Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Oh my goodness, SNOW! My hubby snowplowed before he went to work and now again when he got home. Thank goodness it is that beautiful, shiny, fluffy, light snow. I went out to shovel the steps...and put down a little salt. The snow was calling me! I felt like Kristina and wanted to jump in. Now my little girl is making snow angels on the carpet. Desperate isn't she! :) Tomorrow is supposed to be colder..but if just her eyes are showing, then I will send her out..maybe?
I took some pictures today with all the snow..
Picture in the back yard...one of my favorite views out a kitchen window.This is another of my favorites..
Hubby with the snow blower! :) My man!
All done...Yea! (isn't he cute?) :)

His timing was perfect! Supper was done right when he was! Good man! :)

Monday, December 29, 2008

My baby girl...

I have often wondered what Kristina looked like as a baby. She was so little when we brought her home. Just had turned four. What a little peanut she was. Now, she is very much not a baby! :( Her height and weight have shot up since coming home!! Pretty soon she will be taller then me! :) I am thankful that she still loves to be held and cuddled! :)

This morning I was still in bed when she got up. I had such a hard time sleeping...praying and crying..concerned about my great uncle, so I was a wee bit tired this morning. Anyway, she came in a crawled up and asked how my heart was..put her head to my chest and listened then she said "your heart will be okay". I thanked God for her and her love that He gives her to share!

Here is a picture that I took and it so looked like a little baby swaddled in a blanket. She loves blankets and is always cuddling with them. This was too precious not to share.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


It sure has been a busy and emotional week. We remember this past week to mark the birth of our Lord and Savior! Came to earth as a babe..a beautiful wonderful birth. A gift from God. How exciting!!

Then there is life, what kind of life? That depends on lots of things..too many to mention. Like where you live on earth is a prime example. In the last several days, I have thought about it a LOT. What is important to me..really? Deep down inside. I am thankful for my relationship with God, and my family! That is what is important to me! Everything else doesn't matter. Nothing...not my "treasures" (cuz I know I can't take them with me!), NOTHING! (our desire to adopt Jovan is in the family category!!) Although, he truly is a treasure... :)

Death is final...the end. My great uncle was hospitalized on the twenty third. Had no clue that he would have to stay in. He just came home this afternoon. We were told that he has like seven to ten days to live. What a blow! I know that there are people out there who have lost loved ones suddenly..and some that have suffered for a long time. It can be very emotional when you know those people outside of your family...but when they are your family...uffda! He and I are especially close...kinda like grandpa/father rolled in one. We just clicked. My daughter and he are the same way. God is so good that way! Neither he nor my grandmother want to go to a nursing home. He is having care provided to him in his own home. I have cried some...but have been closed to the emotional part, because I don't think that I could get done what I need to do in such a short time span. Uffda again...what can I say...Christmas was a blur, I'll post on that later...I have a few pictures..need to remember the positive! :) And I will!

I should have also written after death..after you die and have been adopted by God. (accepted Christ as your own savior) Then you can be singing with the angels! That is how I am going to remember my great uncle..singing with the angels!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Sound and Smell...

The other day, I went out to "potty" the boys and I heard the crunch of the snow under my feet. When I came in and hung up my jacket, I smelled the cold fresh air smell! Oh, how wonderful that was!! Brought back memories of playing in the snow..sliding, building snowmen, making snow angels. Wait that was just last year... :)

It has been SO cold that we have not gone out yet to play in the snow. We slide down our "hill", it is what I call the sewer mound. Don't know what it's called..we have our own septic system. It is just enough..but we are within walking distance of a HUGE hill. This year we will have older cousins to play with..they are young so climbing up the hill will be a breeze!

Gotta go, going to visit grandma and grandpa! Everything else takes a back seat for Kristina when she gets to visit her grandparents.

Friday, December 19, 2008


I ran a few errands in town...boy, with the sun shining it sure does a body good! Freedom...of course I had my daughter..but it felt like I had the wind blowing through my hair. Maybe, I need to get out more? :)
To be thankful that I have a daughter, a working husband, and all of the material things that I probably don't need. And to be a child of God! Of course that is the top thankful thing!

One of my errands was to our local Christian bookstore. I wanted to get those little name cards for the kids stockings. My mom thought that we would have stockings for the kids this year. My mom has never had us have stockings growing up. So we'll see what happens...

My daughter just came out of her room looking like this...I heard this jumping and went to see, and this is what came down the hallway. She absolutely LOVES horses! (where that is from, who knows) I found the horse and had to get it for her...and of course it's pink! :) It makes a galloping sound when you squeeze its ear. Kristina is such a joy...she makes a happy heart for everyone she smiles at! Especially her mommy and daddy! Daddy comes home early on Friday, so it's fun when we get the extra time with him!! Did I ever say that I love that man? :) Pretty sure I have.

Calvin Michael is whining to get held...he even made his voice go lower like he was really mad! Cute! He loves to cuddle! Then Cooper Maxwell wants attention too. Can I say our dogs are spoiled? Cooper is on the arm of the couch and Calvin is on the pillows. Kristina is bringing them up out of their room. She loves them and loves to cuddle with them as well. Better go get things in order before hubby comes home...love him!! :)


Definition of sauerkraut is: Chopped or shredded cabbage salted and in its own juice.

Sauerkraut in German means "sour cabbage" Chinese cooks were also pickling cabbage in wine. Genghis Khan substituted salt for the wine and carried this version of sauerkraut to the edge of Eastern Europe. Many Europeans cultures believe it is good luck to eat sauerkraut on New Year's and other family celebrations. In 1776 was the first time that sauerkraut was mentioned in American English. Very popular with the Dutch settlers.

I found stats that say 2 out of 3 Americans eat in on a regular basis which comes to about 1.5 pounds a year. Germans eat about 3.74 pounds a year.

Sauerkraut is also good for you.
A one cup serving has:
32 calories
No fat or cholesterol
4 grams fiber
35% daily requirements of Vt C
102% daily requirements of Vt K
12% Iron
Plus Vt B6, foliate, calcium, potassium, and copper

There are many other facts..these are just a few I found.

You ask "why sauerkraut", well yesterday my grandmother and I finally got around to finishing our sauerkraut perogies. We made more filling. And so while working I was thinking about how long I have been eating it. My guess is at a very early age. So maybe 35 years or so. LOVE the stuff!!! Can eat it right out of the bag, hot or cold, with onions or not, on a brat, with fried potatoes, and now my favorite is eating it with my scrambled eggs. Yummmy!!

When preparing sauerkraut for the perogies, you have to boil it to make it soft. Then it gets cut up, cooked with some onions salt and pepper. And you're ready to make the dough and stuff them. Here is a picture I found online. Doesn't that look really yummy? Oh, Kristina like it too. She has been eating it since coming home to the US. I doubt that they fed it to the kids in the orphanage. :) Well, she is ready to start the day...and I am going to eat some with my eggs!! :)

Glad I posted, hee hee

Forgot to say I love sausage pizza with sauerkraut! I think that there are lots of people that like sauerkraut on their pizza. I thoroughly enjoyed my scrambled eggs and sauerkraut! :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Something to think about...

I was thinking about this the other day and wondered about the snow...and how much there was. And I was just amazed at the fact that they were ALL different. Everywhere and any time that it snows. Blows my mind... God made each one different, each and every one. How creative! He made all of us different too. Every man, woman and child! God is so good!! And I am sooo thankful!

Here is another thing. God gave his one and only son to die for us, so that we may live if we accept him into our hearts! Which child could you give up to do that for us? When I look at Kristina I can't even imagine giving her up. This is the season of giving..Jesus was born and we celebrate his birth! He has a birthday..and His purpose in life was to die for us. Heavy thinking, I know but it is important to think about. Doesn't matter who you are, where you live, how much money you have, how educated you are, how many kids you have, how many treasures you have, (after all you can't take it with you when you die), how you have acted or what you have done in life, (good or bad), and many more...

In the Bible in my study notes I found this. John means "the Lord is gracious", and Jesus means the Lord saves"Both names were given by God, not chosen by human parents. Throughout the Bible God acts graciously to save His people. He will not withhold salvation from anyone who sincerely comes to Him. Pretty powerful stuff.

For me I in awe of how God does things. God answers prayer in His own way and His own time. And He just is.. I love Him for that...He takes care of me and loves me. Cool Beans....

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Just a little something...

I was thinking about John last night and this morning. It is a little emotional as I know other families have heard that if they are committed they can continue to adopt. Which don't get me wrong, I am SO very much thankful to God for that!!!! But, the human side just has a harder time then the much bigger side just is waiting and having faith. Maybe not so much nervous, but praying that I will be able to grasp the peace that God will offer to me. I sound so much like a person with a tiny amount of faith. I don't mean to, but I have my days.

We have not yet heard specifically about our adoption of our son...he will be forever!! I pray earnestly that he will have a mommy and a papa soon!! His spirit is so strong..I pray that will continue for the rest of his life!! So, if you think of Jovan and myself say a little prayer for us...

First about the snow...There is about 4ish inches, not much. Well maybe a little more. And Kristina absolutely LOVES it. I could not get her in on Sunday. We missed going to church, but the roads were so icy and snow covered that we decided to stay home. My hubby had to take out the snow blower to remove the snow. He did that in the afternoon. Meanwhile, my little girl wanted to go outside in "her" snow! It was kinda cold..colder then the day before, but I let her go out. Couldn't get her in...she begged to be outside. The only thing that you could see was her eyes and I did a body check to see if she was feeling cold anywhere. She was not..so I let her out again for a little while.

We ended up going to my parents to help my dad remove the snow. He hasn't recovered fully from the big flu we all had, so we thought best to help him. Bundled up Kristina again, and headed out. She had a blast making snow angels, throwing snow at mommy and daddy. Playing with my parent's dachshund, Muffin. Then she snuck inside to see what grandma was doing. We then went home and mommy made homemade pizza. First time doing that..and it was great fun and it tasted really good for Sunday night pizza.

Next the cold...it got really cold after the snow, sleet came. The same day after we came back from my parents it got really cold! Not as cold as the states just westish from us..but cold. The dogs barely went past the door to go potty. :) And come in shivering! When the sun came up, it didn't look that cold, just a very pretty day. My husband waited for daylight after he worked on the drifted snow..to make sure he could see the road really well. It is still very cold...I do not want to venture into town (three miles away) to get a couple of things. Burrrr!

And lastly the cookies...I do not really bake. Do I Jamey? :) It just takes to long to see the end product. But I have been using my Christmas present from a couple of years ago. A big stand mixer. That makes a difference to me. Like having a helper. I love making spritz cookies however!! And I need to make rosettes..my grandmother's always made those and now since I am learning all of her secrets, I needed to learn that as well. We do a traditional Ukrainian Christmas. And of course we have to have lefse(sp) for my hubby and his Norwegian heritage. We do NOT have leutifisk(sp) though!! Tried it once and thought I died afterwards!!! So today we will make some cookies and bars. I have a cookbook that uses cake mixes for cookies. (yes, I need all the help I can get!) And also I have the cold in a package sugar cookies...have several recipes using those as well! :)

I need to get breakfast as my daughter is almost done with her treatment...that usually taked almost an hour, but this morning she is watching her favorite..the Doodlebops! :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

My Second Butterfly...

I think and pray everyday, many many times a day for him. He is growing up without a mother and a papa! God has him, I know and that is the best place to be! But, he does not have a mommy and a papa to call his own.

To me to have a son would be so wonderful...mommy's little boy. First of all to teach him about God and His son! Then to teach him to be a loving, kind, and generous person. To allow him to grow and play outside of an orphanage. Please understand that where he is at is a fine place, they take good care of the children..

Sometimes, I get discouraged..trying not to give up hope to be allowed to get him. It just feels like he is ours and he has gone away for way too long. Like summer camp.. My heart hurt again the other day very, very much!! I told my mom that he needed to come home now, it's been too long. God is in control, and His will be done...we will wait patiently..
My First Butterfly...

I am going to blog about my beautiful daughter! She is amazing! Yesterday I was so overcome with love and happiness that God blessed her with us that I cried! My heart was so full of love, it was amazing! She is so kind and loving to people. Her smile lights up the room, her giggle fills it up! Gentleness is also part of her. Of course she is five and she also is learning to be disciplined as well. :) Her spirit is strong.. as are her muscles! :)

The other day she brought laundry up a flight of stairs from the laundry room. She did that without me telling/asking her to. That is where her muscles come in handy. :) She sets the table, clears the table, loads the dishwasher, and can make her own toast. Vacuuming is something that she loves to do. She says "I got it, I got it" when I try. And she cleans her room and makes her bed. I don't know if that is typical for a five year old or not?

By the way, I don't want to sound like I am bragging, boasting or anything like that! I am just so awed by her willingness and love to help me that it makes me cry! But, on the other hand I think that it is okay that she does some things..because she is learning to be responsible. She does not "work" of course everyday..

What things my daughter loves, to play house, color, play in any water, doing school, playing with the dogs, riding her bike, digging in dirt, swinging of course! Many others but those are her favorites! I missed shoveling snow and playing in it. She played outside for two hours! It was almost thirty-seven degrees out. So it was warm out..
She was helping her Papa, shoveling her own snow, and still smiling big for the camera! She really knows how, she started last year. She cried one day when I went out to shovel. Come to find out that she really wanted to help! So we got her ready and it was like she had shoveled before. And she really did a good job! When it snows, she calls it her snow! "My snow, my snow".

Of course, none of this would be possible with out the blessing of God! When we were in the process of getting Kristina, it was very hard to wait patiently!! I was going to be a mother for the first time!! And to do it by international adoption, wow what a delivery! :) We almost didn't make it home..but by God's grace we did! And we are SO thankful for that! And everyday!

I do hope and pray that she gets her sibling to add to her spirit of love! Someone to play with, swim with, play in the dirt, color with, swim with, and do all kinds of things together! But, I know that is only possible with God..

Thursday, December 11, 2008


That describes our week since Sunday after church. Up to that it was fine. Kristina had her cousins to play with. One is thirteen...and such a wonderful boy! He allowed Kristina to play house with him...it was cute. Her other cousin who is sixteen months old..stayed for the weekend. They played "hockey"! They both love it and my nephew has a little tiny hockey stick and he really can use it.

Well, after church I really wasn't feeling to good...kinda icky. I fed everyone and told Dan that I had to go lay down. I stayed there until Tuesday afternoon. The flu hit me HARD!! Then my hubby who took such good care of me..got sick. My mom had come over to help out and now she and my dad are sick. My grandmother also has the flu...having a hard time with it. She has already gone to the ER once. Praying that she gets better SOON! And PRAISE GOD that my baby girl did NOT get sick! I am so thankful that she is healthy!

I can not believe that all these days have passed without me even knowing what has been going on. And trust me..sometimes I didn't even care. :( But, I am finally feeling better..wanted to finish decorating after church..but nope, now I am finishing up. Baking cookies and such for the holidays. Spritz cookies are some favorites that I make. We make rosettes too. Oh my, we will have a perogie making weekend starting Saturday morning! Early! Fun!

While I was ill, I thought about people that I have ever met in my life..and the impact that those people had on my life. It's amazing to think about that..

I was reading some other people's journeys to get their children, and found out that some are going to be able to continue their adoptions! I am so happy and thank God for that!! He deserves the credit and the glory for that to be done. I do not know the future of our little John, but I know that he will always and forever in my heart! Faith is key when you trust God totally and completely! I too wish for a miracle for my little boy. Sometimes , he feels like he is here..hiding from me. :) About eight? months ago I had a dream that I saw Kristina and John as teenagers together. I could go on and on about that boy...such a hold he has on my heart! I have put up pictures by our bedroom..our family...

The plaque says FAITH is not thinking God can, but knowing He will. We don't know when..God's timing. Keep praying and have peace that God is in control.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Just a quick something about my little Jovan. I was talking to my grandmother today and I told her that Jovan wasn't going to come home to us. And she got really serious and said why? And before I could answer she asked if someone taken him, and then she asked who took him. I told her that the country stopped the adoptions. We do not know if we will be allowed to make him our son and and a brother. Prayers are still going out to God!! Not only about us, but the other families who were closer to bringing their children home!

God is still in control of what will happen...he knows the time and if we can. We still want him forever and ever to be our little boy. And like I have said before..I am also praying for a family, if it isn't to be us! I so want him to have a mommy and daddy to hug and love him! Sometimes it's hard not to feel a little twinge of sadness in my heart for him!

Looking back at the first time I knew of him...he was sitting in a walker eating a cookie. He reached up to me and I wanted to scoop him in my arms. His smile just really lights up the room! He did not speak...just a soft little laugh/giggle. We would see him from time to time...he was scooting on the floor one day and that was the day I picked him up and held him. That was the moment I was in love. His heart literally touched mine..we were connected. I held him tight and told him that God loved him...and I sang to him and hugged him some more! One day I was allowed to take him outside when Kristina went out. Dan pushed our daughter and I pushed Jovan in the swings. Then Jovan and I sat on the grass and he had the funniest look on his face..then he started to roll and scoot around, he laughed and squealed!! We let the kids go down the slides. It was a good time had by all!

We so wanted to take him home with us!! At the end it was very hard to leave him..I cried for months afterwards! When we took Kristina home and left Jovan, it was like leaving part of our family. Sappy I know, but it was how we felt! Sometimes, I wish I could tell the government how we feel...so that they know how much he is loved and wanted by a family. We of course are very thankful that we were allowed to get our daughter and bring her home forever!!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My Daughter...

I thought I would blog about my daughter Kristina Faith. She is amazing!! The other morning, I had gotten up really early and just had laid down again and dozed off. Kristina came in my room climbed in bed and slipped her arm over my shoulder and said "I love you more mom". I am her mother. Will I ever get used to that? I don't know...but I am loving it!
To be a mom to me is...someone who loves unconditionally, teaches values and respect, inspires, laughs, cries, and best of all teach about God!! (oh, and teaches to clean up after ones self!) :) God blessed me with a beautiful daughter..not just on the outside, but on the inside as well! She is kind, thoughtful, caring, funny, creative, smart, and just plain lovable!! I love the fact that she can pick things up with her toes like I can. (hubby HATES that fact!) :) Food that just her papa and she like...And loves to copy her papa in most everything else!

I will never forget the day that we met Kristina's birth mom. The "butterflies" in my stomach almost made me sick. When we came to the orphanage, she was outside pushing her in a swing. I went over and said hi. And smiled, knowing that neither one of us understood each other. We did have someone interpret when we got inside. My first thought was, God why can't it be that she can keep Kristina with her? Then I thought...I hope she will always know that Kristina will be loved and taken care of! Kristina has Cystic Fibrosis and her mother did not have the resources to provide the care she needed. We spent some time together with Kristina..then she took her to get pictures taken. My heart went to my toes for an instant..We have a picture of Kristina in her mother's arms and I am reaching for her..she didn't want to come at first and when she did she was fine. When it was time for her mother to leave, I watched her walk down the road. Her life and my life were never going to be the same. An ending and a new beginning.

It's funny, maybe not funny..just a God thing. Kristina's mother's name translated into English means snow. That is Kristina's favorite thing!! She has a snow globe and she loves to watch it snow. Every time it flurries..she wants to go out and play. I will never forget that day...and I would never change not meeting her either!!

To be blessed with this wonderful little girl is an awesome thing!!
I am her mother! A mom!

The first picture we saw of her..

While we were in Eastern Europe

This summer..

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Star....

Dan put the star on the tree..he had to cut off about five inches of the top "stick", branch, whatever. It's done he was surprised...didn't get any more decorating done. Kristina and I put a big puzzle together. About two and a half by three and a half feet, but the other side had a picture of a totally different puzzle. She basically whips through any puzzle. We shall see how she does with the one hundred piece puzzles I got her for Christmas. She loves to problem solve things like that. Mine are knots. Give me a knot and I won't move till I get it, and that even goes for the occasional jewelry knot. :)
Christmas Tree 07

Christmas Tree 08

Boy, they look really similar...I'll work more on the decorating tomorrow. I started my wreath made out of the tree branch remains. It's going to smell very nice and very much like Christmas!

I Did It!!!!!!...

Yep, I decorated it by myself!!!! Just in time, I was putting the last box away and Kristina woke up. Dan is not home yet!!! But, as you will see in the picture, I can't put the top on as we need our tallest ladder, and I can not move it myself.

It was fun to do, but lonely! Now for the rest of the house to...I'll wait for Dan and some hot chocolate! :)
Tree Stands and the Big Dipper...

Those are my latest projects! Dan and I were putting up our tree, with a brand NEW tree stand I bought on clearance last year. It was supposed to hold the tree straight with out the hassle...did NOT work. We spent 40 minutes on it. The tradition that we started with Kristina was to decorate it while she slept to surprise her in the morning. That has not happened quite yet. My mom and I drove to Walmart to get a new tree stand at ten o'clock at night! Came home and we put the tree stand on and set the tree upright and it was perfectly straight! :) Yeah!! We have not been home to decorate the tree.. Maybe tonight..or maybe I can do it while she is napping? A surprise to my hubby and my daughter? Cool beans!!

Now the Big Dipper...we live out of the "city" so we see lots of stars. We went to my parent's house for a chili supper last night. When we were driving there...it looked like we were going to drive right in it. Kinda cool!! It brought back memories as a kid. I would look up in the sky in the winter when we would go places...I thought about God and how he made each of them and they are all different. Just like the people on earth! Now that is a "wow" concept to me!

Lunch is calling for Kristina...