In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Community Service.”

Community service is done by workers who volunteer in various positions of neighborhood agencies. They serve with well-meaning intentions. Yet, many neighborhood residents and their dwelling places go on neglected with little hope of improvement. The real changes do not seem to come fast enough to make a real difference. The goals of the community agencies need to be re-examined if there is going to be any positive changes.

The community service agencies need to see beyond getting its pockets lined with government funds that seldom reach the neighborhood residents. They should access regularly the impact that they are making on their assigned communities. This would help the people, their homes, and their children take pride in the services being given to them.

Community service should be charitable, helpful, and educational. It would be good for the agencies to teach recipients how to be accountable of the funds that they receive. This may cut down on misuse of funds. Also, the recipients need to  learn how to give back by volunteering as a part of community service. The recipients would appreciate their gifts more when they earn them. As the neighborhood residents begin to flourish, community pride will become evident in the sight of all to see.

Shirley A. Brittenum




In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Wrong Turns.”

It was a bit confusing for me when I went to the employee cafeteria at my new job. The route consists of winding hallways and a connection to another building. At first, I went with someone so that I could become familiar with the directions. Later, I started to go alone so that I could learn the way. After several weeks, I started to get better at going there by myself.

Well, on yesterday, I went to the cafeteria to get lunch. I succeeded in getting there just fine. However, my return trip to my department was not the same. I made a wrong turn down a hallway. After a few steps, I realized that I was not going the right way. I turned around to head back in the right direction. When I saw someone coming near me, I just politely let them know that I had made a wrong turn.

As I continue to travel the route to the cafeteria, I will get better at it. Many times, I only go there once or twice a week. In fact, I may make the route a part of my walking routine. This will help tremendously. After all, regular trips on the route will be helpful. Eventually, I believe that practice will help me to get it right.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Delayed Contact.”

If I met my brother for the first time this year, I know I would be happy to be acquainted with him. He is my youngest brother and he is very special to me. During November of 2013, he and my sister-in-law moved to our city. It is his hometown, however he has been away from here for many years. I am proud of his serving 20 years in the armed forces before retiring at a young age. I tried to discourage him from moving by letting him know that it is not so great living here. Besides, my family and I wanted to be able to visit them sometime later. However, he wanted to be near family members who live here.

I would be happy to meet my brother now, because he is so thoughtful, giving, and a gentleman. He is always willing to help my family and me, if we need transportation for my daughter after she gets off work. Last year, he and my sister-in-law traveled across town in the rain to pick me up after church. Then, we went to a neighboring town to eat at the Cracker Barrel Old Country Store ®.

Also, my brother and sister-in-law were so helpful to me last fall when my daughter started a new job in their area of town. I was able to spend the evenings with them until she got off work. This suggestion saved me travel time and gas. I am so grateful for their help. Before they moved here, they were so supportive when there were weddings, funerals and my college graduation. They are still as supportive now that they have moved here.

My brother and sister-in-law are a blessing to my family and me. I appreciate all that they do. Sometimes, we get a chance to go out for lunch or dinner and enjoy each other’s company. Their presence is a great refreshment to our lives. Truthfully, I am thankful that my brother and sister-in-law came to live in our city where we can spend quality time together.


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Beyond the Pale.”

Thursday, I joined many people who visited the new sporting goods store in our downtown area. After seeing a news story about the grand opening, I said that I wanted to go to visit the store. However I got the opening date mixed up and went the following day.

I am glad that we waited because there were too many people in attendance on the first day. Initially, my family and I started out for a walk in the downtown area. Deciding to walk in the direction of the store fit into our plan to visit the store.

I am not a sports lover, however I do love fish. We were told by a couple from Kentucky that there were blue catfish swimming in the pond.  I wanted to see the blue catfish and the huge fish bowl display. I was tired when we arrived at the store, so my daughter and I sat in the lobby.

My husband went into the store ahead of us. After relaxing for a while, my daughter and I went inside along with my husband. He had canvassed most of the store and wanted us to see some of it. It is a huge place. We saw boats, alligators and fish in the pond, large swamp-land trees, race cars, clothing, etc.

I have not visited the sporting goods store in another part of town that is a part of the same ownership. It was a new experience for me. When we went inside, it seemed like we were in another city different from our own.

I was impressed with the store and the variety of displays available. It will be a great attraction for our city for the upcoming summer months and beyond. I do look forward to returning to the downtown store location. It has a lot to offer all ages and many interests.

© Shirley Brittenum