Forever Our Joshua

This week we celebrated my favorite day in July...Joshua's Forever Family Day!

He was so excited and kept saying, "It's my family day!"

It was a super full day (super is one of Joshua's favorite words...usually used 2 or 3 times in succession when he's really excited!).

The morning began with a home visit with our social worker for Sophie Joy's home study. Then we headed off to a celebratory lunch at Joshua's choice, Chick Fil A!  

Everyone was very excited to not only go...

Not the best panoramic in the world!

 but to also have ice cream!

The evening was filled with VBS, which I think Joshua wishes was an everyday, year round thing.  He has been sooooo excited!  The little kids were often allowed to come up on stage and help lead the worship songs and Joshua loved the opportunity.  He is our little entertainer, for sure!

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Joshua is in the tie-dye shirt in the center turned around trying to figure out what to do!  

Joshua smiling in his seat (center).  
Emma in the background (center, orange shirt)

Lily attending VBS...all week!  This is a MAJOR, BIG deal for her!  Maybe she'll go to Sunday School now?  Doubtful!

Joshua has grown so much this year!  He is our thankful, happy, helpful boy.  A neighbor of ours who is recovering from knee surgery told us a few weeks ago that he wanted to knock on our door just so he could have Joshua come and smile at him!

 He loves homeschool (he asks me almost everyday of the summer if we will do school today!).  Colors, counting, listening to stories, pattern blocks, geoboards, sensory play, alphabet themed weeks. You name it he loved it.  Except for a few crafts.  "I don't like crafts, Mama." he's told me more than once.  Unless it involves paint!

He still loves anything involving a ball and is definitely an enthusiastic fan of all things sport...football, soccer (Yes, he loved the World Cup and he and Lily played it in our family room.  He said he was Argentina.  Lily picked the US.), hockey, and (I can barely bring myself to say it) baseball.

His legs have been cast free and he walks so well.  He can run, ride a scooter, pedal a trike, kick a ball...hard!  

Joshua brings fun and laughter into our lives!   Words can't do justice to the blessing he is to our family and how incredibly awed we are to be his family!

In Him,



Yard Sale for Sophie Joy

Yesterday we had our second yard sale for Sophie Joy.  

 The first was under the radar because we hadn't announced her adoption yet.   

But this one!   This one I could welcome each customer with the words,  "Welcome to our adoption fundraiser yard sale!   All prices are make me an offer! "  Joshua would often loudly announce her name after I gave the spiel.  

We were able to raise a little less than $200 and were so thankful to our friends from church who donated a trailer full of yard sale items.

The Lord reminded me before we even got Sophie's file, that even though we don't have the money for the adoption fees, He does.  He owns the cattle on a thousand hills, He said, and He would sell a few.  Money is no mountain for Him.  Seems like it to us!  But, it must be a mirage, because if He is leading, guiding...He must also be providing.  We are watching Him begin to bring in that provision.



I could keep updating on past birthdays and various other events, but I simply can't wait to share the NEWEST news any longer.

The Lord is growing our family!

He has brought us another daughter!  She will be 3 in August and currently lives in Henan, China.  She is beautiful, adorable, precious...beyond description and we can't wait to have her home with us!

To read her full story, email me at:  kevmandy @ msn.com

Unfortunately, due to some current restrictions we will be unable to share her picture on the internet for some time.  Don't worry!  As soon as I can, I will!  And, if you see me in person, I'd be overjoyed to show you her sweet face

Until then, her name is Sophie Joy!

Rejoicing in Him,


More Catching Up

So, Aaron has gotten married and moved to Guam!

In the days following Aaron's wedding, another announcement changed the way we look at the days ahead.

After many months of decreasing mobility, doctors gave my sweet Daddy the diagnosis of ALS (more commonly known as Lou Gherig's disease).

We have all been adjusting to this diagnosis and learning a changing normal.  The Lord never leaves us without blessing and this has been the case with this as well!

I have been blessed to get to spend at least a week every other month with my parents in Orlando!  This is more time...and often adult only time (kids at home)...than we have had in ages!

The Lord has blessed my parents through the VA so that all of my dad's changing needs are being met...including a powerchair and beautiful wheelchair accessible van.

And, just a few weeks ago Lily and Joshua and Grandpa got to take powerchair walks (rides!) when we visited the in Florida!  

Unfortunately, I took very few pictures when we were there a week ago, but here they are...

In Him,


Flip Flop Feet

Today we began what is becoming an annual summertime tradition. Getting a new leg for Lily.
This year her sisters requested that she get a Flip Flop foot. That means there would have to be a space between the big toe  and the toe next to it. Obvious. But not something most of us think much about!
Mr Don, our prosthetist, was successful in finding the smallest flip flop made!
And here's a picture from the other day just for fun!! What sweeties!