Wednesday, October 29, 2008

"A Whole Hand-Full"...

Miyah's 5th birthday (14)

...that's what our just-turned 5 year old is telling us she is today! I can hardly believe it. How do the years sneak up on us so quickly? It seems like yesterday she was that little 12 month old who could barely sit up. Now she's a strong, healthy, happy, outgoing little girl.

And SWEET! Anyone who knows her well can tell you they don't come any sweeter than our Miyah. She has a way about her that is so endearing and kindhearted. We are blessed beyond belief to have this little girl in our lives.

I can't help but think about her birthparents on the anniversary of her birth. Surely the day doesn't pass without them thinking about her and wondering...

As Miyah blows out her candles I can't help but breath the silent prayer for her birthparents that chokes at the back of my throat. Surely God will grant them peace on the anniversary of their loss. Joy. Sorrow. Pain. All intermingled for them those five years ago. I sense it as they must certainly have sensed her sweet spirit the moment they held her.

I'm sometimes made uneasy by the fact that one woman's profound loss has become one of my most incredible blessings. But I know God's hand is in it all and Miyah was destined to be ours even if I don't understand why loss had to be a part of that plan.

Which then leaves the question of how I got to be the luckiest mommy in the world to have these four incredible children?

God is good in his his plans that confound the most spiritual and the wisest among us.

So we continue to count our blessings in minutes, days, years spent with these precious children. Every bit of it is a gift beyond measure.

And what better way to celebrate such a milestone than with a chicken nugget and waffle fry? When we asked Miyah what she wanted to do for her family birthday meal, she said, "Chik-Fil-A* chicken nuggets!" Which is easy (and cheap) enough. It also happened to be Chik-*Fil-A's Family N*ght during the week of Hallow*een, so there were clowns and prizes, along with the usual cow, balloon guy, and free kids meals and ice cream (orange). A ready-made party!

We celebrated a night early because everyone had somewhere to be on her actual birthday. As it was, on the night we did celebrate, Matt had to get to his college class and Megan to dance, so they were only able to join us for a little while.

I know you're not accustom to all these words, so here's the overabundance of photos as usual....

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Mei Lin ran up to give the cow a hug.
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Miyah got a lot of animal dress-up stuff this year (perfect)...
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And she shared with Daddy...
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and Mei Lin.
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And she got a new big girl bike she LOVES!
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Birthday Breakfast
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The Sweet Birthday Girl
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Mei Lin is upset that she can't wear the "Birthday Girl" pin. This face is often seen on Mei Lin these days. Those lips are what first caught my eye in her referral photo...I saw them and knew I needed to kiss those lips.Miyah's 5th birthday (144)
H A P P Y B I R T H D A Y, S W E E T G I R L ! ! !

If Obama Wins

I've been resisting any ideas of going political on my blog...aren't we all tired of this political season anyway? Please accept my apologies for adding to the information with which you've already been inundated, but I felt led to post this.

Let me start by saying that I don't condemn those who've had an abortion in the past. Many women make this difficult decision under much distress or under misleading information. I know there is forgiveness and healing for each of these situations, so I dont' mean to hurt anyone. This is a subject that is close to my heart so it's difficult to remain quiet.

While the war and the economy are the topics of concern for most voters, it's important to note that more lives have been lost as casualties of abortion than all American casualties of war throughout all of American history. And while we're all feeling the pinch financially, Obama would like to use your money to fund more abortions.

So here it is:


-The Freedom of Choice Act (
FOCA) will be signed into law eliminating 35 years of laws that have restricted and regulated the practice of abortion.

-He would very likely offer legislation to eliminate the Hyde Amendment which protects taxpaying citizens from being forced to pay for abortions through Medicaid.

-Abortion will be covered in his proposed national health care plan.

-The Mexico City Policy, which bars taxpayer funding of organizations that perform or promote abortions in foreign countries, would be eliminated.

-Funding for the United Nations Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) would be restored, allowing millions of taxpayer dollars for abortions and forced sterilizations in Third World countries, including China with its coercive "one child" policy.

Born Alive Infants Protection Act and the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act would be overturned.

-Current restrictions on the performance of abortions on military bases would be removed.

The link to the info on partial birth abortion is rather graphic, but we all should be informed of the issues on which we're (essentially) voting. Abortion advocates use a misleading line about banning the practice "except when the health of the mother is in jeopardy," which is a catch-all for an unrestricted practice. The mother only has to claim the pregnancy is causing depression or a toothache for that matter to be excluded from the ban. The truth is, if the mother isn't healthy enough to give birth, she isn't healthy enough to give birth "paritially," as the baby is delivered except for the head which is...well, look for yourself. We should all be horrified and ashamed of a country that would allow such a practice! God help us!

Also, those of us who've heard and read about the horrible practice of forced abortion in countries such as China should be outraged that their $ could soon be funding such atrocities. My own daughters could have been victims of such a practice. In case you are unaware, women in China who have not received "permission" from the government to have a child (it isn't their turn to get pregnant) are sometimes taken from their homes and forced to abort their very loved and wanted child or are coerced to such a degree that there is no other choice.

I'll close with this from Princeton law professor Robert George:

Sen. Barack Obama is the most extreme pro-abortion legislator and presidential candidate ever. While this may sound like political hype, it's actually a matter of fact. As just one example of Obama's radical stance on abortion, he has promised that, if elected, his first order of White House business would be to sign the Freedom of Choice Act. This legislation is breathtaking in its implications, essentially eliminating numerous laws which have protected preborn babies for decades.

""Thirty years of effort on our part, in the pro-life movement, would be taken away in an instant by the passing of the Freedom of Choice Act. Evangelicals and Catholics who are supporting Obama should consider that they will be responsible ... if the Freedom of Choice Act is enacted."
- Robert George

Monday, October 27, 2008

Megan's 14th Birthday Party

I never would have guessed that Megan would choose an ice skating party for her 14th birthday, but she did and I think the girls had a good time.

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Miyah LOVED ice skating and wanted to skate all night.
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Mei Lin...not so much. She chose to drink orange soda instead...and spill it all over her shirt. I'm not sure when this was taken because she fussed most of the night because Miyah got to skate and she didn't...even though she didn't want to skate. She has a reallly hard time doing anything without Miyah.
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Megan's Dance Performance

This Saturday Megan's dance company performed at the annual pumpkin festival in town. The girls danced beautifully.
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Megan Dance

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Pumpkin Festival

Last Saturday was the annual pumpkin festival in our little historic downtown. The street was packed full of families enjoying the beautiful fall weather.

Miyah and Mei Lin, of course, wanted to wear their costumes. They'll take any chance they can to be an animal in public.

Miyah's favorite animal is a lion and Mei Lin's is a tiger or "kitty". Originally Miyah chose a skunk costume, but then Nana sent the lion (along with a few others - thanks, Nana!) for her birthday and she forgot all about being a skunk.

Yes, Miyah's birthday isn't until Wednesday, but who can resist opening presents as they come in the mail? It spreads out the celebration a little.

And yes, Mei Lin is supposed to be a "kitty," which she still says with a "t" in, "I LOVE t*tties," or in the store "Mommy, look at that t*tty!" and now at Hallow*een... "I'm a t*tty!" Mortifying!

So, here are my little wildcats. Miyah was very sure she was the most ferocious lion at the festival. Don't you think so?

Wild Cats
Girls with Daddy and the huge gourd.
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Heather called me sometime this morning and left a message that I just now received.

Heather is VERY SICK and hasn't eaten in three days. She sounded very weak and obviously is not doing well at all. She has started on the antibiotics she brought with her, but she said she would need to go to the doctor tomorrow (later today our time) if she wasn't better in the morning.

Please pray that she will be better when she wakes up and that she will NOT have to go to the doctor. Thankfully she's in Guangzhou now, so there are western trained doctors, but still not an ideal place for a doctor visit.

In case you haven't been following, Heather is in China with her 14 year old daughter, Whitney, and her husband had to come back to the states early. She said that Zion (2) is crying a lot and having a hard time adjusting to the new surroundings (hotel)...and probably to the fact that Heather is sick and not able to attend to him as he would like. Pray for Whitney as she helps her mother and her baby brother and for little Zion as he continues to adjust and grieve.
This is a really HARD situation that needs God's intervention.

Thank you. We'll keep you updated.

She Can Read!

Mei Lin has known her letter sounds for several weeks now, so I had a suspicion she'd be able to read some simple words if I took the time to try with her. Well, this morning I put "HAT" on the chalkboard and she sounded each letter, then with a little help from me, she read the word!

Then she read CAT, MAT, SAT, FAT, RAT, PAT, and BAT all on her own! I have to give most of the credit to the Leap Frog Letter Factory DVD that's been playing in the van. I figure if we spend hours in the van each day, we might as well use it to some advantage...she's quiet AND she's learning!
Mei Lin will be three in January, so I don't expect she'll get much farther than three letter words for a while, but it does open up new avenues for keeping her occupied during the school day. Happy Phonics, here we come!

Since we're on the subject, another great DVD I forgot to mention in my homeschool post a while back is Mathtacular by Sonlight! I would never have thought it, but my girls LOVE it! It's cheesy and low-budget, but either it's entertaining enough or they're geeky enough math lovers to want to watch it over and over...and over again. Miyah (my almost 5 year old) can count to practically infinity, counts by 2's, 5's, tens, and she's always had a natural affinity for adding, but now we find sheets of paper with math equations all over the a little John Nash, Jr. (the guy from A Beautiful Mind). The paper I found this morning said 10+10=20, 20+10=30, 8+8=16, 7+7=14...and so on. Sometimes there's a wrong one, but mostly they're right, which actually scares me a bit.

Enough bragging...I KNOW your kid is sorry to be an obnoxiously proud mama today.
On an unrelated matter, go check out Heather's little guy Zion on Heather's blog...OMG, he is SO adorable! Heather could use some prayer and well wishes as she's sick in China and without her husband...and it was her birthday yesterday! He's actually very smart, too. He was saying, "I love YOU!" on the phone the other day...just five days after hearing his first English word. It sounds like he's talking really well!

I'm hoping to update soon on our busy weekend. Until later...have a blessed day!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pumpkin Patch

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