Monday, November 29, 2010

Gearing Up To Read The Bible In 90 Days

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Here’s a question for you, have you ever read the Bible completely through from cover to cover? Is it something that you’ve started multiple times, only to somehow lose steam as you went along?  Me too.

Amy @ Mom’s Toolbox is hosting another Bible in 90 Days challenge, starting on Monday, January 3rd. The challenge will run through the end of March ~ and I am encouraging you all to join me by signing up here.

Interested? You can find out more {a crash-course if you will} about the Bible in 90 Days on Amy’s blog. I promise you it will be a life-changing experience! The official sign-up starts today ~ at Mom’s Toolbox.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving Day! 感恩节快乐!

Happy Thanksgiving y’all!

I can hardly believe that it is Thanksgiving.  This past month has gone by in a blur.  In fact, it was yesterday that Captain Daddy said to me, “So what are we doing for Thanksgiving?”

Our extended family is rather small.  Both of my parents are deceased, and so is Captain Daddy’s father.  We both have a few siblings.  I have to admit that our family has suffered much this year.  Captain Daddy’s Mother has had a chronic health issue that just can’t seemed to be resolved no matter how many procedures she has or how many doctors she sees.  Captain Daddy’s youngest sister is still recovering in a rehabilitation facility following an auto accident from August.  My oldest sister underwent a double mastectomy on Tuesday.

But through it all we are still thankful.  Thankful to our God that gives us each precious day.

So today, we are thankful for our family, friends, church, and church family.  We are also thankful for:

the warm weather that allowed us to cook/eat our dinner outside.

DSCN4754For our Thanksgiving dinner,

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macaroni and cheese,

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fried cornbread and chicken tenders,

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Cheetos, soda, and Texas Pete sauce,

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\bratwurst and hot dogs, and

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roasted oysters!

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I am thankful for these kids,

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…and this man that rocks my world

(and picks oysters out for me).

Happy Thanksgiving!

A Holiday Perspective

A Thanksgiving Perspective

感恩节快乐!

Happy Thanksgiving Day!

I came across this on another blog, Treasured Pearls.  I hope the original author doesn’t mind me re-posting this.  It just seems to fit so perfectly with my passion for children with no families, and my desire to bring more children into our family.  Just ponder these comments.

I am surrounded by food and feasts beyond compare,
143 million children are wondering if there will be enough to eat.


I am surrounded by friends and family,
143 million children are taken care of by government-paid workers or worse yet, no one


I am surrounded by advertisements beckoning me to purchase the latest hot merchandise,                        143 million children are digging through trash to find a thrown out pair of shoes to wear.


I am surrounded by grown men fighting over a brown ball and trying to move it 100 yards,
143 million children are fighting to survive another day on the streets.


I am surrounded by gridlock on the highways and in the airports,
143 million children are walking to the nearest water pond/lake/river to get water for the day.


I am surrounded by designer bottled water, soda, ice tea, coffee, and alcoholic beverages,
143 million children drink dirty water filled with parasites, diseases, and germs.


I am loved by God,
143 million children are loved by God.

 
I am surrounded by 224 million "Christians" in the US (
Adherents.com)
143 million children are "the least of these."

Matt 25: 32,40 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. ... The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Thankful

Friends,
As we reflect upon 2010 and upon God's blessings to each of us, I want to wish each of you a happy and blessed Thanksgiving. 

What am I thankful for?  There is much that I am thankful for.  I am thankful for each of you that follows my blog.  I am thankful for each of you that has a blog for me to follow.  I am thankful for my husband, children, and family.  I am thankful for my church and church family.  I am thankful to be able to homeschool my children and the homeschool co-op that we belong to.  I am thankful that my sister-in-law is recovering from an accident that occurred in August.  I am thankful for all that God does in my life.  But mostly I am thankful that God loved me so much that He sent His on begotten son to die for my sins so that I may have eternal life.  Because without that, this life wouldn’t mean much.

Enjoy your Thanksgiving day!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Thinking Out Loud

It is a beautiful fall day.  Captain Daddy and Godzilla are off on a Boy Scout camping trip.  There is much I should be doing, but I can’t seem to get the motivation.  I have dear friends in China right now getting ready to adopt a little girl.  I’m jealous with a godly jealously:)

I think about adoption a lot. Really, I think about adoption ALL.THE. TIME. 

There is a book written by Jeff Gammage titled “China Ghosts.”  It is about his adoption experience.  It is one that I can relate to, maybe you can too.  The adoption secret that is kept quiet until you have adopted a child is this, you don’t just bring a child into your family/home.  You bring home the countless faces of the children remaining in orphanages/foster care.  Mr. Gammage writes,

“They don’t tell you that the children of the orphanage are all coming home with you. That these kids, with their wan smiles and growling stomachs, are going to follow you across the ocean, move into your house, inhabit your dreams”.

Why is it that my heart would love nothing more than to bring another child into our home, but that for so many reasons it won't happen?

Why is it that any child would have to wait for a forever family?

Why is it so expensive to adopt a child?

Why is it that I can't get out of my mind the face of a specific little girl in China?

Why is it that I have dreams of adopting 2 more children from China (boy and girl) though that door is closed?

Why is it that I can't accept that the door is closed?

Why is it that God doesn't take this desire out of my heart instead of letting it torment me?

Why do I even think I can take on any more than I have now?

Why is it that I feel like I am in a desert, or at least Jockey's Ridge at the Outer Banks:)?

I KNOW it is God’s will to take care of orphans.  But have we done all that God has called us to do?  By “we” I am referring to my husband and I.  I know collectively, we haven’t.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Fabulous 30 Days of Giveaways!

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OK, you have got to go check out this 30 day giveaway over at Ni Hao Y'all !!!!  It is fabulous as is Stefanie!!!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

 

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A Prayer For Orphan Sunday, A Few Days Late

Dear Father,

On this Orphan Sunday, we join with Your people across our country and beyond to pray for orphans.

We know that love for these precious children begins not with us, but with You. You pursued us when we were wayward and alone. You adopted us as your children. You invite us to address you as Daddy and to live as Your sons and daughters. Truly, we love because You first loved us.

You tell us also that You are near to the downtrodden and destitute. Your heart aches for children that face the world alone. You champion the cause of those who have no one else to take their side. And You call us to do the same.

So we pray that You would rouse us to share your heart. We ask that You would stir Your people to passion and vision and action on behalf of children that have no family.

We lift up to You the millions of children in the world who have lost their parents to disease, to war, to addiction, to poverty, to abandonment. As You promise to do, place the lonely in families. Be their defender, their provider, their hope and peace. Help us to do the same.

We pray also for the five hundred thousand children in our foster system in America. So often, they are bounced from home to home, knowing little love, consistency or true nurture. Please be their love, their consistency, their nurture. Help us to do the same.

We confess that we have often lived with little regard for these precious lives. Please forgive us. Lead us to take up their cause, not in guilt or obligation, but as a joyful response to Your great love for us.

As we do, we pray that You would use our humble response to transform. To transform the lives of countless orphans both physically and spiritually. To transform us as we encounter You in them. To transform Your Church as we lift our eyes beyond our own comfort and self-focused religion to live out the painful beauty of the Gospel. And finally, to transform a watching world as it catches glimpses of Your love made visible through the actions of Your people.

We commit all this to You, the One who is both our Father and a Father to the fatherless, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen

 

Saturday, November 6, 2010

In honor of National Adoption Month

Chinese-a-Good-Wish

Natural Child: Any child who is not artificial.
Real Parent: Any parent who is not imaginary.
Your Own Child: Any child who is not someone else's child.
Adopted Child: A natural child, with a real parent, who is all my own…

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Halloween- Part 2

As I may have mentioned in my previous post, my kids love to dress up for Halloween and get free candy.  When Big Tuna was younger, his costume choices always seemed to be some TV/movie character or something “cool.”  We went through a series of Mighty Morphin Power Ranger costumes, Wolverine, Ninjas, Star Wars, etc.  He was pretty much a “store-bought” costume kind of kid.  I didn’t mind buying him costumes as he used them to play in all of the time.  I got my money’s worth out of them.

Not so with Godzilla.  He plans next year’s costume the day after Halloween.  Or sometimes a few days before this year’s Halloween.  He is always planning his Halloween costume.  His ideas are never in sync with current Halloween costume trends.  He is “off-the-shelf”  when it comes to costumes.  This started at a young age.  It probably has something to do with the fact that he became a fan of “Godzilla” at the young age of 2.  Let me tell you that “Godzilla” was not a popular costume option since about 1955. 

But that did not stop my child from being “Space Godzilla” when he was 4 years old.

Picture 001I had to create/sew a child’s “Happy Dinosaur” costume into a “Space Godzilla” with space crystals.  Don’t you love the “Godzilla Angry Face?)

Here’s a close-up.

Picture 002I was THAT Mom that had to explain this costume to everyone. 

In fact, I pretty much have to do that every year.  Do you remember last year? 

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You remember my son don’t you?  Dr. Gregory House?  House, M.D.?  Ah, now you remember.

This year was no exception.

halloweem10-10Easy, right?  Let’s see that is Belle on the left and Snow White on the right.  Who is that in the middle?  A tourist?  No.  Jimmy Buffett??  No.

halloween10-5Now do you get it?  No? 

Maybe this will help.

DSCN4704Okay!  Now you get it…sort of.  He is Poseidon, Greek God of the Seas, in his HUMAN form.  Otherwise he would blind you.  Yes, he passed out his “business cards” to everyone to explain his costume.  Sigh. 

We have read the entire Percy Jackson series, so Greek and Roman mythology are kind of big right now.  To help ease his pain, at the last minute I dressed up as Medusa.

halloween10-8Godzilla gave me a bunch of his toy snakes so I clipped them into my hair.  With hair like mine it is sometimes hard to tell if it’s curls or snakes.  My hair is like that.  Especially by the end of the day.

I have to say a special thanks to my dear friends who covered for me by taking photos of my kids, since I  left my camera at home.

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By the way, the kids really made a candy haul this year.  It was the first time that The Queen and The Princess have gone trick or treating.  Living out in the boondocks means we don’t have many houses to go to, and you have to drive to get to the other houses.  We crashed on my friend’s neighborhood where there is a high house-to-candy ratio.  Good candy!  I’m talking chocolate!  Full size candy bars.  Since The Queen doesn’t like chocolate, she put together a special bag of candy for me consisting of almond joys and M&M’s.

halloween10-2halloween10-3It sure beats scrounging around in The Princess’ bucket as it is quite sticky.  The Princess continuously takes inventory of her trove.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween 2010 – Part One

I am not going to debate the pros and cons of Christians and Halloween.  Just accept that my kids like to dress up in costumes and get free candy.  Other than that, I don’t really go all out with Halloween like some folks do.  I do appreciate that some folks like to decorate their house, not just for Halloween, but other seasons/holidays as well.  I am, on the other hand, what I consider decorating-challenged.  Or cheap frugal.  Or lazy overwhelmed.  I used try to do those things, but it isn’t my thing.

I digress.

We did visit a local church’s Pumpkin Patch with our homeschool co-op.  We even learned many interesting things about pumpkins and what they have in common with humans.  Just think about that one for a minute.

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We enjoyed games… 

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Story time…

 

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And pumpkins….Here are ours after a make-over.

DSCN4706DSCN4698  DSCN4699Aren’t they cute?  Oh, and the pumpkins are okay too!