Friday, December 21, 2007

Merry Christmas!

We hope that this blog finds you happy and warm at your computer with a full belly and a great cup of cocoa! We feel extremely blessed and thankful for all of you as our friends and family, and equally thankful for the Internet and being able to keep in touch with you through the web....because life seems to be too hectic to catch up in real time!
To update you on happenings ....since November:

Our house has no front steps! But that is intentional....we needed to reset the limestone and repair the posts underneath the porch so that we don't have collapsing concrete. There is significant work being done on the fireplace (repairing brick and adding a liner) as well as demolition on one of the bathrooms. We have been given the date of March 1 for our expected completion, but we don't have any "rush" to get in by that time by our landlord (the town of Normal who purchased our property on Dec 5). I would like to get in by that date because April 1 is the week after spring break...and I want to relax on vacation...not be mentally gearing for a move! I promise to be more intentional during the Christmas holiday to get some pictures of the work being done on the house....I just forget to grab the camera!

Our adoption:
I haven't said much about this...because it seems like I've said the same thing for two years! But for all of goes. We submitted a dossier (your body, mind, soul, finances and life in a file) to The Peoples Republic of China on Feb 1 2005. It was "logged in" on Feb 26. That is our log in date...which is a huge day...because all of the baby referrals (basically the baby they matched to your dossier) are given out by those dates on the first of every month in a "batch" of dates. Currently they have referred babies up to the date Dec 14 or 15 of 2004. That looks like its really close....but they have been working on this year for the entire year! They currently are only referring one weeks worth of log in dates per month. So....if you project ahead at the current rate ( not accounting for any slow downs or holidays which BOTH are likely to happen including the Olympics in Beijing) that would put us at getting a referral in Sept/October of 2008. Its really depressing when you think about it, but we are trusting God with the timing and try to think about the babies waiting to be loved, and the many parents who are longing for one child of their own, and we have four that keep us hopping! We will update you here as time goes by if things show signs of speeding up or slowing down. I think perhaps God is giving me time to get rid of my carpool butt....
which leads to the latest with us...
Tom and I have been working out (voluntarily tortured) with a personal trainer for about two months....and are trying to eat healthier....tough to do when your dinner usually consists of school concessions at sporting events. No amazing biggest loser breakthroughs....YET! But I better feel good in a swimsuit this summer after all this pain!
Caila's cheerleading squad earned 10th place in the IESA Cheerleading Championship this past weekend...GO CYCLONES!
Nick had been playing 6th grade basketball this year....and is the man protecting the basket...must be because he is the tallest/biggest guy around, and he takes his job seriously!
Ben has also been playing basketball...but with a club. He never tires....I would love to see him on the floor with some retired NBA players...because he could make them dizzy with how fast he could dribble around and underneath them! He doesn't have the height...but he has speed!
Maren has been taking cheer classes at a local gymnastics club (she likes to be prepared) so that she can try out for cheerleading next year as a fifth grader (my baby is gonna be in 5th grade?).
She loves it. OH! She also had one of the lead roles in the Christmas program at school and played investigative reporter Jane Blonde (yes...blonde wig and all!). She was awesome...and I think really has a natural talent for drama(like we didn't already know that!).

Last....for all you dog lovers who love our's their news too!

Jayda...the matriarch pug...or Jayda potatah as I call her after "couch potato"....snores on the couch most days...has had trouble this year with mouth ulcers...poor thing, but currently is on an antibiotic and is feeling like a million bucks (we know this because she actually gets off the couch and barks when someone rings the doorbell now).

Snickers....the adorable (hilarious looking now) Yorkie has struggled with allergies this year that make her itch..hence the hilarious part...because she has scratched and bitten off almost all of her hair on her back legs....(only cuz she can reach the front ones!) She is still being treated...but it seems that when the hair finally grows back...she gets bad and in days looks like a bald chicken again...they really need to make pants for dogs!

Bella...the brainless pug. Gotta love her she is all heart...but really not very bright. She has the most energy of the bunch, and is also the one that requires the most parenting...she's alot like a defiant two year old.

Birkie..the backyard guard dog...has found her way into Ben's bed at much of watching the yard. Oh well..we're moving in a few months and the neighbors don't want her booming bark outside at 2am anyway.

Please bookmark the blog or submit your email address to subscribe so we can keep in touch. I would love to hear from all of you, and get your email addresses as well...cuz I know I don't have them! Have a restful blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Yes! We Are Here!

I havent forgotten about this blog...just hanging on to every healthy breath. This Mama had been taken out of commission for a week with the flu...and it has taken another week to get on my feet...only to be stung with a head cold. And yes...I have been taking my vitamins. I must have bad luck, and not enough sleep!
Things at the new house are humming along. Much of the tuckpointing has begun. I was going to take a picture of the house with the new fallen snow...but there arent any front steps right now! They are working on resetting them, and securing the porch. All of the materials have been ordered and we are watching things become "demolished" as stated in contractor speak. Which means when you walk inside one day...there might not be a toilet where you remembered one. They predict that we can move in around March 1st. I sure hope so..but then again...I have a lot to do until then!
On the other homefront, we had visitors for Maren's birthday, and she held a lead role in the Christmas play and did wonderful. Another actress amongst us..who knew! Ben and Nick have been busy with their basketball teams...and have been learning a lot about teamwork and losing with grace. Caila has been practicing like crazy for a statewide cheer competiton, and although they had an amazing performance, the judges were rather harsh and they didnt do as well as they had hoped. She begins volleyball practices for their season which begins in January, so she should be busy right up until the end of the school year.
Tom and I have resorted to a taxi service...well not entirely but we have thought about it. It a lot of driving around trying to keep up with thier schedules. I will post more later!