Goodwill in the Workplace

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Parenting is the stewardship of the precious lives that come to you through birth, adoption or second marriages. Leadership is the stewardship of the precious lives that come to you by people walking through your door and agreeing to share their gifts with you.” ~ Bob Chapman

Any one who has read the award-winning memoir Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected comes to know through the story that the “saving grace” who appeared at a door one day became a valued and loved part of the family.

Sure, she earned a living working as household help but she played a significant role in the fabric of a family who was richly rewarded by the human traits she brought to the workplace. Her life lessons were shared from a unique and often humourous perspective.

Everybody-Matters-coverThe other day I came across an article called The Power of Treating Employees Like Family.  I share the article with our readers today because of the insight it gives into a business story and also into the goodwill that can be nurtured between human beings through their jobs.

Over the course of my lifetime, I’ve had several employers who have treated me as family. What it a difference it makes in how your feel about your job, your co-workers, your capabilities and your willingness to go above and beyond. I’m grateful that I’ve been able to experience that in the workplace. In my opinion, in makes a difference.

This blog is brought to you by the author of the EVVY award-winning memoir, an anthology of stories Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected and

short stories Lessons of Heart & Soul.

Reflections of Parents

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Yesterday, November 8th, was National Parents as Teachers Day.

food-for-thought-lectures-to-nourish-your-mind-86132072Children often take on their parents values, political views, styles of communication, the way they treat others and view the world. It helps to remember that you are raising a future adult rather than a child. “He or she is just a child” is an idea that some parents find hard to give up as their child grows. Before you realize it your child becomes a teen.  If you’ve never asked them to take on responsibilities it will be reflected when the teenage years begin.

The other day I read a statement that really made an impression on me, it said “If your child can use a cellphone, he or she can run a washing machine.” I’d like to add to that –  and set the table, load the dishwasher, feed the pets, take out the trash. A child no matter what age can contribute to the everyday responsibilities of a household.

If there are values or behaviors that  you’d LOVE  to see come back and haunt you, instill and teach those things to your children. Thoughtful parenting takes work. Just a little food for thought.

This blog is brought to you by award-winning author Sue Batton Leonard. For information about Gift of a Lifetime: Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected.


Colored Me Beautifully


Do you remember back when civilty and common courtesy ruled? Please understand I share this story as an example of those times, not for self-serving purposes. I mean that.

My mother recently went through her hope chest, and sent some wonderful things that she had been saving for me. I couldn’t believe what she held on to for so many years.

In 1974, when I was 19 years old, I had a car accident. It was nothing more than a small fender bender and I think my Dad paid for the damages out of his pocket they were so minimal. At the time I thought it was the biggest tragedy that had ever befallen me. Never did it occur to me that I had been through much worse than that and survived the experience.

My twin sister was in the passenger seat and there were no injuries other than to the spirit. I was beside myself. (You know how teenage girls tend to over react, right?) I felt awful I had damaged someone else’s car and my parent’s vehicle.

I couldn’t believe the kindness the man that I rammed into showed me. He offered to come home with me to help me tell my parents because I was such a wreck. My sister can testify that the man upheld his offer.

Furthermore, after it was all done and over, the wife of the man I rammed into sent this note to my parents to let him know their car had been repaired and all was well. No hard feelings.

note about my car accident when 19 correct position

(Truthfully, I don’t have any clue what I said or did to warrant the comments on this note.)

Today’s message on All Things Fulfilling is for all parents. I want to share what John Locke once said, “We are like cameleons, we take our color and our hue of our moral character, from those who are around us.” ~ John Locke

Paint a picture of people

Thank you, Mom & Dad. I am so glad I grew up in an era of old-fashioned civilty and you raised me to have a strong moral compass. According to Locke, your colors must have rubbed off on me.  I hope I always stay true to my values.

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, Sue Batton Leonard.





Cradled in a Hammock of Love

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There is nothing that moves a loving father’s soul quite like his child’s cry.” ~ Joni Eareckson Tada

Happy Fathers Day to all dads everywhere!

In retrospect, it makes me laugh when I think that we gave my father a hammock as a present one Father’s Day. If you read my memoir you will understand that my dad spent enough time rocking away his time when I was little, soothing my crying!

Peeps with his big catch May 2013He set a fine example as a father figure. My dad was not the kind of father who went off to the office and  left the raising of us kids entirely to our mother.  He was an active participant.  A father’s impact on his children is so important to their healthy development.

We kids have been his loyal companions participating in all the things he’s always  liked to do -boating, fishing, skiing, building, crabbing, gardening and much more.

Today, I’d like to acknowledge all that my father has taught me and all that he put up with us kids. My twin sister and I were constantly nagging at him about this or that. “You girls are going to drive me crazy,” he’d say, when we became teenagers. Admittedly, my sister and I were enough to drive him cuckoo with our double trouble.

It’s no wonder he turned completely gray so prematurely at 27. I was probably way more than half the cause of it. (My son inherited his genes on that one!) It’s evident if you read my memoir I was lucky. I got to spend extra one-on-one time with my dad because of the circumstances of my birth. My sister and brothers have had her fair share of days alone with my father, however. Since I married, I’ve  always lived far from the rest of the family.

Even though my father thought we’d drive him crazy, there was never any no doubt that he loved us kids. We can just feel it and words are not necessary to explain it.

Happy Father’s Day, Peeps. 

P.S. I’m pretty sure that my sister and I didn’t drive him crazy! He is 86 years old and still very sharp!  He can remember the names of almost anyone he has met before. In my opinion, his four children and eight grandchildren are what has really kept him going.

This blog brought to you by Sue Batton Leonard, author of Gift of a Liftetime:Finding Fulfilling Things in the Unexpected.Sue’s memoir See you tomorrow on All Things Fulfilling.


Fulfilling Content and Issues


“What do I write about?” I asked myself several years ago when I began this blog. It was a risky and uncertain day when my first writing went public. As time went on, I gradually formed and honed my vision for what I wanted to share – issues that were near and dear to my heart such as independent publishing (books, film, music), education, business, career, parenting, faith and all kinds of fulfilling things. Fortunately, I do not have a one track mind. And as you may have noticed, my mind flits from subject to subject. You never know from day to day what you will find. The more I have written, the more my passion has grown for what I am doing.

On Friday, I received my year end blog reports. I am very content, the issues I write about have interest. Here is what the report stated.

  • All Things Fulfilling had enough readers to fill all the majestic spaces and seats in the Sydney Opera House nine times over.
  • There was an increase of 7,000 readers over the previous year.
  • All Things Fulfilling reached 141 countries
  • The busiest day was February 25, 2013 with 3,097 readers – it was also my son’s 25th birthday – that’s pretty neat!
  • The subject I blogged about that day – a book written by Kenneth W Merrill & Barbara Gueldner called Social & Emotional Learning: Promoting Mental Health & Academic Success.  Here is the link to the 2/25/13 blog:

I need to work hard to continue to provide fulfilling content!  I have faith that with the continued growth of independent publishing (and now with the popularity of e-books), fulfilling subjects to write about this year will be plentiful.


What else does this report mean to me?  Dear Readers:

Thank you bottom ofheart

This blog brought to you by Do return to All Things Fulfilling tomorrow.


Reading into Thoughts

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We buy books because we believe we’re buying the time to read them. ~ Warren Zevon

Good story line, great characters, mystery, romance, captivating dialogue or cover, identification with place or setting – all good reasons why people buy books.

I never much thought that hope may be a reason for buying a book. But, yes, as I ponder the idea, it is true. We do buy books anticipating we will find time to read them. And we trust there will be something that speaks to us from within the pages.

man with child readingI recently read The Light between Oceans by author M.L. Stedman. What a moral dilemma the characters in this novel face. It is a very compelling, thought provoking story. The book made me stop and consider all the reasons parents take the plunge and bear children. On the list is the same element of hope we have in buying novels.

We hope we will have enough time to love our children they way we ought to and we will have a fulfilling relationship with them. As with books, what’s the point of having children in the home if we can’t appreciate them, and if they do not remain in our hearts and minds forever?

There is a blog I’ve been following for about a year by Tom Dawson, author of Cottonwood. . Dawson’s commentary on being a father  and grandfather in his “Pieces” column is worthy of reading. Follow the link, and scroll down until you see the article titled “The Promise.”

Just another independent thought this morning about books and children. Do return tomorrow to All Things Fulfilling.

Intuition in Children

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Intuition is a spiritual faculty and does not explain, but simply points the way.” – Florence Scovel Shinn

Last week at the TED conference, a two or three minute video clip of children talking about being were scared was aired. The children voiced their solutions of moving away from the emotive feelings that come with being scared by thinking of happy things – such as pizza, puppy dogs, pretty images.

How astute for young children to realize the value of visualization and to know the importance of the power of the brain to bring about change in our emotions.

In my opinion, raising perceptive children in this day and age is so important. Beyond teaching children they have the ability to change how they are feeling themselves, being well-tuned into our intuition can mean the difference between sensing if our safety is in jeopardy. This is useful for children and adults. A heightened sense of perception can also help steer children in the right direction in life, and aid them in having a strong moral compass.

A psychologist in one segment of the TED presentation spoke of the dangers of parents inhibiting a crucial developmental step in children by not letting children learn by their own mistakes and make their own decisions, within reason. As a person who has always been interested in psychology, this TED session was fascinating.

Raising intuitive childrenCheck out this publication, available in e-book format,Raising Intuitive Children  by authors Caron B Goode and Tara Paterson.

Co-author Dr. Goode is the founder of the e-learning school, the Academy for Coaching Parents International, which trains and certifies coaches for parents and families. She is also the founder of the HeartWise.™ Click for info & ordering more books by Caron B Goode

Visit us again tomorrow on All Things Fulfilling, where sharing independent thoughts, words and views is all part of the business. This blog is brought to you by

Cultural Differences in Children

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Children are unpredictable. You never know what inconsistency they’re going to catch you in next. ~Franklin P. Jones

Raising a child, so far, has been the most rewarding time of my life. I miss those days and I find it interesting to watch others interact with their young children, now that I am well beyond that stage of mothering. I ‘m now the parent of an adult.

Make no mistake, for every mother and father there are lots of child raising challenges. Childrens actions are not always “angelic.”  I, like most parents, wanted to guide my child as best as I could but I know that all of my words to my child were not Godlike. Because we are all human beings, with our own flaws and downfalls, there is no such thing as being a “perfect parent.”

bringing up babeAuthor, Pamela Druckerman has written a book Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting. This publication gives insight into the contrasts between raising children the American way and how the French bring up their children. As an American living in Paris with little children, she has gained new perspectives on what makes American children behave the way they do.

To listen to a short audio book review on National Public Radio (NR) about Druckerman’s publication, and a developmental approach to parent/child interaction that is very different to the American way, please visit this link.

When I see the actions of children and their parents out in public, and there are less than positive things happening, I try to remember that I am witnessing just one quick moment in the long day of the life of a parent. All things must be considered before being too critical. Parenting well is a very difficult task.

Visit us again tomorrow on All Things Fulfilling, where sharing independent thoughts, words and views is all part of the business. This blog is brought to you by

Keeping Art In Perspective

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Art allows us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time. ~ Thomas Merton 

I chuckled to myself yesterday. Why is it that when we parents ask our children, no matter what age they are, what they are doing they always reply with a pat answer of “nothin’?” 

The other day,  I checked in on my son’s blog. I found he ‘s not coming clean with me. He posted his year in review and quite to the contrary, he’s been one busy young creative. And he forgot to mention in his list of accomplishments that he also has a fulltime job and sometimes teaches his craft of independent filmmaking, too.

Since he can take a good ribbin’ all in good humor, I am going to make a request of him for the coming year. I am going to ask him to every once in a while, take a deep breath, relax, and do exactly what he tells me he is doing – nothin’! 

We all tend to overextend ourselves in this fast paced world and sometimes need to practice the art of relaxation. There is a good article posted by about the importance of putting our feet up and doing something just for ourselves.

It’s wise to set aside a little time weekly, just to BE, and that means something different to each of us. I guess, right now it is my time to BE a mother speaking. 

art is part of lifeAs the parent of an artist, I need to remember,  for my son’s sake, there is not much distinction between working at his profession, and doing something pleasurable. Both bring inspiration and joy.  It is all part of living a fulfilling life.

Namaste, my son, I bow to you for all that you do!

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The Power of Love


The simple act of reassurance from another human being becomes a tool of the spirit.” ~John Ortberg, Jr. 

“Ok, so, I bawled yesterday in church and had to pull out the Kleenex.  It all began with the christening of a little baby. It took me back to 24 years ago when my husband and I were standing at the font with our little one.

I didn’t fall apart until the after the baptism was almost over. As the congregation began singing “Child of Blessing, Child of Promise”, the water works started. I couldn’t sing; I just listened. The melody and words made me feel the embracing power of love, hope, faith and all good things that support children in their development.

My tears were only momentary. When our minister started his sermon on friendship, his commentary about Facebook friends was hysterical. I could relate completely. On a more serious note the pastor  also talked about what it means to have friends who stick by you through thick and thin. That was inspiring.

The message was craftily brought around to include the words of a song written in 1971 by Carole King. We watched a short video of one of King’s performances singing that trademark song “You’ve Got a Friend” to a packed audience. By the end of the video, I and many others in the congregation were singing along, with huge smiles on our faces. I carried that uplifted feeling with me until the day’s end.

Week after week, as I sit in the pew, I am reminded of the art of delivering a good sermon. If every minister had talent like ours does to  communicate  such a relatable message , every church in America would be standing room only.

Thank you, Reverend Tim, for all you do in healing the spirits of our people. And I just want to know –  Are you Facebook friends with the old guy that was standing in line in front of me waiting to shake your hand after the sermon?” He doesn’t really look like he knows how to turn on a computer. Could it be that you know him from another of your networking circles?

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