Friday, March 19, 2010

The Power of Half

I picked up this book at the local library after becoming intrigued by the story I saw featured on the news. The Power of Half is the story about one family's decision to stop taking and start giving back. The idea was born when Hannah, then fourteen years old, witnessed a homeless man and another man driving an expensive vehicle in her neighborhood. She said to her father, "If that man had a less nice car, then the other man could have a meal." Quite a deep thought for a fourteen year old, I thought. The whole family got on board with Hannah's aha moment and decided to put their large home up for sale agreeing to donate half the profit to charity. I'm sure I'll finish the book in a day or such a great thought philosophy to read about. For each copy of their book that is sold, $1 will be donated to Rebuilding Together, serving America's low-income homeowners and providing critical repairs at no charge to those with the greatest need. For their family project, they are investing in The Hunger Project. Visit their blog for more ideas for projects of your own. Kudos to the Salwen Family - what a great example!

After experiencing seven months of unemployment and living very frugally, we have been finally blessed with a job offer that will require yet another move. With this move, as with the last, my focus is to simplify. When you are forced to move, you realize how much 'stuff' you accumulate...and for what?!? To move it again? My goal is to sort and purge what we have and donate to those less fortunate. Once we are on our feet again, I am hoping to practice this same frugality we embraced through our months of unemployment. Live in excess no more. Give more of myself and more to charity, not necessarily money, but talent and service when and how I'm able. Lead by example as others learn by example. Develop an attitude of gratitude. Take nothing for granted. In the end, it's not how much you give; it's how much your giving changes your life and the lives of others.

What are some ways you give...time, talent, service? Remember to pay it forward.

(Image courtesy of

1 comment:

Alison said...

Thank you so much for sharing this book; I am going to have to pick it up. We really are blessed with so much. That is a great question--can we really cut back so we can share our extra with those in need? I have been trying to put some of my weekly spending money away lately to send to Haiti. I have also become more aware of so many opportunities via the internet (craft hope, haiti by hand)to share our creativity and handiwork with those who are in need. I am making a point this year of either donating supplies (buy a little extra when I am at the craft store) or making handwork (quilting, knitting) this year for these charities.