Mexican hot chocolateWhat you see there is a cup of rich, cinnamon-spiked hot chocolate in a cafe in Oaxaca, Mexico.  I’m sure it only sat there just long enough to cool. That chocolate was one of the highlights of our trip to Oaxaca last year, the details of which I wrote about here.

Little did I know then that I’d be back there almost exactly a year to the day we visited last December. Only this time, it’s just me and my middle daughter, Rosie, who are going, boarding a plane later today.

When I last wrote about Oaxaca, I focused on its magic — the beauty, culture, and food.  I only touched on the heartbreaking part: The poverty, and most especially, the sight of children in the streets, begging, often late into the night, sometimes with their parents, sometimes alone. We were all moved, but nobody more than Rosie.

Every night Rosie asked if we could go into the street to visit the kids.  She bought toys in the marketplace. We’d stop at one of the many bake shops to buy bread and pastries and pick up bottles of water and fresh fruit.

It never felt like enough. But then the trip was over. And we left Oaxaca, thinking, maybe, some day, we’d get back there.

And then last summer after attending a girl’s soccer/leadership camp, Rosie decided that indeed, it wasn’t enough. A big emphasis at the camp was empowering girls to do something meaningful in the community. To make a difference. Rosie set her sights on Oaxaca. Through a friend who had lived there, we identified a charity that cares for children whose parents cannot. A testament to how one person can make an impact, it started when one woman, Doña Coco, took in one child. She now houses, feeds, clothes, and loves 52 children.

Rosie started a fundraising campaign. She wrote a letter to her circle of 7th and 8th grade friends, their parents, other friends, and extended family. She also held a couple of bake sales. Through these combined efforts, Rosie will arrive in Oaxaca tonight with nearly $6000.  We are both looking forward to meeting Doña Coco, to bringing her the donation, and to spending time with the kids.

We’re packing light, but my camera will be along for the journey.  I hope to report back with images from our trip and a little about the experience.  I’ll also be posting updates on Instagram, so you can follow along there.

To be honest, I’m a little scared to get on that plane. I’m not accustomed to traveling to foreign places without my whole crew, and certainly not without Mr. Mom’s Kitchen. But the jitters are drowned out by the thrill of an adventure and the excitement of being with Rosie as she comes full circle with the kids in Oaxaca.

Wish us well.

I wish you well, too.

Happy New Year.



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  1. 12.31.2013 at 5:39 AM #

    Sounds like it will be an amazing trip. You must be so proud of Rosie. Good luck and can’t wait to hear and see more about it!

    • katiemorford
      12.31.2013 at 8:23 AM #

      Thanks Sally. Happy New Year.

  2. 12.31.2013 at 6:15 AM #

    This is my first time landing on your blog, am I’m so glad I stumbled upon it. What an inspiration your daughter is. My daughter is 5 and I pray that she’ll grow up with a generous spirit, too. I wish you well on your trip and look forward to reading more of your lovely blog.

    • katiemorford
      12.31.2013 at 8:26 AM #

      Hi Maryea,
      Glad you stumbled here. I appreciate you chiming in and your good wishes.

  3. Pam R
    12.31.2013 at 7:25 AM #

    Safe travels! Can’t wait to hear about the trip when you return.

  4. Renee
    12.31.2013 at 7:36 AM #

    Safe travels and plentiful hot chocolate to you both! Good job, Rosie!

    • katiemorford
      12.31.2013 at 8:24 AM #

      There will be no shortage of hot chocolate. Thanks Renee.

  5. yunah
    12.31.2013 at 8:25 AM #

    i would have the jitters too katie –
    bon voyage & happy new year!!
    xo, y

  6. Laurie-Ann
    12.31.2013 at 9:31 AM #

    What an inspiring story. I’m a friend of Dave’s and our family met Rosie at Two Bears Dancing a few years ago- my daughter is a year younger. Best wishes to you and Rosie on your journey. I look forward to reading about your experience.

    • katiemorford
      12.31.2013 at 9:39 AM #

      Thanks Laurie-Ann!

  7. 12.31.2013 at 10:15 AM #

    You have so much to be proud of in Rosie. Have fun. (And, to echo Yunah, I’d be nervous too – what an empowering experience for both of you!)

  8. Gina
    12.31.2013 at 10:24 AM #

    Happy New Year and safe travels to you and Rosie. What a great life lesson and an inspiring experience. I look forward to your pictures.


  9. Kelly
    12.31.2013 at 4:34 PM #

    Nothing short of beyond inspiring Katie…thank you for sharing!

    Safe travels…

    • katiemorford
      01.05.2014 at 8:22 PM #

      Much appreciated, Kelly.

  10. 01.02.2014 at 1:31 PM #

    Your heart must be overflowing with pride Katie. I can’t wait to hear more about your trip. What a beautiful way to start a new year.

    • katiemorford
      01.05.2014 at 8:21 PM #

      Proud indeed….yet more proof of how much we can learn from our kids.

  11. 01.06.2014 at 7:48 PM #

    Rosie, and all your girls have such enormous hearts–like you. It’s been such a pleasure and a privilege to watch (and read about) you raise them these last few years, and I can only hope I do half as well raising a family that gives more than it takes. I’m thinking of you both–come home safely and tell us all about it. xo

  12. 01.14.2014 at 9:28 AM #

    Wow! You must be such a proud mama :-) I’m so excited for you and Rosie’s and your adventure together. Looking forward to more photos, and loved reading about your first trip to Oaxaca as well. After going to a wedding there, my husband and I both vowed to return one day with our kids. Now that we know about Dona Coco & her charity I’d love to get our kids involved with that too!

    • katiemorford
      01.14.2014 at 4:02 PM #

      It is a terrific place to travel with kids. Next time I’d love to take a beachy side trip!

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