One of my favorite things about being in the Emerging Leaders Alliance is that we get to see some really awesome places. We were able to see Electric Works earlier this summer and this past week, we were able to see ReStore. I admit that I had no idea what ReStore was. When I realized it was a part of Habitat for Humanity I was intrigued.
The last time I had been a part of Habitat was when I was active in my sorority. I was a freshman in college, 19 probably, and we were doing a build in Kokomo. I don't remember much, but I do remember wearing a Strongbad hoodie. Is Strongbad still around?
We were given a tour by CEO Justin and his assistant Jamie. They told us all about the process of getting on the list, how many people are on the list, the eligibility, how the store works, and the functions of this store. One work can describe this: impressive. I was proud. Others were flabbergasted. Most of us just had warmth coming out of our hearts and wanted to throw credit cards to help.
I know I can't help financially, but you can help. Maybe. Volunteer, donate, advocate. This is a fantastic organization with upstanding morals. I am proud to put my back behind it.
I am going to predict something. Have it on record that I said that this would come up as something that people would get angry about.
These days, women (and men) are coming out to finally tell the world that they have been abused. While I find this fairly amazing, I can see some huge problems coming. I have already heard the phrase "war on men" being thrown around. This is not what I'm worried about. I have a funny prediction that will ruin your Christmas season.
One of my favorite Christmas songs has always been "Baby, It's Cold Outside". Today I was listening to the song and I started to chuckle. The premise of the song is that the guy wants her to stay for another drink. That isn't that bad. What makes it fishy during this day and era is the way the phrases are just bad timing. "Say, what's in this drink" makes it sound like she is being date raped. "The answer is no" and the guy persists is just typical of what everyone would think of as abuse or harassment. By the way, these are HUGE stretches. I love this song.
I have had many debate about political correctness and being polite. One such conversation came up around the word retard. He didn't see why people couldn't us that anymore. He said that when he was growing up that if you were slow, you were a retarded. I had to point out to him that this wasn't a blanket term. Other disorders cause an impairment in learning such as downs syndrome, dyslexia, and others. Would you go up to a kid with one of those (my nephew is dyslexic) and call them a retard? No he agreed. Sometimes it is an issue of politeness. While you may have some basis for an argument at a very deep core, you need to keep your trap shut to avoid hurting someone's feelings.
The sad thing I see in this world is that people get joy in making other people hurt, as long as they are proving a point. Welcome to 2017. Let's do better in 2018.
I have made no secret that I haven't really dated in 6 years. I have had an occasional date, but nothing that would say, "I'm dating". I was watching a video a few weeks ago that struck me as the perfect first date. It actually kinda made me want to date.
Two strangers had been talking on Match.com and they were ready to meet. Instead of going out to eat or for coffee, they got on Facebook and asked if anyone knew of someone who was going through a really hard time and just needed a real pick me up. People came through and found a girl who was having some family problems.
This couple met, picked up a beautiful bouquet of flowers, and went to meet this girl. They surprised her and asked if she was the girl who was having these problems. If so, these flowers are for you. We thought you could use something to brighten your day. The girl immediately jumped into the stranger couple's arms and cried.
Why did they do this?
Dating is very superficial You typically spend weeks or even months getting to know people. By the time you are attached, you are learning that some of those things that you were told were wrong. They were only told to impress you. Sharing such an emotional experience adds an entire new level of emotion, compassion, and realness. You can't fake those emotions.
Now think, wouldn't you rather see your future significant other's companionate side before you got involved?
I am not usually one to curse in front of children. I am a firm believer that kids will learn bad words from many people in their lives, and if I am lucky, mom and dad will screw them up long before I make that kind of mistake. I use alternate cursing phrases like "fudge bunnies", shitake mushrooms", "what the fork", and "dear sweet Oden" to express my feelings.
Today, I pretty much broke that rule. The good news was, the kids were strangers. The bad news, was it was in the Christmas section of Hobby Lobby. Going into Hobby Lobby anytime after August requires great patience. I believe that it is a patience that only a Jedi really possesses. Every time I turned to a different aisle, some couple or mother daughter pair was deep in debate or deep in shopping with a cart just taking up the entire place. After multiple aisles, my patience was about to the end. Without thinking, my mouth just let loose the phrase "holy fuck, Batman". I had one older lady glare at me and I realized my inner monologue was turned up too loud.
I kept walking around and luckily avoided any other instances, but have decided that store shopping is now off limits. The moral of my story is this: be good influence, know what makes you curse and don't do it.
I recently read a cute book about leadership. I loved the simple minute long chapters that I could easily take away and use for my long and crazy days. One of the most interesting chapters had to be "Life Lessons from Peter Pan". I thought it sounded crazy too. The premise was pretty simple. You should think happy thoughts, keep your word, have fun, and love your mother.
This seemed oh so lovey-dovey and ewwy-gooey. Something hit me as I was reading the explanations of this. I remember no time that Peter Pan kept his word or loved his mother, or more specifically encouraged others to love their mothers. I thought moment about this and it came to me why. I don't know if I have ever seen the cartoon Peter Pan. What have I seen? Hook and Peter Pan on Once Upon a Time. Hook featured a Peter that was struggling. It was a little unorthodox. Peter on Once Upon a Time can be described in only one way. He was a freaking toolbox. He was sneaky, a trickster, selfish, and super annoying. For the record, I adore Robbie Kay as an actor. I just hated Peter Pan. Now when I think of Peter Pan, I think villain. Even on the Syfy version of Peter Pan a few years ago, Peter was a little pit of a villain. It was his fault that they got sent to Neverland, his fault they lost a friend, his fault the pirates found the fairy dust, and so much more.
I honestly can't decide how I feel about Peter. I want to like him. He rocks green. He hangs out with pretty cool fairy. I also like those life lessons. I just need some more proof that he isn't a kidnapper.
It was fun making family, half lovey dovey thankful posts for Thanksgiving, but I was super off target. I missed a few super rocking buds that make my life totally amazing. Here is a quick shout out to let you know that you are pretty much "the shit."
Amanda Freaking Beasley, it doesn't matter how long the tie goes in between our visits. but when we visit, we always have a good time. We have the best jokes, the best adventures, and sometimes I wonder if we share a brain (politics, entertainment, jokes). Just clarify that we don't have the same taste in music or men, unless we are talking about hot chef.
I was sad that I didn't really have time to cover all of my really cool family members in my Thanksgiving posts. I am going to take a few moments and rapid fire give shout outs to a few that are top notch in my book.
Uncle Randy - I feel like there has been some hostility between so many of us for many years, but the past few years have been great. Something changed between you and my mom and I couldn't thank you enough for it. It is good to know that we are all still a family, even though we are a sad family without grandpa. I'm glad we could all come together for him.
All of the cousins who helped throw me a surprise party for my 30th birthday - Thank you for making a hard birthday bearable. I mean I didn't end up going to the funeral because I got the flu that night, but the fact you all cared enough to get decorations, drinks, and cake was top notch.
To the aunts - I know I have never been close to my aunts, but I appreciate you all. I appreciate that Carolyn supports my business ventures now that I am an adult. I appreciate that Tonya has helped my sister so much over the years.
Thank you to everyone I forgot. I'm sure I don't say it enough.
Joel - You've always been my favorite cousin and I cherish all of our random AIM conversations. AIM is gone now! We have to actually text! This kid, not really a kid, is one of the sweetest guys on the planet. He cared more for my family (on the other side) than some people who were on that side of the family. He also found himself a really good girl, and came to Indiana and got her Vera Bradley.
McKenna - I am so excited you are joining our family! You have been a fantastic influence on Joel for years... seriously years! Who knows where he would be without you!
Jim and Julia - If there was an award for the most entertaining couple ever, you would get it. This may be because you guys are rolling out puns to frazzle my dad and throw him off his game. Jim, you got the relaxed gene of the Sarjeant's so you should be proud of that. Julia, I still use that blanket you made. I have had people ask where I got it and I'm like, it's mine. It was made for me. Go away. I also appreciate the fact you guys got my mom out of this country. She never would have taken an adventure on her own. You deserve a medal.
For the record, I am not neglecting Larry, Stacey, Lafe and Callie! They are all wonderful, but I haven't seen them since I was fairly young! I love seeing them on social media as well!
You know, he may not be immediate family, but he might as well be. My last individual family thankful post before Thanksgiving is for my Uncle Dave. Many of my friends know him as my dad's twin that isn't really his twin. Of the three brothers, they just look a lot alike.
Uncle Dave is just as much of a friend as he is family. He is one of the very few people on this planet that I actually call. If you asked my best friend if I call, she would say it is only when it is serious, someone has died, or the gossip is just THAT good. I have made it a habit to stay in touch with my uncle for various reasons. First off, he is a great guy. Second, he treats all of us like we are his kids even though he probably isn't a huge fan of kids. Third, he always has great advice, which I am almost always in need of. Lastly, he is a lone wolf just like me. It is hard to take advice from people with kids and a family because they have different priorities behind their decisions. Someone that is similar to you and can offer better insights into your world that you might just be glancing over.
I am blessed to have 3 uncles who are all great and all care for all of us. I have just been lucky enough to have one around for almost every holiday and extra random weekends. One day, we still need to start a business.