My mother has been bothering me for years to write a blog. Every year I have the same answer… “What would I have to say that people would want to read?” I tell her when I have an answer for that question, I will write a blog. I seriously don’t know how people have time to write them. I don’t even have time to take a shower. Literally. It’s a problem. I don’t know how all these women out there write blogs. Not only are they writing blogs, they are writing blogs about all the crafts and food they make. How are they finding time for that? And most of them have more than one child. I only have one, and I need a shower, badly.
Now, I have something to write about. It’s been a long time coming and I stay up at nights thinking about it. I have been waiting for the perfect time, and I realized, there is no perfect time. I have to stop wasting time and do it …now. Four years ago, I went to Africa. Four years ago I made promises to people there that I would not forget them, that I would tell their stories. Four years ago. What have I done in four years?
My mom thought of the title “Before and Africa” and I actually love it. There are a lot of things my mom and I agree on, but usually when she has an idea “for” me, I politely turn her down. But this title struck a chord in me. I thought about all the blogs out there about style and fashion and craftiness and I thought about how my blog would probably be the antithesis of that. Maybe I do always buy the same long sleeved shirts at the GAP every three years when the old ones get holes in them. Maybe I do still have the same tennis shoes I bought for 30 bucks 6 years ago. Maybe I do only get my hair cut once a year. Maybe I am in desperate need of a style makeover, but I think this blog is more of a before and after of my soul. My soul before and now my soul (after) Africa…
So thanks mom, for the title and for recognizing there has been a change in me and that even though I have a hard time finding the words, it’s time to start trying.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Thank you notes



It’s been a rough week.  I am grateful to be starting a new one.  Last week was filled with uncertainty and exhaustion.  This week is filled with gratefulness and awe.   Just a few weeks ago my mom called and said the lump was cancerous, and in an instant, life was different for her…for all of us.   Her attitude throughout this whole situation has been nothing less than inspiring.  I am in awe of her grace and peace in the midst of something that could break her.  After the mastectomy and the doctor finding more in her lymph nodes, she has been steady in her stance that this has humbled her and made her rely completely on the One who gave her life in the first place.  My mom is the one I go to for just about everything.  It’s rare I go a day without talking to her on the phone.  She is quick to give advice (even when I am not asking for any) because she wants what is best for us.  She just wants her kids to trust in the Lord and live a life that points back to Him.  I hope to be that kind of mom.  She has been our biggest cheerleader in the adoption process, and I can’t wait to watch her with our new addition. 

We had our big garage sale this weekend and it was a LOT of work.  Trying to haul out all the crap before max woke up in the wee hours of the morning, sitting for hours on the three muggiest days of the summer, finding babysitters, and helpers and tables…but...it was all worth it, because it gets us one step closer to bringing our baby home.  I am realizing that God is orchestrating all of this.  Our garage sale raised exactly the amount we needed to pay for our home study.  I am truly amazed by that.


 Although God is orchestrating this, he has blessed us with a lot of help…so I am starting a list of Thank You notes:
Thank you…
…Mom for reminding me of what’s important and Who we are living for
…Pam for answering my questions and easing my mind about breast cancer AND for running around with a two year old while we sold all our junk!
…Dave and Allison for donating great stuff and helping with sale
…to my amazing God sent neighbors for donating and sitting with us and helping us haul everything back in at the end of each day
…Dad for taking care of my mom, in a way that brings tears to my eyes
…To the rest of my family for being supportive and prayerful
…To our friends who have donated their hard earned money
…Dave and Lindsey for all your fundraising ideas and for having the BEST idea of all time (stay tuned folks)
...Tony, for running your butt off
....Indianapolis Day Camps leadership team for helping me sort through everything and providing some laughter!
…to the people I am forgetting right now but will thank in the future!


I truly believe we are all adopting this baby, and he or she is coming into the most supportive, loving, and beautiful family I could imagine…so thanks. We love you all.


If you still want to donate…we have a looonnng way to go!

To donate go to our adoption website :  


Or click on the paypal link on the sidebar