Monday, May 31, 2010

2010 for KIDS by KIDS bike-a-thon

"The bike-a-thon is very exciting.  Exciting!!  Woo hoo!"

The 2nd annual for KIDS by KIDS bike-a-thon was a huge hit!

Biker participation was about double, bringing eighty children out to bike for child abuse prevention and response.

 There were 150 people in total attendance, up 50% from last year!


We raised a couple hundred dollars more than last year.  Each organization will receive the exact same in impact -- $600!  This little event - hosted by little boys, and attended by their little friends and children within the community - will go a long way, and make a huge impact in the lives of other children all around us.  You raised $1,200!!!

We prayed for sun and no rain, both of which we received.  However, we also received strong, chilly winds.  The end result was more of a bounce-a-thon...  Kids bouncing.  Adults bouncing.  Everyone bouncing and having a wonderful time!

The bike raffle brought in more than $150.  Thanks to Target, WalMart and Bed Bath & Beyond for the donations that made it possible.  And to my friend Pam for the genius idea!

The hot dog stand and impromptu bake sale brought it more than $300.  Thanks to Sonic, HyVee, and Price Chopper for their generous donations.  And thanks to my father-in-law and mother-in-law for slaving over the grill!

Hats off to Kids on a Mission, the Fairchild family, the Shrader boys, and the animal balloon crew.  You kids are really the heart and soul of this event.  We are so honored to know you.  If we could handpick our kids' friends, we'd handpick you over, and over, and over again!!

And to the countless other volunteers...  Thank you!  We couldn't pull this off without your help.  Know that you have made a difference in our community.

Already looking forward to next year...  Brainstorming about how to make it even better!

Monday, May 24, 2010


Time with our precious little friend is winding down.  The last day of school is on Wednesday, and her grandmother will be arriving from Texas some time on Thursday.  So..  Thursday is our last day with Breanna before she moves to Texas, along with her mother and two brothers.

We will miss her a great deal, but are celebrating this opportunity for Breanna's family to reunite and live under one roof again.  This school year has been a wonderful time of learning and growing for Breanna; however, living without her birth family has been confusing and difficult.  She is only six years old and has been so very brave and grown-up...  We pray that this coming season will allow her to be a child again, her mother's child, receiving and knowing what it is to just be a kid who is well-loved and enveloped in her mother's heart and arms.

Knowing Breanna has been a tremendous blessing to our family.  She is such a delightful little girl, with an amazing smile and spunky personality.  We have received so many gifts and learned so many lessons caring for her.  We are so very grateful for our time together.  She may be moving three states away, but she will forever remain in our hearts.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


"We all know what it is to "see the wind."  You begin a new adventure full of hope.  Maybe it's a new job; maybe you're testing an area of spiritual giftedness; maybe you're trying to serve God in a new way.  At the beginning you are full of faith - it's blue skies.  Then reality sets in.  Setbacks.  Opposition.  Unexpected obstacles.  You see the wind.  It should be expected - the world's a pretty stormy place - but somehow trouble still has the power to catch us by surprise."  - If You Want to Walk on Water You've Got to Get Out of the Boat, John Ortberg.

After weeks of random moodiness and unexpected snarky behavior, it all came to a head yesterday as I heard the words "I just don't like him."  They knocked the breath out of me.  Literally.  All I could say was, "I see."  With that, I walked out of the room.  Shocked.  Defeated.  Hopeless.  Furious.

In that moment, my heart was screaming.  The person who said this is not my child, but the "him" being referred to is.  I was hurt, offended and outraged.  I just kept thinking...  The nerve of this little person to talk to me about my child that way!  Especially since my son adores this little friend and the friend rejects him daily.  Not the other way around.  He adores, the friend rejects.

Negativity coursed through my brain...  My dreams of ever fostering or adopting were dashed.  If my mother bear instincts kick in like this with a darling little friend, what kind of bear (monster?) would I be if a really difficult child with significant needs rubbed me the wrong way?  There's no way I could ever be competent, forgiving, loving or patient enough to foster or adopt a child with extra special needs or behavioral issues. 

I'm a little embarrassed to admit it, but I was hurt for about an hour.  During that time, I came to realize a lot of simple, obvious truths regarding this situation.
  • My own children are moody and snarky too.
  • My own children have announced their hatred for one another, only to become best friends again within an hour.
  • It is unfair to everyone involved when I correct all of the children equally; however, only provide consequences for my kids.
  • Establishing a relationship before establishing ground rules and consequences was not my brightest plan.
  • Kids are not born knowing how to be good friends.
  • Patience is a fruit of the spirit, not something we're born with.
So...  We had a little wind damage, but we're working on the repairs.  I'm not getting back into my boat and rowing away from this occasionally stormy situation. 

"Water walkers expect problems." - John Ortberg.

Still trusting God and preparing to be surprised by his trustworthiness.