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This long, very long week is only standing at Tuesday. It feels like two weeks have been crammed into these past few days, but it is Tuesday… just Tuesday.

For the past several weeks I have endured a flare-up of chronic pancreatitis which has confined me to bed most of my non-teaching hours. Although it is better it has left me very fatigued.

Saturday afternoon, I received a telephone call from Mother relating the news that my four year old nephew, and Godson, Freddie, was at the emergency room in Lafayette (IN) due to severe burns. He stepped into a crock pot of boiling soup which was on the floor of the family van. Before long, more messages began arriving that Freddie was being taken to the burn unit at Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis. On a scale of 1-10, Freddie’s injuries were a 15.

The past few days have been incredibly tense, yet the Caring Bridge journal entries written by my sister-in-law, Stacia, have been incredibly uplifting, and informative. Wednesday at 11:30am, Freddie will go into surgery.

Tonight while teaching my last few lessons, I learned my aunt, Sue Richardson, had died.

Despite the strain of illness, the sickening worry over my nephew, and the sadness at the departure of a family member, I am still happy, content with life, and grateful for the many blessings I’ve been afforded. The past few days, the support from friends, students and their families has been extraordinary! Thank you!

Tonight, Quintin, Casey and I celebrated GOTCHA DAY – Quintin’s one year anniversary – with a dinner, and tons of laughter – which of course, Casey contributes so much.

Tomorrow is another day, and one to which I will look forward rather than dread.

7 Things Highly Productive People Do

You have more important things to focus on than, um, focusing. Get back on track with these tips.

By Ilya Pozin | @ilyaNeverSleeps | Dec 13, 2011

You probably don’t want to admit it but you love distractions. In fact, just like monkeys, you get a shot of dopamine every time something pulls you in another direction. Why do you think you check your email so much?

Want to be more productive and get your focus back? There are no secret tricks here… do one thing at a time. Stop multitasking—it’s just another form of distraction.

Easier said than done, I know.

Recently I sat down with Tony Wong, a project management blackbelt whose client list includes Toyota, Honda, and Disney, to name a few. He’s an expert in keeping people on task, so I thought he’d be a good person to ask.

Here are his tips for staying productive:

Work backwards from goals to milestones to tasks. Writing “launch company website” at the top of your to-do list is a sure way to make sure you never get it done. Break down the work into smaller and smaller chunks until you have specific tasks that can be accomplished in a few hours or less: Sketch a wireframe, outline an introduction for the homepage video, etc. That’s how you set goals and actually succeed in crossing them off your list.

Stop multi-tasking. No, seriously—stop. Switching from task to task quickly does not work. In fact, changing tasks more than 10 times in a day makes you dumber than being stoned. When you’re stoned, your IQ drops by five points. When you multitask, it drops by an average of 10 points, 15 for men, five for women (yes, men are three times as bad at multitasking than women).

Be militant about eliminating distractions. Lock your door, put a sign up, turn off your phone, texts, email, and instant messaging. In fact, if you know you may sneak a peek at your email, set it to offline mode, or even turn off your Internet connection. Go to a quiet area and focus on completing one task.

Schedule your email. Pick two or three times during the day when you’re going to use your email. Checking your email constantly throughout the day creates a ton of noise and kills your productivity.

Use the phone. Email isn’t meant for conversations. Don’t reply more than twice to an email. Pick up the phone instead.

Work on your own agenda. Don’t let something else set your day. Most people go right to their emails and start freaking out. You will end up at inbox-zero, but accomplish nothing. After you wake up, drink water so you rehydrate, eat a good breakfast to replenish your glucose, then set prioritized goals for the rest of your day.

Work in 60 to 90 minute intervals. Your brain uses up more glucose than any other bodily activity. Typically you will have spent most of it after 60-90 minutes. (That’s why you feel so burned out after super long meetings.) So take a break: Get up, go for a walk, have a snack, do something completely different to recharge. And yes, that means you need an extra hour for breaks, not including lunch, so if you’re required to get eight hours of work done each day, plan to be there for 9.5-10 hours.

More good food for the “wordstruck…” PARAPROSDOKIANS:

(Winston Churchill loved them!)

I had to look up “paraprosdokian”. Here is the definition:

“Figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected; frequently used in a humorous situation.” “Where there’s a will, I want to be in it,” is a type of paraprosdokian.

1. Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

2. The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it’s still on my list.

3. Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

4. If I agreed with you, we’d both be wrong.

5. We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public.

6. War does not determine who is right – only who is left..

7. Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

8. Evening news is where they begin with ‘Good Evening,’ and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t.

9. To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.

10. A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a train stops. On my desk, I have a work station.

11. I thought I wanted a career. Turns out I just wanted paychecks.

12. Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says, ‘In case of emergency, notify:’ I put ‘DOCTOR.’

13. I didn’t say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.

14. Women will never be equal to men until they can walk down the street with a bald head and a beer gut, and still think they are sexy.

15. Behind every successful man is his woman. Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.

16. A clear conscience is the sign of a fuzzy memory.

17. You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.

18. Money can’t buy happiness, but it sure makes misery easier to live with.

19. There’s a fine line between cuddling and holding someone down so they can’t get away.

20. I used to be indecisive. Now I’m not so sure.

21. You’re never too old to learn something stupid.

22. To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.

23. Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.

24. Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

25. Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.

My personal favorite is: Pardon me for talking while you were interrupting.

Life Lessons in the Arts
We have all heard of art for arts sake, but are there life lessons to be learned from a study of the arts?

According to Elliot Eisner, professor of education and art at Stanford University, there are several. In his article, “10 Lessons the Arts Teach” in youngARTS magazine he discusses what else you can learn from living an artists life.

1 The arts emphasize the importance of how things interact with each other rather than what is right or wrong.
2 The arts teach that problems can have several solutions that are equally valid.
3 The arts promote having multiple perspectives.
4 The arts reveal that goals and purposes are seldom final, but rather they change and develop over time.
5 The arts prove that certain emotions transcend language and words.
6 The arts teach the importance of small details.
7 The arts teach how to create within parameters.
8 The arts teach expression without saying anything.
9 The arts allow us to explore things we could not otherwise do.
10 An arts education shows the importance of art in our society.

Darin L. Jolliffe-Haas

Carillon Park… The Miami Valley’s own version of Greenfield Village & Henry Ford Museum!

Morning with Santa Header
December 17 | 9:00 am – 11:30 am at Carillon Historical Park

Visit Carillon Park for a Morning with Santa!
Open House is from 9:00 am to 11:30 am.
Ride the Carousel of Dayton Innovation

Tour the new Heritage Center
Listen to holiday stories
Bring your camera for pictures with Santa
Crafts and holiday music playing
Continental breakfast

$12 per person, children under 2 are free. To make reservations, email, or call 937-293-2841 ext. 106

Connect a Million Minds Program
December 13 | 3:30 pm

Harmuth Printing 101
– Visit the only fully operating 1930s letterpress printing shop in a museum anywhere in the United States! Students will enjoy the chance to learn the printing trade firsthand by completing tasks such as setting type, preparing printing surfaces, composing, editing and printing an original line of type and more. Along the way, students will learn of Dayton’s role as a leader of the nation’s printing industry during the 1930s.

For more information on this free program please call
937-293-2841, or visit

Presented by:
Time Warner Logo

Holiday Shopping at the Museum Store

A holiday shopping destination! Looking for a special gift this season? The Carillon Historical Park Museum Store offers a variety of quality items at a wide range of prices. Choose from books, historical toys, ornaments, sterling silver jewelry and so much more.

Visit the Museum Store during regular park hours
Monday – Saturday, 9:30 am – 5:00 pm
Sunday, 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm

Books From the Museum Store
Make Perfect Gifts!

Stop by our gift shop and see all of the exciting inventory we have to celebrate Dayton. Make sure you don’t miss the two new books we now carry exclusively, that are perfect for holiday giving.

“Gem City Jewels II” is a sequel to the successful “Gem City Jewels” introduced in the Fall of 2009. Full of interesting and unique facts this book is written by Curt Dalton. He has spent numerous hours researching the wonderful history of Dayton and this book showcases many amazing true stories from our past.

“Cooking the Wright Way” written by Melba Hunt and first published in 1998. Out of print for over a decade we are freshly stocked with new copies for sale. This book provides a unique profile of the Wright family from the aspect of food. Filled with family history, photos and wonderful recipes that were prepared in their home. This book is a treasure!

For more information, please visit the Museum Store or call 937-293-2841

Armco 2011 Ornament2011 Commemorative Ornament

Artist Melanie Haislip has painted three unique versions of the Carousel of Dayton Innovation, Dayton History’s 2011 Commemorative Ornament. You will be impressed by her attention to details, color, and realism. Ornaments are available for purchase in the Museum Store for $40 each.

Lincoln Tag 2
The Lincoln Society of Dayton announces the postponement of the December 4th program at the Patterson Homestead to January 8th, 2012. You are invited to come at 2:00 pm on January 8th to enjoy another DVD series presented by Professor Allan Guelzo. This will be followed by comments by Bob Johnson on the topic of Lincoln’s Triumph. Start the New Year with a resolution not to miss a single program presented by the Lincoln Society of Dayton!!
For more information
please call Maribeth
Graham at 434-7414
2012 calendar
Dayton History 2012 Calendar
The Dayton History 2012 calendar is now available! Be up to date with this beautiful calendar containing historic photos of Dayton and the famous people who made Dayton. Also learn about some of Dayton’s most important events and the date they took place. Get your Calendar in the Dayton History Museum Store today!
Triangels Merch
Dayton Triangles T-Shirts & Hats
The Dayton Triangles – one of the initial 11 teams in the NFL – played the league’s first ever game at Triangle Park in 1920. A new line of T-shirts and ball caps commemorating the team is available in the Museum Store at Carillon Park!
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Carillon Historical Park | 1000 Carillon Blvd. | Dayton, OH 45409 | 937-293-2841 |


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This morning I happened to view Matt Lauer’s TODAY SHOW interview/reunion with the actors portraying the family from THE WALTONS.  It was refreshing and uplifting to see these familiar, albeit, older faces.  I found myself smiling throughout the interview as though the seven children and Mama Walton were seated right before me.

What a wonderful gift they offered this morning.

As I strolled through my well-rehearsed morning events of letting dogs out to potty, feeding dogs, giving a dog an insulin shot, pouring my coffee, reading my emails, etc., I kept thinking about THE WALTONS.  When I was a child there were two to three television programs on every night that I could not wait to see.  Forty years later, I generally find myself eager to watch ONCE UPON A TIME on Sunday evenings, and THE MIDDLE and MODERN FAMILY on Wednesdays.  That is it.  Nothing else really appeals to me.  Grant it, that allows more time to spend with my son doing homework, or other time-quality items, but I am still a little sad that my son cannot enjoy television the way I did in my youth.

What is more, we watched these television programs as a family.  This is how we do it in The Haasienda, as well.  As noted this morning by Matt Lauer to the WALTONS actors, “You sat down to dinner together.”  And yes, we sit down to dinner together in this house.

My mother did it that way, as did her parents.

Ma & Pa Ingalls did it that way.

Mama & Daddy Walton did it that way.

Mom & Dad Brady did it that way (but, damned if they didn’t have a maid serving their dinners!)

What was good enough for Mother, the Ingalls, the Waltons, the Bradys and countless other TV families is good enough for my family!

The families of the 1970’s had their own share of dysfunction, but it was all about the way they minimaliszed their dysfunction rather than highlighting it.  Grant it, there were those wonderful sitcoms, ALL IN THE FAMILY and THE JEFFERSONS, along with others, that highlighted their dysfunction, but in the end, their values always surfaced.  They also primed their dysfunction to be the comedic focus for each episode.  With the hideous reality programs, which I deplore, there is little resolution but plenty of notification that more sophomoric drama is to come.

I feel blessed to have grown up in an era where television was more value-centered, and less dysfunction-driven.  Those episodes, scenes, characters and theme songs are still with me today.

Why else would I take the time to blog about them when I should be cleaning the bathroom, doing laundry, mopping puppy-tracked floors, etc.?

From Fairmont High School’s Band Director, Michael Berning…

Remember – if you buy a mattress, use Quintin’s name as a reference. The proceeds will go toward his 2012 Marching Band account ($540) and his current winter percussion account ($490).

Feel free to spread the word with your friends and family! I did!

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December 2011
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