Thank you Sysco

•November 25, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Today I celebrate 15 amazing years working for Sysco. In light of the holiday season, I want to give Thanks for all that Sysco has done for me.

I have been given countless opportunities over these years to choose my path and develop both personally and professionally. I have honed my craft within the security of its wall, and have been given the support I needed to learn from the mistakes that I have made. I have utilized the many resources at my disposal to educate myself and further my career.  For this, I give Thanks.

During my tenure I have experienced life and loss, love and heartache, sickness and health. Sysco has been there throughout it all, supporting me with the benefits it provides or the support of its leadership. I have been able to provide for my family and the ones I love under Sysco’s employ. I have helped those in need, and been given the time when I needed it most. For this, I give Thanks.

With the living I have earned at Sysco I have been able to realize many dreams. I have owned a home and car, been able to travel, and explored countless of my nerdy hobbies (currently I’m on a board game kick). I have kept food on the table, and clothes on our backs. I have even been able to put a little away for a rainy day, and save for my retirement (only 25 years to go :-)). For this, I give Thanks.

Sysco is merely a sum of its parts, and those parts are its people. The ever turning cogs that keep this huge machine working day after day. It is through their hard work, dedication and sacrifice that we are all able to service our customers, and feed all the families that their efforts provide. Long ago I have lost the distinction between my Sysco family and my own….the love is the same. I have learned so much from the amazing people that I have encountered along my journey and for this, I give Thanks.

Economies ebb and flow, ventures sometime fail to come to fruition, and attrition is often a difficult necessity to keep a company healthy. Through difficult times, it is easy to lose sight of all the things that are going right as we seem to focus on what has gone wrong. I continue to hold much faith in this company, and in those who lead us bravely into an unknown future. Like the many people it employs, Sysco is a survivor. For this, I give Thanks.

Thank you all, and Happy Holidays!!  


Coop’s Guidelines for Surviving a breakup

•April 1, 2015 • Leave a Comment


You just went through a traumatic breakup. Your heart feels broken, you haven’t been sleeping, your appetite has changed, and you can’t stop thinking about your ex and ways to get them back. You feel miserable and it’s hard to even think about a time when you’ll be happy again. You may feel alone, but you are not alone in how you feel. Many others have experienced this type of loss and have felt your pain. The good news is that there is a light at the end of your tunnel of misery, and No, that light is not a train. In truth, time is the only real healer of your wounds. The catch is that you need to follow some guidelines to make the healing time go by faster.

  1. NO CONTACT – The No Contact rule is designed to protect you so that you can heal and, quite frankly, not do something stupid. There needs to be a “cooling” off period after a breakup to prevent you from bombarding your Ex with an onslaught of love professions or begging to get back together. At this stage it will only drive your Ex further away and make them more sure of the decision to break up. Plus you may come off needy and pathetic… offense. When you break this rule the healing time becomes longer and you will only experience a more prolonged pain. Unless you are a masochist, you really need time to heal and let the pain subside. How long should you go No Contact? While it will be hard for you to accept right now, 60 days is what I recommend. It is the right amount of time for you to get hold of your emotional state before even attempting to contact your Ex. More than likely your desire to contact them after this period of time will have subsided, permitting that you have followed most of the guidelines below:
    1. Unfollow or Unfriend on Facebook. Social media is dangerous in breakups. Avoid it at all costs, like a fat guy avoids a treadmill (insensitive?…sorry) . No looking at Facebook to see the last time they were online, don’t follow them on Twitter or Instagram. Nothing…it only makes it harder.
    1. Delete contact on your phone or change the name to something that makes you feel better like “NOT Worth It” or “Off Limits”. Remove the picture as well. I would also recommend deleting all of your past Text conversations….I know this may be hard but you might be tempted to read it.
    1. Delete email addresses and old email from all email accounts. Again, you may be tempted to email them and this makes it a lot harder to do so.
    1. Don’t frequent any places you know they go in the hopes of running into them. Don’t drive by their work, their house, or on the same roads you know they travel.
    1. Beware the drunken call or text. This is why deleting the contact and removing from social media can be so important in these moments of weakness.
    1. Create a Lifeline. This is a person you call when you feel like making contact. Let this person talk you off the ledge and talk some sense into you.
    1. Don’t ask questions from mutual friends or their family about your Ex. You probably won’t like what you hear. As a matter of fact, you should probably cut off all ties with your Ex’s family and friends. While this can be difficult because you may have a relationship with them, it will be very hard for you not to ask questions about your Ex and thereby staying connected to them and slowing down your healing process. Once you are in a better place, you can consider picking up those relationships again in a small way but you MUST avoid bringing up the Ex in conversation so as to not relapse your recovery. (This sounds a little like coaching for drug addiction, but that’s probably because there are a lot of similarities).
    1. Remind yourself over and over again that if they really wanted to talk to you, they would call. There is no magical thing you can say to make them want you back. You can’t guilt them or make them take pity on you into taking you back. Would you really want them back under those circumstances anyway? As a matter of fact, continued calling and texting will drive them further away and create more anger and frustration towards you. This winds up with them labeling you as a stalker, or telling people you are crazy and can’t get over them. It gives them a sense of power over you and this is not a power you want to give them the satisfaction of having.
  1. See Rule One – It’s that important
  1. Scrub all traces of your Ex from your life
    1. Get any pictures off your phone, computer or removed from your house where you might see them. Hell, throw the whole phone away if you have to and get a new one. Your phone is probably in need of an upgrade anyway.
    1. Put any keepsakes, notes, clothing, toiletries in a box away from view…or burn in a fiery blaze of glory (my preference)
    1. Don’t frequent the same restaurants or any places you went.
    1. Avoid common friends and talking to their family, at least for a while.
    1. Delete old emails, texts, voicemails or any digital content you may have. Remove anything from your computer and store on a thumb drive if you insist on keeping it.
    1. Unfollow or Unfriend on Facebook and other social media- This one is worth saying twice.
  1. Allow yourself to go through the stages of Loss .
    1. Denial – Yes, It’s over. It’s hard to believe it’s true, but it is. “But what about all that talk of the future…things we were going to do, places we were going to go, the house we were going to buy?” I know, it’s hard to accept that none of those things will happen, regardless of what was once said. The hardest part is realizing that those things are not true anymore. Sometimes the reality of what people want and the dream they have in their heads are not the same. When they make this realization, the relationship is usually over.
    1. Pain and Guilt – I’m not going to lie, this phase really sucks. While it won’t last forever, it sure as hell feels like it will. You need to allow yourself to fully feel the pain, don’t put it off or try to escape it with drugs, alcohol, or chocolate. Your work may suffer, you may over or under eat, it will take every bit of energy you have to get out of bed. You’ll want to sleep, but you won’t want to be alone. Unfortunately, there really is no comfort to be found in this stage.  To make matters worse, you will be obsessing over things you think you did wrong to lead you to this, which will only add Guilt to this self-deprecating mix. You will probably be beating yourself up so badly every inch of you will be broken and bruised. All I can tell you is the only way out of this stage is through it. You will have to just endure, but know that you do not suffer needlessly. It is this pain and endurance that will make you stronger later.
    1. Anger and Bargaining – At some point pain will give way to anger. Anger is such a powerful emotion, and it can give you a false sense of strength. It is easier to hate or be angry with your Ex than to love them or be understanding of the situation. Go ahead and let yourself feel the anger, but do not dwell here as it will only prolong you from being able to let go and move on. If you let anger and hate take up residence in your heart, it will only darken your soul and make it difficult to have a successful relationship later. My advice is to Forgive….forgive yourself and your Ex for what happened. Appreciate that you both did the best you could and things don’t always work out. We are all just human after all. So, take down the dart board with their face on it, the voodoo doll needs to go in the trash, and the punching bag wearing their t-shirt?….that one you can keep, it’s good exercise.  In this stage you may also start bargaining with the powers that be to bring your Ex back. Just so we’re clear, there is no magic that can help you, no prayer you can say, and no superpower you posses that can make your Ex want you back. Oh, and if you’ve read ‘The Secret’, that shit won’t work either.
    1. Depression – In this stage you will feel the full impact of what you have lost. You will feel a calm sadness, and will spend time in quiet reflection. This may frustrate your friends as they think you should be over it, they will want to cheer you up or tell you to be happy. They’ll say things like, “Can’t you just be happy and get over this?”. You’ll probably want to throat punch them when they say this, but know it’s only because they care.  My advice is to give yourself the time you need as putting this off will only manifest itself later in other ways. ***Note-If this stage lasts longer than three weeks you may want to see a therapist and get some really good happy pills. Some Ambien wouldn’t hurt either as I know you are probably not sleeping***
    1. Acceptance, and Hope – In this stage you have come to terms with the loss. You are not necessarily happy in this stage, but you have a glimmer of hope for the future. You may have started planning things again, set some short term goals, maybe even planned a trip.  You might have started singing in the shower again, or dancing in the mirror. You are probably smiling and laughing a little easier, and have a general feeling of well being. You have stopped living in small compartments of time and are leading a fuller life.
  1. Spend time with friends and people who love you. You will feel the need to talk about what has happened, which is totally normal. And you should vent it out, but also give yourself a time limit on when the venting has to stop. It shouldn’t be three months after a breakup and you’re still talking about it….three weeks is even long. Beware any hope that people may give you by saying things like “I’m sure they’ll call” or “I’m sure you’ll get back together”. They say this to make you feel better, not necessarily because they believe it. Actually, in a lot of instances, your friends or family are not surprised by the breakup. Since their view of your relationship has been somewhat objective, they probably saw the signs and problems more clearly and earlier on.
  1. Start a new routine by finding things to do. It is important to stay busy with things that keep your mind engaged.
    1. Hobby – like making paper mache Star Wars figures, or bug collecting. What? People do it…don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. Point is, do something.
    1. Learn a new language – Seriously, this can be helpful and will keep your mind busy. Do you have a dream of going to Italy someday? Learn Italian as a first step on your way to that dream. Rosetta Stone would be my software of choice.
    1. Place to donate your time – Humane Society, Senior Home, Homeless Shelter, Boys and Girls club. Helping others will give you perspective and make you feel good.
    1. Take a class – Cooking, boxing, martial arts, Interpretive dance, synchronized swimming….anything to keep your mind engaged.
    1. Reading – Any book would be good as they keep your mind distracted, but I personally like to read self help/spiritual based books in these situations. With that, I would highly recommend “The Four Agreements” by Don Miguel Ruiz. This book had a very positive impact on my life as it will teach you four valuable rules/philosophies to live your life by:
      1. Be Impeccable
      1. Don’t take it personally
      1. Don’t make assumptions
      2. Always do your best
    1. Video Games – Seriously…try them, they’re more fun than you’d think. I’ve wasted away days of my life on Candy Crush and Farm Heroes Saga.
    1. The Gym (my favorite) – The chemical release of endorphin’s in the brain will actually help make you feel better and give you a sense of well being. Combined with a good diet this is a prescription for self medication.
    2. Keep a Journal or Write a Blog….like this one :). Getting things out on paper is a proven way to relieve your mind of the burden of thinking about it. Just vomit all your thoughts out and you’ll start to feel better. It works.
  1. There is no such thing as Closure. – You hear this a lot after breakups where someone is always saying they want closure. They just want to know why it ended, what they could have done different, or any other nugget of information that will help them understand. First, if you are looking to talk to your ex to get closure just know that what you are really looking for is any signs that they want to get back together. You may think that just by them seeing you it will make them recognize their mistake and magically make them want you again. Second, any answers or reasons they may give you will only lead to more questions, which will then leave you again without closure. You see how this can lead to a never ending cycle of closure seeking? My advice here is to just let it go and look forward. It doesn’t matter what happened. You will never understand what goes on in someone else’s brain, and my advice is not to try. Focus on your future and leave the past in the past.
  1. Spend Time Alone and avoid the rebound . You need to be comfortable in your own skin, and spending time alone is a way to ensure this. You need to learn how to be happy on your own again before you can be happy in a relationship. While some of our instincts may tell us to jump into another relationship, use caution here. If it is feeling forced in any way, it probably is. You will know when you are ready when the right person comes along where you can be yourself and not compromise. You also don’t want to do to someone else what your Ex did to you. Finding comfort in someone else just because you are lonely and hurt is a selfish and douchey thing to do.

Hang in there my friend. I know you are hurting right now but I promise it will get better. Be patient and give yourself time to heal. You will come out on the other end of this a stronger, and more prepared for what lies ahead.

Motivational Quotes:

  • “Never chase love, affection, or attention. If it isn’t given freely by another person, it isn’t worth having.”
  • “Never put the key to your happiness in someone else’s pocket”
  • “If life can remove someone you never dreamed of losing, it can replace them with someone you never dreamt of having”
  • “Everyone who comes into your life is either a blessing or a lesson”
  • “There comes a time when you have to stop crossing oceans for people who wouldn’t even jump puddles for you”
  • “The world breaks everyone, and afterward many are strong at the broken places” – Hemingway
  • “Train yourself to let go of everything you fear to lose. The fear of loss is the path to the Dark Side” – Yoda

The White Raccoon

•August 27, 2007 • Leave a Comment

This raccoon, affectionately nicknamed Casper, has been spending some time hanging around the backyard. Casper comes back everyday at around 1:00 pm for biscuits and tea. I feel bad for this little guy since what was previously his 30 acre home has now been paved over and turned into single family homes….of which he unfortunately cannot afford. p1020597.jpg

•July 31, 2007 • Leave a Comment

Hello world!

•July 30, 2007 • 1 Comment

Welcome to

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