Tuesday, November 30, 2010

3 'Mounth' DTE

3 Month DTE, and no exclamation marks this month. It has been pretty uneventful with our agency pretty much at a stand-still for the last month. Unfortunately, one of the main feeder orphanages is going through a re-licensing process which has cause many families to be stuck in limbo until the certification is complete. Which causes us little people underneath them to also be stuck in limbo. As no new babies can be brought in while there are still babies who haven't been able to pass court and go home yet...

However, one month more of waiting means one more month closer to seeing Olivia, so we still celebrated, albeit a few days late.

The flavor of the month, chosen by Addison was:

New York Super Fudge Chunk

Yummmmmy. As you can clearly see..
This, my friends, has got to be THE messiest priss pot there is. Every meal ends up on her clothing, hands, arms, toes, you name it. But as I said in the last post - chocolate makes us happy!!!

Monday, November 29, 2010

It all comes back to chocolate or Charlie Brown

Just for fun since I still haven't found my writing ability. Although I did shorten the quiz a bit as I was getting long-winded:

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? I can't say I've ever had Egg Nog but just the thought of drinking eggs kinda makes me throw up a little in my mouth. You can also hold the hot chocolate. In the way of coffee, I'm in chocolatey heaven with just enough Mint Chocolate Truffle to turn the color from black to a beautiful caramel. A little coffee with my cream please. (with a Lactate on the side) And I have to say I am committing adultery on my old love affair with Peppermint Mocha. But Mr. Truffle now has my heart.

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? Santa declines to wrap the Wages gifts. Primarily because Santa is a cheap scape who buys most of her gifts from consignment sales. So if they are never wrapped but always open, one can always pass good-as-new as brand-spankin-new. It's just easier on the elves all the way around. Cuts down on production costs.

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? white. white. white. On the tree, cause I love to lay on the couch, take a lactate, drink a mug full of mint flavored cream, and watch the stars twinkle. Stars just don't twinkle in red and green, it just ain't right. And that goes for outside icicles as well. If I saw ice hanging from my roof in shades of red, I would be wondering what nice Southerner shot Rudolf on my rooftop. It just ain't right..

4. Do you hang mistletoe? There is no need. We needed medical intervention to stop this baby producing mill.

5. When do you put your decorations up? The weekend after Thanksgiving. Although at the moment half opened boxes are littered all around my house as my children have decided that their mother is either too lazy or too slow to actually get the house decorated. So the children's rooms are decked the halled. The rest of my house, not so much. Unless you count two empty Christmas tree boxes in front of my fireplace and bubble wrap sprinkled all around.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? turkey stuffing. Yummmmm. Why we only make it 2 times a year is beyond me?

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? making the rounds at all the grandparent's houses and being given MnMs and chocolate covered cherries. Due to divorce and healthy grandparents, we were able to know 3 sets of grandparents and 3 sets of great-grandparents. That's a lot of MnMs to be had.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I thought I had things figured out in 4th grade until we were in the middle of building a house, living off of hot dogs and bologna sandwiches. When I got a new bike from Santa - I KNEW he had to be real cause that bike must have costed at least $500!! (says the 4th grader with no concept of money)

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Not normally. Although I've picked up the tradition of giving the kids p.j.'s on Christmas Eve. Just cause I like cute Christmas morning pictures vs. pics of my scrawny boys hanging out of hand-me-down boxers.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? I've given each kid's room it's own tree to reduce all child interaction with my piece of art. Hey, don't judge me. I can smile at their Charlie Brown trees and smile at my carefully spaced holiday masterpiece.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it? Loved it as it makes it's way to the Carolinas so infrequently that it is awesome to see how much joy my kids get out of a few stray flakes. Even better, last year's South Carolina blizzard came in one night, was enough to make snow men out of - and was gone by the next afternoon when the kids were playing in short sleeves. It's like a drive thru version of Frosty the snowman.

12. Can you ice skate? Coordination is not my strong suit. If you count standing up and then skidding on your rear, yes - I can skate. Just not on my feet.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? a couple years back Tony gave me a charcoal portrait of Seth drawn by our artist friend Noah. He was about 3 and it made me cry. First present to ever make me cry but I loved it.

14. What's the most important thing about the Holidays for you? the babe in a manger that grew up to be my Daddy. The answer is always Jesus.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? do I have to choose just one? Although you can't go wrong with anything chocolate - I love the icebox fruit cake rolls my mom and I make. It's fruit cake with no cake involved, but lots of powdered sugar, graham crackers, and cherries.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? giving my kids ornaments every year that reflect their interests. They could care less, but I love doing it. And they love their personalized, self-decorated Charlie Brown trees.

17. What is your favorite Christmas Song? Mercy Me's version of Angels we have Heard on High. It's a song headache all season long.

18. Candy Canes: Yuck or Yum? could really care less. Unless they are ground and mixed with chocolate. Chocolate makes everything happy.

19. Favorite Christmas Show? Charlie Brown's Christmas. His tree makes me smile. Can ya tell??

Your turn!!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

An infestation!!!!!

The other morning I woke up to a rodent infestation.

They were everywhere.

In my jean drawers...

In my p.j. drawer....

Even on my bathroom ceiling....

And a week later, they haven't moved at all....

And why do I allow these miniature critters to continue to greet me every morning??

Because it cracks me up that such a plot could have been orchastrated by such a sweet little thing as this.... it just isn't possible.....

Or such an angelic face as this.... no way would HE have planned such an attack...

Angels. My little angels. That crack me up.

Although I may need to take down the bathroom mice as visitors may not find it as funny as I do that rodents are stuck to my ceiling. Real or not.

(And Braeden's black and blue forehead and cheek - Seth hit him with the dog lead. By accident. Because he was laying on the ground. And when I called Tony to tell him that we had just narrowly avoided another ER visit -- he immediately asked "what did Braeden do???" How did he know??)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The terrible 2's strikes again

Yes, I do realize my youngest is almost 5.

I'm talkin about ME.

You know, the one who has faith God will provide for this adoption..
until the due dates for payments loom near.

You know, the one who has faith that God has the perfect daughter destined for our family..
until I get down that it is taking so long.

You know, the one who has faith that God loves me..
until bad things happen.

Bad things like lay-offs. Again. The third time in the last year. Unless I've lost count, which is possible.

Last time was the week before Christmas. At least this time we had a month to go...
Last time I had a mini temper tantrum. O.k., a big, full-out, screaming-stamping-my-feet temper tantrum.

This time I had a mini melt down. O.k., a stay-in-my-pajamas-and-avoid-all-conversation-as-I-sit-in-a-corner-and-pout temper tantrum.

Last time, God provided another job in two days. And I chastised myself for my lack of faith. I even wrote a blog about how stupid I had been.

This time, God provided another job in three days. And so I am now chastising myself for my lack of faith. And writing a blog about it. So I can once again look back later at how immature my Christian walk can be.

We had been praying for him to get a better job where he could move up and be successful enough for me to scale back my hours more when the baby gets here. His last job was quickly showing itself to be a dead end. A big, fat dead end where a boss gives you no work to do, you beg for work to do, and he assures you it will come, not to worry about loosing your job. And then he lays you off the next morning.

This job has an exciting boss who is pumped about his partnership and is planning on growing and succeeding together. Kind of like we had been praying for. And silly me for worrying about God taking away his crappy job. And having a temper tantrum. And acting like a two-year old. You would think I would learn.

Another job in three days in a bad economy. It's kind of like He has a big plan which is better than mine isn't it?? You would think I would learn....

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

What would you do?

Sunday was National Orphan Sunday. I never would have known that until this year. Orphan awareness was preached in pulpits across the country. And yet, before this past year, I was so unaware. If it isn't on the news, it didn't affect me. If it isn't on the radio, it didn't affect me. If it isn't front and forefront in your daily life - I'm guessing it doesn't affect you either.

It's so easy to get wrapped up in the need for new cleats, the need for a winter jacket, the need for another box of cereal, another gallon of milk. We have so much that we focus on that our focus becomes completely inward - with the outside world as only a shadow of reality.

Until that reality drops on your doorstep, and then it affects you.

Lately we have had parents who are visiting their children in Ethiopia reporting back about the conditions of the orphanages there. We all knew they weren't the most clean places. Happy places. Places where children are well fed and loved. We knew that. But to hear first-hand descriptions of where my daughter, may, at this moment be sleeping --- it brought me to tears several weeks ago - and it brings me to tears again today.

From another AWAA parent's blog:
"Tuesday was another one of those highly emotional days. Wow. We started off early in the morning to visit two orphanages. The first one was right down the street from our guest house, and when we got there, we realized that these were the kids we hear singing every morning!! Boy did this place grab a hold of us. We walked in to dozens of older children all sitting in a line outside. Then we went to the toddler room. As soon as I picked up the first child, I discovered that they weren’t wearing diapers and just about every one of them was wet. Their beds were soaked. Some didn’t even have mattresses because they were laying out in the sun to dry. One little boy was so scared when we came that he ran to a corner and faced the wall to be avoided. Then we visited the infant room where we saw a similar situation. No diapers, wet mattresses, 3 to 4 babies to a crib. It was heart breaking. One of the families brought diapers to donate, so the ladies immediately started putting diapers on the kids, covering mattresses with plastic and sheets, and holding each of those babies. I don’t tell you about these conditions to speak badly of the orphanage. The truth is, it’s all they have. I picked up the first baby I saw in the room, and she clung to me for dear life, crying if I tried to put her down. When I could calm her down to put on a diaper, her entire bottom was blistered. We stood crowded in that tiny room as long as our guide would allow us to stay. There were moments when I thought about all the germs, infections, and rashes I was touching, but we all decided it was more important for these children to be visited and loved than for us to get dirty. B and I also spent some time outside with the older kids and they would beg us to sit next to them in their line. When we did, they’d weave their arms through ours and hang on tight to ensure we wouldn’t get up. Some would cry if you didn’t sit by them, some would search our pockets, and one even snatched our camera. An older girl walked down the line with an old rag wiping the tears and snot from their faces all on the same spot. Needless to say, our group gave bins and bins of donations to this particular orphanage. To those who donated from home, THANK YOU! Pictures weren’t allowed, but I just wish you could see with your own eyes how needed this stuff was. You cared for the least of these on Tuesday through your generosity."

And this orphanage is, thankfully, being helped by those visiting parents. Who bought those mattresses. Who bought the plastic sheeting to wrap them. Who bought the diapers to put on those babies. And yet - the need is still so great.

And yet - this is only one orphanage in Ethiopia. In the world. That is 'lucky' enough to have a relationship with an agency which can help to support them and improve their conditions. What about the other hundreds of orphanages in Ethiopia? In the world? What about those orphans?

Often times when asked why we are adopting from Ethiopia - Tony has told them - 'if your child was sick, and hungry, and a million miles away. Wouldn't you do everything within your power to bring her home to you?'

So before this post leaves your mind and doesn't affect you at all anymore - could you take a moment, in this, National Adoption Awareness Month, to wonder what you, as one person, could do? You may not think you have room for another child. Or maybe you are too old. Or maybe you aren't called to adopt, or foster.

But you could sponsor an orphan, with Compassion International.
But you could research the possibility of adoption - our agency - America World Adoption.
But you could donate to families who are trying to do everything within their power to bring their children home. With it made easier by lists of families with items for sale for Christmas -
Shopping with a Purpose
One Stop Adoption Shop
Home for Christmas

You could do anything. As long as you do something.

"Once our eyes are opened, we can't pretend we don't know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls, knows what we know, and holds us responsible to act."
Proverbs 24:12