Colorful Communities and a Historic Hurricane

Years ago was the grateful recipient of two trips to Mexico.  My Aunt and Uncle were committed to taking me to explore a new culture.  They worked to coordinate a trip that would invigorate my studies and reinforce the Spanish I’d been learning.  These trips were a highlight of my teen years and were life changing.  During both trips we flew into the airport in Puerto Vallarta and traveled by cab to a small fishing village, Rincón de Guayabitos meaning “corner of little guava trees”.  Sadly this humble town is in the path of the strongest hurricane ever-recorded.

Rincón de Guayabitos, Mexico

Rincón de Guayabitos, Mexico as seen from Google maps

An area with beautiful beaches, friendly people and a culture rich with color and life.  I loved exploring this land and meeting the people.  Sitting on the beach you were sure to see hardworking merchants hauling pounds of handmade goods up and down the beach.  Those images and my place in the scene stuck with me. Children as young as eight or nine walking the beach with homemade pastries for sale trying to support their family.  While I was fortunate to be on a beach practicing my Spanish young children were working to support their families modest way of life.  These people have always been close to my heart I admired their determination, their modest way of life, and the lively colors that surrounded them.

Many of my fondest memories were of walking the streets each night after dinner.  The people were so welcoming with music, color and happiness.  We saw many modest homes that though uniquely beautiful clearly weren’t structurally sound.  My last visit to this beautiful community was roughly 15 years ago.  I’m very hopeful that homes have been rebuilt and reinforced since my visits.  The strength of those homes and communities like this are about to be tested across Mexico’s Pacific coast.

Hurricane Patricia, the strongest hurricane ever-recorded, is bearing down on this beautiful town.  Tragically colorful modest homes are no match for 200 mile an hour winds.    This storm will likely hit land far exceeding the category 5 classification it’s been given.  Please keep the people of communities like Rincón de Guayabitos in your prayers!  I’m hopeful that the loss of life is far less that is being predicted.  I pray that somehow these people many of whom live without cars and running water will be able to escape this storm.  My heart will be with Rincón de Guayabitos for days to come.

To learn more about Rincón de Guayabitos or a nearby community http://jaltembabaylife.com/rincon-de-guayabitos

The BEST 5 minutes of our night


happier tomorrow les.1 foot lotion

Welcome to my new Building Happier Tomorrows Series!  This idea like most of mine came to me late at night when the laundry and dishes were next on my list.  Rather than tending to them I did the creative thing and let my mind imagine the difference I hope to make in this world.  For years I’ve been stuck with trying to find the joy in the mundane moments of my life.  I’ve spent years bowing to piles of laundry rather than making time for creativity.  I want to be remembered for living big and finding happiness even when days seem mundane.  It is my hope that this series will serve as a way to create happier tomorrows {in my home and yours}.

LESSON 1lotion toes

Nearly two years ago I fell in love with a family I don’t know. It’s hard to explain really but after reading the words of Kara Tippetts I was forever changed. I wrote about my first reactions to her blog here {written on the very night I found her}. Long story short I was hurting when I stumbled upon her blog Mundane Faithfulness yet her words captured me in my grief and encouraged my heart to believe in something larger than my reality.  I found her on October 22nd, 2013 it was {bare with me here} the anniversary of the eve of my first born’s due date. Ha ha that sounds ridiculous… my son Seth died, he was due to be born October 23rd, 2009.  To mommas dates like these matter and I was heartbroken with grief.  Anyway I was in awe of Kara’s love for God and her dedication to share her story despite its pain.  Plus I believe there was a fate that kept me up well into the wee hours that night.  Were it not for my despair that night I wouldn’t know the story of Kara.

In one memorable post Kara shared her nightly tradition rubbing the feet of her four little ones with lotion.  That stuck with me.  Here’s a woman battling a disease no being should face and she devoted time to lotion 40 tiny toes each night.  Oh to savor their sweetness!  Imagine being one of those kids seriously… they felt her big love!  I’m determined to bring calming traditions into my home.  While visiting our favorite local health food store, Natur-Tyme, with my daughter we stumbled upon a sweet lavender lotion.  Born a lotion lover she was covered after just one squirt.  Honestly my first reaction was to rub it off with a towel and go on about our less smelly business.

And then I remembered Kara’s tradition and my goal to sooth these little ones of mine.  So we found the biggest container of Alaffia Shea & Lavender Body Lotion they had.  Later I learned that this great lotion is not only perfectly smelly it’s also certified fair trade, with unrefined ingredients, and a whole bunch of other awesome things.  This company even has a maternal health care program in Africa {the origin of the shea they use}.  Even if you don’t buy this lotion do check this company out, I wish more companies were this giving to people and responsible for the way they leave our planet.  I’m in love with our new tradition and I can happily say I just returned from lotioning the feet of my little ones at 2:17am {because with the chaos of stories and teeth brushing I forgot to tend to this tradition hours ago}.

pedicure

I’m praying for you and your new traditions!  Please feel welcome to post traditions that make a difference in your life they may just make a difference for another family too!  Sharing is what our new Building Happier Tomorrow’s series is all about!

P.S. I just discovered that Alaffia also has a line of baby products.  Here’s a link to their Moisturizing Shea Butter Bubble Bath for Babies, Lemon-Lavender.  I’ll be sure to let you know what the kids think after we try the bubble bath!

This post contains affiliate links, full disclosure about our affiliates may be found here.  Thank you for supporting the sponsors that help to support our family.

Sunflower Peekaboo in Seth's Garden

STILL a Fairy Tale

 

still a fairytale

Sunflower Peekaboo in Seth’s Garden

 

Six years ago this very moment my husband and I looked teary-eyed at our computer searching for a fitting name for our first baby.  We had been debating names for months.  In our fairy tale life we would have had another 85 days of expectant bliss to decide.  Sadly that wasn’t our reality.  We’d been thrust into a world of sadness we didn’t even know could exist.  July 29th, 2009 we received the most devastating news any parent can get.  “I’m sorry to have to tell you but your baby has died.”  To be honest I don’t even know if that’s how they said ‘it’ or for that matter who said ‘it’ but you get the point… NO fairy tale ending here!  I remember moments of those early days trying to comprehend what had happened to our precious child.  grief quote-with-imageJuly 29th we got the news.  We went home called our families and cried our eyes out.  We just rested there in our dark room curtains drawn as the clouds cried with us for days.

July 30th We ached.  Every ounce of my body ached still holding so strongly onto my baby I just couldn’t imagine how I would survive letting this life go.  We walked at our favorite local boardwalk.  Along a peaceful nature trail.  I worried that someone would ask when I was due surely that would be my undoing.  No one asked.  Later Brent re-proposed to me promising to love me despite all of this worry and sadness.

July 31st started early. We drove an empty car.  No car seat, no baby bag, no blanket, no camera {If you know anyone ever whose going to the hospital to have a stillborn or sick baby please encourage them to take along baby stuff!} Even just a toy or book, a camera, a blanket, an outfit… something!  We brought none of the beautiful snugly baby items we’d just received at our shower days before.  We didn’t know it was okay to bring stuff.  We must have talked on the drive but all I can recall is silence.  We agreed to take the long road so we didn’t have to relive this drive past the hospital.  Make this drive different from our everyday commute.

This is a different day one that we needed to embrace and love despite its harsh edges!

Most people would assume the story only got darker and more heart-wrenching from that moment on.  Somehow we mustered the strength to embrace the day and share teary-eyed forced smiles.  We loved!  After a full and painful labor our baby became our first son, Seth Alexander Danega.  Sure he was born still but he was STILL born.  He still lived, he is still one of my children, and he is still an amazing part of our lives!  He’s the reason I ached to welcome his little siblings.  He’s the reason I’ve worked to create My sOnflower.  He’s the reason I must carry on and share his story.  He’s one of the reasons I’m still so in love with his daddy!  He’s the reason I’m the daydreaming momma I am today. :)  Our time in that delivery room could have become a memory of agony and heartache but instead we choose to see his beauty and our love!  Go love on your babies dear one!  More posts to come about the ways we’ve chosen to embrace the love of our son Seth who was STILL born!  Tomorrow we have a 6th birthday to celebrate.

i choose joy

Please don’t read this and take away sorrow or sadness take away a message of loving unconditionally even when it’s hard.  Go do something wonderful today!

Page 1 of 30

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén