Sunday, July 31, 2011


What is the sign of a memorable weekend?

A cry at the beginning and a cry at the end.

I am pretty sure for the past 3 years (we missed the first) when we have met up with our China travel group, I have cried when families arrived and cried when they left. I'm sappy like that! I have typed it before...I love these families. I love their children. I love the heart they have for family, adoption and the Lord! I think of how we met in Beijing and spent 15 long, hot days together in and out of buses, hotels, strange restaurants, and airports! One of the other moms is a labor and delivery nurse and I think she said it best: "I see children born and families made everyday, and nothing can compare to the experience of being in that delivery room the day we met our daughters." It is unlike anything else I have every experienced.

I'll pick just a few of my favorite pictures from the weekend. This year we gathered with 5 of the 9 families.

One of these things are not like the rest! :)

An attempt to do another "red couch" photo:

The sweetest brother (same age) came home last year and was so excited and happy to put on his Chinese outfit and join in the picture fun! (His sister the little girl in the front row on the left.)

Lord willing, there will be two more (at least) added to our group by next year through adoption.

Emails and orders note: I didn't respond to any orders or emails since last Wed. (I will get to those tomorrow.) The most recent order of t-shirts will be mailed out--new order of cups posted with two new colors--a fabulous, colorful raffle that you don't want to miss....ALL happening this week!!

Also...lost my blog list some how. It may take me a while since I'll have to type in sites, but I'll be checking in with you all and your latest news. Any tips on how to retrieve my side blog list??

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

It's ReUnIoN time!!!

We are off to meet up with 5 of the families from our China travel group. Here is last year's "red couch" photo of the girls.
It is an amazing thing to see these "Xiushan Sisters" (missing two) every year. I feel such a bond with these families that we shared our journey with. These sweet faces spent the first 9-11 months of their lives with one another...sharing cribs and toys. (The older girl on the end is a big sister to one of the X.S) And now they share having a family!! I can't wait to see them.

I'll try to post some pictures as we spend the long weekend together.
I'm also going to be working with some friends on some big 'ole changes coming to our
Minus 1 Project

Monday, July 25, 2011

A bit of Italy

We spent the weekend at a family reunion: a very Italian family reunion! It was a great time of stories (Tim's dad parents came straight over on a boat from Italy in the early 1900s) surrounded by tables of food....REAL Italian food. We enjoyed all kinds of pastas, pizza, and desserts!

Here I am, sitting at the bar fixing Lindsey's hair. Keep in mind this was for breakfast. A authentic Italian breakfast at "The Italian Home".
(Send that one to our home study agency! Ha!!)
We were watching the boys and some relatives play on a bowling that Tim played on as a boy.
We ventured outside for a Bocce tournament.
The day ended with a back yard gathering where the kids quickly made friends and got to run around.
Sunday morning we returned for a family picture and good-byes before starting out on our long trek home.
Tim's dad with his four children, spouses and grand children (2 not pictured)

The reunion letter that was sent out this past spring ended with a neat quote from Anthony Brandt:

"Other things may change us, but we start and end with family."

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A day in the life of Micah

Many months ago, while at my parents' house, Lindsey came out of the playroom holding a baby doll. Not just holding-holding this doll, but lovingly, cradling it. She kept him with her all weekend. Not that unusual for a 4 year old girl, right?
(Last Sept...the weekend she found the doll)

Yes, except for Lindsey is not really into girly things. In fact, when playing she is usually "Zack", the brother and is more likely to be found digging in the mud or taking apart things than playing dress up. Something about this doll caught her attention and brought out this sweet, mothering side. She affectionately named him Micah. Needless to say, Micah came home with us that weekend and I'm not sure a day has gone by without her "caring" for him. Sometimes this is only a minute or two, other days it can last for hours. I have captured some of the cutest moments with her and this baby....

(Micah is in the blue chair)
Micah sleeping in the pack-n-play
"Zack" with Micah and dog, Rolly
This is one of my favorite pictures of the two of them.
I feel like I am making a baby book for Micah! :)
And one last photo taken only a few nights ago during dinner.
This was actually fun going through pictures and seeing how Lindsey (and Lucy, too) has grown. Funny how the baby stays the same!! Lindsey talks about how when our baby comes home she is going to do all this with our baby--we do explain to her that the baby will most likely be bigger than Micah and not quite as willing or resilient!

She is going to be a wonderful big sister.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Love this!

1 pink "got love?" t-shirt: $15
2 purple "What is good?" t-shirts: $50.00
Serving along side your daughters to pack up thousands of meals for children in Nicaragua: PRICELESS!!

(Thanks for sharing your picture with me, Susan. I love it!)

Monday, July 18, 2011

The year of the hermit crab

Do you remember the parable of the persistent widow? We could write our own about persistent sons. These two have asked for hermit crabs every year while on our beach trip since the time they could talk. We have always said no or "the week is just starting, maybe we can come back toward the end of the week" Not. I don't know why we have never let them--either way, this year, we broke.
If we had known the fun and happiness these crabs would have delivered, we may have said yes sooner. (I'm feeling a bit sorry for my pet deprived children.)

Besides hermit crab races and training..our week was full of sunshine, cousins, fishing, swimming, and laughter. Here are some random photos from the week:
"What is good?" Micah 6:8 t-shirts

Did I mention how many cousins my children have on my side of the family? 16!!
I heart family!
beach vacations where we are ALL together!
I am hoping by next year's vacation there will be one more in the picture and one less orphan without a family. Until then, I will relish in the family that I have been so blessed to be a part of.

I have decided to keep the below sale going--no more freebie surprises, though. I'll update if we get close to sold out. We've sold about half of the shirts. Thank you!!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Weekend Clearance

Do you remember these pictures?
These were taken last fall when we first started selling t-shirts. Way back then, we only had the black color to offer. I have to say...I love this shirt. I am a fan of the black/white and (heart) the "147 million orphan" line. (The word adopt is thrown around today in reference to all sorts of things: pets, highways, etc..)

I feel like the first two lines are the HUG and the last is the PUNCH.

So, we still have many of these shirts and are in the process of some BIG changes in our blog and fundraising. Therefore, we are clearing out some of our "in home" stock to make room for some new gear we are planning on adding in mid-August.

First on the auction (or sales) block are the original black "got love?' tees. And although I am a bit sad to see these go, I am excited to see how God is moving and growing us. This weekend is YOUR chance to purchase a bit of history of our Minus 1 Project. I am sure it doesn't mean nearly as much to you as it does to me.....but it is a great deal!! :)

Each t-shirt only $12, including shipping. $12 only!! We have a few of the long sleeve, $15. I'll be choosing 5 packages (randomly) and including a bonus gift..something else from our in-stocks. I'll wait to post these winners until mid week, so they can be surprised when they open their packages. The next best thing besides a guessing game, in my opinion, is a surprise.

Here are the sizes available (short sleeve):

ADULT LARGE (only a few left)

We also have a few long sleeve shirts: ADULT MEDIUM, ADULT LARGE $15 (very limited)
Sizes are limited so if we get low on a size I will update our list. Order by using the donate button--$12 for each short sleeve shirt, $15 for each long sleeve, leave your size choice in the "comment to seller" section or email me.

Happy Purchasing to you and Clearing Out to me! Have a great weekend, friends.