Category Archives: Volunteering

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Dear Volunteer!

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Dear Volunteer!

Coming up in October is the Other Half Marathon here in Moab Utah.  Not as large as the ½ Marathon held in the spring, but still a busy fun adventure for the like-minded.  

https://youtu.be/oAnEH6Dvb4g

Thelma and Louise 2015

I love those emails that come out and say “Hey Volunteer – you want to help out this year”?  That’s enough said, it's short, sweet and to the point.   If you are like me and the 100’s of other local volunteers - you can’t say the magic word “NO”.   Here is what is really behind that one line question:

“Hey Volunteer – you want to help out this year”? 

Dear Volunteer!

 Up at 5:00 am and loaded with nothing but a steamy mug of coffee, an over-sized sweat shirt to keep the morning chill away –please drive yourself the required 13 miles down the curvy river road to your location.  Soon other volunteers will be showing up to help you load  the 1000’s of bags from the runners onto the waiting trucks that will haul them back to town to the next  volunteer crew. 

Volunteers wipe the sleep from your eyes  and get busy helping to park buses
and utility vehicles, or help at the start of the race.  Many  of you volunteers will be busy the day before setting up the start and finish lines;  handing out packets;  running unending errands - only to turn around and  be back out into the elementsAAEAAQAAAAAAAAXIAAAAJDkzYjYzOWU0LWM2N2YtNGNjNi04ZjQyLTkwZDE2ZWQwMmU1MA-300x123 Dear Volunteer!
the next morning.  Come rain or shine the day is before us! 

Volunteers will line the 13 mile course as marshal’s, trackers, water station aids,  and even a Tiako drummer group will be available to  help encourage the runners to continue the pace.  The view along the route is spectacular, and there is  personal satisfaction in knowing  that  there is a river bank location  with your name on it after you're done.  Now, get yourself a breakfast burrito and coffee at the Volunteer booth - let's get going! 

Crossing that finish line is golden!

AAEAAQAAAAAAAASaAAAAJDk1MDEyZmEzLTM1NDAtNDI2ZS1iODZmLWU3YzExODRmNGViYg-300x227 Dear Volunteer! The finish line is filled with more volunteers happily  greeting runners and  quickly  assessing  run times.  Runners are herded to  aid stations which will help  the tired but exuberant finishers.  Need a massage? The volunteers got you covered.  How about  food to replenish those muscles and nurture hammered bones?  Volunteers again. 

The brew crew has a bubbly beer  in the beer garden to help wash down the sweat and tears and ease those victory woes.  Don't Judge! AAEAAQAAAAAAAAXQAAAAJGY1ODFjMTJjLWI3MDMtNDhkYS05MWQxLWU2YjJjNTljZTc0Ng-300x225 Dear Volunteer!

Don’t forget all those folks who are walking the  river roadway cleaning up debris, and those who help to tear down after the race.  Those on  emergency call and the organizers on the radios, to those  carrying flags - they know the value of what they do.  It's all for the  REWARD.  The real reward is  self-satisfaction in knowing you’ve done  something to contribute to a  community event!  An event that brings prominence to our little piece of property  on this small planet called earth.  Or better yet, that speck of red dirt called Moab Utah!  

Volunteers from every walk of life show up to help.  You have teachers, doctors, lawyers, honor society members, brewery folk, youth garden kids, and construction workers, democrats and republicans,  and more.  Why?  Because they can. Because they care.  It isn’t one person, but many. Each deserving and caring enough to “show up”.  Have fun!

 AAEAAQAAAAAAAAThAAAAJGNiNzJjYTQ3LTZjZTUtNDZkMC04MzUyLWE2ZjM3OWY2Y2Y3Ng-300x225 Dear Volunteer!

 Just show up!  Say YES!  .. 

Best part... the volunteer party!  


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What’s on Your Bucket List? Any Chalk, a Plant, Crazy Glue, Birdseed?

AAEAAQAAAAAAAAQAAAAAJDM2Y2I2MWYyLWY3MWQtNGY0NC1hMzY4LWNhMjk1YmQyY2YwYQ What's on Your Bucket List? Any Chalk, a Plant, Crazy Glue, Birdseed?

What's on Your Bucket List? Any Chalk, a Plant, Crazy Glue, Birdseed?

Watching the grandchild learning a new word and then trying to put meaning to that word was an experience that left me wondering.  How fast our minds rationalize thoughts, and place information into neat little containers of knowledge, is a miracle in and of itself.  Have you ever thought about a thought? Explain a thought to a 6 year old. I dare you.  I double dare you. 

Have you ever thought about a thought?   

As we grow older being told something isn’t right, or learning we will have to do something differently isn’t generally what we want to hear. Change sucks.  I know many of us have gotten so busy that we just tend to do things all by ourselves.  Maybe someone else could of made a process easier for us, maybe not.  But we won’t know because letting go of a situation or work event isn’t something we are used to doing.  Let’s face it, our day planners are full.     We go a little zombie like,  and then we don’t know how to climb out of that mode.  

Learning is a different process for everyone.  Some are just faster than a whip with everything they lay their hands on. Others like to take things one bite at a time.   You can’t force the unwilling to learn, and nobody wants to listen to the know it all's.    People need to be motivated to learn or change.  As I’ve aged, motivation I have
cc What's on Your Bucket List? Any Chalk, a Plant, Crazy Glue, Birdseed? discovered is in short supply.   Those who once motivated me, now sound like a broken parrot “right”, “you know what  I mean”, “right”, “right”.  Ugh! 

Age  changes  how you learn.  I find that I’m just not interested any longer in those ideas I thought were so cool in my younger days.  Those items that used to be on my  ole bucket list have  already been checked marked off.  Sure there are things I want to do – but not the things I wanted to do ten or twenty years ago.  My bucket list looks more like a shopping list for a leisurely day at the pool -rather than a vacation to some far away resort.  Although I would go to the resort if someone buy me a ticket.  Please buy me a ticket.  But then I regress.

I sat down with my grandchild to try to discover if I could see into the mind of a 6 year old and come up with an answer to my lack of motivation, and my empty bucket list.  What I forgot to notice until after she had gone home with her family was how much she motivated me just to want to stay in one place.  I like peace and quiet.  I was motivated to get back to that - the stillness of the day.  In our search for items to put on our bucket lists, don’t leave off peace and quiet.  Those really are motivating factors to help you gain a better perspective on life. 

Bucket List Items that might not be on your list, but could be:

  1. Fall in love again
  2. Grow a plant and not kill it
  3. Burn your day planner (you can burn your bra too – but by that age who cares)
  4. Seek peace and rest
  5. Read a book, heck read a couple book, a whole library of books
  6. Save some time to draw stick figures on the concrete with a 6 year old
  7. Say you are sorry to someone who would never see it coming
  8. Be there when you say you will be – and watch someone’s eyes light up
  9. Dream again
  10. Sleep with no clothes or more clothes on – what ever you want
  11. Don’t be afraid to ask questions – worst someone can say is no
  12. And number twelve, volunteer. Give of yourself and your bucket will always be full

I am off to draw stick figures on the side walk.  We have to draw a full scale ranch with horses and cows.  Could take up to four or five concrete sections.

My bucket list is full


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Common Sense – Work and the Professional Volunteer

AAEAAQAAAAAAAANiAAAAJDI4MzA4MTM2LTFmODctNDBhMi04MDVkLTlmMmU3ZTM2ZDdhOA Common Sense - Work and the Professional Volunteer

Common Sense - Work and the Professional Volunteer

I often volunteer for a host of recreational events, but I also volunteer my time with a number of non-profit / charitable organizations. It’s a lot of time management on my part, but I think it helps me maintain a balance in my life. I can’t be all work and no play. Yet I can’t be all causes and no work either. Finding that life balance and using common sense to keep things positive I feel is a gift.

Finding that Life Balance

In the business world and in education, common sense sometimes gets uprooted by causes. Taking up a cause can in reality become a distraction toward your own professional goals if not monitored. Sometimes you have to tell your friends no, and do what is right for the organization and yourself. I am not suggesting that you stop volunteering, but rather you look at your own goals, and find that life balance.

Listed below are some good quotes to lift up those who volunteer:

  • {Research has shown that people who volunteer often live longer. Allen Klein}
  • {"Be the change you want to see in the world"...and, if you can't be that change, then either get out of the way of the person who wants to be that change or support the individual with your financial resources.--Mahatma Gandhi}
  • {Anything can be accomplished as long as you don't care who gets the credit--Unknown}
  • {When people forget themselves, they usually do things others remember.--James Coco}
  • {When giving comes directly from the heart, it can never disappoint or embarrass.--Bel Kaufman }

Listing your goals and identifying causes that match your organization is called strategic planning. You have to think in terms of “how can this cause benefit my organization and give me a personal outlet to express myself"? It is true that your personal time is your own time, but if it involves doing things that disrupts the company image – you might want to switch causes, or at least tame it down a bit.

What you do and say in your private life can directly influence your work life. Some organizations have deep set and personal relationships with non-profits and charities. Others use their resources to sponsor special events and/or educational endeavors. Know your organization, and don’t step on toes – it could be your bosses toes. Use your common sense and align yourself with organizations that have like minded causes.

How would you feel if your boss asked you to go to an event in a PR capacity, and you disliked the event? Would you tell your boss

-"no - I refuse to do it"?

-Asked to be excused and give the event over to a subordinate?

Sometimes you have to do things you don't want to do for a paycheck. Know the organization you work for; know them well before you apply. Personally I haven't ran into this type of conflict, but I know others who have. It is heart breaking for them.

You don’t have to become volunteer or citizen of the year to prove you have a caring nature. Those people are professional volunteers, and work probably isn't too high on their agenda. If you are too involved in causes, your work can suffer; you need to know when to say no. You can’t expect others to carry the load for you in the office or in the field either. Again, use common sense and you can balance it.

I would love to be a professional volunteer and get paid for it. That would be the ultimate dream job. But common sense tells me that I have to have a life balance between the many causes and work. I hope you to have the common sense to know what your limitations are.

That would be the ultimate dream job

Volunteering your time and energy is a great way to give back to the community. But if the volunteering is taking too much of your time, you might want to scale it back a little. Most organizers will understand. Don’t stop completely, just don’t burn yourself out. Allow others to help out too. Find your life balance and enjoy those causes, and keep your goals on track.