This past weekend I got to attend the Noonday Ambassador conference in Texas. I knew it would be good ya’ll but it was better than good. It was LIFE CHANGING good! We kicked off the festivities with drinks at Olive and June in Austin. It was a little intimidating walking into a room with 120 world changing woman. Of course they were all super sweet, SO much fun and amazing!
Before we left Austin to head to our retreat center in the hill country we had a fun brunch at Jessica’s house and then went on a tour of the home office. Some of my favorite conversations of the whole weekend took place in Jessica’s kitchen. I got to talk with two Ambassadors that have been with Noonday since it started and hear about how much Noonday has grown.
On Friday afternoon we got to hear our founders speak about their “why” (why they started Noonday). They asked a few ambassadors what their “why” was and so I got to share in front of 120 ambassadors how I came to be a part of Noonday. I was so nervous to speak in front of that many people but I feel like God has used Noonday to really get me out of my comfort zone! He has used Noonday to open my eyes to SO much this past year. Two years ago I didn’t know that much about shopping with a purpose, HIV, orphan prevention, and modern day slavery. But NOW, I can’t stop talking about these things. These are normal everyday conversations I now get to have with friends and other women at my trunk shows.
One of my most favorite parts of the weekend was getting to hear our lead Ugandan artisan, Jalia, share her story. Her and her husband were the first artisan’s that Noonday partnered with. Noonday ( and JESUS) has literally lifted her family out of poverty through sustainable job creation. By some miracle I got to sit next to sweet Jalia at dinner. We chatted about her family and mine over a delicious meal. She showed off picture of her kids and asked me about mine. Over the course of dinner we somehow figured out that we are similar in age. It was so humbling to be in her presence and I felt guilty for the life that God has blessed me with. Why did she grow up in poverty and I didn’t? I am so grateful that my eyes have been OPENED and I am forever changed. It is a JOY and an HONOR to get to work for Noonday to share with other women about Jalia and the Ugandan artisan group.
Over the past year I have gotten to connect with many of the ambassadors online but had not gotten to meet them in person. It was SO fun to finally get to meet them in real life and hug their necks. I loved hearing their stories. We come from such different backgrounds and live all over the U.S. but yet we are all united in the same mindset, the same mission.
These three sweet friends (Wynne, McCall and Ashley) are all adoptive mama’s I have gotten to know via facebook. I love when online friends become real life friends! They have each been such an encouragement to me in our adoption process. I love that our worlds collide via Noonday and adoption!
On the last day of the conference we got to meet sweet Tessa. If you don’t already know her story you can read about it here! Tessa’s mom came to speak us on Sunday morning and she shard Tessa’s adoption story. They waited FIVE years for Tessa. Her talk was so encouraging to me while we are in the waiting stage of the adoption process.
Travis and Jessica, Jesus has used each of your stories and your faithfulness to say “YES” to his plan to turn my world upside down this past year. In the words of Ann Voskamp, ” Now is the time to let your life be poured out as ink in a epic story of bold sacrifice and starling courage. Now is the time to live upside down. Christ is the Truth who whispers that giving yourself for one person is how you really change the world”
SO what are you waiting for? The spring line launches FEBRUARY 20th!!! Contact me to host a show today! If you aren’t local you can connect with someone in your area through the Noonday website.
For behind the scenes footage of the Noonday Ambassador conference you can check out this amazing video!