Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Precious Heart

There are times in our lives as parents that we are really proud of our children. I have just experienced three days of such feelings.

It all started on Friday morning. I went into Cherish’s room to check on her, and she had just finished making her bed. I praised her for making the bed so well. Immediately her countenance dropped. She said, “Mom, I have done something wrong, and I need to tell you. I did something you told me not to do. I stood up on the bed and kept shaking my blanket to get it flat. I’m sorry I didn’t obey you. Will you please forgive me?” I told her I forgave her, and then I explained why we have a “no standing or jumping on beds” rule (safety). I told her I’d rather her have wrinkles in her blankets if that’s the best she can do while obeying.

I was SO PROUD of her! Her heart is so sensitive. (It is not a new thing for her to confess a wrong that I would never otherwise have found out.) God bless that dear child!

About two hours later, she was in a very hard situation, and she shone—because of her willingness to be obedient. Cherish and Andrew had been asked to be in a commercial, and they were just going to be “one of the crowd”. This terrified Cherish. Derek and I had asked her to do the commercial as a way to honor us. (The commercial is to promote someone/something Derek and I believe in.)

So, she and Andrew went to the filming to be “lost in the crowd”. However, due to a change in circumstances, Cherish was asked to act with the main character of the commercial. When the camera man asked her to take the role, she looked at me terrified but did what the man asked her to do.  Though Cherish is naturally very shy when it comes to people, situations, places, etc. that she doesn’t know, she acted out of obedience and honor for those in authority. She completed the requests and was praised by several people.

She had graciously done what was asked. She told me later she didn’t want to do it at all and was so scared. That’s what makes me even more proud of her! Obedience—even when it’s scary. Honoring parents and those in authority—even when it doesn’t make sense. God bless that dear child!

Then, later that night, I found out that Cherish had won a coloring contest. AND, that she had won $100! $100! I was shocked! I ran to tell Cherish, and she acted like it was no big deal (humble). I kept restating how much it really was a big deal, because she had cared about our adoption agency and wanted to celebrate their 20th anniversary with them. She had colored the best she could for the contest and had won! I explained that $100 is a lot of money and she could buy a lot of things, etc., and she said, “Ok. I’ll share it with you.”

The point being, when she gets money, she shares it. She doesn’t hoard. Like when she had saved up a sizeable amount of money for our trip to China (her spending money), and she told Derek and me that she wanted to give it all to us to help with “getting Andrew and Hope”. Of course we don’t take her money, but she was serious. In her mind, when she offers it, it’s as good as done. Giving. Humble. God bless that dear child!

Then, Saturday came. She had her ballet and tap dress rehearsal and recital. I watched her intently (obviously). I noticed that she was more interested in the group being honored as a whole than standing out as knowing parts that the other girls (at various times) had forgotten. She kept her eyes on the other girls. She was much more interested in them all looking like they were together, even if it meant she forwent a split-second step. The group upheld. No individualized attention. That’s what she cared about. God bless that dear child for caring about others more that herself!

And, lastly, today. A little while back I had told Cherish about Locks of Love and about children who are unable to grow hair for various reasons. She couldn’t let it go. She wanted to give her hair away. I wanted her to wait and really think about it, because I didn’t want her to regret her decision—since her goal for the last two years had been to grow her hair “down to her butt”. Well, she remained focused. “Mom, I really want to make someone smile. I want to give my hair to someone who needs it!”

Initially I thought I had to put Cherish’s hair up in a bun for her dance recital, so I asked her to wait until after the dance recital to cut her hair. So, what happened? This morning before we left for the church service, she asked me to cut her hair. I told her I didn’t have time, but that today I would cut it.

God bless that dear child for caring so much about others!

Giving. Caring. Humble. Obedient. Honoring. What a precious child!

Tap dancers:

Ballet dancers:

Hair washed and ready to cut:

The gift: over 11" of hair.
She can't wait to mail it in tomorrow and bless another child.
What. a. girl!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Summer Planned

We've planned it.
We're keeping the plans.

We're having a blast!
Our weeks are full.
Our days are enjoyable.
We are making memories!

Here's the plan:
It includes all the fun stuff like ballet, tap, and swim lessons, music classes, story and craft times, beach and pool times, movies and play dates, PowerUp Clubs, and so much more.
On the chart, I have also written Cherish's goals for the summer. Here are the goals she has chosen for herself:
1. Learn how to tie shoes. (She completed this goal the first day she tried, and I had to buy shoelaces, because none of her shoes required ties!)
2. Be able to read My First Read and Learn Bible by myself.
3. Be able to read all the "Step Into Reading" Pre-Level 1 books by myself.
4. Learn to ride a bike without training wheels.
5. Write a family story book with mom (photo book).
6. Learn to braid hair.
7. Find all 50 Commemorative State Quarters.

The children also joined the summer reading program at our public library, and as of today--22 days into the program--Cherish has 51 books logged and Andrew has 18 books logged. They. love. books! (And, by the way, I log the books I supervise. Cherish has "read" a lot more books to her brother.)

Cherish reading to Andrew in their "club house":

Sprinkler-and-ice-pop-time usually always follows bike-riding-time:



(Because ya gotta try to be like Bob Ross!)


And, yes, crash-time:

We are having so much fun together!
I can hardly wait to put that photo book of memories together!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day, Derek!

Big guy was quite surprised and pleased. The framed picture will be headed to his office tomorrow to hang on one of his walls.

The other picture is of Derek and Andrew together and the frame says: "Daddy & Me". Cherish and I have a picture together in a frame that says: "Mom & Me", so it is sweet that both pictures are sitting side by side on our piano.

We are SO BLESSED to be parents
to these two precious children!

I also wanted to add a big "Thank You" to Derek's dad and my dad who sacrificed so much for us growing up. We have a glimpse of what they sacrificed, but we will never know the full picture while on this earth. We are both blessed to have dads that love us!

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to some really awesome dads!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Cherish's New Ride

Cherish had been very patiently waiting for a new bike. She had outgrown her other bike over the winter, but she never asked for another bike. Thus, she has been riding her scooter everywhere. (She bought the scooter at a yard sale with her own money.)

She has been preciously sweet and patient! So, on her ½ birthday, she got a bike! She was so excited!
Here she is saying she's 5½.
The good thing is that one of her goals for the summer is to learn to ride a bike without training wheels. So, I guess it's good she has a new "ride" to reach her goal!

Monday, June 11, 2012

God of Wonders

Due to a lack of Internet connection for part of last week, this post is a little late. However, now that I am writing this morning, I realize it's actually right on time. Why? Because I get to add another miracle that our miracle-working God has performed.

In case you are just joining our blog or have forgotten, I was very sick a couple of months ago and I had posted about it. (You can click HERE to read about the liver disease I had developed on our trip to pick up Andrew.)

I was healed on Palm Sunday by our gracious Saviour and was overwhelmed by His love and care for me—a nobody. (Missed that post? Click HERE.)

Well, I wasn’t planning on going back in to the center for abdominal disease—due to knowing all my symptoms had completely disappeared.
With no medication.
With no intervention.
Just gone!

Well, the center for disease would not hear of it. They required that I come back in, so I went back and submitted to some testing. I received a phone call last week from the center stating my tests all came back normal.
Yep, normal.
The doctor was confused.
Not me.
Healed I tell ya!
By my Saviour, Jesus.

Goodbye liver disease.
So long all the terrible symptoms that accompany liver disease.
Healed in Jesus’ name!

Now, the other fantastic part: I was informed that Alea received her liver transplant yesterday. Praise the LORD! There are miracles surrounding the situation that I am unable to write, but trust me when I say: God worked wonders! Now we need to pray!

Please pray for the family that lost their 2-year-old child to a brain injury and graciously donated the liver to save Alea’s life. Please pray for Alea, that her body would not reject the liver. God’s hand is certainly on this precious little girl!

God is the Helper and Defender of the fatherless (Psalm 10:14-18), and He is love (I John 4:8).

What an AMAZING God!

In addition: I was notified this morning by the director of the center that is looking after Alea that all the funds needed for Alea have been reached—due to the liver being donated and the hospital costs being a lot less than expected!

THANK YOU to each one who prayed and/or gave! THANK YOU IMMENSELY! Jesus said, “[I]f anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones…he will certainly not lose his reward.” Matt. 10:42

You can find continuing updates on Alea HERE.

Glory to God!
The God of Wonders!

Sunday, June 3, 2012


(His kitchen is so messy he needs to wear three aprons!)
(the bears)
(for treasures)

Hello, Summer!