Sunday, July 28, 2013


summer. It truly rolled in too quickly and it is leaving just the same. I had such grand plans for the days of togetherness. I had these wonderful ideas. I also thought my Em would be working on her reading and writing and math- to keep her fresh and get her even more ready for second grade. I planned a lot of things to happen.... sadly, most of them didn't. A lot of other things happened though.

The times that I look back on my laundry list of ideas and plans I have to remember that I didn't fail at bringing them to life. I had to realistically make decisions on what we could handle and let go of the things that were too exhausting, too costly, or just too much for that day in particular. I must be hard on myself but I do feel bad about not being as "fun" or "intentional" as I wish I had been.

This summer was filled with a lot of slow days, so much cousin time for the girls, swim lessons, naps, messes, Barbies, mama's high heels, easy dinners, sister bed sharing and quite a bit of togetherness for our family. Looking back on the summer, I guess I can say that I am proud of that.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

6 pairs of big girls

Life has been full lately. The schedule has been overflowing. We've had many late nights and early mornings. We have enjoyed lots of the craziness, yet also have wanted to run and hide from it all too. We (Lucy) wear 6 pairs of big girl panties at one time and color on everything. We run from dance to baseball games sometimes in the same day. We only occasionally actually smile for a picture. Emily gets out of school tomorrow. All of our extracurricular activities are ending soon. I look forward to the change of pace. I also fear it... my girl will be home all. day. long. Wish me luck. 

Friday, March 15, 2013


November... hmmmmm...... 

I don't feel like there is a lot to note about the month of November for us. These few pictures are the only ones I really have. I'm even trying to remember what happened in that month that would be blog-worthy and I'm coming up short. My best guess is that I blocked it from my memory. There really were some rough times I've mentioned. There weren't a lot of picture taking moments I was willing to see... of course they were cute and all, but it was pretty stressful around our casa. 

Lucy's hair was in full-effect. Big and unruly. She also started kidnapping Emily's pink monkey that was a prized gift from her "old family." Thankfully Emily is gracious and would let her baby sister carry that thing around pretty often. Funny thing is that we bought Lucy the same type of stuffed animal but it was a dog and she loved it for approximately 1-2 days and I'm not sure she's ever cared about it again. I tried! 

 We worked as a family on some turkey-ish homework project for school. She wanted to make him a pirate turkey so we planned and each took a part.

Here's what we came up with. Yes, his peg leg is much longer than his other leg. The heart wants what it wants. There was no convincing her that it should be cut. 

Lucy took looking like a little old lady to a new level. The sweater. The purse. The socks with her comfortable walking shoes.

Emily worked on her Christmas list for Santa as all the catalogs came streaming in this month. I figured it would help us to get to know her more and more by going through and having her show us toys she really likes. It was really good for her to be able to show us instead of trying to remember those random toys she had seen here and there. She was so proud of this list that every person to enter our home until sometime in January had to not only hear about it but see it and hear the description of each item. It had a back on it too. Poor, unsuspecting visitors. :) She even took it with her to see Santa in December.

Thanksgiving was fine.... we ate wonderful meals and spent time with family so that part was wonderful. I say it was fine because holidays are really hard for our big girl. I know her mind goes to other places and she has been known to sabotage a holiday or two and have a really bad day. So, it was fine. That night we started a new tradition with Cam's side of the family: Christmas movie watching. We watched Elf this year and snuggled. That was fun and I'm looking forward to doing it each year.

The girls were excited I'm pretty sure.

November in a nutshell... maybe I'll be willing to remember more of it next year.

Monday, February 11, 2013


October rolled around. Emily came home from school with lice. That pretty much consumed our lives for ten days or so. We spent hours every day doing treatments on the poor girl and cleaning everything. Sheets come off in the morning and go straight into the dryer. She was constantly being picked and looked at by us. Here she is undergoing one of many treatments. I'm pretty sure she will permanently have dry scalp from all the lice shampoo we put on her every day. If you've ever had it in your house, you understand. It was miserable and the whole time I was pretty sure I had it as my scalp would mysteriously itch every time I thought about it. I never want to go there again.... her hair is in a bun or ponytail every single day since then.

I had my 10 year high school reunion. My best friend, Becca, and I planned it. We had tons of support from other alumni, but seriously... why did I do that to myself? We finished a crazy, busy month of September and dove into another whirlwind. It was a lot to take on but it ended up being really wonderful. We also had some friends get married, which is always a good time. Lots of Saturdays taken up by festivities.

 Then there was Halloween and all my dreams of sewing and making the girls' costumes shattered. Why would I torture myself with not having it turn out in the very little time I could give it? I wouldn't so I didn't. I bought an amazing peacock costume from Hissyfits. Thank you, consignment awesomeness.

Cutest peacock ever.

And our beautiful Belle... She wanted to be a mermaid for the longest time. Then it was fairy or a princess. When her cousin had this gem in her closet in Emily's size we jumped for joy- something else done for me without costing money or insane amounts of time and it was exactly what she wanted. win-win-win. She got to go a little crazy with my makeup too. It's so fun having an older daughter who loves to dress up, play with make up, and be such a girly girl.

We try to hang out with family on Halloween as much as we can. This year some family and friends cam over and we ate dinner and sent the dads out trick or treating with the kids.

The night ended like this. She wasn't quite up for the late night.

And so we finished October a little less sane but we were well-equipped to handle any sort of lice situation that came our way. We juggled a lot of activities and events. Some took a toll on Emily and she struggled through October trying to make sense of all the busy weekends and weekdays. People ask why I didn't take more pictures during this time. My real reply, as sad as it may be, is that I don't really want to remember it that way. We had a lot of hard days. I'm just so glad to be through it.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

some more september

So I forgot to mention how my pumpkin had to get surgery in September just to add to all the craziness. She had her adenoids removed and they tried to patch the hole in her right eardrum. She was scared, but such a trooper. Unfortunately, the patch didn't work. We will continue keeping her ear dry with earplugs in the bath and pool. She will have another surgery at age 9. She prays every single night for her healing. It breaks my heart but we are so thankful for how healthy the girls both are.

Lucy's shenanigans started way before this, but they were in full effect. Inside drawers, cabinets, containers of all sorts is where you'd find her. She was on top of everything including the coffee table and dining room table. She was exhausting to keep up with. I think this is also the month we bought a baby gate. It changed my life. Praise God for baby gates! 

Please notice the way she got the bathroom stool and put it next to the chair so she could get all the way up onto the table. Hello, one year old, I was obviously not ready for you to be so crafty! 

September was the beginning of completely crazy, unmanageable schedules. We had weddings, festivities, events galore. We got to see some of our favorite people quite often, so that was wonderful.
I also started watching my nephew full time. I'm tired just remembering it all.

Onto October....

Friday, February 1, 2013

Sweet September

It's been a long time. That's what I said last time I posted, I'm pretty sure.

I have been out of rhythm for blogging and life in general. So- here's to a new rhythm. My old one just wasn't working for our circus family.

I'll have to catch up in stages. We have had some extremely busy months. September was full of stuff. Both girls had birthdays and all the festivities to go with it. We went on our first family vacation too.

Lucy Jane turned one. She took a few steps around her birthday and then stopped for a couple weeks. Since then she just got up and started walking around like it was nothing. I can't even believe how blessed I am to be her mama.

Emily Natalia turned seven. She had more celebrations for her birthday than anyone else. Heart waffle breakfast, ice cream party with girlfriends, Disneyland... You'd think this girl would be nothing but thrilled, right? Well, this year being her first birthday with us was hard. She longs to have her old life and it tends to magnify at special events and holidays. We continue on and hope for happy birthdays in the future.

This was Emily's first sight of Cinderella's castle. I love this expressive girl. 

Emily's favorite ride was the Matterhorn. We rode it one million times. 

We drove over to the beach during our trip so the girls could see the ocean for the first time. It was cold so we didn't swim except Cam. Emily dug holes and buried Grandpa Jer's feet.  Lucy and I were busy sitting on our blanket eating pretzels and warding off seagulls. Eventually the seagulls won but I'm pretty sure someone was taping it so I'm probably famous on youtube. Proud moment.

Let me tell you- these girls are built for road trips. They were both amazing. They were relaxed and happy for hours in the car both ways. They napped and played with toys. Dreams come true. 

Somewhere during this month she learned this gem of a skill. She has since mastered it.

September was full of things happening. There were many firsts with the girls and lots of fun. There was a lot of heartache too. After months of living with us, this was the first month Emily let it all soak in. She began processing her adoption and realizing that we are her new, forever family. Although that may sound happy and wonderful, for her it means saying goodbye to her former life and all those people. We still have visits and see them periodically, but that doesn't change how hard it is for her to be away from them. So, September had a lot of bitter moments in it as well. I know it's imperative for her to have those as she processes, but it certainly doesn't make it easy to watch and help.