Love Rocks and Tea Cups

Disney 1

I was standing in line waiting.  The little boy behind me was so excited and talking non-stop about what ride he was going on next. His mom was asking him questions and prompting him to remember that he was not the only one in his group. “Maybe we should ask your sister what she wants to do next.”

“Elsa and Anna,” his little sister said loudly.

I turned to see the face of this little voice and smiled. Tom and I had just watched Frozen for the first time on Anna and Abigail’s Heaven Day ~ I could totally understand why any little girl would want to meet these two sisters.

The dad, seeing that I was listening and smiling, then asked, “Where is the rest of your family?”

I guess it is safe to assume that when you are at Disneyland you are usually with your family ~ most often little children. I smiled thinking that he saw in me a mother, a wife and someone that, of course, would be sharing this experience with her family.

~

What I had experienced the day before was that I was not alone on my little adventure to Disney. My girls met me there from Heaven. I could not see them or touch them but I could hear them ~ their excitement, their laughter, their bickering over which ride or attraction to see next and their overall awe of a place they had always wanted to go.

I can honestly say that it was truly amazing how they showed up. They guided me through that park and made sure I didn’t miss anything they wanted to do ~ except for the teacups where I had a long conversation (yes, I was that lady who appeared to be talking to herself) with Anna about how I just couldn’t do it and that if I did I would surely get sick. We settled on watching and leaving 20 Love Rocks instead.

That was not the only place I left Love Rocks ~ I brought over 200 and they were all left in the park. My girls loved to play spy and sneak around the house leaving little treasure for me to find. I’m sure I had some Heavenly protection as I placed each Love Rock as I know there was some security guy watching me on surveillance wondering what I was doing.

At the end of my day I sat on Main St. waiting to watch Mickey’s Soundsational Parade. I wanted to make sure I got a good seat, front row and in the shade. I sat there watching as family after family walked by.

My heart began to get heavy, I missed my family.

The parade started and I could hear Anna as clear as day whisper in my ear, “Mama, this is so fun, thank you so much for bringing us!” And then she said the best part, “I love you so much!”

I smiled and watched the best parade I’ve seen in a long time and it didn’t even have candy.

~

“They will be here shortly,” I told the dad and then I shared with his kids what our favorite rides were.

me and minnie goofy lr disney disney 6 hats114

Class 8 at Kiambogo Primary School

kiambogo

We arrived and within minutes most of our team had axes and were intrenched in removing the concrete floor from the classroom. The plan was to remove the old flooring, to pour concrete and then lay tile. We were there to assist a group of local men ~ we were there to connect and bless this little school in Kijabe.

Tom

While most of the team were busy tending to the job at hand a few of us were drawn elsewhere. I couldn’t help it ~ I couldn’t resist their smiles, laughter and beautiful nature. It was break and they were playing outside ~ all very curious of the visitors.

drawn elsewhere

I asked their names and they started writing them on my hand ~ Grace, Nancy, Mercy, Susan.  Such beautiful girls, all the same age as Abigail.

hand names

As the week progressed so did the classroom renovation and our connection with the kids. We became friends with the local workers, fine tuned our jump roping skills and shared an experience that will forever be close to my heart.

workjump roping

On Friday, we were blessed to be given the opportunity to share Love Rocks with the students. After sharing the Love Rock story and the love and joy of Anna and Abigail, we passed out small pieces of the concrete floor from class 8 and watched as they, all while asking questions about Anna and Abigail, made Love Rocks. At one point I was very overcome with emotion. I couldn’t believe I was in Africa sharing the Love and Joy of my girls.

love rocks k

The students really connected with the project and we decided that we would share the Love Rocks with their local church that Sunday. It was a perfect way to celebrate the local school, the work that was being done and to share the love and joy of my girls with this beautiful village.

church love rocks

I feel there were so many blessings that came from our time at Kiambogo. We went thinking we were going to be blessing them, we left being the ones that were blessed.

tile floor

perfect

Faith

t love rock 5

We walked down a short path and were greeted by her son, her care-giver and keeper of her land. He smiled and welcomed us to their homestead. I’m sure for both of them it was a bit overwhelming to have so many visitors at once.

She was sitting in front of the door of her home, a 10 x 10 brick structure with a tin roof and dirt floor. She wore a beautiful head scarf and was bundled up with layers of sweaters and beautiful fabrics that I’m sure were either sewn by her or for her. She heard us coming, but due to her visual impairment she did not see us.

I wondered what she was thinking as she heard so many people approaching her place of residence?

She was grateful for the gifts that we brought and was forthcoming on her prayer needs. Her prayer was for something I take for granted every day of my life, I immediately started praying. It’s hard for me to understand how some don’t even have their basic needs met while others, like myself, have more than enough. I continued to pray.

I knelt down, placed a Love Rock in the palm of her hand and held her hands in mine. A member of our group translated for me as I shared about the token of love I was giving her. We both held each others hands tightly, I whispered, “love and joy.”

She was grateful and I was humbled.

I stood up, closed my eyes and thanked God for the gift of this encounter, for teaching me once again the strength that comes from love and allowing me to pray for this beautiful woman.

T Love Rock

Fatih is trusting Photo by: Jaquie George

 

 

The Love Rocks Story

love rocks info

Today I spent some time updating the Love Rocks page.  I encourage anyone who is sharing Love Rocks to use this as a guide while sharing. This information can also be found here.

The Love Rock Story

Sometimes life brings circumstances that are completely out of your control. In those times, it’s important to remember the beauty in life, love​,​ and know​ing​ that God can​ — and will​ — bring a peace that surpasses all understand​ing​.

Love Rocks was inspired by two girls who ​lived with immense ​Love and ​Joy​. In their honor, we have chosen to s​hare that ​Love and ​Joy ​with anyone ​willing to receive it. Thank you for ​celebrating with us!

I have had a beautiful life filled with lots of laughter, smiles, lots of love, beautiful children, a wonderful, dedicated and loving husband, solid friendships and a community that loves and supports their neighbors unconditionally.

On Oct. 20, 2013, the unthinkable happened to my family. My daughters, Anna (6) and Abigail (11) were hit by car in front of our house. Both girls went to Heaven that night without warning.

Tom and I have had to navigate grief that we wouldn’t wish upon anyone. Our house is now empty – no laughter, no dance parties, no morning cuddles, no fighting about homework or bonding over our favorite meal. Empty.

We decided shortly after the girls went to Heaven that we were not going to allow the tragedy of one night to define our girls’ lives here on earth and the life they were now living in Heaven. Their legacy would not be this tragedy but rather the love and joy that they poured out to everyone who knew them and hopefully everyone who would hear their story.

We did not have choice on whether they went to Heaven on October 20th. We do, however, have a choice on how we live our lives honoring our Creator and honoring the lives of our sweet girls.

We choose Love and Joy!

Anna’s and Abigail’s lives were full of so much love and so much joy. They had a way of lighting up a room with their presence and putting smiles on the faces of those they came in contact with. They loved each other dearly and they were definitely sisters – maybe not by blood, but by the way they knew exactly how to push each others’ buttons. Anna adored her sister and wanted to be around her all the time. Abigail loved her little sister and was annoyed by the fact that Anna wanted to be around her all the time. True sisters!

Anna loved horses, Abigail loved theater. Both girls loved to dance, climb, be with their friends and loved family time. They would prefer a game as a family over a movie any night – LIFE, UNO and Jungle Speed being their all time favorites.

They were beautiful beyond words, both on the outside and more importantly on the inside. They had giving hearts and loved to find ways in which they could help those in need. They were insightful, kind, nurturing and loving to all who had the honor of being in their presence, especially their friends.

In April of 2014, 6 months after the girls went to Heaven, Tom and I felt nudged to share a project that we as a family did for our wedding in June of 2011. The girls, Tom’s mom and I spent time cutting out fabric hearts from our favorite fabrics and then Mod Podging them to river rocks. We made one for each of our guests to take home and another one that would be written on by our guests for us to keep. These little rocks have held a lot of meaning in our house since our wedding day and are placed in various rooms so that we can enjoy them no matter where we are.

That little nudge to share took on a life of it’s own. On April 20th, I launched the Facebook Page, Love Rocks. I shared a bit of our story and our hope for spreading Love and Joy through these simple rocks and included a tutorial for how to make them. Before pushing publish button, I had to come to terms with the fact that nothing may happen with this little idea of ours. I took a deep breath, said a prayer, and sent our idea out into the world.

What has happened over the past 5 months has been miraculous. Love Rocks have been shared in our little town, our state of Oregon, in neighboring states and in every other state in the U.S. Love Rocks have been shared in Africa, Asia, South America, Europe and Australia. I’m still waiting for a picture to be posted in Antarctica.

There are photos of Love Rocks in parks, on beaches, on The Great Wall of China, in front of the Eiffel Tower, on doorsteps, in hospitals, at weddings and at funerals, in a secured NASA facility and at Anna’s and Abigail’s tree.

There have been so many stories of how these little rocks with fabric hearts have found their rightful owner just when they needed it most. They have warmed hearts and brought so much Love and Joy to this world — so much more than we could have ever imagined when we felt nudged to share.

The inspiration for Love Rocks comes from Anna, Abigail, and our loving community that supported us and continues to care for us. The outpouring of Love and the immense Joy that is felt throughout the world is their legacy –one filled with hope, light and laughter.

My girls lives were and are beautiful. They have taught so many how to live a love story and I am very proud to be their mom.

Peace Comes Through Loving

love rock blue

What I have found more than anything else these last 4 months through making and sharing Love Rocks is that people want to share and receive love!!! There is so much going on in our world and I truly feel that peace will come through loving.

I have felt this first hand in my own life.

There is something about these little rocks with fabric hearts on them that make people smile, think and want to share. If all 9,000 plus people in the Love Rock community made one Love Rock and placed it in the world just think what would happen if that kept multiplying.

Could our news be filled with stories of love, hope and how people take care of one another despite their differences?

Let’s share Love Rocks all over the place; with teachers and school staff as your kids go back to school, with your kids as they go back to school, with community members as you go to the grocery store or local market, with neighbors, with other people’s neighbors, with people who make big decisions in this country, with someone you need to forgive or who has asked for forgiveness, with individuals or families you know are going through a rough time, with our countries homeless as you wait for the light to turn green…basically share Love and Joy everywhere you go.

I know my girls are in Heaven, along with so many others, smiling at all the love and joy being shared.

This Love Rock community can truly make a difference…don’t give up because LOVE ROCKS!!!

Will you spread Love and Joy today?