"I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me - the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace." Acts 20:24

To Tell of His Grace

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

More HLF pictures :)

We have had the best time with this precious group of Staff and children! They are here for the rest of this week and then they head up north on their tour across America!

Uncle Ben, Dawit, Kolson, Kennady and Keegan...We were so blessed to have Uncle Ben and Dawit stay with us! They will forever be in our hearts!!! We miss them already!

Checking out the elephants

Mike, Ben, Christa and Donaldson

This was the kids' first time at the Zoo!

Watching the Chimps perform

Our kids with Dawit

America and Dawit

Kolson and Donaldson watching the sea lions

Our kids with Doanldson...such a sweetie!

Keeg was impressed with some of the creatures in the Reptile Room

Donaldson wasn't too sure of most of them ;)

Uncle Ben was brave to get so close to this guy!
This is what we have been filling our days with! Yesterday we went to Pump It Up and the park for a picnic and soccer game.....

Silly kids ;)

These kids could have played Soccer for many more hours!!!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

His Little Feet

We are SO blessed to be hosting His Little Feet International Orphan Choir again this year! They are here for Speak Up on Sunday!!! Our kids LOVE having them here - last year God used this group of special kids to move in our family in ways that have changed us forever...we will never be the same thanks to His glorious GRACE!!! 

All the Host Families with HLF kids and Staff

The kids are getting ready to be on Great Day with Kopi :)

Kennady, Kols and Donaldson (Mike and Christa Hahn are the directors of HLF and they adopted Donaldson from Haiti in the fall)

Sis and her new friend Harper

Uncle Ben and Donaldson with our kids

Great Day had HLF sing 5 songs...all praising Jesus over public television...I love it!!!

Kols and Dawit - the sweet boy we are hosting from Ethiopia

Marini kids, America, Dawit and our kids....pausing one quick second from their play for a photo

Sis and Kiki with Dawit

Uncle Ben and America (the kids started playing dress up with Kaylee's clothes - clothes that have been handed down to us... that I just finished organizing all by size ;)  O well, they had a blast doing it!!!

Even Uncle Ben had to get a picture of America

Dawit's turn dressing up!!!

Trying a skateboard...trying to figure it out :)

America as "Miss America" and Sis

And the "world traveler" as the kids called him ;)

"Super Mom" is this one's name

This one they called "fruit picker" (they put all of our fruit from our fruit basket in this baby carrier :)   Kids are so creative!!!

A cheerleader... I'm realizing we may need to get some boy dress up clothes ;) We have no idea how he knows to put his leg up like a liberty but it was hilarious!!!

America has energy that never ends!!!

A fun night of dinner and playing!!!

And here are the HLF kiddos teaching our kids some of the moves to one of their songs...

Too fun!!!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Forever Family Cake

We have been so blessed to get connected with 2 other families who are also adopting 2 year old girls from Kaylee's orphanage. One of the moms has a daughter who is 3 that they adopted from China a little over a year ago so she has been so helpful to us other two moms with informing us of everything we need to know along the way. One thing she suggested that we all do is go in together and give our girls a "Forever Family Cake" - which is usually done about a month before you go and get them to bring them home. When you send a cake, they give you pictures of them eating it...which was such a blessing to get today!!! We also got our last update of her from our agency before we travel so that we can plan what size clothes to bring :)

The three sweet little ones in the red are our girls (from left to right: Charlotte Mae, Kaylee Grace and Lucy - behind the cake). How HUGE is this cake - I had no idea it would be that large!!!

Sweet Lucy has a big smile - she will be with her family on Monday!!! (Click on her name to follow her journey - everything you see them do, go, stay, is where we will be in a month or two!). Charlotte Mae is feeding herself and Kaylee Grace is on the ground ;)

Here is our girl eating her cake!!! And yes, she is holding a ball - which was what her orphanage told us was her favorite toy :)

And here she is standing in the background (and we think it looks like she is walking!!!) We were told she can't walk yet...but maybe she has started???

Charlotte Mae being fed some yummy cake!

We were so excited to get these precious pictures!!! We cannot wait to get there and hold her!!!

Monday, January 21, 2013

One Step Closer....

We received our I800 approval on January 9 and it was cabled to China January 15! We dropped off our Article 5 on January 18 and should be able to pick it up Feb 1 :) After that all we have is Travel Approval and then we're off to China! We are getting closer and can't wait to travel to go get our Kaylee!!!

Dear Jesus, we continue to pray that You would prepare both Kaylee's heart and our hearts...knit us as one in You. May You so cover her and surround her with Your Presence that she recognizes Your Holy Spirit in us and she feels safe right away when she is placed in our arms. God, You are good and we trust You. Thank You for the blessing of Kaylee Grace!!! In Your Name, Amen

Monday, January 14, 2013

San Diego ~ Passport to Purity Weekend

This weekend we went to San Diego for Kennady's Passport to Purity weekend :)  We praise Jesus for making this time so sweet and precious - special one-on-one time with our sweet Sis!!! Our flight was canceled so we had to fly first to LA then to SD - we had a 3 hour layover in LA so we started out Passport to Purity projects in the airport ;)  God made it special none the less!

Daddy and Sis heading onto the plane

Mommy and Sis are ready to go :)

Sissy working on one of her projects in the airport ;)
Here is Sis made out of play dough. We then made 2 other "friends"...one a great friend who encourages her in God's ways and builds her up. She and the friend share a great friendship and grow close (we then mixed the two different play dough friends together and it made a very nice color). Then a bad friend comes into the picture and begins to corrupt these two girls and their good character (we then mixed all 3 play dough colors together and it made a yucky grey, bland color).

And here is the contrast of the bright pretty green and the bland grey - showing that if we really want to shine for Jesus we need to choose our friends wisely.

Me ans Sis with the "good" friends

Lunchtime ;)

We then got to our hotel and finished the rest of our projects - so much fun and SO powerful!!! What a wonderful gift to have this material for us to have this sweet time with our girl before she enters Jr High! Then we headed off to a nice dinner ;)

The next morning we woke up and after breakfast we finished our last bit of our purity sessions and projects...then we were off to Sea World!

Ready for a fun day :)

Walking from our hotel to Sea World over a bridge -  Sea World is behind us ;)

Our first ride - The Manta...Sissy's favorite!!! She ended up riding it 10 times ;)  I only made it once - fun ride but made me way too dizzy! Brod made it 8!!! (barely)   ;)

Shamu ;)

In the Shark Encounter

We are so proud of the godly young woman that God has created you to be! His Light shines in you!! We had such special one-on -one time with you :) You are a joy to have as a daughter- so sweet, helpful and responsible! At 12, your sweet innocence is delightful to see. We told you at Sea World that you remind us of a dolphin ~ always playful, joyful, friendly and energetic. Our prayer: that you will set an example for others in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity (1 Tim 4:12). 
We love you, girl!!!  

"To Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before His Glorious Presence without fault and with great joy - to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen." Jude 24

On our way home - can't believe we actually wore you out!!! It doesnt' happen very often ;)

Excited to get home and see the boys ~ they had a little vacation of their own being pampered at Nana and Papa's :) Made-to-order breakfasts, movies, football games...too much fun!!!
Nana said you boys were VERY helpful ;) Claire also spent the night so you got to help with her as well!