Sunday, November 29, 2009

Some archived photos from Korea

I've had these photos saved since we left Korea.  I had hoped to find their families and I did find two of them.  So, I thought I'd go ahead and put the pictures of the girls and I visiting the babies at the Holt Reception Center in May.  These babies either didn't have foster families yet or were waiting for their families and living their during their entire wait.  These babies are well loved and there was no doubt how well taken care of they were by the house mothers.

The little guy here has been waiting for quite some time.

The babies below were under 5 months old.  The younger ones are in a whole separate room.

I held this little girl, below, for quite a while.  She REALLY loved being held.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving 2009!

Hope everyone out there is having a great Thanksgiving weekend filled with family and love.

That said, Thanksgiving has taken on different meaning as I've gotten older...not that I'm that old.  I've ALWAYS loved Thanksgiving.  I love the food, for sure, and being with my whole family.  Yes, I'm 35 years old and we still get together with my extended family including aunts, uncles, grandma, cousins and sometimes a great-great aunt.  I love that about my one side of the family.  My other side has always lived further away and were just never that close.  Not to mention having your non-typical family around.  We have friends that are as good as family.  They're a lot like brothers and sisters to us and extended aunts and uncles to our children.  You have to love family like that.

But, as I said it's taken on different meaning.  We still get together with the whole family, eat until we're sick, laugh, play games and catch up on the events over the summer months when everyone's too busy to get together.  Now, I can take this holiday and sit back and really give thanks for my life.  Give thanks for our lives.  Give thanks for some of the bad that's happened that's shaped who I've become, who I will be and my amazing life I've been given.

I'll regress for a bit to say that almost 14 years ago we lost our first daughter.  That hurt so bad and it still pains from time-to-time, but I now know that without her loss my oldest son would not be here.  I was pregnant with him before she was due to be born.   And as scary as it was to have two born with defects and me having a chromosome translocation, which I once thought was the end of my world, I am thankful for these events and the way God made me.  I don't know that I would have been fearless enough to take a leap of faith, with not enough money, to adopt 3 amazing kids.  I use to grieve my translocation and it use to hurt to see other people pregnant when I thought I would never have kids.  I'm so thankful for this and have been for sometime.  Every Thanksgiving as I'm standing in line with my husband and kids filling little plates I'm thankful all those little plates need us!

So this year is Jaemin's 1st Thanksgiving with us.  I get very emotional on their firsts and you would think after 5 I wouldn't, but I'm just so happy and amazed at the gifts in my life and the second chances we've been given to be together as a family.  It's a joy going to grandma's and watching him explore and be with his cousins and extended family and smiling away.  It's a joy having him with us.  He's a true joy and this year, I thank God for my baby Jae!


Sunday, November 22, 2009

A little early, but...

the Christmas tree and everything is up!  I usually put it up after Thanksgiving, but it leaves me rushing to get it up and get the kids' photos done for the Christmas cards.  Last year, I thought I was being smart and took a regular picture of the 4 together and ordered cards early.  Then, when we put the tree up after Thanksgiving they found their Christmas hats, that they wear annually and complained that I didn't put that on the card.  So they all put on their hats and we took the photos anyways.  See, we've been taking photos with these hats on since K first came home, so about 5 or 6 years now.

This years preview.

Here's the kids decorating for Christmas.  Even Jaemin started getting into the decorations.

Odds and ends and kid funnies

Just some things that the kids have said or done in the past couple weeks and with illnesses, I've just been entirely too tired to post.

First, I have to post this picture of my youngest three watching tv.  Poor Jaemin looks like a Hello Kitty sandwich.  My girls love Hello Kitty, which is very appropriate since she is SO big in Korea.  We had bought these little plastic fans in Korea to stay cool and the girls got Hello Kitty.  Chelsi broke Kaelin's yesterday and to say the least, K was not happy.

I swear, Chelsi has THE most amazing memory.  She remembers just about everything word for word, commercials, songs, everything.  Brian was singing that Lady Antebellum song the other day, "I need you now" and Chels just kept repeating the words "I'm a little drunk and I need you now" over and over again.  Good thing we weren't up for a social worker visit.  :)  I had to go grocery shopping at Walmart today.   I put her in the cart and she saw the word "Walmart" on the cart and repeated their whole motto "Save money.  Live better.  Walmart" and yeah, I had to google it!  The girl can hear a song once maybe twice and anything she understands she will sing.  She loves "Chicken Fry" and "Toes" and sings them perfectly, though she at least substitutes words when they're not little kid words.  She reads everything too, so be careful what you spell!  Today she told me the bathroom door was locked and it made her "nervous".  :)

Kaelin, on the other hand, can't remember anything.....or pretends not to.  I'm not really sure which.  She says really ditzy things, but I'm not sure that's not fake and she doesn't just want to hear herself talk.  :)  She'll say something kind of dippy one second and the next REALLY smart.  The other day she asked us if we could have a tornado in the living room since the ceiling fan and fireplace were both going and that would cause hot air to mix with cold air.  Are you serious??  :)


Friday, November 20, 2009

Such a trivial Christmas purchase, really

but it felt so big.  Not large as in expensive, but large as in meaningful.

I had to stop at the craft store tonight because I wanted to make some new ornaments to include J.  I had made some for each child a few years ago and I want to paint new ones with their Korean names; to include Jaemin.  While I was there I realized he had no stocking for the fireplace.  So I studied each stocking and thought about whether he would still like it when he was a bit older.  You know you can't get a baby stocking for a boy who will, one day, be a big boy.  So I found this deep blue stocking with a white cuff that looked a lot like big brother Chase's red one.  I got new holders that matched....all 5.  It felt a little poignant for some reason.

I guess with all 4 of the older kids we'd known we were having each one of them the Christmas before they each joined our family.  I was always preparing so much for them; including buying their stocking for the next Christmas.  This is the first time I've done it backwards.  Now, I just need to get him a "Baby's 1st Christmas" ornament so he can have one like his big brothers do.

Wow, really....I shouldn't be shocked anymore.  6 months later I'm still shocked or shaken a little that we have this sweet little boy in our house.  It really seems so surreal when I actually have moments of time to think about it.

Love you J!


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Yep, today's our 15th!!  And what does Brian say to me this morning?  He says "you know, in another 15 years we'll both be 50".  Do you really think I want to think about that right now?  :)

Anyways, pretty much a n0rmal day, but he stopped at the store and got some roses to put on the table and wrote me a poem.  It was actually very sweet.  I'm not allowed to reiterate it anywhere to anyone ever, so I can't post it here.  :)

After 15 years, we do still love each other, but God I'm so tired all the time.  There's hardly anytime to show it anymore.  It will get better when they get a little older, right?


Sunday, November 15, 2009

Danged 'ole rainy days

What's a boy to do?

Well, I can watch the rain for a bit.  Yeah, that's all well and nice, but there is surely something better to do.  I have a snake...I can play with him.  Maybe I'll just read for a bit.  I'm a smart boy, ya know.  Okay, I'm a happy boy!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

We did it and he looks older






We knew the day was, inevitably, coming.  He was going to need his FIRST haircut.  I decided tonight was the night.  I gave him a sucker and Cole took pictures.  He did REALLY well and LOVED his sucker.  Unfortunately, now the curls are gone.  Maybe they'll come back and maybe they won't.  Either way we were going to have to say goodbye eventually.  I saved a lock for his baby book and a lock for his birth mother.  He looks all grown up now.  :(

BTW, it really was just a trim.  I didn't take very much off.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Catchin' Up

So while I was sick, I was still getting out the camera from time-to-time, but just didn't have the energy to upload and post.  We really haven't had too much going on or any stories to tell.  Stories are always best if I can put them on right after they happen before I, every so easily, forget the details.

J reverted back to wanting to be in the carrier while I did dishes the other day.  He promptly fell asleep.


The kids were able to play outside all weekend.



J and C got to play at home with mommy today, after a morning of errands.

And snacktime over the weekend.

A little secret about me

Besides loving photographs and especially taking them of my kids, I write.  Not many people know this AT ALL!  I don't even let Brian read what I write.

Over the years I have a small collection of poems and stories and even some lyrics.  I've been writing poems since our first daughter.  She was a huge inspiration.  Then, I started writing stories about our 2nd daughter.  It's really just a series of children's stories that describe her encounters in life.  I've written some lyrics.  Though, I am NOT musically inclines whatsoever, so the lyrics are what they are.  But, sometimes there are nights that I wake and can't sleep until I write my thoughts down.  I keep a diary by my bed and this is all I write in it.  Scribbles of poems, lyrics and stories until I get them the way I want.

Now, what I'd really love is to find someone willing to publish the stories.  They are about adoption somewhat and just being a kids; mostly.  They are a tribute to my sweet little girls!


Monday, November 9, 2009

Thoughts for another mother

Tonight while the older kids were playing downstairs, we were playing with J.  He was walking back and forth between him.  As he wobbled his way over to me I thought how much his birth mother is missing.  She is missing such big moments in these kids' lives.  I can't imagine the loss she feels in that.  I pray that one day she knows and is comforted, as much as possible, that we love her children as much as humanly possible by anyone.  We love them to the ends of the Earth and more.  We love holding them when they cry; whether they're upset or happy.  We love every little hug and kiss along with learning moments.

I wish I could tell her how much we love them.  I wish she could see, just for a moment, a glimpse into our lives.  I mostly wish that she is able to come to peace with her pain and have a good life.  And I promise we will always do our best to give our children the best lives possible with all the love and support we have.

I just needed to get those thoughts out as I felt sad for those moments in J's life, knowing how much I would miss missing them.  From one mom to another.  (To J's Korea mom)


Saturday, November 7, 2009


I know it's been a little while, for me anyways, on not posting anything.  I'm usually able to post at least a couple of times a week.  But, this week, I have two sick kiddos and myself.  So, while C is getting better, J still has a little tailend of croup and I have bronchitis/pneumonia.  When I'm feeling better, it will be back to normal.

Youn-su, I was worried you would think I abandoned the blog.  I'll get some pics of J up soon.