Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Here is R pulling A in the sled with the horse. That's my horse, Lady.
Here's a closer view. This is redneck sledding. At our other house we used to sled down the neighbor's hill. There were rocks and frozen cow pies that were a lot like rocks when you hit them. Now if we can get enough snow to somewhat cover the ground, this is how we sled.
Lillybet was pretty frisky. Here she's saying don't mess with me.
This is how she tries to engage the dogs in play (play fighting).
This is R pulling A's friend E.
Yeah, we gave the dogs and the goat a ride too. They weren't having as much fun as the kids were.
Now A is giving R a ride in the sled. You can tell the snow is giving out.
That's because there were so many holes in the sled that the snow just kept getting scooped up into it. We have a video of R bailing the snow out of the sled as she goes along. It reminded us of Jack Sparrow bailing his little boat out. This is what's left of the sled.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
A came home saying they had good shows. The audience for the first show wasn't that great, including someone puking on the stage. Eww. Glad I missed that. Thankfully the girls missed that too. The other audiences were great. She also said that she and R were invited to go on the "touring" show. They get to travel out of town, work at a different theater, stay in a hotel, and do 2 or 3 shows and miss another day of school in the process. She is pumped about all of that.
We got our confirmation emails today that we are in fact poor enough to receive federal aid for R's college. We kind of figured this all along but, yay! She also brought home several scholarship applications yesterday. You go girl! Oh, she sent in a poem for a scholarship and she didn't win the scholarship but they want to publish her poem. How cool is that? She wanted to be published by 17 and while this isn't exactly what she had in mind, she will be published by 17.
The weather went from near 60 and chances of storms this morning to 38 and chances of snow by noon. They are still talking about snow. I wish it would snow 6 inches. We need to make those snowmen so the girls can practice jousting and fire the tater cannon.
Sunday, February 24, 2008
Church was good. I got a break leading worship. That kind of revs me back up when I can have a day off. Just "fill up" instead of constantly putting out.
I came across this verse today, and it's not a Psalm. How about that? 1 Peter 5:10 "And the God of all grace, Who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast." I feel like I've been suffering for quite a while now and I love that God will restore me and make me strong, firm and steadfast. Knowing that helps somehow.
We as parents don't want our children to hurt. A was sharing about a time when she was crying and she prayed that the Lord would show her that He was there and her cat came along and licked her tears and snuggled up with her. When she told us that, I hurt that she was hurting to the point of tears but I was thankful that God used a silly cat to minister to her. I guess if He can use Balaam's donkey He can use A's cat. I don't want J to hurt either. I wonder how many times he has shed tears wondering if we are ever coming to get him. Maybe that's some of the pain that I felt yesterday. He asks nearly every time we talk to him when we are coming to get him. It breaks my heart and I hurt because he does. You know what though, it hurts more when he doesn't ask because I'm afraid he has given up hope. Lord, please let this waiting come to an end and bring J home to his family. Please keep praying with us.
Saturday, February 23, 2008
T is sick again. Two man colds a week apart. Poor guy. And he takes it personally when I don't want to kiss him.
I finally gave in a bought J some tennis shoes. I'm sending them down with another mom in a couple of weeks. I kept hoping that we'd be going to get him soon. I've been thinking that for 8 months now. It seems like some cruel joke. I'm not laughing. Anyway, I found some in blue but I thought they were too big. Then I found some Transformer ones in a better size and they were on clearance. So I got him a couple of Transformer toys to go with them.
The girls' newest play opens on Tuesday with school shows. I like it when they finally open and the crazy practice schedule lets up. This one hasn't been too bad though.
That's all for now.
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
I read books like that and I just want to bring our son home. Is that so much to ask? Is it wrong to want him home? I'm very frustrated with the adoption process. This is the longest we've gone with no forward movement since we started. It's absolutely crazy. It makes no sense whatsoever. We're supposed to be so close to the end and nothing happens. Day after day, week after week, month after month. Please, just pray for us. Pray for forward movement. Pray for stamps and signatures. Pray for a passport, visa and DHS approval. I don't know what to do with these feelings. It's like an overwhelming helplessness, hopelessness.
Here are a few pics from the dance. We couldn't use flash and when we don't use flash and try to zoom in a bit, the pics come out blurry. So here is a somewhat dark and blurry pic of my parents on the dance floor. Aren't they cute?
And here is one with dad on the left dancing with a friend and mom and A are dancing on the right. There were a few dance instructors there and A danced with one of them. She also danced with G'pa and G'ma. On the way home we asked A who was easier to dance with, G'pa or the instructor. Without missing a beat she said, G'ma. They do look like they're having fun.
Lori and Licia show gross pics sometimes of their clinic in Haiti. I thought I'd show a few gross pics. Remember last week I said we get out a yardstick sometimes and sweep it under furniture and appliances to get the cat toys out. Here is a pic of the totally fur covered screw that came out from under the piano. It looks like we should name it.
And here is R with another injury. She's smiling again and we don't know why.
Actually, we do know why. Relax. It's theater paint. Gotcha! They are studying make up in her drama class. So far she has been an old person and an injured person. Trust me, it washed right off.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
When we got home A decided to spend the night at a friend's house since they are off school tomorrow for President's day. R and J (maybe I should call him BF for boyfriend since we already have a "J") took her over. J called while they were gone and we got to talk to him. T had the webcam set up even though it uses up a lot of bandwidth. I read a book to him and he asked about his blue tennis shoes. We lost the connection before I got to tell him I loved him. He's so cute.
T, R and BF practiced archery. Lillybet the goat was right there with them. She ran back and forth with them as they got the arrows. We've been leaving her loose around the house while we're there and she hangs around just like a dog. Later, another friend came and dropped off some computers for T to work on and Lillybet met her at her car with one of the dogs. She thought it was so funny and said, "This is so 'Foxworthy'. You have a goat that greets people at their cars." I wonder if we could get her a job at Wal-Mart greeting customers. T said she had been on the front porch and when the car pulled up she put her front feet up on the table in front of the window and looked in at him and started hollering like she was telling us we had company. We stood out there and talked for a while and Lillybet was making some strange noises. T checked on her and she came back over to where we were standing. Apparently she got bored with us rather quickly and apparently Trixie (R's dog) was in her way. She decided to go under the dog even though she is the same height. She just kept pushing and Trixie was looking at her like, what are you doing?! She picked Trixie's entire back end off the ground and just kept pushing until she got through. Goats are so funny.
I just got finished watching Extreme Makeover Home Edition. Did anyone else see that? What an amazing and inspirational young man. When he was singing "I Believe" at the end I was in tears too. T's sister lives in AL and they do construction work. They were able to work on an Extreme Makeover house recently.
Well, even though I led worship at church this morning and did a few loads of laundry and walked on the treadmill, I definitely feel like today was a day of rest. It was a good day.
Saturday, February 16, 2008
I had fun with my daughter today. At least as fun as grocery shopping and then letting her blow some birthday money can be. If A is in a decent mood, most things with her are fun.
Last night was fun too. We went to a dance. We're not really dancers but we wouldn't mind learning. My parents are pretty good dancers. I got to dance with my dad and that was fun. He wasn't feeling the best so we weren't sure he would go, but he did. T and I dancing together looks pretty funny but with my dad, he's good enough that I don't look so bad. Things that happened at our table were pretty funny too. One guy was leaning forward to sit down and his tie slipped over the back of someone's chair. Just at that time the person leaned back catching the guys tie. The comedic timing was perfect. We happened to know both people so we found it particularly funny. Then T took a sip of coffee and choked on it, blowing it all over this other couple. He was mortified that he'd done that. Thankfully, they took it in stride.
I better do a thankful list. It always makes me feel better. Let's see, I'm thankful for the fun and laughter of last night. I'm thankful that payday was this week. I'm thankful for our house and the people and things in it. I'm thankful for a God who loves me and is faithful even when I'm not.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
We haven't heard a thing yet this week. I wish the "powers that be" in Haiti had the tiniest inkling of how much this hurts. Of how much the waiting hurts. It just seems so senseless. I know the week is not over but we're awful close to Friday without hearing anything. Days turn into weeks, weeks into months and months into years. It's so hard.
I spend a LOT of time in the Psalms. In fact, other than my Bible study and a few places in Romans, I pretty much read Psalms. They are comforting to me. I'll share a few more of my favorites. Several parts (though not all) of Psalm 37 "Don't be worried on account of the wicked; don't be jealous of those who do wrong. They will soon disappear like grass that dries up; they will die like plants that wither. Trust in the LORD and do good; live in the land and be safe. Seek your happiness in the LORD, and he will give you your heart's desire. Give yourself to the LORD; trust in him, and he will help you; he will make your righteousness shine like the noonday sun. Be patient and wait for the LORD to act; don't be worried about those who prosper or those who succeed in their evil plans. Don't give in to worry or anger; it only leads to trouble. Those who trust in the LORD will possess the land, but the wicked will be driven out. The LORD guides us in the way we should go and protects those who please him. If they fall, they will not stay down, because the LORD will help them up. I am old now; I have lived a long time, but I have never seen good people abandoned by the LORD or their children begging for food. At all times they give freely and lend to others, and their children are a blessing. Turn away from evil and do good, and your descendants will always live in the land; for the LORD loves what is right and does not abandon his faithful people. He protects them forever, but the descendants of the wicked will be driven out. The righteous will possess the land and live in it forever. Put your hope in the LORD and obey his commands; he will honor you by giving you the land, and you will see the wicked driven out. I once knew someone wicked who was a tyrant; he towered over everyone like a cedar of Lebanon; but later I passed by, and he wasn't there; I looked for him, but couldn't find him. The LORD saves the righteous and protects them in times of trouble. He helps them and rescues them; he saves them from the wicked, because they go to him for protection." This one basically tells me to trust in the Lord, not in men, and to wait patiently for Him and He will take care of things.
Another favorite is (parts of) Psalm 42 "As a deer longs for a stream of cool water, so I long for you, O God. I thirst for you, the living God. When can I go and worship in your presence? Day and night I cry, and tears are my only food; all the time my enemies ask me, "Where is your God?" May the LORD show his constant love during the day, so that I may have a song at night, a prayer to the God of my life. To God, my defender, I say, "Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go on suffering from the cruelty of my enemies?" I am crushed by their insults, as they keep on asking me, "Where is your God?" Why am I so sad? Why am I so troubled? I will put my hope in God, and once again I will praise him, my savior and my God." This one basically tells me to seek after God, to thirst for Him, to hope in Him.
I also like parts of this one. Psalm 40 "I waited patiently for the LORD's help; then he listened to me and heard my cry. He pulled me out of a dangerous pit, out of the deadly quicksand. He set me safely on a rock and made me secure. He taught me to sing a new song, a song of praise to our God. Many who see this will take warning and will put their trust in the LORD. Happy are those who trust the LORD, who do not turn to idols or join those who worship false gods. You have done many things for us, O LORD our God; there is no one like you! You have made many wonderful plans for us. May those who make fun of me be dismayed by their defeat. May all who come to you be glad and joyful. May all who are thankful for your salvation always say, "How great is the LORD!" I am weak and poor, O Lord, but you have not forgotten me. You are my savior and my God--- hurry to my aid!"
And I read this one about once a week or so. Psalm 34 "I will always thank the LORD; I will never stop praising him. I will praise him for what he has done; may all who are oppressed listen and be glad! Proclaim with me the LORD's greatness; let us praise his name together! I prayed to the LORD, and he answered me; he freed me from all my fears. The oppressed look to him and are glad; they will never be disappointed. The helpless call to him, and he answers; he saves them from all their troubles. His angel guards those who honor the LORD and rescues them from danger. Find out for yourself how good the LORD is. Happy are those who find safety with him. Honor the LORD, all his people; those who obey him have all they need. Even lions go hungry for lack of food, but those who obey the LORD lack nothing good. ...The LORD is near to those who are discouraged; he saves those who have lost all hope. Good people suffer many troubles, but the LORD saves them from them all; ..." This tells me that God hears and answers my prayers. That He rescues me and saves me when I've lost hope.
Have you checked out the other blogs I read? The Rollings picked up their baby and things are going well for them. Lots of things (mostly good) happening with Tricia and Gwyneth. Check them out.
I am still praying for good news this week and definitely still surrendered to God's will.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
It's still spitting snow but the sun is trying to come out. I took a few more pics that I wanted to share;
This is our creek that runs when it rains a lot. We had a lot of rain yesterday.
This is the other side of it before it goes under the driveway. A used to float Barbies through the culvert but when one got stuck she decided to tie strings onto them. Anyway, I wish you could hear the water trickling over the rocks. It's so pretty.
And here is the house.
I have chilblains on my toes again. A gets them too. They are sores that have something to do with circulation in our feet and going from cold to hot. It's explained better here;
http://www.epodiatry.com/chilblains.htm I've gotten them since my teens. Every winter except the winter I was pregnant with A. A started getting them last winter.
The kids have already been out a couple times and found enough snow to make slushies. They also took these pics;
This is A. She likes to do those self portraits.
Here is Trixy blinking in the snow.
I love the look on Oreo's face here.
Oreo is surveying the front yard from "Pride Rock".
This is the backyard a little earlier. It's actually 10:30 now. I started this post a couple hours ago. The pics take a while to upload and the kids keep bringing new ones in plus I've had several phone calls.
Here is Lillybet in her first snowfall. She is running around outside. She'll probably be on the porch swing soon.
Here are the horses in pasture #3.
Here are some birthday pics. This is A with her friends.
This was Monday night with family. She is showing her new purse.
Here is the angel holding the cat.
Because she had a cold we made her use a candle snuffer so she wouldn't blow her germs all over the cake. At least she got to blow out the ones with her friends. They were all sick anyway.
Here she is snuffing the candles.
And right afterwards.
One of her friends had balloons sent to her at school. Isn't that sweet? Dexter has a thing for balloons and will bite them until they break. He was very interested in those balloons.
We figured if he bit them and breathed the helium his meow would be real high pitched.
Well, R is painting and it's still snowing. I need to get in the shower and then make brownies for church tonight. I figure there won't be many people there though, but you never know. I'm still hoping for enough snow to make snowmen. T went to work but I bet he'd come home if A told him she wanted to blow up her snowman with the potato cannon. Goofy people.
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Happy Birthday to A!! She had party number 2 last night. Friday was the friends party and last night was family. She was happy to get shoes, a purse with lots of bling, the willow tree angel with the kitty and of course money. Money always makes them happy. Oh, and she got a "Fashion Diva" sign for her room. We are getting ready to do a little makeover in her room so it looks more like a 15yo's than a 10yo's. I can't believe we've lived in this house almost 5 years. Time flies whether you're having fun or not.
It's rainy and windy today. My dad finished up the fencing yesterday and moved the horses today, in between rain showers. They seem pretty happy about the new territory. Sometimes we stop to talk to them when we drive up the driveway and they (well, Bridget) talk back to us, or at least show a little interest in us. I tried to talk to them today and they were too busy eating to even look at me.
I've spent a LOT of time in the Psalms during this whole adoption process. One that was brought to my attention at our prayer time Sunday night is Psa 82:3-4 "Defend the rights of the poor and the orphans; be fair to the needy and the helpless. Rescue them from the power of evil people." I love that. Another one that I read often is Psalm 20 "May the LORD answer you when you are in trouble! May the God of Jacob protect you! May he send you help from his Temple and give you aid from Mount Zion. May he accept all your offerings and be pleased with all your sacrifices.
May he give you what you desire and make all your plans succeed. Then we will shout for joy over your victory and celebrate your triumph by praising our God. May the LORD answer all your requests. Now I know that the LORD gives victory to his chosen king; he answers him from his holy heaven and by his power gives him great victories. Some trust in their war chariots and others in their horses, but we trust in the power of the LORD our God. Such people will stumble and fall, but we will rise and stand firm. Give victory to the king, O LORD; answer us when we call." My favorite parts from this one are "May he give you what you desire and make all your plans succeed" and the part about "Some trust in their war chariots and others in their horses, but we trust in the power of the Lord our God." I've come to the realization that I can't trust in people to do their jobs or to do the right thing but I can always trust in God. Even if I feel like people aren't doing their jobs (like signing the papers!) ultimately if God is in control, and I believe He is, He doesn't need them to do His work. He does work through human beings but He also performs miracles. I have to trust that if the time were right for J to be home, then he'd be home. I have to believe that God loves him more than I can and He has J's best at heart. I also think there should be laws and accountability and maybe legislation to be able to apply for US passports for our adopted children. That's what we're waiting on right now. Even though J has been legally adopted by us in Haiti, we have to wait for a Haitian passport to be able to put him on a plane to come to the states. We've been in the process for 29 months now and waiting on the passport 8 1/2. Maybe that's all part of the "why" of the wait for us (working towards the legislation for adopted children). It's definitely something that's on my mind.
Another Psalm that I go to often is Psalm 43 "Judge me, O God, and plead my case against an ungodly nation. Rescue me from deceitful and unjust people. You are my fortress, O God! Why have you rejected me? Why must I walk around in mourning while the enemy oppresses me?
Send your light and your truth. Let them guide me. Let them bring me to your holy mountain and to your dwelling place. Then let me go to the altar of God, to God my highest joy, and I will give thanks to you on the lyre, O God, my God. Why are you discouraged, my soul? Why are you so restless? Put your hope in God, because I will still praise him. He is my savior and my God." I feel like this one is asking God to rescue J. I've had some discouraging and depressing times in this adoption process and have asked God for light and truth. I love that it says "Put your hope in God, because I will still praise Him." There is that recurring theme of "praising God anyway!" So, I guess I'll end with another thankful list. Let's see, I'm thankful for washers and dryers (guess what I'm doing right now?) I'm thankful for young minds and having the time to volunteer to teach Abstinence. I'm thankful for pets and the joy they bring. I'm thankful for flannel sheets. I'm thankful for the way God's word speaks to me. I'm thankful for dark chocolate (have I listed that one before?). I'm thankful for a hubby who loves me and a church family who prays with us.
Praying for good adoption news this week yet surrendered to His will.
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Saturday, February 9, 2008
The girls are practicing for their current play in which they are animals. R is a sheep and A plays more than one animal, including a sheep. They are "baaaing" all the time. Goofy kids.
A had a birthday party sleepover last night. The kids were all sick with the funk that's going around and were asleep by 8:30 and slept until 8 this morning. Then they sat around. They did actually play some games and act alive yesterday evening. I found out when I got home from work that A was running a fever today. She's fine otherwise. The other two kids were coughing, like T. He is still coughing a lot too (poor little bunny) but his voice is closer to his normal sound.
My dad, T, R and R's boyfriend have been working on fencing in more pasture for the horses. They are just about done with it. R let Lillybet loose while she was out there. Lillybet follows her like a dog would. It's pretty funny really. Apparently she got tired so she came up on the porch and jumped up into the porch swing. A took some pics that I'll try to post soon.
Well, I mostly wanted to tell you about the movie "Flywheel". See it if you can. If you know us in person, we'll be happy to loan both "Flywheel" and "Facing the Giants" to you. Tomorrow is another busy day with church, meetings, and the prayer time in the evening. Tonight I still have to do an order of service, make cookies (I got an order for some today) finish the laundry and run lines with R. Stay well and join us in prayer Sunday evening if you can.
Thursday, February 7, 2008
T has a nasty man cold ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXLHWmjA5IE -I first saw this on the Livesay's blog). He tried to blame it on me but I had a sinus infection, not a cold. I didn't have a voice that was 5 octaves lower than usual and endless coughing. No, he has something different that I've not had (yet anyway). Hopefully I won't get it. If he would quit coughing in my direction and breathe his own air, I'd be okay. He has seen the "man cold" clip and thought it was funny.
Not much going on here. T is at a meeting tonight (I guess he can cough on them this evening). The girls are home. Yesterday was busy with my make-up classes for abstinence, R had school and work, A had play practice after school, then we had church and praise team practice. The store was really busy today but it's really quiet here right now. The cats aren't even fighting.
I think about J's winter clothes now and then and wonder if I'm going to have to pack them up too and get summer ones back out before he gets home. Lord, when will the waiting end for us? It all seems so senseless. I hope there is a reason for the waiting. It kind of scares me to think that I'm going to need that much patience or that much faith for something in the future. I hope there's a reason that's bigger than just us though. At least I think I do.
Okay, I think I better do a "things I'm thankful for" list. Let's see. I'm thankful for my hubby and for the children that God has entrusted to us. R is in the top 10 of her senior class of over 175 students. I'm thankful for dark chocolate (have I brought that one up before?). I am thankful that the cars are running this week. I'm thankful that we didn't have any damage in the storms Tuesday night. I'm thankful for a job. I'm thankful for music and that way it moves people. I'm thankful for a God that I can "praise anyway."
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Since we don't have good adoption news, I thought I'd share some pictures of the zaniness of our lives. I've spent about two hours uploading and arranging these pics. Enjoy!
This is A's dog Oreo. She sits cocked way back like that all the time. It's too funny. And then she rests her head on one of the railings and surveys her kingdom.
Here is another pic of Oreo. Don't you love her black nose surrounded by the white?
This is R's dog, Trixy. We think this point of view looks like the cards with the pics of animals where their heads are out of proportion with their bodies.
R has taught Lillybet to dance on her back legs. We need to get her a tutu.
This looks like they are doing a finely timed dance.
Aren't they cute?
Lillybet, Lillybet, oh Lilly, Lillybet. Lillybet. (pop) (sung to the tune of "Lollipop")
Sanome likes to be near me. She is actually R's cat but she likes to be with me at the computer or on my back when I'm trying to read. Silly cat. She's nice and warm though.
These two cats are liking this chair lately. If T is not in it, they are.
Then again, Dexter will curl up anywhere he takes a fancy to. Here he is in a basket in the girls' bathroom.
This is A and her friend E. They both love the theater and excell at drama. They decided to do their makeup to look like a picture of a chipmunk that they had.
This is E showing the pic of the chipmunk. They did a good job, didn't they?
A is all about fashion. She likes to put different outfits together and is always cutting and sewing her clothes to get what she wants. I think the gloves are a great look here.
See, she likes to look at things from a new perspective. This is a tilted, reflected funny face.
Here, she spun around in a circle and took a self portrait. See, it takes a creative mind to think of these things. She never ceases to amaze us.
I wish you could see her eyes better here. They are definitely crossed.
So that's what's going on in our world. What's going on in yours?