Friday, September 28, 2007

My New Look!

Isn't it GREAT? I wish that I could take credit but my computer knowledge can get me about as far as posting a picture to my blog. I definitely had help on this one. My dear, dear friend Connie lovingly designed my new look for me. She picked everything...the pictures for the header, the colors, the patterns...everything. And IMO, it came out perfect. I wasn't sure what I wanted but somehow she did and she nailed it. I can't tell you all how Connie has been there for me when I have really needed it. I think the most perfect word to describe her is BLESSING. She is such a blessing to me and to many others as well. The world would be a much better place if more people had hearts as pure and full of love as Connie. Thanks friend!

Joey's on HOLD!

Praise God! His new mama emailed me yesterday and they are very excited to be bringing him home. I am just so thrilled for him and for them. Please remember the other three who still wait in your prayers. Franny turned 9 yesterday and her cleft lip and palate have both been repaired. She is stunning. According to something I read on one of my boards, this could be her last chance at finding her family. Her file will probably not be sent back out once it is returned. The other 2 on SWA's list are younger and are both adorable. Please check them out! www.swa.net

I remember a time after we had returned from China with AnnaClaire that I found myself too emotionally involved with children who weren't finding their families. I had to unsubscribe to all the lists and stop visiting the websites because it was affecting me emotionally and physically. I think I am at that point again. I don't know why I can't guard my heart better. I just can't bear to know that these kids will never know the love of a family. I especially hurt for those with visable special needs because they really have no hope in China. I wish things were different. I wish that every child on earth could know the love of a family.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A Grant for Joey

Little Joey has angels all over the internet doing what they can to find him a home. Last I read, the agency he is listed with has received some calls about him, but so far nothing serious. He currently has a $3300 grant, but it is GROWING! You never know if his family's only hesitation is being able to afford the fees associated with an adoption. Here is how we can donate:


By check:

The family writes a check to Small World
Attach a note that this money is to go toward "Joey's" Adoption

Send to: Small World
9201 S. Madison Road
Valleyford , WA 99036


By Credit Card:

Go to: http://www.swa.net/donations.php
Click on: Piety Fund-Give online now


This donation would be totally tax deductible.
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I also wanted to add that there are three other awesome children listed with this same agency and their files are about to be sent back as well. I pray that none of them have to be returned and that all these angels are 'chosen' ones.

God Bless!

Joey

Please check out the post about Joey on the LWB blog. Just make sure you have a whole handful of tissues first.

When God first started planting the seed of adoption in my heart many years ago, I was intriqued by the idea of giving a child a home and of having another son or daughter to raise but I was very intimidated by the process. I just didn't think that I (one who struggled to get assignments done all throughout my school career) could do the paperwork. And the homestudy (!!!) I can't even tell you how bad I thought that would be. Finally God made it crystal clear that this was His will for us and from the moment on, I was sold. Jeff also knew that God had made it pretty clear that adoption was part of His plan for us, but he spent a couple more years telling God that He had the wrong guy. Jeff didn't think he could do it. That's why I love this song 'I Am' by Ginny Owens (lyrics below). Sometimes we think what God is asking us to do is way too big for us, but if He asks us to do it, He will make sure that we can...if we depend on Him. I am guessing that many people have looked at Joey's picture and thought, if only for a second, 'I could see him in my family' and then let that 'I can't do this!' fear come in. I spent time this morning on my knees in tearful prayer for God's will for this sweet boy. I ask that you please do the same. And listen to what God has to say. I think Joey's family is out there and they just haven't been hit over the head with it yet. They better hurry because he's running out of time.

Is there anything that we CAN'T do when we have God on our side?

I AM

No Lord, he said, you've got the wrong guy
Simple conversation gets me tongue-tied
And you're telling me to speak with a maniac king
Or could it be I've lost my mind

Besides, I am weak, don't you want someone strong
To lead them out of Egypt when they've been there so long
And anyway, they won’t believe You ever spoke to me
It's not your problem, God replied
And the rest is history

’Cause there's a bigger picture you can't see
You don't have to change the world, just trust in Me
'Cause I am your creator, I am working out my plan
And through you I will show them, I Am

Now Lord, are you sure? He's just a shepherd boy
Too small for battle gear with a giant to destroy
What on earth can he do with five stones and a sling
It's not your problem, God replied
'Cause I can do anything

There's a bigger picture you can't see
You don't have to change the world, just trust in me
'Cause I am your creator, I am working out my plan
And through you, I will show them

I am the first, I am the last
I am the present and the past
I am tomorrow and today
I am the only way

Great Lord, she said, I'm just a simple girl
You say that I will bring your son into the world
How can I understand this thing You're gonna do
It's not your problem, God replied

'Cause, there's a bigger picture
And you don't have to change the world (oh no)
I'm your creator, I am working out my plan
And through you, I will show them
There's a bigger picture, you can't see
You don't have to change the world, just trust in me
’Cause I am your creator, I am working out my plan
And through you, I will show them, I Am
I Am

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Moon Festival

Trying to corral the little ones for a picture...um, yeah...good luck with that.

Clearly, we can't afford haircuts OR shoes!


We went to eat Chinese with Aunt Gina and Uncle Daniel (who hates Chinese food, poor guy) to celebrate moon festival. Of course, we had to take 2 cars because we all don't fit in one anymore. I had bought mooncakes at the local Asian market to eat on the deck once we got home. But like it always does, 'life' happened and I remembered the big boys didn't have lunchmeat to pack their lunch tomorrow so I ran by the store on the way home. Either Jeff didn't get the memo about the mooncakes or he just didn't want to be forced to eat the nasty things because when I got home Brady was already in bed. AnnaClaire was still up so I gave her a mooncake. She pigged out bigtime at dinner so I was sure that she would be too full to eat the mooncake and frankly, I didn't think she would like it, but girlfriend ate every last bite. This was Brady's first time at a Chinese restaurant since we got home in May. Our Chinese waitress (from Fujian) tried several times to engage him and he wanted nothing of it. When we were in China, the Chinese people were the only ones who could get him to calm down when he was raging. I guess he truly considers us mom and dad:)

The Power of an M&M


Since Brady has recovered from surgery and is communicating better with us than when we were first home, I figured it was time to attempt potty training. This morning I told both Brady and AnnaClaire that they would get a handful of M&M's each time they use the potty. It has turned out to be a great incentive because both have used the potty more than once today and each has only had one accident. Brady has used the potty EVERY time I have set him on there today. You say the word candy and that kid can BRING IT!!! To have them both out of diapers by the end of the year would be a dream come true.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Oops!

 


Jeff put Brady on the swing and started to push him. About 2 pushes into it, Brady decided that it was NOT fun and let go with one hand to reach back for Jeff. Yikes!
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Just Hangin' Around

 

 

 

 
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Friday, September 21, 2007

Yummy Cupcakes

 


Allie's really into cooking right now. We made a cake from scratch on Sunday and today we made cupcakes from a mix. Last week she actually made the sauce for Chicken Divan. She's a great helper in the kitchen.
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Field Trip!








Allie's class had a field trip yesterday morning so Daddy took her. They went to Warrior's Path State Park and did a creek walk and played on the playground. She had fun:)

Aunt Gina came and took the girls for the afternoon. They always LOVE to go visit Aunt Gina and Uncle Daniel. Brandon is still feeling lousy. Brady and I had to go pick him up at school yesterday afternoon. He is having horrible nosebleeds. He's home today and hopefully will start to feel better over the weekend.

Our new kitchen table arrived! I am excited to finally have a table that will accommodate all 8 of us comfortably. Unfortunately, there was a huge chunk out of the top of the table. I don't know when a new one will arrive and we already moved the old table to the basement. I guess we will be eating on the floor for a while.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Hey Mee All



Thanks for the dry erase boards. I put them all up in the closet except Cameron's. He took his to his room. Big mistake. AnnaClaire's dress and body are both covered in marker. Allie came in and saw it (she was no where near with it happened and AnnaC has already confessed) and asked 'Who did this?' Cameron said, 'I'll give you 2 guesses.' She said, 'ME?' LOL AnnaClaire is now rubbing her feet with the spongy part of a headphone earpiece trying to clean off.

Happy Meal Time






There is a McDonald's right down the street from Allie's preschool and every day when I pick her up she asks for a cheeseburger. I kept telling her no because I didn't want to get McD's while Brady couldn't eat. Since that's no longer an issue, they all got Happy Meals today.

Brandon has felt icky the past couple days. I took him to the doctor this morning and he has walking pneumonia. Poor guy. The doctor said he can still go to school. He stayed home today but plans to start back tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Little Update (I think I have a Mama's Boy!)

We had a pasta dish for dinner because I thought that was a good consistency to get Brady started back on regular food. He usually goes into his highchair before everyone else sits down to eat and tonight was no exception. He had asked for some baby food and was feeding himself pears when I sat down at the table next to him. As soon as my bum hit the chair he handed me the pears and the spoon so *I* could feed him. I thought that was precious. A few weeks ago he didn't want anything to do with me and now he wants me to feed him even when he can do it himself. I know you all are tired of hearing me say it but the transformation in this child is AMAZING. Before surgery he liked mama okay, after surgery he tolerated me occasionally but primarily didn't care for me one bit. Today I can say that this boy ****L*O*V*E*S**** his mama. I can see it, I can feel it, I am sure of it. This boy's mama LOVES him too;)

Look Ma, No Arm Restraints!


Brady has been a JOY all day. He had his appointment with the surgeon this afternoon and even opened his mouth for him. That's huge! The doctor was surprised that the hard palate was still intact and said it looked great. I am glad I didn't know he expected it to come apart or I would have been upset waiting for it to happen. He said that he had originally expected that the hard palate would separate and the soft palate to stay intact, but the reverse happened and it is actually a better situation for Brady. We were able to remove the arm restraints and Brady can eat real food. The doctor wants to see him every month and will decide later when to operate again. We have been real sticklers with the arm restraints so when I took them off, Brady just shook out his little arms with a wide eyed look. When we got home he had half a cookie and then asked for some baby food! LOL

Monday, September 17, 2007

Brady's Halloween Costume arrived today...


and it's so cute! Here's a sneak peek. Please ignore the dirty mouth. We were in the middle of his dinner when we got the wild idea to try the costume on him...and then of course I had to run get the camera;) Speaking of dinner, this kid is eating us out of house and home! He's decided he LOVES baby food and eats 6-8 jars per sitting. At around 50 cents a jar, that gets pretty pricey. Add the Pediasure and his grocery bill is more than the rest of ours combined. His appointment with the surgeon is tomorrow so hopefully he will have a few more options as far as food goes after that visit. He's doing fabulous. We see big smiles from him all the time again and we are so thankful. I am still using the carrier and doing all I can to help him attach. I couldn't be happier with his progress.

Allie is gung ho for a sister her age that she plans to name Sally. Jeff says it's impossible, I say it's improbable. LOL Bless her little heart, she told me she wants a sister her age like Brady and AnnaClaire. I can already see that a special bond is forming between Brady and AnnaClaire. I guess Allie sees it too. She's also asking for a dog or a cat. Poor kid is going to get tired of the word 'no' real soon.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Jeff's new car


I may have not let him name his son after Tiger Woods (seriously!), but now Jeff can drive the car that Tiger promotes-The Buick Enclave (and no, we didn't decide on it because of Tiger-LOL-although that is quite a coincidence). Jeff ordered it last week and it should be here in 4-12 weeks, so I am estimating 16. It has 8 seats so we can travel together as a family again. Yeah!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Dragon Boat Race











Yum Funnel Cake!


Inside the Caterpiller

Friday, September 14, 2007

'Mommy, I love Brady'




Those precious words came from the lips of AnnaClaire. She had been rolling around on the floor with Brady and then came over and proclaimed her love for her little brother. What's truly amazing is that she has never before told me that she loved anyone, not even me, without me saying it first. I've added more pics from yesterday and yes, AnnaC's outfit is Gymboree (Wildflower Fields, I think) and was Allie's. It's actually the outfit Allie wore to have her passport photo made:) Most of AnnaC's clothes are Allie's hand me downs. Lately she has started to notice that Allie and the others get all the stuff when I come home from the store, so I have started buying more for her. She loves it! Heck, she actually WEARS her clothes.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Brady, do you love AnnaClaire?

That is what I asked and this is the response...

 
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