We are so excited to share our Ethiopian adoption adventure, and our CRAZY lives with all of you! Our hope is that it will encourage you to step out in faith to do what God has called you to do! There are FIELDS of fatherless children waiting for someone to care for them, to love them, to tell them of JESUS' love for them...will YOU be the one??

Monday, February 28, 2011

More things that make me go hmmmm....

I have to say, after watching other families bring home their children, and describe their children's behavior....I'm very confused about our daughter...and disturbed.

I've mentioned before about how "good" she is....but honestly, it's a little disturbing.

So today, I heard her call herself "Ava" for the upteenth time....and it just hit me...is this more than a language issue? Does she even know who she is? Really? She always does exactly what I say....she NEVER throws a fit....she doesn't hit, bite, scream, or act aggressive....okay, this is probably a GOOD thing, but...

She sits on the potty as long as I'll leave her there without even asking to get up, or telling me she's "done". And honestly, there have been a couple of times I forgot to go get her...and there she sat...just waiting...

She doesn't fight me when I take her food away when lunch is over...she just accepts it...I could tell her "No lunch today Ava", and I think she would just accept it and go on with her day.

I can say my other kiddos came out KNOWING exactly who they were and what they wanted, and they wanted it NOOOOWWWW! She just waits for me to tell her what to do, or not to do....

Yes, she plays well with the other kids...but she also can be found just wandering with a toy cup in her hand...not really playing at all.

I've always wondered if she was coddled a lot at the orphanage, because she demanded her way....but she is NOT a demanding child...AT.ALL!

Some days I WANT her to demand SOMETHING...ANYTHING!! I want her to assert herself a little bit.... I want to see the real Ava!!! She is so conditioned to follow an adult..she really doesn't know how to express what SHE wants or needs..she's like a puppet in many ways....sad:(.

I have no idea what all this means, other than I have a child who lived in an orphanage for 3 years...but I can't wait to see MORE of the "real" Ava:)! I can't wait to hear her say, "Aw Mom! I don't WANT to stop playing!", "I'm NOT finished with my food yet!", I want to see who God created her to be....and not what an orphanage conditioned her to be...I'm really done with that!

Blabbering over:)!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Blogging for Orphans Day!

Here's the latest from Lifesong!

OCA Mission Moments from Lifesong for Orphans on Vimeo.

They sat in the studio with an expectant glow as they spoke about their children they had yet to meet, but who they claimed as their very own... 

Josh: "As unbelievers, we are aliens.  We are strangers.  We are separated from God.  But God has come in and adopted us, through Christ, to be in His family."

Jenn: "And we're just so thrilled that our family can be a picture of that to the world!  And just like we would never question our true son-ship to God the Father, it's been an encouragement to us to think about, we really don't have to question whether these kids are our true children... cause they are!"

When Josh and Jenn Philpot felt God's nudging toward adoption they weren't sure where they would get the money.  They received a matching grant through the Orphan Care Alliance (OCA), turning the $6,000 they had raised into $10,000, and making it possible for them to bring home not just one child but two!

OCA is a multi-church alliance in the Louisville/Southern Indiana area.  Adoption funding is just one part of their ministry.  Their many outreaches include recruiting and training foster parents, mentoring local foster children, assistance for local churches in launching orphan ministries, international orphan care, and more!  They are also a part of Lifesong's Outside the Walls Network, which connects churches to serve orphans more powerfully together than they could on their own



Monday, February 21, 2011

Let's Talk Faithfulness!!!

Okay, fess up! You wouldn't have clicked on this blog if the title were "Let's Talk MONEY", would you;)?

But, it's not really about money....it's about God's faithfulness to provide for the task He's called us to do:)! So I'm totally okay with talking about that, how about you?:)

On the left hand side you will see a list of fees and when they are due during the adoption process. Now, I LOVE lists..especially when I get to mark things OFF the list..so that's what we're going to be doing! We're going to mark things off that little list(it really is "little" in GOD'S economy;)), and watch the Owner of all that is, show His faithfulness in our journey!

And hopefully along the way, you will be encouraged to step out in faith as well!

We will also be doing some fundraising that we didn't do before, so as soon as we are signed up with the agency, you'll see more of those opportunities.

We are excited to watch this all unfold...KNOWING there WILL be roadblocks, hurdles, obstacles along the way(cause the enemy HATES what we're doing)...but that's okay! It's just going to give the LORD more opportunity to display His GLORY...and that's what this is all about anyway...Making God's GLORY known to the ends of the earth...and especially ETHIOPIA:)!!!!

If you would like to donate at any time, there is a donate button also on the left-hand side. You can make it anonymous or not, it's up to you:). We treasure your prayers and support like no other!!!

I'll end this post with one of my favorite quotes of ALL time!

"My friends, adoption is redemption. It’s costly, exhausting, expensive, and outrageous. Buying back lives costs so much. When God set out to redeem us, it killed Him."-Derek Loux(http://louxfamilyblog.com/)

God Bless!!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day was filled with lots of refined, processed SUGAR....and lots of LOVE of course;)!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Where's Caleb?!?!?!?!?

This is Caleb....

And at the urging of a fellow blog buddy, I'm going to start sharing more of the day to day life of a "large" family...the good, the bad, and the ugly!!

Let's start with the "ugly"(no...seriously....it was REALLY UGLY!!!)

It all started with Caleb, my 3 1/2 year-old son. You see, since the day he learned to walk(at 10 MONTHS), I spend most of my days asking, "Where's Caleb?"....because he is ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS into SOMETHING!!! I'm almost positive he has a "play disorder" of some type....because he would rather..AHEM..."explore" than play any day!

Which leads me to yesterday....when my oldest son RAN into the room yelling "the dog pooped in the cat's litter box!! It's, like, HUMONGOUS, it's, like, as big as AVA!!!"

So, thinking that of course he must be over-exaggerating, I went to the utility room, and what greeted me there....OH.MY.WORD!! THAT was NOT dog poop...that was NOT cat poop....we all looked at each other and in unison said, "CALEB"!!!!!!!

I immediately grabbed Caleb and demanded to know if he in fact, had done this horrible thing...to which he said, "No Mom, it was LUKE!!" Okay, seriously....why do I even bother asking...like he's really going to admit, right?!?!?

So, for the next 5 minutes I scooped my son's poop out of the litter box, cleaned the pair of jeans he had apparently used to wipe his behind with, disciplined my wayward son, and once again wondered, "WHY"? WHY, does he do these things? What even crosses his MIND? YES, he's potty-trained....NO, there was no one else in the bathroom inhibiting his going number two in the correct spot...!!!!

Then I just give up wondering....siiiiigggghhh!!!

And did I mention how much I LOVE this child....I really believe God gave me extra love for Caleb, to get me through days like this:)!! LOVE HIM!!!

And, at least he "hit" the litter box!!!:) And can you imagine the leg strength it took to NOT fall back in it...cause he was apparently standing on the OUTSIDE of the litter box?? Soooo, we've got good aim, and strong legs....great skills/attributes....WRONG use of them!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

TODAY is One Day/One Lunch Day

Please check out this link to find out how YOU can help a child in Africa by giving up one lunch! Plus, read this teenage girl's amazing story!


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Update On Ava

Ava has been home almost 7 months now!!! She is doing very well for the most part.
She is still attaching well, playing well, and fits in perfectly in our family.

Although....I still have some concerns...she has only gained, maybe, two pounds since she's been here and none in height. I know she gained at least 3 lbs, and 3 inches between our visits in Bulgaria, so I'm hoping this is just a lull of sorts. Still wearing 24 mos. clothes and size 6 shoe(and it's a little big)...so stinkin' tiny!!

Her language HAS gotten better, but she continues to speak in third person(i.e., "Ava eat", "Ava drink", etc.). We're really trying to address this, but it's very difficult for her to pronounce certain sounds. Like, short a....she has a very thick accent...which is funny, because we never even heard her say three words the whole time we were visiting last year;).

She follows directions well, if they're short.... Too many words confuses, as you can imagine. She WILL NOT/CANNOT tell me when she has to go to the bathroom....she just waits for me to take her. When I ask her at dinner if she is "all done"(I know, bad grammar, but...), she hands me the plate and shakes her head and says, "No all done"....okay, what's up with THAT!!!

She is the SLOOOOOWWWWEEEESSST eater in the WORLD!!!!(okay, maybe a little over-dramatization there...but not much;)). This drove me bonkers as I spent most of the meal saying "Eat Ava"...now I just take it away, without say much, when the other kids are finished...which honestly, I think she is happy about because she doesn't have to eat any more:), but it's just not a battle I want to fight any more. I mean seriously, this girl could put away the food this time last year!!!! I'm sure it's all still new...after 6 months??????????

She has started some "nonsense chatter" which is a sign of poor attachment, so we're also nipping that in the bud as well.

She loves to read books, and sing songs and play with "doh". Her play is still a little immature for her age, I think. She IS learning to do puzzles...but colors are eluding her...she just doesn't get it... She basically wants to be wherever we are, doing whatever we're doing etc....:)

She wants desperately to have a "conversation", so her newest thing is to walk in the room and say "Wheresa__________", even if said person/thing is right beside her. I still wonder if she has some sort of short term memory issue....;)

We're also working on NOT sucking her thumb....which is going pretty well. She wants to please us, so she's trying to not suck it....and if she's busy, she doesn't need it anyway:)!

She is also learning to "pray"...it is so cute!

As for me.....I refuse to be a hypocrite here...it's still tough....better, but still with some ugly days.....

It's just reeeeeaaallly hard adopting a toddler that you have NO baby history with....apparently I needed that....BUT, we keep moving forward....praying and waiting for that day, when I can look back and say, "Wow, look how far we've come "!:)

Does this scare me as we are moving toward another adoption? YEP!!!! I tremble with fear! A LOT!!! I just have to believe(SOMEHOW!) that God's got this! That he'll bring us to the other side, unscathed and stronger for having been down this road. That HIS Spirit in me is ABLE to do what I cannot seem to do on my own!!