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It’s been ages since I’ve been able to post anything and I miss all of you!  Let me begin by saying the Empowered to Connect Conference in Denver was fantastic.  I met many wonderful people and truly enjoyed speaking.  I’m getting more comfortable being up in front of hundreds of people and risking that I just might say something ridiculous, start sobbing, or trip and fall.  So far I haven’t done any of those things, with the exception of getting choked up a couple of times.  I remind myself that I am there simply to serve and give glory to God – nothing else really matters.

I saw many old friends and made some new ones that I hope to stay in touch with.  Friday night I had dinner with two friends and we talked for the longest time, telling stories of our lives.  I ended up sharing much of my Tell it Well story and we all cried a  bit at the restaurant table.  I hugged lots of friends, laughed hard, and soaked up some great teaching from my friends the Monroes, Dr. Purvis, Dan and Terri Coley, and Debbie Jones.  It was great being with all of the folks from Show Hope who make the conferences possible.

Getting to Denver was a bit of a process, as you can imagine. First of all, in some strange lapse of all common sense and intelligence, I clicked on a link in an email last Tuesday and my computer immediately started blinking and giving me messages that I had a virus.  I called Russ in a panic and he told me to turn it off.  Then I just sat and looked at it and wondered what I would do if it were permanently ruined.  We have a family computer, but it is shared by so many people that I rarely use it.  The lack of a computer is a big problem for a blogger and writer, not to mention a mother who organizes her family’s life by tapping on those keys.

The next two days, after I killed my computer, were filled with preparations for my trip to Denver, including a day spent designing Isaiah’s graduation announcements.  He really did all of the work, but I sat by his side and gave him all kinds of excellent advice.  Truthfully, we’ve worked on many projects together, and this was a special one to accomplish.  I’ll share it with all of you soon.  We also designed an invitation for a graduation party for Sweet Pea and Isaiah with a very fun photo on it. 

Following the conference, I spent Sunday visiting my dear friend from many, many years ago when we both lived in Ithaca, NY.  She and her family live in Denver now and welcomed me to their home.  Emily always blesses me and makes me think deeply.  Mark and Emily are the friends who introduced us to international adoption.  They also met Dimples at her orphanage way back in the days when we were just her sponsors.  Emily is also a nurse practitioner specializing in caring for HIV+ children, which is part of our lives, so I’m always thankful to learn from her. Not to mention, Mark is a great cook and her kids are lots of fun.

I’ll be home early this afternoon and will leap into the week – or at least make a good attempt.  Honeybee and I have a trip to New York coming up very soon that I’ll tell you all about.  There is so much going on in the next few weeks and I’m taking slow, deep breaths as I type!!

#871 – 880 giving thanks

the many parents who came to learn more about parenting their adopted and foster children

Show Hope – who makes it all possible

Dr. Purvis, Michael and Amy Monroe, Dan and Terri Coley, Debbie Jones

Russ, who made it possible for me to be away

Sweet Pea who took care of many details

sunshine and spring flowers in Denver

Mark and Em

a run around the neighborhood with a fun 10-year old

dark chocolate with blueberries

airplanes – even if I don’t like flying

Have a great Monday, friends.


  1. Amy (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    Lisa, love your blog as always. Slight typo in last paragraph–switch to her blog name! I know this must be so hard to keep track of but you are amazing

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      Thank you, Amy, I didn't even notice! I'm always in a dilemma about using nicknames since I use real names when I speak – it just feels silly to refer to my kids as Honeybee and Ladybug when I'm speaking in front of a crowd. We'll see what the future holds.

      • Kim (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

        I'm always catching myself doing that! It is hard!

  2. The Johnson's (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    Thank you again for your blog Lisa – a click to a click that lead us to the conference this weekend and so many "aha" moments. It was great getting to hear so many great and inspiring stories like yours and Debbie's – to briefly meet you in person – to leave with HOPE! I can never thank you enough – because I found it thru finding your blog….. thank you thank you thank you!

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      God is good – and it is amazing the way He meets our needs. I am so very glad you made it to the conference and went away with hope; that is just what we want. Blessings to you and your family.

  3. Susan (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    I was at the conference in Denver–you did GREAT! You are SUCH an inspiration!!

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      Susan, thank you so much – that means a lot to me.

  4. Laurel (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    So glad your weekend was BLESSED!

    :) :) :)

  5. thejessicarudder (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    If you computer runs Windows, you have the option to revert back to a previous (hopefully non-infected) disk state.

    It's generally under Control Panel / Action Center and is labeled "Restore your computer to an earlier time".

    It will undo any system changes (so new program installs, changes to your boot up files, etc) but will leave documents, photos, music, etc unchanged.

    I came down with a virus on my PC at the beginning of March, restored to end of Feb and have not had any issues since.

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      Thank you, Jessica! I hope that works; we'll try it tonight.

  6. Janee (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    Lisa, it was so nice to finally meet you face to face at the conference. I really enjoyed hearing your adoption story in person. I'm filled with new hope for my little one. Hope you have a wonderful week!

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      Janee, it was a joy for me to meet you as well. We've "known" each other for a long time!

  7. Megan H (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    Was so encouraged by the ETC conference this last weekend. Thank you for sharing your beautiful family and your experiences with us all. Wishing you a safe return home, enjoy the week with your family.

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      Thank you, Megan. I made if home and have gotten lots of hugs and kisses.

  8. Lisa S. (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012


    I also thought your talk was wonderful. If it makes you feel better, my husband and I were choked up right alongside you.
    And I'm so glad I finally got to meet and speak with you.
    Thank you for taking the time to pass on all your experience and wisdom. I can't tell you how many times your words have encouraged me through a challenging time. So thank you.

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      Lisa, I'm so glad we finally met and I hope our girls can connect. Thanks for extending grace to me; these are deep matters of the heart and it is hard to speak without tears sometimes.

  9. bags15 (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

    where in new york will you be? i am in rochester, just wondering if you will be anywhere close to there?

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 23, 2012

      We are going to be on Long Island. It's going to be a quick, but fun trip, and very special for Beza. She is going to be speaking with me and is very nervous, but this will be a friendly audience. They are going to love her.