Category Archives: adoption

{bits from} the week.

a few more things i am grateful for…

{a relaxing week off}

{projects completed. thank you again prudent baby!}

{a garden that won’t stop giving. this time it’s bananas…i never, ever thought the tree would really give!}

{baking thanksgiving pies for family. i am grateful that we have food to share with others.}

{a good home. period. but it’s nice to be all decked out for the holidays, too.}

{the means to give presents. and, yes, they are all wrapped and ready to go.}

{my family. i am truly blessed. this is j trimming his own little tree in his room.}

{signing the all-important adoption paperwork. one step closer to being official, people!}

and you…the blogging community. you are generally a quiet bunch, but i know that you’re out there. my sitemeter tells me you are reading from ALL OVER THE WORLD. i am amazed and grateful for you. if you could just say hi sometime this month i would love it!

i hope this holiday season is a joyous, blessed one for you! i’ve been learning a lot recently that has been adding to my appreciation of the season. i’ll share more later…


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Filed under adoption, around the homestead, blog, celebrations, family, foster care, gratitude, in the garden

{things that} delight me.

there are just too many things in blogland that delight me right now, but here are a few…

{baby animals via unruly things}

{dessert night/recipe swap party idea via tangled and true}

{chore chart by modeco kids via apartment therapy}

{grab bags for those less fortunate-a great teaching tool for our kids-via wide open spaces}

{coulson macleod prints via design sponge}

{and this sneak peek via design sponge}

and, yay!, a new baby for the daddy diaries

good stuff, no?

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Filed under adoption, blog, foster care, images, inspiration, room and home crush

grateful for…good news from ashley.

ashley is a foster mom like me, and i have followed her journey for awhile. she and her husband had a scare this week and thought for sure that their son would be taken away very soon. i thought about them all day yesterday and my heart was broken, but i prayed and prayed, as did they and others who know them and who know of them.

and guess what? God answered prayers.

simply amazing. now i’m crying from joy!

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{via the photographic dictionary}

of course we knew that adopting from the foster care system would be hard. it would be long. it would be heart-breaking at times. boy does it test your patience. i think adoption of any kind does that, but fost-adopt is unique in its own way. at different times we’ve just thrown up our hands saying, “are you kidding me? what else could happen?” and then it does. every time we’ve expected something to happen it hasn’t, so not a whole lot surprises us now.

the reason i don’t update about our adoption of j is basically because nothing new has happened. and the sad part? our state is one of the “quickest” to want to place children in permanent loving homes. so that means that thousands of children around the country just linger for a very long time in foster care. so despite it being heart-wrenching, if you are in any position to give a child a permanent home, or even a temporary one, then please consider it.

in the meantime, i apologize for the heavy posting on food. it is fall, however, and food and cooking is a form of entertainment around here. that and decorating, and maybe a little fashion, but decorating and fashion cost more money than food, so there you have it. oh wait there’s gardening. maybe i’ll post about my garden. i don’t know, but i am uninspired and a little jealous of some of your blogs. anyway, if you’re here about adoption, do check back later. if you’re here to listen to a crazy woman ramble, then thank you for listening.

we were supposed to sign adoption paperwork last week, but some paperwork from sacramento was delayed so now we wait a couple more weeks. of course. people ask me all the time, “how do you do it?” let me tell you what gets me through it: FAITH. plain and simple. i know that some of you might not believe in a higher being, but i do. big time. i believe that j was meant for us. i believe that God brought him to us. and i have faith that God will bring us another child (and maybe another one). i have no idea how many children we are meant to parent, but i know God does.

and if you really want to see how faith plays a role in adoption, see love’s story about adoption here. you’ll want to follow their journey for sure. and see here for katie’s work in uganda. truly amazing what faith can do.

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you know you’re a mother when you feel some sort of guilt, right? i’ve been grappling with this lately, as work comes piling in and i struggle to keep our house together and our family fed literally and metaphorically. since school has started i’ve tried my best to put good, wholesome meals on the table as i did all summer, and feeling guilty when i fell short. food is important to me anyway, but since getting j, it’s become more so, as he came to us undernourished over a year ago.

i can attest to the amazing attributes that good food has for a growing child, especially one that has come from a less-than-desirable background. i’ve had to surrender, however. the pressure is too great. i know the importance of local, sustainable, organic, etc., etc. but something’s gotta give right now. i’m seeking help from pre-made meals, and that’s that. trader joe’s and costco, i love you. we’re still eating healthily, just not everything from scratch as we did in the summer.

food isn’t the only thing i’ve had to lighten up on. i am a perfectionist, and it’s more often than not a fault, rather than a good thing. i made my own birthday cake.

yes, you heard it. i love to bake, no one else around here does, and i hate store-bought cakes, so there you have it. it wasn’t a problem for me, so i don’t see the problem other people had with it when i told them this. anyway, j wanted to help me frost the cake, and if you know the typical work of a 2-year-old in baking, you can imagine it wasn’t the prettiest thing you’ve seen. i let it happen though, despite my wincing faces behind his back, because i know it’s important to have j help. he had fun doing it, and it was precious to see his pride in making his mom a cake. in my head i planned to just whip up another one, perfect in every way, but something happened. i looked at the finished product and decided that it was simply the most beautiful cake i had ever seen. and there you have it. a perfectionist not quite reformed, but getting there, realizing that i am human, and that i could be proud, too, because i saw a beautiful mess.



Filed under adoption, eat, foster care, parenting

my boy.



this is my boy at 2. i can’t show you a picture yet, because he’s not “officially” all mine to share, and i regret to say that you’re missing out on some seriousness cuteness.

he talks A LOT. not around strangers very much, but you can’t stop him from story telling at home. i’m pretty much the chief translator as to what’s being said, however.

he is about to start wearing “big boy underwear”, which is a big and happy deal, but kind of sad, too, for it really signifies he’s no longer a baby.

he has a vivid imagination and has already started pretend play, especially cooking (where in the world does he get that?). he makes coffee (usually offered with an orange…not a bad combo if you ask me), and cupcakes, and eggs, and even uses an imaginary salt cellar.

he has good manners and says “please”, “thank you”, and “excuse me”, even to the dogs.

he’s a backseat driver, often telling me, “go fast mom.”

oh yeah, sometimes he calls me “mom” instead of “mommy”, which is, like the underwear, both a happy and sad thing. no idea where he got that from.

he already has self-confidence. when i clean his face he says “i’m handsome”, and when he does something that we praise he says “i’m smart”. now to make sure that this doesn’t turn into full-blown conceit.

he loves to play the “kisses game”, in which we kiss him all over the face and neck.

he loves his home. he always says “goodbye home” when we leave and names off all the animals to say goodbye to them, too. when we pass church, he makes sure to say “hi church”

he is not afraid of new experiences and loves everything about going to a new place.

he is empathetic and is quick to comfort someone in distress. he also asks me several times a day, “you okay mommy?”, just to make sure that all is right with me.

he is my first child, and because of him i am more than okay.

i love you my boy.


Filed under adoption, family, foster care, gratitude, parenting

an epic summer.


it’s good to reflect when something good comes to an end, and this summer has definitely been an epic one. that’s my new favorite word. epic. among other things it means majestic or impressively great, and that’s the only way i can describe our first summer with j. it was a dream come true, topped off with a great trip to hawaii.

every morning j woke up, looked out the window, and said, “mommy, daddy. the beach is close!” it was like he couldn’t believe it, and every morning had to check if it was really true. despite all the things we did he remembers the beach, his friends natalie and isabel, and his cousins elijah, carson, and frankie being there with him.

while in hawaii, there was a column written by andreas arvman in the honolulu advertiser where the writer discussed a trip he and his wife planned to sweden with two young daughters. despite the many activities they planned, their eldest (2 1/2 years old) remembered running around in her grandmother’s backyard the most. the article made me think back on my fondest traveling memories, and yes, like the author discussed, it was the people that i shared them with that i remembered the most. and i’m sure it will be same for j.








it was a summer of long leisurely mornings, al fresco meals and a (re)discovery of good, slow food, hours of looking at the pacific, playing in the sand, journeys to see new and familiar family, little adventures, sharing joy and laughter with good friends, and, most memorable, becoming one step closer to being a forever family. summer, we will never forget you!

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Filed under adoption, family, foster care, gratitude, milestones, outings, travel