Happy birthday to me! (A few hours early.)  This year for my birthday post, I’m being greedy and ASKING for a special gift from all of you readers.  🙂  I’m nothing if not bossy.  However, it won’t cost you a penny, I promise. Over the last year or so, I’ve found myself honing in on two passions in my life.  One was formed through my own trials and experiences, and the other I truly believe God placed on my heart, and I’m still not sure why, but it’s burnin’ me up.

Birthday request #1: love on some adoptive mamas

Will you tell someone about the Called to Love retreat?  Right now!  Think of an adoptive or foster mom you know and send her this link: http://www.calledtoloveministry.org.    This new retreat is so very special to me, a complete labor of love.  I’ve been blown away with how God has lined up amazing and gifted people, willing to pour into adoptive and foster moms this November.   Parenting an adopted child has been more challenging than I had anticipated, and it’s a UNIQUE challenge.  Just like parenting in general, nothing is balm for a weary soul like looking into the eyes of a fellow sojourner who says, “I know exactly what you’re going through.  I’ve been there. It’s going to be OK.” The weekend is coming together beautifully, and we still have room for about 70 more mamas.  Your gift to me would be to spread the word!  I know right now this will be one of the main highlights of my 36th year on this earth.

Birthday request #2: help rescue a child from sexual slavery

This one is just for f@cebook users.  I’m asking you to “like” two pages:  Encompass Nutrients and Destiny Rescue.    Here are the links:

Encompass Nutrients is a lovely start-up company which has promised to give $1 to Destiny Rescue for every “like” they receive before August 9th.  (A friend of mine is an employee.)  Destiny Rescue is a non-profit which exists to rescue children out of sexual slavery and restore and rehabilitate them to a new life. A majority of their work is in Thailand, our son’s homeland. It costs an estimated $1,500 to rescue and rehabilitate one girl from sexual slavery, and they need several hundred more to meet that goal.  For my birthday gift, would you click and like each of these companies? Social media CAN be used for good!  If you are really wanting to pour on the love, you could SHARE about it and get others to add $1 to the cause!  My heart has been broken for the vulnerable boys and girls whose innocence has been cruelly taken from them, and this is a small step towards hope.

So there it is.  I know it’s not my normal, long-winded soliloquy on life and age, but this is what is on my heart and mind as I add another candle to my cake.  Thank you, friends and family, for enriching my life in countless ways!  (Even if you aren’t able to grant my birthday wish, I still love you.)