Friday, June 27, 2008

Just a Quick Update

Here is a quick update of our lives these days-

Micah is full-on walking! He really prefers running (no surprise there) but usually ends falling and doing a head stand when he gets going too fast. I wish I had a picture of it. I'll try to get one.

A few days ago I was driving home and saw my neighbors were having a garage sale. I was pretty excited to see a Little Tykes slide in the sale so we ran over and bought ourselves a gently used slide for only $2! Bargain shopping! Micah could barely wait for me to get it home to try it out. He's mastered the technique of climbing up the ladder and sliding down (he laughs when he gets to the bottom).

Micah has officially switched over to one nap. Sometimes he wants to sleep in the morning, but I've learned that if he does, he will not go back down in the afternoon, so I usually try to keep him up until after lunch. It's been a rough transition - I didn't really expect it to be hard on him, but his schedule was crazy for about a week so we had some crabby nights. But, we're all getting used to it now, so all is well.

Last week we went to the Botanical Gardens to listen to jazz under the full moon. It was a beautiful night - although I don't think I even noticed because I was busy running after our toddler the whole night. (Actually Kevin and I took turns.) At one point we wanted to sit and eat our hummus and cheese, so we strapped him in his wagon and bribed him with a lollipop. (All organic from Trader Joes!) He was pretty happy about it...

He had a great time and we had fun too. This is the only other picture I got from the night - I didn't have much time to get the camera out - this boy is seriously on the go!

That's all for now! We have a fun weekend with family ahead so I'll be sure to post pictures soon!

P.S. Congratulations to Lisa & Shawn for their referral of siblings - a girl and a boy!!! They aree super excited so go tell them Congratulations too!

Monday, June 23, 2008


So, seriously WOW! Thank you all SO much for being so excited for us as we start our second adoption. It warms my heart to think of everyone following along again. I don't really know why I'm surprised - I still stalk the blogs and love following along myself!

You all should know that this is going to take us a lot longer than our first adoption, so be prepared (I think I'm trying to prepare myself here). First, we are finishing Micah's re-adoption, so that is a priority right now. (I think we're just waiting for a court date, so it should be finished soon.) And, we still have to pick an agency - I'm making a spreadsheet. (SO much different than our first time around - we went to CHI, loved them and said, "This is it!") And we are requesting a girl, so the wait time for our referral will be much longer. One agency was quoting referral times as 10 months for a girl and 3 months for a boy! Wow. Big difference. But, right now, we're okay with that. It will make for the perfect gap in ages between Micah and his little sister. That's actually why we're starting now - we know we want our kids to be close in age (we have always said this) and if we start now, they will be somewhere around 2 1/2 years apart. (If all goes according to plan - hahahaha.) So, that's where we're at - still the beginning! I'll let you know when we've made some progress!

And, of course, what is a post without pictures, right? Here are Micah and two of his BFFs playing on a slip-n-slide. (Yep, we have one of those. I know - classy right? :)

This was the first day we had it - we didn't even bother with swim diapers, so in a matter of minutes all three boys had expanding nappies. And then we had three naked boys on the slip-n-slide.

If you can click to make this one larger - Micah's face is priceless...

I love this one because Micah is just sitting at the bottom wondering what is going on...

Good times people, good times. :)

Thursday, June 19, 2008

It's Been A Year!

Can you believe it? It's been a year since we first saw Micah's sweet face! One year ago yesterday we got the call, but since I was traveling back from Oregon, we waited until one year ago today to go into the CHI office and learn about our child. It was pretty exciting since we didn't know if he would be a boy, a girl, twins or a sibling group. It all seemed pretty perfect to us when they showed us his picture, and even more perfect when we learned that his name, Yabsira, means "the work of God the Father."

I still can't believe it's been one year. Sometimes I feel like he's been with us forever and I can't remember what it was like without him, and then other days I still sit in wonder and think how amazing it is that he is actually here.

And, this seems as good of a time as any to announce that we are in the beginning, beginning stages of our second adoption. We've been talking about it for a while, but decided on Father's Day that we are ready to start on our baby girl from Ethiopia (yes - girl! this time we'll know!). We can't use the agency we used with Micah because they have restrictions on the time period between adoptions from Ethiopia, so we're currently researching agencies and trying to figure out the financial end of it. We know this will take longer than our first time around (which felt like a wonderful whirlwind!) but we're okay with that (we'll see how I'm doing 6 months or a year from now - someone remind me of this post then!) Basically, we are both really excited!!

Oh - and I was trying to add video from our referral day to the montage, but I am not as tech-savvy as I thought, so if you want to re-live it in video click here. :)

(And, one more thing! I am praying that all those of you waiting get to experience this joy soon! Especially Lisa - she is ready! :)

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

What Would You Do? *Edited

Bad day at the park today. Here is what happened:

I took Micah to the park this afternoon. He is walking much better now so I figured it would be fun for him to walk around and swing and slide. It was a beautiful day so the playground was pretty busy but we were having a great time. I was helping him up the stairs to the slide when I saw two little girls on the landing at the top of the slide. They were about 5 years old and were playing and laughing. I saw them, they saw us coming (saw my sweet baby taking big steps up the playground steps for the first time), and this is what I heard...

"Run! Run away from the brown skinned kid!"

HUH? I honestly stood there and looked down at Micah and felt tears coming. A five year old at the park was going to make me cry. I scrambled us both up the stairs, searching my mind for something grown-up to say instead of yelling, "Hey! That's not nice!" like I wanted to. The two girls slid down the slide, stood up and then, and then, she yelled it again! "Run! Run away from the brown skinned kid!"

I watched them from the top of the slide run to the swings. I waited for a parent to come around. Should I tell the parent what the child had said? No parent showed up so I took Micah for a drink of water and called Kevin who warned me not to start a fight with a 5 year old at the park. :)

When we went back to play, the little girl was gone. No parent to talk to even if I had decided it was a good idea.

So here are my questions - What would you say to that little girl? Nothing? Anything? Would you talk to her parents? I would want to know if my son said something like that on the playground, but maybe that's because I care. I was totally unprepared for today. You think you're prepared, and then it happens and you realize you're not. How do I help Micah prepare for it? What if he had been old enough to understand? How would I have answered his questions?

*First, thank you all so much for the feedback! It is great hearing your thoughts on this (and I'd love to hear more too!) I've also had some good feedback through email with a couple of families. Some have pointed out that perhaps she was saying it in the same way as, "Run away from the girl with the red hair," or, "Run away from the boy with the blue shirt." I agree that this young girl wasn't completely aware of what she was saying, and perhaps she only meant it in the way that, well, Micah is brown. However, running away from a child at the park because of the color of their shirt, their hair or their skin is still mean-spirited. So, in that sense, I really wish I had said something to her - just to point out that it isn't nice. Would it have mattered? Would she have understood? I'm not sure.

Here's the good part of the story! Today we went to a different park because I had to go to Trader Joe's and this one is down the street from TJ's. As we were packing up our stuff Micah toddled over to two women having lunch - one African American and one Caucasian. They asked if I was his Mom. Yes. Did you adopt him or are you his Mom? Yes, he was adopted and I'm his Mom. At this point I'm a little nervous about the conversation, but then both women start talking about how wonderful adoption is and the Caucasian woman tells me that she was adopted at four years old.

So, I sat with them for almost an hour (while Micah flirted with one of the little girls with them - seriously followed her around and hugged her) and had a great talk about race and adoption. These women were Grandmas so they had a lot of wisdom and experience and I ate it up. I told them about the park and they were both upset by it too. The African American woman talked to me about raising Micah up - always boosting his self esteem so that no one can bring him down. Basically, it was a pretty great conversation and I have to think that God had a little bit to do with me being there to feel some warmth and positive energy. I feel better about yesterday after talking to them and the women told me when they'll be at this particular park so I plan to go back and see them again. And then Micah can see his new older girlfriend again too. :)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Happy Father's Day

Kevin, you are an amazing man, husband and father. My favorite thing in the world is to watch you and our son together. I always knew you would be a wonderful Dad - I just had no idea how wonderful. Just as we have been blessed by Micah, he is blessed to have such a kind, loving man as his Dad.

Happy Father's Day to my sweet husband.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Some Things...and the ZOO!

Before we get on to the fun zoo trip we took the other day, I want to share something I'm pretty excited about. My friend Chris and I have been friends for over 20 years - she lives down the street, but since we both have kids (she has 4) we usually end up talking on the phone - and more times than not we talk for a couple of hours. Most people wonder what we talk about since we see each other all the time, but we usually talk about family, kids, God, religion, HIV/AIDS, orphans, and what we can do to make a difference. From these talks we decided to start a playgroup, but one that has a purpose - we've cleverly named it Playgroup with a Purpose. :)

Our goal is to have moms and kids getting together each month for a playgroup, but to that group they will bring donations for whatever charity/cause we are collecting for that month. For example, if the charity needs children's Tylenol, then we will encourage the members to pick up an extra bottle of Tylenol each time they go to the store that month. Same thing if we are collecting diapers or whatever it is. We also want to try and find volunteer opportunities for moms to participate in with their kids - hoping to instill in our children a heart for giving their time for others. We know we aren't going to be making a HUGE difference, but we believe that small steps lead to bigger things.

We had been talking about it for a while, but I got motivated to start after I finished the book Red Letters. I figured it was time to stop talking and start doing. I'm sharing all of this because I plan to post about how it is going as we proceed. That way - if you think it might be a good idea to do in your group of friends, you'll have some idea on how to get started. We're hoping our first cause will be AHOPE (I've emailed them and am waiting to hear back) and our first playgroup meeting is next month.

Okay - on to the ZOO! You may remember last September when we met up with two other Ethiopian boys - Minnow and Boomer. You don't remember? Here - I'll give you a visual...

As you can see - Micah wasn't into the group photo. And, now that these boys are all mobile (Minnow has been, but Boomer & Micah were catching up), it is even harder to get a picture of them together. This was the best I could do at the zoo...

Yes, that is Micah's fanny sticking up in the center. He is still mainly crawling or spider-walking. He even told most of the other kids how cool crawling is so they joined him...

We were also joined by this little cutie on our trip to the zoo...

It was a really great day - I had a moment watching all four boys (and one sweet big sister) playing in the fountains at the zoo - I was just overcome with how wonderful and special they are. I know all children are special, but seeing them all together... well, I don't have words - there is just something about it.

Since there are so many more cute pictures from the zoo - here is a slideshow. (Because I know you all love slideshows! :)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Where is Micah?

I could not resist posting this video - it is so cute. :)

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Where to Start? *Edited

So much has been going on lately, it's hard to know where to start (and where to end without making this the longest blog post ever).

First news - Micah is ALMOST walking. If you'll reme
mber, loyal blog readers, he took a couple of steps on Mother's Day. Since then he hasn't done too much on the walking front, but this past week he has started to take more steps and has figured out how to get from a sit to a stand by himself. Watching him take those teetering steps is one of my favorite things ever. Here he is with his truck out for a stroll...

More news - Micah is off the bottle! I know, this is big, right? We decided to start weaning him from his beloved bot the week after we went on vacation. His last bottle was Monday morning and he hasn't had one since. I thought it would be WAY more difficult to get through this, but so far he's been okay. His bottles were tied to naps and bedtime, so I also worried he wouldn't sleep well without them, but he's handling it pretty well. (However, as I type he is currently refusing to go to sleep and is being very vocal about it. Of course!)

We also went swimming at a neighbor's pool this weekend and learned that Micah likes (loves) to jump in and go under. It is quite adorable...

We also learned that he LOVES the basketball...

And the trampoline...

And he had popcorn for the first time - which he shared very nicely with one of his BFFs Chuck...

It's been a pretty great week! I have even more pictures, but I'll share them soon. A special shout-out to Mitch who took about 300 pictures this weekend for us. He was the photographer this weekend and did a great job! Here is his self-portrait...

That's all for now - I have more, but I'll save it for later! (And, in case you're wondering - Micah did fall asleep while I was typing this - without the bottle it does take him a little longer, but he talks until he falls asleep. Cutie.)

*EDIT: Okay, I lied - Kevin has been uploading video tonight so I thought I'd add one in! Here is Micah trying to climb on his giraffe. Normally this is no problem for him, but this is just before bed and he is a bit tired and uncoordinated. :)

Monday, June 2, 2008

Where We've Been...

Yep. The beach. The beach in St. Pete, FL, to be exact. (I didn't post about this before we went because we traveled sans baby and I didn't really want to hear from Anonymous telling me it was too soon to leave Micah with his Grandparents for three days. I was worried enough about it on my own.)

My awesome husband, who works really hard, won a promotion his company was running, so we were offered a free (FREE!) trip to the beach with a bunch of people he works with. Good times!

It was actually very hard to be away from Micah (I talked about him constantly to make up for missing him) but we made a pact to make the most of it, so we did! We relaxed on the beach and drank fru-fru frozen concoctions, swam in the beautiful clear water, listened to live music in a bar on the beach, ate yummy fresh seafood, and WE SLEPT TIL 9 AM EVERY DAY! :)

Here are some other things we did...

Kevin played frisbee on the beach...

He went down this huge waterslide...

And, yes, I did too!

We ate (a lot!)

And we took the obligatory one-armed self-portrait...

We were sooooo happy to come home and see Micah's smiling face (and he did smile HUGE for us when we walked in!), but I am missing the ocean and relaxation already! When we were leaving I said to Kevin, "Only two more months and we'll be back at the beach!" And next time Micah will be with us! I can't wait to see him see the ocean for the first time!!