Monday, May 31, 2010

2010 Craft Project: HALF WAY!!

Project #15:

 (AKA Shawl/Rug, according to Mark)


I have had this yarn since before Mark and I got married.  My mother in law (bless you, Vicki) gave it to me.  I knew there was a bunch but I never sure what to make with it.  I knew I could do little projects like hats and stuff (and I did several of those with it) but I never knew how to use the bulk of it.

Until I found this shrug pattern.  It was super easy and fairly quick.  From cast on to burying ends was about a week.  The yarn is super soft and cozy and I loved wearing it!  I very rarely make things other than hats, scarves, booties and blankets, so this was a huge leap outside of my comfort zone and I'm glad I made it!  I'm considering looking for a pin or broach to serve as a button, but I'm still undecided on that. 

I'm so excited to have this to wear this fall.  It's always necessary to layer in the fall and spring here,so this will be a great addition to my wardrobe.  Thanks, Vicki, for providing the yarn all those years ago!  I hope you like what I did with it.


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

A Day Off

I took today off of my regular scheduled mothering.   It was delightful.

In case you're wondering where I went and how I managed to take a day of (gasp!) in the middle of the week-don't worry.  I'll tell you.

We went to my grandparent's house!  Tate and Theo love it there (and why wouldn't they?  They get spoiled rotten) and it gave me a chance to take a break for a few hours and relax I mean get stuff done without little boys.

I went to three stores in the time it usually takes me to go to one.  I didn't have to buckle-unbuckle-run for a cart in the rain-constantly remind about not touching-run out to the bus in the rain-put in seat-buckle again. 


I got some summer clothes that the boys desperately needed, and I spent the rest of my birthday money, too!

Thank you, dear grands.  You made the boys (and my) day!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Just to be Clear

I DID NOT dress Tate today.

Ahh, the beauty of three year olds making choices.  I justify this by telling myself that he's going to be really good at making choices and won't be paralyzed by indecision.  Or worry about what other people think of him (clearly).

Also, FYI, we're not running short (haha) on clean laundry.   This is just what he wanted to wear.  Mismatched socks and all.

...we're hoping this is just a phase...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Tired of Fighting

I've been battling these last 5-7 pounds for a long time.

Just today I have decided that I'm done.  I'm finished.  I'm tired of feeling like I need to do something about it and not doing anything. 

I have decided that as of today, I've won.  I'm not going to fight it the same way.  I've been playing tug-of-war for months.  That game is over.  I'm going to win.

I am going to have my allotted amount of water everyday.

I am going to eat my full servings of veggies and fruit everyday.

I am only going to eat when I am hungry.

I am not going to eat dessert during the week.

I'm training for a marathon, for goodness' sake.  I can get this last little bit off.  I just need to stop being ridiculous about what I'm eating.  That's the key (for me, at least).  If I just start eating a little better, I'm confident that I will beat the last 7 pounds. 

I'm winning.  Not fighting, winning!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Oh Goats!

(Alternately titled: "Did I Already Post This?")

A few weeks ago we were blessed with an opportunity to go and see some goats.

One of the goats bottle feeds.

Tate was in kiddie heaven.

Tate and Lucy

Tate, Lucy and Miss Laura (Mr. Alex's wife)

And lest you think that Tate is always looking cute and sweet, here's how Tate looked in the rest of the 118 pictures...

Thursday, May 20, 2010


If you're wondering how the adoption process is going, well, this post is for you!

We are done with our part of the homestudy.  The homestudy is when the state (or agency on behalf of the state) certifies us to adopt.  In this case, our homestudy consisted of MANY documents (birth certificate, marriage license, tax records, the questions, etc), fingerprints and a background check, three meetings (in our case two were in our house, one outside of the house), physicals for each of us, and for Mark and myself TB tests, urinalysis, and an HIV test.  Tons of fun, let me tell you.

Our caseworker, Carrie, is writing all this into a Homestudy document.  Once this is done we send the Homestudy along with certificates and licenses into Immigration.  They go through our stuff and then send us an appointment to get fingerprinted with the FBI in Salem.  This is all to get federally approved to adopt internationally.

After receiving that OK we then submit all of our stuff to Nicaragua for processing.  We have no idea now long that will take.  What is on our side, though, is that everything and everyone is on board with the adoption, we don't have to terminate rights or anything.  At the same time we're waiting on Nicaragua, we have to have the Orphanage submit paperwork to the US Embassy in Managua saying that the girls are actually orphaned (there's a list of criteria that have to be met.  The girls meet this criteria but it just has to be documented).  Once Nicaragua and the US are done then the adoption can be finalized and the girls come home with us.

So, in the big picture, where are we?  I have no idea.  I have no clue how long Nicaragua is going to take to process our paperwork.  I'm praying believing that the girls could be home by Christmas.  It would take a miracle, but I know it's possible.  Would you join me in praying that for us?

We are almost done with the big paperwork mess.  I am guessing that we'll file with Immigration next week, and then we wait! 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Craft Project 2010

Project #14:

Photography Props!

A Pixie Hat:

And a Cocoon:

Both pieces were knit in the round.  I am only counting them as one project because I had to buy yarn for the hat, but luckily I already had cocoon yarn in my stash!!  Yeah for recycling!

I've been promised "real" pictures once the props have been utilized by a newborn, so stay tuned for those.

A huge thanks to Photography by Tirzah for her order!   If you're in the Salem area and are looking for a photographer, check her out!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Theo and Tate Quote

Theo:  mamamamama dadadadada bububeubub

Tate: MOM!!!!  Baby Theo is talking in baby Spanish!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Heaven: Like a Big Graduation Party

Yesterday we went to a graduation party.   I love graduation parties.  They are so laid back, cheerful, many good things.  What I love the most, though, is that the work is done.  Behind you.  Finished.  You can relax and bask in a job well done, reminisce about memories made, and appreciate the people that helped you get there. 

I think Heaven will be a lot like that.  We'll be relaxing with friends, thankful that the work is done.  We'll have made it.  We won't have to worry about what bad news might be coming...that life will be done and over with.  We'll be able to thank those people that made our lives worth living, that encouraged and helped us, and most of all we'll be singing praises of the God who loves us and made us in his image! 

So, let me lift my imaginary glass and give a quick toast.  To Heaven's big graduation party.  I can't wait to see you all there!

I'm sure most people would say that Heaven is going to be more like a wedding reception, but for me, a graduation party is a better fit...who wants to think about wearing uncomfortable wedding shoes in heaven?

Saturday, May 15, 2010

18 miles of hills

My wonderful marathon partner and I ran 18 miles today.

Uphill most of the way.

We didn't realize the trail was kind of hilly completely without flat parts except for when you cross the road.

I'm not even joking.

We did pretty well, though.  We were more than pleased with how well things went considering.  And got some good hill training in. 

The saddest part of the day was when I lost my sunglasses.  They were a gift from my mom and I've had them for more than three years-a lifetime for sunglasses in the Stearns' house.  Anyway, I tripped over a root or rock, started to fall forward until my unsuspecting but very stable partner blocked my fall.  (God bless you, Miriam.)  I was pretty shaken up and didn't realize that my glasses (that had been happily perched on my collar) were missing. 

Me and my sunglasses when we were still together.  Although we were bummed about a Mariner's loss.  We weathered a lot of storms together.  We were very close. 

RIP, Sweet [free] Maui Jims.  I'll miss you. 


Just to cheer you up while you mourn the loss of my glasses:


Tate: Mom, where was my daddy tonight?

Me:  Daddy was at a meeting with your friend Joshua's daddy.  Do you remember Joshua?  Do you remember what he looks like [Tate's only met Joshua a few times].

Tate:  [exasperated] Mom, yes.  He is not a dinosaur. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My Favorite Things

I think I'm going to share about some of my favorite things.

I'm going to call it the ever original "A Few of My Favorite Things."

Like that?  I came up with it all by myself.

Ahem.  Or not. 
But it is catchy, and you'll probably be humming that to yourself all day long...

"Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens..."

Actually, one of my new favorite things is the Glee Soundtrack.


"Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens..."

Because I love ensembles.  I love choral music.  And some pop.  And R&B.  And show tunes.  They do a little of everything. 

"Brown paper packages tied up with strings..."
Let me just go ahead and say that I don't watch every episode, but I do watch most of them.  My first impression was annoyance. 

"When the dog bites..."

The character Rachel just BUGS me.  

"When the bee stings..."

But the music rocks, and I love the diverse and talented cast.  They sing their hearts out.  I've downloaded several of the songs and they make up a large portion of my workout play list.  So if you're looking to spice up your music wardrobe, consider a song from Glee!

"I simply remember my favorite things
And then I don't feel so bad"

So there you have it.  My first edition of  "AFOMFT".

You can thank me for the song getting stuck in your head later.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A Year Ago

A year ago
This very week
We knew in our hearts that we were going from this family...

To this one. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

...not so much...

I love planning and thinking about running a marathon.

Actually training to run the marathon?  Not so much.

I love having children.  Love love love it.
Getting up in the middle of the night for said children?  Not so much.

I love having friends all over the world. 
Not getting to see those friends nearly often enough?  Not so much.

I love having a full refrigerator.
Actually going grocery shopping?  Not so much.

I love knitting and crocheting.  Or any creating, really.
But burying the ends?  The finish work?  Not so much.

I love having an empty laundry hamper.
Doing laundry?  I hate it.

This week I am being blessed with the opportunity to do things I'd rather not do in order to accomplish or enjoy things I do love.   I'm trying to stay positive.  I'm just tired.  I'm so ready for the weekend and it's not even Wednesday yet.

Then again, I skip watching Prison Break at night and get to bed a little earlier, that might help my attitude a bit...

Peace and love,

Monday, May 10, 2010

Back from the Weekend

This is an incredible article about Love and Adoption.  If you're close to us and will be around when our girls come home, please read it.  Or if you're not close to us but are interested in adoption, you should read it.

The author breaks down 1 Corinthians 13 while explaining adoption.  It's well written, thought provoking and beautiful.


Me:  Tate, what's you're name?

Tate: Tate!

Me: You're right!  Do you remember your whole name?

Tate:  My name is 'Tate The Best!'

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Tate Quotes

Because I'm way behind on them...

Tate: Mom, does God go pee pee on the potty?
Me: Umm...I don't know...

(desperately trying to think of some way to not inadvertantly give him permission to pee anywhere)

Me:   Jesus did.  And we should try to live like Jesus.


Mark: Tate, isn't your mother wonderful?

Tate:  Nope, but she's beautiful.


Tate: Dad, when I'm 26 I'm going to get a motorcycle with you.
Mark:  OK!  That sounds great!
Tate:  We're going to get three motorcycles!!
Mark:  Really?  For you, me and Theo?
Tate:  Daaaad, NO!! For you, me and Mr. Alex!

(Mr. Alex is a friend of ours with whom Tate is clearly smitten).

Thursday, May 6, 2010


Dear Lord,

Please sell our house soon.  I know this is all in your timing.  I accept that.  I just wish that your timing was now. 

Help me to trust you more and forgive me for doubting.  I love you.


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Last Week (ack!) Roundup

Or, an alternative title could be,

"The reason Jenni hasn't blogged the last week is because Theo learned to climb"


"Hey Mom!  Look What I Can Do!"

or lastly,

"Why Theo Wears a Helmet All Day"

Yes friends, it's true.  Theo can climb.  Imagine my suprise and joy when I walked into the dining room to find Theo like this:

ummm...yeah.  I almost peed my pants I was so freaked out. 

 (For the record he was sitting in the chair but somehow managed to get out).

He's super duper proud of himself.  And his reward for this accomplishment?


Yes, he does get to wear a helmet!  All day if he wants! 

And he's solidly strapped into whatever apparatus he's using at the moment.

(For the record, it was his idea.  Tate wears his all the time so he can go in the back and ride his bike and scooter.  Theo wanted to wear his too and I thought it was a great idea, especially considering his new skill set.)

So, life has entered a new realm.  Theo's a climber.  It's all new to me because Tate never has been.  I should have seen it coming when Theo went all the way up the stairs before he was 8 months old. 

So there you have it folks.