Friday, December 14, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012

Luke 2:11
Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you, he is the messiah, the Lord.

From our house to yours we hope your year was full of health and happiness. The Arnold House was once again a place of change. Our family grew from 6 to 7 members. The good news is that we are finally settling into life in Longview. A big change from sun, wind, and snow to what I call the 3 D’s dark, damp, and drippy. The weather is much more moderate here with sunshine and little rain in the summer. The winter brings rain, rain, and more rain. We do have beautiful trees and sights all around us.

Let us start by saying Graedy has had a huge growth spurt. He is catching up with Brent and surpassed his mother’s height. The year is 9th grade Mark Morris High. He played water polo for the first time and learned what commitment takes when practicing at 5:30 am. Games were often late and up in the Seattle area about 3 hours north. Now he is on the swim team and wow do they swim? He has had to swim 65 laps in 30 minutes or 125 laps 2.5 miles to build endurance. He has embraced the changes with ease. A huge step since change used to be so hard for him. He is constantly engaged with his siblings some times in jest and other times as a tempest. He is a huge help with chores reaching things on high shelves now, hauling the trash can down the hill, and the best to empty the dish washer for his mom. He is turning 15 and driving is right around the corner. Can I say how wonderful it will be to have a chauffeur! Graedy wants to go into engineering at a NW Christian University. This is our Graedy

Elise our dramatic one is now a teenager, 13 years old. She played her first season of volleyball and we had a great time watching her games. In March Elise had the privilege to travel to Ghana to pick up her little sister. She did very well with most of the cultural differences and learned a lot. She learned to cook a couple traditional foods. We were very lucky to stay with another fellow adoptive mother that was living in Ghana while waiting for her daughter’s adoption to be finalized. She visited 4 orphanages, went to street market, saw a huge botanical garden, experience an African Reserve, and saw how many in the rest of world live. She is a great help with chores her specialty is vacuuming and cooking. She is still playing the clarinet, flute, and trying to learn the saxophone. In her spare time she loves to dress her fix up her little sisters, the living Barbie dolls. Her dream is to attend a culinary institute, study in France, and then open a Victorian bed and breakfast with restaurant...

Our Elijah from China is now 11 years old. He is completely at grade level reading and writing after knowing English for less than 5 years. This is a huge accomplishment on his part. He loves math and it just comes to him. He wants to be an accountant in the future. He is a wonderful singer and is in choir at school and tried out for honor choir and made it as well. At church for the Christmas play he will be singing as the INN KEEPER. He and Joy are being to interact and play together more all the time. He is a big help with chores trash duty, pet care attendant, and the maker of the Pbj’s for lunches.

Sneha is now 11 and in 6th grade at Cascade with Elise. She loves school once again with a wonderful staff to help the special needs kids. She gets to swim with school twice weekly and she signs about swimming throughout the week and into the weekend. She takes a new medicine and it has helped with her concentration. She had her first in depth dental treatment under anesthesia and did wonderful and all of her teeth were cleaned, filled, and had sealants applied. She has an excellent medical team here in Longview to help us meet all of her needs. A few of her favorite things are glitter, pink, purple, and candy!

We would like to introduce the newest member of the Arnold family Joyce (Joy) Abena Nyamekye Arnold. We adopted Joy from Tema Ghana Africa. Joy was in the care of nuns from the order of Mother Teresa from the time she was 6 months old. The loving Catholic Priest Father Campbell took interest in her and made sure that she had life saving heart surgery in Accra. Once the Sisters and Father knew her heart was declared healthy they pursued an adoptive family for her through Beacon House in Accra which is owned by a great Italian lady Romana Testa. She provides a home for them in Accra until they are adopted. She advocates for hard to place and special needs children the have been abandoned in Ghana. Joy is very hard of hearing almost deaf. She is bussed daily to the Washington School for the Deaf in Vancouver. Her days are long, we arrive at the bus stop at 5:45am and she returns at 4:45pm. They are amazing- teaching her sign, English, and daily skills.   Joy loves to eat and watch cartoons.  She is learning to be part of a family and to live a life on the go.

As a family we have enjoyed being close to Andrew my brother and his family.  It is fun to visit them just an hour away in a vacation destination on the coast with views of the columbia in their victorian retreat.  The kids have enjoyed getting to know the other cousins.  A fun adventure for us is to go out and explore new restraunts either on the coast or in Vancouver or Portland.  We have ventured to try Lebonese, Korean, Chinese, Indian, Thai, German, and Bosnian cuisine.  We have gone to Longbeach, Cannon Beach, Ecola Beach State Park, and the Portland Rose & Japanese Garden.
Brent once again has the first hard year at new job under his belt. The PUD launched the new website a major project for Brent and the staff. Brent experienced his first kidney stone for a Thanksgiving to remember. We are proud of Brent at his accomplishments at the PUD and hope for many more years to come.

Wishing your family a Merry Christmas remembering the birth of our Lord Jesus. We look to the new year with hope, health, and happiness. We are thankful for the many charities that have blessed our lives Chinese Children Adoption International, Beacon House Ghana, The Sisters of Charity Tema, Ghana, and Father Lou that gave the gift of life saving heart surgery to our Joy.

James 1:12
Blessed is the one who perserveres under trial because having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.

Be faithful in small things because it is in them that your strength lies. Mother Teresa

Monday, November 19, 2012


Joy home from Ghana in March 2012

Gives birth children a look at compassion

Sneha home from India in Nov 2009

The five

Elijah home from China in Feb 2008

The Fab Five

Travel to Ghana changed the heart of Elise
I shudder to think where our family would be without the gift of adoption.  We would be on the road to consumerism and "The American Dream". Did adoption shatter our old dreams, ABSOLUTELY!  Adoption opened our eyes to how the rest of the world lives.  Before we could only imagine, one has to see to be transformed.  Knowing isn't enough for most people, at least it wasn't enough for me.  I needed the images racing through my mind and dreams to change me.  I have seen what early neglect and trauma does to a child.  We can't repair all the damage done,but we can be their for them in their time of need.  That is what orphans need, someone to supply theire needs and be there for them when no one else is. Little things we take for granted brushing our teeth, going to the doctor when we are sick, and having a place to call home with people that will love us forever.   Orphans don't know forever, they have hurt , disappointment , and abandonment. 

Psalm 68:6
God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.

To view others lives who have been changed by adoption please visit:


Saturday, November 3, 2012

Halloween 10/31/2012
Joy -princess

Elijah-Karate Master


Elise's 13th birthday with cousins

Happy 13th Birthday,Elise!!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

This post is rantings of a "now" stay at home mother of  5 children. Every time we move I miss where we have been and the people that have touched our lives.  I hope we can stay put if it is in US, but I still would love to move to India, Africa, or China to serve in missions. I do wish my health were better, it lets me down all the time.  I know that I will not have a heart defect in heaven.  I will be able to run and breath, I will be able to walk and breathe, and who knows maybe I will fly and breathe.  Some times I just want to take a long walk without the risk of not being able to make it home on my own.  When it hits my legs won't work, I become dizzy, and of course I have to be able to breathe to walk home.  And they say we have to wait until it is worse to fix it.  I want to scream could you live like an 80 year in the mind of 42 year old.   I am always so restless, never content with just being.  I read and then I want to travel and do. I want to move some where affordable so I can travel abroad atleast once or twice a year.  I guess ignorance would be bliss, but now I know what it is like and I want to go and do something.  Children are dying everyday from hunger and here I sit, people are  dying without the Gospel and here I sit,  there is work to be done and here I sit......Some people believe that if they have not heard the gospel and that they can still going to heaven without knowing Jesus as savior.  It breaks my heart, I know that without a savior each of deserve hell and the only way to be clean in God's eyes is with the blood of Jesus.

Romans 3:9-11

No One Is Righteous

 What shall we conclude then? Do we have any advantage? Not at all! For we have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin. 1 As it is written:
“There is no one righteous, not even one;  there is no one who understands;
there is no one who seeks God.
Busy yes too busy no.  And so when I can't go I pray and when I can't be more productive I pray.



Matthew 28:18-20

English Standard Version (ESV)

18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”



    Tuesday, October 2, 2012


    John 3:16

    For God So Loved the World

    16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
     Well the first month of school flew by and everyone is glad to be back in a routine.   Sneha loves her school this year and gets to swim twice a week with school.  Graedy is enjoying high school and looking forward to driving soon.  Elijah gets to take Mandarin once a week at school since they have a Chinese teacher from Xian to teach Chinese culture and some language.  Elijah also has one of the starring roles in the Christmas musical at our church.  Joy is adjusting better to family life and  learning what it is all about.  The fits are diminishing , thank goodness!  Graedy is busy with water polo, eating, sleeping, and of course school.  Elise is busy with her instruments and volley ball.

    यूहन्ना 3:16

    16 परमेश्वर को जगत से इतना प्रेम था कि उसने अपने एकमात्र पुत्र को दे दिया, ताकि हर वह आदमी जो उसमें विश्वास रखता है, नष्ट न हो जाये बल्कि उसे अनन्त जीवन मिल जाये।

    Well this is what we have been up to for the last few weeks.  Sneha had her teeth,cleaned,filled, and one pulled under anesthesia. She recovered nicely and we are so glad that is done.

    Elise is not only playing volley ball ,but playing the clarinet, flute, and now the saxophone hoping to be in Jazz band after the first of the year.

    Elise made the volley ball team and she is loving it!
    Graedy playing water polo

    We have to be at practice at 5:30 every week day morning and his game are up by Seattle so on game nights he gets home at 11pm or later.  He loves this sport and he gets to play almost the entire jv game.  Graedy is also in pep band playing the baritone at football games.  Graedy has always liked to be busy and on the go and he definitely is.
    Japanese Garden in Portland

    Sneha looking at all the roses

    Elijah and Joyce


    約翰福音 3:16

    16 「神愛世人,甚至賜下他的獨生子,好讓所有信他的人不至於滅亡,反得永恆的生命,

    Monday, September 10, 2012


    I was going to write a blog post, but I am just out of  time today.

    Tuesday, August 14, 2012

    How can Africa be in such need and we look the other way.........

    Matthew 25:40
    “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

    A deep grieving in my heart for Africa and her people.  So many orphans from Aids and why are we
    running to help them?  Loving our neighbors as ourselves. Do we really?  "I believe the connection happens when you see people as neighbors and not as strangers.  The people of Africa are our neighbors",best said by Melinda Gates. The tsunami of Southeast Asia 150,000 lives lost and the world paid attention and sent help.  It is hard to find an exact number of people that die of aids each year 1.8 million and many of these in Africa.  Child are left to look after children.  The hope of Africa is in her children, but they need guidance.  A recent World Vision study found that only 7 percent of evangelical Christians were willing to give money to help African AIDS patients.   Jesus is found in the least of these.

    Matthew 25:45
    “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’


    Sunday, August 5, 2012

    It has only been 2 days only 2 weeks to go.......

    Missing my boys, but I know they are having so much fun in Colorado.  Wow can those boys eat, cooking is very easy for a couple of weeks.  Sneha and Joy just eat what a make without a lot of comment.  So far they have eaten and swam at the country club, had ice cream out twice.  Tomorrow they are going on a trail ride on horse back which will be lots of fun .  Graedy had a small bout of altitude sickness so I hope the mountains won't affect him tomorrow.  He loves Estes Park and can't wait to go..

    Missing their activity level

    Missing her helping hand

    Joy is a little lost with out her big sister talking about where she is and that flew a way on the plane.  She has been so big to go to bed on her top bunk with a flashlight and Berstain Bears books. No fussing or crying and for that we are very thankful.  She sleeps like a dream  only talks in her sleep a little.

    Sneha even does the fly away to show me they are with Grandma and they flew on a plane.  She is enjoying our hot weather and playing on the swing set quite a bit.

    I used to be so over whelmed with two kids and now I feel like wow, I have no laundry and dishes.  That will be a good break for me to get caught up on things that I just I have time to usually do. All I know this evening is that I will be so glad when they come HOME!!!!

    Wednesday, August 1, 2012

    This is the tasty treat growing in our backyard.  We will have black berry jam, smoothies, and much more of our favorite berry.  They grow like weeds here in the NW.

    Elijah and Joy
    Elijah finished up his 5 hours of testing at the Neuro-psychologist and we are hoping to find out answers at the end of the month.    Joy is a huge period of adjustment and angry at the world.  Her world has been turned upside down.


                                                                           Graedy and Joy

    Sneha  has a good summer. She is not just wondering around the house tearing things out.   She is starting to be able to listen and accomplish small tasks.  She will sit and watch TV.  I have never encouraged a child to watch TV, but she is actually paying attention.  We did not think that this would ever be possible and it is a miracle to see her learning!  She is able to pick out her pj's and put them on.  She will actually sign to go play outside.  She has never told us before what she wanted to do.  This is HUGE!!!  She is able to now climb the hill to the swing set, which she could do before and step off the deck a lone.  We can't wait to see what the next school year holds for her.