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.