I feel a little anxious today. Not sure why. I guess I am just REALLY READY for our referral (Ha, like every waiting family isn't).
I spend my nights looking for stories about Ethiopia. Reading blogs of others who have been and brought their beautiful children home. Dreaming about the day we will go to pick up our new children.
Until that time I will just sit and dream.
When we were put on the wait list our agency told us the wait for a referral would be between 6-10 months. I'm hoping our wait is at least half over. A girl can dream right?
In good news, it seems the judge who was on maternity leave is now back at work. This will give the country two judges again thus, hopefully, speeding up the process a little.
If you want to read a wonderful story about a family who stepped out in faith and made a difference for three great kids click here. You wont be sorry.
Today the kids and I are scrubbing all day so it will not look like a frat house around here when he walks in the door.
We spent the day at Disneyland yesterday. It was glorious. If you want to visit California and have a nice day at Disney with hardly anyone else around February is definitely the month. Wednesday seems to be the least crowded day of the week.
We went on all the kids favorite rides and instead of a 50 minute wait, most rides were more like 5 minutes. Pure heaven.
I had a bit of post traumatic stress today, however, while remembering our last visit.
The kids decided they wanted ice cream and I got them all strawberry ice cream bars. It seems these bars had been sitting on the dry ice a little to long and promptly stuck to Samantha's tongue upon contact.
Ever seen the movie A Christmas Story? The pole scene was lived out by my daughter in the middle of Disneyland.
She was SCREAMING. The Popsicle would not come lose. I told the guy at the cart that I needed something warm to pour on her tongue to release the Popsicle and all he did was stare there frozen in terror. I grabbed a water bottle that had been in the display and poured it in her mouth which did then release the Popsicle from her tongue and the screaming stopped.
The people standing around applauded. I don't think they sold very many ice creams after that incident.
Do you want to know what the Disneyland employee said to me after the incident????
Mam, I need that empty water bottle back since you didn't pay for it. I have to account for all my inventory.
And then we walked away into the sunset. With Samantha holding a warm towel on her bloody tongue.
Yes, another wonderful day at the happiest place on earth.
At the begining of 2009 Dave and I decided that we wanted that to change. I searched for devoitonals, inspirational stories, anything that would bring us together.
We finally decided on a drastic course of action.
We would read the Books of the Bible together as a family.
What a concept, huh?
Two or three nights a week we meet together for some time as a family. I would like to say it was every night, but I am happy with the balance we have found between sports and God. It definitely doesn't seem as one sided anymore, the tetor totter had definitely been tilted in the wrong direction for a while.
After we read a Chapter or two in the Bible we do one of the lessons in this book.
I noticed that my children have not been very respectful and kind to each other lately and I wanted us to discuss what the Bible had to say about kindness.
The book has 24 rules you can use in your house and you can add to them to make your own kind of "Family Constitution".
We have been working on this one for a few weeks:
We love one another, treating others with kindness, gentleness, and respect.
Dave and I are both sarcastic people thus we have produced 5 children who think sarcasm is fabulous. However, at times, it can sound cruel and unkind. We need to watch that around here.
I love the fact that you work on each rule for 5 nights, and each night there are different discussions and Bible verses to look up regarding that rule. This book can be geared for older or younger children. I usually just use it as a guideline and then add my own information and questions to some of theirs for my high school age kids.
I usually make a snack or something to make the time more fun. We have had some great discussions during this time and I have learned things about my children I never knew.
Here are some pictures of Valentines Day Evening. I got a few little gifts for the kids and let them open them before our devotional. It was fun.
Garrett was very excited about his bubble gum (We generally have a no gum rule in our house).
Paige having a hard time waiting for her turn.
Tyler's happy. Paige is daydreaming about what could be in her bag (it was a my little pony baby).
Samantha got some new sleep pants.
I love my family, and I love spending time with them. Making 2009 the year we have scheduled time together in the evening has been one of the best decisions we have ever made.
If you have teenagers I would highly recommend doing this. Its amazing how lose their lips get when they are relaxed and bribed with sugar.
I only have a few short years left with my teens and I am determined to fill their hearts with God's truth's before I set them off into the world.
I really wish I truly understood how fast the time would go by when they were little. It's almost time for the oldest to spread his wings and fly (18 months until the first day of college). While he may be ready, this mom isn't so sure she is.
In the evening when I am laying on the couch after a long day, feeling tired and not wanting to go upstairs and change into my comfy lounging clothes, I will just start taking off cumbersome clothing one by one.
And stuffing the items into the couch.
Kind of like the kids do with wrappers.
It seems one day while I was occupied elsewhere and the children were suppose to be picking up, someone found an unmentionable in the couch cushion.
The silliness of the moment was to much for the kids to resist.
I found these pictures on my camera a few days ago.
Kind of scary, huh?
Some of the others were even scarier. Lets just say they had a good time with this one.
Mom will not be stuffing anything into the couch anymore. She is cured of her laziness!
p.s. The item in question is stuffed full of toilet paper, I just wanted to let you know in case you thought I might be Dolly Parton's twin sister.
It was just called PBS when I was little, but now it has this fancy smancy name.
I am not happy with Sprout.
Oh, sure, I love Barney and Sesame Street just as much as the other guy. I'm not mad at them.
It's the Sprout Management that I need to speak with.
Will you please stop reminding my child every 30 seconds that she can go on sproutonlinedotcom and play fun games, color her favorite characters, and play paper dolls with her favorite Sprout friend.
You see, Sprout Friends, sometimes I actually need to be on my computer and I really really don't like having a 5 year old yell over my should every 10 seconds that it is HER TURN and she has important stuff to do on the puter.
Oh, how she loves her Sprout friends. They have taught her how to manipulate the mouse quiet well. She has even started reading some of the words so she can navigate the whole site ALL BY HERSELF. Words like click here, clear page and print are all a part of her world now.
Zach, who is now 17, started the collection when he was 5 and his siblings have been adding to it ever since.
Paige loved playing with the big duplo blocks but had been asking to play with the big bucket of little Lego's for some time. I gave it to her and she quickly started digging through it looking for pieces.
She really liked all the little star wars figures that had been collected over the years.
Both Samantha and Garrett decided to help her sort through all the pieces and organize them a little.
We found some really fun stuff. I got on eBay to see how much some of these sets were selling for. I was shocked at how much you could get for one little star wars guy.
I don't have the heart to sell any of it though.
After all, we need Chewbacca to watch over the Star Wars fairy princess castle.
It just wouldn't be the same without him.
Feel free to stop by for a snack if you find yourself in the so cal area.
In other news......there were 3 referrals last week (all boys), which puts our unofficial number in the referral line at 53.
Congratulations to the happy and excited families!
The kids had fun and got quite a workout. Here is Garrett trying to make it to the top.
He did make it, and was very proud of himself.
They climbed pretty high.
Here is Samantha hanging from the top.
She wasn't to sure about this in the beginning. It didn't really seem like a "girlie" thing to do.
I think the pink ropes helped to change her mind.
She actually did great! I think the fact that she has long legs really helped her. She did some of the more difficult climbs at harder inclines and really enjoyed it.
The week was filled with baseball practices, basketball practices, parent meetings about baseball, etc.. Sounds more like sports took over rather than life doesn't it?
We took the older boys out of school on Friday and headed up to the mountains. I was so disappointed when we woke up that morning and it was dark and gray. That meant more rain and more snow in the local mountains. Did we dare drive up and perhaps get caught in a storm? We decided to go for it.
The drive up was beautiful. It only takes about 90 minutes to get their and we were greeted with a winter wonderland. Snow everywhere on the ground, yet the skies were clear in the mountains.
We have a local park we usually go to to sled. There was so much snow it was hard to walk but we all had fun. It was Paige's first trip to the snow and she was really excited. She had fun sledding down the hill with her dad.
Here she is being a little impatient. Hurry up Dad and drag me back up that hill!!!
Samantha didn't seem to concerned. She was warm in her parka and having a great time. Well, that is until her brother started throwing snow balls at her. That made her mad.
The older three kids found a hill a little off the beaten track. They had to hike a little to it and were pretty tired after going up and down a couple of times.
Here's Tyler after climbing back up the hill. It must not have been that bad, he is still smiling.
Zach passed out on the snow for a few minutes to get his strength back.
Garrett had a great time!!! That kid was completely covered in snow!
I am a little tired and was so happy to realize that the high schooler's had Monday off. That meant I could sleep in.
About an hour ago I decided to check Tyler's schedule (at his new school) and was startled to discover he DID NOT have Monday off like everyone else.
What made this revelation even worse was that it was 11:30 at night and he hadn't even showered yet. We have to leave by 7:00 a.m. for him to make it to school on time. He finally got into bed around midnight and I told him to enjoy his six and a half hours of sleep before the alarm went off.
Needless to say he was less than happy about this turn of events. He also assumed he had the day off.
It's been raining here for a couple of days which means baseball practice is cancelled for tomorrow night. The fields are all wet and soggy. Hubby was suppose to have his meeting with the parents tomorrow night (the one wear he explains how he expects them to behave) and that has been moved to my house.
I guess I better go jump in bed. I have a lot of cleaning to do tomorrow (or I guess later today as it is already after midnight, ugh) before I let forty people into my house tomorrow night. Do you think I have to prepare snacks too?
Here is an article I found really disturbing. If you get a chance, read it and let me know what you think.
Good night peeps.
Boy oh boy, this conference could not have come at a better time for me.
Have you ever felt like you can't do anything right?
Your a bad wife. Bad mother. Bad pet owner.
You just can't quite get it all together.
That has been my life for the last few weeks.
I am much in need of a little encouragement.
We are going to a Whole Hearted Women's conference. The speaker wrote this book which has been a huge help to me during my first year as a home schooling mom.
I'm praying I come home all refreshed and ready to take on the world.
Well, at least my little corner of it anyway.
Enjoy your weekend my friends.
I asked her what she was doing?
"Shhh", she said "I'm trying to look through your belly button and see my new sister in your tummy."
Poor child. Clearly I am going to have to explain the concept of adoption to her once again.
She is very excited and can't wait to be a big sister.
I looked online today for a big map of the world to hang on the wall so we could draw a line from our country to Ethiopia. I'm thinking the visual may help her understand a little better.
I heard her tell one of her friends at school the other day that she was going to get a pretty brown sister soon. And if she is lucky she might get a brown brother too. Her little friend shook her head in agreement at how wonderful that will be. Made me smile.
Our agency had one more referral at the end of last week so we are #57 overall.
We are all getting very excited!!!