Or at least that’s what it felt like. On October 10, 2020, my girlfriend and friend planted trees with about 30 other people in a park maintained by the Houston Parks Department. The event was organized by One Tree Planted, one of my favorite organizations to donate to.

The event was well organized. Houston Parks had already dug the holes and placed all of the trees beside the holes. I think in all we planted about 600 trees. It was quite fun. At the end of it, I felt like some of my stress had gone away. It seems impossible to live without causing harm to the earth, but this event let me give the earth some new hats. Doing good feels good.

A few weeks later, I started picking up trash around my apartment. There is a small creek that runs in front of my apartment through a wooded area. It’s really quite idyllic, but the creek transports plastic throughout the entire length of the woods. When the creek overflows, as it often does with more than a light rain, lots of trash is scattered throughout the woods. Sure, each time it rains all of my work will have been undone as more trash is deposited. But, the trash I did pick up was not deposited downstream. Maybe it is useless. I do not care. This is an activity that I can do that makes me feel like I’m making a difference. And anyway, I always feel so much better after I’m done. As a neat bonus, my girlfriend also likes doing this. Trashy dates are a new fun thing for us!


Anyways, it’s Christmas! I’ve been spending a lot of time with my family, playing cards, home escape rooms, and watching all of the same Christmas movies that we do every year. Also, there is lots of good wine and warm coffee. Both good things to be happy about. I am very thankful that I get to spend this time with my family. Time is surely precious.

I hope you have happy holidays and that you find your own way to hug the earth!