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I am a wife, daughter, mother, bilingual teacher, poet, author, women's Bible study teacher, world traveler, orphan advocate, and an adoptive mother.  Our adoption journey has been filled with a lot of hurt and loss, along with even more hope, grace, and healing.  Through it we have experienced more of God than we ever bargained for and have watched Him miraculously redeem our story when we surrendered all the broken pieces to Him.

Surviving the Valley Series

Surviving the Valley Series
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Monday, September 1, 2014

Embrace Life

I can't believe we've already been in school for a whole week!

To me, it was exhausting. No matter how "prepared" you are, the beginning is a challenge. Lots of training and practice to get your system in place.  I run my classroom on a very strict structure that takes a lot of work in the beginning but pays off incredibly in the end.  My morning class did quite well, actually, and are very pleasant to work with so far.  My afternoon class arrived in tears the first day and cried (no, screamed and wailed) for three hours straight.  Meaning, no teaching or establishing structure the first day.  The tears pretty much stopped by day two, but that group still brings a lot of drama!  Oh, my!

David came home the first day all stressed out because the school had messed up his schedule.  He had signed up for an advanced Spanish class and ended up in an Enriched Piano class.  After talking with the counselor, we realized he didn't get in to the Spanish class because it was too full.  If you know my son, you know a piano class has no appeal to him, so he ended up in P.E. instead.  He's happy now.

Juan David's schedule wasn't right either, even after three attempts over the summer to get it straight. His football coach is the one that is supposed to get it changed because he didn't get put into the Athletics class, but even after the first week, it's still not changed.  Sigh.  Other than that, Juan David had a good week.  He found his way around easily, and he understands the English in all of his classes--enough to call a teacher out on a mistake! (Respectfully, I hope.)  He also found several of his Vietnamese friends from his classes last year, so he is happy to share the same lunchtime with those friends.  He had football practice until six o'clock the first two nights, and a football game until almost eight on the third night, so the week felt exceptionally long to him.

We are all thankful to have a day off today.  Less than two months ago, we were enjoying ourselves so much on a camping trip that we had already mentally planned another trip for this weekend.  We sadly ditched that plan when the camper got totaled on the way home from that very trip. We could be wallowing in self-pity this weekend, still trying to figure out how to recoup some of the money we lost in the camper after the insurance said they could only give us $500 for our loss.  Instead, we are back in the market to replace it after the insurance decided to cover it, after all!  Mike had such an incredibly humble attitude regarding the whole thing, trusting that God had a plan.  I believe God is blessing him for that humble attitude.  He went above and beyond, giving us much more than expected, too.

I know one thing, I need to learn to embrace life and to embrace the gifts God gives us.  I need to stop worrying all the time about money, time, parenting, etc., and just learn to live.  When the camper is replaced, I want to enjoy every moment in it, accepting it as a true gift from God to our family. My boys are growing up, and I have very little time left with them, especially Juan David.  I want to enjoy every moment with them and accept the gifts that they are.  A full calendar doesn't mean we're running ourselves ragged.  It means we have a lot of opportunities to enjoy every aspect of life together, whether it be at a soccer game, a football game, a school event, a church event, or a family night out.

So, that's my "goal" for this school year. Embrace life and all the gifts it has to offer each and every day.

This is the day the Lord has made.  I will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24 

I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10

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