Call Brings Fulfillment

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A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” -Amelia Earhart

Stephen Patrick Morrisey once said “there is no such thing as good news in America.” I say, “Hogwash! But clearly since each of us are human beings, we all face difficult days and periods throughout our lifetimes.

Did you hear the story about four policeman who pooled their money together ($160) to by food for an elderly man who called 911 to say he was hungry and hadn’t eaten in a few days? True story,  direct from the State of Tennessee. Watch this news clip.


Another random act of kindness has come from these caring public servants since this story.  The police officers have started a small food pantry at the station to help fulfill the needs of other citizens who are struggling. The community has rallied to provide resources to keep the shelves stocked to feed the hungry.

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See you back here on Monday, February 1st. This blog is brought to you by EVVY award-winning author Sue Batton Leonard.

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A Real Peach of a Community

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We can never get a re-creation of community and heal our society without giving our citizens a sense of belonging.Patch Adams

What makes a great community? As an outsider, I’ve noticed things the 2014 Winner of the Coolest Small Town in America, Berlin, Maryland has in common with Steamboat Springs, Colorado, the town I’ve called home for the past seven years.These elements are what, in my opinion, helps a community to thrive.

  • Cohesion between a strong Main Street Association and the local Council on the Arts
  • People who are forward-thinkers, not afraid of change but respect the past.
  • A strong volunteer base who want to contribute to building a town that others will envy.
  • Leaders who understand the history behind the community and what makes it unique.

Berlin, Maryland “Historically Charming & Artistically Alive & Eternally Young” has been the location site of two movies, which no doubt has helped bring notariety to the community. Runaway Bride with Julia Roberts and Richard Gere was filmed there in 1998 and contributed 27.5 million dollars to the local economy. In 2001 Berlin was transformed into a town at the turn of the century with dirt roads, period costumes and horses and carriages for the film Tuck Everlasting. Actors Sissy Spacek, Ben Kingsley and William Hurt starred in the fictional film.

Movie producers as well as the audiences were captivated by the Victorian town center, the tree-lined streets and historic homes and museums in this small town in “Chesapeake Country.”

Want to know more about what makes a great community? Read this article,  and visit the Berlin, Maryland website. Also scroll back to the two previous day’s blogs to see more pictures. Every business in Berlin is worthy of mention on All Things Fulfilling. Due to lack of space, only a small number are featured. Each makes this community a fulfilling destination that reminds us of what it was like to live in charming small town America.

If you are a baby boomer, you’ll appreciate the lyrics of this 1972 song which you’ll probably remember from the crossroads of your life. Listen in as you scroll through these images!

 

Berlin Peach grocery signed

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storefront signed

Berlin house with fan window signed

berlin grey house withflowers signed

Atlantic hotel dining room signed

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Street &Trees in Berlin signed

old delivery van signed

20150808_112127 Yarn shop 2 Jans signed

 Thanks to my twin sister Jan for the photo contributions to this blog. It was wonderful to have an early celebration of our birthday by painting the town together.

Yarn shop looking out Jans signed

 

Yarn shop 3 inside Jan signed

 

 

Globe Theatre signed

Join me tomorrow as I celebrate a special segment of local artists in the place I’ve resided for the past seven years. They make up in part what is unique about the town of Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

This blog is brought to you by the award-winning author of Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

Simply a Ray of Sunshine

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A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows.” ~ Francis of Assisi

On my husband’s side of the family there has been some illness and a life was close to ending. However, things have taken a dramatic turn. I believe part of the reason that there is good news to report is because the person who stepped into the picture to deal with the situation, my husband’s first cousin, is a natural caretaker. In my mind, she’s a healing artist.  It’s what she has done all her life.  The situation could not have been handled more capably by anyone else in the family.

I’m so sorry that the task was so large that it meant uprooting her life for five months and tending to an enormous number of details.  She closed out one phase of her loved one’s life and lined up everything for new beginnings. Thankfully my husband’s cousin is detail oriented, and made sure every loose string was tied up. Thank you, Mary, for being the sunbeam. You, indeed, are God-sent.

sunshine and heartsThe course of events has made me think about how we forget to pay attention to simple everyday acts of kindness until disaster strikes. This article mentions things we can do to brighten the lives of others that perhaps many of us have never even thought of.  Check it out  because as it has been said before “life is not all about us.”

This blog is brought to you by the author of Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

Spirit Not Withstanding

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“A cloudy day is no match for a sunny disposition.” ~ William Arthur Ward

What’s a girl to do when she’s a bystander because she is too young to be a Junior Girl Scout? She creates her own sense of fun, and I loved it.

Look at the joy on this little girl’s face! I’m calling her the “Dazzling Earring Girl.” She went about her way finding a  creative use for the paper roses I had made and given the Girl Scouts while she was waiting for her sister to complete her craft project.

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One never knows where life will take us and “Dazzling Earring Girl” might just have the tag line “jewelry artist” under her name in the future!

You know what I like about the Girl Scouts? Please excuse my bias because I was both a Brownie and a Junior Girl Scout. In my opinion, it is an organization that endorses postive values that parents can teach their children about keeping their values straight in life.

I hope this little girl in the picture remembers to always to seek the light! The good news is on this Thirsty Thursday her joy will dazzle other people. Glad she joined us!

This blog is brought to you by the award-winning author Sue Batton Leonard. For information on her memoir and book of short stories. On Sunday, May 10th I’ll be honoring Mother’s Day on All Things Fulfilling.

 

Building Skills for Great Futures

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The foundation of every state is the education of its youth. ~ Diogenes

Last Friday I attended our monthly meeting of the Yampa Valley University Women. We had a wonderful speaker, Lynna Broyles, from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Northwest Colorado. Her program was so informative and designed to educate people about the programs of this non-profit youth development organization.

Here are the five core programs that are available for boys and girls to get involved with. They make their own choices based on their interests:

  • Character & Leadership
  • Education & Career Development
  • Health & Life Skills
  • The Arts
  • Sports, Fitness & Recreation

Some figures were cited with regards to how many children in the NW Colorado Boys and Girls Club get their only hot meals for the day at school and at the Boys and Girls Club. For me those numbers were astounding and troubling. Thankfully, all youth, regardless of their parents’ socio-economic status can be involved in the program. Scholarships are available for youth who struggle with the annual membership fee ($25/annually).

The clubs are staffed by trained youth development professionals. Many very successful business people, athletes, and prestigious people in our country got a strong foundation through Boys & Girls Clubs. Youth programs as well as literacy programs are so important to the future of children in our country. Often these programs open doors and futures to much greater things. What a gift the Boys and Girls Clubs are to so many children! http://www.bgca.org/newsevents/Pages/GFSH_PSA.aspx

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Moment with childThis blog is brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, author of the EVVY award-winning book Gift of A Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected. For more information on the book which has also won an award in the young adult category, please follow this link.http://amzn.to/1vDFUMt.

 

Artistic Energy Abounds in Steamboat

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Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner of traveling.Margaret B. Runbeck

The 5th annual All Arts Festival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado was this past weekend, and I was busy. On Friday afternoon I browsed booths filled with artisan wares of all kinds – jewelry, photography, sculpture, fiber arts, oil paintings, pottery and more. There was something of interest for everyone.

On Friday evening I ushered at Strings Music Festival, and I was so grateful I was able to see Love Letters. This play, by A.R. Gurney, earned finalist status for a Pulitzer Prize for drama. I adored it. It left me amazed at how two people reading a script could make an evening so engaging. Katherine Ross and Wilfred A Brimley showed their talents, as actors, by drawing me into the storyline immediately, from the first line to the last.

On Sunday morning at the UnitedMethodistChurch, an operatic singer was incorporated into the service. Although fabulous local musical talent is often showcased in our church, Elizabeth Gore-Stanley had come to town over the weekend as part of the Emerald City Opera. Her beautiful rendition of  “Blessings” aptly described the way I was feeling as I listened to her exquisite God-given voice, and thought about this place, Steamboat.

I wrapped up my weekend back at Strings Music Festival ushering.  Lyle Lovett and his big band gave a performance which did not disappoint. All talented musicians in their own right, with albums to their credit. A little bit country, a little bit Texas swing, some rhythm and blues made for a fulfilling evening. Arnold McCuller, Lovett’s sidekick (backup vocalist) was one smooth guy and you can listen to voice and song writing from his album Soon As I Get Paid on his website. http://bit.ly/13yUFog.

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As we move into midweek, this town in the northwest corner of the Rocky Mountains will continue to stay busy with tourists. The nation’s top bikers will pedal their way through Steamboat Springs on August 21 and 22nd as part of the US Pro Biking Challenge “America’s Race.” which begins in Aspen, Colorado and ends in Denver. Breathtaking altitudes (over 12,000 ft), treacherous mountain passes and spectacular scenery will bring over one million visitors to the State to witness this competition.

Come on back to All Things Fulfilling tomorrow. This blog is brought to you by www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com.

Social Entrepreneurs

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Being successful and fulfilling your life’s purpose are not at all the same thing…” ~ Rick Warren

There is an NGO that All Things Fulfilling has been following for a few years called the BOMA project: Prosperity with Dignity. The BOMA Project has lifted North Kenyan women out of poverty by giving them entrepreneurial skills so they can help them selves. If you missed our previous blogs about the mission of this organization, please visit these links.

The founder of the BOMA Project, Kathleen Colson of Dorset, Vermont has been selected as a Rainer Arnhold Fellow. This prestigious fellowship is awarded yearly and it “is offered to 16-20 social entrepreneurs around the world who have promising solutions to the biggest problems that face developing nations.” 

Kathleen Colson1Colson’s vision and spirit, along with the partnerships she has fostered has lead to educational opportunity, advocacy, economic empowerment, leadership and training for women in a part of the world where poverty is widespread.

Today, I would simply like to say Congratulations to Colson and her “team” of people who have been so successful in lifting up 28,000 women and children out of extreme poverty by helping to launch 1380 micro-enterprises in Northern Kenya. The income and savings from the businesses are used to support 23,340 children and 4,668 adults. This group is just one of many NGO’s that have had fulfilling results in helping people in impoverished countries.

To learn more about the BOMA Project’s mission and accomplishments, there are several You Tube videos on the Boma Project Channel. http://bit.ly/1cvIz2d . Check them out.

In the future, I would like to highlight social entrepreneurship here in America on All Things Fulfilling. Please send me suggestions of undiscovered, worthy candidates who have done much to empower women in the U.S.A.  but have not yet reached celebrity spotlight status.

All Things Fulfilling is brought to you by www.CornerstoneFulfillmentService.com, a company specializing in e-commerce and e-marketing for independent publishers.