"" Life A Bit Sweeter: September 2011

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

My Birth Mom's Birthday

Yesterday was the birthday of my birth mom, Karen or Kay as she was affectionately known. By my calculations, she would have been 62 yesterday.  She died 19 days before her 31st birthday.  I was just turning 5 the following month.  Life changed so quickly during those months and then the subsequent years for my brother and I as we split into separate homes.

I had such a GREAT time today as I sat with my Aunt Johnette and cousin John as they shared stories about how my mom used to sit on the couch, suck her thumb, and how much of a home body she was.  I ate every single one of those details up and always yearn to know more and more and more about her.  I yearn to know what her voice sounded like but people didn't record like they do now.  Instead, I inquire here and there with relatives to get more details. Photos of my mom are very rare and I only own one. She was totally not into the whole picture-taking thing....I'm beginning to think she was a total introvert....totally opposite of the little girl to whom she gave birth!  LOL.

As we move further into this adoption journey, I think more and more about Selah and her mom.  As she grows older, will she wonder about some of the same things that I do and have?  Will she yearn to know her birth mother more....her voice....her touch...her mannerisms?  I'm absolutely positive that the answer is yes.  I pray that God grants us the opportunity to meet her mother in order to learn as much as possible in our brief meeting. That meeting would be as priceless as the little girl she and I will share.

Every child needs a mother and a father for two distinct reasons.  I am so grateful that God loved me so much that He did not forget my deep need for a mother-figure/mother in my life. I remember my mom (Grace) who raised me as her child after my mom died, told me that she would never try to take the place of my mom. I am forever grateful for her articulating those words to me because my birth mother is not my past or a fading memory. She is very present in the pages of my life as I continue to grow and even sometimes reflect 'Kay' in pieces of me.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Age Request Change & Home Study Update

Woo hoo! Yesterday afternoon, our social worker came by to do our home study update since a year has passed since our last home study approval. Things went well.

The one change:  we confirmed that we would like to increase our age range request just a little.  It was a hard decision just because of fears but heck...this whole adoption journey is often filled with fear of the unknown. It has felt like promptings from God to make this move but we also wanted to be sure.  To help with my fears about adopting a child a tad older, I called on my friend, Christine, who adopted a toddler.  Christine's candor, love, and support was such a huge blessing to me.

So what's next....we wait for our update to be written and then we wait some more to see what age range God chooses.  Who knows....we may be matched next year with a baby or perhaps even a toddler (about 2 years old).

Stay tuned........

Monday, September 19, 2011

I Used To Celebrate DTE Anniversaries....now, not so much.

I remember getting our dossier to Ethiopia (DTE) was such a happy day....January 7th! We were beyond thrilled because it meant we could begin the countdown to the approximate number of months it would take before we were matched with our daughter.  Like many waiting families, we would do something special on the 7th of each month to celebrate our DTE Anniversary.  First, we started off trying something healthy to eat but then my Paula Deen lovin' country self got bored with that and decided to serve someone in the community instead on these months.  It was fun...it was lively....it was fantastic counting down those months UNTIL we found out through our agency that the wait to be matched with our daughter would now be longer than the original 9 months or so. The wait grew to 12-18 months and at this point, I'm thinking perhaps even longer.  I know there are some good reasons for the extensions and our agency is working their tooshies off to make sure things are done ethically which I soooooo appreciate.

Although I've been busy with nesting and I am truly loving it, the truth about today is that for some reason it's hard.  Yep, it's one of those days for me.  I know all the pick-me up points and encouragements like "In God's timing" and "He's working it out behind the scenes".  Those are the same words I use to encourage other moms who are on this side of the coin.  I know that I have to be patient but in the meantime, what do I do with this aching mommy heart that longs for the face of a little person who I can only dream about right now.  It stinking hurts.  Yet, I know no matter how much this hurts today, right now....I have to take my heart, even while it's hung low to my Father.  It's only Him that can get me through this valley.

Perhaps I'll be ready to celebrate DTE anniversaries again but right now approaching our nine month mark in a couple of weeks doesn't exactly have me doing cartwheels......and that's real talk.

I almost didn't hit publish on this post but from the very beginning I promised to be honest about my journey....so here goes...............

Nesting: TLC Just for Me!

Nesting is absolutely glorious! I've been busy getting my house, family, and yes even me into a better rhythm.  Ya know when a mama bird is preparing her home or 'nest' for the arrival of her little baby birds.  This weekend, I got to focus on little ol' me! (smile).  I think it's super important that as women, we take care of ourselves and that we FEEL GOOD ABOUT OURSELVES! ....and seriously, with all of the running around that happens, often mommies put their care on the backburner.

Since I'm on vacation from work for 2 weeks to really focus on nesting, I decided this past weekend, there were 3 things that I did (started doing) that I'm so, so happy about:

#1.  Got my hair dyed....yep, I'm still my natural deep black but the strands of gray are gone! Gone! Gone! Gone! Woo hoo!

#2.  Got a facial.  I've had these little holes and blackhead-looking critters sitting on my face and I hated the way my skin look.  I went to see an aesthetician Sunday morning and she literally spoiled me rotten for about 2 hours.  At the end of my appointment, my dull, flaky, dry skin was glowing like nobody's business.  All this time, I've thought that my skin was dry when in fact, it's actually oily.  Go figure!

#3.  Started drinking water.  I know, I know, I know.  We should all drink water but this girly hates the taste and loves everything sweet.  Seeing as though I need to set a great example for my boys AND I love looking at my glowing complexion, water is going to become my best friend.  Yep, I even downloaded a water app on my iPhone....it's that serious! LOL.

What I love about this whole nesting process is that not only am I getting my dwelling house in order, but I'm also getting my physical body or home in order.  Life is good and I feel good too!

What do you do or want to do to take care of you?

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Nesting: Organizing the Kids' Lives (Fabric Magnet Board)

Now that school's back in session, there is just so much to juggle...doctor appointments, school projects, football schedules, basketball schedules...you get the picture.  For me, putting these things in a file cabinet is not a good idea...ya know...out of sight, out of mind. Yep, that's right!  So, I needed a solution to keep it all together.  When I saw this board, I instantly wanted to start creating.....
BUT there was one problem.  I remembered that we'll have an infant/toddler in our home soon so a bulletin board with pointy tacks didn't seem to be a win.  Time for adjustments! I started thinking and realized that a magnet board might be a better alternative.  I was going to go with sheet metal but the sheets at my local Home Depot store were too small and they were pretty banged up.  Then, I found a cool tutorial using an Ikea magnet board and I was back in gear again.
...and voila! Here's our neat-o version complete with some racing car magnets I made for the boys.  I'm still trying to decide what kind of magnets I want to go with Little Miss Lady's board.  Each of kids have their own boards.  The boys are on the outside and Selah's board is sandwiched right in the middle of her big bros.  Love getting organized!

What's your favorite tip for organizing your kids and family?

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Nesting Has Begun!

If you were to look up the words "busy bee", you'd see my face right next to the definition....go 'head....go look it up. (smile)  Seriously though....I am a true busy bee.  I've been like this since 'forever'...well almost forever.  I love taking on projects, tasks, and learning new skills.  It's just the way that I'm wired.  I enjoy hard work and being challenged.  At the same time, I'm very clear that I can't keep up this same pace when Ms. Selah arrives home.  I truly believe with all my heart that God wants me to start now with making some transitions and better choices to bring better balance to our household, our life, and our future together as a family.  And if I don't....well this wait time is going to be EXTRA long until I get it together because he loves her too much.  So my friends 'nesting' has begun!

Don't get me wrong...we're doing pretty good as a family in terms of spending time together, running to activities, and just plain ol' living and loving on each other.  Yet, I'm also clear that when Selah arrives, she and our household are going to require a level of attention, bonding, and balance unlike anything that was needed after I gave birth to my two sons.

So follow along on this journey as I share some of my 'projects, routines, and milestones' that I'll be working towards over these next 7 or so months while we wait to be matched with our daughter.  (Yep, I'm thinking it may be that long before we actually even see her face or know who she is BUT....it's all good.  Her mama has lot's of preparing to work on for her arrival!)

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