Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Happy gotcha anniversary!

Today we celebrate getting Dariya out of her orphanage THREE years ago.

I can't even believe that it has been that long.

She delights us everyday with her sweet smile and loving spirit.

I am so thankful that God took us on that journey to Ukraine.

My life is crazy most of the time but, I wouldn't have it any other way.

I love you dearly, Dariya!

Also, 13 years ago my sweet Englishman immigrated to the US.

I am extremely blessed and can't imagine life without either one of my foreigners!

God has put our family on the bench for adopting (suck it cancer) but he still calls us to help orphans.  I still think about those sweet children that we visited with each day while we were visiting Dariya for those 5 weeks.  Those faces still etched in my mind forever.

I can't physically save each of them but, I still can pray and donate to orphans.

We are helping our local church friends, Nancy and Todd Bartelt bring home their sweet Vera from China. We pray that you will honor Dariya by donating to the Bartelt's today.
To go to their tax deductible Reece's Rainbow link click  here.  

Every dollar counts and they still need to raise about $16K and will be traveling as early as July 30th!  So PLEASE donate today!

Dariya's gotcha day video still makes me cry!

video

Friday, July 4, 2014

Happy 4th of July!



We hope you have a safe and happy 4th!

Thanks to Nancy Pfeifer for the adorable outfits!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Dariya's weighted blanket

While the girls were off enjoying communication camp for two weeks, Aidan and I decided to finally make Dariya's weighted blanket.  Alayna absolutely loves her blanket I made for her months ago.

We used the same directions as for Alayna's .

After a couple hours of pressing, pinning, sewing and measuring we were all finished.

We were very pleased with the outcome.

Alayna loves it!

Unfortunately, Dariya isn't a real fan, she still has residual fear of being held down from orphanage life.  So while it is really pretty I don't think it will get much use by the intended party.

Last I checked Alayna was sleeping with both blankets on top of her!  LOL  Whatever works I guess.



Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Three years ago today...

We stood in a hot Ukrainian courtroom and appealed for this sweet girl to be ours.

Here is my original post if you haven't seen it.

We are so grateful for her in our lives.

I really can't remember life without her.

She has grown so much and jumped over so many hurdles.

I still get teary eyed when I watch her dance or read as I know she would have never had those or nearly any opportunities in Ukraine.

Happy adoption day, Dariya Joelle!

We love you to the moon and back.  I am sure there will be ice cream to celebrate tonight!

If you would like to honor Dariya, we would be thankful if you Follow this link to our friends Todd and Nancy Bartelt's Reece's Rainbow FSP and make a tax deductible donation.  You see Dariya played a little part in their adoption story....we love how God weaves that tiny thread between us all.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Our week in pictures...

I have been a total blog slacker....no excuses but, it is summer and we are having too much fun to slow down.  This time last summer I couldn't keep up with the kids so this summer I am running on overdrive trying to have as much fun as we can drink in.

My sis in law, Trudy gave me a kick in the pants and said I needed to update so here you are my sweet sister.

Here is our week in review.

We have had some mad English cheerleaders (obviously they weren't cheering loud enough!)



My volunteers have been working overtime to get all the letters out and collect donations for the Voices for Vera, adoption fundraiser we are holding July 19th at Kaw Prairie Community church for our dear friends who are adopting sweet little Vera from China. Click on the link to donate to their adoption!  http://reecesrainbow.org/77816/sponsorbartelt


Aidan attended Heartland day camp at our church last week and had a blast horseback riding, doing archery and learning about Jesus.
The girls are in extended school year, three mornings a week.  Having fun with their Ms. Juanita and Ms. Brenda.

Then they are going every afternoon to communication camp for two weeks.  This is through the speech and language department at the University of Kansas.  They are having the time of their lives!  I seriously couldn't pull Alayna away from her leader at pick up yesterday.  Instead Kaitlin had to walk Alayna to the car and put her in!

Dariya is singing the camp song, "You've got a friend in me!"

While the girls are at camp, Aidan and I (Grace and Rayne) have been taking in some of the sights of Lawrence and the University of Kansas.

We picked up a little culture at the art museum.




Played around at the Natural history museum.


Went swimming and had ice cream, more than once.  Shh, don't tell the girls!


Overall, we are having a fabulous summer and I couldn't be more thankful for hanging out and enjoying my kids.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Access dance recital

The girls had their annual dance recital this afternoon.

Alayna was very excited.  Dariya, however was grumpy and got very overwhelmed in the waiting to go on stage time.  Like fall on the floor and cry, Dariya.  Seriously?

She pulled herself together enough to join Geb's harem!  He is crazy good with the ladies!


Once distracted and on stage both girls did a great job.

It was fun to see how far they had come since starting dance last year.

We are so thankful to the volunteers who give up each Sunday to come and work with our girls!  They are a huge blessing.

For any locals, the girls will be dancing Sunday June 8th at 1:30-2ish at Old Shawnee Days.  Come out and have some fun with us.






Friday, May 23, 2014

Goodbye preschool

School is out for summer!  Well, besides esy ;)!

The girls have successfully finished pre K and had their celebration and certificate ceremony on Wednesday.

The kids sang two songs and our girls did a great job (video at the bottom).

It was so cute to see them dancing and singing with their class.  Inclusion works!

We are grateful but sad to say goodbye to all the preschool teachers.  Ms. Juanita, Ms. Brenda, Ms. Jana, Ms. Corey have had the girls for 3 years now!  That earns you all gold medals and a place in our hearts.

Bless Ms. Corey's heart she gets to follow the girls on to their elementary school!  YAY!

We are also thankful to Ms. Heather, Ms. Marti and Ms. Julie for working with the girls during their preschool days.

Our girls love school and I credit that to the awesome teachers that they have had thus far.



You can't miss the girls front and center!  Alayna dances the whole way through and Dariya is signing along with the music.
Enjoy!



Look out kindergarten, here we come!