Cheryl is a passionate crafter and library advocate. She belongs to three different libraries “Friends” groups and has volunteered in different capacities at those libraries. She and her husband were on the founding committee of a small community library that is thriving in an otherwise underserved area. Not only is she an avid reader but she enjoys storytelling. She has been part of several groups that share short life stories together to highlight experiences.
In her spare time, she enjoys fiber arts, especially quilting. Plus she likes to combine her crafting with her passion for books by making book wreaths and book related jewelry. Cheryl first signed up for GetSetUp's Book Club. She was looking for a replacement for the groups she had at her local library that had dwindled or dissipated due to the pandemic.
Cheryl is no stranger to technology. She participated in various in-person groups on technology through Oasis for learners over 50 in St. Louis and Pittsburgh. The craft group she enjoyed at a local senior center hasn’t met since the pandemic started, but the meditation circle that met there has now been meeting by Zoom. She was excited to see that GetSetUp was thriving online and available anywhere.
She worked as a social worker and mental health advocate in a public school system for over 30 years. At the time when the internet was just coming out, her school offered courses to learn to use the tools effectively. Since her husband is a techie, she knew a bit about the internet and she jokes that for just a very little while, she enjoyed being ahead of the curve.
“For a VERY brief time, my coworkers considered me to be a bit of a tech expert. At the time hardly any of my colleagues knew how to use the internet and email. Since then I’ve been VERY quickly surpassed, but I like to stay current with things I can. ”
Virtual Friendships Often Become Real Life Friendships
Cheryl has been a member of an online group of women for over 25 years.
“We were all in our 50’s and most of us are in our 70’s now! Being part of this group has convinced me that friendships can be made among people who don’t know each other “in real life.” Over the years, my husband and I looked for travel opportunities that would allow us to meet some of the members, and by now I have met most of the women.”
Creating Community Through Regular Classes
When she’s not enjoying her role as grandma, she likes to share with peers and learn new skills on GetSetUp. She has enjoyed her meditation classes with Glenda who makes a point to welcome each and every learner to the class.
“This is probably the first class I came back to do again. It was very serendipitous that I found it a week after the neighborhood meditation group I had been part of for three years split up when our teacher decided to retire.”
Cheryl was able to substitute GetSetUp’s Wednesday night meditation group for her now discontinued neighborhood meditation class and is so happy for that opportunity.
“Glenda always asks us to name various qualities or ideas that we would like to dedicate our meditation to that evening. Over time, she named these collections of words "meditation soup."
Inspired by this meditation soup idea, Cheryl used fabric she had on hand to create fabric meditation soups to share with the group! The group loved these and it helped them to feel even more connected as a group. Now they are looking at how to play with these ideas in different formats. Cheryl is considering making them into a quilted wall hanging and another member is making the photos into greeting cards. Cheryl said that that kindness just warmed her heart, that a woman who used to be a stranger just a few weeks ago would care enough to perform that act of kindness.
“It’s nice to look and see what’s out there especially for places we are unlikely to go to or are unfamiliar with. Hearing more from locals makes exploration more interactive.”
Cheryl worked as a social worker most of her life, so she’s used to being a connector. She loves being able to connect different people to other people and to things that might interest them and engage others to share.
Becoming a GetSetUp Ambassador seemed a good next step for involvement with this tremendous place for learning and having fun. Cheryl is proud to wear her Ambassador t-shirt and has attended each information session for Ambassadors. Spurred by all this positivity, Cheryl has launched her first interest group as well.
Let's get together for some laughs and share our fondest memories. To keep the conversation consistent we will have a different theme each time plus fun prompts to help jog our memories and really make the conversation lively. Each week will feature a different topic - sign up and be surprised!
Friday, Jun. 11 - School's out, school's out - What did you do all summer after the last day of school?
Each week will feature a different topic for reminiscing and sharing the stories from our childhoods.
Join Cheryl and other like-minded learners to laugh and reminisce!Laugh & Reminisce