Giving Thanks for Green

| 12/3/2008 3:00:57 PM

Hello again, everyone! This post finds me (and you) just back from the Thanksgiving holiday, a great time to spend with family and friends and to think about all of the bounty we enjoy here in America. Regardless of our level of material wealth, we all have a lot to be thankful for, and this year maybe more than ever. Unlike many of the world's people, we don't live in a war-torn country, and we don't have to live in constant fear for our safety and the safety of our family members. Most of us have access to equal rights, education, quality health care (even if the system needs reforming). We have electricity, running water, food to eat and people to eat it with. This year I was thankful that we may have a political team that prioritizes protecting our environment. I was thankful for having a job that provides me with much more than an income—one that's also a place I love to go to, where I do something I care about and am surrounded by people I enjoy being with.

But getting back to work this week, I got a reminder that sometimes giving thanks for our bounty is made more significant when we realize we don't need so much. Our editor-in-chief Robyn e-mailed me about an awesome program called Hannah's Lunchbox that a friend of hers is working on with his family in Atlanta. Essentially, this family is selling their beautiful and luxurious Atlanta home and buying one half its size so they can donate the money to The Hunger Project, which works to help starving people in Africa. This was a 16-year-old's idea! She didn't think it was fair that some people in the world starve while others (like her and her family) have so much. She wanted to find a way to give, and the whole family got involved. Now they are making what many would consider a huge sacrifice. But take a look at their website—this family is thrilled! They talk about how much doing this has made them grow as individuals and a family, how much the kids have learned, how wonderful it feels to make a difference... 

I realize that not everyone is in the position to make this kind of a contribution. But it really makes you think about what you could do without and how it might help others. I think one of the truest ways to give thanks for what we have is by giving to others, and this family has certainly got the true meaning of Thanksgiving in the bag!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday weekend. Let us know what you like to do to give back. I'm off to Chicago this week for a photo shoot, then on to Santa Monica next week for the Eco Gift Festival (where Robyn will be speaking and our publisher, Bryan Welch, will act as emcee), but I'll be checking in and I'd love to see your comments!

This is the Salwens' Atlanta home. Visit the Salwens' website for more photos or information, to contact them or to place a bid.

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