Franklin Five

Let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. 1 John 3:18

Monday, September 27, 2010

One Less

Her eyes and her smile
melt our hearts!

"One less broken heart in the world tonight." Matthew West in his new song, One Less

My brother and his wife were in Europe when we returned to Nashville with Lidiyanna last week. They didn't get to be at the airport to welcome us home, and we couldn't wait for them to get home so they could meet Lidiyanna. Sunday night, they came over and met their neice for the first time. It was great to all be together. What a night of celebrating!! The cousins had a great time together, and Grace got to meet her very first girl cousin. Yipee for girls!!

(Don't let Wesley fool you...he was really having a good time!)

Saturday, September 25, 2010


As we finish our first week home as a family of five, I look back at the week and reflect. I thought it would be so filled with emotion but it really can be summed up in one word...peaceful.

I've felt peace when I've gazed into my daughter's eyes as she drinks her bottle. I've felt peace as I've watched the boys completely adore their little sister. I've felt peace even in the chaos of the dinner time hour when we are trying to finish homework, settle a fussy baby, and get dinner on the table (which thankfully was brought to us by wonderful friends-not too hard to get that on the table).

I was so anxious with my other babies always wondering if they were getting enough to eat or if I was doing everything the right way. I don't feel that uncertainity with Lidiyanna. Yes, I've had moments of trying to learn what she needs, but mostly I've felt peace as I care for her. Maybe it's because she's my third child, maybe it's because I'm not nursing and I don't have the hormones that go along with that, and maybe it's because she's not a tiny newborn. I'm sure all of this things help to make me feel more settled. I also believe that God is showering us with peace at this time.

He has taken us across the world and brought us home with a new daughter. I look at her and think about all that she has gone through in her seven months of her life. I think about how she could have been one of the babies on the backs of the beggars out in the streets of Addis. I am completely amazed and thankful for God's hand who mercifully plucked her from a life of despair and gave her a family. I look at our family and am utterly grateful for the daughter He has given us. Why did He choose us to be her family? Why do I get to be her mommy? I will never understand, but I will forever be thankful and honored.

I love her so much already. I did not carry her in my tummy for nine months, but we prayed for her, dreamed about her, and loved her for months before we finally held her. She fits in perfectly in our home. She is a Franklin, and my heart is filled with peace.

Because of the tender mercy of our God, with which the Sunrise from on high shall visit us, to shine upon those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.
Luke 1:78-79

Friday, September 24, 2010

Blessings from the week

  • swinging in my backyard with my daughter and son
  • watching Graham play with Lidiyanna and hearing her giggle in response
  • seeing my sweet girl sleeping peacefully in her crib in her new home
  • being loved by friends and family who welcomed us at the airport
  • enjoying the delicious dinners that friends have been bringing over and getting to spend more time with my kids because I don't have to cook
  • having Tim home this week
  • getting a full night's sleep in my own bed
  • seeing Graham get off the bus every afternoon with a smile on his face
  • Wesley in his "Big Brother" shirt and watching him shine in his new role
  • watching God answer prayers

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Monday, September 20, 2010

His Lovingkindess is Great!

"Praise the LORD, all nations; Laud Him, all peoples! For His lovingkindness is great toward us, and the truth of the LORD is everlasting. Praise the LORD!" Psalm 117

This was the verse for this week sent out by my church's weekly email. I just loved it and thought it was very appropriate for us this week.

Praise the Lord, for His lovingkindness is great!!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

We are home!!!

I can't write much now because I've got to go to bed, but I wanted to say how good it is to finally be home with our daughter. We had a good but exhausting trip, and now we are trying to relax and soak up the joy of being with our three children.

Lidiyanna had a cold the week we were in Ethiopia and now she seems to have an upset stomach. It's hard to know if it is just the long plane ride, lots of change in her little life, or a stomach bug. Pray that she feels better soon.

The boys simply adore her. They cannot get enough of her. Especially Graham. He does everything he can to make her smile which doesn't take much. The boys want to play with her, help with her bath, take her on walks, read books with her, and give her a bottle. They are so sweet and I'm loving watching all my children together.

Thanks for all your prayers. I just feel like I can breath a big sigh of relief. She's finally home!!!!

Friday, September 10, 2010


The day is finally almost here! We are leaving tomorrow to bring Lidiyanna home. I am so excited! This week has been full of emotions.

My dad arrived today to care for the boys while we are gone. Please pray for all three of them while we are away. I know he'll do a great job with them, but it's a lot to care for two children alone.

We will have a lay-over in Dubai Sunday night and arrive in Addis Monday morning. I just found out that we will get Lidiyanna Monday afternoon. From that point on, she will be with us! I'm so thrilled to really get to know my daughter. It was great to visit her last time, but now I will really care for her, learn about her personality, and hopefully start the bonding process.

Please pray for our safety on this trip. Pray that Lidiyanna quickly adjusts to new surroundings and sleeps and eats well. Pray that she starts bonding with us right away and that she does well on the plane ride home. Or, maybe you should just pray that we will have the strength and patience to handle what comes our way.

Whatever happens, this will be a week we will never forget. Thank you for all your prayers and support. The love and encouragement you have shown to us has been so wonderful.

It's hard to post pictures and do things on the blog while we are there, but I will be excited to post when we get home.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Our Girl is Coming Home!!

We found out today that we will be leaving on Saturday for Ethiopia!! We knew it was a big possiblity so we've been making plans for the trip. It was such a relief to know we really do get to leave this weekend to bring Lidiyanna home...finally!!

We will leave this Saturday, September 11th and return the next Saturday, the 18th. If anyone is in the Nashville area and would like to greet us at the airport, our flight gets in around 4:30. Everyone is welcome to meet us in the baggage area. We can't wait for you all to meet Lidiyanna.

I've had our bags partially packed for about two weeks now, but as I really start thinking about logistics, I'm getting a little nervous. How will she do on the plane ride? Naps, bottles, hair care, so much to think about.

Of course, we've been talking to the boys about this for so long, so they are thrilled. I know they are a little nervous, too, about their parents being gone for a week. Please keep them in your prayers while we are gone.

Graham has continued to enjoy kindergarten, but he's had some mornings that he didn't want to go to school. My dad will be staying with the boys and I want things to go smoothly for him while we are gone. I hope Graham will not be too teary while we are away. He's facing so many changes in his little life right now.

What my heart longs for most right now is for all of my birds to be in one nest. Soon, I will go to bed with my three children all tucked in safely under the same roof. It's hard to believe the day we've been waiting for and praying about for almost 16 months is finally here. I know there will be lots of adjustments to go through, but I am so excited we are about to be the Franklin Family of Five!! My heart gives thanks for God.