Letter to my six-year-old girl

My dearest Ella girl,

You are six. Six. How do I have a six-year old already?

I treasure the way you are becoming more and more like Jesus, sweet girl.

I see it in the way you serve those around you. I saw it when, after a cranky ride home from small group when you said you were hungry, I snapped back: “I’m the one who is hungry! I haven’t eaten all day long. Quit your whining.” [Or something to that awful effect.] When we got home, you went into the kitchen all by yourself, dished up some leftovers, reheated them, and delivered them with a smile. (To a contrite and grateful mama.) Or the time a few weeks back when I got home from the dentist and went into the kitchen to get myself a snack. You asked what I was doing and I mentioned that I had missed lunch; I was getting a snack. I then headed went into my room to have a quiet time. About twenty minutes later, into my bedroom you came, plate in hand, with a sandwich. Two slices of bread (one heel; that I’d usually snub my nose at but not this time!), one piece of deli meat, and two hunks of cheese that you’d sliced by yourself. And a glass of water. (Which sort of resembled milk. I think it had a bit of both!) All because I hadn’t eaten lunch. Best sandwich I’d ever had, heel and all. And then you wrote up on the dry erase board: “Daddy i mayd a sanihc im iksiydid” [I made a sandwich. I’m excited.] Or- a few nights ago I sat down on the couch as daddy prepared to do your bedtime Bible reading nearby and sighed, “This living room never really got cleaned today.” Before I knew it, you had risen and were scurrying around the living room, cleaning up as daddy read. You seek to bless and serve, Ella. You see a need and you rise to do it. Cheerfully. May you continue to serve others in the same way Jesus did.

I see it in the way you love. You are so full of affection-- hugs and kisses and always, morning snuggles. You crawl into bed with me or onto my lap and are so cuddly in the mornings. I love that! Your arms and legs are getting so lanky nowadays, but I hope you’ll continue to be mama’s snuggly girl. (Although you did tell me the other day that you might not crawl into my lap when you’re 25!) You love so fully, dear Ella. May you continue to pour out your love for others in visible, expressive ways.

I see it in the way you obey your daddy and I. You are quick to obey. You truly want to honor us through your obedience. (And when you don’t, you have such a sweet spirit that you are immediately tearful and repentant.) May you continue to have an obedient spirit: with your daddy and I in the years to come, but most importantly, with God.

I see it in the way you can turn from a crabby or slothful spirit to the opposite, with a simple question of, “How would God want you to respond right now?” You want so much to do the right thing, and you are able to flip your attitude in order to do so. May you always be so pliable!

I see it in the way you give. You have such a generous spirit. The $10 bill: nearly all of your earthly savings, tucked lovingly into my stocking. My sweet Ella, I will always keep that $10 to remember your love for me and your generosity. I see it in your zeal to give money to Samaritan’s Purse or any other person in need. I see it in the way you talk: “Someday let’s go someplace where they don’t have mommy’s or daddy’s and we can give them food and money and help them.” May you always have such a generous spirit, my dear daughter. May you always be a cheerful giver, and desire to give ever so much more than you desire to receive.

I see it in your heart for adoption. You faithfully tell us all about your plans to adopt. (The most recent figures for your future family, I think, are ten girls: two from your tummy, the rest adopted. I do think you tossed a couple of boys in there, too. :) And you always speak of adopting at least one child from Guatemala, because that’s where your brother is from.) While I hope and pray that God will open your womb and let you experience the joys of pregnancy and breasfeeding, I also hope and pray that you will indeed adopt. May you continue to have a heart for the orphan, my sweet Ella.

I see it in your kindness. In the cards you make, in the thanks and praise you give over every meal I serve. (Even when it’s not exactly your favorite meal!) I see it in the way you love your brothers: choosing to be the peacemaker, choosing to share, or just seeking the one thing they love to play with at the time and delivering it to them. May you continue to grow in this quality of kindness, Ella Kate.

There are so many more, but these are the things that come to mind as I sit to write this year.

You are purely a delight, my Ella girl.

It is such a treat for me to watch you grow. It is my fervent prayer that you will continue to grow in the way of righteousness; that you will love God passionately and fully.

Hugs and kisses,


December notes


Someone nominated With Great Joy in the category of "Best Cyber-Buddy Blog" for the Homeschool Blog Awards.

I had to check the description of that category, and this is what I found: "A blogger that you haven't met, but you think you would enjoy meeting and hanging out with. She is a person that you would love to co-op with or live next door to."

Okay, the fact that someone read that description and then nominated this blog? Really. It is just about the nicest compliment I could get on this little blog.

I thank you. 

And the idea of meeting/hanging out with/living next door to any one of you?  How fun would that be??? 

* * *

Can you believe December is here already?  Goodness!   

We celebrated yesterday by making these.

And aside from the little mishap I got into with the interfacing, which resulted in me permanently attaching small semi-circles onto my ironing board, we enjoyed every minute of the project.  And I wanted a new ironing board anyway.  

As December 1st came upon us, so did the snow.  My favorite part about the snow, other than the way it looks as it covers the trees, is the quiet that settles with it.  When you step outside after or during a snowfall, it just seems still.  

I like that.  

Things around the blog are going to be still as well.  I plan to take a break here for the month of December, and maybe on into January, too.  I probably won't be around much to comment on your blogs, either, so I'll have a lot of catching up to do when I get back!  :)

If you think of it, will you join us in praying that we will get our foster license?  Our social worker's "it will take a couple of weeks" has turned into several weeks, with no communication from her.  

A few thoughts on this....  
1. God desires us to adopt; I know this.  
2. Satan does not want us to adopt.  He is looking to devour these kids in the foster care system.  He has them right where he wants them: abandoned, neglected, abused and without hope.  
3.  Prayer is effective!  
With these things in mind, I have resolved to be more prayerful for that one thing: that we would get our foster license.  [I'm praying we'll have it by Christmas.]  

Many blessings to each and every one of you (and your spouses and families) as you celebrate Jesus Christ this season!