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GRATITUDE x COLLABORATIONS

 

Why “Gratitude Collaborative”?
 
For one thing, gratitude is what makes us happy. The “stuff” we have in our lives doesn’t mean anything – it’s the recognition and appreciation we assign to our things, both tangible and not, that determines our self-fulfillment.
 
This is the time of year when #Blessed is trending, but we at GC try to nurture that gratitude all year. What allows us to do that is a commitment to mindfulness and philanthropy. #SquadGoals. And, we get by with a little help from our friends.
 
Over the past year, we have done some outreach and networking, and what we’ve found is that like attracts like. We have met a number of local artisans and small business owners that share our values and work ethic. We are so fortunate to be collaborating with companies and individuals that enhance our brand and perpetuate our goals. They inspire us to work harder and to give back more.

A couple of weeks ago, Dana and I were walking through the Brentwood Farmers Market, and we struck up a conversation with Lisa Mcfarlin, co-founder of small batch granola company KITH & THYME, and her lovely daughter Lily. It took 5 minutes before we felt like we were “kith,” which means “familiar friends” or “kin.” Lisa has a full time job with The Giving Keys, a company that employs those transitioning out of homelessness in Los Angeles to make key necklaces and other jewelry. But, she, with her partner Patrese Hedding, make incredibly delicious granola.

Lisa speaks poetically about Kith & Thyme. For her and Patrese, their granola is meant to nourish the soul as much as provide delicious nutrition. They bake the granola in layers, and you're meant to go on a journey as you taste the various components. Lisa mentions that their customers are the type of people who sit down at the breakfast table – they want to enjoy the granola as a family. Family dinners are also important to Lisa and Patrese, and they host a number of them throughout the year, pairing their creative friends with six delicious courses prepared by a gourmet chef. Lisa lives in a mid-century house in Calabasas and is working toward making the orchard on her property functional so that she may offer food donations to local co-ops. The various flavors of Kith & Thyme make a sweet addition to our gift boxes, and we love the message they are spreading.

-- LB xx

 

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

We are so grateful for our family and friends and the ability to do what we love.  We love giving gifts that have the power to change someone's day.  Our boxes have a donation built into their cost, so each one also changes the day of someone in need by buying them a meal.  We bought over 3,200 meals this year, and we hope to double that number next year.  And, that brings us so much joy.  Have a Happy Thanksgiving!  What are YOU grateful for? 

-- LB & DRA xx

Flowers and Pretty Things

The other day I walked into Dana’s house and heard her talking to someone in the kitchen.

“I know you’re not happy this morning, but you have so much to look forward to,” she said.  “You’re so beautiful and you make so many people happy.”

I almost reverse-roboted out of the house and got back in my car.  Whoever she was talking to needed wine and chocolate.  Like, yesterday.

“It’s okay, you can open up to me,” she continued.

I had to see who this poor soul was — so I knew to buy red or white / milk or dark.

I walked into the kitchen and Dana had tears in her eyes.  But, there was no one in the room with her…  And her phone was in the hall.  

Had my suspicions been confirmed?  Had Dana gone crazy?  She hadn’t stopped working or slept in awhile…

She handed me a flower.

“Could you tickle this peony for me?”  She handed me a stem with a gorgeous deep burgundy ball on top.

What??

“They have to be tickled to simulate ants in nature,” she said.  "Peonies won’t open unless the syrup is moved around.  We’re in my kitchen without any ants, so you need to pretend that you’re the ants.”

Of course.  She was talking to the flowers.

Later, when I told my friend Amy Murphy, Founder & CEO of event planning company, Parties, Petals and Paper, she was like, “Obviously.  Peonies are queens.  [Crown Emoji].”

Well, whaddya know.  Flowers have feelings, too.

We’re grateful to Wild Flora for all of their flower knowledge and guidance!!!!!!

I bet Dana’s hugging the Garden Roses right now…

— LB xx

Welcome to Gratitude Collaborative

WELCOME TO GRATITUDE COLLABORATIVE!!!

The picture above is what two best friends working together looks like.  Sweet, right?

Well, what you can’t see is that I’m not wearing shoes, Dana is in pajama pants, we are both covered in a less than attractive layer of sweat, and we both need manicures like WHAT.  But, the love that you see in the photo is real.  We’re tired, hungry and go from being under to overly caffeinated every couple hours, but we’re doing what we makes us happy with a person that makes us happy.

Dana began making gift boxes three years ago.  At the time, she was working full time as producer of multi-million dollar film and TV projects.  (Three years ago, I was also a film/TV producer, but of multi-dollar projects.)  Seeing the joy that giving and receiving gifts brought to people, Dana was determined to transition into offering gifting services full time.  She founded Gratitude Collaborative in 2014, and made sure to model the business in a way that nurtured a charitable component.  Helping friends give and receive gifts was important to Dana, but so was giving back.  A portion of the proceeds of every GC gift box goes directly to feeding children in our community.  Therefore, the gifts that Gratitude Collaborative give are more than just presents — they’re contributions.

I joined GC last year… when I was eight months pregnant.  I saw the incredible things Dana was doing with the company, and I wanted to be a part of it from the ground floor — and I wanted to work with my best friend.  Well, it’s been a little over a year that I’ve been with Gratitude Collaborative, and I’ve gone through every emotion as a working mom.  I was humbled by the notion that there’s no “working from home,” once you have a baby and it hasn’t always been easy to create a balance.  Dana has been doing the heavy lifting as the company has grown, but I’m very happy I will be able to tell my now almost 11 month old son Henry that he used to join mommy on treks across Los Angeles to deliver gift boxes.

Dana and I have learned so much about each other as we have endured the challenges that come with starting your own business.  Luckily we share similar ideals as to what we want Gratitude Collaborative to be, as well as a toolbox of conflict resolution strategies for when we disagree.  They say you shouldn’t work with friends, but we are currently proving them wrong.  Chocolate helps.

We’re so glad you took time to visit the site, and we hope you come back to see the great things we have planned.  We are grateful for YOU!

— LB xx