7 years of wedded bliss!

Bliss may not be the exact right word, but anyway...Today is our 7th wedding anniversary and we are looking backward and forward at the same time. It's always a good reminder of where we have come from and always exciting to think of where we will be in another year. All in all, I have a pretty great guy, a super great guy.

If there is a day to celebrate your husband, then your anniversary is probably the day, so here goes:


It has been a great honor to be your wife these 7 years. You are not perfect, but you are perfect for me. I love you more and more all the time. I am thankful for your laugh, your encouragement, your hard work, your humility, your friendship. I am thankful that you are kind-hearted, quiet, strong, and hansome, so hansome...wink, wink. I am thankful that you chose me. I am thankful, even for your shortcomings, because it is in those that I have learned the most about myself and my God. You are my best friend and my favorite daddy. Thank you for being you and for loving me!

Your loving wife,


I wonder what God's going to do next!

It is finished!

They are officially Kashuba's! The adoption part is finished, but the parenting part will continue for the rest of our lives. I will never be able to fully explain what it felt like to walk out of that courtroom today and complete this crazy journey. From the first conversation I had with my friend Ashley over 4 years ago to going to court today...we had no idea what we were getting into. When I spoke with my friend Ashley 4 years ago, she and her husband were in the final stages of becoming licensed to get their kids. I remember thinking how amazing she was and how happy I was for her new family. Little did I know that just 4 years later I would be following in her foot steps. God planted a seed that day, a tiny speck of a seed and then he continued to water it, tend to it, pull out the weeds and see that it was grown into what is now our beautiful family. Ashley and her husband were there today at court. I thought that was fitting considering they were the ones who started it all!

I am reminded today of so many prayers...pouring my heart out to the Lord. I remember the first time I prayed for my kids. I did not know their names or ages or how many of them there would be, but I prayed for them right where they were and sobbed at the thought that they needed their momma and for some reason God knew it would be better for them to take the long route getting to us. I struggle to find the words to explain what I know to be true about God. Some things don't make sense...or at least I can't explain them. All I know is how I feel and what God has revealed to me. I do feel sad that I did not get to have my kids from day 1, but I know that God's amazing plan is being revealed all the time in my life and in the life of my kids. I am honored to know Him just a little. I am honored to be the mother of my 3 precious little ones. None of us our perfect, not one, and this world is a scary place, but our God is beautiful and just and holy and perfect. He takes risks. He does not fit in our minds or in any box. He is adventurous and life with Him is a wild ride...one that I am glad to be on.

Oh God, you are my God and I will ever praise you! We ask for your wisdom this day and every day after to be the kind of parents you want us to be. This is all in service to you. Help us to keep the faith.


Gathering my thoughts

The best part about Tuesday afternoons is nap time. The little ones and I come home, eat lunch, and then they both lay down for some needed rest after their big morning at church. When the kids go down, mommy gets to do whatever she wants for about an hour and a half, usually. I am trying to be disciplined to do more than just chores during nap time. There are plenty of chores that could take up my whole break if I let them. At least half of the time I try to devote to reading, writing, watching t.v., or just sitting quietly and staring---which is actually one of my very favorite things to do.

Today, I read some of my old blog posts and stared at the wall. I find that my thoughts get so overloaded in my brain these days because I do not have as much time to process as I used to have. It's like the only cure for an overloaded brain is sitting and staring for a while....just organizing and filing my thoughts away. If my brain was a desk it would be completely crazy with piles all over and no filing system...no need for jokes about my actual desk right now---that's just too easy.

My physical body has caught up to all of the extra work that comes with having 3 kids. Now, I am just waiting for my brain to catch up.


No personal space.

I have never really considered myself a "private" person, but having three kids under the age of 5 has made me crave privacy like I crave Sunkist...many of you know of my addiction to the orange goodness that is Sunkist.

Wow. My kids run what they call a man-on-man defense, except I would probably describe them as being on offense. Michael and I are the ones on defense for sure. Also, they travel in a pack. If one of them has a mind to follow me around, then all of them do...do you know what I mean...do you really understand the depths of this? And of course one of them always has a mind to follow me around.

Several years ago a good friend was telling me about her daughter following her around all day long and she happened to mention that she followed her in the bathroom. I, in my lack of experience, exclaimed, "What about when you go number 2?". She quickly retorted, "Honey, I could go number 13 and she would be there!". Words fail me!

I used to get so sick of hearing myself talk when I taught at the preschool. Now that reality has followed me home...oh to sit in silence and not have to speak.

On a more serious note, we are doing very well! We had an extremely eventful journey to Canada for Christmas and back...4 airplanes, 2 canceled flights, some other minor delays, and a 6 hour drive did the trick. The kids had a ball in the snow, and boy did it snow. It was such a blessing for the kids to get to know those crazy Kashuba's. We had such a Merry Christmas!

We are getting back in the groove of being home and back in school. Michael and I feel like we have conquered the world after surviving all the travel with our sense of humor still in tact.

So much more good to come! Every day we bond more as a family. I remember the first month, every now and then I would have one of those moments where I could see walls falling down and true joy happening, and now they happen every day. It is so easy to lose track of the most important things because we are so busy taking care of the kids. I pray every day to have the focus I need to love well. I pray this for you and your family as well.

Happy New Year! Blessings in 2009!

amanda, michael, and the kids

p.s. Pray for a buyer for our house!

This one is for you Tracey! Thanks for holding me accountable to writing. You are probably the only one still reading.