Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Addie & the stolen Reese's

 One lovely afternoon, Addison was riding her bike while wearing her favorite winter hat.
(One of her favorite things to do)

 She was so happy and all was well with the world.

 She was even laughing!!!  Then, it became very very quiet.  What was Addison doing?  Where had she gone?  I was curious.  So I went to her room to check on her.

 And there, on her bed, was the incriminating evidence.  She had snuck into her brother's room, stolen one of his Reese's and had eaten the enitre thing...which explains the quiet.  I promptly found her and told her "no.'   And then the drama ensued!!! Be my witnesses by viewing the photos below.

 Mind you, I only told her "no."  Nothing else..  Nothing. 

 Still crying.  More drama.

 Now she's peeking out to see if I'm still taking picures of her fit. 
Well yes I am!!!!

 One BIG tear!

Not a happy face..but she recovered!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Egg Hunt

Nick & Drew wrestling
Addison looking for Easter eggs in the flower pots.
I think she'd watching the older kids who were running all over the place trying to get to the eggs frist.  It was crazy!
Here's Jack running to get an egg.
Addison sitting with her little pile of eggs.
Nick was helping her count her eggs.
"Look at my eggs Daddy!"
Hummm...whats in these eggs?

Here's dad, videoing the entire thing.
Jack finally slowed down because some of the eggs were actually hard to find.

Addison was coutning and eating eggs with her cousins.
The boys threw the football around after the egg hunt.
The boys are trying to get open to catch the football.
Baby Owen eating his candy.
Addison loves chocolate!!!
All the cousins!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Easter Morning

Easter morning, Addison woke up and found her basket...She was delighted with all the chocolate and candy!  (I don't think she was quite awake in these first few photos!!)
She seems to be giving me "the eye" for taking so many photos so early in the morning.
Not too tired to eat some chocolate!!!
Here she is sitting on Drew's lap playing with Dad's iphone.  They were ready for church. 
Here are my sweet kiddos ready for Easter service. 
Here is the whole family!

Later that morning, my family came over for our traditional Easter brunch.  Here are my brother's kids; Cecelia., Corinne (The one that was so sick about 6 weeks ago) and Airyn.
In order from left to right: Jeremy, my brother; my mom; Mark; Sarah & Mike (my brother and his girlfriend)
My brother, Larissa and their kids.  I guess the kids weren't really inot smiling that day!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter Eggs

 Addison & I dyed Easter eggs together. (The boys decided they no longer wished to help..I guess they're too old now!)

 Here's Addison looking in the cup while the eggs turns color.

 Here are a portion of the eggs we colored.  She loved it!

 Here she is with all the eggs now brightly colored! 

 "Look at my eggs momma!"

After they dried, she put these stickers all over them!  She just loves stickers so I think this was her favorite part. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

A Year Waiting for Avery

Avery Faith Ha-rin  - Newborn

5 months old

5 months old - this was the first photo we saw of her!

10 months old

1 year old

1 year

1 year old - wearing the birthday hat we sent her

16 months

16 months

16 months

17 months

18 months old

18 months

It was a year ago today we were matched with Avery.  It was a miracle.  We were told by our agency that they weren’t seeing girls much at all anymore, and they certainly weren’t’ seeing girls that matched our profile.  It was discouraging.  We were told that on Tuesday and by Thursday we were matched with Avery.  It was simply God’s hand.  When we were matched with her, she was losing weight, had some bowl/digestive trouble and was behind developmentally.  The first time we received a report for monthly well-baby check they digestive issues had been resolved and she was beginning to gain weight.  Over the past year we have watched her become completely caught up in all areas except speech.  Her gains have been huge, and we are so grateful for her incredible progress.  God has been very kind and gracious to us. 
I am, however, very frustrated and sad she is still not home.  I pretty much quit hanging on every word or report issued by the agency.  Korea is not terribly up front about what they plan or will do, so my agency’s knowledge is limited so they have good guesses and educated predictions, but nothing that boils down to an absolute;  a “yes, this will definitely happen.” 
To be honest, most days are fine. I truck along, all is well, I do my day to day things, and am fine.  (This is a huge change from the first adoption where I was a wreck the whole time) But on occasion, just sometimes, I hit a wall and I just crash.  That describes this week.  I had, for some inexplicable reason, expected Holt would submit a group of Emigration Permits (EPs)  (This is the paperwork we’ve been waiting on for a full year now)  I knew we wouldn’t be in it, but we had been told it would be a big batch so I was hopeful there would be some good movement, which of course brings us closer to getting an EP too. 

I don’t know why I was expecting that to actually happen.  We’ve been told many things that haven’t happened.  In fact, I have stopped reading the Holt forum, I’ve stopped reading other adoption blogs, and I’ve stopped putting a whole lot of stock in the monthly updates from our agency because none of it matters.  Its all speculation and blind naïve hope based on nothing more than strong desire to get these babies home.  Its naïve and completely unrealistic, and I’m too far down this road to embrace baseless optimism.  My new-found realism has served me well because its allowed me to focus on each day as it comes, instead of banking my hope on a “speculative date” that usually doesn’t materialize.  This perspective has been a good shift for me.  It forced me to savor and be thankful for each day instead of suspending my peace and thankfulness till something occurs in the future.  I am thankful to have learned this, although I don't think its quite mastered yet.

But today, I find myself frustrated and sad.  Tomorrow marks a year -  I’ve been waiting a year for one piece of paper.  It makes me sad because I’ve missed a full year of my baby’s life with no foreseeable end.  I missed her first birthday, I missed Christmas, I can’t buy her an Easter dress – it’s just lost time.  That’s hard to swallow.  Its hard.  Its hard missing everything.  Its hard watching your baby grow up in pictures and be helpless to change her situation.  Its hard to walk into the room that her and Addison are supposed to share, see her crib, and know its still empty.  Its hard to see little clothes that she's long-since outgrown and will never wear.  Its just hard.

Its also frustrating to know that the delay is motivated by pride.  Korea doesn’t want to be known as the country that “exports its children” so instead, they impose thoughtless quotas which restrict the number of children who can leave the country for adoption each year.  This number is decreased every year regardless of the number of children in foster care.  So although on paper it looks like they’re reducing international adoptions, all that is really happening is the number of children who are languishing in foster homes is exploding and birthmothers are being turned away when they come for help.  Its morally unethical, motivated by pride, and a horrible way to treat children and mothers.  I'm not elevating the USA or demeaning Korea; all gevernments will make decisions out of pride, self-perservation and public opinion...its certianly not unique to Korea!  It just happens to impact my daughter, her foster family and us in a dramatically negative and heartwrenching way.
So I’m sad and frustrated.  Its not the place I plan to dwell.  Its not where I’m going to stay.  But today - this week, its where I am at.  Being sad isn’t a sin and being angry about destructive politics fueled by pride isn’t a sin either.  I won’t stay here.  God is too good and He is so faithful that I can’t stay here long.  But now, this is where I find myself.  I find myself grieving the year I’ve lost and the baby I’ve yet to hold.
Ecclesiastes 3:4
Top of Form Bottom of Form(There is ..) a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,

Romans 12:15-16
Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another.