Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Building Memories

"Awesome!" That was the most heard word from the kids this past weekend, especially from Lizzie. It felt good to hear that word and to bask in the warmth of kids having summer fun. We went to our "secret" camping site in Colorado with all the kids this weekend. A few years back before kids, Heidi and I scouted for a hidden secluded spot in the Rockies to do some camping. I wanted a rugged 4-wheel drive path in and out and water in the form of a lake or stream. We found both near the Red Feather Lakes area of Colorado...and I get to fly fish!

Heidi mentioned several times this weekend that these are family memories that we are building and how important these times together were for all of us. My friends, Pam & Kevin, reflected recently about their fond memories of family time while camping, too. As I think back, those were my favorite times as a kid. I agree with them all. We bond, love, laugh, learn and enjoy time away from the hectic call of life at home. It's just different than being at home, time like this gives you opportunity to see the things you miss daily and to spend special quality time with your family. I know, that this experience and the ones to come, will teach our kids to value family even more. They are even learning experiences to pass on to their kids one day.

Lizzie pauses to take in the beauty

Nothing better than kids fishing!

...unless, of course, it's Dad fishing!

Two Butterflies!

Marshmellows & Smores over a campfire, NICE!

The Shish-ka-bob Queen!

Shish-ka-bobs and buttered potatoes on the fire, Mmm GOOD!

Hummingbirds at the Trader Store. The next morning a hummingbird & squirrel got into a fight in the tree above our tent. No sleeping in that morning!

Whipping the Parachute Adams fly!

Wading the stream

Gettin' wet

Nice Catch!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Family Photographs

The Rogé family photographs I promised you are in! Yeah! We took the opportunity a couple of weeks back to do the photo shoot while I had all the kids together under one roof. Kudos and credit goes out to our friend, Angie Carman of Carman Photography. She does amazing work! Call her up if you live in Colorado and want a trusty, professional photo shoot.

So, without further adieu, here's the family (oldest to youngest).

The Rogé 9

Mom & Dad








Tuesday, July 20, 2010

UOO 2010 Camp Complete

The 2010 UOO campers have made it safely back to their orphanage. They will rest up there for two weeks and then they go to a summer camp in Crimea. A little birdy tells me that we will see a few of them in Colorado again one day. Whoo-hoo!
Several hours later, Yulia our chaperone reported..."On the plane me and Alyona were talking and she wanted to except Jesus, so we prayed. And SHE WAS A REALLY GOOD GIRL during the trip. :) And for me was very nice to talk to her about God and to find out what she is thinking about Him. She asked: so God is daddy to everybody, to you, to Natasha, to Sasha and other, right? :) And when we were going through the bumping zone some people were really scary, and she asked: everything will be fine? I said: yes, God is holding us. She said: is he under the plane holding us, I said: no, He sent His Angels, who are caring this plane, so everything will be Ok. And she started smile and was excited about our jumps. :) I love to see children's faith. Sometimes it looks naive, but I am sure that God wants from us that we will trust His word so sincerely like children do. When I said God is in control she easy believed it and didn't try to check."
~ Felix ~

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hearing "Daddy!"

Hearing that one word, that single word, from a child gives me a wonderful feeling every single time. Hearing it from Z, melts me. Her cute pronunciation of "Dad-dii" (emphasis on the dii) makes my heart soar. I hear it dozens of times a day and it never gets old. Little does she know, she could have the world from me. But, I hopefully hide it well behind the big "Cheshire Cat" grin on my face every single time.

That being said, Z cries most everyday. Mostly from a harsh word or statement from our guest chaperon staying in our home. I grit my teeth and bear it every time I hold her and console her from the words, "you may think you are part of this family, but you are not" or "you are hanging on by a string. The director said if he gets a bad report from me, he will never sign the documents for your adoption."

So far, I have been the good host, hugging said chaperon every morning and saying "Dobre Ootre", praising her cooking, conversing with her in her limited English or with translation from our kids dozens of times daily. I know I can mend this woman's hard heart. Heidi and I push back hard, showering her with our Christian lifestyle, showing her the love and respect that will bridge the gap. And it's working. Slowly, she is easing up on Z. We've not had an incident in two days. Last night she told me that I'm a good Papa and Heidi is a good Mama to our children and the children are happier for it.

I don't think she is a bad person, just misguided. She certainly doesn't like Z and in the first three weeks she tried to dissuade us from adopting her. There have been stories she has told us, most just typical teen misbehavior. My constant response is that she has done a wonderful job raising these girls (R & Z) and that if Z is as bad as she reports, I'll be happy to take it the rest of the way and adopt her. That usually gets a look of exasperation from her.

So this "Good Papa" just continues on the path of love and understanding with her, showing her the firm-but-fair method of my parenting and discipline. She likes that my kids aren't unruly and disrespectful, that they do what they are told, that they have chores and responsibilities, and that we are doing for them what couldn't be done in Ukraine. She is pleased that Rimma is doing so well in a family, too. Hopefully Rimma's happiness in our family will pave the way for Z's happiness in our family next year.

Until then, I will continue to console and hold a trembling, teary-eyed young lady in the dark silence of her bedroom closet where just she and I and Jesus hear our conversations and prayers.

~ Felix ~

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

UOO 2010 Camp Website

I am finding it extremely difficult to raise 7 kids, work a full-time job, work a part-time gig with the USAF, help run the UOO camp, workout 6 times a week, be a good husband to my Honey, write on the blog about my family, AND blog about the camp (would you like a little cheese with that whine, Felix).

Then, I found out that UOO is running a blog about the camp over on our website. (I found this out when I was asked to contribute to this week's story, hee-hee). So I thought, "why duplicate efforts, I'll just direct everyone over there for the lastest news and goings on!

Whew, that bought me some extra time! However, I bet you want a story about our AMAZING time we are spending with Z!

~ Felix ~

About Us

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Longmont, Colorado, United States
Heidi loves to play sand volleyball, sail and garden. Felix loves to fly at the local aeroclub, sail and fish.