Thursday, June 26, 2008

Go check it out...

hey everyone...stop by David's blog when you get a chance. He has several new posts that are definately worth your time in reading. He also has a new look ...he did a bit of redecorating and the clean up crew just left!!
Don't forget to shower him with comments!! :-) Don't comments just make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside??
Ya'll are great by the way!!! :-)

love to all

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

...even though he did not know where he was going

I received a wonderful devotional in my in-box this morning. I wanted to share and make a feeble attemt at expounding upon it. It begins with this...The story goes that A missionary society in London wrote to Dr. David Livingstone and asked, "Have you found a good road to where you are? If so, we want to know how to send men to join you." Livingstone wrote back, "If you have men who will come only if they know there is a good road, I don't want them. I want men who will come if there is no road at all."

Wow...if that doesn't knock me off of my feet this morning nothing does!! This is where I feel like our little family has been for the last year...on a long road trip, with no map. Well, no map that WE could see!! God had (and still has) a firm grasp on the map and knows exactly where we are heading, but we haven't a clue.

It is called blind faith...and God has done a lot of building of it in David and me this last year...I think my girls are even starting to get it if that is possible. David posted a wonderful story on his blog last night. A friend sent it to us and it is very moving. The story is about Ferns and is about roots and how God grows us and what we do with it in the end. It also spoke volumes to me about how God deals with us and how we deal with God and sometimes we try to make it so much more complicated than it really is. I don't begin to understand what HE is doing, I don't need to...I am just called to obey.

I used to need mountain top experiences to validate my faith, but I'm passed that now. Besides, I am learning that if I will just chill out and stop trying to complicate things...God will give me exactly what I need right when I need it. It's not about me anyway!! It is about acomplishing His purposes through my life. How awesome that he would choose me to take on this mapless road trip.

This brings me to my point...
Aly and Lili have both been very occupied with "Let's talk about God and Jesus" They come to us many times each day and ask. They both know the basics...Jesus died on the cross so I don't have to die...he came back to life three days later and is now in heaven with his Daddy, God the Father. They are learning the 10 commandments and are beginning (at least Aly is at this point) to understand that even at 4 years old, she is a sinner and she needs a savior. We talk about needing a Savior most every night at bedtime. I look forward, with MUCH anticipation, to the day that she decides to let Jesus be her Savior. My Mother's heart longs to have one less thing to worry about when it comes to my babies!!!

There is one other thing that sticks with me as David and I walk through this parenting maze with these amazing children. More than anything, I want them to live a life of Reckless not be afraid to take that road trip with God without a road willingly say "yes" to God when everything and everyone around them is screaming "NO...don't do it"

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

The only way to teach that kind of faith, is to live that kind of faith. It is kind of like the slogan for the new Goldfish ad..."How children see things depends on what we teach them"

Please Lord...let me teach them right!!!

Monday, June 23, 2008

A Mommy...a Daddy ...and a Savior. Reckless Faith!

I saw this on a friends is long, but please take a few minutes to watch it and let it's powerful message imbed your very soul!!!

It is very simple...there are children all over the world who simply need a Mommy and a Daddy and a Savior!!! Can you help them with any of those three things?? Take a minute and let God speak to your heart and find out the answer for yourself!!

Okay...can be a little personal here and give you too much info? It's important..stay with me.

When we were in the process of our second homestudy...for Lili, our social worker asked me if I had dealt with my infertility issues. (She was assuming I had infertility issues by the fact that we were adopting...but I digress) Anyway, I told her that there was nothing to deal with. She argue her point, but there was no winning this one! I told her that there were NO infertility issues to deal with...not because there was or wasn't infertility but because that wasn't the point. We never saw anyone about the fact that we hadn't ever gotten pregnant, because I realized very early that my goal wasn't to get goal was to be a Mommy. I didn't need to see specialists to be a Mommy...I just needed to say yes to God and be a Mommy to a child who was already out there in the world needing someone to love them...with all of their scars, their pain, there issues, their problems and whatever else came along with them. I mean...after all...God took me on with all of my problems...he certainly didn't wait around for the "perfect" child to adopt!!

Okay...that is my soapbox for today. Please watch this video. Please pass it on. Please pray for this woman and the work she is doing. And pray for God to tell you how to get involved in some way...anyway help these children and the many other ones like them all over the world who just...need a Mommy and a Daddy and a Savior!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Kung Fu Grass-hoppa

Aly is all about the new movie "Kung Fu Panda." She hasn't seen it yet, but she can't wait to do so and loves loves loves McDonalds right now as they have all the characters. So...where do we have to go everytime anyone leaves the house??? Yep...McDonalds drive through!

Anyway, yesterday I had to go to the chiropractor and as I went out the door I got the usual speech..."Mom, hurry as fast as you can. Don't be gone too long...not a minute longer than you have to be gone. ( She absolutely cannot stand to be away from me for very long in any way shape or form) Hurry really fast. Don't do anything else, just come right home when you are done with the chi-o-pactor... um, would you go by McDonalds and bring me a surprise??"

I completed my mission to McDonalds and came home with two Kung Fu Grasshopper characters (she already has the Panda and the Tiger thank you!). Why two?? Uh, DUH...don't forget Lili!!! :-)

Anyway, Aly came running out to the car with arms outstretched and I said, "Here ya go" She looked at it in it's lovely plastic wrapper and with her eyes all popping out said, "Mom, what is it?" I , equally excited, responded (in my best David Carradine Grasshopper voice) "It is Ancient Kung Fu Grass-hoppa!!" She looked at it and then at me and then wrinkled her little face up and said, "Mom...this doesn't look much like a grasshopper. It looks more like a Praying Mantis!" I'm thinking...Praying Mantis???? She is four years old...she doesn't know a praying mantis from praying monk!! Ha Ha Ha So I looked at it a little closer and it was at that moment... I saw my future. Now I know what I need to stand in front of my mirror each and every day and start practicing. It is the phrase I will be saying with this child for many years to come....
"Yes dear, you are right...I am wrong!"

Monday, June 16, 2008

...the secret is in the sauce!!!

Okay one and all...check out this really cool new site I just found yesterday!!! Don't you hate it when people come to your blog and don't comment??? I love that people come check out our life here at the Wok, but I SOOOOOO wish they would say hello...or at least yell at me for not posting anything new in a few days!!! Anyway...that is what this blog is all about...spreading the comment love to those around us! I LOVE IT!!!!
Go check it out for yourself. There are always contests abounding, new blogs to check out and lots of love to spread.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

I finally found the cable for the camera!!

Okay...I haven't been looking too hard...sorry! This week has been NUTS NUTS NUTS!!! Aly has been coughing her guts up with allergies, I now have a sinus infection, the house is in total disarray, I can't find my desk...I'm typing on a mound of papers, Aly has been begging me to do schoolwork and I finally was able to scrounge up some stuff for her to do yesterday. It was more busy work than anythings else...just to get her off my back so i could continue to attempt to get this place back on some sort of even keep! WHEW!!!
This is the week for me to get my act together and start getting this place into a working, functioning home!!! I am going to sit down later today and come up with a game plan and a set some time frames up for what I want/need to get done. We are officially starting homeschooling in September, so it MUST be done by then!!!
I must say that it has been nice this past week to not have the WEIGHT OF THE WORLD on our shoulders any more!!! Don't get me wrong, we still have a good ways to go to dig out of all of this, but PRAISE actually seems doable now!!

I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.
I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:
Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for

his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him." about some pictures of the beautiful babies???

Aly helping Aunt Babs blow out her birthday candles

UMMMMM...birthday cake is finger licking good!!

On Sunday we went to Henry's parents house for lunch. After a wonderful meal, we went out on the back porch and let the girls run their little tooshies off in the back yard. We all had such a wonderful day!!

Do you see that tiny blue dot just to the right and up from center? That would be Lili on her way back from visiting with the cows farther off. She wasn't scared, she just ran right up to them.

Poor thing was so far away from us that she got all disoriented and was running all over trying to find us. Uncle Henry and Aly went after her after she took off around the other side of the house next door!! :-)

Explorer Lili coming home after her exciting adventure...thanks Uncle Henry!!

Lili stuck kind of close to Aly after that!!

Gotta love the love!!!

Portrait with the Lili's...unfortnately there was NO WAY they would open their eyes into the sunshine!!! Smiles...YEP Eyes...FORGET IT!!

I thought Aly would pass out from all of her running around, but Lili was the one who was down for the count. She was totally wiped out!! Babs rocked her for about two seconds before she passed out. Poor Babs...I know she had better things to do that to sit and rock Lili for the better part of two hours, but she never complained!! Yeah...right...I challenge any of you to have gotten her out of Babs arms without losing an arm of your own!!! :-)
The absolute highlight of the trip for Aly was getting to see her precious friend Allie Loos. Aly and Allie were both born in China. They are 9 months apart in age and were adopted one year apart. They both have really missed each other since we moved from TN and the one thing that Aly wanted to do on this trip was to get to see Allie Loos. They are so funny...neither one calls the other by their first name. They call each other "Allie Loos" and "Aly Swindler".
It was so precious when we came in the house and Allie came around the corner. They just stood and stared at each other for a moment and then said in their adorable little squeaky voices, "Allie Loos!" and "Aly Swindler" and then they just walked toward each other and hugged. Such a special moment!! Oh how I hope these two can stay close as they grow up!!!

Lili passed out in my bed at the hotel in Columbia

This was hilarious...I came in the living room at the hotel and found Aly in the recliner watching tv like this. She's definately a wierdee!!

Okay...speaking of "WEIRDEE" This wasn't on our trip, it was just yesterday evening. David had been swimming with the girls and when they came in their hair was nearly dry, but I still needed to put their conditioner on them. They, especially Aly, have coarse hair that turns to straw if not conditioned well. So, I have this WONDERFUL thick creme conditioner that I use and I just slathered it on them for a little while and then rinsed them out in the sink. This was Lili running around with the goop in her hair!! I just love this is so Lili's personality...a little monkey!!!!
Hope you enjoyed the week in pictures!!!!
Til next time....
In His Mighty Grip

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Were home is done!!

Hello everyone. I have gotten so many phone calls wondering what was going on and begging for has been nuts the last few days. So, here is the update...

The house closed with minimal hitch late Friday afternoon. David and his sister didn't even see the woman...she signed her papers and they ushered her out, then David and Beth signed their stuff and left. I think that was a smart move on the part of the lawyers as both David and Beth were ready to kill!!

Anyway, Friday night we all went out for a celebratory dinner at Zorba's in Columbia. (If you are ever in Columbia and are looking for good food...Zorba's is it!!) Then, after a long day of trying to get loose ends tied up and then driving for about 5 1/2 hours...we are finally HOME!!!

Daddy, who was coming out of his skin to see his baby girls, had a big pot of Gumbo waiting for us. I have never seen someone who was so excited to see a 4 and a 2 year old!! It was so sweet...he really really really missed them!!

We were so tired...didn't even unpack the car! We just ate, cleaned up the kitchen and went to bed about10:30 or so last night. Lili fought me tooth and nail, but she was out minutes after I put her in the crib. It is now about 10:30 AM and I am the only one awake. I decided to get a jump on the laundry and try to get as much unloaded from the car before it gets too too hot outside. Too late! :-)

Anyway, I cannot even begin to express how I feel that the weight of the world has been taken off of our shoulders!! David was visibly less stressed all the way home yesterday. I hadn't realized how much of a toll it had taken on him until I watched him yesterday in the car. Such a huge difference!! Thank you God!!!

We were talking a lot in the car and we both feel like we can now START our lives again. After we left the Children's Home, we were just beginning to get our feet under us when the rollercoaster started and we have just been hanging on for dear life ever since. This was just one of several more issues on our backs, but it was the biggy...and now it is done!!!!

So, now we get to spend some serious time together and with God and get our lives back on track!! David has a book to finish and income to generate, we have a foundation to start, I have a home to organize and two beautiful children to teach and create a life for!!!!! I feel like we have been stuck wading through all of our memories for so long that we have forgotten about making new ones for our baby girls!! I know that God has wonderful plans for our family. I know we were not meant to be stuck in this muck and mire forever...and now we are coming out of it. A time of testing followed by a time of blessing.

Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

Thanks to everyone for all the neverending prayer support. I feel like I have been asking for prayer for so very long now. Thank you to those of you who held on and stuck with us through all of this!!!

Off to switch out the laundry... :-) Pictures to come...I won't forget!!

In HIS Mighty Grip...Shelley

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Inquiring minds want to know...

NO...WE HAVE NOT CLOSED ON THE *&%$^*(*&^&*** @$*# HOUSE YET!!!!

We are leaving Johnson City tomorrow after a wonderful few days spent relaxing and seeing old friends. We are heading back to Columbia and hopefully will close either tomorrow or Friday. YEAH RIGHT!!! How many times have we heard that story???? I'll believe it when I am holding that check in my hands and am on the way to the bank to cash the blasted thing!!!

I is all in God's timing!! whatever!!!!

It has been wonderful to spend this time here visiting in JC and we are looking forward to getting back home, with the house closed and FINALLY able to start our life again for the first time in so many many many months!!! that is about it.

Still don't have pictures uploaded yet, but I promise to post amazing and wonderful pictures of our amazing and wonderful children very very soon. Yes I promise to post videos too Stacey!!!!

Keep to you all!!


Monday, June 2, 2008

Updates and stuff... is the scoop...

1- we found the DVD player before we left, so Miss Aly watched about every movie in the arsenal on our way to SC and then TN!!! WHOOOOO HOOOOO...there is a GOD and He is good!!!

2- Closing was NOT on Friday and the plan was for today (Monday), but we are still sitting here at our friends house in Johnson City waiting to hear something. It is now 2pm on Monday and we still have NOTHING set for closing. It is about 3 1/2 hours drive back to Columbia so it is a safe bet that we won't be closing today either!!! Of course not...that is because we have scheduled EVERYTHING for tomorrow with all of our friends here in Johnson City so that David would be back from SC. So much for that!!!

3- Photo shoot of the girls tomorrow morning, lunch with friends, and dinner with other friends...guess the girls and I will be doing those things alone while David is busy dealing with the idiot lawyers in Columbia. :-) Whatever!!!

4- We had lunch at our friends parents home yesterday. It was absolutely AWESOME! They live out in the country and after we ate, the girls took their shoes off and ran their little behinds off in the back yard. Before you know it they both had their shirts off and they were having the time of their lives. We took lots and lots of pictures and I post them when we get home and I get them transfered to the 'puter. We sat out on the back porch watching them, talking and letting the wonderful breeze blow away all of our was the most relaxing afternoon I have spent in a year or more!!!

5- The girls are thoroughly enjoying themselves and getting lots and lots of luvin from Aunt Babs and Uncle Henry. Or as Lili calls them Uncle Babs.

6- Please keep praying for traveling mercies for the rest of the trip.
For the house closing ASAP!!!
For our health during this trip

Okay...I'm outta here. I'll post as soon as anything happens.