Monday, December 19, 2016

Thank you from Promise Home

As 2016 comes to a close, our family at Promise Home would like to thank each and every one of you for your constant support over the years. Please enjoy this small message from them.

Happiest of Holidays to all and may you have a prosperous and blessed new year.


Tuesday, December 13, 2016

2016- In Review

Wow! I can't believe that 2016 is coming to a close and the year is almost over. Charities Within Reach and Promise Home have had a wonderful year thanks to our many generous friends and donors. The children are doing so well and are thriving in their schools and their home.  We could not be any happier.

2016 began with a visit from several members of Charities Within Reach where they encountered some of the coldest weather the Chiang Rai area has ever had. It was even colder than my first December in the area and that was certainly very, very cold. Imagine if you will concrete houses with no insulation, tile floors and no heat. That is what you will find in Chiang Rai. Most hill- tribe people don't even have the luxury of the concrete building. They have wood or thatched houses so they are really in peril with the cold weather. The group arrived and found that some of kids did not have a warm enough jacket so they all went shopping for coats, hats and mittens. Our group ended up buying "fuzzy" pjs and they adopted the Thai way and wore them during the day. It was very cold for the first few days of the trip. Fortunately for them, it warmed up and the trip ended on a good note.

February of 2016 was the 9th grade continuation of our two oldest girls Palita and Nittaya. I had the honor and joy of being able to make a surprise visit to be there for this very important day in their lives. To think that three short years ago these two girls were unsure if they would continue on to high school after finishing primary school and now they are talking about attending university after high school. All of us at Charities Within Reach are so proud of them.

In June, Charities Within Reach held their first ever Peace Meal dinner to raise funds for the home. This is a lovely evening with friends where everyone comes with a dish to share and they enjoy the company of others and learn more about our projects. We asked for a donation of what it would cost the individual or couple to go out for a nice dinner and drinks. It was such a wonderfully successful event and we were able to raise enough money to operate Promise Home and our other projects for over six months. We will have another one next summer so look for information on that.

In late June, another group which included several young ladies made another trip to Chiang Rai. The girls spent their time with the kids playing games, football (soccer) and other activities with the children at Promise Home. It was so wonderful to see the girls form an immediate bond with the our kids at Promise Home.

I visited the home again in October for a check in visit. I simply enjoyed a restful time with the children catching up on their lives and activities. They were just completing their first semester at school and were getting ready for their school holidays. August is Mother's Day in Thailand and the family honored me while I was there with a Mother's Day celebration.

Charities Within Reach just completed their second fundraiser for the year, our annual Thailand sale. Each time a group or individual travels to Thailand we purchase items from the local women and sellers at the markets and bring those items back here to sell. We are so proud that we can help the local village women and others in Thailand while being able to bring fun things back for people to buy. We hold it in December as people come to buy their Christmas gifts for friends and family. It is a fun event and we were able to raise enough to operate Promise Home for the remaining six months of the year.

Our children are thriving because of the love they receive from the house parents and those who give generously so we can provide them a stable home and environment. We look forward to many more great things in 2017. I hope you enjoy this update on Promise Home and the children.

Palita- She is in the 9th grade, loves to draw and sleep. Wants to study for an undergraduate degree. Not sure what in though

Nittaya- Also in the 9th grade. She loves to sing and paint. Wants to go on to University and become a lawyer

Nom- She is in the 6th grade, loves to play basketball and wants to be an airline attendant 

Tin- He is in the 5th grade. He loves to play football, riding his bicycle and playing. He wants to be a professional football (soccer) player when he grows up 

Big and Fon- the house parents of Promise Home 

Yim- She is in pre-kindergarten. She is happy to go to school and play Barbie 
Teerladet- He is in the 5th grade as well. He loves playing football (soccer) with Tin and wants to be a professional football player when he grows up. 

Wandee- She is in the second grade and likes to ride bicycles and playing Barbie with Yim. She would like to be a policewoman when she grows up

Ahmorntep. He is in second grade and loves to ride his bicycle and play football (soccer). He wants to be a professional football player and a policeman when he grows up

We all wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Kwanza and Holiday Season. Have a wonderful New Year and thanks for always following along and giving so generously.

Till next time...

God Bless,

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Simple Joy

In today's world of hateful politics, racial tensions, angry words, and so little care and concern for others I find I need a time and place to go to restore my belief that there is still joy to be found in this world.

I find that joy every time I come to Thailand to spend time with the children and family at Promise Home. Although we cannot talk to each other for long, we know and are blessed with the language of love. Their unconditional love for me is everywhere and I hope they feel my love for them.

One of my favorite things is to treat the children and family to things they rarely if ever get to experience in every day life. Things such as ice cream, movies and going out to dinner is considered a luxury for them so they don't ever go out. Each time I come we go to somewhere special. Most times I leave the choice to them and tonight was no different.

Our special treat this evening was KFC. Not many would consider KFC as a place for a special treat but the children loved it. What a joy it was to see them eat as much chicken, french fries and drink as much Pepsi as they wanted.

Their joy in this simple meal and the simplicity of their lives, without complaint refreshes and inspires my soul. It is my wish that everyone could experience this love and joy and I hope that I have been able to share just a small bit of it with you.

Till next time...

God Bless,

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Arrived at Promise Home


Made it safely to Chiang Rai on Saturday, September 17th and was greeted by my lovely family at the airport. I received hugs and kisses along with two beautiful flower arrangements. I am truly blessed.

After checking in at my hotel, I went to Promise Home for one of my favorite meals, a Korean BBQ. We enjoyed chicken, pork, vegetables, noodles, crab, hot dogs and broth. This is the time to eat until you are completely stuffed. The children make sure that mom does not go hungry....

After dinner we celebrated the most recent and upcoming birthdays of some of the children. Sandi's birthday was in July, Yim's was the first part of this month, Ahmorntep's was on the 19th of this month and Teerladet's is in October. It is always good to have cake.

The children have a collection of beetles that they keep for about two months. This beetle is the mascot of the Chiang Rai futbol team, Chiang Rai United and they will fight each other. They live on pieces of bamboo and that is also what they eat. Big and the children give them new stalks of bamboo once they have chewed through the old ones.

The children are still in school and it is exam time. The oldest girls, Palita and Nittaya will be out of school for about a month beginning tomorrow and the others will follow shortly. This is the time for their winter break. All of the children go to different schools so they are all on different schedules. It is a lot to keep track of.

I keep myself busy during the day and will be heading to Mae Salong in the morning. There I will meet with the Lisa hill tribe teacher to talk about a couple of children they would like us to eventually take in.

Enjoy the photos of Saturday night.

Until next time....

God Bless,


Friday, September 16, 2016


Wow! I just looked at the blog and realized that the last time I posted something on here was February. Man, how time flies.

I am sitting in my hotel room in Bangkok writing this just passing the time until I leave to head up to Chiang Rai. I will be here for two weeks visiting friends, checking on the children and the home and just enjoying time with everyone. Be sure to watch for updates and pictures.

Charities Within Reach is working on a project to bring the oldest daughter of our dear friends Jermsak and Da to the United States for a year of school. Her name is Care and she will be staying with a host home in Niwot and attending Niwot High School. Our goal is to raise funds to get her here along with her parents and have some "extra" for her to spend while she is here. This is an exciting time and we hope that this is just the beginning of bringing our children over to spend time in the United States. Care's goal is to learn more about education in the US and to improve her English. She is quite the accomplished young lady already in terms of language skills; she speaks Thai, English and Chinese. Impressive, right?

I am really looking forward to spending time with the children and am excited to share my visit with everyone. I look at them today and am amazed at how they have grown since I first met them three years ago this month and marvel at how they have changed. They are no longer small and frail looking. They looked well cared for, happy, content and most importantly of all, loved. It is truly gratifying to see these changes and to know that we helped make this happen. Thank you for always following along on this journey and giving your love and support in many different ways. You have made a tremendous difference in their lives.

Till next time....

God Bless,


Saturday, February 20, 2016

9th Grade Continuation

As parents and family members many of us have had the opportunity to share in and experience the joy of continuation or graduation. It is a day of great happiness and a sense of accomplishment. Over the years I have attended many such occasions and the pride and joy is the same each time. February 20, 2016 was no exception,  perhaps I experience even a tiny bit more joy and pride given the circumstances of girls involved. 

The members Charities Within Reach set goals to help our children get an education in the hopes that they will be allowed to better their lives in addition to the lives of their families. Our hope is that each child continues on to High School and then either University or Trade School and yesterday, Palita and Nittaya were the first of our children to take that step. Over the past three years they worked hard at their schoolwork and they were rewarded with their continuation from the 9th grade. 

When my daughter and I visited in December, Palita asked me to come and be here for this very special day in her life and thanks to many people, I was able to attend. I made my arrangements but did not tell the children as I wanted my arrival to be a surprise. It was quite the surprise indeed. I arrived at the home unannounced and once Tin recognized it was me, he immediately ran to me loudly telling the others that I was there. So much fun.

Continuation was full of much pomp and ceremony like all other such occasions and even if I couldn't understand what was being said, I understood the importance of it all. Although it was a long morning, the end was well worth it. Families from all over the area celebrated with their children and basked in the joy of their accomplishments. Today, I was allowed the gift of being one of those family members who could share in this day with my girls. Such a wonderful day!!! 

Enjoy some images of the day... 

Palita and her diploma 

Nittaya with hers

Nittaya and her mother 

Nittaya being congratulated by her mother 

Pa Ann and Palita 

Nittaya, her mother and Pa Ann 

Palita and her brothers 

The two graduates

The girls with Da 

The graduates and me 

The whole family

Till next time.... 

God Bless,

5 Year Anniversary and Still Going Strong!!!

Good morning~ I woke up this morning and realized that five years ago today, I began the first leg of a journey that would forever change ...