You Do Not Have Permission To Quit!

Mikia Shae Troche – Founder and CEO

What does the word “ENDURE” mean to you? Many of us would define the word as a form of suffering, or going through something to achieve a specific end goal. If you’re a living breathing human being, you are at some point in your life enduring through a storm. For some, it may be a little less difficult than others, which would have a person in the midst of enduring without even realizing it.

On Saturday, June 1, 2019 my spiritual soul was set ablaze from the moment I set foot into the Semi-Annual Enduring Conference, held at the Holiday Inn, in the lovely city of Virginia Beach. Author, visionary, motivational speaker, and business mentor Mikia Shae Troche greeted her conference attendees looking simply angelic in an all-white attire. You could feel the peacefulness in the room, filled with eye-catching  tones of yellow and blue, as encouraging sounds of gospel music played in the background.

I pride myself on being able to pick up positive energy vibes. Every single speaker who spilled their life’s transparency, gave me inspiring levels of goose bumps! I’ve always heard, sharing is caring, yet somehow in the process of sharing, each and every single testimony intentionally gave the room full of attendees, food for thought. Anyone who was in attendance will more than likely tell you of at least one important aspect he or she learned as a knowledgeable take-away. When you can gather together our young millennials, and our respected senior generation at the same table, smiling, chatting, and breaking bread, you’ve accomplished diversity. Vendor stations created a very relaxing experience for those who enjoy stumbling upon something a little special to take home.

Quote of the day: Neisha Himes – G.R.O.W. Foundation

“Your crown matches every outfit, never take it off”

This well-organized event included a wonderful host, comedian Ryheem Johnson captured the audience with his clean cut, and let me add entertaining humor straight out of the gate. His intermittent jokes proved to be just what was needed to change up the mood during the conference. Life is not always kind, healthy discussions of how to step up and endure any adversity being thrown at you is a topic we should all be interested in hearing. Telling a story in mime, or standing on a stage takes courage, but the healing begins way before making a choice to share your life with others. Manny Mitchell spoke enthusiastically on the storm of rejection, how starting a career with no arms proved what we all know to be true….”What GOD has for you, is for you”…

We all have a story, are you empowering others with your enduring journey?

I had the pleasure of a short interview with the founder of the Enduring Conference, Mikia Shae Troche, her spirit of authenticity glowed as bright as any diamond in the swankiest of jewelry stores. Having survived a stroke, being wheel chair bound, amongst other adversities, never gave her permission to quit. This beautiful queen endured every negative emotion imaginable, she cried, she prayed, and then with the help of her loving husband, she got up for the win.

Mikia captured the attention of her audience with a powerful heartfelt speech as she ended the conference. The topic, “You Do Not Have Permission To Quit”, resonated throughout the entire room, as if she were standing on stage with a bullhorn.

Every head nodded in agreement, without blinking an eye….

Thank you, for the amazing opportunity to blog your event, while interacting with your panel of fascinating speakers. Every testimony held value to someone in the room. Bravo Sista!

Honorable Mention: Nicole Armstrong, Juanita Ricks, Ryheem Johnson, Manny Mitchell, Jada Danielle, Jay Harris, Suzette Meeks, Neisha Himes, Shakeya Nesbitt, Tanisha Thompson, and keynote speaker Mikia Troche

Follow Enduring Conference via Facebook, be sure to attend the 2nd Semi-Annual conference on January 25, 2020.

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Enduring Conference, Mikia Shae Troche, Dakota Somerville

 

 

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Teach One ~ Reach One ~ Invest

 

 

Plant the seed, and show them the way…

Nonprofit organizations serve many purposes. Feeding the hungry to name a few, however, nothing stands out more than a community group with a vision to serve our youth. The children are our future leaders, they are our future in a nutshell. Our beautiful brown babies from impoverished neighborhoods deserve every single opportunity of exposure to learn the when, where, and how’s of success.

 

I am truly honored to share with my readership a group of young boys who are truly making a name for themselves here in Hampton Roads, Virginia. They are learning a multitude of important life skills from some very influential pillars of our community. The Young Investors of Virginia Club comes highly recommended for any young man who has a desire to learn about entrepreneurship, real estate, and the beginnings of stock market investment. This newly formed group in my humble opinion speaks volumes to the idea of teaching one, while reaching one.

Young Investors of Virginia Club Mantra:

I am a young investor

I invest in myself

I invest in my community

I learn the generation before

I teach the generation behind me

 

Her smile is infectious, her soul is contagious, her energy is magic, and all the accolades of community merit go out to the founder, Ms. Keyzia. We first met about two years ago, at a summer dinner celebration. She sat across the table from me, filled with her vision, ready to share with the whole world, how she literally wanted to make a change. I was a bit mesmerized at first, and then I began to really listen to what she was saying about the importance of creating opportunities for our young boys to enhance their life skills. It was at that very moment, I knew she was going to embark on something special. Congratulations queen, you are the epitome of motherhood, taking a stand to help children from the lower income and high crime areas of Chesapeake, Virginia, to see a whole new world beyond their wildest imagination.

 

“A sense of pride and opportunity can make a difference”

Many of our young African American boys face an uphill battle on a daily basis, systemic poverty, and the juvenile judicial system are more often not interested in how a young man may be making strides in turning their lives around. Two of the fifteen year old’s in the Young Investors of Virginia Club, are facing unfortunate circumstances. Joining the group created a sense of leadership, they were able to see hope, and began to recruit the younger boys in their neighborhoods to join the group as well. In September of 2018, the group had a fantastic opportunity under the leadership of a licensed real estate agent to host an open house, allowing potential buyers to see their young efforts.

What about our young girls you may ask? Well, as of June 2019, Ms. Keyzia has now implemented a Sister Section to the group. I am certain, Young Investors of Virginia Club will flourish as they grow with love, and support from the Hampton Roads Community!

Contact: via Facebook Page  – Nonprofit Organization

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Young Investors of Virginia Club/ Keyzia Nikole

 

 

 

 

Call Her a Hidden Gem

 

nadine4Nadine Owens, CEO/Owner – My Brothers Keeper

Mothers are a special breed, we make many sacrifice’s in life, to assure that our children are afforded the opportunity to become self-sufficient young adults. But, just for a hot minute, place yourself in the shoes of an amazing queen, someone who has endured the unimaginable, yet she somehow finds the strength to forge ahead. I was first introduced to Nadine during our women supporting women’s meeting, we each shared our own version of inspiration, and personal triumphs. Her voice was soft-spoken, somewhat shy in nature, however, every syllable screamed of a mothers bravery.

“I am a mother of three adults with disabilities, who never gave up”

On February 21, 2019 Nadine Owens was presented with a certificate of recognition award, an honor bestowed upon her by Mayor Robert M. Dyer, of the city of Virginia Beach, Virginia. Her non-profit community organization, Our Brothers Keeper is opening doors locally for any adult with disabilities to participate in life changing activities.

nadine3Mayor Robert M. Dyer, with Nadine Owens 

Our Brothers Keeper, is the brainchild of its CEO Nadine Owens. We all know the challenges of being a mother of three, factor in the obstacles she may have faced along this journey. Caring for two autistic children, and one with severe anxiety, seems like a three person job, on any given day. Not having the resources available to accommodate her plan of care for her young disabled adults, motivated Nadine to create a resource center, where education, life skills, arts and crafts could be utilized. Make your own T- Shirt is just one of the wonderful craft classes offered at the center, along with many more to come. Women are out here making all kinds of magic happen, we salute these hidden gems for taking the imitative to support their community needs.

The “Voice of Hope Book” written by Nadine Owens, will be very instrumental in offering tools to parents of young adults with disabilities. Contact the resource center, located in Virginia Beach, Va., by calling 757-351-1310 during regular business hours.

“You are not alone”

Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Nadine Owens

 

 

 

 

A Dream Girl’s Spectacular Sale

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The Double R Mansion as we know it has a NEW Name—Now known as the Double L Ranch.

Yes, the Suffolk Ranch Is SOLD. The luxurious historic mansion at Double L Ranch, located upon 32 acres of pristine privately owned property in Suffolk, Virginia, was quietly sold & closed on February 27, 2019 by Hampton Road’s very own Queen of Real Estate. This Harvard Graduate does not believe in being average. She will tell you that failure is not an option. Claudine Ellis is a top-notched real estate agent who is sought after around the world. Dream Girl of Real Estate, Claudine L. Ellis, CEO/Broker accomplished the largest residential property sale of her fifteen plus year career. Ellis can take credit for singlehandedly raising real estate values in the rural 23737 area as this was the most expensive home listing in Suffolk.

“This Harvard Graduate does not believe in being average”

Claudine is outstandingly talented and well versed in the area of luxury, residential, and commercial real estate sales. A million dollar home in Hampton Roads usually averages a year on the market from list to close, but our readership shouldn’t be the least bit surprised to know that this queen sold the mansion in record time—less than 90 days.

The mansion itself holds many special memories, as a premier event venue. I’ve heard about the first floor classic billiard room, theater room, and the exquisite white baby grand piano, captured in the lavish wedding portraits of couples from near and far.

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“Nothing speaks luxury like the alluring tone of a baby grand piano”

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Beauty, brains, and a savage beast at what she does, would sum up the challenges Claudine faces on a daily basis with her clients. What I admire most about this real estate professional is her ability to not judge her clientele, anyone who wants to purchase a home can contact her for a property showing, whether it be a huge multi-million dollar mansion, or a simple two-story traditional colonial. As a first time home buyer, you can attend one of her training sessions, affording you the knowledge needed to make a wise decision, based upon your family’s needs.

“In addition to a successful real estate career, Claudine makes it a priority to give back to and serve the community”

I personally support her non-profit endeavors, each and every first class charity event sponsored by DREAM DAP, Inc. has been a huge success, designed specifically for any Hampton Roads single parent seeking home ownership. The mission statement to help single parents with down payment assistance in purchasing their first home, should warm the hearts of any one reading this blog post. Congratulations are definitely in order, Claudine L. Ellis has made her presence known in the real estate world, as a million dollar agent, the one to watch, as well as, the one requested across the globe.

Written by: Dakota Somerville

Edited by: Claudine L. Ellis

Photo Credit: The Double R Ranch, Claudine L. Ellis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Charity Personified With Elegance

 

strawberriesChocolate Dipped Tequila Infused Strawberries

February is the month of love, it is a time when giving comes second nature, the air is filled with decadence and luxury. We find ourselves thinking of others, our heart’s beat to a different drum, charity can also be described as a universal gesture of love. I stopped by to share with my readership all the juicy deets from an outstanding philanthropic event that took place in Norfolk, Virginia, held at the impressively alluring Slover Library, on Saturday, February 9th. A charity with a godly purpose will attract those who support a noble cause. I can’t begin to think of anything more important than lending a supportive hand to a single parent needing down payment assistance, while holding near and dear, a deep desire to become a home owner. Claudine L. Ellis, CEO of Dream DAP, Inc and her team are making it happen.

“HEART FOR HOMEOWNSHIP FASHION GALA 2019”

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Regina Mobley, Queen Claudine Ellis, Quenie Burnz

Hollywood hit Hampton Roads, as each and every guest was greeted with valet parking, and baby it was cold outside. Walking into the venue proved to be upscale upon being welcomed at the door by actor and model Mr. Jack Rose, adorned in white glove attire. Bellissimo, is an understatement describing the ambiance, and elegant décor, I felt so much love in the room as the jazz band played a medley of mood setting tunes. The highlight of entertainment literally flew, twirled, and flipped magnificently above the beautiful architecture, capturing stares from the balcony to the lower level. Can you imagine a beautiful aerialist, floating with the grace of a butterfly? She did just that!

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Hampton Roads has quickly become well noted on the east coast as a mega fashion hub, providing some of the best professional models in the game. I want to personally bow down and congratulate all of the event models for a wonderful job done on the runway. Special mention and all hand claps go out to the one model who turned the catwalk, and staircase into an unforgettable theatrical performance. Screaming bravo…bravo…bravo to model Shawanda Lamb, you my dear are a show stopper, with the epitome of what is commonly referred to as the “It Factor” in the industry.

Shawanda Lamb – Queen of the Runway

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queen

As I buzzed around mingling with the distinguished guest, it suddenly came to my attention everyone was smiling, dancing, chatting it up with one another enjoying all the special moments of the night. This is the foundation envisioned as a successful charity event, hashtag happy people. The V.I.P guest co-mingled with the general ticket holders, which is something special to see, in my opinion. Food galore, delicious edibles made the rounds, one tray after another, filled with crab cakes, bacon wrapped scallops, steak kabobs, fruit kabobs, cake pops, and my personal favorite of stuffed mushrooms. For all the foodie lovers in the room, heaven had officially landed in a scrumptious kind of way!

crabcakes guest

“One thing is for certain, Dream DAP, Inc has arrived in a major way”

Major kudos go out to the DJ, Mr. Dave Champion for the music selections of the night. The media deserves special mention as well, I saw the lovely Ashley Dennis supporting the cause, along with many celebrities, photographers, and lets just say the who’s who tribe of Hampton Roads. We were especially honored to see the prestigious Virginia Beach City Council woman, Sabrina Wooten in the building. I have a very keen eye for celebrity spotting, without hesitation, this freelance writer made her way over to capture a quick video with Patti LaBelle’s exclusive holiday decorator, LaVoris Pace and friends, what a dapper looking trio they were. All V.I.P guest received personal catering with delicacies’, compliments of the Executive Chef from Plaza Azteca restaurant, and jaw dropping Furry Swag Bags complete with unexpected high-end goodies, including fur gloves, exotic soaps, designer glasses, and more. Don’t fret if you missed the 2019 gala, team Dream DAP has already put the wheels in motion for the Heart for Homeownership Fashion Gala 2020…..

“Congratulations Claudine, I deem you queen of the red hearts personified”

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Author: Dakota Somerville

Photo Credit: Facebook, Dakota Vibe, Organixx Photography

Follow: Dream DAP, Inc. via Facebook