Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Happy Birthday Sarah!

Is this girl excited about her birthday or what?!? We had a very special birthday party for Sarah with our family on Sunday. I'll let the pictures do the talking : )


Loved the cake!

We had her party at a "sprinkler park"... hence the swim trunks. It was a beautiful day!


Caught in the act!!


Our traditional pinata time!!
... with almost all the cousins : ) We missed you Sam, Alex and Anna

Sarah's turn (with her cute little baton)


Next, Emily's turn!


mmmm.... presents!

It was a very memorable day! I have thought of Sarah's birthmom a lot today and am so grateful for her and her love for this precious bundle of joy!

Friday, September 19, 2008

The Significance of September 24


I have shared many stories this past year of how God has grown me, changed me and taught me but I have not shared this one until today....

Two years ago on a Friday night in September, Dave and I were busy hustling around getting ready for our youth fall retreat just hours away. The boys were headed to his sister's for the weekend and I was finishing up packing. I was especially light hearted having just found out 4 weeks earlier, miracle upon miracle, I was expecting!

I went to use the restroom but only to my horror. I was bleeding... and pretty heavily. The doctor put me on bedrest, Dave went to the retreat without me and the boys still went to his sister's. Every minute of that weekend felt like an eternity and I've never felt so alone. I prayed constantly... mostly that I would trust God with His plan. And yet, it was so painful emotionally to know I couldn't make my body stop cramping.

Sunday morning, September 24, I woke and continued do what I was doing... praying and trying to distract my thoughts from the worst. But within a few hrs., something changed. I suddenly didn't feel any of my pregnancy symptoms. I was sure the life inside me was gone.

An ultrasound machine screen would show me the next day my fears were true, that the little beating heart that was once there was no longer. (The picture above is a photo of a drawing I did capturing the "vision" God gave me as I woke up from my DNC of a little girl(our daughter) playing with Jesus).

Many months later we were well on our way in our adoption process but I was still struggling. I didn't want to admit it for so many reasons. I felt surely I should be able to handle a miscarriage after knowing the Lord for so many years. I also felt I should be rejoicing over our adoption not dwelling on the past.

But God had more for me to learn about Him.

I was in my car crying out to the Lord. I told Him that I believed that He had experienced and knows every suffering known to man and yet how does He coming to earth as a "man" know the pain of infertility and loss? He answered with one word ... Israel.

We had been studying Israel in my inductive Bible study. And that night at my study... God moved powerfully.

The Lord knows exactly what it's like to lose a "child". He lost Israel after years of loving and caring for His chosen ones. Romans 11 tells us how some of the branches(Israel) were broken off so that a wild olive branch(Gentiles) might be grafted in. He allowed Israel to fall away by their unbelief so that the Gentiles(Me!) could be grafted in to His family.

As we moved through this passage of Scripture, I was only able to keep it together long enough till I got to my car. I came home that night sobbing as I shared with Dave how God showed me that the loss of our "natural, biological" baby allowed us to graft in(adopt) a baby so that she might know the Lord and someday truly be grafted into the family of God. The Lord had met me in my hour of need with Truth from His Word.

Many more months went by in our adoption process before we got our "call". It was October 3, 2007. Joanna from our agency said, " well, we have a referral for you". I was filled with a rush of butterflies and my stomach did flip flops.

She went on... " she was born September 24..." I almost dropped the phone. In a very shaky voice, I said, "what?" Again, Joanna said, "she was born September 24 and her name is..."

I cut her off, " September 24?(I started crying).... this baby is my baby, I already know she's my baby(I'm still crying)..." I then went on to explain to the case worker who was probably at a loss with my reaction.

And here she is... my sweet, sweet baby!




She's already found the candy jar!


Such a ham


I love you my sweet Sarah!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My little Sunshine

video

Happy 1/2 Birthday Emily!

It's hard to believe 6 months have gone by so quickly! We are so thankful for this little peanut who truly is like sunshine in our lives! (If you want to hear her talk, you'll have to turn our blog music off)

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Firsts...

First day of FIRST grade!


First fight (notice the object of Sarah's aggression... a sock by Emily's head)

First boat ride!

First kiss from Daddy on the boat : )

First time Zach gets to drive Grandpa Chip's boat!

First day of Pre-K!