My blog has moved….

Oh yes it has finally happened. Aaron has helped me out tremendously this weekend and i have a NEW blog. Oh I love it and I want you to come check it out and add it to your RSS feeder. This will be my LAST post over here, so make sure you follow me over to the new site.

DreamingBigDreams.net is where you can find me now!

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Christmas card Tradition

One tradition that I started in our family the first Christmas that we were married was saving our Christmas card pictures and letters each year and putting them in a book!

I get this book out each year after Thanksgiving and it is there for me to look through and be reminded of friends and family from years pasts.  I keep every picture and letter and they are stored in here.  It is so fun to watch friends get married, get dogs then have kids all throughout this book!

When Christmas cards arrive at our house I am so thrilled.  I truly love them.  If it’s just a card, then I tape the card to the kitchen cabinets as decoration.  I truly think Aaron hates this, but who cares, right!  I might try the back door this year though.  If it’s a picture card it goes on the bulletin board in our breakfast room.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE filling that thing up with pictures.  This past year it was packed and I just think we might need to add another board!

The day my first Christmas card arrives (thanks Mandi Jo!!) I take all the old cards off and put them in the binder and start adding the new cards to the board!  So far we’ve gotten three cards and one birth announcement (those go up there too and usually make the book too).  I love looking at all of our friends and family’s faces throughout the year.  When guests come over they migrate to this board and check out all of our friends.  It is so fun!

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

cupcakes and turkey heads.

My mom hates to miss the kids birthday parties, so since she missed Deacon’s and we haven’t yet had one for Story she had a small party at her house. Cupcakes were consumed by all kids and Deacon and Story enjoyed opening their gifts!

My super big FOUR year old!

My sweet sweet baby girl Story!

The cutest Turkey around!

stocking stuffers

I am so excited!  I finally bought some stockings for my kids.  Each year I want to buy nice stockings with their names on them and I can never convince myself to spend the money.  Believe it or not, spending money is sometimes hard for me to do.  I know, crazy.

I have been saving my “plasma money” and have all the stockings hung up on the mantel.  Oh they look cute.

*Don’t worry, Amos’ is getting ordered soon!

 

I just ordered this cd to put in one of the stockings:  Ross King WORDS THAT RHYME WITH ORANGE

I figure I’ll find another cd for Deacon’s stocking and Story’s.

 

So …. what do you put in your kids stockings?  Aaron says he used to get batteries for all his new toys.  My kids aren’t getting toys that need batteries.  I used to get candy, gum, toothbrush, new socks and undies.  What did you get when you were little?  What do you do now?

 

 

 

Story’s piano shirt

I have a new friend!  Her name is Laura and I think we found each other online through our mutual friend Maris.  Don’t you just love how the internet works that way.  I started following her blog after I saw the adorable shirt she made for sweet August.  I have loved her stuff ever since, and she is also an adoptive mom so that is a another connecting point for us.

 

A few weeks ago she contacted me b/c she wanted to make a gift for Story.  I was so excited and told her to do whatever she wanted!  I’m not very creative, so I like to let the creative people just do their thang!  She then emailed me to tell me she was almost done and she would send me pictures.  I emailed her and said no pictures, just send it in the mail!  It was like Christmas morning.

I knew when it arrived b/c it was in the cutest little mail package and so we all gathered around (well, I made Aaron stop what he was doing and gather, Story was in the room, and the boys refused to come and look) and opened it up to find the cutest shirt with piano keys on it!  I LOVE it so much!

 

I haven’t let Story wear it yet b/c I have the perfect occasion and I can’t risk something happening to it before then.  Head on over to Laura’s blog: Pitter Patter Art to see PICTURES of this adorable shirt!

Happy 2nd Birthday Story!

Today my baby girl turns 2 years old!  I can’t even believe it and honestly it seems kinda weird.  I mean I’ve known her and visited her for the past two years but we are really just getting to know each other over this past month!  So, it seems silly to have a birthday since we just met.

 

This morning the boys and I sang “happy birthday” to her and she sang right along as if we weren’t singing to her, but yet someone else.  She has no idea it’s her birthday!  We plan on having a party for her in a few weeks, so then we’ll really celebrate her life!

 

Many of you ask how Story came into our lives.  Well, here it is ….

 

When we were in the adoption process with Amos we kept going back to adopting two kids at the same time.  We knew that we did want two children from Haiti in our family so that Amos would not be the only Haitian child, but we figured we would get through one and then start another one.  Oh my word am I glad we didn’t stick to that plan after how long this process takes!

 

So, around early November we mentioned to both Licia and our facilitator that we were interested in adopting another child at the same time.  Although we had never requested a sex for any of our kids I knew that this was my last child and that I really desired a girl, so we requested a girl.  We didn’t even ask for a specific age, we just asked for a girl.  Our facilitator then sent us numerous pictures of sweet, beautiful little girls that needed a mommy and they were all precious and fabulous but I didn’t feel that special feel for any of them.  I wanted God to literally show me through my heart strings which child was for us.

 

I told her that we would continue to look and pray but we weren’t willing to make a decision yet.  I didn’t want to rush feelings that weren’t there, and was asking God to make it perfectly clear where our daughter was.

 

Life went on and we continued to pray and headed to Houston for the Thanksgiving holiday.  That week Licia asked me if I would pray for Carmelo’s (her son) mom who was having a baby.  I jumped on it and prayed for her as she delivered her child without hospitals or medical care.

 

Life went on.  Thanksgiving came and went.  We were still at my parents when I received an email from Licia that literally changed our lives.  She states that Caremelo’s mom had delivered a beautiful little girl (the day after Thanksgiving) and she wanted to place that child with a family b/c she wasn’t sure she could parent.  She then told me that she had brought the child to Licia and wanted to leave her, but Licia sent them away to make sure this is what they really wanted.  She told me that she had no idea if they would still want to do this, but would we be willing to adopt her.  She told me that Carmelo had suggested to his mom that she ask the people that were adopting Amos if they would adopt her as well.

 

Oh my word we were freaking out.  Licia wouldn’t send us pictures just in case it didn’t happen.  She didn’t want our hearts to be broken.  🙂  So, we waited.  I remember telling my grandma what we were doing and I think she thought we were crazy.  FOUR kids!  Now I know she was right …. FOUR kids is crazy!  Oh but how thankful we are for the way God has orchestrated our family.

 

So, Story’s mom did return with her and that is how our story began with her.  Story and Licia’s son Carmelo share the same birth mom and for that I am thankful.  They for sure have a special bond along with the whole clan at RHFH.  She has changed our hearts and lives forever and I can’t imagine not being Story’s mom.  She for sure has a story to tell and I trust that God has big plans for her life and her 3 crazy brothers!

 

Happy Birthday to my sweet baby girl!

 

Sept 2008:

 

Story and her Mom – December 2008

 

December 2008

 

 

 

Story and her grandma:

 

Heartline: running for a cause!

There are a group of women that are embarking on a huge task and they are rocking it. There are some women (and men, although I’ll only refer to the women b/c that’s all i know!) that will be running the Disney half and full marathon in January. They aren’t just running to get their best time or to feel good about themselves, but yet they are running to raise money for a great cause!

After my first trip to Haiti I came home and began trying to find anyone and everyone that was working and serving and living in Haiti. I wanted to know what they were doing and I wanted to learn more about Haiti. I had been on a short term trip, but knew that Haiti would be in my life forever. Little did I know at the time that I would have two children from Haiti!

One of the people that I met on the internet was Tara Livesay. About a year and a half later Aaron and I led a team to Haiti and Tara and her husband, Troy, were our hosts and guides and cooks and everything else!

On that trip we were exposed to HEARTLINE. We went to their building and got the grand tour. I was in awe of how they run things there. They really know what they are doing and b/c of that women’s lives are literally being changed.

The sewing program was amazing to me. I brought a purse home with me on that trip and then purchased a few smaller ones for gifts. They are each made by a women in the sewing program and then sold and that women gets to keep her profits. WOMEN’S LIVES ARE CHANGING. They are now creating their own destiny.

Their prenatal program rocks. They are educating women on how to be good mothers and how to nurse their babies and how to feed their babies. They are giving them the knowledge that they need to parent their child and parent them well.

The HEARTLINE RUNNERS are running to raise money for an ambulance to help transport women to the local hospital if they cant deliver at home. To read about their goal visit here: http://heartlinerunners.blogspot.com/2009/10/our-specific-goal.html

I donated a few dollars the other day and so can you. I plan on giving more to this great cause b/c it’s something that I believe in and can stand behind. I have seen this organization. I have met their leaders. They are THE REAL DEAL and they serve Haitian women with their whole heart and soul.

To donate please head to their website and go to the chip in button and start your giving: http://heartlinerunners.blogspot.com/

And if you want to get something for your donation, here is one of the runners that has a ton of raffles going on.  Maybe you’ll donate in hopes of winning something.  That usually helps me!  http://watchingthewaters.wordpress.com

playing outside.

My kids love to play in the driveway much more than they like to play in the back yard.  I think they like to ride their scooters and such so a couple of times a week I get a chair, a good book and maybe a diet coke and enjoy the sounds of my kids playing.

 

Last week I took some pictures of them playing:

 

Cayden insisted on wearing Deacon’s Buzz suit from when Deacon was 2!  Yeah, Cayden is almost 6!

 

 

 

I’m bringing Mac N Cheese to Thanksgiving. You?

Where did November go? I always feel so old when I say that, but seriously it seems as though just yesterday it was October and now Thanksgiving is a week away. Wow! Story turns TWO next Tuesday. I can’t believe that either. She’s the last of the November birthday’s in our family!

I love Thanksgiving. I think I love it because I love my Mimi’s dressing. I mean seriously i could eat that thing out of the pan for days with nothing else. Just that. Oh I can already taste it. I have made it for the past two Thanksgiving’s and mine is just okay. Mimi’s is fabulous.

This year for Thanksgiving I’m contributing mac n’ cheese at both family’s houses. Sounds simple and easy, right. Well this mac n cheese is not simple or easy. Well, actually I take that back. For me this mac n’ cheese is VERY simple. But for Molly who’s making it, not so much. Yeap I’m ordering food to take to my family’s house for Thanksgiving. Does that make me weird or very smart? Someone brought this mac n’ cheese to us after we brought Story home and we all loved it. Even Aaron!

If I was thinking about making anything else I might head on over to the CHEAP HEALTHY GOOD blog to get lots of great ideas.

If I was even nicer I would head on over to the A YEAR OF SLOWCOOKING blog and get great recipes that are gluten free since my mom has celiac.

But I’ll stick to my mac n cheese made by a professional and just maybe I’ll get mom of the year by making these with my kids: RICE KRISPY TURKEYS – who knows though b/c I saved this originally to do last year and it didn’t happen.

What are you making for Thanksgiving?

*Oh and Cayden informed me today that we are not to call them Indians, but National Americans. I think he meant Native Americans! My grandpa would be so proud! He’s second from the right!

Amos lost a tooth.

During one of my pouting sessions while waiting on my kids to come home I happened to talk to my friend Lori.  She has been so great for me during this whole process.  She has 3 children that were adopted from Haiti and that is always such a comfort to talk to someone who has been there done that.

 

In one of our conversations she told me that when Story came home I would find myself thinking about Amos less.  She didn’t mean I would forget about my son, she meant I wouldn’t be crying over my salad at lunch, I wouldn’t cry ever time I saw a four year old little boy and I wouldn’t be sitting on the couch every night crying my eyes out.  I thought she was crazy and that I wouldn’t even be able to be happy after Story came home.  I thought I would be so sappy over Amos not being here that I would be a bad mom to my three kids that were home.

 

Fast forward a few weeks and here I am at home with only one of my kids from Haiti.  Story’s home.  Amos is not.  It’s been 25 days and I have to admit that Lori was right.  There’s a part of me that hates that she was right, but there’s another part of me that is glad she was right.  You see I’m giving my WHOLE self and heart to Story.  I thought I wouldn’t be able to do that if Amos wasn’t here, but I’m proving that I can.  I’m trying to live in the moment of my life right now.  To not live in sadness b/c Amos isn’t here, but live in joy b/c Story IS here.  Thanks to God I am doing it.

 

Tonight will be my first time to have those moments of complete sadness and yearning for my child to be home.  Not a day goes by that I don’t think of Amos, but honestly most of my energy & thoughts these days go to loving on THREE kids.  Our home is adjusting to another person, another child and another personality.  We are consumed with our family and loving every minute of it.

 

Today I learned that Amos lost his first tooth.  I called Aaron immediately to tell him the good news and also to express my sadness in all the “firsts” that we are missing with him.  I said to Aaron, “what’s left?”  I started to feel like every day, week, month and year that goes by we lose more and more “firsts” with our son.  I mean for the love he just lost his first tooth and his momma and papa weren’t there to cheer him on and talk about the tooth fairy.  His first tooth is out.  My son just lost his first tooth and I wasn’t there.  Gosh, this whole wait just sucks.

 

So, tonight I’m retreating to my old self.  Thinking of my child in Haiti and crying and begging God to hurry this up.  The difference in my thoughts and cries tonight is that my trust has increased by enormous amounts in the past few weeks.  I have seen God bring my daughter home in PERFECT TIMING.  I used to tell God all the time that I did not like his timing and thought he didn’t know what was right.  I’ve eaten all those words and have told God numerous times in these past 25 days that his perfect timing has blown me away.  That his plan is best.  That he truly does know what he’s doing!  Just saying that makes me smile.  I’m 31, love Jesus with all my heart, soul and mind and am STILL learning that he knows what he’s doing!  🙂

 

So, tonight as I cry over my son’s first tooth coming out I am also remembering the goodness that God has shown me in the past month.  The valley that we had to go through, and are still going through,  was and is for a purpose.  God has a purpose for Amos.  He has a purpose for Amos’ mommy.  I’m clinging to my God through this.  He is all I have.