Perry and I have talked about it for years, always saying "someday, maybe." Well, lately we've felt many signs telling us to make a decision. Adopt, or close the door to the possibility. Last week, we attended an information session and left with the confidence that this is our path. Today, we filed the paperwork to adopt a Waiting Child from China.
When I told my mom, she asked "Why?." At first, I laughed, thinking she was asking why I would want to go through it all again, the sleepless nights, the potty training, and even bigger issues like attachment that we've never had to face. But what she really meant was "what made you decide the time was right?" We've had many signs lately. The precious adopted children of a friend at church, both Waiting Children from China. Random questions from Sarah and Abby about going to an orphanage and getting a baby sister. An old friend from high school who found me on Facebook and told me about his adopted girl from China. And then this information session, a week after I went online to start getting information. That night at the meeting, we just felt such an overwhelming sense of peace. While other couples were struggling with which country, or even more basic questions such as domestic or international, we just felt confident that we were being called to China.
So today I filed our application with Lifeline Children's Services. It's a long process, probably 12-18 months, but we are filled with excitement and anticipation.
Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Friday, May 21, 2010
Sarah has been begging me to make that meal "where you cut up your food into little pieces, put it on a stick, and dip it in yummy stuff." So this week I did that for her, and it was fun, but I remembered why I don't do it very often - what a mess!!!
After dinner, Perry told the girls that he was going to be looking for a new job. Sarah asked a ton of questions: Why did you leave your old job? How will we get money? Will we be able to buy food? Where will we live? We assured her that we were going to be OK, we're in God's hands and He will take care of us, we have money in the bank so we can still buy food, etc. During all this, Abby sat silently. Finally Abby asked, "Can I have dessert now?" Ha!!! I love how different they are!
Monday, May 17, 2010
I've been praying about these eyes - Abby's eyes. Ever since she was a baby, people have noticed her eyes. They're big, and bright blue, with impossibly long eyelashes, and they're expressive and beautiful.
Lately, people have been noticing her eyes for the wrong reason. In late March, her teacher noticed that one eye seemed to be drifting out on occasion. Not all the time, and not severely, but it caught her attention. (By the way, her teacher is a super star!!). I took Abby to an ophthalmologist who diagnosed her with intermittent exotropia, strabismus, or occasional drifting, but classified it as a very mild case. He said it was possible that she had always had it but we'd never noticed, because it was so mild. He advised us to watch it and try a little patch therapy to see if that helped.
Less than three weeks later, the drifting had worsened considerably. Her pediatrician noticed it, her friends noticed it, and she even saw it in the mirror. Her vision is so far unaffected, but I was very fearful of what this would mean for her cosmetically. I took her back to get rechecked, and the ophthalmologist recommended eye surgery. My prayers became more fervent.
This morning we took her to another ophthalmologist, one who has come highly recommended from several sources. He was so caring, so calm, so completely reassuring. Yes, she will need surgery. Yes, of course that scares me. But I feel confident we're in the right hands, and headed down the right path. With clarity comes peace. We will probably have it done this summer, and I hope and pray that she won't ever have to think about it again.
Monday, April 26, 2010
A pic from Easter Sunday-Abby worked on a project to share with her class. These are all the planets, in order, approximate relative size and color. This wasn't a required project - she just loves space and wanted to do it.
At the DVDads' Dog Wash/Car Wash:
Camping in our driveway in our new popup camper:
At the Alice in Wonderland ballet with the star, Emma:
Riding the trails:
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Our Spring Break plans made me a little nervous. First, we were going to 3 cities, and I wasn't really familiar with any of them. Second, I hadn't done much planning (not like me!). And third, Perry was still recovering from ankle surgery and was wearing a boot, so I thought he'd either be in a wheelchair or on a Little Rascal most of the week!
We started our break with the traveling Broadway presentation of The Wizard of Oz, and it was great. The girls really love shows like this, and I think this one was even better because they've seen the movie and read the book so many times.
Monday morning, we headed up to Huntsville to the Space and Rocket Museum.
I'm not sure what I expected, but I was a little disappointed. There's a new building that was incredible, but that only took us about 30 minutes. Then we headed to the other
building, which was much older and really run-down. We did see a great IMAX film called Walking on the Moon, and I don't regret going, but we won't be headed back any time soon!
We left Huntsville and drove to Chattanooga. Much of this drive was on a highway, and it was really beautiful. We arrived at our hotel and realized how perfect it was: in the heart of downtown Chattanooga, near the aquarium, the Children's Museum, and lots of restaurants, free breakfast, and an indoor pool! I can't say enough great things about this Residence Inn!
The first thing we had to do upon checking in was to pull Sarah's tooth.
She was determined to lose it in Tennessee, and had been working on it the whole drive up! Perry and I both tried unsuccessfully to pull it (we're both squeamish!), so I decided to try tying dental floss around it and slamming a door. After about 10 tries, it finally came out! Sarah was so brave.
The girls swam for awhile, and just as we were deciding where to go for dinner, we got a call from some friends who were also in town and heading to dinner, so we joined them. This was our favorite meal of the trip. The restaurant was great, the kids were entertained by each other, and the adults were able to relax and enjoy the moment.
More on Chattanooga later...
Saturday, March 13, 2010
I pray that my sweet girls will never get into trouble with the law! I will admit that it felt pretty odd yesterday, watching them get loaded into a police car. Fortunately this was all in good fun. As one of the prizes for the Cheetah Charge fundraiser, the girls won a ride in a race car. Last year they rode in a real race car, but this year they rode in the Hoover police's Porsche! They got to work the lights and siren, and they said it was AWESOME!
Thursday, February 25, 2010
This morning got off to a rough start when Sarah woke me up at 12:30 to tell me that she'd thrown up. Frankly, it's been a rough 7 days. Poor Sarah has been vomiting off and on (mostly at night) since last Wednesday. Combine that with Perry, who had ankle surgery on Monday and is recovering slowly.
I was feeling very sorry for myself this morning and wondering when I would see the light at the end of the tunnel. Then, before breakfast, Abby called Perry and me into our bedroom for a surprise. She had hung signs in our room that said "I hope you feel better" and left us stuffed animals. And, most impressively, she had made our bed. I felt so loved, so blessed. I hugged her and kissed her and was so thankful for my sweet little girl. Then she spoke:
A: "Do you know why I did this, Mommy?"
Me: "Well, I guess you did it because you love us?"
A: "I do love you, but I did it because Pastor Leisha told us to do something nice for our parents. She said whoever did the nicest, most creative thing would get an extra Bold Buck* next week."
That's my Abby. Always looking out for number one!
* Bold Bucks: currency that the kids earn at church for bringing their Bibles, memorizing verses, etc. Once a month these Bucks can be used to purchase small trinkets from the Camp Store.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Saturday night was the annual Girl Scout Sweetheart Dance. (um, happy birthday to me, ...but anyway...)
Poor Sarah had been sick since Thursday night, but she was rallying because she really wanted to go. She only ate a few bites of dinner, and she wasn't full of energy, but she looked beautiful and she had a great time. Abby had a rough start due to a hair crisis. She really wanted to pull her hair back with sparkly things like Sarah, but she didn't like the way it looked with her bangs. We played with it, and fought about it, for about 30 minutes before she finally settled down and decided to go with a classic barrette. I can only imagine the scene 10 years from now as she's preparing for a formal. Ugh. (I really wish I'd thought to take some pictures during this process. It was so painful but also hilarious.)
Enjoy the pics. They make me cry.
Sunday, January 31, 2010
When I think back on my childhood, my most vivid memories are of the time I spent at Bit & Spur stables. I spent most of my summers there, riding horses, cleaning stalls, helping with birthday parties, and just hanging around the barn. It was a great way to spend the day, and I had a real love affair with those horses. I've ridden as an adult, too, taking lessons in LA and even jumping some in Long Beach. So now it seems only fitting that my girls are taking an interest in horses, too. Today we went to a stable in Chelsea and let them take a riding lesson. Of course they loved it and have now been bitten by the horse bug! And, as expected, I felt myself wanting to get back in the saddle, too.
Monday, January 25, 2010
The girls are involved in a lot of activities these days. Too many, probably. It's a difficult balance, because I want them to explore their interests and figure out what they like. I also want to encourage them to stick with things when they make a commitment. And I try to push them in certain directions, knowing that I always regretted my lack of athletic ability and thought that perhaps I could have been at least average if only I'd had some lessons and practice when I was younger. So, all those many thoughts jumbled together, along with two little girls who are excited about trying new things, have resulted in a very busy schedule: church (twice a week), ballet, gymnastics, tennis, Daisies twice a month, talent show rehearsals, and soon horseback riding. We've talked about dropping gymnastics, but there are other things they want to try. It's exhausting. I know that we'll need to make some decisions before next year, when homework will become more of an issue. I hope they'll continue to dance (their dance instructor is already talking to them about being on the mini-competition team, so that would be an even greater commitment). And I hope they'll keep playing tennis. I love watching them on Saturday mornings. Abby still has a great backhand, and Sarah is really good at the volley. They're starting to move to the ball, and can easily hit it over the net from anywhere on the court.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Yesterday, Abby lost her other top front tooth. I can't believe how fast this is happening - where is my baby?? One of Sarah's top teeth is loose (barely), and she is wiggling it as much as she can. It makes her sad to see things happening for Abby first, but she's actually handling it pretty well. I've assured her that her teeth will eventually fall out, and that will be her time to celebrate alone. I have been pleasantly surprised that Abby hasn't been boastful around Sarah, despite her extreme happiness!
Last night Abby wrote the tooth fairy a note and asked if she could keep this tooth. The Tooth Fairy left her a dollar and said that she could keep this one, but she couldn't keep anymore because they were needed in the T.F.'s special Abby