A Special Book Signing for the Freshman 15 Survival Guide

Saturday October 18th was a magical day…

It was my very first book signing event!


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

On a glorious afternoon I joined forty inspirational women and their daughters for a lovely luncheon hosted by my beautiful friend Taline Saad. Taline is a spectacular woman and a truly scrumptious mom who always blesses those around her with her beautiful smile and generous soul and this event was no exception.  If you’ve read “The Go Giver” by Bob Burg and John David Mann, you’ll know exactly what I mean.

Photo Credit  Edo Tsoar

Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Taline’s gentle loving care was reflected in the beautiful setting and her desire to celebrate inspirational women through every detail of the event. Taline’s cousin Nora, the owner of Aslan Catering prepared a  gorgeous and truly scrumptious feast…


Photo credit Alexandra Milora @2014 All rights reserved


Photo credit Alexandra Milora @2014 All rights reserved


Photo credit Alexandra Milora @2014 All rights reserved

While her friend Maria. owner of  Pure Petals Flowers, prepared  stunning floral arrangements to grace every table….


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Taline even ordered a special cake for this amazing day and made sure to honor my partner Anne Newsome who could not be present because she lives in South Carolina…

Photo credit Alexandra Milora @2014, All Rights Reserved

Photo credit Alexandra Milora @2014, All Rights Reserved

By far the most rewarding and uplifting part of this special event was meeting the women in attendance, every single one of them inspirational in her own way and a beautiful role model for the young ladies present.

One of these women, and fellow honored guest, was renowned author Gladys Matar.


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Gladys is an accomplished author and well recognized throughout the Arab world for her courage in pulling back the veil on some of the most corrupt aspects of society in greater Syria. She shares this through beautiful prose and poignant letters in her new book “Syrian Stories”.  I enjoyed some privileged time with this powerful woman and look forward to many more stimulating conversations. You can find out more about this truly exceptional woman on her website at gladysmatar.net


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

It was an honor to share my new book and precious insight with the women in attendance, and especially the young ladies, most of them high school seniors or new college students.


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Several of these young ladies who just started college confirmed how challenging it is to establish and maintain healthy habits when trying to navigate all that a college freshman is faced with. “It’s so much harder than I thought!” is something I hear time and time again when I speak to new college students.  Though we had a few laughs about this all too serious matter, I was humbled by their exited response to “The Freshman 15 Survival Guide” and the news of the upcoming launch of our membership site “Beyond the Freshman 15”.  Beyond the Freshman 15 will offer success-minded college students a vast array of tools to support them in their decision to go against the grain and commit to healthy living throughout college and beyond.


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Two of my daughters shared this special time with me, Alexandra my high school senior, and Sabrina my baby 🙂


Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

As a new author I feel deeply blessed to have been honored in such a way by my beautiful friend Taline. Taline believes passionately in me and in my mission to keep college kids healthy and empower them to become successful members of our community. I look forward to sharing more about this exceptional woman who in recent years taught herself everything she could about business management and turned her husband’s company, Opulent Remodeling and Construction, inc. into one of today’s most successful local businesses.

Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Photo Credit Edo Tsoar @2014, all rights reserved

Is there a special person in your life you would like to celebrate? Someone who inspires you to be your very best?





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  1. Congratulations! What an incredible accomplishment. Although I’m a few years beyond college, I look forward to the continued inspiration and tips.

  2. Oh wow what an amazing thing, your first book signing! You look gorgeous and I love the shot of you with your girls.

    • Thank you Kimberly! It was a beautiful day and I’m so excited I could share it with 2 of my girls. I missed my third but she assured me she was there with me in thought. My oldest was so proud and is looking forward to being an ambassador for the new membership site next year when she heads off to college 🙂

  3. What a lovely event in your honor and Congratulations on your book! I have some friends with College Freshmen and will be sharing the book with them.

  4. I agree with Kim!! The book signing is exciting, something I truly hope to have one day and you and your girls looked gorgeous!! Writing is a serious passion of mine!

  5. Congratulations on your book! That is quite an accomplishment.

    My mother inspires me. She has been volunteering at a free health clinic for years.

  6. That’s SO cool, congratulations!! I want to celebrate all the special people in my life!

  7. Wow, Congrats!! My parents are very special to me and they truly do inspire me to be the best I can be and I love making them proud, even thought I’m an adult now.

    • Thank you Karen! I completely get what you mean about your parents and wanting to make them proud mo matter how old you get. I feel the same way about my parents. They are one of my greatest blessings and I never want to stop celebrating them through the way I live my life, and pass on their legacy to my children.

  8. It looks like a beautiful event with gorgeous flowers and delicious food. Congratulations on your book!

  9. Congratulations! That is such a wonderful accomplishment.

  10. Congrats! What an accomplishment! Beautiful party too!

  11. What a beautiful party. Congratulations! I want to celebrate all the people in my life. Especially my husband, kids, and best friend.

  12. Congratulations on your book, such a great topic and so needed for girls as they head on to college. I still remember my dad teasing about the Freshman 15, thankfully I had long established healthy habits and never gained it!

    • Thank you Ellen and congrats on being able to hold on to your healthy habits. Every time I talk to college kids I hear the same thing, “It’s so much harder than I thought it would be!” I truly hope we can make a difference and support kids who want to stay healthy both with the book and the new site 🙂

  13. What a phenomenal day! Congrats to you and the new book! Gosh my daughter may need it – she is a sophomore in high school and really becoming more aware of how healthy choices can affect her life, her body, and her school/career.

    • Thank you Lynsey! Your daughter sounds like a wise and mature young lady, especially if she is already realizing how choices she makes about her health may impact her success in school and later in her career.

  14. What an inspiring event. Such amazing women for these girls to use as an example.

  15. Oh wow, congratulations! You look gorgeous and glowing! Wishing you much success on such an amazing accomplishment!!

  16. This is so neat that you were able to enjoy such a wonderful book signing event. She made that a beautiful day!

  17. Amazing! Looks like everyone had an awesome time! What an accomplishment!

  18. Valerie I am simply thrilled for you! It’ a great accomplishment and to be so embraced by friends is so very special. It was a gorgeous event…the pictures are stunning. And I’m so impressed at the value you have added to these young women’s lives…and there will be so many more to come. That’s really saying something…..

  19. So excited for you and Anne 🙂 The event looks beautiful and amazing! The food looks so good and you looked beautiful. xoxox

  20. Congratulations. Seems to have been a really rewarding experience.

  21. Sounds like a wonderful day! congratulations on your book!

  22. Congratulations on your book. What a beautiful and special event. Everything looks lovely.

  23. Congratulations and what a great feeling it must be to have been honored like that.

  24. Valerie – Congratulations on your book – you must feel so proud and happy. What wonderful friends you have, that looks like a day you’ll always remember.

  25. Hello
    Congratulations on your accomplishment. Its good to know that you have enjoyed first book singing ceremony. All the pictures are very nice and you are looking awesome.

    For me my mother is one in my life I always want to be with and celebrate each moment of my life. Who is there in my hardest and best times. She is such an amazing lady full of faith and good heart, who is always ready to help others. I wish she be blessed with health and long life.

  26. What a wonderful event, and how precious to have a friend like Taline. Your book is a great idea, wish I’d had it when I went to college! Thank you for letting us share in your special day. I love your dress and jewelry, by the way! 🙂

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