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I could never have imagined what life had in store when I left home at the age of 18. From my early years as a receptionist at a prestigious law firm to living in a Christian commune then running a summer camp and conference center, my career has not been about coloring within the lines. I spent 20 years in the music business managing bands and producing award-winning music videos also serving as COO of ForeFront Records -- all while my husband and I raised our two amazing daughters. Looking back through the years, I realized that I survived through equal measures of grit and grace. I embraced these traits and was joined by my husband Dan to co-found The Grit and Grace Project, aimed at supporting strong women . . . and those who want to be. As an author and businesswoman, I've been featured on a variety of media outlets including FOX and CNN as well as ABC, CBS, NBC affiliates. I gain the most positive energy when I'm able to merge my personal and professional passions by helping women as they seek to find their inner strength. My formal education is limited to a high school degree, but I never let that hold me back from accomplishing my dreams while caring for my family. I have always been a firm believer that life challenges should neither defeat nor define you. It was in the busyness of producing award-winning music videos, managing music groups, promoting concerts and serving as COO of ForeFront Records that Darlene raised her two daughters. This unique blend of author, mother, businesswoman, wife, and creative producer has shown her that it is indeed true, “life challenges should neither defeat nor define you.” And just so you know, she wears the tool belt in her family.
Redefining a Woman's Strength, as 'Hidden Figures'

If you have not yet seen the film Hidden Figures, I’m telling you that you really should! This story of three brave females who

I’m at the Grammys and She’s Wearing My Dress!

We are heading into the season of Christmas Parties and New Years Events. You'll be going places that will make you want to shop for something

One Man's Dream Women Can Believe In

At The Grit and Grace Project, we usually write about women’s lives, telling their stories and sharing their vision. But we have found a man

Take It Easy—On Your Kids

So you want to be a great mom. I'm sure there are some days you think the world expects you to be a perfect

5 Tips for Successful Independence

Ladies, whether you are single, dating, married, widowed or divorced, having the ability to live independently is a vital part of life. It's important for every relationship to


Thanksgiving became a national holiday at the height of the Civil War


I have taken two extended European trips, one with a band that I managed and the second with my two daughters. In both trips

After Years of Dating, Should You Keep Waiting?

I recently had lunch at a wonderful lakeside restaurant where my server was a cute, incredibly perky girl in her mid-twenties. Looking at her,


It was Halloween day, and this was the first year my daughter realized it might just be a great event in which she wanted to participate.


I recently traveled through Northeastern Georgia as we headed to the mountains of North Carolina. We have the privilege of enjoying the autumn in

4 Don'ts of Great Parenting For Moms

What not to do for your child: 1. Don’t fight all their battles. They won’t learn to fight for themselves. 2. Don’t fix all their mistakes. Consequences

Can You Have a Fairy Tale Love?

Life’s fairy tale—fact or fiction? I hear the clamor of female voices saying, “Disney lied! There are no princes! There is no happily ever after!”

Learning to Listen to Those You Love, When You Need it Most

I ran out my front door late for an appointment, having grabbed everything I thought I would need. Behind me, before the door slammed,

Is God Out to Get Me?

During my teen years my mother often delivered a final sentence as I gathered my keys and purse and ran out the door to


What does it take to make sure your children realize God cares about every little thing in their lives? Here are 5 suggestions: 1. Make

when someone you love is contemplating suicide

*The reality of suicide has touched the lives of several of the writers at The Grit & Grace Project so we are taking the opportunity to

  Women have changed the world, with their grit and their grace.

Let Them Teach

I have heard the cries of teachers I know, family and friends, the caretakers of our children. I have watched as their passion has


So you’ve just spent hours in the Target dorm room aisles

What My Faith Says About Race

I try extremely hard to take every one of my questions, doubts and confusion to the source of all my life answers- my faith.


Here at The Grit & Grace Project, we want to take this opportunity to share the document that paved the road to the formation of The United States of America. The Declaration

If Only Life Had Photoshop

Standing in the grocery aisle looking at the magazines covers, I find myself pondering. Not on who is divorcing, marrying, cheating, too fat, too