by Dee Delacher

tween-girls-self-esteemHey, Girl Moguls!  Have you ever done something that you really didn’t want to do just because your friends wanted you to?  I sure have.  In fact, I want to share a story with you from when I was eight years old:

My face was getting hotter by the minute.  My friends were totally staring at me.  They expected me to lie so that the girls’ team would win the math competition in class.

My teacher was staring at me too.  He was waiting for me to report my score.

And inside I was battling between doing what was right or making my friends happy.  I opened my mouth and out came a score of 85%, a score slightly higher than the 80% that was screaming back at me.

As my teacher declared the girls the winner, I was mobbed with high-fives and hugs.  Meanwhile, the boys, particularly the one who had corrected my paper, shouted out in opposition.

“She cheated!” I heard them accuse.

My face turned a crimson shade of red as I slid further down in my seat.  My one second of glory in the eyes of my friends had turned into disappointment in the eyes of my teacher, and would soon turn into a harsh punishment from my parents.

I was only in third grade and I was already choosing paths that were going against what my parents had taught me.  I questioned who my friends really were and why lying made them like me more.  How could I stay true to myself and still surround myself with the friends that I so wanted?

That is where this cool program called Girls on the Run comes in.  It is a program for girls eight to thirteen and it was started by a woman who struggled with her changing body and these same dilemmas that she calls “Girl-Box” issues.

We have all dealt with them; whether it be starving ourselves to be “skinny” in the eyes of our peers, trying something because our friends want us to, or even telling a little white lie to our parents in order to do something we know is wrong.  Anytime we do things that we don’t want to do in order to please others, we are stepping into the “Girl-Box” and we lose a piece of our own identity.

Molly Barker, the founder of Girls on the Run, was losing pieces of herself and started running in order to deal with the stresses of being a teenage girl.  Running made her feel beautiful and powerful and allowed her to shatter that box that surrounded her.  She decided that she was going to start a program that would help create a world where girls would never have to climb out of the box and could live peacefully and happily simply being themselves.

Wouldn’t it be fun to get together with a bunch of girls who are all looking for a way out of the box, or better yet, a way to stay out of the box completely?  Girls on the Run is that place.

It is a 12-week program that combines training for a 5k run with self-esteem building lessons.  Each week you will meet with your volunteer coaches and team and will complete various activities that correspond to weekly topics and goals.  There is even a question and answer time where you can get some answers and tips that could help you with problems you are having in school or at home.

Most girls finish the program with the tools to help them stay out of the box by giving them a stronger sense of identity, a greater acceptance of themselves, a healthier body image, and a greater understanding of what it means to be part of a team.

Girls on the Run programs start up in the spring and you can find one in most states.  Just go to to see if there is a program near you.  If not, ask your parent, teacher, or mentor to start one up at your school.  So go find a program and lace-up, so you, too, can stay out of the box!


Dee Delacher is a writer and mother who is passionate about Girls on the Run – and igniting some girl power.

If Life Were an Outfit…Win Some Clothes

Your Life as An Outfit
Your Life as An Outfit

Hey GirlMoguls – we have a friend – Katia Raina , formerly of the Soviet Union and now an author and writer living in New Jersey.  As a girl growing up in a distant land (read more about her here), Katia believed in magic mirrors and the power of words.   She loves GirlMoguls of all ages and wanted to give you a shout out to all of you and post a question to you – read on and be sure to add a comment in the in the sections below.  We’ll pick a winner – randomly, and send them a gift card to the Justice….

Hey girl moguls! I wish there were websites like these when I was a tween! But when I was a tween (about twenty years ago), I don’t think there was even such a thing as a website.

Isn’t it funny how in those faraway ages you are learning about in social studies classes, the times used to move so-o slo-o-wly.  If you look at the earliest known civilization – the Sumerians – in the Middle East – or if you look at the Egyptians, how fast did their change happen? I actually looked it up in a book called “Timetables of History: A Horizontal Linkage of People and Events.” In 3,500 B.C., the Sumerian writing consisted of about 2,000 hieroglyphs, or characters. A thousand years later – the number of characters used went down to about 550. In Egypt, meanwhile, in the year 4,000 B.C. they played harps and flutes. A thousand years later, they moved on to lyres and double clarinets.

I am not minimizing these people’s amazing progress, just saying everything took longer. Or maybe it just feels this way from the distance of many years?

Anyway, do you go through these changes, the way the world does? Do you find that when you were a little kid, you were always pretty much the same person over the years, but now the changes accelerate? Last year, were you super-shy and unsure, and then, did you become this hurricane, involved in everything, a friend-magnet, a science maniac?

I grew up half the world across from you, in the Soviet Union, a country that’s not even there anymore, at least not as a political entity. I’ve gone through all these changes in school. From introverted, scared-of-everything-and-everyone, I went to what my best friend and I gleefully called “the queen of the class” where suddenly I found myself in the middle of every friendship or intrigue you could imagine (please note, I did keep up with my grades at the same time! J) Then, another year passed, and I found myself on the fringes of  the school’s “cool society” again; spawned by my first love, laughed at by people I thought were my “comrades” . . . only I didn’t care that much . . . by then I was preparing for my move to America!!!

Change through life is natural as the shortening and lengthening of days through the year. It’s like we try on these personas as though they were costumes. The boy-crazy me, the driven me, the athlete me, the planet’s protector me, the book-obsessed me, the girl-mogul me. J Then, when we find the accessories we like, we keep them, and move on to another costume, until we construct an outfit that is uniquely ours.

For example, here is what I’ve got so far. If my life were an outfit, I’d be wearing jeans for the adventurist, jeans because I’m neither a doctor nor a lawyer, but I’d have some frilly little lace things and patches of faux leather stuck all over them. I’d be wearing a turtleneck sweater covered with writings and newsprint. Plus, glasses, for the nerd, the college student and the aspiring teacher that I am. Finally, my leather cap, to remind myself of my Soviet past, and my writing J  And my outfit would be smeared with chocolate and dusted with flour all over. Because, well, I am a mom of two, and I happen to love making desert on Friday nights – if I have time, that is J

How about you, girl-moguls? Now, fast-forward twenty years. What do you hope to be “wearing?

Tell us in the comments below and we’ll randomly pick a winner for a $25 gift card to Justice!

And you can read more about Katia at her blog –

Celebrate Earth Day – Plant a Garden

michelle-obama-gardenHey Girl Moguls! It’s Poppy here, and with Earth Day coming up this month, I just wanted to share something cool with you about what Michelle Obama and the Obama girls are doing to go Green! Michelle Obama started the first White House “kitchen garden” since Eleanor Roosevelt and planted a bunch of healthy vegetables in it like lettuce, spinach, broccoli, onions, carrots and peas. This garden will grow food for the entire Obama family and everyone—Michelle, Sasha, Malia and even President Obama—will all help to care for it. Starting a garden is such a great thing to do; not only does it save money on food shopping, but it can be really relaxing to work on and is a great encouragement to eat healthy!

As most of you know, I grew up on a farm so I know a lot about gardening and taking care of plants. If you’re interested in starting your own garden, you don’t always have to start big—you can find a small plot of land in your backyard to begin or, if it’s too cold outside, start growing your plants indoors in plant pots! Wherever you start growing your plants, make sure it’s in a spot with lots of sunshine. There are two different ways you can start your garden: you can either grow them from seeds or from small plants called seedlings. Figure out what kind of vegetables you want to grow and what grows well in your area. Don’t be discouraged if your vegetables don’t grow right away—it takes time! Gardening and farming both require being really patient, so relax and let your plants enjoy the sun!

P.S. Even if you don’t want to grow your own vegetable garden, you can encourage your family to buy locally grown fruits and vegetables. In addition to being fresher and tastier, buying locally grown food helps the environment since food doesn’t have to travel far and waste gas to get to you!

GirlMogul Poppy
GirlMogul Poppy

Posted by GirlMogul Poppy