I am a believer in the idea of being grateful for the positive things that happen in life. It is a great tool for shifting a “bad day” into a good one. It can be humbling to think about all the things that truly are blessings that I sometimes take for granted.
I am comfortable with gratitude for the positive things in my life – I am contemplating gratitude for the negative things in my life. This is more of an abstraction but almost certainly one that can help me on my path to personal growth.
What am I grateful for in this (fill in the blank with a negative word) situation?
Dig deep. Find Something. Anything. What did I learn? How can I grow from this? Instead of a scar this can be a reminder – a reminder that things get better; a reminder to trust my instincts.
“Every problem is a gift – without problems we would not grow.”
― Anthony Robbins
Lately I have been in a funk and feeling angry a lot. Am I forgetting to be grateful? Do I need to view the things that frustrate or vex me from a perspective of how they are good for me?
The path is not always easy
There are things and people that make life frustrating. Channeling that energy into something positive makes us stronger.
The magic of autumn is the combination of cool air changing the landscape as robust trees lose their leaves and the empty spaces echo with mystery. There is a spooky energy in the short days and long nights.
Full moon, cold air on my neck and the rustling of dried out leaves in the breeze can have me looking around for someone to hop out of the shadows.
Who is sneaking up behind me? Probably no one right?
I totally understand why the northeastern portion of the US was home to some great stories like “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving. We still worry about the dead walking but now their not headless, just mindless.
Zombies are everywhere in popculture and though my kids like them, they don’t like it when I initiate a game of “What would you do in a zombie apocalypse?”
This is a silly question when logic tells us it is unlikely that the dead will walk and try to eat us – but in the spirit of fun – what would you do?
Myself, I would try to survive for as long as possible, but if it became clear that there was no way that I was going to make it I have a contingency plan.
Step 1 Glucosamine: mega doses of glucosamine. The reason that the zombies are always limping along is that their joints are deteriorating from lack of synovial fluid. While this is not a forever solution I think that flooding my system with some glucosamine might keep me spry for a while. And I think that the flexible zombie gets more brains. (It was a total coincidence that my old joints were achy and I bought some glucosamine – my 13 year old spotted it and assumed – well,.. probably that I am nuts.)
Step 2 Wear athletic outfit and nice sneakers. Who wants to be some rag a ma tag zombie limping along barefoot in torn clothes? Spoiler Alert – I’m gonna be a zombie – #Track Suit Zombie
Step 3 Get close enough to get a bite on the arm and have a weapon to keep the zombie from eating me. In order to pull off the track suit zombie ensemble I can’t be walking around all gored up.
Step 4 Position myself where there will be some people to chase so that once I wake up all dead and ravenous there will be something to snack on.
Death is inevitable but being some smelly half eaten limping around bag of bones is optional – I prefer to go out in style.
“Come on baby, and she had no fear And she ran to him, then they started to fly They looked backward and said goodby, she had become like they are She had taken his hand, she had become like they are Come on baby, don’t fear the reaper“- Blue Oyster Cult
Don’t wait until next Tuesday – Invest in Yourself Now!
Over the past few years I have been on a personal journey of self- development and improvement. This has included small measurable goals like reading more and getting at least 10,000 steps each day. It has also involved getting to know myself better by acknowledging the feedback that my body is giving me. There is more harmony in accepting that I can decide what I enjoy and don’t have to make anyone else happy.
As I sought out information and improvement I found a great website where anyone can take inexpensive and even free courses from amazing schools like MIT, Harvard, and Berkeley.
Here is the link to the site for those who are interested
I love to write and found a course from the University of Queensland in Australia on English grammar. I enjoy history and politics and found a phenomenal American government course on HarvardX. There are courses on a wide range of topics and the other students are all over the world.
Every day we all have the opportunity to learn and evolve. This is not limited to mastering tasks on the job or checking boxes on a to-do list. Learning doesn’t need to be expensive – it could and should include going to the library and borrowing books or using Wi-Fi to take a free class. There are podcasts and audio books. There is an abundance of information available for those who seek to learn.
Investing time and energy into learning every day is beneficial on many levels. It will give you advantages in your professional life as well as in your personal life. There are resources to learn everywhere and instead of waiting until it is convenient just go for it.
“Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do”
Peculiar signs are popping up in public spaces in Fenton NY
Seemingly overnight, a large number of signs have popped up in the public spaces in the Town of Fenton NY. While it is unclear who may have placed these signs, there may be an opposing group. Could there finally be a chance for democracy? Are we going to get to vote?
Anyone who has read my blog recently (thank you!) will know that I have been preoccupied with a local government issue. The Town of Fenton Board has approved a gas compressor close to my house – without a public vote. There is a large and vocal opposition to it and the town board is defensive, condescending and belligerent. Check out the link below for the latest in our local paper -there is also a video that will give you an idea of the demeanor of the board when facing their constituents.
Who in this community could be putting out these new signs? It probably isn’t the residents shown here. In fact, most of these people have “NO Compressor Station Fenton NY” signs proudly displayed in front of their home. These people are fighting this gas compressor which will devalue real estate, increase traffic, cause noise and light pollution while it operates 24 hours a day. And the school district, local churches and residents have filed lawsuits to keep this compressor out of the community at great personal expense. These good people have been forced to fight by a town government that has forgotten where their loyalties should lie.
But still unanswered – who could have put up these signs? Hmmmm….
Do we have an opposing group of citizens??? Are we getting a vote to settle this thing?
Has the day come to do this?
Or did Rico Suave instruct his contingent of paid off, nepotistic, corrupt lackeys to do what they do best and sneak around to post these signs?
Enough is Enough
This town board was elected by the residents of Fenton -it has a duty to the people of this town. This is the most local level of government. It has an important role in promoting the town, representing its interests and supporting the work of different groups in the community.
In an age when people are realizing the scale-ability of incomes and looking to maximize their leisure time – it is time for corporations to ditch the 40+ hour work week and find a model that attracts talent and productivity.
In the 1950’s when most households were patriarchal maybe the 9-5 workday made sense.
But the “Honey, I’m home – where’s my dinner?” days are gone. Now people are far more productive when they have the flexibility to balance personal life with work.
Why would you want to rot in a cube farm while life passes you by just to impress a boss who may give you a small increase annually? The same boss will certainly expect you to “step up” and work even harder when another employee moves on or a new priority is set.
If you had the chance to work remotely and a set list of tasks to complete would you get them done?
Would you be more or less motivated if you knew that you could work and go to your kid’s ball game? Or pursue another interest like a dance class or golf?
Or take a graduate course at 10 am on Wednesday with the best professor instead of an evening course with an adjunct professor after both of you have been working all day?
YES!!! Of course you would because it isn’t that you don’t want to work – you want to live and work.
Balance is the key to everything.
You don’t have to the be The boss to be A Boss
Mondays could start with a morning surf or yoga class – how would that change the dynamic of the week?
Our schools are the heart of the community. The tiniest CV students start their education at Port Dickinson Elementary. Soon buses will be rolling up for the first day of school and in 2 months the school will have hundreds of super heroes and princesses parading around it for Halloween. This school is where our kids had their very first day of school. This should Always be a Safe place for our kids and we are fighting to keep it that way.
We need to do everything we can to keep a gas compressor station from being built around the corner from the school. There is a hold on the compressor for the moment, but the town board is publicly stating that they intend to pass it again even though the people don’t want it and have been protesting it.
Please check out the site below – This is a worthy cause and will help ordinary people who are doing something extraordinary.
It is hard to deny that there is a serious problem when you look at the maps and the information on the site. There is a reason that so many members of our communities are mobilizing and doing everything that we can to stop this project. There are links on the site so that you can help out by making a donation or writing letters to bring attention from New York State government members.
No more sneaky deals Fenton Board -We are watching and we will show up
These guys didn’t even pretend to care about what the people in this community want. They discouraged people from coming and tried to meet behind closed doors. They tried to say there were too many people. One member walked in a few minutes after it started and pushed past ladies and kids without saying a word then sat looking around awkwardly for the entire meeting. Others glared with disdain at the taxpayers who had the nerve to show up and question their processes – or lack there of.
Maybe they were upset about the ruling which found that they cut corners and approved something that they should not have. Maybe they just feel that they should be able to make decisions for everyone with no regard to the impact those decisions have. Maybe they think that we have no right to question them.
The people were ready. They were organized and refused to be ignored. Their peaceful protest began outside with a powerful chant “YOU WORK FOR US!!!!”and as the meeting opened there were chants for members to resign.
“Why are you saying that you will approve this project again?” came a question from the town. The members insisted that they couldn’t discuss it. This seems weird because a few hours earlier, David Hamlin Town Supervisor was being interviewed on WSKG.
There was a good representation of teenagers and they were excited to see democracy in action. They were surprised that a town meeting could be so exciting. Eyes got big when people were shouting out questions and a second sheriff walked in to stand guard. Could a town meeting be dangerous? They couldn’t understand why the Board members, who showed such disdain for the people in this town, were the ones making decisions for it.
In a Democracy the people have a right to vote we shouldn’t have to fight to be heard –
BUT WE WILL FIGHT
Nothing significant got discussed. One of the Board members started having a temper tantrum when he thought it was his turn to talk and he pounded the gavel and stormed out. It was like watching a two year old who needed a nap. I guess he was frustrated that he wanted to be heard and couldn’t get our attention.
There needs to be a power shift in this community.
“With public sentiment, nothing can fail. Without it, nothing can succeed” – Abraham Lincoln
In a quiet little town in Upstate NY a fight is under way. The local town board has made a deal to bring in a 24 hour a day gas compressor station. They selected a site on a narrow service road beside a community park and near the elementary school. The citizens of the community got no vote – we were just informed of it after the fact. And when we questioned it the board was self-righteous and condescending. This Board has forgotten who they represent. In fact, they are so confident that they are continuing to pursue a project that has divided the community.
“We the people tell the government what to do. It doesn’t tell us.”
– Ronald Reagan
Apparently the Town of Fenton Board missed the memo. They’re at it again…
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Town of Fenton Planning Board will hold a Public Hearing to review and take action on the new development permit application made pursuant to the Aquifer Protection Law, Chapter 57 of the Town of Fenton Town Code, at 65, 69 and 93 West Service Road (a/k/a 71 West Service Road), Binghamton (Town of Fenton), Tax Map ID Nos.: 128.02-1-7, 128.02-1-6 and 128.02-1-9; submitted by NG Advantage, LLC on Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 7:00 p.m., at the Town Hall located at 44 Park Street, Port Crane, New York.
Dated: August 21, 2017 TOWN OF FENTON
“Hey Board Members – did you miss the lawsuits? Or the Yard signs? Or the emails, letters and calls? The petition demanding your resignation? Doesn’t ring a bell? What about when Senator Akshar said it was a bad location? Why are you STILL pandering to NG Advantage?”
We are not some anti-power fringe. We aren’t paid protesters. We are people who chose to buy homes and raise our families in this community. We are tax paying voters who can organize and bring change. It is time that the Town Board is squirming at these meetings because the people who they work for are unhappy. And we have an expectation that the officials will not make deals behind our backs but will be transparent and put important decisions to a Public vote.
Be deliberate in your actions, don’t just flail around. If something is worth your effort, give it 100% of your energy and focus. Diverting energy and resources away from your passion in some willy- nilly attempt to be good at a lot of things will prevent you from being amazing at any of them. Continue reading “Don’t just flail around”→
Taking the drive from Binghamton, NY to Virginia Beach was not boring for a minute. We played “yellow car” think Punch bug but with yellow cars, trucks, buses, and excavators. Bluetooth songs streamed a wide variety of tunes from radio top 40 to Nirvana Unplugged, Dave Matthews, Depeche Mode, the Grateful Dead, Frank Zappa and on. Then at the beach there was a band playing 80’s hits and my daughter who is on the cusp of her teens grabbed me by the hand and pulled me onto the dance floor to Walk like an Egyptian and hit a lighted beach ball with the crowd. For the first time in a while I was able to truly relax and enjoy it all.
Being a parent is hard work and more often than not it can feel like a battle. Maybe I should introduce Love is a Battlefield next? I used to love music and now I listen to podcasts and NPR. I guess I forgot how the right music can set the tone for an experience and driving down the highway imitating Moon Unit saying “like Oh my God” literally opened up the playful silly part of me that loves to laugh and even better they got to have that experience with me. My 17 year old son who plays classic rock on a guitar with doves inlaid on the fret board, my 14 year old son who has an amazing sense of rhythm and can dance to anything and my 13 year old daughter who can sing along with any radio song plus rock out to the 80’s.
I am happy that I was able to take a moment to appreciate the simplest pleasures on our trip – music and laughs with the people that I love.