Monday, June 28, 2010

saddle up your horses...for a garage sale?!?

Do you ever have those weeks when you feel like you're treading water? Those times when you have so many things to juggle that you find yourself just trying to make it day to day, sometimes hour to hour? This past week has been precisely that for us! Although craziness loomed, it was a great week, so it wasn't as if I were treading ugly, shark infested water. It was more like treading clear, sparkling water...with great friends, none the less!

What in the world am I talking about and what does it have to do with horses and garage sales?!?

This past week we had Vacation Bible School at our church. I had the privilege of teaching the 1st grade kiddos while we visited "Saddle Ridge Ranch." (That was the VBS theme this year.) I had such a great time playing the role of a cowgirl while helping those precious children learn more about Jesus! It was a family affair, and I wanted to share pictures from our time down at the ranch!

Here's my sweet Ellee on the last day during the final program...

And here's my precious Addie at the program...

We had fun, too!

Everyday last week when we left the ranch, we went home to rest for a little while and then headed off to work on something very, very exciting...


Over the past few months, we have been collecting items from friends and family for a garage sale that we had to raise money for our adoption. I would never be able to find the words to adequately explain how blessed we were by the support we received for this fundraiser. It was such a sweet example of the body of Christ coming together to offer help for one of their own. Donations came in by the truck full - literally - and precious friends from our church family helped every night last week as we sorted, organized and priced! We even had an amazing couple vounteer their house for the garage sale! The kindness that was shown to our family was overwhelming and I am still brought to tears when I reflect on the week!

We had fun playing with the goods...

We shared many laughs...and tears...over the course of the week and the morning of the sale.

The next two pictures are my favorite! Our sweet friends counted the money at the end of the day and wrote the amount down. The first picture is not a's our actual reaction when we opened the paper and saw how much the Lord provided for our sweet baby through the garage sale.

In the end, all the juggling and treading water was absolutely worth it! What a great week of VBS and garage sale fun! We have one "down" week (ha!) and then it's off to youth of my favorite parts of youth ministry!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

father's day

Daddy's girl. Yep, that's me. I think it may even be safe to say that I'm the epitome of a Daddy's girl. I have the most amazing father in the world, but so do my girls! On this Father's Day, I have been thinking about all the things that make my hubby a great dad and all the things that make my dad wonderful, too! I could easily tell you 50 things I love about these two men, but I'll stick with 5!

Five things I love about my dad:

1. I can talk to him about anything! Believe it or not, he's the one that gave me the "talk." Yes, the one about the birds and the bees!

2. He can read me like a book. Somehow, Dad always knows if something is bothering me.

3. He is always supportive of me and my decisions, even if he doesn't agree with them.

4. I have never, not for one single moment in my life, doubted his love for me!

5. I love the way Dad laughs (hysterically!) at his own jokes - usually before he has finished telling them!

Five things I love about my hubby as "Daddy":

1. He has never minded changing diapers or giving baths.

2. He makes ordinary things - like going to bed - lots of fun by offering piggy back rides or airplane expeditions!

3. He takes the girls to Target - by himself - just to walk up and down the toy aisle.

4. He doesn't just give the girls the "easy" answers. He always takes the time to explain things to them and teach them.

5. He adores our girls and they adore him! He is truly their Prince Charming!

Happy Father's Day!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

waiting to wait

Well, it looks like we've made progress in the adoption process, but there's still so much yet to do! Last time I updated you, we were up to our eyeballs in paperwork and documents for the home study.

The good news....OUR HOME STUDY IS COMPLETE AND APPROVED!!! This is a huge deal and we're beyond excited to have it behind us!

The bad news...our waiting time will be longer than anticipated. In a perfect scenario, we would be put on a waiting list for a referral upon completion of our home study. This simply means we would be waiting to be "matched up" with a child. (Sounds funny to say but we are completely confident that God is sovereignly working all things together and He already has a child set apart for our family!) I'm told that waiting for your referral is one of the most difficult parts of adoption and receiving the call that you have a referral is one of the most exciting parts! Unfortunately, we will not be put on a waiting list immediately even though our home study is complete. For whatever reason, there are an unusual amount of people right now that are waiting for referrals from Korea. Apparently Korea has been slower than normal in sending referrals.

Bottom line - we are waiting to be put on a waiting list!!

Once we are finally put on the list for a referral, we should expect a waiting period of 4-6 months to receive our referral. Are you picking up on a theme word for our family right now?!?


So what are we doing while we wait?

PRAYING. A few nights ago while we were praying with the girls before bed, Ellee said, "Lord, please be with Baby K until we can bring him home. Please keep him safe and we just love him so so so so so so much!" She brought me to tears. Baby K is already so much a part of our family, even though we don't know who he is. He is loved by people that have never seen him or touched him. He already has a deep love from a father and mother! I cannot wait to bring my baby boy home!

I will let you know when we are officially "waiting!"

Saturday, June 12, 2010

popcorn balls and sprinkler fun

Summertime has arrived! For the first time, I am experiencing the joy of summer that comes with school-aged kiddos because our oldest just completed Kindergarten. Because I am "one of those" that finds comfort in planning and organization, I have all kinds of plans for the girls this summer. :) We started on the list a few days ago and here are some pictures from our fun...

One of our projects is cooking together! Both of the girls love being in the kitchen helping me, so I thought it would be fun to find some recipes they could cook up together with little help (but lots of supervision!) from Mommy. We started with popcorn balls - a recipe I stumbled across HERE on a blog that I love! We improvised a little, and the girls loved making these!

Another part of our summer plan is to spend a lot of time outdoors. We bought a new sprinkler-toy-thingy a few days ago and the girls could not wait to play with it! (amazing how much fun $10 can get you) I'm not sure if you can tell from the pictures, but the girls enjoyed their new form of entertainment in the rain! Afterall, they were going to get wet anyways, right? I'm sure this new gadget will be used a lot this summer...

Happy Summertime!!

Monday, June 7, 2010

bless the Lord, o my soul

This morning as I was spending time in God's Word, I ran across a note in my Bible that I wrote last year. I was reminded of how precious the year 2009 was to me and how I am forever changed because of it. This was, by far, the most difficult year Lee and I have ever faced together and possibly one of the most difficult times of my 30 years of life. Many of you know the story and it's somewhat complicated to explain, but the short version goes like this:

Lee resigned from his position at our church in January of 2009. There are many things that led up to this, but it was a decision that was very difficult to make. He was not asked to resign, and there had been absolutely no "wrong doing" on his part. After all, my husband is one of the most noble men I know!! :) None the less, with total confidence that we were doing what God desired of us, Lee resigned with no possibilities on the horizon. For the entire year, we faced each day with expectation and hopeful hearts. Lee worked hard - sometimes 3 jobs at a time - to provide for our family and by God's grace, we sold our house during this time and my sweet in-laws took us in! In February of 2010, the Lord brought this particular trial to a close and revealed His next step for us.

I can honestly say that although this was a difficult time in our life, God's grace was sufficient. Of course there were moments that I broke down, but praise God, they were only moments. I experienced such joy during this trial because I was resting peacefully in the arms of my Father. My hope was found in Isaiah 40:31 where God promises to renew the strength of those that wait on Him. He was so faithful to His Word and my strength was daily renewed by Him.

The note I found this morning was written beside Psalm 103: 1-5. It says, "Bless the Lord, O my soul and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's."

The note I wrote says, "Even in the trials, I have so many reasons to praise the Lord!" This scripture gives so many reasons to praise our Father and none of them are based on circumstances - they are all based on God's unchanging character!

Bless the Lord, O my soul!!