May 19, 2017 – FRENCH FRIES FOR ALL!

May 19, 2017 – FRENCH FRIES FOR ALL!

World Hunger is a major problem. World-wide, 21,000 people die each DAY from hunger!! Many of them are children. Americans waste an average of 15% of the food they buy each year. That equals $165 BILLION  per year in America alone! We buy 7 bananas at Stop and Shop and at the end of the week, we throw out 3 brown, soft, lumpy, oozing blobs from our fruit bowl. OR, if we are feeling inspired, we put them in the freezer with the intention of making a “nice banana bread someday”…and we don’t. We throw the frozen, brown blob in the Ziploc bag in the freezer, right into the garbage 3 months later. Often, we bring the leftovers from that delicious meal we ate at Dry Dock, only to throw it away, container and all, 4 days later. We are a wasteful society when it comes to food. I bet we can all think of examples when we have tossed food. In a matter of seconds, food on a plate goes from “dinner” to “garbage” with one scoop down the disposal in the sink!

And there are rules that work against us. You can’t donate leftover food if it has already been opened. So, the whole 6 foot sandwich with only one slice taken from it, has to go in the garbage. OR, the salad from Stew Leonard’s that was mistakenly opened and closed right back up is also known as garbage. No one can eat it at a shelter or any place else, even though two minutes earlier all of your friends at the party could have eaten it, but they didn’t. They were already full!

My whole life I have battled food. I have paid HUNDREDS, if not THOUSANDS, of dollars to Weight Watchers (YES, I am a lifetime member). I have bought every “caffeine pill” in the aisles of CVS, and I have gone to hypnosis for weight loss. Food and I have a LOVE, LOVE, HATE relationship. It calls to me and teases me and I pay to have it not stay with me! I know all the lines….”NOTHING TASTE AS GOOD AS THIN FEELS” or “ONCE ON THE LIPS and FOREVER ON THE HIPS”….or “BLT’s are BITES, LICKS and TASTES”.  I have nibbled a bite from my sons’ plates and eaten the leftover crusts from my daughters’ pizza! I, personally, have paid so much money to buy food, throw away food, and then try to get rid of the pounds I gained from the food. I can’t even imagine a grand total! 

So…on May 19th, on a trip to Citifield for a Mets vs. Angels game, I had a FIRST!!  I was standing behind the seated section by the bar. There they were; an order of french fries with a corner of the container filled with ketchup! It hit me! I have never eaten leftovers from a stranger’s plate. Someone had walked away, leaving the french fries there…all alone. If an employee of Citifield had walked by to clear the tables right before me, those salty and still-warm french fries would have been referred to as “garbage”. In one second and one split decision and I was eating them. Ed joined me and Brian nearly gagged when I dipped a second one in the ketchup!  And, although I felt like I was guilty of stealing someone’s fries, which I kind of was doing, the reality was that someone had abandoned those poor french fries! I have to admit, they were delicious!

So now, on my list of firsts, I can add that I have personally done my share to conquer the “wasted food epidemic” in America!   

Let’s go Mets!!

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 31, 2016 “THE BIG TIP”

The day after I announced my NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION for 2017, my daughter gave me John Maxwell’s book, Intentional Living: Choosing a Life that Matters, to read. SO I DID!!! Of course I loved it…..just finished it. The book gave me lots of things to think about. The book is about living a life that is significant because it has been lived intentionally. For me this year, I hadn’t really thought about doing things for the sake of significance, I just wanted to do things I have never done before. However, Mr. Maxwell did get me thinking! I know I am sharing my journey so that I will be held accountable (to myself!), but maybe it is also meant to inspire others along the way to join me in experiencing life in some ordinary ways.

I guess deep down, perhaps there is a more significant reason for me to publish my journey of experiences on this blog. The reality is that we have no guarantee that tomorrow will be there for any of us, never mind next week or next year, so the business of living should be kind of intentional and it should be lived to the fullest! If nothing else, I do truly pray that I have passed the message of taking advantage of each day to accomplish something new along to my children, at a minimum, and maybe in a broader sense I have helped to inspire others to do something new along the journey of their own lives.

In Intentional Living, on page 226, Mr. Maxwell writes about “possessing an abundance mindset” as opposed to a “scarcity mindset”. He claims there are people who live a life afraid that what they may need might not come along again so they tend to hold back and are reluctant to give freely to make a significant impact on others or for themselves. Those people would have a “scarcity mindset”. He makes the statement that they need to keep a piece of the pie because there might not be another pie. However, the “abundance mindset” is a completely opposite way of living. This mindset allows you to simply rely on the fact that the universe will “bake you another pie” and you will ultimately have what you need. The Universe is a constant resource to you. I liked this part of the book. It rang true to me. As I thought about it, I do believe that “the Universe” has always known what I needed. It may not have always been what I thought I needed, but when I looked back on the chain of events that got me to a certain destination or to a certain point along the way or to a new opportunity, I realize that a person, an event, or a previous opportunity suddenly made sense, even though I may have cried a few tears along the way. It often isn’t until the “looking back” part that it became “ABUNDANTLY CLEAR” to me that there was a path or a door that needed to be cleared for me to walk through. And the Universe gave me the resources to see the path or the door.

So 2017 will begin tomorrow! And, this thought of Abundance has been hanging around in my head. I decided that I will start today to pass along the “abundance” I have to someone I don’t really know in hopes that the receiver will live a life with an “abundance mindset”. Hopefully, my actions will open a door or clear a path of some kind for him or her.

This morning, Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016, on the morning of the day before the new year, I went out to breakfast with Kali and Barb to a diner we often go to. For 20 years we have taken life’s journey together and have stopped to “catch up over breakfast” a couple of times per year! This morning I decided today would be a little bit different. This was the morning my New Year’s Resolution would begin!

I decided to leave a much bigger tip than normal…something I have never done! I decided that if I truly blessed someone with a little taste of “abundance”, the Universe will continue to bless me (and hopefully that person) with a year full of “abundance”.

After laughing and eating for about an hour we had caught up on each other’s lives and the lives of the people we have known throughout the year. All was good. I asked them if they had seen my New Year’s Resolution (They have lived through my “street walking days”, my Winery Tour, my Church Tour, and so many others!). Of course they saw my blog! SO…I told them what my first NEW THING would be and the fact that they were on my journey with me!!

Immediately after our bill of $34.00 had been placed on our table, I pulled out a note wrapped around a $100 tip for our waitress! The note read “MAY YOU BE BLESSED ABUNDANTLY THIS YEAR! HAPPY 2017! Kali and Barb LOVED the idea!

The big debate came as to whether we leave it on the table and walk away or hand it to our waitress on the way out the door. We decided to hand it to her and we left. I wish we could have stayed to see her face, but that wasn’t the goal. The goal was to have faith in the abundance we gave her as a blessing as she rings in the New Year of 2017!

What a fun way to start off 2017!