Romans 12:2

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

One Year Ago

One year ago today....I found out I was pregnant with this precious little amazing life....Maezie Ann-Grace!!!  Oh, how the Lord gives GOOD gifts!!!!

I can not even imagine my life without her.  I'm so glad the God has better plans for us than we have for ourselves.  I would have missed this!  I'm just so thankful I didn't.


Friday, January 20, 2012

2012 is Gonna Be Good

This is going to be another breathtaking year. 
 I thought I may have a year to catch my breath, because last year was just over the top..full of life and craziness!!!
 But from the way that January has already begun..THAT is NOT going to happen...we are going to have another fun filled year.
  I honestly wouldn't want it any other way...I want to live this thing out wild and crazy and go into heaven on complete EMPTY...because I have all of eternity to just relax and be with my Lord and all the Jesus loving people and it will be perfect FOREVER, we will not get tired or sick or sad EVER!!!

So a couple of things that have already happened to shape 2012:
Kole got an amazing scholarship...4 yr. full ride scholarship to any college he gets accepted to. He has been accepted to a school in Texas..ouch...that's a long way from ME...but, the program that he wants to get into is full at that school, so we are waiting to see what other schools accept him (any that don't are just dumb) and then go from there.  
  All I know is I'm excited beyond words for Kole, and I'm just holding the tears at the rim of my eyes, because I know he's onto his life...a life that does NOT include me seeing him knowing what he eats, when he sleeps, who his friends are, his latest jokes, his latest worries, what he wears, how he looks, are his eyes looking tired, does he look happy, is he looking healthy thrilled for him, I know he is going to go far in life, and I'm proud as a mom can be, it just makes a mom

There's one piece of news that I can't share...but I may anyway, because I'm so excited I can't sit still....I'm trying to be good and NOT tell, like I was asked to, but sometimes GRANDMAS are just naughty that way.  They just tell things they aren't supposed to.  They just do things that people roll their eyes at, but they get away with it because they are GRANDMAS and that's just what a GRANDMA does.  So I won't tell, I will respect the wishes of  the people that better get used to rolling their eyes...cuz a GRANDMAS gonna do what a GRANDMAS gonna do.  hehe

Charlie is getting ordained, and officiating a wedding in February.
Whoa...who would have guessed that??

So, anyway, we are only 20 days into this year and it promises to be a very FULL very exciting year.
 With my heart exploding in every direction and even some new directions.

PS.  I may or may not have gotten permission to post this ....but since GRANDMAS have memory failure I can't really remember when they said or didn't say I could post this.  

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Jesus is the Bread of Life

John 6:35

English Standard Version (ESV)
 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.

This verse has rang in my head over and over lately.  A few of us from prayer meeting decided to do a beginning of the year fast, we all did it a bit different, because we all have different circumstances but all just trying to focus on prayer and do a fast of sorts.  As I was doing it I just was reminded as to why Jesus called Himself the Bread of Life.  We need bread (food) EVERYDAY..we crave bread EVERYDAY...several times a day...we can't live without it...we think about it...we plan for it...we enjoy it. 

 Jesus is someone we need everyday, we crave Him, we can't live without Him, we can try, but it will be a disaster, we should think about Him and plan for time with Him and getting to know Him better, and just enjoy Him and His presence. 

John 6:47-50

English Standard Version (ESV)
47 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.48 I am the bread of life. 49 Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. 50 This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die.

I posted this because this is what is on my mind, but also because I'm trying to contain myself and NOT publish the post I REALLY want to once I lose that self control and it WILL be soon, I have some very EXCITING news to share. :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Today's Facts

3 out of  4 is the statistics of my day. 
 That would be 3 out of 4 of us sisters are having to have our hubbies work out of town...that is 14 children with their dad having to work away from home.
 I'm not complaining...I'm thankful for the work, but I'm just laying out the facts. 
 We are the picture of what is going on in the American economy.  
We are glad to have money coming in of us thankful.  We are thankful for men that are hard workers and willing to do whatever it takes to support their families, but we are each just "HOLDING ON" if you know what I mean. 
 2 of the 3 of us have newborns
2 of the 3 of us have teenage boys
 3of the 3 of us have major medical bills
1 of us has no insurance
1 of us is losing our home
1 of us is relocating
Everything the news talks about it just hitting close to home...ya's not just a story on the News, it is the story of lives "our lives"..the lives of the people we love.  
Yes things will be fine, we all have the Lord!!!  100 % we are trusting in Him and His provision, ...we are all going to be just fine...we are all moving forward and enjoying life and working and raising our families, but times are tough! 
It is not just ALL around is in our home in our family! 
 Not next door...not "THEM" is "US".  
The Lord has been faithful to each of us in so many ways, there is definitively more praises than prayer requests from all this, but these are the facts and sometimes the facts are just hard.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Family Photo

 My Memorial Box Monday story is about these family photos. 
To learn what MBM is click here.
 This is a story of how God loves to give good gifts and He sometimes has to chase us down and be persistent and patient to give it to us.
 He works with awesome people who also have to be persistent and patient.
 Only a few weeks after we had brought Esther home to be our forever daughter, a friend of hers, that knew her before we did, because she worked at Esther's orphanage for 3 months, came to visit her and us. 
 Anna and her sweet sister Alycia came to visit and meet us and love on Esther.  As we were visiting with  Anna, who is a great photographer, she announced that the Lord has laid on her heart a ministry for adoptive families, that when a family brings a new child into the home she would like to take a family photo so that the new child could be included in a beautiful family picture to hang on the wall.  
She said she would like to do this for our family free of charge, as she knew that adoption was expensive and it was her way of giving of her talents and bless the family.  
  What a blessing!!!
  So we said we would just LOVE this and told her we would have to schedule that soon.
 WELLLLLLL, if anyone knows how our next few months went we could not keep up with the growth of our family or get everyone at the same place at the same time for many months. 
 So, Anna was patient, but she soon had to move.  
 Her very sweet and talented photographer sister, Alycia, said she would take the pictures for Anna, as she thought it was such a great idea and she lived close by so surely we could coordinate and get a family photo.  Well, Alycia was patient, and sweet, and we flaked out and rescheduled so many times that it got to the point I was embarrassed.  
Here she was giving us this great gift and we just kept being difficult. 
 It got down to Thanksgiving week, and then a week before we found out Lashae and Chaney could not come, so I told Alycia, we would have to flake out one more time and if she wanted to just skip it I would understand. 
Oh no, she said no problem she could just wait.  Remember, this girl is a professional and she doesn't need to be waiting for me, she has a business, and a family, and she works in ministry, and she is just flat busy.
 So it came to Christmas, and the ONLY time we could all get together for a picture was on Christmas Eve.  Here's how the conversation with Alycia went:

I call  Alycia and tell her we are available for our family pictures that she wants to bless us with. :)
 But here's the problem...we are ONLY available on Christmas Eve.

So this sweet and talented girl...leaves her family...loads up all her photography equipment...loads up this very cute chair...meets this crazy family in the park, and takes our picture...ON CHRISTMAS EVE.  
We can not thank her enough. 
 She did a great took her a total of about 20 minutes to take all these photos, she is so quick and entertaining in the process, and she had some of the pictures posted of Facebook before we even got home from the park.  
This girl ROCKS.

 We feel so blessed by the Lord, and Alycia, and Anna for such great family pictures that include everyone, and now we can hang up these photos and Esther is in them, Chaney is in them, and Maezie!!! 
  I am blessed clear to my bones!!! 
 Thank you Lord for giving good gifts and using talented precious people to do your work.
So moral of the story...if you want an awesome family picture that you could never afford...
 Just one more great reason to adopt a child that needs a family. :) Just Sayin'!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011 Recap

2011 has by far been our craziest / hardest / best / most blessed / most challenging / most exhausting / most most most year of my life!

We gained so much in 2011!!!

We gained 3 by by adoption...and one by marriage.
  One blondie / one auburn head (he claims to NOT be a red-head) / one with very black very kinky hair.

  I gained weight...some I carry on the outside and call Maezie...some I am hanging on to and call it fat...ugh. 

 We gained some understanding.

We gained a few more patience.

We gained friends (even across the world) :) 

We gained GOOD things...every gain included some loss...but the gain was worth every single thing we lost...the thing we lost the most was a piece of ourselves OUR dreams...we gained different BETTER dreams......we have gained knowledge and lost the idea that we know anything or can do anything on our own.  We have lost a lot of OUR strength, and gained God's strength, and His strength is so much better and stronger and ETERNAL.  

January - I turned 40....on the last day of January I found out I was pregnant.  YIKES

February 1 -I told Charlie I was pregnant, a few hours later I learned we needed to be in Africa in less than a week.  
February 2- Left for Africa to go meet our Esther.
February 6 - Went to court for our Esther.

March 28 - Charlie, Lashae, Kole, Rocky, Dani, and Mark brought Esther home to be our daughter FOREVER!

April - Went to my sister's house in Washington to celebrate Easter and to take ENGAGEMENT pictures of Lashae and Chaney.

July - Lashae and Chaney got married!!!  We gained a son-in-law.

August - We went to Montana to be with Lashae and Chaney and check out where they are living.  :)

September - I had Maezie!!!!!  Most amazing gift EVER!!!  

November - We took a VERY last minute trip to Montana for Thanksgiving!  My sister and her hubby and 4 kids met us there and we had one of my most favorite Thanksgivings EVER!!!  

December - 1st Christmas as a family of 10!!!  We had a bountiful year.  

We have gained!!! 

 We have prospered BIG TIME!!!  
Not as the world sees prosperity, but as the Lord sees it and as we are seeing it!

And this has been our best most prosperous year yet!!!

God is Good and has been very generous with us in EVERY WAY and I love every addition...minus the ones on the scale!!