Saturday, November 10, 2007

This is it!

This is it~ the day we've all been waiting for! I pray that in about 2 hours time I can bring this blog 'live' for all to see. I'm waiting for Hubby to hit U.S. soil & call to tell me they've touched down- safe and sound. It won't be until tonight that they will arrive to our local airport (8 hours left until our union!)- I'll be happy though when he calls and says they've all made it to the good ole' USA. As soon as that phone rings, I'm going to go backwards and post everything I've written about this journey.

Seems we keep getting thrown curve balls- and it doesn't seem to be over yet. Yesterday, about the time hubby was supposed to be leaving Liberia, I got a frantic phone call. Hubby was on the other end telling me the airline couldn't find one of our children's flight reservation. He said they were boarding the plane and were holding it for a short time while they searched for the missing reservation. Hubby was upset, I was upset- "How much more do we have to endure," I thought?

I scrambled to find our credit card, thinking we may have to buy another ticket just for him to make the flight out- Hubby wanted on that flight! The phone he was borrowing (some kind man in the airport loaned him a cellphone to call me) ran out of minutes and we lost each other. I called hubby's parents for a second credit card just in case there was a problem with ours... I was ready for anything.... I tried to call the cell phone number back and couldn't get through...

I tried 4 times and finally the man answered. I said, "Hello, my husband just used your phone at the airport, is he near you that I could speak with him?" The man asked me to wait a moment and I could hear him running. Finally he said, "Here, it's your wife on the line." I heard hubby's voice again and I could hear genuine despair. We waited in silence for minutes as hubby waited at the ticket counter for them to find our child's reservation or issue a new ticket. I prayed. Hubby prayed.

In a moment- I heard hubby say, "Praise God! We're on the jet plane, they found it, we're on the plane!" I told him I loved him, hubby said he loved me & our connection was gone.

I've been sitting here now for almost 24 hours, praying that the flight out of Liberia went well and the connecting flight into the U.S. went well. I haven't heard from him- I'm waiting for the phone to ring...waiting to hear his voice that everything and everyone is ok.

My faith has been pushed to the edge, my nerves have been stretched thin- I discovered this morning that I have lost 10 pounds in the last 2 weeks. I've tried to rest knowing that the real 'show' starts today. I know that hubby will be exhausted and I'll have to 'pick up the ball and run with it' once everyone is home. I had grand ambitions of doing tons of projects during the last two weeks and about half of them are completed. I rested every day- mostly because I was exhausted and didn't have a choice. I've gone to bed early and let my body rest even if I was awake and my mind was racing. I've prayed more in the last two weeks than at any point in my life or during this journey. I've woken up and realized I was praying in my sleep many times throughout the last 2 weeks.

It's lunch time now and I'm going to fix some food for the little ones. My stomach is tied in knots with butterflies flitting all around. I will try to eat a little again tonight before we leave for the airport. I'm counting the hours...this is a milestone, a BIG milestone in our lives. Our wedding day was big, the birth of all 3 children was big & now we are officially mama and daddy to 4 more blessings. What an awesome gift, what a miracle, what an answer to prayer!

I hope to be back tomorrow with a picture or two from the airport union! I can't wait to see hubby, I miss him horribly. He is truly my other half, without him I have been lost. I love you, sweetheart!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Please go backwards

Just to be sure you catch everything, please 'go backwards' in the posts to see what you've missed since we shut down the blog a few months ago. I'm currently going through every post ever written and re-posting them for everyone to see. Some posts are being edited slightly, some sensitive material has been removed...but none the less, I'm bringing back all the important stuff. Please check back now and again as this process will take me a few days-~there's lots of posts to re-read!

Here is a picture of the morning hubby left for Liberia. Dear Son #3 wasn't very happy (as I'm sure you can see in the photo). This was our last moments of being a family of 5~ our lives are now changed forever! I can't wait to come back in a few days and post a picture of ALL of us for you to see- our new family of 9!

Also, this is a picture of Halloween. I took the 3 children to our church where we went on a hayride and went door to door, trick-or-treating. We have two 'farmer girls' and one pirate. What you can't see is that both girls have on pink cowgirl boots. Daddy is gonna laugh when he sees this picture. It's the day after he left for Liberia...

Liberia update

I am so excited to bring this blog back 'live' in only 2 short days! I just heard from Hubby- he has our children's 4 visas in hand at this exact moment! PRAISE GOD!!!

All went well & he has all the documents he needs to bring back here to the states- all passports, visas & airplane reservations. Now hubby and the kids are headed to the street vendors/market to purchase some African clothes for everyone (us included!) and hopefully buy an African drum/djembe.

I'm walking around here like a zombie this morning. I have no idea what to do first. My mind is just racing- jumping from one thing to the next. I can't keep a thought in my head for more than a minute. There are a few things I need to do before everyone gets home on Saturday night- more laundry to finish and put away, clean all the bathrooms again, make 5 more loaves of bread, finish the boys duvet covers for the bunkbeds, etc. I have plenty of time to do this...but for some reason I feel so overwhelmed & can't even think of a starting point. The most important thing is that hubby gets home safely with the kids- the laundry will wait, the duvet covers will wait, the bathrooms can get cleaned again after everyone is home & the bread can be made as we need it instead of ahead of time.

I've been focusing on resting the entire time hubby has been gone. I have been physically exhausted since the day after he left. I'm lucky to make it to 10pm most nights- I'm usually a night owl and can go to midnight/1am with no problems! I've been going to bed early every night and have been taking short naps most days when the baby lays down. I think I've narrowed it down to being emotionally exhausted- and I'm not the one in Liberia! :) to start some of these chores so I can get some stuff done before lunch. My energy starts to dwindle in the afternoon hours. Two more days and counting...

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Our 'new' family motto

As I spoke with hubby in Liberia yesterday, he was telling me the events of the day. He said a certain phrase that really stuck out to me. It's a phrase I've said over and over to Dear Son #1~ especially during the past year. Without hubby knowing it, he told the kids this particular phrase during a very tense moment. He instructed them to pray that God would show favor on us & he said:

"I will do everything humanly possible- I WILL NOT GIVE UP ON YOU!"

I think this phrase just became our new family motto: I WILL NOT GIVE UP!

Praise You In This Storm

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The 'WOW' factor this is going to take awhile- so sit back & get comfy...

I told you yesterday that we've come across 'enemy fire' with the paperwork/red-tape in trying to get our kids home. When I finally went to bed last night, it didn't look good (in my eyes). There were so many things against us and it could have been one of the worst nights ever- especially because hubby wasn't here by my side! I played scenario after scenario over in my mind, trying to come up with something to 'do.' I prayed, "God, what is going on? What are you doing?" The song 'Praise You In This Storm' came to mind- so I played it over and over, cried, sang & cried some more. I praised Him in the storm. I told Him I would follow Him wherever He led. I told Him I would go 'there' even if I didn't want to. I told Him I would try to be happy if the outcome went the way I didn't want it to. I asked Him to help my heart be ok with His decision. I gave 'it' over and over to Him until I felt the weight leave me. I finally was able to sleep.

At 4am the phone rang. It was hubby needing help with info. on some of the forms he was filling out. I told him I was really struggling and I was having a hard time coping. Hubby told me it was going to be ok, that he had a good feeling about the day. He said that the meeting was 'going to go well.' He just knew it....

It took me about an hour to fall back to sleep. 30 minutes after falling asleep, the kids woke up (still having trouble with the time change). I watched the clock knowing that any moment hubby would be going into his meeting. This was it. The meeting determined if the kids were coming with him or if hubby was coming home alone.

I got a couple of phone calls during that time. I made polite conversation & quickly got off the phone as I was waiting for hubby to call and tell me how the meeting went. 30 minutes before the office closed in Liberia (where hubby was having his meeting), I got an important phone call. This call was orchestrated by God. God came in at the END of the 11th hour and moved His mighty hand! The person on the other end of the line was able to help us. That 'person' called another 'person' who was able to help hubby. God moved in moments- all the way to the other side of the world! I waited to hear the outcome....

5 minutes before the Liberian office closed, I got a return phone call telling me the outcome. I held my breath. The news was good- all 4 children WILL be coming home with hubby. As sure as I am sitting here, God performed yet another miracle today! I will not by any means tell you this has happened by our own doing, it has happened ONLY by the hand of God. We do and will always give Him 100% of the credit for this miracle.

I hung up the phone and I cried. I wept from the depths of my soul. I thanked God in my heart for what He had just done (I couldn't form words at that point)- when I got to the point of actually breathing again- I was able to voice my thankfulness to Him.

I called a close friend and told her what God had just done. I waited for hubby to call me... When he called about 20 minutes later, I told him I knew what happened already. He said, "How do you know?" I simply said, "God just worked a miracle!" We shared our experiences back and forth about what just happened in the last hour, said we loved each other & hung up the phone before his cell phone battery went dead.

Dear daughter #3 came in the room and asked if I had been crying. She looked nervous so I explained to her that I was 'happy-sad.' That's been a term in our house for many years... 'happy-sad' just means that mommy is crying because I'm happy. I might look like I'm sad because I'm crying, but really they are happy tears. I told her that everything is ok and that I was just happy because everything is ok with daddy and that all her brothers and sisters were coming home together with daddy.

It was lunch time & I was so 'fried' that I couldn't even form thoughts to make lunch. I told the kids that God did another awesome thing today that we were going to celebrate God and go have a 'treat lunch.' In our house, treat lunch means a trip to McDonalds or some fast food restaurant. We try very hard not to eat out much (we are trying to eat healthy) so it's a real treat when we do. On the way to town, dear daughter #3 said, "It's so awesome what God did today, it's kinda like that song." She began to sing:
'He's got the whole world in His hands, he's got the whole wide world in His hands....'

That's right, baby-cakes. God has the whole world in His hands & today He showed us once again just how easy it is for Him to work in this world. It feels big to us but NOTHING is too big for God. Amen to that!

Monday, November 05, 2007


Hubby has been in Liberia for just about a week- today is Nov. 5th. It has been a tough day- I went through about 4-5 hours of turmoil. Digging out paperwork, looking over forms- clarifying things for hubby. We should be used to the bumps along in this journey, why did I think the coast was clear? We've encountered MORE difficulties in Liberia with paperwork. Without giving too many details, I can say however that we've come across 'enemy fire.' Whew-- talk about a battle! The details of the day have taken all the wind out of my sail. I'm holding tight to God's promises to me & I'm just left wondering how this is all going to play out.

So, in light of all the craziness- I'm going to make a list for some of the things I am grateful for to keep my priorities straight:

~God has been in this marathon since the beginning and it isn't over yet!
~Hubby made it to Liberia (3 airplanes later) safely & has been safe in country since arriving.
~The children are all together & have been with hubby 24/7 since he arrived. They have been spending time together every day & have been doing lots of bonding during this time!
~The requirements we must complete are attainable and there is no major hang up regarding the children or the possibility of bringing them home. They will come home, it may just take a bit longer.
~Once they're home, they're home. This part of the journey will be behind us and what we've endured will seem like such a short amount of time. Just a blip on the radar....
~Hubby is coming home, we miss him terribly!
~Surely I can find 'something' to do with this spare time.... after all, I've just been sitting around with nothing to do but wait! Yea right.... hehe