wild hair & the good day

by the time i got downstairs this morning, i nearly felt like my old self. it's 8am and the floor is mopped, the laundry is swirling and the kids are building some sort of fort contraption. oh and i'm writing this blog post. wow, it really is like old times :)
emery has (a videotaped followup research project) therapy at 10 (i'm groaning as i type it) which we are determined to smile all the way through...
and this afternoon...oh this afternoon....we are headed to visit a sweet friend who just brought her baby girl home from china 1 week ago (born only 1 month before emery!!). i couldn't be more thrilled! we saw them at church last night and emery and isabelle spent and hour running around together. i spent that hour chocking back tears to see them bopping around as if they were old friends. pics to come!

and tonight? dinner and drinks with the girls :)

i love today already...
a day that feels like the old me
or maybe the old me, new again

speaking of old things made new, we buzzed the long haired locks that had become quite unruly around here.
i'll be the first to say that i LOVE little boys with fun, wild hair...but when the size of your child's hair doubles the circumference of his head? it might be time for a snip.

exhibit A:

can you tell how much he loves his new do??? so adorable!

i might just kiss off those sweet sweetie cheeks!!

exhibit B:

all grown up and handsome!!
wait, did you grow 4 years in the past 10 minuets? eek, boy...you are getting so big!!

and one of my girl because...well, because i can't resist :)

blurry? yes. girl hasn't stopped moving in the past 48 hours.
she's a flash of fun and wonderful :)

been focusing on this today:
"God can do anything, you know...far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around, but by working within us... His Spirit deeply and gently within us." (eph 3:20 - the message)

...and praying over friends who are anxiously hoping to meet their sweet babies tonight!!! the shared list will be released tonight from China (it has all of the special needs children who are newly added and paper ready).  it's the night that an email literally changes your life :)
join me in praying for wisdom for parents who have been longing to finally see the face of the one they adore.


the adoption club {it's fantastic}

when you adopt, you are automatically enrolled in the membership of a new club
a club that you didn't even know existed before-hand
it's like pregnancy, motherhood, marriage...
you can't get in until you're in
and once you are? you find something so fantastic...you didn't even know you were missing it in your life.

(eek!!!!! my favorite photo!! look at those trampoline smiles!!)

yesterday, we had the pleasure of meeting a club member who's been a blog friend for a while.
honestly, it sounds a little strange to me to say "i'm meeting up with a blog friend" but you know what?
blog friends are real friends. today proved it :)

when i say it was a blessing to spend the day these sweet friends, it was truly a blessing
what could be better than sitting on the floor, surrounding by sweet and loving kids...
and marveling at our sweet china girls as they bop around in such a similar manner
not only are they nearly the same age and size, but even the sounds their voices make and their cute, quirky mannerisms are so similar

 sweet, gorgeous Tahlia is so delicious, i wanted to scoop her up and kiss her all day.

but knowing she isn't so keen on strangers smooching her, i exercised a vast amount of self control and refrained from totally freaking her out :)

tahlia is the youngest of 5, and what a loving bunch they are.
everywhere i looked, there was someone holding one of our girls, playing with them, or helping them up when they fell. they spoke with kindness and sweetly embraced my three with such love.
truly, they make a family of 7 look easy

 my boys had never before been on a giant trampoline (gasp)!  they (meaning foster) thought it was the best thing on earth. within moments he already taught himself to do front flips and flying leaps.
rowan, however, was not enthused. see his lifeless body flopping around?? you can't see it in this picture, but he was sobbing and screaming. seconds later i saved him from tranpoline terror. he's a "second try" kind of a kid. i bet next time he'll be doing front flips with the best of them.

miss emery has newly overcome her stranger anxiety in the past month
she surprised me by letting any and all of the CanneLongo's hold her
she was also quite liberal with her saucy smooches, much to the chagrin of Tahlia who wasn't so sure if she wanted a big slobbery kiss :)

it's a small world
blog friends are real friends
and we are all so similar, even in our uniqueness
it was a pleasure to spend time with you my dear friend.
i can't wait until our next play date...
it's incredible to know we are in life together :)


it was quiet {for at least 5 mississippi's}

it's not too often (ok, never) that i catch her relaxing
given the nina, the pinta and the santa maria, this little explorer could have found the new world in less than a day
we are constantly keeping up with emery, not the other way around :)
but for a rare moment...dare i say several moments, i captured this lovely creature...at rest

on occasion, big brother 1 and 2 enjoy a movie...
you know, when mama needs a few moments to gather her thoughts, scrounge dinner or perhaps take a shower...

(oh how i love tiny kid feet!!)

but miss Christopher Columbus never seems to take notice...until today.

(tiny feet!!! eek! i looooove hers!!)

never thought i would be so excited to see a child sit and watch tv!!

it didn't last long, and after enough mississippi counts to snap a few tender moments...
she was off to explore. new worlds to be found.

she never stops, and if given a full belly and a full nights rest, she's quite pleasant. and when i say "she", really i'm referring to me :) like mother like daughter, right?

speaking of the girl who never stops, we've been referred to a nutritionist over the past few months who is helping us to analyse emery's growth. much to our delight, she has caught up in nearly every area that she was initially lagging behind in when she came home. we have even stopped physical therapy because she no longer needs it!! ha!! so cool!  but her weight (17lbs) has leveled off in such a way that they (you know, "they") are concerned that her lack of weight gain is something to be concerned about. apparently, her measurements are un-proportional. her head is on the growth chart (way to go brain!!) while the rest of her hasn't quite made it's appearance on the chart.

personally, i think she looks fantastic! yes, when shed of her clothing, she resembles the size of my boys at birth :) but seriously...she's just a tiny little girl. perhaps she was a premie?? the world may never know. regardless, i wasn't concerned until they told me to be concerned. leave it to "them".

i have no idea how to add more calories. i'm already drizzling olive oil in her yogurt. adding scoops of calorie supplements to her high calorie formula and calorie laden smoothies. she never eats a morsel of anything unless it has a dollop of peanut butter, ketchup (her favorite), or cheese, etc. and if i could count the number of avocados and potatoes lathered in butter this girl has consumed? she could feed north america with her appetite for those two items alone.

i say all of this because (a) maybe someone out "there" has suggestions? and (b) if you think of it, pray for miss emery to gain some weight :)  i'm hoping she has some buttery thunder thighs in her near future.

i ADORE this shot! must.frame.asap.

it's safe to say, i don't think the real christopher columbus ever wore kicks like these!!


poofy jacket kind of a day

we threw ourselves outside today, in hopes of beckoning spring a bit faster.
though this winter has been strangely mild, we need outside happy 70 degree weather
we need muddy projects and outdoor painting
we need to pack up our poofy jackets and snow boots and store them where the sun don't shine
and bring out the flip flops and picnic lunches and long walks in the cool creekbed

until then, we are throwing ourselves outside
these two boys and this little girl couldn't be happier

miss picky shoes literally came unglued when she saw these furry kicks

she wouldn't even let me carry them for her...she was insistent to not let them out of her sight.
we *might* have a slight shoe obsession in the works. fine by me :)

leave it to a little boy to fall in the mud and laugh with glee because his hands got so muddy

he ended up making some sort of patty, which may or may not have resembled the kind of "patty" that little boys find strangely hilarious

they may or may not have laughed for a half hour every time someone got a piece of "patty" flung in their direction.

and this little poofy girl?

she's killing me in her purple polka dot jacket
she had to keep her arms nearly horizontal to keep from toppling over :)


precious are the hands {loving the Love}

when clint and i moved to china as a young married couple, we had the honor of meeting some of the  most influential Chinese pastors in southern China who were growing the underground church in unbelievable ways. it was an unforgettable experience, just to be in the same room as these men and women. we worked as english teachers and brought our students to underground churches led by these pastors. being in the presence of these amazing teachers of God's Love, i remember praying deeply for my future children. praying they would catch the magnetic Love in God's Word. i wanted my children to be a part of God's plan...no matter what it was.

seeing this lovely girl, pouring over the pages of such a precious book...it makes me marvel the incredibleness of God's plan. my sweet china girl...in love with the book that tells of her Creator's passion...a passion that went to great lengths to make a way for her. to form her sweet lips in a most beautiful way in her birth mother's womb. to care for her when no one else did.
it's hard to even comprehend the way He orchestrates every part of our lives with such passion...even when we don't understand or recognise His doing.

hearing Foster explain to his younger brother that we should treat each other the way we want to be treated "because it pleases God when we obey the Bible"...it makes me stop and ponder the way God's Word penetrates little souls in amazing ways.

this morning, i overheard Foster reciting the book "I Love you Like Crazy Cakes" to emery, from memory.
"you see, sissie, you were in a big room with lots of other babies. you wanted your mama, so the nannies took care of you while you waited. mommy sat at a desk, praying for you and doing the paperwork, and then she got on the airplane and flew through the clouds and came to get you! she hugged you and hugged you! she loved you like crazy cakes!
when you came home, we were so happy! you're our sister! that's how you came to our family...it's your story! oh i just love you so much i just can't stop hugging you! we're so glad we adopted you!! you are the prettiest and cutest sister i've ever seen! how did you get so cute? hu? how did we get such a cute sister?? who made you sister?? God did! that's who!! He knew just how to make you!"
and on and on...
if i wrote down everything, i would just sit around and cry over the sweetness.

seeing Rowan gently kiss his sisters hands, follow her carefully up the stairs to make sure she doesn't fall, and sweetly talk to her when she cries...his love for her is beautiful. a love that doesn't always come easily when your sister pulls your hair and screams when you try desperately to keep your toys from being swiped. their friendship is still emerging. it's a long & exhausting process each day to teach them how to communicate. but their love? it runs deep below the brother/sister sharing issues. so deep that it surprises me in the way they care for each other.
when rowan gets hurt or cries, sister brings him his favorite lovie. she scours the downstairs in search for it, because she knows what he needs. his needs are important to her.
their love runs deep.

i'm spending today seeing the Love. the great and powerful Love.


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