In restaurants, it’s not the successful experience we create that makes it all work; it’s all the hard work we put in that makes the experience so successful. Every facet of the restaurant operation builds upon itself. From the Back-of-House finances where crucial number crunching is paramount in establishing a strong foundation, to the consistently genuine presentation and service to our guests by a well-trained and comfortably knowledgeable staff- every element of our restaurant must work well. No department is more important than another, and all demand dedicated focus, seasoned expertise, and a vigilant commitment to truly create and exceed guest expectations and experiences at every opportunity. No successful restaurant experience is created or achieved without hard work. Commitment to diligently “work” at creating a wonderful restaurant experience will inevitably generate the rewarding outcome of a satisfied and a loyal customer base. This, in turn, will yield steady and increasing revenue that is foundational to the working success of every department. Compensated employees from the incoming revenue ensure a hard working team. Therefore, HARD WORK=WELL RUN RESTAURANT =EXCELLENT EXPERIENCE =SATISFIED GUEST=REVENUE=COMPENSATED AND MOTIVATED STAFF=HARD WORK=WELL RUN RESTAURANT=EXCELLENT EXPERIENCE =SATISFIED GUEST =REVENUE, ETC…and the circle repeats to continued success after success. When all is said and done, the entire theme of success is predicated upon two words-“HARD WORK”. Remember the words of perhaps the world’s greatest inventor, Thomas Edison? “Success is 1% inspiration and 99% perspiration”!

To set out as a restaurant team to embrace and achieve HARD WORK, is to step out together in ensuring our own success as a restaurant, as professionals, as a team, and in the experiences of each and every guest who we are privileged to serve.

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Life only has “Play Mode”

1.11.16. We’re 11 days into a new year and I’m over 38 years into life. As I tried to focus and meditate this morning, my thoughts were busy and unorganized. I scrolled through the Facebook status updates of my friends, listened to the local news in the background, flipped phone apps to check my work emails and began to formulate a game plan for the day and week, wondered if I should text my sister this early to check-in and see how she’s feeling, was concerned that my employees would receive there W-2’s and if it was my responsibility to mail them…..on to get ready for the day-…

Life has one mode-“PLAY”, and this started to creep into my thoughts as I jumped in the shower and knock that out of the way. There would be no option of a pause button at any point today to stop and think about a situation before I respond. My thoughts started to quiet and focus. “This LIFE of mine will only ever stop once”. “There won’t be another 1.11.16 to wake-up”, “There’s no way to go back and correct any of my actions yesterday”, “I will never be able to go back to last week and add one more activity, change any actions, respond differently to any situations, give more of myself, and invest more time in what I can now see as last week’s important moments. Life is in constant forward motion whether or not we choose to live in this reality.

Then, I thought of a remote control. How different would this life be if I had the master remote control? How would my days, hours, minutes change if I could manipulate them with a “rewind” button, or a “fast-forward ” function?

REWIND: Oh for the moments I wish I could go back and relive if life were to offer a rewind mode. My Mom recently passed not even 3 months ago. Since her death, I am continually over-whelmed with floods of sweet cherished memories of the times on earth I was blessed to know and have this sweet angel in my life. If I could, I’d spend my days rewinding back to the cold mornings I’d find my Mom making me hot oatmeal in the kitchen while she kissed me and loved on me. I’d relive, over and over, trips to the grocery store, conversations we shared, listening to her sing along with the radio, hold her tight and breath her warmth.  Then truth showed me the flip-side. If rewind were an option, I’d spend just as many moments go back to actions I wanted to delete and relive.  Those would be endless, because the truth is I would never get them perfect enough. For a moment, a “rewind” option seemed so useful. Life would be tragic if I were stuck in rewind. I’d never live. I’d always be in a backward mode trying to correct and relive. I know this morning that I want to live so that I don’t need a rewind mode.  I want to make the right choices on the first play through. I want to focus on making every second relevant. I want to live in the moment for each special second I spend with my friends and family. I want to use all the wonderful memories life has given me to remind me, not rewind, of how I should live as I move forward every second of every day.

FAST FORWARD: Will everything work out with my new business? If I go out with my friends will I really have a great time or will I wish I had stayed at home and watched movies with my nieces and nephews?  Will anything go wrong at work this year that I may be able to address differently or change? Will I even have a job at the end of this year? The ability to look ahead seemed helpful for a moment. It certainly would be nice to be able to view any and every situation before I “got into it”. Knowledge of my future would certainly help me to choose my current actions more carefully if I could expect a positive end, I thought. All said, I’d probably never move forward if I were able to see what is ahead. I would spend my days worrying, scheming, and preparing. I would not truly live, for with a knowledge of the future, I would never experience all the wonderful emotions of life that come with living in the moment. Joy, surprise, fright, anticipation, love, humor….
STOP: Life will stop, once, and it will be no more. Today, this day, this minute, this second, I choose to live every moment as to not need “rewind”, “fast-forward”, “pause”, or “delete”. I will enjoy every second knowing that my life is lived in “PLAY” mode, and with each second I can learn, love, choose, enjoy, experience, change, grow, and be of influence until the unknown moment when life comes to an end.

….After writing the above this morning, I was confronted by someone very special to me, about an action I had taken that may hurt them because of my negligence. On the inside, I am absolutely torn up about the potential outcome as well as the damage and hurt I may have caused. I learned earlier this morning, and so very passionately espoused that there is no “rewind”. What’s done cannot be undone. Looking ahead, I can learn from the past and be more cautious and deliberating when I approach a situation that can and does have great affect on one who to me I hold so dear. Moving forward, I cannot worry and scheme about what will be, or could be, or might be until it actually takes place. I will choose patience instead of hastiness. I will choose peace instead of worry. I will choose to keep my focus rather than suffer from distraction. I will trust in the strength of right in opposition to the weakness of fear.

So quickly, life can call us to put into action what in word we believe and in theory we know to be best.
Our choice to learn, grow, and understand a belief through action and practice is truly living out our life’s purpose. To disregard a truth, selectively ignore, and excuse it’s pertinance to a difficult situation is to tempt life to stop.

To be continued…

My world

My world is only chaos, confusion, deadline, exhaustion, scrambling surviving, digging deep, growing, adapting, learning, changing, working, forgetting, repeating, overlooking, appreciating, understanding consequences, paying back, struggling, hurting, focusing, refocusing, choosing, believing, loving, giving, feeling, forgiving, knowing, and trusting.  All of these are molding the “me” that I am and helping to mold the “me” I will become. I will be equally thankful for everything that “makes up” my world and the challenges faced therein.

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-In trials I grow.
-In trials I am stretched.
-In trials I have options on what and how to deal with the situations in which I am confronted.
-I should not make my trials a problem or a trial for others around me.
-In resolving or dealing with a trial, it is never right to do wrong or neglect responsibilities or previously made promises.
-In trials, I must stay positive so I can think wisely and clearly find solutions and resolutions.
-In trials, I should not let my pride, selfishness, or comfort zone keep me from embracing a solution that does not feel simple, good, or easy.
In trials, I become the me that is not possible without a trial to grow me, stretch me, teach me, humble me, test me, remind me, educate me, and improve me.
-in trials I will be thankful for the opportunity to navigate successfully through to the trial’s end.
Standing on the other side of a trial, I am able to look back and see the simple to immense blessings it brought, the valuable and needed lessons it taught, and a renewed and enlightened pattern in mindset and thought that will serve me well as I navigate each day I am blessed to continue to live, and breath, and experience this one miraculous life.

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Thank you for the landscaping truck and the white car.. what would i do without you. That was so cool. Thank you from my heart. You are my family.

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Understanding the big picture before it rests in a frame behind glass is nearly impossible. A picture must be complete and seen in it’s resolute state to teach and share it’s truth. Until that point of completion, what is possible is to see, appreciate, and learn from the small portions of an evolving picture. Each part encapsulates an energy, truth, lesson, and understanding which will eventually create a masterpiece. As inpatient human beings, we want and demand a finished product. We must know what is in it for us at the end of a thing if we are to engage from the beginning. We thrive on the cover shot at the finish line and often forget or hurry through the important and necessary steps whose transport made the celebrated finish possible. In so doing, we can and will never truly understand or appreciate the big picture to it’s extent.

LEARN.TO.LOVE.THE.PROCESS. before rushing to the end. 

Long lines are annoying and can be an instant triggor for a bad mood. Impatient- short-sited-long lines bring out the worst in the human race including: Respiratory gruff by huff, tapping foot tremors, displeased facial distortion,  elevated blood pressure, and a myriad of other physically and emotionally negative symptons. You know the drill. In fact, I’ve never known anyone who prefers to stand and wait in a long line. In most scenarios, first in line is preferred, coveted, and envied.
Consider though, the front position sees the end, but only the end.  The back, however-what a ride! The “back” has an unique opportunity to experience, learn, relate, question, process, enjoy, and adapt before ever arriving to the end. You see, it is here that there is experience gained in our journey to the end. Whether it be a long day of training at work, the desire to learn about an employee we don’t understand yet want to motivate, or a several year process that teaches us humility, integrity, or compassion-the journey will create the end. Truly, the opportunity to actively engage from the “back of the line” should be coveted above all. Placement and journey from the back to front gives a complete picture of understanding, and probably a far more perceptive and accurate than the same picture as viewed by the first in line. 

Life, if it is to be lived honestly, successfully, and fully is truly a journey of learning through experiences and fragments of the whole. To live life’s  process parcel by parcel is far more brilliant in it’s journey, then to arrive at the end void of the experience. Stop and appreciate the pieces of the picture that facilitate growth, opportunity, knowledge, understanding, and individual beauty.  Arrive at the end of a thing having fully engaged with the journey. Be patient knowing that the final picture is so much more because of it’s pieces.