Sunday, September 28, 2008

Friday, September 26, 2008

Fired Up About "Fireproof"

Kevin and I just got back from watching the movie "Fireproof" and I must say it exceeded my expectations. I've heard lots of positive reviews about the movie recently and even though they ranted and raved about it, I wasn't sure it would measure up to all the praise it was receiving. Like I said, it exceeded my expectations. Honestly, I have never cried this much in a husband has never cried this much in a movie (he's not a crier)! I laughed so hard that I cried as well. It had the whole package...comedy, romance & adventure. It's a wonderful challenge to marriages that are struggling and it's an encouragement for the marriages that want to go from an 8 to a 10.

Go see it!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Happy Birthday, Princess

Today is the day this little princess turned three. We celebrated princess style last Saturday with family at our house. Everything was outside and I couldn't have asked for a more perfect day...the weather was great! I really could tell a difference in her awareness of what was happening this year. She has been asking for the past three weeks about her party and telling everyone she sees...including cashiers at stores, her Sunday School teacher, the lady we carpool with and so on. It was fun to see her excitement.
Aunt Sarah was the entertainment for the evening. The kids loved playing "break the egg" with her. Grandpa & Grandma surprised us and came by motorcycle. Grandma also dressed for the party theme again this year...she wore her frog shirt for the princess to kiss the prince. Last year they both dressed in red for the Elmo party. Loved it!For Kaiya's cake this year, I took the extremely easy way out...I decorated this muffin tree filled with cute little mini muffins made by my mom. I printed out "happy 3rd birthday, Kaiya", glued it on toothpicks and stuck them in the muffins. I also printed out a picture of the castle used on her invitations, put some pink jewels on and stuck it in the top. I like easy! :) Perfect night for a campfire.

The Friday night before the party, I was blowing up balloons and thinking "This is so nice that we are home tonight and I have plenty of time to get ready for the party". It was another beautiful evening and we were all outside. Kevin was trimming weeds around our trees with his machete. He found a praying mantis and to make a long story short, the bug bit him on the finger. He swung his hand back trying to get the thing off his finger and caught the machete on the way back slicing his finger. I heard the yell and shortly after saw him walking toward me holding his bloody hand. I couldn't look at it and basically ran the other way...I know...pretty pathetic. Kaiya, on the other hand, was very concerned about her daddy's hurt finger and stayed by his side the whole time comforting him. So there goes our nice relaxing trip to the redi-med and a finger getting glued back together and bandaged was what the rest of our night consisted of. Watch out for those praying mantises!

His sliced finger certainly didn't stop him from being the best husband in the world though. We went to bed after everyone left the party on Saturday leaving a mess in the garage and a sink full of dishes. I hate doing that and usually don't, but my tired body won that night. My husband woke up early on Sunday morning and cleaned up the entire garage and kitchen before I was even out of bed. That made my whole day! Thanks honey! You're the best!

Today I painted Kaiya's nails while Caedmon was at school...her very favorite thing to do these days. She told me she loved me three times today. I can't believe how big she is getting right before my eyes. She is developing a sweet and caring personality and loves to help me around the house with dishes, folding laundry and even mopping the floor. She's going to be a wonderful "big sister" to that new baby she's been praying for. Today she prayed a prayer from her heart before lunch for the first time instead of the famous "God is Great". Tonight we are having a special birthday supper for Kaiya at home and giving her the gift we got for her. I'm making taco salad, one of her favorites. We'll put a candle in one of the leftover cupcakes and sing happy birthday one last time for her until next year.

I love you sweet princess!

Happy Birthday!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Baby Chase

These are pictures I took last night of a sweet little six-month old. I love that age. They stay right where you want them to. This little guy was quite the charmer. Don't those blue eyes just melt your heart?
I love this one!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Journey to Our Child

Back in April, with much excitement we announced that we were starting the adoption process once again. We proceeded from there to begin applying with an agency which included having our home study updated, filling out a stack of paperwork, making appointments for medical exams, blood work & fingerprinting. It's a wonderful feeling when that is all completed and you are just waiting. I've been sorting and reorganizing making space for this new little child that will soon join our family.

The kids talk about our new baby everyday through their little prayers or through questions trying to figure out how all of this is going to take place. Caedmon asked out of the blue the other day why my tummy was broken. Kaiya has been proclaiming over the past month that she has seven babies in her tummy. And they both have said that we are getting two babies...a brother and a sister.

Last week we got an unexpected email from the agency we applied at stating that the director will no longer be working their after the end of this month. This explained the lack of communication we had been experiencing over the past month. In talking with her, it sounded questionable whether the agency would even be able to continue at this point. Of course this was a discouragement and a setback for us at first thinking that we had wasted precious time and money with this agency when we could have been with another one.

After thinking it through, we felt at peace realizing that this is just one more step that God is leading us to the child that he has for our family. My sister-in-law compared it to having a miscarriage which I had never thought of, but having experienced that myself I agreed that it did feel that way a bit.

Kevin was able to talk with another representative from the agency and it sounds like they would like to continue with this ministry, but need to find another director which could take who knows how long. So, at this point we are leaving our profile with them but also looking into some other opportunities as well. We have an appointment to meet with an attorney next week who does adoptions locally that we are excited about. I'm not excited about all the paperwork again, but it is a very tiny thing that we can do to move us closer to our child.

We are certainly enjoying these cooler days. Last Tuesday after school, we meet some friends at the zoo for a picnic. It wasn't busy at all since most kids were in school. The temperature was perfect.

Here are the boys - Caedmon, Grant & Cole

Kaiya was a little outnumbered, but she fit right in with the fun.
This was the first we had made it to the zoo this year which made it even more exciting for the kids. They were pretty awestruck.

Thanks, Jenny, for a fun day and for getting us all in for free!

That was how we were able to have an ice cream treat.

And look who I got to have all to myself one day last week!
I will be babysitting for my two nieces every other Wednesday. Emmi is two months and Lexi is ten and both are as sweet as can be. Lexi even folded and put away a mountain of laundry for me while she was here.

As we wait for the child that God has for us, I am reminded of the sermon on Sunday at our church entitled "God's Perfect Timing". I will continue to enjoy these days with our family and wait and trust Him with that timing.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:1

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Lost Little Sheep

Last Saturday, Kevin was working outside on our septic system...not quite how he wanted to spend the day, but it required his full focused attention. We live back against a woods, quite a distance off the road and down a long lane. Because of that, it is not uncommon for our kids to play outside by themselves...although we do check on them frequently.

I was inside showing Caedmon a new website for kids that I thought he might like to check out. It's called fun and safe site with activities & games for kids by Lutheran Hour Ministries.

Kaiya had just retrieved a glass bottle from inside and proclaimed that she was on a rock collecting mission. I didn't think anything of letting her go outside knowing that Kevin was outside as well.

As I was playing the Hyper velocity Racing Game on JCplayzone with Caedmon, Kevin came to the front door and asked if I knew where Kaiya was. He said he could hear her crying and it sounded like she was far away. I jumped up instantly and ran outside yelling her name. My first thought was that she wandered into the woods and got lost. We checked the vehicles in the garage, ran around the house and I began to panic. She turns three in a couple weeks, but the fact that she's still only two years old resonated in my mind. "God help us find her!"

Kevin kept calling her name, then spotted her at the end of our long lane walking back with our dog Barkley and crying her little heart out. I sprinted all the way down the lane and swept her up into my arms. She said "I got lost, mommy". I asked her if she went on the road and she said yes. Later when I asked her the same question, she said no. I'm thinking she stayed on our lane, but was right at the edge where the road is. I was glad that Barkley was with her, but at the end of the lane is a large deep ditch. She said she was beside the big hole.

Of course all the "what ifs" ran through my mind at that time. I was so grateful that she was safe and in my arms again. It reminded me of another time we lost one of our children. We were at the airport in Costa Rica saying goodbye to my brother-in-law and sister-in-law who were there as missionaries. Someone was holding Caedmon (only 15 months old at the time...he basically just learned to walk) and put him down to give goodbye hugs. Well, he wandered off a little and when I realized he wasn't with us I panicked...anxiously looking all around. We were right by the road and with the busyness of the airport, all I could think about was that he could have easily wandered out to the road. My stomach feels sick as I'm typing this right now.
One of our family members spotted him standing up against a building only a few feet away from us. I cried for the next hour straight.

My stories have ended with happy endings, but I know that others I have heard have not and my heart aches for you.

We are human and do the best that we can, but cannot possibly protect our children at all times. That's where our prayers and faith come in. The prayers of protection that I pray many days for my children and the faith I have that God is in control are what I cling to to fill in the gaps. These children are not my own, they are God's. It's a hard grip to let go of, but I must.

What would I do without my Kaiya!

She's been singing the song "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" for the past couple of months. I finally got it on video.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Laboring and Other Happenings

Can you believe that Labor Day has come and gone already. Yikes! Summer is officially over. Boo-hoo! I love Fall, but not what follows. My daughter keeps asking if it's going to snow today...let's not talk about that yet, OK?

Our Labor Day weekend was more about laboring than relaxing this year, but I'm not complaining. It was nice to get some things crossed off the list that seems to keep getting bigger and bigger. There is always something to paint, organize, clean and so on and I was excited that we had the extra day that weekend to tackle some projects around the house.

Three doors got a fresh coat of paint.

The lockers got a fresh coat of to black.

The shoe bench that Kevin made a few months ago (with the awesome assistance of his brother Lyndon) was finally completed with some touch-up paint.

This nifty little hanging rack was installed to get some stuff up off the floor.

The mini clothesline was finally hung in my laundry room (we bought it at the beginning of summer :)).
And lots of misc. cleaning and organizing occurred in the garage. I was a happy person. :)
We did have a little fun too. On Friday evening, Kevin took Caedmon and Immanuel on an airplane ride. I wasn't sure what Caedmon's reaction would be and asked him how he liked it. With excitement he said "I got a little scared when the plane tipped". They were able to fly over our house and Caedmon said he could see our dog, Barkley. Yeah, right.:) Kaiya and I did some shopping while they were in the air and then met them at Burger King afterward for supper.

Saturday morning breakfast made by daddy & company
And here are a few pictures of more fun at our house after all the hard work.
I can't believe we are getting ready to start our fourth week of school already. I have to say that I'm feeling much better about sending Caedmon. I absolutely LOVE his teacher and LOVE his school. He is learning bible verses every week, going to chapel, has gym class, computer class, art class & music class.

It seems like Caedmon has grown up overnight. I no longer walk him into school each morning, but simply drop him off at the door at his request. "I can walk in by myself today, Mom" he bravely proclaims. "Are you sure you know where you're supposed to go?" I reply. "Yeah, Mom...right beside the piano".

His school has high expectations when it comes to behavior and following the class rules...I like that alot. His teacher has a warning system that she uses...different consequences occur after so many warnings. Each day you go without getting a warning, you get a stamp on your hand. It took him a few days along with a few threats, I mean pep talks at home to realize and understand what was expected of him. He had a few warnings the first couple weeks and one day without a stamp. I was beginning to think that this was going to be a long year. Last week, he went the whole week without any warnings and proudly showed off his stamped hand each day.

Here are his very first official school papers he brought home.
When he comes home from school each day, he plays and plays and plays. It seems like he enjoys his toys better after not seeing or playing with them all morning.