Tuesday, December 22, 2009

All I really want for Christmas

Every time I hear this song I have visions of all those beautiful children I met in Ethiopia. I pray this year many orphans will get their wish of a family. Now, after listing to this song again, I'm going to go sit in my son's room and praise God for bringing us together as a family this Christmas.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Merry Christmas

I can't believe my son has been home for fifteen weeks. I know all parents brag about their children so I am just asking everyone to please forgive me for this but, I think Adonu might be a genious. He turned 2 December 14th. Gladney said his birthday was accurate and I have so much faith in them. Tonight he sang the entire ABC song with me three times. He is saying up to five word sentences in English. He also sings almost all of twinkle twinkle and ba ba black sheep. He is so amazing. The credit goes to the awesome caregivers in the Gladney Foster Center. What amazing women. I am so glad they spent so much time with my son. I just know he will become someone great and make his family in Ethiopia proud.

Here is a copy of our Christmas letter we mailed with our card. Merry Christmas to all my friends!

Merry Christmas 2009

This has been an extraordinary year for our family as we traveled to Ethiopia to bring home our son, Adonu. We feel incredibly privileged to be blessed with the opportunity to raise this boy. He is an adventurous two year old that has completely fit right in with our family. The judge in Mauston couldn’t have said it better when he said, “Sometimes God just drops an angel in your laps.” Adonu is very happy and intelligent. He is picking up language so quickly and makes us laugh daily. We can not imagine our family without him.

Emma and Niah continue to enjoy home school, 4-H, swim club, piano lessons, and church activities. They love to help take care of their new little brother. Jason started school this year and loves it. He learned to ride a two wheel bike. He also braved his way through outpatient surgery for his trigger finger release. Jason is so proud to be a big brother!

As a family we did some camping this year, traveled to St. Louis two times, and went to Mayo Clinic for a medical conference. Brad had a near death experience after a bee sting this summer. We now know he is extremely allergic to Yellow Jackets. He will go through immunotherapy this winter. We wouldn’t want a little bee to slow him down during his biking, camping, running, hunting…….activities!

Our trip to Africa was the highlight of our year. The people of Ethiopia are wonderful and part of our hearts will always remain there. Traveling to a third world country was a life changing experience. We have learned how truly fortunate and wealthy Americans are. At the same time we realize that people around the world are similar in that they value God, family, and friends and can enjoy life without extravagance. Brad and I are praying about how we can continue to help people in need so that they can enjoy all Christ has given them. This experience has taught us to reflect on how much we have, the things that make us happy, and how we can serve others in need.

It is so easy to get wrapped up in ourselves and our own families during the Christmas season. Jesus Christ came to this earth to serve others. He gave his life for you and me so that we can go to heaven. This was a gift, he asked for nothing in return. “For by grace; are ye saved through faith (in Jesus Christ); and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:” Ephesians 2:8. We ask ourselves, whom have we served? Are we following Christ’s example? Our family prays you choose to accept God’s gift and follow Him this Christmas.

With Love,
Brad, Beth, Emma-9, Niah-7,
Jason-5, & Adonu-2