Saturday, December 31, 2011

A memorable Christmas and recap of 2011!

It is so hard to believe that this is the last day of 2011!!!

This year brought lots of laughter and tears. The kids had a great year. They are all learning so much and remain healthy and happy. Chris and I have been happy and healthy, too. We don't see our parents and family as much as we would like, but we are blessed when we are all together! This year my brother, Brad, earned his PhD. Rick was called to start a church in New Mexico (we will miss them). Jared and his wife gave birth to their little girl, Kadence. This year my grandpa passed away. This was so sad, but I am so glad that I had the opportunity to have so many years with him. My uncle also passed away unexpectedly. We also made some big decisions this year. We decided to add another little boy to our family and homeschool the kids starting in January (except Ethan - we think he should finish out this year). This year a few of our friends went through very tough times, and we hope the next year brings more joy. This year also brought my friends the arrival of much prayed for children. So many things happened this year, and we are so thankful for our faith, family and friends!!!

Christmas was so memorable this year. We celebrated the Thomas side the week before Christmas. The kids have so much fun when all the cousins and grandparents are around. We just had pizza and opened presents, but it was great.

On Christmas eve we headed to The Lake. We stayed in a one room cabin. The kids thought that was the best. It was great seeing the Morrow side of the family. We ate a lot of food and had lots of fun. On the way home we stopped in Columbia. We stopped at Chris' favorite pizza place, and went to the mall. Fun!!

Finally, the last week has been unseasonably warm - so we visited the zoo with some friends and then went to the Plaza for some cheesecake. It was a little crowded - so we got it to go!!!

We are looking forward to 2012! We can't wait to see was God has planned.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Our Big News and Merry Christmas!!

It has been tough not sharing this exciting news, but I wanted to wait for the right time.

Well, today is the day!

We are so excited to announce that we are adopting again.

We first saw his face last April. However, we needed to take some time to think about everything! Finally, we decided that this little boy was our son. In July, we were selected to be his family. On August 4th, China gave us preapproval to adopt him. Yesterday, our dossier went to China (DTC). Chris and Ethan should travel in 5-9 months to bring him home.

We would like to introduce Spencer. He is 6 years old, and he is from the Jilin province. He is described as smart and kind. He likes to sing! He does not walk, because he has something wrong with his knee (it doesn't flex). We are optimistic that with surgery he will be running around with the others, though.

Isn't he adorable!!!

Also, we want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

A birthday and some cuteness!

Devin turned 11 last week! It is so hard to believe. He wanted a yo-yo. His wish came true!! He also got some money and clothes.

Riley and Ruth got some new pjs. They look so darn adorable - I just had to post their picture!!!!

Also, last Saturday and Sunday the youngest 4 kids performed in our church's Night of Praise. They all did a great job, and we were very proud of them. We didn't get any great shots of the program itself! However, we did get some cute before and after.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thankful and Thanksgiving

I am a little late on the Thankful post, but I am going to do it anyway!

*I am so very thankful for Jesus and the life I have because of him.
*I am also thankful for my husband. He takes such great care of me and our children.
*I am thankful for my children. They are the light of my life!
*I am thankful for my family. I am so blessed.
*I am thankful for my friends
*I am thankful for MOPS, Bunco and my kid's playgroup.
*I am thankful for my house and big ole' van.
*I am thankful for good medical/dental care.
*I am thankful for plenty of food.

I am thankful for my life and everything I have. I am thankful for all the experiences good and bad. I pray each day that I show gratitude for all that I have been given.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We celebrated with family, and we had lots of yummy food. I did not go Black Friday shopping until about 10:30 am on Friday! The kids had fun pretending to bargain shop. I got a couple of deals, but the company was the best.

We decided to have Devin's birthday lunch after church on Sunday. He chose to eat at Red Lobster. It was very yummy and we received the biggest surprise/gift. Someone paid for our entire meal! Can you believe that? What an amazing blessing. Sure wish we could tell them how thankful we are for their generosity. On a not so good note, we aren't sure Devin's meal settled very well. He had a rough night. Poor guy!

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

October 31st!

Probably should have posted this a few days ago, but better late than never. Just pretend it is October 31st!!!!

Twenty years ago today, I started dating my husband. It is so hard to believe it has been that long. It has been such a blessing to grow and mature with him. He is an amazing husband and father. I admire his strong faith and how he leads our family!

Five years ago today, our sweet Isabelle arrived home from Korea. She is such a blessing to our family. She is so sweet and spunky! She is a momma's girl, and I love that!!

What a wonderful night for the kids to dress up and Trick or Treat. We had so much fun! From the amount of candy in our house you would think we were out all night! Ethan decided to stay home and hand out candy this year.
Below are a few photos of the kids...

Monday, October 31, 2011


Legalism is something that I have heard referenced a lot lately! It has not been directed towards me or my family but instead towards others that I know. I attend a weekly bible study, and I really enjoy it. I have learned so much! However this study seems to be where the legalism debate stems from.

Those who attend the study will attest that the study does not tell you what you can or can not do. It is simply a verse by verse study of the Bible.
Many of my friends (not it the study) view this differently. They do not believe this simply because some of the people who have attend the study have changed their lifestyle. They believe the study is legalistic.

So here is the point. What if during the study or for that matter any other event in someone's life makes them realize they need to change. Is that legalism? I know when I read the bible I sometimes pull out a different message then others. Some scripture speaks to me differently than it does for someone else. God has a different plan for my life than he does other people.

There are so many hot topics (homeschool, tv, Halloween, tattoos, technology, piercings, worship music, clothing, etc.) We know families that do not allow their children to dress up for Halloween, but they have tattoos and piercings. Some people allow their children to dress up for Halloween, but don't really care for tattoos. Some people don't allow tv and others homeschool. Some people don't watch rated "R" movies and some only listen to Christian music. Still others prefer their girls to wear skirts. Whatever the case, does this mean they are legalistic or is it just their preference or what they believe Scripture is telling them?

God speaks to all of us. He is in the business of changing hearts. It will look different for every person/family. We have a heart for the fatherless. God uses other people for service, missions, hospitality, support, guidance, etc.

I don't get many blog comments, but I would love to hear your thoughts. This is a topic that I hadn't really thought about until recently. I understand that some people may very well be in a legalistic environment, but in many cases can it just be God changing hearts? I know God has changed me in the last several years!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Random Cuteness

Riley loves dressing up! He thinks he is "all that".
I just had to post a few photos of him. That boy cracks me up!
And yes, he is very ornery!!!!!
Of course, I think all my kids are adorable. I just wish my big boys would let me take more photos of them.
I am one blessed mommy.

Thanks for the memories!

My grandpa passed away last week. He was 91 years old and still mowed his lawn and tended his garden. When my grandma got sick several years ago he never left her side. He took such good care of her until she went to heaven. At the funeral, the pastor said he still saved her a spot at church. I love that!!!
I also love how grandpa would still chase his great-grandchildren around and play with them (even though he couldn't hear them)!
I also loved him because he was always willing to learn new things! He would send us emails and make us cards from his computer.
When we told my grandparents about our idea of adoption - they were a bit surprised and probably, at first, not that excited. However, I remember them going home and thinking about adoption and then being very supportive and excited. They were so proud and in love with Heidi when she came home. He loved all his grandchildren!!! I love you grandpa and will miss you very much. Thanks for the memories!!

Here are a couple of photos from his 91st birthday!!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Schedules, Preschool photos and a 9 year old!

I thought it would slow down once everyone settled into school. I was wrong!! Our schedule is crazy.

Ethan catches the bus at 7:00
Devin catches the bus at 8:00
Ruth has to be at preschool at 8:25 (I take her Mon-Thurs)
Heidi and Isabelle catch the bus at 8:35 (I would prefer to take them, but they like the bus and it saves a trip. I still take them on Friday around 8:50)
Riley has to be at preschool at 9:30 (I take him Tuesdays/Thursdays)

Pick Ruth us at 11:20 (Mon - Thurs)
Pick Riley up at 12:00 (Tues and Thurs)
Ethan walks home 2:45
Go to the bus stop and wait for Devin at 3:30
Go to the bus stop and wait for Heidi and Isabelle at 4:00
(Really wish we could see the stop from our house, but it is 1.5 blocks away so I don't let them walk home alone)

This doesn't include Ethan's early and late band schedule!!!!!

Enough about our crazy schedule. As you read earlier the little ones started preschool. Riley goes to a Church preschool and Ruth is going to our school district's early childhood center. It is going great except Ruth cries when she has to come home. She is not good with transitions and she hates to quit playing on the playground. I don't blame her.

Also, Heidi turned 9 years old. I can't hardly believe it. She wanted to eat at Zi*o's and have ice cream cake. She is such a sweet girl.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Home 1 year!

Last year


A letter to Ruth

Dear Ruthie,

It is hard to believe that you have been home with us for one year. I will never forget Daddy carrying you off the plane and seeing you for the first time.
You were so beautiful, but so scared.

This last year you have handled all the drs. appointments, therapies and meetings with such joy and grace.

You have changed so much. When you came home you were so tiny and still on the bottle. In fact, at night you would wake almost every hour for a bottle. Now you are, by far, my best sleeper. You even sleep in a big girl bed.

You were miserable because of scabies. You would also hit and scratch yourself. When you were mad you would just lay down and cry. Now you smile all the time and your joy is contagious. (You can still throw a good fit, though) LOL

You worried us when you couldn't eat solids, but after just a few weeks of therapy you started to learn to eat. Now you love to eat. You love chicken nuggets, hamburgers, oatmeal, bananas and lots of snacks. Ha! You have gained 8 lbs in the last year. Daddy thinks you are going to be bigger than Riley by next year.

When you came home we were told you were very delayed and had no words. Now you sing and dance around our house. You can say many words and even a few sentences. Here are a few things you say "I like to swim in the pool, I have to go potty, I like choo choos, want to eat." You also say "I love you."

Here are just a few reasons we love you so much.

* We love how you think you are so cute when you get your hair done.
* We love how you mimic everything (even when it doesn't make sense)
* We love how you will dance anywhere!
* We love your smile and your many expressions.

We are so very proud of you! You have such a beautiful heart and brings us such joy. We are so thankful that we are your family. We love you!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

First Day of School

Here are some photos from the first day of school!
We have a 9th, 5th, 3rd, and Kindergartener. We had no tears - just smiles.
Ruth also started Speech at the Early Childhood Center today.

The 4 youngest

3rd grader


5th grader

9th grader

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

How time flies....

It has been such a long time since my last post. We have been so busy!
We did not take a big vacation this year, so we have done lots of little fun things in the area. It has been fun.
Ethan and Devin went to Boy Scout and Cub Scout camp. We also attended our adoption agency's picnic. It was hot!!!!!!!
Ethan also marched in his first parade! It was a little warm, but the other kids had fun.
School starts tomorrow. I can't believe the summer break went so fast. Last night, we all went to "Meet the Teachers". It looks like it will be a great year.
Also, Isabelle got her ears pierced yesterday. She was very excited!!!