Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Did The Littles Ski?

While they technically did not ski, they got out in the water with daddy and tried the wakesurf.  

Let's count it!
 Little A holds the rope
Notice her thumbs up.

Little J braved the water, too.

 but because of her position on Jon, two times, they submerged.  Little J was very courageous but came into the boat because "daddy put water in my eyes".  Maybe next time.
A cold, serious little mama's girl climbed back into the boat for snuggles and I was happy to oblige. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012


After all the practice The Littles have endured in their life jackets around our backyard, we finally had the real deal. We went boating for a few hours one hot evening and the girls loved it!

Thanks Chad and Chris for inviting us along! So fun!

Tune in tomorrow to see if Daddio's ski school paid off.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Dancing the Night Away

The sun shone down on the serene meadow, where our friends, Adam and Jenna committed their lives together.  

While this post is about a wedding, it is also about a personal victory for The Littles. As The Littles still are apprehensive about large crowds and new faces, before events and outings, we prep them thoroughly, talking through who we will see (looking at pictures if we haven't seen someone in awhile), what we will do, what food we will eat, etc.  This ritual has helped us immensely, although sometimes there are still freak outs and melt downs. We also explain it is safe and we won't leave them. We even practice saying "hello" to people, shaking hands and verbally have them tell us they will be friendly.

Apparently, this prep before this wedding must have been stellar and possibly over the top.  The Littles thought that Adam and Jenna's party was so much fun and all about them enjoying the happy couple, they would sneak away to find Adam and Jenna, regardless of what the busy bride and groom where doing.  

When it was finally time to release The Littles to dance, they found Adam and Jenna and said, "dance with me!". 
This is the first dance that the floor opened up for everyone to dance.
When we laid down the rule that they had to give the bride and groom some space, they danced together, watching them the whole time.

As the night wore on, The Littles were more enamored by this whole wedding deal.
Me: "Hey Little A, come with Mama and we'll get some cake!"
Little A: "No, I am just gonna find Adam and we will dance together."

Adam and Jenna graciously handled the affection and open admiration as Jon and I sat back, praising God for their increased comfort in a new social setting.

Adam and Jenna, we wish you God's blessings as you begin your life as one!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Coping Skills

When some people feel overwhelmed or behind, they go in turbo mode. Me, I look at everything ahead of me and want to curl up into a ball. Life has been super-fun lately, with VBS and new adventures but then I can feel guilty I am not attacking my to do lists!  

In really good news, Jon and I are official SIM Personnel.  Which is a cause for great rejoicing! It means we have our field placement.  However, I am currently learning communication guidelines as much information is sensitive and because the internet is the internet, I don't know how much I can say. Please know a post is coming, as soon as I nail down the appropriate words. 

Feel free to ask us!

One day after VBS, we went for a swim at a friend's pool! So wonderful in this hot, hot week!

Farmer Jon learns more each day. We are blessed to work with Maple Creek Farms.
 You know he's a real farmer, see look, he's got a piece of straw in his mouth (that may or may not have been put there for staging purposes). 

Hope you are having a happy June!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


Our VBS is raising money for bicycles for national missionaries through Gospel Through Asia. (  

One family had a very creative business plan this morning.
We just may end up with another kitten!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Day For Daddio

To celebrate Father’s Day, I was going to take pictures of The Littles for a project. The infamous “cheese” face did not make it easy. 


Instead, I found an idea from another blog and asked The Littles questions about Jon.  Here are their unprompted and unedited responses. Little A in pink, Little J in green (Little J was not a willing participant).

1. What do you love most about daddy?

J: Run away (game of chase me)

A: Big muscles! He snuggles me

2. What is your favorite thing to do with daddy?

J: Run away!

A: Run away, turn off the lights and daddy say “hey!”

(Another game, they turn off the lights, Jon acts surprised)

3. What do you do that makes daddy happy?

J: Don’t disobey

A: Don’t disobey

4. What does daddy do that makes you know he loves you?

J: When he say no/I want to hold daddio

Translation: when he holds me

A: He says, “good job”/ he make me smile

5. What is daddy’s job?

J: He go to Babylon

A: I don’t know

(No idea where this one came from)

6. What else do you want to tell daddy?

J: Daddio! Long string of jibberish

(a game they play with Jon, speaking in nonsense words)

A: I go poopy, daddy. (I thought I was smelling something…)

(No idea where this one came from)

And a few more pictures from our session, we had a few keepers…







We love you Daddio and all three of us think you are the best!

Friday, June 15, 2012

So Much Movement I Could Burst!

Their journeys we have followed closely, rejoicing in completed dossiers, referrals, court dates and embassy submissions. While we have many friends and acquaintances in the process, I just have to SHOUT for joy at the recent movement among these dear families!

They could also use your prayers.  The whole families, the parents, the kids already in the home and the new son or daughter.  Sometimes, it seems that the end of adoption is when your child is finally in your arms.  While in some ways this is true, the process is over and the heart fills with much thankfulness and relief, it’s really the beginning.  The adoption is complete, the title of son or daughter doesn’t waver but it is the beginning of healing a life that has faced varying degrees of trauma, attaching and restoration in heart of a little one who is leaving everything they know. Most times, amidst the beauty, it’s messy and hard for everyone involved.

Jon and Beth just received confirmation of their embassy appointment and are scrambling to get on the plane!


David and Larisa also just received confirmation and are in the same spot. Within a few short weeks, their son will be home!

book 2

Michael and Mindy are also soon boarding a plane for their embassy date.

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Jeff and Sarah are meeting their son for the first time and attending the courtdate.

(Sorry, no pictures to post and I can’t find their blog)

Let’s pray for these families and praise God for His goodness!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Fruit of the Earth

First, meet Graby, Tiger and Purr II.  They are sweet but not as smart as Meow and Purr. Like today, when I walked outside and found all three of them stuck in a tree.


And now…drumroll please…RADISHES from the garden. One umimpressed sigh from you (you had radishes weeks ago), one HUGE victory for our family garden!

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And because The Littles were so exuberant they just pulled something from the earth…

Radishes 033

They ate a vegetable voluntarily!!!

Yesterday, Jon asked The Littles. “Girls, what do you think we should farm?” Little J enthusiastically responded, “Pink!”

So, we are bound to be profitable pink farmers. ;) 

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A Bit Of Perspective

When people hear of our future plans, it isn’t uncommon they mention, “Oh, we know someone in Zambia or Senegal fill in the blank, you will have to hook up with them when you move.”  ;) 

Just to bring a little perspective…

This is a map of Africa.  Ethiopia is in the orange.

ethiopia map

Photo credit

Now here is where the perspective comes…


Photo taken from 

Isn’t that incredible?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Maybe The Last Time?

When they were younger, the “spider swing” was the perfect solution to only one swing at a park. 

spider swing1

Oh my. Flashback. Check out the rest of their park pictures at 11 months.  Melt my heart.

Last night we resurrected this trick…

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We didn’t have much wiggle room this time!

A few other pictures from our adventure at the park:


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Happy Monday!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Now What?!?

Purr and Meow (Read about Purr and Meow, here and here and here) were lost a few weeks after we got them.  It was a very sad realization in our house as day after day passed and they still didn’t show up. We checked with all the neighbors for our two black, fluff balls. No one had seen them.  Fast forward a few months…

Time passed and Nana brought us a fun delivery…


4 kitties!  (Already down to 3:( )


But they are sweet little kitties.  However, there’s a problem.

Something is messing with them and at night!

This realization brought out my Mama Bear and it was the motivation for why I was out in the dark last night, baiting a trap for the culprit.

I worked as fast as I could (trying to remember how I was instructed to set it) I heard loud rustling from the edge of the woods. Something was watching me.  Maybe a bear?!  (Okay, it could never have been a bear in our area but my imagination in the dark does not lack drama).

I came in and told Jon that I was going to catch something. He laughed and maybe rolled his eyes a bit encouraged me.

The night passed. After I got out of the shower this morning, I went outside to check the trap and what to my wondering eyes should appear but…

raccoon 010 

AAH!  I caught something! 

I was immediately giddy and felt mostly proud of myself. I mean, this wasn’t even on my list of survival skills!

I am woman, hear me roar! No one mess with me and my kittens!!!

My victory dance was cut short as I looked at it and  I remembered why I couldn’t ever be a hunter. This poor raccoon was scared silly and had been digging all night and made many attempts to escape the cage.  Oh no.  What if it is a girl raccoon????  What if she is a Mama and her babies have been scared as the night passes, going hungry in a tree somewhere?

I almost let it go on the spot but didn’t want it to eat our kittens.  She was released a few miles down the road in another woods. 

I don’t think I am going to run a trap line in the near future. ;)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

One More Step Towards Granola

See that baby chick?


Yep, it’s ours. Along with 19 others just like it.

That total doesn’t count the cages of “layers” that we just got.

Yes, yes, we are doing this farm thing and learning lots of lessons along the way.  Jon wants to learn small-scale chickens as a possible business route in Ethiopia.

I received a list of needed/helpful skills for the field.  It looks like I better get busy, I need to learn how to:

-Drive a stick shift



-Read a map (No GPS? YIKES)

-Cook completely from scratch

-Butcher meat (Jon plans on learning this one)

Please, don’t mind the chickens in the yard. (Actually, we think we will put them at my brother’s farm and not my grandma’s backyard)

When we start milking our own cow by hand, someone please stage an intervention.

Scrambled eggs anyone? :)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

A Warm Welcome

Daddy coming home is a much anticipated event.

Jay Jay 022 Jay Jay 024

Jay Jay 027

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The Littles usually have his evenings scheduled with “chase me”, under doggies and hide-n-go-seek.