The middle “saints” on Valentine’s Day

What? I’m going to post about Valentine’s Day? But I haven’t even posted about Christmas. I know and I don’t know if I’ll ever get around to it. Anyway, this is a Valentine’s Day post and that’s that. I want to show you the middles’ Valentine’s cards! They are so cute! So, here are the photos that I started with…

And Mikey’s…

So then I did a tiny bit of Photoshop work and ended up with this, which I ordered as 5X7 prints. These are things that they actually say a lot.

And here is the finished product. I planned Mikey’s a little poorly. The sucker covered up the text. Oh well.

Pretty dang cute, huh? And I even got my website in there. Sneaky. Here are a few more pictures of the middles from today. They’re iphone pics.

Making cards for their teachers this morning before school.

Brittany dressed all cute before school.

And here’s Mikey being a weirdo with a sticker on his eye. We don’t know why.

And here’s a video of Mikey explaining what he thinks about Valentine’s Day. I’m sort of embedding it using facebook. I have no idea if it’ll even work or not.

And so while I was taking their pictures for their cards, I had to take more pictures just for the heck of it. Here are some of my favorites.

Were Jack and Katie neglected today? Pretty much. 😉

My girl

A little girl at the park. A girl with dimples and yellow hair. A girl who wants to wear more jewelry than I would ever wear. A girl who would paint her world pink if she could. A girl who’s grown and changed a lot in the past year. A girl who loves. A little girl. My little girl.

More at

Moooo! I is a cow.

Monday and Tuesday Brittany dressed as a cow for her preschool Christmas program. Most of these pictures are from Monday. While we waited for the cow to come on stage and sing, the little one sat fairly nicely and waited…

I didn’t have a very good view of Brittany and didn’t get many pictures. Plus, I had the little one in my lap.

And then we sat and had some cookies. I assure you, her hair looked much cuter when we left the house.

I had a better seat on Tuesday, but didn’t get many pictures at all. I had Mikey with me and I had to keep him from melting a few times. He has issues with lovely, soft music. And he kept having to tell me what Brittany was doing or not doing on stage. But once we got home, I took a few pictures of Brittany in front of the tree. She’s pretty cute. Her expression in the middle one is pretty funny.

She wanted a mommy and daddy

Brittany wanted a mommy and a daddy so bad. Mimi told me that. Mimi and Poppa are the amazing and loving couple who fostered Brittany (and Katie) until they found us. Mimi and Poppa love her dearly, but they weren’t her mommy and daddy. Brittany tried to call them that. Because that’s what little kids do with their caregivers sometimes.

Imagine how it was for her. Learning to talk and not having anyone to call “Mommy.” Watching shows about and reading books about kids who have mommies and daddies. Being in mother’s day out, but having no mother. Maybe remembering a time when you think you had a mommy, but not really knowing where she is or if you even want to be with her.

And then one day Phillip and I showed up at her house. We showed a great deal of interest in her. We played with her and read to her. And she was ready, almost from the first day we met, to call us Mommy and Daddy. Strangers that she didn’t know. She was so desperate for a mommy and daddy.

How do kids do that? How do they love like that? How do they trust like that? Especially after being let down in the worst way. How was she ready to leave the home and family she’d known for over a year to come live with people she did not know? How could she be that brave at 2 1/2?

She wanted a mommy and a daddy. And so she willingly took us in. It might seem like we took her in, but she took us in first. She loved us first. She accepted us perfectly first. She put her fears aside for us first. With reckless abandon, she claimed us first. And she has patiently and lovingly waited for us to catch up. Forgiving our failures quicker than we’ve forgiven hers at times.

Brittany has displayed a picture of the fruits of the spirit while we have struggled with our new normal. Gentleness, patience, self-control, love, peace, joy, faithfulness, goodness, kindness… She has displayed all of these things better than we have.

I hope that we’re worth it. I hope that we were worth her wait. I hope that we will be more than she dreamed a mommy and daddy could be, instead of less. We’re catching up with her, by the way. But she definitely paved the way.

Columbus Day

So Monday was Columbus Day. And I don’t know if that’s why Britt didn’t have school or what, but anyway she didn’t. And since I can’t keep up with everything, I missed the memo that there was no school for her. So I got her ready and took her to school. I honestly had to fight back tears when I realized she didn’t have school that day. That meant all four kids at home with me all morning. And they had already been awake for like 2 hours. But I sucked it up and we went home and we survived. And we even managed to listen to some kid music, make some junk out of construction paper, and take some pictures that I love.

So I guess you could say that we made the best of our Columbus Day. The “topless” pictures were before I didn’t take her to school.

Here Mikey is “just teaching Brittany how to snap” but it pretty much looks like he’s trying to cast a spell on her. She obviously doesn’t trust him. I just can’t imagine why.

Beautiful girl.

Where to begin…

Today we adopted the girls. Where do I begin? I’ve got hundreds of pictures and words that I *want* to share. How about I just begin at the beginning? But I don’t have time at this moment to write a novel or even really a decent story. But I do have time to post a picture of the very first time Brittany met her daddy. (It’s a phone pic) She warmed up to him in about 30 minutes.

And I have time to post one of the first pictures I ever took of Katie with her daddy.

And the first photos of our four kids together.

So we’ll just start there for today. We’ll have adoption pictures to share soon. Thanks for loving our family. Thanks for praying for us.


Sometimes we play store. We don’t do it often enough. The kids love it and it really keeps them pretty occupied for a while, relatively speaking. These photos are from a month or two ago. I can’t keep up. We put “price tags” on the stuff and I help them pay for their groceries with their money. Mikey takes the role of cashier very seriously. He doesn’t want to be called Mikey. He wants to be called Grocery Man or Grocery Worker Man or some other strange variation on that. Brittany just kind of does what we tell her to do. I decided that Brittany’s checkout lady alias should be Flow.


She almost never wants to go play outside with Mikey, but once they’re out there together they play and talk and have lots of fun together.

She climbs all over people she doesn’t know just because her brother is doing it.

She has learned to eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and now is perfectly happy to eat that at every meal.

She often says “It’s in my wedgie” instead of “I have a wedgie.”

She still doesn’t want Phillip to kiss her because of his beard. She actually gave him a quick peck on the lips the other night and got grossed out and said, “It got in my mouth!” We’re guessing “it” was the beard. It was pretty funny.

She is pretty good at hugging and loving a toy that she wants right out of Katie Jade’s hands without her even noticing what has happened.

She still tries to boss the boys around even though they in no way do what she tells them to.

She always wants to give me a hug and a kiss before I leave her somewhere.

She starts five day preschool soon. She’ll do great and she will love it. Mikey says he’s going to miss her.

She ends lots of her sentences in “…so…” As in, “I want a drink, so…” or “I need to go potty, so…” I don’t know exactly know why she’s started doing this. It kind of reminds me of the Kristin Wiig “Penlope” skits. This isn’t embedding right. Whatever. There’s probably an ad you have to watch before the skit starts.

She will very soon be Brittany Danielle Hintze.

She has a beautiful dimpled face that we’ll be able to show very soon.