Friday, February 27, 2009

I'm crazy, right?

Someone be a voice of reason, please. I am SERIOUSLY considering having my wonderful husband spend a major portion of his Saturday on the road to go get this:



Remember that post about my old dog a week or two ago? Yeah...I found one. And he's adorable.

Monday, February 23, 2009

A Heavy Heart

The adoption process is HARD. There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Its hard. And sometimes bad things happen along the way.

Sometimes paperwork gets lost.

Sometimes birth family members (immediate or extended) decide they want to try to keep the child(ren) they had originally thought they couldn't care for.

Sometimes you have your eyes on a particular child and when you get their paperwork decide he/she isn't the child for you based on a medical test result or some other criteria.

Sometimes things get delayed...and that child you hoped would be home by Christmas doesn't get home until Easter (or later).

Sometimes you hear that chicken pox (or some other contagious disease) is spreading through the orphanage and you lay awake worrying about a child you know is sick...or praying that he/she won't get sick.

Sometimes its hard to watch a child you love grow older and older while you wait to bring him/her home.

Sometimes things happen in the process that just make you want to give up...but you keep going because you know that little one waiting for you is worth it.

Sometimes you fall in love with a child who can never be yours.

And sometimes...the worst happens...and a child dies while someone across the ocean prays for them, waits for them, and loves them.

I have a heavy heart tonight as I think about a little girl who died far before her time. Though she wasn't Twinkie (the little boy we hope will join our family), she had a firm grasp on my heart...and a permanent place in our family.

May Jesus wrap you tightly in His arms tonight, Little Girl!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

The time in which I cancelled all future birthdays....


This past weekend was my birthday. And it stunk.

Quite literally, I'm afraid.

I'll give you just a taste of what our weekend has been like. On Friday, we all came home after a long week and collapsed. Z and I felt pretty terrible, since we've both been struggling with a cold for what seems like weeks. I was running a fever, so even though it was my birthday, I was down for the count at about 9pm.

On Saturday, we decided we'd try to do something fun (even though I still felt pretty rough). Why not drive an hour to go to The Cheesecake Factory to have a really yummy meal, do some window shopping in the mall, and generally have a good day. The trip to the mall started off ok...we went to the bookstore, Z used his gift certificate, and I went to The Body Shop to get some soap.

Then it was off to The Cheesecake Factory. Z and I love it there. And we rarely get to go...so we save it for special occasions.

We had a lovely lunch...the boys shared an appetizer and Z and I shared my favorite pasta. We ate bread, drank our Cokes, and had a wonderful time hanging out in the great table they put us at (one of those half-circle booths - we had a ton of space).

Then, we were going to make a quick trip to the bathroom before heading back out to the mall to do some bummin'.

I have to admit that I heard Jellybean say that he had to do #2, so I quickly told Z that I would take Peanut to the bathroom with me and he could take Jellybean. When I got into the bathroom with Peanut, though, I realized that I had made a bad choice. We crammed ourselves into one of the small stalls of the busy women's bathroom, I got his coat off, and let him do his business. But I noticed there was an, umm, odor. I looked down and realized that someone had, let's just say, had an accident (WHILE WE WERE EATING AT THE CHEESECAKE FACTORY!!!).

So, I asked him..."Peanut, did you have an accident? Did you go poop in your pants?"

"No", he says as he shakes his head adamantly.

"Are you sure?"

"No...I didn't"

"Hmm...then someone else must have had an accident in your pants."

So...this is the conversation that quickly ended our trip to the mall. By the end of our trip to the bathroom, I had to clean up, um, #2 from a certain little boy, his pants, his jacket, my hands, his hands, and the toilet paper dispenser. Oh so GROSS!! Let's just say that I am glad I carry antibacterial hand-wipes in my purse.

I'll also say that the weekend hasn't really gotten much better. Zack spent an hour and a half in the bathroom/hallway with Jellybean this evening cleaning up a toilet over-flow because a certain little boy has taken to putting LOTS of toilet paper in the toilet these days. Now he knows why we tell him NOT to do that.

I've decided that 31 is not for me. I'm turning this bus around and heading right back to 30. Thankyouverymuch.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Enough with the pinching already!

This weekend, half of us had colds. Yucky ones. The kind of cold where your nose starts running just because you stood up. The kind where an ever-increasing set of disgusting side effects are triggered by a sneeze. Not so pleasant around our house this weekend. I keep thinking that my cold is on its way out...but then it just keeps on lingering. I'm sick of it (pardon the pun)!

My husband, the penny pincher of the family (which is something that I usually love about him), has decided that the waste of Kleenexes around our house has gotten out of control. Peanut is a little obsessive about cleanliness...he'll simply wipe his nose and throw away a tissue to get a new one to blow into. Its wasteful. And Z has decided he's had enough of it.

So, over the course of the weekend, Peanut has gotten some reminders to hang on to his Kleenex. To save it and use it again. He'd put it in his pocket and use it the next time. Then run to the bathroom, throw it away and put a new one in his pocket for later.

This morning I woke up, headed to the bathroom, and reached for a Kleenex. But, I didn't get a nice clean tissue on the first try. Instead, I got a half snotty, crusty tissue. Apparently, Peanut took Z's advice to heart. But since his pajamas don't have pockets...he thought the Kleenex box was the best place to put his half-used tissue. Eww.

I'm of the opinion that if there's snot on the Kleenex, you can throw it away.

Maybe I need to get everyone some handkerchiefs to use. At least those wouldn't disintegrate in the washing machine and make a huge mess when I do laundry.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Tell me I'm not the only one....



Ok...today I've been terribly unproductive. Terribly unproductive. Well, except for the laundry. I got that done. And I made a grocery list and had Z go grocery shopping. But I had planned to get a bunch of actual "work" done today, and that just isn't happening.

Instead, I spent a big portion of my day looking at adorable dogs on petfinder.org.

I'm crazy, right?

During times of emotional turmoil I always gain tremendous comfort from my pets. Pets (especially dogs, it seems) are so good at knowing just when you need the extra love and attention. They cuddle right in and give kisses. And they don't care whether or not you've done your hair or make-up today. Our pets are a part of our family. No question about it. When we bring a pet into our home, we make a life-long commitment to it. We think long and hard before bringing a new pet into our home. But today....I think today I could have just gone right out to the shelter and picked up a puppy. I didn't, mind you...but I sure did spend a lot of time looking at them.

Looking at these dogs online made me start missing Toby again. My beloved Old English Sheepdog. So I did a little more Google searching online and saw some adorable pictures of some OES puppies. I'm totally smitten. And longing for another OES. I know that a new dog can never replace a beloved pet...but there is just something about the temperment of an Old English Sheepdog.

And who wouldn't love a puppy who looks like this? And I can tell you from experience that they are VERY soft!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Goin' on a Date!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

My dear friend Karen has volunteered to babysit the boys for us tonight...so that means Z and I get to go on a date! We haven't been on one of those for a while. We even have dinner reservations at my very favorite restaurant (a Thai restaurant in our fair city). Yum! We'll have dinner and dessert, followed by a movie (though we're not sure which one yet).

And Karen...well...she'll be in for an interesting evening kid-sitting the boys. I'm sure with all the valentine candy floating around here, the movie they'll watch, and the caffeine-free soda they'll drink tonight she'll be busy (and likely very ready to go home when we get back)! But, the boys love Karen...and I know they'll have a good time.

Thanks to all of you who said such kind words during my moments of discouragement about Twinkie's situation. I know that if it is God's will, then things will work out and Twinkie will join our family. That's what we want...and we'll wait until we get the verdict.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Feeling Attacked

I have to be totally honest here and preface this post by saying that I generally don't believe in the "Satan is attacking me because I'm doing something that God wants me to do" statements. I've heard lots of people say (or write) things like that and my usual response is that people just feel attacked because there is simply a coincidence between choosing to follow what you feel is God's plan for your life and the "bad stuff" that's happening. Bad stuff happens all the time.

When we first heard about Twinkie, we weren't sure we could pursue his adoption. We certainly wanted to, but we didn't know how we'd ever afford to do it. It was't until we heard a certain piece of information about him, I got a new job, and we were able to purchase a new house that we finally felt like enough things had come together (all within a week's time) that we were being directed to pursue Twinkie's adoption. It wasn't just about what we wanted anymore...it was about what we were SUPPOSED to do. So even though we didn't know how we'd afford it all, we stepped out in faith.

These days, though...the path is looking ragged...the directions are unclear...and the uncertainty is looming. Did we take a wrong turn?

There have been developments in Ghana that make Twinkie's ability to be adopted uncertain. We've been hit with unexpected expenses (that add up quickly and totally cut into any extra money we might have been able to set aside for the adoption). We've discovered bats in our cute little house (yuck-o), I just spent a crazy amount of money taking my beloved Paka (cat) to the veterinarian, and the attorney fees for the readoption of our boys in our state cost twice what we were expecting. Not to mention other expenses that are unavoidable when you move into a new place.

We're just feeling overwhelmed at the moment. I feel like a big old log has been put right in front of our path...and now we have to spend time figuring out if the log can be pushed out of the way, whether we can climb over it, whether it needs to be chopped up into little pieces and moved, or whether it means we simply have to turn back and find a new path.

I still don't know if I believe whether or not all of this "bad stuff" is stuff that Satan is throwing at us because we're on a path to do something great. Its all just bad stuff...and it probably would have happened regardless of Twinkie's existence (well, except for the Twinkie-related news in Ghana). But, man! Now I totally understand how people could feel that way!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Sad Days

I've been feeling sad these last couple of days. We received news about Twinkie's situation in Ghana that was disappointing and troubling. We don't know what this news means in terms of him joining our family. We want him to...and we are praying in the end it will all still work out....but my mind has begun trying to prepare my heart for disappointment. I feel numb.

I keep going back and forth between thinking that I want to just curl in a ball and sleep for a while (hoping that the situation would be resolved when I wake up) and that I want to just hop on the next plane to Ghana to scoop him up and love him...even if it is just for a little while. Unfortunately, neither one of those options is really viable at the moment.

I can't share the details here...but there is a little boy in Ghana who's in a tough situation. Please say some prayers on his behalf.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Fishing


Here's what the boys did today...while I was at home nursing my cold. For some strange reason, the boys have (knock on wood) remained healthy, while the grown-ups in our house have managed to catch the plague. Z is on his way to feeling a little more like normal, while I am somewhere in the middle of the yuckiness. Hopefully this passes quickly - I simply don't have time to be sick.

The boys tell me they had a great time ice fishing. We had a wonderfully warm and sunny day here today, so Z decided to take advantage of the weather while he could and get the boys outside to fish! Just 13 months ago they were living in Accra, Ghana. I'm sure they never dreamed that a frozen lake even existed...let alone that they could sit on it and go fishing!