Kaden Quotes 26-28

Kaden venting:
Kaden: "Sometimes boys look at me and say, 'hi little boy'. 
But I not little.  I tell them, 'I'm a big boy!', and they say, 'oh, hi big boy!'
And I say, 'you right'!"

As were passing a grave yard while driving in the car one day:

Kaden:  "Why we have to be quiet?"
Mom:  "What do you mean?"
Kaden"  "Brittany say we have to be quiet."
Kaden:  "Because people in their tombs."

While watching the wedding of 19 Kids and Counting:

Kaden:  Brittany, my heart so excited.
*breathes heavily*
Kaden: My heart so excited, and I cannot stop it!

Just Like Me

Faces.  Grins.  Smirks. 
Teens sit in groups waiting for a class at a public school to begin. 
Most of these groups could rightly be called "cliques", and those who are not part of one sit alone.
I watch the people around me.
As I do, I realize that, for the first time in my life, I sit among the "popular kids".
Others are around us.
Some are in their own little groups, others sit silently alone.
Oddly, I find no fulfillment in being here.
Instead I find in defrauding. 
The "cool" kids talk disrespectfully.  They curse.  They swear.  They put each other down.
What on earth are they doing?!  I wonder.
But I know.
They are insecure, just like me.
They just express it differently.
When I become insecure or anxious I "hide".  I don't say a word, I avoid people, I put myself down.
They do the opposite. 
They put others down.
They become loud.
Both responses to insecurity are not right, because both stem from fear.
Fear that has been paid for and should be gone.
My anxiety and all my shortcomings were paid for, and need to go. 
When I become anxious and choose to continue to feel fear, I indirectly and unpurposefully say, "What Jesus did is not enough for me."
I don't choose to become afraid or anxious.
But I do choose what I do with those feelings.
I am choosing to accept the price paid for me, and live free - because I am.
I see people differently.
Every teen has some sort of insecurity. 
Everyone is trying to figure something out, and everyone wants to appear "cool" before their peers.
The "cool" kids are insecure - just like me. 
And the cool kids have an answer - just like me.
But it's up to each one of us individually what we will do with it.


Do Life Big (Video)

Going to the beach every year with my cousins, aunts, uncles and family is something we all look forward to more than Christmas!
This year was probably the best year ever, and I loved every minute of it.
It's been a tradition for the past 5ish years that we make a video with all the cousins to play at the end of the week.
This year was no exception!
It was a little different from other years,
but it turned out so well!
It was made up of 8 mini videos all piled together into one.
Do Life Big is one of my two favorites :)

God's Ways Are ALWAYS Best

Mother's Day weekend has long come and gone, but the memories it has left with us will be remembered for a long time to come! 
This year we traveled to TVR - Teen Valley Ranch - a place that holds many memories for me.
My first year there, in 2012, was very bittersweet.
As a family, we were trying to heal from the loss of our two referrals (before Kaden and Bethany) and I was having a very hard time.
That year I honestly didn't enjoy the camp. 
I was waaay too shy to approach any of the few girls my age who were at the camp then, 
so I stuck to the shadows and stayed off by myself or with my parents.
Our last night I climbed up the hill to our cabin in the dark. 
I heard kids shouting in the gym, adults singing in church, and teens talking in the Chalet.
I felt alone, but I wasn't.
I sat quietly in the rocking chair and began to pray.
I could feel God around me as I sat, and my heart began to trust that his ways ARE truly best.
That night I dreamed of an African woman having a baby,
and, as I later found out, that was just about the time Bethany was born. 
God's ways are AWAYS best.
This year I returned to TVR with my family, my entire family including the two African treasures I prayed for that night.
And this year was completely different.
I loved being around my peers this year, and I made friends with some awesome, awesome gals.
I even learned how to say, "Hi, how are you?" In Amharic. (thanks Selba and Mectis!)
This year I went to TVR healed, I am reminded that God's ways are ALWAYS best.