Jonah's Journey

Luke & I have recently been thinking and praying about a ministry/missions opportunity we came across. I saw a clip on the news one night a few weeks or maybe even a month ago. It was the story of a foster care program here in Nashville--it is a Christian based ministry that is not run by the state. I started telling Luke about it, & then showed him the news clip. I started praying about this, and we discussed it some more. I requested an interest form from the office--which included adding 4 names for references that needed to fill out papers for us. I went ahead and asked some friends if they'd be ok with filling out the referrals , emailed our pastor & another family to see if they'd do the same. Then I held onto the paper for over a week. Maybe this ISN'T for us, I kept thinking. I lose my mind with my 3 children sometimes, and we are finally almost DONE with babies, and maybe I was not hearing correctly. Maybe this isn't a calling for our family. But then every sermon I kept hearing and every song that came on the radio kept pointing me back towards knowing that this is for us right now. I had been praying even before this came up for an opportunity for another baby. I'm not physically going to carry another baby, and we can't pay right now for an adoption. Then this fell in our laps basically. We can't just ignore this right now. Just like in the Audio Adrenaline song  If not us who will be like Jesus To the least of these.
Sorry this isn't the best quality.

Luke grew up with this verse in his house on the wall :

27 Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. 

James 1:27

His parents fostered & he grew up with babies and kids in the house up until we were dating.  He was actually on board quicker than I thought he would be, this might have had something to do with being around foster care his childhood too.  He was also ready to find out more information, and I sent the paper on in. Our referral papers got sent back quickly { thank you}, and we headed to a meeting Tuesday night to find out more about the history of the ministry & everything else involved.

This was the clip we had seen before we went into the meeting, and basically the majority of what we knew about the ministry: 
We had questions at the meeting, talked to our kids, and talked on the way home. We decided together after that, that we are still in this & plan to keep moving forward to foster care. The plan for now? We have gotten a checklist of paperwork we need to get turned in, and are getting things together. We've submitted some papers, we will have classes to attend in a few weeks, we will have a home study & background check, and hopefully then we will be approved & ready to go! 

We've shared this ministry with some friends and family already, but we'd love to have prayer from everyone else too! I'll add some pictures and links also so you can read more about Jonah's Journey.  We will keep everyone updated with the process as we keep moving along. And if your baby has extra diapers that are too small, you might have someone new to send them to ! If you have any questions to ask us, feel free!

Jonah's Journey page: http://jonahsjourney.org/
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior


1/2 day

All 3 kids are asleep. It's been a long day!
Last night before bed we made a cake, like we had last year, and read The Night Before Kindergarten. Last year's cake was funfetti ( my favorite) and this year we tried a Duff brand Camouflage cake. I didn't pour it into the pan well enough to be a true camo, but it worked and was fun to make.
Thankfully Luke was home and able to do all of this with us.
Landon was ready to be awake this morning at 6:00 AM! I told him Mommy wasn't getting up for 30 more minutes, but he could go watch TV =)
I haven't had a daily set schedule to set my alarm for since he was 12 weeks old. I woke up every day at 5:30 AM to pump before I went to work. After that, I've just woken up to a cry or to a face IN MY FACE every morning.
Luke made muffins, we got them all dressed and ready, and we headed off to Kindergarten!
I'll add a collage from last year's picture as well.
Today was just a half day for K5-2nd grade, & the rest of the week the other kids will filter in with everyone having a full day together on Friday. The 1st grade lined up in the gym & followed their teacher to the class, then the 2nd grade lined up and followed their teacher to the class, and then it was time for the Kindergarten classes!
Of course the Headmaster then said something about this being one the of most memorable days of your child's schooling. ALMOST HAD TEARS. But Ella started squirming and screaming and Lucy sat in my lap. They called the kids up by name to line up and walk to their classroom. Of course he is by his friend alphabetically =)
He had already found his backpack hook, found his seat, and was ready to go by the time I made it down the hallway.
A few last words, pictures, and good-byes and we were out the door!
But not without a gift from the teacher:
3 hours later, and it was time for pickup.
He got into the car to tell us kindergarten WAS BORING! ALL WE DID WAS SIT AT OUR DESKS!
 Then throughout the day, he would remember and tell me one more thing he had forgotten.
He wouldn't tell me what song they sang this morning, and then before bed he was teaching Lucy 'Tootie Ta'. I'm not sure if he didn't want to tell me about the fun things since he had told me it was boring. And everyone knows you don't sing Tootie Ta sitting at a desk. =)
He's excited about a full day tomorrow ( and getting to move around some).  He is NOT excited about rest time. He has informed me that he does not have to close his eyes or sleep during rest time. He only has to lay down and relax.
Alarms are set. Lunch is packed. Uniform is out. And we are ready to do it all again!

One more picture from before we left his class =)




Tomorrow, I give one of my most prized possessions to the care of someone else.
My first baby, my only son, my Landon starts kindergarten tomorrow.
I know he is smart. And he is so ready to go!
I'm worried that I've not done enough to get him prepared.
I'm not worried about him forgetting his letters or numbers or how to count by 10's & 5's. I'm not worried about not learning to tie his shoes.
I've had 5 1/2 years with my boy. I took off 12 weeks after he was born, went back for 10 weeks, and have been home with him ever since ( besides subbing, teaching swim lessons, and the pumpkin patch). He was my reason to get out of bed so many days. He always has a hug to give. I love him so much & I have enjoyed my time with him.
But, this is the start of the rest of the next 13+ years of his life. And it's scary.

Did I teach him enough about LIFE?
Does he know how to be kind to everyone? Does he know how to help someone who is hurting? Have I taught him how to answer adults politely? Did I teach him how to speak kindly? Did I teach him what to do if he is scared?
What if he gets hurt ? Oh, I hate to think of not being there with him to help him through. I pray that I've given him the tools to get on with this next chapter in life.
He knows I'm a little upset about all of this kindergarten business. He keeps reminding me that he will still be my baby. He still sleeps with this bear (Maximus) and his Lovey ( Lovey).

I tucked him in with both tonight.

I pray he is a friend to everyone.  I hope he enjoys school. I hope he knows just how special he is to me.
I pray that all of his teachers this year love him like their own. I hope they know how to teach him. I hope he stays the same sensitive boy. I hope he continues to be a leader. I pray he leads others in the right direction. I hope he can enjoy every minute of this journey. I hope if he gets hurt or sad that he knows Who to call on.
I'm sure there will be a flood of tears tomorrow morning at drop off!
I'm leaving my baby in the hands of others.
I am praying for his safety and my sanity.

I know there's more I could have done. I could have been slower to anger. I could have yelled less. I could have napped with him more. I could have played in the yard more.
But I hope he knows I've done the best I knew how.

But  now I have all day to spend with the other 2 and work on this job of motherhood. I still have 2 years until Lucy goes through this, and then 2 more after that until Ella starts school.
Pray for me with those two all day!!! ;)

We made pizzas tonight, and made a cake ( like we did last year before pre-school) before bed. I've got his uniform set out. Luke has muffin mix out ready to make early in the morning. His backpack is packed with supplies. We've got gifts for teachers ready. We read( and I bawled) The Night Before Kindergarten. The camera battery is charging.  We've talked about what to expect. He has 2 friends already in his class.

I haven't woken daily to an alarm in over 5 years. The girls fought bedtime the past few nights and especially tonight. We are going to completely change their schedule to fit around drop off and pick up for Landon, and they will be waking( & napping) about 1-2 hours earlier than normal.
I've never been one to do good with change. AT ALL.
But I'm ready for a good routine.
I'm ready for him to learn!
I know he will do great!
{ Yes, I realize he isn't going off to college tomorrow, and it's only a half day the first day. }
I can't wait to see him grow in his academics, in the Lord, and in life.

I will add pictures tomorrow =)