New life all around

Wow. The last two summers have been the busiest summers of my life. They have both been great. I can’t complain, only feel blessed to be a part of them. I’m referring to the 3 foster kids we had for the summer of 2011

Our family in 2011

and then 2012 was full of traveling, ministering, and of course the birth of my baby girl Isabel. 

A lot went on this summer and I will try to keep this update as short as possible but so much happened that it will be difficult. Before the summer began, I was contacted by CIY (Christ in Youth) and they asked me to be a part of a documentary they were filming called “Becoming Sons and Daughters.” I gladly accepted the offer because of my history with CIY. I grew up going to CIY conferences and was honored to be a part in a film that I knew with which they would do an amazing job. The film is about one of the biggest problems in our world today, ‘fatherlessness’. Here is an excerpt from IMDb…

“Becoming Sons & Daughters”

Every major social problem that plagues our nation today can be traced back to one root cause: Fatherlessness. For instance, 71% of pregnant teenagers live in a fatherless home. Additionally, 85% of young men in prison grew up without a dad. They are not stats, they are desperate for stability.

From small town American to the heart of New York City, ‘Becoming Sons & Daughters’ tells the stories of people who are stepping into the lives of fatherless kids. Through adoption, mentoring, and simply paying attention, these men and women are planting hope and security. They are giving kids a future and helping them become sons and daughters.

The crew (Eric Epperson, MD Neely, Lance ?) all came to Fort Worth and shot some footage and then we went to Tulsa and shot some more footage. Long story short, they did an amazing job on the film and I can’t wait for everyone to see it. I will talk more about the film in a second. On May 1st, 2012 my beautiful daughter was born. I spent the next few weeks at home with the family as much as I could. (I think they call it Paternity leave?) We were enjoying the family time but I was also gearing up for some traveling this summer with CIY to promote the documentary and also to minister to youth at these conferences. I would be attending 3 conferences, 2 in Michigan and 1 in California. The two in Michigan would be by myself and I brought my family with me to the one in California. That’s right, even newborn Isabel. I kissed my family goodbye and headed to Michigan on June 21st. (my birthday) It started out as a lame birthday because I missed my family and was stuck on a plane for several hours but it ended up being amazing because that night I was speaking on stage with some other people and doing my best to minister to others. I got to speak with Jim Johnson who I was familiar with during my time at Ozark Christian College but we never really spoke. I enjoyed my time with him on stage and plus I love the way Canadians say the word ‘about.’ I was also excited about the two michigan conferences because I got to reunite with some really good friends that I hadn’t seen in a while. I’m referring to the Frenchs. Jayson, Janice, and all three of their kids. Jayson was my youth minister when I was a teenager and Janice was always around to be a shining light for any of us teens throughout our drama filled lives. It was a great week and I made so many memories and met some great people. I’m talking to you Curtis. (He was not only my driver from the airport, but he kept me enterained and constantly laughing) It was sad to say goodbye after the two conferences in Michigan but I had to do it. I got to revisit with Jimmy Foreman, a youth sponser from my church as a teen. So many great people that I will not start mentioning all their names because I know I will leave someone out and then I will feel bad. But if I met you in Michigan, this sentence is dedicated to you. I flew home and greeted my family. I was kind of sad because I was about to embark on an 8ohr work week. The only thing keeping me positive was knowing that as soon as that week was over then my family and I would be heading to California.

Hangin with Michael and Ryan in California

I’m tired of the bold font so I’m going back to normal font starting now. Continuing on, I have a new found appreciation for anyone that travels with a newborn. We’ve flown with Dylan before as a young kid but never have we taken a newborn on a plane. It was crazy trying to get through security with a car seat, stroller, and all of our luggage. Plus you add in the fact that we had a baby that ate every 3hrs. We finally got to California and had an amazing time. I’ve been to CIY as a teen but my wife had never got to have the experience of a CIY conference. I met some more amazing people and had the privilege to minister to youth as the week progressed.

This week I got to reunite with Michael DeFazio and Ryan Bennett. They were two of my good friends from high school. Michael and I were very close and I practically lived at his house as a kid. He had a large family and I was very envious of the idea of a large family. Again, we met a bunch of amazing people and I’m not even going to try and mention all of their names. We also enjoyed the southern California weather and were dreading going back to the Texas heat. When we got back it was over 1oo degrees as we expected. I started back at work the next day and Crystal started preparing for Dylan’s upcoming homeschool year while juggling the needs of a newborn. I am also taking classes at Colorado Christian University and working full time so it’s safe to say that the Keith’s are pretty busy. But it’s a good busy. I miss all of the friends from the summer and the great times that my family and I had but now we all have to get back into school and work mode. Hopefully we will get to experience a summer like that next year. At the close of this post I will include several pics from this summer. Make sure you all sign up here to check out the film “Becoming Sons and Daughters” when it is available next spring. I want to thank everyone who had a hand in making this summer possible. My wife and family, crew of documentary (Eric, MD, and Lance), Chase, all of the Frenchs, Jimmy Foreman, Kristina, Becca, Erin, Curtis, Chase, Titus, all the guys that roped my son into dancing at the CIY enrollement, CIY staff for allowing my son and I to dance on stage, all the kids and youth workers that we met this summer, the guy at the airport that almost made us miss our plane because he thought there was a bomb in our carseat case, the nice lady that felt bad for our flight delay and bumped us up to first class tickets, all the hospital staff that helped with the delivery of our baby, the nice director at the hospital that allowed CIY to film Isabel’s birth, thanks to my in-laws for watching our dog while we were gone, and most importantly I thank God for all these amazing opportunities. Enjoy the pictures!

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  1. #1 by Linda Castello on September 28, 2012 - 8:30 am

    I enjoyed reading your account of the summer! What a beautiful family you are! We also enjoyed meeting your grandparents at church recently. May God continue to bless you and your family and provide many opportunities for you to share the Good News with those who need it so desperately.

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