Saturday, December 22, 2012

Kate’s Adoption Story - A promise fulfilled

My sweet girl Kate turns 5 this week, she is my little Christmas miracle.  As I reflect back on the story of how she came to be my daughter I can’t help but get choked up.  I can't believe it’s been 5 years since we got the phone call that her birth mother was in labor and that SHE (we didn’t know the sex of the baby) would be here soon.  We had been chosen by her birth mother and father to parent their sweet baby girl 4 months prior and it was a LONG wait.  It was a full on roller coaster ride of emotions.  Not only did we get pregnant with Ella just one month after the match (yes with the help of fertility drugs) but half way through the wait our agency was closed down.  We had to rush to figure out a plan to work with the old agency AND a new lawyer to make it happen, a HUGE feat.  It could, it SHOULD have fallen apart but it didn’t - God was faithful.

After she was born we had to wait 24hrs before her birth mother was ready for us to come up to the hospital.  You would have thought those 24hrs were longer than the 4 months we had already waited.  It was torture but we wanted to honor her wishes.  So we waited, we prayed and dreamed about the life we would have with our new daughter.  We first met her birth mother and father along with their two children (Kate was in the nursery at that time).  The FIRST thing her birth father said to me was, “We are sure about this please don’t worry, we are not changing our minds."  I was shocked those were his first words, words of comfort from a man going through one of the hardest decision of his life and he was more worried about us than himself.  This was the first clue that Kate was coming from some of the most selfless people I’ve ever met.  We got to spend a good amount of time with her family and then they called down to have Kate brought up. Her birth father, brother, and sister went down stairs and waited....

The door opened and Kate was brought in.   She was in her tiny hospital cradle, wrapped like a little burrito with a tiny hat on her sweet round head.  I couldn't  believe my eyes - she was so beautiful.  I didn’t know what to do so or how to act so I just walked over put my hand on her belly and smiled at her.  I remember thinking to myself, hello little girl, I am your mommy.  Her birth mother had little emotion before Kate was brought in but when she saw how much I loved her daughter she turned radiant - I will never forget her look, she was SO proud of what she created.  I could see her pain start to ease (even if only for a second) as she saw the love I had for Kate.

After a few minutes I asked if I could hold her and her birth mother said of course - so I did.  I scooped that sweet baby girl into my arms and I melted.  She was more than I could have ever dreamed or asked for.  She had the roundest face with a tiny crease between her big blue eyes.  My arms were full, my heart was happy and my life would never be the same.  But my heart was also heavy for the great loss that her birth mother was feeling.  However, it wouldn’t be until I gave birth to Ella a few months later that I would FULLY understand the loss that she felt that day.  I have prayed every day for the last 5 years that her birth mother would feel in her spirit that her sweet baby girl was well taken care of and loved deeply.  I prayed for comfort for her and for peace that passes all understanding.  And mostly I prayed for good to follow her family the rest of their days.  I think of them often and I think of them most when the holiday’s are upon us.  There are no words that are adequate to express my gratitude to her parents - they chose LIFE for their baby girl over death.  And they chose to give her a life they would not be able to give her but most of all, they chose us.

After our meeting with Kate we went down stairs to be with her brother and sister while her parents signed all the documents.  Her siblings were nothing but pure joy.  Two of the most well behaved and kind children I had ever met and I hoped in those moments that one day we would meet again.  After the paper work was signed her birth mother was discharged and they came down stairs to where we were.  They gathered their children and walked over to us.  Her mother gave me a hug, no words just a hug and turned to walk away.  She didn’t need to say anything - I knew.  Her father walked over to us, gave us both a hug and with tears in his eyes he said one final thing “take care of my girl.”  I nodded to him and there was nothing else to be said, no more papers to be signed and no more worry.  God had all 7 of us wrapped in his loving arms.

That was the night a true love story started.  Beauty from ashes, a life of hope and promise for one tiny girl and two new parents.....

To Kate;
XOXO my sweet baby girl, Kate Isabella.  The world is a better place with you in it.  I use to cradle you in my arms and hold you as tight as I could, there were times when I was holding you that I would cry so hard with joy that my body hurt physically hurt.  I just could NOT believe that you were mine.  The deep connection I have to you pierces every inch of my body.  Just as Christ adopted us into his family you are an every day reminder of his love and perfect will for our lives.  I will end this blog tonight how by saying what I say on each of your birthdays when I give you some love on Facebook (ha-ha) - Kate Isabella Blondell, you are dearly loved.....

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Chalkboard Words and Prosperity Gospel

In our house we have two huge chalk boards.  One is in the kids play room for them to use and one is for "adult fun.”  For all the adults who want to bring it back old school they can play on this’s pretty awesome.  (Now to the point of my story) We have a small problem with saying words that aren’t really cuss words per-say but our elementary school teacher friend said that we would totally get in trouble at school if we said them.  So we put those words up on the chalkboard in a circle with a line going through them and then our names next to it.  Each time we use the words when we are around each other we laugh go to the chalk board and put an X by our name.  It’s really a running joke EXCEPT one word on there (check out number 9 on the list);

1.  Freaking
2.  Butt - in any reference
3.  Crap
4.  “B.S”
5.  Heck
6.  “P.O.S”
7.  Flippin
8.  Stupid
Last but NOT least

Prosperity gospel is NO joke around here.  We don’t like to use these words in our house.  Mainly because we feel it's just not biblical.  Not from what we read or study from the bible.  Does the Lord want you healthy...of course...sometimes he heals you miraculously and sometimes he uses a doctor, HE IS GOD AND WE ARE NOT.  But he sure doesn’t want you “rich” and I won’t even go into the ridiculous amount of scriptures that back this put up.  The reality is this - Jesus was NOT exaggerating when he said the road is narrow and MANY will be shocked on judgement day.  We are living our American lives trying to keep up with the Jones.  We try to fill our lives full of stuff and we are sitting in the nurseries of our churches drinking spiritual milk.  We are ugly to each other when we don’t agree on issues.  We don’t help the poor, the widows, the orphans or the homeless.  We throw money at things and think that’s enough.  But the reality is this, God needs you.  He needs to you to say YES to his gospel.  To go to the ends of the earth to preach his love and save lives.  Millions upon millions are dying every single day in 3rd world countries and right here in America, almost none of who know the name of Jesus and who are damned to a life in Hell.  And we close our eyes and pretend it isn’t happening.  I am guilty.  We all are guilty.  My heart is heavy today for those in our own community that need Jesus.  The reason why so many other countries are seeing revival is because they are SO POOR that all they have is Jesus. They have a child like faith.  God is good, he is gracious and our salvation is NOT at stake here but we have to wake up, get off the spiritual milk and starting eating the meat of the gospel.  It doesn’t always feel good.  It doesn’t always feel safe.  You will not always be “rich” but that’s not what Jesus promised.  But he did promise that he will be with you and that there would always be enough and thats enough for me.  Start taking in widows, single moms, orphans and the poor and start seeing Jesus in their eyes.  Start sharing your faith to your friends and your family.  And do it in LOVE not out of a religious obligation but out of a pure love.

I will finish with a portion of a sermon by a man who lived Jesus.  If you don’t know who Keith Green is, look him up, he’s worth reading about.

Selfish, "Blessed"
and Feelings-Oriented "Converts"

Anyone who is made to believe he becomes a Christian under such preaching will seldom bring forth the true fruits of a real convert.

He will remain just as selfish as he always was, only now his selfishness will take on a religious form. If he wants something for himself, he will say he "has a burden" for something, or he will say, "It is the desire of my heart," or some other religious-sounding phrase like that.

He will pray selfishly, desiring blessings for himself, and even if he does pray for others, it usually will be for selfish reasons. After all, when he "accepted the Lord," he was told how much Jesus wanted to bless him and how much God had stored up for his account, and how the Bible was like "a checkbook full of promises, just waiting to be cashed!"

Such a person always seeks to "feel" good about himself, his own church, his own pastor, etc. His whole world is built on feeling blessed. He was never shown how he was created to bless God... God was not created to bless him. (Ps 149:4; Phil. 2:13)

And here is a picture of the chalkboard just so you have an idea of how fun it is.....


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Are we going to Die in our Religion? Or are we going to die in our Devotion?

This except from a sermon preached by David Platt a few years ago has ROCKED my WORLD today (the video is linked below).  I can not get it out of my head.

Two days ago my husband and I sat at our dining room table in our “new” house after a particularly emotional day/week.  As we talked he broke down.  Our church, our family, our lives, and our “things” are not enough and they never will be.  You see, we are at the top.  And the top does not satisfy like the “American Dream” promises.  Our serving others in need (like our churches should do) and our Devotion to God is the only thing that will truly satisfy our hunger.  This quote comes to mind and I think speaks directly to this issue;

Are we settling for Christianity that revolves around catering to ourselves when the central message of Christianity is actually about abandoning ourselves?”   -DP

If you have 4 minutes to spare, please watch this video, it will change you.


p.s.: We go to Haiti in 20 days, please keep us in your prayers as we prepare for whats in store.  And please, particularly pray for my vertigo as we go - it sometimes acts up when I am at different altitudes.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Picture Tuesday.....

I haven’t posted very many pictures recently (actually I haven’t posted at all recently) so I thought I would be an overly obnoxious mom and post some pictures of my super awesome kids.  Yep, I said it....they are awesome.  I think most people look at me a 29 year old with 4 kids under the age of 4 and pity me but I swear when I say that the more kids you have the easier it is.  When you have one kid its ALL consuming.  They need 100% of your attention at all times, or you at least think that you have to give them 100% attention at all times.  When you have two they quickly learn that they can’t always have momma all the time.  When you have 3 (well, I wouldn’t know I’ve never only had 3 kids)....but when you have 4 kids all your kids know momma is stretched thin and I swear they give me a break because of it ha-ha.  The big girls help me SO much with the twins and the twins are SUCH good babies that is hard to complain at all.  My only issue still is getting out alone with all 4 kids because having two babies in public is just hard....lets not sugar coat it haha.

I’ve had a few mommy moments lately.  My big girls, Kate and Ella, are changing schools next year to go to a WONDERFUL VPK program that they got into (pre-kindgergarden for those who don’t live in Florida).  Which means we are leaving our beloved Little Shepherds Pre-School.  We have had A LOT of wonderful memories over the last 4 years at Little Shepherds.  They got me through a lot of hard times when Kate and Ella were babies.  Their 2 year old teachers walked with me while I went through the IVF process last year and cheered me on the whole time.  And this year Kate and Ella’s 3 year old teachers really were there for my girls when the twins where born.  They helped us get through a rough few first months with two newborns.  We truly have been blessed by some pretty amazing people.  Anyways, enough mommy stories haha.....on to the good stuff - Some updated pictures of 4 pretty cool kids

Ella, Nolan, Nora and Kate

Little Man Nolan 

The twins

Ella and Kate’s on their last day at Little Shepherds Pre-School **tear**

And last but not least this a proud momma moment - The girls, Kate (4) and Ella (3), saying the Lords prayer....

Okay well thats all for now.  I have a lot to post about our new house (we hope to move in, in 3 weeks)  I can’t wait to post pictures and we can’t wait to actually get into the house and start enjoying it! =))


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Yes Yes Yes....

“Something is wrong when our lives make sense to unbelievers.” - FC
Love this quote so much from Francis Chan.  I’ve been watching and listen to a lot of his sermons on You Tube recently and they are just awesome.  But this quote struck me the most.  Our lives shouldn’t make sense to unbelievers.  I keep having to remind myself of this when I start to feel self conscious about our decisions as a family and about decision we stand on as a family.  Love love love....


Sunday, April 29, 2012


I just found this book again recently and I am re-reading it.  It is called Radical by David Platt.  Watch this video - it is pretty raw and changing.


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Lord, please continue to break my heart for what breaks yours...

Today I saw a man on the side of the road.  He was crippled, clearly.  He was asking for food, not money. Then I saw the lights on the cop car - flashing bright it pulled over and a woman got out.  I don't know what she said but I imagine she told him to get out of here, you can't ask for things here, it's illegal.  My heart sank I'm sure he had no where to go, no roof over his head, no food on the table, no family - but maybe he did.  That wasn't for me to know right then.  All I knew was that my heart hurt.  My friend said it best today, "they are people, not objects to be tolerated."  There is so much pain on the sides of the road, so much pain in this world.  I pray that God will continue to move Brett and I and our family into the mission field in the years to come.  Lord come, bring us every day new mercies and grace for those in need.


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Dress Up Headquarters

Dress Up Headquarters

Just wanted to post this because I'm SO doing this for the girls! =))

Tuesday, April 3, 2012


We have our lead paint/pipe inspection, 4 point home inspection and our termite inspection tomorrow.  Praying for all to go well and there isn't any major issues to be addressed.  If it all passes then we will be ready to move ahead with closing.  We are scheduled to close on April 30th but we will be able to close much sooner if everything goes well tomorrow.  So please pray with us as we ask God to protect our new house.

As far as our current house goes, we had our apprasal today.  We should know what it's going to come in at in a few days.  Praying for the right number so we can list it on MLS and hopefully get a few bites.  We have 3 people we know are at least semi interested at this point which is a huge blessing.  We know that God has this under control and we are trusting in him to help us sell our house.  He always provides and we know he will walk with us through this time in our lives as we strive to serve him with all our hearts.


Monday, March 26, 2012

Wait on what he says....

It's that simple....

Awaken 12 revival at our church this week has been awesome.  Tonight was so powerful - bathing our plans in prayer - waiting on God....then doing what he says.

Prayer, prayer and more prayer that's what we will be doing over the next few months.

I have so much to say.....will write again very soon.  I just need to get my thoughts together a little bit more! =)


Sunday, March 25, 2012


This week at Highland Park Church we are having a revival called Awakening.  My husband and I have started the week off fasting/praying for God to show us some big things.  We are confident that God will come and "awaken" us to new things.  We are moving forward in our thinking and allowing God to lead our paths.  I'm not scared - this is the first time in my  life I feel I like ok God you have this....may your will be done.  Whatever that means....


Friday, March 23, 2012

And some sweet pictures because having 4 kids really is good stuff...

Our sweethearts - Kate and Ella

Kate being an awesome big sister!

The Twins - February 14th, 2012

Bathing Beauty - Nora March 2012

Happy Nolan March 2012

And because having a twin isn't always what its cracked up to be...

God, Come Like The Rain.....

That is my cry, my prayer, my heart.  That God would come, stir me up and move me with such intensity that going back to who I am/was would never be a possibility.

What if Jesus told you to "sell all you have, give to the poor and come, follow me" would you do it?  Could you do it?  I'm not so sure I could, which aches me to no end.  But I am sure that God is calling Brett and I right now, maybe it's something here, maybe it's something in another country.  Maybe it's "down sizing" and giving more to the poor.  But the reality is, money is NOT the answer - Jesus is.  Love is.

Right now Brett and I are searching, seeking, looking for ways to serve and ways that we can bring our children with us.  The reality is...we have 4 kids.  Thats who we are, thats what God has give us and we are a family unit.  Will that mean putting our kids in more risky situations for the sake of his kingdom...maybe?  But I would rather be in the protection of God's will rather than thinking I'm in God's will and really not be.

So Lord, you know the plans you have for us.  Move us, shake us, allow us to be open to your calling.  Your provision over our family has always been and will always continue to be the reason we trust that your plans are better than our own.

Lord I beg you to continue to break our hearts for what breaks yours....


Friday, February 17, 2012's been a long time....

Well the twins are 3 months old now and we are finally on an awesome schedule.  I feel like I have SO much to say about what a great experience having twins has been but I'll try and keep it short for now.  I'll be back to blogging more now that I actually have a few minutes to myself during set "nap times."

The babies are doing SO SO well.  First off they are HUGE.  Nolan is now in 6 month clothing and Nora isn't too far behind.  They eat 4 to 5 ounces every 3 hours and go to bed at 7 sleep until 3/4am then go back down after a bottle for another 4/5 hours.  I have some awesome little sleepers and I give all the credit of that to my awesome nanny, Marina.  She is the freaking baby whisper - I swear.  I ADORE her.  She will be leaving us in April and I'm very sad but she's on to her next set of twins in California....oh the life of a baby nurse ;).

Nolan is such a ham.  He has the sweetest smile, when he smiles his whole body smilies.  My first son is such a joy in my life I can't imagine my life without him.  I can tell he is going to be pretty laid back - he's a great baby.  Nora is also a wonderful baby.  She only cries when she's tried of hungry.  She also just started smiling and it melts a momma's heart to see her sweet face light up.  She is the spitting image of Ella (minus the red hair) and is so tiny and sweet.  I think she is going to be pretty laid back too - like her daddy.

Speaking of Daddy - my husband is one amazing father.  He blows me away.  He works so hard all week, tons of nights, tons of emotionally draining work (working for a church) but always comes home with a smile.  Always comes home willing and wanting to please his children and me.  He is the best father and husband I could ask for - God is good.  Brett is starting classes to be come an ordained minister this summer and I couldn't be more proud of him.  He is so smart, sweet and kind.  He has a humble heart and big talent.  I just know that God is working on big things for his life.  Maybe we will end up in Haiti one day as missionaries...maybe we will stay right where we are.  Whatever it is, I love that my husband has a open heart to follow God's direction.

I wanted to add the monthly pictures of the twins from birth to 3 months so you can get an idea of how much they have grown.  It's pretty amazing if you ask me! =)