Saturday, March 27, 2010

Long time no Blog

I haven't posted to the blog because I am just too busy! Work, side business, working out, kids' school and sports...it's just too much to fit into a day! We are currently planning our summer: beach trips, basketball camp and volunteering! This summer, Dylan and I will be volunteering for a week in an orphanage in the Dominican Republic!

The program is being organized by a non-profit organization called Orphanage Outreach, which has been working with orphanages in the Dominican Republic for fifteen years. The mission of Orphanage Outreach is to provide opportunities to orphaned, abandoned, and disadvantaged children. Its goals are to help the orphanage provide basic necessities, to provide a quality education, and to help the orphanages become self sufficient.

Each Orphanage Outreach volunteer has two significant roles: to donate important volunteer time while in the Dominican Republic, and to help raise funds necessary to fulfill Orphanage Outreach's mission.

As volunteers, we will be working in an educational learning camp for disadvantaged children. Children attending the camps rotate through learning stations including English, reading, health, art, recreation, and more. Volunteers sometimes work on physical work projects: digging, building, painting, etc., but the focus is on the children.

As fundraisers, we are helping to raise funds to not only cover our program fee, but to also provide the basic necessities at the orphanage: food, water, housing, transportation, supervision, medical and dental care, and more.

Orphanage Outreach is a small organization, is not government funded, and relies on the tax-deductible donations of individuals.
If you are willing to help, please click on the link to my personal fundraising page https://www.orphanage-outreach.org/estrella.php?trip_id=NzE5NQ . You can also make out a check to Orphanage Outreach (a tax-deductible 501-C-3 organization: U.S. federal tax id #58-2197227), and send it to me at my address so that I can forward your check onto Orphanage Outreach.

Dylan and I have already donated $200 toward our own program fee, and we'll be purchasing airline tickets as well. The program fee for the two of us totals $900 and is due in early June. We invite you to become involved in partnering with us in this effort. With your donation, we will be able to make a significant difference in these children's lives.

Whether you are interested in volunteering with our team, sponsoring our trip or just wishing us well, we appreciate your help.

Please visit my fundraising page if you are able to donate any amount.
https://www.orphanage-outreach.org/estrella.php?trip_id=NzE5NQ

Thanks!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Griswald Christmas!

Our family, consisting of 8 adults and 9 kids (ages 10 months thru 18), spent several days this Christmas in a gorgeous luxury cabin in the mountains in NC. There was too much ice on the road leading up to our cabin, so once my brother in law got all of us (and our stuff) up the mountain into the cabin in his truck, we pretty much had to stay put! It was quite an experience with a bunch of kids, raised in SC and FL, who hadn't really experienced snow before. Oh, and all those electronic Christmas presents? We had no power on Christmas day. So...what did we do? We had SO much fun! We...

did lots of sleigh riding
made snow angels
built a snow-lady
had snowball fights
played foosball
played more foosball
sparklers
kids put on a skit :)
went in the hot tub
played hide and seek
opened presents (that we couldn't plug in)
drank coffee made in the fireplace
ate food cooked on the grill (lasagna, pie, ham)
ate some more
ate even more
Oh...and Lana took her first steps!!!































No need to mention the flat tire that the three kids and I got on I26 at 11 pm on the way home. Thank goodness for Geico Roadside assistance.

MB

We went to MB for the day to see Santa at Hard Rock and stopped at the aquarium before heading home. :)






Monday, December 14, 2009

Maia is 4!








We celebrated with a fun, family birthday party for Maia on Sunday. Then today, I took Maia to see The Princess and the Frog then took her out for Chik Fil-a and milkshakes (her choice). The BIG excitement is that she gets to have gum now. Happy Birthday to the sweetest girl in the world! May God wrap his arms around your birth mother today, and always.

12.11.06



3 yrs ago, 12/11/06, we became a Family of 5 in China when we held our baby girl for the first time!Even though we waited so long for her,she was clearly NOT waiting for us! She was SO scared and SO sad(and had a really wacky haircut)but luckily, she quickly learned to love and trust us.We could all learn a lot from her courage on that day. Maia~ I am PROUD to be YOUR Mommy!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

T-Giving...Round 2



We enjoyed our second Thanksgiving feast in Hilton Head. I just love seeing all the cousins together :).