A sparrow when I'm broken, and eagle when I fly.....

Welcome to my world. I am an ordinary wife and mom who has been extraordinarily blessed by an amazing husband and house full of beautiful children. My prayer is that you will be somehow blessed by our family's story. It is a tale of God's grace and forgiveness...His loving kindness and patience with us His children as we strive & struggle everyday to bless His name with our lives

Saturday, August 30, 2008

confessions of a die hard homeschooler

A week ago we made a life altering decision. Our camping trip to Jubilee Lake was cut short due to heavy rain storms up in the mountains. We were all sad (and wet) at our washed up vacation. It turned out for the good as we wound up having a very busy weekend at home. Friday morning I nervously approached Mike to share with him my fears about homeschooling the kids this year.

1)I still believe with every fiber of my being that home educating our children is the very best and most ideal choice for them.
2)The last few years have been rough on a lot of things with Jonathan’s illness and death. I was away from home in hospitals with Jonathan so very much and that alone affected the homeschooling.
3)I had thought we would be doing a lot of catching up with school stuff this summer. But we haven’t. Mostly it has been catching up with relationship stuff. My “littles” have needed a lot of mommy time to feel loved and safe. My teens as well have needed some good one on one times of just having fun, shopping, and talking.
4)I had really thought that by now in this crazy grief process stuff….that I would be better. Not so fragile. Not so emotional and needy. I am needy in that I need MORE of everything to function. More sleep. More quiet time with the Lord. More long walks in solitude with my Savior. MORE GOD in every waking second. Living in and through the great sadness learning how to be without Jonathan seems to suck way more energy than I ever imagined. I get less done than ever before. The kid’s needs are met. Mikes needs are mostly met. But there is nothing left of me for homeschooling right now.
5)I was nervous to talk to Mike about my fear that homeschooling the kids wasn’t going to work this year. In reality Mike was relieved when I told him. He felt the same way I did but was hesitant to hurt me. Yes, I would have been felt like an even bigger failure if Mike had told me first; that he thought I wasn’t up to homeschooling this year. Somehow it was better for my self esteem that I was the one to bring it up.

So, instead of spending a long weekend at the Lake, I ran around town enrolling kids in school and “back-to-school” shopping. The kids are all excited and had a good first week of school. I have been adjusting this week to the whole idea. Tamar MyHao is in Kindergarden. Maggie, Josiah and Berhanu in 1st grade. Miriam and Anna in 2nd grade. Meseret in 5th grade. Tigist in 9th at High School. Yasab is still homeschooled in 8th grade. Michael in 11th at Running Start at the college. Solomon will be starting West Side Preschool three mornings a week!

Mike says I am not a failure. He reminds me we always have said that we will be open every year to whatever is the very best thing for each and every child. This is the best thing now for the whole family. I am so thankful the awesome moms and dads I know who raise wonderful Christian children IN public school. It helps me to see your example! It helps me to know this will be okay.

We are heading out the door to Goldendale, be back in a couple days!

Love, Julee

Monday, August 18, 2008

my new blog

Here is photo of our current smaller family, just thirteen of us living at home. We can all fit in the 15 passenger van now.

I decided to finally catch up to the rest of the world and start a “blog”. I started our newsletter yahoo group in 2001 during our first adoption of Anna from China. Many of you have walked beside us since the beginning. You’ve gone through our “virgin” adoption walk of a screaming grieving toddler and on to adoptions of every other kind. You’ve been beside us as we brought home deathly ill babies and we went without sleep for months on end. You bore with my whining and impatience during the long waits for every new child. You have listened to my worries of parenting scarred and abused older children and my complaints of angry teenagers. You have prayed with us as we limped through Jonathan’s battle with aplastic anemia; and you wept with us at his death after the bone marrow transplant. I hope too that along with my struggles you have also shared in our joy and awe at how God has taken two very flawed people like Mike and I, and created a wondrous thing. Every family is miracle and every child a blessing. Mike and I still marvel God brought us together as a family and chose to make us HIS people. That He chose to make us so RICH in blessings and children, that He LOVES us so much. He uses us in our puny weakness and grows us up into HIM through each and every adventure and battle. I pray that you will continue to share in our unfolding story and that God would bless your life through it.
Thanks for being interested enough to read what I write and for supporting us with your friendship. Keep praying for us. God is ALWAYS good. It is just very hard still sometimes missing our Jonathan. It feels like we are doing good hard “grief” work. It is a summer of learning to live a lot of changes. Jonathan gone forever….. Mommy back home fulltime after being away so much with Jonathan….. Big girls Hope, Haimanot, and Roza gone at Job Core. This week we are going camping at Jubilee Lake. With the medical challenges of the last few years we haven’t been there in a long time. I am so excited to be there. It will be some of the kid’s first time fishing and swimming in lake. And we can count on it being cooler on top of the mountain than the 104 degrees it is here at home.
Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance,