Friday, December 18, 2009

Not Much of an Update on our Update

I had to grab my camera when I was making dinner last night.  I almost burned my sloppy joes, I was having so much fun.  I’ll spare you the other 20 pictures I have of him in his high chair.  You would think he was the first baby around here.

He’s showing off his new tooth.


I don’t think it’s showing up well on these little pictures.


Wait…time for an “O” break…


That’s better.



We did hear from the neurologist today.  Well, from his appointment desk.  They called to tell us we have an appointment on January 5th.  I asked if they saw anything and she just said the doctor would go over all of his tests at our appointment.

Our pediatrician’s nurse said they probably just want to get a base line to start monitoring it.  We’ll see.  So far, he does not have any symptoms of having any problems.  Please pray that the fluid continues going down and does not affect his brain.

Thank you all for your prayers!!! 

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Thank you for all of the prayers.  We heard from the doctor and Gideon does have some fluid on his brain and that is what is causing the odd shape.  The doctor thinks it will clear up on it’s own, but is sending everything to a neurologist for a second opinion.  We will take him in regularly to have his head measured to monitor growth.

Please pray his body will do whatever it needs to do to get rid of the extra fluid and he will not have to have any procedures done.



Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Happy Birthday!


happy birthday, sweet ellie!

How does this happen so fast???  We went to a mother daughter retreat last weekend and the speaker made it a point to remind us why our kids grow up so fast.  In the day to day, it seems like it’s going to take forever for our kids to grow up – learn to dress themselves, not to chew with their mouths open, to turn off the lights and shut the doors – but when we do the math, we realize just how little time we have with them.

Now that Ellie is 10 years old, I only have 416 weekends with her until she turns 18. 

Or, 2920 days.

Yes, that’s a lot, but I would have guessed the number was much higher if I didn’t use a calculator.

I remember hearing a story a while back about a dad that calculated how many weekends he had left before his son would turn 18 and he put that many marbles in a jar on his dresser.  Each week he would take a marble out as a reminder that the time he has with his son is limited.

What a great reminder for me to be purposeful in how I spend my days with my children.  Even if our purpose is just to hang out and have fun. 

Now we are going to practice some sewing with her new sewing machine.


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Prayer Request


We had a CT Scan done this morning to see why Gideon’s head is growing so quickly.  It’s also a bit asymmetrical.  Of course, it all looks perfect to me, but the doctor said we really should check it out.  He was great about emphasizing that it could just be genetics so I wouldn’t worry too much.

We already have our first praise…he stayed still and didn’t cry, so they did not need to sedate him.


We should hear something in the next few days, so we are asking our friends and family to pray for God’s peace…and good results.

I know there have been several babies needing the helmets to re-shape their heads, but does anyone else have kids whose head circumference is off the charts (by quite a bit)?

Just wondering.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Make Up Pictures

I made a big mistake and apparently broke a huge blog rule.  I didn’t post a picture of our little guy on my last post.


Let me make up for it.



Oh, and he just started crawling.  The kids were shocked and said “this morning he was just sitting around, and this afternoon we have to put everything up!” I just saw my productivity drop significantly.  But…way to go, little guy!



We had our Christmas party at Grandparent’s Club.  The kids entertained them with songs, dances, and reading from the Bible.

Ellie sang a song and played a duet with her friend.


And, Gideon entertained all the grandma’s by looking cute.


Sorry the picture is blurry.  I’m still trying to figure out the new camera.  But, his cuteness still shines through all the blur.   

I hope everyone is having a peaceful and enjoyable time as you prepare for Christmas. 

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Recycled Formula Cans

Gideon has been home with us a little over 3 months now.  In that short time, he’s gained almost 7 pounds…

and I have the empty formula cans to prove it. 

I just couldn’t bring myself to throw them away and they were beginning to stack up.

Until today when I needed to come up with some goody bags for Ellie’s 10th birthday party tomorrow.

I combined the need to get some of those cans out of my house with the need to get rid of some guilt about not even plugging in the Cricut Tony bought me for my birthday over a month ago that I just had to have. Well, my birthday was not a month ago.  It was only a couple of weeks ago.  But, I always talk him into giving me my gifts early.  Kinda like the camera I wanted for Christmas.  How do you like the pictures it takes?

I’m still figuring it out.  IMG_0051


See…I needed to get it early so I could “practice” so I can get some good shots on Christmas morning.  Are you convinced?

So, if you’re looking for a way to recycle all of those formula cans, just cover them with scrapbook paper and fill them with tissue and goodies.  I snapped the lid on the bottom of the can so the girls can use the can to store stuff in later.

Now I don’t have a bit of guilt about throwing away a perfectly sturdy can, and it’s out of my house.

Sounds like a win-win situation to me.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Thanksgiving Camping Trip

It’s been crazy around here, as usual, but it sure has been FUN!  We went searching for some fall color with 5 other families and had a blast camping – in an RV, of course, because I’m not insane enough to tent camp with an 8 month old.  (I actually admire those of you who are willing to do that!)  Tony makes sure I remember my “camping” experience included a microwave and refrigerator, so he’s hesitant to say we went camping.

Either way, it was tons of fun and the kids had a blast.  Little man was great and just hung out in my Ergo most of the trip…even the 5 mile hike.  We never heard a peep out of him.  He just enjoyed the scenery and took a few cat naps.

Bear was another story…we heard plenty from her by the end.  Five miles was pretty adventurous for her little legs.  The next day, she had no interest in going on any hikes until we were going on one that ended at Crystal Caverns and she knew she could look at crystals in the rocks.

Rocks are her love language.

That’s a pretty sweet deal for me since that means she’s happy with her rock “hamster'” that lives in a real hamster cage.  Rock hamsters are not smelly at all.  And, we didn’t need to find anyone to feed it when we went camping…(nice segue back to the camping trip, huh?)


Go, Bear, Go..up that Texas mountain!



Here’s our laidback little guy, ready to go wherever we drag him.


Bear’s ready to explore the cave.


Bear didn’t care that is was hard work getting there…she was motivated.




We came home in time to spend Thanksgiving Day with our family.  I hope everyone had a relaxing day. 

Monday, October 26, 2009

Off to the Theatre.

We love going to see plays at a children’s theater in Houston.  They always do a fantastic job.  What makes it even better is the kids get to sit on the first row of the rotunda, so all of the action is right in front of them.  It’s very cool seeing everything up close like that.

And, we have to say, “We’re going to the Theatre” in our most snotty voice, just for fun.   Of course, it’s not a fancy theater.  We’re in Texas.  Notice in the picture below that the rotunda is “This a way”.  They’re just being funny – we don’t really talk like that. 

Okay, yes we do.

The last show we went to see was The Secret Garden.  My kids loved that book.  I was shocked when Bear asked me if that was the one with the bird and the wall.  She was only 4 or 5 when I read it to the kids.  That really taught me a lesson about how much these little ones pick up.  I would have thought a long book like that would have gone over her head.

Of course, I could not take any pictures of the play, but the kids posed outside the theater.


Now, I’m off to read Treasure Island to Gideon.  I don’t want him to get behind.  ha! 

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Grandparent’s Club

On Thursdays, we head on down to a local nursing home to spend some time with our “adopted” grandparents.  When we were first asked to join this group, I was thinking this was going to be a real stretch for the kids.  I even wondered if it would take them too far out of their comfort zone.  I  thought we could try it.

Each of the kids have their own grandparent they sit with each week.  They visit, do a craft together, have a snack, and then play a little Bingo – complete with prizes from the Bingo Basket!

When the kids got in the car to leave after our first visit, they asked me when we were going back.  I told them we would go next Thursday. 

Then, they shocked me with their response.  They said…

You mean we get to come and do this EVERY week?!

What a blessing to this momma’s ears to hear them say “get to” instead of “have to”.

Grandparent’s Club is super easy.  We have around 10 families that come each week.  Every week, one mom brings a snack (I brought cinnamon mini muffins and cups of water) and one mom brings a craft the kids can help their grandparents with.  We all pitch in items for the well loved Bingo Basket.  That’s it!

The kids learn valuable lessons.  We teach them we are there to bless our grandparents.  The kids don’t earn Bingo prizes - they help their grandparent mark their cards and the grandparent wins the prize.  Also, the kids go and serve their grandparent the snack first, then they can go get one for themselves.  And, we make sure all the grandparents have made it back to their rooms (some need to be wheeled), then we leave the place cleaner than we found it.

The lessons are great for the kids, but I’m also so happy they get to meet interesting people with great stories.  That’s the beauty of having the same grandparent each week – getting to know them.

Here are the kids having some fun. 

IMG_4332  IMG_4330

Car was so happy to find a grandmother that will make funny faces and play with him.  Look how precious she is!  She’s 90 years old and was copying what Car was doing.  I love it!


Thursday, October 1, 2009

Six Months

 It’s me again.  I have something to show you…


I’m sitting all by myself!


I know…I’m getting so big.


It’s SO COOL!!!  HA!


Watch out world…


Oh, there’s that tongue again.


Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Ellie and Gideon are reading a touch and feel book from a sweet friend of ours, Brooke.  Her family is just finishing up their homestudy for a domestic adoption.  They were moved to adopt the same time we were.  But – they don’t have a blog, or I would tell you to go meet them. 


Gideon was more interested in feeling the pictures of the baby feet in this book than the texture pages.  I like that the baby feet were mixed skin tones.  Those things used to go right over my head.   Not because I didn’t think it was important or didn’t care, I was just clueless.


I’ve also started noticing the tongue sticking out more.  Ellie must be concentrating pretty hard.


It’s funny the comments about the tongue sticking out.  I’ve read so many blogs about Ethiopian babies and their tongues.  I think Missy blogged about it right when he started doing it, so I had to share his silly pictures, too.  It cracks me up!

Our Entertainment

Who needs television?  With 5 kids, we have all the entertainment we could stand around our house.  Our latest source comes from Gideon’s discovery of his tongue. 


What makes it even funnier, is that he doesn’t even know why we’re laughing.  He looks you right in the eye and gives you a serious look while he tries to touch his tongue to his nose.


I can’t stop laughing as I think…What if adults could get away with this stuff?  What if your boss was talking to you about a big project and you just started sticking your tongue out as far as you could?

Where’s the line when this stuff becomes disrespectful?


The things babies get away with.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Love This!

Car and Bear holding hands while they walk over to Mimi’s house.  Notice she’s wearing his jeans.  She said she could wear them because they were in her drawer.

 IMG_4217 IMG_4218IMG_4219

Monday, September 21, 2009

Okay, Okay…

Apparently, the fifth child pushed me into feeling I no longer have time to update our blog.  I think it’s more about having a baby than the number of children I have.  Suddenly, blog time is either during nap (but I have a million other things competing for this time), or while I’m typing one handed (I’m not very good at this…yet).

But, I don’t want to stop.  I love having a record of what is going on in our lives.  Even if it’s just for me to go back and reminisce.  Plus, I’ve made some really sweet blog friends that I would miss. 

Lately, we’ve stayed super busy.  Everything seems even busier when you throw a baby into the mix. 

Tony was in an accident and totaled his truck.  Someone tried to make a u-turn and didn’t check both ways, so they pulled right into him.  Fortunately, he and his mom were okay – just sore.  That’s what every family wants to do a couple of weeks after they get home from picking up their child from Ethiopia…buy a new truck.  ha!

Gideon is doing fantastic!  He is such a lover boy with us…but no one else.  That’s a good sign, right?  He seems to have picked up who his family is really quickly.

With everything we’ve been doing, I haven’t been good about taking pictures.  My hands seem to be full all the time for some reason. But, I’m sure I’ll get better.  It just takes practice.

Okay – on to the pictures…




Monday, September 14, 2009

Lots of Happy Days!


We got home from Ethiopia and I rested quietly for the next week, lounging in bed.  I just have a luxurious life like that.

Not really.

I did spend a week in bed, but I was super sick.  ugh.

Once I bounced back, we jumped right back into our busy life.

Our little man is doing so well.  He’s sleeping through the night – YAY!  And, he’s already showing signs of attaching.  It was so sweet on Saturday – Tony took the kids to his company picnic for a few hours and I stayed home with a sick Ellie girl.  When they came home, little man grabbed me and squealed while he started smacking and slobbering all over my face.  I love that!  I forgot how wet babies are.. and in so many ways!

Then, our baby girl Bear turned six on September 10th.  She’s totally enjoying her new role as big sister.  It’s been fun watching a new side of her personality come out.



Car’s birthday is the very next day.  September 11th is quite a day for us.  Eight years ago, as we all sat astonished by the events going on with the terrorists, Car made his way into the world.  He brought great joy to our family and friends that day, and still does.



Now, we get to add the Ethiopian New Year celebration on September 11th.  I refuse to bake a third cake in two days for it though!  We’ll have to start a tradition of eating Ethiopian food for dinner sometime that week, so Car can still choose his birthday dinner.  They do not use the same calendar we use here in America, so…Happy 2002!