Thursday, June 30, 2011

A little more Malawi

In case you haven't had enough... a few more photos of our
life-changing journey to Malawi:
Lake Malawi.  According to all-knowing Wikipedia, it's the 8th largest lake in the world and the habitat of more species of fish than those of any other body of freshwater on Earth.  To us it was just a relaxing retreat away from the craziness we'd faced in the preceeding week.
The best travelling companions anyone could ask for, my parents,
and further evidence of God's grace towards Danny and I.

If this bridge doesn't look rickety enough from the top...

... take a look underneath!  Believe it or not they have to rebuild
these each year after the rains come. 

Those seasonal rains started while we were there, bringing with them a much-anticipated feast from the Lord:  flying termites!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Birthday boy

As of midnight, my favorite 6 year-old will magically transform into my favorite 7 year-old... for at least the next year.  If joy and enthusiasm were ever bundled up into a cuter package, I would like to see it.  I'm sure most mamas think God saved the very best for them, but I know I am the most blessed.  And though all my children are (usually) a joy to parent, Parker is especially skilled at making me laugh.  His antics sometimes get him in trouble... and sometimes land him in the pool fully clothed, as happend here when kite flying occuppied a little too much of his attention.  Mostly, they just make me want to scoop him up and give him a kiss... which he still happily lets me do.  Happy Birthday bud! 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Picture Perfect: Black and White

It's a good thing my bloggy friend Nancy keeps having (very amateur) photography contests or I'd be left with nothing to blog about at all.  This month's theme is Black and White, and if I my skills are limited in color, they are undoubtedly even more limited in B&W.  I do however love this shot of Parker - the mischief behind those eyes and the lashes that never end.  That boy never fails to make me smile!  Head on over to Ordinary Miracles & the Crazy 8 if you'd like to play too...

Picture {Perfect}

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Be still my cherry-loving heart

There aren’t too many culinary delights that exceed the joy of fresh cherries.  What I didn’t realize until today was how that joy would be multiplied when the fruit made its way directly from tree to mouth.  The kids, my nephew, my mom and I took a little road-trip to a local orchard for our first picking experience.  Needless to say the fruit was delightful, and watching the kids made it even more fun.  They scouted out the ripest cherries and sampled some from each tree to make sure they were sweet enough.  They were.  We got so carried away in the excitement that we came home with almost fifteen pounds of treasure.  Good thing we have a birthday party coming up with lots of cherry- and (Parker-) loving  friends to share them with!

Monday, June 13, 2011

We had FUN in Malawi too!

Though we certainly experienced our fair share of heartache while we in Malawi (the Whole Story begins here), we actually had fun too.  A trip to Africa would make many Americans’ bucket list, but it’s unlikely we would ever have taken the time away from our children, or the money, to go there if not for an adoption.  You all have borne with me through the sad parts of our saga, so I thought it was only appropriate to share our more joyful moments as well. 
These first photos are from what will remain my most memorable of birthdays.  Our dear friend Kondi took us to a village just minutes outside the capital city of Lilongwe.  It’s just a quick drive, and not much longer walk, to a developing, urban environment, yet most of the children – even teenagers – have never left their village, and very rarely seen “uzungus” (“white people” in Chichewa) like us.  If our skin alone wasn’t enough of a novelty, the soap, rice and candy we brought along made us instant hits.  The chief gave us a tour of his home, the villagers sat us down in their nicest (only?) plastic chairs, and the children all gathered to sing a number of their favorite songs.  They especially enjoyed seeing themselves on our cameras’ LCD screens, and patiently waited in line for their share of the Tootsie Rolls.  Everyone there was impoverished by our standards (some of the children even had the orangey hair of the malnourished), but were remarkably hospitable, kind and happy.  On that particular day I was feeling rather sorry for myself that I couldn’t be home with our children, and was struck with the realization that I’ve never once had to worry about getting them enough to eat.  I was humbled by the thought of all that I choose to complain about when I truly have so very much.        

Tuesday, June 07, 2011


Parker has recently been given a chore disposing of all the debris we generate around here. The less-fun part of the task involves running up and down the stairs collecting trash from the various receptacles around our home.  He doesn't seem to mind at all though for the privilege of then tossing everything into the back of his pick-up truck.  Lesser jobs call for the more agile, commuter-sized Skidder.  Apparently he's counting it all joy (do you see the look on his face?)... especially when his efforts are rewarded with a little cash to learn with.