Monday, April 25, 2011

Since my Last Post...

We had our homestudy interview
We attended our homestudy class
I cleaned like a crazy woman
We had the home visit portion of our homestudy
Ben and I (mostly I) built a cardboard city for Kindermusik
Matt successfully pulled off a surprise 30th birthday party for me
And last but not least, we spent Easter weekend with lots of family

Whew! It was a busy couple of weeks!

Hopefully within a month or so our homestudy report and our bio will be complete and we will officially be active with our agency. We are SO excited to bring another baby into our family! I think I'm still in a little bit of shock over how quickly everything went after we registered with our agency. I can so easily get into this mode of moving quickly and forget that we may very well have to wait a while before we are chosen by a birth family, but I know that God already knows the child He has for us, so I don't want to be impatient.

This week is Ben's last week of Kindermusik. It's been fun watching him interact with other kids in more of a class-like setting and listening to all the songs he's learned. I don't know that we will continue next year, but it was a good experience for him. The theme this year was cities and the end of the year project was building a city out of whatever materials you wanted. We used a lot of cardboard and Ben loved it. It was a little crazy trying to build it in the midst of adoption paperwork and home study preparation, but it got done and he was pretty proud of it.

And here's the part where I shamelessly brag about my amazing husband. He apparently started planning for my 30th birthday party months ago. He worked out every detail, snuck into my e-mail to get addresses for friends he'd never even met, enlisted help getting everything set up, figured out how to get me there without making me the least bit suspicious, and managed to keep it a surprise the whole time. I thought we were going to an combined egg hunt for several of the small groups in our church. I even at the last minute went and got Ben a cute little basket to collect his eggs in. When we walked into the church I thought it was awfully quiet for an egg hunt with lots of little kids involved. Then we walked up the stairs and I heard someone whisper "surprise." right before everyone shouted it. Needless to say I was a bit overwhelmed and felt so blessed to have so many people come to help me celebrate. I'm still a little bit in shock that I'm turning 30 tomorrow. I always thought I would feel grown up and capable of handling life by this age, but I don't. But when I look back over the last ten years of my 20's, I can see how amazing God is as He has pursued me and loved me and convicted me and humbled me and been patient with me and comforted me and blessed me and most of all shown me that He's not finished refining me and that His refining draws me closer to Himself. (sorry for the run-on) There have been some tough things to walk through in my twenties. Sometimes that makes me nervous about my thirties. But it shouldn't, because the tough things have been the things that have made me see that God is the only important One. So I hope that when I get to the end of this next decade, I can look back and see that God was more often my first priority that He was in my twenties.
 Walking into the party
I am one very blessed woman!!

This year was such a great Easter. Ben is asking so many questions and understanding and remembering and I had so many opportunities to talk with him about the reason we celebrate. He walks around the house now saying "Jesus is alive!" I love it!
We never did get a family picture on Easter morning, and Ben is a little washed out by the flash in this one, but he was decked out this year and so grown up looking.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Conversations with Ben

Conversation while eating lunch with Ben today:

Ben: Mommy, I'm gonna be Goliath, Daddy is David, and you be a pig
Me: OK, but what does the pig do?
Ben: It goes oink and eats a lot
Me: Are you sure you want to be Goliath?
Ben: Yes, I LOVE Goliath
Me: But Goliath was a bad man who didn't follow God and David killed him
Ben: No, mommy, you be the pig, I'll be David, and daddy can be Goliath
Me: no way! I don't want daddy to get killed
Ben: Then you be Goliath and I'll be David, and then I get to kill you.
Me: Can I just be the pig and you be David?
Ben: um, sure
Me: (in my head) did I really just request to be the pig?

Monday, April 4, 2011

Captured Moments

Do you ever have times when you wish you could stay in a moment forever? I had one of those yesterday. We had a family movie night last night complete with snacks and cuddles. But that was not the moment. The moment came after the movie was over and I went out on our porch to watch the last of the sunset and feel the rare warmth of the air outside. I looked back inside and caught Matt and Ben dancing crazily to the credits of the movie. The moment continued when we all put our flip flops on and ran outside to see the beautiful sunset. And my favorite part of the night was Ben taking off running as fast as he could and Matt and I running with him and all of us laughing together because we were just enjoying each other. And in my mind at the time, I wanted it to last forever. Of course it couldn't and we had to come in and put Ben to bed, but that moment was such a reminder to me not to take life for granted and to recognize the blessings God gives.
Matt and Ben dancing to the credits

Friday, April 1, 2011

Quick Update

I cannot believe I let March go by with only one blog post. And this one is going to be short because it's still crazy! Right now we are in the middle of adoption paperwork in preparation for our home study. We attended an orientation meeting with an agency here and last week we called to register with them. Since then it's been a whirlwind of getting fingerprints, criminal record checks, copies made, and a ton of other things. But we are SO excited!! We will attend our office interview next week and our home study class the week after and then we will have our actual home visit. We are scrambling to get our extra bedroom cleaned out and ready to be a baby room. I'm going through Magic Erasers like you wouldn't believe in attempt to get all of Ben's fingerprints and crayon marks off the wall. It's amazing how many things you don't notice until you know someone is going to come to your home to look at your home. I know from past experience that this isn't a white glove check, but still, I want things clean.

Besides getting ready for our home study, Ben and I have also had a few little projects to work on. He is doing Kindermusik this spring and the theme is cities. One week they were talking about sculptures and art and they had to create a sculpture. I gave Ben a couple of pieces of aluminum foil and told him to make something. He crumpled it up and said he was done. Then he looked at it and said it looked like an elephant. I decided we would go with it and gave him more foil to make a body. Then he changed his mind and said it looked like a squirrel. We added a bushy tail and some eyes and he had a pretty cool squirrel sculpture that other than hot gluing, he did pretty much by himself. I was one proud momma!
Our next project was a car. Ben is in Awana at a local church here and each year they have a grand prix car race. I had no idea what we were going to do with this as I do not feel artistically inclined and besides painting the base color, it was kind of hard for Ben to do. It didn't help that I was sick for three weeks in late February and early March and didn't even have time to start painting it until a week before it was due to be raced. But despite that, Ben won first place for design and came in fourth (out of five total) for speed. Mostly though, he just had a great time sitting along side the track eating fun snacks and watching the cars race down the track.

The big excitement for last month was getting to go visit my sister and her family after the birth of my new nephew. He is so precious and it was fun to get to see him while he was only two weeks old. Ben was a little to excited for Stephen and kind of scared him out of wanting to play, but we still managed to get a cute little cousin picture. I cannot wait to go back up and see those sweet boys again.

We took a wonderful vacation in March as well. We stayed two nights in a lodge about two hours away and enjoyed hiking and the indoor water park. We spent the remainder of the week doing fun things around home. We took Ben rollerskating for the first time, went out to eat a few times, went to the children's museum, and watched some movies. I think having a vacation mostly at home, while not as exciting as a travel vacation, is the most relaxing type of vacation. It was much needed and we were so refreshed by the end of it.

I think that about sums up our month. Now back to the adoption craziness for me!