This is the ongoing story of faith, love and family as we walk through this life with 3 sons, one daughter, one daughter in law and one grandson

Thursday, December 29, 2005


I have been thinking alot lately about how much my life has changed in the past 12 months. A year ago McGyver and I made the decision to adopt. 6 months ago our paperwork was logged in in China and I was anxiously anticipating a December gift of Dreamsicle's referral. December is now over and I think about how long the past 6 months has seemed in many ways, and dread the next 5-6 months that lay ahead of us. We received word today from our adoption agency that referrals for January will be through April 20th. I really should know by now that the information floating around on the message boards really is nothing more than rumours. Remember when you were young and played telephone? Or how when you were a teenager your best friend would tell you a secret, swear you to secrecy, you would tell someone else and add a little something to the story and swear that person to secrecy who would tell someone else with another lil' something added when they told the next person and before you knew it what started out as Julie telling Ashley that she made out with Bobby making its way back to Julie that she is now pregnant with twins from her best friends fathers second cousin on her mothers side? Well the message boards are alot like that. They have all been reporting that this next batch of referrals was sure to include at least through May 10th and that the CCAA would certainly send out another batch of referrals at the end of January as well because that is what they did for the past couple of years. Welllllllll, the word we got directly from our adoption agency is that the referrals will be through April 20-long way from May 10th, huh? And the thing that I think people seem to forget is that nothing is the same as it has been. This time last year people were still getting their referrals 6 months after being logged in. Not the case anymore. Our adoption agency has changed its expected wait time from 6 months to 8-9 months but honestly I think that the people in the late May/June/July cycle will be more inclined to see an 11-12 month wait. If the people who will be receiving their referrals next week only consist of those logged in through April 20th just doing some simple math will show that we have a good 5-6 more months of waiting on our hands. Some days I think that as long as I stay busy the time should go by fairly quickly but there are times, especially in the early morning hours when I am the only one awake, that I sit on my couch with my cup of coffee and get misty eyed. I think about the fact that this time of day would be mine and Dreamsicle's to share together, just the two of us. She is alive, she is out there, somewhere, waiting-while I sit half a world away and wait as well...

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Christmas!

We celebrated Christmas with Genious, Princess and Pixie yesterday morning-everyone opened their stockings (except me, more on that later) and we exchanged our gifts with them. It was a great morning. The afternoon saw the boys scattered to hither and yon as they attended Christmas-y celebrations with their girlfriends and their families. McGyver told me that he had forgotten to pack my stocking so I was expecting a stocking full o' goodies this morning. That's not quite what happened. We got up this morning, I make my way downstairs to make coffee and see that my stocking has something sticking out of it so I start to smile. The boys all wake up and we gather in the living room to exchange the rest of our gifts. Before we open anything McGyver tells us to take a look around the room and remember this moment because this is the last time our family will look like this. Next year we will definately have Dreamsicle and we may (the Lord willing) have Chester home but odds are that we will not. I then proceed to take the gift that was sticking out of my stocking out and open it-a gift certificate to the mall-great start! I reach my hand in to get the next item and pull out.....peanuts! Thinking that this was a joke I reach in further and pull out....a bottle of coke! I turn to McGyver with a quizzical look on my face and he proceeds to turn red while telling me that he forgot to get stuff for my stocking and was going to use the (insert here the fact that I have not opened any of my gifts, just working on the stocking at this point so I have no idea what any of my gifts are) boys IPOD they got me as a substitute. As soon as he said IPOD U*Haul turns white, Chester just stares at him and X*Boy says-"way to go Dad-thanks". McGyver turned more shades of red than I have ever seen him as he realized that he had just told me what the boys had given me as a gift. Knowing what was in the box didn't curb my enthusiasm as I ripped open the box and my excitement gave McGyver a moment to regain his composure (and his normal color). We proceeded to have a terrific time opening our gifts, made our way to church and spent the afternoon at G's house (my boys name for their grandmother). McGyver and I are now home, so full that we can barely move. Even though my tummy is full, it is nothing compared to the fullness in my heart.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


I have a bunch of non related stuff swirling around in my head today. Random thoughts, observations, etc. Like....

How thankful I am that I am blessed with such a way cool extended family. Yesterday in the mail I received a nice holiday letter with pictures of my cousin, her husband and her son and a CD of Chinese childrens songs. Beautiful family. My cousin's husband is a GENIOUS when it comes to all things Asian related and they thoughtfully included the english translation of the song titles. Today I have spent my day learning the words to such snappy tunes as "Gum, Gum, Gum, Pancakes" and "Careful The Stove Is Hot". How fun is that?

We had our office Christmas party yesterday. I received a beautiful mirror for Dreamsicle's room. It is custom made and has a variety of items that actually stick to the frame of the mirror (they are magnetized). Things like stars, the sun, a frog and the word "dream" that are moveable. Way, way cool. One of the girls I work with made me a diaper wreath that had all of the little things from my baby registry attached to it. I was so touched. It was like I was having a baby shower for Christmas! Sweetie peas those girls are.

I often wonder how many people actually visit this site. I know that most of my family visits and alot of my friends as well but I rarely get comments. Why is that? My family is anything but shy in real life so I am issuing a challenge-I'm opening up the blog to topics that you want to know more about-anyone up to taking that challenge?

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Domestic Gawdess

I think I was abducted by aliens last Friday and Martha Stewart is now living inside my body. When my boys were young, I used to be a baking, cooking machine. Then life got in the way. The boys became self sufficient, my job continued to make greater and greater demands on my time and somehow I stopped baking altogether. The boys have had a running joke for the past couple of years that the favorite dinnertime meal here in the McGyver household is "Find Something". Last Friday on my way home from work my car found its way to the grocery store and before I even realized it my shopping cart was filled with flour, sugar and other assorted baking staples. I began a marathon baking session on Friday night that lasted in to the wee hours of the night. By the time the rest of the family woke up on Saturday morning they were greeted with piles of cookies. 5 different kinds. Saturday morning I started baking again. We are now surrounded with 8 different kinds of cookies and I'm not done yet. I've got a roast in the oven for dinner so the baking extravangaza is on a temporary hiatus until the oven becomes free. There is so much sugar available in this house right now that we are all speaking fast and can't seem to sit down for long, sure hope we can sleep tonight.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Proud mom moment

As I continue to enjoy my son I thought I would post his pic. All of my family IRL will be happy to see this! So the lowdown on what happens next with him for the fam's info....Chester will go back to Camp Pendleton for 3 weeks of training then will proceed to Fort Knox KY for his training (they call it "school")in tanks. This school will last a couple of months. During his training time in KY he will have weekends free so you can bet that McGyver and I will be making some road trips in the near future to spend as much time with him as we can. Not certain where his final destination will be after he finishes school but I'll worry about that when the time comes. While we were in California with Chester we had the opportunity to do some serious retail damage on base. That was fun-even picked up a shirt for Dreamsicle that reads "My brother is a Marine". You can bet I will carry on this retail tradition once Chester gets to Kentucky. He will be receiving his training on an Army base but not the one his cousin is on (thought I would answer that question for the family members who probably had that pop into their head) so I'll do some comparison shopping-Marine base against Army base-hmmmm could be interesting!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Chester's Home

I am sitting here writing this post after waking up with all 3 of my boys here for the first time in months. What a great feeling! Our trip had its share of drama, beginning with our initial flight to California. The gate agent started the boarding process by letting us know that there was a mechanical issue with the plane that should just take a minute to fix. Once we have all boarded the plane the pilot comes over the loud speaker to inform us that "he doesn't like this airplane" and that we have not one, but two mechanical issues that do not appear to be able to be resolved. After making that announcement he informs us that it is up to him whether or not he feels comfortable flying the plane in its current condition and since the weather is good, we are going to attempt the flight. We did eventually make it to California in one piece thank goodness. After we landed we checked into our hotel and then hit the San Diego Zoo. We spent the afternoon with the Lions and Tigers and Bears then headed to the mall to do some shopping. Once we made it back to the hotel that evening our eyes were shut shortly after our heads hit the pillows. We woke up early the next morning and arrived at MCRD in time to see the recruits practicing for the days events. We couldn't pick Chester out because of the distance but it felt great just knowing he was out there on the parade deck somewhere. Later in the morning the recruits all line up for a 4 mile "motivational run". This is the first time that you are actually allowed to be close enough to your recruit that you can see him. They stand in front of you for about 5 minutes while you are allowed to cheer for them before they start their run. Unfortunately, Princess and I are so short that the tall people in front of us blocked our view. McGyver being the thinker that he is finally knew that I was going to crawl out of my skin if I didn't get to see my son so he picked me up and held me in the air so that I was literally head and shoulders above the crowd. I scanned the recruits and finally laid eyes on my son. The tears started and kept coming for the next 5 minutes. He set me down then lifted Princess up so that she could see her man as well. After the run the recruits went to the parade deck where they were awarded the eagle,globe and anchor. This ceremony represents the moment when these guys are no longer considered recruits but officially become marines. After this ceremony we were able to spend 5 hours on base with Chester. I couldn't take my eyes off of him. He left our home a boy and there was a man standing in front of me. The transformation was incredible. We went back to the hotel that evening, ordered pizza and just hung out counting down the hours until we would actually have Chester with us. Leaving him on base that evening was difficult but I knew I would have him the following day. The next morning we experienced his graduation ceremony . Words cannot describe the ceremony. It was incredible. After the graduation ceremony Chester was able to finally leave the base for the first time in 3 months. Where does every new Marine want to go after graduation? Disneyland! We loaded up all of his gear and headed to Disney. We spent an enjoyable afternoon and evening there where many, many people approached Chester and told him thank you for his decision to become a Marine. Watching these exchanges was somewhat surreal for me but filled me with pride. (The worry will come later, right now I'm just going to enjoy him while he is here). We left to come back home yesterday and arrived early yesterday evening. Chester was suprised to see a HUGE Welcome Home banner affixed to trees near the entrance of our driveway and was blown away when he walked into the house and found all of his friends there waiting for him. McGyver had videotaped the graduation ceremony and everyone wanted to watch it so we popped the tape in for everyone's viewing pleasure. About half way through the tape Chester asked McGyver why he was taping Gomez. It turns out that McGyver taped the wrong Marine for half of the ceremony! In McGyver's defense-during this ceremony the Marines are a fair distance away, they have their "covers" (hats) pulled low on their heads and both Chester and Gomez were wearing the famous Marine Corps issued glasses. So we have some great video of a kid named Gomez and not so much of Chester. This is just the kind of thing that happens in my family so all we can do is laugh about it. This morning I am sitting here enjoying a cup of coffee, updating my blog and listening to the sound of Chester rec0unting his boot camp stories to his brothers. Life doesn't get much better than this.

Monday, December 05, 2005

And We Are Off!

Tomorrow we leave for San Diego. Land of moderate temperatures and little rain (oh how I hope to be basking in moderate temperatures and little rain since our forecast is calling for 8 inches of snow tonight!) Wednesday Princess, McGyver and I will be traipsing our way merrily through the San Diego Zoo. On Thursday at 8:00 am I will finally lay eyes on my Chester for the first time in 3 1/2 months! I will give you all an update after we fly home with him this weekend but suffice it to say that I am not wearing any button down shirts (the buttons might pop off) for the next few days since my chest is swelling with pride at the fact that my son will graduate from boot camp on Friday and will then be considered a United States Marine! Can you tell how excited and proud I am by the use of many exclamation points in this post?! Woo-Hoo, he made it!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Welcome to Klutzville

Today has already proven to be a challenge for me and it is only 10:00 am. I always keep a glass of water at my desk and for some reason I placed it between my arms while I was working on my computer. I went to grab a file at the edge of my desk and just knocked over an entire glass full of water onto my desk, my body and the floor. Of course it had to be loaded with ice as well so that everyone who works just outside of my office could hear the exhilarating rush of water and ice cubes as it went sailing out of the glass and onto the floor. Earlier this morning I decided to change the decor in my office which meant standing on a chair to remove something from a high shelf. Sounded like a great plan until I realized that the chair I had chosen to stand on had wheels. When did I realize this? When I was reaching far, far away from my body and the chair started rolling in the opposite direction. Needless to say, I needed to call for assistance to wheel my chair back into a reasonable position in order for me to keep from becoming the newest Cirque de Soleil troupe member. I never seem to be able to perform my daring feats of klutziness when I am alone. For some reason I must have an audience. I just had to ask if anyone was going to be ordering lunch so that I could place an order, I'm afraid my wet pants might freeze to my legs if I attempted to go outside right now.

Happy Birthday Angel Baby

Today is not only Chester's birthday but Angel Baby's as well. I don't often talk about Angel Baby on this blog but for some reason today I feel like I should honor him and his life.
Angel Baby and Chester were born on this day in 1986. I carried these boys full term. Angel Baby weighed 7lbs 5 oz and Chester weighed 7lbs when they were delivered. Big healthy babies. From the moment that we brought these guys home from the hospital our house crackled with energy. They were on the same schedule so they did everything together. We had them sleep in separate cribs but the ends of their cribs touched and every morning when I would walk into their room to get them ready for the day I would find both of their little bodies scrunched at the ends of their cribs with their hands in each other's cribs, touching. They used to love spending time in their swings as long as the swings were facing each other. If we timed it so that both of the swings would be on the same swing pattern they would laugh at each other every time the swings got close to each other. Angel Baby and Chester were both snugglers. They loved to be held and would burrow into my shoulder like they just couldn't be close enough. Unfortunately I don't have alot of stories to tell about Angel Baby because he only graced us with his presence for 3 1/2 months. He died from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome on March 24, 1987. So today we honor Angel Baby. As difficult as the years without him have been, we choose to remember his birth with joy. Happy Birthday my sweet boy.

A Chesterless Birthday

Today is Chester's birthday. In honor of this day we will be holding a birthday celebration sans Chester. He is still in boot camp. In 5 days McGyver, Princess and I will be winging our way half way across the country to see this man we love so dearly but in the mean time, we will celebrate this day in honor of him. Chester came into this world on December 2nd 1986. He initially had to wait to make an entrance until his identical twin brother-Angel Baby made his presence known. Three minutes after Angel Baby arrived, Chester showed up. From that moment on, our lives have never been the same. Before Angel Baby and Chester were born, there were three of us. McGyver, X*Boy and me. X*Boy was such an easy baby and transitioned quite nicely into a toddler. Life was pretty stable and comfortable for us. With the addition of the twins our lives were filled with an energy that wasn't there before their arrival. Chester exudes a restless kind of energy even sitting still. When he was little he used to have quite a bit of trouble sitting still. One Sunday at church we were taking communion in the pews. Chester ever so carefully took his little glass of grape juice with me quietly reminding him that this was a time to show reverence, to pray silently, and to sit still. Imagine my surprise when I opened my eyes after praying to see Chester, eyes shut tight, little lips moving silently, holding his whole body tight and nothing moving but the glass. Not enough to make the juice spill, just enough to make it move. I sometimes wonder if that was what he was praying for-please don't let me spill this juice, please don't let me spill this juice..When he was in 3rd grade his teacher tried to demand that we give him Rital*in. We had him tested for ADD and he was found to just be an energetic little boy-no meds for him but I wonder if he was the reason that she retired shortly after he moved up to fourth grade. He has always been a dare devil. The kid has never met a roller coaster he didn't like or a hill that couldn't be conquered on a snow board. Chester has such a huge heart. He loves his mama and is not afraid to show it. He is emotionally strong and stable. He is committed to his career choice and if I know my Chester, he has probably helped many of the recruits with his positive attitude and ability to make people laugh. Speaking of laughing-this kid can make me laugh like no one else. He has a great sense of humour. So we will raise our glasses today in honor of Chester and then celebrate like heck with him once we get him home in a week.

About Me

I am a Christian woman, the wife of an outdoorsman and mom to a computer loving twenty something guy, a Marine, a Sailor and a three year old Princess who rules the roost and has all of us wrapped around her little finger. Add into the mix a daughter in love and the cutest grandson in the world and you have our big old house of love