Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Years 2009!

Has it really been this long since I have blogged? WOW! I must be loosing it...

I'm contemplating doing a year in review...however, it might be short and sweet:

Jan. - Visited Key West, FL. with my friend, Sam for a week and lived on a boat. Craziest time of my life. First time I ever slept in an airport overnight and the first (and only time) I went to a strip club (in my defense, I didn't know it was a strip club until we got into the place).

Feb. Went an saw Spring Awakening in NYC with Julie. Met Greg Mortensen who wrote Three Cups of Tea. Which I didn't read until May when I did my road trip with my dad (we actually listened to it on tape).

March - Did a Spring Break cruise with my friend, Julie. First real experience cruise (I'm not counting the ghetto on I did in Greece last year). Went to Miami, Mexico, Grand Cayman. Almost missed our cruise and kissed a sting ray!

April - Was basically spent finishing up college. Finals, papers, projects, wrapping up extra curricular work. Lots of reflection time.

May - Graduated from COLLEGE! Went to the Bahamas with 600 of my fellow graduates. Did a 10 day cross country trip with my dad. First time we had ever hung out in my life.

June - Jade came to visit from Boston. Although a somewhat awkward visit, it was fun to show an East Coast girl and West Coast way to have fun. Really, I'm just glad our friendship survived it.

July - Went to my 9th year of Houseboat, bitter sweet since BK wasn't there with me. Learned what it was like to be a "utility player".

August - Spent two weeks visiting my dad in China and Thailand, actually rode an elephant. Like sat on her head, not in a basket on her back.

September - GOT A REAL JOB! And joined an awesome Bible study with eight wonderful ladies, an awesome leader/mentor, and a phenomenal cook. Also went to Auburn to visit BK and experience my first Div. I college football game.

October - Pretty uneventful. Saw Warren Miller's Children of Winter and adjusted to being a "working gal".

November - Still adjusting to being a working girl. Trying to learn as much as I can about sustainability. Being a Geek. Also saw Call+Response.

December - Got snowed in from the Oregon "Arctic Blast." Celebrated Christmas and had to deal with my family.

WOW! So maybe my life isn't that bad. I guess it could be way worse. Maybe I just need to travel more...

I'm super excited about 2009. I even made a New Year's Resolution. Which I've never really done before. But being a "grown" up and all. I really think I need to start taking my finances seriously. So...

My New Year's Resolution is for every pay check:
Tithe 10% and Save 20%!

What is your New Year's Resolution?

Friday, December 19, 2008

Coolest Tattoo Ever

I was killing time on MySpace today and decided to check out Adorn's newest work. Since my dad has been talking about getting a tattoo while he is visit for the holidays. And I saw this one:

I'm seriously in love with it. As many of you know (and for those of you who don't feel free to ask) I have a huge scar that runs down the side of my left leg from my butt to my knee cap from a ski accident when I was 13. I'm totally happy with my scar, I view my accident as a sort of coming of age event and it was the biggest obstacle I've ever had to overcome. But this is the coolest thing I've ever seen. People have asked me if I wanted to have my scar laser removed or covered up. NEVER! It is an awesome story and a testimony to God on how He protects me. But I might consider doing something like this...

I wonder what my parents would say...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cradle to Cradle

I just finished reading Cradle to Cradle by William McDonough and Michael Braungart, which discusses the way we make things. Instead of doing less bad, actually looking back at the re-design of a product. The first interesting thing about this "book" is not really a book, or should I say tree. It is not made of paper, but instead printed on synthetic paper and bound into a book-like format. This makes it durable and even water proof (great for the swimmer!) For someone who loves the way books smell and feel it was a little hard to get used to it, but after a couple of pages I got over it. Other cool highlights I enjoyed about this book:
  • Consider this: all the ants on the planet, taken together, have a biomass greater than humans. Ants have been incredibly industrius for millions of years. Yet their productiveness nourishes plants, animals, and soil. Human industry has been in full swing for a little over a century, yet it has brought about a decline in almost every ecosystem on the planet. Nature doesn't have the a design problem. People do.
  • The average lawn is an interesting beast: people plant it, then douse it with artificial fertilizers and dangerous pesticides to make it grow and to keep it uniform - all so that they can hack and mow what they encourage to grow. And woe to the small yellow flower that rears it head!
The author's also included steps to retool their thinking and their actions in service to an eco-effective vision:
  1. Get "free of" known culprits.
  2. Follow informed personal preferences. Prefer ecological intelligence. Prefer respect. Prefer delight, celebration, and fun.
  3. Creating a "passive positive" list. The X list. The gray list. The P list.
  4. Activate the positive (P) list.
  5. Reinvent! Single your intention. Restore. Be ready to innovate further. Understand and prepare for the learning curve. Exert intergenerational responsibility.
Another highlight (and shameless plug) about this book is that my boss is featured in it with her work with Nike and their steps to becoming more eco-effective.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


It's been a while since I've blogged. I apologize...but here are my excuses:
  1. My boss is in town this week. For the first time since I started working for her, I've seen her twice in the same week. I started working in September.
  2. I've been writing content for our new website. So I've been kinda blogging, just not publicly all week.
  3. No one gave me suggestions on what non-profits to research and write about. That's right I'm blaming all of you.
  4. I just haven't been in the blogging (or for that matter reading blogs) mood. But I'm getting out of it - can you tell?
  5. I've started going back to the gym.
  6. The holidays are coming. And I'm not celebrating Christmas and instead doing Advent Conspiracy, but I'm still attending holiday events.
That is all I can come up with for now. Maybe I'll do some floating thoughts:
  • I'm checking out a new potential job at Enviromedia, and yes this is a shameless plug. In case they find my blog. I'm in love with their website.
  • I'm a little frustrated at myself for not coming up with a cool business title and thus a new blog title. Suggestions?
  • I'm super frustrated that I can't write eloquently enough about what my business does to actually post it on a website.
  • I love that at my job I can be everything from market researcher, legal, IT, and assistant.
  • I'm super excited that Kirk (my brother) comes home tonight, Beckie (my best friend) comes home on the 17th, and Stu (my dad) comes to visit on the 21st.
  • I'm a little upset that there is not enough snow at Meadows to open. But I'm praying that this weekend will change that.
  • I'm in love with my Bible study.
  • I'm feeling more at home at Wildfire, where as of last night I became an official 6th grade girl's leader. There is something so encouraging about being prayed over which makes it seem more official. And my girls (all three of them) prayed out loud last night. That is huge for an 11 year old.
  • I think I need a new haircut.
  • My dad wants to get a tattoo over Christmas break...I'm thinking about trying to talk him into letting (aka paying for) me to get another one.
  • I was reading Jenni's blog about childhood lovely's. And realized as much as I want to be an "adult" woman, I still am not ready to give some stuff up.
  • While I am in fact an adult woman (I have the driver's license to prove it) I still get mistaken for be 16. Like at Costco, last Thursday...

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


So my December 3rd, showcase of cool non-profits is project (red). Great shopping ideas in this super cute video. Enjoy. Hopefully I'll have time later tonight to write about all the great things product (red) does.

Traci's Challenege

So my friend Traci, just challenged me to not say the "F-Word" for the entire month of December in honor of Jesus' birthday. Apparently I say it more often than I realize. So if you hear me say it. Please point it out to me. Trying to change for the good. Thanks!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

December Goal

Our church is doing Advent Conspiracy this year. And for the next 24ish days I would like to show case different non-profits that are making a difference in this world. But I need your help. Know a great organization? Tell me about it! Ideally, I would like to do one per day. To get the ball rolling:

Nike Foundation

Nike believes in the power of human potential. Both on and off the playing field. They are now applying this belief in the game of poverty. Nike tried to find a place where they could make the biggest impact and found it. Teen girls. If you invest in them, it leads to a powerful ripple effect that can not be stopped. This is the Girl Effect, unleash them from, poverty, AIDS, early childbirth and they can do amazing things.

What can you do?
  1. Give. Check out Giving Coupons for more information.
  2. Share the information. Blog about it, tell a friend about it. Join in the conversation.
  3. Volunteer. Check out this cool website, VolunteerMatch to search for your perfect volunteering opportunity.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Today is World AIDS Day

Today is the 20th anniversary of World AIDS Day.

I think it's both exciting and disappointing at the same time. Exciting that we have come a long way in 20 years, but disappointing that we still have to "celebrate" World AIDS Day to still get the message out.

I pull some statistics from today's CNN article on World AIDS Day.

  • On the first World AIDS Day, December 1, 1988, there was nearly 80,000 reported AIDS cases in the United States, thousands more were living HIV, and AIDS was reported in more that 135 countries. There was only one anti-HIV medicine in 1988, AZT. The life span of patients was measured in months.
  • In 2008, there are more than 2 dozen anti-HIV drugs, life spans can now be measures by decades. Scientifically proven prevention approaches have been deployed with great success in the US and around the world.
  • Global outreach programs, such as the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and Global Fund for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria along with nongovernment organizations have reached millions of people in low and mid-income countries.
  • 2.7 million people were infected in 2007 alone.
  • Globally 33 million people are living HIV+.
  • More than 1 million people are living with HIV in the US.
  • 56,000 people in the US are infected each year in the US.
  • In low and middle-income countries, less than 1/3 of people in need of anti-HIV therapy are receiving it.
  • 1 in 5 people at risk for HIV infection have access to prevention services.
  • In the US, more than 1/5 of people living with HIV are UNAWARE
  • One exciting concept is a pre-exposure prophylaxis or PrEP, giving a preventive doses of anti-HIV drugs to individuals who are at an increases risk of HIV infection (still in experimental strategy).
Seems like there is some hope for the hopeless. As for me, I'm going to be wearing my Bentley goes Red for Africa shirt today and probably head to Starbucks today since 5 cents of every coffee today goes to support (red). What are you doing to celebrate World AIDS Day?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

It seems fit to make list of things I'm thankful for on this Thanksgiving Day:
  • Having an amazing Savior, who loves me despite my many flaws.
  • My wonderful family from all over, Beaver, Eugene, China and the East Coast - for all their support.
  • My awesome friends (I wish more of them blogged), especially BK What?!? (today is also her 23rd birthday), Elan, Celeste, Katie and Jade.
  • My inspiring Bible study, with an awesome group of seven other ladies, genius leader Janette, and wonderful cook, Frank.
  • My cute puppy, Dainty, who isn't really a puppy, but still looks like one and doesn't at like a 10 year old lab.
  • My awesome job, with an awesome boss, Darcy Winslow, who gives me responsibility and flexibility to make my life wonderful and that this work makes me feel like I'm really making a difference in this world.
  • The fact that my mom is letting me live at home, rent free (and let me drive one of her cars).
  • My health and that of my friends and family (everyone is doing really well!)
  • OPI Nail Polish (I really need to paint my nails today)
  • My ridiculously long list of books I want/need to read - so I'm thankful for the gift of literacy I guess
  • That even though I'm broke, I'm not living in poverty and that I have the education to make a difference in the world.
  • That I graduated from Bentley College/University in May this year.
  • That my dad is coming to visit this Christmas for two weeks!
  • That my brother and I are super close for being brother and sister.
  • I'm thankful for the invention of sushi.
Maybe I can write more later - gotta go paint my nails and get ready for FOOD!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Nike ad: If You Let Me Play (1995)

Just a little blast from the past. Enjoy!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Stole this from Jenni Clayville.

You Are The Stuffing

You're complicated and complex, yet all your pieces fit together.

People miss you if you're gone - but they're not sure why.

Take the test and leave a comment letting me know What Part of Thanksgiving Are You?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Girl Effect

Yesterday I got the chance to check out a photo exhibit at Nike about the Girl Effect, the idea that changing a girls live can radically change not only her life but those who live around her, her parents, siblings, friends, and community. I've posted their video on my blog before, but if you want to see it again check it out on YouTube.

Here are some pictures from the event:

[Inside these four walls, girls learn there is something wrong with normal.]

[Let's See Some ID]

[Illiteracy Does Not Look Good On A Resume]

[...And Pregnancy Doesn't Look Good On A Little Girl]

[The Face of HIV Is Increasingly Young and Female]

[A Nice Place to Work Would Be Nice]

[The Check Is In The Mail, But It's Going To Your Brother]

[Adolescent Girls Aren't Just "Future Women"]

[Laws Were Made To Be Enforced]

[She Should Be A Statistic]

[Everyone Gets On Board Or We're All Overboard]

The Facts Don't Lie:
  • When a girl in the developing world receives seven or more years of education, she marries four years later and has 2.2 fewer children.
  • An extra year of primary school boosts girls’ eventual wages by 10 to 20 percent. An extra year of secondary school: 15 to 25 percent.
  • Research in developing countries has shown a consistent relationship between better infant and child health and higher levels of schooling among mothers.
  • When women and girls earn income, they reinvest 90 percent of it into their families, as compared to only 30 to 40 percent for a man.
  • Today, more than 600 million girls live in the developing world.
  • More than one-quarter of the population in Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean, and sub-Saharan Africa are girls and young women ages 10 to 24.
  • The total global population of girls ages 10 to 24—already the largest in history—is expected to peak in the next decade.
  • Approximately one-quarter of girls in developing countries are not in school.
  • Out of the world’s 130 million out-of-school youth, 70 percent are girls.
  • One girl in seven in developing countries marries before age 15.
  • 38 percent marry before age 18.
  • One-quarter to one-half of girls in developing countries become mothers before age 18; 14 million girls aged 15 to 19 give birth in developing countries each year.
  • In Nicaragua, 45 percent of girls with no schooling are married before age 18 versus only 16 percent of their educated counterparts. In Mozambique, the figures are 60 percent versus 10; in Senegal, 41 percent versus 6.
  • A survey in India found that girls who married before age 18 were twice as likely to report being beaten, slapped, or threatened by their husbands as were girls who married later.
  • Medical complications from pregnancy are the leading cause of death among girls ages 15 to 19 worldwide. Compared with women ages 20 to 24, girls ages 10 to 14 are five times more likely to die from childbirth, and girls 15 to 19 are up to twice as likely, worldwide.
  • 75 percent of 15- to 24-year-olds living with HIV in Africa are female, up from 62 percent in 2001.
Powerful stuff. What are you doing to help make the world a better place for girls?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

UPDATE: 50,000 Pairs in 50 Days

Today you can win an autographed copy of Seth Godin's Tribes and Anne Jackson's Mad Church Disease. For details check out Anne Jackson's blog!

Monday, November 17, 2008

New Job, New Title

So, I have this new job, which I already wrote about. I'm the only employee and it is a fun, creative job. We are ordering business cards soon and I want to have a fun/different job title and I'm wondering if anyone wants to help me come up with something or have any suggestions. Please let me know! Along with that, maybe I'll change my "Who Knows the Title of My Life" to something else.

So, if you were working for a sustainability consulting firm and you were the only employee (other than the owner/founder) what would you call yourself? I do a lot of market research and general helping (administration, business launching stuff). Plus your a pretty cool, recent college graduate girl, who is a little on the funky side.

Maybe I'll award a prize for the best job title!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Soles 4 Souls Update

I just donated for the first time today. (I know, I know - I ask you guys to donate when I haven't gotten personally involved yet myself). But I did do it today. Found out with donations over $10 you get a free Soles4Souls key chain - pretty awesome stuff. Here is the Facebook update that was sent out on Friday. Enjoy!

Also, to check on the 50,000 Pairs in 50 Days Challenge anytime click on the link.

What's up 50k in 50 day challengers? So, we had a great start but things are kind of slowing down over the last week (cricket, cricket!)

There are over 1000 people in this group and I know today is payday for many of you.

If everyone in this group just chipped in another $5 (or your first $5) that would be 2500 pairs of shoes purchased!

Or....even bigger..if everyone chipped in $10...5000 shoes would be purchased.

The power of a LOT of people doing something SMALL in order to accomplish something good.

I have to admit I'm a little nervous. We haven't quite reached 4000 shoes so it is my challenge to you this weekend to help get us to 8000 shoes by Monday!

If we all really chip in where we can and invite others we know to participate, it will be a piece of cake. Just everyone doing their part.

Happy weekend,

Friday, November 14, 2008

I think it is safe to say

...I have a "real, grown-up, post-college" JOB! I've been holding off on blogging about this but I just thought I would make it official. Just so I can actually talk more about work stuff these days.

Here it is: I'm working at a sustainability (think going green) consulting firm downtown in the Pearl! So if your ever down there, give me a call and I can show you my new pad! It is pretty exciting stuff. I'm doing a lot of market research for my boss as well as helping out with the actual launching of the new company. We've been around since September 1st. And I've actually known about the job since before that but had to play dumb for certain reasons. Anyways, my boss rocks, she has been my mentor for the last 4+ years and was my boss a Nike, when I interned there when I was just 18. Our company is called Designs for a Sustainable World or DSW for short (those are my boss' initials). As soon as we get our website up I'll post a link to it.

Another thing I would like to point out that this job is part-time right now, because my boss goes on so many speaking engagements (hopefully, I'll be able to start tagging along on those). So while she is gone, I work for another company who we share office space with called, Social Enterprises. They do events all over Portland. The next one is going to be the CRAVE Holiday Party, which benefits the Go Red For Women Foundation and is all based on sustainable and eco-friendly products. If anyone is interested in going. Just let me know.

So, what is my exciting news. Now my question for you is:

What do you do?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

CRAVE Holiday Shopping Party

Hey Everyone!
Here is an event I'm helping put on for my new part time job. Just thought you might be interested. Feel free to contact me for more information!

CRAVE Showcases the Best in Sustainable, Local Holiday Shopping on December 3rdPortland’s Largest Holiday Shopping Event Benefits Go Red for Women

Local boutiques, designers and specialty shopping will be featured as the popular CRAVE Party returns Wednesday December 3rd with their annual CRAVE Holiday Shopping Party at LUXE Autohaus, located at 410 NE 17th Avenue in Northeast Portland. All designers are required to showcase at least one sustainable, green or organic line as part of this event. The CRAVE Holiday Shopping Party will bring together the best local designers and boutiques, converting an luxury auto dealer space into specialty boutique “shops” complete with stage and catwalk for designer fashions to walk the runway. Busy shoppers looking for the best local selection in sustainable fashion can get all of their holiday shopping done in one place in an atmosphere of fun. Go Red for Women, a non-profit group that celebrates the energy, passion and power we have as women to band together to wipe out heart disease and stroke, is the charity partner for this event.

More than 1,000 women (and men) will experience the boutique shops at CRAVE while they mingle over a Crave-licious Gingered Pom Sakétini while watching Gypsy Chic headline our live fashion show series. Guests will explore the first-ever Crave Holiday GREEN Zone sponsored by Greenloop that will feature sustainable local designs and specialty gift items that are sustainable, green or organic (a requirement for all participating vendors). The ultimate in pampering services featuring “holiday hands”~a pumpkin hand mask and manicure, head massage, waxing, henna and more will be offered to maximize relaxation and to de-stress before the holiday rush. Featured local shops include Greenloop, Meringue Boutique, Frock, Gypsy Chic, Amy Burgess, Sameunderneath, Allium, Missionary Chocolates, Blooming Moon Spa, Green Lemonaide and many others from all over the region.

CRAVE brings “everything you Crave under one roof” – shopping, pampering, mingling with friends, live fashion shows – all in one place, for one event. CRAVE takes place from 5-9 p.m. on Wednesday, December 3rd at LUXE Autohaus, located at 410 NE 17th Avenue (NE 17th and Glisan). $15 advance tickets online at $20 at the door.

Contact Information:
Ericka Dickey

Sunday, November 09, 2008


My friend Crystal alerted me to this challenged today, which actually starts in 37 minutes PST. I really encourage you to check it out. As a Nike Tyke and Christian, I seriously consider myself a "Sole/Soul Collector." I'm going to try and post updates on this Challenged through out the 50 days.

50,000 Pairs in 50 Days Challenge

Nashville, TN -- November 7, 2008 -- Soles4Souls, the international charity dedicated to providing free footwear to those in desperate need, has announced plans to launch a new fundraising website, The charity is challenging bloggers and social media users to raise funds for 50,000 pairs of new shoes in 50 days.

Through the new world of blogging, emailing, twittering, and through many other forms of online media, the non-profit hopes to achieve not only the fundraising goal, but also to spread their mission far and wide. The Soles4Souls charity challenge will be live on Monday, November 10, 2008 and end on Wednesday, December 31, 2008.

"We have been utilizing the basic Web-based marketing tools such as e-mail blasts, social networking and YouTube videos. However, this website,, is the natural evolution of our viral marketing plan," said Soles4Souls Founder and CEO, Wayne Elsey.

"A strong grass-roots effort, combined with an effective web-based social marketing platform, will allow Soles4Souls to form online community in a creative manner while being effective with raising funds and helping those in need," he said.

Both the tech savvy and the computer challenged can visit to download their choice of four (4) Soles4Souls banners ad and blog widgets. Using the tools provided, users will be able to easily email, blog, or twitter the challenge to friends, family and co-workers as well as ask everyone to continue spreading the message.

"This is a huge challenge to meet a huge need. We want to virally attack the issues of poverty and make it simple for the end user to play a role in it," Elsey stated.

Donating is easy and takes just a click and a couple of minutes. It requires no shipping, no wrapping and no trips to the post office. The monetary donation is small with $5.00 buying two pairs of new shoes. Anyone can click and give, and all donations are tax-deductible.

After 50,000 pairs have been donated, one person (with a guest of their choosing) will be selected at random to deliver the shoes they purchased to someone in need on one of Soles4Souls' trips to Mexico!

"Can you imagine what it would be like to personally give someone their very first pair of shoes?! We look forward to connecting the tangibility of handing someone a pair of shoes with the virtual world of the Internet," Elsey said.

Social networking has become a very powerful communications tool; however, no one knows when life will hit hard or where a disaster will strike. One day you have everything you need; the next you may only have your life. A pair of shoes can help people begin the rebuilding process. Shoes not only bring hope, but in millions of cases they can save lives. It is estimated that Americans have 1.5 billion pairs of unworn shoes lying in their closets while over 300 million children around the world have never owned a pair of shoes. This is an opportunity to "Step Up" and to help Soles4Souls with their mission of "Changing the World, One Pair at a Time" with "One Click at A Time."

Saturday, November 08, 2008


Is playing right now at The Living Room in downtown Portland. GO SEE IT! INVITE YOUR FRIENDS AND TELL YOUR FRIENDS ABOUT IT! It is an amazing movie that is tied together through music in an awesome way. Mind blowing stuff.

CALL+RESPONSE is a first of its kind feature documentary film that reveals the world’s 27 million dirtiest secrets: there are more slaves today than ever before in human history. CALL+RESPONSE goes deep undercover where slavery is thriving from the child brothels of Cambodia to the slave brick kilns of rural India to reveal that in 2007, Slave Traders made more money than Google, Nike and Starbucks combined.

Luminaries on the issue such as Cornel West, Madeleine Albright, Daryl Hannah, Julia Ormond, Ashley Judd, Nicholas Kristof, and many other prominent political and cultural figures offer first hand account of this 21st century trade. Performances from Grammy-winning and critically acclaimed artists including Moby, Natasha Bedingfield, Cold War Kids, Matisyahu, Imogen Heap, Talib Kweli, Five For Fighting, Switchfoot, members of Nickel Creek and Tom Petty’s Heartbreakers, Rocco Deluca move this chilling information into inspiration for stopping it.

Music is part of the movement against human slavery. Dr. Cornel West connects the music of the American slave fields to the popular music we listen to today, and offers this connection as a rallying cry for the modern abolitionist movement currently brewing.

Call + Response trailer

I just saw this movie today and it literally blew my mind. I encourage you to listen to this call and then respond.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Sunday, November 02, 2008


As many of you know I'm a swimmer, water polo player, wakeboarder, former lifeguard and swim instructor and a recently employed woman at a sustainability consulting firm. Needless to say, water is a passion of mine. My last name, Forstrom, in Swedish actually means "forceful stream." I even have an orca (my favorite animal) tattooed on my left foot. It symbolizes many different aspects of who I am, but it serves a reminder to always be graceful, strong, and slightly feminine.

With my new job, I've taken upon myself to educate myself as much as possible on sustainability issues. I recently started reading the e-version of a book called What Matters, which uses photo journalism to bring to light issues facing our world. I would strongly recommend you all check it out. I thought I would highlight some interesing facts I've found out thus far reading this book:
  • More than half the population of our modern "civilized" world still suffers from water services inferior to those of the ancient Greeks and Romans.
  • According to the World Health Organization, there are over 250 millions cases of water-related diseases annually, EXCLUDING common diarrheal diseases.
  • In 2000, the UN estimated there were more than 4 BILLION cases of diarrhea annually and more than 2 million deaths a year.
  • In the What Matters book, there is an image of a little girl carrying a jug of water on her head with this caption: The girl is indeed "little" - she is four years old, and she is begining what may be an entire childhood devoted to hauling water. She is not going to school. She won't learn how to be a leader in her community. She will be deprived of some of the most basic benefits of society - all because there is no local source of clean, reliable and safe water."
  • Water is heavy - 8lbs per gallon. If you do the math, you need roughly 100 pounds of water per day per person. 5 gallons (40 lbs) disapears down the drain when you take a shower for 2 minutes (only if you are using an efficient showerhead).
  • Among all of China's 660-odd cities, only one small city of 200,000 people, Lianyuan in Hunan Province, can claim to provide clean drinking water straight from the tap. My dad lives in Shanghai, the largest city in China (population 20 million) and has to drink bottled water everyday.
  • The Yellow River, one of the world's longest, supplies water to more than 150 million people and 15% of China's agricultural land. Yet 2/3 of its water is considered unsafe to drink, and 10% is classified as sewage.
  • Nearly 700 million people in China drink water contaminated with animal and human waste.
  • 2/3 of China's rural population lacks access to piped water - a development failure that has become one of the leading causes of death among children under the age of 5.
While I am thankful and blessed to live in a place where I can get clean water whenever I want it. I can even brag that both my refrigerator and kitchen sink water is filtered even more. I think that it is absolutely RIDICULOUS and INSANE that people around the world do not even get the choice or the luxury of clean water in their neighborhood, town or city. I intent on being part of the solution. And I hope you join me. This Christmas season - I'm going to be donating money that would otherwise go towards presents to charities that help support clean water initiatives throughout the world.

Won't you join me? Even better - know a charity, NGO, etc. that already does this? Let me know. I'm going to create a blog roll list of them and keep them up for the remainder of the year. Thanks!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Poverty Bridge

Last Wednesday, I had the chance to hear Dr. Donna Beegle speak about her new non-profit called Poverty Bridge, who's mission is providing opportunities for moving out of poverty. It was a very powerful experience for me, because I tend to get so focused on helping eliminate poverty "over there" in third world countries that I completely ignore the poverty right under my own nose in my neighborhood, my workplace, Oregon, and the U.S. as a whole. While I am privileaged and blessed and live in a wealthy country I think it is easy to become so unaware of issues that my fellow Oregonians face.

Since Poverty Bridge is just launching there are focused on five programs and services right now:
1. Opportunity Conference - which is designed for people currently living in poverty. This conference addresses issues of shame and isolation, while offering ways to empower and build hope and connections with Navigators, people who are available to help those in need get out of poverty.
2. Navigator Connections - a program designed to recruit and educate people who want to make a difference and help others out of poverty. Navigators agree to make a weekly phone call to Opportunity Conference participates for six months after the conference.
3. Research - focused on capturing what works for people who move out of poverty.
4. Authentic Voices Leadership Institute - a month-month curriculum for educating epople who have experienced poverty and who have succedded in breaking poverty barriers.
5. Making a Real Difference Website - a networking tool to help both Navigators and Opportunity Conference participants to connect with others involved to overcome issues and serve as a general database.

Sound like something you're interested in? Ask about being a Navigator or maybe make a donation. The Opportunity Conference is looking for items that can't be bought with food stamps, like soap and toothpaste, as well as fun prizes to be raffled off at the next Opportunity Conference on March 7, 2009!

Where have you seen poverty lately? Please comment!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Not getting political but...

Got this amusing email, just thought I would share it:

Dear Red States:

We've decided we're leaving. We intend to form our own country, and we're taking the other Blue States with us. In case you aren't aware, that includes California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois and all the Northeast. It may even include Florida and Ohio, they are seriously considering it. We've given them until Nov. 4th to decide. We believe this split will be beneficial to the nation, and especially to the people of the new country. Since we're dropping the middle states we're
calling it United America, or simply the U.A.

To sum up briefly: You get Texas, Oklahoma and all the slave states. We get stem cell research and the best beaches. We get the Statue of Liberty. You get Dollywood. You can take Ted Nugent. We're keeping Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel. You get WorldCom. We get Intel and Microsoft.
You get Ole' Miss. We get Harvard and 85 percent of America's venture capital and entrepreneurs. You get Alabama. We get two-thirds of the tax revenue, you get to make the red states pay their fair share.

Since our aggregate divorce rate is 22 percent lower than the Christian Coalition's, we get a bunch of happy families. You get a bunch of single moms, and the highest concentration of pregnant unwed teenagers. Please be aware that the U.A. will be pro-choice and anti-war, and we're going to want all our citizens back from Iraq at once. If you need people to fight, ask your evangelicals. They have kids they're apparently willing to send to their deaths for no purpose, and they don't care if you don't show pictures of their children's caskets coming home. We do wish you success in Iraq, and hope that the WMDs turn up, really we do, but we're not willing to spend our resources in Bush's Quagmire. We'd rather spend it on taking care of sick people, and educating our children.

With the Blue States in hand, we will have firm control of 80 percent of the country's fresh water, more than 90 percent of the pineapple and lettuce, 92 percent of the nation's fresh fruit, 95 percent of America's quality wines, 90 percent of all cheese, 90 percent of the high tech industry, most of the U.S. low-sulfur coal, all living redwoods, sequoias and condors, all the Ivy and Seven Sister schools plus Stanford, Cal Tech and MIT. With the Red States, on the other hand, you will have to cope with 88 percent of all obese Americans (and their projected health care costs), 92 percent of all U.S. mosquitoes, nearly 100 percent of the tornadoes, 90 percent of the hurricanes, 99 percent of all Southern Baptists, virtually 100 percent of all televangelists, Rush Limbaugh, Bob Jones University, Clemson and the University of Georgia. We get Hollywood and Yosemite, thank you.

Additionally, 38 percent of those in the Red states believe Jonah was actually swallowed by a whale, 62 percent believe life is sacred unless we're discussing the war, the death penalty or gun laws, 44 percent say that evolution is only a theory, 53 percent that Saddam was involved in 9/11 and 61 percent of you crazy Redies believe you are people with higher morals then we Bluies..

Finally, we're taking the good pot, too. You can have that dirt weed they grow in Mexico.

Peace out,
Blue States

Any thoughts? Or have the actual statistics for this?

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Winter is Officially Here

"Adventure is the invitation to common people to become uncommon." - Warren Miller

Last night, my mother, brother, brother's roommate, 3/4 of the Quinn family and I went to see the newest Warren Miller movie downtown. It felt great being back in Oregon, hanging out with old ski buddies and reliving the days of being in middle school and running around the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall like manics.

After a bit of technical difficulty. Mom bought tickets for Saturday night instead of Friday night. So we had to buy tickets from people around us to get in so we were all spread out. The night began. For those of you who don't ski and don't have a clue who Warren Miller is. This was his 59th annual ski movie and each year he launches his newest movie tour in Portland, OR. His movies are the unofficial start of the ski/snowboard season. So last night at 8PM was the official start of winter.

I have to honest and say the movies have changed a bit, Warren Miller, with his comedic quotes like “If at first you don't succeed, failure may be your thing,” haven't been in the last couple of movies (granted I've miss a couple due to being in college) but I missed the last night. Last night they showed a whole section on a band and another section on moutain biking. Both were awesome but had little to do with skiing. The highlights of the movie include a fishing boat with a heli on the back, skiing in Iceland, and this sick jump over a highway with a fire truck in it. Can't get much better than that!

Skiing is one of the things I'm passionate about? What are you passionate about?

Monday, October 20, 2008

Little More on the Life Update

Got a couple of minutes to kill before heading to Bible Study. Which I don't think I've mentioned before. I joined a Bible Study run by Janette Green. The doctor at Houseboat camp and an AMAZING Christian woman. It is an all girl (or should I say woman?) Bible study that meets on Monday nights. Frank (FRANK - really loud and with a French accent) Janette's hubby makes us dinner and then we do our Bible Study. Right now we are studying prophecies, which isn't something I've ever spent much time on. So I'm learning a ton.

Today was also my first real day being unemployed. I didn't get much done though. I got up, started picking up the house because the cleaning people are coming tomorrow and our place is trashed (I did everything except my room - that is for after Bible Study), did a months worth of laundry, worked out, help my aunt load up her Hummer with all the stuff that didn't sell at the garage sale, did some research for my new part-time job (remind me to blog about that more), and applied for a couple of jobs from Craigslist. Hopefully, something will pan out.

That is basically my life. Oh, and the Red Sox lost last night. Let's not talk about it.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Life Update

It has been a couple days since I blogged. So I thought I would catch people up on my life. Here it goes:

  1. I'm currently watching the Red Sox game - GO SOX! For those of you who have been gone somewhere. The series is tied 3-3, which means this is the final game. I'm hopeful that the Sox will win.
  2. The garage sale went well this weekend. No rain, which was awesome. Sold a lot of stuff. Especially to this lady who came three different times! She was addicted I swear. I haven't done a garage sale since I was little (by that I mean my parents did the annual block one and I hung out until I got bored and went to play with the neighborhood kids). So it was interesting to experience this one. Between the people who drive by really slowly to see what I'm selling before they get out of their car, to the people who have to touch everything, to the people who have to get a deal. My aunt is coming to get the rest of the stuff tomorrow so it will be out of our house finally. (My mom can't wait!) I'm sure most of it will end up at Goodwill.
  3. Friday was my last day a THPRD. It was an interesting week but not too painful. My supervisor even invited me out to lunch next Thursday. That should be interesting. I really hope they make changes there but for the most part I am extremely happy with my time there. It was just time for me to grow up and start acting like a real adult.
  4. Speaking of acting like an adult. Diane Sexton, a girl in my Monday night Bible study invited me to a fundraiser for Pure Life Alliance at the MAC club on Saturday night. It was formal, so I got to play dress up. I had a lot of fun and learned a lot about sexual sin and how it affects not just one person, but their loved ones, families and friends. Did you know?
  • The U.S. Customs Service estimates that there are more than 100,000 websites offering child pornography (which are illegal) worldwide.
    Red Herring Magazine,

  • Hollywood currently releases 11,000 adult movies per year – more than 20 times the mainstream movie production.
    LA Times Magazine, 2002.

  • 39 million homes receive the adult channels in scrambled form, while the number of children with potential exposure to such images is about 29 million
    Morality Continues to Decay. Barna Research Group, November 3, 2003.

  • One in 4 American adults surveyed in 2002 admitted to seeing an x-rated movie in the last year.
    National Opinion Research Letter

  • 55%: Percentage of Porn movie rentals vs. non-porn movies in hotels in 2005.
    AVN News, State of the Adult Industry

  • The average time a porn movie is watched in a hotel room is 12 minutes., 3-29-05

There are a bunch more statics like this at the Blazing Grace website.

What have you been up too?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

What Matters?

Check out this website What Matters. Which discusses what matters most to our Earth right now. There are some amazing photographs! EVEN A FREE E-VERSION OF THE BOOK!

They also have a blog and a book for sale.

Also, check out the CNN article about children who work in Bangladesh recycling batteries.

What issues matter most to you?

Advent Conspiracy Promo Video

Just trying to spread the word on this issue. Pretty cool stuff! Care to join? Share your thoughts?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Garage Sale - THIS WEEKEND!

In an attempt to liquidate more of my aunt's boutique shop. I'm having a garage sale at my house this weekend.

Where: 16232 NW Joscelyn St. in Beaverton!
When: This Friday, 10/17 from 9AM-3PM & Saturday 10/18 from 9AM-3PM.


Items for sale include, tons of clothes, belts, bags. Children's toys. Large furniture items, wine rack, mirrors, etc.

Hope to see you there! Even if you don't need anything, stop by and visit me!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Silk Pajamas

While organizing my aunt's boutique shop I came across two boxes, roughly 50 pairs of silk pajamas. All woman's styles in various sizes and colors. Any suggestions on how I can sell them or donate them? Let me know. Thanks!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Two Week Notice

It's been awhile since I wrote about my life career wise. Here is a little update.

Today I turned in my two week notice at T.H.P.R.D. Where I have been lifeguarding on and off for the past six years. It is time I grow up and find a real job that utilizes my degree. Lifeguarding is a great job when your in high school or college but not after graduating. While I believe working there has given me great opportunities and a chance to grow up and practice my leadership skills. It was time for me to leave. For the last couple of months I've felt unappreciated and taken advantage of. If you want details call me and I'll let you know.

I've never turned in a two week notice before. Has anyone ever turned in a two week notice before? If so, how did it go?

As for now, I'm trusting God has bigger and better plans for me. Counting my blessing for my family and thus lack of major expenses.

So I'm back on the market. If anyone knows of any marketing, management or non-profit jobs that are available. Please let me know. Thanks!

Tuesday, October 07, 2008


One of my readers told me about an organization called AIDtoCHILDREN which has visitors answer vocabulary questions. For every right answer, AIDtoCHILDREN donates .25 cents to World Vision. I think this would be fun for an entire classroom to do.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Joys in Being Sick

Odd title I know. But for the past couple of days I've been fighting this sick/cold/flu thing. Basically my throat feels like there is a sand-papered covered grapefruit stuck in there. So if I talk for very long I loose my voice. My ears feel plugged up and I'm feeling overall sluggish. But in being sick I've realized two awesome things:

  1. I'm thankful that I know sign language so I can still "sing"/worship at church yesterday morning!
  2. I'm thankful that I love social media and can still keep in contact with "the outside world" while being stuck at home, through email, checking blogs, and facebook!
I also like that I can take cough medicine and sleep for 6 hours during the day and still get 9 hours of sleep at night!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Transitions Cambodia

In my previous post I asked people what they were doing to make a change in this world right now. And my good friend, Melinda Groth, wrote about how she supports an organization called Transitions Cambodia, which mission is to "empowering victims of sexual trafficking with the opportunity and processes to heal from the past, focus on the present, and pursue the future." They are working to accomplish this mission by using Transitional Homes. Each home is run by four full time staff members and 10-15 clients, helping the clients gain independence and learn adult living skills. Some of the benefits of this style of transitional home care, include: lower operating cost than institutional after care, low cost of housing, high staff:client ratio, increased focus on individual client needs, limited security risks, improved independence in clients, better social models for adult living, and relatively short program time (average lenght of stay one year with two years of follow up).

I really believe transitional housing is a great way to teach better living skills. Last summer I worked at Orphans Overseas' Community House, a transitional home for teen mothers. And I saw first hand how those girls were learning better life skills, from money management, self-esteem issues, and better parenting skills while living together with help from each other and the staff.

Oh, by the way, you can check out Transitions Global's Blog here!

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Women of Vision for World Vision

This morning I attended Women of Vision 2008 Fall Kick-Off Event for World Vision at Sunset Presbyterian Church. I honestly did not know what I was getting myself into. I was attracted to an announcement in last Sunday's church bulletin. I'm passionate about non-profits and thought it would be fun to check it out. I also heard that some girls from my Bible Study were going so I was sold.

The first thing that caught my eye at the event was at each table setting there was a business card sized piece of paper that on the front said "Pray - Pray for at-risk youth." And on the other side it said:

"It is estimated that 2 million children, mostly girls, are enslaved in the global sex trade. These girls - and sometimes boys - may be required to service 15 to 20 customers per day."

That is up to 100 "customers" a week! That is outrageous!

I was glad to find out that World Vision has developed a targeted media campaign to deter would-be sex tourist in Cambodia, Coast Rica, Thailand, Mexico, Brazil, and the United States.
This sign says "I'm not a tourist attraction. It's a crime to make me one."

There was a really great guest speaker, named Rory Anderson, who is the Deputy Director of Advocacy and Government Relations at World Vision and works in Washington, D.C. lobby for human rights. She spoke about why it is important to advocate. One of the reasons, is because it is important to God.
"Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy." - Proverbs 31:8-9
The second reason, is because it is part of World Vision actual vision (duh!) to "Our vision for every child, life in all its fullness. Our prayer for every heart, the will to make it so." Anderson also talked about the two types of change, the change of our own will, and the change of other's will. This is done through advocacy. She pointed out three ways to change policies, money, media, and masses. And the worse thing is to do nothing!

The thing that I liked most about her talk was how she encouraged everyone there to become an advocate and write letters, emails, and make phone calls to their congressmen and women. How those letters, emails and messages will help educate them on issues they might not be aware of. This is something I definitely plan on doing on Monday and I encourage you to do that same. For more information/sample writing go here.

The really cool thing about the event was "A Citizen's Guide to Advocacy" notebook given to everyone who attended. In the book it outlines ways to get involved and advocate. One of the ways to get involved was "Online Social Networking," a personal passion of mine (if you haven't noticed yet). Encouraging people to use their bloggers, MySpace, and Facebook pages to inform friends and invite them to get involved with advocating as well.

Both my mom and I signed up to be Women of Vision partners in making a change in the world.

What are you doing to make a more positive change in this world?

Friday, October 03, 2008

Consignment Adventures

This morning, my friend Katie and I hit up Buffalo Exchange and Red Light Clothing Exchange. In hopes of getting rid of some of my aunt's clothing. We did have some success:
  1. Sold some clothes.
  2. Katie found a really cute purse for his sister's upcoming bday.
We also hit up some children consignment stores and failed miserably. One of the stores only offered in store credit and the other one did not offer consignment Friday, Saturday, or Sunday.

Oh well!

Still have lots of stuff to get rid of. Let me know if you have any suggestions!!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Bentley College is Now...

"The Bentley Board of Trustees announced today that the college has received approval from the Massachusetts Board of Higher Education (MBHE) to change its designation and name to become Bentley University, effective October 2, 2008."

Do you know what that means? The 2008 graduates (aka 800+ of my friends and I) were the last class to graduate from Bentley College! Fun thing to ponder today. Had to update my resume though. So my resume will say I graduated from "Bentley University" however, my diploma says I graduated from "Bentley College." Maybe I'll have to explain myself...or maybe no one will notice.

Just wanted to post a fun college graduation picture. Here I am with my younger (but taller) brother, Kirk!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Green Ink Goes Pink for Breast Cancer

My family friend, Tara Green is the owner of a really cool custom announcements, invitation, and stationary company called Green Ink.

During the month of October Green Ink will be donating 25% of all sales to help advance breast cancer education and research. There are breast cancer cards for sale for only $16 for a box set of 20 cards. There is also a Holiday section so you can start picking out your 2008 Christmas cards!

Not only that, but Green Ink is also sponsoring Rachel Allen from San Diego, a 3 Day Walker, on the 3 day, 60 mile walk on November 21, 2008. So you an pay it forward without purchasing anything by visiting and search for Rachel Allen. Help her reach her goal of $2,200.

Check Tara's store out and shop for a good cause.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

There will be an estimated 182,460 new cases of invasive breast cancer in women in the US in 2008 (and about 1,990 new cases in men). What can you do to help? Shop! Buy everyday items that support breast cancer research. Here are some suggestions from City of Hope:
  • Office products from Newell Rubbermaid's "Pink @ Work"
  • Avery pink and white binders with breast cancer awareness messaging
  • MVW's Mead, At-A-Glance, Cambridge, Day Runner calendars and journals
  • Innovera's white and pink Swarovski crystal-encrusted computer mouse
  • Samsill binders with pink ribbon decor and breast cancer awareness messaging
  • OfficeMax's in-store display featuring specially market leading office products
  • Designer apparel line Lyric Culture's "I Will Survive" pink T-shirt and tank top
  • Sutter Home's White Zinfandel "Capsules for Hope" program
  • Brita's special pink ribbon-themed water pitcher
  • Living Spaces Furniture "Sleep for the Cure" mattress set promotion
Anyone have any other suggestions?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Cleaning Up Shop

I'm helping my aunt liquidate her boutique shop. And thus have a ton of stuff I need to get rid of. Everything is brand new and never been used. If you are interested, know someone who is interested or have any suggestions on how I can sell this stuff.
Thank you!Various women's leather jackets in all sizes and colors.

More leather jackets and leather belts (also in various sizes and colors and designs)
Kimono-inspired men's and women's tops.
Kid's kimonos and other clothing.
Two Large 100% Silk Bathrobes.More Leather Belts.Marble vases, incense burners, eyeglass holders, boxes, and candle holders.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Paul Gillin's The New Influencers

Okay, okay, I was supposed to read this book for class last spring. But I didn't. Instead I read it this summer - see I'm a nerd.

In The New Influencers, Paul Gillin teaches companies both big and small about social media (more importantly how to blog). More importantly he talks about the importance of getting "new influencers" people who are leading bloggers in your industry, involved with your businesses social media projects. For example, spending a couple weeks researching who these new influencers are, contacting them letting them know who you are, what you are doing, and ask them if they want to be involved. Sending them products, giving them interviews, etc.

I thought the book was a really easy read. I loved the real life examples Gillin highlights. The most benefial part of the book was the chapter eight which was on podcasts (something I'm interested in getting involved in) and chapter nine which was about practical (and cheap) tools that everyday people can use to enhance their blogs.

The only part of the book that I didn't like was "Many A-list bloggers I talked to for this book said they haven't taken a real vacation in years because they're concerned about their popularity ranking." As someone who wants to make their living off social media, this is a little discouraging. Don't get me wrong, I love working I can play hard as well. Not people able to take vacations is dissapointing. Hopefully, I won't get too caught up in the blogosphere where I'm addicted to it, like some people are to video games. I want to enjoy my time here on Earth, experiencing it. I think people need to work on finding more balance between work and play and the digital world and the real one.