So much has happened in the past two weeks- I took a little time, paused for a bit and focused my energy on some important things. After the devastating typhoon that hit the Philippines, I felt it wasn't appropriate to take photos and write about what clothes I'm currently wearing while most people don't even have a roof over their heads or food to eat. Even before this tragic natural disaster occurred, something I'd constantly ask myself is - what am I doing posting photos of myself and things that are surely luxuries to others?

I was raised to be modest, humble, kind, generous, hardworking and loving. I went to an all-girls Catholic school from preschool all the way through high school. I only now realize how much of an impact that's made in me. I'm constantly judging my actions. Is this right? Who can benefit from this? Will I be hurting anyone in the process? Etc. There is this sense of guilt I have each time I post a photo or write about something I'm coveting. Am I being materialistic? Is this considered flaunting?

I had a nice long chat with a couple of friends of mine about this. I'm thankful for them and the wisdom they had to share about this whole other world we call blogging and social media. The answers to all of those questions I have really lie within my own intentions. What people perceive is their own opinion,  what's important is that my heart and mind are set in the right place. This is a hobby of mine that I enjoy and I get to exercise my talents with it. This blog is only a small part of what I like to do - it is not a reflection of who I am. We now live within a society that also exists in our phones, computers, and other gadgets. There is a constant exchange of ideas and information - including what we eat, what we wear, and what we buy. There is nothing wrong with all that unless we let it define who we are.

I'm pretty sure that I'm not alone with these thoughts. Yes, there are so many people who are hurting or in desperate situations out there. We can pray, we can offer help, we can go out of our way to make a difference, and we can be sensitive. But that doesn't mean we should give up the things that keep us inspired and motivated. Sharing and influencing creativity is just as important as any other profession. Maybe the best way to contribute to society is to do what you do and do it the best way possible. Somewhere out there in the Philippines, a family is now receiving food and care given to them by the US government. Food and care paid for by hard earned tax dollars. Tax dollars paid perhaps by a blogger's income.

I applaud every single person that's contributed to the relief efforts in my homeland. Thank you for your selfless donations, hours of work, sacrifice and continued prayer. To my fellow bloggers that, just like me - are questioning if what we do is enough........ Set your heart in the right place, do what you do, and do it the best way possible. That's the best way we can help. You're not less of a person for not denouncing your personal belongings and flying across the world to help out. Don't beat yourself up for not setting up a charity on behalf of the victims. There are some people that seem to be helping out yet their intentions are really elsewhere. I say mind your own, stop comparing what you do, what you have, and what you give to others. Blog on and use your voice to reach more helping hands! And remember - just a little bit here and there helps a lot.

If you're thinking of ways to help - here are a few things my family, friends, and I are arranging to raise funds:

1. A friendsgiving for others - We will be filling up a few boxes of canned food to send to the Philippines during our annual thanksgiving dinner.
2. I'll be donating the November proceeds from my Poshmark closet (download the app- it's free) to the Philippine Red Cross. 
3. Donate to one of the following:
Set your heart in the right place. Do what you do. Do it the best way possible.

Lots of love! -Therese