the goodbyes are the painful part

By addysengrace, bucuresti, christian, family, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments

as our departure gets closer, the reality is setting in. we have been trying to simply enjoy each moment. here are few of my favourite photos. <3 bulgarian day trip fun!

our last community group, including gluten free chocolate cake and a beautiful wooden puzzle of romania with the names of everyone in our group. <3 park fun with good friends.

special dolls and special skirts.

our last sunday. <3

fund raising here we go!

By addysengrace, adoption, america, christian, crafts, family, mercyadoniyah, ministry, romania, travel No Comments

Our Adoption Store

We wil be selling various handmade goods to raise money for our adoption! All donations will go through Lifesong for Orphans, an organization that takes 0% of what you give. We are very excited to start off by offering you these hand-drawn greeting cards by Marie, Addy, and Mercy!

Suggested donation: $3 for 1, $5 for 2, $7 for 3 + postage.

You are {always} welcome to donate more 🙂 . Please email Marie [marie{dot}burtt{at}gmail{dot}com] with which cards you want and how many. Then go to our mySTORY to donate.

birthday trio by Marie

car trio by Mercy

thank you by Marie

forever friends by Marie

leaves duo by Addy

kitty by Mercy

outdoors trio by Marie

kitty and fish duo by Addy

Other ways to help:

  • Share our mySTORY giving page
  • Donate handmade goods for us to sell
  • Buy coffee! 50% of your purchase goes towards our adoption plus 100% of profit goes to orphan care

goodbye autumn, hello christmas

By addysengrace, bucuresti, crafts, family, holidays, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments



77278DF8-4E1A-47D6-A895-06D9C9332970when you want pumpkin purée but they don’t sell it, you buy a gingantic pumpkin, bake it, blend it and freeze it!



80227F76-0715-4568-A997-85C809471FF1pumpkin cookies…pumpkin cake…the possibilities are endless!



52F4C7D0-1B7D-4EB8-A360-6184DBA7B91Dmaking bone broth or turkey soup tends to turn into a science experiment. we like to break open all the bones, rebuild the spinal cord, you get the picture.




AD900DAC-3982-4169-902E-DDB60DC27E79the last of the pumpkin activities. 🙂



234872C9-6310-43DD-B515-86D44C623128random successful “tofu” made from chickpea flour and our awesome thanksgiving veggie turkey!






48A7CF76-20BC-492D-AA73-92B772D8DFC6coffee filter turkeys from here.





E52118F1-5DAC-44AA-BD3A-AFDE38DC2D53you can find tutorials all over the internet but the idea is simple…dribble or drip paint on pieces of paper and scrap it off using a credit card or something similar. after ours dried, we cut out christmas trees, glued them on greeting cards and decorated them with anything and everything.





B64014D1-1826-4F96-B5F4-0AD5C6843F81there is never a reason to not paint paper in my opinion. 😀 seriously though, the craft possibilities are endless. we cut our paper into strips and have numerous crafts planned.






CEB25FF4-780A-46CF-B20C-893EA41AA654one of our crafts using painted paper strips, pretty simple yet fun (inspiration found here).


29A4DA09-2FEE-4063-860C-008D3659CB74we actually bought a legit piece of clay, softened it, shaped it into ornaments, let them dry, pained them, sealed them and made them into gifts. it was a fairly lengthy process that i would put away occasionally. both addy and mercy were happy with how they turned out!


autumn projects

By addysengrace, bucuresti, crafts, family, holidays, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments

as much as i do enjoy autumn crafts, including halloween and thanksgiving…i have to confess that really my goal is to start christmas crafts. :-p but because we need to experience all things, we did a couple autumn crafts and we are going to do a couple thanksgiving crafts. 😀



lego challenges are the best…they are suitable for any age because you can make them easy or hard or in between. you can give your kid a step by step picture (just search on pinterest for lego challenges) or a picture of the finished product or you can simply describe something. for this one, i saw a “mosaic fall tree” floating around, so i showed it to them one time (extra challenge!) and told them to work as a team. this can actually make the project even harder because at 6 and almost 9, they have very different opinions, ha!






this is a great one for the million leaves your children might be collecting or a great reason to go on a treasure hunt and collect leaves. you could twist this project a million different ways. i told them to make “something that resembled a person plus a scenery and tell me a story about it afterward.” both kids enjoyed this one. one of these days i am going to start recording their elaborate stories because they are getting good at creative writing!












we truly had an everything fun filled party on the 31st. halloween is not quite the same holiday here but we enjoy celebrating the non gruesome or freaky version. and my kids love nature so halloween-ish + nature-y themed foods only make sense. we used apple slices (tossed in lemon juice), nut butter, strawberries, raw pumpkin seeds, raw sunflower seeds and goni berries to make monster faces. we used hard boiled eggs (notice ours are small cause they are quail) and sliced black olives to make eyeballs. bananas, coconut powder and skewers made ghosts. we used an eggplant and skewers and grapes to make a huge spider plus plums, toothpicks and raisins to make little spiders. mandarins with celery greens became pumpkins and i can’t remember what else. we also decorated pumpkins but went with painting, glueing and glittering them (pumpkins here aren’t for carving but are very thick walled..think hours of cutting!). plus history needed to be revisited with it being the 500 year anniversary of martin luther mailing his 95 thesis to the church door…so we read, colored and reinacted monk life.






another simple but longer process project…leaves using contact paper. just cut a square and tape it sticky side up and cover it with tissue paper (red, orange, yellow, green) in any way you like then place another piece of contact paper sticky side down to seal it all together. after that trace and cut different fall leaves and tape them to your windows! my 6 year old is magical with scissors so she did most of the cutting. (random fact. when she was little, we noticed giving her scissors and something to cut calmed her and stopped a tantrum!)


stay tuned for a couple (three to be exact) thanksgiving crafts but be more ready for christmas crafts…cause yes we have already started!

no joke. this is currently happening:

where did we go?

By addysengrace, bucuresti, family, mercyadoniyah, ministry, noelantruth, romania, school One Comment



Eesh. Wherever did I go? This might be one of the longer(est) breaks I accidentally took from blogging. So I decided to review the past (gulp!) six+ months and tell you what we did and what I’ve learned.




2017 brought a grand life lesson: under no circumstances should you move right in the middle of the school year. But if you do, you should not commute your kids to their old school.




Unfortunately I would do it all over again. (Aha! I must have been one of THOSE kids!) We moved in March…let me tell you, it was fast. In mid-February we talked a little about the idea of moving, still leaning towards the idea of moving over the summer. We were also attempting to find a better school. We were pursuing something called a “viza de flotant” which is basically when you know someone in the zone you want to be and they loan you their address. Come to find out it is harder than it looks. We connected with one of the directors of a great school right in the center, hoping she could help us understand this confusion. We didn’t know anyone living this this area and for some random reason we looked online at the apartments in this area and we found ours. Our apartment is really a gift from God. It is in the center, five minutes from a metro hub AND an affordable price. Our owner lives in Israel and wanted to get our apartment rented fast. Which is how we went from “talking” about moving during the summer to having the keys to our new place on March 1st.




But this enabled us to enroll Mercy in one of the better schools during Class 0 registration (2 weeks during March). The good schools are hard to get into, and ours is either second or third best school in our sector. Enrolling Mercy during registration allowed up is transfer Addy as a sibling at the end of summer. Basically a lot of beautiful provision, reminding us that our Savior cares about even the little things, when we feel overwhelmed. The hard part is that we finished the school year at their old schools (Mercy needed to finish kindergarten anyway, so Addy finished also). Our spring pretty much went like this – wake up, rush around, leave at 7:10a, drop kids off by 7:50/8:30, go to language class, pick kids up by 12/12:30, get home by 2p, eat lunch, get homework done, prepare for the next day, make and eat dinner, bedtime, repeat, repeat, repeat. I don’t know which one of us was rejoicing the most when school ended on June 16th.




I also learned that stress can wreck havoc on your body. We are holistic beings, there is no doubt. Me physically is connected to me emotionally and me spiritually. And a year and a half ago, my son was taken away from me and it crushed me. Last summer was a dark and long road, and during that summer, I doubted God’s goodness and love for me many, many times. The Lord actually just last week brought me to a scripture verse I hadn’t noticed before. In 1 Kings 17, Elijah proclaims a drought and later in this chapter he visits a widow and asks her to make him some bread. She replies that she is making her last loaf so that she and her son might eat before dying. In verses 13 and 14, Elijah tells her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.’” And she does it, every day. We don’t know for how long but then it says that her son becomes ill and dies. She goes to Elijah and tells him and he goes to the son and he prays for him and he comes back to life. But this is the kicker verse for me. After her son is raised from the dead, she tells Elijah, “Now I know that you are a man of God and that the word of the Lord from your mouth is the truth.”




I read that verse and it kept playing over and over in my head. I don’t think she believed when she was making that bread day after day and yet she obeyed. She obeyed day after day and then at the end she believed. And in my heart I realized that was me last year. I obeyed. I chose to “believe” that my God is good but I didn’t believe. I chose to read my Bible, I chose to pray but I didn’t believe. I don’t know when my moment was but somewhere, at some point, I believed. But my body was very bruised and worn out and I didn’t realize it. I just thought I was dragging. I got a cold in December and I never really stopped being sick from December to March. I had a foggy headache every day, sometimes all day long. My body had weird aches and pains. Long story short, I finally had blood work done and was diagnosed with Adrenal Fatigue. I realize now that the past two years, losing Eisley and then losing Noelan were so much harder on my physically and spiritually and emotionally than I realized.




I should mention that Adrenal Fatigue has been really humbling for me. Somewhere along the way, I guess I put my identity in my abilities. The ability to go to bed at 11p and wake up without an alarm, ready to go at 5am. The ability to go and go and go and never stop. I don’t wait well and I don’t rest well. Well, I didn’t because let me tell you, I have been learning! Just last month, we were blessed with the sweetest short term missionary, Cathy. We didn’t get a lot of “chat time” but we had a few moments and in one of those moments she told me, “I believe God wants us to be rested.” I am still thinking about that. I am not 100% better but I am getting better and I am feeling better. And I am learning what it means to rest and what it means to say no when I can’t do something.




I also learned that we can love and laugh and be a family again. Not surprising, I don’t remember last summer. As in truly there are blank parts. I know we took our yearly road trip and I know we were in crisis mode most of the time. I know Mercy spent 10 days in the hospital and then 6 weeks quarantined. That right there sums up my memories. I look at pictures of last summer and I am stunned. Our faces hurt. You can see loss in our eyes. You can see doubt and pain and confusion. This summer was opposite. We drove to Hungary and saw my cousin and her family. We enjoyed ministry camps (actually we enjoyed and survived ministry camps). We took a road trip and it was a blast and it was without crisis. I found myself comparing pictures, shocked. The joy on the girls face this year versus the pain on their faces last year is drastically different. I found myself daily standing back and realizing that we were laughing and smiling and enjoying each other once again. I found myself realizing that in the midst of crisis I was actually clinging even tighter to Jesus, beating my fists against his chest, asking him, “WHY?!” Yet is keeps going, this story. Because this summer, when the pain began to lift, I found myself left with even bigger areas in my life ready to be filled with joy and peace and happiness. Don’t get me wrong. I miss my son so much. Adoption loss sucks. Yet I also know that I was chosen for a reason to be his mama last year, to hold him and rock him and wipe away his tears, to choose medical procedures that would protect him and to show him true unconditional love. And somewhere along the way, during this summer, still clinging to Jesus, I found myself no longer asking why but instead whispering “thank you” for the opportunity to be Noelan Truth’s mama.




And that is almost the current version of where we are. 😉 The girls started school at a new school. They mostly like it, hahah. My kids are wandering free souls so sometimes the traditional institution of education drives them batty. They take after their mama and wish all things could be learned through art and mess. Yet things really are going ok. Ministry is going well as we prep for Summit 2017, the largest all things included adoption conference in Romania. Please be praying for Christian and I as we are helping with the entire conference plus we will be sharing about adoption loss. Also, praise! My parents are here! My mom arrived Monday and technically my Dad arrives tomorrow (thanks to a certain little event called the World Series and the Dodgers, ha!). We are so blessed to have them here and already we have taken advantage of being able to be run to meetings or appointments child free! They are staying through December and we are so excited!









spring breaking it

By addysengrace, bucuresti, christian, family, holidays, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments

freckles –

weird zucchini –

science –

crafts –

date with mama –

that time it snowed while we were on spring break so mama bought organic gluten/soy/corn free chocolate that costs an arm and a leg –

cute new dresses from grandma ducky –

that time we finished unpacking almost two months after moving (does not include putting things on the walls) –

hair cuts (i think she looks so much like my mama here) –

buns and more buns –

game nights –

lazy mornings –

painting a big and little version of the sun –

come on, it’s obvious (aka strumful cu ochilari = the smurf with glasses) –

the sun came back and the freak winter weather went away –

little girls that buy gifts for their big sisters –

so much lego construction going on –

and lots of dress up too –

exhaustion –

oh you know…christmas?

By addysengrace, bucuresti, christian, family, holidays, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments

so there was this one time…ok fine this happens often…that i find drafts of posts i meant to post but i didn’t and i don’t know why. i think i wanted to write something but i didn’t have time. so i am not going to write anything. this is just parts of our life this past december. enjoy. or don’t. 😉

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easter faire

By addysengrace, bucuresti, family, holidays, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments

nothing as great as free fun within walking distance! the easter faire is right next to us so we walked down and enjoyed a craft, seeing the bunnies, a train ride and a carousel. we ended with the girls deciding to use some of their own savings for “shopping!” all mercy wanted was a “iepuras rosu!!” {red bunny} while addy picked blue and silver earrings. 🐰

signs of spring

By addysengrace, crafts, Family, mercyadoniyah, romania No Comments

the first of march is when we “welcome spring” here in romania. and it was beautiful. 

but now it’s gray and wet. so as we try to stay patient for the beautiful sun we know is coming, we are doing beautiful flower crafts instead. 

this one is simple (although i think working with contact paper is tricky!). all you need is contact paper and collected pieces of flowers. i used all my flowers that i received for (romanian) mother’s day! we have more flowers and we are going to try again this time using paper plates to make “frames.” 

he’s thirty six 

By bucuresti, christian, family, holidays, romania No Comments

this handsome fellow turned thirty-six last month, calm and collect like always. we started his celebration with a date the night before (thanks craig and alie!) that included a movie and a meal, aka a ginormous hamburger. i absolutely love time with this guy. there is never a boring moment and before we know it, the evening is over.

we finished his celebration on his actual birthday with home cooked mexican food and cookie bars (instead of cake).

happy birthday christian! happy birthday daddy!