MY SIDE HUSTLE
Initially, when I thought about blogging and creating this site - www.iloveureka.com - my passion for writing and curating positive aesthetics of joy, or moments of online joy as I often like to call them, came from the overwhelming rush of positive, loving, caring, emotion that was bestowed upon us (my husband Jeff and I) upon our arrival to Eureka Springs as new residents, back in June 2018. Instantly, we felt included here.
Everyday, we still feel that rush and we still feel included. Proudly, we are Eurekans.
For those of you that know me, and have come to know me, what you see is what you get. I like to flex my style, hit vintage clothing stores, dress up at times, and use all the modern day technology (the internet, my cell, etc.) to stay fully connected to the various parts of my life, that make it my life. The various hats I wear (Husband, brother, uncle, HR Executive, nephew, cousin, mentor, friend, counselor, blogger, Eurekan, traveler, etc.) in all those areas of my life, all know the essence of me in a similar manner.
I rarely flex my essence. Those that know me at work, know the essence of me the same way that my brothers, Joseph and Brian, know me. I think Chad and Julie at my office would describe me in much the same way Joseph and Brian would. I'm a confident man in knowing that the outpouring of my essence is the same with whomever it is I know, or I meet.
The big difference, and to a certain degree we all have this, is that what personal details we share with people will vary. Jeff, my Husband, knows me the best and my brothers know a lot more personal details than Chad and Julie may know, for example. This is true for most of us.
I guess the point I am trying to make here is, I don't drastically change the essence of who I am for work colleagues and then change again for my brothers. Once, I heard someone say, "I am me and I be."
That, my friends, pretty much sums me up.
Facebook to me is a large memory book that gets bigger every day. Some use it as a political platform, a ranting station, a soap box, a dating site, etc. I use it for three main reasons - to (1) connect with those I love and care about, to (2) continue to foster and share online moments of joy and to (3) keep up with the never-ending pace of all that there is to do in Eureka Springs as well as NWA.
In referencing #2, I share my blog posts on Facebook to encourage readership.
This "side hustle" is a passion of mine and I love blogging about joy and other things that are important to me and to this chapter of life in Eureka Springs. On this blog, you will come across stories about people, art, music, kindness, theatre, culture, businesses, wellness, eating, memories, community, seasons, nature, and a whole lot more - all under the overarching subject that guides us all - and that is LOVE!
Welcome to my side hustle - www.iloveureka.com - I hope you enjoy visiting this blog and visit often.
"The Best Is Yet To Come."
MY NINE TO FIVE
In Springdale, Arkansas, just a short distance from Eureka Springs, and shortly after our arrival to Eureka Springs in 2018, The George's Family, founders and proprietors of their own 100 year family business, hired me as their corporate Human Resources (HR) Executive.
I've been in HR for 20 years, most all of that time in Hotels, Resorts, Life Enrichment Resorts and Cruise ships. At George's, I support one of America's largest poultry manufacturers and purveyors of chicken and chicken products.
If you eat, or have ever eaten chicken served at Panda Express, Panera Bread, Burger King, McDonalds, WalMart/Sam's, Wendy's, Chipotle, and Wegman's Food Markets, you've likely eaten our delicious chicken.
In my unique role at George's Inc., I rarely see, or touch chicken.
Well-versed in the six pillars of HR, I support, guide and counsel our Senior Executives and Business Leaders, along with our C-Suite Leaders and the George's, to make the better business decisions within the six pillars:
Workforce Planning and Recruitment
Employee Relations, Training and Development
Labor Relations/Collective Bargaining Agreements
When absolutely necessary, I will refer a business leader to another subject matter expert at George's for additional guidance, a deeper scope of support and sometimes simply for further clarification. (i.e. to the Director of Compliance; to the Compensation Manager; to the Corporate Headhunter, etc.)
My personality and disposition, I have learned, are compatible with the needs of HR and therefore I find that, more often than not, I'm naturally good at this work. I do feel like I help the people and the business succeed, and that is important to me.
That said, it seems that I can never get home fast enough, after a busy workday, to my wonderful home, family, friends and "side hustle" in Eureka Springs.
In 2016, I worked for Canyon Ranch. If you're not familiar with them, they own and operate Life Enrichment Resorts and Spas. Check out their website.
Wellness is at the core of every Canyon Ranch experience. As Director of Human Resources, I supported a team of physicians, nutritionists, exercise physiologists and other specialists. The offerings there are unparalleled in the wellness resort and spa arena. As an executive at Canyon Ranch, I too, had my very own supportive, personal team of integrative care experts that assessed my lifestyle, health and habits. After that assessment, much like Mel Zuckerman (the founder of Canyon Ranch) I had my own "ah-ha" moment.
It was at that time, when I made the choice to embark on my personal fitness transformation and today in Eureka Springs, my life here allows for the daily opportunity for me to continue to balance what I eat, drink and do. I stay focused as much as possible, harness willpower when necessary, and eat lots of George's chicken for protein.
In delivering blogs about wellness, it is my hope that, I too, can somehow offer up something, for someone, somewhere in the way of a personal "ah-ha" moment. If that happens for just one person, like it did for me at Canyon Ranch, then my work on this blog, discussing wellness, and KETO, and fitness will have purpose beyond what it all did and still does for me.
That approach is aligned with the very mission of this blog - "always love forward."
Please click around this blog for posts about KETO, KETO SCIENCE, as well as fitness and wellness.
MY FORMATIVE YEARS
Now, at age 50, I look back on the first half of my life, particularly my formative years, and ironically it is like a series of many blog posts of joy. I often wonder what my personal life-blog would look like if I had started one when I was, 16 or 18 or 20. (Ha, then again, I was 20 in 1990 and in that year, I had never before seen or heard of a cell phone, or the internet.) Those were the times when kids kept a personal diary, with a small padlock and a small key to ensure privacy.
After my formative years, I remained in Massachusetts and earned my Bachelors of Fine Arts from The Boston Conservatory of Music. Shortly after graduation, I moved to New York City, and within a few short months, accepted a job as a singer/dancer entertainer on the stunning cruise ships of Holland America Line.
I worked for Holland America Line from 1993-2003 and loved that international, wanderlust chapter of my life as a young (just out of the closet) bachelor traveling the globe. By 1995, I had traveled to all 7 continents and sailed all four oceans of the world. Living and working aboard Holland America Line was a life-shaping experience for me and one I will truly never forget.
Early life with the loving Scurio family in Massachusetts followed by life at sea with Holland America Line shaped me into the man I am today. I am happy. I am grateful. I always love forward. I also love meeting people, spreading joy, socializing and getting to know another person and their story.
I hope you will visit this blog again, and again as it is my intention to serve this community as a curator of joy. I will look for moments that inspire and offer up an opportunity to write about it here at www.iloveureka.com -- Click back often!
SOME HOLLAND AMERICA LINE TRAVEL MOMENTS | 1993-2003
What can I say about this man? To put it simply - LOVE!
We met in 2007 and still going strong. He's my rock, my soulmate, my partner, and my best friend. Our leap of faith move from Dallas, TX to Eureka Springs, AR has been a joyous adventure. Jeff has taught me that despite the ups and downs of life "Don't Forget To Remember."
With that phrase, he is referring to those fluttering butterflies in your stomach, those feelings of puppy love, the energy around those first dates when you meet and start dating someone. When life gives us a jolt of the blues, or a hurdle to jump - he says to me, "Don't Forget To Remember."
All relationships take work. Everyone knows this. We have found that this simple, powerful phrase helps us to realign with those early times in our relationship when we first met. Those, "this is the one" feelings that were quite powerful and life-changing. This phrase conjures up those feelings again for both of us and it fosters our endurance, tenacity and our love forward. It helps us work through things together.
Often, in Eureka Springs, when you see Jeff, I'm not too far behind, and vice-versa. Jeff has taught me many things, but mainly he has enriched my life in such wonderful, loving ways.
I am a better man because of Jeff and he is the best thing that has ever happened to me in my blessed life.
Love. Is. Love.