Monday, June 19, 2017

1 Year of Puppy Fostering

One Year Ago we decided to do something to spring up some chaos in or home.  If you know anything about us, you know we kind of thrive on chaos. I guess things were getting a little too calm.  We hadn't had a dog in several years and while I knew we weren't ready for another dog yet, when I saw the rescue we got our June bug from seeking puppy fosters I thought it might be a great opportunity to help out and have a little furball to snuggle.  The weeks we were free, we could take in a pup but when we were busy or on vacation we didn't have to worry about getting a dog sitter.  Through the course of this first year we have fostered 32 puppies, mostly from high kill shelters in California and transported up here. All 32 pups found new permanent homes up here. I have even gotten updates on a few of them and it has been awesome to see how they are doing! 

We've learned a lot over the course of the year. Puppies are obviously a lot of work.  We've had hyper healthy puppies and we've even had a few sick pups along the line ranging from a runt with weak hips (who got a lot better over the course of the week) to serious issues such as parvo that when I dropped them off at the vet, there was a real concern he wouldn't make it (fortunately he and his brother recovered and came back to our home for 2 weeks and were adopted quickly after.  I've learned that sometimes two puppies is easier than one puppy (but not always).  I've learned that tarps under puppy pens and rubber gloves are a must!  I've learned that a whining puppy just wants to be with the pack and if you put the kennel right beside you at the bed most won't utter a peep.  I've seen puppies come in too scared to get out of their kennel and over the course of the week heal and love the kids and family life!  The best part has been seeing our kids.  Sure they sometimes get annoyed with them, but the responsibility is good for them and they shower those pups with love. The kids are learning to love and be gentle and caring.  The pups are learning that kids, even wild and crazy ones like mine are good!  There have been times that it is really hard for the kids to say goodbye to certain pups and I may have shed a tear or two saying goodbye to a few of my favorites too, but I can say with confidence that the experience has been very rewarding for our family and as tough as letting them go can be, it is rewarding knowing that another one will come and maybe we had a small part of saving a few pups lives along the way! 

Saturday, June 17, 2017

A Letter To My Husband On Father's Day

To My Husband,

I cannot even tell you how honored I feel that you are the father of my children.  I always knew you were a great man and would make a fantastic husband. What I didn't know was the incredible father you would become.  I remember conversations about kids and how you wanted "a couple".  I never dreamed you would be up for whatever crazy idea or "one more" idea I would bring your way.

I remember watching you fall in love with the orphan through our first adoption process.  I saw a passion building inside of you to love and protect those who needed a daddy.  I remember how nervous you were the night before we met our baby boy, wondering if you knew enough or had what it would take. When you held him in your arms the first time, you never even had to look back. It was love at first sight and my heart fell so much more in love with you watching you love our son!  

And then a few short months later, you took control in a very difficult situation. You were there for both of our baby boys when I was out of steam emotionally and physically. You were my rock when I didn't have the capacity to remember what the doctors were saying. You carried us through those really hard days.  I couldn't have made it through without you loving me and our boys. 

And then another short year later, when most men would have lost their minds, you were ready for the challenge.  3 kids in 24 months. I saw you melt into pieces when your first daughter was placed in your arms. I know you don't think you parent the girls any different than the boys, but those baby girls have you wrapped! I saw a new softer side of you when you became a parent of daughters. 

And finally, you became a father for the 4th time. And I have to say, I fell even more in love with you watching you with this little girl. You were an old pro by this point in time. But not only did you love our little girl, but you showed God's love profoundly to her first mama who hasn't had many men treat her well in life.  The good man you are shined through in those days.  

When I think about you as a father the word "present" comes to mind.  You work so hard to provide for all your families needs so that I can stay home with these kids. You never complain about anything. You don't come home demanding time to yourself.  You come home ready to be present for your family and relieve me.  You don't complain when the housework isn't done, but instead offer to help me get it done. You never complain even when you're tired and the kids are all over you and want your attention.  You're more than willing to take them to practices or help make dinner. You shower them with hugs and snuggles. They are secure knowing you will always be there for them.  To protect and guide and provide. 

No matter the circumstances you are present here with us and I know I can always rely on my faithful partner to be there for our kids. And there is no greater blessing in the world than having you as the wonderful father to my kids.  Thank you for always being up for my crazy ideas, whether it is another kid, yet another house project, or even fostering puppies. Thank you for working so hard to provide for our family so that my dream of being home with my children could come true! Thank you for being an example to our children and showing them daily in actions and words God's love for them.  You love me and our kids well and there is no greater gift in life than a husband who is a wonderful Godly, present father. 

Happy Father's Day to the man who has made all my dreams come true! 

Friday, June 16, 2017

Chicago Day 4 By Malachi

Today was our last day. We went on a walk to the pier. 

On the way there we saw water and parks and it was cool.

At the pier I got to go in the water

But when I was done, my pants were soaked. Just like this. 

Mom took a picture of the Navy Pier sign. I was just staring at things. 

The Pier was cool, we took pictures and had lunch there. We had a fun time. 

I took like hundreds of pictures of mommy and daddy because I just had to keep doing it and doing it and doing it. And it made me want to be funny.

We saw lots of boats at the pier. Not on the way there. It was a fun time. 

We saw a lot of cool stuff. We saw a ferris wheel and it was fun. 

When I ate lunch it was a giant tortilla, it was yummy. 

We saw canoes (kayaks) and the water. For some reason it was green. 

My trip to Chicago with Mommy and Daddy was the best trip ever.  Except for Disneyland. It was so much fun. I hope if you ever go there that you will have fun too. 

We went to the airport and got on a plane and flew back home. 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Chicago Day 3 - By Malachi

When we walked over to the museum, it was hot, super hot. 

On the way there we saw lots of boats and all sorts of cool stuff. 

We went to the museum (field museum).  And at the museum we met Harris. 

At the Museum there was a dinosaur. 

At the museum we had fun. We had lunch with Harris. When I first met Harris we had a great awesome time. Harris is an Ethiopian kid and he was in Ethiopia in the orphanage with me. 

We had fun and looked at mummies in ancient Egypt. 

And we took a picture and looked cool like cool bro's. 

And we looked at so many cool dinosaurs. They were awesome. 

We had a great time.

Dinner was fun with Harris. This was the last time I got to see him for the day.  We had a fun time in Chicago.