Friday, January 17, 2014

Operation Smile

I usually don't share a lot of advertorials on our family blog, but I'm all for sharing good causes :).  Recently my mom went on a trip to Guatemala to assist as a nurse in 73 surgeries in three days for those in need.  She said it was such an amazing opportunity and experience that she is going back again this summer, and taking my little sister with her!  Thinking about my mom's willingness to help those in need by providing healthcare out of charity made me think of another charity that does a similar thing:

Surely you've heard of Operation Smile before.  This is a medical charity that consists of medical professionals and other people who want to help by providing reconstructive surgery and care for children born with facial deformities.  

A lot of these surgeries consist of repairing cleft lip and cleft palate, which are actually very common.  In fact, a child is born with a cleft every three minutes and 1 in 10 of these children will die before they turn a year old.

I can't imagine having a child with just such a deformity and having to watch them grow up unable to eat, speak, or smile.  Imagine the miracle to behold when Operation Smile is able to provide over 200,000 free surgeries for these children with facial deformities!

Operation Smile currently works in over 60 counties, while training local doctors and strengthening healthcare in developing countries.

You can learn more about their mission HERE.  If you're currently a student, you can help these children while you are helping yourself, saving on textbook costs. donates to Operation Smile with every textbook rented.  What a win-win!

Also look into CampusBookRental's new program, called RentBack, where you become the bookstore.  Instead of selling your books back to the bookstore for enough cash to buy a pizza, you instead rent your books to other students and get part of the proceeds every time your book is rented.  Sounds like a sweet deal.  Look into it, little brothers.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Brother Bean

 23 years later...

Friday, January 10, 2014

You are Here Pillows

 Another Christmas project I really enjoyed making were these two pillows for Marc & Diana, meant not to drive home the fact that they are apart, but to perhaps years later remind them of that crazy arrangement and how happy they are to be together!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Christmas was Cool

 Merry Christmas!
 Our baby Jesus was a little squirmy, but very well-behaved.
 Link and this stuffed horse were completely inseparable.
 How fun to have everyone home!!  
(Except for Derek on his mission, and Braden's fiance who came a few days later)

Christmas jammies!  Between both grandma's, my boys are set on pajamas for a while!
 Us, being excited about our new saw.  Jason spent some free time in my Dad's shop and built the boys a little step stool for the kitchen.  It turned out so cute!  As soon as its painted, I'll post pictures of it.  Speaking of paint...

 I tried my hand at some 'real' painting and gave my parents a canvas of their home.

 Then we just played and played and played!  Actually, Mom worked us like slaves, painting up quilt pieces for the upcoming wedding.  I was able to bust out a Mother of the Groom dress and get a head start on bridesmaid skirts.
The girls got pedicures and the boys played a lot of Ultimate.  We played another thrilling round of The Newlywed Game, and though we couldn't beat out the soon-to-be married lovers, I feel satisfied in tying with my parents, married 29 years.
Parley stole the show in all his cuteness, and Lincoln learned how to play the trumpet.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Marshmallow Study Revisited

Surely you've heard of the marshmallow study, where toddlers were given a marshmallow with the option of getting two marshmallows if they waited several minutes to eat the first.  Those kids that could delay gratification and exhibit self-control were determined to be much more successful later on in life, yada yada.

So Lincoln came up to me last night asking if he could eat 5 carrots so that he could have 5 marshmallows.  He knows how treats work in this house :)  Anyways, I put the carrots and the marshmallows in front of him, then left the room to see what he'd eat first.  My mama heart glowed to see him finish his veggies before diving in to the sweets.  What self control :)

This kid is a stickler with rules.  He's gonna be such a good oldest brother.