Friday, December 26, 2008

So This Is Christmas....

Who is this guy and why are you placing me here?

You said "Come here and get some candy", you didn't say I had to sit on a lap!

I'm coming down, no pictures, I want off!

For the love of God, what part of off don't you understand!

Aubriana: (You can't fight destiny. )
Lil Dude: (Psst..I've got the candy and I'll give you some if you get me OFF)

Where does the time go? My last post was Halloween and now it is the end of Christmas Day! It is so true what they say about how fast time flies, especially when children are in your life.

Everyday is something new and before you know it, your little babies are just a memory replaced by little people who can be very entertaining.

The Christmas tree was a huge hit, every night Lil Dude and Aubriana ask to go into the Formal Living Room and sit in front of the tree and I count to 3 and click the remote and the lights go on - the think it is magic and the look of awe at the lights and ornaments is just priceless.

This is the scorecard so far for holiday traditions:

Santa Statues in the home/A hit Live Santas in red velvet suits with artificial facial hair/A flop

Thanksgiving turkey and pumpkin pie/A hit Christmas Lamb and pineapple squash/A flop

Eating lots of sweets during the season/A hit Taking professional Christmas Photos/ A flop

Opening more presents than you can count/A hit Taking down the decor next week/A flop

It was awesome to experience Christmas through their eyes, I can remember feeling that excitement and delight at the wonder around me, and not only did it trigger deep memories for me, but seeing their joy was even better.

My holiday cards will go out, but I hope everyone celebrated the holiday with good food, warm homes and love all around you.

Best Wishes, Valerie

Monday, November 10, 2008

Another Family United.....

My dear friends Erin, Bob and Mollianne celebrated their long awaited Gotcha Day for their precious Meisey. The journey is but a memory when you finally reach the amazing destination. We are so happy for all of you and can't wait to welcome you home in 11 days.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Trick Or shame in begging for food.

We went to several Halloween Events this season, here are a few pictures from the various venues.
What's this? I must touch you to see if this is really happening!

I thought we cleared this with wardrobe; we were supposed to be the only Peter Pan & Tinkerbell couple appearing tonight.

There is a crowd gathering; act natural.

Security, these imposters need to be escorted out.

Be careful of this one; her wings are unusually large.

I don't have a problem with it!

Can't we all just get along?

NO! I want all the candy. It's mine all mine!!

These glow sticks taste funny.

Hand over your candy and nobody gets hurt.

Hey, I'm a knife swallower; somebody call my agent.

You lookin at me? YOU LOOKIN AT ME???

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hats off to you!

Today marks six months since Aubriana was placed in our arms for the first time. How is that possible when there are days that seem to take forever to get through but the weeks and months fly by? She is such a joy to us and she andLil Dude have so much fun together and have developed a total monkey see monkey do relationship.

I have always loved babies in hats, but the kids refused to indulge my fashion ideals and all head decor was quickly ripped off and thrown to the floor repeatedly. On a recent shopping trip I found a couple of adorable hats and refusing to accept the current economical crisis we are in, I caved and purchased each child a skull warmer.

We have found if we clap and praise their individual good looks with extreme enthusiasm, they will allow the hats to stay on for 1 or 2 mintes - that is progress people. The pictures say it all, babies should be born with hats on in my humble opinion.

Something is on my head - what is it?

It's still there, do you see it?

OMG, here is another one, they're everywhere.

A little help people?

For the love of God, it's fusing into my skull.

I'm too sexy for my hat.

Take the picture or the hat gets it.

Hey, they're clapping, I may leave it on for a second or two.

Gosh, my adorability factor has gone up.

Seriously, I look like Spanky from the Little Rascals.

Monday, September 22, 2008

These Shoes Are Made For Walking

Last day of summer playing with the hose.

"Born to Sweep"

Zoom in and compare the foot shape of Lil Dude and Cinderella

There is no ankle bone connected to the leg bone, the whole song fails for us at this junction.

I have something I can no longer deny; in fact....I have two. They seem to be everywhere at once and and suddenly disappear from sight. The technical definition is:

pe·destri·an· n.: A pedestrian is a person travelling on foot, whether walking or running.

They are a totally different breed from the previous version I had for a short time, the original Version 1.0 LOB (Loaf Of Bread) soon followed by the adorable upgrade to 2.0 CAW (Crawling at Will), but this latest upgrade is not nearly as "user friendly" as the previous programs were.

This upgrade of 3.0 WAW (Walking at Will) is much harder to grasp. This upgrade has many obstacles to overcome, such as easy access to dangerous zones and restricted sites. This program seems to increase it's velocity with use and suddenly you have high-speed connections where once you were in a dial up wasteland.

Once this upgrade has been installed (apparently something pre-programmed with the original system) there are software support programs which are mandatory to supply or the program will function erratically.

One of these software options are proper socks and shoes. I have always had rubber soled socks on the babies, but now with their new found mobility, the time came to have them officially and properly fitted for their first true working shoes.

We took on this task the weekend before school started a word of advice, this may not be the best choice for shoe shopping with little ones. We tried several shoe stores before finally finding an available sales associate at Payless. I just wanted to know their true size for a proper fit.

We strolled the kids into the store and the gentleman held the measuring device up to Aubriana and said she is about a 3 1/2; she will be out of a 3 pretty quickly but isn't quite ready for a 4; her width is average.

Then we focused our attention on Lil Dude aka, Big Foot, Clydesdale Baby, Jimmy Dean All Boy Beefy Sausage Feet.

His feet are actually one of my favorite body parts on him they are so kissable, squeezable and malliable, I find myself massaging them while he is eating in the high chair, kissing them at pajama time and reaching back and tickling them while he is in the car seat.

On a certain level I am aware they are very chunky feet, but when a shoe professional emits the words "Whoa, those are some thick feet and I've never seen an arch that high", I looked around to see what poor child was afflicted with the Elephantitits condition and was a little taken aback to realize it was my sweet boy.

Lil Dude was officially labeled a 5 1/2 almost 6 and wide. So, armed with that information, we started to try shoes on. I had the Cinderella story being acted out right before my eyes. Everything we put onto Aubriana was an easy perfect fit, her delicate little feet worked with every style we tried. But the role of the "ugly step-sister" today was being played by Lil Dude and this poor kid couldn't even squeeze those meat blocks into those plastic androgynous vinyl "What a Croc" shoes everybody wears with the rounded feet and rainbow of colors.

The gentleman at Payless directed us to a more upscale establishment where he said they may have more extended sizes for hard to fit children. I am still adjusting to the expenses one incurs with all things related to children. The gasping upon discovering the purchase total is less audible than it once was when I pay for diapers, medicinal supplies, bibs and socks...but shoes!!!

These shoe prices exceed anything I pay for myself on a regular basis; and I know I will have use of my shoes for years - not weeks. I went into Nordstroms, Stride Rite and some other Children's Boutique and the prices were between $35 and $65 a pair. We are talking about itty bitty shoes not even the length of a dollar bill; does size EVER matter?

I just couldn't bring myself to spend this kind of money on baby I visited an old friend, Marshalls, and walked up and down the toddler aisle trying to find a wide shoe in a 5 or 6. Apparently the guy wasn't kidding, finding a wide is not an easy thing in baby shoes....suddenly I noticed that two or three brands offered "W" but they didn't look big enough to get on Lil Dude's tug boats....then I saw it, the only one of it's kind in the entire store...a 5 1/2 "2W". I didn't even know they made "double wides" in baby shoes. I may be able to contact distant relatives who have personal knowledge of double wide trailers; but this was a revelation to me.

I optimistically looked at the price tag $14.99; that seemed downright affordable after being stung by the $50 stickers earlier in the day. The final test; cuteness factor, would Lil Dude look like a circus clown? They are definitely "ok" and I know beggars can't be choosers - so I bought them and took them home to see if they would properly encase Lil Dude's soles.

The first thing you notice is that these are not so much shoes as blocks, almost rectangular in shape. If they still bronze baby shoes, I have to have these things cast just as a great conversation piece and possible weapon in case of and illegal break in to my home.

2W or not, these suckers weren't going on Lil Dude's launch pads without a struggle and some lubricational assistance. The thing that struck us was his immediate regression from a smooth and self assured walker to a Frankenstein/Forrest Gump/friends don' t let friends walk drunk sort of approach.

He definitely looked like his meds needed adjustment. We decided to give him time to become accustomed to walking on blocks and I am happy to report that as of this posting, Lil Dude has mentally connected his shoes with the freedom to roam outdoors and in malls and restaurants.

This latest breakthrough moment has me thinking of the future and shopping for training bras and athletic supporters....Lord, give me strength.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Is this a copy or the original?

I find myself trying to remain an "impartial" observer when it comes to my children. I don't want to judge them based on my past or pre-conceived ideals of what a baby should behave like. Who am I kidding here? I am totally partial to my past experiences and pre-conceived ideals of everything and that is my daily struggle. How does one ascertain if their children are simply showing you their individual personas or playing you like an old fiddle and manipulating musical mayhem from your tired strings?

I have been noticing since turning the big "1" that these little angelic beings have started to take on a personality and individualism that is both awesome to witness and a little sad to watch the rapid disappearance of the previously innocent lumps of lovable, soft, non-partisan flesh diminish a little bit every day.

What used to be enough to enthrall and engage is now passe and yesterday's news. Gone are the days of throwing down an empty water bottle or handing them a wooden spoon and hearing glee in the air and smiles as wide as their cheeks would allow; they've been replaced with looks of disappointment and boredom and are enough to send me scurrying to find the next "it" toy to replace the uni-brow of disdain in hopes of receiving a slight curvature of the lips in the upwards direction. I feel like a comic, constantly trying to create new material to cater to a fickle audience who strongly resents hearing yesterday's jokes and doesn't even want to comply with the club's 2 drink minimum.

Living with young children is like cohabitating with xerox copies; let me explain, if you take an original and make a copy and then a copy of that copy they are the same but if you really look closely the image is a little bit different from day to day, because a copy grows by 2% every time you hit the "GO" button . Kids, like copies, are constantly evolving and changing a little bit every day physically and mentally, and what was great today is an apocalyptic disaster the next.

I remember a few years back spending the afternoon with a friend and her then 2 year old. The child was holding her mother's car keys and rubbing them along the front of her new front loader washer and dryer. I was appalled at such behavior and naively inquired "Are you going to let her do that?!" The look she shot me said volumes, and she quietly replied "Just wait, you will allow that and more when you are a mom." I laughed, secretly thinking "Not me - my children will be controlled and "Walk The Line"; my deep apologies to Johnny Cash, but his lyrics obviously didn't apply to toddlers.

My standards have been tested, pushed and ultimately have succumbed to the dual forces of two little people not yet able to utter a word. The relentlessness and determination to do what they feel they must do is exhausting and aggravating and sometimes so funny you can't stop laughing; i.e. the time we were getting them ready to go to the mall play area, and both simultaneously decided it was a good time to cry for NO APPARENT REASON - and just fed off of one another for 15 minutes straight, inconsolable they were. My husband and I just started to laugh and could not stop. It was the hysterical laughter one might hear in asylums; the laughter that is really tears and frustration posing as laughter to try to maintain some control and order to infuse sanity into an insane moment.

While bathing our son, my husband and I were commenting on how beautiful he was. At almost the exact moment we uttered the words, it was like some sort of computer chip implanted deep in his brain alerted the program to exhibit opposite behavior. His sweet face morphed into some sort of play-dough shaped configuration where his nose crumpled up into his eye sockets and his mouth, normally shaped like a sweet bow, was suddenly an egg shaped ovalesque stretched opening which encased a tongue which appeared to have grown by half and I saw deep into his esophagus as he emitted a scream that would scatter locusts to the wind. WTF???

My husband and I stepped back from the tub....I looked at him and said "Do we need an exorcist?", but as we were discussing how to get a hold of "Soul Busters" we heard giggling. Apparently Lil Devil was pleased with himself and had hit the "reset" button on personality and looks.

Not to be outdone, our sweet and "soft-spoken" Aubriana, has evolved and learned that if she whines in a distress tone, her brother gets an immediate shout out of his name and told to cease and desist any behavior that may have offended our little angel. I have recently noticed her do this when nothing was actually happening to her at the time she sent out the SOS call; unless she is exhibiting a testing of the Public Alert system, she seems to be "tattling" on brother, simply because she can.

It is fascinating to observe human beings emerging into themselves. We seem to come pre-loaded with strengths and weaknesses and I am hopeful as a parent I can engage and coax out one and try to tame the other through nurturing, but just as my mother and hers before her, you can only do so much and the individual will follow his/her own path; all you can really do is love them.

As hard as the baby stage is (and it is hard) I find it bittersweet that it's visit is such a short one. The milestones are wonderful to experience, but it is sad to be needed less on a daily basis. I used to have to hold the bottle in order for the liquid exchange to take place, now I am simply allowed to assist. Food is no longer something I have to guide into their mouths with the fork, they can do a fine job of getting most of it in their mouths and even in their ears and hair - thank you very much. Even when walking, which is a fairly new talent for both of them, my hand is shaken away as they show me they can do it without my assistance.

I know they are young and there is much work to do, but it seems like the job of a parent is ultimately to make yourself obsolete, to the extent that your children don't "need" you but rather want you in their lives.

I am probably getting way ahead of myself here as they are only 13 and 14 months old. I was just going over our personal evolutions of the past year and I have changed in so many ways myself since their arrival, some of those changes were voluntary and others forced, but change is always ultimately good for each of us.

I will continue to pray for guidance and strength to do what must be done, and polish my mother armour nightly before entering the "arena" to repeat the day all over again. It is the same yet different from one day to the next and that is the comfort and mystique of motherhood.
The irony of this story is my original thought several years ago "My kids will walk the line", upon truly listening to the lyrics, it is I who walk the line, in hopes of being the mother they deserve and already believe me to be.

Here's to a new and different tomorrow.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Happy Birthday Aubriana

A birthday letter

Dear Aubriana,

I find it hard to believe that you are 1 year old. You have been a part of our lives over 3 months; in some ways it is "only" three months, but in my mind you have been my daughter forever.

I always wanted a little girl, and my yearning for you started decades ago. In May of 2005 when we officially decided to create our family through adoption, I allowed myself to love the idea of you; the years spent waiting for you caused that feeling to deepen.

We named you, we spoke of you and we planned for you. Almost three years to the day, we met you and the space in my heart reserved just for you was filled with such joy and love and knowing immediately we were meant to be mother and daughter.

Here is what I know about you thus far, you are gentle and sweet; giving and kindhearted. You show empathy when you see others in distress. You are a great eater and generous with food and toys, you are a sound sleeper and look like an angel when you sleep. You only cry when there is something wrong. You are studious and thoughtful about all things which cross your path. I believe you are very intelligent and will achieve whatever you set your mind to.

I wish I could have been with you from the moment you took your first breath and shield you from any hurts or pain that may have come your way.

On this day my thoughts go to your birth mother and what she must be feeling today. Wondering about you and how and where you are. I want to tell her how grateful I am to have you in my life and promise her that you will always know warmth, security, family and love.

Families are created in God's time and design; she was meant to deliver you to this world and I was destined to guardian you through it.

Be secure in the knowledge that you are thought of and loved by all of us lucky enough share our life paths with you.

Happy birthday my little love!

Endless hugs and kisses, Mommy

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Moment Of Silence Please

There has been a passing that I feel compelled to share with you.

It bares a moment of remembrance, reflection of what once was and respect for a life well lived, but sadly, no longer viable.

I speak dear friends, of my former life; my life B.C. (before children). A life in which I took great pleasure in perfecting certain aspects which had a need to be expressed and which I dutifully tried to comply with over the years.

I freely admit I am somewhat of a clean freak and like(d) my home to be "company ready" at all times. We are talking hard dusted furniture, spot free glass and mirrors, floors vacuumed daily, mopped know the type.

I would not only keep it clean and neat throughout the day, but somehow I also had time to sleep in, shower and groom like a lady and lunch with friends. My dog was well cared for and thin and had an air of happiness and contentment.

That life, like a large kidney stone....has passed, slowly and painfully.

My home, once my point of pride and joy has slowly become a carnival fun zone. Where once there was order and cleanliness now lies all matter of plastic paraphernalia in such offending colors they prompt one to wish away their gift of sight.

I knew B.C. (before children) this was but a chapter in my life and when we became A.D. (after diapers) I would have to make some adjustments and sacrifices.

ha, Ha, HA; fool that I was, I thought I could donate a small portion of the home to the children and they would be happy and satisfied with my generosity. Let me walk you through my home as it stands now.

Enter the front door, please try to avoid the rainbow colored blow up pool filled with 200 multi-colored plastic balls (precariously close to my Grandfather Clock filled with fine china collectibles).

As you pass by the Master Bedroom take a quick peak and notice the pack n' play set up right in front of my dresser and radio/cd player (music does soothe the soul, but I don't miss it ~ much). It would be nice to have easier access to my bra and panties, but I don't mind, really.

Our tour takes us to the family room/kitchen area, the very heart of the home, take a moment to appreciate the primary colored foam mat that lies straight in the walking path to the backyard and points beyond - out in the yard there is a 10 foot round pop up pool, which in the extreme heat serves the dual purpose of an extremely large pot for poaching eggs for like a convention or something similar .

Re-foucs on the family room, there are toy boxes (bright blue with Old McDonald themes on the sides) and laundry baskets filled to the rim with toys (all of which require many, many batteries). All of my stainless steel bowls, which were once used to create culinary cuisine to make your mouth water, but now are relegated to annoying noise makers which may or may not be used in the future to wake people out of a vegetative state.

They are right next to the toddler climber/slide which is indoors due to the Texas heat, the hernia from sliding it back and forth throughout the day only hurts when I laugh too hard.

There are many stand alone toys with the name Fisher Price and Leap Frog on them, more batteries please.

Look across the room to the triple decker mantle which soars 20 feet to the ceiling, anchored by a cozy fireplace; what, you can't see it? Squint a little - it is behind the changing table and diaper pail, nothing says fresh and clean like a pail of poop.

Hidden discretely behind the la-z-boy rocker recliner #1 is a lovely plastic bin filled with pajamas, wash rags, mismatched booties, bibs and towels. The chair directly across from that is hiding a beauty of an exer-saucer which collects dust and samples of my skin like it was destined to do so.

You look thirsty, come into the kitchen where the counter tops are filled with baby bottles, teething tablets, child pain relievers and large cans of formula. Oh, look another plastic bin filled with toys, and a walker which nobody really walks in, but it matches the two high chairs which are a great barricade from reaching the dining table and the computer station.

Come upstairs for a minute, but make sure to check out the laundry room which is now open 24/7 for all your laundry needs, and on the counter, next to the sink are not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4 (four) diaper bags.

Beyond that is the garage, in addition to collecting Swarovski Crystal and fine china teacups I also have acquired a need to have multiple strollers, what a coincidence, now that I think about it I have as many strollers as I do diaper bags, isn't that strange?

OK, we got off track let's head up the stairs, as you top the stairs there is a wonderful feature, a cat walk, but wait, what is that near the railing, is it another stand alone, primary colored musical toy, tsk tsk, how did that get there?

The nurseries are filled with many objects of teething comfort and stuffed animals, books, books, books - how sweet! It is hard not to notice that none of MY things have made their way into the children's designated areas - isn't that interesting?

Come to the game room, what the heck is that? That isn't a 10 feet long 3 feet wide outdoor clubhouse with linking bridge and look out tower is it?

I've seen New York apartments smaller than that thing. How quaint, the once comfortable and welcoming reclining sofa/love seat now have a game table (once used to entertain and enjoy friends with for hours on end) shoved up against it.

I guess the lesson to be learned from this eulogy of my life B.C. (before children) is simply this:

B.C. ~ Before Children/ A.D. ~ After Diapers
Pasta w/garlic sauce and wine /Macaroni and Whine
Disposable income /Disposable diapers
I sleep like a baby /Like the baby to sleep
What to wear for dinner /Wearing dinner
Tire has a blowout/ Diaper has a blowout
On time/ Time out
Pillow talk/ Baby talk
Too much time on my hands /Too many hands on my time
Family is love /Love MY family

I have been grappling with merging my past life with my new and "improved" one. The thing is, they really can't co-exist. I have to let go of what once was to embrace what now is. I had a good run, it was fun and there are many fond memories, but now is the time to let it go, maybe one day we will meet again, in a couple of decades when the children leave the nest.

I will lay down my old friends Mr. Clean, Lemon Pledge and Windex with Ammonia "D" and dear, sweet Hoover. You were all so good to me, and I will always appreciate your hard work and dedication, but now is the time to enjoy my second childhood.

The babies and I will write our names in the dust and laugh at the food we find on the floor. One day, the square footage of my home will be obvious and visible to all, but today is not that day.

I bid my old life a fond farewell, I hope to see you in my dreams and recapture what we shared for so long. One day we'll meet again and perhaps rekindle what we shared together, until that time...I wish you well and hope you enjoyed our special time together.

Time to say goodbye.


Saturday, July 12, 2008

My Little One Year Olds ~

Today was another day of professional photos for the wee ones, this is the first time we had their pictures done together. It is a lot harder to wrangle moving babies with growing individual personalities then when they were pre-crawling proto-plasmic infants; my hat is off to photographers everywhere.

The beach scenes were done in the mall window and I think this was distracting, particularly to Lil Dude, who unleashed a love of the lime-light heretofore only reserved for the likes of Paris Hilton, Madonna, and Britney Spears. He was definitely "ready for his close up".

Speaking of Lil Dude, he has a new do I put this delicately...he has "found himself" and not in the spiritual sense so much as the physical sense.

I knew this day was seems to be a point of fascination for all of the male species...but he is so young and innocent in my eyes.

Needless to say this has become a new "NO TOUCH" zone in my home and elicits the same sign language and voice commands to stop unwanted behaviors, like pulling the bone out of the dog's mouth and playing with electrical wires.

I know it is like telling the wind to stop; but for now, I will continue to redirect as much as possible and offer every primary colored toy, array of electronic doo dads and large amounts of cash and candy to preserve his innocence and distract him from his new "friend" as long as I can!

Sigh, I thought he was different than the other boys.

Enjoy the pictures!


This is no way to travel, I flew home from China in Business Class.

The people in the mall like us....they really, really like us!

If we put our heads together, we could figure out a way to ride the waves on this ridiculous thing.

This guy is a glory hog, I can't work under these conditions!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Story Of Lil' Dude

Hi All,

This post is long overdue and almost a year in the telling. Many people have asked me about our son, heretofore not acknowledged and only recently referred to as " Lil Dude".

Our original intent when we started the adoption process was to adopt twice from China; our thoughts were, we are "older" parents and having a sibling that also happened to share the same birth country would enrich our children's lives and give them something significant in common with one another.

Needless to say, over 3 years ago, this dream was a possibility, but then the China program started to shift, and the wait time lengthened dramatically and requirements changed which eliminated the chance for us to going back for a sister for Aubriana.

The wait became so unbearable for us, that I started to investigate alternative avenues to create our family. In 2006 alone, we applied and lost out on 6 different adoptions, both locally and abroad. It was a very low time for me.

In 2007, we participated in a program to host a 9 year old boy from the Ukraine to be his advocates to try to find him a family in the USA. I had never entertained the idea of a son before, it was always going to be two girls from China, I had their names embroidered on Christmas stockings, I knew they would be about 2 to 3 years apart in age and that would be my life; when you plan your life, God laughs.

This boy arrived, speaking no English, he had the Russian equivalent of my name, Valiery and my mother's birth date; he was cute, and smart and we fell in love with him. We decided we would alter our plans and adopt this boy and then go to China for a younger sister....but again, God had other plans.

The program turned out to be riddled with problems and all of the host families that tried to pursue the adoption of our little wards were turned away. Adoption is a journey that can be friend and foe. I was heartbroken, but the miracle of this child's footprint in my heart was to open my eyes to the possibility of being a mother to a son.

On June 27, 2007 I received a phone call from a local agency we had contacted earlier in the year, who once again told us our file had been selected by a birth mother. She was due in late July and wanted to meet us. This time, we were extremely cautious, no more going out and buying everything for a new baby, only to return it all a week or two later.

We were scheduled to meet her 5 days later and see if we were a fit for one another. God, giggled again, 3 days later we got a phone call at 10:00 pm, the agency informed me that the birth mother had gone into early labor and for us to get down to the hospital immediately!

My head was spinning, there were 1,000 emotions running through my mind, exhilaration, shock, dismay, fear, unworthiness, insecurity; you name it, I felt it. My identity had become that of a person WAITING to become a mother, not of actually being one. I was shaking on the way down to the hospital, it was exactly like I was watching myself in a play as we walked down the corridors of the hospital and met a complete stranger, who would bestow and entrust to me the greatest gift one could ask for, this woman, created a family that night and made me a Mother; there are no words.

I watched a child come into the world, as the nurse wrapped him in a blanket and asked who was to hold him first, the birth mother looked at me and said, "She is the mother", and I was handed a beautiful baby boy.

There is a saying that God is in your first and last breaths, I never fully comprehended that until I witnessed and held this pure life in my arms. Due to our ongoing China adoption and this being a domestic and local adoption, I have not been free to acknowledge or share our amazing gift.

The short version of it is, we got our referral and traveled to China for our long awaited daughter, and ended up with virtual twins, only a month apart in age; God must be laughing out loud at me juggling the things for which I did not plan, but in his infinite wisdom set into place the stewardship of two of his precious children for me to care for, teach, learn from in return and to adore them as they in turn fill my heart with love. I will not post his name, due to privacy issues which are a part of domestic adoption, but now proudly introduce my first blessing from heaven, "Lil Dude".

Sunday, June 1, 2008

First Professional Photos - Too Cute!

Hello Everybody,

We just got back Aubriana's first professional photos....and I had the hardest time choosing - she is so photogenic and looks so intently at the camera; I need more wall space! This is mainly a visual post, please indulge me; after nearly 3 years we can't get enough of our little princess

"You want me to just sit here?"

"Let me just come over to you"


"Do you have any Cheerios?"

'This is my red carpet over the shoulder look"

"I get the feeling people are always watching me"

"When God made me, he was just showing off!"