Wednesday, 22 September 2010

It's a girl blog giveaway

Thanks for all the positive feedback about my new theme of pursuing life to the full. I've been excited about it all week! One idea I'm growing is to have revolving themes for my entries, and today's post straddles two themes quite nicely. It's all about doing our bit to make the world a happier, more just place and also about creating beauty. I love when those two guys merge.

This post also features my second blog giveaway. It's been awhile, and I think this giveaway is awesome on many levels. Here's the backstory...


A few weeks ago I attended my friend Rebekah's baby shower for her soon-to-arrive daughter Josie. Rebekah married into a family with an apparently recessive female gene (four boys with five sons collectively) and, when she got pregnant for the third time, held her breath at the hope of maybe, possibly having a little girl. You can read the story about Josie here, but all this to say that so much love and effort was poured into this shower for an eagerly anticipated baby girl.

When I went to Josie's shower I was reading an emotional roller coaster of a book called Message from an Unknown Chinese Mother. This book is written by a Chinese woman now living in London and addresses the phenomenon of international adoption of baby girls from China to the Western world. This book delicately addresses the question many people have at least wondered, "How could any mother give up her child?" The answer: very painfully.

It's easy to condemn a culture that seems to belittle women and devalue baby girls, but what I love about this book is how it gets under the skin of women forced to give up their babies for adoption (or forced abortion or infanticide), out of cultural, familial, political and financial pressure,  and carry that scar of motherhood denied the rest of their lives. After reading this book I got the sense that it's not just baby girls who are born at a disadvantage in China, but women of all ages have had to put up with unbearable burdens for generations. This book, understandably, broke my heart.

International adoption is a very complex issue, and I won't pretend to know all or even much about it. I don't think anybody should go into adoption with a savior complex or without the willingness to acknowledge the difficulties that arise when a child is plucked from her culture.

But, I also feel strongly that being willing to adopt, domestically and internationally, can be a beautiful, life-giving journey.

My friends Jessi and Andrew are taking the first steps of that long, expensive journey at the moment. They are two of the most good-hearted, loving people I know. Currently they are in the process of looking to adopt a special needs child from China. They don't want their adoption process to stop there though, bringing a child over and then forgetting about the surrounding issues. Jessi says in a recent blog post:

We also long to do more to help change the reason so many kids need adopting in the first place. Acknowledging with solemn and grateful hearts that our child coming home from China creates a deeper response in us to our child's birth country, to our child's first family if not literally then by helping others like them who could not, for various reasons, keep their own child. The heartbreaking truth is that adoption begins with loss. But all is not lost. Hope springs from rocky places, love can grow from unexpected sources.

Financially, this is going to take a small miracle, but Jess is doing her bit to raise money by selling her vintage-inspired jewelry on-line.

Jessi's jewelry is gorgeous, and in order to raise awareness for international adoption, she's giving away a product from her Wild Poppy Shoppe to one of my blog readers. Here's a sneak peek...



For a chance to win, please visit Wild Poppy Shoppe and leave a comment below telling me your favorite item from the shop. For an extra chance at winning, you can tweet, facebook or blog about the giveaway, and come back and comment with the link. If you twitter, please tag it with @alishasanvicens

The lucky winner will be chosen at random next Wednesday, Sept 29 at 10am PST so check back then! Good luck.

Again, this post merely scratches the surface on the topic of adoption, but I think it's something worth thinking about, and definitely worth supporting. Please think of Wild Poppy Shoppe next time you're in the market for jewelry for yourself or a friend.


{baby shower photos from jenny, thanks!}

22 comments:

T.V and Book Addict said...

Wow, she has beautiful items in her shop! I'm loving it all! My favorite is probably her Red Carnelian Beaded Flower Necklace- Scarlet Spice. It's so lovely and creative!

Aww that book sounds extremely sad! I'm going to recommend it to a friend of mine. She would be very, very interested in it.

Rachael Randal said...

I love the plaid flower pins, but being an earring girl, I can't resist the vintage anchor earrings! Gorgeous.

Can I also ask Jessi to make the plaid flowers as earrings??? - I would definitely buy them!

Am going to post a link to your giveaway on facebook rather than twitter - hope that's ok!

alisha said...

Rachael, good idea about facebook too - I'll add that to the text above. And I'm sure Jessi would be willing to make bespoke jewelry. :) Those plaid flowers are amazing!

katieleigh said...

What a great giveaway! So many beautiful items - but I think the Eiffel Tower & Honey Green Blooms necklace is my favorite.

Shannon of ** Happiness Is...** said...

Such a sweet back story! The burnt orange felt flower is definitely my cup o' tea. Thanks for the giveaway! :) xo

wranglerdani.com said...

I love the burnt orange flower neckalce and the plum pearl hair comb! What lovely things!

wranglerdani.com said...

I also tweeted for you. :) Thanks!
http://twitter.com/wranglerdani

katieleigh said...

I tweeted for you too! :) http://twitter.com/katiengibson/status/25330247444

Nadine said...

Beautiful post and beautiful items! I love everything, but the navy and white napkins are my favorite!

madwoman-doing-cartwheels said...

I love the Orange Carnelian Sand Dollar Necklace. It has the perfect blend of color with vintage brass.

http://www.etsy.com/listing/52651498/free-us-shipping-orange-carnelian-sand

rubymoonstone at gmail dot com

Joanna Roddy said...

I like the orange spice and olive green flower necklace!

I also loved hearing about Jessi and Andrew's story of adoption. I send hope and prayers their way.

And facebooked it as well. http://www.facebook.com/#!/joannaroddy

Sue said...

It is so hard to pick one...there were so many beautiful pieces. I loved the necklace you have in your blog, but my favorite is Classic Vintage Faux Pearl Earrings, Ivory Wire Wrapped.

I wish them well on their journey into parenthood.

Kendall said...

What a lovely post. Her jewelry is fabulous. I love the orange spice and olive green beaded necklace. Perfect to spice up a fall wardrobe.

Jenny said...

i hope i win i hope i win!

you know i LOVE the corduroy plaid one...hoping it also has a hair clip back ;)

i also facebooked the giveaway. thanks alisha!

Ann Strunk said...

One of my favorites is the Black Vintage Beaded Necklace. Everything is really lovely. Thanks for pointing me in her direction. Will definitely keep it in mind for future jewelry buying :)

Emer said...

OMG DEF the Silk Flower Pin in Chocolate Brown with Vintage Pearl and Polka Dot Plumes!! That is only GORGEOUS!!!

I want this piece because it is one of the colours of my favourite colour combination which is brown, turquoise and silver. (These will incidentally be my wedding colours!) I have a turquoise silk dress that is only CRYING out for adornment and that is the most perfect accessory!

MANY congratulations to Rebekah! I remember she was a co-singer at your wedding and she had the most amazing voice. Will look up that book also as all your recommendations have always worked out! ref. Blue Like Jazz! :o)

Kisses!
E. x

Katie Strawn said...

I love all of them.... How's a girl to choose? Jess is such a talented (and beautiful) woman. My favorite is the mango Jasper w navy flower necklace- love the color pairing.

Rachel said...

The one that jumped out at me was the Yellow Mango Jasper and Navy Bloom Beaded Flower Necklace. There's something about the dark blue and bright yellow that is really beautiful. Good luck to Jessi!

Heather Olson said...

Jessi is so talented! I love the Plum and Vitage Faux Pearl hair comb - absolutely gorgeous. Everything on her site is stunning!

Rebekah said...

such a sweet post Alisha (I thought I left a comment here already but looks like I didn't) I really do love the heart of adoption, Chris and I have always talked about it for down the road..
thank you for including my heart and story for a daughter I feel very honored- I am sending blessings to Jessi and family..and I LOVE the jewelry, the yellow beaded one with the navy flower is a favorite for sure!

misschicago said...

My favorites are the chocolate brown polka dot flower pin with the vintage pearl in the middle.
I also love the silk flower-sky blue with chocholate brown tulle. :) thanks for sharing.

Alison said...

Great idea, Alisha! You are so inspiring and fun! I too love the Orange Spice and Olive Green Beaded Flower Necklace - but so many are just gorgeous! Thanks for such a creative way to spread the word!

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