“Hope Notes”

“Hope Notes”

by Vitamin Guy

Hope is the most basic, the most important, supplement anyone needs.

If you or someone you know would benefit from a message of hope, faith, love, support, or encouragement then it’s time to

Order Vitamin Guy Hope Notes to be delivered to 

the people you want to inspire the most.

All Hope Notes are personalized, hand written messages uniquely created for the recipient. Each note includes a small package of seashore sand, to represent the great amount of regard the sender has for the receiver.

Hope Notes are $4.95 shipped in the United States

Add $2 outside the U.S.

BUY 2 GET 1 FREE!!

Call (800) 992-6044 

www.vitaminguy.com

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Inspire your employees to greatness by acknowledging their value…

 

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 9

The house that Jeanne rented didn’t have any grass in the yard. It was all hardscape. This might not have become a problem if she hadn’t inherited that beautiful white and tan Greyhound named Maggie May. Maggie had a tan diamond on her forehead, and was as beautiful a dog as I’d ever known.

Maggie just wanted to run ~ and run fast, but the concrete was making her lame. This majestic animal needed her freedom. She needed a place where she could race about in her ‘figure 8′ fashion, and bake in the sun on a bed of grass. And remember what I just happened to have…

Maggie May and her little brother “Archie,” the mini Schnauzer, came to stay with me at my house. Though it was difficult for Jeanne and the kids to be without them, they knew it was best for their four legged loved ones. Suddenly I had a reason to be home at a decent hour, and when I arrived each night they let me know that I was right where I belonged. The tail waggin’ joy these two dogs expressed was the same joy that I was feeling.

Jeanne, Kelsey & Dalton began coming to my house on the weekends. Those were the best weekends. The house I’d purchased a couple of years earlier (as a bachelor) had 4 bedrooms. It was obvious that the kids were comfortable and happy. As we enjoyed more wonderful weekends together, all of us found that Sundays were difficult. It was clear that none of us wanted to say ‘so long.’

It was a Friday in April and Jeanne & the kids arrived at the house around 4 o’clock in the afternoon. To everyone’s surprise, I arrived shortly after. I asked Jeanne if she wanted to walk the dogs around the golf course up the road. So she did a ‘quick change’ into her favorite 12 year old sweatshirt, her “60 mile Breast Cancer Walk” sneakers, her LPGA visor (the one with a little sweat stain across the brim,) and we were on our way.

Maggie May and Archie led the way as we walked the path between the 12th & 13th holes. We approached the top of the hill and I told Jeanne that I wanted to veer to the left for a moment…toward the gazebo.

There is a simple, beautiful, white gazebo perched on top of the hill at Encinitas Ranch with an ocean view that could stop your heart. The sun was closing in on the water. I took the leashes and anchored them to the gazebo post.

Jeanne watched me, obviously wondering why we were abbreviating our exercise at this early stage. She hadn’t noticed the small ‘bottle size’ backpack I’d slung over my shoulder when we’d left the car. I pulled out an opener and popped the cork on a nice Chardonnay. As I raised a glass to toast my beautiful girl, I got down on one knee…

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Alzheimer’s and Brain Health ~ Music Therapy

My wife often uses music to connect with her Mother who is in Stage 7 of Alzheimer’s Disease.  On her iPhone, Jeanne will select the “Frank Sinatra” channel on Pandora, hold her Mother’s hand and bounce it about.  Sometimes, she’ll sit on the end of the bed and bounce, so that Mom’s mattress moves her too.  The reaction is always in her eyes and it’s always positive.

Music is used to influence physical, emotional, cognitive and social well-being and improve quality of life for healthy people as well as those who are disabled or ill. It may involve either listening to or performing music, with or without the presence of a music therapist. In people with Alzheimer’s dementia and other mental disorders in older adults, music therapy has been found to reduce aggressive or agitated behavior, improve mood, and improve cooperation with daily tasks such as bathing. Music therapy may also be beneficial for dementia-associated neuropsychiatric symptoms, such as depression and aggressive behavior. Music therapy may help maintain mental performance in elderly adults undergoing surgical procedures, reduce postoperative confusion and delirium, and increase energy levels. Music therapy is generally known to be safe.

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 8

We became best friends and that friendship led to romance. I had waited more than 20 years for this opportunity, and was determined to get it right. I began courting Jeanne and I’d drive to see her at least 5 nights a week. It made for long days, but I didn’t care. I’d fallen head over heels in love. During our courtship, I came to know and love Jeanne’s children too.

Kelsey was just 15 years old and Dalton was 13. It wasn’t long before I realized that along with Jeanne, came the role of “parent.” Wow, who would’ve thought? This was a ship that I felt had sailed, and suddenly here I was with these two inquisitive, impressionable teenagers. Their concern was clear to me, though. They wanted to know that I was here to stay. Their hearts had been broken too.

Time would be the assurance, and the time we spent together was as wonderful for me as it was for them. I took Dalton out to play golf and as I returned him home, Jeanne said, “Thank you for taking my son to play.” I told her, “You know, I was watching him on the 12th tee box today and thinking to myself, ‘what an honor.’ You trust me with these two beautiful young people who are your world.”

I taught Kelsey how to drive…(but according to her current driving record, not very well =/ ) Again, I believe ‘timing is everything,’ as there was no way that Jeanne would’ve survived it, = )) but it was one of my greatest joys. The time we spent together ~ all those hours in the car ~ sharing our thoughts and feelings were helping us to form a very special ‘father~daughter’ bond.

I was becoming a “Dad.” Dalton and I shared the same passion for the great game of golf. He was quiet and reserved ~ much like myself. Kelsey was precocious (like Jeanne) and, the funny thing was, that Kelsey and I looked alike. The pieces all fit so well. It had become clear to me, and I think it was clear to Jeanne from the start… We were becoming a “family,” in the greatest sense of the word. Their little family of 3 had room for one more, and I was home ♥

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 7

Well, I wasn’t much of a decorator, but I had the basic items a man needs: a large screen television, a nice refrigerator, comfortable sofas & chairs, a pool table, and a ‘kegerator.’

Jeanne found a new place to live near the schools her children were attending. Her children were teenagers, and she had a Greyhound (yes, they are ‘that’ big & oh so sweet) and a Schnauzer too.

She was trying to keep as much as possible, the same as it had been ~ though their world had been turned upside down. We were living about 35 miles away from each other, but we would talk on the phone and email everyday. We were becoming great friends.

It was a wonder to both of us that we hadn’t connected after 20-something years of random encounters. She was “that” girl at the golf course in the 80′s. She was the owner of the furniture store that I’d wandered into in the 90′s. She was the Golf Pro at the Club in 2000. And now, in 2005, through what seemed to be the most improbable encounter, we had a solid connection to each other…through “Craig’s List.”

I watched as she grew stronger (though I wouldn’t dare call her ‘strong,’) She was not going to let difficult circumstances define her, but it meant everything to me to be the shoulder she could cry on when she needed to. I believed she felt the same way. I let her know that she could fret and worry about things, but what I’ve always believed is ‘what is meant to happen always becomes obvious.’

I asked Jeanne if she wanted to play golf with me. Obviously it had been quite some time since she had taken time for herself, and I was looking forward to the time out as well. My work, in the Nutraceutical Industry, found me traveling abroad very often. I was extremely busy running vitamin manufacturing plants here and in Switzerland, so golf with “the girl” was something I really looked forward to.

My house was just a mile from the course, and I asked her if she would meet me there. By this time, she felt safe with me, and so she agreed.

Welcoming her inside was like a dream. She wandered around slowly, observing everything, and taking it all in. After a few minutes, Jeanne asked, “How long have you lived here?” I answered, “A couple of years…?”

She pointed to the un-hung pictures leaning against the walls, and motioned with her finger from the picture to the wall. She smiled and teased, “Failure to commit?” “No,” I thought to myself… “… Just waiting for you.”

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 6

With the revelation of her first name, there was no “aha” moment.  After all, I never really introduced myself all those years ago at the golf course.

Jeanne and I decided to speak on the phone.  My curiosity about her had heightened, so doing what any well-versed businessman would do, I referenced for more information. Using the Internet, I was able to piece together the facts I had and, sure enough, I found ‘her story.’  She was everything she had said and so much more.

When the time arrived for our call, I was excited to share with her what I knew, but when I did the silence was deafening.  She did not make a sound.  So I added quickly, “If you Google me, I’m not the guy who had the shootout with the FBI at Ruby Ridge.”  (I know, that was smooth…)  Uh oh, can silence grow louder?

I spoke gently saying, “You’ve been through a lot. I’m sorry about your loss. I can’t say I’ve been through anything like it, myself.  I won’t say, ‘I know how you feel.’”

The first thing she said was, “Don’t ever call me ‘strong.’”

What?  I didn’t know what she meant until she repeated it saying,  ”Just don’t ever call me ‘strong.’  It’s such a dismissive word, like, ‘she’s strong.  She’ll be fine.  People say that so that they don’t have to worry themselves.”

The realization of what Jeanne had endured, and endured alone, was powerful. I said, “How about if I call you ‘capable & worthy?’  You are capable of handling what life brings your way, and worthy of all the best that life and love have to offer.”

There was a tremor in her voice as she whispered “thank you.”

Jeanne was still on the other end of the phone, so I began to ask questions about how her career had begun.  She slowly spoke to me about playing golf at an early age, in tournaments and competitions.  She’d worked for years at the local country club, from the age of 14.

Then, she found herself working at an acclaimed 36 hole resort course in Los Angeles. That was the local course I was playing back in the 80′s, the one with the beautiful girl and the gorgeous smile…

Could it be, twenty years later, she was here with me? My mind began to race.

I asked, “Did you wear a dark blue skirt, a white shirt, and a powder blue sweater? Was your office in the Pro Shop?”

She’d gone silent again, and after a few moments, quietly asked, “Have you been stalking me?”

My heart was hers as I replied, “No, just waiting for you.”

By the time Jeanne and I spoke on the phone, I had made my last move.  The house was near the beach with far too much room for just myself.  The yard was much too large as well.  It was a half acre with a lot of grass.  Had I unknowingly been preparing?  Is this what they refer to as ‘nesting?’

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 5

It was the final day my ad would run.  I’d put it all out there that I was ‘looking for love.’  I can still feel the excitement as I opened her response. The words were sweet, but sad.

She wasn’t looking for love ~ she’d had that and lost it. I believe that she was looking for “joy.”  To describe myself, I’d written “…one of my primary joys in life is golf…”  I think it was the trigger that made her respond.

She said I sounded “terrific,” but that her heart was with another…even though he had passed.  I responded, “I’m not sure how to transition from such a weighty subject, so I’ll just do the best I can.  I’m a bit intrigued by you for two reasons ~ the first being your font…” (I know, ‘what a line,’ but she had me from the start.)  The second reason (which was probably the first) was that your email address contains the letters LPGA.  Is this indicative of who you are or what you do?”

We were on lighter ground now.  Though she would not tell me her name (first or last,) she began to open up about her career.  We corresponded back and forth over a series of a dozen emails before I asked, “Would you at least tell me your first name?”  She wrote what she wanted to write and at the end of her message it said, “…and my name is Jeanne.”

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 4

So here is where the “hope” comes in…

Years passed and I’d hoped there was someone for me out there.  I’d dated off and on, but had never been truly affected by anyone the way that I was by Jeanne.

I placed a “Personal Ad” on Craig’s List. If my “someone” was out there,  I wanted to put it out to the universe that I was ready and waiting for her.

Unbeknownst to me, Jeanne had left the Club after a few years and became engaged. But just a month before their wedding, her fiancee died from a massive stroke.
She and her children went through an extremely difficult time.  Jeanne had become a terrific businesswoman, and was trying to comfort her children and maintain her career, all in the face of grief.

Her friend suggested she get on “Craig’s List” to find a new place to live ~ a place of “hope,” to try to begin life again.  That friend had to smile when Jeanne said, “I don’t know Craig.”

Now whether you believe in God, a Higher Power, fate, destiny, or kismet, I think that we had them all on our side…

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 3

I had to give up my burgeoning golf career, in spite of my inordinate success.  Work called, and I was driving from Los Angeles to San Diego most days.

Every day, I’d pass that furniture store just off the freeway in Temecula. Over the years, it had become one of my favorite landmarks, until one day, it was gone.  I missed it.  I wasn’t sure why. I had only been inside a few times, didn’t really talk much to anyone there, but somehow I missed it.

My job eventually led to a move from LA down to San Diego where I rented a nice house on a local golf course.  I didn’t get to play much golf, as my work required a lot of time and travel, but at that point I lived to work.  I’d never married and didn’t have any children.  I was the President of a publicly traded vitamin manufacturing company and that occupied most of my time.

One day, a colleague prevailed on me to commit to a round of golf.  He wanted to play at the course in Escondido where I’d rented the house, so I agreed.

The appointed day came, and we went into the Pro Shop.  Tim stepped up to pay the green fees, while I stepped forward to buy a bucket of range balls…and just like a welcome summer breeze, there she was.  I handed her the money and stood there and stared for a moment. I realized I was doing this and caught myself before she noticed.

On the way out of the shop, I told Tim that the girl at the counter had a beautiful smile. He said, “Well, ask her out.” I said, “Yeah, but she’s wearing a wedding ring.

”Strike three…”  Well, actually didn’t even get an at bat, but she had the smile I could never forget.  Years later, I would come to realize that it’s Jeanne’s presence that warms my heart, not just her smile ~ though when she smiles it feels like sunshine.

What I didn’t know was that she was actually single at the time.  She was a single Mother raising two children on her own.  When she wasn’t working in the Pro Shop, she was giving lessons on the range, and studying…

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Hope ~ Our Story ~ Part 2

More than 10 years had passed since I first laid eyes on Jeanne.  Work enveloped me and I’d moved a couple of times.

During my down time, I played in the Golden State Tour (“GST”) golf events, and actually placed in one of the tournaments In Temecula, CA.  I won a certificate, which was redeemable right there in town.  I was in the middle of one of my moves, but took some time to go down to the Golf Store to claim my winnings.

Leaving the Golf Store, and anxious to get home to finish packing (about a 75 mile drive,) I saw a furniture store close by and for ‘some reason,’  I was drawn to it.  I’ll never forget it.  I walked in, my shy self, short on time, not wanting to meet any pushy sales people… Sure enough, there’s this girl behind the counter with a beautiful smile. “Come on in, look around, let me know if I can ‘hard sell’ you on something.”  Then, boom, she was gone. So, I wandered around for a few minutes, ok a few seconds, then I left.  Long drive, lots to do.

There was something about that girl and her smile though, I thought that maybe I’d stop by there again.  A few weeks later, I went back to the furniture store…wandered in, and there was this older man, “Pops,” who greeted me warmly and offered to help.  There was no girl. Pop’s smile was nice, but it wasn’t what I was looking for.  Later, many years later, I found out that Jeanne was the one who smiled at me in that store.  She owned the place (literally & figuratively.)   Strike two.  Well, actually, I hadn’t even gotten up to bat.

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