Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Jasper Speaks:
It was another good day with the girls. Reality Check was good tonight. BECKY AND STINKA ROCK! I've got this rash ...

Had a leader's meeting afterwards. Made it home just in time to read stories to Nicole before bed. She will be wiped in the morning. It killed me tonight at church when I was tellingg her goodbye. I told her that I had to stay for a meeting but Kendra would get her to bed. She looked up to me with those HUGE brown eyes and said, "but who will read me my Bible stories?" Kicked in the gut! So, I was glad to get home in time to read and pray with her! I will miss those moments I am sure.

Also, Kaylie and Lexie Sneed are just about the most FANTASTIC little girls (next to mine) on the planet!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

A Good Day

Jasper Speaks:

Went to work a lot tired this morning as Savanna was up most of the night. That means so were we. I actually fell asleep at my desk right after my last class. There have been a rash of fires on campus of late and the bathroom right across from my room was hit today. I feel special. No injuries or damage but man it is cold for all these fire drills.

I picked the girls up from daycare and we had a very good afternoon together. Nicole had a really good day at school! That is an answer to prayer. Fixed dinner and fed the baby. Nicole and I read a book together after we started Shrek 2. Then Kendra came home and it was matching pj pictures. The girls were very cute. If you would like to see a picture email me and I will send one out.

Nicole was very well behaved today. We still don't know how long they will be here as their mom has made even further good steps top getting them back. We will miss them so much.

Anyway, on a happier note, it does appear that I will be in attendance at Reality Check this week! I know you all cried through all of last week's service because you missed me!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Did Someone Mention A Saga

Jasper Speaks:

The girls are here until probably Monday (a week from today) at least. More to come ...

Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Saga May Draw Near An End

Jasper Speaks:

So, this time tomorrow we may well have an empty house. The girls may be returning to their biological mother tomorrow after a short court hearing. We are mixed. Some good feelings some bad. It was a little difficult holding and feeding Savanna tonight and lying her down for the last time. I will miss her if she goes. Nicole is a great kid too. This is the difficult part of fostering. These are the times I wish we could just have our own kid.
Jasper Speaks:

Great game last night. Had fun with Jessi, Victor, Betsy and the girls. God bless Jessi who took Nicole and let Kendra and I have some alone time in the afternoon.

Went to church without the wife and kids today because Savanna has a cold. So does Daddy Jasper! Who gave it to whom? Still a mystery!

Please continue to pray that the court date goes well tomorrow. It is at about 10AM. We want what God wants. We know what our will is but we want His will and the best situation for our girls!

Did I mention, Go Cards?
Jasper Speaks:

Stayed up too late watching quite possibly the best baseball game of my life! I wonder if I would feel this way if the bad guys had won. It was a classic that reminds me why I love the game.

On the other big thing in our lives note, our girls are most likely leaving us soon. The court case went well in favor of their mother taking them back. She is making some good changes and they wil tell us on Monday whether or not the girls will leave that day to go back. The social worker says even if it doesn't happen on MOnday, it will happen in a couple of weeks. The baby is congested and sick now as am I. Betsy and I will take them to a clinic for a checkup today. Please pray that all goes well and goes quickly. It is a free walk-in clinic so it could take forever!

On the other hand, if the baby is up to it we will take Nicole to Crown Candy Kitchen, only the best ice cream ON THE PLANET! I might have to slpurge and get a chocolate chocolate chip cone mysel. Might have to --- yeah that's it.

Thanks for your continued prayers.

Go Cards!
Jasper Speaks:

Everything is fine. The ER visit came because the daycare sent Nicole home with a high fever and no pediatrician would see her because we didn't have all the medicaid information yet. She is out of school for the rest of the week at least. She also has infentago and pink eye. GREAT! The pink eye is clearing nicely with her eyedrops.

Please pray for all of us today. This is the first court hearing this morning. Nicole will see her mother today. I am anticipating a very hard night tonight. Last night was good but our strength is very low. I am concerned because today is parent/teachers conferences and I won't be home until at least bedtime and that throws all of our schedules off. I am also concerned about how this will affect Nicole's need for security after the visit to the court. Please pray that all goes well and that our little girl is a trooper through all of this confusion!

Jasper Speaks:

More firsts. First ER visit. First trying to get the kid to take medicine.

This is so hard. Please pray that we will be able to do all that God has for us in this situation.

Jasper Speaks:

So, the first day at daycare seemed uneventful. Nicole was so tired she just kept putting her head down a lot. Last night she barely made it through her dinner and then went to bed with absolutely NO fighting. She was wasted.

My other kids (those I teach) were not so well behaved. As I was getting my own children all set in their school, theose children whom I teach were being awful. The sub report even said my honors class was the worst of all. So, they are going to hate Mr. Rains tomorrow after I get onto them.

I have previewed Victor's message for Reality Check tomorrow night and it looks wicked good. You should be making plans to be there!

Well, I am off to my room to spend some quiet time with God before my next class! Have a great day!

Jasper Speaks:

Right now I am in my office at church. What a wild weekend! I took today off fronm teaching school so I could help Kendra get the girls to their first day of daycare. Am I a bad daddy because I was thanking Jesus for the person who invented daycare as we drove away this morning? I can't begin to know what it is like for the girl's mother right now but I felt a very small piece of it today leaving the girls with people I don't know. I think I was much more confident about leaving Nicole than Savanna. Nicole, I have learned, will let you know when she doesn't like something or needs anything. Our baby can't do that so well. It is weird that I am glad to have a little reprieve but kind of miss them too.

Nicole got to talk to her mother last night. It helped and hurt a little. We still had issues with bed --- a lot of issues! But we are thankful that she stayed in her room ALL NIGHT! She slept on the floor and not her bed and I am pretty sure she only stayed there because I slept in the chair in the living room like a Night Security Guard and it intimidated her to stay. I had to have the mean daddy talk with her last night about how the living room was not an option because our apartment is small and if she sleeps there nothing else can really go on in the house. I was stern and today I feel a little bad but I reminded her that we love her very much and that now that we are getting into our routine, she has to start abiding by some structure rules. We will see how that all works out.

Church yesterday was interesting. Nicole tried to sit through the service. She kept saying, "Oh, I want this to be over. I want to LEAVE!" Then, as soon as the service ended and we were walking out she said, "I don't want to go yet!" I was confused. We had a great time at lunch. God bless the BK Playplace. God bless our friend Jessi having two beautiful girls (Kaylie and Lexie) who kept our little girl entertained.

New experiences this week are far too many in number to list. But I have changed a diaper and fed a baby. I have slept with a baby in my arms all night long. I have been called "Dad" for the first time (as odd as that is). I have sat through worship with kids of my own. I have done the girly movie marathon (we have learned to hide the movies so they are easier to limit). I have tried to sing a little girl back to sleep with hymns and choruses at 3:30 in the morning. I have an amazing ability to remember lyrics but under those circumstances I had to grab the hymnal that was on the floor next to me and look up "Because He Lives" because I was only mumbling the words. I was way too tired to remember at that time. There are a lot more firsts that have happened and a lot more to come. This is such an incredible ride. It's a roller coaster. One minute you are loving it all, the next you aren't sure you can survive.

As I was holding Savanna one night this week, I began to think about the spiritual parallels that are abounding around us right now. Just as Savanna needs us to provide for her every need, we need to rely on Christ. I am finding that I am completely overwhelmed with lack of knowledge of how to be a parent. I need to rely on God for strength as regularly (and even more so) as Savanna's feedings. My constant prayer this weekend has been that I can be the type of father that my Heavenly Father is to me. That's not always easy.

I would like to say that there is more going on right now but I am filled to overflowing in kid land. Sadly, it seems I have turned into one of those people with only stories about my kids. I think I have a greater understanding of those people now. Peace out from the happy land of children in daycare and finally adult conversations!

Jasper Speaks:

Wow. It is still all so overwhelming! Day three of parenting has had its rewarding and tiring moments. It was sweet to see our Nicole at Sara's partyplaying with Emma. She has been so reluctant to make friends and she and Emma had an instant bond. It gives me hope that she will do well at preschool on Monday. We are waiting to take her to Sunday School for another week. We will all sit in big church together tomorrow. Worshipping as a family.

Our nightly bed struggles continue. Tonight, I plan to pull the switch-a-roo. I am giving her another twenty minutes or so and then when I know she is sound asleep, I am going to try and move her from the love seat to her bed. She has promised that she will sleep there tomorrow night without a fight. Uh, yeah, sure, whatever kid. I wasn't born this morning. I have kids promise past due homework everyday. I am so not new to this kind of game! Please pray that it will go well anyway.

Nicole and I spent forty-five minutes at the park together. There were some wonderful moments there. There were also some. "Oh, my goodness this is so boring I want to put my eyes out moments". Two words for next time --- play date. We both needed more stimulating company after awhile.

Oddly, Nicole called me Dad several times today. Still don't know what to make of that.

Baby Savanna is wonderful. She was fussy last night and slept for several hours in my arms in the good ole big green chair. That provided for some much needed Jasper/baby bonding. I now think she is close to the coolest thing ever! A note to you Parkwayians, she is going to be the CUTEST baby at church tomorrow. The hardest part is picking our what ADORABLE dress she will wear.

Well, please continue to pray for us. It is exhausting work. They never go away and leave you to your thoughts. Hmmmm ... We love it and value each moment. We are just not completly sure how it will work when our jobs start to interfere. God is in control. I tried to prepare for rain and it feels like it is pouring now!