Thursday, May 29, 2008

We're packing up and going to Branson for the weekend! Here we thought we were going to be quietly working on school things and not have much going on for a while. Buddy has some work to do there so we'll get to tag along. Originally, it was going to be tomorrow as usual, until after church. But last night we got a phone call from him on his way home saying we could go TODAY! Needless to say, the kids are thrilled and want to go NOW! I've got some things to pull together and we'll be off.

So far, we're doing well on our "summer school" schedule- eating breakfast and doing school in the am, doing our "special", some small project, and plenty of play time. Monday we got our books and did errands, Tuesday was library day and the kids were excited to start their school work. Yesterday, they were a little more reluctant, but we got it done and done well. We had a surprise play date with Zach and Gariella, friends for the past 4 years. We were close to not getting our science project done, but squeezed it in at the end! We were talking about air pressure and how it's pushing on us all the time, we just don't realize it. So, the experiment was putting a child in a trash bag with their head sticking out, using a vacuum cleaner to such the air out of the trash bag, and letting them "see" air pressure. Surprisingly, Catherine wanted to try, too. Quick, easy, not messy and educational all in one!
Today we'll do school on the way and take some for tomorrow, which will help with waiting for Buddy to finish his job. I'm hopeful we can go play in the lake and enjoy the beautiful weather! 1st time this year in the water, so we're excited!

Monday, May 26, 2008

First real day of summer break

Today in honor of summer, we shed the shaggy doo for Samuel. He has the thickest hair and it grows sooo fast! We tried to see how big we could make it before we saw how small we could make it! Here's the before...

...And here's the after... Notice the unhappy grimace on the before and the beaming smile on the after. It was so cute to hear his giggle once he saw his new look! For the summer, shorter is better, for sure. The best part? He doesn't have to comb it or really wash it (or so he thinks!)

My sweet children spent the morning picking up things that had been not taken care of during the last week of not feeling totally perky, and filled bags with toys, books, and stuffed animals to bless other children with. Don't they look like sweet angels? and so they are!

We're trying to plan our summer so we have plenty of fun activities during the weeks. So far, we have the idea of a library day, play date day, a science experiment day, a babysitter day, a special outing day each week. I've got 2 science books, plenty of craft supplies, some school curriculum they didn't finish during the year, and a list of things from my friend Denise. That should do it for us for a while.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Garage sale part 2a/ Thank God for Mom!

Ok, so you're probably waiting to find out the good news on the sale. Well, it didn't happen. Samuel had gotten sick on Tuesday, stayed home Wed. and Thurs, Catherine came home Thurs. dragging. So, when mom came Thursday afternoon, she stayed while I did a quick errand and came home to make dinner. Buddy came home from work feeling a little off and I started feeling bad, so instead of heading out to post signs, I headed to soak in the tub. I got to bed but got sick during the night, as did Catherine. Mom was there to do laundry during the night and hold heads! She stayed with me the next day while I slept and Buddy worked. We did receive some donations Friday, which I was so thankful for. We just couldn't pull it off.
So for now, the sale is postponed until further notice since we'll be going to Branson next weekend and trying to find some good family camping in on another weekend while we're waiting for some news.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Caleb's new trick

While I was in bed recovering, mom was here helping me and the kids were helping Caleb with a new trick! Now to teach when that's appropriate!

video

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Another week gone by

I really need to get some pictures posted, still! OK. somehow, today I will.
So how did things go last week? Thanks for asking. Catherine was so excited about her graduation, singing her songs over and over. She prefers her crocs to any shoes and those of you who know her know I should take more control in her clothing choices but have yet to take it on, preferring her independence and slight mismatches to a melt down if things need to be changed. (Of course, all that could be avoided if we put our clothes out the night before.) ANYWAY, all that to say, I had to make a last minute trip to buy her some new shoes since her others were too small. Just in time, she had a new pair of sparkly pink shoes! She did great and the battery held up on the video camera. Grandma was there, which made it extra special. Caleb did really well even with it being so late. There were some people behind us who were talking to him and trying to get him to smile. The paci really kept him quiet, but I took it out so he could smile at them. He let out the loudest screech! Every child in that group of graduates will have a special way to remember Caleb when they watch their dvd!
Friday I got to help the 2nd graders with their Indian history projects. I was the official Navajo necklace helper. The kids were really fun to talk to. Even though it wasn't Samuel's class, I got to see kids who were with him last year and whom he plays with this year. Saturday we went to the zoo and played for a while. There was a really cute girl there and Catherine played with her. She happened to be 3. Wow, great visual of Hannah for me. Sometimes I forget she's not coming to us in a cute little bundle,
Sunday was mom's party and boy, was she surprised! It was a lot of fun to see her shock and see her enjoying herself. Dad was pretty pleased, which was also fun to see. Monday was fairly quiet, which was nice, then yesterday I helped Catherine's class in the morning with their all sports day, did the 2nd grade's ice cream party in the afternoon. In between I called Robin to find out the ROG scoop and found out the people responsible for either moving things along or for letting us know what's happening are out of the country, she thinks. I was glad to hear nothing on our part had gone awry and hope those wonderful people will remember to check voicemails and emails AND respond.
After I got done with Robin, I hurried to pick up S & C only to find Samuel had gotten sick. So that was my afternoon, evening and into the night. Boy, did I wish I had an extra set of arms, elastic ones would have been even better!
So, Samuel is missing out on his last project, class cook out and year book signing party. He was able to watch the same Veggie Tales video his class was watching in Bible, though. I got a pic of the whole 2nd grade and Catherine's teacher was getting one of the kindergarteners. I want to take them to ROG with us when we go with all the goods we will buy with the money they raised.
In a bit I'm off to do Catherine's ice cream party. The fun just keeps going! However,, onlt one more day of school and I'll have a 3rd and 1st graders!
We're finishing up the garage sale Friday am. so I have to get busy making signs and getting things organized again. I'm SOOOO glad we're not pricing things! Mom will once again be helping me, so we'll have fun. Anything that's left is going to Good will or someone who will pick it up. no more garage sales for me! This is more than I've done in the past 5 years, I'm sure.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Update

How did the past week fly by so quickly? Let's see...
Friday, Samuel's field trip to Woolaroc. Hadn't been there since before I met Buddy. Got a little lost with my good friends Shawn and Sheli, but Caleb got a longer nap, so it was fine with me. Indian history and artifacts, wild animals and baby animals. Samuel wanted to get rocks as his souvinere. A true boy!
Saturday, tried to be productive in the am, play dates for Catherine and Samuel in the afternoon, Get together at mom and dad's for a mother's day/Buddy's birthday/mom's birthday event. Lots of fun and home late.
Sunday after breakfast in bed (I was all alone and felt a bit sad until I realized I was ALL ALONE!!! Ahhh), beautifully done by my sweet Buddy along with a dozen pink roses, church, trip to the park where we saw Charissa and family leaving, got a little nap, mom and dad came over for a bit.
Monday I picked up the change from the classes and we took it to the bank. They know us well from all the notarizations and change runs! We had right at $780!!! Catherine's class got 1st with $300 and Samuel's was 2nd for his grade. My friend Jenn gave us some goodie bags for the 2nd place classes, so Samuel was cool with it. Thanks Jenn!
Tuesday Catherine informed me she didn't want me to go to her end of the year party because she wanted tro hang out with someone else. You can imagine the hurt feelers that came out. I did ask who she wanted to hang out with and it was her teacher! (She does have an awesome teacher) I'm going anyway.
Yesterday, Amanda and I spent part of the day cleaning mom and dad's house. Mom always keeps her house much neater than mine, but I wanted her to finish school for the year and have a nice clean house to relax in and not have to think about it for awhile. Caleb got his first tooth! No wonder he's been a bit out of sorts. This is 2 months later than the 1st 2 kids. He certainly seems to want to take his time on everything! In the last week, he finally started to sit up for a few minutes by himself if he has toys in front of him. Yes, he is 8 months now.
Today Caleb has a Dr's appt to check up on his weight gain, then I go help with Samuel's class for a few hours, then tonight my baby girl graduates kindergarten! She wants Buddy to clap and whistle as loud as he can and for me to cheer loudly, too. She's so excited to be on stage!

Tomorrow is C's field trip and end of the year party.
I think we'll work in the flower beds and yard for the weekend.
Next week holds more fun for us, but hopefully not quite so much each day! Their last day is Thursday and we'll finish our garage saling adventure Friday am. (We're still accepting donations for the sale!) I'll be so glad to park my car inside again!!!
I have pictures of our week and will get them posted, but thought there should be SOME kind of update for you all!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

What a day!

Today was very special for us. First of all, Buddy was able to take the kids to school, which they thought was awesome. Then, Buddy, Caleb and I drove 2 hours to get our fingerprints done! Amazing that it only took 20 minutes from entering the building to leaving to finish it up. I was really expecting the whole ink thing, but they made us wash with something that smelled like oranges, put on Corn Huskers lotion (anyone else remember that?) and then it was computerized. Where have I been? They hadn't had anyone else adopting from ROG come in before, so that was kind of cool. Then rush home to get the kids from Amanda's (thanks a million A!) and get ready for our guest.

This is Anna and she's from Georgia! A live person to help us muddle through the wonders of learning a new language. She was so kind and willing to help. It was funny, though to hear her rattle things off in a second that took Buddy and I 5 seconds to painfully butcher. We really appreciated the time she took to share her country, her life and the yummy dessert! We look forward to many more times together. God sent us someone who is a sister in the Lord, enjoys the same ministries we do, has a heart for orphans, and who facinated Caleb! God's so good!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Somewhere out there...

Do you remember that song? "Somewhere out there beneath the pale moon light someone's thinking of me and loving me tonight. Somewhere out there if love can see us through, we'll find one another. Somewhere out there, out where dreams come true." We sang it in HS choir.

Yesterday I had a few moments where I felt sorry for myself and our family- we didn't get to celebrate with Hannah. That's what I really wanted when we first found her- have her by her birthday. (Course, that was when we thought 06-05 meant June 5th, not May 6th and when I was thinking about paying for a plane ticket for her!!!) We all sang to her in the morning, on Samuel's suggestion ate pizza because it was a special occassion, sang agan when Buddy got home, and watched more Planet Earth. (a few parts are a bit grizzly for my little girl, so we turn down the volume, fast forward and prepare ahead of time when we figure out what's about to get torn into bits.)

Really, I wanted to have my little girl in my arms and celebrate with her. Truth is, she doesn't know any differently, sad as that may be. Who am I to think that I could be the one who is the end all, be all for her and make her day? Yes, having a family would be a great present, and still will be, just not on our time frame. God is her Father and has taken care of and loved her long before I knew who she was. He sings over her, holds her in the palm of His hand, knows the plans for her future! I forgot to trust Him for a while yesterday. I was thinking about the orphans of the world and the horrible plight of the homeless children and felt so small and overwhelmed by all there is to be done. No, I can't save them all and don't have the money to give to everyone in need. But I CAN obey and start with one. I'm thankful He has preserved her and placed her in a great foster family, which is a wonderful transition. Again, it's going to be wonderful when we sit back and look at how He caused everything to fall perfectly in place.

I read something yesterday about waiting on the Lord and how our hope is in the Lord. I also heard a pastor talking about how when we are in the waiting stages in life, God is preparing us and the people or things we'll experience. If we try to rush ahead, we'd mess things up. He knows! He's got it all planned out and if we just relax, obey and continue in faith, WOW! will He make it so much better than we thought!

Catherine told me this morning that we didn't do much for fun for Hannah's birthday. I asked her what she would suggest. "Go get Hannah." In good time we will do just that! She has changed her prayer from "And God, help us to get Hannah tomorrow" to "help Hannah come home the first day of summer."

In the meantime, we'll just keep working on learning Georgian and finishing up projects that need to be done.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Celebrations

What started as a quick bath for Caleb ended up like this...
It's so nice to have kids who love each other!

This has been will be a fun past/next few days. Saturday, my brother's family, ours and my parents went out to eat at a great Mexican resteraunt called Ted's to celebrate my parents
40 years of marraige!!! Thanks, mom and dad, for being an awesome example of commitment and growth. We kept hoping Buddy would finish up work in time to join us, but not so. So, we had 5 adults and 6 six kids ages 7 1/2 months to 12 yrs. (What happened to "never let the children out number the adults?) While we were waiting to go in, Vince Gill and the band piled out of a limo and ended up sitting 2 tables away. Alas, no pics! We did get a most-of-the-family photo, which I might try to photo shop to include Buddy. =0)During dinner, since Catherine was extremely hungry, she inhaled her food and then came over to my mom and said she felt "a little chokey." So off to the bathroom we ran, where we sat on the floor waiting. Nothing happened in the stall, but soon I heard a crying child entering the restroom and knew it was Caleb. Why, oh why did I not bring a paci? He was our dinner music off and on.
Samuel and Gabriel are quite the characters when they are together and have a difficult time eating without goofing around. Notice what Samuel decided to do to help pass the time while we were waiting for our food to be served. How nice of Ted's to provide unlimited tortillas!

11 years ago Sunday, Buddy asked me, on this very bench, to marry him (we think! there are 3 benches in close proximity and it's hard to recall, amidst all the emotions, the very one.) Just look what happened in 11 years!

Buddy had a birthday today, but since the kids thought we should celebrate when we had more time together, we celebrated yesterday. Then they decided we should write a note to excuse him from work today! He'll be home early, so we'll have to settle for that. We made his favorite meal along with some awesome chocolate cake- eggless and milkless for all the allergy conscious, which we're not. It just happened to be a cake I could make quickly without a box mix on hand.

Tomorrow Hannah Joy will be 3! Oh, how we wish we could be celebrating with her. The good news is that this is the last birthday she will ever be without her forever family. I think that's a good way to think about the waiting- the last May she'll be without us, the last Mother's Day she'll not be with her mom, etc. Happy Birthday, sweet girl!!! We're coming as fast as we can!!!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Connections

This is so exciting! I found out that there is someone here in town who is from Georgia! She's been here for a while and is a friend of a former business associate. (Did you get that?) Anyway, Ginny told her what we're doing and she's so happy for us. I emailed her yesterday and hope to hear from her soon. We'd enjoy getting to know her, being an extended "family" and learning the language from someone who knows, not just guessing from our Survival Georgian book! I didn't learn phonics and it's stumping me!

Then, I was talking with a client yesterday and the daughter of a lady she works with was in Georgia ith the Peace Corp for 2 years. She's back in town now and I would so like to get to know her.

So sweet how that came about. God is good to Hannah and to us.

On that front, no news on our progress. We are truly in the wait and see stage of this, which is fine because I think we're going to get another house project done soon! I told Buddy today that if I could, I'd do all of them myself. I try to be very patient, hopefully I am.

There is always education to do, so on to our courses!