Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Gratituesday - remembering

The last couple of weeks have been hard for my family, we have lost 2 great uncles and another is in ICU for a heart attack, I don't know if he will survive.

In all this, it is important to remember Gratitude.
I am thankful for:
*Our great-uncle's lives, the blessing they were/are to our family
*For the family we still have with us
*How close our family are, that we can lean on each other
*For GPS (to get me to where the funerals are, they are about 90kms [60miles], I would so get lost if not for that)

30 days of giving - The End

Well, it is the end of November, which is the end of the 30 days of giving.

It has been a great month, I have realised how much giving I can do while out and about.

Oh, I forgot to mention about a couple of things I did... thinking.... "oh I must blog that" and I never did.

One of the main ones was the gift tree at my local Target. I took a label and bought a present and then handed it in. They are no longer handed in at the tree, apparently people STEAL them!!!!
I was shocked, but I am glad that the present I bought will go to the person it is meant to.

So here is to a future focus on giving

Monday, November 29, 2010

30 days of giving - around and about

30-Day Giving Challenge

I left some change in a vending machine, and a package of food in another (chips that I bought from that vending machine)

I left some books on a bench near the local library, with a note to enjoy the books

And I made a cake for my sister-in-law's birthday ( I only got asked the day before, normally I would say no as it takes me hours to decorate it)

Sunday, November 28, 2010

30 days of giving - to work and others

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I took a cake to my old work (I resigned to be a SAHM). I made it, thinking that it would be a nice surprise for them, to brighten my day.

Another way to give was I stayed outside to thank the mailman for his work, thinking that he wouldn't get thanked often.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

30 days of giving - to the kid's ministry

30-Day Giving Challenge

My mum volunteers at our church's kid's ministry. It is for a couple of hours each Friday, and she usually organises the craft activity. Which means a lot of prep work.

And today I am cutting out paper stars for her..... 180 down, 420 to go :)

Friday, November 26, 2010

30 Days of giving - Impromptu giving

30-Day Giving Challenge

My sister rang me asking me for a favour, she has 4 children, and the eldest (7) wears glasses. The glasses were broken during playing and she was wondering if I could take the eldest child to have her frames fixed.

I said yes, of course. And I took her to get the frames fixed.
The people at the optometrist said that it was going to be tricky to fix, so come back in 30 mins, so I walked around the shopping centre with a 7 year old and a 6 month old, and went back.
The frames broke during the attempt to fix it, so they had to go and get new frames, but had to wait to ask me to ask my permission..... and then I had to go away for another hour while they did that......

So, a simple errand took 1.5 hours, but at least my sister didn't have to wander around the shopping centre for that long with 4 kids, one who is sick.

So that is my giving today :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

30 days of giving - To my husband

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I wanted to make sure that I gave something to my husband.

So I spent about an hour making a list of things I love about him

Here is the (edited) list

Reasons I love you/what I love about you
  1. You married me

  2. you gave me Rona

  3. You take care of Rona when I need to sleep

  4. You put the bins out every week

  5. You refill my water each night

  6. You listen to me when I talk to you

  7. You think I am funny

  8. You think I am beautiful

  9. You aren't afraid to make decisions

  10. You are great at drumming

  11. You are really good at buying gifts

  12. You go to work every day, even when you don't want to

  13. You pwn n00bs

  14. You are generous with your time and money, to me, to our families and our friends

  15. You love me

  16. You put up with me, even when I am not really loveable

  17. The look in your eyes when you smile at me

  18. I love that you are a geek and I am so very not :)

  19. You reach for my hand in the car and in church

  20. I love the muscles on your arms

  21. I love it when you play soccer

  22. I love when you give me back rubs

  23. I love kissing you

  24. I love how you are slightly grumpy when you wake up in the mornings

  25. You have a great deal of patience

  26. I love that you look after me and Rona

  27. I love waking up next to you

  28. I love how smart you are

  29. I love that you love my family

  30. You are totally trustworthy

  31. I am proud of you

  32. I love to watch you with Rona

  33. I love how you would entertain my do-you-love-me questions everyday

  34. I love that you are chivalrous

  35. I love that we are best friends

  36. I love that we are lovers

  37. I love how safe I feel with you

  38. I love your sense of humour

  39. I love how polite you are

  40. I love how you are a deep thinker

Monday, November 22, 2010

30 days of giving - To the police

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I wrote a thank you note to the local police. They get a lot of abuse by drunken or just cranky people, so I wanted them to know that they are appreciated.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

30 days of giving - giving to those around me again

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I:

Wrote a card to a dear friend who is one of the most hospitable and loving people I know, and I wrote to tell her that.

I saved some magazines that I had bought and gave them to another friend, knowing she loves magazines.

I left positive feedback for a customer service person when I probably wouldn't have normally, but I thought this was a great way to give to the people who serve us

Friday, November 19, 2010

30 days of giving - Human milk bank

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I saw a great idea for giving - giving some of my spare breast milk to a human milk bank.

Unfortunately there isn't one on Sydney.... there are some in other states, but none here. I have become passionate about this cause. Because there is no milk bank here, I have started to write to the State and Federal Health ministers.
For more information about this:

Thursday, November 18, 2010

30 days of giving - Letters to the troops

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I wrote a letter to our Australian Troops who are serving.


I really didn't know what to write, but I wanted to let them know that I am grateful for their service.
So I wrote:

To our wonderful troops,

You have my heartfelt gratitude for all you do to protect our freedoms at home. I pray for all of you, and for your safety, you make us proud. Your hard work and courage has not gone unrecognised

Jeremiah 29:11-12 (New International Version)
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

30 days of giving - Random Acts of Kindess

30-Day Giving Challenge

Today I did 3 things to give....

PhotobucketBrought in the bins of my neighbour

PhotobucketBought extra punnets of strawberries to give to my family


And reminded my friend to donate blood.... okay, so it would be nicer if I could do it myself, but as I am still breastfeeding Rona, I am not allowed.... so this is the best I can do for the time being :)

Monday, November 15, 2010

30 days of giving - Overwhelmed

30-Day Giving Challenge

I sit here and think about all the people I should be giving to, after all, I have so much, and they have so little.

But where to start? In my immediate community, abroard, my church, my country..... the choices are endless.

I admit, I am completely overwhelmed....

Saturday, November 13, 2010

30 days of giving - Voice of the Martyrs

I almost got a job with the Sydney office of the Voice of the Martyrs... many, many years ago. I also have friends who have worked with this charity.

Voice of the Martyrs does such important work, heartbreaking, gutwrenching work. Work that I am not strong enough for. Just reading their newsletter breaks my heart (hence my on again, off again subscription to their newsletter)

There are many ways to give to the Voice of the Martyrs:

PRAY!!!! There is a prayer newsletter, so you know what specifically what to pray for

Give, you can give specifically to causes that mean a lot to you i.e. medical aid or bibles

Become an advocate - now this one is new to me, you write a letter to a persecuted Christian, and pray for him/her and those letters send a message to the governments and officials that what they do to Christians isn't unwitnessed and that Christians are aware of our persecuted bretheren.

I am trying to work out what to write as an advocate, what can you say? I will pray for the right words to write, and for Alimujiang Yimiti (this month's focus)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

30 days of giving - Samaritan's purse

Samaritan's Purse, a fantastic charity, you probably know it best for Operation Christmas Child

Yes, my church is a drop off place for the boxes. So I am very aware of this.

The videos make me want to cry, what a blessing to be able to bless children's lives in this way.

The collection date has passed, but remember to keep them in mind for next year.
My birthday is in September, so I use that as a reminder that Christmas is coming, and to start collecting things.

Also, remember to donate to pay for the postage of these boxes, otherwise they cannot get to where they need to go!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

30 Days of Giving - to extended family

Last Saturday Rona and I went to see a sick relative. He is Husband's Great-Uncle, we usually see him once or maybe twice a year, so we are not really close. But he is sick and my Mother in Law mentioned that they were going.

Seeing Husband was at work, I said that Rona and I would come along.

Now, I don't like driving long distances, especially not to where I have never been before. It was 80kms (50 miles) each way, in some heavy traffic. But I decided that it would mean a lot for them for us to come (as the uncle hadn't met Rona).

So we went. I don't regret it at all, even though it took all day. It was great to catch up, and Rona was the star of the show.

Giving to others really blesses me too

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

30 days of giving - Mercy House

30-Day Giving Challenge

Mercy House, the amazing project I have blogged about in the past

This is a wonderful project, and worthy of giving to.

There are several ways to do so....

Donate directly here

Shop at the Etsy shop here

You could buy this:

There are so many gorgeous things....

Prayer is the most important thing you can do for anyone

Sign up to their newsletter here

Yes, I am giving to this cause (in case you are wondering) and I think it is a cause you all should consider too :)

Monday, November 8, 2010

30 days of giving - neighbourly kindness

30-Day Giving Challenge

Yesterday my neighbour asked if she could have a copy of the local newspaper that was delivered to me. Her niece is in it and she wanted another copy to be able to post one to her father.

So of course I said yes.

And today, while I was out, I noticed our local library had a copy of that same paper that was available for the public to take. So I took it and left it on my neighbour's front verandah for her to find.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

30 days of Giving - at church

30-Day Giving Challenge

This past Saturday Rona and I went to volunteer in our church's annual Garage Sale (A yard sale to Americans)

We donated 50 books, as well as a few bits and pieces around the house (clothes weren't welcome). We also booked ourselves in to help (Husband was at work).

When we arrived at 10 to 8, people were already trying to buy things (we weren't meant to be open until 8). I was promptly put onto the "bags, linen etc" stall, next to the kids stall. Rona sat in her pram for most of the time (although I did have to hide the pram in the church when I took her out of it, I had about 10 queries about how much my pram would cost to buy).

The coordinator said to "not charge too much, we just want to get rid of things", as the main point of the day was to get people in the community into dialogue with the church.

A secondary mission was to raise money, but as everything was donated, and there were all volunteers working, so there were no overheads to deal with.

I ended up selling most items for $0.50 each, handbags, sheets etc, all $0.50, which I thought was a great deal. We were very popular for that reason :)

My mum was in the kid's stall, helping, so we overlapped that section. We sold about 4 prams (NOT mine!), and it was really great, as one lady we sold a pram to, hers was ripped and falling apart, and she got a good quality pram for $3 (we tried to sell it to her for $0.20, but she insisted.... it was about 1hr from closing time and we were just trying to sell as much as possible as fast a possible).

So, it was a long 6 hours for Rona and I, but it was great to give back to my church and my community!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

30 Days of Giving - to children

Read this blog - http://www.incourage.me/2010/11/a-christmas-card-drive-of-epic-proportions.html

I have, and donated a card to a child.

This is such a great idea, I wish I had had it :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

30 days of Giving - in the scriptures

Why give? The answer -

"In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'" Acts 20:35~

John answered, "The man with two tunics should share with him who has none, and the one who has food should do the same." Luke 3:11

" But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in Him?" I John 3:17

Today, I am going through my books, clothes and house items to give some away. I will be giving the books and house items to our church for a garage sale, and the clothes to an op shop.

I am overwhelmed that I have too much, we are showered with riches, and I am nowhere grateful enough. I am praying that this month I can open my eyes to how I can give, in this month and in the future.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

30 days of giving - giving to those around me

30-Day Giving Challenge

I am starting off small....

I gave a 2 for 1 voucher for the movies to my newly-wed brother that I had received in a competition. I know that they like movies but have a tight budget.

I gave an artwork that I had done of Sarah (my best friend) in high school, to Sarah. I just popped it in her letterbox, hopefully that will brighten her day :)

I sent a bouquet of roses to my mum. She mentioned at my brother-in-law's wedding that the bride's bouquet was what she wanted for her wedding and didn't get. So I sent a bouquet to her "just because"

I thought this was a nice way to start my 30 days

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

30 days of giving

I am going to join the 30 Days Giving Challenge

This is the blurb about what it is all about

"If you have a heart for giving, we invite you to join us from November 1 – 30, 2010 as we take giving to new heights, combining the efforts of thousands of people. We’ll be working together to bless our friends, family, neighbors, and complete strangers by making a conscious effort to give each day of November. And we’ll do it all for God’s glory!"

I am going to be working on giving this month, time as well as money. I will be focusing on time and effort I can give (as being a SAHM we don't have much spare money).

Keep posted for what I am doing to give this month

Monday, November 1, 2010

Links for November

Some deep thinking for November

Emerging Pastor
A great blog for the thinking Christian, an honest journey of a student pastor

Christianity Today
Some great articles, some light and some that give you pause

Matthias Media
The best Christian publishing group (in my humble opinion), fantastic resources and irreproachable teaching

And this one just for fun