Wednesday, March 17, 2010

In a heartbeat.....

UPdate time!!

Team Newsom is here and accounted for! We've had a very recent "BUSY" spell and are thankful to let you all know that we are all surviving, thriving, alive and well!! God is good and I am amazed daily at His strength in my weakness, His power to overcome bad situations, His grace during our hard moments, His unconditional love, His mercy that is given freely to me every single day, and His many blessings that I really, really, really don't deserve!

So here's a short version of the many things going on here for Team Newsom......

We've been celebrating birthdays over the last few months and I promise that I will download all the pictures from my camera SOON and post some photos of my sweet TEAM but believe me, it's been lots of FUN! Joel, Jackson, Madilyn and I all have had big fun birthdays with more birthday celebrations for Joel, Joshua and Hannah to come in the next month or two! The kiddos are truly growing up before my eyes and I am trying to soak up every moment of it! Each of them are such TREASURES!

News has finally gotten out that the Newsom Bed and Breakfast, El Paso is OPEN for business and we are all booked up for the month of March!! What an awesome month of company!! We hosted my sister, Amberly, my brother, DJ, my sweet sister-in-dating, Katy, and also the kiddos....Dawson, Crayton and Chloe this past weekend! We packed lots of really fun activities into a quick weekend and it was really INCREDIBLE! ;)

Tomorrow, Joel's parents arrive and will be here with us for a few days. Yea!! Next weekend, my parents are coming! Woohoo!! Joel's cousin Dale was also planning a family trip out west but unfortunately, the timing didn't work out but we're hoping to re-schedule a visit with them!

In the midst of all the company, Joel has been doing lots of Ar*y training and has been in and out of the field! He is really enjoying his job and I'm super proud of him. He works long hours but we have him coming home every night and we get lots of family time on the weekends so I'm NOT going to complain! I'm so very thankful he is not currently depl*yed!

The kiddos are doing great with their school work this year, they are enjoying home school PE class at the YMCA twice a week and the oldest 3are also playing basketball. Yes, 3 practices and 3 games a week keeps the taxi light on my suburban blinking! :) They have also made some very special friends here and are really liking El Paso!

I've stayed very busy homeschooling and loving on our sweet kiddos, teaching a Bible Study class on Wednesdays, loving on some new friends going through hard challenges, trying to exercise regularly, researching and looking at homes for sale here in El Paso (we're praying!), volunteering at the unit's family readiness group, working on Joshua's re-adoption paperwork, (BTW, you can PRAISE THE LORD with us in celebrating that Joshua Nahome Newsom is now legally Re-adopted in the state of Texas, as of last week! YEAYEAYEA!) I'm just running around like a chicken with my head cut off on most days but... I'm praising the Lord for every moment and every opportunity to serve Him and He has richly blessed me and given me great joy during this season of giving of my time and energy to MANY different callings. My cup truly overflows with joy and blessings.

So I'm sure you would probably also like an UPdate on the adoption and Joshua Nahome's continued transition into life as a Newsom so I'll give you a little update today and hope to focus a little more later on specifics.....

After 8 months home, Joshua is really thriving. He is happy. He is sweet. He is healthy. He is loving and kind. He is fun. He is smart. He is 99% fluent in English (at a 4 year old level) after only 8 months in America! WOW! He does struggle occasionally with all of the trauma and loss in his life but he grieves appropriately and it is really much healthier for him to grieve now than to suppress those emotions so I am happy that he talks about his feelings and lets those tears flow! We talk openly of Tigist (his birthmother), about Ethiopia, his time in the orphanage, about his brown skin color and our white skin color, etc. We believe honest and open communication lines are best! He does show some insecurities in new and unfamiliar situations and we now know that he needs lots of reassurance and explanations before we do something new. He has a few attention seeking behaviors that he does when he is nervous but they aren't show- stoppers, just small little annoyances and the time out chair usually does the trick. He has bonded with us amazingly well, he is a great sleeper, he is helpful, and he has a generous spirit. He is a true blessing.

I want to be transparent with you, though, and say that this adoption has NOT been all easy and every day is NOT always perfect......I truly don't want to sugar-coat the reality here..... Joshua Nahome is a sweet little boy and is perfect for our family but it has been a hard, but very rewarding, journey of obedience, stretching of ourselves, and it is a daily sacrifice of time, energy, love, money, and emotions. It has been hard but it has also been really, really good! I know some of you that occasionally read my blog are praying about adoption for your family and so, just in case you are wondering--here is the bottom line: if we could go back in time and start all over, WE WOULD STILL DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN. IN A HEARTBEAT!! It has been worth it all and God has grown us and taught us soooo much through the experience-- We are thankful that we took the leap of faith and stepped out of our comfortable little bubble in obedience to God's calling to adopt!

Blessings to you and yours,

Monday, March 1, 2010

Memorial Box Monday

It's been several weeks since I shared a Memorial Box Monday story with you-- life has been very full for Team Newsom and wonderfully overflowing with blessings, friendships, work and play!

If you are wondering WHAT a Memorial Box is, feel free to visit Linny and learn more about it. I've been inspired by Linny's life testimony at A Place Called Simplicity. I believe it is important to REMEMBER and SHARE with our family about the AMAZING things God has done in our lives!

So here's a Newsom Memorial Box Story that I want to share with you today......

Several years ago, we were stationed at West Point, New York. It one of the most lovely places I have ever lived. Our home was amazing, Joel's job was wonderful, the family time was great, and our friendships there are treasured! We lived only 0.8 miles from Joel's office and the commute to work for Joel was sooooo easy. He could be at work in 4 minutes, come home to shower after PT and for lunch. The not-so-great thing about him driving the 0.8 miles to work was that the parking was NOT easy at his office! If he drove to work, he would usually end up parking nearly as far from his office as if he had just walked from our home. He started looking at bicycles as an alternative mode of transportation for him to get back and forth the 0.8 miles to work at this point. This happened to be a time when God had called our attention to our finances and and we had been really budgeting, trying to get out of debt, and working through The DAVE RAMSEY Financial Freedom program. (What a blessing his program was to us!) Anyway, Joel really wanted a nice mountain bike, but the price of those things, at that time, was way out of our budget! We were really committed to getting out of debt and living within a strict budget ( what is really stinkin' cool about this is that we didn't know that the money that we were able to save after we finally got out of debt would be the money God had for us to use to pay Joshua Nahome's Adoption Ransom! SO COOL!)

ANYWAY~~ back to the story.... Joel had located a used, very nice mountain bike in our area that was still more expensive than we needed to spend but he loved it and he had been praying about it. The day he needed to decide whether or not to purchase the bike, he came home for lunch, went to check the mail, and found a letter from an old friend. Folks, you guessed it....... inside that letter was a check from our friend for the EXACT amount of the bike that Joel wanted to purchase!! No kidding!! The note attached to the check said that this old friend had owed a debt to Joel that he had forgotten to pay back and he had just remembered it and wanted to make it right after 9 years! WOW.

Joel was amazed and blessed. We were both in awe that our God was so perfectly involved in the tiny details of our lives and finances that he would send a check for the exact amount of the bike, on the exact day Joel was planning to make a decision. Joel did buy the bike that day knowing that God's provision of the money was NO small coincidence, but a true gift and blessing from above! The bicycle was the right choice for his commute/parking issue during our time at West Point!

Right now, that same bicycle proudly occupies a spot in our garage, (not in a memorial box!) but every time I see it, I am reminded of God's provisions for us during that time at West Point! That's what Memorial Box Monday is all about......remembering and sharing what God has done in our lives to encourage and remind us that GOD IS GOOD. He is always faithful. He is always loving. He is always with us. God is the provider for our every need!

Deuteronomy 8:18-20 "And you shall remember the Lord your God, for it is He who gives you the power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day. Then it shall be, if you by any means forget the Lord your God, and follow other gods, and serve them and worship them, I testify against you this day that you shall surely perish. As the nations which the Lord destroys before you, so you shall perish, because you would not be obedient to the voice of the Lord your God."

Many Blessings to you on this Memorial Box Monday!