Thursday, May 26, 2011

40 Days and 40 Ways ...(to help) #38 TerraCycle is a company that turns your trash (like CapriSun pouches and Snickers bar wrappers) into cool, reusable stuff like backpacks, toys, office supplies, etc. And the proceeds go to the non-profit organization that you choose! You can just set up a collection box around your office or school for people to dump their dead bic pens or crayola markers in. Once it's full, ship them to TerraCycle to be made into cool stuff and your school (or chosen non-profit) racks up!

I LOVE LOVE LOOOOOOOOOVE this idea! I want to do it so badly at my preschool, but we aren't a non-profit. Please let me know if you start a brigade and I'll send you stuff I collect for your non-profit, for sure!!!

40 days and 40 Ways ...(to help) #37 WWII vets

This organization is working to get all WWII vets to see their memorial before they die. They send veterans, free of charge to D.C. to see what has been established in their honor. My great-uncle Wilburn K. Ross won the Congressional Medal of Honor in WWII. He is, by God's grace, still living and able to visit this memorial. I wonder how many people can say the same of the veteran in their life.

Check out the video, spread the word.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

40 days and 40 Ways ...(to help) #36 Dining in the Dark

I can't take a bit of credit for this idea (or really any of my ideas), but this one in particular came from my Mother-in-love and Aunt-in-love when they came to visit last summer. Before visiting us in Monterey they spent some time in San Francisco. While there they had an interesting dining experience at a restaurant that was completely dark. It was to advocate for and give others a taste (no pun intended) of what it is like to be blind.

What a cool experience! What a way to open your eyes!!

It turns out these restaurants are all over the country! Search for one in your town by Googling "dining in the dark". You may be surprised as to what you really begin to see!

40 days and 40 Ways ...(to help) #35 Get HOT legs and save the planet!!

May 16-20 is Ride your Bike to Work Week!!! Friday, May 20 is Ride your Bike to Work Day!! (For those that can't commit to a whole week.)

I'm sure I don't even need to tell you the benefits of this: Makes you healthier (and hotter), helps cut down on fossil fuels, saves money (especially with the gas prices these days), and who knows, you may even enjoy it and want to do it more!!

For those who logistically can't do this, try to at least take public transit, or carpool with someone this week! Come on, what have you got to lose?!

40 days and 40 Ways ...(to help) #34 Christmas

Nobody wants to think about Christmas in May. Including myself. But you can't very well think of charity without Christmas coming to mind. With that being said, I want to tell you about my all-time favorite Christmas charity!! I've been doing this charity since I was 17 (Yikes 10 years now!). My mom got us doing it in high school and I just loved the concept, so I've done it every year. This year I was able to help on a bigger scale by helping at the local contribution center as well as buying for the charity.

It's so easy, and it helps children around the world to have a Christmas!! You just grab a shoe box, fill it with little toys, games, clothes, soap, toothbrushes, etc. put a few bucks in for shipping (I think it was like $5 this year) and take it to your local distribution site (found at the website).

You don't have to run out and buy all that stuff either! When I was in college (and of course, broke) I would only eat happy meals when I got fast food. I saved up all the little toys and put them in the boxes. I got donations of crayons in boxes from Cracker Barrel and I also included boxes of soap, travel sized toothpaste and kids toothbrushes, and bought a pack of kids undies and socks. I put any free sample stuff I could get my hands on that they could use. I could usually fill about 3 or 4 boxes this way. I didn't have the money then to even include the shipping. They will accept the box without it (thank goodness), so now I give an extra monetary donation so that other poor college kids can give without worrying about the shipping money.

I thought posting this now might give you an idea of things to grab when you are at the dollar spot in Target or something so you could start a collection for when Christmas comes :)