Friday, February 27, 2009

Home Ec. 101

Jacob loves to cook...eggs, veggies, cookies, whatever! I guess this counts as home ec. for homeschool, right? Maybe I should move on to the laundry with him...

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Laura's bike

Laura got a new bouncy bike for Christmas, and she's finally getting the hang of it...however, going backwards only. But she is so proud of herself, and she gets the biggest smile on her face as she's moving this thing! You go, girl!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Here's hoping...

...that these came out of the clean-clothing pile!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Adoption Facts

This past week has been very exciting for a couple friends of mine. One received her travel approval and will pick up her new daughter in China in 3 weeks. Another friend just made the wonderful decision toward an adoption. As for us..we still are waiting on the Lord's perfect timing.
Yesterday I ran across a pamphlet from Shaohannah's adoption assistance fund set up by Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman. From this pamphlet came these facts:
1. More than 1/3 of Americans have considered adoption, but only 2% actually adopt.
2. There are over 143 million orphans and fatherless children in the world today who have lost one or both parents.
3. Over 14 million children under the age of 15 have lost one or both parents to AIDS.
4. Children are too often abandoned due to poverty, population control policies, disabilities and cultural traditions that value boys more than girls.
5. Orphans are more vulnerable and at risk of becoming victims of violence, exploitation, trafficking and other abuses.
And here's the one that stunned me:
6. If only 7% of the 2 billion Christians in the world would care for a single orphan in their distress, there would effectively be no more orphans.
Finally, a statistic from UNAIDS/WHO, July 2008:
7. Only 31% of those in developing countries that live with HIV/AIDS receive the medicine they need to live.
1 John 3:17 If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?

Friday, February 20, 2009

The Book of James

I've been reading the Book of James (Jesus 1/2 brother) in the Bible for the past couple days. It's a short book, actually, but full of practical advice for everyday living. And even though it was written almost 2,000 years ago, it clearly applies to today. Several verses really hit me, but this one in particular refers to the tongue which none of us can tame.
James 3:9-10 With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God; from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way.
As I'm thinking about this, and other verses, Charlie is singing, in his own way, another song...Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight. Jesus loves the little children of the world.
Then it came to me...there are so many families who have adopted children from all over this world. These children come from various backgrounds, and have different skin colors. And though these families may face "tongue lashings" from family and friends for this, are they not following God's Word? God never discriminated against anyone because they were of another race, or because they were poor. So why do some, as Christians, still do this? Do they not realize that when they demean a fellow human that they are demeaning the Lord as we are all made in the likeness of Him? Clearly, the tongue is speaking before the heart and mind contemplate the love we are asked to give. Something to contemplate...

Any guesses?

Yes, friends, that is a shoe hanging in Laura's hair. No, I'm not trying to start a new fashion trend. This is just how I found her today when she was supposed to be napping. Anyone care to guess how she velcroed a shoe to her head??

Monday, February 16, 2009

A New Blog Feature

Good Morning! In case you haven't explored my blog lately, take a look in the right column...down under the kids' photos. You'll find a new section called "blogs I follow." These are blogs that I follow daily, written by other moms. They share beautiful and sometimes funny stories about their missions in China, their families, as well as stories about their precious children from Vietnam, Guatamala, China and Ethiopia. Enjoy!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A Few More Steps

Laura walked today. She was standing at the window in Grandma's kitchen and Grandma was sitting behind her. Laura took a couple pivot steps, and then about 5 more steps...totally without prompting...over to Grandma. We were so excited! Even Laura clapped for herself after the first couple steps. So, once again, we know she can's just a matter of time for her to gain confidence in her new mobility. We've noticed her getting stronger, and her therapists are really working on building her core muscles so when she does try to walk, she will be that much stronger and more balanced. Had someone told me 3.5 years ago that Laura still would not be walking, I'd never have believed it. Yet I've never been so excited to see one of my children take those first steps. I can't wait for the day when she can tag along with her brothers!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Odds & Ends

Just some odds and ends photos....
I took my camera when we went out for Thai food last week to celebrate. Too bad I didn't remember to use it until we were leaving the restaurant. The food was wonderful and we had enough for several leftovers!
Jacob unloading his loot from the Valentine party on Monday. He made his castle last week and was so pleased with it. One girl in his class asked why it was so big. Another girl said it looked like a "girl" castle. Fortunately, it didn't burst his bubble too much.
Even though Charlie stayed home sick, Jacob took his Valentine box and brought it home loaded with treats. Charlie was thrilled!
Mom conquered French braids for the first time in Laura's hair. She wiggled a bit...but we did it!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Board Approval

We received word today from our agency that the Thailand Adoption Board has approved our adoption of Amarin! Also, we received our immigration approval in the mail today...a double bonus!! So, we have a few more paperwork hurdles due to the new Hague Laws, and we must wait for an official document to arrive from the social worker in Thailand before we can set our travel dates. So, maybe it will be an April travel time? And here we were hoping to escape this frigid cold to the balmy breezes of southern Thailand...
But even though there seems to be a never ending paper-trail in order to get to Amarin, God's timing is perfect, and I can honestly say that we are not concerned, or feeling the need to try and rush the process. God's hand has clearly been demonstrated in so many ways throughout this adoption process, and we know that He will continue to be faithful, and that we must wait on Him. I think tonight we'll celebrate by going out for Thai food...that was the deal as soon as we received our approval. Bonus...I don't have to cook!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Little fish

Charlie has always loved swimming...even tried the deep end once without floaties! He started swim lessons last Saturday and loved it. He didn't follow everything the teacher when she wanted them to blow bubbles to get used to water in their faces...well, Charlie just dunked his whole head and came up laughing. And when she wanted them to hold the side of the pool and kick their legs, well he added the head-dunk again. And when the instructor was demonstrating the backfloat with the other little boy, Charlie and his girl-buddy were sitting on the ledge. Charlie started scooting himself away from the instructor, and the little girl started following him. he's a ring-leader! We were in stitches, and that made him more animated. Poor instructor...this time it's our child that just has to wiggle and giggle and keep her on her toes!

Only 3 kids in his class!

Not overly fond the back float...

Watch me dunk my head again, Mom!