Posts Tagged ‘bags for zaza’

Adoption FUNds….

May 17, 2011

Many people have asked us how we raised our adoption funds.  We smile a knowing smile… because WE didn’t raise the money, God did.  He funds what He favors!  Adoption is expensive… domestic AND international.  Personally, I don’t think it should be expensive, but that’s another story for another day.  We didn’t have nearly enough cash to adopt from Colombia, but we had some “seed money” that we planted and waited for God to harvest. Our dream of adoption came from the Lord so we relied on Him to show us where the adoption money was hiding.  It was a huge step of faith! Huger than any we’d taken previously!

When our adoption process began, we had faith that we would be one of the QUICK families…. not so.  It took us 10 months to get our dossier together (we had to work with two Canadian provinces and five American states!) and then we waited three months until we were approved.  THEN a 34 month wait for our referral. From the referral to us kissing our girl’s soft cheeks was eight days.  Eight days of FLURRY, scurry and hurry!

The 34 month wait was when we put our noses to the grindstone and searched hard for adoption funds.  I applied for 10-12 grants, and we received only one from Show Hope (MaryBeth and Steven Curtis Chapman) right at the beginning of the journey.  It was the sweet priming for the fundraising pump that we needed!  Thank you, MBC and SCC!

We also sent a letter to friends and family far and near telling them of our expanding family and asking if they felt the Lord nudging them to help bring a child home.  The monies from that one pink letter came in over four years.  It brought me to tears time and time again. Faithful friends, doing their part!  Thank you, if you were one of those loving people.

My sister-in-law, Jennie, came up with this fabulous idea to sew purses and carrier bags from recycled and donated fabric.  She nick-named our daughter Zaza, and Bags for Zaza was birthed!  The sewing escapades went on for over a year with six or seven contributing seamstresses (with three solid contenders).  She auctioned them online and it went over brilliantly…. 10 times more brilliantly than Jennie originally hoped for!  Thank you, Jennie!

While searching other adoption blogs and fundraising sites, I learned about having a Media Drive.  Great idea!  Ask all your family, friends and enemies to donate unused, dust-collecting media….. I gathered books, CDs, DVDs, videos, games, collector cards, plus more.  The valuable ones I was able to sell on eBay and the less valuable ones I sold at a local used book store.  This really encouraged me as friends far and wide donated boxes and boxes of stuff!  It made me feel great that there was a way everyone could contribute to helping an orphan…. it wasn’t just people with extra cash.  Everyone.

I also looked around our house and decided we didn’t need all this stuff that had accumulated over the last 20-something years.  I started selling everything: furniture, clothing, sports equipment, household trinkets, silk trees, books, lamps, you name it.  I sold most of these items on Craigslist.com.  There is one in your area!

Our neighborhood group decided to have a “Large Item” garage sale for us…. held at our house.  More than 20 families donated large items for this day and it was a great success. Thank you, neighborhood groupies!

Right when I needed another idea, a flyer was squeezed into our front door crack telling about a children’s clothing consignment sale.  I sent the word out for friends to donate kid’s clothing.  I gathered, ironed, tagged, hung and delivered over 200 items!

Most unique of all: Matt’s Meals with a Mission.  A high school grad in chef training (friend of daughter’s) set up MMM to raise money for different causes.  So, our adoption was one of the causes he supported by cooking meals for different families for special occassions.  We were so amazed by his giving heart, generosity and cooking! Thank you, Matthew!

The day before we flew to Colombia we received a phone call from a businessman we are acquainted with.  He asked how much we still needed and transfered the funds into our account that day.  It still brings me to tears, knowing that God had people lined up to take care of the needed funds.  We did our part and others did their part, as a body of believers and unbelievers alike, God used MANY people to bring our girl home. The blessing is spread far and wide.  Be encouraged if you are fundraising!  Be creative!  God funds what He favors!  Here’s our breakdown for you:

  • Our Savings – 19%
  • Show Hope – 7%
  • Letter to Family & Friends – 23%
  • Bags for Zaza – 16%
  • Media Drive, Garage Sale, Craigslist, Consignment, MMM – 8%
  • Last minute Donation – 27%
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It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s a Bag for Zaza!

August 17, 2009

[Mom's+brown+turq+bag+004.JPG]

Yes, sewing has been slow lately, but there is a hum-dinger of a bag up for auction at www.BagsForZaza.blogspot.com, thanks to my mother and her wonder machine.  Go look at the fancy-shmancy stitching on this bag.  She was showing off, fo sho!  Silk and velvet fuzzy dots, to boot!  Thanks Mom, and Jennie!

Other exciting adoption fundraising news:  We started a media drive and have made over $250 so far!  whoooo hoooooo.  Friends donated videos, CDs, DVDs, books, and video games that we have been selling at a 2nd hand store and on ebay.  (I’ve been highly amused at the beer and enima boxes that the media arrived in!)  Here’s a link to 6 VHS VeggieTale videos:  http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=320412671256&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT  (No, I still can’t get the link thing working….)  Then click on ‘see other items’ to view our 19 current auctions!  Something for everyone…. and something very special for that tribulation-loving person.  Thanks friends!

AND, if having books and videos stacked all over my family room is not exciting enough, a friend of Larisa’s is doing his version of Take Home Chef and donating 75% to bringing Zaza home!  M3: Matt’s Meals on a Mission.  Matt has been in drama with Larisa for quite a few years and is in his senior year.  He is taking culinary courses at a Scottsdale college.  So if you live in the Phoenix area and eat food, check out his blog and have him over to cook and clean up!  http://mattanvik.blogspot.com/  He’s also very entertaining.  Thanks Matt!

Jennie Lynne makes her appearance!

July 15, 2009

Dolly 009

This is Jennie Lynne.  She is a Doll for Zaza…. meaning: she’s for sale on the Bags for Zaza site, but she’s not a bag.  Something new.  Something different.  The perfect Christmas gift for the little lady in your life.  Initially I made her for our Zaza, but then I decided to make Zaza’s with darker skin, brown eyes and black hair.  So this fair Scandinavian beauty is up for auction to help bring Zaza home.  There are many more pictures that you can zoom in on at www.BagsForZaza.blogspot.com.

Please share the news and help bring Zaza home!

Adoption News Today!

July 7, 2009

www.ZazasMama.wordpress.com

Three Bags Up at BFZ!

July 7, 2009

Yes, come one, come all.  There are three bags up for auction at Bags For Zaza this week.  We’ve been on summer holidays for a bit, but we’re back up and running, well, sewing.  There is something for everyone this week!  All the proceeds of this eco-friendly fundraiser go toward the adoption of our little Zaza from Colombia.  We have been impatiently waiting for her for over 2 1/2 years now, but with each day that passes, we’re one day closer to hugging and kissing her.

Without further ado, may I present THE BAGS:

#1 is a saucy little lavender number for a little girl or a lady who likes to pretend she’s a little girl.

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#2 is a more sophisticated carrier bag that is fashioned after a “birding bag” with lots of pockets and a handy shoulder strap.

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#3 is a handbag in the stylish colors of black & white with a splash of lime green thrown in there too.

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So, if you please, go have a look at WAY more photos of each bag, make a bid or two, and PLEASE tell a few folks about our cause.  We are nearing the end of our wait… the thus our sewing time too, unfortunately. 

www.BagsForZaza.blogspot.com.  THANKS SO MUCH!

Anne of Avonlea

June 29, 2009

Anne of Avonlea 007

We name all of the Bags for Zaza after books, and this is one of my favorite bags, so I picked one of my favorite books, Anne of Avonlea.  This chic little purse has an extra long strap to sling over your shoulder.  It is made of vintage scraps of table cloths, quilts, a beadspread and Calvin Klein jeans.  I know there is someone out there that this little shabby gem was made especially for.  It will be up for auction this week with all the proceeds going toward bringing home our little girl from Colombia.  You can see many more pictures (and click for zoomed-in shots) on the BFZ site:  www.BagsForZaza.blogspot.com.  Please share this with your friends and help spread the word!

I’m Back in the BFZ Groove

June 28, 2009

I’ve envisioned a shabby chic denim and pink floral Bag for Zaza for many months.  I made the flap tonight.  So cute… if you like shabby chic and denim…. with cutesy heart buttons and yellow chenille rick-rack.  I also have a little girls size 2 denim skirt to make into a little princess’ bag for her treasures.  AND Darla, my friend who wants a denim bag, came over and picked out all the coordinating fabric for her bag…. last November, maybe December.  Anyway, I don’t have a blinkin’ thing to do these days, so I’m on a roll, baby.  AND I’m playing my “Learn Spanish in Your Car” CDs while I’m sewing.  Oh, I feel so productive even typing that….. now to remember the words in el español.

Tahoe 08 112

I didn’t comment much on our recent trip to Lake Tahoe, but there were, as per usual, entertaining stories that emerged.  My personal favorite came from garage saling, which we have continued the Saturday morning Tahoe tradition again this year.  Last year we came home to PHOENIX with such useful items as a snowboard, an orange butterfly quilt, a bee-bee gun, a $2 prom dress, a Beetles black wig, a purse shaped like a Chinese take-out box, butterfly sheets and a 1920 Singer sewing machine (minus the most important part to make it work).  I rolled my eyes as most of those purchases were made.  THIS year there was a higher level of eye rolling….. oh, Rick should be grounded from garage saling.  We came home with two pair of snowboarding boots (Rick and Larisa), an entry rug, a pink oriental little shirt (BFZ!), a green coat (Larisa), Vans tennis shoes, and Rick hit the jackpot:  a garage sale run by a sweet little widow who was selling her deceased husband’s clothing… ALL Rick’s sizes.  He got a really nice NEW pair of brown leather shoes.  No eye rolling there.  I kept pointing out other things to Rick like red plaid house slippers and white church shoes… with a matching belt.  He was satisfied with the brown shoes.

Anyway, Rick wore the shoes to church this morning and being the loving wife that I am, I pointed them out to one of his friends.  Of course I said they were a dead man’s shoes.  How could I pass that one up?

Back to the sewing machine y mis lecciones españolas. ¡Dios me ayuda!  (God, Help me!)

One-of-a-Kind Handmade Purse!

June 23, 2009

Mia's Story Bag 001

This bag is called Mia’s Story after a beautifully illustrated tale of a little girl who lives in a South American village.  All of the Bags for Zaza are hand made of  up-cycled fabrics that have been donated for the cause.  What’s the cause?  The adoption of our little South American princess. 

The straps on the bag have bits and pieces of a remnant for a Grandmother’s Flower Garden quilt that was pieced by my great grandmother and her sisters.

mia's story 002

Inside the bag is a little Asian surprise… two little men embroidered for your viewing pleasure.  They were once the front of a little Oriental shirt and the red frog closure is still there too!  There are more photos on the Bags for Zaza page.

mia's story 003

To bid on a bag, please go to  www.BagsForZaza.blogspot.com  and help bring an orphan home!  Thanks for looking and for telling others!

Editors are my Heroes

June 22, 2009

editing 002

Today, bright and early on this Monday morning, I received my edited manuscript for Laughing in the Midst of Marriage.  I took one glance through the pages and had a flash back to college writing assignments.  Let’s just say my editor worked for every penny they earned on this project.  The red on the page is prolific. 

Once at TWU an essay was handed back to me with MORE red than black writing on it.  Good grief!  Written in big red letters across the top it said, “When in Canada, Write as a Canadian!”  I didn’t realize there was a difference.

Today, in America, I’m not sure who I’m writing like???  Maybe my editor is Canadian?  I’m not sure.  Anyway, I have pages and pages to go through of black and RED typing.  I’m so thankful for someone who is trained to fix other people’s work.  It makes me look and sound good. :o)  The email said something to the efffect of, “Let us know if you accept the editor’s corrections.”  WHAT?  Like I know anything about correct grammar and syntax!  I just love to spew forth on the page.  If they said it’s right, they’re probably right and who am I to say otherwise???

So far my day timer has my week all lined up for me:  B-day lunch with Cheryl, dentist, dog shots, adoption conference call, movies, sewing a Bag for Zaza and lots of reading black and red pages.  Enjoy your start of a new week.

It’s Quiet in Here

June 19, 2009

It’s almost too quiet.  The mother in me keeps thinking, The kids are surely up to no good with all this lack of noise.  But no.  There are no children at home for the moment.  Larisa is on her way home from camp today.  The boys are across the street playing with their cousins.  They’re on an every-other-day schedule with whose house they play at.  Here they have a huge car carpet set up in the loft with about 127 hot wheels all over the place, parked precisely in their parking places.  I’m not sure what they have going on across the street…. but something Lego, I’m sure.

HOW hot wheels 009

I realized yesterday that I’m not getting much accomplished (in my two days since returning from vacation).  It’s because I don’t have a list.  Diligiently I hunted down my day-timer where I painstakingly make my daily lists….. the last three weeks of pages are blank.  (In my defense, I was gone for two of those weeks!)  No wonder I feel like I haven’t gotten anything done.  Lists are amazingly inspiring.  The thrill of checking off that little box cannot be overrated.  Not only are projects completed, blinds cleaned and closets cleared out, but the little row of boxes is checked off…. and that makes me happy.

Today’s list, that has yet to be made with pen to paper, includes: finish a Bag for Zaza (it’s half done), clean ONE blind (it’s a slow process, but it doesn’t make me cry when I do one a day), empty the suitcase, fertilize the lawn, plant Vinca all over the backyard (has to be done after 7 p.m. due to the temperature for me and the flowers) and de-collate my coupons.  Whew.  But just imagine the internal satisfaction of SIX boxes checked off.  Sweet victory!  That’s more than I’ve done in three weeks.

I also need to make a list for the kids of Things To Do during the summer.  They will not be as thrilled with their list as I am with mine.  Guaranteed.  Theirs includes daily piano practice, 30 minutes of reading, multiplication and division flashcards and chores.  (One measly hour…. MAX!)  Sounds like pure torture, doesn’t it?  I can already hear them moaning, “Mooooom, it’s SUMMER!”  That’s when I show them my list and ask if they want to trade.  They never do.  It works every time.  Do they think I’ll just willingly let their brains rot all summer???  Never!  That’s why I’m the mom.