Sunday, August 28, 2011

Do you know what this is?

This is a big brother leaving for college.  This is how much his sisters (especially) and brother (a little!) will miss him.  This is LOVE.

I've read and heard many times of people who are interested in adoption but worry about how it will affect their biological children.  This is a picture of how it will affect them.  They will be loved and adored and they will love and adore in return.  I've seen no greater love in my life than the love my bigs & littles have for each other.  

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Do it Anyway

I love this!

      People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered.  Forgive them anyway.

            If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives.  Be kind anyway.

            If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies.  Succeed anyway.

           If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you.  Be honest and sincere anyway.

            What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight.  Create anyway.

            If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous.  Be happy anyway.

            The good you do today, will often be forgotten.  Do good anyway.

         Give the best you have, and it will never be enough.  Give your best anyway.

         In the final analysis, it is between you and God.  It was never between you and them anyway.

-this version is credited to Mother Teresa

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Back to School

The middles (and Ryan) started back to school on Monday.  Here are the obligatory 1st day of school pictures.

Allie's first day of 3rd grade:

 AnnaClaire's first day of 1st grade:
Brady's first day of 1st grade:

and Coralie's 'you got the camera out so you must want a picture of me' picture:

I almost didn't post them because...well, they stink.  I usually take first day of school pictures on the front porch, but the sprinklers were running and I literally had 2 seconds before we had to leave to drive to school, park a mile away and hike to their classrooms before the bell.  So the steps were a quick option 2.  Not a really good option now that I see the ginormous shadows, but I guess that's more operator error than the location.  I just wasn't blessed with the photography gene-either getting a good shot or actually remembering to take pictures of important events.  We were at the beach last week.  I took 2 cameras and about 14 pictures.  None of which were on the beach.  Actually, I think all 14 pictures were taken in the room.  Seriously.  I need help!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Guess what???

I have good news. :)  Here are a few hints...

Any guesses?  

We've been cabled!!!

It took 12 days, which is above the average and I may have a few extra gray hairs (and enemies at the NVC) to show for it.  We also received the .pdf of the letter by email so we were able to send it to our agency.  They said they will be dropping off our DS230 tomorrow and our Article 5 will be picked up August 31st.  After that, we will officially be waiting for TA.

I still have so much to do!  

Sunday, August 14, 2011

School? Already???

Funny how our wait for LOA seemed to take such a long time, but in actuality the summer flew by.

Yesterday Brandon headed back to college.  Last year we helped him take all his stuff up to campus and took it all up to his room for him.  This year he headed out on his own while Allie sobbed and I wiped away a few tears.  Why do they have to grow up so fast?  It seems that we were butting heads over 2nd grade homework not too long ago.

 Tomorrow the middles (With six kids, we had bigs and littles.  Now with Coralie and Cecilia added we have bigs, littles and middles.) and Ryan start their school year.  We went on Friday to meet AnnaClaire's and Brady's teachers.  In typical fashion, Brady buzzed about his classroom touching everything and AnnaClaire stood silently with her head down in hopes no one would speak to her.  It's hard to believe they are starting first grade.  They were my babies just yesterday.

Where the kids go to school, they have Primary and Intermediate schools.  Primary is K-2 and Intermediate is 3-5.  That means Allie will start a new school this year and won't be at the same school as AnnaClaire and Brady.  That's like a big fat exclamation point on the fact that she's growing up.

So right about the time that I finally convinced Coralie that it's okay to get more than 10 feet away from me and play with her siblings, they'll be gone.  All day.  I'd drown my sorrows in some chocolate but I also start my diet tomorrow.  Yep, I like to torture myself all at once.  That's just how I roll.

Friday, August 05, 2011

Birthday Pictures!

I was just headed to bed and decided to check my email one last time just in case we got some birthday pictures.  Jackpot! 
 This is the exact same look I get when I eat cake...Yummmm...

 Yeah, this cake stuff is alright...
 Cake is pretty much a favorite around here, too, baby girl.  You are going to fit in just fine.  :)  LOL at the little hand coming in from the left.

Thursday, August 04, 2011


We are moving right along and I am so excited.  Our USCIS officer was out of the office all week and won't be back until the 8th.   I thought that might cost us some time but another officer was working on our officer's  caseload and she approved us today-16 days after mailing!  Not bad.  Now we wait to be cabled.  Hopefully that will happen in a week or so.  As exciting as it all is to make progress, it may not matter that things go quickly for us due to the way our agency travels.  They travel in groups the last weekend of the month.  With the first of October being a holiday, the September group will go early so we can't make that group.  With the trade fair in October, they may not send a group so we'd have to wait until the end of November (shoot me now).  I really hope we can go the end of October.  That would put us meeting Cecilia on Halloween.  I hate to miss Halloween with my littles but there's nothing more important right now than getting CeCe home with us!  We are getting closer!

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Right now in China...

there is a beautiful little girl turning two years old.  It's the morning of August the 3rd in China and Miss Cecilia is now TWO!  This is the first time we've missed a birthday that we've known about.  We had Allie and AnnaClaire home before their first birthdays and we were matched with Brady and Coralie shortly after their birthdays and had them home before the next.  We sent CeCe a birthday cake through Ladybugs n Love so hopefully in the next few days or weeks we will have some new pictures of her.  If nothing else, we know that she'll never have another birthday come along that she isn't celebrated.  Next year she'll be surrounded by family as she opens the way too many gifts that she'll receive.  We love you, Cecilia Faith and we wish you were home to celebrate with us but we know that you are right where God wants you to be today and we find comfort in that.  Enjoy your cake, baby!