Being able to devote thirty minutes each morning to swinging her is such a blessing and something that this momma doesn't ever take forgranted. Thanking Jesus that I am able to be home so that I don't miss these faces and her joy!
Friday, December 30, 2011
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Being a mother is by far the greatest gift that God has ever given me and my girls are such a huge blessing. Love seeing them together this year and experiencing Christmas together. God is so good and I am blessed to know Him!
Saturday, December 24, 2011
Happiness has been so present in the last weeks...still there is a sadness that is ever present in my heart because this Christmas millions of children don't know this happiness. Millions of children still sit and wait for a family. It literally shatters my heart in a million pieces to think of. Children as valuable and precious as my girl..without a daddy's arms to hold them and without a momma's touch to tuck them in. Children without hope of ever having a family to call their own.
I am broken for these children. Broken and begging God to allow me to do more this year. God chose Jillian for us. He meant her to be ours out of the millions of children waiting..she belongs with us. Could you have a child God set apart for you? Could there be something you could do to welcome a boy or girl in His name?
I can't even begin to tell you the blessings God has bestowed upon us this year because of this little girl resting at my feet as I type. Giggling and batting her hands inside the large, green bowl she drug out of the kitchen cabinet. It all seems so surreal that she is here and she is ours..but this Christmas this is our miracle. It is our girl being home and growing so much, learning so much, and living joyfully with hope each and everyday..because God showed her to us and called us to be her family..What could God be showing you this Christmas? Is your miracle waiting there..just waiting for you to say yes?
Monday, December 19, 2011
Water? Is this for real?
This brush feels so funny.
It's stuck! Hmmm..
Sunday, December 18, 2011
Prayed about the answer.
Prayed about my response to God's calling.
Prayed that I would hear His voice clearly and be able to answer to Him in a manner worthy of the one who made me.
So here is what is on my heart. It is mostly for me to read again and again and again when I am discouraged or unsure..but I am sharing it here in case God might speak to you through it...Here goes..
There are 147 million orphans around the world that go to bed at night without a momma to tuck them in, without a daddy to turn out the light, without sisters to snuggle next to. I have seen the orphan with my own eyes..malnourished, neglected, bed sore ridden, infected, dirty. AND I love the orphan because she is my daughter. I cannot stand before the Lord one day and pretend that I didn't see them. I can't stand before Him who made me and make excuses about why I saw them and didn't do more. I can't say to Him..it would have been too hard or stressful. I can't say to Him..it was just too much to care for the first one you gave me. I can't because I want to give Jesus all that I am. I want to be about making much of Him not about choosing what is easiest or even seemingly best for me.
He says in the word in Isaiah that we are to defend the cause of the fatherless and in James that pure religion is to visit the orphan and widow in their distress. My part of this is to adopt. Adoption is not every one's calling, but everyone is called to do something. Adoption just happens to be the way I feel God is calling me to fulfill these commands. It seems crazy. It seems unwise, but God willing I am waiting for Him to bring me more to care for in His name because I want these children, who are precious in His sight, to know the love of a family so that ultimately they can have a chance to know the love of their Heavenly Father, accept the gift of His Son, and spend an eternity in Heaven with Him.
I count it a privilege to be able to mother my little one and though at times it has been very hard..I have JOY! Joy because this is exactly where God has called me to be. So I continue to walk by faith and wait for His hand showing me the way to go. Maybe He will shut every door to adding children to our family right now or maybe He will ask us to do something even crazier that we never dreamed or imagined. I am open. Open to what He wants even if it seems a little crazier because I love Him and this love is just too wonderful not to share with more.
Thursday, December 15, 2011
Secretly sissy loved having pics with Jill in these pjs. Though she is protesting it this very moment and doesn't want this picture posted..Growing up is hard to do.
A precious gift is our girl.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
So so cute...this little peanut is a huge blessing.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Does the woman, a half a world away who gave you life, think of you everyday?
Does she mourn the daughter that she will never know?
Does she imagine your laugh or your smile?
Did she ever dream that you would be mine, living in America?
Did she know that when she made the ultimate sacrifice and surrendered you, that she was giving me the greatest gift of my life?
I wonder about her and at times it makes me cry. I can't imagine my life without Jillian and I can't imagine the circumstances the she must have faced that caused her to make the ultimate, loving sacrifice and give up her child. I pray for her all the time..Jillian's birth mother. I pray that she has peace. I pray that her heart knows the Lord and that one day in heaven I will meet her and thank her for giving me this precious, priceless gift.
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Monday, December 5, 2011
Monday started with therapy last week and numbers. Which leads me to this..I hate numbers..Assessment numbers that is-hate them...Age equivalent scores are down right evil if you ask me. These numbers for my baby girl are still so very low and all those blasted numbers do are turn my eyes from the Lord and leave me asking questions. Will I ever hear her sweet voice say "I love you momma"? Will she ever be able to dress herself? Will she read? Will she have to attend public school? Will she... all things that I have struggled with all week. Struggling not because I am not willing to embrace the answer to each of these questions being not what I hoped, but struggling because it is all so unknown. Struggling because in my mind, I want to have a plan for the future. I want to be in control. One thing the Lord continues to teach me is that I may not see my dreams for her this side of eternity. One more thing is for sure, He is in control and I am not. He continues to teach me that He is the ultimate reality maker. His reality for my baby girl may not match this momma's dreams for her, but His plan is that her life, and our part in it, bring Glory to His name. Ultimately, that is what I want to live for-to bring glory to Him who made me and my baby girl. If she never speaks..God is still good. If she never reads..God is still good. If she never gets to attend the special, christian school we love so much..God is still good. I will still love Him. I will still serve Him and I will still obey Him walking by faith into this unknown future that I can't see. A future that is filled with joy and abundant love because He has allowed our Jillian to be in it with us.
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Today I watched you sleep. I listened to you take each breath. I watched you suck your thumb intently all curled up in a ball..your bare toes peeking out from underneath your tucked in legs.
I watched you and love overflowed from my heart. I watched you and I wished that every child could have a mother to watch them sleep. I wished that we didn't have to leave any behind. I wished that no children would have to live another minute as an orphan living in an institution. I wished every child could have a mommy and daddy who could spend the chilly morning at the park with them just like you had this morning. My heart breaks over it so often..the ones left behind. I cry out to God for them and wish it could be different. My child loving you has changed me. Loving you has given me such a deeper perspective of what matters. Loving you has left my heart raw in ways that I never imagined. I am grateful to you. Grateful for the way that you continue to open my eyes to the ways of the Lord and His call to care for the fatherless. At 27 pounds, you have so much power over my heart. I love you deeply and am beyond blessed to have you sleeping upstairs. Beyond blessed that God opened my eyes and my heart to you and that you are my daughter.
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Here he is with his girls. Jillian really liked the candles, fire, and smoke. Thirty-eight candles create a lot of smoke. She "chased" that smoke right over the table trying to catch it. Precious. We are blessed to call this man ours and even more blessed that he leads our family in such a Godly manner. (Notice a store bought cake. Momma with a two year old doesn't have time to make a homemade cake..sad, but true. Daddy still ate it up though.)
Sunday, November 27, 2011
Her first ornament hanging.
Her first glimpse at a Christmas tree.
Momma's helper in the kitchen. (aka playing in the flour.)
Going down the slide all by herself for the very first time. She is not in momma's lap anymore. Daddy was at the bottom to catch her and my did she love it.
Saturday, November 26, 2011
Look how happy she is next to her sissy.
What an incredible gift she is to our family.
What a blessed Thanksgiving with her here.
Her first Thanksgiving meal included mash potatoes, fork mashed baked beans, and fork mashed sweet potatoes with cranberries. You should have seen her face when momma gave her a bite of cranberry sauce. It was a bit tart for her liking. Don't worry her favorite vanilla yogurt showed up too despite it not really being a traditional Thanksgiving food. She also had many other "meals" throughout the day so she must have grasped the American ideals of Thanksgiving..eat as much as you can! How we love her..How thankful we are for little life!
If you were in my neighborhood last night about 6:15, you would have seen me in the driveway at my house singing to my baby girl. Screaming with joy to her saying again and again..YOU DID IT!! YOU MADE IT!!! She made it. She made it through her sissy's game. She had never been to the gym before, had to go out in the dark to get there, ride in the van, walk in the dark up the sidewalk, sit around people, be near balls, hear the loud buzzers BUT she made it through the game. I tell you the girl wasn't even all that anxious about it. She made a few sounds even and "talked" to some of those sitting near us. Did you ever see a mom tear up because her girl could go to her sissy's bball game? Well, this momma did. It's miraculous I tell you and while I don't always want to hope for it just in case it won't ever be..God is the God of redemption and I just can't help dreaming that my baby girl is going to be just fine someday. She is going to be just fine and that is going to bring so much glory to His precious name. I'm dreaming and praying for that every night as she drifts off to sleep. Do it Lord...I believe you can! Heal her little heart and turn the ashes of her little life into something beautiful for you! Oh to watch her is just so amazing. Truly amazing!!
Monday, November 21, 2011
Sunday, November 20, 2011
God is so good and I was so tired. So tired, but I took a nap while my baby girl did and so now momma is back on her game. Need to take some time off for the next few weeks as per my DH's request. So thankful for my man and my older girl who are always supporting and helping momma with whatever crazy endeavor I take on. I wouldn't be half the follower of Christ I am without them.
Friday, November 18, 2011
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Just a little eating update. When we got our princess home, we suspected that she had never been given anything to eat but a bottle. The caregiver who deposited her in our arms told us that she was given one bottle a day before her nap. One bottle? She lived on one bottle a day. This means that our sweet one never learned to chew, has some pretty weak oral motor skills, and is very hesitant to let anything near her mouth. I suspect that since her cleft lip was repaired at 4 months old, and she was hurting, that she never went through the oral exploration stage babies have to progress through...nothing going into this sweet girl's mouth.
Fork mashed pumpkin pie with whip cream...YUMMY!
Saturday, November 12, 2011
Wednesday, November 9, 2011
Sunday, November 6, 2011
Thursday, November 3, 2011
She doesn't want to eat the candy (though I wish with all my heart she did). She just wants to get the boxes of nerds out of the mix because they make great shakers. She can regularly be found with a box in each hand shaking out a tune! Nerds are momma's favorite candy though so those shakers won't be in the bowl for long. I'm eating them!
So cute to catch her on the top of the table with her hands in the bowl.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
Six months ago you couldn't...
make any speech sounds
let me hold you
eat any solid foods
touch and play with any toys
go anywhere outside of our home without intense anxiety and meltdowns.
hold our hand
leave any room in our house without us
sleep next to me at night
call out for help when you needed it.
BUT NOW... you do all of that and more. How I continue to marvel at how far you have come. How blessed I am to be your momma and to be able to watch you grow each and every day.
run, climb, jump, and swing...you walk occasionally too
scream with joy, babble like crazy, and chatter nonstop
you ask us to hold and rock you
you like to be snuggled tightly next to us
you love to eat
regularly touch every toy you own while throwing them around the living room
have gained nine pounds
are very comfortable outside the house if you are familiar with where we are
sleep nestled in the crook of my arm each night
laugh and smile continually
Monday, October 24, 2011
I had three extra littles yesterday afternoon while their momma was working. That made five girls at my house all afternoon including two two year olds. It was busy and wonderful!!
When DH came home, he said..Are you not the least bit stressed out after having all those kids here this afternoon? (Clearly he was-that's why he asked.)
I said..No. In fact I have so much joy because those three extra littles are a physical representation of the redemptive power of Jesus right before my eyes. I can't help but smile as the almost six year old sings worship songs at the top of her lungs throughout the house all afternoon. I can't help but tear up when the same six year old sits in my lap and recounts stories of her former life for me. I can't help but sing His praises when we sit down to eat and they intiate prayer all on their own. Watching that precious two year old fold her hands and say the prayer right along with her big sisters..that my friends is the power of Jesus to turn ashes into something beautiful. These littles have been the daughters of my friends for a bit under two years and the change that living in a loving, christian home has made for them..well it's indescribable. Watching them thrive, hearing them praise Jesus' name, seeing them praying to God after all that they have been through in their short, little lives..It's something beautiful.
AND..I have been honored to be able to watch it happen. God is so good to work so beautifully and to allow us to watch with our very eyes as He does it.
Having the littles here-It really makes me want to bring home more...to love more in His name..to extend myself for His purposes.
BUT DH said after having five girls here all afternoon maybe he would need another ten years to decide he could do it. (He was only kidding of course. At least I think he was just kidding..)
Thursday, October 20, 2011
It's that strange black box daddy always has attached to his ear.
It's playing music??