Tag Archives: hosting

My Book List

Talking a little break from sharing about daily life, I thought I’d share a few of my favorite books that I’ve read recently and why I loved them. Some of these I read awhile ago, and some more recently.

1. Undone: When Coming Apart Puts You Back Together by Laura Sumner Truax

The target audience of this book is Christen women, as the author is a pastor. There’s a lot of inspiration here for being real and vulnerable. It’s full of wonderful quotes and scripture. I’d share more about it, but it’s been a couple of months now since I read it and I recently loaned it out. I definitely recommend it for anyone feeling a bit “undone” or just needing some inspiration.

2. Fasten Your Sweet Belt: 10 Things You Need to Know About Older Child Adoption by Jodi Jackson Tucker and Agnes Tucker

This was a recommended book for hosting! A lot of the book is about the perspectives that the children had on American life. Not much of it was new for me, but it was a great refresher on understanding how overwhelming American life can be for a child from a different culture.

3. Infinitely More by Alex Krutov

I devoured this book. So good. It is the story of a man who grew up in the orphanage system in St. Petersburg, Russia, his story of redemption and how God is using him. At times, it is terribly sad, but it is real and also filled with hope.

4. Priceless by Tom Davis

So intense, but it really draws you in. This is a fictional, Christian story about sex trafficking in Russia. It is heartbreaking and intense. As Tom Davis writes in the author’s notes at the end, it is difficult to read, but so much more difficult for young women to live through.

Next up on my list are There’s No Me Without You, Boy from Baby House 10 and Scared. Favorite books you’ve read recently? I’d also love some lighter recommendations.

Want to Host?

It’s not too late, even for this summer! Project 143 has many children available for their short term program.


From the Project One Forty Three Facebook page: “We need FAMILIES! We need GRANTS! We need YOU! Introducing P143’s Ukrainian SHORT program! We have been so blessed this season with such great children from Ukraine. With everything going on there right now, we made a decision to try to bring as many children as we can to America this summer. Please take a look at these pictured children and pray over them! We are in need of families to host, grants to help get them hosted and a lot of prayers! Their arrival date is slated for July 24th into either Philadelphia or Atlanta. If you would like to talk about orphan hosting or about any of these pictured children in particular, please contact Jerry at jerry@projectonefortythree.com (770-354-2102) or Beth at beth@projectonefortythree.com . Complete our pre-registration to see more details regarding the children available-> http://www.projectonefortythree.org/host/photo-listing-registration/”

Hosting: Real Talk

I’ve had many people ask, “how are things really going?”

Truthfully, things are going well. The two hardest parts of hosting are the language barrier and trying to entertain an extra child over the summer.

So, the language barrier. For the most part, we don’t struggle to explain significant things. The program provides a translator, as well as the chaperone, and we could call either one with questions or for translations.  But, Big L wants to know what we are saying. At first, she would yell “WHATA?!” somewhat obnoxiously, when she wanted to know what we were saying. Now, mostly she mostly trusts us to translate what needs to be translated. She seems to understand what I translate into her language for her, but when she translates something for me, it can take several tries to get a translation that makes sense. If I have no context for what she is saying, it is very frustrating, especially for her. I cannot imagine spending an entire summer with, and growing close to people without being able to communicate well.

That being said, Big L has a huge desire to learn English. She spent some time doing a program called Mango Languages, free through our local library. It is a Russian English as a Second Language course. Russian is not her primary language, but she knows enough of it to understand the course. She learned quite a bit, but still rarely uses it in practice. Just last night, we called her chaperone. Her chaperone asked how her English was, and when I told her that she was shy to use it, the chaperone encouraged Big L to try more. I hope that she will. I believe she has a lot of potential to learn English this summer, but she does need to try. However, I also understand her hesitation to speak in a new language that everyone around her speaks fluently.

So, the second challenge. Trying to entertain an extra child over the summer. Summer entertainment is a big challenge for all of my kids. There is just so much time to occupy. Big L can be very clingy when she is bored, but she is getting better. So far, she has read the entire Jesus Storybook Bible in her native language, made both string and loom bracelets, done an online English course, bike riding, gone swimming countless times, play lots of Uno and Go Fish, and more. I picked up a few books in her native language, and she is doing some reading. I also have a scrapbook for her, so once I have some time to get it started, I’ll hand that over to her and hopefully she will enjoy making some pages.
[reading the entire Jesus Storybook Bible in 2 days.]

These are both such little frustrations in the bigger, awesome picture. Things are going really well here, honestly. Big L is a great kid and we’re happy to have her around.

Questions about hosting? Sure, we’re only 2.5 weeks in, but I’m happy to answer what I can! Leave a comment!

Saturday Morning Regatta

The day after the 4th of July, there was a little boat race activity down at a local park that my mom had signed my kids and my niece and nephews up for.

The kids each got a boat to decorate.

Then, the boats were put into the creek to race.
(that’s Reed, fishing his out.)



(yes, Big L was there, too, but she did not make a boat. You can find her in all purple here, next to my crazy nephew in yellow who looks ready to jump off the bridge.)


The kids had lots of fun. It might have to make this a new tradition.

Other Fourth of July Fun

Here are some other pictures from our Fourth of July. We had a busy, super fun day. Pretty much everything I love about summer.

Bike riding.



This handsome face.

Warning: don’t trust a girl with a bubble gun.

There was a bit of yoga.

We watched the clouds pass for a bit.

Enjoyed laying in the grass.

And these shenanigans started.


Love these guys. And summer.