"what i've said, that will i bring about & what i've planned, that will i do." isaiah 46:11

Monday, April 30, 2007


well, brit got sick on saturday with congestion, headache & sore throat & she's politely passed it on to kiara who's been running a fever since yesterday morning ~ this can't stay here, anyone else want it? ~ since we couldn't go to church yesterday, i used that day to do hair ~ we're now done with hair until the end of may, when i'll need it to be redone for vacation ~ here's a picture of ruby & karleigh in their 'new do' (kiara's not in the picture due to her being puny sick & sleeping right now)today we've been home all day (except for spike & ruby who had work & school) ~ i'm heading out tonight with ruby & karleigh for dinner with licia (haitian missionary), her 2 little boys, her dad zach, a friend of his, my parents & hopefully spike (if he can get back in time to meet us) ~ we're hitting the golden corral (wonderful buffet) at 6:30 as i leave the 2 sickos home to eat popcorn, lay on the living room floor & watch a movie ~ kiara's looking forward to it, but doesn't know what she'll be missing (all you can eat buffet - shhhh, don't tell her!) ~ this morning i got up & made reservations at the VISA lodge in haiti for our time there, prayed for dads passport to come quickly, ordered my antibiotics, prayed for dads passport to come quickly, found somewhere that brit could stay as spike will be gone for 3 days while i'm gone & i don't want her here at home alone at night (day's fine, but not at night), prayed for dads passport to come quickly, contacted the schools, prayed for dads passport to come quickly, let the bus driver know the dates ruby will not be riding the bus & then prayed for dads passport to come quickly! ~ we REALLY need his passport to come quickly! ~ well, tata for now! ~ hugs

Saturday, April 28, 2007


just wanted to post that my dad, my mom & i will all 3 be traveling to haiti on may 15 & returning home on may 22 (we'll actually be IN haiti from the 16-21 as we'll be overnighting in miami both going in & coming out) ~ this'll be the first time we'll be able to see/meet madisyn (my sister) & we all can't wait! ~ pray that my father's passport comes in as it's due on the 11th of may & we're leaving the 15th (EEEEK)! ~ aa.com's having a great sale & we're flying RT from indianapolis, IN to PAP, haiti for just $383.00pp ($270.00 + $103.20 tax & $10 booking fee) for going through american over the phone & letting them do it ~ i wish spike was able to go with us, but with us leaving for vacation on june 8, he'd have a hard time taking off for the haiti trip & then again for vacation a couple 3 weeks later ~ also, in may he's got a couple days here & a couple days there he could go, but not several all in a row ~ not only will i miss him & the kids terribly, but our anniversary's on the 18th & we'll not be together (whaaa) ~ the bear cubs will be staying with the caswells (pray for angie!!) & they're so excited! ~ we were with them tonight when the girls found out & when we got home karleigh said, "daddy, when you takin' us to papa kyles?" ~ he said, "oh that's not going to be for a couple weeks" ~ she just stared & looked confused ~ [if you want to know where 'papa kyle' comes from it's this: their kids call him papa, we call him kyle ~ to our little ones, PAPA + KYLE = PAPA KYLE! ~ they'vce called him this forever & boy you should see the looks we get ie: 2 white couples with 1 teenage white girl & 6 young haitian children ~ some calling 'mama', 'papa', 'daddy', 'mommy', 'papa kyle' & 'boo' ~ hehehe] ~ just thought we'd share the excitement!!


well, i took her to the airport this morning as she's heading back to haiti today ~ she'll be arriving there this afternoon about 3:30pm ~ please be praying for her as she's in a LOT of pain as her hip's giving her so much trouble ~ they've scheduled her surgery for the end of may to have her hip replaced, but until then (& after) she'll certainly need our prayers as she's really hurting ~ i did learn something about her this week that i never knew ~ in haiti she's always drinking coke & LOVES it, so whenever she's heading our way we've coke & potato chips for her because we know how much she loves them ~ we went to dinner & the movies last night & at dinner she was asked by the server what she'd like to drink ~ she stated, "pepsi" & the server let her know that they have coke products & so she said, "well, that's fine, but i really wish you had pepsi" ~ after the server walked away i inquired about this coke/pepsi thing & she said that she really does like pepsi MUCH better in the states, but will drink coke if pepsi's not available ~ GRRRRR ~ she'd never said anything to us about this so we've been buying her cokes when she could've been drinking pepsi all this time! ~ well, i can assure you, i'll never happen again & she'll forever, from here on out, receive PEPSI COLA from the sheplers! ~ we'd a wonderful time with her even though her stay was short, but she did get a lot accomplished while here ~ she's hoping to start seeing things move swiftly in haiti with all the dossiers/adoptions that she's working on at this time ~ i'll be phoning her this evening to make sure she got in alright so i'll post when i hear something! ~

Thursday, April 26, 2007


well, madisyn's having a birthday on may 2 & i wanted to post a bit about her & our family ~ when spike & i got married we moved to lafayette & during that time there was a lot of strife between us & my parents ~ we all had faults, but of course one can usually only sees others faults & to me dad had a very bad temper & mom seemed very controlling ~ we prayed & prayed for the situation to heal (as i know they did as well) & over the years, things began improving ~ now, several years later it's great! ~ we're with them all the time whether it's at our house, their house, camping, meeting for dinner or at the movies, we're together all the time it seems ~ i keep teasing them both saying that madisyn won't be raised by the same parents that we were raised with ~ they just laugh, but i know what it'll be like: she'll never have to lift a finger (i remember doing dishes & boy, do i remember 'yard work saturdays'), she'll have everything her little heart desires (i don't remember getting EVERYTHING i wanted!) & then there's old blue (brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it) ~ i'm anxious to see if she ends up standing at the attic door on 'fan day' just to be handed old blue ~ naw, she'll be too good for that, but you know what? ~ that's fine with me ~ i can't wait to spoil her right along with them & treat her like a queen ~ with mom homeschooling her, i'll be able to spend a lot of time with her & i can't wait ~ i just wanted to say happy birthday madisyn & i can't wait to see you ~ just remember & never forget, I'LL be the one that'll be passing out the fans on 'fan day' & i'll make sure you get an 'old blue' of your own (inside family joke) *hehehe, smiling & giggling inside* ~ in the end it was god that mended hearts & lives & it was him that's caused dad & mom's hearts to be opened to adopt madisyn & give her a home, family & all that she could ever hope for & for that i'm thankful to him & them ~ madisyn, you'll have a good life with them, i promise.... but for god!


well, barbara got in to our house this morning about 2ish AM after driving for hours ~ we stayed up & visited for about an hour or so, then off to bed we went ~ we woke this morning, got ready & took off about 11 or so, went to lunch, then to walmart for some shopping ~ we then took kiara & karleigh home to spike as he & brit were heading to get haircuts & they took K & K with them as i had to take ruby for a dr. appointment ~ spike, brit, K & K all went for hair cuts, then out to eat, then home for bedtime while barbara & i took ruby to the dr., then to the model home we're sooooo wanting so she could see it & 'her room' to see if it'd be suitable for her *smile* ~ it passed with flying colors as she loved it as much as we do ~ we then went to see the 2 neighborhoods where we'd have a choice to build it in & she loved the locations as well ~ we then ran to get some dinner & then headed to dad & mom's house as they were wanting to show her madisyn's room & how they've got it all fixed up for her ~ we spent about an hour there & then headed home to put ruby to bed, get clothing out for tomorrow, check email & now i'm off to bed! ~ angie, if you're reading this, spike just told me you called today, but it's after 11 so i'll call you in the morning (SORRY!) ~ tata for now & hugs!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007


well, i'm lost (again) on this blog thing ~ spike keeps teasing me saying, "i'm going to wear out my blog", with all the 'moving things around, adding things, etc. that i do, but oh well, it's mine & i like doing it! ~ i do have something (alright a lot of things), that's got me stumped ~ on my blog (bottom right), i've added the links to blogs that i read daily ~ yesteady one of those people (a person i don't know), added a comment to my recent post that stated how appreciative she was with me adding her to my blog & for the traffic i've created on her site ~ how did she know who i was? ~ how did she know that i added her? ~ how did she know where to find me? ~ that's the neatest thing, but ooooh, how'd she do dat? ~ anyone out there that's smart in this blog thing, please email me with (how'd she do dat) information as i'm in awe ~ hope to hear from someone soon (sherri, if you're reading this, you've made we wonder, can you share?)

Monday, April 23, 2007


if you look in the dictionary, here are some words & their definitions ~ read through them & see where they go (hmmm, interesting)~
black = dark
dark = obscure
obscure = dim
dim = pale
pale = white
so the end, black really does equal white!!

where are you allowing your tent to be pitched?...

the pastor preached a great sermon yesterday on how far away from sin/negative things do we really have to stay, to still be alright & on the right track ~ he commented on how we've got to not only stay clear of negative things in our lives, but not even go where these things are ~ he talked about how lots wife looked back & was turned into a pillar of salt, stating that lot was ahead of her & she wasn't walking 'with' him, but instead behind him ~ we can't drag behind, but instead, stay up where we need to be ~ we can't do what god would have us do if we're constantly looking back ~ your directions & your decisions determine your destiny ~ why pitch your tent where you know you're not supposed to be, thinking it'll be alright & even though you're pitching it there, you'll not be tempted with the things around you ~ why not just pitch your tent elsewhere so you're not even tempted ~ it's not just you, you're affecting, but it's your whole family & those around you ~ i'm sure i'm not doing his sermon justice, but all i can say's that it was very good & very well presented ~ here's the scripture to back what he referred to:
Genesis 13:1-13
1) So Abram went up from Egypt to the Negev, with his wife & everything he had & Lot went with him 2) Abram had become very wealthy in livestock & in silver & gold 3) From the Negev he went from place to place until he came to Bethel, to the place between Bethel & Ai where his tent had been earlier 4) And where he had first built an altar. There Abram called on the name of the Lord. 5) Now Lot, who was moving about with Abram, also had flocks & herds & tents. 6) But the land stayed together, for their possessions were so great that they were not able to stay together. 7) And quarreling arose between Abram's herdsmen & the herdsmen of Lot. The Canaanites & Perizzites were also living in the land at that time. 8) So Abram said to Lot, "Let's not have any quarreling between you & me, or between your herdsmen & mine, for we are brothers. 9) Is not the whole land before you? Let's part complany. If you go to the left, I'll go to the right; if you go to the right, I'll go to the left." 10) Lot looked up & saw that the whole plain of the Jordan was well watered, like the garden of the Lord," like the land of Egypt, toward Zoar." (This was before the Lord destroyed Sodom & Gomorrah) 11) So Lot chose for himself the whole plain of the Jordan & set out toward the east. The two men parted company; 12) Abram lived in the land of Canaan, while Lot lived among the cities of the plain & pitched his tents near Sodom. 13) Now the men of Sodom were wicked & were sinning greatly against the Lord.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

9 hours just to take a drive?? ~

yep, you read it right ~ we left this house today (spike, me & the 3 bear cubs - brit opted to stay home & read UGH) & headed out for an outing ~ we planned to stop for lunch & then just take a drive ~ well, with our house gaining weight & getting smaller & us all busting at the seams, we went out looking at more homes today ~ here's the once we found that we love love & it's called the somerset (floorplans as well) ~~ it has all the bedrooms upstairs ie: master, brit/bedroom #2, kiara/karleigh together/bedroom #3 & ruby/bedroom #4 ~ it has a HUGE office for spike, den for barbara & our music equipment, kitchen & family room ~ we loved it & spike also loved the idea of having a 3 car garage ~ we're going tomorrow to check out a couple more in different communities, then we'll check on getting preapproved, selling our house & then moving (gosh, sounds like loads of fun & lots of work!) ~ we left the house about 1:30 & didn't get back home until about 10, but the girls were very good ~ tomorrow, we've got church & then we're house hunting/looking again ~ anyone else out there take drives that last 9 hours like we do?? ~ after we got home i asked brit what she did all day & she said, "well, i think all i did was read" ~ 9 hours of nonstop reading??? ~ how can a person do that & stay mentally alright in the head? ~ i can't hardly (alright, i can't!) read a book from cover to cover in 1 setting (alright, if the truth be known, i started a book - a very good book - back in june of last year & am only half done with it & boy, does that drive brit nuts!) ~ on the trip today we discussed everything from A to Z including kiara asking if we should or shouldn't say, "oh my gosh!", kiara asked when she was going to turn white, karleigh asked if chuck e. cheese was opened each time she spotted one (we'd no idea how many chuck e. cheese's there are around here!) ~ kiara & karleigh were at one point shouting very loudly for daddy to, "GO FASTER LIKE MANDY DOES!" (mandy's our niece that watched kiara & karleigh last week when we went with ralph & sharel to chicago), guess they loved your driving mandy! *smile* ~ we also heard every chorus of 'we are family', 'i can only imagine', 'you are my sunshine' & lots of other things that neither spike, nor myself could understand ~ they received play microphones (thanks McDonalds!) with their happy meals today, so they were even more moved to be an american idol today given they now had their props ~ none of the 3 fell asleep, but were extremely tired by the end of the trip (as were we) ~ all in all we had a wonderful day, nice weather & loads of laughs ~ thanks for the great day, guys! ~ hugs...

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

another dossier, on it's way!...

well, yesterday spike & i went to chicago with ralph & sharel (loudnie's new parents)... we went there to have their dossier authenticated at the haitian consulate... when we returned home last night, we went & picked up the girls (their daughter mandy had watched them for us - thanks mandy!!), took them home to put in bed & then i went to kinko's to copy the rest of the rest of their dossier... i mailed it out last night at 11pm YEAH!... it'll be arriving to barbara tomorrow (thursday) by 10am... it's so nice when things come together as these 2 adoptions have come together... dad & mom got madisyn's paperwork done in just 3 weeks & ralph & sharel only took 4 weeks (good work you 2!!)... here one family's getting madisyn (13y) & the other family's getting loudnie (6y) & they're both sisters, will be raised 10 minutes apart & both in 'our' family (madisyn will be my sister & loudnie will be my niece)... well, it's a god thing & i'm so happy that he's allowed me to be a small part of it... well, i'm off to bed, another busy day in 'my life' tomorrow... ta ta!!

Friday, April 13, 2007

a mother who wanted 10 fingers & 10 toes, but got something more...

My friend's expecting her first child. People keep asking what she wants. She smiles demurely, shakes her head & gives the answer mothers have given throughout the pages of time. She says it doesn't matter whether it's a boy or a girl. She just wants it to have ten fingers & ten toes. Of course, that's what she says. That's what mothers have always said. Mothers lie. Truth be told, every mother wants a whole lot more. Every mother wants a perfectly healthy baby with a round head, rosebud lips, button nose, beautiful eyes & satin skin. Every mother wants a baby so gorgeous that people will pity the Gerber baby for being flat-out ugly. Every mother wants a baby that will roll over, sit up & take those first steps right on schedule (according to the baby development chart on page 57, column two). Every mother wants a baby that can see, hear, run, jump & fire neurons by the billions. She wants a kid that can smack the ball out of the park & do toe points that are the envy of the entire ballet class. Call it greed if you want, but we mothers want what we want. Some mothers get babies with something more. Some mothers get babies with conditions they can't pronounce, a spine that didn't fuse, a missing chromosome or a palette that didn't close. Most of those mothers can remember the time, the place, the shoes they were wearing & the color of the walls in the small, suffocating room where the doctor uttered the words that took their breath away. It felt like recess in the fourth grade when you didn't see the kick ball coming & it knocked the wind clean out of you. Some mothers leave the hospital with a healthy bundle, then months, even years later, take him in for a routine visit, or schedule her for a well check & crash head first into a brick wall as they bear the brunt of devastating news. It can't be possible! That doesn't run in our family. Can this really be happening in our lifetime? I'm a woman who watches the Olympics for the sheer thrill of seeing finely sculpted bodies. It's not a lust thing, it's a wondrous thing. The athletes appear as specimens without flaw - rippling muscles with nary an ounce of flab or fat, virtual powerhouses of strength withlungs & limbs working in perfect harmony. Then the athlete walks over to a tote bag, rustles through the contents & pulls out an inhaler. As I've told my own kids, be it on the way to physical therapy after a third knee surgery, or on a trip home from an echo cardiogram, there's no such thing as a perfect body. Everybody will bear something at some time or another. Maybe the affliction will be apparent to curious eyes, or maybe it'll be unseen, quietly treated with trips to the doctor, medication or surgery. The health problems our children have experienced have been minimal & manageable, so I watch with keen interest & great admiration the mothers of children with serious disabilities & wonder how they do it. Frankly, sometimes you mothers scare me. How you lift that child in & out of a wheelchair 20 times a day. How you monitor tests, track medications, regulate diet & serve as the gate keeper to a hundred specialists yammering in your ear. I wonder how you endure the clichés & the platitudes, well-intentioned souls explaining how God's at work when you've occasionally questioned if God's on strike. I even wonder how you endure schmaltzy pieces like this one -- saluting you, painting you as hero & saint, when you know you're ordinary. You snap, you bark, you bite. You didn't volunteer for this. You didn't jump up & down in the motherhood line yelling, "Choose me, God! Choose me! I've got what it takes." You're a woman who doesn't have time to step back & put things in perspective, so, please, let me do it for you. From where I sit, you're way ahead of the pack. You've developed the strength of a draft horse while holding onto the delicacy of a daffodil. You've a heart that melts like chocolate in a glove box in July, carefully counter-balanced against the stubbornness of an Ozark mule. You can be warm & tender one minute & when circumstances require intense & aggressive the next. You're the mother, advocate & protector of a child with a disability. You're a neighbor, a friend, the stranger I pass at the mall. You're the woman I sit next to at church, my cousin & my sister-in-law. In some cases you're not the woman that gave birth to this child, but instead you've even surpassed her in that, you're the woman that 'chose' to adopt this child even knowing what was in store for you & your family down the road. You easily could've said, "No thanks, I'll wait for the next 'healthy' child to parent", but instead you pulled up your bootstraps & said, "I'm ready, with God on my side, I can do this". You're a woman who wanted ten fingers & ten toes & got something more. You're a wonder.
this was sent to me by a friend of mine (laurie s)... i read it, thought it was very beautifully written about these mothers who give so much of themselves for their children... i emailed her thanking her for sending it as it was beautiful... she replied back with, "I thought so & passed it on to those mom's that get something more, but Do GREAT!!!!!"... it wasn't until i read that sentence that i even stopped to think that 'I' was one of 'these moms' the story's talking about... i was so touched as i'd never looked at myself that way... i thank god for allowing me the opportunity to raise the children we've got & for ruby, being as she is & causing me to be 'one of these moms'... i'm humbled...

Monday, April 9, 2007

i'm sick & feel beat down...

well, the 3 bear cubs have not been feeling well (ie: cough, runny noses, sneezing, watery eyes, fever, etc.) & now i've got it... i feel horrible, but have to get out in the next day or so as there's things i HAVE to do!... kiara's about to drive me over the edge (& i've been teetering for a LONG time)... she's into everything & she's almost 5y old!!... when she lays down for naptime (& yes, she definately needs a nap!), she goes into the bathroom & gets into shampoo from the shower, cat food & water, sneaks into the living room when she can hear i'm not in there & gets drinks out of my cup... she's being pushy with her sisters, is lying about everything & it's driving me crazy!... it's been going on for awhile now, but seems to get worse everyday... i truly don't know what to do with her, but something's certainly got to be done... i'll write more on this when i get time, but for now, this tired mommy's hittin' the sack!... nite

are you a cracked pot?...

An elderly woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck. One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect & always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full. For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water. Of course , the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection & miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do. After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream "I'm ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house." The old woman smiled, "Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?" "That's because I've always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path & every day while we walk back, you water them." "For two years I've been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house." Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it's the cracks & flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting & rewarding. You've just got to take each person for what they are & look for the good in them. So, to all of my crackpot friends, have a great day & remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!

"but they're not NANA's EGGS!!", says karleigh...

well, got up this morning a bit later than normal as the bear cubs & i are all under the weather... being the time was what it was, i decided to just do brunch & then dinner tonight so i started getting everything out... karleigh said, "mommy, what's for breakfast?"... i said, "well, we'll not be having just a breakfast, but instead, we'll have a breakfast & lunch together, how will that be?"... she said, "great, so what's for lunch?"... i said (as i was getting things out of the frig), "sausage, eggs & toast with orange juice, how's that?"... at that moment she colapsed onto the floor & said, "BUT THEY'RE NOT NANA'S EGGS!!!"... i couldn't figure out what she was talking about as she made the comment that she could ONLY eat nanas black eggs!... after questioning her about it, i found that she wanted to eat only eggs that nana makes & that she needed to call nana right now!... she talked to mom & mom even told her she'd brought the eggs that i had, to my house for her - nope, not good enough... she wanted nana's black eggs (brown eggs)... she finally did eat MY eggs, but grumbled the whole time & then just as she finished, in walks grandpa & nana with a surprise... yep, you guessed it - BLACK EGGS!!... ahhh, now the princess' happy as she's got 'nana eggs' *smile*

Friday, April 6, 2007

naked barbies, whiney kids, runny noses & coughs...

well, where do i even begin?... i woke up this AM to an opened box (from last night) of naked barbie dolls (which around here's a no-no!), WHINEY KIDS (those certainly are caps as they've VERY whiney), runny noses & coughs... mom came over this AM & we headed out for a funfilled day at the childrens museum... we all couldn't wait as this' spring break & since i've been working almost 24/7 on these adoption dossiers, we've not had any time at all to do anything 'fun' so today was 'our day'... we got to the CM & the kids were squirming to get out of their seats... pulled into the parking lot to see about 352 thousand people there, there was a line from here to haiti & all the parking lots were FULL!!... UGH!... what to do with 3 whiney kids after they've been told they were going to a 'fun place'?... we pulled out, much to the dismay of our kids & headed to the movies... we went to see 'is it done yet?' & we had a pretty good time... no one's had naps so bedtime will come at 7:30 tonight *smiling, just at the thought of it*... we're planning on staying home this evening, watching TV & doing absolutely NOTHING *smiling, just at the thought of it*... tomorrow (saturday) we're staying home, watching TV & doing absolutely NOTHING *smiling, just at the thought of it* (get my drift?)... we're just all so spent!... we feel as if we've had no 'family time' for a long time & believe me, we're all suffering from it... kids are scrapping at one another, spike & i are passing in the night & brit's got that - girl whatchu talkin' 'bout, head shake down to an art & has perfected it rather nicely these past few days so i can assure you, we really NEED it!... well, the natives are getting restless & so i need to get going... i'll get on here later & add more about my day as it's only 5PM & there's still more time for things to happen around here!

Thursday, April 5, 2007

yesterday & today...

boy, have these 2 days been extremely B.U.S.Y.~!... yesterday the girls & i went to my SIL's (sharel) & picked up her dossier, had to go get another dr. letter for my MIL, went to the police station as the lady had forgotten to print her name when she notarized it, took everything else to the notary & have things notarized... in the afternoon i took dustin to indianapolis FOR NOTHING as when we got there we found out what he had wasn't what he needed UGH... today i got up early & went to pick up licia (the missionary) as she's here for 1 month... we went to INS for her to file some paperwork (which didn't happen as her hubby's haitian & so they'll have to file in haiti), filed some papers for sharel, went to the statehouse to authenticate everything else that we had left, for sharel... after eating lunch, we went to dad/mom's house so licia could see & take pics of madisyn's room & visit with my parents... i then took her home & headed for kinko's copy shop & copied paperwork for the next 3 hours *smile*... spike met me & we then went to dinner, just the 2 of us *smiling BIG*... tomorrow's going to be a day just for the kids & i... it's been brit's spring break all week, but i've had to work so much, we've not gotten to do anything, so i'm really looking forward to it... i'll take pics & post them tomorrow... nite!