Monday, January 31, 2011

Blessings in the snow...

As we are waiting for the snow...we are warmed up remembering all that HE had done...

41.  winter winds while safe inside

42.  Li's blanket, fresh out of the dryer

43.  home made laundry soap

44.  the calm before the storm

45.  movie night with the yahoos

46.  a fresh bowl of popcorn

47.  2nd chances

48.  Jeff's "hmmmmmmmmm" that makes my heart flutter

49.  Li's cartwheels

50.  Li's favorite song...over and over and over again!

The story of Li...

Lili is yahoo number three. She came to us as a 6 day old baby. She was scheduled to stay just two months while her birthmama tried to get her life in order. Li was the hardest baby we have EVER cared for....and we have cared for quite a few. This kid would SCREAM the whole time she was awake. Constantly. Nothing would stop her...until she fell asleep...exahusted. Honestly...there were many, many days we looked forward to her heading back to birthmama. Sometimes we felt as though we had been taken hostage by this kid. There were days the girls and I would huddle in a corner of the house and pray. 

But she did not leave. Her birthmama could not care for her, and asked us to become her guardians. We said we would.  But it was a difficult decision to make.  We wanted to do what we could to love this little thing, and we wanted to honor God in how we lived our life.  We knew that if she had come to us biologically, we would not be wondering if we should "keep" her.  So she stayed.  And we prayed, trusting the Lord would provide the capacity and the wisdom to love her in the ways she needed to be loved. 

You see, LiLi has sensory disorder. She would scream in a desperate attempt to cope with her senses. She would scream at a truck passing by, scream if someone tried to tickle her arm in a friendly gesture...scream at toilet flushing in the church restroom, and scream at the friendly YMCA nursery worker who was merely trying to help her feel more at home.

We did not understand her at all.  Finally, when she was about 2 years old, we found help through a therapist who worked with her, and with us, week after week, helping her learn to cope with "life."  Li learned how to manage the things that frightened her, and by the end of the year she was amazed by the trucks, giggled at the toilets, and looked forward to hanging out with the Y nursery workers.  And we learned that a bear hug was much more effective.
After working with the therapist for a year, we decided to try preschool.  It was a rough start, but slowly Li began to feel safe.  She started making friends.  A daily schedule helped Li.  Occasionally there a transistion she could not manage.  When she hit a wall, her teachers knew how she would react, and learned how to usurp "the scream!" 

Li has come a long way.  We have learned what she needs to help her cope.  LiLi needs to move...a lot!  We have enrolled her in swim class and gymnastics.  When she is not in gymnastics, she is practicing all of her moves.  Constantly.

We have her scheduled to do something everyday.  If she has a day off, we have to take her somewhere to keep moving.  If we are stuck at home she is sent outdoors unless the weather is impossible.  Some days I make her run steps, do jumping jacks, or forward rolls all the way down the hall.  If she starts to struggle, Jeff grabs her legs and makes her walk on her hands.  He may throw her on the coach a half a dozen times.  We will load up the laundry basket with her baby sister and a pile of toys and have her push it all over the house....just to keep those senses under control.

Last night Jeff and I were a little overwhelmed by Li.  She wanted bedtime to go a certain way, the way it usually goes, and it was not.  She had discovered the plan while Jeff was discussing it with the other yahoo involved.  Her big sister was not going to bed at the same time, and she was not happy.  She was in her room, doing her crazy dance, trying not to scream

Her scream, at this time of night, is very, very, very hard to take.  We were all tired.  We all wanted to curl up in our beds, and enjoy our bedtime rituals.  So when LiLi did scream, we all wanted to join in.  And quite frankly, sometimes we do!

Last night both of us grown ups could have gone down that path.  Oh...I so wanted to jump up and start hollering at them all.  I wanted to hop all over the floor and throw a temper tantrum.  And so did Jeff. 

But God grabbed a hold of our hearts.
He whispered to us...

Look at your Li.  Look at her through MY eyes.
I made her.  I created her...just for you.  I created her just to help you see...

Li experiences life, in a way, perhaps, we all should. 

Li experiences life...fully.

Every inch of her being experiences life....fully.

While we are sleepwalking through the day...
Li chooses to DANCE!

Our little LiLi, the kid who sucked the life right out of us....
 is one who now teaches us how to LIVE.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Giveaway at Household Cents!

My Funny Frugal Farmer Friend, Tanya is having a giveaway!

I really like Tanya.
She has great things to say about this e-book.
Stop by and see what Household Cents is all about!

Friday, January 28, 2011

It's those little things....

that can brighten up your day!

Cute little snowman nail polish!

Good for a gloomy winter's pick me up!

If the girls in your life are a bit crazed and need something to do, get out some bright colored nail polish and paint their piggies!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

One Happy Penguin

The last week of January.
This little guy would greet me every morning when I would pull open the kitchen window blinds.
One more month, and I can begin to dream of spring.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sacred Silliness...

We howl with laughter at the joke we just created.

No one else would understand it.

I think of it now and it makes me see him behave in such a silly way.

Just like him.

A full grown man, embracing the little boy that still flourishes inside.

That little boy drives me insane some days.  Ok...a lot of days.  And I sit now and wonder why?

That little boy brings me joy in the midst of such pain.

What a gift that grin is to me.  That deep, rumbling chortle that bubbles up from inside his middle aged belly.

Oh, I like him oh so much!

It still shocks me that he choose me to do this with...

live out the days,

worshiping God,

playing house with all these kids.

What a blessing.

I am so glad.  HE choose him.  For me.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Counting the blessings....

Ten at a time...

A Thousand Endless Gifts!

31.  Kiki's glabbering.  Or was it gabblering?

32.  just Jeff!

33.  Jethro (ask Tanya)

34.  looking down to find just the right words...

35.  Mae's tears as she thoughtfully contemplates her life without the violin,
       and her smile when she chooses to pick it up and keep at it even though it is hard to do.

36.  A medium McDonald's hot chocolate in the middle of a blustery cold day

37.  string cheese

38.  the Newlyweds

39.  Neighbor Baby

40.  My Vera Bradley Tall Tote.  It is the Perfect Tote Bag!

Monday, January 17, 2011

A Thousand Endless Gifts...

21.  Jeff

22.  Mac

23.  Mae

24.  LiLi

25.  Kiki

26.  the birthmamas who entrusted our precious yahoos into our care...

27.  all the other yahoos who have come and gone in between...

28.  God our Father of our Lord Jesus Christ...who adopted us into HIS family...

29.  The Word of God which nourishes us and refreshes us every day...

30.  the body of Christ..our eternal family

Saturday, January 15, 2011

New address!

Hey there!  I have moved my Kat n Kompany blog!  I am in the middle of updating please be patient!  Our old address did not match the name, so I thought it might be a good idea to move it!  Our new address is!  If you had grabbed our blogger has the old address in if you could please delete the old one...
and grab the new one....which I just posted to the right ------>>>
Thanks for hanging in there with us while we clean things up!


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Fun Favorite Finds!

Aren't these adorable?  I found them at that dollar bin section when you first walk into the store!  They were marked down to twenty five cents apiece!  They had many cream truck, fire truck, race car...choo-choo train, and a helicopter!

Looking at them makes me think of Julie Andrews marching around singing....
"These are a few of my favorite things...."

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


Check out Tanga. It's a great website.  Everyday they e-mail a few super great deals for you to choose from.  Usually they have a choice of magazines, jewelry, and really fun all kind
is of other "stuff!"



Check it out!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Sometimes the little things...

The girls gave me this sweet little card for my birthday!

When you open it find a birthday cake and candles.
Pretty basic, right?
When you pull the card open a bit  more...the candles light up!

A view of the card in the dark!  Isn't that neat!  I love it!

I had a lovely birthday.  Jeff and the yahoos made my favorite Snickers Cake.
Then they made home made ice cream with Mae's new Ice Cream machine!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Five a month goals...

A fellow blogger friend started this plan...and I have decided to join in on the fun.  You choose five goals that you would like to achieve in the month.  They can be ANYTHING from organzing your house, to developing a spiritual discipline, to dieting.  List them on your blog...or on a mirror...or in a notebook...At the end of the month reasses how you are doing. If you are at all interested in trying to make five goals a month...check out Jessica's post! 

Here are the five goals for the month of January.
1. Read my One Year Bible Everyday.
2. Memorize Colossians verses...two a week.
3. Work with LiLi on learning/writing her alphabet.
4. Clean/organize my desk.
5. Write a note of encouragement every week.

Thanks, Jessica for challenging us and giving us a way to find some accountability in these things!

Thousand Endless Gifts 11-20

Week #2 in our List of Endless Gifts...

11. pretty little notebooks to write our Endless Gifts in...

12.  friends to keep you on the straight and narrow...

13.  lunchtime hugs from hubby...

14.  my afternoon cup of pink milk...

15.  whispers shared between little people...

16.  whispers shared between myself and my little people...

17.  Kiki's kiss....mmmmwwwwaaahhh!

18.  old movies to share with old friends...

19.  waking up to those sweet brown eyes peering back at me...

20.  having them all come safely back home again...

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Reflections of 2010: Part 1

I have been thinking a lot about this past year.  2010.  It just seems like A LOT happened in 2010.  A LOT of hard things, and a few wonderful things.  I guess I am trying to make sense out it all. And these things...these hard things and wonderful things all seem to be connected somehow.  I think.  I am asking the Lord to show us what He is up to in all of this.  I guess I am kind of thinking out loud, and bringing you along for the ride.  If you dare.  So here we go.

Yahoo Number Three (LiLi)...came to us from an organization called Safe Families.  At some point I'll share with you more about this amazing kid and all the Lord has taught us through her life.  Quite frankly, she has been a hand full, and a year into her life we thought we may had reached our kid limit.  Actually, Jeff was done, and I was fretting about it.  I do not ever feel like I am done.  But in the summer of 2009, we felt the Lord calling us to trust Him in all things, started working with Safe Families once more.  We once again opened our home to these little ones who need a safe place to stay for a bit.  And I was in awe of my husband.  Opening up our home again was, for him, was a huge leap of faith.  He was trusting the Lord would provide us with everything we would need, to care for the yahoos we had, and the yahoos who may come for a visit!

Last March we were asked to care for a 9 month old girl for a few weeks.  After a few months went by, it became apparent that birth mom would not be able to care for her, and by July of 2010, we were being asked to become guardians of another little sweetheart. Jeff, who had been saying all along he would NOT add a forth permanent child to our family, was befuddled. We were in over our heads with yahoo number three.  How in the world could we manage this?

But God made it clear that this little girl needed a family.  Birth mom even went through the heartache of seeking extended family for help.  It became clear there was no one.  She wanted us to be the guardians. She asked us to keep her.   Jeff, ever my hero, decided that walking in obedience to God's word....loving those in need and taking care of those who cannot care for themselves, was what he should do, even though he felt as though he did not want to do it. He walked in faith, in obedience, even though it was difficult, and not at all what he really wanted to do.  Complete and total obedience.  Sheer faith.  Doing what he was asked to do only because it was the right thing to do.

You see, before yahoo number four came along, we were struggling with patience. Jeff and I were really struggling with how we were responding to the three yahoos we had been blessed with and the craziness that is our household. We were raising our voices and just loosing patience much too quickly.  It started affecting the kids.  THEY were screaming and shouting, too.  Not good, right?  Jeff and I would even say to each other..."We can't live this way.  This isn't right."

Now, Jeff is one of those laid back kind of guys who just kind of reacts to life as it happens. He is a pretty willing guy.  If you have something that needs to be done, he will probably do it for you. But he has not been someone who purposefully and actively looks for ways to serve or lead. He does not like to make decisions.  He just serves as he goes...know what I mean?

Do you have a hubby like this? 

Laid back.  Easy going.  Funny.  Adorable.  Indecisive.  And honestly...kind of hard to....follow.. 

Don't get me wrong, I LOVE so much him.  He is open hearted and willing.  He is always helping someone, somehow.  It's just...he helps in a one-day-at-a-time kind of way.  And the days just seems to race by.  It's not really like the blind leading the blind.  It's more like an aimless happy helpful wandering goose leading a gaggle of goofy gossipy geese.

Funny how FOUR little yahoos can shake up that mentality a bit. Adding that fourth yahoo put us in crises mode.  The decibel levels hit an all time high.  Our level headed preteen suddenly became a hormonal mess.  Yahoo number two became an vicious victim.  LiLi learned how to use words as a weapon.  And Kiki, the new addition, discovered the fine art of whining.  I have to say, she is our most "pathetic" yahoo.

What in the world were we going to do?  There was no way to ignore the situation anymore.  Just "responding" to every incident was NOT enough.  It was ineffective.  We hit meltdown.  I remember sitting in the car, listening to all the girls bicker.  Jeff lost his cool. I started to sob.  He pulled over.  I remember trembling, wondering if I should actually say what I thought.  The words puddled out of my mouth..."I do not want this anymore.  No more, God.  No more."  The girls were stunned.  Total silence.

Something HAD to change.  Jeff grabbed my hand and started to pray for us...all of us...that God would help us walk in love and kindness.  That He would change us, change each one of us, into selfless loving lights in this dark world.  It was a start.

I started praying more fervently for Jeff.  I started begging God to help me know how to help Jeff.  I pulled out my copy of  "The Power of a Praying Wife."  A book that walked you through the power of praying scripture for your husband.  A book that encouraged you to see your husband through the Lord's eyes.  A book that encouraged me to come alongside  Jeff so he might fulfill the role God has given him, in our family, in our church, in our community, in our world.

Jeff started to pray more fervently with me and to work purposefully, daily, on how he was speaking to his kids. He started holding me accountable and seeking the Lord in ways I have never seen him do lovingly...and in a way that makes me want to be a better person, a better mother, a better wife.  When a skirmish starts, the man is there, patiently guiding the perpetrators through the motions.  What would be the best way to react?  How could we do this better?  What would the Lord say about this?  How can you show kindness in this situation?

And my favorite...(not really)
Kat, STOP!  STOP talking.  It is doing no one any good!

I have to say....I have always adored my hubby...but my respect for him has grown so much over the last 6 months.  Watching him trust the Lord with all these things makes me feel safe.  It makes ME want to trust the Lord, too.  Watching him become more of a Godly man makes me want to become more of a Godly wife.  A wife that can come alongside him, and help him

And you know what?  We are all learning how to talk to each other.  We are all learning to listen to each other.  We are all learning how to work through conflict.  We are all learning to "be of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on ONE purpose." Phil. 2:2
We are learning to...'do nothing from selfishness or vain conceit." Phil. 2:3

My girls are beginning to..."regard one another as more important than themselves..." and "look out for the interests of others." Phil. 2:3-4

And Jeff, my dear sweet Jeff, has been a living example of..."working out his salvation with fear and trembling..for it is God at work in him, to will and to work for His good pleasure." Phil 2:13

Monday, January 3, 2011

The Thousand, Endless Gifts...

I stumbled upon this blog post by Ann Voskamp and have been smitten by her simple, warm, worshipful writing.  She has been compiling a list of endless gifts for two years now. Since it is the new year, I thought  we might join her!

Part of a prayerful, worshipful life is being thankful for all that He has bestowed upon us.  How much time do you spend reflecting on all that is good in your life?  Too often our minds dwell on the negative...and our words and actions reflect those dark thoughts as well. 

So we begin the new year, with a new list...of what we are grateful for...

A Thousand Endless Gifts!

1. crazy colored cozy socks

2. swinging in the hammock while reading a favorite book

3. the way Jeff says my name

4.  playful puppy dogs

5.  sleepy puppy dogs

6.  Mae's sweet voice singing thru the darkness from the back of the truck

7.  Mac's steady, reasurring presence

8.  listening to the little one learning new words

9.  my old NASB Bible, pages worn with tears and hope from the very beginning until now

10.  Celebrating the New Year with dear friends

Happy New Year, dear friends.