Monday, January 20, 2014

What I Love About FB

I woke up this morning and started my usual few minutes of silent prayer before I finally dig myself out from under my covers.  I started praising God for the recent wave of support and encouragement that He has showered me with, and suddenly a mental list of my FB friends started scrolling through my head.
   I know people love to be critical of social media and to focus on its negative aspects.  Let's face it, though, this new way of communicating is here to stay.  As a matter of fact, someone on my page said she was taking a FB break the other day, only to realize a day or two later that since most of her kids' schools and other activities communicate with parents via Facebk, she really couldn't unplug.  I, for one, have loved all the new technology and advances in communication for years.  I cannot fathom my first adoption trip to China without having Skype and my laptop to communicate with my hubby and kids back home.  By the time I went to adopt Evie three years later, I only took an ipad and got to Facetme and FB every day, right from my room.  Beyond this, being a military wife has been made infinitely easier by all these changes.  I can keep in touch with family when stationed far away much easier now than ten years ago.  When my hubby is far away I can keep in touch with him too.  Plus, I can keep friendships alive even from a distance.  Friendships that are very real to me - but let's be honest.  When you move every three years, homeschool, and have six kids, it is pretty much impossible to keep in touch with all the people that you are continuously leaving behind. I am always moving away from people I care deeply about, and I love the opportunity to still be involved in their day to day lives on some level.
Most importantly, I have found my FB friends to be a constant source of encouragement for me.  Yes, I still interact with people face to face.  I still go to church, small group, and homeschool co-op.  Yet the people on my FB feed expand my horizons.  I have friends serving the Lord in Haiti, Nicaragua, and Africa.  I have friends that waited, cheered, prayed and cried along with me on either one of my adoptions - and I did the same for them.  I have friends at all different stages of the adoption process, friends that I could not realistically call every day, but whom I can reach with a quick typed word of encouragement or shared celebration.  I have friends navigating the crazy waters of homeschooling along with me, friends who are sending their first kids off to college just like me, friends who give themselves completely to their home and their children, friends who have picked themselves up by their bootstraps and reinvented their lives, pursued new careers, or returned to old ones, friends that buried husbands who were WAY too young, friends that buried children who were WAY too young, and the list goes on.  The point is, I draw inspiration from these people daily.  I have witnessed people going through all kinds of hurdles, overcoming mountains, and coming out on the other side still praising His name.  His power and might are displayed every day when I scroll through my News Feed!

 I  also love it when I log on to FB and see an encouraging Bible verse one friend posted, not knowing it was just what I needed to hear.  Or when someone asks to be backed in prayer, and then shares how that prayer was answered.  Just looking through my list of friends makes me smile because it is a reminder that we have a God that is very much at work still today.  Satan would have us believe that he is winning the fight, but FB actually has served to remind me that there are plenty of people out there still seeking to serve my God - and they are very passionate about it.  I think instead of shaking our heads at what is negative out there, we should use the social media at our fingertips today to make our voices louder and to strengthen each other.  Next time you think of getting "unplugged", plug in to someone on your list that might need an extra word of encouragement or a prayer that day.  I, for one, love the reminder that I am not alone.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


We have settled into a new routine, and day to day life runs pretty smoothly (as smooth as it can with 6 kids in the house). We are so settled into this new routine that it already feels like Evie has been here forever, so nothing ever seems like huge news.

Evie is still terrified of all animals (including ants). So today was a huge milestone, when I convinced her that the fishies in the tank at the Natatorium weren't so bad after all!

Monday, February 25, 2013


What a whirlwind few weeks it has been! There is a stomach bug that has hit most of us, of course, one at a time. The only ones spared so far have been our two Chinese beauties, probably because they built up crazy strong immune systems in the orphanage. At least I pray they will ultimately be spared. Most of us have just felt not right, maybe a little queasy. Josiah and Lanie had it the worst, vomiting, diarrhea, the whole nine yards. I'm the latest victim and am trudging through my day today. I am actually waiting for Josiah at swimming lessons right now and can't believe I made it here. Don't know how I'm going to do dinner prep though. I am pretty spent.

Luckily, I have a new helper this week. James is now a licensed driver, so he's been able to drive himself and his siblings to track practice, and then he drives himself home. He gets done quite a bit later than the middle schoolers, so he can't bring them home. Luckily, I have a carpool set up so I only have to pick up once a week. And just so you know how spoiled we all are, the school is all of a mile and a half from our house - and still I complaint about driving. The big deal really is having to get the little ones in and out of the car.

So I've had the excitement of seeing James drive off on his own for the first time, and in that same week Josiah learned to ride his bike! One driving off in a car, one zipping off on his bike! Little steps of letting go, each one. Each one is bittersweet.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Still Amazing

This child is still amazing me daily.  She is just so sweet, so confident, so full of spirit.  Her vocabulary is just exploding  Today's word was "Hey".  She'd tap me on the shoulder and go "Hey!"  We went to the commisary and I stopped in front of the milk and she shouted "Water".  (well, close).  She shouts "BARNEY" when she sees any Barney character.  She still chatters away in Chinese most of the day, but I love that English words are sneaking in there. 

Josiah still doesn't play much with her, mostly because he's really at a loss as to what to do with someone he can't really talk to.  He is also smitten with her, just like everybody else around here.  Everytime he gets a kiss he gets a huge smile on his face.  Today, he pulled her on the wagon all the way home from the playground (several blocks).  He keeps talking about how cute she is, too.  He has also decided he's really going to need to learn Chinese!

Yesterday, I took Abby, Lanie, and Josiah on a base sponsored trip to Nagano to visit the snow monkeys.  I couldn't even consider taking Evie along because she is so terrified of all animals, and I didn't want a repeat of the Safari Park. It turned out to be a great decision, because you had to climb up a snowy mountain for about 2 km.  Josiah was completely burned out about halfway up the mountain, and I could not possibly carry him for very long.  If I had brought Evie too, I probably wouldn't have made it all the way up.  It was a treacherous hike too, with all the snow and ice.  Josiah did not enjoy his time at all because he was so tired.  I'm sure just having gotten over a stomach bug earlier this week didn't help.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Home Sweet Home

We have been home for one week now and it has been amazing. I am still in awe at how smoothly everything has gone. Evie is adjusting beautifully and so is everyone else. She is sleeping well (if getting up at 6:30 am constitutes sleeping well), is a good listener, absolutely loves her siblings, and is really a joy to be around. For those in the process of adopting that like to hear the good, the bad, and the ugly, I hate to tell you I have no ugly to report (not yet anyways). Things are going way better than I even expected they could go.

Evie is still not wanting Jim and I to both be gone at the same time. That being said, she succesfully made it in the nursery through the entire church service yesterday. Having big brother Josiah in there surely helped. I explained to her beforehand in half bad Chinese and have English that momma was leaving but she shouldn't cry. She sat in the same spot the whole time and just observed and looked sad, but she didn't cry.

She doesn't want us to call her Fuyuan anymore. She yells "Wo da Evie" everytime we use her Chinese name.

Ni Hao Yall