Anderson’s First Birthday
You’d think after going through three first birthday’s so far I would be used to how fast they sneak up on me but I am still amazed at how fast they come. Andy celebrated his first birthday yesterday and we are so blessed to have him in our family.
He brings such joy to us on a daily basis we can hardly remember life without him now. Though he is not yet walking he is pulling himself up on anything high enough to grab. When he smiles his whole face lights up and two little dimples appear on both cheeks. He has begun to say a few words including, “hi”, “yes”, “pees (please)”, “dada”, “up”, and will attempt to copy most words you say to him, though they are not yet recognizable!
We just love our little Ander Bander and are so grateful to the Lord for this gift. Happy Birthday little man!
Trying to Find the Ground
I would have liked to title this blog entry something more like “Hitting the Ground Running” or “All the Ducks are in a Row”, but that just wouldn’t be the truth!
The last entry indicated that we were discharged from the NICU and were able to start heading back to Wisconsin with Maddie. Even though we could leave the hospital, we were still required to stay in the state until we were given clearance to come back to Wisconsin. There is a lot of red-tape and bureaucracy that slows down the process. Fortunately we were able to make a connection with some very gracious people at a camp on the edge of the state. We stayed with them for several nights and as soon as we got the OK, we put the pedal to the floor and headed back home.
It was a joyous reunion when the rest of the kids returned from Minnesota on Saturday morning, December 14th. I’m pretty sure they had all grown at least six inches during the three weeks we were gone. It took Andy a few minutes to remember who we were, but once he did, he wouldn’t let us put him down. The other three kids were just thrilled to be back with us. At one point Jack was crying, and said that he was just too happy. As a dad, I’m pretty sure that it solidified the idea in my mind that family is supposed to be TOGETHER.
Now that we are a few weeks out from all the excitement and confusion, April and I are trying to sort out what life is like with 5 kids age 6 and under. It’s a wonderful thing, no doubt. It’s a noisy, crazy, convoluted, exciting, busy thing!
Watching God tenderly guide, provide, protect, and care for us over the past two months has been truly breathtaking. I could list story after story of how things “just came together”... we know those are indications of how much He loves us, not just circumstances. If we’ve ever doubted that He is mighty to provide, this experience of adoption has been a bold reminder that He is strong. The way that He brought in the funds that we needed, right as we needed them is a testimony.
Since returning, we’ve made it to Christmas in Minnesota with the entire Schutt family (man, that’s a lot of people in one house!), Wintertainment (Camp’s weeklong High School camp during Christmas Break - Take a look at some of the media we produced for Wintertainment here and here), and a good visit with April’s parents over New Year’s.
Anyhow, we are back home. It’s good to be together. It’s good to be serving at Camp.
Thank you for your role in our story!
PS: In case we were wondering if God has a sense of humor… Our chocolate lab delivered 10 puppies two days ago! (She was bred before we knew anything about the adoption!)
It has been a long week since Madelyn was born and was brought to the NICU. We are so happy to say that we were finally discharged yesterday and the paperwork can now begin. We still have an unknown number of days here away from home but at least there is now progress being made for us to be able to leave. What we are now waiting on is the process called ICPC which means that the two states have to communicate with each other saying that it is ok for us to leave this state and travel back home. Our agency has said that it could take up to two weeks for this communication to happen but they have also seen it happen in as little as 5 days. We know the Lord already knows how long we are supposed to be here. We are just praying for patience while we wait!
Our agency has also informed us that we cannot post public pictures of Madelyn on facebook until the adoption has been finalized in a few months. I’ll tell you she is beautiful though! If you are just dying to see what she looks like you can send me your email address at email@example.com and we would be happy to add you to our missionary update emails. I can assure you there will be pictures of her in there!
Thank you all for your prayers. We have felt a tremendous amount of support. To Him be the glory!