‘MG Blog’

Pumpkin Muffins

slider_november16

Yields (about) 12 muffins

2ea large eggs

1¼c sugar

6t vegetable oil

¾c canned pumpkin, mashed

1c+6T all purpose flour

¼t salt

1t baking soda

1t ground cinnamon

⅓t ground nutmeg

⅓t ground cloves

1 pinch ground allspice

 

1. Preheat oven to 400°F

2. Combine eggs, sugar, oil, & pumpkin; mix well

3. Sift together flour, salt, baking soda & spices

4. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture

5. Pour into well sprayed muffin tins

6. Bake for 15-20 mins

note: can add white or dark chocolate chips, dried cranberries, or pecans

Practicing Working Clean: Organization

work_clean_blog

Stress is our body’s way of responding to demands or threats. It’s effects can be emotional (irritability, anger, depression), and physical (fatigue, headaches, high blood pressure). September and October are, shall we say, pretty demanding times in our company. It would be natural and “normal” for there to be some stress in the air. So, what to do about it? Sure to help is daily organization. Start with it, end with it, use it during the day to create purpose and focus for you and the people around you.

From Work Clean and Chef Dwayne LiPuma:
By being organized, you will be more efficient. By being more efficient, you will have more time in your day. By having more time in your day, you will be more relaxed…you will be able to accomplish the tasks at hand in a clear, concise, fluid motion.

Practicing Working Clean: Organization

work_clean_blog

Stress is our body’s way of responding to demands or threats. It’s effects can be emotional (irritability, anger, depression), and physical (fatigue, headaches, high blood pressure). September and October are, shall we say, pretty demanding times in our company. It would be natural and “normal” for there to be some stress in the air. So, what to do about it? Sure to help is daily organization. Start with it, end with it, use it during the day to create purpose and focus for you and the people around you.

From Work Clean and Chef Dwayne LiPuma:
By being organized, you will be more efficient. By being more efficient, you will have more time in your day. By having more time in your day, you will be more relaxed…you will be able to accomplish the tasks at hand in a clear, concise, fluid motion.

Start cool, stay cool

breakfast flatbread time

As we go from zero (or slow-ish) to full speed ahead, everywhere (yay, back to school!), your time is at a premium and time management is critical. So, before you lose your cool (and who wants to spend time looking for that), here are some tips:

1. Preventative maintenance.
Fuel up with the right stuff. Eat a real breakfast…one with nutritional value. You’re in the food business, you KNOW what that looks like. Just do it.

2. Take 5.
Commit to taking mental breaks. Step outside, take three deep breaths, look at the horizon – the sky – anything growing from the earth, close your eyes, stretch, re-center. And then get back in there…they need your energy and your leadership!

3. Know your hot buttons and manage them.
What really sets you off? Guess what…it might happen today! What are you going to do when it does? Remember, you are in control of how you react. Spare yourself (and those around you) the stress and breathe through the things that push your buttons.

P Words

p-words-62716

We have lots of them at MG: people, presentation, partner, process, policies, production… 

But, today’s P-word…POSITIVE (let’s shout it out!)…comes from core value #5: Be kind, be positive, be gracious. (Tip for remembering it’s core value #5? Five and positive both have i-v-e in them) 

One way that leaders (and all people!) can help themselves to see beyond the moment is to engage in positive thinking. This means that you believe that the best is going to happen in every situation, rather than the worst.

Positive thinking is not naivete; nor does it suggest that you keep your head in the sand and ignore life’s less pleasant situations. It simply expresses the belief that you will find a way forward in every situation in a manner that is most healthy and productive.
From Think Positive and Achieve. 

The biggest threat to positive thinking is…fear. Get to know what you are afraid of and you can confront it. Confront it and you can overcome it…and find a way forward. A child is not afraid of the dark, they are afraid of what’s in it…

Believe You Can

believe_in_yourself

It’s easy to think that FBI Agents, soldiers, law enforcement, all need tremendous confidence to do their jobs every day. But, it’s important in any career. It’s a mindset and it can make all the difference. And, it’s a skill that can be developed. 

5 confidence strategies from a former FBI agent: 

1. Take risks

If you think you never make mistakes, you are a narcissist…But if you are humble and self-aware, you recognize that taking risks, making mistakes, and failing will help you understand that there is always something you can do to be better. 

2. Ask for feedback

…of those who fail, 26% do so because they are unwilling to accept feedback as they are afraid it might be negative. 

3. Practice, practice, practice

The best way to build confidence in a given area is to invest energy in it and work hard at it. 

4. Link up

When your talent or skill set is reinforced by someone you respect, it resonates at a deeper level. When you believe you can do it, you work harder. When others believe in you, they push you harder. 

5. GRIT up
Great athletes are not always young and fresh; instead, they are the ones who have prepared for the game and have the desire, grit, and will to succeed.

 

 

Feeling It

feeling-it

Winnie the Pooh: “Piglet: how do you spell love?”

Piglet: “Pooh: you don’t spell it, you feel it.” 

We are in the people business. And the food business, but the food doesn’t walk itself from the farm to the truck to the kitchen to the cutting board to the platter and out to the customer. And it doesn’t clean up after itself. People still do!

Each day, we influence how people feel through our attitudes and our actions. “Hospitality” is achieved when someone “feels” taken care of…and when the food we are serving “feels” taken care of. 

So, are you feeling it?

 

 

Meet Your Motivation

meet-your-motivation

When we work in teams, like in busy kitchens, we occasionally think about how to motivate each other. Or…if that’s even possible. Can one human really motivate another? That is debatable. But think of it this way…have you felt inspired by another? Have you watched someone perform a skill or hear them describe how they got from point A to point B in their life, and felt encouraged that maybe you can accomplish ____, too? (whatever that ____ may be…run a marathon, learn a second language, plant a garden, seek a promotion).

According to the experts, we all have “native”, intrinsic motivations that are formed early in our lives. DiSC assessments have a section devoted to this topic. If you search the web, there are many self-tests…like this quirky one sponsored by Oprah. Whatever your motivation style is…give yourself a chance to feed it every day and surely you will inspire others by your example.

 

Peace

being_one_with_nature

It’s almost a new year which means in the next 48 hours we will see clips of “2015′s greatest or biggest…” – sports moments, news stories, movies, memes, etc…

And, we may find ourselves saying – or thinking…”I wish I had made time to ________”, followed by “I resolve to ______”. 
 
As you do, consider these messages: 
 
A repeat from Dr. Wayne Dyer (who passed away in 2015)

“…you can go about resolving until the cows come home, and you still have to live your life just like everyone else on this planet – ONE DAY AT A TIME…set up day-to-day goals for yourself… for example, instead of deciding you are going to give up sugar for a year, resolve to go one day without eating sugar. Anyone can do virtually anything if it is for only one day.” 

 

And, from part of Dorothy Hunt’s poem “Peace”:
Do you think peace requires an end to war
Or tigers eating only vegetables?
Does peace require an absence from your boss, your spouse, yourself?
Do you think peace will come some other place than here?
Some other time than now?
In some other heart than yours?
Peace is this moment without judgement.
That is all.

 

Peace to all – one day at a time

Elementary Wisdom

traits-lower-1

As we get ready for Thanksgiving and the meaning we attach to our meal…the gathering and togetherness and gratitude…we also can find ourselves marking time. Maybe we only eat a certain food on this day…or see certain people…or use certain china…or visit a certain home. Just this one day. And so from childhood to adulthood we go through variations of Thanksgiving rituals from simple to elaborate, while marking time, year to year. 

Recently, when Rie Godsey and I were visiting one of our partners (a day school in Northern Virginia), I saw a handmade poster that was titled at the top, “Traits we are working to grow in the Lower School.” It had colorful sticky notes calling out the traits and examples. Optimism. Perseverance. Flexibility. Resilience. Self-Awareness. Empathy. 

And I thought…wow…these are traits I (and grown-ups, everywhere) can work to grow, too. 

There is a lot of wisdom in what we learned and experienced as children. From traits to work on, to how Thanksgiving started.

The “first Thanksgiving” was neither a feast nor a holiday, but a simple gathering. Following the Mayflower’s arrival at Plymouth Rock on December 11, 1620, the Pilgrims suffered the loss of 46 of their original 102 colonists. With the help of 91 Indians, the remaining Pilgrims survived the bitter winter and yielded a bountiful harvest in 1621. In celebration, a traditional English harvest festival, lasting three days brought the Pilgrims and natives to unite in a “thanksgiving” observance. 

So enjoy the family, the football, the day off, or the china you only use once a year, while remembering what you learned about this holiday (and traits you can work to grow) so long ago…the beauty of each human life, the gift of food and the hands that grow it, and the spirit of reconciliation.

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