Red, White and Do (July: DIFO Project)

Over dinner, when we pray for a different country from the book, Window On The World, my kids ask the same question, “Is the country we’re praying for free?”

They may not understand politics or the reason we have troops stationed all over the world, but they know freedom.

My kids understand that we have freedom to speak and worship as we please because we are Americans.

And while I might not agree with our current government, I’m proud to be an American and I thank God for our service men and women.

Can I encourage you to remember them this weekend?

Buy a special edition military Bible for $4.99, write a personal note of thanks and Lifeway Bible bookstore will get it into the hands of a US soldier. Don’t have a Lifeway near you? Order a military Bible online.

Red

White

And Do.

July Do-It-For-Other Project: Help Wounded American Soldiers

This is from the wife of a wounded soldier:

“My husband was wounded in Iraq on January 26, 2005.  He sustained permanent shrapnel injuries to his face, right leg and knee, leftshoulder and arm, and right hand.  He also has a traumatic brain injury from the blast and post-traumatic stress disorder from the ordeal.
Wounded veterans leaving the current theaters of operation in Iraq and Afghanistan are evacuated to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. This hospital is the first landing place where they are operated on and begin their treatment and rehabilitation. Many are brought there with literally nothing.  The clothes that were on their backs were cut off in the theater to check for wounds before they were evacuated first by helicopter and then by plane.  Their gear often fails to make the trip with them or was so badly damaged it is no longer able to be used.
Imagine that is your husband, your brother, your son.  Imagine that’s someone YOU loved sitting in that hospital room alone.  If he has a buddy there, he wishes he didn’t, because they’re both there for the same reason.  For his family to arrive, it’s an 8+ hour flight from America and many can’t afford to make the trip or aren’t prepared for it.  He’s as alone as he’ll ever be in his life at a time when he should never have to feel alone.

Granted, we can’t just reach out and give him a hug but we CAN make a difference.  When my husband arrived at Landstuhl the generosity of strangers made that wait until I could get there so much easier.  He was given clothes that had been donated, model cars to put together and paint, and cards from across the country of people showing their support and telling him that his sacrifice was appreciated.”

Here’s what WE can DO (send the following items):

Burger King Gift Certificates
International Calling Cards
Sweatsuits (small to x-large)
Athletic Shoes (men’s 9-12, women’s 6-9)
Men’s and Women’s fall and winter jackets (med to x-large)
Backpacks, Gym Bags, and Small Suitcases (something to store their
clothes in)
DVDs to put in the hospital wards for them to watch

If you don’t know what to send but want to do more, checks are also accepted made out to: IMA-E CTOF-WW

Mail ANY of this to:

Landstuhl Regional Medical center
Wounded Warrior Ministry Center
CMR 402
APO AE  09180

Please note that shipping to an APO AE address is IDENTICAL to shipping rates for New York.  You can use flat rate packages to ship large amounts of cards.

Leave a comment ONLY if you are able to send something during the month of July to support our American soldiers, wounded in battle, keeping us FREE.

P.S. I’m sending out hundreds of pillowcases to seamstresses early next week! I will update y’all with the totals on dresses in early August-I think we might be close to 300!! We aren’t collecting supplies anymore, but we are accepting completed dresses until the end of July. You can get more details about that project here.

(Have a safe and happy 4th of July…I’ll see y’all on Monday!)

DIFOP-Update on Pillow Case Dresses

We are at the half way point in collecting supplies for this wonderful project for little African girls.

I am simply overwhelmed at your generosity! Please continue to send in pillow cases and supplies until the end of June. I don’t think we can make too many! New goal: 200 dresses

Received so far:

95 pillowcases (+plus a lot of flat sheets/fabric)

11 completed dresses

$225 for shipping to 15+ seamstresses both ways

14 spools of ribbon, 15 packs of bias tape, 7 packages of elastic, 20 spools of thread.

PLEASE make sure I receive your donations before July 1st. I will be undertaking the huge job of dividing out supplies/mailing the first week of July to give our seamstresses time to make the dresses.

I’ve heard from several that you are making groups with your homeschool kids and churches!! Please make sure the dresses are completed by mid-July, so they can be counted in the total.

(If you are a seamstress, I will be contacting you soon. Please feel free to let me know if you can make these dresses w/ribbon only, bias tape, only or elastic only or ALL THE ABOVE, so I can send you the right supplies in July).

xoxo to all of you!

DIFOP: Using Pillow Cases to Dress the Poor

[The deadline for me to receive items for the Do-It-For-Others NICU project for Hailey’s Hope is Monday. Thanks to all who were involved in this special project. At last count there have been more than FIFTY preemie outfits mailed in!]

I am SO excited to tell you about our newest project that will actually be for June and July: pillow case dresses for little girls in Africa!

IF YOU DON’T/CAN’T SEW———>PLEASE KEEP READING!!!

One of my readers suggested this project and directed me to Little Dresses for Africa. This is a wonderful non-profit organization that is providing simple, sweet dresses for children in Central Africa, hit hard by the AIDS epidemic. Many of these children are orphans cared for by sibling and sometimes clothes are a luxury.  This organization also holds classes during the dress distribution to educate the kids on sanitation, nutrition and family skills.

I was a little worried about the sewing part of this project because I want these DIFO projects to be easy enough for whole families to get involved. And every time I attempt sewing, I break a needle or I trip on something (that last part is probably totally unrelated). So, I asked Twitter for help. I was simply overwhelmed with the response of 15 seamstresses who are donating their time and skill to create dresses from the pillowcases we collect in June!

Our goal: ONE-HUNDRED dresses!!

A special thanks to the seamstresses:

Sweetie Berry, MollyFulton, My Blessed Life, Joy in the Journey, Mommy Daily Vent, robinvisbal, Amy_G, Parris Ponderings, Smock Lady, My Soul Reflects, One Stitch Rachel, Signing Charity, Little Miss Random, Troop Petrie, Shouting for HaOur Life Upstaestate, Beth Sew Anyhow, Cheerios UnderFoot, Angie.

June 1-30 PILLOW CASE/MATERIALS DRIVE

We need 100+ new or lightly used pillowcases!!

July 1-31  SEAMSTRESSES MAKE DRESSES/MAIL

Items you can send for this project:

  • New or gently used pillow cases
  • Double bias tape
  • 1/2 inch elastic
  • thread
  • air tight vacuum space bags
  • money to help with shipping (I will be dividing supplies and shipping to seamstresses. I will also provide them with a postage-paid envelope to mail completed dresses to the organization).

If you sew and would like to complete your own pillow case dress(es), please send them to the address below. If you can make your own dresses, please note that you DO NOT have to use actual pillow cases, elastic, bias tape, etc. Make them in your own unique way and they WILL be sent to Africa! Here is the dress pattern that the organization suggests.

You can mail these items to:

We are THAT family

8000 Research Forest Dr. Ste. 115-110

Spring, TX 77382

Please ONLY leave a comment if you are able to contribute in some way (every little bit counts!)

DIFOP-Mothers Give Back to NICUS

By far, one of the most challenging and emotionally barren seasons of my life was giving birth to my premature daughter. My third baby spent three weeks in the NICU (neo natal intensive care unit) and it was a roller coaster with high highs and low lows.
Every Christmas we return to remember and honor the people who saved our daughter’s life. We also empathize with the exhausted, new parents on their long and frightening NICU journey.

In honor of Mother’s Day and our new Do-It-For-Others project, I am pleased to introduce you to a brand new organization, Hailey’s Hope, born out of a grief most of us will never know. Kristin, Hailey’s mom, lost her precious daughter in January this year when she was just 36 days old. She has turned her sorrow into a beautiful testimony and ministry in her baby’s honor by blessing other NICU families with special gift bags.

The gift bags for NICU parents provide a gentle touch of comfort during a difficult time.
What we are collecting to add to gift bags (ITEMS MUST BE NEW):
  • Stuffed animals, stuffed rattles, stuffed animals w/small blankies attached
  • Preemie clothes-boy, girl and unisex (most Dept. stores carry preemie clothes, including WalMart)
Please let me know BY COMMENTING if you think your family can send an item!
Some of you can send a lot, some only a little. Please consider sending something (I will collect the items the month of May and send one large box to Hailey’s Hope).
We are THAT family
8000 Research Forest Dr. Ste. 115-110
Spring, TX 77382

Deadline for this project is June 1st. If you can participate, I have a treat for you, please visit my community for a chance to win something special for yourself or Mom on Mother’s Day!

DIFOP-Christmas Jars:An Idea for All Year Long

As I took ornaments down from the tree on New Year’s Day back in January, my toddler wandered in the room.

“Mommy, what you doing?”
I reached on tip toes, answering, “I’m taking the ornaments off. It’s time to put away our Christmas tree.”
I’m not sure what my 3 year old heard exactly, but the next thing I knew she was WAILING, and blocking the tree with her BODY, screaming “Noooo!!! I want Christmas!”
Well. That was unexpected.
I felt like the murderer of Christmas as I pried ornaments from her chubby fingers.
But Christmas doesn’t have to end. (Even if you were ready for it to). Have you ever heard the book Christmas Jars?
Our family loves the idea behind this book: Collect spare coins and loose change in a jar all year long and on the week of Christmas deliver the jar to someone’s front door! Keep it a secret and quietly celebrate making a difference with your family!
I found a clearance jar at Target and we’ve already started!
I think this would be a great Do It For Others Project (DIFOP)! So, grab a jar, put it in a high traffic area in your house and designate loose change and spare dollar bills to it. We have one rule with our jar: ONCE MONEY GOES IN-IT CAN’T COME OUT (in other words, we can’t use it when we hear the ice cream truck!)
In December, we’ll share the who/how/why of our Christmas Jars!
Are you in? (that means Yo, leave a comment if you are)!
*Updated* I’ll be randomly choosing a commenter to win a copy of the book Christmas Jars! Congrats to the random book winner, Kristin of this Sweet Country Life!