The Beauty of Different: An Interview with Karen Walrond of Chookooloonks + Giveaway!

There’s a whole wide world of blogs out there and sometimes you come across another one that just plain and simple rocks.  It makes you smile.  It lifts you up.  It inspires.   For me, that blogs was Chookooloonks: a blog about life, love, and the pursuit of all things good in the world that’s chock full of great writing and stunning photographs. After weeks of avid reading, I developed a full out blog-crush and eagerly looked forward to Chookooloonks” daily arrival in my inbox.

Somewhere in there, I discovered that this awesome blogger behind the site, Karen Walrond, had also written a book titled The Beauty of Different. From what I could glean from the descriptions, I was in for a true, inspirational treat that sought to celebrate the innate beauty in everything.



The woman behind Chookooloonks and The Beauty of Different: Miss Karen Walrond

And boy was that hunch right! I sat down and read the book in one sitting, soaking in the beautiful images- both photographic and written- letting them wash over me and settle into my heart. What I loved most was the diversity of people in the book, and how you get a glimpse of their lives and histories in an authentic manner. Even in their portraits, they are 100% real. I mean these aren’t airbrushed and glossy touched up people—you can see their pores dangit! And throughout the book, you get a truly intimate glimpse of  their happiness and pains and joys and struggles, which ultimately lead you to a closer understanding of your own.

The main message of the book is that in each of our individual differences lies great beauty. This concept really resonated with me as a blogger who is dedicated to celebrating the uniqueness of natural hair and I knew that I wanted to capture a piece of this and share it with my readers.

So one morning a couple weeks ago, I interviewed Karen over the phone and had a great conversation with her about the book and beyond. Now, thanks to the awesomeness that is the worldwideweb here it is for you to check out:

Beauty of Different. Interview with Karen Walrond.

I think everyone should read this book.  I really do.  And as I said, I wanted to share it with you, my dear readers, so we’re giving a copy away!  To enter to win, write in the comments what your Different is.  Because no Different is better than another Different, I’ll be picking a winner at random next Monday May 2nd.  Hope you enjoyed to the interview and I look forward to enjoying your Differents!


UPDATE—- contest extended until Friday May 6th.  Keep your Differents coming in!!

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  1. My different is always being truthful regardless of the trends, but speaking this truth in love.

  2. My different is loving people where they’re at. We don’t have to agree on everything and they don’t have to be perfect. We’re all works in progress.

  3. My different is finding a way to laugh through every experience.

  4. Wow. Great post. Thanks for the recommendation. I’ll have Sky Sky submit her “different” comment.

  5. My beauty is knowing who I am and realizing that there is always room for improvement.

  6. My different is to not judge anyone, while allowing and accepting them just as they are.

  7. My different is accepting people for who they are: trusting them, instead of judging first. I wouldn’t want them to do that to me, so I don’t do that to them

  8. My different is LEARNING to accept, all. There are so many ignorant individuals that surround us and aren’t willing to LEARN. Progress and change are inevitable in evolution.

  9. My different is being true to who I am and just being me. Sounds easy, but it’s been a struggle that I’m finally winning.

  10. My different is asking questions and taking time to find out for myself instead of taking things at face value. If the answer is “I don’t know” then I go find out.

    Thanks for the recommendations! I’ll have to check it out. :)

  11. natural sunshine

    My different is choosing happiness even with all the negativity around me.

  12. I have a physical “different”: a conspicuous birthmark on my face. I absolutely despised it growing up; it was all I saw when looking in the mirror. Now I love it.

  13. My Different is my ability to withstand. I may rock and roll and take in water, but when the storm is over, my little ship will still be here, broken mast, torn sails and all.

  14. I have so many differents, I don’t even know which one to pick! LOL! Here are 2:

    My different is my porcelain (some call it “pasty white”) complexion that refuses to tan & either freckles or fries. I’ve finally embraced it instead of fighting it/hating it.

    My different is my super-short black hair (pretty much a 1/2″ all over) that I gel & spike. It gets lots of comments & stares (& an occasional compliment) but it simplifies life this SAHM to a kiddo with multiple medical special needs. More time with her = WIN!!

    Thanks for the chance to enter! I bought this book for my BFF on her 40th birthday, and I’ve been wishing for a copy of my own ever since. Fingers crossed.

  15. Pingback: The Beauty of Different: MY Differents (+Giveaway) | Natural Selection

  16. I have a couple of “differents.” My first is my culture. I am from the Virgin Islands, and I will never forget it. I love my lilting accent, even if it only comes out when I’m talking to family or other Caribbean folks — or when I’m really pissed off. I love that I grew up swimming in the ocean, playing steel pan, listening to calypso and reggae and eating foods that many people consider to be “exotic.”

    Another is my ability to see the bigger picture. In most situations, I’m slow to react, preferring to take the time to ponder the possibilities. I consider the what ifs — and their consequences — before taking a step. And while that generally means I’ll take a little longer to make a lasting decision, it also generally means I’m more comfortable with that decision once it has been made.

  17. I read Psych Mamma’s post and grinned from ear to ear! I understand having so many “differents” that it is hard to choose just one!

    I used to despise my freckles as a child, wishing for them to vanish off my face. And now I adore them, especially as they get dark in the summer months and look like nutmeg on latte:)

    I also love my curves, earned through growing our son, eating my good cooking, and the genitic code passed down from my beautiful grandmother. Took years to learn to love them, and now I can work them with sass!

    Fingers, toes, and anything else crossed that I can get crossed:) Thanks for the awesome giveaway!

  18. Differences is what makes each of us unique!
    My facial features and accent blends with countries I visit. When I am in Mexico people think I am Mexican, Jamaica – Jamaican. I have been asked if I am Ethiopian.
    I have a unfilled gypsy spirit. I would love to wander and live off and on the land.

  19. I love learning and sharing ideas. If I could take at least 1 college course every semester for the rest of my life, I would be a happy woman.

  20. My Different:

    ALWAYS wears skirts/dress, although I grew up a tomboy always wearing pants.
    Employed as a Rehabilitation Counselor working with people having very visible disabilities, but my own disability is very invisible.
    31 y/o Virgin and Proud of it. (My Jesus is prolly proud too since, I’ve never been married).
    Enjoys wearing glasses (I own 23) in public but prefers contacts only when lounging at home.
    Always ends up making friends with the outcasts, but really not outcasted of cliques on my own.
    A very joyful adult, but was a very depressed child.
    I am fully in love with my Saviour Jesus Christ and what He did for me! (Unfortunately, that is becoming more of a different these days, eh?)

  21. Have we picked a winner yet or do I still have a chance? Can you tell I’m excited about this amazing book.

  22. My different: is knowing that yesterday was an opportunity to try and today is an extension of yesterday’s hope, but ANOTHER attempt to prove yesterday wrong…

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