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Friday, May 30, 2008

Warehouse sale

Here are a few pictures of the clothes I bought at the warehouse sale this morning. Things were so cheap! I paid $5 for shirts and skirts, and $7 for dresses, and $10 for the coat.

Finally Friday

God must have known I’d rant and rave for days after experiencing life in the Lewis household yesterday if I hadn’t already said in the blog I wouldn’t, so in keeping with my new no complaining rule, I won’t. But, let me just scream say OH. MY. STARS.

As I think about what my next paragraph should be, everything I can think of is complaining about yesterday. Oh, boy.

Okay, here’s this. Last night at bedtime, we’re all (well, minus Brian) on Camden’s bed doing our regular routine, and I prayed that I would be more patient, not lose my temper so easily, that Camden would speak kind words, etc. When Camden prayed, this is what he said: “Lord, please help mommy to lose her yelling temperatures.”

I think the consensus is that the picture of Rory is from her 100 day celebration in Korea, so she is approximately 3.5 months old. This picture is significant for several reasons. I’m happy that Rory will have something from her infant stage. I’ve thought many times how difficult it might be for her to basically have lost the first year of her life. It also shows me that even though she wasn’t with the foster family yet and was still in the orphanage, they cared enough about her to have this celebration and take this picture. And, selfishly, it means so much to me to have a picture of her as a baby. I’ve tried to picture it in my head, but she was even more beautiful than I imagined. I found some information on the 100 day celebration. Here’s what it said.

“In Korea, on the 100th day after a child's birth, a small feast is prepared to celebrate the child's having survived this difficult period. If the child is sick at this time, the family passes the day with neither announcement nor party, for to do otherwise is considered bad luck for the infant.

At this time the samshin halmoni is honored with offerings of rice and soup in gratitude for having cared for the infant and the mother, and for having helped them live through a difficult period. The family, relatives and friends then celebrate with rice cakes, wine, and other delicacies such as red and black bean cakes sweetened with sugar or honey.”

In other news – we have a new red leather sofa! I’ve always wanted not only a leather sofa, but a red leather sofa, and I am so excited that we were able to find one used on Craig’s List that was in excellent condition for a really good price (I won't tell you how much because then you'll feel bad about how much you paid for your new sofas LOL). Now I’ve got to start thinking how I want to decorate this new family room we’re putting together. On a seriously impossible small budget, of course.

Because Brian's schedule got rearranged a bit yesterday, I didn't make it to the warehouse sale, but I'm headed there this morning. Brian says to stay gone as long as I want, and I just might take him up on it.

Our 11th wedding anniversary is tomorrow so Brian's parents are going to keep Camden and Rory for a couple of hours while we go out to eat and see a movie. I cannot wait!




Thursday, May 29, 2008

Baby Rory

The earliest picture we have had to date is when Rory was a little over a year old. Today I got in the mail a canvas, framed picture of her as a baby. I have no idea how old, but she is definitely younger in this picture. It made me cry. It's the first picture we have of her where she seems like a baby and not already a toddler.

Sorry for bad quality. I had to take a picture of the canvas, and the canvas is textured so it didn't come out well.


Mama, part 2

So, not complaining, but you know how I mentioned that Rory is now calling me Mama? Well, she runs around the house yelling it CONSTANTLY in this high pitched squeal.

Pretend

Camden and Rory yesterday "pretending" they were having a picnic outside with their snacks (it was cold and rainy).

It's Thursday

I feel like all I do is complain on the blog, so I'll try to keep it to a minimum, but all the whining and general crankiness is getting to me! How long should I expect it to take before Camden realizes his sister is not going back to Korea and this is his new normal??

This is not related to Rory, but Camden's newest gripe is meal time. He's become more and more used to all the "good" food that he was getting at school. You know, cheetos and oreos for snack time, chips and ice cream for lunch, etc. He was able to choose not to eat his vegetables or meat or bread. Well, every meal time he throws a hissy fit and complains and says, "but I didn't want that" (imagine this in a 4 year old whiny voice). So this morning after I had got up early, made coffee cake for breakfast and he complained yet again (despite the fact he loves coffee cake), I told that him it's too bad that he'd chosen to not eat breakfast and sent him to his room. He wasn't happy. We'll see if missing a meal changes his attitude toward what I cook. Oh, yeah - and that coffee cake? Tasted like dirt, and we threw it out.

On today's agenda is a family trip to the grocery store. Brian is having lunch with the other 4th grade teachers at school and then having dinner with a friend in Nashville tonight (isn't he quite the social butterfly). In between lunch and dinner while Brian is home, I'm going to a warehouse sale. Doesn't that sound fun? It's a children's brand, Coco Bonbons, and they're selling their Summer and Fall 2007 lines 70% off. Hopefully I'll find some cute stuff that I couldn't otherwise afford!


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Back to the grind

We put both kids in bed at 7:00 last night, and they slept in this morning. It was great! I've decided we have a new rule in the house. No kiddos allowed up until 6:00. I mean, seriously, it's ridiculous to have them up so early. It's too early for me to function, and it makes them cranky and ready for their naps much too early in the day.

Today we're just getting back into the grind of every day life. Rory is Miss Cranky Pants as she adjusts back to home life. Hopefully, she'll settle down a bit. Brian left for a "meeting" this morning (he calls it a meeting; I call it leaving your wife behind to unpack, do laundry, and entertain over-stimulated kids while it's cold and rainy outside!).
I got up at 6:00 and by 8:00 had already showered, did a quick pick-up of the house, washed a load of laundry, vacuumed the house, checked email, emptied the dishwasher, fed the kids breakfast (does dry cereal count?) and started to unpack.

I just took both kids outside to put something in the mailbox (how sad it was probably the highlight of their day), and Camden told me that he "planted God's creation and then covered it up with dirt." I think he meant the tree branches he "planted" because he thinks he can grow trees from them.

The best quote from the weekend was when he told my Grandma, "I just love this house. It's so full of love and joy. I love it; I love it; I love it." Where does he come up with this stuff?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Pictures

Here are a few pictures from the weekend (in case you don't have hours to spend looking at those monster slideshows in the previous post). My pictures are having blog-quality issues again, but you get the gist of it.

Now I'm going to go crash on the couch since I just spent the last 3 hours uploading pictures!









Trip recap

I'm going to post a ton of pictures (probably family will be the only ones interested in these since there are LOTS) in several different slideshows. It was the easiest way I could think of to get lots of pictures on here.

We had a great time - it was very busy, but good. We spent Sunday afternoon and evening with my grandparents on my dad's side, and also got to see my uncle. Monday morning we left and headed to an indoor picnic (since we had storms and serious rain) at my aunt's house on my mom's side. We had lots of fun. Camden really had a blast. His two second cousins were there, and they played and played hard! Rory did really well with all the people. She was clingy and a little anxious, but not so much that we couldn't enjoy ourselves.

Monday night we went to my other set of grandparents with my parents, Micah, Becky, and their boys. I was thinking on my way home today how lucky we are to not only have such great immediate family, but to have such a wonderful extended family. It is truly a blessing.

I think Rory was happy to get home. She headed straight for her toy box and played for an hour and a half all by herself!

This is Brian's first week home from school, and it's very odd to not have plans. Well, Brian wouldn't say we don't have plans. He still has his church job and definitely will be working this summer not only at church and to get ready for his new class and the new school year, but his schedule is pretty flexible. It's kinda nice!

And now, for the pictures. I'm just going to apologize ahead of time - there are way too many. But I knew family would want to see them, and I did start off with 285, so I cut it down quite a bit if you can believe it. There are a couple that I'll put in a separate post since they're pretty darn cute, and deserve their own space.




















Sunday, May 25, 2008

Mama

I forgot to mention one very important thing: Rory is finally calling me Mama. She's been pointing to me for a long time now if someone would ask her where I was, but she is only just now calling me Mama.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Happy Memorial Day (a little early)

We're going out of town for Memorial Day to meet family. This will be our first road trip since Rory's been home. She is still not too fond of the car seat, so I'm hoping it won't be too traumatic (a.k.a. LOUD) for all of us. She usually takes a 2.5-3 hour nap in the afternoon, and the plan is that she'll sleep during the trip, but we'll see. I'm curious as to how she reacts to being out of her own environment and with lots of unknown people. She's such a social butterfly, she'll probably have a blast. I know that Camden will have a great time. My dad is bringing a couple of his horses along, and there are lots of aunts and uncles and cousins to give him plenty of attention.

Brian is now home for the summer, which is already helpful. He's been so relaxed the last two days now that his big responsibilities at school are finished. His interview went well on Friday, and they offered him the job right then so he will be at a new school in the fall. It's about a 15-minute commute, which is a little further than where he was, but that's not bad. We're hopeful that he can stay at this school for a long time. He's still teaching 4th grade, and his classroom is next to his mentor (she is also moving to this school).

I was able to have some kid-free time today. I went to Nashville and ran some errands alone, and it was so nice! Brian took the kiddos and ran a few errands himself, fed them lunch, and got them down for naps. I watched the movie August Rush tonight, and it was really good. It starts slow and gives alot of background and details that I thought were unnecessary, but in the end, it was really good. I cried the last 15 minutes of the movie. I'm so emotional these days. Mayme says having a girl is turning me soft. It might be true. :)

I'll be back Wednesday with lots of pictures.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Last day of school!

We've had fairly quiet days around here. Well, not quiet exactly, but uneventful. It's going to be quite an adjustment for Camden to not be in school every day surrounded by his friends. He keeps asking us when he's going back to school. We've spent alot of time outside since our days have been so nice, and they both really enjoy that.

I took a late walk with Mayme last night and didn't get home until 8:30. The walk was so good. I needed the exercise and really needed the adult conversation! The result, however, was that I was wide awake until well after 1:00 a.m. I'm such a night owl, although I really try not to stay up too late because, ironically enough, my munchkins are both serious early risers. I did get to sleep until 6:00 this morning, which isn't too bad.

Today is Brian's last day of school. He actually finished up yesterday, but he has to pass out report cards this morning, and then he will be officially done. He has an interview at another school this afternoon. His job situation is up in the air for next year, so we're concerned, but not overly concerned. I'm so excited that he'll be home for the next 2 months!

I have several pictures to share. I pulled out the camera yesterday while we were outside. Rory just cracks me up. She immediately goes into "cheese" and posing as soon as she sees the camera, and these are the first pictures I took.


Smelling flowers. I know - if you didn't know better, you'd think she was just making a weird face!

Camden and his sidewalk chalk creation


Thursday, May 22, 2008

Tragedy

I'm sure most everyone in the adoption world has heard this news by now, but my heart has been so heavy ever since I heard the news last night that Steven Curtis Chapman's youngest daughter, adopted from China, was killed in the driveway of their home. You can read the full story here. It's so hard to imagine this situation and the pain and grief that must come with it. Steven Curtis Chapman's organization Shaohannah's Hope provided a much needed grant to help bring Rory home, and he has done more than any other single person to promote and fund adoptions. I am certainly praying for them today.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Wednesday

We survived the first day home together, but barely! Camden was definitely in a rotten mood and difficult all day. Rory was clingy because she's used to having me to herself. Rory has taken a 3 hour nap every day for the last 3 weeks until yesterday. Yesterday's nap was only a little over an hour. It could be due to the fact that Camden kept calling out from his room (during his "quiet" time), "Is it time yet" "When can I have a snack?" "Is Rory up yet?" I think it's just going to take a little time for everyone to become adjusted to our new schedule.

Our meeting with the caseworker went really well. She said Rory is doing very well and for the development checklist, she only had two things on her list that Rory isn't doing, and the list was for a 24-month old. I think I talked her ear off. Hey, it was adult conversation!

Today is already off to a better start. The kiddos both slept until 6:30, and woke up in good moods. They're actually playing together right now (GASP!). I need to grocery shop, so it should be an adventure with both of them. We've only taken both of them once, and Brian said never again! If we're going to have anything other than peanut butter sandwiches for supper, though, I better venture out.

Here are a few pictures from yesterday.

Does she look relaxed or what?

Both looking at the camera and smiling!

This outfit screamed sunshine to me.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Help!

Heaven help me - it's not even 8:00 on the first morning of having both kids home, and Camden is already complaining that there's no one to play with. I'm not sure I'll survive this. I'm such a slow mover in the morning that I can barely get them breakfast and be civil, much less PLAY! Not sleeping well at night does not help. For some reason, Rory was up several times last night, and this was after it took me over 2 hours to get to sleep.My plan before today was to not let him just randomly watch TV, but to use it as a reward and not a babysitter. Wonder how long I'll hold out.

Our new caseworker is coming today for our 3 month post-placement visit. The house is pretty much ready. Now all I have to do is come up with a way to keep the kiddos from trashing it before noon.

I spent yesterday morning running errands - six stops in all! Rory was VERY good and put up with all the trips in and out of her carseat. After Brian took Camden to school this morning, he realized that Camden actually was supposed to be there all day and not a half day, and it definitely was easier to take care of those errands with just one child instead of two! I picked up our pictures from Angie, and then went to Michaels to look for frames. I've been trying to decide the best way to display our pictures of Camden as a baby, plus Rory's pictures and then various family pictures. I think I'm going to plan to put alot of the pictures (especially the non-current ones) in our hallway, and I bought white frames plus mats for them in different sizes. I'm hoping this will allow me to display quite a few photographs in a decorative way. If I were really creative and brave, I'd try to buy coordinating frames, but I'm not so I bought everything in white wood, which will match our white trim and white doors.

Brian had the awards program for his school last night so he was gone all day. I think any exhaustion he might be feeling is outweighed by the excitement of having his first year almost over. Today is field day (whatever that means, but it's out of the classroom) and tomorrow is the 4th grade picnic, so he is basically finished with the year. I think he has to go in on Thursday for some paperwork and then a couple hours on Friday to hand out report cards.

Here's a picture of Camden yesterday morning as he headed off to school. I took a picture of him on his first day as well. If I were on top of things, I'd post the picture from his first day as well, but I'm not so you'll have to settle for this one. I also included some pictures of him from our picnic and feeding the ducks on Saturday.