Sunday, September 20, 2009

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Nature's Beauty

Okay, so it has been forever. Moving, new job, new job blog...I have been busy! Anyway, not much for this moment, except a beautiful video that reminds me why moving to a place like Utah was the right decision for me. Nature...and its beauty.

Birds on the Wires from Jarbas Agnelli on Vimeo.

Enjoy this music that was composed based on the birds positions as notes! Here's the direct link.

(Thank you Stephanie, for posting the link on Twitter!)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder

This may be old, but I just came across it and laughed…and laughed!

A.A.A.D.D. – Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder.
This is how is manifests itself:

I decide to wash my car. As I start toward to the garage, I notice that there is mail on the hall table. I decide to go through the mail before I wash the car.

I lay my car keys down on the table, put the junk mail in the trash can under the table, and notice that the trash can is full.

So, I decide to put the bills back on the table and take out the trash first, but then I think that since I’m going to be near the mailbox when I take out the trash anyway, I may as well pay the bills first.

I take my checkbook off the table and see that there is only one check left. My extra checks are in my desk in the study, o I go to my desk where I find the can of Coke that I had been drinking. I’m going to look for my checks, but first I need to push the Coke aside so that I don’t accidentally knock it over.

I see that the Coke is getting warm, and I decide I should put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold.

As I head toward the kitchen with the Coke, a vase of flowers on the counter catches my eye–they need to be watered.

I set the Coke down on the counter and I discover my reading glasses that I’ve been searching for all morning.

I decide I’d better put them back on my desk, but first I’m going to water the flowers.
I set the glasses back down on the counter, fill a container with water, and suddenly I spot the TV remote. Someone left it on the kitchen table.

I realize that tonight, when we go to watch TV, we will be looking for the remote, but nobody will remember that it’s on the kitchen table, so I decide to put it back in the den where it belongs, but first I’ll water the flowers.

I splash some water on the flowers, but most of it spills on the floor. So, I set the remote back down on the table, get some towels and wipe up the spill.

Then I head down the hall trying to remember what I was planning to do.

At the end of the day; the car isn’t washed, the bills aren’t paid, there is a warm can of Coke sitting on the counter, the flowers aren’t watered, there is still only one check in my checkbook, I can’t find the remote, I can’t find my glasses, and I don’t remember what I did with the car keys.

Then, when I try to figure out why nothing got done today, I’m really baffled because I know I was busy all day long and I’m really tired. I realize this is a serious problem, and I’ll try to get some help for it, but first I’ll check my e-mail.

Do me a favor, will you? Forward this message to close friends you know, because I don’t remember to whom it has been sent.

Don’t laugh – if this isn’t you yet, your day is coming! And if I have sent this to you before….well, now you know why you’re getting it again.


…..Ha!!!! This is so me…

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Making Memories

Friday, the last day G was with me, was bittersweet. He a such a fantastic day with my friend C and her boys, but at the end of the day, it was his time to leave my house. While he stayed with me, G typically went back to his mom’s on Thursday nights. But, this week he stayed an extra day. After having a great time with a friend of mine and her family at Stars and Strikes on Monday, we happily agreed to join the gang for a trip to Helen.

(of course I had to snap a picture of a chocolate shop)

As it so beautifully described by the convention bureau, Helen is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains on the Chattahoochee River. This Northeast Georgia village has a rich history linked to the Cherokee Indians and Indian burial mounds as well as early settlers who arrived to mine for gold and cut virgin timber for a thriving lumber industry in the early 1900s. Helen is a re-creation of an alpine village complete with cobblestone alleys and old-world towers. [They've] got shopping, camping, both rustic and luxury mountain cabins, restaurants, bed and breakfast inns, mountains, theater, recreation, romantic getaways, beautiful scenery, family activities, waterfalls, museums, history, art, fishing, tubing, golf, and more. Something for every member of the family.

Festivals and special events include a hot air balloon race, Winefest, Volksmarch, Oktoberfest and Christmas parades, Fourth of July fireworks, and Bavarian Nights of Summer. From mid-September through October, Helen hosts the longest Oktoberfest in the South. Alpenfest offers entertainment during the Holiday season from Thanksgiving through December.
(click for their Calendar of Events)

But, let's face it. Helen is a great place for grown ups to visit. What was the carrot to get the kids to the quaint N. Georgia town? Tubing.

As if tubing wasn’t enough fun, how about a helicopter ride? This was an interesting outing for a girl who is afraid of heights. I think I took a breathe every so often.

Overall, the day was a great success. The only unfortunate thing was that time flew!

Words can’t express how much fun I had. C and I reflected that evening and we both looked at the day through the same glasses. Days like Friday created such wonderful memories for the kids. They will remember today like (a) we remember outings from when were small or (b) like we can’t remember/never had. The day was a culmination of the school year since September, how G has grown into a great young man, and (while he is not my own) my view of things through a different set of eyes. To think that he has been told, repeatedly since elementary school, so many hurtful things that he remembers so clearly, kills me. Any family would be lucky to have him as a member, with all his goofiness.
What did he think about the day? I am sure he didn’t go through the day with sappy thoughts like I had, but he thanked us for the opportunity to experience tubing and a helicopter ride. Overall, how did he feel about the day?

I have a heavy heart, now that he is gone. He is a special kid. I am honored he trusts me enough to talk with me about any and everything (even when I don't want to know). We ended our ride home with a fairly deep conversation as he filled in some details about his growing up I didn't know. He has truly lived a lifetime at 15. My response? Among other things I said, I told him I am glad he’s here, because if he wasn’t, I would never have met him. And, he has been a shining spot in my very rocky year. “Huh? How was that?” he asked. I proceeded to tell him that among other things, every morning he would enter the building, greet me with an ear to ear grin, offer me the “side” hug, and say good morning. Because most mornings were spent convincing myself I it was only 8 hours until the end of the day, G’s morning ritual reminded me about what is important and why I am in a great profession.

What now? I don't know what the next month will bring for him. But, I am off to Utah tomorrow morning, will not return until mid-July, so there is not much I can do at this point. My hope? Well...I just hope. Have a great summer, everyone!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Help Support Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta!

Panera Bread Bakery-Cafes us inviting their customers to try new and old menu yummies. The sampling will raise money to send kids, patients of CHOA, to summer camp.

If you’re in the Atlanta area on Thursday, June 11, 2009, please stop by one of the twenty-one participating Panera Breads. Once there, patrons can enjoy

  • free samples of Panera’s Chopped Cobb and Strawberry Poppyseed Salads and fresh frozen drinks

  • Frozen Lemonade, with which $1 will be donated to CHOA from the purchased all day at all Atlanta-area Panera Breads

Why is Panera partnering with CHOA? CHOA is a Medicaid provider, cares for more than half a million patients a year, and operates three hospitals in metro Atlanta. The number of lives saved/positively impacted at CHOA is immeasurable.

Click here to find a location.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder

The text below is another one of those email forwards...I thought this was a funny one to share since it seems to be describing me. Enjoy!

Recently, I was diagnosed with A.A.A.D.D. - Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder.

This is how it manifests: I decide to water my garden. As I turn on the hose in the driveway,I look over at my car and decide it needs washing.

As I start toward the garage, I notice mail on the porch table thatI brought up from the mail box earlier.

I decide to go through the mail before I wash the car.

I lay my car keys on the table,put the junk mail in the garbage can under the table,and notice that the can is full.

So, I decide to put the bills back on the table and take out the garbage first.

But then I think,since I'm going to be near the mailbox when I take out the garbage anyway, I may as well pay the bills first.

I take my check book off the table and see that there is only one check left. My extra checks are in my desk in the study, so I go inside the house to my desk whereI find the can of Pepsi I'd been drinking..

I'm going to look for my checks, but first I need to push the Pepsi asideso that I don't accidentally knock it over.

The Pepsi is getting warm,and I decide to put it in the refrigerator to keep it cold.

As I head toward the kitchen with the Pepsi,a vase of flowers on the countercatches my eye--they need water.

I put the Pepsi on the counter anddiscover my reading glasses thatI've been searching for all morning.

I decide I better put them back on my desk,but first I'm going to water the flowers.

I set the glasses back down on the counter, fill a container with water and suddenly spot the TV remote. Someone left it on the kitchen table.

I realize that tonight when we go to watch TV,I'll be looking for the remote,but I won't remember that it's on the kitchen table,so I decide to put it back in the den where it belongs,but first I'll water the flowers.

I pour some water in the flowers,but quite a bit of it spills on the floor.So, I set the remote back on the table,get some towels and wipe up the spill.

Then, I head down the hall trying toremember what I was planning to do.
  • At the end of the day:
  • the car isn't washed
  • The water is still running
  • the bills aren't paid
  • there is a warm can of Pepsi sitting on the counter
  • the flowers don't have enough water
  • there is still only 1 check in my check book
  • I can't find the remote
  • I can't find my glasses, and
  • I don't remember what I did with the car keys.
Then, when I try to figure out why nothing got done today,
I'm really baffled because I know I was busy all day,and I'm really tired.

I realize this is a serious problem, and I'll try to get some help for it,
but first I'll check my e-mail....

Do me a favor. Forward this message to everyone you know,because I don't remember who I've sent it to.Don't laugh -- if this isn't you yet, your day is coming!!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

For the Over 30 Crowd...

I thought this funny and wanted to share. If you're here in Atlanta and listen to V103 in the morning, this may be something you heard the DJs talking about. I think it was an email that was sent to Frank Ski.


Remembering the Old School

First, we survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they were pregnant.

They took aspirin, ate blue cheese dressing, tuna from a can and didn't get tested for diabetes.

Then after that trauma, we were put to sleep on our tummies in baby cribs covered with bright colored lead-base paints.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, locks on doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had baseball caps not helmets on our heads.

As infants & children, we would ride in cars with no car seats, no booster seats, no seat belts, no air bags, bald tires and sometimes no brakes.

Riding in the back of a pick- up truck on a warm day was always a special treat.

We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and no one actually died from this. We ate cupcakes, white bread, real butter and bacon. We drank Kool-Aid made with real white sugar. And, we weren't overweight. WHY?

Because we were always outside playing...that's why!

We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. And, we were O.K. We would spend hours building our go-carts out of scraps and then ride them down the hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times,we learned to solve the problem.

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo's and X-boxes. There were no video games, no 150 channels on cable, no video movies or DVD's, no surround-sound or CD's, no cell phones, no person al computers, no Internet and no chat rooms

WE HAD FRIENDS and we went outside and found them!

We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever.

We were given BB guns for our 10th birthdays, made up games with sticks and tennis balls and, although we were told it would happen, we did not put out very many eyes.

We rode bikes or walked to a friend's house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just walked in and talked to them.

Little League had tryouts and not everyone made the team. Those who didn't had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that!!

The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law!

These generations have produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers and inventors ever. The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas. We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

If YOU are one of them? CONGRATULATIONS! You might want to share this with others who have had the luck to grow up as kids, before the lawyers and the government regulated so much of our lives for our own good.

While you are at it, forward it to your kids so they will know how brave and lucky their parents were. Kind of makes you want to run through the house with scissors, doesn't it ?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

UniverSoul Circus: Family Fun with Urban Flavor

As old as I am, I have never been to the circus. Never been with my family, school field trip, babysitting…never. I don’t really know why that is; it could be that I am not a fan of clowns or that Ringling jingle (the one that brings out the clowns) causes the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

I didn’t quite know how to react when invited to the circus recently. I wanted to say yes, since it came about through blogging and I was extremely appreciative of the opportunity, but wanted to run at the same time. James Harris, CEO and Chief Storyteller and Kristin Parker, Account Manager of Elemental Interactive / ListenShare kept in close and gracious contact with me (unaware of my fear) and with trepidation, I grabbed my friend crossed my fingers, and hoped for the best….Off to my first circus experience….

….And how excited am I that I went? So excited. The UniverSoul Circus is not your typical 3-ring, clowns-squished-in-a-car circus. It has elements of the circus we are familiar with, but with a cultural uniqueness and Urban flavor. According to the website and Cedric Walker, Founder & CEO, “The vision was to explore the various talents other than singing and dancing that black performers had to offer. We had the idea to present something different, to create a show that presented a wide spectrum of black talent to a wide demographic of spectators. To reach deep into our culture and search for what talent and skills lie asleep in the black entertainment experience. We wanted to apply our gathered years of experience in the live appearance industry, to make a difference, to change the industry we lived in, creating growth and new opportunity.”

This year, the UniverSoul Circus turns Sweet16. Headquartered in Atlanta, what began in 1994 at Atlanta’s Turner Field (which was the Atlanta Fulton County Stadium back then) has blown up into a must-go-to family event. The circus travels ten of the twelve months and hits up to thirty markets in the United States. Performances did go on in Johannesburg one year, but they haven’t gotten abroad much more to perform. Representatives for the company, like Cedric Walker and Denise Howard, Director of Talent and Production, however, do travel all over the globe to scout fabulous and unique talent to recruit and/or develop. Did you know that some countries, like China, have actual circus schools? Me neither. But, they do!

The whole production includes about 140 staff members, about 60/60/20 with performers, staff, and home office respectively.

The forty-eight meter tent has a capacity of 2500, but an addition of a big screen reduces the actual number of audience members.

It was really interesting walking around the lot. It’s a mini city with majority of the staff living on site and a small number in hotels. Meals, school for the children, sport activities (with soccer the preferred game) all happen in the back lot.

This year, the show includes 9 plus acts which include the Risley act (woman juggling tables and giant vases with their feet), China Soul Flyers Trapeze act, Casic Horse rountine (a Russian act, but performed by West African riders),

The Wheel of Death that has two men on a moving pendulum,

Two young contortionists

Caribbean/Trinidadian dancing and limbo

Human jugglers

And several dance acts, choreographed by Christopher Flournoy,

comedic interjections and the latest Hip Hop music keeps the crowd alive and jumping.

All in all, the evening was amazing. Not only were the top UniverSoul people present and mingling, they seemed so genuine and extremely hospitable. Mrs. & Mr. Cedric Walker were out and about, conversing with the audience, and I thought it was nice and Mrs. Walker remembered meeting me upon a later introduction. Astuteness is unfortunately rare and I found it very nice. Pat Murphy, Executive director was lovely and approachable. And, Ben Johnson, Director of Operations, checked on T & I and the other bloggers several times during the performance and even took a moment to bring T a wet and dry cloth when realizing she was wearing her funnel cake sugar. (Chivalry is not dead, gentleman….bring it and girls will swoon.) I had so much fun listening to the music I love, seeing families together and smiling, and witnessing remarkable, jaw dropping performances. I am hooked and can’t wait to go back next year.
(They're in Raleigh the rest of this week, then Richmond. Check out their calendar to see where else they will be headed at this point of the tour.)