Monday, October 31, 2011

He Missed Me....

But I am trying to make up to him and to my other precious darlings.  They had very little “active” parenting this weekend.  Our videos were their “best friends” for two days.  Us adults (and some great helpers), worked long and hard part of Friday, and all of Saturday and Sunday on our kitchen remodel job.  My parents are so creative and such hard workers.  We could have never done this work without them.  What a  wonderful gift for our family.  Our formica was pretty much shot, so we are so thankful for our new tile counters and back splash.
 Mom, Kalyn and Caresse are almost on the home stretch...counters being grouted!!! And, dog gone it, now that I see the above picture, I sure wish I had of cleaned the side of the stove before they put it back...oh well, that will just be between you and me, O.K.? 

Something almost as awesome as having our TA is happening, I think, tomorrow!!  I’m excited, nervous, and...
well, I’ll have to tell you more tomorrow.  Those little darlings that have been missing me are asking for attention and food.  Not necessarily in that order.  

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Work In Progress

Our Christmas gift is a remodel on our kitchen counters.  Out with the formica and in with BEAUTIFUL tile.

More picture tomorrow.  

Friday, October 28, 2011

Guess What?

I’m getting a Christmas gift this weekend.  No, it isn’t Clive and Noelani, though there is something exciting happening there that I will share later.
My parents are coming today with a gift for us...
it’s pretty major...
I’ll show pictures as soon as I can.
So be sure and sneak a peek later!

Monday, October 24, 2011

I Had A Dream Last Night...

...I dreamed that Steve and I were sitting in a crowded room in China waiting to meet Noelani and Clive.  I was so excited and anxious and I was pretty sure that they were too.  Then some women came in with a bunch of children.  It was so crowded and I was searching for my precious new children.  Then, I saw handsome new son, but I was still looking for Noelani...
Then Keshawn woke me up.
YES, I am ready to bring my children home.  It looks like it will be December now.  

And look at our beautiful family tree...there are so many new leaves of love on it.  We are so grateful for every donation to help us bring home our children.  
Of course, it’s not to late to get a leaf with your name put on our tree!  
And if you can, would you consider sharing our fundraiser with others.  
Thank you for praying our newest darlin’s home!!!

Friday, October 21, 2011

"A cheerful heart will make the task of keeping house pleasant. When you understand that messes are part of living at home, and that cleaning them up is the reason you are there, you can approach them as though they were a matter of fact.  When you realize this is what you are home for, you can approach it as part of your responsibility, rather than as an inconvenience.”
quote from HERE

A very good reminder for me.  I love being blessed to stay home and preform this precious work that the LORD has given me to do.  And children just naturally create, explore, cut up paper, build things, and eat.  

And since I am really checking my thoughts, I saw I was looking at the messes with a critical, self-centered - “More to clean up” attitude.  So, I want to replace that with positive and thankful thoughts.  And I want to again see the “messes” for what they really represent...A home that is loved and lived in by many precious little children that are healthy, happy and living in peace.  When I was in Uganda, one of the beautiful young men that we worked with said to me “Momma, you are can raise your children in peace.  Here in Uganda, we can not do that.  But I pray that one day we can.”
I will always remember that and be thankful for those little messes.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

What Does It Equal?

On one of my normal wake up calls around 2:00 p.m. (Keshawn still loves his night time bottle), I began to think back on how horribly negative the day had been.  It didn’t start out that way, of course.  I didn’t wake up and think “How can I make this day horrible?”  And I’m sure that the children didn’t either, though, I have no evidence for that assumption.  I am quite sure that the IRS, who is still not giving us our tax refund, ARE trying to make my day horrible, but that’s another story.  And since I am working on improving my thought patterns and reactions from critical and negative, well, an eye twitching little laugh may have escaped from my lips into the darkness of the night.  Hopefully Steve just thought I was having a bad dream.  
Some thing so simple came to my mind in the quietness;
Negative Plus Negative DOES NOT equal Positive
When I get stressed, frustrated, overwhelmed or any of those other “bads”, I certainly start doing the math ... their negative gets a negative from me, which equals more negative, and we all know the downward spiral that this gets into.  Negative plus negative just keeps adding up to more negative, for all of us.  
Of course, what I want, and what we all want, is a peaceful, respectful and happy atmosphere.  
And I was reminder of an exercise I use to practice;
Two Positives for Each One Negative

What does that look like?  If I thought of or said something critical or negative, I would make myself go to a private place (outside, or the bathroom) and write out two positives for that one negative.  Let’s say I think something frustrating about a mess a child just made...I would go to the bath room and write out two positives, like “I am so glad that the LORD gave me this child.  I am thankful that she is healthy and fun to be with.”  Then I would get back in the game.  Also something that really helped me; if I felt stressed or overwhelmed, I would go outside, regardless of the weather, breath deeply, and thank the LORD for two things, like the beauty of the trees, and the fresh smell of the air.  This exercise really did strengthen me and gave me a “tool” to use to fight negative or critical thoughts.  

And I really want this.... look like this!

So, I am picking back up this “tool” and will be exercising those thinking muscles.  If you would like to try it, I can tell you it is best if you start out writing down your positives.  
And, I’m EVEN going to go so far as to start out with two positives for our tax frustrations....
1.  I am glad that we live in a time and a country where there are laws to protect our freedom.
2.  I am thankful for the people that are helping us to correct the mistakes that the IRS has made.  
Please, share what helps you....and may we continue to “encourage one another daily” (Heb. 3:13) for HIS GLORY.  

Saturday, October 15, 2011

There May Be Silence....

I was so motivated by sweet mom at Acceptance With Joy and her challenge to not not say anything negative or critical for 14 days, that I signed up for the challenge.  I told her I am sure that I could be a complete success at this IF I could hole up in a beautifully furnished and totally stocked with goodies cabin in the Rocky Mountains for 14 days.  (insert Happy Thought).

BUT, I think that is not the purpose of the challenge is it.  
As I was sitting alone in my bedroom this morning (because the door is closed with warnings to go to daddy if anything is needed), I was listening to our precious Aiden screaming his head off downstairs some where.  He was mad at daddy because Daddy had asked him to stay beside him for a while.  You know the opposite of time out...

Steve has been out of town all week and when he came home I told him that I was sorry that I wasn’t greeting him with a big ol’ smooch and “hello darling, I’m so glad you are home!  I have a wonderful meal cooking, the house is spotless, the children are perfectly clean, and I have romantic plans for later...”
Nope, I’m afraid it was more of a “Hello darling...will you grill the fish I pulled out this morning because I forget to thaw the roast for the slow cook meal that was planned? And will your work allow you to take 3 children to work with you tomorrow? No?  O.K., I will PAY YOU if you will just take Aiden...I think it is time (at 5 years of age ) for him to enter the work force with you.  I bathed the black children...can you get the Asian’s?  I’m sorry that it is only 8:00 p.m., but I am exhausted, can I go to bed, PLEASE????”

Back to the 14 day challenge...I have been seeing that in the “life-ness” of raising our family I have become very “short” and critical without even meaning to.  I want to think and act Biblically, but there is no doubt that many days I don’t.  It is so easy to get into certain thought patterns that are not affirming, loving, patient, kind and the other ways that the LORD shows us how to love in actions and words.  And I want to follow His Love Him First and to Love Others.  I want to accept HIS challenge to GO LOVE.  We need healthy bodies to serve and love, and we need healthy (and Biblical) thought patterns to serve and love.  So, how about you...want to join?  I’ll be sharing some of the “exercises” that I will be using to help improve my thought patterns.  
As always with this blog...I pray that we may encourage and support each other in the ministry  - THE JOURNEY - that the LORD has called each of us too.  And no matter where we are, who we are, how young or old we are, we are ALL called to a ministry of LOVE.  
And I’m hoping that I don’t have to go silent for 14 days....if you don’t hear from me you know that I have taken a vow...

Friday, October 14, 2011

This Precious Mom... working to make a difference and BE the church!!! Let’s join Adeye and help these children come home!!! (not just ours by the way).
Visit her blog here
Thank you all for helping us as we raise the rest of the finances needed to bring home Noelani and Clive.  If you missed our fundraiser, you can read about it here.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Continue - Where’s My Passion?????!!!!!!!!

Thank you for waiting for the rest of my story.  I really did have to go this morning to take care of the children, but it was delightful of you to play along.
I felt that the LORD had spoke two little words to me a few days earlier - “Be Faithful”.  It had settled into my spirit and then this morning I opened up my O. Chambers devotion.  
“After every time of exaltation we are brought down with a sudden rush into things as they are where it is neither beautiful not poetic nor thrilling.  The height of the mountain top is measured by the drab drudgery of the valley; but it is in the valley that we have to live for the glory of God.  We SEE His glory on the mount, but we never LIVE for His glory there.  It is in the sphere of humiliation that we find our true worth to God, that is where our faithfulness is revealed.”
The devotion continues....
“When you were on the mount, you could believe anything, but what about the time when you were up against facts in the valley?  The last time you were on the mount with God, you saw that all power in heaven and in earth belonged to Jesus - will you be skeptical now in the valley of humiliation?”
There were so many “wows” in this for me.  And I asked myself if my faithfulness to the LORD was being revealed today by our circumstances?  It’s so true that there are “highs” on the mountain tops of emotions, passions and experiences.  I knew that the LORD was showing me how to live each day, right now when the passion of emotions isn’t present.  Simply be faithful.  Faithful to each thing that comes up each moment (don’t look at the whole day because that starts getting overwhelming).  Faithful to clean the dishes, fix supper, keep to our home school schedule, remember as I look at my child that “love is patient and kind...”.  
Simply be faithful in the work that the LORD has given me to do.  And I also realized something important to me...those “passions" that I believe the LORD has given to me are still there.  Now, though, instead of relying on the emotions of them,  I have the opportunity to show God through my actions how much I love Him, and believe and trust Him, and how much I want to BE faithful here in the valley - faithfully working this field that He has given to me today.  
(Ideas and thoughts in this study came from Mark 9, Eph. 2:10, Matt. 9:36-38).
So I encourage you each also, to walk in faithfulness to the TRUTH that we know from the Scripture and the teachings of the Holy Spirit.  And may we find encouragement in the fact that our Heavenly Father is FAITHFUL always - and may we, like little children, follow our Father’s example.  

Were’s My Passion!!!!!!!!!

In the quiet, darkness of 5:00 a.m. I reluctantly rolled out of our warm bed with thoughts and prayers on my mind.  I much prefer to stay in our warm bed till 6:30, but the heaviness of certain problems felt crushing and instead of trying in vain to go back to sleep I decided it was better to get up and spend time reading the Bible, praying and asking Him for direction.  
I have felt so “down” lately ... wondering where my normal passion had gone.  Yes, of course, “reasons” could be given - financial tightness, broken things around the house, home educating 8 children, mothering 11, preparing for two new children to come home, Aiden’s SPD, concern that Corbin also has some learning slowness, Landon’s sickenss, Caresse’s shoulder, taking care of the home, meals, chores, laundry....
Yes, many “reasons” could be given.  And, in the “nornal” many would agree that the above list is quite - well - MUCH.  But, I KNEW, that it wasn’t the “much” of it that was getting me down because the much of it was the very reason that we choice to journey with the LORD.  Let me explain that better...plainly put, we started out passionate for children that had no family, no home and we knew what we were getting into when we signed up to follow the LORD on this adventure of ministry that He has for us.  We were and still are passionate to bring home and give a family to those that HE says are our children.  We have not put any number of children limit on the LORD and will continue to passionately open up our home and family to those that He brings.  We are passionate about loving these precious ones as He has taught us to in the Bible.  In fact, the “passion” of it all had long been my emotional mode of transportation.  In other words - what got me through each day.  
And, “dog-gone-it (Texas slong), I still believed that we were working the “field” that He had called us to.  So where was that dadgum (more Texas slang) emotional passion!!!!!  I needed it back. 
I know this is getting long....
do you want me to finish our should I wait till tomorrow?  Do you want to know what the LORD told me?  
LOL - I MIGHT be teasing you a bit....
let me know.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Would You Like To Be Apart Of Our Family Tree?

I am so excited to show you our family’s fundraiser - our Leaves Of Love Tree.  What a beautiful reminder of the love, the tears, the joy, and the work that has gone into bringing home Noelani and Clive.

 I love this fundraising idea.  Here is how it works; every person who would like to donate funds (ANY amount) to help us finance the rest of the adoption to bring home Noelani and Clive will become apart of our Love Makes A Family Tree.

 We will add a finger print for your donation and write your name with the finger print.  
How precious it will be for our children to be able to look at this art work and see all the people who loved them before they even arrived home.  So please help us put some leaves on our tree!!!  And thank you so much!!!  Donations can be received on the side at our PayPal Account or on our ChipIn.
"Noelani and Clive - You are precious and loved by us, and by your Heavenly Father.  It’s almost time to come home my sweet loves!  I can’t wait to meet you both.”

Sunday, October 9, 2011

A Royal Purpose!!!

To look into the eyes of her child and know that God has put a purpose for that child here on earth--to advance the kingdom of heaven-- while glorifying the Father they serve above. Mothers are also put on earth for royal purposes, to raise children for the King; shaping and molding them to become warriors one day for the Lord. Who will not just feed the poor in secret but also help direct and change the course of a nation. History has proven time and time again, that just one person can change the course

Fuentes, June (2011-09-08). True Christian Motherhood (Kindle Locations 65-69). Kindle Edition.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


...these last few weeks have been hard.  And I know that many other families can say the same.  How I pray that we may encourage each other, and lift each other up in prayer.  I haven’t said much, because we haven’t been sure of what is wrong; but Landon has been in the hospital and at the Dr.’s office often the last week.  Something is wrong in his tummy, and we are still searching for answers.  So far the blood work is negative for the “bad” diseases - and that is good.  However, every day Landon is on the couch, moaning in pain, and that is bad. Tomorrow we will have an outpatient surgery looking into other possibilities.   
I hate seeing him in pain, of course, but the other stress for me has been that we just started our new home school schedule and yet, “I can’t do it all”, so the home education has to be put off for now while I take Landon to various appointments.  That means make up some where.  
And here is something interesting in a “oh my gosh, that is a monster”...
...see that mushroom shape sticking out where it says “Here”?  That is the bone spurt that is crippling Caresse’s shoulder.  I’s HUGE!  We are suppose to meet with the 2nd surgeon on the 31st of this month and get a surgery plan in place.  
Now all that is good and all I can think is that “Thank goodness the LORD is in control of all things”, because if things go right Steve and I will be on an airplane to China within a few days of Caresse’s appointment to bring home Clive and Noelani.   (Do you hear my nervous, eye twitching giggle?) .
Also...(there are usually “also’s” aren’t there?)...our leach field has failed (a few thousand dollars to fix), the bladder on our well pump has broke (SEVERAL hundred - but thank you Jesus for friends who are helping us on this one), no tax refund yet...the list is overwhelming sometimes,
HOWEVER, the LORD is always faithful and always provides for His children.  So tonight, we rest in Him and we ask for prayers.  And how can I pray for you this week?  

Monday, October 3, 2011

Have You Seen This?

Have you seen Pixlr?  It is a picture editing program that I downloaded to my computer.  It is a blast!!  And fun and easy.  I like that combination!!!
Have a wonderful Monday!!!!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Go Straight Into The Danger

In order to get to a place called Laity Lodge in Texas you have to drive into a riverbed. The road takes you down a steep, rocky hill into a canyon and straight into the water. There is a sign at the water's edge which says, "Yes. You drive in the river."
One who has made up his mind to go to the uttermost with God will come to a place as unexpected and perhaps looking as impossible to travel as that riverbed looks. He may glance around for an alternative route, but if he wants what God promises His faithful ones, he must go straight into the danger. There is no other way.
The written word is our direction. Trust it. Obey it. Drive in the river and get to Laity Lodge. Moses said to Israel, "I offer you the choice of life or death, blessing or curse. Choose life and then you and your descendants will live; love the Lord your God, obey him, and hold fast to him: that is life for you."
When you take the risk of obedience, you find solid rock beneath you--and markers, evidence that someone has traveled this route before. "The Lord your God will cross over at your head... he will be with you; he will not fail you or forsake you. Do not be discouraged or afraid" (Deuteronomy 30:19, 20; 31:3, 8, NEB). It's what the old gospel song puts so simply:
"Trust and obey, for there's no other way 
To be happy in Jesus but to trust and obey. 
--John H. Sammis”

This devotional by Elizabeth Elliot (source - Keep a Quiet Heart) has been so encouraging to me right now!  It is true that the Bible is our written directions for any situation that we are facing right now!!!  I pray that you are encouraged as well today!!! Happy Sabbath to you all!!!
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