Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Silas Update


Silas has been home for almost five months already... how time flies with seven children!


This has been our easiest adoption yet... I keep wondering when the issues are going to surface, and yet I don't think they will any time soon.


This boy is so sweet, so obedient, so goofy, so laid back and so compliant. We rarely have to discipline him, he has picked up our rules quickly and follows them without complaint.


Silas loves his big brothers, he loves Daddy's car and he loves playing in the sandbox with his sisters.


Silas learned how to ride a two wheeler this summer and was so proud of himself. We were pretty excited too.

His health at this point seems to be a non issue and Spina Bifida is not slowing him down in any way.

PicMonkey Collage

Silas loves preschool and asks to go everyday. And everyday, when I pick him up he says with a big smile, "I missed you mommy! Did you miss me?"


He eats everything we give him, but usually has to put his special hot sauce on it. It's not hot enough if his nose doesn't run or his eyes don't water. He is a true Hunan boy!


He sleeps like a charm and has now moved into a room with Micah. He falls asleep within seconds of putting him down and sleeps until 7am, when the rest of the house gets up.

He is such a blessing in our lives!

I am joining in on this weeks Sunday Snapshot.

Ni Hao Yall

These photos were taken with a Nikon D90, 50mm lens, F 4.5, ISO 200.
Edited in Lightroom 4 using Pretty Preset Vintage Spring and Willette's Baby Lamb

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

New Glasses


I had wanted to get Lilah new glasses before she started Kindergarten, but when I took her in they tested her eyes and then recommended we patch 5-6 hours per day again, to see if her prescription would change at all.


After six weeks of patching, her prescription changed very slightly and they saw she had an astigmatism. We ordered new glasses.


It is very difficult to pick glasses for Lilah as she is just so small, the options are very limited. She wanted purple. We had to settle for purple with pink. But hey, they are Disney Princess glasses, so that was okay with her!


We think she looks adorable!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Mushroom Soup and a great book


Mushroom and Garlic Soup:

1 Whole Garlic or 1 Roasted Garlic,
3.5 – 4 Cups Sliced Button Mushrooms
1 Cup Milk or 1/2 Cup Milk + 1/2 Cup Cream (if you want to indulge)
2 Tablespoons Flour
1 Medium Onion, chopped
Black Pepper + Crushed Pepper (adjust amount to taste)
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil or Tangy Hot Oil or Hot Chile Oil
2 Cups Water/Stock (or as much as you need)
Green Onions/Scallions, Finely Chopped (For Garnish)
Red Pepper Flakes (For Garnish)
Thyme (for Garnish)
Tangy Hot Oil or Hot Chile Oil (For Garnish) – [I made the Hot Chile oil using Sesame Oil with crushed pepper]
Lemon Juice (Optional)


(If you are using the roasted garlic, mash it and set aside).

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil; fry the garlic till golden. Add the sliced mushrooms to the same pan; fry them at high heat along with the garlic till they are roasted light brown. Remove them from the pan, and set aside. Separate some of the roasted/fried mushrooms for adding them to the soup later for a chunky texture or for garnish.

In the same pan add the the rest of the oil, and the onions and cook them at medium heat till they are clear and softened. Add the thyme, salt and black pepper, crushed red pepper to the pan with the onions. Cook them at medium heat for about 5 minutes.

Sprinkle the flour and stir it in the above mix. Add half of the milk and simmer for about 2-3 minutes at low heat. Add the mushrooms (other than the part that was set separate for later) and the mashed roasted garlic, if you are using and cook everything together for 3-4 minutes.

Switch off the heat and carefully blend the in ingredients in the pan with an immersion blender, or transfer everything to a blender and blend till it is pureed. (I left mine slightly coarse; as I like the texture that way). If you want it creamy, make a smooth and creamy blend.

Return to the pan, add rest of the milk, water and the rest of the mushrooms. Simmer at low for about 10 more minutes. Remove from heat and squirt a teensy bit of lemon juice.

Ladle into individual bowls. Generously drizzle the Spicy Oil on the soup.

Serve warm garnished with Crushed Pepper, Scallions and Thyme.


I had a very similar soup to this while in Rosebud this summer and knew I had to find the recipe. This recipe tastes the same, but the chili oil gives it even more of a kick. Garlic and hot peppers... what could be better?!

(This recipe is from


I just have to say here that I think Chris Bohjalian is now my new favourite author. Every. Single. Book. that he writes amazes me. I cannot put them down. The Sandcastle Girls was no exception.

It is a powerful and unforgettable historical novel about the Armenian Genocide that took place during World War I. The novel moves between the past and the present. A young woman searching her families history, discovers the truth about her grandmothers past. It is a story of heartbreak, war, love and secrets.

I had never heard of the Armenian Genocide and although this novel is fictional, my eyes were opened to the horrors that the Armenians suffered through during this time. I learned so much from this book. I could not put it down.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Spirit of Adoption video

Well, since my husband decided to post this to Facebook, I have decided to post it here as well. This is our new presentation video that we will be using when promoting our cause. We have some exciting opportunities to share in the next while and are hoping to receive even more invitations!

God is in control of this, I have to remember that when I start to get overwhelmed by it all! And He is good. All the time.

Don't forget to pause the music at the bottom of my page before playing the video.

SPIRIT OF ADOPTION from Paige Riegel on Vimeo.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Spirit of Adoption: Waiting to Belong


It never ceases to amaze me how God works.

How he can place someone in your life at a certain point in time, you don't see that person for many, many years, and then God pulls you together again.

Seventeen years ago I met a woman through our church at that time, named Wendy Kittlitz. She had a little girl the same age as our first child, and they were both named Abby. Wendy knew Tim's family from even further back. She used to work for Tim's parents in their bookstore in Abbottsford. Wendy and her husband adopted a little girl from Haiti and then moved on to Calgary.

Wendy Kittlitz is one amazing woman. She worked for Christian Adoption Services in Calgary for ten years and now works for Focus on the Family in Vancouver where she leads an initiative called "Waiting to Belong" which offers Christian-based information about adoption to Canadian families.

Wendy saw my website on Facebook and immediately asked us if she could interview Susan and I for her newsletter on Waiting to Belong. She also asked us if we would present on October 4th at West Edmonton Christian Alliance Church, as they are hosting an information night for foster and adoptive families. Of course, we were very excited and amazed that our organization was being promoted more widely, thanks to Wendy.

You can see our interview here:

Spirit of Adoption is listed under What's New...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Preschool for Silas


Today, Silas started preschool. He has been so excited and it was really hard for him to wait, when everyday, he watched all his siblings go to school without him.


Silas is going to Little Blessings Christian Preschool, which is where Lilah and Zoe went last year. We had checked out the school and met the teacher on Saturday, so he was somewhat prepared. The teacher at this school is amazing! She just adopted a little four year old girl and so she understands the process of adoption and what that can do to a child.

I also met another mom who just adopted a four year old boy in May (same as Silas) but locally and we want to get together to talk more.


Silas went to school from 9am to 6pm everyday when he was living in China. He even had all three meals there. So he does know what school is and what it is like to go, even if he does only get to go three afternoons a week here.


Silas did have one little breakdown today. He tries to be so strong, but when he cries he really lets it all out and I am sure it was out of fear of me leaving him -- even though it was only for an hour today.

He told me when I picked him up, "I missed you mommy!"

I told him I missed him too.

And I did.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Violin Lessons


Today, I went out and rented this sweet violin. Someone in house is about to start some lessons.


This violin is about the tiniest violin I have ever seen! It is so cute...


Lilah will be starting lessons on Monday. She seems to be very musical, she sings very well and loves music. She gets very nervous and insecure when she is put on stage in a group -- like in dance class -- but I think playing an instrument might just be the right thing for her.

PicMonkey Collage

Lilah is so excited to start playing... it could be interesting... I may need some ear plugs.

You can see in some of these photos how Lilah's eye looks. She is one tough little girl. She handles pain very well and didn't ask for any painkillers after the first day. The swelling in her eye is going down day by day, but the eye is getting blacker each day too.

They took the fat from her belly, so she has one stitch in her belly button. She also has one stitch on the outer part of her eyelid and then one stitch in her nose, where they also went through. The surgery took longer than I expected and she was in recovery for quite awhile due to pain.

Hopefully, once the swelling goes down, we will see that everything looks good and she will only need one more fill. We will see the surgeon in 3 months and see what he says then.


When words leave off, music begins. -- Heinrich Heine

Thursday, September 6, 2012



Today, is the little girls first day of Kindergarten. They were suppose to start yesterday, but because of Lilah's surgery, we postponed it one day.


They are so excited.

We have a brand new school in our area, and this year I have five kids all in the same school. Kindergarten to grade nine.


Lilah and Zoe are in the afternoon class... and waiting all morning is not easy!



Make each day your masterpiece. -- John Wooden

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Day Surgery


Please keep Lilah in your prayers tomorrow as she heads to the University of Alberta hospital for a day surgery.

The plastic surgeon will be doing a fat injection into her face below her right eye in order to help fill in the sunken space where her Tessier cleft runs. This will likely be the first of three or more injections.

It should be short and fairly straight forward, but this process is never fun!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Canadian Rockies


"The mountains will bring peace to the people..." -- Psalm 72:3

This is the verse posted on a sign when you enter the town of Radium, BC.


We are home from our last summer holiday. Tuesday the kids head to school and another busy school year will begin!

I know I say this everytime we go to the mountains... but wow... how they amaze me! How blessed I am to live here, so close to something so powerful. I am in awe.


Abby and I headed to the edge of the cliffs one evening to take some photos of the sunset. It was one of those hot summer nights, when you can smell everything beautiful.


Sometimes I even hand off my camera, just to prove that I was actually there.


"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves." ~John Muir



"God writes the gospel not in the Bible alone, but on trees and flowers and clouds and stars." ~Author unknown


When you drive by this little pond, it looks like it is a bright emerald green. I wanted to stop and take some photos to try to capture it's "green" beauty, but when we headed down the hill, through the trees and we stood right in front of it, it was no longer green.



What you couldn't see from the road, was these amazing pink water lilies that filled the pond!


Somehow, it felt like a little blessing to come across this amazing sight.



"Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy." - 1 Peter 1:8

And I just have to add one shot of all our kids...