Tuesday, April 29, 2008

What a difference a day makes

So today things seemed to try to work against us... well me.  

First of all have you ever had a co worker that just completely rubs you the wrong way?  I tell you what, I pray daily that I will be able to use the full power of God's grace to get me through the day when I have to work with her.  Well, today was one of those days.  Started first thing at 8am, and just went down hill.

Then I got an email from USCIS, they are the Home Land Security approval people.  They need more information from us for approve our application to adopt.  Well, one piece of it I have already told them I cannot get, we tried and our local court system refused to give it to us.  So, I am not sure what to do with it.  We already provided one piece of information and now we have to also get an addendum to the HS that we supplied.  ARGH!  One more set back.  

There are times when the paper work and other pieces just drag me down and seem like they are SO huge.  These are the times when I truly have to look at our N and remember how completely worth it all is!

So say a little prayer that this will all get done smoothly and this isn't the piece that sets us too far behind.  I am SO ready to go get my E!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Amazing weekend

What a weekend.  Do you ever just get overwhelmed with the blessings of God that you just don't know what to do with your self?
I am such a sap though, so the things that make me overwhelmed are probably just boring old day to day for others.
Saturday we had glorious weather.  It was sunny and breezy and in the high 70's.  We got some dirt and some plants for our garden and got to plantin'.  Z, drove D and I to the local garden store in his truck.  It's still a little surreal to be riding in a vehicle while my son drives.   Then Z and N helped me clean out all the mess from last year.  N, my little guy that loves to play in dirt and comes homes with at least 10 rocks from the playground daily, got upset because I got dirt on his hand.  Who knew?

It was just a beautiful day to spend with my family enjoying the beauty of God's creation.

D and I had our parents over for a cook out and we were able to eat on the deck.  It's too early for many bugs, so again... perfect weather and fun.

I will tell you that I have a crazy love for music.  I can't play any instruments, not enough coordination, but music is such a time of worship for me.  We had a guest pianist who played a hymn and to be honest I couldn't remember the name of it, but the man didn't use any sheet music and just played as if he were the only one in the room.  What an amazing gift.  
The sermon was perfect and then Sunday school was an answered prayer.  

I felt like I was living in some weird surreal life... only so much better.

THEN!  We went bowling with our sunday school class... I bowled a 125!!!  ok so I know that's not all that great, but for a chick that normally needs bumpers I was so stoked.  Who knew I could get the silly ball to go where I wanted it to?!  yeah!  And N loved bowling.  He's such a boy when it comes to sports.  He would carry that heavy ball to the end of the lane and just chuck it.  I wish I could have recorded it.  So funny.  And he even beat S on the first game!  She wasn't totally thrilled with that one.  ;o)

These are the times when I DO feel that life is better than good.  When I am reminded of the blessings that God gives us... friends, family, sunshine, warm weather, and a church home that feels like home.  The only thing missing was out little E... I so pictured him in the garden with us, helping to hold the bag while mommy shovels leaves, pushing the 2 little ones on the swing set, or showing them how to plant tomatoes and squash.  And trying to explain that these little green things would produce food. ;o)  

Life IS better than Good.  I love when God reminds me!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Adopting again..

So what made us decide to adopt again?

Well to tell the truth we knew we were going to adopt again while we were in Ethiopia to get N. We just were so blown away by the children, the need and the will of God.    When we were fist in process for N,  I truly wanted to bring home 2 children at the same time, but we were open to 1 or 2 under the age of 3 yrs.  And as God would have it he gave us one child.  He is one smart God!!!

We had some struggles with bringing him home and adjusting to having a little person in the house again.  God knew we would need time to adjust with one before we were going to move along with number 2.  I am so glad he's got more wisdom than me!

After we got home I could not wait to start the process again.  But of course there are wait times before starting, and they are also for good reason.  I think having been over there and seeing what we saw, I just wanted to do SOMEthing...ANYthing with all the emotions I had flying around.  And I felt that I wanted to get started ASAP.  

We began this process again in September of 2007.  We actually started with 2 specific children in mind, and started in earnest.  Well, again God had other plans.  This was pretty devastating to me... I was truly in love with them.  And still pray for them daily.  D and I both know that God wanted us to start the adoption process again, but that the child we were to bring home ... was again just 1.  Not 2.  I guess I am a slow learner.  

We have all our paperwork in and our fingerprints done.  Now we wait for the referral paperwork so that we can officially claim our little E.  And then we wait... and wait... and wait ... for a court date to have him officially be ours.

Then we travel.

I will keep you posted.

Living with HIV...

My friend Erin has asked those that read her blog to share the truth about HIV with other's and so I am. 
Here is what she shared on her blog recently regarding HIV.  I very much believe in and share her views.  Please take a moment and educate yourselves, and other's about this disease that still takes so many lives in other countries... but it doesn't have to be that way any more.

Ok, so I can't make it post here but this is the link to her post.  You can also find pictures of her children.  Truly amazing.

Thank you for reading ....

Thank you Erin for your words and your inspiration.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


So, this week has been kinda strange at daycare... actually the last couple of weeks have been. We have been phone calls about N for weird things.  Lately he has decided that he doesn't like to take naps.  Well, he's almost 4yrs old and just... done with them.  Well, that's an awful long time for a guy with his imagination to have to lay still. 
We have tried to have several conversations with the directors of the daycare regarding this issue.   I think we have finally made headway.  It's been a bit frustrating though.
Yesterday I get a call that N has done something and he wouldn't tell them why.  Ok so what 3 yr old is going to tell you why they did something?  I know my N won't.  I said just tell him you both know what he did, and if he wants to tell you why that's great, but if not then you explain it's unacceptable.   How hard is that?!
As it turns out a kid he wanted to have play with him was on the other side of the room, N was mad that he wouldn't come play with him, so he did what any mad 3 yr old would... he went over and bopped the kid.  
ok, nope not acceptable behavior... but I get it.  I have often considered bopping people that make me mad as well, however at my much more mature age I refrain and pray instead.  We will work on that with N.
We are considering moving him to a Montessori school that is much closer to home...like walking distance and then when he starts Kindergarten it will still only be across the street. And then Little E will not be far either.  

Monday, April 21, 2008


So the person who said parenting ain't easy, wasn't lying.   hhmmm speaking of lying, N has learned this nasty little habit.  Where do we learn how to lie?  
Lately N, has decided that other things "make him do things".  The other night he pee peed in bed and very matter of factly told me that mice "sneaked" into his bed and peed on him.  Who knew mice were so conniving?  sneaky little boogers.
Or his "friends" do things or tell him things.  Not like he's hearing voices or anything like that, but more like "my friends told me to do it".  
So how do you get a 3 yr old to understand what lying is, and why it's bad?  I have some awesome friends that have shared some great thoughts.  The most helpful is knowing that he's a pretty normal kid.  Well, I happen to think he's pretty spectacular... but with normal behaviors.  
He's my little man that loves his momma, who tells me a 1000 times a day "I love you".  Who even after a long day, and momma fussing at him for lying, climbs up into my lap and says "mommy you are my best friend".
I have been so completely blessed by my kids... my 18 yr old who is learning to become an adult, my 14 yr old trying to find her space in the world, and my 3 yr old learning what being loved forever means... there are times I almost can't contain my praise to God for blessing me.
Is it a wonder I want more?  

Little E...mommy's comin. 

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Just a few more for fun

The water was a little chilly....

Some reasons my life IS better than good...

Today we spent some time in Nags head with family for my aunt's birthday.  It was a beautiful day with family, with my kids and in the glorious weather.... what more could you ask?

Friday, April 18, 2008

The orphan...

Do you ever just get overwhelmed with the pain of life? 
My blog is called "Better than Good"  I called it that because of a book I read by Zig Ziglar... I truly feel my life is better than good.  God has been amazing to our family and to me in particular. His grace has been something that has me in awe daily.  Yet sometimes that feeling of blessing is mingled with a feeling of sadness.

There are days when I think about the children that are living as orphans either in and orphanage or on the streets.  The thought that there is a child that has to go to sleep without a mommy or daddy there to read a book, say prayers and kiss them good night.  And repeat 5 times "I love you, sleepy good, see you in the morning" before they can close the door.

I read about the children that had to watch their parents get sick, children as young as age 4 yrs that become caregivers.  I cannot fathom the pain God must feel at seeing this depth of despair in his children.  I have looked into the eyes of children on the street asking for help.  I have seen mother's with nothing but the clothes and the baby on their backs, desperate for something to change... or eyes vacant because they have given up hope. 

We are here on this earth to make a difference.  But how?  Not everyone is called to adopt... but we are ALL as Christians called to help the widows and the lonely and the naked and the poor and the orphaned.  What can we do?  What can I do?

There are days that I feel so overwhelmed with the enormity of it all.  Then I remember I don't have to do it alone.  We are a body all parts with a purpose.  We can all do one thing.  

The other night I went to a board at my church that leads the mission commission.  I spoke about a place that has found a way into my heart without having ever seen it.  I asked for their help...and I realized as I asked that I SO wanted them to hear me, to hear my plea to know that this was bigger than we are... it's not about what I want or need, but doing what we can to be like Christ... to show up and step out and change lives.    I believe we will make a difference together.

May God grant us all a heart that loves like every person we meet is a child of the most high God.

Meeting N...

In a previous post I was talking about seeing N's picture for the first time.  And today I was reading a forum I belong to that was reminiscing about the day we "heard" the news!!

I remember most of it so vividly... one of the big things I remember is not being by my phone when it rang, and then not being able to reach Lindsay until either the next day or later actually ... I remember turning to my forum friends for help, them all rallying around me.  It's such an amazing thing to belong to a group of people that are so completely different but have such a strong bond.  Many of them would cringe opening...and probably flame me, but I truly feel it's like that in our body of Christ.  We can be so completely different, yet have a bond so strong.

But I digress. 

We received our referral mid September, but then had to wait to travel until December.  What a wait!  It was all so very surreal.  We had waited SO long to receive this referral and yet, here it was and I didn't know what to do with the knowledge that this was my son.  It "felt" right, yet, how do you fall in love with someone you don't know?  Who was this scared little face? What made him happy, or sad...what made him giggle or mad,  what did his voice sound like?  So the day came and we were in Addis.  And he was SO cute!  And had dimples!!!  PLUS!  But .... didn't want to have anything to do with us.  Sheesh... what a day.  And then there were the other kids that you just wanted to smooch all over as well.  And all but yours wanted your attention.  

I now believe that it had to do with the fact that he knew that we were there to change his life... he probably didn't know how but he knew it, and didn't want any parts of it.  

On our 3rd visit with him, I think he decided that we were going to be ok, and that he might like us, and we always brought treats, so maybe we weren't half bad.

It was beginning to look like things might be ok......

Thursday, April 17, 2008

New news!

We have finished our dossier and mailed it to AAI!!!

For those of you that don't know what that means...it's our LIFE in paper, that goes to Ethiopia to prove that we are worthy parents.  I totally understand the need to screen parents, it's just a ton of papers and running to do. 

I think it's probably a small tree worth of paper(maybe a ficus), but I think it was easier to do this time around.  We had one new form, but that was fairly easy as well.  D has been in town and been able to help me run around so that's been a huge blessing!

Today we got our appointment for fingerprinting with the FBI ...AND the DVD with our tiny guy on it.   He's bitty!  I so want to see him and get a smile on his face.
So now the dossier goes to AAI to approve, then to Addis to approve.  
The fingerprints go to FBI clearances and then that goes to Ethiopia.  
In the mean time we get paperwork to make sure we are committed to our little man.

Then we wait for a court date in Ethiopia so they can say yes to us.  Then we wait to travel. Best case scenario we will travel in August.  Worst it will be sometime in the fall.  I am not sure I can wait until the fall.  But God knows what he is doing so I will trust in him.

It's been a good day...


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

the rest of the story...

So we had our referral for little N.  And then the wait to travel.  I often ask God why He thinks I need more patience training, or what I began to call 'Wait Training'.  
We were able to travel to get him in December of 2006.  What a month!  What a trip!

There is something about Ethiopia that gets under your skin.  Something about the beauty of the children, the pride and grace of it's people, the pain and joy that mingle in a way that can truly only be witnessed in person.

I will be honest in the fact that I could not wait to leave there, and get home.  I was tired, and over sensitive, and had a 2 yr old that wanted nothing to do with me, and honestly...I wanted a hamburger and an apple.  But ever since I have arrived back here in America I have longed to go back.

To learn more, to live more, to give more, to share more, to grow more.  

Ethiopia, the place that had not been on my radar until I was in High School and buying the Band Aid Cd... and crying at all the sad images.  

Here I am a mother to an amazing child from this same country.  Who knew?  Was God setting into motion this plan... all those 20 yrs ago (oops just shared my age).  Did He know we would be in this place?  Did He know we would be parents to not one but soon to be 2 phenomenal children from this land that began time?  This home to Lucy, the country of poverty and beauty, pride and war... I sure can't wait to get to heaven to hear how God had this all planned.  And I SURE can't wait to see how He continues to unfold His plan.


Monday, April 14, 2008


So why does one adopt?
I think there are so many reasons... ours was lead by God.
We attended a Steven Curtis Chapman concert in 2004, we watched his adoption program and were just completely blown away.  What a witness.
On the way home from that concert our oldest says to us "We should adopt".  D and I looked at each other and and said...yeah... we should. So there the story begins.

We prayed and discussed, and I researched, (cause that's what I do) and decided to move forward.  
We really had to have some real conversations because, shucks, we had teenagers ... they are self sufficient...they sleep all night, they do not need diaper changes and we no longer pay for child care. Do we REALLY want more?  
As it turns out God just kept nudging and prodding, and opening closed doors and windows in some cases.

We were led to Ethiopia.  That too was a leap of faith.  We wanted to make sure that we were making a plan that would be the best for us all.  Would we be able to raise a child to appreciate his heritage, to live in what would essentially be 2 worlds.  We knew we could love this child, the color for us wasn't an issue, but would it someday be for this new child.  Again we went to God.  We truly felt these doors were opening, the steps were leading us to Ethiopia, and to our son.

We sent out dossier in to CHSFS on Sept 13, 2006 and got our referral on Sept 18, 2006.  What a day!  We were so blown away by this whole process.  I don't think we even really considered whether we would decline, not that there was any reason to, but we just "knew".  I can't say I fell in love with his picture immediately, I had no idea who this little person was... but I sure wanted to know him.

I have to go get some things done. 
I will try to finish more later if you are interested.


Just starting ....

So I have entered the blog world.  Who da thunk it?!

I so love to read what others are doing that I thought I would share our journey.  

Let me introduce myself.  I am married to the most amazing man, D, we have been married for almost 15 years. A miracle.

I am a blessed momma to 3 beautiful children, Z who is 18 and getting ready to graduate from high school, S who is 14 going on 21 and getting ready to START high school, N who is our 3 yr old blessing from Ethiopia and we are in process to adopt number 4.  
Gosh if anyone had told me that we would someday have 4 children, and 2 of them would be from Ethiopia I wouldn't have believed you.  God sure has a way of changing our views of life doesn't He?!

I am not sure what I hope to accomplish here, but I hope to share our journey to our next child and a few other fun stuff from life as we know it currently.

Thank you for reading and for sharing.