My Passion Magazine issue 4 Vol.1


“People Are Important” and that is why My Passion Magazine was born. My Passion Magazine is a friendly place for everyone’s voice to be heard. Our magazine aims to broaden the concepts and horizons of others. We want people to see the accomplishments of what others have dared to dream and how their dreams became a reality. My Passion Magazine is published quarterly and is focused on the tri-county area of Fayetteville, Clayton, and Henry. Many of our writers live within the tri-county area and are writing about their passions. There is much to be seen about the people, places, and events in these three counties. Because we have follows in all parts of the world, you will be able to read articles that will focus on other cities, states, and nations.






Recipe Inside!


Dr. Paulette Stewart

December 2015 - Issue 4 - Vol. 1

Cover and Featured Photos by Vitos St.Rose Photography


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015


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My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 3




Page 5 Note from the Editor

Page 6 Merry Christmas - Ladies of Grace International

Page 7 Silent Night Holy Night –Connie Brown

Page 8 Anna – Dakota Jones

Page 9 ‘Tis the Season to be Jolly’ –Karla Dennis

Page 10 SSS Brigade Social Security Seniors

Page 11 The Importance of Prayer – Gwen Johnson

Page 12 My Christmas Guardian Angel – Sandra Shock

Page 13 Book Nook

Page 14 Motion Picture Geek – Robey Jones

Page 15 Treasure Seekers

Page 17 The Garden Spot - Poinsettia the Christmas Flower

Page 18 Cooking Corner

Page 20 The Light of the World

Page 22 I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas – Mary Lou Kehoe

Page 23 ‘Tis The Season for Networking’ – Chi Chi Okezie

Page 24 Baby Jack’s Story – Brittany Liberatore

Page 25 Mistletoe at Christmas

Page 26 Judi Cakes

Page 28 Wellness - Dawn Causey

Page 29 The Battle Is Not Yours - Mohammad Bolton

Page 30 Fayette County Christmas Events

Page 32 Henry County Christmas Events

Page 33 Clayton County Christmas Events

Editor-In-Chief/Founder: Dr. Paulette Stewart

Marketing Director: Dakota Jones

Creative Director/Designer: Vitos St. Rose

MPM is published quarterly and will focus on local writers, but because we have followers in all

parts of the world, you will be able to read articles that will focus on other cities, states, and nations.


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 5

Find Us:




Dr. Paulette Stewart

From the Editor's desk:

It is that wonderful time of the year! It seems as

if the Holiday Season got here very fast this year.

Although, the older I get, the faster it comes.

I was reminiscing the other day of my childhood

“Christmas Days.” (Those were the days.) I tried

to remember my best and worst Christmas (that

is, as a child). Let me share with you those two


The “Best Christmas” ever for me was when I had

just turned six years old. (My birthday is two days

before Christmas – it could have been worst – it

could have been Christmas Day.) All I wanted

for Christmas was a drum set. Guess what, Santa

Claus somehow got that drum set down the chimney

(that we did not have). I was so excited. I

can still remember that it was red. It had a bass

drum, a little side drum, a cymbal, and most importantly,

a set of drums sticks. I was in heaven!

I was the most excited child that Christmas had

ever seen!

My “Worst Christmas” was when I was about

eight years old. I was such a ‘tom-boy’ (no dolls

for me). My two older sisters had bicycles, but

my brother and I did not. My mom took us to

downtown Atlanta (there were no shopping malls

at that time) to see Santa Claus. When it came

my turn to sit on his lap and tell him what I

wanted, I jumped up on his knee, and with all the

confidence in the world, I said, “I want a bicycle.”

Well, I had asked him; therefore, I just knew I

was going to get it. Christmas morning came

and there was only one bicycle – a red boy’s bike.

My brother promptly ran and got on the bike. I

looked around the tree, but no bike for

me. Boy, was I disappointed. I don’t even

remember what else I received. But very

quickly, my mom and dad said that the bike

was for both of us. Well now, I was really

happy because my brother and I were best

friends and we didn’t mind sharing. (I was

such a ‘tom-boy’ and I was glad that it was

a boy’s bike.) We road that bike all over the

place. We were still riding it even after the

handle-bars came off (don’t ask me how, but

we did).

Those were the days! There is just nothing

like family!

It all boils down to this……..Christmas is the

time we celebrate the Birth of Jesus Christ

and I love to celebrate His birth by celebrating

with my family.

Merry Christmas to all the readers of My

Passion Magazine. You have truly given me

a gift this year by supporting this magazine.

I thank you all.


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

Ladies of Grace


Wishes you


Merry Christmas

touched with

Passion, Wonder



Silent Night,

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 7

Holy Night

Silent night, holy night! A very special baby boy was born

this blessed Christmas night!

I often wonder what the sounds and smells were like that

wondrous night at the manger! The stars were shining

bright, and one took on a heavenly illumination that only

a mighty God could have created. This celestial messenger

shone brighter than the fullest harvest moon and the hottest

desert sun combined.

The sheep, cows, and donkeys must have given the night air

a hint of a musty farm smell. The hay and the grass they

fed on most likely had a wonderful earthy and cozy scent.

The crickets and the night birds must have joined the heavenly

host and choir of angels in “Hosanna in the highest,

today our Savior is born.” Nature must have sung its own

sweet lullaby and praise for the little Baby Jesus. I am sure;

every flower bloomed brighter and smelled better. Every

fruit tasted sweeter and the aroma rose to heaven like a fine

heavenly perfume.

A peculiar group of multi-cultural wise men came to bring

gifts to the little baby. They brought spices, oils, ointments,

and gold that were the finest to be found on earth.

This aroma blended with all the other smells of the fruit

and flavors. The air filled with this sweet vapor and rose

up to Heaven as a praise to God for sending the Savior of

the world. The wise men and their multitude of servants

all came from different nations. They were every shade of

browns (light and dark), different traditions, and customs,

but they all had one common goal - to find this little baby.

They did not separate or segregate, but together, they

achieved what they set out to do! They found this special

child and joined each other in praising him as their Savior,

as their King!

The Christmas feast of a multi-cultural family and circle

of friends reminds me of this special day! Flavors and spices

from all over the world from their native lands come

together on this special day. A typical meal at our

house may be turkey, ham, sweet potatoes with greens

(made the African/American Southern style), and I

will bake German/Bavarian Apple-strudel and make a

savory Sauerbraten. These dishes brings our multi-cultural

family together at the table as we celebrate the

birth of the one and only Savior for us all! Our different

shades and flavors create a similar atmosphere as

the three wise men from different corners of the earth

who came to honor the Christ child!

My entire family and I wish you a Merry Christmas

and a wonderful New Year! God bless all of you! This

special Christmas day Jesus was born to later die for

you and me. Yes indeed, He was born, lived, and died

for all of us every shade and flavor of humanity!

Love and peace always Cornelia Brown


Advocate for the multi-cultural family and

friends, church, and workplace! To book or for

more information email me at www.cornelia. or go to my facebook page

All shades and flavors/Cornelia Brown


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015


by Dakota Jones

I have experienced two great loves

in my life; my wife first of all,

because if I didn’t mention her

she would kill me, and Anna. My

name is Greg Fitzgerald. I will be

discrete about my age, but will

hint that I’m old enough to receive

a social security check in the mail.

My memories of Anna though,

take place a long time ago, when

my hair wasn’t grey and it wasn’t

as hard to take every morning for

granted. I didn’t realize then that

we are only given so many of them.

Feature your book here today!

my dad holding a big yellow dog by

the collar. Mom was sneezing on the

couch, which we later found out was

due to a dander allergy. I was elated

with joy. My very own dog!

was a skinny northern boy that could

sink in a bathtub. In January, Anna followed

me to my neighbor’s house while

I shoveled snow from their back deck for

some extra money.They had a swimming

pool that had been frozen over for over

a month and appeared to be pretty safe

to walk across. I was in the water before

I took my fourth step onto the ice. The

neighbors’ pool wasn’t that deep, but

boy was it cold. I was frozen in fear and

cold as my head went under the water..

A second splash broke the ice, and I

hoped that my neighbors had seen me

through their window and were coming

to my rescue. But alas, it was my sloppy

wet dog. She somehow managed to push

me to the edge of the pool, and I was

able to pull myself out. We both spent

the next week in bed with the flu, but

we were alive.

I was twelve years old, and it was

my favorite time of year. Snow was

falling, the fireplace was roaring,

and football was live on the radio.

Christmas was in the air and Old

Saint Nick was on his way. I was

an only child, and my parents were

well off enough to spoil me rotten

for big events like Christmas and

birthdays. They usually bought me

model trains, cars, and airplanes.

The year before, I even got a bike!

One thing they couldn’t buy me

though, were friends.

I was a little bit more “reserved”

than the rest of the kids my age,

and because my dad was a part

of the U.S. Army, I had moved

into town from across the country

in the middle of the school year.

Needless to say, friends were slim

pickings for me. That is, until


Anna had the biggest brown eyes, and

though there were many occasions that

my dad called her stupid for stealing

food off of the table or digging holes in

the garden, I knew she could see right

through me. Anna was the kind of dog

that walked me to the school bus everyday,

and returned later to walk me

back home. She slept at the foot of my

bed and kept all of the monsters out of

my room. She even saved my life on a

couple of occasions.

Anna was a Labrador retriever, a

natural born swimmer and athlete. I

Anna was not the first good dog this

kid ever had, but she was my best

friend. Because of her go lucky nature,

she enabled me to make friends with

other kids my age. She was always on

my heels, unless someone had food that

she could beg for. I later found out that

my parents had rescued her from the

pound where she would have been put

to sleep that Christmas morning so long

ago. Instead, she became the best gift a

twelve-year-old boy (without a friend)

could have received. It may have seemed

like we saved Anna’s life at first, but in

more ways than one, she saved mine.

I will never forget waking up on

Christmas morning and walking

out to the Christmas tree to find

‘Tis the Season to be


My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 9

Karla Dennis

It’s the Holiday season for 2015!! Are

you freaking out yet? Where did

this year go? As soon as September

comes, I am ready. I have my Fall

decorations out, I have my Halloween

decorations out, and my Christmas

décor is just waiting to be unleashed!

I love the holidays, but for you it may

be different. You might honestly say,

“I hate the holidays. There aren’t

enough carols or funny holiday movies

to make me jolly!”

Let’s take Halloween for instance;

what’s not to be jolly about a ton

of free candy?! Well, it’s not a jolly

holiday for the kids who can’t go, or

for the kids too sick to go. We can’t

leave out the problem of costumes.

When I was growing up we had to

make our costumes; nothing new and

flashy for us. Who wants to Trick

or Treat in some non-store bought


Then comes Thanksgiving; once

again, how can a holiday that celebrates

being thankful with a delicious

turkey dinner not be jolly? It’s not

jolly if this was the worst year you

ever had, or maybe you lost someone

close to you. It’s hard to celebrate

with dinner if you don’t have any


Which brings us to Christmas: one of

the biggest holidays of the year. How

can you not be jolly spending time

with your family, giving and receiving

gifts? It’s not so jolly without family

or money to buy gifts. What a horrible

holiday for any kid who wakes

up with no gifts, or for you to wake

up and the person you love is not

with you.

While I truly believe that the holidays

are meant to be jolly, there is

just so much in life that seems to

dim or remove that joy for us. So,

how do we get it back or find the

jolliness again? I believe I have an

answer for you!

As a kid, there was one Christmas

that looked to be horrible. I remember

knowing, but not knowing, that

this Christmas was going to be different.

My parents didn’t have the

money to do Christmas like usual.

I will never forget the joy of waking

up and having presents under

the tree. Years later, we were told

that some families generously donated

presents to our family. I will

never forget that Christmas! I am

so thankful to the people who made

that holiday jolly. Which brings me

to my answer. When you are trying

to make the holidays jolly for others,

it somehow becomes jolly for you.

I love the holidays because of what

you can do for others. My life might

be a mess and there may not be

much to be happy about or worthy

of celebration, but that doesn’t mean

I can’t bring happiness and celebration

to others. I am never jollier during the

holiday season than when I am doing

for others.

So, maybe there is still hope for this

season, let’s make it jolly. For Halloween,

you can go to the children’s

hospital with treats; or on Thanksgiving,

you can provide dinner for a family

who can’t afford it; and for Christmas,

let’s buy gifts for kids and visit senior

citizens. Let’s get lost in doing for

others, because their joy will become

your joy!

‘Tis the season to be jolly…


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

S.S.S. Brigade

Social Security Seniors

Christmas is a wonderful time of the

year for many, many reasons. One

good reason is that it is a time for

making “memories.” I cannot remember

any memories of Christmas with

my grandparents. I am sure that we

were actively involved with them at

Christmas, but I just can’t remember

(nor can my siblings remember

anything). I thought about how sad

that is for us and for them.

We have great memories about

Christmas with our mother and dad.

Mother and dad made Christmas a

wonderful time of the year.

When I had my daughter, I wanted

to make memories with her at

Christmas time. So, every Christmas

after the decorations were up,

the cookies were baked (yes, I use to

bake cookies), after the presents were

wrapped and put under the tree, and

Santa Claus was waiting on top of our

house to come down the chimney with

a bag full of gifts for my little “darling”

daughter, my daughter and I (it was

just a girl thing) took Christmas Eve

day to go to the mall and just walk

around, shop, and eat. We took our

time and just enjoyed the moment. This

was a “memory maker.”

Now, I have three grandsons, and for

about ten years, we have been going on

a “Nana’s Christmas Shopping” excursion.

We pick a mall; we pick a hotel;

and we pick two days to go spend time

together shopping, eating, and just

having fun right before Christmas. We

spend one night at the hotel (and that

Christmas Holiday

is always fun).

Our dynamics have changed this year, I now

have a beautiful granddaughter. She will have

her first experience in this excursion (good

luck to her). These are “memory making”


Let me just say this, even though my daughter

is married and has a family of her own,

we still take time together for our “memory

making” moments at Christmas. This year,

we get to add our granddaughter……..what

fun! How do I afford to do this, I start putting

money away at the first of the year, just

so I can make memories with my family. It is

worth every penny that I spend.

It is never too late to start with your own

“memory making” moments.

Mrs. Oppenheimer, a retiree, decided to get away from the often inclement weather of New York and spend Christmas

in the deep South of the USA. Being unfamiliar with that part of the world, she wandered into a 'restricted'

hotel and said, “Hi. I'm Mrs. Oppenheimer, and I'd like a room for the next week.” “I'm very sorry,” said the

manager, “but all of our rooms are taken.” Just as he said that, a customer came to the desk, and unexpectedly,

checked out. “How lucky,” responded Mrs. Oppenheimer. “Now you have a room for me.” “Look, I'm very sorry,”

said the manager, “but this is a restricted hotel. Jews are not allowed here.” “Jewish! Whaddya mean Jewish! I

happen to be a Catholic,” said Mrs. Oppenheimer. “That takes some believing.” said the manager. “Tell me, who

was the Son of God?” “Jesus,” she replied. “Where was he born?” “In a stable in Bethlehem..... simply because

some Schmuck like you wouldn't rent a room to a Jew.”

Compliments of the Internet

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 11


Importance of Prayer

Part #4

My prayer is that you have been enjoying

the nuggets of a relationship of prayer with

our heavenly Father as much as I have.

As we begin to come to a close of the year,

I would like to leave you with a few things

that are commanded of us in this relationship:

1. We should have no other Gods before Him.

2. We must study to show ourselves approved a workman, rightly dividing the Word of Truth.

3. Our lives are not our own. We have been bought with a price, the blood of Jesus.

4. The Father is seeking true worshippers; those who will worship in spirit and in truth.

5. Give and it shall be given, give to the Father all that is due Him.

6. Have faith in God.

7. Pray without ceasing.

8. Men ought always to pray and not faint.

9. Lord, teach us to pray.

10. Have faith in God.

11. After this manner, pray Ye.

Take the time to look up these scriptures in your Bible. You may use your Bible dictionary, Concordance,

or Thesaurus. This is your homework.

Out of an effort of study and meditation, I was blessed with this poem:

The Lord’'s Prayer

My Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be Thy name.

Since the day I met you, my life has not been the same.

Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done as in Heaven, so be it on earth.

Your name stands above all names, none can match its’ worth.

Give me this day, my daily bread, food for my spirit and my soul.

Oh, how I thirst and hunger, as if after the purest gold.

And forgive all my debts, as I forgive my debtors.

Teach me true forgiveness, as I feast on your love letters.

Lead me not into temptation, but deliver me from evil.

Help me keep my mind stayed on you lest my life becomes upheaveled.

For thine is the Kingdom, the glory, and the power.

And I’m honored to give ecstatic praise in this your finest hour.

Psalmist Gwen Johnson


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

My Christmas Guardian Angel

Sandra Shock

This morning I was one of the unfortunate

humans that had to go

to work. I needed to be there by

7:00 am, so I left home at 6:20 am,

giving me plenty of time to get

there by seven. It was still dark

and raining so hard, I could hardly

see the white lines in the street.

Some of the stores and homes had

left their Christmas lights on all

night. They very pretty glittering

in the night rain. I was enjoying

the lights when all of a sudden,

I hit a curb, and sure enough,

busted a tire. So, I drove slowly

to a nearby service station that’s

always opens early. Today, it was


I pulled under one of the covered

bays where you pump gas and

tried to think of what I needed to

do. I didn’t have my mobile phone

with me, and it was still pouring

down rain. The station was closed

and not a sole around, except one

truck two bays down. I got out,

went over to the truck, and looked

in the passenger’s window, but no

one was there. I’m always leery of

doing something like that because

you don’t know who’s good or

bad. I, then, went back to my car

and tried to think what else to do. I

decided to walk to the Waffle House

to call my husband, and as I passed in

front of the truck, I saw a man on the

driver’s side (which I did not see before).

I walked over to him, told him

my circumstances, and asked if he had

a mobile phone that I could borrow to

call home. He looked for

his phone, but could not find it. He

said he would be glad to change the

tire for me, but, I hated for him to get

all wet and nasty. I kept insisting that

I could walk to the Waffle House and

call my husband. He insisted that he

did not mind changing it.

As he was changing the tire, I found

out his name and he worked at the

Correction Center, not too far from

where we were. I decided he was a

good guy if he worked there. He works

the night shift, and every morning,

he came to this service station to

get coffee. He said that they were

usually open at this time, so he was

just waiting. I told him that I did

not see him at first and he said that

he did not even see me looking in

his truck. That’s strange, but you

know……………………you can’t see angels.

When he finished changing the tire, I

tried to pay him for his trouble. He

wouldn’t take anything from me. He

said that one day he might need help.

I asked him if I could at least hug his

neck. He said, “Yes, you can do that.”

I hugged his neck and wished him

a Merry Christmas. I was almost in

tears. He was an angel to me. When I

pulled away, I asked God “to bless my

Guardian Angel.”

We don’t always know why some

things happen. I haven’t had a flat

tire in years and haven’t had one

since. Maybe God was sparing me

from something happening down the

road that day, and for that I am very


I do believe in Guardian Angels (not

only at Christmas, but all the time),

and I believe they are watching over

me every day. I believe he was my

Guardian Angel that morning. I believe

God put him there, in that dark,

closed service station, just for me. I

drove back home and got my husband

to take me to work. When we past the

service station, it was all lit up and



My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 13

Book Nook

I have so many friends that have written books and they are all such good reads.

However, I have chosen these two books because of the Season. They would be

great gifts to give during the Holidays!

Coffee talk

Daily devotional

Part two

Dr. Cheryl Minter

This is a book of daily devotions that will always lead you to God the Father. It allows you to have intimacy with

the very one who created you and knows you. As you read this book, you will be inspired and encouraged in your

daily life.

You can order this book by going to

I Love It!

A Christian Woman’s Loving

Thoughts on Marriage

Cornelia Brown

This book is a unique journey that takes a deeper look at marriage. It is a

delightfully funny, yet, passionate way to explore the blessings and struggles of

matrimony by sharing heartfelt anecdotes about her own experiences.

You can order this book by going to


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015


by Robey Jones

Ah. Christmas! What a glorious season to be alive. The

decorated trees, the beautiful lights, and the Georgia snow that

we never get. There’s so many reasons to be happy during the

holidays. The number one reason to be thankful is that God

brought His Son into our world. But another amazing tradition

that I love so much is the Christmas movies! There are so many

great Christmas movies out there. So without further ado, here

are some of my favorites!



#9 #8 #7

Nobody put’s

Classics in the


except for me!

Old School Christmas

The Grinch A Christmas


#6 #5 #4






The Santa





Miracle On

34 th Street

Rudolph the

Red Nosed




The Nightmare



Home Alone


It’s A

Wonderful Life

A Christmas


Treasure Seekers

The Best Kept Secret in Jonesboro, Georgia

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 15

My staff and I are always looking and searching for unique stories of people who have turned their dreams and their passions into

reality. Dakota and I met someone the other day that did just that. Her name is Cheryl Dill. She is one of the owners of “Treasure

Seekers.” This is a store that has everything from the old to the new, from antiques to the modern, furniture, to flowers. In other

words, the store has everything. We

spent an hour in this store looking at

everything. We were intrigued. I saw

things that I had not seen since I was a

little girl. It was such a pleasant experience

that we decided to ask Ms. Cheryl

a few questions about her passion and

her store.

MPM: You said that you and your sisters

started Treasure Seekers together.

Please tell us what caused you guys to

open this store.

Cheryl: Retirement. I know that

sounds strange, but that is the case.

Life's circumstances has brought us full

circle, starting life together under one

roof, and we once again share a home

(sisters are forever friends). Retirement

to most people means it's time to slow

down and enjoy life. We are enjoying

life, but have not slowed down. We

once went on vacation, left the hotel for

a day of play (aka a shopping spree).

When we got back to the hotel the valet

could not park my car (SUV) in the covered

parking lot because we had so much

stuff tied to the top. That was embarrassing,

but only for a second.

MPM: What do you sell at Treasure


Cheryl: That's a hard question because

we will buy just about anything. We have

furniture, glassware, lamps, pictures,

home decor, etc. The most unusual item

we ever bought was a pair of African

headdresses used in ceremonies just because

they were different.

MPM: Do you still have them?

Cheryl: Yes, we still have them. I have

yet to find someone in need of them.

MPM: Where do you get your merchandise?

Cheryl: Aaha! The hunt! Love it! My

favorite part! We like to call it “junktiquing”.

We shop yard sales, auctions, and

estate sales. People sometimes roll up in

trucks or cars full of stuff. There is nothing

more exciting than finding that certain

piece or sometimes a treasure. I love to see

someone else find it also. It is satisfying.

MPM: Are you living out your passion?

Cheryl: Absolutely, I am living my passion!

We have been blessed, for which we

are truly grateful.

Readers, you must go and check out this

unique “treasure.” You will truly enjoy

every moment you spend in the store. You

can find Treasure Seekers at 234 South

Main Street, Jonesboro, GA. https://www.


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

The Garden

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 17

Poinsettia, the Christmas plant, is


popular in many American homes. With

the introduction of long-lasting cultivars,

the popularity of the poinsettia has

increased significantly. It was introduced

to the United States in 1825 by Joel

Robert Poinsett, first U. S. Ambassador

to Mexico who obtained plants from the

wilds of southern Mexico. The common

name for the exotic plant, poinsettia,

came from his last name. Botanically,

the plant is known as Euphorbia


There is an old Mexican legend about

how Poinsettia's and Christmas came

together. It goes like this:

There was once a poor Mexican girl

called Pepita who had no present to give

the baby Jesus at the Christmas Eve

Service. As Pepita walked to the chapel

sadly, her cousin Pedro tried to cheer her


“Pepita,” he said "I'm sure that even the

smallest gift, given by someone who loves

him will make Jesus happy."

Pepita didn't know what she could give,

so she picked a small handful of weeds

from the roadside and made them into

a small bouquet. She felt embarrassed

because she could only give this small

present to Jesus. As she walked through

the chapel to the altar, she remembered

what Pedro had said. She began to feel

better, knelt down and put the bouquet

at the bottom of the nativity scene.

Suddenly, the bouquet of weeds burst

into bright red flowers, and everyone

who saw them were sure they had seen

a miracle. From that day on, the bright

red flowers were known as the 'Flores de

Noche Buena', or 'Flowers of the Holy


The shape of the poinsettia flower

and leaves are sometimes thought as a

symbol of the Star of Bethlehem which

led the Wise Men to Jesus. The red

colored leaves symbolize the blood of

Christ. The white leaves represent his


Compliments of the Internet


with Melissa Jones


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

I love the Holidays – the decorations, the tree, the gifts, the baking, the special

meals, the surprises for people – I love it all. My parents always made

everything seem magical around the holidays, so I thought it appropriate and

necessary to try and do the same for our family. Rob and I wanted to establish

family traditions and make memories that our children can take with

them all their lives. I have such special memories tucked away in my heart…

and they help make this season so very special to this day.



2 tbsp dried basil leaves

2 tbsp dried oregano leaves

1 tbsp garlic powder

2 tsp onion powder

1 tsp ground black pepper

1 boneless beef rib roast (5 to 6 lbs.)

1 tbsp oil

1 tsp salt

1. Mix first 5 ingredients in small bowl. Set aside. Place roast on rack in shallow roasting

pan; brush beef with oil. Sprinkle with salt; coat with seasoning mixture.

2. Roast, uncovered, in preheated 350 degrees oven until internal temperature reaches 130

degrees for medium-rare (1 ¾ to 2 ¼ hours = 20 to 22 minutes per pound) or 140 degrees

for medium (2 ¼ to 2 ¾ hours=22 to 25). Begin checking internal temperature of roast with

meat thermometer 30 minutes BEFORE estimated end cook time. When desired temperature

is attained, take out of oven; cover with foil and let stand 15 minutes before carving.

Makes 12 to 14 servings


My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 19




2 cups self-rising flour

2 cups sugar

1 ¼ cups vegetable oil

4 eggs, lightly beaten

2 tsp cinnamon

2 cups carrots, grated


16 oz. (2 blocks) cream cheese, room temperature

1 cup Crisco

2 lbs. Confectioners (powdered) sugar

½ cup pecans, chopped and toasted

2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Make the cake: Mix all cake ingredients together and bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes or until done.

Cool completely.

2. Make the icing: Beat cream cheese and Crisco together. Add sugar in small amounts until mixture is completely

incorporated; add vanilla and pecans.

Makes 8 to 10 servings

******This recipe makes great cupcakes as well. Just cut the baking time and icing in half. These freeze great,




| My Passion - Issue 4 - December



the World

Since this is My Passion Magazine’s Christmas issue and this is our main focus, we wanted a cover page

that would be outstanding and represent the Holiday Season. One of the staff members told us about his

neighbor who decorated her home with beautiful trees and lights. After he told us all about her decorations,

I knew that I had to meet her. I made an appointment, and off I went!

I met the most gracious woman that I have ever met. Her name is Dawn McGee. We became friends right

away. I could not help but love her. She invited me into her home and told me about her passion for her

Christmas trees, Christmas lights, and all of her decorations.

She had been decorating her home with one tree or more in each room of her house (even her bathrooms

and hallways) for 25 years. “Of course,” she said, “I didn’t start off with this many trees. I think I have

about 14 or 15 now. I just started off with a few and everything just grew.”

She says that she decorates for herself, for her family, and for the guest that frequent her home during the

Christmas holidays. She said, “I know what the real meaning of Christmas is all about……our dear Savior’s

birth. But, when I am sitting looking at all of my lights, I think about Jesus being the light of the world

and that He really loves me. When He came into this world, His light penetrated the darkness. That

gives me more pleasure than anything else. You see, Jesus is the center of my life.”

She has a name for every tree that she has in her home. Let me just give you the names: Radiant

Red Gallant Gold, Chocolate Delight, The Grinch, Winter’s Palace, Aquamarine, Department 56, Down

Memory Lane, Pretty in Pink, Gingerbread Dreams, Radko Mania, Deep in the Jungle, The Color Purple,

Meadowland Memories, Frosty The Snowman, O Holy Night, and Old Fashion.

Not only does she decorate the inside of her home, but the outside as well.

By allowing My Passion Magazine to publish the pictures of some of her trees, she is allowing us to feel the

real meaning of Christmas through her eyes…..He is the Reason for the Season!

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 21


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015


Mary Lou Kehoe

It is hard to believe that it has been three years since I took

one of the biggest steps in my life and moved back to Minnesota

where I was born. It was hard leaving my children and

grandchildren and there were many times that I questioned my

decision. I wondered if I had really heard God tell me to move

and could not see how leaving all I had known for so long could

have been the right thing to do. However, now that they have

all moved to Minnesota as well, I can’t help but see that God

had His hand in everything that happened.

My first Christmas with my sister was wonderful and pretty

quiet without the kids. I was quickly brought into the traditions

of her family as well as the family of my brother-in-law.

We baked cookies with my nephews – they roll out the cookie

dough. We had fun parties with lots of food and most of all

great fellowship. They kept me busy so that my mind did not

wander back to what I was missing in Georgia. And of course,

there was snow.

One of the many things I had missed about Minnesota was

snow. Crazy right? I had missed the change of seasons and snow

at Christmas. There is something about the first snow fall of the

winter that is magical. In an instant the brown grass and barren

trees of fall are replaced with a fresh coating of white snow

that brightens up everything. It is a time when I am instantly

reminded of the wonderful world that God created. It is a time

of new beginnings with a promise of new growth come spring. I

quickly realized that that promise did not apply only to nature,

but also to myself.

As God moved to make a way for my daughters and grandchildren

to join me in Minnesota, our family has expanded rapidly.

They have been adopted into a family with aunts, uncles, and

cousins that they did not know, and their lives have been enriched

because of it. My oldest daughter is soon to be married

and a new grandson is on the way! Our lives have been on a

journey that only God could have planned.

Now we all look to the holidays with a great expectation of

snow and the opportunity of seeing a white Christmas. My

wish for all of you this holiday season is that all your Christmases

be white and that you, too, receive the promises of a new

beginning from God. Merry Christmas!

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 23

"Tis The Season for Networking"

Holidays are filled with vacations, traveling,

family time, parties etc. It can be so

hectic and overwhelming. But, in the mist

of all these whirlwind of activities, you can

still network like a pro, make great connections,

and establish meaningful relationships.

With that being said, do not use the holidays

as an excuse to have your networking

fall to the way side.

Listed below are helpful tips for networking

during holiday activities.

Work Party

Whether you work for a major company or

a small startup, you will most likely get an

invite to a holiday party. Do not trash your

invitation or skip out early. Make it a point

to attend the event with an agenda in place.

Commit to meeting a few new people or

strengthening existing relationships. Share

your "new year" resolutions or career goals

for advancing. Make introductions with

colleagues or co-workers who may not know

each other. Also, try to organize a time

to meet up outside of work to continue the


Community / Volunteer Event

The holidays are the perfect times for giving

back and sowing good seeds of hope and

love. If you are volunteering with an organization

or within your community, look

for ways to expand on your efforts. For

example, encourage your family, friends and

co-workers to take part if they are available

and have not in the past. Reach out to the

organizer of the event (if you are not the

organizer) and ask if there is an extra need

that may not necessarily be publicly known.

If you work for a mid-size or large company,

inquire through the appropriate department

about a matching program or making a donation to your charities.

Social Gathering

Perhaps you, your significant other or a friend are invited to a social

holiday party. It is always a fun time to meet new people, talk about

the latest trends and news, as well as sports and entertainment. In

these types of gatherings, the atmosphere is more relaxed and easier

for connecting. While talking and making conversations, you can

find common interests and shared passions. There is an old saying

that people do business with those they like, trust and know. Even

though you may not walk away with any business, you can establish

a premature relation for future business.

Hopefully, these few and practical tips will jumpstart your networking

for the holiday season. Remember networking is a lifestyle and a

tool for success.

Contact: Chi Chi Okezie,,


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015




Part IV

After Jackson was born and we were left without him, my world turned upside down. Nothing made sense. How

could this happen? Why would God put my body through the exhausting task of growing a baby that was not

going to live? Why would he put the effort into creating a human that would only die shortly after birth? What

is the point of life if you can die after only being alive for two hours?

Which all sounds terrible, I know. And don't misunderstand me here - I will never regret Jackson's existence. I

will never regret carrying him. He is my son and he has changed me forever. I will always be thankful for him

and the opportunity to be his mom. I just wish we could have enjoyed him here with us for a little bit longer.

Determined to find the answer to my question, I scoured my You Version Bible app for a reading plan that

might reveal the purpose of life. I found a quick, five day study plan by John Piper called "God's Glory and Your

Purpose" and figured I would start there. This turned out to be a great choice because John answered my question

on the very first day by declaring this: God created us to display his own glory. (See Isaiah 43:7 & 1 Corinthians

10:31) The point is not to have healthy pregnancies, or healthy babies, or even long lives. Those things

are about us. No, the whole point of every living thing in this world is to display God's perfect, majestic glory.

Our lives are not about us.

Some are only given a couple of hours on earth to fulfill their purpose. The rest of us are given a lifetime. We

have a new chance every waking morning to glorify God. John Piper goes on to say that God is most glorified

through us, when we are most satisfied in him. I am still trying to wrap my mind around all that this implies,

but I do know this: since discovering this truth, my world has been turned right-side up. Things make sense

again. Jackson served his purpose here, and I need to, too.

I don't know what circumstance, or season, or stage of life you might be in. You may already know and live this

idea. But, if you don't, I hope that this truth will transform your life, as it has mine. You want to live life to the

fullest? Enjoy every day? Love life no matter what you are doing? Then live your purpose. You were created to

glorify God. That's it. That's the whole point.

Brittany Liberatore

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 25

Story of Mistletoe at Christmas

Nigel's business trip had gone quite well, but he was ready to return home to the warmth of his family. Bristol

airport, on the other hand, had turned a tacky red and green; the loudspeakers blared annoying renditions of once

cherished Christmas carols and ancient pop songs.

Nigel enjoyed Christmas and took it very seriously, and being slightly tired and irritable, he just wanted to get

home. He approached the check-in desk humming a carol quietly to himself in an attempt to keep his spirits up.

He began to check-in his one suitcase when he saw hanging mistletoe. Not real mistletoe, but it was very cheap plastic

with red paint on some of the rounder parts and green paint on some of the flatter and more pointed parts, that

could be taken for mistletoe only in a very surreal type of way.

With a considerable degree of irritation and nowhere else to vent it, he said to the girl at the desk, “Even if we were

married, I would not want to kiss you under such a ghastly mockery of mistletoe.”

“Sir,” replied the attendant politely, “look more closely at where the mistletoe is.”

“Ok,” muttered Nigel, “I see that it's above the luggage scale which is the place you'd have to step forward for a


“That's not why it's there.”

“Ok, I give up. Why is it there?” snapped Nigel irritably.

The attendant quipped: “It's there so you can kiss your luggage good-bye.”

Compliments of Internet

Have the time of your Life!

A cruise! A Resort! A Hotel!


Elaine Tinsley

Travel Agent

Earn As You Travel



| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

A few months ago, I was in a market in Buckhead. As

I walked through the store, I met a lovely woman who

was giving away samples of her product, Judi Cakes.

I sampled several pieces. They were delicious. She

had made her passion a reality. Her cakes would be the

perfect Christmas gift for those office workers, bosses,

friends, neighbors, etc. You know, the people you really

need to get a nice gift, but don’t know what to get

them. These cakes would be perfect. However, the cakes

are perfect for any occasion.

Judi said that she started her business because of

friends that owned a small local produce market in the

Atlanta area. They were contemplating bringing in new

food products, namely a cake. Judi told them that they

must try her cranberry cream cheese pound cake! To

which they replied, “Bring us a sample!” And we are so

glad that she did. Needless to say, they put it in their


She said that she had been baking since she was old

enough to stir batter. Her earliest baking memories

go back to about second grade when she made apple

crisps from a very popular 1950s boxed mix. By fifth

grade, she baked from scratch using her mother’s Betty

Crocker Cookbook. Her mother found no joy in cooking

because her family of seven devoured the fruits of

her kitchen labors within minutes of sitting down at the

dinner table.

Judi found that she enjoyed the baby cakes or 4” cakes.

While researching baking pan options, she happened

upon a rectangular pan with six wells for 4” angel food

cakes. It appealed to her as the perfect way to create vendor

samples. After turning out the first baked batter, she

fell in love with the cakes’ irresistible charm. It was adorably

CUTE! It was just the right size to give as a unique

and tasty gift, or treat, without sabotaging anyone’s eating

plan, which so many currently appreciate.

She followed the Weight Watchers eating plan for over

ten years, and understood the importance of moderation.

It seems that the older she got, the more aware

of healthy, all natural, and moderate eating choices she

became. A small sweet indulgence goes a long way now.

Judi Cakes are available in larger 7” and 9” rounds on

her website. During holiday seasons, the 7” can be found

in Whole Foods Markets in the Atlanta area.

She has so many delicious flavors; because of space, they

cannot all be listed. Here are just a few: Apricot, Apple

Caramel, Blueberry Orange, Caramel Sea Salt, Chocolate

Chunk, Cranberry, Ginger Spice, and Lemon with a Hint

of Rosemary, etc.

To find out more about these delicious cakes and how to

order go to her website: (Please note

that there is NO “m” at end, it is just co and not com).

A 15% discount is available to Passion Magazine readers

with the code JC15.

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 27

My Passion Magazine suggest getting, Dr. Paulette Stewart’s

book, Ladies of Grace, as a Christmas gift! Order today and

receive an autographed copy, just log onto

Order your book today!


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015


Dawn Causey

You are what you eat? That's what my doctor says and

there's a lot of truth to that! During the holidays we love

to embellish in our favorite dishes. When incorporating

fruits and vegetables into your diet, it's good to have a

variety from the colors of the "rainbow" and know how

they benefit your health.

Yellow and Orange

Let's begin with our yellows and oranges. Carotenoids

provide the color in these fruits and vegetables. Citrus

fruits such as mangoes, pineapple, carrots, and yellow

squash help boost your immune system and visual properties.

Oranges have antioxidants that help reduce heart

disease and certain types of cancer.

Red, blue, and purple

Red, blue, and purple fruits such as strawberries, blueberries,

and grapes contain antioxidants that reduce cell

damage, cardiovascular disease and age-associated memory

loss. Lycopene provides the red color in tomatoes,

watermelon, and red grapefruit. They, too, can reduce

the risk of many cancers, especially prostate cancer.


Never run from your broccoli, spinach, and green beans!

The chlorophyll that give them their deep green color

helps the skin and helps eliminate toxins from the body.


Onions, garlic, potatoes, bananas, and mushrooms are

power packed and can help lower blood pressure and


As you can see, many fruits and vegetables have overlapping

benefits such as reducing cardiovascular disease and

the risk of developing certain types of cancer. There are

many other benefits of eating foods with various colors

and they also make your meal look very appealing. Be

sure to incorporate these foods into your diet on a daily

basis so that your body can get the vitamins, minerals,

and nutrients needed.

So next time you’re at the farmers market or in the produce

section at your local supermarket, be sure to "taste

the rainbow" and your body will thank you for it!

Dawn Causey

Host of Remarkable Essence WebTV &

Radio Show

Founder of The Essence of a Woman:

Health, Wellness & Empowerment


My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 29



Mohammed Bolton

Yolanda Adams eloquently wrote a song entitled, The Battle is Not Yours (It’s the Lord’s). If you get an opportunity,

please listen to it as it will bless your soul. So often, as believers, we fix our lives upon that same theme. Whenever

trials or challenges present themselves, we stand strong on the belief that God will uphold His word and tear

down any stronghold that rises up in our lives. Friends and family, alike, will call or message us that “the battle is

not yours!” And to hammer the point home, they will say, “In Jesus’ name!” You know what I’m talking about. As

a matter of fact, you just remembered the last time you said it or heard it said.

Well, I have news for you today. This battle is absolutely yours! It’s all yours and no one can do it but you. Being

healthy is as challenging as “working out your own salvation.” It’s tougher than the Bar Exam. It’s more taxing

than the Navy Seals training. It’s more exhausting than the Boston Marathon. Simply put, there’s no challenge in

the world that compares to being healthy. It is a 24-hour, 9-days-a-week deal. It has to be a conscious, grueling effort.

That’s my challenge to you today. Look at how far you’ve come on your serendipitous knowledge of fitness. Embrace

that, but let it now be history. Discover something new about yourself. It’s time to discover your creative side in

the kitchen. Ugh! I know some may have said that. No one enjoys eating healthy all the time; however, there are

ways you can do it without it feeling like work. Research foods that are high in fiber, low in carbs and sugars and

tasty. I wouldn’t advise pilfering through the grocery store tasting their fresh vegetables, because that may be a little

more eventful than you’d hope for. But I do want you to try apps like Calorie King, which will help you find foods

that are not cantankerous to your goal. Recipes are everywhere, so share some of your TV time with research. Cook

foods that will last a couple of days so you won’t have to cook every day. Stay away from pasta, breads and sugary

foods/drinks. Keep a journal and feel free to share some of your discoveries and testimonies. You can email me at so I can celebrate with you. Until the next time, embrace the battle.


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

Christmas Events 2015


Henry, Clayton, Fayette

Fayette County

Downtown Christmas Parade/Tree Lighting/Visit with Santa and Mrs. Claus

JOIN US FOR A BIG DAY on...........

Saturday, December 5, 2015 at the Gazebo on the square and along the sidewalks in Downtown Fayetteville.

The 6th Annual Downtown Christmas Parade starts at 5:00 pm, followed by Fayetteville's Tree Lighting Program

which will start immediately after the parade.

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 31

Sponsor and Advertise with US

I hope you are enjoying My Passion Magazine. It has been a

great honor for me and the staff to bring it to you each quarter

I hope that of 2015. you have My enjoyed first thought My with the magazine was just to run four

Passion Magazine. It has been a

great honor editions. for me and However, the staff we have had such good response from people

to bring it to you each quarter of

2015. My wanting first thought us with to continue the the magazine into the year 2016. Of

magazine was just to run four editions.

However, course we this have magazine had such is free online. So, for us to bring you My

good response from people wanting

to continue Passion this magazine Magazine into in the 2016 we are asking our readers to become

year 2016. Of course this magazine

is free on sponsors line. So, and for us advertisers. to bring If you can make any contribution, it will

you My Passion Magazine in 2016

we are asking for donations from be greatly appreciated.

our readers. If you can make any

contribution, it will be Just greatly log onto appreciated.

Merry Christmas and

Happy New Year Merry to you Christmas all. and Happy New Year to you all.


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

Clayton County

Friday, December 11, 2015

YULE LOG CELEBRATION - Join us for an evening outdoors filled with holiday cheer. Enjoy music by the

Morrow and Forest Park High School Orchestras, refreshments, face painting and ornament making. Then follow

a candlelit path through the woods to a bonfire where you will find storyteller, Barry Mann, painting pictures of

holidays past. The evening will be complete with attending children searching a wooded hillside for the fables Yule

Log. This event is FREE and provides a shuttle service from Babb Middle School.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

BRUNCH WITH SANTA - Interact with Santa and enjoy games, arts & crafts, and breakfast from Chickfila from

11am-2pm at Carl Rhodenizer Recreation Center.

Friday, December 18, 2015

CROSS CULTURAL WINTER CELEBRATION - This program will increase awareness of how the holiday season

is celebrated in various cultures, such as Christmas, Hanukah, and Kwanza. Story teller, arts & crafts, games, and

light refreshments will be provided. FREE event from 6:00 to 8:00pm at Virginia Burton Gray Recreation Center.

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 33

Henry County

Saturday, December 3, 2015

The City of Locust Grove and Locust Grove Better Hometown will sponsor their annual “Christmas . . . in the

Grove,” on December 3, in Downtown Locust Grove. The free event features a parade, entertainment, food, train

rides, a rock-climbing wall, crafts, and the arrival of Santa via the Locust Grove fire truck. The festivities are from

10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The Christmas parade begins at 10:00 a.m. Downtown merchants will hold an “open house”

for Christmas gift shopping.

The 3rd Annual Gingerbread House Contest in Hampton is scheduled for Saturday. Deliver your house Thursday or

Friday for judging. All ages welcome. Pre-built houses or build your own houses are allowed. Each house will receive a

ribbon. For more information, call Candy Franklin, Hampton Main Street director at (770) 946-4306.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Henry County will usher in the holidays with the 7th Annual Heritage Christmas Festival to be held on Saturday, December

12, 2015, from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m.., at Heritage Park in McDonough. The park will be transformed into a festive,

holiday wonderland. Radio Disney will be playing the latest tunes from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. Heritage Park is located at

101 Lake Dow Road, in McDonough. Call Henry County Parks and Recreation at (770) 288-7300, or visit the web site


November 27- December 30, 2015

Holiday Light Spectacular by Christmas Décor

Over 3 million lights! Come drive through winter wonderland! There will be rides, games, and prizes! (To ride you

must purchase a wristband.)


| My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015

2669 Hwy 42N, McDonough GA 30281

Visit us on the web at:

My Passion - Issue 4 - December 2015 | 35


David Buckner






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