Evie-bear--our strong-willed, JOY-filled, instrument of patience and growth! Evie is our youngest, but no longer our littlest in size or volume!! She is a total DELIGHT, but also the MOST challenging child that God has blessed us with! She has a will that holds its own against DAVE and I. She strives for attention...most of the day! She is growing in so many beautiful ways, though and we see the Lord growing her to obey, to show some self-control kindness to her big sis, Riah and she is becoming so creative and imaginative. She still mostly wants to be with mommy, but now is spending more and more time playing 'kitties' or other animals...or babies with her 2 older sisters. She can now color and do some puzzles without destroying everything...which is a huge step I need to remember and celebrate! This is a huge area of growth in the past 2 months! Evie is SO physical...she loves to laugh, she loves to be tickled and to be wrestled...and she is (not surprisingly) our first to get out of her crib!! After a week of disobeying..she is now choosing to obey and is super proud of herself for making good choices! She loves to pray and will often interrupt us with prayers, "Jesus, please bless Mommy and Daddy and Mommy and Daddy and the kids in 'Opia' ......" IT is so precious...I love watching their faith begin to grow! Evie is most excited for the babies and the goats in our front yard in Ethiopia!!
Riah Grace...joyful, compassionate, and our silly goose! Riah Grace...joyful, compassionate, and our silly goose! Riah is growing up so fast!! Doesn't she look like a little girl now? She doesn't look like a toddler anymore! Riah is an amazingly sweet, happy little girl! We are in awe of the growth and mind God has given her! She loves our little Preschool (chaos!) time and loves to dance, play with her Agi and pretend! She has really transformed from a fearful, frozen little one, to one who fully embraces and loves her family, her therapists and her days!! She had a second round of Botax in her calf and her arm muscles about 2 weeks ago and we are seeing positive results again...she is getting so strong and is so capable of almost everything any other 3 year old can do! Riah will be doing an intensive therapy in April before we get ready to leave. She will be casted (on her right side) for 3 weeks and will have intense occupational therapy for 3 HOURS a day in SEATTLE!! The results of this type of therapy have been amazing and we really see it as an opportunity we can't pass up for her...she is so willing to use her left hand in everything and we are praying and hoping she will gain strength and coordination during this therapy time. Please pray for us during this as it will be intense for all...one of us will be driving her back and forth to Seattle Childrens' Hospital each afternoon!! Thankfully, Dave will be DONE with work and we're ready to be a great team in this.
Maija...sweet, passion-filled little girl!! Maija is a DELIGHT!! She is coming out of her extreme moods of a three year old and is becoming a lovely 4 year old....She loves to dance, loves to pretend to be cheetahs, kitties, and all kinds of animals... Maija brings beauty as she enters a room...she is loving, sweet, so so adorable. She is a joy-bringer and such a love. Maija's heart is growing...she is learning and growing to be a beautiful big sister...nurturing, creative, loving, fun, fun, fun!! Today, her heart and mind have been filled with Jesus...everything is reminding her of Jesus or heaven....she is working on not sucking her thumb...it has broken my mommy's heart to see the sadness in her eyes...it is SO hard for her...it's a loss...of a friend, or a comfort that has been with her since she was a baby...she has embraced it today with bravery, though...and has chosen to serve. When she's getting too sad, she'll serve or bless me. I love this and am in awe. I see a life full of grace being formed in this little girl...she is looking to Soddo, as a four year old should, but with a little extra...she is so glad she'll be with her mommy--but she also wants to meet her new neighbor friend in Soddo and wants to build a house for the Soddo orphans....I love her heart.