Friday, February 28, 2014

Two Birthday Girls

We're in birthday season!  Happy Birthday to Kim and Lizzy!
Kim, you are such a bright light in the world. I have loved you since before you were born!  You bring incredible joy and laughter to our lives!  Happy Birthday! 
And Happy Birthday Lizzy!  You are so much fun and so filled with a zest for life!  Love your empathy for others and your ability to enjoy and embrace life! I love that for your 21st birthday you chose to go to a Blazer's game with Dad! 

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

This Tenderhearted Girl Needs a Loving Family

This little girl has been waiting for such a long time--waiting for her forever family!  Is that family yours?  Click the link below:

This Tenderhearted Girl Needs a Loving Family

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Paul's New Digs

We've been doing some painting around here.

Paul decided it was time for a bedroom re-do and some bright colors!  One wall is purple (the paint color is called "where red meets blue"--I love fun paint names!).  Two walls are bright white, and one wall bright lime diamonds.  Not colors I would choose, but it turned out great!  We also added a black loft bed--couch underneath and bed on top.  He likes his new digs! 

Love Youtube tutorials!

Friday, February 14, 2014

The Best Valentine's Gift

It's been a wonderful Valentine's Day.  Hubby gave me some beautiful flowers and chocolates.  I used to tell him not to buy me flowers because I thought they were a waste of money.  But I've learned to appreciate his love language--which includes purchasing beautiful bouquets on special occasions.

I am reminded of my dad last year.  He was just out of neurosurgery and had been diagnosed with terminal cancer that very day.  But his biggest concern was that he couldn't get to the store to buy a Valentine's gift for my mom.  He wanted flowers--roses--that were pink and red and beautiful.  And a big box of chocolates.  The clerk was probably wondering why I was crying in the check-out line. 

It gives me a new appreciation for true love.

This year several of the kids had set candies out on the counter with little post-it notes.  So sweet.

But wanna know the best, most precious Valentine's gift?  A sweet card from Mei Mei. 

Remember my little girl who was so terrified of me that first year home?  She wouldn't come near me and wouldn't even let me sit by her.  She hid from me and cried when she was alone with me.

One year ago she finally reached the point where she wouldn't move away if I sat down next to her.  She was making progress and finally got to the point that she would touch me--as long as I didn't initiate the contact.  She liked being near me and talked to me non-stop.  Baby steps.

About six months ago I thought she really wanted to be able to reply to my "I love you!" at bedtime.  But she didn't seem to be able to make the jump.  I actually made her say it the first time because I really felt she wanted to, but couldn't.  And now I hear her sweet response unsolicited.

And now?  She likes to cuddle--sometimes.  She's still a bit stiff.  She's doesn't quite believe that she can really trust me.  But through a lot of patience and love, she's learning. 

It's been a long road.  It's not easy to attach to a child who does not like you.  In the beginning there was a lot of "fake-it-until-you-make it."  I knew (and learned to accept) she might never learn to trust me.  That was a hard realization, especially since there were other women she openly loved, like her grandma, aunties and teacher.  But I continued to be patient. 

It's been two years of taking extra time to reassure her while allowing her to move at her own pace.  Two years of finding ways to encourage attachment.  And finally, finally, I've been seeing some big gains. 

And today was a incredible pay-off.  This card, given with a shy grin and a big hug!

It says:  Happy Valentines you are wonderful mommy and you help me a lots and you so sweet and pretty mommy.  Love you from Mei Mei. 

Love is a lovely part of life.

Wishing you and yours a happy Valentine's Day! 

Monday, February 10, 2014

The Great Snowpocalypse

Hello!  Heeellllooooo! 

I miss writing here.  And I'm not sure what's causing the writer's block.  My new job?  42,000 kids?  The loss of my father?  Going into full blown organization mode?  All of the above?

And yet, I've always loved to write and share--in the best and worst of times.

So, I don't know.

Certainly, life is busy.  But it always has been.  And forever will be--even when I try to slow it down.  I've struggled trying to slow down--reading lots of books on simplification and I've tried to leave space in the day.  But you know what?  It's not me.  I'm a "fill the margin" girl.  And instead of fighting it I'm embracing who I am--I don't stay so busy because I think it's the socially acceptable awesome thing to brag about.  I don't stay busy because I'm pushing away grief--although I know that does sometimes happen.  It's just who I am.  I've always been that way.  My whole family is that way!  I'm just a person who loves action.  I've been going and doing since I was born.  And it's okay.  It's okay to be busy

My busyness just hasn't shown itself in blog posts!  BUT I've been catching up on a WHOLE lotta things that have been put on the back-burner the past few years.  Painting and organizing and redecorating.  And taking care of kids and cooking dinners and doing laundry and loving on those around me.  And I'm homeschooling now (part-time-one-kid so it doesn't really count but still . . . )

Anyhoo, I'm back.  I missed this part of my life.  I love working through thoughts and sharing life with all of you--and creating a written history for my family.

We've been surviving a HUGE winter storm here now termed the great snowpocalypse.  Canceled school and even canceled work--when it snows here the city shuts down!  Makes for some fun snow days!

Hope you are all enjoying the winter season! 
P.S. When it snows, put pants on.  You will be much warmer (my kids have not yet learned this).