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Donelle M. Knudsen

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Member Since: Jul, 2008

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Blogs by Donelle M. Knudsen

Life Changing Blessings From Things We Take For Granted
8/19/2008 12:39:18 PM
My niece is living one summer in Ethiopia and receiving a lifetime of experiences.
My 25 year old daughter and I just returned from Portland where we spent 2 days shopping for her upcoming wedding. We also spent a few hours with extended family and heard more about how my 22 year old niece is faring on her 3 month internship at an orphanage in Ethiopia. Sure, she will receive college credit, but she didn’t have to go all the way to Africa. My niece has a tender heart for children, especially the disadvantaged, and she couldn't wait to go.

Thanks to the miracle of computers and email, we saw stunning photos of the Ethiopian countryside and, by our standards, some of the primitive living conditions. After reading her emails, I tried to imagine myself dealing with the on-again/off-again supply of electricity and water, “interesting” sanitation conditions, eating food that doesn’t stay in the stomach and negotiating the busy streets of Addis Ababa, the country’s capital which hosts 3 million people. Honestly, at that age I wouldn’t have ventured so far from home to live in an environment as foreign to me as the face of the moon.

I think I understand how my niece feels about orphans though. My husband and I adopted a baby, now our beautiful soon-to-be-bride, from a foster home in South Korea 25 years ago. I remember falling in love with her picture and keeping that grainy black and white photo with me for three months as we counted the days for her to come home. I know my niece cherishes each hug she gets from the precious children in her care and I’m sure her heart feels a huge tug when the older ones ask, "You adopt me?"

As residents of the U.S. we are blessed to live in a country in which we can pursue our dreams and buy anything we want with the “click of a mouse.” Rarely does our electricity or water supply disappoint us, and when it does, it’s usually because of some natural disaster and not because it's shut off to save energy or because a system fails.

My niece said that she went to Africa to hopefully make changes in that country, but she discovered her experiences have changed her. Wow, I couldn’t have said it better. Just when we think life will go one way, circumstances surprise us and we receive a blessing or a lesson that changes our lives forever.

I can't wait to see my niece in September so I can give her a hug and hear all about her marvelous experiences in a unique and beautiful part of the world.

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More Blogs by Donelle M. Knudsen
• Back and in Full Swing - Tuesday, November 12, 2013
• Cliffhangers . . . - Saturday, September 08, 2012
• Technology Brings Peace of Mind - Monday, September 03, 2012
• A Conference For All - Thursday, May 24, 2012
• To Live Well and Prosper - Monday, February 27, 2012
• Friends - Monday, January 23, 2012
• Dickens of a Writer - Friday, January 13, 2012
• So Far, December is Warmer Than Springtime - Thursday, December 29, 2011
• Get Ready, Set, Go - Thursday, November 24, 2011
• Coffee is My Friend - Friday, November 18, 2011
• How Much Will You Invest to Win? - Thursday, November 17, 2011
• Star Wars and The Wizard of Oz - Sunday, August 28, 2011
• Throw Your Heart At The Sky - Sunday, July 24, 2011
• In Memory - Monday, May 30, 2011
• Book Signings and More - Sunday, May 15, 2011
• Through the Tunnel of Love - Friday, April 29, 2011
• Grandparents - Sunday, April 03, 2011
• Finding the Heat - Sunday, March 06, 2011
• Slivers, Part II - Tuesday, February 15, 2011
• Slivers - Sunday, December 05, 2010
• Where Have All the Hummers Gone? - Saturday, September 18, 2010
• Don't Blink - Tuesday, July 13, 2010
• The Color of Love - Friday, June 25, 2010
• New Life - Thursday, April 29, 2010
• Gray on Grey - Thursday, February 25, 2010
• Chrysalis - Wednesday, January 13, 2010
• All That Glitters - Wednesday, December 16, 2009
• The Art of Connecting is Alive and Well - Monday, November 16, 2009
• Waiting for Inspiration? - Saturday, August 22, 2009
• Saying Goodbye to A Friend - Wednesday, July 22, 2009
• Sands of Time - Thursday, June 11, 2009
• Take a Walk in Someone Else's Shoes - Thursday, June 04, 2009
• Ready for a Straight Stretch of Road - Thursday, May 21, 2009
• Serendipity - Saturday, March 14, 2009
• Looking Forward - Wednesday, January 07, 2009
• Down Memory Lane - Tuesday, December 09, 2008
• What's Important to Me - Wednesday, November 12, 2008
• Standard Time Returns - Saturday, November 01, 2008
• Rested, Recouperated and Ready for Action - Wednesday, October 29, 2008
• Ready for Some Good News? - Wednesday, October 15, 2008
• Enough is Enough - Wednesday, October 08, 2008
• Season of Change - Tuesday, September 30, 2008
• Visit New York City in the Autumn and Don't Miss the Broadway Plays - Friday, September 05, 2008
• Politics, Back to School and Mr. Spock - Tuesday, August 26, 2008
•  Life Changing Blessings From Things We Take For Granted - Tuesday, August 19, 2008  
• Winning, Losing and Rekindling the Olympic Flame - Monday, August 11, 2008
• Eureka or That Aha Moment - Tuesday, August 05, 2008
• Off to the Agent - Sunday, August 03, 2008
• A Promise to Remember - Thursday, July 31, 2008
• Time in a Bottle - Friday, July 25, 2008

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