Friday, December 31, 2010

New Year's Resolutions

As chronicled by Abby five minutes ago my notes in red:

Mom--to go to bed earlier
Dad--pay off a bunch of bills
K-- not available for comment
Abby--be able to do the splits
Ian--Do a back hand-spring "I'm already talented in many ways, and soon I will be able to do back hand-springs." Well, nothing wrong with that child's self-esteem. May have to work on humility...
Marina--Be able to do cartwheels
Randy--Ride my bike without training wheels, and do tricks on my skateboard.
Cara--to get on the potty by myself. Ahem, I think the big sisters regularly sent to do this chore may have prompted her "resolution."

And since I'd like to get going on my resolution....Goodnight!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Thursday Night Nothing

I'm making a new year's resolution to blog more, so I better get a running start. Christmas was great. My dad said it was a good thing we are all so poor. Otherwise, we wouldn't have had room in the house for the gifts. It's true. It took well over three hours to open presents on Christmas morning. Even when we feel we are stretched to the absolute end, we still have so much.
The master, Abby, and Cara are on their way back from Houston. Master had his prosthetic greased and oiled and Cara had her three month check-up. She's doing great! She is 25% in height and 50% in weight. That's her round little belly. I could just eat it up! Abby went along as bathroom escort and official keep-Daddy-from-dozing-off side-kick.
Since the master was on his way south long before dawn, I had to open the daycare at 5:30. Then, I spent the better part of the day entering tax information for my daycare parents. I hate paperwork. Hence, I have a terrible headache.
Randy is tracking ants (Will we never be rid of them??!!)
Ian read me a bedtime story.
Marina is tucked in tight.
K is taking a shower.
Goodnight all!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone! I hope yours was as blessed as mine. I'm stuffed and feeling drowsy and the master needs the computer to download IWorship for tomorrow's service, so I will have to give you a longer post later.

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Talked yesterday with S________ about how birthmother's visit was going. She said it was going good--that they were able to talk through things, and make peace with the past. Then she said, "I've decided that she is my sister. Because Mom is my mom, and nothing is going to change that, and Mom is her mom, too. So that is what she is going to be. My sister."
How wonderful that she came to that conclusion on her own. I see now how wise M____ (adoptive mom) was to allow her freedom to choose what role her birthmother would play.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Holiday Picture Potpourri

We began the season with Thanksgiving in Illinois. Remember two years ago, when I posted that Grandma Z would not be with us much longer? Well, I've never been happier to report that I was wrong. We had a great time, love our extended family there, and wish Texas and Illinois were closer.

As soon as we returned, we visited the tree farm and took the lovely pictures you see in my header. After finding the most beautiful tree there to be our very own, we visited the master's uncle, where Aunt Myrna treated the kids to their first Christmas goodies of the season, and snapped many photos.

We almost forgot about the Christmas parade that Abby's dance school marched in. Luckily, one of our dads at the daycare made a comment about going to the Christmas parade in town, or we would have missed it.

Cara at the Christmas parade. I love this picture.

And speaking of Cara, lookie what we can do now. BRAIDS!! So adorable. It makes it hard to decide whether to trim it again into the precious "Dora" cut, or let it grow so we can do more styles. This picture was taken right before we went to Grandma's birthday party. Her shirt has Christmas cookies and gumdrops and reads, "Sweet as Grandma's lovin'"

We revived an old family tradition and made the Nachitoches Christmas Lights Festival for the first time in five or six years. Mom, Dad, sisters, and 12 children on a riverbank for ten hours and we still enjoyed our day. Pretty amazing. And, as is obvious from K's expression, the fireworks were AWESOME!

That brings us up to the first weekend in December. What a crazy time of year!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Truth Hurts-Episode ?

We have a young lady in our church who also happens to be our neighbor. She is a fun girl who does quite a bit with our family--I think I've had her pic on the blog before. She came over tonight to stay with the kids while we did a funeral visitation. Tomorrow is a big day for her. She will see her birthmother for the first time since she was eight years old. She only saw her sporadically from the age of four until then. Her and her brother's young life with their birthmom was neglectful and traumatic. They were subsequently raised and, a few years ago, officially adopted by their maternal grandmother. She told the master she was nervous about the meeting--particularly over not being sure about what to call her.

The master: Well, did you talk with your mom about that?
S: We talked about maybe calling her Aunt _________, but that's weird 'cause she's not my aunt. Then my mom said I should just call her what feels natural.
The master: What feels natural?
S: Mom

After she left, the master wondered if that had hurt M_____ to hear S ______ say that. I didn't think so. S_______ calls me mom all the time, and I've heard her use that name with several other women in the church. I've never been comfortable with it, knowing what I do about attachment, but hadn't the heart to ask her to stop. Especially since she would view it as a rejection. At any rate, the "mommy shopping" behaviors, don't seem to bother M__________, so I doubted she would be overly hurt by the comment. But I knew I would if my child said that to me. It would cut me to the quick. I secretly even hope that my kids will not grow up and call their mother-in-laws 'mom.' I grabbed the first child that came into arms reach--Marina--in a bear hug and half-jokingly cried, "But don't ever let me catch one of you calling someone else 'mom' You hear me? I'm your one and only." I wasn't thinking about Marina being adopted. I would have said the same thing to any of them. But she looked up and said, "Well, there is my birthmother."

Me: Thinking, well, duh, Jessica. But you know sometimes I really do forget. Yes, but you don't have to worry about what to call her. She is your 'birthmother.' only term we have used, with the exception of telling her that she does have her birthmother's name.
Marina: But what will I call her when we go to Russia and I meet her? this blew me away because Marina came up with this idea on her own and remains smiling and relaxed in my arms. She does not seem threatened at all. Up until recently, we couldn't mention the possibility of traveling to Russia without a complete shut down.
Me: Please don't think I am cruel for my next words. I have to tell her the truth as hard as it is. Marina, remember? Your birthmother was very, very sick. The kind of sickness doctors don't know how to make better. She most likely did not live much longer.
Marina: Is that why I was left at the orphanage? I am totally amazed at this point because this is the first time ever that she has seemed to grasp that
1). The orphanage was a place she lived in--as opposed to a lousy daycare where she spent an unpleasant visit and
And still she is relaxed and making eye contact.
Me: Yes, she was too sick to take care of a baby--any baby. Even one as beautiful and wonderful as you. Picking her up and smothering her face and neck with kisses.

She lets a giggle escape and skips off. I watch her go, thinking that this has been the least painful of our adoption talks. Then I look at the master and his eyes are filled with tears.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Christmas Wrapping Skin

Love this time of year. And love the fact I got a new blog skin up before it passed me by.