Sunday, July 10, 2011

The Adventure Continues

As I move toward launching my non-profit, The Love Infinitely Project, my adventures in giving are moving to a new home.  This will continue to stand as the archive of the year that started it all!  I am so grateful to have this blog to look back on as the history of my transformation.  It's crazy to see all that happened over the year.   Every post on here is my heart and soul opening up more and more.

I will always come back here to remind myself of my mission.  But it's time to move forward into the next chapter and introduce new characters.  The Love Infinitely blog will not just be my continuing adventure but will also be a place where others will get to so as well.  A collective of like-minded people sharing their dreams, loves, activism and how they are spreading the message of loving infinitely in their communities.

We are building our tribe and changing the world.  All the while changing ourselves in the process.

While I am getting ready for the launch of the official Love Infinitely Project website, the new blog will serve as source for myself and others to share what they’re up to.  You’ll get the latest news on my progress and learn about others who are out there making a difference as well.

If you want to be a part of the collective, email your story to:!



The adventure continues...

Friday, December 31, 2010

My Favorite Things: The 2010 Recap

This year felt like one long episode of Oprah's Favorite Things.  Except it was MY favorite things that I was giving away and MY favorite people and causes that I was giving to.  Not quite as flashy as Oprah's but the intention behind the giving was the same.  LOVE.    

And in the process, I learned so much about myself and the way the Universe works.  Do good and good comes back to you.  It's the Law isn't it?  So simple.  What you put out comes back to you.  Well, if I needed evidence of that, this year it was shown to me over and over again.  Every day.  Not that anyone should give to get.  It's just inherent in the nature of giving. 

My favorite of all things to give is time.  Donating time/volunteering changed my life and gave me more than I could imagine or give back.  Not only did I meet some of my greatest new friends volunteering but some of my favorite days and moments of my year life happened on those days.  My life will never be the same after this year.  

I have new like-minded friends, causes I care passionately about, new favorite places, a changed perspective on the nature of the world and a new direction in life.  I now know more about myself and what I want to do with the rest of my days.  I want to make giving my full-time job.  Up until now, I have done everything I ever wanted to do since I was a little girl.  I crafted the life of my dreams.  But somehow, after this year, it no longer feels like mine.  The causes I have dedicated myself to, and giving every day, are now what I want to do.  So I plan on creating a new life based on giving.  I am going to take a leap of faith, follow my heart and create the new life of my dreams.  (More on that to come!)

Now for the re-cap of my favorite moments of this year:

1.  Operation Beautiful - I think self-esteem is the key to changing the world.  You have to fearlessly be yourself and love yourself for it.  Only then can you really begin to give to the world.  Change yourself to change the world.  The world will become as you are.

2.  My mom's first tattoo - Still as beautiful as the day she got it!

3.  Jewelry - I continue to make jewelry for all my loved ones and that jewelry continues to bring them good luck.  It's crazy the things that have happened to them shortly after receiving their piece.  Found the love of their lives, were gifted thousands of dollars, found a new path in life...  All true stories.

4.  Volunteer days with Animal Acres & Sea Shepherd - Beautiful days surrounded by compassionate hearts.  World Fest, Compassionate Cooking Event, The Great Shark Affaire, 4th of July Pignic and all the non-event work days.  Some of the best days ever.

5.  India - My incredible adventure in India with VegNews Magazine and VegVoyages.  Even though I loved all the time we gave, our day at Animal Aid Udaipur was by far one of the greatest days giving love.  Animal Aid does incredible work for animals and the ones I met that day, I will never forget.  I absolutely promise to return again. 

6.  The Freedom Awards -  I had the incredible opportunity to volunteer with Free The Slaves for the 2010 Freedom Awards after-party, Freedom Rocks.  Their mission is to end slavery worldwide and the awards celebrate heroes of the anti-slavery movement.  It was an amazing night and I hope to continue working with Free The Slaves in the future.

7.  Slaughterhouse Memorial -  My hometown is factory farm central.  Feedlots surround the city and there is a major slaughterhouse just minutes away from my childhood home.  Over Christmas weekend my mom and I decided to set up a memorial for the lives that are so often forgotten.  I created 2 memorial posters with pictures and fresh flowers.  At midnight on 12/26, we headed out.  What we felt, I can't even describe.  Or what we saw...  It was an unforgettable experience that will stay with us forever.  But we were so proud of ourselves for dropping off our messages of love, dedicated to the beautiful souls who lose their lives every minute of every day.

I have many more favorite moments but I picked 7 because it is my favorite number/lucky number.  Can't wait to see what 2011 has store.  I feel like this year has inspired me to give even more next year.  That's right, the giving will continue.  Forever.  It has become part of my life.  So much that there is no need to plan or worry about what to give, it just happens.  Naturally.  Every day.  

Happy New Year!


"The more one forgets himself by giving himself to a cause, or another person to love - the more he actualizes himself." --Viktor Frankl

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tomorrow makes it a year...

December 1st, 2009 was when I started all this and it's amazing how I have changed.  How my life has changed.  So, I want to end this year, the way I started it last December.  Make every day an event in giving.  Making it as exciting and fun as possible!

Right now I am thinking of ideas to make this month absolutely stellar.  To give more than I ever have.  Donations, time, money, gifts...  I've been extra joyous at the start of this holiday season and I'm ready to quite literally "give it my all".  

I'm ready!



Thursday, November 18, 2010

Incredible India!

So, you may have noticed that there are blogs missing in the months of August, September and October.  There is an excellent reason for that.

Earlier, in March of this year, I saw a tweet (yup, a tweet) from VegNews Magazine about joining them on a trip to India.  I assumed the link led me to a contest entry.  Nope.  Instead it was an organized trip to India through the magazine and VegVoyages.  A completely vegan trip to explore Northern India.  I don't know what got into me but I immediately sent an email to reserve myself a spot.  I got a reply back with instructions to put down a deposit.  Without hesitation, I paid.  And I never looked back.

I did have some trepidation about how the heck I was going to afford this trip (though it was quite affordable) but instead I focused on what I was committed to as opposed to how I was going to get there.  I worked extra hours every chance I got and ended up raising a good portion of my trip.  That however, took months.  I was too busy/tired for my regular yoga practice (oh the irony) and too busy to blog or do anything else.  Social life?  Non-existent.  But, I paid my full trip, airfare, vaccinations and everything else that came along with it.  (And still paying for some of it.)  It all worked out quite easily in the end.

Then finally, the trip came.  And Oct, 8th 2010, I was off to London.  Yes, London.  I had a 10 hour lay-over before heading to Delhi.  I've never been to the UK (or out of the country much for that matter) but I knew I wasn't going to spend the 10 hours at Heathrow Airport.  So I didn't.  I rushed out of there fast and hopped on the Tube.  Exited at Kings Cross Station and headed to Vx aka the Secret Society of Vegans.  The only place I knew I wanted to visit.  All I had was an exit and an address.  It didn't take long to find.  I lounged at the Vx Shop, wandered around SoHo and basically just took in a beautiful London evening.  Then it was back to Heathrow to catch my flight to Delhi.

And so I arrived at Gandhi Airport just after 10am on 10-10-10.  I was greeted by Zac and Singhji of VegVoyages and my incredible, unforgettable, life-changing adventure through India began.  It's too big of a trip to completely detail or do justice here.  (2 whole weeks!)  Instead, check out the itinerary.  It was action packed everyday!

It seemed like every moment I was in awe thinking, how did I get here?  The entire trip was as if I was in constant prayer... in gratitude.  My senses and my heart were like enormous sponges.  Taking it all in and growing bigger and bigger to a level I never thought possible.  I fell in love over and over with the scenery, the culture, the people, the sights, the animals and the FOOD!  

There is nothing like India.  I was told by the more seasoned travelers that you can travel anywhere but India will change your life.  I didn't quite grasp the full effect of that until I came home.  Besides awful jet lag, coming home was equal parts happy to be home and heavy sadness to leave.  My heart feels like it is still there and I need to go back and get it.  Much like being homesick. 

Then there are my travel mates who are some the greatest friends I will ever know.  Every one of them, beautiful.  Of course, the friends we met along the way were equally amazing.  Then there were the sights!  My breath was taken away at every turn.  Every place topped the last.  Same goes for the food, every meal was better than the last.

Oh and the opportunity to give was every turn.  I had taken lots of snacks from home to travel with.  I ended up giving most of them to hungry kids in the street.  We also gave some of our time at 2 elementary schools, a woman's college and 2 animal hospital/sanctuaries.  One of my favorite days was volunteering was at Animal Aid in Udaipur.  Much like my beloved Animal Acres here.  I gave love to paralyzed dogs, walked amputee dogs, brushed crippled cows, donkeys with broken limbs and played with orphaned calves.  A truly rewarding day spreading love.

There was also the yoga, the grand palaces, little villages, the Gandhi museum, ancient temples and a charming mausoleum called the Taj Mahal.  I've never seen anything like what I saw in India.  From the gorgeous palaces to the poverty stricken tiny villages, to me, they were all beautiful I still wish I was there.  In my dreams, I am still there.  Still in the country that has captured my heart. 

I wish I could go into ALL the details of the trip, like the most epic traffic jam ever, hanging out with royalty in Kishangarh, Badrajun and Udaipur, taking the Indiana Jones-style jeeps out to the sand dunes to watch the sunset, having lunch with the Bishnois, attending ceremonies in ancient temples...  You see what I mean, and most of that happened in one day!

Going on this trip has given me so much clarity about... EVERYTHING.  In the 3 weeks since I've been home, now that the dust has settled, I have even more perspective on my life and what I want from it.  One year ago, I never would've thought that this trip could have happened.  But look at the transformation in my life!  From just starting the simple challenge of giving something every day and extending compassion to others...  From simply being love on a daily basis.  To where I am now.


"Every moment of your life is infinitely creative and the universe is endlessly bountiful. Just put forth a clear enough request, and everything your heart desires must come to you."

~Mahatma Gandhi


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

On the Eve of a New Year

No, not the New Year.  MY new year, my Birthday.  And my life is completely different from what it was like exactly one year ago.  I had just given my mom a really cool trip down to visit me and tickets to the Ellen show.  That's when I first started having the idea of giving something every day.  I started it off just a few days after my birthday at the 1st of December 2009.

It's funny to me now how that first month I planned so much of it.  There's a coat drive going on here, a food drive here, volunteering on this day, etc.,  Even the first few months of this year I still planned so much of it.  I also kept meticulous track of it in a journal.  Such detailed notes!  

In the last couple of months, I've let go of planning and keeping track.  I don't need to.  The Universe does it for me.  It automatically plans what will be given every day.  I don't even think about it, but if I do, the answer is there.  Exactly the perfect thing is given on the perfect day.  Every day.

I've learned a lot about myself and have grown in the best possible way.  In an amazing way!  I have gotten to go places I would have never thought (at this time last year) that I would ever go.  The things I have experienced, the friends I have met, the sights I have seen...  It's clear that some of the greatest friends I have met been through volunteer work!  There is no better way to meet like-minded individuals.

The transformation of the last 11 months is absolutely incredible.  I am a whole new person.  I'm so different it's actually kind of crazy.  Most importantly in the past couple of days my life's purpose has become crystal clear.  And it has EVERYTHING to do with giving.  My life is forever changed.

Happy Birthday to me.



Saturday, July 31, 2010

Christmas in July

I've lost track of what I've given these last few weeks.  Everyday was like Christmas and I was Santa Claus.  It was a whirlwind and I had the time of my life.  Giving love, presents, food, time, acts of kindness, rides, books, gifts of all kinds to my family, friends, students, strangers, foundations and more.  

And I got love, kindness and even some gifts myself.  I wish I could remember even a small fraction of what I gave, but I do remember everything that I received.  My favorite moment was getting a thank you yesterday from the parent of one of my assistants.  She told me that I was teaching the kids much more than just dance and that she appreciated everything that I've done for her daughter.  It was so touching I didn't even know what to say.

It's not just about fun surprises for friends, donating money and volunteering time, but about putting love and kindness first.  Giving presents is totally fun but knowing I've made a difference is what gives me the most happiness.  
"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.  If you want to be happy, practice compassion."                                         --The Dalai Lama


Monday, June 14, 2010

Time, time, time...

I've spent the last month and half donating time all over the place!  (No time to blog!)

Spent it at:

*Animal Acres 

*WorldFest with Sea Shepherd (most fun EVER!)


*Choreographing for one of my student's Sweet 16 Party

*Assistant stage managing for my friend's Dance Studio Show


*Cleaning up the local park 

*Made food for the Sea Shepherd Whale Wars Watching Party and took friends


*Spent time with the AMAZING 79 year-old Doris 

*Tended to a friend's herb garden while she's away (inspired me to plant my own, oregano, cilantro, basil, parsley and mint)

*Made (vegan, gluten free, chocolate, coconut) brownies for one of my classes

*Even spent the day doing my civic duty at Jury Duty (don't think it technically counts, haha!)

I've been a very active activist!  I've also signed petitions galore, given donations to the Salvation Army, gave a friend a day of work, bought food for people in need, planted some trees and donated money to a few places

One of my favorite things though, was making jewelry for my graduating seniors and teaching assistants.  It took up A LOT of time, but the outcomes were SO worth it!  And even though I was tempted (with each one) to keep what I'd made, I happily gave out my creations.  Here are some of my favorites:


Much of my time the last 2 weeks went to making all of these but I really LOVE it! 

I have donated time and so I've received time in return.  I've had the last 2 days to just relax and have fun.  Though more volunteering is coming up this coming weekend for Surfrider's Project Save Our Surf!  Beach clean up, 24-hour Surf-A-Thon and spreading awareness.

 What's not to love? 


"Anything that is of value in life only multiplies when it is given."
                                                                     --Deepak Chopra

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A Daring Rescue

Okay, not quite so daring, but I did rescue a little white fancy rat from impending doom.

As I approached the park with my dog last week, I noticed something little and fluffy in the grass.  That's a rare sight as there are no fluffy things in our park.  Not with all the predatory birds (like hawks) that live there.  I walked up to it and saw that is was a little rat, seemingly healthy and clean but scared to death.  I can't imagine how it got there, except maybe it's owner no longer felt like having a pet rat and thought the park would be a good place to set it free.  Not smart.

So I took my dog back home, dumped my recycling box and grabbed a towel.  I ran back downstairs to the park (it's across the street) and my new little friend was being stalked by big black crows!  He wasn't moving, he just made himself into a ball.  I shooed the crows away, though they were rather reluctant to leave.  I quickly threw the towel over the fluffy one, wrapped him up and took him home.  All the while reassuring him that he was safe and he was loved.


I kept thinking of the quote, "When you see something that needs to be done and you think, 'Someone should really do something about that.'  Remember that YOU are someone."

I know it's a risky move to take home a stray rat, but I wasn't going to leave him out there to face danger alone.  I put him in the big box, got him some water and in the few minutes I had before needing to leave for work, researched what to feed him.  Dog food, veggies and fruit.  Check, check and check.  I hated to leave him for the day, but I had to go to work.

When I came home, he still looked scared but the worst for him was over.  I didn't know what to do with him but my heart said, keep him.  I have the space and I have the love.  So I did tons of research, called friends who have had rats as pets before and most importantly, made him an appointment to go to the vet.

He's a healthy little guy I have named Charlie.  His favorite snacks are peanuts still in the shell and my dog's (vegan) dog food.  He likes building hills in his cage out of the bedding.  And he falls asleep when I (very badly) sing him improvised lullabies.  

Charlie has become my poster child for kindness and compassion.  If a little rat can be saved from a terrible situation, then anyone can.

But there's another message too.  That life can change in an instant.  You could be in the worst possible scenario with not a single shred of hope or salvation anywhere in sight.  Then in a flash, life can scoop you up, reassure you that you are safe and give you a life better than you could have ever imagined.  (Charlie is quite the spoiled rat.)

If it can happen for Charlie, it can happen for anyone.


~B  (and Charlie.)

Sunday, May 2, 2010


This weekend + me= Transformation.

It all started Friday night with a special LA screening of the Cafe Gratitude documentary, May I Be Frank.  The movie follows Frank Ferrante through 42 Days of Transformation lead by three young men, Cary, Ryland and Conor of Cafe Gratitude.  During the process, he only ate raw vegan food, practiced gratitude, visited holistic practitioners and got a weekly colonic.  Frank's transformation is miraculous.  He has become a radiant and beautiful person from the inside out.  Frank and the filmmakers were there after the screening to discuss how it all happened.  It was a truly inspirational night filled some of my favorite faces and set the tone for the weekend to come.

Saturday Animal Acres held their Compassionate Cooking Event which I was a volunteer for.  There were food demonstrations all day by vegan chefs like, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, Kim Garr who runs C'est La Vegan Bakeshop, raw food chef and owner of Leaf Organics, Rod Rotondi and more.  I was in charge of the goats for the day, who I was more than happy to be with since they are good friends of mine.  I did get to listen in on Colleen's discussion on love, compassion and veganism.  It was a talk that could have easily been given at a Cafe Gratitude workshop.  Everything she said resounded so much with what I believe in.  It was funny, honest and moving.

Later, Kim Garr made a rhubarb cake for her demonstration that hands down was the best cake (vegan or non) I have ever had.  In addition to the the amazing (free!) food I got to sample, I got to spend some time with my animal friends.  They are the real reason why we all gather there.  I remember when I first started going there, I had never been around farm animals and used to only carefully pet them.  Now I literally throw my entire weight onto them to give them hugs and kisses.  They love it.

Animal Acres is a place thick with love.  It is palpable.  You can feel it and breathe it when you're there.  Love is radiating from every corner and from all the beings there, human and animal.  It was an exhausting day, but as always, well worth the effort.

Today, Sunday, my best friend and I signed up to join the volunteer team for the brand new CA office of Sea Shepherd.  We arrived at their new office in Venice to a lite vegan (yes!)  breakfast welcomed by the lovely Grace who coordinated the whole event.  We watched a great video on the history of Sea Shepherd and it's Captain, Paul Watson.  Then Kurt Lieber gave us a run-down of what our duties as volunteers would be and the upcoming events.  We also got to meet Luke Tipple who is a marine biologist and runs the organization, Shark Free Marina.  He told us what his organization does and how easy it is to get involved.  After talking with everyone, we were beyond excited about all the wonderful work and fun we're going to have being involved with BOTH organizations.  From there is was off to whale watch.  Which was fun until the motion sickness set in and we missed the whales.  Blue whales even, the largest animal to ever live on the planet.  Oops.  Good thing our work with Sea Shepherd will all take place on land.

When I finally got home today, exhausted, I took my dog to the park.  While running around in the grass, around trees and down hills I was overcome with gratitude.  And not in a simple way where I was grateful for my recent experiences but on a much grander scale.  I was thankful for all of experience and existence itself.  For my existence, the Universe and everything that is beyond it.  It washed over me and after I came back inside, that feeling stayed with me.  Even though I am thankful for the little things, I am also grateful for those things that are bigger than me.  Those that are beyond what we can see with our senses, those things that we can only feel.

And so, I've emerged from this weekend a new, upgraded version of myself.  I keep being guided to amazing places, people and experiences that I'm convinced are molding me into the person I am meant to be.  Just like Frank in the movie.  He began transforming into his truest self.  The day he walked into the cafe, Ryland asked him, "What is one thing you want to do before you die?"  Frank replies, "I want to fall in love one more time, but no one will love me looking the way I do."  After the screening during the Q & A, Frank addressed this question, simply saying that the person he fell in love with, was himself. 

Cafe Gratitude will be opening up their 1st LA restaurant at the end of this year (yes!) and held their 1st Kindred Spirits Workshop in the area this past weekend.  The workshop explores "accessing the most authentic self: unconditional love."  As much as I wanted to attend this workshop, I feel like I experienced my own version of it this weekend.  Surrounded by kindred spirits, practicing and being unconditional love. 



Thursday, April 29, 2010

Random Acts of Kindness

"Real generosity is doing something nice for someone who will never find out."  ~Frank A. Clark
Now that giving everyday has become an automatic part of my day, I wanted to detach myself from the outcome of the gift and give to people I don't know.   So this month I tried my best to give out into the world.  The great Random Acts of Kindness Foundation helped me out and can help you if you need inspiration on where to start.  

I was able to reach far into the world this month and give with the help of some other wonderful organizations:

*World Malaria Day was just a few days ago on April 25th and through Population Services International (PSI), I was able to give a weeks worth of mosquito nets to pregnant women and children (who are the most as risk).
*Through PSI I was also able to give, a weeks worth of Pregnancy & AIDS prevention, life saving oral rehydration salts and two days of safe drinking water for a child.
*April 22nd was Earth Day and though I celebrate our planet and conserve on a daily basis, I thought it would be a great day to plant a tree or two.  But, plant a tree where it will really count.  Through Trees for the Future I planted two trees somewhere where it is very much needed, such as Ethiopia, Haiti, Nicaragua or the Phillipines.
*Oxfam International's goal is to overcome poverty and injustice.  Through them I got to give two special gifts.  By simply giving a quarter-pound of multipurpose soap I supplied a deserving community with life saving soap.  I also gave a child in a poor community a nutritious meal at school.
*Meals on Wheels is on their "Meals for Moms" campaign for Mother's Day.  Just $7 will provide a warm meal for a mom and at the Care2 site you can send well wishes to these mothers and grandmothers who because of health problems and lack of transportation will spend this special day alone.  You can go right now and make sure that a sweet message will be delivered to them along with a great meal.

Today being National Pay It Forward Day, it seemed like an appropriate gift to give.

I gave lots of sweet gifts to friends (hula hoops, jewelry, books) as well as my favorite organizations (Humane Society Emergency Fund, Greenpeace, Animal Acres Emergency Rescue), but I kept in mind my goal for the month. 

I realized that it could be as simple as putting money into a tip jar on the counter when no one is looking.

Give without expectations!