Archive for the ‘1’ Category

Count Down to Christmas

I have some catching up to do.  I know….. I know….  It has been over 4 months since my last post and you have probably all been holding your breath waiting for me to reappear.  HA Let’s just say things have been interesting these last few months and I haven’t known how to put it all into words.  I stuggle to just do something if I can’t do it to the degree that I want to… you know perfection is a tough mark to hit and often the goal of perfection holds me back from just doing something… well no longer….

Here is my blogging countdown to Christmas. One post a day (maybe more since I have some catching up to do) until Christmas.  It will be my way to ring in the season and get my heart focused where it should be.  Christ our Savior is Born!!!            Maybe we can count down together?

You can stop holding your breath now….. I’m back!

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The Trip West

So we left South Jordan around 9:30 am on Wednesday.  Stopped by SMCC to pick up some papers from Kelly and so I could say good-bye to my Bible study friends and then we hit the road.  Our goal was to make it to Baker City, Oregon by that night.  We had reservations at the Best Western there.  We really like that hotel and have stayed there a few times before.  The drive was uneventful…. the boys are pretty awesome in the car.  Eyob can get a little sketchy when he is tired and can’t get to sleep so the end of the day I drove into Baker City with Eyob screaming and the other two boys fuzzing at me but that was only the last hour.  I was so tired that day of driving from the intense packing and moving and negotiating children that I ate a whole bag of sunflower seeds that day.  THey are now my favorite thing for keeping me awake.

Boys in the hotel room that first night.  Their jammies say, “Handsome as my Daddy!”  Amazing… all day in the car and they were still happy.


Portland is the key town to catch on the sign.  The second day on the road was a little more difficult so I was anticipating seeing Portland on the road sign.  Our destination for the second day was Brandon’s parents house in McMinnville, Oregon about an hour south of Portland.  That day was fraught with lots of wet diapers and frustrated children, but all in all they did great and we made it to grandma and granpas safe and sound.  The boys and I stayed there from Thursday until Tuesday and Brandon left on Saturday to unload the truck and get ready to start work on Monday.  I will post some pics of our stay in oregon and then some great news about our new digs.  Keep checking back.  Thanks for praying for us on this adventure.

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Our little Cowboys

My boys are quite taken with cowboys.  SLoan has always loved horses, but since he got his cowboy hat from Big Dave and Heather and Brandon has been letting him watch John Wayne movies he has been more and more fascinated by cowboys.  SO coming to OK has been like a boys dream.  My parents friends and our new friends, the Custers, invited the boys overto their house to ride horses.  It was awesome to see them enjoying themselves so much.  After living in a place with no yard it has been wonderful to watch the boys doing outside stuff and watching the Custer boys play and work outside has made us really want that for our boys….who knows how that will play out for us but… for now here are some pictures of their cowboy adventures.

Could these two brothers be any cuter?  They were watching the cowboys practice roping steer….I guess technically it would be called heading and heeling….. Eyob wasn’t so sure about the horses we had seen earlier in the week, but this day he was totally in to them and not afraid at all.  He has been almost a completely different kid while we have been here.  Definetly a post idea for later (I say that a lot don’t I?)

On the way to the Custer’s place Sloan was talking about how he was going to ride a black horse and so when they put him on Blackie, he couldn’t have been more excited.  Sean and Eyob got to ride around with one of the Custer boys. I was amazed that Eyob got right up there.  Sean enjoyed himself but kept looking for the puppy that was running around.

The boys also got to try their hand a bull riding…. I mean calf riding….

The four wheeler was a big hit too.

Eyob was fussing and trying to get in to the arena where they were roping so the ultimate cowboy, Cody Custer, put him up in the saddle with him.  Eyob loved it!  Later that evening, Cody and his family came over to help celebrate my dad’s birthday and when he walked in Sloan, walked up to him and said, “Hey cowboy!”

On the way home, we stopped at Taco Bell and in front of us in line was an older man, the perfect picture of a cowboy,  Sloan with wide eyes said, “Mom… there’s a cowboy in here!”

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Sayre, Oklahoma- Part 1

I meant to write a post and let you all know we were headed to Oklahoma to visit my parents, but I didn’t have time.  We were trying to get packed, finish up the necessary chores to leave our house ready to “show” while we were gone, and just get out the door in one piece so I forgot to write.  

Well, we are here.  We left last Saturday, drove all day with a brief stop in Moab, a wrong turn somewhere out in the middle of nowhere that cost us some time and my bladder a little pressure, and an ending point in Gallup, NM.  I was surprised how well the boys did in the hotel with us all sleeping together, but they did awesome….they were exhausted.  We got up early on Sunday and drove straight through to Sayre, Ok…arriving around 6 or so.  I think we stopped in Santa Rosa… maybe I got the name wrong, at a park and let the boys play… we ate some bad Subway too….

Anyway, we have spent the week hanging out with Nanny and Poppa, riding horses, calves, golf carts, swatting flies, eating, playing in the pool, talking with the wonderful people of Trinity Fellowship, and really getting a chance to hear from the Father, through the voice of our new friends here.  What an awesome group of people, who show what it means to put relationships over pretty much anything else. We have been accepted as family since we showed up.  We are staying in the “Trinity House,” have been prayed over multiple times by various people, invited over for dinner, encouraged, and much more.  Talking about what we have experienced this week will require more posts, but for now I wanted to make sure that you got some pictures.


  COuple pics from trip down.  We stopped at a park in Moab, UT for a little running around time and lunch.

 THe pool.  Jake, my parents dog, loves having the boys splash at him.  He will get in the water and just bark at them, trying to get them to play with him.

 Nanny and too of her boys…. you can’t pin Eyob down sometimes.


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I admit it… I am not proud of it, but honestly I didn’t even realize I was one until recently…. I am a waster. 

I am terrible about turning off lights, I let the water run when I brush my teeth, and lots of times I leave the refrigerator door open when I am pouring the boys apple juice.  I can’t say I have been ignorant about it completely, but truthfully I am a little on the lazy side when it comes to this kind-of stuff.  I have been sacrificing frugality (is this a word?) for ease.

Anyway, about a month ago now, I watched an Oprah (by the way Oprah has lost her recording place on my DVR schedule, more on that in another post) about how much the average American wastes, from food, to electricity, to time.  She gave two families, one with high school-aged children and one with kids around my kids age (maybe slightly older) a challenge… they were not allowed to watch tv or use any of their electronic devises, including cell phones. They were not allowed to go to the store (of any kind), no bottled water, no eating out and they had to do it for a week.  They started out by showing the us, the viewers, what an average wasteful week was like for the families and then we got to watch as they experienced what turned out to be a really interesting challenge. 

As I was sitting there completely appalled by their wastefulness, I suddenly realized that I am not much better. Sure my boys don’t play five hours of video games a day and talk on their cell phones and we don’t have our TV on 24/7 in every room of the house (only one TV anyway), I often throw out food because I bought more than I needed and didn’t plan meals using the food we had.  Unlike one of the families, I don’t buy my four year-old Starbucks 4 times a week, I do, however,  buy myself a lot of coffee at a coffee shop when I could just as easily make it at home.  As I watched, I realized that my wastefulness may not be in the same areas as these families, but I am still wasteful. 

I was challenged by watching these wasteful families and decided to try and change some of the things that I do in my life, in order to be more frugal with our finances, food, time, and the amount of waste we create.  Here is a list of what I have come up with…

1. stop buying bottled water- plan ahead and bring water bottle from home for everyone

2. only buy coffee at a coffee shop once a week and make my lattes at home (they are turning out pretty good by the way)

3. turn off lights when we leave the room, shut the door to the fridge all the time, adjust the water heater temp, and set the temp throughout the house as low as we are comfortable, turn water off during teeth brushing and remind the boys to do these things as well

4. limit the boys TV time to 1/2 hour a day if that (this is harder than I thought)……  I was appalled at how much TV the kids on the challenge watched…. video games too…. I am determined that I will avoid video games for as long as possible…I am NOT judging those of you who let your kids play them.

5. inventory what I have in our pantry and fridge and plan meals based on what we have already, avoiding the grocery store as much as possible- this has actually been pretty fun and Brandon is even getting into the challenge with me…

6. plan weekly menus and grocery lists- when I shop only buy what is on list (hard!)

7. clip coupons!!! … Never thought I would be doing this….I have a post coming on this later… I am amazed that in my first few tries I have gotten a ton of free stuff as well as saved myself so much money….I have some amazing websites to share later

8.  recycle everything that I can- even those cans that I would rather just throw away because I don’t want to wash them out and that glass that I will actually have to drive to dispose off because it doesn’t go in our recycling cans (I am amazed at how much this has cut down on our waste)  I am even getting things out of the garbage that others have thrown away that should have been recycled… yeah me!

9.  limit our eating out… plan when we will do it and stick to it

10.  pay attention to what is wasteful, what I don’t need, what my family doesn’t need

So far, I have done pretty well.  Over all, I am being more conscious about what I do, especially where I spend my money.  If you have ways that you are letting go of being a waster let me know…. I know there is so much more that I could do.



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Another Adoption Update

Since I updated you last there was a little progress with my friend’s, Jenn and Warren, adoption.  After being told there were no children within their parameters, they were then told that there are actually 3 little girls but they don’t come off the registry for another 3 weeks.  Anyway, this will put them in Kaz almost 3 weeks longer than they planned and as you can imagine financially this is going to be tough.  They were supposed to meet these girls yesterday, but yesterday morning Jenn woke up with severe abdominal pain, turns out she had kidney stones.  Does this sound like an attack from satan or what.  I can’t believe how hard he is trying to stop this adoption.  Anyway, Jenn is better today and they should be meeting their daughter at about 1pm tomorrow, Kaz time, which will be 1 am our (Utah) time. So please pray again with me… that God would protect them from any more attacks from the evil one, that he would provide miraculously for them financially and that he would reveal their daughter to them and provide a joy filled meeting.  Thanks for praying with me.

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My best friend, Jenn and her husband, Warren are currently in Kazakstan in pusute of thier little girl and things not going well.  The adoption system in Kaz is so difficult to navigate and the orphanage they are working with is telling them their are no babies there for them, even though they were given the ok to come.  Needless to say, they are struggling right now. They have exhausted their funds just getting there and to leave empty handed would be the worst kind of pain.  However, they are staying strong in the Lord. 

I believe this is just another example of satan coming against adoption.  So would you join with me in prayer for them.  Pray that the army of our Papa would come down and fight off the enemy.  That the Holy Spirit would minister peace and love to Jenn and Warren’s hearts and give them boldness and wisdom.  I am claiming victory in this situation and I believe that Christ will be the victor no matter the outcome.  Please pray…. those of you in the middle of adoptions or who have walked through adoption’s often rugged road can attest to how difficult this would be. I will keep you updated as I know more.  Thanks in advance for your prayers.


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