Monday, October 31, 2011

The Sweetest Little Ballerina

I think Halloween could possibly be the strangest holiday to celebrate when you've just returned home from a country riddled with extreme poverty and preventable disease.  However, I did enjoy watching my sweetie have fun. This was her first "trick-or-treat" experience and she definitely loved it. Up until about 15 minutes before we left the house, we weren't sure what she was going to "be". I had intended on making her an owl costume before I left but time got away from me. Instead we decided that she could choose from one of the 10 or so outfits in her dress up collection. None of them sounded fun to her until I mentioned ballerina! That made her ears perk up and she started dancing around immediately. So, Ballerina it was!

My mom, Luke and I all took her to a local church to play a few games to kick off the night. It was packed, but she still had a great time playing the games.
We saw her sweet friend, Will, while we were there. Is he not the cutest little fireman you've ever seen? His mom made that costume!
After the fall festival, we went to my brother's house to take all of the girls trick or treating around their neighborhood. Cinderella, the fairy and the little ballerina were the cutest little bunch together.
We attempted group shots, but this was about the best I could do!

And then they were off!

It was so fun hearing Madelyn say, "trick or treat" all the way up to the door and then when they opened it, saying it ten times louder!

I'm home!

It was a sweet reunion to hug my precious husband and baby girl's neck on Saturday evening. I missed their touch while I was away and still can't believe that I, who had never left Madelyn for more than 36 hours, managed to be away for 11 days and not be a mess while I was gone. I should be able to believe it though, because I know I was right where God wanted me to be.

I have thousands of pictures and even more words floating around in this head of mine that I want to jot down before I forget, but I just don't know where to start. I think it will take me the next month to get them all out. However, the one thing that I can't seem to put off is the answer to the question the van driver who picked us up from the airport asked; "What is the one thing that you will always think about when you think about this trip?'

Luke and I have been involved with PCM for about two years now. We have sponsored and volunteered and told just about anyone who will listen  how much we love what they are doing in Uganda, Africa. When Luke went in January, it became more personal to us. He had met the boy that we give $35 a month to so that he can be educated, clothed, fed and loved on by the PCM staff. He met the teachers, pastors, many secondary students and saw first hand many of the things that we had only heard about before. Then it was my turn to go. I knew that I would love being there, but I really wrestled with whether I should go. Whether my money would have had more of an impact as a donation to the new school building.  

I thought that seeing it all through their blogs and pictures and my husband's eyes from his trip, was enough and that my going was somewhat selfish. 

Then I went.

And I too met Emmanuel and his precious sister, Patience (who is also already sponsored).

The time I spent with these two is time I will hold near to my heart and time I hope to experience again. During one of our conversations, I asked them if they liked going to school there. Of course, they said yes. Then, I asked what was the best part about going to school there. Patience's quiet response was this...
We were hungry before. We eat now. We are children here.
To the van driver who picked us up at the airport, that is the one thing that I will always remember about this trip. It took me going there to hear it. It took me going there to have a deeper understanding of the good work Parental Care Ministries is doing in the lives of over 1,000 children in Uganda.

I will always remember her response. It has made the passion inside of me for Parental Care Ministries and what God is using them to do more personal. He used it to show me once again, in a more intimate way the importance of caring for orphans and needy children. The importance of sponsorship.

I had about 20 emails from friends, family and strangers who read this blog while I was gone that asked me about sponsorship through Parental Care Ministries. Did I think it was worth it? Is the money going to where they say it's going? Would I recommend them as an organization?




So, take a look. Patience's words should be all that it takes to convince you if you are able.

We were  hungry before. We eat now. We are children here.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Welcome to Texas!

We had some special people with us on our flight home! I am so excited for how God is going to use them while they are here! Welcome to Texas, Pastor Emmy and Supermom!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Saturday With GiGi

This weekend my parents came in to town to help me out with MK and to do some work at the house we will be moving to when Kathryn gets back from Africa. So while my Dad and I got after painting the new house, GiGi and MK went to Moore Farm's Pumpkin Patch. Kathryn and I are blessed with really great parents that love Jesus and love us really well. I love seeing my parents (aka GiGi and PaPa) with Madelyn. They have so much fun with her. They spoil her like crazy. They are leaving an incredible legacy for MK. So Here are a few pictures that GiGi took on her fun day with MK.

When GiGi and MK finished they went to one of my mom's friends house to visit her name is Becky and MK decided instead of Becky she wanted to call Becky Mickey Mouse. MK loved playing at Mickey Mouse's house and playing with her doll house. 

MK had a really great weekend with GiGi and PaPa!

MK & Luke

Monday, October 24, 2011

Where is Mommy?

Just a little conversation I had with MK in the car.

MK & Luke

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Insta-Friday on a Sunday

Just want to let everyone know (because I know this has been burning in your minds). MK and I are surviving. Or to put it better MK is surviving with daddy taking care of her. It has been a really fun week. We sure miss the pretty lady around here but Madelyn's teeth are getting brushed and I haven't lost her yet. 

Kathryn has been doing something that I love here on the blog at the end of the week; she puts together a little post of all of her Instagram pictures. I love the little moments that she captures with MK so I thought I would share some the ones from our week.
On Wednesday she would not let go of her mommy before she left for Africa. MK sure loves her momma.

Mornings with MK are so sweet. She wakes up and with her head leaning she will say with a half smile good morning da. She is such a sweet young lady. 

Mommy left us a really cool calender of cards and ideas for the week one them was a coupon to TCBY for 3 free ounces of yogurt. So MK and I headed out for a yogurt date on Friday. We packed it full of White Choclate Macadamia Nut yogurt, Cheesecake yogurt and White Chocolate Mousse yogurt and topped with strawberries, cherries, reese's peanut butter cups and mini m&m's.

She loved the sweets and digging for the m&m's

 She may be going into a sugar coma...
 ...or not she took off dancing on a beautiful friday afternoon.
On Friday night MK's Grandma wanted to hang out with her so I could get some packing done at our house. MK loves doll houses. 

The Pretty Lady is 8 hours ahead of us. I don't think she minded that I sent her a text message at 4:16am.

On the way to church this morning there was this beautiful rainbow. It was perfect timing. I was praying for Kathryn that God would continue to keep her safe and protect while she is Uganda. God just reminded me the whole way there that He is for us. It reminded of Psalm 121:1-2
  I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
  My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth.

I can't wait to capture some more special moments with my little princess. 

MK & Luke

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Friday, October 21, 2011

$35 per month

So we have made it and just experienced our first full day on the ground in Uganda! A lot happened between when my husband and sweet girl dropped me off on Wednesday morning to see me on my way and now.

But the one thing that keeps playing in my mind like a slide show are these eyes and faces and sweet little feet:

I look forward to more time to write after processing it all.

However right now all I can think to say is that for $35 per month you can provide a child with food, clothing, a Christian education and for most a place to live. More than that you can provide them with the parental love and care that so many of them are lacking.

I've witnessed first hand the love they are shown, the care they are given and seen the smiles that all of it produces.

Consider it and while you are, scroll through the names and faces of those waiting for a sponsor at

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