I have not blogged since 2012. There have been so many things I've wanted to write about, but haven't found the words or the time to do it, so it's been left un-said.
But.... today is an important day and I have to say something.
One year ago today our twins were placed with us.
One year ago today, we met for the first time the little girl we would name H (although she didn't come to live with us until 3 weeks later).
We have been a family of 7 for almost a year. It's been a wild ride. An amazing year, one of those "I can't believe it's already been a year" but also "the longest year of our lives" kind of years.
It's kind of crazy how one thing completely changes the course of your life, or in this case, 7 lives. My life, my husbands life, and the lives of all of our children (including bio kids) will never be the same. And I'm so glad!
There's something about foster care and adoption that can lead to such a conflict of emotions. In one day I can feel like a hero (I'm not), a failure (pretty sure I'm not), energized by the great things I'm seeing in our family, but also completely exhausted because it's 10am AND I JUST CANNOT DEAL WITH ANY MORE POOP TODAY!
When people ask what it's like or how we're doing.... I never really know what to say. There's no way to be concise, there's no statement that encompasses all that I feel or deal with.
Is it exhausting? Yes, it's so exhausting.
Is it frustrating? You have no idea how frustrating the system can be.
Are you worried or anxious? In the beginning I would have said: Yes! I'm anxious that these children that I love as if they had come from my own body, will be taken from me and given to a stranger, to someone they don't know. I'm worried that because all my time and energy is focused on the smallest members of our family, my bio kids will suffer. (about the second part of this- the boys are fine Did they get less attention from mom? Yes, and while that is unfortunate and I'm trying to get better about that, I have watched them grow in compassion for others and it is so amazing to watch!).
Is it worth it? I want to scream from the housetops: IT'S COMPLETELY WORTH IT!
Our family in November 2014:
Saturday, September 29, 2012
This week we started "school" with Aaron. We're just doing a letter of the week and carrying that theme as far as we can : ) We studied ants, our All-powerful God, and did a little bit with apples. On Tuesday night, Aaron came down with the flu so we didn't do all of the activities that I had planned, but that's how life is sometimes. We did as much as we could.
Aaron practiced counting "apples" and putting them on the tree.
We made an apple tart in the shape of the letter "A"
Aaron's not ready for writing yet, so I just had him trace the letter "A" in flour a little bit. This is where I made a rookie mistake on Friday. Jonas needed to be changed and I thought "Aaron will be fine doing this for just a couple of minutes" Cue head-smacks. Yeah, I actually thought that.
This is the result of that thought:
what you can't see in this picture is that the flour is all over the floor too.
I couldn't keep Jonas from playing in it, so I put him in his crib while I swept and mopped the floor. Then I told Aaron to play in their room so that Jonas wouldn't be lonely. When I got done cleaning this is what I found...
Jonas wasn't very happy.
But actually I really needed to mop, so it was kind of a good thing, because otherwise I probably would have put it off... forever.
And if anyone was wondering.... I finished the alphabet plushes! I'm really happy with how they turned out!
Monday, September 24, 2012
Aaron currently loves this book:
Most nights before bed, we read out of children's bible to the boys. But I saw this book a little while ago in our church's book store and picked it up. The sub-title "Seeing Jesus in Psalm 23" intrigued me. I'm so glad I got it.
It's the story of Sammy and his friend who is a lamb in another flock. His friend is redeemed by the Shepherd (even though she is small and sickly) and the shepherd nurses her back to health while Sammy tells her about his Shepherd. The book goes through each verse of Psalm 23, explaining about the Good Shepherd in a way that is really easy for children to understand. The book says it's for kids 4+ but Aaron really likes it. He'll ask: "Can we weed (read) the shepherd book?"
This week I'm going to start doing "school" with Aaron. We're basically just going to go through the alphabet, make sure he knows all of the letters, work on counting, and do lots of read-alouds. I saw this tutorial a long time ago and bookmarked it for just this reason. I thought it would be good for him to have something in his hands he can play with, feel, and squeeze when we're talking about the different letters.
This is what I've completed so far
Obviously I have a lot more to do, but we're going at a slow pace through the alphabet (one letter a week), so I have lots of time to finish, and they don't take that long to do.
One thing about the tutorial... I am fairly sewing illiterate (or I just pick projects that are beyond my skill level, not sure which it is) and this was a super easy project! The only thing I did differently was I made my letters a lot bigger than the creators, about twice as big, but it was easy to make the pattern bigger. She also puts a magnet in each letter, but I didn't do that 1) because I didn't feel like it, and 2) because I was pretty sure Jonas would find a way to eat them.
Last Sunday, David and I did an 8K at McAllister Park to benefit the Wounded Warrior project. An 8k is about 4.8 miles.
For those who live in San Antonio, you know that there was a downpour all morning.
Yes, we still ran in it.
No they did not delay the start time.
We were literally running through shin-deep puddles and places where the water just flowed like a river over the path. Pretty crazy. Did I mention this was my first organized race ever?
Yep, here's the proof. I was going to take pictures at the race, but I realized after we were already on our way, that the batteries were dead.
So this is us. After the race, completely soaked.
But we still had a good time and we want to do more races together. It was fun and nice to do it together.
The other night daddy was out hunting, and I wanted to do something fun with the boys. So we went to the store and got some ice cream sandwiches. I'm pretty sure this was the first time either of the boys had had them.
I was shocked that Aaron stayed so clean. Jonas on the other hand.... well, that's where the real story is.
It's a good thing it was bath night!
I'm not much of an artist. In fact, I pretty much do not do any form of art ever. Trust me... you're welcome!
But I started realizing that even though art really isn't my "thing" I should at least give Aaron the opportunity to see if he likes it. I saw a couple of blogs where moms would get together with their kids and do art together and that seemed like a really good idea. And I know *lots* of other moms with kids the same age as Aaron. So we had our first meeting last week and it went pretty well! Scratch that.. for the number of kids we had working with paint and other messy things, it went awesome! I think everyone had fun : )
Everyone's art drying on the clothes line
I'm not sure, but I think Aaron may have won the who-can-get-the-most-paint-on-their-face contest : )
The final products. These are Aaron's pictures from the other day. The blue one is tempura paint (there were other colors, but I guess he really liked the blue)and it folded over while it was drying. The orange, red, and yellow one is something called "paint dough" that I made. I saw that project go differently in my head, but pretty much all the kids just made like a lake of paint, which took about 2 days to dry. oh well, they enjoyed it. The other picture is water-colors.