Thursday, June 28, 2012

Home study completion is in sight!

We have completed two home study visits, with two on the calendar.  I have just a few more pieces of paper to get to the social worker and we're done with the home study paperwork.  Two of those pieces of paper are medical forms for Matt & I.  We have appointments next week with the doctor.  You know what's cool and it's not the weather?  (not funny, I know)  The doctor's office had scheduled appts later in July, saying there were no appts sooner.  I called the nurse, who likes me (go figure) and is an adoptive mom herself.  I explained that I really needed sooner appts so we could get this thing moving.  She fit us in next week!  Whoever's praying on our behalf, thank you!  Keep the prayers coming these next couple of weeks that everything (especially medicals) will go smoothly, no surprises, no obstacles. 

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Ramblings about our vacation and what's ahead

I would like to give you a well written, concise, beautiful picture of our trip to Orlando.  I'm afraid if you're going to get that, it'll have to come from my husband.  I'm going to give you random, not in any particular order, thoughts, funnies, advice, etc.
  • GPS units are so cool!  We had so much less stress than long road trips of the past.
  • Nintendo DS's and in vehicle DVD players are wonderful entertainment for the kids.
  • Florida is SO STINKIN' hot in the summer.  I think the humidity is like 125%.  And yes, it did rain every afternoon.
  • My kids are great travelers.  We spent a total of approximately 40 hours in the car in the last week and we had minimal whining and groaning (most of what we did have was from me).
  • If you enjoy people watching, DisneyWorld will totally entertain you. 
  • The Magic Kingdom is not the happiest place on earth as advertised.  Courtney told me one day she thought we were the only family in the park not trying to tear each other's eyes out. 
  • Having a good time is usually the result of making a choice to have a good time!
  • We saw some people who totally confirmed some stereotypes.  We stood in line with a family (grandparents, parents, kids) that had to be from New Jersey.  We actually saw them several times one day.  They were yelling at each others quite colorfully every time we saw them.  On the other hand, the most polite people we experienced were British. One British gentleman actually insisted that I get in front of him in line. 
  • I love the It's a Small World ride.  I don't care how corny anyone else thinks it is.
  • I am OLD and my favorite rides at DisneyWorld are still Winnie the Pooh, Peter Pan's Flight, and the Haunted Mansion.
  • My husband is so awesome.  Why, you ask?  He went to a conference every day and wasn't even jealous of the fun we were having.  He truly was happy because we were having fun.
  • My husband is so awesome.  Why, you ask?   We teased him relentlessly this week about him going to a geek conference with all the other computer geeks.  He took it quite well.
  • New Smyrna Beach has white sand and great surf.
  • No amount of sun screen will keep Courtney from getting burned on a white sand beach.
  • No amount of water and rough surf will scare Cassidy.
  • When a manatee swims between me and my children in the ocean, it scares me badly!  Especially when I read that this particular beach has reported LOTS of shark attacks.
  • Sand sticks to everything.
  • Florida is so stinkin' hot!
  • When your cousin Sherry at gives you advice about how to maneuver DisneyWorld, you should do what she says.
  • There are lines to get in line at DisneyWorld.
  • Courtney can sing "O Canada" using nothing but meow's. 
  • Everything in Orlando costs significantly more than it does in Oklahoma.
  • The Renaissance hotel is really fancy and nice and enjoyable.  Thank you to my hubby's employer!
  • Corky's BBQ in Memphis, TN is really yummy.
  • Despite heat and crowds, the girls and I really like DisneyWorld, Magic Kingdom being our favorite.
  • Everybody looks fun when wearing mouse ears.
  • To make it easier to have a good time at Disney, stay at a Disney resort and go in January (did I mention it was hot).  We spent a lot of time in transit, but the hotel didn't cost us anything, so I'm not complaining.
  • Cassidy does not trust me enough to choose rides because she was sure she wouldn't survive riding Splash Mountain. (She made it). 
  • When Courtney was bothering Cassidy, Cassidy looked at me and said, "Do you see what I have to live with?" 
Okay, I warned you it was random.  We just got home a few hours ago and I'm tired ;) 

On the adoption front...we have a home study visit on Wednesday evening this week.  We are have a bunch of paperwork to complete between now and then.  I think I'll start tomorrow afternoon when I've had some sleep so it won't be random also. 

I am so grateful for a long road trip that was so completely uneventful.  I am VERY grateful for a wonderful time to enjoy my family and have fun with them without being interrupted by work or chores!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Strange Mixture of Excitement and Guilt

We are finally head long into the adoption process!

We have had one home study visit and have the next two scheduled.  I have adoption paperwork all over my desk and all over my computer.  I have a giant 3 ring binder tabbed and ready to try to keep everything organized.  I have checklists for my checklists.  We are so excited to be making head way.

At the same time, we are right now in Orlando, Florida.  Matt started a new job in March and they told him pretty quickly they wanted him to attend the TechEd Conference in Orlando in June.  We talked about how hard it would be for him to go to Orlando and leave us home.  Then we started talking about what an opportunity it was to take the girls on a great vacation.  That’s where our conversations about the whole idea got complicated.  You see, we’ve been trying to save money to finance the adoption. I have been working a part time job to help with money for the adoption.  We have received gifts from others to help finance the adoption.  Knowing this, is it right to go on a vacation?

We talked about it, thought about it, prayed about it.  Here was our conclusion…we have two awesome daughters who have already made some sacrifices.  One - we have traveled very little since returning from China in 2005.  Two – money hasn’t flowed their way very freely lately.  There will be sacrifices in the future that will outweigh those.  We have requested a special needs child.  He will most likely need surgery, physical therapy, or some other kinds of special medical attention.  This means time and money of the parents flowing that direction.  A new child in the family is always an adjustment, but one who speaks another language and has no idea who you are or what’s going on exactly is huge.  Our conclusion – this trip is a great gift to give our girls.

So, in conclusion of the vacation rant, Matt’s company is financing a good chunk of this “vacation” for the girls.  Since he will be attending the conference, they are paying our driving mileage, our hotel, and Matt’s food.   We would not even have considered this otherwise.  I don’t think I’m justifying this.  I think it’s taking advantage of an opportunity to invest some time and money into our girls before things go a little crazy for a while.  I certainly hope that those of you who have invested in our upcoming adoption will understand.  I also pray that you know how much you are appreciated.  We don’t take anyone’s contribution lightly. 

For those of you who have prayed us to this point in the adoption process, thank you and please keep praying.  We are in the fast lane and need God’s protection and provision in so many ways.  I worked on adoption paperwork in the car on the way down and have more I can do on the way home!

Love and thanks, Martha