Life and Stuff

Wow. It’s been a very intense few weeks since we came home with Nolan. I’m not even sure how many weeks it’s been because it’s all kind of a blur. I’m going to try to update briefly here and share some future plans. We always, always cherish  your prayers, and would like to let you know how you can pray for us.

Bottom line with Nolan is that he’s doing great! He has required all of our focus, and we even had to cancel some appointments for the other kids to make it possible for us to be available to give him what he needs, but he is responding beautifully. Scott and I have not been able to start our weekly dates back, yet, but we don’t feel like it will be much longer before we can start transitioning back into those. He is truly a joy and a bright spot in our family. We genuinely do feel so blessed that God brought this child to us. He is obviously feeling, and is openly expressing, more joy with each passing day. We still have one or two minor behavioral incidents each day, but they resolve quickly each time. He’s drinking in the love his new family is pouring over him, and is learning like a little sponge. His hunger for knowledge and his curiosity about everything is insatiable. We love it!

Prayer requests for our family: We are trying very hard to take a little vacation time as a family. As we shared earlier, Lilyan’s Make-a-Wish pool is in now, and as of tomorrow, should finally be ready for swimming. We have stepped away from TSC’s work and tried to clear our calendar from August 23 until September 7 with the hope of just playing, resting, focusing on the kids, and doing lots of swimming and maybe some free events in the area. We’re trying to pretend that we’ve left town and unplug from everything. So far, we have not been able to make this happen. We’ve had one unexpected medical issue with the kids after another, and have been fighting to meet the last few deadlines with our publisher as we try to get our book published this fall. Scott and I are working pretty frantically this afternoon to finalize these things and schedule appointments that will need to be taken care of immediately after vacation. We hope, by bedtime tonight, to have all of these things to a point where we can put them on hold until after our vacation with the kids. Our plan is to start tomorrow with a little vacation kick-off day and no work. Would you please pray that we can do this?

The other big news on the horizon is a trip to Alabama. The Coast Guard has decided to posthumously award the Meritorious Service Medal to my brother, Gary, and one of his shipmates, Rick Gauld, who also died that night. This award is the peacetime equivalent of the Bronze Medal, and we are very honored that the survivors have worked to be sure Gary’s and Rick’s bravery is being recognized. Because both men hailed from Birmingham, the Coast Guard has decided to hold the ceremony there instead of in Tampa at the site of the collision.

Scott and I felt like this would be a really good time for us to attempt another TSC speaking trip and to reconnect with one of the churches in Huntsville, AL who has been supporting TSC since we traveled there to present back in 2009. Our Board has discussed this and agreed that this would be a good thing, so suddenly, we have a huge project on our hands. We hope to present in Birmingham and also in Huntsville during the time we are in AL. Some of what’s dominating our time right now is putting pieces in place for this trip. We are excited, but also recognize how daunting such an undertaking will be with all of the kids’ wheelchairs, catheter supplies for children who will need to be cath’d every three hours, and all of the “normal” packing for such a group. Please pray for us as this trip nears. We want to trust God to keep opening doors (as He has already been doing) and work out the details, while we just bask in the wonder that it’s actually happening. This is something that I’m sure our kids will never forget, and it’s our desire to be used by God to speak passionately on behalf of all of the world’s waiting orphans.

So many of you have been such a huge part of bringing Nolan home, and we haven’t forgotten that. We do plan to send each of you personal thank-you’s for the incredible ways in which you blessed our family during his adoption process. Please know how grateful we are and accept our apologies that we haven’t managed to do this yet.

The next time you hear from us, we hope to have fun vacation stories to share with you. For now, though, here are some pictures of Nolan’s continuing journey as a new Rosenow.

Within the first week, Nolan learned to sit and play puzzles quietly with the other little ones during our family reading time in the evenings

Within the first week, Nolan learned to sit and play puzzles quietly with the other little ones during our family reading time in the evenings

The kids spent a day playing in the dirt pile made by the pool prep. Nolan was so proud of himself when he climbed to the top of this he pile.

The kids spent a day playing in the dirt pile made by the pool prep. Nolan was so proud of himself when he climbed to the top of this pile of dirt.

Helping his sister, Kathryn, bathe our dog, Murray

Nolan helping his sister, Kathryn, bathe our dog, Murray. He thought the idea of bathing dogs was hilarious.

Nolan Meets Sil

Nolan meeting Allan, Nicole, and their dog, Silke, for the first time. He is so gentle with animals and loves dogs so much.

Keller Meets Nolan

Meeting his youngest nephew – Allan’s and Nicole’s little guy, Keller.

He told us that he'd never ridden a bike before, and we think this must be true, based on how difficult it was for him. This still-like-new tricycle that was Owen's was the perfect size for him, and the straps on the pedals were just what he needed to help him learn to pedal. He was beside himself with joy when we told him that this is now his trike.

He told us that he’d never ridden a bike before, and we think this must be true, based on how difficult it was for him. This still-like-new tricycle that was Owen’s was the perfect size for him, and the straps on the pedals were just what he needed to help him learn to pedal. He was beside himself with joy when we told him that this is now his trike.

Stephen made these Nolan Paper Dolls, and Nolan thinks they are great. He especially loves the Ninja Turtle bathing suit that's just like his own real one. :)

Stephen made these Nolan Paper Dolls, and Nolan thinks they are great. He especially loves the Ninja Turtle bathing suit that’s just like his own real one. 🙂

Double birthday celebrations as Owen and Ethan celebrated together - but each with his own table, decorations, and cake. Nolan can't wait for his own birthday!

Double birthday celebrations as Owen and Ethan celebrated together – but each with his own table, decorations, and cake. Nolan can’t wait for his own birthday!

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