A Planning Retreat

Positive Adoption met for a three day planning retreat last week. Big changes are coming for the website! We have a new name- thewholehouse.org.

Why the changes?

Here at Positive Adoption we are working to build a blog that grows with us. As our own family tree grows, it is our desire that this blog reflect our changing lives and expanding interests.

We view our blog team as a house– a house with different rooms and different things to offer, different purposes that we serve.

The Retreat

The team met at Amerey’s house for lunch to launch the planning retreat, Audrey and her four children, Amerey and her two and me (Kathleen). Audrey and I spent the first fifteen minutes of our ‘meeting’ trying to put up a baby gate. Pretty sure we broke it.

We don’t follow the cultural norm and leave our kids at home when we travel. We bring the whole household.(tweet that) Later that evening after checking into our hotel suite, we packed the room with more family members and ate pizza before we took over the pool area. That’s just how we roll.

What does this have to do with the website?  It got me thinking about how amazing our household is. Even though most of my kids have moved out to begin their own lives, I say the words ‘family gathering’ and whomever can be there shows up. Crammed into a hotel room or splashing around in a tiny hotel pool. We are there. All talking at the same time. Smiling.  Debating. Sharing. Our norm is, if we are going the kids are too. It is a rare occasion when Mama goes somewhere alone, not non existent, just rare. Kids are people too and they learn and grow right alongside us adults.

Each of my family members brings something unique to the table, just as each one of the web family has a gift to bring to the site.

 And His gifts were [varied; He Himself appointed and gave men to us] some to be apostles (special messengers), some prophets (inspired preachers and expounders), some evangelists (preachers of the Gospel, traveling missionaries), some pastors (shepherds of His flock) and teachers.

12 His intention was the perfecting and the full equipping of the saints (His consecrated people), [that they should do] the work of ministering toward building up Christ’s body (the church),

13 [That it might develop] until we all attain oneness in the faith and in the comprehension of the [[a]full and accurate] knowledge of the Son of God, that [we might arrive] at really mature manhood (the completeness of personality which is nothing less than the standard height of Christ’s own perfection), the measure of the stature of the fullness of the Christ and the completeness found in Him.- Ephesian 4: 11-13

Each of us on the web team have a unique perspective.  Each of us have varied gifts and experiences. We each represent a different room in a house and together we are a whole household.( You can read more about The Whole House team  here.)

We want to reassure you that we will continue to blog about the same issues that brought you here– adoption, high-functioning special needs, and education. Those things will still be here. But you will also be able to find blog posts that carry you with us through our day and our thoughts and our walk to be more like Jesus, as we are mothers and wives and homemakers and artists.

 We brainstormed while we ate, at the pool, over multiple cups of coffee, supervising crafts and while kids watched Octonauts or Baby Einstein. I just finished rereading You’re Made for a God-sized Dream by Holley Gerth which inspired this list of questions. Feel free to copy them for your own planning retreat!

What is your God-sized dream for this website and web team?
How do you see it being accomplished?
How can being on this web team bring your God-sized dream to pass?
Why are we doing this?
Why should you do this?
What part of the work is most appealing to you?  What is the area you are most talented in? What is your weakest area?
What do you see the site doing for you?
How much time are you willing to commit to this goal, daily? Weekly? Monthly? Are you willing to be responsible for one day a week?  Would you like to be responsible for a specific area such as social media?
Are you interested in expanding the site?  Changing the name?  Adding categories to fit your personality?  What would you like to add? What would you like to focus on?
What do you think of the idea of podcasting? Videos?  What you be willing to participate in them?
For the team to assemble at the retreat:
Create a one page strategy for your dream. Include what your God-sized dream is, what you specifically want to accomplish, and the steps you’ll take as well as a due date for each one. Keep this strategy in place where you clearly see it.

Just a peek at some retreat ‘events’.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Linking up with Kristin Hill Taylor for Three Word Wednesday! Join us!


Five Minute Friday:: Gift

Hi, thanks for joining me, the Series “Five Things Your Adopted Children Would Like to Tell You” will be back on Monday. If you missed the introduction, you can find it here. Last month, our focus was PLAY and ways to play or use home therapy for free. We’ll have more posts on that in the future, but the theme for the month of June is “Adoption.” Just hitting the pause button here for  Five Minute Friday15881341055_31e56506c3_oMY mother- in -law ins having a lengthy surgery today, correcting a  complication from a previous surgery. My sister is struggling. I am feeling a bit out of sorts and when I feel like this, I just want to give up. this weeks prompt made me stop and think. I have been recording gifts, my thankful list, a habit I started the first time I read Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts and read it again. And I keep listing gifts. As I pray for those I love, I think on those gifts.

  • Watching my son battle it out with  Nerf swords in the front yard with a friend and a brother
  • Sitting by the campfire alone, all leaned back watching the trees sway in the breeze
  • Talking on the back deck with a family fostering to adopt and laughing ( even though the wait is long and they are jumping through fiery hoops)
  • talking to my brother states away and knowing he is concerned and wants to help


Knowing ultimately that God has my best interest at heart and he is in control. he is waiting for me to open the gifts he has already given. He is longing for me to come into His presence.

18 And therefore the Lord [earnestly] waits [expecting, looking, and longing] to be gracious to you; and therefore He lifts Himself up, that He may have mercy on you and show loving-kindness to you. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are all those who [earnestly] wait for Him, who expect and look and long for Him [for His victory, His favor, His love, His peace, His joy, and His matchless, unbroken companionship] Isaiah 30: 16