Pay it forward in 2011 and always

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By Bernadette Lauritzen

The Asset Awards have been distributed for 2010 and 2011 has begun. The good news is that you can nominate someone who does good deeds anytime during the year. The Asset website has been updated to allow nominations through from January until December. Soon it will include the names of all the winners and pictures, too.
As we strive to show that everyone can take a second to make a difference, we want to educate the community about how we need to be thankful all the time, not just during Thanksgiving.
The awards ceremony took place on the heels of the shooting in Arizona. While the news of the day was sad, we were there to celebrate the good done by people of all ages (and one dog), which make Los Alamos and the world a better place.  
I know the battle will begin about why things happen and who is to blame. The finger pointing will mainly be at the media, the talk shows and the people that incite anger.
What if, while respecting everyone’s “freedom of speech,” we all take a look in the mirror? We don’t need to look any further than ourselves to use any opportunity for controversy to still remain diplomatic.
It seems that he who speaks the loudest wins and many opinions that differ from the masses must be evil. However, it doesn’t need to be that way. We can disagree with each other and still get along with one another.
One local teacher has started a pay it forward plan for 2011. The do-good dame said that she will give away five handmade items in 2011, to the first five takers. It does require that you give five handmade things in return, to take advantage of the offer.
If you’d like to visit the Assets Facebook page, you’ll see who started the ball and that I’m waiting for five takers. I feel like it ties directly into the plans we started with Los Alamos Middle School, tracking the good deeds of students. At end the year, they will have a visual reminder, a chain of kindness.
Would you like to be involved in the virtual version? You have all of 2011 to do it and it really sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it?
It’s getting back to the basics, gang. As you begin 2011, in doesn’t matter if it is food choices, exercise regimes or common decency. So let’s do it!

Bernadette Lauritzen is the Assets In Action Coordinator for Los Alamos. The program is sponsored by the Juvenile Justice Advisory Board and the Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce. To learn more or request a presentation, visit www.AssetsInAction.info or call 661-4846.