An Announcement from Hallie.

Hey friends! Hallie and Brand, founder and owner of Dot, here.  

If you've been following this journey since the beginning or even for the past few years, you may have noticed that things have gotten significantly quieter (and most of the time silent) in this little space over the past few months. 

I'm still here. We (as in me and my husband Gus and our sweet puppy Maestro) are doing really well. There's been a lot of life in the in between time of wrapping up the shop last summer and now, and things are really beautifully good. This spring has been a busy one as we've traveled a lot for Gus to visit and interview at MBA programs all over the country, and we're thrilled to announce that we'll be landing at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee for the next two years. 

After a lot of prayer and conversation with trusted family, friends and mentors, we've decided close our Dot product line and stop selling our branded school and art supplies at the end of this month. We have loved being a part of this industry and space, but my heart is to help people make big impact with their small decisions and the products no longer are the best way I know how to do that. 

I do want to make it clear that Dot as an organization will continue in a small capacity. We have a few small projects (one being our school supply bundle partnership with Christ Covenant School) that will be continuing under the brand of Dot. We're keeping those limited for now, and keeping a back of the mind prayer about what God may do longterm--if anything at all. For now, my "one thing" is to learn to love and be a part of this new adventure God has given us, and I'm excited to be a part of what's going on in Nashville.  

The past four years of running Dot have been some of the very best of my life, and I want to thank you for all of your support. I can honestly say I've learned more through this adventure than any other one pursuit in my life thus far, and it was worth every single moment. 

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Over the next two weeks, we'll be clearing out all of our remaining inventory. We want to celebrate all the good that this chapter has been by giving you one last chance to get a little piece of Dot for your own. Everything in the shop is currently 15% off with the coupon "DoOneThing". Over the next two weeks, we may mark it down even further as we approach our end date of May 15. 

We've got just a tiny little bit of inventory left.

About 65 planners, 90 blank journals (also selling those in packs of 5 for SUPER cheap), 30-ish handpainted journals, a few pencil sets, about 30 bags, t-shirts and all of the extra little things. 

We've added all remaining inventory to the website and even have some leftover holiday journals available! I'm assuming it'll all go quickly, especially the handpainted line (some of which is on the website for the first time ever this week!). Go check it out, and grab a couple of your favorites. We'll keep you updated on social media if we run out (or think we will run out) before May 15th! 

Thank you for supporting our work over the past four years and making it possible for us to provide more than forty full year scholarships (and so many more incredible adventures) to students around the world. We did one thing, and it changed everything. 

-Hallie Brand

Living out "Simplicity Allows Creativity". A note from Hallie.

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Hey friends,

Hallie Brand here, Dot's Founder, with a quick note about some changes you'll see (and may have already noticed) over the past few months and next few months. 

This journey of entrepreneurship has been a major highlight of my life, but some things have got to change to make it sustainable for this new season.

I'm working on reshaping the way I talk about things on social media and our mass communications. You see, over the past few years, we've had this big and ever rotating "team" of sorts made up of Interns, part-time staff, and me. I've had the opportunity to mentor nineteen amazing college girls through our intern program, and they have changed my life and my leadership in a thousand different ways. We've focused on empowering students--and I wasn't a student anymore--so it was easy to let my student team be the focus. However, I'm in a season now where God is blessing the small things in my life, and I want to honor that. We'll continue to do projects with different people (and honestly I've learned that I have no idea what the future holds with all of this), but for the next few months, you'll be hearing mostly just from me. In the beginning, I adopted a "we" mentality to make myself believe big things about the company I was creating, and it was beautiful the way that it made people trust and join our community. However, today, it's just me again in our office (at my home) running this crazy little thing God has called me to again and again. 

It's going to be quieter than it once was. I'm feeling overwhelmed by all the voices on social media lately. There have been times where connecting with people on social media was incredibly life-giving for me, but over the past few months, I've found myself riddled with comparison syndrome and then guilt when I wasn't living up to my own expectations or the standards that others were setting. I'm not saying that social media is a bad thing. Quite the contrary actually, it's helped us reach thousands of people around the globe with our message over the past for years. But this season is one where I personally need a little less of it in my life. I'll still be posting--I'm assuming that Instagram or our email newsletter is how you found this--but it will be less often than the once a day standard I once had, and it'll probably be more centered around a particular project that we're working on (or blog posts about fun things we're learning about making small decisions with a big impact). 

I'm incredibly blessed to be in a position where I have a platform to use for good, and I want to do that to my biggest ability. And I think the best way I can do that now is to talk about being small. To talk about Doing One Thing. Because life isn't about the huge one-time things that everyone sees. It's about the day-in-and-day-out living life with the people you love and the practices you implement to make yourself more whole. And this year, as I learn more about those practices, I want to bring you alongside me. 

I'm not exactly sure what that will look like, but I'm praying and thinking through changes that I'll be implementing this year. I'll share those with you as they are confirmed in my heart and head. My hope is still the same, that Dot would be a place that empowers people to live out their callings through education. But my definition of education and callings and empowerment are all a little more grey and nuanced than they were when we first started. Because that's life, right? 

Thank you for understanding and for being on this journey of a life well lived with me.

 

Owner and Founder, Dot Products

Do One Thing : Hurricane Harvey

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Support our Texan friends with a limited edition journal
supporting Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.

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A Message from our Founder,
Hallie D. Brand.


I was in ninth grade when Hurricane Katrina devastated the Mississippi and Louisiana coasts, wiping away so much that we held dear and pouring more than ten feet of water into our recently renovated home. To say that it was tragic simply doesn't sum up the experience, but looking back twelve years, it was one of the most formative periods of my life and I'm thankful for the lessons of community, simplicity, recovery, and so much grace that came with that time. Since then, we've been given a number of opportunity to help people in their time of need, and today we've got a big one for you. 

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As you know, Hurricane Harvey caused devastation in south Texas last week.
Our talented intern and Texan, Kylie Stinson, created the Texas Journal to support the recovery efforts and provide school supplies and other necessities to families who have lost everything as they adjust to a "new normal".

We're working on confirming the exact students we will support, and we will get those details to you as they are confirmed.

Journals are available through September 13th and will begin shipping September 23rd. Order yours today and support recovery efforts in south Texas.

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Welcome to our new Intern (and Dot Planner Team Member) Kylie Stinson! I have loved working with Kylie on the Planner all summer, and I'm so excited to have her learning about all things Dot this fall! 

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“Simplicity Allows Creativity” became our mantra and goal as we walked through the process of creating the Dot Planner, and we love that you can now actually carry this reminder with you daily. Hand-lettered by our planner designer, Kylie, this quote has been a recurring theme on our feeds and in our lives.

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Did you get a chance to order your Dot Planner this summer? We've got a few left on our website here, and we'll have more available as Christmas approaches. 

#PlanOneThing : The Making of a Planner

Today, we wanted to explain the "WHY?" behind many of our planner decisions. I asked Sarah Kate and Kylie a little about the process to developing the planner and why they made some of the decisions they did. Remember, this project was almost 100% their implementation. Alana and I definitely had some input, but the girls were the brains behind this beautiful planner now in your hands!

And if you haven't gotten one yet, what are you waiting for?

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Why Simplicity?

    Over the years, I have had many planners, and so many of those have been so fun (but also so busy).  Throughout this past year, God has been weighing on my heart to simplify, not just for this planner but in all aspects.  I have been learning that simplicity is a good foundation for creativity to flow.  Busy isn’t always best and saying yes to everything (stuff, people, activities) drains us and puts us in a box.  However, when we seek to choose those things that are life-giving and try not to do all the things, we are able to fully let our creativity flow (and that looks so different for everyone, which is beautiful).

Why This Layout and These Features?

 The design of this planner was built upon the idea that "Simplicity allows creativity". (You'll see that quote on bags soon!) We believed that by choosing a bare planner design, we were choosing to let you guys take control to use the planner in the way that best equips you.  So often in my life, my planner has been a yardstick of success measurement -- if it was empty I was lazy, and if it was fully I was productive.  I have grown to see how detrimental this was to my health--physical, emotional, and spiritual, and I continued to learn that we were not created to be machines.  This planner has just enough foundation to empower and equip you to take it and run.  And that is our hope.

Getting It Done 

Guys, the Dot Planner has been in the works since February! After getting the doodles into the Dot Team’s hands, they told me to start thinking up a vision and team.  From there we began discussing how best to market the planner to a particular audience (thank you Dr. Price in the Business School at MC).  I recruited the team (Kylie, SB, and Mel), and from there we have been taking incremental steps to complete this baby!  Development of the actual planner took a lot of brainstorming with Hallie and Kylie, first, second, third, and fourth digital drafts, FINALLY receiving proofs from the printshop, changing a thousand little things about the proofs... and at each step, we continued moving onward.  

Then came Hallie’s peptalks about all things social media (which scared me to death!!), but we did it.  

By the time we started sharing on social media, we were hopeful and a little bit hesitant. What if noone ordered?? We planned to order 50 and bumped it up to 100 right before we launched. We pressed "Publish" on the first social media post and sat back to wait. But we didn't have to wait long. The preorders came quickly! We cheered with each one that came in (literally guys, you should see our group message). EIGHTY ONE guys, originally we were preordering 50 and worried that we wouldn't sell out of those. Overwhelmed in the most blessed way is the only way to describe this feeling that has overcome our team. And you know what, my description is all over because let’s face it, this process has been the most breathtaking whirlwind and I am still pinching myself that they are finally out in your hands to use and #PlanOneThing!

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Supporting SK's Vision

When Sarah Kate came to me with this planner dream, she had a vision for it. When I say vision, I mean she (literally) already had every page sketched out how she thought a good planner would be constructed, which made my job that much easier. My first step was taking these sketches and turning them into a usable design. From there, we looked at the pages, printed them out, filled them in, so we could make sure we were designing a planner that not only looked pretty, but was actually functional. The whole design process we were bouncing ideas off of each other and tweaking things, and after about four finished drafts, we finally got it right! One of the challenges of the process was making this design that was so simple feel complete without all the extra elements. It was rewarding to be able to take SK’s dreams and visions of this planner and turn them into an actual, physical design!


It has been such a joy to see these girls work their magic. Their gifts and talents are different and so complimentary, and we've found a good team truly is one in which each person works within their unique abilities! Next week, we'll be sharing some of the tips and tricks we have for getting started in your Dot Planner. We're loving following the hashtag and seeing in so many of your stories how you've started to #PlanOneThing! Tag us and follow along next week as we bring you the next blog post in the series : A Guide To Go and Do

Got questions about how to practically use each section? Share them with us in an email to hallie@dotproducts.org and we'll make sure to answer in an upcoming blogpost (and in your email inbox too!). 

#PlanOneThing : The People Behind The Planner

Hey friends! If you've been following this adventure of creating a planner, you know that there's an incredible team of college students that have worked to make it possible. Today, as the first piece of our #PlanOneThing series, we wanted to introduce you to the girls! I (Hallie, founder and owner of Dot), asked the girls a couple questions to let you in on the talent behind the planner and what they were thinking as they dreamed up this beautiful book! Read about each girl below, and check back tomorrow for our next post : The Making Of A Planner! 

The Girls

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Sarah Kate Griffin

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Kylie Stinson

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Melissa Sones

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Sara Beth Pardue


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Student Visionary
Find her on Instagram : @sk.griff

Q: Tell me about yourself. 
A: I am a senior at Mississippi College, which usually makes me gulp pretty hard considering May is kind of a question mark.  I am majoring in Psychology with minors in Studio Art and General Business.  I love all things stationery & school supplies.  I think my favorite thing to do is learn -- from new subjects in school to new hobbies to new adventures! Speaking of learning, I am learning to love coffee--I’ve loved the atmosphere of it for a long time, but I am finally coming around to the drink.

Q: What made you pursue creating a planner with Dot?
A: Honestly, I was discontent (in February, whoops) with my planner, and really lots of planners that I have had over the years.  After thinking and lots of self-pep talks, I finally got the courage to waltz into The Dot Shop. Instead of studying for a test one night, I doodled some ideas. Before walking in the Shop, I had butterflies in my stomach & my nerves were all over the place; however, there was just something about those two ladies who were so encouraging.  When they said I was going to head it up, I was floored; never did I think they would do that, but their confidence in me spurred me onward.  From there I slowly (not because I didn’t want to scream it from the rooftops, but because I was scared it wasn’t going to happen) began letting in my community; and their support helped me to take bolder steps, confident that doors were flying opened and that this was so much bigger than a planner.  So really, I know this was a God thing & that is where my courage came and continues to come from--and that has spurred me forward in leaving every ounce on the table.  From overcoming fears of social media to learning communication as a unit, this entire process has been breaking boundaries & the growth is something that is both hard and good.   

Q: Why did you choose the people you chose to help you create this planner?
A: I still am just in awe that Hallie put the task of forming a team in my hands.  I was sure that this project turned planner was just going to be something my idea initiated & then Hallie and the Dot Team ran with.  Nope.  Hallie’s confidence in me, helped me to have confidence in choosing these ladies that have poured so much into this planner.  

First, I needed a graphic designer.  I have seen Kylie’s masterpieces as I have worked alongside her over the past year, and the minute I needed a graphic designer, I just knew.  This entire process has been a whole lot of relationship building on top of spreads and material picking; and getting to know Kylie has been one of the biggest blessings from this.  Her creativity and passion merged together in all the right ways to bring this vision to life!

Knowing I wanted to incorporate illustrations into the planner (as a stress reliever for me and hopefully you too), my first thought was that I needed a theme.  I had seen some of Melissa's and SaraBeth’s artwork, and I loved their styles and their hearts; so I quickly began connecting dots to make it all work.  Thankfully Kylie and Hallie helped with those dots, and we decided that Melissa could do a spread inspiring users to do one thing in your home, while SB inspired to do one thing as you travel.  And let me tell you, when they said yes and sent in their designs, Hallie, Kylie, and I were ecstatic & they merged together beautifully!


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Graphic Designer
Find her on Instagram: @kyliestnsn

Q: Tell me about yourself.
A: I'm from Tyler, Texas and am a junior at Mississippi College. I'm a graphic design major but I’m pretty much always searching for a new art skill to learn. (Currently it’s sewing, with the goal of making my own clothes!) I'm constantly pushing myself to create, whether it’s taking portraits, designing wedding invitations, painting, or making a planner. When I'm creating, I love listening to either podcasts or musical soundtracks. I’m passionate about traveling and meeting people around the world because it really reminds me how big our God is.

Q: How did you get into graphic design?
A: I’ve always loved art, but I thought it would always just be a hobby. That changed when my high school art teacher showed me that art could be a career beyond being a teacher. I chose a graphic design major not because I knew anything about it, but because it seemed like the most practical art degree. In my career so far, people have constantly had faith in me and seen more in me than even I did. I started my first major graphic design job, helping design icons for an app, when I had practically nothing in my portfolio. Despite this, my boss saw the art I had done and chose to give me a chance. Someone else who gave me a chance was Sarah Kate! I had obviously never designed a planner and wasn’t exactly proficient in InDesign (the software I used to design the planner), but SK believed in the art that I had done and that our style and passions would be a good fit. And I’m so glad that she did.

Q: Why did you say yes to being a part of the Dot Planner Team?
A: I was studying in London when SK asked me to be on the planner team. I had been praying about my fall semester, and which 3 or 4 things I could commit to so that I wouldn’t spread myself too thin. I knew this would be a big yes, but even despite the distance in both time and miles from fall semester, I knew this was a yes I needed to say. This was an encouraging and life-giving project, and one that could potentially help others simplify too!


Coloring Page Illustrator
Find her on Instagram: @mell_31

Q: Tell me about yourself.
A: My name is Melissa Sones. I am a sophomore Interior Design major at Mississippi State University and a member of Chi O. I'm truly a kid at heart. My favorite movies are Trolls and Moana, and I strive to be like Princess Poppy! I love scrunchies, and on my 20th birthday, I got ID'd for a rated R movie because I look like a kid too! 

Q: Why did you say yes to being a part of the Dot Planner team?
A: I said yes because I wanted to express my love for drawing by creating fun sketches of interior objects for people to let their imaginations run free while planning. I love to plan and know how stressful it can become sometimes so I think the doodle spreads are perfect for a little stress relief. I had so much fun creating the spread and hope everyone enjoys it!!


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Coloring Page Illustrator
Find her on Instagram: @sara_beth_pardue

Q: Tell me about yourself.
A: Hey, my name is Sara Beth Pardue! I'm nineteen years old and I'm a sophomore at Hinds Community College. I'm studying Art and if you're around long enough you'll catch me talking unapologetically about clothes. Although I have declared a major I like to keep an open mind about my future and give myself room to explore. I really hope my exploration includes opening my own clothing store one day! In addition to fashion I like to let my other creative juices flow -- I have been drawing since I can remember but I really started concentrating on the arts only as a senior in high school.

Q: Why did you say yes to being a part of the Dot Planner team?
A: I said yes to being an illustrator in the DOT planner because if a simple piece of art can provoke someone to take action in any part of their life, I feel that I have successfully taken my opportunity to offer what I can. Also, anything that Sarah Kate is apart of is bound to be amazing!


And there you have it, the Dot Planner Team! I hope you've loved learning about our girls as much as I've enjoyed working with them. We only have about 30 planners left, so grab yours today! 

Join us tomorrow for part two of the series: The Making of a Planner!

Spring Update

Happy Spring from 205 W Leake St!

We are so excited about warm weather, sunshine, and fun events on the Brick Streets. 
Over the past couple of weeks, we've received fun photos of your Dot gear in awesome places from the Grand Canyon to Honduras. 

#DesignOurTee

Of all the fun this year has brought, the #DesignOurTee campaign has been our most exciting endeavor yet. We received lots of submissions from talented student artists, and we loved getting to involve our supporters in this decision. 5,000 votes later, and we are reminded of how crazy awesome it is to be part of a network of doers and givers that know how to have fun for a good cause. 

Josh Gaddy's design won, with a reminder for us to Do One Thing in not one but five languages. This shirt is available to order online now, and will be in the shop soon!

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Upcoming Events

Sidewalk Sessions
Thursday, March 30 // 6-9pm // The Brick Streets
Join us on the brick streets for spring air and live music. Local shops will be open with new lines of fun things, activities for all ages, and music by local artists. Drop by for a minute or stay all evening - just make sure to tell us hello!

Clinton Spring Market
Saturday, April 8 // The Brick Streets
Here's another chance to support local businesses, this time at the annual spring market. Stores, restaurants, and local makers will be selling their goods with a fresh springtime vibe. 

Stray at Home Festival
Saturday, May 13 // 11am-7pm // Smith Park, Jackson
We are excited to be among the talented and ambitious makers that are pulling together this annual festival in Jackson. 
From the website:

Stray at Home is a day in which those who create connect with those who enjoy, and stories and art are spread into our homes.  We are here to share and celebrate their beauty – the designers and builders – the dreamers and doers – the musicians, artistic muses, and culture makers.

Do One Thing this Spring

Whether you join us on the brick streets, take our products on a life-changing trip, or find other ways to change the world, we want to be part of it. Keep tagging us in photos and using our products for good. Enjoy the spring weather, and stop by and see us sometime!

- The Dot Team

#DesignOurTee

We're designing a new Dot T-shirt, and we need you! We love working with you on our hand-painted journals, so we are so excited to include you in this project too! We are passionate about empowering students, whether that be our student sponsor children around the world or local student artists, so we are thrilled to collaborate with the the talented students around us!

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 What We Need From You :

A T-Shirt design that encompasses our motto "Do One Thing" and keeps in mind that we are a school and art supply company. "Do One Thing" means something different to everyone; from the choices we make about the products we buy, to using our art for good, be creative and figure out what it means to you. We also want this to be a great product for everyone, so try to keep the design relatively gender neutral. Overall, get creative and make this your own!

What You Get From Us : 

Your design on our t-shirt! You'll also receive 3 shirts for you and your friends, an opportunity to collaborate with Dot on a hand-painted journal line, $75 worth of Dot Products, and a Starbucks giftcard! 

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The Rules : 

  1. Artists must be enrolled in an educational program of some sort. (A.K.A You gotta be a student.)

  2. All artwork must be one of a kind and completely unique to the artist.

  3. To submit your design, email the design in JPG file along with a picture of yourself to hallie@dotproducts.org then fill out our Google Form. We will email you when we receive your completed submission.

  4. Unfortunately, current and former Dot Interns are not eligible to apply.

We are so excited to see what you come up with! For more information go to dotproducts.org/designourtee. We can't wait to hear from you!

Do One Thing : Encourage

The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the grandest intention
— Oscar Wilde

Throughout my life, in all seasons, encouragement from the people around me has impacted me more than anything else. When I'm struggling in school or with a situation in life, a kind text from a friend can change my whole perspective. Because of this I have developed a love and passion for using my words for good.

When the people around you are struggling, it is so easy to feel overwhelmed and powerless to help, but I want you to know it is so much easier than you think. Small, thoughtful gestures can often have much more of an impact than huge events or celebrations. People simply need to know that they are loved and cared for, and you have so much power to make this happen.  

The tongue is the strongest muscle in the human body; use yours to lift someone up today.
— Terri Ann Armstrong

When I want to do good for someone, I can often get overwhelmed and intimidated and end up doing nothing at all, so I have come up with a list of practical ways we can encourage and uplift the people around us:

  • When a friend is having a bad day, surprise them with their favorite coffee or drink
  • If you think about someone throughout your day, text them. Let them know you're thinking of them
  • Pay attention to people's strengths and what they do well, and tell them. Don't let what they do go unnoticed
  • If you're out shopping with a friend and they notice something they love, but don't buy it, get it for them and leave it at their door with a note telling them how much you love them and how much they deserve this gift
  • If a friend is going through a hard time, take her flowers and be willing to listen, but also be understanding if she doesn't want to talk.
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.
— Hebrews 10:24

There are a few things to keep in mind to be an effective encourager : be quiet and be consistent. 

Be Quiet :  There are two sides of this. First, be silent. Listen. You will never be able to fully care for the people around you if you don't even know whats going on in their life. Listen when they speak and always be watching for opportunities to encourage. Next, be quiet when doing good, not announcing everything you do. Your motivation should always be to uplift, not to be praised. 

Be Consistent : With so much uncertainty and change in our lives, we need people we can depend on . Be that for others. A note of encouragement is helpful and necessary, but it is not always enough on its own. A quick text once a week or meeting for dinner once a month can make a huge difference.

While it would be great to be able to encourage all of our friends all of the time, it just not possible. Instead of getting overwhelmed by the amount of people and options, we can choose one person to focus on and encourage them, pray for them, check on them, and serve them. We can't change the whole world in one day, but we can daily change the world for one.

We can all Do One Thing to encourage those around us and use our words to do good.

 

Do One Thing : Technology

Today I woke up to an alarm on my phone that goes off every weekday morning. I got out of bed and, without a thought, opened the Facebook notifications I’d accumulated overnight. Before I made coffee or brushed my teeth, I had checked my email, Instagram, and Twitter.

This is what people mean when they say that our generation is always online. It’s not something we can avoid, really; technology is woven into our lives. The question, then, is not if we should use the online world that is so readily available to us. The question is how should we use it?

It’s funny, but some of the best advice I ever heard about social media came from a tweet. Essentially, the author who posted it wanted to give a general reminder that it is your choice whether or not social media will be life-giving or life-taking. After reading that tweet, I became friends with the unfollow button. Before you can see the good in the world that comes from technology, you need to be comfortable with removing the not-so-good. This means not only unfollowing negative or unnecessary pages, but also learning to log off once in awhile.

It’s easy to welcome distractions into our lives, but there are still a lot of important things happening outside of our phones. It’s important to learn the discipline of leaving your phone in another room or turning it off sometimes so that you can really focus. Whether you’re working in an office, studying in your dorm room, or spending time with your family, there are some things in life that are better accomplished without a newsfeed in front of you.

The most important thing, the thing that allows us to use the internet for good, is remembering that behind every Twitter handle or Instagram name is a person. The power of social media is its ability to bring together individuals who otherwise would never have shared the same space. That’s a privilege, and we should honor it by speaking life and spreading messages of hope online.

There are a lot of ways to do that, and a lot of great people are using social media to do great things. Artists and writers have opportunities like never before to share their gifts with the world. News sources make it possible to be aware of what’s going on in the world and how you can affect change. On Instagram and Facebook, people’s stories are being told that otherwise would never have seen the light of day. Organizations are posting positive messages and spreading the word about causes that make the world better.

You can do that too.

Send an encouraging message.
Follow a cause you care about.
Put your phone away and have an unplugged conversation.
Clear your newsfeeds of negativity.
Share a story that’s important to you.

Today, Do One Thing to make technology a power for good in your life and in the world.

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I'm Alexa Jenkins, the Dot Social Media & Operations Intern!

 I'll be sharing on the blog for the next few weeks about different areas of life where we can Do One Thing to make the world a better place.
I think that small things like who we follow on Instagram and where we buy our coffee can have a big impact, and I hope these posts are an encouraging reminder that your choices are important. 

All Things Busy in the Dot World!

Hey friends! Hallie Darphin, Dot's Founder, here. 

We're getting settled into our new space in Clinton, and we've realized that we've been a little all over the place lately. A lot has happened, and we wanted to share all the pieces with you! We are so excited about the things that are going on here at Dot, and we see each one of you as a vital part of "Doing One Thing" to make a difference in the world. Here's a recap of our last month and a half! 

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1. Dot Products became a team of two (plus lots of wonderful Dot Interns, of course!) as Alana Nardini joined our team as the Operations Assistant! Alana is a new graduate of Millsaps College in Jackson, MS and has been an intern for the past year. I am so excited to have her on the team! She'll be helping to curate new items from local makers and social enterprises in the Dot Shop, answering your email questions, and bringing organization to our growing world!

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2. We said goodbye to our sweet first home at LifeHouse Mississippi in Jackson, MS. Through our time at LifeHouse, we grew and changed and learned. We will always be so thankful for our LifeHouse community and the friendships that we have there. Though we're no longer doing daily life in downtown Jackson, LifeHouse always have a part of our heart! 

3. We said hello to Clinton, MS and the beautiful new Dot Office and Shop on the Brickstreets! When we were looking for office space to fit, we wanted a place with a small retail area where we could share our favorite brands and makers with our local friends, and we found the PERFECT place in a beautiful 100 year old home that has been remodeled as an office. The front room is our retail space and the rest our offices. We've had so much fun curating a line of products from local artists and give-back brands that we think you will love, and we opened for business June 30th! 

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4. Then we got on a plane and traveled to Haiti to meet with our artisans and work in the schools!
Read more about our trip from team members on our blog posts here

Lauren Livingston

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5. One day home from Haiti and we welcomed our Summer Intern Team! Learn more about the interns by clicking on their pictures. These girls have been working hard and playing hard. 

And that's that! The past month or so has been the most wonderful blur, and we're so excited to settle down in Clinton and find our place on the Brickstreets. Now that we have a home to welcome you into, we'd love to see you come by and learn more about the ways you can "Do One Thing" to make a difference in the world. 

--Hallie and the Dot Team

  

Dot Team Talks Haiti

In dreaming up our Haiti trip, I (founder, Hallie Darphin) wanted to give college students and young professionals the opportunity to put their gifts and talents to use in Haiti, even if their gifts and talents aren't typically seen as being useful in the developing world. We believe in sharing stories in a way that compels students to action, and we enlisted student and adult educators and storytellers--photographers, videographers, writers, and dreamers--to help us do just that. 

Our trip to Haiti was full of seeing. We experienced new culture, food, schools, interactions with artisans and gifted makers. Like almost any similar trip, it was hard and good and beautiful and overwhelming, and each girl's perspective and actions made Dot better. I think it made each of us better. 

Of course, we can't explain every piece of what we did, but we can work to express the parts that were meaningful to each of us. Here's what Alana, Annie, and Grace thought. 

Alana: Haiti- What I Saw

Processing my trip from Haiti has been interesting for me. I can tell you all about what I saw, the information my eyes, and other senses gathered, but I cannot cohesively form conclusions about it. Haiti is such a complex place, there are a lot of moving parts in the machine that is Haiti, and I cannot pretend that a week of observation gives me the right to make any conclusions. I won’t try to analyze the information into a seven-point thesis that concludes in world peace. I can’t give you answers, but I can tell you what I saw.

I saw contrast.

I saw dark mahogany skin with gleaming white smiles.

I saw orange gingham uniforms well kept, but outgrown.

I saw a clean compound, kitchens kept clean and bathrooms swept and cleaned. I saw a Hope Center where cleanliness just as you and I would expect at our homes was kept and maintained by Haitian women.

I saw filthy streets where it appeared as if empty water bottles were the bricks and dirt was the mortar.

I saw pikles.
I saw spicy pikles. (Only some will appreciate this contrast.)

I saw women barely dressed, and I saw women who would feel immodest in anything but skirts.

I saw people fed up with a system that teaches in French, but doesn’t teach French.

I saw Haitian people who believed speaking French was a necessary divider; a skill used to separate one candidate from another, like a degree.

I saw children suffering from malnutrition.
I saw the biggest bowl of rice I have ever seen in my entire life.

I saw well-behaved three year olds sit still as food was passed out one by one.
I saw rowdy children who were almost never in class.
I saw teachers who were quick to discipline with a belt.
I saw translators who were quick to scoop a child into his lap.

I saw flirtatious men, who told me their unsavory thoughts with their eyes.
I saw sweet young boys, who told me the Creole names for plants and animals as we walked hand in hand back from their school.

I saw Haitian children afraid of white people.
I saw Haitian children who thought white people were like Santa Claus.

I saw joy.
I saw pain.

I saw people with questions.
I saw people trying to find answers.

I saw a lot to do.
I saw people doing a lot.

Annie: Final Thoughts

I went into this trip far more anxious than I'd like to admit. Two days before my flight, I cried in a Target parking lot, overwhelmed by the thought of tiny toothpastes and traveling with strangers.

Why had I even agreed to this entire enterprise? 

Way back in October or November, Hallie Darphin -- a girl I knew as the owner of Dot Products, thanks to my gig in retail -- emailed me, asking if I'd like to join her business on its first trip to Haiti, a trip designed to spread the word about the work Dot is doing, to interact with children and artists and to tell their stories well. 

This, I thought, I could do. This was a mission I believed I was actually semi-qualified for, no nursing or house-building required. (Because truly: No one wants me building their house, ever.)

Then weeks later, when I was having doubts about leaving the country without my husband, I went to email Hallie, to clarify some points, to maybe back out of the whole thing, when a quick Google mail search revealed: This girl I knew as the leader of Dot had actually been reading my now-defunct blog for years. I found comments she'd posted way back before I knew anyone was actually reading my words, and I thought: This girl is kindred. My words? They meant something to her. This Internet thing? Maybe it's not as terrible as we can sometimes make it. This trip? I can do it.

So on a bright and early Sunday morning in May, I prayed with Jordan in the somewhat sketchy terminal of the Tallahassee airport. He read to me from the Book of Common Prayer, and as I crossed the threshold of security, I felt an immediate peace. I was still meeting strangers in Miami, but the fear? It was gone. 

Once in Miami, I joined Hallie and the five other girls -- some from Dot, another, like me, from the weird world of the Internet -- and it clicked. Sure, all of the girls were several years my junior, but it didn't matter. Any anxiety I had disappeared then, too. We were just girls, ready to take pictures and tell stories and make a difference, even if it was as small as we are. 

Much of my original anxiety, I know, came from my seeming lack of missional experience. I had never traveled out of the country with a church group, didn't grow up going on mission trips to Mexico or Honduras or Belize. But I quickly realized my lack of experience didn't matter, should never have been a legitimate concern. My adult life has been a mission field: in the workplace, at the bookstore, in my small town. And the truth is, of course, that relationships and loving people, serving them, caring for them? That's about far more than geography. 

And so God used my age and my experience in ways I didn't anticipate. I was able to be calm, maybe wise. He used me in moments far beyond what I could have expected or imagined, and this "job" I took with The Bookshelf three years ago? It led me to Hallie, and to Haiti, and to a world so more vast than my eyes and my heart really ever knew. 

We fed children and took their pictures, met the artisans Hallie and Dot employ, helped develop new product and prepare Dot for its new retail space in downtown Clinton, Mississippi. As a small group of women, we prayed together and talked about entrepreneurship and life after college; I offered book recommendations and learned to be quiet again. 

The whole thing was, in some ways, easier than my day-to-day life as an entrepreneur. There was less worry, less maintenance, more accountability and more acceptance. There were no emails to check or social media accounts to manage. I was so far removed from the shop -- literally and electronically -- that I remembered just how small it is, just how insignificant some of my concerns can be. It was a lesson in pride, in my small-ness and the world's big-ness. It was a reminder of what I've been created to do, and why. 

I am not a young college student, still grappling with my life's choices and decisions. But I am a sometimes-floundering grownup, and Haiti -- with its bright colors and island breezes, its delicious food and oppressive heat -- was a reminder of what really matters. I breathed deeper and easier there, and in the weeks since I've been home, I've tried to remember what's really important and why. I'll owe Haiti that, I think, and I owe Hallie my gratitude for reaching out to a girl she met on the Internet, for taking a chance on my gifts and abilities and putting me to work. I couldn't be more grateful for her, or for what Dot is doing all over this big, big world. 

Grace- A Road Made of Rock

I didn’t know why God wanted me to go to Haiti until about three days into our trip. As our plane was landing in Port Au Prince, my eyes were continuously drawn to the rubble.  I had been to a developing nation before, and I had seen slums, but something about rubble made this experience new for me.  Our plane landed on a small piece of asphalt, and we loadedourselves off into the heat, the sweat, and the welcoming music of the Haitians.  Hearing the live music in the airport reminded me of standing in Jackson Square in New Orleans; it was comforting, and I felt like I had landed somewhere that I could stay.  After getting our bags, we made our way to a van that would transport us to The Hope Center.  As we drove through the city, I couldn’t help but feel comfortable.  I knew that I should feel a need to compare or a need to cry for these people, but that is not what I felt.  In fact, that is not what I felt the entire trip, and that is not what I feel now.  From the beautiful missionaries that we received the privilege of living with for a week to the children we got to measure for uniforms at the school to the amazing Haitians that translated for us, I was reminded that Haiti does not need my pity, and Haiti doesn’t even need me; Haiti doesn’t need any of us.  Haiti taught me to act instead of speak.  Haiti taught me that God doesn’t need me to impact the world, but he does need me to act.  He just needs willingness, and he will change the world.  The people of Haiti made me more willing than I have ever been in my life, and as we drove the 30 minute drive down the rock road that we had become all too familiar with, I couldn’t help but think, “I will be back.”       

 

Dot Goes to Haiti

Hello! I'm Claire - a summer intern for Dot this year! Before I "officially" started as a Dot intern, I had the chance to join  six wonderful ladies brought together through Dot on a missions trip to Haiti. If I’m just being honest, I had no idea where we were specifically going in Haiti or what we were going to be doing. What unfolded throughout our weeklong stay in Galette Chambon, Haiti at the But God Ministries compound left me excited, thankful and inspired. Here's a snippet of our time there!

The sun came up at 4:45 every morning (a complete and total JOY for me as early mornings are quite possibly my favorite things ever), and we spent the day at a school that BGM sponsors kids at gathering information about the kids for the sponsors, getting measurements for school uniforms and serving the kids lunch. My primary job while at the school was to walk around and take pictures and videos to document our work and the sweet kids. The little boys LOVED dancing around like little crazy people while I videoed them and then watching the video. The laughter that came from watching those silly videos will always be one of my favorite memories from the trip. 

Some (or most) afternoons we would nap, hang out, and complete various tasks. One afternoon we took a long walk through the village to see the houses that the Haitians live in. Their houses were small and extremely simple, but some had made their yard absolutely beautiful with gardens and flowers. All of the people in the village were so welcoming and kind as we walked around.

On Wednesday we took a day trip to Petionville, a city close to Port-au-Prince, to visit fabric stores to find possible options for fabric designs for future Dot products. We also took a detour to the Apparent Project to buy some souvenirs made by Haitians (and also eat some pizza, burgers, smoothies and use the Wi-Fi). 

Throughout the week we worked with Nathan and Ruth, two Haitians who make the Dot pencil bags and are going to be making more products for us in the future. Hallie had many opportunities to sit down with them and talk through the logistics of getting those new products made.  

 Nathan and his son in his home where he makes products for Dot.

Nathan and his son in his home where he makes products for Dot.

 From left to right: Nathan, Junior (translator), Ruth and Hallie

From left to right: Nathan, Junior (translator), Ruth and Hallie

 Hallie and Ruth

Hallie and Ruth

 Hallie and Nathan in a fabric store that we visited.

Hallie and Nathan in a fabric store that we visited.

On our last full day, Hallie and I visited Nathan’s house in the village to see the exact place where he has made all of Dot’s pencil bags thus far. This was a sweet moment for me. He has an old fashioned sewing machine in his home where he does all of his work with his wife and three adorable kids all in the same room. Seeing the people who are positively impacted by Dot, and realizing how Nathan can provide the most basic of needs for his family partly because of Dot, was so special and it made me just that much more excited to work for Dot this summer!

This trip was filled with absolutely amazing meals, many pieces of mango, lots of bug bites, too many granola bars, early mornings and early bedtimes, lovely moments with some of the sweetest kids there are, hot but beautiful walks to the school, a lot of hilarious conversations with us trying to speak Creole (and a lot of smiling and nodding), a lot of time staring at the beautiful mountains right in front of us, a few rides down the bumpiest road I’ve ever been on, and really awesome new friendships. God used this trip as a huge encouragement to me, and I think many of the other girls, too.

Now, I’m sitting here writing this in a room that is the size of an entire house in Haiti. My prayer is that I will not forget the people I met and the experiences I gained on this trip, and that I will continue to learn how to live in gratitude and humility. I hope you all have the opportunity to witness the beauty of the broken and God’s unwavering goodness in hardship like I did in Haiti.

Also, huge thanks to Tony and Mickie West and the rest of the BGM staff at Galette Chambon for hosting us, making us feel welcomed, and loving us so well while we were in Haiti. You, your family and your ministry will always be in my prayers. May God bless you for your willingness to live for Him and to love the Haitians in what only can be described as love fully empowered by the knowledge of God’s love for you. 

Photos by Claire Winesett

Claire is an upcoming senior at Mississippi State University from Denver, Colorado. She studies communication with a minor in Spanish and is pursing a certificate in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages). Claire loves early mornings, lots of coffee, traveling, and pizza of any kind.

Do One Thing: Spring Break Edition

Hey guys, Grace here!

Let’s be honest.  Spring Break is the best.  We love it because it comes exactly when we need it.  Our lives are chaotic, and we are desperate for a breather, and in comes our rescue: Spring Break.  All of this is great and very needed, but what if Spring Break could be a time used to cultivate instead of just chill?  What would that even look like?  Well, I think it can look different for everyone.

 

1. Home

This Spring Break, I will be heading home to Dallas to spend some much needed time with my family.  Often when I go home, I expect home and the people there to refuel and reenergize me.  I forget that others might also expect something from me.  Going home or being home for Spring Break is an opportunity for us to more than just relax, it is an opportunity for us to grow in our relationships with family. 

 

Want to “Do One Thing” while you’re home?  It’s pretty simple.  Love the people who love you.

How do we do this?  Cook dinner with your mom, catch a movie with your dad, grab coffee with your sister or just relax with you brother.  There’s no need to complicate the break, just be purposeful with your time and let your family know you actually want to be with them.

 

2. The Beach

Unlike me, some of you guys are doing really adventurous things for Spring Break!  In the past week, I have been overwhelmed with the number of people who have told me they are going to the beach.  I am trying not to be jealous.  I don’t know about you, but when I think about the beach, all I can imagine is relaxation.  I mean a majority of the time we spend at the beach is just lying around, but I think that it holds so much more potential than that.  When we go to the beach with friends, it is a huge bonding opportunity, but often we focus more on ourselves than we do on our friends.  Something about the beach just pushes us into a comatose stage of bliss, but what if we pulled ourselves out and used this beach trip to go deeper with friends?  One week can change an entire relationship. 

The “One Thing” to do at the beach isn’t get the best tan, but rather to be engaged with those who are there with us.

How can we be more engaged with our friends?  Ask yourself if you really know the people around you.  I don’t mean just know the facts about them, but do you know how they’re struggling, how they’re growing, or how you can help them?  If you don’t, use the beach as your time to ask more questions than you ever have.  The result?  You will love them better.

 

3. The Mountains

Something about the mountains always brings me back down to earth.  They are a reminder to us that we have been given this amazing thing, and now we have to figure out how we are going to play a part in taking care of it.  Spring Break in the mountains is probably my favorite, but it also stings a little bit.  Why? Because I remember that as big and immovable this world is, everyday we do things that impact it positively or negatively.  

If you’re going to the mountains for Spring Break, let the mountains remind you of how small you are, but also let them remind you of what difference your small self can make.

What does this mean when we go home?  It means we are smart with our resources.  This is what Dot is all about.  Think before you buy, and do some research.  If we all do this together, we can make a huge impact!

 

4. The City

From Dallas to New York to San Francisco to Portland, tons of people will be heading to really cool cities over Spring Break!  Cities are awesome.  They have so many options of what to do.  Food, music, art, and culture, they’ve got it all.  Cities also have so much need.  From the homeless to the refugees to the orphans, cities are home to some of the most broken in our society. 

If you’re going to a city this Spring Break challenge yourself to not just go to get something from the city, but go to give something back to it.  

Here are some organizations that can help you give back:

http://www.salvationarmyusa.org

http://www.habitat.org

http://www.cancer.org

http://www.rmhc.org


Breaks are awesome.  They are just what they sound like.  They let us take a break, but what if instead of taking a break from something, we took a break to do something.  Push yourself this Spring Break, and just “Do One Thing.”    


--For those of you heading on mission this Spring Break, let us know how we can help you or be praying for you!  Dot is so joyful to celebrate how each of you will be used this break!  Let us know all of the cool things that happen while you’re away!



The Yellow Fireplace

 Hallie in front of the yellow fireplace. 

            I walked into the room, and the first thing I noticed was the yellow fireplace.  In a room full of white, it stood out.  Something about it spoke to me.  I knew it was important, but I didn’t yet know why.  I couldn’t decide if it reminded me of something from the past or if it just appealed to my senses.  Looking back, I realize that it is what made me know I would be at home at Dot and with Hallie. 

            Hallie and I sat down to have our own version of an interview; which means we talked about life for two hours.  When we sat down, I told her that I love the fireplace, and she proceeded to tell me the story of the room where we sat. 

            When Hallie first came to tour LifeHouse, it was a mess.  Actually, it was falling apart.  The house was undergoing renovations and was definitely a work in progress.  As she toured through, not knowing that one-day she would be working here, each room seemed to be just like any other.  “I’ve always been a little dramatic, so I asked God to give me a sign if this is where I should be,” said Hallie in reference to that first walkthrough. 

            When she walked up the stairs, she saw three different rooms that were all similar, but as she walked in the last one, she noticed something special: a yellow fireplace.  Yellow had always been special to Hallie.  Since she was a little girl, it has been her favorite color and a sign of good things.  This was the sign she had been seeking.  She noted that this was the room where she would like to see her business thrive.  This was the room where God could take Dot from a college kid with a dream to a faithful woman with a purpose, and that is exactly what He did.

            On January 11, 2015 Halle moved into LifeHouse.  She moved into the very room where she imagined her life changing.  She moved into the room with the yellow fireplace.

            One full year later, I am sitting on the floor of this room, next to the yellow fireplace, looking up at Hallie, and I am amazed.  This yellow fireplace evolved from a beacon shining in a big mess, to a symbol of God’s provision for Dot.  It represents this crazy story of what happens when one girl has faith in one God, and the two do amazing things together. 

            The yellow fireplace is a story of providence.  It is the story of Dot and the story of Hallie, and now, the yellow fireplace is a part of my story too.   

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--Grace Jones, 2016 School Year Intern 

Welcome Grace Jones to the Dot Intern Team!

As you probably know, we're obsessed with our Intern Team. These girls bring life and light to Dot World and make so much of what we do possible. All that said, we are so excited to introduce you to the newest member of the Dot Intern Team! 

Meet Grace Jones:  She's from Dallas, TX and is currently a junior at Mississippi College. She is majoring in Interpersonal Communications, and her minor is English Literature. With this new semester, a new exciting thing is happening in her life in the form of Dot!  She is joining the team as an intern to help with events, campaigns, and blogging!  She loves color, glitter, and polka dots, so she is going to fit right in!  .  She loves to rock climb with her siblings after lunch at a Vietnamese café in Dallas.     

We are so excited to have Grace with us this semester. Say hey to her on Instagram at @GraceCarJo!

Kendall's Intern Project: Hand-Painted Journals

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One of the most rewarding parts of working at Dot is the opportunity Hallie gives every intern to design their own product. In doing so, we are encouraged to practice independence and humility, learning to accept help where it's needed while still completing a huge task on our own. As a social media intern, this seemed daunting to me- with Dot, I live in the world of Instagram; how was I expected to design and produce an entire project?

I knew from the beginning that I wanted my project to involve our craft paper journals. They're easily my favorite product, and journaling is a long-time habit of mine. I also didn't want to leave Instagram out of the equation; as superficial as social media can be, it is an incredible place to discover new people and small businesses. But where did that leave me? Journals plus Instagram still didn't seem to add up to anything too product-like.

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Eventually, I decided to make a product that would involve reaching out to independent artists to paint one-of-a-kind journals. Hallie and I decided it would be best for the first batch of these journals to be through someone I know, and lucky for me, I know some incredibly talented people. The first person to come to mind was a girl I know named Kacy- take a look at @_kacybeck or @kacybeckdesign on Instagram, and you'll immediately understand why. Her art is breathtaking. After one short Instagram DM, Kacy was ready to help us change the lives of children abroad with her art.

After a few emails were exchanged, the Dot office said goodbye to a box full of blank journals waiting to be painted. When we shipped those journals out, we had no idea that our expectations would be blown out of the water by Kacy’s talents. They are stunning. Just before our office’s holiday break, we received the journals back from Kacy, and finally, they're for sale! These journals are the first batch of our new line of one-of-a-kind journals from independent artists that can only be purchased from DotWorking with artists outside of the Dot office has been a beautiful display of how social media can foster great things, and I couldn't be happier with the journals that represent the time I've spent on this project.

Kendall Hardy
Millsaps College Sophomore
Dot Products Social Media Intern

Dot Products Holiday Gift Guide

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We gave our sweet and sassy intern, Katie, the challenge of putting together an awesome, ethical, and fun Holiday Gift Guide for the female college student, and we are thrilled with what she came up with!

With no further ado, here you are: 

The Dot Products Holiday Gift Guide!

Anytime is Coffee (and Tea!) Time

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1. TOMS :: Instead of filling your mug with a normal roast, try TOMS Honduran Coffee? Each bag purchased provides clean drinking water to a person in need.

2. Azulina :: Sit down for your morning cup of Joe with this beautiful mug handpainted by Azulina artisans. Azulina ceramics are made in Columbia and provide jobs to talented men and women across the country.

3. Thistle Farms :: Perfect for the college girl on the go, the Thistle Farms Tea Kit contains everything necessary for your daily hot tea fix. Each kit is packed with 12 servings of tea, 10 honey sticks, a spoon, and paper strainers all wrapped up in a beautiful Kenyan satchel.

Wish Your Friends A Merry Christmas

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4. Thimblepress :: Send Christmas greetings to your friends and loved ones from your hometown (or state) this year. Thimblepress is a locally owned Jackson, MS business, and we continue to be impressed with their creative cards for every occasion! 

Treat Yo' Self

5. Kurandza :: This beautiful hot pink tote bag is the perfect travel companion, whether you're going across your campus or across the country. With leather straps and inside pockets, this bag is handmade and provides employment to women artisans in Mozambique. 

6. Paisley and Sparrow :: This on-trend and fun accessory is the perfect piece for any outfit, day or night. Each Paisley and Sparrow piece has a purpose, and these provide employment for women overcoming addiction in Nashville, Tennessee. 

7. Della :: Carry your computer wherever you need it with this beautiful Della laptop case. Find this case and other similar styles on their website. 

Cozy Up To Christmas

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8. Prosperity Candle :: Shine bright this holiday season with a Prosperity Candle! Choose your container and scent to develop a candle perfect for your home or dorm. Prosperity Candles provide work to recently settled refugees from around the world!

9. Thimblepress :: Thimblepress isn't just print items. They also have fun pillows and home accessories! 

10. Dignify :: Cuddle up with a book and your cozy Kantha quilt from Dignify. These quilts are handcrafted by talented artisans in Bangladesh and provide jobs and a way out of sex-trafficking for many women in the area. Hold a piece of world-change with each blanket you buy!

And of course, a set of Dot Products for every stocking in your home!

We've got some fun discounts for your holiday shopping. Thanks so much for helping us be #schoolsupplieschanginglives!

20% off all orders using "ShopOnline"

or

Free Shipping on orders over $50 using "GiveTwice"

Discount codes work through December 1st!

Southern Living 2015 Holiday Gift Guide

Southern Living is the quintessential representation of the beauty it is to be southern, and we are so honored to have our Dot Products Colored Pencil Set featured in their Holiday Gift Guide this Christmas season! 

With every colored pencil set we sell, we're helping students around the world pursue bright futures through education! Pick up this month's magazine wherever magazines are sold, and find us on page 104! 

Looking for stocking stuffers? We love the list SL put together for every person on your list. 

Thanks so much for sharing the Dot Story with your world, Southern Living! We are so honored!

--Hallie and the Dot Team

Raise All The Money. Do All The Good.

The best part of running a company like Dot is being able to connect with so many world-changing ladies around the world. Right now, three of our favorite organizations are running crowdfunding campaigns to move forward in making their dreams happen! Between these three campaigns, you have the chance to be involved in caring for orphans and providing jobs for single moms and artisans in four countries! It's such a fun time to be in the social enterprise world.

Check out each campaign by clicking on the organization's name!

Hands Producing Hope

Our friends at Hands Producing Hope have been working with a group of artisans in Costa Rica for more than two years, and now they're expanding their operations to Rwanda! Help them reach their goals by donating to their IndieGoGo campaign today. Perks include our first-ever customized Dot Journal, available only on the crowdfunding campaign! 

Glorious Orphan Care

Glorious Orphan Care are our Global Partners in Tanzania. After a local children's home shut down, they've taken in a group of orphans and are now working to raise the finances to provide long-term care for these children. We love Glorious and are so thankful for the way they tirelessly care for the children of Arusha, Tanzania! Donate on their Classy Campaign today!

SoloHope

SoloHope works with a group of artisans in Honduras and has just recently began providing violence prevention courses in Honduras. An anonymous donor is matching up to $2,500 that is given between now and October 1st, so they have the chance to turn $2,500 to $5,000, an awesome gift for SoloHope founder, Emilee Connell's Birthday! Give TODAY on their IndieGoGo campaign!

Welcome New Interns!

Happy Fall, y'all! Hallie here, Dot's Founder and CEO. I'm so excited to introduce y'all to our newest intern class! We're doing things a little differently around here this year, so these girls will be with us all year. This way, they get the chance to really see the way all the pieces of Dot fit together throughout an entire year! I'm so excited about this group of girls, and hope you enjoy getting to know them a little better through this blog. Jackson friends, stop by the office and meet them sometime soon!

Meet Katie Morehead, our Operations Intern! She is a sophomore at Mississippi College, majoring in Accounting and is a member of Nenamoosha Social Tribe (MC's version of a sorority). This summer, Katie studied abroad in Spain where she learned Spanish and lived with 12 other students from around the world! Katie can recite the alphabet backwards, and she hates Mac and Cheese (something that we're learning to forgive her for ;]). A few of her favorite things include lasagna, the movie “A Knight’s Tale”, and free T-shirts. We are so excited to have Katie on our team this school year!

Meet Tatum Rosenbaum, one of our Global Partnerships and Events Interns. She is a senior at Mississippi College where she is majoring in Communications. She is obsessed with hedgehogs and loves showing off the multiple Instagram accounts she follows that are dedicated to them. Tatum is up for almost anything and loves to learn about new parts of the country or the world whenever she can! We are so excited to have Tatum on our team this school year!

Meet Kendall Hardy, our Social Media and Communications Intern! She is a sophomore at Millsaps College, where she is studying Communications. A Texas native, Kendall adores her home city of San Antonio and everything that comes with it, even the 105 degree summers! The best thing about her hometown is that her parents and five siblings live there--except her older sister who is also a Millsaps student! Kendall loves exploring new places, even when they're just down the road. She loves simple styles, all things handmade, and Ted Talks, so we think she'll get along just fine at the Dot Office! We are so excited to have Kendall on our team this school year!

Meet Alana Nardini, our other Global Partnerships and Events Intern! She is a senior at Millsaps College where she is majoring in European Studies. She is a fantastic baker and a big foodie and loves a swanky dinner as much as a late night run to Waffle House with her sorority sisters. This summer she studied abroad in France, and her sweet mom joined her for a few days in Paris, as seen in the picture above! In first grade, she broke her elbow, and the doctor thought her lower arm might not grow anymore. Don't worry though, it did! We are so excited to have Alana on our team this school year!


We're so excited about some brand new projects they'll be helping us to implement this school year. Stay tuned for more great things from this world-changing group of ladies!

--Hallie