Friday, May 28, 2010

Cute Kid Quips

(After some frank talk about human anatomy, where babies come from, and the specific Daddies and Mommies who contributed sperm and eggs to make all the kids in our family)
Andrew: So all people come from a daddy sperm and a mommy egg?
Me: That's right.
Andrew: All the people in the whole world?
Me: Every one.
Andrew: (slyly) What about Jesus?

(After reading a bug-alphabet book)
Me: (snuggling and tickling) Will you be my little brown bug?
Jadon: Yes, my little pink mommy!

(After checking the Internet to determine which are faster: sharks or dolphins, tigers or lions, etc.)
Andrew: Which is faster: a lion or a cheetah?
Me: Oh, I know that. A cheetah is the fastest land animal. Nothing goes faster than a cheetah on land.
Andrew: Except the gingerbread man!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Handicap of Haste


It's a word you hear a lot. For those involved with international adoption, this word has its own unique connotation. Still, the word is one we all have to face at one time or another. And, it seems to me, very few do it well.

During "the wait" for our referral, I came across an old hymn by Bradford Torrey, titled "Not So In Haste, My Heart." I've pulled it out again. You see, our family is still waiting for some post-adoption paperwork from the government. Admittedly, I'm finding it hard to wait. No, more than that...I find myself pulled down by this wait. I need a reminder of the how to wait well:

Not so in haste my heart!
Have faith in God, and wait;
Although He linger long,
He never comes too late.

He never cometh late;
He knoweth what is best;
Vex not thyself in vain;
Until He cometh, rest.

Until He cometh, rest,
Nor grudge the hours that roll;
The feet that wait for God
Are soonest at the goal.

Are soonest at the goal
That is not gained with speed;
Then hold thee still, my heart,
For I shall wait His lead.

So the next time that I realize I am "vexing" myself over this issue, I am going to purposefully pursue another goal, one that cannot be "gained with speed." Intentional slowness, quietness, rest, faith...this is my self-prescription for this waiting heart, for overcoming my handicap of haste.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Education (Not Necessarily the Conventional Methods)

"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts.
Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts.
Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me...
Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”
--Shel Silverstein

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


A pretentious, showy life is an empty life; a plain and simple life is a full life. Proverbs 13:7

What is simplicity?

Is it…

-Purposefully reducing the number of bills, debt, and accompanying concerns in your life?
-Doing very small things that you might easily have others do for you, like making your own brown sugar? (Just learned this and couldn’t resist sharing!)
-Discovering how to be content without position and power?
-Having a goal, knowing how to get there, and being singularly focused on achieving that goal?
-Becoming more aware of the needs of others and sacrificing in order to be able to give generously?
-Intentionally de-cluttering, whether materially or internally?
-Embracing opportunities to pay attention to that which you truly care about

Both Mike and I have agreed that life has gotten simpler for us in many ways, but we have struggled to pinpoint exactly how this has been worked out in our lives. I think each of the reasons listed above has contributed to this sense of simplicity. I certainly do not mean to suggest that we have arrived! Still, I am thankful for the ways in which our lives have (and, hopefully, will continue to) become fuller by becoming simpler.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Hair: Learning and Exploring

Yes, dealing with the boys' hair has certainly been a learning process. I had read lots and lots before they arrived and tried to follow all the directions with them, but a lot needs to be figured out through personal experience. During the winter, both boys' hair got quite dry despite my best efforts. We needed to try some new products in order to restore appropriate moisture levels. Things seem to be improving significantly at this point. The biggest lesson I've learned is that maintaining their hair is a lot of work!

Both boys do not particularly enjoy getting their hair cut, preferring to have it grown out a bit. However, this does require more care. I needed some more ideas. After doing a bit of research, I stumbled upon a hair-twisting system called Nudred and decided to give it a try. I ordered it online, and it was at our house within a week. After a bit of practicing, I now have the technique figured out and can have some sweet twists in the boys' hair in just a few minutes. Jadon's been modeling this style for several days now, and we are loving it! What do you think?

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

Mother's Day used to be one of the hardest days of the year for me. It made me feel incompetent, cheated, lonely, and terribly sad. Admittedly, things are different now. Besides my own terrific mother and wonderful mother-in-law, I now have four very unique reasons to be thankful on this Mother's Day...

...yet the day still often feels a bit haunted to me. Understanding the pain of others causes me to want to temper my own celebration somehow. I had the opportunity to hug another woman today who cried because this day is what it is. I am thankful I had the chance to embrace her moment of pain, to acknowledge her hurt, to join in her mourning. I may not feel lonely and cheated anymore, but I am compelled to be ever-sensitive to those who might.

The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18 NIV

Friday, May 7, 2010

Family Night

Thanks, Auntie Lee and Granny for Jadon's great birthday present! For family night tonight, we used our gift card for Cosmic Adventures and spent the evening climbing, running, jumping, sliding, crawling, and laughing like crazy!

(And, if you're wondering, "bedtime" lasted about two minutes!)

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Work and Play

Abby loves to scrub the bathroom! ...and she does a good job, too!

Helping Dad remove the old carpet from Abby's room over the weekend was an adventure. Ethan, especially, loves to dig in to this kind of work. And don't let his smaller stature fool you -- this kid is STRONG!

Leaving the grocery store yesterday, Abby and Jadon were each given a balloon. Walking across the parking lot to the van, Jadon lost his. The internal struggle was written all over his little body: to run through the parking lot after my prize or to be safe, listen to Mom, and go to the van. Hooray for little boys who make hard choices! Though obviously distraught, he chose to make his way safely over to the van, where he promptly collapsed into a sobbing heap! An empathetic fellow shopper even chased down the balloon and presented it to Jadon. So, in the end, we had a happy Mommy and a happy boy! Above, you can see some of the balloon fun.

And then, about 15 minutes after arriving home, there was popped balloon misery.

Luckily, big sister was up for sharing, and the remaining balloon, after a little creative upgrading, continued to be enjoyed throughout the day.

Sunday, May 2, 2010


Before church today, we enjoyed a stroll through the amazing displays of tulips in Ottawa. It is estimated that the park in which we walked had approximately 300,000 tulips blooming! According to the Canadian Tulip Festival website, "now in its 58th year, [the Canadian Tulip Festival] preserves the local heritage of Canada's role in freeing the Dutch people during World War II and the gift in perpetuity of the tulip to the City of Ottawa for providing a safe harbour for the Dutch royal family at that time."

"Attention, all! See the marvels of God! He plants flowers and trees all over the earth, Bans war from pole to pole, breaks all the weapons across his knee. Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God" (Psalm 46, MSG)