Gifts Gratitude & Gumption – Caryn M Sullivan 2017-08-13T12:51:46+00:00

Starkey Hearing Foundation: Connecting Hearts With Hearing Aids

8/13/17 On a Sunday afternoon in July, it happened again. Limousines swept into St. Paul and dropped a parade of celebrities off on the red carpet at the St. Paul RiverCentre. It was the Starkey Hearing Foundation’s annual gala, and gawkers and media were snatching glimpses and gathering sound bites. I was there and, while it was fun to see Ben Affleck, I was more [...]

Lisa Bobyak: Living Fully Balanced

7/31/17 Lisa Bobyak wasn't oblivious to the festering problems in the marriage that spanned two decades. When her husband said they needed to talk, she was prepared to seek help, to bridge the ravine, and to begin anew. She was resolved to enter marriage counseling when reality shattered illusion. The man she thought she knew had engaged in a long-term affair. The man she thought she [...]

Simon Says Gives and Famous Footwear: Working Together to Repurpose School Supplies

5/25/17 As the school year winds down students are scurrying to clear out desks and lockers. I can picture the books, papers, pens, and highlighters, crammed for months into small spaces, quickly removed in the scramble to leave the school year behind. I remember all those dollars spent on the must have items: the expensive calculator, just the right felt tip marker, matching folders and [...]

Dear Daughter: Pack Your Roadmap to Resilience

Five years ago my daughter graduated from the all-girls’ high school where she learned more than how to ace exams. She competed for honors with girls who were laser-focused on college. She skated her heart out to make the varsity team before accepting it was beyond her reach. She learned about negotiation and conflict resolution over lunch as girls verbally arm-wrestled over prom dates.  Under [...]

Life Lessons from Sergio

4/10/17 When he sunk his last putt late Sunday, Spanish golfer Sergio Garcia achieved a personal and professional goal he'd chased through 70 tournaments. His is a familiar story - always the bridesmaid, never the bride. But with his fiance by his side, Sergio changed his story by earning the coveted green jacket. As a latecomer to the game of golf I didn't know Sergio's story. But watching numbers change [...]

Autism: Building Understanding and Helping Families Navigate

April is known as Autism Awareness Month. As the parent of an adult son with autism and a member of the board of Fraser, Minnesota's oldest and most comprehensive provider of services for individuals with special needs, I took the opportunity to shine a light on a complicated condition and the challenges individuals, families, and providers face in helping them to live their best lives. I [...]

Aligning Life and Legacy

3/31/17 We’re barely three months into a new year but the losses are accumulating at an unsettling rate. And I'm not talking about the Final Four.  Since January more than a handful of people I care about – my family included – have lost loved ones, several to the pernicious disease known as dementia or Alzheimer's. I’m shaking my head at a phenomenon that is one [...]

Colon Cancer and Courage

3/26/17 It takes courage to stand in front of thousands and be the butt of your own jokes, particularly when the jokes are, literally, about your rear end. But the tagline for author and professional speaker Brenda Elsagher says it all: She offers courageous conversations on humor, health and happiness.  Elsagher has enjoyed two successful careers. In the first, she worked one-on-one with clients, cutting [...]

“My Dreams Have Come True”

A delightful story about dreams, gumption, and smiles 3/21/17 Caryn's note: I'm honored to share a guest blog post by author Ann Aubitz. This post originally appeared on At such a young age Katlyn has so much gumption. Her attitude gives me pause - and makes me smile! How about you? For Katlyn's story, as told through her mother's eyes (and, I suspect, maybe a few tears), [...]

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