Saturday, January 28, 2017

~The Unexpected~

I write a lot on this old blog about my experiences in adoption...
the awesome and the ugly
the expected and the unexpected. 

Hank had a conversation with Madeline the other day about her birth family..
as I've written before Madeline has a difficult time processing her loss
she feels and hurts deeply and is fiercly loyal to those she loves
Because of a few things she has said He felt promted to ask her this,
"Do  you think your China parents are looking for you?" She looked straight in his eyes and said "yes"

My heart stills as I think of this saddness in her heart and beliefs she has about her past,
 heartbreaking in reality
He sat her down and gently told her that he could never have taken her away from a family that was searching for her. We may never know why her mom had to give her up but she wouldnt't have done so unless she had to. She may have been sick or for some other reason she knew she couldn't give you the life she wanted for you. She made the decision to give you the best chance to have a loving family. Lastly he said that she got what she wanted for you, a big old loving family that is part crazy. 

We can only tell her what we were shown to be fact. That her parents wanted better for her and we have no idea of their circumstances, but they chose life for her and wanted the best they were able to give, unfortunutly that was giving her up. That statement alone is heartbreaking to the core.
We have a copy of a note that was left with her stating her birthdate and "we hope you go to a kindhearted family."

Janie has been asking more questions lately as well (most likely due to her sister talking about it all the time)
Something came up this morning about China so I decided to ask Janie the same question,
"Do  you believe your China parents are looking for you?" She did not know about Madeline and Hank's conversation.
Without hesitation she nodded her head....sigh
I assured her that her family chose life for her as well, she was very sick and they wanted her to live and did what they had to do to save her. Her story is a bit more tricky so we keep the details to a minimum. 
I am mentally unprepared that each of these precious girls hold this belief in their hearts
possibly from imagination, hope, saddness, loss????
I share this because in my wildest dreams I did not see this coming..
the thoughts and feelings going around in their little hearts and minds are real

Their loss is enormous
yet it gets lost in their day to day happiness...lurking just outside

I hugged my girls close this morning and promised that God loves them and made them perfectly
assured them that they are beautiful and worthy of love
they will never be forgotten or forsaken. 

I wish that none of us had to experience great loss and suffering but not one of us can be perfected in Chirst if we don't experience these things in life. Unfortunatly my girls lives started out in suffering....with all my heart I believe God will use any and all suffering for good to glorify himself and to bring us closer to him.

Romans 8:18
"I consider that our present sufferings will not compare to the glory that will be revealed in us"
This is my prayer for my girls, that God will use their suffering for good...

Matthew 5:4
"Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted"
Romans 15:13
"May the God of hope fill you with joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you will overflow with hope by the power of  the Holy Spirit."

and that they will be comforted by him and have peace in their circumstances.

As adoptive parents we need to understand that these struggles are very real for our children. Thankfully God can equip each one of us to handle the situations as they arise. I'm sure our answers are not perfect but I trust that my Lord can override all our inadequacies.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Chef Madeline

Madeline has become very interested in cooking over the past 2 years
she decided she wanted to make her own birthday cake this year so that is just what we did!
Rainbow cake was her choice
so of course I googled "rainbow cake" and found an awesome recipe

cooking selfie:)

six layers...she was very specific about her colors

it turned out beautiful and the icing was to die for, she did such a great job!!

precious girl!

Sunday, January 22, 2017

~Happy 10th Birthday Madeline~

10 years old

I know we all say we can't believe it but it happened!
Madeline is officially 10....yikes!!

this is one of the very first pictures I saw of her...
even then I could tell she was contemplating much, just look at those eyes taking it all in
the uncertain set of her eyes
bless her sweet little heart...
all of our adopted little ones have a special story all their own
...they each process differently...

Madeline is such a special girl, all 10 years of her!!
goodness she is special

~she loves~
hunting with daddy
her family
social studies
hanging with dad in the yard
making things out of the most unordinary
her friends
stuffed animals
hanging with dad at the barn
her blanket
collecting anything
hunting with daddy
oh lets not forget her chickens, she knows each and every one by name
did I say anything glittery?
hunting with daddy:)
oh and Mommy and Janie:)

Happy 10th birthday my special girl
we love and adore you!!

Friday, January 20, 2017

~My Goodness~

She is so very cute

little Evie at 6 weeks
only 2 weeks til we meet:)

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

~Aunt Mary Mayne~

My mother's older sister passed away last week
growing up our families spent a lot of time together
our grandparents had 11 grandchildren from their  3 daughters...
needless to say our grandparents house was the happening place on the weekends:)

My memories of my mother and her sisters are laughter...lots and lots and loud haha
Aunt Mary Mayne had a deep loud laugh, such a beautiful lady

Aunt Mary Mayne and Uncle Tommy
you can't tell from this picture but she had gorgeous red hair...her trademark:)

Hank and I traveled to Knoxville on Sunday to attend her funeral
(all by ourselves, glorious)
It is sad that it takes a funeral to bring loved ones together but that is exactly what happened
It has been 20 years since all 11 cousins have been together!!

here we are in all our glory lined up oldest to youngest:)

my brother and sisters....lined up youngest to oldest!

my Aunt's service was held in our church we attended during our early elementary years
this stained glass was given in honor of my grandparents

meanwhile back at home the girls were taken to the zoo by the best babysitter around, sweet Caitlin!

and then over in Auburn John David was swimming in a I was checking my app during the mornings and evening for his races:)

My sweet Aunt is resting in glory with Christ now and for that I am thankful
I am thankful for wonderful memories of her and time catching up with all my siblings and cousins. 
A blessed time for sure!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

~What Is My Purpose?~

I have been thinking  a lot about my purpose here on this earth with New Years resolutions and such....I have been raising kiddos for many years yet I still feel that I am not "enough" much of the time. Why is that??

As I think through purpose I know deep in my soul that God calls each of us different places, people, ways.....but what is my purpose???? Raising kids, being a good wife, mother, friend...maybe a writer some day???? I feel that it must be much deeper than that....perhaps the purpose of our soul not merely how we spend our days in the minutia of duties???? Does this even make sense?? We must spend our days in all that minutia yet it has to be deeper right?....

As I get older the days seem to be passing like shadows....if I'm not careful they will be gone and I may not have found my purpose??? It is in that thought that I know the purpose of this life is not for me and what I have to is only about God and what he chooses to do with and in me...therefore I will listen more intently....

“He has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace” (2 Timothy 1:9).

Friday, January 6, 2017

~Snow Day~

It's our first snow day of 2017 and the kids are out of school:)

I had to bribe them to pose for me on the way out, they were ready to go!

the first snow angel of the year

gathering snow for snowcream:)

while I love a good snow day I hope we don't get many haha!!
in Tennessee schools close if snow is merely forcasted!!

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

~Happy New Year and Happy Birthday Allie~

Allie turned 29 on New Years Day:)
I cannot believe my first baby will be 30 next year!!!
~am I really that old???~

We celebrated by going to eat at one of her favorite restaurants that is open on New Years

we can barely fit into their largest booth 

Madeline and Janie were playing a game while all their brothers and sisters
kept telling them to hold it down....yep they were loud as usual

Janie wanted me to take a picture of her eating sushi:)
I think she ate more than anyone else at the table!

We are looking forward to our next big family event.....

is she not the cutest thing??? She is 3 weeks old in these pics....

our family has a group text going voting on names which include normal ones...
(must be into E names)

to some not so normal (mostly from the big kids:)
Tall Carol
Moet Chadon Moe for short
Ozzy Pawsborne
Stevie Biscuit
Alanis Morrisette
Pamela Anderson
and the best???
Ceaseless Donna
Confident Heather

these just make me laugh!

Hank is acting like John David did when we got Odie....John David was
 totally into the Garfield movie and the time. He said he wanted a dog named Odie.....when we got Odie, Allie kept asking John David about other names...
he would sit there a minute thinking and every single time respond
"How bout Odie?"
she gave up hahaha

Now everytime I text Hank a new name his response is
"I love it!! Evie (whatever the name I texted)"
He is breaking me down!!!
I think she will be Evie:)