Planting Season

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On Thursday night, with the help of my friend Michelle, we strung see packets on a big oak tree in the middle of Trolley Hill Park in Queen Anne.

This is one of my favorite parks because of the community garden and the beautiful flowers and trees. It is fragrant in the spring and summer and the perfect spot to have moments of deep meditation, to have picnics, or to drink wine with your best friend until late into the night.

It is also the perfect place to find some unexpected magic hanging from the Giving Tree.

The signs were made from recycled cardboard and the seed packets varied from sunflowers to tomatoes to cucumbers to basil to favorite flowers of the honeybees.

I hope the gardeners who share the community garden took some of the seed packets to plant in their patch. And I hope whoever else stumbled upon the Giving Tree found some sort of happiness from it.

Tomorrow I will cut the rest of the seeds down and take home the signs.

Related Reading:
P-Patch Community Gardens – Seattle 
How to Plant Seeds in a Seed Tray 
How To: Vegetable Garden
The Giving Tree – Amazon Link 

Street Art 2

 

Sometimes we all need a little encouragement when pursuing our dreams.

Painting was found at Goodwill. I used paint markers to draw on the quote and a permanent marker for the border design. I wrote a few notes on the back to whoever finds this painting. It is located somewhere in Capitol Hill. Hopefully someone decides to take it home!

I hope you have a wonderful day! I love you.

The Truth

I don’t turn on the radio very much, so I can still listen to Pharrell’s Happy song for hours on end. I hope someone else enjoys it as much as I do still. Or at least cracks a smile if they happen upon these signs.

Located on a one-way street somewhere in Queen Anne.

Signs are made out of cardboard I received from QFC. Cardboard is arguably my favorite medium because it is versatile and free. If you’re in need of cardboard head to your local grocery store and ask for free boxes and they will be happy to give you some!

Cooking Matters

Today my act will be part of a small ongoing volunteer position with a non-profit organization that I’m really excited to share and raise awareness about. Part of 100acts is about exploring as many different local volunteer opportunities as possible because at least for me, until doing some conscious and engaging research, I never realized most of these easy but beneficial positions existed. I hope to share my experience so others may learn about them and spread the word and/or join me in giving back.

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What We Have in Common

Sometimes the soul purpose of an act is just to make someone smile. This is one of them.

In case you can’t read my barely legible handwriting, the quote reads:

“Remember that everyone you meet is afraid of something, loves something, and has lost something.”
– H. Jackson Brown Jr.

It is going to rain later today. That is the beauty of chalk. It is a temporary memory; a paused moment on the sidewalk (or like an older version of snapchat).

Like most things, it is here for a moment in time and then with the rain it is washed away leaving only small, colorful traces behind.

Please Give Blood

I’m going tell you the truth right off the bat: I did not donate blood today. But I am asking you to take my place instead. Before you silently accuse me of being a hypocrite, please let me explain.

I have a needle phobia. I cringe when I pass a blood donation bus which is followed up by waves of guilt and shame because I know how vital/easy/life-saving/not painful it is to give blood. I can’t even being to imagine what the person who receives my blood is going through. I could possibly save a life and all I have to do is fill a bag of blood while laying on my back for 10 minutes and then stuff my face with free cookies. So I decided to finally grow up and stop crying over spilt milk…err blood.

A few weeks ago when I started planning out 100acts I made an appointment with the blood bus for May 6th at 11:00AM. Today I woke up feeling extremely grateful for the gallons of blood swirling inside my body and ready to give some to anyone who will take it. I walked up to the bus with my eyes wide and a big nervous smile on my face ready to do this! TAKE ALL THE BLOOD.

To my frustration, The CDC has deferral policies on people who have traveled to certain cities around the world due to possibly being exposed to diseases such as malaria. Puerto Vallarta? Deferred. Non-major cities in Thailand? Double deferred. I am not allowed to donate blood for a year due to possible dormant malaria that could be in my system.

I understand that these restrictions are necessary, but I am seriously bummed out. Not only is it crucial to donate blood, I personally felt as though I would be overcoming a selfish obstacle that stood in the way of participating in something bigger than me; an act that is entirely for someone else.

So I ask whoever is reading this to first check blood donor eligibility here on the Red Cross website, and then please take my place to donate blood. If you would like to make an appointment click here otherwise they do take walk-ins. It’s a fast and simple process that makes a big impact. Next May I’ll be in the donor chair next to you, but for now I’m signing up as a volunteer to help the donors with what else: Stuffing their face with free recovery cookies.

For more information on why to donate blood, click here.

Related Reading:

Puget Sound Blood Center website 

AABB – Why You Should Donate Blood 

Love in Circulation

We’ve all done it – drive or walk past a homeless person on the street ignoring them completely. No eye contact, no words spoken, as if they were invisible. I’m guilty of this and I’m pretty ashamed. Why is it so hard to acknowledge a person struggling? The more we put up that barrier between “us” and “them” the more we start believing that there is some sort of real separation between us. Would you completely ignore a coworker on the street? Your mother? A person asking for directions?

The truth is we are all human beings; we all feel and hurt and struggle. We are all connected. For this act I decided to stop ignoring other people. To start understanding that we aren’t different; that I could have easily been in their position. I will not ignore anyone else on the street anymore. To even acknowledge with a “no, sorry” or a smile makes a significant difference. I urge you to take part in this as well!

I made homemade kits with pictures of trees I drew representing the many different lifelines that make up this world. Each line represents some connection we have with each other, nature, animals, etc. On the back I acknowledged the person I drew it for and let them know we care about them. We see them.

The kit also included fruit and water as well as a little bit of money. It was made from my favorite repurposed brown paper bags that were individually painted.

I drove around and handed these out to people in need holding signs of hard times. The reason I labeled this post as “Love in Circulation” is because of the belief that whatever we put out into the world is what we will receive back. If you project hate, frustration, ignorance you will only see the world filled with that and in turn experience those emotions in circulation throughout life. So instead put love, kindness, hope into circulation. I know this is easier said than done, but consciously making an effort every day to acknowledge others positively causes a chain reaction even if our actions seem small.

I LOVE YOU!

Related Reading/Viewing:

Mental Illness and Homelessness 
Invisible People
Homeless Veteran Transformation 
Make Them Visible – Social Experiment 
Make Them Visible – Website
Union Gospel Mission – Get involved and volunteer locally!

Spotlight – The Surin Project

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I want to start introducing “Spotlight” posts sporadically that showcase a specific organization, person, animal, etc. that is making positive impacts throughout our world no matter how big or small. The goal is to educate others on the spotlighted project/person/thing and generate more awareness of their presence and purpose.

The first Spotlight post is about the Surin Project. I volunteered with the Surin Project while traveling in Thailand and I feel as though I haven’t been able to properly explain in words the impact they are making in captive Asian elephants’ lives. Hopefully today I can do it justice by recounting my own experience and the complex problems facing captive Asian elephants and their mahouts.
(lengthy article ahead)!

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