Tuesday, June 5, 2012


So Megan & I leave for Sierra Leone, West Africa in just three days!  I can’t even begin to share with you how much this means to me!  As I sit here and think about how much Africa has consumed my thoughts and my heart the last 2 ½ years, I just am amazed by God’s providence and prevenient grace in my life.  Orphans nor Africa were even on my radar then… you can read about how I became aware of the plight of the orphan here, and about the book that opened my heart to them on my book blog.

Once I decided to take the plunge and sign up to go on a mission trip, Jeff & I discussed the logistics of it all.  With a job, four kids and a husband who works a crazy schedule, it is no easy thing to leave the kids and travel half way around the world for 12 days.  But I knew I would do anything to be able to go. What I didn’t anticipate was having my pride dissolved and my heart completely humbled in the process. I was blessed with funds and loving, encouraging notes from so many people and I am so grateful and overwhelmed by the generosity, love and support that I have gotten from my family, my church family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, clients & vendors. 

So if you clicked on the link above about how I was introduced to TRS, you know it caught me completely off guard and pierced my heart.  Hearing the co-founders share their story of opening up an orphanage in Sierra Leone and specifically the life and health of one little boy named Festus broke my heart and convicted me to support them in their fight to save the orphan.  To read more about Festus, please read this. 

Now, can you imagine my joy as I read the updates from Erica & Kelly as they brought little Festus to The Covering?  Then they asked for help to sponsor him!!  Guess what? Yeah, I know you already know…. Jeff & I are now sponsoring this little boy who's story broke my heart 2 ½ years ago!

I got to skype with Festus for the first time this morning, and I will get to meet him in just a few days! (Sorry I know the picture quality is awful, but that is how it looked on Skype this morning, too :) Fatmata was reading me a story and Lawrence & Festus were listening so sweetly.

I just can't wait to meet these three beautiful children who have changed my life forever!  Thank you to everyone who has made this trip possible.  Thank you to all of you who are praying over Megan & me as we travel and experience the next two weeks together.  I love you all.  

How AWESOME is our GOD?



Bigger than all of Africa <3

Ephesians 3:20
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Back to Blogging and off to Africa!

Well, as you can tell, my last post over a year ago about not blogging often enough really inspired me to blog more :)
But now I am planning a trip to Africa in June with The Raining Season and I really want to keep a record of the process so here we go once again!
I hope to back-blog a little to record some family happenings so we will see if that actually happens.  In the mean time, Happy New Year!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Bad Blogger Busy Bee

There was a little mother,
who had a big beehive.

She buzzed around and
       o  u
    r         n
a                d
a                d
    r         n
      o   u

Her life was full of sweet
little honey treats

known as baby bumble bees.

There was a little mother
who loved and

    o        e 
 l                d
 l                d
    o        e

and forgot to "blog" it down.

So if you want to know
how the little bumble bees are doin'

they are turning into busy lil' bees
just buzzin' and

        z   z
    u           i
b                  n'
b                  n'
    u           i
        z   z

I've missed writin' it down.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Disneyland Momma

The last couple of weeks have been so much fun!  Here is a re-cap!

Hubby & I snuk away for a night out on the town while my friend Jewels took care of the kidlets!  SWA had an employee special at the Palazzo so we stayed there super cheap and got 2 for 1 tickets to Blue Man Group!  It was rockin' - especially since they were overbooked and upgraded us to a 2000 sq foot suite (that's as big as my HOUSE, people!) complete with a baby grand piano (I really should practice more so I can play in those situations - cuz you know they happen all the time…..)  and a pool table (I really should practice that too, a shark I am not!)  We had such a great time and stayed out half the night and acted like newly-weds!  It was so much fun and oh-so-indulgant!  Yipee! I love me some couple time with my man!

I took Bella on a trip to Disneyland! Yes!  Just Bella & me!  It was so fun to spend time with her and be silly, crazy, giddy for a few days!

The purpose of the trip is actually to spend time talking about what I like to call the "Sex, Drugs & Rock-n-Roll" conversation we all have to have with our kids.  About four years ago, my pastor's wife (who is one of my parenting mentors) told me how she had taken her daughter on a Disney Cruise for a few days and had the above referenced talk and how wonderful it was to spend time talking and making good memories one-on-one BEFORE the hormones and boy-craziness hits that we call Junior High!  So she made me promise I would take my kids on a trip (and Hubby would take our son) to do the same.  Shortly after that conversation, I was at a Marriage Conference called Weekend to Remember when I saw a display for a program like Pastor's Wife had described called Passport to Purity  - Perfect!  I bought it and saved it for a year when Rose was getting ready to start Middle School.  She had chosen to go to Six Flaggs Magic Mountain and we rode roller coasters (and I got my brains mushed) for three fun filled days!  So Bella has been planning her Passport to Purity trip for the last three years!  

Some things I loved about my Mommy / Daughter trip with Bella:

  • Bella planned for weeks which rides we would go on and in what order 
  • As soon as we arrived at our room in the hotel, she unpacked her bag, arranged her cosmetics, potions & lotions and turned down the bed
  • I was able to spoil her rotten and buy her gifts and treats and not feel a bit guilty! 
  • It was a  once in a lifetime weekend and I lived fully in the moment
  • We skipped through Disneyland and acted like 11 year olds
  • We ate chicken strips and fries (her very favorite) every single day, most days twice a day
  • We played in the ocean, splashing and drinking too much salt water and getting sand everywhere, including all over the rental car
  • I left her gifts on her pillow (bracelets, books, bookmarks, cd's) to shower her with love
  • I got to visit my birth-place and the beaches I always heard my older siblings talk about surfing at when we lived in California
  • I got to see my daughters love for her siblings as she carefully and thoughtfully picked out gifts for all of them
  • We had the best conversations about the purpose of life, love and discussed her hopes and dreams

I love you, my Bella!  
Since I'm in the mode of the Disneyland Fairytale -
May all your dreams come true!  

Monday, July 19, 2010

Blessings we don't even see...

There is such a dichotomy of pain, beauty, need, abundance, joy & sorrow all around the world and my eyes are beginning to see clearly now.

A prayer that I have been praying for about six months now is a quote by Bob Pierce, Founder of World Vision:

"Let my heart be broken by the things that break the heart of God"

I guess I should be careful what I pray for.  I am beginning to yearn for deeper involvement in The Raining Season.  As I read their blog and blogs that link to their blog and blogs that link to those blogs……. I am so very moved by all of the wonderful ways that God is using his Body of Christ to help Save the Orphan.  I am inspired by all of the Godly, giving, loving women and families that I am reading about and I seem to want to get involved more deeply.

Because I dream about it, think about it, read books about it, and don't forget; read blogs about it!

I just finished a book called Little Bee, which I probably won't blog about on my book blog because I want to forget it.  It was a fiction book that started out amazing, was written very very well, but took a terrible tangent on infidelity that I felt was completely not required for the plot.  But, it did get me thinking, so here are my musings:

What a wonderful world I was born into!  I have had so many blessings and opportunities that so many other women my age around the world have not had.  So let's pretend for just a moment that I haven't had some of the advantages that being born in the United States of America in the 1970's has given me:

  • I was born with severely bowed legs, I don't know the medical term for this; but I do know that I had to have casts on my legs for months to straighten out my bones.  I was still teased mercilessly in school for my silly walk, but I have grown out of it.  I do still have the cute little white cast that was on one of my infant legs. 
  • I got my first pair of glasses in 3rd grade, and my first pair of contacts in 6th.  I have complained almost every day of my life that my eyes don't work because I am hopelessly nearsighted and even laser surgery is not an option for me, but contacts help me see 20/20!  Do you think I would even HAVE glasses if I lived in a third world country?  
  • I broke my arm jumping on a trampoline when I was 10, and when it didn't heal right, I had to have surgery to cut out the dead bone and replace it with a new bone from the hospitals bone bank as well as 6 pins to secure it in place.  I now have 100% use of my arm and wrist; before surgery the rotation and strength was diminishing daily.
  • I now have straight teeth because my mother worked very hard to provide me with orthodontia and way too many fillings for cavities from my sugar addiction…..
  • I had surgery at 21 to diagnose severe abdominal pain and was diagnosed with endometriosis; which causes infertility and of course, severe abdominal pain.
  • I did 6 months of hormone therapy to shrink the endometriosis and enable me to become a mommy of four beautiful and much wanted miracle babies!
And that is only SOME of my boring medical details……

  • I was able to attend school every single day it was offered while I was young, and they even fed me lunch and bussed me to and from school 5 days a week!
  • I played baseball, volleyball and danced in drill team to my heart's content!
  • I was given a love for reading and writing and as an adult, yes; even a love for math!
  • I went to college (after college, after college, after college) - we moved a lot, ok?! It's kind of an ongoing joke between hubby and I!
  • I am now a working mother with an amazingly supportive husband who co-parents with me!
  • I earn a great salary and am able to care for my family while working at a job I love in the construction industry where I am usually the only woman in a room full of men; where they treat me (mostly) with kindness and respect.
  • I am free to worship my God with abandon!
So now for the third world version of me:

I am a bow-legged, blind, snaggle-toothed (ok, lets be real - I probably don't have but a couple of teeth left at this point), uneducated woman (who can't read) with no children and an arm that is bent up and atrophied, and if I know Jesus; there are those who will kill me if they find out.  If I live in Sierra Leone, my life expectancy is 41 years; so that means I have less than four years to live.

Talk about a wake up call to appreciate my circumstances!!!!

Please forgive me if I feel a little disconnected from this life that I am living that includes an over-abundance of things, and over-indulgance of food, and an un-concerned community for their neighbor.
I hope you also see that I have an abundance of love in my home, a heart indulging in the great things around me, and a concern growing for my neighbor; including the orphan.   

For now, I will continue to study God's Word and pray for his will to become my reality.  I will also thank God every day for my glasses (ok, contacts!), straight teeth, able body, beautiful babies, nice home, loving husband, steady income, books galore, vacations, good food, technology, air conditioning, motrin, coffee, washing machine, soft bed, closet full of clothes, toys all over the floor, bills, chores………. 

Please won't you join me in my prayer to have your heart broken by the things that break the heart of God?  I promise, your heart will burst as you see more of the blessings all around you as the things that you don't have will not seem so important anymore, and the things that others don't have will.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Toothless the Nightfury Dragon

Fred lost his first tooth!  His two front bottom teeth have been loose for a month or so and he has been working to get them out.  Every night at bedtime we brush teeth and I wiggle them hard a couple times to help out.  The other night I could tell that the one was really loose; and well; having one child who swallowed a tooth, let's just say I didn't want a re-peat of that scenario..... so I asked Fred if I could just try one more time to get it out.


Out it came, no problemo, just a little blood & NO TEARS!  Oh, Fred - you are such a little man, good job dude!  Let's go show Daddy & Sissies your toothless grin!

We booked it downstairs and he took in all the "cool, dude" and "awesome" accolades and we went to head back upstairs to bed.

While still in the kitchen and with everyone around, little man grabbed his tummy and started whining "Oh, Momma, I don't feel so good....." while his eyes were rolling up in his head and he started flopping around like you do just before you faint.....

I jumped into action, grabbing him and talking to him to keep him from passing out, trying to gain eye contact and (gently) smackin his cheeks to try to get him to snap out of it.  My mind was racing 1000 miles an hour... please don't pass out; you did such a good job not crying when you saw blood and your sisters will never let you live it down if you faint after loosing your first tooth.... when Fred suddenly perked right up, jumped out of my arms and yelled


"Boo! haha Momma, got ya!"

If he wasn't toothless before, he certainly would be now........