Posted by: Cindy Downes | September 7, 2007

View the Video: Empty Nest Mom Heads Back to College

You can no longer view the video, but a write up about me on Good Morning America is on the ABC Web site.



  1. Saw your feature on GMA. It was GREAT! I’m so proud of you! Love Carolyn

  2. Well, 8:15, they finally put you on…I hope you got to stay home long enough to see yourself. Coooooool! You looked good, sounded intelligent, and did a great job! I proud of you, you famous person, you! Have a blessed day!

  3. I am here in my home office and just saw your story on Good Morning America. Way to go!

    I have also been exploring some options to re-invent myself and loved your story! Just wanted to congratulate you and let you know the story both encouraged me and made me smile. I have been helping some authors get self-published – about 20 so far- it works great for
    Ministers and others who already have a market for sales since they retain full ownership of the books and all the profits. Basically I facilitate with editors, art, print and bindery services.

    I knew you played a pivotal role in home schooling here in Oklahoma but were unaware of your other “irons-in-the-fire”. Best wishes to you and Bill and your family!
    Bet you get all “A’s” – do it for all of us 50 somethings!

  4. You were awesome!! Thanks for telling me about the segment. I pray all is well with you.

  5. You were GREAT on GMA!!!!!–I am honored to know you. God has great things ahead for you my friend!

  6. I just watched it. You were so cool, calm, and collected, and awesome! I am so proud to call you friend.

  7. I am SOOO proud of you!! It takes courage to go back to school…I don’t think my brain could handle it! You go girl!!!

  8. It is great to see you getting such wonderful recognition and national attention. I think it is a great thing that you are doing and it is awesome that God is using you as an inspiration to others who may be thinking about returning to college or who are on that path already. Best wishes to you and to your daughter in your scholastic endeavors. We are proud of you!

  9. Pretty cool! Thanks for sharing it with us! I looked up at 8:55 and realized it was too late to turn on the tv! I was hoping you would send down the link!

  10. Congratulations, Cindy!! Can I have your autograph?

    You look really old in that picture…. Did you color your hair white and adding some wrinkles to your face and neck for the interview? (just kidding…. I know that’s not you in the picture!) I do wish they had used your picture. I bet it’s because you don’t look a day over 35 and it just wouldn’t have looked as good with the “baby-boomer” story. :o) Bless you.

  11. TV Star, You did GREAT! We are so proud of you! I taped it this a.m. and brought it to work for show & tell! It will be interesting to see what comments you will get on your blog. Blessings galore, Carolyn

  12. What an inspiring story! I am busy with my homeschooled children now, but you are making me believe I will still be able to fulfill my academic
    dreams later. Let’s see, when I’m 57, this baby I’m about to have will be 19–I guess I won’t need a babysitter. 🙂

  13. WOOOHOOO!!! I am SOOOO proud of you! It was so exciting to see you and Shelly on t.v!
    Love you, Lori

  14. I’m SO proud of you Cindy!! Go get ’em girl!

  15. Great article! What favor God granted you in this piece! I plan to follow your steps when my kids don’t need me so much! I pray for you often. Thank you for sharing the article!

  16. CONGRATULATIONS, Cindy, You probably have no idea how many people you are inspiring . I was a Speech and Language Therapist for over 37 years in Los Angeles. When my daughter was a senior in high school I realized I didn’t want to go through empty nest alone, so I started a mother’s support group. That one idea lead me to leaving my career and launching, by myself , Empty Nest Support Services . I also went back to school at UCLA extension and found the writer in me. Baby boomers need role models that there are exciting answers to the question, NOW WHAT. Thank you for your story, courage, and passion.

  17. HI Cindy, i watched the segment this morning on GMA, Good for you!!! it can be done, I did my degree in my 20-s but now am a empty nest person, my kids are 22 and 25. I work in the field of mental health dementia with late stages of dementia, and you inspired me to go back to get my masters. As you know more “baby boomers” are going back to school for many different reasons. All the best, nancy , salem, oregon

  18. I am so impressed! Was disappointed when I realized we were not going to be home to see you on TV , but so glad you sent the email . Wish I could do what you are doing ….and am looking forward to using your ” Checklist ” …..what a great idea .

    NOTE FROM CINDY: The Checklist is available on my website at

  19. Just saw the tv blurb about you! Very neat to see you and Uncle Bill and even a picture of our grandfather on TV

  20. I’m so proud of you! :). I didn’t get to see the GMA spot because we were on our first field trip… Ft. Coffee, W D Mayo Lock & Dam, Spiro Mounds, Kerr Mansion & Museum, and Heavener Runestone due to using a really cool curriculum that you might know a little somethin’ about. 😉

    However, the article you sent was so fun to read — and I’m proud of you for being such a great example! Atta girl!

    NOTE FROM CINDY: Brenda is referring to my Oklahoma History curriculum available on my website:

  21. Very good, Cindy! You brought tears to my eyes talking about your daddy.

  22. PRAISE GOD… that was so GREAT! You are a natural. You looked and sounded great; really positive! I’m so proud of you Cindy!!!!

    Note from Cindy: Nan is the artist who did the artwork for all my book covers including The Checklist available on You can contact her at

  23. Congratulations, Cindy! You did a great job!

  24. I watched you on tape and you were simply marvelous, darling! You looked so great and natural, not at all like you had only had one day’s notice. I wondered, “How does she do it?” and then I remembered that you were an actress in your previous life. We’ll talk more later as I have to get my schedules typed for church and get ready to go to a baby shower. We have a perfect day for it, don’t you think? love, Linda

  25. Beautiful. You sounded so articulate. I remember why I did not like all of the “adult Learners” when I was in school. they were so disciplined…always ready, the best students. Way to go, girl.

  26. I thought they did a great job with your segment! You seemed so relaxed – you are quite a natural. May you be blessed in your studies and get many “A’s”!

  27. Hi! My story is very similar to yours. I quit school and went to work so that my husband could complete college and seminary. I really didn’t know what I wanted to do. After our son was born, I stayed home (loved it) and then home schooled. I loved teaching and decided that I wanted to teach. I went back to school, got my degree in elementary education and have spent the past four years teaching first and second graders. I am now half way through my masters degree in reading instruction. In five year of undergrad and grad school I have received all As with the exception of 2 A- and one B+! I have always been happy with my life and now I am thrilled to be teaching children how to learn and how to live. Our son is in college and doing great – that is the most important part to me! I too still have the same husband. I pray for you to enjoy your journey as I have!

  28. I loved seeing you on your Good Morning America segment. Way to go, Cindy! I wasn’t able to see it on tv, so it was nice to see your segment online.

  29. That was awesome, Cindy! Positive, encouraging – if I wasn’t homeschooling right now, I’d consider taking a course myself! Keep up the good work, and thanks for sharing – Jenna Port, Edmond Home Educators

  30. Congrats! What an inspiring story. I wonder what I will be when I grow up. Have a wonderful weekend.
    Melissa Woods
    momof5 and now in 8th grade with my first college degree is in French Ed, K-12

  31. I really enjoyed reading that and knowing you!

  32. Cindy, your piece on Good Morning America was well done. I am sure you have other baby boomers thinking about taking that big step about going back to school. You are motivating. Expand those brain cells!!!!!

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