Thursday, February 28, 2008


Thank you so much for your prayers for the family that I mentioned in the previous post and for your words of encouragement and prayers for me. Keep them coming! This morning was declared a protect my mental health day! A day to just stop and take a moment to get my house back in order and to let my mind be free. It has been a day of blessing and enjoying my sweet children and my heart is thankful. We played up at the church and then over at my mom's house for awhile. I got in some much needed sister time with Becky. I am hoping we can do some more of this tomorrow!!! I am very thankful for the flex-schedule that Christian Homes provides, which allows me to take some time to regroup before diving back in. They are such a wonderful agency and I am so honored to be serving with them.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

This has been a difficult week. My last post had Randy and I in the middle of a wonderful conference. Saturday night I received a phone call that a birthmother that I have been working with for the last several months had gone into labor. The next morning I received a phone call that there had been severe complications from a c-section and that she was dying. The baby was healthy but his mother was not going to make it through the day. I went quickly to the hospital. By the time I was there, she was no longer responsive. The nurse said it was possible that she could still hear. I had seen pictures of the baby and I told her how beautiful he was. I told her she had done a wonderful thing by making a plan for this baby's life and that we would do everything possible to make certain that her wishes for him were fulfilled. I found myself with my hand on her forehead praying for peace and mercy. She passed away Sunday evening. In the days that have followed there has been great grief and shock and diverse reactions as to what should happen now. My heart is heavy and I am tired. I love my job and I am thankful for the provision that comes through it. I love being in a position to minister hope and to be light in the darkness. Even so, today I find myself wrestling and striving to find the energy to press on. I know the Lord will renew me tomorrow but this is where I am today.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Randy and I are enjoying a great conference this weekend. We are Advocare Distributors and we are attending their Leadership Training Conference this weekend here in Fort Worth. We have been using the Advocare products for many years and they have made a wonderful difference in our lives. The Speakers and the testimonies have been amazing and we have been so blessed. Today we were challenged and encouraged by John Maxwell to be intentional about adding value to the lives of others. He talked about the Characteristics of Highly Successful people and what they are doing that sets them apart and allows them to make a difference in the lives of people. We add value to people's lives when we serve them. His words truly resonated in our hearts. I am sure I will be sharing more about the things that we learned from the conference in future posts. Tomorrow we will be led in worship by Michael W. Smith at the conference and we will hear some more great speakers before we close out in the afternoon.

Our sweet 4 children have been enjoying some quality time with their grandparents and we are deeply grateful that my parents are enjoying them too!

Monday, February 18, 2008

This blog has officially become my own. Randy now has his really cool Marketing Blog. Notice the link on the side and be sure to go and check it out. I had fun working with Amanda at to help me with a new look.

Pressing On is reflective of the themes of my life right now as we continue this transition. It has now been 8 months and I still feel very disoriented. I consider it progress that I can at least recognize that my lapse of memory and my inability to be organized and remember simple recipes that used to be a part of my weekly routine, have to do with my entire world completely changing. The land where I "grew up" as a mother, cook, teacher, and organizer of my home was Benin. I am still learning how to do this in America and the transition seems so challenging even still. Sometimes it seems easier to be learning and remembering completely new things, as in my work with Christian Homes than it is to remember or re-learn things that it seems I should already know.

In the stillness of my heart I feel the peaceful presence of the Lord gently leading me to press on one step at a time. I am so thankful for the stablizing presence of the Lord.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

My Sweet Valentine

I had a wonderful Valentine's Day!!! I am married to my Sweetheart....I am absolutely crazy about him. He is my best friend. It is so rare that we have time to ourselves, just the two of us. I can't remember the last time that we had a real date...we always talk about wanting this to happen and we have just not been able to work it out....well a sweet blessing came our way!!!

On this day we were given the sweetest gift by some very very special to go to a very nice restaurant and the best most fun childcare....we were so supremely blessed and so were our kids. Later in the day, I received from my sweet husband a special delivery of chocolate strawberries...unfortunately, everyone was happy to share these with me!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day, Kelly!!

I love my wife so very much. I am crazy about her for more reasons than I can count. But I had to share a few here (think of this as Randy climbing up and shouting it out from the rooftop - I am not going to literally do that because of safety reasons).

Our kids absolutely adore their mother! When she walks in the door, after being away for even an hour, they run to her with arms open wide and cannot get enough hugs and kisses! They love their Momma and they love to shower her with love (I think she's been a very good example of that to them!) While making sure their clothes match every morning can never be underrated (honestly, it's the job I do the worst in our family), outfitting our children is hardly on the radar when I think of remarkable things that Kelly does for the kids. She makes each one feel loved and special. She speaks to them in ways that I never do (well, don't do enough). She is firm and yet always aware that her words have power and influence. I love watching the ways she praises the kids and the ways she touches the heart of every one of our kids. She has this incredible sense of knowing exactly what they need (I tend to bark alot).

At this time in our life, we are enjoying a family dynamic that might not work for other couples, but it's what we both love. Kelly absolutely loves her job with Christian Homes and Family Services...I mean, can you imagine a better job for Kelly than one that is focused on adoption!?!! She is a perfect fit and I know all of her team at CHFS knows that (you guys are great to work with!!) She is so good at speaking to groups about the adoption story and she is already proving that she is an incredible voice of hope to potential adoptive parents. But I can tell you that Kelly's servant spirit is never more clear and her mercy and compassion are quietly the most evident when she is working with birth mothers. I am so proud of the stories I hear and the words that I hear come from her mouth when she is interacting with these young ladies. While others may continue to stare with condemnation, Kelly gently reminds these often frightened and confused young women of the profound maturity of their decision to make the best choice for their child. The world continues to tell these ladies to shrug the maturity but Kelly and the CHFS team (and other adoption advocates) certainly provide a voice of hope. I'm proud that we are affiliated with CHFS and I love that Kelly is in the job she is in!

Kelly enjoys a unique model with CHFS that permits both of us to work based out of our home. We love it! We both live a full day juggling work (in and out of the house) and 4 kids - but we can't imagine it any other way. We 100% share in every responsibility that we enjoy as parents. This is totally fun and exhausting at the same time! And while I get my marketing company off the ground, I am so thankful that Kelly is not only willing to work, but she loves what she does. Honestly, if she didn't do what she does, I could not be enjoying the joy of launching a lifelong dream. That thrills me and I am so grateful for the provision that God is giving our family. I know Kelly enjoys her profession so much, but I also know she would be great in any role (paid or unpaid) where she is serving, speaking and demonstrating love, hope and mercy.

I am continually thankful for my wife's faith. While this year of transition has stretched and challenged our faith more than any other year in recent memory, we both know that the preceding years of solid faith-building experiences are helping us through these days. I love it that Kelly lives her life completely, fully connected to the Lord. She is authentic in her struggles and deep in her commitment to pressing on. We enjoy the blessing of walking with God!

ALSO - I can announce to everyone that Kelly has been chosen as this year's FORT WORTH CHRISTIAN Alumnus of the Year!! I'm so proud of her and we will celebrate this recognition at FWC's Celebration Dinner on March 28 (2 days after Kelly's BD!)

Happy Valentine's Day Kelly !! I am the most blessed man in the land...actually as we say (since it was the walking-down-the-aisle-as-we-were-pronounced-husband-&-wife-song), I am still the Lucky One!


Sunday, February 03, 2008

About 2 months ago Randy and I heard about the "Hannah Montana 3D Concert Movie" that was coming to town for one week only (this week). We are not intense crazy fans but we do enjoy the Hannah Montana TV show when we have the chance to see it and we thought seeing the movie would be fun. Because of the Hannah hype we knew to buy tickets early and we felt more comfortable knowing the movie tickets were a set price. Randy bought the tickets for Tori and I just after Christmas and we chose not to tell Tori about it until today. This morning I told Tori that she and I were going to have a fun afternoon together and she was thrilled to hear what we were doing. We arrived to find out that this week the HM movie is completely sold out and we were "lucky" to have tickets. We walked right in and were still surprised when we saw the people lined up outside the doors of the theater. People had come hours earlier to make sure they were among the first to be let in so that they would have a good seat. Tori and I quickly realized we were the most relaxed in this group of intense Hannah Montana fans. Little girls and their mothers were all dressed up, many of them wearing pink or blond wigs. This was defintely an atmosphere that Tori and I are not accustomed too!! Once we were inside and seated in the theater, we were reminded by the employees that this is not a movie and that we were free to get up and dance and sing and enjoy the concert! The theater was full of screaming squealing little girls chanting Hannah! Hannah! Hannah! Tori was a bit reluctant which was fine with me!!:) We put on our 3D glasses and totally enjoyed the show! Although Tori preferred not to dance in the aisles, I did have the joy of hearing her sing along with all her heart, knowing all the words to all these songs. That was fun! I love hearing her sing. We had a great afternoon together enjoying something fun and this was a blessing for both of us. We are so thankful that Randy was persistent in finding out about the tickets and getting them early and that he gave Tori and I the treat of this time together. What a great Daddy he is!

When I got home, Randy immediately headed out the door to a SuperBowl party with friends. Tori, Timo, Jonathan, Lael and myself met my mom for dinner at Boston Market and then headed over to my parents house for some more playtime. We are back at home and getting ready for bed. This has been a full weekend and we are tired.

God is so good and his presence is so real. This weekend I have needed him to be directing my every step, thought, and conversation. He has been completely faithful. I encourage you to trust him more with whatever challenge you are facing. He is more than sufficient...but we never know if we do not place ourselves in situations where he can demonstrate this power. I feel so blessed to know him. Expect His blessing this week. Anticipate experiencing Him. He will not dissapoint.

Vote for the Best Super Bowl Ad

Randy's got a new marketing blog and on it you can vote for your favorite Super Bowl ad! Go vote!