Monday, June 30, 2008

Saviour's Story

I've been wanting to share Saviour's story with you for a while now, but I've been struggling to find the right words and the appropriate amount to share so you can share my burdened heart without violating privacy etc

Anyways, we had a big event at our church for the kids from downtown on friday night (which was amazing by the way!) and Saviour and his brother Sincere got into a fist fight which resulted in me getting punched in the face (accidentally I'm choosing to believe) - so I decided it was time to jump right in and tell you their story in hopes (belief really) that your prayers will make a difference.

Saviour (his real name) goes by "Sabo" so I'll use that instead because I always find it a little weird to call someone other than Jesus "Saviour" . . . Anyways, Sabo is ten years old, although by looking at him and interacting with him you would probably guess him to be at least fifteen. Of course, he's been through more in his ten short years than many people experience in a lifetime, so the maturity (well not so much maturity as a certain hardness) is understandable. Sabo has an older brother and an older sister, although the older brother doesnt live with them. He also has a younger brother (Sincere who is eight) and a younger sister (Samaya, she's six). They live in one of the Atlanta housing projects in the heart of downtown Atlanta (which means they live in a tiny, unairconditioned apartment - which should be outlawed in GA summer by the way) Just under a year ago, Sabo's mom died. And since, like most of his friends, Sabo doesnt know his dad, it fell to his grandmother to take responsibility for Sabo and his siblings.

Unfortunately, Sabo's grandmother is bedridden. She does her best to look after them - but five kids (plus cousins are often staying there as well) are a lot to look after from a cot in a scorching hot apartment. When I signed the kids up for summer camp this year, I discovered she doesn't know their birthdays, whether or not they have health insurance or how old they are. Y'all, my heart broke with that realization. I mean, I dont know how they get fed or bathed or clothed or hugged.

I do know that their older sister (I think she's fifteen) helps take care of them - but I also know that the other kids inform me that "she doesn't mess around" when they get in trouble, which means that she probably "whoops" them plenty.

One of the moms who lives in their housing project was telling me that Sabo and Sincere have been in serious trouble ever since their mom died, they get kicked out of school, their teachers cant handle them and no one knows what to do with them. And truthfully, Saviour and Sincere are two of the hardest, most trouble-making kids at Metro Kidz, but it's impossible for me to feel anything but love and empathy for them, no matter how many times they get in fist fights, and even when I end up in the middle getting punched in the face.

Because how do you expect kids who are less than ten years old to understand the teachings of Jesus when they've never experienced anything close to the love and grace of Jesus? In fact, when Sabo found out that Sincere punched me in the face, he asked me if I wanted him to "beat the crap out of Sincere" for me. I told him I forgave Sincere and that the Bible tells us to be kind to those who hurt us -- Sabo responded by giving me a disgusted look and asking "who taught you that?!"

I share this story to ask you to come alongside Adam and I in praying for this family, praying that Jesus' love might shine through us and shed some light in their dark situation. We dont know how to keep these kids from ending up in prison, but we know that Jesus is bigger than their circumstances and that He can do anything!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Babies "R" Us = registry "fun"

When Adam and I finally decided to sit down and register for baby Stanley's stuff, we were immediately overwhelmed by:
1-Our lack of parental wisdom - I mean, I didn't (ok dont) even know what half the stuff was - how do i decide which bottle to use, let alone which stroller works best
2-The sheer number of baby related "necessities" which included everything from a video monitor (because watching your baby sleep every night is WAY more fun than watching The Office right?)

Somehow, after much fighting and maybe even a few tears, we were able to register for everything we thought we could possibly need for our new little baby. Apparently, Babies "R" Us disagreed.

Naively, I assumed my registry was good-to-go and would wait patiently until we had a baby shower or some other such festivity. However, we got our crib yesterday (finally - and that's another story for another day) and the mattress size specifications were VERY specific - so I logged onto our registry to make sure the mattress we painstakingly selected would actually FIT the crib.

I was very confused when I logged onto my registry and thought maybe I was on the wrong one -- all of a sudden, I had HUNDREDS (ok dozens at least) of items on there that I couldnt possibly have registered for (I have certain aversions to things which are too "baby" and the pink 'love bug' bedding would definitely qualify). Not to mention that I know wanted two strollers, two high chairs, three sets of crib bedding and five hundred boxes of diapers -- how greedy do you think I am?!

I mentioned this bizarre fact to my mother-in-law (actually she apparently checks our registry far more often than we do and asked why in the world I had registered for two strollers) When I explained the bizarre registry situation, she mentioned that her neighbor who just had a baby had the same thing happen and it turns out that Babies "R" Us went ahead and added a "few" things they thought she needed but forgot to register for! I mean really, how irritating is that?! What will people think of me when they look at my registry and discover I have registered for approximately 300 baby items!? 300 ITEMS!

So this morning I decided to set out deleting all those things which Babies "R" Us registered us for. But to my dismay, I quickly learned that deleted about 200 items will probably take 2.5 weeks . . . you have to delete each unwanted item one by one and then wait for the page to reload, scroll down (through 300 items remember?) find where you were, delete one MORE item, reload the page . . . So I got irritated and came here to write about my problem rather than actually solving it. In fact, I think Babies "R" Us has a brilliant scheme because who (besides me) has 2.5 weeks available to spend in front of the computer deleting registry items?? Most people probably leave them and then wonder why in the world they registered for a pink flannel sleep sack covered in baby blue butterflies?

Anyways, I just realized that most people probably dont want to read a novel about baby registries (no matter how thrilling it may be) so I apologize for the fact that this is the longest post about nothing in the history of this blog . . . congratulations to anyone who is still reading.

Updated to add: They actually registered me for not one, but TWO, "Baby on Board" signs for my car -- how embarrassing - people might think I actually wanted those!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

I'm all about the letters

My dad told me I had a slight obsession with letters used in my home decor. Looking around today I realized he might be right. Not that I'm admitting I have a problem or anything.
See exhibit A (our kitchen/breakfast nook), exhibit B (the entry way - no it doesnt SAY anything - it's just random letters) and exhibit C (our fireplace mantel) There's actually a few more letters for decor throughout the house, but I got a little embarrassed and stopped taking pictures of them. I mean really, you'd think I could be a little more creative!

So now that our little one is ALMOST here (seriously - can you believe I'm nearly in my third trimester?!) We are starting to work on her room. So guess how I decided to decorate? Random letters! surprise, surprise . . .

So Sarah (my sister) and I started painting random letters all over the room the other night -- only to discover at the end of all our hard work that we had accidentally written "DAM" on her wall - oops! I know it's the beaver kind of dam and not the curse word, but still . . . I changed the M to an H and now we're good to go. I'm excited with how it looks so far and am even more excited to finish the room up now that Adam's FINALLY coming home!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Probaby the worst day ever . . .

Think 175 degree weather (plus 100% humidity) while 6 and a half months pregnant - my husband is out of town - my grandfather passed away (meaning my parents are also out of town) - and my dog is in the hospital with some unknown illness which has gone undiagnosed for 6 months, been in remission for a month and returned full-force in time to create, quite literally, the "perfect storm" of bad days.

I mean, I'm just saying - sometimes I don't understand God's timing at all . . .


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