Friday, May 28, 2010

Haiti Update - Request for Prayers

I wanted to make everyone aware that Brent's going to Haiti next week.  He'll be traveling with the other non-profit we've partnered with and with students from the U of U School of Architecture.  They'll be visiting the property that we've purchased and assessing it as well as visiting some other orphanages in the area to find out what works and what doesn't about their buildings.

I haven't talked a lot about what we've found out about Jessica in the last few months.  People don't understand how things work in Haiti and how the culture is there.  Harry tells us that Jessica's birth father is "a devil man" and that he threatened Jessica's birth mother that he would kill Jessica if the birth mother tried to regain custody of Jessica.  We've also been told that the birth father has a sister that has told him she'll send him a monthly support check "as long as he has Jessica".  So our Miss Jess is a cash cow for him.  

Jessica was granted Humanitarian Parole the same day Nathan was, so technically, we'd be able to bring her home if the birth father changes his mind again.  

With that in mind, the other thing we hope to accomplish on this trip is to make contact with Jessica and her birth father.  As wonderful as it has been to finally be parents and to have Nathan home, it still doesn't feel "right".  It doesn't seem like it's supposed to be just Nathan.  It's been a real struggle, particularly for Brent because he saw the conditions she's living in.  It still feels like Miss Jess is our little girl.

We're praying that Brent and Harry are able to find Jessica and her birth father and that they'll find Jessica to be healthy and happy.  We're also praying that we'll at least be able to find peace about this situation if it's truly not meant for Jessica to be part of our family.

We're praying for miracles.

We ask that you join us with your prayers (or at least your positive thoughts if you're not the praying kind) that we'll be able to get some sort of resolution and peace with this trip. 

Thank you for your continued love and support,

Brent and Lori

Sunday, May 23, 2010

"It's Not That I'm a Waffle Racist - I Just Like Mine White"

Heard someone at work say that this last week. And I totally agree. Waffles and cookies shouldn't be crispy (in my opinion).

We've been a bit under the weather all the way around this last bit. I've vacillated between having no voice and doing my best "Marge the Queen of the Trailer Park" impersonation this last week. The funny part is that Nathan's taken to trying to imitate me. He's one funny kid.

He's decided he lives the movie, "Cars". I love to hear him ask for it because when he says "Lightening McQueen" it comes out "Miney All Clean".

He's also slightly obsessed with the "Move It Move It" song from Madagascar. We're quickly approaching the point where we either need to "ruin" the DVD or you'll have to commit Brent and/or me to an instution!

Plus, it's only slightly maddening when you're trying to teach your 2-year old how to be reverent in Church and he keeps yelling, "No, Mama!  I like to move it move it!"

Love my Little Man!  Even more than I love blond waffles.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Crud, Crud, Go Away...

Spent the evening at the Urgent Care. Brent has pneumonia again. He coughed so hard he blacked out in front of the doctor and kinda fell out of the chair.

The doc thought about admitting him to the hospital, but I told him Brent's a stubborn ox.

Nathan has been just awesome and patient with all these doctor/hospital visits lately. He's a very good boy.

Now if we could just get Brent to bed since rest is what he needs right now.

Stubborn, stubborn, stubborn....

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Sometimes, It's the Little Things

Life has been busy, busy, busy lately and I haven't been very good about staying on top of things.  Plus there's crud going around our house - Brent's hacking like he did when he returned from Haiti this last time and Nathan's nose bubbles a lovely shade of green.

Sometimes you have to remember what's important.  People, feelings, gratitude.  These are important.  Things - not so much.  Sometimes you have to slow down and remember.

My mom sent me an email she received from her cousin, Sherry.  Sherry's mom is my great aunt Lola.  I remember hearing my grandmother talk about them so very many times.  In my head, the name "Wes" is automatically followed by "Lola" because that's how grandma always referred to her brother and his wife.  

I don't remember the last time I saw Sherry, or her parents.  I know Sherry and her dad came to my grandmother's funeral.  

So, needless to say, I was surprised to see this email from Sherry:

"I have to share something with you. I write to my mom and when I do, I also enclose notes and comments I've received from others. This has included e-mails and notes from telephone conversations. I also forwarded all of the newsletters that I received at Christmas. Mom has enjoyed them all!

In a recent letter, I hope you and Lori don't mind, but I copied out her wonderful "El Camino" story and sent it with my letter. I had sent her your Christmas letter and so she knows what Nathan looks like. I also kept her appraised during the earthquake crisis and all that your daughter and her husband were going through.

From what I've heard, she cried when she read the letter and really, really enjoyed the story. She has shown it to EVERYONE who has visited. We have a lady named Coco who we've hired to check on mom several times each week. She also is there when mom's physical therapist is there so she can be mom's voice. She has also helped transport mom to a couple of doctor's appts. when no one in the family could make it. Well, Mom was trying to tell her something and she couldn't get it out; so finally she wrote out the word "Haiti". Then she got the letter out so Coco could read the story again. She asks everyone to read it out loud so she can also hear it again! You have to understand in addition to being aphasic, mom also cannot write. This is something we have been working with her on as well as her speech.

So--please let Lori know how far reaching her story has gone! We now all "know" just how much she loves El Caminos!  :o)"

My mom included these words with her forwarded note:

"I cannot begin to tell you what this means to me, to know that her mom cares about Nathan.  Especially to have her write “Haiti” when they have struggled to get her to write much of anything since her stroke.

Our little man has endless potential for doing good!"

Thank you, Great Aunt Lola, for the reminder that it's the little things that matter.  It's the way we touch each other's lives that matter more than most other things we encounter in this world.  And thanks for the reminder that we ALL have an endless potential for doing good!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

FOX 13's story

Part One

Part Two


 Thank you, Sandy.  You did a very nice job.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Todd's Yard Sale!

Saturday was the B98.7 Todd's Yard Sale at the E-Center!

Todd and Erin have been very good to us and they arranged for half of the "booth fee" to be donated to Hope!

We raised $1400 for Hope!

It was a busy, fun day. Here are a few pictures of our adventure:

Believe it or not, there's a little boy in the pile of toys there... that's my Nathan!  And to think I was originally worried about what we'd do to keep him occupied...

Todd can't believe this high-quality genuine particleboard computer desk didn't sell....  (shocker!)

Todd and Erin were just awesome!  Collin played hide-and-seek with Todd - and his mom said he is still runs around the car and says, "Where is he??"

Nathan was DONE by the end of the day!  It was fun, but EXHAUSTING!

Thursday, May 6, 2010


We get to see Collin and Tia quite regularly.  We've even had sleepovers with the whole family.

Now that we're in our new house, we're just over half a mile from "Tollin and Ti-Ti".  

The boys will go to the same school when they get older.  We go to church in the same building (but at different times)

I'm so happy these boys will be buddies as they grow up.

We love you, Tollin and Ti-Ti!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Updates and Stuff

For all the pictures on this blog, there isn't one of "the family".

Let's fix that, shall we?

We're visiting B98.7 tomorrow morning at 7:50 AM to talk about Haiti and HLAH with some of our other friends from the O.  If you're in the area and available, feel free to tune in.

Todd and Erin (the morning DJs on that station) are big supporters of Hope.  They have their annual "Todd's Yard Sale" this weekend at the E-Center and Hope is one of the charities that is being supported through their fund raising efforts there.

I ♥ them.  Thanks, Todd and Erin (and the Aitkens, who made them aware of all this in the first place!)

Come by on Saturday and see us!

Nathan has a fascination with the letter "W".  Actually, the sound of the name "W", I guess, is more appropriate.  He doesn't actually know what a "W" is (he is only 2, after all) but we've been singing the Alphabet Song with him (among other things)  He really likes the way that sounds though because I'll find him singing "Double-yoo.... double-YOO" to himself all the time.  


It's also awesome to see him play with his food.  That's a big change from the starving little Haitian we brought home a few months ago.  And when I say "play with his food", I mean "PLAY".  There were car tracks from the El Camino on the piece of cheese that he didn't want during dinner tonight.  


Yes, he still loves his El Camino.  I think it's adorable.


My dad has an enormous aquarium in his front room.  Nathan and I went to visit Grandma and Grandpa last night.  Nathan loved the fish.

Tonight, I was looking at a picture book with him.  I turned the page and there were some fish on the page.  He said, "Grandpa" then shook his head and said, "fish".


Have I mentioned he's adorable??

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Unsolicited Advice...

Dear Man in the Truck for Some Sort of Dry Wall Business With the Name "Anubis" in the Title,

We don't know each other but I wonder if we could have a little chat.

Apparently you REALLY like Ancient Egypt.  You probably saw that traveling Egyptian exhibit that came to town when we were kids and you were just as awed as the rest of us by the quality and quantity of stuff a dead guy can own.

I get it.  I do.  I like Ramses as much as the next guy.

(Either that or your name is actually Anubis, in which case, I think you should sue your parents for malpractice.)

But I have to wonder if the name of your business is actually affecting, well... your business.

Subconsciously, people have to wonder if they really want to give a guy with an apparent fascination with the Egyptian God of the Dead access to the space between their walls.  Seriously.  

Most of us have seen at least one episode of CSI.  Have you SEEN the things that can apparently happen??  (although those things are apparently far more likely in Las Vegas, Miami or New York).

If business isn't good, you might want to think about it.

I'm just saying....



Sunday, May 2, 2010

You know you need a water filtration system at your new house if...

...the Haitian in the household makes a face and refuses to drink the water from the tap.

Have you SEEN what passes for drinking water there??