When I was a little girl, my sister, Linda took me with her to give blood. I asked why she did that. She said, "Because I don't have money to give."
It made sense to me. We should do something to help other people (even when we need help ourselves) and you give what you have. So, in high school, I started giving blood, wrote letters for Amnesty International, did beach cleanup.
Every now and then, I have more money than time. At those times, I give money. I currently have more time than money, so I look for things on volunteermatch.org to do. Recently, a friend introduced me to volunteering at the pound. I am very glad to have joined weekends@BARC .
Through volunteering I get the benefit of meeting a lot of different people and getting the reminder of how lucky I am. I have clean water to drink. I have everything that I need and most of what I want. I am safe. I am well fed. I have a veeeeeery comfortable bed to sleep in. I am lucky. I also believe that if one day I need help, there are people to help.
My friend, Robyn started project71 when she was inspired while visiting the local animal shelter for inspiration. The dogs were laying on concrete floors. She came up with a great idea for mod dog beds. She is freaky for all things mod. She designed a bed that can be used in the shelters, then when the dogs are adopted out, they get to take their beds with them. It is waterproof and strong and designed to be attractive and something people would want in their homes (especially a mod home :) )
A prototype was made and recently she and a collaborator did some tweaking and made it hypoallergenic and used stronger threads and stitchingl I love this bed. I love this idea. I LOVE the heart and passion she has put into this project. These beds will be ready to ship the first week of May. She just started this in December. Do you know how amazing that is? When I get a dog, my little baby will SO have one.
She recently talked to someone high up with the SPCA, and they are talking about carrying the beds, too.
I do not have a dog yet ( and won't for quite a while) but she does have some other things for the project I can use. On Etsy, her project71 shop has a necklace and
I love what she wrote in the description:
when anyone asks what you are wearing, tell them:
"i love dogs & so does project71"
"i want to help spread the word about adopting from shelters & rescues"
"spaying & neutering your pets is vital to controlling the overpopulated shelters"
"this is my prayer symbol for all the shelter dogs (& cats!)"
Any of you out there that work with rescues and shelters, if you would, check out her site and maybe suggest these transition beds in your area. Her contact information is on the pages.
What I DO have is a dry tongue from sitting her watching this with my mouth hanging open.
"The Most UNLIKELY Dharma Talk"
There are a lot of reasons people are fat. There are medical reasons, polycystic ovarian disease, thyroid issues, diabetes, Pituitary gland disease, Stein-Leventhal syndrome, ect. Sometimes it is because genetically, this is the hand they were dealt. Sometimes it is because they eat the wrong foods, and are too sedentary. Sometimes, it is because of a combination of varying levels of all of these things.
I am fat. I was not a fat child, but a poor diet and poor coping skills for trauma led to a weight gain in my mid teens. I ate too much of the wrong foods, but I was still active. I would still go jogging and play basket ball into my early 20's.
When I was 20-22, I was a bicycle courier downtown. I rode a bike for about 10 hours a day. Sometimes after that, I would ride 16 miles home. I was fairly poor, so I was not eating much. I was 230 lbs and wore a size 20. I was still that size when I became pregnant. I also did a few hundred sit ups a day, and would go running with my boyfriend.
I am not still in such good shape. I do not exercise anywhere near as much as I should. I have changed my eating habits from good to bad to better, with little change in my size. I am working on moving more. I am way too sedentary. However, due to my previous history, I know this is not the only factor in my weight.
So what is all that about?
It goes to how overweight people are made to feel. Wait. That isn't what I mean. Everyone is in control of their own feelings. No one MAKES me feel a certain way. However, the things that are said and the looks that are given result in my feeling poorly.
I can look in the mirror and think that I am beautiful and sexy. I honestly and truly believe it. I want to be thinner, and learning to cook healthier lately coupled with my almost 15 years of vegetarianism, I can be. However, I think that in this moment in time, I am a lovely sensuous woman. My curves are in good places, and to bring it all together, I am fucking funny, witty, and charming. Wow.... with all that I believe about myself, you would think I would have to get a construction crew to widen the doors on my 1950 built home, not to accommodate my wide hips, but my big giant head.
Fortunately, I have the rest of the world to tell me what a disgusting pig I am. I wake up every day, get ready for work and look in the mirror and see what I think is a beautiful woman looking back. When I leave the house, I am made aware that I am not that. What I am is an out of control, lazy fatass.
However, I am not going to join the "you are a big giant fatty you out of control slob" bandwagon. Inside my house, when I am looking in that mirror, that is not what I see.
Clicky Here for a listen
and why is it such a damn shock when an unfortunate looking woman is talented? What the hell is wrong with people. There are ugly men all over the place being talented and great, but you get one damn woman without makeup and Spanx on the effing television showing some talent and all of a sudden she is Helen Goddamn Keller???!?! I read about her brain injury at birth. She was deprived of oxygen and is a bit slow. She isn't mentally retarded and we should be amazed that she can form words and read music. This is a grown woman that worked in a church and took care of her dying mother. Obviously, she is pretty capable.
So I see this morning that someone made a post saying they have started a new community with the intention of banning the two major trolls to begin with. I was reading the comments with people going back and forth and decided to look at the new community. This is what I found.
Damnit. That was funny. It is heinous and awful, but funny nonetheless. Silly trolls.
In addition to doing something that is needed, giving love, affection, and scritches to these dogs, I got some much needed excersise by walking a fair share of Pitt Bulls, Chows, Boxers, and mixes of other large dogs. I was really feeling it later. There are some really wonderful animals there, and I really hope they find homes soon.
It is not that I just don't understand why someone would want to buy an animal from a breeder (I can do without all the inbreeding caused health and behavior problems) but it really does disgust me. There are hundreds of thousands of shelter animals killed each year, and I blame breeder buying and people neglecting to spay and neuter.
Pure breed argument doesn't stand either. I have two pure breed cats. One from Homeless Pet Placement League and one I found in a dumpster. I get wanting a specific kind of dog. I personally want a yorkie. However, I will find one that needs to be adopted or I will get another dog when it is time for me to adopt a dog. There were some gorgeous purebread dogs at the pound. The two sweetest loving dogs were a Rottie (the largest one I have ever seen) and a Pitt.
Next week, I am going to divide my time between walking dogs and playing with the cats.
The doctor decided to perform a little minor surgery. Con laid back and I watched. Oh the horror! It was incredibly gruesome. The most gruesome was probably the two stitches that he did from the side of the toe through THE DAMN NAIL!!!AAAHHRRRRRHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! *SHUDDERS*
He cannot wear a shoe for 10 days and gets to take a ton on antibiotics and has access to some pain pills. Hopefully it will heal really well.
So, we have pretty much figured out what this is doing for her.
This little 5 lb cat is so amazingly adorable it makes me want to berate my cats and call them stupid fat uggos.
I want one.
Thanks to originalmanley for hunting down the video for me.
If you would, please, take a moment and visit this link (especially if you are in Houston). Read Rocco's story, and consider fostering a dog or cat. A lot of people aren't able to commit to keeping an animal forever, but maybe could handle it for a short time. You cannot imagine what it would mean to an animal to just be somewhere with a soft place to sleep and a little tenderness while waiting for it's forever home.
Edited to add : Robyn just got news that a lot of dogs are about to be put down today and tomorrow. If you are at all able to come adopt, please do.
Also, Robyn is AWESOME at pet photography. If you happen to have insanely beautiful pets and have not been able to capture just how stunning they are with your camera, you might want to send her a little note and hire her to help you out.
Here are some of her other photographs: