I haven’t done this in a while, but I am having an urge for some good old fashioned shallow blogging. I decided I would give my thoughts on the MTV Video Music Awards (VMA’s). I don’t have cable so I always watch them the next day on Sorry for the delay but I am cheap.

  • Dear Lady Gaga-you are lucky you have built up some credibility with huge singles and a gigantic tour because your opening performance of an already underwhelming single was not just weird, but spent many credibility chips.
  • There was no host this year. I read that MTV was turned down by a few people they asked and just decided to go without rather than stretch for someone not great. Not sure what that says when people don’t want to do it because last years ratings were a record…but it says something.
  • Jay-Z and Kanye-You know I loved them and this, but I am a sucker for radio hits and I find this album underwhelming. I know they wanted it to be natural and all-I read the reviews.  Anyway, it was a well designed performance with the flames, smoke, flag and great camera angles as they came the whole way out from backstage, to stage, to runway.
  • I find it interesting that Nicki Minaj is now beating Lil Wayne for hip video awards. I wonder if his ego (or hers for that matter) can keep their label together.
  • People thought Kanye was crazy when he did the whole Taylor Swift thing and said Beyonce had the video of the year, but I found it interesting that even when he won, he admitted that Chris Brown, Busta Rhymes, and Lil Wayne were the best in that category and better than his.
  • I didn’t know if Pitbull would have the guts to keep his verse that says “I got it locked it up by Lindsay Lohan” since she is currently suing him for that line….but he did.
  • I already mentioned that there wasn’t a host, but Kevin Hart did the work of one with the opening monologue and videos but didn’t get paid I am sure
  • It was also interesting to see Cali Swag District in the one video because I haven’t heard or seen them since their fourth member was shot and killed.
  • Because of twitter, I was expecting a lot from a few moments (Gaga, Beyonce’s pregnancy, and Adele). Adele is great and I am not saying she isn’t, but this performance was nothing special. I think people just appreciate that she has a natural hair color that isn’t in a Crayola box and doesn’t use autotune.
  • Justin Bieber could win any award he was up for. I bet his fans would stay up all night and vote 1,000,000 times if he tweeted once to his fans and told them to.
  • They say that people who are taller have more earning potential, but I have to think that if you could dance like Chris Brown your life would be better too. I love that he isn’t happy dancing anymore and wanted to be Peter Pan on cables.
  • Its funny to me that people like Beyonce and Britney are getting lifetime achievement type awards on the last couple award shows I watched. It makes me feel old, but they started so young they both already have two greatest hits albums full of singles.
  • Its also so easy to see why Britney still makes money because she has mastered getting 12 year olds and their mom’s to buy her music which is double the income and easier concert sales.
  • Ok, Lady Gaga stop with the playing a dude thing. You aren’t even good at it. Its like me doing impersonations, it almost seems like something I should laugh at as terrible. You had an hour to change our of your outfit to intro Britney.
  • Its amazing to me that Beyonce was able to keep her pregnancy a secret.  I guess she is good at everything so I shouldn’t be.
  • Dear Tyler the Creator, you were not the Best New Artist. I would say that conservatively you were the 3rd best nominee so cherish that trophy.
  • The last part of this show was boring and included people who aren’t good enough to make a good awards show. It also included Lady Gaga still playing a dude.
  • Lil Wayne closed the show….and you all know how I feel about him. Please DON’T buy his album as it was released this morning at 12am.
  • Adios.


We are asking anyone who wants to invest in us as a family to donate to our adoption fund. Our goal is to raise $10.000 as soon as possible. If every Facebook friend gives $5 we will meet our goal.


From the moment Kristin and I met and started dating we have always talked about our future.  We always knew someday we would get married (2004), be in ministry together (2006), own a home (2007), start a family (2008), and expand that family through adoption (?).

Adoption may come as a surprise to some, but it has been on our hearts both separate and as a couple. We feel the next step for our family is to pursue the adoption process.


This year as Malachi and Canaan grew older we started taking steps to work toward adoption.  We saved money and completed an Ohio home study, which includes background checks, a home profile, and a fire inspection among other things. We have worked with an adoption lawyer from our church to begin the process and become eligible through the court system as well.


The next phases are ones that we want to involve our friends, family and support network of people in. We are pursuing a private adoption, so that means we need to connect with an expecting mother who believes that adoption is the best route for her and her baby.

We have always wanted to have a family that reflects God’s creation and diversity and so we are pursuing adopting a black or bi-racial baby. If you or someone you know has a connection to potential birth mother we would love to have her speak with our attorney, see a more expanded family profile, and answer any questions about the process.

John M. Shady

Adoption Lawyer – Columbus, Ohio

(614) 436-5424

The other major way our friends and family can be involved is in the fundraising process. Even after the thousands of dollars we have already invested this year, the remaining costs are estimated around $13,000.

We thought it would be neat to leverage our personal network in the most common way it exists: Facebook.  Our idea is to ask all of our Facebook friends to personally donate $5 to our adoption fund. We are also continuing to save our own money and put into this account every month. You may be reading this and not have Facebook, or you may want to give more than $5 and that’s ok too. We just think it will be great to see God use our friends and family who want to invest in a very practical, tangible way.

Donations can be sent to:

Mark and Kristin Artrip

Adoption Fund

1961 Dina Ct.

Powell, OH 43065

*Donations are a private gift and are not tax deductible.


Above everything we want to ask for your prayers. We have been warned extensively about the faith walk adoption can be and how easy it is to become overwhelmed or have your hearts broken. We are trusting that God has a child for us in this and are acting in faith on that promise.

Thanks for taking the time to read this and hear our dream. If you have any other questions, or want to contact us personally, we would love to talk more and share our hearts.


Mark, Kristin, Malachi and Canaan Artrip