Thursday, November 29, 2012


Since we will be driving to Texas for the first time this year, we decided to put up our Christmas decorations a week before Thanksgiving.  Yes, I know some of you are sighing, but hey, we didn't have Thanksgiving at our house anyway!  Decorating for Christmas is one of my favorite things to do and my whole family enjoys immensely, especially Karis!  She and Noah remember where everything goes, and if I want to put something in a different spot, they will have none of it!  

Karis and Noah get to decorate their own tree every year that sits in the living room. 

Proud tree decorators!

Noah posing by his favorite Cars ornament!

The kids also like to help with the BIG tree, and thankfully, they do a good job listening to where Mommy wants the ornaments placed.

I love that Karis is making sure Noah doesn't fall. They are both standing on the arm of the couch.

Karis got to put the star on top this year. I love Noah's expression, is that a laugh or what?

Yes, the Little People nativity set still gets played with at our house every Christmas!  

Monday, November 26, 2012

Zoo Field Trip 2012

A few weeks ago, we took a family field trip to the North Carolina Zoo!  It was our third time to go, and we were not disappointed.  This time Noah really enjoyed himself and kept saying it was the best day ever!  We had just finished our study of the human body for science, so we decided to go see some of the animals we would be studying for the rest of our science year.  The kids were very disappointed that the polar bear exhibit was closed due to repairs, but I think the baby gorillas made up for it.

The first picture on the bridge again!

Letting sleeping bears lie!

Daddy and  his munchkins!

How many frogs do you see in this picture?

Family pic

Reenactment of Noah in the ostrich egg

Giraffes always fascinate me.

The kids are making their own lion face!

Two baby gorillas with their mommies and daddy.  Watching them interact was so exciting and fascinating.  We spent a good hour just sitting and laughing at them.

Last of all, the lone chimpanzee.  He looks so much like I act like when I don't get what I want.  Oh how embarrassing is that. If I could only think about how I would look if I did this in public. Oh Lord, please convict my heart when it looks like this!

We had a fun filled day with many new memories.  Seeing God's creation is one of my favorite things. It always reminds me of His vastness and that He is too lofty for us to comprehend.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Little of Everything ...

Yes, it is after Thanksgiving, and I am now getting caught up on what we have been up to.  Karis an Noah both played soccer again this fall. It was a much different season for both of them.

Team Red Sox: 4 year Champions!

Justin coached Noah's team again this season.  The Red Sox were undefeated except for one game that they tied, ( I happened to coach that game for Justin because he was out of town, and I haven't lived it down yet!).  It was a fun season for Noah and his team. He scored a lot of goals and learned the value of team work.  He also got to get some passing practice in.  His defense improved immensely!  This was Noah's last year in 4's.  He will move up to the big 5-6 league next season, a much bigger field, and a goalie!

Coach Dad and Noah with his first trophy!  He was so excited to have one just like his sister!

Karis was on team Purplicious.  She had a fun time making new friends and learning some lessons about playing hard no matter the score.  Her team struggled to score this year, they only scored three goals the entire season.  Karis scored one of those goals!  It was her first time to score in a long time.  

Team Purplicious

We also enjoyed a fun Halloween Party at some of our dear friends house.  The kids like dressing up.

Iron Man and Princess Karis

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Pumpkin Farm Fun!

Over a week ago, our family went on our monthly CHOW field trip to Vollmer Farm.  We were so glad to have Daddy join us and to spend a whole day together!  The kids and I have been to this farm a few years ago, but I would have to categorize this day as "the best day ever."

Our trip started early in the morning with some waiting to ride the bus/hay ride.

Karis and all her friends!

We then took a class on how to make butter, which the kids got to enjoy with a cracker after it's completion.

Noah shaking (churning) the butter.

The kids then learned all about cows and how they produce milk and how to milk a cow.

Karis milking the cow while Hannah watches!

After the morning of learning, we were free to experience the rest of the farm.  The kids enjoyed riding on a barrel zip line, potato sack sliding, jumping on the BIG oval trampoline, playing in the corn, and eating lunch with our friends.

My two pumpkins!


Family pic, minus one!  

Happy Fall!

We finished the rest of our day shopping in Raleigh for the kids some winter clothes, doing a Trader Joe run, and eating dinner out.  A day of pure fun for our family!

Friday, September 07, 2012

A Note To My Son

With us now counting down the months until we get a referral and get to meet our son, he seems to be on my heart so often.  It is so different to not be carrying him in my womb and yet my heart is already longing and aching for him to join our family.  I look at the table and see and empty place, I look in Noah's room and picture him playing, I look back in the car and see an empty car seat, etc.  I have an ongoing letter to Karis and Noah, so I decided to start his.

My Dear Son,

     I can hardly wait to meet you, wrap my arms around you, kiss you, engulf you in love.  Even though I have never meet you and someone else carried you in her womb (I thank God for her), you already feel like mine.  I cannot wait for you to meet your sister and brother, to play with them, laugh with them, fight with them, and love them.  Our family feels incomplete without you here, and I pray the Lord will give you to us soon.  This year the Lord has been teaching your mommy, yes, I can't wait to hear you call me that, patience in abundance.  Right now my life is in waiting: waiting for God to show us where He wants us to serve Him in Texas, and waiting for you. God has asked me to wait for many things in my life, and this is proving to be the hardest.
    I ask God daily to protect you, feed you, give you love, and allow your heart to welcome us as we embrace you into our family.  I love you my son, more than you can possibly imagine.  Without even feeling you in my womb, my heart is longing and aching for you!  


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

August in Review

I don't have any exciting pictures to post, just a recap of August.  We spent the first 10 day of August in Texas visiting our families.  A blog post will come from that visit once I get pictures from my sister in law.  This was the first time I didn't take the camera, hence no pictures.  Despite this, the kids and I had one of our best trips visiting with both families.  The kids got to spend lots of time with all their cousins and some second cousins.

After returning home from Texas, the kids had two days more days of summer before Alethia Academy started.  We started school on a Thursday to slowly get back into the grove.  This proved a wise decision, and we are now almost finished with week two.  Karis is breezing by with lots of math review, finishing the last of her reading curriculum, learning about dictation and harder grammar, and her favorite, learning cursive.  
Noah finished his letter sounds this week, and we will spend a few more months reviewing and making sure he truly gets them before he starts learning to put the sounds together.  I have been very impressed with his handwriting skills and patience to make all the letters look perfect.  His numbers are proving harder to write, but his knowledge of math facts and other math are the same as his sisters.  We started a new amazing History curriculum this year that the kids and I are enjoying immensely.  Science is also proving a fun and exciting subject as we study the human body.  I am so thankful to have friends that suggest good curriculum and some that write it themselves!

The kids and I have also been able to get to know our across the street neighbors this summer.  They are from India, and we have had them over many afternoons to play.  It has been a joy to share the gospel with them and their moms and to see my children serving and loving them.  I am praying for the Lord to open eyes and hearts to the gospel.

We are continuing to seek God's guidance in our seeking a new job in Texas and in awaiting our adoption.  Life for us is a waiting game, but I am thankful and confident in the One who holds the future in His hands.  His time frame and His peace are what continue to give me peace, joy, and strength to spend and be spent here as long as He has us in this wonderful place.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Beach Vacation 2012

Our annual beach vacation started on a slightly sour note this year.  The week before, Noah had a high fever for five days.  Monday night before we left, Karis started running fever.  After giving her Tylenol every four hours, when we left Tuesday, she still had a fever.  She was a trooper; took her medicine, helped pack, and didn't get frazzled when she wasn't feeling well.  Her fever did hinder our beach time some, but we still had a fantastic time.  

We decided to to "unplugged" for this vacation, no tv, movies, internet, etc.  We did bring Justin's ipod for music in the car, since the cd player is broken and for me to have something to listen to while I ran.  We got to the beach late Tuesday night and all went to bed.  Justin graciously took the kids to the store on Wednesday morning so I could run.  After breakfast, we loaded up all our stuff and went to the beach.

We spent lots of time playing in the waves, sand, and walking along the beach.  I think Noah enjoyed the waves more than anyone else this year.  He couldn't get enough!

The kids always love having Daddy's undivided attention!  My two boys! 

After a few hours, Karis started feeling bad again, so we went in for the day.  While she napped, Noah and I went to the local book/toy store.  Of course we came home with a new book for him and Karis.  We played lots of games, especially enjoying our two new games: Trouble and Wits and Wagers.  For the first time, we went to the pier to look out on the beach.  We saw lots of fisherman but missed seeing anyone catch a fish.

Thursday morning after running and breakfast, we went on an adventure to another town about 30 minutes away, Morehead City.  I wanted to eat at this restaurant there called The Sanitary Restaurant and Fish Market.      The food and atmosphere were good and fun!  We then strolled into a few shops and headed back to venture out on the beach again.  

Karis didn't make it quite as long this time and Justin started not feeling well.  I had to go get some medicine for him, so I got a movie for us to watch as we ate our pizza for dinner.  After the movie and some more game fun, we sent the kids to bed.  This is how we found them about a half hour later....

Karis read Noah all the books he brought!  

Friday Justin took the kids to the beach while I cleaned up.  Noah finally jumped into the deep end and went under in the pool!  A big milestone for him.  

On a side note: thanks to Bill and Anne Highsmith for letting us use your beach house.  We enjoyed every minute of it, and I hope I cleaned all the germs out!  

Every year that we have gone to the beach, I am reminded of how BIG and POWERFUL our God is.  He knows the number of grains of sand, He tells the waves where to stop, He commands all nature, and He holds me in the palm of His hand.  There is no other place I would rather be!