Sunday, December 30, 2018

I'm going home!

This is basically a really long blog to tell you that I'm going back to Africa and to say Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and Happy New Year!!!! I will be serving with Mercy Ships again, this time the boat will be in Conakry, Guinea. I am excited to return and meet new friends and see some familiar faces! I leave February 23rd and return June 2nd. I am currently working in Houston until about February 10th, then I'll travel the US seeing friends and family before I go. It's a little too early to plan a job for when I return, so I will likely fly back to the US and figure it out then!
I stay in contact with my favorite friend, from Cameroon, Zidane and his Papa via WhatsApp. His dad sent me this picture last week. It was the greatest Christmas surprise! He has grown SO much! Of course, I'm sad he doesn't have his cheeky Zidane smile but it made my day! I sure miss him!
Once again, I have saved up over the past year and I plan to cover the costs of my trip but I know people want to help so I've set up a funding page again! Last year my friends and family donated enough money to cover my crew fees, I can't thank them enough! As this is a volunteer commitment I am responsible for my flight, medications/vaccinations, and crew fees while aboard. Anything will help offset my costs to go serve the people of Guinea! 
The website is https://mercyships-us.donorpages.com/crewmates/SierraStout
My first Christmas with my family in three years! But I sure did miss the festivities aboard the ship!

The title of this blog is actually a joke because I recently did 23andMe genetic testing. If you are unfamiliar with 23and Me, it's a really cool process. They mail you a test tube, you spit in it and mail it back to them. Once they have it they test you for over 50 genetic abnormalities that would potentially lead to diseases(Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, The BRCA breast cancer gene, muscular dystrophy, etc). Luckily, I do not have any of the genetic factors for the previous pathologies.  They also test your DNA for your ancestral heritage. No surprises here, I'm 99.7% European, but there is a teeny tiny .1% of my DNA that has been traced back to Senegal/Guinea! Therefore, my .1% is going home! I included some of the screen shots of my ancestry DNA information if you're curious what the other percentages are!


 

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I can't wait to share this experience with you all!! Thank you for being a part of my life and supporting my decisions! 😘 Love you!