Monday, August 29, 2011

Created for Care Retreat

That's right, I'm talking about it again.  Because I really think you should go. 

That's right....YOU. 

As long as you're female. 

Are you thinking about adoption? 

Are you in the process of adoption? 

Are you an adoptive parent? 

This is the conference for you.  

It's in a beautiful lodge near Lake Lanier, GA.   

And it's affordable. 

It's refreshing and encouraging. 

Connecting with other women in the journey.  Encouraging one another in the waiting.  Praying with one another through process.  

Learning about adoption and foster care and orphan care. 

Registration opens this Thursday,  September 1st.  Last year it sold out in 48 hours.  

For more information about the conference click here

For information on the specific breakout sessions during the retreat click here.

Hope to see you there!  

Sunday, August 28, 2011


There are only a few days left to donate to our matching grant! 

We have been SO blessed by the donations of our family, friends, and strangers.

If you are still interested in donating, please click here for more information.

All donations MUST be POSTMARKED by September 1st.

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you to all of you who have donated!!!!!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

40 years...A Love Story

Forty years ago this week, my parents were married.  Their story started out much like other couples, a chance meeting, a budding romance, and eventually marriage.  It was what came after their wedding that was truly a unique love story

But first, back to the beginning...My parents were in the same physical education program in college.  They met when dad misspelled mom’s name on a sign, and she was sure to let him know it.  He thought she was cute and started pursuing her. She eventually fell for my athletic, muscular, funny dad.  After dating for a while, my father was drafted into the army.

In his mind, the sensible thing was to break up-- no need trying to make things work long distance.  Mom most definitely disagreed, and an argument ensued which involved a brick being launched toward my father’s head.  Though athletic, my mom is a lefty, which automatically garnered her with a tendency for wild pitches.  She fortunately missed, and dad left for the army. Somehow through letters and cards their love endured while dad was away.

They married in 1971 and started life as young newlyweds.  It was about a year into the marriage that my father contracted encephalitis, otherwise known as inflammation of the brain.  Though often fatal, my father escaped death, but was left with an extensive road to recovery.  After a lengthy stay in the hospital, my dad was sent home to recuperate.

He was no longer the man my mother had married.  My father, who at the time of their marriage was known to show-off his one-handed push-ups, could now barely get out of bed.  Neurologically, he had to learn most things over. 

My mother, still a newlywed, became a care-giver and a provider for them. While she went to work, my father recuperated and stayed with his sister-in-law and his three year-old nephew.  Most afternoons would find my father and his nephew watching Sesame Street, both of them learning their ABC’s and numbers.  

It’s hard for me to picture that dynamic.  Though infertility was a great possibility because of my father’s illness, I was born six years after he was diagnosed. By then, he had returned to work full-time, was again actively playing sports, and heading for his master’s degree in counseling.   

I never witnessed the years of devastation and heartache in my parents marriage. 

The years that should have been filled with adventure and young love that were instead eaten up by illness and recovery.  

The hopes and dreams that were lost. 

The days where my father dealt with being inadequate as a husband and a provider. 

The moments when my mother questioned whether she would get back the man she once married. 

I’ll never know the man my father was before his illness, whether he had different personality quirks or temperaments. I’m okay with that, because the man I have grown up with is the kindest and most gentle man I know.  He was and is fiercely devoted to my mother and to the Lord. I am so honored to call that man my dad.

My mom was and is the voice of reason and wisdom, much learned perhaps, in the early years of her marriage. She is a woman of integrity, honesty, and truth.  I am blessed to call her mom.  

Through the years, their love has only flourished and grown.  While my sister and I worried that mom and dad would be lost without us after we left for college, they found new hobbies and adventures.  In this year alone, they have done mission trips to the Dominican Republic, Florida, and New York. They’ve traveled from Maine to Alabama.  They are the still the best of friends.

I was privileged to have a front row seat to watch a love that had been forged out of fire. A love that stepped in to the flame; sacrificed it’s own hopes, dreams, and future, and rescued someone else. 

My parents did not show me a perfect marriage or a perfect love.  There was no way they could.  It was not the fairy-tale love of movies, but instead, the compassionate, loyal, and unequivocally committed love that can only be made visible through crisis and suffering.  For the past four decades, they have chosen to love through all circumstances.

In a world full of conditional love and marriages that end when the road gets a little rough, my parents have lived a true love story.

Thank you, Mom and Dad.  

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A few things...

1. Head on over to the awesome website,
We Are Grafted In where I'm honored 
to have one of my blog posts 
featured today!

2. These are my "outside" shoes.  I use them when taking Knox out. Clearly, he's snacked on them. 

Yesterday, I was in such a rush to leave for work that I forgot to change my shoes after taking Knox out. 

I wore them to work. 

It took me an hour to realize it.  Now, that's embarrassing. 

My BIG toe hangs off of my shoe and I didn't notice it.  

I can only imagine what my co-workers thought.  

I most likely got a "Bless her heart," from them. 

I think I deserved it. 

3.  Have a Heart for Adoption?  Join us at the Created for Care conference this coming January.  Registration starts September 1st.  Last year it sold out in 48 hours.  It's that good.  

Come join me there! 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

New Number!

Our agency redid the referral list to provide a more streamlined process for families as they wait for their children. 

We are..... 


This means that whatever option opens up to us first, an infant or a sibling group, we are number...

Can you tell we're excited?????

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Plan A

I've been marinating on this post for a while.  Knowing it could ruffle some feathers. 

Adoption is not Plan B.  

Not for us.  Not for any family. 

We have never looked at it this way, but in conversations with quite a few well-intentioned folks, I realize that the general population often views it that way. 

"You know you'll get pregnant as soon as you finish your adoption." 

"I know a lot of people "your age" who are looking toward adoption because they can't get pregnant." 

"Do you want to have your own children?" 

I've learned that adoption is often viewed by many (on the outside looking in) as the consolation prize.  

Plan A didn't work.  So you're settling for what is available.  

I disagree and so would all the other adoptive parents I've ever met.  

There is no Plan B. 

The journey to adoption is NOT a surprise to God.  He's wasn't caught off guard by the reasons or the path. 

For some it's infertility or health reasons. 

For others it is how God calls them to add to their family.

For us, it's because God is made it ABUNDANTLY clear that we are to adopt.  Now.  

Many people assume because we are adopting first that biological children are not an option for us.  At this point, we have not heard otherwise, so we hope to welcome a freckled, type-A, northern/southern hybrid into our lives one day.  

But whatever happens, it will be Plan A. 

We are adopting now because there is a need and we have a call.  In the DRC alone, there are five million orphaned children.  

We could not get that figure out of our minds and hearts.  There was no reason good enough to hold off on adopting until we had biological children.  We couldn't stop talking about adoption.  We needed to start the process. 

We know it doesn't make sense to most of the world. 

God made it clear, so we're just following. 

Any child brought into our home, biological or adopted, will be real and be our own.  We pray that others will come to understand that as well, but we also know that we have the privilege of telling the story of redemption and grace each time someone questions our family dynamic. 

The story of Plan A for our family. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Praying big for the Martins

Blog Friends, 

I'm asking for some big prayers for some of our good friends, the Martin's. 

They are a family of boys, and lots of them.  Four biological and two they just brought home from China in January.  

They are currently in the process of adopting Joshua, a very sick little boy from China, trying to get him to the states to give him a loving home and medical care. 

Today, their doctors, who will be caring for Joshua when he arrives on U.S. soil, told them that they believe Joshua's condition to be inoperable. 

They are devastated.  

Please read more of their story here and join us in praying for a miracle for Joshua.  

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Paper or Plastic?

Knox has had a rough couple of weeks. 

Brian was out of town for half of July, part on a mission trip to the Ukraine and the rest in New Orleans for seminary.  

While he was gone, Knox apparently had some separation anxiety and went to town on our house.   

Two remote controls.  As in, he ate one remote.  I went and bought a new one.  Annnnddd a week later, he ate this one. 

It has GOT to hurt on the way out. 

The look of guilt.  Pure guilt. 

Three pairs of shoes. 

A Hair brush.  Which came back up pretty quickly. 

Two magazines.  (I think he more browsed through them and then decided he didn't like any of the recipes.  More shredding than ingesting.) 

Please note the red dog bone by the column. Proof that we DO leave him his very own dogs toys to gnaw on while we're not home. 

And some thank you cards I'd written.  

To top it all off, we tried to put the leash on him to go on a walk last night and it wouldn't fit around his body.  It's only been three weeks and fatty mcfatty pants has gained at least five pounds. UN-believable.  I'm pretty sure it's due to ingesting large amounts of rubber and plastic. 

On the flip side, he's started killing those horrible crickets and palmetto bugs that sneak into our home by pawing them to death.  

I appreciate it greatly and so does my husband.  

Because the alternative is that I cover up the very much alive bugs with bowls and containers until Brian gets home so he can kill them. 

It's a good thing he's super duper cute.