Proceeds support youth in Lottery, Jamaica

Best-Selling Author
Cheri Avery Black
With Jah B Share Their Memoir:

Latest Book! "Loving To Be WE"

Loving To Be WE: Receiving Mountains as Stepping Stones to Cross the Cultural Divide between Jamaica and the USA/Babylon

                 Loving To Be WE:                       Receiving Mountains as Stepping Stones to Cr

Book Summary


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This heartwarming, cross-cultural love story, begins when Alex is a 34-year-old father struggling to raise his sons Moses and Joseph out of poverty in rural Jamaica. In the depths of despair, he receives a vision that a woman from a’foreign is coming to uplift his family. 

Meanwhile, Lainee is a 48-year-old professional in the U.S.A. enjoying friends, business, and travel. After a confusing divorce 15 years earlier, she imagines that someday she is to host a "bed and breakfast" in Jamaica.

Mysteriously,  this unlikely couple meet and instantly bond. Is fate manipulating false hopes or facilitating love? It is up to them to transform mountainous obstacles into stepping stones and realize their dreams.  


  Endorsements (Click on link above for many more.)

...more than a love story, it crosses racial and class boundaries, which all too often limit us, and shows us what an enriching experience it can be...a primer on how to live in the moment, face challenges, and respect one another.

Kathryn “Kitsi” Watterson, Award-Winning Writer, Author, I Hear My People Singing: Voices of African American Princeton, Not by the Sword, Women in Prison, and more, Pennsylvania.


To Get Book(s), click link above.

All proceeds go to assist youth in Lottery, Jamaica.

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Experiencing Life as a "Book of Cheri's"


I paraphrased "Life is just a bowl of cherries" to affirm my stance that "Life happens FOR us, not TO us." Each happening is a gift that  enriches our growth,,,so we can experience life with gratitude and awe. It is from this intention that I share our memoir with you.

Themes in "Loving To Be WE"


Writing: Toni Morrison said, “If there’s a book you really want to read and it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” I’m so glad I did. Perhaps this one will inspire you to write yours.

Growth: My life was immeasurably enriched by bringing life-lessons to consciousness, often infused with new meaning found in unexpected ways that may resonate with you, and contribute to your journey.


Cross-Cultural Relationships and Love: Are you interested in exploring how we handled the isms of race, class, age, religion, language, physical ability, and culture that can derail afffection and respect? 


Island Men: Perhaps you’ve heard negative stereotypes about them. Enjoy meeting some of the many good men...husbands, fathers, sons, and brothers that you’ll be introduced to in this book.

Politics: Personal situations vividly illustrate the global and local pressures and impact on Jamaicans.

The Law of Attraction: Might you be intrigued by the process of manifesting desires? I share my tips.

Romance and Relaxation: Are the uplifting vibrations of One Love luring you? Inside this memoir find a tale to delight your senses and broaden your horizons. 


If these themes interest you, then do jump in—immerse yourself in this compelling Jamaican-American saga.. 



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My Leadership Formula and Vibrant Health, two of Cheri's Chapters in Amazon Best-Selling Anthologies.


To Get Book(s), click link above.

All proceeds go to assist youth in Lottery, Jamaica.

Cheri Lane Avery Black


I love that I was named for my parents’ favorite courting song from the 1930's, Cherry Blossom Lane. Once I married Toney/Jah B, I playfully changed my introduction to 

“I’m Cheri Black, as in Black Cherry.” 

After helping my body re-balance from a diagnosis of Stage 4 lung and uterine cancer in less than three months, I embraced the pen name of Chia Cheri to use when I advocate for a healthy “live-it”—rather than a harmful “die-t.” Thanks to Kriss and Empress Anne for these creative names.

In my memoir, I followed a Jamaican saying If it nah go so, it near go so. 

I acknowledge, for example, that a few memories differ from those of my sisters, many of the characters are composites, and some details are enhanced for your enjoyment even though a few make me blush or weep. 

I jokingly assert, as perhaps Mark Twain did: "I have such a great memory, I remember things that didn’t even happen."

You’ll read why it touched my heart when our older son suggested I use his middle name for his character in this account. Close family members followed suit.  

I call others by middle, created or friend names.

We look forward to learning what stands out for you. Do enjoy our story and share your stories with us as well.

More on Cheri with Jah B:


Raised on a Kansas farm, Cheri Lane Avery Black and her husband Jah B from rural Jamaica host their Topaz Dream Palace guest home overlooking Montego Bay. Jah B also manages an organic farm and several apartments in nearby Lottery, his hometown. Their two sons live in her home of 47 years in Ph­iladelphia, Pennsylvania. 

Click on About WE link above for further details.


To Get Book(s), click link above.

All proceeds go to assist youth in Lottery, Jamaica.

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From Our Photo Albums

First photo in Lottery


Sitting with the canes they have crafted, Jah B and Myrie under Jah B's apartment with their boys, Thursday, November 10, 1994.

The gift of life!


When Cheri asks Jah B to pose for her, he goes to the edge of the Montego River, a stream behind his yard, and offers her water...

"the gift of life! (November 10, 1994)

With her guys the week they met


Cheri, glowing with love for her guys, Jah B, O'Shane., and Russhane., l-r. (Photo taken in Jah B's apartment in mid-November 1994.)

Russhane and homework


Jah B guiding Russhane with his school work. O'Shane with his usual big grin.

Glued together


Cheri and Jah B  on the veranda of the Greystone Lodge in Montego Bay in November 1994.
They find it beyond difficult to be separated.

Parents' yard (home) in Lottery


Jah B's parents upgraded their bamboo waddle-and-daub home and built this board house in Median (a section of Lottery) when Jah B was around 14 years old. Jah B is pictured here walking in the yard in 1995.

The Wedding and Friends

Professional photo


The photographer at Penny's Department Store did well to capture the unique energies of Cheri and Jah B, a week after they were married. 

Making their appearance


Cheri and Jah B coming down the stairs as the marriage ceremony begins. The 34 guests have backgrounds from Jamaica, Nigeria, Liberia, Vietnam, China, Germany, Wales, France, Japan, Grenada, Puerto Rico, Kansas, Missouri, New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. 

The Wedding


Jah B and Cheri during their wedding ceremony. Wendy, her maid of honor, eyes Priestess Tammie conducting a libation. Cheri, who designed and sewed her wedding gown, is carrying a basket of sunflowers (the state flower of Kansas) along with roses (in honor of her Jamaican "friend name" Rosie.)  Jah B is wearing an African-inspired agbada (gown) and fila (cap).. 



Good friend Fullastyle was called that "friend name" ever since he painted it on his mini-bus taxi.



Myrie traveled to Massachusetts on a fiance visa during  one cold winter. Jah B counseled him on how to dress in layers and appreciate the chill.

With Cheri's sisters


  The happy couple with sisters Kriss (l) and Jonne (r).  A drummer friend of Lonny's in the background. Kriss composed a song for the occasion "The Loving Chance," which the sisters led the attending friends in singing. They also crafted programs from materials Kriss had brought, including rice paper covers, each with a tiny rose and sunflower tied together on a gold ribbon across the front. 

Family and Duppies



Jah B missed a three foot snowfall by two weeks, since he came from Jamaica January 24, 1996. It snowed eight inches about a week later and an inch or two the morning of his wedding with Cheri. The snow in this photo buried Cheri's Prius that Jah B is shoveling out of the drifts in front of their home.

50th Anniversary for Cheri's parents


In 1988 Cheri and her sisters Jonne and Kriss (on either side of their parents) hosted a 50th anniversary celebration. Jonne's daughter Dayna is seated beside Cheri and behind Kriss's son Shombi.

Church with Jah B's parents


Jah B, Cheri, and their boys go with Jah B's parents to their Baptist church near Lottery, about 12 miles SE of Montego Bay, Jamaica

Black family reunion in Jamaica


 Jah B's helps organize a family reunion with cousin Winston (top right), Jah B is in the middle with Auntie Lynne, his brother Adrian, front right, and his daughter Karee front left. Jah B and Winston later traveled to the St. Thomas parish on the east coast of Jamaica to meet more relatives.

Jah B's Mother in her yard


Jah B's mother setting on the steps of her home, surrounded by some of her grandchildren in the yard. Can you find Russhane and O'Shane?

Becoming the Dead Yard

The place is truly becoming a Dead Yard as it now includes Alex’s two brothers Omar and Martin, two

  The place truly has become a Dead Yard as it now includes Jah B’s two brothers, two sisters, both parents, a brother-in-law, a baby nephew, and seven other babies buried in cardboard boxes.  It seems that duppies are hovering over the yard in this photo.

Family and Boys' Awards

Jah B's Father


Jah B's father cutting some sugarcane for the family to enjoy.

Cheri and Jean Meet


Cheri meets Jean (the mother of Russhane and O'Shane) at the dance hall in Lottery.

Jah B in Dunn's River Falls


Jah B stood on his head in the swirling Dunn's River Falls, then climbed up to sit in the branch of a tree in the middle of the water near the top of the falls.

Russane with Martial Arts Trophy


Russhane excelled in Vita Saana African martial arts and won many trophies, some nearly as tall as he. Russhane and O'Shane (who also won trophies) trained in the art for several years until they discovered baseball.

O'Shane with Winning Artwork


When O'Shane was in the fourth grade he won a City-wide art contest showing "the future of the telephone." His  art was featured in the Philadelphia Magazine, the Manyunk Art Festival, and on TV.

Selling sugarcane at midnight


One of Jah B's brothers-in-law scraped out a living by selling sugar cane all night in Sam Sharpe Square, Montego Bay

Family and Houses

Jah B and boys with Cheri's Dad


Jah B with the boys with Cheri's Dad in his milo field, in 1997.

Lou, her son and family


Kriss with son Shombii, grand kids, Avery and Annika, and daughter-in-law Sarah.

Lou's guy Twain


Kriss's partner Jim with one of his antennas that he created for a special purpose. Kriss brought this antenna to "connect" the family to him during their ceremony to spread his ashes near a favorite bluff in the Ozarks, MO.

The Board House


As a owner/landlord, Jah B painted the house "smile orange," where he used to rent two rooms for himself and his boys. There are four apartments in the house (not all visible here).

The Block House


Right next door is another house that Jah B maintains and rents out four more apartments.

The Philly House

Alex is up on the ladder repairing the back of the three-story home in Philadelphia.

Jah B was up on the ladder repairing the back of their three-story home in Philadelphia. Friend Donna is in the doorway.

Home Remodeling, Family and Mentors

Alex's Remarkable Remodeling


Once Jah B honed his home repair and remodeling skills, he and Cheri purchased a three-apartment house that was in bad shape. Jah B and contractor friend Lou gutted the place and replaced nearly everything. It was so beautiful that Cheri had no problem renting the apartments. They sold the house in 2014 and used the proceeds for Jamaica expenses.

Alex spackling a ceiling


Jah B became an expert in many skills including tiling, installing and refinishing hardwood floors,  replacing drywall ceilings and walls, spackling, and painting,

Our Topaz Dream Palace


Jah B traveled back and forth from Philadelphia to Montego Bay about every other month for five years while building their dream home. Chheri calls this slow pace "the Jamaica Way."

Katie, Shayna and Lesly


Jonne with daughter Dayna and granddaughter Kaycie. They are such good is so heart-warming to experience their love....even from afar. Dayna and Kaycie live in Utah and Jonne lives in Missouri.

Network Marketing Mentors


Cheri with her WorldVentures Team Leaders, Thell, Eddie, and Roe. She learned so much from them about friendship, motivation, inspiration, vision, perseverance, and spirituality.

The Unemployed Millionaire


Matt M  eight-time best-selling author and highly successful network marketing trainer, invited Cheri to be a contributing thought leader (author) in his first volume of "The Art and Science of Success.," a best-seller. 

Mentors and Friends

Millionaire Author


Robert A hugging Cheri. He authorized her to use one of his mentoring articles on her first website, He is the popular author of "The One Minute Millionaire" and "Multiple Streams of Income."

CEO of WorldVentures


Cheri with Mike A, co-founder of the hugely successful WorldVentures Travel Club.



Longtime friend Ernesto (columnist), Joseph (associate editor), Leona (photojournalist), Doyin (production manager), Cheri (editor), Eric (publisher) and wife Ngosi at a FunTimes Annual Awards Gala.

Multicultural Mentors


Dr. Ione, Dr. Marie, Dr. Frederick, Brenda, and Anita, are all awesome trainers, administrators and Cheri's friends and mentors.

Three More Magnificent Mentors


Laurene, Anita, and Yan coached Cheri in multicultural skills and knowledge, as well as in healthy living and recovery from dis-ease. Give thanks Yan and your Art of Wellness Center staff.

Live-It Coach


This sistren was vital in helping Cheri recover from her body's imbalance (cancer diagnosis). Cheri is forever grateful for her daily attention during that challenging transition.

Family, Citizenship and One Love Experiences



Jah B's younger brother, Adrian who lives in Lottery. He laid all the tile in the Topaz Dream Palace. Great job!

Goose and family


Jah B's cousin Goose, who has a farm in St. Elizabeth, and his grown-up kids.



Cheri and Jonne have lunch with Jah B's sister Valda in the Heathrow International Airport, not far from where Valda lives near London.

Getting Dual Citizenships with USA


Jah B learned every answer to the 100 questions that are included in the test booklet for U.S.A. citizenship. He passed with "flying colors."

With Tamika


Tamika, (gardener, author, photographer and artist) and Cheri at the entrance of the  Ahhh Rasnatango Gallery and Garden.

Ayale feeding a hummingbird


It's such a delight to hold a sugar-water bottle and have hummingbirds come down and feed right out of one's hand. Ayala helped train them at the Ahh Rasnatango Garden.

One Love Experiences with Family



Ahh Rasnatango Gallery and Garden...this must be the most beautiful botanical garden and mountain view that was created out of struggle, strife, perseverance and vision.

Wendy and King Tebah


Wendy is getting ready to shake her maracas made from calabash by King Tebah at the Rasta Village.

With Iza and King Toto


Wendy and David drumming with Iza at the 

Rastafari Indigenous Village

Drumming at the Rasta Village


First Man leading  a chant and drumming at the Rastafari Indigenous Village.

Great place for events

The Montego River Garden is the location of the Rastafari Indigenous Vilage.

 Among the events held at the Montego River Garden that Cheri and Jah B like to attend is "Irits," which is hosted by the Rasta Village on the fourth Sunday of each month.



Queeni~i creates the most healing range of herbal soaps at the Rastafari Indigenous Village.

Tall,Dark, and Handsome

Jah B with pre-teens in Philly


Jah B posing with our pre-teens. Cheri loves their smiles and poses.

Russhane the Graduate


Russhane in one of his formal graduation photos.

Russhane the Chef


Russhane looks up recipes on the internet and turns out some super meals! 

O'Shane the Graduate


O'Shane in one of his formal graduation photos.

O'Shane the Tattoo Artist

Joseph getting his tattoo equipment ready for a client. (See Shane's Tattoos on Facebook and Instagr

O'Shane getting his tattoo equipment ready for a client. (See Shane's Tattoos on Facebook and Instagram). He's really good!

Family fun


Jah B and Cheri playing with the boys and their teddy bears. The palm tree mural is on one wall of the dining room that became Cheri's office.


With King Toto


Jah B with a drum made by King Toto, who is sitting in the background at the Rastafari Indigenous Village.

Sleepyeye and Leticia


Sleepyeye and niece Leticia, from Oklahoma, blessed Cheri and Jah B and their guest home with a special chant and drumming.

The Necktie Jelly Man


Cheri and Sam with Jubi, who sells the best chilled (coconut) sky juice. 

Barry G The Boogie Man


Cheri is honored to meet the famous Barry G "the Boogie Man," famous across Jamaica as a long-time radio host and event MC. He invited her to be interviewed on his show once her book was published.

The Firewalker


Cheri is still am amazed that friend Joe G, WorldVentures marketer, persuaded her to walk across 12 feet of burning , red-hot coals! All she got was dusty feet from the coals.

The Black Panther


Joe T, one of Cheri's main mentors who helped her achieve her "personal Ph.D." in Black Studies and World Social and Political History.

Having Fun

In the Washing Machine


Guest Wendy T from Winnipeg, is posing in the "Washing Machine" section of Mayfield Falls in the western end of Jamaica.

Riding to Calico Jack's


What a fabulous afternoon with Mark, Cindy, David, and Janice. They are near Negril at the Pirate's Shack beach and riding over to Calico Jack's, a tiny island entirely covered by an open bar/restaurant with the best grilled lobster!

Sandy and Nikki


(Cheri gets her hair braided by Nikki in Montego Bay.) Nikki just made Sandy, a guest from Germany, happy with her new look.. (See Nikki's Natural Hair Care on Facebook.)

Sisters with shawls

Here we are modeling the beautiful shawls that Lesly brought us from one of her trips to the Middle

Here the sisters are modeling their beautiful shawls that Jonne brought from one of her trips to the Middle East, Europe and South America

Sisters at Margaritaville, Jamaica


In 1999, Cheri toured sisters and friends around Jamaica. Here they are enjoying the cool breezes on the roof deck of Margaritaville in Montego Bay. A waiter crafted these napkin flowers for them.

Sisters on train in Georgia


A "sisters trip":  Jonne, Cheri and Kriss enjoying their trip to Batumi,  on the Black Sea, across the beautiful country of Georgia. The sisters traveled there to see Shombi and family, as well as to Lebanon, Russia, and Zimbabwe. They also took their father and stepmother to the Grand Canyon on to Mesa near Phoenix, AZ.

Soon Come

With New Eyes...and New Hair


 In December 2012 Cheri was diagnosed with endometrial cancer,  which soon spread and became Stage 4 lung cancer, with less than a 10% chance to live for five years. In a chapter entitled "How Seeing With New Eyes Saved My Liife," Cheri described the lifestyle changes that caused her cancer cells to become undetectable within three months. (Modified and included in Loving To Be WE.)

Celebrating with Kale


 In spite of two chemo treatments, which caused total hair loss, Cheri celebrated with life-saving kale and longer hair a year later when her chapter was published in the anthology "Pathways to Vibrant Health and Well-Being." 

Six years of growth


While Cheri's hair has continued to grow, so has the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of Cheri's life. She say she lives in gratitude. 

Island Hugs

 Alex and Yolanda share a heart-warming hug during one of her visits in Philadelphia.

Jah B and Wendy share a hug during one of her visits in Philadelphia.  

Giving Love to the World


Jah B embracing the Peace Globe at the awesome Ahhh RasNatango Gallery and Garden in the mountains overlooking Montego Bay.

One Love


Cheri and Jah B at the Round Hill Resort, one of the sites featured in the movie "How Stella Got Her Groove Back," which inspired Cheri to write her memoir about her Jamaican journey.

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