Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Glow in the Dark Baby?

I'm working on a story about sun safety and spent part of my day looking up sun safety/skin cancer posters on Google. During my searches, I found Ninos of Ra. You have to check out this hilarious Web site. I especially love the description under the pale baby. Hopefully, this site won't give you any viruses or anything like that. I'm not computer saavy enough to know that. I do know that this site will give you a good laugh.

On a serious side, tanning beds are bad, according to a dermatologist who we interviewed yesterday. I always knew that. I also knew a girl in high school whose family had their own personal tanning bed. I can't afford a tanning torture device so Jack will just have to be pale. But shouldn't all babies look like this?

If the organizers of the Web site wanted to give people an even bigger chuckle, they would have put a bikini on the baby in the tanning bed. Just a thought.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Sweaty wedded bliss

Mike and I attended a coworker's wedding this morning. I could tell by the address that the ceremony was going to be at someone's home so I was curious as to where we would find ourselves. The address belonged to an exclusive subdivision. The house was huge and I couldn't wait to see the inside as we walked towards the massive building. Then we found ourselves directed towards the back of the home. Ok, so we were going to be outside during the wedding. Neat, I've never attended an outdoor wedding before. Oh, so the chairs were all in the hot, hot sun during the entire thing?

Needless to say, although the wedding was beautiful, we were miserable during the entire 15 minutes plus. When I say "we", I'm not just talking about me. While makeup was dripping off my face, poor Jack was restless. I was comforted by the thought that we would be inside after the ceremony. Well, ok, so they brought the cake and the punch outside onto the non shaded deck after the formal hitching. Well, alright, so we would probably go inside this huge house after they served cake and punch. We would finally get to see the inside and escape the heat. Well, er, immediate family went inside for pictures while coworkers and mere acquaintances stood outside comforted by a couple of fans. They were even so kind as to bring outside two containers, one for trash, one for the plates, silverware and glasses, so we wouldn't have to bother stepping a toe into the spacious air conditioned house.

Hmm...so I know this house belonged to an employee of the bridal party but WTH gives in 90 degrees humid weather? My poor Jack was miserable. I'm not very good with heat. We ate our cake and punch (I've never been one to pass up that combo) and got the heck out of dodge.

I've thought about writing to Dear Abbey. If you're going to have just a cake and punch reception, don't you think you can afford an air conditioned hall?

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Post Placement Visit #2

So, life is ironic. After spending some excruciating hours cleaning yesterday, we ended up meeting with our social worker at her office tonight. I bet God was chuckling over that one, but at least our house is clean. Mike and I joked that we should have these visits more often.

We had a wonderful visit with our SW. She's fun to hang out with and talk about stuff. Our next and last visit with our SW is in September. That's kind of exciting but also sad. I'm not sure when we would have the opportunity to see our friends at the agency again. Our agency only works with couples on domestic adoption if they have one or no children in their home. If we also adopt Maggie Rose, we will no longer be eligible under their guidelines. I love our agency and would like to have them on our side again if we decide to pursue another domestic adoption. Only God knows what the future of our family looks like. However, I could go for a "real" Magic 8 ball or cheap pyschic.

Jack's picture is another great one by EE.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Judgement Time

Mike and I have been cleaning like crazy. Not that our house is a total pigsty, but there's even more pressure these days to turn this love shack into a more presentable "crib." Our social worker will visit with us tomorrow night to make sure that Jack is living in a safe house and that we're taking good care of him.

Except for his teething pains, Jack is a happy boy, so there really isn't a justification for the nerves that tend to get all knotted up before our SW arrives. We actually love our SW. She's a warm, fun person.

We took Jack to his 9 month doctor appointment last week and asked the physician to fill out an immunization/doctor visit verification from for Jack's medical history. I mentioned that there's so much adoptive people have to go through to prove that they can be parents. He said something like, if more parents were adoptive parents, there would be happier children, as opposed to those who are in unsafe environments, etc.

I struggle with this. Why it seems that biological parents seem to have the right to be parents while adoptive parents have to prove it. Yes, I understand why the system is the way it is. Babies deserve a loving home. But my brother has two biological children and he and his wife have never been visited by a social worker.

However, I would jump through a thousand hoops if that's what I had to do to keep Jack. I would even, gasp, clean my house every day.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Pool Fun

(Jack and Steve)

Mike, Jack and I had tons of fun with our friends last Friday. They took great care of Jack while our sitter was on vacation. As always, Aunt EE took wonderful pictures. I wish it had dawned on me to ask for a short lesson on their camera so I could have taken a picture of EE and Steve with Jack. We are so grateful for the love and care they show him.

I felt like I was on vacation as we splashed around at their subdivision pool. All I needed was a margarita! I didn't have one but a girl can dream.

The next lovely shot shows me after a kid did a cannonball in the pool. Like mother, like son. Later on, I looked even better as my mascara began channeling Alice Cooper.

EE also took Jack to a local health museum. Jack's head looks a little small for his body but I already knew he had a big heart. EE, thanks for the great pictures!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Photo Fun

When can 15 minutes seem like an eternity? When you bring four kids together, including two toddlers for a photo shoot. My parents recently celebrated their 40th anniversary and my bright gift idea was a picture of all their grandchildren. Although I only think it's fair to show a bad picture with the two youngsters crying, they only put the good pictures on the CD we purchased.Above caption courtesy of Jack: "Do you smell something funny or is it just me?"
(Clockwise: Christopher, Meaghan, Jack and Garrett)

The tinted pictures conceal the tears in Jack's eyes. Although he enjoys being with his cousins, he didn't want much to do with the shoot. My parents loved the picture collage.We also purchased a digital camera for them. I told mom this meant she actually had to print the gazillion pictures still frozen in time on her old digital camera. I'm not holding my breath because I don't want to pass out.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Happy Anniversary?

Today marks two years since we were logged into the CCAA, the China Center of Adoption Affairs. When we first started the process in fall 2005, the wait was less than a year. With that kind of timeline, we could have been back already with our baby girl and logged in for her sister.

The current wait for a referral is 29 months but the timeline continues to increase. The snail pace referral rate is a drag. It's hard not to become disgruntled with China's slow down. We thank God that Jack is in our lives. We hope that our friends who are in the adoption process will be blessed in incredible ways during their wait. A couple in our adoption wait group switched to special needs and are headed to China this week. I can't imagine what they must be feeling now. I'm sure I wouldn't be able to sleep.

As for us? We may end up waiting another two years. In hindsight, I can't believe two years have already passed, but looking ahead, two more years seem like a long time. I may be evolving to a slug along the way. They are slower than snails, right?

Saturday, July 5, 2008

We are Family

Our wonderful friends took care of Jack Thursday evening while Mike and I attempted to go on a date. (Date consisted of eating out and buying diapers. Whoo hoo!) Our friends were one of Jack's foster families and they love our little boy. The proof is in the picture of them below.

I always tell Jack that he has many people who love him including his birth family, many friends and his incredible foster family. They took great care of Jack during the adoption drama and were a source of emotional support and love for us.

What Should I Have Said?

What do you do when you find yourself walking behind someone incredibly slow? Do you go around them? Tonight, Mike and I went to church with Jack like we usually do on Saturday night. As we walked to church, we got behind a couple who, without going into too much detail, took up the entire sidewalk. I thought it would be rude to go around them, like it would appear too obvious that we thought they were slow so we kept to their snail pace. Our church has three doors so as soon as they were in sight and the sidewalk widened, we bolted to one of the side doors. The woman said, "I guess the right lane is for slow people." To show some kind of response, I pretended to laugh because she sounded as though she was trying to be funny.

Thinking back, maybe I should have pretended that I didn't hear her. I wasn't trying to be rude when I bolted past them but I hate getting behind slow people. I've always been a fast walker. Ugh! Another lesson learned?

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Ode to a Crappy Car

Oh crappy car.
Your brake pads are shot.
Your paint is a'peeling.
Your tires are not so hot.

Oh crappy car.
Only six years old and ready for the heap.
I'd buy a new car.
But I'm too cheap.

I wish I could put the brakes on my car's slow demise. It's had a rough life. Barely a year old, it was hit by an SUV. A few years later, when a deer committed suicide, my car was forced to be an accomplice in the ghoulish nightmare.

Now, my brakes are squeaking and I'm worried that I'm going to violate the city's noise ordinance. A few weeks back, it sounded as though the rear end intended to fall off. It's time to break down and take the poor thing to the auto body shop. Ugh! There's a point in your car's career when you have to wonder if you're spending more than its worth to keep it running. I'm already past that point but my old car payment now goes to childcare.

Maybe I should embrace the noise, sup up the car with an ear splitting stereo system and hydraulic lift system.