High Five for Fridays! Kiva Life & Love

Swirls of Life Excitement & a Kiva Connect Moment

Well hello my little jelly bean kittens, and happy Friday! I am really really excited to have you here today. You see, today is my last day in my  current job so I am all amped up.  I am excited and nervous about starting the new job on Monday.  For today, I will focus on feelings of excitement on all that is around the corner.  YAHOO!

And I’ve got to tell you, a Friday like this sure does call for oh-so fun selfie. You ready?

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Along with this being my last week of work, here are few other hightlights from my week:

1. I have a lovely daffodil plant in my blogging space /office, and it is in full bloom.  The bright yellow makes me happy, and has be believe that spring is around the corner.

2. Finally finding a way to help my sister with her April wedding by crafting the most intensive wedding timeline ever. And you know what? I love it, and I am in my element. Vendors. Color coding.  Schedules. Ah, I love a good wedding timeline.

3. I am reading The Rosie Project and I am in love. It is a sweet and smart romantic book that is oh-so charming… It’s a book that I just want to crawl up with and devour. In fact, I have. yummy.

4. I came across Fit Brain app, which has fantastic challenges and puzzles to keep my brain young and nimble.

5.  On Wednesday, I went into where would be my new agency and I got even more excited about my new role. I will be learning so many new skills and developing into a real life big kid SEO exec which is such an amazing career move for me. {Again, YAHOO!}

6. I was entertained by Olympics curling. Huh, who knew?

I hope that your week was filled with laughter ad small victories, I know that mine was.

This week, I had on my editorial calendar to share a baby elephant update along with my latest Kiva loan.  Then, I read this heartbreakingly honest interview with an elephant poacher.  In this interview, the story from the poacher {who served two years in jail}  develops that one of the reasons he began to poach was because of financial difficulty.  In fact his farm hit hard times, he was unable to cope and he was lead down the inhumane path. The poacher knew what he was doing was wrong, but the lure of black market pay was too enticing for him.   As you know, my heart is with the elephants and with environmental conservation.  But this article gave me a different perspective and had me wondering a bit. What if the poacher’s farm didn’t have  a famine? What if he was able to continue his farming efforts? Would he have turned to becoming an elephant poacher?  Then it clicked: Kiva.  By assisting loans in countries of high possibility of elephant poaching, I am driving a positive influx economic development for families.  Sure, this is simplistic.. I get that. But, it’s a connection for sure. And I know that it’s small, but I’ve got to start somewhere, right?  With that in mind, for the reminder of the year the majority of my Kiva loans will be going to areas with a high impact or possibility for elephant poaching. It’s my small way to hopefully make a big difference.

{Whew. Off my soapbox now… I get really worked up about elephants…}

With that in mind, let me share with you February’s Kiva loan: Eric from Kenya.

Eric is a 33-year-old married man. His business is located in a rural area and his primary customers are small scale. He describes his biggest business challenge to be transportation problems and the fact that tea production declines during the cold seasons.  He will use the loan to buy more stock of tea leaves for resale. His business goal is to excel within five years. He hopes that in the future, he will be prosperous.

If you are interested in funding your own Kiva loan, you can learn all about the process here!

As you may recall, throughout 2014 I am pledging $25 of monies raised through sponsorships towards Kiva loans per month. For more info about my pledge, you can read about it here.

With that in mind, look at this sweet lovely baby elephant! This is one of the ellies from the I Heart Ellies campaign last October. I mean really, look at that joy!

And now, it is my pleasure to bring you a travel and photographing lovin’ Jamie from Ink + Adventure.  Guys, Jamie is living in Taiwan living through photography and creative writing which comes across in her blog. And I have to tell you, everytime I hop over to Jamie’s space I am always so excited at what I fill find. Photography tips? Check. Photos from Bai?  Check.  Awesome DIY projects that look chic but simple to complete? Check.  Tutorials on packing successfully? Yup, she’s got that too. Essentially, she has got it goin’ on. And I can’t wait for you to meet her.

 Ink + Adventure

Blog // BlogLovin // Twitter // Pinterest // Instagram

Tell me about yourself Jamie:  I traded in my career, car, and stainless steel kitchen for the life of an aspiring writer who drives a scooter and bakes in a toaster oven… and I couldn’t be happier about it! Ink + Adventure is an extension of my creative passions for writing and photography, a collection of travel stories and expat exploits, and shares both the struggles and the successes I encounter every day as an American living in Taiwan.

What makes your heart sing? Travel – I love getting outside of my comfort zone, exploring somewhere new and capturing it with my lens, soaking in the atmosphere and storing up memories.

If we were to have a coffee date, what would I treat you to? a peppermint mocha – they don’t serve them in Taiwan and I’ve been seriously craving one for months!

A personal goal for 2014 is to love myself more. How do you take care of yourself or make time for you? I’m an introvert so “me time” is crucial. Even something small like painting my nails, journaling, or finding a spot of sun to sit in can help recharge my batteries. I try to remember that I won’t be giving my best to anyone [including me] if I don’t make time to take care of myself.

You just won an all expense trip anywhere in the world for two weeks. Where do you go? Who do you take with you? I’ve always wanted to cruise the Mediterranean- traveling around Greece on a private sailboat with my Husband and friends sounds like heaven. Sunshine, blue water, ancient ruins, amazing food and plenty of wine… what more could you want?

Give me five words to describe yourself:  Creative, Independent, Adventurous, Determined, Compassionate

Get to know Jamie better through these posts:

A Letter to My Pre-Expat Self  // Bangkok: Wat Pho // Decide that  You Want it  // 10 Things About  Life in Taiwan

Here are a few posts of Jamie that I loved, loved loved:

Coffee Tasting in Bali // 5 Tips for Better Travel Photography // 12 Travel Essentials {Packing List} // Eating with Food Allergies Abroad

I mean just look at that beach! Doesn’t that look just divine in the cold days of winter? Make sure to hope over and say hello to Jamie, she is a gem!

Now, my love birds.. what plans do you have for this weekend? Anything fab and wonderful? Adventures are to be had my dears, let’s go and find it!  HAPPY FRIDAY!

 

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