Monday, August 31, 2009

Because She's Just That Special...

we love you, keri

We have a very special gal on staff with us. Keri, ex-YWAMER, turned Peace Corp, who ended up on our doorstep a year and a half ago. It's amazing how fast time flies. You think a year and a half is forever until it comes and you realize how fast it has gone. Keri's time with Peace Corp is ending, meaning she is leaving next week. But we are super excited about what the future holds for our friend! To celebrate Keri, honor her committed work with Ten Thousand Homes, and just say we love and appreciate you, we planned a day of surprises for her. From 8 AM to 8 PM, her day was chocked full of love. Hot stone massage, breakfast, shopping, a movie, a sushi lunch, hair cut and style at the salon, and then a huge party with everyone. It was loads of fun!

sushi for lunch

My favorite was the salon because I got to participate in on the fun! Keri, Brittany, and I went for a new do. Laughing, being pampered, and drinking our smoothies...it was a blast! There's something about going to a salon with a group of girls. It's like that's the way it should be.

before

britt's cut

keri's cut

my cut

after

The party was so much fun, although some of us concluded that, without the Africans, it might have been a bit on the boring side. They just have this amazing ability, through song, to bring so much life and joy. It even got Keri dancing!

dancing line

dancing away

At the end of the evening, Jeremy said a few words and presented her with handwritten letters expressing in writing how much we love her. And our African friends presented her with a wrap to show their gratitude. Keri, we love you!

keri's gift

A special thanks to everyone who participated to make this day possible.
And thanks to Brittany who played a HUGE role in organizing the day!


Sunday, August 30, 2009

Stuffed Mushrooms

stuffed mushrooms

We had a special party here Friday night. I knew it was the perfect opportunity to make those stuffed mushrooms I've been eyeing over on Pioneer Woman's food blog. The only changes I made were ground beef and bacon instead of ground sausage (I've never found ground sausage here in Africa). They were incredible!

yummy mushroom

Saturday, August 29, 2009

I Love It When...

sweet flower

My little girl picks me some of these.
It happens almost daily.
And I love it!

flowers for mommy

Friday, August 28, 2009

Sassy Frass Scrappy Purse

sassy frass scappy purses

These are what have filled my needles lately. More on why later. Today I thought I would share this very simple pattern with you. This is an easy little girls knit purse that I call the Sassy Frass Scrappy Purse because it’s the perfect project to use up that leftover yarn from bigger projects. As you can see from my instructions, it is very versatile. You can make it in any size you want!

scrappy purse

Materials
Size 7 needles
Color A: Some kind of frilly, feathery yarn
Color B: Medium weight yarn
tapestry needle

Rectangular, Vertical Purse
With Color A, CO 20 sts.
Knit 1 row.
Join Color B and knit every row for 12 in.
Join Color A and knit 1 row.
BO

Rectangular, Horizontal Purse
With Color A, CO 30 sts.
Knit 1 row.
Join Color B and knit every row for 12 in.
Join Color A and knit for 1 row.
BO

Strap
With Color A & B held together,
CO anywhere from 50-75 sts.*
BO

Finishing
Sew sides of purse together.
Sew strap onto purse.
Weave in ends.

Turn inside out and you have a little girl’s purse! If you want to add to it, you can cut flowers out of felt and sew them on or crochet little flowers to sew on.

*You can make the strap as long or short as you want. I like the longer strap for the vertical purse and the shorter one for the horizontal purse.

This pattern is available for personal use only. Please do not profit off this pattern.
Pattern is the property of Jennifer Price.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Handing Out Bit By Bit

Lerato Molluli

Do you remember my call to all knitters and the knitting for charity opportunity I presented several months ago? Well, I'm so happy to show some of the progress! Squares, vests, and hats began pouring in from all over the world, so the Ten Thousand Homes ladies began sewing squares together to make some very beautiful warmth for the kids.

lynn and chelsey

sewing

Each blanket is personalized with the child's initials or name. What a great gift of love for these children to cherish. It makes Mandla Phiri feel like a king!

Phiri Mandla

His sister, Zodwa, also received a beautiful blanket. Soon you will be able to read Mandla and Zodwa's story here in this spot.

zodwa phiri

A little red, white, and blue love straight from the USA for Khethebahle Mthabela.

khethebahle mthabela

Her brother, Siyabonga, also made out with some goodness.

siyabonga mthabela

A special thanks to Ronda and Sandy over at Knit-A-Square for challenging knitters to keep the orphans of Africa warm! You can read Knit A Square's latest ezine for more news of their work, including the partnership with Ten Thousand Homes, and more opportunities to get involved. I will be posting more pictures as we hand out more items but you can also visit my flickr set to see the progress!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Tender Treasure :: The Value Of Water


This week's prayer focus here at Ten Thousand Homes was on water. Water? Yes, water. It is a precious commodity that we, in the West, often take for granted. Can you imagine living in a dry, hot community, waiting for the water truck to come every week to fill up the community watering hole? What if the truck is late? Or it doesn't come at all? How do you cook? Stay hydrated? Bathe?

Like I said, we take it for granted. We get so used to turning on the faucet and the water freely running. The thought of water not running through the faucet doesn't even cross our minds. In America, the average individual daily consumption of water is 159 gallons, while more than half the world's population lives on 25 gallons.

This is not intended to be some sort of guilt trip, but rather offering a different perspective. I challenge you this week, every time you turn on the faucet, take a shower, or wash your clothes, to use it as a reminder to pray for the kids of Africa. We work in the communities of Kabokweni, Mbonisweni, and Dwaleni. Let's pray these kids see a glimpse of their Father's heart for them and begin to walk in the hope and freedom that Jesus gives us.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Reading...The Lost Choice


It seems these days it takes me forever to get through a book. I choose to read at night before I go to bed and my eyes seem to doze after only a few pages. After about a month, I finally finished The Lost Choice by Andy Andrews. It's an interesting story line, focusing on 3 relics that have passed through the hands of some amazing men and women. George Washington Carver, Joan of Arc, William Wallace, John Adams, and Oskar Schindler, to name a few, and the amazing things these people did. Their amazing acts seem to follow the interesting message these relics contained. By your hand, the people shall be free. Shall be fed. Shall live. I don't necessarily believe it was the relics that gave these men and women the power to do their heroic and history remembering deeds.

But Chapter 16 of the book provoked some interesting thought as I read the words that seemed to jump out of the page. "I'm starting to believe that I have spent my entire life playing defense, reacting to whatever happens instead of making things happen. They all had ideas or a cause or whatever, but we remember them - the world changed - because of the action they took! They played offense!" Are there some areas in our lives where we need to play offense? Are there things God is telling us but fear or insecurity keeps us from stepping out and making it happen? My challenge for myself, and hopefully anyone reading this, would be to be people that make things happen. That I (we) would be able to rise above the reasons why I can't, trust God to move through me, and play offense! What do you think? Want to rise to the challenge with me?

Monday, August 24, 2009

My Birthday Fun

my flower

Can I just say...I love my birthday! I hope that doesn't sound selfish, but I do! I actually just love birthdays in general. I love making someone feel loved and special on their day. So when it's my day, it's extra fun for me! My kids also really get into it, making me special drawings, repeatedly telling me happy birthday, and telling everyone else it's my birthday. They are so sweet. They couldn't wait to give me my personalized art, so they begged to give it to me the night before. Joshua got extra creative putting a message after every bit that I unfolded. My favorite...Mommy, you rock!

my birthday cards

This year I got treated by Lindsey to my second ever pedicure! Boy, was it nice! An hour long pampering and who wouldn't love the end results? Soft feet and pretty toes!

my pedicure

While I anxiously awaited the arrival of my husband from the US of A, Anneke and I went for coffee. I love coffee chats!

My wonderful husband, despite arriving jetlagged, made sure that my day was great. And my wonderful friends put together a great party! My request was cream cheese icing. It was wonderful on that chocolate cake! Just a word of advice...if you are going for a surprise party, don't tell Rich! :)

happy birthday jen

jen is the coolest

jen is amazing

Since Jeremy was gone most of my actual birthday, we continued the celebrations on Saturday by going for lunch at a cafe. The kids enjoyed the playground afterwards, and I enjoyed my new yarn and project!

smelling the flowers

joshua

emma g

purple project

Yes, it was a great birthday indeed!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Banana, Chocolate Spring Rolls

So when we went to the Citrus Festival a few weeks ago, there was a food stand making banana and chocolate spring rolls. They were delish! And oh, so easy! Here's the scoop.

Buy spring roll pastry paper.
Slice a banana in half longwise and
then slice those 2 halves longwise, making 4 slices.
Place banana in corner. Sprinkle some chocolate chips on top.

placing the goods

Roll up, making sure to fold in sides as you go.

rolling up

almost rolled

You can even roll them up ahead of time and stick them in the fridge until ready to cook. When ready, heat oil in pan. When oil is hot, place rolls in pan. Brown on all sides.

all ready to cook

Let cool slightly or you will burn your tongue!

cooked roll

first bite

Enjoy!

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