June 22, 2015

The True Meaning of Success: The Life Outside the Box Book Review

The True Meaning of Success via Collecting Moments Blog

The measure of success varies for most. For some, it’s money or accolades that are a benchmark, for others it’s simple joy or contentment that signifies triumph. Whatever it may be, whether you’re an entrepreneur or a stay-at-home mom, success is something everyone strives to achieve.

And much like its measure, the path to success is also differs for everyone. Some stumble upon it, while others work their way through countless hardships before reaping the benefits. For me, the fascination lies with the stories of the latter—about those who struggle and beat the odds to find their little slice of success.

Ms. Wilson digs deep into the root of success with her collection of stories. Using the extraordinary experiences of 10 unique individuals, she shows readers that success is never just about notoriety or the bottom line of a bank account. Tracing each person’s journey from conception, pitfalls, errors, and eventual achievement and triumph, her words offer much more than just biographies for the reader. Instead, Wilson focuses on why these people are successful and NOT what made them so. With these stories, it’s evident that Ms. Wilson wanted to inspire and motivate, not just inform and entertain.

As I read the book, equally enraptured by each journey Ms. Wilson takes me through, a consistent theme started to emerge. All of these prominent figures, from publishing executive Julie Salisbury to poet, Shane Koyczan, prove that success is not easy for anyone. It takes persistence and hard work; that reinvention, transformation, and purpose are the backbones of an extraordinary achievement. That success means the refusal to conform to the path that was laid for you. As a person who consistently works to be better at what she does—whether its motherhood or writing—this running theme spoke great volumes to me, something now continually keep in mind daily.

For those looking for an inspirational piece or simply a great read for the summer, I highly recommend  Life Outside the Box. It’s changed so much about my day-to-day thinking and reinvigorated my strive to become better at what I do. It’s taught me that everything I do must have a purpose, and that the word “no” is not a means to an end, but an encouragement to try a different avenue. It’s eye opening, encouraging, and definitely worth the read.

June 2, 2015

A New Way to Read Children's Books

At the tender age of one, my daughter is starting to show great interest in reading. It’s a task she does every chance she gets—whether its after lunch, or during bedtime, Little Lady loves the whole concept of a story and the pictures that go along with it.

That’s why I was so excited when Crayon Crunch approached me with their idea for children’s books. Their philosophy was simple: every kid deserves an adventure. So, with the brilliant minds of Tim Osterbuhr, Kai Schmittat and Friederike Geiken , they were able to launch a concept for a customizable printed children’s book unlike any other.

While some companies limit character customization to just a child’s name, Crayon Crunch’s concept goes a bit further, allowing all features of the main character to be completely customizable. That means your child can quite literally place themselves in his/her very own fictional adventure!

From hair color, to eyes, clothing, skin tone, Crayon Crunch’s marries innovative technology with traditional picture books, through its intricate and unique process. Through an image matching algorithm, readers will able to match the exact features of their child with a click of a button and flick of a mouse. In fact, their in-house technology even allows options for special needs such as glasses and wheelchair, and limb differences. These further highlights their philosophy of EVERY child deserves an adventure. In addition, it also promotes, not only the importance of reading, but also a much-needed diversity in modern children’s literature.

The plot is a mixture of excitement and endearment. In it, your child finds a box with a lock shaped with his first initial. To unlock it, he/she must go on a quest to find the key that matches the lock. Along the way, he meets more characters to help on his quest. The contents of the box won’t be visible until the very end: when the main character finds a letter written to him/her from one of the family members who’s purchased the book.

With all this innovation and promise of a new era in children's book printing, I'm proud to announce that Crayon Crunch has launched a Kickstarter to promote and fund their venture, and your support is very much appreciated. Your child's well-deserved adventure awaits!

Note: Collecting Moments was not financially compensated for this post nor will I be receiving any commission from their campaign. Rest assured, all your support will fund Crayon Crunch’s effort 100%.
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