Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Momma was I......?

A couple of weeks ago I had an interesting coversation with Michael over breakfast. Actually, he was eating and I was getting stuff ready for school! So this conversation totally caught me off guard.

Michael is HUGE on looking at pictures... he drags out the albums once or twice a week and just sits and pours over the pages. The night before he had been looking at one of his favorites... the album that holds the pictures of our trip to China to bring him home. As he was eating he asked, "Where was Cam when I came home from China?"

"Well," I answered, "remember Cam was born AFTER you came home from China. We have the pictures of you holding him in the hospital."

"I know that," he replied. "But WHERE was he?"

"Oh, well, he was in Chandra's tummy."

"Why?" he asked. And at that point my heart began to sink a little as I replied, "Michael, that is where all babies grow, in a momma's tummy."

He sat there for a few minutes and looked up at me and said, "Did I grow in YOUR tummy?" And I must say, my heart sank a little farther as I said, "No, Michael you didn't. Remember, we came to China to get you."

"Oh, well, whose tummy did I grow in?" As I looked at my little boy, sitting there with his syrup lips and mik mustache... I answered him as truthfully as I could. "Michael, you had a mommy in China, and you grew in her tummy. But she wasn't able to keep you, so she made sure that you were in a place where we could find you and bring you to live with us."

Again, he sat there very thoughtfully and asked, "Why couldn't she keep me?" Wow, how do you answer that question? So I told him, "I'm not sure buddy, because she was in China and I was in America, so we never met. But I am sure that she loved you, and she wanted to make sure that you came to live with us."

And as my heart was breaking a little bit for my son, he looked up at me with a big smile and said, "And you picked me, right?" "Yes, Michael, we picked you."

Then he said, "When you looked at my picture, did you say, 'He's perfect?' " "Yes, Michael, we said that you were perfect for our family."

And with that, he went back to eating his pancakes, and drinking his milk, chattering on and on about school and what he would do that day.

I have to believe that Michael's "China mom" loved him... how could you carry a child for 9 months and not love them?

I have to believe that as she looked at his little face on the day he was born, and saw that he had been born "imperfect" in a society that values perfection, that she STILL loved him, and that she was crushed to have left him on the doorstep of a children's hospital. Afterall, she did leave him AT the hospital, where he could be found and cared for.

I have to believe that she wonders about him to this day, and I pray that she will somehow know that the little boy she carried is safe with a family who finds him a perfect fit.

And I'm sure that this question will arise again, as all such questions do... and I will teach him that growing in a tummy isn't nearly as important as growing in a heart... and that he has been "growing in my heart" since the day I saw his little face on my computer and we were told that he was ours.

I have a feeling that there will be more questions that will require hard answers as he continues to grow.... and I pray that God will always provide us with answers that will build Michael up... because sometimes the truth is just plain ugly.


Friday, April 23, 2010

Baby Bird Update

Just a couple of pictures to show how the babies are growing!!! What a difference a week can make!!!

All snuggled up and safe and sound... momma wasn't too happy about the picture taking... but hey... gotta show off the kids!!!


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Another Sign of Summer

We are huge bird feeders here at the Neal home! We have two "seed feeders", one in the front and one in the back... and during the spring, we put 2 hummingbird feeders out front. The number of birds we feed is astounding. And the types that come are numerous. We feed ALL year long... we get a little lax when berry season is in swing because they don't hit the feeders as much.

We have cardinals, black capped chickadees, tufted titmouse, nuthatch, blue birds, blue jays, woodpeckers, house wrens, sparrows, mockingbirds, mourning doves, rofus sided towhees, cowbirds, redwinged blackbirds... and robins are everywhere (see the previous post for more about those!) But you get the picture... we have birds galore! And we just love to watch all the bird activity around our home.

Every spring we eagerly await the sighting of the first hummingbird. My mom and I make a point of letting the other one know when they have arrived. This year, Mickey was the lucky one to see the first bird. Over the years our numbers have grown... with one pair the first year we put out a feeder to 3 pair last year. We have even found where they nest... and the construction of those little nests is amazing. So after the sighting on Monday, today I had Mickey bring up the feeders and I've filled them with yummy sugar water to draw them in (4 parts water, 1 part sugar... more than that will damage their little livers!) Can't wait for them to make their appearance at the feeders... it is just another sign that summer is right around the corner!!!

Next up... planting some flower!!! Yay!!!!


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Wonderful weekend and a glimpse into new life!

Had a great weekend. On Friday, my dear friend Rebecca called me to tell me that while at Women of Joy in Louisville she was able to get a free ticket to the concert on Saturday night - Steven Curtis Chapman and Michael W. Smith. She asked if I was interested... are you KIDDING ME!!! Oh yeah!!! She said to cross my fingers because she had to make sure she could get the arm bands that went with it.

So Saturday, Michael and I head out to run our errands, and between stores my phone rings... Rebecca says... I got the ticket AND the bracelet... and then we both screamed! Poor Michael... he just held his little ears. Then we realized that not only could I go to the concert, but I would be able to go to the Worship Service on Sunday morning - featuring Liz Curtis Higgs!!! Oh my... I LOVE this woman. So I sent a text to Sha, who was able to cover my Sunday School class... and I was all set.

I must say I was totally blessed by this weekend... it was amazing... and just what I needed. So a huge thanks to Rebecca for asking me to go... and to the gracious unknown woman who gave me such a wonderful gift!!! I sent word with her friends to thank her for me... she was an angel this weekend for sure!

So after we went to lunch today, I headed out into the yard to do a little weeding while Mickey washed the cars. He noticed a robin that was trying to make its way into one of our holly bushes. He took a peek and this is what he found....

Three newly hatched baby robins.... and they were so tiny and bald... with just a few pin feathers...

It is always so uplifting to see new life... be it a little baby... or a baby bird... it makes me stand in awe of our Creator... and on the heals of Women of Joy... all I can say is that it was a perfect way to end the weekend!


Friday, April 16, 2010

Latest Project

Finished a little sweater for Emma. A vintage pattern.. probably 1950's.

Love the subtle design on the front...

...and it fit Emma nicely!

One happy girl!


Monday, April 5, 2010

Just a few pictures to share from Easter weekend. God has so richly blessed Mickey and I... and we are truly thankful for all that he has given us. Especially this family! What a blessing they are!


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Just wanted to share a few pictures with you... first, Emma Rose with her Birthday cake.

Then... all our kids! Aren't they all just precious?! It is funny when look at this picture... there are just so many years between them all! And Michael, he is one lucky little boy having so many big sisters to watch over him!

And here is my mom, or Gram as the kids call her... and Kailyn added into the mix. I was taking the picture or there would have been four generations!!!! And Emma was too busy running around playing to get in on the "girl" shot!

Looking forward to this weekend, and celebrating Easter. All the kids and grands will be here, and it looks like the day will be a nice one. We have an Easter service to attend... eggs for hunting... and a great meal planned.
Friday night, our church, Greenville Christian, will be holding a Good Friday service at 7. The Ensemble will be singing, and both Carly and I are taking part. It will be a great way to begin the Easter weekend. At our final practice last night, a mother and son from our church practiced their duet... and I must tell you... it was amazing! The words to the song were just so powerful... Enjoy! Oh yeah... kleenex alert!!!!