Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Proud Mama...

Adopted or not, the apple does not fall far from the tree.


A really happy, geeked-out tree.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Write Stuff...


I discovered my love for writing at an early age, attributed to several encouraging teachers and fueled by a love of reading.  I idolized Erma Bombeck.  It has been my release, the blogs have been cheap great therapy and an electronic life journal of the past five years.  Not to mention all the friends I've made because of them.  Hello?  Bonus!

I'm not great at it, I just love doing it.

The day I wrote DH's eulogy was the last time I remember pouring myself into words.  It was a foggy endeavor at best.  I had posted it on Full Circle but I'm not linking back to it.  I haven't read it in a long while but I do recall thinking I could've done a better job.  Quite honestly, I don't care to revisit any of that.

It has taken a year and a half to get my writing groove back.  I'm beginning to see things again and think, "Hey, that's a post!" and definitely more mindful of the moments (especially those sweet and funny ones).  No longer a chore, the words are starting to flow and I'm getting that warm fuzzy again.

It feels damn good.

I'll never be the same girl I was before the summer of 2011 but that's not necessarily a bad thing.  We grow and change as we're molded by our experiences.  Character building, heart crushing, joyful, sorrowful, frustrating moments.  I've got a lot going on in this little package but there's more good than bad and that's all I can ask for.  I remember wondering back in the darkness of that horrible time if I would ever feel like me again.  It's a paralyzing thought and a hell of a process but you do, eventually, find your way back home.

Dorothy is right, there's no place like it.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Birth Certificate Blunder...


I sent off the adoption paperwork to get the kids' new birth certificates sometime back and they arrived yesterday.  Visualize: Happy Dance.  Surprisingly there isn't much to them.  It's basically their names, birth dates, my name and age at the time of their birth, and the city and county of their birth.  Easy Peasy data entry right?

Apparently not.

Someone completely left off the city and county of birth on Little Buddy's certificate.  Zilch, zip, nada.  They used my married name (instead of my maiden name) on both.  I bet I could just fill in the blanks and make corrections with a Sharpie.. that'll fly at Social Security, right?

Oh yeah.

I've surmised the fine employees at Vital Records voted for Amendment 64 last November must've been having a rough day.  In the meantime, I await a returned phone call from said office, surely they'll get back to me soon.

Smiling.. Nodding.. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Another First...

We fostered several sibling sets (and one single child) before SweetPea and LittleBuddy arrived in 2010, their ages ranging from 6 months to 4 1/2 years old.  I had boxes of children's clothes in the basement, marked and at the ready.  We never knew what we would need so we had it all.  Early on it was discovered the children never arrived with enough clothes to make it beyond a day or two.  (On a side note, all of my little girls were sent with armloads of hats.  Winter hats, summer hats.. it didn't matter what time of year it was.  I never quite understood that but whatever).  We always ended up buying them new clothes (which they took with them when they transitioned home) but the backup was a necessity with each case.

Anyway..

After the adoption, I donated most of the clothes I had stockpiled, except for the box girls 4T's.  My older girls were on the smaller side and never really grew into them but now they are coming in handy (as Miss SweetPea is growing like a weed).

Last week, I scoured Kohl's with a 30% off coupon (aren't those THE BEST!?), picking up stuff for the kids.  This is one of the shirts I purchased for my daughter, although a larger size (a major bargain I couldn't pass up), I figured she would grow into it ...


AAAND.. it fits.

It's official:  My foster kiddo inventory is nearly outgrown and no longer needed.  That final box will soon be taken to Goodwill and another chapter closes.

A first and a last, all wrapped up in one.  

Friday, January 18, 2013

RLW On Open Adoption...

When my fost/adopt journey began in 2007, the county made it abundantly clear they were in favor of some type of openness between the adoptive family and bio family post adoption (if it's safe and healthy for the children).  So what does "open" look like and what does that mean exactly?  In my world it's basically some type of ongoing communication.  You don't have to spend weekends and holidays together (as I initially thought the social workers meant, much to my horror) or even have face to face contact for that matter.  It could be as simple as getting a PO Box (for privacy's sake) or creating an email address specifically for the bio family member so they can reach the child through (and is monitored by) you.

To be honest, the whole "open" idea didn't sit well with me at all in the beginning but as training progressed it began to make sense.  It's not about us (the adults) it is for the kids and what they need to heal properly.  Every case is different.  Deciding on how open you wish for the contact to be (or not be) depends on your comfort level.  It's a wait and see .. and completely up to the adoptive parent(s).  Just like any other family, once adopted they are your kids and you call the shots.

Period.

We have maintained contact with one sibling and see each other throughout the year, sometimes visiting each others homes.  His parents and I exchange emails, phone calls and pictures.  He was adopted by his paternal grandparents who are solid, hardworking people with very kind hearts.  There is no one else in the family I deem safe or healthy.. not by a long shot.  The three kids really enjoy getting together but admittedly, it is still a wee bit hard on them.  Kind of like pulling a band aid off, it does open old wounds but we work through it.  I am happy to report it has gotten much better over the years.  The kids know they'll see each other again and there is little to no drama afterwards.

As it should be.

My number one priority is to raise healthy, happy children and break the generational cycle that has destroyed many of their relatives' lives.  To love, protect and keep them on the right path.  My mission is to bring them up to be the best little people they can be so they can make their own way and thrive in this big, crazy world.

Yeah, just like all other parents.

The day will come when they ask about their bio parents and possibly want to reach out.  The urge to find them natural and I totally get it.  Hello?  I've been doing my bio mom search for how long now?  When that day comes for them (again, if it is safe) I pray they are mature enough and fully equipped to handle it.

Myself, included.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Breathe...

After the first of this year, I knew life would kick up a notch.  The homestead must be readied to go on the market this Spring and that, my friends, is one daunting task.  I intentionally waited until after the holidays to focus on packing (WHY do I have SO MUCH crap?!) and I'm now in full blown mode.  Boxes, packing tape, wrapping paper GA-LORE.

Meh.

So yesterday as I was in my daily crazy spin heading out the door for work, I stopped and looked out the kitchen window.  This is the stuff I can't forget to appreciate.  It's a view I won't have much longer and dang it, it's gorgeous.  2011 taught me that life has a funny way of not rolling with your game plan and you just cannot take moments like these for granted.. 

 Breathe In .. Breathe Out... Sip Coffee..


Ahhh..

Resume Spin..

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Speaking Of The Broncos Game..

One of the few awesome moments from last Saturday's game took place before kickoff.  G and I were selected to assist in the pregame flag ceremony.  We were on the 25 yard line when Peyton was introduced, the National Anthem was sung and the jets flew overhead.  We walked in single file past the Ravens on their sideline and, most importantly, had the honor of carrying our American flag.  

Awesome.

We had to power down our cells when we went into the tunnels and through the bowels of the stadium so the few pictures I do have are basically bundled, freezing fans walking in a line.  

Stuff of Note:
  1. According to G, Flacco (who stood mere feet from us while practicing) is really skinny (all I saw was SUPER tall but that's just me).
  2. From our on field vantage point, there is no rush like 76K fans losing their minds.
  3. It could've been colder and we wouldn't of noticed or cared.
  4. Most of the Ravens are crazy-puny (okay, that's totally not true.. I'm still bitter).
  5. Up close, Jim John Harbough is very unattractive (again, false.. but I thought Dusty needed to hear that .. you're welcome, Joey)
  6. Ray Lewis was crying like a baby prior to kickoff (TRUE).
This is the tunnel we entered the field from:

Also from these seats we had several heart attacks, swore, suffered frostbite, screamed, clapped, high 5'd and stomped our feet like maniacs ..

For SIX QUARTERS

At the end of the day, they're still our beloved team and we'll be back next year to cheer them to more victories.

In the meantime, I'm glad I stopped smack talking Leigh Anne Tuohy on Twitter... 

Monday, January 14, 2013

C-C-C- ...

COLD!


The cold has been downright painful in our parts.  This shot was taken sitting at the stoplight on my way to work this morning.  Yeah, that's a 2.

Ick.

We went to the Broncos game on Saturday (NO COMMENTS FROM THE PEANUT GALLERY, PLEASE!--lol) and nearly died from heartbreak frostbite.

The dogs are jiggy, the kids are loopy and I'm plain grumpy.  If I see one more So Cal friend on Facebook cry about 55 degrees just one more time, I'm going to lose it.

Okay, no I won't.. but I will say that we're supposed to hit the 50's by Friday and if we do, I'm busting out the flippy floppies!

Let's Talk Open Adoption...

Open Adoption:  It's huge topic in our world and a very important discussion.  
Please take a moment to check out today's post by Lori.

Friday, January 4, 2013