Friday, March 30, 2012

Swimming in March?

There are a few places in this country where swimming (outdoors) in March is possible.  We live in one of those places.  Of course, it's still kinda crazy since the water temperature was 68 degrees, but my kids could not stare at the large pool of water much longer and begged to go in.
Cute Kate... freezing!
Not a sign of frostbite among them!

Watching at a safe distance!

Had fun, but happy to be out!

This is what Will thinks of swimming in the freezing pool!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

God's Pies

Great video about giving to back to God.
Be sure to mute/pause the music at the bottom of the page.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Dan's New Bike

This is actually his birthday present.  His birthday isn't until May, but I don't think it really matters when you're almost 3!  : )  He's so excited he went outside in the dark tonight to check on it before bedtime! He also keeps saying, "Thank you, Mom!"  You're so welcome, my sweet boy!
This picture makes him look so big and the bike so little, but it IS the right size.
Happy Boy!

Friday, March 23, 2012

For Baby Gus

A fellow adoptive mom has a great fundraiser right now to bring home her new son, Gus.  Please check out My Jie-Jie and Me and buy a necklace or 2! Be sure and put in the code "Sweet Gus"in the comments box so that their family gets credit.  Fundraiser ends March 28th, so hurry!!

Just one of many beautiful necklaces to choose from!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Random Pictures

So, I haven't posted some good pictures for a while.  Here are some from the beach a couple weeks ago when we had nice weather.
Nate getting his recommended daily allowance of sand!
Now he's watching his crazy siblings in the freezing ocean!
Dan's great smile!
Anna showing off her one of the many rocks she collected.
Kate and Anna got their hair cut about a week ago.  Here's Kate showing off her new short hair.
Love those baby blues!
Hope you all are having a wonderful Saturday!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Opportunity to Be His Hands and Feet

I was so excited to have found this blog the other day.  See... we have a connection that only a few know about.  The adoption world is so very small!  Their Marianna came home in 2010 from a wonderful foster home in China that holds a very special place in my heart.  Well, they are going back to adopt again.  Wonderful news!  They have just recently finished an amazing work day through Both Hands Project.  Check it out here and then give as generously as you can.  Donations are tax-deductible and so greatly appreciated.  They are bringing home their son VERY soon!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

My Take on Fundraising

We are in the early stages of fundraising and... well... all I can say is that I'm happy God prepared my heart ahead of time.  Fundraising is humbling.  Fundraising is embarrassing.  Fundraising is emotional.  People who you thought would be supportive are not.  Disappointing.  And I'm not talking about money necessarily.  They are not supportive to even spread the word, come up with fundraising ideas, help with the process.  It's hard to not take it personally.  God was preparing me by reminding me that it's not about me or our family.  Remember... our emotions don't matter... how we feel about it doesn't matter.  A child (or children) will be coming into our home and becoming part of our family.  They are what matters!  I'll be embarrassed a thousand times over if it means our children can be with us!!

I was asked a while back if it's right for a family to start the adoption process knowing they don't have the funds.  In my heart I knew the answer was yes, but had to think about it a few days as to exactly why.  First, if everyone who adopted actually had the money starting out then there would be far fewer children in loving homes right now.  Definitely not ideal!  Second, for those who are not called specifically to adoption, then financially helping a family to adopt is a way to help the orphaned.  If we have all the money already then those individuals are not provided the opportunity to give and be blessed.  Finally, and most importantly, if a family doesn't step out in faith to adopt, they will miss out on seeing firsthand the miracles that God will perform in bringing about the necessary funds.  I have heard story after story of how God (through people who obeyed God's call) blessed families with all the adoption funds needed.  In all the ways we obey and serve God we get to be part of His miracles.  We are his hands and feet.  That's why I tell my children all the time that God's prompting in all our hearts should not be ignored.

So, where am I today.  I'm ok.  I just know it will work out.  We may have the money way in advance or it may come at the 11th hour.  Either way, God's heart is for the orphaned.  God doesn't call the equipped, He equips the called.  He will provide and I rest in that assurance!

And for those who are interested, I have set up a Fundraising Blog.  Feel free to send the link to all who you think would be interested in helping our efforts.  Thank you!!

Monday, March 5, 2012

It's Not About Me!

Why should something that is so obvious be so remarkable to me?  While praying yesterday and asking God to help me endure the adoption process and all it's hiccups, complaining that we haven't been matched yet, and a number of other adoption-related requests, I felt this strong statement come to mind, "Jennifer!  It's not about you!"  My eyes popped open!  No, it's not about me.  It's about this child (or children) that we will adopt and all the others.  What we do is for them.  All orphan ministries, all adoptions, all of it.  This isn't for me.  I'm not supposed to be comfortable in this process.  I'm not supposed to feel joy all the time over it.  In fact, I would go so far as to say that my feelings are inconsequential.  In our current culture of acting constantly on our feelings and the bondage associated with that, this statement is freedom!  My feelings about this don't matter.  I don't have to worry about how I feel about it.  It has to be done.  It will be done.  Oh, sure!  I can enjoy the highlights and I'll still feel sadness in the lows, but they will not rule me.  They will no longer be the focus of my prayers and I will not let it mar this experience.  In fact, in one of my lows, I said to Jim, "I'm not doing this again!"  (Meaning the adoption process.)  Those are words that I will surely eat one day! : )  

I don't know what the rest of this process will look like or what other speed bumps we may encounter, but I do know that God is in control and not my emotions!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

I Used To Be Detail-Oriented...

That was before I started this adoption!  My job for many years relied on me being very detail-oriented.  I couldn't miss ANYTHING!  If I did, it could mean severe consequences for our company.  So, going into the adoption I thought, "Hey!  Right up my alley!" Oh, man!  I think I've lost my edge.  I would miss details in the home study and have to email my kind social worker what I missed AFTER she sent it out to our placement agency saying it was final. This happened a couple times!  But the biggest by far was sending out paperwork to USCIS yesterday missing a few key pieces of paper.  I realized my mistake after the FedEx man picked up the package and was long gone.  But the wonderful people at FedEx held the package for me at the transfer station and will send it back with the kind FedEx man today so I can insert the 3 pieces of paper and he can take it back with him.  I went over that paperwork so many times.  How did I miss it?!?  I'm wondering if it's because I gave up caffeine for Lent. : ) At any rate, I really hope this doesn't continue.  I don't know how many times I can stop the FedEx man!!