Monday, August 31, 2009

Little Girl (Happy then Sad)

I snapped this picture from my iPhone the other day.
Here is my 7 year old Amy after eating TCBY.

Frozen Yogurt
Reading comics
Jelly bracelets

Could she be any more 7 years old?

I love it.
I'm pretty sure this is what I looked like when I was a little girl, too.

Enjoy this picture.

I am so sad.
I googled jelly bracelets to maybe link to a fun page.
I had forgotten something that I once heard about. The pages I was taken to were not fun. I don't even advise you, the reader, to google it. It's x-rated in content.
I used to wear these bracelets when I was little and never did they mean anything sexual. They meant fun and friendship and cool and neat; the same reasons my innocent daughter is wearing them.
I'm disgusted that someone stole the right for me to comfortably let my children wear these around town.
Proverbs 3:32
For the LORD detests a perverse man but takes the upright into his confidence.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

3 Word Prayer

I absolutely loved this post and was inspired enough to copy her idea.

Initially I had a long and detailed blog posting about the differences in prayer.
The lengthy, the quickened, the needs, the thanks, the requests, etc.

But erased it all.
Like the 3-word prayer, sometimes just getting to the point is sufficient.

Here is my 3 Word Prayer:

Please heal Jill.

What's yours?

Monday, August 17, 2009

hair Hair HAIR

If you're friends with me on FaceBook, then most of these pictures will be re-runs.

I've been working with my girls' hair and have been getting increasingly better at it. I honestly pray over their heads and over my ability to give them pretty hair. Hey, I need all the help I can get! And it's super important to me that my ethnic children have pretty hair.

"Hair is the richest ornament of women." Martin Luther

Here is Yolanta's hair that I did one Sunday morning.
Cute, huh!?

And here is Katie's hair all poofy and fluffy and adorable ready for church.
I just love it like this.

I can't do those gorgeous corn-rows, however.
My girlfriend Rachel went to a ballet recital or softball game or SOMETHING and there was a little brown cutie with adorable hair. My friend asked the mother (whom Rachey did not even know) if she did her daughter's hair and the lady said "No way! Weedor did it for me."
So Rach thought of me and my needs and got Weedor's information.
I called this mysteriously named lady and found she only lives about 5 miles from my house. Not being a confident driver, she asked if I could pick her up and bring her back to my house to do the hair session. Having laundry to fold, homeschooling so accomplish and a new book to read (The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf), I gladly went to get her instead of spending the day at HER house.

It's amazing how skilled these black women are at manipulating these teeny tiny curls into position. I'm always mystified and awe struck! I gawked on with my jaw open as she whipped out these perfectly straight parts and braided microspic sized portions of hair. I sometimes have a hard enough time trying to find the scalp let alone fashion the hair into a kazillion braids!
I made "hmph" sounds while Weedor giggled at my astonishment.
It's part of her culture. Part of her upbringing. It is for most black women all over the world.
I even remember photos of my girls in the orphanage and several pictures showed teens braiding kids' hair in the background.
Even my Yolanta and Katie knew how to braid when I went and visited them in Haiti back when they were only 3 and 5 year's old. I brought little dollies and hair ties and the first thing they did was rip out the store manufactured rubber-banded braids and re-braided them and put lots and lots of hair scrunchies and rubber-bands in their hair. They were practically born with the skill.

It took 3 hours for Yolie's hair to be braided.
It took 3 hours for Katie's hair to be braided.
It took 20 minutes for Amy's hair to be braided.
Yes, she was at my house

Weedor is from Liberia. I'm guessing she is about 35 years old. During a war that broke out, she, her husband and their 1 year old son took refuge in another country. Through connections they were able to get to the states. That was 15 years ago.
All their family still live in Liberia. There is still war there, too. She indicates it's very dangerous and very sad and she fears for her family.
She travels every year to visit her mother and siblings.
Weedor also sends the exact same amount of money every month for support.

This month she found herself $50 short.
She didn't know where she was going to come up with it even though she and her husband have well paying jobs. They now have 3 children and, like everyone during these hard times, find making ends meet harder and harder to do. Let alone be the major source of income for another family thousands of miles away.

She prayed.
God moved.
I called.

Hi, we don't know each other, but I was wondering if you could braid my daughter's hair for me. I'll pay you! :)

I just love how God works.
I had a little extra cash this month, she needed a little extra cash.
I wanted my girls' hair braided, she had the skills to make it happen.

She is a really neat lady who's name and number I will keep. I see myself being friends with her as I really enjoyed her company. I didn't even read any of my book that day we chatted so much!
I'd also like to call her in the future when I'd like to do something fancy for my girls again. Who knows...maybe it will be at just the right time!
Amy's hair doesn't stay in braids nearly as long so we ended up taking them out just 6 days later. That's okay by me...I don't think she looks as cute with them in as her sisters do. ssshhhhh.

After seeing her hair like this, now she wants a PERM!
I guess I better get used to all this fuss over hair. They are girls, after all!

"And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered."
Matthew 10:30

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Medika Mamba is Creole for Peanut Butter Medicine

"My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations." Isaiah 56:7

“I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” John 14:18

"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations." Mathew 28:19

Oh, beautiful Haiti.
Oh, poor, impoverished, corrupt, Haiti.

Population: 8.5 million
Childhood Mortality: 129 of every 1,000 Haitian children will die before their fifth birthday.

Here is a 3+ minute video about Medika Mamba.

I never went to Mexico to put on a VBS or build a school when I was in High School like a lot of other youth groupers did.

I never spent any time abroad involved with the Peace Corp when I was in my early 20's like a lot of other soul searching and want-to-help-the-world-ers did.

I never felt the call to move my family to a foreign country to spread the Gospel like a lot of other ministry-minded wives do.

I have, however, twice been to Haiti during the process of adopting my daughters.

Having not witnessed extreme poverty before I was 32 years old, traveling to the most impoverished country in the Western Hemisphere was shocking to me.

It jolted all 5 of my senses. It's been 13 months since I was last in Haiti and images still race through my mind. Neither time I was there was I allowed to go walking the streets of Port-au-Prince or venture out to the country side to gain a better understanding of the country and experience the way of life as it is for a Haitian. I don't know if I really gained a full comprehension of the reality of where and how this country needs help.

It was, of course, for my safety that I had limited and restricted access to go immerse myself in the aftermath of a crumbling, gang infested, strained, civil war-torn country.

But what I DID see and what I DID experience and what I DID understand are these things:

Haiti needs God

Haiti needs good food and clean water

Haiti needs honest politicians

Haiti needs education

Haiti needs relief

I watch documentaries and read books and news reports of the progress of Haiti.

I actively read blogs of other adoptive families and blogs of aid workers and missionaries caring for the people...the children...the country.

Through this blog, and specifically from this post, I have learned about MFK (Meds and Food for Kids). MFK saves the lives of severely malnourished children in Haiti by producing and prescribing Medika Mamba, a Ready to use Therapeutic Food (RUTF).

They are implemented through 12 partners that include hospitals, feeding programs, church run medical clinics and housing projects.

Find out more about this awesome organization HERE.

I want to know. I want to help. I want my children (when the time is right) to understand the country from which they've come. I want to instill a desire to help and rehabilitate and spread the Good News. I want my children to come to an understanding that helping, and loving on a hurting, hungry country is important, worthwhile, Biblical.

Now is not the time to go spend my days in Haiti. Perhaps someday my family and I will, indeed, become a part of Haiti in a way that will bring health and healing and help.

What can I do today?

I can pray.
I can donate money.
I can spread the word of the need for help so that you can pray and donate and maybe even Go.

I know there is poverty here in the sates. I know there is extreme poverty all.over.the.globe.
I know people are hurting. Others are helping. Child Sponsorships are happening every single day. Adoptions are happening. Awesome!

My heart is aching for the people of Haiti. Of course. :)
What makes your heart ache?

Pray. Give. Go.

Peanut Butter, for peetsake! That right there saves lives. Will you help?

Friday, August 7, 2009