In the beginning, JD adamantly only wanted two children. I thought that four would be perfect. Once we caught God's vision of putting orphans into families, our plan was multiplied by God. We are currently blessed with 12 children; five biological, six adopted and one more waiting in Ethiopia. Our first adoption was from the U.S., the next three were from Liberia, West Africa, and our last two were from Ethiopia. We are supporting our 12th child in Ethiopia after her adoption could not pass court.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Picture Day and Cleared Land

Today was the first round of picture days at school; back in my day we only had one picture day per year, but now there are fall and spring picture days. I generally don't buy the pictures, but the sudden switch to cooler weather prompted me to drag out the 16 Rubber maids that were required for this year's clothes switch. The new sweaters (packed from last year's clearance sales) prompted me to stand the girls out front for my own picture. So now, picture day has been officially noted this year. Tori and Bella both also have the same sweater that Julia and Selah are wearing, but I'm guessing Tori will only wear it for required pictures and maybe when none of her sisters are wearing it.

Elijah and Bella wanted to join the photo shoot. 
Elijah has a special relationship with the bus driver. She asks him about once a week if he is going to come to school with her and he tells her no way, then they wave to each other as the bus passes each way.

I wanted to take a few pictures of the cleared land but first Bella had to put her sweater on for the trip. I guess she felt cheated in the earlier pictures. Elijah has several new hoodies for the year, but he prefers freezing to wearing a jacket.

Here is the largest cleared area. It will be prettier cleaned but we are enjoying just being able to see the topography. I have lived here eight years and had no idea that these hills existed. I kind of assumed it was all as flat as the area around our house.

The kids enjoy any chance to run around in here.

After a walk through the woods, I had to face the reality of my day - clothes, clothes and more clothes. I successfully have about 13 of the bins unpacked, put away and repacked with summer clothes. I should be able to finish in half a day tomorrow. I have gotten much more efficient at it, because it used to take me twice as many days with half as many kids. (did you follow that?)
the toughest room - Tori and Julia's
 The dining room is covered in piles labeled where they need to be repacked or who they are being given to. I already have a large pile of boys clothes to pack for a specific ministy in Ethiopia.


  1. Your good, and fast with the clothes swap.
    We did it while DH was out of town, took 3 days for 6 kids. But I make them try on everything. I match up outfits and hang them in sets of 3 (3 boys or 3 girls)...so each kid coordinates with the others.
    We can't completely swap here, though, so the warmer stuff has to be accessible year round.
    I'm with Elijah--Since daytime temps rarely get below 40 here...why bother with coats. I can't stand having to adjust carseat straps each outing. We usually just warm the van up, dash out, and dash into Target, or wherever.....as everyone looks at us like I'm a bad mom for not having coats. Like we don't get enough stares....

  2. You are much more thorough. I can barely make them match themselves, let alone each other. My youngest three have way too many clothes this year; mostly hand-me-downs but I'm regretting even the few I did buy.