If you aren't growing, you aren't really living. That's how we feel about it.
You can just forget the bucket list particulars and adopt this life lesson: Always be quest-driven. And define quest-driven as searching for something new to learn or experience. It does not matter what it is as long as it is new to you!
Pinterest and blog reading are great if they propel you to create, grow in your faith, improve your craft, fulfill a dream, etc. If they aren't doing one of those things, they are a waste of your time. I don't know any blogger or pinner who desires a passive audience. Let's face it, we all want to be world changers through our voices on the Internet. We want to inspire at the very least. (And for the record, pinning to a board is not memory-making collecting as talked about in a previous post.)
We hope that you, too, will be inspired by our "treasures" of the week.
Denise: I have been dreaming about a cross-country road trip since I was in high school in the 70's. I think the main reason I never just made it happen was because I wanted it to be all or nothing. I have finally come to the realization that all or nothing is not even possible. There is just too much to see. Tessa and I will be leaving for a three-week trip out west in the beginning of June. We even have a little countdown thingy on our sidebar! We will be chronicling it here and on Instagram.
Because, as you already know, we are all about the story, whenever possible we will be staying in soon-to-be-friends' homes. I say soon-to-be friends because we will be lodging with perfect strangers that we hooked up with through Airbnb. Did I say, "perfect"? You bet I did. Whether we love our hosts or not, we will have a story to tell you, our blog readers, and our jealous family members.
So my suggestion to you: Plan a trip, near or far, and stay with perfect strangers. Go check out Airbnb!
I love Instagram. As a busy mom of four, I spend a lot of time between runs, and Instagram is my go-to time waster. I love to follow unique and inspiring small shops. One of my first finds and most definitely my favorite is walk in love. They are a fabulous not-so-little-anymore business with a great back story.
From their blog:
T.J. Mousetis started walk in love. in 2005 with one goal - to raise enough money to travel to Russia on a mission trip. He purchased 100 blank, royal blue t-shirts, and printed the phrase “walk in love.” across the chest. T.J. sold them to friends, church members and even a stranger or two online (back in the days of MySpace. Crazy!).
With the success of those 100 original royal blue t-shirts fueling him, T.J.’s passion for t-shirts exploded. By 2008 walk in love. was a company with multiple well-selling designs and a demand from friends and fans to “get bigger!” Knowing that expansion for walk in love. needed to happen quickly and creatively, T.J. reached out to a cute girl from church - who was a professional photographer. That photographer was Brooke Courtney - and within a year of that first Facebook message, T.J. and Brooke tied the knot. (Insert ‘heart eyes emoji’ here.)
Upon combing their creative powers, T.J. and Brooke dove head first into making walk in love. a full-time business - with a new website, dozens of new shirts and styles, and even a tiny kiosk at their local mall.
For the last two years I have been more purposeful in what I say or represent. For me this company helps me do that. They truly walk in love through their social media. T.J. and his wife Brooke (I talk like they're my friends) are representing our God well. And through their business, I can wear a line of clothing that gets noticed and asked about. And it keeps me mindful of who I am representing.
So even though I really don't want to share their line of clothing--because when they release a new design it's gone in a few hours--go check them out! Read their blog. See their heart. See their newborn baby girl, June. Meet the other amazing employees of this great company. Go find them on Instagram @walkinlove @tjmoustis @brookecourtney. And then go walk in love.
In the beginning of 2014, I started seeing a lot of people in my Instagram feed posting pictures of themselves with the hashtag #IamSocality. Naturally, I was curious. What I found was a community, albeit barely formed, just starting to breathe. Socality literally means a social community for all eternity. As stated on their website:
"Socality is committed to creating spaces of belonging online and turn these into real life transactions. We exist to build local communities and connect these globally. Through our platforms we will help connect and create influencers for eternity and mobilize individuals to serve and impact their local communities."
I see it as the fulfillment of God's call to be community-dwellers and makers, to love people.
In October, I hopped on a plane to Portland for SocalityPDX. I walked into the conference with hundreds of strangers that held the same intense passion for community that I did, and I walked out with friends. Socality has changed the way I interact with people both in person and on social media, giving me the confidence to reach out to my local community (read about it here) and giving me friends from near and far. It has been one of the biggest influencers in my life in the last year, and I love nothing more than to pass that influence on to the people around me.
So get out there! Check out the hashtag. Reach out to the people around you, whether they live next door or in the next state. I promise you that being a community-maker is worth it.