Sunday, August 31, 2008


Picture this. I'm sitting in the living room deliberately ignoring the sounds of distress, fighting, and downright ugliness coming from the family room. Camden has this annoying habit of yelling to me a play-by-play of everything going on (usually he's blaming Rory). When I heard this tidbit come from his mouth, I gave in and went to mediate: "Rory is just being E.V.I.L. to me!"

Looking Back

In anticipation of the McGowans meeting Emma for the first time, I have been feeling nostalgic and have gone back and read all of my posts from February - the weeks leading up to our trip to Korea and then my posts and videos while we were in Korea. It was such an amazing trip; definitely the biggest, most significant event in our life, and we enjoyed every single second. I think I'm ready to do it again. Well, if I had a spare $28,000 laying around. And a housekeeper.

O.N. Designs Kit #17

Friday, August 29, 2008


I am clearly a wimp. Grocery shopping with a 23 month old at Walmart and Kroger in the sticky heat seriously wears me out! Not to mention making 8-9 trips up the stairs carrying all the groceries. Oh, well! It must be done!

I cannot tell you the amount of time Rory spent in this laundry basket yesterday with an empty Mountain Dew bottle. Who knew that could be so much fun! I let Rory and Camden play in the bathtub for over an hour last night - they were having such a good time I couldn't interrupt them (and I'll do anything for some peace and quiet).

We have soccer practice tonight, and then no plans for tomorrow, which is fine by me. Saturdays are my favorite day of the week. Brian is home, and I'm not solely responsible for the kiddos' happiness and keeping the peace!

Two Camden funnies.
  • Yesterday afternoon he asked if he could go get the trash cart and move it back under the porch. I said sure and then went out to watch him while he went to get it because it's by the road. He was fine, so I came back inside. A few minutes later I could hear lots of shouting and crying, and I ran outside thinking he was hurt. Nope! Just mad at the cart because he was having trouble rolling it down the drive way so he was chewing the cart out. He finally made it back just fine.
  • This morning at breakfast he asked me how much I loved him, and I told him all the way to school and back. He looked up at me with this hurt expression and said, "but it's not very far to my school!"
Oh, did I mention it's a 3-day weekend? It's a toss-up as to who is more excited: me or Brian.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Fashion Statement

wearing Camden's clothes

Secure. . .

. . . in his masculinity

Sick Baby

Not much to share today. Yesterday was a pretty long day. Rory's nose is running like a faucet, and she spent lots of time crying as I carried her in the carrier and being miserable. I'm hopeful today will be better, but she still looks pretty miserable.

Both kids were in bed late last night, but were up at 6:00 this morning, and with the day stretching out in front of me, I decided they needed a Dunkin' Donuts run (and I needed coffee). They're happily munching away while I take a few minutes of computer time.

We had a fun experience at the grocery store yesterday. At the checkout, I saw out of the corner of my eye a woman come in the door and really smile at Camden and Rory, and I didn't think too much about it. We generally get quite a few looks and smiles when we're out. But when I turned around, she said, "hi, I'm Lindsay." I had to think for just a minute, but it was Lindsay from this blog. Now, we've never met before in person, but we have mutual friends, and she recognized Rory and Camden from the blog! It was nice to talk to her for a minute. They're waiting to travel to Russia to meet their son. This is their first child, and they've been in this process for two years now so the wait is really feeling long at this point! Hopefully, we can get together after their son is home.

Mayme and her family left this morning for China. Camden and I have already prayed several times this morning that they have a safe trip. Obviously, I'm excited for them, but I'm excited for another reason. I'm thrilled to have another adoptive family in our church and as close friends. I think it's so important (especially in the seriously white community we live in) for Rory and Camden to see that there are other families that look like ours. I'm also happy that Camden is experiencing the process. He just experienced it with Rory, and I do that helped him understand his own adoption, but I'm thrilled for him to see it again.

Rory has started to put two words together. Last week she said, "thank you, Mama" and "mama's baby". Yesterday she said, "daddy's shoes" and "down please." She has also finally started answering the question, "Who is this?" and "What is this?" Oh, and she says, "bless you" after sneezing, and there's lots of sneezing going on in this house between Camden's allergies, Brian's cold last week, and now Rory's cold.

There was no time for scrapping yesterday, but I'm hoping to maybe scrap during naptime today. And for someone who had nothing to say, this turned out quite long!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

23 Months

Six months ago today, we met Rory! I cannot believe that she is already 23 months old, and that it has been 6 months. The time has gone by so quickly. Just in case you're feeling nostalgic like me, here's the video of us meeting her. She has grown so much! I can't believe that she will be 2 in just one month.

Yesterday's hearing test was different than I expected, much more comprehensive than I thought it would be. Rory tested below normal on one test, but the rest of the tests were fine. They want her to come back in 6 months to test again. They also did a preliminary language and speech evaluation, and she tested at 18/19 months for expressive language (she's 23 months old), and tested normal for receptive language. I think we're going to talk to our pediatrician when we go for her 2 year appointment and get his opinion on speech therapy. It's hard to know if her delay is caused by learning a different language for the first 17 months of her life or if there are additional issues that would contribute to the delay.

Camden went with us to the doctor's appointment (it was a 3 hour ordeal by the time we drove there, spent an hour there, and drove home) and his behavior was excellent until the last 10 minutes of the appointment, and then it was probably the worst he's ever behaved in public. I was embarrassed and really irritated with him. I tried to remember how good he had been earlier to keep it in perspective.

We also had soccer practice last night, and I continue to be very proud of Camden. He really does listen well to his coach - MUCH better than the other kids on the team who act as if no one is speaking to them!

We do not have many plans for today other than a quick trip to the post office and then church tonight. Rory seems to be coming down with a cold, but I'm hoping that it doesn't keep her down for long.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

A Good Day

Yesterday was such a good day. Rory was just delightful, and we had a great day together. Camden came home from school in a good mood, and we all enjoyed a couple of games of Uno. Even Brian had a decent day at school. It's nice when everyone has a good day all at the same time.

Our good day didn't quite extend into the night, however. Rory has done this three nights in a row now. She goes to bed as normal, and then about 15 minutes later starts sobbing and crying for me. She has never done this before, and she does not typically do alot of crying. Each night I've tried to comfort her, but nothing works but to get her out and put her in the carrier. Not sure what is causing this, and I don't want to start a bad trend, but I'm also not prepared to leave her sobbing in the crib.

After the excitement with Rory, I was wide awake and didn't go to sleep until sometime around 2:00 a.m., so I'm a bit tired this morning. Maybe I'm still on Olympic time. In all my free time last night, I decided that I need to be reading parenting books again so I started The Strong Willed Child for about the 4th time. Maybe this time I'll actually finish it. I've also got on the "to-read" list Love and Logic Magic for Early Childhood, Creative Correction, and Parenting is Not for Cowards. I probably shouldn't tell you that I've started each of these books several times. I'm feeling determined to actually finish them this time. I think we can all use a bit of professional parenting help from time to time. One parenting book I actually did finish and really loved (and should probably read again) is Revolutionary Parenting. I'm also thinking about buying Scream-Free Parenting.

Rory's developed a new habit that is quite funny, although we don't let her or Camden see us laughing. When Camden gets in trouble and we send him to time out, she follows him and just chews him out. When he sits down, she'll put her hand on her hip, point her finger and rant away. It's hilarious, but we always stop her cause it's not fair to Camden, obviously. We're not sure where she got the finger-pointing because I don't think either of us do that.

On today's agenda is keeping the kiddos from killing each other - there have been multiple fights already. Rory is getting quite good at hitting and pinching. Any idea on how to stop that? I suspect if Camden would stay out of her personal space, it might help. We're also making a trip to Vanderbilt for Rory's hearing test. I am pretty sure that there is nothing wrong, but our doctor wanted her to have it so we're doing it.

Our prayers worked yesterday because Mayme is leaving Thursday for China. I am so excited for them and cannot wait to meet Emma. I've already decided she is going to be Rory's best friend. :) At bedtime every night, we all pray and when Rory prays (jabbers), the two distinguishable words are Emma and Amen. It's so sweet.

A very interesting thing happened yesterday. Rory and I were on the couch looking at my scrapbook pages that had arrived in the mail. I showed her the picture with her foster mother, and Rory immediately pointed to her and said, "Omma" (Korean for mama). Now, we haven't shown her pictures because she got so upset in the first couple of weeks when she would see pictures. We had planned to reintroduce her to them a little later. I was shocked that she would recognize her so quickly. I'm happy, though. I don't want her to forget.

Here are a few pictures from one evening last week.

Monday, August 25, 2008


Whew! Do you know how much energy it takes a non-morning person (that would be me) to get two children up, fed, bathed, dressed and out the door all the while trying everything in your power to keep them from having major meltdowns? And just think, next year, we get to do it every single day! I think I'm not ready for school days to start! And I don't know how your toddler is, but my Rory is not really a fan of all the ins and outs of errands and it's a job to keep her in a semi-good mood while we're in route! Before 8:15, we had dropped Camden off at school in POURING rain and got completely soaked (because I'm an idiot and didn't have an umbrella), went to the bank, get gas, and pick up coffee at Dunkin' Donuts (can I just say the Hazelnut coffee with coffee and cream already added is REALLY good!).

Rory picked up a fun habit over night. Although she is always happy to give hugs and kisses to random strangers and other friends/family (attachment issue #62), she is very stingy with her kisses and hugs to us. I am usually stealing them from her. This morning, when I kissed her, she stuck her tongue out at the last minute, and continued to do so every time I tried. Nice!

Say prayers for my friend Mayme if you get a chance. They're still waiting to hear if they get to leave Thursday for China. If some paperwork isn't processed, they may be waiting another couple of weeks. I clearly remember how difficult it is to wait for your baby, but I have the benefit of being on this side of things and knowing that it's all worth while and that the pain really does just melt away once you are holding your child.

Julie Billingsley: Apple of My Eye

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Weekend is Over

Well, the weekend is almost officially over, but poor Brian is still in the living room working. A teacher's job really never ends. I cannot tell you the countless hours he spends every day and weekend just trying to keep afloat in the sea of papers, lesson plans, and bulletin boards! I just hate that he never really gets to enjoy a weekend.

Our weekend was quiet. Brian wasn't feeling well Friday night so we skipped the football game and stayed home instead. We went to my former boss's house Saturday evening for dinner and had a wonderful time! The food was delicious, the kids played well together, and we enjoyed catching up. While I am very thankful to be a stay-at-home-mom now, I do miss working and miss my friends most of all.

Camden has school tomorrow so Rory and I will have a quiet day at home. I'm hoping to put the house back together again (why does it always look like a tornado hit it after the weekend?), as well as work on going through Rory's clothing that no longer fits.

We have a little tradition at our house that started quite a while ago. Every night at supper, we go around the table and tell what was the best thing that happened to us today and what was the worst thing that happened. Well, tonight, Camden told Brian that the best thing that happens to him are the days that he gets to stay home all day with me and Rory. Isn't that sweet? Believe me - I don't hear things like this too often from him. He is a daddy's boy all the way!

Dani Mogstad/ScrapKitchen Designs 2 Cool 4 School
Dani Mogstad/ScrapKitchen Designs 2 Cool 4 School
Lauren Grier: All the Sweet Flavors

Friday, August 22, 2008


It's sad when at age 32, you're too old and tired to enjoy a shopping trip that ends at 8:30 p.m. Who knew that was late? I was glad to get away for a few hours last night, but I was exhausted, and shopping wasn't quite the pick-me-up that it used to be! I did manage to buy several things for Rory and some new lipstick for me, so it was a success. Oh, and it ended with a Starbucks run so that's always good.

And speaking of purchases, I went through a rubbermaid of Rory's clothes last night working on what was going to the consignment store next week and realized that I just bought a duplicate shirt on eBay. Nice. I've avoided selling on eBay this year so far, but I think I might post a few things today. Since they're Gymboree and new with tags, I think I'd do better there than at a consignment store. They're things that Rory was too small for when she came home, but is now too big for.

On the agenda today is grocery shopping and a football game this evening, and that's about it!

Cherry Crush by Kasia

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Just Like Mommy

Rory went and got her doll the other day and pointed to the carrier. Doesn't she look cute!

This is the first morning this week we haven't had to be somewhere so I plan to take it easy. The floors are vacuumed, kitchen swept, laundry all caught up (I washed, dried, folded and put away 5 loads yesterday), and supper is already planned (biscuits, bacon, and eggs in case you're wondering).

If you're a scrapper, you might be interested to know ScrapbookPictures is having a sale on their prints. I printed layouts that have been accumulating since April (yikes!). I used to print every month, and that definitely helped me keep caught up, but since Rory has been home, I haven't done so well. I printed 80 pages - that's alot since mid-April!

In other scrapping news, Dani Mogstad emailed and asked me to be on her CT again. I've been a member twice now, and am so excited. She is one of my all-time favorite designers.

Camden and Rory aren't off to a great start this morning. They both woke up before 6:00, although Rory did go back to sleep for a little while. Any suggestions on how to stop the insane screeching if Camden happens to touch Rory, touch anything she might have played with in the last 17 days, or if he merely looks at her the wrong way?

I've roped Brian into taking Camden and Rory tonight to soccer practice while I escape to the mall. I'm going to maybe do some shopping at Gymboree's COF sale because you know my kids have nothing to wear this fall (insert heavy sarcasm here).

That's pretty much my day in a nutshell. Hope yours is good!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Back in the Game

Our playdate yesterday with Joy, Ellis, and Sumner was fun. Camden and Ellis ran and chased each other! I took my camera, but had put my lens on incorrectly and none of my pictures turned out (sorry, Joy!). We ran several more errands while we were out, and came home tired!

Camden's soccer practice last night was an experience! I think we have the most laid-back coach you can imagine (winning doesn't matter, we're only having fun, who cares if they understand the rules, etc.). I was so proud of Camden. The other boys on the team were very unruly and could not keep their hands to themselves (kicking each other, tackling each other, honking noses, etc. all while the coach is trying to talk), and he did not get involved. I'm not sure he'll be able to resist temptation every time, though! I was shocked to see that he was a full head shorter than the other players. They must grow 'em big in Cheatham County because he is not small for his age. We'll have practice Tuesday/Thursday evenings and games every Saturday beginning September 6 - October 26, so our schedule has suddenly become alot fuller. I'm determined to be a good supportive mom this time around and remember that he's only 5 (despite my ridiculous competitive nature).

We're all moving slow this morning, and Camden had school today instead of Friday because of class pictures so it was an early morning. I can remember that it used to drive me crazy when stay at home mom's would complain about having to get out and about. I would think, "do you know what time I leave EVERY morning?" But I'm realizing that you just have a different schedule as a stay at home mom, and any interruption or change can be an ordeal. I stopped for coffee on the way to school so helpfully that will wake me up.

I'm discovering that keeping Rory in the baby carrier means it's much harder to get anything done around the house! I do think that it's beneficial, though. I am already seeing slight changes in her.

No scrapbook pages to share. I've had no inspiration or scrapping time, but here are a few pictures from last week.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


Camden is using the word "hate" alot these days, so we always ask him to make his point another way. So here's our conversation last night at supper:

Camden: I hate it when you give me these little plates.
Me: Excuse me?
Camden: I, uh, uh, uh, really enjoy it when you give me
these little plates, but don't do it again.

Right before I fell asleep last night, I rolled over and realized I was singing, "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" in my head. No idea where that came from! I'm almost caught up on sleep. I think I've been in bed at 11:00 for the last 3 nights so late-night Olympic must-see TV must be over.

We're meeting Joy, Ellis, and Sumner at the mall this morning. I've got to run to Target and the library as well so it will be an extended trip out of the house. Soccer practice starts tonight. Unfortunately, Brian has parent/teacher conferences so I'm on my own. Camden seems really excited, so I hope he jumps right in there and does well.

Bubblegum Princess by Gina Miller
Zoobilee Zoo papers and elements by Gina Miller

Monday, August 18, 2008

Carry Me

Well, I've never been pregnant, but this is what is my version. I can't see my feet. I have to hold my "belly" when I bend over. I can hardly reach around my "belly." I have to turn sideways to get the laundry out of the washer. There's lots of poking and kicking.


Most of August's weather has been much cooler with dryer air than normal, but I knew it couldn't last. We're back up in the 90's today. Although, let's be honest here. Since Camden is in school, I probably won't be out "playing" anyway!

We had a bit of excitement around our house Saturday night. Brian caught a little lizard, and the kids had a blast playing with it. It's so funny because Camden would have been terrified by the lizard at Rory's age, but Rory was THRILLED with it. It kept biting her finger, and she would just squeal in delight. Here are a few pictures.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Enjoying Myself

I'm sitting here in the quiet, spending time on the computer, not doing too much. But I can hear Brian and the kids outside. Rory and Camden are screaming at each other. Brian is trying to play peace maker. I think I'm having a bit more fun than he is at the moment. He's such a good husband to let me enjoy a few hours of peace.

Gina Miller/Shabby Princess Fresh-n-Fruity

Friday, August 15, 2008


Camden had a fabulous time yesterday playing with his new friend Anna (age 4.5 and adopted from China). At one point as they ran by me, I heard him say, "I think we can be best friends forever." When we got in the car to leave, he looked at me and say, "Mommy, do you think I could call Anna on the phone sometime?" This is my child who HATES to use the phone and has certainly never asked to call anyone!

The repairman couldn't come yesterday to fix the air conditioning, but is supposed to be here at noon. It is still working at this point, and I'm grateful for that!

Rory and I dropped Camden off at school this morning and then went grocery shopping. I think I'm going to put her down for an early nap so that I won't have to wake her up when it's time to pick up Camden. Tonight we're going out to eat and shopping for new cleats for Camden. Soccer practice starts Tuesday night.

This morning when Camden threw his p.j.'s in the laundry basket, he told me, "Looks like you need to do some laundry tomorrow, Mommy." Thanks for the hint, Camden.

Here's a picture as we were leaving for the playdate yesterday. Don't be fooled by how sweet they look. Right after this picture, Rory pinched Camden, and he squeezed her head in retaliation.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


In the spirit of keeping things honest about how things are actually going in our lives and with Rory's transition (cause I'm usually pretty blunt, right?), I've decided to share on the blog about some changes we're making. We've been concerned for some time about Rory and her adjustment to our family. After countless hours of research, lots of prayer, and speaking with professionals, we've decided that we need to take some steps to ensure that we are doing everything possible to help her create a strong, lasting bond to our family.

I think it's not necessary to list specific behaviors or our reasons for taking these steps because they really don't matter (although if you're a fellow adoptive parent and want to know for educational purposes, feel free to email me). To be perfectly honest I'm not interested in hearing our friends and family tell us that she's fine; she's just a social baby; that we worry too much. We've heard those comments enough, and I'm tired of trying to make our case.

A few of the things we will be doing include wearing her in a baby carrier, reducing her time in the nursery, asking friends and family to redirect her back to me when she asks to be held or asks for hugs and kisses, cutting back on our outings and social situations, etc. We did many of these things in the first weeks and months after Rory arrived home, but have loosened up quite a bit recently, and we're seeing some marked changes in her that concern us as well as our case worker.

We're in the process of watching/reading Nancy Thomas's Taming the Tiger While They're a Kitten, and are finding it very helpful. I really wish we would have known about this resource before both Camden and Rory came home. I think it would have been very beneficial!

So that's where we are. I think it's so easy to only talk about the positive things with adoption and to ignore the difficulties that our children experience as their whole life changes and also to minimize how difficult it is for us as parents. The past 5 months have probably been some of the hardest in our parenting career, but we have high hopes that things will not always be this difficult.

A friend referred me to this article that I think is a heartbreaking and accurate portrayal of what happens in adoption.

A Different Perspective Print
Immense Loss; Walk a Mile in Baby’s Booties

Imagine for a moment…

You have met the person you've dreamed about all your life. He has every quality that you desire in a spouse. You plan for the wedding, enjoying every free moment with your fiancée. You love his touch, his smell, the way he looks into your eyes. For the first time in your life, you understand what is meant by "soul mate," for this person understands you in a way that no one else does. Your heart beats in rhythm with his. Your emotions are intimately tied to his every joy, his every sorrow.

The wedding comes. It is a happy celebration, but the best part is that you are finally the wife of this wonderful man. You fall asleep that night, exhausted from the day's events, but relaxed and joyful in the knowledge that you are next to the person who loves you more than anyone in the world…the person who will be with you for the rest of your life.

The next morning you wake up, nestled in your partner's arms. You open your eyes and immediately look for his face.

But IT'S NOT HIM! You are in the arms of another man. You recoil in horror. Who is this man? Where is your beloved?

You ask questions of the new man, but it quickly becomes apparent that he doesn't understand you. You search every room in the house, calling and calling for your husband. The new guy follows you around, trying to hug you, pat you on the back,...even trying to stroke your arm, acting like everything is okay.

But you know that nothing is okay. Your beloved is gone. Where is he? Will he return? When? What has happened to him?

Weeks pass. You cry and cry over the loss of your beloved. Sometimes you ache silently, in shock over what has happened. The new guy tries to comfort you. You appreciate his attempts, but he doesn't speak your language-either verbally or emotionally. He doesn't seem to realize the terrible thing that has happened...that your sweetheart is gone.

You find it difficult to sleep. The new guy tries to comfort you at bedtime with soft words and gentle touches, but you avoid him, preferring to sleep alone, away from him and any intimate words or contact.

Months later, you still ache for your beloved, but gradually you are learning to trust this new guy. He's finally learned that you like your coffee black, not doctored up with cream and sugar. Although you still don't understand his bedtime songs, you like the lilt of his voice and take some comfort in it.

More time passes. One morning, you wake up to find a full suitcase sitting next to the front door. You try to ask him about it, but he just takes you by the hand and leads you to the car. You drive and drive and drive. Nothing is familiar. Where are you? Where is he taking you?

You pull up to a large building. He leads you to an elevator and up to a room filled with people. Many are crying. Some are ecstatic with joy. You are confused. And worried.

The man leads you over to the corner. Another man opens his arms and sweeps you up in an embrace. He rubs your back and kisses your cheeks, obviously thrilled to see you.

You are anything but thrilled to see him. Who in the world is he? Where is your beloved? You reach for the man who brought you, but he just smiles (although he seems to be tearing up, which concerns you), pats you on the back, and puts your hand in the hands of the new guy. The new guy picks up your suitcase and leads you to the door. The familiar face starts openly crying, waving and waving as the elevator doors close on you and the new guy.

The new guy drives you to an airport and you follow him, not knowing what else to do. Sometimes you cry, but then the new guy tries to make you smile, so you grin back, wanting to "get along." You board a plane. The flight is long. You sleep a lot, wanting to mentally escape from the situation.

Hours later, the plane touches down. The new guy is very excited and leads you into the airport where dozens of people are there to greet you. Light bulbs flash as your photo is taken again and again. The new guy takes you to another guy who hugs you. Who is this one? You smile at him. Then you are taken to another man who pats your back and kisses your cheek. Then yet another fellow gives you a big hug and messes your hair.

Finally, someone (which guy is this?) pulls you into his arms with the biggest hug you've ever had. He kisses you all over your cheeks and croons to you in some language you've never heard before.

He leads you to a car and drives you to another location. Everything here looks different. The climate is not what you're used to. The smells are strange. Nothing tastes familiar, except for the black coffee. You wonder if someone told him that you like your coffee black.

You find it nearly impossible to sleep. Sometimes you lie in bed for hours, staring into the blackness, furious with your husband for leaving you, yet aching from the loss. The new guy checks on you. He seems concerned and tries to comfort you with soft words and a mug of warm milk. You turn away, pretending to go to asleep.

People come to the house. You can feel the anxiety start to bubble over as you look into the faces of all the new people. You tightly grasp the new guy's hand. He pulls you closer. People smile and nudge one other, marveling at how quickly you've fallen in love. Strangers reach for you, wanting to be a part of the happiness.

Each time a man hugs you, you wonder if he will be the one to take you away. Just in case, you keep your suitcase packed and ready. Although the man at this house is nice and you're hanging on for dear life, you've learned from experience that men come and go, so you just wait in expectation for the next one to come along.

Each morning, the new guy hands you a cup of coffee and looks at you expectantly. A couple of times the pain and anger for your husband is so great that you lash out, sending hot coffee across the room, causing the new guy to yelp in pain. He just looks at you, bewildered. But most of the time you calmly take the cup. You give him a smile. And wait. And wait. And wait.

--Written by Cynthia Hockman-Chupp, analogy courtesy of Dr. Kali Miller


Short and sweet today cause I'm seriously foggy from lack of sleep!

Stayed up late watching the Olympics again. Last night's men's gymnastics was a disaster. I'm not sure I've ever seen so many falls! And who knew those men are essentially wearing onesies with shorts and pants over it. I could have gone a couple more years without knowing that! At least I finally got to see some Korean athletes!

Yesterday was a warm day at our house - the air conditioning went out again. Thank goodness it came back on after a couple of hours. I'm calling someone today to come look at it. This is one of the few times I'm glad we don't own our house - someone else has to pay for repairs!

We're meeting several other adoptive families at a bounce house this morning. Camden is so excited! I've actually never met these families before, so I think I'll leave my camera at home. Don't want to scare them off by taking 100's of pictures at our first meeting! :)

Gina Miller Beautiful You elements and papers

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Olympic Fun

I read a fun blog post from Big Mama about the Olympics. She cracks me up every time.

And speaking of the Olympics, what is UP with those crazy hair clips those gymnasts wear? I remember as a little girl seeing them, and even then I knew they were not in fashion. And now, 20 years later, they're still wearing them. At least the USA team weren't wearing multiple colors!

I'm totally staying off the computer if you can't tell.

Hump Day

Okay, I've decided I cannot blog at night. I've been doing it for too long in the morning. I'm still keeping (or trying to anyway) my new computer schedule, but I'll blog in the morning.

Today is pretty normal. Nothing going on except trying to get my house back in shape. It's presentable, but I'd like to get it really clean and put together before the weekend.

Camden informed Brian this week that he loves us way too much to ever move out of our house when he's a grown up. I guess we better fix up the basement. :)

Rory and Camden both slept until almost 7:00 this morning, which was so nice! And Rory woke up and actually played in her crib for a while. Ever since our WV trip, she has been jerking awake SCREAMING at naptime and in the morning. Hopefully, this is a good sign.

Here are a few pictures I took last night. Soccer practice starts next week so Brian thought we should actually pull out the soccer ball and practice a bit.

Can we say D.R.A.M.A. Q.U.E.E.N.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Titan Game Pictures

I seriously love the Olympics, but my midnight bedtimes and 5:30 wake times are wearing me out! We're in for another long night tonight since it's almost 9:00, and the Gymnastics and Swimming hasn't even started yet!

To all my parenting friends, anyone have a BabyHawk or ToddlerHawk they'd like to part with? I'm searching for one, but trying not to spend TOO much money!

As promised, here are pictures from the Titans game.

Waiting for the game to begin
The game
I'd tell you what was going on, but I'm football illiterate
Eddie George, for all you Titan fans
Brian says Camden spent most of the game eating
or looking through the binoculars.

Brian and Camden
Lauren Grier/Shawna Clingerman - A Girl Like You

I'm off to fortify myself with Mt. Dew and popcorn and settle in for another 3 hours of Team USA and Michael Phelps.

Monday, August 11, 2008

First Day

We managed to make it out the door by 7:30 this morning, but it was painful! Rory, for whatever reason, woke up at 5:30 this morning and did the whole inconsolable crying thing again. She was pretty awful all day. I think it's a combination of being really tired and also a little bit of the Terrible Two's rearing its head.

After we dropped Camden off, Rory and I went to Murfreesboro for our final post-placement visit. We met with our THIRD social worker, and actually really liked her. She was older (a.k.a more experienced), and I felt like she had some good advice for us on Rory's attachment progress. More on that in a different post maybe. I decided that Rory was too cranky to risk errands so we came home, ate lunch, and then she slept. Unfortunately, I had to wake her up to go pick up Camden. Hence, the cranky mood for the rest of the day.

Someone from work called today with a question for me, and it made me think about how much I miss work. I miss my friends there. I miss being really good at something. It's a busy time of year, though, and I do not miss the extra stress and time I would be required to put in.

I've been trying to work on maintaining good eye contact with Rory (she really tries to avoid looking into my eyes) and I've been saying, "let me see your pretty eyes, Rory" when I give her things. Well, Camden doesn't quite get the point. I heard him today saying, "look at my pretty eyes, Rory."

Has anyone heard of Jillian Michaels? We've started on our second week of doing her Frontside work out, and we're both so sore! I'm pretty sure I haven't worked these muscles in many years!

I'm beginning a new routine tomorrow. No computer time after the kiddos get up in the morning until they go down for their afternoon nap. I want to do a better job of keeping a routine/schedule, and I'm pretty sure this will help me, painful though it might be! :)

We've got the Olympics on again tonight, and I'm really wanting to stay up and watch them, but my 4 hours of sleep last night are catching up with me so we'll see.

Camden on his way to school.
And if we needed any more proof she's a girly girl,
look at that purse on her shoulder. She INSISTED
on wearing that both times we left the house today.

2 Straws by Dani Mogstad, Shawna Clingerman, Traci Reed

Sunday, August 10, 2008


Our weekend ended on a not-so-great note. I woke up this morning with a stomach bug, which is always fun. Thankfully, it seems to be about over. Brian took Camden and Rory to his parents house for lunch after church, and stayed too late for them to get a nap. He's not quite as conscientious about nap time as I am, and we paid for it! Camden was impossible. Rory was inconsolable and cried for over an hour as I walked her around the house. Then she cried for another hour as I tried to get her to bed and asleep. Not fun!

Brian and Camden thoroughly enjoyed the football game Saturday night. Pictures to come later!

I'm blogging tonight because I'm pretty sure there will be no time tomorrow. Camden starts Mother's Day Out in the morning (thank heavens he's headed back to school!!), and we've got to leave by 7:40. After dropping him off, I'm headed to Murfreesboro for our third and final post placement visit for Rory. I'm trying to decided if I'm brave enough to face Target and the library while we're out. It's probably going to run into lunch time and nap time (didn't I learn my lesson from today?) so I haven't decided yet. Then I pick Camden up at 2:30.

I have watched two straight days of Olympic coverage and am loving it (although I've watched so many clips of him winning Saturday and Sunday night,
I might be seeing Michael Phelps in my dreams). I can't wait to see more gymnastics and swimming tomorrow night. I'm hoping they show some of the Korean gymnasts. Camden and Rory have watched some with me. Rory is so funny imitating the athletes. She's not even two, but picks up on the slightest details. After watching the diving competition this afternoon, Camden asked if we would build him a diving board. Maybe when he learns to not cry when water drops touch his face in the bathtub, we'll think about that.

I scrapped on Saturday. Wish I could have done more!

Rainy Day by Jenna Desai
Ocean Picnic collab (only available in July)

Saturday, August 09, 2008


That's the sound of relief I'm making that it's Saturday and I've had a bit of a break from the kids, housework, etc. Brian let me sleep in this morning (does 7:30 count as sleeping in?). I think it's maybe only the second time since Rory's been home that I haven't been up with her, and it was wonderful to wake up on my own. And not only did I get to sleep in, but Brian had breakfast ready when I got home, he cut Camden's hair, and even cleaned the bathroom this morning!! It definitely felt like a bit of a break to sit in my p.j.'s on the couch, kid-free (well, Rory was still around) and watch a US vs. Japan volleyball game this morning.

Last night we went out to eat and Brian dropped me off at the consignment sale. For those of you who don' t know how it works, you sell your items at the sale, and a perk of being a seller is that you get to go to the pre-sale and get first dibs before the sale is open to the public. Well, you get first dibs along with the hundreds of other people who also are there. Seriously, we pulled up and there was a line of women carrying laundry baskets wrapped around the strip mall. It was insane. I've never attended a pre-sale before, and I'm not sure I ever will again. Those women were serious about shopping! There was pushing and shoving and people sitting on the floor going through their items, crawling under the tables to get at more shoes, etc. I.N.S.A.N.E. I bought a couple of things, but it was so not worth the effort of fighting the crowd and then standing in line for 40 minutes. I was pretty shocked at the prices - they were ridiculously high for VERY used clothing. I think I'm getting a good idea of why my stuff always sells so well. My stuff was in much better shape and priced about 75% lower than most things there.

Brian is going to a Tennessee Titans pre-season game tonight with a couple of friends. I'm glad he's getting the chance to have some fun and unwind a bit. On our agenda at home is convincing the kiddos to watch the Olympics with me (or at least be quiet enough that I can hear what's going on!).

And speaking of the Olympics, the opening ceremony last night was amazing! My favorite part was the lighting of the torch and Yao Ming and the little boy walking into the stadium. It's always so eye opening to see the parade of nations and to realize just how large our world really is.

Friday, August 08, 2008


Anyone else excited that the Olympics are finally here? I absolutely love watching the Olympics, love the competition, and all the stories behind the athletes. It seems that the hype for these Olympics is even bigger than normal, and I am very interested to see more of China. We planned for years to adopt from China, although Korea has stolen our hearts now. We have friends leaving the end of this month to pick up their child from China, so my interest level in the country is pretty high. I will say that when I think of all of the world problems and poverty, it seems obscene that 42 billion dollars was spent on a sporting event. Even so, I'll enjoy every minute.

Brian had a very long day yesterday! He worked for almost 12 hours (which means I was home alone with the kids that long!), and then came home and worked until midnight and was up at 4:30 this morning. His group of 4th graders arrive today. This is his first official school year. Last year he was student teaching until November and then took over another class already in progress.

I'm participating in a consignment sale that begins tomorrow, but because I'm a consignor, I get to go tonight and shop, and I'm pretty excited about it. It looked like a really good sale with lots of good things. I'd love to find a play kitchen for Rory and Camden. And it goes without saying that I'll be on the lookout for cute clothes!

I forgot to mention in my scrapping post that I had also won this kit by Sabrina Dupre last week. You can find it here. Isn't that purple owl cute?

I managed to finish this scrap page I've been working on all week long. It is a picture of Camden on his first day of K-4 last August and then a picture on his last day of K-4 in May.