Volunteerism and Your Family

Volunteering in Your CommunityDrink in the giving spirit of the season. Our changing and sometimes challenging economy has compelled many of us to reach out more than ever, family-to-family, neighbor-to-neighbor and throughout our community. Finding extra time to give may not always be easy, but the rewards for a family that volunteers together can be lifelong. It can provide an opportunity to share quality together time while serving a greater good, teaching valuable life lessons and of course, helping those people in need.

By volunteering as a family, you can accomplish more in less time, help ease the apprehension of new experiences since everyone’s together and foster a passion for volunteerism that historically will lead to generations of family members who will lend their hands, minds and voices to causes for years to come.

This holiday season, as you prepare for another year ahead, consider adding one or more of these family volunteer ideas to your family calendar over the next twelve months:

  • Giving Back Brigade: Visit a veteran’s home or hospital and offer to interview our brave men and women and tell their story, or organize a board game day to say thank you for their service and lift their spirits.
  • Furry friends Foundation: Collect pet food, rags, pet carriers, blankets, treats and toys and needed items for your local animal shelter.
  • Book It: Arrange a book drive for an underprivileged school or have a read-a-thon at a local children’s home, nursing home or hospital.
  • Mother Earth Makeover: Why not arrange a cleanup? Whether in conjunction with your local community organizations or just as a group or neighborhood, get a team together to clean up your neighborhood, a playground, beach or park and take care of our little patch of Mother Earth!
  • Child Watch: Help collect pajamas, sneakers, socks, bath items, backpacks, school supplies and more for children living in local shelters. Call ahead to find out what’s on the top of their wish lists!
  • Homebound Helpers: Visit the homebound in your area. They often could use help with gardening, yard cleanup, simple household repairs, grocery shopping, delivering prescriptions, driving to the doctor’s office, etc. Many too, just would enjoy the company. Playing cards or a board game, or enjoying a meal with a family are gifts they treasure.

However your family lends their helping hands, know that by fostering that spirit of giving all year around, we certainly get as much or more than we receive. I wish you every blessing this holiday season and a safe and extraordinary new year ahead!

Self Check Out!! *

I really like the self check-out in the grocery store. It has made many trips fast and fairly painless for me. I don’t like standing in line 10 minutes to check out when it only took me 2 minutes to get my stuff.  I also don’t like being behind someone who has chosen a very busy time of day to learn the process of self check out.  Can you tell that struggle with patience?  😀

The instructions are on the screen for all to see. Hint: If you can’t read, then please –  leave this part to the professionals!  By the way, if you have more than 15 items, you probably should let the professional checker handle it!  I love the kids who lean on the bagging scale and force the machine to call for the attendant to reset.  Other people have stage-fright – “it’s like with all these people behind me, I’m freaking out!”  The way professional baseball players & singers avoid stage fright is practice!

The best way to learn to use self check-out is go about 9 PM or 9 AM and take your  sweet time because there probably won’t be anyone in line at that point. Please understand,  I’m not trying to dog out the slow pokes who make the self check out way tougher than it has to be – please just  know when to say when and use the professional check-out clerk!

Please don’t take this personally – just hurry up!

*please detect the sarcasm sprinkled throughout :-)