Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Loving My New Toy

I LOVE my new toy....LOVE IT!!!! Spring has sprung here in the south and it was the perfect day to play with my new toy. We headed for NB and one of the most beautiful parks I have ever visited. It was a gorgeous day...just wonderful. I shot over 400 pictures. I am still in auto mode, trying to focus on the "law of thirds" today. I think I got some pretty good shots, and can't wait to fly solo with the settings.

Here are few samplings....

Check out the drop of it! I like water fowl too by the way.

Isn't she a beauty.

I love this it.

Yeah...she's a beauty Grace.

Sweet baby tootsies.

Oh my goodness...have you ever seen such cuteness? was HOT today....

My son, my oldest, my love.

Joe cool Noah...what a handsome guy.

See spring has come.

How cool is this leaf? Honestly God is so amazingly creative.
I Love Him :)

Sweet doe eyed baby face, smacking her lips on a snickerdoodle.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Food For Thought

I read this post yesterday and it gave me much food for thought.

Obviously Richard and I are pro adoption. If you have ever met my husband face to face, then he has asked you, point blank when you are going to adopt. I often wonder if people understand why he does this. I know why. I know it is because he has experienced first hand the immense blessings that come along with adoption. Not just the blessing of having children, although that is indeed a rich blessing. He has experience God in ways that he could have never imagined. He understands what James 1:27 means to the fullest extent. He wants that for everyone. He has also seen first hand, thanks to his wife, the incredible need for parents for orphans.

The mentioned post hit the nail on the head, at least for us. The question we have asked ourselves over and over again is, "What did God mean when He said to care for the orphan?" I wish I knew. One thing I am sure of is that I don't think it was His plan that they be in an orphanage, with barely enough food to survive, and only in the best of cases an education. I just don't believe He meant for us to care for orphans by sending a check for $35 a month to some child in a third world country. Nice, neat, and tidy. No strings attached....I sent my check and did my duty. Should we send checks? Of course. The question we need to ask ourselves is if sending the check is enough.

According t0 Strong's concordance the word visit means "to inspect, i.e. by implication to select, to go to see, relieve:-look out, visit.

The same word is used only three other times in the New Testament.

Acts 7:23 During Stephen's preaching just prior to his death, speaking about Moses, said, "When he was forty years old, it came into his heart to visit his brothers, the children of Israel."

Acts 15:14 James speaking after Barnabas and Paul finished speaking says, "Simon has related how God visited the Gentiles, to take from them a people for His own name."

Acts 15:36 "And after some days Paul said to Barnabas, let us return and visit the brothers in every city where we proclaimed the word of the Lord."

In every one of these passages the word visit implies a very hands on approach. They literally went and saw in all three verses. Moses, Paul, and Barnabas went and visited. God Himself went one step further, and came and "visited" us, not only to see us, to walk among us, but to take for Himself a people for His own name. He didn't just come to ease our suffering. He didn't just provide food, shelter, clothing, education, and the like. He chose for Himself a people for His own name.

He adopted us.

I don't know if adoption is a command. Perhaps some more diligent study of God's word will reveal that to me. What I do know is that caring for the orphan means so much more than money. Just as our greatest need was not material comforts and provision, theirs is a greater need as well. "God sets the lonely in families." (Psalm 68.6) The greatest thing God did for me was place me in His family. Adopting me and giving me His name. A name by which every knee will bow, and every tongue confess that He is Lord. What an inheritance. I get the impression from His word that it was his pleasure to do so, after all, Jesus, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross. (Hebrews 12:2) What was His joy? His redeemed people. His joy was fulfilling the will of His Father.

I am so thankful that the Lord did not just see fit to provide for my physical needs, but instead "visited me in my distress."

Adopted me

and made me His own.

James 1:27 (Young's Literal Translation)
27religion pure and undefiled with the God and Father is this, to look after orphans and widows in their tribulation -- unspotted to keep himself from the world.

James 1:27 (Amplified Bible)
27External [a]religious worship [[b]religion as it is expressed in outward acts] that is pure and unblemished in the sight of God the Father is this: to visit and help and care for the orphans and widows in their affliction and need, and to keep oneself unspotted and uncontaminated from the world.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Not Me Monday

Welcome to Not Me! Monday! This blog carnival was created by MckMama. You can head over to her blog to read what she and everyone else have not been doing this week.

I do not have a child, who for a week solid has complained of stomach aches ONLY AT BED TIME. If I had a child like this, they would never get out of bed smiling and laughing, tummy ache gone as soon as she was out of bed. Since I don't have a child like this, I would NEVER give said child a terrible tasting herb to "get rid of her belly ache." I would never suspect such antics to be only a ploy to get out of bed.

After I did not do the above mentioned act, the said child's siblings did not, in complete hysteria, nearly on the floor from laughter, tell me I was mean. They did not proceed to ask their sister if her belly still hurt, and if she needed some more medicine. Strangely, the medicine worked in record time. After only one minute her belly ache was completely cured, and a second dose was not needed.

After said child was in bed, my beloved did not ask, "Are you going to bottle and market a child's fake illness herb?" Seriously, he would know that there would be no market for such things.

While trying to write and edit a blog post this week, I did not in frustration let out a yell of complete frustration and anger. Truly, I think blogger is wonderful. Since I did not scream "Arrrrguh!!!" at the top of my lungs, my children could never, in unison, from the next room, yell ,"I HATE BLOGGER!" then collapse with laughter. Since I have NEVER lost my cool with blogger in the past, they would have no way of knowing what I was angry about.

I did not master the art of going to the bathroom standing up after a hour long session of body pump. After all, I am in such svelte physical condition that those 75+ squats had no effect on me whatsoever. So getting up and down from a sitting problem. Therefore going to the bathroom was no problem at all.

I did not just post on my blog that I can now pee standing up, that would be so embarrassing.

After writing the above sentence I did not immediately think of my friend Shara, and her bathroom problems. Even as she reads this she is blushing, thinking, "I can't believe she told the world I have bathroom problems!" So I DO feel the need to clarify, that her problems consist only of the fact that she actually goes to the bathroom. Very touchy subject it is. I still feel the need to get her the book Everybody Pees.

Ahh, laughter. I needed some...and now I feel better indeed.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Melissa Needs

Keltie (who you should be praying for by the way, this girl needs children and she needs them now) posted this idea on her blog. I had heard of this before, but had never done it. I have decided that 9 loads of laundry is enough for one week... and as a consequence I also decided to participate in this silly little game.

Google "Melissa needs" and post what comes up.

1. Melissa needs to take a break....see 9 loads IS enough laundry for one week!

2. Melissa needs to board the blob ship hovering overhead. Umm, I don't really
care for travel.

3. Lot's of guidance. Amen to that.

4. Help. Nuff said.

5. Hydration.

6. A roof.

7. To find a new agent. I am positive this should read "new adoption AGENCY."

8. Someone to show her she's worthy. Hmm, I didn't realize I was feeling unworthy...but please bring on the compliments...just in case it's true. You know how important self esteem is these days.

9. Flakes. Snow flakes? Cheesy friends? Dandruff...I don't know, what kind of flakes do I need?

10. To get on board with her new body. New body...I'd love to get on board...but I must have misplaced that new body of mine, cause all I can find is this old one.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Hair Affair Part 2

Continuing from yesterdays post on skin and hair care for lovely brown skinned children...did you do your research? Are you convinced to never, ever put petrol on your darlings again? Good, then we can continue with our lesson :)

I have a confession, even though I KNOW all to well the information presented in yesterdays post...I am cheap frugal. I began looking for good products with healthy and safe ingredients long before we left for Uganda. In fact, I found it to be a useful way to pass those LONG drawn out days waiting to leave. Guess what I found out...the good stuff...EXPENSIVE. "You've got to be kidding me!" I said to my beloved. Who in their right mind would spend $18 for 8 ounces of conditioner. Not me that's for darn sure. So I would go to the store and peruse the "ethnic" hair section and read the labels. They made me cringe with disgust. I was afraid the chemicals might leach right through the bottle and contaminate me. I would quickly put them back on the self and would come home and search the net again. I repeated this process several times. Then it was the day before we were to leave for Africa...and I had nothing for their hair. Off to the store again, this time purchasing the cheapest stuff on the shelf, convincing myself it would only be until we got home. Once home, I found that the good stuff had not gotten any cheaper...and I was as cheap as ever. So I kept right on buying the yucky stuff, complaining every time. My beloved, who is the only person I know cheaper than me...finally got fed up and said buy the good stuff. So finally in October, I lost my mind and spent $18 EACH on 4 eight ounce containers of "good stuff" that came highly recommend by several other mommies. I could hardly wait for it to arrive...that is until it did.

Upon opening the package I found this was homemade product someone else had made, and every ingredient that it contained I already had in my house. Mildly irritated, I thought to myself...well if I like time I will make.

The good stuff...LOVE IT.

I saw an immediate difference in Marissa's hair.

Is it worth $18 buck a way.

We finally ran out of product the last time I fixed Marissa's hair, so I decided it was time to pony up and play armature chemist. This is me...this is just how I do things. Then I give my friends the chance to be my test subjects samples.

I didn't have to make shampoo, because we only use it about once a week. The rest of the time we just rinse and add conditioner. Shampoo that is Sulfate free is a must, but of course you know that because you read all about it in yesterday's post.

So I Noah pulled out my big buckets of herbs and I scavenged in the kitchen for all my good oils and began cookin' up the goods.

I started by pouring my oils in the pot. Coconut, Olive, Safflower, were my oils of choice. Jojba and avacado oils would be wonderful too, but I didn't have any...and they are expensive.

Then I added several different herbs. Each with it's own benefits. Far too many to list, but if your interested just shoot me an email and I will fill you in.

Isn't pretty...smelled great too. The kids kept asking what I was baking.

I let the oil and herbs steep on med-low heat for an hour, then strained out the herbs. Next I divided it up in to two different pots. This is what it looked like after I strained it.

To one I added just a smudge of bees wax and some coconut milk. Loverly it is. This will be our leave in conditioner. Looks and smells exactly like the expensive stuff...except I got 20 ounces for about $4.00 instead of 8 ounces for $18.

With the second pot I added a bunch of bees wax. This will be our goop for twists and braids. Love it! It too, looks and smells like the expensive stuff, except I got 40 ounces for about $4.00 instead of 8 ounces for $18.

Of course I was only able to do this, because I already had purchased the herbs in bulk and had them in my stash. If I had to buy the herbs from a store, this would have been much more expensive.

Oh, I almost forgot...I have to show you my bees wax.

Thanks to Yoder's Hardware in Michigan I got a great deal on this. 1 pound of bees wax at Sun Harvest $39.99. 1 pound of bees wax at Yoder's $8.99. I love a good bargain. I love the way this little gold bar of goodness looks. It smells like bee poop. When I told Noah that I thought it smelled like bee poop, he wanted to know how I knew what bee poop smells like. I told him that I have eaten it plenty of times (bee pollen.) He was totally grossed out, until I informed him that he eats bee vomit all the time (honey.) That shut him up real quick.

Here is a quick look at my finished product.

The stuff in the big mason jar will set up once it cools, that is our styling gel. The stuff in the little jelly jar is our leave in conditioner. I use it after a wash...or in our case mostly rinses. I also put a bit into a spray bottle and add water for a quick mist everyday. Works fabulous.

I loved doing this...just like I like mixing up herbs and such for medicinal purposes. I'm thinking maybe I should sell this. Seriously, I could sell this for less than half of what other people are selling it for and still make a profit. Yep, I just might. Maybe I could. Maybe it could fund adoptions.


Happy Valentines Day

To you....

and to me from my dear beloved....

does he spoil me or what?

Yep, I am a blessed girl indeed....I love this guy.

Not just cause he buys me great gifts, cause he has only gotten the hang of that in the last couple of years. I love him cause he loves me, no matter what...and trust me I can be pretty hard to live with. I couldn't ask for a more kind, loving, patient, hard working, God fearing man. He's pretty cute too.

Yep, I am a blessed girl indeed!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Let's Talk About Hair & Skin or Is It A Science Lesson

You see this child?

And this one?

They are "high maintenance" children in the hair and skin department.

But they sure are cute!

These children?

Well they are "high maintenance" in their own special ways.

Needless to say taking care of brown skin and hair is a bit more challenging than taking care of those with lighter skin and straighter hair. I am VIGILANT about what goes on my children's bodies...and for good reason. Did you know that what goes ON your body is as equally important...if not more....than what goes in your body? Yep that's right, your giant organ. For some of us...that organ is bigger than others :) What goes on your body is absorbed DIRECTLY into you blood stream. It doesn't get filtered as much by your liver and kidneys, that do the fun job of filtering out all the nasty. All that stuff you buy in the store...has a WHOLE BUNCH of nasty. Especially if you are buying products specifically designed for those with dark skin.

Want to know some of those bad things?

The number one ingredient that is terrible for us...PETROLEUM. Seriously, this is ALWAYS one of the first ingredient's in products for dark skinned folks. YIKES, this stuff is terrible. Cancer, reproductive name this stuff has a link. Not to mention it actually does the opposite of what you want it to do. It DOESN'T moisturize, it dries out. It prevents natural moisture. Interested in reading more...ya know, in case you want to check my info out..lest you think I am just a paranoid wack nut... you can find one of MANY links HERE.

So if you are currently slathering your children in Vaseline...STOP what you are doing...right now.... and scrub them like they just bathed in hazardous waste, and never, ever, put that stuff on them again. Doctors orders. Well don't stop right now, finish reading this post...then go clean them up.

Here is a little tid bit for you...Did you know that black women are 50% MORE likely to get cancer than other races? Yep. Now, I am no doctor...I have said that before...but I THINK it might have something to do with all the terrible products that are put onto their bodies everyday to keep that beautiful dark skin and hair looking fabulous. Just a hunch...can't prove it...I'm just sayin' if your product has several ingredients known to cause cancer...just might be the cause.

Want to know another bad ingredient....Parabens. Their in NEARLY every bath and body product. Bad stuff...real Bad. These little compounds meant to act as a preservative, actually play a terrible little trick on you body. You put this on your skin, and your body thinks it is estrogen. That's right boys and girls. Too much estrogen=cancer, fertility problems, and more. Seriously...I am not making this stuff up. Read all about it HERE.

Now since this is supposed to be about moisturizer...I won't even mention the evils of Sulfates. You want to know can click HERE.

Where was I?

Oh yeah,

I have been on the look out for great healthy products that actually work for my children.

Finding something for their skin has been easy. Almond Oil. This stuff ROCKS! It absorbs extremely well (unlike several of the other oils I tried), so the children are not greasy and oily. Just well moisturized, soft, and yummy. It doesn't have much of a smell, and is not at all expensive. I get a big bottle of it at Sun Harvest for $9.99 and it lasts forever. Sometimes I add some essential oils to make it smell...mostly not though.

Marissa's hair however has been another story all together. An since this post is getting to be too long...I will have to tell you all about our hair adventures another day.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


It's Thursday, so it is time for my post on giving. This week I am choosing to highlight an organization, that again, is taking small gifts and doing huge things with them. The five for fifty campaign, began by Tom Davis. This man has a God given passion for the poor, the orphan, the sick, and the widow. A life changing visit to Russian orphanages was the spark that began this passion. This man loves Jesus and is daily striving to be His hands and feet to a lost and dying world. The basic premise of this campaign is this:

  • Spend 5 minutes praying for the poor, orphaned, sick, and widowed
  • fast 5 hours per week for these same people
  • Give $5 a month to 5 for 50
  • spend 5 days a year serving these same people
  • Get 5 people to join you
Simple easy things we can all do for the least of these. Want to know what you $5 to five for 50 will do?
  • $5 will feed 1 orphan for a MONTH (100 meals)
  • $5 will educate 1 orphan for a year
  • $5 will buy new clothes for an orphan
Seriously, five bucks will feed a child that is currently STARVING for an entire month. We can't even get one meal at a fast food restaurant for that here. When that money is given to 5 for 50 a child eats for an entire month. How is that for multiplying our "talents" using what God has given us for His kingdom and His glory.

Someone asked, "Well isn't the biggest problem not lack of food, but government corruption that keeps the food from the people?" While this may be true to some extent, it is no where near the complete truth. Believe it or not, there is still famine in the world today. Places like Ethiopia and Haiti are experiencing severe famine today. There simply is no food. Even in the places where there is plenty of food, extreme poverty prevents many form having even one meal a day. There are no food stamps or government programs to provide food for these folks....they simply go without. That is, UNLESS someone like you or me steps up and gives.

Let's assume for a minute, that all the starving people of the world are hungry not because of a lack of food, but government corruption, or even the exporting of their goods to the USA, Europe, and other wealthy nations is why children go hungry. Let's assume this IS truth. Does this excuse us? Will I be able to stand before a holy God and simply reply, "Well Lord you gave them the food and their government took is really not my fault." I don't think so.

I don't think it is any more of en excuse than not sharing the gospel in the USA because Bibles are everywhere, people can read about the gospel for themselves...therefore I am not responsible to share.

We have a responsibility to help the hurting. To reach out and serve them in real and tangible ways. Giving to the 5 for 50 campaign is just one of the many ways to do just that.

You can find out more about Tom Davis and his ministry HERE.

You can find the 50 for 50 campaign HERE.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Surgery and Another Note

Grace's surgery went well. She was so brave. She was trying so hard to be a big girl and not cry, but big ol' crocodile tears kept rollin' down her cheek. The mass in her arm pit was indeed a large mass of muscle. He took a piece of it out to biopsy, but says he has no idea why she would have a large over growth of muscle. I say it's cause she has her grandma's genes.

The other doctor removed one of the many lumps in her neck and says that it does not appear to be malignant. Tests results to confirm that will be here in a few days.

She is sore, acting like a drunken sailor, and in a bit of pain...but thrilled to be home.

On another note...I have to post this next thing, because I am just so flippin' excited for my friend. Seriously, thrilled for you!

I have this friend...adopting from a place I love. A place that our family holds know that place....starts with a U ends with ganda. They have some sweet boys coming from that same place ours came know that one home. Well I just got to say...I can't wait for those boys to get here. I can't wait until William and his friend get to see each other again. I can't wait to hear more amazing stories about what an AWESOME God we have. Ya know, so awesome that He sends $21,000 checks in the mail to pay for adoption because HE loves the orphan and ALWAYS makes a way for them to be home with their families. Just another reminder to all you in the process of bringing home your babies GOD IS ABLE TO DO EXCEEDINGLY AND ABUNDANTLY MORE THAN WE CAN EVER ASK OR IMAGINE. Not just cause He can, but because HE loves us. Money schmoney....forget about it.

Monday, February 9, 2009


Grace will be having her biopsy at 7:30 tomorrow morning. She tells me she is just a little scared. She totally does not grasp the context of anesthesia. It really is funny. Tonight she told me that if she is too tired to wake up in the morning, they could just skip the anesthesia and she would just keep sleeping for them. Praying for a smooth surgery and a good out come of the tests.

Friday, February 6, 2009


Want to follow an amazing story of a family being Jesus to a child?

Want to see God move and use a tiny helpless baby change hearts?

Want to see love in action?

Want to see real sacrificial love, the kind that moves the heart of God?

Then check out this blog.

Thanks Emily for the is a blessing.

Time For Action

ANOTHER CALL FOR ACTION. President Obama has chosen David Ogden for the office of Deputy Attorney General. Mr. Ogden must be voted in by the senate. The hearings for his nomination began yesterday. It is imperative that we take the time to call our senators and ask them to vote against this man occupying the office of Deputy Attorney General. I just called and left a lengthy message to both my senators and it took less than five minutes. For those of you who think your one call won't make a difference, these people have a formula, and for every one phone call, email, or letter they receive from a constituent they assume 300 more feel they same way. They do listen to what their constituents want, we need only make our voice heard.

It is not difficult to find your senators numbers, just google "how to contact my senator" and you will find the needed information. I would recommend you call the local office near you, rather than the Washington number. There is high call volume to Washington right now due to the recent "stimulus package." Please do not delay, they will be voting on this soon.

When I called, I simply left a massage stating my concern over Ogden holding this office, not only because of his defense of the p*orn industry, but more importantly his views on the USA being subject to international law. I stated that the USA is a sovereign nation and is not, nor should it ever be subject to international law. The Constitution should always be upheld to the highest extent. This man simply cannot up hold his duty to uphold the constitution with his beliefs. I gave specific information from the following material off of stating the case and the year.

The following was copied from

"Obama nominee David Ogden faces significant opposition in his quest for Senate confirmation as Deputy Attorney General, but apparently not for the best reasons. President Barack Obama has nominated Ogden to the post as the number two prosecutor in the country. His Senate confirmation hearing was set to begin yesterday, February 5.
Ogden's appointment raised considerable opposition from conservative and Christian groups largely because of his past involvement defending Penthouse and Playboy in lawsuits related to pornography, and because of cases he has argued to prevent internet filters on public library computers. The purpose of these filters, according to his opponents, is to keep children from accessing pornography, while Ogden and his allies claim free speech concerns.
Of far greater interest should be Ogden's role in the case of
Roper v. Simmons 543 U.S. 551 (2005), in which he submitted a brief urging the Supreme Court to look beyond our Constitution and apply international law as the Supreme Law of the land. Specifically, he cited the near-universal support of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child as a legally-binding mandate to outlaw the death penalty for persons under 18 years old, even though our own laws and Constitution contain no such ban. Sadly, the Supreme Court sided with Ogden, scuttling U.S. sovereignty under international pressure.
The issue, again, is not whether or not minors should be subject to the death penalty when they commit murder, but whether U.S. law should be dictated by international fiat. One would hope the Deputy District Attorney to the United States, sworn to uphold the Constitution, would be someone with enough faith in our own law to do just that."

Thursday, February 5, 2009


I have been asked several times by several different people, "What do we need to do, how can I help?" This is in response to various videos, posts, and conversations about the poor, orphaned, and widowed. "The need is so great and and, besides didn't Jesus say that the poor would always be among us?" Yes, Jesus did say that, then He said to give. He also tells us whatever we do for the least of these, we have done unto Him. Even simply giving a drink of water to someone who is thirsty. I know of SEVERAL different groups that can do so much with so little. So I thought for the next several weeks I would post on Thursdays a link to one of these organizations that does do so much with so little. I can honestly say that I don't know a single person who cannot afford to give. Some how we get in our minds that God wants us to do something big. True, some people are called to do big things....but most are not. Most of us will be given many opportunities to do small things for our Lord, and He will in turn make much of them, for his kingdom purpose.

The first organization I want to list is Kids Lake. I wanted to start with this one, because it is aimed at children. Each month they support a new cause, by asking children to give small amounts of money that they have earned or raised themselves. Each month these kids come thorough in amazing ways, and are changing lives, in Jesus name, by their small donations. If children can do this, if they can get THIS, then they have bright futures indeed. If they can do this...why can't we? So you want to give? You want to change a life by doing something small in man's eyes, but is HUGE is God's? Then stop over there and give $5 bucks so a child can eat with dignity. So a child can be just a bit healthier. So Jesus can love this child in a way that they can feel with their hands and well as their heart. Encourage your children to do the same.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Serious Life

Great Magazine...check it out.

The February issue of Serious.Life Magazine is online!
I hope you'll take a minute and go check it out. All of the ads for ministries and Christianity charity work are FREE. This month the feature article is about Abby and 50 selfless young men who are working hard to learn why it is important to serve others.
The magazine includes a lot of great content from bloggers you’ll appreciate, as well as great features, photos and other content. Besides great articles on interesting people, there is a lot about family, adoption, personal finance, spiritual life, humor… all sorts of “life” topics.