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We are glad you stopped by, we hope you are blessed, and enjoy your stay. We discuss a little bit of everthing here, from homeschool, parenting, adoption, farming, our faith, and our plain lifestyle. May God Bless Your Day!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Travel Plans are coming together

We have our flights booked
We leave Wed. Jan 4th
Gotcha Day is Jan 8-a Sunday
there will be 2 less orphans in the world!! Praise God!!!
Our Consulate Appt is not until Jan 19, and our flights home won't be until Sunday the 22nd.
our trip will be a bit longer than at first hoped for, but, we are soooo happy with the flights, the cost of them, and the connections, it all seems PERFECT!!!
Leaving from Madison this time-only a  1 1/2 hr drive, and getting in on Sunday at 4 pm-PLENTY of time to get home and spend time together our first night!! oh, how I look forward to that homecoming!! And a small airport, so we will be in and out of there in NO TIME!!!
We are flying United, our first trip overseas without flying a country-specific airline.
I am thinking it may be nice this time to have Americans around us all the time, and have food that we can handle.
Kendell is not a huge fan of "fancy" eating, so I hope she can get enough to eat while in Guiyang. From other ap's who have been there, not a lot of American food to be had-we may have to order room service a few times as even the KFC food is spicey we have heard. I will probably be packing a few more snacky foods than I first thought about-good ole peanut butter crackers or cheesey crackers always works in a pinch.
We are so thankful to all who helped us with our fundraising.
Between the tshirt sales and mail-in checks, we have enough for our in-country "living" expenses.
We are putting together our travel itinerary, so will post more info on our plans once that is nailed down-hopefully we will know more tomorrow.
We are nesting.
The house is being cleaned, we are re-organizing, finding bunk-beds for the girls' room, cleaning closets, stashing stuff that we don't need right now, and I am trying to imagine how it will look upon our arrival back home when Daddy has been in charge for 18 days!!!
I may hire someone to come in the last few days and do some major cleaning so we can come home and just CHILL for a few days and get adjusted!!!
Well, hoping for SOME sleep tonight-and more good news tomorrow

Monday, December 19, 2011

Ta Da!!!!!! TA!!!!!

We are thrilled!
We are humbled!
We are delighted with the news that our daughters are coming home to us
in January!!!
We have our official TA-Travel Approval from China!!!
OH MY, the list of things to do!!!
BUT, keeping it all in perspective,
the best news is

Rosalyn Hannah Waughtal

and Lilianna Grace Waughtal


Delighting in His goodness, Honored to be busy about His work, and
Thrilled to be meeting them in about 2 weeks.
Although nothing is concrete at this time.
We are waiting for our ConsulateAppointment, and the whole trip works back from that date, which looks to be around Jan17-18.
tears of  joy, lots of Halleluah's, and grinning from ear to ear!!!
Rejoice with us
Kendell, you have 2 sisters, and they will be sharing your room by Jan 22, 2012:)
In Him,
One happy Mama and Baba

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Emotions are running HI

and I'm not doing so well this weekend
another year older
a cold/sinus issue &
tears are coming pretty easy
another week goes by without TA
all I want for Christmas is our Travel Approval!!!
we are on day 9 of our TA wait
others have been getting them on day 8
yes, it's the weekend
it's always a weekend, or a holiday for our paperwork
I am feeling tied in knots
I am restless, anxious, and
I just want to go get my 2 girls and bring them HOME!!!
Finances are coming together, but we are still seeing some pretty big gaps in what is due and what we have on hand-
Maybe Monday.....


Saturday, December 3, 2011

Look at the view outside MY bedroom window

It was a picture perfect scene
4 horses
a beautiful sunny morning
golden leaves falling from the trees

they were running and playing and teasing one another
the frost was the thickest we had so far this year-it was so heavy, it looked like snow

I am thinking it is a beautiful reminder to take each day in stride,
to count our blessings, instead of looking for something to complain about
I was not sure I liked our valley when we first moved here-I only saw a bottom, and I am used to looking down from on top of the hills

BUT, who could not love a site like this,
with the sun shining over the hill, down into our little haven?
God is certainly tolerant of me and my list of likes and don't likes, and thankfully, He is in the business of changing our hearts to be more like His. I am seeing more beauty in this place He has placed us, and feeling more peace, and seeing His hand in our lives, and loving where He has us, for as long He keeps us here.
Blessings dear friends!
In Him
I took these pictures a month ago, wrote this 3 weeks ago, but just had to have them posted-too pretty to pass up !!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Paper Pregnancy-I am ready to be mama again :)

We are approaching our 9th month of paper pregnancy.
Yes, this has been a f ast adoption
NO, I don't feel like it has been.
To me, it seems like each step of this paperwork that happens on the US side has taken an interminably long time
Has it really been that bad?
No, but still not as fast as others I have been watching.
I think the bad thing about internet is that you know how fast some people get their paperwork thru, and you know how slow some others go
and you are NEVER content with where you are at!!
I don't think there has been one time of any adoption paperwork successes that I have truly been able to say, THANK YOU LORD, without first complaining, sighing, questioning, or any other form of murmuring!
In short, I have been acting like a brat, and I don't like it.
Each step has been pretty fast, pretty effortless, and pretty well in line with others, yet, I am always looking for something better--SIGH!
When will I learn?
When will I be able to say-Thank You God for EVERYTHING you are doing with this adoption? Even if it isn't MY timeline?
It's called having a contented heart. It's called surrendering your plans and hopes and dreams, and letting God lead. I KNOW all of that, but my brain has been telling my heart things that aren't true, and my goodness, I have been a mess because of it.
I have loved Revive our Hearts with Nancy Leigh DeMoss for 10 years-and this past week, she spoke to my heart, deeply, about contentment.
And I listened, and I GOT IT!!!
And I am surrendering ALL my plans to you Lord, and I WILL BE CONTENT, with your timing, with your plans, with your EVERYTHING involved in bringing these 2 girls home from Ch*na.
We received our USCIS provisional approval on Nov 17. 24 days after our LOA's came to our doorstep.
On Nov 25, we got an email from the National Visa Center saying our paperwork is in their system-we should be cabled-probably tomorrow-then we wait 2 weeks for Article 5 pickup, so that puts us about Dec 12. Then we get TA, which can take from 3 days to 3 weeks-and plan our travel-looks like it will be into January-unless Ch*na really does "fast track" our paperwork once we get it all back over there this week-but, God knows, and it is in His hands, and we will rest in that, and wait patiently-YES, patiently!!
We have lots of pictures of Rosalyn that I want to share, but there is one special shot that I will share for today, and leave you with this-pray for Daniel. He is Rose's foster brother, and he was one of the 3 that had to go back to the orphanage 2 weeks ago-the new, big building that the government officials needed to fill up with children, many of whom were in foster care.
pray for Rose-she misses him, yet trusts her heavenly Father to keep him safe.
Pray for our family as we prepare to head West and bring home 2 girls-soon !!!
Pray that we hear God speaking and that we have the courage to be obedient and follow where He leads.
In Him

Thursday, November 10, 2011

His banner over me is LOVE!!

Praying God's peace and protection over the ROG Foster Care Program in Guizhou.
There is much need for prayer
Tomorrow, we will know, and I don't know if I can bear the news of who will be sent back to the orphanage after living with the B's for so long in their nurturing, loving home.
See Lynnea's blog to view the precious children who are the ones possibly being sent to the state's new orphanage tomorrow, Friday, 11/11/11.

May HE lead them as the tender shepherd leads His flock,
lovingly, cautiously, gently.
May he hold them in the palm of His hand, protecting them,
strengthening them, loving them.
Oh Lord, we askk you to protect these dear ones, and
give grace to those who are watching them go back.
Protect our girl from fears, and help her to lean on you.
In Him
Chris and family

Monday, November 7, 2011

There is 1 less orphan in the world!!

On Sunday, Nov. 6, a day when many churches in the US were celebrating Orphan Sunday, there was one less orphan in Ch*na.
Little Graice Havilah joined her family, and you can see their gotcha day pics over at her mommy's blog 
We are so excited to see them become a forever family.
I am sure she is missed by her foster family, but what greater joy, knowing they have kept here, protected her, nurtured her, and now handed her off  to her mama and baba FOREVER!!!
She is such a sweet little flower. I am sure her big sister, and virtual twin brother can't wait to have her home with them.
While Gracie's mom and dad were visiting with the foster family, they were able to hand off a package from us to our Rosalyn.
We were happy to send some pictures of us all, a few fun things, like a crazy World Dairy Expo t-shirt, some crazy socks, and a writing pad to help her with her English letters and words.

We are asking you all to join us in prayer for Rosalyn and her foster family!!
They have received some news concerning some of the children in their care, and we just pray our Father, who has all the details worked out, is holding them in the palm of His hand.
We pray His peace upon them, His wisdom and discernment be poured out on them, and His will be done!
May God Bless you as you Pray!
In Him
Chris and family

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

3 girls, 3 stories, 3 homes

HOW I love this picture!!
3 girls
3 adoptions nearing completion
2 will be cousins living within 15 minutes of each other
1 will join our family and live in Wisconsin-a LONG ways from her buddies, yet, anything is possible with our God.
Josie is in the middle. Her family's blog is here.
They have PA, and are in the early stages of their LOA wait.
Gracie, the little one on the right, is 2, and will be COMING HOME
in November to a wonderful family, cousins of Josie's parents. Watch her parents' blog for her gotcha day pics on Nov. 6, sure to be sweet, and probably bring a few tears.
The above picture was taken at a KFC near the girls' foster home.
Rosalyn decided to treat her friends to an ice cream cone-gotta love that generous spirit :)

Monday, October 24, 2011


Lili's LOA came today!!
and ya know what??
They were dated the same day.
In fact, the really ironic thing is:
Hers was the first one given-
Rosalyn's was numerically 2nd!
And we got Rose's on Friday, and found out about Lili's today!
If I live to be 100, I WILL NEVER understand the ins and outs of this
crazy adoption system we endeavor to survive.
All I know is, I am praising Him for bringing these 2 girls into our lives, and
His hand will not lead us where His grace will not keep us!!!!!

We were blessed, about a week ago, to get new pictures of our little imp!
She just seems so full of smiles and happiness and energy.

My goodness, I am going to be one busy mama when we all get home together!
Now, on to the USCIS paperwork mountain that needs to be leveled before I head to bed!
Chris and family

Saturday, October 22, 2011

3 Lovely Letters

Friday, Oct 21, we received the most precious email in the world
our LOA had come from Ch@na
and we have been officially approved to be Rosalyn's family!!
Doin' the happy dance in WIS!!!
We await news of Lilianna's LOA, yet, rejoice in answers to prayer for our sweet Rose.
More mountains of paperwork to be done, more weeks of waiting ahead of us, but, TRAVEL is imminent!
We WILL be going to Ch$na to get our daughter sometime in the next couple months :)
stay tuned for more
Love and Blessings

Monday, October 17, 2011

count your blessings, count them 1 by 1

Oh the unspeakable joy of opening up emails to new pictures of our daughter.
Rosalyn, we just love your smile, your sunny outlook, your servant's heart.
How we thank God you will be coming home to us soon.
We are still awaiting our Letter of Acceptance.
We were supposed to get a faxed copy from Ch#na last week, still not here today!!
OK, I know, all in His timing, and it will all work out the way it is supposed to, when it is supposed to.
It is reassuring to hear it was being faxed-
we are preparing the remainder of our paperwork, so when we have our LOA, it is
off to the races with the final count-down to TA-travel approval.
We are one of 4 families whose paperwork is being "pushed" at our agency, due to 14th birthdays coming up-I feel confident, we are in good hands. We have time.
It's just SOOOO hard to sit back and watch the days tick off, and the ceaseless wondering, checking the computer for any emails, watching the caller ID for our agency's number.
But, oh, how sweet it will be, when finally we get on that plane, headed West.
All in His timing!!!
Blessings and Love
the picture is from Lori B, Rosalyn's foster mom-giving us a glimpse into our daughter's daily routine, before it becomes OUR daily routine!
Singing as she hangs out the laundry
and or course, all smiles

we got updated info on Lili-that post will be coming soon-with new pictures of
our little princess

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

It's the Little Things in Adoption Life

Oh the simple joys of life.
oh, the simple joys of this adoption journey.
Oh, the blessed joys of hearing our daughter say
"Hi Mommy" and "Hi Daddy"
Be still my heart!!!
Our sweet Rosalyn, what a precious gem God is giving us in you.
We were able to skype with Rosalyn at her foster home tonight. What a thrill we had when her big "sis" emailed asking if we wanted to do that, and what a panic set in when we chose a time only a few hours away, on top of an action-packed day in which we had NO time to sit down and come up with some questions or really gather our thoughts on what we wanted to say-
but, the sweet joy of seeing our daughter's face, and hearing her lovely voice-I wish I had a good video of it, but we will work harder on that end of it next time.
Tonight, we sufficed to bring all the kiddos into the camera, and Nick even showed her one of our kitties.
Rosalyn apparently likes cats and dogs, so next time, we will introduce her to our boxer pal, Sadie. Daddy thought maybe we should show her a chicken, but I think she may see enough of those where she is at!! LOL
Kendell talked with her for a few minutes and asked a few questions so I could get some pictures.

We found out she likes the color blue-so does Kendell.
The only problem is, their room is Purple!!!
I think we may be doing some painting next spring!!
She likes to eat potatoes!
Good thing, we grow a lot of potatoes in the garden, and eat them in many different way, shapes and forms.
She likes her camera we sent her, and is using it a lot.
She is learning the names of her little brothers, but doesn't always remember Nick and Kendell.
We also got to visit with our dear friend, Lynnea's daughter. They were matched with Josie last week, and now await the official word from China that she is theirs. Shouldn't be long now.  Visit her blog above for some of the great pictures she received, and the awesome video they took the day they informed Josie that she was going to be a Hameloth.
We loved her smile, her joy, and her interest in all of us. These are for you Lynnea.
Love you!!

Josie was studying the screen so hard, and Hannah B and a couple of her little charges also made it into the picture. 2 precious little ones that she and her parent's joyfully and selflessly care for through their foster care program.
we need to do this skyping again-hopefully with a little better plan next time.
We loved our 1/2 hour chat, and  hope to do it again next week.
If that doesn't get you hungry for LOA, and TA, I don't know what does.
How bittersweet-yet how awesome we are able to do this.
Smiling ear to ear tonight-and praising a mighty God who orchestrated every little detail of this for us.
Praising Him!!!

Monday, September 26, 2011

"In Process"

Don't you just love all the lingo with China adoptions?
Goodness, I don't think I will ever have it all figured out-
BUT, I do know our paperwork has been moved to a new status-that of
IN PROCESS-meaning we are in examination mode now, waiting for some very kind, smart, wonderful reviewer of adoption papers in Ch!na to APPROVE us for our 2 girls!!
Our Caseworker says things will go fast from here
I am praying so!
Some blog friends have been waiting over 100 days for their LOA's!
Some have received them in 38-40 days:)
Guess which I am hoping for?
We are going to get a care package together for Lilianna, and we have asked for an update from her orphanage. I so can't wait to see a new picture of her, and find out how she is doing-we feel like we don't even really have a clue about her, but trusting God to knit our hearts together before we even get there.
I am sorry for the lack of photos lately-my laptop has been in surgery-now it is awaiting me to retrieve it-so, we will upload a few pictures of Rosalyn
I haven't gotten any new pics of sweet Rose lately, but we will just keep digging through our collection we have gotten over the last few months-I think maybe one of her very early pics? We will see what I find!
Hopefully soon I will be able to do a big post on our end of summer activities, and you can see how much my 2 little boys are growing up and changing, right before our eyes!
Until then, May God Bless You ALL!
In Him
            Oh my sweet girl, we have missed out on so much of your life, 
but we sure hope to enjoy sharing our life with you very soon!
May God keep you safe until we bring you home--sigh!

                                love all the smiles at their little table! Can you say HAPPY?
Some fun during a family singing! I can just hear the giggles and laughs going on, can't you?
Until next time....and I found a f ew more pictues in my "archives" I hadn't seen for awhile, so now I have something else to use if my laptop doesn't come home soon  :)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

LID LID LID LID :) :) :) :)

Doin the HAPPY DANCE right now!
Heard from our caseworker, our paperwork was officially Logged Into the Ch*na system on 8/23/11. We are now OFFICIAL, and are waiting for our Letter Of Acceptance, the really official paperwork we need that approves us to adopt our girls!

Praise the Lord!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Some Pictures of our Girl

While we settle in for more waiting, I thought I should put some new pictures on the blog.
It's not that I don't think of blogging all the time, but boy, time has certainly been at a premium for me this summer.
2 little boys in therapy 1 day a week, a new living room floor, gardening/canning/freezing, yard work, house work, school preparations, medical issues, paperwork, and then you add in the regular duties of momma, laundry, cooking, cleaning, walking, Bible and prayer-WHEW!!!
We have been so blessed throughout this adoption with many pictures of Rosalyn-I thought I would share some today-We just love her sweet smile, and just can't wait to have her here with us.
 Rosalyn is part of a foster care system hosted by a wonderful family. She is pictured with some of the other children in the foster home-and her foster mom says she is a delight, and a real helper with the little ones, many of whom have some serious issues requiring lots of care.
 Rosalyn and her foster sister Josie. Josie will hopefully be soon matched with Lynnea and Steve Hamaloth of PA. Lynnea is the one responsible for bringing Rose into our lives, and we love that our 2 girls are so close now, and will be able to maintain a relationship once they are both home in the US. Lynnea's blog is here. She writes frequently, much more than I do, so if you want to really know what is going on in our life, check her blog :)
 I love this picture of the 2 girls, having fun, enjoying each other, and loving life.

 The most recent pictures we got, just last week, of the 2 girls loving on each other.

The most recent picture, sent from Rose's foster mom just this week, of Rosalyn and little baby Ellie.
 An older picture of Rose, from earlier this year, sent by another mom who has met her, and wanted to share in our joy of bringing her into our family!!
I certainly can't wait to see that beautiful smile in person, and to give her lots of hugs, and I am sure the parting with her foster family will be painful-I hurt for that pain she will be feeling.
I also hope I stay really busy throughout the fall, as it has really helped the wait time go by quickly-yes, it is still painful waiting, but is does go by when there is much to do!!!

and there will be a July post with all our family happenings, once my laptop is repaired, and we can get at all our pictures again!!!
so stay tuned, hopefully it won't be long!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A slice of summer-June

It may look like winter in this picture, but we started the month out with a graduation party for another niece, Cassie Marie!! We are so proud of her, she will be attending U of M this fall for Ag Education. She is a born teacher, she loves music, drama, ag, her family, and life!!
Our little boys have been spending quite a bit of time in their pool this summer.
Sometimes, all you can see is 2 little black heads in there, as they are both bent over their little projects...
which are quite often, aggravating one another...
Isaac has really gotten the idea that he SHOULD have whatever Isaiah has, and he makes no bones about it, when he wants it, he will really go after it!!
(Much to his big brother's dismay)

Nick and Tyler like to visit the creek-Kendell goes along to take pictures, and sometimes goes in the water, but it must be adolescence, she is much less ambitious this summer, and tends to prefer household forms of work and entertainment...

building a dam, or trying to, is the highlight of their day!! Oh to be a boy, and enjoy playing in the mud...

They really do love each other-most of the time, they even remember that!!!

this was actually a May picture of our garden when it was just getting planted-only a small portion of it!!

Here we are, with peas popping up, and tomato plants put in and next month, you won't believe the jungle out here!!!

With June comes heat, and with heat, came the need for an air conditioner. Father and son working together to get in installed and runing-Nick loves this kind of stuff, and is a great helper for his Dad.

One of the hottest days of June was also one of the most educational for my 2 oldest boys.
My Dad needed help putting a new roof on his shed-the ONLY day of the whole month that worked for all of us was a 94 degree, sticky, icky day, but Nick and Tyler were real troopers and learned somthing along the way.

My Dad was a roofer in his younger years, and he loves to show Nick and Ty how to build things, how to fix things, and how to figure things out!! Thanks Dad, I really appreciate that!!

Little Man enjoyed toddling around the shady yard and experimenting with the different tres.
First he pulled maple branches down into his face and giggled and giggled, then he played with the soft new growth on the pine trees-he is quite the goer, and it took all of us to keep an eye on him...

Grandma engaged the little boys in some catch, and rock throwing, but mainly, it was, "where's Isaac?"

After a hot day at my Dad's, we went to my mom's and she had the cousins over and the 7 kids enjoyed an evening together with Grandpa!

Isaiah was learning to actually use the pedals on the trikes-he still prefers to push himself on the ground, but we are really working with him to use the pedals!! If we had a little more cement at home, I think he would have better success...

What's that green mesh I see? It looks like fencing. It feels like fencing, IT ACTS LIKE FENCING!!!
Praise the Lord, a fence for our little toddler, who had us in fits a couple times when he "disappeared" for a couple minutes-Thanks Mom, we really needed this fence, and it has worked wonderfully all summer long-Isaac's giant play pen!!

It runs the whole length of the shed, and gives them both PLENTY of room to roam, and they actually stay pretty happy and content in here, for sometimes 1-2 hours.
The only downside to is it there is NO shade, and it can get pretty hot, but then, the pool goes in there, and they have cold, even if no shade!!

We were finally able to go to the garden and work for more than 5 minutes without someone running after Isaac and dragging him back to the sandbox, or the dirt, and then he would be off and running again-

I FINALLY got my Grandma's clematis planted in my own yard. A dear friend housed it for me for 3 years while we were in various shades of selling and buying, and it looks fabulous, and handled the move very well.

Home made pizza-can't wait to be using my own pizza sauce again-and by the looks of my tomato plants, I should have plenty of everything tomato this year!!!
Next up, July!!!