MARCH 2018

#60 The Awakened Woman.JPG

#60 The Awakened Woman

01 March 2018 // San Diego, California

“There is a deeper hunger that lies within us, waiting to be discovered. It is the innate human hunger to support one another.”

–Dr. Tererai Trent

Book No. 05 of 2017

This was a fascinating read. Dr. Trent’s story is a journey from being a child bride to a doctor to giving back to her village in Zimbabwe through education, en route to accomplishing her five written dreams. This is part memoir, part exploration into scientific and spiritual ideas that are relevant to her story, part manifesto of global feminism, and a letter to her sisterhood.

In many ways, I was a bit outside the target audience, but I enjoyed it a lot. It definitely got quite esoteric at points, but it’s also one of the most quotable books I’ve read in some time.


#61 Young and Fired Up.JPG

#61 Young and Fired Up

02 March 2018 // San Diego, California

From the high school and college students I’ve had the chance to speak to over the past few weeks to the students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas (who are pretty great on Twitter, BTW), I’m finding myself surrounded and encouraged by the hunger of young people to change the status quo.

I used to think that the energy of young people is helpful for creating change. Now I believe that the energy of young people is necessary for creating change.

I’ve included some of my thoughts about why that is in my newest blog post (link in bio, of course), along with a few simple actions to encourage young changemakers.

#62 Eleven Miles.JPG

#62 Ten Miles

03 March 2018 // San Diego, California

Model posin’ but just cause I’ve ran the furthest I’ve ran in nearly two years.

In a week, I’ll be running the San Diego Half Marathon to raise money for Plant With Purpose. Over the past year, I’ve been able to travel firsthand to meet families in Thailand and Tanzania that have overcome poverty and protected their ecosystems.

In short, I want to see that happen for even more families, and that’s what I’m running for! I would absolutely love it if you could help by donating to support me for a few miles using the link below.

#63 Hodges Hike.JPG

#63 Hodges Hike

04 March 2018 // Escondido, California

Going on a hike around the lake with the family to kick off one really active week.

Three simple recovery runs leading to the half marathon. One more week of fundraising for Plant With Purpose. Celebrating Beignet’s third birthday. Planning a film and almost all my trips the rest of this year. Family in town.

Glad we get to do all these things, but also, I am gonna have such a blast napping the rest of the day after that race!

#64 The Answer is Love.JPG

#64 The Answer is Love

05 March 2018 // San Diego, California

What are you learning lately?

What I’ve been learning is that: 

a) At any given moment, everybody’s got some kind of struggle 

b) Those struggles are usually kept hidden 

c) Those hidden struggles actually have a better ability to connect us to each other than anything else

This lines up so well with what Kevin Love recently wrote on an article I retweeted. It should be required reading for everybody. "Everyone is going through something we can’t see."

“The reality is that we probably have a lot in common with what our friends and colleagues and neighbors are dealing with. So I’m not saying everyone should share all their deepest secrets – not everything should be public and it’s every person’s choice. But creating a better environment for talking about mental health… that’s where we need to get to.”

The past month hasn’t exactly been the easiest, but I’ve also heard things that other people are going through that remind me that there’s no room to be bitter, and so much need for compassion.

#65 Moviebreak.JPG

#65 Theatre Break

06 March 2018 // San Diego, California

Shoutout to MoviePass for making it reasonable for me to catch 30 minutes of Black Panther instead of sitting in traffic on my way home. How did people even survive in 2016? Such a mystery.

#66 Damn Good Doughnuts.JPG

#66 Damn Good Doughnuts

07 March 2018 // San Diego, California

In the world of communication, the messages and stories that are the most effective are almost always the clearest ones. For example, this new doughnut shop just advertised damn good doughnuts. I ended up buying a dozen and they were correct. Damn good. For better or worse, though, this phenomenon isn’t just limited to doughnuts.

Harmful ideas often spread just because they are more easily understood than the truth.

The world needs truth tellers, good leaders, and compassionate people to master the art of clarity.

I put everything I write or work on through a ten question test, to make sure it’s as clear as I can make it. Whether you’re in nonprofit marketing like me, some other form of advocacy, or even if you’re just interested in moving people, you just might find it a useful process too.

#67 Stories Have Magic.JPG

#67 Stories Have Magic

08 March 2018 // San Diego, California

“Our stories have magic– they give shape and purpose to communities and even nations. Storytelling has depth that brings collective empathy, reminding us of the essence of our humanity, the ubuntu, the humanness, that makes us human beings."

–Tererai Trent

#68 Beignet's Third Birthday.JPG

#68 Beignet Turns Three

09 March 2018 // San Diego, California

We’ve got ourselves a three year old now!

Bringing home this this doughnut is easily one of the best decisions we’ve made. I’m so glad we went the route of adoption too.

There’s nothing quite like Beignet hops to welcome you back home at the end of the day, having a fellow Enneagram 7 in the house, and knowing that beneath all that puppy energy is a total sweetheart.

Here’s to many more years of fluff in our lives.

#69 SD Half Expo.JPG

#69 SD Half Expo

10 March 2018 // San Diego, California

My body is ready.

Let’s hope!

#70 SD Half Marathon.JPG

#70 San Diego Half Marathon

11 March 2018 // San Diego, California

Good run- San Diego Half is in the books!

I got to run mostly with my sis-in-law, and my nephew was the one to spot me actually cross the finish line. I beat my last race time by about ten minutes, and I felt like I had even more gas in the tank after this race versus the last time.

I absolutely love the atmosphere around race events, and I just might be hooked now. Can’t wait till the next.

#71 Coffee Grab.JPG

#71 Coffee Grab

12 March 2018 // San Diego, California

“What sustains us, what is fundamentally beautiful is compassion; for yourself and for those around you."

–Lupita Nyongo

#72 One Year at Plant With Purpose.JPG

#72 One Year at Plant With Purpose

13 March 2018 // San Diego, California

Today marked one year since I started working at Plant With Purpose.

When I got the job I was thrilled to land a job where I could use creativity and marketing... for an organization that exists entirely to help people... internationally! What a great fit. I still feel that way.

These were things I’ve known I wanted to do for a very long time, but I’ve learned so much in just a year by getting to fully engage.

Then there’s the team I get to work with, the communities I get to serve, the ones I got to visit last year in Thailand and Tanzania, and the ones I have yet to meet.

One year down and it definitely feels like I’m just getting started.

#73 Pre-Trip Library Visit.JPG

#73 Pre-Trip Library Visit

14 March 2018 // San Diego, California

The week before a trip is just the right time for a library visit to pick out what I’ll be reading on the road. Suggestions?

#74 Doing Good in an Age of Anger.JPG

#74 Doing Good in an Age of Anger

15 March 2018 // San Diego, California

If you’ve been paying any attention at all for the past eighteen months, you know we’re living in a strange and divisive time.

There’s so much tension these days. I’m not just talking about the tension between people (although, f’real, there’s a lot of that.) There’s also a whole lot of tension within people.

Like… you want to find common ground with different people, but you also know that neutrality towards injustice is to side with the oppressor. You know the news cycle is unhealthy, but you also believe it’s important to stay aware of the issues. You believe in hope and optimism and positivity, but you also don’t want to be dismissive of the real problems people face.

There are so many questions like these that I’ve been trying to wrestle with over the past few months. And I haven’t just been wrestling. I’ve been taking notes. Paying attention to people who I think are doing good things in spite of the current conditions.

I’ve compiled the things I’ve learned from them into a guide. And these have been such helpful things for me that I’m giving it away for free. Visit and you’ll be able to download Doing Good in an Age of Anger. That’s something we could all use more of.

#75 Embargo Grill.JPG

#75 Embargo Grill

16 March 2018 // San Diego, California

This is embarassing... I’ve lived next to Embargo Grill for a year and never went in until this weekend. Oh my. They are amazing, and those were the best empanadas I’ve had in years. I am very sorry everybody for letting you down and I promise to make it up to you all by eating their Cubanos with consistency.

#76 Happy Place.JPG

#76 Happy Place

17 March 2018 // San Diego, California

Today I ate a macaron the size of my fist and also a giant poke bowl, but I still think this was my favorite part of the day.

#77 Ladle

18 March 2018 // San Diego, California

When the day you ran a half marathon is the most *relaxing* one you’ve had in about a month, that’s when you know life has gotten pretty wild. It’s just been one thing after another with car stuff, sickness, work deadlines, the whole shebang.

The past few weeks have totally been a sprint towards a finish line that comes tomorrow, when we leave for a trip that I’ve been wanting to go on for as long as I can remember.

In the meantime, I’ll just say that when life gets to be all kinds of madness, it’s a really great thing to have good people around you. That can make all the difference.

#78 LAX Dropoff.jpg

#78 LAX Dropoff

19 March 2018 // Los Angeles, California

I never thought I’d find a big downside to international travel, but there totally is one- not being allowed to take along the dogs in your life.

We dropped her off in LA last night and she’ll be roomies with Bandit for the next few weeks. So thankful to Nat & Moose for taking her in.

But for real, chewing on ice cubes is like her favorite thing. She would’ve loved an entire country called Iceland.

#79 Reykjavik Bound.JPG

#79 Reykjavik Bound

20 March 2018 // Los Angeles, California

Here's to that next adventure.

Here's to the string of flights to get to where you need to be. The people you'll run into along the way. The swim holes you'll strip down for and the nights out you'll suit up for.

Here's to the bright lights of a foreign metro, or and the dim home lamps of a rural village. Here's to every flavor of every bite of every unfamiliar dish you'll come across.

Here's to the unlikely souvenir. The crumpled ticket stub in a pocket. The scuff mark from a subway platform. The bruise from the thing you did that hits the perfect balance between kinda dumb and still worth it.

Here's to the train cars, hillsides, Irish pubs, and rooftops that will host your next breakthrough epiphany. The subtle sacredness of an unexpected holy site.

Here's to going, looking to consume minimal materials, but to drink in new, diverse perspectives from the tap. To going in with a whole heart and open hands, humbly wondering what you have to offer back to the world.

Here's to experience, belonging, and purpose. And always going where the love is.

#80 Reykjavik.JPG

#80 Reykjavik

21 March 2018 // Reykjavik, Iceland

Day one in Reykjavik was mostly made up of adjusting to the time zone and the cold and hanging around the city center.

Central Reykjavik is artsy and full of personality, all while still having that clean, bold Scandinavian feel. We walked around small shops in between efforts to find some of the more interesting food options.


#81 Seljalandsfoss.JPG

#81 Selajalandsfoss

22 March 2018 // Rangárping, Iceland

So thankful.

This was one of the most breathtaking days of my life. We hopped on the road towards Southern Iceland and found ourselves underneath waterfalls, across from glaciers, beside volcanoes, and in geothermal pools. We even got free ice cream! 🍦

#82 Thank You Iceland.jpg

#82 Thank You Iceland

23 March 2018 // Keflavík, Iceland

Thank you, Iceland. It really has been a dream come true- one I’ve had for a very long time.

#83 Tim and Sarah.JPG

#83 Tim and Sarah

24 March 2018 // Tonbridge, England

I met Tim in college. He was spending a year on exchange from England. I had just spent a semester in Argentina and wanted to hang with international students all the time. We grabbed coffee and hit it off. That was seven years ago.

I met Sarah a year and a half later when Tim was back in England and I was visiting London. They just started dating. Though we kept in touch, that was the last time I saw Tim in person until this weekend.

This is one of my favorite things about life. The simple coffee and conversation can turn into a wedding abroad seven years later. It really makes me wonder what seeds I’m planting in my life right now and what they’ll be in seven years.

#84 Bridal Brunch Sendoff.JPG

#84 Bridal Brunch

25 March 2018 // Tonbridge, England

It was a fantastic weekend! Enjoy the honeymoon. ‘Til next time, which is hopefully soon and maybe somewhere in Canada! 🇺🇸🇬🇧🇨🇦

#85 Fontana di Trevi.JPG

#85 Fontana di Trevi

26 March 2018 // Rome, Italy

In just a couple hours we managed to grab ourselves a Roman breakfast, and blitz through to the Trevi Fountain, the Vatican, the Colosseum, and the Pantheon.

I know rushing is the least Italian thing ever, but we didn’t really intend to see Rome. I’d been to all these places and was thinking it would be more of a hub to get to Siena. Deanna had never been to Italy, though, and I wanted her to see some of the exciting spots.

We made a quest out of it, then managed to grab our bags and train with just enough time to spare. Now it’s on to my old home base- Siena!

#86 Piazza del Campo.JPG

#86 Piazza del Campo

27 March 2018 // Siena, Italy

Siena, Italia. 🇮🇹

One of my favorite cities in the world, hands down. In 2010, I actually got to live here for a whole summer. Taking every day extremely slow, having the best pizza al taglio around every corner, actually getting pretty decent at Italian, and watching people make their way through everyday life on streets that haven’t been changed in centuries. I can’t believe I got that treat. That summer was so good for me in a lot of ways.

Now let’s see how that Italian of mine has been holding up.

#87 Return to Siena.JPG

#87 Return to Siena

28 March 2018 // Siena, Italy

When I left Siena after studying there for a summer, I said what I imagine a good majority of study abroad students say- I’ll be coming back!

It’s a weird and amazing thing when you actually make good on that declaration. It took me eight years and I now have a wife to come with me. Most things in my life have since changed but this place hasn’t changed much for hundreds of years.

Anyways, it’s a thrill to be back even if it did take a good bit of time. Enjoying every second I’m here.

#88 Cinzia.JPG

#88 Cinzia

29 March 2018 // Siena, Italy

Io sono riunito con la mia professoressa Italiana dell’estate che ho pasato qui otto anni fa. Cinzia, è stato bello rivederti e grazie per i apertivi!

La seconda foto è un flashback dell'ultima volta nel 2010.

#89 Montalcibo.JPG

#89 Montalcino

30 March 2018 // Montalcino, Italy

One thing I didn’t do quite enough last time I was in Siena was... leave Siena. I mean, I love it there, but it’s also surrounded by quite a few other small but magical feeling Tuscan towns.

Return trips are for making things right and so before leaving Tuscany we took a quick bus ride into Montalcino, where a few old streets and thin stone alleyways take you between abbeys and wineries. Brunellos are a must.

#90 La Spezia.JPG

#90 La Spezia

31 March 2018 // La Spezia, Italy

“The mysteries of the faith are degraded when made into objects of affirmation or negation, when they ought to be the object of contemplation.”

–Simone Weil

Philippe Lazaro365