Sunday, May 31, 2009

Interstate "Options" mom always used to tease me for not going the easy route and just following the recipe. Here I go again....

We are considering INTERSTATE ADOPTION of a waiting child in the foster care system. Why? Well, because there are children waiting for families in the foster care system. (Kind of a no brainer)

You would think this would be pretty simple since it is all in the good ole US of A. Not the case. It is complicated. So much so that it makes me want to do two things:

1. Slap the next person who quotes me the statistics of how many kids are in the US foster care system;

2. Do something to change the fact that it is SOOOO complicated I am sure there are many people who look into it and then do not even bother.

Of course, we would be open to adopting from the lovely, communist state of IL - however - we are planning to stay in birth order and hope to adopt a child younger than our youngest who is 2 weeks shy of 5. I have been told on more than one occasion we will never find a child that young in the foster system to adopt...they are all placed with foster families and adopted by them OR they are returned to their families OR (I am guessing this is the most common) they bounce around the foster care system until they are much older than 4 or 5.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

High School, Kindergarten & Preschool GRADUATIONS!

Who would plan it this way? Not me.....GOD! Made it through our first high school graduation. Ali cried a little on the way in....admitting it was just a totally weird mix of opposing emotions. The teachers/faculty kept it short and sweet. (Thankfully!) And Ali's boyfriend, Mat, added such a fun, positive tone. I am excited for her.....she has her whole life ahead of her and she seems to be thoroughly enjoying it!
We gave Ali a "purse laptop" for graduation since she has a desktop in her room. She is loving it....and says it is where all her friends "live!" I guess she does not have to lose touch with them after all....thanks to Facebook. Pete gave her a check for $100 that she is supposed to put in the bank for 40 years! WOW....check out Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University for an explanation. I told Pete this is his simple way of providing for his kids and grandkids!

I gave her a necklace from Ten Thousand Villages she has been admiring for MONTHS. We joked about having expensive taste - BUT - it went down by 50%! I think she was surprised by it and she has worn it since I gave it to her.

I will post pictures of the Kindergarten and Preschool graduates soon. Brogan told another lil kid the other day that, "Yea, I'm going to Kindergarten....but I have to do that 'graduate thing' to get outta preschool first." He is SUCH a nut.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The People Who Influence Your Children

I love this photo because it reminds me of when Ali was only 6 and we moved into the house on the lake...right next door to Rob and Sherri.

Or - should I say: "Rob-yn and the Sherri!?" (To quote Tatum!)

I can vividly remember walking back to the house in the dark on the first night we stayed there, and having Rob & Sherri stop us on the sidewalk to excitedly ask if we were the family moving in next door.

We spent almost 7 glorious years in that wonderful house right on the being on vacation 3/4 of the year...with the best neighbors in the whole wide world.

They will never know how precious it was to have them watch our kids grow up, to have them show our kids unconditional love and support us as bohemian parents!

Thanks, Rob & Sherri....we are so proud of the person our daughter has become and YOU were a part of that!


I think this photo is FUN because it is our first born daughters together. During all those years, I never pictured THIS! Absolutely precious.....and definitely worth waiting for.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Pictures of What I Got on Mother's Day

I have had one of these PRECIOUS stepping stones from each of our oldest three children for awhile I really wanted to get one from each of the youngest two kids.

The most precious part is that each of them chose what they wanted to stick ("forever!") in the cement as a gift to me. Well, they chose things THEY loved! Little Pet Shop animals, Polly Pockets, Hot Wheels and Cave Men.
I DO feel special!
P.S. I got a FUN noise-maker from Ten Thousand Villages from my middle child and the older two spoiled me with a $25 gift card from that favorite store of mine!

My Wonderful Friend Shopped for Me!

We now have over 40 gorgeous Ethiopian scarves in our possession...thanks to a wonderful friend who purchased them for us on her last trip to Addis Ababa. I am restraining myself and keeping only my very favorite ONE. We are hoping to sell the rest to raise funds for our adoption.We will be asking for a $20 donation for MOST of them...and hoping for a $25 donation for about a 1/2 dozen scarves that are of a little higher quality.
I saw some comparable scarves at Ten Thousand Villages today and they ranged in price from $38 all the way up to $125! I am hoping people will see their purchase as worthwhile and worthy!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

the BEST mother's day present!

mother's day was the morning AFTER prom...and by 3:30 AM my oldest was sound asleep....SAFE & her bed! i love the way they plan prom now at our school....put 'em on the fancy bus to chicago, keep 'em on the boat in the harbor for dinner & dancing, bus 'em back and lock 'em in for after-prom. deliver them safely back to the school...which just happens to be right across the street from OUR neighborhood. WHEW! graduation is THIS sunday and i know she is experiencing all those weirdly opposing emotions...of being excited to be "DONE" - but sorta sad in an almost child-like way. i am so personally THRILLED to know she is staying here at home to work part-time and go to the community college. i think she will make a wonderful elementary teacher and she is wise to get her education in a cost-effective way. she is so much fun - so delightful - so JOY-full! - we are blessed by her presence. she has really and truly gone from a wonderfully sweet child to a precious "friend!" i love my adult daughter....

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

I like this prayer

give us a task larger than ourselves,
wisdom greater than our years,
friends to share our vision,
sufficient funds to realize it
length of days to accomplish it.