2 Corinthians 12:9 "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness."

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A Relaxing Trip

Our family recently returned from a 5 day trip to visit friends in Charleston, SC.

It was a much needed time of relaxation as we prepare to become a family of 5!

We LOVE visiting the Charleston area and we LOVE seeing our friends.  

We always go on a double date while where there and this time we decided to take a dinner cruise, which was wonderful.  The weather was great... The food (BBQ, mac and cheese, cole slaw, and sweet tea) was delicious... Even the drunk man was only slightly annoying!  He gave us a good laugh when he pointed out what he thought was Fort Sumter to his friends.... Sorry, drunk man, that's the California Dreamin' Restaurant! 

We were able to go to the beach a few times and just SIT... 

We exercised 3 of the days we were there... You wouldn't think that exercise on vacation would be fun, but it was good to get back into doing something active.  I hope to continue, and in fact I did when we got home!  Now to just keep it up through the hot and humid summer...

We ate some delicious food while we were there... My friend (and all of her helpers) made Chicken Bryan from the Carrabba's cookbook and it tasted exactly like it does at the restaurant!  It's a very involved recipe but it was well worth the effort.

We are always sad to leave and can't wait to go back again sometime!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Last visit!

We are only a few days away from the end of our LAST visit!

This visit will end up being 12 days and it has been a good visit overall.  "The boy" is still getting used to having a big brother and big sister who are on his side.  He is still getting used to our family and our crazy schedule.  He is still getting used to sharing a room.

We have seen improvements in every area and we are thankful for that.  We know that there is a strong chance that we will not face the tough issues until he actually moves in.

He still refers to his foster family as "mom" and "dad" and talks about getting to go "home" in a few days.  That is all to be expected because that is the life he's known for 3 years.

He also talks about his "new school" every time we drive past and he has been asking more questions about his teacher and when classes start and end....and if they will have a basketball to play with. 

During this visit, he has gotten the chance to meet more family and friends.  He is doing very well with all the new people. 

It will be a little strange to send him back to his foster home this week, but he needs those 10 days to spend with them.

I know there will be a transition time when he moves in....We're all already use to each other, so that's good.  But he will have to process that this is his home and I think that will be hard for him.  He will still be able to call his foster family a few nights of week, but that will become less frequent as he gets settled into our family.

On our end, we've all had to work on being patient in answering the many questions, reminding him about different things, and getting used to everything.   

We're looking forward to becoming a family of 5!

Monday, June 11, 2012

We Made It!

I'm a wimp....

You'd think I'd be used to not seeing my husband, with his crazy shift and off duty work....

He was gone for 12 days this spring with our son on a mission trip to Ukraine and my daughter and I did just fine.

But he was out of town for 5 days last week taking a class for work and that was enough for me!

I've said before I don't know how wives handle it when their husband travels for work....

I certainly don't know how a wife handles a military deployment.

I guess I've found my limit on what I'm able to handle.  I can do the crazy shift work- having dinner ready at 5pm one week and 7:30pm the next... Being quiet in the house to let him sleep after being awake for 24 hours... And whatever other crazy stuff that seems to happen each month.

But I can't handle the being gone for a week or more with little to no contact.

Sure, we talked briefly each day during his lunch break.  And we even got on Skype a few times in the evenings.  But it's just not the same.

So, I am glad he's home again and hopefully he won't have to travel again for another year!


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Stack of Books

I've got a stack of books that I'd love to read this summer.  I think perhaps I've set myself up to fail because I can't remember the last time I read 8-10 books in 3 months.... So maybe I'll extend that timeframe out a little into the new school year and get some reading done while I wait on soccer games to start.....

So here's my really eclectic list of books I'm planning on finishing in the next 4-6 months.....

  • The Fitting Room: Putting on the Character of Christ by Kelly Minter.  I am reading this over the summer and meeting with 3 friends at the park each week while we go over what we've read, answer the questions in the back of the book, and challenge each other to live out what we've learned.
  • The Excellent Wife by Martha Pearce.  I'm reading this with another friend.  We meet every other week to talk about what we've read and to talk about the struggles we might be having that week and apply what God says about wives to our marriages.
  • The Truth About Islam by Anees Zaka & Diane Coleman.  The kids and I are going to be studying world religions this year, so I want to read up on Islam and contrast it with Christianity so hopefully this book will be helpful in that way.  
  • World Religions & Cults 101 by Bruce Bickel & Stan Jantz.  This will also be a big help in our study of world religions this coming year.  I strongly believe that Christians need to know about other religions so that we can share our faith in a more effective way.
  • Authentic Spiritual Mentoring by Larry Kreider.  I am a third of the way through this book and it's been good so far.  My goal is to finish the entire book this summer and possibly even review the beginning part...
  • The Busy Homeschool Mom's Guide to Romance by Heidi St. John.... This one is pretty self explanatory.....
  • Not a Fan by Kyle Idleman.  This book has been recommended by a few of my friends.  The back of the book says that it will "challenge you to consider what it really means to call yourself a Christian."
  • Adopted for Life: The Priority of Adoption for Christian Families & Churches by Russell D. Moore. I have a feeling I'll blog more about that book while I'm reading it.
  • The Ambition by Lee Strobel.  I had to throw a "just for fun" book in there somewhere!
  • The Big WHAT NOW Book of Learning Styles by Carol Barnier.  At some point we will be homeschooling "the boy".  Until that day comes, I want to learn all I can on how he can best learn and I think this book will be a BIG help in that area.

I'll post an update when summer is ending so we all can see how many books I actually read and what I thought of them!


Monday, June 4, 2012

Homeschool Conference

Our family went to our state's Homeschool conference last week.

Usually, just my husband and I go.  We use it as a nice weekend to get away, regroup from the previous school year, spend time with another couple we are friends with, be encouraged by the speakers and have fun buying new curriculum for the coming school year!

We didn't go last year but when we saw the list of speakers for this year, we knew we needed to go back.  And we decided to bring our teens with us!

So, this year was the start of a few years of going to the conference as a family.  We spent our time differently, but we were still encouraged and we still had fun!

So, what did I learn at the Homeschool conference?

  • "Your marriage represents the front lines of defense in your home, mom. The enemy knows that if he can take out your marriage, he's got a better shot at your kids.  Guard your marriage as though your kid's lives depended on it. In many ways, they do." (Heidi St John in a session called "The Busy Mom's Guide to Romance")
  • If you can't get away with your husband for 24 hours (preferably more) without children, your marriage is in trouble!  At some point you'll be an empty nester and you have to know your spouse! (Voddie Baucham)
  • If you are "too tired" to be intimate with your husband, you have a priority problem, not an energy problem.  Rearrange your priorities to have time and energy for your husband!  (Voddie Baucham)
  • Carol Barnier is hilarious!
  • John Stonestreet made too many though provoking points to boil it down to one or two for me to post.  And, he's a nice guy!  (Both me and my husband were able to meet him and chat for a few minutes)
  • All those visits with my dad to his office in NYC growing up paid off in navigating the crowds and getting to where I needed to go.  I call it "catching the subway" which just means I'm on a mission and I'll walk fast and pass people to get there!