Saturday, May 28, 2011

One week!

Remember my whiny post last week about the craziness of, well, life?

This week was no exception.

Starting with, SUMMER VACATION. 

Which is great for some children, terrible for others who need structure, schedules, consistency.

Apparently all things I stink at.

Then came a call that Mark's brother's house BURNED DOWN.

Praise God no one was hurt.  Including the dog.  Who was in the house, in her cage.

Yesterday we went to load into the van and realized that a window was shattered. All inside the van and all over our driveway.  A million pieces shattered.   We assume either hail or our basketball goal fell into it from the winds we had this week.

Not a huge deal, but a few hundred dollars and just a whole lot of hassle. Shockingly windows for church bus size vans are not just sitting around waiting to be installed.

Our hearts continue to hurt for our sweet boy in China who is still in the hospital from burns.  His mama is struggling and we feel so far away.

But VERY soon I will be there!  Prayerfully we will be able to see him somehow.  I can't wait to give him and his mama a big ole hug!

So all of this life stuff going on?  Just taking it day by day.  Keeping my focus on what is waiting.

Well, besides a bazillion hours of plane rides.  Trying really hard NOT to think on that.

Thinking of the children and the places the Lord has called us to.

In just one more week!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Help Bring Alivia Home!

Besides getting a child through adoption, one of the greatest gifts we are given is friendships with people we would have probably never met.  Kathy & I were matched as "secret pals" during my wait for Sage & her wait for her 3rd daughter from China.  She lives just a few hours away from me, so we have been able to get together on many occasions, and have just formed such a great friendship through the years. 
They have once again been called back to China for their 6th adoption! Isn't Alivia beautiful?  After 5 other adoptions you can imagine trying to come up with the money for another. But they know that the Lord has led them to their daughter, and they know He will provide.  Please take a look at their blog at all the ways you can help them in bringing home sweet Alivia.

Monday, May 23, 2011

How you can help the orphans!

In 11 DAYS we board our first plane towards China.  ELEVEN DAYS!!!!  

264 hours. 

We have been AMAZED at the donations we have received.


And so anxious to bless the orphans, the nannies, and the directors.

God has, once again, blown me away through each step of preparing for this trip. 

Many continue to ask what we still need.

There are a few things.  We thank you in advance.

For Children & Infants
  • Laxatives
  • Gummy Vitamins
  • Infant Vitamin Drops
  • Diaper Rash Cream
  • Antibacterial Creams
  • Cleft Bottles for cleft lip babies
 For the Nannies
  • small packets of Starbucks Coffee
  • nice ink pens
  • small travel size deoderant
  • small bath and body lotions & soaps, men & women
  • Ginseng
  • Fish Oil Capsules
  • Cash that we will use towards our orphanage donations. We are visiting 3 different locations! 
If you are able to help out, please let me know ASAP.  We are trying to get it all packed! Again we thank you SOO much!  Not everyone is able to adopt, but what a gift to see so many willing to step up and help the orphans!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Crazy Days

I want to continue with my Summit posts. I don't want to forget all that I heard. It helps me to write.

But life! Let me share just one day this week. That started the day before.

My aunt was taken to the hospital with chest pain.

I got a call that the baby we had custody of last summer was badly burned. 10% of his body, 2nd degree burns.

Mark was out of town.

I stayed up all night praying.

Girls had fun day at school.

We went from there strawberry picking.

Then on to the doctors office to get some medical records for the baby we still have custody of, though he now lives in China.

From there the girls had gymnastics try outs at a new gym.

Then we got to go to the Apple Store to get Makenna's IPOD fixed. Again.

By this time of the day I had apparently lost all sense of well anything and attempted to get a bit of shopping done since we were already out.

With 5 kids.

Who had not had good naps and 1 of which is never easy to shop with.

We gave up on shopping. We came home.

I was exhausted and oh so tired and having a pity party for myself.

I was reminded of this. If the Devil is not attacking then we are probably not doing anything to get his attention.

I love that!

Well, not the being attacked by the devil part. But the fact that I AM getting his attention. And He is so ready to swoop in and steal my joy.

Joy from hearing so much at the Summit. Joy I am ready to put into action.

Joy at the piles of "Stuff" piled in my room. Stuff that is going to bless orphans!

Joy at the suitcases I am tripping over. Suitcases that will hold JOY & Blessings in just 2 weeks!

I will get back to writing about Summit.

And I will pack with out stressing out.

Maybe. ;-)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Orphan Summit Part 2

I think one of the biggest things that God placed on my heart this weekend at Summit was this.

There is SO much more to orphan care than adoption.

Not that I did not know that. Not that Mark has not reminded me of that DAILY or hourly or whenever I bring up adding more.

And not that adoption is not important. It is, it REALLY is.

But, there are 147 million orphans in this world.

Many of them are not even able to be adopted.

And of those that are? Well, I can't adopt them all. I can't even come close.

So, while I am not sure what our future holds as far as more children, I do know this.

God is calling our family to big things. Things beyond ourselves and what WE think we need to be doing for the orphans.

And I also know that God wants me to learn some things about Him and WHY we should care for the orphans. Why others should. Of course I KNOW, we all know the Bible commands it.

But do we REALLY know? Deep in our hearts and soul?

That is another post.

Back to what we can do. I know the Lord wants an orphan ministry to happen at our church. A ministry that reaches not only beyond our borders, but right here in the US also. My dreams for this group are so big! I want to see us getting involved in Safe Families, Foster Care, Adoption. Funding adoptions. BUT I also want to see us getting involved with children that are not able to be adopted through support, love, mission trips.

Most important, I want to say a Resounding YES to the things He has called me too, and a Resounding NO to those He has not. Be it messy or hard, I am willing.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Orphan Summit Part 1

You might remember my post about summit a few months back.  Well this was the week.  A friend from church, who is also interested in orphan ministry attended with me.

I was blown away.

Emotionally drained.


Wondering where to begin.


And loving ALL of that. 

I heard amazing testimonies.

Heartbreaking statistics.

Beautiful orphans singing.

I learned that I do not have to change the world.  I just need to do something.

I learned that I can do more to help orphans than just pushing adoption.  (though I am not done doing that to, no worries!)

I learned more about the heart of God than I thought possible.

And now I am home.

I am processing it all.

In a whole new light.

I want to share more details in the coming days, as I think through it all.

And of course I am counting down, TWENTY DAYS TO CHINA!!

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Sawyer & Malaine are Baptized!

 My prayer since I have found out I was expecting each of my children is that they would love Jesus more than anything, and that they would find friends and eventually a spouse that did the same.  To watch those prayers unfold is a true gift.  

Quite a few years ago Sawyer came to us and felt He was ready to have Jesus become His Lord and Savior.  We felt he was sincere, but he was very adamant that he did NOT want to get baptized.  We were totally OK.  We wanted to be sure, and wanted him to be sure that he was ready.  

This past spring Malaine came to us one night and said, "How do you know when Jesus wants you to ask Him into your heart? "  We talked through it and she said, "well I am pretty sure He is asking me to ask Him!" But, again we wanted to be sure so we told her to sleep on it and we would talk more about it the next day.  FIRST thing the next morning she came jumping in my bed and said "Ok, it's morning, I am ready!".  So, we had the joy of walking with our 3rd child into the family of God. 

We invited Ms Jenny over to talk through with the kids and plan their baptism.   We set the date and the kids were so excited to count down to their special day!

 Pastor Jonathan did a great job of calming the kids, and having fun before we got started!
 I love this one!
 Jonathan asked Sawyer why he wanted to be baptized.

 He told him because he wanted to show everyone that He had asked Jesus to be his Lord
 And his Savior. 
 Malaine was a bit nervous, she was worried about holding on to Jonathans arm!
 He is trying to get her to look at me, she is concentrating on that arm he told her to hold!
 Malaine told Jonathan she wanted everyone to know that Jesus was in her heart.

After church we had lunch at home with family to celebrate! 

 We wanted to present Sawyer with something special and after much thought, and google searching, we decided to present him with a sword.  Yep, a REAL sword. We told him it was part of the armor of God and this was the Sword of the Spirit.  He was very excited!

And for our princess?  A crown! We told her how she is now a daughter of the King.  I hope that someday maybe she will use this pillow or crown in her wedding! 
 Beautiful girl!
 So proud of Sawyer and Malaine, so thankful God has saved them! Now 3 of our children are believers and that makes my mama heart feel good. Thank you Jesus!

Friday, May 06, 2011

Donations for China

We are down to one month before we leave! I can't believe we are so close to being back in the land of my daughters. I am ready! Well, almost ready. Ready to love on kids, not so ready to leave behind mine, or packed, or any of that stuff.

Some have asked how they can help. Besides the cost of our trip, we also take over a donation to take the director of the orphanage shopping. So that means extra cash on top of our trip. AND we are bringing over things for the kids to do, along with things that the orphanages need. Here is a list of things we would like to take with us. If you are able to donate any of these things, we would greatly appreciate it!

For the children
  • jump ropes
  • play dough
  • inflatable balls
  • balloons for balloon animals
  • winter hats for kids
  • burp rags
  • childrens triaminic thin strips for kids-all varieties
  • crib mirrors to hang in cribs
  • medicine to treat constipation in children
  • tremadol
  • lotions/soaps for super dry skin
  • mens depends in size small for older boys
  • children's vitamin drops
For the workers

  • hand lotions
  • soaps
  • vitamins
  • ginseng
  • deoderant
  • lipstick/nailpolish
  • makeup (lipstick/nail polish in bold colors)
  • aprons
  • scarfs
  • stationary
  • sample size perfumes
  • sample size coffee packs
Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!