Thursday, December 20, 2007


Through my work for Love Without Boundaries, I see pictures of orphaned children in China nearly every day. They are all so precious and since the children in my foster care program are all special needs, they each have overcome great odds to be where they are. Sometimes, though, there is one special child who grabs my heart and causes me to root just a little bit harder for him or her. Currently, that special little one is Nicholas.

Sweet little Nicholas is not yet a year old and he is not destined to live to be very old. He was born with a congenital heart problem that is so severe that it is inoperable. He is in palliative care through LWB and Hope Healing Home in Beijing.

I receive reports on the children every other month and each time, I eagerly open Nicholas' first. He is always smiling. This little boy has such a joy about him. He looks at me though his photo and I can almost imagine him winking at me. His adorable smile seems to say, "Look at me! I have been given another day and I will choose to spend it happily!" He doesn't let his heart condition hold him back from enjoying each day. He has much to complain about, but he chooses not to.

What an inspiration this little boy is to me! He did not have the privileges that I have been be born to parents who had the means to care for be born in a country that would have been able to pay for the health care he needed. He doesn't know what it feels like to take a breath without struggling for it, or what his skin would look like if it wasn't a deathly blue pallor. He will probably never have the strength to run and play like the other children. And yet, little Nicholas' life is so full of joy and purpose. His life speaks volumes to those around him as he teaches us to be thankful for our health, our families, and our material blessings. He teaches us to care for those who have no parents and those who have special needs. I have heard many people ask why a loving God would allow such suffering, but when I see the results, I can see that suffering is never capricious or purposeless. Each time I speak to someone who is assisting a child or person less fortunate, I can't help wondering who is being blessed more...the person being helped, or the person helping. The sparkle in the eyes of the helper, cements the belief that giving brings much more happiness than receiving. We are given the opportunity to live outside of ourselves and GIVE hope and support and I believe that God also gives extra peace and comfort to those who are suffering.

Thankfully, through foster care and a very dear woman who is willing to give her heart to orphans that are dying, little Nicholas DOES know what it feels like to have arms around him. He DOES know what it feels like to have someone love him.

Thank you, Nicholas, for letting your life be an example for the rest of us...for letting your shining eyes tell us of your great spirit and will to live joyfully in the face of incredible odds.

Monday, December 17, 2007


What do Midwesterners do when they get a lot of snow? For those of you who live in warm climates, I thought I'd put a few pictures on the blog. Church was cancelled yesterday and today school is cancelled, so the kids have been having fun in the snow!
First, the men work on the snowblower for hours trying to get it started, and when it does....This is Ryan handling the snow.

Little brother, Jordan, watches Ryan and Daddy from the window. The snow is too deep for Jordan to play in.

The girls played in the big piles of snow that Daddy shoveled after the snowblower quit working AGAIN.
The girls came in all bedraggled and freezing cold... ...and decided to play dress-up instead.
Taylor takes a break in front of the fire...

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Our budding actress

From the day she has been in our arms, SaraGrace has put all of her considerable acting talents to good use. She has always cracked us up. In fact, as I was starting to type this, she stood next to me with notebook and pen and asked me, "What is your name, my dear?" in her most theatrical voice.

The kids have been watching a Little Rascals movie lately (over and over ad nauseum). There is a scene were Alfalfa, Darla (the girl he is 'sweet' on), and an interloper boy are all involved in a talent show. Both boys are trying to impress Darla. Molly loves to sing and I heard her singing the song the other day. It sounded like SaraGrace was also involved so I peeked around the corner. SaraGrace was imitating Darla and Molly was singing to her. They wouldn't do their 'act' while I was watching, so Jillian taped it for me. I uploaded it to YouTube if you want to see it. It's a bit rough--Molly was mumbling the words because she was embarrassed, but SaraGrace's dancing is hysterical. (At least we think so!!)
At least they weren't tobogganing down the stairs on a crib mattress today....

Sunday, December 09, 2007

We have had two birthday's since I last wrote...Little Miss Chloe turned five and a few days later, Jeff turned 48. Since our kids--led by Molly--love the Red Robin jingle (ie: Red Robin....YUM!), we decided to try it out for Chloe's birthday. Grandma and Grandpa joined us and I think everyone had fun. :)

I am trying to adjust to the cold weather and having the kid's inside all day. They have so much energy and sometimes they just need to run. It makes for a very LOUD household on the days that they cannot go outside to blow off steam. Today is one of those days--it's freezing rain outside. Earlier today,they tried riding a crib mattress down the stairs--hmmmmm. I guess sliding down in their sleeping bags lost it's luster from the other day. Thankfully, no one got hurt before I put a stop to it! (I remember as a kid telling myself that someday, when I had kids, I WOULD let them slide down the stairs in sleeping bags...haha)

We are in full swing preparing for Christmas. The kids are soooo excited! SaraGrace wanted to know what the fuss was all about--was it someone's birthday? We said, 'Yes, it's Jesus' birthday!" She looked at me seriously and said, "For real or for fake?"

For real.

Jesus really DID come as a tiny baby--not with trumpets announcing a King. He came quietly and not many knew. But now we know...and we celebrate with grateful hearts.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Our 25th Annversary

Today is our 25th wedding anniversary! How is that possible?! We are amazed at how fast the years have flown by. God has been so incredibly faithful to us all these years and we are so thankful for the ways He has blessed us!

Never in our wildest dreams would we have thought He would take us to Oklahoma, China and Guatemala for our children--or that He would take us there so many times!! We are so grateful for all He has done for us.

Thought you might get a kick out of these wedding pictures...we sure did! Our kids have looked at them over and over the past few days and decided that we looked 'wierd' back then. :) I'm sure the circa 1982 "Princess Diana" bridesmaid dresses will take you back. ha.

And now....

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Family update

Time continues to slip by me and many of these blog entries are written in my head and then never make it to the blog. Oh well....

SaraGrace has had a birthday since I last wrote--how can she be FOUR already? That morning, she came downstairs in a Chinese silk dress, several sizes too big, and announced that she would be the wearing it in honor of her 'happy birthday.' She actually wore it all day, which is remarkable since she normally has more wardrobe changes per day than a Hollywood starlet. She celebrated in true SaraGrace style--big smiles and lots of exitement (aka: drama).

Jeff and I recently stumbled onto a TV show called "John and Kate plus Eight." It follows a real family who has eight children, a set of twins and a set of septuplets. Jeff says he loves to watch this show to see chaos in other people's homes. haha The father is Korean and the children all look Asian, which makes the show much more endearing to us. We noticed that the TV crew only seems to tape the family getting ready to go on an outing--as well as getting ready for the outing. We crack up at this because we mostly stay HOME because taking the kids anywhere is such an undertaking--partly because it is hard to keep track of everyone and we are constantly counting heads. However, we did feel a bit inspired to take them somewhere once in a while.

We live in a small town that has a Christmas event in early November. They have a Christmas walk and all the little shops are open, and the shop windows are decorated for Christmas. At 7PM, they light all the trees lining the main street. It's a fun event that we missed last year because we were just home from China and totally jet-lagged. So off we went to this year's event. We counted down out loud with the other townsfolk for the 7PM lighting, and walked around looking at the Christmas displays. We finished up with some wonderful hot chocolate at the Daily Grind and then one more peek at the Doll Cottage before heading home. Our big boys opted not to come and poor little Jordan had to stay home because he was sick. I had forgotten what a novelty our family is when we all go out together. Too funny to hear the comments of some people whose depth perception is a bit off and think we don't hear them. "Why look at that, Martha...they have two sets of twins and a baby boy." HUH??!! Jake's first time in winter clothes, which make him as wide as he is tall.
"Mmmmm...Yummy hot chocolate"

We were on a roll, so later that weekend when Ryan asked all of us to go bowling, we thought we'd give it a try while the little boys were napping. Taylor stayed home to babysit and we all headed over to the bowling alley where they were having a smoke-free day. What a hoot! The girls had their own bumper lane and they actually did pretty well. SaraGrace was the queen of spares because somehow, she always managed to hit those few remaining pins and knock them over. She would then jump up and down squealing, "YAY!!! YAY!!!" There was a teenage girl next to us who told her boyfriend to make sure he watched her when she 'bowled." Jeff and Ryan were slightly mortified at our girlish enthusiasm, but we girls had fun jumping up and down and cheering for each other.

Now all the kids have colds so I guess we will stay home for awhile and not share the gift of germs with anyone.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Gotcha Day, Jordan!

It's hard to believe that one year ago today we walked into the Civil Affairs office in Taiyuan China. We went up the stairs and into the same room where we received SaraGrace the year before. There, sitting on the couch, were two sweet little boys waiting for their new Mom's and Dad's. They were dressed alike and looked very scared at what was happening. They were both quickly swept up into the arms of their new parents, and new lives were started.
Jordan, with Mommy and Daddy in China

Caleb, with his new Mommy and Daddy in China

One year later, Jordan is blossoming. He is still a quiet little guy with a huge appetite, but he has started talking, building amazing block structures and riding a bike with training wheels. He is a wonderful big brother to little brother, Jake, and a sweet 'baby' brother to his doting big sisters.

Happy Gotcha Day, sweet Jordan! You are a blessing to our family.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Jakey is taking his first steps!

Our tiny little guy is starting to take his first steps! It is so cute. He grins at all of us first before he starts. I think we are getting him too used to having an adoring audience to cheer his every accomplishment. haha He first looks around to make sure everyone is watching and then with a big grin, starts off. He takes the smallest steps I have ever seen a baby take. It is so funny. He also takes the fastest steps I have ever seen--much like the way he crawls--in hyperdrive. He has such tiny feet, I don't know how he can balance himself on them.

He will look so funny when he is walking full time because he is so small. He is only wearing 9 month clothing but he has a full head of hair which confuses a lot of people who try to guess his age.

He has added a new word to his repertoire..."yuck." He can say Mama, Dada, Uh-oh, and yuck. ha Whenever he has a poopy diaper and I start to change him, he says, 'Yuck." Hmmm...I guess I must say that more than I realize!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Happy Gotcha Day, SaraGrace!

Two years ago today, the most adorable little spitfire was placed in our arms. She was none to happy about it at first, but before very long, this amazing little fighter embraced us with the same tenacity that had helped her survive her first year of life. The only reminder of that difficult first year is the scar on her chest from her heart surgery. She has brought incredible joy and fun to our lives and quite a lot of mischief!

Happy Gotcha Day, SaraGrace. You are forever treasured.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Brief update on baby Sinh

I don't have a whole lot to report, but Sinh is currently undergoing tests in a French Hospital in Hanoi. They are not very optimistic, but they are giving her some medication to strengthen her and her heart for the surgery. The adoption agency director said, 'I think we are running out of time. Please keep her in your prayers."

Thursday, September 27, 2007


I still do not have any update on Sinh. I will post as soon as I hear something.

Yesterday, a dear friend of mine, Amy Eldridge, posted a story on her blog. She is out of town so I can't get her permission to paste some of that story here--but I do not think she will mind. Amy is the founder of Love Without Boundaries, a group that I am priviledged to work for. LWB exists to help orphans in China with medical, nutritional, and educational needs. . Here is Amy's story...
"When I was first getting started with my work in China, one of the orphanages we helped did not do many special needs adoptions. They didn't think that the kids would be chosen, and so many of the children were getting older and watching only the healthy babies leave for their new homes. They would hear the aunties say to the babies, "oh today is a lucky will have a family to love you." And the preschoolers and older kids would think to themselves....'it must be wonderful to have a family pick you.'

Well, we were going to do a heart surgery for one little girl in this orphanage, and so I asked for a photo of her so that we could raise funds. This orphanage didn't have a lot of nice clothing, so for this special photograph they wanted the little girl to look nice. Another little girl in the orphanage, named Yan, who was just three years old, had been given a beautiful red coat by a volunteer, and she loved that red coat and wore it all the time. The aunties went and took off her red coat to put on the child with heart disease for her photo, and Yan burst into tears crying. The aunties scolded her and said, "Yan, you must share your red coat...don't be selfish", but Yan kept crying and crying and kept trying to climb over the gate to get out in the hallway where the photo was being taken. Finally one aunty had heard enough, and so she walked over to Yan to take her back into the room. As she got closer, she realized that Yan was NOT crying because the other little girl was wearing her coat. No, not at all. Yan was crying while saying over and over, "take MY picture...please take MY picture. I want a family....take my picture so I can have a family, too. "
You see, at the ripe old age of three, Yan had already learned that the only way a baby got a family was by having her picture taken first. And she wanted a family of her own so badly, that she was crying to her aunties to please take her photo, too.

... I have been in orphanages when they do the files, and each and every time the aunties try to make the kids look at cute as possible. They say things like, 'smile pretty so a family will pick you." ...."

It breaks my heart to think of all the children who get their pictures taken and then WAIT and WAIT to see if a family will choose them. It must seem like an eternity of waiting (remember how loooong it took for Christmas to come when we were kids?). It breaks my heart to think of those who never even get a chance to have their photo taken at all. What must they think? "I am not even good enough that the orphanage would TRY to find me a family." And for those who wait to see if a family will choose them based on their picture..."Was my smile cute enough? Will a family think I am special?"

Please pray for these little ones...and may I ask you to be brave enough to ask Him if you might be the one that could answer their prayers...and their yearning for a family. You could live without them...but can they live without you?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Smile for the camera!

I have no news yet on Sinh, but think I am overdue for sending some updated pictures of little Jake. He is a ham but is really hard to photograph. He's either squinting in advance of the flash, or crawling away before I can get a picture taken. He is an absolute delight...full of fun and is constantly imitating us. He is especially fond of letting out high pitched shrieks in church (sigh) which either amuse or annoy depending on who is sitting in front of us. haha Big brother, Jordan, takes his role very seriously and is always on the look-out for any small objects lying around that baby Jake could choke on. So cute! The boys are opposites in personality--Jordan is quiet and serious, while Jake is um...NOT. He is smiley and takes great delight in making lots of loud noises.

"Yep, I'm always getting into the cupboards..."

Jordan says, "Mom, I'm trying to get Jacob to stay on my lap but the little bugger is slippery."

"Well, I do declare, I believe that child is wearing underwear on her head!" (Let's hope it was a clean pair.)

Jordan proudly rides his bike

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Baby Sinh needs prayer again

It has been awhile since I wrote about Baby Sinh--the sweet little baby girl in Vietnam that we had been trying to help. After surgeons in the US and Singapore said that her heart had deteriorated to the point of not being fixable, we had given up hope of finding a way to heal her heart.

Yeterday, I emailed the adoption agency that has been keeping track of her, and got an astonishing email back. The agency took her to Ho Chi Men City in Vietnam last night and she will be having heart surgery at a French Heart hospital there. The French hospital will not donate any of the cost, so the agency will have to raise $15,000 to pay for it.

Her name means, "life." I do not know what God has in store for this precious child--or if she will survive the surgery--but I know that her life has purpose. I ache to think of her having major heart surgery without a family sitting in the waiting room, ready to advocate for her every need, praying and hoping that she will live. So I ask you, on behalf of one orphaned little girl to spend a minute or two from this side of the world, praying for this sweet child as if you WERE in her waiting room. THANK YOU!

I will update the blog as soon as I have any news.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Kids Say the Funniest Things

I have been meaning to write down some of the funny things my kids have been saying and am finally getting around to it. Molly, our seven year old, is currently the child who says funny things without meaning to. Here are some of my favorites…

Jeff and I were discussing bunk beds. Molly piped up, “I know why they call them bonk beds…it’s because you always bonk your head on them.”

'Girly girl' is an expression we hear a lot around here. Since Jordan has been home, he has tried to learn the ropes by copying his sisters. They are trying to get him interested in trucks rather than purses (!). One day Molly said to me, "Mom...I saw Jordan playing with trucks! He's turning into a real Boyly Boy."

Baby Jake's diapers sometimes resemble the consistancy of (sorry....) play-doh. One day Molly came in while I was changing Jake's diaper, peered over to see what I was doing, recoiled and said, 'Ewwwww....I'm never playing with Play-doh again!"

Jillian was quizzing the kids on their knowledge of something (can’t remember what). One of the girls answered correctly and Molly said, “Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner!”

And then there is our spunky SaraGrace…
We were swimming the other day with some friends. Some little boys were there—age 7—and they are rough and tumble. My three oldest girls are very intimidated by them and keep their distance. SaraGrace was sitting on the edge of the pool, next to a wading pool full of water. One of the boys, who was in the pool, splashed her. Hmmmm….she got a glint in her eye, spotted a bucket, filled it up with water and dumped it over his head. She gleefully scooped up a second bucket and dumped that over his head, too. He didn’t care—but I was totally cracking up!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Little Man Jake has had a birthday

I should have updated this blog long ago--the summer has gotten away from me. Baby Jake turned one on July 14th. He was rather confused by all the hooplah, but the cake was good. :)

We have had a pretty quiet, laid back summer. We have stayed home mostly, letting Jake get adjusted to his new life and crazy family. He seems to like us. :) (Mommy is his current favorite, much to my delight). He is such a sweet little guy--although he rarely lets me hold him for long. He is extremely active and curious. He is into everything and I am thankful for the watchful eyes of his big sisters! He is such a happy baby--we are so grateful! I have had a hard time trying to capture a smile on camera, though, because he hates the flash and squints as soon as he sees the me coming. Here are some pictures of his birthday, and some recent favorites.

And last but not least, a family photo attempt (ha!) a few days ago....

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Foiled Wedding Plans

I overheard Jillian arranging a mock wedding this afternoon. She had dressed SaraGrace in a sparkly dress from the 'dress-up bin.' However, Jillian was quite frustrated because the intended groom had no formal attire for the big event. The next time I saw Jordan, he was dressed in the best Jillian could muster...a plaid shirt and khaki's.

Soon SaraGrace was dancing happily around the room, dragging the somewhat dazed looking groom. After a few minutes of that, he became disgusted and wanted to leave her clutches. If you know SaraGrace....well...that just wasn't going to sit too well with her. Jordan broke away from her and she followed him, scowling. Jillian shouted commands for Jordan to fall in line with THE PLAN. The reluctant groom became quite uncooperative, which spoiled all hopes of a wedding for today. SaraGrace crossed her arms and said, 'Fine,' with a huff, and Jordan was spared--at least for today.

I tried to get a picture of them dressed in their wedding finery, but sadly, SaraGrace was already wearing a different outfit when I returned with the camera.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Singing in the pool

SaraGrace loves to sing and perform. She has been cracking us up since the day we got her in China. The other day, I took a video of her singing in the baby pool with Molly. If you want to see it, here is the link:
You will probably have to copy and paste this link into your web browser.

SaraGrace could be voted, "most likely to embarrass us." She is spirited, loud, and loves to laugh and tease. The other day, we were at a restaurant and she had to go to the bathroom. As Molly and I were herding her to one, she announced loudly (while holding herself), "I have to go pee-pee!" Molly turned around, mortified, and said, 'SHHHHHH! You're going to gross out the customers!"

As I said, she love to sing. A few months ago, we were riding in the car and all the girls were each singing their own made up songs at a deafening level. After I reached my limit for noise and bedlam, I thought I would make a suggestion. "Why don't you guys sing an actual song? That way, you would all be singing the same thing." Without missing a beat, SaraGrace belted out, "Actual song, Actual song...."

Thursday, July 19, 2007

It's not Ryan's week

Ryan has had a very eventful week. He gave me permission to say that he failed his first driver's test. He was quite glum and we felt so sorry for him. Jeff took him for the first one, so I took him again the next day and thankfully, he passed. Before he had much time to celebrate, though, life got a bit interesting for him.

He had just returned from a week at a Christian camp and told us that he had an adventure with a raccoon the first day of camp. Apparently, he was taking out the trash in the middle of the afternoon and there was a raccoon near the dumpster. He tried to scare it and then kicked it--whereupon it attached itself to his leg and wouldn't get off. He tried to get it off but wasn't successful, so he picked up a rock and killed it. He had some scratches that broke the skin, but no one thought to have the raccoon tested for rabies. When he told us the story, I told him that he would need rabies shots. I looked it up online, sure enough, he did need rabies shots. Poor Ryan!

I took him to our doctor who confirmed that Ryan needed the rabies series, but said that we would have to go to ER for the vaccine, because they didn't have it. We were fairly light hearted about it all until we saw the look on the ER doctor's face when we told him that eight days had elapsed since the raccoon encounter. It was then that it finally hit me that Ryan had been put in a serious situation since rabies is fatal for humans or animals. We don't know if the raccoon was rabid, but some of it's odd behavior was listed on "how to know if a raccoon has rabies." He ended up getting 7 shots--four at the wound site and then....ignominy of ignominy...he had to drop trou in front of mom and the nurse for 3 shots in his derriere.

We have been teasing him about wearing a raccoon hat with a robber mask and amusing his friends.

Today he and his buddies decided to go 'mudding' with the pick-up truck and dirt bike. Ryan promised he wouldn't ride--and he didn't until evening. He came home moaning and groaning, unable to put weight on the same leg where he had gotten the rabies shots. He crashed his dirt bike into a tree at 60 miles an hour. Sigh...He is in tons of pain. Jeff is out of town, so I was trying to decide if I should make another trip to ER when we had the brilliant idea to call our neighbor who is an ER doctor. Ryan called him--ironically, he is the same guy Ryan bought the dirt bike from. Good way to get patients...ha! It took us 10 minutes to get him out to the car, but thankfully, our neighbor doesn't think he has more than a hairline fracture or bad bruise. He suggested waiting a few days and if it still hurts Ryan can get an X-ray. I feel so sorry for Ryan--although his bellowing in pain, might start to get old. :) So far his siblings and I are willing to wait on him hand and foot, but I'm wondering how long that will last!?! :) Jillian is willing to wait on him but said that it will be fun having Ryan not be able to chase her around. ha.

I am very thankful that he is okay--things could have been so much worse.

Friday, July 06, 2007

Show me the money!

A friend gave me this comic strip the other day, and I love it! (In case the print is too small to read, the father is saying, "Do you realize how rich we'd be if we didn't have four children and three pets?" The mom replies, "No, I realize how POOR we'd be." I have many people tell me that they would love to adopt, but they can't afford it. I know it is so scary to look into adopting and see a cost--from $15,000-30,000. However, I want to tell you what God has done for us and maybe it will encourage you to take a leap of faith!

We have never had the money to do any of our adoptions. Most of the time we started out with nothing, or maybe with just enough to get started. God has provided for us in many different ways. With Jacob's adoption, we were already in the hole for the entire amount of Jordan's adoption. And yet, despite having to borrow money sometimes, God has always given us a level of income to be able to make the payments--or put it on people's heart to help out. There have been times that Jeff got an unexpected bonus at work. There have been times when we received more back from our income taxes than we were expecting. None of our 'windfalls' have been enough to cover an entire adoption, but they have been enough to get us to the next step. Yes, we have made some sacrifices--like no vacations--but we are very much aware that we live better than most people in the world, so how could we complain?

This is my favorite story of God's provision. We had completed the paperwork for one of our adoptions but we didn't have the money for the next step. We needed $3,200 to pay the adoption agency fee. I put all the completed paperwork into a drawer and thought, "Well...I have no idea how THAT is going to get paid for." A few days later, Jeff called and said that his former company car was going to be removed from service. It had a problem and the company decided it wasn't worth fixing. Jeff asked if he could buy it (against company policy) and miraculously, they said yes. He bought it for $600! It was only a few years old and it was a very nice car. Jeff fixed the problem for very little money and put an ad in the paper to try to sell it. We got no response. Jeff wanted to use the money to fix up the basement but after the car didn't sell, he began to ask God what GOD wanted us to use the money for. We decided that it should go for the adoption. The very same day that Jeff gave up 'his right' to use the money the way he wanted to, God sold our car! When Jeff tallied up the costs of buying it and fixing it and deducted it from the sale price, the amount was..... $3,200!!!

When we began adopting, our income was much lower than it is now. We scrimped and saved to get Jillian home and as soon as she was home, God led us to start Molly's adoption. I was fearful of many things--not just money--but wondered how we could possibly parent four children?! I want you to know that God has increased our strength, our income, and everything we need. There is never more than we need--but there is enough. Over the years as we have adopted, God has raised our income as needed. I truly believe that we would not have these income blessings if we were not adopting. Even if we were, it would not compare to the blessings that the kids bring to us each day.

So if you are contemplating adopting, do not let the fear of lack of money or lack of energy (or any other 'LACK') hold you back. Take the leap of faith and trust God to supply all that you need. You'll be glad you did!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Yesterday's festivities

We had a fun, chaotic day--haha. My parents, siblings and their children came over for a cook-out and most stayed to watch our 13 year old son, Taylor, put on his own firework extravaganza. Taylor worked and saved up $100 to spend on fireworks (I don't get it??!) and hit a 2 for 1 sale, so he had an arsenal ready to go. It cracks me up how the sound of one firecracker can bring boys running from all over the neighborhood, as if drawn by some mysterious force. Our pastor and his wife live in our neighborhood and came over to watch. They also have a son with a 4 of July birthday--how cool is that. Their little Andrew turned 6 yesterday.

Here are some photos of our day! :) We celebrated Taylor's birthday, also, since he will turn 13 on July 7th. SaraGrace regaled us with a loud rendition of "Jesus Loves Me" while standing on a table (her stage) and dressed in high heels. She loves to perform. Maybe next year we can teach her the "Star Spangled Banner!"