The Satisfaction of Doing It Yourself


DIY pic

Paul Andrew is a North Grafton, Massachusetts-based writer who concentrates in public policy. Outside of his work in North Grafton, Paul Andrew enjoys taking a break to build and create using his hands.

For many people, there is nothing like being able to take out the tools and fix things around the house. With so many resources available online, DIY (do-it-yourself) is easier and more popular than ever. Forbes Magazine calls home improvement a growth industry, citing the remarkable expansion that retailers Lowe’s and Home Depot have experienced in the last 10 years. This is one industry that seems not only to have grown but thrived during the recession as people have made an art out of stretching their home improvement budget.

Despite the occasional headache, DIY projects offer a sense of satisfaction as well as a light touch on the pocketbook. From quick fixes to more in-depth projects like replacing a fence or renovating an old barn, for many individuals there are few things as rewarding as a job well done.


Basic Exercises for Runners

Basic Exercises for Runners  pic
Basic Exercises for Runners

A writer and specialist in economic and trade policy, Paul Andrew lives in North Grafton, Massachusetts. An active member of his North Grafton community, Paul Andrew contributes to local organizations like the police department and the Pine Street Inn. He also regularly runs in cross-country and 5k events.

Successfully running any significant distance can be a challenge for even the most experienced athletes. However, by performing exercises designed for runners, athletes can get the most out of their run while minimizing the risk of injury.

Squats. Designed to work many running-specific muscles, including hamstrings, quads, and glutes, squats can be beneficial even without using weights. First, stand straight with your feet an equal distance apart, at about hip distance. In a sitting position, bend your knees approximately 90 degrees, and return to a standing position. Do about 12 squats, increasing repetition or adding weights as they become easier.

Core exercises. A series of short exercises to strengthen your back and abdominal muscles, core exercises can be done two or three times for 30 seconds each. One exercise, the plank, begins with you lying flat on your stomach with your forearms and toes tucked under your body. Rise so that your weight is supported by your forearms and toes, keeping your back straight. You can also alternate with one forearm and the side of one foot by doing a side plank.

Lunges. From the traditional forward lunge to the challenging reverse lunge, this exercise strengthens your legs and increases the flexibility of your hips. For the forward lunge, begin in a standing position and step forward until your knee is over, but not past, your ankle. Slowly lower yourself until your other knee touches or comes close to the floor. Repeat with the other leg.

The Innbassadors for Pine Street Inn

Pine Street Inn pic
Pine Street Inn

Paul Andrew, North Grafton-based public policy expert and writer, is affiliated with several nonprofit organizations and charities. Paul Andrew gives charitable donations to many Grafton organizations, including the Grafton Police Department, various organizations for Veterans, and Pine Street Inn.

The 2015 Worcester Firefighters 6k Race

Worcester Firefighters 6k Race  pic
Worcester Firefighters 6k Race

A resident of North Grafton, Massachusetts, Paul Andrew has built a successful career as a public policy specialist and writer through work with government entities and prominent international companies. Outside of his professional pursuits, Paul Andrew enjoys running in fundraising marathons in North Grafton and beyond, and he recently took part in the Worcester Firefighters 6k Race .

Every year, Worcester, Massachusetts, holds a three-part Tour de Worcester race series for participants in both walking and running events. For the past 15 years, city leaders have hosted the 6k race in remembrance of the six firefighters lost in the 1999 Worcester Cold Storage Fire. Since its inception, the race has raised more than $500,000 for non-profits such as Community Harvest Project and National Education for Assistance Dog Services (NEADS).

On June 14, 2015, the annual Worcester Firefighters 6k began at Institute Park with a kickoff featuring music from the Worcester Firefighter Pipes and Drums. Held in honor of the retiring Fire Chief Gerard A. Dio, the race attracted about 1,500 runners and a number of prominent local leaders. After completing the race, participants joined local residents for a block party celebration that featured a silent auction, food, and live music. Overall, the 2015 race raised an impressive $600,000 to benefit the supported charities.

Top Cultural Locations in Europe

Corfu Island, Greece pic
Corfu Island, Greece

Based in North Grafton, Massachusetts, Paul Andrew balances responsibilities as a public and economic policy advisor with his role as a white paper writer for a number of non-profit organizations. In his free time, Paul Andrew enjoys traveling outside of his North Grafton community, particularly to the many unique cultural locations across Europe. A continent steeped in history, Europe is home to numerous locations that captivate visitors with local culture and scenic destinations. When planning a trip to Europe, tourists often flock to a few consistently popular locations.

Corfu Island, Greece
Homer first mentioned Corfu (then known as Phaecia) in The Odyssey, naming it as the place where Odysseus’ shipwrecked during his travels. Corfu has been a historic landmark since Corcyrans founded it in the 8th century and established it as the center of educational and artistic activity for the entire Mediterranean. The famous Corfu Town is popular along with plentiful olive groves.

Hallstatt, Austria
The oldest village in Austria, Hallstatt lies between the tall Dachstein Mountains and the picturesque Salzkammergut Lake Region. For thousands of years, the village has served as a prominent location in Europe’s salt trade. With baroque-style homes nestled among the mountains and an adjacent lake, modern-day Hallstatt is one of the world’s most photographed locations.

Cinque Terre, Italy
Located among steep cliffs on the coast of Italy, Cinque Terre features five fishing villages within its borders. Its local history dates back to its founding in 643 BCE, when residents hid from barbarians along the rocky coastline. Many of the area’s historic castles and churches still stand today and attract travelers. The rich culture has made it a UNESCO World Heritage site for nearly two decades.

Traveling the World to Learn the About the Past and Build the Future

From his home in North Grafton, Paul Andrew addresses topics of concern to policymakers at all levels, especially in the area of economics. In addition to writing white papers, he prepares presentations which he delivers to government and other leaders in the United States and worldwide. One of his recent presentations, concerning trade policy, was made to the international Trade-in-Services Group, headquartered in Switzerland. Additionally, Paul Andrew has counseled several Caribbean nations regarding proposals for the formation of a consolidated economy, and has participated in numerous political campaigns in the United States.

Of the various activities that Paul Andrew engages in to clear his mind and relieve stress, travel is one of his favorites. He has frequently left North Grafton to travel worldwide, and wherever he goes he has found sites of historical significance. There are numerous destinations he enjoys, but he particularly prefers Europe because so many of its historic structures and artifacts have been preserved.

Another noteworthy characteristic of European travel is the proximity of nations and cultures. In Europe, a great variety of people share a continent about half the size of the United States. Therefore, it’s possible to experience markedly different societies in a matter of days or even hours.

While Europe may provide travelers with an appreciation for the history of Western civilization, Paul Andrew also loves visiting Asia because of the strong sense of the future he encounters there. When visiting the vibrant and teeming locales of Southeast Asia, or Asian cities like Beijing, travelers feel they are in the epicenter of a construction zone with the future being built all around them.