Tuesday, December 14, 2010


So my heart has been torn out for this little guy. Oh man. You have to go here and read his story. Don't turn away, don't stop reading. Thank you so much, Jeannett, for getting this thing going!

Sunday, December 05, 2010

How we got here

For those of you who have been following this blog for a while, you know that we are in the midst of adopting a little girl from Ethiopia. It is and has been quite the process, with lots of factors and experiences that have brought us here...Let me tell you a little about it.

I have always, as long as I can remember, had a heart for other countries and cultures. I remember being 5 and in an Awanas class and telling my teacher that I wanted to be a missionary. I wanted to tell people, to share, to experience with others the Light.

When I was 17 I traveled to Ensenada, Mexico with an interdenominational group from Washington. While ministering on the streets of Ensenada, I was able to hold and pray for this little boy, Salvador.


I was done in. In love. Ruined. From this point on, my heart was for adoption.

Though Jason was on this trip with me, we were not yet "us." (another story entirely).

A few years later we were married (finally!) and thus began our journey. It seems he knew fairly early on that I was open to and wanted to eventually pursue adoption for our family. Having never been a Daddy before, he will tell you, he was not totally sure about the idea of adoption. The thought of raising and loving a biological child was uncharted territory, and adding an adoption into the mix was even more unknown.

Fast forward a couple of years and a couple of kids, we were blessed to meet and share life with the Downen family. Talk about huge hearts and huge love. They did and still do blow me away. When we first met them, they had two bio boys and had just brought home their first two adopted children from China.

Eventually they had another bio son and continued to adopt more children. 11 more to be exact. Yeah, you can be amazed! During the process of bringing home their first two of these 11, the posted from Ethiopia about the older of the two siblings, Marta. The minute I read this, tears, joy, laughter, I was full...again, I was undone. I called Jason and told him he had to check it out. This was his turning point. This is when "our" journey began. Here is the post, and the pictures...wow, the pictures.

Today we got some emails from Julie. She is in Addis, and sent some pictures of Marta.

She is so shy she will hardly let Julie take her picture, even though they are close.

When Julie told her that I would be coming for her soon, this was her response.

Thanks God.
Shortly after this we watched a documentary on PBS (yes, we are that family - we LOVE documentaries)!. For me, this solidified our call deep within me. Something stirred, came alive inside of me. We were in love with Ethiopia...we needed to do something. How could we not?

We began contacting Adoption Advocates International about what it would look like to start the process of adopting a child or children. It's been a long journey, we've moved cross country, added another bio baby, and had lots of challenges, and victories and questions and excitement.

I hope to, plan to, post more about the process and some of the routes we've taken, questions we've asked and been asked along the way. If any of you (are you out there?) readers have any questions you would like us to address, I would love to attempt to answer them here. Just let me know!

If you are interested in supporting our adoption financially, and helping us bring Kate home, please check out these sites. All of them are generously giving a portion of the proceeds to help her come to her forever family!

Saturday, October 30, 2010


I recently read a quote:

"You don't have to play by their rules if you don't require their rewards."
Wiliam P. Young

Can't get it out of my head.
It has resonated deep within me.

Ponder with me:

What would it look like...
To not care what "they" think
To live freely, passionately, totally abandoned
To go, do, be, think, act , say with no regard to what others will label you as

I don't know about you, but this is something I deal and struggle with daily.

I feel a pull, a call, a longing for complete abandon.
To love extravagantly. To live deeply and with purpose.
Sometimes it is so strong, it hurts.

Sometimes I want to sell it all, move to some little two room house (yes all 7 of us) and give away all the excess. But then that other part of me thinks "Oh no, but then I won't be well regarded, my kids won't be well dressed or popular or...blah, blah, blah."

I look at all we have, and all we continue to claim to need. I see our abundance and then hear myself thinking, "if only I had _____, then I would truly be happy."

I wonder why it is such a struggle to mesh those two parts of me.

I am feeling the challenge to live by another set of standards. To live out of what the Creator compels me to do. To show love by more than words and flowery thoughts.

To love to my hurt.

To live in a way that I no longer give regard to the rewards of the world.

I want to experience what it is to "Love Mercy, Act Justly, and Walk Humbly with My God." Wow....

I'm not sure what that will look like right now or what it will mean for our future.

But I'm looking...

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Chickpea and Black Bean Chili

This was going to be an attempt at a new weekly post - "Tasty Tuesday"
5 kids, homework, lunch making, paper signing, teething baby
Didn't make for a blog-type evening
We'll try a Semi-Wordless-Wednesday Post


I found this recipe at Allrecipes


Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Eager Hands Giveaway

I don't usually repost things, or post about giveaways. In fact, don't think I ever have...ever! But this one is worth it. My sweet friend, Lora, is giving away and fabulous pendant - hand stamped - beautiful! Check it out.

I Love this Girl.

She is real, she is raw, she is beautiful and amazing! A mom to 4 kiddos and one on the way, she works diligently, faithfully, gracefully to bring peace and honor to her family and home. Did I mentinon that
I love this Girl?!?!

Anyway - check out her blog, cruise her etsy shop - buy, be blessed!

Monday, August 30, 2010


There has been so much going on lately...so much! Many, many times I have thought "I need to blog that, " or "that would make a great post. " I am convinced my gravestone should say "She had a lot of good ideas." Seems things don't always materialize the way I would like or imagine them to. Maybe it's my lackadaisical ways, or maybe it's the five kids under 8...dunno...either way, it is what it is. So I'll try to get everything done in one post. It might be long, it might be disjointed - but it's my life!

Our summer has officially ended. The three older kids are back in school and loving it. I think they are enjoying it more than Mom and Dad are. It's so hard to know the "right" thing to do. Especially since "right" seems so illusive sometimes. I struggle with knowing what is the best, what is good, and what is settling. There are definitely things we disagree with and flat out don't like about the public school system. Things that boil our blood...grrrr. But at the same time I know that there are many, many good things for them to experience and learn - even through adversity and less than ideal situations. It's a constant question in my mind. I'm pretty sure someday we will end up homeschooling - just not sure when. Definitely don't want to get ahead of God on this one. Oh Wisdom, come, show yourself....stick around for while - you're much needed here!

With K, C, and M in school, these two guys are getting lots of snuggle time. How cute are they!?!?

We ended our summer break with a family trip to upstate NY to visit some very close, very dear friends. Two sets of friends, in fact! What a blessing. Jason baptized Kylie and Macey while we were there - such a beautiful time. I love my kiddos and love their unashamed love for God!

It was so great to reconnect with people we hadn't seen in a while. Even though we stayed busy, there were plenty of times where we just "were." Where we just shared life - love it! There is nothing like relationship that has endured years and experiences; losses and gains; ups and downs. Finding a group of people with like minds and hearts and vision and purpose and then being able to share life with them is a blessing beyond measure! Here is one of my favorite pics from the trip - their four amazing kiddos with our five - such an awesome group!!! If our kids grow up to be like theirs...wow...there is not much more I could hope for!
Hmmm...having issues with the photo thingy - can't get this one to delete or move or anything...oh well - they're cute enough to post twice!
Things are still moving along with our adoption process. We have found out that there are currently three families waiting in front of us. When we were told we had to wait until Malachi was 6 months old, we did not think these families would still be waiting. But, they are. So, we wait some more! It is difficult in some ways. But there is still such a peace knowing that God is in control. And He is good, and His timing is perfect!

One of the friends we visited in NY has an etsy shop full of super cute bags and stuff. I asked her to make a blanket for Kate - told her I was thinking of a ladybug-ish type thing. Check it out....LOVE IT!!! Thanks sooooo much Jenn!!!!

We are also gearing up for a yard sale soon. Here was my front play room on Sunday morning.

Ack...so much work to do....organizing and pricing and staging and selling! We are so grateful for all the donations we have received and the ones that are still coming in! Please join us in praying for favor on the Garage Sale and that all the items would sell!

God has been doing a lot of divine strategizing (is that a word?!) on our behalf lately, it seems. I was at the Discover Center this morning with a good friend and saw a lady there with a little girl in and Ergo Carrier that was obviously not her bio-baby. I took a chance, asked if she was adopted and found that, yes, she was brought home from Ethiopia in May. Such an encouragement to meet someone else who has walked through this journey! I also get to connect with another mom from the area that has just received their referral last week for a precious baby boy! So excited to connect and build relationship with other adoptive families. God is pretty cool!

Anyway, life is good. Loving this journey, loving this path with the Creator - even with the ups and downs, ins and outs - it is a blessed road to travel!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Birthdays, Horses, and Fundraising...oh my!

So, we are in crazy fund raising mode right now! Do you see the "ticker" on the side? It's moving...slowly, but surely it's moving - so encouraging! So far, all we've been doing is selling baked goods at our church and Jason's office. For those of you who have enjoyed (I hope) the goodies and who have given above and beyond - thank you so much! We're looking at doing a garage sale in a month or so as well as an enchilada dinner at church - kind of daunting to think about, but exciting too. It's hard to wrap my mind around the fact that in a little over two and half months we will get to "meet" our little girl! So many unknowns, so much excitement!

In other Thompson news - Macey turned 5 yesterday! We took her horseback riding for the first time at this cute little ranch in town. She had SOOOO much fun!

I now have a 7,6,5,3 and 3 month old.

WOW! Sounds crazy - but life is going fairly smoothly lately. I LOOOVVVEEEE having them home during the summer time - I like being and seeing the driving force in their little lives - though I know there are times we could use a break from each other, I am enjoying seeing who they are - all the time- apart from school. And I must be honest, I do believe I have 5 of the coolest, funniest, sweetest, craziest, most amazing kids on the planet!

So, life is good, God is good, and I'm anxiously awaiting what's next!

Friday, July 02, 2010

At what point does one become a "mommy." Some would say it's the moment you conceive. Others say it's the moment you realize you are growing a life inside you. Still others would say you are not fully a "mommy" until you are holding a life in your hands.
But what about those children who are not grown in your womb,

but in your heart?

When our adoption journey began a few years ago, this little girl was just a far off thought...a dream, a desire, but oh so very far away. As we grow closer to the time of our referral, I find myself wondering so many things. Is she even born yet? What are her surroundings? Is she cherished, longed for, loved...missed? Who is speaking into her, praying over her, loving on her?

I think of and pray for her birth family...

what are they going through? What are the circumstances that have led them down the path of giving their baby girl to someone else to love and raise?

Even though we have not seen her yet, and don't really know much about her, I find myself missing her. At times, when out with the other 5 kids, I find myself looking for her, feeling like there is someone missing in the mix. How do you miss someone you haven't even met? How do you love someone you have never held? The answer must be found in Him who loved us first, who adopted us and called us heirs and joint-heirs with His Son. God, help me love her as you first loved us...unconditionally, beautifully, perfectly....without fear or reserve.

I long for this little girl, born in my heart...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Wouldn't it be grand...

Wouldn't it be amazing....

If every morning you woke up and on your spotless dining room table, in your perfectly clean kitchen, overlooking a beautifully manicured, dog-poo-free yard was a beautifully bound notebook sitting next to a steaming cup of freshly brewed coffee and a super healthy breakfast? Wouldn't it be divine if you could sit for an hour or so and enjoy the quiet solitude of a peaceful morning while sipping your coffee and looking through the book? What, you may ask, would be in this book? Well, in my dream, it would be a detailed list of all the "hiccups" I would encounter in my day, along with intricate instructions on how to deal with them well, how to maintain my "fruit" while navigating my day

....wouldn't it be amazing....

Welcome to real life!

I wake up to an incessant three year old demanding juice - and if he doesn't get juice. NOW. one of you will not make it through the next 5 minutes. So I stumble downstairs and fumble for a sippy cup to fill with the brew-du-jour for my lovely little man and set him on couch. I rummage around for the french press (which I LOVE) and start the process of making this life giving brew. Around then the other kiddos come down stairs....all sleepy and snuggly and cute and...mine! Love, peace, happiness abounds, until: someone talks...agghhh...let IT begin! It's someone is sitting on my pillow, someone is looking at the baby and "I" was looking first, someone looked at me, someone touched me, someone stinks...seriously...aggghhhh. Somedays, most days, I stand dumbfounded, befuddled, speechless. I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO! I find myself overwhelmed, grumpy, irritable, angry....hmmm...finding my fruit rapidly falling to the floor. Oh, how I long for that book - the one that tells me how to be a kind, fair, gentle mom (referree?)

I realize the above paragraph sounds negative, complaining - yuck! I really do love being a mom, I adore my kids, I cherish these days together. My kids really don't fight ALL the time (though it feels like it sometimes). And quite often, my wonderful hubby does have coffee waiting for me in the morning. But, honestly - it's hard. Being in the trenches 24/7 can kinda get to you after a while. Honestly. Really.

I fight the urge to feel beaten down. I look at myself and I see what I am, then I see who I want to be, who I feel called to be. I know it's attainable, not of myself, not on my own -

I know there would not be a desire unless there was One who enables the dream.

The cry of my heart lately has been the request of Solomon, "Lord, give me wisdom to lead these people you have given me." I love that He does just that. That He loves these little people way more than I ever could. I love that He wants the best for them, for me, for us. I don't understand His ways, often don't understand His words, but I do know that abiding in Him makes me fruit-y and makes the fruit stick. So I wait, I try to listen to His voice telling me how He would parent these 5 beautiful lives full of hope and dreams and destiny...

I have hope...in Him...I have Joy, I have Freedom....I have hope.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Not Quite So Wordless Wednesday

I sat down with the intentions of doing a "wordless wednesday" post, thinking that I could muster the energy to post a couple pics, and that even if I did have the heart to write today, there was a slim-to-none chance that my words would make sense. Then a miracle happened...Kids 1 and 4 are playing nicely in their room (at least I think so - I don't hear any screaming), Kid 4 is sleeping (a rare, but much appreciated, afternoon occurence) Kid 2 is blissfully playing outside with a school friend and Kiddo 5 is snoozing unaware in the swing (O blessed, blessed swing). I even have some potatoes boiling on the stove...thinking some clam chowder might be good. Anyway - so here I am, with no one clamoring for my attention!!!!

It's been a crazy 7 weeks...can't believe it's been that long since God sent Malachi to us...I am SOOO in love with him. He is such a wise soul already - or so it seems. He has these amazing eyes that stare and see and love - wow!

The other kiddos have had different levels of issues when it comes to adjusting, but overall we are doing well. I am amazed and how much more I feel for each of them every day. God is graciously and, yes, gently teaching me to let Him parent through me. I tend to screw up..a lot...every day.

A friend and I were talking about how maybe we could be great parents to one kid, maybe even two. And here we are with me having 5, soon to be 6, and she is raising her 6. What in the world was God thinking? I mean, really, why would He give innocent little people to messed up big ones...really, why?!?!? I've been asking that a lot lately.

It's easy to call our "worthiness" into question, easy to dwell on the mess ups. But here enters grace, grace, grace, grace....man, I love that word...love that concept - would be lost w/out that promise. "He gently leads those with little lambs." How I desperately cling to that on a daily basis!

I feel like a broken blog record...feel like I have posted on this a lot. But, hey, this is my life...this is my "song" right now - one of failure and redemption and fear and hope and lots of amazing little people looking at me and their Daddy to show them the way to our Daddy! What an amazing adventure. What a humbling mandate..."make disciples, raise them to be men and women after My heart! Teach them, show them, lead them, love them...!"

I'm hoping to post more frequently...don't give up on me. We are entering another crazy season of finalizing our adoption - grants, fund raising (look for some opportunities to help us bring "Kate" home...coming soon), praying, travel...etc. I am scared, excited, anxious...it's a weird feeling to miss someone I have never met... but our family feels incomplete w/out her - so excited to see her, meet her, know her!!!