Allow me to introduce you to Sorrow, in case you haven’t had a chance to visit her site yet. She’s an ingenuous, creative, talented and generous person with a heart of gold. And if you need more convincing, she puts her talent where her heart is, actually doing something tangible to make the world a better place.
For those of you who reside in the US, here is something that might interest you. The National Fatherhood Initiative is putting on a “Fatherhood Means….” challenge, giving you the opportunity to share your memories about your father, or about what it means to be a father. This was brought to my attention, and I found it worthy that an organization such as this one exists, and so I’m passing it on.
Update on Gardasil: I’m not sure what has struck a chord with me about this whole thing, but I was pleased to see in a national American women’s magazine a two-page leaflet summary of the vaccine, based on information found on Gardasil.com. In this summary, Merck & Co Inc. seem to be as intent on providing safety information as they are on promoting the vaccine: they stress the importance of receiving regular cervical cancer screenings, they mention that Gardasil will not treat cervical cancer or genital warts, that Gardasil MAY help guard you from certain types of HPV. The possible side-effects are listed, (but they don’t mention death). This “summary” inserted in popular magazines, comes nearly a year AFTER the vaccine hit the markets in Canada (it’s been given since 2006 in the States and the UK), but better late than never, I guess…….except maybe for the 11 deaths so far that have been attributed to the vaccine, it’s too late for them (I won’t bother linking, you can Google Gardasil deaths……). Am I trying to scare you? Yes.
I try to be as green as I can. I even put forth a few suggestions to my supervisor the other day, on how we can reduce our usage of paper in the workplace. It felt good to be a productive employee who was looking to improve things. So later on that day, after I had emailed my supervisor with my ideas, I was searching for information in our local manual, which is set up on a Word Document; this is different from our national manual, which is online. We use our local manual for instructions that apply to our particular office, kind of like an addendum to the national manual. ANYWAYS……
Because it’s online, when you print from the national manual, you only print that one page that you’re viewing. For the local manual however, if you hit print instead of cutting and pasting the section you want to print to a blank page, you will print the ENTIRE manual, all 70-some pages of it……So guess what I did that wonderful day where I was feeling a little too good about myself for being such a green employee? I forgot to cut & paste the section of the local manual that I needed, and instead I clicked the print icon. After taking in a few sharp breaths, and wanting to cancel the printing operation (but forgetting where I needed to click) in my “énervement” to stop the presses, I clicked the same print button AGAIN!!!! I quickly got up, went to the printer and stood there as casually as possible, wondering who was going to stand up and say “Who’s the tree-killer?” Thankfully, no one paid any mind, and I slunk back to my desk, a wasteful stack of papers in my hands. I sat there, dumbfounded at my own dumbness……I still have those papers on my desk, as a reminder NOT TO DO THAT AGAIN. One-third of a tree is needed to make 3,000 sheets of paper. (Dear Supervisor, if you read this, I apologize.).
Books I’ve recently enjoyed: Meditations from Conversations with God, by Neale Donald Walsch. I’ll have to buy a copy of this booklet, the one I have I borrowed from the library, and it must go back soon. It’s been by my side for a few weeks and I refer to it constantly.
Parent As Mystic, Mystic As Parent, by David Spangler. A different approach to parenting, one that’s a little more in line with my soul. As with all parenting books, take from it what you need. This book was easy to read in a busy day, it’s not necessary to read it cover to cover, you can jump around. It gives many hands-on things to do as a parent, but it also speaks to your parent-soul, it allows you to meditate what you’re reading so that it becomes a part of you, you’re not just reading a how-to manual.
Spirit Games: 300 Fun Activities That Bring Children Comfort and Joy, by Barbara Sher. Another book I need to buy (sigh). I have all these bookmarks in it and am trying to write down the activities I feel could benefit the kids & I, before I bring it back to the library. I know, I could photocopy some of it, but I’ve already been less-than-green lately….. Anyhow, I’ve already brought one of the activities into our lives, and you probably already do this without thinking, but at snack time before bed, I make it a point to SIT DOWN with the kids at the table instead of being busy in the kitchen while they eat; and while I’m sitting there, we talk, and I ask them “What made you smile today?” We all get a chance to say one thing, then the dialogue is open to talk (or not) about the smiley thing. It’s just a small way to reinforce the positive. My son P is a very enthusiastic participant in everything, but my daughter, who’s 11, liked to make it seem that talking about what makes you smile is silly, and the first few times, she would roll her eyes and sigh and say something just for the sake of saying something. She’s coming around, though. I think she just likes me sitting there listening to her talk. And that makes me smile.
This week, at work, our Employee Assistance Program buddied up with our Employment Equity Committee at work and presented a Lunch and Learn session, where you could sign up for a presentation on Self-Care Strategies for Single Parents. I thought it would be good to see what was offered and so I signed up to spend my lunch on Thursday gaining some new insights. There were about 15-20 people in attendance, all women except for one young guy (which I thought was very progressive of him to sign up). The presenter was a very empathetic woman (whom I knew already as she worked with my ex-husband in counselling), and in the 45 minutes that we had, we received good information on the importance of taking care of yourself when you’re a single parent, and all the resources available in the community. We were going through an extensive list of self-care strategies (hobbies, friendships, relaxing), when the presenter came upon the following: Learn about visualization and meditation. Except that she read it out loud as Learn about visualization and MEDICATION. Well, we all just roared at her Freudian slip!
“Curiosity is, in great and generous minds, the first passion and the last.” Samuel Johnson