Ethiopia, here I come! {Giveaway!}

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I've had a serious "thing" for Africa for as long as I can remember. I'm absolutely fascinated with the country, the people, the culture, the animals, basically everything about it. I've been wanting to visit for years and for a while, when I was still doing the whole pre-med thing in college, I was toying with the idea of living there for a few months and volunteering at a clinic. I literally just can't get Africa out of my head. My mom even lived in South Africa for a while when she was in high school and has yet to take me back to any of her reunions. Rude. Just kidding mom, I know you'll take me next year 🙂

I think you get the picture. I just feel this strong connection to Africa and I'd love to visit and learn.  This dream became a reality when I met Barrett a few months ago at Big Traveling Potluck when he invited me to come on a trip to Ethiopia, I literally freaked out and signed myself up on the spot .

{Fast forward a few months....}


In less than a week (we leave on Friday),  I'll be hitting the skies and flying over to Ethiopia with a few other fantastic bloggers, Mocha Club and fashionABLE to kick start our blogABLE trip!

So what on earth am I doing there? For starters I'm there to learn, to share, to help and then bring back all these amazing  stories and spread the word! Here's the deal....

About Mocha Club:
Mocha Club is a community giving up the cost of a few mochas a month to fund development projects in Africa. Committed to locally developed projects where the community identifies the needs and the response, Mocha Club’s end goal is to always create real, sustainable solutions. They work in 5 main project areas: Clean Water, Healthcare, Orphan Care, Education, & Economic Freedom.

About fashionABLE:
The fashionABLE mission is to create sustainable business for Africans so they aren't dependent upon charity, but instead earn the dignity of a job. Born out of Mocha Club’s Economic Freedom project, they offer opportunity to everyone, with a primary focus on empowering women. When fashionABLE invests in a woman, statistics demonstrate that she will have a life changing impact on her family and community… and herself. fashionABLE provides sustainable business opportunities, like making these amazing scarves, to exploited and vulnerable women in Africa.

About blogABLE:
blogABLE is a collaborative effort of fashionABLE and the Mocha Club to take a group of bloggers to see their work in Ethiopia. In early august, the team will travel to Addis Ababa and Nazaret, Ethiopia to spend time with the women both companies work with. Lacking meaningful resources and a sense of hope, many women in Ethiopia resort to prostitution as a means of supporting themselves & their families. They are often desperate to leave the sex industry but remain trapped by a lack of opportunity and rehabilitative support. Through our visits and storytelling, we hope to engage and educate our followers on what is being done to bring hope through creating jobs and sustainable business here.

It's going to be a pretty life changing experience and I can't wait to come back and share all the stories from the women we meet in Ethiopia.

So, with all that said, I'm pumped. Pumped actually doesn't even begin to describe it. I literally cannot even wait to get over there and learn. And what's a trip without a healthy dose of sharing on social media? You guys can follow along on instagram, facebook and twitter!  I'll do my best to post as many updates as I can on the blog in my free time. Woot woot, Africa here I come!


In honor of traveling to see the work first-hand, I'm giving away 2 amazing fashionABLE products (both made by the women I'm about to meet!): the Meseret scarf (perfect for these warmer months - I'm obsessed with every scarf but this one is particularly amazing) and the brand new Tigist leather clutch! One lucky winner will get both products!!

Congratulations to Kate on winning the scarf and the clutch 🙂

blogABLE giveaway items

Here's how to enter:



  1. Congrats, I hope your trip is everything you want it to be. One thing to keep in mind, though- I hate to be a stickler for details, and I'm sure it was just an oversight in the 2nd sentence- but Africa is a continent, not a country. Safe travels!

  2. Have a wonderful trip! Just found your blog and loved your recipe for the roasted red pepper pasta we had for dinner tonight. Travel tips...bring a little pack of tissues (or three) for TP shortages, ear plugs, socks for the plane, a big light shawl to use for just about anything - scarf, light wrap, blanket. I'm following everything. Thanks!

    1. Thanks Heather 🙂 And I'm so glad you loved the red pepper pasta - it's one of my favorites!!

  3. Done!
    There's always a time when I'm traveling where I get a little homesick and a little exhausted from new surroundings. My tip is that when this happens, I think about how much I was looking forward to the trip and planning for it. It will be over in a blink so enjoy the present. 🙂

  4. I always make sure to pack at least one thing with me that makes me feel cozy and at home. if I have room for a pillow, I bring mine. if I have limited space, my favourite travel-sized candle. you know, for the nights when you just want your own bed. 🙂

    [i followed everyone everywhere!]

  5. Just wanted to mention to all those clothes rollers out there that there's a technique we use in the Army called "ranger rolling." You can see a video about rolling a t-shirt here:

    When I pack up my deployment bag or duffle, I also throw these items into gallon sized freezer bags and squeeze out the air. It's a great space-saver and helps keep things organized. You can separate things into outfits that way and quickly grab each outfit.

  6. Gaby, I love that you are doing this trip, what an experience. I have been looking for something such as this where I could feel like I am giving back. My god-daughter's brother did a project at school with KIVA last year, and it made such an impact on him. It was amazing to see the excitement he got from helping a woman in need. Definitely heading over to follow the group - cannot wait to see your posts!

  7. I'm following all on Twitter. My best tips: Bring the inflatable neck pillow and a good book to get you through the flight, and then be prepared to go with the flow...this is Africa. Don't take more than you can carry on - you can always do laundry along the way. If you do check luggage, do not leave any electronics in your bag, and a lock is not a bad idea.

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