Angel Tree Season!

Well, hello!

Long time no blog, right? I was a really active and consistent blogger in 2011, but since then I've slowly gone down hill. This is the first blog post I've written in a year! Yikes! But...I'm going to try to get back into it because it's really a great way to share information and advocate. 

First things first: exciting news! My Angel Tree baby from last year, sweet Hale, has FOUND A FAMILY!! I am seriously over the moon about this, and not just for the obvious reasons, but there's extra excitement because this is a first for me. I've been involved with Reece's Rainbow since the very beginning of 2011, so just about 4 years, and this is the first of any of the children I've advocated for to find a family. Isn't that crazy? And sad. A lot of this is because in my first 2 years, all of "my" babies were in R (it just happened that way!) and then the ban was instituted. Which is, of course, devastating, especially for Suzanne, because I talked to more than one family with interest in her over the years and I think she would've found her family very soon. The same for my boys, Dmitri & Niles. Anyway, last Angel Tree, I was a warrior for both Hale and Jasper. So, it's super exciting to see a boy a love and have advocated for find a family. I can't wait to figure out who they are and see Hale thriving at home next year! 

This year, I was really torn about which child to warrior for. I decided to wait a bit to choose because I'd really be happy to advocate for any of them. Hale found a warrior right away (yay!) and then I chose between Jasper and Artemur. Artemur had been one of my top choices last year, and he's also an older child, so I ultimately went with him! Oh, how I love this boy. How cute is he? It's so hard to believe he's 12 years old (13 in January)! These kids age out at 16, so that also means he has 3 years to find a family. Let's make it happen!
If you haven't signed up to be a warrior yet, PLEASE DO! Time is running out, as AT begins on November 1. There are over 70 kids who still need a warrior, and there is an extra sense of urgency this year because if all of the children don't find a warrior, they won't appear on the Angel Tree. It would be so upsetting to see so many lovely, deserving kids miss out on the biggest fundraising effort of the year because there aren't enough of us to step up! So please, sign up, and share AT with your friends and family! If you're looking for a child to warrior for, I highly recommend Jasper. He is amazing and at a disadvantage because he doesn't have a photo listing. However, his ornaments do have his photo on them, and he's absolutely adorable! It's definitely worth it to purchase one and be one of the few advocates who knows what he looks like (hint, hint...). Yay for AT season!


An Etsy Shop {My Latest Fundraising Endeavor}!

As you may know, graphic design has been a huge passion of mine for about 2.5 years now. I was very into blog design for a long while, but eventually I stopped because I was too busy with school, work, etc. Last year, on a hiatus from blog design, I came up with the idea to design prints and ope up a etsy shop. It was a better idea at first glance because it was less demanding--I could design prints whenever I had free time, so the print would be premade for people to buy, and I would just have to print and ship. I had 2-3 prints last November, but for whatever reason, I dropped the idea.

Then, this September, as I was trying to figure out what the best fundraiser I could do for Angel Tree would be, I came back to the etsy shop idea. I really, really wanted to do it. Even more than before. So, I got to work! I was glued to my computer for weeks, designing and designing to get a good amount of prints stocked in the shop. I figured out all the logistics (shipping, supplies, printing, etc. which all turned out to be a surprisingly huge obstacle!), and this week, I was finally able to open up shop!

I'm so excited to show you the fruits of all my time & energy:

My etsy shop, Light. Live. Do.! I'm very excited about it. I sell 8x10 art prints, and I'll be adding more and more as I go, but you can also contact me about a custom print design. Of course, the best part of it all is this--these prints have a purpose! 100% of profits from each sale are donated directly to Hale, my Angel Tree child. This will be my third year participating in AT, but this is the first year I've ever had a real way to fundraise. I've had many ideas each year, including a bake sale type thing (which I still really want to do, but probably won't be happening this year), but this is the first year I've followed any of them all the way through. I have high hopes, and I'm praying my shop will be very successful so that I can really help my little guy out!

Please go check it out and spread the word! Help make a difference for some beyond worthy kids this Christmas (& get a pretty print to hang on your wall while your at it)!



Make Me a Do-er.

The other night, I read James 1. It's one of my all-time favorite Bible chapters, so if you haven't read it...seriously, go do it.

The part of that chapter that really, really stood out to me the other night was verses 22-25.

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. {James 1:22-25 NIV}

Don't fool yourself into thinking that you are a listener when you are anything but, letting the Word go in one ear and out the other. Act on what you hear! Those who hear and don't act are like those who glance in the mirror, walk away, and two minutes later have no idea who they are, what they look like. But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God—the free life!—even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action. {James 1:22-25 The Message}

And that's when it hit me: I want to be a do-er.

A mover and a shaker. 

A person could read the entire Bible through & listen to sermons galore but never really do anything in the end.

Doing is so important to me. Actually doing something matters.

You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. {Matthew 7:16 NLT}

Actions speak louder than words, it's true. Anyone can say they want to do something great for God, but how many actually do?

I'm so guilty of "letting the Word go in one ear and out the other". I'll read a Bible verse and think, "Wow, I just love this!"...but if I never actually make use of what it says, what was the point?

I like to think about doing. I like to write about doing. But I really don't "take action" very often. Or ever.

The Bible is supposed to be a manual for a life. The stuff written in it tells us how to live. Not how to write/talk/dream about living, but how to actually do it. And that's what God intended. For us to actually do the things He calls us to.

So... today, I'm calling you to action. Whatever you feel passionate about, DO it.

 The dictionary has 2 definitions for doer:

1. One who does something: a doer of evil deeds.

2. A particularly active, energetic person: a real doer in party politics.

Whatever you feel like your purpose is, live it out. Be energetic & truly passionate about it....it's your purpose, after all. Maybe you feel called to take action for orphans {see another verse from James 1...verse 27}. Maybe you simply want to take small steps everyday to become more like Jesus. That's something. Maybe your calling is to do something huge, maybe it's to do something small. I don't know, and it doesn't matter.

The Bible is full of calls to action. Make a difference for yourself, your community, and your kingdom by taking one on. Make a difference in this world. Be the change you're wanting to see {because yes, with God, you have that kind of power}.

Whatever it is, just do something. Start today, right now.

Be the doer God created you to be.