Thanks for stopping by! We were a family of three, until we added one more (cat, that is), making us a family of four. In 2012, we added four more...one husband, two girls, and a dog. We have a full plate as a party of eight!

Adoption, blended families, pets, school, running...it's all here. Pull up a chair and read a while. After you do, please leave a little comment love! It makes me happy...and y'all know...if Momma is happy, then everyone is happy...at least at our house!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Cat Claws and Sunday Bulletins

Cat Claws
For Christmas, Hannah Cat got a Pedi*Paws. It's basically a big motorized nail file that serves as an alternative to clippers for use on a cat's claws. To say she disliked it is putting it mildly. We tried it again this afternoon. It was that or take her to the vet for a $15 "pedicure." I would prefer to put that $15 to some other use besides getting a pedicure for our cat! It took both Gloria and me to get the deed done. After three failed attempts in the living room, we lured her to the dining room table with some treats that she loves. (Maybe now she will associate the table with bad things happening and stay off of it???) I covered her with a blanket, practically laid on top of her while holding her by the scruff of the neck with one hand, and got one paw with the other hand. Gloria held the device and we went to work. She was growling at first but then just gave in. Not that she was happy or relaxed. She certainly was not! And she bolted at the first moment's opportunity. Currently she is under Glo's bed...probably plotting her revenge! But the front claws are not little fish hooks anymore. :)

Church Bulletins
I cleaned out three weeks worth of church bulletins from my purse today. Gloria usually draws or writes in them during the sermon each week. Here is what a found...
  • Two weeks ago: She had taken the time to draw lines like you see on primary-aged handwriting paper. Then she wrote: "My mom and I like to woch (watch) my cat Hannah Cat woch the birds." There is a picture of HC looking at birds through the back window.
  • Last week: Under the announcement for the pancake supper this Tuesday she wrote "No thank you. I can't eat your pancakes. They are not gluten free." Then in another spot she wrote "I'd like to come in ples (please) I am homless (homeless)." I don't know if she noticed the homeless gentleman sleeping on the ground in a corner on the side of the church as we were walking across the street from the parking garage or not. I really don't know where that came from.
  • Today: After writing a sentence and circling all of her sight words, she drew pictures of angels.
I know she is listening while drawing and writing because she will ask me a question or make a comment about the sermons. The day she told me the sermon was "too short" I laughed out loud. How many children want longer sermons in church? Evidently she wasn't finished writing the story she was working on. Actually, I'm not sure I've ever heard an adult complain that a sermon was too short!

Friday, February 20, 2009

Movie Night?

We always try to do something "family" on Friday night: movie night, game night, dinner out, swim at the Y...just something different from every other night. Last night Gloria said she wanted to have movie night with Mary Poppins and popcorn.

Now, I don't let her watch much television during the week. I tell her that too much tv will rot her brain. She just laughs at me. Lately she hasn't even asked to watch tv because we have been busy. On the way home this afternoon, she slapped her hand to her forehead with "Oh no!" Further inquiry led to this: "I forgot that Friday is movie day at after school care and I wanted to have movie night tonight at home. Oh no! I've already had my brain rot for the day! Now what will we do? I really, really, really, really wanted to watch Mary Poppins tonight!"

Needless to say, we're sitting here watching Mary Poppins (in the fox hunt scene from inside Bert's street painting). Popcorn will be served shortly.

Gotta' go...it's time to sing along with "Supercalifragilisticexpealidocious!"

Thursday, February 19, 2009

This post is part of "Hi/Lo Thursday" on the Riggs Family Blog. Check out their blog to read everyone else's "Hi/Lo" posts and for a chance to win $100.

As I've mentioned before, Gloria and I discuss the happy/sad or best/worst or good/bad about each day while we are eating dinner. Her comments tonight for the week were:

Good: the things she ordered with a birthday gift certificate arrived today. There's nothing like a big brown box waiting for you at the door when you get home in the afternoon, especially if it is a way of extending your birthday celebration.

Bad: Falling on the steps at after-school care and getting bruises on her legs.

Of course, then she turns it around on me. You know, there are so many little things that I notice each day. But generally, things are good. This week, though, I've been struggling to recognize the good points. That said, my high point for the week was realizing that we made it to the Y four times this week. We swam together on Sunday and then I was able to work out three other times. I am committed to getting myself back into shape.

The low point for the week is something that so many of us are facing. It's the whole economic outlook right now. We are required to start our weekly staff meetings with budget updates from the county office. This week, it was grim. We are potentially facing losing teaching staff, pay cuts, furloughs...nothing that many other places are not facing too, but it's really hard to see how the current state of affairs is going to impact teaching and learning.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Gloria's Birthday

While her birthday was actually 10 days ago, here is a picture that shows the new sparkles in her ears. She is still missing those two front teeth that she pulled out in December! No signs that the replacements are going to arrive any time soon! She still spends lots of time admiring her pierced ears in any mirror she can find.






Here's a picture of her birthday cake. She requested a butterfly cake this year, so of course I obliged. I always make her cake at home. I've done Elmo, a princess castle, a pony, hearts, and now the butterfly. I think this one is my favorite so far. Gloria was thrilled with it, which makes this momma feel good. :)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Laughter in Pix

Laughter LivesThis post is part of "Laughter Lives! Tuesday" on the Riggs Family Blog. Check our their blog to read everyone else's "Laughter Lives!" posts.

Gloria just turned 6 last week. We enjoyed some time looking at old photo albums and talking about some of the things we have done together. Here are a few pictures that make me laugh when I look at them or remember what was going on...



This picture was taken about 6 weeks after I brought Gloria home from Guatemala. We were at my parents' house. Her cousin was very interested in what Gloria was playing with and picked it up to inspect it more closely. Clearly Gloria was not happy with the situation. She balled up that fist and pulled back her arm like she was going to slug her cousin a good one! I believe some shrieking was also involved. The translation was "Give my back my toys right now or else!"

In this picture, Gloria is two years old. She had noticed the light in the microwave, commented "Hot" and grabbed the nearest pair of sunglasses she could find. She's so proud of herself. I laugh at those big, dark glasses and the silly grin.

I put this one in a post a week or so ago. But, it happens almost daily and always makes me laugh. Gloria is trying to rescue Hannah Cat's toy mouse from underneath the stove. It seems like Hannah Cat is saying "Just a little more to the left. That's it...almost...I know you can do it!"

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Gloria Got Her First Diamonds Today!

Well, simulated diamonds was what they called them at the doctor's office. But, they are shiny and sparkly and princess-like. You see, Gloria got her ears pierced today for her sixth birthday.

She has been counting down the days until today for a month with excitement mixed with a little nervousness. We had an appointment at the pediatrician's office for late this afternoon. Due to a scheduling conflict on their part, we had to change it to this morning. It was be late for school or deal with Gloria's devastation over having to do it on a day that was not her birthday. It was easier to be late for school. On our way over there, I knew she was getting more and more nervous because it was extremely quiet in the backseat of the car. When we got there, she looked awfully pale...almost green...and just curled up in my lap. I felt so bad for her, but she insisted that this was what she wanted. I tried to distract her with silly talk, but she was having none of that.

The doctor came in dancing and excited and singing "We're gonna' pierce your ears. We're gonna pierce your ears." That made Gloria laugh and she did so well after that. She wanted to sit in my lap and hold my hands. I knew she was strong, but geesh! She really squeezed hard! After the first earring was in, Gloria started laughing. "I got my ear pierced!" Of course we still had to do the other one. But, there wasn't a single tear or a wince or anything. When we were done, she bounced out of the doctor's office stopping only to admire herself in the mirror. Where she had been almost green just a little while earlier, she was absolutely glowing. "I feel like a princess! I have diamonds in my ears! I feel so beautiful!"

My little girl is growing up. Six years old. Pierced ears. But still my little Glo-bug!

Monday, February 2, 2009

February 2nd

Today most of us recognize as Groundhog's Day. But for me it is the day, five years ago, when I finally got that call that all Guatemalan adoptive parents long to receive..."you're out!" which means that the final adoption decree has been issued. I was reading aloud to my class when my cell phone rang. Now, I usually have my phone on silence and tucked away in my purse which is locked in the file cabinet. But, for some reason, I had my phone out that day and the ringer was not silenced. Suddenly "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star" was blaring across the room. That was the ring I had set for only my adoption agency. It took me a minute to realize what I was hearing and who would be on the other end of the line. I broke all the rules and answered the phone right there in front of my class. Fortunately it was good news. Almost the best besides the pink slip from the embassy, which means it's time to travel. And my class celebrated with me. It was a joyful moment.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Pictures

Thought I would share a few pictures from our recent snow day and a daily occurrence at our house. First the snow pictures...



We actually had about four inches in our part of the county. Friends across town had a dusting at most. We had so much fun!

Now for the daily toy retrieval that takes place in my kitchen... You see, Hannah Cat refuses to play with her toys anywhere except in the kitchen. Maybe it's because the toys slide around more easily on the linoleum than on the carpet? Who knows. Anyway, her toys eventually end up under the stove. There is a distinct "meow" that means "My toys are gone again. Please help." Gloria gets her little broom and her flashlight and goes to the rescue. Hannah is always eager to help. Here's what it looks like from my perspective...


And...SUCCESS! Here's your mousey, Hannah. She doesn't stick around long or say thank you. Just takes off batting and tossing it across the floor some more.