Just.Be.Enough. was founded in July of 2011 by Elena Sonnino. The idea for the site came to her as she was swimming laps, training for a triathlon, thinking about the importance of feeling confident and empowered. The truth though, is that Just.Be.Enough. is a result of the voices of many that have risen up to believe in the power of being enough.

It all started when she was reading a blog post about accepting ourselves even with our imperfections which led to a link up on her own blog Ciao Mom asking women to create a Things I Like About Me list. The struggle that followed for many was eye opening. The focus on imperfections and flaws had taken seed and had deep roots that were hard to change. But so many women did. And as a result, they walked taller, felt empowered, and took the internet by storm.

Just.Be.Enough. shares the stories, the voices, the truths of many. Its mission is to empower, inspire, and remind us that that the time has come to celebrate ourselves. We must. We must carry the weight of confidence and empowerment on our shoulders instead of allowing the burden of our flaws and imperfections to push us down.

Founder:

Elena Sonnino

Elena SonninoElena Sonnino is a freelance writer, blogger, instructional coach, runner, cancer survivor, and chaser of dreams. She empowers others to make every moment matter at LiveDoGrow.

Elena spent twelve years as a teacher, educational leader, and mentor to elementary students.  Whether she was a classroom teacher or an advanced academic resource teacher, her passion was to empower students to develop independent and creative thinking. She continues to work with teachers now as a coach and mentor, helping teachers improve their practice.

Whether she is empowering women to believe they are enough at Just.Be.Enough or telling the story of living the dolce vita while traveling as a contributor and Internal Community Relations Director at TravelingMom.com, Elena is passionate about fostering self sufficiency and helping others take steps to live.do.grow.

One of the most important factors of Elena’s decision to leave teaching after twelve years was a passion for telling the social good story.  During a trip to Haiti in January 2012, Elena realized that building capacity meant more than encouraging others to set a SMART goal or go for a run. It meant giving voice  to those that wanted to learn and grow so that they could become self sufficient despite the obstacles that stood in their way.

Elena is focused in 2013 to take back control of her Health, to say I Can instead of doubting herself at every turn, and being more of a Risk taker to achieve her goals.

 

Editor:

Robin Farr

aboutme-picRobin Farr is a woman, a writer, a wife, a runner, a communications professional, a speaker and a mom. At least that’s the chronological order of her current roles in life. Having undiagnosed postpartum depression after her son was born in 2008 mixed her up philosophically in quite a spectacular way. She started her blog, Farewell, Stranger, as a way of writing herself out of the lingering effects of PPD.

Through writing about her experience, including the hard stuff like issues with rage that nearly ended her marriage and a breakdown that caused her to take four months off work, she discovered she’s not alone in her struggle. The connections she’s made with others through her blog have shown her how brutal honesty and self-acceptance can help others.

A fatalist by nature, Robin’s motto is “live the life you’re meant to.” She found the beauty in her breakdown and believes we all have the ability to not only overcome whatever challenges we face but to create something better as a result. And that’s the perspective she brings to Just.Be.Enough.

Robin is further exploring her identity and “enough-ness” as it exists within this motherhood gig after the birth of her second child in October 2012. Her three words — Stretch, Balance, and Presence — will hopefully allow her to do that in a way that’s positive and allows her to continue learning while still making time for catching episodes of Downton Abbey and eating chocolate.

Robin is the token Canadian on the JBE team. She and her family live in Calgary, Alberta.

Contributors:

Angela

Angela Just Be EnoughAngela has an undergraduate degree in English and an M.A. in teaching. Until her son was born, she attempted to convince middle school students that writing workshops were just as exciting as perfecting the art of texting through your pocket. Angela blogs at Tread Softly where she writes about life one book at a time, melding together a love of reading, writing, and the lovely miscellany making up her world. She adores her freelance position as a writer at AllParenting.com and works to grow and nurture an online community of creative writers as a managing editor at Write on Edge. Nothing Goes Away, her fist collection of short stories, was recently published, and she is always dabbling with another fiction project. Angela and her husband Ryan both grew up in southeastern Michigan and currently live in metro Detroit with their children Abbey and Dylan.

During 2013 Angela is incorporating the concepts of Progress, Light, and Dreaming into her goals and aspirations for all areas of her life. Progress sometimes happens in leaps, but even baby steps forward are a thing to strive for and to celebrate. Light is a two-fold word for her, meaning both clarity and better understanding but also lightness in regards to focusing on the positive and letting mental burdens and worries fall away. Finally, dream. Because all of the goals and aspirations and practical plans are nothing without the magical, sparkling dreams we see when we close our eyes and imagine our lives in their shiniest form.

Kir Piccini
kir picciniKir is a book, TV, cupcake and shoe lover who has deep affection for Broadway musicals, NYC and romantic comedies. Kir stared her blog, The Kir Corner, in 2005 after she was diagnosed with unexplained infertility, using it to chronicle her four-year journey through the depression and loneliness of not being able to have a child. It took an online village to get her through the in-vitro fertilization that made her the mother of twins (Giovanni and Jacob) in January 2008. Today she credits that community with getting her through the darkest times of her life.

This year Kir will focus on Nourishing those relationships, hoping to encourage love, support and care with her words. Even the most optimistic people can carry a heavy heart. The past year saw Kir struggling with self-doubt and disappointment, so she will be focused on Healing/Mending those parts of herself that need a boost and inspiring others to do the same.

In 2010 Kir rekindled a love of writing fiction and poetry. Her blog is now full of ongoing works in progress and stories from her imagination. One of her plans is to self publish a novel this summer. But more than that, to embrace the word Novel for what it is: bringing new, contemporary and unique ideas to the page.
And when she’s not writing fiction, parenting twins with her handsome husband of nine years or dreaming of shoe sales, Kir is working full time, with children in daycare and her head in the clouds.


Missy Bedell

missy bedell | Just.Be.Enough.Missy Bedell is a woman, a wife, a mother, a writer, a community leader, a blogger, an inactive attorney and a newly inducted member to the 40-and-up crowd. In March 2011 she founded The Literal Mom, a blog that encourages parents to think about their parenting. A thoughtful approach to anything we do in life will make us better, and that is especially true with parenting.

In college, Missy majored in English literature and loved her years of devouring the written word for grades. Somewhere along the way, she thought being a lawyer would be more fun and lost her love of writing for a time, because motions to suppress and compel just aren’t that as much fun as they seem on TV. Blogging and parenting reawakened her passion for writing and she’s finally learned to “do what you love.”

A lifelong perfectionist, Missy had no idea of the sometimes negative consequences this trait could cause until she started seeing her oldest daughter become a perfectionist like her. Just.Be.Enough. is the perfect place to help remind her and others that there is no such thing as perfect. And hopefully, along the way, she will model the “we’re not perfect, we’re enough” mantra for her girls.

Missy is in her 40s, has been married close to 15 years, has two daughters who are five years apart, and lives in Columbus, Ohio, where it’s pretty hard not to be a Buckeye fan, even if you didn’t grow up there.

The three words Missy chose for this year are Persistence, Hope and Deliberate. She looks forward to exploring them in the JBE forum in 2013.


Cristie Ritz King

Cristie Ritz King is terrible at writing bios because she finds it hard to say what she “is” in a few sentences. In her life she has been an English teacher, a sales director, a writer, a health coach, a doula and parenting educator, a mom, a wife, a sister, an aspiring chef, a reader, a music fanatic, a food lover and a consistently reluctant exerciser. As you can imagine, it’s a horror-show creating business cards.

These days, Cristie is a working mom who by day juggles life running a house full of kids with her work as a blogger and holistic health and parenting coach. She helps busy people either have a baby, take care of a baby, feed kids or feed themselves and their kids, lose weight and, best, feel awesome about doing all of it. At night, Cristie usually writes about the madness of her days and then just hopes to catch a shower and an hour of television that makes her laugh.

For all of the chaos listed above, Cristie’s three words for the year are Wonder, Focus, and Fun. “Wonder” is because the overwhelm of life can sometimes get to her and Cristie realized that stopping to see the world through the wonderous eyes of her children helped everything to be all right. So her intention is to do more of that going forward.

“Focus”? Well, c’mon, look at the head-spinning list of jobs above. Perhaps focus has been a long time coming.

As for “fun,” while life is generally enjoyable, it’s mostly just busy and full. A long time ago a therapist told Cristie what she really needed was to remember how to have fun. That advice stuck and now she’s committed herself in 2013 to making life fun again.

Cristie blogs all of her adventures in just about everything at The Right Hand Mom, and at Real Life Wellness she talks about food, babies and fitness. She can also be found on Twitter (usually tired, often snarky and often talking about The Today Show  in 140 characters or less) at @RitzKing.


Tricia

tricia | Raising HumansThroughout the years, Tricia has had many titles, held many jobs, and jumped into many roles – from barista to account director and everything in between. These days she proudly spends her time focusing on her three favorite roles: writer, mama, and wife. These are the ones that fill her with joy and help her live the life she was meant to live.

In 2011, Tricia founded her blog Raising Humans to capture two amazing journeys of growth that were happening right before her eyes: the growth of her then 1-year-old daughter and the growth of herself as a woman and a mother. Through her writing and community building at Raising Humans, she hopes to inspire other parents to pay attention to those moments – the good and bad, the beautiful and sometimes ugly moments when we realize that we are growing together, side-by-side with our children.

For 2013, Tricia hopes to strengthen, nurture, and appreciate herself, her relationships, her children, and all of the little moments that make up her one, beautiful life.

Tara Roberts

Tara RobertsTara (pronounced Tar-ah and with a southern drawl) lives and plays on the Florida Gulf Coast. A former news and online media reporter, she now spends her days penning eclectic fiction and roaming the woods and beaches of the Panhandle talking to herself and taking photographs. She can be found most days at Thin spiral notebook  trying to quiet the voices in her head.

Having recently entered the ranks of the 50-something demographic, Tara struggles with an emptying nest and what she wants to be when she grows up. The mother of two — a 20-something daughter and soon to be 20-something son — she is learning to accept that she can’t keep her children babies forever and welcome the changes that come along with redefining her role as a mother and wife.

Tara lives near Destin, Florida with her husband of nearly 27 years, and their 19-year-old son. Their daughter attends graduate school in North Carolina.

Alexa B

Alexa BAlexa B (who blogs under the name Kat Biggie) is the owner of the blog No Holding Back. She started the blog in June 2012 as an outlet for her grief after losing one of her twin daughters two days after birth to complications from Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS). Since she has always had a passion for writing, it did not take long for her to begin to write not only about living after loss and TTTS, but all things to do with being a stay-at-home mother raising three children five and under. Prior to making the decision to stay home with her children, Alexa worked in Homeland Security and Counter Terrorism, and served over six years in the United States Air Force.

Over the course of 2013 Alexa is focusing on the words Heal, Support, and Balance. The last year has been spent grieving her daughter Kathryn, and it is time for Alexa to allow herself to heal. Through this experience she has learned the importance of support. Not only to her, but the support she hopes to provide to other mothers.  While taking care of her children, supporting others, advocating awareness for TTTS, and writing, she knows it will be important to find balance in her life.


Lee Reyes-Fournier

LeeLee Reyes-Fournier co-writes the highly provocative and informative CoupleDumb.com, The Relationship Blog. CoupleDumb is a relationship site that covers everything from marriage to dating to parenting and everything having to do with creating lasting happiness.

Lee is a professional psychotherapist with over 25 years of experience working with couples, families and addiction. She has been writing about psychological issues professionally for over 10 years. Lee practices what she preaches and has been in therapy and working on her self-effectiveness for years.

Her three words come from her first real breakthrough as to who she really was: A “Walking, Talking  Possibility”. She looks forward to sharing her experience with these words and how they resonate with her.

Stacey 

staceyStacey is a 30-something stay-at-home mom to seven children; three boys (13, 10, and 19 months), and four girls (11, 8, 5 and 3). She happily embraces the crazy. In her spare time (or rather, the two seconds in between driving carpools and changing diapers) she is a writer, a runner and an occasional musician. Stacey began blogging five years ago at Stacey’s Mothering Moments in an attempt to share the realities of motherhood.

Stacey has recently enjoyed the success of becoming a published writer and continues to pursue her dreams of publication. The challenges of finding personal success while raising seven children have made her efficient at time management. She has also discovered that while being a mom will always be the most important part of her life, having personal success has only enhanced the journey of motherhood.

Stacey’s journey on JBE this year will be defined by three words: Laugh, Balance and Tenacity. Laugh because sometimes that’s all that is left. Balance because without it we would be lopsided. Tenacity because life requires us to try again and again.

Stacey lives in Utah with her clan and husband of 15 years. They are tormented by the three cats the children suckered them into, a tortoise and two fish (because seven children wasn’t enough to keep them busy).

Tracie Nall

Tracie NallTracie Nall is a writer and homeschooling mom living in Florida with her husband, nine-year-old daughter, and more books than her shelves will hold. In 2006, Tracie started blogging and quickly discovered her love for writing. From Tracie is the place where she shares her heart, and all of the difficult and beautiful things that make life whole.

Tracie is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, and the act of writing about her own story of survival was integral to her healing journey. She manages the monthly Blog Against Child Abuse, which raises awareness about the serious issue of child abuse in all its forms. She believes in the importance of support, the power of speaking out, and the possibility of healing and joy.

When she isn’t writing, Tracie spends her time reading, watching far too many movies and TV shows, and trying to get her family to dance and sing with her. She loves office supplies and takes pictures of things that are yellow.

Tracie is embracing Action, Change, and Nurture as the three words to guide her 2013 Just.Be.Enough journey.


SAM

SAMSAM is a woman who hid behind a label for a long time. If she’s not mom, she’s wife. If she’s not wife, she’s friend, sister, or fill-in-the-blank-here. She spends a lot of time being any label but SAM.

Just.Be.Enough has become a focal point in her journey to rediscover who she is as a woman, a parent, a spouse, and in every other aspect of her life. Without JBE, she wouldn’t be able to say “I Can” with more confidence than ever. She’d never know what a wonderful person is lurking behind those labels ready to be set free.

On any given day, you can find SAM hiding behind her fiction at My Write Side, where she will be sharing more of her journey. Both Courage and Completion relate not only to her real life but to her writing goals as well, as she has many unfinished stories. She needs a good dose courage to believe in her writing and begin marketing it for publication. Her words are her strength and her life line. She writes because it’s in her blood, and she blogs because she has a story to tell.

SAM’s journey is far from over however, and this year as part of the JBE team she is committed to working on Courage, Cherish, and Completion to strengthen her faith in herself and those surrounding her.

Kimberly Rues

KimberlyRuesKimberly is a Type-A girl learning that Type A- is just fine (and probably a whole lot more fun). She is a single mother of  two teenage sons and struggles to effectively juggle multiple jobs, quality family time, and the occasional date.

By day, Kimberly shares her love of books with children as an elementary school librarian. By night she’s a carpool chauffeur, Food Network junkie, and resistant exerciser.

She started her blog, Rubber Chicken Madness, in 2011 with the intent to share her expertise in raising boys as a single mother. Her realization that she was no expert, just a mom trying to be enough, allowed the blog to evolve to be a reflection of parenting while enjoying the ride.

She is committed to finding a way to Breathe – to cushion her world with a little more space, a little more time, a lot less stress. A little red wine and a fresh pink pedicure can only help when things get crowded or crazy.

As the year unfolds, Kimberly will be dismantling the wall around her formerly broken heart, ready to Embrace new opportunities, new people, new joy. With each passing day, she will be taking a moment to find gratitude and Appreciation in everyday moments and extraordinary ones.

Kirsten

kirsten

Lover of sweet tea, washi tape, and stupid movies. Doer of the dishes. Keeper of the mismatched socks. Kirsten is a full-time working wife and mom trying her best to maintain her sanity in a crazy world.

{Re}Married for five years to her best friend and learning to co-parent her pre-teen daughter jointly with her ex-husband keeps her busy, but her love for crafting, photographing and writing fills her free time and her heart.

Join Kirsten as she shares her journey to Live Her Life. She will share ways to Simplify your life, Participate in the everyday adventures, and Create new memories and relationships along the way. Kirsten also blogs at One Tough Mother, where she shares crafts, organizational tips, and home decor. You can find her on Facebook and Twitter.

Corinne 

jbe12Corinne has played many roles in her life, the most recent of which has been that of a registered nurse. From deli clerk to photo lab manager to Navy Reservist, she learned something about herself along the way and often put these lessons into written words. She recently started her own blog, Seeds of Coriander, to have an outlet for what flows through her spirit.

Corinne took comfort in the words of others during past struggles with a divorce and depression, as well as a year-long battle with agoraphobia. Their stories of success and strength helped Corinne to reformulate her own energies and to take the one step forward, which would make all the difference. She hopes to be able to lend her strength to others who may need it now.

Life is a very personal journey. That journey is full of discoveries, whether big or small. Somewhere along the way, we feel like we may have found our Self; perhaps this will happen any number of times. This year, Corinne will focus on three words that are full of all-encompassing exhilaration and new promise: Journey. Discovery. Self.

Corinne lives in Southern California with all of her loves – two cats and a long-time boyfriend. She is happy to have her family nearby, and draws on their support more than they might realize.