Saturday, 19 November 2011

Peace City powered by the Son!

We are high above the clouds somewhere between Chennai and New Delhi. What a perfect place to soak in everything we have experienced in India. From Pastor Samson's spirit-filled hospitality to witnessing his incredible ministry firsthand, I will never forget the stories of his struggles and walk with the Lord.



Words cannot express how blessed I feel to have spent time with the beautiful children of Peace City. Even though a story of sadness initially led them to Peace City, their genuine happiness and love for each other was so clear to see.



The first phase of the solar project is complete. SELCO worked around the clock to install lights and fan points for us to see on our trip. Solar lights now power the entire main building. (boys and girls dormitories, toilets, offices, meeting rooms, common areas and outdoor walkways). As soon as the second building is complete, wiring will be run to power lights and fans in those rooms as well, including a new kitchen and eating hall. Pastor Samson has ideas for the rental business, which will take off soon and begin generating revenue for Peace City!!




Although saying goodbye to the children, Pastor Samson and his family was difficult, I pray that God will keep our time apart short.

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Incredible India!

It has been an amazing and emotional few days. Today, we made a second trip to the slum colony in Ongole. These people are the most amazingly humble and hospitable people I have ever encountered. The children loved having their pictures taken (and seeing their photos) and the adults welcomed us with warm smiles and waves.

Tomorrow, we're going back to Peace City to meet with a SELCO rep and review the work done on the solar system. Already many of the lights are working and the main building should be complete by tomorrow!!

Friday, 11 November 2011

Peace City arrival

After a crazy and fun day in Chennai, we made the 5 hour road trip to Ongole and Peace City today. What an amazing welcome we received! The children were so genuinely happy to welcome us to their home.

After a brief presentation of flowers and wonderful chants of "Welcome to Peace City! Welcome to India", Pastor Samson and Kirby gave a tour of the campus. It was such a blessing to see where and how these beautiful children live and learn each day.

We ended the tour on the roof, where 6 solar panels have already been installed. Throughout the rest of the buildings, SELCO workers were hard at work wiring lights and fans. It is still surreal to witness the fruition of so much prayer and dedication by so many of you!

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

We....YOU did it!

I am sitting in Gatwick airport waiting for my flight to India!! What an incredible journey this has been so far. From the initial 30-day challenge to working with SELCO on the solar design to finally being on my way to see it all.

Thank you so much for all of your support and encouragement throughout the past few months. I could not have done it without you. I'd like to say a special thank you to my in incredible with, Lindsay. Without her, this would certainly have not been possible. Her love and motivation saw me through the rougher days of the 30-day challenge. I know I was a grumpy bear in the beginning with no coffee and significantly fewer calories, but she stood right by my side the whole way. Not to mention eating on $1/day for a week!! What an incredible wife and best friend.

Internet service will be spotty, at best, in India, but I will be loading pictures as we go along. I'd love to share the story that you helped write through financial and spiritual support.

I received word last night that, thanks to an extremely generous offer, we have reached our goal for the solar project!! What a blessing!!!!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Contributions Doubled!!!

A donor has offered to DOUBLE every donation until we reach our goal!!!

We need an additional $3,200 to reach $11,560.

So, all we need is another $1,600 and we're there!!

Spread the word and help us complete the solar project for the these wonderful children!

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Installation Commencing SOON!!!!!

With an incredibly joyful heart, I am excited to announce that installation on the solar project will commence in 1 week!!!!  I just received word, from SELCO, that parts have been ordered and the crew should arrive on November 8th or 9th to begin construction.  Even more exciting is that I should be able to witness a working system during my visit to the orphanage at Peace City!!!!!!!

I cannot put into words how much your support and encouragement have meant to me over the past 2 months.  From Day 1 of the 30-Day challenge, so many of you have given emotionally and financially to this project.  I thank you, and more importantly the orphans who will be forever changed because of this project thank you.

Thus far, we have raised 70% of the funds for the solar system.  This was enough to begin procurement and installation.  We will need to pay the additional 30% upon completion.  This gives us roughly two weeks to raise an additional $3,000.  I have trusted you and God to get us this far, and I will do the same now!!  Spread the word and help push us to the FINISH LINE!!!!

Monday, 24 October 2011

Great News!!!

I just received the new proposal from SELCO, and I am extremely excited to say that it is well below the initial bid from a local contractor.  Not only is SELCO a well-respected solar company in India for quality and innovation, they specialize in providing solar initiatives to the rural poor in Southern India. 

SELCO's proposed system which will power over 80 lights and numerous fans throughout the orphanage and mission, plsu the charging station will cost 576,000 Rupees or $11,560!!  I was completely blown away at SELCO's professionalism, dedication and giving heart.

While $11,560 is still a significant amount of money, we are so close to the goal, I can see it!!  (with solar powered lanterns, of course).  Thank you so much for everyone who has given and brought us so close to our goal.  Spread the word and ensure that we can go all the way!!

I purchased my flights to India and Nepal last night.  Only 3 weeks to go before we set off for an amazing experience.  How wonderful will it be to see, firsthand, the impact that the solar project has on these incredible children...all thanks to you!!! 

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Update

Here I am!  oh, how I've missed you, Blogspot. 

I wanted to give a quick update on the Solar Project.  Everything is in full swing on the design side.  Before the 30-Day Challenge, I began speaking with a new solar company in southern India, called SELCO.  These guys have been amazing!  SELCO specializes in sustainable energy solutions and services in southern, rural India.  DING! DING! DING!  A perfect fit for what we are trying to accomplish!

Nothing is official yet, but SELCO's rough estimate is below the $25,000 originally quoted from a solar contractor in the area.  As we are still a bit short right now on fundraising this would be a Godsend!  They are performing a site visit within the week and will have a proposal shortly after.

Your To-Do List...please

1) PRAY! PRAY! PRAY!
2) Continue spreading the word about our project
3) PRAY! PRAY! PRAY!
4) Speak with your company about donation matching
5) Consider giving to this cause spiritually or financially.  Both are equally important.
6) PRAY! PRAY! PRAY!

Thursday, 29 September 2011

We Can Do It!!!!!

What an exciting month it has been!!  Thank you again to all of you who have given time, prayers, support and money to this project.  I could not have made it without you.  We have a few more days remaining to raise the necessary funds for the solar project. Let's continue the momentum and reach our financial goal!!  Forward this on to colleagues, friends and family and pray, pray, pray!!

Our solar initiative began in 2010 with the addition of basic backup systems at our India and Republic of Chad orphanages. Both orphanages are located in sunshine-abundant regions, making for the perfect conditions to go solar. After a successful test-run of the basic system at our India orphanage, we are preparing for a large expansion sufficient to power the entire orphanage campus. The expansion will cost approximately $25,000 and the estimate from the installer is good through October 1st.

In addition to providing the opportunity to go "off the grid," the system will also allow us to rent out additional power cells (charged car batteries). Members of the community will be able to rent these batteries in order to power lights, fans and small appliances in their homes, thus drastically improving their quality of life. Local businesses will also be able to rent the batteries to run appliances and mobile PA systems. Thus the new system will not only provide all of the orphanage's power needs, but will also create a steady revenue stream from the power cell rentals.
We expect the system to provide a savings of $3,600/year in the elimination of our electric bill. We're conservatively projecting revenue of $1,200/year from the solar-charged power cells rental business and will likely see that figure grow in following years. Thus we foresee the system paying for itself in about 5 years. What's more, with the savings, we should be able to bring in more orphans almost immediately. In other words, this project will have an immediate and long-lasting life-change impact!

ANY AMOUNT you can contribute, however insignificant it may seem, will be multiplied for years to come as we continue to realize the
cost-cutting benefits and reinvest funds back into our microenterprise programs.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

Day 31-32

It is certainly true that you don’t know what you’re missing until its gone??  My tastebuds and cravings were dramatically skewed after the 30-day challenge.  Although I missed my usual food and snacks, I was forced to suppress those cravings and desires. Even thinking about such things would make me want them more.  So, for the first time in a month, I started thinking about food choices on the evening of Day 30.  Lindsay wanted to take me to breakfast on Day 31 which was a wonderful way to commemorate the day.  I decided to take it easy for the first meal.  I ordered scrambled eggs, toast and a decaf latte.  It was all delicious!!!   Although not the most exciting meal, it was a memorable and safe choice.  I was not hungry at all for lunch after the latte and toast, so I had an apple and granola for lunch. 
To top off Day 31, Lindsay made dinner.  This wasn’t just any dinner.  Lindsay, being a quasi-vegetarian, decided to make my favorite meal of all time.  Beef Stoganoff.  For years, the only meat that Lindsay has eat either has had two legs or gills.  So the fact that she called my mom for a recipe and actually made beef was unreal!  Despite my quickly expanding belly, I ate half of the entire casserole dish!  It was THAT good!  Needless to say, I slept extremely well that night.
On Day 32, I felt great and decided to begin testing my stomach.  Cereal for breakfast which wasn’t exactly daring.  But, I had Chicken Pad Thai from a street market for lunch which was unbelievable!!!  Still feeling fine, I decided to go for the gusto and get Sri Lankan take-away for dinner.  The flavors were so intense!  My belly handled it fairly well.  I have already gained back 3-4 pounds, which I assumed would be the case.  My body is soaking up everything I eat.  The plan is to eat fairly healthy and try to keep some of the weight off.  We are in Munich this weekend, so resisting bratwurst and pretzels will be impossible.  Maybe the health plan will start on Tuesday!
Thank you for continuing  to follow my saga.  Be sure to continue telling friends so we can meet our goal.  Only 10 days left to give!!!

Monday, 19 September 2011

Day 30: The Last Supper

All I can say is that God was 100% behind me during this project.  I could sense His presence throughout the 30 day challenge, especially this week.  As I reviewed my rations for the week, I was very doubtful that I would have enough food.  As I prepared my last meal tonight, I poured all of the remaining food into the skillet, and before me was enough food for a decent dinner!  I was amazed.  I never sat down and created a plan for my food, but God obviously did.  I had exactly enough food, down to the grain of rice, to complete my 90th meal.  I was blown away!

What an amazing experience this has been.  I have learned countless lessons about myself and the world in general.  Doubtless to say, I will forever be a changed man because of this challenge and because of the overwhelming support and love from all of you.  You gave encouragement when I was down and celebrated triumphs with me.  I hope you continue to follow me and lend prayers and support as we move closer to funding the project!

Tomorrow, I begin Day 31 with excitement and determination.  I hope that I never forget the lesson of Day 31.  1.1 billion people do not have a Day 31 where they can slip back into comfort.  Some people will wake up tomorrow on Day 10,031 with no hope in sight.  As this challenge ends, let's all make an effort to remember the importance of Day 31 and what that means. I know I will. 

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: One egg w/ hashbrowns: $0.18

Lunch: 1/2 Ramen noodles w/ 1/4 can of vegetable soup and carrot chunk:$0.16

Dinner: Egg-fried rice w/ chickpeas, carrots and potatoes (sandbagged egg from Thurs.): $0.25

Dessert: 8 raisins (What a way to finish!): $0.05


Today's total: $0.64
Today's 'regular' day estimate: $13

After
30 days,
90 meals
27 pounds lost,
over 3,500 pageviews in
24 different countries

the Grand Total saved from this challenge is $710.00 

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Day 29: The Eve of the End

Exactly four weeks ago today, I had my first oatmeal breakfast on the challenge and then went to church.  I vividly remember sitting in the service, stomach already growling, thinking, ''What have I just done?!?''  As I looked ahead to the next 29 days, I thought the challenge was too much for too long.

Fast forward exactly 4 weeks, I am sitting in church this morning, remembering back to that day and the daunting task before me.  I can't believe how fast the past 29 days have flown by.  I know for a fact, I could not have made it without your thoughts, prayers and encouragement and God's amazing grace and mercy.

You may notice that my portions today are smaller than normal.  That's because, preparing 3 square meals today was tough.  And, tomorrow is going to be even tougher.  Knowing that it is my last day will get me through any stronger than normal pangs!

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: One egg w/ potato slices: $0.18

Lunch: Rice w/ carrots, peas and chickpeas: $0.15

Dinner: Spaghetti w/ tomatoes and pinto beans: $0.16

Today's total: $0.49

We usually have lunch out after church on Sunday, so today's 'regular' day estimate is $30.

Grand total saved: $697

Saturday, 17 September 2011

Day 28: The Bigger Picture

Although I am excited and relieved that the challenge is coming to an end, I can't help but feel a little guilty about Day 31 and the resuming my normal life.  I thank God for the blessings He has given a me; Being born into a wonderful Christian home, with amazing parents, in the United States. Receiving a good education.  Marrying an amazing woman, and my best friend.  Having two healthy and intelligent young girls.  God has been so good to me. 

So, I am making a pledge that for the rest of my years, I will ''Speak out for justice! Stand up for the poor and destitute!" (Prov 31:9)  Maybe it's making up for lost time?  Maybe I am finally realizing that individuals CAN make a difference?  I am not saying this project will end world hunger or bring peace on Earth, but maybe it's a small piece in an enormous puzzle that we must complete.  I pray that you will find your piece.

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: Egg, potato and rice casserole: $0.16

Lunch: 1/2 Ramen w/ pinto beans: $0.15

Snack: Rice, chickpeas and tomatoes: $0.10

Dinner: Spaghetti w/ chickpeas, carrots and tomatoes: $0.18

Snack: Jello!  $0.08

Today's total: $0.67

Fall has begun, so we would be out and about enjoying the weather today.  Lunch and dinner would have been out, especially with a friend in town.  'Regular' day estimate: $45

Grand total saved: $667

Friday, 16 September 2011

Day 27: Final Jello Friday!

Wow!  It is so hard to believe that I am entering the final weekend of this challenge.  Day 1 seems like 3 years ago, yet Day 27 has come so quickly!  I am glad that only three days remain, because my rations were looking pretty slim today. 

I have been looking forward to Jello since last Saturday!  It is amazing how much joy one tiny packet of flavored chemicals can bring.  Being the only sweet thing I get to eat all week makes this moment worth the wait. (kind of).  Another reason I am so thankful for something sweet to eat is because our good friend Sabine has arrived for a weekend visit.  Sabine lives in Singapore, but made her way to London via France where she picked up some tasty French treats for us!  Thank you Sabine for torturing me!  kidding. I can't think of a better way to celebrate this challenge than with a Godiva breakfast feast on Tuesday morning. Again, I kid.

Remember that this project does not end with my 30-day challenge.  We have made great progress on the solar specs and should have final plans delivered soon.  I will continue updating the blog with new developments and hopefully first hand accounts of installation in India!!!  So, stayed tuned....

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: One scrambled egg w/ rice and hash browns: $0.22

Lunch: Spaghetti w/ chickpeas and chopped tomatoes: $0.20

Snack: Rice w/ pinto beans: $0.08

Dinner: Rice w/ chickpeas and kidney beans (end of kidney beans): $0.13

Snack: half portion of Jello (saving the rest to enjoy during the Baylor game tomorrow!!) 

Today's total: $0.63

With a friend in town on a Friday night, we would have definitely gone out to dinner.  Today's 'regular' day estimate: $40

Grand total saved: $622

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Day 26: Amazing News Coverage

The only way I have survived this challenge is through the support and encouragement from people all over the world.  I have received messages from Malaysia, Taiwan, India, Brazil, just to name a few.  Accoording to the map in the bottom right of this blog, almost 900 different people have read the blog from 24 different countries!!  I am completely humbled to know that so many people may have been inspired by this project.

We have been blessed to be in 4 printed newspapers and at least 15 different websites.  I have listed some of them below.  Thank you again to everyone who played a part in spreading the word about this crucial project.

http://www.baptiststandard.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=12943&Itemid=53

http://www.pagalguy.com/2011/09/uk-based-mba-students-novel-b-school-project-live-on-less-than-a-dollar-a-day-and-bring-power-to-an-indian-orphanage/ (India)

http://news.dhf.org.tw/News.aspx?cate=02&key=1325 (Taiwan)

http://www.odiario.com/blogs/inforgospel/2011/09/05/jovem-cristao-para-ajudar-criancas-vive-com-um-dolar-por-dia-confira/ (Brazil)

http://www.abpnews.com/content/view/6692/53/
http://worldoncampus.com/article/social_impact/2011/09/living_on_1_a_day
http://www.christiannewswire.com/news/4925817666.html
http://baylorlariat.com/2011/09/14/8532/

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ raisins: $0.13 (last of the oatmeal...)

Lunch: Spaghetti w/ rice, kidney beans and 1/4 can vegetable soup: $0.18

Snack: 1/2 Curry-flavored Ramen w/ rice and kidney beans: $0.15

Dinner: Egg-fried rice w/ carrots, peas and half potato: $0.28

Today's Total: $0.74

It was a gorgeous day in Londontown today, so lunch on a patio somewhere would have been required.  Today's 'regular' day estimate: $23

Grand Total for the orphanage: $582 

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Day 25: Fatigue sets in

I'm not sure if it staying up later to work on the project, or if 25 days of fewer calories is taking its toll, but I have been extremely tired the past few days.  My spirits remain high due to the overwhelming support and encouragement from all of you, but I am physically drained at the moment.  The end is in sight, so that is helpful to know.  Please do not be alarmed, millions live on far less.

Much progress has been made on the solar project this week.  We are moving closer and closer towards design completion.  We have come a long way with our fundraising goal, but still have a ways to go.  I can not explain how thankful I am to those of you who have given or made pledges.  I am confident that we will succeed with your help.

Today's menu:

Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ raisins: $0.13

Lunch: 1/2 Ramen w/ rice and half potato: $0.20

Dinner: Spaghetti w/ rice, kidney beans and chopped tomatoes: $0.17

Today's total: $0.50

The family went out for dinner tonight.  I had a few spoonfuls of rice and 3 glasses of water before heading out and watching the gals enjoy a tasty dinner. So, my 'regular' day estimate is $25.

Grand total saved for the project: $559

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Day 24: Motivation for the Homestretch

I can not believe how fast this month has flown-by!  Although not the most tangibly pleasant month of my life, the intangible lessons I've learned will be with me forever.  It has also been so great to feel and see the support from such wonderful family and friends.  You have no idea how much your support means to me. 

I took some time to, once again, bring myself back to the reason I am participating in this challenge. 
With your help, I will be able to help Peace Gospel International which exists to empower native missions in Asia and Africa through micro-enterprise. Their native teams in India, Myanmar, Nepal, The Philippines, Uganda and Chad multiply your donations through microeconomic efforts involving dairy production, animal stockbreeding, AND NOW A SOLAR POWER RENTAL BUSINESS allowing them to...

 • operate 9 orphanages in 6 nations, caring for 250+ orphans
 • train 30+ widowed/destitute women in small business each month
 • educate & feed over 60 children from destitute/slum homes each month
 • provide Vacation Bible School & hot meals for 400+ children each month
 • combat frequent power outages at our project locations with solar initiatives
 • provide full time jobs for over 40 native staff members
 • multiply this work through church planting and training

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ raisins: $0.13

Lunch: Rice, kidney beans, peas: $0.15

Snack: Rice, kidney beans and half potato: $0.14

Dinner: Veggie burger on a bed of egg-fried rice w/ peas and carrots (sounds fancy, right?): $0.30

Today's total: $0.72

I ran to Whole Foods today to pick up some baby items, so I would have most likely had lunch as well.  Today's 'regular' day estimate: $23

Grand total saved: $534

Monday, 12 September 2011

Day 23: One Week Countdown Begins!

After a challenging and inspiring 3 weeks, tomorrow morning is the beginning of the homestretch...  Let's keep the momentum rolling and finish strong!  Please continue telling friends and coworkers about the challenge, project and financial goal.  We can do it! 

I took a quick review of my remaining rations tonight after dinner.  I have plenty of rice, but my other food is starting to run low.  Strategy will be key this week. 

Remaining Food for 7 days

I was determined to get creative for dinner, so I thought up a Veggie burger patty.  It turned out really well!  Mashed pinto beans, then added 1/2 chopped carrot, chopped tomatoes, rice.  Then rolled in oatmeal to keep it together.  Fried in lard and added an egg on top.  Not too shabby!  Don't get me wrong, a 1/2 pound burger with fries and a shake would have also hit the spot!

Today's Menu:

Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ raisins: $0.13

Lunch: 1/3 can of vegetable soup w/ pinto and kidney beans: $0.19 

Snack: Pinto beans w/ 1/2 carrot: $0.10



Dinner: Veggie burger topped with fried egg: $0.25

Today's Total: $0.67

I probably would have eaten a sandwich at home for lunch, so 'regular' day estimate: $15

Grand Total saved: $511

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Day 22: Day of Remembrance

On a day of remembrance, like today, I am reminded again about the sanctity and fragility of life.  And, while we are on this earth, how important it is for us to love our neighbors and fight for the defenseless. 
I feel this project embodies both of these ideas.  Even though the orphanage in India is thousands of miles away, we can all do our part to love our earthly neighbors and protect and lift up the forgotten and indigent. 

After attending church and watching various memorials in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington DC, we decided to enjoy the beautiful weather and attend the Mayor's Thames Festival in London.  The festival is a huge multi-cultural celebration with parades, fireworks and food!!!  I knew the plethora of food stalls would be a huge temptation, but the girls and Lindsay really enjoyed the day out.  We had a great time and saw some fantastic entertainment.  My tummy was growling loudly after carrying Emerson on my shoulders all night and walking 3-4 miles.  So, I ended the day with a late-night snack of rice and beans.  mmmmmm.

Today's Menu:
Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ pureed raisins: $0.13

Lunch: Rice, kidney and pinto beans and green peas: $0.17

Dinner: Egg-fried spaghetti w/ kidney beans and tomatoes: $0.22

Snack: Rice, kidney beans and tomatoes: $0.08 

Today's total: $0.60

We usually go out to eat after church, and I would have definitely taken part in the delicious-looking food at the festival.  Today's 'regular' day estimate: $35

Grand Total saved for the orphanage: $496

Saturday, 10 September 2011

Day 21: Participation Week is Complete!

If you are finishing off your last day of Participation Week, well done!  and THANK YOU!!  This week would have been especially long and difficult if it wasn't for your support and commitment.  I hope that you have all gained something from the experience.  Maybe your jeans are a bit looser.  Your wallet a bit fuller.  Or, you may just have a better understanding of sacrifice and empathy.  Which ever is your case, you have made a difference!

If you were unable to participate this week, please feel encouraged to commit on your own and challenge yourself this week.  You will not regret it, I promise.

Again, it has been wonderful sharing this week with Lindsay.  She did an amazing job!  I know she has learned many lessons, but is also excited to have a aromatic, delicious latte tomorrow morning! 

I am about to head into the 4th and final week.  Tonight, I have cooked the last of my pinto and kidney beans.  This should get through until next weekend, at least.

A reporter from an MBA website in India wrote an article about the project and the blog traffic has skyrocketed!  It is great having so much attention being focused on the solar initiative and orphanage.  The more people know, the faster we can get to work!  So, thank you Lajwanti!  The article can be seen here: http://tiny.cc/efu9c

Today's Menu:
Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ raisins: $0.13 (shocker)
(Lindsay: One scrambled egg with rice: $0.18)

Lunch: 1/2 Ramen noodles w/ chopped tomatoes and rice: $0.18
(Lindsay: Spaghetti w/ half can cream of chicken soup: $0.22

Snack: Leftover spaghetti w/ tomatoes: $0.10
(Lindsay: Toast w/ peanut butter: $0.20)

Dinner: Egg-fried rice w/ carrots, peas and potatoes: $0.28
(Lindsay: Rice, potatoes and chopped tomatoes: $0.12)

Today's total: $0.69
(Lindsay: $0.72)

We tend to eat out lunch and dinner on Saturdays if we're out-and-about.  So, today's 'regular' day estimate is $48 (Lindsay: $40)

Grand total saved: $461
(Lindsay saved a total of $171 for the week and will graciously be donating this amount towards the orphanage solar micro-enterprise project.  Thank you, Lindsay!)

Friday, 9 September 2011

Day 20: Jello Friday

Nowadays, it is the small things in life that get me excited...  I went about my day as any other on this challenge, when around 3PM I suddenly realized that it was Friday.  And, we all know what happens on Friday!!  Jello time!!!  I was honestly like a kid on Christmas morning.  This week seems especially long and monotonous, so this is exactly what I needed.  As we speak, a 1/2 portion of coagulated strawberry goodness is waiting for me.  I'm waiting until my tastebuds flatline before devouring!

This week I had the opportunity to participate in three seperate interviews for the project.  I feel so humbled and blessed that the word is spreading.  According to the fundraiser thermometer, we need to shout it from the mountaintop this week!  I can use your help to spread the word as well.  And, remind people to take their employers up on contribution matching, if they feel inclined to give.

Lindsay finishes up her Participation Week tomorrow.  It has been wonderful being able to share this experience with her.  Our daughter is thoroughly confused as to why mommy and daddy only eat rice and noodles at every meal.  My hope is that Emerson can take something from this as well, and realize how fortunate she is.

Today's Menu:
Breakfast: Oatmeal w/ raisins: $0.13
(Lindsay: Toast w/ peanut butter: $0.20)

Lunch: 1/2 Ramen noodles, rice and chickpeas: $0.18
(Lindsay: 1/2 potato, rice and kidney beans: $0.15)

Snack: Rice and chopped tomatoes: $0.08

Dinner: Potato, rice, chickpeas, chopped tomatoes and 1 egg: $0.33)
(Lindsay: Spaghetti w/ chopped tomatoes: $0.12)

Snack: Jello: $0.09

Today Total: $0.81
(Lindsay: $0.47)

We usually go out for dinner on the weekend, so today's 'regular' day estimate is $40 (Lindsay: $30)

Total going towards the project: $413
(Lindsay: $131)