Tuesday, July 26, 2016

It has been so long I couldn't even remember how to sign in....15 minutes later and now I'm almost too tired to write anything. But I will....

The last two years have been pretty rough and as the saying goes...if you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all. So there you have it. Several times I would log in to write something and it was always something negative and dark...so I would delete and log out. Not everything has been bad, but the bad is what drains the energy...no energy means no writing.

The highlights from the past 2 years....

I am now 51 and not liking that number so much. Yes, it's just a number, but sadly my body matches the number. Hard to keep hopes and dreams alive when you feel you have truly crossed over the hill and are cascading down the very bumpy other side.

I have gained some grandsons...I now have 5 beautiful and wonderful grandsons. Oh  how I adore them! They range from 8 to 1 years old.

I lost my dad. He passed on May 23rd, 2015....it was so deeply and incredibly difficult. I still find it difficult. As a Christian and a believer in eternal life...I guess I shouldn't hang on so tightly to the loved ones...be happy they have been freed from this world...but my flesh aches and my eyes leak...and it just sucks! I hope to write a blog post about that....eventually...

I lost three beloved pets. My Great Dane (10yrs old) Lily passed in August of 2014, our perfect and very sweet black cat (16 years old) Princess passed this last February, and my handsome and dearly loved gray shadow...my Weimeraner (12 years old) passed this last June. Another deeply rough loss....that's all I can type about that....hard to see through blurry eyes.

We gained a couple of new furry family member....LeeLa a 2 year old Chihuahua a year ago July and we now have a 9 week old kitty by the name of Prim.

We have fostered 17 kiddos so far but have been on an extended break. A couple of the kiddos within the last couple of years were pretty hard on my and the family, but the hardest part has been working with the state. The demands and the rude and ignorant caseworkers. It just gets to be too much. If all I had to do was answer the endless phone calls from caseworkers, and attorneys, and placement workers, and counselors, and CASA worker and the list goes on and on.....then it wouldn't be so bad but to have 5 kid in 4 different schools and a husband who works 11-12 hour days...I needed a break. I also babysat and beautiful little guy for over a year. He was beautiful and I loved him so....but boy oh boy was he a challenge...but I'm beginning to think most little ones are anymore. So I am on break and truly seeking the Lord on what is next. So..."LORD what is next???"

My oldest son moved him and his family of 4 to Salem, Oregon. Only an hours drive away but oh how my heart ached to see them go.

My oldest daughter and her family of 5 now live in Northern Washington...stationed there by the US Navy. Closer than Hawaii but quite a drive. I get to see them more than ever but still not close enough for my liking.

My oldest (at home) daughter graduated in 2015 and started at a community college, got her first job and just purchased her own car. She is now making plans to move to Salem to live with her brother and his family. Another pain in the heart...but so thankful it's not with a room mate, friend, or (ugh) boyfriend!

My next oldest, at home, did not graduate on time so we are looking at other options for her. She is a sweet and beautiful young lady but allows the pressures of this world to weigh heavy on her mind. She just started a new job. With a ton of prayer....we will see what direction this road goes.

My next daughter has struggled horribly since school year 2015. It has not been easy or pretty. It's heartbreaking and to be honest, many days I feel like throwing in the towel. It really takes a toll. I love her so and believe God has wonderful work set ahead for her. I pray daily....He will get her there.

My only, at home, son finished his first year of middle school. It wasn't the easiest but he is such a sweet sensitive boy. Trying to find his way. I dread the new school year coming. I need prayer warriors that's for sure. He was in  track for the first time and did amazing and loved it. We were notified just before school was out that our middle school will no longer have sports. We don't have many options in our neck of the woods so it...well it sucks. Can't be anymore eloquent than that.

Then our youngest. Oh my goodness how she has grown. She started wearing glasses and has gotten so tall. She does the best she can. She is a happy girl. I am begging God to help her stay that way. Praying the turmoil in the house does not affect her adversely.

That's the update for now. The husband and I are carrying on....striving to keep our eyes and hearts focused on God. Not always easy.

If you actually took time to read this blog...thank you. I hope to get back into posting again....God willing!

My handsome boy (he loved when I called him that)...Sirion...the one that makes me hope that God does allow pets in heaven...I hope this guy will be waiting for me with my loved ones.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Coming to a close - Goodbye 2014 and goodbye to my 40's.

Well I pretty much blew it on blogging in 2014. I would sign in many times and then delete what I typed. Couldn't seem to form any coherent thoughts....then I struggle to see clearly. Yes I need glasses and I am putting it off. Don't judge! Ha! Then my PC crashed....I did get a laptop later but I don't seem to type as well on it. Much better now than before though. So here I am in all my typo glory...ready to ramble on.. In June a few days before the school year came to a close there was a shooting at our high school. It was an emotional and overwhelming day. School was just a few minutes short of starting when an announcement came over the PA system the school was in a lock down and students were told to go to the closest classroom. They didn't take it too seriously at first until messages started being received over cell phones and ipods. That morning I chose not to watch the news and then I got a text from my oldest girl..."mom, we are in a lock down." I asked her if she knew why...but she didn't. We thought it was probably just a precautionary event..like what had happened a few months earlier at a dance held at the school. I then received a phone call from a friend who works for the Portland School district and she said,' Malissa, there was a shooting at the school....have you heard from the girls." My heart fell into my stomach....I got off the phone and then turned on the news. I attempted many times to contact my other teen to no avail. Fear gripped my soul. Oh how I prayed and prayed!More text messages...phone calls. Then....on the news...a report from the wife of the assistant principle...She said she was in communication with her husband...she asked him if anyone had been shot...he said, "yes." I sobbed. Literally sobbed! I couldn't believe it was happening...at OUR school. I watched the news, I prayed, I texted family and my pastor, I prayed, I texted my daughters...I prayed! Then my oldest texted me and said, "mom, someone is banging on our door." I told her...don't worry honey...just listen to your teacher and be quiet. All the while feeling like throwing up.It was about that time I heard that the police were making a sweep of the school. Then...a text came to me...my other daughter...she was safe...she couldn't get her text messages to go through. I could breath again. It was about 2 hours later after a tense wait in a mall parking lot that I had both my girls in my arms! hallelujah! That day there were two families there who did not gt to hold their children. It was a sad and painful time. I will never forget the feelings of that day. My high schoolers did not get to take their finals and summer started wonky. It was then a strange summer. This last June brought me a new grandson....I was blessed to be in attendance at his birth as well as my two older teen daughters. It was a glorious birth...aren't they all. He is so beautiful and joins 3 other beautiful and perfect grandsons. We then had a placement of a foster girl. One of the most difficult placements we have had. Not just the poor little thing herself but dealing with the state. A hateful caseworker and ridiculous demands of our time and energy. The affects the little one had on my youngest daughter and my two grandsons I had to make the decision to have her transferred. It made me sad to do so...but it was necessary. It was such a relief. I then made the decision to take a break from the state. It is such a sad mess. Such a broken system and yet they are in charge of precious children. Just terribly sad. July and August brought great sorrow and struggles regarding one of my children. When you think you have experienced great trials...and then a new one comes along...it can break you down like water on salt. It was a dark time....we came through it. Changed but we survived. In August my California Navy kids moved to Oak Harbor Washington. It is only a 4 hour drive. We have been blessed to see them about 4 times now. I love it. My grandsons love going to Nana's house. The first time they went to leave and head home my 4 yr old grandson got big giant tears in his eyes...ugh! Then we reassured him he would be back soon and they were....now it's not as hard when they leave. My two older girls were in the musical 'Little Shop of Horrors' and the oldest had a solo part. I was so proud of her...proud of both of them. This was totally out of their comfort zones. Closing night we had 16 family and friends in attendance. It was fun and really blessed my girls. All my kids are now in school. They have good teachers and classes...with the exception of a couple of teachers.... My Washington kids announced at Thanksgiving they are expecting their 3rd child. I am excited. I do hope for their sake they have a little girl...but not matter what...it will be loved. They also adopted their first dog. A 2 year old Springer Spaniel Pointer. She is a sweetheart and so well behaved and great with the kids. Her name is Stella. The baby is due in June but we are hoping for a May baby since their 3 year old has a birthday in June. Whatever will be will be! The middle schooler enjoyed a season of Volleyball though it is difficult when you are not the strongest player on the team to even get a chance to play...makes it hard to better your skills...but she stuck with it and worked hard. I now babysit a 3 month little precious boy. I want to bless his Mommy who is a single mother of two. I remember how difficult it is to raise kids as both mom and dad. One income is not easy and leaving your baby in order to go to work to make a living is not easy as well. She is doing a great job and I hope to be a blessing to her as someone she can trust her most valuable possession to and as someone who prays for her and encourages her. My parents are doing as well as possible. My dad is frail and has started using a walker. He celebrated his 81st birthday this last August. His parents and siblings all passed away by the age of 70...he never expected to reach his 80s. I am so glad he has. My parents have been married 62 years. I am thankful. My kids are growing all too quickly. Seems time truly does fly! They are all so wonderful...even the adult ones. I am so blessed and so grateful to God. If my children are the only thing I contribute to the Kingdom of God then a blessed woman am I. There was an opportunity to join Casting Crowns as a backup choir come this January...in New York at Carnagie Hall....ON my 50th birthday....seemed like a dream come true...Oh how my heart would swell at the thought...but it was not meant to be. Makes me sad....but that's the consequences of choices in life. Be it my choices or the choices of others. It's a huge bummer....my all time favorite Christian Band, in New York at Cargagie Hall? Wow!!! But I will pray for those who did have the money to participate. I will pray for Casting Crowns. I will pray for the Holy Spirit to fill that Hall on January 23rd...at least that is something I can do to participate. I guess that's that in a nutshell. Just the highlights. A new year....a new desire to blog more....God bless 2015. God Bless America. God Bless the servants of God. May millions come to know His saving grace this coming year...and maybe this will be the year we see Jesus return. God Bless you and keep you

Monday, January 27, 2014

I'm already 49?!?!?

My birthday has come and gone and I am now in my last year of my 40's. Seems rather odd saying my age...49...it just doesn't seem right. It's not that I am so 'young at heart' but I did get kinda stuck in my 30's I guess. Though my mind and heart are still not caught up to my chronological age, my body has. Aches and pains and failing eyes. gads! I have managed to lose a few pounds since January 1st and keep doing some sort of work out. I have not been consistent but I am doing something most days. I reinjured my back in November and I am still struggling through that. It's pretty frustrating not being able to do what I normally do or as long as I normally would do something. I am still hopeful it will get better and it will go back to it's pre-existing condition. I know my extra weight has contributed to the problem. I have been able to walk farther on the treadmill without wanting to throw up due to the back pain and I can walk through the grocery store longer without whining and whimpering as much. So, I guess it is improving...some. So, 49! Hm...I remember when my mom turned 40...she seemed 'soooo old.' 49 doesn't seem too old these days. I would prefer to be in my 30's but it is what it is. Age never really bothered me too much. I think maybe that's because I was the youngest in family, I was always the youngest of my friends (due to marrying someone when I was young and they already had kids...moves you up a few age brackets) and then when I worked outside the home I was usually the youngest in my departments. Now I am one of the 'mature' women at church. I no longer work outside of the home but when I get around the moms of my kids' friends...once again I feel my age. Because of adopting my younger kiddos, that now puts me into a younger age bracket. Life is weird...interesting...surprising...just as it should be. I do wish I had advanced electronics when I was a young mom. What a difference in my life it would have made to have the ability to connect with family and friends and people from school. Oh how I would have loved pinterst. All I had was a library in a small town with very outdated craft books. I couldn't afford to buy them. When I left the Willamette Valley and my husband and kids moved to Easter Oregon, oh how Skype, FaceTime and Blogging would have helped. My faith was as strong as it should have been and I didn't rely on God as much as I could have. I felt so alone and so trapped. I made a few friends but it wasn't like my family. My family was 8 hours away and a mountain pass stood between us. I felt I was in another world. There were so many blessings. We had 43 acres. We had cows and chickens, and pigs, and horse. I milked a cow and gathered eggs. I made home made butter, bread, and canned our garden goods. It was the life I had so wanted....but I didn't have my family or my church family. I never connected with anyone as deeply. It made it hard. I tried filling my time with my kids but even that was struggle. I became a mom too young. I didn't know how to parent. Only what was modeled to me and that was not necessarily the right way. But twist and turns in life take you in different directions especially when you are the one controlling the ship. Making choices I shouldn't have. Going down roads that were not the best choice...and then somehow getting to where I am and knowing now God was with all the way. I know in my heart my choices did not please Him. I know he had an easier route for me to take, but nerveless...He still loved me through it. He will still get me to where He wants me. I still suffer painful consequences of the past choices I have made, but I also experience the blessings of a life redeemed. Still not where I should be in my faith walk, but still walking. Gaining strength everyday. If this person I am could go back 20+ years and take with me what I have learned, I do believe things would have been different....at least less consequences to experience. I must keep moving forward though. Life is not what I would desire it to be right now...but I know it could have been worse and I know I am not dead yet so there is still more life to come. More weirdness, more surprises.... I have a husband who goes to work everyday to make wages for his family. A husband who works hard to be able to support us so his wife can stay home. I have 5 (at home) amazing kids that bless me everyday! They are so beautiful and so perfect. I have 2 adult kids who married wonderful people. They have given me 3 grand sons and there is one on the way. How beautiful and amazing is that?!?! God is blessing me more than I deserve. After I have turned my back on him twice in my life...He still continues to bless me. What an amazing God He is! Soooo...I'm ONLY 49 and God willing I will walk this amazing life for many more years to come and will be blown away to where He allows this life to go. Oh how I hope from this day forward I can impact peoples lives for the better. I pray I no longer lose loved ones or acquaintances due to my selfishness or my blindness...speaking out of anger! I pray I can impart love at all times....even when it's hard. I pray I can keep my trap shut when God so directs. I pray I can be found good and faithful when my time on this earth is over. I pray when I celebrate my very last birthday I can say, 'Hallelujah' this was a great ride...take me home...I am ready for Jesus to write my Epilogue...yes...my Epilogue! Hallelujah!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

I have many times signed on to write a blog post and then there are too many interruptions or I feel I have nothing of value to write...so I end up signing off. It's been several months since I posted last. Our last three foster placements were all transferred, either to other foster homes or family. It was a huge challenge this time. The last wee one we had (or was allowed by us) to have the power to keep our home in a turmoil. She was only 3 years old (turned 4 while she was here) but she had a very challenging personality that did not mix with the majority of my household. She, for good reason, had a very negative spirit and could throw the biggest screaming tantrums I have ever experienced. If she didn't have such a negative effect on my family, I really believe she could have been loved through it. She did get returned to a parent and in this case I believe that was a good thing. So, we only had her 4 1/2 months and I hope we were able to plant some seeds of love and joy...because she sure needs that. The state transferred while my other kids and I were in California. I was not happy about it and it all started coming down the day before I left for our trip. It was stressful and ugly and for that...I decided to take a break from the state...not the kids but the state. That is the most challenging aspect of foster parenting, for me that is. Enough on that... We decided to send my husband to Texas for a visit with his mom and some of his sisters. I have been trying to get him to go but he always backs out. He would want me to go but its so difficult finding someone to help with kids and dogs so it was just easier to send him. I finally talked him into going alone and it went great. He was thankful he went and so was I. We then decided to send the kids and I on a vacation. We went to San Diego to visit my two grandsons and their 'parents.' Hee hee. Ok...I went to see my daughter as well. While we were there we surprised them with a trip to Disneyland, California Adventure, and Knox Berry Farm. They were shocked and excited. I had bought each of them a Disney Tshirt and wrapped them and had them open them at my daughters house. It was so cute to watch their faces. I had to leave my daughter and grandsons behind when we went to Anaheim, but they handled it well and we were only gone 3 nights. We had a great, yet exhausting, time. The rest of our vacation was spent at my daughters house. I loved being with them. My heart started to ache a couple of nights before we had to leave...just the thought of leaving them was so painful. Never knowing when we would see them again is so hard. The boys get so sad when we leave too. Little did we know though we would get some great news.... Once home, we barely adjusted to being home when my dad took a tumble in their carport and broke his hip. My mom and I spent the night in the hospital waiting for him to have surgery. It all went well. The next day was Thanksgiving and I woke up from a nap...sick! So Thanksgiving was...different, but some family members showed up and pulled everything together for my mom. It was nice. Dad spend a week in the hospital. He had problems getting his bowels working right. He was in a lot of pain. When he was discharged they admitted him into a rehab center...aka Nursing Home. He did not handle that well and I don't blame him...nI have worked in them...I know what they are like...but it couldn't be helped. He needed to get stronger before going home. A week later my mom and him checked him out without permission...they were done. He is now doing great. Needs to get stronger...but otherwise doing great. Christmas then showed up in the blink of an eye. I wasn't ready. Had the few gifts bought that we had agreed on, but I wanted it to last longer. I enjoy the lights, the music, the feeling...it passed too quickly. One highlight for me is on Christmas Eve, my two oldest girls (15 & 16) and I sang trio of O'Holy Night. I loved it. It was a blessing to me and from reports, it was a blessing to others. Here we are, into a new year already. This year will be different...it will be better! My husband and I will get healthier and smaller. Praying for the foster kids that will be coming into our future. I still have a heart for adoption but we are getting older. My husband turned 50 on the 1st of January and I will be 49 this month as well. It is in Gods hands. His will be done. This year will be focused on digging into Gods word daily, increasing my prayer life, speaking more positive in all situations and taking better care of myself. As my pastor said, "rebuilding the temple." Amen! God is leading...God is Good...and God is my King!

Friday, August 30, 2013

Mixed bag of emotions

Just as I entered the joy and comfort of summer...the state began calling. Two cases and three kids later we had 8 kids in our home. It quickly became rough. Almost overwhelming at times and that's not even the kids. It's everything involved in having kiddos placed. The priority is getting the kids, who are scared and overwhelmed settled in. Then the next step (before you can blink an eye) is the phone calls start. All the people who are wanting this and that from you and the kids. It felt pretty much non stop. Phones calls in and out. Appointments and parental visits. I had reached my limits...at least I felt I did. The kids were 5 (with delays and speech impediment),1 yr old needy baby, and also a 3 year old girl from another family. I won't go into details of all the requirements and requests, but it's taxing...especially when you already have a marriage and 5 kids, 3 dogs, cat and home you are managing. Not to mention other emotionally draining events happening with adult kids, family, and friends. I raised a white flag, humbled myself and had to call the state a month later and declare it was too much. I had to have the sibling set transferred. It was gut wrenching...something I will never forget. It was completely bitter sweet! The relief was great, but the baggage left behind of me feeling like I failed them was heavy. My family sighed a big sigh though. Three weeks later and it appears the "long term" placement we had will be transferred soon. That is bitter sweet as well. She was a huge challenge with emotional outbursts and a strong will, but about a week and half ago she took a turn for the better. Huge improvements. Now who knows how the transfer will affect her. Which brings me to a rant.... I understand how the state wants to find 'family' for kids that are removed from their homes...but it's too much. They are paying 'family' members to care for these kids. So called family that doesn't even know the child or has only seen them once or twice. Such as second cousins, Great aunts of the abuser and so on.....I could be wrong but I feel if kids in state care didn't come with assistance that some of these 'family' members wouldn't be so willing. I pray I am wrong...truly...I worry because my heart is deeply seeded with the little ones. I want them to be loved and cherished and cared for. I worry they will become a fixture within the home. Also this policy/law has made it to where kids are now experiencing more transfers within the system. Instead of being placed in a foster home and then staying there until they can be returned to their parent/s, they are then transferred to another home, causing more trauma. It's mess...and there is no easy answer. I feel for the parents who feel trapped within their lifestyle, I feel for the state workers who are torn between their hearts, their job, and the judges. Then I feel the deepest for the wounded little ones. They have no power, no choice, and suffer the greatest of the consequences. PRAY for them...pray for the innocent all over the world. School starts next week and I feel I need another month. I am not ready and neither are my kids. I dread with all my being...now isn't that an encouragement to my babies!!! sigh! I love my kids being home. I love my home being homework free. I love have the flexibility to be spontaneous. Summer break is soooo short! On a high note, we western Oregonians had a great summer. We actually had sunshine and heat, but not too much heat. It was fantastic! Hate for it to end. It was beautiful. Had alot I could have updated but my time is up....so sayeth my little ones. Three day weekend ahead...praying all families are blessed and safe. Gods peace on each of you

Thursday, February 28, 2013

My daughter in Japan

The exchange student we had for the month of January was amazing. She fit our family perfectly. We were so nervous and yet again...God called us to it...and He worked it out perfectly. She was so sweet and gladly accepted our crazy house and our affection. Two days before she left we were in my car alone and I mentioned how she would be leaving soon and I couldn't believe it. She started to cry. Oh my goodness...that touched my heart. I figured she was ready to go home. The day she left, she sobbed and sobbed and didn't want to let us go! We all cried. Even my baby girl. She was so broken hearted to see Mayu (My-oo) leave. It was so difficult. We have stayed in touch. What a blessing. She calls me Mom. So I consider her my other daughter. God is amazing at the plans he makes and the blessings he has in store for us. Ones we would never imagine in our wildest dreams. I never imagined myself having a exchange student. I never imagined falling love with a young girl from Japan...a mommy kind of love. I never imagined what an impact a young lady from Japan would have on my kids. I never imagined our family would bless a family in Japan. I can't wait to see what else in store. I am excited, but in no hurry, to see how the Lord will use my kids in ministry....maybe even in Japan.
I have a daughter in Japan!

On it's way out...

February is already on it's way out! I just can't seem to say it enough...time sure flies! I have tried reducing my activities in order to create more time for family and my home and yet there doesn't seem to be more time. God knows what He is doing. Times are hard and will get harder. If the days were long and seemingly never ending, our hearts could not endure. Watch the news for an hour and see the truth in that.

The family is going great. Alot of illness this year...stomach flu and resporitory stuff. There is never a moment goes by that someone is blowing their nose, sniffing, coughing or clearing their throat. Quite an orchestra! But other than that all is well.

I have lost 17lbs and gained back about 4. Fatigue has returned. I felt great for a while and then wham the energy was gone. So frustrating. Last week was not a very good diet week. I do so much better when I plan our meals in advance and have everything purchased. So easy and yet many times I just don't do it. But I am still not giving up. I MUST get some of this weight off. My poor body needs me too. If food just wasn't so darn good! Talking with friends at church last night...we discussed how when you get sick to your stomach, such as stomach flu, and then you eat something or smell something and it adds to the feeling sick....you usually never want to eat it again. I came up with a great diet. Get the stomach flu and make yourself eat everything that you love...maybe once you are better you won't desire it anymore. But then again I worked for someone who had stomach bypass surgery, once she returned to work she discovered that everytime she ate chicken she would throw up. Guess what...she continued to eat chicken. She would shut her office door and we could hear her throwing up. Sad, but true. I would probably be just as bad.

An exciting event for our family is a new puppy. After our last puppy, several years ago, I told myself I would NEVER get a puppy again. Too much mess and too much work. Well...I have felt the need for a little dog, complete opposite of our two moose dogs at the moment. I have been searching for about 8 mths. I wanted just the right dog. I finally found her. She was at the Oregon Humane Society and she was THREE months old. ugh!!! But I saw her and knew she had to be the one. We went and met her and fell in love. She had 3 holds on her. They were able to remove two of the holds while we were there but we had to wait 24 hours for the other hold. It was a painstaking 24 hours. No one showed up for her. They needed to pick her up by 10:30 am....I called at 10:35...thought it kind to give a few extra minutes. As soon as they said she was still available for us...we jumped in the car and went. She is great. ALOT of work...but great. The kids adore her, our Great Dane adores her...our Whiner (we call him) does not adore her. He doesn't really even tolerate her. She scares him and irritates him. He is better this week, but still gets irritated by her. Other than that...it's been fun. She is so much like my kids...my daughters. She is a sweet, snuggly little spitfire! She is a 5 1/2 lb half Papillion and Pomerian. We named her Mia (Me-ah). I think I was needing a baby. Haven't had a baby placed with us for almost a year.

Wonderful news for our family is my Hawaiian daughter and her family will be moving to San Diego. My son inlaw has re-enlisted for 6 years and was assigned to San Diego. We had hoped for Washington State but am happy with SD. It's a world closer and cheaper to get to than Hawaii. They will be coming to visit in March. Not sure when but know they will. Can NOT wait to hug them and hold them all. It has been a year February since I was with them. Too long. The longest I have ever gone without seeing my daughter. We are all very excited. I am praying she finds as nice a townhome as she had in Oahu. I will greatly miss having a home connection in Oahu though and if I ever go there to vacation they will be on my mind all the time, seeing the all the things we did together. I am very proud of my son inlaw for the decision he did. It was not an easy one. I am one happy mama!

I have not started any new ministries. I did join a ladies bible study. We meet once a week. I am still on worship team and enjoy it very much. I have more control of my voice since I had my thyroid removed, that pleases me greatly. Not sure what the Lord will do with me. Right now I am caring for my family, and interacting with bio families of my adopted and foster kiddos. That hasn't been easy and I pray I am a good witness. I spend most of my time caring for my home. If that is all I am ever called to do, I will be satisfied....but I am sure the Lord has more in store.

Going to attend a Chris Tomlin concert in April. I can NOT wait. I love praising and worshiping with 100's-1,000's of others!!! It's amazing.

God is good all the time. I love Him and I hope my life glorifies him.

Friday, January 11, 2013

2013....Happy New Year, again...already!

Like is but a breath, a vapor, a mist...the bible refers to and what truth once again. As I look over a few pages of my blog, starting at my last entry which was August of last year, I can't believe the time that has passed and the events that have unfolded and it is all in the blink of an eye. Some of that is good....most of it not so much, especially when it comes to my kiddos. Oh how I desire for them to stay little and young.  When they become adults (I know, because I have two) it seems that time slows and then you can catch a breath and enjoy the pace...then what happens? They give you grandchildren. It's back to the races as you watch your sweet grandchildren spring up before your eyes. But, what amazing beauty God has blessed us with. Life is full of sadness and heartache and tragedy....but the thread of beauty is always there. Sometimes blatant, sometimes subtle. blatant would be to hold a newborn and sit in awe of the miracle that you are beholding. Subtle would be to catch a glimpse of one of your children sitting, doing nothing but just sitting there and have tears well up into your eyes as you marvel at the beauty of that creation! My focus is always the children, whether they are members of my household or a little one in the store or one in a far away country who is needing a home. There is so much beauty in this world to behold, and it swirls all around us and I appreciate it, I glory in it. Such as Mt. Hood. I gorgeous, majestic mountain that I can see from the area I live in....a creation of God that deserves appreciation....but have a child walk past me and let me see the beauty of their souls through their sweet eyes, it will bring me to tears every time.

Much has happened since August of course. We have one foster boy living with us. A great kiddo. So handsome, so tender hearted, gentle and kind. It's been good and bad having him reside with our little guy LB. They are a year apart and play hard, but they also destroy and cause quite a ruckus. Playing hard means more noise and minor devastation left in the wake. That's just the way it is. Only they could through a cloth ball the size of a baseball that is so light it can't even be measured, hit the pull string on a ceiling fan causing the chain to swing up and hit the glass, shattering it all over my mothers bed. Yeh....who would have, could have thunk?!?!? Not me and for sure not them. His reunion with his mother eminent which is good. We thought before Christmas but now it appears it will be slower than that. Which is fine. He loves his mom and enjoys the visits but doesn't seem in too much of a hurry to make things final. There is history and the history would make anyone hesitant. Thankful for his sensitive spirit.

Since August I have dealt with tennis elbow and oh how painful. In October my dad suffered an episode which they are classifying as heart failure. It was a moment of dizziness and instability, and then weeks of weakness. Many tests and everything came out good, oddly enough. His heart is just wearing out. My parents celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. I had the honor of organizing that event. It wasn't what I had wanted it to be but they seemed very happy. All their kids (5 of us) were there and the majority of their grand and great grands were there. Church family and friends also came. It was a good time. My parents looked happy. Another one of the moments of beauty and blessings.

I had the remainder section of my thyroid removed in December. In 2000 I had the left side removed due to enlargement and this time the right side. It was pretty darn big and uncomfortable. Still recovering from that little stint! Taking daily meds has been ok. Wasn't looking forward to it and it would be nice not to have to...but it is what it is. The week after surgery I had the stomach flu along with 3 of my children...that was fun...NOT! Eventually all our household and a few other family members had it as well. Christmas was here and gone before I knew it. I wasn't ready for it to leave...but it did Anyways. New Years was quiet and relaxed....!

I have family members still unemployed or underemployed which is so sad. Things are not better in that area. Yes unemployment is down, but they don't factor in that most of the employment is part time at 20 hours or less. No one can make a living on that. Still hoping things will turn around.

January we welcomed a Japanese exchange student. Have never hosted an exchange student before so this exciting. A little nerve wracking at first, but put faith in God knowing that if he allowed the counsel to pick us then God had someone special planned for us. We picked her up on the 8th and she is wonderful. Does not speak English well, but she tries very hard and she is just a beautiful young lady. Very sweet. We are enjoying it...especially my youngest BG. They adore each other and are having a blast. My BG gets ALOT of attention but doesn't always get the play interaction she needs. Mayu does that. After school they will play for a good 2-3 hours. Very endearing. It will be hard to let her return home, but I am sure she will be more than ready. A month away from home is such a long time. I am grateful for the opportunity and so are my two older girls.

My Hawaiian kids are doing good...except my daughters Navy husband is deployed right now for a month and a half. We are thankful though he was here for the holidays and for my grandsons 3rd birthday. That was an answer to prayer. He is deployed to San Diego right now switching out his ship. Always feel sorry for my girl when she is alone. sigh!!!

What is in store for 2013? Who the heck knows....we don't even know how many hairs are on our head, but the one who created us does....so I choose to stay by his side. I am sure this year will be much like all the other years, bad times, good times, and great times!!!

My local adult children, my son and his family are such a blessing. It's great to have to have a continuing good relationship with my dinlaw. Plus I get to see my grandson weekly. For that too I am so grateful

For you for this new year: The Lord Bless You and Keep You , the Lord make his face to shine upon you and give you peace.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Bye Bye Summer Vacation

I just don't know how other mom's do it...how they manage to find time. I had hoped to write more during summer break...I even cancelled all appointments for the month of August...too the month off from Worship Team at church and yet...summer vacation ends this week. I am, again, profoundly sad. I am not ready for my kids to go off everyday to the places called 'school.' I like them home. I like for us to get up when we are ready and not because the alarm insists. I like that my kids have to be called in for dinner when the sun is just beginning to set and not because they didn't finish their homework or because it's dark before dinner. Yeh...snivel whine! I should be saying how happy and thankful I am that my children have a free education. That my daughters as well as my sons can get an education. I should be saying I am grateful my children are healthy. I should be looking forward to only one child at home during the day. I should be excited that I only have to fix snacks and lunch for one....and for all those things I am sooooo eternally grateful. BUT this is my blog and this is my end of summer Va-K whine!!! Stick around...the next showing will be in 365 days.
Goodbye Summer Vacation!!!
Attached are a few, very few, pics of the summer activities. We had birthdayS every month during the summer plus a few other activities. Picnics, waterparks, camping, parades, festivals, Oregon Zoo, and swimming.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


God is Awesome...His love is amazing. His grace is bewildering! I love the Lord and gave Him my heart...and several years after that I gave him my life...and yet there are times when I take it back and do what I want...and then fail miserably. With that said...it always blows me away that MY GOD, MY SAVIOR will still bless me. I don't mean bless me in the midst of my sins...but will bless me in spite of my sins. This brings me to this post.....When I look at the face of this amazing, beautiful, precious little girl...I get blown away....HE chose me to raise this precious one. There are thousands upon thousands that God the Creator could have chosen to raise these kiddos in my home...but He chose me. He chose me to raise this little girl...HE chose ME! I do not take that for granted. I am so thankful and so grateful.

This little one came to us when she was 2 months old....she became ours 1 1/2 years ago....yesterday...she turned 4 years old. FOUR!!! This little being makes me laugh...cry...feel pride...feel joy...feel love! She did not come from body but she sure has planted herself in the deepest part of my heart....and because I feel this way about ALL my kids (big and small) I am posting a pic of 'most' of them....I cherish each one.

Thank you God my father for these gifts!