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I'm Sonja, 47, Scorpio (we rock), wife, mom to two, sister to an older sister and younger brother. Terrible housekeeper and cook, yet I "run" the household, pretty well, I think, in spite of my flaws. The kids call my calendar the bible. Raised Episcopalian but have fallen away from the church for many personal reasons. Had my children baptized but they have not gone to church, religious ed, etc., much to my family's chagrin. Which is part of the reason I have designated myself as the black sheep of the family - everyone else in my family is very religious. It's just not for me.

Anyway - I love to watch good TV, good movies, read good books whenever I have a chance. I have zero tolerance for "reality" TV. I teach art to grade school students in an after school program 5 days a week and I love it. I've been told repeatedly that I should be a writer or blogger but I don't have the guts. Afraid of the trolls. Which is why I admire you, Carmen - you just put it out there and move on.


Carmen, you lost me when you posted you have a black belt in Must Thai. They don't award black belts, they award 'poprajits' and you have to have had a significant number of competitive fights. What else have you exaggerated? Keep it honest, be authentic -you have a lot to offer and there's no need to embellish.


Hi, Bea. Since you didn't use a valid email, I thought I'd reply to you here. I do have a Black Belt in Muay Thai. It was awarded from Linxx Academy, under the direction of Master Chai and I am certified under the Thai Boxing Association of the United States.

Thank you for your email.


Oh, and it's Muay Thai. Not Must Thai. And the only mention I can find of poprajits is at a school in LA (http://www.kidpowermartialarts.com/ourSchool.html) which I'm assuming is the one that you/your child is affiliated with, and I've not seen that term of braided arm bands used in the 7 years I trained. And, I will assure you - I most certainly did train, and I did earn the Black Belt. Again, thanks for reaching out.

M Rees

Bea, I too have trained at Linxx Academy and they have a belt system there, as many American academies do these days. Carmen put in the effort, did all the work to pass testing requirements, and displayed ability to the satisfaction of the owner and instructors. If you are offended by the belt system they use there, I recommend you take it up with their office. They have produced many competitors, Shawn Yarborough and Brandon Vera are a pair of well known allumni.

Perhaps next time inquire instead of accuse, you'll sound less foolish.

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  • Carmen Staicer is a whirlwind of energy and execution, who never sleeps and drinks way too much coffee. She works from home as Social Media Programs Manager for SheKnows, and is the mom to six kids, most of whom play instruments, sing or dance and all of whom are much smarter than she will ever be. In other words, her house is never ever quiet or still. A concentration of asthma, food allergies, spectrum disorders and learning disabilities means that she spends an awful lot of time second guessing herself and Dr. Googling, as well as learning to cook everything the family might like to eat. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, boxing (she has her Black Belt in Muay Thai), sleeping, exploring coffee shops, photography, ballet class and cooking. She excels in being a smart mouth and has her major in sarcasm, with a dual minor in BS studies and avoiding laundry.