Category Archives: parenting

finding humor and grace in life with little ones

first stage

It is always a surreal time in parenthood when your kids pass you in their ability.  Sometimes it has been humbling like when she surpassed my English grammar skills this year… in second grade, or, delightful like when she is able to memorize scripture verses twice as fast as me.  It didn’t take her long to pass Jay and I in her new hobby.  Pretty much as soon as her first lesson was over, we were left in the dust. Though I have never hidden my love of the violin, it was Gracyn who begged me all last year to sign her up to take lessons.  She saved her allowance for more than a year and paid for half of the used violin herself.  I don’t think she is any sort of phenom when it comes to learning this instrument but we are amazed at what she has been able to accomplish in 8 short months.

Yesterday she did the hardest thing parents require of their kids when they are better than us at something- show it off.   I think we were more nervous than she was, but we didn’t need to be.  She was the newest student and played the “easiest” song, but she didn’t seem to care- even when the kid in front of her got sick with nerves she was fine.  We couldn’t have been more proud of her as she stood up on the little riser and played the song she has been working on diligently for several weeks- such confidence, such grace, such beauty…

getting ready and intently watching how all the other students were preparing....

waiting her turn...

... what nerves?

all smiles with Miss Alissa afterwards



Filed under parenting

signs of the times

When “the professor” is out

it means the cul-da-sac is now a playground.

When our front yard looks like a Wal Mart bike lot ….

it means the neighborhood discovered the zip line.

When these little guys fill our garage with sweet chirps ….

it means spring is definitely here.

When these are essential accessories ….

summer is right around the corner.

When knees are more bandaid than skin …

it means we are seldom indoors,

… and when we can go from this

to this …

to this …

to this….

in 30 seconds time, then we are TWO!

Yes, we have entered birthday season here at the Rush house.  Havi kicked it off with a “puppy” inspired party.

So my baby is two.  I want to smile and cry about how fast our time with Havi has flown.  If you haven’t met her she is difficult to describe in 500 words or less.  I can say that you are missing out.  Of her 24 months on this earth, we have been within arms reach for 19 of them….and have loved every minute.

“For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.”  Psalm 100:5

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Filed under our adoption story, parenting

when a month goes by…

After taking a month off of writing and visiting blogs, the easiest way to catch up on the events of the last month is  through pics.  Missed you guys… its good to be back

In late Octobere went to on our annual pumpkin patch excursion.  i know, i know, how boringtypicalmiddleclasssuburbanite can you get, but now that its a tradition i don’t know how to make it stop.  anyway the kids love it and this year was soooo different:

1. we finally talked jay into joining us

2.  this was the same day that the wind storm (that would later tear roofs off of buildings in the midwest) arrived on the new mexico plains.  yea.

the wind was blowing with gusts near 50 mph … not so great for pics.

but the kids still got to participate in their favorite things before the wind ended all outdoor activity…


this is hilarious to me.  one of our best.  w-i-n-d-y

then there was halloween.  I have many thoughts on christian and halloween- you can ask me about them if you have an hour.

uncle james had the camera while my mom and i hung back at the house with candy and apple cider.

our friends, the bucks, joined us this year… they are the shark and cute owl.

… busted

aunt emily to the rescue.

this is the only picture that was taken of Noah that night … he was a ninja.

We left on the 5th of this month for Florida.  My grandpa is sick, and I wanted the kids to spend some time with him while he could still enjoy them.  Jay had training the beginning of the week,  so we drove without him.  My dad flew from Fl to Dallas so we only had 10 hrs of the 1:4 parent/child ratio.  The kids did great.  better than great.  I made sandwiches and brought snacks, and we stopped for gas and I made them go to the bathroom then.  It’s still a 25 hour drive, and not much good can be said about a 25 hour drive, but they made it as pleasant as possible.  One of the highlights of our trip was getting to meat TWO agci blog friends and their most adorable kiddos.  We stopped at the Pratts house in Texas for a whirlwind pizza dinner, and chat.   I am sure bringing 4 hungry kids who have been in a car for 10 hours is not many’s idea of fun, but they were so sweet and hospitable.

Mekele goin’ in for a smooch- they will kill us for pics like these in 15 years : )

… and then we were in Florida- loving on and taking care of Grandpa Jim, out on the boat petting manatees, to the beach to swim… it is an amazing place for kids- esp desert kids like mine.

kayaking with papa


Havi kept grandpa stocked with toys:  at any given time, he’d have 3 My Little Ponies, Pup-Pup, and a book on his knee.

Moments like this made the whole trip worth it.


My sister and nephew were there from Boston… I love this kid.


ikey’s first “catch”


little game of checkers

so the second family we got to hang with drove across florida just for us!  their sweet daughter got to the orphanage the same day we picked havi up.  its amazing what a special connection I feel with these families.   i pray our daughters grow up being pen pals (do they even have those anymore) or at least preferred facebook friends.

we went to dinner and had a great time getting to know each other.  of course it doesn’t look like miss K is loving our get together here, but she was all smiles most of the night… the B family has two older girls, as well, who my kids instantly considered close friends.  We’re trying to talk them into a visit to the Southwest soon : ).


That brings us up to date.  We have been playing catch up since we have been home and looking forward to a week of giving thanks- thanks for loving family, thanks for sacrificial friends, thanks for the health we enjoy but most of all thanks for the eternal hope we have in Christ.  Happy Thanksgiving!


Filed under parenting, Uncategorized

little poets

Yesterday Gracyn’s 2nd grade class put on a Bard‘s Cafe for us parents.  Each child memorized a poem of their choosing, dressed up in togas and recited them in front of family and friends.  It really doesn’t get much sweeter than gap toothed kids in guest room sheets spouting off classic poetry, really.



by Joyce Kilmer

“I think that I shall never see

a poem lovely as a tree

A tree whose hungry mouth is pressed

Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast

A tree that looks at GOD all day

And lifts her leafy arms to pray

A tree that may in summer wear

A next of robins in her hair

Upon whose bosom snow has lain

Who intimately lives with rain

Poems are made by fools like me

But only GOD can make a tree.”


gracyn with her friend, isabella

of course Ike couldn't resist a chance to be on stage

Have a great weekend!



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car crash

I always miss the “wordless wednesday’s” because Wednesday’s are too crazy around here to post much of anything.  But I see the draw in getting to post fun pictures without having to explain them or tell any kind of compelling story about them.  Some pictures just speak for themselves.


After fixing lunch, I was trying to track down Havi and finally asked the boys.

“She’s in the sandbox.”



Have a great weekend!


Filed under parenting

skivvies- plural of skiv·vy (Noun) 1. Underwear

Wanna take a guess at what is going on at our house today?


Havi       1

Mom       2


Filed under parenting


This little ditty is called “When Mom Cuts Out the Morning Nap”…


Filed under parenting