Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Ghosts of Halloween Past

MEOW!
This was my dress when I was little too!
Repeat after me please...its not old....its vintage!!
Sentimental lion-girl..........


Look at those baby cheeks!


Star Trek Spock and Baby Minnie...our first Halloween!
(Umm..did I mention we were geeks at heart? ) LOL


Growl!

Just want to wish everyone a hauntingly happy Halloween a bit early! Lauren won't let me post pictures of this year's costume yet as she doesn't want to spoil the thrill of the big unveil for all the Mimi's & Papas this coming Friday! Soooo....I rustled up some of our favorite snapshots from past Halloweens AND a little peek at our carved pumpkin! Hope you all enjoy the photos and thanks for stopping by! BOO! Give your munchkins and goblins a little squeeze from me! :)






Friday, October 24, 2008

Shout-out


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Another Year Better!




Okay y'all, we have to take a break from my usual ramblings so that I can give a HUGE shout-out to my hubby & Lauren/Little Man's Dadda(a.k.a. Scott), wishing him a glorious birthday tomorrow!
It has to be said that when I approached the idea of blogging a birthday post in his honor it was not greeted with glee and anticipation. LOL But nagging ( er....persuasion ) prevailed and ta-da! .... we have a sneak peek into the man previously referred to in several of my old posts! ;) So then, who is this fella that approaches the Name Game with grit and determination ( not to mention a bit of playground folly )?.......Could he be the same one who brought the sniffles knocking on our door 2 weeks back? Or perhaps he is the one who eschewed the beloved sporting event to take us girls to the Apple Orchard 2 years ago(top picture) and every year since? Well, maybe its the same guy who, despite not caring all that much for extreme heights, still boarded the Old Navy Pier Ferris Wheel and gamely rode along with a smile, rather than disappoint his sweet girl.(middle picture) Or could it be the fella who works so very hard everyday so that we girls can spend our days together at home? Hmmm......
Yep, you guys already guessed it.......its the same guy and despite it all, he somehow makes it look easy on most days....like the perfect balancing act! (final picture) For that and so much more....we girls send big birthday wishes and lotsa love to THAT guy!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Let's Face It

I don't often like to include pictures of myself while blogging as I prefer to focus on our kiddos, but this particular pic. is a favorite of mine & Lauren's and the circumstances around it have been tickling my brain of late! This is another pose from the set of 6 year old pictures I previously posted about ( Six Things I Love about Lauren ) and it came about as an accident really. The photographer had asked if I would like to step in and have a few photos taken of us girls together and just as I had nodded, 'no', Lauren gleefully shouted, 'oh yes', grabbed my hand and took me along. I'm so glad she did!

What makes this photo unique is that after snapping it, the photographer mentioned that she could finally see the family resemblance between Lauren and I. With Lauren's blended ancestry ( Ukrainian/Kazakh. ) it is not always obvious that we are an adoptive family, thereby making these types of observations not common but not rare either. Often we have random folks ask questions such as, "where ever did you get those beautiful brown eyes?" or, " she must really favor her Daddy." LOL Years ago Lauren and I developed ways to address these innocent and well intended inquiries and often we will both touch a spot near our hearts, a symbol to us both that we know we are alike in all the really important ways. That day, with the photographer, I looked at my girl to see her smiling big, nodding and touching her heart lightly. I knew that she understood better than most, just how closely our hearts, dreams & souls dance in sync. I also think I know what the photographer saw when she said that.....of all the photos taken that day, Lauren looks the most naturally radiant in this one and its easy to see my joy of being her Mama in my big smile too!

Similarly over the years, both Scott and I have been asked if we missed or mourned not having a child that physically resembles us. Some of you that may be in the earlier or waiting stages of your adoptions may be wondering the same things....or being asked the same questions. Truthfully I can say ( and I know Scott feels the very same way ) that we absolutely believe Lauren ( and our son ) to be more perfect for us and more beautiful than any other child could ever have been. We also have taken great strides to ensure that Lauren always knows she is valued for who and what she is, separate from physical appearances. Adoption books may tell you ( while bonding ) to focus on the things that you do share in common with your child, such as sense of humor, smile or laugh. Those are all fine, but we always wanted ( needed ) Lauren to know how much we cherished ALL the things unique to her........to always understand that we value all of her and celebrate in all the unfolding nuances of who she is and what she will become.

On the other side of this though, I am reminded that another set of eyes....maybe lovely brown or sparkling hazel?..... beheld this child first, months before my own. Someday Lauren may wonder and be openly curious about her Birth Mother's physical appearance and character. We won't have all of those answers, but this is what I do know...........she was very beautiful, strong and courageous. She may have faced circumstances that were beyond her control, but she bravely fought to control the choices that she did have: to keep herself and her baby healthy throughout her pregnancy......to seek medical assistance for a normal delivery........to make a plan for this child to be placed into loving arms, when hers were unable to shelter, guide and care for on a daily basis. I pray to God that as Lauren's questions & insights grow I will always be able to answer her questions, no matter the complexity, in a way that honors both her, her heritage and the incredible woman with the eyes that lovingly held Lauren's eyes first. It is almost unspeakable how very much I do honor Lauren's ( and Pei-En's ) birth mothers.......I do know in a very real sense that they walk beside me every day, supporting me in this glorious journey of Mama-hood. And while I may not ever know details about their physical appearance beyond guesses & speculations, I have seen glimpses into their hearts and souls & that humbles me.

And finally....what do I see when I look at the picture of Lauren and I above? What do I see when my blessed blue eyes turn to look into her beautiful brown eyes?............ I see my legacy......my destiny........ and very simply,.......... I see my child.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

He's All Boy ~ Update Time!



It's the most wonderful time of the month when the updates arrive! And with sweet Lauren still under the weather, it could not have come at a better time; we girls needed a boost and I know Scott will be so thrilled to see our little man as soon as he can! ( Though he is growing weary of the pink bedding....LOL ).


So let's see......these were taken on September 27th, so he was just a bit over 2 1/2 months old. He was 7.6 pnds at birth and is now a robust 13.2 pounds and 23 1/2 inches in length, making him HUGE by any standard! When I first read the measurements and did the conversion, I presumed it was a mistake....then I saw his precious pictures/video and its all true! Look at those cheeks, thighs and belly.....the cutest little man I've seen AND he smiles and laughs a bit on the video!! Mama has been waiting for that!! I'm so crazy about him!!

I also wish to take a moment to congratulate the families that received news of their babies/toddlers these past 2 wks. They join all the rest of us on cloud nine and its a great place to be! I also wanted to thank everyone who stops by, wishes us well( be it comments, emails, prayers, etc.) and is following along. It means a lot to us all!





video

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

S.O.S.

Some of you may recall from the Pumpkin post Sunday that Scott ( a.k.a.) Daddy stayed home with a set of sniffles that morphed into a nasty little bug! Welllll....my poor sweet girl has gone and captured those same nervy buggers and is suffering in a mighty way today! ( Yesterday too!) The above picture IS NOT from today, cuz she's currently nestled on the sofa in jammies, hugging her sweet lovey Red Baby ,but it sums up nicely how she is feeling!

I hate it when my baby is feeling poorly and the worst has been her wicked cough. It makes laying down to rest impossible, with rest being what she most needs! It also makes playing tough and her interest in all things play is low to begin with right now. She cried sad tears when I had to call her in sick to school and she is devastated that she may miss tomorrow's field trip to.......you guessed it, a Pumpkin Farm! And I am scheduled to go along as a chaperon!

To date, she has been seen by our caring doctor........'it just needs to run its course'. :( To pass the time we have read all of her Skippy John Jones books, every last Fancy Nancy book we own, painted with water colors, watched 2 movies ( a rare occurrence indeed! ), painted her toe nails, snuggled for hours ( with Me, Mama, trying not to breathe in the germies, but without making her aware of my precautions), colored pictures, and now she is fitfully resting & coughing up a storm!

Sooooo...... it got me thinking( always a scary thing! LOL).......please, does anyone else have any ideas for quiet activities we could do to pass time on our sick day(s)? She does not feel up to baking cookies ( that's how I knew she was really sick! ) or much play.......any tips, tried and true?? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?




Sunday, October 12, 2008

'Punkin Pickin'




Just wanted to give you all a glimpse into our perfect little afternoon at the Pumpkin Farm. Traditionally we take Lauren to a larger & busier 'punkin place', but this year we stayed right in town at a local farm and had such fun! It was nearly 80 degrees, so our Halloween/Fall clothes were not possible, but gosh was it a gorgeous day! We wandered through haunted corn mazes(only getting lost once or twice!), painted pumpkins, took a hay ride ( bumpy but lovely!), visited with & fed the furry faces showcased above ( Lauren loved this sweet & shy little brown goat ) but it was the woolly sheep and the chubby white goat who muscled in for all the munchies! And of course we picked out 2 glorious plump pumpkins and a wee little tiny one to make a grand total of 3.
It was just us girls, as Scott was home with the sniffles, so I did my best to snap a few photos AND keep up with my girl! All in all it was just a charming & festive outing to celebrate this glorious time of year. The trees are busy changing into their vibrant hued costumes, and while I can't say that the air has been brisk ( warm actually!), it absolutely IS Autumn and I adore everything about it!
Happy Fall Everyone!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

7 Random Things and a Court Date

Hi Everyone!
We are finally back in Internet land and my yes, it does feel good! The Flintstones era might appear charming, but I'll take my techie comforts any day!
While I was away from my clever blogger buddies, a few of 'em were tagged to share 7 Random Things about Themselves. I'm gonna play along too and hope I can scrape together 7 things to share!

1. I adore the smell of coffee, but have never developed a taste for it. (Despite WANTING to like it!)

2. I LOVE to bake, especially desserts/treats, but rarely ( if ever) do I eat or sample what I make. ( LOL And no, I have not poisoned anyone just yet! ) I also don't eat cake; not even on my birthday. Well...sometimes I will eat the frosting part!

3. My usual breakfast is a napkin full of dry cereal. When I taught school, I used to take a baggy full in the car for my commute. My favorites are Fruit Loops and Honey Nut Cheerios.

4. Like Lisa R., hotel rooms can creep me out. I too will not walk barefoot on the floors, handle the remote or use the comforters/quilts!

5. I tell my dog, Lexi, all of my secrets. She has NEVER ratted me out! :)

6. If there is a song I adore, I will listen to it over and over again on repeat. I have been known to wear c.d.'s out this way!

7. I'm fairly certain I saw Big Foot in our backyard one night years ago. No one believes me, but I'm pretty sure it was him. ( large...hairy...8 feet tall....grunty voice....beady eyes.....matted fur......sound familiar?.....you decide! )

Tee-hee....that was fun! I won't tag any other unsuspecting bloggy or email buddies, but would be tickled if others' carry on with the fun!

Finally, I have been bursting to share with you all that we received word from our agency that our first court hearing has been scheduled for October 28th. We are thrilled to be able to anticipate this big first step & a bit nervous too! Please, if you can, keep Pei-En's birth mom and family in your prayers as they prepare to make a very difficult, loving and courageous choice for him. They are certainly in our thoughts, minds & prayers daily.


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Little Bundles of Love in the Mail




This week, along with all the other little things we do in the span of a normal week, we have been putting the finishing touches on our first care package for our little man! Pei-En will turn 3 months old next week and at that time ( or right around the 3 mos. mark ) he will be transitioned from the maternity hospital into his Foster Family's home. This is the normal procedure for the program we are involved with, through our wonderful agency. The Foster Care system in Taiwan has significant differences than those of our country and through other families experiences we know he will receive loving, attentive and skilled care. We will be forever grateful for this dedication and consider it a tremendous gift for our son and our family while we wait to bring him home.
Sooooo, what did we put into this bundle of love? Welllll, of course a note, cuz you all know my penchant for long winded correspondences.....lol...and I actually kept this one fairly brief, with my only plea being that the foster family use the items we are sending without fear of ruining an item or concerns about keeping things pristine. We absolutely want these things to be used for our baby! In addition to that, we sent a baby photo album with family photos, a soft teddy bear rattle ( had to have it! ), a barbell rattle, a set of teething keys, a soft book, a cotton blanket, an outfit with half a dozen pair of tiny socks ( sooo sweet! ) a onesie, a sleep sack ( I'm a fanatic on sleep sacks!), two disposable cameras( thanks Mimi O. & Papa Mike!) and two footed play sleepers. I want to send a HUGE thanks to my folks also ( Mimi & Papa K. ) for the dinosaur sleeper, Mickey outfit and onesie. A huge help to us! :)
I do know we are probably sending way too much, but by golly it has been hard not to shop after waiting so long. Even laundering all of the itty bitty things in Dreft brought back a flood of sweet memories of preparing for Lauren. It is also difficult, very difficult not to be able to care for our baby boy on a daily basis. Therefore much of that yearning and need has gone into this bundle, with the hopes that it conveys adequately what we so want everyone to know ( and says in the red sleeper I found)......that Pei-En is deeply loved & cherished from his family across the big pond....now & always!