I am Beautiful.

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This artwork is simply one page from my new coloring book that makes its debut in August. The coloring book is entitled, “Beautiful Children’s Positive Character Coloring Book” and will be available on amazon.com.

This coloring book is revolutionary; it reinvents the way we utilize our children’s playtime.

The children will have the opportunity to color, read, learn, remember and do a few writing activities at the completion of the book, if they choose.

Why Positive Character Books?

Positive Character Books help build beautiful people from the inside – out, instead of from the outside – in (which is what we see a lot of in society today).

These books contribute to positively molding our children by helping to build their self-worth, self-esteem and confidence. Therefore, assisting in their achievement of higher academic success.

The truth is, we are all beautiful in our own, unique and individual way when we are exhibiting Positive Character Behaviors.

*Recently, I heard a story online about a young Playboy model that was condemned for taking a picture of an elderly woman at a gym locker room while she was naked, and then sending the picture over her social media feed stating, ‘If I can’t unsee this, neither can you.’ The model subsequently lost all of her modeling contracts, got banned from Playboy and faced a heavy lawsuit in court after her actions were revealed to the public.

This woman went from being praised for her outer beauty and then cast aside for her show of grotesque judgement.

However, my contention is not just with her, it is also with society’s harsh judgement of this woman unveiling her true character; her essence.

Society did not expect her to present her true beauty, initially. She was just adorned with the title of ‘Beautiful woman’ without having to present more than her face and body.

I, today and every day, challenge society to allow a person to walk in and Present their true selves, before bestowing the title of ‘Beautiful Human’ upon them. Observe their inner character first, then ask yourself:

Have they shown kindness? Are they a hard worker? Do they help others? Are they compassionate? Are they exhibiting Positive Character Behaviors in their every day actions?

The only true, lasting beauty, is the beauty of the heart, Rumi once said.

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel, Maya Angelou once stated.

Let’s remember this when we are presented with the presence of another. Let’s feel their essence with our hearts, not cast our judgement about their physical appearance with our eyes, thoughtless words and shallow assumptions.

Thank you for reading.

Bye Bye, Busan.

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I haven’t yet mentioned this on my blog but I left ‘Dynamic’ Busan, South Korea early morning on February 14th, 2017 before the contract at the hagwon (private school) where I worked was completed.

I left for several reasons. However, the main reason was because I was tired of being treated like a second-class citizen. I agreed to work at the private school after being told that my writing and illustration abilities were needed and going to be taken advantage of during my tenure. Shortly after I arrived at the school, I discovered that I had been fed lip-service and all went down hill from there. Even my method of teaching ‘good character behaviors’ were discouraged at the school; this was intolerable for me and the last straw.

As a 34 year old woman with a reasonable amount of professional work experience under my belt, I believe that I shouldn’t be obligated to ‘survive’ at a job for a year when I could potentially ‘thrive’ elsewhere. I am smart enough and wise enough to take my own advice; I have moved on.

I have started a new chapter in my ‘Adventurer Diary’; I have a lot to accomplish. I am currently residing in the United States once again and have missed the familiarity of ‘home’.

No, it’s not perfect here but there is a lot of good I can do in my home-country with my newly acquired skills, expertise and polished natural abilities.

I will continue to keep you posted on where my adventures take me… on this roller-coaster we call life. Trying to stay tuned-in to my intuition and do what feels best for me at this moment in time.

I don’t know where I’m going to end up in this life but I do know this: I will do my best to make the most of this adventure.

I still remember watching the movie, “Boyhood” on the plane ride back from Turkey. To quote a line from the movie, Patricia Arquette’s main character says near the end, “…I just thought there would be more.” What I’m trying to get at is, for some of us, it’s easy to fall into the trap of, ‘…my life will start when…’ but in actuality, all of this is our life; life has already started and is in full swing, whether we like it or not.

I’m not looking to say, ‘…I just thought there would be more.’ I’m interested in continuing to say, ‘…I’m doing the best I can to give myself a good life.’

I’m doing the best I can to give myself a good life. Not interested in surviving. Looking to thrive…merely aspiring to survive is for the unambitious and uninspired.

Let’s all aspire to be more, even if that road is an uncertain and uncomfortable one.

Blessed be this journey of discovery, positivity and inextinguishable hope for the betterment of our lives.

~Love, Leslie

 

Durian for beginners

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About to try durian for the first time!

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Not enjoying durian in a not so subtle way.

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Taking a closer look at the fruit.

Today I tried durian for the very first time! It’s impressive that I have lived in this country for over 2 years and have gotten away with not yet trying durian; I have definitely been too scared to try. However, tonight, I was forced to try it and…

First… the smell hit me! The odd thing is, I had smelled it before in the grocery store but this time it was sitting right in front of my face and the smell seemed to have changed; I did not like this change.  It smelled like something kind of rotten…

Oh man, then I had to put it in my mouth and swallow it!!!  Aduh dong!!! It was so weird and squishy.  To be fair, the fruit is beautiful: soft and delicate. The flavor signature is an odd one; you either like it or you don’t. I definitely DON’T as you can clearly see in the middle picture!

However, I am so grateful to have been able to try yet another amazing thing in this lifetime. I’m definitely looking forward to the next challenge!

Birthday gifts from my students!

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Well, I had been trying to keep my birthday a secret but quickly discovered that my students remembered me telling them my birth date from LAST SEMESTER!

1 remembered… then 2 knew, then everybody knew! The secret was out!!!

The kids started writing, “HAPPY BIRTHDAY,” all over the white board and all over random pieces of paper. One student made a blue ‘wallet’ and put a note in it (as you can see from the picture above).  One made a heart-shaped paper airplane and showed me how it worked!  One student gave me her pencil with a red diamond stud at the top! Another student gave me his unused #2 pencil!  I told him, “You should keep this!  You can use it to do your school work.”  The student let me know that it was OK for me to have it because he had many pencils and he didn’t want that one anyway. 😉 I also received a lot of chocolate disguised as money! OH! And I can’t forget to mention all of the ‘warm hugs’ I received.

Oh man… those kids are going to see some ‘warm tears’ when I have to say goodbye to them in June.

:p