Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Pumpkin Patch

 I took the girls to the pumpkin patch today.  They had these great wagons you could use for free and the girls loved them! (Until I tipped it over...oops!!)
 They had all kinds of slides for the kids to play on and Addison loves slides so she had a ball!!
 Avery was even willing to give it a try too!
 Here are Addison and her cousin Owen peeking out the treehouse window!
 Here are the cousins all in the big wagon!
 The kids climbed up a pile of tires!  Cute!

 Here is the baby cousin...Ethan!  Her was SO good!!
 The kids spent a lot of time on the huge trampoline!  It was Avery's favorite!  She laughed the whole time!
 Addie did NOT like the wooden horse!  A cowgirl she is not!
 Avery was a little spooked as well!
 They all really liked the big bin of corn!  They played in it a long time!
 Owen got in trouble for biting Avery.  Here he is in time out.   I love this picture!

 After the corn bin, we went back to the trampoline.  Addie was bustin' out some dance moves and singing on it!  See the power & intensity!
 Dance off!
 Avery was just watching her sister...probably wondering what on earth shes doing?!
 They really wanted the train to go.  It didn't!

 Its kinda hard to get a good picture of Avery but I LOVE this one!!
Addison is always showering Avery with kisses and hugs... I think at this point, Avery was done!  We had a great time!!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Creative Dance

 Addison is currently taking "Creative Dance" for 3-4 year-olds.  She LOVES it so much!  The other day they invited all the parents to sit in on a class and take pictures and video!  YAY!  Here are some pictures of her at dance!  Her teacher is Miss. Sydney in the green shirt.
 Here they are working on "straight legs"

 Addie was afraid of the mask in the closet.  She's a bit timid.

So cute!
 Watching very carefully!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Singing with Taylor Swift

Addie LOVES Taylor Swift's new song, "Never Gettin' Back Together" and she really loves singing along with it!!  I took some video her singing in the car the other night.  She's SO expressive!  It just cracks us up!

Friday, October 12, 2012

A Rare Reflection

I don't post my spiritual reflections or journals ever...I never have.  They're private.  But I feel so led to post this one I think it would be disobedient; even faithless if I don't.  So here it is.

Friday, October 12, 2012

For some reason I just feel the Lord drawing me again and again to this theme of unconditional obedience.  It’s everywhere I turn.  It’s all over Judges, which is the book of the Bible I’m currently studying. Actually as I study Judges it’s about not being obedient, and the vast cost that has on your life and the lives of your children.  I have been moved to really evaluate my life and seek out areas where I am not being completely obedient as a result.  I’ve spent more time praying about my sin than ever in the past. 

Then I turn on my music which is randomly shuffling my Christian songs, and I hear a song I haven’t heard in ages.  It was “Holy is the Lord” by Andrew Peterson.  It moved me…it always has actually. 

Holy is the Lord
Holy is the Lord
And the Lord I will obey
Holy is the Lord
Holy is the Lord
And the Lord I will obey
Lord, help me I don’t know the way

It just a song that shows a response of unconditional obedience in the face of a terribly difficult road God has asked him to walk.  And the response, “You are Holy, I will obey.   ...but help me because I don’t know the way.”  I echo those phrases in my heart because I want this to be my response too.  I pray it always is.  It is my desire to respond like this.  I hope I do when I’m called upon.

                Then, this morning, it’s raining and I’m just sitting on the little sofa holding the girls.  Its divine.  They’re super content and I’m drinking my coffee enjoying the sound of the rain, the occasional chatter of my girls, and the peace that pervades my house.  I remember as I’m sitting there that I left the bedroom window propped up with a book and check to see if its rained in.  It has, so I remove the book and close the window.  I go dry the damp cover and read the title; itsKeep a Quiet Heart by Elisabeth Elliot.  It was a gift and I have not yet read it although I kept it by my bed thinking I would.  I’m glad it was a gift as I rarely buy devotional/reflective books and fear I would have passed this jewel by. 

I open it up, and there on the first page I read, “He was in the world, and though the world was made through Him, the world did not recognize Him.  He came to that which was His own, but His own did not receive Him.  Yet to all who receive Him, to those who believe in His name, He gave the right to become the children of God..” (Elliot, 11-12)  It struck me immediately, Christ was rejected by the very people he came to save; His chosen people.  Why then am I surprised when people reject me, my pastor, or those dear friends I know love Jesus.  Why do I marvel at this as though it’s some radical idea? If Jesus was rejected, so will we.  There will be “Pharisees” in every church and its only by God’s grace I’m not one of them.  There will be unbelievers in my work place; some even hostile at the thought of Jesus, but this should not surprise or dissuade me; Jesus walked that road too, so I also can walk the road of obedience as I follow my Shepherd, my Savior, My Life.

 As I read on, Elisabeth Elliot describes a small poem she wrote while in college.  It went like this:

Lord, give me a quiet heart
That does not ask to understand
But confident steps forward in
The darkness guided by Thy hand

It struck me.  It moved me.  It was like God was whispering, “Heather, do you hear me?  This is what I want from you; a quiet heart, confident steps as you follow me regardless of where I lead you.”  How sweet, tender and intimate of God to orchestrate so many small details so I would hear His voice; His call specifically to me. 

And finally, as I continued to read I came across these poignant words, “’Lord, You have assigned my portion and my cup, and have made my lot secure.’ (Psalm 16:5) I know no greater simplifier for all of life. Whatever happens is assigned. Doe the intellect balk at that?  Can we say that there are things which happen to us which do not belong to our lovely assigned “portion” (“This belongs to it; this does not”)?    (Elliot, 18). 

I read these words and was again moved.  Who am I to say, this is not right.  This is not of God, and then turn around and pray He takes away what He’s clearly given me?  Its arrogance.  Its ignorance.   Who am I to judge the hand of the Almighty, who has sought me out, wooed me with His lavish love and walks with me, even when I’m to dumb to notice?   How many mornings have I missed His quiet voice?  How many times have I questioned His path?  I pray my response from here on out is, “Holy is the Lord, and the Lord I will obey.  Lord, help me I don’t know the way,” 

Long ago, during our long drawn out adoption process with Avery, I was lamenting the multiple delays and I asked God why; why did he let my baby stay so long away from and I was tempted to doubt Him.  He gave me these words which I still cling to and replay in my mind, “Will you question my love for you just because you don’t understand my sovereignty?”  It broke my heart.  I pray I never do again

High School Football

 Nick, our oldest plays high school football too, so we are at a a lot of football throughout the week.
 Here are a few pcitures of him.
 I love seeing my boys in football uniforms! 

 The girls always come to the games too!  Here is Avery wearing here ever-present yellow sunglasses!  The girls love coming because my friend always brings two little purses full of lipgloss and chapsticks for each of them to play with!  They love them, and hence, love going to football games!
 My little Diva!

Addie was eating Skittles!  Yet another reason to love football games!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

That Little Green Backpack

 Avery LOVES her little green backpack.  She brought it home from Korea.  It was the backpack she wore to the Gymboree classes her foster mother took her to.  She wears it all the time.  She'll put all her little things in there and then wear it around the house.  Its SO cute!
 Here she is, ready for bed, wearing her backpack...and yes...she's loving her Daddy...FINALLY!!
 Playing with her baby....wearing her backpack...still....
 SO cute!!
 Look at her cute little belly!!  Adorable!

"I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him."
-1 Samuel 1:27

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Pretty Park Pictures

 I took the girls to their favorite park near our house.  They LOVE the big red slide there!  I took tons of pictures and they turned out SO good, I just included most of them on the blog.  I couldnt' decide which ones to leave out...the girls were so CUTE!!! 


 Here, Addison is trying to convince Avery to sit beside her so I could get a picture.  She refused!  She's a little stubborn!

 Again, Addison is trying to convince Avery to pose for a picture...and she still wouldn't do it!
Well, we tried!  If its not her idea, she's not too interested in it!
 I told Addison to pose and say "Kimchi" ...When I say this, she always gives me the peace sign!

Avery is doing SO well!  Our social worker was stunned at how well she was sleeping, eating and playing with all of us!  Her personality is just shining through!  She asked su what our secret was.  I said, "prayer".  I know that God has literally placed his hand on us and her.  She is the easiest, happiest child and we are beyond blessed to be a part of her life.  I am so, so thankful for the many, many, prayers our church, friends, and family have said on our behalf I can't even express it.  I read stories every day on line of babies who don't sleep through the night for 6 months to a year or more after coming home, and the fact that I can lay her down, hold her, kiss her and walk out of the room...AND she actually sleeps ALL night, is just a miracle!  Its un-heard of!  We praise God for this and thank you again for your faithfulness in prayer. 
Psalm 9:1-2
I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart;
I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.
2 I will be glad and rejoice in you;
I will sing the praises of your name, O Most High.