The fab 5 that keeps me going...

The fab 5 that keeps me going...
One generation plants the trees; another gets the shade. ~ Chinese Proverb

Monday, August 31, 2009


I think it has taken me nearly all of my 38 years to figure out that my happiness is a direct result of what I put out into the Universe. Consequently, the more I help ~ the happier I am!
We had the privilege of meeting Alex, one of our neighbors in Catalina Vista who graciously gave a large donation of food to add to this weeks gathering. Alex's Birthday is this TUESDAY! So if you see him, wish him a happy one!

This is Alex with three of my children Noah, Amira and Sequoia. They were my helpers this past Sunday in 108 degree weather ~ whew! I treated them to Frosty's afterward.

Our weigh-in this week was 38 lbs., and I am happy to report that we have several new neighbors on board! Each one of you makes a HUGE difference!

"We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give."

~ Winston Churchill

See you next Sunday! :)

Monday, August 24, 2009

From 12 to 40 ~ in Just One Week!!!

Every Sunday morning, I get up, work for a few hours and then head to Catalina Vista wondering what will be in store. This past Sunday I think you may have gotten a glimpse of me smiling ear to ear as I collected food donations and chatted up some neighbors. It renews my sense of community, belonging, cohesiveness in a neighborhood and all the while doing something good.

As the title says, we went from 12 lbs. the first week to 40 lbs this week! The weigh-in is an exciting part of the calculations too because its a measure. This week I snagged two of my kids from school and brought them to the Community Food Bank for the weigh-in. Its a bit different than weighing in at a 'weight loss' place. Here, we want to be big and fat in our numbers! :)
These are my two children from Ethiopia. I traveled over two years ago to pick them up in a place that will always be so dear to my heart. But the devastation there is beyond shocking. Its criminal. Someday I hope to take them back so they can see where they came from; what they survived.
A flash of a naked man, laying in the sidewalk still haunts me. He didn't have any clothes, and I didn't have any words. I wanted so badly to yell to the driver, "STOP! STOP NOW! WE MUST GIVE HIM FOOD AND CLOTHING!" But the words never came out. I opened my mouth and only a floodgate of tears came pouring out ~ in a country where it isn't culturally 'okay' to cry. I knew there was only one thing to do; hold my breath. I did, and I quietly stopped. But I knew that I would never be the same again. His image still continues to haunt me. I didn't do anything. I don't want to feel that again. I have to do SOMETHING.
I don't tell people about the man, mostly because I am ashamed. I missed the opportunity to do something. Maybe it was the way it was supposed to be, because I still carry the weight of him with me as a reminder to DO. I won't let the world pass me by. I'm a mover... and I know that only the unimaginable is impossible. If you can dream it, you can do it.
Let's do it together.
See you Next Sunday my awesome fabulous wonderful neighbors!!!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Twelve Pounds...

I have seen firsthand the devastation of hunger. I have seen a mother of skin and bones struggling to feed her baby ~ of the likes I never could imagine. This was during my trip to Nepal as a young graduate student naive of the world. It shocked me into a reality too intense to absorb, yet I carry it with me every day - the image...

But nothing hits home like the trip to Ethiopia. I'll write more as I become brave. But its a spot within me so deep I can't type the words without sobbing.

Nonetheless, the project is underway and I feel energized and rejuvinated by the folks that have chosen to participate. Thank you. Really, thank you.

The first weigh-in was exciting ~ albeit 12 lbs., including my donation, marked the beginning. The start of anything is always the hardest but the smiling faces I have encountered thus far in Catalina Vista, make it easy to go on.

It really was a monumental moment of the start of the difference we will make ~ together.

It was also a really nice surprise to run into Peter Norback ~ the person behind the idea of One Can A Week. Peter is a good soul with an incredible vision and what's special about him is ~ he never gives up. He is making a difference in the world.

Each one of our donations every week make a difference in the world no matter how big or small.
They matter. YOU matter.
See you next Sunday!

Monday, August 10, 2009

The Beginning...

I started my rounds today, visiting 16 homes. Several people weren't home (or didn't want to answer the door to a stranger standing outside ~ although I'd like to hope I am pretty non-threatening). I did get about 5 homes to participate for next Sunday ~ a good start.

On my way home, I phoned Peter (Miles neighborhood, one can a week) who completely understands every nuance of going door-to-door calling on people to do something good. It is definitely nerve wracking to walk up to a door trying to explain that I'm not selling anything and that I'm going to do all the work ~ they just need to want to participate for the betterment of our community.

I feel encouraged by some that invitingly asked me into their home while I explained the program, and gave big shouts of "so glad someone is doing something good!" when in fact, I am just the messenger. It is each neighbor, each individual with just one can.

Just one.

It makes a difference.

YOU make a difference!

See you next Sunday!