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Embrace the new requirements and be festive!

Thanksgiving is a bit different this year for a lot of people. Gatherings may be smaller, and distant relatives may be absent, unable or unwilling to risk travel. Others may be changing their traditional feasts in defiant ways, tired of the restrictions. They may gather together in large crowds, proclaiming their “rights”, saying how this could be their last year with older relatives and “no one is going to stop them.” I pray these “last years” aren’t as a result of Covid.

This year seems to have an angrier feel. People are tired of being afraid, tired of having the familiar patterns of their lives changed. They are tired of being ruled by an invisible enemy, one so small they can only trust that the measures they are told to take are effective in defeating it. …


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We seem to have gone from “giving” to “gimmee”. Thanksgiving used to be a day when we spent time with family and friends, watching parades and football and eating too much. I don’t recall much quiet reflection, and the giving of thanks was pretty much restricted to a mumbled reply when someone passed you that second piece of pie. I also remember pouring over the giant stack of store ads, feeling that excitement building for the upcoming hunt. I would have to step away when I could feel myself being drawn in like a member of the borg collective. “Must. Have. The. Shiny. …


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Each day is a chance for a new beginning.

Someone once told me (spitefully) that I could be happy because nothing bad had ever happened to me. Which of course wasn’t true — no one goes through life unblemished.

I replied by turning her phrase around a bit. Maybe, I replied, maybe bad things hadn’t happened to me because I could be happy.

It’s all about perspective. Life either sucks and turns you into a bitter prune…or life sucks and you head in a different direction; a practical application of that old quote that says, if it hurts to do that — don’t do it!

Over the years I’ve stopped doing a lot of things that hurt, and gone on to bang my head against a number of other walls. Life (fate, God, karma, whatever you call it) will do that to us, and how you respond speaks volumes about who you are — or who you will become. …


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Do you start the day with a morning routine?

During times when the whole world seems to be spinning out of control, routines are not only comforting, they are necessary.

This is the latest revelation in a series of “lessons our dog taught me”. Jack, our chihuahua, is a nervous, feisty, loving and fiercely loyal protector. His early life details are unknown, but they caused him to be wary of everyone and everything. He finds comfort and security in daily routines and will often come stare at us expectantly when it is time for potty breaks or bedtime.

My husband and I have a daily routine also, a home-made latte, which we make at about the same time each afternoon. It’s a welcome break from his work and my writing, and we both enjoy the camaraderie of a shared task. On the rare occasions when we have missed our daily routine, I am left feeling a strange sense of loss. …


Fun for All Ages, from the Safety of Your Home!

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Stay safe, stay connected

Looks like it might be a while before this “Corona Craziness” is over. This list is for those of you who are sheltering in place, under quarantine or just wanting to spend time at home. These resources are FREE (with the exception of my books — as an author, I had to mention these — hope you’ll take a moment to check them out). I’ll be adding to the list on our website as I find new information, so feel free to check back there [https://bestlife.tips/]. …


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It costs nothing, to click “Like” or “thumbs up”. Yet so few people do it. I don’t understand. I see so many YouTube videos, where the views number in the tens of thousands, or even over a million, and yet the “thumbs up” are a fraction of that number. Why? The “thumbs down” are a smaller number, so it can’t be that the majority of the people hated it.

It takes a fraction of a second to click like, yet so few people do that. I see it on my Facebook author page, where I post poetry I have written. The views are always higher than the reactions. Unlike YouTube, readers have a wider range of responses they can click, everything from “Like” to “Love” to “Hate”. …


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Sometimes, ya just Gotta laugh!

Life amuses me. Literally! It sometimes feels like the world was created just to make me giggle. “And in the beginning, God created …. Humor!” Genesis — as written by me. Don’t worry — if God was gonna smite me, it would have happened a long time ago….when I suggested communion would be more efficient (and sanitary) if they used Pez dispensers for the host. Gasp if you will, but I believe humor is one of God’s gifts. I feel sorry for the people who seem to have no sense of humor — how awful must their lives be?

I have a hard time keeping my mouth shut sometimes. Okay — Most of the time. Some days I feel like I am on a stage with the audience playing the straight man — feeding me lines that just beg for a snappy comeback. For example, a customer once asked me “where would I go to get a letter from the bank?” That just begged for a sarcastic answer! But I held my tongue. On another occasion, a man told me he couldn’t make corrections to a form we had faxed him because he no longer had the paper. He had “sent it to us,” he explained. Thinking he had put it in an envelope, I asked when he had mailed it. He said no — he had faxed it back to us. I said, “but you don’t have the form still?” I hope I didn’t sound rude — I was truly baffled by his answer! My mind immediately raced off on a tangent, picturing “Mission Impossible” type fax machines that would destroy the paper as soon as it had been faxed. …


And No — it’s not “Thank You”

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We Are Open!

Don’t get so busy trying to soothe angry customers that you ignore the happy ones. It’s true “squeaky wheels get the grease”, and it’s true that you need to take care of those customers. But if that’s your only focus, you run a risk of missing the quiet departures of other customers. The quiet ones, the ones who never complain, the ones who leave because they just felt ignored or unimportant. There is no dramatic exit, no slamming door, just the soft sigh of opportunity passing you by.

This past February I used the occasion of my birthday to conduct an informal field test. Months before, I had signed up for a number of restaurant eClubs, in order to gather some birthday freebies. And gather I did! A regular bounty of free meals, beverages, and desserts! …


It’s Your Choice that Saves or Loses Customers

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Fill those empty seats with loyal customers!

I hate getting corrected or scolded. Whether it’s a snarky comment on social media or a pompous sales clerk doesn’t matter — negative comments make me feel small.

Recently, a local restaurant offered us a “Buy One Get One” meal deal for my husband’s birthday. The coupon specified “dine-in only”. It was a great deal, and we wanted to do something to celebrate the occasion, but with all the concern about Covid-19, and the fact that I’m in the “vulnerable” group, we just didn’t feel safe going out to eat. …


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Everyone knows that greeting customers is one of the best ways to prevent shoplifting. But what about customers with baby strollers?

News flash — Not all baby strollers contain babies. Some are just handy carriers for stolen goods. So whenever a parent came into our store, pushing a baby carriage, we had an established routine. I’d alert the employees by saying something like “did you see that cute baby?” This was their cue to be on the lookout.

It was easy to check — we’d just walk up to the parent and say, “aww! Can I see your baby?” What parent doesn’t want to show off their baby? If the carriage was covered (and the baby was real), most parents would lift a corner of the blanket to let us look. If they didn’t, we’d say, “sure, I understand. Don’t want to wake the baby!” Then we’d be sure to tell the other employees not to wake the baby — making sure the parent(s) heard us doing that. If the situation was legitimate, the parent appreciated our concern. …

About

Donna (“Dee”) Wylie

Donna (“Dee” to friends) Wylie is primary writer at ChiWow Media, and author of 9 books on Amazon, including her popular denture series, The 7 Stages of Teeth.

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