Monday, June 7, 2010

Very Special Mothers Day!

We spent Mothers Day weekend in Orange Park with our families and it was just wonderful because our Hannah Banana was with us! We spent Saturday with Sam’s parents at the farm and the kids loved spending time with them, Sarah & Brennan and Cody! That’s right… we even got to see Cody for a little while. Hannah was Sarah’s little shadow all day and she thinks Sarah and Brennan are the coolest ever. She told all her siblings when she got back about them and recited several funny things Brennan said and even called them her “best friends”, it was really sweet.

Cindy also flew down from TN to surprise Aunt Sandra and although I could have done without the stress of coordinating the big surprise it all worked out in the end and we had a great time. We ate a fancy lunch that Hannah STILL talks about and I absolutely LOVED spending the afternoon catching up with Cindy! Sammy was over the moon happy to have his Aunt “Nendy” back to tickle and love on him.

We had a very sweet family moment before church. It meant so much to have Hannah with us on that day and to have her run in the room with Sammy and “attack” me with hugs and tickle me as they brought me their cards. Sam wrote the sweetest thing in my card from him. He always writes the most romantic stuff and of course I eat it all up. He’s a big softie. Along with the typical mushy stuff, he wrote ….thank you for being such a great mommy to our son and “stand in” mommy for so many children.

DSC04824(my amazing husband even captured the moment! Here we are in all our pj glory but I sure love this picture, I will NEVER forget that moment)

I thought about that a lot throughout out the day and I just kept thanking God for choosing ME to work in their lives. Little me. I am so far from perfect and have so much to work on in my own life and have made lots of mistakes a long the way yet He still wanted to use me and I am so glad He has. I am so honored to have such a role in not only Hannah & Cristina’s lives but the others too. God could have used so many other more qualified people to love on these kids who need some extra special mommy type loving. I mean seriously, when I was first matched with Hannah she was 5 years and 1 week old, these are critical years for her. My whole hope for even joining this program was to show God’s love to a little girl who really needed it in hopes that He may be able to offset some of the junk in her life by showing her that she is so very special. I hope she will always remember that she makes all the difference in the life of our little family.

It really is all about God. I couldn’t do it without Him. He gives me patience when I feel like I could lose my mind, He puts words in my mouth at just the right times when we have certain conversations or she “tries” me, He gives me nudges of when to do things and when to hold back, and most importantly, it really is His arms that hold her and wipe her tears away through me, if that even makes sense. I don’t mean to sound like the movie Ghost or anything but I really believe he loves on His little princess through me or rather us. We try our very best to show her unconditional love, agape love. At first it was so hard. She tried to push us away and test us and do terrible things to see if we would still want her. Every once in a while we still have those moments but we are all in such a good spot right now. I know that she knows deep in her heart that we love her regardless of what she does (yes even when she rips my favorite curtains out of the wall leaving a giant hole for Sam to repair). Oh my Banana. I love you girl. She and her siblings bring me so much joy (and headaches at times, but for the most part joy) and I have been changed in so many ways just from welcoming them into our family.

I have told Sam I feel like we are in the “in between” some when it comes to Hannah and Cristina. I am only a mommy to one amazing little boy. Thank you Jesus for your gift of him! These two girls though, they stole our hearts and are so much more to us than a “sponsor child” and a “little sister”. They are part of us yet not in actuality. I know that makes probably zero sense but it is hard to describe because they are rather unusual relationships. I get the honor of pouring out mommy love on them as best I can yet I don’t get to spend the every day with them. It can be a hard spot to be in at times and I often felt the urge to guard my heart early on in these relationships but then, if I had, look at what we would have missed out on. All of us! The “in between” is a great place to be and a painful place to be at times but I know it is RIGHT SMACK in the middle of where GOD wants us to be and so we will keep on loving them with all we have within us!

I will leave you with this verse, this is a verse I have found comfort in and been encouraged by, especially in regards to parenting so it seems most appropriate to include here. "I [God]will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I [God] will counsel you with My [God's] eye upon you..." Psalms 32:8.

A few pics from our special day….

At church:


I miss my Gram so much each day and often think of how I wish I could call her up or tell her something so we had to stop by and take a pic with her stone. One of the stones at the church I grew up in is Gram’s. Hannah has heard many stories about Grandma and always says she can’t wait to meet her in heaven one day so she was (as you can see) VERY excited to take a picture with the stone. She just knew “with all my heart Teri, really” that Gram would love the little doggies she placed on the stone. Love.


Here is the big surprise moment in the hotel lobby! It was great but boy were those 20 min leading up to it drama filled and stress-ful! I barely got Aunt Sandra there and I basically had to BEG her and Uncle Tom to turn their car around on the way home from church to meet us there, oh good times in deed.


Going in for the hug….


This was after we told her of all the drama that ensued to get her there


Uncle Tom, Cindy, and Aunt Sandra

DSC04833 DSC04834

Hannah LOVED being a fancy lady for the day.. check out the desert she picked out, oooh la la!

DSC04835 DSC04838

Of course Sammy had to try one just like Hannah and begged for “green one” even though I knew he wouldn’t like it but thankfully we just got him another one that was banana pudding and he was one happy camper!

DSC04839 DSC04841

Cheese faces all the way, they are two peas in a pod!


RP and PeeWee together again, good times.. watch out OP!


Cindy was supposed to be in this pic but she had wandered off and Hannah decided to eat her bracelet


So I made them take a redo! =)


Fun times at Mom’s after lunch


Richard got mad bonus points for lifting Hannah up to put bird seed in the feeder, she is not the lightest thing to lift


Pool Time! We had so much fun in Aunt Sandra’s pool


Sam, Sammy, and Hannah all did a suprise attack game, so cute!

DSC04886 DSC04887

Here is a quick video of their game, I just love it. It is only 8 seconds…but so worth all 8 seconds of your time. Aren’t they simply the best??