Happy Sunday, dear friends. I have to admit it. I am a little bit sore today. My daughter and I, recently decided to spend 15 minutes, every day, honoring our bodies with movement. Making this small gift to my body is a rather big thing for me.
I spent all of my youth, from the age of 3, in dedicated ballet training. I attended two classes a day until the age of 16, when my developing body became decidedly unballerina-like. I was ingrained in a training habit that was hard to change. It was all or nothing, and all usually brought me injury, and nothing brought me self-judgement.
I have since found a middle way in my life. I call it baby steps. Baby steps are not overwhelming. They don’t seem to trigger the all or nothing response in me, and that, my dear friends, is a good thing. I simply wish to honor my body with some movement, not punish it with training. It has taken me almost half a century to become friends with my body, and I want to keep it that way.
Even though I am sore, I am also happy that we get to share some feel good news today. We have some wonderful, heart-warming stories to brighten up our day.
The giving keys unlock human potential.
Caitlin Crosby is an actress and singer, but she always knew she wanted to do more for the world. One day she wore her hotel room key around her neck during her concert, and the beginnings of the Giving Keys formed in her heart.
Crosby sells recycled keys that are engraved with inspirational words like “courage” and “love.” She employs homeless people to engrave the keys and make them into jewelry. She also gives the proceeds to charity.
The Giving Keys have also inspired individuals to pay it forward, and then share their stories of hope and triumph on the Giving Keys website. What started out as a single key, has turned into a movement of sharing keys that unlock human potential.
A shift in wasting food created Foodshift.
Dana Frasz is not your regular food entrepreneur. She had a remarkable realization, when she flipped the idea of food service waste disposal and began reclaiming food.
Frasz was shocked that the US food system throws away about 40% of its products. In a land with so much bounty and people still going hungry, she found an unexplored solution. She created Foodshift, a San Francisco area food recovery and redistribution platform, to address the problem of excessive food waste and hunger. She matched food to people simply by moving it from one location, where it was considered garbage, to another where it was considered food.
In this interview, Frasz shares how her program works and also discusses other international models for reducing food waste and getting food to those who need it.
Santa Train brings a surprise to Appalachia.
For 72 years, the Santa Train brought gifts and supplies to Appalachia, one of the poorest areas of the US. It makes 14 scheduled stops along the way, and people crowd the stations to be a part of this much anticipated holiday spectacle.
This year, singer Amy Grant was the celebrity ambassador for the charitable event. She surprised Savannah Church, a young woman with William’s Syndrome, by coming up to her in the big crowd, giving her a hug and singing with her. Savannahs joyful reaction was priceless.
Young teen and his friends bring free hugs to a Ferguson protest in Oregon.
We can learn a lot from young people like Devonte Hart and his friends. They brought “Free Hugs” signs to a Portland, Oregon protest focused on the Michael Brown case.
They joined the protest, but decided to share love within the crowd and not anger. Police officer, Bret Barnum was a recipient of a huge hug from Devonte. Opening up to love and accepting it from others, even in the midst of conflict, is a powerful step in the right direction.
A very little girl with a very big heart, gives away her hair.
Three-year-old Ariana Smith from Winterport, Maine, watched a video from Extra Life, a charity that supports the Children’s Miracle Network. There was a child in the video who did not have any hair, and Ariana asked her dad why. He told her that the little girl had cancer, and lost her hair from the medical treatment that helped her get better.
Ariana decided that she wanted to donate her own hair so that another little girl could have hair. She went to the hair salon and had her first haircut ever. She then donated her hair to Locks of Love, so that another little girl could feel pretty. Her act of selfless love is an inspiration, and shows that a person is never too little to make a huge difference in the life of another.
Rupert the horse brings joy to nursing home residents in the UK.
Rupert is a rescue horse that was scheduled to be euthanized, but he was saved by a loving human and rehabilitated. He is now a therapy horse, and brings joy to schools, hospitals and nursing homes in Shropshire, England. When I saw this video, it brought me to tears. He has such a loving demeanor and makes everyone he meets happy.
That’s the good news for today. Have a day filled with joy and wonder. My wonderful news partner, Gavin Harrill, will take over the Golden Gaia News Roundup until Thursday, when I look forward to visiting with you all again. Have a wonderful week.
Be Well. Be Joy. Be Love!