Friday, December 3, 2010

Tomorrow's the Big Day!

Don't forget about our Usborne Book Fair, tomorrow from 1-4pm at our church, Mt. Auburn UMC.  Here's the ad that was in our church bulletin:

You will find fun, educational books for all of the children in your life. Usborne offers more than 1,800 titles—from infant board books to middle school reference books and lots in between. The Book Fair will be held Saturday, Dec. 4, in the Community Room from 1 to 4 p.m.  Besides having a broad book selection, you will also be able to place special orders from the entire Usborne collection.  Can't
come, shop online at here.  Start your Christmas shopping now! All sale proceeds will be donated to Sarah and Travis for their adoption fund. Visa, Mastercard, Discover, checks and cash accepted.

If you need directions or any have other questions, just contact me at  The online portal will be open until December 5 at 11:59pm.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Christmas Ornaments Now Available!

See our new tab across the top for photos and ordering info!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Monday Mia-isms

I have a confession to make.  Don't judge me, but I want to let you in on one of my secrets: I think babies are pretty boring.  I say this because I am having so. much. fun with Mia right now.  I absolutely love that she's becoming more and more autonomous every day.  I love that she copies everything I do.  And I love her increasing vocabulary.  When I think back to last winter, I mostly remember very long days of trying to entertain my little blob of a baby, who also incidentally never liked to be by herself...ever.  I know we had other obstacles facing us at that time, but those winter months made for long days. 

Now, Mia has us rolling with laughter and standing back in awe with how fast she is growing and changing.  I also know that if I don't take the time to document these moments, when she self-corrects they'll soon fade from memory.  So I decided to document them here and share a few with you:

Catty: Currently what she calls cats.  It's kind of like a combo of cat and kitty.

Aah-keys: Glasses.  I'm not entirely sure why she calls them this, but when you hear it in her sweet little voice, you'd melt.

Jap: Giraffe.  I can normally understand about 85% of what she says, but this one almost always throws me.  The other morning she was so frustrated with me because I couldn't figure out what she was asking me for.  I thought she wanted to jump in her bed, so when I would ask, "Jump?" I got back, "No Mommy!  Jap!"

Mon-hee: Monkey.

Ta-vis: Travis.  Yup, I accidentally taught her that her daddy's name is Travis.  I really didn't mean to, I promise!  I was calling downstairs for him one night when I had her in the bathtub, and she just picked it up.  When you ask her what his name is, she does say Daddy, but if she hears me say Travis, she'll start parroting it. 

Cock-a-doo: This one's more obvious (what a rooster says) but it's entirely adorable to hear her say it.  She's gotten quite proficient with her animal noises and can tell you what a cat, dog, pig, sheep, cow, horsey, chicken, rooster, duck, goose, bird, turkey, monkey, lion, tiger, owl, and goat says. 

She's also learning her manners well.  She says Please, Thank You, and You're Welcome, and even corrected Mommy the other day.  I asked Travis to hand me a glass of water at dinner and she, stone-faced, looked at me and said, "Mommy!  Say thank you!"

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Book Fair Info!

Here's your official invite to our Usborne Book Fair on Saturday, December 4th from 1-4pm at our church, Mt. Auburn United Methodist.  The online portal is open now, though, so you can start shopping here.  The portal will close December 5th at midnight.  All proceeds will be going to our adoption fund, so thank you in advance for your support!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Not About Me

Today is Orphan Sunday.  It's a day that passes by without much fanfare in most churches, including my own.  I don't blame anyone - there are a hundred different worthy causes that need our attention (including the next Sunday which is the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church).  It's also easy to get wrapped up in our own lives and trials and tribulations and forget about those things that aren't staring us in the face on a daily basis.

I have to admit that I've been feeling pretty down lately.  Because we're fundraising this time, our second adoption is starting more slowly than our first.  It'll probably take us a bit longer to get our paperwork all completed, for various reasons, but some just coming down to finances.  I know it's all in God's hands and I'm sure this is what He has called us to do, but sometimes that peace and assurance gets muffled in the midst of uncertainty and doubt. 

And many of you saw on FB the week I had with my poor mom.  She fell Monday morning at the Y and shattered her right ankle and sprained her left one.  She needed to have surgery pretty immediately to reset it, so Monday found us at the ER and then orthopedic surgeon and Tuesday was spent at the hospital.  It's going to be a long recovery, and I'm so glad I live so close by to help her out during this time.  I didn't, however, get to my Christmas ornaments yet.  This week, I promise.

So here I am, feeling sorry for myself.  And then I read this on my friend Kathy's blog:
In the past week, we were made aware of some very difficult circumstances in an orphanage in Ethiopia. Families traveling with our adoption agency visited this orphanage while they were in Addis Ababa, and got the word to those of us traveling soon that there were needs and what we could bring to help them. This was the Facebook status of one of the moms traveling with the group:

"A hard start to our day. Visited an orphanage with deplorable conditions, and left in tears. Our group was able to buy 10 crib mattresses (yes, babies are sleeping on the wooden bottoms of the cribs). But they also need massive quantities of diapers...ripped pieces of sheets wrapped around their bottoms and held in place w/ their onesie t-shirts isn't cutting it."
That's when God's gentle but firm hand gripped my shoulder and shook me.  This is what I should be feeling sorry about.  This is why we have to go back to Ethiopia.  This is why the things I'm whining about are nothing compared to this.  Can you even imagine?  Not even enough money to buy diapers.  I have visited some of the orphanages in Ethiopia, but I have not seen conditions like these.  I know they are doing the best with what they've got, but this is why these children need our help. 

Kathy and her family will be travelling to Ethiopia for Christmas for their courtdate and to meet their 3 new kiddos.  If you'd like to help in anyway, whether it be sending them some smaller item donations to take over or sending some money to purchase diapers, etc. when they arrive, contact her here

I'll leave you with a video my friend Kim (another adoption travel buddy) shared on FB today. 

Hope is Fading – Orphan Sunday from Allan Rosenow on Vimeo.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Where We're At

Yes, as an English major I know it's not correct grammar to end a sentance with a preposition, but whatever.  I've been meaning to blog for awhile now, but it's been kind of crazy around here.

Mia continues to keep me on my toes and has me laughing out loud at least 10 times a day.  Today at lunch she pointed at the phone and said, "Hello! (But pronounced more like, Hewo.)  Talk!"
Me: "Talk?  Who are you going to call?"
Mia: "A cow!"
Me: "A cow?  You want to call a cow?"
Mia: "Yup."
Me: "What's he going to say?"
Mia: "Moo!"

Hilarious, right?  I wonder if she's going to end up with my dry sense of humor.  Along with cracking me up, she's also been pushing her limits in almost every way.  I have to keep reminding myself that this is perfectly natural; toddlers like to push the boundaries so they know where they are.  But still....somedays I feel like all I do is correct her, which is just exhausting.  Her newest antic is pushing the buttons on our iPod docking station.  The other day she just kept pushing them over and over and over again.  Each time I'd come out of the kitchen, correct her, and move on.  Then I'd hear the music turn on and off, and I'd walk back into the living room and see her looking for me with one hand outreached.  The last time this happened I walked out and she had gotten her baby doll and had her pushing the buttons.  I tried to keep a straight face while correcting her, but how clever was that on her part?

And onto the adoption front.  We're still working on our massive paperchase and probably will be through Christmas.  Along side of this huge undertaking, I've gone back to work in part-time retail in order to help save more money for the adoption.

We also have a couple of more fundraisers coming up just in time for the holidays.  First, one of my sweet Bible study ladies, Linda Swisher, is hosting a Usborne Book Fair on our behalf the first Saturday of December (12/4).  Come from 1:00-4:00pm at our church, Mt. Auburn UMC, and buy Christmas presents for your kids, grandkids, neices and nephews, and take home your books the same day.  We're looking to see if we can set something up to online shop, so stay tuned for more news.

Second, we have a few t-shirts leftover that we need to sell!  Here's what we've got:

Youth Small - 4
Youth Medium - 3
Small - 2
Medium - 1 SOLD!
Large - 1

Youth Small - 3
Youth Medium - 5
Small - 3
Large - 1
XLarge - 1  SOLD!

If you'd like to purchase any of these, message me at  Shirts are $22 each with shipping.

And lastly, we're going to be making Christmas ornaments to sell.  I should have samples to post this weekend, and will have ordering info up early next week. 

Thank you all for continuing to follow and support our next adoption journey.  Hope you all have a safe and fun Halloween!

Friday, October 1, 2010

And the Winner is...

Congratulations Lisa!  Lisa is a member of our church, and her daughter is a member of Travis' youth group.  She graciously volunteered to sell a book of tickets for us earlier in the month.  What she later told me is that she has been drooling over the iPad for awhile, but couldn't justify the cost, even for a Christmas present.  So her husband offered to buy her the entire book of tickets to increase her chances.  It looks like you're going to get your Christmas wish after all!

Thank you to everyone who participated.  I mean that from the bottom of my heart.  As I sat earlier counting all the tickets, I was moved to tears by the generousity of so many, some who know us and some that don't.  I even prayed over the tickets, that God would be glorified through this and for the winner.

Our grand total for the iPad Giveaway is $1500!  We still have a long way to go, but what a great way to start this adoption!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Last Call for T-Shirts!

Just a friendly reminder that we are accepting t-shirts orders through tomorrow, Friday, September 24!  Or, if you happen to be in the Indianapolis area this weekend, stop by our church's Fall Festival on Sunday from 1-7pm.  We, along with our friends the Hennessy's, will have a booth set up to our sell t-shirts and beautiful handmade dolls for the Hennessy's adoption! 

I promise that we'll return to our regularly scheduled blogging soon.  I've got new pictures of Mia to post, some new stories to tell, and of course, more progress to report on adoption #2.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Why Adopt (Again)?

To put it simply: it's what God has called us to do.  As it says in Proverbs 24:12, "Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do.  God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows that we know and holds us responsible to act."  It's true.  Not just in adoption, but in every part of what Christ calls us to.  If we read and study His Word, follow the path He lays before us, and seek Him with all our heart, mind, and soul, He will open our eyes anew.  He will reveal fresh revelations to us, day by day, for our entire walk of faith with Him.  It's an awesome promise He makes to us, and frankly, it thrills me. 

Here's the catch - once we know something, we can't go back.  We can no longer claim ignorance and say we just didn't know.  When He reveals to us a new truth, it's usually not just for our benefit.  He wants us to use it, put it into practice, and it's always to bring Him glory.

So you see, when people ask why adopt again, it's because our eyes have been opened to this awful fact that 147 million children are nameless.  They have no one to call them their own.  They are alone, afraid, and at risk.  And we have come face to face with these facts.  I have seen their faces, their pleading and longing eyes.  No, I cannot adopt 147 million, but I can bring another home. 

I was reading on another adoption blog this evening about how the shear cost scares so many away from adoption.  Her friend replied, "How poor is your God?"

We do not deserve your help and support.  Just like the grace He so freely gives to us, we have done nothing to merit it.  But it brings great hope and peace to my soul to know that I serve an all-powerful, sovereign God who has infinite resources at His disposal. 

At the end of the day, this will be about Him, not us.  There will be one less bed filled in the orphanage.  One less victory for the enemy.  And hopefully, one more child in the kingdom of God. 

Saturday, September 4, 2010

So What's the Deal with the iPad?

I know there's been a lot of activity on our T-Shirt fundraiser tab, and many of you have even purchased your own (thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottoms of our hearts!), but I wanted to draw your attention to our iPad Giveaway.  Yes, you read that right, we are giving away a 16GB WiFi + 3G iPad.  Why?  Well, truthfully I got the idea from my adoption buddy and Ethiopian travel friend Kathy Garrison, whose family is currently in the process of adopting 2 more kiddos from Ethiopia.  She had tremendous success with it, and really it seemed to me a no-brainer.  So we decided to do one too.

Here's how it works: For every $10 donation you make, you get one ticket entered into the giveaway.  So if you donate $50, you have 5 tickets.  Make sense?  But here's what I love about this fundraiser.  You don't actually have to donate any money to us to help us (although you might want to for your own ticket and shot at the iPad).  Instead, we'd like you tell your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, whoever about this giveaway.  It's a great way to get other people involved and raise awareness about adoption.  Please consider reposting this on your Facebook, blog, or even just plain ol' talking to your friends (I know, a shocking thought in this technological age!)

If you'd like to try to sell a book of 10 tickets, message me or leave me a comment.  I can send you everything you need and you don't have to give us any money up front.  It really does take a village, and please know how hard it has been for us to even ask you guys for help.  I can't begin to tell you how emotionally taxing the last few days have been for me.  When I received our first donation and t-shirt order, I was literally in tears.  It made me realize how important it is for me to be a blessing to others when the opportunity presents itself.  Thank you so much for surrounding us with your love and support to bring this little guy home.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Why Is Adoption So Expensive?

I'm sure that unless you've adopted yourself or know someone close to you who has, you might be wondering why adoption is so expensive.  You're certainly not alone, and take comfort that Travis and I had the same thoughts before God led us down this path.

First, let me tell you what all the money is not for.

It is not a donation.  We hear from many people what a good thing we're doing, how great it is that we're giving a child a family, etc.  While all of this is true, adoption is about so much more than this.  The blessing we will receive from this child will far outweigh the blessing we can give to him.  We try to think of it more like paying a ransom for our child.  Think of it this way: is there any price you wouldn't pay to get your child back?  It's the same for us, we just haven't held him in our arms yet.

It is not a business.  Adoption agencies, at least credible, Christian agencies like the one we work with, are non-profit organizations.  They receive no funding from the government and nothing from the countries they work with.  Their mission is simple: to join children with their forever families.  The money we pay them is entirely for the processing of our paperwork, our homestudy, their in-country staff and facilities that will care for our child before we can, and advocating for our child and us to the Ethiopian government.  I can't even tell you how much they do for us, especially while we were in Ethiopia.

It is not lining the pockets of corrupt government officials.  I know all countries have their problems, and each country is different, but I feel confident that the international fee we pay to Ethiopia is going where it should.  The money they receive goes to help run all the orphanages in country and to pay the MOWA (Ministry of Orphans and Women's Affairs) workers to process our paperwork as well help get orphans paper ready for adoption (meaning to verify that a child is truly an orphan and to obtain evidence to prove this so).

We decided that because we would be fundraising some of this adoption, we'd keep track of our expenses so you could see just where your money would be going.  If you click on the Adoption Funding tab at the top, you can view a quick total of our expenses thus far.  Please, please, please do not hesistate to contact me if you have further questions about any of this.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Africa Awaits...

I'm sure some of you have wondered when this post would appear.  I've had many people begin to ask us what our next plans are.  Would we have a biological child?  Would we adopt again?  And when?

Truthfully, we always knew we would adopt again, we just didn't know when.  But we've felt a stirring in our hearts that last couple of months that led to subsequent prayer and the decision to go back to Ethiopia.  We've been accepted into AWAA's Ethiopia program again, this time to bring our son home.

So now we begin this crazy process all over again, but this time with a little less fear and a bit more confidence. My goal is to have our dossier completed and sent off by around the time Mia turns 2 in February (a crazy thought in and of itself!).  Infant boy referrals have been around 4-6 months after dossier submission, so we're hoping for a referral by the end of next summer.  One big difference this time around is that Ethiopia has changed their travel policies so we'll make 2 trips this time.  (Before you think anything bad, please know this is for the good of the children, and I can explain it later in another post.)  Tentatively, we'll all three go on the first trip, and then my mom will accompany me on the second when we bring our son home (approx. 4-6 weeks later). 

Although we don't look at adoption as just a mission, it's how God is building our family, it is clear in Scripture the responsibility we as Christians have to the fatherless.

Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless
maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed. 
Psalm 82:3

Seek justice,
encourage the oppressed.
Defend the cause of the fatherless,
plead the case of the widow.  
Isaiah 1:17

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.  
 James 1:27

So now we come humbly before you to ask a question we didn't our first time around.  Will you help us in this journey?  God may or may not be calling you to adopt, but perhaps He's calling you to be part of this ministry, prayerfully or financially.  Adoption is expensive, we're looking somewhere around $25,000 - $30,000, but we know that what God begins, He will finish.  He is faithful to His word. 

Please click on the links above to find out how you can get involved and help bring hope and love to the fatherless.  It all starts with one...  

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Say Cheese!

So when your husband's a photographer, you might think we'd have tons and tons of family photos.  Wrong.  It's a tricky thing to actually photograph yourself in a picture while taking it.  And Travis is incredibly picky when it comes to actually being photographed.  But when Mia's one year anniversary came around, I knew we couldn't let the moment pass us by.  And I'm so happy to know photographers like Maike Tillen.  She knew exactly what we were looking for, and I feel captured our family well.  Here's a preview of some of my favorite shots.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Our First Year with You

One year ago today we held our sweet baby girl in our arms for the very first time. After months (and years!) of longing and praying, in a single moment we were transformed into a mother and father and we became a family of three.

I can't even begin to tell you how much joy Mia brings to our lives every single day. She. is. awesome. I hope you enjoy this video I put together to commemorate her one year anniversary with us. It's amazing to see how much she's grown and changed!

We love you, Emilia Jane. Our life is so much richer and fuller because you're in it.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: New Food

Note: It must be said that while my daughter does love to eat, she loves to eat those things she loves to eat. For instance, while I cut some corn off the cob for her, she wanted to eat it the same way Mama and Daddy were, right off the cob.

"Daddy, you just help me a little bit."


"What's this part? Are you sure I won't like it?"

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Ten on Tuesday - Mia's Top Ten

This is one post I've been mulling over for awhile now. I don't have an actual baby book started for Mia, for a variety of reasons, but one being that I hadn't yet found one that had an adoption focus. I never wanted her to have a baby book that had a ton of empty pages because they didn't apply to her (i.e. pregnancy, birth, ultrasounds, hospital stay, etc.). I did actually see one on another family's blog (My Family, My Journey) that is adoption focus and has plenty of pages for those extra special events in her life, but just haven't gotten around to purchasing it.

Anyway, I digress. I tell you all this to say that while I don't have an actual baby book, I do have a small journal that I've kept all her important milestones. Awhile back I started a 10 Things Mia Loves list. It's evolved and changed as our little one continues to grow and change herself, but I wanted to share Mia's Top 10 List with you:

10. Her Giant Teddy Bear: Given to her at a baby shower last March before we even had her referral, I remember wondering what the heck I was going to do with so many stuffed animals. This bear, however, has found a special place in her heart as she requests it almost every morning when she wakes up in her crib. She take a few moments to roll around with it (it's as big as she is!) and then is ready for her "mil" (milk).

9. Being Outside: I'm pretty sure my kid would live outdoors if I'd let her. Don't get me wrong. I love spring, summer, and fall because the weather is for the most part pretty temperate. But I'm not one of those people that enjoy sweating profusely in the sweltering sun. I do make an effort to take her out a least once a day, but tears almost inevitably follow when it's time to go back inside.

8. Sneezing & Tooting: Must I say more? What kid doesn't think these are hilarious?

7. Wind chimes: This one surprises me. We have a couple of wind chimes outside, and it is her most favorite thing to make them sing. It must stem from her love of music, but I have never seen a kid get more excitement from such a small thing.

6. Ducks: Ah yes, our Quack Quacks. This was the first animal noise she could make, and has since applied the sound to all birds. And when she's feeling extra silly, she'll tell you cows and sheep also say Quack Quack with a big ol' grin on her face because she knows she's teasing you. I thought it apropos that she should be a duck this year for Halloween.

5. Her Grandmas: She's got three of them, and she loves them all. Besides Mama and Daddy (and Papaw, too!) these three ladies are her most beloved playmates. She's certainly got them wrapped around her finger and they can't get enough of her either.

4. Anything electronic: This kid loves cell phones and anything that might look like a cell phone. Remotes, walkie talkies, computers, cameras, you name it. Most items become like phones to her, as she walks around the house with them to her ear. I used to occasionally let her play with my cell phone, but after she accidentally called 911 (twice!) with my locked phone, I had to cut her off. They call back, in case you were wondering.

3. Blueberries: Our kiddo certainly loves to eat (and now, please) but she has a love affair with blueberries that I just don't understand. She asks for "blues" at least 4 times a day; in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening, and even in the car. I have to cut her off because you know what too much fruit will do. I'll leave it at that. We almost had a meltdown yesterday at Meijer because the lady in line in front of us was purchasing a pint of beloved blues. Mia couldn't quite understand that they weren't ours. I kept telling her she could have some when we got home, to which she said, "Yeah!" and then promptly pointed back to the blues. Oh well. I guess you really can't reason with an 18 month old.

2. Doggies: It's a good thing Hank took so well to her because Mia absolutely adores him. She loves to love on him, including giving him kisses (sometimes with her tongue - yuck!) and "gently" patting him on the back. And now since she's learned the parts of her face, she likes to point out his eyes to us.

1. Her Mama and Daddy: This one brings tears to my eyes as I type. I could not have asked for a more affectionate little girl. She loves to give us hugs, kisses, and cuddles, and she above all other things, wants her Mama and Daddy close by at all times. She hates to be separated from me, which is something we've been working on, but I do secretly love that she prefers me to anyone else in the world. I mean, isn't that how it's supposed to be?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Will Starve for Food

I've had Africa on my mind a lot lately. It's hard not to especially as Travis and his youth group are gearing up for their annual 30 Hour Famine. The Famine is an event started by World Vision in which youth groups all over the country go 30 hours without food in order to raise money and awareness for starving children all over the world. Did you know that 25,000 children die each day from hunger and other preventable causes? That is a massive amount of kids. The good news, however, is that hunger related deaths are 100% preventable.

This is our fourth year to participate, and each year our kids have raised around $7,000. With World Vision's matching grants that number gets multiplied x 4. Pretty cool for a group of 30 kids, wouldn't you say?

The 30 Hour Famine is probably the most near and dear to our hearts as we realize that our daughter could have been one of the countless faces you see in the promotional videos. I think it especially struck Travis harder this year, having been home with Mia for almost a whole year. He came home the other night from youth group and said that he just wept watching a video with his kids about the hunger plight of the kids in Niger. He said, "I just kept seeing Mia's face in these kids. How much more personal does it have to get before we realize we have everything to give?"

I know there are plenty of good causes that need financial and prayerful support. This is one of them. Would you consider donating $30, $60, or even $90 to this effort? Just $30 will feed a child for an entire month. Your donation is tax deductible. If you are interested, please leave me a comment with your contact information, and we can make arrangements. You can read more about this awesome event at:

Thursday, August 5, 2010

They Grow Up Too Fast...

I've been somewhat sentimental lately in regards to Mia. I suppose it's because I feel like somewhere in the last month we turned the corner from baby to toddler. Her vocabulary literally exploded in what seems like a week, and she now adds probably 2 to 3 new words every day. She now regularly says Mama, Daddy, Mamaw, Nana (which works for Nana, Banana, and Savannah), Babby (for Gabby!), blues (blueberries), quesedilla, baby, book, duck, kitty, whale, truck, boy, girl, ball, please, cheese...the list goes on and on. She's become quite the parrot (like when I called her a little punk the other day), but she's also putting together the words with the actual objects which some days shocks the pants off of me.

We also got in four new teeth last week. Four! We doubled our teeth! And she just looks bigger to me. Every morning I think she's grown an inch. And her hair. Where to begin. I noticed in the bathtub last week how long it was getting and decided to do a little experiment in pig tails. Oh. my. goodness. She not only looks adorable, but it really makes her look like a little girl. We've also been exploring more hair products, which I'm sure is only the beginning of what will be a life long experiment for Mommy.

Here's a quick video especially for Auntie Anne who wanted to see all her new teeth, but bonus! you can also see her trying to wear Mommy's shoe and some of her new vocab.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Our Water Baby

I can't believe July has almost passed us by and the summer is quickly coming to an end! Although I do love fall, winter is my least favorite season and so I always dread it. We've had so much fun this summer, especially outside and in the water. I think my daughter would live outside if I'd let her! She loves any kind of water, from the baby pool in our yard to the toddler pool at the YMCA to the ocean waves. I'm not sure if it's just her nature or the baby swimming lessons, but she is fearless. I crack up when she sticks her whole face in and comes up smiling! Yesterday I drug out the pool and some of her stacking cups. She thought it was hilarious to pour water on poor Hank as he was trying to rest in the shade. Every time he'd move, she find him again!
Here's a few pictures from a week or so ago when Daddy was home with us.

I promise we give our daughter plenty of water to drink!

At the Y's pool for Cooper's Bday party with our BFF Savannah.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

10 years ago...

Some called us crazy. Others said it wouldn't last. (Wait, does this sound like a song?) Yes, it's true. Ten years ago today I, a 19 year old bride, said I do to the most wonderful (23 year old) man in the world. Were we crazy? Probably. 19 doesn't look nearly as old as it did back then. But here we are a decade later, and I have absolutely no doubt we're in this thing till the end.

Our wedding day,
July 1, 2000

Our life together has definitely taken some twists and turns, some planned and others unexpected. I've heard it said that if you want to make God laugh, just tell him your plans for the future. Well, I'm sure He's had a great big chuckle over me. I always thought we would have moved somewhere more exotic, that we'd have uber-cool careers, and be world travelers. I guess we're 1 for 3. We've definitely done our share of traveling, though not all of it has been recreational based. We still live in the same zip code I grew up in, and as for uber cool careers? I guess it's up to how you define cool. Ten years ago I would have said that for me it involves wearing a suit, working in a high rise building, and being so important you'd get called anytime, day or night.

My college graduation,
May 2004

You know what I learned? My mistake was thinking that this life was all about us. Because it's not. God has much more planned for us, and it's really only just beginning. And that is what I treasure most in my husband. Although he only came to believe in Christ a little over ten years ago, he is one of the most devoted and serious Christians I know. And I'm sure he would be embarrassed to read this and would even argue why that isn't true, but that's really all part of his humble spirit. He is the spiritual leader of our house (a job that I wouldn't want to try to fill), and I know that I am truly blessed with this man. It doesn't hurt either that he's handsome, makes me laugh, loves me and our daughter to pieces and would walk though fire for us.

Paris, May 2005
Five Year Anniversary European Tour

Sedona, AZ, June 2008
Navajo Mission Trip

I love you Travis. You are an amazing husband and partner in this life. God has richly blessed you and your ministry, and I'm excited to see where He takes us next. Thank you for an awesome first 10 years; I wouldn't trade one single minute.

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia,
August 17, 2009

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

From the Archives: When Our Toys Are Boring...

So I found this old blog post today that I never published. It's dated back in October, and holy cow! I can't believe how much Mia has changed in the last few months. So far toddlerhood has been so much fun, but it's hard not to get a bit nostalgic when you see her little baby face.

Apparently I was in desperation trying to find something new she'd like to play with.
She thought it was hilarious to look at you through it. Of course the tongue's got to be sticking out.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Ready for Auditions

So, the following is a result of what happens when Daddy has full creative control when dressing Mia for the day. I'm pretty sure she could have auditioned for Hair or Footloose and walked right on. Surprisingly, I allowed her out of the house that morning, but as soon as Daddy left for work, we changed. I was rewarded by a later diaper leak, and the whole outfit was changed again. Sigh.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Kiss Me

We just discovered we have a little narcissist in the kitchen today. I think the video speaks for itself...

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

A couple of weeks ago, we found ourselves with nothing to do on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. If you know our family very well, you know this hardly ever happens. So we decided to take Mia to the Indianapolis Museum of Art. She did pretty well in the museum, but the most fun was letting her explore the grounds. I really wanted to get her picture with the huge #1, but by the time we made it back to it, I was tired from walking/carrying/pushing the stroller, and I think Mia was about to her limit to. I guess we still have 9 more months to capture it.