Tuesday, October 21, 2014

JoyAnna's Serial Castings have begun!

For all my non-facebook friends!......

"Now I stand on solid ground, and I will publicly praise the LORD." Psalm 26:12
Yesterday, this precious little girl had these feet casted to start the process of being able to stand on solid ground! This day we praise the Lord!! He is bigger than any medical orphanage who doesn't like kids to walk!! Can I hear an AMEN??  
So we sure would covet your prayers!

Look at the difference already!! We will return every 2 weeks for new casts and HOPEFULLY by Christmas we will have braces fit and begin the journey to weight bearing!!

God is good! ALL THE TIME!!


Saturday, October 18, 2014

Life IS Good, Life IS Hard, Life is NEVER dull! PART 1

"Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy." Psalm 47:1

Madelyn recently told me that I needed to be more diligent at updating my blog because many people look at it that don't have Facebook. I said to her..."Hey Maddie, MY time is NOT my own! I really have NO time to do a blog post!!" YIKES!! This is the truth! And so this post will be divided into parts so that I don't get too overwhelmed! 

This is really true! To quote a favorite song...."This is the story of my life! A movie staring me!" My days are sooooo full of family and caring for the children that I don't have time at my computer like I used to! 

So...this day...this Saturday...it is rest time and so the littles are all resting and my husband has the older kids out doing Fall projects to button things up for winter, and I'm in the kitchen with Grace who is baking two pumpkin pies from a sugar pumpkin that she cooked down herself! And what am I doing....oh my goodness...I'm doing a blog post!!! WOW!!!!

On Monday, October 6th, Jeremiah and JoyAnna have been home for 2 months! We just got a notice that our first post placement report is going to be due soon. Seriously...where has the time gone??
At the airport 8/6/14
Camping October 4th, 2014

Gone are the frightened little children at the airport! Instead we have beautiful flowers blossoming daily before our very eyes!!! Can't you see the transformation?

Just yesterday, a dear friend said to me..."Mary, I'm not sure if you can see the difference in JoyAnna daily since you see her every day, but...I can totally see a changed little girl! Wow!" This was such a blessing and encouragement to me.

Are my days hard? Oh yes, they are VERY, VERY hard! I cry a lot out to the Lord for strength. Some days I think..."I don't know if I can do this!", and then I am reminded that of course I can! On these days I'm reminded of James 1: 2-3

"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds,  because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance."

And so I must be developing a GREAT deal of perseverance! Oh YES!!! I must!!! Right??

Maddie recently wrote a blog post about what a day in our home is like. It really describes it well. Here it is!: She titled it:  "Crazy Busy"

It seems like we are crazy busy around here! Even if we don't have somewhere to go, life at home has not a single dull moment. But it is good, and during this season, we are learning to accept a new normal. It has been hard...and definitely a stretch...for all of us. But God is good, and in that we are resting.
 Partly for my own sake to be able to share this with you all, and partly for your own amusement, here is a day in the life of the Winslow family:
6:00am-Mom and Dad have been up for awhile. Mom starts breakfast preparations and getting things ready for the day.

6:30am-Dad goes around and gives the wake up call. One of the things we all love about Dad is the creative ways that he finds to wake us all up in the morning. This morning he wakes up with a song in his heart. So he shares that song with all of us as he starts in the boys room and moves to the girls. This morning, he belts out phrases from "Mister Sandman," but couldn't remember all of the words. As he leaves our room, Dad says, "Five minutes! Be downstairs in five!" 
Sometimes Rosie sleeps longer than the rest of us, but today she wakes up with Dad's singing, and says, "Oh my! Its FREEZING!!" She was almost right, because it was 33 degrees when we woke up on this September morning!

Jerry tries to get into the girls room to say good morning and give his famous sloppy kisses all around, but Dad tells him he can wait till we get downstairs.
6:40am-We finally make it downstairs, and today Elisha heads out to milk the goats with Edward, Jon, Jerry, Nicole and Rosie in tow. Edward tries to keep Jerry from getting into too much trouble while doing his own chores with Jon, which are feeding the chickens. 

Meanwhile, Nicole begins to clean out the nesting boxes and Rosie goes around, trying to help out wherever she can.

7:20am-Mom gets JoyAnna's breakfast ready with her medicine and Maddie gets her up out of bed and dressed, while the kids come inside from doing the animals start on sweeping the floor and vacuuming. JoyAnna gets her breakfast fed to her, and loves every bite! After she's done she goes to lay on her blanket in the living room and play with her toys.

7:40am-before breakfast, kids take a few minutes to read their bibles and have quiet prayer time. Jerry looks at a bible story book, but soon gets distracted. It begins with him singing loud songs, closing his book, and soon escaping his seat and playing with toys.
 8:10am-Dad prays with us and leaves for work. We sit down to breakfast, today its homemade granola.
 8:40am-Kids get started on their school work. Edward reads a chapter in the book he's reading, Elisha finishes up her algebra lesson, and Grace starts her spanish lesson. Jerry runs here, there and everywhere, and Rosie builds a block tower.
 Today is play practice, and Grace and Elisha are needed from our family, so Maddie gets ready to take them to practice. We found out last night that our friends need a ride, so we will pick them on our way.
 10:00am-Maddie, Grace and Elisha leave for play practice. After picking up the friends, we head to play practice and get there early. Play practice goes really well! All the actors are making excellent progress!
 At home, Mom continues to do some school with the kids, has lunch with them, and puts the younger kids down for a nap around 1pm.

1:00pm-play practice goes really well and ends early. We leave and drop our friends at their house, and head home. The kids are still in bed, so Maddie starts on this blog post while Mom plays Scrabble with Edward and Elisha. Grace starts on a project, Jon reads an army book.

3:30pm-The little kids are starting to wake up. Once they are up, Jerry, Rosie and Nicole go outside to play in the new 10x10 sandbox that Dad made for them last weekend.
5:00pm-While we wait for Dad to come home, Mom and Edward start on supper prep.

And thats where we are now!

Hope you enjoyed sharing in our crazy blessed day!!!

And so this is a day at home. Many of our days are at home, but many are not. Many are at appointments for JoyAnna. This has been going well, and we are getting many answers! She truly is thriving! 

She is a living, breathing, testimony to our God everywhere she goes! 

And so...would you join us in praying...pray for family unity, pray for the enemy to be held at bay! He's been very strong, very, very strong!

Pray that we will be strong and courageous and we will NOT be afraid!
To me this photo exudes JOY!!!
That's why it's at the beginning and end of this post!!
And remember...."Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning." Psalms 30:5
I promise to post part 2 soon! 
Love you ALL!