stretch marks

Avalanche area, next 4 years – I mean, months – I mean, miles.

We took the kids back to Hatcher’s Pass last week. It has been a month since we took the path through clouds, and it was victorious to return with Andrey and Reagan after redeeming them from the enemy’s camp. Welcome to God’s country, kids.


Every day has new victories and crises. And every crisis is a victory in a way (I’ll keep telling myself that, at least) because we learn something new each time. For example, Reagan needs her arms to balance as she goes up the stairs…or she will tumble down them.

See? We’re learning.

Yesterday, after 3 1/2 hours of sleep, a night of a child puking, a cat puking, and two poopy pull-up messes, I dried Reagan off after her third shower in 36 hours and just hugged her, telling her for both of our sakes that I love her…that I even like her…and that we’re going to get through this.

Yesterday, Andrey ran up to me crying with his arms held out and clung to me. “Ma-moh! Ma-moh!!” He had hit his head, and knew he could run to me…and Ma-moh kissed him and prayed for his owie. A small grin emerged with the real tears as he experienced something new. A ma-moh to comfort him, finally.

Yesterday seems like five years ago, and yet only a minute ago. Yesterday I was stretched, the kids were stretched, and our coffee pot started making funny sounds from overuse. I think I started making funny sounds from overuse, too.

Our tent pegs are being stretched. Our comfort zone is, too.

Our comfort zone will expand to meet our current location. His love is deep and wide.


The contradiction comes when I realize that all these experiences and emotions were real. The happiness that gave me chill bumps was as deep as my loneliness. My sense of certainty about being exactly where God wanted me was solid, but just as firm was the fact that I wondered at times what on earth I was doing here. The frustration that threatened to overtake me on some occasions was just as deep and true as the unbounded joy I got at other times. I loved my new life; I truly loved it. But compared to the life I had been living, it was hard.


Katie Davis, Kisses From Katie


We’ve taken them outside the walls of home just a few times – to the doctor, to church, to Hatcher’s Pass. We got gutsy last week and took them in two carts to Target (alas, it had to be done). We’ve had a few meals dropped off (huuuuuuge thank you!) but no visitors. We’ll venture back out slowly…start piano lessons again soon…and have dinner with friends again. We miss you.


The home-grown kids are at home in Alaska’s outdoors – in the woods, in the wet, in the wild. Andrey and Reagan were a little more uncertain.
“I’m supposed to step over that? And why are you giving me a yogurt bucket with no yogurt in it? You mean I have to pick my snack?! What’s the deal? Where’s that attorney, anyway?”



Sorry, buddy. She’s in Spaghettia, and we’re not taking you back. It’s that No Return policy and all, don’t you know.


Reagan picked leaves, mostly. The whole time. Pretty quiet, not too much whining, and super cute in my Green Bay hat.


I guess I’m still learning a little Bulgarian (two little Bulgarians, actually). “Ma-moh! Vis!!” means, “Mama! Look!!”


My friends, adoption is redemption.
It’s costly, exhausting, expensive, and outrageous.



  Buying back lives costs so much.
When God set out to redeem us, it killed Him.



Still picking leaves. But she did achieve walking up the stairs this week alternating her feet, instead of going up one step at a time, baby-style. Don’t ask about going down the stairs yet, though.


he’s never been scared of hard work
so why are his hands trembling?


and how could something so small be so weighty
on the scales of what could be?


this tiny seed has potential
for a better way of life



and how he sows it
is crucial
for his little ones, his wife


so he prays to the Lord of the harvest

would You rain down on the least of these


would You please multiply and divide it


for these are my sharecropper’s seeds


It is Sunday night as I write this. Here at home on a different mountain, the wind has stopped for the moment… and debris is everywhere, inside and out. Six little kids are brushing teeth and getting ready for bed.

It will be quiet soon. Dirty dishes are waiting, hot tea is waiting, books are waiting. Our comfort zone gets a breather between growing pains. The road is winding, and we have no idea what is around the next curve.



In other words, the prospects are great. Enjoy. But don’t hold up other people on their journey up the road…and don’t stop where you are, because the view will be even better as you go further up and further in.


stretch marks — 4 Comments

  1. I think of you every day & lift you & your family in prayer. Our glorious Papa hatched this plan for you & Vince to give these 2 munchkins a loving home. So He will get you all through the tough times. Stay strong sister – He has got you in the palm of His hand. Sending you giant hugs xo