Sunday, August 31, 2008

Vietnamese Orphans

I think I would feel better about the length of time that governments take to facilitate adoptions if it were not for the fact that thousands and thousands of children were not waiting for families:

Saturday, August 30, 2008

You are worried about seeing him
spend his early years in doing nothing.
What! Is it nothing to be happy?
Nothing to skip, play, and run around all day long?
Never in his life will he be so busy again.
~Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Abyss and Harvest

It's hard you know. Change. It's hard for me. Hard for Nathan. Hard for Noah. I have felt for a few weeks the way I felt about 11 years ago. A friend told me it was as if I were on the edge of a cliff ready to jump. I think he thought I was jumping into a scary place. The truth is, I jumped into an incredible phase of growth and prosperity. I changed jobs, moved, met Nathan, and began the incredible spiritual journey bringing my closer to the Divine.

The truth is, I was jumping into the abyss. What I knew at that time was that my life was not as it should be and I needed to be the fool in terms of the find peace and contentment and my soul's longing.

Now, here I am again, at the edge of the abyss and about to jump. I'm working up the nerve. I am counting on Spirit to provide the cloud of hope and joy to lift me from the abyss into the light.

Noah has begun school and I find myself splitting my days between seriously cleaning, organizing and painting our home and job hunting. Right now, as things stand, I am waiting to hear if my Father has repurchased our old family business or whether I will be working somewhere else, such as the Mall. (I am guessing whatever job I have will begin in September). I am embarking on a new teaching journey that will begin in September. I am waiting to meet the Ethiopian representative for our adoption agency as we have begun revisiting that program (also the first week of September). And, in September I will begin offering a spiritual cinema movie and discussion group once a month at FUUN.

Amazingly, the last time I was on the edge of the abyss was in late August and the changes came fast and furious in September. It is part of the cycle of life. We are in the harvest time of the year. Llamas was the first harvest. We are quickly approaching the second harvest with the Autumnal Equinox. I know that I am in harvest mode for all of the things I have set into motion the past few months. I am looking forward to a bountiful harvest in my life and wish you one as well.

I'll keep you posted as these changes unfold in mine and my family's life.

China by Tori Amos


All the way to New York
I can feel the distance getting close
You're right next to me
But I need an airplane
I can feel the distance as you breathe
Sometimes I think you want me to touch you
How can I when you build the great wall around you
In your eyes I saw the future
Together you just look away in the distance

China decorates our table
Funny how the cracks don't seem to show
Pour the wine dear
You say we'll take a holiday
But we never can agree on where to go

Sometimes I think you want me to touch you
How can I when you build the great wall around you
In your eyes I saw the future
Together you just look away in the distance

China all the way to New York
Maybe you got lost in Mexico
You're right next to me
I think that you can hear me
Funny how the distance
Learns to grow

Sometimes I think you want me to touch you
How can I when you build the great wall around you
In your eyes I saw the future
Together you just look away in the distance

I can feel the distance
I can feel the distance
I can feel the distance getting close

Friday, August 22, 2008

The Big Day!

I know you are anxiously awaiting my report on the first day of school. The night before was a flurry of activity as we got all of our things together to get Noah to school on Wednesday. We all tried to get into bed early, though it was somewhat difficult. I think I finally fell into an exhausted sleep around 10PM.

I woke up around 5:30 and got up and began to get ready for our day. I woke Noah up at 6:30 and he immediately began crying "I do not want to go to school." He was crying so hard and I began crying and we cried together as I told him how much I love him and how special the time we've had is and how blessed we have been that he has gotten to stay home with me and I truly mean it. Nathan came in and we all hugged and then it was all okay. We finished getting ready and headed off to school.

Luckily, only the grades were coming on the first day not early childhood as it cut down a little on the craziness of the first day. We went in and greeted the teacher, Miss Wang and got Noah situated and then we left before I really lost it. I don't know how many people over the course of the morning asked me if I was okay. I guess the tears on my cheeks showed most of the day.

Nathan and I made our way down to the sanctuary (Noah's school rents out space in a church for the school) and we awaited all of the children to come in for the first day of school assembly. Each of the 1st graders had to walk across the stage and be presented a rose by the 8th graders as a symbol of welcome to the grades program.

After, Nathan and I left and went to visit his grandmother Allene in her senior living community in Brentwood. Unfortunately Grandma is in the advanced stages of Alzheimer's and added to the emotions of the morning, I had to excuse myself to the lobby where I sat gathering myself until time to return to pick up Noah from school.

We returned and waiting for the children to be let out of class and Noah came out all smiles. He had a great morning and each morning since has been happy to go to school. He is getting used to the schedule and loves the teacher and has made friends quickly, as I knew he would.

His teacher has told me repeatedly what a "good boy" and a "delight" he is to have in class. She is so sincere when she says it. As he has come home and reported that some of the children have been naughty in class, I know his behavior has been wonderful. It distresses him to see other children be mean to each other but especially to teachers. I guess we've done something right.

Other things we've done right: he loves books and is a great reader, well above his age; he says he loves math and grasps advanced math concepts; I could go on but that would be bragging!

Have a great day today with your child.

Monday, August 18, 2008

2 Days and Counting

I guess you are wondering what happened to the last 5 days!

Thursday: We vegged out at home, then Aunt ZiZi came over
Friday: Play date at Michelle's, then dinner and the Olympics with Dad and ZiZi
Saturday: Slept in! Afternoon at the Manchester pool, see slideshow below
Sunday: House hunting then a small party for Noah's class at school

Today Noah has a close friend playing over. They had a fun spend the night last night and are just playing today. Tonight we will begin our new nighttime routine getting us ready for school. Wish us luck!

Water Fun

Thursday, August 14, 2008

7 Days and Counting

Well, we had a blast today. We met some other parents and kids from Noah's class at Nashville Shores, a local water park. I can report that my Sunshine immediately wanted to hit the big slides. Gulp! No, let's get settled and go potty and do all of those fun things and then evaluate where to go first. In other words, let Mommy put off the big scary slide as long as possible.

He was not to be deterred.

So, after going to the lily pad obstacle course and showing his strength at that, we headed for, gulp, said big scary slide. Of course, I am not going down. But, I did walk him up. Thank goodness, the only dad with our group was up at the top with two of the other kids. Can Noah go down with you? Sure! Whew. So, I hurry back down the four flights of stairs and await my little guy at the bottom in the scary whirlpool at the bottom. After many waves and blown kisses between my very big very brave boy who is at the top and scared Mommy at the bottom, it was his turn. Down, down, down he came and splash. I'm okay. He's okay. He bounced up from the bottom and swam hard to get to the ladder on the side.

Look at you! You did it!

Do you want to go again?



It hurt my back.

He has done slides before and I know he was not scared. One of the moms had told me the slide hurts your back, so he was telling the truth (as if he would not).

So, we spent the rest of the day swimming, doing the lily pads and then playing mini golf. We are going back this weekend with Nathan so they can do the tube slides. I can't wait.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

8 Days and Counting

Well, the day isn't over but we've had a great time. This morning we went to the dentist and got to watch the Today show in Beijing. It was cool because they featured the tale and artifacts of the Dragon King which we read about in one of our Magic Treehouse books. Noah was very excited. Next we spend around 4 hours at our good friend Tasha's house. Tasha has a daughter and two brand new sons that she homeschools. We met to spend time with them before Noah starts school and to see our friends Brittney and her boys who are moving across country next week. Noah and I are home now vegging out and will probably lie down soon and read together. I am hoping to give him lots of fun and extra squeezes each day over the next week. So, counting down the days - 8 and counting.

Christian the Lion

Okay, everyone in the world has probably seen this, but this is the most touching thing I've seen in a long time. Please watch this remarkable video!

Christian the Lion

Monday, August 11, 2008

Counting the Days - 9 and Counting

Well, nine days to go to the big day. 1st Grade! Last week we had a home visit from Sunshine's 1st Grade teacher, Miss Wang. The visit was wonderful and she is an absolute delight. As much as I want him to go to school, as bored as he is at home and as ready as he is to is so bittesweet.

I cry when I think of him leaving home for (gulp) 7 hours per day. His day is really 6 hours but he will have to stay at school until hour 7 as we are working folk. Well,,,I'll be working soon and Nathan works, so we're working folk.

I know he will thrive in the Waldorf environment and his teacher will give him so much love and so many wonderful experiences, but he is 6 and he is my baby and I cry daily when thinking of his transition.

I want the next week and a half to be the best. He spent the weekend with his grandparents hiking and fishing and playing badmitton. Today we lounged around here reading and playing and he ran in the sprinklers. He is playing with the neighbors now. Check back as we will be counting down the days and relaying our adventures for the day.

I'll leave you with this....we were considering giving Noah a gift to commemorate his 1st day of 1st grade. One of the parents, German, told us of a German tradition of giving a cone filled with gifts on the that special first day. So, that's what we will do. Here is a link to a photo of a kid with a cone. Keep in mind this is a little bigger than we will use! Commercialism at its best. Keeps getting bigger!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Mamma Mia

Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan, ABBA and a Greek Island. What more can a girl want? Well, to see this movie with her best girlfriends. However, said girlfriends said they would rather "stick hot pokers in their eyes" than see this movie. So, I went with my best guy friend, whose name I shall not mention here.

Well, the opening of the movie was a bit slow and I was a little worried. You would have been, too. But, it soon picked up and what we have is a fabulous musical with some great actors/actresses. Meryl Streep still has the ability to wow me and Pierce Brosnan...well, he was a Bond....enough said.

None of the cast sings very well, but I don't think they are supposed to. The movie was cute and campy and is just a feel good story that all women should see with their best friends, mothers, sisters, etc.

I cried during several parts of the movie and was so moved over watching the main character - Donna - sing about the times she had with her daughter growing up. It may have been a little too close to home for me as I prepare to send Noah off to school in 9 short days. Where has the time gone?

So...see Mamma Mia. My MIL loved it even more than the Broadway version which she loved on Broadway!

See it today.