About Me

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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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Sunday, May 29, 2016

Four days

Yes, I do apologize for disappearing from the blogging world for the last month. Life happened, and this time of the year always brings more activities than we should healthily handle at one time. Or maybe I just see it that way because I don't like to commit to anything that I can't give 100% of my attention to-thus making me feel like I am trying to juggle way too much and only give about 50% to each activity. I took a much needed break from all writing in general. Hopefully the end of school this week will allow me to focus again on writing and blogging.

With that being said, these last four days speak so many different things to me right now, depending on what my perspective is.

As an AM Pre-K teacher, watching my kids squirm around anxiously awaiting summer, listening to them shout and scream all morning as they "talk" to each other at their tables while working on a project, and feeling rather defeated at seeing their very real lack of motivation to excel, I just breathe a sigh of relief and think, "Only four more days."

As a PM Pre-K teacher, I watch my kids work together so well, encourage each other, cheer each other on toward excellence, and arrive with a truly contagious enthusiasm every day. They started out the year so young and lost, and now they are ending the year so much more mature and independent. With sadness over knowing our time together is ending so quickly, I sigh and think, "Wow. Only four more days."

As a mom of an eighth-grader, I am thankful we survived those "dreaded" middle school years. I am thankful David no longer has to start his day an hour later than the rest of us. I am thankful he and Juan David will be on the same schedule next year and will attend the same church activities and camps. Then it hits me that my baby will be in high school, and I want to savor these last four days, desperately trying to make time slow down.

As an adoptive mom of an 18 year old, I have so many mixed feeling about Juan David embarking on his senior year. I think to myself, "I just barely got you home, and now here we are getting ready to mobilize you to spread your wings and enter the world of young adults." I don't know what awaits him a year from now, and I don't even want to think about it. Since he came to us so late in life, there's so much that I never got to teach him. I can't take away the negative exposures and habits he picked up all throughout his life, but I can only hope that what we model to him is sticking and will show up in his character at just the right moment, even when nobody's watching. I hope I don't waste a moment of these last four days of this current school year.

As a writer, all the busyness of soccer tournaments, school meetings, and school and church EOY events has left me feeling like I'm on overload when really all I want to do is write and color. Hopefully the summer months will get me back into a rhythm of writing, reflecting, and embracing the simplicities of life. Just four more days! I can't wait!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

An honor

A few months ago, I saw a post on Facebook looking for women to share their story for a website called She is Called. I had recently just written our story down in a two part post for the Community Moms site that I write for each month, so I submitted it.

Then in early April, I got the most encouraging e-mail from the lady in Australia who runs She is Called, saying how inspiring my testimony was. She said she wanted to feature me as Woman of the Week and run my story especially during the week of Mother's Day. She asked if Wednesday, May 11, would be okay with me.

Woman of the Week for my birthday? What a gift. When she learned that our story is actually a two part book series, she said she'd help me out with that, as well! What a blessing.

It is an honor to share our story here on yet another platform that God opened up for me. (My platform is still fairly small as a new author, but I am amazed at how God makes connections like these for me. It's His story, after all, so I guess it shouldn't surprise me.)

Please check it out, along with the other stories shared by other women who have been called for a purpose.

Two years in a row!

I've got to use one more blog entry today to brag on my son. I'm so proud of him for his dedication to his team and his coaches this year. We went to the annual soccer banquet for Naaman Forest High School on Thursday, and Juan came home with the Defensive MVP Award (voted for by his teammates) for the second year in a row.

This is the trophy that the Varsity team won for being the District Champs. Since he was also an alternate player for the Varsity team, he got to be part of that excitement, too.

Those two sure are some good-looking brothers, if I do say so myself. David's so tall now that it's hard to tell there's four years between them.


I love May. First comes Teacher Appreciation Week, then Mother's Day, then my birthday--all within a few days of each other. Plus May is the month of flowers, and flowers just always make me smile.

My kids last year spoiled me rotten for Teacher Appreciation Week, so I must admit that I was selfishly disappointed for most of the week this year. However, I misjudged my sweet students and their parents because they definitely spoiled me on the final day of Teacher Appreciation Week.

And as if that wasn't enough, they brought me even more flowers on Monday and Tuesday for Mother's Day. And then they brought me more flowers and gifts again on Wednesday for my birthday.

I am blessed to be their teacher, and although I've griped because this group of students seems to be harder to work with than previous years, their appreciation gifts make it much easier to keep on motivating them till the end of the school year. 

Mother's Day 2016

I am so grateful God chose me to be a mom to these two amazing boys. I just wish the one on the left would stop growing so much. 

Velvet Rose

I'd like to introduce you to the newest little member of our family, Velvet Rose (whom I have also named Spaz for the time-being, due to her spastic nature.)

This little girl is the most playful, fun-loving little creature I have ever seen, and her crazy personality is just what I needed to warm my heart after losing Snowball and Snowflake. I absolutely adore her and love her to pieces. She cracks me up when I watch her run all over the house, slipping and sliding on the wood floors and sometimes banging right into the wall because she tries to take a turn too fast. She LOVES to eat, so breakfast and dinner time are a delight to watch her get so excited when she sees us open that can of food. She also loves to play peek-a-boo and hide-and-seek, hiding under a bed or chair and purposely coming out the opposite side when I bend down to get her. She's not much of  a snuggler yet because she's too active and squirmy, but when I wake up in the middle of the night, I find her curled up right beside me. :) 

I told Mike and the boys that all I wanted for Mother's Day was a new kitten, and she has definitely filled up my hurting mama heart.

She didn't like the idea of coming into a house with two big dogs, but little by little she is starting to accept them finally. Poor Mickey about went crazy when she wouldn't let him come anywhere near her. I think it's funny how this tiny little thing can put two big black dogs in their place with a simple hiss and a wave of her paw.