Friday, November 21, 2014

It All Started With a Cow

Two years ago, our family decided to try to earn enough money during Advent to purchase a cow through the Compassion Gift Catalog. I found a great Advent calendar that was a little different than most. Instead of the kids receiving something each day, they were putting aside money each day based on things we are blessed with in our home. And yes, we did end up with enough money to purchase the cow! To help us remember our gift, I found a cow ornament, wrapped it, and put it under our tree for Christmas morning. 

Then, two months later, we learned about a video contest Compassion was hosting for families that had donated toward the Compassion Gift Catalog! This was pretty exciting because we ended up being in the top three vote getters for the contest. There was a chance for two of us to win a trip to Nicaragua with Compassion! We didn't end up winning the contest, but this was the start of my heart's desire to go on a Compassion trip
I know not everyone can and/or will go on a trip with Compassion. But there is a way that each family can make a difference. Even if you do not sponsor a Compassion child, you can give a gift this Christmas that will have a lasting effect for a family living in extreme poverty.
Compassion has a wonderful gift catalog so that you and your family can give a gift in Jesus' name this Christmas. You can even set up a wish list and share it with family and friends. Won't you consider spending less on your own family this Christmas, so that you can share the hope of Jesus with another family?
Originally posted at Our Little Corner of the World on November 27, 2013

About Yvonne Reynolds...Yvonne is very active when it comes to sponsorship and advocacy for Compassion. She maintains Compassion's Second Friday Letter Writing Pinterest board. Yvonne is a homeschooling mom who likes to read, bake and take photographs. You can find her blogging at Our Little Corner of the World.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Compassion ABC's: A is for...

A is for....ADVOCACY


noun...a person who publicly supports or recommends a particular cause or policy.
verb...publicly recommend or support.

Whether or not you are an official member of Compassion's Advocate Network, YOU can speak up and spread the word of Compassion's ministry to those around you. 

Take a minute to watch this video... 

Speak Up for One Child from Compassion International on Vimeo.

Advocacy can take on many forms and look different for each person.

It can look like wearing a t-shirt. It can look like working at a concert. It can look like talking about your sponsored child with your neighbor or friend, It can look like doing a Compassion Sunday presentation. It can look like sharing the gift catalog with your small group. It can look like writing a Compassion themed blog. It can look like running in a race.

Advocacy has many faces and one spread the message of sponsorship and to help release children from poverty in Jesus name.

Want to learn more? Go HERE and HERE for more information and ideas. I also wrote more about the advocate network HERE.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Help Me Fill the Backpack

I'm just a teeny, weeny bit excited because I am officially going to Nicaragua at the end of January to meet Josseling! I'm going with my mom and she'll meet her Kerlint who attends the same Compassion project as my Josseling.

Over the weekend I found this backpack on clearance and thought it was perfect to take to Josseling. Now I need to fill it and I need your help.

What gifts would you give to a 17 year old girl?

Friday, November 14, 2014

A Kid at Heart

I have a bit of a confession to make....

I LOVE to read children's books. When my girls were really young, my favorite thing to do with them was sit down and read. Every single week we would go to the library and bring home bags of books to read. We still do. And we have quite a few books of our own as well.

Even though my girls are fluent in reading, we still enjoy reading stories together. In fact, we almost always have a book we are reading aloud together. I love revisiting favorite stories from my childhood and also reading books that are new.

Honestly, I can't believe how much I learn from children's books. In our homeschool experience, we have been reading through Story of the World and I have learned so much about world history. And don't even get me started on the Jesus Storybook Bible... What a great way to learn the overall, simple story of the from the very beginning we so desperately needed a Saviour and God promises over and over to send one.

Even when I'm challenging myself to read a classic such as Oliver Twist or Moby Dick, I tend to pick up a children's version so I can understand the overall storyline before trying to wade through all the details.

Another resource for children that I love to read is Compassion's Explorer magazine.

This is a fantastic resource for young and old alike. It is full of beautiful photos, information about the countries where Compassion works and glimpses of life for so many kids around the world. Although poverty is a stark reality for so many, Compassion does an excellent job portraying the beautiful in the midst of reality.

To get your own free subscription of this great resource, simply sign up HERE.

I'd love to are you still a kid at heart? Do you have any confessions to make?

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

What to Write ~ Fruit of the Spirit ~ Peace

It's time to share another sample letter with you. Please feel free to use this letter in any way you see fit. You can copy it word for word, edit it to fit your child or use it as a launching pad for your own idea.

You may remember that a couple months ago I started a series of letters to my kids about the Fruits of the Spirit. In the first post, I introduced the Fruit of the Spirit and asked my kids to memorize Galations 5:22. Since then I've written about LOVE and JOY. Today I'll share with you my letter about PEACE.

I hope this letter finds you well. We think about you a lot and pray for you and your family regularly. We are so thankful for the opportunity to be your sponsors and get to know you a bit through our letters.

In my past few letters, I’ve been talking about the Fruits of the Spirit as mentioned in Galatians 5:22. Do you remember them? I’ve written them at the top of this letter and this time I’ll talk more a bit about PEACE.  When I look up the definition of peace I learn that it means “freedom from disturbance or quiet and tranquil”. The Bible talks quite a bit about peace also.

In Psalm 4:8, the psalmist wrote, “In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone Lord, make me dwell in safety.” The psalmist was confident that God would protect him and therefore was able to rest and not worry.

I also love in Colossians where Paul admonishes us to “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.” True peace comes from Christ – from God.
Jesus himself said, Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.  (John 14:27) 

And just a couple chapters later He says, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) He is reassuring his followers that He has given them (and us) peace.

Not only does God give us peace, He also commands us to live at peace with others – to pursue peace in our relationships. In Romans 12:18 it says, “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

There are many, many more verses about peace in the Bible – too many to list them all here. By reading God’s word it’s pretty clear that peace is an important part of our faith. And as Christians, we are to produce peace – one of the fruits of the Spirit – in our lives.

I’ll leave you with this final prayer from Romans 15:13…

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him,
so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

I’d love to know what peace means to you and your family. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Just a Minute Winner ....


You have won a copy of the book Just a Minute by Wess Stafford. Please email me at fiddlejill (at) gmail (dot) com and let me know where I can send this.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Staple Foods in Your Child's Country

I don't remember where I ran across this list, but I printed it out and have had it sitting in my folder for a couple years now. I decided I should type it up and share it with you in case you are curious about the staple foods your child might eat.

In alphabetical order of the countries in which Compassion ministers...

rice, chicken, beef, eggs, lentils, garlic ginger, onions

potatoes, carrots, corn, rice, beans, chicken, fish, bananas, plantains, lettuce

rice, black beans, pasta, chicken, potato, kale, banana, citrus fruits, onions, garlic

Burkina Faso
millet, rice, corn, peanuts, potatoes, beans, sweet potatoes, okra, fresh green vegetables, eggs, fish, mangoes

rice, red beans, chicken, corn, potatoes, avocado, bananas

Dominican Republic
rice, black beans, bananas, carrots, tomatoes, avocado, chicken, citrus fruits, sugarcane

rice, potatoes, chicken, cheese soup, potato soup, avocado, corn tortillas, fish

El Salvador
corn, black beans, corn tortillas, tomatoes, chicken, white cheese, bananas

injera (spongy bread made from teff flour), lentils, onions, garlic, beef or goat, chickpeas, chilies

black beans, corn, tortillas, rice, eggs, white cheese, chicken, tamales, corn chips, taquitos, tomatoes, avocados, onions, bananas, oranges

cassava, rice, sweet potatoes, plantains and bananas, okra, spinach or other stewed greens, tomatoes, onions, fish, chicken, peanuts, corn, millet

rice, black and red beans, corn, sweet potatoes, bananas, avocados, pumpkin or other squash, mango, coconut, sugarcane, chicken, goat

rice, black or red beans, tamales, corn, corn tortillas, cabbage, basic soup of chicken stock

rice, potatoes, onions, garlic, bananas, chicken, fish, vegetables, lentils, garbanzo beans (chickpeas), spices

rice, vegetables, fish, bananas, coconut, mangoes

corn meal porridge, flat bread, rice, corn, onions, tomatoes, collard greens, beef, goat, potatoes, chicken, passion fruit, milk

corn, corn tortillas, tomatoes, squash, sweet potatoes, pinto or black beans, onion, chilies, chicken, pork, avocado, mango, papaya

corn, black or red beans, corn tortillas, chicken, eggs, cabbage, tomatoes, bananas, avocado

potatoes, pumpkin, rice, beef, pork, corn

rice, sweet potatoes, vegetables, bananas, coconut, bread, fish, chicken, watermelon

bananas, red beans, sweet potatoes, potatoes, corn, eggs, chicken, beef, bananas, oranges, mango

cornmeal porridge, chicken, goat, corn, peanuts, fish, stewed greens

corn porridge, okra, spinach, sweet potatoes, peanuts, goat, fish, eggplant, cabbage, carrots, green beans, tomatoes, banana, watermelon

rice, beef, chicken, eggs, vegetables, fruit, fish

corn, rice, sweet potatoes, beans, banana, peanuts, chicken

the "pantry" in a Peruvian home

making tortillas in Nicaragua

fresh market in Thailand

fried plantains made by Marlennis Diaz of Dominican Republic

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