don’t have to bag it,” I
hurriedly explained to the lady at the other end of the checkout line
grocery store. “I brought my own totes today!” As the checker
bagger looked on with bemused
smiles, I proceeded to
open up four recycled nylon bags that were tucked inside a larger
market bag imprinted with the words “I’m a Global Bag Lady …
is my first time
eco-shopping,” I chuckled, “and I hope it works!”
the fresh, frozen and
refrigerated items found their way into my nylon bags, I put the dry
the market bag. “What’s
that all about?”
the checker asked, pointing at the canvas bag's logo. “It’s something
we’re getting started where I
work,” I replied. “I’ve
learning a lot, and it got me pretty excited!”
went on to explain how I’d
thought I was doing well by using paper bags versus plastic most of the
plus reusing what plastic bags I had. Then I discovered these reusable
bags that did more
than benefit the
canvas bags were also a
fundraiser that provided small-business loans for underprivileged and
women worldwide who needed to find a way to support themselves and
their families. “I
like that idea much more than using a tote
bag that provides free advertising for chain stores!” I exclaimed.
seemed to agree and catch my
enthusiasm, even if the concept hadn’t registered right away. I caught
bagger starting to put the
remainder of the vegetables into one of their bags. “Don’t use plastic!
We can fit more into my bag! These hold about 30 pounds each!”
She grinned as I managed to fit the final
groceries into the bags I already had (my years of constant moving have
transformed me into an excellent packer). Then,
with waves and smiles from checker,
bagger and intrigued eavesdroppers in line behind me, I exited the
that felt good!” I thought as
I maneuvered the shopping cart toward my minivan. “But this will take
getting used to. I’m
also going to need
I ever done this kind of
eco-shopping since? Hah! I
wish I could
say that I have. After
trips to the grocery store I finally
remembered to put my own bags in my car trunk, so I was able to use
this past weekend. Practice
perfect, and I’m determined to succeed eventually. This
is definitely a good habit that needs to
While I was flipping through some TV
channels recently, I came across an environmentalist businessperson who
made a comment
that really stuck with me. “Everyone
puts a piece of trash into a trashcan is an environmentalist,” he
question is … are you willing to go to
the next level?”
statement really made me
think. I’d felt
pretty good about what I
was doing so far. The
made it easy for us to recycle, with weekly free pickup bins for
bottles/cans/plastic and a box for paper and cardboard items. Until now
using paper grocery
bags for regular trash, with the confidence that paper was a renewable
and biodegradable. I
stuck clean plastic
grocery bags into the empty cardboard tubes from rolls of paper towels,
were then kept under the kitchen sink or in the car for re-use as
needed. I clipped
the plastic rings from packs of
bottles and cans, so wild animals wouldn’t get tangled up in them. At
ecologically cutting-edge uncle’s
urging, I’d even tried maintaining a compost pile a few years earlier.
I wasn’t very successful
at it, but at least
I could claim I’d made the attempt!
what about eco-shopping? Even with my positive initial experience, I
still felt pretty reluctant about doing this. Convenience has its
benefits, especially for a
working mom with a
houseful of family and friends who delightfully drop in at any
bringing my own shopping
bags going to be too much effort?
decided to weigh the pros and cons,
and then I made a short priority list:
order to turn eco-shopping into a good habit,
I need to keep reusable bags in the trunk of my car for easy access.
to the limited number of bags being used, I
have to be less impulsive and more purposeful about sticking with my
shopping list. As a
will benefit my budget.
are supposed to be caring for this planet we
all live on, not only for ourselves but for future generations.
Eco-shopping is one small
way that I can
begin to help.
time I use my “Global
shopping bags, it’s a reminder to appreciate what I have and assist
are hurting. By
purchasing these bags,
I’ve donated toward microenterprise loans and training for women who
struggling to keep a roof over their families’ heads and food in their
bellies. Each GBLP
shopping tote bag
helps the planet, helps individuals – and helps me carry my groceries.
That’s better than
plastic, paper, or regular
store advertising bags any day!
As I thought
more about ecological responsibilities and
helping others, I remembered a recent conversation with my 10-year-old
about alternative fuel sources, and my 13-year-old son’s frustration
fast-food restaurant that had no recycling bins for paper, canned or
items. These kids
were concerned. They
had been well taught that reducing,
reusing and recycling is a responsible use of resources. My desire has
to be a good
example to them when it comes to caring about the environment in my
regularly using the Global
Project shopping bags, I can show my family (and
who’s interested) how to be environmentally conscious and compassionate
generous at the same time. That
multi-tasking benefit strongly appeals to me.
deciding factor between knowing what I should
do and what I will do—what
motivates me past the
inconvenience—is this benefit I can be to others when I eco-shop. It’s
much joy can come from
helping others survive and thrive! I’m learning
more about how God’s mindset is geared toward this kind of
responsibility, alongside unselfishness and deep caring about people,
I’m truly enjoying
becoming more godly
in those areas.
recommendation is to give eco-shopping a try. If you choose to order a Global Bag Ladies
Project shopping tote in the process, you could benefit
you would by using a bag that’s advertising a local chain store. You
could also benefit
more than the
soul could benefit
from a joy of giving that you didn’t expect!
(Note: Karen Mains is on
vacation. Susan Hands is guest-writer for this edition of Soulish
Bag Ladies Project shopping bags
to be sold
bags @ an average of $20
margin each = an estimated
bags already sold = $100 toward our goal.
Goal to Go: 584
bags = $11,900 (!)
Have you considered giving GBLP
tote bags as gifts? One of
these shopping bags was recently purchased “in honor of” a person being
celebrated, who really appreciated the donation in their name and the
purpose of the GBLP
bag. Other suggestions have been to fill a GBLP
tote bag with shower gift items for an upcoming
wedding, give these bags as Christmas gifts, or purchase several as favors for a
To receive your own Global Bag Ladies Project tote bags, click on this GBLP
Purchase Order, print it off, fill it out and send it with a
check made out to Hungry
Souls/GBLP for $20-$50 to Box 30, Wheaton, IL 60187.
2008 Pilgrimage to France
is room for 10 more people to participate in the upcoming pilgrimage to
France. The deadline is August 31st and full
payment will be due at that time. We truly
hope you can come, as this will be a personal and unique opportunity to
experience France in the company of other pilgrims lead by Karen Mains
and Valerie Bell (
2008 Advent Retreat of Silence
In the next Soulish
Food you’ll be receiving more
details about the upcoming Advent Retreat of Silence for
2008. Many who previously attended this retreat have made it an
annual tradition. Join us for a wonderful
24 hour period that prepares your heart and soul for the upcoming
Here Is a GREAT
“Yes!” Opportunity — Soundtrack™ for Millennium
Last fall Melissa Timberlake
and I attended Pathway
Ministries’ unique interactive, meditative experience held in
in Chicago. This was a fabulous morning! I am strongly recommending
that all the men in my
life avail themselves
of this event designed for up to 10 participants.
Planners and designers John
Crilly and Mark Nesbit will
provide you with iPods that store pre-taped music and meditations, as
well as a
workbook to remind you of Scriptures and in which you can jot your
you take three hours to slowly visit six sites within the Park. The
cost is $95, not
or lunch, and is well worth every penny. This would make a perfect
couple experience. Spend a night in the city,
either before or
for Millennium. See sidebar for more specific information.
Microenterprise Trip Opportunity
are interested in studying the effects of microenterprise ventures in
Kenya, we are putting together a small group (16) in conjunction with
Nairobi Evangelical Graduate School of Theology to journey to Nairobi
next year, March 25 to April 6, 2009. The itinerary and the
pricing are still being negotiated. Contact Karen Mains (
or by phone
630-293-4500 and we will get back to you when this
information is finalized.
The Soulish Food e-mails are
posted bi-weekly on the Hungry Souls Web
site. Newcomers can look that over and decide if they want to
register on the Web site to receive the bi-weekly newsletter. You might
want to recommend this to friends also. They can go to www.hungrysouls.org.
deciding factor between knowing what I should
do and what I will do—what
motivates me past the
inconvenience—is this benefit I can be to others when I eco-shop. "
Billion Bootstraps: Microcredit, Barefoot Banking, and The Business
Solution for Ending Poverty
A bold manifesto by two business leaders, A
Billion Bootstraps shows why microcredit is the world's most
powerful poverty-fighting movement and an unbeatable investment for
your charitable donations.
A Billion Bootstraps unearths the
roots of the microcredit revolution, revealing how the pioneering work
of people such as Dr. Muhammad Yunus-winner of the 2006 Nobel Peace
Prize-is giving hope to billions. Philanthropist and self-made
millionaire Phil Smith and microcredit expert and consultant Eric
Thurman provide a riveting narrative that explores how these small
loans, arranged by “barefoot bankers,” enable impoverished people to
start small businesses, support their families, and improve local
economies. By paying back their loans instead of simply accepting
handouts, men and women around the world are continually giving others
the same opportunity to change their futures.
Smith and Thurman also examine why traditional charity
programs, while providing short-term relief, often perpetuate the
problems they are trying to alleviate, and how applying investment
principles to philanthropy is the key to reversing poverty permanently.
A Billion Bootstraps explains how
ordinary people can accelerate the microcredit movement by investing
charitable donations in specific programs and then leveraging those
contributions so the net cost to lift one person out of poverty is
remarkably low. You'll discover how to get more for your money by
donating with the mind-set of an investor and calculating measurable
returns-returns that will change lives and societies forever.
God Through the
Eyes of the Artist and the Artist In the Eye of God October 24 - November 10, 2008
This is a journey for men and women. We have room for 10 more pilgrims.
The land fee of $2,592 is due August 31, 2008.
Airfare is not included. Depending upon the exchange rate (the dollar
being low), we may have to add a bit more to the land price, but we
hope not to do this.
If you have any questions,
contact Karen Mains (
or Valerie Bell (
We can provide you with a flyer that has all the details and the
general itinerary or you can go to the travel Web site at www.hungry-souls.com
to print off the pages you need for full information.
What Music Is God
Playing In The World? In Your Life?
is a multifaceted one-day experience
designed to help you encounter God and to open yourself to His movement
heart and mind.
provide you a selection of purposed words & music for
use during the day of the retreat. We
will act as guides on a crafted journey to encounter the heart of God
the experiential environment of Millennium Park, with
combination of architecture, monumental sculpture and landscape design.
art, solitude, music, natural beauty, social immersion, community and
plan to join us
for this unique event.
available on the following dates. If
would like to bring a group, we can accommodate up to 10 participants
AUGUST 9, 16
SEPTEMBER 6, 20
OCTOBER 4, 11
Retreat Fee is $95 per person
(meals and transportation
register, please respond to John Crilly at
or call 630-641-4461.