Dec 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

My family.

They rock and I love them.

Missing...

-My older brother, Jeremy (And his girl friend Ashley!), he is working and living in another province.

-My little sister, waiting for us in EE.  She will be home for next Christmas!!  I.can't.wait.

-And all the future children God has planned for our family that we are not able to bring home right now.

I am so excited to see how our family pictures will change in the coming years!! 

Merry Christmas!!

Dec 22, 2010

Christmas?

So I realized, Christmas is this week. 
Weird?  I think so!!

I feel so "behind" on the Christmas season.  Not that I need to rush around and buy presents and stuff, Africa took care of that, I just havn't had time to "do" anything.  I havn't listened to Christmas music (ok, so I did in Africa but it isn't really the same when you are sweating like a pig) and today was the first day for me to wear my boots.  It's all just so weird.  Before I know it Christmas will be done and gone.

I must say though that I am over the top excited that this will be our last Christmas without my sister.  Seriously, I can't wait.  I am even more excited for her to know that her family is waiting for her and loves her so, so much.  She has know idea what is about to hit her.

My camera charger/batteries all died the last few days I was in Uganda and finally I got all of that sorted out (ok, I'm not going to lie, it was my dad) and I can use my camera again!  I also downloaded the free trial of Lightroom and am in.love.  It took a bit to get used too and I am positive there is o much more I don't know or am doing wrong, but it still rocks.  Put all of that together and I had a bit of an itching to take some pictures today. 

Jumping pictures=fail
But I love the colors.



Joshua actually let me take his picture, happily at that.

And I took some pictures of Joylynn.  I'm pretty sure this was my favorite though.


And another one for good measure.  It is a little weird but I like it.

I think I am pretty much over jet lag...almost.  I sleep good at night but have been waking up early.  No biggie though.  I have been having such weird dreams though.  Lots of chasing and stuff.  Sigh.  I have always had the weirdest dreams.

An adoption update is coming soon.  All good stuff.  God moved some mountains and we are almost one step closer to traveling!!

Nov 27, 2010

adoption update

So I figured since I have been blogging for 3 months straight about Uganda, we could all use a break from "all things Africa". So today, I am going to update you guys on how our adoption is going.  Because of how things are going right now I can't share a lot of details.  It kind of sucks.  Please forgive me if things are kind of vague.  Hopefully in the next few weeks I can share more details.

Our home study was finally submitted for provincial approval this last week.  I can't believe we are still only that far in the process.  So much could still go wrong.  I think it feels like we are so much farther along because our home study is the only thing we are waiting on.  Things in Eastern Europe are ready to get going.  Their dossier is really, really easy.  I have never heard of one so simple.  So as soon as we have our home study it will be a very short wait till we have our paperwork sent to Eastern Europe. 

The hard part right now is that we got some news last week.  We have a deadline.  January 17, 2011. I can't share what happens then, but we need prayers that we at least have our home study approved and sent to EE by then.  If we don't...I don't even want to think about what could happen.  But know that it would be bad.  We are cutting it close.  That is roughly 7 weeks from today.  The average home study approval takes 4 to 6 weeks (sometimes 8) in our province.  And there is a 2 week holiday for Christmas in there.  Right now our prayer is that the lady who approves home studys in our province will approve our home study right away.  I know God has a plan.  He knows how everything will turn out.  So really I shouldn't have to worry, right?  sigh.  Please join us in praying that our home study will go through fast.  I have faith that everything will work out and we can get the child God has planned for us home {quickly would be ideal}.

Just as a side note.  My family is crazy.  Seriously.  I can't believe all the crazy, radical things that are happening in my families life.  Prayer works.  In case you were doubting it.  I see it everyday.  I am so excited for what the future holds.

xoxoxoxoxoxo

Sep 30, 2010

Our God story

This October it will be 2 years since we moved.
That move used to be one of the biggest things that had happened in my life.
Now?  Not so much.

It has been a CRAZY year.

A year and a month ago I arrived home from my first missions trip.

ONE year!

8 months later I found my self on a plane for Africa.

That was 4 months ago.

Are you following me?

I am now in Africa again for 3 months.

Somewhere in there my brother got married and I started public school.

{Cambodia 2009-Place of Rescue Orphanage}


In June, this year got even crazier.

a lot crazier.

A crazy God thing happened.

{Uganda May 2010-Ssenge Village}


This crazy God thing took me by surprise.  I had been praying for this thing for years {!} and all though I kept on praying and begging God I had lost hope that he would ever answer.  And I was OK with that. It was hard, but after years of bringing this to my parents attention, I had learned it just was not worth the stress and friction.  I prayed and kept quiet (for the most part) but it was up to God now.  I was at peace.

{Uganda September 2010-Amani Baby Cottage}


On our way home from Africa in May I was reading my Bible and this verse popped out at me

"Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him..."
Psalms 37:7

It sounded a lot like a verse that popped out at me years earlier when I was so depressed that this "thing" would never happen.

"Wait for the Lord, be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."
Psalms 27:14

Now, this "thing" is happening.  After years of "being patient and waiting" it is happening.  My hearts desire.  People who know me know that this is true.  I might never know all the reasons why God made me wait for this thing.  I already know some of them.  The reasons are as clear as day now.  Funny how he knew what was best and that He knew that NOW (2010) is the best time for this thing

I'm glad he made me wait.  Really I am.  Waiting has grown me.  It has made my faith stronger.  It blows me away.  God is so, so good.


What is this thing?

A child.

A child who I love deeply.  Who has grown in my heart.  Who I have been praying for and dreaming of for years. 

A child who is a dream come true.

I am blessed.

Very, very blessed...

And I am in love
~~~~~

I cannot share a lot of details right now.  We are in a pretty tense situation.  I have been emailing back and forth with my mom and prayers for my family would be greatly appreciated. Please pray that God will work everything out.

Sep 29, 2010

In Awe

I have a story.  I really big God story. 
I just got the OK to share this story. 

Its amazing.
It blows me away.
It leaves me in awe of how good God is...all.the.time.

He knows what is best.
He sees our hearts.
He hears our prayers.

And he answers...

{More to come}

Sep 4, 2010

Just Because

I love this picture



*click to enlarge. It looks better that way ; ) *

Sep 2, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I'm 18 days away from heading to Africa for 3 months.....Can you hear me freaking out?!  So much to do but I need to do a thankful Thursday today.  Just to keep me sane.

So today, I'm thankful for:

-The Internet/email/blogs

-My bed!

-Music

-Knowing that God Knows

-My camera

-My family

-The chance to go back to Uganda

-Blue nail polish

-Ice cream

-LOST (Oh my word! I adore this show!!!  Anyone else out there ever watch it?  I have been watching it on the Internet with Joylynn (The sister I'm going to Uganda with) from season 1 to season 6.  We are almost finished it and I am blown away.  Pleaseeeee do not tell me anything that happens in season 6 if you have watched it!!!!!!!!!!!!  OK, moving along..)

-God

-Being sweet 16 and never been kissed

-skirts

-My hair

-Reece's Rainbow

And one thing I am NOT thankful for today:

-Telephones.  Goodness I can not stand having to call people!

-------------------

I could go on and on. But right now I need to go check on my sick brother.

Have an awesome Thursday!!

Aug 31, 2010

Rock the River

A while ago one of my friends and I went to Rock the River. Rock the River is put on by the Billy Graham Association.   Its a big concert with a bunch of big name bands and the gospel message is delivered between performances by Franklin Graham.  The tickets are dirt cheap to encourage young people to come and the whole thing is centered around the "bring a friend" concept.  It was so cool.  I didn't hear the final number but tons of teens came to Christ that night. Very exciting.

This is the view from the bleachers (It was held in a baseball stadium)


First up was Downhere. If you look to the left of the red-haired-dude you can see the lead singer guy.


Me and my friend Haley. This is an extremely awkward picture but at least we have one. :)


After Downhere they had Starfield but I didn't get a picture of them.

Then there was Hawk Nelson. I LOVED them.  They were so fun to watch.

Look above the brown-headed-chick to see their lead singer dude.  Is his name Hawk?  I don't know. But he is the middle of some weird dance move in the picture.


Then they had Skillet.  Their violinist rocked. They were so good.

Again, its a bad picture. You can click on the picture to make it bigger so you can actually see them.


Yay! Finally a picture that you can actually see the artist! Thank you flood lights, white dress, and night time!

This is Flyleaf


It was a pretty awesome day and we had  lot of fun even though it was SO cold. It rained off and on and was pretty windy. Near the end we got smart and elbowed our way into the middle of the crowd where it was nice and cozy. Ha ha. We are so smart. Despite the cold I actually got a sunburn on my face.  Remind me to pack sunblock for Africa, OK?

Aug 14, 2010

Summer recap

I can't believe summer is pretty much over!  I don't know about you guys but it has been a COLD one for us.  I guess that's what I get for living in Canada.  Here is a {very} brief summary of my summer...going backwards.

{August}--so far
I pretty much fell in love all over again with the girls I babysit.  I hadn't seen them for a few months and they have grown up so much.  The baby {below} is even walking now.  *sigh*


 {July}
We did a lot of family outings and caught tadpoles. 


{June}
We went on vacation to visit grandparent in Ontario.  Driving home {a solid 3 day drive} our van broke down...on July 4th morning...in Michigan.  Lovely combination if I do say so my self.  We spent a good portion of the morning at McDonalds playing in those indoor play places.
 


The End

Summer has been great. Lots of exciting life changing stuff

I hope all of you have had an awesome summer!

P.S.
I can't stop looking at my Africa pictures and have "found" a bunch of awesome ones.  That being said you might have to put up with me posting a bunch of those pictures.  I know, it will be hard to deal with all that cuteness, but you'll live

Jun 16, 2010

Now that I have seen

Now that I have seen, I am responsible
Faith without deeds is dead

Recently I have been listening to a song called "albertine" by Brooke Fraser. She wrote it after visiting Rwanda and I just love the words and message. Tonight as I was listening to it a few of the lines really smacked me in the face. Now that I have seen, I am responsible. Wow. I have seen, and I am now responsible. Sure I'm back home and can't physically hug or kiss my babies anymore but that doesn't mean I can sit back and relax. How can I relax when I have children I am now responsible for?

There are many things I could be doing with my time but one really jumps out at me. I sponsor children. I have SEVEN children that I am responsible for. SEVEN children who seem to love me no matter what I do. These children are amazing, I love them so much. But I have failed them. I have relaxed and not taken responsibility for the commitment I made them. THREE of them have not received a single letter from me or a picture. How sad is that? TWO of the three live in UGANDA. The country I just visited. ONE of those TWO in Uganda is an orphan. The other 4 have not gotten a letter from me since their Christmas card. I missed my little boys birthday because I kept putting off sending him a card. Yeah, I don't think you can fail a child any worse than that. But there is also HOPE. I know that it is not to late to write my sweet peas.

I am determined to do better from now on.
I am responsible, but simply knowing that is not enough.
Its time to act.




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