“The rule for all of us is perfectly simple. Do not waste time bothering whether you 'love' your neighbour; act as if you did. As soon as we do this we find one of the great secrets. When you are behaving as if you loved someone, you will presently come to love him. “
—Mere Christianity

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Snow in SoCal??

Yes, Virginia, it does snow in SoCal.  It snowed Friday, and Saturday there was still snow on the ground.  But by Sunday?? Well, this is California after all...

See, no snow.  I wouldn't have believed there had been snow there if I didn't live here.

Out for a hike...

Crossing the "river"...

You can do it, really, you can...

She didn't think she could.

The view....

The wild flowers.  Yes, they really are tiny.

Notice how Cadence is always in the front?

Cadence found one I missed.

The end of the trail for today.  Snack time!

Ahh, what beauty.  And a Papa teaching moment.  In this picture there lurks danger...  do you see it?...  Back there by that big tree...

See it now?  Recognize it?  OK, a closeup...

For those of you that don't recognize this, this is Poison Oak.  Just innocently hiding under the real Oak.  You don't want to get too close to this.

And the BIG accomplishment is standing on a BIG rock!!!   But notice that the Big sister doesn't look as brave!

In this picture is another plant you don't want a close encounter with.  See it?

Stinging Nettle...

Papa running rear guard back down the trail...

Cadence jumping from rock to rock.

Clarisse not exactly jumping...

I wonder what made this footprint?

All that hiking really takes it out of you!

Hope you enjoyed our hike as much as we did...


Sunday, April 3, 2011

New pictures

I posted on Shauna's blog that I would be posting new pictures today... so here they are!

To start with, because we were going to have the grandkids for several days while Reagan was in the hospital for open heart surgery, we made lots of plans to keep them entertained.  One of those plans was for a treasure hunt, but since their visit was cut way short by Reagan only being in the hospital for 36 hours... it didn't happen.  So we did it today... and they loved it!


Of course Reagan was tired out by it all...

But after a little nap...

And Reagan had to get her Grammy time... 
(or did Grammy have to get her Reagan time? )

And then it was time to go home...

A fun day was had by all...


Thursday, March 24, 2011

48 hours...

48 hours ago we were walking into Loma Linda Children's Hospital to hand off Reagan for her heart surgery...

The next day (yesterday) while Mama was at the hospital with Reagan...

Then later in the day...

Reagan is safely back at home...

48 hours later... I'm off to work!  See ya!


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

That's how it is...

This post is a direct response to a comment made on Patti's Facebook post about Carrington.  Michelle Young wrote...  "Wow i will pray how can they get away with this its so barbaric. Dont they have laws in these countries to protect these beautiful gifts from god"

Michelle, you live in a country where we still have a higher value on life than many other places.  From what I can glean from Carrington's story so far, there are probably no law's that were violated.  If Carrington has a medical condition (reflux) that made her unable to hold down food, then she will slowly starve to death without medical intervention.  It is an unfortunate truth that in the very countries that these DS children are, (and this is not limited to DS children) they are throw away children.  They have no value to society.  The money will not be spent on them.  They will not get medical care that they need because there is not enough money for this.  Welcome to socialized medicine.  Some people get treatment, some do not.   DS children do not have the "value" that "productive" members of society do.  Therefore they are put into orphanages, and when they are old enough, they are sent to the mental institute.  They will live as long as thier body will sustain life, then they will die.  I'm sure that if Carrington was not rescued at this last minute, her death would have been attributed to "natural causes", not neglect.

This is why it is so critically important to rescue these children.  I was going to list names at this point, but there are just too many to list.  And they are all important.  And I wouldn't want to leave any out. 

There is so much more that can be said on this subject, and I will be saying more.  But at this moment I will leave it here.  I am praising God that Carrington is now in this country where men fall to their knees in tears at the sight of her.  

And where my own granddaughter Reagan gets the love and caring that she deserves.  Where, at this very moment, as I am typing this, Dr. Bailey is repairing her heart.  At a hospital where children from all over the world are sent because they have value here.

God is good.


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Full Circle... Reprise

If you haven't read "Full Circle..." yet, read it before reading this post...

October, 1984...  Shauna was just 4 years old...

I was driving a truck delivering medical gases to Loma Linda Hospital.  Driving north into the campus, as I came over the railroad over crossing, there in front of me was the largest collection of media I had ever personally seen in one spot.  I was not surprised to see them there, only surprised at their number.  Why were they there?  They were following the story of "Baby Fae",  the baby who received the transplant of the baboon heart.  This was the result of ground breaking research by Dr. Leonard Bailey.  Research he pursued because, early in his career, he got tired of having parents told, "Your baby isn't going to live."

One year later Dr. Bailey transplanted a human heart into four day old "Baby Moses", who is alive and well...

Twenty-six and a half years later...  our granddaughter needs open heart surgery.  And who is her surgeon?  Yes, the very same Dr. Bailey...

Dr. Leonard Bailey holding Reagan

Back when I was right there every day delivering to the hospital, walking the halls in research, talking with these medical pioneers about what they were studying and doing, and following "Baby Fae's" story up close and personal, did it ever occur to me that one of my family would ever be a patient of Dr. Bailey??  Not in my wildest dreams....  but God knew!!  And now I am returning there again...  in just two weeks.  When Reagan gets her heart fixed by the hands of a man whose life-time passion has been to save the lives of babies born with congenital heart defects.

And another story comes full circle...


Monday, February 28, 2011

I have heavily borrowed from the blog of a good friend Patti for this post.  You can visit her blog here.

Dear friends, So many of you already know this beautiful little face....


Olga turned five last month. She has spent the last five years in an orphanage in Eastern Europe, without the love of a mommy and daddy- simply because she arrived in life exactly as God designed her. One chromosome too many, and her fate was sealed from birth.


Sealed, because in Eastern Europe, babies who are born with Down syndrome are deemed unacceptable at birth. They are discarded as cast-offs of society, and when they turn five they leave the only home they've ever known...


And I wish I could say that for most of these children, leaving that home meant going to a place of safety, a place of happiness, a place where they would finally know the love of a family...know what it meant to be cuddled or sung to or read to, tucked in at night, prayed for, loved.

Instead, they are taken to a place that most people wouldn't leave their family pet...

A place of living hell, where they will never know the tenderness of a parent, never know the security of being raised in a family, and there they will stay, one ugly, pain-filled day at a time...until they die.


I read a post last month that stayed with me to this day. It was called From baby dolls to bedstraps...  The blog author wrote about Elizabeth, an orphan on Reece's Rainbow who had been transferred to a mental institution, waiting for a family to step forward for her. Her words still haunt me.

I wonder where she thought she was going as they led her out of the orphanage that day. Did she think that maybe it was finally her turn? That they were taking her to her forever Mommy and Daddy? And when they instead took her inside that dreadful place, when they shaved her head and tied her to a too-small metal crib...

when they turned their backs and



when they left her confused, terrified,

in a room where the wails of schizophrenic adults echo through the cold air

what was going through her young mind?

Did she wonder if she was being punished?

How long did she hold out hope that this was only temporary?

That any minute, they would come and take her back to the baby house

to her baby dolls and teddy bear,

to her best friend, Angelina?

Did she long to free her arms from the restraints

to cover her head with her hands

to drown out the scary noises

the scary sights

the scary smells?

That could be our Reagan….

It could be your child.

And what if it were?

What if you woke up one morning

and by some hellish, twilight-zone twist of fate

your child wasn’t still tucked into that warm bed down the hall,

what if your child was trapped across the dark sea

in that nightmare that is

the institution?





Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. Proverbs 24:11

Elizabeth is being rescued today, thanks to the efforts of that blogging mama, and others like her.

Olga is being rescued today, thanks to so many of you...you gave so much and created such a large grant that a family was able to step forward and start the process of adoption.

The Abells have done so much already, towards rescuing Olga. We can't even imagine all the paperwork and prayer and emotion and finances that goes into an international adoption. They have done numerous fundraisers, and will continue to do so until they can bring Olga home.

Through the help of so many, a grant of over $13,000 has been raised for Olga's adoption. That grant is set aside for the final travel costs and fees that it will take to bring Olga home. It will take every penny of that and then some.

Right now the Abells are in need of raising the $7,000 that is needed to submit their dossier for Olga. Without that dossier we don't even know if Olga has been transferred yet. Here in America you just pick up the phone and ask these questions. But here in America we don't tie five year old girls to cribs to keep them from climbing out. The Abells need to submit that dossier as soon as possible- at the very least to find out if she has been transferred already- because we know an army of prayer warriors who is going to want to know that piece of information as well. And at the very most, it could be able to hold Olga at the baby house until the Abells can rescue her. We wish we could say with certainty that she won't be transferred- truthfully we just don't know that.

Olga has been so heavy on our hearts for months- her picture is up on our refrigerator and will not come down until she is safe here in this country.

We DO trust that God has a plan here.

We truly believe that there is a network of people who love Olga here in blogland...a net that is woven by God and is stretching out across this blessed country we live in, and even beyond to generous hearts in other nations. We cannot express enough how thankful we are to be a small part of what God has already done for Olga, Peter and Kareen. But we don't think our job is done.

Olga needs us.

We don't want her to spend one more forsaken day in that place than she has to.

There is not a giveaway today. The prizes were never the real reason we all gave anyway.

So we're asking- for one day- for you to do whatever you could to help Olga. Whether that's $10 or $20 or even a hundred...if you are able to help raise this money for the dossier, please do so HERE...

...every single dollar goes to the Abell's adoption fund, and every single dollar will help.

We're calling this A Day to Save Olga, because there are about 17 blogging mamas and one blogging grandpa who have set aside this day to blog, post on Facebook, pray, give and spread the word to SAVE OLGA.

Will you help us?

We know you will   :)

"Papa" and Grammy

Monday, February 21, 2011

It's hard to believe...

that this little angel...

our perfect little grand daughter Reagan...

who loves Grammy...

and loves Mama...

and loves playing....

and who looks so happy...

has a hole in her heart and needs open heart surgery.  in the very near future.  but it's true.  Please keep her and her family and her doctors in your prayers.  And you can follow her story here and on Shauna's blog.