Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas 2013

I cut back on the Christmas cards this year.  Waaaaayyy back.  I felt a little guilty; how do you decide who gets cut from the list?  But in a year where we are trying to fundraise, and where I am learning to live more simply, and in a world where Facebook keeps us up-to-date with everyone and anyone, it was time.  So, here's the 2012 family Christmas card for everyone.


Expanding the “King”dom . . .

We recently played a King’s Strings Christmas concert at a county nursing facility.  At the end of our program, we assured the activities director that we would be back.  She was flabbergasted that we’d so quickly agree to return when they can’t pay our usual fee.  John explained that while we do have a set rate to help cover expenses such as lessons, new instruments when the children outgrow them, and upkeep, we also make it a priority to live out James 1:27, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”  And so we will return, not out of obligation or drudgery, but because we have experienced the joy of bringing hope and blessing to dark and lonely places.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

At the beginning of 2012 we were starting to feel the rumblings of God’s call to adopt again.  After several months of prayer and looking at different options, we made the definite decision in July.  We contacted a consultant and by August were beginning the fundraising efforts.  Through King’s Strings CD sales, cookie sales, an online auction, and multiple other efforts, we filed our initial paperwork, finished our home study, had profiles made, and sent several agency applications in the mail.  And now we wait and continue to fundraise.  The rest is in God’s perfect timing and match-making abilities.  He knows that we’re not getting any younger.  We have requested a domestic adoption, under age five.  Other than that, we look forward to being surprised.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

Meanwhile, we are in the college search with Andrew (17) who will be graduating this spring.  He has finally narrowed down his choices and is waiting to see who wins the financial aid game.  We do know that he will be far from home next year and that’s okay.  Depending on the school, he’s looking into cinematography or media communications.  He announced in August that he’s challenging himself  to use these last 180 days of school to make an eternal difference; to not just be known as the guy who ran cross country or the kid who loves Philly sports’ teams, but one who truly cares about others.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

Jesse (16) joined the ranks of those allowed behind the wheel, growing a few more gray hairs on my head (well, actually, they’re mostly on John’s head).  He’s choosing to invest in the lives of younger kids by co-teaching the kindergarten boys on Sunday mornings and by working with a group of middle school boys on Wed. nights.  He’s showing them that he’s not just about being the crazy high school mascot or all-out dodgeball fan (with his brother), but that he also cares about each of them.  He knows that little eyes are watching and modeling, as evidenced by the kindergartner who showed up at church with his hair spiked – just like Jesse’s.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

The theater world is still Mariana’s (14) favorite place to be.  2012 found her as Snoopy in You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown; Gertrude in Seussical; Brigitta in The Sound of Music; Viola in Twelfth Night; and Penny in Hairspray as well as co-star of an educational video for the state of PA.  She knows that many of her actor friends live under the constant stress of knowing where the next job may come from and the loneliness of going from place to place.  We’re often told that she is definitely making a difference and that it’s noticed.   The jump from homeschool to public school came easy to her, quickly making friendships that count.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

Shoun (12) is growing in so many ways, the least of which is stature (in which he has grown several inches this year).  Sometimes it’s hard to imagine that this is just his second Christmas in our home.  He’s learning to think of others first; in the home, at church, in the neighborhood, and on the soccer field.  After just his second season of American soccer, Shoun was voted Most Improved Player on his team. 

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

Isaac (11) just loves people.   He’s quick to ask someone what’s wrong, to offer a back rub, or to care about someone who’s struggling.  His soccer coach mentioned this when telling us about Isaac’s strong leadership on the soccer team this year.  He plays viola with the West Shore Symphony Orchestra and as the only child, he’s certainly making many friends of the adult musicians in the group.  He, too, was in The Sound of Music this summer, playing Kurt.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

Saying she wants to be on stage like her older sister, Eden (8) played Gretl in The Sound of Music this summer.  She is currently playing a lead role in a regional theater’s Christmas show.  She has not given up her love of crafts, though.  This is how she shows her love for others and we accept her handmade gifts knowing it’s in that way that she shares her love for us.  

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

HopeAnne (6) is a bundle of energy and love.  Her very presence spreads joy and smiles.  She is very strong and flexible and has put that to good use this year by participating in gymnastics classes.  She is looking forward to no longer being the baby of the family (or so she says now).

Expanding the “King”dom . . .

As you celebrate Christmas this year, and anticipate all that 2013 holds, it is our prayer that you will spread the joy of Christmas to everyone around you, thereby expanding the Kingdom in your neck of the woods.  It takes each and everyone of us, using the gifts we have been given, to make a difference to the hurting world around us.

Expanding the “King”dom . . .


Merry Christmas!
John, Cindy, Andrew, Jesse, Mariana, Shoun, Isaac, Eden, and HopeAnne King

No comments:

Post a Comment