27+ Days of Kindness to Honor Newtown–Remembering Noah Pozner

It’s been more than a month since the shooting in Newtown at Sandy Hook Elementary school…and I worry that the memory of it has already dulled in the American consciousness.  Somewhere, in between throwing around political buzzwords relating to mental illness, parenting, school safety, gun control, we need to make sure that the faces of those lost stay in our collective consciousness.

I signed up for this blog project to help create some good in the wake of this inexplicable tragedy, but I have written and deleted dozens of empty-sounding words multiple times.

It seems almost unavoidable not to fall into cliche.

Who was Noah Pozner?

A son

A twin

A lover of cheese, pickles, salmon and tacos


Give Kudos to Deserving Health Workers by Voting in the Real Awards (ends today!)


It would be hard to find a person who hasn’t had at least one positive experience with a health care professional. It is important to take a moment to call put those who go above and beyond the call of duty and imbue their profession with an extra dose of humanity.
Save the Children and Frontline Health Workers Coalition created the REAL Awards as a way to call out United States-based health workers for the sacrifice and commitment they exhibit through their work.
Workers have been nominated in these categories:

Newborn and Mother Care
Chronic Disease Care
Pediatric Care
Hospice Care
Veteran Care
Emergency Care
At-Home Care
General Health Worker

You can learn more about the awards, as well as cast your vote here


Another Gift that Gives Back: Give the Gift of Safe Birth

If it weren’t for a whole host of amazing medical professionals, neither I nor my babies would probably have survived my pregnancies. I was preeclamptic with each of my two pregnancies and had my doctors not known what to look out for or been lax in monitoring me, I might have had a very different outcome. I needed care before, during and after labor. Because I received such a high standard of care, I was even able to avoid having c-sections or any more medical interventions during labor than those that were totally necessary.

The statistics are staggering–Every year across the world 287,000 women die in pregnancy and childbirth. Another 7-10 million women and girls suffer severe or long lasting illnesses caused by complications in pregnancy and childbirth. The numbers multiply exponentially for women in developing countries.


Gifts that Give Back: Support Mothers in Uganda by Buying Beautiful Jewelry

It is a wonderful gift to help people in need become self-sufficient.

It’s even better when you get a beautifully made product out of it 🙂

1000 Shillings has a pretty amazing business model.  A group of highly talented women artisans earn capital for their own small businesses by making limited edition jewelry for the company. Each and every product sold through 1000 Shillings helps a woman establish a small business, which enables her to support her family.

These women are not being given handouts, they are being offered a leg up.

I urge you to check out the lovely paper bead jewelry on the site (all under $30) and read more about the lives of each of these amazing mothers


Stand Up for Women’s Education on November 10 #IAmMalala

It is hard to imagine my life without access to education.
November 10th is my birthday. Of the 35 years that I’ve been alive, I have spent about 2/3 of them in some kind of school…elementary, high school, college and graduate school twice. I assume both my son and my daughter will take a similar path.
Not once did anybody dare to suggest that because I am a female, I should not be educated.
Not so for much of the world.
In addition to being my birthday, November 10, 2012 is exactly one month from the day that Malala Yousafzai, a 14 year old girl in Pakistan, was brutally shot in the head for promoting girls’ education.


Give it a minute to sink in.