Tuesday, June 16, 2009

the year of the base camp.

I know three girls in Africa at this very moment. They are all there with different groups, in different parts of the country, and doing different things, but they are all physically there right now. Amy, Becca, and Christyn are the lucky gals. I am giddy for each one of them to have these opportunities, yet insanely jealous in the very same breath.

You see, I lust after traveling. I have an uncontrollable urge at times to get on a plane and go somewhere foreign. And I know some of you out there who experience these same types of feelings. Matt and I have had the goal for Spain in 2010 since we were married over 2 years ago. We are definitely on our way mentally, and even coming closer each day financially as we make it a priority, however it still feels ages away. I read about other people having adventures, and I get jealous. I learn of people that are doing Study Abroad or signing up for the Peace Corp and I suddenly think I need to look into those programs for Matt and myself. I can't stop checking airline deals and calculating our finances to see if any of the trips are in our budget. However, remember how we just bought a house? Trips, especially foreign, are not an option at the moment.

So I have decided to name 2009 as the year of the base camp. Every good adventure needs a base camp to launch from and to come back too. Our base camp will be our home, and I will be putting almost all of my energy into creating a home that is warm, friendly, loving, light, and cheery. A place where anyone entering will feel like family, and instantly know that Matt and I are grateful people, who truly believe in a loving God, family values, and integrity. Where service and adventure go hand in hand, and where we are constantly striving to be better people each day.

As we've been cleaning and painting over the past week, I've had quite a bit of time to think a few things over. I have also been reading some very inspiring blog posts, and together I have come up with this little idea. This cute gal Rachel has a lovely blog with crafts and ideas galore, and from her blog I found Ashley Ann's blog. On Ashley's blog she told about a project that she did with some of her neighborhood girlfriends called Little Dresses for Africa. Please click on that link and go see some of her pictures, and read why she got involved.

"When I invited the girls I didn’t tell them what we were doing other than “honoring a special group of moms” and to bring 2 pillowcases. The moms we honored can no longer hold their daughters or provide them clothes. Most died from AIDS or other illnesses and their children were left as orphans. We honored those precious moms by putting our hands to work and creating beautiful dresses for their little girls. We may not have changed the world, but for those little girls when they pull those dresses over their tiny heads - their worlds will change."

I was so touched that I immediately contacted the company Little Dresses for Africa and introduced myself to the head hancha over there - Rachel - and she emailed me the details on what I'd need to do to make my own dresses, and where to mail them after they were sewed. I have been getting a few supplies here and there, but decided I would make this a more public event... because when more people are involved, more is accomplished.

I am hosting a "Little Dresses for Africa" party at our new house on Saturday, August 1st. I know it's over a month away, but that will allow time for pillow cases, ribbons, fabrics, and supplies to be gathered. I am going to enlist help from my family and friends {especially my very talented seamstress mother} but would also like to throw a shout out to the blog-o-sphere. Anyone living in Utah {basically the Salt Lake Valley] who is interested in coming, donating, or anything... please let me know. Anyone living outside of Utah - you can still be involved by sending supplies our way, making your own dresses {instructions and details can be found on their website} to add to our group, or giving supportive vibes and positive thoughts our way :) I have been a bit too focused on the "I can't travel" train, so I've decided that if I can't visit Africa myself right now, I'll send some hand crafted love their way through a wonderful organization. And I do believe this will help my travel bug calm down for a few more months... so that's positive.

Please let me know if you are interested in coming over to our base camp and helping, or if you are interested in donating supplies or time. I know it will be amazing and I'd love to share the warm fuzzies with everyone. It makes my heart leap and my eyes wet to think of how many girls would love a beautiful new dress, and it'd be an honor to put a smile on one or two faces.


  1. Thanks for the shoutout. I think my experience over here is very different from the other girls, but still cool nonetheless! You'll get to Africa one day, I seems like it's the thing to do these days! Way to help out with the little girls at the orphanages, very cool. Do they do anything for the little boys?

  2. YAY! I always love it when something like this is picked up and continued by another person and shared with the people around them! Can't wait to hear about how it went and see all the pretty dresses!

    I LOVE your scooters! My husband will be an instant fan.

  3. Totally understand the "I can't travel train"...I have been dreaming of Africa since high school. I love what you are doing with the dress party and can't wait to see pictures! Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog to let me know plans!

  4. africa was so great. i need to post about it.

    please give me more details about this thing, i feel like i should help.

    beccafoster at gmail dot com


  5. The idea of a base camp strikes me as brilliant... I can't quite explain why, but I'd love to think of my house (When I get one of my own.. *sigh*) that way.

    And the project sounds really amazing, I've wondered if there was something out there like that... it seems like a lot of charity organizations just want "new and store-bought" ---which really cuts out the feeling of giving sometimes.

    Re: your comment -- Thank you so much! I'm glad you enjoyed the pictures, I sure did (I think I may have been too excited and air-headed the day-of to notice most of the details, so pictures help!)

  6. Oh my goodness! I got a shout out! Woohoo! Thanks darling! you must, I repeat, MUST go to Africa someday. It is amazing. I would LOVE to go to your Africa party, however, I am will be in DC:( But let me know what I can do to help and I would LOVE to do anything. c3.costley@gmail.com