Give Back: A Special neighbor and no-sew blankets

Written By Amy

When we moved into our neighborhood, we had no idea that just a few houses away would live someone who would become an amaing blessing to our family.  Sandra is a kind, generous, beautiful, wise and an incredibly successful woman.  What impresses me most about her, however, is her heart for our kids.

When she is not traveling world-wide for business, you can find our children just hanging out at her house, going on ice-cream dates, baking, sleepovers, or even jumping on her bed (so I hear!).  Sandra saves a stash of HUGE candy bars just for our kids and their friends on Halloween.  She makes Hannah, Hunter, and Maddie feel so special and loved, which is an amazing blessing to Jon and me.

Each year she invites our kids, and her other special adopted-kids, Austin and Ashley over for a service project (see what I mean?).  This year it was making blankets for The Children’s Hospital.

 

                        Ashley, Sandra, Hannah, Maddie, Austin, Hunter

 

After the blankets were made, we took them down to The Children’s Hospital in Denver.  The kids got to hand-deliver them to the donation office and learn about who would receive the blankets.

 

If you are looking for a simple and fun project for your kids, try this!  You can donate them to homeless shelters, make baby ones for NIC-U’s, women’s shelters or hospitals….or give them as gifts to loved ones.

Here are the directions for making no-sew blankets:

1. Purchase fleece…about a yard and a half per side–bigger or smaller depending on the size of the blanket you want to make.  I like to have one side a pattern and the other side a coordinating solid.

2.  Lay the fabric out on the floor, one piece on top of the other.  Trim the edges so they line up.  On each corner cut out a notch about  5 inches by 5 inches  (about the length of the strips you will be cutting and tying).

3.  Begin on one side and cut even length and width strips all along the edge.  You will continue this along all four sides.

4. Tie each of the strips from the top and bottom together in a knot. When all strips are tied, you are done!

 

Sandra, we thank you for your generous and serving heart, and the example you are to all of us of what’s important in life.

PS: check out our blog site to see information about our neclkace give-away!

 

 

Would you like to join us?

Written By Jen

Hi Friends.  Amy and I want to bring a new dimension to Grace FULL Home.  We want our blog not to be just about words but actions as well.  We would like to put some hands and feet on this thing.  We are tossing around hosting 4 events in 2012 to serve others TOGETHER!  We are excited about coming together to meet the needs of others.  We hope to be a blessing to others.  We also are looking forward to spending time with you.  We want to meet you and get to know you and serve together with you.

Here are the four events we are tossing around.

1. In January we are having a Lia Sophia jewelry party and all the proceeds will go to a local missionary.  She is working at the University of Colorado with The Navigators.  She is helping instill leadership, wisdom, integrity and a strong Biblical foundation into the next generations of leaders in America.  She is also taking a group of students to serve in Haiti over spring break.  She has found herself $4200 dollars short and if the money isn’t raised by February 20th, she will be asked to step off campus until she is fully funded.  We are friends with a Lia Sophia advisor who offered to give all the proceeds to our missionary friend.  So, Grace FULL Home friends, if you would like to help support our friend serving our young colligeate Americans, we would love for you to join us at the party.  There is a GREAT sale going on right now for Lia Sophia.  Buy one item full price and you get 2 items at half price.  (The more expensive items can be the items at half price!)  You can get all your wedding, mother’s day, birthday presents and shower gifts taken care of for the year!  AND all the proceeds go to a great cause!  We would love for you to join us for the party!  It is on Saturday, January 28.  Because this is such a public forum please email us at gracefullhome@yahoo.com for more details and your RSVP!

Here is how you can help out and SHOP ONLINE!

  • go to www.liasophia.com/lainieharris 
  • go to “browse our jewelry”
  • on the next screen, you can plug in my name:  Jennifer Severn 
  • THEN all the profits will still go to help Jenny!  Awesome!!!

 

2.  We would like to invite you to join us in the spring to serve a meal at the Ronald McDonald House.  Amy and I have done this before with our famlies and were so blessed by the experience.  We met some wonderful people and they were gratful for a warm meal during a tough time for their family.  Details to come.

3.  We would like to have a back to school supply drive in July or August.  This will help local schools provide supplies for low income students.  Both Amy and I have done this with our kids and it’s a BLAST for all!

 

4.  In December we would like to meet up with you all at the Operation Christmas Child warehouse and help get the boxes ready for delivery.  Amy and her daughters do this every year and it is a great opportunity to serve and it is a fun time to hang out.

We are still in the early stages of working the details out, but we would love to serve along side you all.

Give Back: Pumpkin Carving

Amy

I found a SIMPLE and CREATIVE way to give to charity this Halloween!  In the October issue of Better Homes and Gardens (one of my favorite magazines) they are offering a free download of customized pumpkin carving stencils that represent five great charities: The Humane Society, Big Brothers and Big Sisters, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, Rebuilding Together, and  March of Dimes.  For every stencil downloaded, BHG will donate $2.00 up to $5000.00 per charity!

What a great way to share with kids the spirit of giving on this “spirited” holiday (and to educate them on the mission of these 5 charities).  Our family will be picking some of these designs for our pumpkins this year:

Just click on this link: http://www.bhg.com/bhg/file.jsp?item=/marketing/registration/Charity_Pumpkin_Stencils/bhg_splash_charitypumpkinstencils&temp=yes

Please send us pictures if you decide to carve any of these designs, we’d love to see them.

 

Give Back : If You See The Need; Meet The Need.

Written By Jen

My husband and I just started volunteering in the children’s ministry at our church.  One of the five main principles that they shared at the training was a basic life concept:

If YOU SEE the NEED, MEET the NEED.

Don’t tell someone else about it.  Don’t ignore it.  Don’t pretend you don’t see it.  Don’t expect or ask someone else to fix it.  If you see the need, meet the need.  If you smell a dirty diaper or you see trash on the street; if the dishes are piling up or there is a person carrying a heavy load; don’t wait for someone else to help them out.  If you see the need meet the need.  Of course there are exceptions, but living by this principle may just change your life and the life of those around you.  Jesus challenges us to put the interests of others before our own.  It’s actually pretty radical when opposed to entitlement.

This is a good life lesson it applies to ALL of life.  It actually is good for your friendships, your marriage; it’s a good lesson for your kids.  It’s basic and it’s true.  Try it.  I am. You would be surprised who it inspires.


“You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the fles; ratherserve one another humbly in love.  For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Galatians 5:13-14

“Calling them to Himself, Jesus said to them, “You know that those who are recognized as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them; and their great men exercise authority over them. But it is not this way among you, but whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant; and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Mark 10:42-45 NASB

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” Luke 19:10 NIV

Do everything readily and cheerfullyno bickering, no second-guessing allowedGo out into the world uncorrupteda breath of fresh air in this squalid and polluted society. Provide people with a glimpse of good living and of the living God.” Philippians 2:14-15 Message

“Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?” Matthew 16:24-26 Message

“Jesus got them together to settle things down. “You’ve observed how godless rulers throw their weight around,” he said, “and when people get a little power how quickly it goes to their headsIt’s not going to be that way with you. Whoever wants to be great must become a servant. Whoever wants to be first among you must be your slaveThat is what the Son of Man has doneHe came to serve, not to be served—and then to give away his life in exchange for many who are held hostage.” Mark 10:42-45 Message

I add all the emphasis in these verses.

Give Back: Gracefullhome

Written By Amy

 Maybe you are reading this curled on a chair with a steaming cup of coffee, or on your iPhone, or at your desk in the evening when you have some down time, but wherever you are at the moment, hello!

Jen and I try to hit a variety of topics in our writing, as you may have noticed by our post titles (you can look at the top of our blog under “To Do” and “To Think” to see how all of our posts are categorized for easy reference).  Today, my topic is “Give Back.”  In the past when addressing this topic, we have shared ideas on how you can give back in your world, such as helping to pack Operation Christmas Child boxes, donating college t-shirts to low-income elementary-age kids to inspire and encourage their futures, serving at the Ronald McDonald house, and donating to the E4 Project, a ministry to the poor in Africa.  We want to share with you all the good that is going on around us and give you an easy way to link arms with these ministries and organizations.

Today, I am going to share another way to give back.   It is by helping Jen and I share Gracefullhome with others.  You see, the heart of this blog is to encourage others in their daily walk through life and with God.  The time and thought we put into our writing is simply because we feel like God has asked us to do this.  There are many women who just simply need encouragement day-to-day.  They need to know that there are others out there who are feeling the same way they do.  That is why Jen and I try to be real as to our struggles and challenges and joys.  Here is some of the feedback we’ve received over the last year:

Thank you for the time and prayer you put into this daily missive. I am growing through it.”

“I just wanted to say thank you for doing this blog.  Just getting your posts gives me one way of me being able to say connected and is uplifting and I can relate to both of you on so many things.”

“I love reading what you are writing!! It is wonderful.  It is real. And it is practical.  I am glad you guys are doing this!!  I pray that it blesses the hearts of many women!”

“I really love your blog.  I have never followed blogs before this one , so it is enjoyable.  Thank you to you and Jen for doing this.  Seems just real and honest.  I am hoping that it helps me move closer to God–the desire I have now–just seems so hard with every day life.”

“Just wanted to let you know that this morning at my Tuesday morning women’s bible study, my friend told me what an amazing impact your website has had on her life since she began to follow the blog.  She has 5 kids, works, and is on the women’s council with me for the ministry–needless to say, she barely has time to BREATHE!  Anyhow, she told me that she barely has time to do anything but DAILY she makes time to read your updates and blogs and they have provided so much encouragement to her.  The literally told me that it has changed her life and she is soooo grateful.  The encouragement from your blog has helped her at a crucial time in her life!”

We humbly feel like God is working here.  Between Facebook, our email subscribers, and our Google readers, we have about 140 men and women who follow our blog in one way or another.  We would love to increase that number for no other reason than just to allow God to work in more lives! So, I humbly ask if you would consider giving back to Gracefullhome by sending our link www.gracefullhome.net to 5 people on your email list…Friends, neighbors, or family who you think would want to be a part of this community.  We have no ulterior motives! (Someday we would like to earn some income from our advertising, but we learned we need at least 750 followers for that so we are not even thinking of that at this time!!).  We believe we have a great community here and would love to invite more to be a part of it.  We promise to continue to be honest and real, prayerfully write our posts, and provide great resources such as books, activities, serving opportunities, and great recipies!

So, that’s the “give back” I am proposing today.  We appreciate your support more that we can say!!  Thank you friends!

 

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