Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Sing it Massukos!

We moved the TV out of the living room, and its been wonderful. It is now in our room, we still watch it, but later at night, and not so often. Last night, we tuned it to our trusty PBS channel, they do not disappoint. I didn't grow up watching PBS, damn cable channels, it is only now that I see how valuable it is.

Last night on Frontline there was a story about a man named Santos, from Mozambique. Santos, who with his band Massukos, sings songs about sanitation. Santos' motivation comes from the fact that he grew up in Niassa, one of the poorest places on earth, and contracted polio from drinking contaminated water. He has made it his life's goal to educate people about hygiene, and the proper use of latrines. Here is some of what he sings, in his local language of course:

Let’s wash our hands
Let’s wash our hands
For the children to stay healthy
For the uncles to stay healthy
For the mothers to stay healthy
We build latrines.

He is also helping to build these amazing latrines; they are ingenious really. They are ecological latrines that are brick-lined pits which prevent water contamination. When they are done using the latrine, they go get some ash from the fire and pour a few handfuls into the latrine, then cover it. The ash removes the smell from the air (and gets rid of disease carrying flies), and then reminds them to wash their hands.

But theres more! The ash also reacts with the waste and, after 6 months or so, creates a natural fertilizer they can use on their crops. Amazing! I have a new found appreciation for ingenious ideas like this since our trip to Peru. These things make sense. They are sustainable. The people have a safe clean latrine, it helps them to stay healthy, keeps things clean, AND they get fertilizer for their crops! Who knew a toilet could be so flippin' cool.

This story made me want to run to Mozambique. It's beautiful, the people are beautiful. They speak Portuguese, so similar to Spanish. Who knows, maybe we will end up there someday. After you watch this video, you'll understand:

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

:: May Exchange :: Daily Ritual

:: My Daily Ritual :: I do a lot of experimenting with photos, almost daily. This is me sitting on my porch, experimenting with finding beauty in blur.

Here is an album with all the wonderful submissions for the May Exchange:

Man, my friends are the best. I really had a lot of fun doing this. So much so, that I am going to try again for JUNE. If anyone is interested, let me know by June 4th if you would like to be a part of the :: June Exchange ::

The theme will be black and white. As simple as that. And it is open to ANYONE.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Etsy:: Mae Photography

I did it, I opened up an Etsy Store. I already have 4 prints / postcards up and available, I plan on adding more soon. Click below to visit. This is new to me, so as I learn I am sure things will smooth out and get better, but yikes, here is my start:

Etsy: Your place to buy & sell all things handmade

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Don't be afraid

They are really good. These brownies have no refined sugar (sweetened with agave) and no flour (instead, a secret ingredient). I was a little apprehensive, but I was incredibly surprised at how good they are. So much so, that I had to recommenced them. Here is the recipe from - one of my favorite recipe blogs. Ok, I will tell you. The main ingredient is black beans. There, don't be afraid, try them. They are soft and fudgey, melt in your mouth good.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

A Couple Things

My friend Jacquie did it! She just launched her etsy store Chalie Jo, she makes some great cards - check her out.

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Last night we went to Mr. T's Bowl to see our friends No Little Kindness play - they were great as always. And another band, a friend of a friend, was also playing that night, Bodies of Water, they're amazing! Lo and behold, youtube has everything - here is them playing back in February - it's worth the watch.

Monday, May 05, 2008



What a wonderful 27. If the welcome into twenty-seven is indicative of how this year will be, then I whole-heartedly look forward to this year.

I am so extremely thankful for the love I feel. My husband did an amazing job at making me feel special on my birthday. He got up early, made me breakfast, picked me flowers, took me to get my present, wrote me a card, he is wonderful.

My co-workers took me out to lunch at Wholefoods, and if you know me, you know that is my Disneyland. Then that night we went to the Largo for the last Watkins Family hour before they move to another building. FIONA APPLE made an appearance, and I must say, I love her. She is an energetic, lovable, interesting person. You can tell she is real and has a lot of soul. She was really grooving to a couple of the songs, she looked free and happy, not worrying about what she looked like. I want that freedom.

I got to spend time with family on Friday evening, my grandma made dinner, we hung out. Afterwards, I went over to Jeff & Melissa's - smoked hookah, drank wine, ate cheese and had great conversations with great friends.

Saturday my cousin graduated from APU with her masters, congrats Michelle. We celebrated, hung out with family.

Sunday some friends piled into our little house like good sports. They brought the most amazing food. And the gifts, I wasn't expecting that, but I received the most special gifts. It is as if they read my mind and soul. I am so extremely thankful, and amazed at how well people know me and what I like! I am completely blown away and grateful. We all need moments like this, don't we? The ones where we feel overwhelming loved and we overflow with appreciation for our friends and family. This residual feeling will get me through future hard times. I will think about this time and be grounded in my community, family and love.

Thank you friends.

This is at the Largo, Fiona Apple, Nickel Creek, Jon Brion and Benmont Tench. This song is magical. Please watch.