Thursday, May 24, 2012

Something I Bet you Didn't Know

There's something I bet you didn't know about Owen and I. We are adopted. Yep and successfully so! What do you mean you ask? The biological resemblance contained in this blog is to strong to be from adoption? No we were not adopted by our families, but we have been adopted into the family of God. And therefore we are an adoption success story.

Ephesians 1:4-5 says "For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. In love He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with His pleasure and will...

"But when the set time had come, God sent His son, born of a woman, born under the law to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are His sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out 'Abba Father.' So you are no longer a slave; but God's child; and since you are Gods child; God has made you also an heir." Galatians 4:4-6

Owen and I have been on a journey of parenthood in the last 5 years. We've had 3 children and six pregnancies...our days are full but our hearts have been changing and growing in ways we've never anticipated. We are being caught up in the work that God has already been doing and hope through the years to come to only join His work in a more substantial way.

"How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!...Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known...1John 3:1-2

What we will be has not yet been made know...what a promise that is. One thing that Owen and I are slowly seeing is that what we will be are adoptive parents. Our desire to adopt has been growing over the last few years-our desire to act out of obedience has been growing--our deep gratitude for what the Lord has already done for us--for our adoption--is growing--our desire to show a tangible picture of what Christ has done for us is growing. And so, in faith, our family will be growing.

There are so many unknowns--and instead of being afraid of those unknowns, we pray that we can cling to the verse above--What we will be has not yet been made known. "What we will be..." we pray we will be a family to a child who needs a home. A loving mommy and daddy to a baby who needs one. giving a sister & two brothers to a child who maybe alone. a shelter for an orphan. a family who loves. A picture (albeit flawed) of what Christ has done for us.

We do not know what this process is going to look like. Every adoption is different. We don't know how long the process will take. We don't know the emotional costs. But we do know that this is where the Lord is leading us and He will be with us every step of the way. We ask that our friends and family will join us in this journey--praying for the child that the Lord has for us. Praying that our hearts will be turned to and inclined towards this precious life. Praying that logistics would be worked out and most importantly that God would be glorified in all circumstances. This is for God's glory and our good --In everything, God willing, may we always live as a family for others. We will update the blog as appropriate throughout this process. Stay tuned.  

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Judah Turns 3

Hard to believe that my little peanut Judah is 3 years old. He is a lover not a fighter-He is sensitive, creative, loud, funny, car loving, trusting, imaginative, compliant, accommodating, cautious, happy, strong, curious, talkative, and oh so handsome. 
 Fresh. Cannot believe he was that tiny! Cute right out of the gate.

First Birthday--still a tiny peanut 
 
I have to include the NG tube picture, because it's such an amazing reminder of how Judah has absolutely NO indication that he ever had any health issues. So thankful to Jesus for that. 


Judah at his Second Birthday 
Yesterday on his 3rd Birthday--eating a breakfast smothered in powdered sugar and showing off his new Car's cup

Hamming it up with mommy
Wesley celebrating Judah's birthday 
 Both of my older children are born on Owen's grandparents birthdays, Judah and Great Grandma share a birthday and Clara and Grandpa share a birthday. Judah turned 3 and Great Grandma turned 84. We went up to their place to celebrate.

Judah wouldn't sit still for a good shot with Grandma. But this one is special because of how they are interacting--Judah was showing her his "book"


 And not to be left out--our first born. Well, needless to say she was very excited to celebrate her brothers birthday too.
To my first born son. I love you more than words can say. You carry on a name, you have a special place in my heart because I had to work so hard for you for your first 19 months, you have spirit, you have joy, you have a fantastic laugh, i hope your sensitive spirit never changes and that the Lord will mold that into a strong asset for your future. I pray most of all though that you would come to know Jesus Christ and the joy that serving only Him brings. As your name suggests, you truly are celebrated! 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Fire Envy

 We went camping this last weekend and although it did not end up as I anticipated, the Maurer clan sure had a good time. But I am not gonna lie, I had some serious fire envy. There was complete burn restrictions this weekend. Sigh. But we did what you usually do on a camping trip, eat, get dirty, get tired, get dirty, and eat--oh yeah and our kids "used the facilities" more times than I thought humanly possible. Note to self, next time limit the snacks & juice boxes on the camping trip. Lock the coolers.
The drive down there should have been a warning to Owen and I. All three kids had to go #2 during the drive--Judah and Clara were so proud to do it on the side of the road with cars speeding by.  

 After we got settled, I needed to take in some scenery.
 Ahh ruggedly handsome.
 Maybe he will be a future "mountain man" as his daddy was once known.
 And maybe she will be a "diva" as her mama was *once* known.

 
We called it an early night on Friday because there was no fire and our friends were freezing and we were all anxious to get a *good nights sleep*. Yes, the diva in me totally made the picture above black and white so you could not see the circles under my eyes from the *good nights sleep*. After we had a good breakfast on our gas stove, we got ready for a fun day.
 Lets get back to the scenery. We went on a great hike on Saturday down to Bear Canyon Lake.
 The kids hammed it up for the camera. And were sweet with each other.
 Every one rested their feet in the water after the hike. And yes, I made this picture black & white so the man legs would look less umm, hairy.
 The kids & daddy enjoying the lake.
 Taking a break on the hike. It's so fun to do adventures with the kids as they get older and knowing that we are creating life long memories with them!
My snuggle bug. We continued our camping through Saturday night and celebrated Judah's 3rd birthday. Saturday night we got *a good nights sleep*  and Sunday morning packed up and went home. And although I am pretty sure I will NEVER go camping without a fire again, we made the best of the situation and of course the kids had no idea what they were missing. And that's whats most important. A very special thank you to the Chambers for sticking it out with us on Friday night. You made the evening much more bearable!

The Birthday Part Two

 Ahh yes, the long awaited part two birthday post. Yes, the picture above is of Owen and I going through Clean Freak car wash getting my "free birthday wash". It was lovely. Beaming in the glow of my new hair, new earrings, family photos and the hope of a wonderful tasty dinner with my hubby. On the way to the dinner, Owen shares we are going to Becketts Table, one of my very favorite restaurants. I was so excited to eat there--oh the Pork & Spetzel! We got there and walked in the door and I hear cheering--and then all the way across the very large restaurant are 20 of my closest friends, my sister & brother and their spouses. What a surprise. Seriously, I had no idea.
 The twins. Owen arranged for everyone to meet and celebrate our birthday (apparently Alex got a welcome like I did when he walked in too). Not only did everyone come and eat dinner with us, they also prepared very special letters & notes for me per requested by Owen. He knows that special words are one of my most treasured words. Those cards are certainly a treasure!
 The fam. It was great having all of my world all in one place--minus our parents of course. We certainly missed you guys!
 If all of that wasn't enough, as we left the restaurant, Owen mentioned that we were done a little early and he wanted to check out a location where he would be doing a service project in the morning. I was swooning from such a good night (and a glass of wine) so I just said OK whatever. We drove to the location--which was a friends house that happened to be at our party--and I said oh wow, there must be some other party going on in the neighborhood, there were a lot of cars. The lights were on but no one was home in this little head. Seriously! Owen had planned an after party for me at our friends house--the party continued with dessert (three of my favorites) and tons of laughter and fellowship. What a night to remember. I seriously don't ever want to have another birthday.
And just to keep it real folks, Owen left bright and early for his service project on Saturday morning and I was home folding 6 loads of laundry and watching the kids. Back to reality people. *sigh*

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

30th Birthday Celebration Part 1--Yeah it was that good.

Clara has sadly proclaimed to several of my friends that "My mom will never have another birthday again." Truer words have never been said.

Although I am not sad that I am 30. And I would never hinder anyone from celebrating my birth (ha ha ha) I have said that I never want to have another birthday--not because I am getting older, but because it really was the sweetest birthday celebration I've ever experienced. I cannot imagine feeling more loved or celebrated. 

About 30 days before my birthday Owen & the kids presented me with a birthday count down chain with sweet messages from them about why they love me. 

Tuesday the week of my birthday Owen brought home roses. Flaming hot pink roses.

Wednesday it was cupcake day--although Clara and I made them, it was still Owen's idea. 

Thursday Owen took me on a shopping spree...oh how I loath self control. I had a some what unlimited budget and all of my favorite stores at my fingertips. I got all that I needed and told Owen we better get home before I took everything back! I have a hard time spending money on myself. We also had a babysitter that night. It never ceases to amaze me how many stores I can hit without children in tow. 

Friday my sister called at 6:30 (a little early on the birthday, just an FYI) and told me that she would be at my house in an hour and I better get myself cute. Yes, my sister knows the truth, I am usually in my PJ's and "unharnessed" if you get my drift until well after 9 am. She arrived and gave me a card saying that it was my turn to get pampered. I went to H.B.R Salon to get my hair & nails done. Tada! 

I came home & Owen called and said he'd be on his way home in a few minutes...I love having extra time to spend with Owen. We took a nap & had a nice afternoon. Later we went to meet Charity Maurer Photography , my sister & brother in law for a quick family photo shoot. I knew about the shoot because Owen had already bought us all new outfits that matched for the shoot, knowing that would be something that I would be concerned about! Although family photos aren't necessarily in the budget on a regular basis, I LOVE having great photos of the family together, and our blog was in desperate need of a photo face lift. 

The BIGGEST surprise was when we were in the car just before the shoot. Owen reminded the kids that it was "mommy's birthday" and he was saying let's talk about all the things that mommy has received for her birthday...he went through the list as I was rolling my eyes. Then he said something that totally surprised me. "Mommy wont remember any of the things I just talked about..." (and I am thinking, oh yes I will, I remember just about everything thankyouverymuch) "...she wont remember those things because there is one more gift."  Owen pulls out a jewelry box. Heart pounding! A beautiful pair of diamond earrings. Trembling as I put them on--Owen says, "These are for mommy for the next 25 years, and then they will be Clara's on her 30th birthday. Just about the most thoughtful and meaningful thing I've ever heard. Although Clara may not remember being in the car when he gave those to me, I will never forget. 

All the images in the following segment (and the one above) are done by Charity Maurer Photography













 There is much more to tell about this birthday, but it will have to wait for another post. The surprises just kept on coming--and yes, it was that good.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Claraisms

Although I know need to do my birthday post, Clara's been saying some funny things lately so I thought I'd record them.

She speaks in Biblical proportions, all of her time references are "For forty Days and forty nights". At least I know she is hearing that part!

She likes to do "Polerfish". Although it sounds silly, that's Clara's name for Finger Nail Polish. I love that we have little words that only we understand between the two of us.

Today while laying in bed snuggling after nap time she said she had a 'Jesus Dream'. When I asked if she would tell me about it--she said "No, that's between her and Jesus". LOVE it.

Also while laying in bed she is talking to me but not looking at me. She says, "Mom, you know why I am not looking at you?" I said no of course. She said as she's looking at the wedding picture of Owen and I, "well, you look prettier in that picture of your wedding than you do now".   Thank you very much.

Daily she is giving Judah kisses and hugs before nap time and she says in her most enthusiastic voice, "Oh Judah, I just can't wait to marry you. You wanna marry me too right Judah?" She also has a Raggedy Anne doll that she 'dances' with and at the end of every dance there is a dip and a kiss. A romantic from the start.

She is growing up too fast. I am thankful that I am already praying for her prince!