Posts Tagged ‘daughter’

Minor Victory in my Post Adoption Life

May 16, 2011

As I have confessed here before, my life is so much different now that I have four children.  This week we will have been home from Colombia with the Colombian princess for five months… also marking HALF A YEAR that she has been our girl.  My, does time fly when you’re having fun coping issues. :o)  But a light has begun to shine at the end of the tunnel for me.  I’m back on top in a few areas that I feel are worth sharing for my own cathartic needs.

1.  I am back to being a coupon queen.  With the aid of my son (who loathes de-collating coupon books, but loves his mama) my coupons are all up to date in the file box.  I spent about a half hour making a list and checking it twice and headed off to do BIG saving shopping at Fry’s grocery store.  When it all came down, I filled two carts (mainly because I stocked up on paper towel) and the total would have been $280, but after my coupons I paid $106.  My pantry was bare-er than it has ever been in the past four years, but I remedied that in one trip!  My children are much happier now that they see a supply of food that will last more than two days!  Nora could not believe how much stuff I bought!  And she doesn’t even understand the savings yet!

2.  My Tupperware cupboard is cleaned out!  This is almost a miracle.  When do I have time to do mundane chores like that?  Hardly ever!  But this week, with the help of the same son and my little new helper, everything blinkin’ plastic thing was pulled from the cupboard and MATCHED with its lid!  Whoa!  I know!  We filled the recycle bin twice with those containers that were partner-less.  It makes me happy simply to open the cupboard door and look at the tidiness.

3. My master bedroom closet is clean!!!  That means I finally hauled out all the Christmas decorations, wrap and bows that were thrown in there in early January!  I also went through my clothes and threw out items that should have been thrown out years ago.  I also put together a BIG bag for Goodwill.  And filled the garbage can twice!  This does not mean that I touched any of Rick’s clothes or junk quality paraphernalia.  But I did count his t-shirts….. 33.  Why in heaven’s name does any grown man need 33 t-shirts.  They don’t.  That is on the agenda for today! (Don’t tell!)

I’m feeling almost close to normal… about three minutes off.

It’s Connie’s Fault

March 30, 2011

Connie is my friend.  We’ve been friends since we were single and had no kids.  Now we have eight kids between us. (This may seem like a repeat of the last blog, but the ending is even better!)  We have many similar addictions, including but not limited to: collecting Fiestaware dishes, garage saling, loving a blue and yellow kitchen, chotshky old quilts, re-upholstering furniture, gardening, homeschooling, scrapbooking, playing games, framing pictures of our kids and she is the one who introduced me to Goodwill.  (Even before Darla!)

Goodwill logo

That’s all well and good, but Connie also introduced Larisa, my then 13-year-old non-thrift-store-shopper, to Goodwill and boy, did we have a laugh-til-you-cry time of it! At the mention of a Goodwill store, Larisa’s lips turned up a bit, like when you’re smelling a distasteful odor, but you can’t quite figure out where it’s coming from.  She had never shopped at a USED clothing store.  She was grossed out at the thought of wearing pre-owned clothing.  You would have thought we told her that we were going to pick through a garbage dump in Mexico!  So we made the most of it. (I’ll admit that I originally fostered the same feelings and lip-curling, but I had been won over by this point in time.)

We were heading to the mecca of recycled merchandise with Connie and her three daughters who were quite accustomed to shopping at Goodwill.  Larisa’s lips were stuck in the “bad smell” position.  Larisa started asking questions like, “Do you try on the clothes in the store?” (…. and the F U N began…..)  I don’t quite remember which of us gave the terrifying answers to Larisa, but we all joined in the mortifying fun without cracking a smile! 

Us: “Yes, but there are no fitting rooms.”

Larisa: “Then where do you try them on?”

Us: “You try them on over a bathing suit.”

Larisa, horrified: “WHERE?”

Us: “Right in the aisles.”

Long pause for embarrassing mental images on Larisa’s part.

Us, reassuringly, “Don’t worry, we stand close and make a circle around you so no one sees.”

Another one of us:  “Didn’t you wear your bathing suit underneath your clothes?”

Larisa: “NO!!!”

Us: “Don’t worry, we’ll get you one there, so you can try on the clothes.”

Larisa: “…. um….  ewww…..”

And we let her believe it all until we were in the store and she saw the dressing rooms.  It was priceless.  To this day, when we are heading to Goodwill, with Connie and her girls, or Darla and her girls, we ask Larisa if she has on her bathing suit so she can try on the clothes.  Bwahahahahahahaha!

Larisa has come a long way… last weekend, she wasn’t impressed when I ventured off to TWO Goodwill stores without her… on 50% off day!!!  So she jumped in the car and went by herself!  Thatta girl!

Classic Elderly Gentlemen

March 17, 2011

My daughter and I were out about town and, oh, did we have some good laughs brought on by some GREAT old men. 

We were entering Walgreens when we noticed a line at the register of four or five people… including a heavily tattooed young woman and an elderly gentleman.  The man either needed hearing aids or simply had a booming voice… which could be heard throughout the store as he commented to the young woman, “Darlin’, you’ll grow to regret them tattoos!”  Larisa and I both burst out laughing as we made our way out of sight.  I’m sure his comment and volume made that young woman’s day!  Classic!

An hour later, we were eating In-N-Out burgers in the parking lot and a silver old-school mini van pulls in towing a light green fishing boat.  The small type of vessel that holds four people on a good day, and three elderly fishermen on a sunny day like today.  Sitting in the middle of the boat was a while plastic lawn chair…. for back support, I’m guessing??  The men slowly climbed out of the van…. VERY slowly.  These men were in their 80s at least.  The tallest of the bunch exited the van and we had the pleasure of viewing his outdoor adventure attire:  camouflage pants and a white t-shirt that said “Shut Up and Fish!” on the back.  Another burst of laughter without forewarning.  Classic!

Locks of Love! <3

February 19, 2011

My daughter has not had a haircut in many years.  But today was THE day!  She has measured and waited and measured and waited for her hair to pass the needed 10 inches so she could donate to Locks of Love.  For those who don’t know about this thoughtful organization, they collect ponytails from generous donors so they can make wigs for kids who have lost their hair due to cancer. 

I was not too sure about the whole thing (as you can tell)…… but of course I supported her unselfish wish to help others.

It was so cute in the hair salon when our friend Donna got out the measuring tape, hair cutting, dyeing and manicures halted.  All the ladies, stylists and patrons alike, silently watched as her hair was brushed and put into the required ponytail before the CHOP!  After the chop happened, all the ladies in the salon cheered and clapped their hands!  So sweet!

And the deed was done.  Larisa’s hair is darling at its new length.  I’m so proud of her for thinking of others!

Plans Gone Awry

November 14, 2010

In my perfect little world, I was sending out adoption/thank you/Christmas cards this year.  They are all addressed.  Since the decline of our referral in October, I’ve realized that they will not be sent until 2011.  Another year when I don’t have the heart to send out Christmas cards.  One of our family members is missing!  How can I send incomplete family pictures?  I cannot.  And that is the end of that.  I might do an email update for curious minds and those whom we only correspond with at the time of Jesus’ birthday celebration.  Then again, I’m sure many would be thrilled to get a Christmas card that is a few months late…. that is complete.

This morning, while whipping up Grandma’s Swedish pancakes, I put in the first Christmas CDs of the season.  Not a child came downstairs that did not comment on the yule tide tunes…. and we had two extra childs too.  :o)  BUT, then Third Day’s song came on…. Merry Christmas.  The lyrics came dribbling out of the stereo of another Christmas when your child is not home.  Good grief.  This is not GOOD grief…. this is SAD grief!  Talk about killing me softly with his song!

Staying positive is my goal this holiday season.  But, for heaven’s sake, this is the FOURTH Thanksgiving and Christmas without our baby girl.  My only hope is that we get the referral before Christmas and I can hang her Precious Moments First Christmas ornament on the tree because I’ll know her birth year!  Oh please, oh please.

RSVP - Lakinzie Collector Doll

On Saturday in a hearty attempt at garage saling with my husband… I did find another Groovy Girl doll for my little girl.  It’s the little joys that keep me going right now.

A Big FAT FAIL!!!

November 1, 2010

This past week I realized that I had not gone into Zaza’s room since we declined the referral on the 18th.  After mentioning this to my husband, he suggested I venture back into the golden-yellow oasis of flowers and butterflies and tea sets and dress-up clothes.  So I did.  Bravely, kind of.  Can you be sort of brave?

To my surprise, our son Keeve had moved back in during my absence.  His trombone, music stand and he has a bag of his personal items… more commonly referred to as his bag of junk… that scooted back in there and made itself a home.  (Hey, it’s better than a bag of hair… anybody seen Fever Pitch?!?)  It is a remnant of his days when he slept in the purple bed.  It’s a huge lime green with purple polka-dots gift bag that is ripped down one side.  We simply never found a home for that stuff when he moved back into the big bedroom with his brother.  It’s a good collection of stuff too: a photo of his friend Connor’s orange cat from California, an Iron Man mask, a few magic tricks like the disappearing penny and the three red balls that turn into two, and many hockey cards, some pucks, a few cardboard guitars, marbles and twist-tie necklaces that were made while shopping in the produce section of Walmart.  Good stuff!

I’ve never understood the “closing of the nursery door” that so many childless parents go through, until now.  I get it… a teeny bit.  Nora’s picture is still standing on my desk in a pale green frame.  At first, I didn’t even want to look at it, but my husband suggested that we keep it up as a reminder to pray for her and her forever family.  She keeps staring at me.  Reminding me that we said no.  I’ve also come to realize that if we received her referral later in life with none of our kids left at home, we would have accepted it.  That soothed my soul, somehow.  We weren’t saying NO to her.  We were saying NO to right now with these three children still in our care.  That soothed my soul too…. somehow.

In the dark of the night, I admitted to my sweet husband that I feel like we’ve gone through nearly four years of adoption emotions, upheaval, paperwork and disappointment to come out with a big fat FAIL.  F!  I have felt like it’s all over now.  We didn’t win.  We lost.  Game over.  I’ve been avoiding the adoption topic in my mind for two weeks.

In reality, we just hit yet another bump in the road to our little girl.  But I’m not fully back on the bandwagon yet.  I did venture off to a new Bookman’s store in Mesa and found two full shelves of adoption books that I’ve not read yet.  (This is what I do in the adoption low periods… I read tales of successful adoptions… reminding me that orphans do get forever families…. mommies do get to kiss soft cheeks… eventually.)  I narrowed the pile to five and then to three books.  I actually found a book about a family from San Jose, California (where I grew up) that adopted a five-year-old girl from Colombia!  It brought many fears and tears to the surface, but it did prepare me a little bit more for our eventual travel… to our daughter.

Organic… Here I Come!

May 4, 2010

 My daughter, yes, the one who is driving, wrote her most exhaustive term paper this year on America’s Obesity.  I proofread it for her and was shocked at the statistics and the sad food facts about us Americans.  I was secretly thankful she did not ask me for a personal interview for the paper.  I mean, first hand interviews are legit and all, but still.  Not something I want on my resume.

About a month ago we went on a hike out in the cactus infested wilderness with friends of ours and the gal talked about all the same information for the entire hike… plus more.  Don’t get me wrong, the information was interesting and I was indeed interested.  She referred me to a book which I found at the local library (my second home)  and have read and re-read it several times now… well, at least parts of it.  The Weight Loss Cure “They” Don’t Want You to Know About by Trudeau, no, not the Canadian Prime Minister.  It’s a conspiracy theory in all reality…. and quite engaging.

Because of the paper and the book, my daughter, yes, the one who is driving, decided with me to go organic and do some cleanses… long overdue cleanses.  Never done in my lifetime cleanses.  And drink tea… special teas from Trader Joe’s that I can’t pronounce the names of.  I don’t like tea that much and I am now reminded why… they taste similar to wet cardboard mixed with weeds.  But I’m drinking them and feeling so cleansed.  My gallbladder has never felt so free.  I do enjoy chai, but of course, it’s not on the list to cleanse any clogged organs.

That inner cry for Oreos and Cheetos will hopefully be suppressed by tea and organic peanut butter….. what inner cry, you ask?  Just you watch:

We will keep you posted on our organic journey as we breathe deeply, jump on the trampoline, walk, sing, dance and cleanse.  That noise?  That’s my pancreas singing with glee.

My Girl’s Pink Dress

April 17, 2010

My 16-year-old found out about a contest called Own Your Look put on by JoAnn’s craft stores where girls ages 14-18 make their prom dress!  She asked if she could enter…. and showed me the prize list…. unbelievably, first prize is $50,000 for college.  I said, “Of course you’re entering!”     Duh!

Larisa has sewn before… but not a prom dress.  She’s made quilts, purses, funky skirts, groovy t-shirt modifications, pillows, etc.  This was one small step for man and one giant step for mankind.  So……. Day #1….a day of prom dress shopping commenced, including lunch at the mall, of course.  She tried on all sorts of dresses and she fell in love with one.  A simple gray number with one rose-covered shoulder and a high waistband.  It fit her perfectly. 

Day #2… shopping for a pattern.  This sounds all easy and fun, and it kind of was.  It was just long and drawn out and we should have gotten ice cream first… or at least some chocolate.  We did locate and purchase a pattern however many alterations would be necessary to build the gray dress.

Day #3…. shopping for fabric, zipper, thread, mask, feathers, etc. etc.  We took Grandma along that time because she took home ec for 14 years.  (haha) As soon as we picked her up, she said we should start with Starbucks!  (See why we brought her!)  We wandered around and around JoAnn’s looking for fabric in the right color and right texture.  We wandered so long that Grandma had to go sit in the pattern book section while Larisa and I wandered some more.  THEN, with the cart full of goodies, Larisa casually commented, “Mom, you know I don’t have a date for prom and I’m not old enough to go alone.”  WHAT?!?  Maybe we should have talked through this little blip before Day #3!  All was finally settled.  She needed the money for college.  We would find a date.  Turns out the homeschool prom allows girls to invite girls.  Good!  (Good grief!)

Days #4-23 were spent praying on our knees before the sewing machine.  (I’m kind of kidding.)  Larisa did a marvelous job sewing this dress!  I did not sew one blinkin’ pink thing on the gown.  All her!  And her hand beading is meticulous and gorgeous. She designed fuchsia flowers, instead of the common roses, with beads hanging out of each one.  Beautiful.  She found a fuchsia drawing online and reworked it to fit the waist band…. I am so proud of her.  She also made a mask, as an accessory for the contest.  Enjoy the photos!

The contest isn’t until summer, but believe me, I’ll keep you posted!  Did I mention that I’m so proud of her!?!

Happy B-day, Rickey!

February 3, 2010

Today is my husband’s 43rd birthday so I thought I’d share some photos of him at what he does best.  This first example is “Being Cool.”  See how he’s instructing his fine young men to be cool too.  It’s an important trait to master.  Being cool.  It’s also all about crossing your arms and pushing your muscles to look bigger than they actually are.  Being cool.  And sunglasses.  Not just any sunglasses… cool sunglasses, like the ones Rick is sporting here.  He purchased them in a women’s boutique in Sedona when the supremely awesome sales lady told him that men from Scottsdale buy her glasses all the time…. and, get this…. that he looks like Elvis.  She could have sold him bedazzled capri jeans for himself!!!  Being cool!

Here, we have Rick protecting his most valuable asset, his beautiful 16 year old daughter. Being scary, that’s what this is called.  It’s important when you have a 16 year old daughter.  Being scary.  Rick looks kind of teddy-bear-ish in this picture, but that’s because you can’t see his concealed weapon that he only shows to teenage boys. Being scary.  He has given his daughter a stack of his business cards to hand out in case any teenage boys want to talk to her.  It’s an easy out for her, “Here’s my dad’s number.  You can talk to him first…”  It hasn’t actually happened, probably because the truth about the concealed weapon has been leaked. Being scary. He’s good at it, if need be.

This is what he does best, here in this last picture of the photo tribute for his 43rd birthday… Being fun. The untranied eye may not be able to decipher it, but let me help you. See how his mouth is? He has either just said something funny, or is in the middle of saying something funny.  Being fun.  This may not seem like an all-encomposing-highly-important trait, but it is.  Being fun.  It was actually a requirement to marry into our family.  Being fun.

Happy Birthday, Rickey!  We all love you!

My Third Most Embarrassing Moment

November 16, 2008

toilet_seat_cover_paper_dispenser

I’m still not to the place in my life where I can write about my first and second most embarrassing moments of my entire life, but I CAN face my fears and post my third most embarrassing moment for all the world to read.  It helps that it is so fresh in my mind.  It occurred only last month at church.

It was a Sunday morning and the service was over.  It is a 30 minute drive home, so I decided to visit the ladies room before our journey.  I emerged from the stall and was washing my hands and visiting with another gal when one of my daughter’s friends came in and a comical, yet horrified look arose on her face when she saw me.  A bit out of the ordinary for her, but not totally surprising to me.

At that point, the other gal pointed to my backside and asked if the toilet seat cover was supposed to be sticking out of the top of my skirt….. sweet mother of Moses…. I’m SO glad she said something before I left the bathroom to have my extra appendage witnessed by the entire universe. 

BUT, I knew my secret would not be kept behind tight lips… being that it was a 15-year-old friend of my daughter who was allowed to live after being an eye witness.  True to form, I received an email the next week from the girl’s mother asking about my wearing of toilet seat covers.  She wished she could’ve been there to see it for herself.  I wish she had have been there too, because she’s the type that would’ve laughed hard enough to need Depends. THEN who would’ve been laughing!?

Thank God for friends who help us in our time of need.  :o)