Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Day I Killed Santa

My friend Jen Hatmaker has the BEST blog posts. (And by friend, I kinda mean, like, I know her. Like, she's an adoption mommy friend. Or really, like, she kinda posts on our yahoo group board occasionally and I follow her on facebook. So kinda like she has no clue who I may be. But hey, I'm still callin friend rights.)

SO, my friend Jen posted the following post a couple weeks back that immediately went viral and was reposted, retweeted, and read outloud on media outlets across the country.

The Christmas Conundrum

And it made me think, really think - what have we done right, or wrong in bringing our brood up to celebrate the season correctly? or incorrectly?

So the afternoon of me reading the above post about the cons of creating the god-image of Santa Claus --- who often trumps our kid's own God-image of the Christ child and his reason for coming on that night 2000 years ago --- my littlest angel says to me:

"Mommy, is there, or is there not a real Santa Claus??? Tell me the troof. Cause JoJo says there is a Santa Claus and Nicky says there is not!"

And at that moment I had a decision to make -
1) lie to my child, or bend the 'troof' again or
2) take this newfound wisdom and run with it. So I ran.

"Well honey, many, many years ago there was a man named Nickolas. And he loved Jesus SOOOO much that he would make and give presents to children on Jesus' birthday because he loved him so much."

Angel - "So the Santa at the mall is not real?"

"No, the Santa at the mall is just a man who is dressed up and is pretending to be that man who lived so long ago, because he was such a good man....... and loved Jesus so much"

Angel - "So that man lived a long, long, long time ago??"

"Yes Baby. He lived a long, long time ago."

Angel (in an octave and volume slightly higher than a 757 engine -
"SO SANTA IS DEAD!!!!!???!!!!!!!!!!!!!???!!!!!!!!!!!!"

aye-ya-ya. So that my friends, is how to gently kill Santa. Feel free to take notes if needed. The cost of later therapy is entirely your responsibility. Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Demon Chickens

(I bet you clicked on the link just to see where I was going with this didn't you ???)

My eldest son is extremely artistic.
Like, better-than-his-mom, artistic. Which I am completely ok with.
About a year ago, he gave his dad this egg he had made at school that
never fails to make me giggle. I leave it in our car, just so on bad
days, I can put the visor down and smile at the silly. Here ya go, I
present to you - the Demon Chicken:

So it seems we have made the chicken mad. We've kinda known the chicken was mad. Maybe it was the way we
started loosing friends in really random, weird ways. Like the WEEK we
decided to adopt. Maybe it was the way weird things started making us
have to leave churches we loved. (loose a church? loose your prayer
support, your spiritual support, your emotional support) Maybe it was
the way Tony kept loosing jobs. Maybe it was the way things started
breaking and money owed started piling up. Or health scares. Or the
lies whispered that made us doubt. But yes, I think we have definitely
made the chicken mad. And yes, I think he has bit us, kicked us, and
thrown us to the ground. More in the last two weeks than ever. And I'm
getting sick of it.

1 Peter 5:8
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around
like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

And as I read somewhere recently - lions don't look for the big
kill. They look for the straggler, the weak, the small. They are
chickens. They don't go head to head usually with the big bull
elephant. They go after the little, the innocent, the weak, the
helpless. They usually go after the young.
It's the same with the enemy. He goes after the children. The helpless.
All over the world, there are little ones who are being picked on:
Stolen. Sold into slavery. Suffering from poverty. Dying. Prostituted.

But adoption is God's plan to thwart that. Those children who otherwise
would fall prey to the enemy are led by God to a safe place. A place
where they are loved. A place where they are taught to love HIM. A
place where their story is used to show others God's miracles and God's

And the chicken hates that. So he tries to stop it. Again, and again,
and again.

It would boggle your mind if I had every adoptive parent list every
weird or strange thing that has happen to them since they decided to
adopt. It's not in our heads. It is an attack. And it is on us, so that
we will back out, and leave the little ones prey to his cowardly

But being pecked at isn't fun. It isn't pleasant or funny. It is real.

BUT - my God is bigger. And HE is stronger. And HIS angels are around
my daughter, and around us. BUT the battle, while raging above and
around us, we know who wins ultimately. And that makes me so much
stronger, and more angry, and a little more ticked off at the attacks,
and will help to sustain me until we have her home in our arms.

Silly demon chicken.

Psalm 138: 7-8
"Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you preserve my life; you
stretch out your hand against the anger of my foes, with your right
hand you save me. The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O Lord, endures forever - do not abandon the works of your hands."

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Beans, beans, good for the heart....

For those of you who haven't been following me for as long, I will always lovingly refer to Amy of "Building the Blocks" as my 'pickle jar lady'.

You see, Amy had just started her own adoption (her 4th!) a week or so before us and had set aside a pickle jar for her family to contribute their loose change to. Just a symbol - "God, we've got it started, we're going to work towards the goal, but we know you can fill it.." A couple days later, their pickle jar was running over as their entire adoption was generously donated by a spirit-led donor. So what did our family do? We put out a pickle jar of course!!!

Now our jar (which is actually a juice jug, but let's not split hairs) - hasn't been filled in one day, but I can say, over the last 2 years, God has put more change in that money jar than we ever could have been able to do on our own. Every penny has come from him. And so far, every penny we have needed, he has provided, on time and in the amount needed.

But back to my pickle jar lady.... Last year, I read this post. Amy and her family had sworn to eat beans and rice for dinner every day for a MONTH and then donate the money saved toward their 'pay it forward' adoption fund for another family. I was floored by not only the simplicity of their idea but the lesson that was being taught to their children. The majority of the children in this world will have one meal a day, if that, of the same ingredients. And our children throw away food on a daily basis... or snub their noses or whine and say 'I don't liiiiike this...'.

And while I LOVED the idea, I could only go for one night of a lesson, cause I'm all chicken and didn't want to deal with the recourse of a houseful of 3 men and a month of beans.. (although now that Addison has gotten older - I think I am seriously more afraid of her 'reaction' than the boys. Sister can put up a stank).

BUT, another year of live and learn and I'm all in on the wild side of educating my children now. (says the lady set on taking 3 under 12's on a total of 36 hours plane ride to a 3rd world country..)

SO, our church's children's program is trying to raise money to build a well in Africa and instantly, I fell in love with our new church. How cool is that!! So as the end of the year grows near and their goal is still $3000 away - we were challenged to think of new and creative ways to raise money. So my mind goes back to the beans and rice challenge - and I think I'm ready to put the clothespin on and take it for a spin.

So instead of going on my Sunday afternoon shopping trip for groceries, this week I'm going to just rest my amateur couponing skills and go get a couple more bags of beans and rice.. ( and possibly a cheap rice cooker since Tony claims rice is the only food I am inept at cooking correctly). Usually we spend around $120 for groceries in addition to money a couple times a week or so eating out. So we'll donate that amount of money to help bring children clean water.

I'll let you know how it goes. While I have high expectations -- my family may think the idea stinks quite a bit (and they might be right) - but in the process, I'm hoping their little hearts can be broken just a little bit more through the experience. Beans, beans, good for the heart......