3 AM Thoughts: 65 Million Dollars


There’s some talk of Jesus and serving others in here, so you’ve been forewarned.



On Friday, news outlets were reporting about Creflo Dollar, an Atlanta pastor of a megachurch, starting a crowdfunding campaign for 65 million dollars.

What’s the money for?

A state of the art, luxury, personal jet to use in reaching lost souls for Jesus.



It pissed off enough people to cause an online uproar which resulted in Pastor Dollar’s plane fund page being pulled. That’s a shame because I had a moment of brilliance:

He should continue the crowdfunding, but not for the fancy-shmancy flying machine. I thought up of a few ways the 65 million dollars could be spent that would actually, you know, display the love of Christ. If someone could pass the link to this page to Pastor Dollar, maybe it could become a reality.

Don’t laugh. It might happen.

Anyway, on to some of my radical ideas.

Sponsor Kids in Poverty

It’s staggering to realize how many children are living in abject poverty in this world. Millions of little ones around the planet die of preventable illnesses and malnutrition. Then there’s the expense of school that makes it impossible for impoverished children to receive an education. I sponsor a girl from Colombia through Compassion for $38 a month, which helps pay for her schooling, medical care, and nutrition. What kind of impact would 65 million dollars have if used to sponsor children in dire circumstances?
The youngest child I saw on the website that needed sponsorship was just a year old. Depending on the program the child is involved in, sponsorship could last up until the 22nd birthday. For the sake of this example, 65 million dollars could sponsor roughly 6,479 children from the age of one until the age of twenty-two. That’s almost 6,479 kids that would given the chance to flourish beyond their difficult situations.

Heal a Child

I heard about Cure International a few years ago during a drive to raise money for cleft lip and palate surgery for a fifteen year girl in Afghanistan. She was seen as a monster in her village and rarely left her house. She didn’t have the opportunity for schooling and no prospect of having her own family. That changed when she got the surgery that not only repaired her external deformity, but brought the light back into her eyes and hope in her life.

That’s what Cure does.

When parents are told their kids are curses or monsters because of hydrocephalus, clubfoot, or other medical problems, the people at Cure Hospitals tell them that Jesus loves them and their children, and the doctors heal these little ones in the operating rooms. They perform all sorts of surgeries, but let’s stick with cleft lip and palate surgeries. Those operations average about $1,000. 65,000 children could have this surgery done with a 65 million dollar donation. 65,000 children wouldn’t have to endure being shunned and called monster.

That’s a worthwhile investment.

Give Clean Water

In ten years, Blood:Water Mission has brought clean water to one million people in Africa. They want to make this happen for another million, but within three years. A twenty dollar donation means clean water access for a person. With 65 million dollars, 3,250,000 people would get clean water access. If all of Pastor Creflo’s donors got together to donate, Blood:Water could exceed their goals and millions would have safe drinking water.

Buy a Coat for a Youngling

Imagine being ten years old, waiting for a school bus, in the middle of a frigid winter morning. Now imagine having to wear a too-small coat or no coat because your parents had to decide between getting you a new coat or paying for groceries. I’m from the Midwest and I can’t even fathom braving the harsh winters without a warm coat. Yet, many children deal with this scenario and many miss school during the winter because it’s too cold to venture out without the right outerwear. Operation Warm gives brand new coats to children, who desperately need them, all over the country. For ten dollars a month for a year, six children can get brand new winter coats. 65 million dollars means 6,500,000 children would get brand new coats to keep them warm during the winter and help reduce school absences.

Pastor Dollar, if you’re reading, I hope you take these ideas into consideration. Rather than buy a sleek piece of metal you’ll eventually replace (again) to go tell people that God loves them, invest the 65 million dollars you’re seeking to tangibly help people who can’t give you anything in return. It’s what God expects you to do: be the hands and feet of Christ to the least of these.

And you are not too good to fly commercial.


Please vote for me!



Hello all who might be reading this! This won’t be a regular post, though I have one planned soon. I entered a contest being sponsored by Loot Crate and Munny, and I really would like to win. I can’t draw very well, so I decorated my entry with clothes I crocheted and knitted.

I even crocheted the little balloon.

There a few prizes, but I really want to bag the prize for the category I’m in (Most Fashionable) and win a dress form. So if you can could find it in your lovely hearts to vote for me, I’d appreciate it! Click here for my entry.

Thank you so much!

Blemished Queen



(Yes, I haven’t done anything with this blog since last fall. Sorry. I’ll try to be a little more consistent, but I can’t promise anything.)

Confession time: I’m not really into Beyoncé.

“Single Ladies” is pretty catchy, but I’m mostly ambivalent about Queen Bey and her music. That said, it was interesting watching Beyoncé’s fans lose their collective minds over untouched photos of the artist being leaked to the world. Of course, there was plenty of vitriol for the individuals who posted the offending pictures. They tweeted their indignations, some even declaring the photos were actually Photoshopped to make Beyoncé look awful.


If you haven’t seen the photos and don’t feel like Googling them, I’ll save you the search. Beyoncé looked like a gorgeous 30-something mom with a little acne, uneven skin, and smile lines. She looked, you know, like a human.

First, I think it sucks that these photos were leaked. These were done for a L’Oréal ad campaign and never meant to be seen by the public as is. Unfortunately, it’s getting easier for things like unflattering pictures to be made public and that won’t be stopping in the foreseeable future. At the same time, maybe it isn’t a terrible thing that her rabid fanbase was reminded that Beyoncé isn’t a flawless-skinned epitome of perfection; she doesn’t wake up with static-free hair and breath that smells like roses.

Surprise! She’s made of flesh and blood!

Yes, she’s uber talented, beautiful, and fabulously wealthy, but she has to put on her bodysuit one leg at a time, like the rest of us.

It’s easy to dismiss Beyoncé’s fans for their undying, blind loyalty (like when one fan defaced Beck’s Wikipedia page after he beat out Beyoncé for Best Album of the Year at the Grammys), but I think it’s a sign of something deeper.

I believe everyone has the capability to worship and we all worship at an altar.

It can be the altar of money, an ideal, a celebrity, or whatever else we humans can think of. When we put all of our adoration on something or someone, it becomes our standard for perfection. But what if it’s proven to not be perfect? What if our object of worship is revealed to have blemishes? Rather than deal with the possibility that our idol is faulty, we lash out at those who would dare tarnish our god’s honor.

Maybe I’m reading too much into it. Maybe Beyoncé’s fans were just upset that her privacy was violated.

Or maybe they were upset that their queen was revealed to be a mortal, like the rest of us.

Recital Corner: Prodigal Yet


A few nights ago, while listening to the radio, I heard the radio show host read a poem titled “Prodigal Yet” by a Canadian poet named Ethelwyn Wetherald. I must admit, I haven’t been able to shake off the words of this piece.

If the title hasn’t given it away, it deals with the parable of the Prodigal Son that Jesus told. The reason why this poem stuck with me is because, though the son returns to his father’s loving embrace, he still longs for his pitiful and “freedom-filled” days tending swine. I’ll admit, for someone who has gone through her own prodigal story, this poem hits very close to home.

NaNoWriMo 2014: Part Two


It’s the last weekend before the start of NaNoWriMo and I’m officially jittery from the excitement.

Here’s the thing: I’ve hardly done any planning. This is highly unlike me.

If you’re unaware, the NaNoWriMo camp generally falls under three camps: planner, pantser, and plantster.

“What in the heck does it all mean?” I’m sure some of you are asking, with a wide-eyed look in your innocent eyes. Let me explain.

Planner: a person who not only has a plot down, but has outlines, character profiles, hand drawn maps of their novel’s setting, novel covers, etc. This person knows how their novel will start, finish, and everything else in between.

Pantser: a person who “flies by the seat of his or her pants” in terms of writing a novel. This individual has done minimal or no planning, and each writing session is filled with surprises.

Plantser: The category I typically fall under. This involves doing some planning, but not going overboard with it. Also, it helps that if you’re not married to the bit you’ve planned. I’ve discovered that direction can be good, but you never know when your characters can lay waste to some of your outlines.

In my NaNo novel from last year, my main character was a teenage boy in present time who. unknowingly, came from another realm. I planned for him to be this tough guy descended from a line of kings, ready to fight to take back his birthright. Instead, he became a misfit who had to learn to fight and adjust to his new found identity. Don’t be afraid if your plans veer off track. It often turns out better than one would think.

My plan for the next few days is to re-read No Plot? No Problem? by Chris Baty, get my Pinterest board set up for my characters, and get some index cards to do some outlining. I also have to stock up on writer fuel (read: Halloween candy, caffeinated beverages, and pretzels). Plus, I’m participating in a couple of NaNo swaps, so I have to get those packages sent off by at least next Saturday so I don’t have to stress.

I honestly can’t believe this is my ninth NaNoWriMo and I’m subjecting myself to this torment once again.

It’s like Christmas!


NaNoWriMo 2014


NaNoWriMo is starting in about three weeks, and I can’t wait!

For those of you who have no clue what I’m speaking of, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, and the goal is to write 50,000+ words of an original novel in 30 days. It can be soul-crushing as you attempt to write at a break-neck speed.

This is my idea of fun. Seriously, this thing is like Christmas for me.

This will my ninth NaNoWriMo, which I can’t believe, and I already have a plot! It’s going to be a sci-fi/children’s story, but I still need to work out the murkiness of the whole thing. It’ll be interesting since I’ve never written anything that would be considered a children’s novel, but I think I’m up for the challenge.

I’ve decided I’m NOT going to post up excerpts of the novel during NaNoWriMo because I’ll start self-editing and I’ll totally never get anything done that way. However, I think I’m going to record and post a weekly video update. I’m sure it’ll be great! You’ll witness as I’ll go from chipper and optimistic during week one, descend to despondency and misery during week two, to not hating my novel during week three. Week four tends to culminate with tears and over-caffeinated exhaustion. Maybe a little confetti. We’ll see.

Did I already tell you I’m looking forward to all of this?

If any of you lovely souls want to leap into the great unknown that’s NaNoWriMo, click here.

And if you want to have an idea of what the month-long writing process is like, here’s a video by the lovely Kristina Horner .

Recital Corner: Hips


I know. It’s been awhile since I’ve done this. Shame on me…


Does anyone remember reading The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros? I can’t remember if I read it for high school, but I’m certain I read it for my “Chicago Latino Writers” class in college. If you haven’t read it, the book is made up of vignettes told from the point of view of Esperanza, a young teen girl living in Chicago. The book is quick to read and is more than just a book for young adults. The following is one of my favorite pieces from the book.