It's the last day of November.

And you know, I've never felt more thankful for anything in my whole life.

Maybe I don't have everything I want, but I can promise you that I have everything I need.  And that's all I truly want.

I can't wait for next November to look back on all the things God's done.



a day in the life

I never talk about the real life part of what I live, or so it seems.

And in case you haven't noticed, I love it a lot.

//in the car

//baby boy playing

//the view over the wall / love having neighbors

//crazy hair all day erryday

//the only good shot that came out of a bribed photo shoot.  



I'm going to be really honest in this post.

Really, really honest.  But it needs to be said.

I'm tired of people saying how amazing adoptive/foster parents are.

I really am.

And I know there are people that are reading this post that have said this to my family... to your adoptive/fostering friends.  But there is something you must know about this statement.

We do not want to be told over and over that we are amazing.  Because we are not.  Maybe to you taking in children that are not your own is crazy and something you would never ever ever do so you're really amazed at when people do this... so you tell them that they're amazing.  And I thank you for that. Because it really does mean a lot that you would think something like that.  But we are not doing anything amazing.  We are following what God called us to do.  It's hard, rewarding, part of God's plan... but it does not make us amazing.  It doesn't.

Like I said before... I so appreciate you saying that.  I so appreciate that you feel that way.  But, being part of an adoptive family, we get so many comments, looks, stares, sideways glances.... I know you're trying to be kind and sweet and all of that... but we are not the amazing ones.  It's the Lord.  Who adopted us first into His family and gave us such an amazing example.  We are not worthy to be praised for adopting a child.  God should be.

Remember that before you say that to an adoptive/fostering family.



Day Twenty Two... A kitchen.  To have the ability to cook for friends and celebrate what has been done is a gift.

Day Twenty Three... Thanksgiving.  What a lovely holiday.  I'm so glad our country celebrates it.

Day Twenty Four... Dear friends.

Day Twenty Five.... Thanksgiving break.  Because I should be able to be thankful for such a beautiful thing as that twice in one month.  Oh, thanksgiving break.

Day Twenty Six... Christmas music.  (Okay just kidding.  the JB Christmas album is what I meant.  You can unfollow me if you wish.



You know that feeling when you've been needing to hear something like this and then it just reappears at the perfect time?  It just happened to me.

I've really been dreading this week.. coming out of a fantastic Thanksgiving break and whatnot... this week was really stressing me out.  I found this while searching for my Algebra Two notes.  They left me this note six months ago, and I found it again at the most perfect time.  What fabulous friends I have.


I have a friend.... she's really super talented and great with her hands.  She is the most creative person I know, in every way.  I love her to the moon and back... and I want to see this shop grow.  So...

Check out her Etsy shop: Happy Flower Designs.  It would mean the world to me if you would.  


time flies and i don't like it

I'm not scared of much, unless we're talking about bugs or being outside alone in the dark.  But one thing I'm scared of most is time.

Time flies in ways I hate.  It moves on and on whether you like it or not.  It scares me to think of how fast it goes.

Where in the world did time go.  I truly don't understand a bit of it.


we took selfies or something

Oh, my heart.  My.heart.


my lovely thanksgiving

I'm sorry if I'm bombarding you with pictures... but Thanksgiving is my favorite.

(the day before is always my fav too)

And then Treybe ate.

I so love Thanksgiving.


sometimes it doesn't make any sense

why me?  why in the world did God choose me to be transformed by His work through adoption.  why.

it's overwhelming.  none of this life i have makes sense, when i think about the way other people are in ruins.  and i get so caught up in the day to day life that i forget to smile.  i forget to sit back and stare at photos of the past year in complete awe of our God.  what in the world.  how. what?

every day of my life is spent in greed.  in wanting everything in the entire world that i cannot have.  in focusing my entire mind on things i'll never have.  there are nights i have to sit back and say wow.

and it's not just because it's thanksgiving.  i hate that our culture thinks thanksgiving is the one time a year to be thankful.  i try to be thankful every day of my life, i really do.  i really try.  but of course things get in the way.  november has always been my favorite month.  i think part of that reason is because i get to sit back and think of all the ways God has provided.  it doesn't even matter about anything else.  i literally... literally... have every single thing i could ever want.  but november is the one month set aside to sit down and stop.  stop thinking about school and get out of my routine and just remember.

i don't want to be so legalistic about thanksgiving that i forget to really be thankful.  i don't just want to say what i'm thankful for and get it over with.  i want to celebrate.  i want to celebrate the parts of this year where i was full, the parts where i was broken.  i want to celebrate family and life over food with dear friends and family.  i want to celebrate the cross and what God did for us.

my life is everything i could ever want.  and more.  i mean that with my whole heart.  there are dirty fingerprints on the screen i look at.  i wouldn't change it.  there are toys on the floor and dishes in the sink.  there is laundry going on in the other room and dishes being washed in the dishwasher this very moment.  but there is love in this home.  and God's presence.  amidst the mess there is overflowing joy.  and that's all i could ever want for my life.

so please.  before you eat your turkey and before you go out on black friday, sit down in silence and think of all the ways you are blessed.  you'll be surprised.  or in tears.  or questioning why.  but don't ever forget that you are loved and that our God is so good.


happy thanksgiving, friends

I hope you have a lovely day eating turkey and pie and mashed potatoes and gravy and cranberry sauce and stuffing and everything.  I can't decide if I'm more excited for the pie or the mashed potatoes. 

Thank you, Jesus, for life.  For the good parts, for the not so good parts.  Thank you for this year and the things I learned in it.  Thank you for my family and for letting us be a forever family to Trey.  Thank you for adoption.  Thank you for a blog, a space to write about the things close to my heart.  Thank you for Christmas lights and Arizona.  For the way the sun sets and yes, even the snowbirds that don't know how to drive.  Thank you for a bed.  To live in the US.  Veritas Press Scholars Academy.  Africa.  My dear friends.  My brothers.  A computer.  For You.  


day twenty one

Finding a whole set of gorgeous photos I was about to delete.

Love those black eyes and those big lips and his cloud cheeks. 


seven months

What a crazy seven months it has been.  Overwhelming.

Happy seven months, Trey Malachi.

(before he said goodbye to his beautiful har)


"Which country did he come from?"

It's the question we get every single place we go.  People inquiring about where he came from.  The answer is always "the US", and it makes me laugh to see people get less excited after we say that, and not mention an African country.  I'm fine with answering this question, but here's why this question bothers me.

I thought this blog post put it best, "The reason I think it would be better for people not to ask this question is just because it feels like they are screaming “you are different, you don’t fit in” to my child."  

And that's exactly what it is.  It doesn't bother me because they're wondering, it doesn't even bother me that we get asked the same question all the time.  It's simply that they think there is something completely different about Trey that they just have to know about.  There is an obvious difference in skin color, yes, but does the question "Which country did he come from" really have to be asked?  I personally don't see how important it is, or why the world thinks they are entitled to know personal stuff about Trey's birth story, but learning to respond to it is interesting.  

(Also, watch this video and then read this post.)


catching up...

Day seventeen.... Sleep.  No, really.

Day eighteen... Thanksgiving break.  Oh my goodness, yes.

Day nineteen...  Oh my gosh.

Day twenty.... this video:

Oh my heart.


national adoption day

And I'll let you know when adoption stops blessing me completely. 


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