Thursday, September 29, 2011

Need Help

You all KNOW how much I love my kids. You KNOW there isn't much of anything I wouldn't do for them.

You also know that some of them didn't come to us as cute lil' buggers, but as bigger buggers. And we love them deeply.

It's just at times we run into things that are difficult and I am stumped as to the best way to handle it. So I come to here for help, 'cause you all- my bloggy friends are THE BEST.

You never fail to help. It's one of very best things about blogging. Sharing these kiddos and their blessings with you.

The dilemma- the twins have picture time coming up and this is their last year in Middle School. So as they take the pics for the year and are putting together the year book, they are asking for- you guessed it-- baby pictures.

Something we do not have. Not a one.

So I told the kids I would "take care of it" and Chloe looked at me like I had totally lost my mind (no wonder, huh?)

And as I rack my brain for a way to help them- they want to fit in and be like everyone else these are the (crazy) ideas I think of--

I've heard of age regression pictures, Problem-I doubt we could afford them.

Send in 2 pictures of Kat as a baby- at least it's still someone in the family? Problem- they really don't look that much alike.

Pick out pics of kids from Henan and send them in. Problem- is that even legal? I don't really feel right doing that.

Ask any readers with Henan kids to compare any baby pics they have of their precious gems and if they are similar to Chloe or Chance to allow us to use them-

Problem- not sure anyone would want to do that?

I want to give the kids what they can't have. I know, I l know, I can't fix everything. But I want them to have a picture that if they chose, they do NOT have to tell anyone it isn't really THEM. And I will let it up to them, who they tell.

So they can be like everyone else. They had a beginning. I just don't have record of it:(

Any one else have any other suggestions? I'm open to them, let 'em rip.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Lunch with my eldest

My oldest "Son"shine. As I call him.

On break from the semester, he went with me to get Chloe's new laminate floor (another lesson- don't try to reuse laminate, sigh)

And closet lights. Must be covered lights. Per code. Did you all know that? Now you do.

So off we went. Got the flooring, picked out some books son could buy me for my up and coming birthday ( the only way I get a gift from him- if I pick it and it's usually books:)

Lunch was sushi. A favorite of both of ours. Although I had 2 bowls of wonton soup because my throat is horribly sore, thanks to the not-so-lovely strep throat I got from somewhere.

We enjoyed a HUGE laugh when I got to the check out at the home store and didn't I stick my foot right into my mouth. I saw a young man just waiting for a "customer" and I said---- "Look, a man just waiting to check me out."

OIY. I realized how that sounded and tried to say "Uhh, I'm married, happily married, with 12 kids and I mean you are waiting to check out my items?"

Double OIY. What could have been terribly embarrassing just became funny and funnier. Such is what happens when I take any of my kids anywhere. We act like nuts.

Derrik, aka sonshine, felt terrible I had to get flooring and lights for the house, since I wasn't feeling well, so not only did he treat me to lunch, he had me stop and he got me ice cream for later today. To sooth my throat. Such a sweetie.

Anyway, we were asked by a dear friend to send out postcards to her grandson in South Dakota, for his class to look up where post cards come in from and see the differences in where people live/ weather, etc. So we included where the kiddos are from as well, sent one from the teens, and one from Kat.

So if Jory's class comes checkin' out this lil' ol' blog- then "HI!!!! Jory and friends." Or Ni Hao in Chinese which sounds like "knee how?" We LOVE education and fun ways to learn. I hope we can stay in touch and see how winter goes here and compare it to there.

We are off to clean the attic- hey now-- the kids asked what they could "do" as soon as they got off the bus. I was ready and prepared for them today:)

Monday, September 26, 2011

It's all about teeth

Off to the dentist we went today. A new one because, quite frankly the last one made me mad. Offended me.

How? You say? Well---- when they charged me $90 EXTRA to clean the plaque off of Chase's teeth when I honestly told them that he had never seen a dentist before and came from an orphanage. A regular cleaning fee I would have taken, but $90 MORE tacked on? Like if anyone had light/no plaque do you think they give out a discount? I don't think so.

And that was it for me, cause they KNEW we do not have dental insurance.

Now, I do not ask for favors for my children, they are our responsibility, we accept that. But to be charged extra due to their past circumstances that could not be helped, I'm not going to sit back and take that either.

So the new dentist was really nice. They were so interested in the kids, they blocked off 3 hrs for me to bring all 5 at once. OIY. What was I thinking? I had to make a mad run to pick up 5 kids at 4 different schools! Then boogie to get to the dentist on time.

No one came out unscathed:( Chloe still has a issue with a front tooth that did not come out well with the extensive treatment the first dentist tried. Chance has 2 cavities as do Camden and Chase. Kat has 2 tiny ones but they are in teeth getting ready to fall out. So they all get to go back, but in doubles, not all 5.

I think the dentist needs time to replenish the prize basket, the kids were so tickled with the prize basket they got about 5 things EACH. I tried to tell them to get out of the basket, take one, etc. But the dentist told me to let them go, let them have as much as they wanted. He shook my hand and said they were such nice kids, he said we are "doing a great job with them." I told him we were blessed with these children, them being here was a miracle.

Usually I dread any new places where we have to give a health history for the kids, I have to be honest and tell them I don't know about a lot of things. But I learned more about my kids today, that (no surprise) Chase had to go to the hospital for fighting- oh, that temper of his. That was when we were going over if anyone had been in the hospital before they came home.

I was surprised how well the kids handled that long of a time in a tiny waiting room and with no Internet (I know, how dare they) but other than declaring to all they were going to starve to death till they all got done and back home, they were well behaved. Not their usual selves at all:)

And it seems that Camden would like to be a future dentist, because he convinced Kat to let him pull her very loose other front tooth. So now the tooth fairy is expected to visit tonight and Kat has now gotten twice as hard to understand.

At least for today the kids all have very clean teeth. No extra charges involved:)
Quite thankful for that.

Saturday, September 24, 2011


Well, we are hearing rumors that our house will be done enough for us to move in soon. The floors are going down, trim is supposed to be done next week, as is the final electrical stuff and plumbing stuff. The stove, fridge and microwave came yesterday.

I am learning so much with this remodel.


I NEVER want to remodel/build again. MY "vision" is officially shut down.

I would NEVER make it as a house flipper, I would hurt someone and end up in jail.

Budgets mean NOTHING to contractors. I think their motto is "budgets are meant to be broken, let's party."

Expect the worse with everything. 'Cause that's likely what you will get. No one comes on time, does what they are supposed to, works a full day, or tells the truth about when they will be done.

It must be in the code book of building and the #1 rule in builder's school- always say "Oh, soon", or "Maybe", or my all-time-favorite "We'll SEE." We sure do. We SEE nothing happen for weeks on end.

Miss Kitty can pull off pretty stinkin' cute no matter where she lives:) See pictures above- and yes, we are bias. Of course we are. Sweetness inside and out.

So other than the fun of our remodel/build, our week has been fairly quiet.

I'm almost scared to write that. No calls from the school, no one missed the bus, no one created drama, besides Camden and Chance.

Camden's drama? He is going to Outdoor School next Tuesday- Friday and last night he HAD to pack. Had to. And when I told him it might help if he cleaned up his pile of crap-mainly clothes he can't seem to walk a whole 50 feet to the laundry, he came out with a huge armload of clothes and dumped them in a laundry basket.

When he came to me 4 hours later and wanted to know if those clothes were done yet? Well... let's just say I was not amused, sooo not amused. Didn't have ONE chuckle for him:( I hadn't even STARTED them. It was pouring down rain so no chance of hanging anything out, matter of fact there's ended up being a few things on the clothes line for 2 days due to it raining every day.

Who does that child think I am? Laundry Queen?

The kids had off school yesterday just for fun (teacher inservice day already)and they parked themselves on the new living room floor like a bunch of puppies, they got the outdoor chair cushions and sacked out watching movies all day. Nothin' else to do in the rain. They watched the floor guy for a while, I hope they didn't annoy him, 'cause at 2 pm I realized he was GONE. Done for the day I guess?

I went for groceries, a dreaded chore and took Chance after dad got home. Chance said "First time you pick me." Not true, but he was so happy I "picked him" to go along. Funny how something so simple makes him so happy. We had lost electric for some reason (remind me to post about the joys of living in the country) anyway and were bored, so we took off.

We had gone to the store last week, when Camden needed some track type pants, and Chance had his drama fit. Giving me dirty looks all through the store, pouting, staying back from us like he didn't belong to me. I couldn't figure out his issue, I thought he was jealous Camden was getting a pair of pants. We still see that quite a bit. Even though the 3 teens have quite a bit of nice, new clothing.

So he got sent to the kid room when we got home. And I told him I buy a TON of clothes for all of them and that when Chase outgrows things, he passes them down if they are still nice, and we expected him to do the same. Because his issue was that Camden was wearing a pair of jeans of HIS. That didn't FIT him anymore.

I sometimes do forget these kids had NOTHING of theirs. They can and do have a hard time letting go of things, even clothes that no longer fit. Because they would wear things that no longer fit just to HAVE clothes in the orphanage.

It was so sweet though, when Chance came to me later and said "Mom, can you forgive me? I think about it, and you right. I give too small things to Camden, 'cause you buy me more."

I told him I didn't want him to ever be without if I could help it and that I wanted him to understand he didn't HAVE to hang on to things that no longer fit. It wasn't about me wanting Camden to have all his stuff. ( a common thought for them- that Camden is "favored") And he got it. He told me he understood.

Then I explained to him that he hurt Camden's feelings, that he would feel bad if Chase yelled at him in a store about wearing his clothes, so he apologized to Camden. Learning.

Although he might have gone overboard, I heard him say to Chloe, he "didn't think he looked good enough in his shoes anymore, he needed new ones." Uhh, NO. I told him we did not buy new shoes because we needed to LOOK good when the ones just bought a month ago were perfectly fine.

OIY. What a fine line we walk. Trying not to spoil but also provide. Trying to help them share, but also not take away comforts for them. Always learning and sharing their lives. Watching them grow. The are priceless.

Unlike home remodeling, which is NOT priceless. So I'm off to see if any money to extend the budget is growing on the trees at the house, what are the odds of that?? Ha ha!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Paintin' done

Thanking God for the strong body He gave me to get all the painting done. WHOOO HOOO, it's completed. Every room has primer, ceilings painted white, and 2 coats of color.

I'm a girl who likes color, Chloe calls it "flavor." Gotta have color (flavor). We have a lovely variety, our main areas, hallways, entry and living room are done in a sandstone textured paint with glitter that you only see sparkle when the sun hits it. Tiny gold twinkling. It's soooo pretty, but was sooooo messy to paint. It has real sand in it and splattered everywhere on me, even in my eyes:(

Then the kitchen/ dining room combo is sage green. Bathroom is pale blue. Chloe's room is a load of fun- pink on 2 walls, 2 white on 2 walls, then circles of all different sizes go around the middle of the room like a wave. They are in hot pink, white, pink and black, and the black ones are done in chalkboard paint:)

Kat's room is lavender and mint green. So girly. Master bedroom is hunter green. The boys' room are pale blue and then Camden and Chance picked out green and yellow for their room. Downstairs bathroom is white and the family room is now amber yellow. Like a gold color. It started out white, I didn't like that, I did antique white/tan and dad didn't like that, so then it went to gold and I have no desire to repaint it ever again.

I really have no desire to repaint ANY of those rooms for a good long time. I finished up yesterday- yeah, I know it was Sunday and you aren't supposed to be working. BUT the floor guy started today, bright and early and I had to get it done.

The kids did a ton of work Sat. I took I-pods hostage and demanded some help. I found out Chloe and Chase are great at painting, they are careful and do a good job. Chance and Camden do a fast job, not so neat though. I never would have gotten done if they hadn't helped me, and they are helped dad too working on staining the trim, all 150 pieces of it.

It's going to be amazing when we can stand in a room and say- "See that trim, you did that, or, I painted those walls," etc. Pride. In our home. The kids are really starting to get it when it comes to this being "our home" and what we put into it matters.

Not that we are encouraging materialism, no way, but this house is a blessing God has given us and we want the kids to see what all goes in it to learn some care for their surroundings. We all have a "painting outfit" except Princess Kat, of course, but I have 2 so I make up for her lack of painting hours. And my 2 outfits are sorry looking clothes now.

We do have to wonder if we are experiencing more issues than most? We ordered 6 cabinets to fix the upper cabinets that are not correctly put in and to add to the cabinet space. WELL---- when the lower cabinet was to go in this morning before the floor was started we learned we had 6 UPPER cupboards, not one lower cabinet to be found:(

Also the cement porch has cracked in one place, and the crack is growing bigger daily. The kids put paint rollers still wet with paint on the deck, the already stained deck:(

It seems we daily come upon an issue, or two which I wonder if it's to teach us patience or what? IS this just how it is when you remodel/build? If so, why does anyone ever do this? It's such a hassle. It's frustrating to say the least.

Add in the not so much fun of an issue of our e-mail being invaded by some goofball that was using our address in the wrong then called our Internet provider and got them to place a freeze on OUR account last week.

When I called today because hubby couldn't take calling one more time (called 3 times over the weekend with no success) I finally got a real person on the line at 48 minutes, 36 seconds. And I said to her ( it was a great effort but I said this very nicely) " I just want to tell you this first. I have been on hold for 48 minutes of my life. Please do not apologize either because the automated dude you have come on every 30 seconds to tell me you all were too busy for my call has now apologized to me 284 times."

She was SPEECHLESS. She paused and said "I hope I can help you?" And she did. Our account is unfrozen and goofball is being warned not to use it again. One small success in my world today- ha ha!

I did take a few moments off yesterday and caught a pic of Donovan for his year book. He looks so grown up. And since everyone asks, the red mark beside his lip is a birth mark, he's had it since birth. Donovan took a break from installing outlets, our house needing electrical work is his lifetime dream job:) He wanted to help and got his first "shock" and I don't mean that we didn't pay him. He got shocked by an outlet he thought was off.

I'm off now for bed, tomorrow the tile goes down. The kids are so excited, they can't hardly stand it. I must hear 50 times a day in the hours I see them- "when is my room gonna be done? Are we moving in soon. What will we do the first day we are in the house? Where will we put this, or that?"

Tomorrow I will be calling the cabinet dude bright and early. I'll try really hard to be nice. (mom)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


I know our house has been at the forefront of our minds and my blog posts. But nothing to say except painting- up, down, day after day, color after color- too boring. But it's such a blessing to be getting close to moving in.

SOoooo--- this post is all about the kids. Yep, you got it. The kids. I know you are missing hearing all about them (mom).

I'll update on adjustments of all the additions, not to slight Camden or Donovan. Because just as adoption is for life, adjustment is ongoing.

I'll start with the oldest newbie. Chase. He seems to have stopped growing/ gaining weight for the present time. He's about 5 '7 and 129 lbs. Healthy looking. He is having good success with the witch hazel someone commented and said to try for his "bubbles aka pimples." (THANKS!) Although even with less bubbles he is still looking at his face 100 times a day.

He seems happier. He is settling in. He still struggles with letting us parent him- even understanding what being a child of 16 means is difficult for him. He is so used to be "the man, the provider." It's hard when he has done that for so long to realize he can let that go now.

I would say he is still in "survival mode" in some ways, that is- he will take care of something himself before he asks it of us. But in many ways we see him trying to turn to us more, knowing we can be trusted. We realize his progress is going to be ongoing and we see improvement so we are encouraged by that.

He has lost that scared look, every time something goes wrong. The look of "Oh no, that's it. They will be done with me." He is still surprised that we will not "garbage him." As he says it. "Nope", I tell him, "We don't garbage any children, he is stuck with us forever." We hear that much less often, maybe once a month or so, just checking that it hasn't changed, I guess.

And it doesn't. He's here for good. In many ways he is seeing the good of being here, he is making friends, he is learning English, he is interested in a girl here. He is understanding and accepting he is important and we love him. Gaining self confidence. It shows. He can handle some teasing, some fun, he is lightening up and dropping some of the total seriousness his life has consisted of till now. Becoming a child.

He is closest to dad, because they are most alike. Quiet. Strong. He doesn't quite know what to do with a mom who isn't needy, who wants to take care of HIM. He is helpful, will do any job asked of him and some we don't ask.

He loves music. He tolerates the dog and cat barely, still doesn't get why we have them for PETS, in the house, animals, pets.

He's very protective of his things. He takes immaculate care of his clothing, shoes, bedding. Anything that is his.

He is a treasure. I can not even imagine him being left behind and am so thankful he was not. He is where he belongs. We see him relaxing and getting that more and more each day. I don't wish him to grow up too fast but can hardly wait to see where his life goes. He's a wonderful son.

Chloe. She is still in girl's 14 clothes, much to her dismay. I'm happy 'cause the clothes are cheaper but she doesn't like the selection. She is very "into" how she looks, a typical teen. Both her and Chance are about 5 ft 2 but she is around 98 lbs and he is over 100. Again, looking healthy and fit. Both are very active.

She is a diva, even though she won't admit it. She's sometimes prickly, but she is learning to be much more accepting that the world does not revolve around her:) She has the biggest heart. She is signed up and joyfully working and saving everything she can to go on a mission trip to Costa Rica in Feb 2012 with our church group.

She is so eager to go and HELP. People in need.

She is still the queen of questions. Asking stuff all the time. She actually told me and dad that she "knew what we did when we went to bed." We were thinking "HUH?" When she said "You lay down and go - ahhh- with a sigh of relief that I am finally asleep and quiet." Ha ha- we told her she was totally right. She can be exhausting.

But she reminds me so much of me, as a child. You see, I too, was a prickly girl, having lost my dad before I was even 10 years old and feeling like I was "different" because of it. I didn't let many people close to me, as they could hurt me. You keep people out, they don't hurt you.

So I understand where she comes from. And she must see the kindred souls that we are because she is leaning more and more on me. Wanting to be mothered when she really never had a mother and has struggled to understand what that means. But she's getting it. I'm here for her. I've got her back.

I'll pull her up if she falls, I'll correct her if she is going the wrong way, we love her. As is. She's a beautiful person, inside and out. She can be very funny, but also very insightful.

As we dined out (rarely can afford this) and the kids totally enjoyed a buffet supper, they got to talking about being rich. Chance wanted to be rich and own a buffet restaurant so he can eat any time he wants as much as he wants. And Chloe made this comment- "But rich people don't adopt a bunch of kids."

She was not being mean about people being rich, she was just understanding that they have money, but they don't have what we have- a bunch of adopted kids. Kids we didn't expect to have. But blessings, each and every one of them and we wouldn't trade them for all the money in the world. No way.

She understands the best how God provided in bringing her brothers home. How He is there for her. How He brought her to us, thus bringing the brothers as well. It seems she has gained the most from them being reunited and adopted to the same family- it gave her faith. Because we take NO credit, it was all GOD. She knows that.

Chloe is very fussy about her things, very neat and orderly. Dedicated to learning. She wants help with her homework and it has to be NOW, not later.

She's also getting what it means to have a dad. That he is there for her. He can "funny" (tease) her- she slaps him:) She has asked him to put her bed together as soon as her flooring is done. Not asking me to ask him. She likes to say she came from "my belly" as she sees us as the only parents she has ever had. Almost 13 years to get us. That makes me sad, but thankful she didn't have to NEVER get us.

On to Chance. He is still growing. No wonder with everything the boy eats. He can put away more food than I have ever seen in one sitting and I have teen/ adult sons. We've talked to him about not eating things he doesn't like just because it's there. We worry he still thinks he will not get fed every day 3 times a day plus snacks. He's taking the longest to settle down on the eating.

He's girl crazy, he wants to have a girlfriend badly. And I am sure there is no shortage of willing girls, I saw a whole group of them crowding around him at Open House:(

School is tough for him. He is getting more support this year because we are fairly certain he has some type of learning disability. He says he is "dumb or stupid" but I correct him by telling him he learns differently and we haven't figured out how to teach him. That he is in no way stupid nor are we upset with him- something he worries deeply about.

He has accepted the fastest and easiest of all 3 teens that we love him and are keeping him. No garbage questions out of him. He calls us mom and dad, not "mother/father." He accepts that we are his parents and he doesn't have to use the highest form of respect (Mother/Father) as other kids don't usually do that- besides Chloe and Chase:)

He is so social and outgoing, so rarely in a bad mood, it's hard not to like him. He's not the least bit shy like Chloe and Chase. He's also the messiest, fitting in with Camden quite well. Matter of fact, they are buddies now. They hang out together the most and really get along well.

Although Chance doesn't ask as many questions as Chloe, his mouth runs all the time. He is either talking to himself, singing, talking with someone all the time. He is only quiet when he is sleeping:) He always says to us "good morning mom, good morning dad." Even when it's evening:) He is polite and fun to be around, making him quite popular.

It helps too that he is just stinkin' cute, where Chase is more handsome and mature, Chance is just plain cute. That smile that is almost always on his face is hard to resist. He does seem to worry more about long term than the others, he questions how long he can live with us and we assure him for as long as he needs/wants to.

He is always telling me things that make me laugh, even if he isn't talking directly to me. I overheard him in the van coming home from church Sunday saying this- "Ohhh- there's a deer. I'd love to shoot it, but can't because mom doesn't like guns and killing animals so I can't kill deer. No shooting, mom says, it not nice. So no shooting deer, even though we could eat for long time. That mom, too bad."

Another treasure. Almost lost, sitting on a list, waiting for his family. We are so blessed to be the ones to share this child's life. So meant to be:)

Miss Kitty- well, "total princess", the kids were all complaining how she got "another new pair of shoes"- they don't realize her feet finally went up a size from toddler 10 and she needs new shoes. They think she is spoiled but they dote on her as well.

She is getting taller, almost 5 years home now and she is 42 lbs. Still tough to get weight on her, she eats more "Chinese like" than the other 3. She is not willing to try things they are. But she is healthy so we don't worry about it.

She adores her PoPo and Gong Gong (Chinese grandparents, formerly her foster parents) but refuses to hear much at all about a "Chinese birth mother." Doesn't care, for her- I am her mom. That's it. And Dad, well, dad is the love of her life. She adores him. He sits, she's right there wanting to sit with him.

She's very bright, doing well in school, but sensitive as can be. Yesterday the teacher kept them over by accident and Kat (along with 3 others) missed the bus. So they called me and when I got there she was stone silent. Standing there. Waiting for me to fall apart, I saw the storm coming and as soon as she got in the van she did. Cried. Upset. Scared.

Typical 2nd grader, which mom easily calmed down with saying "No big deal, it happens, I'm late sometimes too." Then I got to calm Chloe down when we got back too, even though I left her a note, she apparently got extremely worried and upset before coming in the house and READING the note. Because lil' sis wasn't on the bus. And she should have been.

Looking out for each other. Picking at each other. Laughing with each other. Sharing with each other. Keeping tabs on what each other gets. Worrying about school, girls, pimples, driving. Pretty normal teen stuff on a daily basis:)Thinking about what they want to do someday for jobs.

Dreaming of a future. Knowing they CAN. Because their future will be safe, secure with a family to back them and help them get where they want to go. It seems so small, what we "do" for them. But it's a freedom for them, freedom from the label of "orphan." Of the label of unwanted. Of the label of unworthy, unable to get work, unable to go "home" to family.

To them it's priceless, and for us they are a gift- a blessing from God- sharing the good and the bad, they are our children. Adding to us, not taking away. They bring joy, laughter, fun and bumps to the road of life here. Not a boring day in our world, that's for sure. And we can't imagine our lives any other way.

So there's an update on the adjustment of the kiddos- long overdue.

Now back to work- painting. Oh joy.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Awfully quiet

Hey- whatcha all up to? Been awful quiet here on the blog front. Our cable went out again for 5 days, no internet service or phone. The joys of living in the country:)

What have I been up to you ask? Or maybe ya didn't but I'm gonna tell you anyway.

I am painting. Normally I love to paint. Fairly cheap solution to make a big change in a room- bring on the paint. BUT--- having learned from the contractor that no money is in the budget for a painter- I wanted to scream. Because the dry wall is finished- done. Whooo- hooo you say.

Boo hoo I say. Because it means the WHOLE house has to be painted. All the ceilings are textured and they have to be painted with primer then painted white. Then the walls are most all new so they have to get a coat of primer first as well and then painted- 2 coats each. I have been working my tail off ( in fact my tail is GONE) for days, and have Chloe's, Kat and Phoebe's, master bedroom, bathroom and kitchen/dining room done.

I have huge living room, entry way, 2 boys bedrooms, family room and a bathroom to go. I wanted to see if I could get someone to help me, I mean it's really NOT hard- no trim yet, no outlets, no lights to work around. Just painting. But the dude that came and gave me an estimate for the 8 rooms I had left to do was nuts, I tell ya. Looney toons. He quoted me $2180?? For 8 rooms?

That's like $272 per room. Insane. We are in an area of high unemployment, and I'll be saving my pennies, thank you very much. Yup, paintin' it myself, thinking every time I finish a room- well, I saved $272 there. And $272 there. So there.

And it will get done. The floor guy comes on Mon the 19th. His work will take a week, then we can get the electrician in to put in our lights and outlets and such and the contractor to finish up the trim and WE MOVE IN.

It is fun seeing the colors go on. Sage green, lavender and green, pink, blue. The blue for the bathroom was a bright, mind boggling blue. Hubby said last night at first coat he "hated it." I thought it would dry lighter. Well- it did which just made it brighter. I looked at it yesterday morning and realized there was NO WAY I wanted to look at that bright of anything first thing each morning and I took off for Chase's room to swap out some paint. He had a nice pale blue picked out and that's what it ended up.

Hubby came home and marveled how that blue had lightened up so much:)
(Yes MOM, I eventually told him the truth)

What have the kids been up to? School:) Going to school. Every day. One day off early already 'cause of the rain and flooding. It rained so much I thought I missed the announcement to build an ark and was missing the boat? Ha ha. It was really bad though.

I got 7 phone calls and 3 e-mails in the first 2 days of school. (I must be on speed dial) Then the phone went out at the house. Blasted kids know mother's cell phone number and gave that out to the school with glee- so I couldn't hide anywhere from the calls.

Mostly schedule changes, getting everyone settled, trying to find out why Kat wasn't getting a drink at lunch since she won't drink any type of milk and wasn't being offered juice this year? Not allowed we are told, so now she takes her own each day.

Our ESL program improved - our 3 teens are only 3 of 6 total students our ESL teacher has to work with this year. She no longer is doing all the elementary students as well as middle and high schoolers, which totaled more than 20 kids last year. She did not have the time our children needed. So she is feeling much more available and able to sit in classes/ pull them from classes for instruction than previously.

I did kick a little fuss and Chloe asked if they would get in trouble for me asking too much of the school. I assured her she would not, they were used to me by now:) I told the school the papers/ handbook that the kids bring home at the beginning of the year for them to sign and me to sign needed to be in Chinese for the kids. That them signing that they agree to certain rules/ set assignments makes no sense when they can't read well enough to even know what they are signing.

Ya think they would have thought of this? Nope. So I told them to get the stuff translated so the kids can understand it and follow the rules they are sure of. The teens are almost paranoid about getting in trouble at school- even though it would not be the end of the world. I think that follows them from treatments received in school back in China if one did not meet expectations:(

Miss Kitty told me how she knows her teacher's name. You'll just love this. "Mrs. Cutting- da- ham." You can tell the girl loves meat. I laughed and laughed but put it all together and she's got Mrs. Cunningham:)

Chance made me laugh too, he told Donovan to share something with him. Donovan came back with "What do you ever share with me?" And Chance had that all figured out with "My MOM- I share my mom with you!" Hummm- not sure how that works since I really was Donovan's first- but Chance wasn't getting that. He's the funniest kid. Almost always smiling and in a good mood.

Chase is liking school better it seems this year. He's seems happier and I got one of the 7 calls to just tell me he was "fitting in well and looked sharp." Okay then. No more weird t-shirt sewn into a jacket shirts from the orphanage that don't fit him anymore. I think he has gotten taller and filled out some.

Camden's BIG day is today, He is 11 today. Ahh where is time going? My youngest living son, my mini male me, my redheaded baby boy is getting so big. He's loving school, getting so tall, he's a great brother and son. We are very proud of how he has not resented any of the adopted children, foster children, he is a big help to them and enjoys being a part of a big family.

He's such a treasure. A gift from God. We love him so much.

I took cupcakes and juice for Camden's birthday to school, 'cause he said I had to. Just had to. He didn't care if I said I needed to paint, he HAD to have cupcakes. So I went and got cupcakes, more paint, more stain and will head back to the painting chore.

Anyone living close and loves to paint, well just come on over- no invite needed. Wear old clothes and grab a brush. You won't be kicked out of my house:))

Thursday, September 1, 2011

There's a need

When I hear of a family in need I want to help, especially when it's for a child of God, coming home to a great family but those last funds needed are short. Because I have first hand witnessed the miracles God can do- just a look at my 2 sons here today because God called and His people said "Yes, oh yes. Let me be a part of this. And dollar by dollar we were blown away.

I am NOT asking for help for us to adopt Phoebe, I have shared that so far God has generously provided our funds needed to proceed. And we are NO less thankful for that.

But I come to my wonderful friends, fellow adoptive families, and most of all Christians in love with the orphans, those of you who hold them in your hearts, and don't hesitiate to give with loving hearts.

This child is 9. She is a special needs child, which means, she is super special to her family as her need is THEM. And they WILL give her a fabulous family. We know this family and they are great people.

I love to see any and ALL children get a family. I know, oh I know, so well, how deeply important it is. And I know these are God's precious children that He wants to see happy, loved, in homes with families that love them. It is not His Will that these children are orphans and unloved. I could tell you terrible stories of things my own children have endured being orphans in a society that didn't want them.

But this is about LOVE-- the love of a family for a girl, who needs to know she is wanted. She is loved. She has a Heavenly Father who adores her. And she will be getting that. And more. Just look at how happy our Chloe is and imagine if she had never gotten adopted?? Ohh. I can't imagine life without her! What a lost treasure she would have been, I shudder to even think of it, but thankfully she is not, nor are her brothers. They are loved. They are orphans NO LONGER.

SO PLEASE. I ASK. For every orphan hoping "Will they come for me today? My family, someone who wants ME, not a tiny baby, but ME, a bigger girl, with an issue or two? Could anyone really care to want me?"

Please give with your hearts. Give to help Kelia get home. Be a part of something so special that every time you think about it, doesn't matter if it's years from now, you'll get a warm, fuzzy feeling knowing YOU helped this one, to make it to a family. And God will see what you did. He will be thrilled.

And one by one, till there are NO MORE------ we all can do something to see 163 MILLION orphans, be one less, then another, and another and another and another------------

Could it get any better than that? Let's do it. Let's knock the mountain her parents see as the burden keeping them from getting her home to the ant hill God sees $$ roadblocks as. Let's blow this mountain people, I wanna watch it going.... going..... GONE.

I PROMISE I will post a MUCH worth it updated picture of our newest treasure, Miss Phoebe if the total amount needed comes in for Kelia. Just a little incentive for you all:))

I had to come back and edit, I forgot to even mention cool giveaway you will be entered in if you do give, I guess it's not the most important thing, of course, but it's a neat chance to get something if you win.

Do you hear God calling you- For go that take out coffee today- give that $5 to honor God's wishes! He tells us to "love and care for the orphans." Now get on over there and let's LOVE, let's CARE, let's GIVE!!

Blow the mountain, blow my socks off, more importantly --make God laugh with JOY at how many people respond to His call. He knows your heart, He gives the opportunity, the means, now it's your time/turn to do IT.