Monday, September 18, 2017

Two Baptisms, a Reconciliation and a First Communion!

During our time in Minnesota
we were able to catch up on some of our Sacraments!

We absolutely love Father Steve and he was so kind to preform them!

Because we moved within weeks of Jacob and Grace coming home 
we were unable to have them baptized.

It's challenging when kids come home older, 
don't know the language and have never heard of Jesus before.
We just don't fit into the traditional timeline for Sacraments.

Fr. Steve is so respectful and understanding of our unique situation.

Jake and Grace are 10 and 9 yrs old and are between languages.
They are not ready for baptismal classes.
They are infants in their faith walk.

Abby and Johnny are their Godparents!

He is so good at explaining and personalizing the 
Sacrament of Baptism.

Jacob and Grace understand how much we love Jesus and 
they are learning about how much Jesus loves them.

And now, 
it's time to head to the alter for family pictures!

It felt so good to have these two baptized
in the name of the
Father, Son and Holy Spirit!

He has such a kind heart
and gentle spirit!

God Bless these two children as the begin their faith journey!

Thank you Johnny and Abby!

It's always fun hanging out in the Narthex after church!

That same day,
in the evening
Jenny had her first communion!

She was so excited to finally get to have communion with everyone else!
(Except Jake, Grace, Joey and Luke- they're next!)

 This girl is such a blessing to our family!

Jenny looked beautiful and she was so excited and ready for her Sacraments!

Poor dear was a little shell shocked in front of the whole church...
and we may have forgotten to practice
it went well (enough)!

We celebrated with cake for all of our blessings!

Auntie Barbie and Auntie Mimi joined us for the Sacrament and the celebration afterwards!
It was such a joy to have them there!

Mimi brought arts and crafts for the kids
since we had no TV in our MN home
(bc we were moving out).

Now we are back on track! Jenny is with her siblings her age.
(8 kiddos all together!)
They are ready to start Confirmation in the spring!

Our four oldest girls just started Confirmation this fall
and will be done in the spring!

The four youngest kids are all at the same place.
We just need Grace and Jacob to understand English a little better
and then they are good to go!

Feeling extremely

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Breaking the Silence

Just to let you know right off the bat...
there is nothing huge going on.

We are all fine and living life.

But there have been a few things
that have kept me from blogging.

1. Confusion of dealing with a child that has RAD-
the ups and downs and the ins and outs of RAD
are very challenging.
Wondering what we should do for that child 
and then implementing the plan.

2. 70,000 pictures (gulp), not in chronological order... on my computer. 
Although I am thankful for each and every one of them, 
I am finding that it takes so much time trying to find "the pics for the post".

3. Most of our kiddos are now teens and tweens
and they need a lot of my time and attention.
I thought it would be easier but it's not!
They need stuff to do (keep 'em busy and close so they stay out of trouble)!
We need to process (talk about) everything that happens with them 
(Oh, my goodness teens talk and talk and talk- usually about nothing 
but every once in awhile you get some good conversation going)!
 We need to just hang out, have fun together while meeting all of their needs 
and trying to have a moment as a couple!

4. Moving was a bigger project than we expected.
Trying to find the Drs for all of the children's special needs.
I'm finally figuring out where things are and 
I no longer need my phone for directions 
(just sometimes, now)...
Finding a new church and getting used to the way they do things.

5. Trying to make new friends but 
not having much time to spend with those new friends.

6. Nervous as to how we will be received in our new surroundings. 
Let's face it we are large and awkward...
sometimes we are loved and warmly greeted
while other times we are a crowd and "in the way".

7. Finding activities for the 14-16 kids that are affordable!
That's an oxymoron and darn near impossible!

8. Attempting to home educate 14-16 kiddos from where their at...
btw- each one is "at" a different place! 
While taking into consideration their individual special learning needs...

I have missed blogging.
Your emails and messages were so kind~

It is my plan to get back to it, asap!
In fact, hopefully right away.

Blogging helps me to see the joys instead of focusing on the challenges.
It helps me recall the fun and love we have within our family.
It is a wonderful way to "scrapbook" this journey God is taking us on!

I hope that our blog is encouraging to others!
I hope that others see how God is working in our lives!

I'm sorry for the long silence.

God's Blessings to YOU!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Food, Fun and Fellowship!

We were so blessed this spring(May 25th) 
to have guest 
visit us!

One of our priests from our church in MN-
 Holy Name of Jesus,
Medina, MN
brought his Catholic Studies class
from the University of St Thomas
to do mission work for the poor in Denver, CO.

They worked with Christ in the City
and Friends of the Poor
while they were here! 

And then they came to our home
for some fun, food and fellowship!

18 students,
 3 chaperones,
1 priest,
16 children 
2 parents

Our children loved the time they spent 
with the students and chaperones!

Everyone played games!
Foosball, four square, ping pong, pool,
air hockey, jumped on the trampoline,
visited the puppies and talked and talked and talked!

It was such a joy filled time in our home!

There was some tough competition going on
at our house!

Good job Fr. Howe!
Sarah won!

Preparing for our guests was a family affair!
Picking up the house and getting the food ready!

They were such a wonderful group of students
eager to serve the poor and show the love of Christ to others!

After the initial fun it was time for the FOOD!

We are used to feeding 18 on a daily bases
so 20 more just meant 
we had to double everything!

It was easy!

It was so wonderful seeing
We LOVE Colorado but
a little bit of time with
Minnesotan was
good for our soul!

We set up many different places for people to eat at
throughout the house!

The students were so friendly and 
 mingled with the kids
throughout their time at our home!

The children LOVED it!

So many great conversations going on all at the same time!

I just noticed that Matthew was spelled wrong... oops!
Oh well, it's still a great message!

May 25th was a big day-
 three people had birthdays!
It was Stephen's(standing in the plaid shirt), our Grace's and my birthday!
Plus Fr. Howe's ordination day!

So much to CELEBRATE!
They sang to each of us and 
they had beautiful voices!

They sang to each of us and 
they had beautiful voices!

God's presence was felt!

It was Grace's first birthday home!
What a wonderful way to spend it!

So much laughter and JOY!

The whole crew!
(I think)

And then it was time to share-
 about their service
about our journey in our faith,
in business,
in marriage,
in adoption,
and in service to our Lord!

They had many questions about our large family life.

We hope that we touched hearts
for adoption.

147 million orphans...

It's not hard to love just one more...

Our children have blessed us in unimaginable ways.

I pray that others will open their hearts to adopt and will

It was hard to say goodbye!
Everyone had so much FUN!

Clean up was snap with
16 adorable helpers!

Perfect timing!
Garbage pick up was the next morning!

Thanks GOD,
for today!