Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Trying to hold on...

As if this year hasn't been hard enough, I lost a good friend last night. She went to sleep and never woke up. That is not supposed to happen to a young woman in her 20's, especially one with a beautiful toddler that needs her love.

This is a year of loss and my heart is breaking again, my dear friend Daphne having passed away about 3 months ago. I am just trying to make it through the next three days...I'll be with family for the holidays and darn it- I want my MOMMY! 2008 has been a crappy year, I am realllllly hoping that 2009 is an improvement.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Counting Down the Days

We're off to Grandma's house in exactly 9 days. I need to get outta here! Looking forward to all that fabulous Czech food. The diet could be in serious jeopardy. Unless my nagging, I mean loving husband keeps me in check (no pun intended). I think some long walks dreaming of our future together will be in order.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Celebrating 5 Months of Waiting by......

Elfing Ourselves! What can I say, it's better than shouting at the world that THIS IS NOT FAIR!!!! Hmmm I feel better now. Enjoy the show!

Send your own ElfYourself eCards

Monday, December 1, 2008

Crazy Christmas Pageant Time!

I am soooo pumped about this years Christmas performance. My kiddos are going to sing/sign Silent Night. Yes this has been done before, but I am putting a few twists into it. We will sing one verse with hands behind backs, regular lighting, piano etc. students all dressed in black. Then, we switch lighting to black lights, hands come out covered in white gloves and we sign the rest in absolute silence. In the clip it shows a choir doing it in silence and it is soooo powerful. I can just imagine how it will look with the dramatic effects of lighting and costumes! Plus, I was able to book a wonderful community member who is an ASL interpreter to get us started!

The next weeks should really fly by! I hope everyone is feeling excited and hopeful about the holidays. Remember- this is the time of year when anything can happen!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Going Home for the Holidays

I am counting down to the 21st! I can't wait to head to Grandma's and Grandpa's for the holidays. There is something special about being with family for Christmas. My parents are driving over from WY, my uncle will be there-this is going to be great!

Part of my heart will of course be in Ethiopia, but I know enough not to wish for a Christmas baby for '08. We have only been "waiting" for 4+ months and to be honest I don't expect to have my baby home for Christmas '09 either- but you can bet I DO expect have a referral by then. Sooooo, one more Christmas of guessing who my baby is. Then a second Christmas holding a photo and praying for court dates.

Something tells me I will be doing a lot of drinking over the holidays. :)

I must remember to focus on the positive things that are happening in the NOW! I WILL enjoy my family at Christmas.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Eat, Drink, and Be Merry!

I love girlfriends! They cheer you up, make you laugh, drink too much and then try to belly dance. That is what life should always be about-eat drink and be merry!!!!

Moi, vamping for the camera!

The girls trying to figure out some some cool moves.

This is what happens when belly dance mixes with martinis!!!

The princess of the party! Note the crown.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Happiest American!

I worried that my country wasn't ready to elect a man who had the true capacity to bring positive change. I was wrong. My heart is bursting, I admit to crying tears of joy when Obama was announced as the President Elect. I admit to feeling chills watching his acceptance speech-knowing that I was witnessing history.

For so long America has had a negative world image. Hopefully we are taking a first step in changing that image. I have never been more proud.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

4 Months on Sunday

Yep we've hit the 4 month mark. Assuming that I will have a 16 month wait, as so many other people have had, that means that I am 1/4 of the way through the wait! Not too bad I'm a think'in. I have to say the first two months were hard. I couldn't believe that we spent so long on all that paperwork and that we still had so far to go. Then after a while I just relaxed about the whole thing. It will take however long it takes, I get time to get ready financially, emotionally, and intellectually for having my life turned upside down by a child. I think the trick for me right now is to use my time wisely. Let's hope I am this reasonable when I hit the 10 month mark!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Goodbye Las Vegas

DH and I have been planning a fun March trip to Vegas as a way to celebrate being DINK-WAD's (Double Income No Kids- With a Dog). We thought that instead of moping around wondering when a referral might happen that we would really concentrate on enjoying the NOW. So much for that idea.

As always the DH work place has a way of messing with our plans and now my DH will be away for a few months at that time. Or maybe he won't, oh wait- no he will, no sorry work can't make up their minds if he's going or not. ARGH!

I am determined to focus on enjoying the NOW. The martini party on Friday was a great way to follow through on this resolution!

Another resolution- learning how to say "No" to people. I seriously SUCK at this. Which explains why I am the frazzled mess that I am this week. Working (60+ hrs/wk), teaching belly dance, performing, planning a Remembrance Day celebration for work, committees, tech rep, learning groups the list goes on- why is it so hard to say no?

Anyone out there ever found a cure for this?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Celebrating friendship...

I just want to say a big Thank You to all of my friends and family that have been so supportive during the adoption process. This includes all of my "online" family too. Without you gals who truly understand to the depths of your souls how frustrating this can be- I probably would be insane by now! And to my belly dancer girls- future aunties to my Ethiopian Prince/Princess- Hugs and Kisses, you are the best!

We miss you Daphne...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Baby showers....blech.

I am finding it harder and harder to be excited for women family/friends/acquaintances when they announce their pregnancies. I manage to smile, say the right things etc. but inside I am pissed off! Like my brother and his wife that are working on #2 (well, 2 for their marriage but my bro has 5 kids altogether with the 6th due in Nov.). Seriously? How fair is that?

Then, after a hard day at work, I am supposed to go to the staff room and revel in the joy of throwing a baby shower for yet another staff member that "didn't even plan for it" aren't they lucky!?!?! Ooh, and let's top all the joy with trying to force me to hold it, cuddle it, and tell you how wonderful this is and I am so happy for you. *&^$ OFF!!! Is it not enough that i contributed money to purchase lovely gifts- I was happy to do that. Just try to understand my pain in this and don't make me hold it!

In the last two years, with a staff of only 14 women (only 8 of whom are in their "child bearing years")there have been 6 pregnancies! If one more person tells me teasingly to "drink the water, surely that will fix everything and you'll be pregnant in no time" I am going to lose it.

People just don't get it. I am in pain every day about this. I have a child- I just don't know them yet. It hurts every day not getting to hug, touch and love them. To worry about what they must endure until I can be there to protect them. So don't ask me if I want to hold your baby- I don't. I want mine.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Wedding Pics....Four years later

I have never really posted pictures of my wedding. We didn't have a professional photographer, we chose at the time to use the money to fly in family. I don't regret it, but I've never really celebrated our pictures either. I have decided that it is time I did celebrate the "kickoff" of some of the most wonderful years of my life!
The Venue
Mom and Dad's backyard, spruced up with the help of good friends.

My little bro is actually having his side pinched by me while we take this "loving" photo. He kept teasing me about helping my husband-to-be find all the escape routes!

Lighting the unity candle, I quite like this picture actually.

It wasn't an expensive wedding but we were very happy. I am starting to think this one needs to be blown up and hung in the house.

Of course, no wedding of mine would have been comlete without belly dancers. My teacher had started a new group of tribal dancers and they performed for us. It was great because it was too hot for dancing otherwise.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Shimmy and Shake

I had an icky day at work. In the interests of being professional I will leave it at that.

The good news is that Belly Dance resumed tonight! I love teaching that class- I always feel good about myself mentally, physically, spiritually when I'am finished. Helping other women see the beauty in their own bodies is very fulfilling. I love "corrupting" them. Generally they come to class covered head to toe in sweats/workout gear. By the end of the year I can see bellies! Its a great thing to be able to love your own body no matter its size and shape. It's the only body we have, and if its functional that is worth celebrating!!!

Here is my "advertising" pic for belly dance. I think it shows that I am comfortable with my curves and very feminine. Some people act as though my art is some kind of strip tease. Farthest thing from it. There is a big difference between sensual and sexual. Middle Eastern dance is by women for women. Rarely have I let a man watch me dance, and only at special functions such as weddings. This is something I do for me, my own personal well being

It feels good to have this part of myself back again! I hope everyone does something healthy for themselves today.

Monday, September 8, 2008

One Hundred Good Wishes Quilt

My first SQWISH from Shannon and Dan
Thanks for getting us off to a great start!

The pieces have started trickling in! Above is a piece from my friend Jeannie. She cut it out of her daughter's favorite outgrown dress. It means so much knowing it is pre-loved!

Simona sent the butterfly fabric, curiously it matches all of her tattoos.

Derek had his wife Simona pick out the fabric but he choose the wish and emailed it from Afghanistan!

A SQWISH from Tanner and Stewie, beloved dogs of Simona and Derek.

Many more to come! This has been so much fun already. If anyone wants to trade SQWISH's just let me know!


Friday, September 5, 2008

Time Flies When You Go Back To Work

I love my job. Honestly it was such a relief to go back to work this week. I was able to forget about adoption worries for extended periods of time. It's really hard to worry about that stuff when you are trapped in a room with 20 Grade 4's all day long!

Just for fun, and because I want to get to know people (fellow bloggers) better I am going to post a couple of questions here. I look forward to reading what you have to say! That is if you choose to respond....ooohhhh I'm having flashbacks to my Jr. High birthday party where no one showed up because I had pissed off the popular girl in school. I am an adult, I can handle this. Gosh I hope someone responds! ;)

1. What was the happiest moment of your life?
2. When in life have you felt most alone?
3. How has your life been different than what you’d imagined?

My answers:

1. My happiest moment, probably the day after my wedding. All the fuss was over and I could just enjoy my new journey in life.

2. That Jr. high party comes to mind...

3. I never thought I would get married or be a mom. I had planned on being an independent purple haired old lady in pink high tops cruising the world in the Peace Corps.


Sunday, August 31, 2008

Summer Summed Up

This summer was the very first in ten years that I haven't been in school or working. Add that to completing adoption paperwork and beginning the "waiting" stage, and a formula for a nervous breakdown is created. Disaster was avoided by keeping myself busy-never has my house been more organized! I've loaded some pictures to share with you that detail my summer activities.

Much time was spent with my greatest companion, Kyah. She now hates the camera.

A lovely friend of mine made a trip to India and brought this elephant back for our future babe. I thought it was prophetic as elephants also have a two year gestation period (well 22 mos).

I became addicted to, seeing these photos never failed to bring a smile to my face!

My mother-in-law came for a visit. We had such a great day! I can't believe we got her into the paddle boat!

We took her Mini Golfing for the first time. We laughed till our sides hurt!

I crocheted 4 baby blankets (I was obviously not dealing well with this much time on my hands). I have a lot of pregnant family and friends. While I no longer want to poke their eyes out with forks (I went through an angry/ jealous phase when we first were dealing with infertility) it is still sometimes frustrating to listen to them complain about being pregnant, chasing after kids, how hard it is to lose their shape yadda yadda. Seriously, do you realize who you are talking too?

This one is for my niece, due in November.

This last one I am keeping for my own angel. The rest will be gifts for family and friends.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

One More Step

Just received notice that our application for Permanent Residency for "baby unknown" is all set and ready to go. Now all we need is a referral to help us fill in those blanks.

In running news I did some "bruising" in my right Achilles so am switching to bike riding for my exercise for a couple of days just to play it safe. i also bought this new DVD that uses ballet movements for stretching and strengthening, I think I will add it to my repertoire- I need some grace in my life!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Song of the Waiting Mother

As I was reading through Toddler Adoption: The Weaver's Craft by Mary Hopkins-Best I was moved by this poem. It was written in 1987 by Christine Futia.

Song of the Waiting Mother

I'm pregnant, but my tummy isn't growing.
And no one ever calls me "Little Mom."
The public simply isn't overflowing
With questions that I'd handle with aplomb.

There are no special clothes to mark my waiting.
Nobody stops and smiles as I pass by.
The absence of a due-date is frustrating
And looking at the nursery makes me cry.

When I'm overdue no one will worry.
The phone won't ring and ring as friends check in.
I can't induce my labor in a hurry,
My new life as a parent to begin.

Adoption is a worrisome endeavor,
And waiting all alone is not much fun.
To be "with child" a year seems like forever.
Dear God, we're ready! Please send us our son!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Meet Kyah-The Best English Mastiff Ever!

Isn't she a cutie pie? Yes, she is allowed on the furniture, and yes, her tongue always does that. You should see her fall asleep on linoleum. Her tongue dries and sticks to the floor. Pretty funny when she wakes up! :)

This was for Halloween, yeah, pretty gruesome trick but the kids loved it. Half of the time the neighborhood kids forgot about the candy because they wanted to play with our girl!

People always ask us if we can trust Kyah, or are worried about her adjusting to children. After spending some time with my best friends lovely son I can say unequivocally that we are not worried. I mean please every time the dog sat down this is what happened. She was so patient and they would sit like this for extended periods. It was too cute!

*Identities have been changed to protect the innocent! :)

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Reframing My Thinking

After much internal debate I have changed my ticker to reflect my new attitude about waiting for a referral. With the ticker that counted up, I would get a bit discouraged every day hoping that I might get to be the lucky person who gets a referral earylier that the projected wait times of 8-15 months.

Unrealistic, and unfair to myself in trying to have any sense of a life outside of "the BIG WAIT". So instead I have created a ticker that counts down from 15 months. I first thought of this after seeing Ricki H. switch hers for the last "push" towards a referral. But dismissed it as not something that I needed at this time.

Then, after meeting and talking with some other wonderful "waiting" couples at the BBQ Saturday I realized that my child referral WILL come in time. My only question at this point is how I want this wait to be for my family. If I spend all my time stressing over when the referral may come, am I becoming the best parent that I can be? Am I using my time wisely and enjoying these last precious months with DH? Hence, the backwards ticker. I am going to assume that a referral will not arrive until the 15 months time frame. In reality I am also preparing myself for the fact that the timelines could also be extended again, so even 18 months is possible I suppose. For now I will stick with the agency's proposed timelines.

So, I have 15 months to whip my butt into shape, have fun, create memories, and become the best me that I can be for the sake of my future child. Hope this makes sense to everyone.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Congrats to Ricki and Bruce!

This couple have waited 16 months + for their referral and finally they know who their son is, it is truly a miracle. I have been following their journey with baited breath. It will be so exciting to see how life unfolds as they prepare to bring home their son.

Let's keep those referrals coming!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Taking a Break

Running will have to wait for about two weeks while I let my leg heal up. Nothing major just some swelling from overexertion. I'm being a good girl and checking in with the Doc just to make sure.

The adoption front is quiet. We've mailed off all of our sponsorship documents, now we just wait. The CAFAC BBQ is coming up and DH and I are looking forward to getting to know the families and having some fun! We're bringing along a good friend who is looking to know more about our adoption community. Should be a lot of fun!

My first "sqwishes" have arrived!!! Thank you to Shannon and Dan, and Simona and her family. We love the fabric pieces and I cried at the wishes. Our child is going to be so blessed!

Take care everyone!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

First 5K in my life!

Yep, I did it, I was able to complete a 5K today for the first time ever in my life. I also decreased my time in the first 3 kilometers. I went from 6 to 9 repetitions of 1:3, only slowing to 1:4 in the last lap. It HURT LIKE HELL, and yet felt really great too-who knew!?! Am I joining the Olympic running team, no, but it felt like a massive victory for my chubby butt.

For inspiration, every time I think of quitting, I picture trying to squeeze into an airplane seat and sitting there (off and on) for 30 hours. Knowing that I want to be as comfortable as possible on the flight to get my little one is a huge motivator for me right now. My last plane trip was an excersize in humiliation. My hips were simply too wide for the chair. I kept "spreading" and my hips pushed the armrest of my seatmate humiliating, and the guy was not polite about it. Honestly, I had bruises on my hips when the trip was over. I refuse to go through that again.

Additionally, my overall outlook on life has genuinely improved since I've been working out. Bart (DH) is loving my new attitude and comments positively on the improvements. He is very supportive of this venture of mine.

Tomorrow will be a recovery day but i look forward to my next big push!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Our Ethiopian Adoption Journey: Why Ethiopia?#links

I get this question all the time, and frankly, I get tired of answering it. Here is my answer,
written far more eloquently than I ever could manage.

Our Ethiopian Adoption Journey: Why Ethiopia?#links

Thank you Chad and Laura fo allowing me to borrow this.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Day Two

Had a great workout today. I actually completed 3.7 km!!! I am stunned. I did cycles of 1:3 for the first two kilometers, and then slowed down to 1:5 for the last bit. My body is definitely hurting, but its good pain! I feel really proud of myself. And it is amazing how much the excersize has helped me get out of my "adoption blues" cycle.

Push ups: 5-rest-7- rest-16!!!

Forgot to mention that my sweetie went running with me which I think really helped my motivation. He is so supportive of my efforts it was great time spent together.

Oh, and I cut my hair super short- I love it! Will post pictures soon.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Ok So Today Was Really Day One

Had some delays getting started on the running (gym closure, thunder storms), but did get right to work on the push up challenge.

I walk/jogged 2 km today. (Officially Day 1)
Rest day for Push up Challenge.


On the adoption front things are pretty quiet right now. Just waiting for one last piece of paperwork so that I can mail off our Sponsorship paperwork. I almost hate to send it in. It feels like the last bit of control that I have in this process until the referral comes.

If you are reading this post, take some time to love your body today!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

the eyes of my eyes are opened: Thoughts at 6 months waiting...#links#links

I asked Julie for her permission to link to this post. I just about cried when I read it. Finally, somone who understands exactly how I feel. Read on, you'll understand.

the eyes of my eyes are opened: Thoughts at 6 months waiting...#links#links

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Day One of Blog

Cheers to my first post on my first blog!

What am I gonna do with this blog? Well, I wanted a place to share my upcoming adoption experience, my love of belly dancing, and my quest to keep my curves while cutting the fat (I love being curvy, but don't love being unhealthy-surely there is some middle ground somewhere!). That being said, I am beginning two personal fitness challenges. First, to become a runner. I want to work up to a 10K. Secondly, I am going to take the 100 Push-Up Challenge.

Day One July 22, 2008
Running goal: 4 Minute walk, 1 Minute Run repeat sequence 6 times

Day One push ups
*I have to do modified knee push-ups at this point.
Goal: 5 rest 7 rest 10

Wish me luck!