Africa

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A Bright Idea! Watts Of Love

watts of love

Did you know that over a billion people live without light after the sun goes down? Families in countries all around the world struggle to survive on the light of a single kerosene lamp the size of a baby food jar. What’s worse is that these kerosene jars provide very little light while emitting toxic fumes that can lead to neurological damage and blood clots after long-term exposure. In the most desperate situations, a family can spend 65% of its...

Be Brave! Join me in adoring Amsha

I recently watched a TEDtalk on how to start a movement. Maybe you’ve seen it. In the 3 minute talk, Derek Sivers proposes that while a movement does require the audaciousness of one person who is willing to get out there and get the ball rolling, — he uses a video of a shirtless dude dancing crazily in public to illustrate his point– one person, however, does not a movement make. He further illustrates that the actions of that one...

Favorite Things: The National Museum of Mexican Art

One of my favorite things to do in Chicago is visit the National Museum of Mexican Art, although admittedly, I don’t get there as often as I’d like. In general, Chicago is a very good value when it comes to cultural museums; in addition to the Museum of Mexican Art there is the Ukrainian Institute of Modern Art, Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies, National Hellenic Museum, Chinese-American Museum of Chicago, and the DuSable Museum of African American History, just to name a few. ...

Tasty Tuesday: Hello Halva!

The holidays for me can be bittersweet because I love sweets but the gluten in cakes, pies and cookies really don’t love me back, which is why I love halva. Halva is a traditional fudge from the Middle East.  There are as many versions of this treat that you can think of from areas as diverse as North Africa, the Balkans, Eastern Europe, and the Mediterranean, as well as, South, Central and West Asia. Some halvas contain wheat flour, rice...

NOVICA: Gift shopping that gives back

Novica is a shopping site created in association with National Geographic that is dedicated to offering hard to find goods by artists and artisans from around the globe. Not only can you find jewelry, home decor, artwork and accessories from places like Bali, Brazil, Thailand and West Africa, but Novica also includes a blurb about the artist who created each item, giving you a better insight on the life of the person you are supporting with your purchases. For you savvy shoppers, the website...

Beautiful Mondays: For the Good of Argan Oil

If you have skin or hair, and suspect you have a bit of either if not both, you have probably heard of argan oil. Practically unheard of in the U.S. until recently, argan oil is created from the nuts of the argan tree, grown almost exclusively in the Berbers of Morocco. It is high in vitamin E, phenols, carotene and fatty acids and is used in skincare products to combat dry skin, acne, psoriasis, eczema, stretch marks and wrinkles, as...