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Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Summer!

Hello friends!   It's SUMMER!  I love catching a break from homework, school, sports, and early bedtimes!  Unlike a lot of moms, I LOVE having my kiddos home with me!   I just wish summer could be longer!

Bronwyn graduated this past May!   So proud of her, she graduated with honors, and 2 years early!  She is spending her summer working at Cracker Barrel, and is going to RCC this fall.  She wants to be a pharmacist.  She is highly motivated and is very studious, I am sure she can do it!  She is meeting her birthmother for the first time in just a few weeks!  EEK~  No worries, it will be good!  <3 p="">
Keagan, Britt and Brianna will all be seniors this fall!   Wow, that will be an expensive year!  LOL  Keagan is detailing this summer, Britt is looking for a job, and Brianna is waitressing at SteakNShake.  But mostly they are just chillin!  And the girls are working on getting their drivers licenses.

Toby, Meng, Miles, and Rory are at Camp Coco this week!  They are all having a great summer, and are glad to have a break from school!  Toby will be a freshman, Miles 8th, and Meng and Rory 6th.  Meng and Miles are doing fairly well health-wise.  Miles had a bad break to his arm this spring, which required surgery, but he handled it SO well!  He is very brave and endures a lot.

Daley has become princess GIGGLES!  She is happy ALL of the time, even when she has reasons to be grumpy!  We have prayed for her healing for so long, but her happiness and joy is just as important to us as her healing!  Thank you Lord, for giving her such holy joy!

Wen and Wu.....well they are as affectionate, sweet, and silly as ever!  They still aren't growing much, but they will be starting Kindergarten in the fall.  Im not sure Im ready for them to be gone every day, all day!  I may have to spend some volunteer hours in their classroom!!!

Ok, and now important news.....Miles was granted a Make-a-Wish, so this past month we (yes, all 13 of us) went to DISNEY!!!   We had such an amazing time.....we did Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Sea World, Lego Land, Universal, and Hollywood.  We were completely exhausted by the end of the week, but it was such an amazing blessing!  Miles had a blast, and somehow....this boy who cannot tolerate long car rides without puking.....managed to ride almost every single roller coaster with no problem!  :)

Other news???   Well. we are praying about moving forward with adopting my Teddy boy.  I can't get him off of my mind.  I love that little guy, and he sits waiting for a family, waiting for some medical care that he can only get here in the US.  Waiting to be loved and wanted.  And here we sit, knowing that even though it would be crazy....we can totally give him what he needs.  So, we are inching forward.  Please pray for us.  And I will keep you posted!   :)

Ok, and here are some photos of my sweet kiddos!  I hope these smiling faces bless you as much as they do me!
God bless!!!







Saturday, March 11, 2017

So Blessed!

     Last Saturday night there was a Natalie Grant/Charlotte Gambill concert in Decatur.   It was a special concert event called "Dare To Be".  A few days before the show, my girls asked me if I would take them.  I will be very honest here.....I did not want to.   I had a very busy week, and I was tired.  Given the choice of staying home and chillin with my family, or spending the evening with 600 women, and I would most certainly choose chillin!   LOL  So, I told them I really did not want to go.
A few days later, my sister asked me to go.  She had some extra tickets.  I told her the same thing, but I did promise I would think about it.  And then my friend Michelle asked me to go. I was thinking, "What is going on with these people!"  LOL   Anyway, I finally reluctantly agreed to go.

     The day of the concert, I really didn't want to go again!   I kinda whined all day about it.  Poor Keagan got to hear the bulk of my whining!  But I went.

     The concert was really good.  Natalie Grant has a wonderful voice, and Charlotte is am amazing speaker, with such a cute British accent!   I was encouraged and uplifted by the praise music, and it was good to be with my girls and my sister.  Even my mom came!  And my mother-in-law and grandmother-in-law!  I was surprised at how many friends were there!  Hmmmm......

    After intermission, another part of the concert began.  They talked about how every show, they choose to honor someone from the community.  They began talking about a woman who had two biological children, and then adopted several children.  They began to talk about special needs children, and the trips to China.  I was pretty shocked that this woman was living in our community, and I did not know her!  I feel like I know most of the adoption mommas in our area, especially the ones who have adopted from China.  And then they began talking about this woman adopting a daughter with Cerebral Palsy and a son with sickle cell......and it hit me.......I think they were talking about ME!  I looked around, and everyone was looking at ME!   Everyone was smiling, some were crying!  I was completely and totally overwhelmed!  I literally had NO IDEA!  NONE!   NOT A HINT!  I still cannot believe that my family and friends pulled this one over on me!   WOW!

    I was called up onto the stage, and these two ladies kept on praising me, and it was SO awkward!  I hate attention being called onto me!  I didn't know whether to cry, or laugh, or try to escape back to my seat!  LOL   They gave me a beautiful bouquet of flowers, and a basket full of their books, DVDs, and other merchandise.  I hoped then I could escape back to my chair!  But there was more.  They mentioned all of our hospital trips, out of town and out of state, and they presented me with a $500 GAS CARD!  And there was MORE!~   Then, they said they wanted to bless me further, and they told me that my mortgage WAS PAID FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE YEAR!!!!!   I am totally serious!  Again, I wanted to cry, laugh, and run back to my chair!  It was this weird mixture of feeling excited, embarrassed, honored, overwhelmed, scared, thankful, and I don't even know what else!   But most of all BLESSED,

     I am not special.  I don't deserve this special blessing.  I am a momma whom God has called to mother a few orphans.  I have tried my best to answer that call.  Some days I love this calling, other days it makes me crazy!  But I don't ever want to stand before our Lord one day, and for Him to not be pleased with me.  When He moves on my heart, I want to take action.  Thats all.

     So, here we are!
We can breathe a little easier around here right now, because of this blessing.  Our finances have been stretched and then stretched some more, mainly just due to the size and financial responsibilities of parenting the 11 children still at home.  This blessing is allowing us to pay off some debt, which will help our monthly budget  immensely.  This blessing is allowing us to get caught up a bit, and to be able to build back up our emergency savings.   We are so blessed by this gift, and I simply do not know how to thank everyone who was involved.

    So, from my heart, THANK YOU!   From my family's hearts, THANK YOU.  And I would ask that instead of just thinking about what a "great person" I am, you please consider what can YOU do for God!  Is He calling you to adopt?   The need is so huge....the orphan crisis is SO big!  God wants His children in families!    Are YOU that family?   PLEASE, pray about it!  And if you need guidance, encouragement, or a little "push", please let me know!  It would be my honor, to let this blessing bless others!<3 p="">


Saturday, February 25, 2017

Another Goodbye.............

Bryson AKA Ronan is leaving tomorrow.  Going back home with his birth mom.   So here I am, once again, saying goodbye to this sweet boy that I love.  First time when he was a month old, and now, at almost 11.

Bryson is hard.  Bryson has severe autism.   He doesn't like noise.  He doesn't like busyness.  He doesn't like little kids who annoy him.  He eats only a few types of food.  He hates school.  He doesn't accept authority from men, including Dale.  My household has been in chaos these past few months, as we all try to adjust to him, and allow him to adjust to us.  There have been some very, very difficult times.  But there have been a lot of really awesome times!

Bryson is fascinated with old cars.  He can tell you the make, model, and year of almost every car he sees.  He can draw logos from memory, and he is really good at it.  He loves to collect rocks and will spend hours admiring their beauty.  Bryson doesn't smile much, but when he does, it is priceless!  Bryson loves animals.  Bryson loves clouds, and can tell you the names of the different ones.  Bryson is unique, and that is refreshing!  He is fiercely loyal to Rory, even when Rory is being a brat to him.

I have asked his birthmother if we can kind of "co-parent".  She can keep him during the week, and I can pick him up and keep him on the weekends.  Hoping we can have him over the summer, and can even take him on vacation with us.  She agreed, and I pray she does allow these things.  No matter how hard he has been for us, we love him, and want to continue a relationship with him.  He is very special to me!

Lord, please help our hearts tonight, as we prepared to let Bryson go again.  It is not any easier this time than it was last time.  Lord, please protect him, grow him, and let him know in his little heart how much we love him.  Let him know he is smart, and special.  Please let us see him again, often, and let our relationship grow and grow.  Thank you for the time we have had with Bryson.  The good and the bad.  Please help us mostly remember the good.
In your sweet name, Amen.


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Daley Faith

I love this girl, Daley.  She is my peace.  She calms my storm.  She loves me when I'm grouchy, she loves me when I'm down.  She never argues with me.  She never wants more from me than to simply love her.  She smiles just when I need it most.  She snuggles into me when I am sad and lonely.  I truly feel close to God when I am close to her.  I simply cannot imagine my life without her.   She was one of the best decisions our family has ever made.

It wasn't always like this.  When she was born, she was SO difficult.  She cried most of the time she was awake.  She rarely slept more than an hour or two at night.  The first few years with her are a blur of exhaustion and frustration.  A very wise doctor told me she suffered from "neurological irritability", and that it would settle down by the time she turned 3.  It took a little longer than that, but she rarely cries now, and she is very content.  This peaceful nature she has now was worth every sleepless night.

My sweet Daley-girl has been really sick.   In December, she got a virus, and it almost took her life.  She was in the PICU for a week.  And this past week she has been very sick again.  Several times all of her vitals have crashed, and caused absolute panic in my heart.  It has forced me to stop and consider how fragile her life is.  And it made me have such mixed feelings.  I cannot stand the thought of losing her.  But I  know that when she see Jesus, she will be able to run to Him, speak to Him, stand straight and hold her head high.....all things she has never been able to do.  I cannot wait for her to taste and enjoy food, to get grass stain on her little jeans.  To actually wear out her clothes!  Because I know Jesus, and I believe His Word, I know that when she meets him, she will leave her broken body behind.  She wont need the VP shunt, the Vagal Nerve Stimulator, the feeding tube, the SP tube.  She wont need her back brace or her leg braces.  Her wheelchair, her bath chair.  These things will not be needed, because she will be made perfect and whole!  I will be so happy for her!  But so broken for me.

Please pray for me.  This is hard.   When she was little, I used to have 2 very different dreams over and over.  The first was an amazing dream.  I would wake up in the morning, to her standing at her crib, calling my name in a beautiful, clear voice.  A MIRACLE!   Can you only imagine the countless people who would come to serve the Lord after seeing such a miracle???   The second dream was when I would wake up to find that she had passed in her sleep.  And here I am, caught in the middle of these two dreams.

I love this girl.  She has changed my heart forever.  She has made me a better person, a better mom, a better servant.

God bless you friends.  Hug your kids!