...Do you take your SHOES for granted?

I can guarantee, after you watch this... YOU WON'T!!!
**Please NOTE it is graphic and HEART BREAKING**

I am SO thankful for My friend, I met in this AWESOME BLOGGY world, who lives just down the street from me...  Yep, can you believe that - Not Tennessee or TEXAS or Georgia... :) he he! :) But right down the street from meeeee! :) ...you can visit her HERE or HERE!
...introduced me to...

Sole HOPE was a vision God gave Asher Collie in 2010. This VIDEO detailing the plight of many in Africa forever changed her vision of the world.  The need the help these widows and orphans grew stronger and stronger until she had to do something about it.

What is Sole Hope's PURPOSE:
Sole Hope exists to provide jobs for widowed women in Africa, and puts shoes on the feet of orphans. Close-toed shoes are an essential part of keeping life threatening diseases out of children's feet. We teach women who need work how to makes shoes. We pay them an appropriate wage and give the shoes to the children of their city who have been orphaned due to various reasons.

 My sweet friend with a BIG OLE ♥ HEART ♥ and PASSION to help the widows and orphans got a totally COOOOOOL group of ladies involved!  and... we met and began MAKING some shoes from a ton of SAMPLE fabric from an Upholstery shop.  We had patterns that Sole Hope Provided and we were all ready to conquer the pile of fabric and  just get These shoes started for the finished assembly and the long trip they will take to be on the feet of the Orphans and Widows in Ndola, Zambia and Bombo, Ugando.  

This was an AMAZING opportunity to be able to be a TEENY TINY part of what SOUL HOPE is all about! ...It gave this ol SOUL HOPE that there is HELP... if more people reached out... what a HUGE - HUMONGOUS Difference we can make.  

Thanks to my dear friend for sharing SOLE HOPE with me.  I will be praying for this AMAZING Ministry to thrive and continue to put shoes on the feet of those who need them the most!

PSALM 119:105 
Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

JOHN 13:17
Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.  I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.  Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.  Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.

If you want to support SOLE HOPE. You can visit them 
right HERE!!!

GOD is in the Giveaways!!

Sooooo... this week has been a little HARDer than others....  Like LIFE is sometimes.... a little miscommunication here, a little super duper bad economy for construction here, a trip to urgent care with Kinz here...

(no broken bones - it's allll good),  but just an overall kind of a Big Time BUMMER of a Weeeeeek!

Thank you GOD for...

I can't even believe I won another BLOG GIVEAWAY! ♥ I can't even tell you what AMAZING timing it was... It instantly picked me right up and put a BIG OLE GIANT GRIN on my face!

Pleeeease check out Learning to Be Blog right HERE!
Check out SWEET BEE right HERE!

These BLOCKS are just so ADORABLE - AND I would LOVE to put our daughters name on the blocks - but since we don't know it yet... It will be FUN to get one with the word "LOVE" on it... for her ROOM! - GOOODNESS KNOWS we ALREADY LOVE HER ♥ BIG TIME!

Loooking forward to ending the week on another AMAZING high 
♪ ♫ NOTE ♪ ♫ with my dear friend tomorrow! ♥

WOWIE! I WON! and... These are a few of my FAAAAVORITE Things...

HOLY SMOKES!!! Still stuck with my jaw wide open in shock that I WON something!! ha ha! Growing up, it was ALWAYS my sister winning the Cakes at the Cakewalk at the school carnival or the countless coloring contests we entered at the grocery stores.. ...I do try though...
...EVERYDAY my lil 12 year old and I try to win (at this point ANYTHING - we don't even care what it is :)) on the radio station! I am SERIOUSLY convinced it has GOT to be the HARDEST thing to do... EVER!  Both of us will TOTALLY FREEEEAK out if we are caller 106 one of these days!!! (I will be sure to let ya'll know) :)

BUT.... I did WIN a TOTALLY Killer Blog GIVEAWAY! 
...If you haven't checked out

You TOTALLY need to! She's a  SUPER,  DUPER Talented Adoptive Momma & Grandma of 2 Amazing Guys and 2 Beautiful Bio Girls. She created THIS...
I can't WAIT to put it on my daughters lil arm and tell her how much I LOVE her!  
Hmmm.. but, I may have to purchase ONE more... for her SISTER!! :) ♥♥

Okay...Sooooo... Because I TOTALLY LOVE  ♥ LOVE the Sound of Music - I don't know if it goes waaaaaaaaaaaay back to my childhood - when we watched this movie every year around Christmas time - but it just makes me SMILE! :)

...and TOTALLY leads into a few things I got with a little of my Christmas money this year! :)

...and THEEeeeeeeeeeeese are a FEW of MY Faaaaaaaaavorite Things...

...okay so I spent a little of Erik's Christmas Money tooo (hee hee) Cuz I knew he would just LOVE it if I got him the Mustard colored Feeding the Orphans T.

I LOVE THEM... and I LOVE feedingtheorphans.com!

...I LOVE ♥ LOVE me some HEADBANDS... I thought maybe I would put these CUTE lil POPPIES away and save them for my SWEEETIES, except I totally  like them tooo! :)  ...but, I  promise to share with all the little girlies in our house. :)  Thanks LAUREN, these are SO FUN!
You can check them out for yourself at poppielane.com

 Here I am - sporting my lil POPPIE Head band! LOVE IT! :) 

So the last thing I got with Christmas MOOOLAH was this...

 I have been looking at... and LOVIN' it MUCH ♥ - and FINALLY decided to get it! SO Excited to see it come in the mail and even MORE excited that it is helping to bring sweet Caroline Faith HOME! If you haven't checked out Alison's sweeeet BLOG - just visit her  HERE.  If I could VOTE for a Mrs. Congeniality in this CRAZY, AMAZING BLOG world - I would TOTALLY voter for her! ♥  ONE SWEEEEEET CHICKA and ONE SUPER COOOOOOOL Bracelet! :) THANKS ALISON!

and I had ordered this shirt a while ago from Amy at embraced in love and I got it in the mail the other day... OKAY... so, you can see it has been TOTALLY Fun going to the mailbox these days!! :)  I LOVE this shirt! - Aaaaaaaaand... it IS turning my life around... even if we are still just WAITING to see our sweet little girls. They are in our hearts and in our minds daily!  We are praying for them, their family, their situation, their sweet little lives and what they could possibly be experiencing right now. I MISS them and LOVE them.
I can't wait to see their adorable little faces! 


Niki, Janice, Tarah, Megan and Me

♥ LOVE ♥ these girlies! I am SO, SUPER blessed to have them in my life! 
...God placed this INCREDIBLE idea of adopting on Erik's Big OLE heart... He shared it with me, we talked about it, prayed about it, and prayed about it and prayed about it... and God put it on my heart as well... 

...I have to say, I really didn't know anyone who had adopted, I didn't have any idea of what to expect, the ups and downs, ins and outs - NOTHING - other than I would have to learn as I go and rely on the MAN UPSTAIRS for my strength and support!

...I am still relying on HIM (BIG TIME), but I am SO thankful He put some AMAZING people in my life to share this journey with. I enjoy supporting, loving, encouraging them as much as I LOVE their support.  

...I TOTALLY didn't realize what an AMAZING adoption community there is!  I have met some INCREDIBLE people through the AGCI List Serve, Blogging, Facebook... It is REALLY the coolest thing EVER, how SO, SO many people come together to BE THERE for each other during the struggles, to answer questions, to CELEBRATE with ya- and most people have NEVER EVER even met in REAL life - but LIFT each other up and encourage each other - every step of the way! 

I thought I was gonna feel ALL ALONE, SCARED, COMPLETELY CLUELESS, OFF MY ROCKER :) (and sometimes i do) but, I know that there is this GREAT BIG HUGE Adoption Community who is right there ready to help ya, encourage ya, support ya... LOVE ya!!

Sitting on CLOUD #9

Got an email yesterday from AGCI - with some PRETTY COOL NEWS!  

...We were INSTANTLY on CLOUD 9 when we got our WAITLIST Number for SISTERS (0-4 Years Old)!
Yep, you guessed it!!! 


A Referral call is right around the corner...

WE ALSO Got our little GIRL Waitlist Number - which was equally as exciting... SINCE... We are now in our TEENS!!
...and here is our NEW and IMPROVED number waiting for our daughter 
(0-2 years old)

To continue celebrating on top of THIS already SUPER, DUPER 
TODAY is..


መልካም ገና
Melkam Gena!

Merry Christmas to our daughter(s) who we are SO excited to have HOME, in our arms!!  We will be SO excited to be able to CELEBRATE this day with her NEXT YEAR! ♥   I am going to have to do some research on what is traditionally done in Ethiopia and make this a VERY special day for her!

Into the Streets of CHILE...

Madison has a BIG servants heart and a PASSION for Missions and I ♥ LOVE IT ♥!  ...When the STUDENT Ministries at Overlake Christian Church (OCC) mentioned a CHILE MISSION TRIP! She was ON BOARD!

She thought it would be FUN to create a little bit of a different letter to send out to her friends and family for prayer and support.  So, she visited TINY PRINTS and made a this card....

on the back of her card it says:


This year I am a sophomore and I have been going to Overlake Christian Church (OCC) and LOVE getting involved in Group Life and their Youth Ministries.  An incredible opportunity arose to serve at-risk children living on the street in Santiago, Chile! I've developed a passion and desire to serve in this capacity.  After one mission trip to Guatemala and 2 trips to Kenya, I feel like am prepared to serve whole-heartedly, however I'm needed in Chili.  We will be doing drop-in programs during the afternoons that include games, stories, crafts, and music and assisting in the construction of an outreach preschool program.  Most importantly we plan to give them HOPE by sharing JESUS CHRIST with them!

I would LOVE to have you partner with me on this AMAZING opportunity to serve in Chile by PRAYER or with your financial gifts.  I will feel INCREDIBLY blessed to receive either of them! ♥  The total amount I am trying to raise is $1,100.00.  This amount includes travel expenses, food, lodging, and ministry materials...

Thanks in advance, for you LOVE and SUPPORT ,


 We helped Madison with her Guatemala mission trip when she was going into 7th grade and of course, took her with us to Kenya to serve there in 2008 and 2009!  But we told her this is her responsibility this time. To send out her letters, etc, attend all the training meetings, organize donations, fund raise etc... We are TOTALLY excited that she has such a BIG OLE HEART for missions and we are even more excited that she is taking the initiative, with GOD's Help, to participate in this amazing opportunity!

It is SO FUN to watch her grow up, mature, see what her priorities are, passions are... I wish I would have had the opportunity to be involved in such COOOOOOOOl Student Ministries.  It is refreshing knowing she can go to a group life meeting and have contact with other leaders who hold her accountable, teach her, help her, listen to her, pray for her!!!

I am BLESSED to be able to be her MOMMY - that's FOR SURE! ...and I'm excited about her trip to Chile and to hear how God uses her there!!   SHINE ON SISTAHHH! ♥

She is gonna be a GREAT example and influence to her new little sister(s)! YAY!

It's a HAPPY Day!

25 (TWENTY FIVE) YEARS ago I threw a BIRTHDAY Party for this CRAZY kid called Erik! We had CAKE and a yummy dinner in the basement of my parents house!! 

he was..
 It was the VERY FIRST Birthday I ever celebrated with him! ♥ 

...little did I know...
I would be celebrating every birthday with him from that point on! :)

Today he is...

My Tall
Spiritual Leader

25 YEARS growing up together! dating, marriage, playing house, raising babies, building our home, starting a business, ADOPTING...
♥ I look forward to celebrating his NEXT 25 BIRTHDAYS!



A few Moments to remember in 2010

Waiting and watching the numbers LOWER and the children coming HOME and dreaming and praying for the day our daughter(s) are with us!

Learned about FAIR TRADE - began purchasing FAIR TRADE Coffee and Chocolate!

Madison turned 16 and has her very first BOYFRIEND! Aaaagh! :)

ORDINARY HERO become our AMAZING HERO and gave us an opportunity to raise money to bring our Daughter(s) Home! ♥
(Answered PRAYER)

Kinzi's Softball team earned a berth to NATIONALS in Indiana!!
(Way to GOOOOO Kinz!)

 Added a few more animals to the FUNNY farm - 2 peacocks, a rooster and one more alpaca! :)
(All buddies to our St. Bernard - Bernee) :)

Met some AMAZING adopting Momma's! FRIENDS for LIFE! :)
(can't wait to start planning those PLAY DATES) :)

TOTALLY looking forward to a new year and some MAJOR changes as we gear up to SUPER-SIZE our CRAZY Family! 
(We CAN'T wait to see her/their SWEET face(s))