Friday, August 29, 2008

Cade has now officially entered into the stage that Jay and I affectionately refer to as the Snaggletooth Era. If you're not familiar with the time frame of this era it starts (according to us) when they loose a top front tooth and ends either when their head grows into their new teeth or they get braces to fix the teeth jutting out from weird places in their gums.

I know we're partial, but we think this snaggletooth is pretty cute.

P.S. I just noticed how bad my plant looks in the background of this picture. Looks like I better water it tonight!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Another First Grade Funny

Jay and I were talking about this before we left home this morning. I hadn't posted about it last week when it happened so I will today.

As you all know Cade had a pretty active summer - he played baseball, he spent several nights with his grandparents, he went to church camp, he fell off the monkey bars and got stitches, he went to Florida, he saw the Blue Angels, he saw dolphins in the Gulf, he saw the USS Alabama, he swam in the Gulf of Mexico, he saw jellyfish, etc. Not to sound like I'm bragging, but there probably weren't a whole lot of kids in his class who got to do what he did. So the evening of the first day of school he told us Mrs S asked all the kids what they did over break. Jay and I prepared ourselves - we knew he had a great story to tell, we figured Mrs S had to make him stop talking about the really great summer he had, we were sure he was excited about everything we had tried to do for him. So we asked and this is what he said......

"I told her mommy took me to Bass Pro"

So much for Florida. He only wanted to talk about what I did to kill some time when I took him to the eye doctor a few days before school started. That was his great summer memory. Jay and I thought it was a little embarrassing.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

How's School?

Since, as of last night Cade has been in school 5 days, you may be wondering how it's going. Here's how it's going:

Last night at bed time I was reading to him out of his Presidents Book. We were reading about President Harding and one of the lines was "he quit school at an early age". Cade's head shot up off his pillow and then he said "You mean we can quit school?" Things aren't looking good if he's only on the 5th day of his 1st grade year and the thought of quitting school is appealing to him.

Monday, August 25, 2008

First Day of School

School started last week so we now officially have a 1st grader living with us. According to Cade though, he's in 1st grade again. After being in 1st grade in Summer School he'd tell anyone who asked that he'd be in 1st grade again. He made it sound like he was repeating 1st grade. I hope that since school has finally started he'll quit saying that - I got tired of trying to correct what he meant.

As far as I know, the week was successful for both Jay and Cade. Last week only the parents had homework, but I think that's going to change this week. Last night I sat down to do my "homwork" and 30 minutes, a dozen papers and 3 checks later I was finally finished. One thing to make a mental note for those who don't have kids in school - make sure you have plenty of checks in your checkbook. I wrote a check to the PTO for dues, one to the teacher for snacks and one to the school for lunch. It took 3 checks to get one 48 inch 55 pound boy started in school. You'll also need plenty of envelopes. Each check had to be put in its own envelope with what is was for written on the front, along with Cade's name. It's a lot different than it was 25 years ago when dad would send me to the bus with a lunch check that had a 50/50 chance of actually being turned into the school. Most of the time mine never made it. This envelope in a folder system that is used now is much better. Cade's lunch checks have always been cashed - now if only the office staff at the high school would start a folder system......maybe I'd be more informed of what's going on with Jay at the high school......

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Struggles of Infertility

With everything that’s happened with Skyler and Colby this summer I feel guilty about this post. My problems are nothing compared to what these two little boys and their families have gone through. But this blog is about our journey to and through adoption including our infertility. - which means all of the good and all of the bad. I try to keep things light hearted and as funny as I can, but I also don’t want to ignore that other part of this, which is infertility. If I don’t touch on infertility occasionally I feel like I’m doing a disservice to myself and to the millions of other couples going though it.

I’ll be honest – I’m going though a very rough patch right now. The roughest I have been though in months. Since February things had gotten so much better. I had even posted earlier in the summer that I was doing ok, I was pretty content with where we were at in our lives. So this rough patch snuck up out of nowhere and has kind of blindsided me.

In the last three years I’ve done a lot of thinking and a lot of analyzing and last year I discovered this time of year was hard. There are several reasons that have contributed to that
· We officially decided we were ready for another baby around our vacation time in 2005. While vacations are nice, it’s another reminder that another one has come and gone and were still dealing with infertility
· We’ve been contacted by our agency that we need to update our homestudy, which includes fingerprinting and filling out financial information. I went to the big Picnic last weekend and saw several girls who were like 5 years old when I graduated walking around pregnant with #1, some even #2. I don’t think they had to be fingerprinted or account for every dollar they spend each month like Jay and I have to.
· Our first miscarriage happened Thanksgiving Day 2006. If I had stayed pregnant that baby would’ve been born in August. I should be having a 1st birthday party, not hunting down the balance of every account that we have. I won’t even get started on what the thought of Thanksgiving does to me. That's another post for another time
· Cade starts school. I always have in the back of my mind – Is this the first and last time I have a child starting XX grade?

Even though I don’t think about all of this on a daily basis it’s like my body knows. Last year it was like my body knew something wasn’t right. I went through a pretty rough time until I figured it out. I don’t know or care what experts in the field of grief might say – my heart knew I should’ve had a baby last August and my heart hurt. This month has also been a little tougher because I’ve had a kidney infection for most of the month and that really had me physically down. When I went to the doctor for it last week he also started talking about my blood pressure (which is high) and the weight gain I’ve had the last three years. I left the doctors office not only with my antibiotic but also a prescription for a weight loss drug and feeling totally frustrated and confused about what I should do.

So here I am – frustrated, depressed, angry, irritable –emotions that infertility brings out in all their glory. I’m back to avoiding every pregnant woman and baby section that I come across. I’ve been at a work conference the last few days and there was a pregnant person there and I completely ignored her the whole time. Last weekend we ran into some old college friends and they had a new baby that I didn’t know about. I physically could not speak to them. I tried, but all I could get out were one syllable words, mostly answers to her questions. I’ve been angry and I’ve yelled to Jay (not at him) that we’re always waiting on it to be in God’s time so why is it time for every one else and never for us? Am I proud of my behavior? Of course not, but I want to be honest to myself and everyone else. This is hard. There’s no way around it. It is the way it is. This whole thing has been a roller coaster ride and there are times I’m up and there are times I’m down. This is a down time. I know it will turn around eventually, but this time it feels a little different. Early on in our infertility I could remind myself of our other options when I got down. Right now we have no other viable options. We are coming to the end of our road and we’re stuck at the bus stop waiting.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Regional Winners

Remember last month how Jay and Lyle won an award for having the Outstanding Ag Ed Program in the state? Well last Friday they found out they also were the regional winners. Their region includes several states, I think up to Michigan and over to Ohio, but I'm not 100% on that. Lyle and Jay will be headed to the NAAE convention in Charlotte, NC the first part of December. We don't know if Jania and I will be going with them or not. Jay and Lyle's trip will be paid for, so I think they were hatching a plan for us to go along with we'll see.

Here is the link where you can read about their program on the NAAE website: Lyle and Jay

Monday, August 11, 2008

Adoption Update

Here's the latest in the adoption world - in the last couple of weeks we were asked about having our profile shown in 4 different situations which were the following:
Schizencephally on left frontal lobe
and extensive drug/alcohol abuse

The first three were conditions with the brain that we couldn't find enough information about to make us feel like these were conditions we were willing to take on. The last one just had too much alcohol use. According to research and talking with other adoptive parents alcohol use is much more harmful than drug use. To be honest, all of these things scared us. So for those of you who believed (before becoming educated by our blog :) ) that adoption was easy or hear people say they don't understand why we can't get a baby quicker there are so many available - just let them know how hard these decisions are to make.

This weekend we were joking about baby names with Cade. For some reason Jay has started calling Cade Larry. None of us are sure where it came from, it started sometime around our vacation. I told Cade that I thought we were going to name our baby Larry. Cade got a little ticked because that's not the name he wants. He informed us that the name was his decision to make, since he has waited a long time for a brother he will be the one deciding on the name. So I asked him what he would name a girl. He let out a big exasperated sigh and told me since I was a girl I would name a girl baby and he and daddy would take care of the name for a boy baby. Even though we were joking it made Jay and I a little sad. Even Cade is starting to notice the wait. That is what hurts my heart the most about all of this - Cade wants a sibling so badly and we can't do anything about it. He used to ask us how many years there would be between him and his brother/sister. He wouldn't settle for "I don't know" so we said probably 7. He's closing in on 6 1/2. I hope we were too far off on our guesstimate.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Charlie Update

If you've been missing your weekly dose of Charlie stories that's because we didn't have Charlie the entire month of July. He spent some quality time with MeMo and Papa Jim and Jacie the Border Collie. I think it was a nice little break for Jay. Charlie came home last Saturday, while I was in Springfield. Jay called me that afternoon and asked me to give Charlie some water when I got home. He said that the RED bucket that we normally use looked like it had something strange growing in it, so Jay told me to use the GREEN bucket. The buckets are identical, just different colors. So I haul the GREEN bucket out to his pen and Charlie proceeds to dump it out. It wasn't an accident, I watched him take his paw and tip it over. So I refill the bucket and the same thing happened. I went inside and told Charity and she thought maybe Charlie was hot. I went back out and refilled the bucket and tried pouring water on the dog. I'm sure Charlie was thinking "what the heck". "This lady hasn't seen me in a month and she's pouring water on me". He ran from the water, so I don't really think he wanted it poured on him. As soon as I turned my back he tipped the bucket over for a 3rd time. I was all done with the dog. I called Jay and told him he needed to check on Charlie when he got home because I wasn't messing with him anymore. Jay got home and he filled up the moldy RED bucket and Charlie didn't dump it over. The only thing I could come up with was that he somehow doesn't like the color GREEN. Sunday afternoon we went to Jim and Sharon's and guess what color of bucket Charlie had been using? RED. I thought dog's were colorblind. Can they see colors? I've seen Charlie eat some pretty disgusting things before, why would the color of his water bucket matter?

Does anyone want a hyper-active Welsh Corgi? We're offering free shipping for the month of August. I think Charlie would do very well in Kansas or Viriginia..... or the other option is that we have a wedding coming up and we haven't purchased Terry and Megan a gift yet..... I'll even throw in the moldy RED water bucket.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The VBS That Wouldn't Quit

Yesterday I remembered a line from Christmas Vacation with Chevy Chase. It’s when Clark realizes that the envelope he’s holding is an enrollment in the jelly of the month club instead of the Christmas bonus he was counting on. Do you remember what Eddie says? “Clark, that’s the gift that keeps on giving”.

The reason why this popped in my mind yesterday was in relation to VBS. There are at least 4 families from church that were sick yesterday. Jay and I were lucky enough to be one of those families. Cade had gone home with Papa Kerry and they are doing fine. I don’t think it’s something we ate, but maybe a combination of stress and heat? Whatever it is, it hasn’t been enjoyable.

As the VBS directors, Jay and I hoped that everyone who had a part in VBS would leave with their lives touched somehow. The stomach bug was definitely not at all what we had in mind. Yes, VBS has been the gift that keeps on giving for our family this year.

Here are some pictures from Sunday. We had our program during our regular church time, which worked out great. After church we had a BBQ and then a pie auction for the adults. The money from the pie auction went to our missions for the week. You could tell everyone had a good time that afternoon.

Monday, August 4, 2008

The day that we got back from our vacation Jay went out and bought a local paper. There was an ad in there for a fundraiser for one of Cade's classmates & ball team members. Right after babseball season he was diagoised with Lymphoblastic Lymphoma. He's been at St Judes since July 29. He and Skyler, who are the same age, were at St Judes at the same time. I hadn't posted anything earlier, because I just couldn't think about it at the time. I feel so selfish for saying that because how I feel is nothing compared to what Skyler's family and now Colby's family are going through. I can't even think of a title for this post, so I'm leaving it blank. A couple of weeks ago The Jonas Brothers, Miranda Cosgrove and Angus T Jones visited St Judes. In the first part of this video, when the Jonas Brothers are waling in the hospital Colby and his mom are in it. Colby is the first kid, wearing a blue shirt. He's got a mohawk and is wearing a face mask. A little further in the video you can see some shots of the Target House, which is where Skyler and his family stayed while they were at St Judes. This video his a big reminder to keep all of these kids and their families in your prayers.

Friday, August 1, 2008

One Down....

Our first night of VBS went great. We had 20 kids there, which is more than double what we had last year. I was so excited when I saw how many were there. Jay is teaching the 5 year olds thru 2nd grade and he had the biggest group with 10. Poor guy, he had the biggest group and he was the only one to have a classroom that wasn't air conditioned, but he said it wasn't too bad. Really the whole church was hot last night so it didn't matter if you were in the A/C part or not. Thanks to Jim and Sharon we had some live chickens in the 2-4 year old classroom and they were a big hit. All of the kids were looking them over - hopefully they'll survive until Sunday. Here are a few pictures. Everything went so fast I didn' t have a chance to take many. I didn 't even get any of Cade...I know, bad mom.

Craft Time for the 2-4 year olds. Avery didn't have much interest in stuffing her pillows

The 3rd-5th grade classroom a/k/a The Barnyard

The 2-4 year old classroom a/k/a The Chicken Coop, complete with real chickens and the real chicken coop smell.