Tuesday, April 13, 2010

World Vision's 3-month Update on Haiti

The numbers aren't pretty.

  • 230,00 killed
  • 1 million homeless
  • 2 million in need of aid
It's been three months since the January 12th earthquake that rocked Haiti and World Vision just sent out an email detailing their part of the relief efforts. They've been working in Haiti for 30-plus years and were uniquely positioned to start rescue/relief work within hours of the quake.

Here's what World Vision has been able to do (thanks to partners and donors):

"Gifts from partners like you are bringing hope to quake-affected children and families. World Vision began providing help within hours of the disaster. During the first three months after the earthquake, you helped us distribute food to more than 1.5 million people, and provide blankets, tarps, tents, hygiene kits, mosquito nets, and more to over 100,000 people.

World Vision was in Haiti long before the quake — caring for 300,000 children. With the help of generous donors like you, we’ll be there long afterward, too."

While things are definitely not great (check out The Big Picture's post: Haiti: 70 Days Later), it is great to hear good news coming from the country.

Doug and I will be there in five weeks.

(Image from World Vision's Twitter profile.)

Monday, April 12, 2010

This is What It's All About

Why do Sonja and I spend our Thursday nights with high schoolers? This is why:

This is from our spring retreat weekend.

I think my favorite part is the fact that the teens are out there with their friends in the freezing cold (40 degree) water, just to be a part of the event and show their support. Awesome stuff!

(By the way, if you're not familiar with baptism, Wikipedia has a pretty good description.)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Two Things... Probably Contradictory

I read this quote this morning in Crazy Love (which, by the way, you should buy and read right now).

"The way we live out our day is the way we live out our lives." - Annie Dillard

Just marinate on what that means for a second...


(Moving on...)

Of course, having put something out there that's profound and life-changing, I am now also going to share with you something else that I saw this morning. It is also life-changing. But for entirely different reasons.

What's better than a moon-faced, chubby, Taiwanese kid singing Whitney Houston? Practically nothing.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Granite State of Mind

I shared this on Facebook, but figured you should see its genius here, too.

Opening Day! (of Allergy Season)

Friday night, I went over to my parents' place (because I like to party) and immediately started sneezing when I walked in the door. This isn't at all unusual -- my parents still have two dogs and a cat as a ploy to ensure I never, ever move back and only visit for short periods of time, sporadically at best.

The thing was, after I left, I didn't stop sneezing. Not in the few hours after, not the next day, nor the day after that. It just went on through the entire weekend. Now as I type, my eyes itch, my breathing is wheezy, and I have a box of Kleenex next to my desk. Hmm... it must be allergy season.

Oh joy.

Let me tell you, I absolutely love springtime. For anyone who lives in the Northeast, you know how great this time of year can be. The snow/sleet/rain/hail/ice cubes from heaven have stopped falling. You can't see your breath in the morning and you fingers don't feel like they're going to fall off in the time it takes to walk from your front door to your car.

Up here, spring is an event. People start wearing shorts and flip-flops once it hits 50, even though it's still probably about a month too early. Red Sox jerseys and sun dresses re-enter as wardrobe staples. Bikers pull their motorcycles from storage (note to Sonja: think how glorious it would be to take that first scooter ride of the season? Can I PLEASE get one?). Everyone gathers outside to hang out in driveways and on front porches while soaking in the sun's rays. It's glorious. It's a total "winter's over" reawakening, and I love it. I celebrate it. I flip-flop and short it. I even played nine holes on Saturday (so I could repeatedly four-putt it).

Everything would be perfect if I could just breathe.

My goodness, is this time of the year awful for fellow allergy sufferers. The majority of you won't get what I'm talking about, but with the flowers blooming and trees budding, it's like two weeks of hell on earth for people like me. The worst thing is that I shouldn't be outside, but it's so nice that I just can't avoid it. I want to swing the clubs. I want to run 15-20 miles a week. I want to go for walks downtown and sit on the side porch. And, ideally, I'd like to do it without feeling like my head is going to explode.

Still, it's a small price to pay for spring. See you out there! I'll be the guy with the surgical mask on.

Photo from Kleenex.com