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Fabric Designing with Youth at LI School – My Time Has Come Program Senecon Experience

It was a pleasure facilitating four multicultural Textile Designing workshops for a total of approximately 100 middle school students at the Seneca Middle School Senecon Program.

I must note that these students comported themselves quite well, and showed much interest in the task at hand. It is little wonder that I felt like going back to the classroom full-time as a result of this experience. It was nostalgia all the way!

I promise that the sentiments expressed have NOTHING to do with the fact that I was literally treated like a celebrity by some students who asked for my autograph.

I congratulate the parents/guardians, teachers and administrators of the school for a job well done.

More on how Madona Cole-Lacy serves youth and families

A video summary of the Senecon experience

http://www.mytimehascome.org

Madona Cole-Lacy shows students the result of Hand-stamping

Student applies fabric paint to West African Woodcut in preparation for stamping on fabric.

Hand-stamping demonstration for students by Madona Cole-Lacy

*Visit our website for more art-related cultural enrichment and personal development workshops for youth and adults that you can book for your parties, library, school or community organization. You can also request a private “Wear-Your-Art” or “Not Just Another Paint Party” activity for your next event.

Madona Cole-Lacy, M.A.Ed.
Designer of Wearable Art * Teaching Artist/Cultural Arts Educator * Motivational Presenter * Nonprofit Founder
My Time 4Talk Blog

The Art of Humanity: Bonafide Artists Know

One would expect that as artists prepare to display their creations in public spaces, they would focus more on how much money they expect to make from their efforts. While that is not a crime, there are artists who are quite naturally oriented to being and doing much more than that.
I speak of special connections and the meshing of like-mindedness which on such occasions send thoughts of financial gratification to the back seat.

Better Than Silver & Gold
Some might ask, “Who goes to participate as a vendor at a festival and leaves the scene giving props to humanity as expressed by people she was meeting for the first time?”
I do, quite unapologetically! As one who strongly believes that the benefits of expressions of humanity take precedence over platinum, gold, silver, diamonds and money; I cannot help but make this observation by expressing appreciation and gratitude to the various humanity-based gestures that the artists I interacted with at this event shared with me and my husband two weekends ago.
(Please note that my original draft read “last weekend”!)

A Giant Embrace of Appreciation
A giant hug and much gratitude is in order to all the wonderful spirits we encountered at the North Meets South Festival! Since it is my suspicion that they did not give of themselves so that they could be publicly heralded, I shall resist the temptation of naming names. I will instead state their affiliation as East End Arts Members, and characterize them in the following manner:

1. Members of the Surprise Welcome Wagon

2. Providers of meaningful conversations

3. Empathizers – God’s Angels at car-loading time

* I will be remiss if I did not include Potential Customers and “Connection-Makers”

When I consider the countless legitimate reasons why we ought not have made it to that event, I cannot help but conclude that when God-sanctioned lessons of life’s experiences await, nothing can stop one from receiving it.

A Message of Hope
These wonderful people I allude to know who they are, and I am most thankful to them for unwittingly underscoring hope that humanity is here to stay. It is my hope that this ‘trend’ of acknowledgement of that which is so easy to overlook, will be ignited in others.

Madona Cole-Lacy, M.A.Ed.Program Director/Facilitatorwww.mytimehascome.orgwww.Iconnectthedotsofcreativity.org

Art Accompanied by Abundant Humanity at North Meets South Festival

Wearable Art
Special connections and the meshing of like-mindedness at North Meets South Festival
Madona Cole Originals Dignity Headwear
More Special connections!
Madona Cole Originals Business Manager and Supporter-in-Chief…no matter what.
One-of-Kind Wearable and Wall Art
Madona Cole Originals Wearable and Wall Art Display
Wearable Art
Madona Cole Originals at North Meets South Festival

Honor Your Father and Your Mother: Something to Think About

“Honor your Father and your Mother…..”

These words for the wise are quite sufficient. Or are they? It depends on who you pole. For me, it is a resounding ‘yes’. I thank my parents for inculcating in me, a sense of respect and for modeling just how that was to be used in my lifelong interactions with them, my grand-mother and great-grandfather.

In the company of three people I will forever honor.

The awareness of how my behavior impacts them and their legacy will forever be on default mode for me!

Mama and Papa – Mr. & Mrs. C. R. A. Cole

I could not have wished for a more committed Dad to partner with me in addressing the needs of my children.

How I miss your ever-present wisdom Papa!

In recognition of Father’s Day 2019, I respectfully salute all fathers and father figures who do their very best to have a positive impact on the lives of children – theirs or someone else’s. Thank you for a job well done. In case the fruit of your labor is not as yet that evident to the naked eyes, do not be discouraged, for the time will come when they will acknowledge the seeds of honor you have sown. I extend these sentiments to all mothers and all parent figures too!

Telling It Like It Is
Another perspective that begs for examination places the onus solely on the children. In today’s society, some mothers and fathers have unwittingly placed their children between a rock and a hard place as they play mind games with these unsuspecting and “needy” young people. This is found most often in contentious relationships between parents who are engaged in what I term, “DDPD -dangerous distant parenting dynamics” – one which does not necessarily imply physical distance.

This dynamic inevitably pits a child against one parent for the disgustingly sick sense of gratification or revenge of the other parent, while the children are left operating “on empty” when it comes to the integrity side of life.

Questions to Ponder

1. How then can these children develop an appreciation for the targeted parents when they have fallen prey to the antics of their own flesh and blood?

2. How do they pass on the Honor Barton to their own children if they decide to take the risk of bringing children of their own into this world after all this?

My Humble Advice…to children of all mothers and fathers who are indeed deserving of honor:

1. Hold on to your God-given pure sense of integrity – the sense of right or wrong that you displayed when you had no idea of how flattering parental manipulation could be.

2. Be your authentic selves – see your parents for who they are as individuals – pray for them and wish them well.

3. Do not get caught up in being used to inflict one parent’s vandeta on the other. Their flaws are not yours to fix or to bandage, neither are their subliminal or not-so-subliminal narratives yours to promote.

4. Remember that parents/adults are not infallible. They make mistakes too. If it does not sound or feel right, do not engage. Don’t allow yourself to be used in this way even if you think you are in control of how and what you do.

Honor your Father and your Mother..and while you are at it, honor yourself too. This is an order with implications that are pretty loaded.

Folks, it is time to pray most fervently — regardless of whether we are guilty as charged or not. Our time has come to consciously contribute to making this world a much more pleasant place for us and generations to come.

This is my take. What’s yours?

As I sign off, I would like to give credit to Dr. Lizette Wright-Polk for the Facebook post below which inspired me to write this blog post.

Madona Cole-Lacy, M.A.Ed.
Program Director/Facilitator
http://www.mytimehascome.org

My Dot-Connecting Mission
http://www.Iconnectthedotsofcreativity.org

What I Want For Christmas

I think I can say without hesitation that what most people want for Christmas is indeed relevant to what they consider to be of utmost importance to them at the time. By now we know that wishes for “my two front teeth” rather than a toy had to have been of paramount importance to a child who might have been constantly subjected to ridicule, if not bullying – not just by his or her peers, but by adults who might have unwittingly done so by simply commenting on the missing teeth.

It is with this in mind that I take to the keyboard to ask for a rare, most expensive, and elusive gift this Christmas. Someone must be asking by now why would I want to be so demanding, so unreasonable, so unrealistic at a time when most people accept gifts with as much gratitude as they can muster. To clear the air, let me tackle this by saying; as a practicing Christian, I believe that there is no other model of gift-giving that tops the gift of Jesus to the world. I say this with the hope that all other spiritually-minded readers would insert the name of one who in their respective faith-based belief, corresponds to the role Jesus was born to play in this world.

Why?
I can already hear the following questions: “Are Christians not supposed to be humble, strive for righteousness, be considerate and Christlike in their dealings with their fellow men and women?” I would say “yes…and more” to that. “Why then would you be so inconsiderate and demanding?”

I am glad you asked
As I stated above, expressed desire is borne out of a place of great need and when it comes to what it is that I want for Christmas 2018, it is no different. Even though my expectation goes way beyond the beautifully-wrapped gifts that are under the Christmas tree, it is my hope that the benefits of this demanding Christmas gift will flow to the four corners of the earth, with Nassau County, Long Island being the starting point.

If you are planning on giving anyone including me, a Christmas gift, please consider the following package that keeps on giving…way after Christmas.

The gift of love that is kind, gentle, thoughtful, and does not keep scores.

The gift of sensitivity that is innate in all human beings who care to use it.

The gift of kindness that can be so readily consumed when dished out to us with no expectations of reciprocity.

The gift of understanding before we choose to be judgemental of others – a valuable “know before you go” concept;

The gift of acceptance and tolerance of all God’s children – regardless of how they sound, what side of the track they are from, or what cultural attires they put on.

The gift of self-fulfillment that comes with resisting the temptation to use social media as a tool to emotionally, and subliminally bully and reject people we erroneously regard as our rivals.

The gift of a mindset to “do unto others as we would have them do unto us.”

What is so good about this Christmas gift is that it is not designed to go under a Christmas tree. The contents are most accessible, and once delivered to their destination – our respective minds – they release a consciousness that gives us the ability to share the same with everyone we encounter in a way that makes the world a better place.

This gift is also one that is neither unobtainable by the giver, nor likely to be rejected by the receiver. Why then are our homes, communities, the nation, and the world seemingly in such a turmoil? I beseech each reader to do their very best to delicately handle the challenges thrown at them by people they know, and in some cases, people they love.

Surely, you catch my drift by now.

Please stay in touch and tell me how your gift is manifesting itself in your life and that of the people around you.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year!

Thanksgiving 2018: Thank You Lord!

We thank you, God, for bringing us this far through a journey of dashed hope to a state of improved health that makes it possible for us to celebrate Thanksgiving 2018 with a different frame from of mind.

We have much to be thankful for…even as we journey through the tunnel of uncertainty in areas of our lives we will fear no evil.

Thank you is in order to everyone who has been obedient to the Spirit and reached out to us. Even though they may not have known why they were led to doing so, they did it anyway. May God bless them richly with like-minded people in their lives!

Pay it forward today and…everyday!

As I thank God for the opportunity to learn new lessons of life on a daily basis, I pray that all who read this will reach out to someone they believe might be in need of a hug today…be it virtual, in person or in their own unique way. Consider this a sign of gratitude to humanity that God will approve of.

Have a Happy and Meaningful Thanksgiving!

Sarah of Capital One Bank Adds to the Excitement!

When on August 3rd, I announced, “Our Celebration of Life Together Continues”, in my thank you message to all our thoughtful friends who had acknowledged our anniversary celebration, I had no preconceived notion of what form the celebration would take. I just knew that my husband and I were committed to celebrating our union on an ongoing basis – come hell or high water. Before I go any further, I want to thank everyone who has since extended sentiments and love to us. We thank you, for placing a smile on our faces as your contribution to our ongoing celebration.

When a delivery from 1-800FLOWERS.com was made a few days later, we were alerted to the reality that we might have to make room for other unexpected contributors to this celebration. As if this mystery package was not enough of a spirit booster, it was the elation that ensued when we set eyes upon the contents that stepped up the experience to the level of a rather successful attempt to minister to us.

This was not just a move to send us flowers to help us celebrate our 14th wedding anniversary. Sarah of Capital One Bank, who according to the accompanying note, I must have connected with recently, had chosen to mark our anniversary with a bouquet of our most favorite flower – purple dendrobium orchid that is symbolic of royalty, admiration, and respect.

As Sarah addressed my banking needs over the phone, it was obvious that she did so with a passion to serve her Capital One clients, and that she had paid attention to my every word and made a decision to reach out to me and my husband in this surprising and exciting way. In case you are wondering, ‘No,’ I did not discuss my love for orchids with her….and ‘Yes’, my husband and I happen to be a couple that does NOT believe in coincidences!

As we extend our gratitude to Sarah (of Capital One Bank), We want to acknowledge the spirit of humanity that Capital One Bank promotes in its workplace. For our suspicion is that in the absence of a culture that significantly touches the lives of their clients, Sarah might have experienced a roadblock when she planned to embrace us in such a sweet way.

As a couple who strives to awaken the spirit of humanity in all areas of our life, we fully appreciate this and say a big Thank You to Sarah and Capital One Bank for touching our lives in this special way.

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As can be seen from the pictures below, this special connection which gave us the opportunity to quickly get into gear for an impromptu photo shoot – with selfies and all – was properly savored.  A moment we know was initiated by love, compassion and appreciation for humankind that will surely outlast the flowers even as they receive the tender and loving care that they deserve from a place of prominence in our showroom!

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