Saturday, July 31, 2010

Happy Campers

For a few months now we have been taking a refugee family from Rwanda to church with us. We have made a great connection. We help them out adjusting to life in America, and the mother of the family braids Sitota's hair- works for me! (if you are a white mother of an African child, you will understand of weight of this gift!)

We have been hoping to get the teens in this family off to the high school summer camp (this would be their first exposure to youth group!), and this past week, they went! This is a huge victory! I picked them up at the church last night after a week of praying that they would not only meet friends, but that they would meet Jesus- and God is so faithful- all this happened and more.

Did I mention how fun it was to hear the happy cries of teenage girl in my backseat telling me all about how she saw a horse for the first time, how everybody at camp was so nice to her, that the camp nurse was from Kenya, about rafting, swimming, horseback riding, worship and how she now knows Jesus is real? Did I tell you how incredible it was to hear that her painfully shy brother stood up the second to last night of camp and prayed aloud in Swahili?

I am in awe. Thank you to everyone who helped these teens get to camp. They are forever changed and so am I.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Our Good God

This is how good God is:

Carter not only qualified for a full-time teacher's aide (he starts kindergarten in a few weeks), but the aide is a wonderful woman that goes to our church and has literally prayed for Carter since the day he was born. We had nothing to do with this process, God just worked it out.

God is good all the time, all the time, God is good.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Please Pray for Our Adoption

If you are inspired to do something for the orphan today, would you please pray that we receive our I-800 approval? This is the sticking point of our adoption these days. Once we have this approval, we can get our court date and bring our daughter home! This approval is taking much longer than we had anticipated.

Thank you so much!
I found this quote on my friend Jane's facebook page and it just inspired me (like I need any more inspiration- most days I am bursting with it!).

"The woman is at the heart of the home. Let us pray that we women realize the reason for the our existence: to love and be loved and through this love become instruments of peace in the world."

Mother Theresa.

Gluten Free Chocolate Zucchini Muffins

This is the perfect way to use up all that zucchini from your garden!

2 cups sorghum flour or gf all purpose flour mix
1.5 teaspoons xanthan gum
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup applesauce
3 cups shredded unpeeled zucchini
3/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat to 350 deg
Spray two 8 inch loaf pans or two 12 cup muffin tins

Place four, xanthan gum, salt, baking soda, and cocoa powder in medium bowl. Use wire whisk to combine.

In large bowl, place oil, sugars, eggs, and vanilla. Mix with hand mixer until fluffy. Stir in applesauce and shredded zucchini. Stir in flour mixture until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips.

Divide batter and bake for 50 minutes for loaves or 25-30 minutes for muffins or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Allow to cool on wire rack for 10 minutes before turning out.


Tuesday, July 27, 2010

“My whole life I have been complaining that my work was constantly interrupted, until I discovered the interruptions were my work.” ~~ Henri Nouwen

Okay, I am still discovering this truth. As my patience wears a little thinner as summer break goes on, I am going to remember this. I am going to embrace these "interruptions" for what they are- my job! Not just a duty, but a chance to show love, compassion, grace to the ones I love the most.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The school situation in the town of Ziway, Ethiopia is very inadequate. Many children simply do not have the opportunity to attend school at any level or in any facility. The government schools are overcrowded with up to 75 students per classroom. Private schools tend to be somewhat better, but usually have 40-50 students per class. Whether private or public, the schools are lacking in even the basics. Students must share textbooks and cannot take their textbooks home. Even standard items such as chalk and pencils are in short supply and must be severely rationed.

The caregivers and children recognize the value of a good education. They know that education is critical to their obtaining good employment and providing for themselves and their families. Therefore, it is a priority to Lifesong for Orphans to construct a quality grade school as quickly as possible. One of the essential ways to pull Ethiopia out of its poverty is to educate its citizens.


We all go out of our ways to give our kiddos the very best we possibly can. In Ethiopia, this looks very different than it does for you and me in the US!

Lifesong for Orphans is supporting 3 schools in the Ziway, Ethiopia area. We are currently repairing one of the schools and are in the process of building another, but are hopeful to use all three this fall.

As you start gathering school supplies for your kids, would you consider helping the children in Ziway?

We are in need of new desks, lights, and fixtures!


Current supply shelves:

Current ‘desks’:

New desks needed:

Make a donation here and indicate ‘Ethiopia school needs’ in the description.

To stay up to date on the progress, check back here.

If you are going to walk this crazy and oh so rewarding road of living on a single income, I strongly suggest you don't do it alone! Make friends with others living the same way!

Your fellow friends at home are the ones who can encourage you, commiserate with you and remind you why you are living this way. When your washer breaks and you have zero dollars in your emergency account, your friend will be the first one to let you use her washer, scour the community for deals and help you stick to your budget. This is not the time for expense account Sally to point out how much she adores her new front loader! You need the friend who can share with you her recipe for homemade laundry soap!

Your husband in the workplace also needs a similar buddy. Someone to eat his brown bag lunch with, someone to teach him how to change his own oil, and someone who is impressed with his budgetary prowess.

And, when you have these friends over for dinner, you can truly enjoy one another's company instead of trying to impress them with fancy food and Pottery Barn decorating. These are the friends you invite for dessert only when times are tight, or a taco buffet where everybody brings something. There is such relief in this type of gathering! Such honesty! No one needs to be entertained, but we all need friendship and hospitality.

Here's to friends!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

I'll be back to posting about living on a single income soon, but I wanted to share this great post with my readers today. It is about being "yes mom". I hope you appreciate it as much as I did: