Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Much Better

Wow, I am feeling much better after my whole, "confession". I am all packed. I have 120 headbands tagged and ready to sell. Missy is bringing 51 BEMM candles as well. I don't have a BEMM booth, so whatever sells will be because of word of mouth. The Tacky for Africa headband fans out there going to T4 start spreading the word! They can be purchased at the project Hopeful Booth. I decided to use the headbands to support the work they are doing. I can not wait to meet Carolyn and the other ladies that started Project Hopeful. My hope is the money that is raised in the sale of headbands in cooperation with BEMM at their booth be used to help grow or start an HIV+ mommas program. (Though this has yet to be discussed, I am purely doing this in faith:)
The cost for the headbands at T4 is $10. I paid the refugee mommas $4.00 to sew each headband. My goal and vision with BEMM is to support, uplift, and empower Mommas everywhere. By paying the refugees instead of having volunteers sew this batch, I was able to accomplish all 3 goals. The rest of the $ that is raised at the Project Hopeful booth will go to them. Here's the thing...I paid the refugees upfront in faith that:
1: I WILL BE ABLE TO SELL THE HEADBANDS THIS WEEKEND (thus recouping my $400+ investment into their lives)
2: That they would produce a product worth the $10....

Once again..I am finding myself in a pickle. I have $120 headbands that I need to sell! I was super excited about these! They were made with the material I picked out..I thought the era of the tacky headband was gone. Well, turns out about 30% of the headbands flaws. Personally, I love it and think it makes them way more personable. After all how many of us can say we are wearing a headband made by a refugee of Congo and that our purchase helps support their families? So, once again...I pray that the headbands are bought with the spirit of helping and not getting. At the same time, you maybe pleasantly surprised.

As always I can guarantee 2 things.
1: 100% of your money will go towards a momma in Africa
2. You may love your headband or you may not...but that is not the point.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Mask

I'm leaving Thursday morning at 4am to Austin for the Together 4 Adoption conference and well....I'm not excited. I keep asking myself and God, "Why am I going, really why?" You know besides the great speakers, time to fellowship with like minded people, seeing one of my favorite blog friends, selling BEMM headbands at the Project Hopeful booth. The truth is, I don't like group settings, not to mention sleeping with a ton of people I don't know...More than that..I hate seeing the masks people wear or feeling like I need one too. The last time I went to one of these things, I knew nobody. Sure I knew people from blogland or reputation, but know any of I was so uncomfortable the whole time. No one would know it by looking at me. I'm outgoing, I adapt easily. But it was awful. I hated feeling like the 5th wheel, or the "who's" that person. I hated seeing even in such an environment as Orphan care..that there were cliques. The "in" people. The people "you just have to know"! I hated being forgotten the moment I was introduced. I had just finished fighting typhoid fever, Hep a, incredibly sick twins that had only been home for months, Gedese had just left..the last thing I wanted was to feel alone amongst hundreds of people. I had spent the first 36 years of my life the oddball, weirdo...I didn't want to spend the next 36 years lonely. So..there began my journey for acceptance and belonging..I think I spent the next year trying to get to know as many people as I could. I joined yahoo groups, twitter, facebook, I blogged more often. The more involved I got..the more feedback I craved. And guess what? It worked. People responded, I felt accepted... This barely known by anyone girl managed to have 520 friends on FB, 736 fans on Because Every Mother Matters...I felt so good...I felt safe...I started opening up about me, the real me, my REAL struggles...not just the ones I want the world to see...not the ones that will earn me brownie points, the hard stuff...revealing stuff. The more I opened up, the more fake I felt. Even though my true self was pouring out and I was motives were wrong. I realized I had WAY too much junior high in me still. In the midst of all of this truth, I am committed to going to the conference and feel just sick to my stomach. There are many people who this time will "know" me and I won't be the 5th wheel. I know I am feeling so angst because I hated all the masks I saw at the last one and I was so close to willingly wear one myself...all because I want to belong. So, the day before the conference I sent out a post proclaiming my fakeness, then I closed my Yahoo accounts and am soon to leave Twitter. I have spoken more about my weaknesses in the last few months...mainly to connect and thus be accepted. Did you know being lame is the new cool? LOL...This time I really am calling myself out. I needed to do this before T4..and if it means, I will once again be the forgotten, the lonely, the unknown, the "who's that"...then I will embrace that the way I should have from the beginning...It's not about me. It's really not. The more I seek out approval and acceptance the more I miss out on truth and growth. At 38, I don't have time to play pretend. This is me...and like I have said before..I qam a beautiful mess.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

There's a Lesson in This...

I know there is....there has to least I hope there is....I came home this morning after a long morning of soccer, paintball and Adam being gone, to a bloody massacre in my dining room. Our dining room or more exactly under the dining table has become a place my family refers to as, "the killing field". I know it sounds completely morbid and beyond gross..but it is what it is. It is the place that our family cats bring in their prey and leave them either dying, dead or completely massacred. The last thing I wanted to see at 10am after an already grueling morning was, blood, feathers, wings, bones and a visual play by play of the struggle this once beautiful bird had. I sent the kids outside telling them, a sacrifice was laid in the heart of the killing field". I'm sure this sounds disturbing to many of you, but we do live in the woods and the cycle of life is something my kids live with daily. We spent the first few years trying to shield them from, "the killing field"...We have rescued many creatures in the midst of tears falling and hearts pleading for things to be different...only to have the creatures we spent hours and days trying to heal only fall prey to their fate..
Today as I swept up the feathers, scrubbed the splattered blood and once again tried to wash away the stains not only for my children, but for my self the harsh reality of hit me...the lesson. The deeper one...there is the obvious..the cycle of life, etc.....but there's more. A lot more.

I started thinking about the bird...this one was different. The signs of struggle were obvious. I thought about the mice I have found. Obviously they didn't fight. The moles, bunnies, bats, frogs, chipmunks...I thought about the dozens and dozens of prey I have cleaned up under our dining room table. Then it hit cat is me...or a part of is my nature. It is neither good or just is. The prey the cat brings in is my struggle with sin. It's always going to be there. The" killing field" is the root. No matter killing field is the root of my sin. It's always the same. Sometimes it's masked like a mouse and other times a bird..the truth is, I struggle with the same sin, the same desire, the same temptation all my matter the form. The thing about this bird is it fought. Blood was everywhere..there was an epic battle, but like always..nature or "will" won. I couldn't help but to think of my struggle, my sin, my nature, His will. I know it is what it is and sin or "prey" will always be a part of my life...and the "killing fields" will always be the same...under my table or me struggling with the same crap just in different form. At times in my life I may be like the mouse that just crumbles during the chase, and hopefully other times I will be the bird...and I will FIGHT. I will fight the inevitable. It will be bloody and I won't go down easily...I will fight my own sin nature in the killing field...I may be lucky and escape for awhile, but the truth is I am the prey and I will eventually end up under the table. The truth is I will struggle with sin my whole life. Sometimes I will cave easily and not fight and other times I will put on the full armour of my God and it will be bloody...My only rest is in HIM my savior. What a sweet day it will be to sit as HIS feet.

Isaiah 65:19-25

19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more. 20 "Never again will there be in it infants who live but a few days, or older people who do not live out their years; those who die at a hundred will be thought mere youths; those who fail to reach a hundred will be considered accursed. 21 They will build houses and dwell in them; they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. 22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them, or plant and others eat. For as the days of a tree, so will be the days of my people; my chosen ones will long enjoy the work of their hands. 23 They will not labor in vain, nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune; for they will be a people blessed by the LORD, they and their descendants with them. 24 Before they call I will answer; while they are still speaking I will hear. 25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together, and the lion will eat straw like the ox, but dust will be the serpent's food. They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain," says the LORD.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

I wish

I just spent most of my morning pouring out my heart via vlog(video blog) thinking it would be easier to share.....Argh...I have no idea where my mug ended up. Sometimes the written word or at least what I try to convey through my writing is somehow..misunderstood, muted, or just plain ignored. I attempted my 2nd vlog attempt...It was beautiful, profound and as uniquely messed up as me.... and unfortunately it ended up in, I am left with only my keyboard, my frustration from failing at the vlog and my inadequacy to share my heart...

What am I suppose to say? Really?

How am I to share with you my true feelings?

I need you to hear this...I need you to listen to this...I need you to get this....And I need to do this with my limited vocabulary, bad writing skills....and somehow have your soul connect with what I am saying..

I wish I could just tell you to trust me. I wish I could tell you to come Nov. 1st with me to Ethiopia. I wish I could just let you know how important your are. I wish I could reach through my screen and let you are important. I wish I could let you are needed. I wish I could tell you to listen to the voice that is deep in your heart. I wish I could hold your hand and look into your eyes and tell you...YES, I am talking to you.....

I wish you knew....that you matter...and I NEED YOU.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Gedese Needs Help...

I'm sure many of you know who I am talking about. If summary-. Gedese was an olympic Marathon runner. She competed in the Sydney and the Atlanta Olympics. A year before I met her a drunk driver ran over her while she was training and both her legs were broken. She wasn't able to run anymore, thus slowly selling everything she had and at the same time had just lost her baby in utero at 8 months pregnant. That is about the time I met her while I was picking up my twins in Ethiopia. She was now sick and pregnant and penniless. I brought her home with me and she ended becoming the first "Because Every Mother Matters" momma. With the help of a local doctor and after I sold my van to cover the medical expenses she ended up giving birth to a baby girl, but they both almost died in the process. They are now both back in Ethiopia. Life is rough in Africa and she continues to struggle to support not only herself, daughter, husband, but many family members as well. In spite of the pain she suffered with her broken legs and lost dreams of being an Olympian..she continues to push forward. For the last 6 months she has been working through the pain and is training hard to run again. She was invited to compete in her first competition since the accident. Given that her chances maybe slim to win her "manager" is making her pay her own way to Europe. She called me today ashamed and embarrassed to ask for help..which makes me want to help even more. She needs 200 euro or roughly $300 us dollars to have a chance to not only compete for prize money, but to prove to herself and everyone that she can win! That she is strong. That she is worthy. That she does matter!

I am not in a position financially to personally cover the whole cost. My son Jace donated $40.
If you feel lead to help...please do so SOON. She needs the money ASAP. The race is in October. I will set up a paypal to the right.

Another Blogger in the House

Jace started his own blog. He reviews movies and video games.

Check him out here

Monday, September 20, 2010

I Hate Mosquitoes...

I really do. I hate them. They are annoying. They are responsible for the deaths of over 240 million people a year. (Including my daughter-to-be 7 month old Marion from Liberia). My daughter Faith gets on average one staph infection per year due to their bites. I am currently covered in anti-itch cream trying to soothe my multitude of welts. I hate them..yet, I also know that they are not on this planet by accident..nothing is..really. They have a purpose. They have to, right? My theory is they are here as a living metaphor to serve as a reminder to God's wisdom that is written throughout all of His living creation. Last summer I sat with my journal in a meadow surrounded by mountains. I was 3 days into my 8 day backpack adventure to hike 40 miles through the Colorado mountains. My feet were covered in water filled blisters, my back ached from carrying a 40 pound pack for miles/days...All I wanted with all my heart was to ignore my obvious discomfort...I just wanted to soak in the beauty around me. I was inspired..feeling free, strong and clear. I sat next to a creek...the flowing water spoke wise words to me. I watched the water rush by. The sound alone was an auditory reminder to just let let the burdens of my heart flow down the river. I noticed the rocks, they were unmovable yet not devoid of change..they told me to just hang on and don't get swept away...Over the years their surfaces become smooth, moss covered them, life around them was apparent. Yet, there they stayed as the water rushed all around. I was moved by the stubbornness of the rocks, but drawn by the flow of the water. I opened my journal to write, reflect and bare witness to what I believed to be God's divinity in nature. There I was completely unaware of the insane physical pain I was in...I was just present, breathing, learning...then THEY came! The mosquitoes. I was instantly distracted. I was annoyed. I sat there trying to hold onto the beauty and the lesson in front of me...I scribbled in my journal. I was determined to not let the mosquitoes win. I tried ignoring them, I tried fighting them...ultimately I gave up and moved. I was so ashamed and disappointed in myself that I allowed something so small to get in my way of discovery....Then it hit me! I was there in that meadow, between the mountains, down by the river, in physical grow. And the very things I hate the most were there to teach me..the mosquitoes.
If I could ignore my bigger physical pain, find wisdom in the running water/unmovable rock and still connect with my creator...then WHY IS IT SOMETHING SO SMALL CAN SEPARATE ME FROM HIM? Why do I get annoyed and distracted with the small and irritating stuff? If I can find beauty in the midst of a big struggle and trust my creator then why won't I let go of the small crap? I tend to let the mosquitoes in my life dictate my response....Yeah they are annoying. my daughter died from Malaria, my body is itching and I still hate them..but a small part of me is thankful for the wisdom that He shares through this living world...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Junkyard Beauty

Right now-without thinking, preconception or you're best friend. It may not be who you think it is...They may not be there for you in everyday life or the person you call to share the big news with or the little gossip you encounter in life...If you are like me... the person or people that come to mind are physically distant, quite different and not the 1st you call, but nonetheless...your best friend. You can go years and not even think of each other, but the moment you know nothing will keep you apart. My best friend and I joke around about how we have NOTHING in common. We spent only 6 months together in high school before going our separate ways. She has traveled the world over and continues to do so, is single, doesn't want children..*gasp* even admitted she doesn't even like kids, she is Jewish, controlling, and uses the f-bomb a lot. Well, and I am me. I have 6 kids, married almost 16 years, would like to travel more, love Jesus, recently started using the f-bomb again, and the only thing I wish to have control over are my BM's (I know..I could have left that out:)
We get together once a year and I think we spend the first day so excited to be with each other, the second day questioning why we are friends, the third day fighting...but when we make it to the fourth day..WOW! We remember why after 21 years and all our differences we are friends.
We both crave more. We desire with all our hearts to constantly change, grow, to see beauty where others see only explore the slightly different, engage the hurting and NEVER get old...only wiser:)
I think the "junkyard" we drove by in New Mexico sums up my love for her and her love for me.
At first glance or better yet while speeding down an old county road; you see from the corner of your eye a junkyard...probably hundreds of people drive-by and maybe only a handful slow down enough to see..and out of those a few actually stop and out of those few..maybe, just maybe one or two take the time to look around and even the one or two that take the time..they get bored after awhile and they leave. It's too different, too chaotic, too much work to find what you are looking for. Every once in awhile though...someone stays..they "get" it, they can make sense of the piles of junk, they can see the beauty, they appreciate the time spent to thoughtfully place each piece of junk. The junkyard is transformed into something that deserves to be explored. It's magical, comical, meaningful, thoughtful, and unmovable...
In the middle of the junkyard your differences seem so small, insignificant and phony...From the rust to the is what it is...just stuff, experiences, the shell of what it was meant to be. As your perspective stops focusing on the overwhelming crap that is the start to pay attention to the why is that vase next to the toy car? Your vision pulls back and you soak it all in. Not one single object is there by was placed there by the junk keeper. He took the time to line up the 4 rusted out peddle cars, all the speed limit signs were exactly where he wanted them....
I have my junk, my best friend has her junk and I'm pretty sure you have your junk....But in the junkyard there is beauty....You only need to stop. Take the time and really look...

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Heart of Me...

My heart and mind is swarming
with thoughts
and everything in between.
I want to scream.
let out a deep sigh...
I feel completely out of control
totally centered...

a woman
a lover
a friend
a mother
uniquely me..

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Been Awhile...

It's been a long time since I blogged about anything. It's not like I lack material to write about...just the opposite actually. My life has been painfully dramatic lately. The thing that stops me from writing is me... I think I would blog more if my life's drama was caused by something more a real challenge. Like a death in the family, a grave illness, etc...Nope. The drama in my life always stems from my own choices and behaviors. It's a lot less climatic and usually quite painful to talk about my own stupidity. Instead of painting the portrait of a humble and strong woman who courageously overcomes unforeseeable drama in her life..thus becoming a heroine...My painting ends up looking more like an abstract mess that is often misinterpreted and making me look more like an ass than a heroine. Somehow the only redeeming thing about being an ass is that Jesus himself road on one:)...

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


Today is the day my Lord has made
let me REJOICE in it!

I have been feeling angst lately...
I could go into all the details and justifications,
I won't.

It does not say...
rejoice tomorrow...
rejoice because things went well...
rejoice if it was a good day!
Rejoice today.
I am getting ready for a biopsy and colonscopy...
I rejoice.
Thank the Lord I live in a place that I have access to health care.
I am exhausted, frustrated and worn out from the responsibilities of being a mom.
Thank the Lord He has entrusted me with 6 beautiful lives.
I feel my man is missing the best parts of our children's lives...
I rejoice He works as hard as he does to provide for us.
I am lonely a lot...
I rejoice..
My God is there for me.
I am fearful of my test results and/or fearful of no answers....
I rejoice that He is sovereign.
I have struggled for 2 years with one of my adoptive kids, to the point of questioning everything..including GOD
I rejoice
in knowing He is in control and gave me a heart of stubbornness.
I am tempted to fall prey to my own sinful desires EVERYDAY...
rejoice in His love.
I am often burdened to the point of breaking with what surrounds me...
the day
I will
in it!


I received this bit of encouragement from a new friend....

I just read something and thought of you. "I believe revival has a face. It does look like something. It looks like love. It looks like stopping daily for the one in front of you and looking into his or her eyes. You have to see the one. If you can not see the one, you will not be able to deal with the multitudes. If you see the one, you will understand suffering, because you will see one dying child under a bridge. You will see one baby with AIDS. You will see one widow living alone under a tree. Revival is about looking into his or her eyes and seeing Jesus look back at you." - Heidi Baker, iris Ministries

This my dear friends is where lives can be changed..including your own!