Friday, November 30, 2007

I can't think of a title for this one...

Well, we did get our news yesterday and it was not good. My mom, Dottie, has invasive breast cancer and will need to have surgery soon. We are in the process of finding a surgeon, so if anyone knows of a good one in our area, please contact me or leave it in the comments. We've had one doctor recommended by many, but he's just coming back after a very recent open heart surgery.

It all seems a bit unreal at the moment, but is slowly sinking in. We covet your prayers more than you could know. My dad has chemo again next week. Pray that he stays strong.

Psalm 50:15 "Call on me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you and you will glorify me."

Clinging to that hope and many others,


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

It was 1980 something...

Top, left, clockwise - my best friend growing up, Jill, her daughter Payton (13), son Tate (7), me and Piper, Ella in the middle, Kim, Jill's daughter Presleigh (10), Julie and her son Jonathon
Tate entertained Piper for the entire 2 hours.

On Friday, I got to see some very good friends that I haven't seen in a long time, my best buddies from high school and college. Jill and I became best friends in the 6th grade and she, Kim and I lived together for our first 2 years at A&M, before she left us to go to TU to be with her future husband, Matt. (I'm not bitter or anything)
Julie and I grew up in the same neighborhood and spent many a summer playing Pac Man and walking to Taco Bueno. She is now an OB/Gyn and is expecting her 2nd baby. She is in charge of planning our 20 year reunion which is NEXT YEAR - oh. my. word. How did that happen?

I have experienced a lot of life with these 3 friends. They are a part of so much of what constitutes my memory. We literally grew up together, and somehow became women with children. SO many memories. So much high school drama, experienced together. Love, break-ups, many break ups, late nights, early mornings, drill team, football games, birthdays, illness, bad perms, big hair, hot rollers, adventures of every kind, trips, college freedom, paying bills together, hours and hours and hours at the pool, discovering College station together, weddings and babies...growing up.
It was so fun to see them and their children. Keeping up these connections is important to me, and worth making the effort. The older I get, the more I appreciate these friendships that enrich my memories and form my history. I used to take it for granted that everyone had these kinds of friends to share life with, without really stopping to appreciate their impact. Since our Friday get together, I've been traveling down memory lane and having so much fun recalling things I haven't thought about for years. I pray that our kids will find lifelong friends, good friends with strong character...what a gift.
That double chin will disapear once I learn how to photoshop, that is for sure!
Our little turkey

Ella and Mandy

More Thanksgiving

Scott's mom looking at the table cloth made from everyone's handprints for her. (the great idea of my sister in law, Kristine)

Getting ready to eat!

Piper gets to know the rest of her family...

Cousin Adalee and Piper - Piper immediately LOVED Adalee, invading her personal space within minutes of meeting her!
Aunt Mica and Piper
Mama Linda giving Piper her Christmas ornament
Piper and cousin Ryleigh
Uncle Ray and Piper

Thanksgiving 2007

Ryleigh, Sydney, Hunter, Ella, and Piper

Sunday, November 25, 2007

I'm back!

No, I'm not in a food induced coma. Just switching gears from a big Thanksgiving to Christmas.
I'll post photos when I get a chance to go through them. We had a great time with Scott's 2 brothers, their oh so precious children, Scott's mom and step dad, Roman. The only one we were missing was Paul's wife, Kristine. We really missed her, but enjoyed her beautifully behaved kids, Ryleigh and Sydney immensely. Roman and Linda will head out tomorrow to go home to Wisconsin and I have a feeling I'll walk around the house for a day or so in a quiet induced trance. Oh yeah, they're not taking our children with them, maybe not.

Here is one thing I am just giddy about. Tuesday when I woke up, we had a very barren patio that faced the West. Tuesday when I went to bed, we had a gorgeous pergola that completely rocks! Roman is a builder extraordinaire who can do just about anything. Paul is an engineer, and Scott, well, he has two hands and tools. Between the 3 of them, a miraculous thing happened.

The one part of the week that was not so miraculous started at about 4 am on Thursday morning. My husband, who enjoys food like no one I know, woke up with an icky stomach thing, and spent the next day and a half in bed. He somehow crawled from the bed to the family picture, but other than a brief apperance at the Thanksgiving table, he was completely out of commission. So yesterday (Saturday) I go into the kitchen to find his mom cooking stuffing, again, so that Scott could have his Thanksgiving dinner that night. Now that's some mama love right there.

Piper met this side of her family for the first time, and after an hour or so of checking them out, decided they were pretty cool. She seems to be having a lot of fun having a full house, and especially loves Roman and Linda's black lab, Mandy. Piper gets way down on the floor right in front of her, with her lips all puckered waiting for a big kiss. Mandy has got to be the best dog ever created and puts up with anything from the kids.

When I consider what I am thankful for this year, wow, some big things come to mind. Somehow, according to God's plan, Scott and I made it half way around the world to find our daughter, in what would prove to be one of the defining moments of our lives. Since that time, we've shared more love than a person should be allowed. The sweetest of moments, and many tears of joy. When I hear the term, "the miracle of adoption", it resonates with me in a very strong way. It feels like a miracle that through all of these series of choices and decisions of the heart, and twists and turns, and a journey around the world, our daughter made it home and is asleep in the room she shares with her big sister right now. I don't think I've ever quite experienced this kind of gratefulness before.

I am also grateful for more time with my dad. Somehow, through all of the difficult times since he was diagnosed with cancer in April, the blessing of time with him seems especially sweet. I've gotten to know him in a new way, and am thankful for each day that I got to hug him or talk with him, or just be with him.

Today, we will dress our house for Christmas, probably rearrange some furniture, and figure out how to eat turkey for the 4th day in a row. Pictures coming soon....

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Tomorrow, Tomorrow, I'll love you tomorrow, it's only a day away...

Or is it???
So, how do you answer this question, regularly posed by Ella (5): "Mommy is it tomorrow yet?"
Today after several failed attempts to explain "tomorrow" to Ella, Hunter gave his best try.
"See Ella, if you're standing in yesterday, then yes, today is tomorrow, but if you're standing in today then tomorrow is tomorrow."
Head spinning yet? Mine too.
Ella: "Well, mommy said my blue blankie would be out of the washer tomorrow, and I just want to know if it's tomorrow yet."
Hunter: "Mommy is Ella's blue blankie clean?"
Hunter: "Good, it is tomorrow."

Monday, November 12, 2007

I am deeply concerned...

I'll never forget the first time we put Piper (in China) in a dress and some fun shoes...she lit up, and we could tell that she felt oh so pretty.
Since that moment, she's had a fascination with shoes.
Footy pajamas don't stop this girl...
Just learning to walk, high problem!
Oh how she digs the shoes in the Old Navy girls department. She has nearly hyperventilated more than once over their sparkling beauty. I can always tell we are getting near the shoe department, in any store, when I hear the familiar sound of heavy breathing coming from the stroller.
I have never been a shoe girl, but I will say that Piper has me looking more than ever...
I think I can hear Scott hyperventilating now.

I'm speechless, almost

I guess I'm on an unintentional blogging break. I just haven't felt like writing lately, weird for me. We have a lot going on and I really have a lot to write about, but just haven't felt like it.

We have 9 family members coming in for Thanksgiving week, and of course I'm still working on the dining room. I'll post pictures when I'm done, or when I'm as done as I'm going to be. Oh, and I decided to paint a couple of walls in my kitchen as well!

We met with our social worker on Saturday for one of Piper's 2 post placement reports on how she's adjusting. It was fun to get to talk about her and think through all of the changes since placement day on February 26th.

My dad had a CT scan last week and we go to find out the results tomorrow. Now would be great time to lift us up in prayer!

I'll be back soon...that is if I don't pass out from all of the paint fumes.

(I tried to post a few pictures but blogger is not letting me, I'll attempt it again later.)

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Somebody forgot to explain te beauty of the time change to our kids, again

It's taken us 7 years to accept that when you have small kids, you don't get an extra hour of sleep when we all "fall back". Last night we were hopeful, excited, dreamy - looking forward to that extra hour of slumber. We set the clocks back with glee just after we put the kids to bed, following the painful Alabama loss to LSU.
Scott is starting a new job on Monday, and was tossing and turning most of the night with anxiety. He said he was having an agonizing dream of not being able to find his work, and walking through scary neighborhoods trying to find it. He is going to be thrilled that I've shared this. Anyway, I didn't sleep well with all of the tossing and turning and all, but every time I woke up, I kept reminding myself about that extra hour sleep that I was going to get.
I heard the first rumblings of awake children and glanced at my clock, 5:45 (6:45, kid time).
First Hunter, then Piper, then Ella. By 6:00, we were all up, well except Scott, who had finally settled in for a peaceful snooze.
Oh, well, there's always next year.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Today, I am thankful for Jenny Bowen and Half the Sky

I think a lot about not wasting my life.

This morning I had an email from Jenny Bowen of Half the Sky, saying that she has been selected as one of eight foreigners to carry the Olympic torch in the Beijing Olympics next summer.

Go here, and see Jenny Bowen and her girls. She is 62 years old, has 2 Chinese daughters that she and her husband adopted in their fifties. Not long after they adopted their 1st daughter they started an amazing organization that is now making a real difference in the lives of China's orphans. Watch the short video to see some of the children her organization is showing love to. When I watch, I can't help but see Piper's face in the faces of those children.

I thought this page was interesting, showing all who applied and the 8 winners.

Jenny Bowen inspires me that a mom with a heart for these little ones can make a difference.

"If anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones because he is my disciple, I tell you the truth, he will certainly not lose his reward."
-Jesus (Matthew 10:42)