We hereby pledge:
- To spend intimate, quantity time with our family.
- To actively help the poor, the sick, the lonely, and the helpless.
- To value, protect, and advocate for children.
- To de-emphasize the importance of “stuff” in our lives.
- To bring publicity to good causes and good people.
- To live with intentionality, as if this year was our very last.
- To observe the needs in our country/community – and then do something about them.
- To give – every day.
Oh, I do hope you'll come to visit us! Our church has a new-ish pastor (about a year) and he's really talking about being out in the community. This Sunday we are actually not having "church" rather everyone is going to various places in the community to volunteer for the morning. And we are a rather large church so hopefully we can do a lot of good in just a few hours! Email me if you want the specifics, I don't really want to put our location online!
Your church sounds very innovative. I hope you blog about the volunteer experience.
Also - It looks fairly certain that we'll be heading up the West Coast first so we may get an opportunity to meet up!
I've traveled all over the country, but my dream is to go to Alaska. My cousin is stationed there now, and I'm dying to go visit her.
The blogging community here has done several events to support the Home of the Sparrow:
Who would you want to meet and where would you want to go if you could travel anywhere in the USA? http://bit.ly/debeCd #giveeveryday
I've never been to Colorado, but I'd really love to see those Rocky Mountains!
In Chattanooga, I'm involved with our Junior League, and we are doing some great stuff with teaching kids about healthy eating habits, as well as providing mothers with baby basics classes, and we end it with a baby shower for mothers who may need some extra help preparing for their new arrivals!
Also, our aquarium is beyond amazing. Darah and I go every Monday!
The Junior League sounds like a great organization! I'm bookmarking the website right now for future reference...
You MUST check this guy out! He has done so many great things. My heart burns to do what he does.
Will read you journey with great interest. May God guide and protect you on this adventure.
Let's see-off the top of my head, I would say our favorite museums for the kids have been Discovery Gateway in Salt Lake City, COSI in Columbus OH, Strong Museum of Play in Rochester NY, Imagine Children's Museum in Everett WA, and Kohl Children's Museum in Glenview IL. Plenty of great ones in the ACM and ASTC programs though. We also love looking for new parks & playgrounds-there are some real gems out there in surprising locations. I think our son's favorite RV park was Orange Grove RV park in Bakersfield, CA-it's in the middle of an orange grove and you are allowed to pick & eat as many as you like. We were there in January and the oranges were wonderful! We also love the Bill Frederick Park at Turkey Lake in Orlando-a gorgeous, inexpensive park close to all the touristy things in Orlando if you want to go that route.
Thank you for your recommendations, Kim! I just bookmarked several of those websites. We actually went to the Imagine Children's Museum in Everett last year and had a great time - especially on the rooftop! :)
We're beginning to map our route for #giveeveryday. Where do YOU think we should go? Your ideas, please. http://bit.ly/debeCd
The New Horizons Ministry in Canon City, CO is a neat organization, one I always wanted to volunteer with. Young ladies volunteer to become full-time nannies for babies whose mothers are in prison. Check 'em out at http://www.newhorizonsministries.net.
Are you guys considering going into Mexico and Canada too? (I know you will all have passports soon, anyway!) For a long time my husband and I have worked with various churches in Mexico, and one of my favorites has always been a tiny church in Naco, Mexico. Over the past few years, we've gone down and helped expand their church facilities, add an internet cafe (which is in desperate need of new computers and probably some kind of handiwork that's beyond my capabilities, last time we were there the pastor's wife told me if they're using appliances in the kitchen the internet stops working!) Their newest venture is my favorite though: after identifying the lack of employment as one of the biggest dangers to their community (too many turn to human trafficking/drug dealing out of necessity) they raised money and purchased land that they're now farming. They have about 12 acres, and are growing watermelons on part of it right now and shipping them to Mexico City. Its created five full time jobs for their little community, and they want to keep expanding and grow produce for their town as well and hopefully keep adding more jobs. We helped pick watermelons when we visited in July.
Stephanie, if you come through Salt Lake City, Welfare Square might be a place of interest. You can see more here: http://lds.org/placestovisit/location/0,10634,5305-1-1-1,00.html
There is also a fabulous little Children's Museum in Odgen (about 45 minutes North of SLC). It is called the Tree House Museum. My children love it and it is truly a hidden gem. If you decide to go, I would love to meet you there :)
I just added Welfare Square to our list of places to visit. Thanks for the suggestion!
We'll also keep the Treehouse Museum in mind. I googled it and it looks like a super fun place for small children.
Hope to meet you in the coming year!
You should check out http://wearethatfamily.com/ they are a mom-blogger and her family changing the world through setting up Mercy House a maternity home in Africa. This family are definitely worth a visit!
I'm familiar with Kristen and so impressed by her family's world-changing ways. Perhaps we'll get to stop and have dinner with them somewhere along our journey?
Stop by El Paso, Texas! Our church (crossofgracechurch.org) has a new senior pastor - our dear friend Ricky, who is barely 24! He's an amazing preacher. We also work with our local pregnancy help center, which is an amazing resource to those in need. If you come on down we'll make you some good Mexican food lol!
I'm really hoping you visit me in northwest indiana or chicago, too! :)
Wouldn't that be wonderful? I hope so too!
If you make it to the middle of the country, you might want to stop by the Heifer International headquarters in Little Rock, AR. (www.heifer.org) We have an education center that teaches about what we are doing with hands on learning and lots of room on our grounds for the kids to stretch their legs. There is an RV park just across the river (not even a half mile away) and a kid's museum less than a mile away as well.
If you want more info, you can contact me through my email or find me at http://www.fletcherville.blogspot.com
Happy and Safe travels!
Thank you for the invitation, Marcia! We'll definitely keep Heifer International in-mind as plan our travels in the upcoming year.
If you come to Minnesota you must visit Woodland Hills Church in Saint Paul. This church has a heart for the city & serves those in need. (the kids would also love the Como Zoo--its free!)