Archive | January 2010

Daily Inspiration #121: Jeff Skoll – Making Movies That Make Change

Jeff Skoll, an extraordinary guy

Jeff Skoll, an extraordinary guy

This is a great video of Jeff Skoll talking about this work and life at TED. I can’t remember how many times I’ve watched it!

After his tenure as the 1st President of Ebay, he started the Skoll Foundation, which drives large-scale change by investing in, connecting, and celebrating social entrepreneurs and other innovators dedicated to solving the world’s most pressing problems. He then went “Hollywood” and created Participant Media, a film and TV production company which finances, produces, and distributes socially relevant films and documentaries.

Check out what Jeff has to say about what drives him to do what he does. My favorite quote: “I went from living in a house with five guys in Palo Alto and living off their leftovers to all of a sudden having all kinds of resources (after Ebay went public and Jeff became a multi-billionaire) and I wanted to figure out how I could take the blessing of these resources and share it with the world.”

I sincerely hope I get the chance to meet him someday – he really seems quite extraordinary!

Daily Inspiration #120: What Made You Happy Today?



Divine Caroline had a great post today that asked us to ask ourselves what daily things made us happy.

“Today it rained for what feels like the hundredth day in a row. The news involved updates about tragedy and turmoil around the world. It’s easy to feel sunk by such depressing situations, but we have a friend who manages to stay optimistic. Every day, she takes a moment to write down what made her smile, from reading a funny email to finishing a good book. A small dose of positive energy makes the gloomiest of times a little brighter. So, what good things have happened to you in the past twenty-four hours?”

Check out some of the replies

Daily Inspiration #119: What It Means To Be A Mom 2.0

This is a great video about motherhood made by Katherine Center for the Mom 2.0 Summit in Houston, TX this February:

Daily Inspiration #118: Love How Happy These Huskies Look!

Happy huskies

Happy huskies

Canada’s Christopher Delbosco, front, leads Egor Korotkov, left, of Russia, and and American Daron Rahlves in a semifinal skicross heat during World Cup freestyle skiing in Wilmington, N.Y., on Sunday, January 22, 2010.

This pic was taken from this week’s MSNBC Sports Pics

Daily Inspiration #117: Incredible Underground Residence in Switzerland

Freshome Interior Design and Architecture presents an Incredible Underground Residence in Switzerland, an all-equipped underground home. Situated in the Swiss village of Vals deep in the mountains, the house is very hard to spot, which makes for a perfect gateway. The unusual architecture plan comes from SeARCH and Christian Muller Architects, and includes all the facilities a common house has, such as a guest room, an entertainment area, but also “specialized” interiors like an underground pathway. The entrance is a wide oval opening that you are driven to by some traditional stairs made in stone. Large windows make it noticeable and draw attention to the inside décors.

Can you imagine living in something like this? It’s amazing what people can build.

A nighttime view

A nighttime view

Side view

Side views

Daytime views

Daytime views

Daily Inspiration #116: Conan O’Brien’s Last Tonight Show

I’m personally terribly sad that Conan is done with the Tonight Show. I’ve been watching him regularly for the past seven years since I was fourteen years old and am one of his biggest fans. In a way, I feel like I’ve grown up with him, and it’s been amazing to see him grow and evolve as a performer since 2002.

Farewell, Conan, but not for long! I’m looking forward to the new show you will inevitably get and will watch you no matter how late or what channel you’re on!

Daily Inspiration #115: Journalist Saves Haitian Boy

CNN reporter Anderson Cooper dropped his camera and ran into a melee of looters in Haiti to rescue a young boy who had just been hit in the head with a concrete block.

Cooper is known for jumping into the situations he’s reporting, and in this case, he saved a young boy’s life at great peril to his own.

Warning: the video contains graphic images.

Daily Inspiration #114: Martin Luther King Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr

Martin Luther King Jr

MSNBC has a great article about people reflecting upon Martin Luther King Jr’s legacy

This is my favorite story from Jane Martin in Honesdale, PA:

As a little girl in the ’60s, I remember vividly MLK on television. My mother, a feminist and a writer for the Buffalo Evening News, wrote voracious letters to the editor expressing her passion and support for this deeply courageous and obviously spiritual man. My brother, 14 years older than I and also a writer, wrote his letters to the editor to voice his support for the civil rights movement. In a small town in western New York, with not many blacks in my community except for one family of which the two boys were my age and my friends, I didn’t understand what all the fuss was about. “How could people treat each other unequally?” I thought. My mother, for her outspokenness, received hate letters in the mail from local people in our community. This scared me. I watched adults in heated passion fight for what they felt was right.

I learned from this experience how important it is to stand up for what you believe in and voice your opinions. Sometimes you have to fight for what is right because it’s not handed to you. As a white woman, I can relate to the blacks’ fight for equality. My mother, too, taught me to fight for women everywhere. She was feisty, and she was smart. And she didn’t take a back seat to any man. I am so grateful for that.

I am a strong, independent and educated woman in my 50s now, and her spirit and the spirit of MLK fill me even now with inspiration and strength whenever I need it. I pass it on to my daughters and son, who are just like me in that regard. I am pleased. By the way, my father always supported my mother’s efforts. He was not a writer, but he stood by her steadfastly. He was the steady rock. My mother was the passion.”

Daily Inspiration #113: The 2010 MSN Butterfly Award

The 2010 MSN Butterfly Awards

The 2010 MSN Butterfly Awards

MSN is currently hosting it’s 2010 MSN Butterfly Awards!

According to MSN, the award goes to the person who “best exemplifies ‘the Butterfly effect’ – making a positive contribution that has an impact beyond their actions.” Anyone can cast a vote or nominate a candidate online.

MSN will donate $10,000 to the charity of the winner’s choice. Click here to see who has been nominated and to cast your vote!

Daily Inspiration #112: Sand Painting the Tragedies of War

This video shows the winner of “Ukraine’s Got Talent”, Kseniya Simonova, 24, as she draws a series of pictures on an illuminated sand table.  Using her hands and fingers to make strokes in the sand, Kseniya depicts how ordinary people were affected by the German invasion during World War II.

The Great Patriotic War, as it is called in Ukraine, resulted in millions of deaths on the particularly ferocious Eastern front.

With her unusual talent and haunting insight, Kseniya moved the audience to tears, and won the competition’s $125,000 prize.