Today is the day! We leave for Haiti tonight with a brutal flight, arriving in Port Au Prince tomorrow afternoon. We will be working at God's Littlest Angels located in the mountains above Port au Prince. (It is about a 2 hour drive from the airport to GLA.) We don't know exactly what work we will be doing, but it will likely be in construction...building, painting, etc, spending time with kids, and help out as needed whether that be cooking or cleaning.
My mind and stomach are a whirling mess of thoughts and emotions. I am incredibly excited! I have never gone on a "missions" trip before...(I call it "missions" because to me my whole life is my mission, and it is not limited to a few acts of service.) I can hardly wait to meet Sebastian (you can check out his story at GLA's website/blog), cuddle the little ones, horse around with the older kids and just love on them with all I've got to give!
I'm also worried. Worried about how my heart will fare. I know a part of me will stay in Haiti...forever...I'm just not sure how I will handle all the emotions of seeing pain, suffering, kids without families and then come home to my very rich and oh so blessed life. Would you please pray that somehow we would manage? Thanks.
I'm also a bit concerned about my kids...especially Raina. I know they are in good hands and will be well taken care of...but, I worry about her crying because she misses us...typical protective mama here! :)
This entire trip has been amazing to plan. I'm sure you remember back in May when I posted about my encounter with God at our Women's Retreat. That experience was a huge motivator for this trip, along with Martin vowing to help out in Haiti after the earthquake. I began asking people to join us...we needed 8-10 people. Many were interested, but the timing was not right. I began to think that God was closing the door. Eventually we had 6 team members and planned to go ahead with 6 people. However, within days we had 10 team members with more people wanting to join us! Amazing!
Back in November we planned a soup and pie supper and raised over $3000! Not bad for our little church. We knew we had too much money to fill up 10 extra suitcases and knew God's hand was certainly in this! BUT that is not where the story ends. My brother and his wife have a small home-based business and asked if they could set up a pail for funds...of coarse we agreed. Their customers gave $150! More than I expected! Then a small, conservative Mennonite Church asked if they could help out as well. This is the church I grew up in and I knew they were generous people, but they honestly knocked my socks off!!...in 2 Sundays they raised a whopping $8500!!! Then another brother decided to sell his freezer...conveniently stored at my house...and donate that money to GLA...another $100. We also received another cheque from one of my brothers, for $300. Then a woman from our community donated $100 from her sales of Christmas baking. And then yesterday another $1000 came in! That works out to well over $13,000.00!!! $13,000 that GLA can use to build their expanding orphanage, diaper and feed their babies!! God is so VERY GOOD!!!
I will not be posting while we are gone, but plan to share when we return...until then...please keep our entire team in you prayers...Thanks!
PS: Here's a sample of the items we bought...diapers, formula, sleepers, toiletries, markers, caulking, screws, tie rod ends, and much more...so much fun spending someone else's money!! ;)
Sunday, January 22, 2012
Saturday, January 21, 2012
I thought I should let you know that Morgun has decided to become Amish...well, he did for a day. Morgun and his buddies were planning a skit for school and this is the look he came up with for his part. Doesn't he look like a little Amish gentleman? :)
Alex decided to join in and dress up too...what a handsome "wild west" cowboy!
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Well, I have finally made the decision to make my blog public. I hope it is an inspiration and encouragement to others...not that I think my life is that exciting or interesting. I look forward to "meeting" new people, learning and being inspired by them. That is my biggest reason for going public. I have read many blogs that encourage and inspire me, and feel this is a way to "meet" more people. I also don't think it is fair that I am allowed into other peoples lives and keep mine private. Can't wait to see where this takes me! :)
Welcome to all new readers...praying our lives will spur us on to all things that honor God!
Welcome to all new readers...praying our lives will spur us on to all things that honor God!
We LOVE hand-me-downs! I'm not sure what we would do without them. They are a huge blessing to us...and oh, so much fun! Most of the clothes we get are for the girls and most are way too big. I sort through them and store them according to size. This time around Raina got into the clothes and began trying them on...so cute! She especially loved the shoes with the heal and had a blast strutting her stuff!!
Monday, January 16, 2012
I can not believe my baby girl is 6! My how time flies! Our little princess had 2 birthday cakes. One on her birth day and one at her party. The first cake was fairly simple, although I did have a difficult time with the squiggles...that's what happens when you are missing the writing tip from your cake decorating set. With a little duct tape and a lot of determination I was able to make it work...sort of!
I wanted to make another simple, but lovely cake for Malia's party...but that didn't happen...thanks to the inspiration of my lovely friend Rita. Yes, I do blame her for causing me to attempt something WAY beyond my ability and level of experience. We spent an evening shopping and had a blast! I intended to purchase a large round cake pan and a decorating kit...that's it! But...by the time we left WalMart I had purchased everything from Chinese lanterns to pillars for the cake! The cake turned out ok, but I had neglected to purchase hot pink food coloring and wasn't about to make another long trip into town just for that, so the cake was not the exact color I would have liked.
I saw a really cool banner idea in one of my Stampin Up! flyers and wanted to make it. However, I soon realized that the banner would be HUGE if I wanted to have multiple layers. So I switched to squares and it turned out lovely...even the boys thought so!
We dressed up as princess', painted nails, wore tiaras, made a craft, and had lots of fun!
Tuesday, January 10, 2012
We had very little snow for Christmas which felt very weird. I love snow...and lots of it! I wish we would get 3 feet of snow at least once a year. If it didn't snow more after that I would be fine...I just don't like seeing boring brown all the time! However, I do love the mild weather we have been having...+5 in January...go figure! We did have frost one day and it made everything look sooo beautiful! We simply had to venture outside!
One of our boys' many forts.
Raina was hoisted up...
..but was soon hollering! I know I'm a mean mom...I couldn't help but chuckle! She is so darn cute when she cries!
Monday, January 9, 2012
We have a yearly tradition of exchanging gifts and having supper with Ruth and Wayne during the holiday season. It was my turn to host this year. We had ham and potatoes along with all the fixings. It was great to relax and have someone over for Christmas supper.
My family met at Joe & Ruth's house, which is where I grew up. It is a large house, but is rapidly becoming too small to fit all of us. This Christmas everyone in Sask showed up for a grand total of 50! As you can see the living room was VERY crowed! I think this was truly the best Christmas with my family in many, many years! We laughed and laughed! And laughed some more! I don't think we have ever laughed so much at a family gathering! I remember shortly before Mom passed away, I begged God to allow good to come from her passing. I specifically asked Him to help us kids get along better and have meaningful relationships...and He has...we're still not as close as I would like, and there are still those who harbour bitterness and anger, but I do believe that in time that too will change.
And once again we spent another day with Martin's folks. It was wonderful to spend time with just them...no other family members.
She already understands and can speak a few Low German words...looks like she's trying to look the part! lol!
Six of my seven favorite people in the world! :)
Wednesday, January 4, 2012
We had a wonderful relaxing Christmas holiday and I am not ready to get back into a routine. I loved all the late nights, watching far too many movies, reading, warm fires, eating more junk food than healthy food, family, friends and all things Christmas! But alas, live is back to normal, the boys are back in school and Martin is back at work. So...because I am still in denial I will post on Christmas and enjoy the memories!
Our Christmas Eve usually means opening gifts from Auntie Kathy, Uncle Mark, Owen and Kiannah. Our kids love their gifts! Malia's book is being played by all! Thanks guys!!!
Morgun insisted on wearing Martin's old shirt. I can totally imagine what Martin looked like as a young boy!
Opening gifts from Grandma and Grandpa. I bought the gifts and Martin's mom wrapped them. I know she misses being able to buy the gifts so we thought this may help get her in the festive mood. This doll makes the weirdest baby noises...sounds more like a kitten purring! lol!
Our beautiful Malia!
Raina waiting patiently to open her gifts.
Morgun...one day I noticed him lying flat on his stomach staring at this gift, trying to figure out what it was. He laughed when he saw how I tricked him...by simply adding a pointy end! Our boys always figure out the Lego gifts so some creativity was needed!
Martin's favorite gift...remote control airplane from the kids. Yes, the thing has been banging into my walls and even my light fixtures!
Raina kissing her new Chinese Raggedy Ann doll.