Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Outings in Orange
One of my favorite spots in So Cal is old town Orange. Complete with a roundabout, antiques, Paris in a Cup Tea Salon (http://www.parisinacupteasalon.com) and The Perfect Circle Cupcakery, it doesn't get any sweeter.
One of my favorite events to attend is Launch Your Creativity, held at Paris in a Cup, featuring women speakers who are there to motivate each other creatively and professionally. At this event Jenny Doh, Sharon Hughes and Jenelle Van de Mortel were some of the speakers.
What I took away from the event was this (thanks to Jenelle): women need to empower women; in short, Women Helping One Another (W.H.O.A.).
Unfortunately, we live in a society where women are still not paid as much as their male counterparts, and the job market as a whole is crumbling. How do we expect anything to get better if we aren't lending a helping hand? One of the reasons I really like what I do for a living is for the sheer fact that I have the power to help people. A woman who sews for a hobby can be published in our magazines, and instantly her day is made. A struggling artist who cannot make ends meet can see an increase in sales after appearing in one of our magazines. And, if nothing else, someone can receive a bit of extra money simply by sharing their technique in our pages. What I offer people is a sense of community, a sense of belonging, a confidence boost, and at times, monetary compensation. Before I send out acceptance letters for a magazine it hits me that someone's day is about to be made. Someone may have been praying for this letter to be dropped in their inbox for months. And to think, for me, it's just another item on my to do list.
But I would never be in a position to make people's days or have artwork to accept if somewhere along the line, a woman or two hadn't helped me out. If Jenny Doh had never taken a chance on me I dont know if I'd be where I am today. If I didn't have amazing colleagues-turned-friends who encouraged and supported me, or sat next to me at tea (thank you, Rita, Lisa, and Paulette - who sat next to me in spirit) I dont think I would have peace of mind. If I didn't have close friends who were willing to walk around downtown Orange antiquing with me in the sweltering heat and listening to me (thanks, Alexis!), I know I myself would not be a good friend. And if I didn't help and empower other women I meet, what kind of editor (or more importantly, what kind of human being) would I be?
I believe in the greater good, karma, prayer, hard work, self-sufficiency, the relationships I have maintained, paying it forward, and most of all - I believe in myself. True, you can't help everyone. But by helping one person today, they can help themselves tomorrow, or perhaps someone else. The best gift we can give to one another is ourselves; our ears for listening, our hands to hold, our shoulders to be cried on, our heads to nod, and our eyes to lock. How grateful I am to know such helpful and inspiring women. They in turn are the reason I want to help others.
Special thank you to the staff at Paris in a Cup for helping to make my experience memorable and delightful. Thank you to Rita for my amazing shoe calendar - you know me so well! Thank you to my good friend Alexis for understanding my love of old things ... and thanks to the wonderful vendors in downtown Orange who sold me this fabulous necklace for $3 ... and thanks to the staff at the Perfect Circle for making the most divine pumpkin cupcake ever! Oh, and thank you to my boyfriend's family who luckily intervened and ate the remaining cupcakes so I did not have to (because I would have).
But in all seriousness, if you want to help and empower yourself, you won't want to miss the next Launch Your Creativity event in April. In the meantime, think about this: who will you be helping today?