Thursday, May 31, 2007

Becoming as Gold

Job 23:10
But he knows the way that I take when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.

Father God it is hard to desire testing in order to be more Christlike. However, I know from experience that we rarely grow in good times. It's the intense heat that makes us pure. May I be gold and not wood, hay, or stubble. Amen.

What pain or test am I experiencing today? Trying to wait patiently for placements.

What step can I take to work towards becoming as gold? I can continue to pray and trust in God that He will bring us the kids that he has in store for us. I can continue to try and wait patiently. I can continue to clean and organize and get things ready for them to come.

Join a support group. I'm on a foster parent message board and I also asked when and where our foster parents organization meets so that I can start going to meetings.

Abba, everytime they call if gives me great hope that we're going to get some kids in here. Then, everytime I don't hear back from the intake coordinator about them it gets a little discouraging. Yet, I know that I need to remember that some of these things won't happen right away and we can still wind up getting them a little later. I know that I need to be patient and that it will happen soon. Please help me put my worries to rest and wait patiently. I give my worries and hopes to you and ask that You will bring us some kids soon.


Calls, but no placements yet...

Well, we're getting called...but we don't have any placements yet. The first call was for a sibling set of sisters that were 7 years old and a newborn. That set wound up not needing a home. Then, we were called about a sibling set of brothers who were 5 and 6 that were no longer receiving visits. However, one of them had asthma and we were checking whether our cats were going to be an issue. She told us that she'd call us back when she heard back from their caseworker and knew more. Then, 2 days ago, I received a call asking if we'd consider doing respite care for 2 weeks for a 17 year old girl and her 1 1/2 year old daughter. I declined that one. She also wanted to ask if we'd consider taking a sibling set of girls who were 5 years old and 20 months that were no longer doing visits and I said yes to that one. She said she'd let CPS know that we were interested and call us back when they knew more. Each call gets my hopes up and then when we don't hear back it's discouraging. I know I need to be patient and some of this can take time...I'm just so anxious and so is Deidra. Andy's also going to probably be going to NYC in a couple of weeks and I'd really like to get some kids settled in here before he goes. It's hard to put anything up ahead of time since we don't know whether we'll need the crib or toddler beds or the bunk beds. Anyway, that's my update for now. I'll keep you posted. Abba, please bring us some placements very soon.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

One Day at a Time

Zechariah 4:6b
"Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit," says the LORD Almighty.

Father God, I pray for my schedules. I ask for wise discernment in order to gain control of my life. Give me the courage to say "no" to the time wasters and say "yes" to the things that have eternal value. Amen.

I like the idea of making lists listing what I have to do each day. I think it will help me stay more organized and get what I need to done for the day. I'm going to start it tomorrow and see how it goes. I'll have to think of a reward for myself at the end of the day if I can accomplish my goals. It takes 21 days to establish a new tomorrow is going to start my day 1. Abba, I ask for your help in this goal and honoring my lists.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

What a friend!

2 Timothy 1:18b
You know very well in how many ways he helped me in Ephesus.

Father God, thank You for my many friends who stand beside me in all situations. They are always there when I need them to listen, laugh, and cry. They are so special to my life. May they realize what their friendship means to me. Amen.

I want to take a couple minutes too to lift up a few of my friends in prayer. I pray for Tracie who I have known since kindergarten. We haven't seen one another in years, however we do keep in touch through the computer. Her ex-husband just died recently and her and her girls are having a hard time. I lift them up to You and pray for peace and comfort for them. I pray for Niki and her family...I met Niki in first grade and although her Mom had custody of her boys, they just lost her boys in a car accident on Good Friday. I continue to lift them up in prayer. I pray for Racheal, whom I have been best friends with since 7th grade and still are to this day. She's never let distance stand in the way of our friendship as I've moved to Chicago and now to Texas. She's had a rough time in her marriage off and on for the last few years and I lift their marriage up to you and I pray for the spirit of joy for them both and I pray that they will both learn to help one another and be able to lean on one another when they're feeling weak. I also want to lift up Cindi and Charlie...we've known them since high school and our friendships have really blossomed since we found each other again in Chicago. I lift them up in prayer as they go through the adoption process in China. I lift Sarah up in prayer and hope that we can remain in touch as she was a special friend to me in Chicago...I'll never forget how sweet her and her mom were when we were going through our financial difficulties and they brought us groceries and diapers for the week when we didn't know how we were going to make it through that week. I lift up Jenn as she goes through the trials of trying to have a baby and I pray for guidance for her as she tries to figure out just how far she's willing to go to try and have her own baby.

These are just a few friends that I wanted to lift up and name specifically...I've been blessed with my friendships and if I could name them all here, I would, but you all know who you are. I thank all of you for sticking by me and for being there for me when I needed you and I lift all of you up in prayer and ask for blessings to be showered upon all of you. I love you all!


Being Content in Everything

1 Timothy 6:6
But godliness with contentment is great gain.

Father God, You know that my heart's desire is to be content in whatever state I'm in. I want to be like Paul in that regard. You have given me so much and I want to graciously thank You for those blessings. Amen.

I thank you for giving me the gift of being a wife and being able to be a mother. I thank you for blessing us in our move to Texas and for giving us our jobs here. I thank you for giving us our land in which we are building our home. I thank you for moving us here so close to our church. I thank you for the gift of family and our friends and I just thank you for everything that you have given us. I ask You to reveal to me also what You want me to learn from my present situation. Thank you, Abba, for all of my blessings and the blessings that you have given to our family as a whole. We are very blessed!


Here's the pictures of our house lot where our new house is being built! Thank you, Abba, for our many blessings! We are so excited!


Our Sold Sign on Our Lot

Here is our "Sold" sign on our lot that we got to place after signing the contract!


Saturday, May 26, 2007

I cannot wait to get our first placement...

I so cannot wait to get our first placement. They have licensed us for 4 we could possibly have 5 children in this house. Everyone in our families seems to not believe that we are ok with this. Big families have always fascinated me. I've had someone ask me if we were going to start using birth answer was no. I'd love a big family and if we do manage to one day get pregnant again, we'll gladly welcome a baby. I told my Mom last night as we were talking about the Church's stance on no birth control, that I had really been doing a lot of praying lately and letting God know that I was totally open to life and whatever He wanted to bring us. I'm trusting Him with what I can handle and what He chooses to give me. I also know that there's an extreme shortage on foster homes and that we can legally only have 6 unless we choose to become a group home in which we can have 12. That seems a bit much and isn't something I really see us doing though. God may have other plans for me...but we'll see. I'm just glad to see that we're getting calls and I do believe we'll have our first placements soon...yes I did make that plural. :-)I know in my heart that God has His hand in this and that He will pick the kids for us. Whoever is meant to be with us, will be here.

Anyway, to answer some questions...I do plan on turning my 2 week notice in to Home Depot once we get our first set of placements. I almost turned it in a couple of weeks ago, but I didn't want to rush it and then be sitting here without any placements. So, we made a deal that as soon as we got some kids, I'd go ahead and turn it in.

And we are totally open to sibling groups which is what our calls that we've received have both been for. I think it's important that sib groups can stay together as much as they can. I've been worrying about some things, but like I told my Mom yesterday when I was talking to her about everything, that I also know that I've been praying through all this and I'll continue to pray and hand my worries over to God and that it's going to be an adjustment period for all of us and I just really want to make the kids as comfortable as I can and help them through their grieving and healing as much as possible.

Even Deidra has been so wonderful and thoughtful. When we got the call about the girls, I had gone into her room after we had been waiting for the call back to put her to bed to find that she had picked a few of her stuffed animals out and put them on her bed in a line. I asked her what all that was for and she said "Mom, I picked these out for the little girl to choose one. She's probably lonely and this will give her something to cuddle." She's going to do great at this sister thing.


Update/We got a call!

they wound up not needing a home for them afterall. However, she did tell us about 2 boys that are 5 and 6 that are no longer doing visits that need a home. The only concern that I had about them is that one has asthma and needs inhaler treatments as needed. The other one has a g-tube, but the doctor is recommending it to be taken out as he continues therapy. I think I'd be ok dealing with that as long as someone went over care with me. I didn't know since we had cats if that would be an issue. So, she has put out a call to his caseworker to see. If it's not an issue, we just may get them. The funny thing is that their names are what we had picked out for a first and middle name if our daughter was a boy. With it being a holiday weekend though...I'm thinking we won't know anything until possibly Tuesday. Lord, I pray for these boys and if it be your wish, I pray that they will be here with us! This could really turn out to be an adoptive situation since they are no longer doing visits and their situation just really touched my heart.


Thursday, May 24, 2007

We got a call!

For a baby that was just born last month as well as for a little girl who just turned 7! I am thrilled! She said that they're inputting paperwork into the computer and she asked me how we were as far as transportation and said that she'd call us back if everything works out. YEAH!


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Please let our homestudy be turned in soon...

The social worker that did our home study said she was going to try to have it in last Monday. This week, she told the family recruiter that she'd have it in my this week Monday. Here it's already Wednesday and I just found out that it hasn't been turned in yet. I thought it had already been turned in. It's making me nervous to wait. The family recruiter said she didn't know what was going on either and has emailed the social worker to find out when it's going to be. I hope she didn't mean this coming Monday. Please let our report get turned in this week, Abba. We are ready to receive the kids. Granted, we'll have a lot of organizing to do once we get them as we don't know who we're getting and what age they are. I'll be all set on clothes for the girls, but I don't have anything for boys so we'll have to go to the store. I have an infant car seat, but I don't have anything else besides the booster seat that Deidra still rides in. And we have a crib and a toddler bed, but we'll have to go buy bunk beds if their old enough for those. It's good that I already know what I'm getting if needed. It's just a matter of getting the kids.

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Trying to wait patiently...

The family recruiter told us that our home study was submitted for approval and that we could possibly have some kids by the end of this week. I'm trying to wait patiently for the phone to ring, but I am so excited that I can hardly wait. Please give us some kids this week, Abba. I can't wait and I know Deidra is getting anxious too. She even brought me some baby brushes that she had bought with her allowance money for the babies if we get them. So precious!

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Prayers for my little brother, Jimmie and my Mom

Hi Abba. I'd like to lift up my little brother, Jimmie to you. He broke his leg the week before last and they've had him in a cast. He went back to the doctor today to get the new cast and they want to do surgery on Friday now. Jimmie is nervous as he's never had surgery or anything before. My Mom is nervous because it's surgery and this is her baby. She also made mention that she was going to try to move her doctor's appt that she had coming up next week because she didn't know how well Jimmie was going to be doing, but I told her that I'd go and sit with Jimmie...she's not cancelling her doctor's appt. She's been having weird pains for a few months in one side of her back in the kidney area and when we talked about it a couple of month's ago, I told her she needed to get her butt into the doctor. She's made excuses about maybe it's just dehydration or she needs to drink more water. She wanted to see if it got better over time. It just came up again a couple of weeks ago and I told her that she needed to be seen about it and have some tests done. So, when I found out that she had made the appt, but now was thinking about moving it, I wasn't going to let her do it. I pray that nothing serious is wrong and that it's something that can be treated easily. I get scared just thinking about it. Please cover our family with your blessings, Abba.

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Yeah...we're only going to be here another 6 months...

and what did I decide to do today?

Well, I was going to take a couple of hours and scrapbook since I need to try and get Deidra's book caught before we get the foster kids (she said we could possibly have some kids by the end of the week) and I was getting my pics out and realized that I needed to get her yearly pics that I had set to the side in picture frames so I can do my picture wall like I wanted. I can't wait until I have a staircase to put them down...anyway....I wound up running up to Wal-mart to get frames to put them in. I came home and was putting them in one by one and I just sat there looking at her pretty little face (I'm her Mom, I may be a little biased...but hey I can't help it...I think she's just beautiful) and I can't get over how much she's grown up. Now to find her newborn pic, 1 year, 2year, and 3 year and I'll have them all to put on the wall. I think I know where they are....I just need to go dig them out.

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'Twas the Night Before Jesus Came

"Twas the night before Jesus came and all through the
Not a creature was praying, not one in the house.
Their Bibles were lain on the shelf without care
In hopes that Jesus would not come there.

The children were dressing to crawl into bed,
Not once ever kneeling or bowing a head.
And Mom in her rocker and baby on her lap
Was watching the Late Show while I took a nap.

When out of the East there arose such a clatter,
I sprang to my feet to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash!

When what to my wondering eyes should appear
But angels proclaiming that Jesus was here.
With a light like the sun sending forth a bright ray
I knew in a moment this must be THE DAY!

The light of His face made me cover my head.
It was Jesus! Returning just like He had said.
And though I possessed worldly wisdom and wealth,
I cried when I saw Him in spite of myself.

In the Book of Life which He held in His hand,
Was written the name of every saved man.
He spoke not a word as He searched for my name;
When He said, "It's not here," my head hung in shame.

The people whose names had been written with love
He gathered to take to His Father above.
With those who were ready He rose without a sound
While all the rest were left standing around.

I fell to my knees, but it was too late;
I had waited too long and thus sealed my fate.
I stood and I cried as they rose out of sight;
Oh, if only I had been ready tonight.

In the words of this poem the meaning is clear;
The coming of Jesus is drawing near.
There's only one life and when comes the last call
We'll find that the Bible was true after all!



John 6:40
For my Father's will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.

Father God, never let me get to the point of unbelief. I have seen hardened hearts, and I don't want that to be me. I have found You to be believable in the past--and I know You will be in the future, too. Amen.

I got to thinking one day over something that I read...they were posing the question "When did you know that you believed in God?" I can't honestly answer that question with a certain point in my life that I just said "I believe." I do know that we went to church (Christian Reformed) with my grandparents when I was little. When my Mom died, we stopped going or maybe we stopped before then...I can't honestly remember...but I don't remember going after she died. Anyway, when my Dad remarried I used to always ask to go to Church and so we started going again to a little non-denominational church. We quit going again some time later and we started going to the Catholic church along with a friend of mine and her family when I was in 6th grade. We went to the traditional Latin mass where my brother, Zach, and I were baptized, and I received my first Communion. My parents had their marriage blessed in that Church and my Dad was baptized there and later I received my confirmation there. I think my parents did too. We became very close with our priest, Father Batory. He'd come over to our house a lot and we really enjoyed his friendship. Later there was a big fallout, and Father left and my Dad stopped going to church over it. My mom later stopped going too.

I started going by myself. Later work got in the way, and I quit going for a long time. Then, Andy and I got married and we fought over which church to go to. We were married in a Presbyterian church with a Presbyterian minister and a Catholic priest. We started alternating Sundays from going to the Cathedral and then to the Presbyterian church, but the Cathedral was what I was most comfortable with and where I truly felt God's presence. The fights continued and finally we stopped going to Church altogether to avoid fighting.

When I found out about my infertility, I went through a lot of emotions. All I ever wanted to be was a mother. I went through phases of needing God, and then being so mad at him over everything that I pushed myself further and further away. But, during that journey, I also learned that I couldn't make it through everything without Him. So, my faith started to grow again. When, I found out that we were expecting our little Deidra, I told Andy that I thought we needed to get ourselves back into church so that we could start her off the right way in Church and we needed to set an example for her by showing that it was important to be there and that our faith was important. It took awhile for us to find a church in which we were comfortable...she was baptized in the little church down the street from where we lived in IL...however that really didn't feel like home. A friend on a mailing list introduced us to St. John Neumann in IL and we started going there. Andy went through RCIA classes to see about the Catholic church and wound up joining the church all on his own. Our fighting stopped and I truly felt like we became one in our worship.

When we moved back to MI, we once again struggled to find a church and we didn't make it all but a few times to Sunday mass. He wasn't comfortable with going back to the traditional Latin mass that I had been in and we couldn't find another catholic church that felt like home to us.

When we moved to Texas, it was a no brainer...we had visited Mom's church many times and we just knew that we would go there and we've hardly missed a Sunday. I miss the most and that's only because of working Sundays, which I'm trying to get away from. We like our little church that we go too and it's convenient too since we pretty much live a hop, skip, and a jump away and we can walk right down our driveway, up the street, and right into the Church's parking lot.

So, while I can't pinpoint an exact time that I started believing in God...I think I just always have. I've always loved going to Church even as a little girl and my now Mom will even say that I had a part in getting her back into Church as I was always asking to go. Yes, there have been moments in my life where I have questioned things or my faith has faltered a bit, I've always come back knowing that I need God in my life and I have to say that things go much better that way. He loves to spend time with us too and He wants to know us and us to know, I am trying to spend more time in prayer and in His Word.

Anyone want to join me in my challenge to myself in spending at least 10-15 minutes a day with Him for a minimum of 30 days?


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Missing Package...

I mailed out a lot of 84 vintage romance novels on May 2nd through the post office to VA. Delivery confirmation shows that they arrived in MD on the 7th and that's all we know. Please let this package arrive at it's destination in VA soon. The guy is upset and filed a claim with paypal and I've done everything that I can think of on my end to find it. The post office is telling me multiple different things (it depends on who you talk to.) They keep telling me that media mail is given lowest priority and can take awhile and that it isn't lost yet. I already knew that about media mail...I just want to find out what is going on as it should have moved by now, although I'm wondering if they just haven't scanned it or something as I know they don't have to scan those labels either. I was going to refund him as he said he would repay me if it showed up, but then I found out that he escalated it to a claim and paypal has taken the money from my I told the guy that I wasn't going to refund him on top of this as then I'd be out double the money. I don't blame him for being upset...his post office is telling him one thing...mine is telling him another...he's had bad experiences with the post office before...I haven't had a lost package in forever...I just hope and pray that it will be delivered to him soon so that I can be done messing around with this.


Beautiful Package, Beautiful Gift

My Mom got me a bible a few years ago for my 25th birthday. It's the Woman Thou Art Loosed Edition. It has some wonderful little "pearls" and stories to help you understand the verses better. Since I took my prayer for my friends in my previous entry from Colossians 1:9-12, I saw in my Bible the little pearl that she gives "Put the truth in your spirit and feed, nurture, and allow it to grow. Quit telling yourself, "You're too fat, too old, too late, or too ignorant." Stop feeding yourself that garbage.

With that comes a story taken from Colossians 1:9-11 that I thought I would share with you.

Beautiful Package,
Beautiful Gift
Colossians 1:9-11

The greater part of your attractiveness--the part that draws or attracts other people to you--is on the inside, not on your flesh. Our society spends billions of dollars a year to convince you to buy hundreds, even thousands of dollars worth of clothes and makeup in order to fix up something that doesn't really matter all that much. We spend countless hours at beauty salons and spas and malls in order to buy, acquire, or create the things we think will draw other people to us, but which actually have very little drawing power. What you create or design on the outside of yourself may turn a head or two, but it is powerless to turn a mind or a heart.

You are bombarded daily with messages that tell you that if you will only go to the right weight-loss center and get down to the right size, dye your hair the right shade, go to the right spa, use the right toothpaste, put on the right makeup, wear the right outfit at the right time, and be seen in the right places with the right people, then you will most certainly be able to attract the right man and have the right children and live in the right neighborhood and enjoy the right kind of life!

When we do this and nothing "right" happens for us, we are puzzled. We sit back and ask, "What went wrong?" This is what went wrong: We became the merchandise for those who tried to sell us the merchandise. We've been had! The average women, Christians included, will spend thousands of dollars this year on hats and hair color, earrings and evening dresses. Sadly, they will make no real investment to build up or support those inner qualities that truly attract others to us and to Jesus Christ our Savior.

If you are only concerned with what you look like, you are going to be a very shallow, superficial person. People are going to find that once they have quit playing with you, the box you came in was beautifully wrapped, but empty.

Go back to the source of your attractiveness--the Holy Spirit of God. He is the One who woos and wins the heart. When you are His woman, He will draw you to the right people for the right purposes at just the right time.

My reflections:
This reminds me of some conversations that I had in high school with some friends. We were all talking about boys...some of us had that knack for picking the wrong person to have a crush on...that someone that would never even give us the time of day. I can remember thinking sometimes and some of my girlfriends and I even talked about this: "Would you rather have the girlfriend that is really pretty but a real witch, or would you rather have the girlfriend that has a wonderful heart and is pretty on the inside, but isn't totally hot on the outside?" I've let myself go physically and I'm trying to get it back. I don't see anything wrong with that, but at the same time, I never want to let my spirit on the inside go...I want to be the person that everyone likes and I know there's always room to improve my is truly what is on the inside that counts.


A Prayer For All Seasons

Colossians 1:9
Since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding.

I would like to lift up my friends to you, Abba. I pray that they will have the spiritual wisdom and understanding that they need to know God's will. That they will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please him, in all respects. That my friends will be bearing fruit in all good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. That they will be strengthened with all power...for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience. I give thanks to You for all that You have given me and for the many friends that you have given me the gift of having. I lift up all of my friends to you, Abba, and I pray that you will shower all of them with your many blessings.

Prayer pushes the light and hope
into little dark corners of your life.


Standing by My God

Father God, may I never forget to call on You in every situation. I want to call on You every day of my life and bring before You my adoration, confession, thanksgiving, and supplication. Thank You for being within the sound of my voice and only a thought's distance away.

I haven't always been the best at remembering to make time for you each and every day. I'm going to try to remember to spend time in Your Word and in prayer every day even if it's just for a little while. I got a book the other day on 15 minute devotions and I'm going to try and do them each day.

Thank you God for creating our universe and us and our families. Help us always to take the time to see the beauty in your creations.

Thank you God for all that you have done for me and my family. Thank you for all that you continue to do for us and for all that you will do in our future.

I want to say I'm sorry for all that I have done wrong and I pray for your forgiveness and keep me always close to you.

I pray for my family and for our friends and I pray that you will help them in all their needs. I pray that you will bring the flocks that have fallen away back to You and that they will come to know Jesus as their Savior.

I pray for the government officials, for our military personnel, for our priests and church officers, for our missionaries and other Christian servents that you will always guide them and keep them safe from harms way.

I also pray for all the unborn and unwanted babies and lift them up to You. I also pray for Deidra and her class, for her teachers, and for her friends and that you will keep them safe throughout the day.

I also pray for myself and that you will guide me throughout this day. Help me to do Your will give me opportunities to serve You throughout the day.


The Power of Prayer

I got up early one morning and rushed into the day;
I had so much to accomplish that I didn't have time to

Problems just tumbled about me, and heavier came
each task.
"Why doesn't God help me?" I wondered. He
answered, "You didn't ask."

I wanted to see joy and beauty, but the day toiled on,
gray and bleak;
I wondered why God didn't show me. He said, "But
you didn't seek."

I tried to come into God's presence, I used all my
keys at the lock.
God gently and lovingly chided, "My child, you
didn't knock."

I woke up early this morning, and paused before
entering the day;
I had so much to accomplish that I had to take time to

--Author Unknown


The peanut is back at school...

The doctor said she could go back to school today as long as she still wasn't running a fever. She still felt a little warm to me, but the thermometer gave her a normal temp. She said her throat still hurt, but that she wanted to go to school. We got her antibiotics and motrin down her and she drank a few sips of gatorade. I think if it wasn't the last couple days of school, I would have kept her home one more day. I just don't want her to miss the last couple of days of school. She only goes for a full day tomorrow and then a half day on Thursday and she's done. I can't believe that she's officially going to be a first grader.

We went and signed her up last week for Brownies/Girl Scouts and on Saturday morning we went and signed her up for Pee Wee Cheerleading. Andy was kinda miffed at how expensive it was to sign her up and we still have her uniform to buy. It was just an expense that caught us off guard since we didn't realize that there was a fee to sign her up, but I told him that when you look at all what it covers...I can understand why it's so much. He got over it pretty quickly...we had the money to pay for it...he just had to revamp the budget to show it. He thought though that I was just signing her up for so much stuff that she was going to be busy. I told him that it's only 3 things since she still goes to Gymnastics once a week. I'd rather have her be involved in good things rather than get bored and get involved in the wrong things throughout school. I remember doing Brownies when I was a kid and it's something she wants to do. The cheerleading is something that she's begged to be able to do ever since we moved down here. She's definitely got lots of energy and I think she'll not only make a cute cheerleader, but a good one.

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Monday, May 21, 2007

Blueberry White Tea

is my new passion. :-) Deidra's home from school...I just took her to the doctor. Poor honey has strep throat and a touch of the flu. She's also on the verge of being dehydrated. My ears are bothering me and my throat is scratchy so it wouldn't surprise me if I'm the next one to come down with this. While I was getting all of Deidra's stuff at the pharmacy...her amoxycillin, more motrin and tylenol, pedialyte, ice cream, Sprite, and popsicles, I decided that I needed to get some Arizona blueberry white tea since it had "antioxidant" on the label. It is delicious and reminds me of the tea that I always get when I go to Chili's. I think I'm going to e-mail Andy to go pick me up a couple more bottles on the way home from work. This stuff is delish!

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Sunday, May 20, 2007

Please help Deidra to feel better by morning...

Abba, please help Deidra to feel better by morning. We just went to Savannah's birthday party (she's one of the girls in Deidra's class) and she started complaining that her throat hurt. Mine has been scratchy due to allergies, so I didn't really think much of it since we're all suffering from allergies right now. Anyway, she started feeling warm, but I thought it was just due to the fact that she was running around and jumping all over the place at Pump It Up (this play place with huge inflatable play stuff). Anyway, we got home and she wanted me to take her temperature and she's got a fever of 102.5. This is her last week of school, so I just pray that she's feeling better by tomorrow. I just gave her some motrin before she went to bed. Thanks Abba for watching over her and we pray that she's feeling better by tomorrow morning when it's time to go to school.


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Homestudy approval...

I e-mailed the family recruiter today to make sure that she received the last of the documents that we needed last week. I had put them on her chair for her since she was out of the office. She e-mailed me back saying that she got everything and had sent our file over for auditing to make sure that everything was in. She said that all they were waiting on now was home study approval from the agency director. Please let us be approved soon and let those placements start coming. I am so ready and I know that Deidra is too. Andy is patiently waiting...

Thank you, Abba, for all that you have blessed us with. Our family is just so blessed....


I'll write more about Deidra's graduation later...

I'll write more about Deidra's graduation later when I have time to get her picture edited and the videos that we took up online, but I am so very proud of her and they were so precious. They played the song "There are Angels Among Us" when they started walking in and my eyes immediately teared up. I sat there choked up and when I saw her walk in, the tears started to fall. Andy totally didn't understand my emotions, but hey I'm the momma and my little girl is growing up. I was doing a lot better once their program started and she was waving at me from the bleachers. I am so blessed to be her momma. I wouldn't trade her for anything. I had to laugh too when the first thing she asked me afterwards was "Did you cry?" That little stinker....

My Mom told me last night that by the time she graduates from high school, we'll be glad that she's done...and we won't be sad about it. I told her I didn't know about that one...I cried a little bit at my own high school graduation. I can see me crying at hers.

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Everything went well...

with the mortgage lady. And even better...we found out that we didn't need my income to if I do decide that I want to quit altogether, I totally can. YEAH!

Thank you, Abba, for letting things go so smoothly.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Meeting with the mortgage lender today...

to do our full loan application. I hope we remembered everything that we have to bring. She had already done our fast app with us and given us our pre-approval. I'm praying that we'll get a good mortgage rate and that our mortgage monthly payment won't be too bad. Abba, please help everything to go smoothly for us.


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Sometimes it really strikes me at how intuitive Deidra can really be...

I took Deidra last week to get a slush from Braums. We were being silly and just singing in the car. Then, she starts this conversation with me.

Deidra: It seems to me that some people don't want their kids.

Me: What? (Thinking, did I just hear that right?)

Deidra: It seems to me that people just don't want their kids.

Me: What makes you say that?

Deidra: Well, we wouldn't have foster care or adoption if people wanted them.

Me: Well, honey that doesn't always mean that people don't love their children. But sometimes people realize that they can't care for their children or give them what they really need to have a good life, so they give them up to people that can do those things.

Deidra: Well, when I have my kids I'm not ever going to do that. I'm going to be like you and be a good mom that I can count on and I'm going to repeat that pattern to be a good mom.

I was shocked to hear that conversation...we haven't talked to her about the patterns of abuse that some families go through or anything, so I was shocked to hear her use that phrase of repeating patterns. But, I am glad that she sees that she has a good pattern to follow and that instills in me that we must always set a good example for her to follow in all areas of our family life. Granted, I think we do anyway, but it just really shocked me at how intuitive she can be with some of this stuff. She came up with this all on her own...out of the mouth of a 6-year-old. This is some of the stuff that makes me so very proud of her.

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So, Deidra thinks I'm a sap...

We got her graduation pictures a couple of weeks ago...I cried just looking at them. Her response: "Mommy, why are you crying? They're just pictures. You're a baby."

I get the letters talking about how graduation day (tomorrow morning) is going to play out. I start tearing up. Her response: "Mommy, why are you being a baby?"

I listen to her reading her books outloud and sometimes the tears just fall down my cheeks. Her response: "Mommy, what is the matter with you?" I just have to hug her and tell her that sometimes words just cannot express how very proud of her that I am.

She comes home with her yearbook today and we went looking through it together...she's in there quite a few times for her accomplishments throughout the year. The tears started running down my cheeks and we get to the last page and there's a picture of her with 2 boys from her class in the hallway with the caption "Look out world, this is the class of 2019." That one I had to chuckle at through my tears. Her response: "Mommy, are you crying AGAIN?"

I put her on my lap and told her that being a Mommy is one of my proudest accomplishments and that I am just so very proud of her and so blessed that she is in my life. I told her that we were so excited to find out that we were having her, but yet I never knew the emotions that would hit me later when I saw her little face for the first time and that sometimes when people tell me about all the good things she does or the heart that she has that I do fight tears sometimes because sometimes words just don't express the love that I have for her. She says to me "Mama, you're just a big baby." To that, I responded with a hug and a "maybe, I am...but don't you ever doubt how much I love you even if I do cry sometimes." Her response..."Mama, I love you too."


Deidra's Mother's Day Poems to Me

(I left her creative spellings in)

My Mom

My mom is 24 years old.
My mom's favorite food is cracers.
My mom's favorite color is green.
My mom's favorite store is H-E-B.
At work my mom helps.
At home my mom cleens.
My mom likes to watch the Nooze on tv.
Together we like to play.
My mom is soooo special because she is nicee.
Deidra Hoffman loves her mom!

I Love You Poem

My mom likes to cumputer.
My mom likes to play.
She also likes to go to the prak.
She is great in every way.

I like the way mom acts.
I like the way she shares.
She always tries to help.
And I know she really cares.

My mom is really pritee.
She's nis, yes, it's true.
That's why I want to tell you, Mom,
Just how much I love you.


On the back, she had written

"My Mom is sooo speshille to me. Thanks for being a mom that I can count on."

How cute is she?

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Our House Video

We were out at the showroom on Saturday picking out our colors and upgrades and all that fun stuff and we asked if there was a model of the home we had chosen anywhere. The ones we had seen at our location are very similar, but we hadn't seen our exact floor plan since we first saw the house for sale that we fell in love with that was taken off the market. Anyway, there was one near Fort Worth, so we drove out there and Andy got this video to show everyone the house and the floor plan. If everything goes as planned, we should be ready to move in by October. We'll send the pics of our lot later.

Here's the website link if you want to take a look.

Abba, please continue to let everything go smoothly throughout the process of building our home.


Friday, May 11, 2007

I pray that I am not getting sick...

I've had a tickle in my throat all week long. I think it's just allergies. Today, I've been feeling a little nauseated on and off and I've been coughing. I pray that it's just allergies and that I'm not getting sick. If I am, please help me keep it away from Deidra. I don't want it to affect her perfect attendance at school and she graduates from kindergarten on Wednesday.


Grateful Friday

My faith...I couldn't get through all that I have without God.

That are homestudy is done and we have everything turned in and we are ready for placements.

For our new house that we are building.

For my very smart little girl. She just got tested on her reading level. She just had to be at a level 2 to leave kindergarten and they said that by the time she leaves first grade she'll need to be at a level 16. Well, she tests at a level 10 right now and her teacher said that if we keep working with her over the summer, she'll move up a couple of levels. Her school has an advanced reading program and will more than likely hook her up with a reading buddy from 2nd grade if she continues to do well like this. I am so excited for her.

For my wonderful husband. He's awesome...and so very supportive of all that I want out of life. I'm glad that we can share our dreams together.

That this is my last day of work for the next 7 days. :-)

Thank you, Abba, for blessing our family.


Thursday, May 10, 2007

Finished up the homestudy...

We passed our homestudy. She's going to write up the report this weekend and have it in to Amy by Monday. She said we will more than likely be licensed right way and she licensed us for 4 children based on the size of our home. We could have some placements as early as next week. We are excited. The homestudy wasn't bad at all either, which was a huge relief.

Thank you, Abba, for being with us through this.


Our first homestudy visit is tonight...

Our first home study visit is tonight and I am already nervous. I have butterflies just thinking about it. I know everyone gets nervous about this part. I just hope that Leslee likes us and that things go well. I'm hoping that Deidra will cooperate with her part of the interview as well. I told her last night that she needs to answer like a big girl and keep her thumb out of her mouth while she does so. So, I'm hoping that she'll do ok. Heck, I'm hoping that we all do. They tell you that some things will make you blush when you answer and we'll talk about anything and everything...anything and everything we've ever done. So, I'm really hoping that it won't be too bad.

Abba, please be with us tonight and I pray that everything goes smoothly.


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Saint Elizabeth of Hungary

St. Elizabeth of Hungary
November 19 (1207-1231)

Elizabeth was the daughter of the just and pious Andrew II, king of Hungary, the niece of Saint Hedwig, and the sister of the virtuous Bela IV, king of Hungary, who became the father of Saint Cunegundes and of Saint Margaret of Hungary, a Dominican nun. Another of her brothers was Coloman, King of Galicia and prince of Russia, who led an angelic life amid the multiple affairs of the world and the troubles of war.

She was betrothed in infancy to Louis, Landgrave of Thuringia, and brought up from the age of four in his father’s court. Never could she bear to adopt the ornaments of the court for her own usage, and she took pleasure only in prayer. She would remove her royal crown when she entered the church, saying she was in the presence of the Saviour who wore a crown of thorns. As she grew older, she employed the jewels offered her for the benefit of the poor. Not content with receiving numbers of them daily in her palace, and relieving all in distress, she built several hospitals, where she herself served the sick, bathing them, feeding them, dressing their wounds and ulcers. The relatives of her fiancé tried to prevent the marriage, saying she was fit only for a cloister; but the young prince said he would not accept gold in the quantity of a nearby mountain, if it were offered him to abandon his resolution to marry Elizabeth.

Once as she was carrying in the folds of her mantle some provisions for the poor, she met her husband returning from the hunt. Astonished to see her bending under the weight of her burden, he opened the mantle and found in it nothing but beautiful red and white roses, though it was not the season for flowers. He told her to continue on her way, and took one of the marvelous roses, which he conserved all his life. She never ceased to edify him in all of her works. One of her twelve excellent Christian maxims, by which she regulated all her conduct was, “Often recall that you are the work of the hands of God and act accordingly, in such a way as to be eternally with Him.”

When her pious young husband died in Sicily on his way to a Crusade with the Emperor Frederick, she was cruelly driven from her palace by her brother-in-law. Those whom she had aided showed nothing but coldness for her; God was to purify His Saint by harsh tribulations. She was forced to wander through the streets with her little children, a prey to hunger and cold. The bishop of Bamberg, her maternal uncle, finally forced the cruel prince to ask pardon for his ill treatment of her, but she voluntarily renounced the grandeurs of the world, and went to live in a small house she had prepared in the city of Marburgh. There she practiced the greatest austerities. She welcomed all her sufferings, and continued to be the mother of the poor, distributing all of the heritage eventually conceded to her, and converting many by her holy life. She died in 1231, at the age of twenty-four.

St. Elizabeth you are my patron saint for confirmation and yet I couldn't seem to remember your name although I knew your story. It stumped my Mom and I both, yet we could both remember your story....just not your name. I finally found you today. St. Elizabeth please pray for me and I pray that you will always help me to mother the foster children that have been neglected and hurt and to give them comfort and peace and give them all the things that they need to heal.


Which option would you choose?

We went into the showroom and found out that we got a free incentive with signing the contract on our lot. We get to pick 1 of 3 things...we're having trouble deciding on which one to go with. We can get a free garage door opener, a free patio (8x10), or a free landscaping package (6 shrubs and 1 tree). Which one would you take?


Swirling around with different stressors...

Andy took off of work early yesterday since we had to be at the showroom for the house within 48 hours of signing our contract. Wednesdays we have gym, so we couldn't go today and we need to clean the house up for the home study as well on Wednesday. Anyway, we left the house and got a few minutes away and Andy says "Jess, your car is sounding awfully loud." I hadn't noticed anything before then. We proceed down the highway through the construction areas and every so often it would get a little louder. There really wasn't a good spot to pull off the highway. We were almost out to Richmond Hills and we start hearing something dragging and we notice the cars behind us are keeping their distance. We get off at the exit and pull into the showroom parking lot....yup, my muffler is dragging on the ground going right into my tire. Andy fiddles with it for a little bit and we call my Mom to see how to get it off (her working as a parts manager for the Chevy dealership has it's benefits). He can't get it...I was anxious to go in and pick out what we needed to for the house. We picked out some beautiful brick for the house and we got through about 3/4's of the packet that we had for all the options. We are planning on going out again on Saturday and bringing my Mom with us. She's awesome at decorating and I just want to see what she thinks of our choices that we made and make sure that everything we picked will go together. We have to go back and pick our bathroom and wiring choices, but we already have a pretty good idea of what we want.

They closed at 7 and so we had to leave...we fiddled around with my car some more until Andy finally got it off. Then, I just felt stressed about trying to figure out when we could get my car in as I knew that we also needed time to clean up the house for the home study as well today. I thought about calling in, but with how short-handed we are, I just couldn't do that to them. I had such a bad tension headache. Andy finally said that I could take his car to work and to take Deidra to school and he'd get my car in to get fixed. We came up with the plan that if he was still waiting on my car at noon, he'd call work and I'd leave to trade places with him so he could get into work as he had some moves he had to do today.

I went in to work and explained the situation and they were stressing about me having to leave early. I stood out in garden and felt the tension all through my back and head...I started praying and giving my stress to God to handle. It wasn't a half an hour later that Andy called me at the car was already fixed and it was way cheaper than we thought it was going to be. He was going to come and trade cars with me and head into work. Everything totally worked out fine. Thank you so much, Abba, for hearing my prayers. They were relieved at work as well that I didn't need to leave early and now, I just have to worry about getting the house ready for tomorrow. I'm so nervous about the homestudy...I keep telling myself that everything is going to be's just the unknown and not knowing what to expect that makes me nervous.

Abba, I thank you for watching over us and letting the car get fixed so smoothly. I pray that we'll be able to get the house back in order within no time, and that our homestudy will go well tomorrow night.

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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

We are the proud owners of over 7500 square feet of dirt!

Well, we went and signed the contract last night to buy our lot for the house and put the money down on it. So, we are now the proud owners of some really expensive dirt. :-) But, we did get to go put our sold sign out on our dirt and take some pictures of us in front of the sold sign. I'll share those a little later! Our lot is going to be 65 x 117.5 square feet making us the owners of 7637.5 square feet of dirt right now! We're going to the showroom tonight to pick our upgrades and the color of the brick that we want. We are so excited!

Abba, please guide us through this process as well and let everything go smoothly for us. It looks like we'll close sometime in October!


Our homestudy will be this Thursday...

We got the call yesterday! I am so nervous, but yet excited at the same time. She seems really nice though. And the family recruiter reassured me that she was certain that everything would go very smoothly. So, that helped. We just have to give the house a really good touch up on Wednesday night before we all have to go to work and schoool again on Thursday. We'll have one more visit probably after that and then all of our stuff will be sent on to licensing. In just a couple of weeks...we'll be ready to receive our first placement(s). YEAH!

Keep us in your prayers that everything will go smoothly for us if you will. I see no reasons that it shouldn't, but it's the not knowing what to expect that has me all nervous. Abba, please guide us through this process and let everything go smoothly.


Monday, May 07, 2007

We are 92% compatible...


92% Compatible

♥ Jessica and Andrew have been romantically-together for a long time. That alone demonstrates a degree of compatibility. Similar personality descriptions are a plus. Their shared faith will help form a bond between them. Their astrological signs are in harmony, which is a plus. Their common love of animals is another good thing. And their views on children are similar. Overall, Jessica and Andrew are highly compatible. They are capable of having a beautiful relationship together. ♥


Sunday, May 06, 2007

We're writing up the contract...

We're writing up the contract on our lot to build our house tomorrow night. Woo hoo!

Abba, please help everything to go smoothly from start to finish. He said they won't be able to start building for about another 2 months and then it's about 60 days after that to completion. We are so excited and we thank you for your blessings.


Thursday, May 03, 2007

The e-mail from the family recruiter to our actual social worker...

"Andy & Jessica are ready to go on their home study! Hooray…let me know and I can get the file to you this evening or anytime tomorrow."

I can't believe that we're finally ready. I'm both excited and that possible? ;-) I sat looking at their wall of pics today and it just made me all the more excited to get our first placement(s). I so cannot wait. :-) Abba, please help everything to go smoothly for us here on out. I pray for a quick and smooth home study.


We're home free.

I turned in all of our paperwork today. Well, all except for the sheet the school had to sign off on (they wouldn't do it until the kids' are placed) so that's just a note in our file right now. But, now she's turning our file over to the gal who's going to do our homestudy and hopefully our first meeting will be next week. YEAH!

Thank you so much, Abba, for helping us get this all done this week like I had wanted.


Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Help us to get it all finished today...

Well, Andy made the property diagram last night and we e-mailed it to Amy. She was impressed with how professional it looked. I went afterwork and got the dentist's sign off on the medical and dental sheet. I came home and did the training on being the medical consenter so we can make decisions on medical treatment for the children. I just printed off our certificates. We have the rest of our homework to finish up tonight and then I just have to run to Deidra's school and have the principal sign off on the education plan for the children and then we are done. I can run it all over to Amy tomorrow afternoon. We should have our first home visit next week. Wow!

Please help us to get it all done and turned in by tomorrow! Thank you so much, Abba, for helping all the pieces to fall into place.


Happy May! We've been here a year already...

Wow, the first of May marks the one year anniversary of our move down here as a family. I just have to say that we have been so blessed. Andy has found a wonderful company with wonderful people to work for that are just like one big happy family. It's nice to go to work functions of his and have people come up and hug us both just like they have known us forever. This is going to turn out being the best job that he has ever had. He had his review and got his raise and they think he's wonderful and the raise that he got totally reflected that. We never expected the raise that he got. He's been expanding into other areas at work too and they tell him that there's more money out there to be had. I think in another year or so, he'll be making more than he ever did at Siren and that was the highest paying job that he's had yet. I'm not saying that to brag's just nice to see that he's being paid what he's worth again and boy have we learned some things about money then and being debt free. :-) It's nice to see our prayers coming around full circle. I don't think it'll take more than a year to get us down to our debt free goal (well, everything but the house since we're building).

I'm still with Home Depot, but I'm going down to weekends only (if they approve it) the week after Mother's Day. If that's not approved, my last day will be the 11th. But, that gets me one step closer to my goal of returning home again full-time. Really the only thing keeping me there is the insurance that I have for Deidra and I since Andy's family plan at work is so expensive. I'm checking into individual policies that all may change too. I absolutely cannot wait until we begin our foster/adopt journey with our placement(s). I make that plural as we have said that we would take 2-3 and we are open to sibling groups. So, we'll see what God has in store for us. We all are pretty excited about it.

Deidra has been doing awesome at kindergarten this year and is quite the sponge. I love listening to her read and how well she's doing with it. She graduates from kindergarten on the 16th and I get emotional just thinking about it. I am so very proud of her! She's one little girl with a very very big heart too and she can't wait until the kid(s) come to our house. I think she's going to make one very loving big sister. We try to prepare her as much as we can and she really is getting it. She's very excited.

We're still planning on building our house too...we're waiting for the final verdict to come from the landlord on whether we can really do a 6-month lease so that we can go soon and put the money down for the lot. I'm so excited about that!

God has really blessed us here and it really is neat to see all the things that we have prayed for over the past 2-3 years come full circle. We miss our family and friends back in MI...that's the only bad part. But, Texas has been wonderful and we don't regret the move. It's all been good...


Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Almost home free...

This was the e-mail that I just received from our social worker...

We just need the property diagram, education plan, child doctor/dentist, PRIDE homework, Medical Consent, and the policies packet I need to give you. Then you’ll be home free!

YEAH!!! I should have everything done by Friday!!! Andy's going to do up the property diagram for me tonight. I'm taking the education sheet into the school on Thursday morning, the dentist just needs to sign off on his portion on Thursday, we're going to finish up our homework this week, the Medical consent training is 3 hours so I'm going to do my best to do that on Thursday...and the policies packet is being printed I just need to sign that once she has it. Then, we're ready for our homestudy! We're hoping to get the first visit scheduled for next week! YEAH!!!!

Thank you, Abba...I was so worried about those criminal history checks. We got the one from MI and they said not to worry about the one from IL. She said the central registry clearances from each state should be all we need. I'm so thankful that we don't have to waste more time waiting for that.


Am I always going to feel like this...

Why does it still feel like such a stab in the heart when I find out that someone is pregnant? I wish them all well, but why does it have to hurt like it does? Everytime I think I finally make my peace if it never happens for us again, I find out that someone is expecting and it's such a stab in the heart. I saw this really pregnant lady at Home Depot today and I asked her when she was due and I started thinking about my crazy cycle lately (the spotting off an on and the barely there periods) and wondering what was going on with me. One of the head cashiers is pregnant and it hasn't bothered me too badly, although I do wish her whole situation was a bit better for her. That's a whole other story though. She's a sweet girl though and I wish her all the best. I got home from work and my cousin, April, had e-mailed me (we haven't really talked since I moved, but we were close when she was pregnant with Logan and I got to see her and the baby the day that she had him)...anyway she's pregnant with baby #2 and it's a girl. She's going to have her the day before my birthday. I'm happy for her and her husband, I just didn't expect to feel the way that I still hurts to find stuff like this out. Is it always going to feel like this?

Andy and I aren't using birth control...we haven't in quite some time. Part of me wonders if I lose this extra weight if it will help us to be able to get pregnant. I guess I need to do it while I am still able to have kids age-wise so I'll never have any regrets or wonders. We'll just have to see. In the meantime, I am completely ready to start fostering/adopting and I am so hoping for babies. I think that will totally help...but I would like to be pregnant again someday too.