What other say about giving.

No Danger Here


Sir Francis Bacon

The desire of power in excess caused the angels to fall; the desire of knowledge in excess caused man to fall: but in charity there is no excess; neither can angel nor man come in danger by it.

One of the facts of life I’ve come to believe true is that we as humans have the ability to take even the most innocent of pleasures and make it a bigger than life idol or obsession.

I remember first observing this phenomonon when I was in my thirties.  We had just bought a horse for our foster daughter.  Riding and caring for a horse seemed like a healthy activity for a teenager, and it was.  We had no sooner started her in lessons though, then she was asked if she would like to run for rodeo queen.  We discovered that owning a horse and taking lessons can overnight change from an affordable hobby to an expensive investment in both time and money.  It was no longer a just a hobby, it was a life-style.

A couple of decades later I encountered a similar experience when I started square dancing.  Inexpensive classes lead to more expensive clothing, special shoes, fancier petticoats and costly trips for out-of-town dances.

Recently my daughter took up crocheting and I discovered that what was at one time a relatively inexpensive past time has now become a very dear endeavor.

2013-08-03 15.45.59All this brings me to the topic of this post: my husband, Chuck Bryant’s woodturning hobby.  Now, as hobbies go, woodturning is not terribly extravagant when compared to his many other options.  He could easily spend far more if he golfed a couple times a week or needed a fancy boat to go fishing.  So I don’t begrudge him his investment in lathes, tools and materials.  However, when he first started out, I was perplexed about what we were going to do with all of the beautiful pens he was creating.  I really didn’t have any desire to run a retail business during our retirement.

Chuck came up with a solution; give them away.  That’s what he did.  He gives them to family and friends, sometimes for a special occasion (like a graduation) and sometimes just because he loves to see the look of joy they bring.  He’s like that.  He likes it when he can make people smile.

DCIM100SPORTThis may be why he loves working with Volunteers Without Limits.  Twice a month (when we are in town) he drives the delivery truck around San Felipe and delivers ‘dispensa’ and water to the homes of the elderly and disabled.  Chuck’s Spanish may still be a work in progress but smiles are universal.

It seemed a natural progression to combine two of his favorite past times, making sawdust and making smiles, so Chuck has dedicated his woodturning hobby to making items he can offer as thank you gifts to people who contribute to Volunteers Without Limits.  During the season you’ll find him at the San Felipe Gift and Crafters shows telling people about the food bank and aid to families with disabled children.  Oh, and you’ll find him sharing his beautiful pens too.  Both are likely to bring a smile to your face and that will make his day.

Chuck’s creations can also be found in the boutique at the La Ventana golf course.  The proceeds from his sales there also go to Volunteers Without Limits.





An Attitude of Gratitude


John Templeton

An attitude of gratitude creates blessings. Help yourself by helping others. You have the most powerful weapons on earth – love and prayer.


photo provided by Kat Hammontré (Craig) of

There are many people in San Felipe who are always there to lend a hand when there is a need and I will not likely get around to acknowledging them all but since today is Linda Sullivan’s birthday and there are wedding bells in the air, it just seems appropriate that I write about her today.  Linda is one of those quiet behind the scene people.

As one of San Felipe’s long-term residents, she could be said to be almost a local.  She is well known as the owner of the The People’s Gallery and publisher of the San Felipe Newsletter since 1985.


The People’s Gallery

People’s Gallery features the creative works of many local artists and artisans and is regular stop for both tourists and residents.  Located just down the street from YetMail, it’s a fun place to browse great resource if you need to pick up a last minute greeting card or birthday gift.

The San Felipe Newsletter

The San Felipe Newsletter is a must read for anyone wanting to stay informed about ¿qué pasa in San Felipe.  Published from October through June and delivered electronically across the county, it features articles from over a dozen local authors and covers activities from the South Campos to El Dorado Ranch.  It is also great resource if you are looking for current tide charts, emergency phone numbers or need to place a classified ad.

And More…

Linda doesn’t stop there with her contribution to the community, if she did she would not likely end up here on the Reluctant Fundraiser page.  She is also quick to do what she can to help many of the non-profits in town by making her business, home and truck available as a drop off point when travelers or departing part-timers want to donate of school supplies, used clothing and candy for the children at Halloween.  People often have limited time when they are visiting San Felipe and the fact that Linda is willing to let them leave things at her place, take time to place a call to the appropriate agency and wait on our convenience to pick up the items is an often under-appreciated service.  Linda also helps support Volunteers Without Limits by selling some of our donated treasures at the Gallery.  This service brought in several hundred dollars last year for the purchase of food and medical necessities.

Un gigante gracias, a Happy Birthday Linda and many wishes for much happiness to both you and Bob in your new union.



Because They Can…


George Soros
I’m not doing my philanthropic work, out of any kind of guilt, or any need to create good public relations. I’m doing it because I can afford to do it, and I believe in it.

Addendum….January 5, 2014 Today San Felipe lost Kuchy Sanchez.  Many hearts are heavy.

Every community has them. Sometimes they stand out and are well known. Sometimes they work hard to retain their anonymity but still fail. Sometimes they give millions. Sometimes they just give of themselves, sharing not from their abundance but from their own meager resources. George Soros, a Hungarian philanthropist, was not always wealthy. A struggling student, who was at one time of the recipient of financial aid himself. He was also a gifted financial investor who turned his talent and resources into billions and having done that turned around and reinvested those resources into helping others improve their lot in life. According to Wikipedia: “Between 1979 and 2011, Soros gave away over $8 billion to human rights, public health, and education causes.”  Soros is world renown for his philanthropy.

KuchySan Felipe has it’s very own Soros.  She doesn’t have billions to invest but she does invest what she and her family are able to into the lives of the people of San Felipe.  Her name is Kuchy Sanchez.  Sanchez comes from a family of philanthropists.  Her mother was known for her hard work and generosity.  Kuchy has carried on the torch.  She works tirelessly for scholarships, school supplies, food for the poor, and decent care for the animals of San Felipe.  She may never be written up in Wikipedia but she will always be a legend in San Felipe.

Kuchy left us today (Jan 5, 2014) to go on to her eternal reward.  We pray the angels are throwing her a great welcoming party and she was met with the words: “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

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