Wednesday, January 27, 2010

JJ is 1!

Wow - we are just crazy about him! A year ago we were checking into the hospital at midnight and he literally popped out when they were trying to help me get on the bed a little after 1 am (not without due pain beforehand ;)). Javier then fell asleep not even 20 minutes later. Good thing I was "experienced", had a nap that day and had an awesome nurse to help. Javi is beyond proud and in love with this boy. He is 25 lbs, walks fast and climbs onto chairs and up steps already. Right now he LOVES Jeremiah and laughs at everything he does. Happy birthday Jameson!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

We like 'em big, we like 'em chunky

Look at the pink grapefruit from our trees! They are gigantic! My kids are addicted to them and always ask Grandpa for some from his trees, so you can imagine their delight when they could finally pick some from our trees.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Chick love

A couple of weeks ago we bought 6 chicks at the feed store. Each big kid has 1 and all the 3 boys have to share the other one. Jacklyn and Jo Jo are obsessed with their chicks and they put their hoodies on backwards so the hood can be a pouch for their chicks to ride around in. You can see they are getting so big already. Hopefully in about 4 months we will be eating more eggs!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

I am a MAMA for the 9th time!

** This ministry is kind of on hold - as soon as I find out more info, I will pass it on. So many of you were interested in this - thank you! You can see pictures of the boys, sponsor and communicate with one of the boys through Children's Hope Chest **

I am a proud mama for the 9th time and my husband doesn't even know it yet. In fact, he had nothing to do with it . . . . . . . .

We have just been matched to be the "parents" of a 17 year old son in Ethiopia named Yednekachaw! He live at Kolfe Orphanage. I should explain.

Let's back up to Nov. 2008 - remember how we collected tons of donations for an older boys' orphanage? Well, when we went to pick up our boys we went to visit that orphanage called Kolfe and we met several amazing young men.

Well since then we have met and followed the story of one family who has made an incredible impact in the life of one of these boys through long distance love and care. Please, please watch her short video testimony here

Now she is asking other moms and families who would feel called by God to care for the orphans, to sign up to love these boys through emails, giving them hope in Jesus Christ that they are not FORGOTTEN. The idea is to pray for them, communicate with them, be there for them, send care packages to them and/or visit them - really whatever God calls you to do.

Is God calling you to be a Kolfe Mama?

PS - I hope to have pictures to share with you soon.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Matthew 25 missions

We were blessed to meet up with Lana and Ernie while we were in Mexico. They go there often to bring food, clothing, blankets and Bibles to some of the families the local church there is ministering too. In fact, many of you have given me donations for Lana to use for her garage sales to benefit Uganda, and Burundi. She also uses those donations to bring to Mexico.

On this trip we met this lady Ana, who had no formula and was not lactating, so she was feeding her 3 month old water and flour. Lana, who has known Ana for a while, gave her some bags of food and got to name the baby. I then nursed him for her and gave her the formula I had in my diaper bag. He was also very congested so Ernie got the Eucalyptus oil out of her purse and mixed it with some olive oil and rubbed it on him to help him breathe. It was neat how God was able to use the little we had to help this woman. When we returned to AZ and told my parents about her, their Bible study group jumped into action collecting quite a bit of formula to send down to her. She is very thankful for the help, but still bewildered why these Christians would help her. We had a good casual talk with her explaining that there are no strings attached, we just love her because Christ has filled us with this love and we just want to bless her.

We were also able to visit this lady, Marisa, who has 7 children. They collect cans and bottles to help pay for food. She has a beautiful faith in the Lord and a joyful spirit.
The kids loved holding her new puppies too :)

Monday, January 18, 2010

Memorial Box Monday - Mexico, Manta Ray and Memories

Javier took a week off of work in November, and one in December or he would lose them. We had no plans. We had looked into going to San Diego for a couple of nights - but with 2 hotel rooms per night and tickets to Legoland or Sea World it was going to be way out of our budget. We searched Craigslist and found an amazing deal on Thursday night for a trip to Mexico. It was for a week timeshare that started that Saturday at the same 5star resort we went to last year. We confirmed the reservation on Friday and packed in a hurry and left Saturday after Jordan's game. Again it was about $55 a night for 3 rooms (including tax) - 2 bedrooms with a kitchen and living room (with pull out beds) in between! The person selling it to us couldn't use her time share at the last minute because her daughter was in the hospital, so she sold it to us for about 1/2 of her cost! We couldn't even find 1 hotel room in San Diego for that price, let alone 3 rooms at an awesome resort. Also, the drive to Rocky Point is only 4 hours instead of 6 to San Diego.

This again was just so exciting that this would all fall in place on the week that Javier already had off and at a price we could afford. Also, since it had a kitchen, we could cook most of our meals in the room (can you imagine how much it would cost for a family of 10 to eat out 3 meals every day for 1 week!) God provided!

A few times we went in to town to buy carne asada tacos (grilled steak tacos). When we pulled up to the taco shop in someone's garage, he said, "We give good discounts to church groups." (in Spanish) - He saw our big huge white van and assumed we must be a church group :). We would buy about 18 tacos, beans, fixings and a few drinks all for $20! We returned to the same place a few times and became friends with the family and they even showed us around their house.

This was our 3 little boys' first experience at the beach and they loved it! All of our kids loved it. This is the best place for our family. This year it was especially dead and it just had several older people there, so we didn't have to worry about our kids at all. They all loved the kids and loved talking to us and watching our little parade of kids go by the pool several times each day.

Jameson sneaking somebody's beer that was left there - LOL

The kids enjoyed playing bingo, beach soccer, karaoke, building sand castles, collecting shells, swimming in the heated pool and playing in the ocean (which wasn't as cold as the outdoor pool).

One day Jordan was running into the ocean to throw back a shell that had a crab coming out of it and he stepped on a sting ray. He was bleeding and in a lot of pain so we carried him back to the hotel. The hotel doctor wanted $300 to clean it up and give him a shot. Javier asked if he would die without it, and the doctor said no, so we just took him back to the room and soaked it in hot water. A lady we had met was a nurse and she said to give him Tylenol and Benedryl and just soak it - and he was feeling much better (just tender) within a couple of hours. Now he is so proud of his "war story" and we call him Manta Raya Jordan(in Spanish).

The second to the last day our friend, Socorro, came to meet us there. She LOVED it and we loved having some extra help. She then road home with us for Thanksgiving.

It was almost exactly a year earlier that we were at the same resort hoping to hear news if we had passed court. This trip was a perfect celebration to reflect on all that the Lord has done for us in this last year. So for this Memorial Box Monday, we added a wrist band and shell to our box. Thank you Lord for giving us a much needed rest and relaxed family time after a hard year.

Friday, January 15, 2010

My chubby love

This little guy has so many nicknames - all seem to include love or chubby. Most all of my babies were happy and content, but he is the happiest ever. He giggles at any little thing and is so friendly with everyone. He will be 1 at then end of the month. (not sure what is going on with my camera - sorry about the color)

Thanks for your concern - Haiti/Dominican Republic

Many people have been asking us about Javier's family in the Dominican Republic. They are all fine - Praise God. They live about 160 miles from the epicenter, yet they have seen no damage at all. They did feel it, but it amazes me that the damage could be so severe just 160 miles from them. Javier's brother is a volunteer firefighter and they are planning to go help. He said that the problem is that they can not get much past the border because bridges have collapsed and they just can't get access by road very far. We are so thankful to be able to skype them often.

Javier does feel anxious to go help in some way, but he will wait until there is a clear need for him - maybe with rebuilding?

Let us pray for Haiti and especially the orphans - that they would be protected from all kinds of trafficking and that both the US and Haitian governments would cooperate to streamline their adoptions. I have read rumors about the US issuing emergency refugee visas for some of the orphans.