Monday, April 30, 2007

Carnival Booths

Plans are well underway for our KIDS CARNIVAL. We are asking all those who so kindly offered to make blankets and hats to have them sent to me (I can also come and pick them up!!) by the 1st of June. We would like to have as many as possible to sell at the Carnival. We will also be sending enough blankets so every child at the orphanage can have their own. We need at least 30 for the orphanage and hopefully another 20-30 to sell. A HUGE thank you to the many people who have emailed about helping with the blankets!

The planning committee for the KIDS CARNIVAL (aka Mari Lynn) has come up with a great idea to raise funds and to have our community and friends be involved in the KIDS CARNIVAL. We are asking local businesses, families & friends to sponsor one of our many booths at the Carnival. We are asking for a $100 donation per booth and as a "thank you" for the contribution we will give each company/family 2 Carnival bracelets. The bracelets can be used at the Carnival for unlimited access to all our booths and carnival games! Each booth will have a sign stating who the sponsor is. We have about 15 booths. Our kids are sponsoring one by collecting pop bottles so that should keep them busy for the next month or so! :-)

You can email Mari Lynn at if your family or business would like to sponsor a booth.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Alyssa in her orphanage

Below are 2 pictures of Alyssa when she lived at the Fenghuangyuan Orphanage. She is about 11 months old in the first picture and 14 months old in the second one.

Alyssa is in the front on the right side, not looking too happy. (Not the child with the circle)
This is 5 months before we adopted Alyssa

Alyssa is in the pink sweater on the right (eating a cracker). This was taken about 1 month before we had our "gotcha day" and she was finally in our arms!

This is Alyssa during the summer of 2005. She had been with us for 6 months.

Alyssa with Caleb and Dylan - one year after her adoption.

Alyssa with Caleb and Dylan just a couple of weeks ago - 2.5 years after her adoption. Yep, she is definitely perfect for our family!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Look at these cakes!

A few people have contacted me about auctioning CAKES at our KIDS CARNIVAL. I'm talking VERY talented people. I am putting some photos of the awesome cakes you can bid on and you can request your design for birthdays, anniversaries, graduation, whatever you like. Look at these sweet cakes! Be sure to look for these cake certificates at our Auction at the KIDS CARNIVAL. By the way, our date for the KIDS CARNIVAL is set for June 10th from 2-5 pm. We're not sure of the location (in Ch'town) but we will let you know.

Created by Mari Lynn Darrach - Cornwall, PEI
How sweet is this?

Created by Gail Hodder - Ch'town, PEI

This is so awesome!

Created by Gail Hodder - Ch'town, PEI
Beautiful strawberry!


We are also going to have a "Cookie Booth" at the CARNIVAL and here is just a little preview of what's in store for beautiful, DELICIOUS cookies. Gail Fodder is creating a whole selection of decorated, special cookies so this will be another highlight at the Carnival. I really wish I had some sort of talent like this. Incredible!


We are getting a GREAT response from people all over! We have handmade blankets being shipped from the East and West of the United States, we have some coming from Toronto, some from New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Charlottetown, PEI and Summerside, PEI. I can't wait to see them all - I know each one will be beautiful!

I still have material if anyone is interested in using it to make blankets. I don't have a sewing machine so I can't do them.

The Three Muskateers!

I'll post a "preview" of what will be going on at our KIDS CARNIVAL in the next post. It's going to be fabulous! Mari Lynn is "super planner" so it's going to be a great afternoon for the whole family!
Until then....

Friday, April 20, 2007

The Playground is a GO!

We received word from the Director of Alyssa's orphanage and she said they would be happy to have the playground put in. There are no building permits needed so we can go ahead with our plans to choose a playground, raise the funds and install it! She sent me some photos of where the outdoor playground will go at the orphanage.

The Director also selected some pictures of items she would like included in the playground area...Here they are...

It must be so exciting for them to look through books and imagine a playground they will have for all their kids. The playground will provide such fun and stimulation for the children. There are several older children living at the orphanage who will probably be there the rest of their childhood. I'm glad we can all help make it a more child friendly atmosphere! It will give the nannies a child safe area to take the children to play, interact together, laugh and enjoy being children!


We wired another donation to our contact in China today. She will be buying baby formula, 6 crib mattresses, dolls & balls for all the children and 6 new ride on cars/toys for the kids. Thank you to those who helped with this month's contribution!! The Director said she will email photos as soon as she can.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


So far there has been an incredible response to our blanket plea! I've had emails from people all across PEI, NS, NB and even in the U.S. WOW! God is so amazing! A very talented graphic artist from Saint John, NB is going to design our logo so we can print T-shirts. The logo is going to be amazing and will represent children of the world and the love we can share.

Please continue to email me if you can help make blankets and hats. I will get material if you need it.

My friend, Mari Lynn, has been updating me on her ideas for the Kids Carnival and it's going to be fantastic. We will do lots of advertising for this so everyone can have a chance to join us! We would love to have as many adoptive Island families as possible join us so our whole community can see what a blessing our children are. I also want to extend an invitation to our Chinese community as well as they were so welcoming and supportive of us during the Chinese New Year Celebration.

If anyone has a great idea for our Kids Carnival, PLEASE leave it in the comment section or email us. If you have a talent (clown, juggling, face painting, balloon animals, etc...) and would like to help with our Kids Carvinal...PLEASE let me know! We would love to have you join us. We are also looking for talented people to make creative cakes for our "cake walk"!!!


Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Calling all TALENTS

An example of the playground from the company we will hopefully be using to do the playground.

Good morning everyone!

Our family has been speaking with the Director of Alyssa’s orphanage and we have decided an outdoor playground would be an incredible addition to the Fenghuagyuan orphanage. Currently, the orphanage doesn’t have any play equipment inside or outside of the orphanage. We are working on getting more toys and play things inside the orphanage but an outdoor playground is a much bigger project. We are going to raise $4000 for the playground and have an organization in China install it. Our whole family is so excited about this.
Director Lei sounds very excited as well and we know it will be a great asset for the nannies and for all the children!

We are looking for individuals to help us make blankets and baby hats. I know a lot of you are VERY talented with a sewing machine or knitting needles!!! Our goal is to sell the blankets with 100% of the profits going towards the outdoor playground. We are looking for baby/toddler/children’s knit or fleece hats to send over to the orphanages to help keep the children warm (especially those new babies without hair!)

If any of you have a sewing/knitting talent we would love to have you join us on this project. The blankets could be quilts, fleece blankets, flannel quilts, knit blankets, etc… BE CREATIVE! I’ve attached some photos as examples. Maybe you can’t sew but your mom or grandmother can and would love a project for the Spring. Maybe friends or family could get together and having a knitting party!
I am going to try and get some great fabric very cheap or even donated if I can or if anyone has fabric they can use that would be great.
Please email me if you would like to help and need some fabric! I’m hoping to find some great Chinese fabric – maybe with ladybugs, etc… I will find lots for boys and girls both.

A lady from Charlottetown met Alyssa and became very interested in her story and her orphanage. She and all her sisters are making quilts for all the children in Alyssa’s orphanage. They’ve named their project “Alyssa’s Kids”. What a blessing they are!

My friend Mari Lynn has offered to plan a KIDS CARNIVAL with Snugglebugs as the sponsor. We will definitely advertise for this and let everyone know when it’s going to be. Again, 100% of the proceeds will go towards the playground. We will also be selling the blankets at this event. There will be tons of kids carnival games, cotton candy, a chocolate fountain (WOW), candied apples, human bingo, cake walks, door prizes and a big gift basket from Snugglebugs.

As a side note…our family always accepts donations for the baby formula needed for the orphanage. The cost is about $540/month to feed all the babies. We are sending a donation this week to the orphanage to buy 6 crib mattresses, 6 ride-on cars, 20 balls, 20 dolls and some extra money for the formula. Thank you so much to those of you who contributed!!! The children are going to be thrilled to have their new toys!!!! I will post pictures on the blog as soon as we get them from our contact!
I can’t wait to hear from those who can help with our playground project!!! The Lord has been working in our family’s hearts and has brought so many new contacts to help with our projects. All things are possible with God. He is so much bigger than any plans I can make! Thank goodness for that!

Have a great day!


Please feel free to pass this on to any of your friends or family who may be interested as well!!!

Our friends' mother made this beautiful blanket for Alyssa. She absolutely LOVES it and has to have it on her bed at all times. These would be a huge hit as a sales item and also for the children in the orphanage.

Some examples of beautiful knit hats, booties and sweaters. The orphanage could use hats in all sizes but especially for the litte ones who sleep/lay in the cribs a lot of the day.

This is a very cozy blanket and very easy to make. I am even going to attempt making a few of these! It's double sided fleece - only two sides are sewn with the two ends being tied fleece.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Concert Rescheduled

The "Sponsor A Child" concert for Mikinduri Children of Hope ( has been rescheduled for MAY 5th (thanks to our big snow storm!). NINTH HOUR will still be playing and it will still be at 7:00 pm at the APM Center, Cornwall. PLEASE join us and be ready to sponsor a child.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

"Sponsor A Child" Concert

NINTH HOUR, a PEI Christian Rock band is hosting a concert to promote the sponsorship needs of many children in the village of Mikinduri, Kenya.

There will also be a time of worship with a contemporary worship team from Central Christian Church, Ch'town, PEI.

7:00 PM
APM Center, Cornwall, PEI

There are many beautiful, special children who need sponsorship! The children are orphans because their parents have died from AIDS. Please come out and support this village and the many precious children who need our help!

Some photos of the children needing sponsorship...

Please pass this on to all your contacts, family and friends. Encourage them to come out and enjoy the concert and open their hearts to these children!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Giving a piece of our hearts

Here are several pictures of our trip to the village to visit the children. It was a fantastic day and we are already planning what other items we can bring on our next trip. For any others who are reading this and are going south, the children need shoes, socks, school supplies and they also love getting toys, sunglasses and candy!!!

Enjoy the photos...what precious children!

We passed out all the stuff to everyone on the bus. What a blast we all had giving it out to the kids! We'd never met these people before and I think they thought we were a little crazy at first but they were feeling the love by the end of the trip!

Parents with the kids running after the jeep. The driver stopped so we could talk to the kids and hand out gifts to them.

Another group of children along the way. The bus driver (in the orange shirt) and one of the tour guides (in the brown shirt) even joined in. They thought it was great fun to hand out all the gifts to the children.

The taller girl in this photo (with the light blue shirt) is a Down Syndrome child and she loved the sunglasses. Her smile lit up her whole face when we put the glasses on her. We passed out candy, tooth brushes, mirrors, combs, coloring books and markers to these kids as well.

Below is a house of one of the little children in the above photo. Basically one room without windows or a door. It had the holes for them but nothing in them.

This is a group of boys who we met at the very end of our trip. By this time we were pretty much out of everything. We had a few combs left and some suckers. Note all the combs in the boy's hair.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

The Beautiful Children

Hello from Dominican Republic! What a beautiful spot! I wish I could post pictures but we are having trouble getting our pictures from our camera to the Internet. If we can't figure it out I will definitely post some when we get home.

I had bought a ton of supplies and toys for the children in PEI and had packed our bags ready for the airport. Just my luck, we get to the Halifax airpot at 4:00 in the morning and they tell me my luggage is too heavy! I didn't know there was a weight restriction! They told us it would cost $200 to pay for the extra weight. Well, Peggy, Matt, Chris and I opened up all our suitcases and carry on bags to move things around. I kept insisting it was very important we take all the stuff for the kids (it filled almost one entire suitcase and was the cause of the weight issue!). We finally got it all worked out with all of us carrying heavy bags onto the plane so our checked in bags wouldn't be so heavy. IT WAS SO WORTH IT!
We were able to go into a few villages and visit many children. We went on a Jeep Safari with about 20 other people and we had so much stuff for the kids we just kept passing it down to everyone on the jeep/bus and telling them to pass it out to the kids. We all had a ball. I had packed scribblers, pencils, crayons, markers, pens, looseleaf, erasers, pencil sharpeners, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hair clips, bouncy balls, purses for the girls, hairbrushes, mirrors, combs, sunglasses, stickers and BAGS OF CANDY! Definitely a favorite with the kids. The kids would run after the jeep and we would throw stuff out the back. Quite a few times the driver pulled over so we could personally give out stuff to the kids. They were so excited and it was such a humbling experience for all of us on the jeep. I can't wait to post the pictures because the children are absolutely precious and beautiful. Chris and I vowed we would come back and bring even more stuff and stay for awhile with the kids.

I wasn't able to visit the orphanage. It works a bit different here as families are very poor so they send their children to the orphanages but on weekends the kids go back with their parents. Because it is Easter and Holy Week the kids are with the parents and the orphanages are closed. Here in Puerto Plato there is a boys orphanage and a girls orphanage. Many locals have told me there are many children who need to be adopted!

When we come back again we will make sure it's not during Easter - both the orphanages and schools were closed because of the holidy. What was good, though, is we were able to visit many children in the villages at their homes and in the streets of their village. We saw their moms and talked with them as best we could with the language barrier.

With a bursting heart,