Community work: it’s a wrap!

This whole week I volunteered as part of a team to recognize and then implement ‘waste’ (time, motion, effort) in a community hospital setting. I was “fresh eyes” on the team: meaning I know nothing about the situation, the people, the process, nor the desired outcome, because I don’t work there, nor have I ever done this professional work. Additionally, I volunteered as the photographer of the team/work all week. These photos were used on the final report-out to the hospital administration and other staff members.

Monday we met each other (names, roles within the hospital, length of time working here), and learned what our task is for the week. We began training on processes, responsible stewardship, order, and outcomes. This included jargon, that I kept asking, “What does that mean?” and, “What does that (acronym) stand for?” Everyone was generous with explanations and definitions. Through discussions, experiments, and more discussions, we created some techniques to smooth out some current situations. By Friday, we were hugging each other, snapping selfies, and celebrating our accomplishments.

me indicating the neon orange sticker that matches the folder to the designated printer
me making labels for my portion of the work

What I learned: I am so very grateful for my life, my Empty-Nester job, husband, and community. I realize more now what people do in their chosen professional fields – seeing part of it magnified. I respect the people in hospital settings even more than I already did! Not only do they do exceptional work inside the building, but some juggle familes too.

For me, the outcome is joy. I am joyful to have met these nine hard-working people; to have contributed my thoughts and past experiences to this process, for the enlightment of what really goes on behind the scenes, and my role as wife, mom and now ‘housewife.’ It was a backstage tour of some sorts.

For the finale, I slept for twelve straight hours, drank coffee unhurried, and donned my usual uniform of jeans + sneakers. I’m back to my regular, spectacular life. Something I will not take for granted!

Tip: walking a day (or a week) in someone else’s shoes yields great appreciation for your own life and purpose.

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”
~Anaïs Nin



Another example of community ~

This blogger is eye-ball-deep in community this week. Invited to be on a panel as “fresh eyes” for the betterment of a hospital and its procedures, I’ve met some neat people, learned a lot about the internal goings-on in a hospital, and contributed my thoughts.

So happy to make a difference, I will share some of what I learned next week. Until then, jump into community involvement, how ever that appears to you. I’m happy to have been included.



Kudos for Community

As I’ve mentioned, in person and on this blog, I’m a Spring/Summer person. I like hot, beach, ocean, palm trees, desert, and dry. What I also love is community. I love when people come together; do things together; enjoy time together.

This makes me happy:

kids ran out from this apartment building and nearby hotel to build a snowman.
amazing snow lion by our apartment pool

I had to share. Kudos for the kids in this community.



Friends and how lucky we are to have them

I count myself very lucky, fortunate, grateful, to have friends from grade school, high school, university, and all of the places I’ve lived, still in my life. While I stay connected to most of them through email and/or social media, I do speak to many on the phone periodically, and some I get to see in person. Those in-person visits and phone conversations really fill up my heart.

True friends accept us as we are, flaws, mistakes and all. True friends listen to us, and sometimes even help us hear ourselves. They “listen” us as whole and part of their life.

Thinking about true, strong friendships inspires me to be a better friend. To go beyond the regular “hellos” and “Happy Birthday” online. I must say that I love when Facebook celebrates a ‘friendiversary‘ by showing me how long we’ve been friends. Some of my friendships began before Facebook was born!

“As a human being, I’m aware that we are all physically, mentally and emotionally the same and we all want to live a happy life. Scientists say our basic nature is compassionate. It’s clear that love and affection bring people together.” (Dalai Lama)

One of my new year’s resolutions is to say better connected with friends. I guess that means buying some plane tickets and more Road Trip Tuesdays.



Staying current

As a ‘newcomer’ to my current city, I feel it necessary to stay current on activities, highlights, events, and my personal self-care. Thus, I attended a lecture, by a female professor (of 39 years), to hear her views of Europe and the changes and growth in that country. I left the auditorium more than disappointed but irritated. Her presentation was very slanted to her feminist ideals and ‘experiences’ in the academic world, with hints of disdain for the US government. I sat through the entire presentation and respect her opinions. We learn from others.

Then I decided to stay current on my immunizations, in the hopes of traveling abroad again and staying healthy. So, I willingly accepted immunizations for Hep A and B (in combo) and Tetanus. After those sticks, I entered the lab for a complete blood panel and Hep C screening. The best part: cutie-pie bandaids. So far, so good.

my shoulder after two injections

Next week, I will join a panel of “fresh eyes” to further the growth and action of a community about twenty minutes from my home. I’m looking forward to it: adult conversation, brain work, fancy clothes, and making a difference.

Empty nesters must stay current to preclude atrophy in our brains and bodies. Finding things to do is a challenge I happily accept. I’m retired but not old.



Resolutions or restrictions?

For my New Years’ resolutions, I’ve created a “floating” list….it floats inside my head. It consists of: trying new foods, listening to different music, going to new places, decluttering, finishing the scanning photos project  ordeal, calling friends, driving nicer, and make better use of my gym time.

these photos are in order by year…all identified and ready to scan.

The restrictions I’ve undertaken as of late include zero, 0, null, none, nada carbs. Well, I’ve found my hand in a bag of corn tortilla chips and my lips kissing a full glass of red wine. Okay, I’m not perfect. The keto lifestyle works when we work it….better for my HH than me, but I have shed almost twenty pounds/two clothes sizes. Every day I say, “no carbs today,” and then 💥pow💥 I find something (that has escaped the purge) in the pantry. Today, I publically promise, no carbs. I hold you, my gracious reader, as an accountability partner. After some more shed pounds, I’ll amend this restriction. But for now: I shall not sneak.

The new year is a great time to start fresh, with a clean slate, and an open mind. Resolution #1 is complete: I cleaned out and organized our kitchen pantry.

Newly decluttered and organized kitchen pantry

Today, I’ll tackle a kitchen junk/gadget drawer.

kitchen gadget drawer

Since I have no TV, days 3 and 4 will be a breeze, as will 25, 26, and 27 because I’m an Empty Nester! Are you with me? It’s not fun doing it alone.



New Year’s Declutter calendar…

New year, new questions…

It’s 2019, I’m 50-something years young. I had a wonderful NYE evening with friends eating, laughing, dipping stuff into hot fondue pots, and watching the famous ball drop in Times Square on the TV. As perfect as that night was, I still have so many unanswered questions!!!!

I haven’t found out who let the dogs out…where’s the beef…how to get to Sesame Street… why Dora doesn’t just use Google Maps…Why do all flavors of fruit loops taste exactly the same, or how many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop……why eggs are packaged in a flimsy carton, but batteries are secured in plastic that’s tough as nails…what does the fox say… why “abbreviated” is such a long word; or why is there a D in ‘fridge’ but not in refrigerator… why lemon juice is made with artificial flavor yet dish-washing liquid is made with real lemons… why they sterilize the needle for lethal injections… and, why do you have to “put your two cents in” but it’s only a “penny for your thoughts” where’s that extra penny going to… why does The Alphabet Song and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star have the same tune… why did you just try to sing those two previous songs… and just what exactly is Victoria’s secret? and where is Waldo?… Can you hear me now?…and do you really think I am this witty?? … I actually got this from a friend, who stole it from her brother’s girlfriend’s, uncle’s cousin’s who lived next door to an old class mate’s mailman…

Now it is your turn to take it from me… Copy and Paste, change the age (if necessary) and enjoy your day. I enjoyed the laugh and I bet you did too. 😉

Copied and shared with permission.

Happy, Healthy, FUN, and prosperous New Year. I think we’re off to a great start!



not my face, but my ? marks.

Happy News Year!!!

Breaking News: This is OUR year….we can create whatever we desire. Choose wisely because our inner thoughts determine our experiences and outcomes. I’m creating new adventures, less clutter, more creativity, and deeper connections.

I will see you in the news! I will read about you: online and on pages. I will do new things with greater pleasure and love. I will write with more passion.

This is our time. Let’s get after it! New cures the blues.