Thursday, April 26, 2012

Don't choke on the foot, Babe;)

Marc and I had another meeting/interview with out social worker today.  She was asking us about our marriage.  She asked Marc, "What attracted you to Kim?"  This is the interaction that followed.  He told the story of the first time he really noticed me (I was singing) and that he thought I was "the most beautiful girl I'd ever seen in real life"  (Pause for the "aw!" your sure to utter;).  He then said, "I never wanted to marry a girl who would be a door mat.  I wanted a girl with guts and backbone."  I interjected, "he just didn't know he was getting more of that than he bargained for!"  Marc looked at me inquisitively, "More gut?"  

Imagine, shocked look upon my face, followed by hysterical laughter.  I was talking about more back bone.  How does one take back insulting your wife's belly?  One doesn't. I almost cried I was laughing so hard.  Poor guy scrambled to try to make it better.  I think the social worker completely enjoyed watching the whole thing.  

To be fair, I actually am NOT offended.  I know my husband finds me completely attractive, jelly potbelly and all.  I will reserve the right to bring it up a few more times over the next 40 years, however-- it's fun to watch him squirm and try to explain:)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Backseat Conversation

While driving yesterday, I was deep in though, enjoying the very blue sky.  Ava was singing, "I am going to stand on the Rock (of God's word)" and was on her third rendition.  Chloe and Phin has been quiet, but Phin must have decided he wanted in on the action.  He started singing "Bad Babies" (it's a Sandra Boynton song).  They competed in a game of "whose louder" for a minute or so before Ava became frustrated.

Ava:  "PHIN!  I am trying to praise God!"
Phin:  "I am trying to sing 'Bad Babies'"
Ava:  "You are not full of praise or full of life!"  (then in a less frustrated more instructive voice) "Did you know that is what my name means?  Ava means 'Full of life or full or praise', so I guess I could just say you are not very Ava."
Phin:  "So! my name is in the bible, Ava."
Ava:  "Phineas!  Praise is in the bible too and that is what I am trying to do here."
Phin:  "Oh!"  (as if totally enlightened for the first time;)

Certainly, sin nature was on display here in a few ways, but I just loved this little conversation.  I love that Ava really loves her name and embraces it's meaning.  I didn't realize Phineas really knew his name was in the bible, though we've certainly told him.  I love the way he stated the fact; he knows at 3 that the bible has authority and I LOVED that.  I also loved that all on their own my children went from completely frustrated to somehow forming an understanding between a 3 and 6 year old.  I was completely able to observe and enjoy;)

Monday, April 23, 2012

This weekend some dear, dear friends of our went through an extremely traumatic situation.  It is a profound miracle that Jason and the girls are alive.  I was sitting in a movie theater Saturday afternoon, when I got a text saying they'd been electricuted.  I couldn't focus on the movie, my heart was crying out to God to spare their lives, to wrap his arms around Roxanne as she waited.  God chose to intervene and spare their lives.  He chose to go beyond that and spare them from life long disability.  It is a miracle- no question.

It's been hard to focus on anything else the last couple days.  We are so far away (they are in Africa).  Yet, it has also been extremely comforting that God is there.  He is so big- he is listening to me and there with them.  The thought is mind blowing.

I also just want to keep hugging my family.  We wrongly assume time is ours.  Each day truly is but a breath, it is a gift.  This weekend we were reminded of the fragility of life.  It is a reminder I want to keep close to heart.  I want to use the time God has given me on earth to bring glory to his name.  I don't want to waste time on that which is unimportant and I want to be thankful for every day he gives me with family and friends.  Each day together is a gift.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Blessings Among the Clouds

We are fortunate to know enough adoptive families, that we knew when we started on the journey to adopt, it wouldn't be easy.  There are the mounds of paperwork I mentioned before, but I think the hardest part is disapproval from others.  It's hard to know in the depth of your soul that this is what the Lord is calling our family to do and to have that questioned by others.  I know there is no way to "prove" this is the Lord's call for us.  We didn't hear an audible voice coming out of the clouds with details on how to go about this.  Our hearts were drawn and prompted.  Circumstances seem providential.  But sometimes what we view as providential, others say is coincidence.  The criticism is hardest coming from those close to you or other strong believers.  It's challenging when behind the criticism is the basic belief that they do not believe this is really a God thing, but just an idea we think is good; that is perhaps most hurtful.  It's not all about adoption, actually.  I think it is hard for some people to understand adoption, but I have found the hardest thing people grapple with is the fact our family is growing...possibly into quite a large familly.

I get a lot of, "How will you handle it?"s.  I get "Don't you have your hands full already?"  I wish it was easier to let these question roll off my back.  Usually it takes a good cry and a lot of chosing to focus on God and not externals to get to a place of peace.  See, these questions touch on my own fears.  I have no idea how I'll handle it and YES! we do have our hands full.  The questions touch on my own fears of inadequacy as I read into the questioning and wonder if people think I am failing as a mom.  I don't think I do too bad with my three, but I start to fear maybe I am doing a worse job than I think.  All of a sudden I start to get my eyes of Christ, and focus on my own weaknesses and fears.  I've been forced to confront my own previously unnamed fears about having a large family.  I have had to confront the fact that I have my own prejudices against it.  Let's face it- it is SOOO not cool.  Our society is all about living for ourselves, living with ease, etc.  I am terrified sometimes about how many kids God will call us to have.  It feels too hard.  When will I ever have time for myself?  Who will babysit for 4 or 5 kids?  Will we ever be able to travel? 

If there were a scale, the positive, supporting, amazing things we hear and feel certainly greatly outweight the bad, but it one were to look at this week alone, the scale tipped negative.  It's been hard.

God calls us all to very different things.  Being called to have a large family, pulls me out of my comfort zone, but I believe that is the journey God needs to take me on.  I am far to easily prone to living for myself and the world tells me that is how I should live.  With each child, I have had to give more of me.  Yes, it's terrifying to wonder how much God will ask me to give.  Yes, I wonder if there'll be anything left.  But TRUTH is not based on other people's opinion or wise words; it is certainly not based on my feeling, which can very greatly day to day.  Truth is based on what God's word says.  The bible says children are a blessing.  The bible says I am to die to self.  The bible says HE is strong where I am weak.  The bible says His plans are to PROSPER me and not to harm me.  I have to chose to focus on truth and forget about other's approval or what is "cool".

Yes, this week I needed a good reminder to focus on the truth.  I had lost focus on Christ and like Peter started to drown in waves of doubt.  My feelings were injured and I had trouble looking past them.  My sister was amazing yesterday and reminded me of truth and God's faithfulness; she gently reminded me that my job was to be obedient and trust the Lord.  She reminded me of the truth of scripture just when I needed the reminder.   Today, God chose to throw in a little extra encouragement.  We went to get Ava's physical for the adoption and our family doctor was SO encouraging.  He's traveled to Haiti multiple times and tears literally came to my eyes when he said, "I cannot think of a better family to adopt.  I am so happy to fill out these forms and I hope the process is much shorter than imagined.  I can't wait to meet your new child."

It was small, but huge.  He probably was taken back at my tears, but to have the man who assesses my children regularily and has gotten to know us over the last two years throw in such a wonderful vote of confidence blessed my heart immensly.  Thank God for all the little ways he cares for my heart.  AND even though lessons sometimes sting a little, even though it's humbling to sometimes find myself so easily shaken, I am so very thankful for the Potter who knows exactly what he's making of me, his little cracked pot;)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Quotes of the Day from La Case de Aneed

1)  This afternoon I took Ava and two friends to lunch and then the children's museum.  As they were playing in the "supermarket", I sat in a chair (provided for parents) playing Tetris on my iPhone.  I was all of 8 feet from the girls.  Apparently, the didn't realize I could hear their conversation.  It had many funny moments, including one friend telling the girls "Did you know I almost died so many times from Asthma? SOOO many times."  (Granted, it CAN be quite serious, but hers is not.  She was exaggerating, JUST a little, but with beautiful dramatic flair;)  My very favorite moment of their conversting, however, came from my dear daughter.

Friend:  What are we going to do with all this stuff in our cart?  You guys if we make it too full it will take us too long to put away.  WAIT!  I know, let's bring it to Ava's mom and she can pretend she's making us dinner.
Ava:  I don't think that is a good idea.  You guys my mom get's SOOO tired because she takes care of little kids ALL DAY.  I think we should give her space to rest.

Sweet...and hilarious;)

2)  After dinner my children all got a small handful of blueberry yogurt covered pretzels that I noticed at the grocery store.  I didn't really explain what they were, I didn't think too much about it.  I simply said, "I have special blue pretzels for a treat."  Phineas was ecstatic for about 30 seconds.  He took one bite and then with a voice dripping in disappointment said, "Hey!  These aren't blue pretzels!  LOOK!  Someone painted them!" He didn't take to kindly to my hysterical laughter either;)  It took some fancy explaining to get him to keep eating....he was genuinely crushed to find a "regular" pretzel inside;)

3)  When I got home from my afternoon with Ava, instead of acting excited to see me, Chloe stated, "Go way, Go way, mama."  I said, "You want me to go away?"  To which she said with much finality, "Yes.  Choe (she leaves the "l" out of her name) wike (likes) Hannah (our babysitter)."  and then she gave me the "talk to the hand sign and started laughing hysterically.  It shouldn't have been cute, but she thought it was so funny one couldn't help but laugh with her.;)  She is just such a sassy little thing!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My Newest Crush

We had our Home Visit today for our Home Study.  It was a lovely experience.  I have a friend crush on our Social Worker.  She was just amazing.  I could probably write volumes about her.  She's adorable and brilliant and experienced.  She has two of her own internationally adopted children and is a psychotherapist.  Her realm of experiences related to adoption, is awe inspiring.  She has scene really wonderful things and really tragic things and she laid it all our for us.  She was encouraging and asked really thought provoking questions.  It was such a good experience that I was sad when the visit ended.

God is so good.  I have been wrestling with whether to adopt one child or a sibling group.  I have wrestled with what age children to request.  I have wrestled with where to put children with our current birth order.  I have been praying about it.  Our placment agency will go through this with us again, taking our temperments and the adoptees into consideration, but talking through this with Deb today was really good.  You can read a gazillion articles from experts that tell you opposing things.  Deb was able to ask questions and help me think through it in a way I hadn't been able to do reading and jouraling and praying.  It was awesome.  I felt so blessed to have such an experienced woman walk with us through this.  She'll be with us through the adoption and afterwards.  What a blessing!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Back on the Weight Loss bandwagon

Winter is over and since the week before Christmas I have gained almost 6 lbs.  It doesn't sound like a lot, but it's enough for me to feel yucky in my body and for my clothes to sort of fit awry.  It's unacceptable and a sign of the chaos my mind has been in on and off.  It started with a stressful week at my inlaws at Christmas (Side not, let me clarify that it was because of Chloe, not my in laws; The little gal wasn't sleeping and acted horribly all week....I should have read about moth ball toxicity BEFORE returning home, as she was sleeping in a walk in closet filled with moth about mother guilt!).  Then the Seasonal Affective Disorder, then 6 of the busyiest weeks ever including two vacations.  It is amazing once one falls off the wagon how hard it is to get back on.

Today I am jumping back on, but I swear I may have to tie myself to this wagon.  It is 8:52, I have been awake for 2 1/2 hours.  Food should not be dominating my thoughts, but in deed it is.  The Easter Candy in the drawer has come to life.  I swear it is little demons screaming, "eat me, eat me" and I have to speak aloud back to it.  One observing me this morning would think I was insane.  I mean IT IS JUST FOOD.  I don't need to eat crappy food.  Do I?

I had a bowl of oatmeal this morning and I don't know when I finished it, but I came down from getting Chloe and I was crushed to find my bowl empty and my tummy still rumbly.  How thankful I am for fruit and veggies.  They are my long lost neglected friends.  I was cheating on them with pie and Easter Candy, but the loyal produce is still there waiting with open arms.  I just hope I can stay faithful.

Getting a workout in would be good too.  I haven't seen the gym yet this year.  Did I really just admit that to everyone?  I did- it's true, I haven't gone.  All my hard work sacrificed to illness and sick children and a million excuses.  Hopefully coming out of the closet will be mortifying enough to make me get back there or go for a run.  Oprah would condemn me for shaming myself, but I think it's just being appalled at the truth.  I have been making excuses and it's downright ridiculous.  If I want to be in shape, I am going to have to work at it again...and make time for it even when time is in short demand.  Here we go again, readers, back to the grind- to tracking and working out...and soon to feeling great once again.  It'll be a much shorter journey this time...gotta catch this weight gain train before it goes full spead ahead.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Adoption Process Update

We are well underway in our process now....all our paperwork on our end that needs to be done up to this point is completed.  We just have to have our physicals, which are scheduled, but not until 4/27.  (Did you know that though we just need a standard physical, because it is for adoption they made us wait for an "adoption physical" appointment.  This also means that though a physical a year is covered by our insurance it will be billed differently and that different code means we pay out of pocket.  COMPLETELY ANNOYING.  It means no insurance company is advocating for a lower price, we pay whatever the health system deems to be the "adoption physical" price.  Yes, the physcian needs to take an extra step of writing a letter on our behalf...but I am pretty sure a simple letter that says, "Marc and Kimberly are in good health and have no health care issues that would prevent them from caring for their children"  shouldn't cost hundreds of dollars.  This infuriates me, but I digress.)

Tuesday we have our homestudy.  This means our local agency (that we work with to be approved to adopt in the state of Wisconsin) sends our social worker.  She goes through our home, interviews our children, etc.  We have certain guidelines that need to be met for safety- ie. smoke alarms within 10 feet of all bedrooms, all cleaners/chemicals and medication in locked cabinets, no expired medications, etc.  We need to prove that we have room for more children and live in a safe environment.  It hasn't been incredibly stressful but is a bit time consuming to make sure everything is up to par.  I had expired meds from 2009....woops.  I always check before administering but there was some OLD stuff in there;)

Hopefully, this will go smoothly and they will type up a nice document and our dossier will be completed and we are on to immigration stuff and our referral.  Exciting times...getting this paperwork out of the way is priceless.  When we have all in hand (including MD letter and homestudy), I'll be sure to post a picture.  The vast amount of paperwork required is UNBELIEVABLE.

Quick shout out to our reference letter folks- we got back reference letters is very quick order...we know many people whose process has been held up because of reference letters so I thank our friends for honoring us by not only writing letters that make us cry, but getting them back to us quickly.  MUCHAS GRACIAS!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Boys are 90% Mischief and 10% Dirt

 I saw the title of this post on a t-shirt some time ago and thought it was cute.  I guess it still is...sometimes living with a little person made up on 90% mischief doesn't "feel" cute, however.

My son was born and along with his birth came several "boys are different than girls" warnings.  Never have warnings been more true.  My son is different than my daughters and certainly different than me.  Lately, it seems his antics has escalated, making for good stories, but a tired and oft frustrated mama.

Here is our most recent Saga:

Last Friday, my son came in from playing outdoors all afternoon and loudly exclaimed, "I peed my pants when I was outside, but they are dried already, isn't that cool?!"  It took me a minute to process his statement, a)that he peed his pants and b)that he stayed in them long enough for them to dry!  I mean who would do that?!  He's never done something so absurd and hadn't had an accident in a couple months, so I just said, "Buddy, that is gross and it will make your skin itchy; you need to go upstairs, wash you bottom with a washcloth and change your pants.  If you have to go potty, you need to come inside."  I figured that would be the end of it.

Apparently, I was too laid back about it because he peed his pants three more times between Friday and Yesterday.  I handled the first three nonchalantly, but yesterday I'd had it with this nonsense.

I sent him to clean up his room; we've had a problem with him thinking it's fun to dump out his toys and clothes on the floor so the last few times he's done it, he's had to pick it up all by himself (granted, I have to go back later and actually fold the clothes he stuffed back in his drawer).  While being in his room for over an hour, refusing to pick anything up, he peed his pants ON the clean clothing.  Dogs do that, people should not. Mommy, was admittedly angry.  A) he didn't pick anything up and b) he peed AGAIN and this time part of it got on clean clothes?  UNACCEPTABLE to this mommy.  He had to pick up the clothes and put them in the laundry, change into his pj's and go to bed for the night.  I told him he was going to go to bed before Chloe because he was acting like a baby and if he peed his pants again he was going to wear a diaper.  He cried, and I smiled inside because I figured this was great consequence for the little boy who wants to be so grown up.

Then came 6 am this morning....and the smile was erased.  I learned that this was a stupid thing to my son.  While in his room since 6pm, he was afraid to come out and though he had on a pull up, he pooped his pull up.  Then he tried to change it himself, in his room, on the carpet.  When poop got on the carpet, he tried to clean it up with his library book bag.  You can imagine what I walked into this morning.  It smelled to high heaven and was a sight to behold to say the least.

When first potty training, he took a few weeks to get to the potty on time for poop and we had problems with him try to clean it up himself, but we finally reinforced that he could not do it, he had to call mommy or papa to clean him up.  We had MINOR smears on his carpet during this time, but after months of him proving he went in the potty, we professionally cleaned the carpets about a month ago.

This time there was no smear, it was a mess and did I mention we have a social worker coming on Tuesday to do our home study for our adoption.  ARGH!  Did I fail to mention that he had poop dried all over his hands, on his pj shirt.....and even on his CHIN?  I can only imagine the germs he slept in.  SOOOOOO GROSS!

I asked him in complete disbelief, "Why didn't you call down to mommy?  What is the rule when you poop you pants?"  He replied, "I need to tell mommy and not clean it myself."  Okay, so then I asked if he knew the rule, why didn't he call me.  He said in the smallest, saddest voice, "I was too nervous."  Okay- momentarily, I felt badly for him and his humiliation.  We ended up having a really good (I think) conversation about doing the right thing even if we are nervous, even if we are scared, and even if we know we are going to get into trouble.  I told him he'll always be in bigger trouble for hiding the truth because that is lying.  I then made him call Marc (who is away on business) and tell him the truth so he could practice doing the right thing even when it's hard.  He did get a few priviledges taken away- but I reinforced it was not at all for pooping, but for not telling mommy and for trying to hide it.

After an hour of scrubbing and scrubbing with my "heavy duty" carpet cleaning solution- I still had this mess:

so...after dropping off Ava at school we headed to target to buy a machine.  I was standing scanning labels on the machines into my iphone (cuz thru my amazon app, i can then check the reviews on each machine on amazon) trying to figure out the best machine to buy when I notice out of the corner of my eye my son is sucking on a Winnie the Pool water bottle.  SERIOUSLY?!  I had to give a little talk about how we can't put our mouths on things that aren't ours and then I totally had to buy it and one other Mickie bottle he said he had sucked on.  Can I just say I was none too happy inside about having to buy two $8 water bottle we didn't need?  To make it worse, he was so happy we had to buy them, I am really frightened he's going to start putting his mouth on anything he wants to I had to burst his little bubble by saying, "I know you didn't know you weren't supposed to put you mouth on things, but you cannnot get a reward for doing it, even if it was a mistake, so one of these will be for Chloe and one for Ava.  You will not get one."  I hope it wasn't too harsh- he is devastated, but I just can't afford to have this become a habit like his pants peeing.  He's way to prone to testing the waters to take a chance.

Finally, I fear the poop on the carpet lesson is lost as well because I bought this great little maching called the Bissel Smart Shot that cleans for you, but when I ran down stairs, this is where I find my boy- totally intrigued by this "soooo cool" machine.....AYE

Seriously, Phin is cute as a button and I adore him, but I don't think I will ever understand this mischief maker; thank goodness Marc can help me out because today I kind of feel like knocking my head against the wall.

Yep, completely baffling and yet so adorable:

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

I'll never look at Scotch Tape the same again

I had the strangest, funniest phone call of perhaps my entire life today.  I still am laughing about it periodically hours afterward.  I cannot reveal who was on the other end of the call but the conversation went something like this.

Me: Hello
Caller:  Kim! are you every afraid you or the kids will get pin worm?
Me:  No, not at all, I am not exactly sure what they even are.
Caller:  WHAT!?  You are a nurse and you don't know what pin worm is.  It is so common.
Me (laughing):  How common?  I don't know anyone whose ever had pin worm.
Caller:  That is because no one talks about it, but I have been reading about it.  There are 40 million cases in the UNITED STATES, not the world, the United States, every year.  I am freaking out about this.  It is so contagious.  Kids between 5 and 10 mostly have it.  The mom worm lives in the intestines and then she crawls out the butt hole at night and lays eggs.  Kids get itchy butts.  You KNOW kids don't wash their hands, so they itch their butts and boom, the eggs spread to other kids.  It is SO contagious and so disgusting.  I am just sick about it.
Me:  Okay, I know nothing really about it, but now that you mention it, when Ava had an itchy butt they did check for worms.  She didn't have 'em, but really they must be easily cured or people would be talking about it.
Caller:  No one talks about it because who is going to admit they have butt worms?  Oh my goodness!  It is so gross.  Parents have to go into their kids room with a flashlight at night and look for worms.
Me (laughing harder): Wait.  That cannot be true.  I am sure there is a way doctors can test for them.  I cannot imagine a ton of parents being willing to look at their kids butt in the dark with a flash light.
Caller (sort of laughing, sort of in a mild panic):  Well, some do.  I don't think there is a test.  I read that doctors have parents stick a piece of scotch tape over their kid's butt hole at night and when they take it off in the morning if they have pin worms they will find a bunch of little tiny white eggs.  That is not all they find, Kim, sometimes the MOM WORM is ON THE TAPE.  These worms are totally visible to the human eye.  That is disgusting.
Me (laughing almost hysterically):  I cannot wait until you get this.  You are so paranoid about it, I am sure you are GOING to get it because that is the law of nature, Dear.
Caller:   I KNOW and that is making me MORE paranoid.  I had a slight itch on my butt and I stuck scotch tape right on there.  I was so afraid of taking the tape off!!!  I finally worked up the nerve and Thank goodness it did not have a white eggs or a worm!

And that readers is the point in which I completely lost it- lost it.  I was laughing so hard I couldn't speak and thinking about it now I am gasping for air.   Who gets a small itch and then sticks tape on their butt;)?  HILARIOUS, absolutely hilarious.

I am totally shipping my friend a box of scotch tape.;)

This friend DOES read my blog, but I know she'll be too shy to comment since after I calmed down she informed me.  "If I get it, I won't tell anyone either, except maybe my husband cuz if I had it, he'll have to check with scotch tape too.  I wouldn't even tell my mom....and now we are back at the original problem.  People aren't talking enough about this and it is a huge problem!"

OH!  and for all of you rushing out to buy scotch tape.  It IS true that there are 40 million cases, but I've done some reading myself this afternoon.  They are mostly in the south in warm climates....ha ha ha sunny weather folks;)  Also, it is very easily curable.   You just take a pill.  There is an big chance of reinfestation, hence the 40 million cases and not 40 million people.  AND guess what, if you wash your hands, your in good shape.

Good day, good day.  I am totally laughing at said friend's expense, I know, but she's a good sport.  On a more serious note, I know no one talks about it, but seriously, anyone brave enough to comment on their own experience?  I have met no one with this "common" thing....and 40 million does seem like an awful big number.  We do lice checks in school and I looked it up and the incidence of lice is only 10 million a year...crazy.  Now, I am laughing imagining "scotch tape" testing instituted in schools across the country.  I am so immature.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Our Beloved (or not) Window Pecker

I posted last week about the blasted cardinal that was repeatedly attacking my windows.  I just wanted to get a moment of sympathy by making sure you all know HE IS STILL HERE AND STILL PECKING.  I've tried everything short of killing the bird.  I can't say I haven't considered the possibility of that final option; he's darn lucky my favorite color is red!

Indeed there is a little nest in the tree outside our backyard, but the stupid bird still pecks repeatedly.  I am confident at this point it is because he has suffered brain damage.  The websites say he does it to attack his reflection.  They also say they return to the same window.  Not our feathered friend.  He pecks when it is sunny, he pecks when it is cloudy.  There is no reflection and he still pecks.  The window is covered and he still pecks.  He has waged an all out war against our house.  He is even pecking at the second story windows now.  Ava was pretty freaked out by that prospect.  Having him peck the ground floor was annoying; having him outside bedrooms is downright terrifying apparently.  She keeps saying, "MOM!  We have to do something about this bird.  Pretty soon he is going to peck his way through the Window."  I sure hope not....for then I too would be completely terrified.  He's surely deranged...perhaps I am too.

I honestly don't notice much anymore.  It's a permanent part of the background noise I already block out.  The pecking ranks in there with the constant "momma, momma, momma" I hear all day.  If he gets inside, it'll definitely be a situation I'm completely ill equipped to handle.  For the meantime, I just kind of hope he kills himself.  I am totally over being sympathetic.  I've have read and applied the advice of bird experts and tried to help him.  Now, like a rebellious teenager, he just might have to learn from his own mistakes.

He is Risen!!!

Our Easter weekend didn't turned out quite as planned.  The adorable outfits I'd purchased for my children remained on hangers in closets as sickness took over our home.  Still, even in PJ's with snotty noses, we were able to celebrate our risen Savior!

Chloe's first time painting her "Thank You, Jesus" Cross 

Before we know it, her's will be all neat and pretty just like big sisters 

Phin kept telling Chloe, "Jesus died on the cross, Chloe, he did!"

Putting our pipe cleaner Jesus in the tomb after talking about the crucifixion

sealed tightly...

Putting our pictures at the foot of the cross....because Jesus died for each of us

That was Friday.....BUT next came SUNDAY.  HE IS RISEN!!!!!!

It was fun to open the resurrection eggs and see how much more of the story the children recite along with us...more and more each year!

Resurrection rolls for breakfast in celebration of an empty tomb.  Praise you, Jesus!  You conquered the grave.

(Note- I didn't write in detail about each activity because I have blogged about it before here;)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Pinkalicious Party!!!

Saturday was Ava's 6th birthday party.  I cannot believe she's six!  She counted down the days to her party and she's still talking about it almost a week later.  I pray she never outgrows the thrill she finds in celebration.  The theme this year as Pinkalicious.  Pinkalicious is a children's book series; the title book is about a little girl who eats too many pink cupcakes and turns pink.

My baby has grown into a beautiful little lady. 

 Our table- cupcakes matching the ones in the book, strawberries, pink cupcake marshmallows, star sandwiches on pink homemade bread, pink iced animal crackers, strawberries, pink lemonade....and non pink chips;)

As guests were arriving, the girls colored Pinkalicious  pictures.  While they were coloring, I read them the book Pinkalicious

Auntie Karla and baby sister, Chloe;) 

Game numero uno- Pin the Cherry on the Cupcake....made by my friend Nicole (who did a Pinkalicious party last year; I totally stole her theme and this game) 

Musical Chairs with music from Pinkalicious the Musical 

Next, I read the girls Pinkalicious and the Hat Parade

Then we headed into the dining room to make our own hats. 

They had a wide array of supplies to design from... 

Here is Ava's custom creation;) 

Then we had our own little hat parade.  We chanted "Pink is Perfect! Pink is Perfect!" 


My kids never tire of a bit of dancing....Phin was completely unphased by being the only boy present;) 

 Lunch is served!

Blowing out the candles....

I love my daughter; Sure she gets so excited at birthday parties she kind of forgets her manners and is a bit too hyper for my taste, but she also is so thankful and delighted by the smallest things.  She is a sweet little girl who loves life, loves her family, and loves her friends.  I am so thankful for the beautiful little lady she is becoming.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

I've yet to find the time to sit down and upload vacation pictures or pictures from Ava's birthday party.  They will be forthcoming, but today I am really pondering the blessing it is to have healthy children.

A former coworker of Marc's has a little four 1/2 year old girl who is undergoing cancer treatment.  His coworker has a way with words and reading their day to day existence on Caring Bridge is heart wrenching.  They aren't writing for pity, they are simply writing the fact, the struggles their little girls is having,  how they are working with the school to communicate with her preschool class, etc.  It is overwhelming to read and I often wonder if I'd be handling it with the grace they seem to be.

Today, if you aren't explaining to a 4 1/2 year old who loves her hair that she's still beautiful without it,  If you aren't giving your child "magic mouthwash" to numb their mouth and throat full of soars so they can somehow get down food and drink,   If you aren't watching your little one get poked and prodded over and over....say a prayer of thanks.  Our kids health is a gift, a miraculous gift that I take for granted far too often.