Friday, February 26, 2010

Life Goals

Goals Achieved:

There are some things that I've managed to check off my life "to do" list so far. I've tried out college, run my own business, worked at the same company with my husband, adopted two children and become a foster mom, led someone to Christ, taught classes, met Captain Kirk, performed in a play, seen the White House, and played in a band post high school.

Future Goals:

There are also still some things that remain on my life "to do" list that I hope to accomplish some day in the not-too-distant future. I'd like to take a trip to Europe, visit Ireland, walk in an actual castle, sing a duet with my husband during offering at church, work with teenagers in some way, work at a library or bookstore, complete a teaching degree, run a group home for kids, adopt a teenager, completely pay off my house and be totally debt free, teach English as a second language, and write a book.

Not Likely, but Fun Dreams:

On my "ain't gonna happen, but wouldn't it be cool" list there are a few things. I'd like to be on t.v. even if it's just a 2 minute interview on the news for something. I'd love to do talk radio. I've always thought that I read aloud well and would like to be the person who records books on tape. It would also be cool to be a proof reader for sci-fi/fantasy books. I'd like to take a 50 state tour of the U.S. for a year with my husband and kids while "road schooling" in an R.V. rather than home schooling. I'd like a chance to really use the sign language and Spanish I've learned in a useful way somehow, perhaps by parenting a deaf child or teaching English classes on an extended mission trip to Mexico.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Ballet: Beauty & The Beast

I took Danya, Gloria, and Brianna to see Beauty & the Beast at the ballet in Denver. We went with a group from their Friday school. It was absolutely beautiful.

The girls seemed fascinated, and it helped that they were familiar with the basic story. This version wasn't exactly the same as the Disney movie, but it had the same bones.

Gloria couldn't find her jacket when it was time to leave. That turned out to be a blessing in disguise. When we went back to search the floor where we had been sitting I found my wallet. I hadn't even noticed that it was missing. Eventually we found her jacket on the third floor next to the statues of the ballerinas.

While we were there, Daniel took the younger kids to the Denver Children's Museum. He said that "Valentine" was so excited that she buzzed from one activity to the next. Her big sister was back in school today, so she missed out on all the fun. Valentine and Captain Kirk start school tomorrow.

Today there were several bus loads of kids from the Denver public schools at the ballet with us. It was so chaotic! When I was walking down to the first floor at the end of the first intermission the music was starting and the lights were flashing on and off to signal everyone to return to their seats. I came across a whole class of kids who were asking what it meant and none of their teachers knew. The teachers thought maybe it was a power outage. I had to explain it to them and they didn't believe me at first. That must have been par for the course, because when the second act was actually beginning half the theater was still empty and kids were streaming in looking for their seats. I was really proud of our group of homeschoolers today.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Breaking the Limit

The standard rule in our county is that you can only have eight kids under the age of eighteen in a foster home. That rule can be broken, though, if they are trying to keep a large sibling group together. We got to break the limit for our first time ever this week when our newest foster daughter, "Queen Bee", came to live with us so that she could be with her younger twin siblings. We're calling the 6 year old twins "Captain Kirk" and "Valentine". They are part of a sibling group of eight kids. "Queen Bee" is the oldest of them and had been separated from her sibs.

We're really glad to have them here. They are all great kids and it's been fun having such a full house again. It's still up in the air on how long they will be with us, but we're enjoying it while it lasts. We've also decided to change our foster home status back to "on going" instead of "emergency placement" because we didn't like the new policy that says kids can only be in an emergency home for 30 days. It seems unrealistic and needlessly cruel to yank the kids from home to home like that.

So far they've gotten to celebrate Katie's birthday with us and today they came to church with us. I'm hoping to bring "Queen Bee" to the youth group on Thursday night so that she can make some friends her age. It's got to be hard being surrounded by so many younger kids all the time. Tomorrow we'll work on getting them all enrolled in school.

*NOTE: I've also covered the face of my friend's baby girl since she doesn't want her picture posted on the internet on a public blog.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Katie's Butterfly Birthday

Katie celebrated her first birthday today with a butterfly party. She loved the butterflies strung across the living room and kitchen. Daniel thought it was funny that we were decorating the house in butterflies and flowers while outside everything is white from the snow that's been falling for days.

The kids did a good job on everything. The younger kids made the cupcakes and the older ones helped decorate them with butterflies made out of icing and strawberry whoppers. We even found little tiny confetti pieces that spelled "Katie" to sprinkle on the table cloth. The younger kids also got a kick out of putting butterfly window clings on the windows.

Katie got pretty new clothes, bath toys, a "Little People" nativity set, a musical learning jewelry box, and a musical glow worm for her birthday. Her favorite thing, though, wasn't a present at all. We played praise and worship music on the CD player. She danced and would scream at it if the song ended until the next one started. She'd even hug the whole thing like she was telling us that it was hers and we'd better not touch it. It was cute in a narcissistic one year old kind of way. Her "best friend", Elizabeth, came to her party and was a bit overwhelmed with how many kids are in the house. She loved the strawberry cupcakes and had fun with the balloons. It was a good first birthday.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Movie Monster

February Photos


We visited my friend, Brandy, again on Monday morning. This time Daniel was able to come with me. The kids had a good time and things were less crazy because they could play in the back yard. The only difficult part was that Brandy has three extremely large dogs, a St. Bernard and two others. My kids were scared and were afraid to even be near them.

Brandy seemed to be recovering well from her surgery. We've been praying for her and her baby all week. It's reminding me of the miscarriages we went through before having Kevin. I'm definitely glad we aren't planning any more babies. Instead I'll just make sure I get plenty of chances to snuggle other people's babies.

Bucket Wash

The hose is frozen solid. So we washed our vehicles with buckets full of water. We had to run back and forth into the house to get bucket after bucket full. I only got the white van and the car done, though.

Then Daniel decided to "help" by coming over and kicking frozen ice off the ground next to where I was working. Hit me right in the eye. End of car wash.

Birthday Blow Out

The boys both got invited to their friend, Cole's birthday party at Chick Fila. It was a huge party and they had a great time playing in the tunnels and running around with the other little folks.

Daniel took the kids because I was simply exhausted. The day before we'd spent running around from doctor's office, to hospital, and back dealing with Brianna's broken arm. Then Saturday morning I spent at our friends, the Rushton's, house. Brandy is recovering from surgery and wanted some company. But the whole morning was crazy and I'm not used to going places without Daniel.

I guess since Daniel is planning to take as much overtime at work as he can, I'd better get used to dealing with the chaos all on my own more often. But this time Daniel took the boys and Katie to the party. The other kids were very sweet with Katie. Shane's "twin", Samuel, tried to help her in the tunnels. It would be so much simpler if she would just learn to crawl.

Broken Kid

Well, I did say that I needed Danya to take a picture of Brianna's splint. They interpreted that request to mean that I would like a staged picture recreating the accident scene.

Brianna had done a flip over the side of her bunk bed while hanging off the top trying to talk to Kevin on Friday morning. She was telling him to get out of her room because she needed to get dressed for her Friday school.

I knew one of my kids would, at some point, break a bone. I wish it hadn't been Brianna since she's already broken her other arm before we met her. I sort of assumed it would be one of the boys, probably Shane. And this wasn't the picture I had in mind, but she is becoming a good little actress. I'm sure that eventually we'll laugh about this... just not any time soon.

Derby Build Day

Daniel and the oldest girls went to our church for "build day" where they got to use tools and paints to work on their AWANA Derby cars. They still haven't finished them and the race is in two day! Eek!