Saturday, August 11, 2012

An Important Day

Dear Christi:

Happy Anniversary.  Can't believe it's already been 14 years, and yet it's hard to believe it has only been 14 years.  You are such a part of me.  I can't even imagine my life or who I would be without you.  We were talking today and reminiscing a bit.  Although our life right now is challenging, we realized how much more challenging it was in many ways during those early years when we only had a newborn Taylor.  Thank you for your patience with me.  Thank you for being my teammate on this sometimes crazy, sometimes magnificent, always blessed road we are on.  I could not ask for a better companion.

As I look back on the ups and downs we have faced together, I can see how these things have strengthened our relationship.  Our terrifying househunting trip in Tennessee, where we had to get used to smoking restaurants, Dorky Corky's and monsoons.  The "Mormon Minivan Brigade" that brought some peace to our troubled hearts after we lost our little Jacob.  Trips to Hawaii and Mexico.  The first decision to adopt, and then to adopt a special needs daughter.  The second decision to adopt.  The third decision...:)  Getting laid off.  Easter camping with a rather rowdy crew.  Beach trips to the coldest, windiest and most beautiful beaches in the world (the Oregon Coast).  The gradual realization that Elli's disabilities went beyond blindness.  Challenging church callings.  Surgeries.  Myriad trips to multiple hospitals and specialists.  Science projects.  The morning lunch factory.  Flat tire on the way to Vegas.  Arguments over whether or not to someday purchase a Lexus (this came before we were even married and when we had no money whatsoever:).  Coaching baseball.  Coaching basketball.  Coaching more baseball and basketball.  Quitting coaching.  Kids with unbelievable empathy and love and willingness to serve their siblings and parents.  Kids with attitudes.  Sophi.  24 hour flights to China (fairly easy).  24 hour flights home from China, with kids who are still getting used to new parents (not so easy).  Car sick messes in Captain Crunch boxes.  Marathon sunscreen sessions prior to a short trip to the pool.  Lots and lots and lots of Little Caesars.

My wonderful sweetheart, the list could go on forever.  Thank you for all you have done for me and for my children.

I love you,


Dear Tiff:

Happy Birthday.  Still love you.  Still think about you often.  Sorry I broke your little finger!  I always think of you when I pass the Juniper road exit on I-15.  Planned on putting some flowers there when I passed by last week.  Stopped at a middle-of-nowhere gas station to buy something for you.  This was the best I could find.  Somehow, I think you'll understand the thought:)


Your big brother Jeremy

Just look at her smile!

Tonight I thought I'd share another video I came across recently.  A beautiful story.  You know, I just love the scripture from James: "Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this:  To visit the fatherless and the widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world."  It teaches us that among the most basic, core principles of religion-- religion in its purest form-- is caring for the fatherless.  This gives me great comfort during tough days, because I know that while I fall short in so many areas, I am giving my all in this one.  (:

 I know that we are all called in different ways to help the orphans.  Some do ministry work, some send donations to orphanages, some advocate for children to be adopted, some adopt, some help and strengthen families who have adopted (there are certainly so many around us that fit that description!), some give to charities, some give to their churches who support the cause of the orphan, some help the newly adopted child in school and other areas, some lobby for their cause in the political arena, and some simply pray.  All worthy and beautiful and incredible ways to bless children without families.  None better than another-- we all serve in different ways for different reasons and at different times.  And I just pray that as followers of Christ,  we are doing something.

Because their cause is real.

It isn't make believe that there are millions of children out there that do not know the love of a family.  And I think, I know, that if more people were willing to at least consider how they could help, that some of them might be surprised to find that it is their call to adopt, and more of these precious children of God would come HOME.

Journey To Eliana from The Archibald Project on Vimeo.