One year with Elijah, a New Kitchen, and a trip to Mexico!

This month has been nutty enough that this poor little blog is pretty neglected lately.  If there is anyone still out there in cyber land who cares about our severely mundane yet odd life here's a little update.

It's been a crazy sort of month.  Reminiscent of last January where we were rushing around getting all the last minute stuff done for our trip to China.

A year ago we were busy dropping off kids and making our way to the airport.  Three days from now will be the "Gotcha" day anniversary.  It's a bit mind blowing to think that after feeling like the process would NEVER end, that it's already been a year since it ended...or began, depends on how you look at it I guess.

On the other hand it feels as if this little guy has been a part of our family for ages.  He has just meshed in so incredibly well.  I don't take that for granted because I know that is not the "norm" with adoption.  Don't get me wrong, we definitely have our challenging moments, but over all he just "fits".

He has made so much progress this year and is getting stronger every day has he continues to recover from surgery.  He lost muscle strength during his time in casts, but he gained SO much.  Straight legs that he can actually balance on!

(one year ago, gotcha day.  He was such a brave little guy)

I really feel like I owe the bit one year anniversary a better blog post than this, but this is all I've got right now.  My creativity, deep thoughts, and wit is hidden beneath thoughts like "my house is torn apart", "we haven't started packing for Mexico!", "Insurance...we need insurance!", and "What's for supper?."

This month my husband took advantage of the slow season on the farm, and a harvest bonus check, to build me a new kitchen.  It's been one of those "someday" sort of projects that I honestly didn't expect to ever happen. We have lived in this house 11 years and have slowly plugged away on little remodel jobs.  It honestly hasn't been top on my list of priorities and any time I begin to feel grumbly about 60 year old grungy cupboards, duct tape holding things together, and drawers that fill with sawdust I remember that my kitchen is pretty snazzy compared to what most of the world uses to prepare food.  It has been more than adequate. Despite my (mostly successful) effort to be content with my kitchen my husband decided he loves me enough to give me something beautiful.

Out with the old.

I happen to be married to a journeyman cabinet maker, which is pretty handy if you need a kitchen built.  He's also super handy at plumbing, wiring, etc.  

It looks amazing now...and is so functional.  I love it! I spend so much time in this room it feels good to be in a space that looks so nice and fresh.

(adaptable =microwaved burritos in the living room)

It was difficult to have the kitchen torn apart for a week though! No sink, no dishwasher, and no stove.  The dining room and living room were also a mess filled with everything that used to be in the kitchen.  It' was nut bar factor 10...but we made it.  It was worth the chaos.

Almost there.  Check out my nice new huge drawers!


All done except the tile backsplash.  We'll tackle that this spring when we get back from Baja.

Both sides of my kitchen match now!
I can hardly believe that it's mine.
My Husband is a rockstar.

I love the new counter top.  I'm so indecisive and it was scary trying to pick a pattern based on tiny samples.  In the end Silas picked this one, and I think he did a great job.  
p.s my kitchen well never again look so uncluttered and clean. 

Now for the next project.
The Hubster dug the trailer out of snow drifts today.  It was a beautiful day, and it was actually warm enough that snow was melting and sticky (+2).

Nothing says "lets go camping!" like snow drifts.

Now to get it packed!
Only a few more days until the calender says we're going to pull out of here and head south.  Of course, what the weather network says may trump the calender but we have a goal to shoot for.

Since this is a meandering sort of post, here are some pics from one year ago..taken in China.

He had this serious look on his face a lot back then.  Now that I really know him, looking back at the pics kind of makes me sad.  He does terrified in a strange way...sometime he even plasters on a goofy smile.  If you didn't know him well you'd maybe even think he was happy.  

It was a good trip though.  We have such great memories from our time in China, and we'd go back there in a heart beat.  

I don't really notice how much he's grown up this year, until I look back at the pictures and see his clothes.  Those jeans barely fit him now and are nearly too short..and that coat just covers his wrists this winter.  He hasn't grown a ton, but he clearly has grown.  His teeth have changed so much this year too. 
Oh my heart, I love this boy.

Speaking of love.
Do you remember these kids?
I cannot wait to see them again.

(these pics were taken by my friend Amber last spring)

These last few pics were taken by Amber a few days ago

I can't believe how much big brother Alvaro has grown up! I really do have a huge soft spot in my heart for this kid.  He's had his "Tia" smitten since the time he was a little boy who colored me a heart picture.

Big sister Minerva is now living about an hour away from the others and has started her own little family.  Looking forward to meeting this sweet baby girl!

We are also planning to spend a good deal of time with this family once again.  They are now directors of Welcome Home Outreach in Baja.  They have been serving with this ministry for about 4 months now and we're excited to see how we can give them a hand and check out what God's doing through them. 

Please pray that our trip down would go smoothly, and that our time there would be used to encourage others in practical ways, and put Jesus' love on display. Also we've run into a bit of mechanical trouble with our van that we hope to have fixed by the time we leave...without too much expense.  I'm also not sure how Elijah will react to this sort of a trip.  Stability, and routine is very important to him so this may throw him off a little.  One benefit of taking the trailer is that we spent a lot of time this past summer camping and he understands the "camping" concept now. As far as he's concerned we're about to go camping in the snow ;)  The trailer should provide some security and continuity for him as we travel at least.  

 Soli Deo Gloria,


Anonymous said...

Wow! life has been busy for you. So happy for you and your new kitchen. I know that it's just of this world, but it makes me thank God everyday working in such a nice and easy to use place. Enjoy your trip. I hope to do that with my own family someday. I hope even start a tradition. :) Some time you should write a follow up to your "how to mess up orphans in Jesus name" post, and help out clueless people like myself who would like more information on how to help the best way possible. Happy Gotcha Day Silas! You are so blessed to be in a family who loves Jesus. (crazy as they are ;) )

Jenn @Treasuring Lifes Blessings said...

Beautiful kitchen! And hard to believe it's been a year since "gotcha day"! I loved following your last trip to Mexico and I look forward to reading up on your adventure this year. Prayers for a safe trip!

Chris said...

Hope your trip is fantastic...praying your little guy handles it all with grace...and LOVE the kitchen redo...what a marvelous job, and it only took a week
Blessings from cold Wisconsin. :)

Karen said...

CARLA!!! Your kitchen is amazing!! Also, I can't wait to meet Elijah, and see all of you :D Hope your trip down is fabulous!

Hannah said...

Always love hearing how y'all are doing! Blessings on your trip!