Thursday, May 29, 2008

What's more impressive, her hair or her tongue!?

The AbFab Yolanta

The AbFab Katie


Smiles.
Sparkles.
Hope.
Love.

Oh Positive (O+)


There's no doubt about it. I am married to the most absolutely fabulous man alive.
I mean really...check out this email he sent from work:

Results

I’ve been doing a little research to see if there is a more wonderful women on
this planet than you. So far, I can’t find one. So I thought, what about from the past? Well, there were some pretty amazing women but really, not all that impressive when you stack them up side by side. But what about in the future? Could there ever be a person more awesome than my wife in the future? I did some DNA research and have proven conclusively that unless it is one of your daughters or one of their children, there is no chance.

Congratulations on being the most wonderful women ever to be created.

Ooohh the sappy love. It makes me do the happy dance and run to the store to buy big fat steaks and potatoes (his favorite dinner). Plus, his blood type requires that he gets a lot of red meat in his diet. Same with my daughter...is blood type genetic? I could be a vegetarian. I never crave red meat. I do like chicken though.



But I digress.


Where were we? Oh yes. Isn't my husband romantic!? And he's funny.


Does your husband ignite feelings of blood type related dinners?


If you have a romantic story or funny story that showcases your husband's wonderfulness, email me or leave a comment! I'd love to hear.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

2 Gifted Girls

Not sure how or why some people get buckets full of talent and creativity and others get, well, a couple of drops of the stuff. But, I'm sure that's how the world goes 'round. What would this place look like if we all knew how to do the same kind of things with the same amount of talent and skill? No one would have awe and inspiration or be moved by art, poetry or music the same way we are now.


My sweet friend Christa is dripping with creative goodness (I refuse to say juices because that grosses me out). I came to know her based on the fact she has a gorgeous singing voice. Funny, when Andrea, my friend from the 8th grade (happy birthday today), was getting married, she asked my husband if he'd sing a duet with her cousin Christa. The first time I met Christa was in our home studio listening her sing "The Prayer" with David. I fell in love with her voice and ultimately with her, and we've been friends ever since. That was about 8 years ago. As you can see from the picture, she's breath-takingly beautiful. She's the one in pink. hahaha. If you're new to this blog, she's the one on your left. The gorgeous one.

Anyway, you have to check her blog out because she displays some of the most beautiful handmade jewelery you'll ever see. I'm lucky enough to be the recipient of many of these absolutely gorgeous pieces. She has private shows where I often get discounted prices. But mostly she is so generous she just makes up reasons to give me personalized jewels. They are my favorite ones in my collection. The Christa Collection. That's her signature. If you look at that pic of me and my sis on the side bar, you'll see I'm wearing one of my treasured sets from her. Christa is, indeed, a treasured friend.
I heard a rumor that she is nearing the completion of opening an online store to display and sell her jewelry. Go to her webpage or contact me if you're interested in purchasing any of her fantastic, creative goods.

Another Girl I'd like to showcase is my dear friend Angela. She is another one of those highly talented people who, if you didn't know her, you wouldn't believe she could do all she could do. Murals, sand paintings, clay molds, photo albums, gosh, the list goes on. There are a million and one things I could say about her personality and kindness and friendship, but I'd be afraid you'd look her up and steal her from me, so let's just suffice it to say she's one of the best friends anyone could ever have. Neener Neener that I have her phone number.

One of the things she does is Glass Painting. She paints windows for banks and coffee carts when they want something fun like a wreath during the holidays, or pictures of coffee cups and summer scenes. She also paints ON drinking glasses. I know, sounds weird. But they are lovely.




In this silly pic, she's the one on your left. Another gorgeous friend! How do I surround myself with beauties? I'll give myself a complex trying to look as stunning as these girls. But those are thoughts better left for another day.




So anyway, check these babies out.



As you know, I have one biological white daughter, and I'm adopting two Haitian black daughters. Angela personalized these glasses to match my cute family.

Aren't they to die for!? My friend Hillory
adopted a Guatemalan daughter and a Chinese daughter and also has personalized glasses that her family loves to drink out of.
To purchase your own set of glasses or inquire about her other work, send me an email or leave me a comment and I'll hook you up.



So, again, the differing gifts that God blesses us with are what make friendships and life AbFab.I feel especially blessed to call two of the most talented ladies alive, my friends.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Hope and a Future



What do you want to be when you grow up?
My daughter wants to be (in her words) a Hair Styler.

She's been saying this for a while now. She had an AbFab beautiful babysitter when she was littler named Rachel who grew up to be a hair dresser. Amy loved Rachel and Rachel would curl Amy's hair, put make up on her and get her all dressed up. I think it was her who inspired this love of hair.



Last summer Grampy came over and allowed her to give him a haircut so she could practice her skills.

She's quite the girly girl.





When I stop and think about my dreams and aspirations for her, I hadn't considered her to be in Beauty School. Seeing as how she was figuring out equivalent fractions and reading choose-your-own-adventure books last week, I see her figuring quantum physics when she's older. But of course, I know that being an accelerated learner as a child does not necessarily mean she's going to want to do something wicked hard as an adult. Maybe hair and fashion is where she'll thrive.
And besides, MY dreams for her will not be the determining factor. It's HER dreams that will take her on her course of life.
I will foster her into a life of happiness, following Jesus and providing what she needs to be a successful adult...until she starts doing all these things on her own. Then her choices will determine her happiness, her walk with God, and her career life.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

She is only 6 right now. She may change her mind between now and college once or twice, I assume.



I pray for her future and ask God to bless the path she'll take. Will she be a missionary? Will she be a stay at home mom? Will she be a writer? Will she be a CEO? Will she be a farmer's wife? Will she be an athlete? Will she be a hair styler?







Whatever it is, and the sky's the limit, baby, I'll support you all the way.
"The mind of man plans his way, but the LORD directs his steps." Proverbs 16:9

Friday, May 23, 2008

May Picture of my Haitian Creations!

Aren't they the cutest girls you've ever seen!?


"Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west. I will say to the north, 'Give them up!' and to the south, 'Do not hold them back.' Bring my sons from afar and my {AbFab} daughters from the ends of the earth."

Isaiah 43:5-6

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Eat, Drink and be Gorgeous



I just got this book written by a gal with a ton of letters after her name. She's a dietitian and nutritionist and very witty. She has helpful hints and tips on how to eat, drink, have fun, be healthy, look good, find WMD's, etc etc etc.
I saw it in Fred Meyer one day and ordered it off Amazon as I was attracted to the cover. Yes, I'm that easy of a sale. Marketing works on me. And I took the flap jackety thing off for reading comfort and the actual book is even cuter. It's the opposite colors...black with splashes of hot pink! Reminds of my AbFab friend CJC.
I'll forward any good suggestions that everyone just HAS to know. If you see me walking around town looking gorgeous, you'll know it was a good purchase. Bah!
This is the novel I'm currently in the middle of. Unaccustomed Earth. -->
After reading The Kite Runner, it's a nice change into something a little lighter but staying with an Afghanistan mood. Very good. I forgot it was a compilation of short stories and it took me a while to figure out why she had a brother in the first story and an only child in the second. Ooops.
I took the cover off this book, too, and it's beige with a lavender bar. Almost identical to my Bible, believe it or not. So in the morning when I reach for my Bible, it takes me a second to remember which one it is. Weird.
Happy Reading!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Homeschooling Tip #3

Don't forget to have your children memorize scripture as part of the day's lesson or everyday living.

A huge focus on Amy's schooling is her understanding of who God is, not just book smarts or socialization. Although, it all goes together! After all, the Bible is a book. Being able to explain your faith to anyone is being able to socialize with anyone.



We have math lessons. We have spelling lessons. We have history lessons. We have Bible lessons. And we have lessons on being kind, sharing, serving Mom and Dad, serving friends, serving God.



Learning about who God is, means reading The Word and trying to live our lives according to what it says.



When my girls are older, my prayer for them is that 'whatever their hands find to do, they will do it with all their might' (Ecclesiastes 9:10). And I hope they remember that doing things with all their might means leaning on God for His support and His love. Knowing the scriptures early on will set a foundation for remembering them when they are older and will really need to rely on them.


Here are 12 verses that Amy is in the process of memorizing.
  • Ephesians 6:1
    Children, obey your parents in the Lord.

    Psalm 100:2
    Serve the Lord with gladness.

    Romans 3:23
    All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

    Nehemiah 8:10
    The joy of the Lord is my strength.

    James 1:2
    Consider it pure joy when you encounter various trials.

    1st John 4:8
    God is love.

    Proverbs 17:17
    A friend loves at all times.

    John 3:16
    For God so loved the world, he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in him will not perish, but have everlasting life.

    Proverbs 3:3
    Do not let kindness and truth leave you; Bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.

    Ecclesiastes 9:10
    Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might.

    Psalm 37:4
    Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will grant you the desires of your heart.

    Romans 8:28
    And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

I wish I had her AbFab memory. I'm memorizing them right along with her!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Tatertot Casserole and thoughts about cooking

Something about me: I don't really enjoying cooking. Nor am I very good at it. I can read a recipe, but sometimes I get stuck on simple-ish things. Like, how long am I supposed to stir this? Is this supposed to boil rappidly or lightly?

Nor am I very gifted at putting things together of my own concoction. I will open my fridge and my pantry and declare nothing to eat.


But there are people like my mom, or my brother-in-law, who could step up behind me, give me a thwump on the head, push me aside and voila...an AbFab gourmet meal.

How do they do that? I didn't even know I had half the things they found to work with.

I know it's my own fault. Ratatouille says it well "Anyone can cook!"I guess I should have tried to look past the potato peeling and chicken deboning when I was younger and gleaned more from my mother. A wonderful cook.

And I'm sure people are sick of hearing me say that I don't like to cook. I actually WANT to cook for my family. I wish I loved it! So just do it already, right!?



So I have been trying. I've been sucking it up, bucking up, praying, taking notes from my friends and my mother and just trying to get myself to be a better cook. I think it's working. I think God is doing something in me. I sometimes go backwards though and find I serve not enough protein or a boxed meal too often or complainy heart. But I bounce back up after a while. Usually the thought of my poor family wilting and turning a funky color from too many chemicals snaps me back in to shape!


I get better with every year I've been married. It's becoming more and more natural. And in my attempt to eat healthfully and provide good nutritious food for my growing family, I've been doing more research and coming across delicious things to eat. Plus, I would like all of my daughters to grow up with a love for cooking.

So I'm trying.

If you're looking for yummy recipes, you won't find too many here. But I'll throw in some tasty treats that we find ourselves enjoying now and then. I recommend SV and TB who have recently posted oh so good sounding dishes. It was TB who reminded m of this recipe when she recently posted about 2 tiny kittens she's fostering named Tater and Tot.




Here is a recipe for Tater-tot Casserole. I love casseroles. They're so warm and filling.




1 lb. ground chicken (or turkey or beef)

1 bag of tater tots

1 can cream of mushroom

1 can cream of chicken

1 can of evaporated milk


THE
TO-DO:
Preheat oven to 350
Brown meat, drain and cover bottom of 9x13 inch pan.

Lay tater tots evenly over top of the turkey.

Combine cream of chicken, cream of mushroom and evaporated milk, mix, then pour over top of the tater tots.

Bake for one hour.


It's easy to make and good tasting. If you like Tater-tots. Which I really do. But that's a secret not everyone knows. Until now.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Notes on Criticism

Definition from dictionary.com: noun 1.the act of passing judgment as to the merits of anything.


People criticise for many reasons; insecurity, fear, compassion, anger, expectation (and more)

How should I receive criticism?


  1. Ask God - Am I pleasing YOU?
  2. Affirm the truth
  3. Assume the best
  4. Address the critic - when the information is inacurate
  5. Avoid chronic critics



When should I give criticism?






  1. After I check the facts
  2. After I check my motives
  3. After I earn respect
  4. After I get permission
Proverbs 18:13 - He who answers before listening—that is his folly and his shame.


To hear the AbFab sermon by Pastor Paul full of Biblical text and from where I got these notes, click here and listen to May 11th.


Saturday, May 17, 2008

No.

This is not a cat blog. Because we don't have a cat.
We don't have two cats.

I did not take my daughter to a few garage sales today only to come home with 2 kittens.


Absolutely fabulous or Absolutely foolish?


Sigh.



But seriously, who could turn this girl down?

Thursday, May 15, 2008

My Dad = Photoshop Pro

So I guess when you're 6, all your teeth come out.
This girl is a walking jack-o-lantern!
We think she looks AbFab.





Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Amy Joy

If you know me, you know that I L.O.V.E. my daughter Amy.

I mean rrrreeeaaalllllyyyyy LOVE her.

Now, just so we are all on the same page, of COURSE I have a whole special kind of love for God that cannot be replaced by anyone. Not even Amy. And of COURSE I have yet another kind of love that I hold for my husband that no one can step in the middle of. And even though they are not here yet, I have another heart all reserved for my Haitian Princesses (insert prayer of immediate homecoming here).

So anyway, I am a mother. A mothers heart can do remarkable things. Indescribable things. Things that allow them to give alllllll of their heart to God, allllll of their heart to their spouse, and alllll of their heart to each. and. every. child. I can't explain it, but I know I don't need to. You understand.

Ok. So we're all on the same page that I can say things like I-love-my-daughter-with-all-my-heart without anyone fainting and whispering "(GASP!) Doesn't she love GOD? Doesn't she love her HUSBAND? What about her other girls!?"



Ok. Back to Amy. The only child I have had for 6 1/2 years. The child I love with all my heart.


I'm not going to get in to all of the things she has taught me about being a mother and what it means to love someone or that I now have a better appreciation for God's love for me.




For that is a blog for another day.

Her independence is really what I want to chat about. We are a homeschooling family and sometimes children who don't go to school can learn or gain or find or discover or whatever their independence a little later than children who leave the house without their parents every day.

This is NOT a comparison of Homeschool vs. Outside-schooled kids. Other than the fact I may make observations between my daughter and several kids of both kinds of schooling.





I think I am following my friend SV in the fact I am over-explaining myself. (love you, SV!)

Ok. Is anyone still reading? If you are, here we go!

My daughter seems to have an independence beyond her experience. And I don't mean that she wants to be away from me. I mean, she seems to be more mature than her handful plus one years of life would normally grant someone. She tends to be the leader in a group. Or the instigator for games and make-believe. That isn't usual for kids who don't go to school. Or have siblings! She's a great share-er and she knows how to relate to boys and girls, as well as kids older and younger than herself. It's a pleasant and at the same time slightly surprising character trait of hers. I mean, she doesn't get to practice those things at school or with her older/younger brother/sister. How does she do it? Where does that come from?

Oh freek. Now I'm worried that this post might sound like I'm bragging on my daughter. Well, please know my heart. I'm trying to pour out my soul about my love and discovery of my child. I don't have a prideful message and I'm not sinfully bragging.
(Here be the dangers of on-line journaling, I guess, right!?)



What I'm trying to say is, I am thoroughly enjoying and slightly mystified at the 'beyond her years' way about her. She sometimes seems to have a confidence I long for. A fearless way about her that denotes strength and security that I didn't know she was gaining. Learning. Finding.






She still needs me, she's only 6, for heaven's sake. But I ache for the looming day, only 12 years away, when she will leave me for the independent world. College. Boyfriend. Travel.


I am good at savoring every moment as I know "it all goes by so fast". But I still have an agony for the day she will be set off on to her own path. I have a hope that her paths' desire will align with God's plan for her life, yet a simultaneous twinge of despair that she will leave the dependency of her mother and take all that she knows -and has learned- and apply them to the big, bad? world outside this home.

Her independence now just seems to illuminate that inevitable, barely more than a decade away, mixed emotion day that she will, in fact, leave me.

But that's the goal, right? To train up a child in the way she should go...then let her go!



I feel secure, by the Grace of God alone, that we are doing what we're supposed to be doing to set Amy up to follow the right path when she's older. Of course there are things I wish I had done differently when she was younger, and I know I'll mother her incorrectly in the future. But maybe because I currently see her :

in love with Jesus
very well rounded
happier than anyone I know
well-behaved
brilliant
talented
and Joyful

that I get a glimpse of who she is going to be -- all--too--soon that I think upon such AbFab things as her inedpendence at only 6 years old.








I love you, Amy, with all my heart.




Except that it's not in the budget

On Friday Night, the refrigerator made a really weird noise. Then all of a sudden, I heard a POP sound. All three of us were in the kitchen at the time and we could see a slight filmy-smokey-ness billowing out! Then we were hit by this very toxic smell. We immediately opened windows, turned the fan on and grabbed the manual.



We bought this fridge about 5 years ago.

There was nothing in the manual to address the bizarre fridge behavior.

So David called Sears. They said it was the compressor and that it couldn't be replaced and we needed a new fridge.



So that night, while I went to an AbFab Phil Wickham concert, David and Amy went fridge shopping (Plus they ate Panda Express. One of their favorite places to eat when I'm not with them.) And wouldn't you know it, Sears was having a Mother's Day sale on all large appliances!

When we got home from church on Sunday, they were in our driveway ready to swap out the old, black, possessed fridge for the new shiny silver one!

There's something fun about a fresh new clean refrigerator!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mother's Day Surprise

New Info as of 3:00 this afternoon:
Katie's medical exams have been done and submitted and are with the dossier.

Yolanta's medical exam just took place today and the results will be in in about 2-3 days.
Once in, it will be added to the dossier (these medical results are the last thing needed for the dossier to be complete).
Once complete, it will be sent to the consulate for visa appointment.
We will give the consulate ONE WEEK to get a visa appointment scheduled. If after ONE WEEK we still do not have our appt, we will call Gordon Smith's office as it has been apparent that this is sometimes what it takes to get them to move along in a more timely, efficient manner.
Still hoping for May!


***Original Post***
David and I have been praying fervently for God to bring our girls home soon. We were sooooo hoping for Mother's Day.



My friend Hillory was praying that we'd leave for Haiti on the Friday before Mother's day so we'd be in Haiti on Mother's Day.



My mother-in-law sent me this note on the Monday before Mother's Day:



I want you to know that we are going to be praying especially hard (begging)
that you will be called to go get the girls by Mother’s Day. That means
this week – SOON – not any later. We will be begging God every day and I
will ask choir members to keep up their prayers. Also our Sabbath School
class. It is time for a prayer-in. It is time for Yolanta and Katie
to meet Amy and Daddy and to feel safe and loved and part of their forever
family. May this be one of the best weeks of your lives. Love, Mom




Well, as you know, Mother's Day came and went yesterday and we did not get the call to go get our girls.



We got home super late last night (around 11pm) and I saw on my answering machine that I missed a call from LeAnne, our adoption agent. No message, though. Then I looked on my cell phone and see that she had tried to call me there, too. Why did I forget my cell phone that day!?



Still though, no voicemail. No email.

David and I looked at each other and debated calling her. No. It's too late. Plus, she's in a timezone one hour later than us. It's after midnight at her house. Still....do you think it's important? Well, if it was, she'd have left a message. We went back and forth. Decided against it.



I figured she probably wanted to wish me a Happy Mother's Day since she knew I would be a little sad that that girls were not here with me.



So this morning, I called her back.



GOOD NEWS: Yolanta has her passport!!

Both girls have their passports!!



(She told me she's an insomniac and was awake after midnight and would have welcomed my call!)



Once the children have their passports, they can be scheduled for a visa appointment. And it's the visa appointment we are to be there so we can bring them home!



LeAnne is expecting an email later today to confirm the date of our visa appointment.

Please pray that it is super duper soon.



Everyone, I fully expect the girls to be here in May.



Dear God, thank you for hearing my prayer. Thank you for hearing the
prayers of my friends and families. I trust your timing and your plan. Thank you that it was Mother's Day that LeAnne tried to communicate with me that Yolanta got her passport. Weekend communication is so very rare. But God, You are absolutely fabulous and can bring miracles whenever you want. Thank you for blessing us with these children. Thank you for loving us. Please protect them with your heavenly angels. Please bring them home in May. Thank you for making me a mother to the three most wonderful girls on earth. I love you. Amen.




Rejoice with me!

And stay tuned for the appointment date. I'll update as soooon as I hear.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Super Zombie

I was having a discussion with my friend SV one day about movies.

"Oh, I haven't seen I Am Legend yet, is it good?" I ask.

She replies "Well, it's okay, but don't make the same mistake I did by seeing it with your dad. The movie is about zombies...talk about an uncomfortable situation to watch a movie like that with your dad!"

"Uh, well, actually, my dad's middle name is Zombie." I said.


My dad has always been a fan of zombie movies, the un-dead stories, monsters, old '50's and 60's horror movies (even the poorly made ones!) It's just been a thing he's always found fascinating. He's not a freak about them or have images of Chucky hanging off his keychain or anything. It brings him back to being a 10 year old boy. Which is, I think, the age he would go back to and stay forever 10 if he could.


He's also known as SuperDave where he works and they don't call him that for nuthin'!
My dad IS super.


Here is his absolutely fabulous reply after I told him about the Legend movie conversation I had:


"Thanks for knowing me so well. I bet you didn't know my middle name used to be -night-of-the-living-dead-, it was too long so I shortened it to Zombie.

SuperDave Zombie Lairson

Ps: Tell your friends I also rent out for the evening. Just Google search cool dad pdx for rates and availability. I specialize in weddings and extended family reunions. "
My dad cracks me up.




<---This is not my dad. This is my husband.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Vitamin C Smiles


Remember doing this when you were six years old!?


In this picture, my daughter Amy and her two friends Elisabeth and Cailin are all six years old.


I wish I had a picture of ME doing this because I remember doing it every. single. time. I ate oranges when I was six years old.


I usually had my twin sister with me to laugh our heads off while we tried to keep our teeth sunk into the sucked on fruit long enough to make it look like we actually had orange peel teeth.


Since my daughter is (for the time being) an only child, she has absolutely fabulous friends to be orangy with.


Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Temperature Love

A week or so ago, Portland had it's first hint at warm weather.

Usually by this time in spring we're:

  • Rolling down car windows

  • Exposing the need for pedicures by wearing flip-flops

  • Going for evening walks while oooing and aaahhhing over the warmth

  • Getting mad at the rain, convinced that it should be dry and hot even though spring is MEANT for rain. Especially in Portland. But still.
But we have been experiencing a very cool, for overcast, very chilly spring here in 2008.

Changing gears here for a minute or two. Continue reading.

David and I decided to switch two rooms in the house. You see, he has the bonus room upstairs for his computers, keyboards, bass guitars and all the home office-y stuff that goes along with paying bills, etc.

I have the actual office on the main floor that I use for homeschooling Amy, project managing for Good Catch Publishing and spending efficient time on the Internet. A-hem.

But at the closing in of our adoption, I will soon be homeschooling THREE girls instead of one. I need table space for projects, room to get on the floor for games, wall space for school posters, etc. My husband willingly offered to trade rooms as he saw the need for me to have the bigger of the two rooms. He knew he'd be squishy, but he'd fit in the smaller room.

So we decided to switch rooms on the first really warm day this spring. As we were going up and down the stairs moving computers, books, tables, etc it started to get super hot in the house. Or at least, WE started to get super hot in our body temperatures. So I turned off the heat and opened windows. Aaahhh refreshing neighborhood air.


The next morning it was rather cool in the house and I remembered that I hadn't turned the heat back on. But that's okay. David and Amy both run really warm-blooded (I'm always cold) so they like the briskness. They're one in the same when it comes to body temps.

Also, my husband left the corporate world and started his own business so we are alllll about saving money at every turn. Adopting 2 girls with a start-up company can be tricky. Do-able! Faith drives us most of the time. Yes, do-able. But tricky. So I thought we could save a buck or two by leaving the heat off for a while.



So, the weather has gone back to gloomy and cool. But our heater has stayed off. I can turn it back on at any given time, but I'm kind of enjoying these wear-socks/pull-on-a-sweater/my-hot-blooded-husband-and-daughter-love-it kind of days.





So here we come to the LOVE part.

On Sunday as I was showering and getting ready for church, I wrapped up in a towel and robe and opened the bathroom door that leads in to our bedroom.

David had closed the bedroom doors and turned on the gas fireplace! The room was super cozy and WARM.


Now, I should be hearing a collective "AAAaaaahhhhhhhh" right now because that was soooo super considerate! He has not said a word this whole time the heat has been off, but in his own special way he acknowledged that I have probably been cold. And he made a gesture that said he was thinking about me and what he could do to make me warm and happy.


I wasn't even really sure he knew that it was cold in the house. But he did. And he wanted to say I Love You to me in an absolutely fabulous way. 2 points for husband, right!?

Oh, what a guy.

(PS: That is not a picture of my bedroom. But it's sort of close. My bedroom is not AS fancy or sophisticated looking, but bigish and has the bathroom and gas fireplace right there like this one does) (Why didn't I post an actual picture of MY bedroom? Just shush up now and enjoy the very nice, very clean picture above, ok?)


Cinco de Mayo -- Chinese Style!

I've told you before about my Monday Night Prayer and Accountability Group.


So last night was Monday, and we were celebrating Hillory's 25th birthday! Or was it 35th? Doesn't matter. Anyway...



Her birthday was actually in April, and at that time she chose her birthday dinner spot to be PF Changs. It's one of the groups favorite places to go because the food and atmosphere and desserts are absolutely fabulous.



Honey glazed chicken. Garlic noodles. Keylime Pie martinis. Friends.



Does it get any better than that?

After we gorged, laughed, opened gifts and did more laughing, we went outside in the surprisingly yet wonderfully warm-ish weather and Donna points to the white lights strung up at the Bridgeport shopping area and says,
"Oooh, that looks so pretty! It looks so serene but also like it would be for a fun party....YOU GUYS! IT'S CINCO DE MAYO! We should be eating Mexican food, not Chinese!"

Oh well.
Rachel pointed out that at least we got seated right away (go figure!)

We'd stiiiiiillllll be waiting for a table if we went out to a Mexican restaurant.


Here's to Friends, Birthdays, the 5th of May and Chinese food!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Advertisement. Misbehavior. Beach.

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It offers everything your church could ever need and then some. It is quite literally, the best product of it's kind. There is a 30-day free trial and referral bonuses so go check it out. Really.



Okay, so my husband David is the owner of that company which makes it all the much more fabulous in my opinion. And a couple of weeks ago a pastor in Lincoln City signed up to start using the product. David gets a grand idea during the week to leave early on Sunday morning and attend that church! His product is global and I don't know why he didn't suggest we go to a church in one of the more exotic locations, but whatever. I like the Oregon coast.




So we get up early on Sunday morning, pack our bags for a day trip and head West. We walk in just a couple of minutes past starting time and hear the tune of a familiar hymn being sung as we sneak in towards the back.




If you've been a church-goer most your life, you'll probably agree with me that being in a church just feeeeeels good and homey.




Okay, so this tiny church is just that. Tiny. There are 34 people in the sanctuary including Pastor and the three of us. It's also old so the floor boards announce our presence and pretty much everyone has by now seen the city folk trying to discreetly settle in to a pew.




Stay with me here.



It was communion Sunday and I don't know what happened to me, but I got the giggs. That is, I started to giggle a little here and a little there. Nothing serious and very under control, but something was making me silly inside.



We allow our 6 year old to take communion as we have explained it to her and pray with her every time. Okay. So the three of us on are this end of the pew, and at the opposite end of the pew sits an old couple. There are about 4 body spots in between Amy and the old lady at the end.



The usher hands David the bread plate and he takes a piece and hands the plate to me. I take the plate and offer it to Amy to take a piece. I am still holding on to the bread when I take the juice plate with my other hand. I have no hands left to take bread or cup for myself.



Have I never done this before? I have, but I think usually Amy is sitting in the middle of me and David and that magically makes the process work better.



So I whisper to David to grab me a cup and he gives me a look like "Why are you making this complicated?" So I flash him a "Fine, never mind" look and stretch over my daughter balancing both bread and juice and let the shaky-old-lady hands take it from me. And while she has them both in her hands, I quickly take my own bread and cup.



I settle back down in my spot and look over at David who is holding TWO cups of juice. Amy has one. I have one. We now have four cups of grape juice for the three of us. I give David a look of "Why are you holding two?" when he whispers in an irritated way "YOU TOLD ME TO GET YOU ONE."



I start to chuckle through my nose at the sight of my husband with a cup on each knee.


I compose myself and, so you know that I am not totally sacrilegious, I talk and pray with my daughter about the meaning of communion, then I have a moment by myself with God.





Bringing my head up from having been bowed, I look over at my daughter sitting on my right as she is dunking her bread in her cup!



I lost it. I started cracking up. It took everything inside me not to let out a loud guffaw! But then Amy puts the tiny square cracker thing in her mouth and looks up at me with this disgusted look on her face and mouths to me "It's GROSS!"

Okay. Maybe Amy's too young for communion.

And I am uncontrollably laughing.

Then, my husband drinks his one cup and quickly downs the second. That sent me over the top! I was laughing sooooo hard I had to put my face in my hands and lower my upper body so as to try and conceal my hysteria as best I could!!!

David started whispering words to me (none of which I heard) but I DID notice he too was having a hard time controlling his laughter.

Oh my.


Well, I was too embarrassed to look around to see if anyone was watching us, but I'm sure the people behind us saw my shoulders shaking the whole time! Maybe they're better Christians than I am and they had their heads bowed and eyes closed the whole time. Please Lord.

Well, all that was done and I was able to keep it all bottled up inside the remainder of the service. Phew!

And the super neat thing, is that I believe God gave my husband the idea to go to that church yesterday because it just happened to be the very Sunday that the Pastor introduced the website to his congregation! It was absolutely fabulous to be there and hear how excited this Pastor was to have a website and to hear him encouraging the people to go to it.


We introduced ourselves afterwards to the Pastor and he was thrilled to have us there.

We enjoyed a wonderful time on the beach and of course, Amy asked if we could spend the night. David said "you know, we don't really have the money for that. We'd have to have like a super 1/2 off special of like $50 bux in order to stay here."

So we climbed up the stairs off the sand and started walking towards our car when David said "Oh my gosh, look at that." And right there on the window of the first motel was a sign that read Tonight only. 1/2 off special. $50.

I don't know about you, but I think that was pretty spectacular and a gift from the heavens!

So we bought a toothbrush, hunkered in for family fun in the motel, stayed the night and came home shortly after breakfast this morning.






It was a wonderful weekend filled with family, laughter and blessing. We gave thanks for everything.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Blogtarded

So, I didn't make any setting changes but the comments field disappeared.
Don't know why. Don't know how to fix it.

**Yay! Comments are back. Phew! I didn't want to miss out on all your lovely thoughts.

(Don't ask me how or why they went away and all the things I did to get them back. It was a work in progress of trying everything and re-saving settings, etc. I even messed around with the HTML, which gave me an appreciation for my husbands job!)

Happy commenting.

Benjamin Blaise Harris

Most people know that Sean and Jamie adopted Benjamin, who is the little brother of my Haitian daughters. If you didn't know that before, well now you do.

We had them over for dinner last night and it was so much fun!

Here is a picture of Jamie and Benjamin in Haiti when Jamie and I went to visit the kids 16 months ago.







And here is a picture of him last night.




He'll be two in July.

Did having the Harris' here last night make me long for my girls? You betcha! And it also made me trust that God's timing is perfect.

Sean brought an absolutely fabulous video of his trip to Haiti to pick Benjamin up. I had sent pictures and toys with him to give to my girls and I got to see them at the orphanage holding the gifts. They looked straight in to the camera and I could see through the TV screen and into their eyes and I just know they want to come home.

Soon girls. I promise.

Here are some more pictures of last night.

Their two daughters are Mackenzie and Meghan.