Rock Steady

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What do you think of when you here the word, ‘foundation’? I think of a powder turned thick, grey sludge, resulting in a concrete foundation. The very base of every home. Without this rock steady foundation, a faulty future might arise. Another kind of foundation that comes to mind is the immediate family. Those who raise us (parents), those we grow up alongside (siblings), all of those immediate family members (aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents). These are the people from whom we learn language, religion, beliefs, culture, morals & values. They set the foundation long before we know that we have a choice in who we become. Another foundation that comes to mind is make-up. Liquid or powder, foundation smooths over any imperfections and highlights the beauty that is naturally present. The latter type of foundation is of a subject matter that I’m not overly versed in, as I didn’t begin wearing make-up in earnest not till my 30’s. Still, foundation is foundation and it seems to not matter if we’re talking homes, families or make-up.

beauty blush brush color
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Writer, Katandra Jackson Nunnally at Facebook… 👍 the page…


Family & Budget Friendly, Summer Fun

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Summer vacation is upon us. Okay so technically it’s not summer until June 21st, however for Educators in the Western Hemisphere, school’s out and we’re just easing into the long awaited phenomena that is summer vacation. Insert ‘woooooosah’ right here.

Summer for me as a child meant freedom, relaxation, exploration, discovery and making new memories. This still holds true in my adulthood, except that now that I am a mother, my focus is my children and their happiness. Ergo summer vacation is no longer all about me, but all about them. With a brood of 4, 1 of whom is an adult, 2 of whom live at home full time, and the youngest, my extra heartbeat, resides with us every other weekend… I’m seeking summer fun that is bound to be family & budget friendly. I was semi prepared for this entry as I’d already began to etch out a list of activities to do with the kiddos over the course of the next few weeks. After a little research and some careful thought, here is the list that I have compiled, 12 activities total, tweak, rearrange, edit to your liking. I suggest you check out local activities in your area and by all means do get as creative as possible. Have an amazing summer…

Have Fun? Will Travel! My hometown is pretty small as far as hometowns go. I cannot quote you the population by heart but there is 1 grocery store, 1 elementary, 1 traffic light/intersection. I’ve lived in larger cities, see Atlanta GA, Altamonte Springs FL, Fayetteville NC. If you’re lucky enough to live in a large city, your summer activities are sure to be plentiful. But if you’re like me, you’ll have to travel with the family. My top 6 activities require a bit of driving.

  1. The Zoo. This one’s easy, right? Well, here in Georgia, every library has this golden ticket. Really it’s a dvd titled, Zoo Atlanta Family Pass. And guess what that dvd gets you? You guessed it, a free pass to Zoo Atlanta! But not just 1 pass. Upon borrowing this cd from your local Georgia library and returning it unscathed (lol), you will receive 4 family passes to Zoo Atlanta. From my exact location, Atlanta is about a 3 hour drive. In comparison to having to purchase tickets for every single family member, I’ll take the drive time. Tip: Feed the family breakfast, fill up the tank, break out the cooler, pack a lunch & put it on ice. Then all that’s left to do is sit back & enjoy the ride. Admission for 4 FREE!!
  2. Beach Bum Lazy Hazy Summer Fun in the sun days! I live on the east coast of the United States, Georgia to be exact, and we just so happen to be 1 hour’s drive from the nearest beach, which is Tybee Island Beach. But get this, there are beaches running all up and down the east coast so depending upon the direction we choose to travel in, we could be lounging on a beach within 1 – 3 hours. Here they are: Tybee Island, Jekyll Island & St. Simon’s Island (Georgia), Amelia Island & Jacksonville Beach (Florida), Hilton Head Island & Myrtle Beach (South Carolina). Admission FREE!!
  3. Wassaw National Wildlife Refuge and Okefenokee Swamps. Local to Savannah. I didn’t fully research these. There’s an admission fee. I’m not exactly one with bugs and gators and creepy crawly things, so you’re on your own with this one. Lol.
  4. Noah’s Ark… Locust Grove Georgia, between Macon & Atlanta. My family & I absolutely adore this place. There is no admission fee, however upon entrance there are donation boxes posted. This location is an animal refuge. The peacocks are walking free. The wolves roam in expansive enclosures. There’s even a habitat that houses a lion, a tiger & a bear… Go ahead and say it, I know you wanna… Oh my!!! If you don’t do another thing this summer, go here, you’ll be glad you did. Not local, check out similar programs in your area.
  5. Library Movie Nights & Theater Matinee. Check local listings & websites, however my fave is just pick up the phone & call. Press 0, talk with a rep, get the deets (details). Does your local library host summer movie nights for the kiddos? What about your local movie theater? Is there a discount for noonday matinee? Do tell!
  6. Picnic at the park. We’re about a quick car ride from one of Georgia’s State Parks. Pack a picnic and after everyone has eaten, give the kiddos time to play.               That was round 1 which as you can see, required a little drive time, some near, some far. Now on to at home summer fun. Enjoy.
  7. Have a little back yard fun… Stargazing. Grab a blanket, a citronella candle, some insect repellent spray and wait for nightfall.
  8. Have a little front yard fun… DIY Slip & Slide! There are all kinds of videos and how to tutorials. Pick one and have a blast. Just add water!
  9. Get in the kitchen & cook up some memories. Whip up a family fave or create some new concoction. The point & the plan is to have fun. Make a mess. The bigger the mess, the bigger the memory.
  10. Go for a walk. It can be around your neighborhood, at your local park, or some other area you’d like to explore. Make it a nature hike. Bird watch. Whatever you do, just get out & get walking.
  11. Make a cool, sweet treat. Fruit juice, craft sticks (optional), paper cups, ice cube trays or invest in reusable popsicle maker, they come with cute, colorful plastic sticks.
  12. Last but not least, my favorite of this list of summer fun activities… Read a book! What was your favorite book as a child? What summer memories will you help to create for your family?
  13. BONUS ACTIVITY: Get creative & make some art. There’s a local rock painting group in my area, Tattnall County Rocks, and it well, it totally rocks!!

Enjoy your summer, Katandra Jackson Nunnally, CEO at FreedomInk Publishing

beach child enjoyment foam
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Family is…

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Family is the one place where you don’t have to pretend to be someone you are not! You don’t have to try to be better than the next! This is not a competition… When one succeeds, we all win! Family is understanding, compassion, pride in one another, encouraging… Family has your back no matter what! The ultimate support =) Family is love ❤ Family is the one place we can remove the mask, let our hair down, kick our shoes off, get crazy, be loud… And no one will lift their nose or raise a brow… Family is home.

~Katandra Shanel Jackson Nunnally

CEO at FreedomInk Publishing


Photo: The family message board in the Jackson~Nunnally household.

Authors. Genetically influenced or simply encouraged?

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Does the apple really stay close to the tree… Sometimes? I’ve been wondering lately if there is some genetic leaf on the D.N.A tree of life that predetermines the careers and professions of those in our families! I have seen Mother-Daughter Authors, Aunt-Nephew Authors, Mother-Son Authors, Brother-Brother Authors, this within my own personal sphere. A brief search has returned some rather slim results

Joan & Jackie Collins

David & Amy Sedaris

And that’s it!? So maybe it’s my mind playing tricks on me. It seems I do know at least a dozen. But I suppose that’s not many. And when it comes to what society deems as famous, the number of Authors with familial ties, grows even slimmer! (Too bad this ain’t an entry about musicians, athletes, politicians, actors/actresses…)

So I’m still in a state of wonderment! Not due to those in my circle or those awfully pitiful research results! I’m still in a state of wonderment because I have seen my own children show promise as budding writers! Is it some genetic anomaly which suggests that maybe, just maybe, if there is one Author in that Ancestral bank, that another in generations to come, shall be born? Or is it much simpler than that? “What we see, we’ll be.” Is it simply that those that have chosen to walk this path will do so because of the example set before them? Recall that I said, my children, all 3 of them, show promise. However I did not mention anything about them showing interest! They seem to be content to be good writers and when it comes to school projects where this skill is on display, to their teachers and fellow classmates’ astonishment, they excel. Now I must take a look at myself. Writing is such a ‘reclusive sport’. Sure, we all need encouragement and support! No man or woman or child, Author or not, is an Island! Still, writing is done alone, solo. There is nobody standing over my shoulders pushing me to write! I wonder what would have happened if I had seen proofs of an Author in my family in say, my mother or an aunt or heard tale of some great grandparent that was a storyteller. Okay, I’m kind of rambling. I do that a lot. My point is, should I encourage my children to believe that they too can be an Author, the CEO of their own Publishing Company or maybe one day, run FreedomInk for me? Should I write in the day, let them see me? Or should I assume that there is some strand somewhere there in the genetic makeup of the three that I have birthed that maybe, just maybe has already been predetermined that they are destined to become Storytellers too!?

Before I close this blog entry, if I may leave a plea in this very public place. If you should happen to be an Author, please encourage those around you who have shown promise of being in possession of this literary gift! You may be the difference in them expressing a true interest in this profession! I feel it would be a crime NOT to encourage them to walk the path that your footsteps have walked before them. Take them under your wing and be the most amazing example ever. Make your family proud. Many many generations from now, Authors will look back and smile at the remembrance of those that blazed the trail before them! The End…


Proudly encouraging my mother to compose her first book! Maybe there’s something to this whole genetic influence thing after all.

Katandra Shanel Jackson, CEO at FreedomInk Publishing