Thanksgiving 2012

Happy Thanksgiving 2012!

We’re home!

(Translation: I made it through 3 of the 4 flights, but chickened out on the last one and we drove home from Houston!)

And speaking of things I’m afraid of…

Last week was jam packed with ‘em. Planes, pills, and unfamiliar places, chock full of scraggly stray dogs. But there’s nothing like being surrounded by a group of talented/healthy/unafraid people to make you want to keep trying when you’re right there in the thick of it.

(My biggest fear now is that they all think I’m more wacko than they might have before- ha!)

But enough about me and my phobias. I want to share some more about the trip…

Our group leader, Shaun, warned us that re-entry would be hard, but we had no idea just how completely overwhelming adjusting to even the most familiar of blessings would be this Thanksgiving. The blue, and green, and orange ones…the twinkly, fragrant, warm ones.

I’m so thankful for Them today. We may not be able to share those kinds of blessings with the folks we met in Peru, but we can share our time, talents, and support- and I’m thankful for the Nudge to do more of that.

I don’t know exactly how to “sum up” everything else we experienced, but I do know this:

There are these people out there. They live in third world countries. They didn’t choose to live in them- they were just born in them. They want to enjoy life just like we do. They want to have homes and things and families, just like we do. They want to share meals and Love, just like we do.

And as for the ones we got to spend the most time with in the dusty mountains of Peru- they’re a super sunny bunch, all things considered, and I imagine they’d write much better blog posts about what really matters than I could ever do.

Speaking of blog posts, remember when I told you about Estefania and her dad the other day?

Well, I had to go back and edit that post because I forgot to mention that he told us that he was able to have surgery because of donations made to Compassion’s CIV fund. I asked him how he got to and from the doctor (not hospital) that fixed his shattered back. His answer: they carried him. No 911 or ambulances in the mountains of Peru.

I’m thankful for the access we have to those kinds of things today.

I chose not to show you a photo of a heart-wrenching moment we shared in my last post because it was too fresh…too raw…too painful. But I’ve had some time to think about it now, and I feel like today’s the right day to share with you how badly her dad wants to be able to work again, and how thankful he is for God and Compassion.

I also want you to know that Estefania instinctively got up right when he finished that sentence to get him a tissue, and he smiled so big a few seconds later. We may have more in the way of money than they do- but I’ve experienced firsthand that what they have to share with us is worth so, so much more than $38/month.

I also wanted to mention a little more about Nicolasa and Christian again in today’s post.

Because of Compassion International, Christian is able to attend school. And because he is able to attend school, his mom is able to work, six days a week, 12 hours a day, at a local factory. I’ll never forget climbing up and down the hill that leads to and away from their house…

If you look up the word, “treacherous” in the dictionary I’m pretty sure you’d find a picture of it there. (Did I mention that rocks were continually falling down it? #NerveWracking) Christian carries buckets up water up that thing twice a day on the two days a week it’s available.

I’m thankful for Hope, and the opportunity to see how It comforts helpful kids and their hardworking mamas.

I’m also thankful for Fresia…which by the way, is pronounced “Freh-see-uh”. (who knew?)

I’m thankful that, as her sponsor, I can visit her and send her emails and letters whenever I want. I’m thankful that she pinky swear-promised she’d write me lots of letters, too!

I’m thankful for all the photos we have from our visits with her…the good, the sad, and the overexposed…

I’m thankful for her grandparents who take such Good care of her and her siblings…

…and I’m thankful that the camera caught her looking at me that way.

I’m thankful for our time together at the zoo in Lima. It was the first time Fresia’s ever been anywhere outside of her community.

I’m thankful for the time we got to spend together at her very first restaurant, too…

…and I’m thankful for the guts it took her grandma to share the hard-to-talk-about things she shared with us there.

Fresia is one incredible little lady, and I’m so thankful to know what it feels like to have the back of my shirt sink in this way…

That photo was taken as we were saying our final see ya laters on Saturday.

So was this one…

I’ve stared at it so much since we’ve been back. Fresia pulled back teary-eyed after Kevin hugged her for the last time, so I asked him what he said to her as we were walking back to our bus. This is what he told me:

“I shared with her that God has big plans for her life. I wanted to plant the seeds of Hope. I wanted her to hear it. I wanted her to believe it because there’s so much power in Belief.”

I’m so thankful for the opportunity to see firsthand what sponsoring Fresia through Compassion International really is.

We’ve seen her face, and called her name. We’ve held her in our arms and felt her joy. We’ve gotten lost in her smile, and heard the story behind her two front teeth.

Just like all of the kids in Compassion‘s sponsorship program, she’s more than a picture in the mail. She’s a real person whose whole future changed the day someone from Compassion International knocked on her door. And for that, we’re so thankful today.

PS- Here’s a short video of some of our time with Fresia! (Subscribers will have to click over to our blog to watch.)

Want more information about Compassion International? Click here to read more about their Child Development Model, their History, and their Financial Integrity.

 

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Comments

  1. says

    Oh my gosh–what a beautiful post and perfect time to share. So many pictures, words, experiences you have had that I could comment on. Thank you for sharing your amazing experience. I pray for these people–strong, brave, happy, hopeful…God Bless them all. Thank you.

  2. says

    Absolutely eye opening, and I kinda figured you would all have a hard time coming back around this time with all the Black Friday stuff around… It’s important to remember where true worth is really found. Thank you!

  3. Kelly says

    Wow! Thank you Kevin and Layla for sharing all you have been through! Such emotional and poweful stuff. To think people have to live such difficult lives. I’m very sure you both brought so much joy and sunshine with your wonderful and uplifing personalities. I cried at each post. It is very emotional and yet the joy and smiles they give are just amazing! Holy! PS Kevin your Mom’s posts were wonderful! She is such a sweet and loving person! You are one lucky fellow! Love you guys!!!!!

  4. Karen Dorans says

    What a lovely post. My family has lost so much in the economic down turn including a future retirement which will be very different to the one we thought it would be! We lead a much simpler life and work hard to rebuild our future. Having said that in many ways we are happier and our simple life is one of pure luxury compared to so many people on this earth. We all need to be reminded of that, to be thankful for what we have and to pay it forward every opportunity we have.

    Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for that beautiful post!

  5. Urban Wife says

    Gosh, y’all. I’ve just been so incredibly moved by reading this post. Thank you so much for sharing your Compassion experience with us. It’s amazing the impact a single experience can have on our lives. God keep blessing y’all immensely. Happy Thanksgiving! :)

  6. Barb says

    oh my god you have me sitting here in tears. happy and sad tears. I look out on our farm and am so thankful for everything we have. Thankful i live in the “lucky country” Australia. Thank you for caring enough to sponsor this child. I couldn’t help but notice even the peruvians have done a little decorating. Maybe just a little pot with a plant, but a big thing for them in such a barren landscape .

  7. trish says

    So heartwarming…you.make.a.difference Layla and Kevin, I can see it in her eyes! You are all special people! Happy Thanksgiving.

  8. says

    Oh, Layla and Kevin, you’ve just made me cry!
    This is the most touching post I’ve seen in a long time.
    So I guess that, even though we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving here in Portugal, I’m thankful that there’s still people like you guys! Thank you for showing us that there’s more than this hectic, selfish life we live…

    Love from Portugal

  9. says

    I love this post. I love you. I don’t even know you, but I love you and your compassion.
    I have an privilege to work for a family foundation – one that pours their money into nonprofits both locally and internationally. I am human and I, like many others, often complain about their jobs constantly. Getting up early, long days of meetings and a boss that well, just doesn’t get you. But, your post and some prayers lately have helped me realize that regardless of the drama of office politics, we are helping people. Truly changing their lives for the better. I can put my issues aside and focus on what matters: giving these people that we help hope and love.

    Thank you helping me realize this. Thank you for bringing this wonderful organization to light on your blog. I hope it creates a ripple effect of love and changing perspectives as it has done for me.

    Peace and love to you and yours on this Thanksgiving Day.

  10. says

    What a touching post. I am sitting here with tears rolling down my cheeks. I am gonna hug my own a little tighter tonight thanks to you. I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving Day. And thank you for the gift of that post.

  11. says

    This post made me tear up! I have loved reading your posts about this incredible journey! You guys have changed Her life for the better and it’s so amazing to see the impact that such a small amount of money can have on those little lives! I hope to meet our compassion kids from Tanzania some day!!!

  12. says

    Thank you for sharing such a raw, emotional story. The pictures alone convey so much. You’re dead on when you talk about people not being able to help where they are born. I so often reflect on that.

  13. says

    Welcome home and my hope is that you were forever changed…as much as you have helped to change Fresia’s life and her families. Glad you are safe and don’t have to fly anymore!
    Happy Thanksgiving.

  14. Heather says

    While I am not celebrating Thanksgiving Day (I did here in Canada not too long ago!), I am humbled by your experiences in Peru, with Compassion, and with Fresia and her family. On a day that was particularly challenging for me, you have reminded me (in an amazing and unforgettable way!) to be grateful for all that I have and especially for all those I hold close to my heart. I thank you for that.

  15. says

    My husband is an AF pilot and hates to fly unless he’s at the controls, so don’t feel bad! :) Thanks for going, being open and vulnerable, and sharing all that with the public! Blessings on you two!!!

  16. Adrienne says

    “Be blessed and be a blessing.” is ringing in my ears after watching that. God is so good…Awesome!

  17. Amy Perkey says

    Tears are streaming down my face. I’m so moved. I too have so many fears about traveling but what BEAUTIFUL life changing moments – I have 3 compassion children I would love to meet one day. My heart is bursting with emotion as I read your blog.

    I follow your blog all the time for the last few years. This one is by far the most moving. Thank you for being vulnerable & sharing with your readers.
    God is using you a MIGHTY ways. Thank you.

  18. Barbara F says

    Layla and Kevin, thank you so much for the beautiful posts about your experiences in Peru – they have completely touched my heart. I sponsor a child through World Vision – another wonderful organization. My sponsored child lives in Africa and has never seemed very real to me. Thanks so much for pictures and stories about Fresia, it has really opened my eyes to all the good our monthly donation does for a child in a far off place.

    Bless you for caring and for making a difference!
    Barbara

  19. says

    Like so many others have already said I am sat here with tears streaming down my face and just wanted to thank you for your honesty. The returning home was the hardest part of my trip to Uganda a few years ago, I walked around my home town in shock that I had changed so much but nothing here had. People had so much and yet were still consumed by wanting more. I am so pleased you faced your fears for nemiries that will last a life time for you and Fresia. I can imagine her having hope because of your generocity and visit. Thanks be to God

  20. says

    Beautiful post . . .love seeing your connections, warmth, truth, compassion found in each photo. The imprint of your love and hope is evident.
    Blessings to you and your husband . . .
    Love, Lynne

  21. Ter'e Crow Lindsay says

    I’m so glad to know that I am not the only one that read this incredible post, and was left in tears.

    For me, Manna Mama said it all. God bless your hearts. I felt as tho I was walking beside you, as I read your beautiful post.

    You and Kev are something else…………….
    Welcome home. And thanks for going and doing what many of us cannot. xoxox

  22. Terry says

    Simply beautiful. What an absolutely breathtaking way to begin this post, with those 2 pics comparing your world and Fresia’s world. Amazingly and obviously, LOVE exists in both places. God IS Love. Perfect Love casts out fear. Empowered by Love and Compassion, you were able to move beyond your fears and be the hands and feet of Christ, to carry the Light of Christ to people living in darkness. Thank you both for going! I have loved reading your posts. loved studying the faces and details in your photographs.
    I am thankful you arrived home safely. May the Lord use every aspect of your journey to Peru and back for His glory and for the good of others.

  23. says

    It will be an awkward time of the year to readjust to living in a first world country. While adopting, I visited my children’s homeland of Haiti twice. I have never found comfort. And, I didn’t come home during a time of blatant consumerism… I hate the season between Thanksgiving and Christmas!
    .

  24. says

    I got teary eyed watching the video. It was beautiful and so compelling. Mission trips are such a sobering reminder of all the material wealth we are surrounded by. Wealth that can sometimes be a hinderance to the joy that can be found in Christ. It is apparent from this video that your monthly contribution to Compassion is used wisely and blessed by God. It is also apparent that Fressia will treasure these moments forever.
    I also touched by this post because my husband and I are in the process of moving forward with adoption from Peru. Last month we found out that God didn’t have plans for us to adopt from Colombia. Your trip to Peru came at just the right time and has definitely given me a compassion for the orphans in Peru. A desire to bring a little Peruvian home and hug them tightly in my arms and bring them into our family. Thank you for being a part of this process!

  25. says

    the photos themselves brought tears. and then your words squeezed my heart. i can’t watch the video just yet, but wanted you to know i am so very thankful that you and kevin had the opportunity to go on this trip and are sharing it with us.
    you are loved and appreciated.

  26. Dineen says

    What a beautiful and moving post. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences in Peru and your wonderful meeting with Fresia.

  27. Dawn says

    Kevin and Layla, Thanks for sharig your trip and emotions with us. It is eye opening! The video really touched my heart! I am Thankful for you guys and your compassion. Keep up the great work you do in all things. Happy Thanksgiving to all.

  28. says

    Dear Layla & Kevin,

    I’ve been following all along on your journey to Peru, and my heart feels so heavy right now. What you’ve captured for us, through your words, photographs and video is priceless and humbling. I love that you powered through your fears and made this journey possible, and so gratiously shared it with all of us. We all have so much to be thankful for, even the most simplest blessings.

    Happy Thanksgiving my friends,

    oxox,
    Jennifer

  29. says

    Oh Layla. You really are my favorite blogger.
    I love this post to pieces.
    And I love that little girl and her sweet family too.
    Thank you for sharing their lives with us so that I can sit here and realize what its really all about this holiday season.
    And PS- I have the exact same phobias that you do.
    So I get how hard it was to get there and home.
    God Bless you!

  30. says

    I was doing “okay” until I read what Kevin said to her during their final goodbye. Now I have tears in my eyes.

    We take so much for granted in this country. We rush about, we work 60-70 hour weeks, we gather ‘stuff’ to own, we waste resources, we take so very little time to truly ‘live’. Most of us have no true idea of what those individuals living in third world countries really deal with on a day to day basis. Yet, they find joy in the simplest of things.

    This sounds like it was an incredible trip, a once-in-a-lifetime journey for you both, and I can tell by the way you describe it all, that it is a journey that will remain close to your hearts and minds forever.

    Thanks for sharing it with your readers.

  31. Gabby says

    I read your blog often, though I don’t comment much at all. But I wanted to say Thank You for this post! It brought tears to my eyes as well.

    I’m Hispanic and was born in Costa Rica (though I was born American), so I have seen some of the hardships these humble people in these countries. My family was quite blessed, though. And when I was a pre-teen, my parents oversee the missionary efforts of our church in Honduras. Now THAT is a poor country, and some of the pictures you took reminded me of some of the homes of people we visited (though I have to say, I think even they seemed better off than some of these).

    But what binds them all is their gratitude for what they HAVE, and the humbleness to thank the Lord for it. Isn’t that amazing?!

    My mother tells my siblings and I that we should count ourselves very blessed to have been born in and lived in this countries, as we not only have a cosmopolitan view of life, but we know what many people like this go through.

    I find myself now with a place to live, a great job that pays well, a husband who has a job he loves that also pays him well, sometimes getting to caught up in material things, as many in the U.S. tend to do. But the older I get, I find that it’s experiences and the people around us that matter, not the things.

    So glad you got to experience this and share it with us. Thank you!

  32. Maureen says

    So nice to see bloggers using their platform for such good. You didn’t just bless Fresia and her family, you blessed all of us as well. Keep spreading God’s love and inspiring us!

    May you be blessed for your love, compassion and heart!

  33. says

    Oh Layla….you and Kevin are just such a blessing. Not only to the blogworld, but now to those people in Peru. You brought the love and compassion of Jesus Christ and wrapped it around them with your hugs. Bless you both!!

    xoxo laurie

  34. Alicia Quiles says

    Well, I am sitting here with tears in my eyes!! Your selflessness and compassion, Layla and Kevin, has really inspired me. You have reminded me of what is truly important: being the hands and feet of Jesus. It’s so easy to forget that in the midst of our busy lives. Thanks for the reminder! God bless you both!

  35. Julie says

    Dear Lord. The picture of that baby with her little hands clasped together, praying. Steals my heart.

  36. Geri says

    I cried for the whole video. You will always have that smile, that hug, and that twinkle in her eyes to remember always. It is a moment you will never forget. It is a moment FresIa will never forget too. It is unconditional love, just like every parent has for their child, no matter where they are or how they got there. God is smiling.

  37. Linnie says

    Oh well that just made me cry the whole way through, especially what your husband told Fresia. She’s a very lucky little girl to have you as sponsors. Thank you for sharing.

  38. yuko says

    Thank you Layla for this beautiful post. I couldn’t stop crying as I read this. What you experienced in Lima is a proof that God’s love is everywhere and you can find Him in every one of us.

    “You are blessed when you care. All the moment of being ‘care-full,’ you find yourselves cared for.” (Matthew 5:7)

    Thank you for sharing with us “how you care.” Your post reminds me we are made to care for each other. You and Kevin really inspired me. Happy holidays from upstate NY!
    ox Yuko

  39. Bethanie says

    Oh Layla,
    I thought the post was beautiful and was in tears…then I watched the video. How amazing for that precious little girl to have such a caring and compassionate couple like you and Kevin. The love on the faces of the two of you is what brought me to tears…in the picture where Kevin is saying good-bye…you can just tell he is speaking from his heart. How special for all of her “firsts” to be with you both. You’re Jesus with skin on…love that about you both.
    xoxo

  40. Lori H says

    OK, it sounds like I wasn’t alone, crying while reading this…especially reading what Kevin said to Fresia, and the video is priceless. Thanks for sharing your experiences!

  41. says

    Layla & Kevin, I just finally had the chance to sit down and read all your posts about your trip and I am grateful to you for sharing it with us. What an experience!! We are off to read more about Compassion. Thank you so much for writing about this trip and to Fresia for capturing our hearts with those two missing front teeth and big smile!

  42. Amy Radomski says

    Thank you for sharing…you’ve been blessed with the true meaning of Thanksgiving. The words your husband spoke to little Fresia were such a priceless gift to her. You can see the hope he gave her in her eyes.

  43. Cath says

    Layla,
    What a trip of a lifetime. My heart was joyful and heavy at the same time as I read your post. The simple gifts of water and shelter that I take for granted are enormous blessings for others, hard to even imagine.
    Your post inspired me to become involved; something I’ve wanted to do. Please keep us posted with updates.
    Blessings to you

  44. Marianne in Mo. says

    So glad you made the trip! But you just gotta quit making all of us cry! :) Seriously, your posts have touched my heart and I’m grateful to be able to sit here at a computer and talk about it. We went without when I was a child, living on welfare and the kindness of our church family. So I have an inkling of what it’s like to be poor, but not near as poor as many across the world. Being without taught me compassion, even as a young child. And it taught me to be humble and thank God for whatever I had. Can’t say others in my family got that like I did! I’m blessed for the life I have, and thankful for the kindnesses I was given way back in the 60’s and 70’s! And glad you’re both back home!!!

  45. says

    Hi, sweet friends!! Welcome back, so glad you got to experience this trip of a lifetime and share it with all of us. I loved reading about it all. We are indeed a blessed country and can’t even imagine not living the way we do, but there are lots of folks who do not. I know it was a blessing for all of you who were there sharing and for the folks you shared with. xoxo

  46. Culpepper says

    I plan to watch this video again and again. When I find myself being self absorbed or when it crosses my mind that what I have is not “enough”, this video will remind me that God has blessed me (and all of us Americans) with an abundance of blessings. I hate that I forget that sometimes. Thank you Layla and Kevin for the reminder.

  47. says

    enjoying reading about your trip – it is so inspiring. it’s amazing to realize how people live so differently than us, we take so much for granted, i’m afraid. thanks layla for sharing your experiences. it’s all so amazing.

  48. Steph says

    I want to thank you for posting about Compassion International and all of the emotions you felt with your visit. I have been sponsoring a little girl Katerina from Honduras for almost 2 years now and am so ashamed to say that I’ve never written…I’ve been afraid to write because I have so much and she has so little. I have gotten a couple of letters from her though, and Lord they make me smile. :) You have inspired me to write to Katerina, apologize for not writing until now, and start a relationship with her…I know that is why God put her card in my hand at the marriage conference, for my healing just as much as for hers. God bless you both!

  49. says

    How incredible that you got to share all of those “firsts” with her <3 Her praying at the table was priceless!!! Thank you for sharing your journey with us!!!!! God bless!!

  50. Stephanie says

    Remind me not to read posts like this at work anymore…I’m now sitting at my desk in a mess of tears. But it’s okay, because they are good tears and this post moved me to do something. Thank you both!

  51. rhonda says

    If this post doesn’t make you tear up I don’t know what would. Thank you for showing us all how wonderful the people you met are. Thank you for sharing with us how truly blessed we are.

  52. says

    Wow. This post is incredibly heartwarming, It’s amazing that you guys were able to not only contribute, but actually meet with the people whose lives you are helping.

    Someday, I hope to join Compassion too. It sounds like an awesome organization to donate to.

  53. Amy F says

    Wow… thanks for sharing something so intimate and personal. I dont’ cry easily but I got really teary eyed. Such a beautiful experience. Thanks again SO MUCH for sharing.

  54. says

    Oh my goodness … this touched my heart on so many levels. I absolutely love the photos of each of you hugging Fresia. The photo of Kev talking to her/saying good-bye drew the tears instantly. You two will be amazing parents.
    This post makes me so want to meet our Compassion child!
    Thank you for sharing your hearts. You’ve touched mine.

  55. Jennifer says

    I couldn’t help but read your post with tears streaming down my face – I then logged onto Compassion’s site and have 2 sweet boys I’ve selected to sponsor.

    Thank you for bringing this to my heart.

    God Bless You ~

  56. Amanda says

    What a blessing you both are to all who know you or get a glimpse of you through this blog! I find myself touched & teary eyed on many occasions by your kindness, honesty, love and beauty you share through your photography & design!! :)

  57. says

    I went on a service trip to Honduras last summer and I’ll be heading out on another to El Salvador this June. Although our physical experiences are very different, the underlying messages and the feelings you have when you return home are strikingly similar. I’m so glad you were able to write this post and share a portion of the feeling and experience to others.

  58. says

    I so loved all of these posts, thank you so much for sharing!

    My husband and I sponsor a little boy, Edgar, in the Phillippines. We’d love to visit him, but it’s just not realistic for us right now.

    Loved every bit of this and I LOVE what your husband said to Fresia as you were leaving!

  59. says

    I loved the way you described your shirt when she hugged you. Just right. What a priceless gift for you and Kevin to meet her in person and spend that time together. Thank you for being a voice for her and others…

  60. Kellie says

    What a precious post. That last picture of Kevin and your little girl was so tender it brought tears to my eyes. Your thoughts were so beautifully written. Thank you so much for sharing. Sometimes it’s so easy to get boxed in with our lives and problems we forget about others…especially those far away. Thanks for helping me remember.

  61. says

    This is the best post from your trip. Your honesty, your transparency, the way God touched you – it’s so touching. I loved it even more because I’ve been there with Compassion – two years ago. Having experienced it myself really made me appreciate and relate to all the bloggers on this particular trip.

  62. Jane-Ellen says

    You have blessed me today with this post! Thank You for touching my heart… I can only imagine how you both touched hers!

  63. PJ! says

    I finally read all of your posts. Big mistake, I’m at work and crying like a baby. You and Kevin are awesome. I know it took all you had to get on a plane, but look at all the blessings you experienced and those people will never forget you (I was once helped by some God fearing loving people myself). How comforting it is to know that God will soon put an end to all the bad & injustice that we see. This Scripture is one of my favorites Psalm 72:12-14, 16). Thanks for sharing your experience & reminding us what really matters :)

  64. says

    You brought tears to my eyes. We have been Compassion sponsors for 18 years. We’ve seen two wonderful children graduate from the program and our latest just left the program because her family is prospering! We have joyful sorrow when we say our good byes…but we know that our lives have been SO blessed by knowing all these children. Their selfless love for their families have touched us deeply. We now have our single Compassion girl in Ethiopia and hope to see her also graduate from the program. God has been so good to us and in one small way we have touched the lives of 4 children in 18 years. I know your life will never be the same. Thanks for sharing!

  65. says

    Laya and Kevin,

    I cannot begin to tell you how moving this story is. From start to finish, it was incredible. I am typing through tears to say thank you for sharing this. I don’t know when I’ve seen something so heartfelt. What a blessing you precious ones are, and what a blessing these sweet, dear people are, too.

    The Lord bless and keep you all…

    XO,

    Sheila.

  66. Sole says

    Wow…as I sit here crying I can’t help but think of how blessed we are every single day for what we have and what our children have. I am originally from Chile and I do know about poverty although I was priviledged to be raised in a middle income family and even though when times were difficult we never went without the basics. I loved what your husband said to Fresia…hope to those children is what they need…knowing that someone cares about them makes a difference. Thank you for opening our eyes and especially our hearts…when at this time of the year we are rushing to buy toys and make the holidays special…while families in Peru or other third world country just try to make ends meet and be lucky to have a hot meal every day.
    Thank you!

      • Sarah W says

        It’s amazing when the world wide web gets small like that – I was in the virtual book club and her blog really helped me through a rough time (can’t even begin to count the tears I cried reading it). She is so amazing! And so are you Layla, I’ve been following your blog for a while – wishing I was doing some of the things you have done to your lovely home – but I lost track of it for a time and there is a different vibe I got today when I went back through what I’ve missed over the last year. It’s a really good vibe!

  67. Margaret says

    Thank you for writing about your trip to Peru. I just added another Compassion child to my family. I have been wanting to do this for quite some time but wasn’t sure I could swing it financially. So a couple days ago I searched again and their she was. Camilita just had her 15th birthday. I know this sounds funny, but I chose Peru in honor of a foreign exchange student we had at my high school back in the 70’s. We became fast friends, but she was sent back home before I knew it. I think because of the pressures back home it was hard for her here in the States. Not sure, I never had a chance to say goodbye or get her address. I think of her often. Anyway, Camilita is about the same age as we were. And just as amazing God is the very next morning I was reviewed for a raise at work. Isn’t that just like Him.

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