Everyone should engage in an oversea’s volunteering project in a third-world country at least once in their life. I left for Soundougouba, a little village in Mali, Africa on the summer of 2005, and came back 3 months later a whole different person. At that time I was 23, on the verge of graduating from a top-tier business school and beginning a great career in Marketing. Doing this project was so opposite from who I was, a young and ambitious capitalist college girl, yet a part of me was thrilled to stumble into a whole different world. A world where greed and money wasn’t at the center of people’s lives. For those of you who never got the opportunity to volunteer abroad, here are some of the lessons I learned during that summer where I built a microcredit program, a community garden, and spent a lot of time just “being in the moment”. Live simply “There are 3 things in life: health, sickness, and the unexpected.” ~ Malian proverb Life doesn’t need to be complicated. Live simply, cultivate relationships with other people and don’t forget you really don’t need all that stuff. In my village, kids played with what they found in the trash. Old tires, cardboards and even old pots and pans. Children there are always happy and smiling. Does our children need the […]
I’ve decided to plant a garden this year. I bought seeds in February from a trusted supplier and began the sowing process indoor a few weeks later (this is California). The first seeds I transplanted outside were Organic Cherry Belle Radish. My first batch of radishes is getting ready to be picked up and eaten. I’ve always wondered if the leaves are edible, and browsing through the web I got my answer. In fact, it seems like radish tops may contain as much as six times the amount of Vitamin C as the root! Now that I have a bunch of fresh leaves I think I’ll try these recipes. Don’t they look delicious? Radish Leaves Pesto Recipe from Chocolate & Zucchini Roasted Radish with Radish Greens from Food and Wine Rustic Radish Soup from Food 52 Want more information on radishes? Here are 7 facts about radishes.
When I left my marketing job and moved to California, I became a housewife (read about it here). With more time on my hands I began analyzing what we were doing and mostly, what we were eating. While I was concerned about pesticides in conventional foods, it’s only after watching the shocking documentary Food Inc that I decided to make the plunge into organic foods. Here is why I switched from “conventional” to organic: Organic meat taste SO much better It also lessens your exposure to antibiotics, synthetic hormones and drugs used to treat animals. Organic fruits and vegetables taste better Can’t argue with that. When I eat organic raspberries, they taste just like the ones my father used to grow beside our house. Sometimes it even tastes like candy. When I taste a conventional raspberry, it tastes like pesticides. It doesn’t use as much pesticides Pesticide used has been linked to a lot of diseases. It is NOT safe. “People who have been exposed to pesticides are 70 percent more likely to develop Parkinson’s disease than those who haven’t”, according to a 2006 study published in scientific american magazine. It is safer for farmers. Because it doesn’t use as much pesticides, it is a lot healthier for farmers working around crops all day. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimates that 10,000-20,000 farmworkers are poisoned on the job due to pesticide exposure (read […]
While I was pregnant, I did a lot of research regarding diapers. First, I wanted to go with cloth diapers, and did sew a lot of inserts and cloth diapers thinking I’d used these. And while I wish I went with cloth diapering instead of using disposable because it is so much more environmentally-friendly, I ended up using disposables (mostly because we don’t have in-unit washer and dryer, and having to go out and carry dirty diapers with a baby in tow is a lot harder than it seems). I tried a bunch of different brands, beginning with the “eco-diapers” (Seventh Generation and stuff) and finally ended up with 2 brands I really like: Huggies Natural Care and The Honest Company. I’m a big sucker for the underdog, and while Huggies have great diapers, I also want to encourage a relatively small company who makes great products. The Honest Company is that. Famous for its founder, Hollywood star Jessica Alba, this organization features great quality, environmentally-friendly products. The diapers are great, plus you can buy these in bundles if you want, which saves you money. I personally order them only when I need them because I enjoy my freedom to choose as a consumer and I switch from Huggies to Honest every diaper change. They are free of unnecessary chemicals and plant-based, yet they are gentle on my son’s […]
I’m just like my mom. Which frightens me. I used to be very critical of her. But the older I get, the more I realize that I am just like her, and that she really isn’t so bad. In fact, my mother is amazing. I wish I could be exactly just like her! My mom is so passionate in life. For as long as I can remember, she had passions and hobbies. Her biggest and strongest one is music. She taught piano lessons for a long time, played organs in churches and now she’s a choral director. When I was young, she always had other passions she pursued. Whether it be sewing, knitting, be in a christian group, making loads of Budwig cream (ughh!) or painting ceramics there was always something she was doing. After years of wood painting she has taken up stain glass. There are so many things I like, so many things I have yet to discover, I can’t help but realize I’m just like her. I have a gazillion passions, and not enough time to pursue them all. This is what this blog is about. Because who are we if we have no passion? Life is short, why not get the best out of it? So, here’s what this blog may talk about: Life in general. Advice, tips, confessions, etc. Food and recipes Parenting: because being a […]
Hello world! I’ve been thinking about doing this for a while, but never really committed to blogging. As a marketer, I’ve been itching to get going, but as a human, I’m kind of shy. While I have no problem launching a very expensive marketing advertising program internationally, blogging feels so personal it kind of scares me. But, the hell with it. We are all human, we’re all trying to be happy and right now this is what makes me happy! On this blog I’ll try to share tips, ideas, and insights about food, life, crafts and more. I have decided to commit to blogging for 1 full year, and then see how things evolve. I might stop then, or reorient the blog depending on how I fell and the feedback I receive. Let’s hope everything goes well. Wish me luck!
Okay, it’s this time of the month again. The time when I bake a big batch of delicious bread for my family. While I’ve been trying to bake my own bread for years, It’s only this year that I can say I truly succeeded. Bread being on the the most common food staple in the modern world, you’d think it’s easy to bake. But it isn’t. My mother and grand-mother both baked bread. It was the most delicious thing in the world and I remember eating the best Nutela toast during week-ends spent at my grandparents’ house, and the best homemade pizza at home. My mother tried to pass along her technique, and even though I was sooo willing to learn, I failed. Multiple times. I watched her, amazed, but when I tried to repeat her process using her advice, it never turned out like her. Bread is so unique. Multiple attempts, classes and years later, I finally found my own way of baking bread. The recipe I use comes from one of my favourite bread baking books. You can find it here. Most of the time I’ll use the classic french bread recipe, and then add my own twist, whether it is herbs, grains, nuts, cheese, or other types of flour. Here’s what the process looks like: 1 – I make the starter the day before I really want […]
***Retrieved from Archives*** First published on November 8th, 2010. Marketing is evolving in a way most of us wouldn’t have thought of 10 years ago. Not only traditional media is going down, but online marketing is growing in a speed most of us thought would be impossible. E-Marketing is the new Marketing. Stop thinking about taking time to Plan (with a capital P) your strategy, because plans are now useless. The truth is, your market evolves every minute you are not looking at it. And this also includes while you are sleeping. As @RosabethKanter wrote in an article regarding Strategy planning, improvisation is now the rule in marketing strategy. Time where we would create an annual marketing plan and strategy is well past. We must now improvise, not plan. We must be able to act and react to our environment continuously, just as in an improvisational comedy game. And as much as I like improvisation, I know that this doesn’t mean I can’t go with a guide. It’s true in improvisational comedy theater, but even more true when it regards Marketing. So, how should you improvise your marketing? Structure First, you need to have a structure. In improvisational theater, it’s often the structure in place, such as leagues or associations, the place where they play etc. In marketing, it regards your marketing team. How many people do you need […]
***Retrieved from Archives*** First published on October 7th, 2010. I know it’s been a while, but like everyone else, I was busy with my life’s occupations. Even if I am still looking for a job in marketing, I realized that my paralleled activities also involved a lot of time. Talking of extra-curricular activities, I started running again a month ago. And while increasing my training time and therefore, mileage (hence the lack of time to be writing on this blog), I started to feel some pain in my left heel last week. So after a week with sore heels, I began to think (finally) that maybe it was time to change my running shoes. I haven’t calculated my mileage with the shoes I have (a pair of New Balance 768ST) because I was always on and off the field due to different injuries. But I figured out that since I had those shoes for 2 years, maybe it was time for me to buy a new pair of shoes and therefore, contribute to our economy. And you, are you consuming enough running shoes? Specialists say that you should change your running shoes each 300-500 miles and that it is better to alternate between 2 or 3 different pairs of shoes to reduce your risks of injury. Today I had a great run with my new Asics GT-2150 that […]