Life, the Universe, and Everything*

     Musings from Linda and LUE-42 Enterprises   

Upcoming Events   JUNE

1 -- N'l Dare Day
8 -- World Oceans Day
8 -- Name Your Poison Day
14 -- World Blood Donors Day
14 -- N'l Bourbon Day (USA+my house)
16 -- Morticians Day
17 -- World Day to Combat Desertification & Drought
18 -- Intern'l Sushi Day
20 -- World Refugee Day
21 -- June Solstice
21 -- Intern'l Day of Yoga
21 -- Father's Day
21 -- N'l Aboriginal Day
25 -- Intern'l Day of the Seafarer
27 -- My Birthday
29 -- Waffle Iron Day

Shout Out!


A big thanks to some who made my life better in May 


 Bonnie Andriachuck

Steph Baran

Deanna Burgart

Barry Cavanaugh

Ann & Ed Davies 

Michelle Demers  

Neil Fleming

Kim Hunter Lee

Bev Mahood 

Kelly McClung  

Aliya Narine 

Theresa Tsoukalas  

Elana West 



Stuff You Should Know (or might want to)

Click Here  


Cool, funny, very short videos

Click Here 


Cochrane Mosaic Mural

Click Here


How Cats Talk to Humans

Click Here 


Cat Versus Human

Click Here 


Crochet Helmet for Cat

Click Here 


LUE-42 Enterprises  

10 Ways to Procrastinate Productively

Stuff About Love  


Reader Notes


Wish I'd said that...


Books by Moi   


Understanding Bylaws: A Guide for Directors of Not-For-Profit Organizations

ISBN 978-0-9866030-0-6


 Exceptional Board Members, Exception Boards 

ISBN 978-0-9866030-1-3



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Issue: #52                                

June 2015



     May has been such a full month, hasn't it? Like most months, it was full of ups and downs (by the way, thank you for your kind comments, letters, and cards). The absolute best day was my 3-year old great niece's Bollywood dance recital. Sure, there were people of all ages dancing but the wee ones were especially fun. They had so much energy, it was hard for any of us to sit still. I can't get the smile off my face.

     I also went to the Eskimos Women's Dinner with good friends. This event raises money for ovarian cancer research and it's always a fantastic time. I also attended the YWCA's Women of Distinction dinner. What an honour to be around those 52 nominees and to hear about the good they do in our communities!
     I got a quick get-away to Golden, too. While the wee cabin I used is long gone, the town still has magic for me and I look forward to returning soon and tapping into the inspiration.
     I went for five whole days only being on two boards, and then I was pleased to be elected to the board of Alberta Playwrights Network, and subsequently appointed Secretary. Now I'm back up to three boards, which seems to be my sweet spot. Plus I get to spend a couple of years in the company of some amazing playwrights. That can only be good, right?
     Wasn't the Alberta election fascinating? I approach elections the same way as I approach football.
  1. I want the best for my team (in this case, Alberta);
  2. Every season (or election) some good people get cut, some dead wood gets culled, some new superstars get signed, and one or two duds slip in to be dealt with down the road;
  3. As a fan (or a citizen), my job is to cheer them on, hold them accountable, hope for the best, and don't jump on and off the bandwagon -- stay the course and see;
  4. I approach every season (or change in the legislative assembly) with optimism.
So, here's hoping for my team (and my province)!

Go Alberta Go!


     If you're new to this e-zine they you may not know that I've been working on culling my "stuff" for a couple of years. Happily, I have a friend (or two) who gave me the incentive to participate in a garage sale. What an event! I cleared what I didn't need, made a little dough, and was able to take a deep, refreshing breath. The important part was to do it at someone else's house so the unsold stuff could be taken away and not moved back into my place. And I only flinched three times when something walked out of my life. The rest was easy...well, easier. Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Kim, for showing me it could be done and it could be fun.
     Here's another option for downsizers. The City of Edmonton has The Reuse & Recycle Directory. By putting in a key word, the search engine will provide you with a list of charities, businesses, and City services that can reuse, recycle, or dispose of your unwanted household items. Give it a try! It sure helps. Click Here
     You might also be interested in the Electronics Recycling Association that repurposes your old equipment for use in non-profits and other agencies. Check out:

     And now an interlude from my Australia trip. Darwin, Northern Territory was so hot and humid I thought I'd croak. But once I was able to catch a breath and find a rhythm, Darwin gave me one of the best gifts I'd ever received. So oppressive was the heat that I could only do one thing and think one thought at a time. That was astonishing for a multi-tasker like me. I punish myself regularly about not being "fully present" -- heaven knows I try, but it is the hardest thing I do in a day. Yet about a third of the way into my 10 days in Australia's north, I had no choice but to just be where and who I was in that moment. I was ever so grateful. thing at a time! Go ahead and try it, even if you have to hide in a sauna to do it. It's worth it!
Is this guy amazing or what?! Taken at Cleland Wildlife Park in South Australia

If you want to caption him, let me know what you come up with!



"The world is mud-lucious and puddle-wonderful."

-- E.E. Cummings 



The Answer   






I've been revisiting some governance models, notably the Relationship Model created by Les Stahlke. This model is often used in faith- and values-based NFPs. The core values of the Relationship Model are:


- Affirmation (of each individual in the organization);

- Involvement (being collaborative); and

- Empowerment/Servant Leadership (lifting up people).


I think this article from 2007 still holds up.


According to Stahlke the 7 deadly sins can occur at any level of a NFP organization -- governance, leadership, or management. Here they are: 


1. Sloppy Leadership and Management (Poorly defined authority, undocumented decisions, no monitoring -- resulting in frustration, decline in service, lack of effectiveness, good people drifting away).

2. Abusive Leadership and Management (Meddling in others' work, personal agendas, broken relationships, manipulation -- resulting in rights violations, good people leaving, chronic abuse, damaged culture).

3. Vague Strategic Direction (No Values/Vision/Mission statements, future based on "feeling" and not planning -- resulting in CEO assuming strategic direction instead of the Board, disagreement on priorities, poor use of resources).

4. Unclear Roles and Responsibilities (Authority is unclear or overlapping, outdated job descriptions, reliance on tradition, assumptions differ -- resulting in duplication of effort, gaps, strained relationships, frustration).

5. Unclear Expectations (Goals not set for outcomes and outputs, staff don't have ownership or lack resources to meet goals, differing assumptions -- resulting in no idea when you're successful, misunderstandings, sense of failure).

6. Square Pegs, Round Holes (Filling vacancies with warm bodies, inadequate orientation, no match of competencies or interests with tasks to be done -- resulting in limited service, unfinished work, frustration, demoralized people).

7. Forgiveness Confused with Accountability (Accountability mechanisms poorly defined, tolerance of poor performance, performance reviews lacking -- resulting in not affirming successful people or redirecting unsuccessful people, discouragement, forgiveness that does not produce change).


Whether or not this is the governance model you use, no doubt you've seen some of these sins play out in your own organizations. Lately, I'd say #7 has been a big one with boards, in that people are tolerating poor behaviour or unmet expectations with "understanding" and "forgiveness." The result is most often a demoralized board. What are you seeing in your organization?


For more info on the Relationship Model, you can visit:



7 Tips to Make Your

      Lunch Hour Work for You       

     In this article (GO Productivity blog August 2014),
Moira Wyton tells us that just because it's not a conventional time to work doesn't mean that lunch hour isn't a great time to increase your productivity. Here are her seven tips:


1. Make a Plan

Formulate a plan for your afternoon & tomorrow. Having an idea of how you want your afternoon to look will make you more productive and feel more in control of what you need to accomplish before you head home.

2. Do New Work

Take a break from the huge project you're working on. Write thank-you cards or do other simple tasks that don't take long to give your brain a break.

3. Get Up From Your Desk

A quick, physical break from your space will help you decompress and come back ready to be productive. Even if it doesn't take your whole lunch hour, your body will thank you for getting out of your chair.

4. Run an Errand

Do little tasks so you can have more free time after work. Choose errands you can finish quickly and that take your mind of off work.

5. Eat

Without food, you won't perform at the same level or produce the same quality of work that you usually do. Make sure the food is filling, balanced, and enjoyable so that you can work productively to the end of the day.

6. Network

Sharing a midday meal is a great way to connect with new people, keep up with old friends, or finish your work in a more relaxed and friendly setting.

7. Go Work-Free

Don't take work to lunch, leave your phone at your desk, and take a real break from your job. Go outside, visit a friend, read a book, or listen to music to rest and refresh your brain for the afternoon. Even a few minutes of respite from work will help you stay focused when you return to the office.


Here is the whole article: Click Here 

Heard in the Board Room


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