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A Beautiful Weekend~

Sunday, February 26, 2017

We pretty much spent the whole weekend outside in 70+ weather~
 We cleaned out the sandbox and added new sand, enjoyed a picnic, and filled the pine isles with pine straw.
We also rehung our horse swing and Calla loved it!!!
A Beautiful Weekend!!!

Ben Curtis Goes Home~

Saturday, February 25, 2017

We met Josh halfway to drop off BC so he could go home to his little brother~
I told Savannah I felt like I was dropping her off at college again.


Could hardly let him go but he does need to be with his own family. :)

Marshall Lee Dove~

Friday, February 24, 2017

Not sure how Savannah's pregnancy flew by so quickly,
but Monday she went to the doctor for checkup and they sent her straight to the hospital~.
We jumped in our car and hurried to spend the night with BC~
 Josh left for the hospital while we got dinner ready then everyone to bed.
About 7:30 he texted me I had better head to the hospital and it's a good thing I did
because baby Marshall Lee Dove was born at 8:40pm.

I was grateful to be with Josh and Savannah as he was born... what a miracle!!!
Labor and delivery was extremely fast and Marshall arrived safe and sound~

He was immediately placed skin to skin with Savannah
and after an hour or so, taken to the newborn bed for weight (7lbs,13oz) and height (21in)~
 Josh and I followed him wherever they took him, and I took tons and tons of photos~
 He had the most wonderful cry and sounded just like Ben Curtis~
 Looks just like him too~
 I was SO happy they allowed ShayShay to hold him too~
 The next morning we were glad to see Amelia~
 Their first family photo and Rosie brought EK and SJ to visit~
 We ended up bringing BC home with us for the night~
 Then back out to welcome his baby brother home~
 Sweet Marshall... SO glad to be home~
 We brought BC home with us again for the rest of the week and he fits right in~
 Even during school~
 Savannah has kept us in photos and I can barely stand the sweetness~
 We LOVE having BC here with us~
And imagine the day when they are both here hanging with the crew!!!
Welcome to the family Marshall Lee Dove!
You are SO loved!!!

9 Months Home~

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Today Calla has been in our arms and forever chosen for 9 months.

She has come SO far, it is hard to imagine just how much.
So many changes.


Emotionally she has gone from:

Terrified of everything (especially our dog) to sprawling out on top of her.
Crying long hours at night to lying down with a kiss and falling asleep on her own.


Physically:

Sick with undetermined fevers to no fever at all.
Rotten teeth and cavity in every single tooth to a mouth of healthy teeth.
Questionable heart concerns to once a year visits like her siblings.


Intellectually:

Speaking Chinese and no communication at all with us (Extremely frustrating for her) to speaking 4-5 word sentences.
Communicating her needs and wants amazingly well.
Knows SO many vocabulary words, counts, knows some letters, can spell her name, and sings songs non stop.


Developmentally:

Came with a hyper fear of falling so didn’t want her feet hovering above the ground (hated the swing and riding toys) and now she LOVES the swing and peddles her own trike.
She also loves steering the Barbie jeep and riding around our yard.
She runs, jumps on the trampoline, and follows her sibs everywhere they go.


Spiritually:

I’ll let these little videos speak for me…

What brings a child so far?


Unconditional Love:
No child ever gets to choose the family they are born into.
They don’t get to choose whether to stay in the family… or be abandoned.
They also don’t get to choose adoption.
All that is decided for them.
A child should be given all the Unconditional Love they NEED in healing from the brokenness.

Sometimes what they need is opposite of what we want to give them…

Thrashing on the floor in a fit. They NEED us to pick them up and hold securely.
Spitting, slapping, and yelling. They NEED a smile, an affirmation, a Mama Loves You!
Crying for hours at night and no sleep. They NEED someone to sit with them, lie with them, or rock them.
Refusing to walk or begging to be held. They NEED to be held more than they walk even if they are ‘too old’ to be held.
Requiring the same monotonous routine day in and day out. They NEED their world to be predictable and secure. Cocoon PLEASE!


And she still has far to go.

In my experience until a child has been home as long as not, they don’t fully grasp the depth of family.

In the months and years to come, we will continue to:

Tell her story over and over to her.
Support all the struggles and offer distractions.
Continue building bonds and security.
Meet her in the hard and usher her into the beautiful.

Most of all we will continue leading her spiritually.

Jesus is her healer, not us.

Prayer is where her future lies, and we promise to love her straight to His feet.


Every Single Day!

President's Day~

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Our day began with our Breakfast Club making their own choice.
SJ made eggs for everyone, and Payne made toast.
The bitties wanted mac and cheese.  :0
I love giving them free breakfast days... see the joy?~

It was purely by luck a couple of the kids had picked up random books at the library that corresponded to President's Day~
 We sang our presidents song, read books, and watched documentaries about the pets of Presidents... you know my animal loving kids!

And just wanted to document Calla's writing~
I'm pretty sure she is going to be a lefty!

How To Train Your Dragon: Brave Writer Lifestyle~

Monday, February 20, 2017

There are times in schooling at home things have to CHANGE!

And sometimes the change has to be with ME!

I confess...

I have been hanging onto workbooks with all my might because they gave me tangible evidence of school.

The kids dreaded it but I was relentless.

Then I picked up THIS book again~ The Writer's Jungle:
 I am taking a section at a time. You can see I've already read and made notes.
This time I am reading my notes and making big post its and doing one thing at a time.

This week we started the Arrow Guide for How To Train Your Dragon~
I picked this title mainly to pull the boys in. EK and SJ have seen the movie so they were on board too.
The little girls are enjoying it as we listen via Audible.

I love the arrow guides give guidelines for reading the story, grammar ideas, literary element, and copywork.

We are also pulling great picture books to read as well.

It has been a very fun way to do all the things we were doing in workbooks but now with a genuine love of story and worth!!!

Calla's Prayers~



Scott's Building Progress~

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Scott has been renovating a lake house and here is the progress thus far~
What a transformation!!!!!

Patches~

When Evie and Calla went for their eye appts, the dr recommended patching~
SJ is our patch maker expert so she whipped up these adorable patches for them.
LOVE this photo so much!!!

CallaAnne Photos~

Friday, February 17, 2017

Most of the time when I ask Calla if I may take her picture she says no~
But today she crossed those arms in a pose and let me shoot. 
Adorable!!!!!

Friday Free Write Frenzy

Today everyone grabbed their journals and I set the timer for 5 minutes~ 


They wrote the whole time and read to us when we finished~
EK wrote way past 5 and everyone added an illustration. 
I love Brave Writer's mantra of less is more!!!
Everyone left the table believing they were writers. 
Score!!! 

Happy Valentine's Day~

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

It was a very sweet Valentine's Day for our crew~
 I got flowers and the kids opened lots of cards~
 We also made cupcakes and delivered to some of our favorite Valentines~
 AND look at my beautiful new cookware!!!~
Scott and the big girls gave me two of them for my birthday,
and I got the medium one for V's Day!
Perfect color too, right!?!?!
And LOVE my Valentine man!!!!!~
A Happy Valentine's Day!!!

New Glasses~

Monday, February 13, 2017

Evie and Calla were SO excited to get their new glasses~


Cutest little glasses girl ever!!!

A New Biker~

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Holly has been home 3 years and just today started peddling her bike~
Good job sweet girl... we are all SO proud of you!
Especially Evie!!!

Haircuts~

Friday, February 10, 2017

The girls only get haircuts about once a year so when we go, it's a big deal~
 This was a really big deal because it was Calla's first time, and she was SO brave!
Evie and Holly encouraged her so well~
 They never wear their hair down so had to get a photo while I could~
Checking that off the big list!!!

A Happy Birthday~

Friday, February 3, 2017

I'll never forget the day I saw this little face online in a sea of other little faces waiting to chosen~
I asked God to give me a sign in order to convince Scott she was our baby...
Feb. 3~ that was my sign... we share our birthday!

Scotty left me a sweet birthday card, and we wrapped Evie's gifts~

Evie wanted birthday photos so here they are~





 Can you see the personality plus?

Memommy gave Evie money, and she asked for a new bike so we took her to Walmart~
 Where she chose legos and rode her new bike right out of the store!

That night we had our family over for pizza~
 Gifts~
 and Cake~
It was a very fun birthday for both of us!!!