Follow us with Google Friends below, or subscribe via email over on there on the right...

Sep 30, 2009

Compiling "Three Things Parents Should Teach Their Children"

We had about 90 entries for the Tuesday Blog Hop that was "Three Things Parents Should Teach Their Children."

Unfortunately, only about 3-4 people emailed their list of three to me. With 90 entries, subtracting the usual spam entries, there are probably a good 250+ list items we could compile into a nice book.

I will proof the book, format it and prepare it. Is there anyone who would volunteer to go down that Blog Hop list and compile the blog posts for me? I'll print and ship the volunteer a paperback copy.

It would probably take 2-3 hours to go down the list. Anyone want to help? Email me: brent@brentriggs.com

~ Brent

No School for Abby and Pray for Me Pray for Others


Abby loves to go to church and be with her friends but we will probably have to keep her home for several weeks until the flu passes through. It would mean a long hospital stay for her if she got the pig bug.

Some days being a parent just stinks. Brent and I decided it is just too dangerous for Abby to go to school, church and youth activities right now. Swine flu is blazing through our community, hitting the bigger schools harder, and has now found Abby's school. A girl who lives near us died last week. Heartbreaking for her family and friends and scary for parents of medically fragile children.

The flu is especially dangerous for Abby; best case scenario would mean a long recovery time. Not fun. If she gets sick now, she could miss her trip to Disney.

We are trying to make things fun for all of the kids and to find activities (outdoor and going to friends homes) that Abby can do safely.

Pray for Me... Pray for Others

Brent: Facebook - Twitter . . . . . . . . . . . Michelle: Facebook - Twitter

Landis prays so sweetly for everyone in our entire family.

Our Requests:

Please pray for Abby to be safe from illnesses, for her cancer to be destroyed and for protection from the side effects of the chemo she needs. Abby's teacher at school has been doing a wonderful job teaching Abby. Please pray that she will continue to learn at home.

Please also pray for wisdom for Brent and I. We don't want to limit Abby unnecessarily, but it is hard to find the best balance.

Pray for these folks:

Please pray for two Guatemalan adoptees.

A friend's 4 year old daughter, Myah, has a tumor that is destroying a bone in her leg. At this point her doctor doesn't believe it is cancerous, but it still needs to be removed. Please pray for safety during surgery, healing and that no cancer is found in the tumor.

Many of you prayed for Mateo earlier this year. Mateo has been fighting Leukemia for over a year and has genetic markers that make it much harder to treat. Mateo is finally in remission. Praise God! His doctor still plan on doing a bone marrow transplant, but his remission will help him to have extra time to find a donor.

Please pray for Mateo's healing and that he will find a bone marrow donor soon.

Pray for Me... Pray for Others is where we all get to pray for each other. It is obvious, and we don't pretend otherwise, that we cannot give full attention to every request and comment we receive. This feature on Wednesdays is a time we ask YOU for help praying for others, as they pray for you. Check back a couple of times today for new requests.

Pray for Me... Pray for Others - Instructions:

  1. Use the form below to enter your prayer requests. You must enter an "identity", and put something in at least one of the "pray for me" or "pray for others" in order to be included (links to blogs are not required).
  2. If you link to YOUR blog, please include the following HTML in a post on your blog so that we can create a linked network of prayers (your link will allow others to find us, and be able to participate; make sure you are in HTML mode when pasting this code).

  3. Put out an email or post on your blog and encourage everyone you know to come and join us in prayer.
  4. Look over the list and pray as God leads. Come back and visit the list two or three times today as it will grow all day long.

Remember... if you don't take the time to pray for others, then on what basis can you really expect God to lead others to pray for you? I created this with "community" in mind - pray for you, pray for me, pray for others - so that we are both giving and receiving as a community which is far more spiritually productive than simply wanting everyone to pray on our behalf.

Truth is, many people do not have a community they can ask for prayer. We hope to become that community for them.










Let me know if you have suggestions or questions about Pray for Me... Pray for Others. If this is a blessing to you, please leave a comment and let us all know.


The kids and cousin Hannah holding their Awana youth group materials.

Sep 27, 2009

Three Things Every Parent Should Teach Their Kids

The Blog Hop theme for this coming Monday is "THREE THINGS EVERY PARENT SHOULD TEACH THEIR KIDS".

You don't have to be a parent to participate. Everyone was a kid at some point, so you know important things they should be taught.

To keep from getting alot of the same obvious answers, try to be specific and let's bypass some of the obvious: be honest, love your parents, love God, be kind to others, accept Jesus as your Savior (parents will feel obligated to list whatever is important to their faith).

This is not a list of the MOST IMPORTANT, so do not feel like you must list the highest priority or the obvious, which will end up having the same thing repeated by everyone over and over. Try to be specific and creative. This your three items with a sentence or two explanation.

IF EVERYONE WILL EMAIL THEIR LIST OF THREE THINGS TO ME, I'LL COMPILE THEM INTO A NICE e-BOOK FOR EVERY ONE (free of course) (brent@brentriggs.com)

Get your simple code and instructions here:
http://www.mcklinky.com/blog_hop_code_get.asp


Three Things Every Parent Should Teach Their Kids
  1. Genuinely respect and learn from the elderly.
    Our culture minimizes and dismisses silver hair and experience. We worship youth and physical prowess, relegating the elderly to the status of has-been or burden. Kids should be taught to seek the wisdom, experience and lessons our beloved seasoned citizens have to offer.

  2. The good times will not last forever.
    We have lived in an unprecedented stretch of abundance and prosperity. History shows us unequivocably that the good times will never, and can never, last forever. Yet, we have generations of the young who believe prosperity and ease are their RIGHT, and cannot be taken from them. How dangerously wrong this assumption is.

  3. If the world promotes, teaches and elevates almost exactly the opposite of God.
    Pretty much anything the world and cultures says is right, best, valuable or important you can almost be assured is exactly the opposite of what God says. The world says "Self", God says "selfless". The world says "power, money, fame"; God says "humility, content, serving others." If the worlds proclaims something as truth (about spiritual or emotional matters), you can safely start with assumption that is probably a lie.


MckLinky Blog Hop

Sep 24, 2009

SAMI GONE WILD: Hannah's Hollywood Directing Debut

Sami loves taking pictures. We got her a little inexpensive digital camera a few months ago that also takes videos. Today when we were dumping the memory card, we found a little "treasure" we wanted to share with you. Ladies and gentlemen, without further adieu, may we present...

Almost Teenage Ethiopian Girl With a New Camera Gone Wild:

Sep 23, 2009

Pray for Me Pray for Others

Pray for Me... Pray for Others

Brent: Facebook - Twitter . . . . . . . . . . . Michelle: Facebook - Twitter

Landis prays so sweetly for everyone in our entire family.

Our Requests:

From Michelle:


Abby, one year ago.



It is hard to believe a year ago Abby was malnourished. Wasting away because the food she was eating wouldn't stay down. She was in constant pain and unbelievably tired. They gastric tube that helped to save her life, almost took our daughter away from us.

Today Abby is still not healthy, but her weight is perfect, she is very rarely nauseated, and her pain is easy to relieve. Abby is able to go to school, play long and hard and dance. I am so thankful that God is healing our daughter. It is such a blessing to get to watch her be a little girl, instead of a very sick patient.

Would you join me in praising God for blessing Abby and our family?

Please also pray that Abby would be healed from her cancer, that we would be able to obtain a the second opinion that Abby's doctor is suggesting and for Abby to be free of infection while we are traveling.

Pray for these folks:

Please pray for Sam and Esther, and other children who are in similar situations.





Pray for Me... Pray for Others is where we all get to pray for each other. It is obvious, and we don't pretend otherwise, that we cannot give full attention to every request and comment we receive. This feature on Wednesdays is a time we ask YOU for help praying for others, as they pray for you. Check back a couple of times today for new requests.

Pray for Me... Pray for Others - Instructions:

  1. Use the form below to enter your prayer requests. You must enter an "identity", and put something in at least one of the "pray for me" or "pray for others" in order to be included (links to blogs are not required).
  2. If you link to YOUR blog, please include the following HTML in a post on your blog so that we can create a linked network of prayers (your link will allow others to find us, and be able to participate; make sure you are in HTML mode when pasting this code).

  3. Put out an email or post on your blog and encourage everyone you know to come and join us in prayer.
  4. Look over the list and pray as God leads. Come back and visit the list two or three times today as it will grow all day long.

Remember... if you don't take the time to pray for others, then on what basis can you really expect God to lead others to pray for you? I created this with "community" in mind - pray for you, pray for me, pray for others - so that we are both giving and receiving as a community which is far more spiritually productive than simply wanting everyone to pray on our behalf.

Truth is, many people do not have a community they can ask for prayer. We hope to become that community for them.










Let me know if you have suggestions or questions about Pray for Me... Pray for Others. If this is a blessing to you, please leave a comment and let us all know.

Sep 21, 2009

Blog Hop - Why You Should Read This Blog

The next Blog Hop theme this week is "WHY YOU SHOULD READ MY BLOG".

This theme gives you a chance to tell other readers what your blog is all about, and why you think they should invest the time to read it. Information here...

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Why You Should Read the Riggs Family Blog

The Riggs Family Blog chronicles our family and what we call "opportunities for faith". We have seven children, three are internationally adopted. One of our little ones, Abby, has Leukemia. We engage in daily ministry through teaching, advice, mentoring and writing.

Through the challenges, heartaches, joys, difficulties and thrills of this life, we see each circumstance - good or bad - as an opportunity to have faith, build faith and teach faith. Not a superficial faith that is self-focused on personal prosperity, but a deep lasting faith that permeates every moment and accepts everything in life (mountain tops, valleys and the long winding road) as God's gracious gift meant to transform us, bless us and ultimately, reward us.

Through writing, stories, updates, pictures and videos we hope that our life will help you love life. We pray you'll find the same joy and fulfillment we have by seeing life as an "opportunity for faith".



Brent has three other blogs...

Find out why you would want to read those blogs:



MckLinky Blog Hop

Sep 17, 2009

Wow What a Week




I am so far behind on updating our blog. It has been a jam packed week, that is just getting started. We have celebrated Christian's 18th birthday, 2 family days (adoption celebrations), Abby had her first dance lesson and our three youngest started Awanas. Awanas is bible club that is similar to scouts. Abby, Landis and Hannah were thrilled to say their verses and "win" vests. It was too cute. I guess we did chemo, spinal taps and labwork too, but that is not as fun to write about. :-)

We are going on a surprise/last minute road trip this weekend. I, Michelle, will be driving 10 hours there and 10 hours back with our three youngest. The orphanage director who cared for Hannah for 15 months will be in Missouri for the weekend and many of the older children who were in the orphanage with Hannah (Sami) will be coming too.

Almaz we love you and can't wait to see you!

I will update when I can, but until then I would appreciate your prayers for a safe trip, a wonderful time with friends and for Abby to not get sick or be hospitalized while we are out of town. Thank you so much for praying for our family. God has answered many of your prayers this week.




Posted by Picasa

Sep 14, 2009

Blog Hop - Show Off Your Art ~ 9/14/2009 - Begins 10pm Central

Welcome Blog Hoppers! Thanks for visiting... we hope you enjoy the blog hop this week... can't wait to see your art, or your kids masterpieces.... here's some of mine... BR


This was a drawing I did when I was about 19 of me and
my older brother and twin. That's me on the left.
It's always fun to see how your style and ability changes.
Unfortunately, I get to do VERY LITTLE fine art at this
point in my life, so my skills have probably decreased dramatically.



I created this for our bedroom. It is a wedding
photo with our vows, and nice border. It's a great reminder
of our commitment and promises to each other.




This a photo of Abby on the beach that
I "painted" electronically in Photoshop.


If you like this photo art stuff, here's some more of mine here....


A portrait of a family member, now deceased.


If you are really bored, my whole graphics and art portfolio is here...

Get the blog hop code here...
MckLinky Blog Hop

Spinal Tap, Dance Class and Prayer Request




Today, will be a busy, busy day. This morning (Monday) Abby has an oncology appointment that I am dreading. Abby will get a spinal tap (lumbar puncture), IV chemo and antibiotics and an exam. The chemo that they are injecting into her spinal fluid is needed to treat her cancer, but it can also damage Abby's young brain.

Would you please pray that Abby would be well sedated during the procedure, pain free, and not scared? Also, for wisdom as her doctor makes decisions about what doses chemo to give Abby and for no nausea or discomfort after the procedure.

This will be a long day at the clinic and Abby is usually very tired when it is over. Unfortunately this is also a day that Abby has been excited about for a long time. Monday afternoon is Abby's first dance lesson. Abby missed dance camp this summer, because she was admitted to the hospital with an infection. I am really hoping and praying that Abby is feeling up to going to dance class today. I haven't told her that today is the day, just in case we have to stay home.

They will be running tests, looking for cancer cells in her blood and spinal fluid and making decisions about treatment. I will be breathing a lot easier once today is done.

Thank you so much for praying for Abby.

Sep 11, 2009

Fav Foto Friday

From Michelle:

If you have never seen Kiss the Frog 4 Me blog, you are missing a treat. Beautiful children, beautiful pictures and a Mom who cares deeply for orphans. Sarah hosts a fun blog carnival on Fridays. There is always a weekly theme, but she never cares if you skip the theme and just post a cute picture. She usually keep the list open through Sat, if you want to join the party. It is a wonderful place to meet new friends.

My sweet sister bought Abby some super cute back to school clothes. The fun, feminine clothes and hair bows helped keep the "cute boy" comments to a minimum. I love that. ;-)

I really appreciate all of your advice about Abby's education. You are an incredible group of friends. Thanks for your help. We got the results of Abby's school tests back yesterday. I am still processing the info, but will write about it soon.

Abby and Hannah (Sami)

Abby, Hannah and Landis. Hannah and Landis were excited that
Abby was getting to go to school.

Sep 10, 2009

Abby Wants to Play!

From Michelle:

Make a Wish is granting Abby's wish on October 14th! We will be going to Disney World and meeting Princess Jasmine!

We would love to get to get together with anyone who lives in Central Florida (or happens to be there when we are). We love to meet people who have been praying for Abby. You have all been such a bright spot in the midst of an often painful year. We would love to get to talk to you and meet your wonderful families.

You can email me at "michelle at brentriggs dot com". Our spam filter is annoyingly aggressive. If you don't hear back from me, you can leave your email address on a comment and I will add you to the safe list.







Sep 9, 2009

School Update and Pray for Me Pray for Others

From Michelle:

First thank you for all of your advice about Abby's problems with low white blood cells. We are still searching and praying for an answer.

In the last couple of weeks Abby has learned almost all of the sounds the letters make. We are all excited that she is making progress! The Leapster videos have really made a difference. Thank you so much for praying for Abby's education. And thanks again to our wonderful blog buddies who sent the videos.

Abby still hasn't learned the names of letters and numbers. We have been working on it for quite a while, but I haven't figured out a way to make them stick. I would love to hear any advice on how to help her with this.

Would you please pray for:

Protection for Abby's brain when she gets chemo injected into her spinal fluid next week.

Wisdom as we make decisions about how much to isolate Abby during flu season. So far Abby is doing great, but I (Michelle) am getting a little nervous.

Abby's complaining about hurting more often and has a "mystery" bruise on her back. Would you please pray that Abby's pain to improve?

Abby to be free from any infections.

For Abby's doctors to find the right doses of chemo to give her.

For the remaining cancer cells to be destroyed.

Prayer requests from Abby:

My ouches to go away.

For me to get a baby brother with a little bald head. (I bet she prays for this one a hundred times a day. :-)

I get to go to dance class and school.

For kids who don't have mommies and daddies to get enough food and clean water.

Others:

Please pray for our friends Jill and David . David was in a bike accident and was was paralyzed and needed a assistance breathing. Praise God, he has made a lot of improvement, but he has a long way to go.


Abby, Hannah (Sami) and Landis, when Hannah was first here from Ethiopia. Abby was so proud of her new big sister.


Pray for Me... Pray for Others

Brent: Facebook - Twitter . . . . . . . . . . . Michelle: Facebook - Twitter

Landis prays so sweetly for everyone in our entire family.

Pray for Me... Pray for Others is where we all get to pray for each other. It is obvious, and we don't pretend otherwise, that we cannot give full attention to every request and comment we receive. This feature on Wednesdays is a time we ask YOU for help praying for others, as they pray for you. Check back a couple of times today for new requests.

Pray for Me... Pray for Others - Instructions:

  1. Use the form below to enter your prayer requests. You must enter an "identity", and put something in at least one of the "pray for me" or "pray for others" in order to be included (links to blogs are not required).
  2. If you link to YOUR blog, please include the following HTML in a post on your blog so that we can create a linked network of prayers (your link will allow others to find us, and be able to participate; make sure you are in HTML mode when pasting this code).

  3. Put out an email or post on your blog and encourage everyone you know to come and join us in prayer.
  4. Look over the list and pray as God leads. Come back and visit the list two or three times today as it will grow all day long.

Remember... if you don't take the time to pray for others, then on what basis can you really expect God to lead others to pray for you? I created this with "community" in mind - pray for you, pray for me, pray for others - so that we are both giving and receiving as a community which is far more spiritually productive than simply wanting everyone to pray on our behalf.

Truth is, many people do not have a community they can ask for prayer. We hope to become that community for them.










Let me know if you have suggestions or questions about Pray for Me... Pray for Others. If this is a blessing to you, please leave a comment and let us all know.

Sep 7, 2009

Blog Hop - Remembering 9/11 ~ 9/7/2009 - Begins 10pm Central



This week's Blog Hop theme is "REMEMBERING 9/11".

Though many would like us to forget, there is still an enemy who wants nothing less than our total destruction. Let's honor those who lost their lives on that day, and since then, because of 9/11 by posting our thoughts (where were you that day, what do you recall about it), memories, pics or videos.

On That Day...

I had worked all night and came home to sleep. My wife called about 30 minutes after the first plane hit, and told me "you better turn on the TV." I remember instantly thinking "that's no accident". About :20 minutes after I tuned in, the 2nd plane hit.

The TV anchors were talking about "something has happened in the 1st tower" and I was yelling at the TV "the 1st building collapsed!" It wasn't until several minutes later the news starting reporting that. I recall wondering "how in the world can those news people not see what just happened?"

When the 2nd tower started to go, I said "My God, the 2nd tower is crumbling... all those people are dying right there on TV for the whole world to watch.." (and I didn't say the irreverent "oh my god" that is repeated a thousand times day now. I literally meant, "MY GOD..." speaking to our God).

I hated feeling pessimistic in the following days but I stated to others many times that the country would go through a short period of time demonstrating a bunch of Hollywood "4th of July" patriotism, then it would quickly become the most polarizing issue of our time.

Why? Because as a country, I don't think we (our leadership as a whole, not just a President) has the GUTS, COURAGE and CONVICTIONS to fight a real battle against a real enemy. Sadly, I was right on target with that prediction. In fact, the condemning of America by our own politicians and the demonizing of our culture began much sooner than even I thought it would.

9/11 was politicized by those who hate America, and at every turn Americans were made to look evil and deserving of what happened. OUR OWN MEDIA, POLITICIANS AND LIBERAL ELITISTS were doing this much to the delight of our enemies abroad. Ironically, the only reason Americans could condemn America is because of the freedoms they were stomping on, paid for with someone else's blood.

Since then, we've not seen 9/11 become a battle cry, as it should have. We've seen the media and the current political powers do everything possible to erase 9/11 from our culture and memories. 9/11 is now "volunteer day", supposedly to honor 9/11 which is absurd. If we want to honor 9/11, don't do things to distract from it, MEMORIALIZE it. Of course we won't, because that would mean we have an enemy; and an enemy has a face, a face that must be named and identified. We are unwilling to do that.

I hope you take this week to remember 9/11 and remind yourself that there is an enemy out there who has sworn our total destruction. That enemy has not changed their mind, has not changed their plans, and has only grown stronger in the face of our indecision, lack of resolve and pandering to political correctness. While we accomplished a huge blow to, and setback of them immediately after 9/11, they have won the battle on every front since then: politics, propaganda and a total change of attitude from American leadership.

Remember 9/11 this week. You can be assured that in the future we will be FORCED to remember it again.



MckLinky Blog Hop

Sep 5, 2009

Life BEFORE Cancer and Update on Abby

From Michelle:


Abby (almost 3) and Landis (almost 2) with their Paw Paw.

We have had a yucky week. Not cancer, hospital, major crisis kind of yucky. Just one of those weeks when things keep breaking down and bills keep pouring in. God is without a doubt taking care of us, but watching our little savings get drained is never fun.

Abby was able to go to school this week, but is VERY tired, is hurting and now has a cough that won't quit. It was one of those weeks were you can't forget for a minute that your precious daughter has cancer. She fought hard to do normal kid things during the day, only to fall asleep at the dinner table every night.

We are staying close to home this weekend. Chicken Pox and the flu are sweeping through our area. It is just not worth the risk.

We did get good news from Abby's cardiologist and ENT. Abby only has a slight amount of hearing loss, from the chemo and her heart looks great. The ENT wants to see Abby for hearing tests every 3 months for a while. The cardiologist warned me that the damage can show up as late as 10 years off treatment, so he wants to continue to see Abby. While I appreciate the heads up and will continue to take her to follow up appointments, I am not going to worry for a second about what might happen.

Would you pray for Brent and me? We are making some big decisions. I would love to jump in with both feet, but it would be much wiser to spend some time in prayer. Wise, I am not, so I would love your prayers. ;-)




At least once a week Abby asks me when she will get her "Abby hair" back.
I miss it too sweetheart.



Christmas pictures taken a year and a half before Abby was diagnosed with leukemia. Our Christmas was filled with their sweet laughter.



I love looking at their sweet, innocent expressions, from 2 years ago.
I so hope that we will have a wonderful, pain free Christmas this year.



Abby playing with a gift MeeMaw gave her for her third birthday.
Abby still loves playing with it.



If you look close at this picture, you can see that Abby is getting a blood transfusion. We will always be grateful to the people who donated blood so that Abby could live.

I don't know if it is harder for me to look at pictures of Abby before she got leukemia or when she was the sickest. For Abby's sake I need to remember both who she was before cancer left it's mark on her and how hard she fought to live.

Abby dreams about taking dance lessons, making more friends at school and adopting a baby brother with a little bald head (bald is VERY important :-). I can't make any of those things happen, but I am praying that her dreams come true.

Thank you so much for praying for Abby. Praying not only for the last of the cancer cells that are present in her body to be destroyed, but also for her to have many happy, wonderful childhood experiences, even in the midst of her fight.