Innovative Giving

•January 7, 2013 • Leave a Comment

A photo excerpted from Gabrielle Blair’s January 7, 2013 blog post “A Different Perspective”   What a unique way to donate to a shelter and save the lives of dogs least likely to be adopted.  Short but inspiring read!


What follows #BlackFriday and #CyberMonday?

•November 27, 2012 • Leave a Comment

It’s #GivingTuesday!  Hundreds of thousands of people crowded malls and the Internet highway over the past five days scooping up Christmas gifts, a year’s worth of clothes for growing children, the newest electronics hoped for over the past year, and “stuff” in the name of buying just because of the sale.  But what about the thousands of people who couldn’t drum up a dollar, even though clothing at the cheapest price would have kept them warm when they ran out of money and heat, toys would have created a smile absent due to the stress of trying to live, and food would have made for a content night and energetic day?#GivingTuesday not only reminds us to help our neighbor, but to help those less fortunate who may be desperate for just a kind hand or word from a stranger.

It is a national day of giving meant to encourage each of us to find someone who needs a helping hand, a boost to get ahead (or just stay afloat) and do it!.  After all, science shows helping someone else makes us much happier than giving to ourselves.  So to all of my friends, I challenge you to stop buying “stuff” and buy someone else a day of respite, a smile or a happy and healthy belly! 


•March 2, 2012 • Leave a Comment


I love giving presents, and especially like making them.  This week is my sister’s birthday and I thought she would like a collection of freshwater pearls-knotted pearls, pearls & crystals, and button pearls all gathered with a sterling clasp.  What do you think?  Do you make any of your gifts?

Happy People of Waynesboro

•February 25, 2012 • 1 Comment

This week’s new adventure was on the “other side of the mountain”.  My daughter’s boyfriend’s family (too many possessives?) are commercial developers.  His parents own storefronts in Waynesboro and operate one retail  outlet themselves.  They went away for the weekend and my daughter offered to mind the store.  I was enlisted to keep her company and off we went for the past 2 mornings.  Of course the early mornings were an excuse to ride through Starbucks (yum Chai Tea Latte and Peppermint/Raspberry Latte) and I can’t say enough about how fun it is to have drive-through Starbucks on a cold windy morning.  Have you noticed Waynesboro gets the coolest stuff before Charlottesville?

I thought I might be bored by the end of our shifts but both days were fun!  I haven’t had the opportunity to operate a register since high school and didn’t make as many mistakes as I thought I might.  I only overcharged one customer but caught it before she got away and only bagged items forgetting to ring them up once (I didn’t say I was good at operating a cash register!).  I enjoyed time with my daughter and we laughed a lot.  But what I was most impressed with were the happy people of Waynesboro.  I’m sure the store owner has done much to cultivate the friendly store environment but every single customer came in and left with a smile and almost everyone chirped a “hello” before I could.  In fact, it seemed to be a race between customers and my daughter to see who could utter the first “how are you”.

We both left as happy as we came with the exception of my feet (not used to standing for hours).  Is it just me or does the Waynesboro community appear to be happier to you than this side of the mountain?  And what about you?  Do you have a favorite shop because it consistently has a friendly environment?

This was my first post-retirement working adventure and it was great fun.  When is the last time you spent a few hours or a few days performing a new job?

Being Hutch again….

•February 21, 2012 • 3 Comments

I am back to just “being hutch”.  I am excited, nervous, ready to go, ready to slow-an amalgamation of so many feelings about so many possibilities.  In other words, I’ve decided to retire to find a new adventure for the second part of my century.

Two years ago I turned 50 (and yes Virginia, 50 is the new 40!).  I had my first surgery and my first  real desire to have more time to live a different life, a slower life.  One where I could spend more time with my sweet, sweet mother who came to bring me lunch every day I was off.  One where I could spend a few days doing something special with her as a thank you for her time.

One year ago I turned 51.  My mother had her first surgery followed by a series of complications.  While I was able to spend a few hours with her here and there, I was not able to devote the days I felt she and my father needed and deserved.  Those days would have made their lives a little easier and I experienced a sadness I could not give these wonderful people my time who gave me days and days of their time.

This year I turned 52.  I realized my oldest niece is graduating from high school and I’ve only seen her at Christmas and the annual family gathering on Christmas day for the past 5 years.  I found out this year she is an extremely talented artist.  Why didn’t I know that before?  My only other niece is a talented musician and I have yet to hear her sing.  I have a close cousin who spends Christmas with my parents each year.  I just found out she has become a gourmet chef.  Why didn’t I know that before?  My brother built a garage several years ago and I haven’t been there to see it.  My sister became a gardener and I haven’t been there to visit her garden.  They are each only an hour or two away but I haven’t been able to find the time to be their sister.  My only daughter is living at home, but temporarily.  She invites me to do things weekly yet I say no many more times than yes.  What happens when she quits asking?  I hear my friends talk about shopping trips, lunch together, and girls weekends away.  I feel jealous I can rarely participate.

So I’ve decided it is time.  Time to be the daughter, sister, aunt, wife, mother and friend I feel I need to be.  I am blessed to be able to decide it is time to explore opportunities and adventures before I can’t for some reason. Time to accept it is the second half of my century.  Time to go back to “being Hutch”.

What would you do if you could stop and decide to change directions?  What excites you?  My adventure is beginning and I can’t wait to see where it goes.  Will I start a business?  Go to school?  Become a nurse?   Make jewelry?  Read everyday?  Run everyday?  Cook?  What about you?

•February 7, 2011 • 1 Comment

Life is too short not to have fun.  That means in all walks of life.  Does a pediatrician always have to be a grown-up at work?  Not in my book.  This shark is my crazy cousin, Dr. K, who loves life.  Join him and make someone happy somewhere.

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