I didn’t advertise this, but I was away last week. A change of scenery was just what I needed. We hiked, biked, read, and explored. A lot. I think we came home to rest! Fall seems to be here and, to prove it, our CFO gave me this orange. If any of you are feeling crafty….you’re welcome for this idea.

In case I hadn’t abused my body enough last week, I walked into the office to donate blood on Monday. We had the Miller-Keystone bloodmobile here. I prefer to donate at their center, but I would do the bloodmobile again simply because the quality of the snacks was the same as the center. I’m putting it out there—show me the Lorna Doone’s and you can access my vein. Fair enough, in my book. The real reason for the blood drive was not so that I could get cookies, but because we pay attention to the greater community. Anyone in our extended MOWGLV family might need blood and our facility is a good match for bloodmobile parking. The bus driver said we were a fantastic site so we will do it again at some point (if snack quality remains the same). Thanks to all who donated. I’m sure our MOWGLV blood comes with that little extra “something” because of all that you do for others.

It’s not enough that I am working to the sound of a backhoe today. Dawn called to tell me that a grocery shopper reported testing positive for COVID after having delivered groceries to 2 clients last week. Yikes. The volunteer promptly called us and feels they have traced the source (not a client or volunteer) to a person they were in contact with 2 days prior to delivering groceries. Our Client Services staff will reach out to the clients to let them know and to be diligent in monitoring their own health symptoms. The volunteer wore a mask at both deliveries. My point is that it is so very important that you all follow proper CDC and MOWGLV protocols when delivering. Hopefully, these clients will remain symptom free. This volunteer gave us the opportunity to follow up with our clients—and that is so very critical, and much appreciated. We all need to communicate openly and honestly on this topic. Again, if you are not feeling well….back away from volunteering. We will miss you but we prefer that we all act to keep each other safe, even if that means acting with an overabundance of caution. MOWGLV has been here for almost 50 years and it’s because we have a wonderful sense of community and care for others. COVID won’t get the best of us as long as we do our part to minimize risk.

Here is another great community partnership–First Presbyterian Church of Bethlehem is offering a “Blessing of the Animals” this coming Sunday at 3 p.m. at the church building, 2344 Center St., Bethlehem. The public is welcome to attend. They ask that any attendees bring a donation of pet supplies: food, toys and other items. I did it last year with my dog, Ripper. It was fun to see the other dogs and even a cat in a backpack. It’s a nice event, especially on a good weather day which is predicted for Sunday. We are very grateful for the church’s concern for our client’s companion animals. No need to RSVP. Just show up with your fur friend and a donation! If you want more information, facebook.com/events/334662504432670/.

We are entering a super busy time of year. The Kitchen and Client Services are planning for distribution of shelf stable and frozen meals to clients over the next month. Our Development staff has a lot on their plate with a virtual event, annual appeal, and grants to write. Volunteer Services continues to recruit and onboard new volunteers, while addressing COVID concerns (see above). The subcontractors on our new building are just about ready to start work in a few weeks. Our Fiscal Department is coming off of a very good audit (thank you CFO, staff, and Finance Committee), but is still drowning in the complexities of managed care billing. Everyone has several projects going at once; that’s how we roll. We try and make it look easy.

Finally, we are doing some grading work at Fritch Dr. (source of my backhoe background music). If you are on site, drive slowly around any construction equipment for everyone’s safety.

Since I’m not emailing you directly anymore—stop sobbing!—I don’t hear as much about your adventures. Please let me know. I’m getting a little lonely…..