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~ My journey & joy through CAL & AFG adventures ~


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PODCAST – Item #’s B-33 / M-12 – Intimacy In Alcoholic Relationships / Just For Today Bookmark

Episode 12 of my “CAL Chat” podcast is now available to listen to!  To hear it, please visit the show’s webpage at: www.calchat.libsyn.com (or you can subscribe to it for free on any of these sites/apps: iTunes, Google Play Music, iHeartRADIO, Stitcher & TuneIn — and you’ll be notified every time a new episode is posted).

Terry Anne shares, in part 1 of 5, about the brand new book “Intimacy in Alcoholic Relationships” (item # B-33) that came out in 2018 at Al-Anon’s 6th International Convention.  We discuss the workshop she once gave on the topic of sex, the different types of intimacy covered, & my strange experience with this book.

In part 2 of 5, she elaborates on communication from Chapter 3.  She explains how she has used this book in her personal life in recognizing & moving through old behaviors.  We also discuss how labels & biases can hinder intimacy & that this book is an example of our evolving Al-Anon program.

In part 3 of 5, she sums up the new book in 3 words!  I reveal my favorite sections from pages 18-19 & the story of loss on page 118 that still stays with me.

Her pick (in part 4 of 5) for her favorite outreach piece of literature is the bookmark “Just For Today” (item # M-12) & we talk about how it helps puts the focus on ourselves, not the alcoholic.  Then we pull out our “2018 World Service Conference Summary” (item # P-46) to dive into page 51 regarding the new upcoming bookmark “Just For Tonight” that originally came from the August 2016 edition of The Forum magazine.  To download the free “2018 World Service Conference Summary” so you can see page 51, visit: www.al-anon.org/for-members/world-service-conference-wsc.

In part 5 of 5, Terry Anne highlights new upcoming Al-Anon literature & explains how the slogan chosen for the 2018 World Service Conference applies to her own personal life.  To submit your suggestion for your favorite Forum article that you’d like to see in the new upcoming book, email it to: wso@al-anon.org – in the subject line, be sure to use the working title “The Forum Book” & they’ll also need to know the title, month, & year in which the article appeared in the magazine.  Visit this podcast’s website, www.calchat.libsyn.com, to download & print out a PDF form if you’d like to send in your suggestions by regular mail.  Lastly, to submit your sharing for the new Daily Reader visit www.al-anon.org/for-members/members-resources/literature/literature-resources & click on the blue button that says “Send Your Sharing.”

**BONUS: If you’d like to follow the “CAL Chat” show on Instagram, visit: www.instagram.com/calchatfan1 or you can search by the username: CALChatFan1.  It’s a different way to enjoy Conference Approved Literature.  So, as always, I hope you enjoy & happy reading

 

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PODCAST – ANNOUNCEMENT: DEEP DIVE SHOW

**I’m happy to announce a new spin-off podcast show called “CAL Chat–DEEP DIVE” which will focus on a single piece of literature over a series of episodes.  The first one will feature the 4th Step Inventory workbook “Blueprint For Progress” (item # P-91).  Here’s a sneak-peek look at the new show’s logo.  Stay tuned for more info…**


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PODCAST – Item #’s P-78 / B-21 – When I Got Busy, I Got Better / From Survival To Recovery

Episode 11 of my “CAL Chat” podcast is now available to listen to!  To hear it, please visit the show’s webpage at: www.calchat.libsyn.com (or you can subscribe to it for free on any of these sites/apps: iTunes, Google Play Music, iHeartRADIO, Stitcher & TuneIn — and you’ll be notified every time a new episode is posted).

Susan shares, in part 1 of 4, about how the booklet “When I Got Busy, I Got Better” (item # P-78) impacted her life.  We discuss the different types of fear in Chapter One, how service keeps us from isolating, & that we’re so glad there’s no performance review in service work!

In part 2 of 4, I ask her a question from page 23 of “When I Got Busy, I Got Better.”  She explains helping vs enabling, we discuss a quote from page 2, how we could use the second half of the book in a meeting, & the difference between being grateful & thankful.  A NOTE OF CAUTION: this is the first episode to include EXPLICIT language, so proceed accordingly!  😉

In part 3 of 4, her pick for her favorite outreach piece of literature is the book “From Survival To Recovery” (B-21) because she grew up in an alcoholic home.  She highlights the chapter “Picking Up The Tools” on page 107.  We also talk about why 1994 was a good year for Conference Approved Literature (CAL) & how this book marked a turning point for Al-Anon.

Susan & I talk about different ways (in part 4 of 4) to use that book for outreach purposes — including raffle baskets!  We also explore how one can contribute to Al-Anon other than putting money in the Seventh Tradition basket.  She singles out the section “Steps to the Future” from page 255 (or 257 depending on the book’s edition) & we remember what it was like growing up in an alcoholic home.  Lastly, we look forward to the brand new book that will be debuting at the international convention in 2018!  International Convention Website

**BONUS: If you’d like to follow the “CAL Chat” show on Instagram, visit: www.instagram.com/calchatfan1 or you can search by the username: CALChatFan1.  It’s a different way to enjoy Conference Approved Literature.  So, as always, I hope you enjoy & happy reading!


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PODCAST – Item #’s B-22 / M-12 – How Al-Anon Works / Just For Today Bookmark

Episode 10 of my “CAL Chat” podcast is now available to listen to!  To hear it, please visit the show’s webpage at: www.calchat.libsyn.com (or you can subscribe to it for free on iTunes, Google Play Music, iHeartRADIO, & now the apps: Stitcher as well as TuneIn — you’ll be notified every time a new episode is posted).

Wendy shares, in part 1 of 4, about using the slogans from Chapter 9 of “How Al-Anon Works” (item # B-22 for hardcover, B-32 for softcover) as stepping stones to serenity & how serenity can eventually become a guiding force in our lives for making decisions.  We also look closer at “Let it Begin With Me” as not just something that we say at the end of an Al-Anon meeting or having to do with outreach.

In part 2 of 4, we focus on “Let Go & Let God” (especially the importance of faith in the 2nd half) & how a specific physical token can be used as a reminder to put this slogan into action!  I give recommendations on other CAL pieces to reference for a deeper dive into the slogans & lastly, find out why I consider slogans are similar to prismatic jewels.

The bookmark, “Just For Today” (M-12), is Wendy’s favorite piece of outreach literature in part 3 of 4.  We talk about the current conversation at Al-Anon’s headquarters, the World Service Office (WSO), regarding the recommendation to remove the PRAYER FOR TODAY section.  Using pages 57 – 60 of the “2016 World Service Conference Summary” (P-46), we explore the CAL process to remove, edit, or replace the prayer.  Wendy shares about the interaction between the Literature Committee & the World Service Conference (WSC) & how it’s important to not be afraid to have uncomfortable discussions that affect literature decisions.

In the last part (#4), Wendy shares what she is hoping for with a new change for the upcoming “2017 World Service Conference Summary” (P-46) due in August & what sets this item apart from the rest of the literature in the CAL Catalog (S-15).  She also reveals a unique location to leave the “Just For Today” bookmark that is too high of a risky spot for me.  Discover what is on the second “Just For Today” bookmark (M-13) & what one word on the wallet card version (M-11) is hidden in our literature!

**BONUS: If you’d like to follow the “CAL Chat” show on Instagram, visit: www.instagram.com/calchatfan1 or you can search by the username: CALChatFan1.  It’s a different way to enjoy Conference Approved Literature.  So, as always, I hope you enjoy & happy reading!


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CAL – Item # M-57 – My Journey in Service

WHAT I LEARNED: 1. While perusing through some Al-Anon service tools in the Area Archives, I came across “My Journey in Service” (item # M-57).  At roughly 60 pages, the booklet is designed as a journal so it has lots of lined paper & blank spaces for writing, plus it includes a CAL service-oriented quote on each page!  It originally came out in 1998 & is now discontinued because it was just an item sold “while supplies last.”  As far as its intent, per page 52 of the 1999 World Service Conference Summary, “It is a tool to familiarize the membership with powerful quotes contained in our literature.”   I personally don’t do journaling as part of my program study but I do fill out workbooks, so I think that’s similar – which reminded me of this profound quote from page 7 of “Reaching For Personal Freedom” (P-92): “As we write our answers & participate in this process, we become co-authors of the workbook.  As we proceed, this workbook becomes a record of our personal path to recovery, while it also connects us to a fellowship-wide process that we have in common with other Al-Anon members around the world.”

2. I have 6 favorite lines from this book (sorry, the pages aren’t numbered in the journal):

  • “I know I am in Al-Anon for my own recovery, & by volunteering to serve on the necessary committees, I translate phrases such as, “Let It Begin With Me” into action.” – From page 124 of “Al-Anon’s 12 Steps & 12 Traditions” (B-8) – the original version from 1981.
  • “Our responsibilities & opportunities for service extend far into the future.” – From page 195 of “Lois Remembers” (B-7).
  • “Service work heals the emptiness within me by replacing my dark obsession for another with my own loving light.” – From page 308 of “How Al-Anon Works” (B-22).
  • “To find the courage to speak up when needed, the maturity to keep silent when I feel like attacking & the ability truly to listen to the other person’s point of view all bring about the harmony & spiritual growth offered in Concept Four.” – From page 274 of “Paths To Recovery” (B-24).
  • “I’ve come to think of myself not as a person with limited professional expertise, but as a person with many unclassified but useful abilities.” – From page 49 of “When I Got Busy, I Got Better” (P-78).
  • “Thus, whenever we truly give of ourselves, almost magically we find that there is more of our selves to give.” – From page 101 of “How Al-Anon Works” (B-22).


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PODCAST – Item #’s B-16 / N/A – Courage To Change / Al-Anon Faces Alcoholism 2017

Episode 9 of my “CAL Chat” podcast is now available to listen to!  To hear it, please visit the show’s webpage at: www.calchat.libsyn.com (or you can subscribe to it for free on iTunes, Google Play Music, iHeartRADIO, & now the apps: Stitcher as well as TuneIn — you’ll be notified every time a new episode is posted).

In part 1 of 4, Pat shares how one particular sentence from page 199 (July 17th) from the daily reader “Courage To Change” (B-16) impacted her life.  She breaks down some of the major components that are involved in her recovery, how this reading ties into the second part of Step One, & which roles she identifies with from the pamphlet “Alcoholism, A-Merry-Go-Round Named Denial” (P-3).

The conversation continues in the second part about “Courage To Change”.   We explore more components that contribute to making it in recovery, which slogans have helped us out along the way, & how reading the literature can show that we’ve changed.  Also find out a few fun facts about this daily reader!

In part 3 of 4, she highlights sections from her favorite outreach piece of literature, the new “Al-Anon Faces Alcoholism 2017” magazine.  Discover two things that were done on this edition that were a “first” in this magazine’s history.  We remember back to how we felt coming into our very first Al-Anon meeting & how desperation can be a gift.

Pat explains in the last part, (#4), that of all the things she has tried, how Al-Anon is the only thing that truly helped.  We discuss ways to enhance the magazine while using it for outreach purposes & she wraps up with a “Last Words” section about amends & Step Nine.

**BONUS: If you’d like to follow the “CAL Chat” show on Instagram, visit: www.instagram.com/calchatfan1 or you can search by the username: CALChatFan1.  It’s a different way to enjoy Conference Approved Literature.  So, as always, I hope you enjoy & happy reading!

 


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CAL – Item # N/A – Al-Anon Faces Alcoholism 2017

afa-2017WHAT I LEARNED: 1. My next podcast guest said that “Al-Anon Faces Alcoholism 2017” was her favorite outreach piece that she wanted to talk about on my “CAL Chat” show, so it was time to read it all the way through!  I had read entire versions of previous ones so I was struck by several “firsts” that this 2017 magazine has & have listed them below:

A) Ever since this magazine debuted in 2006 (for the 2007 edition), the first page inside always featured a “Dear Reader” welcome letter from Al-Anon’s Executive Director, Ric B.  However, now that Ric B. has moved on (as of April 2016), there is no letter in the 2017 edition.  It has been replaced with 12 questions to help someone identify if Al-Anon is right for them.  We’ll have to see if next year’s edition goes back to having a letter because I have to admit, I kinda miss it.  It seemed to make the magazine more personable, but maybe that’s because I enjoyed the 2 times I was able to talk to Ric himself.  He was instrumental & supportive when I mentioned to him that I wanted to start this blog about CAL literature & it was his suggestion to start every entry with “WHAT I LEARNED.”  Thanks Ric!  I’m still learning!!!

B) This magazine also now has the toll-free number & website listed on the right side of every single page.  I think this is very helpful!  Especially if someone only has enough time to read one article, then that info is right there & they don’t have to hunt for it.

C) On page 18, you’ll find the first time that there’s a page dedicated to just finding Al-Anon on Facebook & it includes 4 QR (Quick Response) codes people can scan with their phones.  Why 4 of them??  1 each for English, Spanish, French, & Alateen!  Whoo-hoo – go Alateen!

m-76D) Last but certainly not least, the best thing about this 2017 edition, in my opinion, is that the cover prominently features a black mother & son (& the mom has a tattoo no less)!  Per page 29 of the 2016 World Service Conference (WSC) Summary, this is part of their effort to include more people from diverse backgrounds.  I love seeing this & it ties in well with the most recent version of the outreach bookmark (item # M-76).  In fact, when I leave these outreach magazines various places, I think I’ll put a bookmark in each.  That way, if someone doesn’t want to take the magazine, maybe they’ll at least take the bookmark!

2. My favorite line comes from page 24: “My first Al-Anon meeting was the one I didn’t attend.”  Intrigued??  Since this is an outreach piece available to all, I’ve posted the entire magazine here at this permanent link so you can read the rest of the story by clicking here to download it: Outreach Magazine 2017-English.

3. Pasted below are screenshots of this magazine throughout the years that you can also find at my Instagram account that celebrates all things CAL: www.instagram.com/calchatfan1.  Al-Anon, you’ve come a long way baby! 😉

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