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!!

Hanging out with friends

For supper yesterday for my birthday we ended the day by meeting our best friends Amie and Ryan and their two little girls at Applebee's in Menomonie. It was so great to hang out with good friends. Amie and I have been friends since we were 10 years old so we have celebrated many many birthdays together!!

These are the guys we are so lucky to call our husbands........

Thanks for the fun night guys!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Happy Birthday to me!!!

Today is my birthday!! My first birthday with my family of five. I got to do a lot of my favorite things and got a lot of great presents!!
Each year on my birthday I can't help but reflect on what the last year has brought:

Sending my big boy to 1st grade:

Flying all the way to Africa to bring my little boy home:

Learning the uniqueness of my little girl:

So as hard as it may be to say good-bye to 28 and welcome in 29, I can't help but feel joy and anticipation for all that I have and all that is yet to come!

Thank you everyone for the emails, ecards, phone calls, gifts, and hanging out with me!! I feel very special and loved.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Didn't quite make it....

On Thursday night Ana had another of her big seizures. Matt and I were hoping to make it one whole year without one. We were a month short of a year. Thankfully because of some great medicine this seizure was only 7 minutes. But it did require the ambulance to come to our house and bring us to the ER. Ana recovered very quickly from the seizure. Unfortunately the next day she became super sick. By Saturday she was having trouble breathing so back into the ER we went. Turns out she has croup. She is on some good medicine now and is feeling much better.
But wow, two ER trips in a couple of days and a total of 4 ER visits in less then a year for one little girl. Thankfully she's a fighter. She's almost back to her usual smiling self.
Although Matt and I are a little bummed we didn't make the one year seizure free mark, we are really glad to have discovered that the medicine we carry around with us at all times really does help Ana!!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Durant's Dedication Day!

On Sunday we had Durant dedicated and had an adoption party too!! We had about 50 people over at our house to help celebrate Durant being apart of our family. It was so wonderful to see all the people who care about us.

We had some great food. Matt did a super job making Doro Wat. It was a big hit. We ended up running out of it by the end!
Our friend Randy surprised us by making Injera to go with the Doro Wat! We are glad that we can honor Durant's ethnic background by having some traditional food.

It was so cute to see all three kids in traditional Ethiopian clothing too!!
It was a great day!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Just for Fun!

Matt and I just can't seem to agree on what Carter, Durant and Ana should be for Halloween. He thinks J.D., Turk, and Carla from Scubs........

I think Troy, Chad, and Gabriella from High School Musical. What do you think......

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Donation deadline...

Wow, October is passing by so quickly. I will need to send out those donations soon. Thanks to those who have already given me donations!! That's awesome and really fun to see how many people are actually reading my blog!!!
I'm planning on mailing my donations to my deliverer by the end of next week. If you are unable to get donations to me by then and you are interested, I will continue to take any donations at any time. This isn't a one time thing. I plan on sending donations over often and to several different orphanages that are in need.
I'm so excited about this and you can be too!! This is a direct way to know and see how just one person can really make a difference in the lives of others. You can make the difference!!
Thanks for partnering with me on this!!! A special thanks to my brother Jeff who is using his connections with some very important people to make this thing even bigger!!

Abebech Gobena taking time out to talk with us at the orphanage

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Pumpkin Patch

On Saturday we went to the pumpkin patch. It was a beautiful warm day. The kids had a really fun time. We went through a corn maze, petting zoo (Durant did not like that) and played on fun equipment. I think this could be the start of a fun family tradition!

Friday, October 12, 2007

Carter's growing up!

Carter lost his 3rd tooth on Wednesday night. It is one of the top one's so instantly he looks like he's about 2 years older!! I can't believe how grown up he's getting. And since he has me for a mom of course we have to celebrate. He's learned to celebrate the simple things in life!!
Time is going way to fast for me. In just a few weeks we'll be celebrating his 7th birthday! Wow, how can I be old enough to have a 7 year old?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Update on donations list.

Got an email back from the orphanage. School supplies and medical supplies are needed as well as financial assistance for their children with HIV/AIDS.
Please see prior donation list for specific ideas.
Thank you all so much!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Donation ideas...

I've been asked by a few people for some donation ideas. I have an email out to the orphanage asking about donations that they need the most, but I haven't heard back from them yet. I learned first hand how frustrating communication can be in Ethiopia. Email could be down right now or just really slow. So while I wait for that email here are some ideas of donations I know they are always in need of:

Children's Socks(new)
Dish towels
Surgical Gloves
Monetary donations

Please let me know if you are interested. I'm hoping to have the donations to her in the next couple of weeks. Thank you!

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Donations again....

As many of you know I have a heart and calling to continue helping children who are in need in the world. I am actively pursuing and praying about what direction God wants me to go with this. I will keep you updated.
In the meantime, I have an opportunity to send some donations over to the orphanage I visited while in Ethiopia. There is a lady in our area who is willing to deliver these donations for me! I am so excited about it.
I am in contact with the orphanage and they will be so excited to hear about things coming. The orphanage is called Abebech Gobena. There is a link to it on the right side of my blog. The mission of the orphanage is "To make children productive and responsible Citizens by satisfying their needs and protecting their rights, so that they can become self-supportive and contribute their share in the society." The woman who started this orphanage is amazing. She doesn't just want to house these children until they are grown, she wants to help them have a life after they leave. She is know as the "African Mother Theresa!" What a honor it was when I had the privilege of meeting her myself. She has received many awards and honors through the years. Her story is so amazing. I really hope you take the time to read about her journey.
I know many of you have asked me how you can help make a difference in the lives of people/children in Africa. This is a great way. If you are interested in sending some donations to Ethiopia, please let me know. I will gladly get them to this woman who will be delivering them. She is leaving the beginning of November. If you are interested please let me know. I can pick up your donations or you can drop them off to me. Also, monetary donations are always welcome at the orphanage.