Rae Update

Here on World Adoption Day I thought I could give you a little update on the little.  This summer we spent a week in the hospital to see if Rae would be a candidate for epilepsy surgery. This was scary because, how do you decided to allow your child to have brain surgery. In addition, to the stay in the hospital, there were many scans and testing.  As the doctor called it – “million dollar testing”.  After all the testing was done, we had to wait for results.

All of Rae’s info for testing was presented before a room of doctors to see if she could have the surgery. There were so many questions. Would we? Would we not? How do you make that decision if it was left to us?

We chose to seek the one who could best help us make the decision – GOD! We put our faith in Him. My prayer was that the decision would be black or white – yes or no – simple.  God has gotten us through all the ups and downs of all of Rae’s needs – why would He not be here for this decision.

It was time to meet with the doctors to see what their recommendations where. God came thru – after meeting with her doctor the decision –  as hard as it was – it was basically made for us. We said yes to the surgery.  Are we happy our daughter has to have surgery, no, but it is the best for her.  Is she happy, no, but she knows it will either eliminate or greatly reduce her seizures.  The surgery is to help save her brain function and to improve her memory.  As she has gotten older, her seizures have increased in amount and frequency.  As we discovered, each seizure was actually doing damage to her already damaged brain.

The surgery will be done at Nationwide Children’s Hospital next month.  We are nervous, but we have so placed our faith in Christ. Whatever happen, He is sovereign and will get us through it all. Our prayer is that God will be glorified through this.

CFE Class of 2017

I guess I am still in denial, but my oldest is a senior in high school now. I have almost successfully homeschooled her since she was in kindergarten. It has been quite a ride. We have been a part a wonderful homeschool community for over 10 years and yesterday we did a photoshoot with her “classmates”. Many she has known since they were wee ones.

The CFE class of 2017 will be the largest one in our homeschool group’s history. Because of this, we decided to do a group photoshoot.  We decided to have a little fun and have a theme – hipster Disney. The girls really enjoyed it with the guys playing along.  We had a wonderful time. It did prove a little hard to get a date – but we finally did it yesterday.  We were missing a couple of their friends, but we worked with who could be there. I had fun shooting these kids, and I let them take charge and do what they wanted.  I laughed so hard at them creating what they wanted. What a fun memory that I will share with my daughter and her friends. I will have editing these pictures. I am also thankful for all of them and the bond they share.


A huge thanks to Orchard House for allowing us run of your property for pictures.


These Faces!

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Hannah and Emily – 2004

I ran across this picture on my computer today, and I posted it on Instagram.  I am missing that little one there, and I cannot wait to see her next week. I can’t wait to hear her stories from Mexico. We have had limited communication with her due to no-WiFi. Thankfully I did hear from her today. I am also looking forward to having all of our family under one roof in little over a week.

Another thing I love about this picture – those face are still the faces I get when I take their pictures now.  It pretty much sums them up.

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Having fun at the National Zoo – 2016



What are you listening to?

Hubby and I are training to run this fall. I am run/walking in the Air Force 10K and hubby is doing the Air Force half-marathon in Dayton.  I have run this race before, and I am excited to do it again.  So with that said, while training I need something to listen to. I know I am weird, but I can’t listen to music while walking/running. I listen to podcasts.  I did that when I trained last time, and usually do when I walk.

I thought I would like to share what I am listening to –

  1. The BigBoo Cast – they have been broadcasting for many years and it’s just two women taking about life. So funny!
  2. Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me – yes, it’s NPR and liberal, but it is funny.
  3. Serial – This was what everyone was listening to last year, so I jumped on the bandwagon. The first season was very intriguing, but the second season not so much.
  4. Deep South Details – This is all southern – all the time.  Love listening to Dana and Kendell and learning about the current southern culture since I live in the north. Bonus they are also Auburn fans.
  5. Front Porch with the Fitzes – So much to say about this – I can’t wait every week for it to come out. So funny with a little bit of Jesus.
  6. Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey – Jamie is a minister’s wife from Texas. She has wonderful conversations with girlfriends. It is fun and encouraging.

Check these out if you are interested in finding new podcasts. What are you listening to?


Oaxaca Update

This is an update we received from the field.
Hello friends and family,
I know it’s been a while since you last heard from me but it has been amazing seeing God’s work through my team. Here’s a big update to catch y’all up on my last couple weeks on the field.
June 10-18th was training week in New York and I got meet my teammates – L, E, A, B, M. Our team has been blessed with a team with strengths and weaknesses that together are united in the Gospel, and the Father will be glorified through this endeavor. We spent our mornings learning practical tools for the Gospel and then we were sent off into the city to practice and learn the culture they would be emerged into this summer!
The week in New York was spent training and equipping us with practical tools for the Gospel. It was awesome to see God’s work for the nations still being accomplished in the states!
July 18-27
The first week in Oaxaca was getting settled in our village and getting to know the people. We are currently living with a Catholic family and hoping to be the light for them.
This past week we had the opportunity to partner with a church who had a basketball camp and VBS while we have the opportunity to teach ESL in the afternoon.
We have made several relationships through the English classes and late night basketball games with some of the young women in the village. It is so amazing that we have been accepted into the village and lifestyle!
Life in the village is hard, and living in such a close corders can be very taxing on the teams unity and personal health. Please pray that our bodies will be healthy and that the team’s morale and unity withhold through the spiritual battle that we are in.
July 27-4th
This week we had the opportunity to meet up with some long term folks for encouragement and rest, it’s been a fun week filled with once in a life time adventures.
We will leave and head into the city for preparation for the rest of the summer. Please pray for safety as we travel.
Thank you for your support and prayers!
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Mexican Hot Chocolate

15 States in 10 Days

It is the beginning of our weird summer.  Last summer we had ALOT of together time being on sabbatical, but this year – not so much.  Almost 2 weeks ago we started out on our road trip adventure.  Our goal was to see all of the parents, get Hannah to Baltimore for her flight home, and Emily to New York to meet her mission team. We were pretty crazy to attempt this, but we did. Our first stop was Mississippi to see my mom. There I was able to get a few a Hannah’s senior (YIKES) pics done on the campus of Miss. State. We also were able to get some good MS BBQ and fried catfish from one of my favorite college restaurants – Little Dooey’s. We also drove down to my hometown and showed the girls where hubby and I met and got married. I also visited the cemetery where my dad is buried. It was a nice to relieve the memories.

Our next stop was Alabama – we were on our way to visit hubby’s mom and Jim.  One exciting thing was having dinner with a friend in Birmingham.We had a great time with her and her daughter.  While there we decided to do something cultural – see the Vulcan! After our visit, we headed on to Anniston. We got to have good time with Rita and Jim visiting and talking with them. We also got to see the chickens and goats. We hoped to see hubby’s sister, but it just didn’t work out on this trip.

Up next was traveling through Georgia to get to South Carolina to have lunch with hubby’s dad. That was a nice visit as well with some good BBQ again.

Next up we gave the girls some options because the next location to be at was Baltimore/DC. We didn’t have a large amount of time so we had to choose one thing we wanted to do in the DC area – they chose the National Zoo. It is a great little zoo, and we got to see pandas! Our time in the DC area was the last time we would be together till July. It was a fun day, but also a little sad at the same time.

The next day we had to put Hannah on a plane back home so she could get ready for Buckeye Girls State. Her event and Emily’s events overlapped with each other, so we had to work it all out.  After leaving her there to fly home, we headed on to NYC.

With our now family of four we picked a few things we wanted to do.  The girls and I went to see Matilda on Broadway. It was so fun to see the show and watch the girls laugh. Sunday was a beautiful day in the city. We headed to out The Met Museum.  It was truly the coolest thing.  So much to see in so little time, or we lost track of time as well as got lost in there. If you are ever in NYC – to the The Met. Also, if you are looking for the best cheesecake, go to the Two Red Hens Bakery – YUM!

After being on the road for just over a week it was time to leave Emily. We left her with her team there, and the little one became an only child for the rest of the week. Just her and her mom and dad for entire week.  Our next stop – Hershey! Who doesn’t love chocolate. It was a nice trip with the little one touring the Hershey Story, making a chocolate bar, and drinking chocolate from around the world.  Although, the little one’s favorite thing may have been getting her bookshelf/table for her Legos from IKEA.

So this trip we went through – Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and back to Ohio – wow what a trip.

My home

my home

Southern BBQ at Little Dooey's

Lunch at Little Dooey’s

Hannah at the Chapel of Memories

senior pictures at Chapel of Memories at MSU

the Vulcan

At the Vulcan or Moon over Homewood



Should I sing the Adele song? I know it has been so long since I have posted, but I just haven’t found the time or been motivated to. We are doing well and ready to take on our summer. I thought last summer was strange with our sabbatical, but this summer may top it. Our family will not be all together for 7 weeks this summer.

This summer Emily will be spending 40 days in Oaxaca, Mexico with the IMB Endeavor program. She will train in NYC for 5 days before flying to Mexico to help the Zapotec people in the mountains of Southern Mexico. She will be sharing the love of Christ with the people as well as encouraging the current believers. God has provided much of the funding for her trip, and we can’t wait to see what God will do through her and the team. Thank you to all who has support her. Please pray for her and her team as the prepare. Pray that her team will bond together and be effective.

Hannah will have a busy summer as well. This summer she will be working on getting her college applications ready to submit this fall. That is her main focus this summer, and I can’t believe it is time for that already.  She is also doing some traveling. She is one of the girls representing Licking Co. American Legion at Buckeye Girls State. She is looking forward to meeting many other girls from all over the state and to participate in a mock government for a week at Mt. Union. She is also getting to go back to Super Summer at Cedarville. It is her 3rd year to go, and it has been one of her highlights of each summer. I’m excited about it as well, because I am going for the first time as well as a family leader. We are also going together on our church’s youth group mission trip as well to Cleveland. I am looking forward to spending these two weeks with Hannah. Hannah is also one of the captains of the tennis team, so she will be busy running some practices before the season starts in August.

Rae’s summer is a little less busy. She is hoping to get to play some tennis and do some swimming. She is only a little excited about getting to go to summer camp. She was accepted to the Flying Horse Farm Camp for Hematology/Oncology Week. She has not been away for a camp like this, but it should be very good for her and very fun. It is not far from where we live, so if there was a problem we would not be far away.

I will try to keep y’all updated on Emily’s trip as well as our other adventures.  Here’s to a great summer!

Merry Christmas

familypicChristmasOur Dear family would like to wish everyone a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year.

It has been a year filled with ups and down in the Dear family, but one thing we do know is that we have been blessed far more than we deserve.  As we get ready to celebrate the birth of our Savior. I am humbled that our Father in Heaven would do this for me. Why would He choose this way to save His people? He sent His Son to be born in a lowly stable far away from the crowds without any fanfare. A Son that was born to die for me.  It is something that is hard to wrap my brain around. For this,  I am SO thankful.  He loves me more than I can ever love Him back. He deserves more praise and glory than I could ever give Him.

May you experience the wonder of Christ’s love for you. O Come Let Us Adore Him! Our Redeemer has Come!

Dogs of the Market

Every week I’m at the market I am amazed at all the dogs and the occasional pig that come to the farmer’s market. I do not think I have seen any felines come to the market.  There are always a lot of families and their kids that come thru the market. I see them come through with cake pops, popcorn, various pastries (including my sweet rolls), honey sticks, green drink, and the occasional veggie. If you are a people watcher, you would enjoy seeing all the people that come each week.

One thing I have been fascinated with is people and their dogs.  There are big dogs and smalls dogs. There are dogs on leashes or in strollers(really??). Some people hold them as they walk through. There are some cute ones and some not so cute.  Some are dressed up for the day with bows or sweaters.  I always love seeing the English bulldogs come through. The dogs are just fun to watch as well as their owners trying to handle them.  The dogs love to greet the other dogs, and I do feel they may carry on some type of conversation in addition to the traditional sniffing of each other.  You will see the really fancy breeds to your run of the mill mutts. Most of the dogs are cordial to each other, but we have seen a couple not so nice.

So come to the market and pick up a cinnamon roll and check out all the pets that come through, or just bring your own.


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These are just a few that came thru this week.

Clothing Options

As many of you know, I have lost a little weight.  While great for my bottom line, not so great on the budget line.  I made it through the summer with some strategic items that I purchased that could carry me into the fall like jeans and some light sweaters.  As I look in my fall/winter closet, there are not many options available to me. I have items in my closet that I had just purchased last year and are not even a year old. All of my jeans that are too big, but I am saving for our service project in December.

Now that I have lost all this weight, there are stores that have been previously unavailable to me. I find myself going into stores that I could not even go into. My hubby is very frightened by this because it has renewed my love for clothes shopping. I am always looking for a great bargain, and I rarely play full price for anything I buy.

While I am rebuilding my wardrobe, I am trying to give my look a fresh update.  I am trying not to buy anything that is grey or black. I am also not getting t-shirts and other items I can just fade or hide in the background in. I have been inspired by a blog that I follow called the Pleated Poppy to get out of the rut of boring clothes and to put  for a little more effort to what I wear.  I am also buying pieces that the girls can potentially borrow or things I can mix and match with other items.

One item I have been wanting, but has just not been in the budget is a lace extender tank.  I look at them in stores, but I just can’t justify paying that price for one.  So with my sewing abilities in hand, I found a tank on clearance and purchased(with a coupon) some cute lace from the fabric store and made my own. No sewing machine was even needed. I am planning on making some more in other colors and for my girls.  I am even planning on repurposing some of my too big for me tees into new shirts with the lace extensions. I hope to make one for some skirts we have as well. I love these extenders because they add a feminine touch to my clothing and some added length that is always good.

This weekend I found the best store called Altar’d State. While many items I would love are out of my budget, I would definitely shop the sale rack. There is a chance I would pay full price if it is some something special. I had seen this store before, but never ventured in because of my previous size.  This time I decided to go in and give it a shot.  I LOVE THIS STORE!!! Not only do they have cute feminine clothes, but they are also a Christian store.  Part of their proceeds go to missions, and they fully fund their employees to do volunteer work in the community.  What is not to love about that! They also have jewelry, shoes, cute purses, and artwork/home decor in their store.  And like Hobby Lobby, they play Christian music in the store.  This is a store I can get behind and support.  It was like a breath of fresh air when I went into the store.

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this is the tank I made with the lace extension – so easy.

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trying to take a full length shot with my cell phone. My top is new but I paired it with a skirt a raided from my daughters closet.  (top – elder-beerman/ tank – kohls/ skirt – old navy/ boots – justfab/ necklace – jcpenney)