Our life is nothing short of an adventure...

Wind in our hair and screams of delight but also unpredictable turns and unknown outcomes. We are a family of six; Dave, Susie, Nate, Jake, Sam, and Bella.

God has been faithful in our marriage and through the birth and blessings of our boys.

God has been faithful during our adoption journey and united Bella with us in May of 2008. We were privileged to visit with Bella's birth mother; therefore, Bella's family in Guatemala will always be dear to our hearts.

On October 16, 2008, Bella was diagnosed with ALL Leukemia. We are now battling the disease with 2 years and 3 months of treatment. We believe God will continue to be faithful!

Our family is committed to living life to the fullest...even on the hard days. Thank you for checking in and journeying with us!

Saturday, March 29, 2008


Turning 40!!!!! Yes, that's right, the big 40 for me will be in 1 week! Above are 2 of my 4 very amazing and wonderful brothers. Tom and I are two years apart but share our birthdays 1 week apart, so our family gathered last night to celebrate both birthdays on his actual day. He may be younger....but he has more grey hair than me. John, the other handsome brother on the left will turn 34 a couple weeks after me. I just love these men of mine.

In case I have not shared, I want to take a moment and RAVE about my family. I am the oldest child of 6 children, 4 brothers, 1 sister, and 1 brother-in-law and 2 sister-in-laws that I consider my siblings as well. Between myself and the two brothers above, we have graced our parents with 12 GRANDCHILDREN! Yes, we are an Irish Catholic family. They are my greatest supporters and very best friends and I thank God daily for each and every one of them.

Next week, we (my husband and our boys) travel to St Louis to visit my sister and her husband and meet my new blogging friend Cheri! I am so very excited about this. A perfect way to pass the time of waiting for PINK.

As for my wonderful blogging buddies, Pam, Stacy and Meghan....I check your blogs daily just praying to see "OUT"! I am so standing with all of you in faith and belief. As for you Cheri.....CONGRATS on your PGN OUT! Cant wait to celebrate with you next week!

Blessings to all!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Birth Certificate in Hand!

It's official, Bella now shares our last name!!!! We received word today that her birth certificate is in the hands of our legal team. Thank you Lord, thank you!

Monday, March 24, 2008


It is with awe and thanksgiving that I get to post that we HAVE our MIXCO BIRTH CERTIFICATE! I am completely overwhelmed by God....how desperately I want to share all that He has taught us in the this wait, but today, all I can do is PRAISE HIM...for Bella is coming home! As soon as we have a copy of the official doc, I plan to post a couple pictures, so please check back in.

With all my heart....I love you Lord.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Believe and Receive.....

"....whoever believes in him shall not perish....."

"Jesus' invitation seems to simple. We gravitate to to other verbs. Work has a better ring to it. "Whoever works for him will be saved." Satisfy fits nicely. "Whoever satisfies him will be saved." But believe? Shouldn't I do more?

We expect a more proactive assignment, to have to conjure up a remedy for our sin. Some mercy seekers have donned hair shirts, climbed cathedral steps on their knees, or traversed hot rocks on bare feet.

Others of us have written our own Bible verse: "God helps those who help themselves". We'll fix ourselves, thank you. we'll make up for our mistakes with contributions, our guilt with busyness. We'll overcome failures iwth hard work. We'll find salvation the old-fashioned way; we'll earn it.

Christ, in contrast says to us: "Your part is to trust. Trust me to do what you cant".

You take similar steps of trust daily. You believe the chair will support you, so you set your weight on it. You believe water will hydrate you, so you swallow it. You have faith the doorknob will work, so you turn it. You regularly trust power you cannot see to do a work you cannot accomplish. Jesus invites you to do the same with him.

Just Him. Not any other leader. Not other wounded and sickened souls. Not even you. You cant fix you. Look to Jesus....and believe."

By Max Lucado in 3:16

On this day we celebrate Easter, a day of Eternal Victory for all those who BELIEVE! Through His life, death and resurrection, we have God's Kingdom not only for eternity, but here on earth...if we just believe and receive.

Our journey of adoption has taught us so very much, but one of the greatest and the most rewarding is to believe God. Believe Him to be bigger, greater and purposeful. We have also learned to joy and peace in trusting God. Tomorrow marks business day 37 in waiting for our mixco birth certificate, 8 weeks to the date of being submitted. A reminder that God is in control, and although the wait makes no sense to us, He has a greater purpose, and by choice, we will and are believing! Did God cause corruption in Mixco Civil Registry? absolutely NOT! Will He use it for His greater purpose and glory, you better believe it. Are we ready to be part of that glory? AMEN! I have stood in the moment of His glory before, and it is breath taking. Today brings a new hope and the same promise that He is in this adoption.

We choose to "wait upon the Lord', not because we want to, believe me, our flesh wants to run the other way, do whatever it takes to get that BC, but our need for the Lord and His presence in our life is greater, so we choose to trust Him and His promises, for they have never "left us or forsaken us". God is greater, and when all is said and done, I believe we will know the purpose for this wait. As for the plan?......that's the exciting part of the adventure....we have no idea what wonderful things God still has in mind for our family, but I know that I know that the plans He has for us are plans to "prosper us and not harm us".

I will love you Lord, in all things, I choose you.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A New Day, A New Week

I am writing on the eve of a new day, a new week. As you all know, the lack of results or news last week was heart wrenching for me. I was truly broken, but like all the other moments in my life of brokenness, God came in and scooped me up and gave me the strength to move on. Believe me, I am an over, under, around or through kind of person, this is truly the strength of God. I enjoyed my weekend with my kids and Dave and took time to reflect and search my soul. Tonight, I rest in the plan of God. We are all at perfect peace. Our confession, belief and expectation remains the same, “Bella’s Mixco Birth Certificate is approved today with no previews”. Yet, what ever transpires this week, we know we will be ok. If all we could expect from God was his grace, it would be enough. But his love is bigger, we know we serve a mighty God and He delights in us. We are to expect and believe for the unexpected, we believe in the miracle of Bella’s Birth Certificate, and we plan to share good news with you soon. God is bigger!

Again, THANK YOU for your love, prayer and support. I have had several emails, phone calls and messages this weekend bringing me to complete tears that God has provided me with an amazing family and group of friends. God has used every one of you to help hold us up.

Blessings and love to all

Friday, March 14, 2008

Holding to His Promises

This Friday comes to an end and marks business day 34 (7 weeks) of waiting for our Birth Certificate that will allow us to bring Bella home. We heard nothing this week, no release phone call from our agency. My heart is broken, its been a tough night. But I choose as does my family to stand firm in the truth of God’s promises and truths. It makes no sense to my flesh that we are going through this difficult wait, but we believe in a purpose and plan greater than us. Although I ache to hold my precious daughter, she is God’s child first….and the reality is, she will never remember this time, and like child birth, God will erase the actual pain we are feeling. We still hold firm that Bella’s Birth Certificate is APPROVED today with no previews. Monday brings a new hope to the wait. Were ok, Im ok, I will be GREAT, and “His mercies are new every day”. For tonight, Dave and I plan to go out and have some much needed one on one time. Tomorrow we have no basketball, no civic theatre, no NOTHING! Just time to be a family of 5 and do what we want with no naps to worry about, so we will come up with something fun with the boys.

Thanks for your continued love and support and prayers….it truly holds us up, especially me.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

No News...Still Waiting for BC

Still now news on day 33 (6 1/2 weeks).....no news means more room for God's Glory!!!! It was absolutely a day of defense. I was awoken this morning with severe stomach pains, fortunately, they subsided after about 3 hours and I was able to go on with my day. Believe me, I dont doubt for 2 seconds that it was a direct hit from the devil, but I was having no part of it and prayed myself right out of it. The rest of the day was spent living life and my heart having moments of raciness with every phone ring, by 6:30 pm, I was having an emotional down. This is hard.....waiting is hard.....faithfulness can be hard, but God is better, God is worth the wait and His glory is worth everything. I continue to stand in the belief that our Bella's Birth Certificate has been approved with no previews today! I live every moment of every day in the expectancy of God, and I know that I know He will be victorious. Thanks for checking in friends, "His mercies are new everyday", and tomorrow is a new day.

Blessings and Hope to all of you

Monday, March 10, 2008

Dying to Self

"Adoption is not for the faint hearted". I cant think of a time in my life when I was facing a bigger giant than this one. The past 5 weeks have been an emotional roller coaster for me, and therefore, my family. When we decided to adopt in May 2006, we knew international adoption would require us to TRUST God....little did we know at that time just how much. For the most part, we have been able to stay faithful to that trust, to the conviction that God's way was best and His plan was perfect, but with the recent unfoldings of Mixco CR, it became increasingly difficult on our flesh. The enemy moved in swiftly filling my head with doubt, fear and worry leading to sleepless nights, irritability, paralyization....and I never even seen it coming. I knew what I was doing was wrong, I kept saying " I know what this, I am not going here, "He who is in me is greater than He who is in the world". But with news from our agency that 5 families received their BC's and 5 received "previews" last week, the Giants seemed overbearing, insurmountable, un-defeatable. I literally had a night where I was so angry with the enemy I was waking my husband up in the middle of the night kicking off blankets and screaming " I HATE YOU DEVIL"! Crying out for God, "please help me win over this fear....I know better". In the morning, the guilt came on....how could I question such an awesome God? And it occurred to me what happened. I had taken my focus off God's will and plan and put it on mine, and in doing so, I lost my peace. I got so concerned over my desire to have my daughter home that I lost sight of God's perfect timing. This journey was never about me, our family or our sweet Bella, it's about God and His glory. There is so much more to this journey, too many to list as we have experienced many.

So tonight I post that I am human. I stumble and fall just like everyone else, yet through Him, I get back up. I know what it feels like to fight war, I did it...it was exhausting. And although I won the battle of my mind, I must stand guard, "for the enemy comes roaming like a lion to kill, steal and destroy". Tonight, I rest in under His wing and trust His ways and allow Him to carry out His plan.

Tomorrow marks day 30 for us in Mixco CR, by law, they are required to release our file on this day. Generally, they have been coming out around day 33. My heart is at peace, a few heart races occasionally, but I surrender my will and plan to knowing that His time is perfect. Our expectation and words are that we will have Bella's Birth Certificate APPROVED this week, for we know we serve a mighty and big God, "for He is able to do super abundantly, far over and above all that we dare ask or think, beyond our highest prayers, desires, hopes or dreams. To Him be the glory...." Eph. 3:20 We will stand strong with our swords held high and His Word on our tongues.

We ask for your continued prayer and support, it has absolutely carried us through and made the load lighter.

Victory is at hand....

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Blessed be His Name!

Please give the Lord a shout for me today! My very good friend Jenifer received her daughter Ana's Mixco Birth Certificate today after a 4 month wait! As I have posted before, this is a document that should only take a week at the most. I am literally a river of tears.....God has answered our prayers, He has broken the Stronghold of corruption, He is faithful to those who love and serve Him. Our day 30 is Monday the 10th, the Civil Registry has been typically releasing them day 33....I will still say "today". Please continue to pray for our Mixco Birth Certificate to be approved with NO previews today in His name. We believe it to already be done and we thank you dear Lord for the BC's you have given. I am just so happy for my dear friend.....sweet Ana is coming home! She's coming home.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Rising Up!

You Raise Me Up
Words and Music by: Brendon Joseph Graham, Rolf U. Loevland

You Raise Me Up by Selah

When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

There is no life - no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly;
But when you come and I am filled with wonder,
Sometimes, I think I glimpse eternity.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

I am STANDING on His shoulders today.....arms in the air, hands up, with praise and gratitude for what He has already done and what He is currently doing that has yet to be revealed. I have seen His glory, and its an amazing place to be. I will not fear, for He has overcome the World. Thank you Lord that you only have plans to prosper me and not harm me. I will pass this test Lord, I will pass.

To all my adoption and blogging friends, you have been an amazing support system. Thank you for your constant encouragement and thoughtful words and postings. So many wonderful gifts in adoption, and the friendships made in unimaginable places has been one of them. I hope to have the opportunity to meet everyone of you someday.

Blessings and prayers to you all.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The Anguish

It's been 5 weeks now since Bella became our legal daughter. I was not prepared for this wait of her birth certificate. In the average normal time frames, we would have most likely traveled this week to bring her home. My heart is heavy, sleep is difficult and my energy low. It has taken every bit of extra energy I have to fight the enemy's lies of out my head. Yet I choose to press on and live by faith....God is bigger, He is faithful, just and merciful. He is quick to perform His Word. Most importantly, He is not only my Advocate, but my daughters.

This evening, I tossed and turned for hours, breaking down in tears over the hurt of missing my daughter. It's been almost 6 months since I have held her, kissed her cheeks, smelled her sweet head, seen her precious face. It's a separation that has been difficult, but at this point, "feels" unbearable. Yet in my moment of thrashing in my bed, trying to make sense of things, praying and believing for His victory, the scripture of Jesus' night in the garden before His death came to mind. I quickly jumped out of bed to grab my bible and I ready every passage of that moment in all four gospels. "My Father, if it is possible, do not give me this cup of suffering. But do what you want, not what I want." Oh how I desire to have the strength to say these Words. How desperately I want this to be about God....and not about me. I was humbled and overwhelmed by the passage. Its one I have heard many times. But tonight, as I sit in my own "anguish", I am reminded of the one who paid the price so that I would not have to experience it.

I read on to read His words shortly before His death "my God, my God, why have you forsaken me". And hit me.....His heavenly Father had to literally turn His back on His own son so that my life could be redeemed and His power upon me. Jesus was literally separated from His Father and after a lifetime on earth of walking with His Father, he would be separated from Him permanently at the most critical and painful moment of His life. He was alone....when He prayed in the Garden, He was alone....when He was beaten and stripped of His dignity, he stood alone, when He was nailed to the cross....alone. And through His death and resurrection, I walk in Victory....and alone, separated from God, is not part of my history, my life, my journey.

Adoption has absolutely been the greatest test of faith for myself and my family thus far, but it has also been the greatest joy. And although my heart hurts, I know that this is a but a time, and I am absolutely not alone. There is no anguish for me, for I have the authority in Him to claim victory and Bella will be home. But it certainly put things in to perspective for me this evening. And I am humbled, grateful and awed again by the presence of His grace. I sit in His wing tonight, and take comfort in knowing that "all is well". Through Him, In Him....she is home!