Monday, July 26, 2010

Big Week for our Family

This week we have 3 major celebrations!!! PLUS, the kids are getting a BIG, HUGE surprise this week.

Two years ago this week we traveled to Ethiopia to pick up Gabriel & Jacob.

Gabriel's Referal Picture (20 mo. old)

Jacob's Referral Picture (9 mo. old)

Gotcha Day Picture

We also have two birthdays to celebrate this week!



Thursday, July 15, 2010


Why I love him?

He is one fine looking man!

He is a man after God's heart

He is a defender of the fatherless

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Medical Updates

Jacob has always spit up frequently and as long as he is sitting upright it is not a big deal. However, recently he has began choking because he was laying in the floor when he spit up. He will be seeing a Gastrenterologist in October. These situations are very stressful for me and I keep reminding myself that Jacob is in the hands of God, who is his Ultimate Protector. Jacob will also be seeing an Endocrinologist in September due to his diagnosis of Septo-Optic Displasia(which can cause endocrine issues). We are also working to get Jacob a new wheelchair which will allow us to transport him in his chair. It will also allow him to use his speaking device without having someone hold it for him. His current chair is not sturdy enough to support his speaking device so I have to hold it in front of him for him to use it. Along with this new chair will come more challenges. The new chair will be too heavy for me to lift so we will need to have a vehicle which has a lift in it and also have ramps added to our home.

Sera had her two year old check-up yesterday. She is growing well and is up to the 50%. There are still several concerns for her that we continue to work on. Her head circumference continues to grow and is now well off the growth chart. We will be seeing the Neurologist in 2 weeks for our follow up and then hopefully referred to a Neurosurgeon. Along with her diagnosis of Septo-Optic Displasia comes endocrine issues. We have our first appointment with the Endocrinologist in August. We go back to see the Genesist in September to discuss results of genetic testing. We continue to be confused about her eye sight. Some things are quite clear, like she has no depth perception. However, other things are uncertain, like her overall vision. I believe we have decided to get a second opinion and will see a new Eye Specialist in October. It is likely that Sera's vision is not as good as we think due to her ability to compensate for her eyes. We are still trying to get an overall heath assessment completed so that she can be approved for surgery on her hands and feet. In the next two weeks she will be having a heart echo and a renal ultrasound. We had the renal ultrasound done Monday and it showed a cyst on her kidney. Now we are waiting for an appointment with a specialist for that too. Once these tests are completed we should be able to schedule her surgery.

All of the other kids have had their vision checked. Everyone has perfect vision except for Faith, who we will recheck in one year. She may need glasses then. Grace has been to the dentist. She has ALL her adult teeth and NO cavities. The rest of the kids have dental appointments over the next two weeks.

Please keep our family in your prayers as we continue to serve these precious children of God. We are so blessed to be chosen by God to be the parents of these very special children. There is nothing we cannot handle when we have God by our side. Life is good.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Back to School Challenge

It's that time of year again. As I was grocery shopping I passed the school supply isle that shows up every year at this time. An array of pencils, pens, paper, folders, lunch boxes, and backpacks. Soon we will begin to see advertisements for "Back to School" clothes. I never really got the concept of "Back to School" clothes. I'm not really sure how new clothes are supposed to impact my child's education? Anywho, I won't go on a tangent. There are millions of children around the world who would love to have just ONE pencil so they can learn to write the alphabet. "Back to School" clothes are not even on their radar.

So my challenge to you this school year is stick to the basics. I am sure now and then a new pair of jeans are necessary but a whole "Back to School" wardrobe?? What if we took the extra money we would spend on unnecessary items and made sure that the children in Ziway, Ethiopia have basic school supplies.

Check out what Lifesong for Orphans is doing to help the children of Ziway, Ethiopia prepare for a new school year.

The school situation in the town of Ziway, Ethiopia is very inadequate. Many children simply do not have the opportunity to attend school at any level or in any facility. The government schools are overcrowded with up to 75 students per classroom. Private schools tend to be somewhat better, but usually have 40-50 students per class. Whether private or public, the schools are lacking in even the basics. Students must share textbooks and cannot take their textbooks home. Even standard items such as chalk and pencils are in short supply and must be severely rationed.

The caregivers and children recognize the value of a good education. They know that education is critical to their obtaining good employment and providing for themselves and their families. Therefore, it is a priority to Lifesong for Orphans to construct a quality grade school as quickly as possible. One of the essential ways to pull Ethiopia out of its poverty is to educate its citizens.

We all go out of our ways to give our kiddos the very best we possibly can. In Ethiopia, this looks very different than it does for you and me in the US!

Lifesong for Orphans is supporting 3 schools in the Ziway, Ethiopia area. We are currently repairing one of the schools and are in the process of building another, but are hopeful to use all three this fall.

As you start gathering school supplies for your kids, would you consider helping the children in Ziway?

We are in need of new desks, lights, and fixtures!

Current supply shelves:

Current ‘desks’:

New desks needed:

Make a donation here and indicate ‘Ethiopia school needs’ in the description.

To stay up to date on the progress, check back here.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010




Monday, July 5, 2010

4th of July Festivities

Yesterday we spent the evening with my sister, her husband and extended family. The kids had a blast and were completely exhausted. Enjoy some pics from the evening!
We ate some yummy food . . .

Got some puppy love . . .

Ate some ice cream . . .

Played some games . . .

Then ate some more . . .

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Ashland Avenue Baptist Church & The World Impact Conference

Ashland Avenue Baptist Church
Lexington, Kentucky
2010 World Impact Conference
September 23-26

(Below is information from Ashland Avenue's website about the conference)

The guest preacher will be Dr. Russell Moore. Breakout sessions and small group discussion will be led by leading orphan care advocates from ABBA Fund, Lifesong for Orphans, and Hope For Orphans.

This unique World Mission Conference hopes to show how adoption and orphan care fit within the church’s responsibility to fulfill the Great Commission. This conference is for anyone who has a heart for both the abandoned child and spiritual orphans living among the nations. On top of mission related resources, there will also be resources for church leaders and who would like to know more about connecting orphan care to your church’s vision for the nations, families considering adoption, and Christians concerned about orphan care in general.

(Another reason I am so excited about this conference)

The BEST part about this conference is that it is FREE!!!!! You know what that means? I get to go!! There are also FREE children's activities. Below are links for more information and registration.

2010 World Mission Conference Registration

Care 4 Africa Children's Program

2010 Ashland Avenue Abba Fund Video from First String Media on Vimeo.