Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Some Pictures…the ones I promised weeks ago. :-)  


Micah and the cup (his security blanket) I think they didn’t get much to drink at the institution. Certainly not whenever they wanted it. When we saw him eating lunch there was never any drink given. He hikes this cup under his arm and just keeps it with him. Very cute. And sad.


Our good friend Randy Done and Matthew.


The very pretty Hannah.


Eli…practicing his wrestling moves.


Matthew loves the brothers and sisters. He just loves being with us.


Micah is Randy’s pal (unless Randy is making Micah obey. :-) ).


All these pics were on the Saturday before Resurrection Day. (April 11). We had the Dickinson’s over (including their 2 new kids from Ukraine…they got home a couple of weeks after us), Randy & Brenda Done and a friend of Blake’s (it was also Blake’s 15th birthday!). Ugh. I’m old. :-) I had this great idea that it would be fun to dye eggs with everyone. So I boiled 5 dozen eggs and set up lots of cups of dye (with Brenda’s help). I took a couple of pics and left the room so that I could maintain my sanity. :-) And so the kids could just have fun without me saying be careful or don’t get that on your clothes or something silly and fatherly like that. :o)


The very pretty Bethany.


Wayne & Eli.


Marcus Dickinson


Blake & Hannah


The three stooges.

DSCF2047_face2 DSCF2046_face1

Are these two guys brothers or what?





Matthew & Hannah. He really loves Hannah. She’s so tender with him.


He didn’t every eat these leaves believe it or not.


Macey Dickinson


Our old swing set. The kids took it down and made way for the new one. We got home all excited to get the boys outside and playing on the swingset only to find that it was rotten and the bolts pulled through that hold the swings because the wood was disintegrated. Didn’t make the winter well I guess. So I started patching it and more and more fell off and came apart. So we ditched it. I’ll show a pic of the new one. I just finished it last Saturday night.


We’ve had this car since Blake was a baby. He just turned 15. Wish our real cars lasted that long.!!!


The wagon… One of their favorite things…


Friday, April 24, 2009

This Week...  

This week has been one filled with doctor's appointments, carting kids to school, laundry, baths, eating, cleaning, painting, building a swing set...  WHAT A WEEK!  Oh yeah, and we're moving all the kids around into different rooms.  Yikes.

Matthew is SO CLOSE to walking.  He wants to walk so badly.  This pic is him at the end of a long walk on all fours.  He just started doing this.  Eli did this for while just before he stood up and walked.  He walks as though he's standing straight up with his legs as straight as boards but he puts his hands on the floor.  It's comical to watch but he just wants to do it so bad!  It's a shame the caretakers in the orphanage didn't help him instead of leaving him in a bed all the time.

Micah is doing so well.  He didn't spit at church on Wednesday night.  In fact, the teachers said he was so well behaved they wondered what had happened.  Praise God!  Hopefully Sunday will be good too.  It was Biker Night at AWANA on Wednesday and he got a do-rag.  He liked wearing it and I must say he's pretty cute. read that on Sunday he faked a leg injury. soon as Mary got him in the building Wednesday night, guess what?  His leg injury returned.  She told him to get up and walk and knock it off and he did.  Foiled again!  Curses!!  :-)  Smart kid.

Thursday morning, was quite a morning.  :-o  
Here's our little man laid out sick on the couch.  After the fake leg injury, I would have believed him capable of feigning sickness too.  But I know for sure that his tummy was hurting.  No really...  I know for SURE.  Ugh.

Wednesday night, I suspected that he had had a lot of goldfish crackers to eat based on his poochy tummy and his shirt.  He woke up about 4:00 Thursday morning screaming and crying.  He's done that once before when he had a nightmare so we assumed that's what it was this time too or that he was just awake and wanted to get up or something.  Mary went and quieted him and all seemed to be well.  WRONG.  When I went down about 6 to get breakfast and laundry going, I could smell that someone had had a code: Brown during the night in a serious way but walked on by to get laundry, coffee and breakfast going.  I don't change them into their clothes from pj's until after they eat and potty so just decided we'd endure the diaper until after breakfast.  Wrong again!!  I went in about 6:15 to get Micah who was already awake but being quite.  I got close to the bed and the worst you can imagine doesn't even touch it.  So I turned on the light and it got worse.  :-)  Micah had had a serious blowout of diarrhea during the night (probably around 4:00???) and he likes to put his hands down the back of his diaper and scratch (we're trying to break him of that) but normally, while it's gross, it's  just a bad habit.  Ummm...let's just say that this time was very gross.  His hands were caked with it.  It was on his face, dripping out his pjs, on his shirt all over the blankets, the sheets and his stuffed animal that he always sleeps with (that Jamie Hejl gave him).  So I took him to the tub (holding him out in front of me...all the while him wanting to give me my usual good morning hugs and kisses...NOT ON YOUR LIFE BUCKO!).  So I handed the bathing off to Mary and went and got all the other stuff and put it in the washer.  Then poured bleach on my head to disinfect.  Not really, but probably needed to.  :-)

Then he wouldn't eat his breakfast (hello?  who are you and what did you do with Micah?).  So I let him sit in the floor and watch Franklin.  A few minutes later he was pointed at his stomach and crying so I laid him down on the sofa with a blanket.  He was happy then...  

What a morning.  Believe it or not, the next time he had diarrhea he alerted Mary and made it to the toilet before it happened.  Praise God for that!

So...anyone hungry for dinner now?  LOL

Blessed be the Name of the Lord...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

You probably think we've died...  

We've been SO busy...surprise surprise!  

Sorry we haven't updated you all lately.  Here's some pictures of our recent days.  Things are going real well with the boys and the whole family.  We've had a few discipline challenges at church with Micah.  He sees an opportunity to test boundaries with new people.  And might I add that these are new people who are aghast at the idea of disciplining a child with Down syndrome.  One of the workers said that she just couldn't spank Micah's hand or talk to him in an "angry russian" voice because he's so cute.  Hello!  Spitting in someone's face is not cute.  Ugh.

So this week, I popped in on him in class.  And guess what?  The glasses that he never touches and always insists on having on his face at home were off his face and they said every time they put them on him, he pulled them off and they were afraid he would break them so they just left them off.  So I grabbed him and the glasses and took him into the hall and told him in no uncertain terms that he would wear his glasses and he would not touch them again.  (He knows that both Mary and I mean business when we tell him to do something or not to do something).  And he had been spitting again.  The teacher ended up making a game out of time out so of course he kept doing it to keep the game going.  Argh.  I told them when he spits to  put him with force into a time out position so he knew that it was not a game and to speak to him in a sharp, low tone.  One of the tips in the Connected Child book which works great.  Then he knows it's not a game.  And I told them do anything but smile at him.  Yikes! Talk about gasoline on a raging fire!

So I talked to the teacher later in the day and after I went in there and told him how it would be, he was fine and on best behavior.  That was for another 2 hours!  So HE CAN DO IT!  

Sunday night, he was in a new room, with new teachers.  Mary went and checked on him near the beginning of the class and he was going crazy.  She pulled him out of the class, explained to him how it would be and took him back and re-instructed the teachers.  He was great for a while.  Then a whole bunch more kids showed up.  A sure way to set him off.  I thought I better check on him during the service and I walked up to the room only to see him on top of the table dancing and shaking his finger at his teacher.  Uh...that's not the way Malone children behave.  I just came right in the room (without knocking which the teachers don't like much) and since his back was to the door, he didn't see me (which definitely worked to my advantage).  I said in my angry russian voice, "WHAT are you doing?!"  He stopped dancing, sat down.  Not only had I snuck up on him and scared him with my voice, he was caught by papa.  He KNEW that he was doing wrong.  He KNEW that there would be discipline so he immediately started crying (his real loud high pitched baby cry...which is another story altogether).  I took him down the hall and we had talk and he sat in time out in a corner.  Then he got up and we hugged and kissed and he was all fine again.  There was another hour that he was in there and when we came back he had behaved like a gentleman the rest of the time.  So he may have Down syndrome, but he is apparently high functioning and has great understanding.  So there will be no excuses for that boy.  :-)'s something else weird that happened Sunday night.  We went to pick him up and the teacher said that they had gone to the play room and he was sitting on a padded block and when he stood up he pointed to his leg and sat down and started crying and wouldn't walk on it (he's a good walker and generally likes to walk).  So when we picked him up, we put him down to walk (because we have 1 not so good walker meaning he won't stay with the pack and a non walker).  He walked about 10 feet and then drew up his leg and pointed at his knee and started crying and sat down.  He was crying real tears.  So I was concerned something was broken or torn so I poked around a little bit.  Nothing.  I flexed it. Nothing.  So i put pressure on it from the bottom of his foot.  Nothing.   Hmmmm....  So I started thinking that maybe he was faking it.  The teacher came up and said he wasn't jumping or playing....just sitting before it happened so I thought again...this little squirrel is faking!  But then I got him up and the same thing happened a few steps later.  He was crying REAL tears.  So again I worked it over and no response.  In fact, he laughed hard and loud because it tickled.  This went on every few steps and people were all huddled around every time we stopped.  So we got out of the building and it was just me and him (Mary had stopped to talk to someone) and he was fine and we walked to van, he climbed in the van and jumped up in his seat (which is no easy task because we have a 12 passenger van that's high off the ground).  I purposely did not help him because I wanted to see how he would react to the use of his leg.  No reaction.  Everyone got in the van and we drove home.  He sat indian style all the way home (wouldn't that hurt if you injured your knee?).  We got home and as the other kids exited he was still in his seat and he pointed at his knee and started crying real tears again and pointed at them and then his knee.  I told them to ignore him and not react.  So he stopped crying, jumped out of his car seat, jumped out of the van and ran in the house.  I looked at Mary and was like, "What just happened?"  We couldn't believe it.  That little guy had been faking it.  Not only had he faked it, but he knew I knew he was faking and so he didn't try to get a reaction from me when it was just him and me. he smart or what???  Wow!  Funny and a little bit scary that he could be so convincing.  And Eli fake cries sometimes, but Micah can turn on tears too.  

Anyway...things are going great at home, better at church and will keep improving.  Matthew is doing so well.  He wants to walk so bad.  We had him fitted for Sure Steps today so we'll have those in a few weeks and if he's not walking by then, they will really help him.  His ankles roll even worse than Eli's did before he wore the sure steps to build up the muscles.  He is just as sweet as Micah is but he's not quite as forward about showing it.  He has not thrown a fit at the table in a long time which is a huge blessing!  He is so precious and so flexible and fits right in to what we're doing.  Micah does too for the most part.

We are SO BLESSED and are head over heals in love with these guys and our 5 other kids too!  God is SO GOOD to allow these 7 angels in our lives.

Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Posting soon  

Ugh... I haven't posted in a couple of days.   Too tired tonight.  Will post tomorrow.  Lots going on !

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Another neat thing...  

We've been making Micah wait to eat until we have prayed before meals.  This morning, I put his plate down in front of him.  He was the only one at the table and ready to eat.  I was making pancakes so I was just letting them come in as they were ready.  So I put his down and he sat there.  I thought maybe he was just tired and not ready to eat (which would be out of character for him).  I continued making pancakes and I looked up at him a couple of minutes later and he gave his little head nod and grunt and folded his hands and bowed his head and motioned for me to come over.  He wanted me to say the prayer so he could eat.  WOW!!

Tonight...  Matthew, the kid who is deeply, mentally delayed (as stated by the head doctor of the Novograd orphanage) lost a shoe at dinner (which is normal...the funny thing is that Eli loses a shoe when he eats too...WEIRD).  But I digress... :-)  When he lost it I just picked it up and tossed it in the shoe basket in the office/sleeping room.  I cleaned him up and got him out of the high chair and sat him in the floor so I could clean up Eli.  About five minutes later I walked by the office (where their beds are) and saw him playing in the big shoe basket we have for all the three little guys' shoes.  I walked by a couple of minutes later again again and the little guy had been looking for his other shoe and FOUND IT!  All their shoes are about the same color (navy blue) and he had found his match out of the 5 or 6 other pairs of shoes in the basket.   Not only had he found his match and was putting it on his foot, but he had picked up the other shoes and put them back in the basket!!  Wow.  Maybe not a big thing to ya'll but huge to us.  It really proves HE'S IN THERE!  Praise God.

It seems impossible to believe that we've been home three weeks.  And yet, in another way it seems impossible that three weeks ago, we were in Ukraine and had been there for 6 weeks.  God has certainly done great things in these three weeks.  We're all madly in love with the newest Malones.   It's AMAZING what God has done.  If we had conceived and delivered them, we couldn't possibly love them more.  It's like they've always been part of us.  God is so awesome!

Blessed Be the Name of the Lord...

Monday, April 13, 2009

Some Neat Things  

Some things that have taken me off guard in the last week with the boys...

When we drive up to the house, Micah just goes crazy with laughing and clapping and pointing.  He's so excited to be HOME.  HOME!!  He understands.

When we put Matthew in his bed, he just looks up at us and smiles so big and he wriggles all around doing what we have labeled the "happy dance."  He also does this when he gets ready to eat.  Just pure joy overflowing on to us.

Micah and Matthew just LOVE the bath. i have the privilege of giving them their bath right after dinner.  They just completely LOVE it!  Laughing, screaming, dancing around.

Micah loves the other kids.  When they get in the car when we pick them up from school, when he sees them for the first time in the morning, he just laughs and wants to get hugs and kisses all around.

Matthew loves to be held. Just sit with us.  I'm thinking he didn't get much of that.

God is good.  I have lots of great pics from the weekend that I will post soon. I don't have the right computer right now to do it.  Hopefully tomorrow!

Blessed be the Name of the Lord!

PS>>>>>congrats to the Sizemores who have committed to adopt Jeremiah!  Blessings!  (check out their blog

Friday, April 10, 2009

Happy Resurrection Day!  

As you celebrate the Resurrection this weekend, don't forget about the people across the street and across the oceans who have never experienced the Resurrection power in their lives.  What's you're part?

Proverbs 24:11-12 (The Message)
"Rescue the perishing; don't hesitate to step in and help.
If you say, "Hey, that's none of my business," will that get you off the hook?
Someone is watching you closely, you know— Someone not impressed with weak excuses." 

Help rescue Jeremiah  

Grab This Button

The Sizemores are going to be adopting Jeremiah from Taiwan.  They need your help.  Pray.

Don't miss the article in the next post down.  It's a winner.

An amazing article. My feelings put in to words by someone else.  

Grab the kleenex and enjoy....

Blessed be the Name of the Lord.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The little punkins  

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

It's Hard to Believe  

I look at the picture I posted earlier today and am just amazed that God has given us these blessings. How unworthy we are to receive His trust to raise these 7 beautiful children. Thank You, God.

We took the boys to the eye doctor on Monday. Here's the lowdown...
Matthew's vision is within normal limits and won't need glasses, but he has some little bumps/growths around one of his eyes and on his eyelid. It's some sort of viral thing that has to be lanced and scraped until it bleeds and scars and heals. And both tear ducts are either not working or are non existent. Either way, he'll have surgery on both eyes in a couple of weeks to get rid of the virus and to correct the tear duct problem.

Micah is nearly blind it seems. The normal farsightedness for children is 1.5 diopter. Micah is 8.5 in one eye and 9.5 in the other. He got his glasses today. They are thick and make his eyes really big but he is EVEN CUTER than before! He loves the glasses. He just points at them and smiles and giggles. He has started grabbing our faces and forcing them to look at him and he just stares at us. Wow. He is an amazing boy.

Every since we've had him, we've assumed he has some sort of vision problem or depth perception problem. He wouldn't cross thresholds, or if the terrain changed from cement to grass or if there was a big crack in the side walk or something he would sit down and scoot. We didn't have any idea that his vision was so bad though. He's been looking at everything and I think he's just amazed. I wear glasses and have very poor vision with them but his vision is even worse than mine. I can't imagine living without the glasses. In fact, I couldn't. The poor little guy. Thank You, God for letting us help him in this way!

So, more pics are coming soon...we got some great shots at the Down syndrome Easter Egg-stravaganza.

The Dickinsons are home and things are going pretty well for them! They still need to raise some money toward their adoption expenses. Also, they are having a shower at FBC Moore SUNDAY, APRIL 19 from 3:00-5:00 p.m. (come and go) in the Atrium.

Thanks for your love, prayers and support!

Blessed be the Name of the Lord!

One photo… :) More to come but I’m working!  



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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Update coming soon.  

Hey all,

There'll be an update coming soon...probably tonight...with a few new pics!
We had a great shower at church on Sunday night.  Will tell more later!

Blessed be the Name of the Lord!

Friday, April 3, 2009

“The Rescue” Quilt…  

We received this AMAZING quilt Wednesday night at choir rehearsal.  The members of the worship ministry got stuff together and a couple of the ladies made it.  We were ASTOUNDED and SPEECHLESS when we saw it.

I’ve got the whole quilt and then broken down the blocks into separate pics so you can see the amazing details.  The choir and others wrote blessings and they are included in the blocks.  The support we have gotten from our friends and church family has been more than overwhelming.  At the end of this post, there are some long-promised pics of our last few days in Ukraine and the trip home.  We hope to get some good shots of all the kids tomorrow at the Down syndrome Easter Egg-stravaganza!



So the whole quilt is about 5’ x 7’ (maybe a little larger)





They got new pics of the kids at a local park while we were gone…





They got pics from the blog…  They chose some of our favorite shots out of the many pics we posted.  Does God even care about what pics end up on a quilt???

























All we can say is WOW.  That’s a great gift!!!


Here’s some pics from our last few days in Ukraine and on the way home…



Yuri and Micah.  Micah LOVED Yuri.


Yuri, Sveta, Matthew, Mary, Chris, Micah

 DSCF2007  Sveta & Matthew


Yuri & Micah


Micah was on his way.  Don’t know where, but he was on his way.



Aiden & Emma


Some new friends… Sasha & Natasha


The last night with our good friends the Loux’s.  We had such a great time on this journey together.  God did some amazingly incredible things in our lives.  We anticipate meeting halfway sometime when we are ALL WELL and having a big get together of some kind.  Can’t wait!!


Micah, our good friend Jamie, Matthew




Yuri & Micah  (Is Micah wearing Matthew’s shirt???)


Some quite time while waiting for Papa to cook breakfast.


This guy is all personality!


Who could resist this face??




This was the very beginning of a LONG and somewhat scary day.  Scary because anything could happen.  ANYTHING!!  We/I like to have plans and know what’s going to take place.  With these two guys, anything could have gone wrong.  Nothing did.  They were GREAT!  They didn’t sleep much (Micah about 2 hours until the last leg then 2 more hours.  Matthew about 1 hour then 2 1/2 hours last leg).  God was SO GRACIOUS TO US!!!  AND WE THANK HIM!!!!!!


Man this guy is funny!


I’ll be sharing some bits of info that we never posted in Ukraine because we weren’t ready to make them public…  Here’s one. 

We are so grateful to God that we have Micah.  He is definitely a challenge and will be a handful, but what a blessing he already is to us and to our family.  His unconditional love goes farther than anything I’ve ever experienced.  Really.  The first day we met him was one of the hardest days of our lives.  When we met him, we were with him for almost 4 hours (which was too long for the first meeting for those of you reading this that will be going to adopt in the future).  He screamed, tried to escape.  Wouldn’t let us touch him.  Spit at us (not accidentally got spit on us…spit AT us).  Only wanted to eat.  Was unruly.

When he left the room for the last time to go back to his quarters, Mary broke down and then I broke down and we pretty much sobbed.  There was no way we could take this child home and make him part of our family.  It wouldn’t be fair to our other 5 kids.  We couldn’t survive it.  On the other hand, we COULD NOT just leave him there.  We could do nothing but pray.  So I prayed and asked God to make is CLEAR to us if this was what He was asking us to do and if it was to give us grace.  I had no doubt in my mind, even as I prayed, that this was what God wanted.  We just weren’t sure if we wanted to or could do it.  We were terrified to be frank.

We began to pray that if God did not want this to happen, then put roadblocks that would prevent it from happening.  We did NOT feel the immediate love for Micah that we had developed for Matthew over the months.  So we didn’t see how we could survive the future with this behavior we had just experienced. 

On the way home from that terrible time in our lives (funny…I just referred to Novograd as home…scary!), George, our facilitator, told us that there was a major problem with adopting Matthew in that there was no abandonment from the father and it could take months to get it.  On the other hand, the people at Romaniv were, by all accounts, going to make it easy for us to adopt Micah.  I was SO CONFUSED.  Why God!?  I was confused, scared, felt very alone, guilty, ashamed…

We went back the next day to see Micah but we had a plan.  We would limit our time with him, begin disciplining the behaviors we didn’t feel were appropriate and we would take food for him.  It was still a difficult visit because it was way longer than we planned, but it was so much better.  This day, we really surrendered to God and accepted His will.  And we were happy about it.   This day, we found out that not only had they found Matthew’s father, but he had already had the legal documents done and Matthew was ours for the taking.  That’s how fast things turned on their ear in Ukraine.  That’s how fast God worked.

So over the next few weeks, God gave us a love and patience for Micah.  Honestly, I can’t imagine my life without him or Matthew.  (Or any of my other kids, of course).  But what I’m saying is, they have not only been grafted in to our family, it’s like they are REALLY ours.  I don’t think I could love them more if we had conceived them and bore them.  That’s God.

So, I told you that we kind of secretly hoped that there would be a roadblock that would stop us from adopting Micah.  Well the day we were to pick him up, there was an official that had to sign off on everything (from the Ministry of Social Defense) who basically was not going to do it.  We were told that we could NOT take him and that appeared to be that because the guy had left town to avoid dealing with it.  I tell you this to express what God had done in our hearts.  This was the road block we had originally hoped for…only now we didn’t want it and wouldn’t accept it.  We prayed and God moved.  I sent out a text to the people I had a number for in Ukraine and asked them to pray that the directors of the institution would let us just take him and then they could deal with the “ministry” later.  I couldn’t imagine that they would do this because everything else had been BY THE BOOK to the LETTER!  But not ten minutes after I sent out the plea for prayer, we were signing the papers and driving off with out sons to go get their passports (which we also got in 1 hour!! But that’s another story).

So…that’s what happened in Romaniv, in our hearts and in God’s heart.   We are SO GRATEFUL to Him for Matthew and Micah.  They are Malones.  Part of the clan.  Praise God.

Blessed Be the Name of the LORD!!!

>>>PS>>>  Wayne & Megan Dickinson go their kids’ visas today and are coming home on SUNDAY at 9:20 p.m.!!!!  Praise God!!!!!!  We can’t wait to see them and meet the new Dickinsons and introduce them to the new Malones!!!  Pray for their trip that it will go smoothly and that the kids will do GREAT!  Also…Wayne will go back to work on Monday…so pray for a QUICK adjustment to the new time his body will be thrown back in to.