Thursday, October 30, 2008

The poetry of Perfect Timing


This entry is called:

The poetry of Perfect Timing

I am asking you for poetry submissions (via the comment section or email) that I may post.

Here's mine:

A collection of ribbon
colors varied, waiting
to be wrapped around a present
or tied in a child's hair
or be bundled around a bouquet
beautiful ribbon waiting
to be shaped and positioned
for a moment that is worthy
of unwrapping with this
beautiful ribbon

Monday, October 27, 2008

I want to be a DREAMER

Eleanor Roosevelt:
The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

Robert H. Schuller:
Build a dream and the dream will build you.

Carl Sandburg:
Nothing happens unless first a dream.

Henry David Thoreau:
Our truest life is when we are in our dreams awake.

Maya Angelou:
A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.

Kahlil Gibran:
To understand the heart and mind of a person, look not at what he has already achieved, but at what he aspires to do.

Henry David Thoreau:
Dreams are the touchstones of our characters.

Albert Einstein:
When I examine myself and my methods of thought, I come to the conclusion that the gift of fantasy has meant more to me than my talent for absorbing positive knowledge.

Ralph Waldo Emerson:
Hitch your wagon to a star.

Vincent Van Gogh:
I dream my painting and then paint my dream.

John F. Kennedy:
The problems of this world cannot possibly be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons are limited by the obvious realities. We need men who can dream of things that never were.

Charles Du Bos:
The important thing is this: to be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.

William Arthur Ward:
If you can imagine it, you can achieve it. If you can dream it, you can become it.

Barack Obama:
Together our dreams can become one.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Wonder & Love

As the time goes by, I feel more and more connected to the little spirit that will be soon introduced as my daughter. I'm officially in the "ok, you really could get a call soon" window (in case you didn't notice, there's a ticker on the left side of this blog that is monitoring my wait time). But because I know some of the families ahead of me in the "wait", I'm pretty sure it will be another month until the life changing introduction.  This wait time I'm so appreciative of because nothing can describe the power of this wait. It's a time of great emotion, vulnerability, intention, reflection, learning, curiosity, wonder and love. I'm falling in love with her and Ethiopia during this wait.

The beautiful photo (below) is shot by Andarge Asfaw in his new Ethiopia photography book called ETHIOPIA FROM THE HEART. When Andarge Asfaw returned to his childhood home, Ethiopia, he had not been there for 27 years. What he experienced and photographed upon his initial return pushed him to get more involved in environmental work, and to use photography as his tool of choice.

Asfaw attended Cornell University and he is a graduate of Hallmark Institute of Photography. His work has been highlighted by Newsweek, Vanity Fair, Esquire and The Washington Post. Through exhibiting and lecturing about “Ethiopia from the Heart”, I hope to build a community that will support my future efforts to facilitate environmental stewardship in Ethiopia and in everyone’s own backyard. The more recognition the book gets, the stronger the message becomes. Book sales fund tree-planting in Ethiopia through Greener Ethiopia and Trees for the Future.  This photo is called "Running through the Fields".

I also wanted to feature this amazing form of Ethiopian Art - video storytelling that I found on youtube called I AM FROM THE SKY.  I've never seen anything like this, beautiful.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Be Inspired

Denver, CO -- Yohannes Gebregeorgis, a native of Ethiopia and children's literacy advocate, has been named a Top 10 Hero of the Year by CNN. Mr. Gebregeorgis was selected from more than 3,000 individuals nominated by viewers throughout the year. Finalists were selected by a Blue Ribbon panel of judges that includes Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Jane Goodall and Deepak Chopra. The Top 10 Heroes will be recognized in CNN's "All-Star Tribute" to air on Thanksgiving.

Mr. Gebregeorgis was first recognized as a "hero" by CNN in May for his work championing children in Ethiopia. A former political refugee who worked as a librarian at San Francisco Public Library, Mr. Gebregeorgis is the co-founder of Ethiopia Reads, a non-profit organization that works to create a reading culture in Ethiopia by connecting children with books. In a country where 99% of schools have no libraries, Mr. Gebregeorgis and Ethiopia Reads are improving lives, one book at a time.

From October 12 to December 15, Mr. Gebregeorgis will visit cities across the United States, sharing his story and vision for Ethiopia Reads. Cities include Washington, DC; San Francisco, CA; Seattle, WA; Kansas City, KS; Denver, CO; Albuquerque, NM; Los Angeles, CA; Minneapolis, MN; and New York, NY. A complete itinerary follows.

Growing up in rural Ethiopia with very little access to books, Gebregeorgis was 19 years old the first time he picked up a book for pleasure. This experience went on to shape his life as a literacy advocate, children's book author, and co-founder of Ethiopia Reads, a non-profit organization based in Denver, CO and Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Gebregeorgis came to the United States in 1983 seeking political asylum from the then-military dictatorship in Ethiopia. He worked as a hospital pharmacist and continued pursuing his education, earning a Bachelor's of Arts in journalism and English literature and a Master's degree in library science.

Later, as a children's librarian at the San Francisco Public Library, Gebregeorgis realized there were few books published in local Ethiopian languages. So he wrote Silly Mammo, the first bilingual Amharic-English children's book. He enlisted the support of acclaimed children's author, Jane Kurtz, who helped raise funds for the first printing. Ms. Kurtz is now President of the Ethiopia Reads Board of Directors.

In 2002, Gebregeorgis left his job in San Francisco and returned to Ethiopia. With 15,000 books donated by the San Francisco Children's Library, he opened a children's library on the first floor of his Addis Ababa home. The library was so deluged by children that it soon required the addition of two large tents.

Today, Shola Children's Library records an average of 60,000 visits per year. Additionally, Ethiopia Reads is planting libraries in public schools across Addis Ababa and Awassa at the rate of one per month. Ethiopia Reads has published six bi-lingual story books for children.

Gebregeorgis is the recipient of the 2008 Presidential Citation for International Innovation from the American Library Association, the first to receive this honor in its inaugural year.

Gebregeorgis lives in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he serves as the Executive Director of Ethiopia Reads.

love it

Trunki was created by Rob Law, a young British designer. The award winning design was developed to prevent children carrying heavy bags and damaging their backs. Rob explains;

"I had an idea to utilise the wasted space found in ride-on toys, so designed a hard suitcase like shell that would be fun to ride yet also functioned as hand luggage."

Thursday, October 9, 2008

4 Months Closer to Liv!

Sweet sweet day
a reason to celebrate

souls touch souls
hopes waterfall
compassion connects
journeys imagined

lucky us to be
in this world.

Dedicated to Baby M, Heather & Chris

Ethiopian Children sitting in a row for a blessing.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Lucky Us

So what's weird about this blog thing is that the majority of the time that I write, I forget that people are reading.  So to my surprise, I received a gift in the mail today that represented one of my blog entries and it literally blew me away.  
Presenting Suzanne, my lovely sister in law - a truly inspired individual.  She sent me a package of super duper cute clothes for Liv.  So adorable and generous and then I opened a box with a beautiful necklace.  I started reading the card and was completely overwhelmed by the thought and intention behind the gift.
She had a necklace made for me by her special friend base on my blog entry called Liv and Love.  This entry is about the connection I feel between Liv and my father.  Without sharing the entirety of the note, Suzanne so eloquently shared with me how perfect the necklace represented my mindset and inspiration with the 3 charms.  She honored Liv, my father, my all knowingness, Ethiopia's amazing culture and my intention to welcome Liv into this world.  
It's just beyond a major WOW and all I can say is that I'm so honored and grateful to feel so loved.  Thank you deeply.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

What's in a name?

So I'm approaching the 4 month mark of waiting for the call to introduce me to my daughter. Every day I feel closer to her.  I can only explain the feeling like a very long time ago we made a pledge to be together and it will come true soon.  As I think of her and who she'll be I am tickled with possibility.   Maybe she'll love stars, worms, drums, ribbon, pineapple, science, hamsters, etc...

In an earlier post, I explained why I picked the name Liv and it's meaning - a vow with God and all the other reasons I liked it. There's no doubt that names are ultra personal and people choose based on family, culture, meaning, sound, etc... Well, for fun, a friend pointed out this website that defines some one's personality based on the numerology of their name.  Here's what I got when I typed in Liv at

Thought, analysis, introspection, and seclusiveness are all characteristics of the expression number 7. The hallmark of the number 7 is a good mind, and especially good at searching out and finding the truth. You are so very capable of analyzing, judging and discriminating, that very little ever escapes your observation and deep understanding. You are the type of person that can really get involved in a search for wisdom or hidden truths, often becoming an authority on whatever it is your are focusing on. This can easily be of a technical or scientific nature, or it may be religious or occult, it matters very little, you pursue knowledge with the same sort of vigor. You can make a very fine teacher, or because of a natural inclination toward the spiritual, you may become deeply emerged in religious affairs or even psychic explorations. You tend to operate on a rather different wavelength, and many of your friends may not really know you very well. The positive aspects of the 7 expression are that you can be a true perfectionist in a very positive sense of the word. You are very logical, and usually employ a quite rational approach to most things you do. You can be so rational at times that you almost seem to lack emotion, and when you are faced with an emotional situation, you may have a bit of a problem coping with it. You have excellent capabilities to study and learn really deep and difficult subjects, and to search for hidden fundamentals. At full maturity you are likely to be a very peaceful and poised individual.

Here's what I get for Amy:
An Expression of 3 produces a quest for destiny with words along a variety of lines that may include writing, speaking, singing, acting or teaching; our entertainers, writers, litigators, teachers, salesmen, and composers. You also have the destiny to sell yourself or sell just about any product that comes along. You are imaginative in your presentation, and you may have creative talents in the arts, although these are more likely to be latent. You are an optimistic person that seems ever enthusiastic about life and living. You are friendly, loving and social, and people like you because you are charming and such a good conversationalist. Your ability to communicate may often inspire others. It is your role in life to inspire and motivate; to raise the spirits of those around you.

Hmmmmmmmmmm, we shall see...

Friday, October 3, 2008

Presenting Eyob

Eyob, is an Ethiopian American artist living in Sioux Falls.  

"Even at this time, my concept of art has come into in accordance with the laws of the inner force. The spiritual subject lives, has its own powers and actively modifies the spiritual atmosphere. Nonetheless, painting is not a pointless activity but a power that helps to refine the soul. Art is like daily bread for the soul. However the artist should have a message to convey. A message revolves to him by his inner voice which also accounts for the beauty of his work. Only that is beautiful."

A change is gonna come

This about sums it up!