Category Archives: activism

Women Saving the World

A friend and co-worker sent me an article about how the Daili Lama thinks that  Western Women Are Going to Save the World. It’s a brilliant article about how much women control family finances and how our choices are changing the world. She really spells out the statistics about how much women, and I would argue mothers, decide what to buy and not buy.

Part of why I started my blog was to share and connect with other women around the world, because we can’t save the world all by our lonesome, or at least it wouldn’t be as much fun ;-).   I sure how to read some Dads in the process, but the truth is that women make the majority of household purchases.

I also like the article’s “Moment of Truth” section at the end, where it asks us each to make small choices like boycotting bottled water to help reduce oil pollution and global warming.

Do you think western women will save the world?
What steps will you take first?

Sustainable Family Finances
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

10/10/10 Work Parties

In case you’re not plugged into the movement already, this weekend  is planned to be the biggest global work party in history., the inspiring global campaign bringing people together to draw attention the most critical issue in planetary history. Here is a quick reminder to inspire you to bring your family to a work party in your corner of the planet.

One family can make a difference!

Is your family planning to attend a climate work party? 

Sustainable Family Finances
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Heating Up

Inspiring action is not easy when we are pressed by the daily logistics of running a family. We don’t see our impact on the future in the moment, which makes complacency an easy out. It’s easy to be selfish and hope others will take action.

This summer I’ve been a bit complacent. I skimmed news about climate legislation, sent a few e-actions, and simply hoped that our leaders would finally step up and deal with climate change. When they fumbled once again, I felt the perpetual disappointment that haunts climate policy.

Bill McKibben reminds me that we can’t rely on our government for a quick fix. We need to speak up louder about global warming, and create a movement that won’t take inaction for an answer. I believe that our movement needs kids and families to inspire creative action.

I’m planning a family friendly climate action on 10/10/10 in North Portland. The plan is to have fun, but we’ll also roll up our shelves and show how much we care.

Is your family planning to attend a climate action on 10/10/10?

Sustainable Family Finances
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

Ask For It

The world is abundant, but you still have to ask for want you want and need.

A few weeks ago I happened to get an interesting article on women and negotiations from a co-worker. It made a great case for why part of the pay disparity between sexes is because women simply don’t speak up and ask for it.  This should peak your attention especially if you have a daughter. The NYT article wrote about how we need to teach young girls the skill of negotiating and asking for what you want. It referenced a really intriguing  program aimed at teaching these skills to girls and women

It dawned on me that I actually didn’t know when to expect my next merit increase, as my manager had mentioned when I returned from maternity leave that my absence would affect it. It turns out after talking with HR that the leave did not affect when an increase would be allowed, and that I was actually due retroactively back to January. The kicker was that if I hadn’t asked before the end of the fiscal year I would have lost it!

I ended up with a stellar performance review and the maximum 4% increase.  Thankfully I didn’t have to learn the hard way, but it did teach me to speak up.  I will certainly keep this lesson in mind with our Girly, and work to model the skills that I’m learning mid-career.

This isn’t just a personal story or women’s issue though, its a family one. Most families need two incomes to make ends meet. Wage disparity hurts families and perpetuates inequality. If we don’t ask for change, who will?

Do you have tips for asking for raises or negotiating salaries?

Sustainable Family Finances 
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

40 Earth Days!!!!

I was delighted to watch the new American Experience film, Earth Days. Earth Days shares the revolutionary story of how the environmental movement began, why we should celebrate, and how we can work together to solve today’s global dilemmas. It’s an instant classic that should be shared in classrooms for decades to come! 

In case you missed it on your local PBS station you can watch it online, see you really don’t need cable!  The film is as entertaining and inspiring as it is educational.

As cliche as it may sound, Earth Day does matter. Hundreds or maybe thousands are inspired each year to commit to protecting the Earth. I was inspired to “grow up to be an environmentalist” when I wrote a research paper in junior high on the history of Earth Day. It wasn’t necessarily easy to be a tree-hugger during the spotted owl recession in the Northwest. While disappointing, I appreciate the way the Earth Days film highlighted how the movement did loose ground during the polarizing Reagan years by pitting jobs against the environment and insisting that we need to reduce our standard of living to save energy. Europeans have clearly shown that it doesn’t have to be that way, and are a decade ahead as a result.

Forty Earth Days later being “green” is no longer a fad, but a way of life. Our society is finally making decisions to make “Every Day Earth Day” and moving beyond the basics of recycling. Each day we vote with our wallets, and can make the choice to invest in future generations. If we invest wisely, we’ll have something to celebrate in another 40 years.

At age 13 I also created an art poster with a vow: 

I Pledge Allegiance to the Earth 
To Cherish Every Living Thing
To Care for Earth and Sky and Air
With Peace and Freedom Everywhere 

Today is our day: 4 Years. Go. 

How will your family celebrate Earth Day? 
Here’s online petition to Congress to get the party started!

Sustainable Family Finances  The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.