Friday, February 17, 2012

The Exciting Part is at the End.

It has been an exciting couple of weeks on the adoption front.  Working with a Hague country this time, the paper gathering and waiting was a little more intense for the home study than it was for Ethiopia.  We had 2 out of 2 visits completed with our wonderful, efficient, and kind Holt social worker (pictured with us below). Yes, she does read our blog but, believe me, I would have described her that way anyway!
 Our study is at the branch office and the completed packet should be in the mail to us very soon.

The next step is to put the homestudy with our Dossier (life on paper), and get it on its way to Thailand. The homestudy wait, mostly due to background checks from the three different states we have lived in during the past 8 years, gave me ample time to get the Dossier material completed! Ready, set, go! 

We are still looking at about 9 months, praying earnestly that we might be home with her by Christmas.

In other BIG news....we had not had any sort of update on PJ since the information we received last July.  We decided to pursue adopting her in October with the information that we had and were just biting our nails waiting patiently to hear how she was doing. The staff said it was so delayed due to the tsunami that devastated a lot of Thailand earlier in the year. Well,  Monday afternoon we received many pictures and many videos of her taken just last month!!

Before I tell you how she is doing, let me share with you some quotes from a respected international adoption physician we consulted before we decided to pursue this little girl:

"looks like she came as close to death as you can get: miracle she is alive"
"neurologically devastated"
"may never walk"
"possible paralysis to nerves of her throat, could end up with a feeding tube"
"would be cautious of expecting big improvement"

Here are the things that we saw our two year old girl doing in the videos from last month:  

putting puzzle pieces in place

 following instructions

 turning pages of a book



 getting up off of the floor to a standing/walking position by herself

 riding a toy tricycle pushing with BOTH of her feet

 CARRYING the tricycle with one hand while walking

 eating and drinking independently with a sippy cup and SPOON

 listening and dancing to Hillsong Kids!

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits--who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. The Lord works vindication for all who are oppressed. Psalm 103:1-6

Friday, February 10, 2012

Homeschool Happenings

We are in our second semester of school this year! The first semester ended with our Grandparent Achievement Night. We enjoy doing this to let the kids show what they have learned and also to reassure their grandparents that homeschoolers don't just watch cartoons all day. Ha!
Julianna has went through a lot of world history this year and so we made this really long time-line to make sense of it all.  We used some awesome old perforated computer paper--- with the holes on the side. If you need some, I can hook you up from our 50 pound box of it in our basement.
Josiah is traveling through the days of creation and our first semester ended with day four. Genesis 1:16: God made two great lights the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars.
It always gets me that He also made the stars is just a side-note, no big deal or anything.

 Here Josiah teaches about stars.

Julianna had begun learning about Ancient Greece and so she taught us about the art of making Frescoes.

We continued our study of Greece into the second semester. We, of course, held the Olympics in our house this year.

Josiah went into Day 5 of creation studying fish and birds.
We dissected a sardine noticing it's scales and backbone. Both brave souls here discovered that this canned fish is very tasty.
Later on, in our study of birds we made nests from melted chocolate and Chinese noodles. They discovered that these were also very tasty.

We have also been doing our "Love Project" corresponding with Valentine's Day.
 Each morning we go over 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 that tells us what perfect love is. Then for our "project," they draw a scripture about love out of a jar, look it up, and we read it together. They write the reference on a paper heart, decorate it and add it to our love garland.

Hopefully they will be able to remind me of this perfect love on some of my not-so perfect days!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

2012 Book List: The Lonely Recliner

This winter has not been good to my reading chair.

 It has been neglected and left vacant, plagued by the spring-like climate that has lingered all season.  HOWEVER, the weather man just tweeked my ear with the potential of 7-10 inches of wintery wonder this weekend.  Chair, wait no longer.

Here is my No Guilt if Not Completed Reading List 2012:
  • Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream--David Platt
  • Christlike Parenting--Latham
  • Bonhoeffer:  Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy--Eric Metaxas
  • One Million Arrows: Raising Your Children to Change the World --Julie Ferwerda
  • Father to the Fatherless--Paul Boge
  • Adopted for Life--Russell Moore
  • Organized Simplicity--Tsh Oxenreider
  • Fieldwork--Mischa Berlinski
  • Erasing Hell--Francis Chan
  • Shaping of a Christian Family--Elisabeth Elliot
  • Sacred Parenting--Gary Thomas
  • Kisses for Katie--Katie Davis
  • Reckless Faith--Beth Guckenberger
  • Secrets of the Secret Place--Bob Sorge
  • Toddler Adoption--Mary Hopkins Best
  • The Connected Child--Dr. K Purvis
  • Parts of How to Parent Your Internationally Adopted Child