The Hospitality Center Needs You!

Reverend Seth, the Executive Director, and Carl, the Program Manager at the center.

I’m here at the volunteer recognition dinner for the Hospitality Center, with Reverend Seth, the executive director and Carl, the program director. It was a nice turnout.

The center provides a lot of services for a lot of people. It’s the largest meal site in the area, serving the most needy, and provides a lot of social support for a large variety of people. A few things including a well balanced hot dinner at 11:30, clothing ministry, support groups, social outlet, and it’s more than helping people. It’s a safe family environment where we offer a hand up.

Donations can be mailed or dropped off at: The Hospitality Center, 614 Main Street, Racine, WI 53403. Currently, the hours of operation are M, T, Th & F from 7:30-1.

Soon, the hours will be expanding to be M-F from 7:30-2:30.

Every little bit of help to make this transition successful is appreciated! Donate, and come have a cup of coffee on us. All are welcome.

One of my regular posts at the center is to sign out lockers and be the guardian of the phone charging station. I get a lot of questions and I get to talk to a lot of people.

Earlier in the day, coming to you from the Hospitality Center, where all are welcome as you are, and serve various needs of the community. Some needs aside from milk, juice, lemonade mix and such, it would be nice to get a high chair or booster seat for some of our youngest guests to the center. Currently, we only have 1, and we have a few precious little cuties come in. Age-appropriate books, diapers, etc. Would also be appreciated. Pick up arrangements can be made. Thank you much in advance! Remember, the current hours are M, T, Th, & F from 7:30 AM to 1 PM, in hopes to expand out to all 5 days of the week for an hour and a half longer, each day.

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Announcing September and early October SC Johnson Community Interest Programs

SC Johnson is pleased to present the following events as part of the Community Interest Program series at the Golden Rondelle Theater. These programs are free and open to the public; reservations are encouraged (www.scjohnson.com/CIPreservations). A flyer detailing each program is attached – highlights are listed below for your convenience.

“The Other Boys of Summer” – a documentary – Experience the American civil rights movement through the lives of Negro League baseball players. Featuring exclusive, never-before-seen interviews with those who changed the course of American baseball by chasing their dreams and rising above hatred and inequality, the film shines the spotlight on a generation of unsung heroes.

Thursday, September 26 
6:30-8 p.m.; doors open at 6 p.m.

A Blast from Our Downtown’s Past – Racine natives relive the history of Racine’s downtown through a nostalgic look at ‘what we did for fun’ in the 1950s-1960s. The presentation features stories about the popular places to be in downtown Racine and highlights ‘scooping the loop,’ the Venetian, Y dances and more! Three program times are being offered.

Tuesday, October 1
6-8 p.m.; doors open at 5:30 p.m.

Thursday, October 3 
1-3 p.m. and 6-8 p.m.; doors open 30 minutes before each program begins

SC JOHNSON GOLDEN RONDELLE THEATER

1525 Howe Street, Racine, WI 53403

Parking is available in the lot just east of the Rondelle, at the intersection of 14th and Franklin Streets.

Reservations for these programs are encouraged. Follow these links to: make your program reservation, sign up for a campus tour or visit the SC Johnson corporate site.

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Music, Cultural Exchanges, & More!

After not playing for several years, I was finally able to play with the UW-Parkside Reunion band.  I’m hoping to be able to keep playing again, this fall in the Parkside Community Band, as well as get on the substitute list for the Racine Municipal Band.  It’s fun.

In participating in the reunion event for the Parkside 50th anniversary, I was able to get on a list to host a couple of members of a German municipal band, which is actually a community-based band.  They will be here September 14th – 16th.  I’m looking forward to it, and hope people will come to the event.

Not only will I be hosting them, I’ll be helping to pick them up, take them to their appointments here (which includes a concert), and back to where they need to go to depart to the next stop on their tour.  It will be a nice lesson in cultural exchanges for my son & husband, also.

I’m also a co-administrator for a support group, and the founder of this Sibling Abuse Survivors is on a Blogtalk Radio show.  Please have a listen, HERE – Thank you!

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Survivors Heal at Their Own Pace

Barb Caffrey's Blog

Folks, I read a Facebook post from a friend I’d like to know better earlier tonight. It was from two years ago, and I missed it at the time.

Without any privacy violations, my friend had gone through an ordeal while in middle school (once upon a time called junior high school; whichever works). A teacher had abused him for over a year, and he ended up with PTSD and other problems.

While I left as supportive of a message as I could now, albeit two years late, I wanted to say more about this.

Many of us have suffered wounds that take years, if not decades, to heal. And because we have had these problems, we think we’re less than we are; we think that maybe, just maybe, we deserved to be abused, or mistreated, or assaulted, or even molested.

I’m not saying we do this consciously. But we…

View original post 477 more words

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Rant of an Advocate

I am a busy person who is very active in the community. Aside from work, I volunteer at many worthy places which include the Hospitality Center, Racine Literacy Council, Sexual Assault Services, Eco-Justice Center, and of course, I have my own child advocacy organization called Youth Voice Initiative.

I do these things because for one, I believe in the fact that one person can make an impact, as well as the fact that without personal responsibility, your rights mean nothing. These topics and organizations are near and dear to me for various reasons, partially because of who I am as a person.

The Hospitality Center serves the needy, where people come to get hot meals, social contact, a safe place to meet & hang out, clothing, and so much more. You don’t need to be poor or homeless to be welcome here, there is literally a place for everyone who wants a place to go, something to do, and people to see. It is also my belief that hungry people should be fed, and just because you’re poor doesn’t mean you have to be socially disconnected.

The Racine Literacy Council offers tutoring to those who want to improve their skills in reading, writing and basic math to better their own situations, whether the person is an immigrant looking to be able to make their own appointments & discuss various things, or the person looking to simply get their HSED to get a better type job. I believe in education, and without it, things can be difficult.

Sexual Assault Services is something that is close to me, where I am able to be the person I needed, once upon a time… While we’ve come a long way, there is still a long way to go. Advocates sign up for 24 hour shifts, and we answer the phone in case a survivor calls just to talk, or if the hospital calls to have someone there when a recent survivor is in need of a medical exam and health related help.

The Eco-Justice Center is a fun place to be, and they offer so many good things. During the summer, they grow organic produce to sell at the markets. They also have on the premise alpacas, goats, chickens & other fowl, bees, and their resident cats. The chicken eggs and honey are also sold, as well as alpaca wool to make things such as hats and scarves with. The animals are treated very well, and they get to be what they are. I help out with animal chores, which is actually quite soothing on the mind. It also ties into my personal premise of people should eat food that is nutritious and delicious, along with being easy on the environment.

This brings me to my own cause, Youth Voice Initiative (YVI), a registered 501c4, which I created back in 2008. I had done this, because when it comes to actually DOING something, there are a lot of awareness & charitable campaigns about/for child abuse, but very little when it comes to pestering our legislators about protecting our children. When I was researching throughout 2007, I found several wildlife, animal, environmental, other human rights activist groups, yet, not much addressing children in this country who are being abused in their own homes, neglected, etc. We have seen many cases where the outcome is harsh. We see cases like Casey Anthony, Susan Smith, the Turpin family, among some. Their stories were sensationalized not just locally, but nationally also. Why weren’t there checks and balances to begin with? Who knows, yet as a society, we insist on jumping to knee-jerk reactions when dealing with this.

Mind you, I don’t mind YVI being a one woman show. I will show up in Madison. I will write my legislators. If I can’t make it all the way to D.C. I’ll request an appointment at a local office. I will talk on the phone if need be. I have gotten some headway doing these things. I will escort people to court to protect children. Write letters to the judge. Write the governor. Whatever it takes. I win some, lose some. Yet, even after these types of things, no one wants to be on board with helping with much, and whatever little bit of help I can get is appreciated, but, more can be done, but, as an individual, I can’t do it all. When people try to talk about these issues, I get asked to post about them, yet, even someone sharing a news article to the Facebook page is helpful. Donating ink or printer paper is helpful. Helping to hire someone who can formulate an education curriculum to educate various parts of the public would be great. My forte is talking to those in charge, in hopes that they will take some of what I present and do something about it. I will work their campaigns, give them a plug, sincerely thank them… So, often, it’s irritating when I hear so many people complain about how terrible it was for this or that incident to have happened… What, you don’t have 1 hour a month to come to a meeting? You don’t have an additional 2 hours to help do research? How about 2 minutes to find an article to share? How about 5 minutes to take part in a discussion forum? Yes, I’m daring people to actually DO something.

For those who are already doing so much in the community dedicating time for cause near & dear to you, I sincerely thank you and appreciate you. For those who seem to do more talking and no action, hit me up. I might find a place for you to put your money (or at least your time & efforts) where your mouth is.

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Reading, Volunteering & more

Growing up, I’ve always loved to read. It’s fun. Whatever you choose, you get to get caught up in the content that you are reading. I was born in Japan, my mother is American, father Japanese. My 1st spoken language was English, but could read in both. Of course, after moving to Wisconsin as a 3rd grader, spelling was a totally different issue in English… I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t read in the native language of where I lived. To me, that would be devastating.

In looking for professional employment, part of what helped me was to have solid professional type volunteer gigs, such as being a Tutor for the Racine Literacy Council (RLC). I enjoy the work, and feel I get more than I give. Please read this article featuring Steven Mussenden, the executive director of the RLC.

It helps knowing that I am helping an adult, whether they are returning to get their high school diploma, or if they are immigrants who want to learn the language to improve their position in life, whether it’s the better job, scheduling appointments or reading with their children. I hope you consider giving some time here.

In keeping with reading, future blogs will feature books and stories from my friends who are authors, such as:

Soldwolf – who is currently writing his story, Meeting the Parents, a Military Sci-Fi and all of the comedy, romance, action, and more that goes with it. With enough views following his chapters, he has the opportunity to be discovered by publishers to get his story turned into a book. It is still a work in progress, and I’m hoping to get a copy of this in it’s entirety someday!

Barb Caffrey – Elfy On the Loose – a fantasy/science fiction of it’s own universe, with a twist of comedy. Barb has 2 other books, also, which I will feature here on WordPress. As a starving artist, she is hoping to sell more of her books.

Leo Champion and his various action type novels, with heroes and more often, heroines. Many of these are available for Kindle, and I’m enjoying the variety. There is definitely something here for everyone.

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Chad & Lika in Concert (04/26/2019)

Okay, okay, so no, Chad and I weren’t actually “in” concert, we were at the Billy Joel concert up at Miller Park Stadium. We were both so excited to go, and of course, we get into some weirdness (because no, normal does not have a place in my life).

So, we start off around 4 to go pick up Chad’s paycheck to take to the bank before making it up to Milwaukee. We left plenty early but was about 7 minutes late to our dinner reservation, but, no worries. Thanks to the awesome lip color from Laura, my MK dealer, I’m looking spiffy!

We get seated because it’s not rush time yet, and then we found out that they didn’t have tonkatsu (a Japanese style pork cutlet), again… I guess I’ll just have to make it myself. Then we were unable to get settled up until about 7:20, when I was hoping to have left already, but figured hey, the concert is only 10 minutes away. We got this, right?

Maybe… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozDSk9XUkrc

So, we are getting ready to go, and, they have those with general parking passes or cash in a different direction… We are literally about a minute away from the Stadium, but, takes us an additional 20 minutes just to get parked. Wouldn’t you know, we are literally over the river from the concert hall, and had another half hour hike to get there!

That structure there is NOT the Stadium! So here we have to hike through a packed lot (because I took this pic as we left, not as we came in), through a car version of woods. Grandmother’s house, anyone? Dang…

So here we are, at the river… That lighted building is the Stadium, but we literally had to walk to the opposite side! Okay, maybe about a quarter of it, but it’s huge, and feels like they have 4 halves… Okay, okay, so we didn’t have to figure out how to catapult over the river, there was a walk way not far to the right… and it was more like a 7 minute walk from where we parked…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BC-n7HDGEeI

When we finally get in, and we have to go through security, because you know, I just might terrorize someone with my pink stretchy gloves… Then I get interrogated for my ticket, which Chad has on his phone, and they have him detained because you know, a young comedian is scary. Mike would have been much calmer in this situation, but the poor guy had to work, and still isn’t feeling up to par from the bug that is actually going around attacking people’s digestive systems…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFTLKWw542g

Oh, alright, so it wasn’t quite that bad, and we did get in w/o missing too much, maybe a song or two. Point is, we made it in, and we even found our seats relatively easy! We were seated by 8:10, so, not bad.

During the concert, I had technical difficulties with my phone, to where I wasn’t able to go live as much as I’d have like to, but did get to do so 4 times, so, yay! But because of this, I couldn’t take as many pictures as I’d have liked, so my apologies to Agron for this snafu! So here I am with all this adventure, and I wasn’t able to share as much of this with Barb nor Scott, who I usually chat with quite regularly, but then again, maybe it’s lucky for them that they didn’t have me as a part of their nightly routine with my endless encounters with one thing or another… I swear I could be featured in my own soap! And it was too cool to find out that one of my cousins, Breeyn was there, too, and said hi!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hCuMWrfXG4E

Anyway… while going live, of course you can tell when I’m sitting or standing since I was constantly bopping if I was standing and it shows in the video, the lights go dark just about 10:05… What? We literally JUST got here! Okay, so yeah, it was 2 hours… but hey, what’s a concert w/o any encores? We got THREE of them! After the concert officially got done at about 10:30, we tracked down a place to buy a T-shirt, because I figured it would be good to let some people out before we even get to the car, and with the fact that we had to walk half way around the stadium again, this time from the inside, we were toward the back of the line, so it took a while to get Chad his T. By this time, I’m doing a rain dance, so we had to walk back to find a restroom, which also has a long line, so I just figured okay, time for more people to clear out… And, guess who I run into? My old friend Dan Blake from college!

Speaking of college friends, I only found out a minute ago that another college friend, Gary Wortham was there, too! Small world or what? I definitely know some cool people for sure. After getting chastised by my 19 year old son about how he can’t take me anywhere, we finally get out to the car at about 11:20. Talk about long lines of cars, moving more like giant, lighted work ants at a snail’s pace, we finally got out of the park more like 11:45. We get onto the interstate, and I-94 east is closed… The GPS on the phone wants to rout us to Hwy 32, where the speed limit is 25, tons of zigs, zags, and missing signs and nope… Not doing it, I’m not the night owl I used to be.

Thankfully, Chad is now a night owl, and his usual funny and talkative self kept me awake and cracking up the whole ride home, and took 27th Street down to Hwy 100 and caught the interstate back home, where we zipped home and walked in around 12:35, about 2 hours AFTER the concert ended…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gxEPV4kolz0

Point is, we had fun, and who doesn’t love seeing the Piano Man? AND, we made it home in one piece, safe and sound! Adventure end, for now… Until next time (and yes, there WILL be a next time)!

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