Monday, March 30, 2009

The Blessing Trip

We are home again. Made it home last evening around 4...glad to be here, but really missing the 80 degree Florida air! It rained pretty much the whole way home on Saturday and tiring to travel in rain...and so sad...OK maddening to see snow flurries upon our arrival in Indiana.

But, I really can't complain one little ounce because we had an absolutely amazing and fun vacation that was filled with little blessings throughout the whole trip.

Our trip south was sunny and beautiful the whole way. I still couldn't believe we were actually going...kept thinking in my mind that something would happen to change up the plans again...but it didn't and as you can see we were just a little excited.
We started out on Friday evening around 5 and made it to Nashville by 11 which was the goal. Up again and on the road by six the next morning...Saturday was a long travel day, but beautiful. So what do you do in a van for 18 hours??? I packed each child a backpack FULL of coloring books, stickers, toys, games, paper and misc. items I have been collecting over the past couple months...I even confiscated things they had gotten in their stockings for Christmas and put them away for the past three months...they mysteriously reappeared on our trip. Throw in a few DVDs and a few snacks and there you go...two busy little happy bees. Kevin and I both commented how easy the trip was this time with the kids at these ages. I loved seeing all the flowering trees along the way further south...a glimpse of what is to come. Spring is my favorite time of year!
Partying at the Florida border.
free Florida orange juice at the border
We arrived in Sarasota on Saturday evening, got a few groceries and made it to the house by 8pm. Blessing #1 - We stayed at Kevin's aunt and uncles house (they weren't there) for four nights in Sarasota and the house was available the exact days we wanted to use it. Kevin's grandparents were staying there at the same time in their part of the house and we really enjoyed having the one on one time with them.

On Sunday we attended Beach side Baptist. :) Our first day at the beach...what a favorite place to be! I had so much fun snapping these shots of my little pink beach girl. She has such a love for the water...couldn't keep her out of it. Thankfully her fear of the "beach spiders" went away this year. :)

Caedmon chasing daddy with a bucket of waterDay two was cloudy...we went to turtle beach and collected a bag full of shells. Blessing #2 My Aunt Joyce stopped by and visited with us that afternoon. So good to see her again. Blessing #3 That evening we met some of our Florida relatives at a park for some amazing desserts. So fun to catch up with them and let the kids play together. Here's all the kiddos
And a shot of the girly cousins - me, Danielle, Jess, Jenn, Wynette & Joanna

and just for fun

Thanks again to our Florida family for making the arrangements for us all to get together! So good to see you!

Well it's obvious that I have TONS of pictures that I want to share and I'm only on day I'm going to break this down a bit and post more later. Part two and more blessings coming soon.

Friday, March 20, 2009

a new profession

I acquired a new profession over the past couple months. I'm a professional packer. I've packed and unpacked so many times that I could probably do it in my sleep now.

And I am very excited to be packing again this week for our family vacation to Florida. No baby yet...just a get away with lots of quality family time. We literally made the decision to go just over a week ago...not what we would typically do, but really our lives over the past couple months have been anything but typical.

So we are looking forward to just being together this week...not much planned except for a lot of laughter, adventures, hugs, kisses and smiles....all four of us....just being together as a family and enjoying God's beautiful creation. I can't we come.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

I LOVE the color


The first thing you see when you walk into my house is GREEN. I just realized today that every room in my house has some shade of the color green in it. Most of my wardrobe is green...I'm so drawn to that color. Lucky eyes are even green. I guess loving the color green is reason enough for me to celebrate St. Patrick's Day today. We had a fun day today...sunny skies and 72 degree weather was another reason to celebrate this day the Lord has made. After picking Caedmon up at school, we packed a picnic lunch and headed to the park. My mom met us there. Kaiya went home from the park with Grandma and tonight we got an email from her with this picture attached.

Hi Mom
relaxing at grandma's
love Kaiya

It was fun to focus on Caedmon this afternoon. We played outside on the trampoline and played golf all over the yard. Tonight he was excited about our green supper.

Green eggs & ham

Lime green Jello

Green grapes

Green ice cubes in our drinks

I interviewed Caedmon recently with the following questions I got off facebook. His answers are in green.

1. What is something mom always says to you?
go to the bathroom

2. What makes mom happy?
when I give flowers to her

3. What makes mom sad?
when I sin

4. How does your mom make you laugh?
when she reads silly books

5. What was your mom like as a child?

6.How old is your mom?

7. How tall is your mom?
ten inches

8. What is her favorite thing to do?
going to a restaurant

9. What does your mom do when you're not around?
clean the house

10. If your mom becomes famous, what will it be for?
being nice to people

11. What is your mom really good at?
printing stuff out on the computer

12. What is your mom not very good at?
cutting a tree down

13. What does your mom do for her job?
takes care of us

14. What is your mom's favorite food?

15. What makes you proud of your mom?
when she gives me toys

16. If your mom were a cartoon character, who would she be?
Tom on tom & jerry

17. What do you and your mom do together?
play a game

18. How are you and your mom the same?
we both have bones

19. How are you and your mom different?
we don't have the same brain

20. How do you know your mom loves you?
she reads books to me

21. Where is your mom's favorite place to go?
a hotel for 2 days in Indiana (more like his favorite place to go :))

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Unfortunately I'll be forkin' over the green after the speeding ticket I got very first one...maddening! A lesson was learned.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

close to the brokenhearted

Psalm 34:18
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and every day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Look on me and answer, O Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death;
my enemy will say, " I have overcome
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.


I trust in your unfailing love,
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing to the Lord,
for he has been good to me.

-Psalm 13

Four weeks ago we were matched with another birth mother. Kimberly was due on April 20th. Once again excitement built in our household. We told our immediate family first. For some reason, I kept putting off making the announcement on my blog. I first wanted to call and tell friends & family personally...but admittedly there was a sense of holding back because of the failed adoption we experienced in January.

On Thursday we got a call from our attorney that the birth had taken place. It took us totally by surprise as we weren't expecting it to happen until the end of March at the earliest. I couldn't believe it!! Extreme excitement overflowed as we called our family and shared the news...but a sense of panic came with the excitement as well...I didn't feel like we were ready. How was this all going to work out? Our family immediately jumped forward to help in anyway they could...offering to help with the kids, pets, packing, laundry...whatever it took so that we could leave quickly for Florida without any burdens. We felt so blessed by their help and support. It was all coming together so beautifully.

I began packing on Thursday evening and had most of it ready by Friday morning. Our plan was to leave the kids with my sister and fly to Florida on Sunday. She and my mom would drive the kids down the following weekend to be with us. My mom came over on Friday morning and helped finish up all the laundry and ironing.

Our attorney was communicating well with the birth mother, had visited her in the hospital and set up a time for her to sign the papers on Saturday morning at 9:30. He also took some pictures and emailed them to us. We felt so good about everything this time.


the phone call we received on Friday afternoon...absolutely crushing our hearts and spirits once again... Kimberly had changed her mind.

You see, we had this big surprise building up that made this news even harder...there were two babies born that day...twin boys.

Today I ask myself, "what is the Lord teaching me through all of this?".

This is what He has spoken to me through others and in my quiet times with Him.

-It is OK to cry out to God in sorrow and questioning as did the author of Psalm 13. "How long will I have this sorrow in my heart?" God is not surprised by our questioning him or even our anger. There is nothing we can do to stop his love for us.

-It is OK to take time away...even Jesus went away by himself to cry out to His Father and mourn. On Saturday, I did nothing except unpack everything. It rained all day. I didn't want to get out of bed...I didn't feel like talking to anyone. There were no words. I cried.

- The pain doesn't get easier even though it's happened before...but there is an increased strength each time(if that makes sense)...there is a joy amidst the sorrow.
Kevin reminded me that we have lost five babies in our quest to become parents:
1. a miscarriage in February 2002
2. August 2005 - the baby boy we were to adopt died shortly after birth
3. January 2009 - a failed adoption with a baby girl
4. & 5. - March 2009 - another failed adoption with twin boys

-My love for my kids has grown and deepened...I didn't think that was possible because I thought I loved them as much as was humanly possible before. It's hard to describe, but I have looked at them differently these past few days...with deep gratitude and a deeper love. We had some happy times over the weekend...playing games and laughing together...just being together as a family was a comfort.
-I will absolutely step out in faith again...I will not give up even though there is a lot of fear now. If I didn't step out...even though I'm scared to death, I would miss out on His greatest blessings for me that are yet to come.

-God's unfailing love for us has not's constant. We know because we can feel it. We feel it through the loving encouragement we receive from family and friends. We feel it through the smiles on our kids faces and their laughter. We feel it through our quiet times with the Lord. We will continue to trust that He has a hope and a future for our family (Jeremiah 29:11)and that He uses everything that we go through for our good (Romans 8:28) and ultimately for His glory.

Thank you all for your continued prayers and encouraging words on our behalf.

II Corinthians 1:3-11
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort. We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set out hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many.

Caedmon has been drawing family pictures a lot lately. This is his latest one.