Thursday, September 29, 2011

250 Days and $780 To Go!

The countdown continues, only 250 days to go! I'm getting close to reaching my goal, I'm only short $780!

I want to take a moment to thank everyone who has purchased a tshirt to help fund my trip! You are all wonderful and I cant thank you enough! I wish I could name you all individually, but that would be a LONG blog! lol So THANK YOU a million times over, I appreicate each and every one of you!
If you haven't purchased a shirt, I STILL have some and I would LOVE to sell them all! :)

I also want to thank those of you who have given generous donations to help support my trip:
*Jonathan Marquez, my brother from another mother, THANK YOU for always supporting everything that I do! Your heart is SO BIG and I am SO PROUD to call you a friend! I love you, buddy!
*Steven & Kelly Branch, you are both extraordinary people! I am so blessed to have such an amazing support system! THANK YOU so much for believing in me and funding my trip! I will never be able to repay you for your generosity!
*Bill & Ruth Bartlett, you two have to be the most generous and loving people on the face of the earth! I appreciate your donation to help get the flip flops to Africa! I cant thank you enough for everything that you have done to help me and Beau! We absolutely adore you! THANK YOU!!

I also want to thank everyone who has donated Flip Flops to send to the kids! I'm going to try to name you all, please let me know if I forget anyone!
Jessica Camarillo- You're a saint! You gave over 100 flip flops and I cant wait to show you pictures from my trip!
Mars (my sister)
Tiffany Burgess
Jane Bartlett
Yvette Wright
Kerrie McCullough
Traci McClead

I know more are on the way from Emersyn Harris, John Gavin (from Tiddies Sandles) and Makayla Lewis as well!
Keep them coming!! We are almost to 200 Pairs!!!

I appreciate all of your support!

Please don't forget about mine and Lacey's Yard Sale on October 15th in Round Rock! We have A LOT of great stuff! If you have anything you would like to donate please contact us!

I also wanted to share a link with you- This is a fellow Austinite that will be spending one month in Peru (I'm SO jealous)! He is chronicling his month long volunteer effort in Peru to help the destitute and sick Peruvian children and raise donations! He also has a facebook page if you'd like to stop by and see what he's up to!

So I leave you with this quote by Mother Teresa (because we should all strive to be more like her in my opinion!)

"We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop."

Stay Blessed,

Saturday, September 17, 2011

262 Days and $1,179 to Go!!

Today I wanted to give you a quote from Mocha Club's "I Need Africa More Than Africa Needs Me" campaign, but I had a hard time finding just one piece of it to show those who have never read it. Therefore, below you will find the campaign in it's entirety. Please allow the words to soak in and marinate inside your heart. Perhaps after reading it you will find the same need to travel to Africa and experience this level of faith, love and grace for yourself.

I Need Africa More Than Africa Needs Me
When I think of Africa, the following images immediately come to mind: Starvation. AIDS. Child soldiers. Genocide. Sex slaves. Orphans. From there, my thoughts naturally turn to how I can help, how I can make a difference. "I am needed here," I think. "They have so little, and I have so much." It's true, there are great tragedies playing out in Africa everyday. There is often a level of suffering here that is unimaginable until you have seen it, and even then it is difficult to believe. But what is even harder is reconciling the challenges that many Africans face with the joy I see in those same people. It's a joy that comes from somewhere I cannot fathom, not within the framework that has been my life to this day.

The images spilling out of my television showed circumstances that could seemingly only equal misery, and I was fooled. I bought into the lie that circumstance defines happiness. The truth is, in Africa I find hearts full of victory, indomitable spirits. In places where despair should thrive, instead I find adults dancing and singing, and children playing soccer with a ball crafted of tied up trash. Instead of payback, I find grace. Here, weekend getaways are not options to provide relief from the pains of daily life. Relationships and faith provide joy. Love is sovereign.

My new reality… I know now that my joy should have no regard for my circumstances. I'm ashamed by my lack of faith, but at the very same moment I am excited by my new pursuit. I'm forced to redefine the meaning of having much or having little. I'm uneasy with the prospect of change and of letting go, but just the thought of freedom is liberating. I want what I have learned to trickle down from my head into my heart - I no longer want to need the "next thing" to have joy.

I'm not saying that Africa does not need our efforts. It absolutely does need our partnership. But for me, I've come to understand that I NEED AFRICA MORE THAN AFRICA NEEDS ME. Why? Because it is Africa that has taught me that possessions in my hands will never be as valuable as peace in my heart. I've learned that I don't need what I have and that I have what I need. These are just a few of this continent's many lessons. I came here to serve and yet I've found that I have so much to learn, and Africa, with all its need, has much to teach me.

In 262 Days I will leave for Africa. To try to express in words how excited I am is impossible, there are no words. I cannot wait to get there! I'm halfway to my fundraising goal! Our Flip Flop campaign has over 200 flip flops that will be traveling with me. I only wish that you could go too.

All my love,