Archive | April, 2015

today, i am grateful for . . . (day 6)

9 Apr
Image from www. imgarcade.com

Image from www. imgarcade.com

we believe in practical compassion.

those are the first spoken words in the “shoe that grows” video. hearing them really struck a chord with me—don’t they with you?

the fact of the matter is, these days, it’s very easy to write an article or share a post about the indignities suffered by the poor all around the world (heck, even i am guilty of that.) we rant and rave about it on social media, and somehow, in its own way, it assuages the guilt we feel for not being able to do anything about it. this is how i do my part seems to be the mind-set. now, i’m not saying writing about these issues isn’t important. they are because yes, we need to be reminded and remind each other of them constantly. but sometimes, i can’t help but feel like we talk and talk and talk—and do nothing.

and that’s why the idea of the shoe that grows really just made me go, wow! these people went beyond seeing and talking about the problem to actually really thinking long and hard about how to address it in a very practical way. to be honest, i’m actually just a little envious of whoever said, “okay, let’s sit down and find a solution to this.”how exciting that must have been.

today, we tout innovations that allow us to “experience” movies or “wear” computers, but its innovations like this that should be getting attention. imagine the practicality and feasibility of having one pair of shoes you are sure you could fit into for the next 4 or  5 years: an extendable shoe! that may seem like something not worth singing praises over for those of us who take having footwear for granted, but for children who walk to school under the scorching sun or people who get around barefoot through the rain and muddy, filthy streets, it is something.

it really is heartening to know that enough people have seen this need and have supported this endeavor. it gives me so much hope that there are people who have a mind-set that sees innovations in this way: going beyond thinking of ways to make our lives easier (or put in another way, make us lazier) and actually considering applications that can address real-life issues and concerns.

i’m sure there are many others who have come up with brilliant ideas like this. i can’t wait to hear about the next one.

P.S.

If you want to learn more about the organization and how you can support it, visit https://theshoethatgrows.org.

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#100daysofgratitude

1.i am grateful for the capacity to express myself through the “printed” word and the freedom to do so.

2. i am grateful for sweet summer rainshowers that lift up the soul and energize the spirit.

3. i thank God for the gift of nephews and nieces who remind me that joy can be found even in the simplest of things.

4. i am thankful for a God of second and third and fourth chances: after so long and after so many wrong turns, i have found the one i want to spend the rest of my life with—a kind, generous, funny man with a good heart.

5. thank God for wonderfully supportive, talented, creative, gracious friends with big hearts.

6. i am thankful for people who inspire me to do and not just think, who help me realize that i can always contribute in some way.

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today, i am grateful for . . . (day 5)

5 Apr
my boyfriend and me with our photographer headed to our first shoot for the day :)

my boyfriend and me (or is it i?) with our photographer friend headed to our first shoot for the day 🙂

happy easter!

just came back from a two-day trip to bohol, one of the more beautiful islands here in the philippines, where we had our engagement photos  taken [pre-nups, they’re called here]. i am quite sun-burnt, and my shoulders, face, and back are slightly sore from spending too much (?) time under the sun. summers are especially harsh here, which makes the beach the perfect place to be, though amount of sunblock will keep you pain-free if you love to swim and spend your day in the sea as much as i do.

anyway, a friend who is a wedding photographer AND happened to be here in the country this month offered to do the photos, and we had such a good time. my soon-to-be husband and i are quite self-conscious people [translation: we aren’t particularly fond of “staged” photos], and we were just a little bit anxious about it. though it was a little awkward at times, overall, it was a lot of fun and laughter, especially because we had other friends who joined us on this trip for, ahem, moral support (most likely they just wanted an excuse to go on a quick vacation :D).

this trip also allowed us to visit the area where our photographer friend had set up a nonprofit organization that provides long-term help to a community of sea dwellers known locally as badjaos. a sea tribe that dates back to 500 AD, you can find them living in houses built over the water in the island of panglao. they fish for a living, but rising populations have depleted their main source of livelihood, forcing them to live in abject poverty and resort to begging in the streets.

called the badjao bridge, the organization offers the community a holistic program that gets their children to school, provides them with nutritious meals and basic healthcare, teaches adults sustainable livelihood options, and lets them experience the love of jesus.

sadly, we were running late for our boat back to cebu, so we only got to spend about 20 minutes there. but in that short span of time, we got to see the many, many children that they were trying to reach out to and help.

on a side note, navigating through the houses on stilts was quite the task since getting around meant stepping on two or three thin wobbly planks made of wood or bamboo. one wrong move and splat! down the slightly murky water you go.

their chieftain was gracious enough to take us on his bangka (a small motorized boat) to the pier right across where our boat was docked. that was definitely a first. in the many times i have been to bohol, i’ve never tried getting around on a badjao boat. we had a very quick but hearty lunch then (where we came across some badjao children who were begging), and then off to the boat we went, barely making it in time for it to leave.

though it was a quick adventure, it was most definitely one for the books.

P.S. if you want to learn more about badjao bridge, visit www.badjaobridge.org. for only $20 ( php 800) a month, you can send a child to school and influence the course of their future. there are also other ways you can help; just visit the site for more information.

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#100daysofgratitude

1.i am grateful for the capacity to express myself through the “printed” word and the freedom to do so.

2. i am grateful for sweet summer rainshowers that lift up the soul and energize the spirit.

3. i thank God for the gift of nephews and nieces who remind me that joy can be found even in the simplest of things.

4. i am thankful for a God of second and third and fourth chances: after so long and after so many wrong turns, i have found the one i want to spend the rest of my life with—a kind, generous, funny man with a good heart.

5. thank God for wonderfully supportive, talented, creative, gracious friends with big hearts.