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How did candy change our lives?



You don’t just wake up one morning and decide to build a nonprofit. Honestly, it was an idea that has been courting my psyche for a few years.


For more reasons than I can count I am grateful to be a mother. Specifically, while contemplating the act of bringing an idea to life. It has helped me understand the depths of creation. I’m not saying that you have to carry a child to understand motherhood or creation. I’m saying that for me, conceiving, carrying, and birthing five children has opened my mind to understand what the process of “sitting with the pregnancy” means, and how essential and absolutely foundational it is to the process. This applies no matter what creation the pregnancy is for. Too often, we focus on the birth. The anticipation robs the mind of the importance of a magic already occurring.


Looking back over the past five years, I recognized that this baby of ours has been developing since an afternoon spent in Jamaica. I was laying on my stomach, notebook in front of me, pencil in my hand. I was waiting for the name to speak to me. The events of the day had lead me to an idea that was rapidly becoming a dream!


We had brought 10 pounds of candy from home with us in a backpack. A friend had previously told me that kids in Jamaica don’t get to have American candy very often as it is super expensive there. This was our first trip away from home during Christmas. We thought that bringing the candy to share would be a nice way to share the season.


We had gone to the market earlier in the day taking our backpack of goodies with us. As we moved from vendor to vendor, our kids begin handing the candy out to some of the artisans. I kid you not, within 10 minutes word spread throughout the market that we were giving away candy and we were swarmed! Not by kids though, they were all still in school! The eager recipients were all the parents and grandparents, excited to take some home for their children. Two minutes passed and the backpack was empty. We stood there and stared at each other. What had just happened?


The pivotal moment was realizing that something so simple to us, had the power to lift up all the faces around us with excitement and gratitude.


The seed had been planted. What kind of seed? We had no idea.


Back in the hotel room pencil in my hand ideas flying around my head.  We visited the experience of the afternoon in excitement. Sharing ideas on how we could travel AND touch lives. First it was simple, but it was beautiful.


What was it at first? First and foremost we were a family of seven. A family with a passion for traveling. That was the fertile ground. The seed that was planted? It was the desire to touch lives. Exchanging energy and drawing out smiles on the faces of those we connect with. Was that the magic that would ripple out and inspire? We sure hoped so!


7 of us = 7

Traveling = Wandering

It all began with our backpack = Backpacks


There are so many more stories to share. We hope to inspire you to create your own. We invite you to get out and explore, to connect with the people you meet, and create your own stories to inspire. To join us, in these waves of love, because everything is better together .


~Shai




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