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.

Monday, August 31, 2009

20 Miler!!!

Just got home from my 20 mile training walk/run for the marathon!!! Ouch!! Yesterday I was not feeling real up to par, so I did not eat much all afternoon and skipped dinner all together. Then I got the call about the walk and did not think about what skipping a meal would do to my early morning walk. Was doing well till about 15 miles then it just became pain in the back, pain in the gut, pain in the feet....guess you get the idea!! Anyways all done for today after 4 hours and 16 minutes!! Yeah!!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Friday in Bend

Friday was a fun and full day in Bend.

We started the morning with runs and bike rides all around. Hannah rode with me on my 6 mile run/walk, Caleb rode with Dad on his run and Drew ran circles around all of us. He actually surprised Hannah and I at our detour to the park, ran right up and scared us both!!

Then after breakfast it was off to rock climb--I have some great pictures to post if I can get it all running when I get home. Then swimming and hot tubing. The kids also played on the blow up slide.

Erinn arrived just as we got done and we enjoyed BLT's together and watched part of "Martian Child". Dad and Caleb got in a quick game of Stratego. Then Erinn and Drew went fishing and swimming in the Deschutes, while David and I took the little guys on a bike ride to the park then to the pool where we were met by the big kids.

We came home and finished "Martian Child" while another game of Stratego was on.

Then we headed out to the Lava Tube--A mile long underground tunnel created by flowing lava. We went after hours with our rickety flashlights into the blackness of this tunnel. Thankfully my older son was being extremely responsible and remembered extra batteries.


As we were heading into the tunnel, Caleb started worrying, he is extremely afraid of the dark and bears. So you can see what a problem a big, dark, underground tunnel was causing for him. So as I was trying to convince my younger son that he would be OK in the tunnel.....I was also trying to convince that older responsible son I was just talking about, that it would not be a good idea to jump out of the dark roaring like a bear in front of his little brother. We made it through the tunnel with no big surprises.

We came home and enjoyed tacos. Then Erinn and I headed into the jacuzzi with the littles to warm up after the 42 degree tunnel experience.

Then off the bed for the littles and and watching "Sahara" for us older ones.

Does my life always seem exciting or is it just me? I would not change it for the world!!!!!! Even though I am exhausted!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Off to Bend

I am totally looking forward to the next 4 days alone with my family!! Erinn will join us tomorrow after Mike flies back home to Texas, and Drew will be able to head out with us today!

The big challenge will be to convince David that vacation mean rest!!! Not filling up every moment with unbridled activity and coming home way more tired than when you left!!! You got to know him or one like him to understand. I am thinking of bringing some rope so I can tie him to the chair for a few hours each day!!! Seriously!

I have some school stuff to go through, but am mostly excited to have time to finish Crazy Love and get started on my new sensory integration book.

We have lots of games and sports equipment going too, for some good time together. Hoping to get the camera re hooked up to the computer so we can post some pictures when we get back. Also of Erinn and Mikes time together (tie-dye and hugging trees)!!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

New Adventure!!

My exciting new adventure actually began 2 months ago when I decided to run/walk the Portland Marathon.

At first I was reluctant as my knee causing problems again and I was reluctant to cause any further injury to it. But as I was continually being asked to do it and really encouraged by my over-active husband, I finally gave in and signed up.

At first knowing that David was so excited was enough to keep me going. I also enjoyed fellowshiping with the ladies on our long walks.

But as time moved on, I just kept coming back to why am I doing this, what is the purpose?

Our church used this marathon and the 5 guys doing it last year as a fund raiser to start their disabilities ministry. Now there is a purpose. Through the funds they raised, they sent some people to training and purchased supplies they needed for start up.

During my walk this week God gave me a purpose for my marathon training!!!

I will be walking/running to raise funds for Sarah's Covenant Homes!!!

This ministry has set up family-style homes for abandoned children (orphans) with special needs in India. Right now they are working to raise funds for another run of surgeries that some of the children need- These surgeries will be done in the next weeks. On top of this they are working on bringing a new set of children to the homes. All of this along with the everyday expenses of running their homes, God has placed them on my heart to run to raise funds for them.

Now I may be great on ideas at times, but the detail are usually a bit of work for me!! So right now I am asking that if you would like to sponsor me in the Portland Marathon (October 4) run/walk post a comment or email me at I will work on getting a meter to show the progress on the sidebar.

Thanks ahead of time for taking the time to consider this. It will definitely make working towards and finishing the marathon a more enjoyable experience for me and I will know it is going towards a good cause!!!

Weekend Happenings

I have not been able to get everything I need fully loaded onto the computer, so we are still missing pictures. Otherwise I would show you my wonderful new French door!!! Yep, we are in the modern age of doors and windows and past the plywood stage. I am loving it! It is funny to watch the dog go to the side of the door and wait for us to open the slider, instead of to the middle where they now open! Guess she will eventually get it. Also with the great insulation it is not overheating my family room every morning.

David and my Dad also replaced the knob on the garage door which had broken, worked on an electrical outlet, and fixed the door bell. Nice to have things back in working order. Now I just have to do touch up painting and clean up.

We also attended a work camp out with David's office. We just spent the day with them, but had a good time. I missed the pictures of fishing!! David threw in a line and caught a small bass which he let Caleb reel in, that brought all the kids under 10 running to get in the action. Soon there was David surrounded by little kids wanting to 'pet' the fish and 'catch their own. He was such a good sport. It was fun to watch him work with them all for about an hour. He is a GREAT dad!!

We enjoyed watching 'Fireproof' with Dad and Mike and Erinn this weekend. At least until the DVD player went on the fritz. I am getting afraid to touch anything, the way things keep breaking. And they are all expensive things!

Today I will try to get things organized from the crazy weekend (which went through Monday because David was off)! I will also start looking forward to planning for our long weekend at Sunriver. The 6 of us still at home will be together all weekend! Lastly I am working on a last details for a project God placed on my mind as I was on my 10 mile walk yesterday. I will hopefully post details soon.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Stretching Day!!

My day started with assisting our 90 year old grandma 'Mae' at home and the hospital.

Then I visited with David's parents in the Philippines and heard about Becky's minor toe surgery yesterday.

This evening I enjoyed Erinn's surprise as Michael surprised her with his presence!!! Yes, we were able to keep it a secret and she is overjoyed to have her Texas man here!

And I finished my night with Hannah peeing her pants standing outside my van as she said Oops!!

So I started with the 90 year old and ended with the 6 year old! All I can say is that I am glad there are not too many family members younger than Hannah!!! I'm ready for bed!

Grandma Questions

This morning I went to visit with Grandma and get some calls in regarding her hearing aids. The kids and I decided to run over (kids on bikes and me on foot) figured it would be a good 5 mile round trip for me.

When I got to Grandma's she buzzed me into the apartment and when I got there she had the door partially opened and I had to squeeze in by her. She was basically frozen in place and incoherent. I had to pry her hand off the door and physically walk her to a chair. She came around within a couple of minutes. But it was enough to get me moving!!!

After a call to get David out of a meeting to come pick us up (remember I had no car and two kids with me) I called the doctor and they sent us directly to the ER.

At this point they are saying seizure, not stroke, because she has no memory of it happening. So they are presently running tests and I am headed back over. Her daughter is with her now so I could come home and shower. Drew came and picked up the kids while I was in the ER with her, then came back to get me (too hot to run much at noon)!

I am so thankful that I was there. It sounds like she has been having smaller ones and we have not be picking up on them. Thankful David could get out of his meeting and come and help us. Thankful that the doctors office got me right to the doctor and she was able to direct us immediately. Thankful Drew was able and willing to come and rescue us. Thankful for medical care that is so available. Thankful for kindness of doctors and nurses with a frail 90 year old who was very nervous. Thankful for David's aunt who is able to give me breaks in care. God you are so very good to us!!

The Blind Side!!!!

Just saw this trailer on the Christian Alliance for Orphans site. WOW!!! I was crying. When she calls him "son" with such conviction it just moved me so much. And the end when she is told she is changing his life and she says 'No, he is changing my life'! WOW!! Hollywood can get somethings right. And I plan on seeing this one. Just wanted to get the news out about an 'orphan' story done right!!!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Be Thankful!!!

During David's and my phone conversation last night while he was away this little thought kept popping up "Be Thankful".

So today as I watched my husband come home from work after a close call driving--you bet I was thankful!!

When my son related the accident that happened to a friend while at the coast, and Drew's awesome response to the emergency--you bet I was thankful!!

And this afternoon as I was taking account of all the large bills and extra expenses this month and that there were 11 days to the end of the month--I must admit, not so thankful!! Embarrassing to say, but there it is.

So as I have continued with my day, I was blessed to hear the Lord whisper over and over to me--"you are in My hands"---"I have not forgotten you"---"I own all the world"---"cast those burdens onto Me"!!! What a peace surrounded me as I cleaned house and did school with the kids. Isn't it so good to know that our God is faithful, even when we are faithless!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Computer is In--Back is Out

Yep--The computer showed up today. Got it running, but I have no idea how to get the information from the external hard drive to the new one!!! Glad David will be home tomorrow to deal with that.

Back is still out, but doing much better. Thankful I can get around better today and that Caleb is big enough to help get the big bag of dog food out of the car and into the garage--Guess I am used to having big guys around the house!

Caleb wants to know why it is so important that he writes neatly on his papers!! This is after he could not even tell me what a couple of the number her wrote were!!! We found that he much prefers reading real information instead of stories. Yeah!!! Non-fiction here we come!

Hannah has slid back into some fear issues--Lots of staring and quiet talk. Need to keep up the positive reinforcement 24-7.

We are dealing with insomnia with Caleb. May try some Melatonin. Any other ideas out there? He will stay up for 1-2 hours after we put him to bed many nights. Then it is impossible to wake him up.

Had to laugh at the difference between boys and girls!! My friends daughter is calling at least once a day from their running camp--Drew only called to let me know that he arrived safely--which was a requirement since he was driving a van load of kids over!!

David is having a great group of meetings at his headquarters. He was asked to present his ideas to the executive board!! I am very proud of all his hard work!! He is also trying to take his running a little easier this week--showing that he does have some sense when it comes to running and his health too!!!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Goings On Here!

So we are still waiting for our computer. Should be in today!! Yeah!! Problem is David is out of town for a few days and I am a wimp about setting it up wrong. I will probably just stick with Erinn's laptop for a few more days.

The big news is we got BOTH PASSPORTS and all the documents back!!!! WooHoo!!! I am excited. For those of you who are unfamiliar with international adoption here is the info on why they were so important. Because David and I did not both go and pick up our children and finalize the adoption ourselves in Liberia, we had to readopt the kids here in Oregon the complete the process. When that was done they were issued Oregon birth certificates that state "certificate of foreign birth". We were also at this point able to get them SS #'s--an important thing!! Upon the re-adoption they were US citizens, but we had no documents that were acceptable to the government to prove that!! So our choice was passports or certificate of citizenship. We choose the passports because we have a liking to travel and thought they would be good to have just in case David got he itch for another cruise!! The problem is passports are only valid for 5 years for a child, so we will have to continue to renew them. I am just happy to see them for now!!!

With David out of town I had lots of good plans to get some big jobs done here!! HAHA! My back went out last night, so today ice and Aleve are my friends, along with the couch. Doing better this afternoon!! Praise God!!

Tried a new technique with schooling this morning. Let Caleb work with Hannah on numbers and they both thought it was wonderful. Caleb was beaming with pride and Hannah was grinning from ear to ear because it was so much fun. Think I might just get to like schooling this way---me laying on the couch with and ice pack and a book and Caleb doing the teaching!!!!

Should be a quite evening with David and Drew both gone!! Looking forward to completing The Connected Child. I am so thankful that I started reading it. The kids are really responding to the change in parenting, in just two weeks. Thank you Lord for the kind blogging friends who were not afraid to share their challenges and some of their ideas!

Praying God's blessings on you all today and Remember to Delight in Him!!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

What's Up?

Been trying to do a little blogging with the computer down, but I really like things to be normal. So here I am at my Mom and Dad's using their computer for the evening.

We are in Roseburg for the weekend to attend a get together of families that have children adopted from Liberia. I always enjoy our get together and the chance to talk to other families from similar situations. I will hopefully have pictures and a update next week with the new computer.

We enjoyed a play date with 4 other adoptive families on Thursday and picked some berries.

I walked 18miles yesterday in 4 hours and 9 minutes. Only one more long walk till the marathon!! YEAH!! David logged in 11.5 tonight in nothing flat. He is running like a crazy man right now and really enjoying the blessing of running, especially running fast--his face lights up like a little kid on Christmas morning!!!

We redid Hannah's hair this morning and afternoon--Note to self, do not leave twists in for more than 4 weeks, they start to lock!!! What a nightmare to get out!! She was quite the trooper though and now has cornrows that are very crooked because the lighting was so bad in the front room with our special plywood door!! New door is at the store now, just need to go get it and get it in.

Drew and Erinn will be heading out tomorrow for the coast with friends. Praying for safety and a good, fun time. Weird having the family go in two different directions for the weekend!!

Erinn has been painting her room today--grey! She will redecorate and move things around too, so we took down the over sized desk to give her more room! She is having fun doing it the way she wants.

We have been a week and a half with the new methods with Hannah and Caleb. Things are going real well. Seeing good responses in behavior and listening. Looking forward to long term results.

Danielle is still wedding dress shopping and I think is to the point of thinking that maybe this is not so much fun!! Too many choices, too much cost. Praying for the right dress for her. And for her sleep issues in her new housing arrangements.

That about catches us up for now--have a great weekend and remember to Delight in Him!!!!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

A Passport!

Yep, that is right, Caleb's passport showed up today!!! YEAH!!!!

Now we just wait for Hannah's, hopefully in a day or two!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Loving on Grandma

James 1:27
Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: To visit orphans and widows in their trouble...

So you hear a lot on this blog of the orphan part of this verse--Praise God they are orphans no longer!!!

But what you don't hear much of is the widow part, which is another facet of our lives. Since David's parents live overseas (see sidebar) we, along with a daughter here, have primary care of his grandmother, Mae. Overseeing a 90 year old has some similarities with the 9 year old in our house--LOL! You really are never 100% sure of what will come next with either one! Keeps life interesting.

I love having Grandma as part of our daily lives. Some days like today it definitely takes more time. So today I am praying for patience, as she does not hear well, so her information is sketchy. She is very unsure of herself, so I will need to do some interventions with insurance and hearing aids in the next few days. Praying for some answers with her hearing issues--whether we can improve her hearing or whether we have the best option she will be able to get--we just need to know. Helping her to understand what cards she needs for insurance purposes and find said cards if she has lost them.

All in all, just a little more leg work for a lady who is a wonderful example to me of contentment, kindness, and encouragement. Not much to give for what I give in return. Lord, help me remember that when I am tempted to be rushed with her.

New Outlook!!

I have been tremendously enjoying The Connected Child. It is like reading my children's stories. So many adoption books that speak on the hard issues only talk of the raging or violent child, this does not describe my children at all. They are on the polar opposite. Their issues cause them to withdraw and freeze. These responses also can make it seem like you are over exaggerating your issues because most people have a hard time seeing it.

One way or the other it has been a tremendous blessing to this mom's heart to glean from the fountain of knowledge found in this book.

But I must say after 4 days of intense practice of the parenting described in this book, I am exhausted!!! I never knew that looking for ways to praise my children in every situation, even in the most bizarre, would take all my energy. But my blessings seem to be responding!! Praise the Lord!!

Our school outlook for the entire next year has totally changed too. In fact, I have boxed up all our math, Bible, reading and language programs for Caleb for the coming year and am starting fresh!! I am excited about what God has planned for us in the coming year!

So to put it all in a nutshell--
--I am exhausted (I almost fell asleep on the floor while working with Hannah on her letters) LOL!!
--I am encouraged!!
--I am leaning on the One who loves my youngest blessings even more than I do!!

Monday, August 10, 2009


The Computer is DEAD--Crashed on Friday morning as we were getting reading to go camping for the weekend. David came down from the campground on Saturday to buy me a new air mattress as ours had gone flat and I was a little grouchy and sore from sleeping on the hard ground--While he was in town he surprised me and bought me a new computer too!!!! What an awesome man!! Now we just have to wait a couple of weeks for Dell to send it to me. So don't be looking for too many posts, as I have to steal Erinn's laptop to get it in.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Heads Up to a New Resource and Some Great Books

We are heading out camping for the weekend, so I stocked up on reading material !!
Actually, I am over half way in Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God by Francis Chan. And I am loving this one. Right where God has been speaking to me lately.

This book, Raising a Sensory Smart Child: The Definitive Handbook for Helping Your Child With Sensory Integration Issues by Lindsey Biel and Nancy Peske, is in response to the last posting on learning delays. Our speech therapist has suggested that this may be the next issues we need to tackle with both kids.

And this one, The Connected Child by Karyn Purvis has been on my wish list for months and I finally just broke down and bought it. She is the lady on the videos I have been recommending on attachment and trauma. You can find her new web site at this address I was directed to her work by a blogging 'friend' that though we have never met or talked, she has given me so much wonderful advise, you can find her here
Now I am just praying for a little quiet time for some good reading this weekend! Wishing you all a wonderfully peaceful weekend as well.

Education Thoughts

Education and the Special Needs Child!!!
This is where my thoughts have been much lately.
I have spent time seeking the Lord's forgiveness for judging others in the past.
I have been seeking to slay my pride in this area.
I have been seeking to start with an open heart and mind, to help my children find their full potential.
So I have been:
I have been on my knees praying for wisdom and patience.
I have been seeking counsel.
I have been researching.
I have been experimenting.
What have I learned so far?
BUBBLE GUM works great to relieve the stressed child and keep them focused!!
What works one day, may not work the next day!
And what is learned one day, may not be remembered the next day!
That joy can be found in VERY small accomplishments, that are way below designated age levels.
That I can smile and speak calmly when trying to explain the same thing for the third or fourth time!
That curriculum is meant to be changed often, even when you have not used much of the book!
Where do I see us going in the next year?
Possibly some specialized testing to help my teaching and their learning.
Possibly starting a support group for those homeschooling delayed children.
Definitely more research, more counsel, and more PRAYER!
How can you help?
Please remember not all special needs are "visible"!
Please remember that as their mother I am seeking the best for them and don't judge, because you do not know all the circumstances of their special situation.
Please be patient with them and don't jump to conclusions on their behaviors and interactions.
Please extend them grace and room to grow and learn!
What do I KNOW without a doubt?
That our God is in control, and bigger than any
auditory issues
sensory issues
or fear!!!
And He has a special plan for His special children!!

Racing Again

The night's "support crew"! Neither of my two younger girls like running very much. Erinn is highly competative though and will give anything she sets her mind to a good go. Hannah on the other hand, I do not believe owns a competative bone! She runs whining and crying! Makes you look like a good mom when you are running with her LOL!! So we will not be running any races for a while--kind of afraid of being turned in for child abuse because I asked my daughter to run a race!!
I did not end up with any good pictures of my husband running--got to figure out how to use the new lens. It was such a joy to watch David run this week! Due to the affects of his arthritis, running hard and pain free is not a frequent thing for him. But he loves running so much he will do it even when he is less than comfortable, in fact it is good to his arthritis for him to keep moving, so his bones will not fuze together!! Anyways, this was a very good week, his fastest this season! So fun to watch him enjoy the GIFT of running!!

Caleb was a grinning monster during most of his race!! Seems I have another one coming along who is extreemly competative and likes pain!!!
In this picture he is racing to the finish with his friend who beat him last week. I think he was determined to win--and he did!

Drew was pacing the rest of the guys on his team in a hard work out on this 95 degree evening (hence the lack of shirts!) This picture remindes me of duckings following a momma duck! I guess that is what being a leader looks like.

This picture looks like I knew what I was doing with the camera!! We all know that is not true and it was all luck!
But you have got to love this one! The blurry background and the SWEAT!!!

And my men at the end of a hard race! Now it may just be me, but it looks like they all enjoyed their pain and sweat!!

Monday, August 3, 2009

French Doors!?!

Our sliding glass door was finished! It was just about impossible to open or close anymore and we were just plain tired of fixing it-so we decided to put in new French doors! Like them?

Well when my dad showed up to help this weekend, David was still finishing the painting on the front of the house, so Dad went straight to take out the old door. Door gone!!

Then the two of them went to get the new door, which we had not purchased earlier because we knew you could pick them up in the home improvement stores and Dad had a truck to pick it up. Well the short of the long story is--there is a large rebate on the expensive eco-friendly doors that makes them the same price as the stock doors--BUT you have to order them and it takes 14 working days to get them!!!!

Hence our beautiful plywood door!! But they did set it up to 'slide' so we can get in and out, mostly to get the dog out to go to the bathroom!! It also keeps the raccoons out!!

The Rest of our Vacation!

Here are the pictures from the rest of our trip last week. After over 100 degree days in Southern Oregon, this fog and mist was a wonderful blessing. The water was freezing, but fun!

The kids found jelly fish right off the dock and thought it was extremely cool!!

And these sea lions were just sunbathing and swimming right off the dock and letting us just enjoy being so close to them in the 'wild'.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Happy 42nd Birthday David!!

Happy one day late birthday to my wonderful husband!!!
This is my favorite picture of him as a child!
A big city kid with a pet chicken!! The chicken had probably fallen off a poultry truck on the way to his demise, and was found by this little boy who wanted a pet! And here we are yesterday! Proud birthday boy with his new shirt and cake!
For his birthday he ran the Ashland Hill Climb! It is he highest elevation gain race, besides Pike's Peak Race in Colorado! A 13.2 mile race that gains 1 vertical mile in elevation!!!
He is a bit sore today! LOL! Drew also ran yesterday! Drew placed 18th overall and David was 24th overall. Congratulations to both runners! What a way to spend your birthday--paying someone good money for the opportunity to cause yourself extreme pain for 2 1/2 hours!! I must be missing something if they call this FUN!!!