Sunday, December 28, 2008

Going to my Castle!


Have you ever had one of those days? It's not a bad day but more like a "I am pooped and don't give a fig days." On one hand I am ready for the holidays to be over, but on the other hand each day that goes by is one day closer for Dustin to leave. That I am not ready for. I am practicing my fake brave face. I am also sad because 20 years ago today my mom died. I miss her and I often think of how much she would have loved getting to know all of her grandchildren!
I knew raising my kids would be the greatest blessing in my life but didn't think it would also be the most heartbreaking at times.
I went to the Women of Faith conference in OKC last month. One of the speakers said when you are having a bad day, people are getting on your nerves or your family is pushing their luck you should close your eyes and go to your castle. All castles have a moat and a draw bridge. So unless you put that draw bridge down know one is to bother you. So at home or at work if I am having a bad moment I just say "I am going to my Castle" they all know until further notice it would be in their best interest to leave me alone! By the way that is a crown I am wearing. Kennedy gave it to me for the castle!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

An awesome week with my family



This week has been full of blessings. I have all my kids home and that is the best Christmas present I could have asked for! I met two precious little ones who have been in their new home for just 4 days and are doing well. Adoption is so awesome. Some friends blessed our daughter Jordan with a very nice gift! And more than anything I feel Gods presence in each situation. I know that I am beyond blessed and I am very grateful. I think of the children in the world who have no one and this breaks my heart. I wish I could do something for all of them, the fact is that we all need to be doing something for them. Please say a prayer for these precious children and while you pray for them ask God what you can do to make a difference in their lives. I hope and pray each of you had a very Merry & Blessed Christmas.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

My Husband

I really don't say a whole lot about my husband Mike on my blog. I don't know why. Well yeah I do, he is sort of a private guy. I am a share my life girl. He really doesn't say a lot. I could talk until the cows come home. He sees the world in black and white and I see it in full color. He recycles, well he taught me to recycle. He loves sports. Me not so much unless him or one of the kids are playing. He is from Oregon. I am from Texas. For good times, hang around our house when the Spurs and the Trailblazers play each other. Spurs rule, but he has not accepted that yet. I am nine years older. Hmmm... your thinking,what do these two have in common? Everything that matters. God, family, friends, helping those who need us and loving a life that some may see as chaotic but we see as a piece of heaven. Our song is "Two of a Kind working on a Full House" by Garth Brooks. On that point we have been very sucessful! He is an awesome dad. Even though we fight, sometimes a lot and there are times I think I can't stand another day in the same house with him and yes he feels that way also, I can't imagine my life without him. God brought us together for a reason. He knew we would be a good team. And we are. Because of who we are as individuals we compliment each other as a couple. I'm his hon and he's my babe. So to my guy, I love you and I hope your 45th birthday (been there done that ha ha!)
is the best. You are a blessing and I love you.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Days like this!

Are what you live for! Several months ago a young man was hired at our church. He replaced a woman who had the job for many years. The first thing I found out about him was that he and his wife were hoping to adopt. They were adopting through DHS and were just waiting. They are a wonderful young couple and were open to siblings. Months go by and still nothing. Fast forward to Adoption Sunday at our church. They were sitting in worship longing for a child, I was looking at them praying that God would reveal their child to them soon and an older couple who are members of the church had a circumstance in their family with children involved and were beside themselves on what too do.One week later this man calls me and tells me about the situation. He said him and his wife were sitting in church that Sunday trying to figure out what to do. They were sitting during the Adoption program he said "Elaine! maybe she can help us."As he explained the situation this young couple came to my heart. I got as much information as possible told the man I may know of someone and that I would call him back. I called the young man and his wife. I told them about the phone call I had just received. A siblings a little boy and girl. They were so excited. I gave them the gentleman's number hung up and called the other gentleman and told him about the couple and they would be calling. They all met and hit it off! For a while for whatever reason it looked like it would be 6 months before the children could be placed with them. It was ridiculous! They had been approved, they were ready to adopt!Yesterday the young man called me. He said " Elaine we have news. The kids will be coming next week! In time for Christmas! OH MY GOSH!!!!!! I could not have been happier! They are so happy. Again God never ceases to amaze me. Is He awesome or what!I love thinking back on how God orchestrated these events.A woman leaves a job she had for years to try something new. This young man is hired. He hears about our Adoption Ministry and shares with me. Adoption Sunday, a couple prays for a child, I pray for the couple and another couple knows two children who need a home but are not sure what to do. I am placed on their hearts, they call me this young couple is placed on my heart, I call them and a miracle happens! I have been asked why I am so passionate about adoption and Hug Away. The answer is easy. For days like this!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Having faith and grace

Today I read about the Marine jet fighter that crashed into some houses in San Diego. The pilot ejected, but the crash killed a S. Korean women, her 2 month old and 15 month old daughter's and her mother who came from S. Korea to help her with grandchildren. A neighbor said he had saw the husband kiss his wife goodbye that morning and thought how sweet the moment was. Little did that husband know that would be the last time he would kiss her.
Yoon Dong-yoon did a news interview tonight. You can tell his heart is broken and he is grieving. I could not believe what he said first. The first thing he asked was to pray for the pilot. He didn't want him to suffer and feel guilty, it was an accident. He said this man helps protect America, he is treasured. He then went on to say he knew his family was in heaven and God was taking care of them now. They had moved into their house a month or two ago.
I sat here crying and wondering if I could ever be such a witness. It seems he lost everything. His family, his home but the one thing he still has is his faith. Tonight I saw a perfect example of faith and grace.
Please pray for Yoon Dong-yoon and the pilot.

Monday, December 8, 2008

A peaceful heart

I know I am cute!

Taking a break

Helping Dad

I have had a great day! I am at such peace with some decisions I have made. Prayer is a good thing!
I found out that Dustin will be home on the 21st! I am so excited, yet I know this is the calm before the storm in my heart. He will leave on January 10th Kennedy's second gotcha day and the day before my birthday. What a difference a couple of years makes. This will probably be one of the toughest test of faith I will ever have.
God told me He would take care of Him and I am going to continue to believe that.The peace I have in my heart about Dustin, Hug Away and a few other things can only come from God.
Again please pray for all our men and women who are serving. It has too be really hard around the holidays for them and their families.
I am really excited about Hug Away and where we are going. I know that God has great things planned. He has spoke to my heart and 2009 will be so awesome for the foundation.
OK I have to tell you about Ms. Kennedy and Santa. This is only her second Christmas and she is pumped! This girl is not shy. When she sees a Santa she will tell him about her list again and just smile. A Santa walked up to her in the mall and she smiled and raised her hands for him to pick her up! She talked his ear off!
Very opposite of Cameron, who was terrified of Santa and still is not that thrilled when she sees one. She is also very into decorating. She was outside all day after church Sunday with her daddy putting up lights and decorations.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Imagine!

Have you ever done that? I am sure almost everyone has. Imagine if you will no wars, no abuse of any kind to any one. Sounds like a song, hmm...John Lennon. The world has changed a lot since he died.
Imagine that we all got along, respected each other, cared for one another, enjoyed helping our fellow man and loving one another. Imagine NO ORPHANS! That would be my dream. Because it goes along with the respect, caring helping and loving each other.
I have been struggling with what to do with Hug Away. True we were so blessed too help 4 families. But for the first year I expected so much more. Notice the word "I"? There is the problem. I. Don't get me wrong. I know God laid the foundation on my heart and gave me the dream. The problem is I took it away from Him.
Too be honest I thought about giving the foundation up. It was too overwhelming. But then a cool thing happened. God said to me "Imagine!" Imagine Elaine if you acutally listened to me what could happen? Imagine that you let go and trusted Me. IMAGINE!
So I did! Oh it looks so good. It looks so hopeful. Now I am looking forward to what God has planed for Hug Away! I can only Imagine!!!

Look at the nations and watch and be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told. Habakkuk 1:5-6

Monday, November 24, 2008

Missing my baby boy

I am really missing Dustin. I know part of it is because Thanksgiving is in a few days. This will be the second one he has missed with his family. I know right now he is in some very extensive training, so we probably won't here from him for a month. The other thing is that with each day that goes by, the time is getting closer for his deployment. How am I ever going to find the strength too say
goodbye? I use to think I was a pretty tough cookie, but now I am not so sure.

War stinks. But the fact is, it exist and there are brave men and women who are willing to go and fight, possibly die for freedom. I realize that somewhere there are thousands of moms and dads who know their son or daughter will never come home again. I pray we will never be one of them.

The only peace I have about all this is the fact Dustin is doing what God called him too do. The girls and I have a song for Dustin, Chris Daughtry's "Home." I did a slide show with that song on one of my post last December. When we hear it we stop and pray. One day we heard it three times in a row on different stations. We stopped and prayed. He called that night and I told him about it. He said "momma I needed it I am really sick." A mom knows. For the last two days he has been on my heart constantly. I went to call my husband a few times and realized I was dialing Dustin's number. I am hoping everything is ok with him.

Please pray for all the men and women fighting for our freedom.



Tuesday, November 18, 2008

November is National Adoption Awareness Month












Two years ago this month we received the news that I was going to travel to Vietnam in January to bring home our daughter. I remember it like it was yesterday.
Bless Jynger and Katies heart's, I really did try not too bug them too much. Then out of the blue in walks Katie with the good news and as hard as I tried to be cool about it I couldn't! I screamed, I am a jumper so I jumped up and down. Too make it official they did send me an email with the announcement of our G&R date.
We were about to start the process for China, when the fax came in that Vietnam was open. Even though we work in the same office I went back to my desk and emailed Jynger for information about adopting from Vietnam. I asked if there were any little girls ages 1-4 years old. She said "Elaine, I know of a little girl she is a waiting child, who is available and she would be perfect for your family." She knew the children in the orphanages well because she had been over there so often. I went back to her office and she was on the phone, Gail who was the case worker at the time asked me what was going on and I told her. She said "I know the perfect little girl for your family." now mind you they had several files of little girls and boys, but they had to wait for Vietnam to open before they could present them for adoption. Gail shows me a picture of the most beautiful little girl. Then Jynger comes around the corner and said "that is the little girl I wanted to show you." That night as my husband and I went out to celebrate our anniversary I showed him the picture of our daughter and said "happy anniversary babe." First reaction was "oh my gosh. and the next question was "what happened too China? Nine very long months later our girl came home. She has changed our lives in ways that I could have never imagined! Besides her nanny in Vietnam she will always have 4 very special "Aunties" in her life. Jynger, Deniese Dillon, Gail and Katie. They also helped me get through the process with patience and love.
People often ask us how we were lead to adopt. We have been blessed with three wonderful sons. Too be honest I was done. I loved being a mom to three boys. It was my husband who began talking about adoption. It wasn't until I became a Christian at 37 that I felt God tugging at my heart. Five years later, after my husband first mentioned adoption, he went to L.A. and brought home our daughter and placed her in my arms. She was a couple of days shy of 4 months old and Iwas 40. I was so in love! You will understand this if you have adopted.
The big question. How can you fall head over heels in love with a picture? Well that picture is everything too you. I mean everything until your baby is placed in your arms.
Who knew that four years later my husband would fly to S. Korea to bring home our beautiful 15 month old daughter! I was 44! I thought too myself and prayed "God let me be a good mom and not act old!" Then one day before my 52nd birthday our third daughter was placed in my arms by her nanny. Now I was really praying for endurance! :) My daughters have kept me young! I realize my husband and I will never be emptynester's and that is fine with us.
Adoption is the ultimate testimony too describe what God did for us. He adopted all that believe in Him into His family. I love Him passionately! My husband and I believed in His plan for us and stepped out in faith and we were blessed beyond anything we could have ever planned for ourselves.
There are so many orphans in the world. It shouldn't be that way but it is. No matter how bad things are in the world, there will always be orphans. They need us and to be honest we need them! If God has ever touched your heart about adoption, take a step of faith and I promise, you will be blessed!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Thank you to those who serve our country!

Today is Veterans Day. If you have served or are serving I personally would like to thank you from the depths of my heart! Because of your commitment to America I am able to live a very good life, worship as I choose and express my opinions (legally) without fear of prosecution. Some have given the ultimate sacrifice and laid down their lives for this country.
My daughters who were born in different countries and became citizens of this great country decided in their own way too honor their brother Lance Corporal Dustin W. Bayer.
Jordan earlier this week decorated a door at her school and put his Marine picture on it. Today she got up and was at school by 7:15 too help the Junior National Honor Society put out flags around the school, Ms. Cameron and Ms. Kennedy are wearing their "Sister of a United States Marine" t-shirts. They are proud to be Americans and proud to be sisters of a United States Marine!

To my son,We love you and are so proud of you!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My Dad

I don't talk about my dad much. He died 24 years ago today. I remember it like it was yesterday. He was in the Tulsa Memorial Day flood in 1984. He got an infection in his lungs from being in the water, suffered a severe stroke and died 6 months later. We buried him on Veterans Day. He served in the Navy, WW 11 and the Korean War, so he received Military Honors at the funeral. They handed my oldest Michael who was 7 at the time and who adored his papa Jack, the flag from his coffin. It broke my heart.
My dad was a complex person. It is sad to say but I really don't know a whole lot about my dads life growing up. I never knew his mom, but I do remember my grandpa Joe. He died when I was 9 or 10. I adored him. I can still remember him coming to visit from Idaho. He would say "come on sissy, lets go to the drug store and get a cherry coke." We would walk hand in hand just talking. He always wore a hat a tweed sports coat and smelled of old spice. Like I said my dad was complex and he had issues, but deep down he was a good guy and he loved us. I am sure if I knew his story growing up it would probably answer many questions I have about him. I know I got my love of quotes from him. He was always quoting something.
I think deep down he was a very sad person just trying to cope and make it in this world. I went to the cemetery today to visit his grave. It had been almost a year since I had been there and it showed. So I cleaned up his tombstone so it would look nice for when they put the flag on it Veteran Day, talked to him, told him I was sorry I had neglected his grave, told him I loved him and promised to do a better job. I caught him up on the grand kids he never knew and his great grand kids. I placed a kiss on his tombstone and left to go visit my moms grave.


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Slam them or pray for them.

I've been thinking a lot the last couple of days. I am a christian and I have been one for 16 years. I must say Christians amaze me at times. We are suppose to be about love, hope and lift up those who need prayer. We are taught to love, not necessarily like our enemies. Yet I have heard more Christians slam Obama than non-Christians who voted republican. I am not a fan of Obama, but instead of slamming our new president-elect I am going to lift him up in prayer. All Christians should. We should be praying not only for him, but our whole government and the world.
Please don't forget we have men and women who in the past, present and future have fought or are fighting, died or will die for our freedom to pray.
I have had people say "Canada's looking good." What that tells me is as long as things are going your way you will stay. But when the going gets tough... We truly do live in a "me" world. We live for ourselves. It's all about what makes us happy and what is convenient for us.
The fact is the world as we once knew it is changing fast. If you have never opened the bible you should get one and read it. Jesus tells us these things will happen. It is called prophecy. Don't believe me? All you have to do is go to the bible and read it. Man did not and does not have the power to look into the future and predict things thousands of years ahead of time.
So if people want to waste their time slamming Obama, go right ahead. As for me, I am going to pray for him, our government, for America and for the world.
God Bless America.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

A New Day

I am watching the T.V. and see Obama is our new President. Wow. I did not vote for him. Personally I wish Joyce Meyers had ran for President, I would have voted for her! But like it or not, he is our President and I will respect that. History is being made tonight in more ways than we probably realize right now. But I have to say that John McCains concession speech was the best speech he has ever made. It came from his heart and he gave it with compassion, grace and dignity. He can truly hold his head high.
But now here is my big news. I would like to congratulate my son Lance Corporal Bayer! He was promoted yesterday. We are very proud of him! He promised me a picture, so as soon as I get one I will post it. It was a year ago that the picture I posted was taken. He left a boy and became a Marine. I can't believe a year has already gone by.
In that same note, He needs prayer. That is all I will share. God knows what the need is. So when you pray lift Dustin up, please.


Sunday, November 2, 2008

Adoption Day





For the past six years we have celebrated Adoption Awareness Month at the church I attend, which happens to be Arrow Heights Baptist Church in Broken Arrow, OK :)
We have an awesome Pastor who from the day I came to him with this idea he was all for it.
Our goal was to educate our congregation about adoption. Since that first Sunday in November 6 years ago, I know of 1o families who were lead to adopt. We now have several who are in the process or praying for guidance. We also started a Family Adoptive Group. We are so blessed to have a church that supports adoption, not only
with a hug and donations, but they pray for the families in the process.
So today was very special. Aaron Hamilton and his wife Stephanie and their son Ayan ( cutie pie pictured above) who they adopted from Kazakhstan came to visit. They are former members but they are one of the families who were lead to adopt during one of these celebrations. Anyway, Aaron wrote this beautiful song about their thoughts, prayers and feelings during the adoption wait. He needs to RECORD this song. It was so beautiful.
Then a wonderful young woman named Sarah who I met 2 years ago came to share her story. She had a decision to make when I met her, abortion or adoption. She chose adoption and now shares her story from a birth mothers perspective.
I can not think of one year since we have began celebrating adoption that at least one or more families will call me later and tell me "we have prayed about this and today God confirmed it in our hearts, we are going to adopt." I can't wait to see who calls this year!
Please remember the orphans. I have said this a hundred times and will continue to say it, we are not all called to adopt, but we are all called to help. Some stats for you.
Orphan Statistics
These are not just numbers and statistics, these are LIVES, CHILDREN with little hope! What part will you play in relieving the plight of orphans??!!
Every 15 SECONDS, another child becomes an AIDS orphan in Africa
Every DAY 5,760 more children become orphans
Every YEAR 2,102,400 more children become orphans (in Africa alone)
143,000,0002 orphans in the world today spend an average of 10 years in an orphanage or foster home
Approximately 250,000 children are adopted annually, but…Every YEAR 14,050,000 children still grow up as orphans and AGE OUT of the system
Every DAY 38,493 children AGE OUT.
Every 2.2 SECONDS, another orphan child AGES OUT with no family to belong to and no place to call home
In Ukraine and Russia 10% -15% of children who age out of an orphanage commit suicide before age 18.
60% of the girls are lured into prostitution. 70% of the boys become hardened criminals.
Many of these children accept job offers that ultimately result in their being sold as slaves. Millions of girls are sex slaves today, simply because they were unfortunate enough to grow up as orphans.
Reliable statistics are difficult to find, even the sources often list only estimates, and street children are rarely included. But even if these figures are exaggerated by double, it is still an unacceptable tragedy that over a Million children would still become orphans every year, and every year 7 Million children would still grow to adulthood as orphans with no one to belong to and no place to call home. They are totally vulnerable and easily fall prey to predators and slave recruiters.
According to figures from the United Nations. These statistics include children in the American Foster Care system.
Infants may stay as long as 18 years while children who become orphans at an older age stay a shorter time.
To AGE OUT means to grow to the age where a child is forced to leave the orphanage or foster home with no place to call home.
If only 7% of christians in the world would adopt, there would be no orphans.
So what will you do too change the life of an orphan?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Hard call to make

Looks like I will not be going to the ball. It wasn't an easy call to make. It all comes down to the fact that I can't say goodbye to Dustin twice. Dustin deploys in February. When he comes home on leave December 22nd he will be home until January 11th (my birthday.) When he leaves that day I will say good bye to him for a very long time. It will be the hardest day of my life. There is no way I can turn around ten days later and say good bye again. I kept going back and forth because on one hand I could see him one more time before he is deployed but another good bye? My heart couldn't take it.
When he called tonight he was in total agreement. He said he had thought the same thing the other night. But as always my sweet boy says just the right thing. He said "mama, there will be another ball at the end of next year. We can make plans too attend that one and instead of good bye we will say hello!" Here is a very quick video of Dustin when he came home Labor Day. I think his sisters love him just a little bit. Remember Dustin we have a date! Love you baby boy!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Riverwalk Community Church

Answering some great questions
Yes, I let Mike talk! He is pretty good at it.

Today Mike and I were invited to share attheRiverwalk Community Church in Glenpool. They were doing a series on "Heroes" for the month of October. We do not see our self as hero's but what an honor it was to go and share about Hug Away. I hope they were blessed with what we shared, I know we were blessed by them! They are not a big church, they are just starting out so they have a small congregation, but what a wonderful blessing they were! Gary Davis the pastor gave a wonderful sermon on adoption and that is all he focused on. He interviewed us and asked wonderful questions and then we answered questions from the congregation. They kept us on our toes!
If you live in the Glenpool, Jenks, Sapulpa, South Tulsa area check them out. You will not be sorry. They are what I think of as a simple church. They welcome you, make you feel right at home, share from the heart and look for ministries to serve. You will be blessed. You can go to http://www.riverwalkchurch.net/ for more information.
It is nice to go out of your "comfort zone" once in while, visit other churches and hear what they have to say. After the last couple of weeks I needed this day. It reminded me that God called me to do this. Yes, there are days I get down and think what is the point? Then God in His perfect timing always has something too remind me that Hug Away is His, not mine and He called me to do this for Him.
Thank you Riverwalk Community Church and Pastor Gary Davis. You are awesome!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Putting things in perspective

After my last post it made me realize for over a year in the back of my mind this "thing" has consumed me. So I decided to move on. People are going to think what they like, past judgement, draw their own conclusions, that is their deal not mine. As long as I can wake up in the morning and know God is pleased with me then I am ok. That doesn't happen every morning but it is nice when it does.
I work partime for an optometrist. Today a man came in and asked if we accepted walk ins, I said yes and gave him a form to fill out. He was a tall guy in his early 50's a native american, very stoic. He said he hoped I could read his writing because is hand kind of shakes. I took him back to pre test him and he told me his story. One month ago today he had been told he had 24 hours to live if he did not have a liver transplant. He was 1,211 on the list. His doctor came in a few hours later and said they had a liver. One month later and a weight loss of 120 pounds he was sitting there telling me his story. I just looked at him in awe. I said "you know it wasn't' your time to go, God must have big plans for you." He looked at me and said " yeah I know, I can't wait to find out what it is." I said "maybe you are suppose to share your story and let people know that miracles still happen and give them hope." He just smiled and said "yeah maybe." He not only inspired me but in him I saw hope.
Shortly after that a 4 year old boy came in with his foster mother. He was a doll with a personality as bright as the sun. But he was in foster care because he had been neglected and abused. I watched his foster mother as she interacted with him. I think she is in love.
Last night I spoke to my son Dustin. He will not be home for Thanksgiving because he will be in the field for a month preparing for his deployment. He will be home Dec 22nd and then leave on my birthday January 11th. He will deploy in February. Before he is deployed we will have to go over the "paper work" just in case. I will have one more chance to see my son at the Marine Corp Ball and after that I have no clue.
As I sit here in my nice comfortable home, there are babies being thrown away, children being kidnapped for sex, children digging in dumpsters for food, children taking care of children, orphans trying to survive in a world that often forgets about them, young men and women who went straight from high school to the horrors of war dying to defend our country.

Yeah, that pretty much puts everything in perspective.

Monday, October 20, 2008

My side of the story

One of the reasons I started a blog was so friends and family could follow our journey to adopt our daughter Kennedy. After she was home for a while I still wanted to blog. I realized how blessed I am and yet as a christian my life has it's ups and downs. Yes it is true just because you are a christian doesn't mean your life is perfect, being a christian gives you power on how to handle the ups and downs. I wanted my blog to be real and honest.
Most people who read my blog will have no idea what I am talking about, but there are many who will.
I have heard some rumors about myself and some friends and as for my part in this story I just want to set the record straight. If you feel the same way after you read this that is fine, I just want to make sure everyone has the facts.
A little over a year ago I left a job I loved very much. Not only did I love my job, but I loved the people I worked with. You can't ask for more than that. Sure it had it's up and downs but what job doesn't? I left my job, because I felt for whatever reason my job was phased out. It was like the elephant in the room that no one spoke of. No one had to say anything it was pretty obvious too myself and a few others that for what ever reasons I was not needed anymore. So I took the high road and I used my foundation as the reason to leave. Deep down I was hoping this was all part of Gods plan and that is what I was supposed too do. But deep down I couldn't figure out what was going on. The same thing had happened to my friend a few months before. We both loved our job and were passionate about it but for what ever reason we were not needed or wanted anymore. I was so confused and hurt. We had just adopted a beautiful little girl and financially me leaving the job hurt us and we are still trying to play catch up. I focused on Hug Away went to work partime and put my trust in God. But oh I missed my old job and my co-workers. They had been such a huge part of my life for so long.
The foundation was going well. My friend took her gifts and passion and used them to start a business. Two friends who had done a lot of volunteer work for us and a lot of other people contacted me and my friend asking us if we would like to start doing the same thing we did at our old job. We said yes!
In our hearts all we wanted to do was use our gifts and passions again. We never thought of ourselves as anything but adoptive moms, with beautiful children adopted from other countries wanting to make a difference. It sure wasn't about money or kudos, it was just about our children, these precious babes from different parts of the world, the ones God had entrusted too us. It was and will always be our responsibility too do everything we can for them.
What we didn't plan on was that this would upset others, making them mad at us, talking about us and thinking whatever else they were thinking. Personally I am always happy when my family or friends are happy. I have no ill will towards anyone. As a matter of fact I still recommend where I use to work to anyone who ask me about it.
Even if I don't understand how things got to this point, a piece of my heart will always be where I use to work. When I look at pictures of my daughter when she was in Vietnam with the two people who helped bring us together I cry. God used them to bring us our daughter and I will never forget that and it will always be one of the most important parts of her story.
I would hope that people would understand that when God calls you to do something you have to take that step of faith and do it. It doesn't mean you are in competition or out to destroy anyone, you are just being faithful and using your gifts. I would expect no less from anyone else. I believe God gave each of us gifts and there are enough people in this world for all of us too bless.
For me personally I can't work where I use to so God has opened doors for me and my friends to use our gifts somewhere else. I hope everyone will just realize that and respect it, just like I respect them.

There is so much more I want to say, but I am tired and need to go too bed. I will pray tonight for hearts to heal, friends to stay friends and lift each other up and for all of us to realize that our focus should be on Gods desire for our lives and not each other.

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Phillippians 4:12-13



Saturday, October 18, 2008

Fall Blessings!

The week began with a wonderful concert with
the middle school and high school combined
orchestra. They were fantastic. Little did Jordan know she was getting ready to have a rotten Fall break.

Getting last minute instructions

Listening to the high school play


Off we go to the pumpkin patch Choosing the perfect pumpkin is not easy!

The end of a great day!


There is nothing like fall and going to the pumpkn patch. We love taking the kids and grandkids. It was a perfect day. The only one missing was Jordan who has had a cold the whole time she was on Fall break. At least she was ok for the concert.




Monday, October 13, 2008

Going to a Ball!

I have a date with a handsome young Marine, January 22nd to the Marine Corp Ball! Actually two dates, my husband gets to go also. I am so excited! It will be held in Las Vegas and of course it is very formal. I will take lots of pictures and Kleenex! I cry whenever I watch those Marine Corp commericals so I know the dam will break when I am in a room full of them.
I have lost some weight for health reasons and now I am more determined to lose some more.
I already know what dress I want. I am going to be Cinderella for a night! Except for the fact I don't have blonde hair, blue eyes a size 3 waist and birds talking to me!
Friday when Mike was at the airport too meet Dustin he was saying good bye to our other son Cody who was going to Tuscon to visit our other son Michael, Cody and Dustin missed seeing each other. Today Cody and Dustin met at the DFW airport in between flights! I wish they would all just land! :) It gets harder and harder to say good bye to Dustin. He will probably be home for Christmas. Hopefully for a month. But after that he leaves for Iraq or Afghanastan. :(
If you read the post below and notice some of it missing, it is because God laid on my heart to remove it. So I always make it a point to listen to Him.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Figures

This is a picture on the side of the hospital where Jordan was born in S. Korea. I am always humbled when I think of Jesus, who died on the cross for all of our sins, washing feet. He wants us to be a servant. In other words help those in need, with the gifts He gave us. We all have gifts and passions. It is up to us to discover them. Just wanted you too know.

Who comes walking in the door bright and early Friday morning? Dustin! I knew he was coming home, but he almost didn't make it. My husband works for an airline, which Dustin chose to buy tickets on instead of flying stand by. Well the military schedule doesn't always work out with any ones plans. So Dustin calls us Thursday evening and says he is not going to be able to make the flight out and could we call and get him on a later flight. After a long time on the phone, sure we can for another $300! Are you kidding me?! These men and women have volunteered to fight for us and you can't just change the tickets for them? Ahh... Greed in America. Oh trust me you do not even want me to go there. I am sick of selfish, greedy,arrogant, corporate America. $300!!!! GRRRRRRR!!!!!! So he ate that part of the ticket and will use the other half to get back to the base on Monday. May I just give a plug for Southwest (no my husband doesn't work for them) they treat our military very well! Dustin has used them in the past and they always treated him great. Ok I got too vent, moving on.

Friday, October 3, 2008

About the Video

I have had some people ask me about the video. A couple of years ago when I first heard the song I knew instantly I would use it on our adoption video. We have been celebrating Adoption Month at our church for about 6 years. About every other year we put together a video. I called my friend Macy, who is 16 and adopted from S. Korea and told her what I wanted and she made it happen! I have had many, many people come up to me telling me how much the video touched their hearts. I think it helps when you see people you know, how lives were changed and blessed!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Angels walking among us

This could take while so if you need to go get your coffee, tea or cherry vanilla diet Dr. Pepper go for it. I have had a very interesting week. God answered me, just not in the way I thought He would.

One thing I have come to realize is that sometimes after we have prayed and have the answer and are all set on doing what we have been lead to do, God may throw in a little curve ball just to make sure He truly has our attention. That happened to me this week. I won't go into all the details but God confirmed in my heart what I was suppose to do, then BAM a little curve ball. Of course this made me sit back and rethink the situation. You know, was it me, was it God? Am I sure that is what I am suppose to do? ARGH! Now what? To be honest I had no clue. I was really upset. Then God sent three angels with three messages. You do realize that angels walk among us? Some we see and some we don't. These three angels were men that God used to help me realize several things. They each had a message for me.

The first angel came to me Friday afternoon with an envelope. In the envelope was a card and a gift card. Both very unexpected. As nice as the gift card was it was the hand written message in the card that meant the most. It said that I was valued and appreciated. Then it dawned on me whenever I was in a situation that I was feeling very unappreciated by a certain critical person this angel would show up right after and make everything all right.
The second and third angels came today. Our church is having a mission week so our Sunday School class had a visiting missionary come speak. He is from Ethiopia and is wonderful. One thing about preachers from other countries they do not try to make everything nice and rosy, they tell it like it is and kick your booty into the real world. Anyway, he taught the truth. But he also confirmed so many things in my heart! It was like God was saying " yes Elaine, you are on the right track, stay faithful, I am right here." He also spoke about the fact that God gave everyone of us a purpose. It is up to us to discover what that purpose is and use it. He said people who discover their purpose and never use it will never know true joy. More about this angel in a bit.
The third angel was a guest missionary preacher in worship. First of all we had people coming in at the beginning of service carrying flags from many nations. I don't mind saying when the S. Korea flag and the Vietnam flag go by my heart jumps and I get all teary eyed. Then when the Christian flag and the American flag go by, well that is all she wrote! Here comes the tears. I have daughters from S. Korea and Vietnam and I have a son who vowed to fight for our freedom, so if the waterworks go so be it!
Anyway the preacher again kicked some much needed booty and told stories of children in other countries that would make your blood curl. Then he asked "what are you going to do about it?" Again, we can all do something! Give money, pray, serve... All of these things are important. You need too spend time with God too know what that is. After he was through with his message he asked everyone who felt called too do one of the above in a mission capacity to come down front. Without any hesitation, my husband took my hand and we walked to the front, I am happy to say with a lot of others who felt lead. It was a defining moment for my husband and I. We know, that we know, that we know.
Back to angel number 2. Some of our community took him and his wonderful family to lunch. We had a wonderful time. After everyone left I was talking to a friend and her son, while her husband was speaking to this missionary. Afterwards my daughter and I went up to him to tell him how much we enjoyed him and his family. He took my hand looked directly into my eyes and said "you have a personality that makes people feel very comfortable, you make us feel like we have always known you." I was shocked and humbled. Here I walked up to him to tell him how wonderful I thought his message was and he says this to me. Then he says "you have a kind heart and your heart will link many people together." gulp. I just looked at him and shook his hand which he had held this whole time and said "thank you so much." Then his wife came up to me and she was so sweet and basically was agreeing with him.
Why do I share this? It is not to toot my own horn. Don't you see? This is totally and completely about God. How when we think we are at the end of our rope and can't take anymore, or move on, or we are not sure, when we are down to our last mustard seed of faith, He will be there. He may show us He is there through people He brings into our lives, a sermon, a verse from the bible a song or a dream. However it may be we have to be looking with our heart. Believe it or not there are times our heart hears and sees better than our eyes or ears.
So too answer the question from the previous post. The Spirit will win.
I want to say thank you God for the three angles you put in my life this week. Watch over them and bless them. And Lord thank you for not giving up on me even when I have given up on myself.
Have a blessed week!
Like cold water to a weary soul, is good news from a distant land. Proverbs 25:25

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Complete and Total Faith

If you have read my blog for any length of time you know this last year as been one of ups and downs. Exactly one year ago next week I left a job I really loved. I didn't want to leave but it was apparent I needed to exit. All of the sudden I had nothing to do. So I saw it as an opportunity to do what God had called me to do with the Hug Away Foundation. I can say there are days I think "OK God what else could you possibly teach me today? Is there anything left?" The answer is always yes. I would be lying if I didn't admit to you that I am physically, emotionally, financially wore out. But never spiritually. That is what keeps me going. Faith.
I think I have been open to the fact I had to hit my lowest lows to get to the point where I would actually reach up to God. Again, to be completely honest there are days I have felt He left me hanging because I sure didn't feel Him reaching down. But I know that I know He is there and prayers will be answered. They say that what doesn't break you makes you stronger. Well if that is the case...
This week God has showed me through our lesson in Sunday school, worship and scripture that I have to depend on Him and the things that have happened this past year were lessons to teach me to give God control. I may say I give God control, but as long as I continue to take things into my own hands then I am not trusting Him let alone depending on Him.
I have a huge decison to make. The answer is pretty obvious, but the effect it will have could be very stressfull in more ways than I care to think of. If I let go and do what I beleive I am suppose too do, it will truly be in Gods hands and I will be totally depended on Him. If I don't give it all too Him, I would have control of something I should have let go of long ago. The answer seems simple doesn't it? We are talking complete and total faith. Will the flesh win over the spirit or the spirit win over the flesh? I hope I can say the spirit will win.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Update on little girl

Remember the little girl I mentioned about 2 post ago? Her forever family has found her! No it is not us and yes I am ok with that. I am just happy she has a family.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Gods Plan


































My beauties. They were gifts at a time in my life when I thought I was through having children. God had blessed me with three awesome sons and an angel in heaven. I was forty years old and going to baseball and basketball games and preparing for my oldest son to graduate from high school. Life was good. My husband had been after me to for a long time to adopt, but I wasn't ready. Then one day God spoke to my heart and I knew it was time. Since then life has been one crazy ride.
God gave me a passion for adoption, adoptees and their heritage and blessed me with the Hug Away Foundation to pursue that passion. When Hug Away became a non-profit the goal was to educate people and the community about adoption, when funds were available issue grants to help with the cost of adoption and help the orphans who could not be adopted. At the request of a whole lot of folks we are looking at other avenues for adoptees. The foundation has a great team working on this and so far the response has been more than we could have ever imagined. God is so good. If you are faithful to His call on your life He will bless you. It may not be easy but in His perfect time He will make it happen. Our goal is not about making money or noteriety but to focus on God and His desire for all the lives we will touch through the foundation.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

FYI

I have been fasting since 10 pm last Monday night. I wish I could say it was my choice but it wasn't. I am having a procedure today so...
I have had some friends email me about the little girl I mentioned in my previous post. Well, I have been in prayer and I emailed for some more information. The good news is others have shown interest but no one has been called to adopt her. My husband and I are in prayer. Again Gods will. I will say this, Our Cami was a waiting child. She came very close to going back into the system and labeled unadoptable. But our God and His perfect timing brought us together. What a blessing our family would have missed. I rest assured in the fact that the family God planned for her will step up.
Some of you have asked me for my email. If you like I have a facebook page so you can contact me that away or through hugawayfoundation@cox.net
Speaking of Hug Away! I am so excited!!! We are venturing out into another arena. I will post more about it as soon as it is set in stone but it is going to be AWESOME! There is a terrific team working on the "education" part of our foundation. It is going to be exciting and the response we have had so far is incredible and very positive.
Well I better go! Please say a prayer for my friend Ms. Pat today. We love her and she is pretty sick right now.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

You Know!

You know, that you know, that you know. My pastor says that often. What does he mean? Well, it depends on the situation. On this day I know, that I know, that I know that God knows I have done everything in my power to be faithful, patient and persevere through this last year. I have had to change a lot in the way I think and act. Today, He opened the window and let a light of hope shine in! It was small but exactly what I needed at exactly the time I needed it. I knew right then He was hearing my prayers. I know that someday I will look back at this time and thank God for it. It has made me more faithful, stronger and has changed my walk with the Lord for the better.
God has also placed a little girl in China on my heart. I am not quite sure if she came to me or I came to her, but she is now on my heart. Now for those of my friends who are freaking out thinking "ARE YOU CRAZY!" Stop right there. I have no idea why we were brought together, but I do not question God. Are we too adopt her? I have not had that confirmed in my heart nor has it been pushed away. Am I just to pray for her too find a family? Always!
But a few things of interest and you are welcome to give me your thoughts on this.

1. Out of all the orphans I have access to she is the only one who can be adopted by parents up to 55 and the only one who was placed on my heart.
2. When she was put on my heart I thought "Oh know you have to be kidding?" no response, but to pray.
3. I reached for a stack of verses that were laying on the table and in my very human way said "Ok God give me a verse to show me what this means. One side has a quote the other a bible verse. I see the quote first, one of my favorites. "What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." Ralph Waldo Emerson . The bible verse was,
" By their fruit you will recognize them." Matthew 7:16
4. That same day a very good friend who has adopted three children from China in the last 4 or 5 years 2 in the last year and a half emailed me to say they were feeling lead to adopt again. They have 6 like us and a pretty good age range.
5. Out of pure curiosity this morning I asked Kennedy who always says " no more babies" if she would ever want a little sister. For the first time the answer was ''yes."
6. Then this window of hope opened this morning.

My plans were to be a lawyer, have a husband and have 2 boys and 2 girls and save the world and have awith a fancy house, blah blah blah. God had a much better plan for my life. One very important thing I havefound out on this journey is the fact I do not need stuff and prestige too be happy. I need God. Simple as that. What ever He desires for my life I am happy with that. So, please pray that Gods will is done.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

One year later




One year ago this weekend I prepared to say good bye to my youngest son Dustin. He was preparing to go to Marine boot camp. The day after Labor Day we took Dustin to his recruiters office, said good bye and left. It was hard. Exactly one year later we went to the airport too pick up Dustin and bring him home for Labor Day. A lot has changed in one year. The young boy we left at the recruiters office a year ago is now a man. He is a Marine. He is still our crazy Dustin who loves his family and loves to have fun! Today I hear his cd's playing way to loud in his old room and I realize how much I have missed that! Hmm...now for the mess in the room not so much! So for a few days my Marine is home and all is right with the world.









Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Praying for a miracle!

Why not? I have faith and I believe in miracles, sooo... Here's the deal, After I left my job a year ago to start the Hug Away Foundation it has been tough. Not only emotionally but also financially. I have kind of floated around like a balloon with the air let out since then. Don't you just love my metaphors? Anyway it has been tough but I have learned so much on this journey. It has made me more patient, more appreciative and has allowed me to rely on my faith!
Right now I am working two part time jobs. I am from the old school and I do not mind doing whatever it takes, but it is really tough, not only on me physically but being away from the girls so much and not being able to work on Hug Away.
Tonight was my night off from my second job and I was sitting here chilling on the computer (the girls are in bed and Mike is at work) and it came to my heart "ask for prayer about your situation." So here I am asking for prayer. When three or more are gathered in His name. So for those of you who pray, please pray that I listen to God and do His will in my life and that needs are met. God knows what I need. As a matter of fact if you need prayer about anything let me know in the comment section and I will pray for you. God Bless!

Monday, August 25, 2008

This is me

This is me trusting God, thinking positive thoughts and believing God is taking me through this journey. He never said it would be easy, all He asked was that I trust Him. So this is me trusting God. Every single time one of those giants confronts me, I stay strong and remember the reward that lies ahead. Honestly, it makes this journey a whole lot easier.
I know without a doubt I have sisters and brothers in Christ who are praying for me and I want to thank them. And to my dear friend and sister in Christ Connie J. Thank you for reminding me that satan attacks those of us who are strong in our faith. Love you sister!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Facing the Giants

Most of us do everyday. They are everywhere. My all time favorite movie is Facing the Giants.
If you have never watched it you should. It is about facing your giants and how with God nothing is impossible. I have been inspired this week to think and act more positive, to believe that though I am facing giants God is right there and has great plans for my life.

These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. Revelations 3: 7-8.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Personality check!

Aha! I have decided too do some tweaking in the personalty department. I am going to speak blessings into my life and believe that they are going to happen. The last 10 months have been such a roller coaster ride I have kind of, no not kind of I have lost my way a little bit. My faith has wavered at times and I have felt alone, but not anymore. God spoke to my heart last night about this. Sooo... I made a decision right then to wake up this morning believing I was going to be blessed and just have a good attitude. Remember in the last post about my bad day and I said today would be better? Well it was! Though several things happened that would normally put me in a "mood" I refused to go there. I just kept saying to myself "I am Gods child, He loves me and He wants good things for my life." It worked!
Now with all this said, I am not a gloom and doom person. I have a good attitude and pretty easy going personality, but I am human and I have bad days. More good than bad, but none the less. God gave me a a free spirit so I have the choice to work on this and that is what I am going to do.
I expect great things to happen from this.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Hmm...

I had a bad day! I mean bad. You know one of those days that are so bad you have too laugh because you are thinking to yourself, "are you kidding me? It was just a bunch of stupid stuff. Anyway the day is almost over and for that I am thankful. The bright side of all this is tomorrow has to be better, right?
The only bright side of the day was my Kennedy girl started pre k today! Oh she was so excited! She had her princess back pack and her princess lunch pail. She was so cute! So whenever I was in the bad zone today I thought of that precious face and it made me feel much better. She has real attachment issues. I think she said bye to me. All I know is we walked up to the door of her classroom and she was gone as I stood there, all alone surrounded by all these young cute moms...boohoo.I guess she thought she had taught me well and could just move on, sigh.
Another happy thought is the fact my Dustin is coming home for a few days Labor day weekend! I have never been away from him this long. What am I going to do when he is deployed?
For all my griping I know I am blessed and I never forget that even in my worse moments. As I look back I see how God in only ways that God can, took care of me, even teaching me lessons along the way. Any turmoil, anxiety and yes even bad days are mostly my own doing because of poor choices and bad attitude.
Tomorrow will be better.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Keep on keeping on


As many of you that read my blog faithfully are aware my husband and I founded the Hug Away Foundation in 2006. We offer financial grants for adoption, education and Hope for Orphans. All of this was inspired after adopting three precious little girls and of course inspiration from Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman. By Gods grace we became a non-profit in January of 2008. We have been able to help three families so far. Not bad. The reason we stepped out of our Church's umbrella and became a non profit was so we could hopefully receive donations from corporate America. I have no clue how to approach them. So far all our money has come from donations at church and fundraisers. I am just a mom and sometimes I feel I am way over my head.

At this time no one is paid, so except for materials and setting up the foundation all of the money has gone to grants. As of today we don't have enough money to offer anymore grants.
God has been so good, we would not have come this far without Him and those who believed in what we were doing and donated.
I left my job last October because I knew without a doubt God called me to do this. It has been a rough 10 months personally and financially, but I have learned a lot not only about myself but about hanging in there. I will be honest, when we became a non-profit I just knew people would want to help and we could help hundreds of families and orphans...wham! just like that. Little did I know that God was going to teach me about baby steps, patience, faith and learning to trust in Him totally. Do I succeed in this everyday? NO! I fall short so often I honestly have days I think "what's the point?" Then God will speak to my heart and say "come on Elaine, don't quit now."

I am working 2 jobs and I am tired . But only because God called on me do I have the strength to get up everyday and keep on keeping on. I am so grateful He provided me with these jobs. For those of you wondering, I work around my kids schedule. They are my whole world and they are my priority.
I hope someday I will not have to work two jobs and devote that time towards Hug Away. I ask those who read this blog pray for Hug Away. I have no doubt God will provide. If you would like to see what we are all about go to http://www.hugaway.org/

We have a video of some of the families that go to our church who have adopted. Some of them were inspired by seeing videos or hearing testimonies during our Adoption Month celebration.
Anyway see those three beautiful angels? That is why I want Hug Away to succeed. I want other families to be blessed by adoption. I know adopting know is tough, but you know what? There will always be orphans and they are worth the fight.
My husband has the opportunity to travel to Ethiopia in October. This is a missionary trip. If God opens the doors for him to go he will visit an orphanage we hope to help. The sad thing is not all orphans can be adopted, but they deserve to know that someone loves them and wants to take care of their needs. Please keep this in your prayers also.
I appreciate those who read my blog. I love the fact that people from all over the world can read a blog. In a way we are kind of a family. We may not agree with each other on everything that is blogged, but we check in on our "blog family" to see how they are doing and what's going on. With that being said I pray each of you are blessed and that whatever journey your are on know that God is there.

Friday, August 8, 2008

08/08/08

I'm to tired to blog but I wanted to have a post with this date. I know I'm nuts.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Steven Curtis Chapman Family

If you did not see Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman and thier family on Good Morning America today, you missed one of the most heartbreaking, tearful, hopeful, faithful expression of love I have ever witnessed. I posted on my blog in May that if any family could take such a tragedy and make anything positive out of it, the Chapman family would. But make no mistake Mary Beth let the world know she wants her Maria back. She is a mom whose heart is shattered and grieving but knows that her other kids need her and she has to be strong. Steven Curtis mentioned he did not know if he could ever sing Cinderella again, but he will. I am just getting to the point I can listen to that song without crying, but he like his beautiful wife knows that there are other Cinderellas in his life and he needs to focus on them. They interviewed the three older kids including their son who accidentally ran over Maria. What awesome Godly kids! All I can say is they knocked me over and it was obvious God was with each of them. In the midst of their grief they are trying to seek something good. They are human, the grief is still raw and they still have questions but they know Maria is safe and whole in the arms of our Heavenly Father.
I have never missed a SCC concert when he comes to Tulsa. Last year he had all three girls with him and as he crouched down to be at their level I believe it was Maria making bunny ears behind her daddy! It was so precious. Everyone there was blessed. As I have said before I had the honor of being interviewed by Steven Curtis a couple of years ago. I am not lying, it was like sitting down with someone you have known all our life. It was amazing. I have never had the privilege of meeting Mary Beth but I feel a connection with her. I have no clue why but I do.
I know the Chapman's do all they do for the glory of God. Today was their crowning moment. You had to be a stone not to be moved and desire to know this God who gives them the strength to get through this.
They had inspired me to get The Hug Away Foundation up and going and to start an adoption ministry at my church. Today they inspired me and touched my heart in ways I did not know was possible. Please keep them in your prayers. It was so evident that life goes on but they are still overwhelmed with grief. I just want the to thank the Chapmans for being real. We love you!

ADD ON!
The family was on Larry King live. Again you see God in everything they say and do and again I am amazed.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Ramblings in the morning

It is early Saturday morning. I should be sleeping in but nooo... I had a very restless night, no clue why. I have a busy day planned so I will regret it later.
I think part of my problem is my brain never shuts down. Anyway I felt like blogging so this will just be ramblings.
Oh, where do I start? Hmm... I am looking for a way to earn extra money. I have an office cleaning business so if you read this blog and live in the Tulsa area and know of anyone who could use my services, let me know. I am also plagued by guilt. I have a million pictures that I would like to see in scrapbooks and I have no clue when I will ever get that done. To chill I make earrings which has been a surprise blessing. I took some to work one day and they sold and it has turned into a nice little side business. Who knew! Hopefully I can find time to make some for the fall.
I have friends in Vietnam at this moment. They are there to meet and bring home their sweet little boy. He is such a doll! People often ask me and my husband if we are going to adopt again. Well...I believe our family is complete and He has us on a new journey with Hug Away, but God may have a different plan. We never completly close our hearts to it. The truth is my heart is adoption and everything it stands for. If Mike and I had shut our hearts too adoption I would be sitting in this house right now alone. Oh, Mike would be upstairs asleep , but my boys are grown up and out on their own. They filled the first part of my life with weekends spent at ball parks, scrapes and bruises, funny movies, protecting me from spiders and mice, jokes, guy things, body noises,cars and a bond between mother and sons that is one of the most precious gifts life has to offer. The second part of my life has been blessed by adoption. What a sweet unexpected gift! Three of them. Now my life is filled with make up, fashion shows, dolls, chick flicks, pink and purple everywhere and sometimes tears. I may have not given birth to these three angels but the bond we have is just as strong and precious as the one I have with my guys. I love all of my kids the same but differently. They are all unique individuals who have special gifts and each of them needs my attention in a different way.
So as I sit here rambling in the early hours(well it was when I started) I know that somewhere in California I have a Marine, on the other side of town a son is asleep and in Kansas a son is working, here at the house 3 angels sleep.
3 trips to the hospital$$$
2 trips to Korea$$$$
1 trip to Vietnam$$$
The rewards: Priceless!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Dustin Update

I have had several people request an update on Dustin. He is doing awesome! He is stationed at 29 Palms California. He will deploy in January to Iraq or Afghanistan. He tries to call us at least once a week to let us know what he has been doing. I don't feel comfortable sharing all of that for obvious reasons. He loves being a Marine that is for sure. A mom of a Marine once told me that Marines were born not made and I believe it.
Dustin is still Dustin though! Funny, jokster living life to the fullest and always a smile on his face. He misses his family but like he told me "mom I have to do this."
He is still my baby boy and I miss him. A kid came into the office the other day who reminded me so much of Dustin it made my heart break. He was kidding with his mom like Dustin does with me, smiling the whole time. His mom said I know he is charming and funny but it does get on my nerves. I said "I know but enjoy every minute of it because before you know it you will be wishing for this time again."
People ask me how I feel about Dustin joining the Marines. Well...all Dustin ever asked me for was my blessings. For a long time that was the one thing I could not give him. As the time grew closer for him to sign the papers I was struggling. As soon as he turned 18 he was going to sign those papers with or without my blessings, but he really wanted my blessings before he signed. One day I am driving to work and I was praying for Gods guidance and His peace. All of the sudden I heard this voice say "Elaine I will take care of him." It was so loud, I looked around in the car and I thought for sure someone was in there with me. That is when I realized God had just answered me. That night I went home and gave Dustin my blessings. He looked at me smiled gave me a big hug and said "thank you mama, that is all I wanted." So that is how I feel about Dustin joining the Marines. God gave me peace because He called Dustin to do this and Dustin is being faithful and doing what God called him to do.






Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Ya Ya Sisterhood!


This week my sister Jodie came up from Texas for a visit. I am the oldest of 5 girls. We were all born and raised in San Antonio. Four of us ended up here and Jodie remained in Texas. It is very rare we all get together.

This year it seems strange that 3 of us will be in our 50's. We still act like kids when we get together. Trust me, ask the waiter at Los Cobos, I am sure he was ready for us to leave! Here is a picture of the Buchanan sisters, Elaine, Kelley, Jamie, Cathy and Jodie. Or as we sign our emails to each other #1, #4, #5, #3 and #2.
Between us we have 14 kids and I think 9 grand kids. We had it rough growing up and that made us very close. We can go weeks or even months without talking but we know without a doubt we are there for each other and we love each other. Here's to sister's!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Gina

Remember in the last post I mentioned we have those times we may not ask but wonder why? Well I have one today. I woke up this morning to the very sad news that our friend Gina died in a house fire Sunday morning in Tulsa. She worked at our dentist office and was such a sweetie. She was so good to our family and absolutely adored all of our children. She was a sweetheart. When you walked in the office you could always count on seeing Gina and a great big smile! She was only 42, and a single mom.
So today I ask you to say a prayer for Gina's family and for those of us who knew her.
God bless you Gina.

I thank my God every time I remember you. Philippians: 1-3

An update on Gina's death. They are suspecting foul play.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Held

I have several friends who are going through a lot right now. One friend and her husband have waited way to long to bring home their baby boy, one just lost her father and two friends had to make a very heart wrenching decision. They know who they are and they know I love them and my heart breaks for them. In the last five years we have lost two nephews and a niece 8 days old, 14 years old and 18 years old a 25 year old cousin and my father in law and an uncle. We all go through times when we wonder why? And as simple as it sounds the fact is only Jesus knows. But He is there to hold us and love us through it. So too my friends who are hurting and too those who read this blog and are going through a tough time and heart ache right now please just close your eyes, think of what good and wonderful things Jesus has done in your life, happy memories, like mine that I have posted in the pictures above and just imagine yourself being held and comforted by Jesus.