Week 2

Hey you all, Happy Fall! Here we are with another week of the 30 days of kindness. Have fun finding creative ways to add these encouraging and fun activities into your next couple days. I would encourage you to pray and ask Jesus who He wants you to bless this week. And don’t forget, this is the season for pumpkin, hot drinks and camp fires!

Week 2

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Take someone coffee.

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Send a card via snail mail.

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Read Psalms 136.

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Bless an authority with words or actions.

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Make a list of 10 things you are thankful for.

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Try a new fall recipe.

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Share a bible verse as an encouragement for someone.

Verse of the week:

Psalm 136:1. O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Written by Damarus and Daisy

30 Days of Kindness

Hello! For the month of October we are going to be doing a 30 Days of Kindness challenge. We would love if you would join us! Each week we will be posting a list of seven things that are either fall themed activities to do or ways to bless others.

Along with that, each week there will be a verse at the bottom of the post that we highly recommend for memorization.

Also, be creative in how you bless others. If you need to modify one of the activities to work for you that is fine. It’s the spirit of the law, not the letter!

If, at the end of the month you have completed the entire list for each week please comment or email us and you will be entered into a fun fall giveaway!!

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Ask someone how you can pray for them.

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Call your grandma or another elderly lady.

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Pay for the person behind you at a fast food drive through.

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Make pumpkin muffins.

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Read a story to a child.

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Take a walk and note the fall leaves

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Affirm someone in something they did well.

Post by Kinza

Hosting- an Opening of Our Eyes

Hosting has been an experience that I would never trade. To give a little background, quite a few years ago mom was looking at the pictures of Eastern European orphans on New Horizons for Children. The children were so cute and our hearts broke when we read the paragraphs describing each child. Many of them had such simple desires. That was when we decided that we should host two girls for the summer term which is six weeks. Although the experience was hard, we loved it and hosted D and V several more times in the following years. Then came Covid along with some other complications and we now have not seen those dear girls for quite a while. Which brings us to this summer when mom got a phone call from one of the hosting directors who said that a family who was hosting was having major problems with their host daughter and they wondered if we would take her. After discussing it, we decided that there was no way we couldn’t give her a home for a few weeks. So A moved in with us.

As soon as we met, she latched right on to me and was never far from my side. At first I wondered how A could possibly have caused trouble. She seemed so sweet and helpful. It did not end up taking long to get past the honeymoon stage though! She had insecurity and control issues which made me sad because it pointed to previous rejection, neglect, and abuse. Constantly she tried to control me and everything I did and if I didn’t treat her the way she thought I should, or if I spent too much time with someone else, she would try to “punish me” by being rude or just ignoring me. It took me a little bit of time to figure out how to react to her and how to treat her when she got angry, but I did learn that what she needed most was God’s unconditional love and a secure environment. Mom did very well with working with her and also helping us girls know how to deal with everything.

With everything I said above, though, I will add that we did enjoy having A in our family and had some really fun times with her. I, of course, took every opportunity that I could to comb her hair!! We had sleepovers in the tent in our back yard, played lots of volleyball, went shopping, swimming, and just hung out and had lots of long conversations over Google Translate, since we couldn’t really speak the same language! She did learn lots of English while she was here. It was amazing how fast she picked it up! After A left, we found many little notes that she had left hidden around the house. Being very sweet, the notes almost brought us to tears!

A had a lot of attachment issues, most likely because of rejection and abuse in her childhood. Sometimes I wanted to get angry with her when she would act unreasonable, but I had to remember to give her grace because she has experienced things that I have been protected from. Whenever she would ignore Kinza to try to “punish her”, I would often be the one she would pour a lot of attention on. This was just a way she was trying to control both Kinza and me. I don’t think she was intentionally doing this, but so many small things she did played into the big picture of her wanting to control the way every situation turned out. Each day there were different things we had to work through. Whenever I think of the day we surprised A by taking her to the store where Kinza works, or when she and I went to get pictures developed at Walgreens, or when she showed us how to eat crayfish, I knew there was a reason for her being with us. The small things that made her happy made us happy, to realize that through God’s love she was changing.

Excerpt by Ginger

A little bit about New Horizon’s for Children, here. It is a Christian organization that brings children from foster homes and orphanages in Eastern Europe to families in America for either six weeks in the summer or four weeks over Christmas vacation. Their purpose is to provide safe, fun, Christian homes for children to experience, so they can receive Jesus’ love and have hope for the future. If anyone is interested you can sponsor children so they have a higher chance of being hosted.

Without Him I could do nothing without Him I’d surely fail, without Him I would be drifting like a ship without a sail. Jesus, oh Jesus, do you know him today do not turn him away. Oh Jesus, Oh Jesus, without him how lost I would be.

Hymn written by Mylon lefevre

That hymn pretty much describes how I feel right now. Only through God’s grace was I raised in a Christian home and saved through Jesus’ blood. The whole hosting experience really opened my eyes to some of the ways I feel and act and how that relates to things that have happened earlier in my life. Similarly I have also learned how to spot actions and feelings in other people that are caused by previous happenings in their life and how to help those people. I am learning how to have grace for others who may seem extremely insensitive, insecure, and obnoxious. We do not know everyone else’s story so let’s try to have mercy on others who have been less fortunate then some of us.

Words by Kinza

Adventures Across the Ocean

In August I had the amazing opportunity to visit friends in Jordan! My dream has always been to go to the Middle East and I was so, so happy when God opened the door for me to spend 3 weeks in Jordan. Our friends that live over there have 3 children and the fourth was born during my time there! That was very exciting for the family. Among other things, I enjoyed helping around the house. We also did some shopping and touring which was a big highlight of the trip! Oh, and the food… let’s just say that I love Middle Eastern food!! It is great to be home with my family although I enjoyed my trip immensely and wanted to stay longer!

Here are a few pictures of some of the amazing food we ate! I think my favorite is Mutabal, which is a dip for bread made from eggplant. Being amazing cooks, our neighbors supplied us with so many delicious meals. They were way too generous! If you ever go to Jordan you definitely need to try the popular Kanafeh. It is a pretty good dessert although very interesting!

Today we went to the suk (a shopping place). It was very cool- so many shops and people! It wasn’t at all touristy either, so that’s nice. We got lots of stares, questions, etc. I bought a bunch or souvenirs for my family. One of the coolest shop was the perfume shop where I got perfume for my sisters. You just tell them what kind of scent you want, pick out the bottle you want and then they mix it to make the perfume right there in front of you! We ran into one of ******’s good friends. A 17 year old Muslim guy and he bought slushies for all of us. The fruit and vegetable part of it was cool, very crowded, and loud! I tasted cactus fruit and raw dates. The cactus stuff was pretty good but the dates not really! After that we went to a souvenir shop in the mall. While we were in the mall I got to watch a lady doing henna! We also went to a sweet shop and bought all kinds of good dessert! We then went home and ate a good supper of the neighbor’s delicious food. Great day!

an entry in my traveling journal

While I was there I got to do some touring. That was so exciting! I was at places mentioned in the Bible such as Mt. Nebo, which is the mountain on which Moses died. I also saw the Dead Sea and the Sea of Galilee. It brings the Bible stories to life when you see exactly where they happened! I saw many old roman ruins like amphitheaters, old towns and other impressive structures.

Here are some pictures of daily life which mostly included preparing meals and doing dishes, cleaning, doing laundry, crafting with the children and taking them to the park, holding the baby, trips to get groceries and everyone’s highlight in the evening; going to the roof of our apartment building! The family I stayed with and helped for the 3 weeks I was there is so amazing and I love them a lot! They are most of what made me love my trip as much as I did because they welcomed me in as family, took me so many places, and taught me so much about the culture, history, and language of Jordan. Hopefully I will be able to see them again soon!

Jordan is a Muslim country and the whole experience was kind of a culture shock. It makes me sad to see how much Muslim’s put into the religion, with all their feasts, prayer times and strict rules and yet I know that at the end of their lives they will receive no reward for what they are doing now. Without God all we do is nothing. I didn’t know any Arabic either, so that presented its own set of challenges. Although I am happy because I did come home with a very slight knowledge of Arabic!

Post by Kinza

Tips and Tricks (in the Flower World)

Hi! Today we are bringing you all something a little out of the ordinary! We decided to make a video on flower arranging for everyone to enjoy. Kylie; Ginger’s and my little sister, is the one who will be explaining all the dos and don’ts. She is the flower expert of the family and keeps our table well supplied with flowers! -Kinza

Hey! Thank you so much for watching this video! I hope that you feel inspired to make something beautiful with flowers. Here are a few tips that I didn’t add:

1. Zinnias don’t like cold so it is best not to keep a bouquet with zinnias in a cooler.
2. If you use hydrangeas in a bouquet, dip the ends in alum powder or put a little in the vase. Hydrangeas wilt very fast but alum is a very good preservative.
3. Keep practicing! A great bouquet doesn’t make itself.

Floret Flower Farms and Love n Fresh Flowers are two blogs on raising and arranging flowers that I have found very helpful.
Have fun and don’t forget to thank the One who made flowers and bouquets possible! -Kylie