"Common Ground": my little corner of the blogosphere where I talk (a lot-wink) about the things that matter most to me: My relationship with my Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ, homeschooling, adoption, homemaking, parenting, "spousing." (yeah, yeah....I know that's not a word.....I made it up-it’s my blog-I can do things like that! Ha!)

Since my life isn’t all that different from yours, hopefully we can find some COMMON GROUND & learn from each other. Please share your thoughts!

Through the Lords’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not.

They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness!
Lam. 3: 22 & 23

Click on pics to see us up close & personal! :)


Monday, September 29, 2008

Announcements......

I will be taking a blog break soon, due to DH & I going on our CRUISE!!! So, since I don't really want to announce to the world when we will be gone, I am stopping consistant blog entries after this post. I have a few posts scheduled, though, so check back every so often for cute pics!!!

I will be able to moderate comments some, & I will post when/if we get Natty's test results back from the kidney specialist.

Fall Frolic

My favorite place to hike is a place in Florissant, CO.
My favorite time of year is right now,
when the aspen have turned.

On Saturday, my sister & I took the plunge
& took the kids hiking by ourselves!

Fortunately, Dave could watch Natty,
so we only had one baby to carry!

Oh, it was fun!

There is a hike there called “Boulder Creek Trail”
that has HUGE boulders the kids love climbing around on.
Highly recommend it for anyone that has kids that like to hike!

The weather was 75 degrees,
& the aspen glistened in the breeze!!

Right as we drove out of the park,
we saw our first lighting from afternoon thunderstorms!
We literally had perfect timing!!!
Don’t you love it when that happens??






Thursday, September 25, 2008

10 years ago……today (well, at least on FRIDAY, the 26th)

I married my best friend.

People say that all the time.

You know what I mean?

But, really, we even read each other’s minds & finish each other’s sentences!




We have been through so much together……
an emergency induction-with an AMAZING gift at the end.

The loss of our second child.

2 international adoptions.

Many, many road trips.

(that in itself is an OUTSTANDING accomplishment,
if I do say so myself!)


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

But, most of all, we have just been through life together.

Sipping coffee in the morning…..while the kids are (hopefully) still snoozing.


Tag-teaming on bedtimes,
car-seat buckling,
kissing away boo-boos,
dressing kiddos……
& yes, even ER visits.

Laughing over life…..& laughing at ourselves.

Watching sports together.
(Go JAYHAWKS!!!)
Bedtime prayers.

Snuggle times.

It’s those day to day things that add up to make time together so special,
know what I mean, friends?

Thanks, Dear Hubby of mine, for 10 wonderful years, &
I can’t wait to find out what awaits us in the next 10, 20, 30 or 40 years!!!!
(Nor can I wait to go on our cruise!!!
Disney, here we come-again!!!)








Thursdays Before the Throne

COULD EVERYONE PLEASE PRAY WITH US ABOUT THIS?!?
Remember, Natty was in the ER two times last week with a very high fever.
(106 the first night & 104 the second).

Turns out he had pneumonia.

But, in all the test that were run, his URINE glucose came back elevated. (500)
They then did a finger stick to test his blood glucose which was normal.
(well with-in normal).

The next day at the DR's office, they ran the tests again (finger stick),
so they again tested his urine-still high.

The doctor had me take home a bag to collect another sample after he got healthy again,
hoping it was just his little body reacting to the high fever.

Today, the results came back at 2,000!!!
He is going in to the doc tomorrow for another test.
I am concerned, but the Lord has given me peace
& I am not worried at the moment.
Please pray that would continue as well.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Whadda Ya Think of This??

Did you know that "potty training can be SO confusing!"
Very Confused
Did you also know that a certain brand claims to "make potty training make more sense??"

I really laughed when I heard it.

People have been potty training their children for over 4,000 years.

But, this brand has finally unlocked the secret-hidden for 1,000's of years!!!!!

The problem is that potty training "confuses" kiddos!

Thank goodness, they now have solved all our potty training problems, huh???


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

News Flash!!!!

Ruth just went potty!!!

She wasn't "confused" at all, either!!!

Ha!!!! Ha!!!


Monday, September 22, 2008

Well, here we go again!

Ruth has a fever now.
Very low grade, but enough for me to drug her & send her to bed!

Tonight is a “random stream of consciousness” post.
A bit of parenting, a bit of adoption “stuff”
& finally, a bit of kitchen success!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

OK, how can we get Ruth to STOP torturing her brother.
I kid you not-at least 10-15 times a day.

The other day-oh, yeah, the first day Natty had a fever (106, remember?) we were all sitting on the couch together watching TV & waiting for Dave to come home & take over child care so I could take Natty to the ER. Ruth picks up a toy hammer & hits him on the head.

Help! I’m not sure the child will make it to his second birthday!!!

Any ideas? It is very hard to separate them due to the layout of our house.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So, Ana has suddenly become a voracious reader.
You know how it is. It just clicks & they take off!
She is reading anything she can get her hands on!!!

She loves anything to do with horses &
several people have given her “horse stories.”
Horse

As she devoured this latest one, she told me one day,
“Mom, Tiffany didn’t know she was adopted.”

(She almost always gives me no context,
so my first response was, “HUH?!?! Who IN THE WORLD is Tiffany???”)

“Well, Mom, this girl in the horse story I’m reading.
Her mommy & daddy didn’t tell her she was adopted.
Her brother told her & he told her to keep it a secret.”

(My mind is going a mile a minute-& I’m praying I get some extra wisdom!!)

I thought-“I might need to get my hands on this little book, huh?
I hope the attitudes toward adoption are something we want to foster!”

So, that night, I picked it up & started reading.

(Now, I ask you, if you’re not a mom, would you ever pick up a 2nd grader’s horse book??? I can think of a whole lot of ways I’d RATHER spend my reading time. Ha!!! Ha!!!)
Books
Turns out it’s fine.

Matter of fact, it was probably GREAT.

The heroine is very open about how she feels about her adoption,
& it gave Ana a glimpse into what our other kids may feel one day.

Ana & I sat down & discussed that Ruth & Natty & her can always talk to each other about the adoptions. I was able to tell her that there may be questions about it that Natty & Ruth have for her that she can’t answer.

& Ana said, “Like questions about their birth mama?”
Ahhhh……wise beyond her years.

“Yes, Ana. Like that. Or ones about their birth family.”

I told her that Daddy & I know some more than her,
& that some of that is information that we will share with them when & if they want it.

And she can ask questions.
We may not be able to answer them all,
but we will sure always be open to talking about it-
with her, with Ruthie & with Natty.

It will never be the elephant in the room in our home, so to speak.

Who knew that reading a simple children’s book would open up a good conversation that relates to our lives-all of our lives-right now?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

& finally, the kitchen success!

Do you know what this is:

I was SO excited when I found it yesterday, & it helped round out our Guatemalan meal of Pepian de Pollo (a chicken soup) & Frijoles Negros (refried black beans) perfectly!

I bet you know!


Sunday, September 21, 2008

Thanks, Everyone!!!

Thanks so much for praying for Natty over the past few days!

This morning he woke up with no fever!!!

He also had a bit of a bottle,
& a diaper change,
& went back to sleep.

So, I think all's right in his little world, now.

He still has diarrhea & a diaper rash,
(more importantly, a VERY low pain tolerance),
so if you wanted to add that to your prayer list,
that would be great.

Thanks, too, for your kind comments &
your concern through your comments!

(Oh, & we do still have to persue the abnormal glucose levels,
once things calm down in his little body).

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Round Two.....

The ER.......at 11:45pm Friday night.
Yes, yet again. There we sat.
Fever was 103.1 under the arm.
I was picturing adding 3 degrees to that
(like the thermometer at the hospital did the night before).

We got there, though, & fortunately, it was only 103.7 on their themometer.
The long & the short of it is, with an x-ray,
& ANOTHER CBC (read-digging around for a blood vessel that would donate blood), the doctor finally got the results.
The pnumonia hasn't improved much,
even after highdose antibiotics for 24 hours.

So, they gave him a shot of antibiotics & sent us home.
(4 1/2 hours later-but ER wait times are a discussion for another blog entry-ha!! ha!!).
He has SO had it with being *messed* with!!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
But, as I laid there on the bed holding him,
he (wonder of wonders) fell asleep on me!
Multiple times!
He has NEVER done that.

So, in the midst of all that exhaustion, mentally & physically,
the Lord gave me such a blessing it almost brought tears to my eyes.

My boy was cuddling, relaxed & asleep in my arms.
It got even better.
I fell asleep while waiting, too,
there in the dimmed light of our amazingly quiet room!!!
(quiet for an ER in the middle of the night, at least!!!)
Shear heaven on a hospital bed (in a good way-ha!! haa!).
Keep praying, friends!
His fever was 100.2 this am.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Still 102.4 this morning.

Last night, it was at least 3.5 degrees higher than my thermometer registered. We are heading to the dr. as soon as we can get in!

Lab results are abnormal, too.


UPDATE: Last night, his urine had a LOT of sugar in it. They did a blood sugar test, which came back normal, so they tell us he doesn't have diabetes, thank the Lord!!!!

At the doctor today, they tested his urine again, & the numbers are lowering, but they are FAR from normal. The doc thinks it was due to stress on his kidneys last night, that it will continue to lower over the next few days! If not, then we will run some more tests to see what could be going on. Poor baby is super afraid of anyone in scrubs now!

His fever is going down, slowly but surely, thank the Lord!

One thing is for sure, parenting is NEVER boring!!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

HOPE......

First, if you have adopted, or are adopted,
I asked a question here earlier this week about whose “story” the adoption is-
yours or your child’s.
I am looking for some more feedback on that.

Also, Natty gave us a little scare last night & here are all the details.
Please pray for the doctors to have wisdom today.

So much comes to mind when I hear the word HOPE!

First, I thought of the words to this hymn:


“My HOPE is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ Name.


Refrain
On Christ the solid Rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.”


Next, I looked it up:
Hope (from Dictionary.com):
~the feeling that what is wanted can be had
~that events will turn out for the best

Psalm 119:114
You are my hiding place and my shield;
I hope in Your word.


Psalm 119:147
I rise before the dawning of the morning,
And cry for help;
I hope in Your word.

Did you know that there are 27 uses of the word HOPE in the book of Psalms alone???
1. Psalm 16:9
2. Psalm 31:24
3. Psalm 33:17
4. Psalm 33:18
5. Psalm 33:22
6. Psalm 38:15
7. Psalm 39:7
8. Psalm 42:5
9. Psalm 42:11
10. Psalm 43:5
11. Psalm 62:10
12. Psalm 71:5
13. Psalm 71:14
14. Psalm 78:7
15. Psalm 119:43
16. Psalm 119:49
17. Psalm 119:74
18. Psalm 119:81
19. Psalm 119:114
20. Psalm 119:116
21. Psalm 119:147
22. Psalm 119:166
23. Psalm 130:5
24. Psalm 130:7
25. Psalm 131:3
26. Psalm 146:5
27. Psalm 147:11


Finally, I thought about what gives me HOPE & often it is just the thought of a new day. Yesterday’s mistakes, sorrows & trials are gone. Today is here-to be LIVED, the best of my ability, no matter what comes my way.

This is then the song the Lord brought to mind:

"Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today and bright HOPE for tomorrow,
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!


Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided;
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!"
Pike's Peak, from our hotel window-6:30am
(yes, we stayed in a hotel while the carpet was being replaced!!!!).
Finally, for more glimpses into HOPE, run over to Sarah's blog!

"106??!?!? Are you sure you don't mean 100.6???"

Yes, that’s what came out of my mouth tonight at the E. R.

Yeah, that would be the Emergency Room.

I knew he was hot.

But 106?!?!?

I HAVE to have heard wrong!

Right?

“No,” the nurse corrected me.

"Not 100.6. 106!!!"

At that point, I was scared.

I usually do fine in these types of situations.

But, there in the Triage Room,
as I held my inconsolable 13 month old,
the tears started to well up.

Thankfully, after his doses of Tylenol & Ibuprofen,
his fever came down within the hour-back to normal.

Several pokes, proddings & procedures later, we discovered that he had slight inflammation in one lung. Amazing that something so simple could produce such a violent reaction! And yesterday, he had no symptoms at all.

But, there was also snippet of news a bit harder to take.

Elevated glucose levels in his urine. Now, this doesn’t mean diabetes for sure, but it is enough of a concern that we need to see the doctor. So, tomorrow, that is on my agenda. (He would need to be seen anyway, since one blood test result didn’t come back while we were there).

All for now, from a very grateful to God mommy!
Natty says, "Please tell all Mommy's blog readers,
I am now snuggled up in my own bed at home, fast asleep!"

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Can't I PLEASE Talk About it? PLEASE???

Ok……something I have been struggling with for a while…

When you go to a baby shower, the topic always comes up.

“Well, when I went into labor with my first……..”

With MY third baby, it went so fast!”

Or, “I ended up with a emergency C-Section on my 2nd.”

“Did you have an epidural?”

BUT, why is it, that I cannot share that we adopted two of our kiddos.

It’s like, we are supposed to ignore that fact almost.

I know it’s their story.

I know I shouldn’t talk about it in front of them (especially as they get older).

But, in the adoption circles I run in,
it’s like they are almost forgetting that it’s OUR STORY too.

I can share all about the GORY details of labor & delivery.

But I can’t share that “Yes, we are THRILLED that God blessed our family through adoption!”

I want to shout it from the rooftops!

God chose us to be blessed through this method of building our family.

Here’s an example:

I ran into a friend in the grocery store I hadn’t seen since Ana was born.
We had Ruth by then, but we were still in process with Natty’s adoption.

I wanted to tell her how God had blessed us
& guided & directed us to add to our family through adoption.

But, I didn’t. I just told her that we had two girls.
(The girls were home with their daddy.)

Why? Because this cloud of doubt was hanging over my head.

All the experts had told us that it’s their story. Not ours to tell.
Shhh

But, it IS my story.
It IS Dave’s story.
& it is Ana’s story as well.
Why?
Because adding to your family is part of what makes your family’s story.

I don’t know.

If you have adopted, what do you think?
Our first day as an official family of five-
February 26, 2008
Guatemala City.






Monday, September 15, 2008

Have I Told You About These Two Lifesavers?

I use this website every week.
I download a printable menu & grocery store list,
& head out to Wal-Mart! So much easier!!!


At this one, I printed a chore chart for every week of the year.
Now, nothing gets forgotten.
This week, I even get reminded to clean out my refridgerator door!!!
How cool is that????
No more science experiments growing in my fridge!!!

Did You Notice My Sidebar???

I have a new icon that you can click on & be a "follower" of my blog. How cool is that? The only trouble is, I'm not sure how it works. There is also a picture of my one (so far!!!) follower. Joyce, if you see this post (& you should, since you are a "follower" right?Happy ), could you please post how it works on your end? Do you get an e-mail saying I have posted again?

I'm so excited! If you have this feature, let me know, & I'll "follow" your blog!





Saturday, September 13, 2008

Thank-You, Mom & Dad.......

For setting such a good example of a loving couple-
for 39 years today!
We love you guys!

(This is the only picture I could find of both of them together.
Taken 2 years ago at Turkey Hill,
when they wanted to take Ana on a hike to the river one evening.)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

"Mom, you need some help, don't you?"

Ok, so never a dull moment around here.


Natty has been pretty much feeding himself,
but toward the end of meal time,
he usually needs a bit of help to finish filling up.

But, if I don’t come running AS SOON AS he wants me to,
his volume gets louder & louder with each passing nano-second.

I guess Ruth thought she would take matters into her own hands the other day,
because this is what I found!




Oh, my word!
The little behind sticking out!

You have to click on this picture. The mouth! SO funny!!!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So last night, I went on blog post over load here & here.

Finally, for more cute pics, head over to Sarah's blog!

Finally, a Family Foto!!!!

I know, not everyone is smiling,
but everyone is looking at the camera!
(my standards are very low for what I consider a good picture! Ha! Ha!!
Oh, & I have flowers growing out of my head!!! Sheesh! I can't win!)

Thursdays Before the Throne

My country,' tis of thee,
sweet land of liberty, of Thee I sing;
land where my fathers died,
land of the pilgrims' pride,
from every mountainside let freedom ring!



My native country, Thee,
land of the noble free, Thy name I love;
I love Thy rocks and rills,
Thy woods and templed hills;
my heart with rapture thrills, like that above.




Let music swell the breeze,
and ring from all the trees sweet freedom's song;
let mortal tongues awake;
let all that breathe partake;
let rocks their silence break, the sound prolong.



Our fathers' God, to Thee,
author of liberty, to Thee we sing;
long may our land be bright
with freedom's holy light;
protect us by Thy might, great God, our King.


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Monday, September 8, 2008

Happy Birthday to.........

My blog!!!
Birthday Balloon

Boy, life has sure changed from my first few blog entries, huh?

I have felt very out of the blog loop the last few weeks,
due to all the activity around our house.

I miss the writing & I miss my blogging friends!

I thought a good way to celebrate the birthday
of my blog was to show you pics of our new carpet!

Vast expanses of “new,” of “clean,” of “soft.”

I feel like it’s a whole new house, & I guess it kinda is!




Of course, the camera didn't do a great job picking up the colors.
The dark brown color in the carpet is the same brown in the darker streaks in the wood.



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Thanks to all of you who make my blog so much more fun by leaving your comments!

Visitors to our blog are what keeps me going!


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