Thursday, April 16, 2015

Prayers From the Car Seat

God is in the process of healing hearts one day at a time.  My littles continue with weekly visits with their bio mom.  Each week wounds are reopened.  Each week hearts are torn.  Each week my heart bleeds for my children.  
Glimpes of yesterday and expressions of misguided hope presented on the way to school this morning.  Therapy from the driver's seat was limited as the drive was short.  I answered questions the best that I could, but I knew that the answers were not grasped.  
Then she prayed.  
My littlest girl sat behind me in the bus.  I could not see her, but her sweet voice rose with the simple question, "Can I pray."
When will I learn?  Of course, that is the answer to all this craziness.  God is slowly healing her heart.  It will take a lifetime, but he will heal.  If only momentarily, she grasped that God was the one to whom she could talk.  He was the one who had it all together, always.  
Interestingly, she spoke with experessions of praise and thanks.  It would have been easy for her to set her demands.  She is a normal kid in that her want list is long.  Yet, God to her was someone who had already blessed her in so many ways.  She chose to focus on today, on what she had, not what was missing.  She knew that God could help her with her day.  In her moments of sweetness, she was trusting him with her tomorrow as well.  
We are still going to have craziness today to be sure.  My kids will lose it.  I will lose it.  

Thank you, God, for holding it all together.  

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Summer 2015 Ideas

The rain is still coming down on a chilly spring Tuesday, and I am brainstorming for our summer fun.    That is normal for moms, right?  Last summer was the first time I planned Schroll Camp.  Honestly, it was more for my survival than for the kids.  Pinterest is a double edged sword for moms though.  If you are not careful, you can plan yourself straight into insanity.  My role as mom is not to be my kids' cruise director.  Neither do I have an unlimited budget.  Who does?  That said, I do have children who thrive on a plan, a structure.  They have difficulty imagining.   Their young lives have had to deal with things beyond their age.  Structuring play is a good thing for them.  Therefore, it is a good thing for me.

I did not accomplish all that was on my plan last summer, but that was fine with me.   We did well.  With a plan set, I knew what the go to ideas were for the week.  I found myself stuggling less to come up with ideas since I had already worked out the overall plan.  The kids found it exciting each week as the theme changed.

So, here are some ideas that may or may not work.  I will not get to all of them, and I am far from setting up the summer.  I would love to hear what ideas have worked for you.  What are some inexpensive things you have done with your kids that you would definitely do again?

Shore trips weekly
Philadelphia walking tour
Basement redo
Mexican week
Kindness week
Craft week
Tech free day/week
Company at least twice a month
Camp weeks for older kids
Family hikes - waterfalls
Water week
Backyard movie with popcorn
Picnics
Make paper boats and race them
Fly kites in Vally Forge
Visit farm/farmers market
Photography (learn a new skill, scavenger hunts, photo books)




Let me know what you think.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Maddie's Words on Spring

Flowers in the Spring

Flowers in the spring
Have a lovely song to sing.
Their petals growing tall and wide,
It's hard to put their song aside.
The stem is the chorus.
The petals are the verses.
People carry flowers' song in their pockets
The song is really magic,
Stored in the ground,
And the bugs are the one who spread the sound
When the sun shines bright
And the flowers come in sight

The magic of the song is revealed.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Gratitude

I have been blessed with a supportive husband for almost 25 years.
He is a loving father to all my kids even when they are unlovable.
There is hope of spring
Birthday plans can make my kids smile.
My breakfast consisted of oatmeal with craisins and brown sugar served in a slightly chipped mug decorated with blue flowers.
Texting allows me to check in with Aly who is on her senior trip.
Aly's hand is not broken.
Long hugs feel comforting.
I have the privilege to eat lunch with my mom most every day.
Laura is coming home for Easter.
My pastor is preaching from Daniel.
I gave away ten bags of clothes.
My basement has stayed somewhat cleaned up for almost two weeks.



Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Judicious Words

The heart of the wise makes his speech judicious and adds persuasiveness to his lips. (‭Proverbs‬ ‭16‬:‭23‬ ESV)

Okay, moms, how many feel like a judge today?  How about a mediator?  Maybe you feel like you just have to sweet talk your kids into everything.   This is me, well, every day.  Having a large crew means that the journey is not conflict free.  Ever.  
As I read these words, God spoke peace again.
Resolving conflict begins in the heart.  It begins with wisdom, thinking God's way.  I want it to go my way.  You know, I am the boss, right?  Yet, in God's perfect words, he reminds me that judiciousness, solving problems practically, means that it is not about me.  It is about my heart focusing on what God wants and thinks.  It is then that my words can persuade to do right.  It is not the decibal of my words or the intensity of my glare.  

My words can make a difference (though I do feel as though I talk to the wall often :).  God is not asking me to do the impossible.  He has shown me quite clearly that when I settle on Him, rest in his truth, allow Him to change my heart, then my words are effective.

Monday, March 23, 2015

The Color of our Skin

We chose adoption.  Truthfully, God did.  
The color of our children's skin made no difference.  If we had been led to Africa we would be fairly confident that the children who would become our family would have ebony black skin and curly black hair.  If God had led us to Asia, our children's skin would have a gorgeous olive tone, and their hair would be strait black.  If we had traveled to South America, our kids' skin would be creamy brown.
We would be fairly certain of these facts.
But God did not lead us out of  the country, or even our county for that matter.  
We were asked at the beginning of our journey what parameters we were placing on what child we would accept.  The funny thing is that we thought we wanted two school aged children.  There was nothing else limiting our decision.  We were then given a 9mo., a 19mo., and a year later a new born, and then another year later a school aged boy.  Not really within our parameters, but that was perfectly fine.
We have a biracial familly and that is wonderfully perfect as well.  
Adopting domestically has its unique challenges as does foreign adoption.  There are many hurting families within 30 miles of our home.  Race makes no difference.  Our adopted children are birth siblings and even within that they are not all the same race.  
Biracial families sadly have challenges to overcome because there are stupid people in the world.  I anticipate dealing with questions, with hurt hearts, and strange words.  

I am so blessed and thankful that God has put all my children in our home.  Black, white, or purple, there is no difference.  I am enjoying the journey as I watch how God has created each of my kids uniquely.  Each of us is precious.  I pray that each of us will sink that treasure deep in the crevaces of our heart.  That God-gift can never be stolen.  

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Absent Gratitude

Sunshine, heat, our bus, family, mom, dad, a bed, food, rainbows, clouds:  my kids produced this list of gratefulness as we headed to school this morning. One child could not contribute.  Interestingly, he is the one who has had the most problems in the last two days.  Life is giving him much to process.  I wish I knew how to break in and hug his heart.  Yes, we have had attitude.  Yes, we have had behavior and words which have consequences.   I pray as he goes through his day, the Holy Spirit will continue to prick his soul showing him even a glimpse of gratefulness.  Maybe, I will see a smile when he comes home today.