Dec 29, 2012

sick as dogs

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We've been out of town for a while.  And internet access has been hard to come by.  
But we are alive...barely.
We have all been hit by the stomach flu.  It's terrible.  And fast.  We are dropping like flies.
What an awesome end to 2012. *rolls eyes*

Have an awesome day ya'll.
We'll be busy nursing everyone back to health.

Dec 22, 2012

Our paths crossed

We were adopting from the same country.  We were both Canadian.
Friendships were formed.  
And today our paths crossed and we were able to stop in their home.
Short but sweet.
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The star of the show was this chubby baby.  Thankful he is home.  Safe and thriving. 
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And so very loved.
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Thank you so much for opening your home to [all of] us! 
Hopefully our paths will cross again sometime in the future.  :)

Dec 19, 2012

She ate a spicy pickle

Blown away.

For months after Gergana came home her taste buds were very sensitive.  We would have a little bit of pepper in our food and she would complain it was 'to hot'.  We have consistently fed her food with different tastes and she has gotten much better.  But nothing prepared us for this.  Today she ate a 'spicy pickle' (which, if you don't know, our family is mildly obsessed with.).  All on her own.  She just up and decided she wanted to eat one.  And it didn't even really faze her.  The facial expressions she makes in the movies are more her being dramatic than her being in pain.  Abby eventually joined in.  But it took her forever to finally eat it.  Made us laugh.

Impressed.  Blown away.  See for yourself.
[And please excuse some parts of these movies.  This is real life.]








[love how Gergana kept moving Abby's hair in this one.  melt.my.heart.]

Dec 16, 2012

Our family picture

We had our family Christmas celebration this weekend.
Because of scheduling and dad's work, this was the day that worked best for us.
I had visions of getting a nice Christmas picture of everyone in front of the tree.
But alas...that was not to be.
Instead, this was the nicest group picture we could get.
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Life happens....

Dec 12, 2012

praise praise praise!

Kanani has reached her $1,000 Christmas goal!  
She now has a total of $3,176 in her adoption grant fund! 
praise praise praise!

THANK YOU to all the people who generously donated towards her fund.  My prayer is that the money raised will be multiplied and will be an amazing blessing to whatever miracle family steps up to adopt this little lost girl.  Please keep her in your thoughts and pray for her.  Pray that a family will step up for her SOON and that God would protect her while she waits.  Sweet girl.  Hold on just a little longer.
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[also.  It's not to late to donate to her grant!  I am really praying that her grant will grow to $5,000!!]

Dec 10, 2012

humor in learning English

Gergana speaks all English, besides the odd Bulgarian word.  She has for many months now and [sadly] lost her Bulgarian pretty quickly.  We joke that it was because she likes to talk so much, she just couldn't stand not being able to communicate.  And for the most part we really have no trouble communicating and understanding each other.  But some days, and some situations, get mixed up so badly you can't help but double over and laugh.  Never boring.  

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Like the times Gergana finds a set of balls and practices 'juggling'.  She loves to try to juggle, but the word 'juggling' comes out a lot more like 'jiggling'.  And good golly, it is so cute we can't stand the thought of correcting her.  Especially when she asks us "do you know how to jiggle??".  Just about kills us.

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We have been trying to break the habit of eating with elbows on the table.  Basic table manners.  When the kids see someone else with elbows on the table they automatically yell "Elbows on the table!"  This is how the words come out of Gergana's mouth though...

G: "Knee on the table!"
Us: "Knee?  Wrong word, try again."
G: "Eyeball on the table!!"
over and over again.  She cannot get it right.  The words do sound very similar, but the mental image of an eyeball on the table is to much.  We laugh.  She laughs.  It's all cool.

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It's never boring in our family.  She adds so much spice to our life.

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She rocks.

Dec 7, 2012

Happy 1st Home Day!

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One year ago Gergana stepped through the doors of our house for the very first time.  Today, exactly a year later we celebrated.  Celebrated the fact that not only did we survive this crazy year, but we came out on the other side stronger.

We are family.  And I wouldn't have it any other way.

Dec 6, 2012

Date with Abigail

While everyone else was at their various kid clubs and youth programs, we sneaked away.  Our destination?  The local coffee shop.  Tucked away in the corner by the fake fireplace.  We sipped our shared smoothie and played two games of Clue Jr.  

-"Why do you have to keep growing up?  Please stop and stay 6 forever!" 
- "I can't!"  
-"Why?"  
-"I don't know!"

Sadly, sister genuinely doesn't know how to stop growing.  She is getting so big.  I will cry when her front teeth grow in.  She is my only blond headed sibling.  And I love her for that.
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People who don't hang out with their little siblings are missing out.
Just saying.

One year with my Sister

I found these forgotten pictures yesterday.  
Taken just a couple of hours after I first met Gergana a year ago.
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There were times when I didn't think we would ever make it a year.  But we did.
And now I can honestly say that we are family.

So thankful for this girl. 

You can read the post I wrote exactly a year ago here..

Dec 3, 2012

donate and win $20-edit

Giveaway is now over.  Carla D won the $20 donation to the child/family of her choice and she picked this family..Godone-maresca

Thanks everyone for playing along and donating to Kanani!
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Trying something new.  Because I love this girl and I'm willing to try anything for her.

Donate a couple of $$ to Kanani (you can use the donation box to the right.  It will take a while to update the new amount) and I will enter you to win a $20 donation to the waiting child or adopting family of your choice. I'll draw a winner when she hits $200 in angel tree donations.  So go and drop a few dollars in her bucket, and then make sure to let me know so I can include you in the draw! It could mean $20 for you to donate as you wish to the child/family you are passionate about.

http://reecesrainbow.org/40592/kanani


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Kanani while I was at her orphanage in May.  
The thing this picture doesn't show is that under that blanket, her legs are stick thin.  Precious girl.

Dec 1, 2012

World AIDS Day

December 1st is officially World AIDS Day.  What does that mean?  It means that people all over the world take today to support people living with HIV/AIDS and to spread awareness about this disease.  In 2010 it was estimated that 34 million people were living with HIV/AIDS worldwide.  Many of those people are innocent victims who are now sentenced to a life of stigma because of other people's actions.  

There is a rise all over the world in orphans living with HIV/AIDS.  These children are dear to my heart.  I have seen first hand the stigma that these children have to deal with and it is not pretty.  You would be amazed by how normal these children are.  How lovable and 100% NOT scary they are.  I have loved children with HIV.  I have hugged them and kissed them.  Played with them and shared food with them.  Having the HIV virus in their body really is no big deal.  But people all over the world make it a big deal.

So here I am.  In honor of all the children I love who are living with HIV, telling you the TRUTH about the virus.  Please open your mind and get out of the dark ages.

What you need to know:
  • -HIV is considered a chronic but manageable disease with proper treatment, Much like Diabetes!

  • -Children who receive treatment are expected to live a normal lifespan.

  • -HIV has never been transmitted in normal family living conditions.

  • -You NEVER have to fear contracting HIV through casual contact with an HIV+ person.

  • -HIV is spread in three main ways: sexual contact, IV drug use through the sharing of dirty needles,  mother to infant (pregnancy, birth or breast feeding.)

  • -With medications HIV can be effectively managed to the point that the virus is undetectable in laboratory tests.

Visit Project Hopeful for more information.

Please change the way you think about HIV.  It is not as scary as it used to be.  Be informed.
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All over the world children with HIV are sitting in orphanages.  They are usually the last children to be chosen for adoption, because of their HIV.  These children are typically developing children who will live long and normal lives in a family and with access to medication.  The sad reality is that people see their HIV status and turn the other way.  Not only that but they are not always provided with the medications they need while they are in the orphanage, giving them even less of a chance at a healthy life.  In their own countries they face stigma and when they age out of their orphanages at 16 they will have no way of getting a job.  Their future is so very bleak.

So what can we do?  We can get these children out of their orphanages and into families before it is too late.  We can provide them with medical care.  With normal family love.  We can teach them about Jesus.  They will have a chance at a future.  These children do not need perfect families.  They just need families willing to look past their HIV Status and take the leap of faith for them.  To teach them that they are more then a medical status, they are unique and made in the image of God.

Here are 2 HIV+ children waiting for families.  Please pray for them.  Look past their status.  Share their stories.  Maybe donate to their grant fund?  I don't care, just do something.  Even if it is just taking a moment to look at their picture.  They are normal children who long for a family.


Weston.
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Anastasia.
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