Monthly Archives: January 2012

Rest in Peace, My Precious Pup



CNC Women’s Potluck Fellowship is This Friday (1.20.2012)


Isn’t it great that the women of CNC will gather for their monthly potluck on

What side dish will you bring?

Friday? It is at Deborah’s home from 6-8pm.

Deborah will provide the meatloaf. We bring all the side dishes. I will bring baked potatoes … or maybe a dessert.

Meatloaf is wonderful comfort food. It is supposed to be yucky weather the end of the week. Therefore, comfort food is just the needed thing on Friday night.

Being with CNC ladies is also comforting. And a lot of FUN.  There will be some laughter, too.

If you need directions get a hold of me or Deborah. See you there!

7 Traits of a Successful Tea Hostess


People with the gift of hospitality genuinely enjoy being around others. Your smile, good humour, and other-oriented manner make you a people magnet.

CNC’s women will soon attend their annual tea. Many details are organized in order for this event to be successful. One detail is recruiting hostesses for the tables.

We still need a couple of hostesses. The Tea is Saturday, February 11, 2-4 pm at CNC.

Wondering if you have what it takes to be part of this elite group of women? Read on to see if you, too, have the 7 traits that help make hostesses shine.

1. You have an awareness of visitors. It’s like you have a radar as to who is new to a group. There is no new person who is not a friend in the making for you. You tend to make a beeline in their direction because . . .

2. You have a desire to make people feel welcome. New social situations make most of us uncomfortable. You don’t want guests to feel this way, so you intervene. You are able to do this because . . .

3. You are attentive to the needs of visitors. You have the ability to give special treatment or say the right things so others feel more comfortable. You do what it takes to meet their need at that moment. Because you are good at networking them into social circles . . . 

4. You are good at helping people become part of a group. Everyone has a need to belong. Your hospitality skills help guests and the “group” to relate well to each other from the beginning. Because you are not pushy . . . 

5. You respect the boundaries of your guests. You are good at not being aggressive in your words and actions toward visitors. You gently lead and let them decide for themselves what actions they will then take. People respond well to you because . . .

6. You enjoy people. Your body language, words, and actions all point to your interest in others. You are sincere and have fun in your relationships. You make the encounter about the other person and not your own needs/wants. People are drawn to you because . . .

7.  You smile at people. This shows that you have a friendly, welcoming attitude. In addition, you are able to emphatically relate to others making them feel understood and liked.

I am thinking of several CNC women who embody these traits and haven’t signed up yet. Come on, ladies, you know who you are!

Contact Michelle White (Tea Coordinator) today to become a hostess. She has a letter of suggestions. If this is your first year as a hostess, don’t worry, Michelle will be there to guide you. In fact, since she, too, has the gift of hospitality, you will be taken care of well.

Your Turn . . . 

  • Have you signed up as a tea hostess yet? If not, what is holding you back?
  • Have you ever done this at CNC? If yes, what encouragement do you have for ladies who are thinking about being one?
  • Would you share a time a hostess helped you feel more comfortable at one of our teas?

4 “Secrets” to Energize & Motivate


 This Book, Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and improve Results, shares four secrets to revitalizing any workplace. These secrets also translate well into improving one’s personal life.  

I call the following concepts secrets because while they are simple concepts, they seem to have escaped the notice and implementation of many people.

These 4 secrets may seem obvious. But implementing them forms the foundation for a successful, productive, and more enjoyable work- and personal-life.

  • Choose your attitude.
  • Play.
  • Make their day.
  • Be present.

I read this book while in college and recently came across my notes. Below are my thoughts on these four secrets.

1. “Choose your attitude” is the first secret. Simply put this means people have a choice about how they will think and act in the workplace. In the Forward Ken Blanchard states, “75% of our time is spent doing work-related activities” (9-10). So why not choose to have a good attitude about it?

According to the authors, the benefit of choosing to love our work extends beyond being happy at work. It also means “we can catch our limit of happiness, meaning, and fulfilment every day, [every where]”(9). The practices of the other secrets are also needed to fully experience a transformed work and life experience, but it all starts with our attitude.

Choosing to have a good attitude is what made a difference for me at one of my former jobs. After reading this book, I decided to consciously enjoy each aspect of my job. I realized that while the job itself wasn’t important, each person I came into contact with was important.

I decided to stop playing victim to my insecurities and doubts about my job performance. I took to heart verses from Joshua about being strong, courageous, and not dismayed. This attitude choosing worked!

One night  my boss, Pete, told me he had been watching me with the customers and said he was very pleased with my interaction. Pete went on to say, “I think you should do an in-service training on this!” I was the last hired, had never been in that type of job before, and had not attended any training seminars. The difference, I believe, had been my attitude.

2. The second secret has to do with “Play.” Blanchard says that working in a playful atmosphere “will prevent [employee] burnout and keep the job excitement alive” (10). Lonnie, a person in the book, adds several other benefits: low turnover, camaraderie amongst work mates, personal and team pride (64).

Several characters in the book noted that any job could be boring. Besides choosing a positive attitude it is necessary to do the work in an interesting manner. Lonnie tells Mary Jane, “We discovered we could be serious about business and still have fun with the way we conducted business…having a good time, but doing it in a respectful manner” (63).

I am not naturally a “playful” type of person. So, I have difficulty with putting this into practice or even seeing what I could do to be “respectfully” playful. The one thing I tried to do was not be so serious and uptight about my job performance.

3. The third secret centers onMake their day.” Lonnie says this involves making great memories for the customer (66). The Make Their Day Team took this one step further by giving specific examples of customer service to make customers feel important. These examples include the following . . .

  • Have the customer be part of the feedback process.
  • Set up the environment to make it easier for the customer.
  • Have the workers exhibit efficiency and a caring attitude.
  • Find ways to play along side the customer.
  • Make great service a priority of the company.

I personally tried to extend great service to each customer. I looked them in the eye and really listened after I asked if there is anything else I may help them with. When I was on the floor, I “played” by helping customers find the necessary product to make the end result something “they” were pleased with. Evidently my approach was working since my boss commented on it.

4. The final secret is “Be present.” In Mary Jane’s journal these ideas were presented as no daydreaming, or doing unnecessary things, and being on the look out for interacting with the customers (70-71). It is easy in any job to get distracted, so having this reminder to stay focused on the present was a needed one.

Sometimes I had trouble (and still do) with looking for ways to interact with customers. If I was involved with a project. I tend to be task-oriented and like to finish the task before moving on to another task or interacting with people. Evidently when I am in task-mode, I get a look that says, “I am busy. Don’t talk to me.” This is not a good look when you are supposed to be also doing customer service.

I’d like to reread this book. I want to see if/how I could implement these 4 secrets in my current place of employment. I especially would like ideas on how to “Make their day” and on “Play.” Any suggestions?

Your Turn . . . 

  1. Have you read this book? If yes, what were your take-away points?
  2. What secrets were easy?
  3. Which ones were harder to implement?
  4. Do you have another example for how one (or more) of the secrets can be carried out?
Related Posts . . . 

7 Women Needed to Fill Top Notch Spots


“Quite simply, one of the most exciting women’s event every year.”

“What top notch spot and exciting women’s event is this,” you ask? The annual Women’s Tea on Saturday, February 11, 2-4 pm in Rudat Hall. Every year 10 women carefully craft beautiful tablescapes and pamper their guests with beauty and attention.

Interested in decorating hospitality and hosting a table full of women? Then contact Michelle White today and tell her you’d like to pamper a table of CNC’s finest women.

Your duties?

  • Provide the table needs: tea pot, cups & saucers, plates, silverware, glasses, tea, cream, sugar, tablecloth, centerpiece, etc. You may borrow CNC cups & saucers, plates, silverware and tablecloth. Set up a time with Michelle to borrow them.
  • Pamper your table of 6: Pour tea, pass goodies, create community.
  • Set up and clean up your table. Set up is on Friday, Feb 10 at 2 different times: 10:00am to Noon or 5:30pm to 8:30pm. Clean up will be from 4:00-4:30 after the Tea.

Contact Michelle now to join with CNC’s top notch hostesses: 635-5992  or leave a comment here and I will pass it on.

Con La Lengua Afuera: a Story and a T/F Quiz


“Gray hairs are signs of wisdom if you hold your tongue,

speak and they are but hairs, as in the young,” Rabindranath Tagore.

TRISH (black shirt, white capris) AND I (blue shirt, grey capris) ARE HELPING THIS MAORI CLAN WELCOME THE "DIGNITARIES" IN OUR MIDST. Or maybe we were being fierce to scare away the enemy. We are doing this at the end of their haka (Maori dance) by bulging our eyes and sticking out our tongues.

Middle school girls liked to tease each other when I was young. We all wore the same uniform (Ponce, Puerto Rico private school) so our clothing wasn’t fodder for teasing.

However if you wore glasses or braces, if you were nerdy, or if you were uncoordinated – you were a target for teasing. I was all of the above.

The biggest tease of all though – which even had its own song – was if you liked a boy or if a boy liked you. The offending girl would be circled by the singing-teasing girls.

The song was in Spanish and I learned it 30 years ago. Yes, I sometimes joined in. I resembled the young in the quote above. I don’t remember the words. It was something like our “K-I-S-S-I-N-G First Comes Love, Then Comes Marriage,” etc song.

The only fragment I remember is “con la lengua afuera” (with the tongue hanging out).

The tongue has many uses depending on the species. It appears that in all species it is a type of sense organ and can indicate health. There are many quotes and Scripture which points to how the tongue is used (with words) indicates the character or emotional health of a person.

It is obvious that when I used my middle school tongue as an instrument of teasing, I was not exhibiting moral behaviour. I cared more about fitting in than about doing/saying the right thing, the wise thing.

Today my head is filled with gray hair. I like to think it is associated with wisdom. Today I care more about doing/saying the right thing. So while I may use my middle-aged tongue in a silly way like at this haka, I am committed to using it to bring encouragement, truth, and humour to all people I encounter.

NOTE: Periodically I will post photos from my New Zealand Trip, March, 2011. This is photo 1.

Your Turn . . . Are the hairs on your head “gray” with wisdom or just hair?

So in honour of the tongue, here is a True/False Quiz.

1. T/F.  To determine if someone is having a stroke, ask the person to “stick” out their tongue. If the tongue is “crooked,” if it goes to one side or the other, that is an indication of a stroke.

2. T/F.  A regular part of the dental exam includes the dentist checking your tongue for oral cancer. S/he is looking for lumps, masses, changes in color or texture, and swelling.

3. T/F.  Lizards stick out their tongue in order to better see their prey.

4. T/F.  A crocodile cannot stick out its tongue.

5. T/F.  The Maori people (New Zealanders) stick out their tongues during a haka dance of which there are many types.

Answers are after the jump. Click on “More.”

Read the rest of this entry

Time to Sign Up as a Hostess for Annual Tea … Saturday, February 11, 2 pm at CNC


Tea is good for the body, but teatime is good for the soul” (Margaret Brownley).

If hostessing, hospitality, and decorating thrill you, sign up today to hostess your own table.

  • You provide the table decor and tea elements.
  • The ladies at your table provide the appetizers for your table.

Michelle White is this year’s Tea coordinator.

Ladies, be good to your soul. Contact Michelle today saying you’ll hostess a table (635-5992).