The Spokesperson
e-newsletter by Michelle Cummings
December 30, 2020 | Wheel of a Deal Wednesday
Quote: "Without reflection, we go blindly on our way, creating more unintended consequences, and failing to achieve anything useful."
~ Margaret J. Wheatley
Reflections on Family, Michelle's 15-year project, the McMullen Family Cookbook and Genealogy
Reflections on Family:
  1. Like many of you, I spent A LOT of time with my immediate family this year, which consists of my two boys (ages 16&18) and my husband. Usually, I'm the traveling mom, which means I miss some important events and family time I won't ever get back. This year I spent more time with them than I have in many, many years, and for that I am truly grateful. Dawson graduated high school this year, which means I have limited time with him before he moves on and starts his own adventures. Dylan is now a Junior in high school, so my time with him at home is also narrowing. My husband and I were a little worried spending so much time together might have us get on each others nerves, as we find our business trips allows for healthy time away, so we connect more intentionally when we are together. Thankfully we have grown even closer as a couple, and I'm thankful for the extra time with him.
  2. I have been DEEP in family reflection on my dad's side lately. I’m not sure if my Grandma Mac blessed me or cursed me with this project, but it has been a labor of love. I finally completed a 15-year family project, the McMullen Family Cookbook and Genealogy. When my grandmother was still living at home (the home I’m now restoring), we went through her recipe box together and she told me stories about all her favorite recipes. I jotted down notes of how she acquired each recipe, stories of family get togethers she took specific dishes to, and what family members loved specific recipes. When she moved to the nursing home she begged me to put together a family cookbook. I promised her I would. Thankfully I had kept all my notes and threw together something simple so she could see it before she passed. That was 15 years ago... Every December I spend a few weeks of my life working on this project. I’ve done this for the last 15 years. I get out the hundreds of recipes, photos and newspaper clippings she left me to include in the document. I hound my relatives for their favorite recipes to include and a photo or two of their families. I sleuth through their old Facebook photos and snag ones I don’t have or will work well in the genealogy section. Almost every family member has their own recipe included, even the youngest that was born in October! If they don’t have a recipe it’s because they didn’t submit one, and believe me I asked! (And they are probably tired of me asking!). Every December I swear this will be the year I finally finish it... and this year was finally that year. Final project, 368 pages. What a beast! I have poured a lot of heart and soul into this project. I was fortunate to have met and remember both of my great-grandmothers on my dad's side. Digging though their lineage and information brought me closer to them again, and hopefully generations to come will know them, their families and extended families through this piece. I’m so relieved it is finished and off to the printers. My family members should expect to see them within the next week or two. I’m going to host a big family Zoom meeting and hopefully everyone will show up and share their thoughts. I've also created a Virtual Scavenger Hunt for them and all of the answers will be hidden in the Cookbook. I seriously cannot wait for this event! If you are curious, here are some photos of the cookbook:
Best wishes to you and yours in 2021! I look forward to new adventures and opportunities to be creative in the experiential field.
Have Fun Out There,
Michelle Cummings
Founder / Facilitator / Big Wheel
Training Wheels

Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer
Personify Leadership

Author of The Reel Sisters
Testimonial Quotes: "Michelle is a leader in the field of experiential education, and an asset to the community of practitioners in both traditional and non-traditional fields of education. Hiring her for a teambuilding event only marks the beginning of your journey toward a better world. She embodies the phrase “the more we give, the more we have” and the amount of knowledge she shares freely with others, at every opportunity, makes for a collective knowledge base that is humbling and overwhelming. Michelle is not just a game player or game designer or game facilitator – her approach to life is an inspiration to all of us who want to play for a purpose.”  ~Hunter Merritt, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers 

Training Wheels Resources
New Podcast Episode!
Last week Chris Cavert and I met up to record an episode of our podcast, 'Ask Michelle & Chris About Team Building'  This week's timely question is: "How Can We Get More Engagement With a Virtual Team Building Group? Part 2." We also have 'Reflections on 2020' available. You can listen to, download and access the show notes to this episode and all available episodes at this link:
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