Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Spring Fling!

I truly have the best intentions to start blogging regularly again, but the time factor in which to do all that blogging just never quite seems to happen!  Imagine that! :)

So, this will be a "Spring Fling" on some pics of what we've been up to the past couple of months!  So, in random order, here a few highlights! :)

 All Caty wants this spring is her 2 front teeth!

Phone booth fun on the Oxford Square! 

 Davy Crockett and his Daddy!

 Mommy and the big girls cheering for the Bombers!

 The Ole Miss baseball game put Caroline Faith right to sleep!

 Cheering at half-time with the Ole Miss cheerleaders!

 Watching the Ole Miss first baseman...

 And then playing first base!

 Nothing more fun than jumping in the tub with your clothes on! :)

 Brand new "family size" box of cheese crackers! 

 Family movie night!

We broke our original "rule" and let Caty get her ears pierced for her 7th birthday!!!

 2nd place at Orange Beach competition!

 Stunting in the pool!

 This smart little thing is figuring out so much...like how to get outside even when the doors are locked!

 One of her favorite things to do is watch her sisters cheer videos!

 Lots and lots of baseball!

 Intense cheering at the Ole Miss basketball game! :)

 Chocolate milk at Big Bad Breakfast!  Wow!

CF meeting the Black Bear for the first time!

 Loving the pizza at church!

Hope your spring days have been BRIGHT and SUNNY!!!! :)

"Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation!"
Psalm 95:1

Monday, April 7, 2014

7 MONTHS HOME!!!

Today, April 7, 2014, marks exactly 7 MONTHS HOME with our wild, spunky, active, sweet, adorable, joy-filled Ethiopian princess!!!

Caroline Faith has been so funny lately, and she is definitely keeping us on our toes!  The only time I take a "break" is when she is sleeping! :)  This morning, she threw her toothbrush in the toilet right as I was flushing it!  Oh my...I have plunged and plunged, but we may still end up having to call a plumber!  Ha!  Something like this goes on at our house pretty much every day! :)

As you can see from the pics above, her older brother and sisters have introduced her to "Easter egg hunting"!  They have set up many hunts for her in our backyard!  One of her favorite places to play is in our shower!  And yes, that is my sports bra around her neck!  :)

And she loves loves loves to eat sweets!  (Although I try to really limit her sugar intake.)  The bottom pic is of her LOVING her piece of Caty's ice cream cake this weekend!  Yummy!!!

I have started taking her to the gym nursery a few times a week, so that I can work out consistently again.  It has been great for both of us!!!  She loves the social interaction and getting out of the house, as does her Mommy! :)  She is so my child!!!  And I am keeping her room in the church nursery on Wednesday nights, and she is doing great with that so far too.

This weekend we were at Carson's baseball tournament, and she wandered off ahead of me.  A sweet lady stopped her and asked her something.  I saw her turn around and point at me and smile.  I went up to the lady and asked her what she had asked Caroline Faith?  She told me that she asked where her Mommy was?  This made me feel so good that she turned around and pointed to me!  So thankful she knows her Mommy!!!  That just warmed my heart!

I am so thankful for our 6 month season of cocooning this fall and winter.  We tried our hardest to simplify and slow down, and it was a sweet (and sometimes hard) season for us.  But God is so faithful, and He used it as a time of bonding and a time for love to grow.  And I am so very thankful that it's now spring and life is starting to take on a "new normal" for us!  God is so GOOD!!!!

Now, if the weather would just stay WARM that would be perfect!  Little Miss is happiest when she is OUTSIDE!!! :)

HAPPY 7 MONTHS HOME, Konjo!  We love you, baby girl, and we're so glad you're HOME!!!

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
John 16:33

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Catybug is SEVEN!!!

Our sweet little Catybug turned 7 years old today!!!  

We celebrated by having TEN little 7 year old girls, including Caty (and plus our own other 3 kiddos!), come over last night for Caty's very first spend the night party!  It was wild and crazy, and lots of memories were made!  The night consisted of playing in the sprinklers, pizza, decorating sun visors, jumping on the trampoline, opening presents, ice cream cake, fingernail painting, glow sticks outside, make overs, hide and seek, glitter tattoos, making smores, movie time, a little bit of sleeping and LOTS of giggling and squealing! 

 7 year old girls are FUN!!! :)

And she is super excited about getting her EARS PIERCED!!!!  

We are breaking our original "ear piercing rule" of being 9, and letting her do something CRAZY and get hers pierced at 7!  Haha!  Yep, we're pretty crazy like that! :)  So, after her last cheer competition of the season, she'll be getting some earrings!!!  So excited!  Pics to come! 

HAPPY 7th BIRTHDAY, CATY!!!  WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH!!!

Friday, March 28, 2014

20 Months Old!

Our little cutie is 20 months old today!!!  She is so active and busy-busy!  We are full speed ahead every day, and it's so much fun!  Caroline Faith is doing so great, and she is growing so fast!  Hoping to have more time to update the blog next week!  This past week was a little crazy!!! :)

"How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you?"
1 Thessalonians 3:9

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Tasted and Seen.

Yesterday, Jody and I had the opportunity to sit in our keeping room and share our adoption story with a friend.  We pretty much shared the story from beginning to end.  It had been exactly 4 years to the day since I came to Jody and asked him to pray about what I believed God was calling us to do...adopt a baby girl from Ethiopia.

I have to be honest that it surprised me how emotional I got as I shared parts of our story.  It's been over 6 months since Caroline Faith came home, and I didn't think it would be as hard emotionally to walk back through our journey.  I am thankful that it was though.  I pray that the Lord will always keep my heart soft and vulnerable to how He grew us and sustained us during the long wait.

I haven't forgotten the pain and the raw emotion of the wait, and I hope that I don't.  But the joy that has come from finally having Caroline Faith home definitely helps that hard season of waiting fade into the background.  Isn't that just how God works?  He brings such life and joy from some of our darkest times and then His redemption just covers the pain.  His faithfulness overwhelms us to the point where our hearts feel full to the point of bursting.

Even at this very moment, the tears fill my eyes as I think back on God's faithfulness over the past 4 years.  There were some times where I truly felt like I was in a pit of despair and could not carry on even one more day waiting.  But even then, He was there.  He never failed to meet me exactly where I was, and He always gave me the grace and strength I needed to make it another day.

I guess that's one of the biggest things I learned.  He is enough.  His Word is life-giving.  Depending on Him day by day, even moment by moment, is truly the best way to live.  He is always always always faithful.  And now on the other side of our miracle, I can look back with a heart of thankfulness for what He allowed us to go through.  We needed it.  And He knew we needed it.

His timing (THANKFULLY!!!) is not always our timing, but it is always perfect.  There are so many ways that God used the long wait for our good.  And I am sure we will begin to see even more as time goes by.  If you search the Scriptures, you will see all the many times that God used waiting to bring His people closer to Him and to grow their faith.

I love that our children learned at such an early age about what it looks like to wait on the Lord.  I truly believe that they grew in their faith during this journey just as we did.  I hope that they will look back one day and remember what they learned.

Life has gotten full and busy staying home with 4 little ones, but I wouldn't trade it for anything.  The Lord is giving me much peace and contentment during this season, and I know this is what He has called me to do.  Spring is here, and we are beginning to come out of our attachment cocoon and live out this life that He has for our family.  Since having Caroline home, we have learned better how to simplify and it's been a welcome (and much needed) change for us.

Our lives are all for Him, and I pray that we will live each and every day for His glory.  It keeps all the craziness and the worries of this world in perspective when we remember our purpose on this earth...to glorify Him.

We have tasted and seen the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  And we are forever changed.

"Taste and see that the Lord is good."
Psalm 34:8

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Happy Birthday, Jody!!!

Happy 36th Birthday to the BEST Daddy and husband ever!  We love you so much and hope you have the best birthday yet!  We are so thankful for YOU!!! :)

Friday, March 7, 2014

6 MONTHS HOME!!!

Today, March 7, 2014, marks exactly 6 MONTHS HOME with our precious daughter, Caroline Faith!!!

When I look at these pictures and see her huge, bright smile it's hard to even remember the scared little 13 month old baby that we brought home 6 months ago.  God has done more than we could ever imagine in healing her heart, bonding her to us, knitting her into our family, restoring her health, and redeeming her loss.

ONLY GOD can do those things!  And in such a miraculous way!!!  We are just so thankful.  I feel like we have all come so far in the past 6 months.  This seems like a huge milestone in our journey of attachment.

Spring is coming, and we are really starting to emerge more and more from our "cocoon".  She is doing so well with her little activities with Mommy (like music and library story time), and after spring break, we are planning on starting to try more things...like church nursery! :)  I am planning on staying in there with her for awhile on Wednesday nights when the crowd is much smaller.  Our plan is to try to everything gradually and slowly...no rush!  We'll just take it a day at a time, and try to read her cues to make sure she is ready.

I still "wear" her pretty much daily in the Ergo.  It is comforting for her, and it helps to keep her close.  I find that I rarely even use my stroller unless we are on a walk outside.  I love that she will still willingly get in the Ergo and let me hold her in it.  I hope that continues!

As I have watched her grow and blossom over the past 6 months, I truly feel like we are watching a miracle from the Lord unfold.  God's plans and timing are always always always perfect.  And the thing I whisper over and over in my heart is "Thank You, Jesus."

Happy 6 Months Home, Baby Girl!  We love you and we're so thankful you are HOME!!!

"Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen." 
Ephesians 3:20-21