Wednesday, May 4, 2011

reminder: Give Away!

Just wanted to remind you all that tomorrow is the last day to enter my give away!  I am drawing a name and the winner gets to choose a set of Sarah's coasters!


I really want to help her get the word out about her adoption fundraiser.  Not many people have entered... YET!  So your chances of winning are GREAT people!  To enter just post a link to her blog on your own blog or facebook page.  Then leave me a comment and tell me which set of coasters you like best. 

Friday, April 29, 2011

GIVE AWAY!! GIVE AWAY!!

I am really excited to be hosting a little blog give away.  I have never done this, but hope it helps my friend Sarah get the word out on her adoption fundraiser.

Sarah is currently in the process of adopting a little boy from Ethiopia.  You can read about their family at Journey to Noah's Brother

So!  What am I giving away??

A set of these awesome coasters!


What do you need to do to enter this give away?? (pick 2)

1.  Post about Sarah's fundraiser on your blog.  Include a link to http://ethiopiaminusone.blogspot.com/
2.  Post about it on facebook and include her link.
3.  Add Sarah's blog button to your blog and stay in touch with her.
4.  Tell me which coaster design you like best.

Leave a comment and let me know how you entered to win!

What do you win??

You will win a set of 4 coasters...you pick your favorite design.

Giveaway will end on Thursday and I will draw a winner on Friday, May 6.

Sarah is selling these coasters for $15 (set of 4)  Plus $5 to have them shipped.

Thanks for participating in the give away and helping to support another adoptive family!


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Invite Someone to Church!!

They showed this at Highview over the weekend.  I love it!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Exciting News!!

The last few weeks we have been having lots of fun.  I definitely have things that I want to blog about.  However, I have been super busy getting ready to start MY NEW JOB!  Yes, you read that right...momma got a J.O.B!

A few weeks ago, Susan called from Arise for Children and offered me a position!  To say that I was excited is an understatement.  Although I wasn't planning on going back to teaching for another year, there was no way I could pass this up!  I have been praying for an opportunity like this for a while.  WOW!  I can't believe I actually get to go to work and do something that I am passionate about. 

So, needless to say I have been crazy busy finding a preschool for the kiddos.  I FINALLY found one that I trust with Avery's allergies.  And, boy, have I been pumping up preschool!  Gracie has been great about talking it up too.  ;)  To my surprise, Avery actually has been excited about it.  She was really happy this morning and couldn't wait to get there.  BUT, once we got there that all changed!  HA!  Dawit cracked me up.  He walked in and I got his things situated.  I kissed him and told him goodbye and he smiled and said, "Bye!"  to all his teachers.  He was blowing them kisses and everything.  He thought WE were leaving...not just me.  :)  He did fuss...for all of 30 seconds and then he was off and playing.  Avery had a tough few minutes and really didn't want me to leave her.  But, NO tears!  So that was good.  I was the only one who cried!  Both kiddos were very happy to see me this afternoon.  Hopefully tomorrow morning will go smoothly.
Here are my big kids this morning before their first day of preschool!



 Gracie was doing something to make them crack up...I couldn't get a decent picture because they were laughing so hard!



My first day went great. I feel like I have to learn a lot. The process and requirements have changed a lot since we went through it. I am eager to learn and really get started though.

 I am so excited and thankful to be working with all our families and to be working for such a great agency!!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Week 2 Total

YEAH!  James and I counted all the changed that is filling our bowl.  I am so excited that half way through our collection month, we have a total of $68.11!!  WHOO WHOO!
Our goal was to collect one hundred dollars...so we are getting close! 

Thanks to everyone who has stopped by and thrown some change in....brought us bags of piggy bank change from home...and prayed for our friends in Ethiopia and the work of Eyes That See.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Month of Change-Week 1 Total


We have been collecting change in a big fish bowl on our kitchen table for a total of one week now.  The girls ask for our change everyday.  If anyone comes over to visit, they ask for their change too!  Well, this morning the girls and I counted all the change.  Are you ready for the grand total for our first week?? 
$42.97
 I am so excited that we collected this amount in ONE week!  I can't wait to see how much we have collected by the end of April!

Our friends at Eyes That See have been posting some GREAT stories about students and women that benefit from their programs.  Their son Ezra wrote an amazing post, from his perspective, about what life looks like for too many children in Ethiopia.  I really encourage you to read it.


Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Who Let The Dogs Out?!

Well, after I recently posted about Avery's lullaby request, many of you made a request of your own.  :)  No, this is not a video of me singing Who Let the Dogs Out. 

While the girls were dancing tonight, I took video of them singing and dancing.  Enjoy the show....
video

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

NeNe's Birthday Celebration

Last week we celebrated my moms birthday!  (march is another busy birthday month for us.)  Most of our crew headed to Lindsay and Tim's house for our take on Qdoba.  After we all had full bellies we sang Happy birthday and enjoyed some chocolate cake.  Yummy...my favorite.

Mom loves to work the puzzles in the paper, which is where I got the idea for the cake.

Then, of course we tried to get a picture of NeNe with all the grand kids.  It gets harder and harder each time we try. 

By the time we tried to take a picture with Nanny and the kids...they were past the point of no return.  It was chaos!

As I was scanning through the many out takes, I came across this one.  It shows the new face Dawit has.  Oh, he makes me laugh when he does it!

Month of Change



We are so excited to partner with Eyes That See for a "Month Of Change".  Throughout the month of April we will be collecting change for different projects in Ethiopia.  The girls and I made our collection jar last week.  While we were making it, I talked to to the girls about what the money will be used for.  It was great to hear Gracie tell our neighbor that we are collecting money for moms in Ethiopia to attend school.  And then to hear Avery pray for our friends in Ethiopia is sweet music to my ears. 

Here is a note from Eyes That See that describes why we are doing this and the impact it will have...

This month you are joining people around the United States too see the lives of people in Ethiopia.  The coins dropped here will benefit women within the Keziah Project and the students within our after school program.

For the past few months we have been working with a group of ten women.  They have received meals, counseling, support, and community.  At the same time, they have trained to become hairdressers.  Through this project, many of the women have found a hope in Christ that they have never known before.  As this month begins, these women are starting careers as brand new women.

We also work with 20 students who currently attend school.  These students have no parents, yet have not used that as an excuse to give up on what God has for them.  Each of these students come to our compound after school for a great meal, some free time playing soccer, and tutoring.  They return on Saturdays with friends to learn to study the Bible.  The joy on their faces shows that they are kids again.  Few things are more satisfying.  

I am really excited to be a part of this. I pray daily for the people of Ethiopia and specifically for the families that this change will impact. I also pray that my kids would have a huge heart for others.


The girls have emptied their piggy banks and our coin jar.  I joked with Matt, from Eyes That See, said told him soon they would be searching the couch cushions!  WELL GUESS WHAT?  Today they brought some more change to the table and I asked where they found it.  "Under the couch cushions!!"

So, if you come around my kitchen table....bring change!  And don't be surprised if Gracie corners you, like she did my sister this morning, and asks you to empty your change purse!  Remember it is going to a good cause!  Head on over to Eyes That See and read about all the incredible work they are doing in Ethiopia.  I am sure it is not too late to start a collection jar of your own!  

Monday, April 4, 2011

lullaby

It is part of Avery's bedtime routine that I sing her a lullaby.  I always ask which one she wants me to sing...and after thinking about it, she ALWAYS chooses "mary had a little lamb."  (always!)

Tonight I asked her which lullaby she would like me to sing.  She said, "The one about the dogs." 

I was confused. 

"Which one about the dogs?"  I asked.

"You know, who let the dogs out? woo woo woo."  and she put her little hands up like claws when she said it.

TOO FUNNY! 
Wondering why in the world my 3 year old is requesting that song?  We have Just Dance Kids on the Wii and she loves that one.  :)

On another note...anyone have any suggestions as to why blogger won't let me upload any pictures?  It says "server rejected" 

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Books of the Bible-Gracie's Rendition


video

I just showed Gracie and James the video that Avery did earlier of her singing the books of the bible.  Gracie immediately said, "Video me singing it and put it on the blog!"  Gracie does put a little flare into it and plays her ukulele while she sings.  She is definitely our little performer!



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Books of the Bible: Avery Style

video
Gracie has been working hard to memorize the books of the bible for AWANA.  We listen to her sparks cd with the song NONSTOP!  So, needless to say, we have all learned the books of the bible!  Avery is so stinkin cute doing it, I had to video her and share with you all.  If you listen closely, you will hear that she makes up some of the names!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Swimming Lessons

On Saturday the girls had their first swimming lesson.  Since both girls are beginner swimmers, they are in the same class.  (thankfully, for this momma!)  I got to go in the pool area, watch, and take pictures....just this first week though.  All went well, except when Avery drank about half of the pool!





 Gracie would NOT let go of her teacher!  No kidding..she was holding on for dear life!
Overall, I think they did good for their first lesson.  They are already looking forward to next Saturday!

In case you are wondering where the pictures are of Dawit's swimming lessons....he missed his class.  Stomach bug.
Gross.
Glad it was only a 24 hour bug.
That's all I am going to say about that.

BUT, we are looking forward to Friday when I get to take him.  I know he is going to LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!

True Woman Retreat

Last weekend I had the opportunity to spend some time with my Father and some girlfriends at Highview's women's retreat.  We headed up to a lodge in Indiana and had a wonderful time!  No diaper changes, runny noses, or a million questions!!  I actually got to eat dinner and have some good, adult conversation.  Then we had great sessions on prayer and biblical womanhood.  Some of my favorite "take aways" from this weekend....

*  Titus 2:4-5 
 "Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God."
These are seven virtues of a godly woman....and I know I can't accomplish them on my own!

*  Matthew 7:24
"Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock."
My prayer is that I would actually DO more of God's word, not just read it.

Aside from great teaching, I had great company.  Here are some pictures of the girls.  Do you believe we stayed up until 3:00 AM talking??? 
My roomies (minus one)

 I said, "Act like you are having fun!"
 about 2:00 am
 My tired roomies after a late night.


Sunday, March 20, 2011

What's up with the kids???

I am not sure why I haven't taken the time to blog lately.  Actually, I do know why...we have been busy!  But, busy doing fun things that I want to share! So, here is a quick catch up.  (if I don't catch everyone up, my Umey is going to fuss at me more and I don't want that!)

Gracie is doing great.  If you know her, you know she has her "own style" that is "very fashionable."  Here is the outfit she put together the other day.  My runway description:  Gracie is wearing her suede, tan boots paired with her black skinny jeans rolled up to her knees.  Her teal and green tunic top is layered with her navy blue school sweater.

Yep.  I think she gets her "fashionable" style from her momma!

My next funny Gracie story is over the top!  This past weekend she went to her friend Noah's birthday party.  She loves Noah.  We met him and his mom (Sarah) at an airport homecoming and the kids hit it off right from the start!  Anyway, she was sooo excited about the party.  She made Noah's birthday card.  She kept asking James how to spell certain words.  Here is the final product.  Sarah said it was pretty much a marriage proposal.  HA!


Here is the good part...

In case you can't read it, it says:
"You are loveing
You are handsome
You are cuet
I like you
You are like a flower"

I am laughing just typing that little Hallmark card she wrote! 
Here they are at the birthday party!



Dawit is doing good as well.  However, he has definitely reached the TERRIBLE TWOS!  That boy gets into EVERYTHING!  and when I correct him (which, is really quite often) this is the new look he gives me....
 He wrinkles his forehead and tilts his head down.  (I wonder if I ever look down at him over my glasses like that??)
And my Avery is as sweet as ever!  She tells me everyday, "Momma, I love you more than anything."  See, I told you she was sweet!  Last week she got to play with her friends and celebrate a birthday too.
One more thing about Av....the girl never lays down in the afternoon for a nap.  She won't sit still that long.  BUT, she does fall asleep almost every day while we drive to get Gracie from school.  The bad thing about this is that we just aren't in the car that long.  Thankfully she sleeps hard enough that I can bring her inside and lay her on the couch without her waking up.  Well, one day last week, I did just that and she was sleeping on the couch.  I looked over and saw this...

She had fallen off the couch and was STANDING there still ASLEEP!  The funniest part of the story is that her knees kept buckling and she would start to fall and then shoot back up to standing.  I tried to catch that on video, but of course, couldn't get it on tape.  Take my word for it, it was funny.


We also got to celebrate Tagan's 2nd birthday.  He is from Ethiopia and shares a birthday with Dawit.  Neat, huh?  The kids had so much fun at the gym.


 Dawit LOVED playing in the ball pit.  He would have stayed there all day if we let him.
 Where's Avery???


All three kiddos start swimming lessons this week.  That should be FUN!  I will post about that over the weekend.  I also have some other things to share.  I promise I will do it soon. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAWIT!!

Today our little man turns TWO! 

He started his day at the doctors office for his check up...which was no fun.  It took the doc a while to come in and Dawit kept saying, "All done....Bye"  His actual checkup was great.  His ear infections are gone and his tubes seem to be working now.  He weighed in at 26.4 pounds (20th percentile).  He is also 31 1/2 inches tall, which falls into the less than 5th percentile.  Yep, he's short.  Unfortunately he had to have some blood drawn and get a shot.  Boy, did that make him MAD!!  He screamed and cried.  When his favorite nurse tried to let him pick a sucker, he swatted the bucket away.  While he continued to scream I got a sucker and stuck it in his mouth.  Immediately he stopped screaming.  It was hilarious how quickly he stopped and was giving the nurse high fives!
Here he is in the car enjoying his sweet treat.  Even though he is smiling, you can still see his big tears under his eyes.

And here is what happened when it was all gone....


We have done so much celebrating over the last week that we are keeping today low key.  Here are some pictures from our get together with MawMaw and Amber.


We got him a Melissa & Doug block puzzle.  If you put the front part of the animal together with the rear part, it makes the animal sound.  :)


This is hilarious.  I included all the pictures as we were bringing his cupcake to him.  He was so stinkin excited he could barley contain himself.  It was just so cute.  In the last week, he has learned a new word: cupcake!


Attempting to blow out his candles...
He knows he needs to pray before he eats!  :)
Avery enjoyed all the cake and (milk free) ice cream!  She keeps asking when her birthday is.

We have a few more cupcakes to finish off tonight.  I am going to try to video how excited he gets so I can show you.  Too cute!

Happy Birthday Dawit! 
 We love you!