Favorite Things

Small Gifts, Big Change: HopeMongers

Microgiving is one of the the most most exciting new thing I’ve seen in a long time in making a difference in the life of the world’s poor. Not all of you can go on a trip to Uganda like I did a few weeks ago — you can all make a difference, though.

HopeMongers is a new microgiving non-profit started by my super-smart friend Sam Henry. Here’s the idea:

  • Go to HopeMongers.org, and find a project you are passionate about — someplace you want to make a difference.  Find by location (India, Africa, etc) or by project type (Water, Faith in Action, etc)
  • Give $10-$100 — 100% of which goes to the organization doing the work on the ground.
  • Add a blog badge inviting others to join you in the same project.
  • Track the progress of the giving and the way your gift makes a change in the Hopemongers Cooperative.

I invite you to join in the project below.  The kids at Trinity College in Otuboi (actually what we would think of as a high school) were one of the highlights of my trip to Uganda. Their slogan is “Christ is our Hope” but they can’t afford to pay a Biblical Studies teacher.

Do you want some of the future leaders of Uganda to be exposed to the life-changing power of the gospel?  Join me in supporting this project:

(Can’t see the above? Find the project here.)

Uganda or Bust

I write this post sitting a DFW gate d14 waiting for my flight to Amsterdam to take off. It’s the first leg of a 25-hour journey to Entebbe, Uganda.

This is a last mintute trip that all started last Saturday when my good friend Sam sends me this text:

“Want to come with us to Uganda? I need someone to shoot photography/video. I will pay all costs. Please.”

Long story short… By the end of that day I had bought a ticket to Uganda that left a little less than a week later. Crazy huh?

My only hestitation was being here for Holly as we prepare for her surgery. She would hear nothing of it – she insisted I go and may be more excited than me about me going.

In every way this was an answer to prayer, and the deepest desires of my heart. I told Holly a few days before that all I wanted was to get away, I needed to get out of Dallas and out of “cancer world” for a little while before her surgery. Little did I know I would getting quite so far away.

Many of you know I went to Ethiopia last year, and this trip will be much like it. I will spend 8 days on the ground going from one ophan community to another. We will be playing with kids, and profiling the communities in hope that a church in the US will sponsor them through Children’s Hopechest.

It will also be the launch of Sam’s new non-profit, Hopemongers. You can check hopemongers.org for updates and blog posts.

As you may of guessed from Sam’s text, I will be shooting photo and video while there. A friend generously loaned me some professional video gear, so I am hoping for some good stuff.

I’ll be back at 1pm on the 17th, just in time for Holly’s surgery on the 18th.

Please pray that it would be a productive trip that God would use for His glory and that I would come back ready to be be everything Holly needs me to be.

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Life happens

For our budgeting we use an on-line free program called Mint.  We lump all unexpected or hard to predict expenses into a category called “Life Happens.”  We got this email from Mint a few days ago that made us both laugh:

Screenshot - 7_17_2009 , 2_05_43 PM

Yes, we have way blown past our mental and emotional budget for “Life Happening.”  It’s a good thing God’s grace is endless.

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Halloween 2006

Halloween 2006We continued our tradition of trick-or-treating with Andy and April this year. We had a great time raiding their neighborhood for candy. Austin and Grady were old pros, and Abbey figured it out quickly.

All the photos are here one-by-one or as a slideshow.

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Colorado Trip and Travel Deals

DSC 7779 Last weekend I joined my dad and brothers for a birthday gift to ourselves: a quick trip to Colorado Springs. We did the whole trip for less than $250/person including flight, hotel, and car. Well worth it.

People keep asking where we got such a good deal and the answer is Site59. It only does last minute travel packages for this weekend and next weekend. Also, you have to get at least 2 of these 3: a flight, hotel, or car. But, if that fits your requirements, you can get some screamin’ deals.

Here’s a couple other tricks I have:

  • Cheap Rental Cars: Try finding a coupon code on MouseSavers.
  • Quick Flight Checks: Kayak.com, searches all the airline’s websites plus most of the other big travel sites and displays them all together.
  • Cheap Hotel Rooms: Book via priceline, but find out how much to bid on Bidding for Travel.

More photos here.

Jamie