2 Corinthians 12:9 "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness."

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

What a Day!

Monday.....What a day it was!

My husband and I woke up bright and early and braved rush hour traffic and rain to drive over 3 hours for several meetings regarding our adoption from foster care.  We left the house at 7:30am and finally returned home just after 10:30pm.

Because this child has not been placed with us, I will not be using his real name, nor give out any information about him due to confidentiality issues.  Let's just call him "the boy" or "him", etc.... Sounds impersonal, I know, but I'm not creative enough to come up with anything better than that!

So, we met with his teachers at his school, along with his social worker and his foster mom.  All 4 of us were waiting in the hallway for his teacher when we saw him walking down the hall with his class!  He said hi to his social worker and foster mom and made eye contact with us, but didn't seem to really notice us.  It was still nice to see him face to face.

The teacher meeting was informative.  We met with 4 of his teachers, so it gave us insight into how they provide services for his particular needs.  After that, we met with his therapist and learned a little more about him and the progress he has made in therapy.  We also were reminded that he would need a slow transition our home but that both his foster family and therapist would help with the transition.

After those meetings, we had a pleasant surprise!  We were able to go to his foster home and hang out with him for about an hour!  We were introduced as friends of his social worker and foster mom and we played with him and saw his room.  It was low key, but lots of fun!

We will be proceeding with adoption and have plans in the works for a return trip next month where we'll get to spend a few hours over 2 days with him.  Then we might be able to work it out for him to visit us with his foster parents sometime after that.

There were some tears in the meetings yesterday.....From one of his teachers, from his foster mom, his social worker and even one from me!  It is clear that these adults in his life love him and want the best for him and that is good for us to know.  He has his issues, as every child who has been through trauma does.  But we feel better prepared to address these issues when he joins our family.  No word on exactly when that would be, but more than likely not before the end of the school year.

Please continue to pray for our family as we go forward with the adoption.  Pray as well that God would prepare this young boy for the transition into our home, as he doesn't quite understand the concept of adoption and he loves his foster family!

We'll update more as we progress!


Thursday, February 23, 2012


My body held it together through our adoption Homestudy, Thanksgiving, our Latvian visitor's wonderful 4 week stay, Christmas, 2 kids birthdays, and my husband's 40th birthday and all the surprises that came along with it.

And then it figured out it was ok to collapse....

I've been sick for the last 6 days.

It started with a cold for a few days and just feeling generally lousy.  Then on Monday I felt horrible and since my husband was off anyway, I decided to take advantage of that and I stayed in bed all day.  By lunch time I was starting a fever and was achy all over and tired.  The fever only lasted until sometime over the night but Tuesday I was still feeling bad.  And since it was my husband's last day off before going back on shift, I figured I'd rest up again so that he wouldn't have to take any sick time later in the week (after all, why use any of his 1,800+ sick hours if you don't have to!).  

I thought I was getting better with all of that rest, but when I got back to "real" life on Wednesday and I was worn out!  It didn't help that I got maybe 4 hours of sleep the night before. It also didn't help that I had several friends going through very times and those situations were weighing on me.....  But I made it through the day, even getting to go to church in the evening.

So, I'm pretty sure I have a sinus infection.  I'll be going to the doctor tomorrow to find out for certain and see if there's anything more I can do to clear it up.  Hopefully I'll feel all better by Monday, when we have some very important adoption meetings we can't miss.

One good thing I've found with a sinus infection is that I can easily lose a few pounds!  Even with taking a decongestant consistently, I've got so much dripping mucus that I have little to no appetite and have to force myself to eat.  I don't like feeling rotten, but the side effect of losing a few pounds this week makes it bearable!

So, hopefully I'm on the up side of healing, can get some good meds, and more importantly I'm hoping that my husband doesn't get it.... he's fighting hard, but he's showing symptoms..... Maybe he'll have to give up a few of those 1,800 sick hours after all.....


Wednesday, February 15, 2012


This month was my husband's 40th birthday and we celebrated in a variety of ways.

I had decided a few months prior that I wanted to surprise him in some way.  I knew he didn't want a party, which was fine with me because I really didn't want to organize and host a party.

What I came up with was a series of surprises throughout the month.  This included things like basketball tickets to a local, but major college (given to us for FREE from a long time friend, thank you!) as well as some of his favorite foods: a 12 pack of Coke Zero (we don't drink a lot of soda in our house), a bag of Doritos (we don't eat a lot of name brand chips around here either.  Sometimes when my husband is working nights, we'll treat ourselves to a bag of Doritos but the kids and I end up eating the whole bag and my husband gets nothing so we thought he'd appreciate getting his own bag as a gift!)

We also gave him 40 Hershey Kisses one day (I put them in his lunch bag so he could be surprised when he packed his lunch that morning) and another day we put a bag with 40 hearts it in and on each heart we wrote something we thought of when we think of him, such as "courageous", "provider", etc.

On his actual birthday, we met him for lunch at Chick fil A and brought a few delicious cupcakes that my daughter's friend made for us.  That night, we had a special dinner that my husband picked out: Beef and Chicken Kabobs, marinated and grilled with loaded baked potatoes and more cupcakes for dessert.  We gave him 3 presents: a MacArthur Study Bible (in large print cause he's 40!), an American Flag to replace the old one we had hanging outside, and a coffee mug with pictures of important people in his life.  

The biggest and best surprise occurred the next day.  My husband came home from work early, at my request, not suspecting a thing..... We already had the car packed and when we all got in we just told him to start driving.... It wasn't too long before we had to tell him where we were going.... We were headed to Charleston, SC to visit our good friends!  We love going to see them and my husband had been asking for months when we were going back.  I knew there was no where else he'd rather be than with his very good friend and his family to celebrate this big birthday!

I'm a bit tired from Thanksgiving, Christmas, both kids' birthdays, completing our Homestudy, having 2 interviews about children to potentially adopt, all the while planning and executing these birthday surprises.  But it was also a lot of fun and I love being with our friends in Charleston too, so it was all worth it!

On a side note, my husband does NOT have to feel that he has to compete with my surprises for my 40th birthday next year.  All I want is to go on vacation somewhere with my family!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A Little Bit of Everything......

Wow, it's been quite a week....and it's only Tuesday morning!

First, my NY Giants won the Super Bowl in another thrilling, down to the final minute game against the Patriots.

Then on Monday we got a wonderful email from our social worker that we will move on to the next step in our adoption process.  At this point, that just means a few more meetings.  But it's enough progress where I've started a list of ALL we have to get done in the next few months to prepare.

In the middle of all of this GOOD news, my husband has been feeling lousy.... Normally that's not too big of a deal, but this week is his birthday and we have one last BIG surprise for him that will be ruined if he's sick!  So, he's using a few of those many sick hours he's accumulated over the years and staying in bed today in an attempt to get rid of those germs.

We also have several friends and acquaintances dealing with a variety of issues.... sickness, children being sick, decisions that need to be made, struggles in their marriage, various stages of the adoption journey..... So I find my mind in a near constant state of prayer.  That is a hard concept to understand sometimes.  It's not that I am constantly praying, but that my mind is focused on the fact that God knows ALL of these things going on not only in my family, but in the lives of those we know as well as those we don't know.  And he's ALWAYS working, even when things look really hard or it seems that there is no end in sight.

So, as you pray for our family's adoption journey, remember that there are prayer requests that you will never learn of but God is still working, regardless of whether or not we know the details!

* Speaking of details, we don't want to post many at this point since we are still far from a definite placement in our home.  All we'll say now is that we are hoping to adopt a young boy.... Be in prayer for him as well as for our family!


Wednesday, February 1, 2012

10 Things I Love About My Husband

This is my husband's birthday month.  He turns the BIG 4-0 in just a few days.  In our house, we celebrate more than just on your birth-DAY...... For the kids, we like to celebrate for a weekend or more, I try to get an entire week of celebrating for my birthday and for a BIG birthday such as 40, I think at least a half a month is in order!

We have a LOT of fun and surprises planned.  I'll have to blog about most of them after the fact.  But one thing we are doing is writing 40 things we (the kids and I) love and appreciate about husband/dad on red hearts.  We'll either put them in his lunch cooler to find one morning on his way to work, or we'll hide them throughout the house in places we know he'll look so it can be an ongoing surprise.  Either way, it's a way to celebrate the man we love!

So, here are 10 things that I love and appreciate about my husband!

  1. He is a wonderful PROVIDER: This may come as a shock to you, but Law Enforcement Officers do NOT make a lot of money!  Even with off duty work and a side job, some months are pretty tight.  My husband could've asked me to get a job to help with the budget, but he'd rather work more than he really should so that I can stay home and take care of the house, kids and him.  I often tell him that I was NOT cut out for a job outside the home (my personality, mostly, plus I don't like getting up in the morning!), so I am very thankful that he works hard to provide for our family!
  2.  He is a FAMILY man:  He's not the kind of guy to go golfing on his days off, even though he enjoys playing golf.  He doesn't come home from work and then go out with friends, even though he is well liked & has lots of friends.  He enjoys spending time with us & we appreciate that!
  3. He is CONSISTENT:  We often laugh at how his reaction is usually the same whether he's happy, sad, mad or frustrated.  He doesn't wear his emotions on his face.  The dictionary defines consistent as "constantly adhering to the same principles, course, form, etc".  That is a perfect way to describe my husband!
  4. He is HARDWORKING:  He is one of the most hardworking men I know at a job that is stressful, dangerous, has long hours and is often not appreciated.  He has worked some of the craziest shifts you can think of and has worked at least one 24 hour day straight and is often awake for 24 hours in a row when he begins night shift.  He often goes with less sleep than the little he gets in order to do something with us.  I remember a month about 7 years ago when he worked 30 out of 31 days.  I don't recommend that, but it just showed us how hard he is willing to work so that I can stay home with the kids.
  5. He is TRUSTWORTHY:  His actions match his words.  When he says it, he follows through with doing what he says.  Now, this doesn't happen 100% of the time, but I know that if my husband tells me something, it is the truth and I can rely on it.  I tell him often that I don't believe something just because someone says it, I look to see what they do.  If their actions are not consistent with their words, I don't trust them.  I don't have that problem with my husband.
  6. He is PATIENT:  Those who really know me , KNOW that my husband HAS to be a patient man!  And he IS!
  7. He is a HANDYMAN:  If anything in our house is broken, he can fix it!  If he doesn't know how, he will learn how.  I feel confident knowing that we are saving money by not paying for repairs or upgrades, that he is teaching our son how to take care of his house, & that he will work hard on his days off when sometimes I know he just wants to sit & rest!
  8. He is WELL LIKED:  Everyone likes my husband!  I can see why, because he has such great qualities!
  9. He is HUMBLE:  He is quick to say he's sorry, even when he KNOWS he's not the only one at fault.  He doesn't think he's better than anyone else and I rarely hear him criticize someone else.
  10. He is MY HUSBAND:  I love that he chose ME over every other woman in the world to marry.  Even though there are days I'd like to do over, times when I'm mad at him (and times when he's mad at me!), I wouldn't make any other decision than to marry him again!

We are looking forward to celebrating the 40 years of his life this month!