Hello and Happy Fall! This is hands-down my (Kathy’s) favorite season. Scott loves spring best — probably because of all of those long, cold Wisconsin winters when he was growing up. Fall is everything my soul longs for throughout the long, hot, sticky summer. I love the smells, the colors, the sounds, and the foods that go along with this time of year. But it brings along some challenges, too.
One of the toughest things about this time of year is trying to get the clothes switch-out done for so many kids. We have all those summer clothes to get packed away, the fifteen-or-so huge bins of fall clothes to bring up from the basement, the trying on to see what will hand down and fit whom, the loads and loads of laundry to get it all washed up and put away, then the almost-overwhelming task of doing the final inventory to see what everyone still needs to fill in the gaps after the hand-me-downs. Finally, there’s the shopping to get those things, and of course the challenge of even being able to pay for them. This involves faith and much prayer as we strive to trust God to determine our true needs vs. the things we just really like to have. Sometimes God showers us with the necessary funds ahead of time, and other times, He seems to be so very slow about answering those prayers. There have even been some seasons when He never sent the money needed to provide everything on the list. But He got us through anyway, and we grew a little bit more in our understanding as we went through the questioning process — searching for a deeper knowledge of this Father and His ways. We are so grateful to all of you who allow Him to provide for us through you. There are never words to fully express our gratitude. We could never fulfill this calling without all that you do for and with us. It’s always such a beautiful encouragement to watch how God brings so many of His people together to not only bring each of these children home, but to also give each of them all that they need to grow and thrive and become all that He has planned for them to be.
This year was one of the years when God did send us what was needed ahead of time, and this was a blessing because we ended up with quite a number of gaps that had to be filled in. Here are a few shots of the insanity that defined our lives for the past couple of weeks.
We’ve pretty much finished this task now, and next on our agenda is one of the hardest things we ever do as a family — a new family portrait. If the weather cooperates, we hope to take care of this on Saturday, October 18 at a friend’s farm. We haven’t had a family portrait taken in four years, so our three newest children aren’t even included in the one currently hanging on our family room wall.
It’ll be so good to get this new one done — and exhilarating to have it checked off my list. I have finally managed to gather and organize the wardrobe for this momentous event. Trying to figure out what everyone should wear is tough. If we went with the whole white-shirt-khaki-pants thing that many families do, we would look like a cult. But if I let everyone wear whatever they wanted, that would be pure chaos and probably painful to look at. We have settled on the same thing we did four years ago — just casual fall-colored shirts with jeans and denim jackets or hoodies if it’s cool out.
After we complete this more-than-daunting task, we have a spine surgery for Jaden on November 6, and then we will spend the rest of the month doing our normal presentations for National Adoption Awareness Month. This year Meghan will be telling her story herself, and the kids will be singing again. There is much still to do in order to have us all ready for those presentations, and prayer for endurance, available prep time, and clear thinking would be appreciated. Our presentation schedule is as follows:
November 16: Our home church, North Cincinnati Community Church (Mason)
November 23: Faith United Church of Christ (Hamilton)
November 30: TBD
Then the holidays will be upon us and after that, in January which is Sanctity of Human Life Month, Scott and I and our three youngest will be taking a trip to Tampa where we will do three or four presentations on adoption and children born with special needs. We’ll let you know more about that as it gets closer and the plans become more definite.
In the middle of all of these things, we still have our regular, grueling appointment schedule (ten just this week alone). Most of the appointments this week will be about getting final test results for Lilyan as we continue trying to find the reason for her horrible headaches. Please keep praying that her doctors will be able to find some answers and ways to relieve her pain. It’s so hard to stand by helplessly and watch her suffer when they hit.
Lastly, some of you who have been following our family for years, may remember Jasmin — a little girl we tried to adopt from Romania years ago. We got some very sad news about her this week. If you want to know about that, you can read that on my post, “God, If You’re There . . . “, at my personal blog, Owning My Nothingness. This news was so difficult for us to hear and caused us to question — again — a number of things about God and the ways in which He works in and through the gut-wrenching circumstances that make up life in this world. Sometimes . . . it’s just hard.
We’ll stay in touch as we move through the coming months. if you have any questions about TSC presentations – or anything else – just let us know.
Kathy (for all of the Rosenows)