Mt. Hood





We did it! We picked a random weekend to celebrate Mitchel’s 10th birthday and not only did the weather turn out to be fabulous, but we managed to avoid the flu that seemingly everyone has. Thank you Lord! Mt. HoodAt this point (above) we had seriously just scaled a snow wall (practically), and burned ROUGHLY 10,000 calories just to get to the sledding hill we had our eyes on…(several of us were behind the camera slumped over, breathing heavily because we were just a little out of shape!)…only to find out when we got there that there was a MUCH easier (on the calves and behind) path to our hill 🙂 Needless to say, I felt no guilt having all 6 Oreos in my lunch that day.

Mt. Hood-5Mt. Hood on a gorgeous day is beauty waiting to be captured! Mt. Hood-69But enough about beauty, let’s talk sledding/snow boarding! Here he is…Mr. Mitch. Double Digits now. And acting like he’s been snow boarding his whole life. Really…just a few hours. He’s got his daddy’s skills, that’s for sure! Mt. Hood-70And here…well, he’s exhibiting more of his mama’s skills…ha ha!Mt. Hood-39Max, burning snow, if there ever was such a thing! And what is he on, you ask? Tad just happened to fab up this ever so amazing sled…that steers…and has shocks…and a seat made out of a wetsuit. Literally, my husband is amazing. He got most all the materials from Goodwill (snow board, skis, wetsuit..), welded up a frame and waxes up the skis. And it flew!iphoneNote: I am going down the hill on Mitch’s sled (which by the way, the kids all reminded me that the max weight limit was 85lbs…)…and yes, this was my “proverbial mom run”, then it was back to taking pictures and visiting in the lodge with friends. Mt. Hood-52Mt. Hood-19Mt. Hood-47Gotta love this tongue!Mt. Hood-9And though the girls are WAY up in the corner, I had to include it. Makes my heart smile when they are together having fun.Mt. Hood-33So thankful the Rogers could join us for the party! Isn’t Tawnie just too cool?!Mt. Hood-57And Rich…he was certainly burning some snow here!Mt. Hood-73Not sure who Ashley’s going to run in to here…but I’m thinking someone is in her path 🙂Mt. Hood-65The “men”…Mt. Hood-59Dillon, a.k.a, Mr. Cool Beans.Mt. Hood-64Ben. Gotta love that face!Mt. Hood-12Mr. Fala. I told him as he was trudging up the hill that he looked “just like one of the guys from Grumpier Old Men”…sometimes I need a filter over my mouth. But doesn’t he?!iphone-3Some gift giving love up in the lodge.iphone-2And finally a picture of the two of us where we both don’t have marshmallow faces!

We ended the night with pizza and a long drive home…but it was all worth it hearing Mitch tell us, “that was the best birthday EVER”.

“So, is your family complete now?”

Since we’ve adopted little Jo (yes, that’s what has stuck…Jo) we’ve had numerous people ask if we feel our family is complete. If we are “done now”. And for about 3 months I answered, “I think so”. But now Jo is almost 5 months old and the sleep deprivation is gone; I’m thinking sanely again and I must admit…”I doubt it”.

I don’t know what God has planned for our family’s future, but I do know that we won’t be closing our minds or hearts towards more blessings. It’s by no mistake that I’ve recently found We Have Room. Or that I’m still making my way through Love Does, a book all about DOING God’s love, not just speaking God’s love. And it’s by no mistake that somehow I found my way to “liking” a FaceBook page called Second Chance Adoptions {an agency that helps adoptive parents find a new placement for their adopted child for a variety of reasons most of us cannot even begin to imagine}.

I’m not sure what God is up to in our family. There is a girl “out there” and she’s 13 and she needs a home very soon. And when I saw her and read about her I felt strongly that she was supposed to be in our family.

****This is where most people shake their heads, get their senses back and tell the Holy Spirit all kind of rational things.

“We have too many kids already. We don’t make enough to adopt. We have too much debt. Our house isn’t really big enough. When my kids get older, I’ll do something like that. I’d have to get a bigger car.”

I REALLY feel that God doesn’t call us to rational all the time. Maybe not most of the time. Bob Goff says it so well in his book, Love Does. “…if we start RSVPing yes to His invitation and go after those things He’s made us to love. It’s not all planned out for us either, and that’s where most people get too nervous to take the next step. But know this: when Jesus invites us on an adventure, He shapes who we become with what happens along the way.”

To answer your question…yes, we are putting a little manilla envelope in the mail today with notarized signatures and sending it to an adoption agency. And so are 2 other families who also feel called to this girl. We will wait and pray that God places this girl in the perfect home for HER. It may or may not be our home. But we don’t want to close our doors, our hearts to the fact that we have room, we have “goods” to share. We are merely opening up the door to let the Holy Spirit work. And maybe it’s just an act of obedience we are supposed to be experiencing. Not sure. But when you do something “crazy” like this AND have peace…it doesn’t really matter what the outcome. We know God is in control and that’s the way we like it.

1 John 3:17-18But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth”.

James 2:15-16If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit?”

Beauty + Moments



Kayla-3I love taking photographs of people for so many reasons, but I think one of the most satisfying reasons, is that I love to show people their beautiful selves. To cast them in the best light, to coach them on how to look at the camera and then for them to see the pictures and love themselves. That’s huge. For people to love who they are and how God made them uniquely to be.

I do pray that Kayla will love who God made her to be. That she would see the beauty that she is and not wish “her nose was smaller, she lad less zits, her hair was wavier….”. We’ve all been there, right. Some of us have stayed there for many years. Some of us have gained confidence in both God and our own beauty. The truth is, there is so much more to beauty that beautiful pictures, than perfect hair and makeup, and fun clothes. No matter what we look like, we become more beautiful (both to ourselves and to others) when we can love ourselves (not in a narcissistic way) for exactly who God created us to be.


Josie JOY is living up to her name…bringing so much JOY and healing to our home.Josie-7Ruby, who has cried at least once a week for a year and a half after losing Gage, hasn’t cried now for almost 2 months. Praise the Lord! And little Josie adores her big sister and loves giving her big, open-mouth, goobery kisses.

And below…well, this is just how we do dinner every night lately. Jo sits in her Bumbo and watches us, grins at us, makes us all turn into funny-face-making-fools just to get a giggle out of her. I’d say this girl knows exactly what she’s doing…wrapping us all around her adorable little fingers.


Baby sleepingBaby fingers! Oh! Can I just eat them up? Nothing better than having her squeeze my finger with her cute little chubby hand while she’s eating. I’m already mourning the fact that the months are short that she’ll still want to do that….