Saturday, November 29, 2008


We had a busy day bouncing back from Thanksgiving & Black Friday! Busy packing, cleaning and getting ready for our trip to NYC. Thank goodness, Good Ol' Charlie Brown is still on the boob tube and a hit with all kids! Our 6 littles sat mesmerized while we finished our last minute packing. Wyatt is sacked out under his blankie!
The 2 baby boys will go to one friends house, 2 little girls to another and the older 2 to Grandma and Papa's!

Of course you can't leave town without some kind of major stress or emergency :) Jett fell on our granite counter top earlier and split his chin wide open! Thankfully, my friend Gayle came down and watched the kids so both Nick and I could go watch our super human doctor put super human super glue on his chinny chin chin! Praise God for no shot or stitches (brings back traumatizing last trip to ER with Wyatt being wrapped in what the ER DR called "the human burrito" while he received shots and stitches)-whoever invented this SUPER HUMAN SUPER SKIN GLUE is surely SUPER RICH!Please Keep us all in your prayers as we travel away from our babies (VERY TOUGH) We will talk you all you beautiful blogging people when we return!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

The kids are thankful for...................
Brendan........Air, Water, Food
Tori.....My House, My Friends, My Animals
Myah......Our Toys, God, Mommy
Caty......Mommy, Daddy, Colors
Wyatt......Tractors, Juice, Daddy
Jett...........Daddy, Juice, Night Night
The kids had a WONDERFUL surprise walk through the door about 3:30pm today-DADDY!! He got to come home from work a whole day early and surprised them! As you can see they are very THANKFUL!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING FROM MY TURKEY'S TO YOURS! May you all have a blessed day!
The only thing missing today was Brooke :(
She is with her boyfriends family today! We miss you Brooke!

Also....SO EXCITED that I actually get to make it to BLACK FRIDAY in the morning-Tori and I will head out at 3 or 4am to hit KOHL'S!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I have been emotionally consumed by this blog. The story is WORTH reading from start to end. It hits close to home since my husband is a pilot and we too have a small personal Cessna aircraft. It is the story of Stephanie and Christian Nielson a young, vibrant and in-love couple and a plane crash on August 16, 2008 where they were both critically burned-sweet Stephanie over 80% of her body. They were both in medically induced comas for months while Christian and "Nie Nie's" 4 kids age 6 and under have been cared for by Nie's sister Courtney since the accident. Nie Nie and Courtney's blogs were both VERY POPULAR before the crash as they are very talented writers. The blogging community has come out since the crash to raise more than $250,000 for the couples hospital bills.

Both blogs are inspiring and their story is a real story of love, courage, compassion, family, loyalty, faith and suffering. You will be thankful you read their beautiful story.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Okay, so I wasn't totally honest about the death by DING DONGS... BUT this potty training thing has got me about ready to be that mom. Yes, I'm thankful they are out of diapers but with the MADNESS of potty training 4 little ones, it could make a mom desperate enough do almost anything to include submitting to the box of Ding Dongs calling from the hidden spot up in the MOMMY ONLY area of the highest cabinet.

I have consciously noticed that I've spent a crap load (crap load-get it?) of time in the bathroom lately. But yesterday I felt like I should just do school, laundry and move my pillow and blankie into the crapper and just work from there. I kept a tally of my time spent in there yesterday-OVER 30 times & almost 2 1/2 hours total-I plopped those 4 babes on the pot, wiped those little hineys and washed those darling little paws UGH! The main problem is PEER PRESSURE! When one of those little boogers has to go, they all just drop their drawers like it's the coolest new idea on the block! Then..the peer pressure even trickles down to me and before you know it I'm on the doggone pot too!

We have a "waiting line" outside the potty and as you can see, it's usually a full line!

I have shared & confessed my 2 a day "Ding Dong DIET" with people closest to me so I figured I would share it with my closest blog friends too. I normally eat 2 a night (after the kids are SOUNDLY sleeping-I ain't sharin' my Dongs peeps) and after the first one, my nerves IMMEDIATELY CALM! The last couple of days spent in the privy I have been tempted to go for 3 and I'm proud of me that I didn't fall into temptation-yay me. So, for all you moms out there who ate Ding Dongs in your childhood....Ding Dongs are making a come back!! I've eaten 2 a day since October and darn it, it makes me feel so good inside! What's worse eating Ding Dongs every day or being a ding dong? Okay so both apply to me! Seems the more kids I have the ding dongier I get! Glad I got that off my chest. Goodnight!

Monday, November 24, 2008


Nick got a call last Friday that The Tyra Banks Show is interested in our story/my child advocacy work. They are taping a special to be aired before the Christmas holidays about women who have dedicated their lives to a worthy cause!

I feel so blessed to be able to get our story out there and raise awareness about 2 things I am PASSIONATE about-Adoption AND Drug Endangered Children-changing the laws to make moms testing positive for Illegal Substances during pregnancy face mandatory rehabilitation until the birth of their babies. Thank you Lord for giving us this opportunity.
We will be leaving for NYC on November 30th and flying home December 3rd. Please be in prayer with us that all we say & do will glorify HIM! AND we will be sending our kids 3 different places, just pray for their care givers and that we remain healthy and things will run smoothly!
Isaiah 1:17

Saturday, November 22, 2008


Meet Malinche.... Our ADORABLY SWEET DOLPHIN we met in Cozumel, Mexico! I just got the pictures back today. If ANYONE has a chance to do this with your kids this is THE BOMB! She is 10 years old-dolphins live be 50..I had NO idea they could live this long!

Nick is tired of me saying "Once in a lifetime experience" But it truly was! Our kids got to kiss, dance with and get up close and personal with Malinche.

God truly made a Gorgeous animal when he created the dolphin! Thank you God for dolphins!

LOVE DARE....Simple things

I love my husband so much. We are on day 4 of "The Love Dare". For those of you who don't know, it's a 40 day marriage challenge/Bible study that is featured in the movie FIREPROOF. So, me being a night owl and Nick an early bird, I left him a note on his coffee cup last night and even set the coffee maker to start at his normal wake up time 6am. It simply says "Good Morning, I love you." As I rolled out of bed at 8am I found the note on my cup reading "BACK AT CHU!" How SWEET is that?

It is truly the simple things that make you feel loved. Easy, free things to remind those we truly love that we care about them.

Love truly IS a decision and marriage takes work-HARD WORK.

I always miss Nick when he leaves for his 7 days at work. He leaves in an hour. I already feel I will miss him EVEN MORE this week while he is gone. Thank you God for giving us a new appreciation of each other and our marriage.

Friday, November 21, 2008


All our days seem this way...Wild yet NORMAL for us!

I was gone all day with a friend shopping and "hanging out." We live quite a ways from anything except Wal-Mart so if someone is "going to the big city" we often go together or pick things up for each other that we can't get here. Thank God for on-line shopping! ANYWAY... I had to get 2 of the kids social security numbers changed over into their new adopted names before taxes so off I went. It was a good day but every time I go anywhere, I feel "rushed."

I arrived home late afternoon and helped dad get all the kids dressed so we could take B & T to a birthday party (which was about a 30 minute drive). Then on to take the 4 littles out to eat. We got the kids dropped off and Wyatt said "Dad, you're driving fast, makes me have to pee pee." (Actually he was NOT driving fast but driving on gravel.)

We arrive at Pizza Hut and start to unload and Nick feels the wetness as he unstraps Wyatt's car seat EWWW! Not just a little pee pee but more like a gusher! The only clothes I had on hand were a pink sweater and pink/blue striped girl pants so we WERE just going to put them on him until he nearly had a heart attack "I CAN'T WEAR GIRL PANTS!" So there goes my DEAR HUSBAND running across the parking lot of Pizza Hut, Running across the super Wal-Mart parking lot and he disappeared into the night. All 5 of us waited in anticipation for SUPER DAD to return. He finally came back-we got the new clothes on and ate our quiet family dinner-just the 6 of us! OKAY so there was NOTHING quiet about it :)

I am thankful for all 7 of my children tonight, my SUPER HUSBAND and my WILD LIFE!

It has been wonderful having Nick home for 3 weeks on vacation. We put our REAL FAKE Christmas tree up yesterday since he will be gone for Thanksgiving. He leaves tomorrow SO, I am off to Wal-Mart RIGHT NOW to make my weekly shopping trip & I'm tired. I have to double/triple check my list since all I buy tonight will have to last a week until he gets home and darn it... I ALWAYS forget SOMETHING! That is unless I want to drag 6 kids into Wally World and that is NOT FUN..TRUST ME! Good night, God Bless and have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 20, 2008


I wonder as I look at this picture of Caty and Wyatt-(basically twins, just 3 weeks apart in age.)Will they love one another this much as they grow older? Will they tell each other their secrets OR tell ON one another? Anyway, who cares? They are adorable now right?-that's all that matters. I know God's got their futures all planned out & I am so thankful for both of these little angels placed in our arms.

I also wonder if baby Jett will always be that funny, sneaky, pesky little baby brother..hmmm

"I KNOW YOU PEEPS ARE SLEEPING but WAKE UP-Grandma's on the phone!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Sneak Peak Into PDD-NOS Caty's Obsession!

Part of Caty's Atypical Autism aka PDD-NOS is her obsession with things & repetitive (we're talking hundreds of times) request for things. She has been obsessed with "makeup" for a LONG time (several months). Makeup to her is chap stick, lip gloss, nail polish, eye shadow or lotion-basically anything you can SMEAR on. I bought her this makeup at Wal-Mart tonight and in less than 2 hours, almost all was gone, used by her on herself and her siblings! She will literally roll/smear this on over and over and over and over some more. She loves the stuff & is very serious about it. No one better touch her makeup either or your head may roll.

Just a little peak inside Caty's little world. We love her for she is FEARFULLY AND WONDERFULLY MADE! We love you Caty whether a-natural OR covered in makeup!
As I finish this post she is literally stomping & SCREAMING for her makeup over and over which has been put up for tonight.

Our Cruise Highlights!

Our vacation started off with a 3 hour drive to the airport. Our flight was at 4:30 so we left at 11am-stopped at McDonald's and fed the kids on the way while they watched the new Tinkerbell movie. Jett never did eat, he fell asleep practically at the end of the driveway! The BIG highlight is that NO ONE had ANY accidents/puking the entire way there WOO HOO-We have come such a long way! We got to our meeting spot with our friend & babysitter Jamie around 2pm-went to another McDonald's there, pottied and had a snack break. Then we headed to THE PARKING SPOT to park our vehicles and get on the shuttle to the airport-which may sound easy but with 6 kids and a ton of bags...not so much. We packed backpacks full of "stuff to do" and luckily grandma sent a bunch of dum dum suckers-don't know where we would be without these as our flight was delayed almost 2 hours!

Here is Tori buckling Jett in for his first airplane ride! We got to our hotel in Tampa about 10pm-we were all exhausted and HUNGRY!!! We ordered pizza and retreated to our separate boy/girl rooms and crashed! We got up early, packed up and dressed, ate breakfast and headed out around 11am to start our cruise!Here are the kiddos in front of the beautiful Embassy Suites in downtown Tampa. Jett's trying to take a dip in the fountain
Here's Tori waiting to get on the ship!

Here we are during the "muster drill" This was required in case of any "TITANIC" type crashes or emergencies-very stressful with 4 toddlers!

Our first day was spent at sea-The water park and waterslides & 24 hour ice cream on board SAVED US! They were SO FUN!! 1 large waterslide and 2 small to keep the big kids busy and tons of water stuff for the little ones to play in that weren't too deep all while mom & dad lounged in our chairs in the sun AHHHHHH!

It wouldn't be a TRUE CRUISE experience without towel animals and an ice cream swan! The kids thought this was over the top fun!!

Our first port was Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands-BEAUTIFUL as you can see. We opted to leave baby baby Jett on board at Camp Carnival for a nominal fee. We took a taxi to the beach and just played in the sand & water for a few hours, it was truly gorgeous and FUN! The highlight was seeing Nick get buried in the sand by the kids!

Caty even found makeup in the Cayman Islands LOL! We ate then played in the water park on the ship the rest of the afternoon and as you can see that ocean wears ya' out!
That evening we got on our "fancy duds" and went to dinner in the dining room-just Nick and I. We left Jett with Jamie. We didn't even get sat down when our Camp Carnival special RADAR CELL PHONE rang telling us Wyatt was flipping his lid SO... there I sat at the table alone while Nick went to get him. We started in eating and RING RING there the phone went again and this time it was Caty-Nick again went to get her and take her to be with Wyatt and Jamie. Needless to say, our romantic evening didn't happen. Nick retreated to "the boys room" and I to "the girls room" and to bed we went anticipating our day in Cozumel. Surely that would go smoother right?

As soon as we got off the ship, it was BEAUTIFUL once again. This time we were pulled up directly to the dock where in Grand Cayman we were tendered in (meaning we had to ride a smaller boat to get to the island). We again opted to leave baby Jett on board with the Camp Carnival staff. We were bound and determined to let the kids swim with the dolphins but through Carnival this was very expensive. We decided to take a taxi to CHANKANAAB National Park and try to negotiate The Dolphin Discovery on our own AND......IT WORKED! Nick negotiated a more than fair price for our ONCE IN A LIFETIME dolphin experience! The little ones had a complete blast, they got to get in the water, dance with and get kissed on the lips by a real live dolphin! It was truly worth every penny!

Brendan met up with a pirate in Mexico-we thought he was a statue but he was REAL! VERY COOL! Nick walked and carried a lot of weight this trip-love those biceps! Here he is walking about a 1/2 mile with Myah on his shoulders and Wyatt in the front! OUCH!

The last day at sea was cloudy and not so fun so we stayed inside and ate and the kids went to Camp Carnival for their "going away" party! They decorated t-shirts, backpacks and the counselors decorated them! Aren't my 2 butterflies adorable? Caty and Wyatt opted out of Camp Carnival but Myah, Brendan and Tori LOVED IT and had a great time!
Overall, this vacation was extremely stressful at times but SO WORTH IT! Our kids would have never been able to experience something like this in their other lives and Nick and I teared up just thinking of it. Like I told someone else, everywhere we go is a bit stressful-(shoot going to Pizza Hut is a lot of work) and EVERYWHERE we go is a LOT of work but our kids deserve these fun experiences & we did it for them! No matter what vacation we would have been on, the results would have been the same-more times were felt being blessed than ever being stressed!

To see all the pictures from our trip click HERE!
I am SO READY to pack up and go again.... THIS TIME WITH ONLY MY HUSBAND!!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Out of the Mouth of my BABE.....

I had to quickly share in a "special moment" today at our lunch table. It was Wyatt's prayer that touched Nick and I immensely. As a newly turned 3 year old it is amazing to us to see God's work in his life and sweet little heart.

"Dear Jesus, Help me be a big boy, help all the kids who don't have homes, help Brooke at boot camp (she's been back since August LOL) and thank you God that we have a house full of kids." AMEN
That little man said it all.....for all of us!

Saturday, November 15, 2008


We just got back from our "date night" with our church family to see "FIREPROOF" No words can describe the awesomeness of this movie. If you haven't seen it yet, PLEASE take time to see it. As we see our country seems to be darkening right now, this movie brings God's LIGHT into the world. On the way home, I bought "THE LOVE DARE" book and Nick and I plan on doing it together.

Happy 3rd Wyatt Clifton! Three 3 year olds!

As we celebrated Wyatt's 3rd birthday on the cruise, I pondered his entry into this world and am baffled by the way God orchestrated the entire thing.

We already had Brooke, Brendan, Victoria and Myah AND just 3 weeks before Wyatt, we were blessed with Caty. The uncertainty of knowing whether his birth mother would in fact sign her rights over was hanging above us. The actual birth experience was Nick's first. We both cried like babies as we supported his birth mom while she labored to bring him into this world. It was a very emotional time for all of us. She hadn't seen Brendan and Tori in a couple years so she and I stayed up ALL NIGHT watching home videos I brought for her to watch of them and just talking, catching up and bonding with each other.

God led us to her about 4 months before Wyatt was born. Just a couple months before we met her, Wyatt's biological father committed suicide. She was having a rough time. We actually found her because we wanted Brendan & Tori to have an open relationship with her. We had also heard she was pregnant. Nick and I flew down in our small plane to meet her one day, took her out to eat and told her if she EVER needed help, we would be there for her. Just a couple months later, I drove 4 hrs. down to take her to court. Before court we did a devotion, prayed and ate. The judge ended up sending her to jail right then and there. I was shocked. The good thing was, she was placed in jail a while but then in a women's correctional facility just over an hour from us for the duration of her pregnancy with Wyatt. It was during this time that she decided to let Nick and I adopt Wyatt although there was a lot of waffling in her decision. Such a sacrificial decision to allow Brendan and Tori to be raised with their brother.

On November 10, 2005 we became the parents to our sweet, screaming black haired baby boy!

He is a precious gift to ALL of us!

On November 11th, Brendan & Tori got to see their birth mom who they hadn't seen in 2 years, it was a beautiful day!
On November 12th she returned to prison to serve out her term. We visited her once a week for the 1st 6 weeks of Wyatt's life! She was released the next summer and we were there to pick her up and take her to her new home. Thank you God for her and our sweet Wyatt!


For 3 short months we will be the parents to THREE 3 year olds!