Tag Archives: Culture

One Great Big Ball of Life

24 Jan



One of the most interesting parts of Life is that it is impossible to predict what will happen next and surprises arise on a steady pace of regularity.

Regular surprises….two words that contradict each other….. true irony.

Enjoy each and every day, no matter what happens, keep faith and head up with hope for good things and that the true meaning of each day is to maximizing happiness by sharing kindness.  Lead by example.

Creating Opportunities

16 Dec


With so many critics in the World, it is important to take action to create opportunities that help people advance and grow to be better people.

Ask yourself, when was the last time you went out of your way to do something good for someone?

If you can answer that question without any trouble, then you are doing a good job.

If you can’t remember the last time you did something really great for someone, step out of your comfort zone and figure out what you can do to make someone else’s Life better.

Good gestures and thoughtful actions teach people good example.

So are you a follower or are you a Leader?

Monday Morning

15 Dec


Weekends go by so quickly and then Monday mornings roll around and the work week starts all over again.

It’s an interesting Life and the surprises never end.

This morning I started my day off in prayer.  Thanking God for my blessings, feeling grateful for good things and keeping hopeful that Life becomes better than it is right now and happiness stays at the forefront of each day.

So have a great day today, slip in a prayer or two of thanks, pray for your family and friends and grab this day by the sunshine and continue on happily and content.

Much Love.  Happy Monday!


Children Guiders

14 Dec


When I was in college, I worked part time in a NY State Social Services Agency as a Youth Advocate.

Families were referred to our agency via the Court System for minors who have gotten in legal trouble and had been arrested.  Troubled youth were referred to our program as a last attempt to get the kids productively functioning in society. If they couldn’t stay out of trouble the Court would mandate child placement.

My first assigned case was with a family of 5 people.  Michael was 15 years old and had a 4month old son.  Michael was always in trouble and he had a bad temper when he got angry.

My job was to keep Michael busy and involved in productive activities that kept him engaged and focused on doing well and keeping out of trouble.  My main priority was to make sure that he did well in school.  So every morning, to start my day, I would drive 20 minutes, out of the city to where Mike lived to wake him up and make sure he got up to school.  Each morning I would drive him and his siblings to school so they could start the day off right.

Michael took a great liking to me from the very first day we met.  He was a young boy from upstate, NY and he thought it was cool I was from Brooklyn.

Michael and I got along very well and he enjoyed spending time with me each day.  He started doing better in school, his temper calmed, he saw his son on a regular basis.  I would involve Mike in activities that were based around sports and exercise.  This helped him to release his pent up energy.

Michael’s family grew to love me and were thankful for my involvement in their child’s Life.  Even during the summer semester, I stayed upstate working, as oppossed to my spending the summer in Brooklyn.

It was a top priority for me to make sure Michael had continued structure and support that was consistent.  It was important for him to know he could trust me and that I wanted him to achieve success. 

Mike grew to respect me and he and I had a very good rapport.

Mike was on summer vacation from school and he had a friend who invited him to go to Great Adventure.

Mike’s father didn’t grant him permission to go because none of his siblings were invited. This made Mike very angry.  Mike’s father often had angry outbursts and he and Mike would fight very hard.  Mike hated when his father screamed at him and since Mike was angry, he yelled back and their fight escalated quickly.

It was 2:00AM when Mike called me to tell me he was running away because his father was fighting with him and was acting too crazy.

Telling Mike to wait for me to get there, I drove 20 minutes outside the city to his house.  When he heard my car, he climbed out of the window of the 2nd floor and lowered himself down the side of the house to drop into the front lawn.  His father was in a rage and was giving Mike a hard time.

Mike’s father tried to get him inside but Michael refused to go anywhere near his Dad. This made his father even more mad and he ran out of the house and continued screaming. 

He cursed at me and was angry I was there during a time when he was raging mad.  He shouted more curses and went back inside and slammed the door.

Not knowing what to do, I pulled up 2 camping chairs and I let Mike cry and talk.  It took some time but close to 5AM he calmed down.  I was afraid to leave him alone.  He fell asleep and when the sun rose, I woke Mike, convinced him to go inside and told him I was going to speak with my bosses and call him later.

I reminded him to take it easy and to not start any fights with his family.

Later that day I told my boss what happened.  She looked sad and regretful and she explained to me that Mike’s father had called her and terminated our services.

How he put it was, if he wasn’t able to control his son and his bad temper, he was going to take away the one thing that meant to most to him: His advocate friend from Brooklyn, his Ann Marie.

He said I was never allowed to go by their house again and that their family wouldn’t require our services any longer. We used to pay their bills, buy them food, drive their children to school and provide them with emotional and structural support.

Because this man couldn’t control his son the way he thought was fit, he took away the one person Mike really cared about, looked up to and respected.

He hit his son where he would be hurt the hardest.

I was crushed.  I had done so much for their family and had been a strong, positive influence.  Mike had come such a long way and for him, things had been looking up.

It really stunned me that a parent could be so selfish and would do something so sad and cruel to their child.  Michael loved me and in his eyes, I was his best friend, a glimmer of hope for good things in the future.  He liked that I had expectations and goals for him, he was motivated that someone believed he could succeed.

It was very sad for me to leave him and never get to say goodbye.  It was strange for the family to be yanked from my Life.  Despite various meetings with my boss, his father wouldn’t change his mind and terminated our services.

That was 10 years ago. Since then, Mike and his family have moved and despite many attempts to locate them, I was never successful.  It was as if they disappeared.

Today I was thinking about Mike.  Googling his name to see if any info had surfaced, I saw an article about a man named Michael who was arrested two days ago for stealing 21 goats from a farm and selling them on Craig’s list.

After doing some investigating, for sure, this is the same Michael who I remember as a 15 year old boy.  He is 26 now and from what I have read, he has been in and out of jail for the last few years.

I can’t help but feel regret for him and sadness that he wasn’t able to pull things together to live a good, happy Life. I can’t help but think how close he was to being ok before his father turned his back on his son by cutting off his favorite positive people in his Life. 

Parents are suppossed to be a strong support.  They are supposed to guide and nurture.  

I never got to talk to Michael again after that night.  But perhaps, since now I know where he is, I can pay him a visit.

Click the link to view the News Trailer



King of Pain

14 Dec

It is sad when other people influence others to hate and to be cruel.

In this World there are Leaders and Followers.

Hopefully Leaders spread a good message…….although often this is not the case.

Keep strong.

King Of Pain – The Police (HQ Audio + Lyrics): http://youtu.be/B3l0kpl5tA4



12 Dec



12 Dec

Today, for lunch,  I was going to have Seafood Soup from a Jamaican restaurant.

However, one of the Residents in the Nursing Facility where I work, hit the mid day lotto numbers, won $500 dollars and insisted that he buy my staff and I lunch to show appreciation for the work we do every day.

That is such a nice thing to do and it genuinely makes me feel good that he wants to acknowledge the hard work of my staff.

It makes me proud that we are running a Recreation department that the Residents are happy with and that they think we are doing a good job.

My staff is comprised of very hard workers and each day I am grateful to have them in my Life.  Every day I learn something new from them and we help each other grow to become better people.

So, for today, the sea food soup in on hold.

Describe Your Life in Two Words   :   Seafood Soup!

Uptown Head High

10 Dec

It has been raining all week.

People become gloomy in the rain!

But there is no need to feel gloomy with good people around who enjoy laughing and fun!

It is important to spread positive energy at any points possible.

Even when things are out of the ordinary or not going to plan.

But since when do plans always go according to what we think……..

We can only work hard to do what we can to live well, enjoy Life and keep happy.

The Flow Must Go anyway you look at it…..so might as well look good.




10 Dec

During a Fashion event in Brooklyn, NY, I met a violinist named Svet.

I didn’t even notice him at first, but as the DJ played, I was sure that I heard live music.

At first, I was focused on the models and their eccentric outfits.

Hearing the sound of a violin broke my attention from the fashion show, and I scanned over the room, looking for the source of the music.

As the models walked down the run way to various songs, there he was, a young man standing next to the DJ booth playing his violin.

Svet played his violin with passion. He had a uniquely high energy. Each of his notes matched the songs of the DJ. He was excellent.

His music sounded great and he immediately grabbed the attention of the crowd.  They loved his sound.

Music is one of the elements in Life I love the most.

Listening to live violin over hip hop and dance tracks was not a combination I was familiar hearing.

Immediately, I knew I wanted to meet with Svet.  I very much enjoyed the rest of the show and I met with both he and his manager before I left for the night.

Talking to his manager, I explained that I worked in a Nursing Facility and I would love to hire Svet to play for the Residents.

Asking about his rates, I realized that hiring Svet was not in my Nursing Home’s budget.

His manager told me not to worry and if I wanted a performance in the Nursing Home, e-mail him later that week and we could work something out.

True to his word, after some correspondence, Svet’s manager organized a day for Svet to come to the Nursing Facility and play for the Residents.

Svet played his violin for over 2 hours and he gave the Residents of a Brooklyn Nursing home a truly beautiful and powerful musical experience.

It was a day I will never forget.

That was three years ago.

Since then, Svet has traveled around the World bringing his gift of music to people of all cultures and styles.

He shares his talent and he has impacted people from all walks of Life.

Since I last saw Svet, I have followed his career through social media and each time I watch him accomplish something great or have an outstanding performance, I am always happy for him and it always reminds me of the day he rocked Brooklyn.

Two weeks ago, I noticed a text message on my phone, and opened my messagr to find that it was from Svet.

It surprised me to see his name on my Caller ID.

He wanted to know if I would like him to come play a Holiday show for the Residents because he would be in NYC for the Holidays.

Since the last time I saw him, I work in a different facility in Queens, NY.

He didn’t mind to come somewhere new and he is genuinely eager to play for people that he knows can benefit from his music.

Svet will be coming to Hollis, Queens to play a Christmas show for the Residents in less than two weeks and I genuinely cannot wait.

A beautiful spirit with a beautiful violin.

Spread Good Music.

Spread Good Life!



How Can I Put This Best

9 Dec



For thirteen years I went to Catholic schools where I was educated about God, the Bible and the Church. After going to Catholic school from Pre-K to 8th grade, I continued on and graduated from an all-girls Catholic high school.  Even though my high school wasn’t co-ed, my friends and I were well aware of Life outside of school.

Half the time I was in class, my lessons were not first on my mind. The reason for this is I am a daydreamer.  Life revolves around my dreams.  The faith that I have in God has helped me achieve these dreams.

What can I say I know about God?

Knowing that God stands with me has helped keep me safe.  I believe in Jesus and the Saints.  Saints were good people who strove to show compassion and live their lives sharing genuine love.

Writing about something that can’t be proven is difficult.  There is no tangible evidence that God is real.  Without evidence it can be hard for people to believe that God exists.  For some people their faith that God exists allows them to believe.

My proof that God exists comes from thinking of all the times that I was taken out of harm’s way or made my way through tough times.  Knowing that I am being watched leaves me feeling grateful and safe.  My Mom tells me that my Grandmother, her mother looks out for me all the time.

I hope this is true.  I never met my Grandmother.  Sadly, she died one month before I was born.  My Mother was devastated by her terrible loss.  Donna had a rough Life.  With God’s love and my Grandmother’s blessing, she didn’t give up, and because she nurtured her spirit for my sake, she delivered me healthy and strong.  Here I am, 24 years later, blessed by my Mother’s gift, writing my story.

The eternal question – how can God, who has protected me from serious harm – let harm come to so many others?  I have no answers.  Why do some people suffer so greatly, I don’t know. I would love to understand.

I feel truly sad when tragedy strikes.  Talking to God with my mind and my soul, I ask God for guidance to stay on my right path.  There are many times when keeping on the right path is difficult.  I pray for and wish for the well-being of everyone in my Life – actually for the well-being of everyone everywhere.  Hoping that I will stay safe from harm I put my trust in God and his force – knowing if I keep my faith strong, I will succeed in staying happy.  It is important for me to be a good person.

Being a God fearing and respecting person, I carefully try to observe Life by evaluating everything I see.  I often see great and amazing things that leave me profoundly moved by people and their kindness and the compassion they show for others during hard times.  When God is in people’s lives – great things are possible.

Thinking about becoming a better person, I know there are many things I need to improve.  Trying to learn from my experiences, I need to find the strength to accept and forgive myself for my mistakes.

Forgetting is a big part of moving on in Life.  Sometimes, forgetting is very hard to do.  Regret is scary.  Regret can hold people back and confine them to a certain place.  My hope is to have the strength to persevere in picking myself up to live my best Life.

Why has God chosen me to be so lucky?  I have seen many beautiful and interesting things. I have met people and seen places that many others will not have the chance to see or experience.  My answer: I can always find something great by searching for the good in people and Life.  It’s a blessing believing that the love I have for Life and people will keep me strong. How can I keep my faith strong and alive?

I see a beautiful world that I appreciate every day.  I see people who laugh and cry.  I see the sun, stars, water, birds, big buildings and bridges. I love ice cream, pasta, bicycles, boats and good conversations.  I love music.  I enjoy travelling – seeing the differences between people and countries.  I have climbed mountains, walked in desserts, swam in oceans and lakes and have lived in different suburbs and cities.  I have lived in the black part of town and I have lived in the white part of town.

Always I hope for the best for all people.  Believing God helps me to respond to people naturally, when I see someone uncomfortable, I try to help.  A person’s character can be noted by watching their expressions and how they move.

I love people and believe that most everyone has good in them to share.  When I feel lost I look to my dreaming tree for clarity and consolation.  God created my dreaming tree; He sees my dreams.  God is watching.  Life is meant to be great – and of this – we should not lose sight.