Our updates are on FACEBOOK now!

Gifts on a Mission will now be posting our updates on Facebook. Please check there and become a "fan" of our page in order to receive the latest updates on our new products and our home for children in Kenya, House of Hope.

Thanks so much for checking us out!


New Products, Upcoming Shows & FREE SHIPPING!

The infamous "container" finally arrived! I saw on the BBC website where they are following a container around the world. I feel like that's what I've been doing for the last several months! Our products started in Kenya, many of them from the northern most desert area, to the bustling city of Nairobi; to the port at Mombasa; to Salalah, Oman; through the Suez Canal; across the Atlantic, to Charleston; then taken off of the ship and put on a semi-truck;to Atlanta for U.S. Customs inspections; and finally to my drop-off point. Just know when you buy these products or give them as a gift, they have a story to tell, for many reasons!

I know everyone is pinching their pennies these days, so we are offering FREE SHIPPING during the holidays! Check out the website to see products.

Or, click here to see a list of the SHOWS where we are displaying, including my open house all next week. I want to make it easy on you to see these products in person if you are in Atlanta.

Newest, handmade nativity scenes - amazing detail!

Will trade rum cakes for donations!

Many of you know, I have baked goodies for the last three holiday seasons to raise money for this ministry. Although I had many takers and much good feedback, it involved so much time and I didnt really make a whole lot more than I spent for the ingredients. So, no huge baking campaign this year.

But, I have had many requests - might I say humbly, much begging and pleading - to make my rum cakes. So, I'm making this offer...

make a $100 donation or more to House of Hope
before December 19th and I will deliver
the most scrumptious rum cake to you

As with all donations, there are no administrative expenses so 100% will go towards House of Hope, and of course it is tax deductible.

Click here to donate, then email me to request your rum cake.


House of Hope Opens!

I am so happy to tell you that the House of Hope in Lodwar, Kenya opened a couple of months ago with our first 15 children!

A little background...most of you know, I partnered with SERV Ministries International out of Woodstock, Georgia in the mission of creating the House of Hope. SERV was going to this drought-ridden area with relief food for the people suffering there. At the same time, I was going to help the women who make beautiful baskets. Together, we partnered with SHARE International, a Kenyan group based in Lodwar. Their leader, John Nakara, grew up as an orphan there and always had a vision to help other orphaned children. For the last year, we have been looking for a proper site and making plans for construction.

But, thank goodness, God had other plans and in April SERV found a boarding school that had been in use only one year and the owner wanted to sell. It gave us the ability to start the home right away! Many of you know I have been visiting the children that would be helped by the home over the last year. It is so good to see the children out of some of the situations they were in and happy and thriving in this home.

I made another trip to Lodwar in September after the kids and staff had been in place for about 3 weeks. Here are a few pics from that trip.

Click on the picture to go to Picasa and view as a slideshow.
(Thanks to my friend in Kenya, Laura Dickerson for some of these pics.)

Below is an aerial shot of the House of Hope.
It is set in the middle of 34 acres.

I went up to Lodwar from Nairobi on this last trip with two of my friends who are both missionaries living in Kenya. They are also both nurses and used their expertise to train the new staff in several different areas. In order to allow the teacher, Agnes, to be a part of the staff training, I took the children during their school hours. Wow! I have a whole new appreciation for Agnes and all teachers! Of course the children didn't speak English so that complicated things. Many of the children have never been in school so we worked on the basics: ABC's and numbers, 1 to 20. And, I'm pretty sure they learned at least two words in English, "sit down!"

When you have children's lives in your hands, it is a good idea to grow slowly and that is our plan. There are so many orphaned children in the Turkana area, that it is tempting to add more to the home - and fast. But it is important to do things right. With the existing structures, the home can handle between 50-60 children and there is plenty of room to build more over the coming years.
For now, the goal is to continue raising donations for the following:
- remaining installments for the purchase of the property
- daily expenses of food, staff pay, etc.
- short term needs including clothes, electricity, repairs to the property, etc.
- long term needs including a water bore hole, worship center, secondary school education, etc.

I know this is a tough time for so many, but if you would like to be a part of helping children who would not otherwise have a chance, this could be very rewarding for you. Your donation is made directly to SERV and they have NO administrative fees - 100% of your donation goes directly to the fund for the orphanage. Your donation is completely tax deductible. Click here to go to my website to donate.

Thank you for your support and prayers for these children!


This has been a crazy nine months of 2008 as I continue to get Gifts on a Mission up and running! So much so, that I haven't kept the updates coming and I apologize for that. Now I have lots of news! I'll try to break it up over the new few days but here are the highlights:

WEBSITE ORDERING: Finally, after months of tedious work, the website is ready for ordering. It is certainly a work-in-progress but it is ready! You can order now, although I will welcome orders even more in a couple of weeks when my very overdue container arrives. I'll send another email at that time.

NEW CONTAINER COMING: 45 days has turned into 4 months so I can say, for certain, that container shipping across is the world is never boring! We expect the container in a few days and will be adding new products to the website then.

UPCOMING HOLIDAY SHOWS: Gifts on a Mission will be displaying at several holiday shows. Click here for all the details. Remember, many of the products are only made in small quantities so I always have things at the shows that aren't on the website. Also, if you have any ideas, I am available to have a show or talk about House of Hope and Kenya at any home, office, event, etc.

HOUSE OF HOPE OPEN: This is the most exciting news of all and such a blessing! I just got back a couple of weeks ago from my 3rd trip to Kenya this year. I was able to visit the 11 children of the House of Hope home for children that we just opened. I've got great photos of the kids and will be sending the entire story to you in the next couple of days.

Unfortunately, one bit of bad news: Last week I got very sudden news that the McDonough Street Market closed. As you may remember, this is the market in Decatur that I moved into back in May, along with 10 other artists and vendors, and it has been very successful. We were all so excited about the possibilities. It was the perfect spot for me because it allowed me to have a small space that was permanent. Though this closing has been a very frustrating and disappointing experience, I truly believe another opportunity like this will open and I'm already looking into other possibilities.

As always, thank you so much for your support of this mission! The two purposes of this ministry are to give opportunity to artists in developing countries and to support children in those countries. Your purchases push forward the first purpose and your donations have made the second purpose possible. Thank you so much! Blessings,


Gifts on a Mission displaying at fun market!

"I Am Handmade" Craft Market Event - April 19th, 20th
at Irwin Street Market in Old Fourth Ward

This is going to be really fun and I am happy to be a part of it! Irwin Street Market is sort of a co-op for hand-crafted items, all together in the building that houses Jake's Ice Cream in the revitalized Old Fourth Ward. During this weekend, the market will expand to include several artists that aren't a part of the everyday market. The event is sponsored by The Piedmont Review and will include music, food and fun. It's being called "an outdoor craft fair catering to the eclectic and funky tastes of people who love that original and handcrafted feel." I hope you can stop by!

Saturday 4/19 10-6
Sunday 4/20 10-6

For directions:

Info about some of the artists:


Just a few of the beautiful pieces the Kenyan artists have been working on...come see more at the two markets listed below and listen for news on ordering on the website very soon!