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Hi, everyone.

I’d love to share with you a few of my thoughts while attending a very fun activity yesterday. I’m sure that many of you grandparents will understand my joy and pride.

I had the opportunity of observing two of my grandsons in action. Grandson Jeff Dodd, who is running for Napa Valley College Board of Trustees for Area 2, and grandson Brian Dodd, whom Jeff, had chosen to be his campaign manager.

It was thrilling, also, to see both of their lovely wives, Kelly and Olivia, ably assisting their husbands, by welcoming and greeting the many guests.

There were tears of pride in each parent’s eyes, daughter, Judy Schindler, and former son-in-law, Bill Dodd, as we listened to Jeff’s inspiring speech, while Brian was busy getting the temperamental microphone issues resolved.

Those were some of the thoughts I had as I chatted with folks that I’ve been very fortunate in meeting through the years. It just doesn’t get any better than having good friends and an amazing family.

My thought, as I visited with good friends, and meeting new folks, was that, other than being immensely proud of my family, I am so very grateful for the friends I’ve had the opportunity of meeting, not only today at Jeff’s campaign kick-off, but through the years, often through the volunteering I enjoy doing.

I so encourage you all to “tip your toe in the water” and see what speaks to you. I promise you that the dividends are enormous. We have such wonderful people serving our cities and county. Wouldn’t you like to be part of the action?

Getting back to “tipping your toe in the water,” you have a wonderful opportunity to do just that. Please check out the following announcement, in case you missed it, from Napa Newsweekly, Aug. 3.

Napa City-Clerk, Dorothy Roberts, announces Commission and Committee openings:

Want to make a difference in your community? Do you have expertise you could share? The City Clerk is accepting applications from Napa residents for a total of 25 openings; “three to serve on the Bicycle and Trails Advisory Commission, five to serve on the Building and Fire Code Board of Appeals, one to serve on the Community Development Block Grant Citizens’ Committee (CDBG), five to serve on the Disability Access Board of Appeals, two to serve on the Housing Authority of the City of Napa, one to serve on the Measure A Financial Oversight Committee, four to serve on the Parks, Recreation and Trees Advisory Committee, four to serve on the Senior Advisory Commission. Please submit applications by 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31.”

Please check it out. This is a perfect opportunity to become involved in something that “lights your fire.” I guarantee it will change your life. You will be performing a great service, plus the pay-back of helping your community is amazing. You’re out of the house, meeting new people, hopefully making new friends, and the opportunity of making a full, exciting life for yourself.

I’m sure that most of you are familiar with Dan Buettner, who studied and wrote about the “Blue Zone,” areas in the world where the healthiest and longest-living people lived.

Buettner wrote that “Finding your tribe trumps just about everything else when it comes to your health.” He found that the people who live longest surround themselves with people who support healthy behaviors.

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What a fun way of living our lives, surrounded by good friends, who encourage one another in ways of staying healthy, eating well, laughing and enjoying one another’s company. Let’s start now, by putting our foot on that path that will make us happy, physically, mentally and even spiritually. We’re pretty much wasting our precious years by not hopping on that path of happiness. So, find your tribe, and start enjoying life.

Next week, we’ll see what else Dan Buettner has to tell us about living longer.

In closing, I’d love to share with you my feelings about being 90 years of age. I’ve never felt happier, more fired-up about life and full of love for my family, friends, and future friends.

I totally plan on one day becoming a centenarian, at which time I will be looking forward to Supervisor Brad Wagenknecht’s invitation to the Napa County Board of Supervisor’s annual Centenarian Celebration, honoring individuals who have lived a century or longer. Brad, I hope that you will be the one to honor me as a centenarian.

By the way, if you folks know of anyone 100 years or older, please contact Jo Cherry at 707-265-2337 or Joseph.Cherry@countyofnapa.org with the following information: if you know of a local centenarian, 100 or older, or will be 100 by Dec. 31, please send in the names, even if the centenarian cannot attend the recognition ceremony.

This year will mark the eighth annual celebration. The Celebration will be held at the Napa Senior Center, 1500 Jefferson St., Napa, on Sept. 25 from 2-3:30 p.m.

Please make volunteering something that is in your future. You will enjoy it, I promise.

Till next week, be happy and generous with your friendships.

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