Entries by Karen Kitchel

To Honor Motherhood

To honor the sacrifices mothers made for their children, Anna Jarvis organized the first official Mother’s Day celebration in West Virginia in 1908.

While arguing that American holidays were biased toward male achievements, she started a massive letter writing campaign to newspapers and prominent politicians urging the adoption of a special day honoring motherhood. Jarvis also established the Mother’s Day International Association to promote her cause.

Her persistence paid off in 1914 when President Woodrow Wilson signed a measure officially establishing the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. By the time of Anna Jarvis’s death, over 40 countries observed Mother’s Day.

Big hugs and thanks to Moms everywhere!


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Why Teens Volunteer

More than half of American teenagers and young adults are volunteers. We might think people of all ages volunteer their time because they want to support a cause they care about. However, teens and young adults volunteer regularly if and where their friends do, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

DoSomething.org mobilizes young people to get involved in social change.  One of their studies revealed the most common form of support by volunteers was assistance with fundraising. If you combine social networking skills with teens who are passionate about a cause, you might find a surprising amount of funds being raised.

Interesting findings:
• Young people who reported sending out frequent text messages were 13 percent more likely to have volunteered.
• Students in private high schools were 25 percent more likely to volunteer than those in public schools.

What Increases Volunteerism
*Offer a chance to socialize. A top …
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Scattering Easter Eggs

Imagine the delight of someone finding the egg you filled with little surprises. They probably smiled when they saw the chocolates, jelly beans, or the note saying “you are special.”

Scatter some plastic eggs in places where they will likely be found, like on park benches. Then all that’s left is imagining the delight!


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What Can You Do With One Shiny Penny?

A shiny penny is said to bring good luck. But have you ever considered using that one shiny penny to bring joy to someone?

When I was young, my brothers and I would gather up our pennies and rub them on the living room carpet until they glowed. Then we would stash them away to buy some penny candy. Those were the days!

Today I still save my shiny pennies until there is a nice stack. I discovered a fountain at the Mall of America where kids need only a penny to make a wish. After scattering pennies on the ledge, where they are sure be found, it’s fun to sit back and watch what happens.

One day a little guy came along, and I heard his Mom explain how to make a wish. She wouldn’t budge on him having to close his eyes or it wouldn’t come true. Next …
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Looking For Kind People

Know a kind soul? Heard about someone whose middle name should be “kind”?

Take a chance on having your unsung hero featured here. No rules on who, where or what. Your opinion matters.

Send what you want others to see by April 8 to karenkitchel@comcast.net

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Springtime Scattering

Welcome back birds and flowers – and frequent smiles! On the day spring arrives, our sense of wonder expands.

Add a bit more spring to your step today. Stop to say hello to someone you don’t know. Scatter a bit of kindness wherever you go.

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Questions Needing Answers

Here’s an opportunity to give advice to support youth in low-income communities, such as students who plan to become the first in their family to attend college, or students who are first generation immigrants. Working in communities traditionally lacking the most access, CareerVillage uses the power of their website to enable the most underserved youth to find new pathways.

More than 15,000 volunteers have shared their experiences. Once you sign in, you can customize your profile to identify the types of questions you would like to answer. You can then answer just the questions relevant to your background or expertise.

Here are a few examples of questions being asked:

* How can I make myself look like the best candidate for a scholarship?
* What qualities and skills do startups look for in a new hire?
* From a singers point of view, what’s life like?
* Are there any …
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Receiving With Grace

(By Guest Blogger, Leah Renter)

Asking for and receiving help can be difficult for me.

Maybe it’s geographic. Equal parts stubborn German and proud Midwesterner, I was raised to roll up my sleeves and rely on sheer work ethic. Maybe it’s genetic. I once argued with my grandmother for ten minutes in line at Subway over who was paying for the $5.50 cold cut combo. Or maybe it’s just me. I couldn’t accept a compliment with a simple, “Thank you” until my early 20’s. Perhaps you’re like me — only in your comfort zone on the giving end of the equation. In recent years, I’ve come to learn that receiving gracefully is the other (and often more difficult) side of the same coin.

During the past year, I’ve taken on a large home renovation project with my partner, and we’ve relied on so many people to complete the work. While …
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While You’re Away

Vacations should be fun!  Exploring new places and experiencing something new often adds to an adventure.  When planning a trip to the Caribbean, we chose Grenada because it appeared to offer a good variety of things to do, not to mention turquoise water and white sandy beaches.

We chose to stay at the Mount Cinammon Resort where we learned they have a “Pack for a Purpose Program.” Guests are invited to bring small school supplies to support the South St. George’s Primary School.  Being a volunteer kindergarten teacher, I liked the idea of spreading a bit of kindness around the globe. Spending time with some of the students was a real delight!  They say “If you save just a few kilos of space in your suitcase and take supplies for the project we support, you’ll make a priceless impact in the lives of our local children and families.”

You don’t …
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