Monday, July 28, 2008

Can You Help?

How would you like to use that toilet everyday? This is the "bathroom" the children share at the Shizong Orphanage in Yunnan, China.

It looks awful, but what's worse and what the photo doesn't tell you is that the SMELL is unbearable in that little room because the "squatty" doesn't flush. Can you imagine the filth and disease?

The children don't have a warm shower, just a hose pipe in the ceiling, which you can imagine doesn't get used much, especially in the winter months. There's no sinks to wash their hands and faces or brush their teeth.

The children at Shizong will live every day of their childhood in this place without much, if any, hope of being adopted because there is no international adoption program for this orphanage. The conditions here are deplorable. There's just no money and the kids suffer greatly.

But there IS good news! My friend, Jeannie, is raising money to build a new bathroom facility for the children in Shizong and she needs to raise $5,000.

If you could, please go over to her blog and donate $10 or so to give these children a healthier environment.

Click on:
Annabelle's Wish

Thank you!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Beach Getaway

Megan spent two weeks at the beach with Hannah and her family. She had the best time! Here are a few photos...

Megan and Hannah

I'm sure she's talking to me...tellingme how much she misses me;)

I have no explanation for this...
Boogie boarding

BTW, I've caught up on the last couple of weeks with about a million posts and pictures below...

Following Frosty Footprints

Today while I was reading a book to Miyah on a totally unrelated subject she said,

Miyah: "I had a dream that there was frost on the ground and I was following God and walking right behind him in his footprints on our side street. I went wherever He went."

Me: "Wow, what a beautiful dream! What was that like?"

Miyah: "It was nice, I was smiling the whole time."

She also said that he wore a blue shirt and blue pants.

I told her I would write down those details so she could always remember the special dream that God gave her.

I don't remember if I've ever had a dream where I've "seen" God. How about you?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Wyatt's Adoption Day Celebration

Sweet, Adorable Wyatt...Happy Family Day!

Yesterday we had lunch (and batman cupcakes!) with Heather and her two youngest, Wyatt and Zoe, to celebrate Wyatt's 2nd adoption/family day.

Sweet, Beautiful "Zo Bow" (Zoe)

Friday, July 18, 2008

One Berry, Two Berry, Pick Me a....


(Sweaty) Me with the Girls
Zoe, Heather, and Wyatt

Zoe, Miyah, Wyatt, Mei Lin
The kids had so much fun blueberry picking, but it was A LOT more work than we'd expected. Heather commented, "Now I know why blueberries are $5/lb at the store!"...they're a lot of work. And it was hot. But the kids had a great time and Miyah later said, "This is the best day in my whole life."

We went home and made blueberry pancakes for lunch!
Mei Lin fell asleep in the van, so Miyah and I had time together to read "Jamberry" and "Blueberries for Sal" while we ate our scrumptious pancakes.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Happy Adoption Day, Zoe!!

We celebrate Zoe's adoption day with her today. The girls decorated adorable mermaid cupcakes that Zoe's creative, energetic mama made.
Hannah was over playing with the girls while her mom took Claire to the doctor, so it was an especially wonderful playdate/party.

Miyah and Hannah

(BELOW) Can you spy all four guys sleeping in my family room?
Matt and his friends make their rounds to a different friend's house most nights of the week, playing video games until dawn...and we were next on the rotation, I guess.
These boys slept in the family room until 1:15 PM while four little girls and three adults were going about normal business. If you look at the picture above, the girls are nearly in the same room as the boys, making all kinds of racket. The exhausted XBox-playing adolescence didn't even flinch.
But that's not even the most incredible part. The two guys sharing our couch are each about 6'6" tall. And Andrew and Matt are on the floor looking like Stretch (Andrew's upper body and Matt's lower).

Ahh, to be young again!

Monday, July 14, 2008


My girls have a fascination with the couch cushions. They'll be quietly (yeah, right) playing something and one will say, "Cushions!" and they'll both run into the living room and tear the cushions off of the couch and start jumping and sliding and just plain carousing! It's like their own Gymb@ree right in the house.
And every once in a while Matt decides to get in on the action, too.
It's a good thing I hate my couch and love seat. I'm kind of hoping something will "accidentally" happen to them (sh!).

Enough horsing around...time for studying

Sunday, July 13, 2008

It's Tough Being Human

Yesterday the girls were laughing and playing so carefree...they're always so full of joy, and I stopped to soak up some of the joy that radiates from them.
Then I said to Miyah, "It's nice to be you, isn't it?" and she suddenly stopped and said rather seriously,
"No, I wish I were an animal."

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Happy 29th(??) Birthday, Chris!

Tonight we went to Chris' surprise party...he's turning 29...again.
(Angel and Chris)
The girls love to go over to Miss Angel and Mr. Chris' house because it's so kid-friendly, has an awesome pool, and the girls always leave with a little bag-full of candy:).

We all had a great time!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Fourth (and Fifth) of July

I hope you're ready for a lotta red, white, and blue!
We love the 4th of July around here.
The 4th of July neighborhood kiddie parade tradition continues!
It's funny because a few of you already asked me if the girls won an award in this year's kiddie my question for you is...what makes you think we care about winning?
Could it be the $$$ spent on anything red, white, and blue?
The hours spent decorating?
Pat's late night excursions to the neighbor's garages scoping out the competition?
I'm kidding. But sadly, it's not too far from the truth;).
Well, like most obsessive behaviors, this can all be traced back to childhood issues. Pat's sister sent us some pictures of Pat and his brothers and sister from when they were little and one of the pictures will explain it'll have to scroll down a bit to see the photo.

Our two American Girls in their over-done bike and stroller.
Ella, Miyah, Mei Lin, and Hannah ready to ride in the parade.
It was raining and all these (crazy) neighbors still came out for the parade.

Miyah's favorite part is the popcicle. It didn't matter that we were standing out in the rain, she wanted to stick around for the after-parade popcicle.

Wet, sticky, and stained. Is there a better way to celebrate?

And here it is, the tell-all picture. I guess some traditions (ahem..competitions) die hard. Pat's in the front. I've told him we're expecting a replica next year.

And just because you're dying to know (not because I care!), the girls each got 3rd place in their divisions (stroller and tricycle). Looks like we have our work cut out for us next year!
Later that night we headed over to Angela and Richard's home for ice cream and fireworks. AND we met their newest American citizen, Miss Claire, who just came home from Mei Lin's orphanage in China while we were in San Antonio. She's so sweet!
BTW, she won 2nd place in the stroller division, but we still love her. She's giving us the "better luck next year, sucker" look, isn't she.

Hannah and Miyah watching fireworks (and Megan and Matt with Jacob in the back).

On the 5th, Ken and Kelly (from Awaiting Addie) invited us over for a cookout and fireworks. We had a great time.

I got a break as several adults were sweet enough to entertain the girls...including Kevin, who was brave enough to supervise the ice cream sandwich eating.

And I'm not at all sure what to title these ?? Miyah walked up to me like this and said, "Mom this would be a cute picture! Pirate Bunny!" so how could I resist. Then, of course, Mei Lin said, "Me too, mommy!"

I hope you all had a great 4th!