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.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

Camp 2019

 Last weekend was our 7th year at camp and our smallest number attending - only six of us. Tori stayed home with Moriah since Moriah was off all weekend. We had a great time as usual and while I love the activities, my favorite is just not having to cook any meals or do any dishes. I wish we had a dining hall to show up at every meal!

 The difference in camp the last two years, since it's being run by a different group, is allowing the kids to attend whatever activity they choose when it's available instead of having a rotation. Since the kids are older, it's really nice. I have few pictures of Julia because she spent hours at jewelry making while the younger three never went there at all. 

Eljah - archery

Selah was the only one who got her kite up in the time we spent trying.

Bella loves the African drumming
 Everyone loves the rock wall and high ropes course - 


 The lake is really a fun time, we did several laps around with different combinations of paddlers. 

Unplanned race down the hill between the camp counselor and JD, much to the girl's delight. 


Laser Tag
 Our traditional last day photo missing Julia, because she was back at jewelry making. 

 About an hour after arriving home, Storm had two baby girls - Cypress and Cedar. 

 She joins Lady and her triplets - Canaan, Claudia and Carmelle - yes, it is C year. We also have two more goats that are going to add to the population within the next few days.

Friday, March 22, 2019

Essentials Projects

  Elijah and Selah have completed their large Essentials project, board and paper. That's a relief! Elijah did Samurai and Selah did Olmecs. Here are just a few pictures to show their hard work, because yes, we saved the wood sword that JD and Elijah built, but Selah's sugar pyramid and the posters have already retired at the land fill!

Sunday, March 17, 2019

More Chicago and a Bit of Lancaster

 Here's a few more pictures of the guy's graduation trip to Chicago. Tori and I were supposed to go, but I have a disk issue in my back that makes sitting in the car rather painful. 15 hours each way just became rather unrealistic as the trip approached.

The trip out was uneventful, but the drive home was in a bad snowstorm and it took many extra hours. I'm thankful they arrived safely! Gabriel and Nathan were blessed with the cheap Frontier flight option - we had none of those offered between DC and Chicago unfortunately. 

This is the Willis Tower that used to be the Sears Tower; I guess it's still the tallest in the U.S. I guarantee if I had been there, I wouldn't have been standing on that deck glass! The picture alone makes me nervous.

This week we made a trip to Sight and Sound in Lancaster, PA for the Jesus play. It is absolutely amazing and I would recommend it most highly to anyone who is able to go! It was Alyssa's last trip out of the state before the baby comes. 

We stayed all night and hit the Pennsylvania Railroad Museum the next morning; it was very engaging. We really enjoyed it and spent longer there than we planned. 



Next weekend is our annual weekend at camp - quick trip #4 of 5 this spring.

Friday, March 1, 2019

Chicago Trip

 JD and Elijah hit the road yesterday and drove north of Chicago to meet Gabriel and Nathan for James' graduation from Boot Camp! We are so proud of him! Here they are waiting for the ceremony to begin. 

Here they are in the cold, right after the ceremony. The travelers are staying until Sunday, but James is staying for A school. Upon completion of that, the sky is the limit for where he may go! At least now we will be able to text and call him, and we are hoping he is able to come home for Moriah's wedding on June 1st. 

Trip to Colorado

 Tori, Julia, Alyssa and I did a quick trip to Colorado to visit our favorite little boys.

Samuel is four months old and the sweetest little guy with big, blue eyes!

This is Waffles, the puppy I bought Alayna for her birthday; she loves snuggles and likes to get in with the momma and Samuel time.

We were able to celebrate Nathan's 4th birthday, just one day late!


Our only serious outing was to the Denver Aquarium. This is the teenagers waiting in the long line!

 Gabriel was yawning in the background, but this picture isn't about him.

Nathan's favorite is petting the sting-rays - 

Tori and Samuel both have huge eyes -

Samuel really loved hanging out on Alyssa's pregnant belly - they will be cousins nice and close in age!

Security leaving Denver was horrible. This was the line after a good 30 minutes of waiting and was twice this long by the time we made it to the front. We had no buffer left of our two hours arrive before time; I'm sure there were many missed flights that day.