Archives for December 2010
by Troy A. Sparks
GREEN BAY – There was no other way to put it for the Green Bay Packers. Their Super Bowl hopes were down to winning the final two regular season games to make the playoffs.
The New York Giants needed to beat the Packers at Lambeau Field, Dec. 26, to grab one of the two wild-card spots and knock the Packers out of the postseason. They were looking to snatch the only wild-card spot up for grabs in the NFC from the Pack. New Orleans has the inside track on the other one.
Between New York coach, Tom Coughlin, and Green Bay coach, Mike McCarthy, one of them could lose their job if the team they lead is out of the postseason.
Everything went right for Green Bay. They won the coin flip, and with 7 minutes 53 seconds left in the opening quarter, a touchdown pass from quarterback Aaron Rodgers to receiver Jordy Nelson put the Pack up 7-0.
An interception by cornerback Tramon Williams turned into another TD for Green Bay on a pass to receiver James Jones from Rodgers.
They hit the ground running with a commanding 14-0 lead.
Green Bay let New York back into the game in the second quarter. Cornerback Charles Woodson slipped on the half-frozen turf, which left receiver Hakeem Nicks wide open.
He ran down the right sideline for a TD to cut the Packer lead to 14-7. A fumble by Nelson gave the ball back to the Giants.
They turned that possession into a scoring reception from quarterback Eli Manning to Mario Manningham to tie the game at 14.
The Giants took the wind out of the sails of the green and gold and silenced the crowd.
The Pack struck back with fullback John Kuhn getting into the end zone late in the half to give Green Bay the lead for good at 21-14.
They put 10 more points on the board to take a 31-14 advantage, courtesy of a Mason Crosby field goal and a scoring reception by tight end Donald Lee.
A field goal by New York’s Lawrence Tynes cut the Packer lead to 31-17 entering the final quarter.
The crowd chanted, “Go Pack Go!” That was enough momentum for the team to drive the Giants away and run them out of town.
Kuhn (or K-o-o-o-o-n, as the fans say) scored the last points of the game with a rushing and a receiving TD. The 45-17 beat-down by the Packers knocked their opponents down like an avalanche.
“It’s a big win,” receiver Greg Jennings said. “We came out and punched them in the mouth from the start. It felt great.”
Jennings gave props to Kuhn at a time when the running game appeared dead after the bye week. Kuhn had three touchdowns in the game.
“The thing about John Kuhn is when he runs in the game, all of the fans know that he’s getting the ball. The defense knows that he’s getting the ball. He never disappoints.
That’s the beauty of John Kuhn. I told him that he’s going to be here for a long time.”
Packers Notes: Rodgers, on a second down play at the New York 21-yard line, ran 15 yards to the 6. The electrodes in his brain reminded him to slide to the ground instead of diving. The last time Rodgers dove head first after running out of the pocket at Detroit, he was hit in the head and suffered a concussion….Linebacker Desmond Bishop, who saw the ball go near the out of bounds line on a fumble by New York running back Brandon Jacobs, which was forced by linebacker Clay Matthews, slapped the ball back in bounds.
It was recovered by Nick Collins on the ground after the Giants’ Sean O’Hara tried to pick it up. “I cleaned it out,” Bishop said. “I wanted to get it so bad, and my momentum was taking me out of bounds. I didn’t want to go out of bounds. I just tipped it back and kept it in play.
Hopefully, one of our guys got (the ball), and I was fortunate enough that Nick Collins got it.”….Crosby went over 500 points in his career with three field goals in the game….The Packers wanted to erase the memory of their last game against the Giants.
Their 23-20 overtime loss in the NFC Championship Game in 2008 at Lambeau still lingered in the minds of the players who were on that team.
That loss denied the green and gold a trip to the Super Bowl that year….Before Jennings and Jones, whose lockers are next to each other, faced the media, Jones’ phone rang.
“That’s probably my grandma calling me,” Jones said. “‘Grandson, what’s wrong with you dropping that ball?’”, he said in a squeaky voice.
“It’s okay,” Jennings said, “I’m not going to beat him too bad because he had a couple of drops today.”
Jones caught four of seven passes….What could be scary for the Packers is that they can beat Chicago, Jan. 2, and still be on the outside looking in….Jennings went over the 5,000-yard mark in receiving yards.
Rodgers’ 404 passing yards in the game were the most by a Green Bay quarterback since Lynn Dickey threw for 418 at Tampa Bay in Oct. 1980.
Giants Notes: Six turnovers did the visitors in. “The thing that I told the team is there’s no way anyone wins in this league when you turn the ball over six times,” Coughlin said….The team still kept their playoff hopes alive going into the final week of the regular season, but they need Green Bay to lose.
If the two teams have the same record (both teams are 9-6), the playoff situation could be very sticky.
“We had a shot to win and get into the playoffs, but now we need some help,” Manning said.
“We need Chicago to come (to Lambeau) and beat Green Bay.”….Defensive tackle Barry Cofield said the loss to the Packers and second straight in as many weeks is frustrating.
“(The frustration) is at an all-time high,” he said. “I didn’t think it could be worse than last week (against Philadelphia).
“You can’t go out there and have bad performance after bad performance and keep saying that we will get it right. We just have a tendency not to play well enough.”
One of the most remarkable yet persistent truths regarding the Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year Holiday season is the reality of the heavy emotional toll it takes on many individuals and families.
Sure enough, towards the end of January and beginning of February, the bills from those holiday shopping sprees and the extra pounds put on from all of the holiday feasts will take an emotional toll all their own on those who may have overindulged a bit.
The fact is however that during the season of holiday cheer, many of our friends and neighbors find themselves feeling sadder, lonelier, and more depressed than they felt at any time throughout the year.
One of the best quotes ever to come from the scriptures, and possibly one of the most ignored, is that it is better to give than it is to receive.
If you want to help a friend or family member shake off those holiday blues, and find an alternative to using alcohol, prescription, or illegal drugs to numb them from their grief and stress, you should consider adding a family and friends giving tradition to your holiday activities.
There are the Children that Santa Claus Forgot, there are Coats For Kids, Food For Families, and countless opportunities to help prepare and serve holiday meals.
Additionally, there are many in hospitals and nursing homes, and even some professions where people have to work through each holiday where the delivery of some cookies, coloring books, or a stuffed animal might make the whole season brighter for someone else.
No matter how bad we think things are in our own lives, the fact always remains that there is someone else out who is worse off than you are. Giving to others in your own time of need can provide a spiritual and emotional lift like nothing else can.
Unlike alcohol or drugs, the high of knowing that you positively touched the life of someone else in need stays with you for a much longer period of time.
If you are not one of those who experience intense grief and stress during the holidays, you should go to your friend or relative and enlist them and other friends and family members in an effort to give, give, give and give to others until those holiday blues are gone, gone, gone.
Hope Street Ministry in Milwaukee provides comfortable and secure low cost housing for people recovering from drug and alcohol addictions. Hope Street staff encourage responsible living through knowledge of Jesus Christ gained within a loving but highly structured program of study, counseling and right behavior.
The staff helps residents succeed in independent living: secure job training or education, manage personal finances, maneuver through Legal or Social Services – while providing a clean, safe space to learn, to love, to live day-to-day without drugs or alcohol. Lives change and remarkable things happen through Christ: “…Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine…” Eph 3:20
2522 W Capitol Dr / 414-445-5404 / www.hopestreetministry.org
by Mandi Lindner
Gratefulness leads to benevolence as a graduate of Meta House gives back to other women and children in need.
Shirley was just a child when a male family member molested her. As a young woman she spent years in an abusive relationship, and eventually Shirley turned to alcohol and drugs to numb the pain of the abuse.
One of the things Shirley regrets from her time of substance abuse was her inability to provide her children with the Christmas they deserved. “The holidays weren’t what I would have liked them to be,” Shirley recalls, “Some of the things my kids wanted I couldn’t afford because I bought drugs instead.”
The good news is that Shirley received help for herself and for her family at Meta House. She’s been living in recovery for over 8 years, and says the holidays are now her favorite time of year. “[My kids] are happier now, I can afford more things, my girls and I cook together, we play games together – if I was high I wouldn’t be able to do that,” she says.
Shirley empathizes with women who are where she was before Meta House, and she tries to give back during the holidays. “I always feel for mothers and kids – especially those women who are still using. The only thing I’ve wanted is recovery – that’s always my Christmas gift. I try to give back so at least one kid has a good Christmas.”
Shirley is grateful for the gift she received at Meta House – the gift of recovery. To learn more about how you can give back by helping women in Milwaukee receive the gift of recovery, visit Meta House online at www.metahouse.org.
Project RETURN has been blessed to be in existence for thirty years, helping men and women returning from incarceration with their re-entry needs.
A good majority of the thousands of clients we have worked with over the past thirty years have varying degrees of mental health issues.
These issues are exacerbated by stress and stressful situations. The holidays, while joyous and happy for many are stress inducing for so many others.
Project RETURN exists to help our clients through these stressful situations in an attempt of becoming a positive, permanent member of society.
Through AODA support groups and individual counseling Project RETURN staff allow participants the opportunity to share their stressors while also providing advice on how to positively address the stress.
Whether it is loneliness, fear, anger, or depression, everyone deserves the ability to be happy and to attain piece of mind in a healthy atmosphere.
Our mission at Project RETURN is to be an active part in helping the formerly incarcerated to attain a healthy, happy holiday season and beyond.
Merry Christmas from the staff & Management of Project Return
How can the most wonderful time of the year be so difficult? The truth is the holidays are stressful for a lot of people. For those addicted to drugs or alcohol, the pressure of the holidays can exacerbate what is already a difficult situation.
The holidays can be a time of joy and renewal. We can use this time to be with family and friends. This is the time to remember the gifts recovery has given us.
I remember my 1st Christmas being sober. I was so afraid. I had not seen a Christmas without alcohol for 10 years. I had no money, I could not be with my family and bills were pilling up. I remember what my sponsor always told me, Jeff, there are 2 things in life you cannot afford, one was self-pity and the other was resentment. I had to work hard to stay away from both of these, so I made sure I was close to recovering people and those with a positive attitude. I also felt it was important to give something back so I would go to the local hospital and offer to visit with people who had no one. It became clear that I was not as bad off as I thought. I had the gift of life and the opportunity to change.
I have learned over time that Christmas is for kids and I had an obligation to in some way make there Christmas a little better. I did that by staying sober and for 20 years took my children to the hospital on Christmas Eve to visit with children who could not go home for Christmas. It has now been 33 years of sobriety and my children are 25 and 28. I couldn’t be more grateful.
Be good to yourself and good things will happen.
by Antonia A. Vann, Asha Family Services, Inc.
Domestic Violence is learned behaviors through a combination of processes, usually from the family of origin. It is learned via observation, experience, exposure, reinforcement, culture, family and community. Abusers must perceive that they can get away with it, so to enact abuse without negative consequences provides the opportunity. Violent and abusive individuals make a conscious choice to abuse based on a combination of social and psychological factors.
Domestic violence predicated by substance abuse, genetics, stress, illness, and problems in the relationship, could be contributing factors often used as excuses but definitely can exacerbate violent behaviors/tendencies. Many abusers believe they have the right to make, enforce and arbitrarily change rules and many victims routinely evaluate which rules they will follow depending on a variety of factors, such as the dangers presented, the available intervention and the likelihood of punishment to the perpetrator.
Have A Safe Holiday Season !
The Cochran Firm Wisconsin LLP, a personal injury law firm in Milwaukee, wishes everyone a happy and safe holiday season. As we celebrate the season with family and friends,
The Cochran Firm Wisconsin LLP reminds everyone not to drink and drive. If you do drink, for your safety and the safety of everyone around you, please be sure to have a designated driver.
The Cochran Firm Wisconsin LLP
309 North Water Street # Suite 160
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53202
Telephone: (414) 223-1050
For others, the holidays represent stress, anxiety, loneliness and despair; and alcohol serves as a crutch.
“The truth is, many people drink beyond what is safe without even realizing it, and fail to make a connection between their risky drinking behaviors and the negative consequences that spill into other aspects of their life,”
According to Michael Davis, president of IMPACT, a non-profit organization that provides free assessment, consultation and referral services for people concerned about themselves or a loved one.
Men should avoid drinking more than four drinks per day, and limit themselves to 14 drinks over the course of a week.
For women, three drinks a day is the maximum, not to exceed seven drinks per week. For some people, it is not safe to drink any alcohol. But – for healthy adults – exceeding these guidelines can cause a multitude of health and social problems. Risky drinkers are more likely to land in the hospital, encounter financial and legal problems, and experience personal crises such as unemployment or divorce.
Binge drinking, specifically, is associated with an increased risk of motor vehicle crash, assault, unintended pregnancy and death.
“The issue of drinking and driving does receive a lot of attention, particularly this time of year,” Davis points out. “But letting a designated driver take the wheel only guards you against one risk.”
To learn more about safe drinking levels or to access helpful resources, call IMPACT at (414)256-4808, or simply dial 2-1-1.