0 comments on “Internet Safety Month: June 28th Discussion with @TechSavvyMama Leticia Barr & “America’s Most Wanted” John Walsh”

Internet Safety Month: June 28th Discussion with @TechSavvyMama Leticia Barr & “America’s Most Wanted” John Walsh

Hi Everyone!

Did you know National Internet Safety Month is observed in June?

This year the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA), a non-profit public-private partnership focused on cybersecurity awareness and education for all digital citizens, launched a “STOP. THINK. CONNECT.” campaign to encourage Internet users to slow down, be mindful, and think about how they interact and communicate with others online. NCSA’s campaign also encourages adults to teach a young person about better online safety so that they use good judgment and behavior in their digital life.

When I first learned about NCSA’s “STOP. THINK. CONNECT.” campaign, I thought about the digital footprint of my fabulous and creative niece who is a digital native, a recent high school graduate, and a soon-to-be college “fresh-woman.” I wondered what she knew about being safe online and protecting her digital footprint. So I called and chatted with her about the importance of being safe online, making smart choices on what she posts online, and promoting a positive self-image in her digital life. I also told her that I would continue to check in with her throughout her college experience to make sure she is managing her digital activities in a responsible manner.

America’s Most Wanted chatting with women bloggers at Internet Safety Discussion
Cox Communications PR professional Stephanie Davis and me at Internet Safety Discussion

After my conversation with my niece, I decided to attend Cox Communications’ Internet Safety Discussion featuring America’s Most Wanted John Walsh and Leticia Barr, a family internet safety and security expert, social media consultant, and founder of TechSavvyMama.com (one of my favorite digital sisters — she is the green dress in the photos contained above) on June 28 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. During the discussion, I learned several tips I plan to pass on to several friends with children (some are my nieces and nephews).

•95% of tweens use mobile devices. Only 20% parents enforce controls (we gotta do better).
•Parents should talk about Internet safety with their children as early as possible (good aunts should reinforce these teachings!)
•Caretakers (grandparents, aunts, uncles, babysitters etc) should know about and enforce the parents’ Internet safety rules when they are taking care of the children.
•The United States does not have a national standard for teaching online safety in schools (we need to advocate for one).
•Children are not immune from identity theft (we have to do a lot of educating with children on these matters).
•Parent should model what they want for their children when it comes to technology (so should extended family members who spend time with the children).
•Common Sense Media rates apps for age appropriateness (great tool for parents to use in helping children use technology responsibly): www.commonsensemedia.org.
To learn more about the discussion, go to Twitter and search for the hashtag #coxtakecharge.

Great moments at the Internet Safety Discussion
Kelly Heisler of Everywhere, Lifetime Moms National Accounts Manager, and Danica Kombol of Everywhere at Internet Safety Discussion

After the discussion, I attended a blogger reception and after-party sponsored by the Everywhere, a social media marketing firm based in Atlanta (one of my favorite firms to work with). Both events gave me an opportunity to:

•Congratulate Leticia @techsavvymama! She rocked the discussion and looked stunning in her Land’s End green dress and sandals!
•Reconnect with the Everywhere team Danica Kombol @danicakombol and Kelly Heisler @kellyheaisleratl.
•Take photos with America’s Most Wanted John Walsh @johnwalshamw.
•Chat with Stephanie Davis of Cox Communications @Cox_Comm.
•Meet and learn about digital sister bloggers including @Stimey, @Delora, Kellie Geres @dcnanny, Andrea Khoury @novahousewives, and Micaela @supernovamommy1 (and many more fabulous women!).
•Hang out with some of my favorite “Blogalicious” digital sisters such as Xina Eiland @xeiland, Thien Kim @thienkim, and Eva @socamomdc.

All in all I had a wonderful time learning, sharing, and connecting with new and old digital friends!

PS: How do you stay safe online? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

0 comments on “Time for a Digital Diet After Everywhere’s Digitini Event & Digital Sisterhood Network Activities”

Time for a Digital Diet After Everywhere’s Digitini Event & Digital Sisterhood Network Activities

Happy Thursday!

This morning I had a wake up call while I was biking my four miles in the gym. I realized that the past two weeks have been filled with lots of social media moments.  Some of my favorite moments happened during the Digitini Cocktails and Cupcakes event hosted by Everywhere (my favorite social media marketing firm!) on May 18 in Atlanta (huge moment was receiving the Atlanta #Digitalsisterhood Key to the City that Danica Kombol made!).  See the photos below.
Photo Credit: Terrance Gains and Everywhere Team (they created the invitation)
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Everywhere team with Ananda
Photo Credit: Everywhere’s photo of OMG Cup and Cakes & Ciroc’s Digitini Cocktail
Digitini Thank You Note
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Photo Credit: Everywhere
Atlanta Digital Community – Photo Credit – Everywhere
To read more about my social media adventures at Spelman College’s Women of Color Leadership Conference and Everywhere’s Digitini event, click here:
2) Everywhere’s Digitini Event, May 18.  My Digitini adventures and Digital Sisterhood Network activities have been juicy sweet! Now it’s time to return to my digital diet where I take time off from the social media world.  Guess what? My summer and fall months are gonna be filled with lots of digital diet moments as I wrap up the final parts of my Digital Sisterhood book. I will be online on Digital Sisterhood Wednesdays and during BlogHer in early August and Blogalicious in late September.  Are you going on a digital diet or changing your online routine this month or summer? If yes, share how.  See you next week with my end of the month blogs! Enjoy your day and long weekend!
0 comments on “Good Friday Positive Inspiration for My Writer’s Soul from Kelly Rae Roberts & Brene Brown”

Good Friday Positive Inspiration for My Writer’s Soul from Kelly Rae Roberts & Brene Brown

Happy Friday!  Happy Good Friday! Happy Early Easter!

How is your day going?  I hope it is treating you well.  Mine started with a confession and a double dose of positive inspiration for my writer’s soul.

Here’s my confession: when I write books, especially memoirs, I have an opportunity to really explore some deep parts of myself.  Sometimes the writing journey can get emotionally draining, scary, and overwhelming.  When that happens, I look for positive inspiration. Today I reminded myself to slow down, breathe, and look for some positive inspiration.  Guess what? I found two great sources.

Photo Credit: KellyRoberts.com

Artist Kelly Rae Roberts’ April 5th blog post was the first source of inspiration.  Roberts’ post about the benefits and pitfalls of an online life reminded me I need to continue taking great care of myself by setting more boundaries on my online life.  In short, it’s time for me to revisit my online boundaries, establish a new schedule for going online, and have a more consistent practice of daily and weekly UNPLUGGING (my digital sister and friend Danica Kombol calls it a digital diet).

Photo Credit: Brene Brown photo from The University of Houston

My second source of positive inspiration came from a YouTube video featuring storyteller/researcher Brene Brown’s TEDx Houston Talk on the power of vulnerability. Click here to watch the video.  What a game changer!  It’s making me dig deeper into my Digital Sisterhood book writing journey. I’m so grateful for Brown’s talk, the power of connection, and the belief and acceptance that I am enough as a spiritual being having a human experience as a woman, friend, daughter, sister, author, artist, coach, yoga teacher, innerpreneur, speaker etc. etc.

So what positive inspiration have you discovered lately?

How do you keep yourself inspired?

Any plans to unplug, set boundaries on your digital life, go on a digital diet (check out Daniel Sielberg’s The Digital Diet — great tips), or take a digital sabbatical (similar to the one Gwen Bell talks about in her book Digital Warriorship – fantastic book I read in 2011 — had a chance to participate in Bell’s BlogHer 2011 workshop — awesome experience)?

4 comments on “#BlissDom12 Conference Blog Recap Part 5 – My Heart of Haiti Moments”

#BlissDom12 Conference Blog Recap Part 5 – My Heart of Haiti Moments

Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti photos

Some of my best BlissDom Conference moments were spent supporting and celebrating the Heart of Haiti Campaign, a partnership between Fairwinds Trading, Macy’s, and the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund.  It was created to provide sustainable income to Haitian artisans impacted by the January 2010 earthquake.  Through the partnership, the artisans create artwork that is sold as the Heart of Haiti collection in Macy’s stores.  The sales from these hand-made products including quilts, metalwork, paper måché, painting and jewelry generate the sustainable income and provide trade instead of aid to the Haitian artisans.

Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti Photos

As soon as I arrived and settled into my room at the Opryland Hotel on February 23, I tweeted the Everywhere team, Danica Kombol and Britton Edwards, to let them know I was ready to put on my Heart of Haiti Blogger Ambassador hat and support their Heart of Haiti booth in the BlissDom Handmade Marketplace.  When I saw the booth, I was in complete AWE! Why?  Because these ladies know how to make a conference booth attractive and fun to visit.  And it’s not hard when you have the beautiful Heart of Haiti collection to work with.  Danica and Britton gave me a brief update on the new items in the collection and showed me photos from the #Bloggers4Haiti trip to Haiti in January.  Check out the photos below.

Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti photos
Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti photos
Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti photos
Ananda and Danica Kombol - Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti Photos
Ananda and Britton Edwards -- Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti Photos

While I was at the Heart of Haiti booth, I met and chatted with BlissDom attendees about my experiences as a Blogger Ambassador and February 2011 trip to Haiti.  Many of the attendees told me about their passion for using social media for social good and plans to support the Heart of Haiti.  Those conversations reminded me how important it is to tell people about the Haitian artisans who are using their creative gifts to make their lives and country better.  They also reminded me that I have got to get to Haiti in 2013!

Ananda and Emily FaliLv - Photo Credit: Everywhere Heart of Haiti Photos
0 comments on “Ananda’s #HeartofHaiti Post: Developing Digital Sisterhood Bonds in Haiti”

Ananda’s #HeartofHaiti Post: Developing Digital Sisterhood Bonds in Haiti

Nathalie Tancrede, Deana Jirak, Willa Shalit, Sloane Berrent, Ananda, Juliana Um & Johnica Reed

Today is Digital Sisterhood Wednesday on Twitter.  That means the Digital Sisterhood Network is in full force  —

Ananda & Pascal Faublas, Jacmel Director for Fairwinds Trading

celebrating and promoting their digital sisters by tweeting about their businesses, wisdom, creativity, blogs, Facebook pages, causes, videos, and web sites.  I created #DigitalSisterhood Wednesdays during the 2010 Blogalicious Weekend Conference and  launched the weekly Twitter celebration to  give women in social media a weekly opportunity to build and strengthen their communities. Each week women are encouraged to celebrate and promote their digital sisters by using the #FF (Friday Follow) format.  This weekly celebration gave birth to Digital Sisterhood Month and the Digital Sisterhood Network in December.  One of the lessons I learned during Digital Sisterhood Month was that Digital Sisterhood is more than a weekly or month-long celebration. It is a movement that has a life of its own.  It is living and breathing on and offline.

Heather Whaling, Sloane Berrent & Ananda

Did you know Digital Sisterhood traveled with me when I left Washington, DC and landed in Port-au-Prince, Haiti on February 25?   I had no idea she packed herself in my luggage with plans for developing digital sisterhood bonds with 11 amazing women I met through the Heart of Haiti campaign.  See the list of digital sisters below.  Click here to see more photos of the Heart of Haiti‘s Digital Sisterhood.

Heart of Haiti Digital Sisters

  • Sloane Berrent, Humanitarian, Kiva Fellow, and Founder of The Causemopolitan,
  • Laura Ciocia, Senior Digital Strategist at Everywhere,
  • Pascale Faubas, Jacmel Director, Fairwinds Trading
  • Deana Jirak, Designer and Photographer,
  • Danica Kombol, Managing and Founding Partner at Everywhere,
  • Johnica Reed, Travel Tastemaker, Writer, and Founder of leisureStrategy,
  • Willa Shalit, Artist, Author, Co-Founder of V-Day, CEO of Fairwinds Trading, and Founder of Touch Foundation,
  • Nathalie Tancrede, co-founder of Fondation d’Ayiti Soleil, a Haitian organization that helps educate Haitian girls and women, and the Haiti Country Director for Fairwinds Trading
  • Juliana Um, Creative Director, Fairwinds Trading
  • Heather Whaling, PR/Social Media Expert and President of Geben Communication.
Laura Ciocia, Deana Jirak, Sloane Berrent & Ananda
Johnica Reed, Ananda & Danica Kombol

I learned so much about these ladies in four days. We talked about many issues as we toured Port-au-Prince.  Stories, insights, reflections, and lessons learned danced in and out of our daily adventures.  Laughter, silent pauses, a reflection and prayer circle, yoga before sunrise, Reiki healing touch sessions, blogging and tweeting in the hotel restaurant, filming video interviews, taking photos everyplace we stopped, late night girl weekend conversations, dancing and eating plantains at Jacmel’s Carnival, and chit chatting at the cafe in Toussaint Louverture International Airport are just a few of the ways Digital Sisterhood created bonds between me and these women.

It’s hard for me to fully describe the Digital Sisterhood bond that happened in Haiti.   I guess I am still basking in the beauty and blessing of connecting with 11 dynamic women.   So I will leave you with two of my favorite Kreyol words and video interviews of Willa Shalit and Heather Whaling.  The Heart of Haiti Digital Sisterhood is “belle bagay” (a Kreyol word that means fabulous)!

2 comments on “Happy New Year! My Heart Belongs to Haiti This Month!”

Happy New Year! My Heart Belongs to Haiti This Month!

Happy New Year All!

It’s been a few weeks since I last posted.  Why? Digital Sisterhood Month!  31 days of celebrating women online and the connections they make, conversations they have, communities they build, causes they support, collaborative partnerships they establish, and commerce they engage in with women they meet online and offline. Visit the Digital Sisterhood Network web site to learn more.

This month my heart belongs to Haiti because I want to honor the resiliency of the Haitian people who experienced a devastating earthquake on January 12, 2010.  Last year I taught an online yoga class for Yoga Day USA that was dedicated to the people of Haiti. At the beginning of the class, I asked viewers to donate money to Doctors Without Borders to support their work in Haiti. Click here to watch the video.

This year I am serving as an ambassador for the Heart of Haiti campaign, a Macy’s partnership that was created to provide sustainable income to Haitian artisans impacted by the January earthquake.  Read my November 29th post to learn more. Also, listen to the following December episodes of Digital Sisterhood Radio that mention my work with the Heart of Haiti campaign:

  • December 20th show featuring ‘Digital Native’ Lauren Thomas, founder of Digital Aftershock: I discussed how I met Lauren Thomas, former Digital Coordinator of Everywhere, at the Heart of Haiti booth during Blogalicious 2010 and had a powerful conversation that convinced me to sign up for the campaign.  I also shared how I interviewed Lauren about the Heart of Haiti campaign with my cell phone for my Cinchcast audio blog at Blogalicious.
Water Carriers by Dr. Lois Mailou Jones, Haiti 1985 - acrylic, 25 ¼ x 19 ¾ in.

 

I almost forgot to mention that I organized a Digital Sisterhood Month field trip for DC area  women in social media to visit the National Museum of Women in the Arts on December 3 to see the “Lois Mailou Jones: A Life in Vibrant Color” exhibit.  During her lifetime, Dr. Jones (born November 3, 1905 – died June 9, 1998), a Howard University art professor (one of my favorite artists), created a body of artwork that was inspired by Haiti and her marriage to Haitian artist Louis Vergniaud Pierre-Noel.  One of my greatest treats was showing the women who attended the museum field trip some of my favorite Haitian-inspired paintings created by Dr. Jones.  Check out the amazing “Water Carriers” painting on the left side of the blog post.

What do you think?

I LOVE IT and HAITI!

Drop by my blog this week and next week for more posts about my passion for Haiti and work with the Heart of Haiti campaign!

Enjoy your day and week!

6 comments on “Opening Your Heart to Haiti: I am a Heart of Haiti Ambassador”

Opening Your Heart to Haiti: I am a Heart of Haiti Ambassador

Happy Sunday!

Guess what?  I am a Heart of Haiti Ambassador!  You may be wondering what is the Heart of Haiti?  The Heart of Haiti campaign is a Macy’s partnership that was created to provide sustainable income to Haitian artisans impacted by the January earthquake.  Through the partnership, the artisans create artwork that is sold as the Heart of Haiti collection in Macy’s stores.  The sales from these hand-made products including quilts, metalwork, paper måché, painting and jewelry generate the sustainable income and provide trade instead of aid to the Haitian artisans.  The Clinton Foundation inspired Macy’s to create this amazing partnership.  Macy’s is selling the Heart of Haiti collection at 25 stores including the Metro Center location in Washington, DC  (for all my DC area folks) and on macys.com.   

Ananda holding Haitian artwork at Heart of Haiti booth at the Blogalicious Conference held in Miami, FL in October 2010

I learned about the Heart of Haiti campaign during the Blogalicious 2010 Conference held on October 8-10, 2010, in Miami, Florida. During a speed networking session, I met Danica Kombol, a managing and founding partner at Everywhere, who introduced me to the Heart of Haiti Campaign. Click here to listen to my interview with Danica: www.cinchcast.com/anandaleeke/100144.

Later that morning, I listened to a Heart of Haiti campaign presentation featuring Willa Shalit and two Haitian artisans.  They discussed the powerful work they are doing to create artwork and support Haitian artisans as they rebuild their lives after the January earthquake.  That’s when I fell head of heels in love with their work.

After the presentation, I visited the Heart of Haiti booth in the Blogalicious Exhibitor Hall to learn how I could support the campaign. Lauren Thomas, former digital coordinator with Everywhere, gave me more information about the artwork and campaign.  My conversation with Lauren turned into an interview. Click here to listen: www.cinchcast.com/anandaleeke/100204.

A week after I returned to DC, I received emails from Lauren and the Blogalicious team about a local Heart of Haiti event at Macy’s at Metro Center featuring my favorite Haitian singer Emeline Michel. Visit www.emeline-michel.com.  I decided to attend and invite my dad so he could learn more about the campaign.  We were both impressed with the campaign and collection.  Click here to see photos of  the Heart of Haiti events I have attended: http://www.flickr.com/photos/anandaleeke/sets/72157625478398964.

My dad has become a big fan of the Heart of Haiti collection.  So has my mother! I plan on recruiting other family members, friends, and people who read my blog by serving as an ambassador!

Please support the Heart of Haiti campaign by purchasing a product from the Macy’s collection this holiday season!  See the links below for more information.

Macy’s Heart of Haiti:

http://bit.ly/heartofhaiti
Heart of Haiti on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/heartofhaiti
Heart of Haiti Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/#!/HeartofHaiti
Fair Winds Trading:  http://fairwindstrading.com
Willa Shalit on Twitter: http://twitter.com/willashalit