Wednesday, April 29, 2015

A Super Special Weekend!

This past weekend was a very special weekend. It began on Friday morning with Hope and me baking Andrew some goodies to take to his school on Monday to celebrate his birthday with his classmates. As you can see, Hope (and I) had a blast!

When we were finished baking, I joined Andrew at his school for "Mother's Day Tea". Andrew had made me some very special gifts and performed for me in a show. He did great! Then, he served me ice cream, brownies, and a drink.

Afterwards, we hopped in the car and went to Grandma's house to see Aunt Jen, Aunt Michele, and Carolyn--who had come to visit for a short time. While on the drive to Grandma's house, we received notification that all our adoption paperwork had passed inspection and was on its way to China.

The look of happy relief:

Aunt Michele and Carolyn:


Aunt Jen and Andrew:

Sisters...finally getting together:

Getting closer:

Feeling somethin' ain't quite right:

Still not right:

Aww. Better!
(Thanks for the block to stand on, Jen!)

The next day we went to a Science Museum to begin celebrating Andrew's birthday. (We purchased a year-membership so we could enhance the children's homeschooling experience.)

Funny daddy!

Lego time!

These two figured out a very hard puzzle!

The next day was Andrew's birthday. Cherish, Hope, and daddy decorated the house by hanging streamers and paper construction trucks from the ceiling. At the same time, Andrew and I made a "dirt cake" (brownies with chocolate icing) together. His construction truck theme came together:

 And, he ended the evening with a shower + some of his construction costume:
Cute kid!

Happy Big 5, Buddy!

What a FABULOUS weekend with our loved ones!!!!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015


Our paperwork was logged into China's files today! Now we await a document (Letter of Acceptance) that will determine the month we travel. Progress! One step at a time! Woo-Hoo!!

Friday, April 24, 2015


We are Dossier to China!! Our adoption paperwork is flying over to China right now!!! Woo-Hoo! We are so thankful that this part of the journey is behind us! Thank You, LORD!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Picture update

I know I said I planned to accept a challenge to take one picture a day and post the picture, but life has been too busy to post. So, I'll catch us up a bit since I have time to sit still for a while.

Derek and I celebrated our 16th anniversary, and Derek bought me these beautiful roses:


Cherish went back to the dentist to have the splint removed from her broken teeth, but the dentist sent her home with it still attached. Her teeth were still too loose to have the splint removed. We were told to come back on the tenth day to have the splint removed--as the tenth day is the longest the splint is allowed to be attached.

The teeth were still too loose, but the splint had to come off. Cherish was told not to jump, dance, skip, run...for at least a month. She was kept on a soft food diet for another month as well. The "teeth implementation" is taking, but slowly. She continues to drink through a straw on the side of her mouth, and she cannot bite into anything. All food is place into her mouth through the side of her mouth--bypassing the front teeth.

After the splint came off, the dentist filed of the jagged edges to make the teeth not look so chipped.

All in all, she has been a trooper about the whole situation! She does not complain!


Andrew began climbing trees. Climbing is his new favorite thing to do. (He stopped riding his bike to climb--that's why he has a helmet on.)


Our friend, Mandy sent us a sweet blanket for Daniel. We met Mandy and her husband in China while she and her husband were adopting their daughter and we were adopting Andrew. What a precious family they have!


Uncle Pedro and Aunt Jen brought us a bed for Andrew and Daniel, as well as a dresser for Daniel! What gifts!

Andrew was previously sleeping on a full-sized bed that we used for guests. Derek decided to take the lower bed apart on the girls' bunk bed to make it into a full sized bed. Then, he put Andrew's mattress into the lower bunk.

Here he is teaching Andrew about nuts and bolts:

Andrew and Daniel's new bunk bed:

Daniel's new dresser:

And now, instead of sleeping in their own beds, the girls prefer to sleep together. It's WONDERFUL for Hope's bonding time!

Thank you, Uncle Pedro and Aunt Jen!!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Going out on a limb

So, I've never done this before. I've never done any kind of fundraising. Nor have Derek or I ever asked for donations.... Derek feels God has blessed him with the ability to work, and he has kept a job that has enabled him to accept second and third shift positions on top of his first shift position. With each adoption, God has blessed him with the work and finances needed.

But, there has been an added challenge this time. There will be the cost of an international adoption AND a vehicle to fit four children. Derek is known to work seven days a week to provide for us and to care for orphans.

So, when Derek went to work again yesterday after church, and the children were sad to see him leave yet again, the children and I decided to put our energies into making a video. From that decision came this:

We made the video and I set up the account. I wasn't sure how Derek would respond, but he is getting older, and the hours are really wearing on him.

When he came home from work last night at 11:35 p.m., I showed him what we had created. I saw a wave of relief come over his body.

He was able to rest well and was up again at 5:30 a.m. for work. God bless his diligent heart and willingness to do whatever is necessary to make an orphan a son!

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Caught this guy...

...being so helpful!

I had asked Andrew to clean the counter, but not only did he clean the bathroom counter and sink, he swept and washed the floor. What a sweet boy!!!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Mad Hatter's Tea Party

We love to go to the library; we go once or twice a week. While at the library today, we found out the staff was holding a "Mad Hatter's Tea Party" for its guests. We stayed and enjoyed getting to know the staff better.

The party included making a party hat, playing games, eating cake, and having tea and apple juice. The children thoroughly enjoyed their time (and their peppermint tea)! What a blast!