Now that the fun is over, it's time for some serious stuff. I have some heavy posts coming up. Deep. Real. Seriousness that I have to share. There's a lot of fun and entertainment in the blog world, and in real life, but I have been pressed to go down the road on a more serious note these days. I am sure I'll go back to the fun once in awhile once I lay it all out here, and talk about these topics, but for now, I can't keep them to myself. It's time to dig deep. It's time to look in the mirror and be brutally honest. Stay tuned.
Come back here and tell us about it, leaving a comment on the original 5, 6, 7, 8 post below. Don't forget to read about her "creating for a cause" and how she is raising money with her shop to support foster children. She is a true inspiration, and I wish I had her talent! :)
If you haven't yet left your name in the "nest box" to win something fabulous from Lisa's adorable shop-I invite you to do so very soon! There are only a couple days left before Mattie, her hen, draws a name! Go to her blog here- http://www.2surrenderandserve.blogspot.com/ then check out her shop, come back and leave a comment here or in the post below letting us know what you liked best! There are lots of you that regularly comment that have not yet signed up, and we would love to have you join in...as well as anyone else who would like to take part. Have fun & be blessed!
My readers that's who...here's the special something I was talking about..I so hope you will check out my talented, generous, faith-filled friend and take part....
Hi! I'm Michelle's friend Lisa... (i'm the one on the left)
In celebration of Michelle's newly re-styled blog, I'd like to offer her blog readers a little something...
No hoops to jump through here, just a couple clucks clicks to visit my blog and shop, a quick post back to Michelle letting her know your fav item in my shop!
Then I'll make a note to include your name in the, "nest box!"
On February 28th "Mattie," my hen, will choose a name & I will snail mail that lucky someone, something "special!"
Told 'ya e-a-s-y p-e-a-s-y!
***Mattie wanted to show you the nest box!
Michelle & I share a passion for helping children in need...
Fostering, adopting, advocating and praying for all the little ones that are abused, neglected & forgotten.
I am focused on surrendering to Christ & through Him, serving "Children in need, first."
The Lord blessed me with a need to create, sooo I decided to create for a cause!
My shop is unique in that I am not making a profit for myself.
When something sells, I donate to charity first (like tithing!), buy more supplies with what is left & then make more goodies for the shop!
A portion of each sale in my 'lil shop goes to National CASA and other organizations that benefit abused/neglected children in Washington State.
Will you please pray, volunteer and/or pass on the info to your friends & family?
Nothing happens by mistake, not even you stumbling across this blog, adding it to your reading list & becoming a "blog follower" here.
Michelle is glad you're here & that you take a few precious minutes of your busy day to share in her world.
She appreciates you stopping in to read, comment & share little bits of yourself.
...and now, so do I!
20 She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
Welcome to "Gather the Lambs", my newly designed blog by Alexis, a teen who worked very hard at designing this blog for me. Thanks, Alexis!
Awhile back, as I was contemplating about what to do with my blog, I had a few options. I decided to pray about it. I wondered if I should quit blogging altogether. I wondered if I should keep blogging but change things up a bit. As I was reading scripture one day, this verse above practically jumped off the page, and I knew. This was something I not only needed to hear, but also wanted to share with others...and this new blog was born. God really does gather us in His arms and hold us close if we allow Him. What a warm and comforting thought. Something we all need to hear and allow to soak in, as we spend time in His presence. More than that, what I love about this verse is how He gently leads those that have young. I don't know about you, but I need as much leading and guidance from the Lord as I can get during this season of motherhood.
I pray that this blog will be a blessing to those that read here, and that they will find encouragement along the way. If you are a mother, I pray this blog will also bless you in your most high calling of motherhood to the little lambs that you are raising. What an awesome and most important job we have- as mother's to the precious children He has blessed us with.
I want to talk more here about foster care, and adoption, and what it's really like. I want to share our ups and downs in a more real way, as we are now closer to hearing the final decision on where our first foster baby, baby L, will live permanantly. Will it be us? Her mom? Her relatives?
I also want to use this blog to highlight ministries, and advocate for orphans...as you will see real faces here, real babies and kids that are waiting for that special mommy and daddy just for them.
I'm so glad I am going to continue to blog, and use this format to reach out, advocate, encourage, expand awareness of ministries, and to inspire. At this time, that is my goal, and my greatest desire is that it is pleasing to God and glorifies Him.
Come back soon for my "special announcement"! You will be blessed!
The new blog will premiere any day, keep checking back! Hoping to debut by monday (or earlier)! I have something very fun to announce, as well as lots of updates, and new things to share! See ya soon!!!
The new blog design should be premiering sometime this week! I am getting rid of so many things at home, decluttering, cleaning out, and downsizing. It is nice to be doing the same with my blog, which will focus on the most important things in life, as all the rest of the clutter disappears. It will be time for a foster babies update, a peek into our new addition-as we begin painting, and putting flooring in soon, and more about living simply, and more intentional for Christ. I am SO looking forward to it. Stay tuned...I have also partnered with a talented friend who has something very special to share! Come back soon, and be blessed!
A day late, but with the week like I've had, this is actually pretty good!
This year, our annual Homeschool Night of the Arts landed on this night, so we didn't celebrate. We still might do something special this weekend sometime. In China, it's not just one day of celebrating anyway, it is a long holiday where people take time off work, and spend time with family, and carry out many of the Chinese New Year, or spring festival traditions. I plan to encorporate this into our lives more and more every year.
I am behind on organizing events for the China adoptive families group I started 3 years ago when Lilyann came home. There are 3 new little ones that have come home from China just this year, so I am excited to see our little group growing. I will be planning something in the next few months.
I love the fact that having a chinese daughter adds another holiday to our lives to celebrate. It is such a festive holiday to celebrate too...healthy food, bright colors, lanterns, beautiful flowers and the love of family. Who wouldn't want to celebrate that?
I used to talk about simplifying my life on this blog a lot. Then homeschooling became homeschooling, plus all the extra homeschooling activities we do outside the home, and a few other activities they are involved in as well. Then we took in two foster babies. Life got crazy. Busy. Hectic.
This week is a good example. On top of our weekly Awana, basketball practice, and homeschool gymnastics, we have out of town guests coming to stay the night, and our annual night of the arts for local homeschoolers, which both girls are participating in. Somewhere between daily homeschooling, and homekeeping duties, I need to fit in grocery shopping, working out, and attend an important court hearing on one of the foster babies. Oh, and don't forget, this thursday is also Chinese New Year which we have been working on finding ways to celebrate every year. It's funny how so many people think that homeschoolers are more isolated and less involved with people and social activities. We actually do more as a homeschooling family with groups, friends, co-ops and more. There is so much to do, that I have to be really careful, or we would be so much more overscheduled than we already are!
Dh and I came up with a plan. Although living simply is a huge desire of mine, I know that in a family of 6 we all of individual needs. We needed to find ways that we can both rest and rejuvenate, relax and simplify. We needed to do this while also meeting the needs of our children. I will be sharing some of the things we are going to implement in the upcoming posts. I cannot promise that it will work, but I have my fingers crossed.
We are a christian adoptive family! God has pieced together our family in a way that is more beautiful than anything I could have imagined! We have adopted internationally, as well as through the US foster care system, but most importantly we have all been adopted by God! Ephesians 1:5 says "God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ".
We live on a small hobby farm, and homeschool our six children. Life is full!
My first miracle born in 2001. After giving birth to her, I realized that being a mother was the best job out there, and children are a miracle and precious gift from God. She is a true country girl at heart. Horses are her passion. She is an amazing big sister to her 5 little siblings!
Adopted from China in 2007.
Her sweet spirit fills our home with beauty and love. She is our little dancer, and introduced me to the world of recitals, dance practices, tutu's and ballet! Most of all, her love for Jesus shines bright, and even at her young age, she has a passion for orphan care and missions. These are subjects she talks and prays about on a daily basis! Can't wait to see where the Lord takes this girl!
Adopted from U.S. foster care, July 2013.
God's surprises never cease to amaze me. He is Laney's full sibling who came to live with us in Nov. 2011. Our son since the day he arrived. This is the sweetest boy you will ever meet.
Adopted from U.S. foster care November 2011.
Words cannot describe the joy this precious pumpkin brings to our lives! Another sweet miracle fromt the Lord. She was our first foster baby, arriving at the age of 7 weeks. We were blessed to adopt her in November of 2011. She refers to herself as a princess, and is also a lover of kittens, books, and dancing. I guess many more dance practices and recitals are in our future, lol!
Adopted from U.S. foster care, July 2013.
She was our second foster child who came home from the hospital at one week old. She livens up our days with her endless energy and strong will! It has been such a joy to see her and Austin have the chance to be together as brother and sister, and they definately have a bond that makes my heart smile!
Adopted from U.S. foster care July 2013. What a surprise it was to see that the little boy I pictured in my mind, who only the Lord would know, was actually in need of a forever family! Another miraculous gift from the Lord. He arrived at 4 mos. of age in Oct. 2011. Cute as can be with a contagious laugh and smile.