one for one

I hope this post makes up for my utter lack of posting as of late. This time of year is extremely busy for me (and for students everywhere.) Classes are in full swing and football season is just around the corner. Both of which are very exciting but, unfortunately, keep me from blogging regularly. What this post lacks in timing it makes up for in quality. At least I think so. Get ready for a lengthy post… Apologies in advance.

TOMS, as you may or may not know, is a show company founded by Amazing Race contestant Blake Mycoskie. After traveling to Argentina and befriending shoeless children, Blake established TOMS shoes company. The idea behind it is simple: for each pair of shoes purchased, a pair is given to a child in need. A number of soil-transmitted diseases, injuries, and infections are contracted in countries such as Argentina, China, Haiti, and Sierra Leone where children walk barefoot for miles to get food and water. Putting shoes on these children’s feet keeps them healthy and strong. Shoes even allow children to attend school since they are often uniform requirements. TOMS doesn’t just stop giving after childhood either. As the children grow, TOMS will continue to give them sturdy, reliable shoes.

I bought my first pair of TOMS in 8th grade. Now they’re everywhere! Not a day goes by that I don’t see students wearing them. They’re comfortable, solid, simple, and well made. Plus, you’re basically buying 2 shoes for the price of one. Except you don’t get to keep one pair :) Today I want to share with you the TOMS Fall 2012 catalog. It inspired more than any fashion mag ever has. I kept the catalog because it was just so beautifully done. If you don’t own a pair of TOMS are are still leery about their mission, check out their website. It’s super informative and awesome. Maybe even do a little online shopping…

They just added eyewear too. So, if shoes aren’t your thing definitely check out the sunglasses. (This is my next TOMS purchase.) Almost 90% of people suffering from blindness and visual impairment  live in developing countries (source). Often people can’t afford the (usually very simple) treatment they need. Now when you buy a pair of sunglasses, someone regains their sight. How’s that for giving?

Obviously I love TOMS and I think what they do is amazing. Blake is a visionary. What I really want to share though is a “revelation” I had in church over the summer. I can’t even believe how cliché this sounds but it is actually true…which might be worse. I started thinking how I really want to make a difference in someone’s life. Even if it’s just one person, it would be worth it. I want to travel and help people and feel like my life has purpose. I love to serve others. Often I am happiest when I am helping friends, little kids, family, or strangers. There is such a sense of peace and pleasure in knowing you are making someone’s day a little more bearable – giving them so hope even.

I adore fashion and everything it concerns, but I’ll be the first to admit it’s materialistic and sometimes vapid (though I hate to admit it.) Fashion is my first love, my everything. I still want to be a fashion journalist or stylist. That dream has not died, but along the way I’d like to do something really extraordinary. I want to go on a mission trip or see a child’s face when they receive a heaping plate of hot food on a cold winter night. Then, I had my revelation: TOMS encompasses all of my loves! – fashion and serving others. I have a new dream now. It doesn’t replace my previous one but is merely an addition. I want to internship/work at TOMS. I want to go on a giving trip and put a pair of shoes on a child’s feet. I want to experience the joy a person feels when they see their surroundings for the first time. I want to feel fulfilled and satisfied.

This is by far the longest and most personal post I’ve ever written (hopefully you followed along this far.) It means a lot to me though to be able to share this in such an open way. (I would love feedback!) I’m getting all giddy just writing this. The future isn’t looking to scary after all.

I in no way take credit for these pictures. I merely scanned them to my computer. They can be found via toms.com.
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one for one

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