Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Date Night

Last Friday night Riley and I finally had our first date night since being in Ethiopia together, 3 months ago! Our friends, Isaac & Kerry watched the kiddos and then we swapped and watched theirs on Sat night...perfect! We went out for dinner at The Hudson House in Cold Springs. It was a perfect evening to enjoy seafood outside on the river. We both left our meal ready to schedule our next date night


Monday, August 29, 2011

I'm Famous!

I'm famous! Ok, not really. Click on the link for my debut on Meghan's blog :)
She's so on top of it because my two pieces are sitting untouched in the basement.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hurricane Irene

It rained all last night and we've already gained 6" of water. The rain hasn't let up yet and we're expected to get another 4" or water. The wind isn't very strong for us right now, but all the roads are closed, church canceled, etc. Here's a picture of the creek out our front door...looks like we could go white water rafting!
Our street is empty of cars in case any of these old trees fall


Friday, August 26, 2011

Items For Orphanages

Still no embassy date yet, and we plan on writing to our Senator this weekend as we feel our case is at a standstill. Our agency is supportive of this as well. In the meantime, please continue praying for Sol, that God would keep him healthy & safe. He's legally ours, and it's a very weird feeling to know that we have a child that we're not able to protect, watch over, or bring home. Several people are asking how they can help. Pray!!! We're trusting in God's timing and in the meantime, collecting items to give to the orphanages when we finally go to pick up Sol.
If any of you would like to donate, we're planning on taking suitcases full of diapers, formula and the requested items of
• Lice shampoo
• Clotrimzole cream
• Diaper rash cream
• Multivitamin drops for infants


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Girls' Bedroom Tour

The girls room was somewhat easy to decorate because I already had the bedding that I loved. However, the shape of the room is odd...very long and narrow. Meghan helped me pick out a rug from The Carpet Mill, curtains & the swing from Ikea and from there I was inspired on my own. I re-painted Ellie's white dresser and stuck that in the closet. I moved Saedi's dresser into the boys' room & replaced hers with the cubby unit from Target. The cubby is great because she can maneuver the baskets easier and clothes stay more organized. Saedi picked the pink baskets, which happily go with the pink paint that the girls chose.

The map on the wall is my favorite part of the decor. I found the old map at Paradise Point Marketplace on the way home from the Barren River Lake State Park in Kentucky when we vacationed with The Moons. Nat and I were hot, swollen and a month away from birthing our boys. I bought this map and she bought a similar one as well, so there's a it of sentiment that goes along with it. And, it just so happens that we're working on memorizing the States and Capitals with the girls so it's PERFECT!

Fun Reading Swing


Monday, August 22, 2011

Central Park

Sunday was the kids first jaunt into the city! We spent most of the morning playing in Central Park, and Uncle Kyle linked up with us too. We walked around Times Square, ate ice cream & then hit up Rockland Bakery on our way home. Fun Sunday!


Sunday, August 21, 2011


Friday was Ellie's first day of Kindergarten! When I asked her what she was most excited about, she said, "Wearing my new clothes & my necklace from Mimi." She is her mother's daughter!
Riley got dressed up and took the girls out for coffee & donuts the morning of their first day. Ellie was up, dressed, teeth & hair brushed, & accessorized by 630 am waiting at the front door for Daddy to return from his run. She was jumping off the walls excited for her first day! Saedi, our sleep-lover, had to be woken up...just like most mornings.
Ellie's necklace that Mimi made for her first day
The girls standing outside the Post Chapel, where our co-op meets every 2nd & 4th Friday. Yes, we decided to home school again this year & we're all excited about it!

Our story...Originally, we had registered Ellie for Kindergarten and like in past years, I was not content with the decision. We prayed & talked & the night we decided we wanted to home school God was instrumental in the timing of it all. We were playing at the school playground and Ellie's older friend, Taylor, was talking about being home schooled for 2nd grade & Ellie asked if Kindergarteners could be home schooled was a perfect set-up for us to explain to her that indeed, she would be home schooled.
There is a fantastic homeschooling group at West Point & a new Christian homeschooling co-op that formed this year. We meet 2 Fridays a month & while Saedi is in the preschool class, Ellie gets to do Science & Drama with the Kindergarteners & first graders. I'm helping out in the nursery so I can stay with Isaac & Solomon once he arrives. At home, we're using a mix of programs:
Sonlight for Science
Sigapore for Math (when she completes her current book we'll try Horizon Math)
Explode the Code for Phonics
Classical Conversations for Geography & History
Rosetta Stone for Spanish
Ambleside Online suggestions for nature study & American Girl books for literature
and a few other odds & ends books about manners, thinking skills, etc
Saedi's pre-school class. She & Julianne are the only girlies.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Master Bedroom Tour

I love our bedroom! It's a nice sized-room with 3 bright windows. In decorating, I knew I wanted to use the color slate. I started with the bed as we were in need of new bedding. For the longest time I had my heart set on this bedding from West Elm (in slate), but it never went on sale! And it's really tough for me to buy things that aren't on sale. Then, after talking with Riley we decided we'd be better off with a quilt as were were always hot using a duvet. Anyway, when I saw this quilt I loved it immediately and snatched it up before it sold out. I thought it would work perfectly with slate walls! After I purchased the bedding, Meghan introduced me to the Carpet Mill Outlet where we found this cute light grey shag rug. Next, I painted my walls Paramount by Behr from The Home Depot. I loved it! Curtains are from Ikea. Piece by piece, I found the small nightstand and painted it white. And the best deal of all was our fantastic dresser we got for FREE off Craigslist. All we had to do was get rid of a couch for someone and in return they gave us this dresser. After a little wood putty this Pier 1 beauty looks great! Meghan helped me choose an accent color (berry/magenta). I found the adorable pillow, candle, & lamp with shade on clearance at Target. We also added the white ceiling fan (less then $30 from Home Depot). Lastly, I wasn't sure what to put on the dresser and my budget was gone so I used a mirror & 2 frames that I had and got crafty. I taped berry-colored yarn to tissue paper and that worked great as a picture inside the frame! And I had a magenta/grey scarf in my closet that adds a nice pop of color. The walls are still bare, but at least it feels comfortable & classy, which I guess is my style :)
My free dresser, free plant, & homemade artwork.

$15 Goodwill stand that I sanded & painted white.
Magenta accents from Target
Fantastic view & sound of creek out our front bedroom windows!


Thursday, August 18, 2011

Isaac is 1

The girls' neighborhood friends, Bethany & Blanca.

"Isaac" means laughter and it's a fitting name for this boy! Looking back, I was definitely in a funk after I miscarried, but 6 weeks later we found out we were pregnant & God used Isaac to get me out of that sad time. Isaac was my easiest & quickest labor & already at one his sense of humor is evident. Just the other day I was nursing him and he was passing gas on me, so I laughed and said, "toot toots!" He looked up and started laughing and saying, "toot toot" every 15 seconds while laughing. He loves to cuddle and likes all types of music. He's very verbal and mimics words, sounds, tones, etc. Although he's taken a couple of steps his 23# is not walking as he still prefers to crawl everywhere. Jack is his buddy & Isaac feeds him every chance he gets. Isaac loves to eat...everything except eggs! He's joyful and still sucks his "gang" fingers.

We spent Isaac's birthday spoiling him with a giant balloon, lollipop for breakfast, feeding fish at the hospital pond, & playtime at a small playground with Paddy Morrow. We ate cupcakes & ice cream sandwiches & had a casual get-together with friends at Lake Popoloken, where he swam, played in sand, and Riley gave the kids boat rides in fast Eddy (of course, I forgot to take my camera).

Thursday, August 11, 2011


Acts like this leave me speechless.

Giving is not 2nd nature to me. I think. I plan. I give because I know I should but not because I like it. I desire to become more generous, more selfless. I know giving is a great quality and people are drawn to givers. I married a giver and I become friends with givers. I see the joys of giving and I'm growing in this area.

So when people like our friends, Jen & Trey, who give selflessly desiring nothing in return, gave us an amazing stroller I think they should be recognized. From the depths of my heart, thank you for your generous gift of this amazing stroller for our boys! It has already been a blessing & Sol's not even here yet. I'm extremely grateful for friends like you & I keep learning from you!

Thank you!


Princess Tea Party


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Heart

Proverbs 4:23 says, "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life."

Today, Riley and I celebrate our 9th anniversary! I feel so blessed to be as crazy about Riley as 9 years ago. I would say our life feels harder, but much more fulfilling at the same time. He instills a confidence in me that no one else has had the power to do. I'm grateful for my best friend, soul-mate, and Love.

As far as our adoption goes, we received an update that as of this morning... there is one man refusing to give further info unless he's contacted directly by the Embassy through MOWCY

So frustrating that this Planning Expert's heart is hardened! Everything within us wants to be angry that one man is stopping Solomon from coming home. But, we know the greater truth. God is over all man. God softened the heart of Pharaoh and we will pray for this man's heart as well. God softened my heart 24 years ago when I realized I needed a relationship with God. Pray with us for this Ethiopian man that his heart would soften and he would give the needed information. Pray for the country director that is working on Solomon's behalf- that God would give him grace & patience as he is trying to work with the planning expert


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Nat & Kids

Isaac thieving Jeremiah's food
Dance Party Fun
Saedi, Meadow, Brooke & Ellie
6 Bugs in a Tub with Isaac begging for freedom!

Natalie came to visit with the kids a few weekends ago and it was DELIGHTFUL to see them again! As soon as Brooke & Meadow stepped out of the car they were bombarded by screams and hugs from Ellie and Saedi. It was so sweet to see that time did nothing to hinder their friendship. Nat and I headed to NYC Saturday and Riley was a trooper and watched all 6 kids! All the below snapshots are of his cheat night with the kids. Nat and I had a blast in the city. Unfortunately, I'm not able to get those pics off of our other camera yet. But, we took the train from Garrison into Grand Central. Kyle met us there and we walked with him around Times Square a bit. He hailed us a cab (we were laughing hysterically at his expertise doing this) and sent us to the High Line. We sampled some fine food- kimchi tacos, chinese dumpkings, natural lemonade/teas and then walked the High Rise to Union Square where sampled cupcakes and did a little shopping. We took a late train home and got in around 1am...pooped but happy. It was fantastic to have a girls night with Nat, and I need more visitors so I can have a excuse to do that again!!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Applaud God

In my inbox today I received 2 things:
1. This beautiful picture of Solomon standing and looking so happy and well-cared for.
2. A message from our friends we met in Ethiopia (also Americans adopting) who were on the same time line as us. Their paperwork cleared on Tuesday & they received their travel date of August 16th. While we're happy for them, it's so excruciating hard to not feel left behind right now. While I look at Sol's picture and cry God calls me to Psalm 100
Psalm 100
On your feet now-applaud God!
Bring a gift of laughter,
sing yourselves into his presence.

Know this: God is God, and God, God.
He made us; we didn't make him.
We're his people, his well-tended sheep.

Enter with the password: "Thank You!"
Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
Thank him. Worship him.

For God is sheer beauty,
all generous in love,
loyal always and ever.