Better Homes and Garden Radio

Jean Robb

Volunteer your remarketable gifts and become more marketable!

Volunteer and Market Yourself…Remarkably

“Remarkable Marketable Mehelps you share your remarkable gifts volunteering, making you more marketable along the way.

By Jean Robb

I didn’t have the best childhood. We didn’t have much, so if you needed something you had to find a way to get it. I started working at 11 years old selling candy door to door. I know very scary right, but at 11 years old all I knew was I had to sell a certain amount of candy before I could go home. When I knocked on a door, out came my foot and I didn’t move it until you bought a box of candy. The skills I learned from my difficult childhood, (my lemons) really became a blessing (my lemonade).

I learned at a really young age that persistence will open many doors. As an adult I have walked out on a stage with a tiger after Zig Ziglar and talked to over 2,000 people about overcoming their fears. I know you must be thinking…a tiger? I have volunteered for over 15 years with big cat sanctuaries and have learned you can do something you really love while helping others in remarkable ways. In today’s economy you hear lots of people say they can’t find a job. So what happens?

The longer you’re out of work, you start to lose your contacts. You’re not keeping up with the day-to-day changes in your trade. You’re simply out of the loop. The longer you’re in this position the more the fear sets in. What if I can’t find a job? I have so much to offer, how do I get someone to talk to me? Well as you can see, fear can really take a hold of you, it makes you feel like a deer in the headlights. How do you overcome these things?

First off, STOP listening to the FEAR and STOP making EXCUSES. Look, I’ve made many of the same excuses when I’ve let fear be a part of my life. I now realize that the answer to overcoming the fear is to replace it with remarkable things you can be proud of. Instead of asking why would anyone want to hire me, ask yourself why not me?

After volunteering you could say. Look at the change I’ve made in the lives of others. Look what I’ve learned along the way. Look at the skills I’ve been taught while helping others. Look at the great people I’ve met. They’ve seen first hand the type of passion I put into any job I take on. So how will this work? I have made a commitment to bring you a volunteering opportunity at least once a week. The process of volunteering can be more complicated than people may think.

Email me your news. I have included in each story all the information I received and the direct contacts to make it really easy for you to get your foot in the door.Network, Network, Network” See how you can use that experience to build your resume. Most of all how did you feel about helping others today.

My goal is to get you to share with all of us your experience. Think about how much we can learn from each other. Please email me your pictures and story to so I can post them each day. I will add the trademarks, video and links for you.

Jean Robb is a real estate agent in the Dallas – Fort Worth area who is committed to promoting the importance of volunteering for your community.We have the infrastructure in place with the best real estate team in North Texas, and the process for you and I, together can “give back” to those in need without costing you an extra dime. It’s a win/win for both of us. When you contact me, just mention this page and I'll donate 5% of my commission to any non-profit you want to help!

After reading the above information ask yourself “why would I choose any other realtor”?

Click on the logo located on the sidebar for the story you have an interest in reading.

Each story is interactive. Just scroll over and click on the links in the story to get all the information you'll need for that non profit. Some links will appear as a blank spot in the story. Just scroll over it to activate the link.

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I make my living as a Realtor. It allows me the opportunity to stay involved with so many charities. If you're in need of a great Realtor please go to

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened.Robin Huffman takes a leap from conventional humanity and our daily contention with jobs, traffic, stress, etc., to being a full-time volunteer preserving wildlife in general
 Click on the link above to see the Peaceful Portraits main page 

This story comes to me from a very sweet friend of mine Jimi Bingham. Robin Huffman, a few years ago expressed an interest in big cats that I work with. I had no idea what a sweet and beautiful soul she was. I'm so excited to introduce you to her talent as an artist and her gift for giving. I posted the video above of Robin Williams and the gorilla Koko. It's such an example of the gift we get when we reach out and make a connection with animals. I think this story will inspire you to find your gift and follow your passion.

An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language.
Martin Buber 

Peaceful Portraits

Art for Wildlife Conservation by Robin Huffman

My Mission

My entire life I have loved animals, and I wish to honor them. Being in their presence, and working to protect and nurture them, is a privilege and a passion. Beyond that, I find it fulfilling and peaceful to pay homage by studying their faces and capturing their essence in my artwork. In every way I can, I want to serve them.
After all, it is we humans who must be their voice in the world.

Have you ever gazed into the eyes of a gorilla?  It is like looking at the face of God.  It’s always seemed to me as if they know all the secrets of the universe and they’re not telling the humans.  It was sitting with these gentle giants in the jungle, along with experiencing unconditional unbridled love by the baby monkeys in my care, that enabled me to become still enough to let this artistic gift flow from my heart and mind through my brush to the canvas.

photo by Guy Evron

It begins....  

Our family moved virtually every year when I was growing up - to vastly different cultures each time. Dad was a Navy man. We were either saying hello to strangers, or saying goodbye to new friends. Always feeling like a stranger in a strange land, animals were my solace, my closest friends.   Throughout my childhood, it was mostly limited to domestic types - from cats and dogs to ducks, geese, chickens, horny toads, snakes and rabbits.
The exotics

As a young adult I sought out ways I could get closer to the magnificent exotic creatures that fascinated me.  So I went to Kenya twice and helped build a safari camp there in 1989. On that dream of a trip I had the privilege of staying at the camp of George Adamson (of "Born Free" fame), and got to play with three 8-month old orphaned lions he was raising.  It was one of the highlights of my life.  Only 5 months later George was murdered by Somali bandits in a raid on his camp.   
Navy seals

While living in Laguna Beach, I volunteered at a local seal and sea lion reserve.  They sheltered the sick and the injured young elephant seals, harbor seals and sea lions which appeared up and down the Southern California coast.  For those who were too weak or who had forgotten how to eat, we pureed their fish, adding vitamins and salt and then feeding them through a tube.  Anyone for a herring smoothie?
Lions and tigers and ........LIGERS, "Oh my!"

A few years ago I wished to leave Boston but didn't know where to go; the deliberating in my mind was maddening.  So I took the summer off from work and didn't think about it at all. I had seen an animal show at a Renaissance Faire on the Cape which planted the idea in my head. After 9 months of requesting to volunteer, I was accepted at a private big cat reserve in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  In return for laboring 14 hours a day 7 days a week and sharing a trailer with no running water, I was able to observe at close proximity lions, tigers, ligers (a male lion crossed with a female tiger) and baby bears, and eventually allowed to frolic with their African elephant and 14 baby tigers.
On the wings of eagles

In southern Utah I had the opportunity to briefly study falconry and hawking, and learned that I was not prepared for the commitment of actually owning a bird of prey.  But it was a fascinating experience; I got to hike up to abandoned eagles' nests, and hold a falcon and a golden eagle.  Falcons can dive up to 200 mph, and eagles have 600 pounds of crushing power in their talons.  Wow!
Primates - the magnificent innocents

In the summer of 2007 I had the miraculous good fortune to serve as a volunteer at the Ape Action Africa, a sanctuary in Central Africa for over 200 orphaned primates.  In addition to communing with gorillas, baboons and chimpanzees, I had the privilege of being a surrogate parent to three baby monkeys who made me laugh all the time. 

Volunteering...Volunteering has had immense benefits - some I never would have predicted. I am
painting now, for example, because I'd been volunteering and the opportunity
arose. Because of giving my time, I discovered the miracles of infant monkeys.
I highly recommend it - following your passion and being a contribution in
whatever way makes sense for you. But so many other people have said it
more eloquently than I could. Here are a few quotes below:

I don't know what your destiny will be, but the one thing I know;
the only ones among you who will be really happy will have
sought and found how to serve.
Albert Schweitzer 
  My art story ...

The year 2007 held a real surprise for me.  I discovered painting!   And I loved  it!  I knew I was artistic and could draw; my whole childhood was spent sketching and coloring, trying to capture on paper the fantasy fairytale landscapes in my head.   Our family moved virtually every year.  The only constants (besides my family) were the magical places inside my head and the love and comfort of my animals as I navigated through unfamiliar surroundings and people.

As a teenager and young adult, I mostly did crafts.   At 12 I took an oil painting class.  In college I majored in interior design, something I’d wanted to do since I was a young teen (I believe it was still springing from my desire to recreate the landscapes and environments of my childhood dreams).   I attended the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where the interior design specialty was in the art department.  So I did drawings, pencil, marker, and pastels - primarily drawings of interiors and furniture - and I built models.  It was satisfying to come up with creative uses of materials.  Once I had to portray some squishy Italian leather lounge seating and ended up making them out of decorator icing and then painting them, since I also knew how to decorate cakes.

During my entire adulthood I rarely touched pen to paper for art except interior design sketches, although I still did crafts on occasion.  The last few years, with the advent of computers and my career transforming to project management, I even stopped doing crafts.   Moving to New York City in 1999, life held such a whirlwind of activities in the city that never sleeps that it has seemed impossible to pause long enough to do anything that requires stillness.

Thankfully, in New York, an inspired animal-loving man, Bob King, who owns Humanscale furniture company, created an annual “Faces in the Wild” fundraising animal mask auction within the interior design industry to raise money for World Wildlife Fund.  My first mask was Arthur, in honor of the magnificent lion I’d had a chance to hang out with in Myrtle Beach.  The following year I did a cheetah, and the third year Ishmael the gorilla was “born."

Doing the masks for this auction not only reawakened my love of doing art and crafts, but also made me fall in love with gorillas for which I am eternally grateful.

In 2007, acting upon the desire to get close to gorillas, I spent 3 months volunteering at Ape Action Africa in Cameroon (formerly CWAF). While there, I had a chance to gaze at gorillas close up and raise infant monkeys. And due to unforeseen circumstances at the 2,600-acre reserve, there was an opportunity to replace and expand on all the signage in the park. In the process, I discovered I am a portrait artist. I had not painted in over 40 years. All I had at hand were primary colors of gloss enamel house paint, 1/8” plywood, and two brushes for the faces. There is no question in my mind that my work turns out as detailed as it does because of the inspiration of these beatific creatures.

Mowgli 2012
Title:  Mowgli (2012)
Subject:  juvenile female vervet monkey
Dimensions:  10x15
Medium:   water-based latex on canvas
Ghosty 2012
Name: Ghosty (2012)
Subject:  elderly male vervet monkey
Dimensions:   12X12
Medium: water-based latex on canvas
Skunkey 2012
Name:   Skunkey (2012)
Subject:   elderly male vervet monkey
Dimensions:   12x12
Medium:  water-based latex on canvas
Regus 2012
Name:   Regus (2012)
Subject:  male vervet monkey
Dimensions:   12x12
Medium:  water-based latex on canvas

Do You see Me 1
Title: Do You See Me?
Subject: young female mandrill Maggie
Dimensions: 9 x 27
Medium: water-based enamel paint on masonite

Do You see Me 2

Title: Bigger than Life Diva (2010)
Subject: moustache monkey
Dimensions: 32 x 40
Medium: water-based enamel paint on masonite

Kelsey 2012
Title: Kelsey (2012)
Subject:  male vervet monkey
Dimensions:  12x12
Medium: water-based latex on canvas

Title: Alfie chowing down (2010) (detail of sloth nursery sign)
Subject: two-fingered sloth
Dimensions: 22 x 30
Medium: water-based enamel paint on wood

Title: Athena (2010) (detail of sloth nursery sign)
Subject: three-fingered sloth
Dimensions: 22 x 30
Medium: water-based enamel paint on wood

Title: Ishmael (2007)
Subject: adult gorilla
Medium: florist foam, papier mache, leather, palm fibers, black sand, glass beads, grains

Title: Arthur (2005)
Subject: lion
Medium: florist foam, papier mache, grains, black sand, glass beads, broom corn, wheat

Title: Nanga (2010)
Subject: young chimp
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood
(after a photo by Ian Bickerstaff)

Title: Sharlo (2010)
Subject: adult male chimp
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood
(after a photo by Ian Bickerstaff)

Title: Year of the Gorilla (2009)
Subject: Western Lowland gorilla
Dimensions: 48 x 84
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood
(after a photo by Jo MacArthur)

Title: Tali (detail) (2008)
Subject: infant chimp
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood
(after a photo by Faith Davies)

Title: Supreme Mandrill (2009)
Subject: adult alpha male mandrill
Dimensions: 11x14
Medium: alkyd oil on Gessoboard

Title: Oliver (2008)
Subject: Olive baboon
Medium: alkyd oil on pressboard

Title: Yoda (2008)
Subject: infant talapoin monkey
Dimensions: 11 x 14
Medium: oil on canvas
(after a photo by Ian Bickerstaff)

Title: Simossa at Sanaga-Yong chimpanzee sanctuary (2009)
Subject: adult female chimp
Medium: oil-based enamel on metal

Title: Shufai and Appolinaire (2007)
Subject: young Western Lowland gorilla and his caregiver
Dimensions: 20 x 30
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood

Title: Nkan Daniel and Shai (2007)
Subject: two adolescent Western Lowland gorillas
Dimensions: 20 x 30
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood

Title: Adventurous Steve (2008)
Subject: trompe l'oeuil of jungle with agile mangabey
Medium: oil-based enamel on wood

Title: Christian (2007)
Subject: Cheetah
Medium: florist foam, paper mache, grains, black sand, glass beads

Many of the "peaceful" creatures featured on my website - either in photographs
or artwork - are from the Ape Action Africa sanctuary in Cameroon. If you feel
inspired to help them, and others like them, I encourage you to donate here, and
make a difference in their lives.
Wildlife conservation is an incredibly complex issue. So I also challenge you
to learn more; become an advocate. Meanwhile, supporting this primate orphanage
with your dollars is a good start!

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