Nothing New for a Year 2017- Cycling Across the USA

As I write this, it’s is September 2018. This blog is over a year late, but better late than never in this scenario I think. I had said I was going to do a monthly blog about my year of nothing new and I utterly failed at that. I acknowledge that and apologize on not following through on sharing this endeavor. I was just far too busy and overwhelmed in 2017, all by my own choices. I’m just finally catching up now!

To recap, 2017 was my year of buying nothing new (see the original blog for details). Basically, it meant attempting to go the entire year without buying or receiving anything brand new. Anything already used was fine, just no new items.

In my last blog, Nothing New for a Year- Spring Update, I had just finished a speaking tour in Europe. This blog is about my bike tour across the USA. 

After returning to the United States from Europe I had just eight days to prepare to bike from New York City to Seattle, Washington, a 3,700-mile trip. I had been so busy for the last seven weeks in Europe that I had done very little preparation for the bike ride as far as my gear goes. The real challenging part about this trip for me, is that it wasn’t just me, it was about 30 of us cycling across the country, and I was the main organizer. I had way more on my hands than just preparing for myself. I was finding lodging and volunteer activities for about 60 stops across the country and planning out our route, among other things! The trip was called Green Riders- Good Deeds on Bikes.

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The Story of My Stolen Bamboo Bike

After nearly a year in the making, I am so excited to finally release the story of how my bamboo bike got stolen and the roller coaster ride I went on to try to get it back. Many of you saw the adventure as it unfolded, but you only saw a fraction of the whole story. When I decided to search for the bike I had a feeling it was going to be quite the adventure, so I decided to film it, but I never, ever expected it to turn out like this. I truly hope that you’ll take the time to watch this short film. I believe you’ll be very glad you did.

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First Daughter and the Black Snake Documentary Review

In the times we live in today, it can be extremely daunting and challenging just to stand up for basic human and environmental rights. Standing up to giant corporations can seem like an almost impossible task. It’s easy to get really down about the state of the world.

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Winona LaDuke’s Hemp Farm

I had the great honor and pleasure of spending some time with the one and only Winona LaDuke at her hemp farm!
I have the greatest respect for people who dedicate their lives to improving their communities and the world, and Winona is a powerful example of this. She is truly leading the way into a more sustainable and just world and has been at it for decades, before I was even born.

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Plant It Forward

What is plant it forward? Plant-it-forward is a movement to encourage more people to plant in the backyard. Similar to the Ice Bucket Challenge, participants will plant 3 seeds (or plants), then call out three friends on social media to do the same. It doesn’t matter if they are vegetables, sunflowers, flowers, or big trees – be as creative as you wish. The goal: MORE PLANTING!

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Bamboo Bike Auction

UPDATE:

The bamboo bike auction is over and the bike has found a new home.
Tonia Howick won the bike for $700, all of which will be used to buy bikes for kids living in low-income scenarios.
Tonia teaches rhetoric at UF in Gainesville and has wanted to start commuting by bike for quite some time. She read my book this year and was inspired to get a bamboo bike. She wanted to purchase a used bike because she tries to buy used and not purchase new, but she was unable to find one. Then my auction popped up in her newsfeed! Today she came down from Gainesville to pick it up and she even brought me a lovely gift of homemade blueberry jam and a hand-knit dish cloth.
I’m so excited for this bike to go to her because this is going to help her start a new chapter of riding her bike to work.
The goodness of the bike will live on. I should be able to get bikes for about seven kids with these funds. And with the funds raised when this bike was stolen and returned, that will bring the total up to about 57 bikes for kids!
Talk about a bike that keeps on giving!

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The Power of the Seed

I may not have a whole lot of money, but I’ve got a whole lot of pumpkins!
I am absolutely enamored by the power of the seed. Allow me to share this experience with you.
In January I had dinner with my friend Terry Meer. He made me pumpkin from his garden. This is not just a typical pumpkin you’d find at the grocery store though. This is the fantastic Seminole Pumpkin. I desperately wanted to grow it myself, so I scooped the seeds out of the three pumpkins we cut open, and I took the seeds home with me. In a few months when the time was right I planted them into my gardens.

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My Favorite Moment of Foraging in South Florida

This was my favorite moment of my foraging trip in South Florida.
We spotted a house with two coconut trees absolutely loaded with coconuts. I took an educated guess that they were not harvesting the trees, as a vast majority of trees are never harvested.
So we stopped the car and knocked on the front door. Sure enough I was right.
The trees had hundreds of fallen coconuts around them, likely a few year’s worth. They were very happy for us to harvest the trees, so we got right to it.

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