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

Monday, May 30, 2011

An Weekend in Pictures (Pt 2)

A Watermelon Eating Contest:
I think that it was too close to call a winner. The kids ate and ate until the whole watermelon was gone! It tasted so good and sweet, and it was a perfect way to welcome in the summer!

Weekend in Pictures (pt1)

Guess Who Came for a Visit?
Scott drove down from Chicago to help out several of his friends in Joplin that were affected by the tornado. It was a very short visit, but we loved seeing him again. We told him that he had to bring Rachel and Ned next time for a much longer visit.

Look out Rachel...all those girls loving on Scott
 Getting Ready for Church
5 "girlie" girls in our house

Pure Cuteness

 An Afternoon in the Park
Just a Swingin'
 A Frisbee game
Just look at his form...

Get ready over there...

smooth sailing...

Good throw K...

I'm waiting...

Good Stuff

Be still my heart... these kiddos are just filling my heart with love and it is overflowing! We have been having such a great time. I have to tell you that it is GREAT FUN to boggle the minds of people in our small town.
"Are these kids all yours?"... just for fun, we tell them "YES!... Isn't it the greatest?!" I love to see the heads turn, and some peoples eyes nearly bug out and necks break as they count and turn to stare. I have wanted to tell them that "Flies are going to get in" as they stare and their mouths gap open. Really, it is FUN!! (Wonder what they would think if the Duggars showed up in our town?)
 Although we haven't done anything extremely exciting, we have enjoyed just spending time with each other...playing games, eating watermelon, going to the park, watching movies, going out for ice cream and so much more...
I have to share some of the wonderful conversations that we have been having around here!
First, we have a  large dry erase calendar in our kitchen that helps to keep this momma organized. To help the K-clan keep track of when their momma comes home, we look at that calendar and count the number of "sleeps" until her return. Each day, as we get closer to the end of their stay with us, they can hardly wait. I know they are missing momma, daddy and their family. We have just so enjoyed their stay, that we hate to see our time end.  So, Ms Kim tells them that I will be so sad when they go back home and that I will miss them terribly. Here is a conversation that transpired between the littlest K , Brad and I before bed.
K: "Ms Kim, my momma will be home soon.";  Me: "Yes, K in several sleeps".; K: "I miss my momma".;  Me:"I know you do and it won't be long now";  Me: " Do you know, I am going to be sooo sad when you go home?", "I will miss you soooo much!"; K: "You can come home with me... you ask my momma, and she will adopt you and you can come live with us."; Me " She would?! I would love that!"; Brad: "But, I have to come too..."; K:" No not you... well maybe, you have to ask my daddy first."...
Oh, my heart... and you know, I know Ms Connie would "adopt" me(us) if I(we) needed a place to call home!
Then there was a conversation as we were getting ready for church on Sunday. We have a pre-teen girl (probably don't have to tell other moms this) that has a interesting take on fashion and that is never happy with clothes we buy her...never,EVER! We had brought her an "island" dress from our winter trip. She said she liked it. It has been hanging in the closet until warm weather. It was warm on Sunday and all the girls were wearing dresses. She took it out, tried it on, and hated it! Brad asked her why she wasn't wearing it. She said, "I liked it on the hanger, but on me it just doesn't look good." The 8 yr old K had been listening, and she responds, "Come on Mandy! We are Asians and Asians make everything look Good!"... You go girl!!
Aside from a little extra,cooking,cooking....laundry, laundry, laundry ... it hasn't been much different than having my six any time. The kids are getting along great. They play well together... they have squabbles like brothers and sisters, but all seem to work it out well. We have just been a big happy family. I really am going to miss them when they return home!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Which Popsicle should we try, Nolie?

Sharing some sunflower seeds

She has captured his heart...
I am having such a fun time watching my "manly" men become like putty in the hands of a few precious little girls that have come to our house. They have melted like butter... I tell ya! I think the girls are especially fond of the big brother... and, he truly is good with the little ones. I am so proud of the extra grace and love that all the kiddos have shown to one another. Outside of a few minor squabbles, they are all playing well with one another, and our kiddos are being sensitive to the "homesickness" and "missing momma" episodes that occur on occassion. It occured to me today how they are all getting along like siblings. 10 kids...guess I have gone CRAZY!
P.S. All the other boys have been doting on the "princesses". Each time I think there might be a photo op, the chance is up before I can get the camera out. Hopefully, I can capture other times and share them with you.

Team Ten in Action

** A Little Background Info: We have the privelege of helping some friends of ours who are in China receiving two more treasures. We are watching their 4 youngest children for two weeks. Sooo... In our house at the present we have 10 children: 14yrs, 12 yrs, 11 yrs, 9yrs, 8yrs, 7yrs, 6yrs, 5 yrs, 4yrs, and 3yrs of age. We are having a blast and the kiddos are keeping us laughing.

In addition to our days not being of a regular routine, we have been dealing with the aftermath of the tornado and the terrible storms that have been rolling through our area. The kids have been extremely well behaved considering the fact that they have been cooped up for the majority of the past 3 days. We did manage to find time to get out for brief amounts of time before the rain came again...and again...and again. We have flited from activity to activity, unable to stay focused for very long on one task. We have tried our best to find things of interest... the key here is to KEEP THEM BUSY.

Finally outside for some fun... Miss Mia's Pink Mustang was the "rage"

Two "girlie" Girls taking turns riding the princess bike

Playing with Sidewalk Chalk

...and of course we needed to have some bubble fun

Waiting our turn for some popsicles

Looks like Double Trouble to me... really, they have become best buddies

The rain came, and we headed indoors to paint...

This "K" princess was painting a picture for her mommy...

We braved the weather one morning and went to play at the park... we got sprinkled with a mist of rain.

What do big boys do when they are bored at the kiddie park?... climb it, of course!

I'll race you to the top!

... and the Race is on...

Watch out they come!

Which is faster...a Mustang, a bicycle or a runner?

Her Dream Car at 16...?
Raining again... and we are snuggled in jammies and watching a movie

Raining AGAIN... and playing Chutes and Ladders
We can fit 10 at this table, hummm...

Do you think we have enough shoes?

 Mommy, We Love You and Miss You...
K#4...8yrs old
K#5... 5yrs old
K#6...4yrs old
K#7...3 yrs old
So, we have some "big" plans for some outdoor activities over the next week and a half. We are praying that all the rain will finally move on outta here... (the weather forcast is for more rain through the weekend, ugh)! Sing a little song with me... you all know it from childhood..."Rain, Rain, Go Away! We want to go out to play".  We have played with playdough, played with the "zillions" of toys downstairs, painted, played games, read stories, and are making cookies. We will break out the crafts, and we certainly welcome other rainy day ideas to keep little ones busy.

Monday, May 23, 2011

A Day in the House with Ten

Here is just a glimpse of  our first day with ten in the house:
Get up, find 8 pairs of clothing (the 2 oldest can do that for themselves)
(10 min. later) Snack Time
(10 min. later) Snack time
A short Happy Nappy (did I say short)
Play a game
(10 min later) Snack
A Movie ( only 4 stayed put watching it)
Change into Pj's and then milk all around
(They wanted a snack but I had to draw the line somewhere)
Everyone is in bed,finally, after 4 or 5 things to keep them up
*Big Sigh*.... I am going to bed.
It really was a good day. The kids did great...only a few minor squabbles and a couple of times that we had to have cuddle and rock time ( the best part in my opinion). We could use some dry, sunny days though... looks like another rocky and stormy day tomorrow. Please be in prayer for the people and town of Joplin, MO. Several friends were affected by the tornado; however, everyone we know is safe.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Oops... Happy Birthday Mandy (a little late)

It has been brought to my attention that I didn't write Mandy's birthday post. I can only attribute that fact to an extremely busy week...that, and I have a very forgetful brain.    
 Our Mandy girl turned eleven this year. It is a bit harder to accept the fact that she is getting older...We missed so much of her early years (she joined our family at 7). There isn't a day that goes by that we don't wish for a few of those years back, and there isn't a day that she doesn't wish to be "older" than she really is.
Those "pre-teen" years are upon us,sigh!  Mandy is a beautiful girl. She is strong and courageous and approaches most things in life with strength and confidence. She continues to grow in her adjustments to family. She is learning to trust and to allow mom and dad to be "in charge"...this isn't always easy (think Pre-teen girl).
She loves to read, loves arts and crafts, and she loves to DANCE. She has a natural ability for ballet and she is one gorgeous ballerina! She is doing well in school. Her most challenging subject is Math, and her favorite subjects are Reading and History. She has a innate presence with little ones... She is a "toddler" magnet!  I love to watch the little kiddos around her. She has a following of 2-3 year olds at our church who run up to her for hugs every Sunday and Wednesday night. It is fun to watch...almost any 2-3 year old that we encounter, is drawn to her. She loves them! She and I talk often of her desire to be a teacher, and I think she should think about preschool. She thinks that she may teach preschool dance class.
Happy Birthday to our Mandy girl!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Happy Birthday Levi!

Levi  is growing his hair out ( a little) and it is wild and crazy but oh, so cute on him.
Today my little boy turns seven years old. He is a precious gift from our amazing God! God knew his story and how he would come to be a part of our family long before we could even begin to guess. We are so blessed and thankful for this special little boy. He is a treasure!  He has made great progress in giving and receiving love. When he chooses to share his love, he gives it and loves intensely. He gives the best hugs and has a smile that melts hearts. He laughs lots, plays hard and sleeps only when he has to.  He desires to be a helper, and he is so proud when momma allows him to assist her. He thrives on praise and trys extra hard just to hear praise and encouragement. He has matured so much this year that we are astonished! He continues to make great progress in school. He is beginning to read simple sentences, has started drawing and writing sentences, and loves math and science. Levi is our natural athlete. He loves to keep up with his big brothers, wrestling and playing anything their creative minds decide on. Baseball is HIS GAME (you know his daddy loves this!), and he is at his happiest when playing tball. We are deep into the games this year, but he can hardly wait for next year when he gets to play machine pitch. It makes us laugh to see his enthusiasm and joy over this game! What a precious "baby" boy we have been gifted! I tell him often that he will always be my "baby" boy no matter how big he gets... that sends signals to his heart and a smile to his face that lights up the room. We love you, our Precious Treasure! Happy Birthday, Levi!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

The Winner Is...

We used a very professional method of choosing the winner...NOT. The entries were all placed in a bucket and a winning ticket was drawn. The winner is Bobbie S.... a local citizen, who has some very happy kiddos!
Thank You for participating in our drawing. Unfortunately, it wasn't very successful at raising funds, but we did manage to recover the cost, and it was fun!

Please remember our Wild Olive Tee Fundraiser! It continues until May 20th. You must use our family code SMITH0422 in order for us to receive credit for the tees sold. They truly are wonderful tees...soft, comfy and wear extremely well. The Ladies at WOT expanded the styles of tees available for adoption fundraisers. So, there are many selections to choose. We appreciate your helping us to bring our baby boy home.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Last Chance

It's Not too Late! You can win an XBOX 360 Kinect! Enter the drawing today! We will be selecting the winner tomorrow at 10pm. If you wish to participate, get details here.  If you'd like to read more about our adoption or donate to help us bring Toby home, please go to our website here.