Thursday, August 27, 2009

That's a Wrap!!!

This year's group "Together in 2009" has come to an end!

We had an AMAZING book drive - we raised over 1,000 books for our community! Other mini-projects included donating to Blankets for Babies, sending sweaters to Afghanistan, donating high heels to Florence Crittenton for their prom, and Blue jeans to Florence Crittenton via Fashion Square for their gals. We took interest in our immediate surroundings - from donating to local animal shelters & also working on our bodies and health - "going green".

The success we had with the Scottsdale Relay for Life was massive, and throughout we still took time to educate ourselves internationally learning about the crisis in Darfur and plugging in Kiva and other world wide support investments, causes & organizations!

Look out next year, we are explosive! Thank you to all the people who come together to make this group so meaningful and such a success!

Also, please look at the Human Tribe Project. Our friend Jacklyn Malka is the founder!

"Human Tribe Project is a free resource allowing people to show both financial and emotional support to loved ones facing a personal or health-related crisis. In tragedy and triumph, in crisis and conquest, we are one Human tribe."

Have a great fall! See you next year!!!! xoxoxox Shauna

Thursday, May 21, 2009


We are doing 2 Book Drives in JUNE! We are also splitting our time reading to a local organizations in need of readers!

We decided to support local organizations in their drive for books!

The first drive we are doing is for children's books! PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU HAVE ANY CHILDREN'S BOOKS YOU WOULD LIKE TO DONATE! The second book drive is geared to adult books. AGAIN, PLEASE LET US KNOW IF YOU HAVE ANY ADULT BOOKS THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO DONATE!

We will be gathering from our warm networks of family, friends, faith affiliations, and our community to gather books towards the book drive. We have also decided to split up our time and read to local chapters and organizations in need of that assistance!
1) - this organization is specifically asking for new or gently used children’s books.

2) - Monetary donations preferred.

3) - they do a yearly book sale where the proceeds benefit 3 specific local charities below.

VNSA has supported the following agencies since 1987:

Arizona Friends of Foster Children Foundation is organized to promote the self esteem, and enrich the lives, of Arizona’s foster children. AFFCF funds activities, education and other opportunities that provide the children with quality experiences while they live in difficult circumstances.

Literacy Volunteers of Maricopa County teaches individuals age 16 and older to read, speak English or prepare for their GED. LVMC has family literacy programs, operates two Learning Centers in Phoenix, and offers one-to-one tutoring county-wide.

Toby House, Inc. was the first psychiatric halfway house in Arizona and continues to help adults with serious mental illness learn to live successfully in the community. To do this, Toby House operates various levels of residential and outpatient treatment programs.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Getting Green one step at a time!!!

We were looking forward to having progress on our Scottsdale school project at tonight's meeting but were unable to further the plans due to the fact that the 1st meeting with SUSD wasn't quite as productive as we would have needed it to be at this juncture. We are holding off on further details and plans til we have a more substantial foundation to build on...hopefully the next women's meeting will have a productive move in this arena. I met with Carla P. last week and I am now directed to furthering communication with Karen B.-it looks like we will be working with Community School Programs on the Sierra Vista project or one of their many others.

For last night's meeting, we discussed getting green in our daily lives and we focused on a few topics.

The first item of discussion here was GLASS. Currently glass is a commodity and it costs more to ship it than is logical. Local waste managements and recycle dumps are not able to ship glass to be recycled and reused properly so in most places it is being smashed and used as land fills. This last Saturday I attended the Get Green Market at Haus on Central Ave in downtown Phoenix and took in some information. I met a gentleman named Ray who works with a company called Refresh Glass. You can reach him via and he makes glasses and vases from re-used wines bottles. He said that the first step in making a difference is education. Reduce, Re-use, and Recycle, in that order is the beginning. He informed me that instead of recycling our old wine bottles, we can drop them off at a local Whole Foods or other venues that collect these for people in his line of work. He said that currently they gather 1,500 bottles a week locally and that is rising! We should practice purchasing reused items to fulfill our needs and wants and we should remember that Eco-friendly/getting green doesn't necessarily have to be non-profit. Ray reminded us to use our imaginations and find way to be profitable in our new ventures with re-used items!

Next topic we learned about was the same market I met Taylor Storey, a garden and landscape coach. He has a great blog, . He taught me that composting provides you with fertilizer and organic material that improves the structure of your soil. Composting is made up of 4 ingredients: 1) CARBON: TP cardboard rolls, wood chips, dried leaves, straw, shredded paper, twigs, sticks, hay, coffee filters. 2) NITROGEN: kitchen fruit and vegetable waste, egg shells, coffee grounds. (NO meat, dairy, or fish products...and no eggs themselves) Lawn clippings (from the mowed grass etc.) 3) AIR: You need to turn your compost weekly. 4) WATER: You need to water your compost, and it should feel like a squeezed damp sponge.

In our modern day lives, this is still an option that we can make work. By contacting the City of Phoenix at the Durango Dump (their contact information can be found via the waste management website) we can purchase a reusable trash tub that they put many holes in the bottom of and can be used for composting...I think for as little as $5. The smaller containers for daily use with lids for your kitchen can be found on or at Smith and Hawken stores for a little more pricey. There is one in town at Keirland Commons shopping center.

We turned in the donations for the local pet shelters to Leigh...if you have any more to donate you can bring that to the Relay for Life Event this coming Friday the 8th at Saguaro High School in Scottsdale.


Take a look at our girl Vanessa Gibb's family blog. There is a posting about the fundraiser that Kelly Meece put together for the Relay for Life at Saporros last week.

Two great links to view are posted below. Please take a peek..they are both awesome. One is a local animal sanctuary in Arizona and the other is an Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee where elephants and doggies live together.

Dr. Wilson’s Animal Sanctuary:
For pet owners who have had to give up their animals because of personal or financial troubles, Deborah Wilson’s ranch is a sanctuary. NBC’s Maria Menounos reports on how one woman is Making a Difference.

The elephant sanctuary in Tennessee below:

The next meeting will be Wednesday May 20th...IT IS SO GREAT HAVING GIRLS LIKE YOU IN MY LIFE!

This weeks goal was to find an Emergence-C packet at the grocery stores and drink it with your water...Try it out! :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Big Plans!! Starting Point!!

Big Plans!! Starting Point!!

Leigh and Jami did a fabulous job of bringing forth information regarding the pet shelters and their needs! We decided will be doing a bowl-a-rama as a group to support one of the charities this coming August or September and we are also bringing items to the next meeting on May 5th to donate to another local animal shelter!!
(If you are interested in the items needed they are attached to the email I sent out and also listed below in a link)

Summary of information for local shelters and shelter organizations:

1. Lost Our Dog Foundation ( A group of real estate professionals who formed a non-profit group a year ago to rescue pets left behind due to foreclosures or other financial hardship.
a. Ways to get involved:
i. Be the committee for the 2nd Annual Pasta, Poker and Pets Party. Goal of 300 ppl this year. Silent auction, poker, pasta buffet and drinks.
ii. Fundraisers – Food drives, fashion shows, etc. w/adoption elements
iii. Volunteer in various capacities
iv. Foster and adopt animals

2. PACC911 (www/ - brings together animal welfare organizations throughout Maricopa County in an interactive manner, providing opportunities to work together for the greater benefit of the animals. We focus on assisting the rescue groups in four distinct ways: adoption events, fundraising, education and medical assistance through the PACC911 Emergency Medical Fund.
a. Ways to help:
i. Volunteer at adoption drives and events (bowl-a-rama)
ii. Donate clothes to My Sister’s Closet and designate them to Pacc911
b. Contact:
10645 N Tatum Blvd Suite 200-516
Phoenix, AZ 85028

3. RESCUE ( – Rescues animals from euthanasia and places them in foster homes. A virtual operation founded in 1995.
a. Ways to help:
i. RESCUE needs a facility. They’re trying to raise $500,000 and have reached 20% of their goal:
ii. Volunteer professional services
iii. Donate food, litter, collars, gift cards to pet stores
iv. Fundraisers
v. Foster and adopt animals
vi. Sponsor an animal for $40 to $800 depending on the term
b. Contact:

PAC: Low-Cost Spay & Neuter Program PAC is a joint effort between Friends for Life and local veterinarians, businesses, and individuals to provide low-cost spays and neuters to low-income families (under $45,000 per year) and stray population caregivers. PAC operates through local veterinary clinics. Call (480) 497-8296 to apply for this program.
PAC is organized and managed by Friends for Life Animal Sanctuary
Download this Form to apply for the program and bring them both into the shelter during regular business hours (see contact page).
Project HART: Humane Animal Rescue and TreatmentFriends for life operates, Project HART, Humane Animal Rescue and Treatment. HART volunteers maintain feeding stations providing food and water to animals that would otherwise starve. When funding permits, we humanely trap at the feeding stations and the animals are tested for disease and spayed or neutered. The wild animals are returned to their home at the feeding station and the tame animals are provided with a foster home where they will await adoption. We need your HELP to continue our rescue efforts. You can help by becoming a HART supporter and donating $10 per month to Project HART. If you choose to be a Project HART supporter, you will know that with each passing day, yet another animal was rescued. Click here or visit our Donate page to set up a monthly donation and become a HART supporter.

Insurance agents who will make donations:

It can't be any easier than this to help homeless animals! Lilli Graf with Allstate Insurance in Gilbert believes in Friends for Life's mission so much, that she has created a way to help the homeless animals year around. By e-mailing and asking for an insurance quote, Lilli will make a donation to Friends for Life. If you know of anyone who may be shopping for insurance, or if you're interested in perhaps checking to see if you're getting the best rate, send an e-mail to Lilli and help homeless animals, too!

Jill Blackson, with American Family Insurance, is offering a free Life Insurance and Retirement Needs Review. For each review she will make a donation to Friends for Life and for each completed Life or annuity application, she will donate $20 to Friends for life. Ask her how to make Friends for Life a partial beneficiary on your life policy! Email Jill at to find out more!

Phoenix area shelters/dog adoption links:

Donation items needed – bring to next meeting and Leigh/Jami will distribute to shelters:

Collars & Leashes sale – proceeds go to support shelters
Sunday, May 3rd 9am-noon: Back by popular demand! Help support Friends for Life Animal Rescue! Our first Collar & Leashes fundraiser helped raise over $850 (and still counting) so we're doing this event again! Mark your calendars for May 3 from 9AM-Noon and tell everyone you know. Dog Collars, Leashes, Harnesses and squeaky toys! Beautiful Leather and Nylon Styles. $5 - $20 donation for each piece (HUGE savings compared to retail prices!) 505 N Ocotillo Lane , Gilbert (mapquest directions are incorrect) Call 602-469-0339 or Email for directions.


Carla Partridge from SUSD has asked for our assistance in getting the CDL playground at Sierra Vista up and running before September so that they can obtain their licence to open the program...
We as a group have decided to assist in making this happen! Stay tuned!!! Many updates, details and plans to follow!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Tonight was full of great ideas and great DIRECTION!
It was really cool how the group came together tonight!
We started off discussing a few topics to research and learn about-we decided that we wanted to look further into building a library for a country in need. We spent time researching the building of a library and as we read and sound boarded on the approach to do so, we realized that our local community could really use our support! We decided that we will continue to learn about projects and countries afar but that we will direct our energies to the community we live in for now. We are all still passionate about learning about the world we live in-but at the same time found that we are passionate about assisting the local community and making a difference there.
We have chosen two fields that need our efforts-the locals school programs and the local animal shelters. We spent time throwing around ideas and contacts that will help us to expand these avenues....We have dedicated the next meeting to following up on these topics and spinning from the material that we will return with at that time. For the next two weeks we are going to look into teh immediate needs with in teh schools and shelters...
The energy of tonight's meeting was very direct and it was so cool to see how many leaders are part of this group!
This weeks personal challenge is to make sure that you take a wheat grass shot this week...
Wheatgrass is commonly known as a grain, but is actually considered a vegetable at the time it is harvested. It is available in health food stores in the tablet form and is great for your overall health and wellness.
It is ideal for anyone who wants to feel great and stay well without much effort. It can be taken daily and is actually said to aid with anti-aging efforts.
Wheatgrass is great for people who are active in sports or other strenuous activities in day-to-day life because the Vitamin B1 converts carbohydrates into energy. It is most effective in the form of juice, which is high in chlorophyll. Chlorophyll has many benefits on the body, which include enhanced digestion and boosted recovery from illness.
It also removes toxins and has a high amount of oxygen. It contains 20 amino acids, hundreds of helpful enzymes, and nutrients. Wheatgrass is commonly recommended for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant because of the folic acid that it contains. Folic acid helps to prevent any possible birth defects that can occur during a normal pregnancy.
Wheatgrass is good for you and can be easily incorporated into your daily routine for all around great health benefits.
We donated monies towards Blankets for Babies at today's meeting...
Please mark your calenders: **Taglio Salon is holding a "We Will Cut For Food" Event at their Salon on Sunday April 26th. This is a food drive & all the proceeds will go to St. Mary's...They will be offering all their services @ an unbelievable price of $35/service for that day when you bring a canned or non perishable food. They will be holding a raffle at the Event as well...tickest go on sale April 19th.**Please call Susie Chaney for an appointment**
(Please feel free to support the cause by bringing canned or non perishable food to the next meeting if you are unable to support this cause the day of the Event)

Monday, March 23, 2009


Tonight was healthy Bealthy Blue!!!

We discussed "Our Body Our Temple".
What things add to our healthiness, balance & harmony?!

We've decided that this year's meetings will end with a personal challenge to learn and grow from within...kind of a spin of last years personal challenges, but with a twist...
Ideas and life habits that were discussed are as follows:
(but not recommendations or suggestions...just covering our booties :) We don't want you to say that you grew 4 green horns because we told you to try something!)
Now, to begin, I directly copied the following from an email that our darling beautiful Britony wrote! :) She has spent many hours on the conversations discussed at tonight's meeting so I figured I wouldn't re-invent the wheel, I would steel ! :)
"**Perfect Prenatal, New Chapter, 3/day...they say you must take one and will try to get you to take the one they offer from your OB's office. These are typically "lab-created" vitamins and minerals and your body has a tough time absorbing them and assimilating them into your system to really work at full potential. Much of it may just be passed right through your body and not be absorbed at all. The best supplements you can take are "Whole Food" supplements. They will say "Whole Food" (or sometimes "Mega Food") on the label and you can be sure that they are completely derived from plants, roots, &/or grains. Nothing "lab-created". I take this when I'm pregnant and not. Prenatal vitamins are all around great for women our age. It's just what our bodies need during these "child-rearing" years.

**Perfect Food, Garden of Life, 10/day...the best thing you can consume is raw fruits and veggies but if you're anything like most pregnant girls, it's a bit difficult to get those veggies down. They just don't seem to taste very good right now. Of course, eat as many veggies as possible, but this Super Green Formula is packed with Phytonutrients, sprouted grains and probiotics and is again a "Whole Food". This company puts out some of the best supplements out there. If you like doing less 'pills' you may want to try the green powders that are out there. There a couple really good ones. Let me know if you want that info. You can put a couple spoonfuls in your morning juice drink and it may not be too bad. (You just have to get used to the taste)

**Bone Strength (Calcium), New Chapter Organics, 6/Day...yet another "Whole> Food".

**C Food Complex (Vitamin C), New Chapter Organics, 4/day.

**Super 8 Hi-Potency Probiotic, Udo's Choice, 3/day...Probiotics are some of the best things you can put in your system to get good bacteria working for you instead of all the bad. (This is especially important to take when you're no longer pregnant and you get back to your occasional 'adult beverage'.) Sugars, alcohol, coffee, etc are really acidic and increase the amount of bad bacteria in your intestines.

**Udo's 3.6.9 Oil Blend, Udo's Choice, 14/day...I know this seems like a lot but these oils are so great for treating your system to valuable nutrients as well as lubricate your body all the way down (when you're pregnant). With my first pregnancy they told me I had to hold the baby in because my doctor had not arrived yet and he was basically sliding out (sorry for the mental pic). Plus, I think it may have helped with not getting stretch marks. Anything you put on your skin topically can not go deep enough where the stretch marks form which is in the cellular level. Best to go from the inside out. These are great to take when you're pregnant and not. **Cod Liver Oil (Lightly Lemon 1000mg), Carlson, 15/day or liquid...again, a lot. This is KEY to having a healthy and brilliant baby. (If preg.with the baby's brain forming right now there is noting better you can give it than omega's. And if you're breastfeeding.more of the same.) This brand has been proven to be one of the absolute best out there. The others have harmful levels of mercury and toxins. Plus, the lemon added is much better than the usual due to the lovely nature of frequent burping when you're pregnant. Lemon taste is much better than fish when it's belched up. ;) The Perfect Food, Oil Blend and Cod Liver Oil can all be taken in liquid form or in capsule form. With a sensitive gag reaction that I have> especially when pregnant I find it much easier to take the capsule form. Choose whatever best suits you. You can find these supplements at most of your more healthy markets (Sprouts, Sunflower, and Whole Foods). Sprouts is my favorite place. They seem to have the best prices. And lastly, some were asking about the cleanse I did. The products used are from Arise and Shine. You can get the products online or drive all the way down to East Mesa. You can find all that info on their website( If you go to their website you can click on 'About Cleansing' to get a bunch in great info and questions answered about their cleanse. If you want to read the cleansing guide, just click on 'Products', click on the photo for the 'Cleansing Kit' and after scrolling down they have the link to their 'Cleansing Guide'. You should get all the info you need to see if it's something that would be good for you and get going. It's not easy!!! But the rewards are spectacular. I really like their products. I am due at the end of June. I plan to breast feed for a few months. Once I'm done I will be doing a 28 Day Cleanse. I'll let you all know when I plan on doing it, but if any of you are interested it'd be fun to do it together! ;) You may want to start with a 7 Day Cleanse to get a taste. Just a thought. Please know that I am not a doctor! These are products that I've found that work well for me and am no way telling you you should take these products. You may want to check with your physician before taking any/all of these items I have mentioned above. (I have to cover my booty!) ;)
I really hope this even makes sense! I am not the most eloquent in my brain-dead-pregnant-state! Let me know if you have questions.
Here's to health, Britony"

Now, we mentioned other topics such as:
PROBIOTICS- Refrigerated and live cultures, powder form is better.
Gwenyth Paltrow has a good website out: it is always updated with what to eat and what to do :)
Also, Britony's friend Sarah has an amazing site and an amazing book:
Also, "toxic beauty" look at the site:

Thursday, March 12, 2009

We are very Fortunate Women!!!


We are very fortunate women... and, we are so fortunate to be women in the United States of America...

We are thinking globally and passing it on! Tonight we discussed ways that we could make small impacts on the world afar through micro donations and micro investments...Below are some of the causes and sites we discussed. They are all equally amazing and powerful!

Every year March 8th is celebrated around the world as International Women's Day...tonight we celebrated and reflected!

What is Kiva? Kiva lets you lend to a specific entrepreneur in the developing world-empowering them to lift themselves out of poverty! Look-we can really make a difference :)

2. International

Ending hunger & caring for the earth!

WWF-Wildlife Adoptions... Symbolically adopt wildlife and make a difference.
Reviving the rare and unique embroidery of Kandahar and empowering women artisans in the process. An organization out of Afghanistan that empowers women of that country.

5. From Homeless to Harvard The amazing true story of Liz Murray

We will be participating at this event and would love to have as many of our girls attending :)
Enjoy Cold Stone and help a great cause! Join Cold Stone Creamery for great ice cream and the Gin Blossoms for a free intimate performance to benefit the Bowe Special Care Nursery, a neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Scottsdale Healthcare Shea.
Thursday, April 2Kierland Commons Amphitheater in ScottsdalePerformance starts at 6 p.m.
Afterwards, a Fender® Telecaster® guitar signed by the Gin Blossoms will be live auctioned.* Cold Stone Creamery will donate 50% of the April 2 proceeds. For additional information, call Cold Stone Creamery at 480-951-8533.

7. Scottsdale Relay for Life

We discussed the opportunities and possibilities to have a more active presence locally with the American Cancer Society. Many of us are fundraising and participating in this year's Scottsdale's Relay for Life Event on May 8th at 6pm at Saguaro High School. We are building teams and having a great time putting our efforts and energy towards a great cause! Please join us next Wednesday March 18th from 6-8pm at Saguaro High School in the fight against cancer!!!
Please take a look at these will be powerful to soundboard and discuss further in two weeks!!!