ISSUE 4: THE Y2B KIND ISSUE
ASTOUNDING ACCOMPLISHMENTS When Little Feet Take Big Steps Alyssa Antoci, Author of The Purple Marble
ACTION OF A
KIND HEART with Anthony Dominguez
HOW DOES SHE DO IT?
SHANNON SEIFERT CEO of the
CHEERS TO THE WEEKEND
Hit the road and explore all you can do in and around Santa Maria Valley. You’ll find it’s the perfect home base, where you can eat, drink and do more for less. Starting Memorial Day weekend, explore six wineries and tasting rooms on the Santa Maria Valley Wine Trolley. This is weekend wine tasting, #SantaMariaStyle Kicking off May 26, the Santa Maria Valley wine trolley will run its loop through the Foxen Canyon Wine trail every Saturday and Sunday. The route takes approximately 75 minutes and allows passengers to step on and off at their convenience. The Central Coast’s most historic wine lives in the Santa Maria Valley. Our AVA has the oldest appellation in the area and nearly two centuries of experience in growing grapes. We’re especially known for our Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Syrah, and the casual environments where they are served. National Geographic recently named Santa Maria as one of the 25 happiest cities in the US and we have a sneaking suspicion why; because we take life with a grain of salt, and then toss some on our steak. We believe our finest pinot is best paired with blue jeans. Above all, we treat our visitors like family. And while we’re proud that the caliber of our wine prompted the Travel Channel to name Santa Maria Valley one of the top 10 cities for wine snobs, we aren’t the type that sips with our pinkies in the air.
The info you want for the weekend you need Wine trolley season: Saturdays and Sundays, May 26 - October 14, 2018 (including holiday weekends) When: 11 a.m. - 5 p.m., step on, step off at your convenience Tickets: $10 in advance / $18 at the trolley Where: Trolley route begins and ends at the Radisson Hotel
TROLLEY STOPS Radisson Hotel
*Trolley route and schedule are subject to change
Old Orcutt Clark Ave. / Pacific St.
Old Orcutt Clark Ave. / Broadway St.
Cottonwood Canyon Winery
Costa de Oro Winery
Check route information, ticket information, and current 2018 pricing at: SantaMariaValley.com/WineTrolley
CONTACT US Central Coast Kind Magazine 805.862.9595 PO Box 6555, Santa Maria, CA 93456 www.centralcoastkind.com
A WORD FROM
THE FOUNDER A great big hello to CCK readers,
OUR STAFF Kim Iribarren, Co-Publisher, Founder Ralph Iribarren, Co-Publisher Macy Haffey, Creative Director Dennis Young, Executive Producer Jeff Lind, Director of Sales Vicky Duncan, Managing Editor
CONTRIBUTORS WRITERS: Jody Belsher Sally Currie Judythe Guarnera Dottie Lyons Richard Palmquist Lili Sinclaire Ruth Starr Dennis Eamon Young PHOTOGRAPHERS: Justin Gardner | justinwandering.com Publisher's Son Dennis Eamon Young See articles for additional photo credits
ISSUE 3: Zing Go the Strings of Her Heart (pages 10-12) STORY BY Dennis Eamon Young PHOTOGRAPHY BY Larry Hedrick
Persevere! That’s the word that comes straight to my mind. Life will try to get you down if you let it, but when you know that you are doing the right thing, you must be steadfast and continue to move forward even though everything including the weather will try to stop you! Persevere is to persist in anything undertaken; maintain a purpose despite difficulty, obstacles, or discouragement; continue steadfastly. We have wonderful stories in this issue as well as incredible ways for you to get involved and/or donate time, money or energy to help your local community. Dr. Wayne Miller is on page 14 & 15 with an awesome local kind act of love. He is helping our Veterans recover and is having wonderful results. Shannon Seifert is on the front cover and her story, page 36, is remarkable! Then on page 43, we have a story on a young lady who started at the age of eight to make a difference in the world we live in. We also have a local celebrity, Mr. George Smith, Owner of Mobile Works, who was featured on the COVER of a nationally recognized publication, Mobile Electronics. See page 30 for more info. We have so many wonderful, real life, local, kind stories and local writers to be thankful for - it doesn’t seem like enough to just say it, I want to shout it out to all! I'd like to welcome and thank our new investors of this issue, The Manse on Marsh, a Life-Enriching Independent & Assisted Living Facility is San Luis Obispo. I'd also like to welcome The Santa Maria Chamber of Commerce
and Central Coast Vein and Vascular of Arroyo Grande. A continual thanks to Dr. Wayne Miller, The Minerva Club, Pacific Smile Design, Fischer's Jewelry, Costa De Oro Winery, YMCA of Santa Maria, Mobile Works and all of you that contribute, support and most importantly READ the magazine. A very special thanks to our dedicated designer, Mrs. Macy Haffey, who works diligently to create the style and creativity that this community deserves. Much love to you, Macy! I hope you enjoy reading about your friends and neighbors, who extend a part of themselves and are making things happen to keep the community strong, caring and committed to the place they call home! My mom, who lives in Texas, read these stories and now wants to move to Central Coast to be a part of the movement that takes place here. I’m not sure if it is recognized enough, but the Central Coast of California has the most unique hearts, energy, ideas and inspiration I’ve ever experienced. It is something to feel proud of and to spread like a contagious unstoppable feeling…to ALL who cross county lines! Reach out and join us in BRANDING your community with this KIND MOVEMENT! Stay KIND in all you do,
Kim Iribarren Founder
11 KIND PEOPLE ARE MY KIN DA PEOPLE 12 Pirate Who Steals Sorrow 15 Action of a Kind Heart 18 Transitions-Mental Health Association
21 YO U ' LL N E V E R REGRET BEING KIND 22 CJ Silas- Woman in a Man's World 26 Hail to the Chief
COVER STORY | Shannon Seifert
51 KINDNESS LIVES FOREVER 52 The Joyful Neural Pathway 54 Trigger Finger 57 Recipes by Dottie Lyons 58 Linda Osty & the Heroes Who Guide Her 61 Wordmonger: Kindness
35 KINDNESS IS POWER
62 Out & About 64 Calendar/News
SPREAD THE LOVE CHALLENGE
36 Community Leader Shannon Seifert
09 Challenge #1
32 Challenge #4
16 Challenge #2
50 Challenge #5
28 Challenge #3
66 Challenge #6
43 Astounding Accomplishments,
When Little Feet Take Big Steps Alyssa Antoci, Author of The Purple Marble
46 The Place centralcoastkind.com
FOR YOUTH DEVELOPMENT® FOR HEALTHY LIVING FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
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photographer, JUSTIN GARDNER
Spread the Love
CHALLENGE Wake up, smile at yourself in the mirror, and within 30 minutes, call one person, and try to find a way to make that one person feel good about themselves!
Challenge yourself each & every day! CCK challenges you to find different ways to challenge yourself throughout the next few months, and then send in your experience so we can review and share! ď Ž #CCKSPREADTHELOVE
CHALLENGE #1: Stay Focused!
Be the example! Speak, act, and/or respond kindly... someoneâ€™s always watching, listening or learning from you!!! centralcoastkind.com
The Manse was the best decision of my life! The Staff goes above and beyond!”
Cottage Resident & Dog Lover
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kind people are my kinda people
Justin Gardner | justinwandering.com
12 Pirate Who Steals Sorrow 15 Action of a Kind Heart 18 Transitions-Mental Health Association
PIRATE WHO STEALS
SORROW Yarling at the time, would bring to our Central Coast a pirate of a different ilk.
STORY & PHOTOS BY
Richard Palmquist with SALLY CURRIE
Gone were his money, driver license and car keys. In stocking feet, he ran after his attackers and, thanks to a passing police cruiser, they were arrested. End of story? Not for Steve, although since then he has avoided Long Beach. It was not an experience that he could forget. It festered for years.
he “pirate” at Avila Pier in his swashbuckler’s outfit and fogg y conch horn was delighting children of all ages. What motivated this bold actor, I wondered. So, I asked him and learned he is Steve Yarling, and that he does, in fact, live at sea. Yarling sat with me, eye patch gone and wearing normal clothing, to share his life experiences, including an account of being victimized by two modern day pirate women who waylaid him in his youth. The pride of a man can be threatened if he is confronted by violent women, especially if they are modern-day pirates. This was too much. Yarling had been walking peacefully to his car from the sands of Long Beach. This crime, though inconvenient for
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
Visiting a Friday night Farmers’ Market celebration at Avila Beach you might hear a mournful a wailing “fog horn.” That is Pirate Yarling deep breathing into his conch shell outf itted with a trombone-like mouthpiece. He calls it his “Shell Phone.” Steve did not give up in the face of adversity. He is a “freebooter.” Selfdirected and strong willed, he respects the values he was taught by loving parents in Muncie, Indiana, where he lettered in cross countr y and track (running a 4:46min. mile.) He felt, however, that there were life skills he needed to learn to broaden his experience so he left the security of home and came west. Yes, there were down times in the past when a refrigerator box was his billet, but he is now at home on a 32-foot ketch at Morro Bay. He has cycled through contrasting careers. He laughingly notes that a scan through the businesses listed in the Yellow Pages might trace his work history.
He worked for a time as a boilermaker and jests that the “boilermaker” drink and “yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum” are important markers in his life experience. He paid the inevitable price for excess and has been dry for twenty years, no longer needing alcohol as a crutch. His “dry” sense of humor brings pleasant memories to coastal visitors and locals alike. Once he worked as a deckhand for Captain David Kubiak until the commercial fishing regulations were amended, allowing the skipper to work his boat alone. This left Steve without a job. Ironically, Kubiak fell overboard to his death in 2009. Motivated by what he perceives as this unnecessary tragedy, Yarling began to view life with a deeper sense of caring and to feel more responsible for the role he should play. This moved him to become a pirate – a pirate who reverses the meaning of the term. A “normal” pirate makes his living by taking from others. Steve says, “I can’t be who I am without helping others.” Sometimes, on visits to his parents in Henderson, NV, he spends time on the Las Vegas strip in his pirate gear. Once there, he is a popular figure on the strip. Costumes of every sort seek tips, often with demand rather than request. Steve dons his costume and enjoys the time, especially on New Years’ Eve, making no demand, sharing joy. He radiates fun wherever he might be.
He appears to live by a code similar to that of Charley Brown’s view that “Life isn’t meant to be easy. It’s meant to be lived.” Steve quips, “The smile on my face doesn’t mean my life is perfect. It means I appreciate what I have and what I have been blessed with. I choose to be happy.” This philosopy is evident in Steve’s interactions with the people he meets in daily life. He is a man of means. His financial needs are met little by little, month to month, but the needs of life? Those needs, his “means,” are the wealth of creating the fun of life for himself and others. One Friday in Avila Beach, where you can find Steve by following the sound of his conch horn, a young mom from the Valley asked if she could take his picture with her fouryear-old. She seemed hesitant about the need to pay him. He assured her with a grin that he did not require a tip. Even though there have been times when tips haven’t covered his gas to come from Morro Bay, he appears not to care. He meets his financial obligations by doing odd jobs and washing windows for merchants in Morro Bay. For over a dozen years he has been a buccaneer, a “sea raider” in uniform, when he appears public weekends roaming the Morro Bay Embarcadero. He raids discouragement. He steals boredom. The Pirate raises the sword of his character against the life of the “ordinary.” He allows those catching a glimpse
of him to wonder, “What would I put on? What makeup would I wear? How would I behave, if only I had the outlandish courage of this extraordinary man?” His satisfaction comes from his wealth of character which enables him to create fun and laughter for those whose lives he touches. “As with any job,” he confesses, “there are tough times, but being a pirate helps me in a subtle way to make people smile and to motivate young people. I am thankful every day that I can do this. Life is what you speak, think and hear,” he concludes. Steve Yarling speaks well, thinks clearly and feels the needs of people who carry heavy burdens. The life-threatening knife-blade trauma seed planted by two pirate thugs in Long Beach took root in this gifted man and blossomed to create a fun figure, taking from memories of his own grief and giving reasons to smile. He is an example of what it means to be kind.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE? Steve Yarling can be reached at 805-441-1629
ng Services Non-Profit 501 C-3 Providi urological
ve Ne The mission of Alternati lp provide lifehe to is ) NS Solutions (A urology treatment for changing functional ne y not afford the care the those patients who can . SD PT h wit s vet wounded need, particularly our
donate dollars that make good sense!
our local vets w/ neurological disorders suffer w/o treatment What are some examples of neurological disorders? Examples include seizures, memory issues and other dementias, cerebrovascular disease including stroke, migraine and other headaches, tremors, anxiety, anger issues and other disorders of the nervous system due to trauma.
every donation helps! Mail checks to: 2441 Professional Parkway | Santa Maria, CA 93455 Pay with credit card at: www.alternativeneurologicalsolutions.com * Cash donations accepted in person at office *
2441 Professional Parkway | Santa Maria â€˘ (805) 934-5703 â€˘ email@example.com
ACTION OF A KIND HEART
N E U RO LOG I C AL D I SO R D E R TR E ATM E NT FO R LOC AL VE TS F R O M D R . WAY N E M I L L E R :
am not a veteran, however I appreciate the sacrifices made by our veterans to provide freedom for our country, and safety for my community, my family and myself. Thanks to Professor Carrick and the Carrick Institute for their training and knowledge in functional neurology, I have the opportunity to give back and say “thank you” to these veterans by creating neuroplasticity and giving them back some quality of life. Unfortunately, this new form of treatment is not covered by insurance or the VA, therefore I started a non-profit in order to raise funds to help all our service veterans that are suffering. DR.WAYNE MILLER, ANTHONY DOMINGUEZ, & DR. ROBERT MILLER
FROM ANTHONY DOMINGUEZ:
’ve been post injury since 2007 and have been treated from Germany to U.S. and the results? No change. So, what does alternative management of pain, seizures, headache, anger, balance and memory loss look like? Dr. Wayne Miller and Dr. Robert Miller. My treatment for these challenges have been so amazing I wanted to share this. No seizures, no headaches, no balance issues, clearer thought process and reasonable amount of
response restraint. What does my treatment with the “Docs” look like to me? HOPE is the best I can describe. Hope for a life that thrives, not just exists. Hope for a love of family, friends and the next day. Every vet that suffers from these types of injuries, I recommend to the “Docs”, and I thank those who humbly donated for my treatment. Thank you. And, those who feel compelled to help other veterans who gave up their quality of life for our great U.S.A., thank you, too. What does a brain injury/PTSD from combat look like?
On the outside, nothing. No loss of limb or life. But the reality, TBI/ PTSD is exactly that. Loss. Loss of quality of life. TBI/PTSD looks like different things to different vets from Afghanistan to Iraq. All I can say is what it’s cost me personally. How is that loss quantified? Seizures; severe TBI induced headaches, migraine level; anxiety; memory loss; anger, anger at the world, family, friends, wife, and children; inability to see the world clearly without the lens of PTSD or TBI. Private treatment costs too much for an average vet to even think about affording. What about the VA system, you say? One word: Pills. Overmedicated to stabilize, not improve, life.
PHOTOS SUBMITTED BY ANTHONY DOMINGUEZ
CHALLENGE #2: Smile! Remember to gently smile at every single person you cross paths with.
A gentle smile goes a long wayâ€” it warms hearts, adds happiness and makes people feel better.
Justin Gardner justinwandering.com
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Transitions-Mental Health Association
ometimes, life is difficult. Philo, a philosopher born in 20 BC said, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” Possibly, one of the hardest battles a person fights is mental illness. In America, 42 million adults have mental illness, and 80% of them are unemployed according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). To make matters worse, there’s an extremely negative stigma that overshadows those who have to deal with an illness. Stigma is defined as a mark of disgrace or reproach. According to NAMI, one in five of us is affected by a mental illness either individually or with a loved one. Mental illnesses are biologically based, and they affect people regardless of age, race or income. The symptoms are unrelated to a person’s character, upbringing or personal willpower, and they are treatable. Shunning those who need assistance helps no one. Being kind and finding a way to assist those in need is what will be helpful and create change. Transitions-Mental Health Association (TMHA) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating the stigma of mental illness and promoting recovery. The clients that are served by TMHA receive treatment from the County Behavioral Health Department for diagnosis of anxiety, chronic depression, and bi-polar to PTSD and schizophrenia.
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
These medical labels can be misunderstood by the lay person, and unfortunately can even encourage the stigma that goes with mental illness, which keeps people trapped in a vicious cycle of non-recovery. Transitions’ goal is to inspire hope, growth, recovery and wellness in the community. There are over 35 TMHA programs operating in San Luis Obispo and Northern Santa Barbara County from supplying work, housing, community and family support services to the SLO Hotline. The emphasis is to teach vital independent living skills and help build a framework for community re-entry through personal empowerment and hands on experience. The first steps of recovery are taken by connecting individuals, family members and professionals. With these partnerships in place, care is taken for each person as a whole, instead of just the illness. A job is one of the best steps to recovery for individuals who are trying to overcome the stigma of mental illness and the financial burden it brings. Having a place for people to learn emotional-social skills as well as on the job training is part of the recovery process. I like what the Canadian philosopher Marshall McLuhan said, “There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew.” Working together, helping
each other is what will create strong individuals, which builds strong communities. That’s exactly what Transitions is doing right here on the Central Coast.
in a supportive environment promoting personal and professional growth. Frank says, “It’s a business that supports individuals and helps them get back into the work force.”
TMHA’s had its beginning in 1979, when Barbara Fischer was the original Mental Health Association Director. The goal was to have a social rehabilitation model so clients could learn to communicate and socialize together. In 1982, equipment was purchased so clients could do landscape maintenance work as part of the rehabilitation process. Clients and their equipment were taken to different work sites. Due to the fact that someone had to drive them to their job, the idea came about that if there was a central location the client/ employees could work there. In 1984, JT Haas negotiated a lease on Orcutt Road from PG&E for land to be used as farm. TMHA Growing Grounds Farm had its beginning and sprouted up into a place where people can work on their social skills and learn about business too.
There are four parts of the program; The Growing Grounds Farm & Nursery SLO, Growing Grounds Farm in Santa Maria which grows and sells on-site fresh f lowers, veggie seedlings and produce. There is also the Growing Grounds Downtown retail store in SLO, and the Supported Employment Program in both SLO and SB counties. The farm in SLO currently has 35 clients, but the number changes throughout the year. The client/employees work up to 20 hours a week (a minimum of six hours) and receive minimum wage, while learning hands on entry-level skills.
Frank Ricceri, the Division Director of Vocational Programs for Transitions-Mental Health says, “Growing Grounds Farm and Nursery is a social enterprise and vocational training program.” Transitions provides therapeutic horticulture, vocational training, socialization opportunities, and employment
Growing Grounds Farm & Nursery - SLO provides native plants that are sold at the retail shop downtown. They also sell to local nurseries, environmental restoration organizations and The Land Conservancy of SLO. Currently, they are growing 1500 oak trees for the Army Corp of Engineers. A seed cleaning service is also part of the work the clients perform in SLO. Wayne Tyo is a nursery assistant and delivery driver. Wayne started out as a client and has been with Transitions for 13 years. Wayne says, “Some clients don’t talk to people for
(Transitions-Mental Health Association: continued)
months when they first start working. Their social anxiety can hold them back, but we’re here to support their recovery. We expose them to the work environment, both the pressures and challenges.” Transitional work is designed to support a client’s wellness, help them work with others and give vocational counselling. Wayne works one on one interacting with clients to help them deal with issues while on the job. Wayne also works with community volunteers. Between 50 and 100 Cal Poly students come many weekends to do upkeep on the grounds and buildings. Approximately 1,500 students help out yearly, equaling about 5000 hours. Brie Phillips went to the County Behavioral Health Clinic about three and a half years ago suffering from anxiety and depression. Initially, at TMHA she received help with her resume and job searching. When Brie heard about the Growing Grounds Farm & Nursery she wanted to work there. Brie says when she first arrived at the farm she was withdrawn and had trouble doing work on her own. A huge thing for Brie has been building social skills. The experience helped her come out of her shell, and she wants to help others do the same thing. Working at Transitions has been transforming for Brie. She feels valuable to the crew and to the company. Brie’s learned she has empathy for others and wants to help them with their mental health issues. Brie says, “Helping others makes me
feel good.” Before Brie got involved with Transitions she didn’t feel she had useful skills to offer in the world. Now she says, “After six months working here, I was feeling proud. And now, I feel pretty successful!” A big step forward for Brie is that she is now a job coach for the Supported Employment Program. She’s found a skill that creates connection and allows her to contribute to those around her. Wayne says, “Contributing to others gave Brie’s life a sense of purpose and meaning.” Christine Stor y manages the Growing Grounds retail store in downtown SLO, and she’s been with Transitions for 14 years. The store sells items that are grown at the two farms along with gift items that are made locally, and are also fair trade and organic. Christine facilitates a training program for clients that consist of at least ten shifts, and all staff are trained to be job coaches. Clients learn computer skills, to work a register and to interact with others. The idea is to train people in retail so they can transition to other jobs in the community. Christine says, “They learn both people and retail skills which builds confidence, and a sense of self-worth and well-being.” Josh Pankey went through the training and now works one day a week at the shop. Josh didn’t have a high school diploma or job skills when he started. Transitions worked with his schedule, and he was able
to go to Adult education and get his diploma in two months. He’s now attending Cuesta College. Josh says, “ Transitions has been rea l ly supportive. Before I worked here I had no experience. The training was great, and I feel awesome.” Elyn Saks, an Associate Dean at the University of California Los Angeles, who also lives with schizophrenia said, “No one would ever say that someone with a broken arm or leg is less than a whole person, but people say that or imply that all the time about people with mental illness.” It’s time to stop the stigma, and start opening up our hearts and minds to solutions. Thank you to TransitionsMental Health Association for doing just that.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE?
To learn how you can donate or volunteer at Transitions-Mental Health Association you can go to: www.t-mha.org. For more information on Stopping the Stigma: stopthestigma.org bringchange2mind.org (Glenn Close organization co-founder) The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
For a powerful one-minute video about mental illness with Glenn Close and her sister go to: Grand Central Terminal:60 https://www.youtube. com/watch?v=WUaXFlANojQ SLO Hotline 800-783-0607
you'll never regret being kind
Justin Gardner | justinwandering.com
22 CJ Silas- Woman in a Man's World! 26 Hail to the Chief
CJ SILAS –
WOMAN IN A MAN’S WORLD!
This tough cookie knows how to get good things done while living her dream on her own terms.
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
t all began with Jackie Robinson. Well actually it started when she was six years old. Her Gram was a big sports fan and took CJ (Carolyn Jo) to a Dodgers game in Los Angeles. Upon Gram’s explanation of Jackie Robinsons’ historic role in smashing the color barrier of baseball, the young CJ proclaimed that she would be like Jackie and become the f irst woman to break the gender barrier by playing for the Dodgers. She still considers Jackie a ‘Guardian Angel’, helping her stay focused throughout her trials and tribulations in a f ield almost 100% dominated by men. One of only three women with her name on a sports talk radio show and only ten overall on the national airwaves, she has had to fight every step of the way. She is starting her sixteenth season as a Cal Poly men’s baseball Stadium Announcer and in 2014 was the only female in the nation to announce an NCAA Regional weekend. Also, she now does the play-by-play Allan Hancock college football games on both radio and TV. These are a part of what men can take for granted, whereas women must fight tooth and nail every inch of the way, much of which we are only now coming to realize. To be a f ly on the wall of the studio to photograph her perform her show is a true experience in vivid reality. She really belongs on TV more than radio. This woman is pure passion in action, going from practically throttling the microphone to jumping back and throwing her hands in the air, while carefully modulating her voice to the spoken material. She is quite a show to behold and she is real and down to earth. Her local interns rotate in and out during the show, bearing notes and engaging in indecipherable (to me) hand signals. There are three young college guys helping right now, but there are also four young women back in Syracuse being kept busy by the CJ dynamo. Peyton Zeigler, one of CJ’s winter interns at ESPN Radio in San Luis Obispo brought CJ to the attention of KIND to let others become aware of what an inspiration
CJ is, not only to women entering the field of sports journalism. Most important, CJ stands out as a role model for living a passionate, kind and loving life, always ready to reach out to others and deals with adversity through her optimism and strength. While dealing with being uprooted from one coast to another and one show to another, CJ took part in training with the American Red Cross, became a Development Coordinator and spent time in Louisiana helping with the recovery efforts from Hurricanes Rita and Katrina. This was a major life change for her and she returned to San Luis Obispo to do disaster training focusing on mobile feed and resources. She became a Public Affairs Rep for the Red Cross, creating a disaster pet plan. CJ’s activities other than her broadcasts are more varied than time would seem to allow. She is a docent for the Land Conservancy and is a long-time member of CAL SK8 Roller Derby, both as a player and a referee. The rough and tumble sport suits her competitive spirit, but also provides a sense of family, a sense of well-being that her Gram provided all those years ago, her mother and father’s divorce creating extreme difficulty for her. That sense of family pervades all the spaces of her life, from the radio station, to the Roller Queens, to those she works with through the Red Cross. Twenty seven years since her graduation from Syracuse University, after so many false starts, false promises and near misses and uphill battles, it all seems to have come home for CJ. True, she still needs to work outside of the show to pay the tab for air time, but the ESPN studio is like a nest where she can be her true self, full of the life she has designed and fought for. It is one where her ‘family’ of interns can also be themselves and be nurtured in a passionate environment of understanding all the pieces that must go into that segment on the air. Learning how to build a strong and real enough personality, that one can reach out over the air waves and touch another human being, so they understand that they can trust you – this is an art form. centralcoastkind.com
(CJ Silas- Woman in a Man's World: continued)
CJ just lost her walking partner, Independence Day, also known as Inde. She has, of late, been walking friends’ dogs, stopping at various places along the way for wideranging discussions of different sports teams and players, or dogs, or life. It is that juice of connection that allows her to thrive and feel validated. She enjoys life at fullthrottle, the same now as she has along the way. Interviewing other people who have made a place for themselves is a wonderful mechanism for learning. Her list runs long and deep. She has had those conversations with Michael Jordan, Pete Sampras, Venus Williams, Bob Costas, Charles Barkley, Danica Patrick and many others along the way, taking bits and pieces from one and all. Besides teaching her how to interact with high-level athletes on a one-to-one basis, she has found that on a basic level, they are not much different than the rest of us.
STORY & PHOTOS SUBMITTED BY Dennis
The goal she set her sights on was to affect and touch them differently than a typical male interviewer; to have them remember her for being different and more down to earth, which would allow them to open themselves more and perhaps reveal a deeper and more personal side than we usually see. It’s all in her book!
The book I mention here is one that CJ has been working on since 2008 and is called ONLY GIRL IN THE ROOM: A MEMOIR BY CJ SILAS. It recounts the girl and her dream, with all the twists and turns of an extraordinary career, including three national shows – ESPN, CBS/Sports Line and Fox Sports Radio. You can follow her from Syracuse, NY, with her Bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism in hand, through work with the Toronto Blue Jays, New York Yankees, ESPN in Bristol, CT. to eight months of reporting on the OJ Simpson trial in Los Angeles. You can hot-foot it up to Seattle with her, then get warmed up in Fort Lauderdale for CBS SportsLine, hop back to Seattle and meander down to San Luis Obispo. Along the way CJ settled down and sampled married life with a chef. They relocated from Seattle in 2002 to San Luis Obispo, but the bloom disappeared and they were separated in 2009, just as she finished work on her book. In December of 2011 ESPN set her up
on a one hour show and it began to air in March of 2012, changing times around and finally settled into her current live time slot of Wednesday night at 5 PM. CJ’s intern, Peyton, alerted me to an incident reported in the Tribune, when CJ saved a family from drowning in Shell Beach. In CJ’s own words, this is what transpired: “It was a crazy five minutes… anyone would have done the same thing. I saw three dogs in the water and a man trying to help a woman out, when she fell, then he fell. I got the dogs and her first, then went in for him. Waves pulled us all back in. I had to get her to safety first, before I could help him. He was almost unconscious by the time I got to him. It was crazy stressful. The waves dragged us back in. I could see he was done, out of energy and hardly alert. I called out for help and three guys came down to the beach and helped me get him to safety. The water was rising quickly and the woman was screaming for him. I’m glad it ended the way it did, but it was nuts.” To make the best use of her bounty of energy, she walks the dogs, runs, hikes, does Crossfit, plays and referees Roller Derby with the (aforementioned) CAL SK8, writes, dances and has even determined to walk the Camino de Santiago (Way of St. James) de Campostela, the famous French/Spanish pilgrimage, in 2019 as a 600 kilometer fundraiser for Best Friends Animal Society in Utah.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE? You can listen to CJ at the CJ Silas Show // 1280 AM – ESPN The Ticket
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Originally from Farmington, New Mexico, Deanna didn’t have a clear vision, nor much support, to guide her along. When a good friend from high school suggested they move to Tucson, Arizona, to attend Pima Community College, Deanna decided it was a good opportunity and quickly agreed to go. Through much encouragement from her friend, Deanna studied art, a pursuit she loved and was certain would lead to a career in that field. Meanwhile, her family took up residence in Mesa, Arizona, where her mother continues to reside today. Her siblings, a brother and two sisters, have established homes in different parts of the country.
eanna Cantrell, the SLO Police Chief, is a very caring and giving woman who serves the community in many ways. As a young girl Deanna didn’t like the police. They represented trouble. Her mother was being abused by her step-father which prompted numerous police visits to their home. In spite of them helping, Deanna didn’t like it when they showed up to her house. Her childhood was filled with painful times and an unpleasant introduction to domestic abuse and violence. Currently she gives comfort to
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Following her studies, Deanna pursued a variety of employment opportunities. Eventually she met a a young man who’s brother was a police officer. That chance encounter sparked her interest in police work. Even though the police had always made her feel uncomfortable, Deanna was impressed with all the things they were trained to do, including protection from domestic violence—something she personally understood. She discovered that there were a variety of avenues to choose from in police work. Helping children was most interesting to her. Coming full circle, Deanna made the decision that a career in the police department was now her life goal. She began in 1994 at the Police Academy in Mesa, AZ. While there she learned how to use guns, high speed driving, how to cool down very tense situations, and how to
effectively communicate with people. She was the first female top driver in the academy, which was quite an honor for someone just getting started. Deanna often credits her high school friend for caring enough about her to pull her out of a dead-end situation and getting her on the path to a full and fulfilling career. Her job as a police woman was not easy. Police Departments are careful who they hire, and the process can be difficult. As a police officer, Deanna was required to know state laws, city laws, federal laws and case laws. It is mandatory to understand a citizen’s rights. Upon graduation, Deanna started the next step of training by riding along with other officers for fourteen weeks. She actually rode with three different officers on different shifts during the morning, afternoon and night. She also had to go to different districts where there might be more crime. In the Academy it is a requirement to have sessions of physical fitness every day. Additionally, she had to pass health and psychological tests, as well as taking a polygraph test. Deanna explains that when facing someone with a gun or a break-in it can be very scary and can elicit a surge of adrenaline throughout her body. Deanna served in Mesa, AZ for twenty-two years working her way up to Assistant Chief, which was a huge accomplishment for her. Eventually she felt ready to move into the position of Police Chief. She began looking into departments that were hiring. Finding an opening in San Luis Obispo, CA, she and her partner, Kristi took a trip to see the area and apply for the job. Never having been to San Luis
Hail to the Chief of
Obispo, they were surprised to find such a warm and welcoming place to live. The rigorous application process included five oral board panels, interviews with the city manager and council members, in addition to lengthy psychological and medical exams to complete. There were also extensive background checks. Everything about her life was scrutinized. The investigators talked to the Mesa Police Department, family members, and others with whom she had contact. She passed every step along the way. On January 4, 2016, she began her job as Chief of Police in San Luis Obispo. As Chief she is responsible for everything the police department does, including creating culture, planning, f inance, supervision, growth, accountability, developing policy and procedures, carrying out goals for council and the cit y manager, staff ing work load, training, employee development, and community outreach. Finding a place to live, while their home was being sold in Arizona, proved challenging as they had three large rescue dogs. Together, she and Kristi raised three children who are now grown. Deanna enjoys communit y involvement. To further give to the community she serves on the Homeless Services Oversite Council, Hancock public safety board, Y MCA board, Cha i r of t he Cr imina l Just ice Administrators Association, Board of POSAFY and on a state board with California Police Chiefs Association called Changing the Narrative (about working to change the negative narrative surrounding law enforcement). Many of her speaking engagements include talking to Seniors about fraud, particularly computer fraud. She also does public speaking about domestic
S AN LUIS OBISPO
violence, safety, crime, community relations, and women’s issues. It’s her belief that every person has the right to defend themselves, and is happy that California has gun control measures with background checks for domestic violence, mental illness, and other felony convictions. Fortunately, her life is not fraught with only difficult situations. Deanna spends her off duty time taking the dogs to a dog beach, golfing the many courses around the area, hiking and often writing music and poetry. This is a poem she wrote for the police memorial in 2016 (March 2016) I knew the risks when I started this – this life – this career. When I used to have no fear – until I realized, not everyone sees us through the same eyes – the same lens – the same heart. I’ve gone as far as I can go, but I’m not telling any of you anything you don’t already know. There’s an end to every start, a night to every day. I just thought mine would turn out a different way. Today I took a different path one travelled by so many
more. Today I walked through a different door, and was met by my brothers and sisters that went before me. My badge no longer do I wear, I did my fair share of time on the street – in my zone – in my home away from home. I’m at peace with my choices, my decisions, no longer imprisoned but I’m free. I’ve worn this path down, it’s now wide and clear and I faced our enemies without fear. No more the calm during someone else’s fight, no more working til sunrise after night. Rejoice with me that I’m with our Creator and know in your hearts you will all see me later. To express herself, Deanna recently took up playing the guitar. A guitar leans against the wall in her office where she can pick it up once in a while and practice the chords she is learning. Smiling, she says that her acceptance in SLO has been fantastic—“everyone has been exceptionally kind: the people, the city officials and the police department. As a result, Deanna feels at home here in San Luis Obispo and appreciates all this community has to offer.
CHALLENGE #3: Share! Remember to share of yourself consciously thoughout the year.
Share your space, your time, your money, your lane, your ideas, your newspaper, your flowers in your garden, your recipes, your kind heart!
Justin Gardner justinwandering.com
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CHALLENGE #4: Compliment! Remember to compliment a job well done!
Compliment any job well done. Appreciate a good waitress. Take a minute and write a note or ask to speak to a manager when dealing with a phone rep and share what a difference they made in your experience. Put a star on the refrigerator for the childâ€™s efforts. Thank a postman or garbage man. Tell your husband or wife you love them more today than yesterday.
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36 Community Leader Shannon Seifert Speaks Out 43 Astounding Accomplishments, When Little Feet Take Big Steps 46 The Place
How Shannon Seifert, the dynamic CEO of the Santa Maria Valley YMCA, creates a special ‘3rd Space’ for members bodies and minds to escape worldly pressures.
peaking on the phone before our actual interview, I had gathered that Shannon was one of those irresistible forces who needs to be reckoned with, yet I was not quite ready for her in person. She is immediately engaging, greeting you with the radiance and warmth of a real-life personality. It would not surprise me to find her in the pages of People magazine, although this is no self-impressed leader. She loves to talk about her team and others around her rather than herself. As she ushered me into her comfortably cozy office, she took a quick lead. “I know we’re here for you to interview me,” she said as she perched on the end of her desk, “but if you don’t mind, I’d like to know about you.” During the next two hours, I learned first-hand how she leads by engaging another human being and letting them know that she cares about who they are, where they are in life and what their aspirations may be, as well as how they interact with others. This is as true for her interviewing someone for a position as it would be when speaking with someone who needs the services she and her team provide. It’s even true when she is the one being interviewed. I felt right at home and as if we were old friends catching up.
"We all need to be a part of something that makes a difference & continue working at it, until we have seen it through to completion.”
Shannon’s schooling comes from the most natural source of all, family and community. Growing up as a 5th generation Californian in a farming community, she imbibed the sense and reality of everyone in the community being invested in one another. She and her five siblings would help her mom cook for and distribute full meals to the harvesting crews bringing the crops in not only on their own ranch, but on all the neighboring ranches in the community as well. It was life itself to care about and help those around you to succeed, as they would help you as well. There was no room there for an “Us and Them” mentality. “That is why this community and this Y,” she punctuates this, pointing at her Y sign, “is a collaboration to me. Early on, it was ingrained in us all that to be successful you need to lend a hand. We all need to be a part of something that makes a difference and continue working at it, until we have seen it through to completion.”
Community Leader Shannon Seifert Speaks Out
Caring, Sharing and Believing, and Here's Y...
As a stay at home mom of thirty, Shannon found she needed resources and found the Y, enrolled in exercise classes, then soon moved on to teaching the classes. She stepped up to work at membership and got involved in other positions also. After fifteen years she was asked to take over leadership as CEO by the Y board. Crediting the Y’s succession plan for its vision, in mentoring and to always have a plan ready for the future, Shannon is aware that there will never be a dearth of opportunities for her to apply her mind and energies to, impacting the lives of those around her. She cites this as one of the Y’s main purposes in helping to strengthen the community. In her ten years as CEO she has brought new members to the board with kindness, care and keen insight, forging the eighteen members with a staff of 140, all dedicated to providing opportunities that will empower and enrich lives at all ages to share their time, talent and treasure. Their shared philosophical approach to connect and build relationships is the cornerstone to create a safe and fun community gathering place. This is what Shannon calls the ‘3rd Space’ - between work and home. A space to share responsibility, kindness, caring and a healthy lifestyle with likeminded others and develop an expanded sense of spirit, with no one left out or behind – that’s her mission. Her field of view is naturally inclusive. Totally encouraged by her husband, Tim Seifert, throughout their thirtyeight years of marriage, she has earned her AA degree from Allan Hancock College, as well as her bachelor’s degree in Business Management and Sociology from Brandman University. She is a Y
California State Alliance member, served on the small to mid-sized National Y cabinet from 2010 to 2013 and just completed a three-year term on the Y National Board this year. The second woman to serve as President for the Santa Maria Breakfast Rotary, she and Tim served as back-to-back Presidents. Tim also serves as a planning commissioner, so giving back to the community is not a one-sided part of their marriage. They have inculcated these philosophies in their two daughters (now adults), Katie and Rachel. As Shannon takes me on a walking tour of the facility, she points out some of the various changes she and her team have been able to bring about, such as the completion of a two-year full facility renovation. Every part of the Y, top to bottom has been replaced and renewed, including the sparkling pool and the expanded exercise room with neatly
placed equipment. I notice and comment on the fact that a lot of the custom local photo art seem not to be connected to the mission of the Y, being photos of agriculture, farming, workers at a variety of occupations, even photos of Pismo Beach, Oceano Dunes and Morro Bay. “All the photos we have are well thought out and are an important visual key to our mission and connectivity” she tells me with a big smile. “The photos are indicative of the community we strive to serve, as well as recognition of the local beauty we enjoy, living on the Central Coast. It is an agricultural community. Our founders were people of the earth who were tuned in to the expanding community and identified a need for a gathering place aimed at the needs of the community at large, rather than a small elite group. Their foresight created the building block of what and who we are today. My hope
(Community Leader Shannon Seifert Speaks Out: continued)
is to continue to expand their vision of kindness well into the future.” “Friends and neighbors f ind each other here taking advantage of the facilities, helping one another and getting involved. Perhaps they volunteer for one specif ic event, then before they realize it they are involved in an ongoing culture of caring and giving back, paying it forward and having a good time while doing so.” I could not help notice the warmth and sense of camaraderie she shares with everyone throughout the building.
STORY & PHOTOS BY
Dennis Eamon Young
Shannon herself is a very physical person who loves a challenge. Whether it’s skydiving in Santa Cruz, jumping off a cliff in New Zealand or joining a two-year CEO executive pilot training in Tennessee. She is the epitome of the work hard/ play hard philosophy. “If it doesn’t scare you just a little bit, then perhaps it’s not quite challenging enough.”
“No one person makes the Y what it is today,” she states emphatically. Demonstrating that point came vividly to her during her first month as CEO. Her sister died tragically in a motorcycle accident. The complete support of her board and staff made her realize that this Y was about ‘ALL’. A goal she has been working on for many years is creating working relationships with other non-profits. Partnerships with Boys and Girls Club, Dignity Health, Allan Hancock College and the Santa Barbara County of Education are but a few of the fruits of her Y’s community building. These relationships with fellow non-profits are the key to taking small initiatives and growing
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them community-wide. One of two key programs that resonate is the R iseUP program, a three-year prevention program (starting at nine years old!) to interrupt and re-direct early behavior toward alternate options with STEM, Y Readers Literacy program, swim skills, computer technology and Healthy Behavior Initiative (healthy eating). These students are hand chosen by the Santa Maria Bonita school district principals and will be tracked all the way from nine years old through Hancock ’s Promise program of first two years of college. The second key program need is the Internship program. The Y staff open applications to high school students who need to be employed but haven’t the skill set. We teach them everything, from the initial job interview to professional work behavior by hiring them and mentoring them throughout the summer, either on site at the Y or at other business participants in the program. This in turn gives these students valuable sk ills which they can contribute to their schools and employ throughout the community. “The Y is an amazing ‘3rd space’ to be a part of. The most important service we provide is a capacity to help those who need a hand up,” Shannon explains. “For that reason,
the Y and volunteers raise over $200,000 annually and give it all back to their community neighbors for youth development and healthy living as part of our mission of social responsibility.” In search of ways to improve the lives of her neighbors and the community at large, Shannon will leave no stone unturned, examining every opportunity that comes her way, or creating new ones. Like her farming family, and the neighbors she spent her formative years with, she is dedicated to sticking with harvesting all the positive ways she can, to improve people’s lives. Until that goal has been met, her job, as she defines it will not be over. Shannon, her Y board and staff invite all of you to suit up, show up and make a difference today. Why? Simply because you can. The most important tools this community advocate has at her disposal is a combination of IQ and EQ. Her innate intelligence, in tandem with her emotional and empathic skills, have been honed to a fine edge to form this most exceptional and dedicated lady. You can be assured of a warm and wonderful welcome.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE? Shannon Seifert CEO, Santa Maria Valley Y smvymca.org
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PREVENTS CHILD ABUSE + HEALS CHILDREN & FAMILIES CALM’s vision is a world where child abuse no longer exists. Until then, our prevention & treatment services help children in our community live healthier and happier lives.
WAYS THAT YOU CAN PARTICIPATE: — DONATE NOW — Visit www.calm4kids.org to make a monetary donation
— SHOP AT AmazonSmile — Support CALM and shop using Amazon Smile! Every sale benefits a child in need.
— VOLUNTEER — CALM volunteers make a vital difference in accomplishing our mission. Whether you serve as a child care giver, help out with special events, or provide administrative support, you are the heart and soul of CALM’s mission.
— ADOPT A FAMILY — Hundreds of families have requested help for the holidays. These families have sought support from CALM and are currently receiving counseling services. CALM will match families based on the interests of our generous donors and provide them sizes and a wish list. Last year many gave toys, books and other gifts, but we also were able to provide essentials like blankets and coats for families who are struggling to simply get by.
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MAY 31 â€“ JUNE 3 ELKS UNOCAL EVENT CENTER
FREE GENERAL ADMISSION FOR ALL ACTIVE MILITARY PERSONNEL The 75th Annual Elks Rodeo and Parade is proud to support our military and happy to once again announce "FREE" General Admission seating for all "ACTIVE" duty personnel and their immediate families (up to 4 free tickets) for any of this year's Rodeo performances. Tickets available while supplies last and will be given out each day of the Rodeo two hours before each performance at the Elks Unocal Event Center ticket booth ONLY. Current military ID required. Brought to you by our PRESENTING SPONSORS:
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Astounding Accomplishments, When Little Feet Take Big Steps Alyssa Antoci, Author of The Purple Marble (a children’s book that became a musical play), has been on the road of giving and kindness since she was eight years old.
s I sat down with Alyssa, now fifteen and her mother, Tiffany, I was struck with her quiet demeanor and a sense that here was a normal teenager, regardless of her accomplishments. There was an easy sense of self-possession about her, not a driven publicity seeker, as could have been the case. I felt that she would rather have been out riding her horse named Nicki, than to talk about herself. Alyssa tells me about the bullying she herself had experienced, to note that it sparked a desire in her to do something about it. The path she chose was to write The Purple Marble, when she was eight, with to aim to her focus on showing others what a terrible thing it is being bullied and how much better it is for everyone when we stop/change that type of behavior. She
had been at work on it when she met best-selling author, Sheri Fink, who had come to Alyssa’s school to talk about her first book, The Little Rose, also centered on bullying. Alyssa told Sheri about her book and asked if Sheri would read it. “From the moment I met Alyssa, I knew she was extra special.” Sheri says in the forward to The Purple Marble. “I was impressed that she had taken on such a challenging subject and followed her inspiration at such an early age. I know that Alyssa will continue to have a profound positive impact on the world through her books, her charity and her being.” Born under the artistic sign of Pieces, Alyssa had begun to write stories at a younger age, but The Purple Marble centralcoastkind.com
(Astounding Accomplishments, When Little Feet Take Big Steps: continued) ALYSSA & HER SISTER, OLIVIA | PHOTO BY Drew Stoecklein
imbued her with a sense of mission, to reach out to others about how this epidemic in our schools does not have to be. She crafted the various elements of bullying, found a way to stop this terrible affliction and even turned it around to a more positive outcome. Sheri Fink soon became her mentor. She would visit and help Alyssa along the way. Her mom, Tiffany, obtained a place for Alyssa in a writing camp and she began the challenging task to learn editing, with professional editor Lori Polydoros. This is a hard-working girl with a big heart and a love to share. Alyssa comes to the arena of philanthropy by way of a strong work and a giving family. Her grandmother struggled as a single mom. Her mother, Tiffany, trained in Theatre at UCLA, worked as an actress, now is a fulltime mother and worked with husband, Vito, building their home. She also works for both of their charities, Just A Little Cloth and Strength Behind Stars. This is a hardworking, loving family, supportive and always up for a challenge. She and sister, Olivia, like to cook up innovative ideas for ways to help others and they help each other remain kind and thoughtful.
STORY BY Dennis
Although she is currently at work on a new book, Alyssa is eye-ball deep in ways to keep The Purple Marble on the front burner, so it can continue to make a difference. She speaks with school groups who have read the book to explore the problems and solutions that are available. She likes to tell the groups how her mom invited the girl who chased her, called her names and even pushed her, to come over with her mom, so they could talk it out. That girl not only apologized but they also became friends. They have lost touch because they now go to different schools. She stresses that it may not be easy but is worth the time and effort in the long run, as she listens to the students share their own experiences.
“I wrote The Purple Marble to inspire kids not to bully,” Alyssa writes. “It would be a magnificent world if everybody was nice to each other. If kids read my book, it might help them if they’re getting bullied. This story could teach them to stand up for themselves. It might teach the bullies what is the right thing to do. We all make mistakes. It’s how we fix our mistakes that makes us better people.” She is not the type to be a one-track pony, when she sees a need and can find a way to help, she does. Alyssa and her best friend, Brooke, started a foundation called
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
Just A Little Cloth Inc. when they were eight, to provide other girls with nice dresses. Under that umbrella her sister, Olivia, has begun a charity called Just A Little Sole, gathering shoes for the Santa Ynez Mission as well as local schools for children at Christmas. Tiffany has provided a guiding hand along the way. Alyssa and Olivia are both on the board of an all-girl non-profit organization called Strength Behind Stars that provides Jeans for Teens and other Kids, with friends Lauren Flaherty, Cassidy Barba, Ella Christianson, Alana Hinkins, Lauren Meyers, Olivia Cortopassi, Lizzie Lopes, Demory Frausto, and Cloe Christianson. They have two board members who work in Newport Beach, Owen Logan and Coco Chinnici, who also work the Jeans for Teens project in that area. The board has also incorporated an anti-bullying, peer-topeer mentoring program into local schools, called Ambassadors for Kindness. When Tiffany Antoci sent Alyssa’s book to Leo Cortez, director of PCPA OUTREACH, the only training program of its kind offered by a community college (ALLAN HANCOCK), he was quite taken with the sophistication of the book. Alyssa chose to make the lead character a boy (based upon a male relative who’d been bullied) rather than herself. The group of characters were a perfect numerical fit for Leo’s small musical play. Her obvious awareness of the core issues and practical solutions, including a workbook section at the end, for classroom and home use, struck him as unique. All these points led Leo to believe this would be a valuable production. When I caught up with Leo Cortez by phone, he was very enthusiastic about the reception The Purple Marble had received in forty-two schools from Santa Ynez to Paso Robles, played for sixty-six performances in front of 22,000 students and parents between January 31 and March 17 of 2018. “Parents, teachers and students cried,” Leo said. “Parents were thanking me for bringing this timely piece of work to them and were awestruck that it had been conceived by an eight-year old. The characters are so well written that they are easy for everyone to connect with because they are drawn from real life. This is a story that goes well beyond Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties. It addresses a national problem and points the way for us to reverse a terrible trend.”
THE KIDS BOARD WITH STRENGTH BEHIND STARS | (L-R) LAUREN FLAHERTY, CASSIDY BARBA, ELLA CHRISTIANSON, VICE PRESIDENT ALANA HINKINS, HISTORIAN LAUREN MEYERS, FOUNDER AND PRESIDENT ALYSSA ANTOCI, SECRETARY OLIVIA CORTOPASSI, LIZZIE LOPES, DEMORY FRAUSTO, CO-FOUNDER OLIVIA ANTOCI, AND CLOE CHRISTIANSON PHOTO BY Tiffany
In the Dedication section of her book, Alyssa writes “Lastly, I would like to thank all of the parents, teachers and children that will be reading my book and taking to heart the message of ‘being kind to everyone.’ The world would be a better place…trust me!” After many pages of being mean and nasty throughout the book, we find that the bully himself has been bullied. The hero of the story treats him nice and the bully confides “Nobody has ever been so nice to me.” Alyssa is one of four kindness leaders for new approaches to be invited to a Kindness Evolution Conference in San Francisco this April, which is set to be broadcast to millions of people. She is excited to use her “bully-pulpit” to aid in her quest to have at least one copy of The Purple Marble in every school in America. Seeing the determination in her face when she leans across the
table to make a point, I can very well envision her on ELLEN, convincing young people (and many adults) across the country to not poison their lives and the lives of others. There are many other projects I could mention, but this will give the you a fair portrait of a young lady growing into a position of prominence in our community. She, her sister and friends are the wave of the future. It’s marvelous
to consider that these changes have been brought about by an eight-year old girl being bullied and what she has accomplished by taking the high road. Alyssa is a mover and a shaker, act’s and portrays the leadership and kindness we can all inspire to achieve. A fine example of a quality human being!
WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE? The Purple Marble by Alyssa Antoci alyssabooks.weebly.com www.strengthbehindstars.org FB @strengthbehindstars www.justalittlecloth.com You can follow Alyssa on Instagram @alyssabantoci centralcoastkind.com
t’s been said life is a journey, and we don’t really arrive anywhere. That certainly is true, yet there is a place we can return to anytime we want. Discovering this place has transformed me and my experience of life on planet Earth. Recently, I read an article about Richard Dreyfuss. He said he got sucked into drug abuse after he won his Oscar. It caused me to think about all the celebrities over the years who’ve suffered with drug or alcohol abuse. So many lives have been lost because of this - Judy Garland comes to mind. Dreyfuss said he enjoyed the ride to the top
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
but once he got there, he was disappointed. Luckily, he was able to rise back up out of his unhappiness. Like Dreyfuss, I’ve thought we arrive somewhere because of something we accomplish. My wise son recently said, “There is no there.” Yet, we humans sometimes fall into the false belief that life is about the destination; we want an ideal life, and we’re just waiting to stumble upon it. Brene Brown is a best-selling author, who has one of the most-watched Ted Talks ever. She says she’ll probably need a therapist, at different times, the rest of her life. It’s a bit hard for me to comprehend a sociologist, with a PhD and three books on the best sellers list would need to see a therapist. It proves that within the human experience struggles exists no matter who we are, what we have, or what we’ve accomplished. Chester Bennington, of Linkin Park, ended his life this past year. He talked about the space in his head being a bad neighborhood where he didn’t talk nice to himself. If he didn’t work on his stuff, his life got messy. Chester said, “People think if you’re successful, you get some card that says you’re going to be totally satisfied and happy the rest of your life. But it doesn’t happen like that.” Celebrities seem to have everything the rest of us think we want. But often it’s still not enough. Unfortunately, Chester’s life got so bad he couldn’t stand to live it any longer. Usually, when I struggle - it’s because I’m focused on arriving somewhere. If the struggle goes on for too long, my thoughts become bound in my tiny reality and my world grows small. The space in my head turns into a bad neighborhood just like Chester talked about. Things seem boring and monotonous. My life becomes frustrating, irritating, and unpleasant. I get discouraged. And though I’m on a planet that has over seven billion people on it, a feeling of loneliness can creep in. All this happens because I’ve forgotten inf inite possibilities exist within time and space, and they have nothing to do with accomplishing something or arriving somewhere; they have to do with living here and now. Fortunately, every day brings me the opportunity to return to some basic truths about life. Life does have suffering. Luckily, time and space were here long before I was, and will exists long after I am gone. The universe is very big, and I live on planet Earth with the rest of mankind as we travel through space at hundreds of thousands of miles per hour. The truth is that no matter what I think, believe, or feel - infinite, invisible possibilities f loat around light as air, and they’re just as real. So, basically, life has problems and it also has solutions. I want to return to this place of awareness as often as I can. The only way I’m able to do that is by being still and quiet in the present moment. A happy memory I have is kindergarten naptime. My teacher had a special wand she used to “wake” us up. Once Miss Brown tapped a student with the wand, they were free to get up and tap another child. I loved it when it was my turn to hold the wand. When naptime was over, it was time to get up from resting, and get back to the business of learning. centralcoastkind.com
(The Place: continued)
we respond to things. Frankl says this is where our power is; this is the place of awareness and clarity.
STORY & PHOTOS SUBMITTED BY
For over twenty years I’ve been running on the beach each morning. Some times when I jog I’m present and enjoy all the beauty around me. Other times it’s as though I’m dragging all my problems along with me. I worry about my kids, money, my future, the state of the world, and the planet’s future. My mind is really good at churning these things around, until I’ve gotten myself all worked up into an emotional sweat. My mind can become as foggy as the beach around me, with no awareness or clarity in sight.
Just as our bodies need rest, so do our minds; all the major spiritual beliefs have a practice of meditation or prayer. The point of the practice is to take a break from the constant self-absorbed chatter in our brains and return to a bigger place. This is what has been referred to as the space between our thoughts - where life exists in all its grandeur, despite our view of it. An amazing human being, who traveled on this planet, was Viktor Frankl. He was a psychologist who lived through Auschwitz and wrote the book Man’s Search for Meaning. Frankl said, “Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” We have the amazing ability every single moment of every day to choose how
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I like to hike, and the central coast is a great location to do that. Sometimes I go up to Big Sur, or I make my way to the top of Ontario Ridge. We now also have the Pismo Preserve. The view from these areas is incredible. I love seeing the vast ocean spread out before me and the land sprawling around for miles. When I’m up on these trails and I look at the world before me, life seems bigger - much bigger than my problems.
I let go, I let be I am whole, I am free Viktor Frankl was right, there is a space of power where we grow and are free. That quiet, still place, between stimulus and response is always there, it’s every where; we need only to return to it. I can stir up my worried thoughts anytime I want to; they’re usually there, just beneath the surface. But I know, too, I can just let them be. W hen I take time to quiet my mind it’s not to escape, it’s to rest. When I enter the place where possibilities exist, I f ind compassion, k indness and acceptance. I see things much more clearly. I accept life with all its rough edges, and I accept myself with all my f laws. I’m also able to accept others for who they are beyond what they say or do. This place is like my own grown-up kindergarten nap blanket; I rest there for a bit, and when I’m ready, I’m free to get back to the adventure of living.
Every day, numerous times a day, I become still and quiet. When needed, I return to the top of the mountain in my mind. Up there, on the bluff, overlooking the Pacific Ocean, I watch my concerns f loat on the wind down to the shore. The waves lap up my worries and take them out to sea. That’s when I return to the place, that’s bigger than me, that’s full of possibilities. I have a little poem I say sometimes:
WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE? Visit www.LiliASinclaire.com
CHALLENGE #5: Patience! Remember to be patient and considerate of others, and remember to stay KIND!
Practice patience with kids, elderly, waitresses, clerks, parents, husbands, co-workers, etc. Patience allows time to process, and itâ€™s received and appreciated much more than frustration, which leads to aggravation and constipation.
Justin Gardner justinwandering.com
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
kindness lives forever
Justin Gardner | justinwandering.com
52 The Joyful Neural Pathway 54 Trigger Finger 57 Recipes by Dottie Lyons 58 Linda Osty & the Heroes Who Guide Her 61 Wordmonger: Kindness 62 Out & About 64 Calendar/News
THE JOYFUL NEURAL PATHWAY
You’ll probably ask when you begin reading this, what it has to do with kindness. As you page through the magazine, you’ll read about the wonderful things that community members here on the Central Coast are doing to make life better for others. I’d like to take a step back in time—seven or eight years ago—when I came to realize that I needed to be joyful first, before I could support others. So please follow me on the pathway to that realization.
the JOY center
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ere I was minding my own business, when I was unceremoniously dumped into my 70s. The realization that I was on the downhill side of life opened my mind to an onslaught of important messages. Knowing that aging brings ongoing losses — friends, family, health, mobilit y and resources — can generate a feeling of despair. I wondered how I might reframe those losses to avoid that negative feeling. An article I read on joyfulness intrigued me. In a study of 100 people who described themselves as happy, some had major health problems, others had grave financial problems. The author said that some of us inherently see life more joyfully than others. Yet, she contended that we’re not limited to the degree of joyfulness assigned to us at birth. Each time we react joyfully, we imprint a neural pathway in our brains. We strengthen that neural pathway with each cheerful response. As the pathway strengthens, we will automatically respond more positively. When I told my husband that I wanted to increase joy in my life, he was all for it. He pointed out that of late I had been responding more negatively, than usual—perhaps those pesky aging concerns. He offered two examples: Example 1: Remember last night when you complained the casserole was cold, and I offered to reheat it? You said no and preferred to sit there and complain.” Example 2: Born during the depression, I took on a budgeting mentality at an early age. A few days ago, the proud owner of a new shredder, I missed some staples the first time I used it and stripped the gears. Even though Steve had already replaced the shredder, I hadn’t been able to let go of my unhappiness at wasting money. The message I heard from him was that I needed an immediate retrofit on my happiness pathway. Knowing my future is shorter than my past is a good motivator for change. Another motivator is the awareness that positive thinking and a happy outlook will increase my ability to communicate and connect with people and to work to improve my community here on the coast.
MAKING CONNECTIONS It’s easy to say that we don’t have time to make connections because of our hectic lives. My experience is that I can weave connecting moments into my day, connections that only take minutes. One day an older gentleman was struggling to get a large box into his trunk. A woman got out of her car, rushed over and offered to help. He snapped, “No, I’m fine.” She recoiled and hurried to her car. I approached her open window and said, “I really appreciate you offering to help that man. You must feel sad that he didn’t respond well.” Her face lit up and she breathed a “thank you.” That connection brightened the moment for both of us. My photographer friend and Kind writer, Dennis Young, operates in connecting mode all the time. To him, every encounter presents such an opportunity. I know that he is good at what he does because he genuinely appreciates people and makes them aware of that. I’m sure each time he does this, he puts another groove in his joyful neural pathway. Seeing how happy this makes him and how it positively impacts others, I realized that he was reinforcing my need to ramp up my connecting activities. Today I had lab work done. When I left, the technicians and I felt like old friends. A few minutes of “Dennis behavior” had created joy. PAT ON THE SHOULDER Sometimes, though, just as when the older man curtly rejected help, I feel sad when a friendly overture is not acknowledged. My brother, Joe, offered me a solution. He suggested I pat myself on the shoulder and say, “Good girl, Judy.” It works; my brain doesn’t care who does the patting; and I have added another groove in my positive, joyful neural pathway. Once that act of self-validation occurs, I can remind myself I have no way of knowing what might be happening in the other person’s life—why they responded negatively. Then I feel empathy rather than irritation — the groove gets deeper. No matter your age, you can choose to listen to the message that more joyful, positive thinking is yours for the effort. Strengthening that neural pathway is easier and cheaper than a gym membership to improve muscle tone, and it can provide immediate results.
TRIGGER FINGER DR. CAGGIANO
have met many kind people in my life. This Doc is right up there. I had what is known as a Trigger Finger. Trigger finger is a painful condition that causes the finger to catch or lock when bent. Trigger finger happens when tendons in the finger become inflamed. Tendons are tough bands of tissue that connect muscles and bones.
STORY & PHOTO SUBMITTED BY Ruth
As with open surgery, the surgeon injects your hand with a local anaesthetic. a needle will be inserted into the base of the affected finger and used to slice through the ligament to get to the tendon. The doctor will take out the stitches 1 to 2 weeks after surgery. It will probably take about 6 weeks for the finger to heal completely. Once healed, the finger may move easily without pain.
After discovering this problem, I called a hand doc I had seen in the past to find out he was retiring and a new Doc, Dr. Caggiano, was taking his place. He told me I would have to go under to have this surgery done. I wanted a local so I could get myself there and home. He said there was a shortage of the numbing medicine and if I wanted to wait, he would call when some was available and he could do the procedure at Sierra Vista. A few weeks later I got the call and he proceeded with the surgery. My fingers were all numb and I went home to relax for rest of day. Dr. Caggiano, called in the afternoon to see how I was doing. Told him it was still
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numb and the finger looked discolored. His nurse asked if I could come down to Arroyo Grande. Now it’s late afternoon and knew it would be dark and I don’t drive on the highway when it’s dark. He called another time and the finger was still numb and discolored. He said he would come to my house which he did. The last time a Doc came to my house was when I was a little kid and that was the practice then. He poked my finger with a needle - no response. He watched it for a while but no change. “c’mon”, he said, “we have to go to French Hospital as the medicine I need to inject is in short supply all over the country and luckily French Hosp has two vials of it”. He injected the med and ordered a large type heating pad that I held my hand under. If this didn’t work, the horrible possibility was that I could lose my finger. He stayed with me as minutes or maybe an hour or so passed. We both kept looking at this finger that looked bad. I said to him, he wasn’t getting paid much for all this time he was spending. His answer was that no way would he have left me in that condition and the money didn’t matter. I was so grateful for this kind man and his attitude. While waiting, we spoke of our lives and our rescue dogs. He went to a nearby computer and was typing into it when I took another look. “It’s PINK”, I yelled. He came running over to see. We both breathed a sigh of relief and could now go home.
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Stuffed Sweet Potato/Yam Makes 4-6 servings ING REDIENTS
• 2 to 4 large yams, scrubbed & pat dry • 1 tbsp olive oil • 3 cloves garlic • ½ medium onion, chopped • 1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed • ½ tsp ground cumin
Shrimp and Potato Chowder
• ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
Makes 6-12 servings
• Salt & pepper to taste
• 3 tbsp unsalted butter • 3 bunches of green onion or 1 large sweet onion • 2 lbs new potatoes, cut up (do not peel) • 3 cups vegetable broth • 3 cups heavy cream • 1 cup dry white wine • 1 tsp salt • ¼ tsp black pepper • 1 to 2 lbs large (12- 16) shrimp, raw, peeled, deveined • 2 to 3 tsp Tabasco sauce DIREC TIONS
• 1 bunch spinach, large stems removed, washed & chopped • 2 large limes, 1 cut into wedges for serving • ½ cup chopped cilantro • ½ cup chopped chives or green onions • 6 to 8 oz non-fat or whole milk plain Greek yogurt DIREC TIONS
Up to 3 days before serving, bake the yams until soft. Potatoes may be pierced with a knife all over and prepped in a microwave oven for 15 minutes to cut down the oven time of 60 minutes at 400 degrees. Heat the oil, chopped onion and garlic in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the beans, cumin, cayenne, and ¼ cup water. Increase the heat to medium high and cook, tossing until the beans are heated through and onion and garlic are soft.
Add the spinach. Season to taste and toss until beginning to wilt, just a few minutes.
Saute onion and potatoes for 3 to 5 minutes.
Split the potatoes that have been re-heated if done ahead of time. Season to taste.
Add next 5 ingredients.
Squeeze a lime wedge over each potato serving, and top with the bean mixture. Serve with a dollop of yogurt. Sprinkle with the chives/onions and cilantro.
Reduce heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 30 to 45 minutes. Mixture may be refrigerated for later.
About 20 minutes before serving, add shrimp and Tabasco.
Add extra lime wedge to each plate.
Bring to a simmer and gently cook for 20 to 30 minutes. Do not boil or over cook, as this will toughen shrimp. Enjoy!
In the projects in Indiana, her mom, whom she labeled ‘an awesome Mom,’ patched holes in the f loors of their home in the cold months with the help of scraps of tin cans. As local authorities condemned one project, Linda’s family would move to another. Because money was scarce, Linda always kept an eye open for jobs she could perform to enable her to help-out at home. And this woman loved to work and loved the work she did. Whether she was describing babysitting, or developing x-rays, or volunteering, her voice reverberated with energy and enthusiasm. She proudly stated she’d always been a good worker. The Catholic School she attended allowed her to work in the cafeteria to pay for her books. She also cleaned houses and even made gaskets for funeral caskets. Full Circle
LINDA OSTY & THE HEROES WHO GUIDE HER Paying Back with Interest
inda Osty came onto my radar when my husband and I attended a free showing of White Christmas at the Fair Oaks Theater in Arroyo Grande. It was sponsored by the local Rotary. The price of admission was cans of food for local people in need. The woman next to me waxed eloquent about how much Linda contributed to our community. The more she talked, the more determined I became to interview her for Kind Magazine.
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
When I greeted Linda on the day of the interview, I asked how she was feeling. “Never better.” (Readers: keep your eyes open. You’ ll see these words again.) It didn’t take long to discover that Linda Osty is a woman with a seriously positive outlook on life. That outlook and the ‘heroes’ who intervened in her life, transported her from humble beginnings in the projects of Evansville, Indiana to her life here in San Luis Obispo County.
Linda’s family moved from SLO to Indiana, then to Chicago, and thirtyfive years ago, moved back home, where the-loving generosity of the people in SLO reminds her of the storied city of Mayberry. No argument there—I could easily relate to the charming Mayberr y concept, but I couldn’t help wondering if she ever experienced any small-town gossip in our little corner of paradise. Her answer rolled off her tongue: “Well, maybe gossip would be a problem if I did more bad things.” Did I see a twinkle in her eye? As we sat over coffee and slices of Linda’s homemade chocolate cake, it became obvious that her happiest moments occur when she is with her husband, family, her little dogs, whom she calls ‘the girls,’ and/or when she’s involved with activities to make the community she loves a better place to live.
Out of all your jobs, which was your favorite? When Linda was in fourth grade, two sweet, grandmotherly women in Evansville, who owned the Porter Craft Shot, employed her for the sum of $2.50 a week. Apparently being slowed by age, they appreciated how quick ly she could accomplish tasks. They paid her extra by making her feel special. It was an exciting place to work because the shop was downtown, right in the middle of Farmer’s Market, with lots of activity and excitement. We were still talking jobs, when Linda asked me if I’d ever seen the movie, One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, I was unprepared when she stated she had worked at a state psychiatric hospital, which she said could easily have been the place where the movie had been filmed. It fascinated me that a young woman could muster the courage to work in such a place and still look back on it as a rewarding experience. But, hey, I was beginning to find out it was just such challenges that kept Linda going, and kept her happy and fulfilled. While working as a psychiatric attendant in the violent ward there, she met Dr. Bert Zanon, one of the many heroes who kept her moving forward. A supervisor had scolded the young, innocent Linda for eating a doughnut in the presence of a visitor. When Dr. Zanon discovered her in tears, he called her into his office, listened to her story, and then ordered up donuts and coffee. They shared this ritual every morning for sixteen years. A hero, indeed. Always curious about why people volunteer, I posed that question to Linda. “Ken and Mary Goldbloom asked me to join the Grover Beach Chamber of Commerce.” That led to her taking on the role of MC for the Annual Grover
Beach Christmas Parade for thirt y years and counting. We both agreed that inviting others to volunteer is the best way to get them involved in their communities. What’s the most important thing you’ve accomplished in your life? Again, no hesitation. It was when she fell in love with Ken, her husband, and determined her mission would be to “pay it back.” As we talked, she frequently identified people in her life, her heroes, whom she had never been able to thank. “If it weren’t for them, I might never have left the projects.” It’s always on her mind to look for ways to help others as part of paying back. Her greatest challenge has been to make the journey from victim to survivor. Her father, who had been in the service and then worked in the coal mines, faced many challenges, which he seemed unable to deal with. His daughters became his victims. Would you live your life any differently if you were offered a do-over? My question was met with an emphatic no! “Everything that’s happened to me brought me to this day and made me who I am.” Linda says she learned from each hardship and everything led to meeting Ken. (After 38 years, this is a couple who are still obviously much in love.) There’s no doubt in my mind that Linda can be proud of what she has accomplished. Do you have any time left over to have fun? Again, her eyes light up. Personally, I think Linda considers everything she does—work, volunteering—fun. She and Ken watch movies, travel, and visit second-hand shops. As she said the latter, my gaze circled the lovely furnishings in her living room until they stopped at the
ten-foot high bookcases at the far end of the room. I shook my head to remind myself I wasn’t on the set of Downton Abbey. You can also see how important family history is to her, by the strong presence of passed-down memorabilia. She and Ken have lots of nieces and nephews with whom they enjoy quality family time, but what gets her out of bed in the morning is Miss Hannah, one of her two Maltese puppies—at 5:00 am on the dot. Then they sit in her office, coffee within reach, as Linda prepares for the day. Okay, all this working and all this volunteering—does one volunteer job stand out? As she described this special event, she remarked that it was also the funniest. Linda’s sister, Nancy Mudd, needed to raise money for the Illinois Call for Help Crisis Line, for which she’d volunteered for 38 years. They lacked the funding to help the ever-increasing numbers of people who called the crisis line. Long distance, Linda helped her set up a Kiss the Pig Event. To win, one had to solicit sponsors who would pay to vote for the entrants. The winner had to kiss the pig. People in Illinois weren’t getting into the spirit. So, Linda, who smiled and said she is very competitive, entered, and secured her own votes. Challenged locals there got involved and the fundraiser was a success. Of course, Linda won. Her picture with a symbolic pig is included for your enjoyment. What would people be surprised to know about you? “That I worked 80 hours a week for 32 years.” Now that might surprise you, but it didn’t me. How else could someone manage to squeeze in two lifetimes of work, of loving, and of giving back?
(Linda Osty & the Heroes Who Guide Her: continued)
How did I talk such a busy person into being interviewed? I promised a humble Linda I’d help her promote Rotary, which she’s been a member of for twenty years. A Rotary brochure describes the organization as: “An international organization, a global network of one to two million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem solvers who see a world where people, unite and take action to create lasting change across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves. “Solving real problems takes real commitment and vision. For more than 110 years, Rotary’s people of action have used their passion, energy and intelligence to take action on sustainable projects. From literacy and peace to water and health, they are always working to better our world, and stay committed to the end.”
Linda, when did you begin volunteering? At the age of nine, she was already paying attention to the needs of others. An elderly neighbor didn’t get around well. When Linda ran errands, she began to stop by the woman’s house to see if she needed anything. Soon, Mrs. Jamison invited her in for cookies and their friendship blossomed. The motto, “Never Better,” which Linda cited at the beginning of our interview, appeared again in answer to the following questions:
STORY & PHOTOS SUBMITTED BY
• What do you want on your tombstone or memorial card?
• If they made a movie about you, what would it be titled? • (Linda added that the star of the movie, “Never Better,” would be a kid from the projects.) Do you ever think about retiring? Linda vows: “As long as I’m needed and able, as long as there is one more ticket to sell, one more golf tournament . . . W hat would you tell others who think life in our community could be improved, but know nothing about volunteering? From her memory bank, Linda pulled a quote from an admiral advising a navy Seal : “If you want to change the world, find someone to help you paddle.” Linda found that someone, her husband, Kenny, and with her faith, she puts others first and practices kindness.
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
We talked a lot about the jobs Linda’s worked at during her lifetime, but they were always interspersed with volunteer activities. She found Rotary the perfect way to direct her time and energies. Rotary, International The approximately 35,000 Rotary clubs worldwide: • Promote peace • Fight disease • Provide clean water, sanitation, and hygiene • Save mothers and children • Support education • Grow local economies • Conquer polio • Eradicate human trafficking Now that’s quite a list. Linda pointed out that she’s been lucky enough to have had the time and energy to work long hours and still volunteer. But, she knows her history isn’t typical and her level of volunteering not usually possible for others.
Linda’s Personal invite: “Do it and do it now.” What she does suggest is, if one wants to make even some small difference in our community, join the local Rotary. One can help raise money or can volunteer in a variety of events. Recently, Rotary has raised money to support the following local groups. • Teen Challenge • United Way • Clark Center Foundation • Boy Scouts of America
Local writer Chester Perryess explores the meanings of words on his blog page, Wordmonger on a weekly basis. I had to check it out when his word for the week was Kindness.
• Big Brothers and Big Sisters • Meals on Wheels • Food Bank • St. Patrick’s Outreach Program • Future Farmers of America • Shell Beach PTA • Arroyo Grande Hight School Robotics Club Linda can hook you up with Rotary and the many volunteer opportunities they offer. Contact Linda: firstname.lastname@example.org, call her at 805-489-3020, or visit her website: www.ostyinsur.com
Never better, Linda, never better.
When the milk of human kindness turns sour, it is a singularly unpalatable draught. - Agnes Repplier If you stop to be kind, you must swerve often from your path. - Mary Webb When kindness has left people, even for a few moments, we become afraid of them, as if their reason has left them. - Willa Cather Kindness is always fashionable. - Amelia E. Barr I prefer you to make mistakes in kindness than work miracles in unkindness. - Mother Teresa So many gods, so many creeds, So many paths that wind and wind, While just the art of being kind, Is all the sad world needs. - Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Follow Chester at: https://bit.ly/2JoFsgm, his Wordmonger site. centralcoastkind.com
As I backed out of Linda’s driveway, I experienced a peaceful sensation, probably because her last comment was that the most important things she’s done in her life were, in this order: falling in love, paying back, and sharing with family and community.
Here at Wordmonger, we’re celebrating the last three weeks of March by focusing on wise women’s words. March 15 we considered progress. March 22 we pondered lying. This week we’ll take a look at what some wise women had/have to say about kindness.
STORY & PHOTO SUBMITTED BY
Her resume of volunteer opportunities and awards is long. If you are looking for something to do to help in your community, just sit down with Linda.
Festival | PHOTOGRAPHY BY Bob Faulkner | PHOTOGRAPHY PROVIDED BY Santa Maria Valley
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5/3 – 6/3
CALENDAR/NEWS 75th Annual Santa Maria Elks Rodeo & Parade
Presented by Santa Maria Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, and Fiat
May 3 - June 3 | Elks Unocal Event Center For more info, visit: elksrec.com
5/13 – 7/8
Pacific Breeze Concert Series at Dinosaur Park Presented by Pismo Beach Conference & Visitors Bureau
Bring blankets, lawn chairs and the whole family to Dinosaur Caves Park in Shell Beach to enjoy live music, amazing food from local vendors and bounce houses and crafts for the kids! May 13 - July 8 | Each month on the 2nd Sunday 1PM to 4PM | Cost: Free! Dinosaur Caves Park | 2701 Price Street | Pismo Beach
6/1 – 6/3
7th Annual Tequila Festival Come kick off summer in Avila Beach with the 7th Annual Tequila Festival, featuring live music by Calexico and La Misa Negra. Event is strictly 21+ May 26 | Avila Beach Golf Resort (Concerts at the Cove) 6464 Ana Bay Drive | Avila Beach
Pismo Beach Classic Car Show
Presented by Pismo Beach Conference & Visitors Bureau
Come join us in Downtown Pismo Beach for one of the largest and finest classic car and street rod shows. The show features over 850 classic cars and street rods for attendees to see. This annual event is fun for the entire family! June 1 - June 3 | Downtown Pismo Beach | Pismo Beach
6/3 – 11/5
Art in the Park at Dinosaur Caves Over 100 local artists and craftsmen sell and display their work, including paintings, sculpture, pottery, glass, textiles, jewelry, wood and metal furniture, and more. The event also features live music, hands-on children’s activities. June 3 - November 5 | f irst Sunday of every month | 10AM - 4PM Dinosaur Caves Park | 2701 Price St | Pismo Beach For more info, contact Jan at 805-704-7083 w w w.artintheparkshellbeach.com.
7th Annual Macaroni and Cheese Festival
Presented by American General Media in San Luis Obispo
Unwind, relax while watching live music, and taking in the breathtaking scenery at the ocean! We will be serving plenty of Mac and Cheese! Plus, tastings of wine, beer and spirits and opportunities to buy full pours. This is a 21+ event. A portion of the proceeds from the 7th Annual Mac and Cheese Fest will be donated to Woods Humane Society! June 9 | 2PM - 6PM | Avila Beach Golf Resort | Avila Beach
The Y2B KIND Issue 2018
6/21 – 6/23
6/20 – 6/24
6/9 – 6/10
Old Santa Ynez Day
Organized by Old Santa Ynez Day Committee
June 9 | Santa Ynez | Cost: Free! 805-688-3299 | w w w.sy velks.com
The Hemp & Cannabis Fair Join us for a celebration of legal marijuana! 21+ only (18+ with MMP). June 9 - June 10 | 10AM - 5PM Madonna Inn and Expo Center w w w.THCfair.com | w w w.facebook.com/THCfair
66th Annual Lompoc Valley Flower Festival Featuring carnival rides and games, arts and craft exhibitors, food booths and commercial vendors, musical entertainment, a flower parade and fun for the whole family! Bring your lawn chair or blanket. Entertainment is free with festival admission. Paid parking is available on site for a nominal fee. No pets permitted in the park during the festival. June 20 - June 24 Ryon Park | 800 West Ocean Ave. | Lompoc
Roll Out the Barrels in San Luis Obispo Wine Country June 21 - June 23 | #rolloutthebarrels2018
Painting in the Vineyard at Kalyra
Organized by Gypsy Studios
Our painting in the vineyard classes provide a beautiful, stress-free environment that will both inspire your creative spirit and indulge the wine-lover in you. Don’t consider yourself an artist just yet? Don’t worry. Our trained artist will walk you through the entire painting process step-by-step. No previous painting experience necessary. Cost includes a full tasting of Kalyra Vineyard wine and all the supplies necessary to create your landscape masterpiece. June 24 | 11AM - 2PM | Cost: $65 Kalyra Winery | 343 N Refugio Rd | Santa Ynez
6/26 – 6/28
Moondoggies Surf Camp Students in this camp will learn how to surf with the experts from Moondoggies Beach Club. All instructors are CPR & First-Aid trained and the camp will emphasize water safety and surfing etiquette. Participants will learn everything from standing and maneuvering on a surfboard to spotting and avoiding riptides. Basic swimming skills are required. All equipment will be provided and each student will receive a gift bag and camp t-shirt. This camp requires a minimum of three students and a maximum of ten (1:5 ratio). June 26 - June 28 (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday) | 1PM - 3:30PM Meet at Moondoggies | 781 Dolliver Street Ages 8-17 | Co-Ed | Cost: $110.40 | City of Pismo Beach Recreation Division
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PHOTOGRAPHY BY Justin Gardner justinwandering.com
Portraiture • Commercial • Photojournalism • Fashion • Travel & Nature ennis has worked in all areas of photography, specializing in travel and adventure photo journalism as well as product and portraiture photography. Dennis’ unique ability to synthesize passion and technical expertise is evident in his varied portfolio of images. Dennis’ photos have appeared in major publications and newspapers, such as GQ, SLO City News, Cosmopolitan. His travel landscapes have appeared in several galleries, including SLO Museum of Art. Some local clients are SLO Symphony, Opera SLO, Children’s Resource Network, SLO Night Writers, Clever Ducks, Endeavour Institute and many other private clients and businesses.
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