Tuesday, April 19, 2016

I see.

Oh bless. Jesus. You are so captivating in the most astounding ways. You use my fleshly struggles to see my need for more of your breathing, life changing spirit. I see. When my 2.5 year old took a rock to my van, his precious face devastated by his Mamas fierce anger. His innocent help of "washing" the van was a $1,000 worth of damage. It was bad. But it was worst that my flesh flashed into overdrive anger. "Oh Jesus I want to be more like you" it is a daily cry of the deepest parts of my heart. And He is showing me through my 2.5 year old. I want more Jesus. I want so much more of you. I know that daily I come to you with rocks and stones and scratches and dents where I have so innocently tried to make something better only letting my human flesh make more of a mess. Yet never do you see my hearts honest try and respond with Anger. Oh Jesus you see the beauty of me trying, you see my hearts desire to make it better. You step back, you look at the scratched van and your face lights up with joy. You cup my face, I realize I have made a mess I began to weep, you wipe my tears, lift my face up and dance with joy. "Don't you see child, I'll take this mess and make it my beauty..." 
I am pressing in deep into the Fathers heart, may I respond to my child the way My Father responds to me. 

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Small words for a big story....

When I go to write about this I feel as though I am swimming in a sea of words. There are so many words that could be used to describe our journey, but honestly...they are not, well they feel like they are not adequate or anointed or good enough. I wonder, if the scholars of Scripture often felt the same way. 

We had an opportunity to share our story.  It is such a gift to me, however. I still feel as though we failed at truly describing the sweet journey of our boy Jaden. His life, chosen, wanted, fought for. He is a little boy with BIG life journies ahead of him. How I got chosen to be his mama I will never know. 

Our journey is still not complete and I believe Gods redemptive love will shine through as He unfolds our story. For now. My heart loves these women who feel as though there is one choice. We cannot forget the women as we set out to save the baby. In fact I believe with my whole heart we are called to love the woman to save the baby. This is a life passion for me. But for now, God is calling me to stay focused on the path He has me on, the path of raising these small warriors of Gods Kingdom. 
Check out our video here: 

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Bring it.

I am almost intimated to open my blog. The blank screen and screaming words inside my heart just leave me overwhelmed. So normally, I walk away. I am up early this morning (surprise!) I was suppose to go on a 80mi bike ride. Its raining...and me already on a bike, on the road,is death defying, I decided not to factor in the rain. So I am going to hop on my trainer for a littler bit before we are in full swing of Saturday morning activities.

If you follow me at all you know my struggle of early mornings, quiet times, being still...finding a balance in the middle of a crazy cyclone that is my life. yeah...I still haven't found it. I have quiet times (surprise!) and they are sweet sweet moments, and they happen everyday from around 12:30-2 when Asa naps and Kars lays down with me and watches a couple of shows. And you know what I do? Well let me tell you what I DON'T do...I do not pull out my Bible, I do not catch up on overwhelming never ending house work, I do not sit in silence...no....none of those things. I catch up on Gilmore girls, or facebook stalk, or look at all the fun creative things of pinterest....that I WILL CLEARLY NEVER DO. Yes....this is it.  I don't know why I am telling you all of this...(again, whoever the you is) I think because I desperately want others to know the struggle is real and you are not alone...because from what I understand this is a normal struggle for most. And I am not saying that it is ok, but I am also not saying it is not ok (confused? yeah me too...why are you still reading?) I think what I am trying to say is that God is in the daily moments, even in giving me the 1.5 hrs to shut my brain off, to not think about the house, or kids, or struggles. I bring Jesus into my every moment. I cry out to Him daily.

Lately the struggle has been real with my Jaden boy. Now here is where writing can be a bit intimidating. My honest-open book-say whatever-leave it on the table- personality wants to share some of my struggles of being an adoptive mom. To be honest I don't think we (adopted mommas) talk enough about what it looks like on the inside. One because we never want our kids to feel different, out of place...or that we love them differently...although...all those things are true...and two...its their lives...their story...their future, past and present that I opening up about...I NEED to be protective. I will say these things though. Jaden is a 110% ours, he was the moment we learned of him, and the love for him was so very easy. Jaden, is 110% adopted, that fact although I do not spend my every waking day with Jaden thinking about that...that is a fact.  He was birthed from Liesl, he has a birth family that we recognize and honor, he has a story unlike any of my other children....So when it comes to loving Jaden...clearly I love him differently. I pray for him differently, I cry out to God for him differently. And although I do this for all my children we cannot pretend that this is not a BIG thing in Jaden's life.

Jaden turned 6 a couple of months ago...and its like his little world became a lot bigger and not so little. And these big thoughts were becoming very real for Jaden...he is trying to figure them out, to put them together...can you even imagine doing this at 6? At any age really....I cannot. As months go by and as the journey continues one thing is clear. God is after this boys heart. I can clearly see it in our everyday interaction with Jaden. You know what else I see? Satan hates it. HATES. IT. Never not once have we ever spoken words of Jaden that sound anything like this: "Jaden, you are not good enough to be a Tanner.." I cringe even typing those words. Yet. My 6 year old son in a moment of anger and frustration will scream similar words. How? How does he know such words to gather up and throw at his parents? We do not watch shows that say those words, or speak those words...Satan. You whispering, sleazy, no good..stealer and liar. We have been countering these words with Gods words and truth. Speaking them over him as often as we can, teaching him the difference between truth and lies...and what a lesson it has been for this mom. Daily. I struggle with the same thing I just do not voice them as loud or as vocal as my innocent child. No...I harbor them down deep and tie them up to the corners of my soul and pretend they do not exist. It is pitiful. I'm over it.

So. Here it is. A fight for my sons heart and soul is on. I know it is on for each of them. Choosing to raise them as warriors is going right up against satan himself. With Jaden I am taking on generational sins, anger, and brokenness and putting an end to it. It ends with JADEN. It will not be carried on.  These endless battles are exhausting but they are needed (so is the glass of wine each day...) And when I adopted Jaden, I as his mom and Kevin as his dad said "this boy...he is Gods." Watch out world. Jaden is coming.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

25 Things you can Do with YOUR Animal for the Stable

This years to do list for sweet Gabe. Now depending on the day this may change. I will probably switch it up and not go in this particular order. One other thing Gabe will be doing is encouraging the kids to do one act of kindness a day. I found a calendar with some great ideas!
1. Gabe arrives, sets out The Greatest Gift book and ornaments to go with it and brings out the star that he will hide each day for them to find.
2. Lines up animals in a fun way- I'll probably do something with Jaden's Starwars and Ty's minions....
3. Hides candy canes all over the house for them to find
4. Builds a snowman out of marshmallows
5. Pulls out their Legos and builds them a Lego set up (Kevin will help with this 😉)
6. Builds their train track and rides the train
7. Leaves things to make a gingerbread house
8. Leaves a ticket to see Christmas lights (I print one off the computer) hot chocolate, and popcorn. Also check outhttp://www.tackylighttour.com/home.aspx?SiteOverride=Desktop we did this last year and it was so fun!
9. Makes cookie dough and leaves cookie cutters, icing, and sprinkles
10. Leaves them a mission to get some toys for a child who doesn't have any
11. Leaves them a ticket to buy a doughnut at Kings. (A local donut shop...)
12. Paper and craft supply's to make Christmas cards
13. Sets up all the animals to read the Christmas story
14. Colors them a picture and leaves out crayons for them to color one
15. Leaves craft materials to do a Christmas craft
16. Strings more Christmas lights in their room
17. Blows up red and green balloons to play with
18. Leaves their jackets out to go take a walk and look at Christmas lights
19. Leaves them money to buy their brothers Christmas gifts
20. Spells out a message using M&Ms
21. Leaves a new Christmas book to read
22. Leaves popcorn out for movie night
23. Leaves streamers out and construction paper- they get to decorate dad as a tree!
24. Leaves Christmas Pjs, and a Christmas movie
There are so many awesome ideas out there. Please please share your amazing ideas and what you did for your littles this Christmas!!!

Secrets from the Stable.

Y'all, I can't even. There are no words. My heart it explodes, that of all the people in the world God chose me to be the outlet. I will never in a million years understand it.  We are working to get a website up that will be a one stop place with all the information. For now please feel free to ask questions. I know many of you have them so here are a few answers to the questions I am most hearing.

1. Where do I buy this?
This is not a kit or something you buy. (I dream...but that's up to Jesus.) For now, the beauty of this is all you need to buy is a lamb, goat, donkey, owl, camel, duck, horse, or any other animal that could be found in a stable. The other day my sister and I even created a story line for a pig....Coming soon friends!!

2. How do I do this?
What I love most about this is it is catered and designed to fit YOUR family because YOU and Jesus know your family and what your kids will respond to best. Best advice. You CANNOT mess this up. So find freedom in it. The animals come bearing sweet gifts throughout the season, they come with silly games, and fun gestures. They hide things, create things, and come alive while the kids sleep. I have a list of ideas I will add in the next post that you are WELCOME to use.  He can be a simple or as complex as you would like to make him or HER???!!!!??!?

3. Is it to late to start.
NOPE. Get in the game at any point. Your animal might show up one week before Christmas, or maybe Christmas day. FREEDOM is key.

4. How old does my child have to be?
Again, this is catered for you. You know your kids the best. What works for your kids. If you have a baby I would probably wait. If you have a 3 year old I defiantly would start. But again, you know your kids. I will say the first year they wont probably get it. It took my kids 2 years before they finally understand that Gabe comes EVERY Christmas. We are bringing more animals into our mix. This year an owl will join Gabe about two weeks before Christmas. You could do the same animal every year, or a new one every year...what best works for you. My kids are very attached to Gabe so he will always come.

So, come on into the stable. Let the animals come alive with the magic of Christ. Let the Spirit lead and watch your kids fall in love with Jesus.


Friday, October 2, 2015

It is Well

It is well with my soul. not easy words to really embrace in my heart. Is it really well in in my soul? really? I want to so desperately fall into the words and let them change my heart, my life, my being.  But.

I can utter those words. I can type them out. I can whisper them. I can shout them. And I CAN speak them over others. But can I believe them. Can I say that I honestly deeply believe, that it is well with my soul?

I can. When my eyes are on you Jesus. When my eyes are really on you. When my head does not turn, mind does not wonder, my eyes don't go looking. I can let go, I can believe, I can fall into those words so easily. And it so right. So so right. Until my eyes catch glimpse of the sorrow that lays before me. the brokenness that sweeps over the reality of our lives. Then. Then is it well?

It is it well that you take my best friend, my brother at such a young age? it it well with my soul, when I pleaded for years...years....years for his healing. believing embracing and wanting with every part of who I am for him to walk, to stand to LIVE. Is it well? It is not well.......it is not well with my flesh. it hurts, it still hurts. it will never stop hurting. is that well?

Is it well when I walk through the overwhelming grief of my dearests closest friend loosing her baby? is it well, when we lay on the floor in tears of unbelief and confusion? is it well then? No. it is not well with my flesh. My heart aches, I scream, I cry out and I do not and will not understand it.

It is well when my dearest and closest friend faces yet another scary and unimaginable situation of facing cancer with her husband? No. no it is not well.

Is it well? shootings, death, rapes, cancer, loss, sickness....grief...fear...is it well?

It is not well in my flesh, and is not even well in my spirit...until. I stop. and I focus. and I catch the eyes of JESUS. His name, utter His name. Then. and only then is it well. As I crawl, broken, weary, beat up and torn down to feet of Jesus. When He looks down and lifts my heavy head to see his eye's. Then and only then can my soul say it is well with my soul.. Oh Jesus, then I can say IT IS WELL. Jesus, you make it well. Not because you take it away, or provide answers, but because of who you are, the very essence of who you are, you Jesus you are the Well.

Bless it be the name of my JESUS. I can then throw off the burdens, the suffering, the fear, I throw it off and raise my hands, I can lift my head and stand to my feet and I can scream it is WELL because of JESUS that it is. It is because HE IS.

I weep. I weep. Oh Jesus you are the well of my soul.

Monday, August 31, 2015

I have yet to find my groove with school. But it is coming! It is so crazy and beyond surreal that I have school aged kids attending public school. The school the boys are attending is exactly 1mi away. I love this. I love that Kevin gets to do the morning routine with them and take them to school. I especially love this because I get to stay in my pjs longer and drink my coffee slower. 
School has been such a blessing! I love the boys teachers and I see the benefits of the boys being in school. Ty desperately needs it for routine and structure and Jaden loves the social interaction. Jaden even told me "mom home is so boring, school is so fun!" I couldn't ask for anything more! 
First day of school pic! 

Karsten also started school two weeks ago. This was hard on me...and him. But needed. He loves to be with us and struggles with separation anxiety. He is also very much a "middle" child. One foot in the little camp and one fit in the big camp. I can see him struggling. He needs to be in an environment that's focused on him a bit. The first two days were hard, but you can see the confidence growing and his excitement for school becoming more and more evident! 
I'm so proud of him and excited for him! 

This is also a great change in my norm because it gives me some alone time with Asa! We spend it most times running and at the park! 
For now that's a wrap! 

Wednesday, August 5, 2015


This is what it looked like today. Choosing to embrace the noise while having my "quiet" time. One day it will be all to quiet. 
Also. Going to try really hard to turn the Tv off more and turning on the praise music more.