Life

Tie Your Roots

A year after my mother’s death, angels came in the form of women who were doing a service project for foster youth.  I asked about their organization, and somehow I could hear my mother tell me to join.  I could also help Filipinos in Hawaii. I’ve been with the organization ten years.

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The women helped me to rediscover my culture.  I learned how to cook pancit and adobo a little bit better.  I learned how to make a parol and sing Tagalog songs.My mother would have been happy that I connected with people that look like me and appreciate our culture.

This year the Filipino Women’s League elected me to the Vice Presidency position, and I am also the membership chair. I invite anyone to join.  We have a diverse group of women that appreciate and celebrate the Filipino culture. You don’t have to be Filipino to join.

The League has cultural education through dance and song, we have service projects throughout the year, and we offer scholarships.  We get together once a month and review upcoming events and projects.  We also have camaraderie and connection.

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The League has been around almost 50 years.  I have learned so much about leadership, facilitation, and valuing members through this organization and many other organizations like FWL.  When you join a service organization, you learn so much about people and yourself.  I learned how to tie to my roots.  How do you tie to yours?

Next blog: Almost half a century

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business, design, Life

Closeups and Cameras

I don’t feel like I am ready to do a photo shoot.  I feel vulnerable in front of a camera.  Despite my confidence on stage when I speak or when I conduct training with a group my old demons of being a teenager comes out.

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The sad story of a girl with a disability never had dates, never went to the prom, didn’t deserve to have straight teeth – “Who would want to marry or even date her?” I was constantly bullied in the shadows or whispers.

When someone in college said I was pretty, I gravitated towards that and was taken advantage of again and again and again. I finally let go of all that stress on the day I was married. No more being judged, no more being criticized but it didn’t stop. The criticisms never end because the voices from the past keep coming back like a ghost.

Now I look at my wrinkles and my fat and thank God for Photoshop. Then again, should I show you what I look like with all my flaws?  I’m already teetering on one leg with crutches in front of you.

Despite all of my flaws, I am content.  I am in a career I love.  I have jewelry and a clothing business that gives back to families and nonprofits. I love my husband, kids, dog, house, church, community (Mililani), networking groups (especially BNI), clients, etc.  I have so much to be grateful for.  That may show up in the photos and that may not.  I know that this contentment is in my heart.

If you have a chance, please check out my jewelry boutique. https://www.chloeandisabel.com/boutique/vince

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I’m only a $1000 away from earning a trip to Paris.  I’ve never been out of the country. You can help me get to Paris.  Share my page and of course purchasing any jewelry pieces.  Think of Valentine’s Day!

The sales of jewelry, clothing, training, or coaching helps to keep this contentment. Thank you so much for your support and purchase!

Next blog: Tie Your Roots

Life

False Alarm and Awareness

Saturday’s wake up call for a ballistic missile attack was jarring for many of us in Hawaii and loved ones in the mainland and other countries.  I picked up my phone and said a short prayer, “Lord, if this is real, please help me to help people. You have given me so many gifts and experiences.  I am ready.”

My second action was to check social media and the tv. I didn’t hear the sirens. I am from Kauai, and we are used to sirens in an emergency. My son came down the stairs and his little-worried face asked if we saw the alert.  I told him not to worry, and both my husband and I thought it was a hoax or a mistake.

Being from Kauai, we are used to disasters and both my parents grew up in the Philippines when the Japanese invaded their country.  I think they prepared us well.

I have too many first aid kits.  I think we have enough food for two weeks. I do two things before a disaster. I fill up the tubs with water and do the laundry.  My kids and husband make fun of me when I do both things every time I hear a siren.  I know which room to go to if a bomb hits the islands.

I am an Americorp member from 1992, and we created the first Foodbank on Kauai after Hurricane Iniki. I know how to set up food pantries and shelters.  I know how to develop systems for separated family members. Yes, I’m a little crazy, I look at systems to find lost pets after a disaster.

For a split second, my thought was, well…ground zero could be where I’m sitting and what good would that be? This gave me a sense of heightened awareness, and I reflected on my life. I hope I served as much as I could with all that I could.

Next blog: Photo shoot

 

business, Life

Intention

I wanted to make sure I thanked everyone for following my business FB: https://www.facebook.com/bambooshoot.co/.

Thank you to clients for trusting me to coach and train you on change and growth.  Finally,  thank you fashionistas for your purchases.  Kokoon has exciting news for 2018; http://www.kokoon.net/Vince-Abramo. Also, the next jewelry pop up will go to help a family that lost their father while snorkeling in Maui: http://www.chloeandisabel.com/boutique/vince/roesel-family-fund-0

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My intention this year is to make sure I thank everyone that are supporters of my new adventure. We know that at the beginning of the year everyone has their best intentions to meet a goal. Goals may be to organize your home, or to lose weight, or to stick to a budget.  With all of these good and purposeful intentions, I wondered how many of us write those goals down and are quickly forgotten in several weeks. We also tend to write the same goals every year.

I have my clients write their dreams.  This is the first step into intention. Working with many people at the beginning of this year and having them write their intentions, helped me think and write my own.  Here are my goals:

  1. Remember to thank people for their support
  2. Add value to people to carry out their intentions
  3. Take time to take care of myself, my family, and my community

Take that first step. Write your intentions here. Start on your goals today.  I’m here to help you accomplish what you have been writing every year.

business, Life

One Foot in Front of No Other

Has anyone heard the song “One Foot” by Walk The Moon? http://www.walkthemoonband.com/#music-and-video-page

I changed the lyrics just a little to relate it to my situation.  I love the lyrics….  The song popped up while I was deciding to leave a job that sucked the life out of me and struggling to create a business from nothing.

I sing it to myself when I feel down or when I have that win for the day.  I love to pull a James Corden Carpool Karaoke session in my car.  You will see me on the H1 belting out the song. I have another song to set me up for speaking engagements.  That’s for another blog, another day.

My wonderful husband, Nick, has helped me to start this journey to begin to build this business.  He has been so incredibly supportive and continued to be my rock. All we have is each other. He’s got my back through this wilderness.

I don’t know what it’s like to have one foot in front of the other. I’ve had a prosthetic leg three times in my life and hated each one of them.  I don’t have one now because the entire prosthetic attaches to my body.  I don’t have a left hip and the brace would come up to my chest.  Just picture a tiny little Filipino girl carrying around a clunky, hot, itchy, and incredibly heavy object. The combination of an active person and a 30 lb. weight strapped to you does not make a great combination. I had to swing my whole body to get the leg to move an inch. Sometimes I took 30 minutes to a class that would normally take 5 minutes. I hope that answers why I don’t wear a prosthetic leg.

My life on my own terms. The phrase one foot in front of no other forces me to keep moving.  I will walk with my crutches, hop, or wheel my way forward. I will get there one foot in front of no other.