Sunday, May 23, 2010

Shane and Amanda's wedding

We had beautiful weather for the wedding in the mountains of New Hampshire - we were so blessed to all four be in the wedding of our dear friends! The girls were so good when it mattered most and cooperated nicely. Ana walked down the aisle with me; she got to carry a very special ring bearer pillow (no rings involved). Gracie was pushed down the aisle in her wheelchair by Auntie Amy; I decorated her wheelchair - I think it looks so cute! Josh and I provided some music. It ended up being very hot standing in the sun so long... Gracie does NOT handle such extreme weather changes well - we're planning on a slow start to our lives in Uganda to get us all used to the heat! More photos on facebook, so if you want to see more - go to my facebook!




(oh yeah, the hair was a pain - even this simple little hair-do resulted in lots of tears!)

Snuggling with Auntie Amy during the rehearsal.

Ana modeled the dress, socks, and shoes for us as the most cooperative of the four flower girls. Also the most girly of the girls as she was thrilled to have her hair dolled up and her nails painted!

Grandma with her flower girls! Yes, Amanda's mom MADE the flower girl dresses! adorable!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Adoption controversy

Some of you may be interested in this article on adoption. I didn't see the whole thing but it seems to me that they missed the point of Christian adoption. The point of Christian adoption is not to find the right child for my family - a child who won't stress me out or require too much attention or a child who is really cute, etc. No, the point of Christian adoption is that God adopted us, out of the muck and mire, unworthy, worthless to Him, always disobeying Him. Not only did He adopt those of us who are Christians, but He made us "full heirs with Christ!" (one of several references is Romans 8:14-17) We are to God equals with Jesus Christ, the very Son of God! THIS is what adoption of children is about. Demonstrating this truth to the world, showing the world the Grace that God has given us - this is the point of Christian adoption. Adoption may not be easy, especially adoption of older children, but it is irrelevant whether it is easy or difficult. It is a calling from God - a calling to demonstrate His grace to the world, a calling to care for the widows and orphans (James 1:27).

Anyway! See the article below! I'd love to have your comments!


700 Club Controversy Over Christians and Adoption

Alongside a compelling news report on Summit VI, commentary from Pat Robertson on why Christians would…or would not…adopt is likely to stir serious controversy. It’s worth watching the polite but highly-charged exchange between Robertson and co-host Terry Meeuwsen. (Embedded at bottom of post on Christian Alliance for Orphans Blog here).

Many orphan advocates likely will wince as they hear Robertson express sentiments like, “It [adoption] can be a blessing, if you get the right child.” The troubling statements, however, offer a striking reminder of three important realities. First, that many people harbor deep and understandable fears about adoption that must be gently and honestly addressed. Second, that even many Christians still hold the mistaken view that a successful adoption is primarily about building a family by finding the right child, rather than a decision born of both obedience and love–both of which spring from response to God’s loving adoption of us. And third, that much has changed even in the past several years, as Christians have re-awoken to the biblical call to care for orphans in their distress–not merely by sending checks overseas, but by opening their hearts and homes.

Explicit in Robertson’s concerns is an important theme wise adoption advocates repeatedly sound as well: “Count the cost.” Yes, many adopted children come from very difficult places, and the journey to a full sense of belonging and permanent family often is rife with difficulty, sacrifice and even sorrow. But this is only one piece of the story, and not the most important.

A segment of Robertson’s exchange with his co-host Terry Meeuwsen, who powerfully defends a truly Christ-hearted view of adoption, captures the issue well.

Robertson expresses serious concerns about adoption, warning of serious emotional, developmental and spiritual problems, and worrying, “If they’ve been brain damaged as a child, what’s going to happen?”

Meeuwsen affirms Robertsons’ fears, but then challenges: “…I think all children who’ve been through any kind of trauma certainly have emotional needs, for sure, and as you’re saying, spiritual needs. On the other hand, I would say, ‘If not us, who? Who sets those children free? Who teaches the truth to them? Who loves them to wholeness? It ought to be Christians.”

Robertson: “Well, I think it’s all real lovely but…”

Meeuwsen: “Well, it’s not ‘real lovely.’ I mean I think that lady that talked at the end [Lisa Harding] said it all when she said, you know, ‘I have the privilege of being daily being delivered from my own selfishness, from my own irritations.’ And you are. I’ve always said that if there’s a flaw in your marriage, in your family, in your character, it is all going to rise to the top. But it’s a bigger picture and if you’re called for it, go for it with gusto!’”

Terry Meeuwsen would know; she is a mother of seven, five by adoption.

Elizabeth Wiebe

Director of Outreach and Member Services

Christian Alliance for Orphans

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Diapering in the tropics

For whatever reason, my attention has once again turned to how I'm going to diaper my then newborn son and my then 7 year old special needs daughter in Uganda. Fortunately, Ana is doing great with potty training, so she's hopefully out of the equation when I ponder diapering!

One missionary friend recommended Fuzzi Bunz as they held up great in Kenya so I'm focusing my attention on Fuzzi Bunz brand (which makes extra large diapers special orders and are supposed to be good for special needs). I've also read that Happy Heiny holds up well overseas.

In the heat and humidity, elastic rots away very quickly and rough hand washing techniques ruin velcro quickly. Hemp diapers may last longer?

But I'm still not satisfied with the solutions for growing Gracie. She DOES use the potty, but (unlike last year) I have not been successful at keeping her dry during the day since she doesn't communicate when she has to go. My hope is that Ana can improve my timing and I'll just take Gracie every time Ana goes. My hope is also that with homeschooling we can be more consistent. My final hope is that we will work out a better solution for me getting the increasingly heavy Gracie on the potty and a system to keep her on the potty (as it is, I just hold her on a regular potty seat on the big toilet - she doesn't love it, she prefers the security of the big system that they have at school where she can even be left alone to do her business not limited by mom's fatigue).

Here are some links I've found - please share your comments, whether you diaper in the USA or abroad!

Diapering vs. bare bottom: http://www.gonomad.com/family/0101/brash_diapers.html

Special needs diapering:
http://www.bebewamu.com/category_33/Special-Needs-Youth-Cloth-Products.htm (these are all pull-on rather than snap-on which is preferable for a kid whose legs don't work well)

Patterns for special needs cloth diapers:

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Botox

Gracie got botox/phenol again today - about 7 months after her last. She had a great effect last time with relaxation of of her most spastic muscles, letting her weaker muscles get stronger. We will not be doing serial casting like last time (that's a relief!) because she is still at 90 degrees in her ankles (last fall she couldn't plant her foot flat on the ground). She work up from anesthesia in record time and we were out of the hospital by 10:45am! Praise God!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Josh's MDiv Graduation

What a celebration today as Josh graduated from Southern Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY with his Masters in Divinity!

Josh receiving his diploma from President Al Mohler.

Josh with Al Mohler at Dr. Mohler's house during a reception.

Gracie tried on Daddy's cap - not thrilled! ;-P

Ana likes Daddy's cap - especially the tassle!
Ana examines Daddy's diploma for accuracy. It passed approval!

Family portrait time.

Handsome Josh ready to graduate!




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