April 14, 2010

Sesame Street Birthday!

Well, we celebrated Madeline's birthday on Saturday with her Sunday School friends.  We transformed the backyard into Sesame Street.  We had Abby Caddaby's Playhouse, Oscar the Grouch Trashcan Toss, Pin the Nose on Elmo, and Big Bird Fishing Adventures.  It was a very fun party and we were so blessed by all her friends that came for the afternoon.  The cake was absolutely INCREDIBLE!  If you ever need a cake or dinners, you need to contact Jamie at http://www.dinnersbyjamie.com/ - unreal!  There wasn't a drop left and it was a two tier cake! 

Madeline had a blast and I hope that her friends enjoyed the day :)  We ended the evening with friends, eating pizza, and hanging out by the fire pit.  It was  a perfect night!

On Sunday, we went to Willow City, Texa (close to Fredericksburg) to a baby shower.  My best friend, Shelly, hosted a shower for her nephew, Case.  He was born in January and they had a picnic at an old schoolhouse in his honor.  It was so fun and th girls had such a great time.  The food was fantastic and they have fun activities for the girls - bubbles and kites!  The girls really enjoyed it and it made for a great Sunday afternoon with our family.

This week marks a special time for us.  We are submitting our I600A to USCIS for the adoption of Tanya and Liza from Ukraine.  God-willing, they will be joining our family this year.  We have a lot of paperchasing to do but I am ready!  Its been a few years since completing our dossier for Molly but I think I have enough energy :)  Tanya is 15 and Liza is 10.  There is some concern that Ukraine will close international adoptions due to a lady sending her 7 year old adopted child back to Russia. We are praying that this does not happen and that Ukraine will realize that there are more good adoptions than bad.  If we submit our documents in June, we could travel literally that month!  We are in a huge push to raise money and have so many fundraisers going at this time.  We have made $170 on Adoption Bug (www.adoptionbug.com/journeythruthehills) and we've done well on our 100 for 100 = $10,000 on our Facebook.  We raised enough money to send in our I600A form which costs $830!  We will need to come up with $12,500 for our attorney in Ukraine by the time we leave in June or July.  That is a lot of money but hey, its ALL God's money and He will provide is this is His will.  We rely heavily on His Sovereignty!

Well, I think that is all for now.  We have an exciting appointment in about an hour!  We are in court to try to gain custody of a precious little foster care baby (1 month old).  We are pretty much just trusting God with this placement.  It wasn't anything we were searching for and we agreed to help the birth family.  Its a sticky situation but I know that God has a certain plan for this little guy's life.  We'll know something today (hopefully).  So, gotta run for now.  Enjoy the pics of the birthday party!


April 10, 2010

Two Years Ago....our lives changed forever!

I honestly can't believe that its been two years since we brought Madeline home from the hospital.  Where in the world did the time go?  I remember about a year ago, I was in the grocery store and a man could tell I was a little frustrated with the girls.  Madeline was in the basket screaming and Molly was hanging on the side begging for candy.  This man said "The days seem to go on for years and the years will seem like minutes."  That has stuck in my head and I am reminded that time really does fly by and especially the older I get!  UGH!

Two years ago, a young woman made the hardest and selfless decision of her life - she gave me her child.  I remember my stepmother saying to me when we announced our news to adopt "You mean a girl is going to just give you her baby?"  I could tell that it was foreign to some and that the idea that someone would "give" me their child was unimaginable.  But, she did and she did it with love.  I remember that day like it was yesterday.  I had never in my life been through such an emotional day.  None of the  miscarriages I had ever had could compare to the feelings I felt that day.  I almost felt guilty for taking this child from her mother though she was voluntarily placing her child in my arms.  She stared at Madeline and held her for hours, talking to her, sobbing, and asking if I thought she would grow up to be angry at her.  She kept asking if Madeline would ever understand and know how much she truly loved her.  Oh, talk about RIPPING YOUR HEART OUT!  It was unbelievalbe.  She walked out of that room with a sadness that I can't imagine.  But, she also walked out with a glow.. she had just chosen life for this child!  She was certain and confident in her decision.  She gave us the greatest gift a person could ever give us.  There was nothing to compare to that day.  My heart still aches thinking of her and the pain she must have felt the day she left her baby with us.  I am forever grateful to her and Madeline will grow up knowing the sacrifice she made and the love she had for her.  Thank you, B!  I love you!

So, we embark on the Two's!  We actually started around 20 months.  The "cute" little fits are funny at times (just because she is so darn cute!) but they are getting out of hand.  Its hard to discipline a two year old so if anyone has any tips to share, please do! 

On Thursday (her actual birthday), we had plans to go camping.  At the last minutes, the plans changed, so we grilled steaks and Molly made Madeline a homemade strawberry birthday cake.  We had presents, cake and ice cream with our family - it was a sweet time.  She LOVED her cake!  Today, we are having her little friends over for a Sesame Street Birthday!  She is excited and we have transformed the backyard into a child's version of Sesame Street with Big Bird Fishing Adventure, Oscar the Grouch Trash Can Toss, and Pin the Nose on Elmo!  It should be a fun day and I'll post pictures after the party!

Blessings to you all!!!
Becca, Craig, Molly and Madeline

April 4, 2010

Happy Easter!

It has been quite the week.  We have really looked forward to my Daddy and his wife coming to visit!  We cleaned the house, went grocery shopping and waited in anticipation (actually Molly started counting the days about 32 days ago!).  They would be traveling from Mississippi.  On Monday, I woke up with horrible neck pain.  Thinking that I slept wrong, I took some Motrin and went on my day.  Well, that night I had to pop a muscle relaxor and did so for the next three nights.  I must have taken a whole bottle of Motrin and those that know me well, know that I don't take medicine well AT ALL!  Craig knew I was hurting and on Thursday, it became worse.  You know how they ask you at the ER "On a scale from 1 to 10, what is your pain level?"  Well, I've never had to say "10" but I was VERY close to saying 15 on Thursday night!  My mom came over and helped me with the girls and took Molly to gymnastics!  I made a call to our doctor friend and he called me in a steroid.  With Good Friday the next day, he was apparently out of town.  Our other doctor friend came over and did some neck stretches on me which helped a little.  Great to have docs that still make house calls :)  Anyway, Daddy and Jodie showed up on Thursday night (very late) and we had a great day shopping and having dinner on the Riverwalk.  We spent some time on Saturday shopping in San Marcos and cooking out that evening.  It has been so much fun having them here! The pain in my neck subsided for a couple of days and I was so thankful!  However, it started hurting again today in church and so I am now getting a little concerned.  Maybe its stress (I seem to be under quite a bit of it lately:) )  but I think I'll get it checked out this week.  I would appreciate the prayers. 

Daddy and Jodie leave tomorrow and its sad to see them go.  We look forward to seeing them again in May when we travel to Mississippi for a wedding.  I do wish they lived closer to us - my girls absolutely love them.  We have had such a wonderful and blessed time this weekend. 

Here are some photos of the week and a couple of the girls "Egg Hunting."  They would not cooperate for Easter Morning photos so it was hard to get the two of them together in their matching Easter dresses. 

I pray that you are reminded each and every day (not just today) of the price that was paid for your adoption into the family of God.  Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice for us.  May He receive all the glory and honor for your salvation.  Its nothing you have done or a choice you have made but its by grace you have been saved.  Praise His Name!

Happy Easter! The Hills