Friday, November 18, 2011

still here!

for all of you faithful blog readers...we are still alive!  and still waiting.
I really didn't intend to not post anything for such a long just kind of happened.
sometimes it is just hard for me to write during the unknowns and these long waiting periods.
we've been on an emotional roller coaster these last few weeks.  some of the story is going to have to wait to be written until sweet Ezra is home.  but, oh man, is it a STORY.  with multiple miracles involved.

we have learned a lot of new information recently.  a big, HUGE, new piece of the ezra that he is not almost 5 months old, he is almost 1 YEAR old!  we were involved in a paperwork mix up and learned that our beautiful boy will turn one in just a few days!  wow.  because of this newly found paperwork issue we are still waiting to be submitted to court. again.
we were submitted, and then given a court date.  but soon after...the mix up was discovered and we were back to square one.
it has been incredibly hard waiting for all of this to get sorted out.  but we have seen God move in miraculous ways and we fully trust that he will bring us together with ezra soon.
please join us in praying that our paperwork will be finalized soon, and we are submitted to court, and received another court date quickly.  we KNOW that God can move mountains.  we've seen it first hand.

our family is doing great.  eden and charlotte pray for their brother multiple times a day, and just want him to be home.  eden is still loving preschool.  she goes to a little Christian school and if you ask her what her favorite part of school is...she'll always reply: worship.  she is our little song bird, and loves to sing about Jesus.

charlotte is as crazy as ever.  she is obsessed with playing pretend.  we just got down all of our Christmas decorations and we have been playing with our little people manger scene all day long.  she refuses to believe that Joseph is Jesus's dad.  she likes the wise man with the crown.  according to her, he is the daddy.  she also calls the angel a butterfly.  the angel/butterfly kept bringing Jesus raisins and pizza today.  I sometimes have to bite my lip with all the stuff she comes up with.

we are looking forward to my parents coming out to visit us for a few days before thanksgiving.  and also to going to GA for Christmas in a few weeks.  Pete has several teams scheduled to build with over the holidays.  the nights are quite chilly here and we are so thankful for teams willing to come and provide homes for the needy in juarez.

thank you for your love and prayers!  I think I am back, blog world.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

and he shall be called...

after much thought and baby name deliberation...we have decided on a first name for our beautiful boy.  we will be keeping his perfect ethiopian name as his middle name.  and we'll probably call him that name, too. it starts with a T...and I'll get to reveal it along with his picture when we have him home.

and now for the big reveal. he shall be called...
we love old testament names, and think that ezra fits our little guy nicely.
eden loves it.  she wrote his name all over a picture yesterday.  she especially loves that it starts with an "E", like her name.  and her favorite elephant.
charlotte still prefers to call him "baby brother" or "baby epeeopia (ethiopia)".  she says ezra sort of like "ez-uh-wuh".
they are waiting for you, little brother!
we love you.
more and more every day.
sweet ezra.

Friday, September 23, 2011

third time's a charm

there are a whole lotta fun things about having little girls.  as I am sure there are about having little boys.
one fun little girl detail is when they are asked to be a flower girl in a wedding.  because they get to dress up so sweetly and parade down an aisle and drop petals from a basket.  and the crowd usually giggles and ooohs and ahhhs over how cute they are, because well, they are.

eden started her flower girl career in our friends jason and janette's wedding.  she was two years old.

I am not sure where that baby girl went.  how can she be so close to 5??!!
her second flower girl title was earned at my dear cousin erin's wedding when she married handsome bryan.

eden's partner in crime ring bearer was her cousin Jackson, and this wedding was even featured in bride's atlanta magazine! and just fyi...if you need a fabulous photographer and live in should totally hire erin and bryan at tin can photography!
our third flower girl experience was this past weekend when joanna married harrison.  joanna is my BFF natalie's younger sister.  and I've watched her grow into a beautiful, beautiful woman.
and this time little sister charlotte joined in as a co-flowery girl.  they both did great and giggled the whole way down the aisle.

one special thing about this wedding is that it was held in the same pasture where pete and I got married. my parent's land...that used to house our cows and horses.  here are the girls walking through the same clearing that I did as a bride on my daddy's arm, looking at their daddy.  pretty magical.
looking forward to more flower girl years with these precious gifts.  and soon we'll have a ring bearer!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

so now what?

yesterday we received word that all of our official paperwork for baby boy was at our adoption agency, and that they were informing the ethiopian staff of our formal acceptance!  so now comes the SUPER hard waiting...the wait for our first trip to ethiopia when we meet our son and have our court date.
for those of you who are wondering...we will travel to ethiopia twice.  the first trip we will be able to kiss baby boy and play with him, and then hopefully have our case approved by the federal courts.  
the current estimated wait time from acceptance of a referral to court date is 4 to 5 months.  let's please all pray for 4!
when we are done with court we will have to leave sweet baby and ethiopia, and wait to be given embassy clearance and a date for a visa appointment. we will have our visa appointment on our second trip to ethiopia. there is usually 2 or 3 months in between these first and second trips.  and I expect this wait between trips to be the hardest of all.
once we have our little guy's visa in hand we are allowed to take him home to his sisters.  and love him forever and ever and ever, amen.

so that is a brief summary of what the adoption process *should* look like from this point forward.  we are looking at another 6 to 9 months of waiting before he is home with our family.

we can't stop looking at his pictures.  and they are already up all over our house.  I SO wish that I could post them here for you all to see, but I have to wait until he is home with us.

last night I noticed something new about him that I hadn't before.  how precious his hands are.  he has these sweet, long fingers.  and I love how the inside of his hand is a lighter color brown than the other parts of his skin.  
he already melts me.

we are still trying to figure out what we will call this little guy.  his ethiopian name is gorgeous and tremendously meaningful.  but also pretty difficult to pronounce.  so I'll keep you posted when we decide on something.  eden would like to name him "frou frou"  and charlotte picked "joe".  I'm not sure either of those will make the final cut.

I'll leave you with some funnies of the girls the other night when we took them to jungle jaks.  they got their make-up done and it was something to behold.  please don't call toddlers and tiaras on me.

girlfriends were SPARKLY!!!

thank you so much for your congratulations and sharing in our JOY.  I am still trying to believe that he is even real :)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

oh HAPPY day!

today started out wonderfully.
I woke up at my parent's house.  we are in town for a wedding.
I played with my nieces and nephews.
I started a photo shoot with baby John.
and then the day got even more wonderful than I could ever tell you.
because I got a phone call from holt international.  and they told me that they had a baby boy they thought would be a great match for our family.
and I didn't drop the phone...but I did start crying.
and then I called pete and we opened an email together (on our phones) that will change our lives forever.
he is magnificent.
he is beautiful.
he is our son.
and I wanted to reach right through the computer and scoop him into my arms and never let him go.
he is 2 1/2 months old.  he has beautiful big brown eyes.  precious pouty lips.  and I am head over heels in love with him.

I wish I could post pictures of him...but I can't until he is home with us.  but trust me...he's a dream.
here are some shots of us looking at him for the first time...and of pete telling his mom on the phone.

as you can tell...he is already beloved by all!
thank you, dear friends and family, for praying for this little guy.
we are floating on a cloud.  we are so grateful to God for this gift that He has given us.

Monday, September 12, 2011

4 new faves...make that 5

y'all know I love a good crock pot recipe.  or slow cooker.  I think they are samers.

so, I wanted to share two new fave recipes from real simple magazine.  one is called creamy chicken and biscuits.  yep.  tastes as good as it sounds.  I followed all of these directions, but I made my mama's homemade biscuits instead of their easy drop variety (which I am sure are delish).  I don't have a recipe for mom's biscuits...the ingredients include self-rising flour, butter flavored crisco, and buttermilk. and you mix them up until it "looks right" as she says.
really hope one of you makes that yum...and should make anyone happy.

the second new fave recipe is asian pork with snow peas, red pappers, and soba noodles.  I made this one tonight for deener (that's the way my sister sarah and I say it) and we all loved it.  except, charlotte made me eat her snow peas because they were "too spicy", which makes no sense, but she is so cute I just ate them for her.  eden crunched those peas up.  I didn't have soba noodles so I used whole wheat angel hair pasta.  this junk smelled so good cooking that I could hardly stand it all day long.
the only thing I did differently than the recipe advised was that I put the red peppers in the crock pot when the meat had about 45 minutes left to cook.  just because I don't love a crunchy red pepper.

so there are 2 of the 4 faves.

the second two are songs.  my beautiful friend jenni played this song I'd never heard during communion time at church yesterday.  I couldn't stop crying.  which was bad.  because I had to sing the next song with the worship band and start it off all by my lonesome.  I was able to compose myself...but it sure wasn't easy.
LOVE her voice!!  love those words.
once I found out who the artist was I listened to a millionty jj heller songs on youtube today.  I think I've listened to this one called "kingdom come" 47 times today.
well, at least 12 times.

and lastly.  a new favorite picture of eden.  it just captures this side of her personality so well.  she is an artist in many ways.  singer, songwriter, actress, painter, crafter.

happy cooking, song listening, singing, and picture taking to you.

Friday, September 02, 2011


thank you all for your sweet comments and encouragement!
each of the girls picked a name out of a blue bowl a few minutes ago...
 eden picked...
 tiffany from the del angel family!
 and charlotte picked....

you two winners email me and send me your address, please!  oh and what size shirt you would like.  I only have adult sizes left. {}

thank you again...this was fun :)
and we have more t-shirts left...if you didn't win and would like to buy one.

love you guys!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

10 months of waiting

when we started this journey we were not expecting a 10 month wait to receive our referral.  we were officially put on the waiting list on october 25, 2010, and we thought it would maybe take 6 months.

but here we are...over 10 months later...still waiting to see that precious face that God is going to bring into our family.  some days I am pretty good at waiting.  but there are other days when it is just hard.  it's hard not to wonder when...and who...and why not now?!

so.  to make the 10 month marker of our waiting journey into something fun...I thought I'd give away one of our shirts.  yes...we still have some!  you can see pictures of them at the top right of the blog.

I don't even know if anyone out there in blog land would like one...but if you do...just leave me a comment.  I'll draw 2 winners on friday.

giveaway! oh yessss!

Thursday, August 25, 2011

gross but fun

most of the time I try to feed the girls healthy foods.  most of the time I try to eat that way, as well.  but sometimes we eat chocolate.  ok, we eat it a lot.  and sometimes I like to make fun things that I know the kids will go nuts for.  even if they aren't that healthy...and sound kind of icky to me.
last night I joined pinterest.  heaven help me with all the cool neatos I've already found in one hours worth of pinning and pin gazing.
I found this funny idea on one my friend keight's pinterest boards.  I don't even know what you'd call this.  some sort of turkey dog/spaghetti wonder.
we almost always have turkey dogs in the refrigerator because charlotte is a hot dog fanatic.  any time you ask her what she'd like to eat...she answers a hot dog.  even for breakfast.  fyi:  she doesn't eat them every day for every meal.
we also had spaghetti in I made this today for kid lunch.  mama had a salad.  but I would have rather had five guys burgers and fries.
start with this
 then put them together...throw them in boiling water
 have a fruit and cheddar cheese (previously devoured) appetizer
 and wow your children with this funny creation!
 she CANNOT believe it! 
 thanks mom, you are the BEST...even if this smells disgusting to you.
 we also tried a new to us fun beverage item today.  chocolate straws!  I found them at babies r us.

needless to say, the dockery children approved of today's lunch.  it was so fun to see their little eyes light up over such funny things.
speaking of dockery children.  I couldn't help it.  I bought a new crib sheet today that isn't girly.  I love it!!
come on you have a sheet without flowers.

Monday, August 22, 2011

our songbird

just to give more glimpses into our silly world...I present you with live footage.  the first is eden singing a kari jobe song called "no sweeter name".  it has a surprise bang up ending by charlotte.
the second is an original piece by miss eden.  she comes from a long line of musical theater dorks...and her favorite movies include: annie, the wizard of oz, and any disney movie that involves singing.  she can memorize a soundtrack in one day flat.  she sang before she talked.
I especially love her dramatic arm movements.
and how much she loves herself.

happy monday!

Friday, August 19, 2011

I never thought

 her hair would get this long
 she'd look so big to me
 her eyes would stay so blue
that she wouldn't need my help to climb this tree

I also never thought she'd tell me she didn't want her name to be eden anymore.  
instead she prefers petunia.

thankful for all these things I never thought.
thankful for this singing, drawing, sunshine girl.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

muddy waters

to begin this muddy post I'll share a photo of the dirt dessert we made 2 nights ago.
I remember the first time I ever ate this delicious mix of pudding, oreos, and gummy worms.  it was at VBS and I was probably 8.  and I couldn't believe how great/exciting it was.  I still feel the same way.
onto more mud.
yesterday we had some rain, loud thunder, and a bit of hail here in the desert.
and after it was over and the hot sun was starting to emerge the girls wanted to go jump in muddy puddles.
why not?

after that...charlotte decided to pee in the grass. her favorite thing.  right through her panties.  so, of course I took a picture.
whatta gal.
we're loving this fun, muddy week.
adoption honesty:
mama is having a hard time waiting for baby brother.  but I'm just learning to trust and hope, trust and hope, and repeat.  next week will mark 10 months on the wait list for us.  it's been a twisty turny ride.  in the beginning we expected a 6 month wait for a referral (or match with a child).  we have been told to expect a 9-12 month wait at this point.  but, we'll see.  we know that we are at the top of the list, so that is encouraging.
praying for those waiting. those trying to get their kiddos home. and for ethiopian adoption.  we are so hopeful...and very ready!  oh boy, is this boy loved.

off to finish a thrilling game of strawberry shortcake memory cards.