Friday, February 27, 2009

A question.....

This is for those of you out there that sew, do you have any suggestions for an inexpensive basic embroidery machine? I don't want anything fancy, just something that will let me do monograms and simple designs.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

"Desiree needs"

I saw this on Rebecca's blog and thought I would give it a try...

You google your first name and then "needs" and see name the first ten things that come up.

I was honestly surprised to see so many for my name.... I only put seven because the other's were a little well, a little uh, non family friendly.

1. Desiree needs a family that will be patient with her and able to help her adapt to her new home

2. Desiree ~ Needs a vacation with pictures, videos, personal blog, interests. (very interesting!!)

3. Desiree Needs Everyone

4. Desiree needs to be vindicated and at the ...

5. Desiree needs to sleep soon

6. Desiree needs to stay busy

7. Desiree needs help

Monday, February 23, 2009

My First Bloggy Award!!

Yea!! Can you believe it, almost two years of blogging and never an award. But hey, don't feel sorry for me because here it is, my first ever, and it is from a very good friend of mine Julie.

Julie and I have known each other since 2006, yep that's a long time, We "met" in our June 2006 LID yahoo group while she was paper chasing for Liam and me for Hope. I felt an instant connection and can't thank her enough for all the support she has given me through the years. One day girl we are really gonna have to get together!!
Now here's a little bit about the award. (just in case you wanted to know)
"These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find friends and be friends.They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships will be propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly- written text into the body of their award.""These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find friends and be friends.They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships will be propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly- written text into the body of their award."
Now, I have to tag eight people to receive this awesome award.
Well I can't tag Julie so So here goes;
Jutta over at The Pepper, the Pixie and the Hurricane. I will be forever grateful for your friendship!! Wish we still lived close enough to get together and not just talk once a week on the phone!! Miss you!!
Stef at Chinese treasures, even though we haven't met you are a true friend. I hope you get your LOA soon!!
Kim at Hannah's Family Fun, without you we wouldn't have been able to get our paper work done in time for Gracie's adoption!! Thanks so much for your part in that. (and for being a friend!!)
Tami at Sea Glass and Jade, wish we could have moved your way!! Love your blog and praying for your referral for you soon. Thanks for all the prayers support through out Gracie's adoption!!
Connie at Mommie 2 4 treasures, love, love your blog and beautiful pictures. You are wonderful person.
Jeanne at Abigail's blogspot. You are a true friend. I miss you girl!!
Tracie at 3 Gifts, Thanks for being a friend!! (and letting us use the infamous back pack twice on our China Journey's!!)
and finally last but not least Stephanie over at Ni Hao Ya'll, I have never met you but I think you are an inspiration to us all!! You always take the time to answer sometimes silly questions form new mom's even though you have a house full yourself!!
I could go on and on. I know I have left some very important people out but I wanted to respect privacy. So, know that you are high on the list but not public!!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

An Update of Sorts...

We have good news and bad news, but could be good news if you look at it a certain way...

So, I took the kids to register for school and found out that there is no room for Caleb at the designated school. OK, forgive me for ranting but how could there not be room for a child at a certain school when we are homeowning tax payers?? They want to bus him to a different school about 10 minutes away....

Well, I said no, that wasn't acceptable to me, so I am foraging into the unknown (to me) home school world. Caleb should do very well, he is smart and I think I can get it done. (prayers would be appreciated as this is very new to me) We did fill out the online application form and were approved pending my diploma submission. The other kids were admitted, no problems. We took them to get the physicals and required vaccinations and they start on Monday.

We also heard from our realtor. (who is awesome btw) and we hope to close on March 3. A whole week sooner than expected!! Yeah!!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Not much going on....

We are still waiting in our teeny tiny apartment, our house closes on March 10. Oh how I wish it could be sooner. I am also still waiting on the kids' new school to call and set up orientation. The boys won't have any problems, nothing to do, pretty standard. Hannah on the other hand will need to meet with a counselor and set up her classes. I would also like for her to get a tour of the school so she knows where she'll be going. The little ones are doing OK, at least they were, now they seem to have some sort of evil stomach bug.....If you are on face book ,you probably saw my post about the exploding diapers.....enough said!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I interupt this wordless wednesday for an announcement...

We got the House!!!! This will be our home, almost 4000 square feet of new memories coming soon!!
Special thanks to our ever patient realtor Mary. If you're in the DC area and need someone to help you she's the one to call.

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, February 9, 2009

So much to say...

However, I haven't really felt like blogging for awhile. We have been in VA for about a week. I started looking at houses right away, the problem, there are not many in our price range and the ones that are are usually bank owned or short sales. This means we are literally fighting with other for one house that usually needs work.....
I am a little surprised, with this amount in MI we could have gotten a rather large new home. (ie, five bedrooms, four baths, finished basement and closer to work for Kerry) Here we are getting an older home, four bedrooms two baths and about an hour or more drive for Kerry to work.

Now don't get me wrong, I love it here in VA, but I wish it were a little more affordable. In the mean time the kids are still out of school, we are still in a temp. apt with only two bedrooms and I haven't found a good speech person for Grace....

Not all is doom and gloom though. We did go to DC yesterday and had a great time. We decided after not being able to fins a parking space to use Kerry's from work and hop on the metro. (train) I loved this. The big city feel and all seven of us together. Fun times!! We walked about 5 miles total with me carrying either Grace or Hope most of the time. We saw China Town, Lincoln Memorial, World War 2 Memorial, Smithsonian Museums and a bunch of other things. What was supposed to have been a 2-3 hour trip ended up taking all day.

When we got home we celebrated Hope's 4th birthday with a princes cake I made. Now keep in mind this isn't the art piece I had been hoping for. I have none of my supplies in the apartment and baked this with one pan (yes, I had four layers and one pan= four different cakes total time 4 hours!!) But, I made it work and if you don't look to closely it is OK. Hope loved it. The cake was chocolate swirl with homemade strawberry filling. Yum, if only I could have tasted it but it wasn't gluten free. The kids and Kerry said it was good but sup sweet.

So, that was our first week in VA. We are still waiting to hear about the house we bid on. I believe there are many offers and the bank will decide to take the highest or wait it out until they get a better offer. We did offer more than what they were asking but still don't know what will happen. If we don't hear anything by tomorrow am we will be out looking again. We must have a signed contract in by Thursday this week. So, if you think about it, please say a prayer for us.....

Friday, February 6, 2009

Need some prayers here...

Well, we are in VA finally and have been looking at house for awhile. The problem we could afford a really nice house in MI but here in DC not so easy. We have tomorrow, Saturday only to find a house. Please pray that we find something affordable and in a decent neighborhood for the kids.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Important Stuff...

I borrowed this from another blog I read every now and then. I thought it was important, something every adoptive parent should read. It is a good thing to be prepared. Had I not read a million different books before adopting Hope and Grace, I would have been terrified. They were both grieving so much and did not respond to us for days. Anyone planning on adopting should be well educated.

Letter posted by Amy E. of Love Without Boundaries

"I most definitely wish there was a way to educate ALL adoptive parents about the truths of institutional care, however I have come to realize in my daily work that just as many parents are not online reading everything they can find on adoption as are reading.There are hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of parents out there who have no idea what life is like for a child in an orphanage, and who head overseas to pick up their "China doll" only to be handed a baby who is unresponsive, thin, unable to eat...and on and on and on.While adopting my son last month, I walked several times over to the White Swan (Hotel where parents stay in China) to talk to parents, and over and over I spoke with moms and dads who had no clue whatsoever about the issues their kids were having.I heard so many times things like, "she won't eat solid foods" (oral aversion), "she has no muscle tone" (muscle atrophy from lying in a crib all day), "she won't smile" (pure grieving from being taken from her foster mom).I guess since I live China 24/7, I assume everyone adopting does, too, which is not the case.I was trying to process how many parents get all the way to China without ever reading about post-institutional issues.It was sobering to me.Babies in the NSN (non-special needs) as well as the SN (special needs) path can have issues with attachment, motor skills, emotional issues and more.Again, I am often surprised to talk to parents leaving soon and to realize they are not prepared. One family was adopting from our foster care program, and when I told them that the child was DEEPLY attached to the mom,the father said, "guess she might cry for an hour or so then?"An hour or so? She had been in foster care for over a year!I tried to explain that this little girl was about ready to lose everything she had ever known, and that they should not expect her to be sunny, happy, and full of personality after an hour.I told them to please remember the 72 hour rule.......that after 72 hours they would probably see her spark, but that she would probably grieve for a long time after that as well.I think for many adoptive parents, they just don't want to read the "bad stuff", and so I do think that ultimately it is the parents who are at fault for not doing more to educate themselves.There certainly are books galore out there about post-institutional issues.I think adoption from China is very similar to giving birth.. it is much more rosy to only read the happy stories on APC (another website for adoptive parents), but I now encourage every family I meet to read the harder ones as well.It is always a very sad day for the orphanage and everyone involved when a child that they know is absolutely fine, but perhaps thin and grieving, is returned by their new parents for being "delayed".I think far too many people believe their child's life is going to begin the moment they meet them.The truth is, and everyone must realize it...a child's life is going on RIGHT NOW in China, and all of their experiences are shaping who they are.The one thing I have learned over and over again about the kids in China is that they are fighters and survivors.But for some reason, people seem to want to ignore these issues in public forums.Recently, one of our medical babies that we had met several times in person was adopted, and we all knew that this child was a "spitfire".When the family arrived and spent a few days with her, they decided she was too much of a handful for them and they wanted to disrupt.She absolutely was not what they expected.I think all of us, who do realize that delays occur and that babies can usually overcome them, should be these children's advocates by continually trying to educate new parents on what to expect in China.By helping them be better prepared, we just might help stop a disruption in the future.I love Chinese adoption with my whole heart, and it is my life's work…but I also want every family who goes to get their baby to go with their eyes open and to be as emotionally prepared as possible, for the child's sake."

Amy E-Love Without Boundaries"

Monday, February 2, 2009

Pictures Finally!!

Not much to report. I took the kids, yes all five by myself no less to explore a little and get some lunch. We had to, five kids, two live animals and a two bdrm town home, well you get the picture, we needed to get out. Tomorrow we are going to go out with our realtor and attempt to find a home. I say attempt because I am taking the kids while Kerry is at work. I'll let you know how things go...

Anyway, I know you all have been waiting for the pictures from the trip down, so here they are.

And that about sums it up. We did stop in a very, very teeny tiny town in PA, I didn't take pictures but wish I would have, we had so many people stare at us when we walked into Wen*dy's. I have to say it was far worse than when we were in China adopting the girls....
Maybe they don't see many large families there....

Sunday, February 1, 2009

We're here!!!

We made it to VA safe and sound. The area is very pretty and I think we'll like it here. The trip down was very interesting, Gracie managed to cry the last hour and a half. When I mean cry, I don't mean a soft whimpering, I mean a full out scream. This child doesn't do anything quietly, I don't even think she knows what quiet means. I do love her to pieces though, wouldn't have it any other way. It did make for some stressful times for Kerry while driving.

I have loads of pictures from on the way down but no Internet until Monday other than DH's laptop. I don't think he would like it if I loaded 100's of scenery pictures onto his computer.