Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Tomorrow, I get to hop on a plane and head back to Ethiopia with a couple of teams of single adults from our church, Watermark Community Church. I have been missing Ethiopia so much, but have had the joy of knowing I would be heading back there in July, and now it's here and I couldn't be more excited. Our team has a trip blog that I wanted to let you know about so you could follow along with me there. We'll be able to post updates via satellite from the field. Rather than tell you all about the trip, just go to http://watermarkinafrica.blogspot.com where I've already written 3 blog posts about the trip, what it is, who we're ministering to, how we're going about it, etc. I'll post a couple more times before I leave to introduce people to the team.
The bitter-sweet element of the trip is that I leave Brandy and the kids back here for several days. We are so blessed to have such as amazing community around us and neighbors who will be looking out for her and them. Please pray for Brandy and I both. Thanks for tracking along with us.
Monday, July 13, 2009
We're so happy for you guys, Beau and Natalie, and grateful for your friendship.
Malachi and Beck, destined to be best buds
Malachi and Deshi . . . who's up for arranged marriage?
If you're not already following their blog, you can check out the Fournets blog at http://fournetfamily.blogspot.com/. Also, continue to pray for the Tuckers who are waiting to hear back on their next court date. They were delayed again last week. You can follow their blog at http://thetuckerfamilylife.blogspot.com/.
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
We also got to take Malachi to the beach for the first time. He was absolutely fearless, walking straight towards the ocean as soon as we set him down on the beach. There have been so many moments since we returned that I am struck with the contrast of what he is experiencing and what the orphans we met in Ethiopia experience every day. They'll likely never see the ocean or anything like it. I wrestle with what to do with that other than to encourage anyone and everyone to pray and consider whether God might be calling you to bring one of these sweet kiddos home and give them a life they can't imagine today. Enjoy Mally enjoying the beach.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
While on the trip, I had the chance to read Dr. Russell Moore's book "Adopted for Life" which is an absolute must read. In it he describes his experience of taking his boys from the orphanage in Russia by saying, "They'd never seen the sun, and they'd never felt the wind. They had never heard the sound of a car door slamming or felt like they were being carried along a road at 100 miles an hour. I noticed that they were shaking and reaching back to the orphanage in the distance . . . I whispered to Sergei, now Timothy, 'That place is a pit! If only you knew what's waiting for you -- a home with a mommy and a daddy who loves you, grandparents and great-grandparents and cousins and playmates and McDonald's Happy Meals!' But all they knew was the orphanage. It was squalid, but they had no other reference point. It was home." He goes on to say, "My whispering to my boys, 'You won't miss that orphanage' is only a shadow of something I should have known already. Our Father tells us that we too are unable to grasp what's waiting for us -- and how glorious it really is. It's hard for us to long for an inheritance to come, a harmonious Christ-ruled universe, when we've never seen anything like it . . . We must learn to be children, not orphans . . . [but] we don't fully believe that our new Father will feed us, so we hang on to our scraps and long for the regimented schedules of the orphanage from which we've come. And when our Father pushes us along to new tastes, we pout that he's not good to us. But he's readying us for glory, preparing us to take our place on thrones as heirs."
I read this with the image of Malachi with the workers fresh in my mind, how he latched on to them, how he playfully ran from us to the safety of their arms, and how in that moment, he chose the care of orphanage workers over the care of his mommy and daddy. It was so much fun to watch the slow transition that week we were in Ethiopia when he stopped reaching for African women, any African woman, rather than staying in Brandy's arms, and to think of where he is now, where those same faces you see in the video that he made with those workers are the faces we see every morning when we walk in to get him out of his crib.
My prayer is that I will increasingly grow in my love for my true Father, rejecting the old ways of the orphanage of my sin and flesh, that my life will delight in walking in His ways even when they don't make sense to me, and that I will grow in my longing for the day when my adoption is complete.
Enjoy the video!
Monday, June 15, 2009
It was such a surreal moment for sure . . . this was less than an hour from the time we got out of the airport in Addis, and we were shocked that this moment happened so soon, but obviously overjoyed. Enjoy the moment.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
PawPaw and Malachi, plus Vanna with the sign in the back.
MawMaw and Mally . . . what a great couple!
Enjoying his first bath at home
Now that's a smile!
Daddy and Mally in the pool.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
Well after 28 hours of security, airplanes, buses to the next terminal, more airplanes, immigration, customs and two claims for lost bags (got one back this morning and another on the way this afternoon), we made it home last night. The remainder of our time in Ethiopia was full of adventure that I'll catch you up on in posts to come. We enjoyed great time with the families from Gladney, took in another orphanage where we threw another party for them and the workers, returned to Kichene to drop off a delivery (post to follow this one and likely the coolest story of our trip), and took one day (Sunday) just to do nothing but love on Malachi and try to relax before what we knew would be a long trip home.
Our flight yesterday left Addis Ababa at 4:05 a.m. local time, which meant our driver picked us up at 1:30 a.m. so we could make it to the airport by 2:00 and get checked in. Fortunately, both the BMI flight and the American Airlines flights we took coming home were much better than the ones we endured on the way there, so although we spent about 20 hours of the day yesterday in a plane, it wasn't too bad. Once we arrived in Dallas, everything went about as smooth as it could through immigration and customs, and though they lost two of our bags, it wasn't that big a deal and we finally got to step through the international doors and onto U.S. soil with little Malachi for the first time.
We were greeted by a great cheer from family and friends who came out and stayed long last night to welcome us home, which was so sweet. We especially loved Josiah and Selah's reaction to Malachi as well as all the other kids who were there to welcome us home. The video below captures the moments where Josiah and Selah got to meet Mally for the first time. The quality of the filming is awful as I had my hands full and was sleep deprived, but you get the best moments in between the other stuff.
All of that to say, we're home and we're now officially a family of 5. I am certain that Brandy and I have no clue what is ahead of us, but we couldn't be more excited to find out. Malachi is doing great, and responded really well to both Josiah and Selah. No hesitation in this boy as he continues to get more and more comfortable. We can't wait to introduce him to so many of you who have played such a huge role in this process.
We also pray that our continued pursuit of adoption (this won't be our last) will compel others to consider the same and to take on this most joyfully holy task of bringing orphans into families. It was only fitting that this morning in my time alone with the Lord and as we continue on The Journey, that our reading was from Psalm 68, quoted on the front page of this blog. He does in fact place the lonely in families. The question is, will He call you to be the family for a lonely person and if He does, will you respond by saying, "Not my will, but Yours be done?" I cannot begin to tell you the joy of responding that way to His call.
Saturday, May 30, 2009
After that, we met up with Peter Abera of Children’s Hope Chest and he took us around to a couple of the orphanages that Hope Chest sponsors. The children don’t live at these orphanages, but do come there for school and for meals every day, but they weren’t there on Thursday because it was a national holiday (one of 29 on the year). We were bummed but made plans to come back the next day.
After a short rest, we went with all of the Gladney families in country to pick up their kiddos to an Ethiopian cultural dinner. The food was just like the Ethiopian food we like so much in Dallas but it was accompanied by music and cultural dancing. If you want to know where the dance style “Pop & Lock” (see So You Think You Can Dance) got it’s beginning, pretty sure it was from ancient Ethiopia. It was a long day, but so much fun.
Yesterday was by far my favorite day so far. We started off by getting the chance to meet Malachi’s aunt at the Gladney Center. It was a very sweet moment, while at the same time a very sad moment. She clearly wanted to hold Malachi, but he didn’t recognize her and clung desperately to Brandy. In the long run, that’s a good thing, but I can only imagine how tough that must have been for her. We had the chance to ask her some questions and for her to do the same through 3 way translation (English to Amharic to whatever language she spoke). We told her we were Christians and she was thrilled to hear that. She is a Protestant (7th Day Adventist) and was so thankful to know that Malachi would grow up hearing about Jesus. I got to pray with her and we exchanged the traditional 3 kisses (believers do this to symbolize the Trinity). We got the whole thing on video which will be such a good thing for Malachi as he gets older.
Speaking of Malachi, he’s doing great. He still has moments where he looks shocked that we are still there, especially after he has been with a caregiver. But we are doing a lot of attachment work with him and are being rewarded with smiles, giggles and snuggles. He is finally eating(after about four days of eating almost nothing except bottles) and so that is a relief. He sleeps like a champ and has not woken up in the night. The doctor told us yesterday that he has tonsillitis, but you wouldn’t know it as happy as he is apart from the congestion and cough at night. He’s really bonded well with Brandy, always looking for her and reaching for her if someone else is holding him, and he’s starting to warm up to me. Mostly, he just thinks I’m funny, which is great with me. One of the funniest things about him is that he knows how to whistle. Josiah will be so jealous!
After meeting Mally’s aunt, Travis, from Gladney, took us and the other families to the Gladney orphanages, specifically Kolfe and another orphanage we can’t say much less spell. We have mixed emotions about the whole thing. On one hand, getting to interact with the orphans was great. Kolfe is an older boys home, so they followed us around and we spent about 10 minutes playing American football with them, and teaching them to throw the football. They told us how much they like Beyonce and one boy even sang a Beyonce song for me(I got it on video!). They all wanted our email, so I’ll have a bunch of random emails from guys at the orphanage when I get back. The other orphanage was a co-ed home for younger children. We got to hold babies, and play on the playground with the other kids. One of the little girls who was hearing impaired latched on to Brandy and wouldn’t let go. One of the saddest things is that Brandy asked what her name was, and one girl answered that the deaf child did not have a name. She was very sweet and just grinned at her the whole time. Another of the girls braided Brandy’s hair (Belay suggested I let them do the same to me . . . the kids are totally freaked and laugh at my baldness). While we loved the boys and the children, the condition of the homes is not at all ideal and there seems to be very little structure other than feeding them and trying to educate them. We are glad there is something for them, but pray that something will be done for these orphanages to improve and to set these children up for success (I may write more in another blog post since this one is already crazy long and I’m not done).
Lastly, and the highlight of our trip apart from Malachi, we returned to the Kichene orphanage that Peter had taken us to the day before and Brandy and I got to throw a party for them. We were so impressed with the staff at the orphanage. One of the teachers, a young man, was absolutely incredible with the kids, engaging, funny, and energetic as he told them stories about Jesus and sang songs with them. The singing of the children was exuberant and so much fun to watch. Peter then asked me to teach them from God’s Word, so I spoke about the wise man and the foolish man from Matthew 7 and then taught them the song. Afterwards, they fed the children and gave each one a soda, a treat for them, and then we joined them in the meal. Again, I can’t overstate how impressed I was with Peter, Nicodemas, the director of this orphanage, and so many others. They clearly love these children and have a vision for them to know and love Jesus in addition to setting them up for success as they get older and leave the orphanage. Please join me in praying for Nicodemas and the others who are working at Kichene and for the children, that they would grow to love and follow Jesus. As the children left, we were swamped with kisses and hugs that make your heart happy. I love the delight that the Lord gives us as He delights in us when we join Him in what He is doing around the world.
OK, sorry for the long post. Lots to say and catch up on. There is no way to describe all that we saw or felt today, but we look forward to telling you all about it when we get home. Today, we are going to go shopping at the market and then we’re hoping to take it easy for the rest of the day and for tomorrow as well. Still not done here in Ethiopia, so we’ll see you soon!
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
This morning when we woke up, Malachi acted like he was in shock that we were still here. I think he expected to wake up to the usual hustle and bustle of the orphanage. After we ate breakfast we walked to the Gladney Foster Center, which is literally a block over. In fact, one of the homes is on our little street. It was so great to see the caregivers and their love for the kids. We met Beti, Malachi’s “special mother” which is what they call the primary caregiver for each child. He loved her and we really got to see his personality when he was at the foster home. He is still pretty reserved around us, as you can imagine. One of the best moments was when we got to see his room and the crib that he stayed in. The picture book we had sent him was there and Beti picked it up to show him and when he saw the pictures of Brandy and I he said, “Mama” and “Papa.” I think he made the connection with us as Mama and Papa after that, though he obviously doesn’t fully understand what that means yet. It was a great moment. It was really tough on him, and on all the kids, when the caregivers gave the kids back to their families. Malachi kept reaching for the door after we left, which is such an encouraging sign of just how well he’s been cared for by them.
We also got to see the other foster care centers including the one that the Fournet’s twins are at. It was so great to see them and we are praying especially hard that we get to see them again very soon back in Dallas. We weren’t able to see the Tucker’s little boy, but Travis who works for Gladney, was nice enough to take the package to him and to shoot some video of him that we will bring back to Cary and Sarah.
After that, they did a coffee ceremony for all of the Gladney families which was great. They roast the beans in front of you over a little pit of hot coals, and then grind the beans by hand. The coffee was amazing (at least I liked it). Afterwards, we all went to lunch together and then headed out to the Embassy. I was pretty nervous about that, just praying that we hadn’t forgotten some little piece of paperwork. All went well and the Embassy worker congratulated us and sent us on our way.
Today has been great to meet the other adoptive families. We sat next to a really nice family from North Carolina at lunch and got to know them and their journey to adoption. While waiting at the Embassy, I had a great conversation with Jed, who is the Director of the Christian Alliance for Orphans out of California. We had a great talk about all things related to orphan care and churches. He is just getting started in this post, so it will be great to get to know him better over the next couple of days.
Tomorrow, we will tour Holy Trinity Church here in Addis and then Brandy and I are going to meet up with Peter Abera, the country director for Children’s HopeChest here in Ethiopia. We are excited to see the work they are doing here in Addis caring for orphans and connecting the local churches to that cause.
All in all, it’s been a great day and we’re looking forward to the rest of our time here, though we’re anxious to get home. Thanks again for checking in and we’ll try to update again tomorrow.
Wes, Brandy, and Malachi
P.S. We posted a few pics on Facebook. Click here to see.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
After we arrived at the airport, there were no delays with immigration or customs and we met up with Travis from Gladney who introduced us to our driver, Yasoo (probably a very horrible spelling). We made a quick stop a grocery store to get some water, juice and soda and then we got to the Ayat House where we are staying this week. Mr. Waradu (sp?) showed us around this very beautiful house that is just a block from Gladney’s foster home and we got settled in briefly and took showers.
Then, the moment came. Travis arrived with Malachi and he’s absolutely beautiful, but very uncertain of what he’s doing with these white people. He reluctantly went to Brandy, but refused to come to me once he had latched on to her. The entire time he seemed to be on the verge of tears as he looked around, and I’m pretty sure if I’d taken him away from Brandy that would have pushed him over the edge. Eventually, he fell asleep in Brandy’s arms and only then did I get to hold him. He and I took a short nap together before I went to order us some lunch and now he’s sound asleep with Brandy again.
That moment is such a strange one, but so fun as well. You can see the absolute terror in his eyes as he’s handed to these strange people who introduce themselves as Mommy and Daddy. He never did really burst into tears until Daddy reached over and tickled his belly a little and that pushed him over the edge. He didn’t cry for long, but I said, “Soon that will be one of your favorite things.” Funny how that works. Pray that he adjusts well to us and that all goes well tomorrow at the Embassy.
Thanks for checking in.
Monday, May 25, 2009
We got here safely yesterday around noon, got checked into the hotel and then went to Picadilly Circus yesterday just to look around. We were proud of ourselves for navigating the buses and tube system without getting lost. We had Indian food for dinner which was awesome. That came at the recommendation of many of our friends. We pushed through the jet lag yesterday and slept ok last night, although Brandy woke up in the middle of the night and couldn't go back to sleep.
Today we are taking a bike tour of London with my friends from Fat Tire Bike Tours. We did this last year with our Burundi team during our layover and had a blast so I'm excited to take Brandy this time and do the full tour. Looks like we'll be doing taking the tour in the rain as we watch it fall from the sky right now. Oh well, they do the tour rain or shine, so we will too.
All this is a fun passing of the time until our flight at 9:30 tonight. Can't wait. Hoping to meet Malachi within 24 hours. Hard to believe.
Thanks for checking in and we'll keep you posted.
Friday, May 22, 2009
We are going to do our best to post to the blog while we're there and update you on different events. Pictures will have to wait until we get back because the internet cafes operate at dial-up speed. I talked to a friend who said it took 3 hours to download 20 pictures . . . we can wait.
We'd love your prayers for us and specifically for us to be able to relax and enjoy this experience. There is a lot of temptation to grow anxious about everything from travel to the Embassy appointment to leaving the kids here and even the meeting of Malachi, so pray that the Lord will give us peace in the midst of this time so we can enjoy this celebration.
We thought it would be fun to have the kids shoot a video for Malachi that we can show him when we're there to introduce themselves to him. Don't tell Josiah, but Selah's video was the best! Thanks again for following along and keep checking in for more news!!!
Friday, May 8, 2009
As Mother's Day approaches, it is bittersweet...I think about my children and how much delight they bring me. I think back to past mothers days when it was so painful to NOT be a mother. I think about my children's genetic/biological mothers and wonder what that day is like for them. I think about sweet friends who long to be mothers or who have lost children this year. I think about all the moms in my family and in my circle of friends and I am grateful for each one of them. Being a mom is the most difficult thing I have ever done, and I continually pray that my children will grow up saying that I loved them, that I loved their father, and most importantly, that I loved Jesus. There is nothing I want for my kids more than for them to have a relationship with Christ and to become like Him. It is such a blessing to see that happening already- today I was frustrated because the kids were playing in the kitchen and I was trying to get some things done and I spoke to Josiah, but it was not a very nice tone of voice. I was not concerned about their heart, I just wanted them out of the kitchen! Josiah approached me and very sweetly said "mommy, can you try next time to use kind words?" OUCH- but true. I apologized and asked for his forgiveness. He forgave me and said "I know it is hard to remember"- that made me laugh!
So Happy Mother's Day to all the moms and moms in waiting!
Monday, April 27, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Here are the two posts that have moved me most this week.
And I join Tom in praying this morning, "Come, Lord Jesus!"
Jesus said, "I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you." John 14:18
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
Our case went to court today and all parties(the judge and MOWA) seemed to approve of the adoption
His aunt did not bring her identification with her, and the judge could not rule without her having it. She was instructed to come back on monday with her id and the judge would make a final ruling.
We are bummed, but hopeful and thankful that we don't have to wait for a brand new court date to be scheduled.
Thanks to all of you who are praying for us- we appreciate it so much!
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
So, pray for tomorrow, that the judge would rule in favor of our adoption, that our little boy's aunt would have a safe trip to Addis and sign the appropriate documents and that Brandy and I would be able to breathe/sleep in between now and when we hear something tomorrow. Praying for good news and a travel date in a few weeks.
One fun thing from today is that we got our monthly update and got a new picture of our little guy wearing an outfit that Josiah used to wear and that we sent over with some folks a few weeks ago. Can't wait to see him in person!
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Tonight I am researching different places to stay- we know we want to stay in a guest house, but there are so many choices! I would like to have our own bathroom, but other than that, I don't have any major preferences.
The ones I have looked at are-
New Flower Guest House
Oziopia Guest House
Addiskidan Baptist House
Ayat Guest House
Sidama Guest Lodge
Z Guest House
Weygoss Guest House
I am sure there are others- anyone have any experience or recommendations?
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
We got word today that we do have a court date set, which was a little early but not unheard of to hear something three weeks after our referral. Then they told us the date. Average time to wait once court date is set is anywhere from 7 to 12 weeks, but not for the Butlers. Our court date is set for a week from tomorrow, April 22nd!!!!!! We're in shock. There's always the possibility that we won't pass court and will have to wait for another date, but if we do pass, we'll be traveling to pick the little guy up sometime in the month of May.
We're stunned, but excited. Please join us in praying for those involved in the decision making process there, for his aunt who will have to be at the hearing on the 22nd to sign the needed papers, and for our little guy to get to come home very soon. Grateful for all of your prayers and support to this point. We'll update you next week when we hear something.
Monday, April 13, 2009
I followed that up with reading the first chapter of the short book of Haggai and came across this. "Then the word of the Lord came through the prophet Haggai: 'Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?' Now this is what the Lord Almighty says: 'Give careful thought to your ways. You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.'" Haggai was appointed by God to stir the hearts of the Israelites to rebuild the temple, the place where God's glory was to dwell and pointed out their faulty use of resources to build their own homes, fill their own stomachs, and pad their own savings accounts.
The translation for today is this: God's temple is the hearts of His people, His church and as His church, His children, we are commissioned with this work of building His church. Yet we are prone to focusing our time and attention on establishing our own kingdoms known as comfort, ease, pleasure, and independence. What Haggai points out to the Israelites of His day, is becoming more and more clear for me today, that the Church is in desperate need of being built, so what must I sacrifice to build it. Adoption is not a cheap or priceless venture, and I'm not talking financially (although I could). It is choosing to bring another person into our home, to endure all that he will bring with him in the way of rebellion, selfishness, and pride for the sake of introducing Him to Christ and His ways that he might be one more brick in the glory that is God's church. How many more will we adopt? Not sure, but the Lord knows. What I do know is that those who call themselves the church should be on the alert for how we should support the fatherless, either through adopting ourselves or supporting Christ-followers who do so. The fatherless of today are part of the temple God is constructing for His glory and we must not be guilty of padding our lifestyle, feeding our faces, or stuffing our leaking purses while the temple is yet to be built. My takeaways . . .
This is consistent with a few sermons from one of my current heroes of the faith, Francis Chan that I would point you to and challenge you with. Go to http://www.cornerstonesimi.com/special/media_player.html and listen to Chan's messages from March 8th and 15th to be challenged along with me in this area. Well worth your time. And if you haven't read "Crazy Love" by him, you need to. http://www.crazylovebook.com/
Praying you are challenged with me today.
Brandy and I both said at one point during the day, that as much fun as this was, we both felt a very real sense in which this wasn't the whole family and we missed the chance to share this experience with our little boy. We can't wait to introduce him to Texas bluebonnets among so many other things. It is a sweet sorrow!
Sunday, April 5, 2009
Afterwards, I told Josiah that I loved watching him score all of those goals, but that my favorite part of the game was when he had the opportunity to score again and instead, stepped back and let one of the little girls on the team take the shot (she missed).
We're in negotiations with Gatorade and Nike this week . . .
Here are the videos from the last verses they've memorized. This week, we'll be working on Psalm 62:5-8 with Josiah and Psalm 119:105 with Selah. Join us if you'd like.
Psalm 62:5-8 "Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; He is my mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in Him at all times, O people; pour our your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge."
Psalm 119:105 "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path."
Here's the videos from the last few verses.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Nevertheless, I look forward to the day when my son says, "Is He the One?" referring to Jesus, and I'll be able to tell him his adoption story and say, "Son, here is what I have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, the good news is preached to the poor, and orphans are given homes. He is the One. Follow Him." We found out last night that our son's name means, "My messenger." I pray now that his life will testify to these great truths and that the gospel message will go forth proudly from his lips.
The other layer of this story that's worth noting is the discouragement of JTB as he sat in prison. We have some really close friends, the Fournets (http://fournetfamily.blogspot.com/) who are "imprisoned" right now by a longer than expected wait to bring their kiddos home and I'm sure there are many who I don't know who are discouraged by the same thing. I've been so encouraged by Beau and Natalie's determination to reflect often on what they have "seen and heard" as followers of Christ even in the midst of this heartache. The truth that "He is the One" is the greatest comfort in times of trouble, the greatest purpose in life, and the greatest hope for the future.
Join us in praying for the Fournets and reflect often on what you have seen God do in your life and in the lives of others.
Monday, March 23, 2009
We spent the rest of the afternoon walking around, celebrating with anyone who was close to us, calling family and friends, thinking of baby names, and enjoying a great meal at our favorite Ethiopian restaurant, Queen of Sheba, with our friends the Tuckers. They received their referral a month and a half ago, and as we compared notes, we discovered that our boys were both from the same area, both placed in the same orphanage in that area, and both traveled from that orphanage to Gladney's foster home on the same day!!!! Crazy!!! By the time all is said and done, these two little guys will have traveled all the way from their little area in southern Ethiopia to Richardson, TX together . . . within blocks of each other. Mind-blowing!!!! We hope their journeys home won't be too far apart in time.
Monday, March 16, 2009
We were able to celebrate a little over the weekend with Mawmaw and Pawpaw (my parents) and made a trip to The Magic Time Machine on Saturday night for Selah's birthday dinner. She dressed up in full blown princess garb for the occasion and was fascinated by all of the characters, although her exposure to Heath Ledger's Joker provided great motivation to shorten our visit. Brandy reminded me that the last time we went to the Magic Time Machine (in San Antonio) was the night I proposed to her (no, it was not a part of the proposal plan). Here's a few more pictures of our time there.
Selah and Snow White
Selah, Daddy, and Cinderella
Riding in the Space Ship
A Spin on the Carousel
We wrapped up the day by giving Selah her brand new bike and taking a few family laps around the park across the street. It was a perfect day today. We are a blessed family to have such a sweet girl be a part of it. Happy birthday, Princess!
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Saturday, March 14, 2009
Celebrating a Stars goal
After "catching" the hockey puck
Showing the "Official Game Puck" stamp of the Dallas Stars
Monday, March 9, 2009
If you want to track along with us, Selah is working on Psalm 1:6 this week and the rest of us are working through Romans 11:34-36.
Getting ready for the game
Taking a breather
Cheering the team on!
Here's a short video of the first goal of the season for the Orange Crush! Ignore the father yelling at his son to get the ball. I don't know who that guy is . . .
In the meantime, life continues to be a fun adventure and it's always good to share it here, so you'll be hearing more from us in the days to come.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
I miss you while you are in Africa and I hope you be here soon. I miss you and I can't wait until you get home. This is from Josiah. I hope that your skin is brown like usually African people are. I'll share my toys and animals whenever you want some when you get home. I have a sister named Selah that is very sweet and beautiful and that's who will be your sister when you get home. We will have another sister after we get you and you can play with all of us. I hope I get to play with you and I am excited that you get to sleep in my room. I hope you have black hair and I hope you like sports and I hope you like army, pirates, blocks and a king castle and I can't wait that you get to sleep in my room and I hope you are excited. We will see you when you get home. And we have all sorts of things. And I am praying for you and people in Africa like your friends and I hope you like me. And I would like to say other things to you but I have to get to picking up my room. That's all I can say.
I love you too. I love my bubba and I hug him and I want to play a game with you. And I love you and hug you when you come to our house and I love you because I like you, I hope I walk with you and hold your hand and we love him and mommy does because we like you. I hope you like baseball and barbies. I hope you look like me. I hope you get up and walk. I hope your name is baby Grayson. I will love you when I see you for the first time. I can't wait to tell you about the man on the roof. I am praying for you and your birthmother and your forever mommy. I hope I get princess stuff for Christmas and you get batman stuff. I love you.
*We have explained to Selah over and over again that we are adopting a boy this time but she is convinced that it will be a girl, so I tried to correct her with her letter to her "sister", but she insisted. "Baby Grayson" is our nephew and she thinks he should share his name! The man on the roof is a neighbor who fell off his roof and broke his leg and she is a little obssessed with it- and prays for him at each meal. I hope she won't be too disappointed that he will not have blonde hair and blue eyes!!