Thursday, December 12, 2013

Secret Santa Challenge

“Christmas time has come
and it’s time for some fun.
I leave a gift and run,
Secret Santa has begun.”

The Christmas Season is upon us and many of us are rushing around, shopping, baking, wrapping presents and more. I know that for me, one way to put a smile in my heart is to help someone less fortunate. Many years ago I started the tradition of “Secret Santa”. Each year I would pick a family going through financial difficulties or someone alone and make it my goal to ensure that their Christmas was a little bit brighter. The gift I received in return far encompassed the gifts that I gave. Being someone who has been in financial hardships myself I found that it’s not always a gift you purchase. It can be something as simple as a card or a visit to someone who is lonely.  We all have something to give.

Last year I was going through some financial hardships. It was also my granddaughter’s first Christmas. I didn’t have a Christmas Tree and I was worried about buying groceries for Christmas dinner. After giving each and every year I was feeling very sad not to be able to help anyone that year. Then I saw one of my friends on Facebook was asking for donations for a young boy that most likely wasn’t getting much for Christmas. My heart told me to give what I could. The only extra money I had at the time was $2.00. I put that money in an envelope and gave it to the person asking for donations. They thanked me like I had given them $1,000.00. It felt good to be giving something.  What happened next totally blew me away. The next day I went to the Post Office to pick up my mail. There was a Christmas Card from someone I barely knew. I opened it up and Inside there was a message, “Sometimes bad times fall upon good people, God loves you and so do we.”  They had enclosed a gift certificate for $250 to our local grocery/clothing store. I was totally shocked. I was on the receiving end and was humbled beyond words. I could buy all the items for a wonderful Christmas Dinner for my daughter and her family and a few presents too! A few days later some friends showed up at my door with the most beautiful Christmas Tree I had ever seen! I had a tree! I had never been so blessed as I was that Christmas. I then understood even more how priceless the “Secret Santa” tradition was to others.

Warriors, I am asking you to please stop what you are doing in this busy season and think of something good you can do for someone else. I would love it if you would post the stories on our Facebook wall so we can all share. Remember, even $2.00 can make a difference.

Wishing you the most wonderful Christmas of all with the Spirit of Giving!

Peace & Love,
Heidi St. Jean

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Dairy Bar Crew receives big tip, pays it forward

Three members of the exemplary team at the Dairy Bar in downtown Greenville, Maine, left to right, Haylie Genoa, Ava Henderson & Aysia Jardine

By Jonathan Pratt
Courtesy Moosehead Matters August 20 Edition

GREENVILLE – Since 1952, the Frostieland Dairy Bar has served visitors in the Moosehead Lake Region, all with a smile under the lakeside summer sun. This year, however, stands out as extra special to Manager Darralyn Gauvin, “This has been the least stressed summer I have ever had.”

Evidence of the top-notch service exhibited by the 2013 Summer Staff can be summed up by a story from Gauvin of a recent encounter that left she, and the ladies of the Dairy Bar, smiling ear to ear.

One evening, Gauvin was shopping at Indian Hill Trading Post, when a gentleman stopped her and showered the Dairy Bar girls with praise, as he went on and on about the efficiency and teamwork he witnessed as a patron of the Dairy Bar. For her part, Gauvin thanked the man and went about her business shopping.

The next thing she knew, the gentleman returned with a bank envelope. He handed the envelope to Gauvin and asked her to give “one of these to each of the girls at the Dairy Bar.”

When she returned to the Dairy Bar, Gauvin opened the envelope and found ten fifty-dollar bills! One for each of the ten girls at the Dairy Bar. The “team” includes Aysia Jardine, Ava Henderson, Haylie Genoa, Carli Peat, Molly Foley, Miranda Drinkwater, Courtney Mann, Grace Bilodeau, Katie Perry, Kylie Roberts and Drewan Berbaker (both from Virginia).

As one can imagine, the girls were ecstatic to hear that someone had been so impressed with their work ethic and their “spirit”, they felt compelled to tip each of them in such a way.

When the girls came down from their elation, they talked it over and decided they would pay it forward by donating ten percent of the tip to a charity of their choice. And they chose the Riley Lizotte Memorial Playground.

The lesson of the day may just be that this particular gentleman picked the right group of young people to tip, and the ladies of the Dairy Bar learned just how important it is to treat everyone as a special customer, because you never know who the person on the other side of the counter may be!

If you would like to donate to the Riley Lizotte Memorial Playground Fund you can donate through PayPal email prudy or send a check to Prudy Richards PO Box 248 Greenville, ME  04441. You can also donate your returnables and drop them off at Rick & Brenda Lavigne’s Redemption Center.

Friday, August 9, 2013


If a man wants you, nothing can keep him away.
If he doesn’t want you, nothing can make him stay. Stop making excuses for a man and his behavior. Allow your intuition (or spirit) to save you from heartache.

Stop trying to change yourself for a relationship that’s not meant to be. Slower is better. Never live your life for a man before you find what makes you truly happy. If a relationship ends because the man was not treating you as you deserve then heck no, you can’t “be friends”. A friend wouldn’t mistreat a friend.

Don’t settle. If you feel like he is stringing you along, then he probably is. Don’t stay because you think “it will get better.” You’ll be mad at yourself a year later for staying when things are not better. The only person you can control in a relationship is you. Avoid men you have a bunch of children by a bunch of different women. He didn’t marry them when he got them pregnant, why would he treat you any differently? Always have your own set of friends separate from his. Maintain boundaries in how a guy treats you. If something bothers you, speak up. Never let a man know everything. He will use it against you later.

You cannot change a man’s behavior. Change comes from within. Don’t EVER make him feel he is more important than you are. Even if he has more education or is in a better job. Do not make him into a Quasi-God. He is a man, nothing more, nothing less.

Never let a man define who you are. Never borrow someone else’s man. If he cheated with you, he’ll cheat on you. A man will only treat you the way you ALLOW him to treat you. All men are NOT dogs.

You should not be the one doing the bending…compromise is a 2-way street. You need time to heal between relationships. There is nothing cute about baggage. Deal with your issues before pursuing a new relationship. You should never look for someone to COMPLETE you. A relationship consists of two WHOLE individuals. Look for someone complimentary…not supplementary.

Dating is fun…even if he doesn’t turn out to be Mr. Right. Make him miss you sometimes. When a man always knows where you are, and you’re always readily available to him, he takes it for granted. Never move into his mother’s house. Never co-sign for a man. Don’t fully commit to a man who doesn’t give you everything that you need. Keep him in your radar but get to know others.

Scared of being alone is what makes a lot of women stay in relationships that are abusive or hurtful. Dr Phil says, “You should know that you’re the best thing that could ever happen to anyone and if a man mistreats you, he’ll miss out on a good thing. If he was attracted to you in the first place, just know that he’s not the only one. They’re all watching you, so you have a lot of choices. Make the right one. Ladies take care of your own hearts…