Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Garage Sales and Home Runs!!!

The following is an adoption update I sent to all our local contacts (about 325 people - WOW) last night. I wanted to post it here so all my online readers and friends would know about the sale and join us in prayer!

Hello to everyone tonight...
I just wanted to let some of you know and remind others that we have a wonderful yard sale (as an adoption fundraiser) planned for this Friday and Sat... May 1st and 2nd!

We have had quite a bit of stuff donated, but are still taking donations if any of you have items you'd like to donate.
The sale is going to be in at the . The Pastor and congregation have been so generous in allowing us to have our sale there... We are so blessed and thankful!

If you'd like to donate items you may drop them off at the church anytime after 4 on Thursday or call me ( and we'll come pick them up!!
Please pray for the upcoming sale that not only will finances be met, but that God will continue to use our story, our adoption, our lives to minister to others for him! The entire purpose of our lives is to give Glory and Honor to him!!
We have struggled a little lately in the "waiting." It's been 1 1/2 years since God spoke to our hearts... but, God is using this time to grow us and lots of others... and we know that HIS timing is ALWAYS perfect!!

Thank you for loving our family and supporting us as we obey God and fulfill what he's called us to do!

Please stop and say hi on Friday or Saturday. Just seeing faces who we know support and love us sometimes is such a blessing!!!

Clinging to his word and promises:
"And the Lord answered me: "Write the vision...For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end - it will NOT lie. If it seems slow, WAIT FOR IT; it will surely come; it will not delay." - Habakkuk 2:2-3

Many blessings!
Lanetta (and family)

I just also want to share how overwhelmed and amazed Phil and I have been already at the generous amount of donations we've received. The church is busting at the seams, and lots of people are dropping off more donations tomorrow... wow!! God is SO good!!!
I will take pictures and let you know how great the next few days are!!! We are exhausted, but excited at the same time to watch our story touch hearts and lives!!!

ok.. the Home run part of the title...
Bailey hit a home run in her game last night!! It was awesome, and she was SO excited!! Wow... I had to fight back the tears.... man o man I cry so easily when it's anything involving my kids!
and these days... just thinking about my Kaz. boy(s)... well.... emotional.. yeah, I'd say!

and if you are wondering.... yes, I'd be screaming out with happiness and telling all of you if we'd heard anything about our dossier.... Please pray that is moves soon..... please!
I sure would like to be able to share at the yard sale that our paperwork is in Kaz.... some sort of progress would be so nice.... God's timing is perfect.. right?!?

Monday, April 27, 2009

Land Run... The Smith Family found Land!!!

Here's a little Oklahoma history for ya' all!!! (:-))

April 22, 1889 was our state land run... Oklahoma territory was given away... it was quite a day for Oklahoma!

The 2nd graders re-enact the land run every year at high noon on April 22nd... It's a tradition in our little elementary school and the kids all look forward to it!

Bailey has been stressing for days about what she's going to wear... about what a pioneer woman did, etc... Bay has LOVED it.. and I had to share some pictures from the day.. It was SO hot, but the kids had a GREAT time!!!


Here's Mrs. Smith! Bay was so thrilled that she got to be the Mama of her group. The teachers divided the classes into familes.... and then they decided who played what role in their pioneer family.. Mama Smith was VERY proud of her baby (Hannah - she named it that cause it was a pioneer name :-)) and she was GREAT as the "mother" of their family!

Of course Brook had to sneak into a picture as well... She was fairly upset when she found out that the Pre-K kids DON'T have land runs... she knows she wants to get to dressed up for big school like Bay does next year... so sweet!

Here is Bay waitin' for high noon.... The Sooners had already gone ahead at this point.. and they had picked out a great spot under a shade tree!!! Mama Smith had the step - brother (sooner) all lined out already!!

The race is on... Mama Smith and baby Hannah running to catch the family that went on ahead of them....

Here's Mrs. Smith and baby Hannah looking for the family.. the Mama and baby were a little slowed down due to difficulties with their covered wagon!! Mama Smith quickly located the family... husband and kids... and found out that the step-son (sooner) had been arrested and did not get to the land they had picked out! She also quickly found Dad Smith and discovered that he had yet to find them ANY land.. (small piece of wood with a number, indicated available land!) Needless to say Mrs. Smith was NOT happy... but, she came through for her family and found land herself (SHE FOUND THE BLOCK!) It was hilarous... you'd have thought they staged or rehearsed the entire thing! :-)

Here is the Smith family. They are setting up camp for their lunch on their new land... Mrs. Smith is getting her cast iron and wash board out as well as their lunch of beef jerky, fried chicken, and biscuits!

After much hard work and family difficulties, the Smith's are now the proud owners of Land ~ Section 2 of Oklahoma Territory!

Bailey is singing.. they gathered round the wagon and sang LOTS of fun songs.... of course.. OKLAHOMA was top of the list!!!

The above 2 pictures are of Bay and her counsin Haden. Haden's Dad and I are first cousins... and his Mom and I are great friends! We have so many pictures like this of them together from birth through the last 8 years... fun, fun, fun!! They have a good time together!!

Hope you enjoyed our land run!!! Oklahoma is a great state and we're PROUD to call it out home!!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Will we ever hear any news?

"And the Lord answered me: "Write the vision...For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end - it will NOT lie. If it seems slow, WAIT FOR IT; it will surely come; it will not delay." - Habakkuk 2:2-3

Monday, April 20, 2009

Speech Therapy and International Adoption

This is a blog post that I've been going to post for several months, but just hadn't found the time, or done it yet. I've had several parents ask me questions regarding adoption/international adoption/ speech-language therapy lately.
I am a SLP (Speech-Language Pathologist) and work in the public school setting. I have to admit that this area (as you would suspect) is a HUGE interest to me...

Let me give you a little background... I graduated with my Master's in Speech-Language Pathology in 2002, and have been employed with the public school systems ever since! This is my 7th year as a SLP in the public school setting. Yes, not a lot of experience, but some at the same time. I remember NOTHING in undergraduate or graduate school about speech-language in internationally adopted kids. (This DOES NOT mean they didn't cover it... I've forgotten so much...) Yes, we did learn some about English as a second language, but mainly I remember that we can't/don't serve a child for speech-language delays/disorders, unless we know that this child has a delay that is not a direct result of lack of instruction in English.
Of course you have to be able to show on standardized testing that the child has a delay/disorder... and if the child isn't fluent or does not understand English.. well, you'd have to test him/her in the language they know and have been taught.... and if they don't have a delay in that area.. then NO, they wouldn't qualify for speech therapy.

As the months have passed and I've watched and read numerous families coming home with their babies/children from all over the world. My heart has argued with my brain. I have wondered how this is so... Isn't the job of a SLP to help the children COMMUNICATE?!?! I know that's my goal... to help the kids I serve communicate in their world around them... and if their speech/language skills are interfering with their academics/ communication with teachers and peers.... well, then yes, they need to be seen! :-)

I have been very interested to read things on this subject and have done a little research myself... trying to educate myself to what other SLP's are saying and thinking!

Basically, I want to help my friends and other adoptive families get the therapy they need for their children!

ASHA (American Speech-Hearing Association) is the association all SLP's must belong to in order to practice as an SLP and maintain their ccc's. There was an article over this exact subject in the ASHA journal a few months ago... and I wanted to share it with all of you.
Click HERE to read. (It's fairly long, so instead of posting it.. I'll let you go there and read it for yourself!)

It is a very well written article and gives some great answers to common MYTHS regarding speech-language and international adoption. The author is also an SLP and a fellow adopted mom.

I will be the first to admit that I AM NOT an expert in this area, but I want to see any and all children be able to communicate to their fullest potential! I would love to answer any questions anyone has about this issue.. and try to help if you have any questions.

Many Blessings,

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter...

First off I'd like to thank everyone for the awesome and overwhelming response we received about the day of prayer on Friday... We are so thrilled and know that our prayers were heard! I have been praying about asking you to join me in prayer every Friday... what do you guys think? I think there are so many things we should all be praying for regarding families, orphans, international adoption, etc... that if we as a body of believers agree to dedicate some serious time to prayer on Fridays (and all do that!)... God would be very pleased!! Let me know what you think... :-)

OK... so on to Easter!! Easter was incredible for us! It was raining and yucky weather, but we improvised and hid eggs all over Nana's den (my mom's house). I can confide here (with my network of adopted families who "get it" that I thought alot about my boy(s) in Kazakhstan... it just can't be helped. :-) At dinner... my nephew said he wanted to pray and Brook said she wanted to pray, and Bay said she wanted to pray.. so we decided to go around the table.. and all pray.. it was so special! Bailey prayed so perfectly for the day... about what the day (Easter) was and meant. She thanked God for what he did for us on the cross and then proceeded to pray for her brother(s) in Kazakhstan... (as you can imagine... I almost lost it here!) It always amazes me how the girls include them already... Those bubbas (or bubba) are already so loved! Surely this will be our last Easter without them... right? I thought that last year as well.. but, God has a plan!! :-)

OK... so I had my camera up and going.. and am going to share lots of pics from the day!!
Enjoy!! I hope and pray that all of you had a wonderful Easter!!

Here is the Easter Bunny spread! I started leaving "Easter Bunny" stuff on the table like this when Bay was a baby, and the tradition has continued! Mainly small things they needed... and Bailey asked for HSM 3 and Brook wanted a Nerf Gun.. (yeah, a nerf gun, just like her boy cousins!! She was THRILLED when she walked in and saw it... :-)!!! Easter Bunny gifts were a little more than normal, but oh well... why not spoil em'?

Here is a family picture of us that my mom took at her house.. I won't tell you how long it took us to get this.... oh my.. Brook wouldn't sit still.. and Phil and Bay were silly.. and well.... I seemed to be the only one who cared about getting a "good" picture!! (:-))

Our girls... Don't they look precious? Oh my.. if you only knew!? Some cute dresses, hair bows, and jewelry... we could fool anyone!!! ha ha

I still can't believe this is my baby girl ~ Wow! She's growing up so fast!! Phil hates pictures of her like this...

This is Bailey with my Mom (Nana)! They are really close. They always have a great time... you know Nana rocks!!

This is Brook with Nana! They are really close too... As you can see, they have lots of fun as well!

Nana with her Girls!

This is Brook with my nephew Cody... Any idea what they were doing? It's a wagon train/covered wagon... Notice the gun in Brooks lap! It's the Easter Bunny nerf gun... They went on a wagon ride and were protected from the dangerous animals!! Sometimes their conversations are so funny!! They live in the Brook and Cody land quite a bit!!!

Remember when I mentioned it was raining outside... well, we had our egg hunt indoors.. and hid the eggs anywhere we could... ha ha.. Phil was relaxing while we were hiding them... (instead of helping us :( ) and so we hid them all around him... in his pants legs, etc... The kids thought it was tons of fun.. and honestly, I never heard Phil complain.. cause he got to continue the position while the "hunt" was going on!! (Lucky dog!) :-)

Brook finding the "PRIZE" egg! (She had a HUGE tip from her Uncle Keith!) Keep in mind that this precious little girl in her Easter dress, tights and cute dress shoes... was carrying around a nerf gun all day!!! :-) Priceless!!

Have a Blessed Week!!
Many Blessings!
Lanetta and family

Thursday, April 9, 2009

A Day of Prayer...

We have decided to make tomorrow - April 10th, 2009 a Day of Prayer for Kazakhstan, for families in the country adopting, for families in the process (paper chase) and for our children waiting for us there. I feel like we should cover everything regarding the country, the officials, the consulate delays, and any and all other issues anyone can think of.

I have posted to our agency group, and wanted to open the day up to include anyone who would like to join us. The AWAA- Russia group has agreed to join us and pray for Kazakhstan tomorrow!

If you would like to join us in prayer tomorrow, or would like for us to include you and your family in our prayers.. please comment... leave the request or let us know that you also would like to be included!

Things and situations change when his children Pray... we are going to bombard heaven for our children....

The word says to do it.. and we are!!!! Please join us tomorrow and let's watch the power of prayer WORK!!!

Many blessings...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Phil.... I love you!!!

This post is dedicated to my wonderful hubby!!! (Isn't he the sexiest thing ever??? I sure do think so... man o man.. I love him!)

I just wanted all of you to know what an amazing and awesome husband God has blessed me with! We have stepped out and totally allowed God to stretch us so much lately... Phil has stepped up to the plate and been such a Godly man! I am honored and humbled to be his wife!

We attended a Marriage Encounter Weekend is Feb. of 2006. God used that weekend to change our lives totally and completely! We immediately knew that God was calling us to volunteer and help out in anyway possible with the ministry of Marriage Encounter. We have not missed a weekend yet.. we have even attended training and just finished our very first weekend as a presenting couple! WOW!!! It was amazing.... to see and hear the couples hearts and lives that were touched and changed a result of Phil and I sharing about our lives from our hearts... wow!! It was incredible!

After helping out at one of these weekends we always feel so much closer and more connected!!

There are AG Marriage Encounters all over the US.. in many states.. Check out the website... EVERY couple deserves to attend a weekend!

If you have ANY questions... we'd love to answer them...

I promise you have never attended a weekend like this... it's not a retreat, it's not church.. it's you reconnecting privately with your spouse... you will not believe how it will change your world!!!

We were also able to share about the adoption in our talks to the couples and in our talking with them... it was amazing! God opened numerous doors and we are so thankful.... It was very encouraging!!!

Are we discouraged?? Are we down?? Well, not always.. but, those times do happen... and those feelings come... What do we do?? Serve and Praise our Jesus with everything within us... keeping our eyes on HIM!!! Listen to the song.. playing in the background... that's us!!!!!
And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name, welcomes me!” Matt 18:5

Visit our website...

Click here to visit our website to read about how our journey to international adoption began... and how God spoke to our hearts to open our lives and family to a child who otherwise might not ever know him.
God bless!

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