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

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Psalm 19:1-2~

The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. Psalm 19:1-2







Monday, April 28, 2008

Ephesians 1:15-16~

For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. Ephesians 1:15-16


Thank You "Uncle Cop Mike" for coming to visit us...

Thank you for your love...
Thank you for your service...
Thank you for the laughter...
And for showing our boys that real men love Jesus...
Thank you for blessing us by sharing your time with us. Thank you for the dounuts too!..We love you and miss you already! You are in our prayers!

Hee, hee and we have a feeling your time at work taking down the bad guys may seem a little more quiet and peaceful after your time here.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Our week..



We have 20 days left of school...Yippee! Even though we do school lightly through the summer it always is *so* exciting to finish up books.

3 children have (or will) celebrate Birthdays this week... Here is Birthday Boy #1...

He wanted Veggie Dogs, and Veggie corn dogs for his Birthday Lunch..



Here is the ice cream cake he wanted. We are such diligent homeschoolers ;o) that we even put math problems on our birthday cakes.. They solve the problem and only then can they blow out their candles. I kid... we forgot the number 6 for his cake. Hopefully, he won't be sharing this with his therapist one day ;o).


4 children went to the Dr. this week...



(Look who is now officially ON the growth chart for the first time! Go Wee Boy! Up until now he was too far below to chart to plot.)

4 children went to the Optometrist..
(Eben and his New reading glasses)

7 out of our 11 now children wear prescription lenses.. I think our Optometrist just told his wife to go and pick out that new car she has been wanting ;o)..

7 children received haircuts..

7 are now enrolled in Tae Kwon Do ...



(Yes, we have enrolled them in a class where they are learning to yell, and fight..We have ..No. Common. Sense. Actually, it is a very nice program run at a church, and taught with Christian Principles.)

We have 5 Superheroes who have taken up residence..



From left to right we have.. Green Lantern, Superman, Aqua Man, Superman 2, and Batman..
I know you could tell that just by looking, but just in case your didn't remember Aqua Man wearing a black scarf I thought I'd clarify ;o)

We took a few trips to the park...




Where Sweet Pea tried to escape 1,890 times. Because when you are 16 months old, slides, swings, playhouses and jungle gyms don't hold a candle to a sidewalk leading to the parking lot ;o)


There were also thousands of hugs, kisses, laughs, and cuddles. Every night I look at our children sleeping and can't believe how BLESSED I am that God has entrusted them to me for this short time.

My cup runneth over..

Friday, April 25, 2008

Proverbs 22:9~

He that hath a bountiful eye shall be blessed; for he giveth of his bread to the poor. Proverbs 22:9

Thank you for all who donated and prayed for the situation at the Kasoa orphanage in Ghana.

The latest figure I heard is that $1,895.00 was pledged towards the well! Praise the Lord! This is going to be an on going project for AAI as the crisis is not over.

As you can see from the pictures of Kasoa below the need is very great. It is AAI's hope that funds will continue to come in to provide these children with food and clean water.

The classroom at Kasoa..



The kitchen at Kasoa...


A bedroom at Kasoa...Here are the donations Muna and Percy brought to Kasoa today. The funds for these donations came from Eban House . I am so thankful for the next several weeks that these children will have fresh water and food.

It is so humbling to see the conditions these children are living in. We have been blessed with so much. It is our blessing and responsibility for us to be able to share with those in need.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Matthew 10:42~

"And whoever in the name of a disciple gives to one of these little ones even a cup of cold water to drink, truly I say to you, he shall not lose his reward." Matthew 10:42





I am heading out to take the children to their Tae Kwon Do Lessons and I tell them to get their water bottles. As they scramble to get their shoes, socks, water I check my e-mail and see this e-mail from Merrily Ripley of AAI...

"I am feeling sad but thankful. Today we got the following message from our
coordinator in Ghana regarding an orphanage that has sent us some children
for placement.

THE CONDITION AT KASOA IS PATHETIC , THEY DON'T HAVE FOOD THERE AND THEY ARE
FORCED TO PREPARED BANKU AND THEY STARTED RUNNING TILL TODAY. ["running"
is diarrhea, banku is a corn porridge mixed with cassava, is very cheap but
has almost no nutritional value)

The children that this orphanage has sent to us have had terrible parasites
due to the contaminated water supply. I told Anita to send our staff
grocery shopping for fruit, eggs, and chicken and to buy drinkable water for
them. Fortunately we had an extra $500 on hand there so there will be no
delay. It is so hard to think of kids suffering because there is not good
food or water available. We had plans to raise money so a borehole for
water could be drilled for them. It looks like this project moves into the
urgent category. I am thankful we have folks who care.

Merrily"

I can't imagine not have clean drinkable water for my children. We don't even think about it. We use it freely and without thought.

These poor children at Kasoa not only don't have families, they don't even have clean water or food. AAI is raising money to build a borehole well which will give these children water which can replenish their bodies and not sicken them. If you feel led to give to this project contact AAI HERE and mark it for the Kasoa Project.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Psalm 100:4~

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. Psalm 100:4


America has 2 more citizens!! On Tuesday we headed to court to finalize our adoptions of Eben and Joel! This officially makes them US Citizens ! What a blessed day!

Joel was a little nervous about this whole procedure, but it was so good for he and Eben to hear Jim and I swearing to the judge that he and Eben will forever be our sons. The judge pronounced that they are now considered our biological children, . They now legally have our last name, and first names we have chosen for them. We still call them Eben and Joel (which we used as their middle names), but we gave them new first names (as we did all of our children). When they are older they can choose which name to go by.

Our atty. took the picture, and unfortunately the camera was on the wrong setting. A friend is trying to help us fix it up a little.
Here are the children who went to the court house with us. We met in judges chambers along with 2 other adoptive families, so we only brought part of the tribe while others enjoyed a day at our friends. It was a good thing as our "partial family" filled up the room!
Afterwards, we took them to McDonald's to celebrate. I know, I know a nutritional nightmare, but an All American treat.

There we introduced them to "The Big Mac". Joel was in love. He wanted to head back to court to change his name to "Big Mac." He ate 2..and was still hungry for more.
Eben shares his Mama's love for "The French Fry".

It was truly a blessed day! We thank God for blessing us with these children!!! They truly are a gift from him.



Monday, April 14, 2008

Spring Break~

We had one of our most blessed Spring Breaks *ever* this past week.

We were able to spend time with my cousin Noel, and with my Mom, my Brother, and my dear Sister~In~Law..


It was a blessing from God. We miss everyone *SO* much, and are counting the days until we can be together again.

A favorite few of the many memories made..

There was great fun shooting rockets off in the park..



A special "Thank you!" to Noel for our garden..

And for our scarecrow whom we adore..
There were treasured talks with Auntie Tak....
And of course, basketball with Uncle Brian...Not to mention the football, baseball, kickball that were played..




Long walks...With Mimi close behind...

We love YOU and miss YOU! You are in our hearts and prayers!

Friday, April 04, 2008

Isaiah 30:21~

And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Isaiah 30:21~

When my older brother was around 5 years old my parents enrolled him in swimming lessons. My brother was not enjoying the swimming lessons too much, and each day he would play the "What If?" game on the way to the pool. I can remember him asking my Mom as we drove "What if?" over and over again. "What if you forget me?" What if I sink? "What if ???" add any number of calamities which could enter the mind of a yo little boy.

In my brother's defense the couple who taught the lessons were not the most gentle of teachers. They fully believed in the "sink or swim" method of teaching.

My parents wisely kept bringing him and my brother did learn to swim. He learned so well he eventually ended up receiving a swimming scholarship to the University of Florida, and was a record holder.

One year ago today *I* was playing the "What if" game...with God.

It was one year ago today that Merrily told us about the Ghana Program, and it was one year ago today that we received this picture in our e-mail.


One of a set of brothers who were in need of a family.

I remember I took the children swimming that afternoon after receiving the e-mail. I remember watching the children laughing and playing, and as I watched I wondered..

What IF?

You see I felt the Lord saying in that still small voice that these were our sons. I felt Him calling us to Ghana, and to this adoption, but I was scared. I mentally reviewed every adoption horror story I had ever heard...and I asked "What if?"

"What if we adopt these children and ruin our family forever?"
"What if they hate us?"
"What if they try and run away?"
"What if??"

Today I am asking a different sort of "What if?"

"What if I had never met these precious children?"
"What if I had never heard Eben's amazing laugh?"
"What if I had never seen Joel's happy dance?"
"What if I had never experienced these two sweet boys spontaneously wrapping their arms around me and telling me that they love me?"
"What if I had never heard them sing as they helped me in the kitchen?"
"What if I didn't have these two as my sons?"

Honestly, I can't even imagine. They have blessed our family so much. It is a gift to have them as our sons. I am so grateful God led us on this journey, and brought us our sons.

God oftentimes will ask us to step out in faith. He asks us to "Get out of the boat and walk on the water with Him." If we look at our circumstances and the situation through our human eyes we will fear, and we will sink, but if we keep our eyes on Him..He will see us through, and bless us beyond our imaginations.






Thursday, April 03, 2008

Our children have been sick so long that our family decided we needed a nurse..Just Kidding! Our dear sweet cousin who just graduated nursing school is here visiting and we are so very happy to have her here. We are so very proud of her!
Today we had a blessed day at the beach ..

Eben and Joel had a great time on their first trip to the ocean since being here in America.






We all had a wonderful time.
Aren't the seagulls amazing?
They sure loved us...
And our picnic lunch..


Thank you Lord for family, your creation, and your precious love.