Heading Out......

June 29, 2009

Looking Outwm700

Just wanted to pop in quickly and let you know that we are taking an impromptu trip to Cape Cod for the 4th of July Holiday!!

We are leaving in a couple of days, but before we get out of dodge, there is a long "to do" list that needs to be tackled. I am going to take a little bloggy break this week and use these next couple of days to get everything done so I can go away with a clear head.

The kids are excited and so are we......there is nothing like the feeling of the sun on your face, the beach wind in your hair, and the sand at your toes!!

Hope you all have a Happy 4th of July......Be back soon!!!

Growing Up

June 24, 2009

Isn't it funny how you see your children everyday and you don't realize how much they are changing until you take a look at old photos??

Over the past few weeks, I have been going through all of my photos, trying to get somewhat organized..... I might be good about getting things out of my camera and up on the blog, but that is where the buck stops.

Unfortunately, all of my photos live on my computer and not on the walls in our home or in photo albums. To be perfectly honest.....I haven't done anything with my photos since I started this blog.....UGH...do I have some work ahead of me!!

So anyway, as I was organizing, it was so blatantly obvious how grown up and mature Sarah has become these last few months. I just cannot believe how much she has changed.....when I browsed through I realized that the "Baby" look is gone and now I see a little girl......

Cover Girl2wmblog
A little girl who is much more independent, secure, and confident......

In a ray of lightwmblog
A little girl whose personality is in full bloom......

A Rare Occasion4wmblog
A little girl who surprises us daily with the things she does and says.....

I look at her each day and even though she is growing up, I do not see the little girl she has become, I still see the baby that she was when she was so lovingly placed in our arms for the first time.

Don't even get me started on Nick.......we are quickly approaching the teenage years.....Oh my word.....when did that happen?? More to come on Nick....he has been away with his Dad on a little beach vacation and just returned home on Monday!! We sure missed him while he was gone!!

Happy Father's Day

June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day3700
Happy Father's Day!!
We are starting ours off with a little dessert for breakfast.....after all, it is a special occasion:)

It is STILL raining here, so we will be stuck indoors. Pat has decided to spend the day eating "manly" foods and enjoying some golf on the big screen.......

The menu consists of Homemade Sausage Sandwiches with Peppers and Onions and a side of Sweet Potato Fries......YUMMMM!!

As for dessert/breakfast......it is not too manly, but it doesn't matter....it is so SINFULLY GOOD.....

Fresh Berries with Cannoli Cream
Fruit with Cannoli Creamwm700
Here is a closer look..... I tossed fresh berries in a bowl with a little sugar and juice of one lemon. Then, I made the Cannoli Cream.....it was super easy, Whipping Cream, Ricotta Cheese, Confectioners Sugar, and a dash of Cinnamon. Also sprinkled some slivered almonds on top for a little crunch:)

If you want the exact recipe, click HERE....I can always depend on my girl Giada for an incredible recipe!!

Okay.....off to enjoy my day with one of the most wonderful father's I know......my hubby:)

Happy Father's Day to you all!!


June 16, 2009

sepia sarah3wm-700

Seventies Sarah wm700

Anticipation 2wm2-700

A couple of weeks ago, we were exploring and discovered another gem of a place for the kids to have fun and for me to photograph........a smalltown train station!!

This is actually the station that is in the town where I grew up. It is a very busy railroad crossing and on most days the trains come by every 20-30 minutes. A couple of years ago, they renovated the area and made a beautiful garden and fountain area surrounded by stone pavers and brick walkways. In addition the old wooden station was reconstructed so you can sit inside and watch as the trains pass.

I had been there once before with Nick but had never taken Sarah....so this particular afternoon, she and I headed over. She was running all over the place in normal two year old fashion. She was obsessed with the fountain and would not walk away from it until she heard the train whistle in the distance.

We walked over to the wooden station and started searching for the first glimpse of the engine. It was the most still I had seen my girl in a long time........she stood there in anticipation of what was about to come. I am not sure if it was the thunder of the heavy train speeding down the tracks or the loud whistle that blew, but it was if she was frozen and could not move.

She watched as car after car went by, she noticed some fo the "pretty colors" aka, graffiti and pointed with delight. After a couple minutes we were standing there in silence and she looked up at me and said, "Where is the next train?"

I have had these pictures on my computer for a little over two weeks....I really loved them, but was not quite sure how I was going to incorporate them into a post and then I ran acorss this quote.........

“We... anticipate what's to come, then ignore what's actually here.”
- By Stephan Rechtschaffen -

This quote really struck me.....for many reasons, but mostly because it seemed so fitting for all of us in the China Adoption community.

This wait is far from easy and the anticipation of what is going to happen next can be suffocating at times. I for one have spent countless hours searching and looking for indications/rumors of what the future will hold for us.... when are things going to speed up, how many days of referrals are coming out in the next batch, how many more months of waiting, when will we travel, etc, etc..... This summer I want to push all of the worry, what if's, and when's aside.....and concentrate on what is right here infront of me.......my family, my friends, my life as it is today!

Keeping It Real

June 11, 2009

I've realized that as my blog has evolved and my love of photography has taken over, I have gotten away from posting those spur of the moment, funny, candid type of photos that show my kids in their element.....just being kids:) So in the spirit of "Keeping it Real" I give you silly photos of a recent outing.

Wednesday was Nick's last day of school and it was also my friend Ivy's birthday. School was dismissed at 10am, so Sarah and I picked him up and then we headed South to visit Ivy and her daughter Kira. We all had lunch together and then headed to a nearby park. Nick was a good sport and really did enjoy himself while playing big brother to the two little ones. Kira just adored him and followed him wherever he went and called him by name.....it was too cute for words.

Keeping it realwm
The kids had a great time exploring, but once they spotted this water fountain, the real fun began.

Keeping it real 2wm
The girls were not strong enough to push the lever that activated the water, so Nick had to help out.

Keeping it real 3wm
Nick decided to have a little fun at the girls expense......water flying everywhere!! When they were least expecting it, he hit the lever:) Even though it looks like Sarah is ready to lick the fountain, I promise you her tongue never touched it...EWWWW

Keeping it real 4wm
When we finally ripped them away from the fountain they picked a couple flowers and ran circles around each other til they dropped....I snapped this one and was lucky enough to barely catch them both in the frame.....but thought it was so cute!!

I know I said I was keeping it real, but I had to sneak in at least one portrait style photo.....Sweet Kira looked straight at me with that pretty little smile and I couldn't resist!!

So, our summer has officially started......We are planning lots of little outings/playdates and some day trips. We are not taking any major vacations this summer, but we are planning at least one trip to Cape Cod. Can't go the entire summer without having your feet hit the sand:)

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!!

Letting Him Down Gently.......

June 9, 2009

Sunshine On A Cloudy Daywm2800
As you all know, I posted last week that we were waiting to hear about the travel soccer tryouts. Nick really had his hopes up and honestly thought he would make the team.......low and behold, Sunday night, we got the call.....and it was not good news.

Unlike last year when we got the call, he was not with me, so I kept it to myself as long as I could, but had to tell him before he went to school on Monday.

How do you tell your child something that you know is going to break their heart? There is no easy way..... I was sick to my stomach at the thought of it and was searching for the words to let him down gently.

We had many conversations with him trying to prepare him for such news. I knew even though he said he could take the rejection, that he would be crushed if he was not chosen for the team.

I decided to get him out of the house to tell him. We went for a long walk down by a peaceful little creek that he loves to wade around in. When I first told him, he handled it pretty well, but then he started to get real quiet and he stopped talking and I knew the emotions were about to come pouring out....and they did.

We made our way through the tears, but I wanted something positive to come out of this experience. You know that saying about not putting all your eggs in one basket? Well, I explained to him that while he can continue to play soccer at an intramural level, he might want to consider doing something else that he enjoys. By the time we got home, he was searching the internet for summer art classes and possibly music lessons.

In the end, I know that this is all part of life and growing up, but it doesn't change the fact that he is still my baby that I want to protect and shield from the pain of rejection.

Vintage Nickwm800
Tomorrow is his last day of school.....summer officially begins at 10am when the school doors fling open and the children come pouring out with big smiles on their faces. We are looking forward to a summer filled with fun and new beginnings. I always say, when something bad happens, somthing good always comes out of it!! We are in search of the good this summer:)

A special thanks to everyone who left me comments on the last post. Your stories and words meant so much to me. We are all human and no matter how hard we try, our eyes cannot be on them every second of every day.

It Only Takes A Split Second

June 4, 2009

Sarah In Black and white Final 3 wm

For the past two days I have been trying to decide whether or not to post this story and finally today, I decided it was worth the risk. Unfortunately, I have seen multiple people get blasted or judged for their choices or parenting skills and it saddens me that people feel the need to cast stones. The reason I want to share this is to show how quickly things can happen even when you think you are right there with your kids......so please don't judge, because I am sure I am not the only one that has had this type of thing happen to them.

In my last post I mentioned how Sarah wants to be outside every waking minute of the day.......well, I was not kidding!! Two nights ago, she got out of the house and we didn't know it until she walked to the front of the house and rang the bell. Frightened doesn't even begin to explain how we felt when we saw her waving at us through the window with a big old smile on her face.

We were all home and didn't even realize that she had escaped. I was watching a dvd upstairs in our bedroom with both of the kids, Nick and Sarah. Pat was downstairs in the office still working, which is common because of the nature of his business. So Sarah told me she was going downstairs to see Daddy for a couple of minutes and then would come back up. This is also normal and usually means she is going down to get Daddy to give her a snack and she usually comes back up with a bowl of crackers or pretzels.

About Fifteen minutes goes by and we all hear our doorbell ringing which is odd, because it is not about 8:45pm and dark outside. I jump out of the bed and run downstairs and meet Pat at the front door and as we open we our horrified at what we see. The two of us were literally trembling and ready to accuse one another of not watching her. We both grabbed and picked her up and very sternly told her she was never ever to walk out any door in our house without Mommy or Daddy. I think we got our point across or she just picked up on our fear, because her little happy, I am proud of myself smile quickly turned into tears.

After we all calmed down, we all went back upstairs watched the end of the movie. I barely slept the entire night because my mind was racing......the thought of what COULD HAVE HAPPENED in that amount of time. Neither of us would ever forgive ourselves. It really only takes a split second. Thankfully we live in a very safe community, but now a days that doesn't matter.

I can tell you, we are changing things around here and we all learned a valuable lesson. Even when you think your kids are safe inside your home, they are not.....especially when you are dealing with an independent 2.5 year old who wants to do everything herself. She is old enough and tall enough to open locks on all doors. Even with Baby proof locks for regular doors, she can figure out how to get out through our sliders in both the kitchen and the entertainment room that lead out to our deck. We really have no other choice but to set the alarm when we are inside so if she gets out, we will know immediately!!

I have spent the last few days beating myself up over this one.....I know I am a good parent, but this really freaked me out.......I am sure there are many of you out there that can identify or have been in similar situations whether it be at your home, in a dept store, or any public place. It can all change so fast.....you better believe she has not been out of my sight for even a second since this has happened.