Thursday, June 30, 2011


“Hope you’re feeling better” “Gosh, I hope that works out.” Hope. Hope. Hope. But what is hope?

I recently read an article “The Optimism Bias” from Time Magazine that discussed the brain’s function in memory learning and the effects of optimism. The author defines the optimism bias as “the belief that the future will be better than the past and present.” While some may grow wary or develop a more pessimistic outlook, this article argues that optimism may be hardwired into our brains to help human beings evolve. We would not show progress if humans could not be optimistic because we would never take risks. We would be stuck in the caveman era afraid of the future and never pushing forward. Evolution is aided by optimism, a possibility at imagining a better future.

While optimism may be hardwired into our brains, in my opinion hope and optimism are closely linked. Without hope, traditionally defined as believing that what we want is attainable, people would never try. It is important to keep hope alive alongside optimism, and here at The Mustard Seed, our walls are filled from top to bottom, left to right, diagonal to diagonal with hope. Hope for a green, sustainable future. Hope for fully furnished homes. Hope for you. Hope for me. Hope for us.

This hope is sustained with donations, so please remember to donate your unused mattresses and old furniture. Christina’s Corner #2: Donate! You will renew hope and receive a tax deduction. Besides, we are all biased towards optimism, right?

Referenced article available here:,8599,2074067,00.html

Friday, June 24, 2011


Change…most people hate it but what if we have no choice but to encounter change? I recently have been going through many changes in my life these last two months that I did not expect to happen to me. We all have been through change, most change you know when they are going to happen like leaving for college, allowing us to adjust for them before the moment when your life completely changes.

We all wonder when change occurs whether it will be for the best. I have been wondering what my summer would have been like if my dramatic change did not happen, what would I be doing in this parallel universe? It is kind of like the Butterfly Effect, a theory created by Edward Lorenz. The theory is if we change a minor detail, what the consequences would be. Like if I did not get this internship this summer, I would probably be laying out by the pool all summer long working on getting that perfect summer tan. I think most of us hate change because the fear of the unknown and whether we will be able to climb that hill that lies ahead of us. And some days, it seems like we will never make it over that hill. I have had a lot of those days this summer, but when I reach that point and starting to turn around, I see a friend extend their hand to me and help me start back up the hill again. The Mustard Seed of Central Florida is that friend for so many families and individuals in the community. When that hill seems like it just grew another 100 feet, the Mustard Seed opens its doors and offers that friendly helping hand. Here at the Mustard Seed it is our mission to help families recover from tragedies and with our help they are given a boost up that hill so hopefully they will conquer any change in their life.

So like I said the major change in my life happened two months ago, and at the time I thought nothing good could come from it. Now that time has pasted, I have become a stronger and more independent person. I am almost over that hill, and I know there will still be days where I wonder what my life would have been like but that is expected and that is when I will find that helping hand reaching out to help me. I found this quote by Maria Robinson that will hopefully help anyone going through a change nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.We all grow and learn from change, so do not try resisting the change, just go with it and do not be afraid to ask for the helping hand if you need it.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Summer Vacation

We all know what this time of year means, school is out. Days for people who have begun summer vacation consist of, waking up at 12 pm, then walking around the house in those embarrassing pajamas of yours that you would never let anyone but your pet see you in for hours while constantly opening the fridge and hoping to find that perfect snack, then once that snack is found, you migrate toward the couch and start to watch mind numbing shows for what seems like 10minutes, but then you realize as your parents get home that you actually watched TV for 4 hours that day.

What summer vacation means for parents is, getting home from a long day at work and seeing a trail of trash from your lovely child then after putting away all the items they have consumed that day, finding this loud snoozing lump on your couch. You gain the courage to awake the beast from its slumber, only to find your kid who somehow is still tired after sleeping for 12 hours that day. After forcing the beast off your couch to go and do something productive, you see your couch seems to have a permanent dent in it from where the beast had been all day.

Does this seem like a problem you face every summer? Well do not fear we can turn that couch bum into that active child of yours you used to know. Here at the Mustard Seed of Central Florida, we are always in need of volunteers, and there is no better way to ride the beast on the couch than to put them to work helping others. Your child probably needs the hours anyways, for things like bright futures or graduation. We must warn you of the side effect of having your child volunteer with us over the summer, they consist of: a clean house, a full fridge, and no longer having to listen to your child say “I am bored” after getting home from a long work day. So send your couch potato over to the Mustard Seed of Central Florida this summer, we will gladly take them off your hands.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Reduce, Reuse, RECYCLE!

As this beautiful morning sets in, I begin my day of my third week as an intern at The Mustard Seed of Central Florida! On this particular morning I can hear the furniture movement in the warehouse, the telephones ring, and the diligent computer key strokes in the office. To my right is my morning beverage in a recyclable container, which brings me to a segment I like to call Christina’s Corner. For my first segment, I’d like to talk about one of the many new things that I have learned since starting work at The Mustard Seed: recycling! Before my first day here, I knew recycling as the bin next to the trash, but since Mustard Seed has taken on such a green initiative in the office and the mattress recycling program, my eyes have been opened to the world of recycling unknown to me before.

Christina’s Corner #1: Each item that can be recycled has a “recycling code” on it, and it is a number found in the middle of the universal symbol.

For plastics, the numbers range from 1 to 9 with 1 being the most recycle friendly plastic. An example of category 1 is the soft drink bottle perhaps within your arms reach right now – as is mine. Examples of category 9 plastics include computer plastics, cell phones, and many more. Some recycling facilities, like the Mustard Seed, recycle based on these categories!

The Mustard Seed also collects unusable mattresses and breaks them down into various recyclable parts to divert the matter away from the landfills. Bring your used mattresses to us because either the mattress will go to a family or the mattress will avoid a landfill! As Lindsay previously posted, that's a win-win situation!

As I conclude my introductory blog, I hope that this has served as awareness for the recycling lingo and practices and maybe an incentive to move some of the mattresses out of the garage and down to our warehouse!