OK, I can’t yet post videos at this site, but soon, dear readers, soon! The redesign of TucsonCitizen.com will be near the end of next month, and video-posting training is part of the deal. But this video is too precious to wait until then. “Jessica’s Daily Affirmation” is a video that will make the most crotchety among us smile (although her baby sister/brother didn’t seem to thrilled). And it is a great, great example of the power of what we in the education biz call “positive framing.” I’ve got this bookmarked to watch each day because I need the reminder that, yes, I do like everything and I can do anything better than anyone!
Posts Tagged ‘happiness’
In June 2007, I wrote a column about a young Tucsonan who had come back from traveling the states to open a dance studio in Tucson’s South Park neighborhood. Joseph Rodgers had attended a Tucson Town Hall that summer where there was plenty of hand-wringing about what was wrong with Tucson but not a whole lot of people stepping up with concrete answers to the question, “What can YOU do to fix Tucson?”
Rodgers, a professional ballet dancer who had come home to Tucson to care for his elderly father, stood up, in a big way, and said he’d offer a year of free ballet lessons to any kid from the impoverished South Side. The 40-something African-American had no studio at the time and no business plan. What he had was gumption and a dream to help kids the way he had been helped by dance.
And now, receiving the Christmas letter from Dancing in the Streets Arizona, I just want to squeeze his cheeks and say, “You go!” Rodgers (who, with his wife Soleste, is still a volunteer with DISAZ) now has a dance studio, a board of directors, 141 students, and, I’m betting, lots of happiness. Next weekend, after your Christmas happenings, you can go see his troupe of youngsters perform at Pima Community College in the Nutcracker.
This is the thing that got me most in the letter: One of the current students came to DITSAZ to complete court-ordered community service. After helping last Christmas with the Nutcracker performance, he decided he wanted to dance, and began taking lessons. He follows the rules (discipline is a big part of dance, and a big part of Rodgers’ program), dances several days a week and is learning to lift weights so he can develop the strength to partner with female dancers safely (doing all those lifts and holds takes muscle). He got a job to pay for his ballet shoes and brought his grades up enough at school so he could join the band. He’s hooked on performing as a musician and a dancer – not hooked on drugs or performing as a gang member. He is succeeding, he will graduate high school, and maybe, with Rodgers’ mentorship, go to college.
All because one guy stood up and committed to making a tangible difference for a part of Tucson that normally only gets noticed for its crime rates. You go, Joey, and I hope to see the result of your love and dedication on Dec. 26!
The economic meltdown has launched any number of new small businesses as people get laid off from their jobs, take salary cuts or find out that they have to support family members who have lost their jobs.
Such is the case with Tucsonan Christiana Staller, owner and operator of Little Flower House Cleaners. I’m writing about Christiana today because she’s one of the happiest women I know, in spite of a background that would have crushed lesser women. She just believes in believing in yourself, learning from your mistakes, and starting over again – although it took her a number of years to get to that happy space after years as a domestic violence victim.
So when her housecleaning business started to lose customers as people who hired her lost their jobs and had to clean their homes themselves, Christiana – a single mother with three of her five children still living at home – didn’t sit down and feel sorry for herself. She just got busy with Passion Parties. (Motto: “The ultimate Girls Night In.”)
You’ve heard of Tupperware parties and Pampered Chef, no doubt. A Woman invites over some friends, opens a bottle of wine, passes around some snacks and they all watch a consultant demonstrate items that can later be purchased. Passion Parties is along the same lines except there isn’t any burping of plastic or cooking lessons involved.
“The way I explain it to the ladies is that Passion Parties accessories bring passion and romance back to their lives,” Christiana said. “There are lots of creams, lotions, body washes, perfumes, things that will make you feel beautiful and sexy and then, of course, there are toys to play with because, after all, sex is supposed to be fun!”
Christiana’s New York cousin convinced her to give the job a go two months ago, and so now Christiana can clean a woman’s bedroom in the morning and then offer to sell her, ahem, “items” to spice up the marital bed at a party that night.
“You can just get a catalogue from me and order from there but it is more fun to have a party and the hostess gets discounts based on what people at her party might buy,” Christiana says. “The girls just have some wine, talk girl talk about love and live and buy some stuff. It’s fun!”
The items for purchase range from $10 to $175 and if you’d like to host a party and put a little passion into your life (because, after all, it IS Happiness Wednesday), contact Christiana at firstname.lastname@example.org