The Family

The Family

Monday, August 29, 2011

School Time!

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. 

 William Butler Yeats

Although our kids are homeschooled, we have decided to take advantage of a wonderful opportunity for Gideon this year and send him to an international school near our home.  Awesome, loving environment, small class sizes, respect for the environment and they teach CHINESE!  Gideon will even have the opportunity to go back to Beijing next summer with his class for their high school trip and revisit the country of his birth!  Very exciting!!

He started this past Thursday and loved his first two days so far.  Glad we are off to a good start!

I was able to get a couple pictures before we left the house

It was a foggy morning, but a beautiful day nonetheless

I think he was ready to jump out of the car and RUN to class he was so excited!

It has felt too quiet around the house while he has been gone!  The kids are already saying how much they miss him during the day.  Awwww!  He is such a sweetheart and such a fun kid!  It is easy to miss him.

As for the rest of the children, we are steadily making our way towards starting the school year as well.  We traditionally wait until after Labor Day, and this year is no exception-- especially since we schooled well into July because I had been gone for two weeks in January, then a week again in May.

We definitely all needed a good long rest and a break for our brains....... and some fun, relaxing time to bond with the newest member of our family!

Today, however, we have kicked it into gear.  All the children's curriculum is organized and replenished and ready to go for next week.  New pencils and pens have filled the pencil boxes, crisp new loose leaf paper is neatly clipped into the binders, and the crayons are fresh and pointy! 

I just LOVE this time of year, don't you??!!  Nothing like new school supplies to get me in a cheery mood.  (I know, I'm strange!)  But I have always loved them.  Back in elementary school, taking a trip to our little supply closet with a couple of dollars in hand was one of my favorite little treats.  I have always loved paper of all kinds, pens and books.

Ahh, books. 

I love Amazon.

I have a "wish list" that is three pages long, and a cart that is probably well over $100 worth right now.  Not that I can get it all.  :( 
But if I could, I would probably buy new books weekly.  Thus the reason why we are running out of shelf space!  Enter the KINDLE!

Evan is going to have to get one for sure this year.  It makes the most sense for him really since most of his curriculum is free literature that can be downloaded.  He is also the one I am the most focused on this year with homeschooling.  He is in his sophomore year of high school now.  I cannot believe that.  Sophomore.  WOW.

We have signed him up for a few outside classes this year too, ones I am not as well equipped to teach like Chemistry and Government and Economics.... and even one I am equipped to teach-- Essay writing-- (being that I was a journalism major and all).  But he would rather not learn that from me.  I think we need an outside helper for that one.  :)

We have a full course load this year for sure with a high-schooler down to a third grader, plus a second high-schooler  who I know will be coming home with all sorts of homework and projects.  But I am gearing myself up for it bit by bit, and hope to be in the full swing of things come next Tuesday.

So... Shakespeare, science, poetry, nature study, character study, 3rd,5th, 7th and 10th grade math, Bible study, creative writing, grammar, art study, composer study, literature and history........ HERE WE COME! 

(oh and I forgot horseback riding lessons, soccer times 6, Girl Scouts times 3, running club times 6, guitar lessons and sign language classes in our "free" time.  Are you exhausted yet??  I sure am!)

May the good Lord give me strength, and a good night's sleep each night.

Wishing you all the best for the coming school year!!

The question is not, -- how much does the youth know? when he has finished his education -- but how much does he care? and about how many orders of things does he care? In fact, how large is the room in which he finds his feet set? and, therefore, how full is the life he has before him?"
Charlotte Mason

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Gideon's Video

I am so excited to finally have this video finished! 
Since before Gideon came home, I knew that when he did, I wanted to do a video of pictures with him to this song--
This Is Home by Switchfoot.

This song makes me melt every time I hear it.  It is completely perfect for an adoption video and I think, I hope, it exemplifies what he is thinking about his new life here in our family.

This video is an accumulation of pictures from his first three months home in our family.  Three months of joy!  Joy and relief that he is in fact HOME!

Gideon has been such a blessing to us, it is amazing.  He makes us smile every day and makes us thank God continuously for all the people who have prayed for us and our adoption, and helped us finance it as well.  Thank you to everyone who helped bring this 6th ray of sunshine into our lives! 

Enjoy our video, and please click the pause button on my playlist below before watching.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Farewell To Summer!

We are back after our one final hurrah at the beach!!  It was a lovely few days and the kids had tons of fun jumping waves, boogie boarding, swimming, digging moats and burying themselves in the sand.  I feel so grateful and so blessed that we have had some fun trips this summer, and that Gideon has gotten to see so much of this amazing new country he has come to live in.

Drawing some Chinese symbols in the sand

Schuyler got to write 1-8 before the waves washed it away!  She is learning a lot from her new brother!

Tomorrow however, it is off to school for Mr. Gideon!  Summer is officially over for him as he ventures into his first year of high school.  Oh my goodness, I have two high school boys!  He is very excited about his new school, and for good reason.  It is an international school with many kids from all different backgrounds and many different countries.  AND their second language that they teach is Chinese!!  AND their end-of-the-year trip is to................................... BEIJING!!  Can you believe!!??  Very excited indeed.

We are very fortunate and blessed to have this school just seven minutes from our home.  It is a charter school too, so even though it is public, it has the small class atmosphere of a private school.  This means lots of one-on-one attention for Gideon and lots of help with learning English too! 

We went to his open house last night and EVERY single teacher knew who we were  :)

They had already been told they were going to have a Chinese speaking student in their class and most have already made special preparations for him so that he can understand their assignments.  Very cool indeed.

I think this will be the PERFECT place for him to spend his first year of education here in the US.  I thing some great things will be coming out of our wonderful (and very smart) boy this year!  Can't wait!  (and neither can he).

So happy schooling everyone!  From the crazy Rowe clan-----

Saturday, August 20, 2011


Just wanted you all to know that Liliana has found a family!! 

Thanks to wonderful Adeye at "No Greater Joy Mom" advocating for this child on her blog, more than $23,000 was raised for her ransom!!!!  That is 107% of what she was trying to raise in the first place!

I am so blessed to be part of an adoption community that advocates for these children, prays for these children and allows God to work through them so that amazing things can happen!  Our God is an awesome God, and thanks to Him working in the hearts of gracious people, this child has enough money for a family to bring her HOME!

Thanks to all who read the posts, prayed fervently and contributed to her cause!

God sets the lonely in families
Psalm 68:6

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Crying Out for Help

I think by now it is pretty clear that many of my prayers and much of my heart belongs to the orphans of this world.  But you may not really, truly realize their plight and how extreme it is, especially for special needs children in orphanages, until you see pictures like these:

These are pictures of sweet Liliana, an orphan in Eastern Europe with Down Syndrome.  Do you know what makes these pictures extremely horrifying??  Liliana is ELEVEN years old.  Yes, you heard me right.  Eleven.

She is tiny, emaciated, starving away at only 10 pounds.  TEN pounds!  The size of a two month old!!!!

How is it possible not to be outraged at something like this?!!??  How is it possible to think-- as Adeye mentions in her post below-- that this is "Someone else's problem"?? 

As God's children we are called to care for all of His creation.  We are especially called to care for the orphans and the widows of this world who don't have anyone else to look out for their needs.

Please, Please go to the following blog post by Adeye at No Greater Joy Mom.....

Adeye is having a fundraiser for this child with some wonderful prizes to give away as well.  Please consider donating to this child's fund so that this little one might find a family to bring her home and give her all the care, nourishment and love that she has been sorely lacking!!

The world's children ARE our problem.  We can't just sit by and say that this doesn't matter just because it isn't in our own backyard.  We can't harden our hearts and try to forget that there are children out there like Liliana who are suffering. 

So, so many.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Rolling Right Along.....

Oh dear summer, you go fleeting by!  Why do you go so fast?!

I am beginning to realize that our lazy days are winding down.  Before I know it, school time will be upon us and I really don't feel ready for that yet.  So, I am going to try to make the most of the lazy days we have left!

Evan and Gideon started soccer practice today.  Gideon did so well!  I could just kick myself for not taking any pictures, I will try to remember to this Saturday. 

His teammates were all so sweet and kind to him!  They made it a point to ask him his name and introduce themselves, and give him a pat on the back or call out some encouraging words when he made a good pass or scored a goal during practice.  Made this momma's heart swell.

My dear sweet boy.  So brave to be trying all these new things with all these strange people at his age, when he still can't even communicate well with them yet.  He is really incredible.

On another note, the girls are coming home tomorrow too!  :)
They have been having tons of fun at Grandma and Grandpa's house, but we are ready for them to be back here with us now.  They have had all sorts of wonderful adventures-like kayaking- and have done all kinds of fun activities like baking and going to the movies and getting their nails done!  I know they have appreciated all the special treatment and loved every minute of it!!

We at home have been having a blast helping out with the Ukrainian orphans here for the hosting program in Raleigh.  We go up again for our last visit this Thursday to take them to the lake.  That should be fun! 

There are so many sweet boys and girls looking for a home.  I really find it hard to believe that only a few have committed families so far!  I will be doing a post on them in the next couple of days, but please, if you are interested at all in finding out more about these children, please email me at or leave me a comment below and I will be happy to get you more information.  Take a look at some of their sweet faces.......

These kids are incredibly brave too--- coming to a foreign country, living with host families who only speak English for three weeks and hoping with all their might that someone picks them to be their child.  I don't know if I could have done that at 7, or 10, or 13.  They are all outstanding children, and our family is blessed beyond measure to have met them and been able to help out with this program even a little bit.  It has brought us great joy and a renewed devotion to the plight of the orphans in this world.

Everyone  Everyone  Everyone  in this world deserves a family.

Please take time to pray for the orphans.
Pray especially that these precious children find families.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

More Pictures!

Just had a few more (better quality) pics I wanted to share now that my hubby has downloaded them from the camera.  FINALLY got one decent enough to put at the top of this blog with all the kids in it!  Still need to get our family photos taken, so this is the best I have right now.  Just happy to have one with all six kids in it! 

Six kids... whew!  Never thought I would say that, but they are all such fun.  Loving every minute of being a mommy to 6!!!

So here are a few more pictures from our summer.......... Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The Girls

Georgia and Kierstyn are still in Florida, living it up with Grandma and Grandpa!  Wanna see what they did today?????

Paddled down the Weekie Watchie River!
Look at that crystal clear water!!
Looks like fun to me.

And thank you Grandma and Grandpa!!!!