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I seem to have lost my ability to sit at the computer and have words fill the screen.  I honestly feel somewhat speechless. This is likely due to the ongoing challenge of not sharing more than would be wise, but there is something more.  My heart and mind are a little heavy and slow.

Russ and I saw Dimples yesterday and met with her therapist.  A plan was made for me to pick Dimples up on Monday; she’ll spend New Year’s Eve with Aunt Michele, which she is going to love.  On Wednesday we’ll head to Seattle with Bee and Dimples for appointments at Seattle Childrens on Thursday and Friday. Beyond that – we just don’t know.

This year we pooled Christmas gift money from both sets of grandparents and went on a family adventure.  We drove north  to Coeur d’Alene, had dinner at Red Robin, walked through the Christmas light display on the boat docks at the Coeur d’Alene resort, and then went to our hotel to swim.  In the morning we had breakfast and swam again before heading home.  It was a wonderful gift that we all enjoyed and an opportunity to  make special memories.  Dimples was sadly absent, as were Hannah, Mimi, and Andrew; we were a smaller group than usual.  Despite that, we had laughter, good conversation, and time to focus on having fun.  The day before we left I wanted to cancel, and Russ reminded me that it is important to continue living and loving our kids in the midst of hard days.

Today is Sunshine’s 10th birthday.  We’re thankful for another reason to celebrate and gather together.  Croissants for breakfast, Chicken stir-fry and egg rolls for dinner, and a cake that has not yet been baked.  Perhaps we’ll eat it warm from the oven.

Today is also my oldest son’s birthday.  Yes, my oldest and youngest children by birth were born on the same day – 24 years apart.  That is a story all by itself.

Thank you for your kind words and your prayers – please don’t stop praying – the Lord is answering.  He continues to open doors before us and we are walking through.

To everyone who has sent an email or message – thank you.  I read them all and cherish your words, even if I can’t respond.

Have a wonderful Sunday, friends.



  1. rebekah (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    I've been thinking about you and Dimples and your other kids as we struggle through our holiday. As we are in the midst of challenges too, I can only imagine how it is for you. I am still blindsided by how trauma infiltrates and affects all interactions in our family, big and small. Infinite capability to wreak havoc. My heart is overflowing with empathy and support for you and it's headed across the states to you all.

  2. Beth Ross Houston (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Love this picture! So glad you all went and made happy memories!! Still praying and believing that God will light the path He wants you to take. We serve such an awesome God!

  3. Paula Miles Spears (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Praying for you all everyday.

  4. Sadee (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Praying for you right now….thank you for sharing your journey. Praying for your precious son on his birthday, and Sunshine too.

  5. Deborah (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    I laughed at the not yet baked birthday cake comment and felt compelled to share this – check out the Pampered Chef rice cooker – amazing for making rice quickly in the micro – but also makes a fantastic warm lava cake in 10 minutes. (It should be called the "Big family mom's best friend"!)

  6. Courtney (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Praying for you so often!!

  7. Tressa (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012


  8. Laurel (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Thinking of you and praying for you as you walk this difficult journey. It is soooo…. important to pour yourself into the children that are at home, as they have given up so much Mama-Time due to Dimples' special needs. Do not feel guilty for ENJOYING yourselves . . . for enjoying the lack of trauma-based-behavior. Every one of you needs to catch your breath, laugh, and take time to relish the peace in the home. Not that life is now a peace of cake . . . as you do still have a houseful. :)

    Some friends of mine will be driving their Ethiopian son to a "Boy's Ranch" on Wednesday. Please pray for the S. Family as they walk this difficult journey, as well.

    Hugs & Prayers to you, my friend. I would LOVE to drive to Seattle to meet up with you sometime, if you ever have a spare hour or two for lunch or coffee. Just let me know.


  9. erika (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Praying for all of you. God is good all the time and all the time God is good.. Have a blessed new year..

    Matthew 18:19

  10. Katie Szotkiewicz Patel (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Love you sweet lady…..definitely praying continuously for you!

  11. Jennifer (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    You rarely hear of people struggling. I had my share of rage and anger with my oldest son from Ethiopia. It gets "a little" easier, but there are still constant what ifs circling in my brain. Luckily, his younger, and much happier half brother fills my days when he is awake. :-) I am so thankful for that.

  12. Sadee (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    It's late and I'm sleepy, but I just read this and thought of you…..praying for you & your family tonight!

  13. kristine (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Praying for you and everyone in your beautiful family.

  14. Leslie Raneri (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    I'm praying for you guys. Happy birthday, Sunshine! I love your cute haircut! Hugs, Lisa. :)

  15. daysofwonderandgrace (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012


    The circumstances are a little different here. But my heart is right there with you. The mercy of God is weighty sometimes. Praying. Carrie

  16. Carrie (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Sometimes in the midst of difficult situations, it is hard to put one foot in front of the other, at least for me. However, I am glad you could get away and enjoy some fun with the children. Your comment about having just "some" of your children with you and you felt like a smaller group made me chuckle because I only have 2 children.

    Anyhow, continued prayers for answers and a safe journey over here.

    I live 15 minutes from Children's Hospital, so if you need anything, please contact me. I would still love to help with the baby book for Honeybee. You can let me know when the timing is right :)

    Blessings on your days!

  17. Mary (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    Praying, knowing his love, mercy, grace and wisdom are all you need and He gives you each of those in endless supply. Healing, Hope, and Honor are yours this new year.

  18. Blessed (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012

    I did not post encouraging comments to your previous posts, simply because I was so moved at how many other people had already done so! I am so glad you have such an interested and supportive blog community, and pray that God puts all the right people in your real life community to help you best with Dimples and all your family needs.

    I love your heart, dear woman. I love your family, I love what you share, and in return for all the wisdom and joy you bring me through your blog, I will be praying for you all throughout this upcoming year.

    Much love from CA,


  19. Anna Barber (Reply) on Sunday 30, 2012


    I'm just catching up reading from your Dec. 20 post. My heart breaks for your family. I must say I'm touched by seeing that several moms commented how they would love to help you. If I were closer, I'd be offering, as well. I appreciate your wisdom in not over-sharing and wonder how many other families out there are reading and having their similar trauma-based struggles validated. I am certain the Lord is using your voice to minister to many others. Thank you for living your story so well. Love, Anna