Monday, April 27, 2009

compassion in kolkata

I have discussed Compassion International here in the past. They are an amazing international organization that does work with impoverished children. They spread the Gospel of Jesus and they assist the child and the family in ways that are desperately needed, like school fees and clothing and food and medical help. The assistance that they offer varies from project to project and from need to need. What is amazing is what they do for these people. What YOU can do for them as well. Compassion works largely on sponsorships and what that means is that people like you and me will sponsor a child and the money that you pay each month helps that child with their needs. Knowing that someone out there cares enough to do this is huge!

What was surprising to me though was how much just having a real life person sponser them means to them. They know that someone cares. Someone believes in them. Someone LOVES them. When the children are reading the letters that are sent to them and seeing the pictures it is enough to boost their self esteem to the point where they can see the outside of the poverty stricken area they are living in. It lets them dream and dream big!

It really is amazing what $32 a month can do.

I spend that same amount every month for just one of my children to take gymnastics lessons once a week for an hour.

Just an hour a week.

When Compassion takes that same amount do you see what they can do?! It amazes me everyday.

The amazement doesn't cease... I have read accounts and read accounts of the poverty and the desperation in these places. I have seen the pictures and have f0llowed bloggers as they went on the last two Compassion trips. They are doing a trip right now in which they take bloggers and they take them to Compassion sites in a country that Compassion works in and they show them what they do and the Compassion Bloggers will show the pictures and they will tell the story. This is a very effective way to spread the news of what Compassion does. It reaches so many people to let them know of this opportunity to reach out and be blessed... blessing your socks off kind of blessed!

If you would like to follow the Compassion Bloggers on this trip as they visit India, please check out the following links.

Angie @ Bring the Rain

Melissa @ The LPM Blog

Robin @ Pensieve

Anne @ Flowerdust

Pete @

Please consider sponsoring a child. It is a decision that I do not believe you will ever regret.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

my lovely template here on my blog...

I know that my template is rather "wintry." It is a problem for me. I haven't had issues switching out templates really, the problem is that right now my computer isn't letting me download new templates. It just isn't. I have no clue why, so please just join me in putting up with winter here on my blog.

I also know that I could just switch things around without a template, but frankly people I do not have time. At all. I am lucky when I can get on here and post a little post about birds and other nonsense.

Hopefully I will fix this before we are blown away by summer... and I am still freezing my heiney off here at just to name a few... icicles.

Friday, April 24, 2009

oddness and an eastern meadowlark

If I had told my friends in high school that one day I would be into bird watching I think they would have simply stared at me with shocked expressions... mouths agape. That would have been an appropriate response really.

Today however I am a very inexperienced bird watcher and the whole thing just snuck up on me.

Growing up I knew what a few of the basic birds were. I knew a robin and a sparrow and a blue jay and a cardinal and a Bald Eagle and umm... that may have been it. I knew OF many other birds but I am not sure if I could positively ID them if they landed in my yard and stared at me.

In the last few years the kids and I have started IDing more and more things. We had started IDing spiders often when we lived in OK cause we had some bad spider issues. I didn't want all spiders to die just the bad ones so I researched and researched until I knew many basic spiders and what many of their webs looked like and where they generally lived. I was driven to this out of desparation. I was scared to death of them and they were everywhere there. They really freaked me out and since the Air Force wasn't going to move us anytime soon I had to learn to live with the evil buggers.

After time we started IDing different insects and finding out more about them as well. I think much of this was initiated by gardening and my need for things to be Organic. I would figure out what type of insect was bothering my garden and then I would try to figure out the appropriate way to deal with it. This didn't always work and still doesn't but I figure that I can try.

In the more recent years we have started feeding birds in our backyard. I was able to tell the kids what many of the birds were like the ones that I mentioned above but when other birds started showing up that I didn't know and the kids asked me what they were I had a hard time telling them what they were. In the true homeschooling spirit I would simply stop what we were doing and look up the bird online and then we would know one more bird. We continued this until we knew a good list of birds that would visit our back yard. We would also see birds from afar and we would start looking them up when we got home. It made it easier when both of the kids and I would see the bird and then when we got home we would look it up online until we found it.

Today I will admit that I was quite excited when I was out at the farm and I spotted an Eastern Meadowlark. I have looked at this bird online and I knew it was fairly common, but we didn't have any in this field behind my house. I find this strange about myself and I find the whole thing rather odd. I mean... um... bird watching? I actually was excited to see an Eastern Meadowlark?! Really? My how times change.

Of course I also now get Star Wars jokes. I find that odd about myself as well. That however is a husband thing. You see, I took him for what he was a Sci-Fi geek and God Bless him, he has introduced me to all sorts of strange Sci-Fi. Someday I may recover.

Monday, April 6, 2009

pack?! who is next? quack?

Oh, I am sure many of you have gathered that I love books and I especially love children's books. I would have made a very happy children's librarian if God had not seen fit to give me the lovely job I currently have.

A favorite book of nearly every child I have known is Make Way for Ducklings and I just found that very story in the news. Unfortunately, one of the ducklings is missing.
Poor Pack got duckling-napped!

What can we do to help?! Well, I really have no idea what you can do to bring Pack back to the park, but I think that a good way to show support would be to run (yes run... you can do it) out to the nearest bookstore and buy a copy of Make Way for Ducklings. It has an amazing innate charm that kids love. Eveyone must know of some child who would love to own a copy of this fantastic book. We have one on our shelf and I think it is time to bring it out for reading tomorrow.

The only other way to help would be if say, you saw someone sneaking a large bronze statue of a duck into their house. That may clue you in to call the police. So everyone look out for wandering bronze ducks. Pack is missing. We need him home!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

things that make me pause and take note

I have honestly been coming up at a loss for what to put on this blog. Sad. The problem is that my life is wrapped up in my kids really and I won't post pictures of them online. So many of the time I just start writing a post and it ends up getting too long and then I don't have time to finish it and when I go back to read it and write more I have lost the main thought and I don't finish it.

This post will be fairly short.

I hope.

I read online probably too much, but I read and I can't help myself. I used to get my news fix in magazines and the TV but most of my news fix now comes from online sources. One of my favorite online sources is NPR. I used to listen to NPR all the time and I loved the mix that the NPR channel in Springfield MO gave me. They would have the classical music on interspersed with the awesome news shows and jazz piano and Car Talk and Prairie Home Companion... etc. Unfortunately here where we are now (sorry about my annoying vagueness) closer to a larger city we have multiple "NPR" stations but they are all specific. One is only talk, all news, all talk type stuff. Another is all classical music, but it has ads? And this station is still on the NPR website, but never advertises itself as NPR. Weird. Another station is all Jazz. I miss my all in one station. SO... I mainly just listen to the classical station because much of the news found, well... anywhere isn't appropriate for children to hear and the local news personalities annoyed me.

So, as I continue on writing my, ahem... short post... what I was trying to say in the above paragraph is that I no longer listen to NPR for news, I read it online at their site. Sometimes I also listen to it online it just depends on the story and what is going on in my world. Tonight what caught my attention was a story on pinhole cameras.

I vaguely remember studying the overall concept of pinhole cameras in school, but I don't think we actually made one. I am really interested in making one of these in the future with my kids.

The image has such a great look to it and honestly the picture is much better to my poor eyeballs then the cheap type kid safe digital cameras that they make. Those pictures make my eyes want to bleed. The fuzziness... the painfulness the annoyingness. I lose patience for those cameras very fast.

Perhaps we will try this during the summer months here. I have a feeling that we need some nice crisp light to get this to work well and summer sounds like the best time for us to experiment and play with light.


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