Thursday, January 31, 2008

Why I write

Warning to mom: Blogger's spell check is not working right now, so I'm publishing this post as is. Read at your own risk!

As life has gotten more and more full lately, I've asked myself why I spend time writing about our life, when I could be doing something more productive. As I've thought about this for the last couple of weeks I've realized that, for me, writing is a real way to slow my "Martha like" self down. Slow down my brain and heart enough to reflect on what's working and what needs some attention. Writing slows me down enough to savor the little things that make up this life of mine, and helps me to laugh about the challenges involved in raising 3 little ones.

When I sit down to write, I am forced to stop and think.

Often, it's not until I try to write about something that I realize how incomplete the thoughts swimming around in my head really are.

When I find myself avoiding writing, it's usually because I am really avoiding something else.
I use this spot to write about things that I don't mind others reading. My journal is more where I pour out my heart and pray to God. I also record scripture that I'm focussing on at the time. I picture my kids someday reading what I write here, while my journals...maybe after I'm long gone they can get together over a cup a coffee and gasp at their mother's craziness together!

The other day I went back over some old posts, and can I tell you, I am so glad that because of Piper's adoption, we started this blog. So many details that would've been forgotten, little treasures, that are worth every minute I spent at this computer. Wouldn't you love to read your Grandmother's blog?!!! Years ago, my mom found her father's journal that he kept before he got married. He only wrote a few sentences for each entry, but it was fascinating to read. He died when I was very little, so I really only know him through that journal and things my mom has mentioned.

I think the point of this post is to give myself a little encouragement to keep writing. There will always be a bathroom to clean and floors to be dusted, but these days...these days and the stories they contain will be gone before I know it.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Because I don't scrapbook...

Piper's big thing right now(21 months old) is dressing herself, or "dressing" herself. She is constantly on the lookout for that special something to complete her look, like this pajama top for her legs or Ella's boots.
or...someone's (whose could they be?) undergarments for her neck and socks for her hands...of course.
And Ella wanted me to take this picture and "put it on the blawg!", that's my girl.

Piper's language is exploding right now and is a constant source of entertainment for us all. She is a very good mimic and the kids to can get her to say almost anything. Ella conducts daily language lessons with her where they go through the entire ABC song, letter by letter, with Piper copying each thing Ella says. Piper has developed a very strong voice when she says things like "STOP!" or "NOOOOO!". This morning she wanted some cereal so I said, "can you get a bowl?" . She looked at me and said "Sure, MOMMEEE!". That cracked me up for some reason, I'm not used to her being able to answer me I guess.

I really hope to be back later, when Ella is at school today, and do some updating to this "blawg" of mine. I've been on a little self imposed vacation and am ready to get back to it!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Hello, anybody there? Anybody?

I will be back soon, I really will.
I made a promise to myself that I would not blog until I had completed a few tasks first, like work through the paper pile on my desk, and clean the bathrooms, and you know, pay attention to the children. Little things like that.
Anyhoo, I'm making progress, and hope to be back in full swing this week!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Never ever give up....

I'm still trying to get a picture of those 3 little munchkins together, why is this such an impossible task?

Taking care of and loving 3 problem.
Getting them in a picture together, all eyes open, semi-still...impossible.

Monday, January 14, 2008

They're both in red, but one's a Democrat and one's a Republican...

(disclaimer: We here at Room for Grace do not endorse any particular political candidate or party. We realize the power we have to sway the election, and unlike Oprah, have decided to stay uninformed and quiet about our preferences.)

So the other day, Hunter overheard Hillary on Good Morning America, and wanted to know what she was talking about. I'm just glad he asked me and not his Papa. Papa would've been glad to inform him of course, but let's just say his response may not have been completely "fair and balanced".
So, as best I could, I explained the difference b/t Democrats and Republicans. You know, big government vs. limited government, the government solving people's problems vs. the people solving their problems, etc.. I really tried to not interject my own thoughts and opinions, and told him there were good people on both sides, and explained the criticisms that both sides receive.
At the end of my explanation, Hunter declared he was a Republican.

The next morning...

I was pouring myself a cup of coffee when I heard Ella(5) announce: "These are THE BEST DAYS OF MY LIFE!!!"


"I can get my breakfast ALL BY MYSELF! I can get the cereal, the bowl and the milk ALL BY MYSELF, with NO HELP!!!"

Less than 60 seconds later, from a horizontal position on the couch, Hunter(7) yells:
"Is anyone going to get me any breakfast???"

Oh, Hunter, I do think you may need to rethink your political affiliation. But then again, this is probably more of a gender issue, now that I think about it.

P. S. I just realized after rereading this post that I have single handedly offended half of the human race and half of the American public. We here at Room for Grace would like to state for the record that we love all people, regardless of their gender, politics, or willingness to get their own Cheerios.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Thursday at the Park

While Hunter and Ella are away, mommy and Piper play!

Piper had so much fun leading me around the park today. She got to be the big girl, while Hunter and Ella were at school. Though she loves being the little sister, I think she enjoys having some time as the one and only too.
Last night at dinner, Hunter aptly stated: "Piper really has a sense of humor." It's so true. We can see her joining in the family jokes and trying to make us laugh, which she does all the time. I love this age, watching her grow before our eyes. She says new words and phrases each day, and just seems so pleased with herself. I love her little voice, and really just every little thing about her!
I know, enough already!

A little bit o randomness

Piper's new favorite friend, "Dog Dog".
Showing Dog Dog the lights.
I love the smiles where their eyes disappear.
I heard Piper saying "Light! light!", saw this, and ran to get my camera.
Ella says, "Have a good day, ya'll, and you can never really have too much pattern!"

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Thursday, January 03, 2008

How about a little good news?

My mom is done with her 4 hour surgery to remove this darn breast cancer. The doctor gave us good news. Looks like her lymph nodes are clear, very welcome news.
She's been in recovery for about an hour and 15 minutes. Hopefully we'll see her soon. Thank you to everyone who has prayed for her. All in all, it's been a good day.

One year ago today...

January 3, 2007.

The details of that day are so vivid in my heart and mind.

We had prepared for that day for over 2 years. Thousands of prayers had been uttered, mountains of papers filled out, stamped, authenticated, certified, sprinkled with magic dust.

And here we were.

Scott was at work, Hunter and Ella at home, still on Christmas break. I was trying to keep busy, between my 5, 289 visits to the computer. We knew it was coming and the anticipation was almost unbearable. When I am waiting for something, I have a slightly insane aversion to anyone talking. That becomes a problem when you have an excited 6 year old and an excited 4 year old in the house. My mom called to see how I was doing and I think she quickly got the picture and offered to pick up Hunter and Ella and take them to a movie.

God bless that woman.

Once the house was quiet, though my stomach was turning flips by the minute, I felt much better, that I could now concentrate on just how crazy, excited, scared, and nervous I felt. Sometimes a girl just needs to concentrate on her crazy. Thankyouverymuch.

At about 11:00 a.m., we got an email saying our agency had received a package containing referrals! We knew our group was in there b/c the prior month we'd missed the cut-off by ONE DAY. At least we knew we were next. But then I started to worry our referral would somehow be missing from the pack. The clock ticking on the wall was making my head hurt as I waited for the phone to ring.

Scott was in a big meeting at work, so we were emailing all morning. I'm sure he was very productive that day.

Sometime around 1:00 p.m. THE PHONE RANG - oh my, this is it, I am about to give birth! And I've never been the home birthing type, in any way shape or form.

It was Erin, from our adoption agency, and she had something to tell me.

We were skipped, I knew it, just say it Erin, just say it.

"You have a beautiful baby girl! She's 8.5 months old and is residing at Xiushan (pronounced Shu-shan) Social Welfare Institution."

me: "We got a referral???" Duh.

E: "Yes! And she's got chubby cheeks and not much hair, do you want to hear more about her."

me: "Yes!!!! Double yes!!!"

E: "Her name is Xiu Fu Zhu, she was born on 4-18-06 and..."

Upon hearing her birthday, I LOST IT. Completely and totally lost it, as in the ugly cry kind of way. Don't know why it was her birthday that did it for me, but it did. In that moment Piper Grace became a real live person to me, my baby, and I hadn't even seen her picture at this point. She had a birthday. She'd been born in April. I love April.

The rest of the story can be read here. Start at the bottom of the page and work your way up. I read these posts this morning and relived every sweet moment, so thankful. So very, very thankful. I can't imagine living my life not having experienced this. Piper was so worth every minute of difficulty it took to get to her.

The Lord is faithful. Very little of the adoption process played out as we expected. But His ways are truly higher and better and more rich in every way than ours.

Happy 1 year referral day anniversary!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Oh, Glorious Day!

The sun is shining on this first day of 2008, as Scott and I sit by the fire and reminisce over the last year. The joys, the sorrows, the pain, the triumph. What a wonderful time we had last night, ringing in the New Year...

oh, wait, that's my fantasy life.

The sun is shining on this first day of 2008, that much is true. And we are reminiscing...but it's about what it feels like to get an uninterrupted night's sleep, something that has eluded us since last Monday night. A week ago. That's how long Piper and Ella have been suffering from some sort of plague that involves large volumes of mucus and late night hacking spells. Last night was almost the night. Piper slept through like a baby on Benadryl. The only interruption took place when I woke up to the sound of Ella breathing in my ear, standing by my bedside. For some reason when Ella gets out of bed in the middle of the night for an "emergency", she won't tell us she's there. She just stands there, breathing, until one of us (guess who) wakes up. We always wonder how long she's been standing there. One time I woke up to the feeling of her sneeze landing on my face.

Her emergency last night involved not being able to find Spotted Dog, her beloved beanie baby. So I got my cheery self out of bed at 2:30 am to find Spotted Dog, who was laying right on top of Ella's bed.

And this morning, this morning Ella has thrown up 3 times. Welcome 2008!

I have a post in my head about 2007, and I really want to get it out of my head. It's knocking on my skull, demanding to be set free. Since that post is not making it into blogosphere until things settle down around here, I'll link to my friend, John Piper, on his focus for the New Year...a life marked by prayer.