Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Adoption Affirmation through Abundance

Merry Christmas Friends!
 
We hope you have a joy filled day celebrating the birth of our Savior!
 
We are celebrating the birth of Jesus with great abundance. We are blessed with family, friends, health and comfort.
 
Jesus was adopted :)  Did you know that?  Jesus had an earthly father.  I imagine that they had a typical father/son relationship.  Seeing as Jesus worked as a carpenter, I imagine Joseph trained him in those skills.  I can see them working hand over hand, Jesus hand gripping a chisel and hammer, Joseph gripping Jesus' hands, teaching Him how to use the tools of the carpentry trade.  As a disclaimer  ... those are just "my" thoughts. :) 
 
 
 
The title says Adoption Affirmation ... what does that mean? 
 
 
Guess
 
 
....
 
 
....
 
 
Go on
 
....
 
 
.....
 
 
Did you guess?
 
 
 
 
We are adopting again!
 
 
 
A little girl.
 
 
 
She is two years old.
 
 
 
She lives across the ocean.
 
 
 
Her name is Trinity and we are working hard to bring her home :)
 
 
 
You can see a little more about her on Reece's Rainbow
 
 
 
 
As soon as we decided we were following God's call to adopt again, chaos struck and it was immediately evident the spiritual battle was starting early and the attack foremost was on finances.
 
In October and November we replaced major appliances because the repair was not cost effective.  We also started a remodel to enclose our entryway and create more bedroom space.  We paid our initial agency fees and this month paid for our home study and other administrative expenses.
 
During this time, we decided we would put Christmas gifts as a very low priority.
 
Our washing machine was also repaired 5 times from October to December - we have an extended warranty so we did not have to pay for that, but what a hassle!! 
 
Sometimes discouragement sets in and I wonder how in the world this will all work out.  Then, something remarkable happens, it works out, but the workings come from out of this world.  The Lord show Himself and abundance flows.
 
We had the opportunity to share a little of our story at our church on Orphan Sunday.  Our desire in sharing that story was to encourage others to get involved in orphan care.  We just did not think that it would directly impact our family.  Were we wrong.  Three Sunday School classes decided to adopt our family and provide Christmas gifts for us. 
 
Aunt Sissy added a whole bunch of gifts too.  Our UPS driver was working overtime getting all of her present delivered to the house. 
 
When I was super discouraged over the laundry pile up, friends did my laundry.  They really did.  It still makes me cry.  Friends came to my doorstep and picked up the laundry to wash it, dry it, fold it and bring it back to me.  Can you believe that?????   Dozens of loads of laundry was washed by our friends!!!!!!!   We are really blessed!  We have children that regularly soil clothes ... and they are pretty funky smelling.  It even worked out that a friend took a bunch of laundry right before the machine was repaired and all of the laundry that washed, allowed me to start with my regular daily wash load.   I am still reminded of this blessing each time I walk into our laundry/family closet room and smell the scents from all of the different laundry products.  I think the scents are lingering as a daily reminder that God is in the details and He will work all things to His glory.  Even smelly, stinky, gross, laundry. :)
 
We have also had a number of friends and people we barely know, offer to help us fund raise for Trinity's adoption.
 
It is now early Christmas morning, and the gifts have all been stacked under the tree and they are abundant!  In the morning we have a big breakfast, and make a cake for Jesus' birthday, then we open presents.  Yes, I know, we are horrible ... making them wait, but we really want them to focus their mind on Jesus first.  I think they are going to be super anxious, we may have a hard time holding them back.
 
video
 
So with all that said, I just wanted to share a picture of the provision.  Pure abundance.  It is almost embarrassing to put this picture on here.  But, we know clearly God provided and we want to honor Him and have Him praised!  Will you join us in praising Him?
 
 
This is truly nothing but the work of The Lord. 
 

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Gingerbread Houses

We made gingerbread houses today. 
 
In the past, we have always purchased a pre-fab kit.  They taste really gross, so this year I concocted a plan to make gingerbread houses from graham crackers, home made icing and lots of yummies candies.
 
 
Grace and I prepped all the goodies.
 
 
 
Noah even spread the icing.  Maybe he will be the next Cake Boss.
 
 
 
Gloria ... well, she just at the crackers.
 
 
Daddy and Seth worked together ... side note  .. Look at Seth's eye contact --- it is straight on!
 
 
Bub worked with design precision.
 
 
Joy was really concentrating here!  See Gloria still chomping the cracker?
 
 
I wish I could say Gracie stayed this neat.  By the end, I had to send her to the bathroom as she was ringing the icing through her hands ... remember the mention of home made icing?  Butter and sugar - I bet she has the softest hands in the house tonight.
 
 
Sammy did great decorating his little house.
 
 
 
Faith is concentrating too!
 
 
 
Hopie is trying to protect her masterpiece from Leah
 
  
 
 
MASTERPIECES
 
 
(do you see the icing ABOVE her elbows?!)
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Eating their creations.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Birthday Birthday!!!

December is a busy month for us. 
 
We celebrate 4 birthdays in the month of December.
 
Hopie and I were up last week.
 
I turned 41 and she turned 4.
 
 
Cinderella Cookies
 
 
Presents!!!!!!!
 
Cinderella
 
 
Princess with her Cinderella doll in the carriage on her Cinderella bike.
Notice a theme?
 
Yes, her shirt says princess :)
 
 
 

And here I am  ... another year older,
blessed beyond measure

Saturday, December 15, 2012

A Loose Tooth

Faith told me her tooth was loose.  I really thought she was wiggling it and wishing it was loose.  Sure enough, I checked it and it is really loose.
 
She is still a baby!!!!  Time moves tooooo fast.
 
She made her own momento bag.  She wrote and spelled it all herself.
 
 
 
Faith
Tof Bag
For Faith
 
 
 
 
They grow too fast ... tomorrow we will be choosing wedding gowns.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

UPDATE!!!!!! 368 BIBLES FOR ORPHANS

Sorry this is long overdue!!!
 
 
All I can say is WOW!!!!!!  Enough money was donated to buy ....

 
THREE HUNDRED AND SIXTY EIGHT

BIBLES FOR ORPHANS

You helped place God’s Word in
the hands of orphans in Ukraine!

 

In total $1104.00 was donated!!
THANK YOU!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Hotdog Heartbreak

 
Yesterday we went to Costco to finish our Thanksgiving shopping.  When we finished, we were "starving" so we ordered lunch from the Costco food court.  We went to the van, loaded up, everyone got their lunch to eat in the van and we were off.  When all this was said and done, we had an extra hotdog.  ... wonder why ...
 
We started driving and as we approached the first intersection, a homeless man stood there with a sign that said he was hungry.  ... now you know why we had the extra hotdog ... although this was not my plan ... not at all ... 
 
We rolled down the window and gave him the hotdog.  His eyes lit up, he was thankful, he was God Blessing us and genuinely happy that he was given a hotdog.  A hotdog friends ... so thankful for a hotdog. Genuine thanks ... for a hotdog.  A simple hotdog, that with a drink cost $1.50.  This man had the hotdog to his moth before my window was rolled back up.
 
OOOOOHHHHHH   ..... My heart was immediately crushed and the tears flowed.  I had a helper with me and I am sure she thought I had lost my mind, I could hardly speak.  I could literally feel my heartbreaking and my throat hurt ... it was a true grief reaction to the poverty of hunger and homelessness.
 
I had been asking the Lord to break my heart ... but I was not asking Him to break my heart for a hungry homeless man ... I meant He should break it over something else :)   HA.  I wasn't taking about older folks, I wanted Him to break my heart more for little ones. HA HA HA!!! 
 
So, we fastly hatched a plan to deliver some meals today to the hungry and homeless people that frequent the major intersections not far from our home.
 
That evening a friend post this "Hey Houston friends! Looking for somewhere to donate a cooked turkey, appx 16lbs, preferably in the Tomball area. Anyone?"  on Facebook. 
 
A turkey from Heaven!  Oh yeah, the Lord gave us a whole turkey to share!!!!!!!
 
Or friends delivered the Turkey and some yummy pumpkin cookies close to lunch time, we assembled plates, packed a baggie with a napkin, fork and a drink and another bag with a cookie, and away we went!
 
Assembling the cutlery and drink baggies
 
 
 
Working on the baggies of cookies
 
 
 
Making the plates
 
 
 
All packed and ready to go.
 
 
I am pretty sure we have a new family tradition.
 
We looked for the man we gave the hotdog to yesterday, we could not find him.  I wonder if we will ever see him again or if his purpose yesterday was to break our hearts.
 
 
Ask the Lord to break you heart, I dare you! 
 
 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Adoption Made This Possible #2

Adoption made this possible
 
Gloria Walks!
Gloria Dances!
Gloria Laughs!
Gloria Claps!
 
Gloria LOVES!!!
 
 
 
 
video

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Adoption made this possible!!!!!!!!!!!!

Adopting out of birth order made this possible.
 
Adopting a sibling group made this possible.
 
Adopting across "racial" lines made this possible.      
 
The devil uses many lies to stop adoptions - don't let one of these stop you!!! 
 
 
 
These two boys love each other more than I could ever put into words.
 
See how Noah fits in the crook of Bub's arm? 
 
See how Noah melts into him?
 
That, my friends, is love, brotherly love, orchestrated by our Heavenly Father!
 
 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

National Adoption Month

 
Sometimes you see sensational pictures of malnurished orphans  ... but they seem unreal  ...  because you do not know the child.  I hope this makes it real for you. 
 
This is our Seth in July 2011 and November 2012. 
 


November is National Adoption Month
I urge YOU to be THE CHANGE
Adopt, foster, donate, come along side a family already home ... and
PRAY, PRAY, PRAY

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Jesse Tree Ornaments

For several years now we have participated in a Jess Tree ornament exchange.  I am collecting enough sets to pass on to the children when they are grown. 

The Jesse Tree Advent tells the story of Jesus' forthcoming through his lineage starting with Adam and Eve.  It is totally cool!!!!  I am so glad to be passing this on to my kids ... The first year we did the devotions, I leared A LOT about Jesus!!!!!
 
This year we made twenty-five of each ornament pictured below. 

We made
Day 3: Inside the Ark ~~ Symbol: Ark and Rainbow
Day 11: King David~~Symbol: slingshot
Day 23: The Light of the World~~Symbol: a candle
 
 
If your family does not have a daily devotion during the advent season or you wourl like to add to your advent celebrations, I highly recommend the Jesse Tree.  We just love it!
 
We use this book.  I am posting the link through our Amazon Affiliate account.  We like this book because it has an adult reading and a child reading with scripture.  It also has song suggestions.  We use YouTube and sing away.  Honestly, this month of devotions is the best of the year for our family!!!

 
 
If you have little ones that love to color , there are LOTS of free resources on the we.  Here is one. http://www.osv.com/Portals/0/images/pdf/JesseTree.pdf

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Update!!!! Bibles for Orphans!

We are on our way to reaching our goal of $1000.00 for bibles for Orphans.

But we still have a way to go ...

Can  you help?

We need to raise $600.00 in the next 3 weeks! 
 
Orphan Sunday and Samuel's Birthday are just a few weeks away.
In honor of Sammy's birthday and in celebration of Orphan Sunday 2012,
we would like to raise
$1,000.00 for Bibles for Orphans.
They are planning to print and distribute
30,000 Jesus Storybook Bibles to orphans in Ukraine during
Easter 2013.
Celebrate Sammy's million dollar smile!!!
Celebrate his fashion sense!!!!!
.... with a donation in his honor ....
PLEASE?!?
Do you have $5.00, $50.00, $500.00 to spare?
THREE DOLLARS will provide one bible.
Surely most of my friends and relatives have $3.00 to spare ...
$3.00 is a super small price to get the story of Jesus into some one's heart.
Think of what your $3.00 seed could harvest!!!!!!!




BIBLES FOR ORPHANS

You can help place God’s Word in
the hands of orphans in Ukraine!

$3
FOR $3 YOU CAN
GIVE A BIBLE & HOPE TO AN ORPHAN

Partner with Christians in Ukraine to print the Jesus Storybook Bible in their language and distribute it to 30,000 orphans. Believers will personally deliver the Bibles to these children through a network of over 100 churches and 30 Christian organizations already working in orphanages in every region of the country.

The Jesus Storybook Bible will be a valuable tool for churches and believers, equipping them to minister more effectively to orphans who desperately need to hear the gospel message of a loving Father who sent His Son to rescue them and bring them into His family.





You can donate by clicking the link below and making a contribution directly to Bibles for Orphans ... these donations are tax deductible.
Or you can give/send your donation to us and we will make one large contribution after Orphan Sunday. Giving the donation to me, will not get you a tax deduction, but I believe, it will store up a treasure in heaven ;)
If you send a direct donation, would you send me a note telling me you did so and if you are comfortable sharing the amount you donated, tell me that too. I'd like to keep a tally of donations made in honor of Samuel.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Tipi's - Head-dresses and Fry Bread! OH and WAR PAINT!!!!

 
As part of our curriculum, My Father's World - Adventures, we are studying Native Americans this month.  We have a few friends that are using the currirulum too.
 
So ...
 
Today, we built a tipi, made head-dresses, put on war paint and made fry bread.
 

The kids had so much fun - and so did the moms!