"Pick me"! Guest Blog by Daddy

“We’ll take Joey so I guess you guys get Burckhard”, is what the captain of the other team said. Anyone who has ever played a game of kickball would recognize those as the last words before a game starts. If you had ever been picked last, those words might have been dreaded as you went out for recess each day. The way I looked at it, I still got picked and I was “on the team”! I even had a chance of telling my mom that my team won that day when I got home from school, even if that chance was less than 50% since I was on their team. Any of you who know of my athletic talents knew I was more likely to be the commissioner of the church league than to be a star in it! Being picked last still meant I got “picked”.

Can you imagine what it would be like, however, to have your team say they don’t want you in the game? That they feel their chances would be better “playing a man down”, or 4 on 5? That’s what I thought of when Paula started showing me page after page of the beautiful little faces on the Reese’s Rainbow web site about two months ago. For the last eight years we have felt God preparing us for having another “link” added to our family circle. That’s when I had what they called a “minor surgical procedure”, but that’s a topic for another day. Paula just reminded me that I am a guest blogger today, not a novel writer!

Christ chose us, not because we had done anything special or because we could help his team win. (We have read the book, his team does win!) Because he chose us, we feel lead to open our home to another of his children whose biological family felt their team stood a better chance without them. Many people have said they admire us for this adoption journey we have begun, or that they think we are being self-less or benevolent. We, however, feel God has called us to do this as a reminder that he “picked us” when we were “on waivers” and we are now and forever in his family. We can’t not do this. Therefore, we’ve picked Bella!
By…….Daddy aka Kevin

Grace & Spirit Fingers

Last year, Grace was a self-appointed Knights Cheerleader! Here they are doing “spirit fingers.”

Pictured with Grace are — Alyssa, Sissy, Caela, Britt, and Kaisa. The girls were so great with her! Kaisa even gave Grace her own pair of pom poms!

Unfortunately this year, the school did not have a cheerleading squad because there weren’t enough girls. So, Sissy and Alyssa became the boys BB Student Managers.

Suppose it was a good thing after all, because Grace grew a little too plump for her cheerleading outfit. Thank goodness we will have another little girl who will be able to wear it to Knights’ games in the future!

Hank the Cowdog!

Today Sam got to go on a field trip to Velva to see his VERY favorite author John Erickson.
Mr. Erickson writes Sam’s favorite book series–Hank the Cowdog. Mr. Erickson put on a school assembly for the students in Velva. His former 4th grade teacher, Mrs. Anderson, loves Hank almost as much as Sam. So she called the Velva school and asked if she could bring her class out there. Sam, even though he’s a 5th grader, was invited to go on the field trip with the 4th grade class. He was very excited and brought a book to get Mr. Erickson’s autograph.
Last year, every single book report Sam did was on Hank the Cowdog. If you haven’t read any of these books, check them out. They are hilarious!

Long live Hank the Cowdog & Drover too!!!!

Jen & Grace


Grace looks forward to Wednesday nights because that is when her friend Jen takes her to the YMCA. They go swimming and play in the climbing gym. Grace loves it and she loves Jen!

Jen is a student at MSU majoring in special education. She is originally from Montana, but lives here now! Grace eagerly awaits to see Jen’s “orange” truck coming down the street!

We are so thankful for Jen and all she does for Grace. Do you think she can handle two next year?

Adoption Details

Wow! I didn’t anticipate the magnitude of paperwork we would have to complete in order to adopt.

I am currently working on the dossier which is just a fancy name for a bunch of formal, notarized papers that Bella’s country needs to approve our adoption.

We completed the interviews with our Social Worker yesterday. She will take all the information she collected in four two-hour interviews, in addition to our many-paged autobiographies, references, etc., and condense this down into the official Home Study.

Once the home study is done and notarized, it will be mailed to Immigration Services for approval to adopt. Once we get the approval in the form of a letter called the I-171H, we can ship the papers off for translation. We are hoping to ship the whole shebang off by the end of March, if not sooner!

Please continue to pray that God makes the rough spots smooth and that we will be able to bring Bella home in the not-so-distant future.

Endangered………


We are please to announce a newly “endangered”, um…..engaged, couple in our family–Nephew Jason and his fiancee Andrea! Jason is Kevin’s brother Randy & his wife Pat’s youngest child. We are so excited for them and look forward to the big day next summer on August 29th!

Aren’t they just the cutest? And, very successful too — Jason’s just graduating from Orthodontics in Kansas City and Andrea is in Chiropractic school in Minneapolis.

If you know the Burckhard family, we like to celebrate with food, music, and lots of talking! It should be a great celebration and a great place for Bella to meet her LARGE German Catholic family!

Congratulations to the lovely couple!!

You’re My Best Friend…..

Hey, can you hear the tune my playlist’s playing right now? Yeah, it’s “You’re My Best Friend” by Queen.

Perhaps some of you do not know why this song is important to me. Well, a little over 23 years ago Kevin proposed over the radio with this song!

We were getting ready to go out to a movie and were standing in his parents’ kitchen. I reached up to turn off the radio, which was sitting on top of the fridge, and Kevin lunged at my hand and said “Noooooo….”. Okaaaaay, I thought, what’s so important about the radio being on?!?

Then the radio announcer came on and said “The next song goes out to Paula from Kevin who wants her to be his Best Friend Forever.” Kevin then pulled an engagement ring from his front pocket and asked me to marry him. I said “Yes!”

After turning off the radio, we finally headed out to the movie (I don’t even remember which one it was). Wow, can it really be that many years since I said yes–Talk about having a BFF!!