Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!!!!

This little kitty is ready to rock & roll!!!!!!
She has been ready for Halloween since Nov1, 2008! lol

Some pre trick-or-treating pictures....

Testing out the paws.

Trying to show her 'tail'.

                                      Here it is!!!!!

A quick pic with sissy!

Can ya tell it's a little cold outside.....brrrr

Now for the fun part!

My four year old little kitty got tuckered out after about 45 minutes of trick or treating.  There are a lot of hills in our neighborhood and the houses are a little spread out.  At this stage of the game, I really don't think it is about the candy for Shea.
She enjoys the social aspect of Halloween.
She enjoys the make-up.
She enjoys looking at all the other kids in their costumes.
But, she especially enjoys this.......

Passing out candy with her daddy!!!!

BTW, we also carved pumpkins this afternoon....

Cleaning off the pumpkin.
(Shea's idea.)

Scooping out the slimy stuff!

Needing a little assistance from Mom.

And the finished pumpkin!!!!

We had a fun-filled day!
We carved some pumpkins, baked some pumpkin seeds, snagged some candy, and stayed relatively warm!!!
Oh yeah, we didn't run out of candy this year for the trick-or-treaters......phew!!!

Friday, October 30, 2009

The first child comes home for a visit!!!

Last weekend our oldest child finally came home for visit. It was his fall break. We haven't seen him since he left for school in August!  That is a LONG time!!!!  He is in his last year of college and is very busy finishing up his studies. He will be graduating in May with a degree in telecommunications.  He is actually hoping to find work with a local TV station, but who knows with this economy he may end up working at Best Buy! Six years of college does not equal a full-time retail job.....but, we will just have to wait and see.  Anyway, we were just super excited to see the boy!  Especially, Shea!!!!


She couldn't get enough of him.  She would wake Drew up first thing in the morning and then attached herself onto him all day long!  She pulled out all the stops for her brother....she danced...she sang....she colored pictures...she somersaulted....she even made him Halloween cupcakes!!!!

And gave Drew lots of hugs & kisses & silly faces!!!

But alas, the weekend seem to vanish before our eyes....
and soon we were saying our good-byes....sniff, sniff.

Hopefully we will see him over the Christmas break....???
Not sure when we will be traveling to China to bring home Avery....???
This mom is just hoping that all her kids will be together soon....???

It was a great weekend, Drew!!!  You're the best!  Love ya with all my heart!!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Christmas madness....not this year!!

A couple of days ago,  Stefanie over at Ni Hao Y'all wrote about how she was going to try  'avert Christmas craziness' this holiday season. She gave some good ideas of her own (she always has good ideas!) ,then asked for our advice for some help or suggestions for gift-buying.

 First of all....make sure you read her post and the comments! Then click on the links to access the blogs that offer cool ideas, gifts, and traditions for Christmas.  I tell ya there really is a lot of wonderful information out there in this bloggy world!!!

Secondly, I learned of a most inspiring way to keep Jesus securely ensconced in Christmas even as we are shopping for gifts for our kids and even while we are giving these gifts to our kids!!!!  Sounds amazing...doesn't it??? Maybe some of you are already doing something like this...but, for me it truly is a novel idea.   Jill from the Glen who commented on Stefanie's post....(actually hers is the first comment there)...wrote how their family ties in their gift giving with the gifts that the wise men presented to Jesus. She calls it 'a simple formula'. (I like that!!) Each of her children receives three gifts. They receive a Gold gift...which would be  the most wanted or desired gift....a Frankincense that centers on family maybe a game, puzzle, movie tickets....and the Myrrh gift is represented as a practical/usable gift....sweatshirts, socks, underwear, pajamas...And to keep the spirit of Santa alive on Christmas morning her kids find that their Christmas stockings have been filled with various little gifts and goodies. Don't ya just love this idea????

This year we are definitely on a Christmas budget.  As we are anticipating our trip to China to bring home Avery, hopefully by Christmas, we are saving furiously for this last part of our journey to her. And plus we now have five wonderful children to buy Christmas presents for!  So I really needed to get a handle on this Christmas shopping and refocus on what Christmas is really about.

Now this is the good part...
As I was sharing this 'three gifts' idea with my husband and our oldest son (who was home this weekend from college), they both liked it, really liked it and thought we should try it this year.  In fact, my husband even volunteered to help me shop for these kinds of gifts for our kids! This is huge....he hasn't helped with Christmas shopping for years.....(This alone is a gift!) Thank you Jill from the Glen!!!!!   And then to make this idea even more appealing, my husband and son thought we should wrap each type of present with distinct wrapping paper...I mean these guys were getting into this....big time.  They came up with the following: The 'Gold gift' should be wrapped in ....are you ready for paper (lol). The 'Frankincense gift' should be wrapped in green paper...not sure why, but hey, here were two guys discussing Christmas shopping and Christmas gift wrapping...who was I to question them???? And finally, the 'Myrrh gift'...since it is a practical gift, they decided it should be wrapped in practical brown paper...maybe even a brown paper bag. Yeah...probably won't let that happen...but, you get the idea...they were having fun!

Some of my ideas for gifts for my girls are:

Wild Olive T-Shirts
You really need to go check out this web's amazing! (Click here.)

'Orphaned No More' bracelets
Please check out this web site also. These bracelets are gorgeous, unique, and creative.  This mom is making these bracelets to help bring home her daughter from China. (Click here.)

Ideas for my sons:

Any thing that has to do with sports or food!!!! (they are very easy to shop for)

And finally some toy ideas for the little ones:

                                                        Writing Fun

                                                          Hide N' Seek Chocolates

                                                   Super Building Set

                                            Stack & Count Layer Cake

                                         Magnetic Learning Calendar


I can't wait to begin  shopping with my husband!!!!!...I feel like my perspective is in a better place....I am anticipating this shopping season with more Joy and more Jesus in my heart!!!

Merry Christmas!  ( a little early)

Friday, October 23, 2009

One step closer.....

Yesterday we received notification from immigration that they have received our I-800 application!!!! This is exciting means we are one step closer to receiving our I-800 approval which means we are one step closer to receiving our travel approval (well,there are a few little steps before we actually get our TA...but, I won't bore you with those details) which means we are one step closer to getting our consulate appointment which means we are ONE STEP CLOSER to our sweet Avery!!!!!

Lots of us are in this waiting stage.....
....and sometimes the waiting is the hardest part of all!!!

Yet, I know in my heart that God is in control....
The wait is part of His plan for me, for us, for all of us.
He sees the whole picture, I see only part of it.
He sees the whole journey, I see only the place where I am now.....

So, I will wait....and I will trust.....His timing is always perfect!!!

Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord.
Psalm  27:14

We are coming baby girl!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

No More Teenagers in the house!!!!!

How can this be???  What will I do?  How will I function???

All because this wonderful girl

We have had a teenager in our home since 1998!!!!! And more....well, at least not for another 8 years, but hey, who's counting???

Happy 20th Birthday, my darling girl!!!!  My 'first' joy, oh how you have blessed my life!  I thank God for you every day!!!!

I told myself I wasn't going to get all emotional, however as I am sitting here typing this post....I am remembering....

I am remembering that twenty years ago at this moment I was happily, blissfully, holding my baby girl in my arms....marveling at this tiny little creature....her perfect little nose....her perfect little legs, toes, fingers....everything about her was  perfect!

I am remembering that feeling of total awe and wonder....feeling so blessed and wondering if I was worthy of such a gift....

I am remembering that I also made a total fool of myself while my precious little girl was entering this world...
She was delivered by c-section.  I was quite 'drugged' up...I was rambling on and on and on....just ask my husband.  I was positive that we were having another boy.  We already had two and I was pretty sure that we were going to have three sons.  (Which was totally fine with me.)  The baby was delivered...the doctor proclaimed it a 'girl' and I did not believe him...(this is where the drugs really kicked in)...I said something like: "Are you sure? Maybe you should check again?"  This kind and very patient doctor said something like this: "My dear woman, I have delivered a ton of babies.  I know the difference between boys and girls." But, me being still very 'drugged' up asked once again:  "Are you sure?" My husband, now completely mortified and embarrassed by my stupidity questions said something like:  "Chris, WE HAVE A DAUGHTER...stop talking and just hold our little girl!"

Yes indeedy, I had a little girl....and my life has never been the same!!!!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Pumkin Patch Field Trip

This was one excited little girl!!!
Her pre-kindergarden class went
on a field trip earlier this week to
the 'Pumkin Patch'!!!

Shea loves going to any pumpkin farm...
She just plain loves those crazy orange things....

The bag in her hand was for the perfect pumpkin.....

"Where should  I go?   Where should I go??  So much few pumpkins!!!  Hey, how did that boy get in front of me on me?...I better hurry up!"

"Finally found one....'s kinda heavy!"

"Now, I gotta put my pumpkin into this here wagon....."

"Time for a rest! Whew!!!"

After finding the 'perfect' pumpkin, we all walked through a very muddy corn maze. I could barely keep Shea (AND MYSELF) from slipping in the mud....sorry no pictures....too dangerous.....
Then we rode on a wagon through the fields and forest...I completely forgot about taking pictures...
And then finally, the kids got a chance to play and run...I have a few pictures of Shea on the teeter-totter...

And then of course, one last pose!

Monday, October 12, 2009 October...for real?????

Yes, I said snow!  I'm not too thrilled about it...

But this little girl was quite ecstatic about the first snow fall of the season!

Trying to catch a snowflake.....

And of course, the famous 'eating of the snow'. (At least it was new snow and therefore, hopefully, clean snow.)

Step 1
The gathering of the intended snow-snack.....

Step 2
...and the actual first bite....mmmm....yummy!

I think this is a much better snack!  PBJ on crackers!!!

And, I also think it's gonna be long winter!!!!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Can you say Hummer?

I had a very interesting conversation with my son the other day.....

....this son, our second child, our first child to graduate from college, (this December..!),the kid who is interning at ESPN radio......who's mom is fervently praying that they hire him.....

Phone call conversation from last between his morning classes-

Scott:    Hey mom, how's it going?
Me:      Just fine sweetie, what's up?
Scott:   Well, Lisa just called ( his boss at ESPN radio). She wanted to know if I could
            do media day for *professional football team* up in *city where they play * today.
Me:      Wow, that sounds great...what an opportunity.
Scott:   Yeah....but, I have more classes today....I have a paper due tomorrow and I need
            to take a test later.
Me:      Oh, bummer.
Scott:    I told Lisa I would check into it, talk to my professors, let them know the situation.
            Then call her back.
Me:      Sounds fair to me....let me know what happens.

Few minutes later....

Scott:   Hey Mom, my professors totally understood and gave me an extension to get my
            paper done and to take my test later this week.
Me:     Good for you, what did Lisa say???
Scott:  "Terrific, I send over the hummer."
Me:     What?????? What hummer???
Scott:   (laughing) The ESPN hummer.  A driver is coming to my school to pick me up in the
            ESPN hummer!
Me:      That is some perk!
Scott:   Yeah...pretty cool!  But, I am not really dressed the best for something like this.  I
            wore an old t-shirt, jeans, and a baseball cap to school today.
Me:      Oh my!
Scott:   So, I went into the bathroom, ran water on my head, combed my hair with my
            fingers, then called Lisa and asked her to also send an ESPN polo for me to wear.
Me:      Definitely...hey if she can send over a hummer, what's a little polo shirt????
Scott:   (laughing) Yeah for real.

Way to go Scott!  I am so proud of you!!!!