Friday, January 26, 2007
Thursday, January 25, 2007
We have one of those kid-magnet houses. I love it! This is Skylar who lives next door to us. She is 6 years old and in kindergarten. She told me the other night that she is also my daughter and she has two families. Isn't that so sweet? She likes to come over and play, hang out and run errands with me. Levi absoolutely adores her. He says he is going to marry her someday. Way to go Levi!
Now if we can just get our two little Guat babies home, we can really have a kid house! Call me crazy but I love having a very busy house and life. Peace and quiet are totally over-rated. Give me uncontrollable giggling and chaos and I am a happy camper.
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Builder: The additions you wanted will cost you more.
Chris: How much more?
Builder: Some and maybe some more. The blah blah this and that adds up.
Chris: Can you break it down for me?
Builder: Oh, sorry, we charged you double for something and charged you for two other things we shouldn't have. It now only costs less than some more.
Chris: We don't want an intercom, never did. Please remove it from the list. We also noticed that in the upgrades part of our manual the surround sound is listed at $$, but this bill you sent has it at more than twice that price. Can you please explain the increase?
Builder: Blah blah blah building you the best house blah blah blah all builders do these things
I am so proud of Chris. He has really worked hard to be sure we get what we pay for and are getting the dream home we want. Our builder is not bad, in fact the house is extremely well built. They just have some issues with communication and pricing. We end up talking to 3 different guys about each thing and we get 3 different answers most of the time. We aren't trying to get anything for free, we just want to be able to budget accordingly. We have been surprised by some additional costs we weren't expecting. Things like $$ for gas service and a meter and $$ for additional electrical wiring and stuff. We would have thought that electrical and gas service would be included in the price of the house. Not so apparently. We knew we would be paying for any upgrades but not for things we thought were basic parts of a home. It kind of feels like buying a car and having to pay extra for the wheels.
We got a brief update on Ahren's case yesterday. Unfortunately it's not good news. We have been kicked out of PGN for the 5th time. For those of you not into Guat adoptions, PGN is the large government office that oversees adoptions. Our file for the correction of Ahren's birth certificate has to be approved by them before we can move forward with the adoption. The file was first submitted to PGN in July. Each time they kick it out they ask for one more paper or signature or something. This time they are asking for another copy of the original birth document from the hospital. But they don't want just any old copy. They want the copy that went to the Central American archives. Why? Who knows. Apparently they are not convinced yet that there is no fraud going on with this baby. I have no idea how long it might take to get this document and resubmit the file. Or if the document will be the last thing they ask for. We have decided to just wait and try not to worry. It's funny, but I feel a sense of peace about him now. I don't know why or where it came from exactly, but somehow it's all okay. He is our son and it doesn't matter how long the process takes, we love him just the same.
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
Monday, January 22, 2007
2: Waking up at 4:30 am and not being able to go back to sleep.
3: People asking me why we don't have our son home yet.
4: Working so hard to get a house ready to put on the market only to realize it looks better than it ever has and we are moving.
5: Getting up at 5:30 in the morning on Sunday so I can drink coffee and read the paper in a quiet house, only to have the paper not show up until 7:15.
6: Dropping the hot pan of stuffed pasta shells onto the door of my clean oven and burning my arm.
7: Mud. Muddy shoes, muddy dogs, muddy yards. Mud, mud, mud.
8: Weekends are too short and my to-do list too long.
9: Our family all lives very far away.
10: Cat hair. (Would it be bad it I used Nair on the cats????)
Friday, January 19, 2007
May today there be peace within.
May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith. May you use those gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you.... May you be content knowing you are a child of God... Let His presence settle into your bones, and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love. It is there for each and every one of us.
Thursday, January 18, 2007
Levi has been battling a cold and over the last couple of days his runny nose has gotten very green and thick. Not good. Then yesterday Katie told me her throat hurt. I took a look and it was horrible! I bundled everyone up and we headed for the walk-in clinic. Katie has strep throat and Levi has an ear infection/sinus infection and most likely strep too. I feel like such a bad mom! Levi didn't act very sick and nobody was running a fever. I was shocked they were this sick. I guess I took them in just in time. So now we have antibiotics times 2 for ten days. Ever since I looked at katie's throat, mine has been feeling funny. I hope it is just my imagination!
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Tuesday, January 16, 2007
Monday, January 15, 2007
Friday, January 12, 2007
I have mentioned before how many deer we have but did I mention how big some of them are? Here is a photo of my footprint next to a deer track. That had to be a large buck to have hooves that big. Apparently they are all pretty tame becasue they don't spook away from us and will actually walk towards us as though they are curious. We are going to set up a deer feeder in the back part of the property. We have been told this is a good way to keep them from eating all of our landscaping. Let's hope that works and they don't think I have just created a giant salad bar just for them.
The weather has been holding (look at that blue sky, it's was gorgeous that day) and they have gotten the house completely dried in. Here is what is looked like the day before they finished shingling. All of the siding is on and we are just waiting for the stone to be delivered. It has been hard to get a lot of pictures becasue it is dark before I go to work and dark when I get home. That hasn't stopped us from visiting with flashlights, but pictures just don't work.
This afternoon we have an appointment at the Design Center to pick out counter tops, flooring, cabinets, etc. We get 6 hours of help from a designer included in our house price so we are meeting her today for the first time. I have a binder with pages I have torn out of magazines that show the types of things we like and the look we are after. The house should feel very relaxed and open with a slight country feel. Not country like cornflower blue and chickens, but country like natural woods and stones, lots of natural light, etc. (Although Chris always teases me about doing the kitchen in chickens. I think I will have to sneak one little chicken in there someplace just to show him and I will name it Chris)
No news on the adoption front. Yesterday PBJ turned 3 months old. Hopefully she will be home in a couple of months. I don't worry about her the way I do Ahren. She is still so tiny and her case is going so well. I spend all my worry energy on Ahren.
Thursday, January 11, 2007
This is called the tummy tub. It is supposed to be a tub that mimics the feeling in the womb. Apparently you fill it up, immerse the baby and then carefully hang onto their head so they don't slip under water. Now I ask you, how in the world are you supposed to WASH the baby? Or is this just supposed to be an exercise in re-living the past for the baby? Notice how the water appears somewhat yellow. Maybe you make fake amniotic fluid too? Yuck!!This is called the baby keeper. When I first saw it I thought it was some sort of baby-time-out device! It is actually designed to hang over a restroom door keeping baby safe from the dirty floor while Mommy does her business. I hope no one ever forgets their baby in their rush to wash their hands and escape public restrooms! This product will not be on my wish list!
This is called the ThudGuard. It is intended for children to wear to protect them from bumping their noggins. I find this one strangely funny and sad all at the same time. There are people who actually need protective helmets due to various medical conditions. These aren't intended for them. These are for normal kids. Normal kids of overwhelmingly protective parents. No amount of cute decorations can make this look any less than utterly ridiculous.
This is called Zaky. The idea is that you can leave your child cradled by loving hands even when you can't be there. That's fake rubber disembodied loving hands. The concept sounds good but the outcome is disturbing. I have the urge to slap those hands away and rescue the baby! Creepy Alien hands. Makes me think of the qhost story of the creeping hand coming after someone. This is more like a practical joke designed to scare the daylights out of the parents! Can you imagine peeking into your precious little one's crib only to find scary dimembodied hands clutching your baby? Yep, much better as a practical joke.This one is just deeply disturbing. It is a system that allows a father to simulate breastfeeding their child. I don't know about you, but that just seems so very, very wrong to me. Poor kid is going to end up in a bell tower with a rifle! I see many, many years of therapy ahead for that poor baby. Heck, I think I need therapy from just reading about it.
These were the worst of the baby gadgets I saw. I am sure there are more and even worse things out there. Babies really don't need a whole lot of gadgets to be happy and healthy. They need love and attention, good nutrition and sleep, and a safe environment. It's just as simple as that.
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Paula, you are so strong. You have been through so much and yet you still smile and laugh. You get down but you never give up even on the worst days. Your strength and friendship mean the world to me.
Krystal, you adopted a baby boy with a serious heart defect and you never thought twice about it. He was your son and that was all there is to it. Your strength and love show in how well he is doing. I am honored to be your friend.
Amanda has the worst adoption story I have ever heard. No made-for-TV movie could have as many twists and turns, ups and downs. Yet she is moving forward and will be a Mom, come hell or high water. Amanda is truly an amazing person.
Philly, you are on your third attempt to be a mother. The first two ended badly and yet you are still pushing forward to bring home your child. Little Johnny is the 'meatball of your dreams' and soon he will be in your arms.
Ginger, you lost your first little girl. Your first love. You grieved for her and yet were still able to open your heart to a new daughter. Maya is a very lucky little girl. Her Mommy is a very special person. A very strong woman with deep powers of love (and wonderful shopping abilities ;-)
Crystal, Natalie, Rachel, Kris, Angel, Gayle, all of you have voluntarily prayed for my children. I cannot express how deeply that touches me. I have tears in my eyes just typing this. Prayers are the only thing that I believe will bring my Ahren home. Only God can perform this miracle. The support I receive from all of you keeps me going, keeps me trying and keeps me sane.
So as hard as this past year has been, I am grateful to my many new friends. There are many more than I mentioned. Every time I fall down, someone is there to pick me up. At times I have been so worn out that I didn't think I could take one more step, and then my friends give me the strength. I don't know how to thank all of you. There are no words for what you all mean to me and my family. God Bless every one of you.
(If I didn't mention you, SORRY! It's been a really rough week and my brain cells are out on strike!)
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
Along with the photos we got an update on his growth. The measurements were taken in November, when he would have been 10 months old. He weighed 25 pounds and was 30.5 inches tall. Big beefy boy! He is definitely well cared for! Now if we can just get his birth certificate and make some progress towards bringing him home, I would be the happiest woman in the world!
Monday, January 08, 2007
Friday, January 05, 2007
And one last picture for Grandpa J. Levi now has his own level. This window is looking good!
Thursday, January 04, 2007
It is looking like a house! They are getting it enclosed this week (if the rain will just stay away!) I can now walk thru and see how the rooms are laid out and how it feels. Chris kept asking me during the design phase if I thought the rooms were big enough, etc. I have absolutely no concept of size. To me the rooms were 2 inches big on paper. I just couldn't envision the real size in my head. The good news is that it seems big enough in most areas. The two bedrooms upstairs are a bit small but I have decided that the girls don't need bigger rooms. They have huge rooms now and it just means more floor space to throw dirty clothes on. Maybe now they will have a better chance of hitting a hamper! I have been trying to get new pictures this week. They have all the windows in the 1 st floor and are almost finished with the 2nd floor windows. Unfortuantely I have been working long hours and it's dark when I leave in the morning and dark when I get home. I will definitely get more this weekend.
Tuesday, January 02, 2007
The year 2006 brought me many new friends, taught me a lot about patience (well, I might still be learning on that one!) made me realize how fortunate I am, made me want to reach out and share that good fortune with others, and taught me some tough lessons about what I can and cannot control in this life.
So here's to 2007, the year of changes, optimism and babies. It's gonna be a good one!!!!!