Friday, May 13, 2011

New Blog

Well, I don't know what happened to the post where I asked if anyone out there had success in changing their blog over to Wordpress, but I made the change while blogger was down (for the past 2 days).

We can now be found at  (You can click on the title of this post above to go directly there). Come on over and check it out.  Blogspot is not viewable in certain parts of the world (including the part we hope to move to).  So, we've switched over to a blog host that is viewable.  Hope to see you there!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Changing our Blog

Has anyone out there changed their blog from blogspot to wordpress or anything else?  Blogspot is not accessible in some parts of the world, so I'm feeling like we may need to change ours over before we head overseas, but I would HATE to lose everything that's already here.  If you've moved yours and have been able to import all your old blogger posts, please let me know how you did it!
Thanks a million.

Monday, May 09, 2011


How fun! I wish I knew who viewer 20,000 was on this blog, but I just logged on and became viewer 20,001. I've been at this since October of 2006. I started out posting one new picture a day just to keep far away family up-to-date. There was about a year in there where I didn't blog at all and then I started back up with our recent adoption and I don't see stopping anytime soon. Thanks for checking in!

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Mother's Day...good again

Warning...this is another one of those heavy thoughts posts, so if you hate 'em, skip it.

Mother's day has been hard for me for the past few years. You see, this is not the first time that I've been the mother of three kids. In 2005, I celebrated my first Mother's Day with these two munchkins (and VERY pregnant with a third). It was a good day.
In 2006, I was supposed to celebrate Mother's Day with these three, but something happened the day before Mother's Day that I will never forget.
One of our foster boys had a "special needs" moment that started us down the process of losing both boys. It was crushing. These two boys that I had planned to adopt and had loved as my own for the past two years were slipping away. Mother's day hasn't been the same since then. It's been hard. I have wanted to celebrate. I had two beautiful biological boys that were still with me and who love me very much. I have the very best mom that a kid could ever hope for, but something (more specifically, two of my kids) were missing. It doesn't help that it all started that Mother's Day weekend either.

This year, however, I haven't dwelt on the sadness of that. This Mother's Day has been good and I've just let it be about celebration. I'm enjoying my day and I'm glad. It could be that having three kids again has healed some of that. It could be that time has healed my heart some more. I don't really know. I just know that I've enjoyed this day. I got hand made gifts and cards from my kids. My husband sent one of my boys into my room this morning with a menu and I got breakfast, of my choosing, in bed. Chris worked with Kayla on saying "mama" and she came into my room saying "mama, mama, mama". She's said it before, but not for quite a while and it felt good. We went to church where I got a cute flower and then home for lunch with my parents, brother and his wife. Now, the kids are napping and Chris is at work, but it's a beautiful day and we're going to enjoy pizza in the park once everyone is up. I'm loving today. It's a good day...thank goodness! I still miss my other two boys & I always will, but these three have made my day.

Friday, May 06, 2011


Our denomination recently held their district council. Chris and I attended because I was a part of the credentialing service. I received my ministerial credentials almost a year ago, but this services was a recognition of that.
My mom and dad got to pray over us, which was very special.
I don't know if Reverend Elysabeth Meehan will ever sound "normal" to me!


This spring has been a bit rough--lots of snow and rain, not too much sun or warmth. We have had a couple of decent days and we've enjoyed every minute of them. S'mores are a favorite around here. We had a fun little fire outside and roasted some marshmallows one spring evening. We're hoping there's more good weather headed our way soon.


Took some great photos

Found some more eggs

Played at the park AND had Roth visit
Easter was great this year

Egg Hunting

Some friends hosted an egg hunt for our young marrieds group. The boys had tons of fun and got lots of junk.

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Ethiopian head spinning (Kayla style)

Okay, first you have to watch this video of this Ethiopian woman doing a traditional Ethiopian dance that involves an insane amount of head movement.

Then, you need to watch these strung together clips of my baby girl. This is how she always dances. I have seen many babies dance, but none like this. I don't know why she does this, but it's adorable and a little baby version of the other clip (at least in my opinion).

She also does the shoulder shrugging dance (if you've ever seen that Ethiopian one), but apparently the beat of this song wasn't hitting her that way. We'll have to capture that one some other day.

More on missions

The number one question we get is "where are you going?". Short answer, we don't know. We don't necessarily get to choose. We apply, our denomination's missions department decides whether or not we're approved, then a specific location/job is selected. After that, we start the whole fund raising process. Right now, all we've done is submit our application. We haven't even been approved yet, so we don't know where we're going. Of course, we're allowed to put down our preference and we're a part of the decision making process. Our hearts are in/for Ethiopia. That is where we would like to go. The exciting thing is that I have discovered that their are opportunities there. However, I firmly believe that God will put us where He wants us and I will not pretend to know where that is. So, we'll see!

Sunday, May 01, 2011


This blog has followed/highlighted all of our adventures...foster care, babies and adoption--to name a few--so I figure it'll follow our journey into missions, as well. No worries, I'll still be posting cute pictures and video clips of the kids--I have a killer one of Kayla doing her Ethiopian head spinning dance--but I also plan to take some time to focus on our journey into the completely unknown.

A good friend recently asked me why we were going into missions--what our intended purpose is. I suppose there are a many different reasons that a person would choose to go into missions, but here's mine:

I grew up as a PK (pastor's kid). I've always been taught think about others and respond to their needs. My parents had me volunteering at a very young age. They took me on my first foreign mission trip when I was only 12. We spent 7 weeks in Europe and my dad preached at some youth camps in what was then Yugoslovia and Hungary. We also toured some and visited many different countries. When I was 16, I went on another trip to Romania and worked with children and visited orphanages. I believe that it was on that trip that my eyes were truly opened to the differences between my world and how so many others live. A desire to do something with missions or social service started at that point. When I was 18, I graduated high school a semester early and moved to Belgium where I worked with some missionaries for 3 months. In college, I participated in two state-side mission trips and just last year, Chris and I spent a week in El Salvador doing medical missions work. This was his first trip and he had a definite God moment on that trip that led him to also want to pursue missions, but that's really his story to tell so you'll have to ask him if you want more details. I guess you could say my whole life has been leading up to this. It's just that now it finally seems like the right time.

Does that answer why? Maybe 1/2 of it. The other half is that I want to make a difference. There are basic social needs that must be met in other parts of the world. AIDS is something you almost never hear about in the US anymore, but it is still making orphans on a daily basis in Africa. Fistula is a word I had never even heard before going to Ethiopia, but this is a minor medical issue that causes thousands of women to be ostracized and left to die. A simple surgery often fixes the problem in just a few minutes and a little education before the problem is created would do even more. (If you have Netflix, I highly recommend A Walk to Beautiful if you want to learn more about this specific issue.) My heart's desire is to meet some of these social needs. But I also know that meeting a social need doesn't do anything to impact someone's eternity. So, we will take the message of Christ's love with us while meeting these basic needs.

I believe that God asks each and every believer to do this on some level. I just think that God is asking us to do this in this way right now. If you have questions...ask them. I am not easily offended and am happy to answer anything. We really are excited about this journey. I don't know where it will lead or how long it will last, I just know that God is asking us to be willing and we are.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

More Walking

For a few days after Kayla took her first steps, she didn't really seem interested in walking at all. Yesterday, after a few physical therapy exercise, I could tell she was interested again and down right determined to do it. At one point, she even went from sitting to standing on her own (a new trick) and then took a few steps to get to me. I was pretty amazed that she could do that and put it all together. I got a couple of video clips of her doing this--one from yesterday and two from today. She took 11 steps at one point today!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


So, I've posted a little bit about this before, but Chris and I have been working on our application for foreign missions for a few weeks now. I thought we had to wait until we got an SS number for Kayla before we could apply, but I wanted to get the rest of the application done anyway. So, last night we finished the whole thing and then I hit "next" thinking this would take me to a page where I could review the application but then a little box popped up that said "Thanks for submitting your application". So, I guess that's done! We have now officially applied to become Missionary Associates. It's going to take a while and a lot of work, but we're excited and can't wait to see what God has planned for us and our family. We have found some very intriguing opportunities that would last 1-2 years. We really don't have any information beyond that, but you can be sure that as we learn more over the next year, or two, that we will keep you posted!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Cutest Video

I realize I have over-posted today, if that is possible, but this is maybe the cutest video ever and must be shared!


As promised, here are many photos from our Texas trip. Kayla and I had a great time. I wish Texas were a little closer to Wisconsin!
Erin and Brian with Kayla
Kayla loved this little doggie at our lakeside picnic

Brian swears that it was all the practicing with him that lead Kayla to take her first steps yesterday :)
We tried to get all four babes to look, but it just wasn't going to happen (Lily, Maeve, Kayla & Eli)
Just the girls (Eli didn't sit still for very long)
These four were all adopted through the same agency and were at the same care center in Addis Ababa before coming home with us
Baby girls chatting about something
The zoo really tired Kayla out
Picnic at the zoo (thanks, Joanna)

Beautiful Japanese garden
Petting zoo--Kayla was not a huge fan
At the Stockyards in Ft. Worth. Kayla's a cute little cowgirl and I even tried red cowboy boots on her. I was tempted to but them, but just couldn't justify the $40 for shoes she'd only wear a few times!

Swimming at 6:30 pm at Erin's old apartment complex. It was so warm and Kayla never can resist the water!
It really was a great trip! Kayla was great on the plane--napped for most of both flights. We'd love to make it an annual thing, but we'll see.

Cute hair

I decided it was time to try a new hairstyle with Kayla. These are called finger twists. You just grab some hair and twist away. It only took about 20 minutes to do her whole head. She sat pretty well through it and it lasted a couple of days. I didn't use any product in it other than Chrissy's Babycakes Body Butter ( because I didn't really intend to do her whole head. I just wanted to see if her hair was finally long enough to pull this off. She sat so well and it was so easy that I just kept going. It was pretty cute!

Fun Meeting

Through our adoption I have met many great people. Some are far Texas (boo)...others are not so far away (yea). A couple of days ago, my friend, Kelly, and her two little boys--just home a few weeks ago--came over. It was great to meet the boys and introduce Kelly to Kayla. Adoption is such a wild ride, it is important to have support while you're going through it and once your kid(s) are home. And how fun for our kids to have these friends as they grow up!Gavin and Colton (2)
Kayla and Aschton (1)

Reily does a somersault

In case you've been wondering what Reily's been up to since this blog has kind of become all about Kayla, now you get to see. He has learned how to somersault. I love this video because you can see his goofiness and hear his infectious laugh. Oh how I love this little boy!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Kayla's First Steps

Well, these are almost her first steps. Technically these are steps 5, 6 and 7...!!! I had Kayla stand up and then let go with my hands out (which I've done a million times) and to my utter amazement she moved one foot and then the other. I cheered and hugged her. Then she did it again! The boys came up from downstairs to see what all the commotion was about and I set up the camera and caught steps 5, 6 and 7. Shortly after this, she took 7 steps in a row (twice), but who's counting?!? Go baby girl, go! (Please ignore the frumpy mama and the vaseline faced baby--it was supposed to be a go nowhere, see no one kind of day)

Monday, April 18, 2011

Home again

home again, jiggity jig.

Kayla and I had an amazing time in Texas and as much as I was ready to come home, I hate that all my friends are so far away again. Pictures will follow in the next day, or two. For now, I'm exhausted and need to crash...

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Up, up and away

Kayla and I are going on a little trip. We are going to visit some adoption friends and one of my college friends--who actually introduced me to Chris and was a roommate for a while. I'm really looking forward to this trip, especially since we'll be in Texas while snow is predicted in WI!

We'll be meeting two friends for the first time--gals who adopted little girls from the same care center that Kayla was at around the same time as us. We all did our best to check in on each others girlies while we were in Ethiopia at different times. I'm really looking forward to meeting these two and getting our girls back together. You can check out their adorable girls here and here

We will also be seeing Heather again. She was on both trips to Ethiopia with us to adopt her son. I am seriously excited to see her and her son. I just can't wait to see his little personality.

I don't know how Kayla will fare on the plane. The last time she was on one was kind of monumental! Hopefully she does well. It's a pretty short and direct flight, so I think it'll be okay. I hope she loves the sunshine and warmth. I can't wait to get her in some summer clothes. I hope she enjoys seeing all these kiddos again, too. I'd love to think they could remember each other, but they're all pretty young.

My college friend, Erin, is a photographer and a great one at that. She's going to take some great photos of Kayla and I can't wait for that either! You can check our her fabulous work here (and if you live in Texas and need a photographer she is really, really good)

Well, I have some packing to do and I have to be up before the sun rises. I'm sure I'll have loads of photos to share once we're home. Hopefully Chris and the boys survive in my absence!

Sunday, April 10, 2011


Spring has finally made it's way to WI. It is 70+ degrees outside and MUGGY! We took advantage of it and did some yard work while the kids napped. We got quite a bit done and found a few surprises along the way.Daffodils just about ready to bloom. I hope I don't miss them while in Texas.
First flower of the season. The white one made it, the purple one didn't.
Nope, we don't have waterfront property, but each spring this "river" returns. The boys love it.
A little bit of snow desperately hanging on.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

First Picnic

Yesterday it was nice out. It was about 55 degrees and sunny. I picked up a pizza and the kids thought it would be fun to have a picnic in the driveway, so we did! If you don't live in WI, you may think we're nuts, but we're so sick of winter we did not mind picnicking next to the snow banks. We've decided winter is done even if it is hanging on for dear life. DONE.

Egg Tree

One of our neighbors decorated an outdoor tree with plastic eggs. The boys loved it, so I figured we could do the same. I won't say it was peaceful or loads of fun, but the tree looks cute and I got some good pictures.

This is Reily's "crazy face" according to him. He's a goofy boy.