Saturday, October 29, 2011

Home from St. Louis!

It was quite eventful. But it was good, nonetheless.
First the bad news; then the good :)
We left at 4:30 am Thursday to arrive in Tulsa by 7:30, where we would load up in the Shriner's van.
We are SO grateful for the Shriners!
We arrived in St. Louis at 3 pm Thursday, and they checked us into a hotel. Little Miss was quite comfortable.
We were able to reunite with our friends, Terry and Diane, for supper! We traveled together in 2009, and this is the first time we've seen them since then. It's the only picture I have - sorry for the creep-eye; guess we were looking at the other hunky cameraman.
We were so excited for Kasidi's appointments the following morning, and we were sleeping fine...until I suddenly got sick. Really sick. I'm pretty sure my sickness had nothing to do with the e-coli outbreak in St. Louis, but it sure felt like it.
Even though I was still sick Friday morning, we went to the hospital because we'd traveled so far and waited so long. By then Clayton was feeling sick too - oh no! We spotted the nearest restrooms so we could make the run to lose our cookies (which we did). Between the two of us, we downed 6 bottles of Dasani from the vending machine. And by the time we left at 1:30 we were even more grateful we weren't driving ourselves. CJ hunkered down in the back of the van, and I rested against Kasidi's car seat all the way to Tulsa.
When we got back into Tulsa around 9 pm we'd checked in with the four families keeping the rest of our Krew, and they were willing to keep them another night so we could check into a hotel and try to recover from whatever had knocked us out.
Saturday morning neither of us felt like eating, but we were much better! And Kasidi was a trooper through the whole thing!
I can't say it enough: Thank you to the families who kept our kiddos! And thank you for praying for us!
Now for Kasidi's appointments~

First we saw the neurologist, and he felt really good about where she's at. The fact that she has feeling in her feet is good. The pictures the orphanage took before Kasidi's surgery were such a blessing, because he could see the different tissue that was in her meningocele. He didn't want to take any images because she doesn't have any symptoms of hydrocephalus. So we don't have to see him again for a year!

Next we say the urologist. He also was impressed with where she's at, and thinks she will be able to potty train successfully. Other than returning in 2 months for a kidney ultrasound and cath test, he doesn't want to see her till next year either!

Then we saw the physical therapist and occupational therapist. PT gave us some more stretching exercises to use and recommended AFO braces.

So when we saw the orthopedist, she prescribed the AFO braces and said we don't need to come back till next year! They also think that once she gets the braces on, she'll be walking in no time!

Kasidi was casted for braces, and we'll go back in 2 months to have them fitted and do the urology tests. All in all, it was a great visit with the best news we could hope for! Thank You, JESUS!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

It's a First

For the first time in 18 years of sending kids off to school, when the wheels on the bus went round and round, down our driveway...
I went back to bed.
Yes, I did.
Kasidi and I both.
Kennah was still asleep.
Poor baby had a rough night.
I mean four changes of bedding rough.
First she 'barked' according to Kambry.
Then around 3:30 we heard "Maaaaaama" from the hall bathroom.
She had another kind of accident, climbed out of her crib and left a nice trail all the way to the porcelain throne.
She's resting now.
Even though I did laundry all night long, I haven't started packing 11 people for the next 48 hours.
And I'm tired.
So Kasidi and I went back to bed.
She slept.
I dozed...
or not.
Couldn't stop thinking about what I'm going to do if this isn't a something-she-ate thing, and packing, and a zillion other things.
Because come 4:30 tomorrow morning we are on our way to St. Louis.

Monday, October 24, 2011

So This is the Face...

...of spina bifida?
I've been doing a little research in preparation for Kasidi's appointment at Shriner's this Friday.

Out of curiosity I thought I'd check stats on the abortion rate for babies diagnosed prenatally with SB.

It's hard to get really good numbers, and they vary from state to state, year to year.

But the fact that we can still estimate 50 percent of babies are aborted after being diagnosed with spina bifida is astounding!

This baby with a 'birth defect' has so much heart and personality it astonishes me!
One mama gave her life...

...and now this mama is going to give her the best life possible! I sure can't imagine our family without her!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Girl on the go!

She's working so hard!
Inquiring minds want to know if I spend all day kissing her adorableness...

Feast Your Eyes on This!

Feelin' totally spoiled tonight.
Last night hubby concocted a marinade...
...slathered it on some baby back ribs...
...let it sit all night...
...then let them baste for 6 hours over a bed of hickory chips...
...just so we could gobble them up tonight!
He even threw in some of his awesome corn!
Yep, feelin' the love!

I've been trying for 24 hours to upload an adorable video but Bl*gger isn't cooperating. Maybe tomorrow...

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Broken Things

Ever notice the Lord uses broken things?

Am I the only one who struggles with not wanting to be broken? Oh, how I want to chase my own dreams. But in my brokenness, the Lord can really speak to me and cause me to move.

When I look around our home and see actual broken things (a doorknob, a bar stool, a cabinet door...) they are tangible reminders of my struggle ~ where I sometimes want to be and where the Lord wants me to be.

While I have a wish list of things I'd like to be different: a house tidied up, a schedule set in stone, some time to myself, a vacation (!!!)...the Lord has something better in store.

Remember the impoverished widow in 2 Kings whose sons were going to be taken as slaves to repay her debt? She pleaded with Elisha, and he instructed her to gather as many jars as she could and fill them with the last of her oil. The oil kept flowing until the last jar was full. Then she had enough oil to sell and repay her debt. But she had to break the seal on the only thing she had left, a jar of oil.

How many times can I truly say I've allowed the Lord to use the last of what I have? When I'm at the end of the proverbial rope, will I still try to fix things myself or give all I have for Him to do as He pleases?

You'd think I'd learn because in the few instances I've given the last, He has blessed me in miraculous ways! Look at the ways He's brought our children home! Totally HIM.

And now the Lord is guiding us in how He's going to heal their brokenness.

We are counting down to two very important appointments ~

Two weeks from today we will be home from Shriner's Children's Hospital in St. Louis with answers about our Baby Joy and the medical special need that has kept her from walking.

And four weeks from today we leave for BG Center in NY to seek answers and equip our Teen Treasure for a life free from the maltreatment of his past that has clouded his vision for the future.

The Lord is even using the broken lives of our children to reveal Himself and His miraculous healing and redemption. Even though the struggle to chase my own futile dreams is sometimes great, I wouldn't miss this broken journey for anything!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Change of Seasons

The change of seasons brings new colors, but the cool temperatures also bring the end of life to many once beautiful plants. They will soon wither and turn brown. But a miraculous thing happens to some plants. In dying, they produce seed, and next spring there will be new life, multiplied!

The same thing happens in our new life with Christ. It may seem like we are living radiantly…until we come to know Christ, and then a dying process must begin. We must die to ourselves, surrendering our old self to Him, exchanging our old dreams for His…and then we see new life!

Even though I know His plans are unfathomably good, His promises are not broken and He is completely unchanging and faithful, for me, the dying process is a daily one. Some days I’m in a virtual tug-of-war with the Lord, trying to take control. I know I just mess things up when I do this, and yet, in my humanness I continue to do so. It’s not that I want to go back to the ‘old’ life; it’s just that some seasons bring too much change, unpredictability and even heartache.

We are in such a season now. We thank the Lord for breaking our hearts for the things that break His, and for changing our lives through the miracle of adoption, but following Him is not always easy. Life for our child adopted as a teen has been difficult. He can’t fathom a ‘happily ever after’ because he’s never seen one. And he struggles with the idea that he could truly be loved. As his parents, we are fighting for every opportunity to help him excel. Above all else, he needs to know God’s love. Unfortunately for our son, it must be given in our human, futile, failing strength ~ unless we daily receive the Lord’s renewed mercies and lean on Him!

We know that spring will come, and with it, new life!

I posted this today on Katelyn's Fund blog.

Book Bindery

Since some of you have asked where I had my Bible rebound I thought I'd just share it here. I will tell you up front, it wasn't cheap...but to me it was worth it. It cost me more because there were complete sections falling out of my Bible. But if you've priced study Bibles, you know they're not cheap either! Also, don't forget to G*ogle for a book bindery near you. I'm so pleased with the job they did on mine that I'm happy to share their info with you!


Tuesday, October 11, 2011


I started this post 24 hours ago, then didn't have time to finish it. But it's kind of random anyway :)
I'm so excited to get MY Bible back from the bindery this weekend! It's the second time I've had it bound, and I'm hoping this time it will last.

It's my old Bible, renewed!

What are you two up to? Never mind, I don't want to know!

A bug collection in the works.

No, she is not gluing parts back on ;-)

A bug collection complete - thank goodness!

Of course there was football!

And just playing around

And RAIN! Thank You, Jesus!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Morning Routine

I love mornings that we don't have to go anywhere. It gives us therapy time.
First we try out the parallel bars...
...several different ways.

Then we walk the 'balance beam.'
Next, we transition between equipment.
And we always take time for High Fives for work well done!
You can see the determination in her face.
Three more weeks till Shriner's St. Louis!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Mine...or His?

"Thank God for being able to see all that you have not yet been. You have had the vision, but you are not yet to the reality of it by any means.

It is when we are in the valley, where we prove whether we will be the choice ones, that most of us turn back. We are not quite prepared for the bumps and bruises that must come if we are going to be turned into the shape of the vision.

We have seen what we are not, and what God wants us to be, but are we willing to be battered into the shape of the vision to be used by God? The beatings will always come in the most common, everyday ways and through common, everyday people."

~Oswald Chambers~

So these 'common, everyday' things that have been a thorn in my side are actually the very things that God wants to use to shape my character? I will admit that rather than embracing them for what they are, I am rebuking and complaining about them.

But this week the Lord is gently nudging me back onto the path of the 'vision.' I can't honor Him with a complaining spirit. I can't glorify Him by running from the very tests meant to shape who I am in Him.

I constantly struggle with my right to myself. But how can I claim a right to myself and desire to be His? Sometimes being His is so.very.hard.

Offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life.

Rom 6:13

Sunday, October 2, 2011

I've Got It!

I now realize why I feel incredibly overwhelmed!
I just glanced back at my day planner for last week.
We had physical therapy, Speech evals and picked up 74 mums Monday (sold out - praise the Lord!!!)

Delivered mums and worked Tuesday

See You at the Pole and delivered more mums Wednesday

Four doctor's appointments Thursday (one more in glasses)

School pictures Friday (you know what I mean!!!), worked in the morning, speech meetings in the afternoon, Homecoming...

I think I'm just wore plum out. I need a day off - L.O.L.!
No time for that. We've got more meetings this week, more doctors' appointments, we get to feed the football team Thursday and have 5th Quarter Friday.

But I will worship the Lord and thank Him for giving me the energy to keep going, even when I feel I can't take another step. And I praise Him that in heaven I won't need a day planner!!!!
May He be the center of our attention today and every day.

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