Viewing entries posted in June 2014

June 30th Meeting

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This was the last meeting of the Toastmasters year (July 1st - June 30th), and we ended it with pizazz at Angela's at the Crosswalk. Amid laughter and delicious appetizers, we celebrated our individual and club accomplishments of the past year.

Our speakers tonight were Larry and Chris. Larry gave us these three tips to stay focused and be more productive: maintain a clean and organized environment, eliminate distractions, and create a schedule using time blocks.

Chris told us how his time in Toastmasters helped him excel during a recent speech to hundreds of colleagues. Some of the helpful speaking tips he's learned include making eye contact and focusing on delivering a line to one person if you get nervous, consciously focusing your points to different areas of the audience to prevent pacing, and sharing personal stories to keep your audience entertained and engaged.

Allison invited us all to play fun speaking games for table topics tonight, including having a conversation using only questions, creating definitions for made-up words, and trying to fit unusual words into a conversation in a natural and playful way. 

We aspired (WOTD) to have an educational, fun, and meaningful meeting to end the year, and we succeeded!

Three special awards were given tonight!

Rookie of the Year: Durai K.
Toastmaster of the Year: Mark R.
Toastmaster of the Month (June): Janak P.

Ribbon Winners

Best Speaker: Chris J.
Best Evaluator: Jeff W.
Best of the Big 3: Allison B.
Best Table Topics Speaker: Shiny W. 
5-Star Helper: Mickey B.
Sparkplug: Allison B.

June 16th Meeting

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Meeting Recap

The meeting got started off with an invocation by Mickey beseeching all to believe in themselves. He encouraged everyone through his personal toastmaster experience of the power of self confidence and trust. Stephanie, the toastmaster for the meeting talked about hobbies, the theme for the meeting. Citing her own hobby of gardening, Stephanie detailed the many blessings of taking up a hobby that can be stimulating, nurturing and rewarding mentally and physically.

Wen was the first speaker and his speech was titled – where am I from. Using slide presentations and other facts about his background, Wen discussed his quest to unearth his ancestry and the interesting paths that quest took him through. In the end, Wen came to the conclusion the famous book of common prayer referred to as - dust to dust, earth to earth, ashes to ashes – as he said , “ My place is placeless with a trace that is traceless “. For the final speech of the meeting, Max spoke about – My grandfathers’ Ice cream. Max narrated another story of touching love from his vast repertoire of deep personal experiences. Max told the story of a young woman at a toastmaster meeting in a prison, who shared her joy and remembrances of her grandfather every time she ate an ice cream. Max’s recounting of the young woman’s feelings for her grandfather added a new dimension to the word love.

Table topic master, Lisa had come very prepared to discuss the subject of hobbies. She posed thought provoking and amusing questions about hobbies that ended up revealing a lot about club members and their hobbies. A gamut of hobbies was discussed and members had a relaxed (WOTD) feeling doing it.

The meeting ended with club president Allison, reminding everyone about the membership drive meeting on June 30.

Ribbon Winners
Best Speaker: Max R, DTM
Best Evaluator: ---
Best of the Big 3: Lisa S, ACB
Best Table Topics Speaker: Jyo P, DTM
5-Star Helper: Susan B, TM
Sparkplug: Mark R, TM

June 9th Meeting

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Meeting Recap

Stephanie was the invocator for the meeting. She spoke about the joys of summer and the many outdoor things one can do in the Dallas metro area. Dean, the toastmaster for the meeting expanded on what summer, the theme for the meeting, is all about. Dean talked about how summer activities are so special and uplifting after a long bout of winter hibernation. He said it is the season when people are able interact with each other more and travel is a much anticipated endeavour. In the spirit of the meeting joke master Jyo brought laughter and cheers to get the meeting rolling.

For the first speech, Sophia gave everyone an insight on the nuances of travel planning. In her speech, planning your vacation, Sophia elaborated various steps one can take to prudently spend on vacation trips without sacrificing the quality. She cited her current summer travel plans and shared the steps she has taken to accrue savings. In an entertaining speech titled –Body language in different countries – Bahman demonstrated the intent and impact of body gestures while speaking in different countries. Particularly amusing were similar gestures in different countries that had diametrically opposite meanings with dire consequences. Bahman’s speech highlighted how, in larger life, sometimes well intended gestures can cause problems devoid (WOTD) of understanding.

With extended time available, table topics master Sarah really stepped up to the “lectern”. She had well prepared thematic questions for all the table topics participants, resulting in a very lively meeting. The evaluators did an outstanding job in providing a positive and constructive feedback to the prepared speakers. The meeting ended with club president Allison, reminding everyone about the Annual Club End-of-Year Event on June 30. The club also named Rick G as the Toastmaster for the Month for May. Congratulations, Rick.

Ribbon Winners
Best Speaker: Bahman D, ACB
Best Evaluator: Rick G, ACB
Best of the Big 3: Sarah W, CC, ALB
Best Table Topics Speaker: Melanie R, TM
5-Star Helper: Mickey B, CC
Sparkplug: Jyo P, DTM

June 2nd Meeting

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Meeting Recap

The meeting started off with Sarah’s inspiring invocation. Toastmaster for the meeting was Mike Tatachar. The theme for the meeting was -Don’t mind..its the brain. To illustrate the intertwining of the mind and the brain, Mike referenced a movie – Transcendence, which he had seen recently. Mike shared the fascinating movie story of how the brain of the protagonist was captured digitally just before he dies and uploaded into the internet. When this image became belligerent, it had to be destroyed by a virus that ultimately takes the entire internet down. The Joke master Stephanie had tickled everyone’s funny bone with joke about Gore, Bush and Clinton.

The first of the prepared speeches began with Bahman talking about – Iran/ Iraq war. Bahman clearly layed out the basic facts about the two countries and gave us all a firm background of the event. Bahman, then proceeded to describe the unbelievable loss of lives during the war in both countries that was the direct result of the ambitious adventure of the despotic ruler of Iraq. Brahman’s slide presentation was comprehensive with lots of data and numbers. In his very poignant speech – A hospital Visit – Patrick had everyone tugging to their hearts. Patrick shared his story of visiting his very sick neighbor in the hospital that profoundly changed his life. In spite of grueling difficulties the dying neighbor had faced throughout his life, he conveyed to Patrick, with painstaking gestures that he had a good life because he was loved. That singular statement moved everyone in the audience. The final speech – The World would be a better place to live if .. – by Lisa was emotional indeed. Lisa shared her deeply personal experience with a health issue and how she battled back to successfully overcome it. In spite of such a difficult situation, Lisa managed to articulate how each one of us can play a small constructive part that could benefit the world immensely. Table Topics master, Janak parlayed the WOTDpsychosomatic, into entertaining questions and fun responses.

Ribbon Winners
Best Speaker: Patrick M, CC
Best Evaluator: Hugh D, DTM
Best of the Big 3: Mickey B, CC
Best Table Topics Speaker: Jeremy (guest)
5-Star Helper: Brian T, ACB
Sparkplug: Stephanie M, CC