Friday, November 21, 2008

Fun with Benjamin

We have been blessed to have my mom here the past couple of weeks and it's been so fun watching Benjamin get to know his grandma Anderson. He's been such a trooper as we have tried to get him back in the routine of being home. My mom and I took Benjamin to the bookstore and the mall this week and while we were there, Benjamin decided to try undressing himself. He managed to get his shirt about half-way off and determined that it would stay that way no matter how many times I fixed it. I was really wishing I had my camera. He decided to do a repeat performance for me at dinner that night, so I got a couple. By dinner his shirt was wet from spilled water, so we got the spiked look as well. Perhaps he was trying to be a baby trendsetter.
Helping me with laundry
Helping Grandma eat dinner
Playing with Grandma's hat
Posing with his new look

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I'm not totally sure what all the Lord is trying to teach us at this point in our lives, but one thing I know for sure that is that I need to learn to depend on Him and Him alone. My car has been acting up for the last couple of months and we have taken it in several times and poured way too much money into repairs. This weekend the check engine light came on yet again and Matt and I decided that maybe it was time to think about temporarily going to one car until we could save up enough money for another. Then last night, Matt and I went out to celebrate the completion of my half marathon and his first section of the CPA exam and when we came out of the restaurant to come home, Matt's car was completely dead. We got a jump from mall security and prayed all the way home that we would not die on the highway. Then this morning it was dead again in the garage. So now we have one dead car and one unreliable one. Back to the dependence thing. It's amazing what I depend on in this world to meet my needs. I want so badly to be able to trust the Lord completely and yet when things like this happen, my first reaction is panic. Ouch. So I was reading the Living Proof blog today and came across This Post. Suddenly I feel like our cars are red balloons and I'm praising the Lord for giving me some new perspective. Boy do I have a lot to learn!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Choosing to Trust and to Praise

I've been putting this post off for over a week now. I just don't want to write it. I'm still processing through and well, it just doesn't make sense. We are home from California and Jack did not come home with us. We have a million questions. Why would God take us out there only to bring us home empty-armed? What is His purpose in all this? Is it over or is this just another bump in the road to Jack eventually coming into our family? Why does building our family have to be so hard? We cannot yet let go of the hope that Jack will be in our family someday, so we are still praying and asking God to let it be. But we are also trusting that if He does not, He has a better thing that He is carrying out. Our hearts are breaking for little Jack. As I watched Matt playing the tickle game with Benjamin the other night and heard Benjamin's sweet laughter, I couldn't help but think of precious little Jack who won't have a daddy coming home from work to tickle him and play chase games and other boy stuff. And so I have to recognize that God is God over that too and I pray that He will watch over Jack and protect his life and be his Father.

Our faith has been tested to its very limits. Some days I feel as though I cannot bear anymore. Other days I feel more trusting. I'm so glad that who God is is not based on my emotions. I know that He is the same today as He was yesterday and last week and last month. As I sat down to write this post, I was listening to some music and heard the song "Bring the Rain" by MercyMe. I remember listening to this song the week Benjamin was born and praying that if his adoption did not go through, that I would still praise the Lord. So now I am praying for strength to praise the Lord when everything in me wants to grieve over the loss of this precious child. It is so easy to talk about praising the Lord in the midst of pain when there is no pain, but in the middle of it, it is difficult. But I will do it. Whatever the outcome of this, I pray that the name of the Lord will be glorified. We appreciate your prayers.

"Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings your glory
And I know there'll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that's what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain"

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Boys

We feel so blessed to be in this wonderful hotel. We moved hotels on Sunday afternoon because we were not getting any sleep in a one room suite. So now we have a two room suite and a door between the two rooms and it's been great. Benjamin gets great naps, we get naps, and Benjamin has room to move and play. This hotel also has real cribs for the boys. Our last one had one pack n play that we could use, which meant that Jack was sleeping in the middle of the second bed. Fine, but not as good as a crib.

We got to have Jack here again last night and he is still with us today. We are just falling more and more in love with him. He's such a sweet baby. Benjamin is doing pretty well with him too. He still gets too rough with him, but he loves to see him and talk to him. They are going to be such good brothers.

Here are a few pictures of the boys that we've taken the past couple of days.

Playing with daddy before bed
Sweet little man

Benjamin getting a look at his little brother to be

Touring in L.A.

Well, we now understand why so many people live in California. The weather is amazing! It's so nice to go to the ocean and not have major humidity. I don't know if it's like that all year round, but it was beautiful yesterday!

So we had Jack until about 9:30 Monday morning and then Sarah wanted to spend the day with him, so we decided to use our free time to do some sight seeing. We went first to Rodeo Drive and walked up and down it. I must confess I was not all that impressed. Just seemed like a place to spend gobs of money on strange looking clothing. Matt did offer to buy me a Louis Vuitton purse, but I declined. ;) I did get a picture in front of Tiffany & Co, but only because it was one of the locations where the Beth Moore Daniel study was filmed and I thought it would be fun to have a picture there.

After we left Rodeo Drive, we went to the Santa Monica Pier to get a look at the pacific ocean. It was amazing! I just love the ocean! When we first walked out onto the pier there were tons of people standing all over it. We started to walk on through and then were asked to step to the side so we wouldn't be in the picture. We did so, but thought it rather odd that no one else was asked to step to the side. Then we heard "action" and all the people we had seen began their purposeful walking across the pier. We felt a little awkward, but tickled by the whole thing at the same time. I mean, what do you picture when you think of L.A.? I always picture people making movies all the time, and here we were seeing our stereo type lived out before us. It was funny. We enjoyed walking down the pier and getting a good look at the view. Then we went to get lunch. You know you are parents when you eat at McDonalds for lunch instead of trying something new because avoiding a fight over food sounds better than a new restaurant. Plus it was cheaper.

After lunch we ventured out onto the sand. There was a neat little playground with some swings on the beach, so we let Benjamin play for a while and as usual he loved it. Then we took our shoes off and walked down the beach. Last time we went to the beach, Benjamin hated the whole experience. This time he was much more comfortable and loved it. He didn't like it when a wave came up and touched him, but he loved walking in the sand. It was a great way to get some energy out after being in a hotel for a few days.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Here he is

What an exciting two days this has been! We arrived in Los Angeles yesterday morning and met with our lawyer. Then we found a hotel and crashed. We were pretty tired to say the least. Benjamin still has not recovered from the two hour time difference and tonight is another time change, so it may still be hard for him. But we are so thrilled to be here. I got to meet Sarah and Jack last night and they are both just precious. What a beautiful baby he is! Tonight we all went and met her and she is allowing us to keep Jack for the weekend. He is just so sweet and we are loving having him with us and getting to love on him. We would appreciate your prayers as we continue through this process. Pray that the Lord would continue to smooth the way as He has done so faithfully throughout this journey. And enjoy these precious pictures. We love you all!