When Kindergarten let out for the summer of 2012, Brogan announced that she was going to be “the BEST reader in the 1st Grade”. She decided she would read 50 books before the end of summer (actually, she has just changed this date to July 25 – I don’t know why, she picked the date herself J ). As incentive to help her reach her goal, Marty and I offered her $0.25 for every book she read. So we began frequenting the library as often as we could and she read. And read some more. And is still reading. With these last library books at home, she will have read 27 books as of this week- leaving only 23 books to read in 4 weeks). This does NOT include the books she reads at her summer care facility – these are only the books we personally have witnessed her reading. She loves to read, but even more than that – she loves to give.
At 6 years old, she has a bigger heart than most adults I know. She was blessed with a giving, compassionate spirit. She has a heart for others and is super excited about our upcoming adoption. She and Swaid have been involved in the adoption plan from the very beginning. We don’t hold anything back – they understand that some kids don’t have parents and WHY some kids don’t have parents. We speak to them about it in truth and in love. Swaid is only 3, but he seems to grasp the general concept. Brogan has always been very wise – much too wise for a child J She understands what it means to be an orphan and although she still has some “6 year old ideas” about certain things, she wants to help these kids.
On the evening of Sunday, June 24, 2012, we handed Brogan and Swaid their weekly allowances. We asked them what they’d planned on doing with their hard-earned money and Brogan told us she wanted to use all of her allowance, as well as, her “book money” to buy things to send to some kids in Africa. Specifically, to the orphanages we visited and to one very special place where a VERY special 2 year old little boy named “L” lives. We talked about certain things they needed such as baby wipes, over-the-counter children medications, dental supplies, water purification tablets, vitamins, hard candy, etc. She recently went to the dentist and this was on her mind so she decided to send them all toothbrushes, toothpaste, and flossers – kid LOVES to floss, yall. She then asked us how she could earn even more money and after much discussion, she ultimately decided to just read more books at $0.25 a piece.
You guys, my heart exploded. Our daughter just told us she was going to spend her money on dental supplies for kids in 3rd world country orphanages! I wish I could say that her response surprised me, but honestly? This is the kid that when given the choice of buying 2 presents at the dollar store, will ALWAYS choose to buy one for her brother. This is the kid that routinely gives up her seat to her brother because she knows it will make him happy – without being asked to do so. This is the kid that once bought a present for the bully at school because she didn’t believe he had been given presents before. This is the kid that wishes upon stars every night for every child in the world to have a home. This is the kid that blew out her 6th birthday candles and wished for $100 so she could buy orphans candy and toys. This is the kid that prays at night and asks God to make her “a better person”. She may have just turned 6 in May 2012, but she is more mature than a lot of adults I know.
Naturally, I did what any proud parent would do in this type of situation: I took it to Facebook. Within minutes and without solicitation, we started receiving matches for every book she reads. As of today, she’s up to $5.50 per book and has received dental supply donations from Germany Family Dental in Brandon, as well as, Tony Lee, DMD in Florida! If she meets her goal of 50 books by July 25, then she will have earned $275 & dental supplies for some very special kids across the world. Not only that, but by sharing her idea, she has inspired kids as far away as California to host their own Read-A-Thons to help in their family's own adoption fundraising!
We are so proud of our kids. Our children are incredible and we give ALL glory and thanks to their Maker for entrusting them to us!
15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”