Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Ways to Give Back This Season

Last week I wrote about  being Thankful while our world is going through so much. Today I'm sharing a few different organizations that you can donate to and can give you some ideas for other types of ways to get involved.

1. Operation Christmas Child 
This is a pretty traditional Christmas opportunity, but it is so much fun to do! I love imagining the faces of the little kids when they get all the boxes. How fun would it be to actually go and deliver them?! Maybe that should be a 2016 Goal? You can also volunteer at one of the centers to make sure all the boxes are packed properly. Check out their whole website for videos and stories.

2. Sole Hope
I hear about this one through a podcast recently (although I think it was recorded earlier this year).  This is a company (and family) based in Uganda that helps put shoes on the feet of the community. They also help rid the people of these little annoying bugs called jiggers. The community didn't realize how easy it was to rid their feet of these bugs, but now they do! Here's how you can get involved - have a shoe cutting party! They will send you patterns, and you and your family or group of girlfriends can help cut fabric for the shoes these people will wear. You can even do it while watching your favorite TV shows, or Hallmark Christmas movie marathons :-)

3. City of Refuge (Atlanta)
This is a really cool place in Atlanta that offers so many different services to those in need. Click here to see all the programs they offer at their facilities. I've volunteered with them before and they can always use the help, so if you can't donate money, donate your time. If you're not in Atlanta, look for places similar in your area where you can donate your time.

4. The A21 Campaign
This one is a bit more on the somber side. The A21 Campaign is led by Christine Caine and their purpose is to rescue women from sex trafficking. They are also currently on the front lines of the Refugee Crisis and are offering hope to those who are forced to flee their homeland. There are several ways you can get involved with this organization. I might even start one of their fundraiser campaigns for SGG readers. Would you want to be a part of it? (email >

Here are some other simple things you can do to bring cheer this Christmas.
1. Get a group together and go Christmas Caroling around your city, or to a children's or nursing home.
2. Buy Starbucks (or any drive-through) for the people behind you.
3. Pass out candy-canes to the people in the drive through or those working the registers at your favorite grocery/department stores (My mom does this and they love it!) Customers can get a bit rude this time of year, so its fun to make them smile.
4. Babysit for couples you know to give them time to Christmas shop without the kids.

I hope you'll consider one of these organizations this Christmas, or some that are closer to your heart and home.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Grace Tip #6: Being Thankful

Is anyone else amazed at how fast this year has gone? Maybe it was that last year had so many changes + times of waiting that it seemed slower. But I just can't believe its almost 2016.  Next week, I'll be sharing some of my favorite Thanksgiving traditions + recipes! But this week I want to talk about Thankfulness + what's going on in our world. My community group leader reminded us last night that many times we struggle answering "what are you thankful for this year?" because we don't often think about what we are actually thankful for. Being thankful has become a chore and not a natural habit. 

We are in the middle of the thanksgiving season, heading hard + fast towards Christmas, a season often overshadowed by "gimme, gimme, gimme." So how do we handle these two seasons together? How do we sit in our warm homes + make lots of yummy food, making Christmas lists, while there is so much heartache going on in the world? I don't know the best answer, but I'll be posting a blog full of companies and organizations that center on helping those less fortunate. 

I'm not sitting here telling you not to have a wonderful Thanksgiving meal or to not create a Christmas wish list, but to just encourage you to be more aware this season of the goodness you already have + appreciate the time you have with friends + family. 

There are so many ways to give back during this time of the year + I'm excited to share those with you next week! 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Glamping Baby Shower

I first need to apologize for the formatting - I'm typing this on my iPad due to horrible wifi. So right now this will be a lot of photos!! 

I can't believe my nephew is almost one! Where has time gone? Originally we thought he was going to be a girl & my ideas for a shower ran wild. But then we found out he was actually a he so I had to change plans....a little. My sister is super outdoorsy and active + I love the idea of glamping which gave me this idea! For food my momma suggested fondue since it has the feel of "roasting" without needing a fire - my mom has the best ideas!! She also helped make my doodles a reality as far as decorations & then dad did all the manual labor #familyteamwork 



Mom bought these great burlap table cloths! 

Thanks Dad for setting this up!

I absolutely loved how this turned out!! Several cousins came to help + I couldn't have done it without them - thanks Courtney, Mel, + Palmer!!

This Saturday my sister is throwing Lyle a camping party + it's going to be so cute! Haha no more glamping for us!