For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Thankful Thursday

A few things I am thankful for:
*My husband,of almost 15 years...he is my best friend. I am thankful for his giving and loving heart. I am thankful that he wants to provide for his family and because of that I am able to stay home and care for our children. I am thankful that he is a "hands on" dad...he loves spending time with his kiddos. God certainly blessed me and answered my prayers when he sent this man into my life.
* My six children and the gifts they are to our family. I am thankful and amazed at the way God has formed my family.
* Friends and prayer warriors.
*God's amazing creations... birds of the air, all kinds of animals, the beauty of the world around me.

"I will praise your name,O Lord,with all my heart. I will tell of all your wonders.I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name most high." Psalm 9:1-2

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Game Day

The big boys played their first game tonight. They played really well, but unfortunately they lost their game. This is a rebuilding year with very few return players. They rallied somewhat at the end but couldn't pull it out. As they learn and grow together, it looks as if we will have a really strong team. We look forward to seeing more games this season. Levi played another game tonight,as well. He loved playing; although, his game was late and he was tired. Nate will play his game tomorrow night(his first game was rained out). So, as you can see, our season is off and running.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Take Me Out to the Ball Game

Levi played his very first Tball game tonight. He was so very excited. He is a very serious ball player, and we had so much fun watching him play his heart out.

Ready and waiting in the outfield...
Working Hard to make that catch... he was able to stop it but didn't quite catch it.
Gotta get that ball to homeplate(the tongue out makes it easier to throw :-) )
Levi was "smacking" the ball all night... he had an amazing hit on this ball. In our t-ball league, the coaches pitch 3 balls and if the kids are unable to hit,they will then hit from the T. Levi hit off the coach pitches everytime...He really is a talented ball player.Watching the game with great intensity...

Can you see the pure joy on his face?... It is becoming a toss up...I think he might love baseball almost as much as his daddy.
A most important part of the game... snacktime at the end.

School Assignment...with a little help from God

Mama Bird...she usually flies over to a nearby tree if we get to close...and she scolds us soundly!
Three beautiful eggs... During the second semester of school, we have been studying about birds and insects. Our science book gives lots of good ideas for observing and watching birds. We have been so busy that we hadn't been able to accomplish many of the experiements and projects...However, we had a little help. The kids had been playing outside and left some string laying day we noticed that the string had been wrapped around our house light by the garage. Several days later,we had a birds nest. The mother robin has offered the kids many opportunities to watch nest building and egg laying/brooding. We are anxiously awaiting the hatching of the eggs. Before our studies this year,we had never paid much attention...and now we are avid bird watchers.
We saw this guy at the ballpark tonight...he was singing very loudly(and had a beautiful song)... we are checking out our field guide until we find out the type of bird he is...any guesses?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

How Great is our God...

"Be Still,and Know that I am God;I will be exalted among the nations,I will be exalted in the earth."Psalm 46:10

Mr Smiles... he is holding the finalization decree. We didn't think he realized what was going on;however, he asked the lawyer to hold the paper and wouldn't let go. He carried the paper out of court,out of the building and to the car. He spent the whole ride home looking at the paper. I am Bebi(Levi) Benjamin Smith!
Our Precious Little Boy...
Daddy took Levi and Mommy out for a celebration, and what a better way is there to celebrate than with ice cream. (Thank You Ms Shannon and Lili for staying with the other kiddos.) Just when we didn't think this week could get any better...with Mandy's baptism...,it did! Yesterday was Levi's day in court. It marked the final judgement decree, and Levi is now officially a Smith. We are rejoicing! We are certainly blessed by our awe inspiring, mountain moving, family making God!
...and to make things even better...Levi arrived in our room this morning,threw his arms around me, and of his own free will announced..."I love you,my mommy!" It certainly doesn't get any better than that!
Thank You Lord for this Precious Little One and for all of my precious gifts from you!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Singing Praises...

We are singing praises today... Mandy accepted Jesus as her Lord and Savior today! What an amazing day, that she could stand before our church and commit her life to Jesus. When we first saw Mandy's beautiful face,we knew that God had plans for her to know Jesus. When Mandy joined her family, we knew that we would teach her about Jesus. What we didn't know is that God had been preparing her heart long before He revealed her to us. Several months after Mandy had been home (and when her English was more fluent), she shared this with us..."When I was in China,I wanted to know who made the mountains,who made me? When you brought me home to America, I found out about God and that he made me." She has spent the last year devouring every little piece of information,every bible verse, everything that she can know about God, and Jesus's love for her. She has eagerly devoted her life to knowing Jesus more, and to serving him with all of her heart. As her parents, we stand in awe of the plan that God has laid out for her life, and we look forward to all that He has in store for her.

Weekend Fun

Garrett chose a paintball party as his birthday celebration this year. Upon arrival, we checked in, celebrated first with a cake and drinks,and then the guys got suited up and ready for play. Since it was a requirement that all players be 10 yrs old, the younger kids stayed behind with mom. Dad went with the older boys(you know that it was such a hard choice for him,haha). Mom and the kids hung around for a bit, and daddy quit just a little bit early. The girls were expected at a birthday party, and someone needed to look out for the younger guys. I am not sure who had the most fun,the boys or the girls at their party. We also had baseball practice scheduled for late Saturday afternoon;however, the weather had other ideas and a rainout was called. It allowed us the opportunity to share a dinner out and concluded a very fun but exhausting day.


My friend Connie tagged me yesterday...I loved the questions, but it has taken a little thought on my part...not to mention finding a moment to sit still.
So here goes:
8Things I Look Forward To:
-watching all of my children accept Jesus as their Lord and Savior(3 have accepted him and 3 to go)
-hearing "Good Morning,Mommy...I love you" from my chili peppers
-summer--when all our school is done and we can spend hours in the sun and water
-our summer vacation--we are planning a trip to the beach
-a camping trip coming soon in which we get to spend time with another adoptive family and fellow bloggy friends
-being a grandma(now mind you, I am not ready even in the near future,but someday I think it will be the coolest thing to be "grammy"
-reading about(and following journeys)children joining their forever families
-getting to meet Jesus,face to face
8 Things I Did Yesterday:
-helped the kids get breakfast,get dressed and had their teeth brushed
-took all the kids and met friends for Garrett's Birthday party ...playing paintball
-took the girls to a birthday party
-drove Brad's mustang
-took the kids out to dinner
-read a few of my friends blogs
-did some laundry
-spent a little quiet time with the Lord and prayed
8 Things I wish I could do:
-sing well (be musically talented)
-swim with dolphins
-go on a second honeymoon with my hubby
- go on a short term mission trip
-share Jesus with those who don't know him
-be more patient with my kiddos
-convince more people to adopt children and help them understand its many blessings
-spend more time playing with my kids and less time worrying about parenting,housecleaning,etc...
8 TV Shows I watch:
**most shows I watch are reruns that I watch late at night(I'm a night owl);although,I do on rare occassion catch a few daytime shows(when school isn't in session,of course!). **
-Jon and Kate plus8
-18 Kids and Counting
-Food Network Shows
-Everybody Loves Raymond
-Army Wives (in Season)
-Home Improvement
-Extreme Home Makeover
8 People I Tag:
(Not 8 but a few friends...)
Kim L at
Wendy at
Jill at

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Garrett!!

Big Blue EYES!!(age 2)A Little Catcher in the making...(age3) Loving his baby brother...(age3)
"We'll be right back on G-baby Live...BAM! BAM! BAM!"...future chef
All Smiles...only days away from age 10

Garrett is 10 today! He has been excitedly waiting for this milestone in his life (mom,not so much). 10 means that he gets his "first-ever" pocket knife(he has so often reminded us in the last week). 10 means that he gets a "special" daddy day in which he and daddy share special guy things. 10 means that we are now the parents of two" double-digit"kiddos. 10 means our little boy is growing up much faster than we could ever want.
Garrett was born almost 2 months early, and in that pre-mature birth,God gave me an incredible peace. He allowed me a glimpse of the child he had created...a fighter! Garrett fought his way through all those obstacles at birth and has been a fighter ever since. He is very brave and very strong(physically,mentally, and spiritually). His dad and I continue to be humbled by this young man. He has always had a very giving spirit, and as he grows, we continue to see an amazing young person who loves people. He is outgoing, attentive, detail oriented, and so very compassionate.He would willingly give the shirt off of his back to anyone in need. He loves Jesus, his Lord and Savior, with all his heart, and he spends everyday striving to serve Him. We love his passionate nature and his zeal to make things right for everyone. Wow, ...and we get to call him our son!
Thank You, God, for this very beautiful gift, one of your children. We pray that we can continue to parent this child in a way that glorifies you. We pray that his life will be pleasing in your sight, and that he will always choose to serve you.
Happy Birthday, our beautiful baby boy!(Ok, so it's my blog and as momma I get to call him beautiful and he will always be my baby)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Come on and Celebrate...

Meet "Stripey" and "Olivia"Kindred Spirits...both girls are best friends and are soooo much alike...Birthday celebration...Happy B-day Garrett(April 15th),Ryan(April),Mandy and Levi (May)Two Cuties... The Race is on...The Crew... our 6 and my sister&hubby's 3They were tired of pictures...but aren't they cute...Aunt M...getting sweet,sweet hugs.Waiting for the Church Egg Hunt...
How many do you have,Mia?
Our princesses in their pretty dresses...
Our big boys...

Our Blessings...
Granpa and Granma with the kiddos...
Celebrate the Ressurection of our Lord!
Our celebration began on Thursday, and we kept celebrating through today,Easter Monday. We doubled up our school lessons and finished early last week and just in time for our family to arrive. We were blessed by a visit from my sister,her hubby, and my nieces and nephew. They stayed through Saturday at lunchtime, and we packed the days full of fun. Since Mandy's birthday is coming soon, I took she and Natalie(her cousin) to build a matching animal at our favorite bear place(Mandy chose to do this in lieu of a big birthday party...she will have a sleepover with a few girl friends around her birthday in May.). We started our girl's day(Mia and Meg came along too) with a fun lunch of appetizers at TGIFridays. Then it was off to build our animals. Mandy and Natalie got matching tigers. Mia got a outfit for her bear at home,and Meg didn't want to make anything (She has outgrown bears). We returned home in time to eat supper and celebrate all our family's April/ May birthdays. Saturday morning brought a quick breakfast, and then an Easter Egg Hunt with all the cousins. We were sad when my sister and family had to leave to get back for their church on Sunday. We miss having them live close by. Saturday afternoon, we had a great time going to a theatre production of "Fa Mulan". It was a production done by young people for young people. All the kids seemed to have a good time,even the boys who went reluctantly. It was nice to get to see a few friends,too! We then made a trip to OK to spend the night and Ressurection Sunday with Brad's parents. It was a semi-last minute decision;however, we at least planned enough in advance to get packed before the "play", and left immediately after the show. We arrived late at Brad's parents, went to bed shortly thereafter, got up early, got everyone dressed , and made it to church on time. We enjoyed the service and were reminded of the hope we have because of this day and the hope we have in our Lord Jesus. After the service, grandma had an egg hunt set up for the kids at the church(our kids brought the grand total to 8...not a lot of young people). They enjoyed the hunt none the less and got a bounty of candy,toys and prize eggs. We then ate a ton of good food that Grandma had fixed for Easter dinner including her famous "bunny"cake...yum,yum. We spent a couple more hours visiting(actually some of us took short naps, and daddy helped grandpa with a computer issue). Then it was time to head home... we had to make a stop in Tulsa for dinner...can you guess where? (of course, daddy had to make a stop at Whataburger). It was a crazy busy weekend, but we had such a great time. The kids were so exhausted that we slept in really late this morning, and I let them just relax today. It's back to school tomorrow and once again a busy week. We are so blessed!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Three Years...

Oh my...How we Love,Love,Love this precious little girl!! We stand in awe of God and the amazing plan he had for our family three years ago,today. We are so thankful that His plan was so much bigger than ours, and that he placed Mia into our family. He has blessed our lives with this beautiful child.
Happy Forever Family Day...sweet princess!!!



One of mom's favorite pictures(2008)