Donna Ruley

Donna Ruley

As we embark on the start of 2014, there’s something to be said about “beginnings”.

The word stirs different emotions and can easily take on different forms depending on its usage.  It can bring delight to a family with the birth of their first child.  Starting a family together is a precious “beginning” in this thing we call the circle of life.  It can set the stage for a theatre production. The FIRST ACT. It prepares us for what is to come. This “beginning”  is often used to establish the identity of the cast so you can follow the plot.  For our hopeless romantics “the beginning” is an engagement announcement that symbolically allows for the planning of a wedding and publically launches  their life together as a couple.  What God has joined together, let no man divide.  If you are a reader of the bible, you think of it’s first book, Genesis.  “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.”

There are many significant “beginnings” to speak of.  The start of this year serves up a full menu of them to get women motivated, and in the words of Lisa Hammond & BJ Gallagher, ” put oil in our lamps.”  Join me as we nibble on a few.
The Appetizers
These small plates will stimulate your appetite for better self care.  They are your starter first course.
What do you need to let go of? Where have you stored your treasure.
What have your mistakes taught you? What challenges have you yet to overcome?
Now…… are you ready for the Entrée?
Are you still making promises to yourself serving up a whole lot of gravy smothering
the true flavor of what you want to do?
Have you seriously taken steps to heal a situation or have you left it frying and overcooked?
Maybe you are on simmer….stuck on a low flame of procrastination.  Do you think  it’s time to turn up the heat?
Ahh…the Dessert
Did I hear you say you were saving the best for last. …….
This is about “beginnings”. So check out the menu.  Are you exploring all your options? Nothing so easy as having to choose between vanilla, chocolate and strawberry ice cream.
Are you willing to keep it basic vanilla with nothing added. Low key, with very little imagination.
Or is your swagger like the rich decadence  of chocolate, full of flavor and excitement.
Or maybe you are a strawberry kind of girl, the one that takes vanilla to another level, a little fruity, and  bursting with unpredictability.  Did you know some people eat their dessert first? Yes at the beginning!

I’ll  end the way I began. As we embark on the start of 2014, take the time to insist on what serves you best. Begin this New Year with expectation.   Relish in a fresh start.  Anticipate the tasteful joy of every bite. Doesn’t matter if it’s a burger and fries, comes on a platter or plate,  or an elegant multi- course meal. Savor every bite. Your best is yet to come. Delight, prepare, plan, launch, create.

After all, “It’s only the beginning!”

Donna G. Ruley is the Executive Director of Zion Teenshop and has held this position since 1998. She became involved with the chapter as a parent volunteer when her daughter Latanya, now a Zion Teenshop alumna, joined. Latanya serves as the chapter’s Community Service Director and president of the Teenshop Alumnae Club. Donna works as an Executive Assistant at KenCrest Services and also serves as a Key Connector for the agency. KenCrest is a non-profit human services agency providing supports and services for adults and children with developmental disabilities in the Delaware Valley, Delaware State and Connecticut. KenCrest also offers Early Intervention, Head Start, Child Care, Pre-K Counts and residential services for medically fragile children.