Difference

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Happy Chinese New Year!

What a difference 1 year makes. Last year on Chinese New Year, we changed our paperwork to reflect our decision to accept 1 or 2 Chinese children up to 4 year’s old, boy or girl, and with or without special needs. Here they are!

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The above pictures were taken on Chinese New Year at Mr. Chen’s. It was our first visit to Mr. Chen’s since returning from China. The boys were in love. If Fu Fu could have crawled into the noodle bowl he would have. Zan and Ge Ge were all about some Egg Drop Soup. Now that we have had “real” Chinese food (in China), I will have to say that Mr. Chen’s is pretty authentic. I have always thought Mr. Chen’s smelled different than other Chinese restaurants. Now I know what the smell is. China.

All three boys enjoyed looking around the store. Of course we had to buy a few items. Not frogs in a bag.

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How do you celebrate Chinese New Year? Don’t forget the Lantern Festival on February 6!

Love, Lori

I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the world.But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive iadoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. Galatians 4:1-7 ESV

 

 

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Clean

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Welcome to my makeshift riverbank…

Yesterday, our washer broke. It will not start, move, nothing. Nada. We went out in search of a new washer (and possibly dryer). The one we wanted is on back order, and they are all so expensive. We decided to just call the Maytag man to fix our 15 year old washer.

In the meantime, we have 3 boys. The eldest has no uniform pants for school tomorrow. Hence, the riverbank. Wow, what a time-consuming process. Wash, soak (for at least 20 minutes), agitate, rinse, rinse, rinse, and drain (for a long time). At least we still have our dryer, but it takes forever to get to that step. The cane was my Papa’s.

I have been thinking of all the people in the world who have no washer, no dryer, and no clean water to rinse their clothes. The hours it must take them to gather the materials they need and get their chores done, just to start again tomorrow. Not their job (if they are lucky enough to have one). Just their chores.  

I am also thinking of the rinsing process. Fill the tub. Agitate. Drain. Fill the tube. Agitate. Drain. Fill the tub. Agitate. Drain. This is not a speedy process. Neither is getting ourselves clean. We fill, fill, fill and pour out, out, out. We have to fill again. Rinsing. Renewing. Growing. Sometimes painful, when that shepherd’s crook guides us somewhere we would prefer not to go. Burning. Refining. Shining.

May you all have a blessed week. Please pray for our washer.

Love, Lori

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:4

Fast

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Last year, I heard Stovall Weems of Celebration Church in Jacksonville, FL share about fasting. His church partners with other churches all over the world each year for a 21-day Daniel Fast. It is called Awakening. I felt God was calling me to participate. I did and had a wonderful (albeit hungry) experience. There was a book to read (in addition to the Bible) and encouraging videos to watch 3 times a day. I used The Ultimate Guide to the Daniel Fast by Kristen Feola as a menu guide. A quote from her book: “Participating in a Daniel Fast requires eliminating commonly enjoyed foods for twenty-one days as an act of worship and of consecrating oneself to God.” There is a list of allowed foods and foods to avoid. There is definitely a “fasting zone” you want to get into, and if you cheat, it is really hard to get back there.

Daniel 10:2-3 ESV In those days I, Daniel, was mourning for three weeks. I ate no delicacies, no meat or wine entered my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, for the full three weeks.

Well, I am going to do it again this year. This time Bill is going to do it with me. Which is really saying a lot, as he is not a bean person. Or a tofu person. He is very much a meat person. Any kind of meat will do, and fry it twice or make it bloody. Stovall’s church started their fast on Sunday. We were out of town, so we are starting tomorrow. We will probably use Kristen Feola’s devotional from her book this time. Kristen’s recipes are wonderful. After my body detoxed last year, I really did not miss meat/sugar/etc. She also has a great website and adds new recipes all the time. Tomorrow we are having Banana-Fig Oatmeal with Almond Butter, Confetti Hummus, Blackberry-Avocado-Mango Salad, and Black & White Chili. Sounds yummy, huh?

Shortly after my fast last year, we agreed to at least open up our adoption options to boys or girls 0-3 years old with or without special needs. Well you know what happened with that… Wonder what God has in store for us this year? I have some issues that I need true guidance in, so hopefully this fast will yield clarity and wisdom in those areas.

I said we went out of town. Here are a few pics from our trip!

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2012

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I posted on my Facebook page yesterday that 2012 would be the year for reading, running, and blogging. Well, here is my first blog of 2012. Whoop!

Reading: I love to read! My Kindle is awesome. Right now I am reading Mockingjay, the last book in The Hunger Games trilogy. Really great series. My husband and I are reading through and studying the Bible together over the next year. Fabulous way to connect with all the activity in our house!

Running: I love to run! I am very very slow, but it is a form of worship for me. I turn on the praise music, and we talk. I mean really talk. He tells me some out there stuff that I do not get any other time. My first race on tap is the St. Paddy’s 5K on March 17. Join me, won’t you?

Blogging: I love to blog! Hopefully the things I blog about are useful or encouraging to others. I like to blog about my faith and my family mostly. My goal is one blog a week. Of course, if you have been reading my blog already, you know my husband is a fantastic blogger!

Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. Revelation 2:5 ESV

Three questions for you:

1. What are your favorite books?

2. If you run, what are some of your running resources or favorite races?

3. What are some of your favorite blogs?