Monday, April 30, 2012

Before and After: What 6 Months Can Do!!!

6 months ago today, we held our son for the very first time. It was love at first sight. We can't believe the transformation that we are blessed to witness as our baby boy rapidly grows and flourishes. On October 30th, he was 16 pounds and as frail as a newborn. Today he's a 26 pound tank, is scooting everywhere on his behind, stands (with assistance), sits up on his own, and is starting to get into everything he can!  He loves playing with his toys and will spend hours throwing things, flipping through books and filling his mind with everything around him. Just this week, he's learned "So Big" and to wave "goodbye/hello". When we ask him for a kiss, he now leans his head forward so we can plant a kiss on his forehead or cheeks. He kicks with excitement and laughs when he feels the wind in his face. He and his sister are playing together more and more, and it's wonderful to witness them showing genuine affection for each other. His next surgery to repair his hard palate is scheduled for early June. We are anxious to have this behind us so that he can begin eating solid foods without complications.  His lip will be closed at the end of summer, which will be bittersweet for his daddy and mommy, who love his beautiful smile just as it is. Izaiah brings joy and light into our lives every day in ways that we never could have imagined, and we praise our God for gifting him to us, as well as his wonderful, sweet and precious big sister. 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Do You Know Him?

Our Easter Lily


"Tea Anyone?"


Easter Pics


Happy Easter!!!

God Is The Resurrection-Gospel

by Tony Reinke

The whole point of Easter is that we get … blank.

How would you finish the sentence?

... we get justification.

… we get new life in Christ.

… we get the promise of imperishable physical bodies.

… we get the promise of eternal joy.

For all the right answers we could give, there's one even more fundamental purpose behind the holy week events, writes John Piper in his book God Is the Gospel: Meditations on God's Love as the Gift of Himself [(Crossway, 2005), 37, 147]:

Until the gospel events of Good Friday and Easter and the gospel promises of justification and eternal life lead you to behold and embrace God himself as your highest joy, you have not embraced the gospel of God. …

The best news of the Christian gospel is that the supremely glorious Creator of the universe has acted in Jesus Christ's death and resurrection to remove every obstacle between us and himself so that we may find everlasting joy in seeing and savoring his infinite beauty.

The saving love of God is his doing whatever must be done, at great cost to himself, and for the least deserving, so that he might enthrall them with what will make them supremely happy forever, namely, himself. Therefore, the gospel of God and the love of God are expressed finally and fully in God's gift of himself for our everlasting pleasure. "In your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore" (Psalm 16:11).

Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday

And how can I kneel here
And think of the Cross:
///The thorns and the whip
And the nails and the spear
The infinite cost
To purchase my pardon
And bear all my shame///
And think I have anything
Worth boasting in
Except for Your name
Because I am a sinner
And You are the Savior

And I want to make
Much of You Jesus
I want to make much of Your love
I want to live today
To give You the praise
That You alone are so worthy of
I want to make much of Your mercy
I want to make much of Your Cross
I give You my life
Take it and let it be used
To make much
Of You

"But far be it from me to boast, except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world"
-Galatians 6:14

Wednesday, April 4, 2012


Happy Birthday Lily Grace!!!!

Birthday "Cake Balls", Birthday dinner (Sushi Salad... YUM!!!) and Birthday Presents!!!!

Overdue Update!

Today is our daughter's 2nd birthday, though it is her first birthday with us.  Happy Birthday, Lily Grace.  We are very proud of you and love you so much!


We started our day like we most often do, saying a prayer to Jesus. But today it was a little more emotional.  We thanked Him for the day that Lily was born, for her sweet, beautiful spirit, for blessing daddy and mommy with the privilege to be her forever parents, and we asked Jesus to continue to stir into Lily's heart a deep desire, love and passion to know and serve Him.  These things we pray each day.


But then we also said a prayer for Lily's biological mother and father who live in China, that their hearts would be somehow comforted with the peace of Christ as they remember this day two years ago, and that somehow they would know that Lily was now with a family that loved and treasured her.  These words may seem sweet to read, but behind them lies a deeply emotional and very real story.  A story of sorrow and joy that touches many lives to the core.  A story that happens much too often throughout the world where sorrow is the main theme. 


We have now had our children, Lily and Izaiah, for five full months and already cannot believe how much they have grown physically and emotionally.  Here are some highlights:


  Lily is a busy and very active girl with the most expressive face!  Oh how we love to see all her expressions.

  She sleeps very well and during her naps, you will most often find her sleeping with her socks on her hands.  She is so funny!

  Although she cannot identify colors yet, she does know how to sort them and put all the reds together, the blues, yellows, etc.

  She has endless chatter but does have a limited vocabulary.  She walks around the house all day yelling, "Mama!"  She says, "Dada" too.  When you ask her if she wants to sing a song, she says, "Jesus" as we most often sing "Jesus Loves Me".  Other words she says:  juice, eye, teeth, two and poo.

  Speaking of "poo", yes, we have started the potty training process and she is doing very well!  She won't tell us when she has to go yet, but she will very often, several times a day anyway, go potty and poo on her little toilet when we put her there.  She loves getting an M-n-M afterward as her treat.

  Our girl is a reader!  She loves, loves, loves to read books.

  She mostly feeds herself and is getting much better at eating with a spoon.

  She loves to repeat animal sounds and is still working on this.  Her favorite are making sounds like a lion, snake, bumblebee, dog, cow and monkey.

  Although she hated getting in the bathtub when we first got her, she now loves her bath time and will even lay in the water on her tummy.  Still doesn't like to get her hair washed though.

  Mommy brushes Lily's teeth every morning and night but Lily always controls the toothbrush and finishes the job.  She loves brushing her teeth.

  She loves music and dancing.  She also loves to play with her lego blocks and is starting to build things.

  Lily is very helpful and even picks up her toys.  We can already tell that she is a meticulous girl, a child after Mommy's own heart!






These are things that he started doing at age 18 months:


  He gives "high-five".

  He now claps his hands and is so proud when he does.  This was really huge for him.

  He loves music and swaying back and forth.

  He loves bouncing and jumping--the bigger the movement, the better. 

  This baby was always very ticklish and full of laughter, but now we get the biggest kick out of watching him laugh just because.  He loves to laugh at his sister and Sami too.

  He eats very well and has gained 50% of his weight in the last 5 months.  He weights nearly 24 pounds today whereas 5 months ago, he weighed 16 pounds.  He mainly eats from a bottle, drinking formula mixed with baby cereal or pureed baby food, yogurt, applesauce etc.  This seems to be working very well for him.  He adjusted to syringe feeding for a period of 8 weeks during all of his surgeries in the months of January and February but we are now back to the bottle.  Izaiah loves being sang to when he is drinking his bottle. 

  Izaiah started eating some soft/pureed foods initially by Mommy swiping her finger in his mouth, but now he will even let us put a spoon in his mouth!  This, too, was a major step forward.  He is still very limited to what he can eat due to his cleft palate and food getting stuck up there.  We are scheduled to have his hard palate surgery next month!

  He loves being cuddled and kissed!  We will often kiss one side of his face and neck and then he will turn it so you can kiss the other, pressing his face hard against yours.

  He loves, loves, loves to play ball!  This is clearly his favorite thing to do as he gets excited every time you roll the ball to him.  His arms and feet get to kicking and we must say, we won't be surprised if he is some kind of ball player because he is good at this!

  We have four teeth!  His two front teeth are finally in.

  Izaiah is very focused on whatever he does.  He loves to play with toys and is getting more and more interactive.

  He started saying "mama" at 18 months and just recently now also started saying "gaga".  Every once in a while we will hear a "kkkk".  We believe these two new noises were enabled as a result of his soft palate surgery at the end of February.  It's exciting progress!


We'll try to keep this updated as often as we can, but as you may imagine our hands are very full, and time to sit and blog now has to be 'scheduled'!


Love to all.

Recent Pix