Welcome to the Mahoning Valley Podcast. We are doing a show today in keeping with the winter holiday season that looks at ways we can practice unity in the Mahoning Valley in order to create a better place for all of our residents. Then we will talk briefly about winter survival because sometimes it is just good to get a reminder of how to take care of ourselves and our families during the arctic months. Then we will look at a few events going on this weekend if you are going to be looking for something to do.
Unity is defined as a state of oneness. It can also be defined as a whole or totality as combining all its parts into one. Or even oneness of mind, feeling, etc., as among a number of persons; concord, harmony, or agreement. Why is this important here in the Mahoning Valley or anywhere people live in a community?
It seems to be common sense, but recognizing that we are all a part of a whole, with our own roles to play sometimes eludes us while we make our way through our daily lives. It is easy to say to oneself, “its not my problem.” Or “I am glad thats not me”. I have said both of these things at times. But I was wrong. As a part of the human family, it was me and it is my problem too. That is one of the ways we can live together in harmony. Empathy. Recognizing that when it affects one person, it affects all of us.
So it is about being conscious of our tendency to judge each other. We want to understand each other but it is our natural tendency to seek this understanding through judging each other. And that is when we need to practice mindfulness.
I know it is not always easy, but personally I have found this to be one of the most useful mental disciplines. Just staying in the moment. For most of my life, I have been distracted by my fears of the future or my regrets in the past. As we all know, we cannot change the past. And for the most part, we cannot predict what the future holds. Many people would say that the future is what we make it today. Our decisions today make our tomorrows. Or even that there is no such thing as tomorrow. It is a abstract concept we use to assure ourselves that there will be another time to do something or say something.
Evidence exists all the time to the contrary. Just look at the Obituaries. This moment is the only tangible one. Where we can choose to accept ourselves and others as is. And seek to empathize. Look for commonality. And find ways to work together to build a future that embraces the potential of every one of us.
Let’s look at how we can apply this to our community in the Mahoning Valley or wherever you may live. Wherever you are listening to this, the world is competing for your attention. And so is your own body. So choose to act as if we are all one. Here is a practical way you can do that. And after this message, hopefully you will start seeing other opportunities to share your talents, skills and abilities with your neighbors and friends and even people you don’t know today.
Winter Survival. I know most of us have heard about it from our mainstream media outlets. Although I also know that some of us have grown tired of listening to the media. It seems like the same news all the time. So and so got shot, or was killed in a car accident or has some gripe with how our fine government or community is governed.
It’s not the fault of the mainstream. They have economics to consider. It cost money to produce news shows and transmit them. And when the ratings come in, they need to sell advertising to keep the news coming. What many people listen to and watch involve the tragedies of our existence on the Earth. And that is how the mainstream media pays the bills.
Let’s look at some basic tips real quick just as reminder. As most of you are experiencing with me here in the Mahoning Valley, it looks like winter is here again.
If you are in your car listening today, remember to slow down and pay attention. Give yourself some extra time, and if you are running late. Let it go and slow down. It is ok to be late and its better then being dead. And if you havent done so already get your survival kit in there. You know the basics Blankets, Water bottles, Food, flashlight, something to break out a window in a worst case scenario. What else goes in a car winter survival kit? Here is a fine list from Amazon (affiliate link) And a pdf to download and take to the store with you.
Also on the list is a shovel, any medications you may need, a tow chain and flares or emergency flashers separate from the ones on your car. Please do not drink or text while driving.
What about if you are hunkering down in the house like I do when it is this cold? If you are using space heaters to supplement your house heat, make sure that they are clear from all obstructions and in the middle of the room. Also, let the winter chores keep you active. I love to stay in bed all day and snuggle into my microfiber blankies, but there is still stuff to do around the house and property. Stay active. Get a humidifier and use your moisturizers. And if you want to avoid the winter blues, get yourself a Vitamin D supplement with the advice of your physician of course.
If you are going to go outdoors, layer them clothes and make sure you have all your body parts covered up. Don’t plan winter activities outdoors when it is so cold the schools close. Our school administrators dont give them youngins snow days so they can go outside and get frostbite. And they don’t give them snowdays so you can be outside all days with them and get it yourself.
And make sure you have a Storm Preparation Kit assembled in your home too. Although it has been some time since we have had a huge snowstorm, it is a possibility.
Know the lay of the land so if you have to evacuate, you can plan accordingly. Have your emergency supplies up to date and don’t tell yourself, I did this last year so I am good to go. It is important to rotate all the food stores in your home, canned goods and frozen. Please don’t plan on using candles to light your way, have flashlights and batteries.
We can all survive winter together with a little preparation and awareness.
You looking for something to do this weekend? Here are a few of my picks for enjoying our beuatiful valley. As many of you who know me are aware, Mill Creek Park is one of my favorite places in this region. So why not roll out to the Park this weekend? Just remember to bundle up.
Get more information at the link on the show notes at mahoningvalleypodcast.com Here is the rundown:
Take a trip back through the last 125 years as you rediscover Mill Creek Park. Stroll along inside the Davis Center to see your favorite iconic park structures – Lanterman’s Mill and the Silver Suspension Bridge, annual holiday tree walk, a student-led Chihuly inspired display, and seasonal blooms. During the first three weekends (Saturday & Sunday), we are open until 8pm for you to experience the Electric Garden, where the grounds will be lit with thousands of twinkling lights. Remember to stop in the Shop in the Gardens to find that perfect gift and savor refreshments available for purchase in Kravitz’s Garden Café.
December 3-31, Tuesdays-Sundays, 10:00am-5:00pm
Extended hours – Saturdays & Sundays, December 3-4, 10-11, & 17-18, 10:00am-8:00pm
(closed Mondays and Christmas Day)
Friday night 12-16-16 at 8PM
If you have never visited a planetarium or haven’t been in a while, this is a must do. You can be reminded of the vastness of the universe while being entertained with incredible visual effects and music. And it is inside. And Family Friendly. Where is it you ask?
2001 Ward Beecher Hall
Holiday Lights: 8 to 9 p.m. Dec. 11, 12, 18 and 19, Ward Beecher Planetarium, Youngstown State University, One University Plaza, Youngstown. The planetarium’s annual holiday program combines lights, music and visual effects with the wonders of the winter season and outer space.
Holiday music by The Elegant String Quartet at the Boardman Park
St. James Meeting House
December 17, 2016
During the hustle and bustle of the Holidays take an evening to relax and come and listen to some of your favorite Holiday music performed by The Elegant String Quartet. Listen to the sounds of warmth and tradition while being surrounded in a beautiful atmosphere decorated with homemade ornaments made by the Holborn Herb Growers Guild.
And then after that, how about seeing a whole bunch of very fit and attractive people in skimpy outfits beating the heck out of each other?
What could be better?
Head on over the Covelli Centre for the WWE’s return to Youngstown just in time for the Holidays! Featuring Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens, Roman Reigns, Rusev, New Day, Enzo & Big Cass, Sasha Banks, and many more!
All that entertainment for as little as $15.00 a seat. And enough loud music and muscles to last the rest of your year.
Do you need some last minute gifts for the holiday? Then Sunday head on over to the Last Minute Market at the B&O Station Banquet Hall Sunday, December 18th 11-6pm. A great place to pick up some last minute, handmade gifts from your local artists. Art, food and beer….what more could you need for an excellent Sunday afternoon! Don’t miss it, support your local artists this holiday season.
Then you can head down to Austintown for
The Great Christmas Quest, a Sunday dinner theater, by the Stage Door, Mahoning Valleys premier performing arts academy, at the California Palms Hotel. The Great Christmas Quest is an interactive comedy show where the audience participates in the filming of an infomercial. Audience participation with scavenger hunt for clues. Show and Dinner only $34. Room specials also available. Call the Palms at 330-935-2663 for reservations.
The Great Christmas Quest: Joe, the main character, revolutionized science with his latest invention: Invisospray. He is thrilled to be filming an infomercial for his ground-breaking product, but a rival inventor is not so happy. He steals the Invisospray and escapes the infomercial set. It’s up to a fast-talking pitch woman to locate the thief, and she just might need some help. With lots of audience participation, the play features an optional Clue Quest in which the audience helps to solve the mystery and catch the crook.
So thats a wrap for this episode of the Mahoning Valley Podcast And because it is Christmas here in the Valley I just wanted to remind you that it is better to give than to receive.