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. Have fun!
Saturday, November 30, 2013
We have almost 100 new and used items: Christmas decorations, new hardback autographed books, doilies, pillows, antiques, etc.
Saturday, November 23, 2013
My parents got married on January 1st of 1966 (1-1-66 for those who like those types of numbers). It has its advantages, places are always decorated nicely for the holiday. On the other hand, many places are closed on the 1st so dining out might need to be delayed. One year, however, was especially difficult because not only was it January 1st, it was a Sunday ("back in the day" establishments were closed one day a week, for those who are too young to know this). Not only was it a Sunday, but my mother was extremely ill so stayed home from church. ("Back in the day" no one missed church, no matter how sick you were so that tells you how sick she was, for those who are too young to figure that out).
My dad is a song leader. He's not just a song leader, but he's also a great communicator. So when he stands up to lead a song, he prefaces it with a story, an anecdote, or whatever comes to mind. This is a good thing. This particular January 1st, his anniversary, at church with his kids while his wife is home sick, he couldn't resist communicating his love for his dear wife. He stood up and shared with everyone in the church that he'd appreciate their prayers as this would be the first anniversary he would spend with his wife in bed. Romantic, huh? He thought so. But half of the congregants' minds immediately went to places they shouldn't go on a Sunday morning and before my dad made it home from church my mom had already received several phone calls from friends who had to ask her about her first anniversary spent in such a manner. Her first words to my dad when we arrived home that day, "What did you say?????" He, the romantic, was clueless.
So, as you can see, I get it naturally. This is why I can write such lovely, romantic notes to the Good Doctor in honor of his birthday which happened to be yesterday (albeit a bit overshadowed by the 50th anniversary of the death of JFK). In case you missed it, this year's message went like this:
It is on this date that I must try to locate my romantic side to write some flowery and gushy birthday message to my sweet-ums who decided to be born on the 22nd of November. I do this even though it goes against everything in me for two reasons: 1. The Good Doctor's love languages is words of affirmation and 2. It's what everyone else does on FB when a spouse is celebrating a birthday.
So, until next year, or Valentine's Day, or Father's Day, or whenever I am next expected to be romantic...
Saturday, November 16, 2013
Last November we had an online auction the weekend after Thanksgiving. It went amazingly well and afterward people kept asking for another one. Some were folks who said they wanted the excuse to clean out basements and attics to donate items to the auction. Others were ready to Christmas shop for a cause again. So, we've listened. We have already started to collect a number of items but my bedroom isn't full of goods yet so we'd love more.
Friends, relatives, blog acquaintances, we'd love your new or gently used items. Homemade goods, gift cards, those gifts you've never used? Toys you wanted to sell or get rid of but never found the time to do so? We'd love to have them to put on our auction.
Auction will be up and running the weekend after Thanksgiving so skip the crowds and check out our listings first. Or come home from shopping, prop your feet up, get on your computer and shop for a cause.
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
'Cause I've been busy working on Victor's Quilt of Many Textures.
It was fun to collect fabrics and ribbons from all of you. They came in snail mail, in church mail, and hand-offs at the front door.
The Good Doctor took the little ones out for an afternoon so I could cut squares. And more squares. And... you got it, more squares.
Another afternoon found Eden and HopeAnne dying felted alpaca wool which had been donated with instructions for adding color using Kool-Aid and Jell-O.
I have to admit, I've never been fond of sewing with specialty fabrics and this quilt has definitely solidified that feeling. For those who sew, just imagine sewing a silk next to a burlap or a satin next to a fleece. No one does these things. Until now. But the reason for this labor of love made it all worthwhile and so much fun.
No rhyme or reason to the placement of the squares. How could I? It was a little of this and a little of that. It has tabs of ribbons along the outside for attaching toys, for feeling, and of course, for eating.
So this is my happy little guy enjoying his quilt for the first time. Yes, it's already been christened with spit-up and yes, that is a pom-pom at his feet. Victor loves to explore noises and believe it or not, kicking his bare feet in crinkly pompoms is definitely his favorite activity to date. Please don't tell his oldest brothers.
And the fun is not over yet. Victor's vision therapist suggested I make bean bags of varying textures, 2 of each, so that when he's older we can play a matching game with textures. So with all of this fabric left over, time for Project for the Visually Impaired, Part 2. But first I need to finish a quilt for Jesse's bed. Preferably before Andrew comes home for Thanksgiving break and needs his quilt back. Don't worry, Jesse, I won't use these textured fabrics.
Saturday, November 9, 2013
Thursday, November 7, 2013
And more letters from friends:
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Tuesday, November 5, 2013
To my dearest Victor Noah King,
What an amazing journey we have been on, and here we are, celebrating the finalization of your adoption. In six months, you and your family have shown me what it means to walk with Christ.
I knew there was a reason I reason I moved out to Utah. I remember praying that my time in Utah would be spent focusing on my faith and finding church before I had moved out here. That's exactly what happened. When I heard from your Mom and Dad that they may possibly be coming to Utah, my heart almost exploded. We all knew that it was going to be a very difficult and trying time, but I was so excited at the chance to be in close proximity to family. I prayed and prayed that they would be the chosen applicant. Prayer answered.
Then we met. I remember seeing your tiny little body, so frail, and weak. I loved you from that moment on. I saw the love exude out of your parents. I saw the pain and hardship when they had to leave your side, as well as your siblings. There was no other option than to love you, pray for you, and be there with you when I could. You were like a magnet I was being pulled towards. I remember the first time I held you, jaw wired shut, I was so nervous. Your parents were in Pennsylvania, and I was still getting familiar with the NICU and how it all works. I held you for 15 minutes. That changed my life. Any worldly problem I had seemed so insignificant while I held your little body, just fighting to survive. I knew God brought me here to love on you and your family during this time. This was my purpose. Victor, God plopped you right in these mountains and showed me how powerful He is, and how our prayers are answered.
Holding you and loving you helped me grow in my faith as much as it helped your little body stabilize and grow. You were miracle after miracle. Prayer answered after prayer answered. The roller coaster of your health and all of our emotions at times seemed overwhelming. But then I would hold you, and would just be, humming you a simple melody. You would stabilize. We would be rocking gently in the chair. It seemed like the world stopped, and we were connected with the Holy Spirit embracing us. It was also during this time that I saw your mother walk a walk of faith that inspired me beyond words. What a strong, loving and Godly woman. She showed me how to trust in God and let Him lead the road for us. What an amazing teacher, wife, mother, and friend.
As you grew stronger, the bond with me and your family grew stronger, as did my relationship with God. Seeing your siblings finally being able to meet you was another huge inspiration. Your health improved so drastically after you had been loved on by your entire family. God was working. He was answering our prayers. You were remembering to breathe. Before I knew it, you were healthy enough to leave, wearing your premie clothes and diapers that seemed ginormous, and only one single tube to help you breathe. I wasn't ready for you and your Mom and Dad to leave. You came by Park City and said good bye to me. I held you for the first time outside of the hospital. You had cheeks on both ends. Your parents and I wept and prayed over you on that beautiful summer day. In the famous words of Alphaba and Glinda, I had been changed for good.
I watched you continue to grow over Facebook and the Kingzoo blog. I watched myself continue to grow in my faith, finding a church, making new friends at church, serving people, and loving on everyone, especially those who need it most (sometimes it's ourselves). We've both been blossoming into the people God wants us to be, Victor. You've shown me the Truth and the Light.
Victor Noah King, you taught me how to truly see God and you opened my heart. I don't know if there is any way to thank you and your family for everything they have done for me. God has worked through you and your family to touch so many people. Being your Aunt has been one of the best blessings I have ever received.
I love you, ya fatty.
Monday, November 4, 2013
In honor of HopeAnne's adoption in 2008, Andrew made this video.
We thought Victor needed one, too. This one by Mariana with a little help from Dad.
We are so blessed and are definitely celebrating!