Saturday, March 15, 2008

Still getting use from this

This table and chair and cabinet have been around a long, long time! They used to be my grandma's - my mom said it was probably bought somewhere between 1906-1910. So my grandma played with it, then of course my mom played with it. I wonder if her three sisters played with it too? My grandpa put a new piece of wood on the tabletop sometime. I played with it, I'm sure Melanie played with it. That's me in the bottom picture at two years old. Now Kamryn is playing with it!

Kevin, Matt and I all took turns sanding the cabinet. It had layers and layers of paint on it and looked a little beat up. We then repainted the cabinet white to match Kamryn's dresser, put new plexi-glass in the doors and bought new knobs. I still would like to maybe stencil polka-dots or something on the table and maybe put Kamryn's initial on the chair. I'll probably wait until we decorate her room to see what colors actually get painted on the walls. Hopefully this spring we will do her room.

She loves playing with it! It's perfect for her! Thanks Mel for giving us the cabinet. (I got the table and had repainted it before Kamryn home, Melanie got the cabinet but Lauren and Gavin are not really into playing with it) So the cabinet is the new addition, and I really appreciate my sister sharing it with us so that Kamryn can enjoy it. It is a nice addition to her play kitchen.

Friday, March 14, 2008

We LOVE the movie Tarzan

and here's why:

Besides being a fun movie to watch with a muscular man, gorillas (for the kids) and great music, it is truly an adoption story. Tarzan is an orphan baby who is rescued by a gorilla named Kala. He grows up in the wild with Kala being his mom and the rest of his gorilla family. One day Jane Porter, who is on an expedition with her dad and a man named Clayton, finds herself in need of help from some animals, and Tarzan saves her. He then realizes that he is human. He is forced to make a decision as to which "group" he belongs to.

I have several favorite scenes. One is the scene when Tarzan as a boy feels different and runs off to the water. He looks in the pond, sees his reflection and then starts putting mud all over him. He realizes that he looks more like a gorilla covered in mud. His mom finds him and he asks why he is different. She tells him that they both have two eyes, a nose, two ears, two hands; they put their hands up to each other and Tarzan notices they are different. She tells him to close his eyes and asks what he instead feels. He replies his heart. He listens to her heart and she says their hearts are exactly the same. I get tears in my eyes every time I see it.

Another favorite part is when Tarzan gets off the boat and returns to save his family from Clayton and his men. Clayton is about to shoot Kerchak (Tarzan's dad) when Tarzan swings through the trees to save him. Kerchak says to Tarzan, "You came back." Tarzan replies, "I came home." He then realizes that that is where he truly belongs.


Tarzan Soundtrack - You'll be in my heart by Phil Collins

My 4th Grader is Wearing . . .

GLASSES! Yikes! I was in 4th grade when I first needed glasses. I remember it well. I hated my classes, or rather hated how I looked in my glasses. Thankfully Brendan has a more positive outlook on his situation and is actually excited to be wearing glasses. Because I was in the room with him during his eye exam, I know that he really needs them. At least I think he wasn't lying when he missed some of the letters on his eye test. Only Aunt Melanie would do that:)when she was in the 4th grade. I tried finding a picture of myself in my glasses when I was Brendan's age, and I could only find one! I tried to scan it into my computer, but I was far away in the photo, and it didn't really work well enough to post. But the point is, I could only find ONE photo. I found one of Melanie in her glasses and it is such a funny picture. Mel, can I post it? Anyway, I'm proud of Brendan that he has more self confidence than I did at that age, and I'm so happy that he can see better! Doesn't he look cute?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


"Waaaa, mmmm, baaaa, awwww . . . mommy I'm speaking whale!"

That's what Kamryn told me this morning as we were leaving the house. She is too funny. I really wish she would speak more English. (quick speech update: Kami is still going once a week to our district preschool for speech only. She goes for one hour and is doing great. She really is making progress. She loves the new therapist and never looks back at me when she heads to the classroom with Miss Julie)

Geez, between using a fork like Ariel and now speaking whale like Dory in Finding Nemo, WHEN WILL IT BE SPRING?!!!! REALLY? We need to get outside and away from the TV.

Actually, we haven't seen Nemo in a long time. We really haven't had lots of time these last few weeks at all to watch anything. It seems like we are always running somewhere these days. Baseball started. Need I say more? Tonight I drove Matt to practice, dropped him off, got back in the car to take Brendan to practice. Dropped him off. Then it was time to get back in the car and pick up Matt. Then back to pick up Brendan! Golly, I'm really loving my new van now since I am going to be living in it!

Anyway, Kamryn can continue to speak whale, while I continue to wail "Spring where are you?"

Friday, March 07, 2008

Brotherly Love

Way back in January, Matthew and Kamryn were shopping with me at Joanne Fabrics on a Sunday afternoon. Matt must have had cabin fever, because he never goes shopping with me! Anyway, Matthew noticed this fabric that he knew Brendan would love for his pirate room. I told him we could get it and he could make a pillow for Brendan for his birthday just like the pillow Matt made at school during his FACS class. Matt thought it was a great idea! Matt can sew, I can't. So I also bought this $20 stitching machine that I thought would be good enough for the pillow, but after threading it, Matt couldn't get it to work. So one night (way after Bren's bday sometime in Feb) the kids and I went to Grandma's house so Matt could borrow her real sewing machine. Grandma and Matt locked themselves in her craft room and when they came out, Matt presented Brendan with his pillow. A belated birthday gift from Matt, but one that was worth the wait. Brendan got this huge grin on his face, and we could tell he really loves it. By then Matt was grinning with pride too. Brendan thanked his brother, and I told them they could hug because I could tell they wanted to do something . . . well they liked the idea of a hand shake instead. I so wish I had it on film, but I don't, but I'll always remember that brotherly love in that moment. Brendan loves the pillow and sleeps with it every night. I am so proud of my boys!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Can you tell I'm so excited too?

My friend Delilah and her husband finally got their referral from China! Oh, what an exciting time for them and their son Mark. They have been waiting for 2-1/2 years for this moment. Monday they finally laid eyes on the little girl meant to be in their family.

I met Delilah while we lived in Carmel. She lives in the same subdivision we did, and Mark and Matt are in the same grade. While we were waiting for Kamryn, another neighbor of ours had mentioned to me that she thought Delilah was interested in adopting too. So when I saw Delilah at a volunteer school luncheon, I made sure that when we talked, I mentioned our adoption. (not hard to do!)

When she asked what job I was going to do next year for the PTO I answered, "Nothing, because I will be busy with our little girl from China." I actually thought she had heard through the grapevine that we were adopting but she hadn't, so of course she was interested to hear all about it. I was interested to hear where they were in their process. At that point, they had already filled out an adoption agency application but never did any of the paperwork. They kinda put it on hold. I could see in her eyes the same feelings I had in my heart. A longing and love for a little person not known to us yet.

Delilah and Brad decided to move forward with their adoption and actually switched agencies to FTIA, the same agency we used. I was paper pregnant while she was doing her paperwork. We became very fast friends. Delilah (and many other friends and family of course) lovingly and anxiously welcomed Kamryn when we returned home from China on Dec. 21, 2005.

Delilah's LID (log in date in China) was Jan. 4, 2006.

We waited 7 months from our LID for our referral.

We thought Delilah would wait 7 months.

We thought wow, our girls could actually be the same age and of course they will be friends.

But things really slowed down in China. So 26 months later, it is with huge happy hearts that we rejoice with our dear friends for finally seeing this one picture of the little girl we've all been waiting and praying for. They've been anxiously waiting for their daughter and sister; we've been anxiously waiting with them for Kamryn's new friend.

I about fell over when Delilah called me with her referral news and said that Mary Grace's surname is Ling. NO WAY! is all I could say before the tears welled up in my eyes. That means that Mary Grace is from the SAME EXACT orphanage as Kamryn! All the orphanages name the girls, and the surname is usually the same for all children in that particular orphanage. Kamryn's Chinese name was Ling Yong Ruo. Mary Grace's Chinese name is Ling Cha Pei. Not only will they be friends, but they are orphanage sisters too. What an extra-special bond for the girls. What an extraordinary God thing!

Isn't she just so beautiful! She turns one on April 6th, 2008. They hope to travel in May and will have a website on
I can't wait to re-live our trip through them; and can't wait to welcome this sweet girl home!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Fun pictures from last weekend

This weekend is pretty low key. Kamryn hasn't been out of the house for 3 days. Double ear infection/cold. Last weekend we were busy-busy. Here are pictures from then.

My kids love Bouncetown! Kamryn loves GymQuest! See her hanging on the rope? What a monkey! She loved it! I really need to sign her up for some classes.

Last Saturday we met our friends Megan and Emma at an indoor playground. The girls had fun together, and it was easy to actually have an adult conversation while the girls played. What was funny is when I saw Kamryn at the vanity table using a fork to comb her hair. She does that periodically when she is pretending to be Ariel from the Little Mermaid. I tell her that it is a fork and not a dinglehopper but her imagination just never stops.