1. The While We're Waiting ministry was the beneficiary of a wonderful fund raiser held in Fort Smith, Arkansas, this past weekend. What an honor it was to participate in Lei Lei's 5K Run and Memory Walk, held annually in memory of Leightyn Holmes, a precious 5-year-old girl who died of brain cancer in August of 2010. Her parents, Landen and Missy, were among the brave souls who attended our very first retreat for bereaved parents. Thanks to the generosity of the Holmes family, some great sponsors, and a very enthusiastic crowd of runners and walkers, the While We're Waiting ministry received a little over $10,000! As a ministry that relies solely on donations, I can't tell you how much that gift meant to us!
2. The day after the 5K, we had the privilege of speaking at Immanuel Baptist Church in El Dorado. That was really a special opportunity for us, because that was our home church for five years. That's the church where our girls spent their mid-childhood years, and where they were both saved and baptized. We shared ten things that God has been teaching us over the past five years (trimmed down a bit from my 14 Things I Wish I'd Known Five Years Ago post), and were able to talk about the While We're Waiting ministry. We love opportunities like this and are always happy to share!
3. Prior to our trip to south Arkansas, we were contacted by a reporter for the El Dorado News-Times who wanted to write a story about While We're Waiting. I had a really nice visit with her on the phone, and we were very pleased when we read the article. Imagine our surprise when friends around Arkansas began contacting us and telling us they had read the article in their hometown newspapers! Then my sister-in-law texted me a link to the article ... in a Belleville, Illinois, newspaper! Apparently, the article had been picked up by the AP, and it appeared in newspapers around the country ... in Alaska, California, North Carolina, Missouri, etc.! We were blown away ... What a great way to get the word out about While We're Waiting! Want to read the article? Click here to read it in the Kansas City Star.
4. While We're Waiting is going to be hosting its first Bereaved Parents Weekend "on the road." We are bringing our retreat to Carriere, Mississippi. For more information, click the "While We're Waiting Weekend Retreat for Bereaved Parents" tab above. We are so excited about this opportunity, and would love to have more opportunities to take this ministry on the road. If you would like to talk to us about bringing a Parents' Weekend, a Dads' Weekend, or a Moms' Mini-Retreat to your area, click on the "Contact Me" tab above.
So there's a lot of exciting stuff going on with While We're Waiting right now.
There's also a lot of exciting stuff happening on the home front!
1. As of today, Bethany has completed her first year of college! She took her last final this morning, packed up her dorm room and headed home. She has studied so hard and done so well this year ... I'm extremely proud of her!
2. And, as of today, she is 17 days away from becoming Mrs. Bird! Wait ... What? 17 DAYS!?!? Oh my goodness ... I better get off this computer and get busy, lol!
Seriously, I am going to get off the computer for awhile. I'm planning to take a hiatus from the blog for the rest of the month, so I can be fully present with my girl as she spends her last couple of weeks at home. I don't want to miss a moment! I'll be back when I'm a mother-in-law, and I'm sure I'll have lots to share. Thank you all who take the time to read my posts. You all are an encouragement to me!