SO .. we are really busy working on the Orphan TIcket Home Gala! Some have asked why I do what I do or where I find the time.
The only way I can respond besides showing them the precious face of my Maliah is this ...
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
SO .. we are really busy working on the Orphan TIcket Home Gala! Some have asked why I do what I do or where I find the time.
Posted by Cristie at 12:21 PM
What a whirwind the last week and a half has been!
Going back to the 16th of July, we left for some time at the beach. My sweet nephew Rhett was in town from Oklahoma to visit and so the entire family, including PiPa and Granny and Rhett made our way to the beach for a few days of playing in the sand, fishing and crabbing. The highlight of the entire trip was on an evening fishing trip. Doug, PiPa, Canyon and Rhett waded a good ways out in the surf. They each stood in water to their waste while fishing. I think it took more coordination that fishing skill to accomplish that in the middle of all the waves rolling in. My girls, Granny and I stayed on the beach playing in the sand and capturing some great pictures of the girls in the perfect light of the sun going down over the beach. This possibly is the BEST time of day on any beach. I looked over at one point to see Rhett moving back onto the beach out of the water and saw that his fishing pole was literally almost bent in half as he reeled in whatever it was on the end of his hook. Quickly we ran down with the camera to catch on camera the highlight of the night. After some time and with the help of PiPa, Rhett reeled in a huge stingray! WOW! What a site.
The poor thing had been caught once previously and had a hook in it's mouth and attached was a large weight. After some time working to remove all the things that weighed him down, and taking a few pictures to remember the night we pushed him back in the water and set him free. It was quite a site and crowds of people from all down the beach came to be a part of the fun.
Sunday brought us home to begin the preparations for Canyon and Dakota's first experience at T bar M camp. This year they embarked as "day campers" for the entire week. Between my friend Lori and I, we took turns driving them out in the mornings and home in the evenings ... a trip that took about 1 1/2 hours total. It was SO worth it though. The kids had the greatest time and at the end of the week we parents got to get just a small glimpse of what goes on each day and the impact this amazing camp has on kids when we joined in for "camp meeting" at the end of the day Friday.
Canyon and Dakota each were assigned to counselors with 4-5 children total in a group. Through these Christ centered kids (as literally the counselors are college age cuties) they participated in sports, swimming, painting toe nails and most importantly daily bible studies.
At the end of the week I asked each of them what they loved best about camp. I was completely surprised and thrilled to hear Canyon say "Bible study, Mom .. Mr. Jared does an incredible job at teaching us stories from the bible". Now, Jared, who is only 20 was quite impressive and we had the chance to see for ourselves on Friday this young man speak very eloquently about being "Warriors for God and Godly men". These things are all things that Daddy poors into Canyon each day but how cool was it for Canyon to hear those same words from a cool young gentleman that he looked up to!
Dakota's counselor was as cute as they come too. Miss Lindsay loved on each girl all week and Dakota had a blast in every moment of each day!
On Friday the counselors each presented each child with a certificate from the camp. On the bottom they gave each child an "outstanding characteristic" award and a scripture that pertained to that character that they saw in our child. It was really cool.
Let me brag on my kids a moment ....
Dakota was given the award for Kindness. Miss Lindsay spoke of Dakota's heart and how she displayed such amazing Kindness to every little girl in her group and in others. Miss Lindsay said that Dakota was eager to help her friends and put them before herself. Her scripture was Ephesians 4:32 "Be kind ad compassionate to one another, forgiving each other just as in Christ God forgave you.". My Dakota, we are so proud of you! Kindness is a fruit of the spirit we strive to behold and at 6 .. you are already displaying it! May the Lord continue his work in you to become a lighthouse to the world!
Coach Jared gave Canyon an "outstanding characteristic" award as well. As we listened to Jared speak of Canyon I couldn't help to fight back tears. If you have ever been around Canyon you would know and recognize that the kids displays exceptional athletic talent. I can say that without trying to brag because in almost every circumstance others have made note of it and yet, as someone who doesn't know a lot about sports ... I didn't ever really realize it. Canyon truly has natural athletic talents and watching him in each sport is absolutely breath taking. As a parent, however, we also know that their are kids who have such abilities but become prideful and arrogant of the talents the Lord has blessed them with. This is definitely something Doug and I pray over! As Coach Jared presented Canyon his award he began by talking about how exceptionally talented Canyon was in athletics. He then went on to say that Canyon had a very bright future with those gifts. But the best part was when Jared recognized that although Canyon held such gifts he was incredibly humble in them and took great efforts to encourage his friends and peers as they too worked on refining their skills. He went on to say that as a kid who participated on many teams himself that he often saw boys like Canyon become arrogant and prideful but that Canyon displayed great humility in all he did. Canyon's characteristic was "Aspiration" as Jared believed Canyon would someday do something great in athletics but that in doing so he would be a man of God! His verse was Phillipians 4:8. "Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things". I love this verse. It is one dear to me from college and my years in my sorority at Texas A&M. Think about the verse and it's deeper meaning for a moment with me. In this verse Paul is making recognition of the influence of one's thoughts on their life. He is saying that what a person allows to occupy his mind will sooner or later determine his speech and his actions. The combination of virtues listed is sure to produce a wholesome thought pattern, which in return will result in a life of moral and spiritual excellence! Isn't this something we each should take heed in. My Canyon, at 8, is doing such a thing. I pray the Lord will continue to keep him a humble servant .. putting others before himself and the only thing that is prideful in him is one thing ... that he is a warrior for God who strives to proclaim the Gospel to all he meets!
Man oh man, Jared ... at 20 ... hit it on the head and has given me as Mom a scripture to pray through and instill in my sweet young boy. I love that!
Saturday of this past weekend we also partook in a 12 hour day of Schlitterbaughn. Can you say, CROWDED! One thought for this day .. don't do Schlitterbaughn on a weekend! Bad idea. Kids had a great time and so did we, however, next time ... we'll hope we get to work on another spiritual gift other than "PATIENCE" when we go.
Sunday brought the meeting for the Orphans Ticket Home Gala. I will definitely address this more in the future. I just want to say, however, that I was so pleased at those who attended and their willingness to jump in and serve! The Gala is going to be incredible and I know the Lord is orchestrating something bigger in our community with the one thing closest to his heart, orphans! So ... go check out the website on where the money will be going and help us pray for the evening of November 21, 2008! www.orphanstickethome.org
Enjoy some photos! I don't think they need a ton of explanation!
Posted by Cristie at 6:21 AM
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Well, I am a delinquent Mom to say the least. To make a very long story short, last year on the one year anniversary of our "Gotcha day" for Maliah I sent a special package to the orphanage and her Nanny's. I wrote a letter to them telling them about her first year with us and all she was learning and doing. I also sent some pictures so they could see how much she has grown.
It is my hearts desire to build a relationship with Xu Wen Comprehensive Institute's staff and director and that some day we take the time and have the chance to return. If you haven't been to our travel blog then you may not know the whole history, however, let's just say that not one person ... not one family had EVER stepped foot inside of Maliah's orphanage until we arrived in China. Only by the Grace of our Lord and his divine intervention ... our five Dads in our group made the 7 hour drive each way into the deepest depths of China to see where our girls once lived. The Mommy's all stayed back at the hotel as the men were making the trip in one day and it would have been just too much for the babies. Doug described each and everything thing he saw and felt in great detail and took some vide of Xu Wen's exterior, staff, Maliah's personal Nanny and the town in which she was from. The day has changed everything for future families and has opened doors only the Lord could open. Truly .... by God's Grace ....
Some day we would love to return and take the whole family to visit Maliah's birthplace. We never want to deny Maliah her heritage and at the same time, we want her to know that the Lord knew when he created her that he had us in mind. It is a balancing act this road we walk. We want her to ask as many questions as she needs to. We want to be open with her life's story and the testimony of God's Grace over her life with her. We want her to value her Chinese Ancestry while at the same time we know that she is truly an American Girl now. We also don't want to shove it down her throat nor make her feel any different or set apart from our other kids. BALANCE, and something we're taking one day at a time.
So, anyways, last Gotcha Day I sent the package and in mid November arrived in our mailbox a letter from Xu Wen China addressed to "Xu Xioa Wen". You can imagine my surprise when I checked the mail that day. I opened it immediately with great anticipation and excitement, however, I obviously couldn't read a word (or character) of the mandarin that was so beautifully written. I put the letter up for safe keeping with intent to have Adele, a precious Chinese woman who does translation, translate it for me very soon. Days and months passed and I never forgot about the letter but never made the extra few minutes to send it to Adele. This past week, however, I took out the letter and contacted Adele to eagerly see what it said.
Today arrived my translated letter.
I loved it! It's not long or chalked full of details to cling to but it was enough to let me know that Maliahs' Nanny's genuinely knew her and desire to know how she is doing. In the letter they speak of seeing her for the first time again after the day that they placed her in my arms. Their words touched me for some reason. You need to understand that "Gotcha Day" for Maliah was very emotional. She wouldn't settle and cried unconsolably in my arms. One of the Nanny's kept coming and taking her from me to comfort her and as she was trying to console her she would say "sh sh sh" to Maliah and then say "Mama, Mama" as she patted on my back. She would then hand Maliah back to me and watch with great concern as Maliah continued to mourn and grieve. This cycle continued for a better part of an hour.
The next day when we arrived to complete the actual adoption, we were pleasantly surprised to find the staff and Nanny's at the Civil Affairs office once again. As we walked in, I carried Maliah on my chest in a snuggly. She had fallen fast asleep on the bus ride over and so she was very content in my arms. I had dressed her in a pink and brown Gymboree pant outfit and she was wearing a huge pink bow headband on her head. She just looked too cute for words. As we walked into the room that we had been in the day prior, the Nanny who had tried to console Maliah the day prior spotted her. She made a dash over to me and as she pointed Maliah out to the other Nanny's and spoke something to them she patted her little bottom in the snuggly, rubbed her sweet cheeks and smiled at me as if to tell me how happy and relieved she was to see her well.
SO ... that being said, when I read the letter and they mentioned that day (A full year later), it seemed confirmation of what I have felt in my heart as has so many Xu Wen Mommy's ... that our girls were well loved, cared for and cherished until they were placed in our arms. Our girls left footprints on the hearts of those woman and I believe that each child they care for ... as they leave and find their place in a home ... is never forgotten. I know that for my Xu Xiao Wen!
So ... I thought I'd share my letter. It is special to us and someday, I know it will be special to a beautiful little girl who can tell of the testimony of Grace, love and mercy of her Lord Jesus!
Dear Xu Xiao Wen and your adoptive parents,
Greetings to you!
We were very happy to receive your letter and photos. The nannies that took care of Xiao Wen passed your letter and photos to each other and enjoyed them. We feel very comforted and happy to know that she is having a wonderful life.
We remember that when Xiao Wen was at our institute, she was thin and she loved to smile. The minute we played with her, she would turn her head and smile. She looked very lovely. When you came to the adoption center to process the adoption paperwork on the second day, you dressed her up so beautifully that we could not recognize her then. She was really pretty!
Xu Fan was also from our institute. She was adopted at the same time.
We sincerely hope that you will bring her to visit us in a few years. We look forward to the arrival of that day. Xiao Wen will definitely change a lot then. We will definitely not be able to recognize her then. We feel very excited to think about the day that you will come to visit us in the future. We are waiting for it.
Last, we want to wish your whole family to be happy!
Xu Wen County Social Welfare Institute
November 8, 2007
Posted by Cristie at 7:54 PM
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
I have mentioned this a few times ... why ... well, because right now it's on my mind and my heart constantly! Currently I am working on organizing a Gala to be held at Community Bible Church here on November 21, 2008. This gala will benefit an amazing campaign that my placing agency www.awaa.org is working on. The money donated and raised through OTH will benefit four major initiatives through AWAA. I believe in them ... I believe in the 5,229 children it impacts and I believe in the bible and what Jesus told me in James 1:27 "take care of the orphans ....! DO YOU?
Let me tell you briefly where the money is going:
1.) Working to give children the identity and paperwork needed to place them into the adoption system ... (ID4C.org)
2.) Creating an exchange program that will give older children the opportunity to come and spend time with a family in the states and thus increasing their chances of finding a home.
3.) Opening transitional homes in Ethiopia that will give AWAA the opportunity to better care for the orphans being adopted into American famlies.
4.) Developing new adoption programs in Vietnam, India, Brazil and Bolivia
So, the night is going to be SO exciting! First off, to lead off we have BIlly and Cindy Foote and their band to lead worship. You will know them as the song writers of "You are My King", "You are God Alone", "Sing to the King" and more. They are incredible and can lead worship like none other. I know them as family ... Cindy is my precious friend and her daughter, Libby and Maliah are from the same orphanage. We received them in our arms on the same day and now ... we live 5 minutes apart. They are in the process of adopting Aria Hope from Ethiopia. You can follow them to Ethiopia (and me as I get the honor of making the trip with Cindy) at www.adoptingaria.blogspot.com.
You can check them out here .... www.billyfooteband.com. They also have a new CD out .... I am sure if you come ... you will hear a few LIVE!
Secondly, an amazing and brilliant writer who loves the heart of the Lord will be our keynote speaker. Tom Davis is the author of well known books like "Red Letters" and "Fields of the Fatherless". He will be speaking on the orphan crisis. Check him out and a glimpse of him here....
Brian Luis, founder of AWAA, will also be speaking that night. He will give the four AWAA initiatives "legs". It's a can't miss! I've personally never got to meet him in person so for me ... it's a chance to say THANK YOU ... because of his heart, his vision, I am a Mom to my Maliah!
LASTLY ... we will be having a SILENT AUCTION. YES ... that also means I'm looking for great donations from business's and all you people out there who have fabulous products to donate! I will most definitely highlight your business by the item! Contact me if you have something you'd like to auction. Remember ... AWAA is a non-profit so everything is tax deductible!
So, anyways, I am soliciting your prayers. I have done so before ... you have listened and I felt them. But now ... I need more (aren't I so greedy haha). I am starting to feel overwhelmed with the magnitude of it all! All of the details, to do's, etc. It's going to be an incredible night ... i know that without a doubt! Will you pray for us?
We will be having a meeting in our home on July 27th for some folks who have said "yes", they'll pitch in in some way and help me out with all the rest of the details I haven't already done. Pray for that night! Pray that I can deliver my vision and that folks will fill in their names and take a role. This will be SO helpful to me!
Lastly, pray ... pray the Lord would bring many to hear the message. I pray he blows us away ... I think he will! This is the heart of our Lord ... he tells us so many times to take care of the orphans. This night is HIS night ... pray that he would shove me aside and do his thing!
Oh and also, tickets will be going on sale in a few months (beginning of September). You can purchase tickets online or through me. Don't worry ... I will post a link when it's time! Also, if your a reader and say "man, I live so far away but I believe in those 5,229 children too" then don't be sad! You too can help! We will have a ticket called "Flying for the cause". You will have the opportunity to purchase a ticket or make a donation without being there! You will get to change the life of a child from your comfortable chair at home! How easy is that!
SO .... I continue my "to do's" and I continue praying for the Lord's night! It's sure to be amazing!
Posted by Cristie at 12:28 PM
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Every woman was once a little girl and every little girl holds in her heart dreams. Watch your daughters a while and think back to when you were little ... dreams of romance, beauty, being swept away, being rescued, the princess, the irreplaceable role in a great adventure!
YES! I love that and I love watching my girls and seeing them act out their own roles and their own hearts desires!
Last spring I had the honor of walking through "Captivating" with 3 other woman of God. As we read through the book, we met each week discussing the questions and working through each chapter ... working to rescue our hearts, to become alive and find the life that the Hero of each of our stories designed us to live. In October we embarked on 4 days at Frontier Ranch where we were simply "Captivated" by the team of beautiful woman from Ransomed Heart and the message the Lord had set in each of their hearts to share with us. Of course you cannot beat the beauty of the Colorado rockies and that alone was worth the trip, however, there was something else there that has changed me ... changed my desires and my pursuit in life. It's a daily struggle and sometimes I loose sight of it, however, this week I have been reminded by that desire through many circumstances.
Here we are .... the girls and Stasi Eldridge!
And yet another ... looking out over the beautiful Rockies!
Stasi Eldridge and her amazing team of woman spent those four days walking us through the romantic story of our creation, and how the Lord sees us ... pursues us, desires us, romances us. Each session you were left with a question and sent away ... to be with God to hear what HE had to say to you! On one of those quiet moments overlooking the mountain valley I sat in tears and praised the Lord for what he had already done in my life. He had already been my prince ... rescuing me~
Many woman do not know but I struggled with an eating disorder for over five years (my whole college career). Even after I married Doug, I struggled. In fact, a part of that story was the ultimate rescue of a man who pursued me and in the end, led me to share with him my deepest and darkest secret. There were many days and many moments in days where I wondered if the Lord had forgotten me and left me on a shelf to walk that journey alone. During those years I came to realize that the enemy was very real and his schemes were ugly, deceitful! Even more ugly are the accusations and the false messages over what He tells you of who you are! It was a shameful five years. Ones that I am not proud of. BUT ... the end of the story is that the Lord restored my heart and SET ME FREE from the grips the enemy had on me! I was once held captive and then he made me whole.
In those moments in the mountains of Colorado I was reminded of those days. It is perhaps the darkest hours that I have yet held in my life. While their were glimmers of hope and restoration on different days, ultimately the trial and wilderness was lonely and desperate. The enemy was so LOUD!
As I sat journaling in the mountains I clearly heard the voice of the Lord as if he were there sitting with me. I do believe he was and this he said ...
"You captivate me" I also heard so plainly a reminder of the promise he gives each of us-the promise he gave ME... that he will restore us if we seek him with our whole heart.
As I looked up and looked across the valley that was sitting right at my feet the Lord showed up greater than anything I had ever seen. You see, the message that Stasi had just given was about healing our wounds so that we could go forward, move forward and be the woman he created us to be and LIVE. I was reminded in those moments that he had already healed me, SET ME FREE, and yet on many days I do not give him my whole heart. I looked out over the Valley and he reminded me of his promises. He also reminded me that on some days, I have failed to live up to mine .. giving him my WHOLE heart!
Would you like to see the Lord and how he showed up?
Can you even believe that? Just look at how BIG God! There was no rain, no glimmer of rain in site. The sun was out, the weather PERFECT and yet ... look what he showed me! Tears filled my eyes and I wept as I sat there. He is SO big ... SO REAL!
So this past week Doug and I have had several conversations about the "heart". As we sat with some precious friends on Saturday night, the husband asked Doug what he thought the "heart" meant. He asked me the same thing. Yes, we know .... Love the Lord with all of your heart, mind and soul. But what does that look like? I've seen it and I know when I am seeing it. I feel it in certain places and in the midst of certain people. I feel what I desire and long for around certain folks. I can't explain it though ... I can't define it. It's all God!
You can't truly explain it ... it's not a "to do", it's not "a church program", it's not "strategic", it's not "created" it's not any of those things but I do know that it effects the church in a HUGE way! I long for it! It's a daily pursuit!
Did you know that "Bridegroom" simply means "fiance". Lover. YES ... it does. When I first heard that concept and thought about how many times Jesus calls himself the Bridegroom I went "EEEEW". I couldn't get it, I couldn't comprehend it.
BUT ... in the mountains of Colorado he showed me just what he meant. He isn't speaking of physical intimacy. Remember ... it means "Fiance". If that's the case, then biblically, those things should have not transpired that makes my mind go "EEEEW". No, it means the intimacy a couple holds when they are engaged. That closeness ... that desire for one another in every moment of their day. Do you remember being engaged? Oh man, I do like it was yesterday! I remember aching to see Doug and aching to feel him hold me. I remember that nothing else in the world mattered if he was with me. THAT'S what Jesus wants from us ... that heart! ALL OF US! EVERY MOMENT OF EVERY DAY!
So, as I watched my girls this week I watched how they too were chasing after something. As they dressed up in their dress up clothes they looked for the answer to their question "Am I lovely". As Dakota plays with all of her toy horses, she takes them on great adventures - that girl has some grand imagination! Saturday, Dakota had the opportunity to get on one of those magestic creatures. As she sat on the back of the horse and began to ride her face beamed. She was on an adventure ... she was the BEAUTY! You could see it all over her face ... she was living an "irreplaceable role" in the heart of her 6 year old heart!
Man on man, I'm 34 and still .... I look for that ... still I need that ... to be pursued, rescued, a part of a great adventure!
The heart of woman! Do you want it ... do you want THAT! I DO!
So check out my beauties! Will you oooh and aaaah with me. Aren't they delightful! Aren't they beautiful! Aren't they everything the Lord wants them to be! They are irreplaceable and he too desires THEM ... their HEARTS!
Aren't they lovely?
Dakota living an adventure
Isn't she a BEAUTY!
Posted by Cristie at 8:58 PM
Thursday, July 10, 2008
So, as I posted below, I am now officially a GREAT Aunt. I think that ages me by a few years ... to be considered GREAT and all as we aren't talking about my character - to which some may consider Great (haha).
Funnier, however, is that my Bro is well ... GRAMPS, GRANDPA, PIPA, PAPA or whatever it is that little Miss Madalyn declares is his "official" Grandpa title one day. I will say, however, that it will be so fun to poke at the old man with this. Now, as stated below, this isn't a funny scenario .. .my sweet nephew becoming a Daddy so young, however, it is what it is. I talked with my sister-in-law (well, former as she and my bro are no longer married for like 6 years now) and she said that she is so proud of Crew already and that he has taken beautifully to being a Daddy. He is taking sweet care of his little ladies and all we can do is pray that the Lord gives him all he needs to do the job well. He is now a head of the household and hopefully, someday, I pray that will translate into being the "spiritual" leader.
I say someday as you have to love the Lord and desire to be leading your family into a direction that is moving closer each day to Him to be a true spiritual leader. The world, even those who don't know the Lord, identifies that the man is the leader of the family (well ... the liberal media is working hard to tell us something different ... so I digress) but that doesn't make him the spiritual leader necessarily. I don't believe at this time that Crew truly gets what Christ did for him the day he died on that cross. (I may be wrong and I hope I am as I do know that Dawyna (his girfriend) has been pretty involved in a church and youth group and he has been attending so I pray that he has the faith and desire I speak of).
As a follower of Christ, I know that their is only one way to the Father and into an eternal salvation (heaven) with him. The Bible tells us so in John 14:6 "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." So, this is our saving FAITH - A knowledge and acceptance of who Jesus was and what he did on the cross to pay the price for our sins. I share that so that those of you who may question what I mean when I speak of Crew being a true spiritual leader know from what angle I am coming. I am not saying that as a man he can't lead but without Christ ...he cannot lead the way the Lord intends a family to be led. It is by Faith I rest and know these things.
Notice I capitalize FAITH!
We must be very careful to understand faith as Paul (in the bible) uses the word, because he ties faith so closely to salvation. It is not something we must do in order to earn salvation - if that were true, then faith would be just one more deed, and Paul clearly states that human deeds can NEVER save us (Galatians 2:16 "know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ"). Instead, faith is a gift God gives us BECAUSE he is saving us (Ephesians 2:8 "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast."). It is God's grace, not our faith, that saves us. In his mercy, however, when he saves us he gives us faith - a relationship with his Son that helps us become like him (and the one thing that will be valuable to any man who is leading a family). Through the faith he gives us, he carries us from what would be our death into eternal life (John 5:24 "I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life")
All of that a digression, I know, from what this entire blog started out as ... a celebration of GRAMPS! I just felt that I must give some clarity to what I pray for my sweet nephew. I pray that he comes to know and understand the Grace God gave him on the cross. When he does, the Lord will give him the Faith and he will begin to knit a relationship with the son that will in turn begin to make Crew more like him the closer he becomes to him. This in return will impact his entire little family and most importantly his precious daughter who will be looking to her own Father for those answers.
SO ... back to Gramps! I thought I'd share a few pictures of the old man. I haven't yet received any of him holding his new granddaughter. Great Granny will be on her way tomorrow to pick up "Uncle Rhett" to bring him here for a visit and I have given her the assignment of taking pictures of all of them. But I thought it would be fun for those of you who don't know Clint to see just why I can laugh ... LOUDLY ... that he would be called Grandpa! At 38 he is in the most phenominal shape! He races in mountain bike races, runs, works out and has the physique of a 20 year old. I think little Miss Madalyn has the cutest Grandpa around with enough energy to keep her very entertained and busy on their special visits!
Here's the old man at Christmas. He was dressed and all ready for his big date with the gal he is dating.
Here he is at the Beach in May. Wow .. he looks so old! I've never quite seen a grandpa who looks like that. HA
Yep, it's confirmed ... he will soon need a walker or cain to get around.
Posted by Cristie at 11:54 AM
Monday, July 7, 2008
O.K. so really .... I am a GREAT AUNT! My precious nephew, Crew and his girlfriend, Dawnya had a baby girl this afternoon at 3:57 pm. She weighs 7 pounds 6oz. and is 20 inches long. Her name is Madalyn Nicole Gill.
So, exciting and scary all at the same time. My sweet nephew is only 18 and so is Dawnya. Crew will be a Senior in High School next year and Dawnya just graduated. Already, however, Crew is working hard to take care of his little family. He works all the time up at a golf course helping care for the greens etc. He saved his money and bought Dawnya a ring and proposed. She accepted and so in the future, we will also see wedding bells for this young couple. While we know that God's plan for our families and our children is to be married first, we also know he has a plan for every child and he has a plan for beautiful Madalyn. As we recently shared with our own kids the up and coming addition to our family, we explained that Crew and Dawyna went against what the Lord has designed for a family. His desire is to see his children get married and THEN partake in the beauty of intimacy and procreation. That was his design but we also know that no child is a mistake and so with that we are excited and thrilled to bring into our family the newest Gill! My brother is a GRANDPA at 38! WOW! I thought I'd share the first pictures of our newest blessing today. The young man holding the little angel is the proud Daddy. As you think of them, please pray that the Lord would give them the tools to parent her and that he would bind this little family together. Please pray that Crew would fall madly in love with Jesus and that he could be the spiritual leader to his family that the Lord intends him to be! Crew is a very special young man with a huge heart! He is so great with kids and has always been incredible with mine. Though he is so young, I know that he will love this baby with all that he has! May the Lord guide him and Dawyna into his ways and may this baby girl be parented with the guidance of our Lord and Savior!
Drum roll please ....... introducing ... Madalyn Nicole Gill!
That finger sucking must come from the Gill side. That is EXACTLY what Dakota did the moment she was born. At six ... you can still find her with her fingers in her mouth when she's tired. When she saw that picture she giggled and said that little Madalyn loves her fingers too!
Below is the proud Daddy and his new baby girl
There is Daddy and Uncle Rhett (Crew's younger brother and my precious nephew)
So now, I just need a picture of the proud Grandma and Grandpa. I can't wait until I see the look on my brother's face when he is holding that little girl. He was never blessed with a daughter .... just boys. I wonder how quickly she'll have him wrapped around her little princess finger. Dakota adores Uncle Clint (now Gramps) and loves to play with him. They have a special little relationship. I always tease when he's coming for a visit and ask if he's been "training". She can wear him out as she doesn't give him one break while he's here. We'll see how quickly little Miss Madalyn steals his heart too!
Posted by Cristie at 4:38 PM
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Well, first, let me start by saying ... Thank you for the prayers for my sweet Dakota. We felt them today as we had our awaited appointment with the Orthopedic specialist. To say the Lord answered is an understatement. We got there with ease and the appointment went as well as can be expected. Dr. Warman made Dakota first walk down the hall and show him how she can walk on her heels (making heel strikes). He remarked, NICE JOB! Then he asked her to walk like she likes to walk .. on the toes. She didn't .. she walked like a pro. I looked at him and we both giggled. Little stinker. He then went through a round of seeing how far he could stretch her feet back and all sorts of diagnostic stuff to rule out neurological consequences and reasons for her habbit ... NONE detected. YES! He did say she was at the breaking point of where he would "cast" someone for braces, however, he said, whatever your doing ... keep it up as it is keeping her in the ability to heel strike and out of those casts. We have a road ahead. He really emphasized stretching her and how tight she was. As she grows their is a very strong possibility that if she does not break her habit and stretch enough that her achilles would shorten/tighten and we'd end up being braced. BUT I am going to see the positive here ... keep doing what we're doing ... stretching, reminding her to walk heel/toe and PRAYING my friends, PRAYING! That we can do!
The second part of my day I had the sheer pleasure of taking all three of my kids to the pediatricians office as it seems my little almond eyed beauty is developing an allergic reaction to something. We have some sort of skin rash/reaction going on. We were ushered into our 5X5 cell to wait for the pediatrician (one I don't normally see in that office) where we sat and sat and sat. Well, I should say that Canyon and I sat. The girls ... well, they bounced, hit, kicked, screeched, laughed, and did all the creating they could do in a 5X5 space. After a gazillion settle downs and 45 minutes of waiting I decided to forego that thought and let them disrupt. At least then, someone would notice us. It worked! A few minutes later the nurse peeked her head in and said "Is everything o.k. in here ... we're noticing a lot of chaos from your room". HAHAHAHA. I wasn't sure if I wanted to jump out of my chair and yell at her or kiss her for taking note of us. I responded calmly "nothings the matter, it's just a little difficult to contain and entertain three bustling kids with 3 blocks, in a 5X5 jail cell for 45 minutes (with a smile ... grin)". HA ... take that. Within a very few short minutes ... the doc arrived.
Oh and the prognosis, we're on Zyrtec for 12 days, hydrocortisone creme and a prayer to see if that resolves our issue. On top of that, no milk products for 10 days. We also have had horrible diapers since bringing home Maliah. We're want to rule out that it's a milk intolerance. Wish us luck! We gave her soy milk tonight and she handed it back to me and said with a funny look on her face "I don't yike dat". It could be a long 10 days and even worse would be if that is our diaper culprit.
So, that's the update from the med clinic of the Martine home. Once again, never a dull moment with three kids.
Posted by Cristie at 4:55 PM