My mother has been bothering me for years to write a blog. Every year I have the same answer… “What would I have to say that people would want to read?” I tell her when I have an answer for that question, I will write a blog. I seriously don’t know how people have time to write them. I don’t even have time to take a shower. Literally. It’s a problem. I don’t know how all these women out there write blogs. Not only are they writing blogs, they are writing blogs about all the crafts and food they make. How are they finding time for that? And most of them have more than one child. I only have one, and I need a shower, badly.
Now, I have something to write about. It’s been a long time coming and I stay up at nights thinking about it. I have been waiting for the perfect time, and I realized, there is no perfect time. I have to stop wasting time and do it …now. Four years ago, I went to Africa. Four years ago I made promises to people there that I would not forget them, that I would tell their stories. Four years ago. What have I done in four years?
My mom thought of the title “Before and Africa” and I actually love it. There are a lot of things my mom and I agree on, but usually when she has an idea “for” me, I politely turn her down. But this title struck a chord in me. I thought about all the blogs out there about style and fashion and craftiness and I thought about how my blog would probably be the antithesis of that. Maybe I do always buy the same long sleeved shirts at the GAP every three years when the old ones get holes in them. Maybe I do still have the same tennis shoes I bought for 30 bucks 6 years ago. Maybe I do only get my hair cut once a year. Maybe I am in desperate need of a style makeover, but I think this blog is more of a before and after of my soul. My soul before and now my soul (after) Africa…
So thanks mom, for the title and for recognizing there has been a change in me and that even though I have a hard time finding the words, it’s time to start trying.

Monday, May 12, 2014

M is for.....MELISSA

I love my baby sister.  If she had a fan club I would definitely be the president.   She ran the farthest her little legs have ever taken her this past weekend...all to raise money for baby M.  No one has been as enthusiastic about this adoption as she has.  Maybe it's because she knows what it's like to hold a baby with no parents.  Maybe it's because she was the one who held me as I sobbed in a toilet/shower stall in Africa when we had to leave those babies.  She knows what it's like to lose a piece of your heart to a country, to an orphan.  So she endured hours of training and completed the longest race of her life.  And I am so grateful.  Not only did she raise $1000 for our matching grant, she made me the proudest big sister on the planet.  Thanks Aunt Lis...for loving our son, and for your selfless, priceless gift to our family.  Your work will be rewarded.  Loya.

And she didn't even look actually I hate her.  But seriously, I love her. 
With Melissa's help...we are at $2434 of our $3000 grant.  Only $566 left to go! If you want to support the last leg of our adoption expenses click the donate button below:

don't forget to put our name and account number :)
Enter Family Name: Schmid
Enter  Family Acct. #: 4391

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Running the Race

Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.  Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.  1 Corinthians 9:24-27

The last few years we have been racing.  We’ve done triathlons, mini marathons, and a marathon.  But we haven’t been doing them to win any medals.  We run for something else.  We don’t run aimlessly.

 If you know the story of our brother-in-law, you know that he has been battling cancer for the last four years and this week he's been fighting hard.   He’s been in a lot of pain and for the first time in over 12 years (I think…maybe more) He was unable to run the Indy Mini marathon this weekend.  It was Tony's 33rd birthday,  and I know he would have felt more like celebrating if he had Dave running next to him.  They've gone down to the race together the last couple years, and Dave was there at the finish line when Tony finished his first one.  Dave is tough and also able to keep things lighthearted enough to keep us laughing.  After having 4.5 liters drained from his abdomen the other day on his Facebook he said “feeling drained.” And that’s Dave. He’s been continuing to stay so positive, but anyone who knows him knows that when he can’t continue to do the things he normally does,  that’s when he gets frustrated.  He wants to be there for his family.  He wants to be there for his  students.  He wants to be Dave.  He wants to run the race too…and he is, even when he isn’t physically.  He’s continuing to keep the faith and run the race.  And that’s what we love about him.  And that’s why we know we will all run the mini marathon next year …together. 

Keep up with Dave's fight here:
They've almost reached their 15,000 goal!

We continue to run the race. 

Wearing Uncle Dave's hat