Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

It has been so fun watching all of our children enjoy Christmas. The joy on their faces is priceless!!

The kids are loving all their new presents!!

Watching Durant enjoy his first Christmas has been so much fun! He loves opening new presents!

Ana likes opening presents and she thinks the moment the present is opened it should be taken out of the box!! She had no problem helping Carter and Durant open their presents if they were taking too long!

Friday, December 21, 2007

2 years home!

Two years ago today Matt and I brought Ana home! One of my most favorite memories from that time was seeing Carter's face the first time he saw his little sister. He's face just lit up and he was so excited!!
Adopting Ana has been an unpredictable journey that has taught our family a lot about life. We have learned that life is short and should be lived in the moment. Ana has brought us so much joy. She is so sweet, adorable, funny, and the best snuggler around.

Thanks Ana for a great two years!! We love you so much!!!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

If I were a gift,

I know I've said it before, but I have to say it again. I just love Carter's heart. I have to share what he brought home from school the other day. It started out "If I were a gift," and the students were to fill it in as they wished. This is what Carter wrote:
If I were a gift, I would be a soccer ball and be given to the people of Africa because they like soccer. I'm going to Ethiopia to see the orphanage.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Just for fun!

I didn't think I had all three pictures online, but I did!! So, I thought it would be fun to post our last three years of our "picking out the Christmas tree pictures" Look how our family has changed.....




Tuesday, December 11, 2007

It's time to share our secret....

Okay, it is time to share the project Matt and I have been working on for the last several weeks. We are starting an orphanage!!! It's true. This has been a dream of ours to do someday in the future. Like maybe when the kids were all in school and I had more free time!!! Well God took that idea and just kinda smiled as He said, the time is now!!! So we are in the process of starting up an orphanage in Nazareth, Ethiopia. It is called Kingdom Vision International. We are partnering up with a friend of mine from Ethiopia. He is helping us with all the in country details and he will also be running the orphanage.
Since this will be such a huge part of our lives, I have made a new blog just for the orphanage. We'd love to have you follow along with us as we travel down this new road God has called us to travel!!!!

We also have a website:

Sunday, December 9, 2007

All I want for Christmas is......

My two front teeth!!

On Friday Carter lost his second front tooth. The first thing he did when he lost it was started singing that song!!! He was excited!!!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

6 months home!

Wow, hard to believe that six months have passed since Durant and I landed in the United States for the first time. I'll always remember the moment our family of five came together for the first time. It was an awesome feeling, like feeling whole!
Durant has come a long ways from the scared, fearful, and uncertain little boy we first fell in love with. He is now a brave (almost too much), confident, loving little boy who fills our home with laughter, love, and adventure every day!
It has been a joy having Durant join our family! We love him so much!
I'm often asked if we will have more kids of "our own" someday..... well you can't get more "our own" than the three awesome children God has blessed us with!! Matt and I love that each of our children bring their own unique story to our family. That is what makes each of them so special. We wouldn't have our family brought together any other way!

We love you so much Durant! We are so glad you are home!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Getting the Christmas Tree!

We went to our usually spot and picked out our Christmas tree Monday. Even though it was pretty cold, we still had a lot of fun doing it. Carter is great at finding the good trees, although the ones he usually wants are about 10 feet tall!! Durant couldn't stop walking around and around in the snow. Ana was happy to be held by Dad!
We had our annual picture taken by the tree guy. On the way home Matt and I were talking about how crazy it was that in 2005 there was just the three of us, 2006 there was the 4 of us, and now in 2007 there was 5 of us!! I wonder what the tree guy must be thinking!!! Will he be disappointed next year when we come back with only 5 of us? :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

First Snow!

We had our first real snow on December 1st. It was the first time Durant has ever seen snow falling that actually stayed on the ground. He was pretty excited about it, but insisted that it was rain. I kept telling him snow, but he kept saying rain. I did finally get him to call it white rain. It was really cute. We opened the door to look and feel the snow. He was so excited, but when Carter went to touch the snow Durant yelled, "No!"
Too cute! Ever time Carter went to touch the snow or to show Durant the snow he had in his hands, Durant would say, "No!" but at the same time he didn't want me to shut the door. He wanted to just stand there looking at it.
It's so fun to experience life through his eyes!!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Girls Night Out!

This is a little late getting posted, but a few weeks ago I got to ride in a limo for the first time ever!! My friend invited a bunch of us to help her celebrate her 40th birthday!! We had a lot of fun riding around Water Street and yelling out the window!! Eating supper, laughing, singing, and just being silly!

Thanks Paula for treating us to something so special on your birthday!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!! Wow, it's just so amazing to think that last year at this time Matt and I were sitting in Children's hospital with Ana after she'd just had her second hour long seizure. We didn't know what we were getting into or what the future would bring. Matt and I wouldn't have guessed that it would of brought a new son into our lives!! Adoption was so far from our minds last Thanksgiving. It's amazing how quickly God can turn things around.
I have so much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving:
  • A God that loves me and chooses to use me for His glory
  • A wonderful, kind, and loving husband that I LOVE being with
  • Three amazing, funny, adorable children
  • Fulfilling dreams I barely dared to dream
  • Great supportive friends
  • A caring family
  • Enough food to eat each day
  • Cars that start in the morning
  • The courage to take chances
  • Diet Pepsi
  • Fingerprints all over my front window
  • Listening to music
  • The freedom to be me
Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Friday Night Fun!

Just thought I'd share what we like to do on a Friday night. Can you tell we have little kids and don't get out much?!?!?!?!

Seriously the kids ran around with bags on their heads for like 20 minutes straight!! It doesn't get better than this.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Christmas Gift Ideas.....

Christmas will be here soon so I thought I'd help some of you with your shopping. Here are a few great websites that not only will find you a great Christmas present for someone, but will also help someone else in the process. What could be greater than that!!!
Happy Shopping!!!!

Some great Guatemala made items. Of course, it's fair trade! If you are unfamiliar with fair trade there is a link of the left hand side of this website that explains it.

This is a great website. Lots of great gifts to choose from that are fair trade! Also if you click on Gifts That Give you have the opportunity to help specific needs to be met such as sending a child to school, giving shoes, giving clean water, and supplying bed nets.

This website has lots to offer. Too many to explain. I recommend checking it out! And yes, again there are more fair trade items available.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


If you find yourself with some extra time, please check out this orphanage called AHOPE. It is for children living with HIV in Ethiopia. I really wanted to visit this orphanage while I was in Ethiopia, but didn't have time. That will be something I'll have to make sure to do the next time I go to Ethiopia.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Happy Birthday Carter!

It's hard to believe that 7 years ago today I became a Mom for the first time. These last 7 years have gone by so quickly. I love being a Mom to Carter. He's such a loving, kind, compassionate, smart, funny, and cute boy!

Seriously there is no way to explain how wonderful and unique Carter is, you just have to know him!! I like to joke that I could make an entire blog just about Carter. Full of all the jokes, ideas, and crazy moments he has in life!

Matt and I feel honored that God chose us to be Carter's Dad and Mom!

Monday, November 5, 2007

1st Haircut!!!

Durant had his first haircut in the United States today!! He was very brave and he sat very well once Mommy held him. Now he looks more like a 2 1/2 year old! What a cutie!!

I also had a mini lesson in how to care for African hair. Turns out I wasn't doing that great of a job at it... oops sorry Durant. I'll get better.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Fun in the house and outside!

Having three kids is awesome! We have so much fun together.
I love running around in the backyard or just playing around in the house!! Here are some pictures of the fun things we get to do together....

Playing play-doh has become a new favorite thing to do....

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy 1st Halloween Durant!

Durant was a little confused by this holiday. He just wanted to unwrap all the candy, but not eat it.

Happy Halloween!! Thanks to those of you who voted on what Carter, Durant, and Ana should be for Halloween. Sorry to disappoint you, but it was just for fun.
They ended up being Captain Jack Sparrow, a Frog, and a ladybug. The ladybug wasn't too excited about her costume. But the other two really liked their costumes!!