"We are all handmade people created by a God who is not safe or small." Rend Collective Experiment

Friday, March 30, 2007

THIS YOU TUBE from Julie
is SO cool! Her dh put the video cam on the dashboard as they took a trip through Addis Ababa. It shows the experience that driving in Ethiopia is. Keep in mind that there are no seat belts or car seats. Turn your speakers on for an authentic Ethiopian cab ride. Our dd said the only thing it is missing is the sound of the incessant beeping. We just love this!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Proverbs 25:11~

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. Proverbs 25:11

Whenever we go anywhere we are the object of questions and stares. I understand this. We are an unusual family both in size and in diversity. To tell you the truth, if I saw us out and about I would be incredibly curious. So, I really try and be understanding of people and their questions. I am also very concious that as a Christian I represent my Lord. It has been a struggle to come up with responses that are kind and yet protect our boys.

We have had an overwhelmingly positive response to our boys. We do get a lot of questions. Many times people will ask if I am a daycare provider or a foster mom. However, if anyone is around us for more than a few minutes they will quickly realize, by the constant chirp of Mama, that we are a family.

When we go out and about I am pretty focused on the children. Making sure everyone is happy, behaving, and not losing anyone takes quite a bit of my energy. Throw in trying to shop and I am in a "Zone". I realize people are staring and sometimes they will talk about you literally right behind your back and also loud enough for you to hear. I have become very good at not letting on that I notice or even hear.

Now I love adoption, and if someone is interested in adoption I will share any info I have. Many times though it is simple curiosity or nosiness. I think the era of Phil Donahue, Oprah. Jerry Springer, and now reality TV have left people with the impression that they have a right to know all about you and your private family life.

I don't expect people to know all the politically correct adoption lingo either. Many times people simply don't realize how their questions come across. Where the conflict comes in is they don't realize how their questions can hurt adopted children.

Our children's pasts and their stories are their business. They are young now, but as they grow older they surely don't need everyone from the gorcery clerk to the lady at McDonald's knowing how they became an orphan.

The most common questions we get are..

1. Which Ones are Yours? They are all ours.

I understand that what people really want to know is which ones are adopted children and which ones are biological children? Since the arrival of Sweet Pea we get this a lot. People are constantly asking where she came from ;o). They assume she is adopted too.

2. Are they REAL brothers? Again what they want to know is if they are biologically related. Of course they are real brothers. They play together, laugh together, eat together, sleep together. They wrestle and sometimes fuss with each other. They are brothers in every sense of the word. They simply lack the same blood. They would be apalled if someone thought they weren't brothers. Our oldest Ethiopian son is very proud of his relationships within our family. You can hear it in his tone when he says MY Daddy or MY Mama, MY brother. He proudly talks about HIS baby sister to strangers. He deeply values these relationships he lost early in life.

I would love to hear how other adoptive Moms respond to these questions. I would love to hear if you have older adopted children how they feel about these questions.

Thanks and Blessings!

Happy Birthday Baby Girl!~

Well "officially" you aren't the Baby Girl anymore, but you will always be my baby girl. You are pure joy. You have the best laugh ever! You are so fun to shop with. Your "Well, how cute is this??" or "That. Is. SO. TAACCCKKYY!" comments crack me up everytime. You don't walk into a room you bounce or hop or skip. You are a wonderful big sister , and have the heart of a servant. You bless our family in so many ways.Your Daddy and I are so thankful God has blessed us with you.

Have a BLESSED 7 th Birthday!!!!!

Friday, March 23, 2007

Facing the Giants

Have y'all seen this movie yet??

It is awesome!!! A must see! You WILL be blessed!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Love Thursday~

Love Thursday

3 Months Old~

It's hard to believe but Sweet Pea is already 3 months old. She is such a blessing. She is an extremely happy baby. She is so loved by her older siblings. She hardly ever cries and if she "mews" she has a flock of groupies who arrive instantly to help.

She is at that wonderful stage of sleeping through the night, smiling, laughing, sleeping through the night, cooing, sleeping through the night, discovering her hands and feet, sleeping through the night...

I thought I would try and let you guess in whom she delights the most. She loves us all, but there is one who captivates her..

She thinks he's pretty cool, but it's not him..

She's pretty fond of her too..
Loves this lovely girl, but it's not her...
Thinks she's pretty cute, but not her..
Loves this guy too, but it's not him..
Finds this guy irrestistible, but he's not the holder of her heart
Very loving towards this funny guy, but it's not him..
This guy is a close second, but the one she adores is.....

Plastic Green Whale!!! We aren't sure what he's got, but she's got a bad case of "Green Whale Love".

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

James 1:27~

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

Please go watch "Man, you have white Mom, you crazy!"

over on Spirit of Adoption. What an awesome story about how God works when His children answer His call.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Bad Mama Moment

Blaine is asking others to share their Bad Mama Moments to help ease her cousin's mind..

I have had a moment or two.. ;o)

The most memorable one happened three years ago. It was the end of our dear friends' son's birthday party. I had spent 4 hours trying to keep our 18 month old distracted from the rented moonwalk the other children at the party were enjoying. Not an easy task. ..

All of our children are certified daredevils. ALL of them. Not a timid bone in any of their bodies. Boys, girls, adopted, bio..they all live on the EDGE.. Buy stock in L'oreal. Lots of it. Perhaps Sweet Pea will break the tradition and be a careful child. For the sake of my remaining brown hair, I can only hope.

O.K. back to the story.. At the end of the party when there were no other children on the moonwalk I decided it would be o.k. for him to have a bounce. As I was putting him in the moonwalk our eldest ds (who was 7 at the time) walked by and said, "Mama, I don't think that's a good idea. He could get hurt." "Oh, he'll be fine." I said.

Don't you know, he went in there, fell the wrong way, and broke his foot??!!!??

I took him to the Pediatrician and told him the whole sordid story. I told him it was all my fault. Confession is good for the soul. He spared me a lecture saying my seven year old was sure to remind me of this incident for years to come..a Dr. and a Prophet..

And THAT is reason 1,348 why I will never be "Homeschool Mother of the Year".

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

We had our court for our readoption (Necessary step for our Ethiopian children to apply for US Citizenship) yesterday and it's official.. our three little boys are OURS! YIPPEE!! Actually they are His. We are just thankful Jesus has entrusted them to us. They bless us more than words can say.

In other news our little Sweet Pea has been sick, sick, sick. She has a respiratory infection and has been on round the clock breathing treatments for the last several days. She had a rough weekend and I was so thankful we were able to get her into the Dr.'s on Monday. Our eldest dd battles asthma, so we are used to the respiratory problems, but it is still so scary.

We have a really wonderful Pediatrician. He spent a long time listening to her lungs and checking her over on Monday. As I watched him my eyes just filled with tears thinking of all the Mamas around the world who don't have medical care so readily available. What do they do when their babies can't breathe? Who do they call when there is no 911 and their children are hurt, bleeding, dying? We are so blessed.

I went to Ethiopia for the sole purpose to bring home our Wee Babe. I never expected to fall in love with the country and the people. I never expected for God to open my eyes and change my perspective on so many things. The things I saw there have forever changed my heart. I just pray that God can use me to somehow make a difference

The picture of the tights is for your Auntie Robin :o)

Saturday, March 03, 2007

John 6:11~

John 6:11 Jesus then took the loaves, gave thanks, and distributed to those who were seated as much as they wanted. He did the same with the fish.

Tonight I was reading our litttle 4 yo a book called What Did Jesus Say and Do.

I was reading a page telling of the time Jesus fed the 5000 fish and bread. He looked at me and nodded knowingly, "Goldfish." Confused, I said, "Goldfish?" I was thinking "Oh dear, I hope he doesn't think Jesus was feeding people pet goldfish (Did people have pet goldfish in Bible times?)." We are not a seafood eating family, so I was thinking how I was going to explain this fish eating phenommenon when he happily announced, "Mr. Kyle and Miss Eesa (Miss Melissa) feed me goldfish.. Mr. Kyle and Miss "Eesa" are his Sunday School teachers. "Aahh yes, Goldfish, of course !! The "official" snack of Baptist Sunday Schools everywhere..What else would Jesus serve?

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Our Day~

Here is a music slideshow our children created which shows "Our Day".
I told them we were going to document what we do in a day and they went way beyond what I had imagined. They are such great kiddies! We are rearranging /redoing our home so pretty PLEASE ignore any messes and the lack of grout and finishing touches.

Check Out Owlhaven's Blog to see more families share a "Day in My Life".

Here is a rundown of our Wed (the day they photoed).

Wednesday's are a busy day for hubby Jim. He leaves before 7 a.m. and works all day stopping in briefly to eat (no time to even sit down) before he heads to preach at the prison downtown. He usually arrives home after 9 p.m.

We are not so much a scheduled family as a "routine" family. Our days have a definite pattern, but with 5 little ones under 5 I have hard time designating hard and fast time slots for subjects and activities.

Our 12 yo son sets his alarm for 6:15 and starts school shortly afterwards. He does BJU Home Sat, so he works independently. Our 11 yo dd also does Home Sat and works independently.

The rest of us awaken between 7 and 7:30.
I shower and by then the younger boys are usually waiting for me in our bedroom.
We dress, make beds, start laundry, feed babies, eat, brush teeth and hair.
We do our family chores.
Either my 11 yo dd or I will start the bread.. we grind our own grain which sounds really difficult, but actually consists of flipping a switch and pouring wheat berries :o).
The Babies get their morning baths.
I do a Preschool Time with our Little Boys.
Little Boys' do playtime while I school the 8 yo and 6 yo girls in math and language arts.
Lunch, feed babies, clean up.
Naptime for Littles under 4.
Schooltime with me for older 4 yo
I do the girls' Sonlight Curriculum w/ them.
Feed Baby.
Check and correct the Older Children's Schoolwork.
Naptime's Over..
Outside Play/Free Time
Clean Up.
Littles' Story Time and off to Bed.
Feed Baby.
Hang-Out Time.
Feed Baby, feed Baby, feed Baby..

Off to BED!

Numbers 6:5~

During the entire period of his vow of separation no razor may be used on his head. Numbers 6:5

An integral part of the Nazarite Vow. Samson took it. John the Baptist took it... I am thinking the Wee Babe should take it.

This is the story of our Wee Babe and how he lost his curls..

It started out innocently enough (Doesn't it ALWAYS?) The boys needed a haircut. Mr. Anonymous (dh) has been so busy with work and house renovations he hasn't had time to cut 5 heads of hair. I took it upon myself to do it. I have done it many times before. Mr. Anonymous is just much better at it. I psyched myself up and started with the littlest one. Our Wee Babe. Like a lamb to the slaughter he came. I turned on the clippers and started clipping. I confess I was feeling a little puffed up (Pride goeth before a fall) thinking we were saving at least 50 dollars thanks to me. Then the clipper lost their thingy (what is that thingy called?) and the razor cut his hair to the skin. He had a big bald spot square in the middle of his head. There was no hiding it and no cutting around it. I gasped in horror and the other dc gathered around. They were all distraught over what I did to their baby. I had to shave his whole head. All of those beautiful curls GONE! Our 8 yo tried to make me feel better.. "Well, I guess he doesn't look that BAD." she said hesitantly.. Our more honest 4 yo said, "I don't like it. I like it better the other way."

He is still the cutest thing of course, but I have Mama guilt..........Mr. Anonymous has been handed back the clippers.