For #ouradventcheer today, we were able to bless a ministry called Rescue Upstream http://www.rescueupstream.org with a gift card to be used to help further its efforts. Rescue Upstreams purpose is to educate, inform, and partner with other organizations to help in any way possible to put an end to sex trafficking.
Sometimes we feel like we are trying to drain the ocean with an eyedropper in regard to keeping the trafficking at bay, and fighting the good fight against the ever growing problem. But we cannot grow weary in well doing, because we will reap a harvest of righteousness some day.
My good friend Tanya and her ministry partners work so tirelessly, and it is such a difficult job, and she rarely hears a thank you. But she is doing exactly what God wants her to do, and that makes her one of the most joyful ladies I know. And it is not a fake joy either. It is real, sincere, and bubbles over into all she does. Tanya is an all-in, no holds barred type of girl. I know God is using her and her band of helpers for great good in Palm Beach County and the world. And best of all? (besides knowing I will get to spend all eternity with her) She is MY FRIEND. One of my nearest and dearest. And I am so blessed to have her in my life.
If you want to know more about rescue upstream, or how you can get involved, visit their website: www.rescueupstream.org.
Also, she is certified to teach a great seminar called "Stewards of Children" which is about recoginzing and preventing sexual abuse. I highly recommend this seminar for any parent, grandparent, childcare worker, or anyone who has children in their lives or cares about children. In general, I think everyone should take this course. It is short, well done, and extremely informative. I went to the seminar as a support for her, not thinking I really needed to go. But WOW!! It was amazing. I came away from it equipped, informed and much more aware of how I can recognize the signs and help. You need to take this course.
So sorry I haven't gotten to post daily with our Advent(Cheer). We went to Kennedy Space Center to see the launch of Orion, then it was scrubbed, so we came home, and drove back up, and I am still sleep deprived! I feel like I might never catch up!
For day 2, we ate at our regular Taco Tuesday at Tijuana Flats in Wellington. They feed us every week, so we decided to take them some goodies which included homemade fudge and cookies and hot cocoa mix) and a card thanking them for serving us. They were so grateful and I think they enjoyed it very much.
Day 3 we spent at Kennedy Space Center. Originally I had planned to just purchase someone's admission ticket, but Don had a better idea. We went to Cracker Barrel for dinner, and purchased three gift cards of $10.00 each. Then we randomly (very randomly) chose three people (two couples and a single gal) to give them to.
The first couple were just finishing up when we approached them and told them our family had chosen them to bless. They were very gracious, and as we chatted, we found out that he works for Kennedy Space Center and had to be back to work at 1:00 AM, and we told him we would see him there!
I know you must wonder what happened to our Advent Cheer #ouradventcheer.
Well, we have been doing it, but I have realized that keeping up with this blog while celebrating a birthday, and doing two trips to Kennedy Space Center in as many days has set me back! So I am going to update on Monday, December 8 with all our fun. It has given us great joy to be a blessing! I think we have been blessed more than the receipents of the gifts! Duh. For it is more blessed to give than to receive. True statement.
So, look for more tomorrow!
Welcome to Day 2 of our Advent(cheer)! As I said before, God gave me this idea to do an act of kindness every day for the month of December leading up to Christmas. We will probably continue through the 12 Days of Christmas, which ends January 5, which is Epiphany. Want to know more about the 12 Days of Christmas? Check here http://www.12daysbook.com/ for the great book my dear friend (the one moving to NC :( next summer) and I wrote.
Today we took homemade cookies and fudge to our friends at Tijuana Flats, where we eat lunch almost every Tuesday. (Tuesday is "Taco Tuesday" where you get two tacos, chips and a drink for $5.49. They're yummy and filling and it doesn't break the bank!)
The cookies we made are the delicious recipe I found on http://thepioneerwoman.com/ She featured them several years ago on her Christmas blog. But they actually came from http://bakeat350.blogspot.com/ They are delicious, easy to make, and the cookies she makes are absolutely the most fun I have ever seen. Her royal icing is perfection, and she shows how to make "flood" icing that works exactly like she says it will. It is a great website for the cookie baker in anyone.
The fudge we made is the kind made from marshmallow fluff, just the recipe off the back of the fluff container. I have made pounds and pounds of fudge in my lifetime and that recipe has never failed. I suppose that it why it is called, "Never Fail Fudge." We added walnuts to some, but left some plain. It makes 5 pounds(!) so there is plenty to share! (The picture is only about half of what we made. I had already shared some yesterday at Vinceramos, and my kids have been munching on it all day!)
God gave me a spectacular idea for this season. It was inspired by the video "Make a Bad Day Good". If you haven't seen it, you can go to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqvTJSPwqt4 It is fantastic! And it made me think: "We should do this sometime." And God spoke to my heart and made me think, " why don't we do this for Advent? A small act of kindness every day leading up to Christmas. It will help us focus on giving, instead of getting, and help us to serve instead of expecting to be served.
So we had a family meeting and came up with dozens of ideas we are going to impliment. Anything from donating to the local animal shelters, to baking cookies or goodies and giving them to our neighbors when we go Christmas caroling.
We would LOVE to have you join us on our Advent Cheer journey. Our Adventcheer. (God just gave me that as I was writing this!) Even if you cannot do it everyday like we are, you can do something to spread some Christmas Cheer. If you decide to join in or want to follow us, check back here, or at #adventcheer on twitter. By the way, you can follow me @damazingmama on twitter, too. Maybe you can only do something once a week. That's ok. Just try to do something. Anything to lift another person's load. Becasuse we all get weary on this road we are traveling. But it makes me feel so glad to make someone else's day just a little bit brighter. Thats how it works. We all get weary. We all need to be cheered, and to do the cheering. So lets start a movement. Spread some Christmas Cheer! As as we are spreading the joy around, we are being the hands and feet of Jesus. Because He is the one we are here for. And don't we want to have opportunities to love people like He loves? And this is the perfect way to do it. Maybe He will even open the door to lead someone to Himself. That would be phenominal. Either way, we are "Jesus with skin on" to someone. This is going to be good. And I can't wait!! Please leave a comment if you decide to join us. We would love to follow your journey, too.
Today, we went to Vinceramos. It is an Equine Therapy center for handicapped children. I will post the video tomorrow. Suffice it to say, it was a great experience. Tomorrow, we are going to Tijuana Flats Restaurant for lunch, and we will be taking them goodies from our kitchen to share in theirs. We eat there most every Tuesday, and we appreciate them for serving us every week. They love to get goodies from us, since we have taken them to them several times in the past. And they always appreciate being remembered. Just like everyone else does.
So some days you may get 2 or more posts. I will let you know as they happen!