Showing posts from September, 2012

Interview: Being Homeless

Next month there are two days to remind us of people who are often forgotten—the homeless. In 2011 there were 636,017 people homeless in America. World Homeless Day is October 10 and World Habitat Day is October 1. In honor of these two days, I am featuring an interview today with Angela Smith.

Angela is the author of two books End of Mae and No Money Marketing, and the writer of popular blog Dandilyon Fluff. However, Angela also experienced being homeless on and off for five years from 1986 to 1991. As someone who pulled her way out of homelessness, she is an example of how the system works and how it doesn’t.
1.       How did you become homeless?
I became homeless as a runaway at 16.  At first I stayed with random friends but when that hospitality ran out my only choice was to live directly on the street. The first night I was wandering around in the dark confused on what to do next. A carload of teenage guys started following me around and I realized how alone and vulnerable I was. …

Get Outta Here

It’s time to turn off the computer. Walk outside. Get in your car and go back to nature. I mean it. After you finish reading this blog, you will know the best time to get out there. Haven’t you missed feeling a real breeze on your arms instead of air conditioning? Or the way the trees look against the sky? September is a month of loving the outdoors. Summer starts to cool down and you can get outside. Believe it or not, you can do this for free and help a charity at the same time.

Here’s your chance. Next Saturday, September 29th, is National Public Lands Day. The National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management have all declared it as a fee-free day. You can check the links above to find a wildlife refuge, park or other recreation area you want to visit and make sure it is included. As part of Serve Outside September (S.O.S.) this month the Children and Nature Network (C&NN) will get a buck for everyone who signs up to sp…

Dear God

Dear God,
I often wonder what you would have me do to help others. It sometimes seems like I can’t help someone who really needs it, for how does that person find me? And even if he did, how could I truly help in the all ways he might need it? Providing food and money only helps with physical needs when spiritual needs can outweigh those. Someone in the grips of despair has emotional needs, too.
You say that pure religion is caring for widows and orphans. That lets me know that caring for others is important to you, but I don’t have enough money to support another family. Or do I?

One thing that I have found is a way to pool my money with others by sponsoring a child through a group like Compassion International or World Vision. These organizations take the monthly amount I send them and combine it to provide services for many children in one area.
The wonderful thing is I’m not just providing for someone financially whom I’ll never know. I can write to my child and hear back from hi…

When Life Gives you Lemons

Those of you who have followed my Working Mother Magazine blog the last couple of years know that I couldn’t get through September without sharing that it’s National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. This designation has only been around a few years, but I’ve written about it the last two because I have a son who was diagnosed with cancer at the age of five.
Thanks to a lot of prayer and two surgeries, he has been cancer free for almost six years. I’m thanking God for his remission. His great grandfather died of the kind of cancer with which he was diagnosed.
I have been volunteering for the American Cancer Society for over a year now and am also the captain of my church’s Relay for Life team Angels for a Cure.Although the American Cancer Society is a great organization and I love Relay for Life, there’s another organization that’s dear to my heart because of my son.
It’s Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF). Alex is a little girl who was diagnosed with a childhood cancer known as n…