About Me

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Married twenty-three years to my wonderful husband and best friend. We have 3 "home-grown" kids, 1 hand-picked by God from Africa and 1 very hyper-active dog. Our life is blessed. We are a close knit family with strong Christian beliefs. And just recently we have bought ourselves a farm. Do we know what we are doing? Nope. Come along with us on our journey…you might have a great laugh or two.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I might like doing that a litte bit better....

When we returned from our vacation, my husband and I decided that it was time to get very serious about buying a vehicle for me. Now, I liken this process to going to your favorite dentist and having all your wisdom teeth pulled...in one day. Not many people like it, but they know they have to do it. I am...one of those people.

Since we keep our vehicles for at least ten years or more, it's not a decision I can just rush in and say..."ooh, I'll take that one". I mean it's ten years of driving the same color...it's ten years of o.k. everyone can we all fit inside this one...and still be happy together after 12 hours of driving (o.k....that happy thing doesn't always happen...but at least not kill each other by the time we get there).

And then there is the fancy-shmancy do-a-ma-jingy's that all the vehicles have now a days. Do I really need 500 radio stations in my car? (I barely get to hear ANY music over my kids in the backseat....)

So as my husband left this morning and asked me..."haven't changed your mind about the vehicle, have you?"... I just get only a slight panic in my stomach and wish that my dentist were available this afternoon...I might like doing that a little bit better.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Daddy of the Year Award...


My husband has been out of town this past week and just came back last night...so better late than never...we celebrated Father's Day. I have to admit...We got the best one! He's a fantastic father to the kids and a great provider for our family. He's crazy about us...and we're crazy about him. So here's to you...you get the "Daddy of the Year Award" in this house
...and we love you so much!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More bars in more places...


Need a good laugh... Well, my husband said the funniest thing on our vacation and I never realized how true it was until we got home and I was going through our vacation photos. Every time I wanted to get a good photo of the kids I would yell out..."line 'em up kids" and they would place themselves in a line wherever the picture was to be taken. At one point my husband said..."they look like they're doing a commercial".

...More bars in more places...anyone?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

What number are we now?

Yesterday, I couldn't wait any longer....I just had to know. What number are we now?? On the list...our adoption referral list....what number are we??? So, I called. I laughed when I talked to our agency and said "I know you get this call A LOT, but it just seems to help me get through a few more weeks if I just know..." They didn't mind one bit. So with a hoop and a holler and a zip who-rah....we're number 10!! (They didn't actually say it that way...that's my version) But can you believe it? Number 10.

With this good news...we'll be in Ethiopia in no time

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Thanks for the great ride!









We arrived home last night to a mountain of laundry to do, a yard that needed to be mowed, an excited but stressed out dog (she hates the kennel), a garden that needs to be weeded and all the junk mail we could ever want. It seems strange that our vacation is over. We have so many great memories from our trip....here's some of the funny pictures that never made our blog.

And here's to you DC...thanks for the great ride!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Not one of them is moving...


We said goodbye to DC today and said "hello" to public transportation today. We checked out of our hotel this morning and rode the metro to our new hotel across the Potomac. We wanted to be close to the airport for our flight in the morning, but also we wanted to spend the day at Mount Vernon. So we rode the metro as far as we could and then boarded a public bus for a twenty minute ride. Now...having done public transportation all week (with three children) I must say that it is incredibly cheap...BUT...not always the fastest route. We didn't mind. (I've got three...hopefully five...children to put through college - frivolous spending is not an option here).

The day was great. Mount Vernon is a neat place to go. A little out of the way but worth it. The house is decorated beautifully and the grounds sit just on the river. They had so many cool artifacts from George Washington's life. We got to see how his house was run, his paintings, furniture and even his teeth (gross...but cool!).

We fly home tomorrow and all of us have decided that DC is one fantastic place to come on vacation. I'd ask the kids what they liked the most....

...but not one of them is moving (and it's a miracle)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

It was bound to happen...








Eight days of vacation in total...it was bound to happen...it rained on us today. Not just rained, poured. Thankfully I had packed some ponchos in our backpack (the kids called them our trash bags), but they kept us dry as we walked around DC (granted we looked like the original Crayola family...) but at least we were dry.

We didn't let the rain stop us one bit today. We saw the Washington Monument (or at least the outside of it). They told us that tickets run out within hours of it opening for the day. Next, we walked down to see the WWII Memorial, Lincoln Memorial and the Reflecting Pool. As we began our walk to Jefferson Memorial, that's when the sky opened up and it rained. Still it was a beautiful memorial and worth the walk.





Finally, we decided to complete our day with time at the Museum of Natural History. There we got to see the Hope Diamond, the skeleton from every creature you can think of, minerals/gems, and an incredible 3D Ocean movie at the IMAX...way cool!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

They let us in....


Can you believe it??? They let this crazy family into the White House today (you know, the one at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue). Well, they let us in. Granted...we didn't really just go up and knock. You had to have a background check, your name on a list, and a scan performed. And then, you had to come in with an ID and only the clothes on your back (of course, you had to prove they were your clothes...just kidding...sort of). So you'll have to trust me on this on, since we have no proof of this visit...but we were there. VERY COOL! My favorite part was seeing the blue room and a funky eagle piano they had over to one side. Just being there was amazing...

Afterwards we went back to our hotel to rest up a bit (our White House tour was at 7:00 in the morning...that's 6:00 our time), and then we decided to spend most of the day at the Museum of American History. It was another fantastic museum (and all for free!!!). We got to see Lincoln's hat (the one he wore in all his pictures), Edison's light bulbs, George Washington's uniform and the Star Spangled Banner flag (the ACTUAL one they flew during the war of 1812). Of course, there were a million more things we saw but these were just a few.

At the end of the day we went into the National Gallery of Art and surrounded ourselves with some of the most beautiful paintings in the world. Wonderful....it was just a wonderful day!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Standing there in awe...










Today I was overwhelmed. Overwhelmed at standing in front of the Declaration of Independence (the ACTUAL one...you know, the one the founding father's actually wrote). Overwhelmed at reading the Emancipation Proclamation (the ACTUAL one...). Overwhelmed at just the amount of history that is at our feet in this city. The ACTUAL history...no photocopies here (o.k....that's not exactly true...there are plenty of photocopies of actual stuff...I guess they're hoarding some actual stuff in the basement). But the history is just overwhelming and so much of it is free. Free for you to go and take a look at it, read it, become immersed in it...feel it. It's incredible.









This morning we began our day with a meeting with our US Senator. It was so nice of him to meet with us. (...we even got to meet his wife, who just so happen to be there). Next it was off to the Supreme Court and a tour there. (O.k....technically, before that we took the kids back to change out of their nicer shorts and into more of a "spill anything you want on it" shorts...hey, they can only stay clean for so long). We ended our day at the National Archives Museum. It is an amazing museum, loaded with thousands of items...

...that make you just stand there in awe

Monday, June 15, 2009

And just think there's lots more to see...








This morning we had an early appointment/tour to visit the Capitol. O.k....let me start by saying "WAY COOL". The entire experience is so neat. Our group was huge but we had headphones on so we could hear the speaker clearly even as we were moving (fantastic invention as we were way in the back with the kids...as usual). Of course, even with the headphones that didn't stop us from losing our tour guide and the 50 people that went with it (chalk that one up to "only us"...).
Later in the day we had tickets to go see the House of Representatives and the Senate in session. I have to admit that having to go through that much security just to get into the area...we were literally in the safest place on earth. Privacy is not an option here.

We also walked down to the Reflecting Pool and the Botanical Garden. The kids like the baby ducks in the pool (personally, I liked the Grant Statue...).
And just think there's lots more to see...

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Just us...and a million of our closest friends

Washington is such a fantastic city. While I'm not much of a city kid, I sure am having fun taking in all of the surroundings. It's such a diverse city in culture, history and race.

Today we took the Smithsonian (castle)...(actually there are 19 Smithsonian museums in all...but today we took in a only a few). Next door they had the International Art Gallery and the Freer museum (which has the famous "peacock room" by Whistler). Next, it was onto the Museum of African Art (which made me wish I had our Ethiopian munchkins with us) and then it was onto the Museum of Air and Space.


Just us...and a million of our closest friends

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Coming up with craziness...


Well, we made it to DC with no hitches. We checked two bags (at exactly 50 pounds each...anything over and they charge you extra...so by golly, we were going right up to the max), gate checked our new stroller, kept tight to three children and spent more on lunch at an airport than I ever spend at a restaurant. Whew!!

And if our life just wasn't crazy enough as it is, we chose to take the metro into DC all the way to our hotel (which I might add we pricelined and got a fancy-shmancy hotel for way cheap...). That was a fun adventure in and of itself.



Tomorrow, just wait and see what craziness we're going to come up with.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Packed and ready to go...


Finally...we are packed and ready to go. 5 people in two bags...let me hear you say "YEEAAHHH!" people. Washington, DC lookout...cause here we come!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Our "don't forget" list...

This week has been a crazy week for us filled with packing, shopping, laundry, planning and enough "don't forget" lists to make your head spin. You see, our family vacation has finally arrived. We fly out on Saturday and are headed to the great city of Washington, DC. Our kids have been studying American History for the past couple of years and we thought this would be a great end to their studies. We are going to all the museums and art galleries. We even were able to get tickets to the White House. It's going to be a great trip!

We're going to be blogging along the way (it's kind of our test for when we go to Ethiopia), so everyone can come along with us...o.k., not literally, because I can't afford to feed you all. But at least you can enjoy the sights along with this really loud, crazy family...just don't forget your ear plugs.

I'll be sure to put that on our "don't forget" list...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

No tellin' what I'll find...

It's been 11 years and things have most definitely changed. Changed in some ways for the better...in some ways I just cannot understand. Yesterday, for the first time in 11 years...I bought a stroller. Now, I didn't want one of the "all-in-one" stroller thingys, I just needed a simple lightweight umbrella stroller. Our umbrella stroller was not going to make it on one more vacation (of course, I only paid $10.00 for it 11 years ago...what did we expect). So we began the crazy search for a reasonable umbrella stroller...

11 years ago you had one choice...basically. You didn't like it, too bad. If you were short, too bad or if you were tall, too bad. You didn't even get to choose the color. That's it.

Yesterday, I stood in front of at least 20 different kinds of umbrella strollers. I probably looked like I never got off the farm, with my eyes wide and mouth open and a dumbfounded look on my face. Each stroller offered this or that (none offered to do the laundry...or that one would have been paid for and in my trunk). And don't get me started on the amazing price differences between them. In the end, we ended up with a "middle of the road" stroller that hopefully will last another 11 years.

Please, oh please let it last...for no tellin' what I'll find in the stores then.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Any forward movement is good...

In our house all of the bedrooms are situated like this...the master is on the main level, 3 bedrooms upstairs and 1 bedroom downstairs (we have a walkout basement). We were using the downstairs bedroom as a guest bedroom, however with 3 children already in the house (and two more children hopefully coming soon), we decided that we needed to use all the space we can get.

So this weekend we moved my son downstairs to his new room. It's huge with 5 floor to ceiling windows and a large walk-in closet. He loves it. I love it, for this now leaves me with an empty room upstairs to begin decorating for the new babies. My husband likes to call this "my nesting".

I don't care what you want to call it, but with this adoption process...

any forward movement is good.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Our little soccer champ...


Yesterday was our smallest's last soccer game for the Spring season. She loved playing and especially loved that her Daddy was the coach. And to tell you the truth, my husband loved being out on the field as well. So here's to you my little one...our little soccer champ! (...hint, she has a number 6 on her jersey)


Friday, June 5, 2009

A yawn and a run...

Just recently I have switched my daily run to the mornings (instead of late evenings) and here's what I've noticed...

Alarms at 5:30 in the morning are quite irritating...no matter who's singing the tune.
My husband can just pop out of bed, while I roll and crawl my way to the bathroom.
The snooze button was a great creation.
Sprinkler systems come on whenever they want and scare the "begeebees" out of you.
Birds are out in full force (having a "bird dog" this is very much an issue for she wants to chase and point at them all instead of running with me).
There are quite a number of people going to work at that time...so...kudos to you guys.
And even if they say it's going to be 80 degrees that day...it's down-right cold in the mornings.
But to top it all off...there are the most beautiful sunrises at that time.

So for that, I'll still be out there in the mornings...with a yawn and a run.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

A "swish-swish" moment...

This morning my five year old was complaining about having to use "swish-swish" (actually called a fluoride rinse) after she brushed her teeth. "But Mom...why do I have to do "swish-swish" every morning? (in a very whining voice, mind you...) "Because if you don't take care of your teeth they may fall out." I said. She paused for a moment. "But Mom...(whining again), all my teeth ARE going to fall out." O.k., she got me there.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Filler'up...

Zoom....one kid ran past. Zoom...another kid ran past. Zoom...another kid ran past...wait...she backed up and squeezed me so tight and then...she was off again. Zoom!

I like to call this the kids "filler'up". Basically, what happens is that every so often my kids have to have a hug or kiss from me or my husband. They need to feel that love. Don't get me wrong...we love, hug and kiss on them all the time, but to them it's comforting to have hug "on the fly" while they dart away to play. It's the security that's always there for them. It's their way of saying..."sure do love you".

Now, I know that this will not last forever, but for now, if I see them zoom past and then "back that bus up" I just throw my arms open wide and enjoy the moment.

Monday, June 1, 2009

A long line of "not-so-good waiters"...

O.k....so it's June now and I'm just itching to call our adoption agency. You know, just to let them hear my voice (because it's only been a month since I've reminded them the last time). I just want to help them remember that here we are...still waiting. Still waiting for a referral... Would that be wrong?

You see, I come from a long line of "not-so-good waiters". Christmas is a perfect example. Pick anyone in my family...my little brother for instance. I had mailed him his Christmas gift a little early and FedEx had barely left the building by the time he had opened the gift and was wearing it. It was a Christmas gift! My mom...when she comes to visit, she begins counting down the days months in advance. Months, I tell you. And don't even ask me how I did when I was pregnant with all three of my kids...I about went crazy (and I had the due date!) So you see..."not-so-good waiters" here. I can't help it.

So now I am stuck...stuck coming up with a good excuse, no...a reason to call for an update on our adoption. I need a good one...

Got any suggestions???