Thursday, June 30, 2011

Girls on the Run

Chatting, running, learning, laughing.  Sign me up to help promote this mission.  Girls on the Run is an organization I'm especially drawn to because it combines a few of my favorite things: kids, community involvement and running.  I wanted to share this organization with you because its mission truly inspires me, and its founder is such a strong example of how one little action with a lot of love can make a huge difference. 

Molly Wilmer Barker, who founded Girls on the Run in 1996, describes the organization as a program "designed to help girls really capture the spirit of who they are and bring that to life."  Girls on the Run does this through 2 initiatives:  Girls on the Run for 3rd-5th graders and Girls on Track for 6th-8th graders.  Both programs consists of 12 weeks of practices where the girls train for a 5k run and have lessons covering a variety of emotional, physical, social and intellectual development topics.  During their training, the girls also choose and complete a service event.  At the end of the 12 week season, the girls have the opportunity to complete a non-competitive 5K running event. This is a HUGE event for a lot of girls because it lets them see just how strong and wonderful they truly are.  (Check out this video if you want to see just how pumped the girls are after the run!)

What started as Molly Barker and 13 pre-teen girls in North Carolina has become a huge movement.  Today, Girls on the Run is offered in over 170 cities across North America with hundreds of thousands of girls involved in program.  Molly, you go girl.

I know I can't wait until the fall when I can start my first season as a Girls on the Run volunteer.  Running has always been an incredible source of strength for me, and I look forward to sharing the fun with some awesome chicas.  For those of you who are also interested about how you can get involved with a Girls on the Run group in your neck of the woods, check out the "Locations" tab at

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

My Latest Pinterest

Someone help me, I can't stop pinning.

For those of you who haven't discovered Pinterest, a dangerously addictive social media community for the artsy, allow me to give you some background on this little gem.

As described on its site...
"Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful things you find on the web. People use pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes."

Basically, people can upload pictures of all of their favorite things for the world to check out.  If you are a Pinterest member, you can view these images, and as you find images that you like, you can "re-pin" them, or save them to your own little inspiration board.  You can organize your inspiration boards so you have visual collections of all your favorite things.

You can browse other people's boards, leave comments on images, follow other pinners and tweet your obsessions.  You can discover a new recipe, color combo, inspirational quote or adorable pair of shoes  every 4 seconds.  Once you sign up, you'll spend hours pinning random awesome pictures, and you'll love every minute.  I know I have.

Some learning takeaways from this social media community:

  • It feels like a new site every 10 minutes because of the rate images upload.  It's incredibly dynamic, contributing to the sites addictiveness.
  • Users are introduced to more websites and images that they will love because the images are linked to their original sites.  It's kinda like discovering new artist on Pandora.  When you find a photo you're obsessed with, you can follow its link and often find a whole new blog to stalk.  There's an awesome feeling of discovery when using the site.
  • It's easy to use, easy to search and easy to find people who like what you like.
  • You can define your own style by viewing other people's.  There's a sense of individuality, even though you're in a community where everyone is doing the same thing.  
  • Warning:  In order to pin, you have to join Pinterest by "Requesting an Invite."  I was invited to join 5 days after requesting an invitation a couple of months ago.  I'm not exactly sure why Pinterest does this, but it may be to generate a stronger feeling of unity between members.
Here's one of my recent Pins from my "Recipes I Can't Wait to Try Board."  (I know it's not a complex one, but doesn't it look delicious?!)  Thanks, Stacy Berg for pinning!

and here's what a Recipe Board would look like:


And how cute of an idea are these Necktie Cuff Bracelets?  Thanks, Little Pretties Cara Veeder for pinning!

I'd love to show you more of my finds, but I've got to keep pinning.  Feel free to come check out my boards at .