Monday, June 25, 2012

Making it...

Where to begin?  
I love having two boys.  But what I am slowly realizing is this:
Children (not child, as in one) but children are a true picture of our sin nature...God's redemptive purposes for us...and a true testament and challenge in how to abide in Christ.

THe Lord has been teaching me so much about this since Eli came home.  
This morning, he continued to teach me as a man rang my doorbell, and when I didn't answer after three rings (usually it is a homeless I don't answer when I'm home alone)...he came to the window, peeked in and started yelling at me to open the door, my dog was barking.  At the time, I was pumping (which I despise...and is necessary because sweet Finn still won't nurse...), so I wasn't going to get up anyway.  I was covered up, so he couldn't tell.  But I stormed out there, told him what I was doing (he felt weird, which was the reaction I was hoping dare he bang on my door as if that is okay?) and asked him what he needed.  He proceeded to lecture me about my dog barking.  Telling me that it is a nuisance to the public and he could take me to court over it.  In fact, he says, he could call the police.  At this point, I am getting mad.  I told him that I have a new baby from Ethiopia, and he is terrified of our dog.  Our dog just came back on Saturday, so this is still very new for him.  He said, "have you thought about a muzzle?  I would be scared of her too!".  I told him that she was a very nice dog, but she is big, and he is having trouble adjusting.  I told him I would look into a muzzle, and I'm doing the very best I can with two children.  He then asked me if I "had any help" or had a husband.....which is where I really had to ask God for patience.  

So, instead of punching him, I cried.
I could see that this was making him feel bad, and I couldn't help it.  I said, "Look, Sir, I am doing my very best.  i have a little baby and another child that we just adopted.  He is very scared of our dog, and I realize the barking is annoying.  I just went out and gave her a treat to quiet her down.  I am trying to figure this out".  He stammered off apologizing and telling me how he felt bad, he just wanted to make me aware.....

It was no fun.  
But, it reminded me that you can choose to see that BAD or the GOOD in every situation.
You can choose to hear that barking dog...and yell at someone...
or wonder if that dog is outside barking because they have a newborn, or a parent just died, or they are having marriage problems, etc.  
You can choose to be kind. Or to be rude.
So I'm glad I didn't match his mean-ness with the same.
I only wish I knew where he lived.
I would take him some cookies, with my dog sitting next to me.

I feel like I've been absent for a while. So, since I uploaded some cell phone pictures, and my kids are both sleeping (SIGH!)...let's share some of the past couple of months...

 Finn riding Hayley's new riding mower in texas...Brando and I at the wedding in Denton.

She looks so happy and beautiful! :)  

When we returned, we had three days until we left for Ethiopia for trip March.  Back when we only had one crib :)

 Finn did awesome on all the plane rides....we were so thankful for this bassinet so he had somewhere to sleep on the 12 and 17 hour flights...

 Then we arrived in ethiopia...the brothers met....the "played" together.....took naps together....took Eli's first stroller ride together...

 Finn loves his daddy!

One of Finn's first boat rides :)

Brandon's "rebellion from the army-ministry beard"

 Finn beginning to army crawl...around 7.5 months

Trying out the two cribs a couple different ways...

While we anticipate sweet big brother coming home...

 Finn took a trip to Butler, GA and rode on a big tractor :)
 We planned a couples wedding shower for our best friends, Bryan and Rebecca.  :)  It was a "competition shower" with costumes encouraged....

Finn was not a fan of the life jacket....(mom in the background was the house you were looking at for a while on sunset)

Finn discovering "flat brandon", which has since been retired to the trash.  This guy made a trip to a friend's wedding when Brandon's deployment was extended in 2007 and he couldn't make the wedding!

Finn's first hike...and our last family picture before Eli came along!

Date night....gotta have the big gulp dew...

 Finn loves the water....
 Trying to take advantage of date nights while we only had one child :) And we did....
 When Sweet Frog, a frozen yogurt place opened, Finn was one of the first in line!! It is the best place in town :)  This was a couple days before we left to get Eli...
 Brandon was the first to see Eli June....and we left him beginning of April...
And I followed several days later.  I was clearly distraught after nursing finn to bed....knowing I wouldn't see him for a week.  Turns out I had a right to be upset...because that was the last time I nursed him.  He STILL won't nurse....and I still offer often.

So...that's been our last couple of months, in iphone pics :)  

We are making it. 
Slowly but surely.
Tonight, Brandon woke Eli up from a nap at 5:30 (i had let him soothe himself to sleep for nap...he let out three squeals, then was asleep) and he was just ticked.  He screamed for about an that was no fun.  We tried food, drinks, walking, sitting, etc.  Bummer.  
In those moments I remind myself that patience is a virtue.
A fruit of the spirit.
I have to trust God to have patience with an hour of screaming :)  
Because this poor guy has been through a lot, and I want to be a safe place for him to be.

Happy Monday.
I'm going to watch the bachelorette. Guilty pleasure...
gray ric rac copy


  1. Thanks for sharing all your pics. Brando's beard still weirds me out. Eli is precious, I want to kick your door banging neighbor in the knee, Finn is massive! And I am so proud of you. Walking the walk. Praying for you dear mama!

  2. You're doing it!!! It doesn't always have to be pretty. And hoping for Shawn or Arie. ;) good job, amazing mama!

  3. Those costumes crack me up!
    Your doing great Mama! REALLY GREAT!
    (I know you know that- but it never hurts to hear it again!)

  4. Thanks for the update! You ARE DOING AN AMAZING JOB!!!! hang in there. And, I TOTALLY can sympathize with the nursing thing. Sully just stopped yesterday. Just. Stopped. (probably a teething thing, but OMGOSH it doesn't make it any easier) had success last night for a few minutes while he was sleeping. thats my only advice and, it's ok to cry about it. What an abrupt stop for you two :( praying for you all!!!

  5. I love that pic of you & Finn on the boat! I think I read he is only drinking milk out of a cup. I know bottles aren't the best for some babies when nursing, but I wonder if giving it to him in a bottle would help?? Maybe it would be a little more like nursing if he had to suck it out of a bottle?? That may be the worst advice ever. If someone smarter has told you to steer clear of bottles, then definitely follow their advice! When MB had bottles, the Tommee Tippee worked well for her-she would still nurse well after drinking pumped milk from out of one of those. Pumping stinks, I know! Anyway, Little Eli looks too precious for words-what a wonderful smile he has! I know you & Brando are doing awesome...even when it doesn't feel like it. Miss you!

  6. These are great pictures! I think you are doing a wonderful job. I can relate to some of those "at a loss moments" when nothing in my house would work except Baby Einstein dvds. Seriously. But I know you have a different circumstance with a little one who is probably trying to scream something like "I like you people very much, but this place looks and smells different than any place I have ever been. The food is different and I don't see any of those people who used to take care of me. It is fun here, and probably when I am older, I will realize how much better it is compared to where I came from, but right now, I don't know that yet, and I miss that other place that was familiar. But, as scared and confused as I may be I love looking at my pretty new Mama, with her shiny hair, and comforting arms, holding me - even when I seem like I hate it here. Because I don't hate it here, it is just different, and new, and soon I will love it."