Life With This Child of Mine » It's the Middle that Counts Most

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Easy, Delicious Breakfast

Thank you, thank you for all of your kind thoughts and words for my last post. We are super excited – but it’s funny because I hardly get a moment to even think about it these days.  We’ve finished most of our paperwork and are gearing up for our first homestudy visit.  What’s funny about all of this is that I look back to our very first adoption and how on edge I was – everything was rushrushrush and then waitwaitwait and rinse and repeat.  Compared to now, we had very little to occupy the waiting moments…so I had loads of time to think and worry.  And with our second adoption, we had Iliya to occupy our waiting moments…but that still doesn’t compare to now.  I wouldn’t have it any other way for sure!  But given that, it may be that you don’t get a lot of adoption-focused updates.  Then again, you might.  One never knows what’s going to happen on this blog!

Anyway, changing gears.

Our very favorite breakfast these days.  Super easy and really requires few words.

Preheat the oven to 350*.

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Before getting started, it’s a good idea to cut 4 slices of bacon in half and then fry them up nice and crispy.  Then, scramble up 2 eggs.  (I often do this the night before, so it’s all nice and cool and easy to handle in the morning)

Roll out and separate a can (or two or however many you’d like, but I’ll type this recipe out for a can – which is 8) crescent rolls.  You’ll have a bunch of triangles.

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Layer some shredded cheese, bacon, and about a Tbsp. (or more or less) of egg onto the crescent roll.

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Roll it up and bake until the rolls are golden – usually about 10-12 minutes.

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This is one of our family’s most favorite breakfasts right now.  I usually have to double the recipe – which is nice because we generally have a few left over, and those can be thrown into the toaster oven the next morning.

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Happy Eating!

An Impending New Chapter

It’s hard to believe I’ve been blogging for nearly 8 years.  On April 19, 2006, I wrote and published my very first post, ever.  Back then, I didn’t know anything about blogging – but I knew that Nathan and I had decided to pursue adoption as the way to add to our family – and that I needed a central location for sharing this information and updates with our family and close friends.

This was not before Facebook, but it was before Facebook was as popular and accessible as it is now.  So, I’m not really sure how I discovered the whole idea of having a blog, but I did.  Thus, my blog was born. And, although Facebook and Instagram have definitely pulled me away a bit, in recent years, I’m so happy that the blog continues to thrive.

Anyway.  So this new chapter.

Over the past year or so, Nathan and I began loosely discussing the idea of adding to our family.  I come from a family with 4 kids and he comes from a family with 2 – it’s never been a secret that I’d love to have a large family and he’s pretty well content with whatever.  Of course, since Iliya has been reallyreallyreallyreallyreally wanting another sibling (preferably a sister, but he’d be {mostly :)} okay with another brother), we recently started talking more seriously. We’ve long abandoned the idea of more infertility treatments – it’s not that we don’t think we could handle them, but honestly, given our history, believe they are a waste of time for us.  I am destined to remain gravida 0 and what’s more, we are perfectly fine with that (and it’s so cool to say that…there was a time 10ish years ago – when I wondered if I’d ever be able to say it with real, true, honesty).  Our family has been thoroughly blessed by adoption and we are utterly, completely content to continue adding to our family through adoption.

And that’s where our new chapter begins. :)

We have 2 kiddos from Russia, so it always seemed a given that we would return to Russia for our third child (assuming the time came that we would consider adopting a third time).  But…since Russia has closed – and seems to have locked – its doors, that’s no longer a remote possibility for us.  And honestly, we don’t really have an emotional connection to any other country in the world….so, we thought, let’s revisit domestic adoption.

About 2 months ago, I contacted a local adoption agency to inquire about adoption.  I’d spoken with them, when we were considering adoption in 2006 (they are not the agency we used for our brief foray into domestic adoption prior to bringing Max home), but then we decided to go with Russia.  So I have a tiny bit of experience with this agency – and now that we live where we live, I know several families who have actually used them to complete their adoptions.

So here we are!

We’ve told our immediate families the news and it’s not been a huge secret, but I haven’t really wanted to blog about it or really start spreading the news until we officially began our homestudy.

I got a call, yesterday, from the social worker to schedule our first visit.

So I guess it’s time.

Yes.  We are beginning another adoption process!  This time, from here in the US.

And that’s all I can really think of to type at this very moment.  Now that the word is getting out – now that I feel that I can share – I’m sure I’ll have other thoughts and things to blog about as we go along in the process.  For now, though, I think I’ll leave it at that.

We’re getting ready…a new chapter is about to begin!

 

 

April 3, 2014 - 5:40 pm

Christen - Yay!! It seems our paths are always parallel. :) we recently announced our domestic adoption, too. I’m glad we will be traveling this road together.

April 3, 2014 - 7:24 pm

Ashley Warren - Congrats!!

April 3, 2014 - 7:45 pm

Celeste Peters - God is continuously blessing you and this child that will become part of your family. Thanks for sharing your blessings with us!

April 4, 2014 - 12:26 am

Nancy Mallery Powell - Congratulations!

April 4, 2014 - 1:17 am

Ronda Thomas Farrell - That’s wonderful news! What a lovely way to continue to grow your beautiful family. Best of luck in the process.

April 4, 2014 - 1:24 am

Andrea Johnston Jordan - How exciting. Congrats!

April 4, 2014 - 3:33 am

Kelly Englebert Avery - So excited for you guys. Praying for you during this special journey.

April 4, 2014 - 11:03 am

Lindsay Conway - congrats :) wonderful news

April 4, 2014 - 2:52 pm

Gladys Clements - Wonderful news! How exciting to know there is a child out there who is about to be blessed to be a part of your family! It touches my heart!

April 4, 2014 - 5:06 pm

Ani - How exciting! Congratulations!!! I’ve followed your blog from the early days and it’s been a privilege to tag along in your family adventure!
Both our kids joined our family thru domestic adoption, so it’s near and dear to my heart. Best of luck to you all!!!!

April 5, 2014 - 7:55 pm

Melissa - How wonderful! I read a lot of blogs of people who have adopted but it will be interesting to follow along on the front end of the process. Thank you for sharing a little glimpse into your life :) Good luck!

April 7, 2014 - 12:56 pm

Holly Witzel - That is wonderful!!!!

April 8, 2014 - 5:36 am

kate - Congratulations! Looking forward to all the joy–and for the comparisons on this new process.

April 15, 2014 - 11:06 am

Laura Martin - How exciting!!

Picture Post 2

Continuing {and concluding} this Picture Post.

We had a plethora of clementine oranges and I wasn’t so sure that they were going to be eaten before they finally went bad. I poked around a little bit on the world wide web and found that I can actually can the oranges that we weren’t going to eat.  Cool!  So, Iliya and I set out to peel them and can them

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We are still letting them cure, so I can’t tell you how good they taste, yet, but they sure look good!

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Random fact:  I don’t care for toddler sized beds.  I never really knew why until I was in IKEA a few weeks ago. When I saw this display, I immediately thought of the beds that beds that toddlers sleep in in orphanages.  And I guess that’s why I don’t care for toddler-sized beds.

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Iliya’s favorite snack.  Bell peppers.

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Not sure why I’m including so much food in this post.  Maybe I’m hungry. :)  Anyway, I made gumbo for the first time – better yet, in a crock pot – and it was delicious!

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The grandkids on Nathan’s side of the family.

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Oh, my niece, Daisy.  She’s a funny little thing.

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Sometimes, I am ready for the next day before bedtime.  It’s so nice to be prepared and I’m trying to do better about it – our days go so much more smoothly when I am!

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Our extended family. ;)

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Lunches.

20140330-150440.jpgPacked up and ready for a trip to the coast.

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We visited the coast with my brother, Christopher, and his wife.  While we were there, we went out on the bay pier and tried our hand at fishing.

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It was really too cold for fishing and nothing was biting.  Iliya lasted about 6 minutes before he was done.  Max was never really into it. :)

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I lost these guys for almost 2 weeks.  Side benefit of working at home and being a SAHM – I only have 2 keys I really need.  House key and car key.  Fortunately, I could use Nathan’s till we found mine.

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We’ve been reading through the Laura Ingalls Wilder series and it’s been a source of lots of pretend play, these days.  A few days ago, the boys made the dugout house in On the Banks of Plum Creek.

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20140330-150648.jpgAnd then Daisy came for a visit and we had a fun time with her.  Here are the 3 grandkids on my side of the family.

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Yeah, maybe I should’ve called this post “Mostly Food and a Few People.”  :)  Because here is a demonstration of how you can make boiled peanuts in a crockpot.  Okay, maybe not a demonstration, but a photo of Nathan working his magic.

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And these things were very magical, indeed.

20140330-150737.jpgOne of Iliya’s chores over the weekend was to carry all the dirty laundry from the back of the house to the laundry room. He enlisted Max’s help…though I’m not so sure how much help Max actually was.

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I’m trying a container herb garden this year. I put it on the back patio, so it’s likely to receive better care and regular pinching than it does when it’s in garden away from the house. Only thing is that once our oak grows its leaves, it may be too shady. Guess time will tell. Sidenote: I have no clue if I planted this in the most efficient way.

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I say that Iliya doesn’t enjoy reading…but he will do it.  In fact, sometimes, I catch him reading to Max and it’s such a sweet moment to me.

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Picture Post

Because I’m trying to get better at posting when things happen, I’m going to do a couple of Random Total Picture Overload posts and then try to stop doing this. Maybe you enjoy it, but I think it’s a bit ridiculous.  And…although it is definitely ridiculous, it’s still happening for the next couple of days. So if you’re a random person who doesn’t care to look at photos of our family, that’s perfectly fine.  But, if you’re my mom or mother-in-law……..you’re welcome.

:)

My life consists of many, many, manymanymany cars.

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You see how long I save photos before posting?  It really has gotten ridiculous.  Anyway,  Iliya and I went on a little date to see Frozen – when it was still in theaters.  Thoroughly enjoyed it, mostly because of the music…and the animation was sparkly and beautiful.

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We did end up having to go on a Frozen soundtrack reprieve, though, after listening to the soundtrack about 482,000 times.  I started waking up in the middle of the night with the songs running through my head and an inability to fall back asleep.  So, even though we love the soundtrack, we take it in small doses, even now.

Moving on. One day, when we were doing a money lesson, Iliya and I each started our own stores.  Iliya got really creative – his was located in our bathroom.  And on the door, he rigged up a bell that would jingle when the door was opened.  The bell was made – most appropriately – out of money.  That kid’s creativity – and use for scotch tape – knows no bounds.

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Some time after we had seen A Christmas Carol, Iliya introduced our dog to us as Gracie Marley.  She looks very much like Jacob Marley…only she’s a dog.

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Spike.  Against all odds (including one escape attempt in which I accidentally found him), this lizard is still alive.

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In Occupational Therapy, Max has been working on lower body control and form.  One of the exercises he does is to walk on his knees.  Walking this way improves some of his muscle tone/posture in the lower body, but it’s not a quick way to go from point A to point B.  One day, I was in a hurry to get him put down for a nap and – of course – he didn’t want to go down for a nap that day.  So what did he do?  He pouted, got down on his knees, and walked this way all the way to his room.  Guess he showed me! :)

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Every few weeks, I make chicken fingers for supper.  Not long ago, I had a pineapple that needed to be eaten and decided to make a sweet and sour dipping sauce – a la Captain D’s.  This stuff was DELICIOUS and very much like the sauce I love from Capt. D’s.  I just put pineapple, honey, and yellow mustard in the food processor and – voila! Instant yum.

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I was rearranging some things in the house and had put them in a box as I was moving them around.  Turned around and guess who’d decided to take up residence in the box?

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So I grabbed another box for him to sit in.  He found a Highlights and got really comfy.

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Iron Man and his Iron Man house.

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These kids looove their daddy.

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We decided to make bug out bags – or, as we call them, preparedness bags.  We filled them with things we might need to survive for a few days, in the event of a natural disaster or other reason for needing them.  That’s vague, isn’t it?  I guess that we never think we need to be prepared for something to happen until we actually need to be prepared for it.  So, while we’re hoping that we won’t ever need these bags, we figure it can’t hurt to have them ready.

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If there’s one character that Max loves, it’s…..yeah, you already know it.  And if you don’t, just look at his warmup suit.

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This boy and his dog.

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Did I mention the boys love their dad?

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This is not an action shot.  And yes, I moved him just after I snapped this photo.  :)

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There are some days that are just not the best school days.

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My workout partners.

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Do you see those silhouettes?  My brother, Johnathan, made them for me.  And I <3 them!

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We’ve really gotten into watching these eagles.  For a while, I kept the link open on my computer and we’d watch whenever we walked by.  It’s been a fascinating learning experience!

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Life.

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Sometimes, while I’m waiting for fruit to ripen, I like to use it for decoration.

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Sometimes, we make jello.  Just some grape juice and gelatin.  Yummy.  (if you like jello, that is)

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They say that to get a child interested in reading, you have to find books about their interests.  I think we’re making headway…though it’s very slow going to cultivate this particular reader.

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These final two photos are of Iliya the Helper.  He’s really gotten good about helping without being asked – and trying to take on the heavier of things in order to lighten my load.  It’s really sweet.

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And then sometimes, he pretends like he’s a waiter at a Mexican restaurant.  Which sort of makes me nervous…but, at least he’s helping. :)

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To be continued….

Cousins <3

We had a surprise visitor today!

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It was so much fun having Daisy hang out with us today. We were blessed with a lovely day for playing outside…Max kept running around saying, “This is the BEST DAY EVER!!” and he really meant it. He’s just got a way with words. :) I had fun watching them pal around and interact. It reminded me of times gone by, when I got to see cousins I didn’t see too often….and that was really cool, too.

Glad to see ya, Dais!

>

On This Day in History…

Y’all.

It’s been 7 years.

Seven years since we met this little guy for the first time.

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Seven years since our life changed and the whole idea that we were going to be bringing another human into our life – changing our life and his in unspeakable ways – became crazy real.

In a couple days, it will be 7 years since we told him goodbye and headed home to wait for 4 months to return to him once again.  And to think that those 4 months seemed like an eternity.

But those 4 months passed, however slowly, and here we are, 7 years later.  He’s grown a couple of feet, lost all his little bitty teeth and grown big ones, and made us the proudest parents on the planet.  He’s a smart thing, too.  So curious with all of his questions.  I can look back on those first days with him and still see little things today that remind me of that baby.  I feel sad because he’s not a baby anymore…while feeling so happy that he’s bloomed and grown and become the big kid that he is now.

I think I’ve shared video of our first day together, before, but tonight, I thought I’d dig into the video archives to share a little bit more never-been-posted video of our first day.  To say that he was loved by the baby home staff is an understatement and I have a lot more video than this, but it was going to take way too long to upload.  So we’ll just go with this for now.

Seven years ago.   Time passes so quickly.

March 26, 2014 - 11:23 pm

Aunt Kristy - Is that right before he looked around and started to cry? Oh my gracious, the memories!! Seven fantastic years :). Sweet boy!

March 27, 2014 - 9:34 am

Melissa - Kristy, yes. I just couldn’t post a video of him crying last night. My heart was already broken at the time that has passed!

March 27, 2014 - 10:21 am

Becky - Such a little munchkin! It is absolutely amazing to think of how quickly time has flown!

First Soccer {Un}practice

As I planned for this week, I consulted my calendar and noted that Iliya’s first soccer practice was on Monday at 5PM. So to make life easier, I also planned our meal for that day to include crockpot BBQ, baked beans that could cook while we were at practice, and some slaw I had made earlier in the day.

We were ready.

I know, it seems silly, because – well, doesn’t everyone play soccer these days?

Perhaps so, but not these everyonesThis is our first go-around with playing organized sports – not necessarily because we haven’t wanted Iliya to play (it hasn’t been top priority, obviously), but because I have been overwhelmed with options where we live.  Nathan and I both grew up in small towns with only one league for each sport (that I remember, anyway). Here, there are multiple leagues for any given sport and if you talk to any family, you could get any answer on what their kids do.

Yeah, overwhelming.

So, we decided to just hang tight and ended up learning about the Upward soccer league here.  I was talking with another mom at our homeschool co-op, who told me that her kids play at the Upward league in a small, neighboring community.  It feels much more like home and sounded like a good idea.

Finally, with a destination in sight, we signed Iliya up.  Purchased his first soccer cleats, shin guards, and socks.  Took him to the evaluation (in Upward, everyone gets to play, so the evaluation was to get an idea of his skill level) and got a call that told us when his first practice would be.

This past weekend, a glance at my calendar indicated that the practice was Monday (yesterday).

So, with BBQ in the crockpot, beans in the oven, and slaw marinating in the fridge, we headed out.  Nathan left work early to meet us there.  Yes, it was a big deal. :)

When we arrived, I noticed that Iliya was one of the smallest kids (that’s him on the far right in the blue top & black shorts).

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Not that big of a deal, since he’s on the smaller side, but these kids seemed a lot bigger to me.  I did wonder if he’d been inadvertently placed with an older group.  But, the coach didn’t bat an eye, so Iliya just ran and went through the drills like he belonged.  It was obvious that he wasn’t as coordinated as some of the other kids, but also, not that big of a deal.  Afterall, he’d never played soccer before.

Toward the end of the end of the practice, the coach came over and asked what grade Iliya is in.  Second, I replied, and he kindly informed me that the younger kids’ practice would be next Monday.  Oops!  Rookie mistake #1: write down the wrong date on your calendar!  The coach was more than happy to let Iliya finish out the practice and as Nathan and I talked about it, we felt it was probably a good thing that I’d made a mistake {silver lining!}.  This way, he gets an extra practice AND, he got his introduction into a more difficult level – next week probably won’t be nearly as difficult for him.

So there you go.  Iliya’s first {unofficial} soccer practice.

The crow I had to eat thanks to my error wasn’t all too tasty…but that easy meal of BBQ, beans, and slaw had never tasted better.

March 26, 2014 - 9:47 am

kate - We cheered with Upward next year and think it’s a nice program. Hooray for nice coaches–and nice kids!

A List

It’s not uncommon for you walk into our house and find a list I’ve written on our handy little IKEA chalkboard. I’ve found that lists are an effective way to help Iliya know what’s coming up on any given day.  He likes to have a routine and although our daily routine changes from day-to-day, depending on what we’ve got going on, having a visual reminder really helps.

I’ll be honest.  Sometimes, I forget to update the list…so, it could be that you might walk into our house and find an expired (only by anywhere from 2 to 5 days!) list.  But I do try.

Anyway.  Not long ago, I glanced over from where I was cooking supper and saw that Max was scribbling over my list for the day.  My gut instinct was to ask him to leave the chalkboard alone and then I thought,  1) hello, kid toy!  and 2) he needs some prewriting practice!   I’m a work in progress and it’s liberating to admit that.

Anyway-anyway, I then started listening and realized that he was making a list, too!

20140312-222005.jpgAnd here are some of the things he put on the agenda for the next day:

  • Eat muffins
  • Have some privacy {quiet time}
  • Learn our lesson
  • Take a bath
  • Wash the towels
  • Put on our jammies
  • Eat our yogurt
  • Learn our lesson
  • Mommy read us a story
  • All people open their presents
  • Go to school
  • Write our name

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I was exhausted just thinking about all he had planned!  And yes, I left it for several days. :)

March 25, 2014 - 9:00 am

kate - I love it! Max can plan my day anytime.

{More} Our Life…In Print

A few years ago, I had my blog put into print.

Nothing fancy, but at the time, I decided I would do a yearly backup of my blog into print.  And then…about 3 years went by and I finally decided to go back in and get the next 3 volumes printed up.

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I’m so glad I’m doing this!  It’s not all that pretty and to be honest, I’m not worried about it being pretty.  I now have 6 volumes of our life story printed and will be working on that 7th one at the end of this year.  I love how easy this is and am thankful that something like it is available. <3

March 14, 2014 - 11:11 am

Crystal Dechant - Which website did you use?

C4C #3

This past weekend, I attended my third Created for Care retreat in Georgia.

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I had the BEST time with these girls this year. It seems like ages ago that we got to experience our first “adoption pregnancies” together and it’s such a special bond between each of us. I can’t say how thankful I am that we get to see each other once a year and spend a weekend catching up and sharing our lives and encouraging each other.

I think I’m the only one who still blogs (if you can call it that!) so I won’t call anyone out here.  But girls, if you read this, it was so great to see y’all!

On Being a SAHM: Take 2

I know. I’m great at saying I’m going to post something and then not ever getting around to it.

This time, it’s not really that I haven’t gotten around to it, but more that every time I sit down to actually write about how much I enjoy being a SAHM something happens that makes me wonder how in the world I’m going to write about something my heart isn’t really feeling at the moment.

Take for instance today.  We’ve had a few really nice days.  Max has been sick, but otherwise, it’s been pretty smooth around these parts.  Our morning was nice so this afternoon, I decided I would sit down and write the followup to my previous blog post during the kids’ quiet time.  As it turns out, Max didn’t nap at all.  Then, later in the afternoon, some (well fed, obviously taken care of) beagles showed up in our yard and when I told Iliya we couldn’t keep them, he decided to be angry at me for the rest of the afternoon.  He packed some clothes into his backpack and told me he was going to leave and rough it with the beagles, since I wouldn’t let them stay at our house.  The rain and cold (and I) quickly squelched that plan, which made him even more ill.

Ah, such is life.

So I’m going to take a decidedly negative afternoon and focus on the good that comes with staying at home with my kids.

——-

And then I’m going to get sidetracked for a couple more days and pick the narration right back up. :)  This time, from a much better day.  One can never tell how long it’ll take to write a blog post these days.  So hopefully you’re good with that, mom ;), because it’s where I am.

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So.

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To recap – in a former life, I enjoyed working outside the home.  After I graduated from college and got a job, I worked for a few years before kids ever came into the picture.  I was in a habit of working, I enjoyed it, and never really thought twice about doing anything else, once we had kids.  To be honest, when we came home with Iliya (I think I’ve written about this before), I felt a need to get back to work fairly quickly once his attachment seemed to be progressing at a good rate.  I’m not sure why this is, but my best guess is that my routine for the previous 10 years had included going to school or work during the day and spending my home-time in the evenings.  And when Iliya came home, I was off-kilter enough with that I felt myself being pulled back to going back to work – so that I could re-establish some sort of routine.

I’m just sort of thinking, here.

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Anyway, without rambling any farther along, I’ll say that the idea that – I could never be a good stay at home mom - was planted firmly in my head.  So I said I could/would never be a fulltime stay at home mom.  Besides, how could our bills get paid if I wasn’t working to help pay them?

Enter Max.  He is my never say never child.

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I’ve discussed, before, how I defied my never on the subject of staying at home.

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But homeschooling?  That was a different game.  I could never, neverever homeschool my kids. I just didn’t have the patience.

And I don’t know if I’ve ever really discussed it before, but here we are, defying my never ever on that subject.

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And do I like staying at home and homeschooling?  Most days, yes…even on difficult days, I find that the good outweighs the bad.  Of course, there are some days, I would give anything to be able to sit at a desk with a computer in front of me, knowing my kids are safely planted – for a few hours – in the care of another adult, with my only concern being what time I need to leave to make it to my next meeting.

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But I’m coming to realize, even during the frustrating, exhausting, awful days, that my job is being at home.  Because not all that long ago, I felt like I had multiple jobs that were of equal importance…but now, I have one main job – and that’s to be the best Christian wife and mama I can possibly be.  This is what I need to do.  I never knew it before now…but 2 years into this whole journey, and I realize that it’s been my calling all along.

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And it’s so cool to be able to say that I’m teaching Iliya to read (earlier, he was sitting in the chair to me as I composed an email to my sister – I thought nothing of it until he asked me about something I had written to her – nothing is private anymore! :)).

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It’s nervewrecking to think that I am with my family 24/7.  It’s tiring.  It requires planning.  And yes, I do part-time work during rest time and in the evenings – I teach a university child development course and I am also a photographer.  So sometimes, it’s quadruply tiring.  But I am part of the best team in the world.

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Exhausting.  Nervewrecking.  And y’all – even on the days that going back to bed seems like the best option – it’s also good.  I’ve just had to rework my definition of “good” from meaning that everything goes perfectly and smoothly and without a hitch in the world.

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Because “good” means that – for positive or otherwise – I get to see things I never might’ve known about my kids.  To witness their development firsthand.  And, in the end, to really feel like I’m making the most of everyday.

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{Yes, I do have help in the form of a robotic vacuum cleaner – and a child who enjoys following it around.}

I’ve always wanted to be the person who looks back on her kids’ lives and has no regrets about the way I spent my time.  As I plug along in motherhood, I’m realizing that that’s a pretty lofty unattainable goal…of course, there are going to be regrets and we’re all going to wish we’d done some things differently.

But in the end, time is going to pass quickly.  And I’m learning that staying at home with the kids is really a huge step in my believing that I’ve done all I can do to make the most of my time with them.  One day, they’ll be gone and these days will be but a memory.

20140225-104951.jpgAnd those bills?  Somehow, they get paid.

March 7, 2014 - 12:13 am

Loreen Gunter - Beautiful post! I am a grammie raising my grandkids and homeschooling. I raised three kids & was a SAHM for the most part & have never regretted a moment (well mostly…there are tough days whether you are home all day or not) Raising & homeschooling my grandkids has been a challenge many times (mainly because I’m older now), but the blessings are so HUGE ♥ I would absolutely not trade it for anything in the world & only wish I had been brave enough to home school my grown kids. God bless you and your family. I have always felt raising my kids & grandkids was my calling, too, and once I did realize that, everything was right with the world. It’s such a blessing ♥ P.S. I’ve been following your blog since your Illia was small & I so enjoy hearing about & seeing your precious boys grow. Their smiles light the world :)

March 7, 2014 - 2:09 am

Cecilia Nettleton - I have to laugh at Iliya packing his bag ready to take off. I don’t remember my kids trying such, but I can remember when I took off for the neighbors against my mother’s wishes and my dad coming after me.
Cecilia

March 27, 2014 - 5:49 pm

Buddy Nancy Harris - In your free time ha ha you need to start that book you can write. Love