONATION through PAYPAL GIVING FUND and PAYPAL with 100% going to BTSYA with NO FEES:  https://www.paypal.com/fundraiser/charity/1504

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May you and your loved ones enjoy a restful and blessed Thanksgiving wherever you are and whatever you do. 

THANK YOU FOR BEING PART OF OUR BE THE STAR YOU ARE!® GALAXY!

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Be the Star You Are!® 501 c3
PO Box 376
Moraga, California 94556
US
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