Friday, November 30, 2012

Guess he likes us

Hudson said something about when he was in my tummy. I explained, once again, that he grew in his birth mother's tummy, then lived with his foster mother, and then came to live with me and daddy...we adopted you. He grinned and said "I like that you and daddy did that" !  I told him that me and daddy were glad too :)

In other news, Abby had her first basketball game yesterday.  She's never touched a basketball before 2 weeks ago.  She was so nervous and really had no clue how the game works.  I was so proud of her.  After getting in a few minutes of play time and watching her more experienced friends playing, she grabbed a loose ball and took a shot!  

Carter is writing lots of praise and worship songs.  The boy is a teen genius in the music dept.  

Dillon has his first school choir performance tomorrow.  He wanted to join choir despite his apraxia and articulation disorder. He can't sing...I don't mean he is flat or tone deaf...I mean he truly cannot sing thanks to the speech disorders robbing him of that ability. I'm so proud of him for trying hard things.  He also begins Upward Basketball next month.  Way to try, my sweet boy!

Oh, I got robbed today.  I'm fine, just was a walking naive target that fell for the old "Excuse me man, I really need to call my ride, can I use your phone?"  Took it and ran like lightening, in broad daylight in front of Super Target!  I'm just so thankful he didn't take my purse, wedding ring, or me!

And 2 more tidbits:  I got my eyebrows threaded!  OUCH.  But, it tamed my bushy brows so well and is supposedly better for your skin than waxing.  Next, you MUST buy Gateway Worship's newest album "Forever Yours."  Ahhh-mazing!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Gracious sakes alive...he's Five

Hudson turns 5 the 27th.  Such a smart boy.  Above is one of his referral pictures.  Hilarious cheeks! And, for your enjoyment, his theology is pretty good too:
Hudson told Mike that Santa and Jesus live in his heart.  Mike then told Hudson that Jesus is much more important than Santa.  To this, Hudson replied "Yeah, Jesus makes the sun move and the rain come down and Santa just brings us a bunch of junk."!!!  That's MY boy :)
You know, when your child joins your family at 21months of age, the 5th bday comes so quickly.  Where did my baby go???

Thursday, November 22, 2012

It can't really be Thanksgiving morning can it??

Seriously, this year is flying!!  Since school started mid August, the days are a blur.  I love Thanksgiving and want to enjoy these sweet days, not watch them fly by me. My paternal grandfather passed away on Thanksgiving 24 years ago.  And, this year will be the first holidays without my maternal grandfather. My parents are selling our family home of 27 years and embarking on an adventure that I'm sure their peers think is nuts(I think it sounds F-U-N).  The only guarantee in life is change.

This morning an attitude of gratitude is in order. I'm thankful for
Jesus, my Lord
my healthy family and a husband who supports me in my wild ideas
my own health--running the Turkey Trot 5K with my buddies this morning
my warm home that houses my most precious treasures--whom are all still asleep this morning
our extended familys on both sides
Susie's surgery went well and her lymph nodes are free of cancer
clean water every single time I turn on the faucet
my job that offers awesome benefits for working part-time
both schools the kids attend....ah-mazing
Rosas and Taco Tuesdays
our sweet, fun, church
a teenage son who doesn't give us a lick of trouble
my dear old minivan that has 203000 miles on it and runs great(paid for!)
my coffee with french vanilla creamer
antibiotics to kill Hudson's "ear confection" as he calls it
that God led us to adopt 3 angels from South Korea--Carter cackles in joy watching his crazy little brothers and Abby loves to help Carter--like a little momma
Vaseline--I'm addicted to it being a constant presence on my lips

Pics to follow of our sweet holiday.  But, to help you all remember to keep your priorities straight

Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.  Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked. Psalm 82:3-4

Monday, November 19, 2012

My friend has breast cancer

There, I said it!  I've not wanted to say it out loud.  Kind of like, when you say something out loud, it is real, intiendo?
I haven't wanted to tell the story on here because this isn't my story.  Susie has is her story.  But, it affects me too and I know she is fine with my sharing the testimony and I want some of you e-friends to pray and rejoice over her advance!
Remember how she was accompanying us on the Korea trip?  Well, the day before we were to fly to Seoul, she had a follow up sonogram for a suspicious spot.  This was nothing to worry about because she has a follow up exam every year for dense spots. At 11:15 that morning, I get a phone call from her and I knew her world was crumbling.  I dashed to the hospital where to office was.  Basically, the radiologist was so sure it was cancer that she wanted to biopsy the mass within a few hours.  So at 2:30, Susie had a biopsy.  I paced back and forth in the exam room begging God for it to not be malignant.  By 4pm Susie knew.  I could see it in her face and demeanor; she had breast cancer.  We both knew the Korea trip was out of the question.  Then the doctor's aftercare instructions stated that she couldn't push or pull anything over 5 pounds with the right arm.  Uhh, international trips require lugging a bit more than 5 pounds! 
The next morning, Mom, Abby, and I flew to Korea and Susie stayed home to be with her hubby and 2 children. 
The funny thing is, she feels perfectly fine and healthy.  She doesn't feel like she has cancer.  On Wednesday morning, the day before Thanksgiving, she will have a double mastectomy.  You wouldn't believe her attitude.  She has joked about attending her 30th highschool reunion next summer with new girls, been thankful, joyful, and upbeat.  Oh sure, there are struggles with fear and not sleeping well.  But, we are all praying for healing and that after surgery, she will be free and clear....never to have cancer again!  You know, there are some theologians who say that the healing miracles have ceased, that God doesn't work that way anymore.  BULL CRUD!  Hebrews 13:8 says Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.  Isaiah 53:5

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Abby's award winning chili!

Tonight was our school's huge Thanksgiving extravaganza complete with chili cookoff, class project and class gift basket auction, carnival games, and enormous bonfire that is dug in a pit.  62 turkeys will be slowly cooked under the embers tonight with senior boys and their dads camping out to watch the pit.  Abby won the student division of the chili cookoff.  Her's was called Texas Chili with a Korean twist!  It had a secret Korean ingredient ;)
I have no pictures because I left my camera's battery charger plugged in to the wall in the guesthouse in Seoul.  Bummer dude. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Acceptance letter!

Friday I was bemoaning to my coworkers that I'd still not heard from the university regarding my application to the Master's program.  Thirty minutes later, the email came!  I've been accepted to begin the Nurse Practitioner's program in January! Exciting, terrifying, overwhelming, super fun...all of those feelings at one time.  I'm not worried about learning the content.  It is just that I'm not sure I really want to be in school again :(  ICK.  However, it will be really worth it.  3 years...I can do this! I'm choosing the Family Nurse Practitioner track so I can treat babies to elderly.  You know what I'm so excited to learn?  Suturing!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

tooting the horn...on Dillon

Sweet boy is doing so great lately!  I think his social appropriateness for his age has jumped up by a big leap.  He is getting and using sarcasm and playing little jokes on us.  His teaches report that he loves to participate in class and if he doesn't know the answer to a question, he says "oh, I forgot"!  I love it.  Dillon read a simple book to us a few nights ago and only needed help on a few words.  I think he is making great progress right now.  Unfortunately, the speech articulation disorder isn't.  When tired, his words slur so badly that it doesn't sound like he is speaking English.  But, lets celebrate the good!  He will play Upward Basketball this winter and I'm teaching him some basic skills.  Dillon will shoot and shoot and shoot the ball and never give up.  If typically developing children had half the uumph and heart that he has, they'd accomplish anything!  So proud of him.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Consider Adoption Video to go with prior post

Why I didn't write a special Orphan Sunday post yesterday

It's complicated.  That is why.  Yesterday was National Orphan Sunday.  This day was dedicated to education and focus on the global orphan crisis and the need for good foster parents.  I love foster care and adoption. In fact, I've been an annoying and irritating, spokesperson for Christians to get their butts in gear and care for orphans and foster children for many years( I'm thankful that our little church loves adoption. We have the Shoes for Orphan Souls drive every March. We host the Heart Gallery(display of foster children who need adoptive homes) for 3 weeks every October. Our pastor supports and encourages adoption and foster care. Many of our church partners are foster parents and/or adoptive parents).

So, why was I quiet this year?  Because I'm frustrated and people setting aside  one Sunday a year to recognize this huge issue really isn't going to change anything.  I'm frustrated at the lack of Jesus followers who truly care about this issue.  Sure, many do care and are involved; many more than 10 years ago.  For that I'm grateful. However, most Christians spend more money on their vehicles and cell phones than they do on advocating for the fatherless(Mike and I do too)!  There is room at most tables for another child, but not room in most hearts. I'm also frustrated at the state of adoption procedures around the world and in our own country.  163 million orphaned children in the world and, yet, the countries with adoption programs make it so difficult to give these children homes.  Certainly, there must be laws and protocols in place to protect the children from human-trafficking and screen families. However, the wait times are way too long.  The paperwork required is cumbersome, the fees are burdensome, the age of children coming home are older and, therefore, placing the children at risk for attachment problems. In our own country, the foster system is doing its best with overwhelming numbers(500,000 kids in foster care in the US).  Still, foster parents jump through ridiculous hurdles.  Foster-to-adopt parents get their hearts broken when a judge or caseworker rules in favor of the birth family to have repeated chances at getting their lives back together, even though the foster family is ready, equipped, and wants to give the child a permanent, adoptive family!  I've watched my sister and her husband go through this several times and they grieved over children they thought might be their next son or daughter.
What is the answer?  I don't know.  I've been to children's homes in Korea, Nicaragua, and Haiti.  Some do a great job, some do a horrible job.  Funding is inequitable. How do we help with orphan care in a sustainable manner?  How do we make a difference in people's family situations and healthcare so that birthmothers don't die from disease and children don't have to be abandonded or removed due to mistreatment?
This problem is overwhelming and heartbreaking.  But, we can't give up.  The Bible commands us to care for the fatherless...from the very beginning of God's laws to the Jews, all the way through the New Testament. Jesus' own words in Matthew tell us that however we treat the "least of these" is how we are treating Jesus. It is hard and sometimes I want to shove it to the back of my mind and pretend the problem doesn't exist.  But, it is worth it and so wonderful.  Adoption is a beautiful miracle, not a burden.  My Korean-born children weren't a rescue project, they rescued us!  We are the ones blessed by them joining our family.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Super fun night

What a special treat tonight was.  I should be in bed since I work tomorrow.  But, I'm still excited and wanted to get these pics up.  Homecoming was tonight.  Carter took a lovely girl. 

She ended up winning our school's version of Homecoming Queen!!
Carter was the junior representative.  I escorted him on the field as they read off some details about Carter; like when he placed his faith in Christ, what he most likes about his school, who has had the greatest spiritual impact in his life, and what his future plans are.  Clearly, judging from my face, I was listening super intently to the announcer ;)

All the grandparents drove in for the festivities and even Mike's sister, her husband, and 2 girls.  We had a great time.  I keep realizing how little time I have left with Carter at home.  I must enjoy and relish every second.  It goes by so quickly and these memories are precious!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Halloween was a might smaller than usual

Our house is usually the place to be for Halloween.  This year, we just weren't prepared.  I'm still not in my routine after the trip(haven't run or had my quiet time in 5 days!).  We did have our usual guest, Susie and her son Jake.  My kids and Susie's kids have enjoyed Halloween together for 8 years.  Below are Dillon, aka Pizza Man wearing Nacho Libre mask(don't ask!) and Thomas the Train's Conductor.  We had a good time in our young family centered neighborhood.

Tomorrow is Homecoming and Carter was voted class Representative.  This means that his peers selected him as the boy in his class that most represents the qualities of Christ.  I'm so stinkin' proud!!!!