Thursday, December 11, 2014

photo dump .. and some important news !

A few days ago I uploaded these photos from my phone (it seems that's the only ways photos get taken these days !) and inserted them into the blogger app on my phone (it seems that's the only way blogposts get written these days) and voice texted my words into my phone (again.... you get the picture) .... and lo and behold, when I opened the draft for this post on my desktop computer ... I got zilch.

Actually, the pictures are here (needing to be resized and placed in order) but the words are gone.

Technology = zero

Headache = one

So instead of trying to recapture my words from a few days ago ... they probably weren't all that profound anyway .... I will type what's on my heart right now . And if it doesn't gel with the pictures, pretend this is one of those abstract paintings that doesn't necessarily make sense, but is art nonetheless ... in blog form.

The above photos were from our tree decorating party last week. Josiah and Monique and Macie joined us - Hayden and Macie took turns trying to eat the ornaments I had spread out on the floor, while the rest of us hung them on the tree. The look in Hayden's eyes when it was all finished was ... priceless. He has spent the past few weeks dutifully pointing out Christmas lights wherever we go - "ooooh, lights !" he reverently whispers, making this seasoned-Mama's heart melt as if he were my first baby seeing lights for the very first time.

In other news ...

Caleb decorated the front of our house right before Thanksgiving, earning him a bagel of his choice at New York Bagels. We now get leftover bagels free when Tyler comes home (after working there all day), earning him My Favorite Child of the Year.

I jest. 

Sort of.

Next is a random photo from a few weeks ago when I got to babysit my favorite grandson, Koa.

He's also my only grandson, but I'm sure that won't be for long, given the way we Rices seem to multiply like bunnies. At least that's what someone told us many years ago, and that was when we only had three kids. We're a regular bunny factory these days, I guess.

I have no idea why the above photo was on my camera roll, except for the fact that the sun was shining. Those moments are rare come December in Oregon, so I think I captured it for that reason. I adore our cozy, rainy, wintery days, but honestly some days I do yearn for sunshine ... like a stay-at-home mom craves chocolate.

Okay, maybe that analogy wouldn't score points with any high school grammar teacher, but it was the best thing I could come up with while I sit here at the computer typing and .... craving chocolate. 

I realized another thing when I transferred these iPhone pics to this post : I take a lot of pictures of my babies sleeping....

I mean a LOT of pictures.

But can you blame me ?? They are so cuuuuuute when they're sleeping.

And even cuter when they wake up .

Speaking of flipping adorably cute, look at these little soft soled shoes that my daughter-in-love made Hayden for Christmas ...

She sells them in her Etsy shop, and she has a few pairs left if you love them as much as I do !

Oops, there I go again !!! #sleepingbabiesaddict

I've been a baking maniac lately. If I have to be stuck in the house all day and night (thank you rain, and thank you pink eye) I am going to make the most of my time here. Because I don't have enough to do homeschooling six kids and feeding a family of 11, I like to add some more stuff to my plate. 


If you're on Instagram, I'm posting daily easy cookie recipes there for those of you who (like me) are short on time, but long on ...  cravings. And for those of you who are counting your calories during the holiday season, I deliberately post only non-fattening, low-sugar, healthy shmealthy recipes for y'all to enjoy .

And if you believe that, I have a small child I would like to sell you for a week. At least until he's done cutting molars and getting over his ear infection at the same time. (Thus the cookies on the couch. Hey, we do what we need to for survival around these parts. Judge away !)

look at that !  A sleeping baby picture ! How did that get here ????

Lily has been in rare form these days. I don't know if it's her way of telling us she doesn't give a hoot about Naughty and Nice Lists, or if this is a delayed version of the terrible twos coming to haunt us just before she turns five next month ... but she has definitely been a little feistier than usual. And sneeeeeaky. I won't go into her exploits here, but if you see a small blond elf running around the neighborhood wearing three pairs of her sister's underwear around her waist while eating a bag of stolen m&m's and hiding my van keys.... please send her home as quickly as possible. I'm locking her up til this season of merriment and mischief has run its course !

Just before I end this post, I have three important items to share ... the first two are really important, and the last one is just a teeny bit important. If you're short on time, just pay attention in that order :)

Liam Timothy Garvin, made his blessed appearance into the world on Sunday, November 30th, 2014 at 9:06 am. 

If you are a newer reader here, please take the time to go back and read THIS POST to understand what incredible weight the above sentence holds.

I'm swallowing back tears right now, because I'm remembering a day in March of 2013 when Heaven seemed a little bit sweeter, but our hearts were broken for the Garvin family. 

Baby Emma spent just 26 short minutes with her mama and daddy, pictured above. She went home to be with Jesus that day, and she left behind a baby-shaped vacuum in her parents' hearts. Although no child can ever replace another, I know Jessie and her husband are rejoicing right now, and beyond thrilled that God has blessed them with a new little one to fill their hearts and arms ...

From Jessie's email :
 We are so in love with this precious gift from God and could not be more thankful. Thank you for all of your prayers and love. We are thrilled to share this news with you and please feel free to share the news with Lily's readers. You have all been such an incredible support to us and we are thankful for each of you in our lives.

Congratulations, Jessie and Tim, and sweet Baby Liam - our hearts are overflowing with joy !!!


The second piece of important news I need to share with you is a request from a dear friend ...

Dear Patti,

It's been two years now since they banned us from our adoption... 2 1/2 years since I saw Natasha. But I have never given up on her. I still get to receive pictures and I am once again sending gifts to her orphanage this year. It seems like such a small thing to do but it helps keep me feeling connected in some small way. 

In honor of Natasha's 9th birthday and the 2 year anniversary of the adoption ban please join together with us to get 10,000 likes on the Parents United for Russian Orphans FB Page by the end of the year. 
Our goal is for people around the world to come together to help the children stuck in Russian orphanages by providing information and supporting groups that help the children have better lives. We are begging the Russian government to bring about change for the better and continue to ask them to work with our government to allow the remaining pipeline children to come home. If this is not possible, we pray the children will speedily find loving homes in Russia and that the government will provide the necessary support system for them.
Natasha was only 6 years old when a loving family met her and agreed to adopt her. She has spent an extra 2 1/2 years in an orphanage because of the adoption ban and most likely will spend the rest of her life without ever knowing the love of a family if changes are not made.
Please visit our blog and read this article by Russian journalist and volunteer for Downside Up Julia Kolesnickenko ... 
And the link to the Documentary FB Page.
Katrina Morris

Will you join me in praying for Natasha and all of the other orphans left behind in Russia ? I will be blogging about one of these orphans in the New Year - God has worked some amazing miracles for some of these little ones, and I know He will continue to do so in the days ahead. 


As I said above. this last item of business is pretty unimportant in light of adoptions and miracle babies ... so no worries if your eyes have glazed over at this point in today's post.

But ..... if you're still with me .... there are a hundred ideas for stocking stuffers over in Lily's Scentsy Store right now ...

These sweet smelling products are the perfect answer for those hard-to-buy for folks on your Christmas list. Who doesn't love to fill their homes with lovely fragrances, especially when most of us spend so much time indoors during the looong winter months ?

Scentsy offers so many products to choose from ... whether that's beautiful warmers like the ones pictured above that are used with Scentsy bars to fill your home or office with fragrance, or Bath and Body products like the ones below ...

...whatever your gift giving needs, there is something for everyone available in Lily's Scentsy Store. Make sure to click on Lily's Basket Party when you order ... let me know in the comment section if you place an order in December, and you will be entered to win a fragrance bar of your choice !

Happy shopping ... now go take on the day ;)


Grammi Faith said...

I could plaster my bedroom walls with all the pictures of my grandbabies and great-grandbabies and still want more to look at. I like that Scentsy cardinal. I just might have to place an order.

Katrina said...

Patti thank you so much for helping the Russian Orphans not be forgotten. There are many people in Russia fighting hard for them and they could really use the support and encouragement to know that they are not alone. I appreciate you including us in your post more than you will ever know.

Unknown said...

I always love to look at your pictures! I also love to take pictures of sleeping babies!!

Kelly Marin said...

My eyes got all tearyeyed and my heart rejoices with the Garvins as they celebrate their precious boy, it is nice to see a blessing to someone who I mourned with though I did not know them thanks for the sweet update!!!

cara said...

I LOVE,LOVE seeing all of these sweet pictures of everyone. And Benji couldn't get enough of Lily naughty OR nice, ha!

I am SO thrilled to hear the news about the Garvins. What a blessing!!

I liked the page on FB about Russian orphans. And I will go read the blog. My heart aches for these precious children.

I wish I had read this before I finished all of my Christmas shopping. I should have thought about Scentsy. I am not sure if my hubby would love it if I buy one more thing, ha! But I may have to go look!

Maybe you could send Lily out here to visit every now and then during her naughty phase. We could just add to our naughty ones, ha! As I type this, Benji is right by me. First, he tried to unwrap a present. But I said NO before he could do it fast enough. Now he is trying to grab Daddy's phone charger. Oh dear!!! And he and James together are twice the antics. xoxoxo

Anne B. said...

Love love love your blog....been reading for a while. My heart was both broken and rejoicing at this update. I try to always remember that the Lord does indeed give and he does indeed take away. We just need to learn to trust him.
I did order some Scentsy products (love those too!) last week but forgot to leave a comment! So here it is! Maybe I will be a winner!! LOL! MERRY CHRISTMAS RICE RANCHERS!!!!