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Thoughts, musings, questions and inspiration from the desk of our head rebel. We write about creativity, growing a small business, how-to tutorials and popular trends in handmaking.

Three Big Reasons You Want Dirty Kids

Jill Maldonado

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I have strong sense memories of making cool, slippery mud pies in the lilac-laden air of my sunny yard when I was a kid. So, when I was grown and had kids of my own, it only felt natural to let them have the same experiences.

But, MAN, I suffered the opinions of lots of people who disagreed with me. I even lost a friend over it. (Wow. REALLY?)

Once again, science has found evidence that backs up those instincts we have as mothers. Turns out, getting dirty is an important part of growing up healthy.

Here are three big reasons why you want dirty kids...

1 - Dirt Makes Kids Happy

Scientists have identified a strain of bacterium found in soil, called Mycobacterium vaccae, which has been found to trigger the release of seratonin - the neurotransmitter that elevates mood and decreases anxiety.

2 - Dirt Makes Kids Smart

Turns out, that very same bacterium, Mycobacterium vaccae, has been shown to increase intelligence. In lab experiments, mice that had been exposed to the bacteria were able to run mazes at twice the rate of control subjects.

3 - Dirt Makes Kids Healthy

Scientists have recently developed the “hygiene hypothesis” which posits that our overly sanitized culture is actually preventing us from developing healthy immune systems. We need some exposure to germs and bacteria in order to build a resistance to them. Studies have shown that early exposure to the microbes found in dirt significantly lowers allergy and asthma rates among kids.

If you live in a place where it's not so easy to just toss your kids out into the backyard, don't worry! Seek out the green spaces nearby and meet some friends there for some good, dirty fun!

P.S. - Interested in learning more? You might want to read, Let Them Eat Dirt: Saving Your Child from an Oversanitized World.

P.P.S - I made the very first Adventure Bags for my own kids and filled them with wonderful adventuring tools like rope, compasses and magnifying glasses so they'd have everything they'd need for fun outdoor adventuring and GETTING DIRTY!

The Benefits of Letting Kids Struggle

Jill Maldonado

Copyright : Dmytro Panchenko (Follow)

Copyright : Dmytro Panchenko (Follow)

One of the hardest things about being a mom is watching my children struggle. Beginning with their first attempts to walk, watching them fall is awful. I never get used to it, no matter how many times I see it - all the scrapes and bumps it took to learn to ride a bike; the first time a friend broke their heart, the first time they suffered an injustice doled out by a trusted adult - it takes everything I have not to swoop in and try to fix it all. But I don’t.

I let them struggle. I root for them. I feel their pain. I wish for them to overcome their challenges.

I don’t fight their battles, but I have their backs.

I’m there to apply the band-aids, give hugs, lend a listening ear and a crying shoulder.

But WHY? If it’s so hard to watch my kids struggle, why do I do it?

Because struggle is what makes us strong. Struggle teaches us persistence, it teaches us the power of our own determination and the beauty of resilience. The reward of overcoming struggle is confidence, a sense of competence and an understanding that when things don’t work out as planned, we will be okay.

I want my kids to feel strong and capable long before they leave my care. That journey starts with their first step, their first stumble and the first time they decide to get up and try again.

How and Why to Encourage Your Kids to Keep a Journal

Jill Maldonado

These days, with the confluence of smart phones and social media apps there seems to be a million ways for us to express ourselves. But these public facing, digital versions of ourselves end up being a shorthand representation of who we want other people to believe we are, rather than an accurate reflection of our true selves. And like so many things, as it goes with us, so it goes with our kids.

Journaling, of the private, analog variety that uses an actual pen and paper seems that it might be going the way of the dinosaur, but in reality, it remains a vital practice to building self knowledge and analytical skills. Creating a journal practice can be an important part of developing introspection and gaining perspective on emotionally complicated situations, skills that will be just as important for the next generation as they are for ours. If you'd like to encourage your kids to start a journaling habit, here are a few guidelines to keep in mind...

There is no "RIGHT" way to journal.

Some people use journals to record accounts of their daily lives. Others keep nature journals, or art journals, or just use notebooks to write down their creative ideas. It might take some exploration to figure out what works best for your kids, so keep an open mind and encourage them try different journaling methods.

Journals are private!

Impress upon your kids that their journals are not going to be read by you or by anyone else. It makes you feel pretty vulnerable to put your true self into your writing and the fear that someone else will read your most personal thoughts is enough to stop most of us before we even get started.

Be the journaler you wish them to be.

That's right! Model the behavior that you want to see in your kids. Let them see you writing. Talk with them about how journaling helps you express how you feel; gives you a safe place to be angry; lets you list the pros and cons when making difficult decisions; gives you perspective on emotionally complicated situations; or helps you plan out tough conversations ahead of time. 

It's easy to get started.

One of the loveliest things about journaling is that it's easy to get started! Sure, a fancy journal is nice, but not necessary. A simple composition notebook can be found at any dollar store (if you want to jazz it up, check out our journal covers). You can offer up a simple ball point pen, a collection of colored pencils or markers or make a gift of a really special pen.

Prompts can help!

One of the biggest barriers to building a journaling habit is just not knowing what to start writing about. Prompts can be really helpful, so, I created this simple download with questions to get you and/or your kids started.

 

  

 

Seven Awesome Podcasts for Kids

Jill Maldonado

When my kids were little, I drove them 45 minutes each way to school. It was a bit much. For ALL of us. So, to make the best of a tough situation, we started listening to audio books in the car. Full disclosure - this was about six years before the popularity of Serial exploded the podcasting world.

Rather than being a white-knuckled test of patience, our car rides became an opportunity to be co-adventurers in each wonderful story we listened to. I was able to expose my kids to great (age appropriate) literature that was beyond their reading capabilities and each story became rich fodder for conversations, art making and pretend play.

Come to find out, recent studies have shown that kids display greater imagination and creativity after listening to audio programs  AND that listening to audio programs also improves reading comprehension.

Now that podcasts have become so popular, today's lucky parents have a treasure trove of high quality audio content to choose from to spark their kids' imaginations and since I'm a total podcast addict, I have a few to recommend.

Here are seven awesome podcasts for kids:

1 - Story Pirates

The Story Pirates (spoiler alert: they're not ACTUAL pirates, but world-class actors, comedians, improvisers and musicians) adapt stories written by kids into sketch comedy and musical theater. Often the stories devolve into utter silliness but that's what makes this podcast so charmingly entertaining. Bonus: the fact that the stories are written by actual kids might be super inspiring to a young scribe living under YOUR roof!

2 - Saturday Morning Theatre

Every Saturday morning you and your kids can travel back to the glory days of old time radio with these daring, and often funny, adventures that will capture the imagination. With stories ranging from superhero adventures and westerns to mysteries and comedies, this podcast has it all!

3 - Tumble

Tumble is a science podcast that can be enjoyed by the entire family (think RadioLab for kids) . It tackles subjects from geology to dark matter and everything in between. Somehow, it manages to magically explain even the most complex concepts in an easy to understand and entertaining way.

4 - Spare the Rock, Spoil the Child

This podcast features "indie music for indie kids" and hails from just east of Rebel Headquarters in the Pioneer Valley of Western Mass. They truly do play "music kids will love and parents won't hate". There's commentary, special requests and kid-friendly music from unlikely artists, like the Ramones and Ella Fitzgerald, and more likely (but equally interesting) artists like Dan Zanes and Moona Luna.

5 - Sparkle Stories

Sparkle Stories holds a very special place in our family's hearts. Founded by friends of  friends, Lisabeth and David Sewall McCann, Sparkle Stories is actually a subscription story service and we were among the first generation of subscribers. Their stories are sweet, gentle, full of lessons AND entertaining. I like to think if Mr. Rogers still walked among mere mortals, he would be very, very proud of the work they do which is inspired by a deep love and respect for childhood. The podcast includes one of their subscription stories per week for free.

6 - Kids on Comics

Be forewarned, there don't appear to be any new episodes being produced of this show, but there's 60+ episodes in the archive to work your way through. The Rebel family loves comics and it's super awesome to listen to this father and his two sons offer up their opinions on all things comic.

7 - Muggle Cast

Harry Potter fans hold onto your wands! This podcast dates back to 2010 and has over 100 episodes of conversation, questions, theories and news about ALL OF THE THINGS in the wizarding world.

5 Ways to Get out of the Way & Let Your Kids Be Creative

Jill Maldonado

photo credit: Corinne Shaw

photo credit: Corinne Shaw

You've probably heard many conversations about how school/video games/television [insert the scary-thing-of-the-moment here] are destroying the creativity of a generation. I don't mean to diminish any of those concerns, but the fact of the matter is, as parents, we cannot single-handedly battle whatever outside influences we feel are endangering our kids' capacity to be creative. There is a whole lot we can do inside our own homes and within our relationships with our kids to protect the creativity they were born with. Ironically, what that looks like is stepping back and DOING LESS.

Here are five simple ways to get out of the way and let your kids' creativity flourish.

1) Think Process Over Product

Process art is all about the experience kids have while they’re creating. The end product isn’t the focus. Emphasizing process encourages kids to try different materials and experiment with different ideas because they are released from the expectation that the resulting product will look a certain way. Avoid projects that come with samples, photos of finished pieces or (ack!) instructions. Craft kits are fun, but they can stifle creativity by stimulating a kid's desire to "do it right".

2) Answer a Question with a Question

Kids who are still building their creative muscles might seek direction from you if a project is open ended. Your kids might ask questions like,  "Does this look good?" or "Should I use blue or red?". Turn those questions right back around with responses like, "How do you feel about it?" "Both red and blue are awesome colors. Can you imagine what each one might look if you used it?" The goal here is to help them develop creative decision making skills and see that there is more than way to do things. By refusing to offer too much guidance, you're actually helping them develop their own instincts (which will serve them well in other aspects of their life).

3) Have Supplies at the Ready

Let's get real, not everyone has the resources for a Pinterest worthy project room. Work with what you've got to make it quick and easy for kids to get creative when inspiration strikes. This could look like a corner desk with shelves, a rolling cart with supplies, a plastic tote that fits neatly in your closet and a vinyl table cloth at the ready to spread out wherever there's space. The idea is that they should be able to access this stuff and start a project without too much help from you. A quick word about supplies... not all art supplies have to come from the strip mall craft store. Your kid is probably already an expert at collecting odd and interesting things as they move through their days. My younger kid was a hoarder of rocks, my older one had a collection of (of ALL things) orange peels. The weird things they gravitate to speak to their imagination for some reason. Embrace that. (By the way, this is an excellent way to demonstrate the beauty of upcycling - just sayin'.)

4) Practice "Benign Neglect"

Benign Neglect: noun  - a noninterference that is intended to benefit someone or something more than continual attention would.
As much as possible IGNORE your kid while they're being creative. Be nearby, but occupied. Fold some laundry, read a book or do some knitting. If you're too much in their awareness as they create, it's hard for them to lose themselves in what they're doing. They more they can get lost inside their own heads, the deeper the relationship they're building with their inner voice. As a mom to teenagers, I cannot emphasize enough the strength they will draw from being able to listen to themselves!

5) Let Them See You Being Creative

Wanting our kids to be creative means we need to model that behavior. You don't need to be an accomplished artist - even better if you're not! Demonstrate the courage to try new things and if you "mess up", do it with grace and humor. Enough said. 

Remember, kids are innately creative. We just need to create the conditions that allow them to develop creative confidence.  

Now get out there and get out of the way! ;)

P.S. What do you do to exercise your own creativity? I'd love to hear about it!

Scheduling Your Kids for Success is Overrated

Jill Maldonado

Beyond wanting to keep our children safe and reasonably happy, one of the greatest wishes parents have for their kids is that they become successful.

Conventional wisdom tells us that the best way to do that is to pack their schedules with lessons and activities while they’re young so they have the chance to develop the skills and talents they’ll bring into adulthood.

We all know the power of FOMO (fear of missing out), but it’s got nothing on FOYKMO (fear of your kids missing out). We can’t stand the thought that something they miss out on when they’re young will have far-reaching implications for their adult lives. So, we feel compelled to enroll them in chess club, soccer, gymnastics, dance and piano lessons.

Believe me, I totally get it! When my kids were little, my dreams for them far outstripped the number of hours in a day and I’d find myself wistfully reading class descriptions and camp mission statements while visions of enrichment activities danced in my head.

But, recent studies are finding that kids with less structured schedules actually have better executive functioning skills and are more self-motivated.

What I’ve learned in parenting my own kids has reinforced those findings. I didn’t overschedule my young kids, not because I possessed any great parenting wisdom, but because my kids simply wouldn’t have it. They are both extraordinarily strong willed and if they don’t want to do something, they are not going to do it. Besides music, (one plays the violin, the other plays the cello) they were not interested in any other extracurricular activities - at all.  And I’ll admit, that was hard for me at first. It was tough to listen to my friends talk about everything their kids were doing and not feel like I was letting my own kids down by not INSISTING they do more.

But fairly early on, I began to see how much my kids benefitted from truly being free with their free time. By the time they were three and five years old, we’d instituted “stay at home days”. One day a week, we went nowhere and nothing was asked of any of us so we were all free to spend our time however we wanted.

The interests my kids developed as they grew up were authentically their own and they developed amazing persistence and deep focus skills. While their peers were at camp being led through a day packed with activities, my kids were teaching themselves how to shoot and edit videos, or making anatomically correct internal organs from felt to put into their stuffed animals. Having agency over how they spent their time taught my kids how to tune into themselves and helped them build a sense of competency as they learned to master the things they were interested in.

While their high school transcripts won’t be jam packed with impressive activities, my kids are  fascinating and thoughtful young people, brimming with their own ideas about life and the world. And parental-bias aside, their self-awareness and self-motivation definitely makes them different from a lot of kids their age.

Does that mean that I think YOU should cancel all the lessons, camps and sports your kids are involved in? Nope. Not necessarily. But I would encourage you to release your anxieties about them missing out on something if you do pare down their schedule (and take comfort in the fact, that science is behind you). If they’re in charge of how they spend their time, what they miss out on will pale in comparison to what they will gain.

Spotted on Instagram: A Blanket Fort in Action!

Jill Maldonado

As I design a product, I dream into how a kid will play with it. What uses will they find for it? What feelings will it inspire? What will the tactile experience be? That's why it was so magical to come across this photo Joe's mom posted on Instagram. It was the perfect realization of what I imagined when I designed the Blanket Fort!

Apparently, it's his FAVORITE birthday gift! Huzzah!

When I reached out to Joe's mom to ask if I could share this photo, she also told me that spending time in his Blanket Fort has inspired Joe to read more. Awesome! That makes me all kinds of happy.

Have you given a Blanket Fort to a kid you love? If you have photos of them enjoying it, please share! It makes my day.

10 Valentine's Gifts Made With Heart and Soul

Jill Maldonado

Valentine’s Day is coming and during these troubling times - REBEL that I am - I feel the urge to radically, vigorously and unapologetically propagate love. Imagine if you would, an army of fierce compassion and bad-ass empathy tearing down the walls of intolerance with heart shaped bombs...

Okay, that might be a bit militant. But I really NEED to celebrate love right now and one way I want to do that is with handcrafted gifts that are imbued with heart and soul by the artists who make them.

I took some time to collect a few ideas and I’m sharing them so you can be a love warrior too. There are gifts here for writers, superheroes, book lovers, adventurers, art collectors, treasure hunters, snazzy dressers, tiny walkers, ellie dreamers and the one you want to grow old with sitting on the front porch. <3

1| Pink Flying Super Hero Set from Love Lane Designs  2| Our Red Heart Journal from Reclaimed TShirts 3| White Baby Mocs with Gold Hearts from Luxe + Ro 4| Pink Elephant Pillow from Little Korboose 5| Heart in Hand sculpture by Cathy Broski 6| Ralph Waldo Emerson Library Candle from PaddyWax 7) Valentine Secret Box at Hearthsong 8) I Love You Collar Stays from Peaces of Indigo 9) Our Red Adventure Bag 10) Red Folding Adirondack Chair from Orvis

Ready...

set...

GO LOVE!

Hey Grandparents! Here's 5 Easy Ways to Bond with your Grandkids!

Jill Maldonado

In recent years, studies (like this one and this one) have shown that kids who feel connected to their extended family and have a sense of family history are more confident, more resilient and more likely to have successful relationships later in life. As grandparents, you have an important role to play in their lives, but distance, changing culture and other circumstances can make it difficult to bond with your grandchildren. 
 

Not to worry! Here are five simple things you can do to to forge a strong relationship with your grandkids! 

1 - Create Together

There's no better way to create connection and memories than to have fun making something together. Doing something as simple as baking cookies becomes a cherished memory. How about building a bird house or just drawing a picture? Pay attention to things your grandkids are already drawn to and use that as your entry point.

 

2 - Pass Along Something Your Grandparents Taught You

As we hurtle ever faster toward the future, it's important to stay connected to the past. You are uniquely qualified to help preserve and pass down skills that are in danger of being forgotten. My Nana taught me how to finger knit. I'd never even HEARD of finger knitting and I thought it was the coolest thing in the world. I can't wait to teach my grandchildren how to do it! Is there something you learned as a child that your grandkids haven’t had the opportunity to learn? Pass it down!

3 - Share Their Parents' Childhood with Them

Dig out the baby books, scrap books or old family photos. Tell them stories about what their mom or dad were like as kids. The idea that their parents were once kids seems distant and abstract, make it concrete by sharing some awkward jr. high school photos or stories of how their dad learned to ride a bike. Learning about their parents’ ups and downs will give kids perspective on their own difficulties and give them real examples of resilience and persistence.

4 - Have THEM Teach YOU Something!

Try asking them to teach you how to play their favorite video game and then PLAY with them. Ask them how to text message or how to use their favorite app. Let them be the authority on something, it's a wonderful way to show that you respect the things they know and like. Trust me, if you learn how to play Pokemon, they'll tell all the kids at school how awesomely cool you are!

5 - Stay in Touch!

If you're far away from your grandkids, use every means available to stay in touch. Become pen pals and use actual pen and paper to correspond. A fun way to keep up a correspondence is by starting a letter journal. Buy a special journal for each grandchild and take turns writing entries in it and mailing it back and forth. When the journal is full you have an instantly archived record of your correspondence. Then you can get a new notebook and start a new chapter in your relationship! (Our reusable journal covers are perfect for that!)  Keeping in touch over distance lets you can skip the stilted conversations about their favorite subject at school when you visit.

It might be tempting to feel like everyone's just too busy to make time for these kinds of activities, but believe me, you are going to be creating bonds that inform the kind of grandparents your grandkids become. That's pretty powerful stuff and well worth the effort! You can do it!


 

Doubling Down on the Power of Creativity

Jill Maldonado

I've been working hard on building my business for a few years now - constantly moving forward with new designs, new shows, new shops. But, something happened in November that stopped me in my tracks. The unimaginable happened and the candidate that I thought could never be elected, was.

The week that followed was dull, gray, depressing as I tried to piece together how we had come to this and how we would move forward. And then, much like a drowning victim being pulled out of icy waters, I was revived by the voices of other artists who were talking about what we can do next.

First, I saw an Instagram post from Megan Auman, a jewelry designer and educator, that hit me, like a gust of air bringing me back to life.

 

"I believe that what the world needs now is more people engaging in art, developing their creativity, and flexing their imaginations, and I know that the more of us who are out there teaching art, the better off we'll all be.

Oh. My. Yes!

Our humanity is rooted in our creativity. Making art connects us to people, creates compassion for our environment, demands that we face our vulnerability and builds empathy.

Megan's call to action got me fired up, but I still wasn't quite sure what that meant for me, personally. What can I teach? I'm a self-taught sewist, so I've always hesitated to teach anyone else how to sew (what if I teach them something weird or wrong?). I ruminated on it for several weeks. (That's my way of working out problems - I let them tumble around in the back of my mind while I do other things.)

Then, a friend of a friend of a friend, shared the work of Stephanie Syjuco with me. Stephanie's protest banners struck the match that turned the initial spark of inspiration into a roaring flame.

Stephanie had shared a google doc with inspiration and templates for creating protest banners and I knew I wanted to make one and I wanted to do it in community with other people. Suddenly, it dawned on me that I have the space, materials and tools to invite local friends in to create banners of their own!

Creating side by side with people I knew and people I came to know better was comforting, healing and inspiring. One family couldn't finish their banners before they needed to leave (to go to a march, of course!) so they brought home materials to finish them. The mom kept me updated with photos documenting their transformation as she and the kids delved into this form of art making and began to see all around them the possibilities for making more art. We are now in a positive feedback loop as we continually inspire each other, personally and artistically and they've been back to the studio again to continue work on their banners.

I'll take more of that, please!

All of this has inspired me to begin a new chapter of my business. I'm still designing new products, working with shops and doing shows, but I'm super proud to announce that I'm now offering banner making workshops. Fabric banners are an incredible vehicle for self expression - they don't have to be political! They don't even have to have words! Using materials that have been reclaimed for upcycling and requiring only simple tools makes it an easy entry point to creativity for people who hadn't previously considered themselves artists.
 

“I never thought of myself as an artist, but this art, I could do more of.”
— Diego, 12 year old workshop participant

With a respectful tip of the hat to artists who continue to inspire me, I'm excited to inspire others and humbly serve the notion that the more of us who are teaching art, the better off we'll all be.

5 Mission Driven Businesses That Inspire Me to Do More Good

Jill Maldonado

As the founder of a mission driven business, I'm attracted to and fascinated by other businesses that are trying to effect change in the world. I love to see how they put their values into action and I draw a tremendous amount of inspiration from the good they do and how they do it. There are a few big companies that get a lot of attention for their extraordinary dedication to their mission, like Patagonia, but I'm excited to share a few with you that you might not have heard about.

Here's a list of 5 mission driven businesses that inspire me to do more good.

1) Alabama Chanin

Alabama Chanin is a lifestyle company producing beautifully designed and thoughtfully made goods in Florence, Alabama. They use organic cotton in their products that they painstakingly source from seed through fabric, as well as using repurposed and reclaimed materials. (Yay!!) Their educational program, The School of Making, strives to preserve the hand sewing skills that literally built this country (Betsy Ross, anyone?). And, in an age where more and more companies claim they can't afford to manufacture in the U.S., Alabama Chanin employs dozens of local women in rural Alabama to hand sew their products and pays them a living wage to do so. That has a radically positive impact on their local economy.  I am super inspired by both the local and educational components of their business model AND the utterly lovely way in which it all comes together.

2) Gather Here Stitch Lounge

Gather Here Stitch Lounge is a self-described "Part sewing studio, part fabric and yarn shop" in Cambridge, MA that aims to put everyone in touch with their inner maker. Recently, they've been using their platform to encourage all citizens to choose inclusion and progress. Their "You Belong Here" window installation displays stitched affirmations collected from fans and friends from all over the world, so everyone who walks by feels the love and hope we all need so desperately right now. PLUS, they've been opening up their studio free of charge to folks who want to work on the #pussyhatproject in community with others. I crush super hard on folks who build community and create a space where people can connect with themselves and each other!

3) A Mighty Girl

A Mighty Girl is the world’s largest collection of books, toys, movies, and music for grownups dedicated to raising smart, confident, and courageous girls. It's an incredibly well curated collection that's only gotten better with time. I first became aware of Mighty Girl back in 2012 when their long form Facebook posts starting to appear in my feed. They use their social media platform to highlight amazing women and girls throughout history, all over the world. A recent post featured India's only female truck mechanic and I just think that rocks. Every time I read one of their posts, I learn something valuable and inspiring to pass along to my own kids. Big thumbs up to a business that saw a need (more awesome stuff for girls) and leaped up to fill it!

4) Stasia's Style School

There's no better way to tell you about Stasia's style school than to use her own words. It's a "5-week online class and lifelong sisterhood that will teach you how to identify YOUR own personal and unique style so you can be the BRAVE BOLD BEAUTIFUL woman that you are…EVERY. DAMN. DAY!" I absolutely LOVE Stasia's empowering message to women and her emphasis on what she calls "inside out congruency" which is essentially, getting your outside self to accurately reflect the fabulousness of your inside self. Her love of thrift store shopping is the cherry on top. (All four members of my family LOVE thrift stores - every time we travel to a new city, the first thing we do is explore the thrift stores there.)  Oh! And the cherry on top of the cherry is the utterly contagious joy in every single one of her photos. Mad, mad props to Stasia for speaking to women who feel that the conventional fashion industry falls short of encouraging self love.

5) The Good Men Project

Simply the name and the tagline that reads, "The conversation no one else is having", make me want to leap from my chair and pump my fist in the air. YES! In a world that offers precious few opportunities for men to connect to themselves and each other, The Good Men Project is a media company for curious, intelligent, compassionate men to share their thoughts about everything from fatherhood, family and sex to ethics, war, gender and politics. When I feel despair about the current political situation and feel there's nothing significant I can do to effect change, I remind myself that raising the next generation to be compassionate, independent thinkers with the strength of character to say and do what they believe is right, is a radical way to improve the future. Changing cultural norms around masculinity and gender are a big, huge part of that. Thank you, The Good Men Project!

See why I'm so inspired?! These companies absolutely rock and when I support them, I get an awesome rush of happiness that I'm taking part in the good they're doing in the world.  Win, win, baby!

There are lots more do-good companies out there! What are some of your favorites?