Thursday, May 31, 2012

Summer cleaning

Well, the unofficial start to Summer was really hot. And now it is cooler, so I am remembering that it is still May and not July.

I have caught some sort of house cleaning bug. We never, never, never have time to "Spring" clean in the actual Spring, so I decided to start tackling those jobs now. So far this week, I have cleaned out/reorganized the foyer closet (2-hour job) and the master bedroom and closet (2 day job). Whew! There was a lot of...shall we say, shifting...of stuff, and piles and piles of things without homes made their way to what we are now calling the baby's room. Because the baby's room is the last stop on this whirlwind of insane cleaning, and cleaning IT is going to be a doozy!

In the meantime, though, I have a bedroom that has somehow doubled in size! And a closet that I can walk into!! These things make a big difference.

I'm mostly just trying to keep busy to keep my mind off of the promising lead that we are not talking about. OK then! Mission accomplished! I've been too busy to even remember to eat the last couple of days. It has only been Olivia sneaking food that has reminded me of mealtimes. Oops.

Poor Olivia. She had to fend for herself for quite awhile yesterday when I was in the thick of it. Today, I will reward her patience with a mommy-daughter shopping trip. I think we both need a break from the cleaning.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Shiny happy day

Sometimes I hate hormones. Yesterday was just a bad combination of a certain time of the month plus babies and adoptions happening all around. (At least it seemed to be happening all around.)

Today, I called our local DCS adoption specialist about adopting through foster care. I got some excellent information and the specialist was so helpful. This is something that has been percolating in my mind for awhile, and I like the idea of pursing licensing while we are waiting on our agency to match us with a child.

So I skipped off to Local Theme Park, Olivia and friends in tow, with a much sunnier disposition than I had yesterday.

When we got home, I had a message about a promising lead from our agency. So. Do a little happy dance.

Essentially, things are still the same as they were yesterday. But these phone calls today...they give me a boost of hope. I'm not ready to be more specific about the lead. I just thought we'd move on from the depressive state of things we've had here and before I did that, I wanted to share my hope with you!

Have a happy day!

Thursday, May 24, 2012


This week, our dear friends finalized the adoption of their one-year-old foster child, whom they've parented since she was 3 months old. She is their third child, all three adopted. She will be baptized this weekend.

Today, a single mother we know had a baby, her fourth, but the first that (she hopes) she gets to keep. The others were removed to foster care. She believes she has cleaned up her life. I hope, for this baby's sake, that she has.

On Tuesday, I wrote this month's check for "marketing and advertising" to our adoption agency. Every month that I write that check, it feels like rejection. I called for our update and learned that the birthmother they called us about a few weeks ago has chosen another family. We are "out" to four others who haven't yet chosen. I know that these women have a lot to consider when choosing a family for their babies, and it is a choice that is entirely theirs. I cannot even imagine being in that position. But it still hurts to be passed over time and time again.

Yesterday, my body gave me a physical reminder once again that, for me, conception is a pipe dream. I am dependent on another mother entrusting me with the job of mothering her child. I have to "sell" these women on my family. I have never been much of a salesman.

June is our "off" month. We'll still be "shown", but not to anyone due immediately because of our big family vacation at the end of the month (read: expensive long extended-family gathering that has been a year in the planning). So I'll try to put this aside for awhile and write only about happy and fun things for awhile. Like vacation. And getting to meet some pretty cool mommy bloggers while on vacation. More on that later.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

My brain is full. Need a dose of Summer vay-cay

I feel like something is slowly eating my brain away. I have projects going on here and there and then just when I feel like I have things under control, I go and forget a major for which I was responsible on the scheduling end...and then I just feel stupid.

(Luckily, the meeting is scheduled for Monday, next, and someone reminded me of it, and I have nothing else on the calendar and can still go. So I won't look THAT long as I remember to spend some time creating an agenda so we don't all end up staring at each other for an hour wondering what it is we were going to discuss.)

So. Three of my babysitting kids have their last day here  tomorrow and then won't return until the beginning of school in August. The other kids only come two days a week, so this marks the beginning of our Summer. Olivia's last day of school is Tuesday. And my other job (the non-babysitting Summer one) kicks into high gear this weekend. Things never, ever slow down in the Summer. Note to self: STOP EXPECTING IT TO HAPPEN!

We have two vacations scheduled in small one and one really big one. And there is planning and packing to do for both of those. And then there are these other responsibilities for other ministries that will continue to exist despite my tendency to use Summer as a big hole in the sand into which I can stick my head and ignore the rest of the world for awhile.

What I'd rather do? I'd rather be spending my days following my sweet four-and-a-HALF year old around Local Theme Park as she plays on the water slides and spontaneously breaks out into a dance routine to whatever upbeat tune is piping through the waterpark. She entertains me (and others) a lot with her spontaneous dancing. Ahhh, to live with such joy and lack of concern for anything outside of the moment...

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The performer

Olivia's preschool had its Spring program last night. This involves three separate preschool classes each having their turn standing on the risers and "singing" their selection of preschool songs.

Olivia's class was first. As the tallest kid in class, she always gets to stand in the center of the back row. But don't let that fool you...she was the star for sure. Kid knows what she's doing when it comes to performing. She holds to the cadence and sings loudly for all to hear. In fact, when you play back the recording, hers is the voice you hear.

She makes me laugh so much. Most of their songs have a lot of repetition, as preschool songs often do, so sometimes it is hard to define an end. Especially if you forget which verse you just completed. So, after three verses of the first song, the teacher signaled that it was over. But Olivia wasn't watching, and she started right in on the third verse (again). She was the only one singing for the first few words, but that didn't bother her. She just kept on singing, loud and strong, until the rest of the class joined in.

Kid knows how to barrel through mistakes in a performance. I think that skill may serve her well.

Friday, May 4, 2012

There is a teeny part of my brain that thinks they do this to torture me

This week has been particularly hard with regard to the adoption wait. Perhaps it is the fact that I have time on my hands for the first time in weeks. Or maybe it is this week's money panic that made me shake my fist at the Mean Monthly Marketing Fee. (Which, by the way, is about the same as the average family's car payment. Makes me very thankful that we don't have car payments. How do people do that?)

But the point is, I've been struggling. Wondering. Pondering. Obsessing.

I decided to call the agency for our monthly report, which I try to avoid if possible. The report tells you how many women, who haven't yet decided on a family, currently have your profile. The call is usually upbeat and positive and gives you a little boost of optimism. I avoid it because that little boost of optimism feeds my tendency to obsess. But the week I was having...well, I kind of needed that boost.

So I called. This week, we are "out" to four women who haven't yet chosen a family. She also said that we had been going out a lot because our profile fit the requests of most of the intakes they've had. It's just that those who have chosen already...they haven't chosen us.

So I asked a couple of questions and, perhaps, let my frustration with the wait shine through just a teeny bit. The counselor was, of course, very reassuring, blah, blah. Of course, she's not the one writing this marketing check every month.

Later the same day, I got a call from the agency. There was a call that morning from a woman who wanted a "very open" adoption with identifying information, etc. They wanted to show our profile (and four others) but wanted to check on the "very open" thing first. Not all couples are OK with that. We are.

And now I have something new to obsess about. And I'm reminded about WHY they don't tell you how often your profile is sent out unless you ask. It is torture.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

It's all about love

On our way to the funeral home, Olivia starts rummaging through her purse. She pulled out a little ceramic dinosaur bobble-head that she had painted last week.

"Can I give this to Isaac, Mommy?"

I said, "Oh, honey, that is so very sweet. You want to leave your dinosaur for Isaac?"

Olivia: "Yes, I want him to know that I love him. But he died, so can I put it on his box (casket)? So he will know that I love him?"

Be still my heart.


"Mommy, can we put our love on Isaac's box?"

What do you mean?

"I want to put our love on the box so he can take it with him since he died. Can we put our love on his box?"

Oh yes, honey. You absolutely can.

She colored a tiny slip of paper and signed her name on it and left it and the bobble head next to Isaac's casket. When we went to hug his Mommy, I explained to her what they were, and that Olivia wanted to leave them for Isaac because she loves him. And then I started to cry. Isaac's mommy was doing so very well, and I was a complete basket case. I just couldn't help but be moved by Olivia's sweet little 4-year-old expression of love.

Olivia had so very many questions tonight...more questions than I had answers. But she didn't seem to mind. She seemed to understand that it is all about love...loving the ones who are given to us, even when they are taken away. The depth of that just blows me away.