Friday, July 31, 2009

Naming Names

You may know by now that I like to look into the meaning of people's names, or hear the story of why parents picked a certain name for their child. Often times our names are a story within itself, and can hold much meaning and tradition.

Well, when I was reading through my new devotional book the other morning, I had an 'ah-ha moment' (for lack of a better term). The chapter had begun to share that God has literally hundreds of names that He is mentioned as in the Bible. For example he is our Counselor (Psalm 16:7), Provider (Genesis 22:14), Redeemer (Isaiah 59:20), Helper (Hebrews 13:6), Shelter (Joel 3:16). The 'ah-hah moment' came when the author stated that each of God's names in the Bible represents a way He wants us to trust Him. She goes on to say that many of us often have trouble remembering even some of God's basic names...yet, knowing God's names can actually be a great help and comfort to us no matter what situation we are finding ourselves in. Knowing God's names helps us to recognize His character, and this in turn could change how we live our lives.

A friend of a friend of mine just recently became a believer, recognized the Bible as truth and God as real, and has trusted Jesus as her Savior. Her husband however, is atheist and against her new found faith. He has been persecuting her - will hide her Bible so she can't read it. He has made her sign a contract stating that she will not talk with other believers, will not read the Bible, and will never teach anything in the Bible to their future kids....otherwise their marriage is over. To her, God surely must be a Refuge (Deut 33:27).

I have friends who have lost children, lost pregnancies mid-term, and lost the dream of having children of their own. To them, God must certainly be their Comforter (2 Cor 1:3-4)

When Jake is gone on trips I don't have to fret about the boogey man, but can peacefully lay my head down to sleep at night if I trust that God is my Protector (Psalm 32:7)

The author challenged me to remember and know God's names so that I don't forget one just when I need to remember it. I am starting simple, just by underlining God's names as I am come across them as I read them in the are some more:

Resting Place (Jeremiah 50:6), Healer (Psalm 103:3), Peace (2 Thess 3:;16), Strength (Psalm 28:7), Restorer (Psalm 23:3)

What is the name you most need to trust God to be to you during this time in your life?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

That's Our Girl!








When Snuggling!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

More Adoption Thoughts

I wanted to write more thoughts on the adoption yesterday, but since the post was getting so long, I didn't end up touching on everything that I had wanted. Anyways, if this 4 year old turns out not to be a boy, we have a few options:

1) We can continue to wait until Pastor Gideon is able to locate a boy around 5 yrs or under in Ghana available for adoption. And, what I have realized lately is that we are not waiting around for them to search and search for a child...meaning, there is certainly no shortage of children in our age range/gender preferences. We are simply waiting on the un-modern/disorganized process of the overseas team commuting to the orphanages, making contacts, and listing the children with our adoption agency. They are also in the middle of moving their GlobeServe office from one area in Accra to another, so this has also complicated things as well. Up until this week, I hadn't quite made this distinction that we are not waiting on children to become available, but rather the process of locating them and listing them with our agency. Most agencies already have children on a list, waiting for adoptive families, but with our pilot program the lists are still being compiled.

You may or may not be wondering why we are so set on adopting a boy. When God first put international adoption on our hearts, Jake and I both strongly felt that we were to adopt a boy that was around JJ's age. We both just felt that way, and I think it was just a 'gut' feeling that God put inside of us, and we have not questioned it.

2) Our next option would be to switch to a different agency/adoption program. Although not common this far in the process, our agency has mentioned that we would be allowed to switch agencies (and given a refund of the fees we have sent overseas) because of the setbacks, disorganization, and un-timeliness that we have experienced with the Ghana program so far. Sometimes I think, oh we should have just stayed in the Ethiopia program that we had started in. Everything was all set up, clear, and step-by-step. Thousands of adoptions have already been done in Ethiopia, so the process is quite sure and there are clear expectations of how it will go. But, then I think back to the day we switched to the Ghana program, and all the cool things that God did to lead us there. And, when I think back to that, I am so sure that Ghana is where we are supposed to be for this. One thing that our social worker had mentioned along with the option for us to switch agencies was that the Ghana program did not seem to be going in line with our timeline. But, then I thought, what exactly is our timeline? Why are we in such a hurry anyways? Other than the obvious thought that there are needy, orphaned children waiting for a home....of course that gets me in a hurry fast. But, other than that, there is no reason for us to be hurrying things along. We need to just keep committing this to God's timing, and not our own. I do not see Jake and I switching agencies...I just feel too much that doing that would be taking this into our own hands and not letting God work the way that he wants to. My mom sent me this cool excerpt from a book that she is reading that describes this perfectly well:

What answer from God are you waiting for? Is it the answer to prayer for the return of a rebellious child? Is it the answer to a prayer for the salvation of a family member? Is it the answer to a prayer for restoration in your marriage? For a job? For healing? For provision? Whatever it is, keep on praying and waiting. Release it into God’s hands and let Him do it in His way and His time. His answer will be worth the wait.

And the closing prayer…Dear God, help me to have faith enough to believe You will answer my prayers. Give me the patience to wait for the answers to appear. Keep me from giving up and taking matters into my own hands. Instead, enable me to trust that You have heard my prayers and will answer in Your perfect way and time. Help me to rest in peace during times of waiting. Amen.

3) A third and completely different option for us would be to stay with the same agency, and switch and adopt from The Cornerstone of Hope Orphanage which our social worker has just begun coordinating adoptions for. You may remember that this orphanage is in Nigeria, and we are helping with an event to raise money for this orphanage. My first thought, again, is to hang on tightly to adopting from Ghana, but of course, if God leads us to adopt from COH instead, then so be it. The thing about COH is that it is so real to me right now. I've heard the stories of the orphans they currently have, I've seen their pictures, I've seen pictures of where they live, I've met the man who started this orphanage and Jake and I have been working closely with COH board members and helpers to put on the Night Under the African Stars event. However, this is also a newer program, and is sure to have setbacks and hiccups in the process as well. The difference is that the founder of the orphanage, Eric, is native to Nigeria, yet has lived and worked in the U.S. for over 10 years. So timeliness would be less of an issue. Eric also makes frequent trips to the orphanage and has constant contact with the teachers and caretakers there. So, the communication lines are solid.

Of course, we don't have to make any one of these decisions yet. We are hopeful that this 4 year old will be a boy, but if not, these will be our options.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Adoption Update

Well, we've gotten some action with our adoption since I last updated! About a week and a half ago we received an email with the referrals for our social worker's hosting program (and these referrals were also available to us for adoption) that I had mentioned in my last update.....these referrals were expected by all of us to be older children, but nonetheless there was a possibility that one or more would be within our age range. So, we received a file with 4 children available along with this note from our social worker (which I have edited to retain privacy) about the youngest of the children:

The youngest is age 5. I'm unsure if this is the boy P Gideon was referring to for your family..... I have responded with this inquiry & for the pics to be resent. This 5 yo has an older sibling as well, I would like to think the children would be kept together which makes me believe he must have another child in mind for you...??? Of course any child avail for adoption is avail to you--I'm simply concerned the ages are older then your preferences.

In a report to me yesterday from P Gideon there was word of a 4 year old child available for adoption, but gender is not indicated. As mentioned I have responded to the Pastors to please send the photos & address my concerns/question about the 4 year old (if the child is a 'he') that child might be better suited for your family.

Here is what the report reads:

1. _______ HOME

The Team visited the ______ Home located at _______. The place which doubled up as an orphanage and a School, used to benefit from the Catholic Relief Services of Tamale in the Northern Region of Ghana. The Catholic Relief Services provided the Orphanage cum School food and other supports until it stopped – the reason, the Team did not find out from the proprietress. The place has thirty-five orphans and fifteen needy children (needy because the children either lost a parent or has parents / guardians but no funds to support them to attend School). The youngest orphan in the home is four years old. The home has from Nursery to Junior High School 3 levels

After we received this email, Jake and I talked things over and agreed with our social worker that we would wait to see if this 4 year old would turn out to be a boy. Since the 5 year old boy in the report had an older brother our social worker stated that she would really like to see them placed together if at all possible. Jake and I had not considered taking on a sibling group, so we were all in agreement that the 4 year old would best suit our age preferences and current family dynamic if he is a boy.

So, we received word about this 4 year old almost two weeks ago, and have just kind of been waiting to find out gender. Then a few days ago we received this note from our social worker:

I spoke with P Gideon & he had advised me he does not yet have the data on the 4 year old child we have been waiting on. Seems so simple of a request-but I understand the child is in a different community & they don't have details (age/gender/data) only that the youngest child in this orphanage is 4. I know they can't just pick up a phone or E mail to get this info but he said he would work on trying to reach someone within the community via phone. (They are just making connections with this community/orphanage). Now, they did have this information from P Gideon's recent trip there but apparently it was all on the stolen computers/camera & he doesn't recall if the child is a boy/girl. First, he stated he would be traveling to the community where this child & many other orphans available for adoption are in mid- august & would get the details only then. I asked if there was an alternate way to find out w/out him traveling, ie. phone or Dep of Social Welfare. He agreed to try & phone the community in order to find out. I stressed to him I needed this information in one week.

One thing I have learned in this process is that when the pastors in Ghana say a few days...that translates into Ghana time of a few weeks! :) It seems like a long time to wait about a month to find out the gender of this child, but like our social worker noted later in her email, there is no great way of communication in general. Their internet access is hardly there, and when it is, it is very sporadic and unreliable. And, oh, did you catch that the pastors' office was robbed a few weeks ago, and their lap tops & cameras stolen which contained all the info/bios/photos of available children?! Yes, sometimes when I sit back and look at the experience that we have had with this program I think that we are crazy for even being part of a pilot program, but then again, it is exciting to help pave the way for a brand spankin new idea and process for this country. I also feel like this experience is maybe preparing me to someday have a lengthy stay in Ghana and be one of the contacts for AAC in processing adoptions. I could see myself getting a little mo-ped and trucking around to the different orphanages, taking photos, gathering info, and helping care for the prospective adoption children. I am sure it's not quite as easy as that, but I just feel like this process could go so much faster if they had a good communication system, and better way to commute to these villages. Jake told me that it takes approx 4 hours to travel 60 miles in Ghana, so I can see why the pastors have to carve out a big chunk of time and make appointments to visit these orphanages outside of Accra.

Wow, this update got really long and certainly qualifies for bad blogger ettiqute! However, it really helps me to sort through all of this by writing it out, and I also like to keep track of all the details which I will give to our lil guy someday...whoever he is! And, I'd like to think that someone somewhere who is looking into international adoption might read our blog and get a true and detailed glimpse into the process. I guess bottom line is that, things are progressing little by little and we will wait for answers. :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Culture Smart

Values & Attitudes - Part I

Ghanaian values and attitudes can be summed up by taking a peek at the proverbs they have created within their local languages. Ghanaian proverbs are used widely to impart wisdom, and being skilled in the use of proverbs is a highly respected quality. Ghanaian proverbs, stories and knowledge have been passed down from generation to generation.

Here are some sample proverbs (in bold), along with how they are put into practice in Ghana:

If two people carry a log, it does not press hard on their heads.
A person is not a palm tree that he should be self-sufficient.
You cannot tie a knot without using your thumb.
Mutual help and collective responsibility are important in Ghana. Everybody in a community or extended family will know, and show an interest in the affairs of everybody else. The idea that you could live next to a neighbor for years without knowing his name, as can happen in the West, is completely alien to Ghanaians. From birth, a Ghanaian is a social being who does not, and will not, live in isolation from other people. A babysitter is never needed. The elderly are never lonely or isolated.

Treat your guest as a guest for two days, and on the third day give him a hoe.
Foreign visitors will find Ghanaians showing an interest in their well-being and day-to-day lives, and will receive numerous invitations to meals, parties and hometowns. Visits, invitations, and gifts given in appreciation are intended to be a gesture to the foreign visitor as tokens of friendship and symbols of peace.

Nothing is as painful as when one dies without leaving a child behind.
There is no wealth when there are no children.
In Ghana, marrying and bearing children are more than expectations; they are considered requirements and obligations to society. Childless couples are considered selfish and abnormal, and do not gain respect or even sometimes a proper funeral. Inability for a woman to bear a child (which is seen as her primary responsibility) is the grounds for a divorce or the taking of a second wife.

Absence does not bring up a child.
Children are extremely respectful and obliging to their parents and all elders. 'Getting caned' is the term used for the discipline tactic of what we know in the West as spankings....instead of using a wooden spoon or something of the sort, Ghanaian parents use sugar canes for administering 'spankings'. Anybody in a Ghanaian community who witnesses a child misbehaving will have no hesitation in rebuking them before taking them back to their parents for more of the same. In Ghana, a child has the opportunity to learn from and be cared for by dozens of near relatives. It is not uncommon for a child to live with an uncle, aunt, or grandparent rather than his or her parents.

Excerpts and information from the book: Ghana Culture Smart - the essential guide to customs & culture

Saturday, July 25, 2009

I want to be like you, Dad

We are in Kansas City for a tournament and Coach Julian just sent me this picture from the bench side. He included the caption: All Dads dream of moments like these!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Dear Esi

Dear Esi-

I loved getting your letter in the mail and I think writing back and forth will be a great way to keep in touch until you are able to secure your internet access. Every once in awhile it hits me that you are actually all the way across the world, probably getting up early to head to your job, or working at your store, decorating for a wedding or doing some cooking! I am positive that Nana Yaw MUST miss your flavorful, homemade meals so much!

Right now Nana Yaw, Jake, and Coach Julian are at a tournament in Kansas City with all the teams. This is the last tournament for the year for Nana Yaw's All Iowa Attack team since high school will be starting in August. Nana Yaw has been to so many different states this summer traveling for tournaments that it is getting hard to keep track of everywhere that he has been. In July alone they have been on the road for two long trips....each 10 days. Jake moved Nana Yaw up to the top team for the 17U division, so he has been playing some tough competition. Nana Yaw has gotten to be great friends with one of his teammates named Treyvaan. They get along really well and stick together on the road trips. Nana Yaw has also gotten to spend some time over at his high school coach's house...I am sure he has told you that they have a gym hooked onto their home! They also took Nana Yaw to their lake house for a weekend so he got to jet ski for the first time (with a life jacket on of course!). Nana Yaw's high school coach has really enjoyed having him practice with the teams, and he has kept us informed, and Nana Yaw involved in all the summer activities that the high school team has been participating in. Nana Yaw helped out at one of the camps that the highschool was running for the little kids, and Jake said that when he dropped Nana Yaw off on the first day, all the little kids ran right up to Nana Yaw and wanted to give him high fives. They already knew his name and everything. I know that he is going to be a big hit at his school!

Jake just got an email this week that Nana Yaw's visa paperwork is being processed. Jake is quite sure that it will all be approved and we should get the final answer sometime in August or maybe even before. Jake has been working hard to create a hosting program so that other kids in Ghana like Nana Yaw will be able to come to school here in the U.S. He was just able to get a visa approved for a young man in Lebanon, so he will be the next to come, and he will stay with a family in Jake's All Iowa Attack program. Jake is tentatively planning his next trip to Ghana for October of this year. He really wants to spend some time with Issac and get an idea of his program and meet more of the players who are eligible to come to the U.S. I'll let you know arrival and departure dates once he decides for sure.

I haven't gotten a chance to give you an update on our adoption process since you left the U.S. At the end of March we found out that little Solomon's family decided not to give him in adoption. It was a very hard few weeks after that, but after a lot of prayer and spiritual growth God really gave both Jake and I a peace about it. We know that God is in control and will bring us the exact little boy that he is thinking of for us, all in His timing. Currently our adoption agency is finding a new child for us to adopt....still from Ghana. So, we are waiting to hear from them, and once we have word of a new child, we can then move forward with the adoption process. We are hoping that we can work on the adoption in October when Jake plans on coming to Ghana, but we will have to see where we are at in the process by then. Jake and I both still feel that God led us specifically to Ghana for this adoption, and so we are at peace knowing that we are looking in the right place....but being patient with the process has proved to be difficult, yet a great learning experience.

You wouldn't believe how much JJ is talking now! We just celebrated his birthday this week as he turned 3. JJ and Nana Yaw have become quite the buds, so much so that sometimes Jake has to remind JJ to let Nana Yaw work out when they are at the gym together. Sometimes JJ just wants to play and run around with him even when Nana Yaw is wanting to practice! Nana Yaw is so good with the kids! Whenever Jayla sees him she usually goes right up to him and begs for him to pick her up. She likes to poke him in the eyes and hit his cheeks with her hands! I am sure Nana Yaw told you that Jayla just started walking a few weeks ago. I think everything got so much easier now that she can just walk around and explore! She is so much more content now that she can get to where she wants to go.

I am including some pictures of the kids and Nana Yaw with this letter. I am also hoping to send you a DVD soon of one of Nana Yaw's games. You wouldn't believe his skill level right now....he was able to catch on so quickly and fix the movements and footwork that needed to be changed. He looks like a completely different player! Jake is thinking that Nana Yaw should hopefully be able to get some Division II college scholarship offers after this year if everything goes well. So exciting to think about!

We hope you and your family are doing well! I am sure you miss Nana Yaw so much! I will keep sending you updates and photos! Take care!

With Love,
Janel (and Jake, JJ, and Jayla)

Headed to the gym for a work out.

Playing in the Sunday summer night league with Des Moines Christian.

Jayla helps Yaw update his facebook.

JJ introduces Yaw to the Doodle Bops.

We introduced Yaw to our love of ladder golf...he played the all-time champion (me) and won....but it was getting dark by the end of the game so I didn't have my best game face on....we'll have to have a re-match in the daylight. :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Yes, No

Yes, JJ did mind sharing his birthday breakfast of choice: pizza sticks and sauce.

, he does not mind sharing his tub with splasher of the year.

, the swingset is fixed thanks to Mark & Kari over at Beautiful Blessings!

No, Jayla will never stop swinging now.

Yes, it's a busy day at the office.

No, it's never too busy for some hoops.

Yes, it's hard to catch a good picture of two crazies in the pool.

No, it's not hard to catch a picture of JJ & Daddy together.

Yes, she can reach the microwave.

No, she cannot get JJ's shoes on...but she tries to every day!

And yes, she is STILL swingin!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Happy Birthday JJ!

As of today I can boast to be the proud Momma of a 35.75 pound, 40.75 inch tall, 3 year old!
But, who could ever forget my sweet 7 pound 9 oz, 22 inch long bundle of boy joy that decided to make his entrance on my birthday, July 22, 2006!

I always smile when I think about the chances of all of it happening, and then I sometimes feel bad because JJ will always have to share his birthday with dear old MOM! Hopefully he will think it is as fun and unique of a bond as I do!

This year for our birthday party, my Mom hosted a BBQ for us at her place. It was so fun and relaxing to have someone else cook and prepare and clean and plan and host! Thanks mom! We asked JJ's friend Nyla and her family to come with us to help celebrate....we all played outside for a long time.

Of course a party isn't complete unless Jayla and lil J.J. are in the mix!

It was so nice to have Daddy all to ourselves!

The fresh, country air felt so good!

After we played, it was time to open presents!

Bet you can't guess who bought JJ this one!
(Ahem, Daddy is known for buying gifts that he wishes he could have)

Lookin good.

Wait, there is one last gift. Close your eyes! NO PEEKING!

What could it be?

(However, I can now say a few days later since JJ got this bike that actually getting him to ride it has- and will continue to be - an adventure....last month JJ witnessed his friend Nyla accidently crash into a fallen tree trunk on her bike, and he still has some fearful feelings that everyone who gets on a bike is going to crash into a tree. So, we'll have to see if he will ever actually ride this thing! Currently, he is determined that his little toosh will be found no where near the bike seat.)

4 birthday cakes?!?!?!

Yes, the birthday bond gets crazier....My mom was born July 23rd, JJ & I on July 22nd, and lil J.J. was born on July 23rd as well! Since we were all together, we had one big birthday blow-out!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Miss Tootles

It's so cute to watch Jayla tootle around. When she walks she takes the teeniest, tiniest, itty, bitty steps and keeps her arms tucked in and hands up like a dainty princess. She loves it when JJ walks by her or runs in front of her to cut her makes her laugh everytime.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Culture Smart

The People

The population of Ghana is growing so rapidly that census results are soon out of date. In 2008 estimates put the population around twenty-two million. Half of this number consists of those under sixteen years old.

The birth rate is 24 in 1000. Death rate is 11 in 1000. Infant mortality rate is 51 in 1000. Life expectancy is 56 years. The literacy rate is 80% for males, and 67% for females.

The most densely populated areas of Ghana are the cities of Accra, Kumasi, Sekondi-Takoradi, Tamale, and Tema.

Around fifty distinct groups can be found in modern Ghana – each has its own dialect, culture, history, and traditions. The five major groups are: Akan tribe (47% of Ghanaians). Those from this tribe speak varieties of Twi. Twi is also learned as a second language by many Ghanaians and can be considered the country’s unofficial lingua franca. The other main people groups are Ga-Adangbe people (8%), Ewe people (13%), Mole-Dagbani people (16%) and Gonja people (4%).

All tribes speak languages from the widely distributed Niger-Congo group. The official language for all is English. Despite tribal and linguistic differences, there is a strong feeling of “One Nation, One People, One Destiny”

Many Ghanaians live outside of Ghana, traveling to North America and Europe for educational and financial reasons. These people are often referred to as Ghanaians in the Diaspora, or as Diasporans.

Ghana has many famous people in the Diaspora who have made their mark in world affairs. The most celebrated is UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan. Others include numerous soccer players, 3-time world champ boxer Azumah Nelson, Super Bowl winner Joe Addai, and actors Freema Agyeman (Doctor Who) and Belinda Owusu (EastEnders).

Friday, July 17, 2009

God's Faithfulness

I wanted to look up some verses about God’s faithfulness, and I found a lot. Here are a few of my favorites:

Deuteronomy 7:9
Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commands.

Deuteronomy 32:4
He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.

Psalm 36:5
Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies.

Psalm 100:5
For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Lamentations 3:22-24
Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him."

1 Thessalonians 5:23-25
May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it.

2 Thessalonians 3:3
But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Only My Husband

On my way out the door this morning I saw this:

"Jake, why did you give the cats Lucky Charms to eat?" I asked.

"I was doing an experiment," he replied.

I asked for no further explanation.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Why do they put American Flags on top of cranes at construction sites?

Why is it called Buffalo Wild Wings when they are known for their chicken wings?

Why do my kids think the same food tastes better off my plate than theirs?

When did they stop putting toys in cereal boxes?

How do boys miss the toilet? Or, is this just the boys at my house?

Why can't I keep my lazy susan cupboard organized?

Why can't I ever find the aisle in the grocery store with the kitchen bouquet seasoning sauce?

Why did the pepsi people change their box for caffiene free diet pepsi? I keep buying the wrong one!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

In Milwaukee

On Sunday the munchkins and I drove up to Milwaukee to meet up with Jake and the teams for the last tournament on their first 10 day trip for July. Jake has been on the road with the teams for 7 days straight playing in back-to-back tournaments. The month of July is called the ‘live period’ for high school aged boys' teams. This means that the college coaches can be in attendance for the games, and can recruit and offer players scholarships. Since getting a scholarship is one of the top goals for the players in Jake’s program, Jake and the teams are out on the road pretty much the entire month of July so his players can play in front of the coaches. It’s kind of neat how it all works….here is a picture I took yesterday of all the coaches at one of Jake’s 17U boys games…all the guys sitting on the bleachers are either head coaches or their assistants:
They keep the coaches segregated on one side of the gym away from the parents and fans. They even have a separate entrance into the gym. Some coaches that were at this particular game were Coach McDermott from ISU, Coach Donovan from Florida, and Coach Duncan from UCLA…and many others as you can see.

After having Daddy withdrawl for 7 days, JJ was pretty excited to give Jake a big hug and a smooch right away! Here are some more pictures!

Everyone is thrilled to be taking ANOTHER group picture!

Daddy love.

Jayla was pretty happy to cruise along the bleachers after a long car ride!

"Hi Grum, we made it to Waukee!"

This picture reminds me so much of Jake! I don't know why!

The girls read to Jayla.

Jayla hangs with Coach Clark and tries to get into JJ's starbursts.

Getting some energy out with Pete!

Daddy struts to his game.

He used to stand exactly like this when he was playing (defense that is). :)

"Settle down fellas."

Watching the offense set up.

Time out pep talk.

Get in there Yaw!

"C'mon ref!"


3-pointer...WE WIN!
Life is good.