We've been home from Ethiopia since late Wednesday, but we haven't fully processed everything yet. While we had hoped to bring our daughter home with us, we instead left Ethiopia without passing court, the very reason for our trip. We were stunned, sad, and angry when we heard the news, and to be truthful, we still are a bit. But we are hoping in the One who is sovereign and good, even when it seems that injustice and evil are winning. We are hoping in His good plans for us and our daughter, and are praying that she will be comforted while we're apart, that she'll be kept safe and healthy, and that she'll be home with us soon.

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We met our daughter today! We saw her from a distance and she ran to us and gave us all big hugs. I saw her and the tears came and I frantically told Keith "oh no, my ugly cry is the first thing she's going to see!". 😂. She is so very sweet, confident, and happy. We go to court Monday and will finally be able to share photos of her sweet face. Still praying for a miracle so that we'll be able to bring her home this trip!

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Guess who's on his way to meet his new sister! This guy! (And me and Keith, too!) We could use prayers that the Ethiopian government will remove roadblocks so we can bring her home this trip. Can't wait to hug her either way. #toothless #adoptionrocks

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How did my little babies graduate kindergarten? #slowdowntime

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This girl turned nine months today and took her first tiny step. Up next: climbing trees and riding a bike with no training wheels. #justtryingtokeepup

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We finally opened the pool today and this girl went for her first ever swim. I can't even handle the rolls and cheeks and fluff 💕

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We had a wonderful Easter Sunday celebrating the resurrection and enjoying family time at my parents' farm. He is risen!

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1. Nesting is for adoptive mamas, too. I am nesting SO bad right now, trying to keep my mind off the fact that we are 1 document and (hopefully) just a few weeks from bringing our big girl home from Ethiopia. I seriously feel 100% as hormonally driven to have every. single. thing. perfect as I did when I was pregnant. 2. My husband is amazing. He’s been so sweet as I rearrange and paint and shop like a madman. He made the little daybed in our kitchen nook from two vintage bed frames after I came up with the plans in a particularly bad fit of nesting. He’s currently putting up beadboard in our laundry room. And cutting down a console table to fit our foyer. And making all kinds of long-needed repairs to the house. So maybe nesting is for adoptive dads, too. :) 3. Sweet Nolie Kate has decided that there’s too much crazy going on at our house for her to miss out on, so she’s decided to get moving. And she’s fast! 4. I have no idea how we survived the wait for our last adoption without four other littles at home to keep us busy. Half of me is 100% preoccupied with the whirlwind that’s always happening at home, and half of me is 100% wondering about our new little girl, praying she’ll be home soon. Adoption is crazy and painful and agonizing. But so worth it. #adoptionrocks

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So hammie got a much needed haircut, and every time I look at him I can't help thinking of Jim Halpert. #amiright #imisstheoffice

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Just finished up a few new growth charts. Get 'em while they're fresh 😉. Link in profile.

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Snoring like a pug. Couldn't be sweeter 💕 This girl is so adored.

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Hammie is completely obsessed with elephants. So when he saw this family of elephants in target last week, he made it his mission to buy it. He worked so hard all week long -asking for jobs around the house and getting them done all on his own- and earned enough to go buy them today. Could he smile any bigger? 😄

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And also, baby teeth! ❤️

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They match! #twinning

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My husband is amazing. #shiplap !

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Making gingerbread houses with cousins at the farm. Hammie was not at all interested in decorating his, he just wanted to eat it 😁.

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The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. - John 1:14. Wishing you all a joy-filled Christmas!

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Taking this third wheel on a date tonight. 💕

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Last year, I decided to try something new with our kids for Christmas. We cut waaay back on gifts, and instead gave them a booklet with a coupon for an activity for each month of the coming year. (Some coupons are for "bigger" things, like a visit to a museum, or a trip to sky zone, while some are freebies, like a baking class with me, or camping with daddy. There are also 12 coupons in the back that they can use anytime they want for things like a movie night, or having sprite with dinner (a big deal for our kids!), or going to the dollar store.) I wasn't sure how it would go over, but after a year of getting a family experience each month, they begged for another coupon book this year. I love the idea of giving experiences instead of stuff, and I love that we were able to enjoy fun family time all year long. This is our new must-have each Christmas!

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