Thanksgiving 2013


Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

Psalm 100:4

I have a lot to be thankful for.


I'm thankful to have Pryor and Boone home. I'm thankful they are smart boys. I'm thankful they are good boys. I'm thankful they are fun.  Boone is especially funny and keeps us laughing.  Well, at least he keeps Mike and me laughing--not sure the other kids think Boone is as funny as we do.

Don't mind all the Thanksgiving dinner on Pryor's face.


Shepard has been home for over 3 years.   Who knows what triggers a memory from the kids' past.  It probably has something to do with the fact they now are not as scared, unhappy or ashamed, even though the real shame goes to the people who choose not to understand or have compassion for where the orphans have lived and what they've been through.  We were in the kitchen eating last week and Shepard said, "In China I got very sick and had to go to the hospital."  I asked why he was in the hospital and  he said, "I ate out of the trash can." 











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A whole lot to be thankful for.

Dianne and Darla


Sunday we went to church of course. It is a huge priority in our family for the kids to always be in church on Sunday and they rarely miss... even if I do.


The teens have their own building behind the church.  When we dropped the kids off at their hangout in the back we ran into my niece Lacey. My older sister and her husband go to a different church, but their five youngest girls go to our's. LOL My sister is good with it.


Then ran into Arden walking across the parking lot. She drives herself now.  As you can see from the "14" on our sleeve, Arden is a senior.  I can't believe she is graduating high school this May.  But then again, I can't believe I will turn 39 this March either.  ;)

Arden and Bret sing in the teen choir. I video taped it and I'm sure you'll notice what Boone is doing.

So the next morning I had Shepard talk to Boone about how to properly wipe his nose. Shepard's Chinese language came back to him after we got Pryor and Boone. Shepard gets stuck sometimes and Pryor helps him out. Pryor seems to understand a lot of English and the two of them get along really good. That's not to say they don't do a lot of competing.


While the kids were at Sunday school I had my usual coffee with Mike, Boone and our friend, Dianne. We've been friends over 30 years. Our other long time friend, Darla died of cancer a couple of years ago. Every time I brought a child home from China, no matter how long it had been since I saw Darla she would show up right before Christmas with a Christmas stocking with the new child's name on it. When we got Stafan I kept wondering when Darla would show up with Stafan's stocking, but Christmas came and went and no sign of Darla. I just figured Darla was busy and maybe couldn't handle all the kids I was getting. : - ) Just about a month later I got a call from Dianne crying. They were as close as any sisters and had been since I even knew them. Dianee said Darla went to the hospital and found out she had cancer. Darla died within 2 days. Darla's funeral was packed with people. She was the kind of lady that made everyone feel special and just naturally lit up a room. She was also the kind of lady that if she liked you she LOVED you, but if she didn't you probably knew it. The very first time I met Darla she decided she liked me. We were friends from day one. To this day I feel like Darla is with me.



Then after church we ate out, but this is the only picture I took. I asked Mike if he thought it was weird how people stare at me taking pictures all the time. He said, "No it is weird you take pictures all the time." Whatever!


Andrew called me Nana for the first time today! He loves balls and anything round is a ball. As he was looking into a CHRISTmas bulb he saw our reflection and said "Babe. Nana." How stinking cute is that?!





He was so cute I just "had" to give him an early CHRISTmas present! Whitney told me he liked bears, but he seemed to ignore this one! I guess it is much more exciting to crawl up the stairs several times. He loves our stairs!



They are growing up.

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This was taken in China when we were adopting Cokie. She was 2 1/2, Lyric was about to turn 3 y.o. and Bret was 7 y.o.

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That would be Lael back there sleeping.





Substitute Teacher Dismissed over Alleged Bad Word.

This story came from my 5th graders so the facts may or may not be correct.  : - ) You've been reading about Pryor and Boone getting in trouble at school for saying shut up and stupid.  I think it is great that the school is staying on top of the children's language.  Obviously, they are doing a better job than I'm doing at home. Of course, school is different than home.


My kids go to a really good school that ranks in the top one percent of the state.  I guess the reason they do so good is because they stay on top of things.  However, with Pryor and Boone getting busted for saying words they aren't supposed to, I thought it was a little funny and ironic when the girls came home excitedly telling me that a sub had been banned from teaching at their school because he had said a "very bad word" to the kids. I have no idea what the "very bad word" was or even if he said it.   





More school escapades...


Mike got a text this week from school.  Sigh... Pryor has been telling kids they are stupid and to shut up.  Sound familiar?  Yeah, Boone got in trouble for saying shut up the other day too.  Where do they get this stuff? 


It has to be one on these guys.   Pryor and Boone are starting to understand some English, but they don't speak many words yet.  Pryor is speaking a little more than Boone.  Boone sounds something like this.

Me,  "How are you Boone?" 
Boone,  "You! How are you.  Crazy?"  


Me, "Stop that Boone!'
Boone, "Sooorry. You OK?"


It could be one of the older kids.   Bret is quiet 99% of the time, but when she gets mad look out.


It could be one of the cousins maybe?  




It isn't Lael or Arden, because they are too indifferent to bother to tell them to shut up.


It's not me!! I would never tell this sweet face to shut up...




would I...