Philippians 4:4-9
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. and the peace of God which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

Friday, July 31, 2009

The Aquarium!

What a way to beat the 108 degree heat!!! We headed to the Oregon Coast for two days where it was 58 degrees and we needed jackets in the morning and evening!

We took a long trip to Newport the the Aquarium for the kids first trip! As you can see Hannah was very excited!

Our first sight was of this beautiful, deadly fish.

We knew when Hannah and Caleb were awed by the first thing we saw, that if was going to be a fun day!

Next they enjoyed this 'unicorn' fish.

You have to enjoy the look on this fish's face!! It really looked like he was watching them!

These tubes were amazing fun. Watching sharks and skates and rays swim only inches from your face is an amazing feeling,

David got some amazing pictures of God's wondrous creatures.

You have to love the pictures of being eaten by the shark. Doesn't everyone have one?!

And posing on the fake turtles in the park. You have to have one of those too, of course.
And another blessing was when Hannah fell off and hurt herself, she actually cried and came to me for comfort! Praise God!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Passport Follow-up

Remember me talking about getting the passports for the kids?! Well the process is still going and my fears of the missing resident card is surfacing.

We got a nice note yesterday from the passport office saying they needed proof that the kids were legally in the United States!! So tell me if I was illegally smuggling kids around, would I be trying to get them legal passports?

Anyways, off went their Liberian passports to see it that will clear up the confusion with their visa stamp. If not, we will forfeit our fees and have to apply for citizenship papers after-all. It is all so interesting because they are citizens and their re-adoption in the US proves that, but they want that extra elusive and expensive paper to prove it.

Praying for a quick conclusion to this matter and favor on our side!!

Pray for Our Brothers and Sisters

I found this story on the Voice of the Martyr's blog site and it just made me cry-- North Korea Publicly Executes Christian Woman for Distributing Bible,2933,534728,00.html?test=latestnews

It makes me think of all the discrepancies between our freedom and the persecution our brothers and sisters in Christ face daily around the world.

Such as:
*That we have many Bibles at our home.
*That we have too many for us to read each one.
*That each of us has our own Bible we read daily.
*That if something were to happen to it I could just go to the store an buy a new one.
*That if I want to, I can give a Bible to whomever I choose.
*That we have a church we attend regularly without fear of persecution.
*That I can invite whomever I would choose to attend with me.
*That I can teach my children the Bible legally.
*That sharing my faith will not land me in jail.
*That singing praise and worship songs on our back deck with friends is OK.
*That having friends come to our home for Bible study is not called seditious.
*That praying before eating at a restaurant will not be followed by jail time.
*That posting my thoughts on faith here on this blog is legal.

Just as the woman's family in this story is also paying for her 'crime', we, her brothers and sisters in the Lord should be putting in 'prayer time' on her behalf and the many others around the world who suffer similarly.

I am presently reading Crazy Love by Francis Chan--thanks to all those who recommended it-Laurel--I am only in chapter two at the moment, but am struck by the straightforwardness of the book. My favorite line so far--It is not all about you, so get over it already! Now that is not an exact quote but you get the gist of it. How I know this is true, but forget so easily. Lord change my heart, let me hurt for my brothers and sisters, that I may step out of myself and be part of your larger plan.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Goofing Off at Steens!

Drew got back from Steens Mountain Running Camp yesterday. So far these are the only pictures I have and they are 'borrowed' from Brenna's facebook page--I guess that is why they are so small.

Anyways Drew pulled these pink square dancing outfits out of his
grandparents stash--guess he would find a good use for them some day!!

So he escorted Brenna to the turkey dinner at camp. Cute huh!!

After the first picture Brenna asked him for a serious one!! She kept checking to make sure he was smiling, then as the camera snapped up went the hand!! So much for a serious Drew!!

Though I must say a 17 year old driving 7 hours each way with a van load of teenagers and no problems is serious. I guess he can do it if he puts his mind to it!!

Danielle and Ryan's visit

Danielle and fiance Ryan were blessed with his 10 day leave from his tour in Kosovo! While she did have to share him with his family, she was extremely happy for the time they had together. He left on Sunday, not to return till late November.

They were blessed by my aunt and uncle with tickets to the Angels game--right behind home plate!! She was amazed at how much more exciting the game is when you can actually see the ball instead of being in the 'nose bleed' section.

I believe this picture is at Disneyland, as well as obviously the one below. As a serviceman, Ryan was given free admission and Danielle was half price, so they spent 3 wonderful days just relaxing together. It is great that many places are recognizing the service these hard working men and women are giving our country.

And the traditional Disneyland picture--The Happiest Place on Earth! I think they believed that just because they were blessed to be together.

This Our Dark Country

Just finished another book I have been working on. As you can see, Liberian culture and history has been a high priority for me right now. This book is great to get the early history of Liberia:
--its settlement by freed American slaves
--Americans thoughts on colonization
--those rescued from slave ships
--how the native Liberians were treated
This book is an easy read, I actually will have Caleb read it in a couple of years.
Happy reading!!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Happy Liberian Independence Day!!

Happy Liberian Independence Day 2009

From our Liberian-Americans!
Liberia declared it's independence from the United States on July 26, 1847.

Liberia was not known as a nation till its colonization by freed slaves from the United States in 1822.

It is the USA's only attempt at colonization. With the increasing number of freed slaves in the US, colonization was brought up as a solution to the issue.

Also at this point in history the slave trade had been banned (no new slaves brought into the country), but many continued to try to bring new slaves from Africa anyways. When these ships were captured there was the question of what to do with the Africans aboard. They spoke many different languages and most likely were unable to locate exactly what part of Africa they were from, so they were also relocated to Liberia.

The Americo-Liberians became the upper-class from which every president in Liberian history descended from. That is till the coup by Samuel Doe in 1980 followed by years of brutality towards Americo-Liberians and those he thought opposed him. Later in the 80's Charles Taylor stirred things up further and a full scale Civil war raged on and off till the final up rising in 2003--In which Hannah and Caleb lost their father!

Now Liberia is trying to reconstruct under the first female head of state in Africa--President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf. Charles Taylor is presently be tried for war crimes against his country and the surrounding countries.

Hannah and Caleb will pass out these candies with the Liberian Independence Day on them. We pray that others hearts will be opened to the plight of the thousands of children world wide who live daily with war and are orphaned in some one's pursuit of power.

We pray that today you may be moved to pray for these children who suffer daily.


Saturday, July 25, 2009


We have been seeing many new, fun breakthroughs with our youngest!! So exciting to watch!

She has finally in the last few weeks come out of her self-protective shell and is talking to other kids her age! Her speech therapist believes she shied away from other kids to keep herself from being rejected or feeling as though she did not fit in. So to see her walk up to another child and ask them a question then sit beside them to eat her lunch in HUGE!! I almost cried!

She is also constantly saying
-Watch me!!
-I can do it myself!

Something you usually see in younger children, but these are really firsts for her at 6 years old.

Exciting to see and looking forward to continuing to watch her open up! Praise God!

Lick the Bowl??

Assignment Caleb--Make brownies by yourself!!

Yep-He did it all by himself (out of a box)! He measured correctly, had the correct ingredients, and followed directions correctly. We have been really working on the following directions part!!

So he gets all done and I told him he could lick the bowl--And as a very literal minded non-American born child--HE DID!! After a quick questioning look at me he stuck his whole head in the bowl to lick it. Thankfully I am getting a little faster with understanding what he is thinking and caught him before he needed a bath!!

Note to self--Think about those American idioms and what they may literally mean!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Fun Day

Yesterday Caleb and Hannah joined me on a 3 mile walk in the park, while riding their scooters. We then went swimming in the pool and had a big breakfast at the hotel.

We then went to the children's museum and had lots of fun with the submarine, the bubbles, the moving wall and play structure. We stayed for about 3 1/2 hours.

Then a quick stop at McDonald's for lunch and back to the hotel. With Costco right next door we had to get an ice cream too!!

We then hit the pool AGAIN! And took some down time in the room for an hour or so.

Then off to meet dad at the park for his run and playing on the equipment. And guess what, back in the pool with dad!!!

Off to a nice dinner at a fancy restaurant that is Dad's favorite while he is in town.

Then to David and Tammy's--old friends of ours. Here the kids played on the trampoline, rode a horse and made s'mores over the fire!!! David tried not to covet all the fruit trees and quietness of the country!!

What a day!! Home at 11:00 and slept well in a quiet, cool room!

Headed home today to rest!! LOL

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Out of Town

David and I are enjoying an few days out of town with the little ones. We have swam and swam in the hotel pool, it seems to be all the little one want to do.
Today we will visit the children's museum and see some old friends.
Enjoying the break. Needed it!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

The House at Sugar Beach

Finished The House at Sugar Beach by Helene Cooper this weekend. Good read for anyone interested in a look at life in Liberia and Liberian history. The story is based on the life of an Americo-Liberian (a descendant of freed American slaves-only 1% of Liberian population, but the ruling class till the coup), pre civil war to just at the end of the war.

I enjoyed reading a first hand account of what life was like in Liberia, their speech, the foods, and the class differences. I had heard and read many things, but she puts things together in an enjoyable read.

Reading of the class differences, helped me to understand what lead to the coups, the civil war and the hate between groups.

Should be a required read for anyone who has or is considering an adoption from Liberia. I would recommend it to anyone interested in history, cultures or just likes to read.

Happy reading!!

An Early Tooth Pulling!

Guess what Caleb decided to do while David and I were resting on Saturday afternoon?
Well if you are 9 and bored the best thing to do must be to climb under your bed and find a tooth that might just be a 'little' loose and wiggle it really hard till it pops out, leaving a very large hole in your mouth and bleed for about 1/2 an hour!!
Not my idea of a good time, but I guess it worked for Caleb! He must be in some strange race to see how fast he can get all his baby teeth out--only 6 more to go--and he is only just 9!!

Here he is with his canine tooth! Hard to see, but the root is just as long as the tooth itself!
We did go in the orthodontist office where Erinn works for and x-ray this morning. We had to make sure it was a baby tooth and that he did not leave any root behind. Thankfully it was a baby tooth and he did get all of it out, just about 6 months too early! Now we wait and see if the hole will stay open till the next tooth comes in, or if the teeth will push is closed!
New Jordan House Rule
I really never thought I would have to make that rule! But with Caleb it is much better to be safe than sorry!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Lazy Sunday Afternoon!!

What does a lazy Sunday afternoon look like around our house?

Well after David spent 1 1/2 hours spraying the yard, he came in and showered and ate, then read the paper. Finally he got down on the floor with his new book (Joker One) and promptly fell asleep, snoring and all. I mean it took all of two minutes for him to fall asleep once we got the attacking children off him!! Why the floor you may ask? Well with his AS, it feels good to him to stretch out on a flat surface.

Hannah and Caleb spent time helping clean the house for Bible study tonight, they quietly read in their beds, they attacked their dad, and then played together while Dad finished his rest!

Drew is in the Steens Mountains for the week, for his high altitude running camp. It will be quieter around here this week! LOL! He successfully drove our van with 6 other teenagers on a 7 hour journey to Eastern Oregon, following his coach. I was one stressed mom till I hear that they had made it safely. I would
covet your prayers next Saturday as they will make
the trip back after a week of camp and are much more tired. He will have one other driver to help him if he needs to rest on the way home.

Erinn has been out all day with friends, movies or something before her busy week starts. She has started giving private swim lessons on her days off. Does not give her much time for play. She started teaching Hannah and Caleb this week.

As for Danielle, I have strangely not heard from her this week!! It could have something to do with Ryan being home on leave this week!! What do you think?

Thanking the Lord for Drew's safe trip, David's continued ability to run, family, health, and a Savior that loves us with an amazing love and pours out His grace and Mercy on us!!!!

Marathon Training Continues!

So David and I both continue to train for the Portland Marathon. David is trying to run a Boston qualifier time--I on the other hand would just like to finish!!
On Wednesday evening at 7:30 I took off for a 14 mile walk alone at the end of a 100 degree day! I was able to keep a pretty good clip going both walking and running while listening to a John Piper Biography on the MP3 player.
David met up with me at about 7 miles as it was getting dark on the bike. He went the next two with me to the track and then walked and ran 4 more with me on the track and escorted me the last mile home. 14 miles in 2:57. I was happy with that.
I did end up fairly dehydrated and all the fun symptoms that comes with that for the next 24 hours. Need to take Gatorade as well as water next time.
David and I got up to get Drew out to Steens Running Camp at 5 this morning. We then headed out for a 20 mile run, him on his feet and me on the bike this time for moral support. Saw some new parts of town and watched the city wake up! Even after his hard run yesterday he got all 20 miles in in under 8 minute miles for each mile for a total time of 2:40!! Yes he did 6 more miles than me in less time! I am excited for him, not only do I get to go to Boston too if he qualifies, but to see him able to run is pure joy for my heart. Praying God gives him many more years of running.

Playing with the "D" Family

We had another wonderful visit with Laurel's family from the "I'm Ghana Adopt" link on the side bar. Here is the whole crew of kids playing Rock Band together.
Erinn, Sarah, Hannah, Elijah, Caleb, Ben, Rachel and Hosanna

The little's trying to figure out what is going on. Hannah's microphone is NOT plugged in, but all the girls had fun trying it out anyways!
Ben trying out the guitar and grinning because he knew I was taking the picture and he couldn't run away from it!! I thought you liked cameras Ben?!
Rachel and Sarah giving Dance Revolution a try!
Now they look into it a little!

PS-No we are not video game junkies! These games were from an office party of Erinn's and were new to everyone at my house too!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Guest Post By David

David was very excited to be running today--Here are his thoughts:

Somehow continuing to plug away with my running, thank you Lord. Did my third race in three weeks today, the Britt Firehouse Run. This is a handicapped 10K trail run. The race is sent out in waves, one minute apart. Women, young, old get a head start over the last group to go out, up to a 22 minute head start. I started twenty minutes into the run, so only two groups behind me. This race has three very large hill climbs and also steep down hills. I do relatively well going up. Coming down I tend to be more cautious as the pounding is hard on my arthritis. Anyway, I had good run. Ran 45:31, 7:25 miles and finished fourteenth overall. Probably passed about forty during the race, two passed me.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Hearing or Not?

We decided we better rule out hearing issues with Caleb. I was 90% sure the issues are LISTENING and not HEARING!! But when you are not sure of history on a child it is always best to be on the safe side.


Caleb makes a TON of EAR WAX!!

Are you grossed out yet??

She pulled an enormous amount out of his right ear, which she said may have been somewhat affecting his hearing in that ear temporarily. The left ear did not have as much, but it was very hard and very far in, and causing a lot of pain to try to remove. She tested the ear and sound was getting through because there was not as much. We left the wax and I will try to get it softer and flush it this week and she will check it again for me next week to make sure it is out.

As for the actual test results---

He hears great!!

Except for very high sounds, which she said could be from loud noises he was exposed to. Such as rockets and shooting--Sad, but true that his early exposures will affect him in more ways than one!

These high sounds are not something we use often, especially in speaking, so no excuses for him not hearing us. It is listening!! But I firmly believe KNOWING is half the battle!! So we go to monthly ear cleanings and listening practice for him!!

Don't you love this picture of him!! I am so very thankful that Caleb is part of our family

2005 to 2009

The 2005 Siskyou Outback Father-Son Picture 2009 Siskyou Outback Father-Son Picture
So a few differences!!
1) Son has a lot more hair!
2) Father has more wrinkles!
3) Son is taller than Father!
4) Son is faster than Father!
But they are still the men that light up my life!
(plus one more that has been added since the first picture)
And the men that keep my life exciting and busy!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Cheap Kid Entertainment

So what do two little kids do while waiting and hour for their dad and brother to finish a race? They climb this big sandy hill by the ski lodge--well Caleb and his friend climb it and one pushes Hannah and one pulls her up it!!
Then you slide down it on your butt of course!!!
Talk about sand everywhere!
But it was fun!

Siskyou Outback 15K

Siskyou Outback 15K on the Pacific Crest Trail!
Is it me, or should no one be smiling like that at the beginning of a run that will take just over an hour of hard running?
David giving the kids a high 5!
Drew finishing in 1 hour and 5 minutes for a 5th place overall finish and first in his age group!

David finishing in 1 hour 10 minutes for 11th place overall and 4th in his age group!

My men at the finish with Mt. Shasta in the back ground.
We have this same picture of them 4 years ago-I will try to find that, it might be amusing.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Djembe Drumming

Today Hannah and Caleb had the privilege to go to a kids class on playing the djembe!

Caleb was very into it and really had a feel for it. He has always loved the drums, add to that the African beat and he is a goner!!

Hannah on the other hand wanted to play her own music to her own beat. Not that she has a bad beat, just that with that many kids she needed to stay with the group! She loves playing though and love the African beat too.

Both of the kids have been know to slowly slid off their chairs during school and start moving to the music. It is like a part of them. Wonder why?

At the end of the class the teacher told us about some more classes and invited the kids to attend. Might just have to try that out.

Otherwise it has been another marathon school day!! When I figure out the trick with this one I will let you

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Pictures Will Vary?!?!

When I checked Caleb's school work yesterday this is what I found.
I was very excited about the neat writing, the correct answers and the correct spelling. I was trying to figure out what was up, this did not look like Caleb work.
Then I looked at the blank boxes on the side and the one on top!!
Notice it says "Pictures will vary"!! BUSTED!! CHEATING!! And not very well either!
Well I gave him opportunities to fess up, none of which he took, so I very calmly inserted into the conversation that he was a cheater. The immediate change was his recognizing that he was indeed BUSTED. Then in wonder of how his mom knows everything!!! I think I will just continue to let him believe that for a while!!
After our moments of correction and discussion I asked him if he wanted my help with this. He said yes, so I promptly removed all the answer pages from the back of the book and threw them in the garbage! I don't believe he thought that was much help! But temptation is removed!
Praying he will learn to be sorry for his behaviour and not just in the fact that he was caught!
Deuteronomy 6:6-9
“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

This and That!

Erinn got home from Texas on Tuesday morning and she has been full steam ahead since! This picture is taken while driving down the highway!

We signed the little ones up for the gym yesterday. Erinn will start swim lessons with them as soon as she gets a few free minutes.

My parents surprised us with a visit on Tuesday. Had a good time catching up and the kids loved playing with the dogs of course. I forgot to get any pictures. We also hit some good deals at Harry and David's, that is always fun. Dad fixed my hole in the wall that mysteriously appeared after the big group of kids and dad's spent 2 hours alone in the house waiting for us after a walk. Don't think there was much supervision that evening!!!

We ended us so tired from the long weekend and visits the next two days that David and I and the little ones went to bed at 7:30 on Wednesday night!!! Yep we really did--and slept till 7 the next morning. Guess we were tired.

Left us ready for friends last night. We are so thankful that our friend Jen is feeling better and got an all-clear from her tests last week! So we had an easy night for her, us girls and the older kids watched "Jumper" and the guys discussed 'justification' for most of the evening!

Thankful for the busyness, friends, safety in travel, bodies that renew themselves with sleep, kids, parents and most of all a Lord that loves me unconditionally!

To take a quote from a shirt "Life is Good"!!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

New Friends!

Just 6 of the kids crowded at our house on Monday night!
Hannah, Rachel, Elijah, Caleb, Josiah, Sarah
I just love this picture of Sarah and Hannah!
I have never seen Hannah quite so engaged playing with anyone! It was fun to see her personality when she was unhindered.
Don't they just look like they are discussing the state of something very important!
The walk home from the spray park.
The beautiful young girls dressed up in the pretty dresses!!
And me with my new face to face friend, Laurel. You can find her blog on the side bar at "I'm Ghana Adopt". I stumbled across Laurel's blog a few months back and have been getting to know her and her family though that. We discovered we have many things in common, it is almost too strange sometimes! The biggest difference is that she has more than twice the number of kids I do, and people think I have a lot with 5!! LOL!
We had a wonderful time getting to know Laurel and Jim and 6 of their beautiful children. Looking forward to visiting again with them on their way back home!
Thank you Lord for the friends and fellowship you have provided for us in so many ways!