• A Queen's Reign,  Blog

    Reusable Bag Trouble

    I’m seriously struggling to use reusable bags. It’s something I want to do! A year ago I made a commitment to start using fewer plastic bags (though I do reuse those and keep them stuffed inside other bags in my house for optimal reuse!). But I just cannot seem to remember to use them! Today I even punished myself for forgetting. Again. What help can you offer me!? Clearly, I’m struggling and I want to do better!

  • Blog,  Health

    Working Out For the Less Than Motivated

    I do not like to sweat. Or get my heart rate up. So I’m sure it comes as no surprise working out – or any physical activity – was never at the top of my to-do list growing up. When my parents forced me to join the basketball team, I did have to lift some weights and running (gross), but it wasn’t until I went to college I finally got into the whole working out thing. See, I was terrified … I mean T-E-R-R-I-F-I-E-D … of the Freshman 15. I didn’t know exactly what caused it and I wasn’t falling victim to it. Naturally, because I’m rule follower who’s pure…

  • Blog,  Health

    Mental Health Awareness: What You Need To Know About Therapy

    The idea of seeking therapy is still a fairly taboo topic for most. They don’t want to think of themselves as a person who’s “so messed up” they need professional help. Though, the Wall Street Journal recently wrote a story about how millennials are much more into therapy than generations before. Go, millennials! I’ve been through several boughts of talk therapy throughout the years with varying results. Some people I outright didn’t like. Others just didn’t seem to get me. Now I have a therapist whom I feel gets me and is also ready to hand out the harsh truth in a way that doesn’t make me feel like an…

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  • Blog,  Health

    Mental Health Awareness: When You’re Off Kilter

    I’ve struggled with Generalized Anxiety Disorder and Depression for about eleven years now. Despite feeling I have probably had these issues most of my life, it was 11 years ago when things I realized I needed to get help. The real struggle in dealing with mental health issues is when you think you’re managing your symptoms just fine and one day you realize you aren’t any longer. During the last 11 years, I’ve had so many setbacks, medication switches and deeply dark days. Maintaining my mental health is an on-going struggle. That piece is the hardest part for me because I’m of the mindset: I took care of it and…

  • Blog,  Health

    Mental Health Awareness: My First Panic Attack

    I will never ever forget my first panic attack. It caught me completely off guard. I wasn’t even actively anxious about anything. I was just sitting at the kitchen counter. It was the scariest thing I’ve ever experienced. Suddenly my heart was racing, I had intense pain in my chest, I couldn’t breathe, I heard a ringing in my ears and it felt like the entire world was sitting on top of my shoulders. I had no control and I felt stuck in some kind of invisible pressure bubble with no way to escape. It probably only lasted about 30 seconds, but it felt like hours. It was absolutely terrifying.…

  • A Queen's Reign,  Blog

    I’ve Always Considered My Personality Detrimental

    Most days I’m a loud, bubbly, giggly, happy person. I’m the kind of person who often feels she’s speaking at a normal decibel and someone taps you and says, “Um, you’re yelling.” I’m always the one who’s voice carries louder than anyone else’s. (Face palm) It’s just who I am. It’s just part of my personality. But I’m very aware of it. And I know most people find it super overwhelming. So I’m typically very careful about rolling it out to people. I want to make sure they are ready for me to take my personality to the next level before I let them see the whole real me. Once…

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  • Blog,  Health

    Helping Your Child With Test Anxiety

    I think it’s safe to say, as a parent, you always want your child to do better than you. This is especially true when I see them behaving exactly like me. My sweet little second grader deals with some anxiety – specifically test anxiety. In school, I had THE WORST test anxiety. I remember in 5th grade begging my mom to write me a note saying I never had to take a test again. My struggles with an anxiety disorder started way back when. I also bit my nails like crazy. (Fortunately, neither of my girls do that!) My little sweetie is taking the NWEA elementary assessment test this week.…

  • Blog,  Health

    I Was Told I Couldn’t Get Pregnant Again. Then I Did.

    When our beautiful daughter was 2 years old, we decided we were ready to try and get pregnant again. It was very important to me for our daughter to have a sibling. Getting pregnant with our first wasn’t as easy as we expected, it took a few rounds of Clomid, but it definitely could have been more difficult. After six months of trying, and inconsistent menstruating, I went to my OB/GYN for Clomid. A couple of rounds of it (and another drug I can’t for the life of me remember) and my doctor seemed perplexed. So he sent me to a fertility specialist. The Fertility Specialist I ended up having…

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  • microblading
    A Queen's Reign,  Blog

    Why I Don’t Think Microblading Is Right For Me

    I am a high maintenance person. This is one of the many things I know very well about myself. I’ve tried, in the past, to deny my higher calling and it’s always ended in disaster. For me and those around me (namely my husband). And so now, when I’m feeling guilty because I’m acutely aware of a high maintenance thing I’m doing, I try to make a joke of it. Mostly so people will still do it while realizing I’m aware of my flaws. 😬👑 But microblading has been on my mind lately. Like a lot. So, I thought I would talk about it. Here’s the link to the gal I’m…

  • book club
    Blog,  Books

    Five Reasons You Should Join A Book Club

    I’m part of a really amazing book club. I mean, really amazing. We meet every two months and I always come home buzzing from the fun. This isn’t the first book club I’ve been apart, some have fallen apart because people didn’t quite understand the expectations or something, but this has truly been a strong group and we’ve been meeting for more than a year now! We stay connected between meetings through our private Facebook group and just began a Goodreads group to keep track of all the books we’ve discussed wanting to read in the future. If you like to read and you’re not part of a book club,…

  • Blog,  Words

    Are You One Of Those Mean People?

    “I hope she’s not one of those mean people…” Those were the words a barista wondered about me in the drive-thru today after she made a minor mistake on the order in front of me. She accidentally gave the customer in the car ahead of me my beverage instead of his. He began to drive away. Fortunately, I had my window down, so I heard her call to him and she then turned to me and yelled, “I’m sorry!” When he backed up, I witnessed the transfer of beverages. Jokingly, when I pulled up, I said, “Oh my gosh, did you try to give him MY beverage?!” We both chuckled.…

  • Blog,  Health

    When Is Enough Enough?

    What is enough? To me, it’s an elusive idea. My general rule of thumb is too much of anything is almost enough. The constant concern about what is enough is visible when we have a party (is there enough food?! Spoiler, we always have so much left over), when I buy Christmas presents (do they have enough to open? Are they going to feel enough magic?) and in my personal growth.  When my oldest was about 2 1/2, I began writing little stories about her. Then when she was about 4, I was overcome with this strong desire to change the world. It was all I could think about. I…

  • Blog,  Health

    How Gaining Weight Helped Me Begin Accepting My Size

    So this post is kinda rough for me. It’s going to get real and raw and open myself up to an area I’ve always been super sensitive about: my weight. The road to body acceptance and weight loss is a journey and it wasn’t until I gained 20 pounds last year, I finally got some perspective. Sadly, I’ve always been the girl who thought she needed to lose 10 pounds. Even in high school when I was 150 pounds, I thought I could stand to lose some weight. I blame the fact that I grew up in the 90’s where waif thin was in and, if I’m being super honest,…

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  • Blog,  Uncategorized

    I’ve Already Messed Up Lent

    Just seven short hours into the Lenten season, I messed up Lent. In fairness, it was 7 a.m. and I had just woken up, but I think the sentiment still applies. What is Lent? Lent is the forty-day liturgical season of fasting, special prayer and almsgiving in preparation for Easter. The name “Lent” is from the Middle English “Lencten,” meaning spring; its more primitive ecclesiastical name was the “forty days,” “quadragesima” in Latin or “tessaracoste” in Greek. (As Queen of Words, I felt it necessary to give you a word history lesson 🙂 You’re welcome.) What I’ve Given Up This year, I decided to do something a little out of the box…

  • A Queen's Reign,  Blog

    The One Phrase Moms Need To Hear More Often

    Maybe it was just me, but I thought after I survived the newborn phase, you know lack of sleep, overwhelmed feeling that won’t go away, I would have a few years to regroup before the teenage years when I would have that feeling again. No? Just me? Okay, carry on. 🙂 But ever since my first was born, I feel like I’ve been on high alert. She has low muscle tone and requires physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy to help overcome those challenges. If you looked at her, you likely wouldn’t even know she struggles. Her pediatrician used to make me cry at every appointment. She was constantly…

  • jenn kampmeier
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Jenn Kampmeier – Founder of Vino Mobile Bar

    We’re talking about wine on wheels with Jenn Kampmeier! The founder of Vino Mobile Bar. She affectionately calls the truck “Vinny.” Kampmeier talked to about how she developed this idea, the obstacles she overcame and her first business at age 7! My First Dollar is hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • casey wright
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Casey Wright: Founder of Ninja Zone

    Casey Wright is a gymnast, turned coach and gym owner who developed a program known as Ninja Zone. A super cool gymnastics fusion program using martial arts, gymnastics, obstacle course training, and freestyle movement. As an entrepreneur, she’s made a name for herself in Indianapolis and across the country. She was named one of the IBJ’s Forty Under 40 this year, created her own podcast The Sports Entrepreneur, and grown her program to 300 franchisees. Casey spoke to me about how she developed the program, what she was forced to learn about marketing and how she turned her energy into ambition and created a national program. My First Dollar is hosted by…

  • indy with kids
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Katy Mann Creator of Indy With Kids

    Katy Mann, creator of Indy with Kids – Indy’s #1 online resource for families, has an incredible story of entrepreneurship, perseverance, and success. During this episode, she spoke to me about how she began this business from nothing, how she sustained it after the death of a child and her recommendations for anyone looking to branch out on their own. My First Dollar is hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • Blog,  Health

    Diagnosed with PCOS

    Last week, I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome). I’ve been considering how I wanted to write about it … then last night This Is Us kind of stole my thunder. 🙂 I’ve been thinking about this blog post for about a week now and hadn’t moved forward because I didn’t know what I wanted to say on the issue. I’m about to get real REAL with you, so if vaginal bleeding makes you squeamish, I’d suggest jumping down to Chapter Three: F*ing Hormones where things get a little less ick factor. Chapter One: My Period My period has always been a little like Carrie at the prom. Heavy and horrible.…

  • Blog,  My First Dollar

    Your Money, Your Marriage with the Queen of Free!

    Cherie Lowe is likely best known to you as the Queen of Free. Her first book, Slaying the Debt Dragon explained how she and her husband paid off $127,000 in debt in fewer than 4 years. Now, Cherie and her husband Brian are talking about how money and marriage are intrinsically linked. In their new book, Your Money, Your Marriage, they discuss the meaning of financial foreplay and how a solid marriage is also built around solid finances.  My First Dollar is hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • trendy in indy
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Trendy in Indy

    Steph Weber is not only making a name for herself in Indianapolis as a social media influencer, but she’s showing her followers what Indy has to offer. Her brand, Trendy in Indy, is a platform to empower women through fashion and beauty. A Butler graduate, who put herself through school working three jobs, also graduated Cum Laude. We talked about how she started her brand, grew it from nothing and lessons she’s still learning as she continues to evolve. My First Dollar is hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • podcasts i love
    Blog,  Podcast

    Podcasts I Love

    About six months ago I decided to join the bandwagon (it seemed everyone was always talking about the podcasts they were listening and I had nothing to add to the conversation) and begin listening to podcasts. I asked around, did some research and have become a faithful follower of these 5. The Five Podcasts I Love The Quote of the Day Show Hosted by Sean Croxton, it’s always uplifting, motivational and I always finish a podcast feeling inspired. Sean shares a quote of the day and a clip of a motivational speaker. After it’s over, I always want to go and do something to better myself or the world. The show is…

  • spinweb podcast
    Blog,  My First Dollar,  Podcast

    Hanging Out on the SpinWeb Podcast

    A few weeks ago I reached out to the president of digital marketing agency SpinWeb because I had begun listening to their podcast. Michael, the president, also happens to be the co-host. I wanted to learn all about how they structure it, the software and their recording studio. Michael and I had a great conversation and he invited me to come in and watch. Then he changed his mind and said he’d like to have me on with them! YAY! He warned it was nothing elaborate, but I didn’t care. I just wanted to see how it was done. Michael shared his co-host Allison’s husband helped them decide where to…

  • Blog,  Health

    What Most People Get Wrong About Anxiety

    Too many people still don’t understand what it means to have an anxiety disorder. If I was able to just turn off the anxiety, I would. If I could just take a few deep breaths and relax, I would. Anxiety disorder is not simple.  Two weeks ago, I was at the nail salon. I just wanted a pedicure and a regular manicure. I have horrible cuticles and if I don’t stay on top of them, it’s really gross. Just trust me. I also wish I could take care of them myself. I try. I fail. It’s my reality. However, on this day I wasn’t able to go to my usual…

  • raw sugar photography
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Shaindel of Raw Sugar Photography

    My friend Shaindel is the owner of Raw Sugar Photography. She’s a successful Indianapolis-based custom photographer specializing in maternity, newborns, and children. I’ve had the pleasure of having her photograph my children and my family. Her work is amazing. She and I met while working as T.V. news producers. In this week’s podcast, she talks about how she learned to be a professional photographer, how she got her name out and advice for entrepreneurs. My First Dollar is hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • Blog,  My First Dollar

    #MyFirstDollar

    This week we dive deeper into my career! How I began making #MyFirstDollar and more about my life as a T.V. news producer. I also share some insight into the biz and answer some frequently asked questions. You’ll also hear 5 career fun facts about me! Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • Blog,  My First Dollar

    Fancy Pants Chastain

    On this episode, we talk to my husband and business partner, Blake Chastain. He shares insights on the sales world, recruiting and his high-level golf lingo (at least it is to me because I don’t golf, mini-golf or have any desire to play sports). Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • career is over
    Blog,  Business

    When Your Career Is Over

    It doesn’t matter what age you are … when you find out your career is over, it’s devastating. I was determined to be a T.V. news producer. That was my goal. My dream. I had so many plans surrounding this job description.  After 5 years in the field, my job was eliminated, my personal life was torturous and I didn’t know where to go from here. This was 2009 and labels meant everything to me. Being a T.V. news producer was my job title goal. Being a news producer meant something to me. I was proud to tell people this was my job and I was determined to fulfill my…

  • Lori
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Lori in IT

    This episode features a fabulous lady! Lori Maxwell is a dedicated Girl Scout volunteer, mom to twins and all around superstar! I first met Lori a year ago when I interviewed her for Avon Magazine. Since then I’ve become friends with this amazing woman and learned about how she found her career in IT and when she received her bachelor’s degree after being in the field for more than 20 years! Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • dream job
    A Queen's Reign,  Blog,  Business

    Rejected From My Dream Job

    In honor of my new podcast launching, I’ll be writing a few career related blogs. Check out My First Dollar! I’ve learned so many things on my career path, but here’s the most important one: your dream job doesn’t exist. You create it. The year was 2007 and my career was feeling rough. Following college graduation in 2004, had gotten a job in my field doing exactly what I had trained to do (be a news producer), left after a year, and had struggled ever since. I left after a year because my live-in fiance who had moved to the city I was working was offered a job back home.…

  • car executive
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Don the Car Executive

    This episode features the first important man in my life – my father, Don Frick. Don is a car executive, but he didn’t start in management. He began his career as a mechanic. His story shows how hard work, persistence, loyalty, and determination can move you to a career you love. I know I’m pretty proud of this man and thought he shared many great pearls of wisdom about how to align yourself with your goals. He began his career at Wiese Buick, moved to Tom Wood Automotive Group and now is working with Button Dodge. Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com.…

  • veterinarian
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Jim the Veterinarian

    This week’s podcast features a man I’ve come to love because he’s my father-in-law! Jim is a well-known veterinarian on the west side of Indianapolis. He retired after running two practices for nearly 40 years. He shares the organization he credits for helping set the foundation for his profitable career and subsequent retirement. Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • exacthire
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Jessica with ExactHire

    This week’s episode features Jessica Stephenson with ExactHire. ExactHire is a cloud-based HR software company or SAS (software as service). Jessica has been wildly successful in her career, is crazy smart and is also my close friend. She also shares who she credits with helping manage her finances. Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • my first dollar
    Blog,  My First Dollar

    Episode 1

    What is My First Dollar all about? Here’s a tour of what you can expect on the podcast! So sit back, put on some red lipstick, and let’s get down to the business of dollar bills! Hosted by Heather Chastain – Queen of Words. Learn more about her at heatherchastain.com. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @heatherchastain or follow My First Dollar on Instagram at @myfirstdollarofficial.

  • female friendships
    A Queen's Reign,  Blog

    Girlfriends’ Guide to Female Friendships

    I love watching shows highlighting female friendships. It’s why I loved Sex and the City and now Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce on Netflix (it’s 4 seasons and over now, so I’m late to the party). The hubs was a little concerned about my interest in a show about divorce, but I told him – that’s just one piece of the plot. I absolutely adore Abby and her friendships and watching how they interact. Their interaction is interesting for three reasons: 1. Female friendships are some of the lost sacred and difficult relationships I’ve ever been involved. 2. It’s wonderfully liberating to know all female friendships suffer from the same problems.…

  • small business
    Blog,  Business

    Market Your Small Business For Less Than $100

    Too many small business owners aren’t spending the time or money where they should when it comes to marketing. How many entrepreneurs have you heard had $0 for a marketing budget? Major mistake. However, you don’t need to spend through your next six months operating expenses to be successful in your marketing. I had the pleasure of showing my marketing skills with a small budget recently and it reinvigorated my desire to help small business. The other motivation is because I’m so tired of seeing small business do it badly. How are they doing it badly? Either they hired a person who is not equipped to handle online marketing or…

  • marketing my church
    A Queen's Reign,  Blog

    Marketing For My Church

    Earlier this summer I was given an opportunity to do something I really love: marketing for my church. For the past 81 years, St. Christopher Catholic Church has hosted a mid-summer festival. I have jokingly called it the biggest non-race event in Speedway. I don’t know if that’s true, but we can just go with it 🙂 Each year thousands of people turn out for our hand-battered fish, carnival rides, casino games and, for the last few years, our beer selection. It’s a wonderful tradition my family has always enjoyed. As a young child, my mom was in charge of handling carry out and we’d help out alongside her. For…

  • Blog,  Health

    How To Help A Suicidal Friend

    This week a friend reached out to me to help her suicidal friend. It was heartbreaking to hear this woman’s palpable struggle with mental illness. I was then immediately concerned about how I could help. I am not a mental health professional. My only experience is my own. I can only explain my journey and what I’ve been through. Immediately, I called my cousin who is a counselor and a licensed clinical social worker. She walked me through how I could be of help to this struggling woman with one important reminder: if she’s suicidal, nothing I can say is going to change her plans, but I can offer her some…

  • low carb
    Blog,  Health

    Low Carb is Terrible for Active Moms

    I always said I would never go low carb. Research shows your brain needs carbs especially first thing in the morning. But 3 1/2 years after having a baby, still struggling to lose weight, it seemed I needed to do something drastic. Sadly, every time I turn around these days someone is saying to me “you need to go low carb” or “go Keto, it’s amazing!” A few women I know have lost a great deal of weight going Keto (they are incidentally also beyond the age 50). My new doctor even recommended it to me. I was still skeptical. Then I saw a video and a picture of myself…