Extending Birthday Wish!

Why not!?

I decided to expand YOUR opportunity to bless Tiny Hands International until the end of this weekend!  On my last post, I shared my wish to bless Tiny Hands with all the profits from every order placed on my Etsy shop ON MY BIRTHDAY!  And guess what!  People came through and placed orders!  But why not?!!  Let's keep it going!  

You have until Sunday, September 28th at 11:59pm (PST) to place your orders!

Ready, GO!

Click HERE to browse the shop and place your orders!

A Birthday Wish: Help Fight Human Trafficking with me!

Human trafficking is real.  
There isn't much that makes my heart break more than the sad and horrific reality that young girls are being sold into modern slavery, beaten, raped, sold as property and forgotten among societies that deem human life worthless.  
I get angry!  A righteous anger that puts me to my knees.  
It's been quite a few years since I first learned about this issue of human trafficking, and since then, every time I come across another article, another blog post, another documentary, another presentation, or even another new opportunity for people like you and me to pour out our resources to raising awareness and fight this issue... my heart races a little faster, my ears perk up, and my spirit awakens to align with the heart of God.  

Almost 3 years ago, I wrote about 2 different agencies that were investing their efforts and resources to fight human trafficking and come alongside the victims of this horrific sin.  I still wear my Sevenly shirts proudly and consciously!  

A few months after I blogged about this issue, I became aware of Tiny Hands International, an INCREDIBLE Christian non-profit agency that loves God and fights human trafficking all over the world.  They are particularly called to orphans, street children, and the victims of the sex-trafficking industry in very poor regions of the world. 

One of their area directors happened to be a fellow "once-youth pastor" from a sister church here, and who happens to use my favorite local coffee shop as his office.  Jon Andrews's passion for this ministry is unlike any I've seen in a long time.  He breathes and bleeds Jesus and EVERY TIME I hear him share about Tiny Hands International and the evil that's at work in the darkest places in the world, I KNOW God smiles at Jon and his ministry.  (On a side note... his precious daughter and my son Joshua are in the same Kindergarten class!)  

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE take a few minutes to watch this video!

This is where I need YOUR help!
September 26th is my 37th birthday!  
I have a WILD goal! 

I want to donate EVERY. SINGLE. PENNY I make from ALL the orders I receive on my Helen's Corner Etsy shop between today and the end of my birthday, September 26th at 11:59pm (PST).  

That's right!
All the profits from ALL the orders I receive on my birthday, will be directly given to Tiny Hands International.  The cool thing about it is that the donation will TRIPLE when I send it by the end of September!  Ahhhh!  I'm SO excited!

My goal is to sell 37 items on my Etsy shop (1 for every year of my life), a reminder that every year on this earth is a blessing from my Creator!  Stock up on birthday gifts, baby shower gifts, or Christmas gifts!  See something you like but need a different size, shirt, or color?  No worries, I'll work with you!

Will you help me fight human trafficking on my 37th birthday?

Click HERE to shop directly on my Etsy shop site.  If you want multiples of the same items, please contact me for custom order information.

Can't wait to report how much we will be able to raise and donate to Tiny Hands International!  Thank you!

Walks & Tea: What my Father taught me about Self-Care

There are many things I could say about my dad today.  12 years without him is a lifetime of moments he didn’t get to witness or experience.  However, today I will choose not to dwell on the reality that he isn’t around anymore.  Sure, it’s not easy, but I rest in the truth that he is in God’s presence… and has been for the last 12 years!  Wow!

My dad carried a heavy and busy schedule.  He was a husband, father, pastor, teacher, mentor, visionary, director… you name it, he was or had carried such title.  He was able to read multiple books at a time, prep and write sermons in multiple languages, travel, take classes, entertain guests, manage finances, and even take an entire family grocery shopping on a weekend.  There are many things I can’t recollect about how our household ran.  And I still have NO CLUE how he could do it all.  But there is ONE THING I specifically remember… 

My dad went for walks… a lot.  Almost daily.  I have vivid memories of dad opening the living room screen glass door and saying it was time for his walk.  I didn’t think anything of it then.  “Dad just likes to walk”, was my thinking.  AND, more often than not, he walked out with a mug at hand.  Tea.  He would take his tea cup/mug with him.  Never understood why.  At one point, I probably thought that he just needed a break from all the reading and studying.  He needed to stretch his legs.  And he liked drinking tea in the afternoon.

That was then… and here is my thinking NOW.  My dad liked tea… Jasmine tea to be exact.  And since I can’t remember whether or not he was a coffee drinker (like I am), I’m assuming tea was his comfort drink.  If you know me, you know that I'm a coffee fan.  I like coffee.  I like the warmth of it.  I like the taste and the smell of it.  I like holding a mug while reading a good book.  It's a comfort drink for me.  AND… going for a walk was his version of Self-Care.  Yup.  I now have a name for what he did.


The same term I heard so many times throughout my college & graduate school career!  The term I use to describe those intentional efforts to care for our souls, to keep our sanity, to be kind to ourselves.  The term I still use when I want to refocus.  To rest.  To take a deep breath.  And most recently… the term I use to make sense of Spiritual Whitespace.  My newly found friend Bonnie Gray describes this concept of Spiritual Whitespace as a “creative way of spending time with God to slow down and feed your soul, to rejuvenate and enjoy soul rest.”  Taking care of ourselves by spending time with God. 

How often am I taking intentional time to breathe?  How often am I allowing my soul to rest?  How intentional am I when it comes to STOPPING the auto-pilot mode of my life? 

So, today… despite 12 long years without my dad on this earth… I celebrate the lesson I learned from the silence of his routine.  His daily walks holding a tea cup will forever represent my need to intentionally find moments in my day to STOP and rest my soul.  Whether he was doing it for physical health or to escape the reality of his busyness and relationship conflicts… he knew how to ‘get out’. 

Oh oh oh… another quick note.  My dad didn’t always go on his walks alone.  Oh no.  He enjoyed taking my brothers along.  And I even remember going with him once or twice (Nope… I wasn’t a fan of walking around the block back then… Oh, how I wish I could go on such walks with him now…).  Self-Care does not need to be something I do in solitude.  It can be done WITH my family or in community.  Self-care is important and needed.

How are you doing with that?  How am I doing with that?  What do you do to take care of your soul?  How do you spend time with God to care for your soul?  Do you have whitespace in your life right now?  Want to learn more about Spiritual Whitespace?  Let me know in the comments below…  would love to chat more about it. 

In the meantime… Dad… thank you for another life lesson…  

Miss you today! 

June 2001