SNA May Notes and June Plans

Slow Streets, Break-Ins, and Clean-Ups

The City of Portland Bureau of Transportation’s (PBOT) Slow Streets program (the orange barrels and “Local Access Only” signs) will be updated with more resilient materials over the next several months. That was the message conveyed at the SNA general meeting by Scott Cohen, who directs the program. Scott also reminded neighbors that the Slow Streets program has several distinct goals. It aims to make busy streets safer, promote healthy businesses, provide more space for physical distancing (during Covid), and slow vehicles entering greenways and other local streets.

A resident of Belmont Lofts, near Sunnyside Environmental School, also addressed the meeting to report problems associated with nearby camping. She said they have experienced break-ins including people sleeping in the boiler room, turning off the heat, and breaking into storage lockers. It is very stressful for residents, some of whom have left, and all fear continued illegal activity. She said that the media have not given adequate coverage to such problems. SNA board members invited her to write an article for the SNA newsletter.

The SNA board discussed ways to facilitate neighborhood clean-ups. Regular newsletter readers know that some SNA members have worked hard to clean up trash in the face of inadequate city resources. The gist of the proposed solution involves partnering with other neighborhoods through Southeast Uplift.

Finally, a word on some folks who contacted us about missing the meeting due to things like coaching a softball game or meeting friends at a brew pub. Awesome! We’re going to get through this.

SNA Annual Board Election July 8th [Reminder]

The Annual Election for SNA Board members will be held July 8, 2021 at 7 p.m. Like last year, we will be outside SE Uplift (3534 SE Main St.), both masked and physically distanced. Board terms are 2 years, with about half the seats open each year. Five of the nine board seats are open and at least one current board member is not pursuing reelection.

Membership is open to anyone 18 years of age or older who is either: 1) A legal resident of Sunnyside, 2) An owner of real property within Sunnyside, or 3) The designated representative of a business, school, church, or non-profit in Sunnyside. All members can vote and serve as board members. Members may declare their own candidacy or be nominated by another member. Those that declare or accept nomination by June 10ththe meeting prior to the annual meetingwill be announced to the membership by the Board of Directors. Nominations can be made from the floor at the Annual meeting provided that the nominee is a member and is willing to serve if elected. You have to be present at the Annual meeting to vote (secret paper ballot) but need not be present to be elected. Candidates will briefly introduce themselves before the vote.

5 Interesting Ways To Shape Your Personality As You Age

What do you think personality is? It is your mindset, your behaviour, and the emotions that you show. It is what makes you stand out from others. It is your quality and your individuality. Every human is born with a certain set of characteristics. However, personality tends to change as you grow. Your upbringing, city, country, school, neighbourhood, friends and many other things reconstruct your personality, which means it is not fixed. Everyone changes with time. People become patient, cheerful, bitter, or reckless over the years. But, what if you could change yourself for the better?

Here are some simple yet highly effective and exciting ways to align yourself and contour your personality as you age. With a sophisticated nature, you would age gracefully and beautifully. 

1. Read Self-Help Books

It is a great habit to read books often, but is it improving you in the long run? Did the last book you read add something to your knowledge? Did it teach you life lessons? Did it explain ways to change your habits and let go of toxic traits? Ask yourself these questions. No book is a waste of time, but if you are investing your time and energy into refining yourself, then choose your book wisely.

Consider reading books from prominent personalities and learn from their lives and experiences. Make sure you have something to learn from every book you read. Over time, you will see how books manifest their magic on you. The lessons will show in your personality after a certain period. You can consciously change your personality with a good book. 

2. Meet New People And Explore

People can change you for the better or the worst. It depends on the person. If you are hanging out with people who do not provoke you to become a better version of yourself, people who are holding you down, or people who throw shade, consider moving on. Even if these people are friendly or helpful, there is always room to go out and meet new people. 

This is especially true if you meet someone from another background or culture. Every person holds a universe inside. When meeting someone new, you have a chance to not only learn from them, but doors to their country, values, and cultures also open up and can inspire you. 

Sometimes people have such a considerable effect on our personalities that we don’t even realise how much we have absorbed until we imitate their behaviour. This is the reason you must surround yourself with people whose personalities are inspiring; they are the ones who read between the lines and educate you.

3. Attend Seminars And Talks By Influencers

We all want to live a successful and happy life. We are in awe of people who are successful. We want to listen to what they preach. In reality, they are just doing things we choose to ignore as mundane. They haven’t done anything out of the ordinary to be where they are.

When you listen to them, you’ll observe how mundane things have an impact on our personalities. For instance, most successful people stress waking up early, some ask you to write down your goals on a piece of paper to give it meaning or have clear plans about your future. All of this is stimulating a change in you to stay motivated and focused. When you keep listening to what they have to say, you gradually notice how their words have wriggled into your subconscious mind and changed you. 

4. Come Out Of Your Comfort Zone

The one bold step anyone can take is to challenge themself. No one can change their personality until they want to. 

Your comfort zones, fears, or limitations have kept you from exploring this world. Every risky step in life is worth it. Whether you succeed or fail, you will always have something to learn, and there is nothing better than failure to redirect you and make your personality more robust and resilient. With age, you will confront every test in life because you will not be what you were ten years ago.

5. Understand That It Is What It Is

One of the most peaceful things in life is when you realise that things happen regardless of how much you want to prevent or change it. When you stop chasing happiness and settle for what the present has to offer, you can save yourself from several touches of melancholy. 

You need to come to terms with life, and you will observe how many useless things were holding you back. This revelation will revamp you in ways that you would have never thought possible because the bigger picture becomes much clearer and it gives you the liberty to live your life without worrying.

Final Word 

Always be open to changes. If your personality can redesign itself with age and time, why stick to the dull life and the old you? Become fearless and search for ways that can bring out the positivity in you. You can read more at shoescentric.com.

Help Us Repaint the Sunnyside Piazza

Since 2001, Sunnyside neighbors have come together to re-paint a sunflower at the intersection of SE 33rd and Yamhill. Sunnyside Piazza is Portland’s second oldest intersection repair project, which was organized by residents, originally in partnership with City Repair. Being neighbors of the intersection, Portland Street Art Alliance (PSAA) has managed the annual repainting activities since 2012. This year, the Sunnyside Neighborhood Association (SNA) is partnering with PSAA to spearhead the project and carry the torch for bringing back the neighborhood landmark. We are asking our community to help support the framework of this project by applying for the permits, purchasing paint, and other expenses that will occur. The SNA and PSAA would be very appreciative of your contribution to our GoFundMe fundraiser. You can donate directly via https://www.gofundme.com/f/sunnyside-piazza or via the SNA website homepage. Follow the Sunnyside Piazza Facebook page for up-to-date details and ways to get involved.

SNA April Notes and May Plans

Police Oversight, Building Design, and Welcoming a New Board Member

The April SNA general meeting continued last month’s discussion on building design and police oversight, endorsing documents on both topics. Johanna Brenner from the Portland Metro People’s Coalition and Sarah Kowaleski, Coalition Organizer at Jobs with Justice fielded questions relevant to their March request for the SNA to endorse a letter recommending specific language in the PPB contract. (Please see the related article in the March newsletter and read the letter at www.uniteoregon.org/policing. The SNA voted to endorse the letter. Heather Flint Chatto continued the discussion about building design in the neighborhood, especially along Hawthorne Blvd. and Belmont St. As in the March meeting, a principal focus was the PDX Main Street Design Guidelines, which you can find at  www.pdxmainstreets.org/designguidelines. These guidelines are aimed at improving the fit between new infill and old buildings. Among Heather’s main points was that good design is key to increasing density. Buildings can be built taller when they fit in well with the existing pattern. The SNA voted to adopt the Hawthorne special buildings list and the Main Street Design Guidelines for Hawthorne. The SNA also endorsed a letter to the City Council advocating for Main Street design-specific standards and for parity in design review with downtown. An example of design parity is when a specific building height triggers design review. The board voted to elect Vincent Dawans as a board member, replacing Sunia Gibbs, who recently resigned. Vincent has done wonders as SNA Clean-Up Coordinator and we look forward to working more with him. We thank Sunia for her service. Please note the announcement of our Annual Board elections on July 8th and consider running.

SNA Annual Board Election July 8th

The Annual Election for SNA Board members will be held July 8, 2021 at 7 p.m.. Like last year, we will be outside SE Uplift (3534 SE Main St.), both masked and physically distanced. Board terms are 2 years, with about half the seats open each year. Five of the nine board seats are open and at least one current board member is not pursuing reelection.

Membership is open to anyone 18 years of age or older who is either: 1) A legal resident of Sunnyside, 2) An owner of real property within Sunnyside, or 3) The designated representative of a business, school, church, or non-profit in Sunnyside. All members can vote and serve as board members. Members may declare their own candidacy or be nominated by another member. Those that declare or accept nomination by June 10th – the meeting prior to the annual meeting – will be announced to the membership by the Board of Directors. Nominations can be made from the floor at the Annual meeting provided that the nominee is a member and is willing to serve if elected. You have to be present at the Annual meeting to vote (secret paper ballot) but need not be present to be elected. Candidates will briefly introduce themselves before the vote.

Emergency Preparedness and the SNA Board Meeting

The Other Emergency, an earthquake, that is…

For many of us in the emergency preparedness world, this pandemic is ‘practice’ for the BIG ONE. That is not to downplay in any way the seriousness of our current world issues. This is to say that, due to our training, both as professionals and volunteers, we were a bit calmer at the onset of the pandemic as we reviewed and revised our own preparedness efforts to meet the current challenge. This work and planning is ongoing. In the big picture, it is best to prepare and then improvise as needed.

Working at the micro-neighborhood level, it’s my job to get my neighbors as prepared as possible, having offered training, materials, workshops and tips over the years. This is hard work, but worth the effort.

Let me walk you through a very good scenario that I hope can take place after a major disaster in my neighborhood. After the event, when I have made sure my home and family are okay and it is safe to do, I plan to walk through my neighborhood and check in on my neighbors. I know most of them by name and by sight, and know they have enough food and water to last for two weeks. They all have a shelter-in-place plan that is activated and are keeping themselves as safe as possible, knowing that it is possible that we will be without any emergency services for the immediate future.

As we are able, neighbors help neighbors nearby. 

Those with radio communication skills like ham operators will be able to share news and critical information when cell phones and the internet are down. There are many licensed ham operators in the Sunnyside neighborhood.

We are calm and do the best we can because we all prepared ahead of time.

We prepare, and then we improvise.

Where are you on the preparedness continuum? Start where you are and keep going!