Tammy Helfrich

Life begins right where you are.

Who inspires you?

I recently wrote a children’s book. Honestly, it took me by surprise, and it still sounds weird to say it! It wasn’t something that I had planned to do.

The inspiration came from this incredible man, Al Andrews.

I heard him speak at the Quitter conference in September. You can view my notes from his inspiring talk here.  He wrote a beautiful book called The Boy The Kite and The Wind. The proceeds from his book go to his organization, Improbable Philanthropy, to help fund projects all over the world. I love that! I had already planned a similar concept to help a specific organization with an upcoming project I am working on. He got me even more excited about the possibilities!

During his talk, I got the idea to write a children’s book to compliment the project I had already started. It was not something I would have ever expected.

It was scary for me to even think about it. Being a Mom, I have certainly read hundreds of children’s books, and could easily think of some great ones. That’s when fear typically sets in.

What in the world would I write mine about?

Will it go well with the other project I am working on?

Would they need to be similar or related?

Could they be completely different?

Can I really do this?

Who am I to write a children’s book?

However, instead of freezing up with fear, I did what I have been learning to do more of.

I waited.

I thought about the idea. I brainstormed. And then I just let my mind continually think through it.

The idea didn’t come right away. It usually doesn’t for me.  I was really struggling with a concept. It took about a month, but then one day it hit me! The idea came to me completely out of the blue. I was on a plane and suddenly the words and story just started flowing. It’s still crazy to me how that works.

So, I wrote it down. The first draft. First drafts can be rough, but I really liked the idea.

I was inspired by Al. But what happened next was even more inspiring to me.

I came home from that trip very excited about the book. The first people I read it to were my sons. What better audience than the ages of kids who would read a book like this?

The verdict?

They loved it!

Since I am their Mom, I wasn’t surprised, as they are pretty supportive of me. But, you never know what six and nine-year olds will think. :)

The next day, my youngest son came to me with his notebook. “Hey, Mom! I want to read you the story I wrote.” I was blown away. I had inspired him to write a story that he was thinking about. A few hours later, my older son came to me with his own story. They were incredibly unique and representative of their personalities.

That really inspired me! My kids watched me take a step out of my comfort zone. I was showing them that they can do anything they put their mind to. It’s such a simple thing, but I tend to forget how our actions speak so much louder than words.

I have also asked a few close friends and writers to read through the book, and I have gotten some really good suggestions and feedback. I’m in the process of working with a brilliant new illustrator to make this book come to reality.  You will be hearing more about these projects in the months ahead.

So, who inspires you? I’d love to hear from you.






  1. Great job, Tammy! I was also very inspired by Al’s talk a few months ago at the conference. Can’t wait to see what you do with your book!

  2. I agree! Al Andrews story and book inspired me too. That’s so awesome that you wrote a children’s book too!

  3. I adore Al Andrews. Next in line is Manny Martinez of Hello Somebody. He’s set the bar high and given me a great model for our non-profit.

  4. Inspiration is contagious. 😀 Love it!

  5. Tammy, you inspire me. Whenever I read something you’ve posted on FB or heard something you said in our bible study, I was inspired. You are one of those people I have met that I have always wanted to get to know better. You seem to be like a long lost sister. You are usually reading, which I love. And, the best part is that you are usually reading things I would enjoy reading too. I didn’t realize you had a blog until recently. Now I can read all of your inspiring thoughts. I have always thought you and I have similar interests, except for one. You are much better at follow-through than I am. So now you have inspired me to move forward on a project today. . . Any project of the 100 I have started. I have oh soooooo many ideas, but not enough follow-through.

    • Wow. Thanks, Debi! That is so incredibly sweet. We definitely need to get together for coffee. I’m glad that you were inspired to move forward on a project. I am really focusing on that as well. Hope to see you soon!

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