Monday, June 27, 2011

Adoption Update

We are blessed with so many people who care about our adoption process and who are supportive of our family in every way.  We are so often asked for adoption updates and the short answer is this:

There is no update.
We are at the same place (timeline wise) as we were in early May.  Waiting to be assigned a court date.

The long answer is this:
Many of you know that in early May we accepted the referral of Baby T a toddler who we found as a waiting child with another agency.  We were on cloud nine and you can read our exciting referral post here!

Less than a week later we were brought crashing back down when we found out that our case had hit a roadblock (along with many other cases across many different agencies), for reasons that are unrelated to our case specifically, and that it would hopefully be cleared up soon. We went from speeding right along to a July court date to a screeching, slamming of the brakes, halt.  We went from green light to red light...skipped right over the yellow.

And we are still sitting at the red light.  Still Praying.  For good news.

It's hard to know that we did everything we could possibly do to get to our boy in July and it has been hard to watch that dream slip away.  And the last couple of weeks have been especially hard since we have passed the one month date and have seen so many people who received their referrals after us get court dates for July.  It was easier to swallow when we didn't know if we would have squeezed in before the rainy season, but now that we know we would have, with time to spare, it is often times too hard for this momma to bear. 


Even though there have been many tears. Even though I don't understand.  Even though this is not what I planned.

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not upon your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your path.”

I KNOW that God has a plan. It is better than my plan.  It is PERFECT. And that is something that I can take comfort in.  He has not left us.  He will not leave us.  He will be glorified in this situation.

1 Corinthians 10:31  “So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”

While we sit here, waiting for this red light on our journey to turn green, our faith in the Lord grows and we praise him for that. And I know that nothing is impossible for our God and that he has been, and still is, a God that performs miracles. 

Malachi 3:6 "For I am the LORD, I do not change"

So that's what I continue to pray for.

A miracle.

And I humbly ask you to join me.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Celebrating 5 years- Part 2: The Wedding

We were married on the beach in Destin, Florida 5 years ago today...

Perfect weather. Family. Special Friends. Small. Full of love. Perfect...

Not a thing like I had ever pictured it.  

The only things in this wedding that were straight from the dreams I had had in my head were the dress and the groom.

Our reception was also on the beach...

Delicious seafood.  Laughter. Fun. Perfect.

Not a thing like I had ever pictured.

It's funny how a day that ended up being so opposite of anything that I  had ever planned can be one of the most special days that I can ever remember. 

 I married the man I had loved for many years and we were starting a life together from that moment on.  

Plans. Shmans.

Celebrating 5 years- Part 1: Dating

5 years of marriage with this guy:

It has really flown by and been an adventure from day one!

but let's go back a little bit...

When I first met Nathaniel (my freshman year at Lipscomb University) 10 years ago I liked him immediately.  He was tall, dark, and so handsome that one of my friends would always say  that he made her "teeth sweat!!"  Prety sure that was a new one to me, but it was true...he was super cute :)

I could tell right away that people liked him.  They gravitated towards him and it was obvious that people were at ease around him.  Later on when we were dating I would make fun of him because we couldn't walk three feet without someone wanting to talk to him! 

He was a year older than me, but we had the same circle of friends and our friendship began to grow.  When his Tau Phi hayride rolled around in the fall of 2001 his friends encouraged him to ask me to it and my friends encouraged me to say yes.  He asked.  I said yes. 

After that he continued to asked me to his functions and at Lipscomb there was something known as a three function rule.  If you asked a girl to three functions in a row you were considered dating...true to the rule we started "officially" dating January 12, 2002!
early dating
semi formal 12-10-2001

As I got to know Nathaniel I could see that he was just inherently a good person.  He cared about people and valued relationships.  He was sincere and it was evident when you were talking to him that he cared about what you were saying.  I think that's what always drew people to him, and still does.  Nate will sit and talk to people when many would not.  

You know...that guy that the rest of us avoid making eye contact with so you don't have to start a conversation with him?? 

Not Nate. He just gives people the time of day.

Nate and I dated for the rest of college.  Sometimes we were off and sometimes we were on.  There was never any denying our love for each other, but we were young, full of drama, and kind of stupid...well...maybe I was the one full of drama :)

In the summers I would visit his family in Chicago and he would visit mine.  These trips solidified for me  that he was "the one." 
Later Dating 2005


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Ava Laine

I haven't done any updates lately on the girls, so oldest first.

Ava Laine

4.5 years old and she is a true sweet, always saying "Mommy, come snuggle!!" Always telling me I am the cutest and sweetest Mommy.  Always telling me how much she loves me.  She loves the people she loves with all she has and she is my angel.  She's not always the best listener, she moves slow when we're in a hurry and runs fast when she needs to be still, and the only way to keep her from jibber jabbering non stop would be to super glue her mouth shut (which don't worry, we will not do:). But even in the midst of that she is pure, she is innocent, and she is naive...she's my angel.

She LOVES to play outside...sandbox, park, bike riding, trampoline jumping, picking flowers, chasing squirrels and birds, blowing bubbles, swimming, playing in dirt, riding 4 wheelers...I'm telling you-the girl would stay outside all day long and then find a nice place to sleep on the grass if you'd let her...She even requests to pee outside on the grass most days!

She is smart, smart, smart and has the memory of the elephant, but if she isn't interested in something and doesn't want to apply herself then she will not...absolutely. will. not. Strong willed? I think so.  She loves to go to pre-school and has told me a couple of times that she loves her teachers the most.  I am so thankful to have a pre-school that loves our girl so much!

I think she has a little crush and every-time I see her in the hallway at VBS she is hugging on him.  Oh my :)

If you ask her she will tell you her favorite food are bananas and her favorite color is blue. It has taken a lot of practice to get her to color things any color but blue and the bananas have to be kept on lock down around here! But in all honesty, if Ava likes something...she can eat INHUMAN amounts of it...luckily she is my healthy eater. She will eat a bowl of raw spinach with nothing on it at all...who does that?

She is the protector of her little sister.  Nora is always smacking her away because Ava is always pulling her away from things that she considers dangerous....It really is cute, but Ava's rescuing skills need a little fine tuning, since they tend to be a little more dangerous than whatever Nora is getting into!

I am so blessed to be the mommy of this sweet girl...she teaches me something new every day and the journey of being her mommy has been a faith building one that God has used to make me a better person.  The world doesn't always make sense to my sweet angel and it won't always be an easy place for her (but let's be real...this world isn't easy for anyone!) and the Lord has blessed me with the privilege of walking beside her and helping her through it!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

lessons learned

Trusting in His plan...
Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”

And taking refuge in His presence...
Isaiah 41:10 "Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand."

It's all that you can do on this adoption journey...we continue wait on HIS perfect timing...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Sealed With A Kiss

We are so excited to be sending a little package {sealed with a kiss} to Baby T!  There is a family from our agency who is flying out to ET tomorrow and they are so gracious to get our package to the transition house for us and from there we hope it will eventually get to Baby T's orphanage.

We had so much fun shopping for our little guy!

Ava and Nora wanted to pick out pretty much everything in Babies R Us and had our stroller stuffed full of toys! We narrowed it down to a lovey, a football, a picture book with pics of our family and a little play outfit.

It warmed my heart to actually be buying things for our baby boy....I kept saying..."We are buying stuff for our little boy!"  Nate thought I was crazy, but he's used to it and pretty sure the cashier also thought I was crazy when I made her take a picture of us as we were checking out....Nate doesn't love taking pictures (I think family picture day is one of his most dreaded days of the whole year...seriously, there is a long list of unfortunate and painful things that he would rather do), but he was actually a good sport about this one even though it took more than one take:)  (see my sweet sunburn? boo.)

We say a prayer that our little package makes it to him and that he knows that there are quite a few people who love him very much and absolutely can NOT wait to get to him! We are coming as soon as we can, baby boy!!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Simple Summertime

A couple of weeks ago we spent the night at a friends family farm.  They are also adopting a little boy from ET so it was kind of a time for us to both take a little break from the crazy of the adoption process.

We grilled out, rode 4 wheelers, roasted marshmallows and smores, played games, went on trail walks and just had an all around good time!

The girls LOVED them some farm time and there were many tears shed when it was time to leave...I am pretty sure that Ava could live on a farm and never leave...and I don't blame her...she may be on to something!

nor-nor was my 4wheel buddy

making smores with daddy

morning cartoons

fun family time

apparently it was sunny!

 mickey had to 4wheel too!

sweet girls

bear hunting

the big girls

sweet little exploring fingers

sassy pants!