moJo Mama Shares Her Nuggets

Who? Shares her what?

It started with a Facebook post. Actually, for me it started with the post. It really began with a mother struggling to find an effective, stress-free way to confront some critical issues with her teenage daughters. She figured they might not hear what she had to say if she lectured them. Pretty good figuring, I say. So she wrote them a list, called it “Your Mama’s Nuggets: Read it. Live it. Own it.

Her nuggets resonated with me. As you know by now, because I talk about them all the time, I have teenage daughters. It’s through one of those daughters that I came to know moJo Mama, who usually goes by the name Ann Moran Brainard. But I kind of like my nickname. I doubt I’m the first to call her that.

Ann Moran Brainard, aka moJo Mama, shows us her moJo

My friend, you see, is a purveyor of a New Orleans-style cold coffee elixir called moJo. According to my other friend (Google), the word Mojo came to America via African slaves and is a type of magic charm that contains botanical, zoological, and or mineral curios. At football games in West Texas (Google says), fans chant to the opposing team “you ain’t got no mojo,” meaning you don’t have “the right stuff.”

Well, our moJo Mama has the right stuff. She recently launched her own business selling this amazing stuff (and it is amazing! I first tasted it at a local fair). Currently, she sells it through a store called Grassy Roots in Wenham, Massachusetts; this summer she’ll be taking it to farmer’s markets; and in the not-too-distant future, she plans to bottle it for a wider distribution. So be on the lookout.

But back to those nuggets. Meant for the teenage girls but it’s pretty good advice for those of us way past our teen years.

1. Trust Your Gut. If something doesn’t feel right, it isn’t. If it’s telling you not to do something, don’t.

2. Be the voice of reason. The leader, not the follower.

3. Be in control. Bad things happen when you’re not thinking clearly. (drugs, drinking, boys)

4. YOUR choices will determine your future. Choose carefully. (drugs, drinking, boys)

5. Be extremely proud of who you are/how much you’ve accomplished. Keep up that momentum.

6. Don’t be that girl (or let your friends be that girl) whom boys use purely for their own pleasure and purposes. It’s degrading and will wreak havoc on your self-esteem. (substance abuse, eating disorders, depression)

7. If you’re not being treated with love and respect, walk away. It’s YOU and only you who tells people what you’re worth by what you accept. Learn to value yourself. If you don’t, no one else will.

8. No means NO. Say it with conviction. Be heard. (date rape)

9. Aim high, venture out into the world, carpe diem! The more people you meet, the more places you visit, the richer your life will be. YOU are in charge of your destiny. Make the most of all that life has to offer. BE the BALL.

10. Choose to view every challenge as an opportunity to grow and to learn.

11. “Be the change you wish to see in the world” (Gandhi). Helping others – truly connecting – breeds inner peace, fulfillment and happiness. Find your spark (how you’d like to make a difference) and IGNITE IT!

12. Learn from your mistakes. We all make them. It’s what we do after we’ve made them that counts.

13. Only post/text messages and photos that you’re comfortable sharing with the world, forever. Posts and texts will remain out in cyberspace (and available to prospective colleges/employers) forever and ever . . .

14. You are a young adult not an adult. Doing adult things doesn’t make you an adult. Be patient, there’s plenty of time for the adult stuff. Staying young, doing teenage things is a gift that will end in time . . . value each day of it.

15. Attitude is everything! CHOOSE to focus on the good things within a bad situation. It’s that simple. You can ALWAYS find something positive to help you through any rough patch.

16. We will always be here for you, sweetheart. Don’t ever hesitate to reach out for our help. No matter what time of day (or night), we are here for you! No problem or situation is too big for us to confront AND to overcome! Always remember, you are our shining light and our world. We are SO INCREDIBLY PROUD of who you’ve become.

I told you moJo Mama has the right stuff.




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20 thoughts on “moJo Mama Shares Her Nuggets

  1. Incredible moJo in the nugget list. I’m printing and passing to all I know, teenager through senior citizen and I’m not skipping the male of species.
    Great post, Sara. I’ll be watching for your friend’s moJo to move south.

  2. Priceless nuggets of moJo here! Had I learned and followed #7, it would have saved me years of misery and heartache. This should be required reading for all teens, YAs, and even adults. GREAT post!!

    1. #7 is one that most of our parents didn’t tell us about for reasons unknown (maybe mistreatment of women was accepted? in some form). I agree it should be required reading. I hope it makes its way around because it has a lot of wisdom.

  3. Yep, that’s what I struggled to get my daughter to hear. And as for the adult stuff — you’re not an adult until you’re supporting yourself. Don’t tell us to get out of your life you’re an adult we can’t have an opinion, etc. and then next week call us to say you’re tuition/rent/plane ticket home is due in two days.

    1. Must say, most people I know love mojo mama ann moran. Probably because of #15. Finding the positive in everything and treating people respectfully.

  4. This is so beautifully done! Now I just need to figure out the best way to “deliver” it to my teenager. She does think I lecture too much, so another way to get the message to her is a gift! Thanks.

    1. Print it out and give it to her?? Okay, I know I say this all the time Stephanie, but weren’t we just 16? I probably could’ve used a list like this back then.

  5. Everyone one of those points is so important for ALL of us to listen to and remember. Thanks for sharing this!

    I’ve been struggling with getting the seeds of all that wisdom (that I’ve been planting in my teenager’s brain for years!) to take root and grow. *sigh* Does Mama moJo have an elixir for that? 😉

  6. Incredible list of nuggets and I couldn’t agree with them more. It is so important to instill in our daughters strength, dignity and self esteem so that they can take on life with confidence! I am definitely printing and will share with Madeline. Thank you Sara for yet another inspiring blog. Also wanted to say, I will read your friends book too! Sounds really good and on my kindle already! Coffee again soon….

  7. Wonderful post! I love #7 and wish someone had pounded that into my head when I was younger. I learned that lesson the hard way…and more than once. I fear for my daughter, sometimes, and these are good things to keep in mind, good things to consciously teach her, directions in which to guide her. I’m going to print these as well. Excellent post. Thank you so much for sharing this with us!

    1. You aren’t the first to comment on #7. Unfortunately, even with lessons from our parents and others, we sometimes need to learn the hard way. As parents, we do the best we can. I’m glad you’re going to print my friend’s “nuggets.” Thanks for coming by.

So what do you think?