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Showing posts from November, 2013

Something to think about while you're making your Christmas list.......

So I had big intentions of blogging every day of November, sharing 30 days of gifts. My hope was to share a few Christmas crafts but mostly I wanted to share information regarding organizations which work towards ending oppression, poverty, hunger and the like. My hope was to encourage you (and me) to spend our Christmas money in a way which would help others.  

But God had other plans, quieting me a bit and using that time to teach me. I'm learning to COMPLETELY lean on Him. I'm learning to give Him my every dream and trusting His plan for my future. It's been a beautiful month. 

Maybe I can still accomplish my goal of 30 gifts in November. We'll see. Meanwhile I will share a few - in no particular order and a few which I've shared previously. :)



1. Love 146 - Organization working to end child trafficking and exploitation

2. Eden Minstry ~ Jewelry
"the journey of hope continues for women who have escaped trafficking and prostitution in Asia."  I wrote a litt…

Lessons in Compassion

I enlisted the help of my daycare families to bring items to fill our "Christmas for an Orphan" boxes. The needs were simple. Band-Aids, pencils, markers, crayons, toothbrush and toothpaste, stuffed animals, matchbox cars, etc. 

Yesterday the kids and I organized...........ok, I organized the boxes then the kids rifled through the boxes to see what goodies we were sending (while they did this I talked to the children about the items and how they would be used by the orphans that we were sending them to) and then I reorganized the boxes so that everything would fit! The kiddos were very excited about the gifts that we were sending but were even more excited about the children in whom we were sending the gifts to! 

Laurie's Little Sprouts, the name of my daycare, sponsors a Guatemalan girl, Karina,through World Help (the same organization that does Christmas for an Orphan). The Little Sprouts and I talk about Karina everyday! We have a picture of her hanging in the dining ro…

Faith {the gift of God's faithfulness}

Today my heart is overflowing with gratitude. Last week I wrote a post about my dreams, my worries, my faith (or lack thereof). In writing that post, a post that I had no intention of writing, God spoke to me. He clearly pointed out my lack of faith and reminded me of how faithful HE is! My attitude changed and I'm seeing His hand orchestrate something very beautiful.

I got over my pity party, gave my dreams...and worries to Him and got busy. :) I looked around the house for income generating ideas. I re-posted a few of items on a local Facebook "for sale" site, items which I had posted several times over the past 5 months. All were sold within an hour! And yesterday I was blown away. I had a book that was in excellent condition so I decided to try selling it on Amazon. After listing my item I noticed that there was over 200 other people listing the same book! I almost deleted my listing. 24 hours after listing my book sold!

With things I had on hand I began crafting, maki…

Feeding the Hungry {the gift of food}

Last week's menu was focused on vegetables as my children and I did a 7 day cleanse. We started on Monday. Monday and Tuesday were filled with a lot of "what can I make??" By Wednesday I was savoring the the vegetables. Sauteed, raw, combinations that I've never tried. I loved getting creative with my food. 
In photo collage:
Top left ~ smashing up an avocado for a concoction that I used as dressing (pictured in the middle).
1 avocado, juice of half a lime, a sprinkling of ACV, a few grinds of pepper, and a bit of Wildtree Garlic Grapeseed Oil. Next time I may leave out the lime...the dressing was a little "mouth puckering".  Photo in top right shows me mixing my homemade dressing with the veggies that I added to a salad (organic spring mix).

Top Middle ~ making Tabouli in one bowl and in the other bowl is the chopped cucumbers, tomatoes and avocado to add to a lettuce salad. I decided I liked topping my salad with tabouli (pictured in bottom right). YUM!

TABOUL…

Truth

I'm linking up tonight with Lisa-Jo for Five Minute Friday. The prompt word is truth......

And before I reveal my "truth" I should share a couple of other truths with you. First, I had intended to write something completely different. In fact I wasn't even going to join the FMF party. But God took over so here I am. Also, I started writing and couldn't stop after my five minutes where up (plus my boy wanted me to make him a couple of eggs so I got interrupted half way through). So my five minutes was more like 10. Or 15. Give or take. 

The truth?

I've been stressed. I've forgotten to completely lean on God. I've forgotten how He has proven to be faithful to me over and over again. The right words come out of my mouth but somewhere along the way my mind become too overwhelmed. Stress and worry replaced faith.

Three weeks ago my boy had knee surgery and all I could think of was how I would pay that bill. And he needs to go to the dentist but that has to wai…

Handmade Gifts ~ Candles

Yesterday I started melting old candle wax with the intention of making candles. As the wax was melting I realized that I had misplaced the hemp rope which I use for my bigger candles. All I had was thin wick, wick that I've learned doesn't do well in the containers that I fill. The wax was melted so I decided to try my hand at hand- dipped tapers. 


Everyone's presents just may be topped with candles this Christmas. 



Does dad really need another tie?

I don't know about you but the majority of the people on my Christmas list truly have everything they need. Will I still buy them Christmas gifts? Yes because it is my love language. I love finding the perfect gift in hopes that it will demonstrate my love for the one who receives my gift. But what if I shaved off about $2 per person in order to give someone, one who has little, a gift?

Gifts of Hope 2013 from World Help on Vimeo.

I buy Christmas gifts for roughly 20 people. $2 per person, 20 people....that would be $40. 
$40 doesn't seem much but as I look through my Gifts of Hope catalog I see that if I pitched in an extra five bucks I could provide clean water for three people. In her book Awake, Noel writes, "Americans spend an average of $700 each at Christmas, which with a population of a little over 300 million , works out to over $210 billion.....if just half the population set aside $200 of their Christmas spending and put it toward the water crisis, the problem cou…

Made By Survivors

"Made by Survivors is an international nonprofit and social enterprise which employs and educates survivors of slavery and people at extreme risk, including many women and children living in extreme poverty."
**100% of profits going to support rescue and aftercare. Women's empowerment and Fair Trade with fashion and style.
Made By Survivors creates many beautiful products that would make lovely Christmas gifts! Check out their website.

Eden Ministry

In Red Light districts across Asia girls are being exploited, often involuntarily but sometimes voluntarily as these girls come from small villages in hopes to escape poverty. Most of these girls are tricked into prostitution, manipulated and abused. Often these girls feel stuck, stuck in a life they didn't choose, either because they have a pimp threatening their lives or their self-worth has become so low that they can't even imagine having, or deserving, a better life.

Eden Ministry is offering a solution. Eden teams reach out to the prostitutes, offering medical clinics where they can educate on the dangers of STD's and HIV, as well as providing crisis pregnancy care. Shelter, along with counseling, is offered to girls who are ready to walk away from prostitution. 
"Eden serves to restore freedom for the captives of Asia's red light districts through holistic programs- transforming body, mind and spirit. Using our international jewelry business as a platform, we…

Deepgreen

Deepgreen Project ~ beautiful hand knit scarves and hats made by women in Asia who have suffered various injustices. "Deepgreen Threads is a knitting business that provides work for women in our community who have suffered injustice. Our desire is to see these women empowered to grow professionally, personally and spiritually." 
The couple behind Deepgreen have visited my church, in fact, last year the money collected during the student ministry's (middle school through high school) worship time was used to support Deepgreen. In between Saturday night church service and the time in which the students meet there is a "grab & go" cafe. Each Saturday night I'd hand my son $5-$10 to grab dinner. Every Saturday night on our way home I'd ask The Boy what he had for dinner. Almost every Saturday night he'd tell me he wasn't hungry so he didn't get anything. He's a teen...he's ALWAYS hungry. After a little prying I found out that every Sat…

30 days of gifts

Hmm.....just the other day I was thinking it was time for a break. No blog. No computer. And then I was sitting here browsing a store that uses it's profits to benefit others. I've ventured into many of these sites lately as I start thinking about Christmas gifts and my hope to help others with the money that I spend. So as I'm perusing, without even thinking, I click open a new tab, type in 30 Days of Gifts......WAIT! What am I doing?

Yep, I'm declaring November as 30 days of gifts. Thirty days in which I'll share ideas for gifts that are local, homemade, sustainable.....gifts that not only bless the receiver but also, in purchasing, blesses a "mom & pop store", a stay-at-home mother who is trying to keep her family afloat, a woman rescued from oppression who is making "pretties" in order to support herself, a company that gives all it's profits to supply the needs of orphans......I could go on, there are so many opportunities to help ot…

Day 30 & 31

I may have missed writing down my praise for day 30 and day 31 but I did not miss the two days of sharing moments with my children (which includes my boy, my girl and my Little Sprouts).

A quiet daycare day on Wednesday led to a fun-filled field trip. Quarry Hill Nature Center (one of my top ten favorite places to take kids), Sekapp's Apple Orchard and McDonald's play land made for a fun morning with the kids.

Yesterday my sweet daughter motivated me to clean up the front porch so that we could do a little decorating for our treat or treat visitors. Traffic usually comes through the back porch, however for Halloween the front porch is much more convenient. Unfortunately the front porch had become a storage room of sorts. You know that room that some people have, the one in which items (or boxes of items) get stashed when company is coming? Yep, that's my front porch. I wish I had taken a before picture. Or maybe I'm glad I didn't. Just take my word for it - it was …