Faith is deliberate confidence in the character of God whose ways you may not understand at the time ~Oswald Chambers

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday Snapshot {Lauren}

If Lauren ruled the world...

there would be mandatory sleeping in everyday and no hairbrushing allowed until at least after lunch.

There would be dessert after every meal.

And a slumber party to attend each night.

Her most important meetings wouldn't be with heads of state or rulers of other countries...

...instead, it would be time spent simply hanging out with her family and her friends.
  No agenda.  Just a lot of giggling and loving.

And food.  Lots and lots of food.

And though we are different in many ways this child of mine and me...

I have to admit there are many days I think to myself...

if Lauren did rule the world...

well then, what a wonderful world that would be.

Ni Hao Y'all

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Good to go.

Got our visas back from the Embassy today.

So whenever Ch*ina gives us the green light, we are officially good to go.

And it's a good thing too...

'Cause it appears this guy is ready for the next size up in Chinese silks.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

One small step closer...

Today we got our I800 approval in the mail which (I think) means the US*CIS said it would be just grand if we'd like to bring Lily home to live with us forever and ever.

I guess, technically, it's a maybe, since it's considered a "provisional" approval.

But, really, whatever.  I just do whatever is next to get my ticket to get over there.

From this point on, it's a little murky to me since this part of the process is all new since Lia's adoption.

But we'll do it and hopefully, hopefully, we'll be bringing in the New Year with the party girl pictured below!  :)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sunday Snapshot {My Alex}

My Alex.
Five years ago, you entered our lives like a pint-size hurricane and haven't slowed down one bit since.

You are always on the move.  Always.

In fact, many days I feel like we are The Family Circus and you are my little Jeffey always moving  from point A to point B in a maze of dotted lines all over the funny papers.

And not only do you give 100% physically, you give 100% emotionally.
We are either on the mountain top or in the valley.
But we're learning to find the middle ground.
Like when I snapped this telling shot.
You were not happy about the fact that we were going to walk around the park before going to get some dinner.
Because as I recall, you were "starfing to def."
But when asked to conform to my plans, you gave it your best and mustered up this "smile" for the camera.
I appreciate the effort, big guy.

When asked what you want to be when you grow up, the answer never changes:  a baseball player.
But if that doesn't pan out, you have a back up plan.
"I guess I'll just stay here," you say of your home.  "'Cause I just like it here."
Good to know.
Starting kindergarten this year made me a little nervous.  Would you be able to sit still long enough to focus on our work?  Or was I going to have to invent an aerobics phonics program?

Boy was I surprised when you not only gave me your attention, you asked to do more!

But it wasn't too long before, in typical Alex fashion, you approached me one night and said, "Hey Mom, I think I'm going to skip school tomorrow.  It's my fall break."

Nice try, big fella.

I love to look in my rear view mirror and see you rocking out to Newsboys, Audio Adrenaline or a little DC Talk.

If there's a gene for coolness, you own it.

In fact, I think you might be the only five year old I know who has his own theme song.

"Wherever We Go (That's Where the Party's At) by Newsboys.

Really, what else would it be?

You are growing up so fast.  It seems like only yesterday when I found you, at the ripe old age of 2, standing on a chair at my kitchen counter waiting for your toast (that you had made yourself) to pop out of the toaster.

I must say I was impressed.

A nervous wreck over what else you might attempt, but impressed nonetheless.

I always like to imagine what you might have been had you lived at any other time in history.

A Spartan soldier?

A warrior chief?

One of David's mighty men of valor?

But you weren't born at any other time.  You are here now.

And I am eagerly awaiting to see the plan God has for the rest of your action-packed days while thanking Him continually that He saw fit to intersect your precious life with mine.

Ni Hao Y'all

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Just a Few Things...

...that make me smile.

(In no particular order).

Pumpkin spice lattes (non-fat, no whip)
I said "smile," not "squeal with delight "  :)
Little boys in rubber boots

That face

Team spirit

A little girl's love for her daddy

Apples straight from the tree
(Especially if that tree is not in my yard)

 Having a little time to myself just to think

 Picnics in the park

 Bojangles for Sunday brunch
(Not because I like Bojangles food, 'cause I don't.  But I LOVE not cooking).
 Goofy smiles

 And sweet ones, too

 Lazy Sundays

Kids in trees enjoying a beautiful day

Hope your Thursday is full of smiles!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Monday, October 18, 2010

An Apple A Day...

On their way home from Blacksburg, the crew stopped by Grandma and Pop Paw's for a visit.

And brought home a box full of sweetness...

Nothing quite like an apple off of one of Pop Paw's trees...

Except for maybe the homemade apple butter...

And Aunt Linda's  home made fried apple pies ...

And Grandma's jams and jellies...

And all the other home grown goodies that came along with them.

Mmmm, now that's what I'm talking about!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

{Sunday Snapshot} Our Story

A little over two years ago we received a phone call about a little girl in China who had just turned one, who had a special need, and who was in need of a family to love her.

I remember my fear.  My concerns over her special need.   We had checked it off as a need we would consider, but this was no checklist.  This was forever.

What would it mean for her?  What would it mean for us and for our other kids at home?  Are we really meant to be her forever family?

I remember, after talking with my husband, calling our social worker back to say "Yes, we accept" but instead, being overcome with doubt, having to say, "I'm sorry.  I just need to think about it a little longer."

I believe there are times when it's an obvious "yes."  And times when it's a difficult "no."  But this particular time was a time when fear of the unknown almost caused me to miss out on something (and someone) too beautiful for words.

How thankful I am that in that moment, in the midst of my storm of  fear and doubt, He impressed these words upon my heart,  "Trust Me.  And simply love her as I do."  A reminder that I didn't need, nor should I expect to know, all the details concerning the future.  I just needed to trust the One who did know and who equips those who follow His call.

From that point on, though the future was no clearer, there was peace.  And joy. And anticipation of what was to come.

I picked up the phone.  I called.  And I said, "Yes, we accept her referral."

And I'm so glad I did.  Because I simply cannot imagine my life without this little girl.

Ni Hao Y'all

Saturday, October 16, 2010

One man...

...with the foresight to refrain from dumping his season ticket allotment despite his beloved team's dismal start.

One man...
...with the courage to take three children on the road for three hours.

Simply to teach them the value of ...

...a little Hokie pride...

...a little Hokie spirit...

...and most importantly, the value of a big ol' hamburger from Mike's Grill...

Train a child in the way he should go...

 and when he is old he will not turn from it.

Go Hokies :)