Reflection of a week in review, behind the scenes

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Many times, in writing an article, there is much more going on behind the scenes that cannot be written . Here are a few things that made an impact, not only in the community, but also on me.

Ms. Smarty Plants 

Many times, in writing an article, there is much more going on behind the scenes that cannot be written . Here are a few things that made an impact, not only in the community, but also on me.

Ms. Smarty Plants 

My article on the reception for the sponsors and volunteers for the The Water Conservation Garden and Ms. Smarty Plants (aka Pam Meisner) falls very short in capturing the spirit of the evening. I previously had a chance to walk through the garden and it is peaceful, lovely and educational, but I had no idea of the impact of this program. Nothing trumped the spirit of Ms. Smarty Plants, but the abundance of gratitude and respect from the community of this internationally recognized program, impacts the children, educators and the community she works with every day.

It was an evening full of laughter, hugs and tears as person after person stood and told what impact she had on students, families and schools. One of my favorites was her work with an elementary school that decided that the school grounds needed landscaping to meet the drought conditions of our local environment. It was the children that made this happen, and with her guidance it all began with the kids writing letters to the principle on how they needed a drip irrigation system in order to begin the project. This was met with overwhelming support from the school and community who donated time, money and materials to create an environmentally friendly campus.

Most touching, was the end, when she gave flowers and thanked the people that helped make her program a success. Inside that fighting spirit, lays a heart of gold that was clearly shown through the tears she shed as she said thank you to each and every one of them. My last words to her were, “I’ll be back to spend the day with you and learn more.” And that is a promise I plan to keep.

Stash and Dash Fundraiser

Nothing short of a fantastic morning of fun. First, I was impressed with the amount of children, parents, teachers and community involved. Standing on the inside of the track at the first corner of the run, I was shocked while looking through the lens of the camera when I realized that hundreds of kindergarten children were headed straight towards me, with many of them having no regard for the lines of the track. It was a head on collision with what seemed at the time, a herd of stampeding horses. But these kids ran their little legs and hearts out, laughing, screaming and having the fun that I remember as a child. 

The enthusiasm from everyone was contagious and it was visible that everyone there loved and supported this school. And after looking at its remarkable programs, I can easily see why. They have the future of these young students at the heart, which they will carry on hopefully to a better future.

El Cajon City Council

Last week’s meeting was interesting and I wish Mayor Bill Wells the best in his new appointment. Public comment is always my favorite, and in the beginning, the several Chaldeans that stood up and spoke in defense of former mayor Mark Lewis was touching. Many speakers spoke about how diversity is needed in the city and that many of them feel under-represented. It is democracy in action, and with some very good points, they said El Cajon needed to be like other cities in the county, with women mayors, different ethnicities and sexual orientations representing the people. It is food for thought for the council as it makes its decision on who fills the vacant council seat. Hopefully, as a body, they will listen to the voice of their constituents.

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