New Wonders Will Be Revealed

Years ago, when I was young, I had opinions on what would I do, if “such and such” happened in my life. I think that when most of us hear of an experience that someone has, we think “well if that happened to me, this is what I would do”. We sometimes don’t agree with the decision that another has made, when that same thing happened to them.

When life does hand us lemons, and we are the one trying to make lemonade out of it, many times we come to a totally different decision. There are many reasons for this. Each of life’s lemons come to us wrapped up in a different series of circumstances. You could look at multiple experiences of someone losing a loved one to violence, and you would find that each instance was handled in a different way. This is because although the label may be the same “man killed by random shooting”, the circumstances in each case tell their own unique story.

In 1995 Tariq a pizza delivery man was shot and killed by a 14 year old gang member. Initially Azim, Tariq’s father could barely function. But he came to understand that the 14 yr old boy named Tony who killed his son, was also a victim. He felt called to forgive Tony, and became friends with Tony’s grandfather and guardian. He started a foundation to help kids stop killing other kids. He began talking with kids in schools about the realities of that lifestyle and the importance of making right choices.

He made lemonade out of his lemons. This foundation (http://tkf.org/) has grown into an organization of 13 full time staff members and 30 volunteers that mentor over 20,000 students each year. In the article I read, in 13 years they had touched eight million kids (the foundation is now over 20 years old). But I would bet that if you have asked him if this is the road he would take if someone killed his son, this is not the answer he would have given. His unknown road that he journeyed on revealed what kind of man he truly was. This is forgiveness in action.

We are all on a road, a journey to discover who we really are. What we are capable of becoming. Buddha says “No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.” Azim saved himself by walking the path of true forgiveness. He wanted to not only prevent other innocents from being killed, he wanted to save those other victims “kids” becoming killers themselves. His difficult road has lead to a beautiful destination – saving others.

What I have learned in life, is to hope that I can emulate the grace I see in others lives, as they grapple with life’s lemons. That until I find myself in that same hard place, I don’t really know what my decision will be. I do know that there is no turning back. So each decision needs to be made in prayer and meditation, with that understanding.

What I have learned from the lemons in my own life, is that I no longer allow someone to make me swallow up my soul, and dam up the words in my heart. That I don’t have to apologize for my imperfections, and allow the darkness of others to cover up my light. This is who I am, a woman of deep strength who keeps walking the path, knowing that new wonders are going to be revealed right around the next bend.

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Lemonade Maker Debbie Allen

Debbie Allen is a LemonadeMaker. Like many other LemonadeMakers, she created a foundation called “Shelby’s Rules”, after her daughter died. She is working hard to educate teens of the dangers of alcohol poisoning, to prevent other families from losing their children to it. If the other girls with her had called for help, her death could have been avoided. They didn’t realize the seriousness of what was happening with Shelby, and thought she just needed to sleep it off.
Shelby Lyn Allen was a 17 year-old 11th grade student. On the first night of Christmas break in 2008, Shelby and her friends started drinking. Shelby became violently ill and was semi-conscious when her friends left her propped up over the toilet. When she was discovered the next morning, she could not be revived.
In the aftermath of this tragedy, Debbie began asking questions. Talking with other teens, she realized that most of them had no clue that drinking just a few too many swallows of an 80 proof alcohol, like vodka, can kill you. As unfair as this seems, if you are a girl, your risk is increased by variables such as fluctuating hormone levels and smallness of frame.
Debbie also realized that most adults have no clue about the dangers of alcohol poisoning. Everyone knows that excessive drinking can make you sick (praying to the porcelain god) or have you make a fool of yourself (dancing on the table). Maybe you will even suffer a nasty hangover. But letting a friend “sleep it off” can easily turn into them falling into a deadly coma or vomiting in their sleep, and choking to death.
Once alcohol poisoning has begun the only effective treatment is to get the poisoned person to a hospital emergency room, provide breathing assistance as needed and provide IV therapy (nutrients). Most importantly, this care must be provided immediately to be effective and because of the possibility of brain damage every minute counts. Alcohol poisoning causes the brain to shut down vital organ processes, including breathing. If your breathing stops, your heart stops, you die. By all accounts, if breathing is assisted by intubation (breathing tube) the body will rid itself of alcohol and you will survive.
Shelby’s untimely and ultimately preventable death has devastated Debbie’s family. Shelby made poor choices that night, but those choices should never have led to her death. It is the hard truth that despite our best efforts to protect them, in the end our teenagers safety, their very lives can come down to other young people knowing when and how to ask for help.
If you have teenagers, please get this film to help your teens understand the dangers of binge drinking. “The Unconcious Truth” is now available on DVD and at tyla.org. Contact TYLA at 800-204-222 ext. 1529 to request a copy. This is a film that highlights the dangers of teen binge drinking – perfect to incorporate into high school and community alcohol education programs!

Our dreams are calling us

How dare you settle for less when the world has made it so easy for you to be remarkable. – Seth Godin – Author and Speaker
Our dreams are calling us. Are we answering them or putting them to voice mail, because we don’t want to have that inner conversation with ourselves. What causes us to put things on hold? How many of your dreams do you have in voice mail waiting for a return call?
We all do this in some way. I know that if someone compliments me the first thought in my mind is discounting what they said.
When I was growing up my sister closest in age to me was always the pretty one, the beautiful one. She is 18 months younger and her body matured faster than mine. She is several inches taller than my 5’3″. I was the smart one. This comparison ran through our childhood. She to this day carries that role of not being smart, even thought it isn’t true, and I carry the role of not being pretty.
This past few weeks my personal FB page has really been growing. I think that FB has been showing my photo for my personal page up in “the people you know timeline”. My guess is that it is a combination of how many of you wonderful people are “Liking” our LemonadeMaker posts and page (Thank You!!!) and, as I am part of several large groups I end up having a lot of similar friends. I also think that some people figured out I am the founder of LemonadaMakers and request my personal fb friend page too.
However it is happening, there has also been some of those requests that even though I try to screen them turn out to be men looking at my picture and requesting a friendship. When they say they like my smile – which is the usual first comment they make, I immediately think something negative like that’s because you don’t see the rest of me.
Why do we do that? What is it that causes us to turn away from a compliment about our looks, the quality of our work – anything that seems personal? People could compliment me about my children or grandchildren and I don’t turn away from that. Only if it is personal about me.
There was a commercial video I saw a few months back talking about the phrase “sorry” when we mean “excuse me”. We are apologizing when we didn’t do anything wrong It was by Pantene the shampoo company and it really reflected how many times we use it when we really mean something else.
We open a office door to talk to someone and say “sorry”. We brush by someone and say “sorry”. The list goes on. Look for it in the next few weeks, how many times you or another women says “sorry” when what should be said is “excuse me”. The suggestion is that we feel undeserving, and so say “I’m Sorry” for taking up your time, for taking up space, for thinking that I might have something to contribute.
Sheryl Sandberg was really talking about this when she said “we’ve got to get women to sit at the table.” She talked about how she went to a conference room for a meeting and the women were not sitting at the conference table, they were sitting around the table in the extra chairs against the wall. They were doing this even though there were empty seats at the conference table.
She felt that a big piece of why we don’t take a seat at the table is because we don’t want the label of “bossy” and the other “B” word when we take the lead. We shouldn’t be afraid to be as ambitious as men. We should ask for what we want – the raise, the promotion, to take the lead. We shouldn’t be afraid to be told we have a beautiful smile.
So I am ending this with my most favorite quote by Marianne Williamson because – How dare any of us settle for less when the world is waiting for us to be remarkable!
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
― Marianne Williamson, A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of “A Course in Miracles”

KidsEat!

If you are a child on the school lunch program, what happens on the weekends when you are not in school? Many of these children don’t have sufficient food at home to eat during the weekend.

Lynda is a 20 yr volunteer at the Boys and Girls Club in Murray, Utah. In her state it is estimated that one out of five children go hungry each day. She saw for herself that these children needed help.

Lynda created KidsEat! a nonprofit that provides these children with backpacks that contact seven meals in them so that the children have sufficient meals all week long. She is currently providing about 50 backpacks to children each week and estimated that this number will increase to 150 by year end.

Congratulations are in order to Lynda because her organization received the Pay It Forward grant to help pay for some of the costs for her great work. A true LemonadeMaker! Thank you for all of your hard work for the children.

Her website:  http://www.kidseatutah.org/

See more:  http://kutv.com/featu…/pay-it-forward/pay-it-forward-kidseat

 

At 14 he is already a hero

At 14 he is already a hero. He smelled smoke, saw the fire and grabbed a fire extinguisher and ran over to the neighboring apartment. When he saw his disabled neighbor struggling to get out of the apartment, he rushed over and got him out of the building.

The 62 yr old neighbor said his dog was still inside, so he rushed back in and found the dog and brought him outside too. Then to be sure no one else was still inside the building, he went back in a 3rd time calling foranyone that needed help.

The firefighters said that he instinctively did everything that they are trained to do. He said he learned about the physics of fire in school. It is clear that a future firefighter has been born.

See more:  http://www.nydailynews.com/…/calif-teen-saves-62-year-old-d…

Carrie Fisher is a total badass

Carrie Fisher is a total badass. Her recent article in Huffington Post has quote after quote the reflects that.

She says, “Well, I am hoping to get the centerfold in Psychology Today. … Now, it seems every show I watch there’s always someone bipolar in it! It’s going through the vernacular like ‘May the force be with you’ did. But I define it, rather than it defining me.” – that is the thing about any illness we have, YOU define it, don’t let it define you.

The actress, who we will all be seeing in December in the next installment of Stars Wars roles out, has been speaking out on mental illness for more than 10 years — something that was almost unheard of in Hollywood at the time she began. She says, “One of the things that baffles me (and there are quite a few) is how there can be so much lingering stigma with regards to mental illness, specifically bipolar disorder. In my opinion, living with manic depression takes a tremendous amount of balls. … At times, being bipolar can be an all-consuming challenge, requiring a lot of stamina and even more courage, so if you’re living with this illness and functioning at all, it’s something to be proud of, not ashamed of.” Again, DON’T let any illness define you, be proud of what you can do, despite the illness.

She lives everyday with her illness but still says, “Stay afraid, but do it anyway. What’s important is the action. You don’t have to wait to be confident. Just do it and eventually the confidence will follow.” This is great advice for all of us – STAY AFRAID, DO IT ANYWAY.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/…/carrie-fisher-mental-health…

Taylor Swift Pay it Forward

Last year some frat boys totally nailed the Taylor Swift song, Shake It Off. Their You Tube went viral and she said she would get them tickets to her tour in 2015.

Sure enough when she reached Kentucky, they received two tickets each to all of the Delta Sigma Phi – Beta Mu boys.

Now here is the good part, no make that great part. Instead of going to the concert with dates, they donated all of the tickets to the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the Bluegrass. Truly a pay it forward. The kids had never been to a concert before. Truly something that those kids will never forget. You can see how each of those kids as adults will remember how happy and excited they were, and they will pay it forward when they are older.

These boys are Lemonademakers.

See more:  http://www.wkyt.com/home/headlines/Viral-fraternity-video-leads-to-Taylor-Swift-tickets-for-dozens-of-Kentucky-kids-334913121.html