Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Book Tag


Well - I was tagged again (awhile ago now!!) and this one was so hard for me - not because I have a lack of books to pull from, but because I could hardly narrow it down!!! SO - after much thought - here goes!!

A Book that Changed My Life: Family Nobody Wanted
(I read this in elementary school - it has stuck with me. hmmm....)
A Book I have Read More than Once: Jamberry
(All of my kids have loved this one!!!)

A Book to Take to a Deserted Island: Bible - I have to think that that would keep me busy for quite awhile - and where better to meditate on those truths?!?!

A Book that Made me Laugh: Secret Life of Bees

A Book that Made me Cry: Where the Red Fern Grows
or: Stone Fox (Get out the tissues!!!)

A Book I wish I had Written: Anne of Green Gables
(Must have been written by a "kindred spirit"!!)

A Book I wish had Never Been Written: any with subject of abusing children - I hate that!!!

A Book I am currently Reading: Sharp North
(I try to stay "current" with teen novels as that is what I buy for the library - this one is a good read - cloning theme.)

A Book I am Planning to Read: Memory Keeper's Daughter

Well - there it is.....Becky's Book Tag!!!!

Now - just for the fun - I tag Jen, Sara, and Verna.

Monday, August 28, 2006

School's In Session



Well - school has started over here and Mom's busy again!!! Some moms look forward to school starting and their house gets quieter - mine just gets busier!! We homeschool and, don't get me wrong, I LOVE it (most days!!) but it does make for a much busier time for us - especially Mom!! So - if my posts are less frequent - don't give up on me - just bear with me!

We have a full school year this year with a 3rd, 4th, and 5th grader and a 2 year old! AND - all three boys on different hockey teams - IF we make it through this year - it will definately be by God's grace only!!!! :)

So enjoy the smile - enjoy the Fall-feel (even if only for today!) - and grab a good book and read for awhile - that's probably what we are doing over here!!

Friday, August 25, 2006

I've Been Tagged

Sandra tagged me - and she said such nice things about Chloe that I had to respond!!! :) This tag is about our kids. We are supposed to say three things about each of our children - I know what you are already saying - "Good grief, we'll be here all day!!!" I'll keep it to three!!

Micah is our first-born and has all the characteristics of one too! He is a perfectionist in EVERYTHING. He wants to please - EVERYONE!! And he is my lover of books - he devours them. Micah is an incredible big brother!!









Caleb was our "middle child" before Chloe's arrival. But Caleb never wants to be a typical "middle child". Caleb is the jokster of the family - he is the one who will hide and then jump out and scare you when you walk by. Caleb is our animal-lover. He is also the biggest proponent of adoption at our house - both animals and little Chinese girls!!!! :)


Aaron is our "bright spot." He always wants to laugh and make you laugh - he has many jokes ready to go and if he doesn't have one, he'll make one up. He is also our resident science lover and is always asking to do a science experiment!! One thing I especially love about Aaron is how he puts his needs aside and thinks of others.




Chloe is ALL GIRL!!! She loves anything pretty and anything DORA!! She continually wants kisses and we are pretty sure she makes up "owies" to get extra kisses out of us!! She is an unexpected gift to all of us!!


Whew - that was a lot to think about!!! Now I'll tag Sara,
Verna, Jen, and Jenny. Go to it, girls!!

Favorite Photo Friday

Everybody ought to have HOCKEY BROTHERS!!!!!
(We were missing one hockey brother that day - He was out playing hockey!!!!)

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Smoothie Girl



Chloe is our smoothie girl - when she hears that blender - she is right there (even when we try to sneak coffee smoothies after she is in bed) - she starts knocking on her door and saying, "Moothie, Moothie!!" (She doesn't put the "S" on the front - it's just "Moothie" to her!!) Anyway- I caught her on camera drinking her smoothie!!!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Morning Person

I will admit it - I have a horrible time getting up early. I am not motivated by a beautiful sunrise, cup of coffee (and I LOVE coffee), or much of anything else!!! So - I have to work at this - that is why I must go public and announce that I got up EARLY today!! Joe left for work - and I got up!! I can hear the applause now!! I got up, made a pot of coffee, ate my new Caribou Coffee granola bar (yes, those almost could entice me to get up early everyday!!!) and read. It was a quiet, relaxing morning - while it lasted! Now I have four awake and ready to "take on the day". So -Ready or Not - here I go to take it on with them!

Monday, August 21, 2006

Adding to our Family


I realized (after I received an email) that I haven't posted at all on our blog about our family plans in the future. We are (for those of you who haven't heard - Sit down!!) in the stages of working towards another China adoption. Yes - somedays I think we are crazy too - but we have definately seen God's hand, yet again, and feel Him calling us to add to our family - one more time. (We say one more time because China's rule is only to have five children in the home - NO MORE - now we could adopt from another country, but I kind of like their rule too!!! :) )

When we first got home with Chloe - I bet we hadn't been home two months - and our boys starting putting change in a little bank - we asked them what they were saving for and they told us, "Another sister from China." Joe and I were shocked - we hadn't said anything to them about another adoption, and frankly, we thought we were DONE!! I think God planted that in their hearts though - it started us praying and still God is leading without shutting a door. We are moving, in some ways, faster than we thought - we are waiting right now on fingerprints and our Dossier (for those of you who aren't familiar with adoption lingo - the LARGE packet of information we have to put together to send to China) is ready to go. Once we started moving - it wasn't too hard to put everything together again since we had just done all of this for Chloe's adoption. So - we are hoping our papers will go to China late September or early October and then we wait. Things have changed a lot in China since Chloe's adoption so even once our papers are in China - we still have a YEAR to wait until we get our next little one's picture (Referral, as it's called in adoption land!!). We would covet your prayers - a year is a long time to wait but we also have a lot to work on here at home so know we will keep busy AND it gives us a year to plan to add another little one to our bunch. We would also covet your prayers about finances - God always seems to keep us praying about money!!! He provided so incredibly last time and so far, is again showing us His infinite power again. I do have to share - this is so neat - we had an anonymous family ask if they could give money to help a family adopt from China - we have no idea who they are - but we are indeed SO THANKFUL for their generous gift. It has gotten us moving without paperwork and even gives us a little extra money to use when we get our referral next year.

Somedays I honestly think, "What in the world are we doing?" Other days I am so excited for our family - we have been so blessed with Chloe and we are already praying that God is preparing just the right little one for us again. Chloe was such an incredible match - only God could have done that for us! Five kids - that can be a bit overwhelming - but four requires a lot of grace too!!! :) So, I keep trusting Him for His grace and help. We just want to be obedient and if we can reach one more child and give them a home - that is what we want to do. I have to say truthfully too that Chloe is a lot of work by herself - I remember having three in diapers and that was a lot of work, but they did entertain each other and that was nice. So - it will be nice to have two together here at the end (yes, Dad and Mom, we did say end..........at least that's OUR plan!!!).

So thanks for praying for us - we do believe we will need that support!! And we are excited to watch God show Himself to us again. We DO have a BIG GOD!!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

The Fatherless...

We had a guest speaker today at church - she is a single gal that lives in the Ukraine all during the year and works at an orphange for older children - in the summer she comes back to the U.S. and goes around to churches and speaks on adoption and the great need in the Ukraine. She was wonderful to hear speak but it really touched my heart - that orphange is their last stop before they "hit the streets" on try to live on their own - these kids may never know a father or a mother. And then how will they succeed?? Many do not - the statistics are staggering - it just saddens me. We took a prayer card - you could choose children in the orphanage to pray for - we chose a little boy - born the same year as our Caleb - he's 10 already - something about all of that really hit home to me - boys just like mine with no fathers or mothers - how much we've been blessed with Chloe through adoption - we'll just keep praying that God moves people to love these little ones like He loves us and has adopted us. I also want to remember to pray for people like Michelle who spend their lives giving to ones that have so little. To end on a "lighter" note - I found this surfing the internet the other day - makes me smile.......

Friday, August 18, 2006

FAVORITE PHOTO FRIDAY!!!!


Ok - I never would have posted this if you hadn't all seen her "cuteness" already - :) Silly girl - she loves to put on these crazy glasses and make us all laugh!!

Have A Good Day All!!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Dumb Laws

I found this on the internet - I knew it was good to live here for more than the corn - - - - - -

Iowa Crazy Law

It is a violation of the law to sell or distribute drugs or narcotics without having first obtained the appropriate Iowa drug tax stamp.

A man with a moustache may never kiss a woman in public.

Kisses may last for no more than five minutes.

One-armed piano players must perform for free.
Go here to check out a law in your state you just might be breaking!!!

http://www.ahajokes.com/stupid_laws.html

God's Handiwork















Ok - I went outside the other night - with the camera and the VERY LONG LENS - I mean the one that you almost need three other people just to hold the lens up - Joe was laughing by the way - and I stood outside forever to get just the right pictures - you see to a photographer timing is everything - I needed the sun to be just in the right spot - and the clouds needed to cooperate as well - we had storms going over but higher clouds that were just beautiful - So, yes, as I was saying, I'm out in the yard snapping picture after picture - I came inside and downloaded them and Joe humored me and looked at them for awhile - he said they looked "nice" - I expected thunderous applause when he saw these - oh well, you had to be there to appreciate the beauty - BUT I did want to post them so that you can say you saw them here first before National Geographic comes to purchase them for their next issue. I will keep you posted on my budding career in photography!! Until then - I won't quit my day job!!! :)

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I just want to publically say a HUGE THANK YOU to Sandra for the new look on my blog! She was gracious to even be willing to do that for me and then SO patient to help me when it wasn't looking "quite right"!! I am thankful for her talents in this blogging thing - my HTML knowledge is sparse so I am in awe of her tech-savvy talent!! Thanks again, Sandra - I love it!

Too Busy???

I have been so challenged lately - I am doing a wonderful Biblestudy called Holy Habits by Mimi Wilson. Our lesson this week was on God's name "Yahweh Shalom" meaning "Peace". I had never thought of claiming that peace for my family or myself. I assumed that in this world busyness was expected and to be worked around as best as possible! Wow - we run, run, run and where does our peace go? I loved this, (well actually I hate it because it's so convicting!!), "I was sending the message that anything was all right as long as Mom didn't have to slow down to deal with it." How often do I treat my family, kids especially, like they are an inconvenience in my day? God calls our children blessings - hmmmmmm.

Another good quote, "...the faster I moved, the less control I had over everything in my life. When you're running a race, you can sprint because the race only lasts a short time. But when you sprint day in and day out, you use up what God has supplied for emergencies. I was tapping into my reserves in order to get through each day; as a result I was close to burnout." Ok, I'm not saying I'm burned out over here BUT I am re-prioritizing - with SO many GOOD things out there to do - I am starting to ask - what is THE BEST thing for my family and myself?

The author goes on to say, "....Peace of God - an inner settling, a calmness of soul despite our circumstances or activities - is achieved only when our needs are filled with wholeness and a harmony of relationship with God." WOW - I could go on and on sharing other great quotes - and it's not as if I haven't heard it before in my 30+ years (ok, I'll never tell EXACTLY how many the "+" stands for!!) of church, Sunday School, biblestudies, etc. Maybe it's just timing in my life right now - God is really working on my heart about how I use my time and making sure what I am doing - how I am spending my time - is contributing to a peaceful spirit in my life and my home. I've read this verse a million times but it seems so fitting, "Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive [sinful] way in me..." Psalm 139: 23-24.

Good thing I'm a work in progress - others would have given up on me LONG AGO!!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Siblings

When we began our process to adopt Chloe we prayed for many things - one being that God would give us a little girl that would melt right into our family - Wow - God is amazing!! Even though she is seven years younger than our youngest son, she just fits right in and the boys love on her like she's always been with us.
I couldn't resist this photo. Chloe woke up from her nap yesterday (hence the bedhead) and called for the boys - our youngest came in, got in her bed with her, and read Miss Spider's Sunny Patch to her. I don't know too many 8 (almost 9) year olds that would be so willing to read Miss Spider (for the 50th time!!!) - AND give up computer time to do it! We are so blessed - children are such a blessing from the Lord.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Guilty as Charged


Ok - I feel like I need to come clean - my name is Becky and I am addicted!! All of the men in my family love computer games - they would play all day long (admit it Joe, you would too). I do not enjoy their games - I think they are a waste of time and energy (although my boys know more about history and wars than I will ever know - guess they are good for something). So - I run across this game you download to your computer - ok, I thought, I'll try it.

I AM HOOKED!!

What do I do after I put Chloe down for a nap - one quick game of Bubble Breaker. But that is why I feel the need to "come clean" - my ONE game stretches into three, four and maybe even five!! So - by publically announcing my addiction I am hoping to "break free"!!
I do hope none of you struggle with such things - it is my "simple mind" that sees the adventure in this game, I am sure. But so be it - I will try to conquer this addiction. Oh, and by the way - just see if you can break 700 - I dare ya!!!!! :)

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Words by Chloe.....

What a two year old we have! Yesterday we went to the grocery store and that is always an adventure with Chloe - you don't know how often we've gotten up to the checkout lane and said to each other, "Did you put that in the cart?" The answer is always NO - it was Chloe! So we were shopping yesterday and Chloe picked up a bag of chips - I told her no, that we didn't need those. She looked up at me and said, "Oh shoot!!" and promptly put them back!! Joe and I had all we could do not to laugh out loud - we don't want her saying that on a regular basis. Guess you now know what I say a lot!!

Friday, August 11, 2006

Favorite Photo Friday


Favorite Photo Friday!!!!

This was YEARS ago, but all three had gotten into the stickers that morning - they were covered - I think I took the picture after we had taken some off already - Where was their mother anyway?!?!?! Makes me remember how busy I was those days too!!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Happy Birthday Sophia

My Pingjiang "Sister", Sophia is TWO TODAY!!! I can't be there to help her open her presents, but I can put her picture on my blog!! Happy Birthday Sophia - Eat lots of cake (you know I would!!). Love, Chloe

(Emily is on the left, Chloe in the middle, and Sophia on the right)

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

4 Things You May Not Have Known About Me...

I got this on email, but thought it would be a fun blog post.......

4 Jobs I have had in my Life.....
  1. Bookstore Clerk
  2. Teacher
  3. Librarian
  4. Radon Detector (people fell for it too!!!)

4 Movies I would watch over and over......

  1. Green Card
  2. China's Lost Girls
  3. Anne of Green Gables
  4. I'm out - I'm not a big movie watcher!!

4 Places I have lived.....

  1. Iowa
  2. Michigan
  3. Iowa
  4. I don't get around much!!!

4 TV Shows I love to watch........

  1. Alf - they never should have taken it off the air!!!
  2. I shouldn't admit this - but I have no others - I rarely sit and watch TV!!!
  3. I'll take suggestions at this point!!!!

4 Places I have been on Vacation......

  1. Washington
  2. Hawaii
  3. China :)
  4. Arizona
  5. Washington D.C.
  6. Delaware
  7. Utah
  8. See - I do get out alot though!!!

4 Websites I visit Daily.....

  1. Blogs (WAY TOO MANY TO LIST)
  2. Bethany's Forums
  3. MSN - it's my homepage! :)
  4. Torani - I always want a new Expresso recipe!

4 of my favorite foods.........

  1. Spaghetti
  2. Tacos
  3. McDonalds!!!!!!!!
  4. COFFEE - one of the major parts of the food pyramid!!

4 places I would like to be right now.......

  1. Curled up with a good book
  2. Inside watching a good blizzard
  3. Reading to my kids - all on the couch together
  4. With my family

Why didn't they ask the 4 places I would like to be shopping???
Or - the 4 best books to read??? Oh for more time and space on the blog!!!

OK - now I tag Jenny, Jen, Verna, and Sara!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, August 07, 2006

More from our weekend....




Here are some fun photos to share of when our kids met up - SO FUN!!!!

Fun Weekend

We had such a fun weekend - our good friends from Michigan were making a trip our way so we got to meet up at Grandpa and Grandma's house for the weekend - we had a great time seeing dear friends AND playing with Grandpa and Grandma - is there anything better?!?!?!?

This picture is with Grandpa and Grandma - we'll post more with our friends later!

Friday, August 04, 2006

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

A Good Read

Ok - I am a librarian you know - at some point I have to post about a good book. SO - here it is. I just finished Digging to America by Anne Tyler and LOVED IT!!! I have never read an Anne Tyler book before but, this being my first, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It is about two families that adopt Korean daughters and their stories of differences in raising them, etc. Maybe I loved it most because of having adopted - a lot of it "rang true" to me - it is not one of those suspenseful thrillers but a great family story that makes you feel good when you finish it. Sadly enough, it is not often that I finish a book that I feel I can refer onto others but this is one that I have been recommending - it is a winner!!
When you are harvesting your crops and forget to bring in a bundle of grain from your field, don't go back to get it. Leave it for the foreigners, orphans and widows. Then the LORD your God will bless you in all you do.
~Deuteronomy 24:19

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