Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Chapter 2 - Give More

Hi friends and thanks for coming back to read about Part 2 in this series.  I am overjoyed and thankful for the interest and input that so many of you shared in Part 1 yesterday.  Thank you, thank you.   If I were to make a New Year's resolution for my blog, it would be to get back to responding individually or via the comments section to all of your kind words.  I used to be very diligent about this interaction and find it so important, however, since returning back to work my time as you can imagine is spread very thin.  I assure you that I read each comment and they all make me smile.  Now, to the important stuff...

My goal for part 2 of this project is simple. Give More, and not necessarily more money. Give more time. Give more compassion. Give more thought. If I can't physically give time somewhere, than spend time organizing, just give something more. You see for most of my life I have had a fear of giving, ruled mainly by a fear of relinquishing that which I had worked so hard for, so that by the time I was ready to let go and conquer that fear I didn't even know where to start.

This is where I'm hoping you all can come in and help a girl out, and maybe in the process we can all be inspired. For the last five years, after we joined a congregation and regularly started attending a church, I gave my tithes every week and figured I was doing my part to help out. I didn't pay much attention to the details but was more of a "big picture" kind of giver. Next year I would really roll up my sleeves and take more of an active role is what I kept telling myself. Years passed and now here I am not feeling compelled to give to a certain charity, although I know there are thousands out there, and not knowing where or how to really navigate through it all.

So I began making a list of ideas, of ways I could help, and researched local charities where I could donate my time or help out in some way so that I could make a tangible contribution, not just monetary. The list is intentionally left blank in some months, which is where I'm hoping I can grab some ideas from you all. Which charities are near and dear to your heart? Where do you donate your time? That's where that linky party idea I talked about yesterday can come in...
Or are you in the same boat I am, you want to give more but don't' really know where to start?
What do you think of the list so far? This month I am organizing a coat drive through One Warm Coat and between myself and my good friend Nicole, we will have 2 drop off sites on either side of town, hopefully increasing the number of coats we collect. I sincerely don’t want to come across as a do-gooder looking for accolades. If I’m to be honest, this is somewhat forced. Not in the sense that I’m having to force myself to be charitable, but I am forcing myself to be consistent and conscious about it. And again, the idea of the blog as an accountability tool comes to mind.  My hope is that by the end of the year it comes naturally to me and without thought, and that I can be a good example for my kids.

Thank you for reading Volume II of my novel. Now that I’ve explained the project, we can move on to the fun stuff. Since the #1 New Year’s resolution is to get in shape, I will write a post in the next few days on workout wear, and what pieces I’ve found its worth to invest in. Stay tuned…


  1. So, are you going to be a drop off point? I'd 1) love to donate clothes and 2) see your face! : )

  2. YEAHH I like November.. this year promises to be another full scale money drive. We exceeded our modest goal last year, thanks to some very kind people! Our plan is to go big every other year rather than burn evryone out each year. Thank you for putting it on your list!!

  3. Oh Andrea, I love you. You are making me cry. Thank you thank you THANK YOU for November. I will never ever forget the bond I felt with you when I shared Miranda's T1D diagnosis that night at dinner with the girls at Da Vinci's. It means a lot to have your support. You are the nicest person and I am honored to be your friend.

  4. How inspiring!
    We give monthly through an AWESOME organization: Christian Foundation for Children and the Aging (CFCA.org, I believe). We sponsor a child from Guatemala but you could choose from many different countries. My first child, Nusly, (I started sponsoring when I was 16) has grown out of the program so I got matched with another little girl from her town, Flora. They send such nice letters and pictures and you can write back and forth. Now that Ryan is of writing age, I'm going to see if he'll help me with this. My aunt has written about this organization and even went to Guatemala to check out if it was really legit and it is. Totally and completely! I think it's a minimum of $35/month, but that's not much if you consider how often you go to Starbucks. And, by you, I mean me. =0)
    Good luck with the Coat Drive!!!

  5. Girl this is just so inspiring..I too feel like I need to reevaluate what it is I want to do with this one wild and precious life

  6. Andrea,

    These are great monthly goals. Kiran and I do the beach cleanup with Justin Rudd on the 3rd Saturday of the month. I have also contributed to the foodbankofsocal.org. I have both organized a food drive and also helped at the food bank. Good luck!

  7. I like Paurvi's idea of helping at the food bank or coordinating a food drive. I would also like to put the idea out there of asking you to do a blog post or a link back to my post, if I get it done :-) in October for Spina Bifida Awareness. Because research shows that upwards of 90% of babies diagnosed with SB are terminated I strongly feel there is a need for Spina Bifida education. Although there is no known cause of SB we do know that taking folic acid can help reduce your risk by 70% of having a baby with SB but also if you do get that diagnosis it's important for mothers to know it is not a death sentence and that our children are happy and smart and as much a blessing as any other child. The information some Dr.'s are giving to mothers is so outdated and education is really important for them to make an informed decision.

    I know that this type of stuff isn't what your blog is about but you do have a large amount of female followers and I just feel very passionate about this (as you already know).

    Oh and by the way, I already have several big bags of coats and sweaters that I have collected. So glad you got this project going.


  8. If you are looking for more ideas here a few few:
    **Long Beach Rescue Mission (my husband serves there twice a month; once giving a message and one day serving meals and they always need help).
    **Lydia House is the woman's shelter in Long Beach
    **Kingdom Causes in Bellflower and Long Beach are great organizations that serve the local communities.

  9. As far as buying/using less, this site is maybe extreme by some measures, but very inspiring;

  10. So inspirational - thanks for sharing! Great ideas!
    Hugs, SJ

  11. Thank you everyone for all your encouragement and sharing of ideas. I'm so inspired and really hope I can make a change and difference in this year. Love to you all!

  12. i love that you left parts of your list open. you never know what you new opportunities will be placed in front of you throughout this year.

    i'm going to do a book drive for our library project, as i'm working on taking it to hospitals in other states, so maybe that might be something we could work on together.
    i'm thinking of doing it in april because that's my bday month. let me know if you think that sounds interesting to you. xoxo


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