Thursday, May 31, 2012

What's Happening with the Perfect Peach Journey Workshops?

Every young girl can benefit from learning more about herself, how to keep her standards high and how to make informed decisions?

We are living in a time where young girls are defining themselves by what they see on television or hear on the radio and talking more about each other than supporting and lifting one another up. They lack exposure to good role models and self-esteem is suffering while self-worth is getting lost.

The first series of the Perfect Peach Journey Workshop was successful!  My workshops provide young girls an opportunity not only to learn about building healthy, positive relationships with others, it also fosters them in exploring and learning about themselves. They learn about Self-Love, Perception, Domestic Violence, Self-Worth, Values, Forgiveness, and Reconciliation.  Each workshop includes a lesson in each theme, reading and acting out dialogue, learning self-expression by writing in a journal, interaction through activities, and special guests of positive female role models to inspire them with their stories.
I had the most amazing group of young girls.  I could not have picked a better group of perfect peaches!!  I was truly touched by what they gained from the workshops held each week at The Green Room Actors Lounge.  Their testimonies moved me and the sponsors who got to read their letter.  Check out the workbook here:  'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?' Workbook.
This series of workshops would not have been possible if it were not for some very generous sponsors. I have to thank the following people (all men!) who despite their busy schedules, didn't think twice about giving to a group of young girls and changing their lives.

Andrew Maloney, Executive Vice-President - Poplar Healthcare
Kevin Roulhac, Owner - N Motion Hand Therapy
David Panton, Business Executive
Will Packer, Movie Producer - Rainforest Films
Hollywood, Celebrity Fitness Trainer
Julian Bond, Minister
Mel Banks, Urban Spirit Publishing Company
Tony James, CEO of Tony James Realty

I am looking forward to the next series of workshops and need sponsors.  Email me at if you are interested in sponsoring a young girl. 

I will end this blog like we end every workshop:  I am on a Perfect Peach Journey... I love who I am ...  I love who I'm becoming...

God Bless!

-Tracy Nicole

Big hugs to my 13 peaches Dramatic, Shy, Talkative, Unique, Marvelous, Independent, Ambitious, Overcomer, Radient, Strong, Kind, Exotic, Beauty
Would love a comment from you!!  Talk to you soon!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Is it easy for you to forgive??

We always hear people say 'I can forgive but I can't forget'.  What do people really mean when they say that?  The statement alone sounds resentful to me. (my opinion)  This is our fourth session and we started it out talking about forgiveness.  What is the definition of 'forgiveness'?  It is the process of letting go of anger as a result of a perceived offense, difference, or mistake, and/or ceasing to demand punishment or restitution.  Forgiveness is the process of forgiving or to stop feeling resentful toward someone for (an offense, flaw, or mistake.)
When you decide to forgive someone it doesn't mean that you deny the other person's responsibility for hurting you, and it doesn't minimize or justify the wrong.  From my own experience forgiveness can lead to feelings of understanding, empathy and even compassion for the one you are choosing to forgive.  -'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect? The Workbook.

We talked about how hard it can be to forgive someone who has hurt us.  This session was one of the most powerful ones for me.  There were a lot of tears and a lot of opening up and letting it out.  It was mostly family members that needed to be forgiven, namely fathers. :(  It breaks my heart to hear the pain a young girl has from a father being absent.  (I know exactly what that pain feels like).  I'm not talking about the father not being there physically.  I'm talking about the father that is only there when it's convenient, time spent decreasing as the child gets older or another family is started.  A few of the girls talk to and see their fathers on a regular basis, but the pain was from the disconnection.  (Something these fathers are probably unaware of). The tears wouldn't stop and the pain was so real.  I had to stop, wipe my eyes and give hugs.  Some of the testimonies hit home.   I felt it was important to let them know it was not their fault and suggested they try to talk to their fathers or write them a letter.  Only two of the thirteen girls had a father in the home.  A few girls were not ready to forgive or talk to their dads and that was okay.  I made the focus of the discussion on what it means to choose to forgive and the value it can have on your life.  The importance of letting go of feelings of sadness, anger and confusion so it doesn't build up inside and cause resentment and hostility.  We talked about bitter, angry people and how holding on to things affects how you treat others. (Imagine learning that at an early age!)

We dried the tears and the girls acted out scenes from the novel 'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?' and we discussed who each character needed to forgive and why.  I love talking to these girls.  They have an understanding of life that makes me smile!
We ended with our weekly circle embracing each other:
"I am on a perfect peach journey....  I love who I am!...  I love who I'm becoming!
Group hug!!
I left them with this inspiration:

We are never upset for the reason we think we are;
There is always something else going on.
One challenging experience in life will always trigger our old stuff.
That stuff will show up as more confusion, greater difficulty, more pain.
In the midst of our challenges, we must ask ourselves, “What am I really feeling?”
This may lead to the thoughts, “I’m not good enough, smart enough, pretty enough,”
Which all boils down to, “I’m not enough.”
If this personal lie is the center of your challenge, ask yourself,
“When was the first time I heard this or felt this way? 
Who said this or caused me to feel this way?”
Allow yourself to feel once again what you felt then.
Trust that you can feel bad and recover.
When you identify the people, forgive them, and forgive yourself for believing them.
The most important aspect of forgiving, at the start, is the realization that
You cannot lose anyone’s love.
Either they love you and honestly want you happy or they don’t.
Nothing is too terrible to be forgiven even if you are forgiving yourself.
Fill your mind with forgiving thoughts. Speak forgiving words to yourself.
It’s powerful…
You can heal, strengthen, empower yourself with a thought or a word,
just as easily as you can be broken by the same…


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Perfect Peach Journey Continues

Just when I thought the sessions could get no better...  This session was great!  If you walked in the room you would have been hit with tons of positive energy.  The topic of the third session was Self-worth and Values. So many of us were taught to focus on others and not ourselves.  As children we are told not to brag or be selfish.  While teenagers, wanting to be accepted, we may have minimized our accomplishments to avoid appearing conceited or self-centered.  As adults we may have developed a false humility to avoid looking prideful.  We may come to not like ourselves and believe that we don't deserve anything good.  Self-esteem suffers while self-worth is forgotten. - 'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?" The Workbook.
So we started the session off bragging about our accomplishments.  The girls enjoyed talking about their achievements without the pressure of being judged.  We each took a turn telling what makes us special.  The smiles were limitless and we got to know a lot more about each other.
The girls got a chance to act out scenes from the novel, "Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?".  This led to a discussion about how each character feels about themselves.
Then we talked about Values and identified our own.  We tackled the questions "Who Am I?" and "What do I believe in?"  We talked about how understanding what we value helps us to understand why we think and act the way we do.  Then we completed  our vision boards!!  Yes, we each did our very own vision boards and discussed our dreams.  It was fun and everyone got to take home their board filled with the things and ideas that they value.
We also had a surprise guest ... Rashan Ali!  My friend for many years stopped by to share her story.  She talked about the ups and downs of her career in Radio.  She inspired the girls with her testimony about what it means to listen to and trust God.  She also shared her vision board with the girls.  She was great!!
My sister, Torie Evans, who is a social worker and my good friend Tara Brown, who is a graphic designer also stopped in to meet the girls and help out with their vision boards.
We ended with our perfect peach journey circle and I left them with this inspiration:

Afraid To Dream

Dreaming can be frightening.
When you dream, all things are possible.
Are you afraid to dream?
I like to dream
But it can be frightening to imagine that you can have
anything, everything that you want
It’s mind blowing to imagine that there is a place where all your needs are met,
Where all of your wishes can come true;
that you can live the type of life
you have dreamed of without struggle or effort.
Can you imagine doing all of the things you love to do;
being paid for doing those things;
feeling good about what you are doing and yourself.
Is that frightening to you?
It’s frightening to me!
That’s probably why it is not happening!
I am afraid to dream…
Are you afraid to dream?

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Perfect Peach Journey

The girls returned excited about our second session.  I was happy to learn that everyone had completed their homework and journal assignments.  They had the opportunity to look deep within and tell me who they are.  I love their honesty and their willingness to grow. 
In this session we discussed ‘Perception’.  The discussion started with defining perception, understanding what it means and led to why it is important.  My goal was to get them to realize that they have a certain amount of control over how they are perceived.  The examples used were the way they dress, talk, and carry themselves.  We looked at a few pictures from magazines.  One that was very heavy was the picture I showed them of Montana Fishburne dressed very provocatively.   The discussion was about how Montana thought that by following in Kim Kardashian’s footsteps by making a sex tape to become famous was the thing to do to become successful.  The discussion could have gone on for hours.  As the conversation went on they appeared to have a better understanding about perception, how they think they are perceived, and how they want to be perceived as well as how what you do today can effect tomorrow.  We talked about the role models they see and who they want to follow after.  I had a special guest surprise them.  Shanti Das, CEO and Founder of Press Reset Entertainment.  I felt it was important to expose them to the other side of the music industry, a female music executive doing very big things.  They were inspired and amazed to learn about the role of marketing an album. (They thought females in the music industry either sang or starred in videos)  Shanti shared her recent book, ‘The Hip-Hop Professional: A Woman’s Guide To Climbing The Ladder of Success In The Entertainment Business.

We took some time to act out scenes from my novel 'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?' and that led to the discussion on ‘Domestic Violence’ and the signs of it in a relationship.   The real talk was heavy, especially when we talked about the abusive behavior coming from both sides (the male and the female).  Not just physical but emotional abuse.  I had a special guest, Erica Benoit, a celebrity wardrobe stylist come by and join in the discussion.  There were things discussed that was not recognized by the girls as abusive behavior, which was disheartening.  I was moved by some of the experiences at such a young age.  I left them with this inspiration:

When a rock caused major damage to the right side of my face almost causing me to lose my right eye I learned self-value.  When my biological father died and we had never had a real conversation about his absence I learned about forgiveness.  When I became a single mother of two I learned about self-worth and survival.  Of course, I did not realize I was learning until after the experiences and the lessons were over.

Every experience, no matter how painful, traumatic, unexpected, or confusing it may seem, is an opportunity to learn.  At times, we learn about our selves.  In other instances, we learn about others.  We learn what to do, and what not to do.  We learn when to wait, how long we are capable of waiting.  In the midst of the most difficult lesson, we learn the tenacity of spirit and how far it will take us.  At the end of it all, we have developed character.

Always remember, every experience is merely a trip through life’s classroom. Some classes have big, fat, ugly, mean teachers; this does not mean they do not know what they are doing.  In some classes, you will have a great deal of homework.  Good!  You are being forced to study, pay attention, and take notes.  In each of life’s learning experiences, our job is to get the lesson, and practice what we have learned.  What will make the lessons easier is to remember, everything you learn can someday be put to good use, and you will be better because of what you have learned.  No one is ever going to be perfect but if you look to get the lesson from every experience you will grow.

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Perfect Peach Journey

This week was the kick off of the "Perfect Peach Journey Workshops" at actress Terri J. Vaughn's Green Room Actor's Lounge.  I couldn't think of a more welcoming place to have the workshops I have been led to give.  The entire experience was surreal.  As they entered the room and relaxed on the couches I saw myself in their eyes twenty years ago.  Organized with their 'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect? Workbooks and journals in hand, they were ready!  We all connected and the conversations flowed as well as the tears. (yes, I actually cried too!)  This week's theme was Self-Love.  I felt honored that they trusted me and were so open.  I gave hugs and mostly listened as it seemed at times they just wanted to talk.  They shared personal things they had not shared before within an hour and a half of time.  I shared personal experiences as well.  We promised that anything said in the room stayed in the room.  Through the laughs and cries we bonded and our journey has begun.  They thanked me and Terri came in and surprised them.  They were so excited that she would take the time to speak to them.  It was an amazing way to end the first session.      I left them with this inspiration:

No matter what situation you find yourself in; no matter how many times you promised yourself, 
“This will never happen to me again”;
no matter how old you are, how “stupid” you feel; no matter what you think other people will think about you, say about you; no matter how bad you feel, how frightened you are; resist the urge to beat up on yourself, and love yourself.
Go ahead, love yourself right now!
Give YOU a big hug.
Gather yourself up in your arms and rock yourself a little while.  Now look in the mirror and say something encouraging to you.
Try, “I love you no matter what!”  If you are really sincere, you will probably hit a raw nerve.
When you do, you will cry.  Good!  Love has a way of touching the core of the being, and breaking it down to the basic element: LOVE.
You can love yourself into and out of anything.  Perhaps you are where you are because you need a little love.  So before you try to figure out what to do, love yourself.
Nobody can do it better than you!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

'Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?" has a new look...

After an outpour of positive feedback I decided to rerelease the original novel along with the workbook I created for teens.  There were so many life lessons in the original novel that I wanted to reach the pre-teens too young to read the book and decided to create the workbook.  The workbook is divided into seven sessions and can be used with or without the novel.  The rerelease of ‘Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?’ will be available in stores March 1, 2012.  The new novel includes a new look and an excerpt from Tracy Nicole’s next novel entitled ‘Landing’.
Check it out now:

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Clark Atlanta University Book Review

Clark Atlanta University Book Review

Angelina T. Velasquez
Book Review: Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?

Author: Tracy Nicole

         Author Tracy Nicole takes readers on a fictional 180 page journey through some of the trials and tribulations that come with life in her book, Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?
         The story based upon the lives of two young women, Victoria (Torie) and Lisa, exposes the difficulties in knowing when to let go and when to hold on tightly in life. Both are women that want to get ahead in life, but like many people in reality they hit a few bumps along the way – it is then they must find strength within themselves that they were not aware they possessed.
         Tracy expressed a dire need for both men and women to work on themselves in order to reap all of the benefits of life that come from healthy relationships, both intimate and social through the dialogues shared amongst the characters.
         Through this story the struggle of leaving an emotionally and mentally abusive relationship is exposed, as well as the realization that not dealing with situations only allows them to be masked and exposed at a later time.
         Readers will gain insight and new perspectives on issues they or a friend has experienced.
            Tracy steers clear of limiting the issues dealt with in the story to specific ages, sexes or races, however it is a highly recommended read for college students because this is a time when many of the issues in the story are their daily lives, and it is better to learn life lessons before situations become lifetime mistakes.

Check out the book by clicking here: "Who Said Peaches Were Peaches?"

Monday, March 8, 2010

Mentor VS Mentees

Saturday was a special day.  The Ladies of AGU gathered at the W Hotel in downtown Atlanta to introduce the mentees to their new mentors.  We had a great time breaking the ice with interesting games.  We really bonded in a short period of time.  I am sooooo looking forward to the full calendar of events we have planned this year with AGU!  Our next event will be the 'Friday Night Live' to be held on March 26th.  This event is a fun for all!  We will have plenty of fun in the midst of workshops for the girls to participate in throughout the night.  This event focuses on one of the many things we strive to do through AGU, which is to offer a constructive outlet that takes the place of "hanging out" in the streets, engaging in sexual activity or experimenting with drugs.  Let me know if you want to become a mentor with AGU!!

Friday, March 5, 2010

My First Book Signing

WOW! My first book signing! What an experience!! It was simply a warm feeling I got when I entered the dimly lit restaurant. Rare Restaurant seemed to be the perfect place at that very moment in my hometown of Atlanta. Immediately, a photo was snapped as I stood in the doorway staring at a poster-sized framed picture of the cover of a book that I wrote.  I felt great in my peach dress and  it would not have been complete without my leopard Christian Louboutins. LOL! Butterflies surfaced in my stomach and a huge smile was plastered across my face.  As I was greeted by a familiar face, I snapped back into the reality of walking into my very first book signing.  I felt loved when I walked into the back of the restaurant filled with my friends and family who came out to support me with the launching of my first book.  Even a few celebrities came out. I spoke to everyone about my book and why I wrote it.  I am so eager to hear feedback on what people are experiencing when they read my book. The night was filled with hugs, kisses and many book purchases. The feeling was so surreal.  It was a laid back, relaxed environment with nice music in the background and some great food! I signed at least 80 books and no, my hand was not tired!  I could not have asked for a better first book signing.  This first one I wanted to share with people who love and support me and know what I put into writing this story. That was accomplished!  Now, on to the next one.  After working so hard on my first novel, "Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?" I am finally sharing it with the world!

Click here to see more pics  

Monday, February 22, 2010

Great Interview!!

Friday I had a great interview with a young lady from Clark Atlanta for a story for their paper.  It was such a good interview.  She came totally prepared, book in hand.  She had already read "Who Said Peaches Were Perfect?" from cover to cover and loved it. She told me she put it on her favorite reads list and some of her friends have it and are already reading it. Then she disclosed that she saw herself in one of the characters and it made her evaluate her life.  I was really touched that one of my characters had that kind of affect on her. I told her that was why I wrote the book!  Whew! This has been a great start to publishing a book.  I'll post the interview when it is printed.