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FunTimes Magazine

Clearing, Gratitude and Intentions

There's a simple New Year's ritual that can help release negative left-overs from 2016 and open up for the positive.

Clear and release – Think about things that didn't go well or emotions that keep you feeling stuck like fear or anger. Write them down to 'get them out of you.' Acknowledge that life happens 'for us, not to us,' to teach us lessons. Thank them, confirm you don't need them anymore and release them by burning or tearing them up. · Gratitude - Think of the things that felt good, and write them down. Feel gratitude deep in your heart and rest a while in this space. · Intend and open – Think of the things you'd like to happen soon. Writing a list with feelings and meaning attached helps instill them in your subconscious mind for it to act on them for you. Set intentions to bring more of these into your life; use as a guide for making decisions. f you ever need to get back on track, you can do this anytime and give yourself a boost. As Henry Ward Beecher said, “(It's best to) judge people not by their peak of excellence; but by the distance they have traveled.” Look at how far you've come and pat yourself on the back! FunTimes was started from scratch during a civil war in Liberia—and look how far it's come since 1992! In honor of Black History Month, FunTimes shares viewpoints from inspiring community leaders, featuring three on our cover, about the all-important Black Agenda to further uplift our people. We share highlights of Philadelphia's progress outlined by the Offices of the Sheriff, and the Mayor, including supports for unity, economic growth and diversity. We reveal the shameful origins of the Electoral College, caution against threats to our democracy, outline steps for maintaining our human rights, and preview a long overdue “lynching” memorial and museum.

We welcome Jane Cowley, the Public Affairs Officer, NE Region Field Office, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, this time outlining scams to watch out for. This relationship with our local USCIS is important to FunTimes readers to stay updated on immigration questions and concerns. You're also reminded of the “Ask Kenney” initiative from the Mayor. We encourage you to ask questions to educate and empower you. Furthering our emphasis on health education, we cover fibroid problems, which are common; knowledge about them, uncommon—see if you have symptoms that may be relieved. Celebrate the growing movements of hospitals growing their own food and presenting them to patients, featuring our local Lankenau Hospital, and the offering of healthcare via QLife in our supermarkets—Shoprite leading the way in Philly. Stop by to see them. In our environmental column, we alert you how our purchases seriously impact our air quality. If you haven't visited the multiethnic Reading Terminal Market in Center City Philadelphia, we invite you to do so and experience the latest innovations and achievements that we spotlight under the leadership of General Manager Anuj Gupta. Get a first-hand view for visiting Cuba, the Earthship project in Jamaica, and Badgary Island's “Point of No Return,” in Nigeria. Take a look at highlights from 2016 you might have missed. We have another reading list for you, ideas for gifting on Valentine's Day, a special challenge for “Gutsy” women, and prose and poetry for your soul. See if your wishes for the New Year match the ones in these pages. You might want to go right to our regular fun features in the back pages. FunTimes is interested in hearing what guides and propels you into each New Year. We are committed to continuing our partnership with those we highlight, our sponsors, readers, and communities—to rise up from every pitfall and keep striving for the best--making us all true winners in 2017 and beyond.

By Cheri Avery Black