Saturday, February 28, 2009

Running For Brighton - Race #6

This morning we ran Race #6 in the series of 76 in honor of Brighton's 76 days on earth. Our great friend Mark found the Scenic City Half Marathon in Chattanooga, TN and he decided to run it with us.

Once again God used this time out on the run to allow me to reflect on the situation with orphans in Africa and elsewhere around the world. They all face challenges. Some bigger than others, some harder to overcome - but all of them are staring right in the face of challenges.

This race was no different. In a downpouring rain we started out on to what ended up being a hilly and windy course. If you see Mark - congratulate him. That guy can run! He finished light years ahead of me and was just about to call a search and rescue team when I came stumbling across the finish line.

Another race down - another day packed full of thoughts of our son. You've changed our world Brighton.

Thanks so much to Mark for running with me and for his whole team and the Daniel 3 for coming out to support us and hang out the rest of the day. We had a blast!

Wanna help bring an orphan home to a forever family? You can. And it's easy. Go here to support the Running For Brighton series of races!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Kiss Sandwich

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Pway Pease...

We've been praying with Meron since the moment she was placed in our arms. I mean - we've been mentally praying with her for a LONG time before that even - but physically we pray before every meal and every night as a family before she goes "night night."

Well - it is just so cool to see it all paying off and to watch her begin to develop a healthy habit of prayer. Yeah - sure - you could argue she has no idea what she's doing and she's just copying us - but here's the kicker - we don't clasp our hands hardly ever - we hold hands. So why did she start doing that? I dunno.

Regardless of whether she's copying mom and dad or communicating with God in that tiny little head of hers - there is nothing more precious than when she clasps her hands together and looks at us and says "Pway pway... pease?"

And ya wanna know what? We think we're teaching her so much - but this little girl has taught us how to come to God in such an open and simple and honest manner. We pray for the whole day - we pray for mommy traveling to work - we pray for blessed food and blessed health. We pray for friends and family. We pray for her pal Abe almost every single day. It's all very simple.

Her eagerness and desire to do it before every single meal is inspiring. It reminds me of the eagerness, simplicity and passion of the young kids praying in South Africa.

Say what you will about her copying us versus actually desiring to speak with God. But there is something absolutely holy about her doing it. And I hope it never, ever changes.

Thank you God for using Meron to teach us a valuable lesson... that you don't care about the words we use or the way we pray. You just want to hear from us!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

State of the Household Address

"You don't need a list of statistics to know that my stomach is in crisis. You hear me everyday. It's the worry you wake up with and the source of your sleepless nights.

The impact of the dietary recession in my belly is real, and it is everywhere.

But snack-craving toddlers, tonight I want you to know this: we will overcome, we will recover, we will eat when and what we want to.

As I speak, members of Congress are preparing a stimulus package that I will insert directly into my belly. Yours are coming - I promise!

We will not be beaten - our snacks will be eaten!

Thank you all - it's time for night night..."

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Night Night!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Yanking Lashes

Meron has always had beautiful eyelashes - I mean it's one of the first things we noticed about her. So long and so pretty. Well, guess who else has noticed them?

That's right - she has. The mirror in front of her carseat isn't doing us any favors either. Laura caught her checking herself out in there the other day and then reaching up and plucking an eyelash right out!


So in the meantime - before she yanks them all out - enjoy a few pics of Meron and her gorgeous lashes...

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Brighton's Free and Clear Date

February 22nd will always be a special date for us. For a couple of months it was a date we were counting down to with so much anticipation and joy. February 22, 2008 was to be Brighton's "free and clear" date for him to be adopted.

Most of you know Brighton's story and know we didn't make it to that date. Brighton is never far from our minds. Not a day goes by where we don't think about him - wave at his picture in Meron's room or silently wonder "why?" or "what could've been?"

But we will gladly take any reminder that puts Brighton's short but impactful life in the limelight for us. So we embrace what this day means to us with joy and happiness (and a little bit of sadness too).

You did so much with so little Brighton. Thank you.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Love Thy Neighbor

Jesus makes it pretty clear to those of us who choose to follow Him that loving our neighbors is a really big deal to Him.

Matter of fact - as he tells it to some law experts in Matthew - second to loving God with all of our heart, soul, and mind - it's the most important thing we can do.

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
Later on - another expert of the law asks Jesus how he too can inherit eternal life - Jesus again points him to these two commandments. They definitely don't sound like suggestions to me.

This is something we desperately want to be doing in Camp Hoffman. Serving the least. Loving our neighbors. Even loving our enemies (so much harder than ya think)!

We want Meron to grow up seeing these things in action - not just hearing about them. We are very blessed to be part of a church that feels the same way. Today - along with about 150 other people from our church - we headed out to Calvary Children's Home for Meron's first day of serving and loving as a family.

The Goal? Play with the kids. Love the kids. Share a meal with the kids. Bring hope to the kids. As usual - we walked away receiving so much more than we gave - but best of all? God was glorified in a big way.

I can't think of a better way to spend the day than hanging out with friends we love and spreading that love to a great group of kids who need to see it.

Won't you join us in praying for this incredible ministry that sits right here in our backyards? Their love for God and faith in Him to provide is nothing short of incredible.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Slicked Down

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Monday, February 16, 2009

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Saturday, February 14, 2009

8 Months of Valentines

Exactly 8 months ago today our family was together for the first time. What a ride it's been since. The love we've felt in this household has been overwhelming... it's felt like 8 months of valentines!

So how perfectly fitting it was for our family anniversary to fall on this day. I am blessed to have a family that really knows and appreciates love. We realize that love every single day - and don't even need an overpriced paper card or a bag of candy to feel it.

What better way to celebrate the day than to just hang out as a family all day long! Meron - your mommy and daddy love you!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Desperate Times...

Desperate times call for desperate measures. With all of us feeling the economic crunch right now - we felt it was time for Meron to head out and get her first taste of the real world.

Thanks Meron - for pulling your weight!!