Saturday, November 29, 2008


Last night 20/20 aired a show about the hard parts of adoption and how it affects both the children and the families. 

I only watched part of the show because honestly I was getting pretty mad, at both 20/20 and the parents on the show.  Then I decided I wanted to watch the rest of it because I felt perhaps I shouldn't judge so harshly and see how they portray the end.

I have written a couple of times about the adoption of older children and how I feel they are the most in need of homes.  I still feel that way.  The sensationalism and fear of what "could happen" comes from shows like this one.

The beginning of the show had a set of parents that adopted 2 older girls from Russia.  The oldest ended up having some issues with grief and loss.  The part that bothered me the most was that after a week home, the older child was having a full blown grief episode and instead of sitting next to, and just being supportive and comforting, they followed her around with a camera and filmed her grief.  Ok, I am no expert on grief support, but you follow me around with a camera and film my grief outbreaks, I might have to break a camera. They started immediately labeling her with an attachment disorder, instead of just realizing that perhaps this little girl just needed someone to be there, hold her, tell her that things would be ok, and put the daggon camera down.

I will be honest with you. If you had followed us around those first few weeks with E, you would have thought we had some issues.  E had some behaviors from being in the orphanage for more than a year that were hard to deal with at first.  That didn't make him broken, or attachment impaired, he was little, and scared and had no way to communicate to us his fears and grief... and very probable anger. 

Adoption... shucks, parenting... is hard.  Our kids do things that we have no idea how to handle, we do the best we can, we love the best we can, we hold them and love them and in some cases ask others for help.

Adopting an older child can be scary, and sometimes down right hard, but that doesn't make them less deserving or less lovable.

E isn't considered and "older" child, but he certainly wasn't an infant and already had some very definite personality traits. He has his own thoughts and his own feelings, and certainly his own opinions... and he still thinks he is the boss.  ;o)

We have been home only a little more than 3 months.  And now if you were to follow us with a camera you would see a totally different kid than he was in ET.  And in another 3 months he will be even more different I am sure. He is loving, and snuggly, and just the other day started spontaneously saying to D and I , "I  uv ooo".  We aren't perfect parents, we haven't always done or acted the right way.  We make mistakes, but we love him.  We hold him, we understand that he will grieve the life he has left.  

I pray that the family in the 20/20 show will somehow be able to heal, be able to help this young lady realize her full potential, and her worth as a human and child of God.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

What a day!

My kids, my grandfather, aunt, brother, mom, itty bitty grandma and dad... gotta love family huh?!   We got up and just sat around watching the Macy's Day Parade, then took a pie to a friend who is stuck in the hospital for the holiday...yuck!... then over to my parents house where we got to just spend time together, the kids played and we ate way too much then went into turkey coma.
My grandfather just turned 90 this year doesn't he look AMAZING!  He is truly an inspiration. What a guy!
Hope you all had a wonderful and blessed holiday!
God Bless

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Thanksgiving is why Fall is my favorite time of the year.  

I think if you go to almost any website, or blog you will find someone talking about the things they are thankful for, and why.  When else during the year do we do this collectively?  Where we actually think about and are reminded to be thankful for the big things ... and the little ones? 
So here is my list of things I am thankful for... not necessarily in order ;o)

1. My faith in my Lord and Savior.  I would not be the person I am now without Him.  
2. My husband.  He is an amazing husband, dad, friend and son.  He is the man I will spend the rest of my life with, because I want to, not just because of vows that we took.  Neither of us are perfect on our own but together we make the perfect pair.
3. Z, my first born.  The child that will always have a special place in my heart because we grew up together.  I think he probably got the short end of the stick on that one since we had to learn together.  He's an amazing young man now and someone I am so proud to call son.
4. S, my sweet girl.  We are the only female's in the house now.  She is amazing.  Texting and all, she truly is one wonderful kid!  She is smart, strong, sometimes head strong ;o), she stands up for others, loves all people, and is not too embarassed to go shopping with mom and even hold hands and offer a hug or a kiss in public.  That, to me is a gift.  I am blessed to call her daughter.
5. N, my wild man.  The child who first showed us that God is bigger than we could have imagined.  He taught us about patience, and hope, and pain, and love, and loss.  He opened a world to us that was completely out of our realm.  He is full of life and love and wants so badly to please.  He has more energy in his little pinky than our household combined.  Our lives will forever be better because we chose to listen to God and love this sweet little boy.
6.E, the boss! ;o)  He has only been home about 3 months, but it seems like forever.  In a good way.  He has taught us to live outside of ourselves.  That life is not to be taken for granted.  That there is blessings to be found even in the midst of chaos and pain.  That we are not worthy, but SO thankful to be his parents.
7. Our parents.  Who have always loved us and supported us even when they didn't agree with us.  Who bring us food, and babysit kids when we are overwhelmed.
8. Our siblings... and siblings in law... LOVE YOU!  Those that are close and those that are too far away.  Oh and D, N wants to know when you are coming back to visit. ;o)
9. I am thankful for my friends. My friends here locally who call to check on us, who show up with food, or a shoulder to cry on and those too far away.
A who has one of the biggest hearts I know.  Thank you for being a friend and a sister in Christ, thank you for allowing me to obsess about stuff and still love me. ;o)  And J who is such an amazing friend and brother to D.
L who tells me like it is and keeps me accountable, and will someday be my inlaw if we have any say about it.  Love you.
My group, who still loves me even though I can't come fellowship any more.  
C, who is the person who's life is so wonderfully parallel to mine, and who God sent to be the person I can discuss kids with, life with, faith, adoption and even politics with.  Who will pray for me and I for her and we know that God hears us. Who understands my joys and pain. Who helped to keep me sane and grounded as we prayed about adopting E. We have not met (YET), but our friendship is forever.
E who is such a HUGE blessing to me. Who changed my life by introducing me to my son, and then became one of my very dearest friends.  She 'get's' me, she understands my dreams and desires for all lost children.  She understands the joys and worries of parenting our children. She listens when I need advice and laughs and shares her joys and concerns with me.  We can talk for an hour on the phone and it seems like only  Can't wait to be able to hug your neck some day... soon.
10. Our church, who supports us and loves us and loves our kids.  Who opened it's doors to us and became our home.  Our Emmaus family that is more of a blessing to us that we could ever even try to express.  God is SO good!
11. I am thankful for accessible medical care, medications that can be easily obtained, the roof over my head, the 2 vehicles in my driveway, the food in my fridge, the warmth in our home, our dogs, my job, coffee in the morning, the right to vote, the freedom to worship, the water to shower with ( I am sure others are happy that I can shower as well), the grocery store up the street, schools and education.

Edited to add:  I am thankful for the internet, that allows me to meet so many amazing a wonderful people.  I have said before that I know the internet can be used for so much ugliness. But it's brought amazing joy and friendships to my life.  Thank you all that read this blog, those that comment and make me smile and those that just read and shake their heads at me ;o)

May you all have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving day!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


Today I was thinking about the boys.

And them being home.  Not just physically but emotionally.

N was only in the orphanage for a total of 4 months, and that was mostly taken up by court junk in ET, but had been with and loved by family prior to that.  Weird how I miss that family when I don't even know them.

But his transition started almost the minute he walked in the door.  It was almost like he walked in and said, "ok, I'm home".  He's been that way ever since.  He wasn't always easy to parent in the beginning, but he was always a love and always knew this was his home.  He still talks about his home in ET, and his family there, but I am not sure how much of it he really remembers.  He was so little and has now been here almost longer than he was there.   I am actually getting ready to prepare his 2 year post placement report.

E, however was in the orphanage for more than a year, and not all that healthy for most of the time.  Then with coming here and dealing with hospital stays, and surgeries and stressed out  He is now "home" a few short months after arriving.  He loves his home, he claims it as his... and of course he's the boss.  He has his own chair, his own bed with his own blanket he loves his brothers and sisters.  He knows who nannie is and when he sees bugs he knows which cousin loves them.  ;o)  This is a kid that been through so much pain, and yet is still a snuggle bunny.  He is the kid that puts his face in your neck and wraps his arms around you and squeezes.

N is the guy that out of the blue says "Mom? I love you!" And will run to me for kisses.

These boys who didn't have a home, didn't have a future, had lost what little security they had... and are now thriving and loving and belonging here.  At Home.

On this thanksgiving week I am thankful to be a mom.  To be a part of this journey to bring them home.  I am thankful that God provided so that we could bring them home.  That He planted the seed to make us realize that we needed them as much as they needed us.  That He chose us to grow in ways that we would never have grown without them.   Ten years ago we wouldn't have been prepared for this.  God's timing is perfect...although some days I still think we are

I am thankful that they have a home and love and security, now and forever. My heart hurts for those that don't.  Those children not celebrating (even if they don't know that Thanksgiving is) those kids that watch others leave and go to homes with new families.  Those that have no hope in their hearts.

Will you pray with me for those kids?  Maybe you can sponsor an AHOPE kid.  I can tell you it's rewarding, and I have even met some of them.  They are amazing.  But be careful, you may fall in love. ;o)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Who's the boss?

Here's the scenario:
N is doing something that E doesn't like.
E says with authority and pointing finger, "STOP!"
N keeps doing it.
E says again with more force "STOP!"
I say: "Hey!  You are not the boss here, mommy is"
E looks at me and says: "No!  E the boss."
I said: "You are the littlest you don't get to be the boss"
E says:"No. E the boss"

oiy... I think we are in for some fun. ;o)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

one more...

Just had to share a "Loving my husband" moment...
Tonight he was chosen to read a book to E, as i had read one to N while E was bathing.
The book he picked was called "If I Were Your Momma".  It incorporates a story and then a lullaby with new words to familiar lullaby tunes.  
Now if you know my husband the term 'make a joyful noise ' was written for him.  But God bless him, he sang each lullaby and did a pretty darn good job of it.
He's a good daddy.
On this week of being extra thankful... I am thankful for him!!!


ok, so this is a follow up to the 'technology' post.

I began to think about what Aaron said about remembering us having this conversation in the van on the way to the embassy.  See, we were only with Aaron and his family for a few short hours. So the fact that he remembers this conversation has me thinking that perhaps WE are the ones with the obsession over the phone and not S.

When we first got her the phone we were pretty strict on when she could use it.  It was really only because she was starting middle school and we wanted a way to be able to 'keep track' of her when she went out.  Well of course those rules lapsed a bit and she was using more and more.  We did have to keep a limit on the minutes she used to speak because it's a family plan and she was using the family minutes.  

Then came her 13th birthday and daddy wanted her to have texting. I was against it from the beginning, I knew it would end up to be an issue.  But we tried it.  I hate to say I told you so, but I told you  And now we have 14 - 17k texts a month.  

I have been reading on some other blogs about the things they do, and don't with their kids.  Like no tv, and no cell phones, and no hand held computer games. ( I TOTALLY respect these choices by the way!!)

But I think to myself that we have truly spoiled our kids  Although, perhaps it's not the kids that are spoiled but us parents (as in D and I)  that don't really do anything about it because we enjoy these comforts as well. Even though we can't really afford them at the moment.  I mean shucks I walked out of the house the other day without my cell phone and was almost panicked.  sheesh, am I mess or what?

So what do I do?  

We still have family time, we still turn off the tv every night at dinner and have dinner at least 5 out of 7 nights together as a family.  We try to sit with the kids as they watch their shows, and I try to only have Disney or Noggin on so that we can interact with them during the shows.  LOL listen to me justify. ;o) 

Not really sure where to go with this thought process... perhaps some cutting back and soul searching myself is in order. ;o)

Sunday Sunday

This has been a lazy weekend for me.  I have a nasty winter cold, and have not been feeling like doing much. Didn't even get to church this morning. ;o(  We did have an appointment yesterday afternoon to get family photo's done though so I did get out for that.  I can't WAIT to see how they turned out! ;o)  The boys were cooperative as well.

Here are some pics of E this morning as he was getting ready to go with daddy and S to help Grandma in the
 yard.  Check out the boots!  He wasn't really sure about wearing them at first, he has bity feet and is still
 gaining strength in his legs so at first they were heavy.  
It wasn't long though before he was chasing N.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

S has a party

S got her favorite present CASH!  I see a shopping trip coming.;o)
This is half the kids that were there ;o)  A Motley Crew huh?
S and her cake

The mom of her friend runs a bakery.  She made this cake for S as a gift.  Isn't it beautiful?!!
See boys love to play with toys.

So since her birthday was on Monday we had S's friend party last night, Friday.  
We almost always have it at the house because she al
ays wants at least 15 people.
So once every year we have our house over run with teenagers.  
And the funny thing is that they are all pretty good kids.  They are mostly respectful, at least to our  Call us mom and dad and play with the little boys.  
And as you will see in the pics below some times play with the little boy toys.  
Funny thing is that at one point S came into the room where we were and was texting someone.  I asked her who she could possibly be texting since all of her friends were here, and she said she was texting someone AT the party.  OIY!  ;o)

Thursday, November 20, 2008


ok this is bad parent confession time.
S has a cell phone.  And we have an unlimited text plan.
Do you see where this is going?

She has her phone in the morning before school, and then after school until 9pm.  She is not to text during school, and she doesn't text during dinner. 
So I would like to give you a chance to make a wild guess as to how many texts she makes in a month.
Go ahead... try it.
5000?  Nope
10000? Nope
14000?  Yep this last month and that is down 3000 because we told her she had a limit and would lose it if she didn't stop.

Is that completely nuts???!!!  One month she had 17500 in the month!  phew, can't even fathom how that happens.

Yes we think so too.  We have taken it from her again.  I mean for heavens sake, do the math. Ok, so I can't really do that math in my head but good grief.  She is going to arthritis in her thumbs  by the time she's 17. ;o)

Today she started to try to have an argument with me via text.  I had to catch myself and told her that if she wanted to talk to me she would have to call me.  Gosh, what a concept.  Speak on the phone for real with someone? ok I am chuckling at myself on this one, cause I talk to my very best friends online all the time.  ;o)  But this is different right? ;o)


Today was Thanksgiving at the boy's school.  Daddy went to lunch with them. 
They had so much fun.
I got to school to pick them up after work and the first thing E says to me
 is "Hat!" "Hat!"  We found his hat and insisted on putting it immediately. ;o)
Look how cute he is!

We found out that he will have no issues at Thanksgiving dinner.  He loves turkey, mashed potatoes, and even cranberry sauce!  Funny thing is that he doesn't like gravy on things. 

Another blessing is that N was great today.  We have really worked on trying to focus on his good moments.  We are also trying to help him remember that he is a very important big brother.  It seems to be working. And he even napped at nap time... THAT is
Here he is in his great little hat.
Gotta love token daycare crafts... aren't they the cutest kids you have ever seen?!  

uh oh, I think the honeymoon is over

I found out last night that E cried for a while after I left him yesterday.

As I said before he seemed fine when I got there to get him and his teachers gush over him. But then N told me last night that he cried, and cried and cried. And then snatched a toy from Poor kid.

This morning on the way to school he began saying "E, no school. E no school." I told him he had to go, and that he would be with N.
He went in ok, and even went up to a littler kid in the room, cupped his face and smiled at him. SO sweet.

He gave me a kiss and hug good bye, and seemed ok.

We shall see, but perhaps the novelty is wearing off? ;o)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Day 3

Well, each day is getting better.

E seems to be fitting in with the class just fine, and he almost seems to be growing.  Not really physically, lol it's only been 3 days, but he's speaking more, and trying to communicate so much more.  

He tries so hard to tell us how his day is going and what he did.  Through out the night he will say little phrases like:
Mommy Chicken school!
Water School
Cars school
E, cookie School.

So cute... almost full sentences.

I really miss being home with them.

Perhaps some day!

It's here!!!

I LOVE love love Il Divo.  I know Simon Cowell found them... but man... have you listened to them?

Almost every night as I am going to sleep I put my ipod in and listen to something from their Christmas album.  Crazy I know, but those voices and those songs ... man, love it.

So their new album came out this week and my daddy got it for me.  Thank you da!  It's Il Divo "The Promise".

Just so you can get a taste, they performed Amazing Grace from this new album on Oprah not too long ago. Check it out  

Man, those faces...those voices and then the bag pipes!  Doesn't get a whole lot better than that!!!

Now I have something new to listen to at night. ;o)

Washington DC, May 11th... I'll be there!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Day 2

So day 2 was just as good as day 1.  He went in no problem, was happy to have his own sheet and blanket for nap time.  And was eating cookies and drinking juice when I got there to pick him up.

And I think I will stop posting about how great N is because it seems as though every time I do that he decides to jump off the deep end and forget what it means to cooperate with anything.

He's had SO much transition and so much change with E being home that I am sure it has something to do with it.  But at times he's almost un-managable and we get at least one phone call from the school a day.  Poor little guy.  We are trying to figure out ways to help him adjust. 

Any ideas would be great. ;o)

He seems to go in spurts, he will go a while with being great and then go a whole week where we think he needs a straight TOTALLY kidding!!!  ;o)

He's such a sweet kid and he wants to do good.  He just has other needs that we have to figure out. ;o) 

E has gotten so much attention with his illness and surgeries and now he's in school and sweet and good and the teachers all love him.  So again N gets pushed aside.  We are trying not to have him feel that way... hard... but so far I am not sure it's working.

This too shall pass. ;o)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Just cause I have lots of pics to share....

S during a Glamour Shots day ;o)

ok we have an apple computer and it does funny things to pictures... we die laughing every time we play with it... perhaps we are slightly unhinged?
S and daddy... and a little E

S and I looking 'normal'

I have more pics... I told you S was a camera hound...LOL

More S birthday

So S wanted White on White Nike's and a cross within a heart necklace.

She also wanted white cake with whipped Chocolate icing.

And dinner at Cheese Burger in Paradise.
We did cake and ice cream last night with extended family.

And then dinner out tonight on her actual birthday. 

ok this is E waiting for the cake to finish.  He helped me make it.

Here is S hamming it up ... cause she's good at it! ;o)


Exactly 15 yrs ago with Daddy and her Beloved Poppa
Her first Birthday!

Christmas... she's about 4 here

Today my sweet S turned 15 yrs old.  
Do you know what that means?  Next year she will be getting her drivers license!  HELP!
Good grief I cannot imagine her driving a car.  She's my sweet little S.  My little roly poly, wanna squeeze those little cheeks... baby.  
She was my ham until N came  If ever there is a camera around, she is in front of it. ;o) She loves people, and kids, and animals and old  She sees a wrong and wants to fix it, she sees hurting and she wants to comfort, she sees a purse and wants to buy
She's funny and smart and a joy.  
She's also 15 so she's sassy, argumentative and moody.  
She's the whole package.  She's not only beautiful in the outside but on the inside.
She's my only girl and I love her to PIECES!!!

I found some old pics of her... I had to take pics of pics because our scanner doesn't work.

First day update

So we are home now, and he's zonked!

He had a great time, he was a good boy, followed the rules, played outside and went potty when he was supposed to.

He had a bit of an issue with lunch, but N fed him...cause he's a great big brother!...and then he fell asleep before I could get there. 

He was happy to see me, but not like I had abandoned him... but like, I had a good day today mom, it's good to see you ;o)


First Day

ok, so I write this with mixed

This morning E got up asking about school.

Then we got ready, got to school and I said to him.

"Today is the day you get to stay at school with N."

He said "YAY!"

Into school we went. Straight back to his room.

He is in the same room as N.

He immedicately took off his jacket, and proceeded to play.

He did take a moment to give me a kiss good bye and tell me he loves me.... then off to play again.

He didn't even bat an eye.

So he was either very well prepared, after having come with me every day to drop off and pick up N... or I need to work on attachment

Actually he was very excited to go. On Friday he woke up asking when he was going to school. I showed him on the calendar the day he was going to school, so he showed everyone else who walked into the house when he was going.

And as long as N is there, E is happy. It doesn't matter where that happens to be.

I am sad..but he's And I guess that's all that counts.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Thoughts on life....

Friday 3 local senior boys were killed in a car accident.  1 of them the brother of one of S's classmate's and the other 2 friends of her boyfriend's family.

They were driving too fast in the rain and lost control of their car.  Senseless and sad.  

Tomorrow is S's birthday, she will be 15.  It's also the 1 year anniversary of the death of poppa, D's dad.
He had been very sick for a long time but this was still a surprise for us all, especially being on S's birthday.

S often said that poppa was her hero because though he was sick for so long he still got up and tried to deal with life and live it ...even in his pain.  He had COPD and congestive heart failure. He remodeled a kitchen, built a deck and got his house in order.

He was on oxygen for the last several years of his life, and his body just could no longer sustain him.

The night before her birthday S said she prayed and prayed that poppa would not die on her birthday. That he would live at least through that day.  

We got the call at 6ish in the morning for D to get to the hospital.  I immediately went to to Z's room and we began to pray together.  I could not bring myself to go into her room and wake her up with this news.  Because it was early and she is a teenager, she of course was still sleeping.  We called some friends and my brother and they came to the house to sit just in case she and N awoke then Z and I went up to the hospital.  Poppa had passed just shortly after the call came for D to get there.

I had no idea what to say to S.  How do you explain this?  What was I to say to her? Happy birthday and oh by he way poppa has passed?  How do I explain that her prayers were not answered as she wanted them to be?  

I prayed and prayed... I asked God what he was thinking.  I asked why it had to be this day. Why could he not have waited for 1 more day... or even the END of the day??

I am not sure I have gotten an answer that makes it better.  But during the week preparing for his funeral and consoling, S and I were talking... I said to her...

I know you prayed, and I know you feel like God didn't answer your prayers. What I do know is that God heard you.  I think what he wants you to know is that he heard you, and he feels your pain. And he is saying to you 'I know you hurt baby, and I hurt for you, but your poppa needed to come home, he needed to be here more than you needed him there. He's healed now and he's whole and you now have him with you always. And I love you'  His death is the ultimate celebration of life as a Christian, he is in heaven rejoicing, dancing, breathing and probably playing golf. ;o)  He is no longer suffering. 

I pray that over the years she will not see her birthday as a day to grieve but a day to celebrate the life of the man that she called her hero.  That she may view her birthday poppa's birthday as well.  He was welcomed into the arms of his heavenly father... he is home in his mansion. :o)

May the families of those 3 boys also find peace. 

Saturday, November 15, 2008

National Adoption Day

On this day marked to celebrate adoption.

I ask this one thing:  Will you pray for those children that do not know the love of a mother and father.  The one's who by no fault of their own are cast aside.  Those who's parents had no choice because they had nothing else.  Those who's parents did not have the money needed to keep themselves alive, and therefore have left a legacy that will forever follow their children.

All children need love, all children deserve hope.

Will you pray for the orphans of the world... and those desiring to give them a home?

Friday, November 14, 2008


So do you ever just have moments when you just feel blessed?

Today was one of those days.  We have been a bit taken aback by the medical costs that we have incurred with little E, and my not working.  We have stressed some, but have always known God had this plan for us so he would provide some how.  The other night D and I were praying for God's provision, we asked not that he over indulge, but just allow us to stay afloat.  Today he indulged by way of a very dear and very generous friend.  Now the pride in us says... we don't need the help, we don't want to ask for this... we can do this on our own.  But this person said this is what God laid on his heart and he wanted to return a blessing.  How do you have any pride when someone tells you that?!  God answered our prayers in a way we never saw coming, and humbled us YET again.

I have been thinking about my kids, and what my life is like with them in it.  I am exhausted and not always a very patient and happy mommy... but I wouldn't change them in any way.  I wouldn't have my kung fu boys if they weren't here! I wouldn't have my sweet S, or my hardly ever present Z ;o)

My sweet husband made me my favorite popcorn tonight.  How is that for love?!

And I have some pretty amazing friends.  Some that I feel closer to than I can even fathom considering we have never actually met in person (although we will!!!)  and some that I can't believe God has blessed me with, that I know will be with me for always.

And I am not one for feeling "jinxed' but I actually had 8 full hours of sleep last night.  Count them 8!!!!  Praise the Lord for that!

I also have a pretty amazing sister in law... I hate that she lives so far away... but at least she reads my blog. :o)  Love you


Who knew E was a Kung fu ninja?!

We rented Kung fu Panda tonight and watched it with the boys.  So for most of the movie E was just kind of watching, and climbing on me.

Then the bad white tiger guy (can't remember his name) shows up.  And all of a sudden E jumps off the couch and starts kung fu punching the air in front of the TV as if he's fighting this bad guy.

We were rolling!!!

The next scene was a quiet one so he climbed back up in the couch and started saying "E big!"  "E ~insert punching moves and noises~"  

SO funny!

Then at one point N got up with him, to help I guess, and E stopped him and moved him back like he was trying to protect him.  Then told me that N was a baby, N was little, E was big.

So now we have our little kung fu master E. ;o)  

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Man, can I tell you that I hate the days we have to go to the doctor.  
E has developed a dislike for the Children's Hospital...hmmm me too, but for different
Today we had to go have his incision checked out.  And since it's not healing properly they had to cauterize the hole.  Gosh that was not fun.  E sure wasn't happy with me afterwards and was SO ready to go home.  But we had one more visit.  And at this one we were cleared to go to daycare.

This is a bittersweet happiness actually.  I am happy that he is able to go to school.  But honestly I am going to miss him and being home.  

I will confess... and I hope none of you hang me... that I am not full time stay at home mom material.  I would LOVE to work part time outside of the home and then have longer time during the days with my family.  But I sure miss adult contact, I didn't really realize until I went back to work.  This time it's kinda different though.. I really do want to be home more with my kids.  

I am however the insurance carrier and after the last couple of months... um I believe we need

so... hi ho hi ho back to work I go.

One thing that gives me a bit of peace is that he will be in N's class and just this morning as we were dropping N off, E wanted to stay with him.  He was not at all happy that he had to leave him, and this is the first time this has happened.  We have also been talking to him about the fact the we will get to stay there soon.  

We shall see what happens on Monday. 


Almost as if to reiterate my "Brothers" post we had such a fun night.

S started a towel flick fight with mommy... so we chased each other around the house.  Daddy took over.  And as soon as daddy got the towel and started to try the flicking, E and N charged in to the rescue.  N jumped on him and E took his blue balloon and commenced to bopping daddy with it.  It was so funny.

The towel was put away and the wrestling started.  If daddy was tickling N, E would attack and vice versa.  We had a bit pandemonium in the house.  LOVED it.  It was so fun to see them stick up for each other and protect each other.   Then they got piggy back rides from daddy.  I have pics to share later.

As they were getting ready for bed.  N got his bath, then while E was getting his with daddy.  N got all the things needed to redress E's belly, the gauze the tape, he laid out the towel on the floor for him to lay on.  It was all straight and neat.  Ready for daddy to do his thing.  It was so neat to watch.  He's a great big brother.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I post alot about N and E together. They are so cute. I am amazed daily at how they have embraced each other as siblings.

While we were in process we talked about E, and his being N's brother that we would go get from Ethiopia. I think some where in his mind he thinks they are biological. Sometimes when E will say something in Amharic, N will say that their Oopia mom used to say that to them. And we sort of just let it go because he doesn't seem to grasp the difference, and right now that's not such a big issue. They love each other. They play together, they fight over toys, they read books together, they love Go Diego! and sausage and pasta, they chase each other around the house incessantly.

This morning I had to come in to work for a few hours, and this made E VERY unhappy as he had to stay home, which made N unhappy because he was also leaving to go to school. He didn't like seeing his brother crying and so upset. Soon they will be in class together, and I believe this will strengthen their bond.

N is a protector, he has always been the champion of the girls. If he sees a girl/woman in need he will be right there to come to their rescue. And I see him doing the same for E now. He tries to help when we have to take care of E's healing belly. He's the first to get a towel, and help with washing hands. He's right there to tattle when E does something wrong, and the first to try to explain when he thinks he knows when something is bother ing E.
He's my hero. ;o) It's a blessing.

N has had a hard time with the loss of individual attention... which we have tried hard to ease, but not because he dislikes his brother, he just wants mommy and daddy's attention more. ;o)

I look forward to seeing them grow together. To see how they continue to bond and love, to see how they fight with each other and for each other.

I love being a mom!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Things change

you know what I miss?  My little N.  I miss his little boy face, and his little boy voice, and his little boy hands.

I miss his cuddle time.  He doesn't like to cuddle like he used to, he has too much energy, he's never still long enough.  He goes to sleep in his own bed now so I can't rock him to sleep any more. He still runs to me several times a day to give me kisses, and tells me he loves me 100 times a day.  But he's not the 'baby' any more.  Even D noticed today that his hands are big boy hands now. ;o(  He even says he's not the baby, he's a big boy.

E is my little snuggle bug now.  He loves to be held like a baby, calls himself the baby, wants to be kissed on and snuggled.  I LOVE it.  But I still miss my little N.  

There's something wonderful yet sad when your kids grow.  It's funny how we urge them to crawl and walk and speak and grow... and then they do ... and we miss those times when they didn't.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Why I love Fall

My hubby took these for me ;o)

More funny boys

Super E!
Must have been Diego... their favorite show.
N...can you read his shirt? ;o)
N wasn't paying enough attention to E. ;o)
What cha doin?


E loves S's boyfriend...Big E ;o)
S is a great pillow
Just cause it's cute
Look, he even wears them upside down and backwards.

The tough questions

A little history.
My father in law passed away a year ago this month.
He owned an El Camino, the "cruck" we call it.  
He left it to D, and D has been driving it quite a bit lately.
This morning N asked "Momma, when are we going to give Poppa back his truck?  When he gets out of the hospital?"  
I said: "No, poppa's not in the hospital any more, he's in heaven now, remember he died?"  
He said: "Why did he die?"
I said: " Sometimes people get sick and their bodies wear out.  He is in heaven now with Jesus remember?" All the time trying not to associate hospital's with dying since E has been in and out of the hospital so many times.
He said: "I miss Poppa"

It's interesting the things he remembers and talks about.  He hasn't spoken about Poppa in months, I wasn't sure if he remembered, or knew that he had died.  We didn't take him to any of the funeral events because we weren't sure he would understand and we didn't want to cause him any trauma.  But I wondered about our decision then, and still do kind of.  I wonder if it would have helped him understand the concept.  Or does a child need to understand death at such a young age?  I don't really think so.

E has witnessed it in his life.  Wonder what he remembers? If anything?

Sometimes N will say things like "My oopia (Ethiopia) mom used to sing this song to me, or my oopia mom said this, or I did this when I was in oopia."  Since he he did not spend time with her, at least that we know of, I wonder if these are memories, or things he wished he remembered?  

Not too long ago, after we got home with E, N packed up a little bag and said he was going to go visit his oopia mom, and he would see me soon.  I asked him how he was going to get there and he said walk, it wasn't that far. I told him it was too far to go, but that someday we would try to visit her.  He then talked about missing her for weeks afterwards.  It broke my heart.  Not because I didn't want him to miss her, but that he longed for her, and that life that had been changed so drastically coming here.  It's what makes me sad about what my boys will not have.

I think of all the really cool, and interesting things they will get to experience here, I mean heck they have already been on a plane and flown across the world.  But then I too mourn the things they will never know, or memories that will fade. 

I know the questions will get harder, and the answers not always easy.  What I can say with honesty is that they were both loved tremendously and that the decision for them to be placed was not made easily.  That the love we have for their families is great, and the respect immeasurable.  

Life holds questions we may never be able to answer, wouldn't it be SO much easier if we had all the answers?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Sums it up

Check out this song sung on Oprah today....Truer words couldn't be said right now


I thought  would take a moment to talk about the joys of adoption and of parenthood in general.

I was thinking about one of the last lines in my post on lessons where I said that adoption wasn't for the faint of heart.  I think I need to rephrase that to, "Parenting isn't for the faint of heart". Parenting in general is an ever growing, ever learning process.  It's certainly not the easiest job, nor is there a step by step manual... sure there are a TON of self-help parenting books out there but some how they never really answer the real questions.

I truly love being a parent.  There are so many more joys than not.  Like my Z.  He's almost 19 yrs old, he's hardly ever around any more between college, work and church.  But his life is centered in Christ and in the church.  He didn't even start learning about his faith until High School, and Christ just TOOK HIM OVER.  Now that makes a momma proud. ;o)

My S continually amazes me.  She really has had so much on her plate, yet she is still such a loving, respectful, caring human being.  She doesn't complain when we ask her to help take care of the boys, she helps with the medical care of E, she gives N a bath when the need arises, she reads to the boys and in general constantly amazes me with her blessings.  She's still an almost 15 yr old with attitude and drama, but just when I think we are headed for some rough patches she catches herself and steps up to the plate.  I just LOVE that kid!

N... he was 2 when he came home.  He had all those toddler issues, didn't sleep, threw some SERIOUS tantrums and screaming fits, but from the very beginning he was a love bug.  He used to climb up my body like a little monkey and kiss my face all over.  He's a little big to climb me, but he's still a kisser, and hugger, and snuggler.  He must tell me 1000 times a day that he loves me.  He's a ball of energy and many times has no idea what to do with it all, but he's joyful energy.  He loves his siblings and has embraced E with mostly open arms... kind of depends on if E has a toy he

E... bless his heart, he's been through the wringer. He was handed to us 3 hours after we got off the plane and hasn't had a break since.  He's been poked,  prodded, pinched and medicated.  He didn't want to like at first, and honestly I sure can't blame him.  He's been home almost 3 months and he's learning words every day.  He's a love bug.  LOVEs to give kisses too.  Since I have had to go back to work part time he's the loudest when I walk in the door with  "MOMMY!!!!"  He runs to jump on me with hugs and kisses.  He's still not sleeping through the night and he's still a champion tantrum thrower as is N... but he's learning that we are home and family.

Adoption is only part of what makes us a family... but LOVE and the knowledge that God placed us all together... THAT is what makes us a family.  

Monday, November 3, 2008


On this National Adoption month I have such a heart that wants to cry out to others and say... see these kids... see how much they need love???!!!  How can we help??!!

Oh that I could win the lottery ...or have a huge inheritance... or just be independently wealthy I would have a whole house full.
I posted the other day about the boy that died at Big AHOPE ... take a minute to read about this post from a dear amazing woman who met him while there to pick up her daughter.

Gosh, when you ask God to break your heart for the things that break His, he sure does.  

As I have been in the adoption process I have changed so many of my thoughts and perceptions. What do you think of when you think adoption?  There are so many different types. You have domestic open adoption, domestic closed, foster care, infant international, special needs, waiting older children.  Do any of these kids deserve a family any less than another?  I don't think so.  We chose to go to Ethiopia because we felt that God told us our next child was there.  And then we chose to go back because our next son was there. Will we go back? Only God knows that answer, but I sure would love to see ALL of these kids home.  

While we were in ET picking up E we spent alot of time at the orphanage that had the older kids.  They were amazing kids.  One older girl in particular kind of took over E, carried him everywhere, washed his hands, helped to feed him.  Just took care of him.  She was a blessing, and I know she's probably home with her new family in IL now.  So many of the older boys playing soccer, shyly smiling, wanting to talk but not sure what to or how.  The little guy about 8yrs old, "B" who followed us around asking if we were E's family.  I wonder if he also had a family waiting for him?  He helped carry my plate, sat with us while we ate.  Broke my heart in so many pieces.  

We also got to meet M, the 6 yr old girl that we sponsor at little AHOPE. Oh how bittersweet that was. She is beautiful.  My heart just ached as I placed my arms around her tiny little body and hugged her close.  Oh how I wished we were bringing her with us.  We recently got an update on her.  AHOPE has a child sponsorship program that is wonderful.  The updates are priceless, the new pictures, the opportunity to actually meet them, and to also know that you are able to pray that this child find the family that will love them for life.

Adoption isn't for the faint hearted, but it IS in God's heart.  He is the father of all fathers... he knows what we need, who we need, and who needs us.  He "sets the lonely in families".

Our boys didn't come from my womb, but they are SO far in my heart... I feel like the Grinch... my heart has grown 4 sizes too

Sunday, November 2, 2008


Wow this is a big month huh?

We have so much personally happening this month, and there is so much globally happening as well.  
1. National Adoption month, with National Adoption Day being November 15th.
2.  It's time to VOTE... in one pretty monumental election.
3. Thanksgiving!!!  I think this is one of my favorite holidays, because it's about being thankful for what you have, it's about getting together to eat yourself stupid, turkey coma, and family... and of course football.

1.  I get to go back to work full time...soon ;o(
2.  S has her 15th birthday on the 17th.
3. We will celebrate the 1 year anniversary of my father-in-laws going home to heaven on the 17th as well.
4. My parents celebrate 39 years of marriage together.
5.  My little brother turns 34.

My dear friend Cindy has her court date, oh how I pray for a fast date.  And those of you still waiting for court dates... praying for you as well.

This month is one of my favorites, I look forward to the leaves turning colors, family sharing time together, the chill that settles into the air, the special feeling that this time of year always brings.  
I hope to remember each day this year something that I am thankful for... a word, a smile, a shreek of "mommy!", an "I love you"... with a world in so much chaos... I want to remember that life is Better than Good.

Fun Saturday

We had a good day ... just thought I would share...