Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Monday, December 29, 2008
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Since he's had a few days off work around the holidays, Tony has been giving me some much-needed breaks. Right now he's gone to get his hair cut (by our daughter-in-law at the salon where she works) and he took all three girls with him. Brave man, huh? Yesterday he went out to get me some cold medicine (came down with a cold on Christmas day), and he took all three girls with him. He made Christmas dinner, dinner again last night, and breakfast today! Last night he got everyone's teeth brushed, read stories and tucked them in bed. Oh, and yesterday when I wasn't feeling good he took care of things in the morning so I could sleep a little longer. (Did I mention that last night he was exhausted and commented on what a hard job I have?)
Of course, the girls love having daddy take care of them and do things with them. He said yesterday when he was in CVS they just followed him around in a little line, calling out daddy this and daddy that. Naturally he gets a lot of looks when he's out with them. I know I get a lot of people staring at us, so I can just imagine. It makes me smile to imagine him corralling them all in and out of the mini-van and through stores. He's such a good daddy, and he's such a great husband.
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
Friday, December 12, 2008
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Not so with our girls! Today a big box of oranges came in the mail -- a gift from our friend Pete who lives in Florida. I opened the box right away and gave them each one to hold, and Ruby was SO excited that she asked me to take her picture with her orange! She was grinning from ear to ear! Now, it's not like I never give them fruit. I do give them plenty of fresh fruit, but the sight of a big box of fresh oranges arriving at our doorstep just sent Ruby spinning. Of course, all three of them were excited, but Ruby was beyond excited! She was practically jumping up and down while I peeled their oranges!
My goal this Christmas is to keep the gift-giving small. I don't want to overwhelm the girls by so many gifts that they can't even take it all in. I hope that somehow we can maintain their appreciation for the "little things"!
Monday, December 8, 2008
Also, when Mom was visiting Nora lost a glove. We looked everywhere for the silly thing. Mom even walked the north field where we had all taken a walk, but we never could find it. That little mystery was solved yesterday too when the girls opened up the sand and water table and found the glove in the sand!
Two mysteries solved in one day. I think I can sleep better now!
So...when you're bookworm tagged, you have to pick up the book that is nearest to you, turn to page 56, and type the first sentence of the fifth paragraph on that page. So, here's mine: "Once, his rowdy entrance included a guitar, which he began strumming furiously while singing badly and demanding that the rest of the family sing along." Anyone know the book? It's John Grisham's "The Innocent Man." It's actually the fourth paragraph because there are only four paragraphs on the page. I don't read much John Grisham (more of a historical fiction and classics kind of girl), but this book intrigued me because it's Grisham's first non-fiction book. And so far it's pretty good. I'm about halfway through it.
Jaclyn's blog indicated that she is reading the Twilight series. I'm just like Jaclyn in that I initially had no interest in reading about vampires in teen books, but Gina Ellerbee's post a while back kind of perked my curiosity. Gina seems like she has good reading tastes. I still haven't read Twilight, but now that Jaclyn is reading it too, I'm getting more and more curious! I may have to break down and read it!
So, I'm tagging Linda and Lori ! Tell us what you're reading!
Sunday, December 7, 2008
I just love my mom-in-law. She visited us for a week over Thanksgiving, and we had such a great time with her. Some of you might be thinking, "Yeah, right. Mother-in-law at your house for a week is a good time?" Heh heh heh. Well, she is simply a great guest and a joy to have around.
Here's what makes her such a great guest, just in case anyone wants to take notes (just kidding I'm sure you're all wonderful guests). She is helpful, but not overly helpful. As in...she's not cleaning everything while commenting on all the dust in my house. She's easy to chat with, but doesn't feel the need to chat all the time. Sometimes she enjoys just sitting and reading in the same room as the girls and watching them play out of one eye. She goes along with whatever we're doing for the day, and if for some reason she's not up for it she just says so. The list could go on and on.
I know it's hard for her to travel so far; changing flights and layovers take their toll on anyone regardless of age. But still she has made the trip from Massachusetts three years in a row and stayed for about a week each time. Thanks Mom! We love you, and we love your visits.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Ruby has very recently started talking about her life in Ethiopia. She mentions Hutalem in the context of being her birth mother, but at times I get the feeling she's someone at Hope. I'm hoping I can find out so that if it really is her birth mother's name I can write it down so she will never forget it.
Other things she's told us recently:
"One time big girls hitting me so my mommy hit them and they go away."
"One time I walking walking walking and find money buy banana and eat eat eat. No car walking by self not far away."
"Cold outside get warm by fire and then hurt (pointing to the burn scar on her forehead)."
"Elizabeth no bottle eat here (pointing at her breast indicating her mommy breast fed her)."
"Sih mesh mah no means what is your name."
And my favorite...after telling me about "sih mesh mah no" they broke out into song. I got them to sing the song again, and here it is. It starts with "sih mesh mah no" and I have no idea what the rest of it is about!
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Today I spent the entire morning working on backdrops for the China and Ethiopia booths for the Christmas Around the World party, and then we had to go to the grocery store. By the time we finished with that it was dark outside. Fortunately, the girls begged for spaghetti for dinner. Couldn't get much easier than that!
I'm exhausted! Here are the backdrops for the Christmas Around the World party. Tomorrow we're going to the Ethiopian restaurant to get injera and doro wat for people to sample. The China booth will feature fortune cookies...because I'm too tired to do anything more complex!
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Tony is on his way to take Nana and Katie to the airport (his fourth trip to the airport in eight days. The house seems very quiet. I never thought of OUR house as quiet before! Ha ha!
The only thing we missed out on was seeing Davey and Shelly (my brother and his wife) and all of the family that were gathered at their home on Thanksgiving, including Mom and Richard. We weren't able to make it to their gathering since we made Thanksgiving dinner here at home for all of our guests.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Friday, November 21, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
When Tony and I got married, we thought our family was complete with our three sons. We had talked about having a child together, but in the end just felt that it probably wouldn't happen for us, plus we lived far away from any family. Still, we talked about what it would have been like to have children together.
Fast forward a few years, and we find ourselves living in Missouri -- very near much of our family -- and talking about adoption. Our journey to each of our girls has been such an amazing part of our lives. I'll post more later about how we were led to China and then Ethiopia, but for now I just wanted to share this great picture Tony took yesterday of me with my girls. I love them so much.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Tony had never hunted deer until last year, so this is his first one. It was an exciting morning. (Sorry Rebecca B. I know it has a face, but it's food.)
Friday, November 14, 2008
Maybe we should all take note -- America best. :-)
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Did you guess? The answer is...
My dining room table after three girls, three pairs of scissors, one magazine, and thirty minutes! Cutting up paper is one of their favorite activities. They're so easily entertained. Now if I could just teach them to use the vacuum to clean up the mess that spills over onto the floor!
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
"There are several expressions of the form sick as a ..., that date from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Sick as a dog is actually the oldest of them, recorded from 1705; it is probably no more than an attempt to give force to a strongly worded statement of physical unhappiness. It was attached to a dog, I would guess, because dogs often seem to have been linked to things considered unpleasant or undesirable; down the years they have had an incredibly bad press, linguistically speaking (think of dog tired, dog in the manger, dog’s breakfast, go to the dogs, dog Latin — big dictionaries have long entries about all the ways that dog has been used in a negative sense).
At various times cats, rats and horses have been also dragged in to the expression, though an odd thing is that horses can’t vomit; one nineteenth-century writer did suggest that this version was used “when a person is exceedingly sick without vomiting”. The strangest member of the set was used by Jonathan Swift in 1731: “Poor Miss, she’s sick as a Cushion, she wants nothing but stuffing” (stop laughing at the back).
The modern sick as a parrot recorded from the 1970s — at one time much overused by British sportsmen as the opposite of over the moon — refers to a state of deep mental depression rather than physical illness; this perhaps comes from instances of parrots contracting psittacosis and passing it to their human owners."
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
It was 10:45 in the morning and I was getting by and starting to think about how I was going to face getting lunch on the table when it involved a) looking at food and b) standing upright for more than 60 seconds.
Then I got a text message from my daughter-in-law, Samantha, saying "Happy Halloween. Hope you're having a great day." Well, clearly I was NOT, and I messaged her back saying I was really sick. So she messaged me right back and said "Would it be good if I come and get the girls and take them to McDonalds and they can play and eat?"
Would it be good? Oh my gosh, I was so happy I started crying, which really confused the girls. So now mommy is sick and crying too? Samantha is a hair stylist and Friday happened to be her day off. So my new daughter-in-law, who is 21 and has no kids (but is really good with kids), used her day off to drive 25 minutes to my house, loaded all three of the girls into my van and drove them to McDonalds (another 15 minutes away) to eat lunch, and then took them all to the park to play. AND when they came home they had all made get-well-mommy cards for me. She took paper and markers to the park for this little project.
I am just amazed that Samantha did this for me. I already knew she was awesome, but this just completely blew me away! Thanks Sam!
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Monday, November 3, 2008
This is a very different process than we went through for Nora. In China, the adoption is finalized AFTER you arrive in the country and meet your child, so they travel home with their new name (if you're giving them one) on an IR-3 Visa and are U.S. citizens as soon as you go through immigration at the airport in the U.S. Then I had to fill out a form and send in the translated Chinese Adoption Decree to the state of Missouri to get a new birth certificate.
Or adoption of Nigate and Amsalu was finalized in Ethiopia via Power of Attorney with our adoption agency BEFORE we met them. This means they came home on an IR-4 Visa and are permanent legal residents on the U.S., but we have to send in paperwork (and more money of course) to obtain their citizenship. Also, their legal names at this time (at least until tomorrow) are Nigate Anthony Smith and Amsalu Anthony Smith. Pretty, huh?
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Will you all please start a blog so I can know what's going on with you? I promise I'll read it faithfully! It's free and easy! Takes only a few minutes to post every few days once you get it set up! Please, please??? I'll tell you how to do it if you need help!
Monday, October 27, 2008
Even though we are still Pre-K, they have so many great activities that we can attend. Today was the RHE Book Club -- story time with Miss Peggy. She read two books about voting, "Max for President" and "President Pennybaker." The kids got to have an "election" where two pre-school kids "campaigned." Both kids said if they were president you could eat all the pizza you want. One little boy said, "And if I were president you can pray whenever you want." I just about cried! The kids got to make posters for their favorite candidate and go on a parade around the library. Elizabeth wouldn't get more that three feet away from me, but Nora and Ruby proudly paraded around with their campaign posters. Then they got to vote, make buttons to pin on their shirts, and have a great snack. And it was all FREE!
I love the whole homeschooling concept! And wonderful Miss Peggy is a grandmother who donates her time to this activity! She's awesome! I can only hope and PRAY that God will grant me the patience to be as good of a homeschooler as these other parents are!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
1. I’m affectionately known by my friends as “instant gratification girl.” I’m not good at waiting for things. Hard to believe I made it through the adoption process twice, huh?
2. I have a thing for cute, girly socks. I have socks with pigs on them, bumble bees, wine glasses, pugs, you name it.
Me: "No Ruby, that is your very own purse. You don't have to share that."
Elizabeth, who is waiting for my verdict while glaring at her sister: "Ruby (rolled rrrrrr here and Ethiopian accent), you not a good girl, OK?"
The other day I heard Elizabeth saying the same thing to Nora...well actually yelling it. Nora was doing her own thing in the bedroom while Elizabeth sat in the living room yelling, "Norrrra, you not a good girl, OK?" Anything to get a rise out of one of her sisters. But she's such a cute little trouble-maker!
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
THEN at almost 8:00 tonight...Beth (my step-mom and Granny to the girls) called and said "Hey, how about if I come over to your house and hang out while the girls are in bed and you and Tony can go outside or whatever." Well YEEEESSSSS! You won't find me refusing THAT offer. Beth leaves for work somewhere around 6:00 in the morning, and STILL she did this! I feel strongly that Ruby and Elizabeth, being home for only two months, need to have Tony or I here all the time. But, Dad and Beth live about two acres away so this works out great, and the girls were in bed asleep by the time we went outside.
So, for the first time since I don't know when...since before Nora came home last year. We just went outside and started up a bonfire. Then we went for a night-time 4-wheeler ride in the woods, got lost and laughed and found our way out and came home. And we just had the BEST time. It was great!
Thank you Beth, you made our night! And since you offered to do this while they were in bed, and since I was just going to be outside, I had no guilt about leaving them. Yet it felt like we were on a date for a couple of hours!
P.S. If you're reading this Pam, the only thing that would have been more perfect is you and Billy and some red cups. We miss you!
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
So this morning I was in the kitchen making cupcakes, and in Elizabeth walks with her tray (the lid to a plastic container) and some of her toy plates and says "Mommy, breakfast!" Look at Ruby's face in the picture below.
I sure am glad I don't go around cussing!