Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Tomorrow we leave on our first camping trip with Sierra!!! I can't wait. She loves our camper and can't wait to sleep in her camper bed!!! We are going to a place that we love with 2 lakes!! David has off the whole time because his boss is getting married and going on his honeymoon. I am sooo happy about that!!!! There will be lots of fishing for the guys and kayaking for Sierra and I, although she has her own fishing pole too!!! I don't know if I will read as much as I usually do but I don't care!!! I have waited a long time to go camping with her and tomorrow we are!!! We will return on July 2!!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

What is next?

So in all my excitement of yesterday (read previous post ) I failed to mention another funny occurance. On Sunday, I was the Reader. (the person who reads the Scripture) Daddy was busy preparing hotdogs for our after church picnic. So Sierra and I sat in the front pew right by the podium where I speak. I told her to stay in the seat and I showed her where I would be. 2 feet in front of her. Now when I had to do this once before, I had brought a small bag of Skittles which I gave her right when I had to get up. Did I remember them this time? NO!!! So I get up and I have to start with a prayer. So out of the corner of my eye, which is facing down mind you, I see Sierra slip out of the pew. OK I think, She is coming to stand by me. I can handle that. NOT!!! She climbs up on the piano bench and starts to play the piano!!!! Right in the middle of the prayer! I go and get her and continue the prayer. Mmmm, it doesn't take her 5 seconds to realize the mike is very cool. She leans foward and starts singing La la la la,So I stepped back, and continue reading the Scripture, very quickly!!! Afterwards everyone thought it was funny, but no one laughed at the time. I would have felt better if they did because funny was not one of the words that came to mind while it was happening. I know God was smiling down upon this sweet little girl who is now so comfortable in her surroundings. I know he believes his placement of her in our lives is a job well done!!! I have enjoyed telling the story because it truly is one of those moments one never forgets!!!Oh and after I told the social worker the story yesterday, Sierra told her I spanked her hand. I DID NOT SPANK HER HAND!!! I DID NOT SPANK ANYTHING!!!Not in church, not home, no where!!!
Here are some pictures of Sierra picking strawberries with me. Notice how clean her shirt and mouth is, this is the beginning.

This is a view from the fields. the barn in the distance is where I work on the weekends. It houses a fresh produce market and a petting zoo. Its a beautiful place!!!

This picture was taken after we arrived home. She is still eating strawberries, but she certainly isn't clean!!! I love kids in strawberry covered shirts!!!! And faces too!!!

Daddy took these pics while I was at work one weekend.

Monday, June 22, 2009


OK I am not doing too well right now!!! My social worker was scheduled to come tomorrow at 3:45 for Sierra's 6 month placement visit. I love our social worker. She is great, but still you want to pass muster. Those of you that really know me know that housekeeping is certainly not one of my strong suits. In fact I hate it. I would rather be outside any day or inside playing with Sierra than cleaning the house. So I kept putting it off. Today I had a plan . I will start upstairs and finish the downstairs tomorrow. I left at 2 to go and work at the school until 3:30. I got home at 3:50 and noticed a car in the driveway. Mmmmm who is this. Then she got out. IT WAS THE SOCIAL WORKER!!!!! ONE DAY EARLY!!!!!!! I wanted to get back in the car and RUN!!!!! But I didn't. I graciously invited her in and hoped she didn't notice the piles and the dog hair and the toys and everything. It was horrible. I felt like a very bad mother. Luckily I was able to get a hold of Scott who came home from where he was working. We did what we had to do but I hated it. I was totally embarrassed. She said she didn't come to see my housekeeping but.... The funny thing is, no lie, I had a dream that she came early when my house was a mess. I dreamt that last night. I was sooo glad to wake up and realize it was a dream. I know there is a lesson about waiting to the last minute and all that. And I don't like living in a messy house, so maybe this is what I needed. So a new leaf is being turned as I speak!!!!
PS Oh yeah!! Sierra told the social worker she has big boobies!!!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to all the great fathers out there. I have written lately about what a terrific father Scott is. I love seeing him and Sierra together. He has also been a great step father to my 3 sons. I am so lucky to have him as a husband and the father of our sweet little girl. She wished him a "Happy Dada's Day" the first thing this morning. All day yesterday we practiced "Happy Father's Day" but she said her own thing this morning. How cute!!!!
This day always makes me think of my own father. I was lucky to have one of the most amazing men for a father. He was ahead of his time. As a child growing up in the 60's and 70s I have many memories of my father helping out around the house. He helped with the cleaning, taking care of us, and he loved to cook. He was always involved and was a Boy Scout leader for many years. He instilled in me a love of nature which is still a part of who I am. Whenever one of my older boys calls me and says, Mom did you see the rainbow?, or Mom did you notice the beautiful sunset?, it reminds me of him. Even though they were young when he died, what he instilled in me is a part of my children. It reflects back into my eyes as apart of him. I see so much of my father in my children. And even though he has not met her, I will see my father reflected back to me through Sierra.
He also had a great sense of family and a love of God. He was one of 11 children born to my grandparents. My grandfather was a minister and a painter, and my grandmother was a painter also. My father was always very close to his siblings. Towards the end when my father was barely recognizing even me, I witnessed him breaking into a huge smile when the sister, who was closet in age to him, entered his hospital room and whispered hello in his ear. He knew who she was. They all had an incredible bond with each other. While my older children were growing up, after my father had died, we lived next door to my uncle, my father's brother. I felt blessed to have him so close to my boys growing up.
My father died way too young, a early victim of Parkinson's disease and early onset dementia. I miss him terribly and think of him often. I carry with me his life lessons and I know they have made me a better person!!!!!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Didn't notice right away!!!

So let's see, Sierra has been home for almost 5 months now. Ironically our very, very VERY long LOA wait was also 5 months. Some how I can not reconcile the 2 amounts of time!!! This 5 months has flown. The other 5 months?... NOT!!!!!! Anyway, about 3 weeks ago, I took Sierra to the farm where I work. They have a petting zoo where you can feed the animals. As Sierra was feeding the goats she yelled out, then held up her thumb and said "Mom, goat bit Sierra's thumb." When I first looked at her thumb I got scared. It looked funny. But she wasn't crying or anything. Then I realized that the goat did not hurt her, but there was a definite problem with her thumb. I could not believe I did not notice it before this. I asked Scott and all the boys if they had noticed it. Nope, no one had. You really only notice it if she holds her thumb up by itself. The pediatrician called it a trigger thumb and sent us to a hand surgeon. The surgeon said she was probably born with it and it would get worse if left alone. The only treatment is surgery. Her arm will be in a cast, just up past her elbow!!! We are planning on having it done in late Oct. early Nov. Since it is not an emergency( and it took me 4 months to even notice it) we would like to wait until our camping season is over and her language skills are even better. Although the surgery is minor, I hate the idea of her going under. I know many of your children have had major surgeries and I know this doesn't compare but it is something we were not expecting. And there was no mention of it in her paperwork from China!!!

Here you can notice it while she's eating popcorn. How did I not notice it before????

Friday, June 12, 2009

"Home" at Last!

Those who have adopted, especially older children, know that the road to attachment is not an easy or quick one. I will never forget, as long as I live, the anguished screaming that Sierra did on the day that we received her, exactly 5 months ago. Although that was the only time she did that I knew that she had great attachment to the place that had been her home for 3 years. Even though she seemed happy with us I had no doubt that if given a choice, in those early weeks and even months, that she would choose to go back to what was familiar to her and the people who were the only family she had ever known. We had to teach her how to hug. We watched as she slowly came to us when she was hurt. We stayed in her room when she went to sleep so she knew we were still there. I took a leave from work so that we could build the foundation she never had. And we told her over and over again how much we loved her and how glad we were that she was with us.
So the other night I put her in her crib. I told her "Sierra, Mama loves you ... FOREVER!" And she looked up at me and said something I also never will forget. "Mama, Sierra stay here. No go China. No bus (we traveled around China in a bus)" And then she said" Dada... Mama... Davin(that's how she says David).... and Sierra" Nothing else, but I knew what she meant. She was naming her family. The people who have now become the most important in her life. The people who live with her in her house. And the people, along with her older brothers, Tim and Paul, who have taken this precious little girl into their hearts and will indeed love her forever!!!

Jump roping in the kitchen!

Watering her tomato plants

Participating in the fairy parade at a friends fairy birthday party.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

You can see how it hit her nose and her eye at the same time!

Anybody recognize this toy?

Now the other eye!!!

Sierra had 2 eye injuries last week. The first one was the most serious and we are lucky it turned out the way it did. We found a boomerang type thin in the yard, in the bushes. It may have been the neighbors or it may have been one of the kids I baby sit for. Any way Scott threw it and we all watched it. Sierra ran a little ahead of us and wouldn't you know it came right back and hit her in the eye. Not only near her eye but it hit her eye ball. We caleed the pediatrician, by now its after 9:00 on a Saturday night. Her eye didn't look bad or even that red but I worry about the eyes. They said to bring her in first thing sunday morning. The doctor( not the one I usually use) put the dye in and said she had a small abrasion that was not over her cornea. He sent us home with no drops or anything. It was teary on Sunday but didn't seem to bother her. On Monday morning it actually looked better but by the afternoon her whole eye was turning pink. It looked like a really bad case of pink eye. So at 5:00 we were back at the doctores. It was infected but this time we went home with heavy duty antibiotic drops and an appontment the next afternoon to make sure they were working. Eye infections can get nasty quick. I had a frieind whose brother lost his eye at age 3 with in 24 hours of getting poked by a play broom!!!
Luckily when we went back on Tuesday it was much improved. I brought the toy in for the doctor to see as he was not happy with the design of it. He would like to knwo that they at least have a warning on the label that states that it should not be used with young children around. I have some research to so as the only thing that is written on the back is JARV or JARU . I am enclosing a picture.
On Wed. we stopped at the fire house to see Daddy and she fell against the dashbord of the fire truck she was sitting in. Some blood and a little cut VERY close to her eye but nothing serious! What a couple of days!!!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

A Wonderful Dad

As many of you know, Sierra is Scott's first child. When asked why I wanted to "start over' at almost age 50 one of my responses is ' I knew Scott would be a great Dad and I wanted him to experience fatherhood". (I also love parenting and wanted to do it for myself also. ) But back to Scott. I was right. He is an amazing father. He loves this little girl so much and it shows in everything he does. His face lights up the moment he sees her!! His patience with her is unmatched. Her well being always comes first. When I reminded him last week that if I was going to take another year of leave next year, I needed to get my letter in. His reply"write the letter". We are really missing my income. We don't make a ton of money to begin with and without my salary........., But Scott knows how important this time with Sierra is. He understands that it is important for her to have stability at this time. He knows we would have to pay for childcare, he is working 2 jobs right now. He comes home at 3:30, gives us hugs and kisses and then off to mowing lawns for a friends lawn business. Sometimes its until 8:00. He tries to limit it to 3 nights and Saturday mornings. Then of course I am working 6 hours a day on the weekends. But he is home then with Sierra. Its not perfect for us, but it is good for her!! I am blessed to have him for a husband and although there are times that I miss him terribly, I know that this sacrifice is worth it!!! So hopefully my leave will be approved and I won't have to go back to work until Sept. 2010!!! Thanks Scott, you are the best!!!!
Her are some of my favorite daddy pictures from uor trip to the zoo!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Some cute pics!

If you look closely you can see the caterpillar crawling up Sierra's wrist
Making friend's with Evan's guinea pig.

Playing Wii Fit

More Wii Fit!!!

My friend Theresa, who likes taking pictures as much as I do, took these of Sierra!