Real Life Real Solutions

IMG_0708Received a copy of a pamphlet today entitled, “Real Life Real Solutions” from a very reputable company that specializes in helping individuals live well.  This includes healthy eating and exercising.  As I read through the pamphlet, I was disappointed to find pictures that reflected only one ethnicity.  Given the fact that the company has a number of multiracial clients, there were no pictures to reflect this.  Since their multicultural clientele is not reflected in the pamphlet, wondering if the company is making a subliminal statement that it does not consider this an important business driver?  If the ethnic group that is represented in the pamphlet is their only client group, would the company be as prosperous? 

Any thoughts?  Comments welcome.

My Blog! Your Blog!

imageBlogs are personal.  Most can agree.   When we feel passionate about something, blogging can be quite therapeutic.  It is quite a magnificient tool for relieving stress; for sharing experiences; for teaching; or simply thinking out loud except in written form.  Each one of us has unique insights to put forth.  We do so with simple text or we add visuals – a great way to bring our stories alive.  Each day we learn.  As a new member to the blogging community, I look forward to learning from and being exposed to such wealth of that which is written.  Just as the good book inscribes, yes, “it is written.”  Truly, I am equally excited to share.  We are fortunate to have this huge arena of the learners and the educators at our feet.  I expect to take full advantage of such power.  The power of the blog!

From Rain to Love

IMG_0721Woke up yesterday morning with family on my mind – family living at a distance – Russellville, KY, to be exact: an uncle recuperating from shoulder surgery. We got in the car, set the GPS and headed out. Left Atlanta around 7 a.m. and started our journey. Light rain turned into a downpour; rotating back and forth. Traffic and weather turned the trip into an additional two hours of travel time. Good conversation kept things lively and helped to pass the time. The views were breathtaking especially as we drove through the mountains. Regardless of challenges along the way, this was to be a mission to visit relatives, spread some love and cheer and ultimately make a difference in someone else’s life. The surgery prohibits my uncle from driving so we stopped to pick up lunch before driving to their home. This allowed all of us to sit down together and enjoy a meal and good conversation. Since my aunt cannot drive, I drove her on errands she had postponed for a while. As we drove away later that evening, we left them standing in the door with big smiles on their faces and lots of gratitude. Even though it rained on us going and coming, the love sandwiched in between made it all worthwhile. Would not have changed a thing. They were happy at the care and consideration we showed them and we were equally as happy for having had the opportunity to make a difference in their lives.  It gave us joy and a sense of purpose.  Take the time to spread some love – even on a rainy day. It was the most gratifying 650 miles of travel from Atlanta through Tennessee to Kentucky and back.  Travel is a wonderful thing.  Family is a beautiful thing.  And love and happiness are the best things of all!    

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Rise and Shine!

Grand Canyon (3)Rise and shine. Stretch to another day of exploration and anticipation. Are you an early bird? Are you a late sleeper? Either is fine just be sure to incorporate into your daily travels a bit of movement. Move with grace or move with fierceness or move with tons of energy. Either way – just move. Whether you are traveling to your workplace or traveling to walk the Grand Canyon – stewarding your health is key to enjoyment or success in either indulging. That walk in the park or around the block or even the treadmill will mean much as you go through your day needing to rely on a healthy body to perform. We hear all the time that the body will perform to a higher degree when we exercise it, feed it properly and treat it with care. Well, we heard correctly. It is true. Quite a fundamental statement but “be good to your body and it will be good to you.” Repeat that a few times to yourself. And whatever, remember to move – that body of yours!

You Can Go Home Again

imageYes, you can go home again.  Just returned from a visit to “the country” as we like to say.  A place where childhood memories are sketched forever across my heart.  Childhood memories can be special or they can be burdensome.  That is the one unique thing that plays a huge part in what we call our special self.  This weekend return took me back in time.  A time when I thought the world in which I lived and grew up in was the most special place on earth.  As I entered the house, I walked around reliving times that are vivid and joyful.  I entered the living room and remembered those days when our family would sit together watching television.  I moved on to the bedroom and remembered feeling safe and secure in my bed with the warm covers that included quilts my grandmother and other ladies in the community had created together consisting of a multitude of colors and fabrics.  I remembered waking to the aroma of bacon cooking in the kitchen, coffee brewing, and biscuits in the oven.  The most special of all was actually entering the kitchen to the smiles on the faces of my mother and grandmother greeting me as I entered with my long flannel pajamas.  These are smiles etched in my memory forever.

I remembered our family sitting on the porch together watching the cars pass by and waving to all because they would usually be family or friends. We would sit and watch the frogs hopping around or listen to the bugs fly about while the radio played nearby.

Going back home was a terrific weekend getaway. It was a time to reunite with family and friends. A time when we could reminisce together. We sat on the porch in the rocking chairs looking out at the grass where we ran around playing hopscotch, ball, hide and go seek together, and chased butterflies so many years ago.

During this weekend reunion we promised to stay in touch – to keep our roots together. This special weekend of reuniting, we laughed and talked together, ate delicious meals together and held onto each other with the full knowledge that we each carry a responsibility to protect our heritage, to love each other and to stay connected. This would continue to be done via our family reunions, visits back to our childhood homes, social media and any other tool that assists with this mantra.

Yes, going back home is different now. The childhood home doesn’t feel the same. There is sorrow now. Mom and grandma are now buried in the family cemetery a few miles away. The house is quiet. The serenity is not joyful. But holding fast to those precious times keeps the memories alive – in our hearts. These are the moments, the precious moments that we cherish. With each passing day, we make new memories and hope that when our children revisit their childhood homes they too will experience the joy and happiness of remembering a special time in their lives.

Sorrow never fully leaves but happiness conquers all. So going home again creates new moments – the stuff life is made of!