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Monica Ostby, President of Featured on Smartgirlsway!

by inlu blog patrol on December 1, 2011

Bio & Company Story:

Inlu Co-Founder, Jamaica Jenkins and I, both mothers of three, saw first hand how our beloved cultural celebrations not only have a negative environmental impact, but also miss out on technological advances that make life easier to organize. So, “in lieu of” excess, hassle, and waste, we created, an online web invitation service with a built in group giving system. Inlu enables friends and family to easily pitch in for what is truly wanted as a group – toward ANY gift, ANY charity, or BOTH – and streamline the process for everyone. We’ve also tied in a patent-pending carbon footprint tracker that demonstrates the positive impact of giving as a group.

Today, Inlu helps people organize group gifting across many occasions, from birthdays to weddings, to non-profit fund drives. Since launching, over 100 different charities have been supported – some multiple times. And unique gifts have been given: from birthday skateboards, to newlywed first home deposits, and growing family double strollers, to a wheelchair ramp for a neighbor in need.

We have seen our early adapters embrace this easy to use tool – with over 20% having used Inlu more than three times in the short time we have been live. One Inlu enthusiasts has already participated in over 25 Inlu collections. We hope to see the word about Inlu spread, so that everyone can experience the joy of our celebrations, without the hassle, excess, and waste that we all agree we can do without.

To read the entire page and view other 100×100 entrepreneurs (like our friend, Janice Shade of TrueBody Products), click to visit

Click to visit Smartgirlsway.


4 Ways to Handle Inlu Gift Collection Funds

by inlu blog patrol on November 10, 2011

how inlu works

We like chatting about all the fabulous ways to spend final gift collection funds. Today, we want to focus on the four main ways Inlu Gift Collection funds are pooled and sent.

(As the Gift Collection Organizer, you can choose how to handle your Gift Collection Funds)…

1. Consolidate and Send

Simply coordinate the collection and indicate that Inlu SEND the consolidated funds to someone. This can be the person or purpose being honored, or another person who will purchase a gift for the person being honored. You don’t know what the final collection total will be until your Inlu closes. This is perfect for gift certificate type giving – where the final amount is less important than the gift itself.

2. Purchase Ahead of Time, Reimburse Your Wallet

Consider the consolidated funds to be a REIMBURSEMENT to you. If you want to pre-purchase a gift for someone (for example, a new bike), and you want whatever donated funds to go toward that gift, then consider those funds to be a reimbursement back to you. This is helpful for things like birthdays when you want a specific item to be ‘opened’ at the party. Buy it whenever you want. And know that the collected funds will find their way back to you after your collection closes. The collection might not meet your total cost.

3. Many Honorees, One Contribution (Alternative Reimbursement)

IF a you are coordinating a SINGLE Inlu meant for MULTIPLE HONOREES (ie, 3 COACHES GIFTS, 1 contribution PER family), it is best to use the Inlu as a REIMBURSEMENT to you. The Inlu system enables you to list ONE person and address to which all funds can be issued. You can see the final amount collected on the day of your Collection End Date, divide that amount as you see fit, and purchase multiple items (like individual gift certificates) yourself. For example, if you collect $90 you can purchase 3 $30 gift certificates. Use the Inlu funds to reimburse yourself.

4. Direct-to-Store Group Gift Certificate

Purchase a single GROUP GIFT CERTIFICATE from our growing list of partners. In this case, the gift funds are sent directly to the shop and held as a gift certificate in your honoree’s name. The Inlu system issues a gift certificate announcement to the person being honored with the messages from all who contributed, as well as their group gift certificate number registered with that store. Nice and easy!

Know an awesome little local shop that should become a partner? Lets us know! Businesses LOVE when their own customers refer Team Inlu. You will help an awesome local business compete with ‘the big guys’ when they become a partner. —> Email us!


Featured Inlu: BTV Skate Park- Buy a Brick!

by inlu blog patrol on December 15, 2010

Hey friends! Guess what cool Inlu collection is going on right now? The “Buy a Brick and Support the Skate Park” campaign just launched as part of the Burlington Skate Park Redevelopment Project.

This much anticipated, NEW concrete park will attract skaters from all around the region. Anyone is welcome to contribute and no amount is too small. If you’re looking for a creative gift idea, any $50 contribution will “buy” an engraved clay brick to be built into the skatepark wall!

These $50 donation brick purchases (tax deductable!) include a certificate in the name of the honoree. What a GREAT ‘less mess, more love’ gift idea—perfect for a child, teacher, friend, or skateboarder. PLUS, it’s enjoyable for the entire community to share. So, before you head to the mall, why not think about this alternative gift idea? We think it’s awesome and we wish the skate park development posse all the best of luck.

Inlu / SkateVT.ORG

Click to read the entire INLU


Say What? Happy ONE-YEAR Anniversary!

by inlu blog patrol on September 15, 2010

What a great year! We’d like to take a moment to virtually bust out the megahorn and thank everyone and anyone (including our kids and pets) who supported the Inlu vision.


As a small start-up team, we honestly wish we could:

Give a thumbs-up to the trailblazers who coordinated an event or collection. Shake hands with every contributor. High five every person who left a contribution note. And hug everyone who told a friend to check us out (well, everyone except Jamaica, she’s not a hugger).

Anyway, where were we?

We’d say cheers to our artists. Head nod our mentors and of course, throw a party for our fans and professional friends. But, as you can see, that’s just not possible! But please know we’re throwing the thank-you vibes your way.

What we can do, is list some amazing examples of how people have used Inlu to host parties, coordinate events and reduce excess.

In our first year, we’ve seen people coordinate Inlus for:

Together, Inlu users have supported over 90+ favorite causes (many repeats!) and Inlu has donated to plant 50 trees so far (via American Forests).

AND they’ve simplified and streamlined  collections for some awesome gifts, like:

  • Legos & Dollhouses
  • Kid & Mom Bikes
  • iPads & Smart Pens

And we respectfully thank those who memorialized their loved ones with meaningful remembrances.

From all of us at Inlu HQ, we’d like to say HAPPY 1-YEAR TO YOU ALL!

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Hollywood hooks INLU up again!

by inlu blog patrol on August 13, 2010

This May, ladies across the country used Inlu to throw Movie Parties For A Cause. Basically, gals set off to see SATC2 with friends and raise funds for charities in need. They had fun while giving back.

Well GREAT NEWS  GUYS! Inlu is proud to announce another Inlu Hollywood hookup: LIONSGATE FILMS gave Inlu & its fantastically fun fans image rights usage for Inlu Invitations– check out the EXPENDABLES IMAGE (below) for Movie Parties for a Cause.

That’s a big thumbs up!

So, get your buds together and go see The Expendables, and raise money for something good.  See this sample, and you can use The Expendables image right in your Inlu -



Fun. Good. Cool.  Because with Inlu… DUDES CAN  TOO!


inlu, spelled correctly. HUMOR POST…because we need it.

by inlu blog patrol on June 23, 2010

It’s late night. It’s muggy. It’s necessary.


Ok, we’ll admit…we’re HOOKED on  google’s /SEARCHSTORIES. This is a SPOOF on the SPELLING of our name: INLU in lieu of… (increase screen size to see the search story most clearly:).

DANG IT!!! lol…


If you want more inlu FUN — CLICK HERE.



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Collect Funds for Teacher and Coach Gifts, QUICKLY & EASILY!

June 6, 2010

Oh, the end of the school year. For BUSY BODIES and MULTI-TASKING moms & dads, the calendars are FULL and that classroom teacher gift or coach gift (or both) are hovering on the mind. We have a solution! Simply create an INLU and blast it to your classroom list REQUESTING CONTRIBUTIONS FOR A TEACHER OR [...]

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SATC2: Inlu News Alert…Suburban Style

June 2, 2010

Well, this week we had the chance to get out some heels and attend a SATC2 GNO with the Lovely Ladies of Suburbia. In fact, a mysterious low budget news team was there to capture the event. If you know us, you’ll know we’re joking…KIND OF. Perhaps the next time we’re on the scene, we’ll [...]

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10 Reasons INLU Loves Sarah Jessica Parker & ALL the SATC2 Ladies

May 14, 2010

10.  ADIOS,  Shoulder Pads. The SATC2 ladies have forever INSPIRED professional women from the constraints of blah, “meh” zzzz…OFFICE attire. Monica would like to personally thank them for removing the shoulder pad pressure. Although, we all know, deep down, Monica misses her shoulder pads…but actually, we’ve noticed…they’re back. But we won’t let her know 9. [...]

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Fans and friends, LOOK what YOU did!

November 5, 2009

With the GIFT collection cash (over $300!), we purchased, on behalf of contributors, blankets, sheets and fuzzy microfleece throws for families in need of extra warmth this upcoming winter. The ladies and gentleman in the Lund Office were more than welcoming– we rolled in (nearly unannounced) with a heaping pile of cozy goodies. When we [...]

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