Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013 {feeling blessed}

Look we what we received right in time for Thanksgiving.....

A picture of Jude, and a small little update....

He is 19 months old.
And is precious.
He weighs about 24 lbs.
And is adorable.
He is about 31 inches tall.
And is amazing!

I was inspired me to purchase some really cute tops.

And look what arrived!!!

And WOW!

Do we really have a crib?


(Ahem....I gotta get working on his room.....soon!)

As we anticipate and prepare for Jude to join our family......

We remember all of our blessings!

Our Thanksgiving Day started off with the girls making Monkey Bread.

Then on to puzzle making.

*I forgot to take pictures of our fabulous meal.....I guess I was a little will do that to me!

But I did take a picture of the calm after the storm.  lol

Hard to believe that there were five very happy, hungry, and well-satisfied people sitting around this table!!!

We sure did miss our three older children, their spouses, and of course our grandson.  They were blessed to be able to spend Thanksgiving together down in Indy.

We were blessed to spend the day with my mom.

Hubby.....turkey stupor!  lol
And also....."Why are you taking a picture of me, Chris?" expression.

Finally, we watched this movie:

Perfect way to end a wonderful day.....

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Cupcakes for Grandma!

The girls wanted to do something special for Grandma's birthday.

I decided to steal borrow an idea from my dear friend Tonya.  (Who by the way always has amazing, creative ideas.....just sayin'.)

No only is this cupcake idea super cute, it is super EASY!!  And that EASY thing is how I roll.

All you need is this:

Some frosting.
Some help from Betty Crocker.
And two really cute and enthusiastic helpers!

We started out with an interesting frosting approach.  It's called "let's take a sample as we frost the cupcakes".

Moved on to unwrapping the Chocolate Kisses.

Added some sprinkles......

Constructed the "acorns".

Had to sampled some cupcakes along the way , of course.
The best part of baking.

And voila!
The perfect acorn cupcake!

Lots of Acorn/Birthday cupcakes for Grandma.

Happy Birthday Grandma!
We love you!

*Hubby took this picture.....kinda hard to get everyone smiling and looking at the camera when all they (ARCHER) wanted to do was eat the cupcakes!

I just had to post this picture.
It's too cute.
Love the upside down acorn!  

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

A time for Everything ~ Ecclesiates 3: 1- 8 {LOA!!! But not for Liam.....}

A Time for Everything

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

 Yep, this is going to be a tough post to write.

Our third adoption journey took a turn, an unexpected turn.  

A turn that has brought us to our sadness, in grief, in humbleness, in thankfulness.


It is beautiful and brutal.

It is filled with pain and sorrow.  It is filled with joy and happiness.

It is complicated.

It is complex.

It is unpredictable.

It is a faith walk.

For ALL involved.

For the child.

For the birth parents.

For the adoptive parents.

No easy answers.

No exact way of doing things.



God revealed to us, in His most perfect timing that Liam was not to be our son.

Our sweet Liam, a child for whom we prayed and loved during this past year.

Our son.

We dreamed dreams for him.

We envisioned him playing with his siblings.

We prepared our home for him.

But God had other plans for him and for us.


The same week we were to receive our LOA (Letter of Acceptance) for Liam, we also received some information about Liam that would rock our world.

After much prayer, we made a heart-breaking decision to not go forward with our adoption of Liam.

This was one of the hardest decisions we have ever had to make.

We believe in our hearts that God revealed to us that Liam's special needs were something that our family could not handle. We are not to be blessed with the privilege of being his parents. We are not equipped.

This is humbling. This is numbing. This is heartbreak.

I just wanted to languish in my grief. My husband wanted to move forward.

We received a referral from our agency. My husband took the lead. I was very unsure.....I was numb.....I was also filled with sadness, guilt, regret, anger......I needed sort through my feelings. But, my husband would not let me languish in my sorrow. My husband saw a bigger picture. He was leading, I was following.


We fell in love. We fell hard. We prayed for God's will. We submitted our PA (pre-approval) to China. Today we received China's Letter of Acceptance.

Our sweet son has an un-repaired cleft lip and palate.

He is young. Very young. He is only three months older than our grandson.



But we feel at peace. We believe this is the child who God wants us to parent. We are honored.

We are naming him Jude William. Jude means 'thanks' and 'praised'. My husband named him.

Liam will always be in my heart.  I still grieve and cry over him.  I have his picture by my bed. I pray for him constantly.

Our agency's China Director gave us some very comforting words.....she said that perhaps God used us this past year to pray and love on Liam as God was preparing the family whom HE has chosen for this sweet little boy. She said this past year Liam needed us in this capacity.

Who can understand the ways of God??? He is supreme. He knows what is best for us. He gave us Liam for a year. He used Liam to bring us to Jude.  

God has a plan for Liam.
Liam WILL have the family HE NEEDS.  
I believe this with my whole heart. I trust God completely.

For now, we move forward.
Forward to Jude.

Thankful to God.

Excited to love welcome him wholeheartedly into our hold kiss call him son!

"Always give THANKS to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." Ephesians 5:20