Family picture

Family picture

Friday, November 23, 2012

We are thankful for . . .

A God who loves us more than we can fathom . . .

Family and friends we hold dear (those near and far)

The marriage vows we cherish . . .

Our precious, amazing children . . .

The selfless people around the world who take care of the orphan and oppresssed . . .

Jocelyn and her family in Japan

Linny and her family's organization - International Voice of the Orphan

Medical personnel in China willing to lend a hand

Tim and Pam Baker from Shepherd's Field

(Just a few of the many wonderful and giving people being the hands and feet of Jesus around the world)

And a country where we still have so much personal freedom.

Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Thanksgiving lesson

Our homeschool co-op is so much fun!  Our littles have classes and field trips with others in the co-op frequently, and yesterday we had our Thanksgiving day together.

Tara presenting the Mayflower voyage

Concentration - so cute

Beautiful daughter

Sweet smile

Ready to begin

Busy little hands

Showing their work to us. 
Notice the yummy treats - brownie Mayflowers!

Happy children proud of their work

The finished projects -  Pilgrim houses with steep roofs, Mayflower ships with play figures,
bean bag toss Mayflower ships, and turtles that symbolize the rebirth through Christ

Throughout our time in homeschooling, Kevin and I have become homeschooling's biggest fans.  At first, being public school teachers, we could.not.even.imagine putting our kids in homeschooling (what with all of the stereotyping we knew about), but now, after seeing how wonderful it is, we simply can not imagine putting our children back in a formal school setting.

Homeschooling is the best of both worlds as we see it.  We can give our children one-on-one attention to help them learn to be the best they can be academically while still providing that all important socialization piece.  We have a 4-H group, frequent homeschooling events, church activities, sports, and friends and family regularly in our school year and daily lives. 

In addition and perhaps more importantly, we still have time to form that family bond they all three missed out on so early in life.  Our children are very close to each other.  They have normal squabbles from time to time, but they really enjoy playing together, helping each other, and looking out for one another.  It is touching to see.

Thanking God that we still live in a country where homeschooling is legal.  Yes, it is against the law in some countries, and to be quite honest, when this movement began back about 30 years or so ago, many homeschooling families did have to worry about our government dictating what they could and could not do.  So we are ever cautious about our right to homeschooling being lost.  It is so important for hs families to keep up on the latest legislation in our states' and nation's courts.  We really, really don't want to lose the right to educate our children as we see fit.

Today we are thankful for a house full of little children to teach, guide, and direct and very humbled that our God would trust us to do so!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Almost two less orphans!

When our group served at our Philip's foster village in China last June, one child in particular touched our hearts (as they all did).  But this one young man, Jospeh, will be turning 14 next spring.  If he had not found a family by then, he would never be able to be adopted.

Joseph was keenly aware that his time was running out.  He prayed often for a family of his own.  He watched with despair as his good friends, one by one, left the village to be adopted into loving families of their own.

In fact, after one such friend found out that he too would be leaving to join his forever family last summer, Joseph told one of the interns, a special young lady named Melissa, that he was losing hope of ever finding his own family.

Joseph eating lunch at the foster village


All who knew Joseph personally or who had followed Melissa's blog advocating for prayers to find him a family were broken hearted for this young man.  Oh, how the prayers went up to Heaven for Joseph.

But God . . .

He was already working behind the scenes to bring this amazing child into a loving, Christ-following family of his very own. 

Kai Joseph now knows that he indeed does have a family! 
See his sweet, sweet smile.  It melts my heart.  I know it
melts his family's hearts!

And now . . .

That special family leaves in just six days !!!

Six days until they can fly across the world to unite with not one, but two precious sons from China.  They were already in the process to adopt on dear son, Eli, when God directed them to adopt Joseph as well!

Eli is coming home, too!
Just a little bit of time now, and there will be two less orphans! 

Everyone is so, so, so excited to see these two boys join their rightful place in a family of their own.  You can click here to follow their journey home.  Could you pray for this family and their two new sons as they begin their adoption journey?  There may be lots of transition and adjustment issues as they form the bond that will last forever, and they will need prayers lifted on their behalf. 

Can hardly wait to see pictures of those two in the arms of their very own mama and baba!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Fall Fun

Fall is absolutely my most favorite season of the year. 

I love the colors,

The crispness in the air,

and the coziness of our home on a chilly evening.

I love trips to the apple orchard,

Adorable trick-or-treaters,

Silly people carving pumpkins,

Pretty table settings in autumn colors,

And our three-generation table at a Ladies' Tea.

But most of all,

I love our God who designed fall in the first place!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

32 years ago

Thirty-two years ago today,

November 1, 1980

I married the love of my life!

So much has changed since then.

  Our dads are in Heaven now. 

We have four amazing children to love and cherish. . .

And we are a wee bit older . . .

But one thing has stayed the same . . .

I am still deeply in love with this man.

When God gave me Kevin, He made me complete.