Friday, February 27, 2015

Home Sweet Home

     I can say how excited I am to have Taylor home, but I don't know if she's excited to be home!  I picked her up last Saturday, hardly recognizing her since her hair was a "hot mess," the exact words from her adult supervisor.  Her hair was everywhere, her eyes were nasty with crud, and her pillow was gifted to Big Bear, and her smile...HUGE!!!  She had an amazing time as you can see from the email below she sent to the family.  I am so happy to have my girl back!

Dear Family and friends,
As most of you know, I went skiing on wednesday through saturday.  I am so excited I went!
For all who didn't get this, I will be sending this to my mother and she will forward this to you.


We got to Junior blind, and I was so excited.  It was amazing because I met a new friend named Sarahi (pronounced like sed-i-E.) Also, I met a boy named Aaron, another girl named Sierra but we called her C.  C., and another girl named Layla (another girl named Alexandra, too!) We played piano for a little bit, then we went to my cabin and hung out.  Then we went to sleep.
 The next day, I had to pack.  Things kept on falling out of my backpack, so they sent someone to help me.  I had a breakfast of cheerios, and then we were off to the slopes!
 When we got there, a guy named Benson took over and took me on the slopes.  We practiced on the easy run, and he started off with the poles.  Then, he let go.  I was skiing and I was going down a hill, and I totally forgot how to slow down.  I was going too fast, so Benson had to slow me down.  Another guy came and walked past me shouting,
    "Speedster!" and it made me laugh.  After a lunch of samwiches and strawberries, we went back.  We went on another route called "Easy Street" and there was this re'y flat part that was painful because we had to shuffle our skis.  It was like mashed potatoes.  In the end, I never fell.
 Later, we had spaghetti (If you liked the sauce, you would have gone crazy for the stuff) served with garlic bread which was re'y good, and oranges, and to finish, a cupcake or a twinky.  Then we watched a movie and played cards, and then we went to sleep.

We woke up and had breakfast.  I had oatmeal biscuit kind of things.  They were pretty good.  Then we went out again.  I had two instructors this time named Hope and Matt.  They took me on "easy Street" again, and this time it was better.  Still, I held my former gloory of not falling.  The first time I went on the chairlift, one of my poles got stuck.  It was funny!
 After a good lunch of hot dogs, great watermellon, and awesome cantalope, we went back out on the most challenging runs that they let kids go on.  It was called "the Learning Curve" and it was re'y steep.
 I still never fell.  It was awesome, I never fell during the whole entire trip.  After watching another movie with audio discription, we played a game of "getto-oono" which meant that we made up rules as we went.  Then we went to sleep.

After packing, we played cards in the car, slept for a little bit, and then came home.  It was a wonderful %trip.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Spreading Her Wings

     "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you." 1 Peter 5:7

     Last night was a tough night for me.  My mom and I dropped Taylor off at Junior Blind of America, an amazing organization that's been around for decades serving the blind.  We have been planning this 3-day ski trip for a couple of months, with Taylor's braille teacher encouraging us to let her try the trip out.  "It'll be great for her independence, Kim."  Since that's been our goal for the last few months, and since Taylor LOVES skiing, we agreed...reluctantly all along.  In fact, I confessed to Mike this morning that I'd signed her up hoping it would fill up before they got to Taylor's name on the list.  Not so...she was in. 
     We've had to put on the "happy, encouraging, dedicated parents, independence builders" faces so Taylor would not know our insecurities, our anxieties, our reservations, literally our fears because that's what they are.  They are OUR fears for our little girl.  It is so stinking scary to let your blind kid experience the world.  No matter what we say, no matter what others say, it's flat-out scary at times.  The key is not letting those fears inhibit your kid from experiencing life and life ABUNDANTLY!!!
     I really got to thinking about how God sees us, His Children.  He wants us to spread our wings and fly too.  He wants us to acknowledge our fears and give them over to Him.  He wants to see us soar.  He wants us to trust and believe everything He says is true which is SOOOO much easier said than done.  I want to trust and believe everything He says is true because in my head I know it is.  I just need my heart to follow and experience that peace that surpasses all understanding. 

"If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself."  2 Timothy 2:13
     Today in my women's Bible study, we sang a familiar song with these lyrics:

I have a maker
He formed my heart,
before even time began
My life was in his hands

He knows my name
He knows my every thought,
He sees each tear that falls
and hears me when I call

I have a father,
he calls me his own
He'll never leave me,
no matter where I go

He knows my name
He knows my every thought
He sees each tear that falls
and hears me when I call

     I nearly wept thinking through each word of this song.  He is hearing me when I am calling out to Him.  He hears Taylor's every call this week.  He is never leaving me, and He is never leaving Taylor.  He is seeing those tears of fear...and tears of pride.  I am so proud of this girl.  I am so proud of both our girls.  It is a blessing to see them grow and face fears head-on.  I am so thankful for the promises in these lyrics for the promises in my faithful God.  (And for 2:00 on Saturday, our pick-up time!!!)

 Sahari, Alex, Taylor, and Leila
Mom, Taylor, and Grandma (Oh so calm...not!)

Thursday, February 12, 2015


     "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."  Romans 12:12
     These last couple of months have given us lots of "Growth Opportunities."  We've seen a lot of family and friends going through so many gigantic hurdles.  Marriages crumbling, relational challenges, health challenges, cancer diagnoses and metastasizing cancer diagnoses,  jobs on the line for no apparent reason, crazy accidents.  Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with what others are going through, I feel like I can't keep it up.  Then I have to stop and realize I CAN'T keep it up. I can't understand why some people are in the middle of what they are going through.  I can't understand it.  I can't figure it out, and I can't fix it.
      When Mike and I say we are praying for you, we ARE PRAYING FOR YOU!!!  We are praying daily for you.  We are crying for you.  We are crying out to God for you.  We are hurting for you.  We are longing for strength, courage, encouragement, truth, peace for you and your family.  We are hoping for you, and in doing so reminding ourselves of the hope we have. A hope that promises all will be righted one day.  It's a hope that helps when nothing make sense.
      It's so hard to watch and feel helpless, but we aren't hopeless!