Saturday, July 17, 2010

on making differences

When we entitled and blessed ones finally meet the Needy, I hope there are no more big screens or sweatshops. I hope we learn to think.

When Love wins, I hope there is no 'us' and 'them' anymore, just people who need one another, who need community.

I hope we learn to love more than just our money and our shopping malls. I hope 'success' is not equated with 'excess.'

I hope we find our conscience dictating what we buy and who and where it comes from.

Can we learn that nothing is every really 'thrown away?' Can we learn to be responsible consumers in a world dictated by mass production?

I hope we learn endless love and compassion for those outside ourselves... and I hope it makes a difference.

Things you and I can do today to be more awesome:

-Read the tags on the clothes and shoes you buy. If it's made outside of the U.S. or doesn't have a Fair Trade label, don't take the chance it was made by someone compensated unfairly.

-Visit a thrift store instead of a mall.

-Shop local, support local farmers.

-Buy coffee that is grown fairly and sustainably... Starbucks is actually making incredible strides to better their corporation and make a difference.

-Plant your own vegetables and watch them grow.

-Recycle. It seems trivial, but it adds up.

-Walk around your neighborhood (or even just outside on your own street) and pick up garbage.

-Find friends and come up with $25 to fund a microfinance loan and change a woman's life in the developing world. Watch their progress as they pay it back and make a difference locally.

-Ride a bike or take the bus. Turn off lights. Hang your clothes to dry. Start to care about energy and where it comes from.

-Get inspired by watching this:

Take victories in the small differences we all make. Be proud of what you can do.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

on seattle

I love Seattle. I am falling in love with my life here.

I love our crazy, creaky, cobwebbed house filled with a myriad of ten interesting characters. I love that my front yard is like a rain forest with colors that are rich and dense. I even love the tacky, waist-high lawn ornament set of plastic penguins. They are more than slightly reminiscent of trailer trash, but all of the members in our household constantly move them to locations that are meant to stir up laughs in whoever sees them. Previous locations include the roof, up in a tree, in the front seat of someone's car, and in a hammock. This changes hourly. I love trying to explain our roommates to other people (Normal Steve, Pregnant Kendra, Adopted Woody, Crazy Don, Absent Terry, etc). I love most of my roommates and they have become friends.

I love my flower and vegetable garden. It took less than a day to turn the flower beds into something beautiful, earthy and fresh. I didn't wear gloves. I thought the naked earth would bother me, but I found everything interesting. Moving a rock and seeing what life is living under it; ripping up weeds and planting flowers with my bare hands.

I love driving home south on I-5 on a clear day to see Mount Rainier, majestic and sexy and alone on the horizon. This brings me to loving trees, and mountains, and saltwater scented air, and all of the above dancing with the skyscrapers and civilization. I love my job, and feeling appreciated, and getting paid for working hard.

I love neighborhoods that have character and individuality like Fremont, Capitol Hill, and Belltown. I love walking down Broadway and people-watching. I love Metsker's Maps in Pike Place. I love that in one month I can attend free art festivals, block parties, Iranian Film Festivals, a Pride Parade and dozens of Couchsurfing events. I love that we are in a place where we can open up our humble place to travelers and seekers. I love the sustainability and the mentality, the beautiful bohemians, the beats, the poets, the artists.

I love that I am 10 minutes from the beach at Golden Gardens, where we can build a fire and watch it grow; dip our toes in the waves and watch the sun fall behind the Olympic Mountains that are jagged, ancient, and real. This has been and will be my summer - inviting those wandering without a fire to come and join our own. Sharing music, stories, fire spinning and laughter with strangers that become part of our story.

I am starting to fall in love with my story again, and that is a good and lovely thing.