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Category Archives: faith and family

Character {when no one else is looking}

Some of my favorite quotes on character were spoken by one of the most revered coaches in the history of sports John Wooden who coached UCLA basketball from the 40’s to the 70’s. He was a devout Christian and family man–and quotes like his are the reason I will probably never write a book. It’s […]

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Jennifer OCain - July 26, 2014 - 9:04 am

Andrea this is such a great post on character and I will be sharing this! Thank you for encouraging me on ways to be a better mom too!

Following Dreams {everyone has a different purpose}

Oh my. Tomorrow Richard comes home. Thankful. So right after I got home from serving at Created for Care–my sidekick took off for Zambia to love on these little loves… And while he’s been gone. We sold our home. I got the list of “fix its” from the inspection that the buyers wanted. A very […]

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Gretchen - March 19, 2014 - 10:10 pm

Wow! It looks beautiful!
And Holy Moly! Next week! You really move!
Enjoy this exciting adventure and looking forward to seeing more photos of the place!

Ashley - March 20, 2014 - 7:43 am

LOVE. I would totally make the hike. Praying for your new adventure. (And praying for the move, ugh moving.) You’re a good mama…I love your perspective. Thank you.

Meaghan - March 20, 2014 - 10:11 am

Sounds like quite an adventure for your beautiful family! Contact your Extension Service office and they’ll help you learn to farm! 🙂

Tamara Gilbert - March 20, 2014 - 10:57 am

When God calls us down a road that looks different from others, there will always be odd comments. Just like adoption. Hang in there! We live in a small rural town and we’ve had goats and cows and our children have had amazing experiences. City life is good if that’s where God planted you, but if this is where He is calling you. Run!!! Always inspired by you and your family!

Kim - March 20, 2014 - 2:49 pm

I want to run across that field barefoot and lay down and look up at the beautiful sky! Congrats- you’re gonna love it!…says the one whose kiddo’s have enjoyed their Uncles farm since day one. It’s a great life.

Bobbi - March 20, 2014 - 3:11 pm

It takes so much courage to follow your dreams when they do not seem to fall in line what others want for you. Kudos to you and your family for making the best decision for your family. Foxfire Books should help with the farming! My father in law lives by them! 🙂

SleepyMom - March 21, 2014 - 12:36 pm

You are right, no one swings by in the city anyhow. If one of my friends moved to a farm only 8 miles further away, I would most likely end up visiting more because it seems reasonable to say, “we’d love to come hang out at your farm and be introduced to the goats, etc.” It would be worth the extra 15 minutes!
I hope you’ll get to raise laying hens. My dad started this and the kids ask to drive to TN to visit the chickens and no I dont’ drive 7+ hours just to see chickens but it sure makes our once or twice a year visit extra awesome. The chickens get fed a lot and the kids eat more eggs than usual at breakfast. Win, win.
Enjoy your farm!

Robyn Beall - March 23, 2014 - 1:53 pm

Andrea, I am so very happy for your sweet family! We too have purchased 10 acres that will be an additional 8 miles from where we currently live. And I too have heard all the same comments. But I have to trust, knowing that the Lord led our hearts to this place, that he wants to do great things for him through us and for now, I just have to trust! God calls some to the city, some to foreign lands and some to the country, but all to serve him and glorify him! Excited to follow along your journey as we walk similar paths!

Maureen - March 24, 2014 - 4:14 pm

Your post reminds me of my favorite poem by Robert Frost. This is my favorite part…

“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”

Dreams are personal, they are between you and God.
I am so excited for you and your family!

Can’t wait to see pictures of Move-in day!!

Mimi Elmer - March 24, 2014 - 6:00 pm

Wow! What a week for your family! God is good! Praying his hand on you as you move this week!


Nikki - March 24, 2014 - 9:21 pm

So excited for you all! May you find encouragement and help not only from the expected people and places, but also from the unexpected.

marci - April 14, 2014 - 7:34 pm

Faith is not a light that dispels all our darkness,but a lamp that guides our steps at night and that is enough for the road…Lumen Fiedei
Buen Camino ,sweet friend in Christ . What sweet times ahead for your family.
God has had His hand on all of this journey ,I have no doubt !
Love and Pax,Marci

Meet Lauren and her sweet family {love this momma}

It is such an honor to call this momma a friend. She is truly the most tender, sweetest person I know. What an honor it is to be on the Created for Care team with her…and what a gift it is to call her a friend. Her story blesses me…thought it might bless you too–and […]

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Lauren Casper - March 18, 2014 - 11:36 am

Thank you so much for sharing our video — love you too!!!!! xoxoxoxo

How Lyme Disease Changed Me {lessons for this mom’s heart}

I haven’t written much about my awful, dark, difficult—once hopeless days…weeks…months…years of dealing with Lyme disease. It was such a hard season for me–and a time in my life that I had what is known in the Lyme world as “brain fog”–so forming logical thoughts, much less writing a blog about it was impossible for […]

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Erika - February 25, 2014 - 1:37 am

Hi Andrea! I had to open up my laptop and comment because you always say “I don’t know if anyone even reads my blog” – and I want you to know that I read every single post!!! 🙂 I have read your blog for years – probably since you started it – although I have no idea how I found it. Now I read it on my phone – and it’s just about impossible to comment there.

You have been SUCH an encouragement to me as you’ve shared your heart. I can’t tell you what an impact you’ve had through this blog. Not just me – but I tell people about your blog – like one sweet friend of mine adopted their son from China in June 2013- and I told her to read your blog because she didn’t know anyone else adopting internationally. I have told many friends about your perspective and the challenges you face – and this post about Lyme Disease is one I’m sure to pass on to anyone I meet who is struggling with it or knows someone who is!

Also- you are a big encouragement to me in the realm of homeschooling and keeping family a priority.

We may never meet in person – but I want you to know that the ripple effect of your blog has reached me – and I know that my faith and my family are stronger as a result of reading your blog all these years.

Can’t wait to see what the future holds for you and your crew as you move to the farm and start a whole new chapter!


Ashley - February 26, 2014 - 9:09 am

Beautifully written. Thank you for this piece of vulnerability. I especially loved what you “needed to know” it spoke volumes to me today.

sarah hurst - February 26, 2014 - 1:35 pm

what a blessing you are to so many! i remember reading your blog during those months, years of not feeling well and not knowing what was wrong. you continued to trust and believe that the Lord had a plan through it all and i’m so thankful that you’re now on the other side! thank you for your encouraging words!

Nancy Brownlee - February 26, 2014 - 1:43 pm

Dear Andrea, A friend connected me to your blog this week and i read your Feb. 2014 post for the first time. For the most part, your story could be my story. Two biological and one adopted children, I have struggled with lyme for going on ten years and I too am much better but the journey has been so long and so hard. The story got even harder last year when my 14 year old daughter manifested major lyme symptoms and missed 20 weeks of school. She still has her PICC line and is receiving antibiotics that way. We did the herbal treatments for two years but just could not stave it off. I have forwarded your blog to a number of friends who contracted lyme the same time we did…a family mission trip we took to TN. I want to thank you fro the encouragement….i often thought of “going public” with our disease but never felt lead by the Lord to do so. Your last blog provides such hope for healing for those in the valley. My daughter Mary and i have been so blessed by our time together and we certainly have had no choice but to lean totally on the Lord. We have slowly moved Him into the position of healer instead of medicines and doctors and yet consider them blessings/gifts from HIm. I am very encouraged and pray often for lyme to become more “exposed” to the world so that perhaps better tests and treatments become available. I see that happening mostly through social media. So thank you once again! Your post was a blessing. Nancy

jenny marrs - February 26, 2014 - 7:58 pm

oh, andrea! my husband battled lymes, as well, but not for nearly as long as you. thankfully, he was diagnosed rather quickly (it took a few months)…it is so unbelievable how little doctors in the south know about this disease!! so, so scary!! we had just had our twins … they were in the nicu for a month and we stayed in a room down the hall. dave just thought he had a terrible flu and the doctors gave him steroid shots to help, which actually hid the symptoms for a little while. eventually, he went to a number of doctors and kept being told that his extreme fatigue (and all the other symptoms) were caused by becoming a new dad of twins. REALLY?!? It was so unbelievable and scary and frustrating. i am so thankful that you were both finally diagnosed properly and received treatment and healing!!

also, i had to comment because this post spoke such encouragement and truth into my heart tonight.. dealing with a totally different situation in this season but really feeling thankful that i read this because it was so encouraging!! thank you:)!!

Melissa - February 27, 2014 - 9:58 am

I also wanted to say that I have followed your blog for several years…I can’t believe it’s been so long since your battle with Lyme’s Disease because I remember that time so easily! Your faith in the Lord and positive outlook has been so encouraging. I started reading your blog because I was interested in adoption and although our lives haven’t yet taken that road, I’ve learned a lot from you about loving on others and taking joy in your children; blessings from God. I’m glad that you are better now and still using your blog to lift up and encourage others.

Julie - February 28, 2014 - 1:26 pm

Wow! That is an awesome story– thank you for sharing and encouraging. I would love to know the doctors name if you are able to give it out!

Grace - March 1, 2014 - 3:51 pm

I stumbled across your blog and…Thank you. You’ve touched my heart…to keep trusting no matter what! I know what you’re talking about…ah, it’s so elusive. Constantly struggling with some yet unknown “whatever” it is, isn’t easy, but how great to know our great Physician. It will be worth it all when we see Jesus!!!

Karen - March 21, 2014 - 2:16 pm

Andrea- I have been to C4C for the third year now. We have some friends in common. I loved reading your heart on here about your season of illness. I was diagnosed with 2 types of thyroid cancer and had a thyroidectomy in November of this year. I then had to do nuclear medicine which threw me into a very hypothyroid state. I experience a lot of the same symptoms, vertigo, brain fog, and much pain every day. I also home school my two kiddos. I thank you for what an encouragement you are to other women out there. Myself included. Telling your truth is hard, but powerful. There was no way, according to my Doctors, that I should have been ready for C4C this year. But, I knew that God wanted me there, and I prayed for Him to make a way and he answered my prayers. I heard so much at C4C that I needed to hear and was able to praise my father for all the blessings this illness has brought to my life. His strength is made perfect in our weakness. That used to just be words to me, but in my humble state I now know it to be so. very. true. Thanks for all you do to share even through the fogs of life!