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!