Up for a cup of tea?

I am sitting enjoying a cup of tea and chatting with my friend about group activities.  Somehow we got on the topic of volunteering. So Gillian and I start talking about how inadequate we feel.

Volunteerism, we all hear about it, we want to do it, but half the time we don’t know how. Volunteering is giving of ourselves in an activity that helps others, without financial gain.  When we do this, we feel good about it, improving our self-worth and sometimes how others view us.

I started writing this and stopped, and then the Oklahoma tornado happened and it was another reminder of how lucky we are.  Help is needed in our communities, we must remember that.   So decide today to give back.

You can volunteer locally, even from home by sharing your skills via the internet, or be adventurous and organize a group of friends and volunteer internationally as a vacation give back.  There are many ways, start small. In 2012, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a decline in volunteerism by 0.3% to 26.5%.  It may appear small but it is a downward trend. Be a catalyst for change in 2013, one volunteer at a time.

Before making a commitment, be honest and evaluate where you are.

  1. Do you prefer to be on a team or to work alone?
  2. Do you like to be in the spot light, or quietly left alone to do your thing?
  3. How much time can you really commit to and be dependable to show up?
  4. What skills can you contribute?
  5. What are you truly passionate about?

Don’t limit yourself, try various opportunities and find the one or two that are right for you.  If you like the organization and the benefit it brings,  you will be more likely to continue to contribute.

Learn more about volunteerism.


   “We make a living by what we get; we make a life by what we give”  

Winston Churchill          

Up for a cup of tea?

I am sitting and enjoying a cup of PG Tips tea and chatting with my friend….

Freddie and I are talking about what to do on Sunday to celebrate Mother’s Day and got to chatting about the origin of this day.

It’s dates back officially to 1914, when it was recognized as a national holiday in the United States.  It all started with Anna Jarvis who was inspired by the work of her mother Ann Jarvis .  In 1858, Ann Jarvis founded the Mother’s Day Club, an organized way for women to work in the community  supporting and improving health conditions for families.  It was successful and expanded to surrounding towns.   During the American Civil War  (1861-1865 ) the Mother’s Day Club worked neutrally supporting both  Confederate and Union soldiers with clothing, food and healthcare.  In 1907, two years after  Ann Jarvis passed away,  Anna held a memorial to her mother.  This sparked her to work tirelessly to have Mother’s Day recognized as a National Holiday.  In 1908, the first Mother’s Day was unofficially celebrated, and six years later it was official.

Over the years, this holiday has been adopted by other countries around the world.   It is celebrated by offering a card or gift, and a myriad of other ways to show appreciation .  Due to its commercialization, it has expanded to include close female maternal figures as well.  I always celebrate my lovely grandmother, Gwen, on this day and offer flowers in memory of my own beautiful mother, Anne.

Even though the 1914 date is official, the first beginnings of Mother’s Day observances began as early as the 1870’s by Julia Ward Howe.  She originally tried to establish a “Mother’s Day for Peace”. A day for women to join together for world peace, however she was never successful.

In the U.S Mother’s Day is celebrated the second Sunday in May.  To protect ownership of the invention, Jarvis trademarked the term “second Sunday in May” and “Mother’s Day”.

In the UK and Ireland, Mother’s Day is celebrated the fourth Sunday in Lent.  In other parts of the world similar celebrations honor mothers at various times of the year.

     It’s a lovely day to show our appreciation, but we should continue to honor our mothers and ourselves every day.


 Up for a cup of tea?

I am sitting and enjoying a cup of PG Tips tea and chatting with my friend….

Ari and I and talking about clothes and the fact that the closet is full, but still we have nothing to wear.  How could that be?  The closet is jammed with things that don’t fit and clothes that have had their day.  It’s all about Spring cleaning and tidying the wardrobe to make room for new things.

Have you felt like chucking lots of things as you clean out those closets and review your summer attire?  Where do you start?  We have such an emotional attachment to that shirt we haven’t worn in 5 years, and yet make the promise that this is the year it gets worn.  Really?  Instead of holding it for another year, think about donating it to goodwill and imagine someone getting joy from wearing it…it may be their favorite piece…be realistic with yourself.

Here are some tips to get started:

  • Don’t think of it as a project or it won’t get done, make it fun with a friend
  • Do it with a friend who will be honest.  It will help you be decisive when wavering
  • Make the rule if that you buy something, then something  must go
  • Think of outfits and what matches
  • Stick to the basics and pepper in some trendy items
  •  Use baskets and containers to be efficient.  It will look nicer too
  • Fold neatly and organize by type of clothing…T-Shirts/ Pants/Jeans etc

Once you start, it will energize you to move into other areas of Spring Cleaning.  Get great tips for organizing your home from Simply B Organzied or Real Simple.  Start small.  If you make things a project they never get done.  A little each day goes a long way.


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Theodore Roosevelt