A tip-toe back to bed and a step towards a dream

I had been caught in a thick early morning dream that told me I had suddenly returned to England. It was one of those deep dreams that was hard to wake up out of. But as I rolled over to see the snowy hazed daylight shining in my window, I knew I was definitely in a Canadian winter. I breathed a happy sigh because waking up when it was daylight meant it was a day off.

I tiptoed down to the Keurig and made my French Roast with a shot of hazelnut cream – just the way I like it. I cut a couple pieces of paper to paste on my ‘saving jars’ and tip toed back up stairs, plot and pleasure in hand.

The tradition of crawling back into bed with morning coffee to read my Bible started when I was living in England. I’d fall asleep with my hot water bottle, but by the time the morning knocked on my door, I didn’t want to crawl out from under the covers. I like cozy. So in England, I would make my coffee and breakfast and return to the refuge of warmth.

The tradition has continued for me, even on workdays, back home in Alberta. But I digress from comfy bed traditions to this Friday’s post about taking action towards a dream.

See these kids? These are my kids. The girl, Ami, lives in Burkina Faso (western Africa) and she has been my sponsor child for seven years now through Compassion Canada. I got her when she was 8 years old and I was in College. For a few months, a girls group that I led sponsored her. When our group disbanded after College was done, Ami became mine.

The other day I sat down to write her a letter online and then send her a Christmas card, and again I had that aching desire to meet her. She lives with her parents and five siblings in a small western Africa village. I know that because of my monthly support, she has been able to get an education rather than just work to support her family. I know that Ami learns about Jesus and has a community of friends. For me, education is SO important because it helps to end the cycle of poverty, provides a platform on which she can dream from, and as a girl, reduces the chances of her falling into prostitution by a drastic percentage. Ami, is my girl.

Then there is Leon who was just born in April and I started supporting through Home of Hope. He and his Mom, Margaret, live in Kenya, in the slums of Nairobi.  She had Leon out of prostitution and because of the work of Home of Hope near the dump, she’s been able to keep her baby and find new life herself. Leon will some day get an education and learn about Jesus, and have his mother in his life. I couldn’t be happier to know that a simple $40 a month created that hope.

My dream is to go to Africa, and it has been for a while. I have been taking other trips to other places for years, but today, I made a step. I started my Africa fund. To go to Rwanda, Kenya, and Burkina Faso will cost over $5000, but I’ve started to make steps.

I should add to last week’s bucketlist: Meet my sponsor kids.

What small step can you take towards a dream today?

It’s a pyjama and dreaming day for me…  Until next time – Keep dreaming.


Create 2 Educate :: Art Show

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed individuals can change the world.”
Margaret Mead

This past winter while experiencing a green winter and serving drinks in an English tea room, I learned that Home of Hope was starting schools in Rwanda and Kenya – all by faith. I also learned that there wasn’t a lot of funding yet for these schools and the hundreds of kids that need education. My immediate reaction was, “What can I do?”  The idea came that when I returned to Canada, perhaps I could gather artistic friends and do an art show in my home city.

Thus was born Create 2 Educate. This Saturday, July 21 from 1-5pm at Hudson Madison in downtown Red Deer, we will be having a silent auction in support of these schools with Home of Hope.

Each dollar REALLY will make a difference!

A child could go to school for $2 a month! Monthly fees for a teacher are $200. If we raise $2000, we could send 100 kids to school for a year, or provide a salary for a teacher for a year. Perhaps we will raise more, and be able to do both!!

I am beyond thankful for the friends who have donated so far.  I will also have some of my European photography prints for sale. A big thank you to Hudson Madison for opening their doors as our venue, to Babycakes Cupcakery for donating cupcakes, and to the loads of friends who’ve donated their creativity! You are heroes to these kids.

Justina Smith
John Mueller Photography
Lindsey McStravick Photography
Britton Ledingham
Lani Ledingham
Nathan Graalman
Blaine Alexander
Rachel Zwambag
Osi Lahtinen-Cruz
Gloria Strohschein
Crystal Webb
Hudson Madison
Gloria Strohschein

Also thank you to Jolena Sebry and Sauve MacBean for the musical entertainment they will be providing throguhout the afternoon!

If you are in the Red Deer area, we hope to see you this Saturday at Hudson Madison and help us raise funds to send these kids to school!

Christmas on Purpose – Purchase Travel Prints for a Cause

If you are looking for some new photos for your home or office, and also want to make a difference in the lives of children this Christmas… then keep reading! 

From today until December 15, 2011 — ALL profit made on any purchases from lanilea.smugmug.com will be donated 50/50 to the Home of Hope (www.homeofhope.ca) and the Pearl Alliance Christmas Project with Zoe International (www.pearlalliance.org).

There are loads of options on lanilea.smugmug.com for photos and merchandise. From gift cards to canvas prints or aprons to playing cards … you can give a creative gift with a cause this Christmas! The majority of photos are from Europe and the UK.

If you just want the digital file and would like 100% of your donation to go towards these projects, please email me at lledingham@hotmail.com and we can coordinate distribution and payment. I am asking a minimum donation of $25 per photo.

On December 15, I will log into my account, and divide up 50/50 whatever has been purchased on the SmugMug site. Just think how many kids we could bless?

Thank you for your support!

Please feel free to share this blog and get as many people on board as we can!
… Let’s make a difference!

~ Lani