Sunday, January 15, 2017

Eighteen

18



Eighteen


Seriously???


How did this happen! 



My baby turned 18 yesterday! 



I am amazed at what a good guy,
our Conner has become!



And I can't believe my baby is 
graduating high school in a few months!! 


Really? 


How did this happen? 


Conner doesn't think I'll cry when he leaves 
for college...



He may change his thoughts when graduation comes along!




Tuesday, January 10, 2017

one week into homeschooling...

Bringing Hagan and Griggs home to school 
has been a huge blessing!!


Not only for Hagan, mom is pretty boring to hang with all day!
And well, little 4 year old brother...
he takes a lot of leading and more patience!


But Griggs, he's just right!
Not unlike Goldilocks and the three bears!


Watching them learn together,
challenge each other 
entertain each other
and encourage each other
is a joy! 
I love seeing their personalities work together!


For those who may not know,
Hagan and Griggs came home together.
They are not biological brothers 
but when we were matched with the two of them
Hagan was moved into the same foster home as Griggs -
so they were brothers for about 6 months before we got to them!

I've been thinking about the journey to bring them home -
that was a hard one!
We had no extra cash!
We already had 7 kids and dealing with Elijah's hurts day in and day out!
But, you know when God calls you to something -
HE is going to bless you!! 

I remember praying, "God, if you want to close doors,
if these adoptions are not from you,
I'm okay with that."


I know, can you believe I said that!!!
But, y'all, I was tired!! 
I was run down and at my wits end most of the time!
Not really a happy person.
Treading water through your days 
is a hard place to be!

My health wasn't good, but I faked it!
You know, "I choose this life."
It wasn't anyone else's problem! 

We had been told by numerous doctors -
"Don't adopt again! 
You have enough on your plate and things won't get better."
My response, 
"You are NOT my God! 
I will do what my God tells me to do!"

We fundraised e.v.e.r.y. penny to bring our boys home!
We are so thankful 3 1/2 years later for everyone who helped us bring them home!

And then,
we were done!!!

Let's end of a good note!!


But, before we left China - 
God whispered in both Bryan and my ears -
"You are not done,  your daughter is still here."

(story to be continued...)



Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Surprised emotions


My sweet Hagan surprised me today 
with an emotional reaction.


Hagan is usually so calm 
and easy going, 
taking everything in stride.

Today he and Griggs had a dental appointment.
Each of the boys had a little cavity that needed attention.
Griggs went first -
no problems!

And then it was Hagan's turn.
He was just there last week for his check up and had no problems.

Today was so different,
he was reluctant even walking back to the room.


I got him in the chair and they hygienist 
got out the gas thingy to put over Hagan's nose.

He started screaming! 
Scared to death of that this would not end well.

Sweet boy is so scared of having another surgery 
that he has lost trust in everyone 
that tries to put anything on his face.

I don't blame him - 
just surprised!

I guess we chose the right word to focus on in 2017
and the is healing!


Hagan did a great job when we promised him that 
we wouldn't use gas! 
He was still and was a champ!!

Trust was built with mom and 
with our dentist and staff! 
Baby steps in rebuilding!



Sunday, December 18, 2016

My favorite gift this year

Y'all know that we have had a rough year,
especially trying to help our son Elijah 
with the hurts and pains that he is trying to make sense of...

Last week he came home with a gift.

Though I didn't think much of it - 
because well...
Elijah comes home with papers 
wrapped with paper,
and lots of tape 
every day! 
His "gifts" are usually just paper 
taped in paper.
It's the thought that counts, right?! haha! 

But this gift brought me to tears.

Thursday afternoon I had a phone meeting with a therapist,
discussing Elijah.
While I was on the phone, locked in my closet
(cause it's the only quiet place in our house).

I heard commotion in the other room,
so I had to cut our conversation short...

 After calming Elijah down and working through this episode with him...
he gave me one of his wrapped gifts...

but this one was different - 
it was a cute craft project,
and that sweet face that melts me! 


and this card,
that he actually wrote on...


and the last sentence...

this is what it is all about! 

"Thank you for my home."

Elijah still has issues with self worth.
But he is worthy to be loved,
to have a Christmas tree
and 
to have a home!!! 

My prayer is that more children find their forever families this year
and next Christmas will begin to understand 
that they too are worthy of love,
of God's love,
and are worthy of a 
home.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Laynee - Bug

We celebrated Laynee's 
7th birthday 
last weekend!


What a fun day to make sure she knew 
it was all about her!! 


She got lots of coloring presents,



and cute clothes too! 


The boys were a bit disappointed in her gifts!
haha! 
It was funny to see their faces,
"girl presents are boring" said one boy! 
cough cough Griggs cough cough! 
Haha! 

Laynee is so excited that none of the boys 
want her things! 

Happy Birthday sweet girl!!! 

Thursday, December 1, 2016

9 years old!!!

Yesterday was Hagan's 9th birthday!


It was a slow day,
going at Hagan's recovery speed,
but it was good to see a smile on 
that face once again. 


Miles and I took Hagan to McD's for lunch,
though he couldn't play,
he was super excited the Happy Meal 
had TMNT toys!! 


After school everyone took turns playing Connect 4 
with Hagan.
A game no one wants to play with him,
because he always wins! 
And then opened presents! 


And we celebrated wth his choice of 
hot dogs and cupcakes for dinner!


I wish I would have gotten a photo of his face 
when I pulled out the 
"9" candle.
Who would have thought a little candle
would mean so much to 
our boy!!! 


Happy Birthday Hagan! 
We love you to the moon and back!! 


Sunday, November 27, 2016

My twins!

 Who would have thought these
 two needed each other so very much?

Only God!


I am amazed that God brought two little boys,
from two different worlds,
together,
to be not only brothers 
but 
"twins"!
(born 3 months apart)


Elijah has so much emotional pain
bottled up inside him!
Hurts on top of hurts!

He works so hard to trust people,
but sometimes 
the pain 
is just too much.


Hagan has so much physical pain.
Pain on top of pain.

He works so hard to be "average".
But the pain is just too much sometimes!

These two, 
God put together,
Two worlds apart!


Yet, brothers through and through!

Friday, November 11, 2016

Our Big Announcement!!

October 28, 2016

The day our first born became a husband!

Brady and his finance, Terrinika,
surprised us with news that they were going to get married 
sooner then planned! 

We are very excited to announce the beautiful union of 

Brady Alexander 
and 
Terrinika Michelle

Wow!!!! 
They kinda look a like!


My baby!!! 


Haika and King - aren't they angels!!
Our new grand babies!
(ages 6 and 5)


Our daughter-in-love, Terrinika Michelle 
and her babies!


Off to get married!!


And this is about where I started to cry! 
 FYI - It's really hard to take photos while crying!


I think Terrinika was about to cry too.


Judge Paul Raleeh was amazing! 
He shared with them how marriage is not
about finding the right person 
but being the right person!
Marriage is not taken lightly 
and is work to be done together.

He then prayed over them!

And Brady prayed over their marriage too! 
(I may have gone into the ugly cry at this moment!
Proud momma
and feeling Truly Blessed!)


the ring...


the kiss...


and it's official!! 
Introducing Brady and Terrinika Anderson


and family!!! 


Brady, Terrinika, Hakia and King
We are all excited to be one BIG family!! 

Friday, July 15, 2016

Cards are his love language...

My birthday was last week and my hero
was the only kiddo who made me a card! 

In his own quiet way,
no one else even knew.
He had made the card days before,
put it in a special place
until my birthday.
Then he quietly but it in front of me,
and gave me a big ole Hagan type hug!

My sweet boy will make a wonderful hubby one day! 

He has a heart of gold!

and according to his card, 
he gives it to me!! 



Oh Hagan, you have my heart!! 

We got sad news the other day,
but hey, as Hagan says,
"People can send me cards again." 
(and he still has every card from his last surgery.)

While in Colorado a few weeks ago,
I noticed a screw in his back bulging out.

UGH!!!!!! 

We called the doctor's office as soon as we got home,
got in for x-rays 
and went to talk to the surgeon.

I told Dr. B that I was hoping that he would 
call me, "crazy and overly sensitive" 


but shoot!!! 

Mom was right! 
I hate being right some times!!

Though the surgeon wants to set him up for surgery in the next week,
Hagan begged him to allow him to go to his Little People camp in a few weeks.
So, we will have X-rays again before camp,
Aug 8-12.
If X-rays don't show much change he will be allowed to go.
If it's gotten worse,
and needs emergency surgery -
he won't go to camp! 


Please pray with us that everything will remain stable and that Hagan
will be able to go to camp! 
He has his heart set on it! 

and we'll let y'all know when surgery will be scheduled so you can shower 
him again with cards! 
Thank you so much! 

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

a year ago our lives changed in two incredible ways!!!

Our babies were finally in our arms!!! 

(Laynee Faith - 5 yrs old)

(Miles John - 3 yrs old) 

Whether they wanted us or not!!


They began to enjoy each other...


 And understand what being a "family" means...



What a wild ride this year has been!!


Up's and down's!!! 


Learning about each other 
and growing together!


We are so blessed to call these two treasures "ours"!!!



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