Tuesday, October 30, 2012

#$%@ people say

These mamas are hilarious.

Dare I say I've probably said some of these things!?

Some of them are so inappropriate, it's not funny.

Actually, yes it is funny.

I have to continue to trust that people's intentions are inherently good or I'll end up in the looney bin.


The best part?...

'Yes, I'd like to make reservations.  The last name?  Uh, yeh, it's Jolie-Pitt.'  


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

love this.

We hold so much power within us.  The power to show love.  

To 'love our neighbor as ourselves.'  

That's what the Faith Lions did.  

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

big boy!

Here he is!

Walking all over the place!


Although, he does now have his prosthetic-orthotic-do-dad for his leg, he walks best without it.  Go figure.  Originally, it went all the way up his leg with a big, metal, hinged-at-the-knee feature to it.  It was so stinkin' heavy.  Like a full-leg cast!  He just couldn't stand the thing.  He would cry when we'd put it on him and then ask us to take it off the whole time he was wearing it.

Finally, I decided it would be better with just the bottom part.  So at our next appointment with the prosthetist I asked him to take the top off and just leave the below-the-knee-part so he would still have the support in his ankle and he'd have the addition length he needs for his legs to be the same length.  It is so, so much better!  And...he's starting to walk in it!  I know in good time he'll walk well with his brace just like he does without it.

One step at a time.  Literally.

People have said, 'But I thought he wouldn't be able to walk?'  And, 'Should he be walking?'

We're not sure.

All we know is that this is what love does.

And since God is love (1 John 4:8) then this is what God does in a once-an-orphan's life when He places him smack-dab-in-the-middle of love. 

I've loved this song since I learned about Mandi Mapes last year.  But for some reason it's been especially sweet lately -- perhaps because my love for James is growing everyday!  I just want to smother him lately.  Every word of this song speaks my heart right now because...

...this love is the deep kind.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

let's rally!

I am so not the advocate for the orphan that I'd like to be.

I worry about bothering people.

I think I just don't have to time.  The time to do what?  Send a quick email?  Write a quick post?  Post something to Facebook?  Gimme a break, people do it all day long about their kids' athletics or their social calendar.  I email all day long about various things.

I probably care about other's approval far too much.

But I hear stories all the time of orphans being left behind.  Losing hope.

Watch this.

It's so tragic.

And it happens everyday, day after day after day.  For millions of them.

This is a post of a friend who is using her voice for the voiceless in such a powerful way.  When I look at these little faces I feel so sad that my initial reaction is to think that I don't have time to pass it along; that it wouldn't be through a post that I would make that God would help these kids find their families.  So small-sighted of me.  So pathetic.  So here goes.

Just pure obedience here.

(And this post has probably taken me ten minutes of my time.  10 MINUTES!).


I am feeling so absolutely heartsick today!

Two precious and amazing children whom I met in Hasya's orphanage have run out of time to find their families...again!

This is Penny.

Beautiful, sweet and tender Penny.

And this is the SECOND TIME Penny has not been chosen!

She ran out of time to find a family while I was there visiting my Hasya.  I specifically asked for permission to see her and get updated pictures of her because I believed with all my heart that someone would step forward and finally say yes to this beautiful girl!

But no one has!

Her file has once again been returned to the government in her country with the unspoken message that says, "No one wants this child!"

Seriously!  How can it be?  How can she be fortunate enough to be given a second chance at being FOUND...and be rejected again?

The whole thing just makes me weep!

This tiny little lovie has spent eleven years in the confines of a crib!  She was given HOPE the day someone listed her for international adoption.

I cannot help but feel that we, the Church, have failed her!

Like have failed her. 

And then there's Theodore.

This boy is so charming and so delightful that I could have run out of there with him in my arms.  He is beyond precious!

He is absolutely gorgeous!

A very little, desperately malnourished ten-year-old boy, with so much potential to grow and learn and become ALL whom God has created him to be.

A little boy who, by the grace of God, can still find a reason to laugh and smile...despite the miserable life he has endured for too many years.

He is so in there!  He has CP which only affects his lower body. With the help of physical therapy I believe that hewill learn to walk.  An awful institutionalized life has robbed this boy of his full potential.

And sadly, we said, "No thanks."

"Not this one!"

Once the files of these two precious children are returned, they lose their voice!  They are removed from all advocacy websites and will be nothing more than a name on a list in a government office in their country.

Unless we rally like crazy for them NOW--trusting and believing that they WILL be found--they have very little chance of ever knowing the love of a family!

Would you please, please share wherever you possible can?

I am aching for them!

I KNOW where they are!

I have seen with my own eyes how painfully thin they are and how desperately they need nurturing, nutrition, and medical attention.

I KNOW the conditions they live in--it is beyond awful!

Please don't let them stay there!  I have to believe that Penny and Theodore WILL be rescued.

Because knowing their life should they NOT be chosen is just too much for my heart to comprehend.

Anyone wanting more information about adopting either one of these children can contact Shelley at shele337@gmail.com.
This post is from www.nogreaterjoymom.blogspot.com.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

father of the year

Check out this smack down.

I smiled the whole time I recorded this.

I don't know how he does it.


He sweats profusely.

It's the ultimate work out.

And they love it.  

Even James is getting in on the action.

He now likes it too!

So fantastic.


Coming up next?

Finally...a video of James WALKING.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

our summer: in photos

There are a lot of photos here.  But I feel like I hardly documented this summer.  As long, as wonderful, as trying, as sweet, as tiring, as fun, as full, as hard, as brief as it was, here it is!


These two are so incredibly awesome.  Just get the two of them alone together and let the fun begin.  Even a quick trip to Kroger is fun for them!  They love each other.  And, oh, how I adore them.


I believe I already posted this photo at some point, but this deserves a re-post.  I mean, really?  Does it get any cute than that?


A jaunt to one of our most favorite (and free!) places!  Maymont!  It's the perfect picnic spot.


Our first trip of the summer to Busch Gardens!  And James' first time there...


James supervising the ice cream maker.


'The triplets' (people actually ask me that!) decided to have a 'carnival' which included games, prizes, a gymnastics performance.  Cute!


Much time at the lake.  Since we chose not to vacation this summer in light of our major travels in March (a-hem, to get a little someone and bring him home), slipping away to my parents' at the lake a few times this summer was especially nice.


Jimmy Jam discovers the Gator!


Bowling with friends to beat the heat!


Our second trip to Busch Gardens -- with Mimi, Ashton, Gramma, Megan and Mason in tow!


Sweet time with our dear friends, the Johnsons.


Lunch at Daddy's work so his co-workers could meet James.  We can't go to Genworth without going to see the waterfall.  And acting crazy.  
(I decided against one of the kids holding James on the rocks!)


Dinner at the Schwarz's.  Such a nice evening.  
Of course a night isn't complete without the boys romping and rolling a bit! 


A visit to Aunt Karen's -- always a fun time!


James soaking up the rays.  This sweet shot was taken by Payton.  :)


What a treat!  A double rainbow!


This was one of the highlights of our summer!  Welcoming home our friends, the Rackleys, with their three new children from Russia.  Just look at this precious family!  God is mighty and good.


James is ready to celebrate our church's 15th anniversary!


An afternoon at the mall with the Piehls.  James' first ride on the beloved train!


The zoo to feed the giraffes.  Our most favorite thing to do at the zoo!  They are so amazing.


Elmo's fresh from the bath!


Friends came over to visit and brought their pet duck!  Yup, that's right.  She was actually so fun!  But she did poop all the time.  Glad she stayed in the kitchen on the hardwood floors 'cause we were running for the baby wipes!


A spontaneous visit with the Piehls after they spent the day at the lake and then joined us for dinner.


Of course I can't leave out the real bang that ended the summer!  
Brooks and Jackson started kindergarten!

Getting ready to head into the school.

They did it!  They survived their first day!

Let's just say things are better this week than the last several weeks.  Brooks and Jackson have not wanted to go in the mornings, but have done great while at school.  I suppose that's the most important thing.  They can give us all the grief they want, but don't give your teachers grief!  :)

And the final mention...we pulled the plug.  Meet Tiny, the newest Beam Team mobilizer.

They were so excited when the call finally came that it was in!

And there you have it!  That's our Summer 2012 in a photographic nutshell!


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