Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pint-size giants...

The bon mots and common sense wisdom spouted by small children can make them seem like mini-Buddhas to adults. Their miniature statures and simplistic worldviews can sometimes mask the fact little children are capable of doing big things.

Ten year-old Joey McGuire is perhaps the youngest successful CEO I've ever heard of. Inspired by one episode of "The Celebrity Apprentice", McGuire started not one but two businesses. He runs a shoe-shine venture that employs three part-time people, pays for his cell phone AND has allowed him to save $500 for college so far. Not content with the corporate world, McGuire is a budding media mogul as well. He writes and produces his own super-local news gazette. The original article on McGuire in the Chicago Sun-Times caught "The Donald's" eye, and while in town on business Donald Trump took time out to meet with the little boy he inspired.

This next story from AOL is definite evidence that children hear and digest what you say, even if you think it's over their heads. After her father accidentally took an incompatible combination of medicines at home, three year-old Alesaundra Tafoya toddled two blocks to the fire station to tell the firemen her father was "frozen". The reason she knew to do such a thing? Her parents had pointed out the fire house as a place to go in an emergency...

Nine year-old Logan Hearn took similar initiative when his mother found his younger brother floating face down in the family's backyard pool. According to, two year-old Brendan had sneaked outside and fallen in. When mom Tabitha tried to do CPR while on the phone with 911, Logan realized his mother was doing it wrong. He stepped in, used his life guard training skills and saved his little brother.

(Photo courtesy of the Chicago Sun-Times)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Happy Anniversary!

Hi...I didn't manage a post yesterday (sorry about that) as I spent the day in the kitchen crafting my parents' anniversary cake - 10 layers of Smith Island cake goodness sandwiched with strawberry mousseline buttercream and frosted with chocolate buttercream.

But I will return next week with a new post full of fun, good news. :) Until then!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A world of good...

In an effort to counter-balance all the bad news from around the world of late (mudslides, earthquakes, floods, etc.), I've found three good news stories that span the globe.

MSNBC reported on "Crazy Bake", uniquely located in the Beijing Chaoyang District Mental Health Service Center. Six patients work with one instructor to churn out loaves of bread and bagels which are sold to area residents. The bakery was formed five years ago by two foreign volunteers who had also started an organic farm project. The bakers work every Friday to produce their wares; originally begun as a way to provide structure and activities for patients, all six workers have shown marked improvement in their health and are now able to live in assisted living facilities off of the health center's campus.

London's Daily Telegraph found a glimmer of hope amidst the tragedy literally flowing through Pakistan. Nearly 1600 people have died in the massive flooding there, but a mother and grandmother to 30, Zainab Bibi, was saved from flood waters by, of all things, her cow. Sleeping in the farmyard, the waters picked Bibi up and carried her away, but from out of nowhere, Bhoori the cow floated up beside her. The two were carried along until they found higher ground.

MSNBC also has this last story - hope for Haitians. The island nation is still suffering from the effects of that devastating earthquake this past January. But the LA Galaxy and the Tony Sanneh Foundation brought smiles back to the faces of some 14 and 15 year-old boys through the world's game. A Haitian boys team was brought to Minnesota to participate in the largest youth soccer tournament in the country. Welcomed into host families, the boys were able to find happiness both on and off the pitch.

(Photo courtesy of MSNBC)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Faster than a speeding bullet...

When you hear the word "hero", what immediately springs to mind? A figure in a military uniform, standing strong against the enemy? A man in a cape and tights, ready to take on the world with super-human powers? Well, today's post has both of those with a healthy dash of the world's most un-disgruntled postman thrown in there. Although "Un-Disgruntled Postman" sounds more like a band name then a member of the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen...

CBS News told the story of a group of heroes recently reunited after a stint in Iraq. However, this isn't your usual Army buddy story. National Guardsman Chris Duke befriended three Afghan mutts during his last tour of duty. But the dogs did a whole lot more than help him fend off homesickness. Serena, Rufus and Target set off a ruckus and attacked a suicide bomber when he tried to break into the barracks one night last February. Serena had to be be put down after suffering severe injuries, but Rufus and Target were nursed back to health and received tickets state-side to be reunited with Duke.

Asylum reported on the real-life rescue of a family by Superman. Well, a Superman comic, anyway. After the bank foreclosed on an anonymous family, it began to pack up its belongings for the move. Buried in the basement was an original Action Comics #1 issue - the first appearance of the Man of Steel. Expected to fetch $250,000 at auction, the family will now be able to keep the home which they have had since the 1950s.

And finally, the postal service has had its share of poor press with bankruptcy looming and unhappy employees - the latter of which inspired the phrase "going postal." But Keith McVey, a postal worker in Akron, Ohio, is both a model employee and human being. Over the last 20 years, McVey has saved three lives while on his route and each time, he has simply continued on with his day afterwards and delivered the mail. According to MSNBC, the most recent example of his derring-do was last week when he performed CPR on a man who wasn't breathing and didn't have a pulse. Improbably, the man came to before the ambulance arrived.

(Photo courtesy of