Monday, July 30, 2012

Medal Standings

The Olympics have the kids pretty jazzed, and because of the brutal combination of hubris and lack of life experience to suggest otherwise, Grant and Grace think they can do every sport better and faster than the competing Olympians.

But, just this morning, I heard Grant commentating a new event.  There was a play-by-play, ending with him declaring Grace the gold medalist (in a stunning show of generosity on his part--he took the silver) in light saber dueling.

Watch out, 2024!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Just because...


He might not be the world's best sleeper (hopefully, when the kids start school, Trent will be able to settle into a routine), but he sure is super cute!  He babbles constantly, is FINALLY okay with being put down for a bit (that was a long three months), and loves tummy time (prefers it, really).  He has rolled over some, but not with any consistency, and his tummy issues persist (despite five different formulas).  He's generally very happy, and we're counting down the days until our adoption is finalized (August 23).  He has a LOT of personality (so, he should fit right in), and he has his favorite people (momma tops the list, thankfully).  Grant and Grace still adore him, and they are great helpers, for which I am grateful!  

He's pretty darn cute and pretty darn sweet, and we're thankful... pretty darn thankful.  

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Marrying Type

It's no secret that Grant has always had a bit of fondness for the ladies.  He used to flirt with waitresses (usually blonde) before he was two (often successfully... as the waitress would ask if she "could take him home.").  He carried around his princesses during the twos, and he had a strange fascination thing for Wonder Woman during the threes.  But, nothing has compared to Grant's first real love, a girl he met in BSF named Mikayla.

If you don't remember your first love, I get how you might be skeptical.  But, this is no joke.  Grant loves her with as much as a five-year-old boy can understand love.  He thinks about her, talks about her (boy, does he talk about her), dreams about her, and even plans the demise of any other potential suitors.  And, Mikayla loves Grant.  This love has prompted Grant to ask--over the last year--all about marriage.  How do people get married?  Why do they get married?  And, so we've explained as much as we can: from the asking of a blessing from fathers to finding someone who loves Jesus.

Recently, we were invited to spend the day with Mikayla and family at a nearby lake, and, as you can imagine, Grant was ecstatic.  He talked about it for days.  On the morning of, he asked who would be attending, and I listed the usual cast of characters including Mikayla, her brothers, her mother, and her father.   Grant has never met Mikayla's dad, and when I mentioned that he would be there, Grant broke out sobbing.

After calming him down, I asked Grant what was wrong.  He told me he was crying because he was scared... he thought he had to ask Mikayla's dad if he could marry Mikayla that very day, and the thought of making his intentions known and asking for her hand in marriage had rocked Grant to his core.

In the end, I explained to Grant that he could get married sometime after med school (just kidding--I couldn't care less what Grant decides to do), and he talked me down to 19.  I think he's relieved that it's 19 and not 5!  And, in the end, I think Mikayla's dad is more than okay with knowing his little girl isn't spoken for just yet!

Ultimately, I'm also endeared to know that Grant loves such quality girls.  Mikayla is sweet, kind, smart, nurturing, funny and loves Jesus.  She's all a future mother-in-law could hope for... 

Monday, July 09, 2012

The Norm

This morning, I tied a two week old helium balloon to Trent's wrist, and he was so enamored that he babbled endlessly.  Of course, soon as the camera came out, he stopped... but also, we were invaded by the two olders... which goes to show how and why Trent will NEVER have his own video footage or have a moment to himself.  Also, I kept filming the sibling argument... or how and why Mommy Trent will need therapy.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Grace turns 4!

A few weeks ago, Grace turned 4.  It was kind of crazy because her birthday and her "big," luau birthday party were separated by weeks, so it was kind of stalled, but we still celebrated in style.  On her actual bday, she picked a restaurant of choice (the blasted Mayberry Cafe, where they make a big birthday deal of you and kids get a toy... oh, well that the food is beyond mediocre).   Then, it was presents, more cake (and, yes, that is Chewbacca on her chocolate cake... the girl has a SUPER STRANGE fascination with the wookie) and lots of pictures.

Then, almost two weeks later (ah, the scheduling conflicts!), we had another bday bash for the girl!  Nothing like celebrating your bday for weeks.  She loved the presents, the family, and her strawberry cake (thanks, Aunt Barb, for that one!).

The next day, she had to try out her new helmet!

It's hard to believe that the little baby they handed me almost three years ago is the same super confident, super quirky, super sweet little girl today.  We're so thankful for our Wei Wei.  She makes the whole world--much less our little corner of it--so much brighter!

Friday, July 06, 2012

Trent Love

The road to Trent was not an easy one.  I still think about Nadia every single day, and despite what people might think, having Trent doesn't make the Nadia pain go away.  I realize that had we not lost Nadia, Trent would not be here... but, in the end, I want them both.  So, while having Trent does not make the loss of Nadia go away, it does bring it full circle and has shown us the amazing love and provision God has for us.

In Indiana, there is something called the putative father registry, and birth fathers can register with the Department of Health to say that "that's my baby, and I want him back."  Now, Trent's named birth father signed before he was born, and his birthmom signed upon exiting the hospital.  This situation, in the domestic adoption world, is as good as it gets.  However, I was plagued with unbelievable fear that the birth father who signed might not be the birth father.  What if there was someone else?  What if the birthmom had a secret fling and never disclosed it?  What if someone wanted to take love-of-my-life-Trent-David away from us?   Birth fathers have thirty days to claim these rights, and even though it looked picture perfect, because of the Nadia situation and all the deceit we encountered there, I struggled to believe that we'd get to keep Trent.  I struggled to call him "my son," and I often told Grant and Grace to "go help the baby" not "go see what's wrong with your brother."

The thirty days were an eternity.  And then, it took even longer because of "day 30" being on a weekend and the Memorial Day holiday.  I pestered our lawyer.  I prayed like mad.  I cried.  But, early on in the process, I had found this verse, and I felt like David penned it for me eons ago.  It's like it was written just for me, and when the waves of anxiety and fear came, I would cling to this verse from Psalms 10:

But you, God, see the trouble of the afflicted;
you consider their grief and take it in hand.
The victims commit themselves to you;
you are the helper of the fatherless.

Could anything have spoken more to my situation?  I felt afflicted.  I had grief.  I felt like a victim, at times.  Our situation concerned the fatherless.  Three things stuck out above all else, though: 1. It is God, first, who has taken up the cause of the fatherless; I'm just coming in to help.  2. Committing myself to Him was the answer for my anxiety.  3. (and this was the biggest): The image of God taking my grief in hand was the most powerful image of dealing with my grief that I had yet to encounter.  It conjured images of totality, of an attempted ease, of unburdening.

Still, I couldn't be more excited for the day to come to hear that no one had claimed Trent.  And when did our attorney hear the news back from the Health Department... on Nadia's first birthday!  I knew, at that moment, that all the waiting, all the pain, had been so God could say, "See, I've got this--too--under complete control."

I am so thankful for Trent.  So very, very, very thankful.  He is not an easy baby, but he's an absolute dream, and we couldn't be more thankful.  No, really, this isn't a baby we take for granted--we couldn't be more thankful.

So, as for Trent's adoption, we finalize in court at the end of August; we're so happy to be a family of 5... so grateful.