Tuesday, April 29, 2008


I can't help singing the old ketchup commercial (rather, the old Carly Simon song):

An-ti-ci-pa-tion, an-ti-ci-pa-tion
Is makin' me late
Is keepin' me wa-a-a-a-a-aitin'

Tick-Tock - Tick-Tock - Tick-Tock

Breathe in - Breathe out

Check the email.

...How about now?

Tick-Tock - Tick-Tock - Tick-Tock

Breathe in - Breathe out

Check the email again.

...And so it goes.

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't distracted - highly distracted. I've been trying to keep busy and do things to take my mind off the anticipated email.

Sometimes I can go for moments without the urge to check. :-)

This is a good anticipation. In the past, during these times of waiting for a particular something, I've had hope mingled with fear, dread, and uncertainty. This time the wait is all good. I can't wait to call for plane tickets and hotel rooms. I can't wait to hold my Cupcake again. I can't wait to see the beautiful people and scenery of Guatemala. I can't wait to walk into that embassy and promise my love for her. I can't wait to feel the plane take off from La Aurora airport with my daughter at my side. I can't wait to walk through the front door as a family of 6.

Something happened today to make this wait a little sweeter...

The kids and I went to a picnic. I put Daddy on "email duty", grabbed my cell phone and headed out the door. This was an end of year picnic for a homeschool group that my kids participate in. My two best friends are also part of this group. Well, near the end of the day, everyone starts moving toward the table where I was sitting. All of a sudden, one of my friends says, "Mamita, we have something for you - from all of us." Everyone starts clapping. For me? They had taken up a collection for us as a way of celebrating with us! They all signed a card for us wishing us well. I started crying right there. That touched my heart deeply. Some of the folks, we know well, but others I just met today. It was humbling and encouraging that so many people would care and would want to come along side us. Several of the adoptive moms came up afterward and shared their stories and cheered me on.

So, thank you to all for your kindness and generosity. And K and D, I love you guys with all my heart. What would I do without you?

We did receive an email today from our agency. Cupcake went to the US Embassy yesterday for her required medical exam. YEAH! One step closer!

Blessings to you,

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Happy 16th Big Guy!

Today, TE turned 16. Where does the time go? It seems like only yesterday I was anxiously anticipating the arrival of my firstborn. Now, college is just around the corner. YIKES!

He hates having his picture taken. Here are some of his goofball shots:

Here's a picture of my guitar hero:

He is now the owner of the coolest camera in the family. I may have to borrow it. :-)

TE, you know we love you and are so proud of you. May God continue to work in your life as you become the man He has created you to be. Happy Birthday, my son!

Blessings to you,

Birth Certificate and Passport!!!

Yesterday was a marathon for me. Let's just say, we left home at 8:25, ran hither and yon, and got home at 3:10. I had exactly 1 hour to mow as much lawn as possible. I ran in the house at 4:10, checked the email (of course :-)), and found two emails from our agency. Both emails said, "We're sorry. We still have not been able to find out any more information on your case." I jumped up from the computer to run out the door to pick up TE from classs. My cell phone is ringing...

It's our agency!!!!

She's gushing the words out..."I just got off the phone with R__! He has your Birth Certificate and Passport and he's going to submit you to the Embassy tomorrow!" "You should be able to travel to pick up Cupcake within two weeks! (Insert many thank-yous, congratulations, ya-hoos and oh-my-words here!)

The phone was not even hung up yet and my land-line phone was ringing! Guess who?

It was Daddy S! He called at the exact moment I wanted to tell him the news! I practically shouted the news to him and told him I'd call him back on my cell, because now I was really late to pick up TE - and I had to get home on time, because the crazy marathon day was not over...

...I won't mention the part about hitting the garage with my mirror as I was backing out while talking...

...Well, I got home at 8:30 last night, exhausted and happy. Very happy!

Today, my heart is singing praises to the Creator - the One who put this desire into our hearts, the One who has orchestrated this entire journey, the One who loves Cupcake more than we'll ever know. He deserves all the praise. Thank you, Jesus.

Blessings to you,

Monday, April 21, 2008

A Different Kind of TAG

I was tagged by Katie. So here goes:

i am : a believer in Jesus Christ

i think: I'm losing my mind...somedays :-)


i want: my kids to be friends with each other when they grow up

i have : a very old van

i wish: I had a newer van

i hate: the fact that some kids will be left behind in Guatemala without families

i miss: my Little Cupcake and Guatemala

i fear: typos and lost files

i feel: excited and nervous about Cupcake's homecoming

I hear : kids jumping on the trampoline

i smell: Bath and Body Works Japanese Cherry Blossom Soap

i crave: chocolate

i search: for an update from Guatemala

i wonder: where God will take us next

i regret: nothing

i love: my husband and kids

i ache: for people who are hurting

i care: about their needs

i always : have dessert (but not for breakfast tee hee hee :-D)

i am not: a neat freak

i believe: in the power of my GOD

i dance: whenever "YMCA" plays. I can't help it. :-)

i sing: in the car with my praise and worship music - with the windows up :-)

i cry: at any moment. But before adoption -- once every 7 years

i don’t always: clean the bathrooms when they need it

i fight: rarely - I hate conflict

i write: for therapy :-)

i win: the award for the most kid-friendly house in the neighborhood

i lose: the Tigger award - I'm pretty mellow

i never: drink, cuss, or chew and never run with boys who do :-)

i confuse: the names of my kids as I'm calling them

i listen: to Christian music - Chris Tomlin, Casting Crowns, Third Day, Newsboys

i can usually be found: running kids in the old van, teaching kids at home, or shopping

i am scared: of head-on collisions and driving near tractor-trailers

i need: my quiet time, morning silence and a little caffiene :-)

i am happy about: being OUT of PGN and on our way to bringing Cupcake home!

i think : God is about to bless our socks off!

So, I tag Lindsey, ManyBlessings, and Mommy

Blessings to you,

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Earthquake...

...was all my fault.

It was all that jumping up and down on Monday with our good news. I must've knocked something loose.

Sorry about that.

My bad. ;-)


Friday, April 18, 2008

Favorite Foto Friday

Two years ago today, April 18, 2006, we committed our lives to bringing home the precious little one in this photograph. Today, we stand on the mountain. Looking out, we can see the promised land. God will complete what He has begun. Cupcake will be coming home soon.

Thank you, Lord, for carrying us and for working so many miracles.

Movers and Shakers

That's my man! My hero, my friend, my partner, my husband. (He's the one in the middle.)

Yesterday, Daddy came home from work all smiles. Daddy is an Engineering Manager for a large company. He was busy working at his desk. Up walk 3 men - movers and shakers...his boss, the Chief Engineer of St. Louis operations, and the head of Electrical Engineering in St. Louis. He was recipient of the Chief Engineer Award. They only give out one of these per month for all of St. Louis Operations (thousands of employees). So, I guess you could say he got the "Employee of the Month" award.

It's nice to be recognized and honored for what you do. Daddy does everything he does with excellence. He works hard. He does things right. And he does it all with honor and integrity. I'm so proud of him.

And speaking of movers and shakers....

We felt the earthquake! That is the first time I've ever felt one, that I can remember. The windows were rattling and the bed was shaking. The wild thing is: it woke up our kids. All three of these kids could sleep through a tornado...I kid you not. We've had wild thunderstorms that they were completely oblivious to. A little rattling and shaking and all three were up in a heartbeat, adrenaline pumping. I'm thinking about buying some "earthquake in a can" so I can get them up for school in the morning. :-)

Blessings to you,

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

We're OUT! OUT! OUT!!!!!

Did you hear the scream?

Did you feel the earth shake?

That was me...jumping up and down and whooping! :-D

We got the email yesterday, April 14th! Our agency coordinator is down in Guatemala right now. She went with our facilitator to PGN to check on our file. Low and behold, it was waiting for them at the OUT window! She saw the signature with her own eyes! It's really true!

Legally, Cupcake is ours! That feels SO GOOD!

From here on out, we're just working to get her home.

The next step is to get her a new birth certificate with our names as parents. It looks like we'll hit a slight delay (a couple of weeks) with that, since her hometown recently changed over to a new system. What used to take 1-2 days now seems to be taking 20-30. But that's okay, because there's a light at the end of this tunnel. :-)

The last 4 weeks have been incredibly stressful - not knowing why they were holding on to our file and not being able to get any information. But now we're smiling, our hearts are light, and we have been refreshed. Ahhhh...

Blessings to you,

Thursday, April 10, 2008

For My Friend

by Third Day

Well I won't pretend to know what you're thinking
And I can't begin to know what you're going through
And I won't deny the pain that you're feeling
But I'm gonna try and give a little hope to you
Just remember what I told you
There's so much you're living for

There's a light at the end of this tunnel
There's a light at the end of this tunnel for you
For you
There's a light at the end of this tunnel
Shining bright at the end of this tunnel for you
For you
So keep holding on

You got your disappointments and sorrows
You ought to share the weight of that load with me
Then you will find that the light of tomorrow
Well it brings new life for your eyes to see
So remember what i told you
There's so much your living for

There's a light at the end of this tunnel
There's a light at the end of this tunnel for you
For you
There's a light at the end of this tunnel
Shining bright at the end of this tunnel for you
For you
So keep holding on
Keep holding on

So remember what i told you
There's so much you're living for

There's a light at the end of this tunnel
There's a light at the end of this tunnel for you
For you yeah
There's a light at the end of this tunnel
Shining bright at the end of this tunnel for you
For you yeah
There's a light at the end of this tunnel ooh
For you, for you yeah
Shining bright at the end of this tunnel
For you, for you
So keep holding on
Keep holding on
Keep holding on now

You got your disappointments and sorrows
I'm gonna try and give a little hope to you

I am asking you all to pray for my friend, D___ and her husband, E___. They have been in the process to adopt N___ from Guatemala for almost 3 years. There is no specific reason for the holdup. Their case has been investigated to death and the birthmother interviewed on countless occasions. Everything has been found to be in order. Now they just need PGN to approve them.

Four weeks ago, both of our files were sitting on the famous "2nd Reviewer's Desk". While we got the call that said we had been approved, she got the call that they had been rejected for 3 "errors". They were just resubmitted to PGN today.

I had hoped that we could time things just right, so that we could go pick up our precious kids at the same time. You see, I've never met D___, but I had the honor and privilege of meeting N___ on our last visit trip. Isn't she the most beautiful, precious, little doll you've ever seen!

D___ is my internet friend. She has been such a blessing to so many people. She is fluent in both Spanish and English, so she calls down to Guatemala for people and translates letters. But more than that, she has always been an encouragement to those around her. Even in her darkest moments, she has cheered others on. I can't even begin to tell you what a blessing she has been to me.

But she is weary and tired. And her daughter's 3rd birthday is coming up soon. Please join me in praying N___ home....

Heavenly Father,
You are the Light of the world. You are the Giver of dreams. You are the Hope in our hearts. You have special love for the weak and fatherless. You are close to the broken-hearted. So, Father, I lift up D___ and E___ to You. You gave them this desire and put this hope in their hearts. Would You please shower them with Your love and bring their little daughter home before her 3rd birthday? Please cause all things to work together so that N___ might have the special birthday gift of her permanent family. Give D___ and E___ the strength and encouragement to get up and face each day. Watch over N___ and prepare her heart to be loved by this dear couple. We pray all this in the precious name of Jesus Christ, the Giver of life and the Lover of our souls. Amen.
Blessings to you,

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Boot Camp

This past weekend, Daddy and the boys went on a special camping trip. The Boy Scout troop spent the weekend at Fort Leonard Wood. They did lots of army stuff, got a great workout, had a ton of fun, and came home pooped and sunburned.

Now, before you freak out...these are NOT real guns! They are only trainers. They are the same look, feel, and weight of a real M-16, but they are NOT REAL.

The boys lived a day in the life of a soldier. It was a terrific learning experience for them.

They were up at the crack of dawn for calisthenics...

No soldier can resist the MREs (Meals - Ready to Eat). They ate just what our soldiers eat out in the field. Mmm, Mmm GOOD!...

They learned to "army crawl" with their guns in tow...

They learned hand-to-hand combat methods and first aid.

They also had the privilege of using the night-vision goggles. How cool is that?!

I think they (and I) have a new appreciation for the troops that are standing guard over our great country.

If you are or ever have served our nation in the military...Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

May God bless and protect you as you protect us.

Blessings to you,

Friday, April 4, 2008

A Little Fun to Lighten Up theTension Around Here...

ManyBlessings, over at A Life Outside the Box, has sort-of tagged my kids. Well, really, she said, "if you haven't done it yet and want to play along, consider yourself tagged! :)" So here goes, from oldest to youngest, I'll just name 2 random facts about each, instead of 10...


1. TE is and has always been a fine-motor skill kid. He has been doing papercraft since about 3rd grade. He started with origami. He now does these fabulous paper models that involved card stock, an exacto knife, glue, and LOTS of patience. Take a look at these...everything you see is made of paper...

2. TE once had a drawing published in Highlights magazine.


1. Sunshine is a mega-Lego-maniac. He especially likes Star Wars Legos. We found a video of him when he was just 3. We asked him what he wanted for Christmas. His answer: "a Siff Infiwtwaitew" (Translation: a Sith Infiltrator - a Star Wars Lego) And he could build it, too. Here is a glimpse into his room...don't even ask about the sorting system...

2. Sunshine is deathly allergic to peanuts. We carry the Epi-Pen everywhere we go. I'm like the food-nazi at potlucks.


1. Sugar loves chihuahuas. She's obsessed. I don't know why.

2. Sugar was the one who first asked us for a sister. She's not so sure it was a good idea, but she is pretty excited that Cupcake will soon be home.


1. Cupcake loves nice-smelling things. She loves to have lotion rubbed on her feet. She even loves the smell of Purell. We use it before every meal in Guatemala. She's going to wonder what happened to the Purell when we get home. We may have to keep using it before meals, just for tradition.

2. Cupcake likes to eat almost everything, except pickles. She especially loves butter - just butter. She licks it off the bread.

I'm not tagging anyone, but if you want to play, I'd love to hear about your kids.

Blessings to you,

Thursday, April 3, 2008

A Non-Update

Tuesday afternoon, I finally got through to PGN. I nearly have a repetitive motion thumb injury from dialing the number so many times. I gave her the case number, and I was expecting her to tell me we had been approved and were waiting to exit. Then I was going to ask her what the hold-up could be.

Instead...she said we were on the 2nd reviewer's desk. That's two steps backward from where I thought we were! Okay... so I reason that the computer system has not yet been updated. That does happen pretty often. So, I can't really ask what the hold-up is. I politely say thank-you and good-bye. I calmly call Daddy S to tell him that I have no information to share, since the computers don't reflect reality yet, then shoot an email to our agency. Then I drive TE to class and then on to Wal-Mart.

Too much time in the car is a bad thing when your imagination is running wild.

By the time I reached Wal-Mart, I was a basket case. I walked through the store in a nauseous daze. I was literally sick to my stomach. You cannot imagine all the scenarios that ran through my feeble mind. (Well, some of you might be able to...)

Anyway, by the time I got home, there was a cheery email from our agency reassuring me that our facilitator double-checked and promised we were approved. The computers at PGN were just not up-to-date.

On Monday, he picked up a file for a couple that is about 5 days ahead of us, so he is hoping it will be at the window tomorrow (Friday).

I'm back to being somewhat emotionally stable. I think I can even wait until Monday if I need to. But don't hold me to that. ;-D