Saturday, December 25, 2010

Saturday, Dec. 25, 2010

May Christ our infant savior give you the joy of the Bethlehem shepherds, the awe of the worshipping sages and the humility and love of the holy family. May you become as little children and the blessing of God our Creator, Redeemer and Giver of life be with you always.


And, a very merry Christmas to you all!

Monday, December 20, 2010


My friend Katie sent me an e-mail recently that contained this prayer. It struck a chord with me and I wanted to share it. It's so simple and yet has such a power over me when I pray it.

God our Father, walk through my house and take away all my worries and illnesses, and please watch over and heal my family. In Jesus' name.


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sunday, Dec. 5, 2010

Christ the sun of righteousness shine upon you and scatter the darkness from before your path, and the blessing of God our Creator, Redeemer and Giver of life be with you always.


Thursday, November 25, 2010

I'm Most Thankful for... two amazing, beautiful daughters. Truly, they are gifts from God.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Sunday, Nov. 14, 2010

We haven't had a new blessing at the end of service for quite some time. I'm assured one is coming soon. In the meantime, the Prayer of Apostleship was one that touched me this week:

God, we know that at its heart every seed holds the mystery of life, waiting only for earth, sun and rain to bring it into the light. So too in the heart of every person life waits, and each new day contains all the beauty and grace we need to live the life to which you call us. Give us faith to see you at work deep in one another's hearts. Give us courage as we wait for new life to push through. Give us joy as we see you at work everywhere.


Friday, October 29, 2010

A Bunch of Good Things

Autumn is my favorite time of year. The colors of nature are magnanimous. Every day the world around us gets more vibrant. Right up until a big storm comes and drowns or blows away the leaves.

Then, there is the produce: pumpkins and gourds and squash (though pumpkins are in the squash family). Again, amazing colors. And unthinkable shapes, like the turban squash and the goose-neck gourds.

In the midst of this, the temperature drop and it's time to make some feel-good food. We got going this week...

First came the pumpkin soup. We got a late start cutting open the Long Island Cheese pumpkin - getting out the insides always takes longer than I think it will. But, it's still so much fun.

While we waited for the soup to cook - in the oven in the pumpkin - I made something I haven't eaten in years: an open-face cheese sandwich. The main reason I haven't eaten this is because I stopped eating cheese about six years ago and then totally gave up dairy two years ago. But, I have discovered that I can enjoy raw sheep's milk cheddar cheese once in a while and still feel fine.

So, I sliced some up, spread some Smart Blend Light on Udi's gluten-free bread, topped it with the cheese and popped these puppies in the toaster oven (also a new thing for us). VOILA, comfort on a plate. It reminded me of when I was much younger. Both my mom and grandma used to make these for us. Mine tasted just a good, too.

The last good thing actually came the day before. Hardware. Installed on our cabinetry. Well, all but eight knobs. But, still, a really good thing.

(In case you're wondering, the kitchen project is on day 110. Yes, really. Maybe next week will be the week. I can only hope, but I never hold my breath.)

First Frost

I didn't stop long enough this morning to get a picture of our first frost. But, I did want to remember our ride to school.

Annalee and Kamila, our neighbor who's also in second grade, were oohing and aaahing, literally, about how they could see their breath as we got into the van. Then, Kamila said,

"It's like invisible fire."

Kids say the darndest things.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Reclamation Feels Good

This may look like an ordinary salad. But, it wasn't to me. It was the first meal that I ate yesterday at my kitchen table in my somewhat remodeled kitchen. I say somewhat because although it's been under construction for 94 days now, it's still not finished.

I started moving back in on Monday afternoon 'cause crying about my situation was getting me nowhere. So, I decided the only thing I could do was steal my kitchen back. But, I don't like to think of it as stealing. I just reclaimed it. And, my living room. And, I feel so liberated.

When I woke up yesterday, it was one of very few days since July 12 (when remodeling began) that I felt no sense of anxiety, angst or frustration wondering when someone was going to come and work or when it was going to be finished. It was a good feeling.

Even the girls were excited when they walked into the kitchen yesterday morning. Annalee gave me a big hug and Zelda started chanting 'kitchen, kitchen.' Even Zelda's Tubby and Bear were hugging each other with excitement.

So, after 93 days of living out of our living room, this is the tarp and canvas that was left when many of the boxes were unpacked and the table moved. Truly, these pictures don't do the grossness of the situation justice.

Even just walking on our old carpeting again felt good. That's how sad it had become living off of tarps and out of boxes.

So, where do we stand on our remodel? Well, that's a very good question. When I last saw the carpenter on Sunday evening after he only put down the kitchen flooring (and left so much undone that was supposed to be done), he said, 'I'll be back sometime this week.' Well, I don't have that day on my calendar. My contractor, who's in Disney World right now, can't seem to get the carpenter to commit to working here and expressed frustration over it and actually e-mailed 'that's why I wanted this finished before I left.' Not because it's dragged on for three months or because his client has been incredibly inconvenienced by how he's handled the project. No. He wanted it done because he's having to deal with his business while he's on his vacation.

I've also asked the contractor repeatedly about the end-date for the project. Today, I finally got a response, if you can call it that. 'My end date is as soon as I can.' Unfortunately, I don't have that date on my calendar either.

For now, though, I have most of my sanity back along with an almost done cool kitchen. I've even come to like the blue tape that I'm using to open the cabinets. It isn't pretty, but it does the job of the hardware...which has been sitting here since Sept. 22, but hasn't been installed yet. Of course.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Sneak Peek

Here's a sneak peak of some new stuff in the still-under-construction (day 89 and counting) kitchen.

I love, LOVE, LOVE the backsplash. It has yet to be grouted and sealed, but I think it's just spectacular. And, it totally makes the whole kitchen.

The small bit of flooring installed so far is perfectly normal, unlike the first round of defective vinyl that we started with.

By this time next week, I hope to be moved back into the kitchen completely, even though we'll still have some hardware to be installed. Keep your fingers crossed that our carpenter is productive this weekend!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Sweet End to Sour Morning

As the first toasty marshmallows were heating up on the fire and I listened to the girls and Ron all talking about how to best roast a marshmallow (though they still don't have anything on my marshmallow roasting skills), I jumped up and said I needed to get some pictures. I had that warm, fuzzy feeling: we were having some quality family time, and it felt so peaceful. We had already roasted hot dogs on the open fire and eaten at the patio table in the cool autumn evening chatting about the girls' activities of the day. Everything just felt right.

Then, I thought about posting and I laughed. 'Cause my last post was about how I had had a perfect mommy day. What's so funny is that since that perfect mom day and tonight, I had had a number of really bad, sad mom days. Because I was not the mom I wanted to be. In fact, I think I would have been horrified if I had seen my mean mommy face in the mirror this morning when I went head-to-head with Annalee over TV, backtalk and general 7-going-on-13 angst.

So, while I like to post the priceless moments on this blog, everyday life is not perfect by any means. But, when I can end my day hearing Annalee say that 'having a sister is the best thing' and I can hear Zelda say 'way to go Daddy-O' for the marshmallow he roasted, despite the nastiness that started my day, I'd say life is pretty priceless. Pricelessly perfect, but with typical ups and downs. And, sometimes it takes the downs to make the ups seem even more special.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Really Good, Really Full Day

Around 4 o'clock today, I had the wonderful realization that I was having a really good day. A good mom day, a good me day and even a good kitchen-construction-getting-done day. But, I was most happy about the mom day.

Of course, when your day starts out with these two looking so hip and happy, what other type of day could I have had?

What really made the day for me was that I felt like I had been present for my girls. And, it has been a long time since I have felt truly present, without thoughts of which merchants I had to track down or contractors to contact about kitchen stuff not getting done. (Day 72 and counting, but today was a day when we saw tremendous activity and progress!) We played with Legos and Play Doh and in the sand box. I even snuck in some education with Zelda, working on patterns and colors and numbers with those Legos.

I couldn't help but remember something I wanted to carry with me this year: do less, be more. I've worked at it, and even been successful at it in the past nine months. But, during the past two months, those efforts have been scarce. So, woo hoo for me!

I even labeled my dill pickles - the first things I canned last week after the cooktop went in - and put them 'up.' I just love doing that!

As I kept patting myself on the back through the late afternoon and evening, the good mom day almost went south as our evening wound down and I was reading with the girls. Here we were reading Little House in the Big Woods with Laura and the family making cheese when Annalee starts asking me about my watch and electricity and the microwave. Hello? Are you even listening to me read? When I called her on it, she refocused enough for me to get to the end of the chapter, at which time I called it quits for the night. Then, Annalee remembered she needed to read a book to me for school. I found myself happily going into Annalee's room, snuggled up with her and let her read to me. Wow, I was so present, still.

And, it was so worth my energy. 'Cause Annalee and I shared a belly laugh when she came up with a new word: pork-cup-pin-ease. Don't you think that's so much more fun to say than porcupine?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Day 65

Today is day 65 of our kitchen remodel. Yes, 65 days and counting for something that my contractor assured me would take 3-4 weeks. And, now you know why I have posted so little in the past few months...

Though I still think we have at least a couple weeks to go, today my ears heard the sweet sound of a working sink in the kitchen. I have stepped on the last pieces of mango, watermelon, parsley, onion and rice in my shower (yes, I've done dishes in the bath tub for 10 weeks!) and for that, I am so thankful!

Yet to be done...the defective kitchen flooring to be replaced by the manufacturer (we hope and are still waiting to get confirmation) and installed; several new cabinets to be remade due to mistakes by the kitchen cabinet rep; new crown molding due to the same person's mistakes; my really cool ceramic tile backsplash installed; bathroom wall tile to be replaced (we moved the door to the bath from the kitchen to the hallway); final round of painting; all new lighting to be installed; and hardware to be installed on the cabinets and drawers. When all that's done, I'll pull the remaining plastic off the appliances and know that it's really over. Oh, I mean done.

I won't go into the details here of this fiasco of a remodel. I'm saving it for a big post on Garden Web. It's a really great forum for kitchen remodeling. I hope to give back some bits of wisdom to anyone coming behind me preparing to remodel their kitchen. Maybe they can learn from our many missteps.

In the meantime, I'll give you a sneak peak of our kitchen:

Do you like the counter? It's the second Cambria quartz counter top we had installed. This second time, we got a really great company to do it right. They actually centered the top over the peninsula, unlike the first company that had a 1" overhang on one side and a 2-3/4" overhang on the other side. Yes, really.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Second Grade

It feels like summer was just beginning, and now Annalee is a big second grader. Today was her first day back to school, a half day. She loved it!

Before we could all take a picture together, the girls had to check out the rolly pollies on the sidewalk.

Annalee and Alaina became friends when they were in the same kindergarten class. They're together again for second grade.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Visit to the County Fair

Remember when we made our list of things to do this summer? Two things on that list were to enter at least one canned good into the DuPage County Fair and to attend the fair. We accomplished both of those this week. (I actually put my entries into the competition at the end of June, but I saw the results of the competition Thursday.) I not only entered one canned good; I entered two canned goods and three photographs.

The results are in. And, I can now say I'm an award-winning canner! My bumbleberry jam came in second place in its class. I was most excited about this, since that jam seems to be the big favorite among my friends and family (yes, Kathy, I know the peach jam also is awesome - maybe I'll enter it next year).

My sweet beets came in first place! But, since they were the only entry in their class, I'm not sure that really counts as a true win. Frankly, I'm not even sure the judges opened the jar since it wasn't necessary to taste them. Better for me if they didn't open it, since I may get the sealed jar back to enjoy. Ron says a win is a win, no matter how it comes. Isn't he sweet?

The last nice surprise was that one of my photo entries - two or more individuals - took fourth place. A lot of photographs were entered in this class, so it was especially nice for my picture to be recognized. We spent a lot of time looking at all the pictures entered. Annalee was especially excited to look at all the pictures. Maybe next year, when she's 8 years old, she'll enter some of her own pictures.

I'm still partial to an individual portrait I submitted, of a Chinese woman in a park. I took it in Yunnan, China.

We hung out with the swines and the goats later. We even got to see judging for the female goats based on their mammaries. All the goats had full udders and looked plenty ready for milking. Interesting, to say the least.

I'll leave you with this happy photo of Annalee coming out of the fun house. Maybe you'll see it entered into next year's fair photo competition.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Joys of Michigan

Last Saturday we not only went blueberry picking, but we spent time with friends at their home on Lake Michigan.

The lake was warmer than I've ever experienced it in my life. We all played in the water a lot; Annalee spent about four hours swimming around. (She slept really well Saturday night, too!)

We collected rocks and built sand piles that somewhat resembled a sand castle. And, Zelda even napped on the beach.

I got to put my Campfire Girl skills to use building a fire in the fire pit for marshmallow roasting. I just love that I can build a fire; I think it's a good skill to have in one's repertoire. That, and being able to roast a perfect marshmallow. Which I can.

I made my own s'mores with gluten- and dairy-free chocolate chip cookies. Wish I could have one right about now!

Zelda and Miss Jane enjoyed some homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream, too.

It was a perfect day from start to finish. A perfect summer day with wonderful friends, wonderful family.

If She's Pickin', She's....

I took the girls blueberry picking last Saturday in Michigan with our friends. It was a beautiful, hot day, and the blueberry bushes were loaded and lush. We ate our way through a couple rows and ended up picking about three pounds of blueberries. Like strawberry picking, Zelda twice dumped her bucket of berries out on the ground - much to my dismay.

Also like strawberry picking, Zelda decided she would squat and 'pee in the bush.' I'm pretty certain I can say this is 'a thing' now. I think she has made a perfectly reasonable association between berry picking and peeing. I know this because she had just gone 15 minutes before at our friends' house when she decided she needed to go in the bushes. Yes, it's definitely a thing.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Skills Revisited

Remember my being so proud of the new skills I taught my daughters? Well, apparently, I failed to teach Zelda how to show discretion in utilizing that skill.

When we came home yesterday after the Wednesday morning movie, the girls went next door to play with our neighbors while I fixed lunch. When I went to get them to come in, I see Zelda with her pants pulled down doing a half-squat - in the middle of the neighbors side yard! Then, the girls all tell me that this was the second time she was doing that (why Annalee didn't bring her home after the first time I'll never know).

So, I picked Zelda up - wet pants and all 'cause she didn't squat over far enough - and brought her in. That's when I began the discussion about when we 'pee in the woods' and when we use indoor plumbing. Let's hope today is a better day...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Skill to Have

A couple weeks ago, I took the girls strawberry and cherry picking at a local orchard - whose name shall remain anonymous for reasons obvious once you read this.

This was Zelda's first time berry picking. I'm not sure she quite got the hang of it. She seemed to enjoy picking a few strawberries - and not even nice ones - throwing them into her container, dumping them on the ground and then stepping on them. Yep, actually, I'm positive she didn't get the hang of it.

Annalee, on the other hand, did really well picking beauties - both strawberries and cherries. She did like to bounce around a bit. While I would stay in one section of a row, Annalee bounced around from section to section, row to row. I'm sure the orchard growers love ADD pickers like her.

Besides fruit picking, I had the opportunity to teach my girls some very basic skills that will carry them through life: how to pee in the bush. Yes, indeedy, I helped them squat and pee. When Annalee said she had to go, I knew it would have taken us too long to get back to the farm entrance where the port-a-potties were. So, I told her she'd need to do it right where we were, amongst the cherry trees. Strangely, I had even thought to pack tissue with me. So, they had the luxury of being able to wipe with the real deal. And, since we have the 'monkey see, monkey do' syndrome in our family, Zelda had to follow suit.

I won't go into the details here, 'cause I'm sure one day the girls would be mortified to know I'm sharing this. But, I'll just say that I was very proud of them.

Then, yesterday, I found out that this lesson had been successful. I was at a park with Zelda when she told me she had to pee. This particular park didn't have a portable john anywhere. While I stood there trying to figure out what to do, Zelda told me she was just going to go on the ground. I stopped her long enough to get her in a secluded spot near a tree. She just laughed and laughed. And, she peed.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Looking Back

As part of Ron's father's day gift, I finally created a file of a whole bunch of our best pictures from the past 10 years or so for him to play on his electronic picture frame. Well, it was actually only about nine years with the exception of boating pictures, 'cause we didn't have a digital camera until about 2001. And, I say finally since I gave Ron the electronic picture frame for Christmas with the promise that I'd make a file as part of the gift. So, now, six months later he finally has his file.

It took me several hours just to pick out the pictures, then another hour sorting through the hundreds I copied into the folder. I deleted extraneous ones and ones that just didn't tell a story.

When Annalee asked me what I was up to I showed her some pictures and told her they were from before her and Zelda, when daddy and I had a different life. What I found most interesting was to click through the pictures in full-screen once they were all cleaned up. I had so many realizations; I thought I'd share them...
  • Ron and I looked a lot younger 10 years ago. Less gray. Fewer wrinkles. More carefree.
  • We had a lot of fun when it was just Ron and me. And, we've had a lot of fun when we were a family of three and now as a family of four.
  • We have done a lot of traveling to a lot of really cool, really beautiful places.
  • We have had a lot of laughs together, with family and with many wonderful friends.
  • We have taken a lot of pictures of each girl doing the same thing, just three years apart.
  • If you run all the pictures of just Annalee together, you see the same happy smile and many of the same poses, shot after shot. Same goes for Zelda. It's really pretty amazing when you see the pictures one after the other.
  • Zelda looks a lot like Annalee did when she was younger. In fact, I did a double-take on a couple pictures trying to figure out which girl it was.
The biggest realization for me was the peace in knowing that in 45 short years, I have lived an amazing life (and that's just from looking at a decade of pictures and remembering the other 30 years). When I finished looking at the pictures, I gave thanks to God for this wonderful life. I felt a sense of contentment in knowing that if my life ends anytime soon, it's been a very full one.

Of course, at 45 I figure I'm only half way to 90, so I still have a long way to go. I have two girls to raise and a husband to grow old with. What a great life this is!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Canning Season

Canning season has opened again, at least as far as fresh produce is concerned. I was in canning heaven the other night canning beets for the first time. I just can't describe the peace that I feel when I'm canning. I often think of my grandma Fran. She was a canner, even though I had no idea what was going on at the time she was doing it, since I was probably five. But, now that I can myself, I have realized what the smell of dill in her kitchen was all about.

The cooking of the beets took longer than I anticipated. I was feeling generous, so I let Annalee stay up and help me. She was very curious to see what it looked like to take off the beet skin. Heck, I was curious since I'd never done it before. I kept reading 'slip the skin off' and 'cook the beets until the skin slips.' And, then, we figured it out. This outer layer on the beets gets soft, cracks and just falls off. It was pretty cool to see and feel. Annalee couldn't wait for me to finish cooking the beets, so I let her sample a beet dipped in the brine. She declared that canning them ourselves is 'so much better than store-bought beets. We should do this all the time!' I continued with my work long after she went to bed - I finally finished around midnight. Maybe I'll start earlier in the day next time.

We had to wait a few days to open our first jar, to let all the flavors gel. OMG, did they gel! Annalee, Zelda and I nearly polished off an entire pint jar within a few minutes tonight.

Too bad that five bunches of beets doesn't go very far. I only managed to get four pints from them. I'm thinking the next time I do beets - in the upcoming few weeks - I'll just do a bushel. And, I'll pack them in quart jars. Hmmmmm, maybe I should think about two bushels....

UPDATE: Annalee came in the office just as I was posting this. She smacked her lips at the picture of the beets and asked,'I can't wait for you to make more because I can't resist beets!'

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Summer Vacation is Underway!

Annalee has been out of school one week now. Those first few days, we really couldn't appreciate the opportunity to sleep in as we had a bunch of appointments and stuff to do that required us getting up early.

This week, Ron is off fishing in Wisconsin, so we've been getting really lazy. The evenings are getting later and the mornings are as well. Zelda slept until nearly 8 this morning!

Last week, to start our summer, I asked Annalee to come up with a list of things that she wanted us to do during the next few months. Being the Type A that I am, I thought it would be nice to have some direction. It also provides us with ideas when that special someone says 'I'm bored!'. Here's our list so far:

Have a fire in the fire pit in the backyard (did that tonight, actually); roast marshmallows, a lot!
Visit six new parks in the area
Go to the Shedd Aquarium
Go to the Art Institute
Go to the Field Musuem
Visit Brookfield Zoo, multiple times
Visit The Flamingo (sculpture) in Chicago
(Annalee) Have a sleepover with Nana and Grandpa
Visit the Morton Arboretum, multiple times
Go to Swedish Days in Geneva (we will, since my dad is exhibiting his turned bowls)
Go to the Wisconsin State Fair
(Jackie) Enter at least one canned good in the DuPage County Fair
Go to the DuPage County Fair
Go to a Kane County Cougars game, hopefully with friends from our first China travel group
Go to the Kane County Flea Market
Visit Grandpa Ronnie and Grandma Betty in North Carolina (sorry, Annalee, this won't happen until the fall holidays)
Pick blueberries - and lots of other fruits for canning
Read at least one book from the Little House on the Prairie Series
Go to a Wednesday morning kids movie at the Tivoli Theater
Attend the Taste of Westmont (with and without the girls)
Teach Annalee the knit stitch
See the Darien July 4th parade
Make good use of our pool passes to Cypress Cove
Hang out in a hammock watching the clouds (we have to buy a new hammock, first)
Spend time with friends, especially friends from our travel groups
Go to at least one farmers' market each week

Long list, huh? Keep in mind that we have all that to attempt along with the complete remodeling of our kitchen, which should happen in early July. Yikes! And, a lot of things on Annalee's wish list require traveling downtown. But, with good planning, I think we can make most of this happen.

Actually, one week in and we've gone strawberry and cherry picking (I'll cover that in another post), been to the Hinsdale Farmers' Market, met four families from our first travel group at a park, and had a camp fire in the back yard and roasted marshmallows.

What I think will be fun is to look back at this list at the end of the summer and see what we did compared to what we thought we wanted to do. Obviously, the best part of our summer will be the time we spend together, no matter what we do. In fact, that's so important to Annalee that she really doesn't want to take any classes. I insisted on continuing swimming, but that's all I could get her to do. She just wants to be with me. And, really, that's ok. She's seven. She doesn't have to take a class every day for hours on end. Summer is about relaxing and enjoying time together. I think we're off to a good start.

End of School

Following in my friend Becky's blog tracks, I thought I'd share pictures of Annalee from the start of first grade along with pictures from her last day of school last week. I can't believe she's a rising second grader already! First grade seems to have flown by, no doubt in part because of our travels to China and the arrival of little Zelda.

So, here's Annalee on her first day of school:

And, here was her last day of first grade:

Just to highlight the changes in our family these past seven months, here's a picture of the girls together on Annalee's last day. Annalee and Zelda wore their matching outfits...

Monday, June 7, 2010

Five Times and Counting

Annalee lost her fifth baby tooth yesterday. At our church picnic. The week before, she lost her fourth tooth. During Memorial Day weekend. These last two were her two front teeth.

Really, I couldn't wait for this second tooth to come out. Last week, after Annalee crashed her mouth into my little nephew's head and her first top front tooth came out, the remaining front tooth was kind of hanging there. With the missing tooth and the hanging tooth both on the top combined with the opening where a new tooth is growing in on the bottom, Annalee basically looked like a snaggle-toothed hillbilly. And, that's what we called her for a week. Now, she looks like a typical first-grader missing her two front teeth (at least three of her friends look like her right now).

With the loss of these last two teeth, Annalee has kept up her losing streak. She seems to lose teeth on occasions. Her first tooth came out on her sixth birthday; the second tooth came out on the last day of kindergarten; the third tooth came out on Easter; and now these last two teeth on Memorial Day weekend and at the church picnic. Isn't that fun?

If only the tooth fairy would come. We think last night she might have had trouble finding the tooth under Annalee's pillow. I mean, she just couldn't have forgotten...could she? Maybe I'll go check now.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sunday, May 30, 2010

A new blessing for the season:

The Wisdom of God
the Love of God
and the Grace of God
strengthen you
to be Christ's hands and heart in this world,
in the name of the Holy Trinity.


Saturday, May 29, 2010

Red Beauties

We planted strawberry plants late in the season last year. They gave us nothing for all the loving care we provided.

But, this year, we were treated to a small but oh-so-tasty bowl of berries. We were amazed at how sweet they were. And, the skin was so tender and easy to bite into.

We can only hope that the remaining flowers will produce some more berries for us before they shut down for the season.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Love Without Boundaries Auction

As you may be aware, our daughter Zelda's foster care in China was supported by Love Without Boundaries (LWB). A family in the Netherlands provided a monthly donation to help the foster family care for Zelda.

Through LWB, we have been able to obtain many photos of Zelda as she grew in her first 20 months of life in China. These photos, along with monthly health/developmental reports are priceless to us. Here's just one of the photos we now have:

For the next five days, LWB is hosting a fund raising auction on e-bay. Please browse their collection of items for sale and consider supporting them. If not through the auction, then maybe you can provide support through a direct donation to Love Without Boundaries.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The blessing at the end of the Easter vigil service, during which Zelda was baptized, was as follows:

God the Creator, by whose glory Christ was raised from the dead, strengthen you to walk with him in his risen life.

God the Redeemer who out of defeat brings hope and new alternatives, bring you new life.

God the Giver of Life make you a new creation, Christ for those to whom Christ shall send you.

And the blessing of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit be with you and remain with you for ever.

If you don't get to view the Priceless Little One site, here are two pictures from that evening: