Anniversary for A Bushel and A Peck!

Yesterday marked the one year anniversary of A Bushel and A Peck at this new website,  www.OneThankfulMom.com.  I started with a small blogspot address on June 19, 2006 having absolutely no idea that I would still be writing today.  I figured that once our children had been home for a short time, I would have nothing more to say.

Apparently that is not the case and most days I think of numerous posts to write — if only I could find a few quiet moments.

Thank you so much for being part of my life through A Bushel and A Peck — I am honored that in the midst of your busy days, you take the time to read my humble offerings. Even if you don’t have time to read this post, would you please skip to the bottom and read the last bit? It would mean the world to me to hear from you.

In honor of this day, here is the first half of the year in review.  The second half will follow tomorrow.

January

2010 began, quite appropriately, with packing for another trip to Seattle.  I’m not sure how many trips we made last year, although I’m sure Russ could tell you exactly how many miles we’ve traveled and what our gas mileage was.

January brought us productive therapy appointments with our extraordinary adoption therapist, initial explorations in Sensory Processing Disorder for Eby, and finally some conclusive answers about Dimples’ tummy!  It only took an endoscopy to learn that she was severely lactose intolerant.

Honeybee traveled to Ethiopia to visit her grandmother and experienced an incredible range of emotions.

I learned a little trick that helped Eby control his vocal volume which continues to be useful, and another that helps a dysregulated child communicate.  I wrote about the importance of giving children work.

February

I kicked off the month with a moment of self-pity as I contemplated what my life might  have been if Russ and I had stuck with our very rational adoption plan.  Fortunately a good friend spoke truth to me and helped straighten me out.

I started reading Sensory Processing books and wrote about my first seven tasks for helping Eby. I delved deep into grief with Honeybee.

I shared another great tip learned from our adoption therapist that we still use regularly.

My Tuesday Topic on How Old is Too Old had a great response.

Honeybee began discovering ways to calm herself when she was feeling dysregulated.

March

The community here discussed a Tuesday Topic that has brought more people to my blog via Google search than any other: Tuesday’s Answers: Adopting More Than One Child at a Time.

I revisited Five Minute Cards and wrote a little more about Eby’s intense craving for Sensation.

I also wrote my most frequently viewed post of the year, Meditations on a Messy Life.

April

In April I wrote about the day I broke Eby’s heart, and The Marathon of Therapeutic Parenting.  We hosted 60 people for Easter and I gave away all of my secrets for how to host a crowd with minimal effort and maximum fun.

I wrote about why I blog.

I also talked about infusing hope in our childrenand in ourselves.

May

May began with the gift of attending the Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit which is where I heard John Piper preach the sermon on adoption  that was pivotal for Russ.

I wrote about meeting Honeybee for the first time, not knowing that one day she would be my daughter — but God did.

June

In June I bought Russ a cheap wedding band.

I also wrote what I consider to be one of my most important articles on how Russ was restored after being plunged into parenting children from “hard places.”

******

Originally I planned to review the entire year in one post, but this has gotten long enough!  I’ll continue the saga tomorrow.

Here comes the most important part of this entire post.

So many changes have come this year for me and for A Bushel and A Peck.  My blog has grown in ways I hadn’t anticipated — thank you so much for reading my humble thoughts and being part of my life.  This is an unexpected journey for me and I’m still finding my way as an accidental writer.

In honor of A Bushel and A Peck’s anniversary, I would love to hear from you!

Would you please (pretty please) leave a comment and tell me what you would most like to see me write about?  Do you like Tuesday Topics, My Learning Curve, hearing about my family, homeschooling or something else?

Do you have a question for me?  Send it my way and I’ll answer it here.  I am a fairly transparent person, so if you’ve always wondered something about our family, about me, or anything else, this is your chance!

Or just say hello!

Don’t be shy — you will bless me with your comment and your thoughts. I want this site to honor Jesus and to serve you.  If I am writing only to satisfy myself, I can do it with much less effort and frequency!

There is joy in the journey, and I’m so glad you are sharing it with me.

Blessings friends,

Lisa

This post may contain Amazon Affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.

132 Comments

  1. christine
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa, my name is Christine. I have never written a comment or let you know that your blog has a huge impact on my life. I am a homeschooling mom of three wonderful kids. Two were adopted from South Africa and one was born to us. I run a foundation called Emmanuel's WIsh Foundation that continues to work mainly in African countries.

    Please be encouraged that your blog is a blessing to me. Your Rocking challenge has become a huge part of my 6 year olds day as i pray over her and wait on the Lord to heal her heart, We are currently in the process of adopting again and look forward to our ever growing family.

    Thank you for sharing with me.

    Love, Christine

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Thank you Christine! I am so glad to hear that you are doing the Rockin' Mama Challenge! Just last night I was thinking about how wonderful it has been for Honeybee and me.

      Reply
  2. amy
    January 24, 2011

    Love you and what you do. Some ideas I'd love to hear from a mom of many – potty training tips, sleeping tips, growing children in God and learning about the usual child rearing "challenges" and what you've discovered after raising children.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Amy, I can do that — and I bet I can get some other experienced (read "older") moms to join in offering advice. The best part is that we won't all agree! I just hopped over to your blog – your little girl is something sweet!

      Reply
  3. Rachelle
    January 24, 2011

    Love your blog, have been following for a couple months now.

    We are in the process of adopting from our state's foster care system, so I eat up your posts.

    Yesterday we had our first home study visit; we have 4 bio children.

    Here's a question:

    the counselor/homestudy caseworker mentioned that she felt that my 3 younger children kind of consider themselves a "unit"; she thought they would be "sisterly"/"brotherly" toward an adoptive child, but not actually consider that child a part of the "unit" and that I needed to talk to them about that and help them to "open up". They are 13,12 &10. It's tough because we haven't decided for sure what gender/age of child we are seeking-but are leaning toward school-aged. Any suggestions?

    Reply
  4. lainetaz
    January 24, 2011

    Happy Anniversary from a reader in AZ. I'm not sure how I found your blog but I enjoy reading it. I love the insights you share and your positive attitude. We have adopted 7 kids. All but one from the foster care system. They all have some type of educational or emotional special need, some have both. It's hard parenting but we are all blessed. Looking forward to reading your posts this year.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Thank you! I bet you have learned so much in your experience of parenting your children – I hope you'll leave comments and share your thoughts with us.

      Reply
      1. lainetaz
        January 25, 2011

        Ah yes, I definitely have learned A LOT from parenting our kids. Probably way more than they have learned from me. 🙂

        Reply
  5. Christa
    January 24, 2011

    Your blog has been an inspiration and an encouragement to me for the past few years. My husband and I adopted our son Lucas Digafu from Ethiopia in 2009. I spent hours researching, prior to our travel, all the possible "unknowns" we might be faced with when we came home. It was refreshing to find a blog that did not cover everything up with a sugar coating. Your entries are real and I appreciate that so much. We were matched with a "healthy" 3 year old son who is the love of my life. However, the first year was a whirlwind of doctor's appointments and specialists. I won't go on about the details here, but just want to say thanks for your truthful topics. I don't blog much anymore, but you can see some pics of my family here if you'd like. http://loveforlucas.blogspot.com/
    Thanks again for this blog!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Christa, your family is beautiful! Thank you for sharing your blog. I'm constantly trying to find the balance between being authentic and helpful, while also not exposing my children more than I should. I'm glad my posts have been helpful and I'm glad you took the time to comment!

      Reply
  6. Kureen
    January 24, 2011

    I enjoy everything you write about especially things regarding adoption. I would love to hear more on your biological children's thoughts on adoption-the good and the the hard. Keep writing!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Kureen, thank you for the suggestion! I appreciate you leaving a comment.

      Reply
  7. lisa
    January 24, 2011

    first happy anniversary! i am so grateful to be on this journey with you, you inspire me to keep going and help me to not feel so alone and u make me see it is possible to live with a child from hard places and make it work in a joyful way(most days:)
    i would like to know all the things you are doing to make your kids feel safe and progress, what u looked for and found in a therapist and what you lean on (God and Russ, i know 🙂 when it has been a hard day or you are out of ideas. thank you lisa and congratualtions and a heart felt thank you for sharing your life with us, it touches me everyday. many blessings, lisa

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Lisa, I love all of your questions and look forward to answering them. I hope I get to know you more as you continue on your own challenging road.

      Reply
  8. frumadsen
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa! Just want to say THANK YOU for doing this blog!! It is truly inspiring, educating and encouraging. I only know one other adoptive family in my network and they live overseas. If it wasn't for adoption blogs (and especially yours) I would feel very much alone. But I don't.

    I love Tuesdays Topics – the way everybody chips in their two cents. I learn so much reading about your learning curve. And I find it very helpful when you share about a book you've read or a website you find resources in. I use your patenting tips. I love the variation in your posts and the beautiful pictures of your kids (who takes them btw?). I really appreciate your transparancy and your love for Christ. Please keep going!!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Hi Kirstine, I always enjoy hearing from you! Thank you for the suggestions — it is very helpful to know what people like to read. Rusty takes most of the best pictures and I take the rest 🙂 I used to be the family photographer, but he has surpassed me by far!

      Reply
  9. Jeannette
    January 24, 2011

    Hi,
    I'm a relatively new reader of your blog but love it. We have a 3 yr old boy born in Ethiopia who has been home for about 13 months now. I still feel like secure attachment is a long way away for us. Your honesty and tips, tricks and other reader comments are so useful and encouraging!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Jeannette, thank you for commenting. Hang in there, it can be a long journey for some of us, but the rewards are sweet. I'm glad to know you are here!

      Reply
  10. Sara
    January 24, 2011

    Thank you so much for writing so eloquently about so many of the challenges and emotions that are just beginning to surface in my newly expanded family. There are so many behaviors in my little three that trouble me at times, and there are so many many moments when I feel overwhelmed by these behaviors. When I come here and read what you've written I am both comforted by your transparent honesty and inspired with a new technique and a higher standard for dealing with the things that I am facing as a newly adoptive mama. Thank you!

    I have one practical question for you too. One of my little ones sometimes seeks smaller spaces when given a consequence (hiding under a blanket is what he usually does – we are making progress, though. While in his birth country, he would often topple furniture and crouch under behind sofas or beds in an attempt to find that small, controllable space). He will also stretch (with determinable force) or push against a hard object like a wall or a stair railing. At times I think gum-chewing or playing with playdoh would be a good outlet for him. He loves loves loves gum, and I do not love love love playdoh. 🙂 My question is, how do you keep your little ones from sticking their gum on furniture or in their hair. My little guy has had a good slathering of peanut butter a time or two, and I'm a little wary of giving him gum. Do you have rules about where and for how long they can chew their gum? I kinda wonder if constraining the time and space that I allow the gum-chewing might just add to his frustrations. Just some thoughts… Can you tell me more about how you carry out the gum-chewing as a physical outlet for your kiddos?

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Hi Sara, that is a great question! The kids can chew gum while we are rocking, at the kitchen counter, or outside. I have never liked gum, so it was tough for me to allow it in the house, but it has been a great tool for getting some stress and wiggles out. We also give them a piece of gum right at the beginning of the sermon at church and I find they are better able to sit still through the sermon as they chew. By the way, I only give them bubble gum that is large, in order to give them deep pressure in their jaw joints (more calming). I don't think small pieces of Trident would have the same impact. Does anybody have an opinion on that?

      Reply
      1. Sara
        January 24, 2011

        Thanks so much! I love that you offer them choices but still put some good parameters on where the gum chewing takes place!

        Reply
  11. Mama D's Dozen
    January 24, 2011

    I just love your blog … your family … your sweet spirit … your transparency.

    Thanks for being an encouragement … through your blog … through emails … through your prayers.

    Just keep writing … whatever the Lord puts on your heart.

    Hope your week is BLESSED!

    Laurel 🙂

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Thank you Laurel!

      Reply
  12. Lori
    January 24, 2011

    I feel so encouraged and blessed by your blog in my own healing journey from a painful childhood! Thank you for allowing the Lord to use you in this way. And I have to add that I also was touched by the entries about your husband's Restorative Sabbatical. It is enlightening for me because, as an adult who was abused by the primary male father figure in my life and also faced abuse before that by another man in my mom's life, I have tended to be drawn all my life to that "mother hunger" you talk about in one of your posts and distrusting the role of a kind, God fearing, God loving husband and father. I pray that your Russ is blessed as well along this journey. You two seem like AWESOME parents and any child is blessed to have you both! Lori

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Lori, thank you for your kind words. The Restorative Sabbatical had such a profound impact on our family. I need to condense those posts into a single article to make it more readily available; I just haven't gotten to it!

      Reply
  13. Mamitaj
    January 24, 2011

    Lisa,

    Everything you say is like apples of gold in settings of silver. Congratulations on your blogiversary! I also love your followers. It's a great community!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Mamita, you are far, far too kind. Thank you for being such a fabulous guest author for me. I hope we'll meet one day!

      Reply
  14. Lisa H
    January 24, 2011

    Hello, Lisa!

    I appreciate the blog as a way to have someone "share the journey" in adoption with me, in a way that those in my "real" life don't always get. I enjoy posts on mommying and managing a big family of many ages/stages, and talking about the deeper and harder aspects of adoption. God really DOES use your writing and I hope you are blessed in the process!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Lisa, you could write the posts on mommying and managing a big family — but thank you, I'm glad that even an experienced mom of a large family can glean something here. Thank you for saying hello and encouraging me!

      Reply
  15. Darcy
    January 24, 2011

    My husband and I are in the process of adopting two little boys from the foster care system. I have come back to your blog again and again for encouragement (for me!) and information on helping them have the best transition to our home as possible. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with the rest of us. I especially enjoy the Learning Curve posts.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Darcy, thank you for the feedback – I am so glad to know what people find helpful.

      Reply
  16. Anna
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa! I'll have to just say I love it all! I really like the Tuesday Topics but it's so fun to hear about your family, homeschooling, and I do enjoy the Learning Curve too. Thanks for willing to be so open with all of us! You and your blog are a blessing to me.
    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Anna, it is so sweet to see your comment. Like Heidi, I think of you every day when Dimples snuggles up with her polka dot blanket. I am certain it helps her. I know that I need to get a post up about how to make weighted blankets.

      Reply
  17. Sarah
    January 24, 2011

    I always enjoy reading your blog. I have three kids, two adopted from Ethiopia. I enjoy your Learning Curves the most. Your transparency is the most valuable part of your blog to me. There are few people who are brave enough to let others see what is real, and from that I'm sure you have helped many people feel like they are not alone. Keep up the great blog!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Sarah, I like writing My Learning Curve a lot too, so I'm glad you enjoy reading it. Thank you for letting me know.

      Reply
  18. Teresa
    January 24, 2011

    Lisa, I love your blog just the way it is and I always look forward to My Learning Curve. Continued blessings to you and yours always,
    Teresa

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Teresa, that is good to know, thank you!

      Reply
  19. Kathrin
    January 24, 2011

    Lisa, thank you so much for being there. I have learned so much already. Right now – it's past my bed time I can't think of anything more I would like to read about .
    All the best.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Kathrin, I always love hearing from you – thank you for leaving a comment!

      Reply
  20. Heather
    January 24, 2011

    Hi,
    I found you through Dorothy's B's blog when we were really struggling after the arrival of our 6th child from Korea 🙂 My husband is a pastor and we have 6 wonderful kids…3 from the great country of South Korea…2 of them have special needs. I enjoy reading about different therapies you have tried as we live in a rural area now and have little access to help. I also LOVE to know how you homeschool and feed a large family 🙂 Thanks so much! I appreciate moms who are willing to be transparent and help others. I used to blog a while ago but lost my ability to do so when little guy came home 🙂 THANKS!!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Heather, Dorothy is one of my heroes, so I'm glad to know you found me through her. It is good to know that the therapy tips are helpful to you; I have many more I hope to post eventually. Thank you for letting me know you are reading along!

      Reply
  21. Teresa
    January 24, 2011

    Just found your blog a few weeks ago, but am going to add it as one of my regulars. I am an adoptive mom of 5.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Teresa, I'm so glad you found us. There are some wonderful women here who leave comments that are even better than my posts! I hope you'll join the conversation.

      Reply
  22. Donna
    January 24, 2011

    I love how you share what you are learning through your journey. Your insights have led me on many of our own journeys. Sometimes I have been able to use your thoughts to know what we are looking at with some of our adoption adversities. Thanks for not painting a fairy tail, adopting from the hard places can be messy, but with lots of support of one another, we can make the journey a little easier.
    God Bless and keep up the great work:)

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Donna, we are definitely in this together. It was such a delight to meet your family last summer — I hope to see you again when you come to watch your son run like the wind.

      Reply
  23. Heidi
    January 24, 2011

    I love hearing about your family and find your parenting tips profound in their simplicity. Mostly, what you write is often what I need to hear, so I think if you keep following the voice of the Spirit, you will never go wrong in what you post. 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing your heart and your family with us.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Heidi, I think of you nearly every day when I cover Eby with his blanket. Thank you once again — and thank you for your encouraging words.

      Reply
  24. Farm Chick
    January 24, 2011

    I feel so blessed by your blog! My hubby and I have two biological blessing boys and 1 sweet adopted baby boy. We believe God is going to add to our numbers through adoption. We are reading and praying and waiting. It is SO helpful to hear from those who have walked this road before us. Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  25. Tisha
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa, Happy Blogiversary!! 🙂

    Although I have been a faithful reader of your blog and have already seen all of your posts, I SO enjoyed that recap of the year! It was a great reminder of suggestions you've made over time that I may have implemented for a while, then let slip. You really should write a book, in your spare time. 🙂

    I would love to hear more about homeschooling from you, as a mom who has obviously been quite successful in the home educating realm.

    I also like learning about any tips you may have for negotiating the needs-schedules-activities-clothing-belongings-chores of everyone in a large family.

    The posts where you share some of your own personal feelings about all that you go through are always valildating.

    My Learning Curve has taught me so much.

    God has given you such a valuable ministry to us all. Thank you for the way you pour yourself out to help others.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Tisha, thank you so very much this feedback. I'm always trying to figure out what will be most helpful and interesting to my readers, but it is hard to know sometimes. I hope to see you at the Empowered to Connect conference in Denver!

      Reply
  26. Laura
    January 24, 2011

    Well, as your older sister, I enjoy hearing about your life and that of all my neices and nephews. Plus this school year it also updates me on my Caleb since I think he spends more time at your house than in the dorms! While I do not have little children anymore, it is fun to hear your tips and see some of them work with my preschool classes. Happy Anniversary!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Thank you Laura. Yes, we see lots of Caleb, and it is great fun.

      Reply
  27. Dana
    January 24, 2011

    Hello! This is my first time commenting and I am a newbie to your blog! 🙂 I just found you 3 or 4 days ago and have really enjoyed reading all of your past posts on adoption and attachment. We are an adoptive family with 3 children all adopted from foster care. (ages 6, 4, 2) We have had a hard last couple of years transitioning our daughter (adopted at 2.5 yrs old) into the family who we believe has RAD. After many doctors, counselors, and therapists, we still are not any closer to getting any answers..(we have seen little to no progress in 2 years!) BUT the things I have learned from other mom's who are walking this road, along with God's grace has been what has gotten us through. Some days I just need to go to a RAD mom blog and hear that I can make it and that someone understands! I absolutely love your blog and would love to hear more about specific RAD behaviors and how you work through them.
    So glad to have found you! And just in case you happen to be having one of those days..you know the one!…You can make it! And I understand! 🙂 (we all need to hear it from time to time!)

    Blessings to you and your beautiful family!! Happy Anniversary to your blog! 🙂

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Dana, thank you for your sweet an encouraging comment. I hope you are able to find help for your daughter. It took us two years before we began working with our therapist and she helped us turn everything around. We are so thankful. Have you checked out the resources on Empowered to Connect? The videos are fabulous — and free. Blessings on your family.

      Reply
  28. Dawn
    January 24, 2011

    I love your blog. I have been so inspired by so many of your posts!!!! I love hearing it all- as a homeschooling mommy, with 8 children 11 and under- all adopted- facing some similar things, and just wanting to honor God in it all- just love seeing others in the same "places" we are at. Being encouraged to keep going!!! Thank you!!!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Dawn, I know I've said this before, but your children are just beautiful. I love the photo at the top of your blog. I agree, it is good to have people who understand our unusual lives!

      Reply
  29. Sarah
    January 24, 2011

    Hi! My name is Sarah and I love to read blogs by and about big families, especially adoptive families! I love your learning curve! Come visit my blogs!

    mybipolarteenagelife.blogspot.com
    carriedinhishands.blogspot.com

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Sarah, I'm glad you enjoy my blog. Thank you for the comment.

      Reply
  30. heather
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa! I would LOVE to hear how you went about finding funds to finance your kids' adoptions. We recently added to our family through another adoption, and have been findingit difficult to pay down the debt we have from it, even though we have tried fundraisers. I actually think people are just tired of us adopting, and don't want to help with the funds. Would be great to hear some of your ideas! Thanks! keep writing – you're such an encouragement!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Heather, thank you for the comment and topic suggestion!

      Reply
  31. Connie
    January 24, 2011

    Thank you for opening up your heart and life to us, Lisa. I'm starting down the road of treatment for a child newly diagnosed with Reactive Attachment Disorder and transracial adoption. Life is very hard right now. (HUGE understatement.) I stumbled upon your website one night when I was desperately seeking help. It was like a drink of cool water to me. Thanks again.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Connie, I am so glad to hear that. I'm very happy that you have found help and are beginning treatment — it is so important. Blessings.

      Reply
  32. Giann
    January 24, 2011

    I must explain why a 161/2 year old girl wants to read your blog. I want to gain understanding about what it is like adopting children from the hard places and what large family life is like. I am an avid reader (and blogger) that has a heart for adoption and prays for people who are adopting and have adopted. I have enjoyed reading about your many adventures through this blog! Keep it up!

    I am also a sucker for photography, ( I have enjoyed the photos on here! 🙂 ), which leads me to the question….What kind of camera does your son use? I know it has nothing to do with your blog but, I am just curious. (and you said we could ask about anything… 🙂 )

    Happy Blogiversary!!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Giann, I always appreciate your comments and am so glad you read my blog. We have a Nikon D70S which Rusty uses much better than I do – he's also quite good at Photoshop. I have a little "cheater" camera too, a Canon Powershot, that I carry with me when I don't want the big camera. Rusty cringes when I post pictures from that camera, but I can't always have a great picture! It's too much pressure. Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  33. Crystal
    January 24, 2011

    I just found your blog a couple weeks ago and have so enjoyed learning from you. We have two daughters adopted domestically. Our 8 year old seems to have some sensory issues – she's having an OT evaluation done tomorrow. I was reading through some of your posts and jotting down notes. Thank you so much for sharing your life and your heart!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Crystal, I am so glad you found an OT to do an evaluation; I hope you get some great insights into how you can help your daughter. Thank you for reading my blog and leaving a comment!

      Reply
  34. shannoncl
    January 24, 2011

    Learning curve and how you restore yourselves as individual adults and as a family! Keep writing!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Thank you Shannon!

      Reply
  35. Amy
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa,

    I saw your blog on an adoptive mom's blogroll, and have been following it ever since my husband and I decided to adopt our third child (but first time adopting!). We are adopting internationally, transracially, and our child will probably be a toddler. Your blog has been such a blessing to me, and I've learned much! Thank you! I think my favorite posts are about attachment, but really, anything adoption-related.

    My question would be… How did your biological children respond after bringing home your adopted children? I have no idea regarding your story, and how many you brought home. I just ask because when my four year old daughter became a big sister (granted, she was a brand new two year old), she transformed from this sweet child into someone I didn't recognize, and I felt like it lasted 9 months! She is still a Momma's Girl, and I worry about how she'll react when we need to invest our hearts into a child from a hard place.

    Also, would love to hear more about transracial adoption.

    Thanks so much!

    Reply
  36. Tonggu Momma
    January 24, 2011

    Happy Blogoversary! I love it when you share your heart, however that looks in terms of topics.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Thank you, TM!

      Reply
  37. One Thankful Mom
    January 24, 2011

    Amy, you have a valid concern about your daughter. You know her personality best and how she will cope. I would take that into consideration as you make decisions about the age and sex of the child you are going to adopt. Some of our children are more resilient and have coped with the changes in our home and family better than others. In our case, we brought home three children in the spring of 2007 and one in the summer of 2008, which definitely created a huge shift in our family in every way. Thank you for your comment!

    Reply
  38. Tyra
    January 24, 2011

    Hi Lisa, I found your blog through AAI when we first began our adoption process in the summer of 08. I have loved reading about your journey and your sweet family. We just traveled to ET in november for our first court date, encountered several paperwork snags, and had a court date again today. We will find out the results in the morning! We are hoping to bring our daughter home soon. it's been a long wait. : )
    I've learned so much from you about parenting in general and appreciate you sharing your life. You posted my question about food and meal planning once and I still go back to those answers. : )
    Tyra

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Hello fellow AAI mommy! Tyra, I'm sorry your wait has been so long. I remember waiting and waiting for the call that we had passed court, and when we failed, I buried my head in my pillow and cried. It's like labor, the pain is hard to remember once you have your little one in your arms, but in the present, it is very tough. Thank you for leaving a comment and hopefully I'll get back to more writing about large family life.

      Reply
  39. Nancy
    January 24, 2011

    HI THERE SWEET BLOGGIE FRIEND! i SO love admire, respect, your candor and transparency and honesty. For those if us with children from hard places, connecting with others in similar shoes, can be tough. thank you for this small gift to me.
    Also as a mama to many, I'd LOVE more practical tips on how to manage it all. Grocery runs. laundry. Kiddos chores. Extracurricular activities. Dating vs. courting.
    I really enjoy Tuesday topics. It's such a wonderful place to hear the voices of many.
    Thank you for all!
    Nancy-of the crazy 8

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 24, 2011

      Nancy, I used to be so good at all of those practical things — but the last few years have shaken my confidence. Lately I've been feeling like I just might have some organizational skills still buried in me; maybe writing about them will revive them. Thank you for the suggestions and being a blogging friend.

      Reply
  40. charity
    January 24, 2011

    ah, lisa…it's a fun assignment sometimes to try to put into words what strikes a chord inside of you and makes you come back time and again…my first introduction to your blog was a link, from where, i've forgotten, to your meditations on a messy life. such an eloquent voice to things i could have written. my own private thoughts that perhaps we were crazy to follow the impressions God had sent to pursue international adoption(s) given that we were a homeschooling family of 7 already….many concerns were laid to rest as soon as i saw your family photo, and i realized how many, many wonderful families simliar to ours were heeding that same voice. the reality that our life may turn out to be more than we had hoped or expected, and that there is some sorrow for that mixed in with the joys…

    Reply
  41. charity
    January 24, 2011

    and the beauty of watching your family grow, overcome, love…and knowing that i am a really good follower, and i benefit greatly just by seeing that it can be done and done well, to bless the lives of all who live in our home…i am grateful every time for a pioneer blazing the trail ahead of us. "go where there is no path, and leave a trail" sometimes, all i need is to know it CAN be done, and that gives me great hope. i personally benefit most by hearing how you and russ are dealing with the practical aspects of juggling so many balls at once, and keeping your marriage strong in the midst, though i am eagerly reading all posts with regards to what works for the newer children, and storing the info for future use. hope you're still diligently writing when we bring older ones home in the future! god bless~

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 25, 2011

      Charity, as I was reading your comment and I realized that when we were in the adoption process, I didn't know anybody who was struggling, or at least they weren't saying they were struggling. Everybody seemed to be doing just fine. Our agency required that we read Attaching in Adoption by Deborah Gray and I recall thinking, "Wow, this is scary stuff, but I'm so glad there is help for people who need it." Never in a million years did I imagine that I would be the one crying out for help not having any idea where we would find it. In our despair, Jesus heard us and He answered, and continues to answer. This is the most unexpected journey I have ever been on and I am so very glad that I am not alone, that Russ and I are clinging to one another, that I have friends and family who love me and my kids, and that I have this place to write and share with all of you. Thank you for your comments over the months – your email address makes me smile every time I see it. One day you need to tell me the story behind it 🙂

      Reply
  42. Michelle
    January 24, 2011

    I found your blog through a friend's blog some time ago and have loved reading everything you've had to share. My husband & I have two very young children and although we haven't adopted, I love reading about your experience. (I do work for an agency that handles foster care adoptions so it is close to my heart.) I also love hearing about your family life, homeschooling and raising children. I appreciate your transparency in sharing your struggles and what God is teaching you in your everyday journey through life. I am always encouraged or inspired in some way. Thank you so much for taking the time to share. It's awesome to think that you can't know the full measure of your influence – until perhaps God shares it with you in eternity. 🙂

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 25, 2011

      Michelle, it is awesome — and weighty. I hope I can encourage you! Oh, foster care is becoming dear to my heart…I think about it all the time and wonder if the Lord might lead us that way eventually. I need to give my kids more time before we add more needs to our very full cup. Thank you so much for leaving a comment!

      Reply
  43. Colleen
    January 25, 2011

    Your blog has been so very helpful to me. I use many of the tools I have learned from you in my parenting. You have also encouraged me in my walk with God and I thank you for that! Thank you for your honesty, thank you for your time, thank you for sharing your heart. You are a gift from God.

    Colleen

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 25, 2011

      Colleen, more than anything I hope I can point women, just like myself, to Jesus – so thank you for letting me know that I am encouraging you in your faith. I'm glad to hear you are gleaning some parenting help too!

      Reply
  44. Rachel
    January 25, 2011

    I save this website as a valuable resource for how to approach and deal with many of the adoption issues that can arise. I am a pre-adoptive parent and have found so many of your articles to be very educational! Both your own experiences and the combined wisdom of your followers make this a wealth of "hard places" parenting help. Thank you!

    Rachel
    Adopting Seamus from Eastern Europe from Reece's Rainbow

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 25, 2011

      Rachel, congratulations on your new son — I hope he will be home soon. You are so wise to prepare yourself well. I hope you are taking advantage of all of the great resources on Empowered to Connect. I wish it had been available before we brought our first children home! Thank you for reading! Please let me know when Seamus gets home.

      Reply
  45. Diane
    January 25, 2011

    Hi, I read your blog everyday and learn so much. Thanks for introducing me to Karin and her work. I saw her speak in Victoria, it was enlightening.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 25, 2011

      Diane, thank you for reading so faithfully and leaving a comment to let me know. I'm so glad you got to hear Karyn Purvis speak – she has a gift.

      Reply
  46. Paula
    January 25, 2011

    Lisa, I know I have told you before that your blog saved my family from implosion, and helped me to know that we needed an attachment therapist. I love everything you write about your journey with Dimples and Honeybee; much of it has been directly helpful to my own life. Keep on sharing, please.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 25, 2011

      Paula, it seems like you and I have been on this road for a long time! I am so glad you sought help for your family; the right therapist can make all the difference in the world. Thank you for leaving a comment!

      Reply
  47. Tisha
    January 25, 2011

    Hi Lisa,
    I am a new reader, but I just love your blog. I really appreciate your honesty and openness. We adopted twin girls from Ethiopia 18 months ago. They will be 4 next month and it hasn't been easy. Your words have been very encouraging to me. Thank you!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Tisha, I'm so glad you found my blog. Your family is just beautiful – what an adventure you are on!

      Reply
  48. MImi
    January 25, 2011

    I love reading your blog— my children have not come from adoption, but you speak to my heart and help me be aware of the larger world around me, as I do have friends who have grown their family through adoption. Please continue writing about anything you want to, you speak of Love and thoughts that everyone has with any kind of family.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Mimi, it is great to know that my writing has applications to families who have not adopted. Your friends must be thankful that you are aware and sensitive to the complexities of their families. Thank you for the comment.

      Reply
  49. Leslee
    January 25, 2011

    I'm just happy for regular encouragement as 47 y/o mama to be thoughtful and intentional in my own family of 5 children, some homeschooled, some in school, some aspiring to school; 3 adopted and two homemade. Thank you for sharing with us!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Leslee, I just turned 47 this month! Our little ones are going to keep us young — right? Thank you for reading.

      Reply
  50. Ann
    January 25, 2011

    I love all your posts! I think it's great that you write about a variety of topics–it's what makes your blog the best! I love that you present your real life and you aren't afraid to talk about the hard things–while still respecting your children's privacy. I also appreciate that you don't write every day–this probably sounds weird but I sometimes worry about reading blogs of writers who post so much, so often, because I worry they are feeling obligated to blog (entertain me) more than parent their many small children.
    Your blog is certainly a ministry. Thank you! Ann

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Ann, good words — it is easy to get off balance and let our blog become too important. I'm trying to sort that out myself right now and Russ and I have been talking about it. I love your blog and I am going to meet you one day! We don't live that far apart.

      Reply
  51. Future Mama
    January 25, 2011

    Hello!!!! We are just starting our adoption, so your blog is so fun for us to read and wonder….hmmm…what will our life be like down the road!! 😉

    Much love,
    Future Mama http://expectingablessing.blogspot.com/

    Reply
  52. Michele
    January 25, 2011

    Lisa –
    I have been reading your blog for a little over a year. I found it during our 2nd/3rd adoption. It has given me so many good ideas and lots of encouragement as we continue to struggle with how to best help our daughter from our first adoption who comes from hard places. Many blessings to you and your family. Happy Anniversary and keep blogging!
    Michele

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Michele, so nice to hear from you — thank you!

      Reply
  53. Susan PD
    January 25, 2011

    Hi Lisa, Congratulations! I am one of the legions who loves your blog and thinks it is such a great resource for parents! I have gotten a lot of inspiration from you over the years and am happy to have met you once in person. So happy for you and hope you find lots of inspiration from your readers to keep it up. Susan PD

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Susan, thank you for all that you do for AAI families – we appreciate you. I hope we'll meet again one day!

      Reply
  54. Lisa Van D
    January 25, 2011

    Happy Anniversary! Your writings encourage and bless me. Eventhough my adopted children are not from "hard places" I've learned so much from you. THANK YOU for sharing your life – you inspire me to gratitude, graciousness, and generosity (of time and love). May God bless you richly! P.S.We miss your family!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Lisa, we miss your family too. Who knew that I would become an adoptive mother not long before you, the experienced adoptive mother, would move away? Blessings on your family!

      Reply
  55. Signe
    January 25, 2011

    Hi, I'm your lame friend that lives three miles away that can't seem to find time to have coffee with you. I see your kids, which is great, but I miss you my friend. I like the family updates, so I don't feel quite so disconnected.

    Keep up the writing, it blesses so many people.

    Signe

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Signe, we really do need to get together. Our families are running on side-by-side hamster wheels – we just need to hop over! Stop by and surprise me; I'll make coffee. If you bring some little people to play with Eby and Little Man, our joy will be complete.

      Reply
  56. Christina
    January 26, 2011

    Hello! And thank you for your honesty, humility, willingness to share. You are an inspiration to me for so many reasons. Wish I still lived in the Spokane area…I might show up with Russian Tea cookies and coffee at 6 AM and invade your quiet time to just help soak up the grace of God by being in your presence. Peace!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Christina, that would be a lovely surprise. I wish you still lived in Spokane too! I spent hours there yesterday while Rusty had his braces taken off. The extra blessing was going to Target!

      Reply
  57. Sara
    January 26, 2011

    I love the learning curve posts. I like seeing tidbits of everyday life. I learn so much from you on attachment as well. Our son is not home yet and I anticipate learning a lot more from your experiences once that part of our journey unfolds.

    Thank you!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Sara, you are so far ahead of where I was before we brought our children home. I thought I was educated, but somehow I didn't find many people talking about the challenges we might face, or maybe I just didn't have ears to hear. Thank you for your comment.

      Reply
  58. Amy
    January 26, 2011

    Been reading your blog for ages…since back when it was the old blog. Have 4 adopted children, 2 bio and always looking for parenting ideas/sharing thoughts on raising children with traumatic backgrounds. It is hard stuff…necessary to have some caring community to help the days along.
    Enjoying rocking my kids along with ya'll.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Amy, so nice to hear from you! Yes, you've been with me a long time. I'm glad to hear you are rocking – I rocked four kids last night.

      Reply
  59. Fiona
    January 26, 2011

    Hello, my name is Fiona, and I am a working Mama to 5 kids, 3 adopted from China and Ethiopia. I love how you individually tailor your parenting to the specific needs of each child and I have been challenged and motivated by it. I have started to see my children more individually as a result, our little confident and secure 6 year old form China who has been with us since he was 3, he cannot walk due to CP, but he is ready to take on the world. Our 7 year old girl home from China for only 6 months, also with CP but very mild – she hurts and fights and yells and kicks and loves and sobs, and needs so much. Our newest addition from Ethiopia who came to us from a disrupted first adoption, who at 12 wonders if we will really want him forever or tire of him as his first family in the US did. Then our bio boys, 11 and 14 – our rocks who have accepted and adjusted, shared and cared. I feel very blessed to have found your blog and learn so much from you. Thank you and happy anniversary!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Fiona, thank you for introducing yourself and telling me about your family. I'm so glad my blog is helpful to you!

      Reply
  60. Jen Lee
    January 26, 2011

    Your blog has been an incredible blessing to me. We are in the process of adopting three children from a newly-opened country in Africa (starts with a C, but I can't put it online!). Our 7 year old girl, 6 year old girl and 2 year old boy (we have a 2 year old adopted at birth) should be here this May and I am planning to homeschool them. Your blog has been a wealth of help to me and our kids aren't even here yet! I have read several books that you have recommended and found them extremely helpful. A couple topics I would like to know more about are how to do all of this adoptive parenting initially with 6 and 7 year old girls who don't speak English (they will speak French). I haven't bee able to find much info on that. Also, how do you deal with disciplining both children from hard places versus (in our case) a child adopted at birth or biological children at the same time. I am so thankful for all you share with us . . . please keep it coming. It has (and I know will be) a life saver to me!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Jen, great questions! I hope I can help. I'm glad you found your way to A Bushel and A Peck and hope I can offer some support when your new children join your family.

      Reply
  61. zeelah
    January 26, 2011

    our family is still quite new– we have a single daughter (so far) through adoption and are awaiting the arrival of a sibling or two. i cannot begin to tell you what an encouragement your family as well as your followers have been to my family and me. i'm curious if you'd share a little more about your children's views on adoption and what kind of support you have within your church and community. also, how do you speak God's truth into little questions that i'm sure pop up (ie- why do i have brown skin?) with your littles? thank you!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Such good questions, thank you very much! It is much easier to write when I know I'm hitting on a topic that interests my readers. Congratulations on your growing family!

      Reply
  62. Margaret
    January 26, 2011

    Lisa,

    I am thankful for your blog and how much you share about yourself, your family, struggles and triumphs. I find My Learning Curve very helpful. I have also been inspired by your writing about how to nurture yourselves (the parents!) like Sharpening the Saw and the Restorative Sabbatical. As an adoptive parent of 2 older children from Ethiopia, there are so many moments when I am grateful for company on the journey of parenting.
    Happy Anniversary and many thanks.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 26, 2011

      Margaret, thank you for letting me know what you find most helpful. I'm glad to know that reading about how to take care of and restore yourselves has been helpful. It has been such a key to survival for us!

      Reply
  63. Lori S.
    January 27, 2011

    Through the almost three years of our adoption journey I am learning how valuable it is to walk along with others who are traveling the same road. I have found out things in my own experience in those three years that I never even knew I should be considering before adoption! I think it is so important to be honest and transparent about the issues – not to complain or to scare people off from adopting! But, to educate – not just those who would consider adoption, but also those who are watching us parent and often confused about what is going on. 🙂 I appreciate all the ways that you share – what you learn through therapy, personal experience, family news, spiritual topics, and books or resources. Thank you for so graciously including many of my questions in your Tuesday Topics!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 27, 2011

      Lori, it is great to hear from you. I appreciate the Tuesday Topics you have given me! I agree, I never want to discourage anybody from adopting, but I want to help families prepare themselves as best they can — I want families to learn from our mistakes and have their resources in place! We do a disservice to our newly adopted children when we don't lay a good foundation before they come home.

      Reply
  64. nancileamarie
    January 27, 2011

    Not sure how I found your blog either, but I have learned SO much. We just got our first foster baby this week. I really enjoy Tuesday topics and your learning curve–but its all good!! 🙂 Also, stuff on large family life–practical stuff. We have a pretty small family now, but I have a feeling it will get bigger. 🙂 Thanks again!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 27, 2011

      Nancilea, oh foster care again, it just seems to be tugging at my heart! I'm glad you like the practical tips and I hope to write more of them.

      Reply
  65. dawn
    January 31, 2011

    I can't remember if I posted (I think I did), but I would like to add to that post. I would also love to see you address how to deal with a physically aggressive child who becomes aggressive whenever he is frustrated or confronted with something he's done wrong. Again, LOVE your blog!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      January 31, 2011

      Dawn – oh boy, this is a big and touchy subject. I'll give it a go.

      Reply
  66. Kathleen
    February 2, 2011

    Newer reader here, from St. Louis. 2 bio kids & an adopted sibling group of 4 – from the US.

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      February 2, 2011

      Kathleen, thanks for joining us!

      Reply
  67. Leica
    February 4, 2011

    Hello! I've been reading your blog for a few months now and learning so much, I especially love to hear about your family. We have one bio daughter and are hoping to also adopt soon. Thank you for writing!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      February 4, 2011

      Leica, I'm so glad you are enjoying my blog. I look forward to hearing about your adoption!

      Reply
  68. Jan
    February 4, 2011

    I loved you long before I met you because of your blog, and now that I know you I love your blog even more. We all love Honeybee and Dimples, and we all miss you like crazy. We wish you many more years of keeping us all connected and smiling. Lots and lots and lots of love to you from Selam, Tizita, and their mama!

    Reply
    1. One Thankful Mom
      February 4, 2011

      Jan, we love you all too. Maybe you and girls should come to Idaho for a visit!

      Reply

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