My Layla Girl

My sweet, spunky Layla-girl is going to be 10 months old in 4 days!  Why oh why do these things go so quickly?  When Elias was a baby, we took weekly photos.  And for child numero two, I’ve managed to take them once a month.  If we ever have a third…poor baby. 😉  These photo shoots never picture perfect, and who cares right?  We’re not going for perfection, we’re going for memories!

Milestone photos

I feel ya baby girl.  I don’t always like having my picture taken either.

Milestone photo

But daddy calms her down.

Milestone photo

Maybe just crawl to him for a minute so he can snuggle you.

finally got it!

And then we’re good to go!  Love this sweet little bundle of joy!

Thankful

November is the month when we reflect and give thanks.  And this month I have been ever so thankful for our family!  We have gotten to see all of our siblings in the same month.  This hardly ever happens!  My baby brother (who is 34…) had a baby in early November.  Our new niece, Evaleigh, was born in Tucson!  So we were able to drive down and visit her in the hospital!

Isn’t it amazing how quickly you forget how tiny newborns are?  I mean, we had our own newborn just 9 1/2 months ago and I’ve already forgotten how little she was!

Evaleigh

We also had Thanksgiving with Nathan’s side of the family.  So. Many. Kids.  All of these cousins together reminds me of my childhood, running around with my gaggle of cousins.

Turkey.  Stuffing.  Cousins.  What more do you need really?

Fagerlie cousins

Fagerlie cousins

Since Billy (my brother) was still in Tucson with his little family and my parents and older brother flew out to meet Evaleigh, we had a second Thanksgiving with them.  More turkey.  More stuffing.  More cousins (well, only one cousin in this case).

I love how much Elias loves Evaleigh.  He was rubbing his face on her head during all of these photos.  I had trouble getting him to actually look at the camera.  I’m not sure Evaleigh loved it as much as he did :)

Tjernlund cousins

Birthday Party Round-Up

It’s official.  My baby is three.  And in true missionary-kid-on-the-go fashion, we had three birthday parties for him: one in Arizona, one in Michigan and one in Nabire!  Spoiled much?

First up: Arizona.  In AZ we had a combined birthday party for Elias and Wren, his cousin who was also turning three.  They had a Mickey and Minnie Mouse party.

AZ cupcakes

AZ presents

Happy Dance

AZ Mickey theme

And then we traveled to Michigan where he had a Cars themed birthday party:

Blowing out Candles

Clothespin drop

E with presents

MI Birthday

And finally, at home in Nabire we had a what-d0-we-have-around-the-house themed birthday party (I kinda lost my mojo on the third party–blame it on jet-lag):

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We are so blessed to have Elias in our lives!  He is kind-hearted, crazy-fun, a dancing fool, a chatterbox and a smart little cookie.  We love you, Elias!

 

 

Grandpa and Grandma Come to Nabire!

While the whole of America, or so it seems, is glued to their t.v.’s watching the Super Bowl (I honestly would not have even known that it was Super Bowl weekend if not for social media…don’t hate me), we are enjoying a visit from Nathan’s parents!!

They have travelled halfway around the world just to hug Elias.  I mean, I guess they want to see Nathan and I too, but let’s face it, their main motivation is Elias.  He is the cutest of the three of us, so I don’t really blame them.

It has been just over a year since we last saw them in person, so I wasn’t sure how Elias would react to seeing them again.  We do frequent Skype calls, so their faces are familiar, but I’m pretty sure Elias just believed them to be an interactive t.v. show or something.

He has had a whole laundry list of things to do with them: “Granpa swing”,”Granma play blocks”, “Granpa play Legos”. And so, I am SOO happy to see him warm up to them quickly and do all the things he’s been dreaming about doing with them.

Elias and Grandpa play Legos

This makes my heart happy.

Elias and Grandma blow bubbles

And I’m quite certain that it makes Grandpa and Grandpa’s hearts happy too.

Grandpa

Grandpa A

My Grandpa, Frank Anderson, passed away last week.  He was 91 years old, and, if you can believe it, was still living on his own, driving and working.  On Friday, he got up, ate breakfast, got dressed and drove to church where he did finances.  I’m sure he didn’t expect to die that day, but what a way to go: faithfully serving God at the church he had attended for over 60 years!

Grandpa was amazingly kind and gentle.  I looked up to him.  When I think back over my time with Grandpa, a few memories stick out to me….

One summer, my mom was teaching a class and so Grandpa would pick up my brothers and me once a week to babysit while mom was teaching.  Grandpa, though, was no ordinary babysitter.  We didn’t just play in the yard or watch cartoons, Grandpa took us on adventures.  One week we went to Shireland (an amusement park of sorts that featured Shire horses) and once to Kiddieland (a more traditional amusement park).  There were also local festivals where he would buy us funnel cakes, and a waterpark or two.  I always looked forward to having Grandpa as our babysitter.

Grandpa was a class act and always a gentleman.  So, in turn, he expected me to act like a proper young lady.  One evening, Grandma and Grandpa were at our house for dinner.  I was running around screaming and chasing my brother.  And I distinctly remember thinking, “I am such a cool and fun girl!  Look at me acting crazy! (because that’s what cool, fun girls do)”  And so I asked Grandpa, “don’t you just love me????”  He very calmly looked at me and said, “not when you’re acting like this, young lady.”  I don’t think any other words could have straightened me up more quickly.

On my wedding day, Grandpa hugged me so tight, like he always did, kissed my cheek and whispered “I love you” into my ear.  He then hugged Nathan tight and handed him a jewelry box that contained a pair of airplane cufflinks. Grandpa was the kind of man who owned cufflinks.  And Grandpa knew that a fellow pilot needed airplane cufflinks on his wedding day so, he generously lent a pair of his own for Nathan to wear.  At the end of the day, as a surprise to us, Grandpa decided that Nathan could keep the cufflinks.  I think it was his way of welcoming Nathan into the family.

I will greatly miss my Grandpa.  My life has been better for having him in it.  I am so grateful to know that he is not only reunited with my Grandma, but that they are worshipping Jesus together once again.

Our Week

Our week as been happy and sad and crazy and joyful and full of snot (how does so much snot fit in one tiny little nose?)

Christmas.  Christmas was wonderful.  We were able to watch our nieces and nephew open presents live and in-person for the first time in 5 years.  And Elias.  Man is he awesome.  He totally doesn’t get Christmas yet, but he liked ripping wrapping paper and crawling after his cousins.  Family was a great invention.

Grandma.  Nathan’s grandma passed away on December 27th after a year long fight with cancer.  We are so grateful that she was able to meet Elias.  She will be missed, but I’m sure she’s having quite a rockin’ party in Heaven!

Snot.  Illness has hit our household.  Terri (my mother-in-law), Elias and I have all been sick for several days.  Fevers, coughes and snotty noses mean lots of mommy-Elias cuddle time, plus a lot of daddy-Elias play time (while mommy rests).

Audrey.  Our sweet little niece Audrey was born on December 28 to Nathan’ brother, Ben and his wife, Amanda.  We cannot wait to squeeze that precious little girl (we’ve stayed away so far because of the aforementioned illness).

Visas.  Our visas are in!  Can I get a hallelujah?  The next order of business then is to 1)get healthy again; 2) squeeze Audrey!; 3) attend Grandma’s memorial service; 4) attend a family wedding; 5) pack, pack, pack, pack, pack; 6) lug ourselves + 16 pieces of luggage (not including carry-ons…we’re not known for our light packing) to the airport; 7) survive 40+ hours on an airplane with a 10 month old; 8) live happily-ever-after in a tropical paradise

Phew, that was just this last week.  Life’s not slowing down anytime soon (but we’re not know for that either).

Because I’m in a sentimental kind of mood, look how tiny my baby boy was…what happened?  He’s like a giant now, or at least he feels like one when I tote him around on my hip all day.

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[Officially] Elias Tate Fagerlie

From here on out, August 15 will be a special day in our family, because on this day (that’s today y’all) we finalized our adoption!

We already knew that Elias was ours, but know the government knows it too :)  The whole court proceeding was quick and formal.  We signed a bunch of stuff and agreed that we would care for Elias.

Waiting for everything to start with Grandpa and Grandma and Grandma and Grandpa.

Entertaining the troops, still waiting for things to start.

Signing to make it official!

And that’s all she wrote!  No going back now…you’re stuck with us little man.  All said and done, this adoption process took 13 months from initial application to finalization.  Pretty amazing if you ask me!

SOOO…what does all of this mean?  Well, Elias is officially a Fagerlie.  Which means we can (and already have) requested a new birth certificate for him with us listed as his parents.  And once we get that, he can get his social security number and passport.  And once we get that, we will get him a visa.  And once we get that, we can return home to Indonesia!!  

If, and that’s a big if, all of that goes smoothly and efficiently, we could possibly be heading back to Indonesia in October.  We are SO excited!  Hold on tight Indonesia, there is one super-cute cutie coming your way!

90 Years

Today, July 2, 2013, is my Grandpa’s 90th birthday.

Grandpa is a kind, loving, soft-spoken, funny, caring and genuine man of God.  I’m am so proud to call him my Grandfather!

Grandpa during WWII.  Wasn’t he so handsome??  I think he is about 22 or 23 in this picture.

Grandpa meeting Elias, his very FIRST great-grandchild, last Sunday!

I am so very grateful for my wonderful Grandpa!  Happy Birthday!!

 

 

Photo-Op

We are visiting Phoenix right now, enjoying the heat for awhile.  (Elias may as well get used to it now!)

Last weekend, we had the rare opportunity of getting all ELEVEN of Nathan’s Grandma’s great-grandchildren together.  Eleven, ages 6 and under.  Now, getting all of them in a picture together, smiling and looking at the camera at the same time is just IMPOSSIBLE.  But we did our best…

Setting up…

Elias is crying…Grandma is trying to soothe him and therefore not looking…Plus only about 4 of the kids are looking.

No flash…sigh.

ESCAPE! (and another one is missing completely)

Annnndddd…that’s as good as it gets.

Any of you geniuses out there have hints on how to get this many kids to sit still and smile for a picture??  Because I haven’t a clue.