The Houston family would like to announce that we have started the adoption process and are pursuing adopting a boy from Ethiopia!  It is extremely exciting news for us. Adoption is something that has been on our hearts for almost a decade now. Wait, I know what you are thinking…”why does a family with four biological kids want to start adopting an orphan from Ethiopia?” First, our family believes that children are a gift from the Lord. Second, we desire to carry out Jesus’ words to care the orphan. Of course there are many ways to care for orphans, but God has prepared our hearts and our home to find a place for someone who does not have a home of their own.

Let me tell you a little about our process to this point. As you may be aware, we live overseas and this only complicates international adoption. We are using an American adoption agency, and an international (but US certified) HomeStudy agency. It has been a dream to adopt for many years. Every night we are led to pray for our future son that is to live with us. 

God has given us so many blessings throughout the years so we have faith that He will provide in this endeavor as well. We are aware that the running cost of international adoption is $30,000. However, we serve a God who owns the cattle on a thousand hills and $30,000 is not even an afterthought to Him. If you would like to join us in this exciting adventure, we ask two things of you. 1. First and foremost, we plead for your prayers. Pray that God would continue preparing our hearts for our future son; and also that He would begin preparing our son for us. 2. We ask that you would consider joining us in bringing our son home

If the Lord leads you to join us financially please consider giving one of two ways.  The first way is to click on our PayPal "Donate" button on the right side of the page.  You may use any major credit or debit card.  The second way to join us financially is to send a check to one of our partnering churches: Providence Bible Fellowship.  Make the check out to Providence Bible Fellowship, and simply write "Adoption" in the memo line of the check and our beloved friends will make sure it gets to us for our son.  The church address is:

Providence Bible Fellowship
C/O Houstons
7938 Cox Road
West Chester, OH 45069

Pursuing His Own,

The Houstons

Master Bedroom

We recently set up a little photo shoot in our bedroom.  Our Bedroom has become my favorite room in the house, full of light and color.  It gets the perfect amount of light for pictures and lifting one’s spirits.  

My favorite piece of art seen here, use to be in the living room but I moved it here to the bedroom, added a pink tissue paper flower to draw out the pink of the Turkish rug, a family photo and then an ancient church key that I found here in Southeast Turkey.  The twine wrapped jars and yarn flowers on the right were made by and remind me of my sweet friend Tiffany.  I enjoy many a sweet moment with Jesus in this room! 

 Now for the Photo shoot:

Me and my Quiver full! How blessed I am!!!!

Can they Get any cuter?  Especially those yummy little piggies!

And the photo that is most descriptive of our normal state:

Papa Bear, baby bear and the cubs

Our Little Sunshine

This past year has been one of the most difficult of my life if not THE most difficult.  But as the song goes “You are my Sunshine…you make me happy when skies are gray…” This little gal truly brings a bright spot in our days.  Philana Havin Grace : Lover of all God’s Creatures, “Summer” in Kurdish ….our Summer Grace, born in the heat of the summer a year ago.   She is LOUD and oh so Funny, she loves to dance and clap to music, she is independent – insisting on feeding herself even from an itty-bitty age and she loves her momma!

Philana Håvin Grace
Photo complements of: Josh Beachem

I thoroughly enjoyed decorating for her party and some of the décor I made has become a permanent fixture in my living room

The table runner I painted yellow chevron on for her party and recycled in the process as the white runner had some tea stains on it and now the yellow covers it up and gives it new life. 

I also painted the inside of this jar with blue paint and made tissue paper flowers and then wrapped them around a pencil / straw with pipe cleaner.  Flowers don’t really grow in Batman because of the heat so to purchase imported ones is really expensive so I opted for making my own.

Here are some more tissue paper flowers and to fill the jar more economically I sliced lemons instead of the candied almond route.  I set an empty peanut butter jar inside filled with white beans for the flowers to stick out of then lined around the pb jar with lemons. 

The cake: my first attempt at roses

Her first bite of cake:

She liked it so much we later found her eating the crumbs off the ground :) 

Some of our party guests: 

Monster Party

Hudson Carmichael
We pray you desire to live a crucified life, doing humble things joyfully,  that hardness would draw you and not repel you, that you would love to read and learn from scriptures and giants of the faith, that you would love learning languages for the sake of reaching the lost, that you would have experiences that unite you with Christ, that the cross would always be your motivation, attraction and basis for decision making; that you would have patience that cannot be tired out, love that loves in very deed, unto death.  That you would have a willingness to deny self, personal taste and comfort so that others might receive the gospel, that you would have a heart that desires to know Jesus and make Him known among the nations, that you would have a passion for diversity and desire to go where no one else wants to go and do what no one else wants to do so that the Lost may be found and light might shine in darkness.  We pray you will be a warrior on the Lord's battlefield, a soldier that does not ask for or expect ease.  That the great need and a deep sense of responsibility would burn as a steady fire in your soul that neither poor health, lack of encouragement, nor any other difficulty could lessen your sense of call to bring Christ to the perishing millions.  That you would be the first wherever there is a sacrifice to be made, a self-denial to be practiced or an impetus to be given.  That you would serve the Lord as He deserves, give and not count the cost; fight and not heed the wounds; toil and not seek for rest; labor and not ask for any reward save that of knowing that you do the Lord's will.  We pray you would live a crucified live, to walk the road of suffering like Jesus with joy; death to self that life may abound.  May you pour your life out for others my sweet son! We can't wait to see what Jesus does with you!

"Manliness is not mere courage; it is the quality of soul which frankly accepts all conditions in human life, and makes it a point of honor not to be dismayed or wearied by them. " ~ Dean Church

Our Boy turned 4 on the eleventh.  What a crazy, joyous ride these four years have been with him! There was a cake I have been wanting to make for years so we themed his birthday around it and we had a bunch of friendly monsters join us!

Hudson loves adoption and prays everyday that God will send an orphan boy to come live in his room. So I made a bunch of monsters to go in our adopt a monster basket. Hudson prays everyday for a little boy named Milton Dennis who lives in Uganda at Okoa Refuge.  I thought it would be neat to have all the kids pick an orphan from Okoa and name their monster after them so they would remember to pray for them everyday.  We then made adoption certificates and put the picture of the orphan they are praying for on the back.


Named after: Derrick
Top Right is Named after Peace

The monsters were made from scraps I had around the house, stuffed with wool and I put drops of Lavender, Eucalyptus and Mint essential oils on the wool so sleeping with their monsters will help them breath better when their noses are stuffy.  Who knew monsters could be so beneficial! :) 

I wish I would have done the cake orange like the original but oh still tasted good!

When you live overseas there are improvises you have to make because of things you can't find..... like green sugar covered candies that don't cost a we used black beans in the centerpiece instead.

Another improvise was we didn't have black paint so we used crayons and the girls colored in the chevron for our art display.  I started with black sharpie and realized that would take too long and my sharpie wouldn't last that long, plus i wouldn't trust little girls with a permanent marker.  Nevertheless we liked how it turned out and is fun that the girls got to help contribute. 

For Our menu we had:




 Some of our guests with their monsters:
Hudson and Milton

Naomi and Kizza Linda

Samara and Stella

Philana with Samara's monster; Her monster is Kawonawo Hope
If you would like to pray for current orphans or sponsor other children who are awaiting sponsorship click here to find out more.

Hudson, we pray many orphans are blessed and loved as a result of your life and your prayers on their behalf.

The Giving Tree

This year our traditional advent calendar started to fall apart, so until I get a sewing machine to fix it, we had to come up with a back up plan.  Enter our Giving tree.  Here we are hanging ornaments of pictures that represent the stories throughout scripture that point to the promises of the one to come...Emmanuel, God with us.  We also will be hanging ornaments on which we write the gifts we have been given by God that we are thankful for. We have been abundantly blessed and we want to give praise to Jesus this season for all that He has done in us, for us, through us.  

Merry Christmas!

Queen Mother