Thursday, July 28, 2011

"And They Were Swimmin'!"

Lil Rosie in her tube!

Buddy the dog is obsessed with the ball! He even jumps in the water to get it!

"On your mark, get set...."


"Chicken fight!!!"

Love em'!

They all told me this pose was from High School Musical.,,,I don't get it, but maybe you will.

Play day with 'Romey', 'Dukey', 'Jon Jon' and 'Sammy'

The afternoon began by playing Wacky Wigglers on the floor with Shane.

And there in the right corner is the boy's beautiful mom, Bec! She is an excellent mom to these active, sweet, very polite boys!

Check out Jon Jon's gorgeous eyes!!! Blue as the crystal sea! Like his Uncle Jim's!
Precious Sammie and Ellie

This is 'Ducula'- Luke~ what an excellent vocabulary at only two years old!

Roman is making a sword!

Cooling off with a snowman on a hot summer day!

Lukey was glad Shane cleaned his bedroom and gave him some toys from under his bed!
What a goof!

Packing up and ready to head home!

Great buddies! Roman said that Sophie has the most beautiful face he's ever seen! ....Next to yours, sweet Romey!

Garden Tomatos and Nightime Chatter

First harvest from our garden!

Sophie's favorite time is bed time and most nights she starts out~

"Can we talk??"

The following is a peek into our conversations: (Individual conversations are marked by different colored font.)

Sophie~ "When we're in heaven, does Jesus make us a new house and do we get our own room or do we share it with Jesus?

Mom~ "Well, I'm not sure." But I know it will be the best house for us because Jesus made it!" 

Sophie~ "Will Jesus watch us sleep?"

Mom~ "Well, I'm not sure. ( See a pattern here? Ha!) We may not need to sleep."

Sophie~ "That's weird.....(new topic) What can I take to heaven? 

Mom~ "Nothing, God will give you everything you need there."

Sophie~ "Can I take my Barbie's?"

Mom~ " No, you can't take anything with you, but if God thinks you need Barbie's, they'll be there! 

Sophie~ "I'm taking this with me  (pulling out her brother's laser pointer from under the covers) and I'm going to stick it in my mouth and sneak into heaven......(new topic).....Who takes us to heaven?

Mom~ "Well, I'm not sure...but I know that your body stays here." ( I DO KNOW that for sure!)

Sophie~ "Why does your body stay here and only your soul go to heaven?"

Mom~ " ...Cuz God said so!" ( Good grief! LOL) Okay, any last questions?"

Sophie~ "Yea, just one....why didn't God die on the cross....why did it have to be Jesus?" 

Mom~ "Because God is the Father and Jesus is the Son...we'll talk more about that another night." 

Prayers, and routine exit elongated good-byes~ "Night!... Love you! ....Special!" ( blowing kisses, catching kisses, holding kisses to our hearts, sign language "I love you."...okay, I can still multi task at bed time...thank you, Lord.)

(From my reading in The Joy of Fearing God, by Jerry Bridges to answer why Jesus died instead of God:)

"It was the Father who sent the Son. We must not overlook the love of God the Son, however.  John said, " This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us" ( 1John 3:16) Though the Father sent the  Son, the Son came willingly, voluntarily. though He is indeed God, the second person of the Trinity, He took upon Himself our nature and suffered in our place on the cross because of His love for us."

Just recently, as we snuggled while watching a movie, she kissed me, and said~ " I love you mom." 

I kissed her back and she gently whispered, " I'll keep your kiss forever in my heart. I'm so glad I'm your daughter." 

I have always said to her, " I'm so glad I'm your mommy and this was the first time she echoed the sentiment!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Forty-six Birthday Kisses

Tuesday was my 46th birthday.

After her shower, I asked Sophie if we could put a big bow in her hair?

"Of course!" she said, "You can do whatever you want; it's your birthday. If you wanted to kiss me all day, you could!"

I said, "Well, I wished I would have known that this morning, we'd have spent the day in the rocking chair just kissing!"

"Mom!" she said, "We can start now!" 

So off we the rocking chair for forty-six birthday kisses!

Man, I love that little girl!

Handpicked flowers from our garden for my b-day

Birthday cards and flowers

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

SEEing the world in a new way

The Bentzel's just got back from vacationing in Chincoteague w/ Todd's family last week. 

There were many firsts for lil' Rosie~ riding in a boat, baiting a hook, catching her first Croaker, playing in the ocean waves, boogie boarding, seeing a live shark caught on the beach, building a sand castle, eating lunch on the beach, riding on Grandpa's get the picture!

Every summer, I pick a new book to read as I sit on the beach.

This year, I chose~ Choosing to SEE~ Mary Beth Chapman's story of victory in Christ after losing her precious 5 year old, Maria Sue in a tragic accident. 

For the last three years, I've sat on the beach yearning to hold my sweet Sophie Rose~ for her to experience the salty ocean air, to snuggle w/ her after she comes out of the water, teeth chattering. 

It's been almost year since we traveled to China to adopt her, so the honeymoon is over and life is a new normal

I chose my book, determined to read it in it's entirety in 4 days. 

Todd and I will often challenge each other when we see each being selfish and not engaging w/ one of the kids. At the beach is where I'm usually challenged. I find myself pretty entitled, after a year of homeschooling three kids, (and organizing El's graduation this year)  to sit and just have "some time for myself." 

I opened up the pages of Choosing to SEE and immediately found myself lost in Mary Beth's world. 

We must be twins separated at birth!!!

I felt such a draw and kinship w/ her.

I read excerpts from her life that read like my own~ good girl growing up always wanting to do the right thing, rededicating my life to the Lord every so often, wanting to be a wife and mom living in a perfectly controlled (mine) environment, raising kids and living for God. 

I woke up the entire house at 1:00am on Thursday night~ laughing hysterically as I read the excerpts of rafting on the Nile River and putting out their house fire.

I won't spoil it for you, you simply MUSSSSST read it for yourself. 

I wondered if it was just me that thought it was funny b/c I'm so much like her,  but it really is... as I've read it while sitting w/ my g-friends over a glass of wine. 

All ladies will CACKLE!!!!

 I knew when I bought the book what it would entail, but what I didn't realize was the conviction I would receive as I read of her background, suffering, pain, gut wrenching heart ache and finally SEEing Christ in the middle of it all.

I read of God's sovereignty and realized again, but as if for the first time, that all of our days are numbers by God's own hand. 

I must not take any time for granted w/ our new daughter. 

We've been going to Chincoteague for 26 years and most years, I'm on the beach reading my books and going knee deep in the water while the rest of the fam is boogie boarding in the waves. 

I blame this on Todd's brother, who tortured/teased me, relentlessly, about the bottom dwelling crabs; I also saw all family members get stung by jelly fish and heard shark eating human stories...again from Todd's younger bro!(Love you, M!)

Hey, I trust God, but if I can control any piece of my life, it'll be this one, thank you very much! :D 

Our first beach day brought a strong rip tide; Todd, Ellie and Shane, who are very strong swimmers, said it would be too hard for them to  bring Sophie out to ride waves. The water was way too cold for me and Sophie was content to experience the newness of knee deep water on her own....I continued to reading.

I was angry when Todd mentioned my selfishness to me ("This is MY time!") and snapped at him after he kindly reminded me of all the time I waited for Sophie to get here and now I was reading! 

It was then that I was at the end of the book and read MB's words: (I'm paraphrasing since I gave my book to a friend to read.) 

"I wish I would have gotten in the water, even if it was cold.

Knife in my heart; pain in my chest.

Here is my sister in Christ continuing to reel from burying her 5 year old child and I have a  healthy, active, beautiful, darling 8 year old Asian Princess who would like her mommy to get in the ocean w/ her!

I spent holy time w/ my Lord, repenting for my selfishness.... and got into the water.....and made a zillion memories. 

Hope you enjoy our memorable vacation pics from 2011!

Sophie's Rock Face ( AKA Maria)

"And I will dance with Cinderella...."

My favorite!

Man, are they good looking!

Another favorite~

"Whoa, that's cold, Girlie!"

Closeth your moutheth!

She has so many heroes!

 Hey!!! No wonder Sophie's mouth was open!! Monkey see, monkey do!

Add caption
Our master piece is complete!

Annual Brandt Bear Photo

Love all her faces!