Monday, August 31, 2009

Today’s Art Project

Yesterday, I read a post on That Artist Woman where she featured a really neat looking art project called Stained Glass On Paper.  I decided that it looked like a project my girls would really enjoy, so last night I explained the method to them and let them choose a design and lay down the glue outlines.

 

HPIM1607

Kaya designed a building on a hill with a sunset nearby.

 

HPIM1606

Nico decided on a still life sort of scene on a picnic table with a tablecloth.

We let the glue dry overnight which was a good idea because some of the glue that came out thick on Kaya’s picture was still tacky this morning.

After we finished with the day’s learning, the girls got out the watercolors to fill in their designs.

HPIM1608

HPIM1609

HPIM1610  Kaya’s completed picture. I love the colors around the setting sun.

HPIM1613

HPIM1614

HPIM1615

Nico’s completed picture.  The tablecloth is so vibrant!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

First Letter from Precious

Naptime has allowed me to scan in our first letter from Precious and a drawing she sent.

scan0003

I was told that the part about her being “used to red and white clothes” is probably a reference to her school uniform.  The translations can be different and while English is the general language of Ghana, there are different dialects in different regions. Also, we were initially told that she lives with her Grandmother, but that living situations can change from month to month with the houses being so flimsy and different times of the year being  harder to survive.  Sometimes the children are passed from family member to family member.

scan0004

Guilty of Blog Neglect

The Autumnal changes that I am sensing have sparked me to start the Fall Decluttering and Cleaning a bit early.  Slowly, the leaves are starting to show their Fall colors and there’s a briskness that occasionally dances through the open windows.  With the changing seasons, I usually feel an urgency to prepare the Winter nest and squeeze in the last of the Summer fun while I can.  I am setting the goal to donate at least 10 garbage bags of “stuff” to the local thrifts within the next month and already have 4 packed and ready to go. I also hope to weed out a few boxes of stuff that are in the storage room and consolidate what we’re keeping.

The past week has been full of emotions for us.  On Thursday during Bible Study, we learned that the Pastor of our small church and his wife had decided to leave.   This came as quite a shock to many of us and goes against some things that were said recently.  Our church is very small and humble, with a low attendance but a strong bond.  Just a few weeks ago, our Pastor told us that he’d keep the church going as long as it could go, so when the news broke it left almost all of us full of questions.  He said, that Thursday, that they would stay with the church until the last Sunday in November.

The next day, a family from our church lost nearly everything when an early morning fire consumed their home. More shock, but out church family pulled together to help out as much as we could. Thankfully they family members all got out without injury although they lost some precious family pets and prized possessions.

On Sunday, our Pastor broke the news of his resignation at the end of the service. While we all tried to process the news right afterwards, the Pastor and his wife walked out and I have no clue if they’ll ever return. There are so many questions going around.  For myself, it brings up a lot of emotions that I went through as a child when my father left. The questions and feelings of abandonment are similar enough to leave me feeling “off” and emotional. This has all been a lot to process and I have been praying for peace within myself and my family.

On a positive note, we received our first letter from our Compassion International sponsor child.  Little Precious from Ghana sent us a letter (that she dictated to an assistant working for Compassion) and a simple drawing.  This letter brought me so much giddiness, and I will try to scan it in and post about within a day or so.

If you are so inclined, please pray for our small church in these coming days.  We were the Calvary Chapel if Jerusalem in Penn Yan, NY, but will probably lose that name if we cannot find a replacement Pastor soon.

HPIM1596

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Happy Birthday, Luna Blue!

Our “baby” is three today and I can’t believe how fast she’s growing up. I made a little slideshow that you can view here.

“Isn't she pretty,
Truly the angel's best.
Boy, I'm so happy,
We have been heaven blessed.
I can't believe what God has done.
Through us he's given life to one,
But isn't she lovely made from love….”

HPIM1544

Friday, August 14, 2009

Our New Compassion Kids!

I posted about Compassion International last month when we received the information about our sponsor child, Precious, from Ghana. It is a *wonderful* organization and you can learn more about it by visiting the website at Compassion International.

While our family in not in the place where we can financially sponsor any more children, you can contact CI and get connected with “Correspondence Children”, those who have been sponsored but do not receive regular mail from the people or companies that sponsor them. In so many cases, these children get just as much out of frequent letters from people miles, countries away, who care enough to send some happiness through the postal service. You can send letters, stickers, coloring pages, thin paperback books, and other fun paper items. There are regulations about what you can send, but it still leaves room for many wonderful treats to raise the spirits of these children who face challenging lives. In return, you will receive letters and drawings from your Correspondence Children.

I decided to take on two more kids and we got the information sheets on them earlier in the week.

yolanda

This is Yolanda from Guatemala. She is seven and she lives with her Mother and 3 other siblings. Look at that face, isn’t she adorable?

rodrigo

And this little guy is Rodrigo from Bolivia. He’s also seven and he lives with his Mother and Father and 3 siblings. Talk about cute!

Some have asked why many of the children have the same stiff stance and are not smiling for their Compassion pictures. I have read that the day these children and their families travel to meet with the folks that work for Compassion is a very big deal. Most of the children haven’t been in front of a camera before or had so much attention focused on them. There’s a mix of nerves, excitement and anticipation going through them on the big day. What I see in these pictures are simply beautiful children whom I love at first sight.

I have been writing to our girl Precious for over a month and have sent out 3 envelopes to her. A few days ago I arranged the first envelopes for Yolanda and Rodrigo and I hope that they bring them joy and happiness when they arrive.

If you remember, please pray for these beautiful children and their families. There are hundreds of children waiting at this very moment to become sponsored through Compassion International. Please consider sponsoring a child!

Edited to add: I just saw that someone stumbled upon my blog searching for "things to send to compasison child" and if you come back (reader from Georgia) I think you might find this link helpful.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Our Fun Day at Seabreeze

At least once every Summer, we like to make the trip up to Seabreeze Amusement Park north of Rochester. It is a fairly small park, but I prefer it over the other somewhat nearby park, Darien Lake. Seabreeze is small enough to keep you from being entirely beat by the end of the day, plus there are many large trees all over the park which provide shade from the Summer sun. While they do have some modern rides, they also have some “vintage” rides that I remember enjoying when I was little.

Now, on with the pictures!

HPIM1444

Luna was big enough this year to ride the mini roller coaster and she had so much fun!

 

HPIM1445

They have a mini version of the Yo-Yo, which Kaya claimed herself to be to big for, but Luna was happy on them!

 

HPIM1448

Wheeeeeee!

 

HPIM1452

Sometimes it takes looking at a picture to realize just how big our girls are getting.  Kaya is 7 now and growing up too fast!

 

HPIM1454

Kaya was big enough to go on all of the “big kid” rides this year.  She was a little apprehensive before the Music Express started, but she was squealing with delight when it entered warp speed.

 

HPIM1458

There’s a collection of kiddie rides in a shady part of the park and Luna rode them all several times.

 

HPIM1459

She made friends with a little girl while in line for the cars, so they cruised together.

 

HPIM1460

Nico wasn’t able to come with us this year, so my Mom stepped in as a willing substitute.  Kaya holds on for dear life while riding the Music Express with Gramma.

 

HPIM1461

Hold on, Kaya!!  This ride goes *really* fast!

 

HPIM1462

No trip to Seabreeze is complete without a few rides on the carousel.

 

HPIM1464

Kaya was really good at a Squish the Spider game in the arcade.

 

HPIM1465

Luna was happy just to go around pushing buttons and pretending to drive the racecar games.  No quarters needed!

 

HPIM1467

Kaya and Grandma rockin’ out on the Sea Dragon.

 

HPIM1468

Now, this was good for a laugh.  Jay made some enemies while on the Bumper Cars.  Some people were giving him dirty looks for bumping them.  Hello, people.  You are on the BUMPER cars!  If you were looking for Drive Around in a Circle and Not get Bumped Cars, check out the kiddie rides. 

 

HPIM1470

While they do have a whole bunch of big water slides, the girls were happy as clams spending time on the little slides.  Kaya was so helpful, watching over Luna when she got to the bottom.

 

HPIM1471

We stayed until the park closed at 10:00pm and for the last few hours, Luna walked around like a zombie but would not give in to sleeping in the stroller.  She was out like a light before we even made it to the expressway on the way home.