Wednesday, March 31, 2010
How true that is. And I am officially announcing the expansion of this challenge. I will not stop with the money for Haiti at the end of the school year. I will continue this challenge, spending money only for basic needs (except for small Hannukah and birthday gifts, and donating all spare money) indefinitely. This Summer my cause will be Haiti; for Hannukah, perhaps Grady's adoption fund; for my birthday, maybe Meir Panim, a charity that feeds Israeli children living below the poverty line. I don't know. There are so many charities out there. But we always have something to give.
Sunday, March 28, 2010
Today my family is cleaning for Pesach. We must get rid of all leavened food. This morning I vacuumed the basement.
Friday, March 26, 2010
I wish she didn't think it was so amazing. If she thinks it's so amazing, it means it's uncommon. More people should be doing things like this.
Thursday, March 25, 2010
PS When one loves a doll, yes it IS harder than you think it is not to give them Hannukah presents.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Will write again when I have something more to say.
Monday, March 22, 2010
Sunday, March 21, 2010
No question about it, I will need more money from my parents after break. Right now I have just the amount I need in order to get home. Oh, and I plan on cutting my hair for Locks of Love over break, which will cost for the haircut and the shipping. My parents will pay, but still...why is it so hard to save money?!
Saturday, March 20, 2010
Now that we have that settled...
Today in Shabbat services, I suddenly realized, "Oh, my God, I'll be wearing the same two skirts every week." The only way I could overcome this sudden horror was to remind myself that I got along fine with one skirt on my program last summer. This incident demonstrates the necessity of inner conviction when changing lifestyles.
Also, tonight at a school thing I tie-dyed a t-shirt. I will be giving up a plain red t-shirt to make room for it.
Friday, March 19, 2010
The hardest part of The Challenge to save money for Haiti relief right now is...I want to give now! There are so many worthy causes out there...I just want to give...I don't know if I can hold out on not donating until the end of the year.
Thursday, March 18, 2010
I am knitting myself a scarf. It is a lot of work, and I have no doubt that I will not be able to wait patiently to wear it once it's done.
So I will hide it, in a gift bag, until my birthday in February.
Happy birthday to me!
I do find it interesting how well adjusted I am to this Challenge compared to how well adjusted I am to giving away my things. I barely notice The Challenge anymore--really!--while I really want my stuff back. It's not that I really want anything in particular (well, except for one sweater, and that's a long story) back, I'm just stuck in the consumer mindset of wanting STUFF.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
I also packed up the books I never read. Next project is the rest of my desk.
I really do believe in living with few enough things to be almost uncomfortable for our society.
My two big English quotes in this vein: "I saw wnat I saw and I can't forget it." (Sara Groves)
"Give until it hurts." (Mother Teresa)
Also, my shoe drive is happening! Yay!
Monday, March 15, 2010
Sunday, March 14, 2010
I discovered an organization called Soles 4 Souls. They accept used shoes of all types, and bring them to impoverished communities around the world. I have now started the easiest "shoe drive" ever: I sent out a couple emails to my school and now I will just wait for people to bring their shoes to my room. After Spring break, I will get transportation and possible help carrying and go donate the shoes to the nearest Soles 4 Souls location. (UPDATE: The school community service committee is now running the shoe drive. This makes sense, but I hate beaurocracy.)
I am trying to train myself to live with what I have and only spend money on necessities. It sounds hard until you realize the average American's list of necessities:
- A Warm Bed
- A Roof over One's Head
- Medical Care
So many people in the world don't even have the first two. Obviously I slip up now and again, because I collect kippot, need laundry detergent, etc. My current motto (taken from a mother who used it to teach her taumatized adopted child to calm down [http://www.onethankfulmom.com/]) is "I have enough." "This is enough." or (this one is mine) "I am blessed with what I have."
And you know what? It's true.
Saturday, March 13, 2010
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Don't you love it when things work themselves out like that?
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
I genuinely collect kippot, and I would love another something by Yair Emanuel. At the same time, I already have 11 different kippot, and that's more than enough for anybody. Maybe after The Challenge I will let myself get an Emanuel kippah.
Semi off topic: There is a Jewish concept of Hiddur Mitzvah, beautifying the commandment. At the same time, we are not supposed to get so caught up in material things that we forget God and religion. Where is the line?
Monday, March 8, 2010
UPDATE: Tonight I donated five dollars to Grady's adoption grant fund. Anybody can afford to give five dollars, and I just couldn't stand praying and praying and not doing anything.
Sunday, March 7, 2010
I found my old ID, so I don't have to pay IT for the new one anymore.
I have rides to and from the airport arranged with the faculty, so I don't have to pay for taxis.
Now I have more money to save to give to Haiti. God is good.
Saturday, March 6, 2010
Tonight I am going to Target to pick up a few "necessities" by American standards: hair ties, pantyhose, AAA batteries, and 3-oz bottles for shampoo etc. when flying. I will try my hardest not to buy anything else; I will, of course, be honest if I fail. We will see how things go.
UPDATE: It turned out that I also needed Conditioner, which I bought; I also bought a big jar of dried fruit because I am trying to lose weight and will be less tempted to eat dessert with that available. I also withdrew some money from my bank account: either I'll use it for a taxi to the airport or I'll use it over time as needed.
Friday, March 5, 2010
The hardest thing to give up for The Challenge has been trips to the theater. My school's Theatrical Society organizes trips to see plays--good plays--every so often, but tickets cost five to ten dollars apiece. If I cannot afford to donate to Grady's grant fund because I am saving for Haiti, I certainly cannot afford to buy theater tickets while I am savinf to donate to Haiti. Still, I miss the theater.
13 is a lucky Jewish number. I wonder if anything good related to The Challenge will happen today.
Also, speaking of Grady, perhaps you could consider signing up to be a prayer warrior for another child.
Thursday, March 4, 2010
In other news, I saw my psychiatrist yesterday and he upped the dose of the medication that makes me sleepy and fat. As far as I can tell, it hasn't done anything yet other than severely drugging me, but I know I have to wait and see.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
On the other hand, I really need to see him. I am sooo depressed right now. I am literally living moment to moment because life is so excruciating. I was depressed in my sleep last night, and I could tell. This morning, my Biblical Archeology class worked wonders to raise my spirits, but now I can feel myself sinking back into that horrible depression. I need help; I want out now!
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
Please consider helping this boy any way you can. It would be wonderful to get people together and form a network to "pray him home"!
No real update on the challenge, except that saving money for Haiti means I cannot presently donate to Grady's grant fund. There is so much need in the world; I don't mind the fact that my donations are small but it's so hard to know where to donate.
Monday, March 1, 2010
I hardly know how to respond to that. I do have a journal for the really private stuff. Obviously, if I post something on this blog I don't mind the public knowing. That should be the only criterion for what gets posted and what does not, because guess what? This is my blog.
My entire purpose for blogging is to be honest about my life and thorough in my story telling in order to give the world an accurate picture of me. What is the point of providing that picture if it is only a partial picture?
I will continue to be honest, open, and up front on my blog. It is my blog and I choose what gets posted. To all those who know me in real life: if you feel my blog is too personal and none of your business, I propose a very simple solution: stop reading.
In other news, my school is taking a group on a great community service trip and I can't wait to go. Near our school is a battered women's shelter and my school takes groups every so often to play with the children and give their mothers a chance to relax. Always before, the school has volunteered there on Shabbat; as an observant Jew, I missed out on the opportunity. Today, however, is Monday. I am going and I am excited.
I was clicking around the Reece's Rainbow site yesterday (yes, I am slightly obsessed) and discovered the concept of prayer warriors. When one signs up to be a Reece's Rainbow Prayer Warrior, one is matched with a specific child to "pray home". A photo and brief medical history are provided and updates are sent periodically. Prayer Warriors are asked to pray daily for their children at least until they make it home. What an easy way to help! (The Reece's Rainbow website is www.reecesrainbow.com)