We are a group of parents seeking to put to use our creative energies, our giving spirits, and our loving hearts. We are families who want to do more.

While our children play, we show them how to make their world a better place.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Ni Hao!!

We had a wonderful time at our PlayGroup this month. We collected items for Cathy and Sarah to take on their upcoming mission trip to New Day Foster Home in China. Cathy and Sarah taught us a lot of fun stuff about China and we were all very excited to help them prepare for their trip. Don't forget to follow their blog as their trip comes closer and we can "watch" them in China.

We started the PlayGroup with some academics. Cathy showed us where China was on a globe and we used our fingers to see how far away it is from the US. We also used our fingers to point out all the different places we come from (US, China, Ethiopia, Russia). We looked at pictures of the Great Wall - forever to be known as the "Great Big Wall of China."
Sarah has been taking Chinese lessons for her upcoming trip and she taught us how to say a few words. Then she and her brother Michael taught us a greeting song which we sang and danced together.
Michael showed us how to use chopsticks (even the adults paid attention for this!) and we had fun trying to pick up our marshmallows with the chopsticks.
Daniel is concentrating so hard to get that marshmallow.
Lydia was also practicing hard.
Mari developed a different approach.
Then we played a game with Chinese spoons and balls.
Lydia was very careful about carrying her ball on her spoon.
Then we decorated Chinese lanterns to take home with us.

At last it was snack time - Chinese donuts, chow mein haystacks, and fruit. YUM!
I know that Cathy and Sarah are so excited about their trip. I'm so glad they let us share in some of their joy.
Items we collected for the New Day Foster Home.
We had SO much fun!!!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Hooray for New Day!!

This may be the most exciting PlayGroup yet! We are so excited to announce that one two of our own PlayGroup members are……..

Are you ready?……..


Did you just get excited shivers, too?

It’s true! Lydia’s mom Cathy and her older sister Sarah are going to work in the New Day Foster Home in China in June! Lydia is adopted from China and her family is very passionate about her home country; they have been sponsoring children in New Day since before Lydia came home! And for those of you that remember Operation Giggles (our PlayGroup from October), we also sponsored Christmas gifts for 2 little boys at New Day. We are so excited that Cathy and Sarah are getting the opportunity to go work with the fabulous people there.

Of course, we want to show our support and send these two PlayGroupers to China with more than they can carry! Our next PlayGroup will be a Chinese extravaganza! Below you will find details of when, where, and what is needed. I’m providing the whole list of suggested stuff - anything is welcome although we would like to focus on medical stuff and the needed crib sheets as the preschool stuff is being collected by Lydia’s school. But of course, there is no limit on that stuff - so go with your heart on what you would like to give.

When: Saturday, May 8th 10am-12pm
Where: Tabernacle Presbyterian Church, Waynesboro (behind Lowes)
Chinese snacks, Chinese crafts, Chinese music

Items needed:

Medical Supplies
Singulair 4mg
Azmacort inhalers
Cetaphil Moisturizing Cream
Non-latex powder-free gloves sizes small and medium
Paper tape
Usana Children's Multivitamin
Tussin CF
Children's Fluoride Rinse
medicine cups
Alcohol wipes
Benadryl Anti-Itch Cream
Atrovent nebulizers
Liquid Senokot
Kuric Cream (Ketoconazole 2% Cream)
Children's Fiber
Hand Sanitizer
Cefaclor Suspension
Zithromax Suspension
Aquaplast Splinting Material
3cc Syringes
Pulmicort Nebulizers
Infant Liquid Vitamins with Iron
Hydrocortisone Cream
Neonatal nipples
Nuk Brush
Rubbing Alcohol

When donating medicine, please check the expiration date to ensure we have at least one year before it expires.

Preschool Supplies
DVDS featuring children's songs and finger-plays
Educational DVDs about people or jobs
Construction paper
Double stick tape
Flannelgraf stories
Puzzles or games for 2-3 year olds, especially those that help develop motor and other skills
Simple story books with big pictures that are good at catching our little ones’ attention!
We do not need crayolas. We have plenty right now, and we’ve even passed them out to many other orphanages and projects!
Bulletin Board Sets
Incubator & egg turner

General Supplies:
Solid Color Crib Sheets
Purple - 12 sets
Blue - 12 sets
Yellow - 6 sets
Green - 6 sets
Pink - 6 sets
Baby Food

We hope you can join us! For questions, just click on the "contact us" link on the sidebar, leave a comment, or drop us a line on FB.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

March PlayGroup - Footloose and Fancy Free

Our March PlayGroup was an awesome success today! We collected new and gently used shoes for Soles4Souls. We had a great turnout on a miserable, rainy day but it didn't bother us! The kids raced to match up all the shoes with their mates so we could bundle them for donation. Then we moved onto our craft project for this month.

We drilled some holes in the soles of old shoes and then filled them with dirt and planted flowers in them. A great way to recycle some cute shoes. Rachel even planned to line Daniel's up on her porch steps to look like the shoes sitting there had sprouted flowers - how much fun will that be when they bloom?

We may be girly girls (except Daniel of course - don't let his beads fool you!) but dirt doesn't scare us!
Mari and Mommy working very hard together.
Lydia and L posing with their newly planted shoes.
Daniel and his shoe planter.
Madi and her flowering shoe.
Mari and Madi showing off their planters.
The whole gang - aren't they adorable? And my, how they've all grown up since last March!
We also passed out fliers and stickers for Toms Shoes "One Day Without Shoes" - will you go barefoot with us on April 8th? Visit the website to print out your own fliers and stickers and join an amazing movement to bring awareness to how much one pair of shoes can make a difference in someone's life - it can be the difference between having a job and being unemployed, the difference between being able to go to school or staying at home being uneducated, the difference between life in death in areas that are overwhelmed by simple illnesses/infections that can find their way in through bare, battered feet.
Join us and shoe off your toes!

Hopefully, there are 51 people in the world that will get a whole new set of opportunities opened to them thanks to this pile of shoes!
Working out the details of the next PlayGroup - don't have all the details yet but it will be a Moo-ving experience. Stay tuned for "Milk Money."

Friday, February 26, 2010

March PlayGroup - Footloose and Fancy Free!!

It's time for another PlayGroup. Rachel found an awesome (and easy!) cause to support this month. It's called Soles4Souls.

This organization accepts new and gently worn shoes to distribute worldwide to people in need of footwear.

  • The definition of gently worn: a shoe that you would wear again, soles solid, shoes clean, laces (if applicable) included.
  • All shoe sizes, styles accepted.
  • You can specify what area you would like the shoes to go to.
  • You can even send shoes that do not have mates! Apparently they hope that these shoes will find their sole-mate (sorry, couldn't resist!) but in my mind, I think of all the people I met in Ethiopia that only needed one shoe.

PlayGroup Details

  • When: Saturday, March 13 10:00am-12:00pm

  • Where: Jill's House (leave me a comment or FB me for directions)

  • What to bring: Clean out your closets and bring new or gently worn shoes. Also bring an old shoe or two for our activity. $1-2 to help with shipping, if possible.

  • Activity: Shoe planters!

  • Snacks: Still in need of "shoe" snacks - be creative and bring us some toe-food

We will also be giving you info on another shoe-related cause that will help raise awareness. We will have the brochures/stickers for Tom's Shoes "One Day Without Shoes" which is scheduled for April 8th.

Hope to see all you there!!

Friday, February 12, 2010

January PlayGroup - Good Night!

Pajama Party!!

Our cause was the Pajama Project (click to see post about our project).We donated 24 sets of Pjs and 34 new books! Special thanks to those who couldn’t make it but still contributed to our cause, both through donations and money for shipping.

Everyone was a good sport and wore their PJs!!
We ate lots of “bedtime” snacks - cookies and pop tarts!

Matching PJs were not a requirement but very cute!

We painted pillowcases as our craft project - so much fun to get messy in our PJs (or out of them, as some chose to do!).

Madison decided on a pink pillowcase.
Daniel went to work on his blue one.
Mari also picked blue and got messy with hers.

Yes, we do have meltdowns at PlayGroup, this one was contagious.

Then we curled up on pillows and blankets and read stories about bedtime!
Llama Llama Red Pajama and Five Little Monkeys, among others.

Even the adults enjoyed the theme to the party!
Our stack of books to send off!

Lots of warm, snuggly PJs!

Stay tuned for upcoming PlayGroups...we have lots of good ideas, just need to pick one and pick a date.
Are you ready to play with us?
Please scroll down to the next post to see feedback from our November Playgroup!

Ronald McDonald House Update

We received a very pleasant card from the Ronald McDonald House in appreciation of our donations. Very nice to get some feedback for our efforts.
Click on the card to read.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009


One of the things I looked forward to the most before becoming a parent was passing on my love of reading to my child. I dreamed of snuggling on the couch, in the rocking chair, or in a little tiny bed, dressed in warm comfy PJs, reading book after book after book. It is one of the few glorious dreams of parenthood that have not been overwhelmed by the reality of daily parenting stresses. Mari and I read every night before bed, at least 3-4 books – she dressed in her one-piece fleece sleeper, me in old lounge pants and an oversize t-shirt.

We live for those moments; quiet, safe, emotionally-secure, warm, comfortable, HAPPY.

What would happen if your child didn’t have that security? What if your child did not have pajamas, all their own? What if they had no one to read to them? Or if they didn’t even have a book all their own?

It happens every night, all over the world. In foreign countries. In the United States. In your state. In your neighborhood!

Let’s help make someone’s bedtime dreams a reality!
Join us for a big middle-of-the-day PAJAMA PARTY!!!


Please join us for Sprout’s Great Tuck In!
Wear your PAJAMAS (parents too, if you want…I will be!)
  • When: Saturday, January 23
  • Time: 10:00am-12:00pm
  • Where: Jill’s House
  • Bring: New pajamas and/or new books
    $1-2 to help with shipping (optional)

    We will be reading bedtime stories, eating bedtime snacks, and doing night-time crafts.