Thursday, July 30, 2009

Pot pie

Last evening I cooked supper for a crowd, okay so it was us and a few others, we make up most of any crowd:) I made potpie, I think it's a Pennsylvania thing, it's not a PIE like most think of, but actually flour dough cooked in ham broth. Ohhh yummy. One of the all time fave meals at home, so I made it for my bro.

Kat said " but I don't like your potpie, what will I eat??" Yeah, skinny girl, like I'd let her starve. We also had ham, of course, which she LOVES, glazed carrots, also a good thing for her to eat, and homemade Amish bread. (she won't eat) Oohhh, let me tell you, is there anything like the smell of fresh baked bread? I had to smell it in the car the WHOLE way home, while I dreamed of having butter on me to tear into that bread:) I even bribed son #1 to babysit ALL the children to go alone, to get the bread, his pay?? A loaf of the bread and homemade jelly:)
Momma knows the way to con a sitter.

I told wonderful family we needed a picture for a grant application, they groan and moan but we got one fairly quick although Kat and Chloe aren't looking too thrilled, like thanks girls, don't look too happy that you got US as your family-ahhh. Elderly lady sweetly agreed to take picture so we were all in it, although she couldn't really work the camera well so we only got 2 pics and Cam was looking down in the other one so we are stuck with the stone faced girls pic. Oh well.

The kiddos begged to go to McD's, they found out they have those little stuffed animals right now and just HAD to go. I told them it was up to Baba, thinking he told them "no" pretty easily to wanting a kitten at the Sunday picnic, he could handle this one, but we realized we had NEVER once taken Chloe to McD's since coming home with her- hey, we are into saving, saving saving. We have a big necessary trip to China to go on! But we did take them so they aren't neglected children.
It ended up we had to trade the Panda Cam got to Chloe, the bear Chloe got to Kat and the Skunk Kat got for a Penguin for Cam- did you follow that- yeah, another great mother skill, when young teen workers with no sense give family with 3 younger kids all different stuffed animals. What were they thinking?? We even ate in- so they witnessed the madness of the "trading till all is happy" scene. I think they were even laughing at us-- rotten teenagers.

Someday they will have kids and then they will get their paybacks--------- so the laugh is on them. I wish them lots and lots of little Hap*y Meal eaters. Ha ha. HA

Sunday, July 26, 2009

A day of FUN

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We decided to go to a local park with Uncle Roy and family for a bit of summer fun------

We started out a the water part together- small pool of fun for the little ones, huge slides for the big kids and we stayed there till the kids were turning purple and were frozen, shivering masses.

Then we split up, Baba took the older ones, bro, Aunt Junko and I took the little ones to the smaller rides. Everyone got to have fun and we even left 2 hours before Baba and the older kiddos as they were still going strong.

The older ones enjoyed Go Kart racing (Chloe was a bit scared- amazing since usually she is Miss Fearless!) They rode rides till Chloe said "I no want play no more" on the huge swinging boat:) Baba said she was looking a little green, NOT a good color for her. And she suffered through Cam's wish to mini golf.

All in all, they had a blast, not even 2 short rain showers could dampen our fun, and we have wonderful memories of our summer outing for 2009 Uncle Roy and Family's trip:)


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

WINNERS

And the winners are.................................................
April F. of Pennsylvania and Debra C. of Pennsylvania!

Drawn by Miss Chloe, congrats to the winners and thanks to everyone for your support:)

Last Chance

Drawing is tonight at 8 pm EST. Get in before then............................. Winners TBA>>>

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

It this cute or what?


A super big thank YOU to Elizabeth, who made this picture for Chloe for the big sibling birthday tomorrow.

All three together as they were meant to be. So sweet, our only photo of the three of them together............Chloe got the biggest kick out of it, she loves it!


1 more sleep till the raffle drawing, just 1!!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

"Sleeps"

This little cutie, Miss Kat, measures all events in "sleeps," to understand how many days till something is coming. She asked if her birthday (in October) is 70 sleeps. Not sure about that, I'm not counting out that far. If I would then each day would be a count down I would forget and have to recount for her---- ahhhh. Just another way to drive mother nuts.

Anyway, it's just 1 sleep till Uncle Roy comes..... ohhhh. The kids are so excited, even Chloe said "1 sleep till Uncle Roy, he your brother?" Yep, my favorite. Coming all the way from Japan with his family. The dog is even bathed and groomed today, by me, so we are ready!

We have just 2 sleeps to the BIG Day, Chloe, Chance and Chase's birthdays and the RAFFLE ends. I want everyone to win, I know, I know-----so do you!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

It's Saturday

Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: Sassy Kat
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Yep, it's Saturday and Baba is home. The kiddos call it "Cartoon Saturday" something they picked up from the foster boys:) Mom calls it "sleep in day!" Ha ha.

Summer is here and we are off to enjoy the day. Pics of Kitty, in her jammies, just as sassy and sweet as can be. The girl is a kissy, loving little bug, she is forever hugging us and telling us how much she loves us.

Our goal this weekend? Sneak past Miss Know-it-all-Chloe to get her a b-day present she wants, all part of good parenting 101:)

Don't forget to enter the raffle, it's over in just 4 days!!! Odds are super to win... so get in the fun and help the boys come home!



Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Funny girls

The "girls" have been quite entertaining this week so far. Yesterday when Kat sat on Chloe's leg and was hurting her she said " Kat, get off my chicken". We all looked at her and said " get off my chicken? Do you mean leg?" And we LAUGHED like a bunch of nuts. It was just too funny.

It's just such a joy to hear girly giggles, I think God saved the girly giggles for me when I was older and would take time to enjoy them:) Mal was such a serious and quiet tomboy, she really fit in with all the boys we had when hubby and I blended our family. Now she is still serious, but has also grown into a lovely young woman.

Writing of growing- Donobin turned 15 yesterday, nice to see it did not change him in his innocence too much. He played with the B*rbie cash register with all the younger kids, taking orders, handing out "cash." He got a Sponge B*b cake, which he loved and we all sang to him.

Lots of people are wishing for updates in the whole adoption process, us included! Here's the thing, nothing with adoption happens FAST, other than us falling in love. With such a recent adoption of Chance's sister, most everyone thinks we can reuse her paperwork and go for him right away. Us included, we thought some paperwork could be reused. Here's the reality. NOT ONE single paper can be reused. NOT one single FEE is less, except the agency's reduced fees for a returning family. We will be going for fingerprints for the THIRD time. Paid the fee for that all over again- as if our prints have changed- NOT. It's all part of the adoption process. No choice, we can think it's as dumb as can be, but to bring home child, you do the "process".

I personally have an opinion on the whole thing, not printable. ( Let's not forget I am a red head) What is printable is that if you go through this whole process then you surely WANT this child to come home BAD, you are not a quitter. You have stamina, staying power, the grit, whatever you call it.

You will be able to recall when they are driving you INSANE, how badly you wanted this child, thus giving you renewed patience with said child:) Also if the whole "process" drives you insane you don't qualify for adoption ( from China) anymore, so I guess if you make it through you are considered "up to snuff".

So here's where we are, I called immigration this week as I needed to find out why we have no fingerprint appointment yet. I figured it was due to my goof of not sending the check WITH the application and I was right. They originally said there was an appointment for the 23rd, I thought, WOW, that's next week! Well, I soon got a return call saying they had goofed-(guess they owed me one) and that was LAST year's appointment for Chloe:(

Then they tell us we are the very first "returning family" to do the new immigration process for the second time. Oh yeah. Not really feeling honored here, just wading unknown waters which I personally HATE. Talk about outside your comfort zone. I forget what a comfort zone IS.

Anyway, they "put aside" our file when fee was not with application. Then when fee came, there was no trouble cashing check, placing check with file, but no one bothered to then log in the file to be processes, thus no fingerprint appt had been made, nor was our application going anywhere. AHH.

So now that I have goofed, they have goofed and we are self proclaimed goof balls, let's hope the goofing around is done, at least adoption wise and we can MOVE on.

We are off for a swim day at Cafe's (Kathy's) and are enjoying the fantastic summer weather here.


Thursday, July 9, 2009

Pride

Last night I had to tell hubby I was "PROUD of him." Just had to. "Cause he did something HUGE. We were tight on funds with Chloe's adoption, but feeling she was totally worth it, hubby offered to sell a BIG thing to him. His NASC*R collection. He asked around, but couldn't get anyone who was interested. We ended up traveling much later than we anticipated due to the hold up with the Hague Rules of MISERY for adoptive parents. BUT this allowed us to have our income tax return to use to have the fees to go get our girl. So the timing was right.

We are doing all we can to come up with the funds for the boys' to come home, even as unexpected as this journey was to us. So we were happy when hubby gathered all the stuff up and someone called right away and wanted it. The guy came last night and even though he offered us less than we had hoped, hubby did it. He sold it. For our boys to come home, he gave this up. I know it was hard for him, he's such a wonderful hubby and dad.

With this journey we are REALLY tight on funds. There just isn't any extra. It's HARD, real hard, to hear your kid say "we can't 'cause we need the $$ to get our brothers." They have offered to give up allowance. They have held lemon"aide" stands, they are the best group of kids and we are so proud of them.
They have given up so much, at times we worry they have given up too much to allow us to adopt for this 3rd time. They did super with Kat's adoption, then when things got pretty tight for Chloe, they again, rallied and were great. But truthfully, there is mumbling and grumbling, of no summer vacation trip, not even a family pool pass this year. Oh, the guilt.

But it all comes down to them loving Chloe, and they do! They all do. And they understand her love of her brothers and want to have them here with her. They too feel it's not right to leave them behind. So we hope we are raising children that all of us may not have been to Disn*y, or the ocean yet, BUT they get the importance of F-A-M-I-L-Y. We think they will be loving and giving children and later as adults, not willing to look at another person's need and walk on by.

I filled out grant applications this week. Any and all I could find. We need them. To ask is hard, but to get the boys we will NEED help. The economy is so bad right now, it's terrible for everyone, it's hard to ask for help. We understand this. The raffle is in less than 2 weeks and it's not going so well. Chances to win are SUPER, ticket sales in our rural area are not good. People just don't have it to spend.

We just keep plugging away, we know for certain we are doing the right thing, God showed us the boys, then overcame the fees we needed to begin the adoption process, we know He will not leave us hanging, unable to afford to go get the boys.

I think of the day we will reunite these precious children, and introduce them to their new siblings as well, and we know for certain this will be worth it all. Of God's plan for their lives, we have no doubts. Won't that day be priceless? We think so.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Freedom

What a nice weekend we had. Friday night we had fireworks. I got some amazing pics of them with the American flag below the fireworks and we were able to watch the show from nearby. Cool.
Chloe wanted to know why I "no buy these in China, bring here"-hummm "momma go to jail" was my answer. She got it. She didn't like that answer but she got it. She was also quite proud to say " I Chinese American." Yes, our girl, you are:)
Saturday we were all playing in the yard, Kat was sweeping up the yard with the broom.then pretending to fly away on it. she thought she was really funny- see devilish face in picture, I caught it on film, then she nearly knocked out me, then Baba and we weren't so amused at her little antics and nonsense.

Speaking of nonsense, we watched some TV, I saw a movie, I know, big deal, but I so rarely watch TV that it was something. I LOVED the movie "The Notebo*k- wow, was that sad. Too bad I couldn't get past that the older "Noah" had brown eyes and the younger one blue, same for the girl, Alli. Why did this matter to me?? I don't know.

The other shows I saw in all their glory, Clean H*use, Messiest House in the Country 1, 2 and 3. WOW. Is all I can say. Do people REALLY live like that?? Can't even see the floor? I think what bothered me the most was that all 3 families were grown people, able bodied people, with excuses like you wouldn't believe. I mean people want to have a baby, yet they have 15 INCHES of cat poo in a closet and the cat died 3 years prior?????? That's just beyond gross. Can you imagine them with a baby? WHOA! And you can't even pick up a garbage bag and throw away rotting food?

I can't imagine living like that- I have a TON of kids and you may find a messy closet, a messy drawer, but I thank God I have the ability to clean my house and keep the kids stuff in order enough that I am not ashamed to have anyone over, pretty much any time, what a sad thing for those folks and the worse thing of it was they didn't even seem all that grateful to have been given complete home makeovers. I felt sad, really sad for these people. Maybe Kat can ride the broom on over and help them out, or knock them out- who knows??

I guess it seemed so bad to me since we are hoping to add a bedroom in the attic for the "China boys" and we are not sure how we will afford to do it. We NEED the room, we do not just WANT it. I want to redo my kitchen and bathroom, we NEED a bedroom for them. So we are praying about it and hoping we will be able to manage somehow to make it before they come home. Our grown son is willing to do the actual work, which is a HUGE help. Chloe keeps asking where we are putting the brothers, and why we have not started on building the room. I can't explain to her except to say- "brothers no here now". She gets that.

We heard this weekend from a family in China now, that the boxes we were able to send with them as they adopted their girl from Chloe's orphanage, they delivered for us for the boys :) Bigger than we could afford to send by mail for the boys' birthdays. Thanks again Ron & Beth, we are so thankful you were willing and able to do this for our boys. And congratulations on your girl, she is adorable.

As Chloe, Chance and Chase all have the SAME birthday July 22, I imagine it will be hard for Chloe, as this year will be the first she has spent without the brothers. Hopefully my brother and family coming in from Japan for their yearly family visit will take the edge off the birthday issue. Yep, you read right, my fave bro is coming !!! It's been 5 years and 2 girls since I got to go to Japan and fell in LOVE (sorry Baba) with Asian culture and food and everything. It was a HUGE factor in us looking at Asian adoption when we were led to adopting. I hope to be blessed to go back to visit, not adopting, just visiting again someday:)

Freedom. I used my freedom of speech to write my post. I am so proud to be free to do that, we really appreciate all the men and women who fight to keep this the land of the free.
One proud to be an American FAMILY.