Friday, February 25, 2011

Great Things Happen

Do you know the song?

Great things happen when God mixes with us
Great things happen when God mixes with us

Great and Beautiful Wonderful Things

Great things happen when Gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooood mixes with us....

That song has been in my head all day... it's what's been happening around me lately and it's so very awesome to see.

He's allowing to be tiny parts of really great things going on around me and I LOVE it!

Rhyan is still praying for the funding for her home, I am trusting that He's already got the funds available. The cool thing is that I have a co-worker who's husband is from Haiti and she's sharing this with him and his family to see what they can do to help. PH is also looking into their role as supporters of this as well. SO cool!

My friend Tesfaye is working hard to get his ministry up and running in Addis. His is so blessed and God is opening so many great doors and providing for him that I am excited for him. I LOVE to see his emails to me with the excitement around him, even with the hardship of the leper colony that he ministers to. Now THAT is ministry don't you think?!

You know what's so cool about the 2 people above? They are both young and vibrant and following God with passion! LOVE it!

We are attempting to work with other churches to bring them along board with our mission trip so as to gain more funding and perhaps church support to help the ministries we will be visiting with while there in ET.

God is pulling together our adoption paperwork... we have our last HS on Tuesday and our application is in to AAI! :) We were thinking of using WACAP and still highly recommend them, especially after they were so great when we were looking into China, but AAI is where our last adoption was and we trust and love them. We should be getting our waiting child DVD and info soon...yippee!

God is stirring up hearts around us... and stirring up more in both D and my hearts... we are in prayer about some long range plans and what God is working out for us... we are excited to see where it's taking us. D is very discouraged and sad in his current situation and I believe God is working in him in a big way...he's just not hearing it. He doesn't have a support system like I do...even if many of my support people are I do have the support and the people to put me in my place when need be, and to lift me when need be and who GET me. :) He doesn't have that...will you pray that He put a Godly man in my D's life to be a friend and support? Thank you!

I started my first guitar lesson! :) I have learned that I have to keep my nails short, toughen up my fingers, and how to play the chord of D. :) Yippee!!! :)

Great things happening because God is mixing with us! Tell me what He's doing in your life friends!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Found a House!

No...not us... :)
But my friend Rhyan has found the house in Haiti that will become Home to children with hiv.

She needs your help. It's 10k to fund the rent for a year...she has broken down the cost in easy increments and if we all help it can happen easily and quickly.

I believe in His provision and know that we can all chip in! :)

Go to her blog and check it's gorgeous!

Give if you can! Pray if you will! :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Finding Balance

So since my "Runnin Runnin" post I have been thinking alot about balance.

It's tough to find sometimes I think. Don't you?

We find all the things we need to do, get overwhelmed and either do them all and become exhausted or do none of them and feel like failures. Ok...that's just me I am talking about.

Yesterday in Sunday school we were getting to the end of our Out Live Your Life study, still talking about those things that we need to be doing to make a difference in the world. Many in the class are still looking for that thing that is going to spur them into action. And that's ok...sometimes it takes a minute...or a year....or 10.

I started to think about all the things I have been doing and I see the common thread...I mean, there's always been a common thread but it's becoming more defined. There have been times even recently that I just keep feeling like there's so much to do in the world, so much that needs changed and helped and I want to just do it all. But that's just not possible. I personally cannot do it all...and how arrogant to think that I even could.

In the Mission Committee that I chair at church last week I asked the group to talk about their passions. I asked them to think about why they are passionate, and why they decided to become involved in the ministry that they head. How can they then translate that into getting others passionate with them.

It's had me thinking about the areas I am passionate, and how I have actually kind of segregated those areas into separate areas of life...I live several lives like a double agent...only WAY cooler! :)

In church it's missions. I am passionate about getting the people of the church to see outside of themselves and the 4 walls and in the case of Ethiopia outside of many comfort zones.

I am passionate about orphans and their care, both in country where they should stay if they can, and adoption where it's possible and needed.

I am passionate about hiv education and care. I hate to see the #'s of people that are STILL dying, the # of children that are orphaned because of it. I LOVE what Rhyan is doing in Haiti with trying to get a home together and have them stay in country and learn to love and live and be active citizens.

I am passionate about helping my friend Tesfaye as well as Ruth and Samy in Ethiopia find what they need to help the children and people that they minister to.

I am passionate about getting our church conference to have a presence in Ethiopia so that we can make a bigger difference in the lives of those that I love and He loves even more.

I am passionate about my family...and my love for them and the HUGE blessing that God has given me in letting me have them for a little while this side of heaven.

My balance is that I know that God has set me on a path. I am where I am supposed to be for now. All of my passions intersect with Him... He has called me here, for this time. There is much to do, and He's asked me to do a small part. I am not stressed, I am stoked. I love that He's asked me to be a part of this moment in time. I am stoked that He's given me the past to draw from to be able to do what I am doing now and helping me to grow into the next step He has for us all.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Irresistibly Sweet Blog Award....

Hey check this out... I won an award! :) And doesn't it look yummy?! It was a surprise, so I thought I would share it with you. :)

Sharon from Gently Mad gave it to me...thank you Sharon!!

Here are the rules:
Ok. The rules for this one is to list five guilty pleasures. Let's see:
1. I spend way too much time reading blogs

2. I LOVE popcorn. I pop my own every night, the old fashioned way in a pot with olive oil.

3. I use Tagalong cookies as therapy.

4. I love to read and can lose track of the time when reading a really good book.

5. I enjoy just sitting on the couch snuggling with my kiddos.

Ok. Now here are 5 bloggers whose sites I think are worth visiting.


And because I can, I am adding more:

Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Ok, so I don't usually listen to the Black Eyed Peas but their song that says "Runnin, Runnin..." is stuck in my head.

Things have been moving forward in life even as I wanted them to stop for a moment so that I could grieve, guess it's good to move forward rather than wallow though huh?

We have a couple of fun mission team updates coming, more fundraisers for that. The trip is in June and we have a long way to go, but just when I think it's too much or we won't make it, then I see new light and new fire from the team to move forward. He's showing us that He's in it and moving us.

Tonight I have a Missions Meeting at church, I chair the committee and we are going to talk about passions...why we got into missions in the first place and why we are moving forward with the ones we are involved with. I am kind of excited about it. I think it will help us all get excited about where we are and what we are doing.

Project HOPEFUL is ramping up some more fun stuff! Appearances, interviews and mission work. So much great stuff, I don't believe I get to be a part of this organization and with these women!

The paperwork for the adoption is going to be the death of me...LOL Can I get an Amen?! You would think that it wouldn't be that hard since we have done this before, but with everything else it's making me a bit bonkers. :) GOOD bonkers! But Bonkers all the same...and on top of that I am working with a fantabulous momma to fund raise together for our's such an awesome idea! Can't wait to share!

AND we have the new Haiti connection. That's so fun! Check out Rhyan's Blog she is getting ready to move in some really awesome ways in Haiti. That country still needs so much love and attention...both the children and adults!

I also have to try to actually work my 'real' job and be momma. hhhmmm :)

I am a bit bonkers but loving it. I feel like God's been moving me in an amazing direction and feel Him with each of us. We are getting socked pretty hard financially...but that's Satan trying to get us to look at the world and not at what God is doing. Satan knows our weakness, but we know HIS strength.

Will you be in prayer with us? How can we pray for you?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Valentine's Day and the passing of my grandmother has had me thinking alot about love.

I had thought, even before all of the recent events that I am truly loved and truly blessed. These past couple of weeks have solidified that for me.

I have always known that my grandparents had something special. They had been married 68 yrs. That's a LONG's a lifetime. And even in these last few months they would sit next to each other and hold hands and smile at each other. They would be almost sappy in their love to each other... really good sappy :)


My brother shared his last memory of them as sitting next to each other on the couch, her head on his shoulder and their telling each other about how very blessed they were with their 6 kids, mulitple grand kids and great grand kids...wondering about what they did to deserve it.

It's not something you hear about any more. That kind of love that lasts a life time.

I had said to my D a couple of months ago that I am so loving where we are in life now. I had seen a couple of shows or something where people were talking about having been married for years and being bored and old and frankly...boring.

We just aren't that way. I mean we aren't perfect or anything...but in this season of our lives we are probably happier than ever.

I was having a conversation with Erin about our adoption and I was fussing because D keeps saying that he wants God to lead the adoption but he wants to put perameters on it...and I am doing the It was a good kind of frustrating. She pointed out to me that we were both stubborn people (SO true!) and that most women complain about their man not doing dishes or being lazy and we are arguing about the number and gender of child we will be adopting. Who does that?! :) It's a good place to be!!

Then I was talking with a new friend about the work she is going to do in Haiti. It's a really cool story I will have to share it with you some day.... so I was telling D about it.

D says to me. "Let's sell all of our things and move to Haiti! I would love to just sell all of our junk and go run an orphanage somewhere!" When I told my new friend that...she said to me..."Wow, you have one cool husband. Most women don't tell me that their husband's want to do something like that"

We aren't moving to yet...

But I did tell my husband that I was really thrilled that in his mid-life crisis that he wasn't looking to trade me in on a new younger model...but was willing to trade our lives in to follow God.

God is pretty amazing! He set the world in motion so that my grandparents would live the lives that they that they could set the example for us to follow...and here I am with my most amazing hubby ...praying that our grandchildren will some day say the same about us. :)

Friday, February 11, 2011


In doing the study Out Live Your Life and then the passing of my grandmother (mom), I have been doing some reflecting.

Part of the premise of the book is that God asks us to work for Him. To do something that will out live you and Glorify Him.

I have been thinking of ‘Mom’s’ life and all that it held. She wasn’t your typical, if there is such a thing, grandmotherly type. She was a lot of spirit in a tiny little body. She was the daughter of a Doctor. She came from money and fell in love with a guy from school. They were a beautiful couple.

They had 6 children. And a ton of love!

She was a lab tech in the local hospital in their small town and I remember when we were visiting that we would hear the big siren go off at the fire station and we would have to stay off the phone so that if she was called in that she could answer the call.

She was very involved with her church. She and my Grandfather would leave early on Sunday’s and travel the 45 minutes to church so that he could start the coffee and she could set up the Sunday school rooms. On holidays we would take up 2 whole pews in the church… we were the Smith Clan.

She worked with a craft fundraiser every year, with crafts usually from South American countries that helped the locals. We would get gifts from them every year. We also usually got ‘regular’ gifts and then something from World Vision or some other charity on holidays.

When I was pregnant I was told in Lamaze classes that I needed to find my happy place for when I was using breathing techniques. I chose the sun room at their house. I never actually lived there for longer than a few months when I was little, but that was home to me.

We weren’t told to stand up for what we believed, we were shown how. We weren’t told how to help others, we were shown. We weren’t told that we were to love others no matter who they were or where they were from, we were shown. My ‘uncle’ Carlos stayed one yr with them as an exchange student, from Chile, in his senior year of high school and he’s one of the first to be flying in from out of town.

That’s the kind of life I want to live. I want my children to know that the world is bigger than our 4 walls. To know that God loves them no matter what and that they can do anything.

‘Mom’ often said that she was blessed with such great kids and grand kids… and we would say back to her that she was the one who started it all. She also said recently and frequently that she hoped we all had the same love and laughter that she and ‘Dad’ had in their 68 years together.

Thanks Mom and Dad… you have left beauty and love!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Saying Goodbye

Today we said good bye.. or maybe it's see you later... to my little bitty Grandmother.

I never called her grandmother... only mom.

She's lived a long amazing life and will be missed greatly! My last time with her was full of love and sweetness. I will always cherish that time with her.

She passed calmly and in peace, and with family there telling her she was loved and that God loved her too... It's all anyone could ask for.

So... we shall see you soon mom... we love you!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Sunshine and Boys Make Me Happy

My blog has been sadly lacking in amazing boy pics so I thought I would share some.....Sunday was a gorgeous day so we went out to the new park near by and ran off some steam and enjoyed some sunshine...

Friday, February 4, 2011

Adoptions and Missions

Well things are moving right on along! :)

We have turned in our HS paperwork and are trying to get together a date when we can get in to meet with the SW so that we can get it completed. I can’t tell you how excited we are to get this going! I keep reading blogs about parents meeting their children for the first time and remembering when we did that same thing.

It’s so funny though…the meetings with both of our boys weren’t the warm and fuzzy type. Neither of them were running to our arms happy to see us. N did let D pick him up initially but then as soon as D walked out the door to take his shoes off N got down and screamed and didn’t want to come near us. It took days of visiting to get him to warm up. NOW he’s a giant love bug and ‘argues’ with me about who loves who more.

E was so very sick and unhappy when we met him. D and I were stressed to the MAX on that trip so it wasn’t at all warm and fuzzy. He screamed and cried literally from the moment we left AHOPE to go back to the hotel. He would NOT enter the room. I can’t tell you how we praised God that He chose that day to get us our Visa and the LAST 3 seats on ET airlines that nite! I think we would all have been screaming and crying by the end. :)

I think it’s kind of like giving birth to my bio kiddos… the first experience was awful to say the least. It produced an amazing blessing but left me with months of health issues. Yet I chose to do it again.

And we choose to adopt again. I think it’s because we see the reward after the labor. So much paper work. So much time. So much pain. So much rejection and in some cases guilt. Yet now we see these boys and see our family and know that God planned it just right.

I can’t WAIT to see what happens with this next journey! Will we keep up our streak of rocky beginnings? That’s ok. Will we get ‘lucky’ and transition easily? Will our children be older or younger? What will they look like? Will our children at home transition well? Will we? N sat down next to me the other night and snuggled in, he sighed and said “Momma I can’t wait to we have more brothers and sisters”.

On top of all this adoption planning I am still working on our mission trip as well. That’s been harder to do. Not because I am less committed, but because the funding for that isn’t coming as well as we had hoped. We had great support from the beginning, but our church is struggling and it’s hard to get them to support things. We are working on some other fun ideas ...God has a plan. I know He does.

He’s been able to answer prayers in some interesting ways. I have been keeping up with my friend T who grew up in Korah and is now going to Addis University to learn to be a Computer Engineer. We have been sharing prayer requests and learning about each other’s lives. He tells me about the ministry he is working from his church. He goes out and speaks to the street kids and tells them about Jesus. He also has had 3 sets of teen girls that have come to the church he works with that are recently orphaned and need homes and care. Just yesterday he told me about a 16 yr old girl that is now caring for her baby sisters. He sends me their pictures so that we can pray together for them. He also helps to find families and women in Korah that the girls can live with. Recently he asked me to pray about him being able to get a lap top. It would help with his ministry as well as with his future career, the computer he’s been working from is over 5 yrs old…which in computer speak is ancient.

Anyway, I asked a co-worker…one of our IT guys… if he would keep an ear out for someone maybe wanting to upgrade a lap top and willing to give up the old one for T. The co-worker contacted me to let me know that he will be taking care of it himself. And you know the cool part? He’s Muslim…he know’s I am Christian and what it’s for… I just love that we are working together to answer a prayer.

So we keep praying for the mission trip and the funding. I know He has a plan. We have relationships there that I know He is cultivating for a reason.

Will you pray with us? For our adoption, for our future children, for the mission trip, for T and the young women finding themselves alone and at serious risk.