Saturday, September 24, 2016

Josiah's Arrival!

Last Tuesday night, on September 20th, we joyfully welcomed our precious son
Josiah Samuel Matias
into the world, weighing 4.085 kilos (9 pounds) and measuring 52 centimeters.  

We are thankful that Josiah is strong and healthy, he is breastfeeding wonderfully, and overall is doing great! Because he is so big, the labor and delivery took longer than my previous births, but he eventually made his way here and we are extremely happy.  
Josiah is our BIG boy!  

Here is a short video of some of Josiah's first minutes in this world.

On Wednesday afternoon, my mom and our daughters came to meet Josiah in the hospital.  It was a special moment!

By Thursday morning we were leaving the hospital to take Josiah home! 


We are now adapting to having a newborn baby boy.  Thank you all for the many prayers, and messages of love and congratulations this week.

We are rejoicing in the gift of Josiah's life in our family!

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning." 
~ James 1:17 (NKJV) ~

Monday, September 12, 2016

Jessie's 4th Birthday!

 Last week, on September 8th, Jessie turned 4 years old!

We actually had a little birthday celebration for Jessie a week before her birthday, just in case her baby brother decided he wanted to be born on or close to her birthday.  We wanted to make sure we celebrated her birthday properly and that she felt extra special and loved around her birthday, even in the midst of all the exciting changes going on in our family.

Here are a few photos of Jessie's 4th birthday!

Our dear friends, the Meikle family, came over to celebrate with us. Uncle Robert prayed a blessing over Jessie's life!

Jessie dressed up in her favorite princess dress to unwrap her birthday presents, many sent from family who could not be here with us.

Jessie was truly grateful for every gift she received.  After unwrapping her presents she repeatedly said over and over, "Mommy, I love all my birthday presents!" It made my momma-heart happy to see her sincere and thankful heart.  Jessie truly delighted in every aspect of her birthday celebration!

Felipe drew this special birthday sign for Jessie! She loved it!

As is our family custom, we usually try to do some kind of special outing to celebrate birthdays.   We got free tickets to a nearby amusement park (when we visited for Sophia´s birthday), so we saved the tickets until recently to also celebrate Jessie´s 4th birthday there! These free tickets were a huge blessing to us! 

On September 8th, the actual day of Jessie's birthday, Jessie received anonther SUPER special birthday gift. Grammy (my mom) arrived here in Brazil to visit our family!

My mom actually arrived in great timing, because our whole family was fighting sickness this past week (with lots of throwing up, an over-night hospital stay, and multiple trips to urgent care at crazy hours).  Having my mom here to help us out in various ways was a huge blessing to us.  Sadly, Jessie was quite sick on her actual birthday, so we were super thankful we had already celebrated early. It all worked out!

By yesterday (Sunday) we were all feeling MUCH better!  We praise the Lord for strengthened health!
Taking Grammy out for acai after church on Sunday! 

We are thankful for our Jessica Hope, and for all the sweetness, joy, affection, smiles, laughter, goodness, songs and silliness she brings to our family.

We love you sweet Jessie, and we are so thankful God has placed you in our family.  Simply being who you are blesses and brightens our lives each and every day!
You are a shining light for the Lord!

Jessie's Favorites at 4 years old!

                   Color: Pink (her favorite color is constantly changing though.)
                   Song: You Will Never Run Away (Rend Collective)
                   Food:  Rice & Beans (She's a true Brazilian)
                   Fruit:  Apples (preferably dipped in peanut butter - that's the American influence.)
                   Veggie: Salad (lettuce)
                   Treat:  Ice Cream
                   Things to do: Sing, play with her big sister & play computer games on 
                   Animal: cats
                   Toy: Play-doh and play-doh toys & her new Shopkins toy.
                   Book: Who's Going to Lick the Bowl?
                   Show: Peppa Pig
                   Games: Puzzles & Memory (Jessie wins this game almost every time!) 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

A Special Saturday at Casa Semear!

In addition to the daily programs at Casa Semear, several weekends a month we hold worship services or run other events at the ministry for the families and children living in the nearby slums.

Recently some young people from a local church (called Philadelphia Presbyterian) came to the ministry center to lead a fun Saturday afternoon program.  We are thankful for this new partnership with a Biblically solid church, located near the community.

Scroll down to see photos of a special Saturday at Casa Semear!

The church group performed the beautiful Max Lucado story,  You are Special, and then shared the gospel message. 

During the program, a dentist also taught the children and teens about dental health and hygiene.  Everyone then received a special dental hygiene kit at the end of the program.  The kids loved this present!

It was a great day! It is such a blessing to have the involvement of the local church and volunteers at Casa Semear. We hope you enjoyed seeing a bit of this special Saturday at Casa Semear!