Trust Without Borders T-Shirts

Ah, I’m so excited about these shirts! Someone posted a very similar shirt in an adoption group a couple of months back saying that someone needed to sell similar shirts. I jumped at the chance!

First, from the tangible perspective, I have a shirt from this company(Fund the Nations) and I love it.

Second of all, it’s just an awesome design. I love Hillsong’s Oceans. It’s a beautiful song and it’s the sort of faith that I want to have– trusting God, following God, and fearless.

So, the shirts!!

V-neck* = $22, which includes shipping within the US

Molly Parker Shirt2 (3)

 

*These are unisex v-neck shirts, so if you are a small in a regular t-shirt, but a medium in a fitted women’s shirt, order the small.

Crewneck = $20, which includes shipping within the US

Molly Parker Shirt3

 

Sizing tips: As mentioned above, the v-necks are unisex, so order the size that you would order in a regular unisex t-shirt. The crew necks are “a tad less generous”, so if you are in between sizes, order the larger one.

Questions? Ready to order?

I am taking orders until November 15 and all shirts will ship in early December for delivery (within the US) before Christmas.

If you’re ready to order, the link below will take you to Paypal. Remember, $22 for a v-neck shirt and $20 for a crewneck shirt and those prices include shipping within the US.

Soaking Up Fall

I really do love fall. Cooler temperatures and beautiful temperatures. But, it also brings with it shorter days and the awareness that winter is coming. Instead of wishing it was still summer, I’m trying to get intentional about enjoying the beauty of fall.

I baked an apple pie from all of those apples we picked.
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We’ve walked home from school, picking the streets with the most beautiful trees.
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I’m normally “too busy” for this, preferring driving, which saves me about 45 minutes.

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Little man actually walked over a mile home by himself.
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Last week, I also baked apple cider donuts. Yum!
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What are you doing to enjoy fall? Any fun ideas?

Best Buddies

I’ve shared many times over the past 4 years that Reed and Lena are best friends.
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This is still so true. Over the summer, they fight a lot more, but now that they are in school, they really enjoy spending time together in the evenings and on the weekends.

We often talk about the highs and lows of our day. Here is one of Lena’s lows, “At lunch, I was standing up because I wanted to say hi to Reed. And, some girl yelled at me. I didn’t even get to see Reeeeeeed!”

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We were trying get some photos to advertise fall sessions for Moose Prints.

“Can you look at each other?”
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“Like you like each other?”
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And, without any more direction from me, it turned into this.
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Don’t get me wrong, they still have arguments. They hurt each other when they choose a friend over the other all the time. But, at the end of the day, they have a very solid bond.
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These last two pictures just crack me up, because they remind me more of a married couple than elementary school kids. But, that’s part of what I love about the two of them.

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(February 2011)

Painting Leaves and Pumpkins

My mom sent me a fun craft idea, painting leaves. I thought that Reed and Lena would enjoy it.

One Saturday, when Aaron had to work, I got everything out to do it. I covered the table in heavy paper and cardboard. I had the kids change. We weren’t having a very good day, but I was hoping some quiet time at the table might help.

I was wrong.
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Yes, that happened first.

The kids did enjoy this. I also gave them the option to paint their pumpkins (hence the smashed pumpkin).
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I really didn’t want to include Gus in this activity. Paint + 3 year olds = not my idea of a good time. But, he wanted to do it.
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One very blue pumpkin later…
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Lena enjoyed this activity the most, and spent the most time on it.
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That was one of my biggest frustrations over it. I judge activities based on time spent doing the activity x fun had – time spent setting up and cleaning up the activity. The setup and clean up time made this not-very-worth-it with my boys. By the time I sat down to paint my own leaves, the boys had gotten up and dumped all of our train tracks on the floor. Wood floor + wooden train tracks = quiet time over.

Just keeping it real here. :) In the world of Pinterest crafts and mommy bloggers, it’s easy to weigh everything we’re doing or not doing as parents. Are we planning regular fun activities? And, are we enjoying every moment of it? In hindsight, I think we would have had a lot more fun if I had waited until Gus was napping AND I had set up an expectation with both Reed and Lena before we began… “this is what we will be doing for Gus’s naptime today. When you decide to be done, you need to clean up your paint and go read quietly in the living room.”

Oh well, lesson learned for next year!

Catching Up

I am way behind on my regular blogging. I’m going to be doing some catch up for the next several days, sharing about what we’ve been up to. Also, on Thursday, I’ll share about our next fundraiser, which will also make some great Christmas gifts!

I’ve been busy with this fundraisers/work/life in general. On top of all of that, Gus’s naps are becoming fewer and fewer.

Occasionally, we reach dinner time, and he just crashes.
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I was trying to finish up some work, and I retreated to m room, which gives me a bit more space than most of the other places in the house when the kids are home. But, he found me.

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He needed to be so close to me that his feet were around my phone and pen, head on my pillow.
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I love it.
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Losing Teeth and Loving Life

A certain little miss has lost both of her front teeth. If you ask her about it, she will excitedly tell you, “And, I have TWO dollar bills from the tooth fairy.”

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This look cracks me up. It’s a look that Aaron gives me often, which means something like “you’re being totally ridiculous.”
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Throwing leaves is definitely a favorite thing of hers to do.
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That’s my silly six year old.


Don’t forget about the MudLOVE bracelet pre-order going until Sunday!

Risk Taking, Hosting and A Matching Grant

Part One: Risk Taking

Sitting outside one afternoon, I talked with a friend while Gus climbed up on our fence, just about a foot off the ground. Thud. His bottom hit the ground.
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A few tears, a hug and all was healed.

When I glanced over again, there he was up on the fence. Again. Why does he do that when he JUST got hurt? He’s just going to fall again, I thought.
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But, I kept on watching him. Tiny feet stepping across the bar. He stretched his legs around corners.
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I could see the risk was minimal, but for him, this was a difficult mountain peak and he was climbing without gear.
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He didn’t fall again. This time, he called out to me, “Mama! I did it!” In his 3 year old brain, he made it to the summit.
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Part Two: Hosting

The conversation I was having that afternoon was about hosting Big L again. Project 143 told us that we needed to decide if we were going to host her again, or if they should find her a different host family. I told my friend how I didn’t want to host. I didn’t want to open myself  and my family up to more hurt. I didn’t want to get myself off the ground again and take the risk.

I had starting to feel peace in the uncertainty, not ready to make a decision about re-hosting or adoption. I wanted to begin the healing process, not rip the bandaid off again. But, we needed to decide.

I talked with those few people I know will offer me wisdom in the face of a huge decision. Questions like, “What does it mean if you don’t host her again?”; “How will you feel if… (insert any number of probable scenarios here)?” “If you don’t, do you think you might regret it?” And, support like, “You can do hard things.” and “I support you no matter what you decide.”

On that day, I hadn’t talked to Big L in over a week. She hadn’t been online and I hadn’t called her either. Our last few phone calls had been pretty forced. She would barely talk. But, I decided to try calling, before we made a decision about hosting.

Instead of listening to the phone ring and ring for a few minutes, I got a quick answer and a happy “Hi!” I was shocked and the only thing I could think to say was “I miss you.” “I miss you, too,” she replied, without hesitation. She asked me about our family and, as it was getting quite late here, I was the one who told her that I needed to go for a change.

I had been ready to give up, but that little conversation was the spark of hope. Maybe the girl we knew is still in there.
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Aaron and I agreed after that: Saying “no” to hosting meant saying “no” to her forever. Saying “yes” to hosting meant one more chance.

I thought of all of the people who have been a constant presence and source of encouragement in my life,  all of the people who have loved me when I made mistakes and given me second chances, all of the wonderful people who’ve had my back no matter what. The people who’ve showed up for me even when I haven’t deserved it or wanted it or had any inkling that I needed it. People like my own mom, my sisters, the friends who’ve loved me for years. The answer was clear. Give her another chance.

If there is one thing that I know about God, it’s that He loves us with a relentless love. A love that never gives up, a love that endures, a love that chases you and seeks to meet you wherever you’re at.

And if there’s one very most important thing that I believe is my responsibility as a follower of Jesus, it’s to be a reflection of that love. To do my very best to love people unconditionally. Even, especially, when it hurts.  Here’s our chance to live that.

This isn’t about adoption. We’d still love to have her as a permanent part of our family, but even if this only gives us clarity on adoption and a few more weeks to pour love into her, that’s okay, too.

We can’t worry about the bigger picture right now. As Glennon Melton says, “just do the next right thing”. The next right thing is four more weeks.

Part Three: A Matching Grant!

We have about $3000 to raise in the next month to cover her hosting fees.  A super generous friend offered  us a $250 matching grant, but before I could even share this news here, I shared it on my personal Facebook page. As of right now, $320 has been donated, taking care of the matching grant! We still have over $2000 to go. Thank you to everyone who has donated and shared about our need.

Here is the link to donate. All donations are tax deductible.

…also know that Moose Prints will be returning soon and I’d love to squeeze some fall photo sessions in as well!