The Year of the Pig

April 15, 2019 — Leave a comment

Recently I returned from a trip in China right after their Spring Festival, which marks the start of their Lunar New Year. As you may know, there are a dozen characters that make up the revolving zodiac representatives of each new year. Many in China can tell your age, if you tell them which zodiac animal represented the year in which you were born. Would you like to know which year’s animal represented the year in which I was born?

The Year of the Pig | BeauSides.com

That is right! I was born in the year of the pig! Can you see the resemblance? With my eating habits and the way I kept my college room, well, the irony is overwhelming!

The Year of the Pig | BeauSides.com

Pigs are apparently playful, as you can see here and in the next photo! Who knew?

The Year of the Pig | BeauSides.com

The culture in China would dictate that I wear the color red often this entire year. You should have good luck when it is the year of the animal representing the year you were born, and you should wear red clothes frequently! That enhances your good luck, and maybe people will notice this is your year!

Oh, and one last photo of a cool pig indeed!

The Year of the Pig | BeauSides.com

Happy Year of the Pig!

Most of my blogs about the work of Global Partners in Life are centered around orphans and special needs orphans we support. We are not limited to only serving the children, and we also serve another demographic group. Do you know who they are?

Global Partners in Life has been supporting widows in China, and after my first visit to India, we started assisting widows in India as well. Would you like to hear more about them?

In Desperate Need of Assistance | BeauSides.com

When we entered the slums, I was introduced to a widow who had lost her husband to tuberculosis. She has 5 daughters, and the youngest girl is a deaf-mute. It is believed surgery would restore the little girl’s hearing, and that would help her to become verbal, but the mom can’t afford the surgery. Nineteen days before we arrived, the winds and rain from the monsoon season literally ripped their home in half. In the photo above, you can see the debris field left from their home being destroyed.

In Desperate Need of Assistance | BeauSides.com

Not too long after I returned home from the trip, India was hit with a devastating cyclone named Titli. As you can see in the photo above, there was widespread flooding and damaged homes of widows living in the slums.

In Desperate Need of Assistance | BeauSides.com

Through the contributions from the wonderful supporters of Global Partners in Life, we were able to provide care packages and desperately needed supplies for the widows that lost their homes and possessions from the cyclone!

After I learned more about the widow’s situations, I told my friend in India it was on my heart to provide a permanent structure above the flood zone for the widows. My friend told me that was also on his heart, so we are making plans to provide a facility for the widows in India. I look forward to telling you more about this project as it develops!

Thanks so much to the friends of Global Partners in Life that enable us to provide hope to the hopeless!

As I mentioned a few blogs ago, I have had my first trip to India. After being picked up at the airport, I was taken to a retail area because the people picking me up needed to do some shopping. Although I was somewhat prepared for all of the horn blowing, since I have been to China many times, there were many other sights, sounds, and smells that were quite unique. Would you like to know what some of them were?

The Land of Hindu Temples | BeauSides.com

Directly across the street from where my friends were shopping, there was a Hindu temple. This particular one was very colorful, and I could smell the incense being burned for quite a distance! I was surprised by how frequently I saw the temples around India. They came in many shapes, sizes, and colors!  Would you like to see more?

Land of Hindu Temples | BeauSides.com

The dome on this temple was probably 4 stories high.I promise you, I wouldn’t want to use the ladder you see built into the dome! The weather in this area is VERY warm and humid, so I am sure the view from on the dome would be full of greenery and many different forms of plants, but I wouldn’t climb the dome just for the view!

Land of Hindu Temples | BeauSides.com

This plaque was mounted inside a store. I am told one of the gods the Hindu worship is called the elephant god, and this plaque is for the elephant god. You can see where the holes are in and around the plaque for holding incense, which is burned for the elephant god.

India is full of many bright colors, interesting new smells, and wonderful people. I hope to share more with you about my time there!

 

A New Orphanage in India

February 28, 2019 — Leave a comment

As I mentioned in a previous blog, I recently had my first visit to India. The day before I left, the friend I was meeting there notified me that there was a newborn baby at the orphanage they were taking me to see. This baby had been delivered behind some bushes in a local public park, and then just left there. I was asked to bring some necessary items for the baby, which I quickly went out to purchase. Would you like to see her?

A New Orphanage in India | BeauSides.com

When this photo was taken, she was about 2 weeks old! The orphanage she is in was recently opened, and they are already doing amazing things! They are fully staffed, and are already running out of room. They can only have 10 children there at one time, and they have been successful in seeing many of the children under their care adopted by loving families! Would you like to see more from this new orphanage?

A New Orphanage in India | BeauSides.com

This new orphanage is very clean and organized, and the staff seems to truly love the children. I am thankful and honored to say that Global Partners in Life is now financially supporting this orphanage!

A New Orphanage in India | BeauSides.com

In the photo above, you can see some of the children that have had life-saving care provided for them at this orphanage! I was quite impressed with the leaders, caregivers, and the facility. Thanks to the people that give generously to Global Partners in Life, these children had a place where they can receive the care, food, love, and nurturing they need 24 hours a day!

 

Dining in India

February 15, 2019 — Leave a comment

In the previous blog for January, you learned that I went to India when I left China last fall. You have heard me tell many stories about the delicious meals in China, so I thought I would share with you some of my dining experiences in India. Would you like to see a normal meal?

Dining in India | BeauSides.com

As we entered the restaurant for my first meal in India, I noticed that along the wall the restaurant had many sinks. Since you eat with your hands in India, the restaurant provides you with many opportunities to wash your hands near your table. The meal in the photo above was curry. It is common to have a bowl of rice served with the curry. So, the process is for you to use the stainless steel tray as your plate. You will put the rice on the tray, and then place the different curry dishes on the tray as well. This is the interesting part: you will then mix the curry with the rice with your hands and, when it gets to a good consistency, you will pick up the rice and curry ball with your hand and put it into your mouth.

I must say the food was delicious! On this trip I used both chopsticks in China and then my hands in India to eat my meals. Don’t be fooled, eating with your hands is more difficult than you may think. If you have any loose rice stuck to your hand, it may fall off as you put the food in your mouth. Trust me about this! Sometimes you will also have some flat bread with the meal, which has a wonderful flavor!

Dining in India | BeauSides.com

Getting a cup of hot chai is very common in India. The photo above was taken from a street vendor, and they have a special way to mix the tea and milk as it comes to a foamy head. If I remember correctly, the procedure actually has the chai foaming up a couple of times. While walking around the streets in India, I could smell the chai being prepared in many places.

Hopefully you enjoyed our tour of dining and beverages in India! I look forward to sharing more with you about India in the future!

A Heartwarming Moment

January 30, 2019 — Leave a comment

There is a young boy named Xiao Wei at the special needs orphanage supported by Global Partners in Life. He is about five years old, and he is blind . . . but I don’t think he knows it. He constantly amazes me by how well he can walk and function inside the orphanage. He loves to dance and wrestle with his friends, and he has a very soft and sweet voice. Would you like to meet him? In the photograph below he is actually dancing!

A Heartwarming Moment - BeauSides.com

When I was there in December, I asked him in Chinese if he knew my name. With his innocent voice, he clearly said Beau. I gave him a hug and congratulated him and I was patting his shoulder when he took my hand. He had never done that before with me, but I could tell he wanted to lead me. We walked around the orphanage, and he led the entire way!

A Heartwarming Moment - BeauSides.com

My apologies for the poor quality of the picture above, but I was walking, holding Xiao Wei’s hand, and trying to take the picture with my left hand. Yes, I am right handed. Hopefully you can tell this is Xiao Wei leading me around his home, and I couldn’t have been happier!

The main reason I was at the special needs orphanage that day was to provide financial support for the children and the staff. Through the contributions of our generous donors, Global Partners in Life keeps the children who can go to school in school. We pay for their school fees, lunches, books, supplies, and uniforms. Also, we pay for the children’s food, utilities, toiletries, and the salaries of their caregivers. On this day I also provided Christmas gifts for the children! It was a fantastic day for all of us!

As Global Partners in Life looks for new opportunities to have a greater impact around the world, this fall I went to India. With some research I had done earlier in the year, I learned the worst conditions for orphans were in India. That piqued my interest — and luckily I had a contact that was in India — so when I left China, I went to India.

Upon arriving in India, it was as though my senses were being overloaded! There were so many new sights, sounds, colors, and smells, so I was thankful I had a little traveling to other countries to prepare me for India. All that I was absorbing was fascinating! Oh, and did I mention the heat and humidity? I was there during the monsoon season, so it literally rained every day I was there and it felt like about 96 degrees Fahrenheit!  So the combination of heat and humidity was impressive daily!

New Territories to Explore | BeauSides.com

One of the first things that caught my eye was how animals of all shapes and sizes roam freely through the streets and shopping areas. This really was a funny story in the photo above. The man seated by the tree was selling corn, and the cow wanted some of his corn. To accommodate the cow, but not give away his best merchandise, the man put some of the corn husks and trimmings on the ground. He had a large bag of good corn on the other side of the tree. The cow took what he could easily get on the ground, and when the man became engaged with a customer, the cow went around to the other side of the tree and ate some of the man’s good corn!

New Territories to Explore | BeauSides.com

Another thing that caught my eye was how elaborately the long distance hauling trucks were decorated. These trucks would be taller that the ones we see in the States, and sometimes their cargo was stacked on top of the trailers, with large nets trying to hold everything on the trailer. On the back of almost all of these large trucks would be the request to please blow your horn. The drivers of the trucks would have a very difficult time seeing you, so they politely ask for you to blow your horn when you approach them.

New Territories to Explore | BeauSides.com

New Territories to Explore | BeauSides.com

I am sure we will have many more stories about my trip to India! Hopefully you will enjoy the culture as much as I did!

The donors of Global Partners in Life truly came through for the special needs orphans in China! Through their generous contributions, together we were able to provide for the children and staff in many ways! Would you like to see some of them?

Spreading Christmas Cheer | BeauSides.com

In the photograph above, you can see some of the toys, diapers, and clothes purchased for the children. The main request for gifts this year was for new warm clothes, since the children’s old clothes were worn and thin.

Spreading Christmas Cheer | BeauSides.com

As you can see, blue jeans, coats, and jackets were purchased for the children during my trip in December. It was eleven degrees below zero Fahrenheit when I was in the city, so warm clothes are critical!

Spreading Christmas Cheer | BeauSides.com

Out of all of the toys that were given to the children that day, I think the yo-yos were the biggest hit. These yo-yos were special, because they had some type of a plastic device you could insert into the center and then wrap the string around it. With the plastic device in place, the children could have the yo-yo spin in hesitation mode for a very long period of time, which enabled them to do some pretty cool tricks!

When I entered the orphanage, the leader and children came to greet me. Many of them were speaking and the leader started laughing. She told me that one of the children asked if I had brought them anything to eat, since I always bring them some chocolate from America. Obviously, I quickly passed out the miniature chocolate candy bars!

It was great seeing my young friends again! I am very thankful for the many gifts from our donors which enabled the children to have a great Christmas! We were also able to provide for the children’s food, utilities, toiletries, cleaning supplies, medical needs, and for the caregivers that serve the children daily.

This is what we can do when we come together for an important cause!

Having just returned from a trip to China, I am happy to share with you the beautiful and colorful Christmas decorations I found. Even though Christmas isn’t really celebrated as a holiday in China, many restaurants, hotels, and department stores decorate for the season! Would you like to know what famous designer participates also?

It Is Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas | BeauSides.com

As you can see in the photo above, even Louis Vuitton decorates his store for Christmas in Beijing! I must admit that this was a large tree indeed!

When I arrived at my hotel in Beijing, the train arrived too early for me to check in and it was too cold to stay outside and sightsee, so I walked around the hotel and photographed some of their decorations. Would you like to see them?

It Is Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas | BeauSides.com

One of the hotel’s restaurants is just beyond the glass case you see on the back left of this photo. I will show you the case and how the employees were dressed this year!

It Is Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas | BeauSides.com

It Is Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas | BeauSides.com

It Is Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas | BeauSides.com

The photo above was taken outside a mall at about 4:30 PM. Yes, it gets that dark that early in this city! It was crazy cold this day and the wind was blowing, so I felt sorry for the workers decorating this display. They definitely were not Grinches that day!

May you have the merriest of Christmases!

 

Let me introduce you to one of my young friends from the special needs orphanage supported by Global Partners in Life in China. His name is Xiao Wei, and he is about 4 years old. Would you like to see him?

There is Hope for His Future - BeauSides.com

Perhaps you can tell from the photo above that he likes to play, and he has a jovial disposition, but his story is a sad one. Xiao Wei was born with a twin sister, and they were premature. Unfortunately, when the twins were put in the oxygen chamber, the protection needed for their prolonged exposure to oxygen was put over his sister’s eyes, but not his. This exposure of his eyes to all of the oxygen has caused his blindness. He does, however, sense light.

There is Hope for His Future - BeauSides.com

Xiao Wei has become much more vocal in the past year compared to his previous year or two at the orphanage. He likes to wrestle with the other boys, and he is without a doubt the best dancer there! When I visit, he recognizes my voice and will say, “Mom, is Beau here?” — which absolutely makes my day!

Global Partners in Life has been given his medical records and they have been given to an eye surgeon in America to review. Unfortunately, his medical needs were not addressed immediately, so for now, there is nothing that can be done. But I am happy to report that there is potentially a surgical procedure that can be performed when he is around 20 years old which could restore his vision! I would be thrilled if this actually can take place! It would be an honor to help this young fellow reach his potential and enjoy life to the fullest.

Thanks so much to the people that contribute to the work Global Partners in Life is doing! Your donations have helped many children like Xiao Wei to have the life-changing medical procedures they need and to have the highest quality of life as possible!