By Michelle Porchia
My 16 (almost 17) year young granddaughter, Davonna, visited me for two weeks this month. I haven’t seen her since I moved to North Carolina in September 2013. When I lived in Connecticut, she spent at least one weekend a month with me, sometimes more. It was great to spend some time with her.
She is in high school, in a culinary program. She plans on attending culinary school when she graduates. So while here I took her to some of my favorite eating places. The food was a variety of cultures and presentations. Of course, we couldn’t leave out the ice cream shop of Mapleview Farms. She has now deemed it the best ice cream in the world. I also took her to my favorite frozen yogurt place. We drove cars at an amusement park and challenged each other in arcade games.
I call Davonna the "Fashionista" as she loves fashion. Until a few years ago, she was equally interested in becoming a fashion designer as she was interested in clothes and design.
I have encouraged all my grandchildren to do what they love, and I have supported them from day one. All my grandchildren love to read, and I am so glad. Some more than others, but all of them love books, even down to the 18 month old. Many of them are creative through art or music. I am glad that they all have a love for the arts and for education. All my grandchildren do well, if not exceptional, in school. Davonna is an honor student and we had to make time for math homework while she was here as she had to do 3-5 hours of math.
Although she is interested in culinary arts school, one of my mentees took her around The University of North Carolina (UNC). She totally enjoyed seeing the school and spending time with a 21-year-old college graduate who has been commissioned in the Air Force.
Besides being a proud grandmother, I’m sharing this with you because our youth are our future. We need to encourage them, support them and spend time with them. We can also learn from them. We had a great time. Although I was glad to get my space and quiet back and she was glad to leave the southern sizzling 90+ heat, we both were sad for her to return home.
Enjoy the rest of your summer and, if possible, spend some time with a young person.
By Nancy J. Lewis, MS, PHR, RCC
Photo Above: Smartphone apps like Footsteps can help you
maintain a healthy fitness routine.
As we continue to face the challenges of life, it is critical we develop strategies for healthy living. What are you doing to live a healthier life? What changes will you have to make to do this? Healthy living is about making better choices. Consider some of the following strategies for living a healthier life.
1. Start an exercise program that works for you and fits into your schedule. This can be as simple as a 30 minute walk in your neighborhood or local park. You take the stairs instead of the elevator at work. You park farther away when going to the store or mall. The key is to begin even if you start out doing just 15 minutes a day, just do it. Whether you have a health club membership or not, allow your creative mind to explore ways to incorporate exercise in your daily routine.
2. Start using your kitchen and eat at home more. We are working longer hours, running errands for the family, and eating out frequently. It is time to go back to basics and plan dinner meals for at least 2-3 days a week. We need to revisit what our parents and grandparents did years ago and cook multiple meals on the weekend. Challenge yourself to eat more baked and grilled foods, fresh fruits, vegetables, and add more fiber to your diet. Reduce your intake of fried and processed foods and commit to cooking healthier meals for your family.
3. Start your day with inspiration. This could be reading your Bible, motivational books, or whatever provides you with peace and purpose. The key is you must continue to nourish and feed your mind with positive information in order to grow and be the best you can be. Spend time with children and seniors as they both provide inspirational lessons to help you on this journey called life.
Book Debra, Michelle, Nancy or Carole for your next speaking engagement or training event.