Friday, October 30, 2009

how long must we sing this song...

OK....so Keith and I decided we wanted to adopt again like in August of 2007. It feels like this is the interminable adoption that will never end. Seriously. First we had to wait a year after our wedding so that ALabama would approve us...then Kyrgyzstan closed down and we waited a while on that and then paperwork...it just is feeling like a chore and it is not the awesome exciting fun it should be. I am hoping that when things really start moving it will be fun again.

In the meantime...I get to live vicariously though others and I am excited to do that! Sometime...hopefully soon....we will emerge from the abyss of waiting and gathering and regathering paperwork. UGG.

In the meantime we all dressed up on Wed night for trunk or treat at church and I do believe some pictures were actually taken..which will be posted with the halloween post.
Tomorrow is Lilianna's halloween party and I have a bunch of frosting and decorating to do. Must get on it!

Just thought I would take a minute to complain ... now I am all better!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

I am officially old

I am sitting in the call room watching a made for Hallmark movie on middle aged professionals who go to their 20th high school reunion and fall back in love. Ok first of all....I am old just for watching this dribble and, of course, liking it. Secondly...the flashback sequences are like from when I was in high school...these middle aged protagonists are my contemperaries...I am sorry but were the bangles "walk like an egyptian" really from that long ago.

I totally don't have personal assistant...I am never going back to a high school reunion!

The kids this week...

I really need to start taking more pictures...this may be my new year's resolution when we get there!

Lilianna has been taking singing lessons for the last 3 weeks and totally loves it. She is having a recital sometime in the spring - her teacher puts songs on a cd and we listen to it and sing in the car a we drive places. The first song she worked on was "Tomorrow" from Annie...which she loves. Zeb loves it too and he belts out the song louder than you can imagine...it is sooooo funny to hear him singing "tomorrow...tomorrow lubluuh tomorrow". I think he loves to sing at least as much as Lilianna. L has also been doing really good with her behavior at school...always an issue for a spunky, chatty, energetic little lilianna. She got her report card last week and they now get letter grades and she got an A in conduct...granted it was a 90%...but an A is an A! One of her vocabulary words this week was "chatty". We have her make up sentences to help her with the words...and the sentence for chatty was "I am very chatty". It was the most accurate sentence she has come up with for any vocabulary word!

Zeb is talking sooo much better. Now HE is chatty and with words we can understand about 60% of the time. He stiill drops off the last consonent of a lot of words...but we are working on it. He is also figuring out that we are serious about good manners and using Please and thank you...he is great with the thank you's but the please's have been a challenge. He also got a new sponge bob bed tent to try to help him go to sleep at night. He is still very unhappy with going to bed. Part of the reason is that by the time we get to bed he is soooo tired. He doesn't climb into the crib at all...but he does sometimes end up sleeping on the floor next to it. I think the bed tent is helping though...it was a great idea I stole from another blogger! He runs around like a little boy these days instead of a toddler...at church he is always racing behind Lilianna saying "I wanna go wit leeeeleeee". S o cute!

Benjamin got his first haircut this week. J, one of our babysitters across the street is a hairstylist and has been dying to cut his hair...and dying to cut it all spikey...so Benjamin has spikey little hair. I think J puts styling gel in it every day when we take him over there! He is finally starting to look less like a baby and more like a toddler. He is walking a little but he still prefers to crawl...he is sneakier that way and can get into more trouble! He has been running a fever for the last day and a half...I figure he is on his way to flu-city. We are just giving him tylenol and motrin and lots of fluids. No other symptoms yet...although he seems a little run down.

O had open house this week too and he is sooo just like his dad! His journal at school was all about being a scientist and rocket designer. I joked that Keith and O could build a weather balloon and we could launch it from the back yard....no kids allowed in it though! Unfortunately, a weather balloon isn't as cool as a rocket so no takers on that idea.

parents....who really cares about us! haha. I am still looking for a job and soon I am sure I will post in despair at the job prospects! I am still holding it together at this point though. Keith is busy planning the new ginormous, over the top as only he can do it....playground. We staked out how much of the backyard it will take up and it is like our entire backyard. Go big or Go home - that's my husband!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Extremely Disturbed

Ok....I am upset and extremely disturbed by the whole Somer Thompson story. I know it should be disturbing and upsetting anytime a child disappears...but I have seen lots of new stories about young children disappearing and turning up murdered and while they have all been sad...for some reason this one really upsets me.

I think it is because I can almost see the scenario of her walking with her brother and older sister and them picking on her or something and her storming off. Now she is dead and how guilty and terrible must her brother and sister feel...would this have happened if she had been walking in a group with her brother and sister...probably not.

I am not sure why I have been very affected by this particular terrible news story...I just was.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Phone call...

So I am on call...and I am not feeling so hot. So, I was taking a little mid afternoon nap (as we can do at Children's because we are totally superfluous over here) and my phone rang from an area code I didn't recognize and it was one of the volunteer coordinators from Beacon House.

She wanted to get a sense of how close we are to having our paperwork done....we are soooo close. We really are close - I have our entire dossier ready in the appropriately marked file folders...except for 3 things:
1. Keith's medical
2. Our new notarized homestudy update
3. our I797

I emailed her our homestudy stuff so she could email it to Beacon House....because....Romana is working on referrals today. OK...now can you really drop the R bomb on a PAP and not expect her little heart to get hopefull. I had to talk myself down.

Our homestudy update is still at DHR...they were working on it today though because my SW had called them to see if they had received it and she said she was working on it right now. So we will know ...maybe this week if they will increase our approved children.

Then we wait for USCIS to process our ammended I797. I hope that doesn't take too long. Then we are done....

Oh wait.....Keith still has to go to the doctor....(cry of anguish). Ok that was a little dramatic! As soon as we have our homestudy and Keith's medical we can send our dossier and then really start to wait for THE phone call.

It was umm...impossible to go back to sleep because I had that "is this the phone call" adrenalin rush kicking.

I am getting a tad optimistic.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

SO Sad!

I don't consider myself a voyeur...but there are some blogs I love to follow because I find these people's lives completely amazing and inspiring! Some of them, I barely know - I may have emailed them a couple of times or even talked on the phone to them once or twice.

I like to follow the blog of a woman, who is the HIV+ coordinator for AAI. She has a super amazing life and family and has really just stepped out on faith, and I find glimpses into their life not only inspiring...but kind of instructional. They have lost of kids and we are on our way to having lots of kids so it is sooooo helpful to see how she does things. Honestly, there are some things I could come up with by myself...but why shouldn't I learn from others too?

Anyway...this morning I clicked on the link to her blog and it was password protected. I was so sad because I have learned a lot from her and I will miss her posts on large families and I will miss her posts on living with HIV+ kids. I totally understand the desire to keep family goings on in the family...and I am totally like a tv viewer or something. But I will miss reading their blog!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mail

Guess whose homestudy is going to DHR tomorrow for approval? It took 5 days last time....we shall see what happens. We have been on a 5 month spending spree and have definitely not saved up the money we needed to save up. So I need to hit the moonlighting circuit in a big way. Theoretically, we could be waiting on our updated I797 by this time next week. Of course, DHR could take up to 2 months to make a decision and then they may not even approve the changes and send it back for more documentation. In any case...something is happening...now I get to wait for something new....which is always exciting.

We also had our first orphan care/adoption ministry meeting at church tonight and 6 people showed up...which was far and away more than I expected. It was really great - I could not have asked for it to go better.

Job search.....again....anyone know an anesthesiology group near Birmingham that wants a new graduate with a heart for orphans? I didn't think so.....UG!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Rainy saturday

ok...we found the camera...but didn't bring it with us on our rainy saturday trip to the Galleria (Mall). We figured we would kill some time...eat some lunch at the food court and maybe play some ping pong at the crazy ping pong, pool table, pinball store...and we did all of those things. But we also spent $30 and let O, Zeb and Lilianna jump on the bungy-trampoline monster in this picture....of course it was inside the mall not in the parking lot.
O went first and was hesitant at first then started jumping pretty hard. Lilianna talked about doing it for weeks...she wanted to do it the last time we were at the mall. There was a little girl (like a 3 yr old) jumping when we got there and the carnie (for lack of a better word!) was grabbing the little straps on her harness and pulling her down hard so she would sproing way up into the air....Lilianna saw that and made the carnie promise that he would not touch her harness thing. It was totally funny. She started jumping out really slow and low and the carnie guy kept surreptitiously raising up the bungie arms so she wouldn't notice it....until Lilianna was jumping as high as the second story of the mall. I will be honest....I didn't think she would do it. As soon as he was putting the harnass on...she got that terrified look of backing out that she can get when faced with something new. My little girl is not much of a risk taker at this stage in her life! But she did it and she did great.

Zeb on the other hand.....is a little daredevil. He spent the entire time jumping as high as mechanically possible and squealing with delight. The carnie guy tried to show Zeb how to do flips but he didn't quite catch on to that. Zeb had the entire rail on the 2nd story filled up with spectators going.."Oh how cute". We will definitely have to keep our eye on him!

If only we had the camera!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

#912

Reason 912 I love my husband. I just remembered I was totally out of gas in my car and am not so sure I will make it to the gas station in the morning on my way to work.

Keith had 5 gallons of gas to put in the lawn mower tomorrow...and he is out putting it in my car right now.

I am soooo spoiled.

One more step!

Yeah...we got our updated background clearance from Alabama. So, now we are one step closer. Last time (In February) our homestudy approval only took 5 business days....the say to allow 2 months...so I am guardedly optimistic.

Has anyone ever had referral envy? You know...where you read of someone who just got their referral (s) and you are happy for them and at the same time you may want to have a pity party....I am not saying that happened to me on Monday....but you know...it can happen.

I also made up a little music gadget for my blog...I haven't decided if I should post it or not. I don't want anyone to be all busted at work for looking at my blog by the big sound of Brooke Fraser singing "Albertine"...but I love that song! So beware...it may be coming soon!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Pretend this is dated September 30th.......

So today is September 30th.......and Benjamin took his first steps. Yeah! We were sitting in the boys' room before bed. Keith always reads a Thomas the Train story before bed and the kids jockey for my lap or crawl around and pretend they are dogs....don't ask!

Bejamin just stood up holding onto my hands and then let go. His eyes got super big (which is saying a lot because this boy has some great big blue peepers) and he took about 5 steps. Then he looked at his hands and said something loud (who knows what it was!) and he sat down.

So I scooped him up and everyone said yeah Ben. For the next 10 minutes or so he would stand up and start clapping. So he has been doing 2-3 step things all week and yesterday......the first big tumble.....yeah Ben!

It was at Ms Dee's house and involved a walker, a nose, and a 2 year old Kyrgyz boy screaming....Ben's blood augh. According to Ms Dee, Zeb was very, very, very concerned about Ben's blood being on the floor. That is my little OCD, wipee toting boy. Zeb was freaking out until all of the blood was cleaned up off the floor. Neither of the boys was very concerned about the actual injury......except Mom who got the phone call at work!

I am not particularly fond of pushing, walker-y things....I personally believe they act as a crutch (like literally) so it takes longer for kids to develop their core muscles and start walking on their own. An opinion that is not so much based in literature...just based on my mommy gestalt. We don't have any.....but I am ok with them at the babysitter's house.

However, we did a bowel resection on someone last night who was on a hammock and the tree the hammock was attached to fell over on them...so everyone with a score card at home....please move hammocks attached to trees over to the random things that my kids can't do.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Ghana updates

I know I don't talk a lot about what is going on with our adoption from Ghana....and that is because nothing is going on! Haha. Actually, we have to get our background clearances redone with our new homestudy agency's name on them....and we are 2/3 there. We received Louisiana's clearance and Arizona's clearance. Now we are waiting on Alabama...aren't we always waiting on something in Alabama!

But hurray...just one more clearance to go and then I think the homestudy goes to DHR for state approval (again) and then on to USCIS to update our I600A approval. Then...we can send our dossier to Ghana. I am getting ahead of myself....I am just hoping to hear our state clearance is back sometime before Christmas. I am sure something will come up...oh they actually do want us to get refingerprinted...or something like that and we will find out about that after we wait the 8 weeks for our clearance and then we will have to wait 6 more weeks for those to clear.

However, I was sooooo frustrated when Kyrgyzstan slowed down during Zeb's adoption. I accepted his referral in March and they shut down for a month and changed the policy so I had to travel twice. I was sooo frustrated about the delay. However, without that delay, Keith would not have been able to travel with me to get him. So, as frustrating as this is...I think it all happens for a purpose and I have to practice chilling out and letting go of the things I can't control!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Together for Adoption Conference

Keith and I just got back from the Together for Adoption Conference in Franklin, Tenn and it was sooooooo completely wonderfull...I must have cried like once every hour I was there. There were so many people sharing moving stories about their adoptions or about what has motivated them for orphan care. There were a number of great exhibitors.

I will post a run down on them tomorrow...I totally need to get to sleep. I talked to so many really interesting people with so much motivation for helping orphans. It was a really invigorating weekend. It was also soooo wonderfull to see so many multiracial families in one place. I saw one woman with a little one from Uganda who had a bacpack type sling for wearing him on her back. I loved it! Speaking of Uganda...I know everyone who reads this blog has checked out amizima by now....but she has a booster club of sorts called 147 million orphans and I spent like $100 buying their super cute things.

It was kind of like seeing the rock stars of orphan care and adoption ministries in person. I met people from Project Hopefull, from the Abba Fund, from Focus on the Family, from Show Hope. It was really fun.

Anyway, I will write more on it tomorrow after I get some sleep! It was really great. I am renewed!

Karyn Purvis Insights and Gifts - sharing power