Sunday, December 30, 2012

Lauren's Baptism - with pictures too!

At times I'm hesitant to post about our doings, only because I know so many of you are still waiting and I can recall how very difficult that wait is, especially around the holidays. I also recall a friend Nikki posting after they returned with their daughter, and that gave me a bunch of hope to see that yep, this does eventually happen.  So below is a post of life today with Lauren and the Blunt family..... I pray this post brightens your day and gives you hope too..... that one day, you will be with your children... those entrusted to you by God to raise and teach and love.  I pray that day is very, very soon for you.  Meanwhile, hugs to each of you in the waiting.

December 30, 2012- Lauren is baptized.
Our church believes in infant baptism and our Pastor Chris also felt that we could have Lauren baptized under this belief even though she is already three years old.  So today, she was baptized.  She did remarkable in front of the church while we stood and received a prayer on adoption and then also the liturgy and reciting of the a family and then also as a church family. 

She ruffled Joshua's hair most of the time, it was so sweet....this must give her great comfort.  (I think he secretly likes it too....although the pics might not appear so).  When it was time for the sprinkling of water over her head, she wasn't crazy about it and then crawled tighter to Brad's neck.  Pastor Chris took her to present to the congregation for a brief moment, and she was starting to she reached for Brad.  He took her - and we laid hands over her to pray.  She then wanted me to hold if to say, "daddy, under your care you let me get water on my head"..... "so I think I want mommy now". 

She was so sweet and then after church didn't want to be near Pastor Chris and even started to cry again.  We all hugged on our Pastor, saying... "he's a good guy".... then later in the fellowship area, when Pastor Chris sat down on a chair and we were talking, Lauren went up to him and laid her head on his lap/belly and wrapped her arms around him as if to say, "ok, I forgive you.... I like you again".... it was so cute.  One thing that I've learned from this tiny little 3 year old is not to hold a grudge.  It's amazing; she is the most forgiving person I know!!  When Joshua does stuff to her that makes her mad, or bothers her, etc.... she gets on him with her ranting and raving Marathi and then a few minutes later she looks for him to give him a great big hug, ruffle his hair, or kiss his cheek, hug his neck.  She is teaching us all grace at a whole new level.

We wrapped our time up at church with a few family pictures, etc... Nana was there too!!  Yea!  And then the children's pastor, Mrs. Brenda came upstairs and we got a picture of her too.  She also held Lauren tight and poured love into her.  We are very blessed to have Mrs. Brenda.  Enjoy the pictures of our blessed day.  We are once again reminded that God is our Father and without him in our lives we would be lost.  We see such amazing work of the Father in Lauren's life as she continues to grow in her forever family.  I pray we continue to hold her up in prayer and that her precious life continues to be a reflection of God's grace, love, and provision. 

She's thinking.....not sure what all this is about..........

When in doubt with surroundings, ruffle "bye-ah's" hair .... it's so soft and floppy.

We love Pastor Chris......

 More rubbing of his head.......

Great, I could use a drink of water about right now.....

Wait....what's he doing???

I am out of here the first chance I get.....

Praying and laying on of hands......mommy has my hand... it's all ok......

Yikes...what is he doing with me???

I think I'll stick with mommy for a bit.....

 Nana was there too......

We love Mrs. Brenda..........

and she loves us right back too.........

Friday, December 21, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012

If you recall our last year Christmas card had our family's tennis shoes, minus one with a waiting empty pair.  Well this year, those shoes are filled..... and our family is complete!! Here is this year's card and Christmas greeting.  Much love to all those PAPs and adoptive families.... hang in there... God is good through the entire process. :) God speed in 2013. 

The Blunt’s Family Christmas Letter for 2012

As 2012 flew by, this year has been a year of family adjustments and intense growth.

Lauren Anjali Blunt!

After 2 years and 3 ½ months we finally were able to bring our daughter home from India. We thank each of you for your faithful prayers for our little girl. Lauren Anjali Blunt arrived in the U.S. on September 14, 2012, which just happened to be her 3rd birthday! Our trip to India was a trip of a lifetime and God’s presence and faithfulness was abounding; read more on our blog of daily journal writings in September 2012.

What started as a shy, quiet, unsure little girl has turned into a little firecracker, full of laughter, love and kindness….well most of the time. In many ways she is a typical 3 year old, wanting her food immediately when hungry and going through the pains of learning to share or not touch things that are either dangerous or valued possessions of her brother’s. No doubt about it, she has brought great joy to our family, along with a few challenges, but God is faithful and bigger than any issue we may experience. Lauren loves dogs, especially Nana’s dog Riley, she loves to chase him and fondly refers to him as “bi-ee”, she is very slowly learning the English language, with favorite words like, “shock-o-lot” AKA chocolate and “no!”, along with “go, go, go” when cheering for our Kentucky Wildcat Basketball team. She also absolutely LOVES Joshua and he’s growing to feel the same for her each day. She really is an amazing little girl.


Joshua grew up this year in so many ways. We spent spring break in Hilton Head and he enjoyed building things in the sand and hanging out with his friend Trey. Over the 4th of July weekend, he finally decided it was time to ditch the training wheels from his bike and of course when he did he got to experience the true joy of riding a bike… even though his knees were nearly in his chest because the bike was so small. :) Joshua also spent time over the summer at Grandma Blunt’s house, without his mommy and daddy! This was quite amazing and Brad and I both had to learn how to connect in new ways without Joshua for over a week! We both missed him terribly but enjoyed some couple time all the while. Joshua on the other hand was totally and utterly in LOVE with being at his Grandma’s and followed all the rules and remained a good house guest while away from home.

Joshua had a great 7th birthday in October in picking out his very own first “big kid” bike and rides it with great joy; we’ve been blessed with a beautiful fall, so we spent quite a bit of time outdoors and he on his bike. Joshua continues to LOVE soccer and Kentucky Wildcat Basketball. :) Joshua is thriving at school and church, as he’s learning to read and growing in his faith. He broke out in spontaneous prayer for Lauren during one of our bedtime routines reciting the Lord’s prayer – which surprised and warmed our heart! He is also forming strong connections at church through time with his small group. This has been a blessing to our family as he has worked through adjustments dealing with having a new little sister. Joshua has had “water” thrown on him during this transition and like the amazing little boy he is, has adapted very well….well with a few exceptions of some typical sibling stuff :)…. This little boy is certainly growing and stretching socially. Can you tell we are very proud of him?


Brad remains a contractor for the state and truly enjoys his job. He continues to thrive in a men’s small group and loves growing in Bible study and time with the Lord. Brad had a wonderful time in India, check out the story of his most amazing adventure riding in a rickshaw :) (posted under the October folder of our blog as India journal writings Sept 10, 2012 and Sept 11, 2012) … God is so faithful.

Brad has been amazing with Lauren, being patient with her during the early days when she was “afraid of men” to recently being one of the most favored people in Lauren’s world. She LOVES her play time with daddy…. He is always good for a swing in the backyard, a shoulder or horsey ride, game of Beyblades, or bouncing on the therapy ball. Brad is a great playmate and friend, and I think he secretly will tell you the most favorite part of his day is when he gets home from work and Lauren runs to him with joy and excitement looking for her daddy time of swinging, bouncing, and tickle attacks. “Daddy’s little girl” is an understatement. Of course jealousy is a new emotion for our family, so Brad remains faithful to carve out time for him and Joshua too. Their most favorite pastime over the summer is Holiday World, as they “endure” a full day of water slides, so that is certain to be in store for 2013.


Honestly Renae has had a year of “out of sorts”. The waiting and anticipation of Lauren coming home this year has been challenging, but Renae continued to stay connected with other adoptive families through her blog and continues to serve as support to friends across the country currently in the adoption process. Renae and Brad soaked in being a family of three with Joshua for most of the year, while waiting with full excitement when the call to travel to India came in.

Now with Lauren home, expectations have been thrown out the door and any resemblance of control is clearly gone. :) God is certainly chuckling joyfully waiting and watching for these growth opportunities. Initially Renae stayed home with Lauren, but eventually returned back to work on a part-time basis while Lauren attends Lexington Hearing and Speech preschool. Lauren has transitioned very well to this school and loves it, which brings great relief to our family. Renae works hard at balancing a family / work schedule that involves also running kids to school, events, doctor’s appointments and Lauren to weekly physical therapy. Renae continues to adapt to the new normal of being a mom to two children instead of one, and also has carved out “date night” with Joshua to ensure he’s not left behind in the changing family dynamics. The new family phrase is, “this is a marathon, not a sprint” which in the right reflection allows space for God to work in our lives in ways we couldn’t have even imagined.

As we look back over the year, we once again stand in awe of our Lord’s love, comfort, and provision.

Much love to you for a blessed 2013 ~ The Blunts

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Quick Katie update -- Our Lord is still in the miracle business!!!

Just a quick note on Katie, the daughter of a family in our adoption support group.  Katie was struck by a car while at college and has a brain injury....well, I'd say bleeding and swelling, but it seems as they continue to test her and perform MRIs, they keep getting good news.  Katie has no DAI and no neck tendon injury - this is a miracle!!  They have taken her off sedation to get her to wake up -- and removed her neck brace to make her more comfortable.  She has remained calm as her mom and dad pray over her and sing to her, previously she would be combative when the sedation was turned down (her dad says she's a fiesty one)...but today she was calm.... such power in prayer.  Furthermore, the expectation of her not waking for two months has now turned into them trying to wake her today as they took her off sedation to see how it goes..... well, she opened her eyes a short bit - barely open and even moved her eyes! It seemed from her dad's update that even the medical professionals were surprised. Her mom and dad continue to be by her side as well as others and amazing friends from her college hold prayer vigils and take turns staying over night..... the power of the Body of Christ is intervening in mighty ways for this young woman and it seems that He is certainly still in the miracle business.... please continue to pray!! Please also pray for family on both sides as this must be taking a toll on even those at home caring for other younger family members. Keep praying!!!

At times like this I have to wonder....... who in their midst will certainly accept Christ by watching this amazing Christian family hold up their daughter with hope and courage and faith???  Who is our Lord calling right now to the Body of Christ, a particular nurse, a doctor, a college student, someone in the cafateria, or maybe housekeeping?  There is always a reason for times like this ... so you just have to wonder, don't ya?

Faithful prayer warriors -- continue to pray.... also, there is a Jeremy that had the same thing happen to him there at the hospital also.... he doesn't have the same level of support -- add him to your prayers, perhaps there is life changing events in his family's midst. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Today at Physcial Therapy

We had a great day today at PT.  Joshua woke in the middle of the night last night saying he didn't feel well and thought he had to throw up.  He never did get sick and went back to sleep.  So this morning I wasn't surprised to hear him say he again thought he had to throw up.  (Of course this was after I mentioned that Lauren was staying home with me today because it's PT Day and also that I had to go to work for a Christmas Cookie exchange.) So Joshua stayed home from school today.  He still hasn't got sick and continues to give me his "sick rating" -- this morning he started at 30, at noon he was at 55 before he ate, then he said he went back to 50 after eating :) so who knows..... anyway.... so he got to go to PT with Lauren and also to my office this morning. 

He was such a great help at PT; Lauren would do literally anything the therapist asked because of course Joshua did it first. But during this visit we got to see little miss doing all her skills that we've been working so hard on:
  • Balance beam
  • Jump with both feet
  • Swing
  • Trampoline
  • Scooter Board
  • Belly time playing Cootie Bug
  • Bean Bag toss
  • Wagon ride and also wagon pull (she and Joshua took turns and she actually pulled him around too!)
  • Balance on beam while hitting balloon in the air
  • Fine motor puzzle / coupled with balancing exercise
  • We did some tall knee playing, all fours, and belly time
  • She continues to get up with one foot then another off of her kneel time - which is great!
And at the end when she didn't want to leave she headed for the Mr. Potato Head......

Today she was all about it!  But we cold also see how far she really has come.  While on wagon ride, we were singing the ABCs.... I have to take a video and figure out how to post on here.... it is soooo cute.  It goes something like this, "AB, AB, AB, A........ AB, AB, AB, A"  ..... too funny :)  I'm on a waiting list for an afternoon appointment time, so Joshua could come each week.... we both think this would be beneficial, but meanwhile, we continue to go to PT on our own and she also still wears her feet braces every day.  She is gaining such strength!  One of our friend's little girl said recently, "man Lauren is getting some abs!" - of course I don't believe it's that noticeable - but she sure is getting stronger.  With strength also comes confidence and that is really fun to watch as she tries new things and cheers herself on :)

Some pics from an earlier visit :)

On another note - I've had such a heavy heart in recent days.  A family from our adoption support group - it's a blended family with grown kids and now foster kids in the family too.  The dad's college-age daughter was hit by a car while at school and has a severe brain injury along with many other body injuries.  My heart is just breaking because they say she may not wake up for two months - and she will likely be in an inpatient rehab therapy hospital for 2 years.... and that is assuming other surprises don't come up along the way.  She's in PA and her dad has been by her side day and night.  Please pray for Katie.... I am really praying for a Christmas miracle! It is so very hard to imagine such a tragedy in ones family ...... it takes my breath away just thinking about it.  And I'm reminded that our time on earth is like a grain of sand on the beach of eternity and while on earth we are not promised a pain free life (although I cry out to the Lord, make it so)....losing a child or even having such a tragedy...experiencing such pain and terror...... I just can't imagine and I don't like it one bit....makes me want all my family to go to heaven at the SAME time! People all over the US are praying for Katie - and even around the globe....won't you join us?  I sooooo want a miracle..... Lord Jesus, show your healing power and we give you ALL the glory!! 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Certificate of Citizenship and some updated pics

So excited - we got Lauren's Certificate of Citizenship this week from US Immigration. Her sweet little passport photo attached is a reminder of how far we've come!  (Physically and emotionally).  Her look of fear in that photo has faded to laughs and giggles and her hair is growing like crazy making her a curly headed beauty :)
Lauren and Joshua continue to bond and it's a joy to watch.  See pics below of Lauren moving her plate to Joshua's side of the dinner table to "join him", feed him, and mess a bit with his hair.  I think she LOVES ruffling his hair - it's so soft to feel and I guess she sees me touching his head often ..... she's a great little mother to him... it is downright hilarious.  Brad and I both say we can't wait until she speaks more english, because she is going to mother Joshua like crazy.  Recently when I was trying to get Joshua to wake up and get ready for school (with no success), she came up to him and clapped her hands three times and rambled off a long string of Marathi - it was adorable....we cracked up.  Our little obedient, determined, rule follower is too cute.... wonder if she will always be this way???

It starts out simple - just a seat change - and she brings her plate too. Can I sit on your lap bye-ah?

Then it turns into a "can I get behind you and hug your neck?"

Then...."how about it I feed you??"

"Oh bye-ah, your hair is so silky soft- let me ruffle it up a bit"

True brotherly / sister love. (of course I wouldn't take a picture of the wrestling and annoying each other scenes, now would I?)

Here is also a recent picture at our church Christmas pagent.  Lauren was a sheep and Joshua was a shepherd. She had the ears on for about a second :)  No big deal .... who needs silly sheep ears anyway when you are naturally this cute?!!  Besides, Bye-ah's shepherd head piece is falling off too, see below..... we march to our own little drummer boy :)

Life is busy yall, what can I say.....tis the season.  Praying for several families in India right now picking up their children / or going to court.  What a special Christmas gift to have these children.....we are blessed.