Sunday, August 29, 2010

What it's all about...

To many of you what I'm about to say will have little to no impact, but to YOU..who know these names will stand in awe at how awesome our God truly is.

On Friday I got to speak with Gedese in Ethiopia. Again with her limited English and my very limited Amharic, I tried to explain that I would be there in Ethiopia on November 1st. It's so hard to believe it's been 18 months since I kissed her and Christiana goodbye and sent them on a plane to ET. I was trying to tell her I would be there for Christiana's second birthday and I was bringing a group with me who wanted to meet her. After all she is not only an Olympic athlete, but she was Because Every Mother Matters first mom AND my best friend! Gedese was excited to tell me that Christiana speaks three languages(Oromio, Amharic and English)..yeah she's not even 2! Then Christiana gets on the phone. The last time I saw her..she was 6 months old. I was there for her birth and poetically labeled at the hospital as her dad:) I felt her first kicks, was there when we heard her heartbeat, I spent sleepless nights waiting for her arrival. I never left Gedese's side. I was there when Christiana was ripped from Gedese's body lifeless, I was her advocate when the Dr's thought she had physical deformities and chromosomal abnormalities. I held Gedese and Christiana and prayed for a miracle when all around us was darkness. I fought for them, sold my possessions for them, loved them and then watched them leave. Many times since then I have promised Gedese and Christiana I would see them in Ethiopia and every time I have had to cancel. My body was spirit was willing,but my flesh was weak. So, when I talked to her on Friday and told them I was coming..her first words, "Please come, don't not come again." Funny thing is..once again I find myself at the mercy of my body. I have big medical tests this week, but have remained silent. Again my spirit is willing....THEN Christiana got on the phone...and she said(not yet 2), "Hello. I love you momma Steffany...Amasecanalo(thank you) for my life". Um..Yeah...Screw my body...I am counting down the days until I see them again!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

What's That I Hear?

Is Ethiopia calling your name?

Because Every Mother Matters is going to Ethiopia November 1-13th with doma on an epic adventure and we want YOU to come with us!

Why are we going?
To be changed, to be blessed, to be a blessing that can change the reality that 1-in-11 women die in E. Africa due to pregnancy related causes. doma is sending two different teams and you are NEEDED!
Do you have a medical background? Do you know someone who does? Then consider teaming with the medical team being lead by Amber Kauffman the medical director for doma.
Have you ever wanted to go to Africa? Do you have that tingling feeling in your gut as you read this, but wonder what YOU could do to help? Then come with us on the 2nd team. We will visit the fistula clinic in Addis, have a coffee ceremony with Because Every Mother Matters first momma, Gedese and her family, spend a few days in the village the Prenatal & Early Childhood Care Center will be built (thanks to ALL of your support and donations), you will get to know the people, their families, build relationships, work along side them. I even heard we may get to take a tour on the Nile River!
I can promise you 3 things...
1. You will be changed
2. You will be blessed
"wait for it.."
it will be

doma embraces and empowers vulnerable children and families around the world through prevention, intervention and long-term care.

Go to Ethiopia this Fall with doma!

The Challenge:
The average Ethiopian woman will give birth to over 6 children, and 1 in 11 women in East Africa will die of childbirth related causes. When a mother dies, children are orphaned; and there are 5 million orphans in Ethiopia. Doma digs to the root of the problem. Why are these homes grieving and broken? Why is it that they have no access to simple healthcare? Their days are spent in survival mode. In Ethiopia, growing healthy families means removing obstacles to peace and joy, and preventing that which leads to more orphaned children and vulnerable women.

The Project:
Doma will establish a Prenatal & Early Childhood Care Center in Bora, a village in the mountains of southern Ethiopia. At this center, the mothers and mothers-to-be in and around Bora will be trained in simple healthcare practices and have access to prenatal and postnatal care, as well as pediatric care for their children.

The Opportunity:
Dan Clark and Amber Kaufman from doma, and Steffany Boster from Because Every Mother Matters, are leading a Vision Trip to Ethiopia from November 1-13, 2010. On this trip, you will travel with pastors, moms, activists, medical professionals, and business persons who are passionate and share your interest in Africa, orphaned children, and vulnerable women. You will see real needs first hand and meet these needs in simple and immediate ways alongside of one of doma's medical teams. You will experience the first stages of the center doma is establishing. You will build relationships with Ethiopians and come away with life-long friends. You will have the opportunity to give to this and other projects, as well as come home inspired and informed to connect your families, churches, businesses, and communities to the adventure of generosity and compassion on behalf of orphaned children and vulnerable women.

The Details:
The team will travel from Monday, November 1st to Saturday, November 13th. The cost to cover all your needs while in Ethiopia is $1250 per person. This is a tax-deductible gift to doma, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. You will also need to purchase airfare in consultation with a doma staff person. Additional cash for souvenirs, tips, and snacks is recommended. If you are even considering this opportunity, please be sure that you have a valid and current US passport as soon as possible. Go to for more information.

If you are considering traveling to Ethiopia with doma in November, please contact Dan at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 614-648-3663 soon. Doma's experienced and professional team will guide you through the steps of preparing for your adventure of compassion in the beautiful country of Ethiopia. See you on the Continent!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Undeniable Grief...

It's so true that grief hits you in unpredictable waves. I am finding myself this Saturday night in tears...crying uncontrollably. I miss my sister. I feel so stupid. It has been 3 years since she died. I didn't even cry when I found out. No, I just sat there..knowing and justifying. I didn't even cry when I saw her body. Yes, I cried when I spoke at her funeral. I didn't cry when after a year her ashes were finally laid to rest. No, I find myself crying at the most inconvenient and unpredictable times. At the check out in the grocery store, driving down the road, on the way to an airport, a night like tonight...I cry during the every day stuff. It is in the mundane I think of her. It is this time of night that I would call her or she would be calling me (Saturday night) asking for a ride to church and me halfheartedly agreeing, but in the back of mind wishing she would just find her own way there...I cry in the store when I see El Pato sauce...oh, how many times did she call and ask for me to buy this for her...I cry just driving down the road. I think about all the times she needed a ride and I said, "No". I cry when I hear a woman was reminds me of sitting in the hospital holding her hand and not understanding why she kept choosing unhealthy relationships. Right now though, at this very moment...I am simply crying because I miss her so much and I need my big sister

It's Coming Together ! (Giveaway)

The Because Every mother Matters website is coming together and to celebrate I am having a giveaway!
What will you win? Your very own Tacky for Africa Headband! What do you need to do?
1. Visit the website. Go to the contact us tab and leave me a message.
2. Grab the button and blog about us. Help spread the word.
3. Buy a Tacky for Africa bracelet.

Leave me a comment on my blog and tell me what you did. If you do all 3-THEN YOU AUTOMATICALLY WIN A TACKY HEADBAND! If you do any of the above you will be entered to win one:)
And, like always...100% will be given to the mommas in E. Africa!

It is because of you that phase 1 of the maternal/child development is almost complete and that Because Every Mother Matters has 704 fans of Facebook. Thanks for your support and spreading the word

Friday, August 20, 2010

Wild Love...

I can't help but to think about how "wild" we become

to find love

and to feel loved..

we will even leave the love we know

to go on a grand adventure

to try to discover a deeper love

a wilder love

only to find out the love we desire was inside of us...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Family Update

I had my first born start high school today. Yeah, no words. Okay...I do have words. Really?! I am the parent of a high schooler? I don't want to make this about me, but really?! I don't think when you are younger you daydream about this age of life...It somehow seems so beyond your grasp. I was so busy with preschoolers for 15 years..I never thought this day would come. With 2 preschoolers still at home, this still seems pretty surreal. The blessing? My son is amazing. I really couldn't be more proud. He is less than 2 months from a driving permit, but decades beyond where I am in understanding the gospel. Today I also had my first born daughter enter 6th grade. This is the year of development(insert scream here). She is BEAUTIFUL. What I love the most about her is even though she is physically striking...she has no clue. She is sweet, shy, introspective, yet, strong. Oh and I know I haven't shared a lot about this..but I am not homeschooling right now. So, tomorrow my Lukas (nunu) starts kindergarten (public school), Faith will be in 4th grade(public school), Jace 9th grade(private school), McKayley 6th grade(private school) and the twins preschool a few mornings a week. Big adjustment ahead.

And Adam? Working 20+ hours a day. We miss him. Me? that's another story

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Blinded by EGO

Why is it that no matter how convicted I am to not make life, issues, challenges and successes about me..I seem to end up somewhere along the way losing sight and becoming blinded by my own ego? The last month or so I have failed more than I want to admit in this area. I have made everything about me all the while wearing a veil of false humility. The thing is... when you are in the middle of it all you can only see your warped point of view that seems so right and justified. You feel as if what you are doing, feeling, saying and believing is righteous and true. You can even call friends and family and they will validate how you feel. The thing is even after the validation, justification and feeling of righteousness....if you still feel unsettled, tense and perhaps even joyful that you are not alone in your thoughts...then in all realness somewhere along the way it became about you. OUCH. I know this. I believe this. I have been slapped upside down by the reality of this...yet, I continue to's not about me, BEMM, or any other cause, organization, or person. It is about something greater. It is about a LOVE that I don't fully understand, a LOVE that cannot be labeled or boxed, a LOVE that is not about just me, a LOVE that is freely given.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

In The Cracks

This post is not meant to be in any way a negative view of my life. It is in fact just my life...another day in my shoes.

Mon-I woke up from a 18 hour fast to get blood work done. My sitter(awesome Miss Kelly) arrived at 10am. I had just spent the previous night throwing up. I went to my appointment. Then checked on my parents house and came home around 12ish. I walked in the door and Miss Kelly informed me Diezel was sick and having a hard time breathing. I started an albuterol treatment. Half way through I realized it was not going so well and drove him to urgent care. After 2-3 hours, X-rays, more breathing treatments they were still unsure if he needed to be hospitalized. The y let me go home for a few hours. When I got home I found Jace in extreme pain. I promptly took him to our chiropractor. His neck was swollen and in knots. I then rushed home gave Diezel another treatment and took him back to urgent care. He was diagnosed with pneumonia complicated by asthma. I was instructed to watch him through the night. I came home only to remember the girls had tennis. We had a late dinner and Adam left to go work some more. I stayed up with Diezel until 4:30 am, then Adam came home and I went to sleep. I woke up at 8am to take Diezel back to the dr. I was still vomiting.
Instead of boring you with the rest of the week in detail...I will give you the highlights
6 more doctor visits.
1 toddler having steroid/albuterol rages all week
1 night of what was to be pure bliss(my man sent me to a B&B for rest on Thursday.
1 call from Miss Kelly on pure bliss night informing me toddler w/roid rage had to be subdued by my oldest and 1 kid having heat exhaustion/breathing attack that might require an ambulance.
Being sick all week
and then followed by Xia breaking her nose at the pool.

You know what though? In the cracks...I saw beauty. I watched siblings care for each other, I witnessed 3 little kids learn how to swim, I saw my 6 kids playing with each other in the pool completely oblivious that other kids there age were too busy being "cool". I was the recipient of my man's love trying to help me rest, I found out my family can handle a ton of garbage and still laugh.

I love my life. I love everything about it. The messy, sick, complicated....I love it all:)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

You Do Know...

The last post was not written by me...right?
I am NOT going to stop blogging..

I was really wanting feedback on Leah's post . No. Not for me or the need for affirmation, but your thoughts. The last post was written by my beautiful sister-in-law. It was her farewell that she posted on her blog I love this woman. I love her heart towards her family, but more importantly I love how she seeks Jesus with all she has. Did you read my/her last post? Is this true for you? Is blogging an idol? Do you crave comments and affirmation from strangers more than you humbly seek out God?

For me...honestly.....most days this is true. The first place I go in the morning is my gmail and coffee machine. I get a smile on my face every time someone comments on my blog. Somewhere along the line I forgot why I was blogging. At first it was to connect with other adoptive parents for support and encouragement and to chronicle our journey. Then I think I blogged to keep sane and connect with people at a deeper level. After a while I was committed to blogging as a way to journal my families lives since I pretty much stink at the whole baby book/scrapbooking thing. In the middle of all of my reasons, I was getting wonderful, heartwarming, inspiring and humbling messages from people all over the country telling me that something I posted changed them, helped them, uplift them, give them a much needed slap, etc....In the midst of all the reasons I started blogging(family, adoption, connection, journaling) God showed me the real reason He wanted me to blog. We are meant to reach out, to speak truthfully, openly and shine His light in us. This, my blog allows me to do that. I am not the small group kind of woman, or the club type of woman, I really don't like the phone and I am terrible in most public situations. I put my foot in my mouth more than I should or is acceptable. My blog has allowed me to show God's love, be vulnerable beyond my comfort, help people in some unexplainable way, speak truthfully about the trials of life and not only meet but find some of the best friends I have ever had. To me my blog is a gift not an idol, but that is me. Leah's post was profound and beautiful. I admire that she realized that her blog was not where the Lord wanted her. I shared her words because there was so much wisdom. To say we don't have idols would be a lie. Maybe your blog is not your idol, maybe like me your blog is a blessing.....but truth is truth and for me I want to seek out my idol and flee with all my heart just like Leah.

Why I stopped blogging

Wise words. Thought provoking words. Words spoken in truth.....

(from Leah)

Disclaimer: The below statements are not blanket statements directed toward all bloggers. They are what I have experienced periodically throughout my blogging lifetime & describe why I have stopped blogging. If I feel that the following would cease to occur, I will resume blogging again. Until then, here is why I have stopped.

1.) It is addicting. I spent way too much time in blogland. Time that should have been spent down on the floor playing with Annerson, getting ready for bed so I could have some time in the Word & in prayer, or serving my family via laundry, cleaning, cooking, etc. I could easily justify spending over an hour a day looking into the lives of other people, all the while missing out on my own life experiences. Claiming I didn't have time to do this or that. Really? Yet, you were on your computer last night from 9:15-11:00pm Leah? Hm.

2.) I found my relationships off balance. I was spending more time cultivating online relationships through meaningless "comments" instead of picking up the phone and actually calling a friend to catch up...I know, it's a strange concept these days. I thought I was super connected to so many people all at once, when really I wasn't connected to anyone at all. I used it as a substitute.

3.) I craved comments. I placed self-worth in whether or not people commented on my posts. I threw mini self pity parties when the comments didn't roll in after what I thought was a comment worthy post. My worth does not come from whether or not I impress so and so enough to spur them on to leave a comment. My self worth is in Christ. I'd check my email the morning after I posted just to see if anyone commented.

4.) I found myself "staging" if you will, for the sake of a good post. I don't know exactly how to explain this other than I always had "Would this be good post material" in the back of my mind.

5.) I stressed out if I hadn't posted in a while. This was a death trap for me. I'd seriously get more stressed about not posting in a couple of days than I would about not getting filled up on the Spirit by spending time with the Lord. This was a huge red flag to me that blogland wasn't for me.

6.) It fed my ego. Whether it was a post about me or someone else, I wanted people to want to read "MY BLOG" for a reason. That reason

It didn't start out this way. Only in the past year or so did I start experiencing these things. These things just slowly crept in. I couldn't put my finger on it for a long time. It was only when I stopped blogging during my pregnancy with Lincoln that I stepped out of the burning building long enough to actually see the fire. It wasn't even to the point that I was "obsessed" with blogging by any means, but I know that I don't have to be that far gone to be in Satan's foothold. Maybe you know exactly what I'm talking about or maybe you haven't a clue how or why I feel like this. Either way, we all areas where we are weak. This is one of my mine. Now that I know that, I have to flee. The devil prowls like a roaring lion. So I run the other way.

What it boils down to is that I had made an idol out of my blog. I'm reminded of the Ross King song titled, "Clear the Stage"

"Anything I put before my God IS AN IDOL.
Anything I want with all my heart IS AN IDOL.
Anything I can't stop thinking of IS AN IDOL.
Anything that I give all my love IS AN IDOL.

We must not worship something that's not even worth it.
Clear the stage.
Make some space.
For the One who deserves it."

"Everything is permissible for me, but not everything is beneficial. Everything is permissible for me-but I will not be mastered by anything. "
1 corinthians 6:12

Here's to clearing the stage & making some space...

Saturday, August 7, 2010

I Learned All I Needed to Know in Africa

What is it about a continent of people that makes this middle aged women want to sell everything, give everything and risk everything? Even after I spent almost 2 years fighting for my life due to various diseases from my last visit, still my thoughts are consumed with going back. I spend countless hours advocating and raising awareness for it. I am driven to help...but it's the people and their faces that drive me. What is it about Africa that makes me feel alive and yet gasping for air? Africa is like a drug. It fuels me, transforms me and leaves me quivering for more. Africa has changed me inside and out...and even the small amount I have done for Africa is nothing in comparison to the indebtedness I feel. I owe everything to a continent that is plundered, forgotten, lost, and robbed. A place where children can be groomed to kill, babies raped for a cure, villages turned against each other for power that is handed over to the rich man in a different country, female circumcision is normal, breast ironing is done to "protect" daughters, ...where 1 in 11 women die due to pregnancy related causes, where parents of twins would rather "give" them away than watch them become a statistic, a place where babies die everyday and mom's bury their children and babies grow up orphans, girls as young as 6 prostitute themselves for daily bread....
I do know this Africa. I am not naive....yet, this is not what I think of when my heart wanders. The Africa I love, the Africa that beats within my heart, the Africa I know and choose to see...
Is the Africa that taught this mother of 4 bio kids to be a mother of 6. The Africa that showed me what it meant to be a mother. Yes, I knew how to kiss booboo's , give birth, do play groups, change diapers....but when I traveled to Africa to pick up my 10 pound two year old twins..everything changed. I sat there quietly with tears pouring down my cheeks and watched as their mom kiss them goodbye. She possessed a strength I have never seen. She cried. I cried. We cried for two different reasons. Both of us cried tears of gratitude...
yet only one of us cried the tears of a true mother. So, when I get frustrated at real with 6 kids..two who are very needy...I see her..their mom and I take a deep breath and remember what it means to be a momma.
Africa taught me to worship. I have never in my life seen true worship until I went to Africa. If you have been to an African church then you have been touched by the people who live outside the walls. To me church is active. It is living the gospel. It is believing. It is reaching out. It is love. Inside the church, it was alive. People were praising, believing and worshiping with all they had. It was beauty in motion. I was lifted and moved. They had nothing...yet everything.
What changed me was not what was in the church, but it was those clinging to life outside. Outside one church I went to people were dying. I remember coming across what I thought was a dead man (I had seen a few). He was prostrate in front of a cross, under a sheet. I went to him, covering my nose from the smell of death...he moved. We sat him up. He knew his life was at the cross, he was surrendered. Ready to die. We lifted his head up, gave him water and prayed with him. Yeah, I learned how to worship in Africa.
Outside the same church..I met a mom to 13. She need not tell me her history. All kids looked different and some were considered, "unclean" due to disabilities. She lived in a concrete structure outside the church. They were all beggars and outcasts. I visited with the kids and got slobbery kisses from the "unclean"...They welcomed me with open arms and undeserving smiles...they taught me humility.
And many of you know the story of Gedese..the pregnant mom I met there. She had just lost her baby due to something very preventable here...pregnant again, scared and hopeless(even though she was an Olympic marathon runner). I brought her home with me and my very sick twins. The twins almost died while Gedese received care. 7 months later she delivered Christiana and they both almost died. After living with her for a year..I learned about perseverance. In spite of fight. You fight for the life of your baby. Even if you move halfway around the world with a stranger....

Just a few ways that Africa Schooled me

Thursday, August 5, 2010


I went to my obgyn today after skipping a few years of appointments. Didn't help I was tired and sick for a few days. This beautiful brunette walked in...I remember thinking, "oh what a cute nurse'. Um...she was my DOCTOR! This was my first clue I am getting older. My second clue...she placed her hand on my shoulder in the same way I do visiting seniors and said, "oh honey...I know this is hard, but it is time for you to get annual mammograms".


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Another Day...

This is not the best day to have our septic system and plumbing clog-up. Having to tell your 6 guests that are staying for the week to please pee outside is um....humiliating. It's probably not the best time to be vomiting all day either...

Welcome to another day at the Bosters

Tuesday, August 3, 2010


I had quite a few questions about my $50 a week food budget I "attempted" for 2 weeks. I would love to answer some of the questions and expand more on my thoughts.
1. Did I feel like my family sacrificed a lot?
I had several people and my awesome family worry that my kids maybe had to give up too much or they were deprived of food. Well, they did have to give up certain things and yes they were deprived of food. Our drinks went from occasional soda and juices down to water. I am sure they felt like they were suffering. Truth is drinking mostly water is not only FREE, but a lot healthier anyway. Soda and most juices are just empty calories that produce more waste. But they like soda and juice....yeah, and I like mochas. Same thing...both are not needed. They were deprived of food too. They did not raid the pantry freely for snacks. Snack food is typically expensive and not needed as well. They would get a snack, but I prepared them. I discovered that I can actually pop my own pop corn...get this..on the stove! Cheap and again healthier. So, yes we did sacrifice what we were used to for a healthier and less expensive life style.
2. Is this something I plan on implementing permanently for my family?
I would love to shout out a resounding, "YES"! Truth is...I'm not that disciplined. Again we wil chalk this up to life that Steffany imagines in her head. In my family lives on a commune. We have our own livestock, garden, chickens, alpacas and goats. I would wake up at the crack of dawn..collect eggs, milk my goat, choose my veggies from my garden, sew my outfit from my alpaca, school my kids, kiss my husband who works on the farm, and not have internet.
Since we know Steffany's world and the real world never collide...I am learning to find happiness in the areas that I can control. I absolutely want to make changes that fit into my families life.
3. How did I feed my family of 8-9 on $50?
The first week was awesome. I simply used what I had bought w/ what I already had. I realized I had WAY more than I thought I did. I used what I had in my cupboard and freezer. The first week was easy. The second week not so much. We had tons of company and that threw me off. I felt like they needed to eat certain things or a certain way. I also made the mistake of buying all my produce up front. By week two..I was out and when I don't have fresh fruit an d veggies I panic.
Bottom line-It is do-able. It does take planning. But it also requires re-learning. I was amazed to find how much I felt my family needed to eat. For me...I plan every meal around protein, veggie, grain and dairy. Unless I see all the food groups on my plate...I feel like I failed. In my mind a good meal has all of them. Truth family really could survive and thrive on just one of those for a meal. You don't need all of them for every meal. We could have smoothies for breakfast made with fruit and dairy, grain for lunch and protein for dinner. I think our expectations of meals are way out of whack.

So...yes, you can feed your family on way less. You can give more to charity. It is hard. It does take discipline. You really don't need what you think you do. And Yes, I will continue to cut back, reuse, and rethink what I think my family needs

It's Not Everyday...

You wake up to 5 additional kids in the house and don't even know their names or realize they were coming....

Just another day at the Bosters

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Stuff w/ a Slight Rant in the Middle

We spent the weekend shuffling rooms... 2 rooms, 5 kids, one room painted 2 colors was WAY more work than I thought. I am hoping it will be worth it. We basically have 3 bedrooms that 6 kids share. So, we have plenty of room. We just need to find the right combo:) For the past year or so we have had all 3 girls(11, 9, 4) in one room. Um...not working so well anymore. Xia has horrible nightmares and snores like a grown man and wakes up her older sister McKayley who is a light sleeper. So our preteen hasn't been getting the best sleep. She wakes up exhausted and cranky. Which then pushes our 9 year-old Faith to want to parent Xia to the point of exhausting everyone else. Our teenage son gets his own room for obvious reasons. Which left the two little boys in a room to them selves. Challenge is..only one little boy(Diezel) still takes a nap and Xia. This alone tied up two of the bedrooms for the afternoon. By that time the older girls had no place to have alone time if they needed it and Lukas had to be quiet no matter where he went in the house and Jace..well he had his room:) Not to mention the battle that waged between Faith and Xia over toys. If I had my way, all the kids would be in the same room with limited toys, space, and would have to "deal with it"..because after the 2 days I spent shuffling rooms, I came to the realization even more..THAT THEY HAVE WAY TOO MUCH! and I could shuffle rooms all I want, but truth is...we are spoiled. We have a beautiful home filled with stuff and more room than so many people. Sorry...slight rant...anyway, we changed rooms in hope of peace. The three little ones are now sharing a huge room. The 2 girls once again have their own space and as for my teenage son..well, he continues to be great!