Monday, February 27, 2012


We received the call late this afternoon that we received our LOA (Letter of Approval) from China.

We are hoping to bring Spencer home in late May or early June.

We are all so excited.

Here is how it played out...

We had just pulled into BD Mon*golian Grill (how ironic) to have Ethan's birthday dinner. I was getting the little ones out of the van when I noticed Chris looking at his phone. When I saw the phone number I got so excited. I said, "answer it - it is the agency!!" Chris remained calm, and then I heard him say "thank you". I started celebrating in the parking lot. I still can't believe he got the call, and I didn't. Plus he didn't ask any questions - so I guess I will be making some phone calls tomorrow. We knew we should be getting the approval soon, but we did not expect it today. I love surprises!!!

Here is a photo of Chris getting the call.

Here is photo of us getting ready for Ethan's dinner.

Here is me on 2/28 receiving the LOA from FedEx.

Next step - I-800

15 years ago

I became a MOM!

I really wasn't in a hurry to be a mom. I had never really been around kids. Infact, I had never changed a diaper. However, once I held my son in my arms - my whole life changed.

Ethan is an amazing young man. We are proud of all his accomplishments. He is driven and dedicated. He strives to do his best at all times.

Ethan is also a wonderful big brother. He spends a lot of time with his siblings and serves as a good role model.

Ethan is a great son. He is kind and polite. He is also respectful and understanding. Ethan is very helpful and can always make us laugh.

Example: He does not own a cell phone, and he is probably one of the only kids in school without one. We are not against them it is just that we don't feel he needs one. He has never argued or complained about it. That still amazes me.

All these things make us so proud, but we are most proud of his integrity and character. He always strives to the "right" thing. He always thinks of others before himself! He is growing in his Christian faith and reads the Bible daily.

We know God has great things planned for Ethan. Words really can't describe the kind of young man Ethan is. All we can say is that we are so honored and blessed to be his parents.

Happy 15th Birthday! We love you!!!!!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Girls Night Out and The Line

Yesterday, my good friend invited me to attend the Girl's Night Out tour with Christian artists' Mandisa and Laura Story.

It was great to hang out with some friends, and the music was good. I liked Mandisa, but I really enjoyed Laura Story and her testimony.

Between the two acts, there was a presentation about poverty and disease and the need for Christians to make a difference. Then the speaker made an analogy. He said that everyone sitting in the auditorium is privileged. That if 100 people represented the world then we are the first in line - that none of us are starving and all of us had access to medicine and care. So why then did God put us in the front of the line? He put us in the front to give us the opportunity and ability to help the ones in the line behind us. Then volunteers came through the aisles with information about children who need sponsored.

"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.' Matthew 25:40

Our family understands what this speaker was talking about. We have seen the poverty and living situations; however, every single time I hear someone speak about the situation I feel moved to find ways to do more. At this time in our life, adoption is the way we feel God is asking us to do this. However, we know at some point this will change. I, for one, am excited to see what is in store for us.


Even through this powerful presentation, you could just see that many of the attendees are only focused on being and staying in the front of the line! In fact, they do not want to turn their heads and see who is behind them. Many people were talking, others took the opportunity to take a walk, and many others were texting on cell phones. Throughout the concert, I saw lines and lines of people purchasing t-shirts that cost approx. $25. However, I noticed only a few people in line to sponsor a child.

How and why do we choose to ignore this? I just do not understand.

For the record, I am not saying that everyone needs to adopt. I am not saying everyone needs to sponsor a child. I just wonder what would happen if everyone just did something to help someone in need. The need is so great. What can you do for the single mom, the widow, the homeless, the physically or mentally disabled, the foster children, the orphan, the hungry, the hurting...the list goes on and on.

What if God had placed you our your loved one in the back of the line?

I think it is about time that we turn our heads and realize why God put us in the front of the line!!!!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Catching up!

We have had a busy month!!!!

We started homeschooling three of the kids in January (5th grade, 3rd grade and K). Ethan is finishing up his Freshmen year at the high school. The two youngest are still in preschool. We are really enjoying homeschooling! Heidi and Isabelle even accepted Christ. What a blessing! We will homeschool Spencer and Riley next year. Ethan has not decided what he is doing yet. Here are a few photos.

Ethan is keeping busy with Scholar Bowl and Band. Ethan and Devin are still active in Boy Scouts. Devin, Heidi and Isabelle are participating in Upwards. They are learning a lot! I am playing volleyball (no pictures of that). It has been so much fun!!!!!

We took a mini-vacation to St. Louis a few weeks ago. We went to the zoo, Science Center and Planetarium. We are studying Astronomy - so the kids really enjoyed it! We loved the hotel we stayed in. We really liked the continental breakfast.

We also enjoyed the Year of the Dragon (Chinese New Year) by visiting one of our favorite Chinese restaurant.

Today was a "snow day" for Ethan! The other kids worked on a few subjects. Then we baked cupcakes for Valentine's Day. After that, everyone bundled up to play in the snow. It was so much fun! However, I didn't get any pictures because my camera decided not to work!!!

We are still waiting on our LOA from China. We are on day 50!!!