A Welsh family update is l-o-n-g overdue!
Has it really been over seven months since we last shared on the blog? The time has sped past, and so many things have been going on in our lives. Kevin and I are both hoping to get back to blogging and use this outlet to share things that are on our hearts.
First, let me catch you up on Masha...she is an absolute JOY in our lives! She has fit into our family so easily. This little sweetie, who had asked the Ukrainian social worker so many times for a Mama and Papa, has adjusted beautifully. From the beginning she has been eager to be a part of everything…chores, school, outings…she makes sure she is a part of it! She came home into a schedule full of basketball games, track meets, all kinds of school activities, and doctor appointments—all in a language she didn’t know--- and she has thrived! Of course, we slowly saw her acquisition of English growing over time; then one day in June, she announced to me, “I can’t speak Ukraine any more!” And I realized she couldn’t. (I think it was more bittersweet for me than for Masha; she just stated it like a fact and moved on.) And she is very talkative! She doesn’t have all the intricacies of the language down, but she’s completely understandable…and adorable with her Ukrainian accent J
School Easter egg hunt
Another huge change this year for us came with the birth of our first grandchild! Our son Jordan and his bride Erica gave birth to a precious little girl, Ila, in April. She was early due to some complications for Erica, so we spent the weeks ahead of her birth praying for her and Erica’s health. Ila spent a few days in the nicu, but she is healthy and beautiful and just perfect. This grandparent thing is pretty sweet!
Sweet baby Ila
The day before Ila was born, we were awakened at 3:30 am with a phone call. I expected it to be Jordan calling to tell us Ila was on the way. But instead it was a call that a barn on one of our real estate properties was on fire! Kevin raced to the house, only to find the barn was a total loss. It wasn’t until he called home that we both realized all we had stored in that barn…childhood treasures (ours and the kids), furniture (my grandmother’s dining table, Kevin’s granddad’s worktable, a toddler bed Kevin’s great-granddad had built for him). It hit us pretty hard. There are still times I remember something I hadn’t thought of previously that was in that barn. Still, the Lord reminded us that all of these things were just that…things…and we don’t need to be tied to perishable things. We were thankful no one was hurt and that the barn was easily rebuilt.
Thankful for volunteer firefighters!
The biggest transition for us right now is that we are back to homeschooling… mostly. We had homeschooled for 17 years before we put the kids (the 6 at home at the time) in a wonderful Christian school two years ago. Mary Cate, our oldest daughter, knew she wanted to homeschool now to finish a little earlier than she would have at school. For the others, we prayed back in the spring that the Lord would make it clear to us if we should keep them in school. This is nothing new as we pray this prayer every year. This past spring, however, I began to feel like the Lord was preparing me for homeschooling, especially the four youngest of our children. It seemed that every adoption-related issue we were having could be better addressed at home, full-time. Also, Judson, our teenaged son, wanted to be homeschooled because he absolutely loves working with his dad any chance he gets (like rebuilding a barn!). With homeschooling, he can do that around his schoolwork. By June, our answer was clearly before us, and we filled our shelves with curriculum once again! Our only child still in school is our ever-social Anna Grace, still at the same school and loving it. She is involved in lots of extracurricular activities and doing well, so it made sense for her to stay.
The Homeschooled Bunch
So what’s next for the Welsh Bunch? Kevin and I make it a point to pray daily for the Lord to open our eyes and our hearts to needs around us. He has been faithful to answer that prayer! There is never a shortage of opportunities to serve IF we are seeking them. In fact, one of the Welshes is leaving soon to head out on an exciting mission trip! We’re excited to share about it in an upcoming blog post and introduce you to a ministry that we have been blessed to support!
The Welsh Bunch (the part that's still at home anyway)
But that one will have to wait til next time!