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Thanks, Internet #1 - The Blog Bloc

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Thanks, Internet #1 - The Blog Bloc


Here's the thing about the internet: it gets a bad rap. Sure, there are a lot of crazy things happening in this world and sometimes the web is complicit in that crazy, but there are also a ton of great things happening out there.

One of my favorite things about the internet is that it's allowed me to connect with so many incredible people in real life. Let me put it this way: without the internet, I would have never been introduced to the work of those I've interviewed on my podcast. And I certainly never would have been able to meet many of them in person when I took the show on the road in 2015

The thing is, there are so many cool things happening and I can't possibly interview everyone on Creating Your Own Path. All of those amazing people who are spearheading projects that bring people and acts of creativity together both on the web and in person? They deserve love too! (Edit: please note that a feature here does not preclude these people and projects from being featured on CYOP someday!

So, I'm starting a new monthly series dedicated to sharing really cool projects and ideas that are taking shape in both the digital and physical realms. Ready to get started with the first installment? Let's do it!


Thanks Internet // Volume 1 // The Blog Bloc

The Blog Bloc is a brand new organization for bloggers and content creators in the Sacramento region. It was launched in an effort to support content creators of all kinds — bloggers, podcasters, creative directors, etc. — through community-building and resource-sharing. The whole project is built on two primary values I can really appreciate:

  • There is room for all of us.
  • We all can learn from one another.

I also have to tell you that this new community is run by one of my favorite humans of all time: Kachet Jackson-Henderson of The Lipstick Giraffe. She's been sitting on this idea for a long time and was determined to make it happen! Since launching the project, she's held several community events that people are raving about.

While this is a Sacramento-based venture, I'm betting she has her heart set on expansion. There are so many people around the globe who could benefit from a community like this one. I've just signed up and can't wait to attend the next event!

Want to learn more? You can get the scoop here.


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My Mighty {fine} Life List

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So, here's the deal: I make lists regularly. I love ticking boxes and putting lines through items I've accomplished. For some reason, however, I found it difficult to finish my Mighty {fine} Life List. Created by the amazing Maggie Mason of Mighty Girl, the lists (and the movement that surrounds them) are meant to capture 100 things you'd like to do before you go.

The premise behind the popular life lists is pretty great. You simply list out your goals - both big and small - and act upon them. The lists can change as we grow, which is key. Maybe an opportunity comes up that you could have never imagined... put it on the list and cross it off! Maybe you decide one of your goals is no longer as important as you once thought... remove it!

I started my own list years ago - long before I started blogging - and just let it sit unfinished. Well, not anymore! I finally took the time to write it all out and get it ready for public consumption. I feel like putting this out to the universe (well, at least to you lovely people who read this blog!) will help motivate me to really seek out new experiences and make sure they come to fruition.

Without further ado, I'd like to present:

My Mighty {fine} Life List

(Note: Accomplished items are in bold.)

  1. Visit all 50 states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
  2. Take photos of iconic bridges in all 50 states
  3. Really understand the settings on my digital camera
  4. Run (and finish) a marathon
  5. Visit all 59 National Parks in the US: Acadia, American Samoa, Arches, Badlands, Big Bend, Biscayne, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Carlsbad Caverns, Channel Islands, Congaree, Crater Lake, Cuyahoga Valley, Death Valley, Denali, Dry Tortugas, Everglades, Gates of the Arctic, Glacier, Glacier Bay, Grand Canyon, Grand Teton, Great Basin, Great Sand Dunes, Great Smokey Mountains, Guadalupe Mountains, Haleakala, Hawaii Volcanoes, Hot Springs, Isle Royale, Joshua Tree, Katmai, Kenai Fjords, Kings Canyon, Kobuk Valley, Lake Clark, Lassen Volcanic, Mammoth Cave, Mesa Verde, Mount Rainier, North Cascades, Olympic, Petrified Forest, Pinnacles, Redwood, Rocky Mountain, Saguaro, Sequoia, Shenandoah, Theodore Roosevelt, Virgin Islands, Voyageurs, Wind Cave, Wrangell Saint Elias, Yellowstone, Yosemite, Zion
  6. Take singing lessons
  7. Get on stage and sing again (even if it’s just karaoke)
  8. Take snowboarding lessons
  9. Live in a state other than California
  10. Start practicing yoga
  11. Teach a class on any subject (or be a mentor)
  12. Meet the President of the United States (it doesn’t matter who it is at the time)
  13. Go to a concert and hang out with the band backstage
  14. Go ice fishing in Alaska
  15. Let go of the material things cluttering up my life
  16. Go snowshoeing
  17. Figure out what it takes to do voice-over work and do it
  18. Take an extended (months-long) trip to anywhere
  19. Go back to England to visit family and re-visit places important to my family history
  20. Write a book
  21. See a moose (in the wild)
  22. See a grizzly bear (also in the wild, preferably from far away!)
  23. Road trip through Canada
  24. Sing at a wedding
  25. Become a tour guide
  26. Create a photo book of all of my favorite bridges
  27. Make my health a priority
  28. Foster a puppy dog
  29. Hire a stylist to tell me – once and for all – what not to wear
  30. Join a book group
  31. Be an extra in a show/movie
  32. Attend a Beastie Boys concert (Keeping it on the list. You never know. RIP Adam Yauch)
  33. Go to a grown-up summer camp like this one
  34. Travel somewhere beautiful by train
  35. Spend an entire day reading a good book on a tropical beach (without feeling guilty…like I should be doing something)
  36. “Pay it forward” at the coffee shop by paying for a stranger’s morning fix
  37. Experience the Aurora Borealis
  38. Go back to D.C. to re-visit the monuments/museums/etc.
  39. Write an article/story for a large print publication
  40. Learn more about creating and editing beautiful videos
  41. Visit Greece
  42. Visit Croatia
  43. Go glamping in the Swiss Alps
  44. Create a road trip around the world's largest everything (see unfinished Pinterest board here). Take said road trip.
  45. Eat baklava in Turkey
  46. Spend a week in a rental house with my best friends in Cape Cod
  47. Own an Airstream (and maybe live out of it for a bit)
  48. Join a CSA
  49. Take a backpacking trip
  50. Start painting again
  51. Skinny dip
  52. Travel through the Amazon rain forest
  53. Attend an awards show (preferably the Grammys)
  54. Go to Australia
  55. Visit New York City
  56. Learn another language
  57. Take a European road trip
  58. Take a Northern California road trip to experience the super cool things I usually just drive right past
  59. Sleep in a tree house or lookout station
  60. Spend hours wandering the High Line
  61. Take a Chicago girls trip
  62. Remove all of the grass from our property and replace it with a more sustainable ground cover
  63. Go geoducking
  64. Cook through an entire cookbook
  65. Find a reason to go to Antarctica
  66. Be present when my nephews experience something incredible in nature
  67. Re-vamp my print shop business model to better showcase my photography work
  68. Star gaze in the middle of nowhere with my husband
  69. Tour the White House
  70. Take a soak in the Blue Lagoon in Iceland
  71. Go hot air ballooning
  72. See Machu Picchu
  73. Change out all of the boring doorknobs in my house and replace them with beautiful ones
  74. Travel on a private plane
  75. Experience Germany’s Oktoberfest at least once
  76. Take a bicycle trip through Holland (tulip fields + windmills, please!)
  77. Attend Camp Mighty
  78. Cook lobster at home
  79. Take a road trip to see the fall colors
  80. Attend Sundance Film Festival
  81. Go sailing
  82. Be brave enough to cut my hair super short
  83. Take a helicopter ride
  84. Visit the San Juan Islands
  85. Go canoeing/kayaking somewhere beautiful
  86. Be an artist in residence in a national park (like this)
  87. Successfully grow fruit trees in our backyard
  88. Live outside of the U.S., at least for a short while
  89. Renew our wedding vows
  90. Travel to Easter Island
  91. Have dinner (and dessert, of course) with Nigella Lawson
  92. Visit Crazy Horse and Mount Rushmore
  93. Learn to can fruits and vegetables
  94. Go hunting with my husband
  95. Visit the Bonneville Salt Flats during Speed Week
  96. Photograph a ghost town at sunset
  97. Make pasta from scratch
  98. Feel the mist from Niagara Falls on my face
  99. Go to the top of the Eiffel Tower
  100. Take a photo trip to the Galápagos Islands

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Anyone else have a life list they want to share? Feel free to link up in the comment section. I'd love to see how your lists are shaping up!

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Farm to Fork Field Trip: Feeding Crane Farms

As I mentioned last week, I'm currently enrolled in Anne Ditmeyer's Skillshare class, Map Design: Learn to Communicate Places Beautifully.My project is a map illustrating the route(s) food takes to get from farm to fork here in Sacramento, which is just one out of hundreds of projects posted by students from around the world.

I've been working to set up field trips in an effort to better understand the ins and outs of the farm to fork process. Yesterday, I was lucky enough to tour Feeding Crane Farms, which is located just a few miles north of the central city.

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It was a beautiful day. Everyone on the team was happy to let me document the harvest and ask a ton of questions. I even had a chance to chat with General Manager Shannin Stein about the farm and the part they play in the farm to fork process.

Founded in 2011, Feeding Crane Farms has quickly become a respected source for fresh, organic produce among chefs and local foodies. The team supplies products to dozens of local restaurants and several grocery stores in the Sacramento area, they have a presence at farmers markets in the fall and summer months and will relaunch their Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program in the coming weeks.

According to Stein, the next several months will bring an increased focus on community partnerships, educational opportunities and events both on and off the farm. "Our goal is to really be viewed as Sacramento's farm," she said. "We are so close to town and have an opportunity to offer a place where people can come connect with farming."

Needless to say, I was very impressed by the attention to detail in their efforts to boost community engagement and cross-promotion with other small businesses. They're reaching out to unconventional partners to better serve neighborhoods in our area without much access to fresh produce and the team seems incredibly committed, not only to maintaining a sustainable business, but also to helping others do the same.

Keep your eye on Feeding Crane Farms, my friends. They're doing amazing work in the Sacramento area. If you want to learn more about the farm and get updates about future events, be sure to sign up for their newsletter on the homepage. You can also find them on Facebook here and follow them on Twitter here.

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As for my map project, I didn't get a chance to capture the delivery process to a local restaurant. However, I do know that some of that beautiful Red Russian Kale is being delivered to Corti Brothers, if any of my Sacramento friends are in the market for fresh, leafy greens.

I'm hoping to set up the restaurant portion of this field trip very soon. Stay tuned!

Your turn: Do you have a favorite small, urban farm in your community? Have you ever wondered how far your food has to travel to get to your plate?

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