Sunday, December 28, 2008

Four years ago today...

....I became a Mommy when they placed Shaye in my arms. It was right around this time of day, too, that Caroline called with the news (2pm)!

Happy metcha/cake day my sweet little love!!!!

My first glimpse of you 12/28/04

Mommy and her girl

Then two years later to the exact day, my Laela came from the hospital and joined our family (I still think it's so bizarre that Shaye and Laela have the same metcha day!)

Laela on her coming home day

Laela at Annabeth & Mayela's wedding

December 28, 2004 was the happiest day of my life. Today is a VERY special day for me. :D

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Birth parents!

It's really bizarre to me that we met Naia's birthmom and just a few weeks later we met Shaye's birthmom (before Laela was born). Then on Thanksgiving we met Naia's birthfather and today we got to meet Shaye's paternal aunt, grandmother and great grandmother! We didn't get to see her birthfather, but we did get pictures of photo's they had. Immediately, when I saw her biological aunt I was STUNNED! I always knew that Shaye must resemble the paternal side of her dna than maternal....and DOES she! Holy crap. There is no denying who her paternal birth family is!!! I will be posting some photos on my account for those of you on my protected list. I can't wait to meet him someday. We also found out that Shaye's paternal ethnicity is Mexican, French, and Native American. We know on her maternal side it is Chilean.

In other birthmom news, my Mommy is going to be here tomorrow at 4pm!!! YAAAAYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!! I am so excited that my Mom will be spending Christmas and Laela's birthday with us. It will be the first time she has ever met Laela and only the 2nd time she has met Shaye and Naia!! I hate that she won't fly (she's on an Amtrak train at this very moment!) so that we could see her more often. But this will definitely be a Holly Jolly Christmas for my family!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

School tours. Blah.

My last tour (for now) was yesterday at an K-8 Open school about 5 miles from home. I wanted to be *SO* impressed. I thought this was really going to be our first choice at open enrollment (vs. our REAL first choice which is to leave her at her current private Montessori school and the 2nd best option is a Montessori charter school). I have heard so many good things about this school and their API is off the chart this year at 907 (that's impressive!). I attended a parent info. tour at another K-6 Open school and fell madly in love with their classrooms, theory, teachers, really had that WOW factor. Even the group of parents that I toured the school with were left standing with their jaws open. It was seriously the next best thing to Montessori. I thought this K-8 school would send me over the edge and I was confident that I would like it even more.

But.......(and you knew it was coming)......

I wasn't wow'd. I was not even really that impressed. What I liked about the K-6 school is that it had a cozy feel to their classrooms, SWEET teachers (and I really get a vibe about people almost immediately), super smart, happy children that were really excited to be at their school. The classroom was physically very spacious with cute reading lofts and no individual desks. All the children work in groups (according to their ability levels - some alone and some with a volunteer parent) as opposed to having 20 or 30 children all sitting around with one teacher. We walked into a 4th grade class at the K-8 school and there were probably 30+ children in there, all sitting at their own desk, it was MAJORLY cramped in the room, and the were all doing the exact same work, at the exact same time, with the exact same teacher. It really felt awkward to me. At least the K-6 school had a very Montessori-ish feel about it even without the materials. The teachers at the K-8 school seem a little up tight (I actually know one of them because Shaye went to school with her son and I honestly always found her very odd) and overall they just didn't ooze "respect the child", ya know? So, I guess our decision has been made for open enrollment purposes. I think we'll put our first choice as the K-6 school and see what happens. Enrollment is done by computer generated random lottery and I have heard that there is a currently a waiting list of 117 kids. Ugggggggggh. That really sucks. So, chances are if you don't get in via the lottery, you are S.O.L.

The Montessori charter school has 2 campuses that I am touring in Jan. and they are not a part of the school district open enrollment, so I still have hope (and a good gut feeling) that we will be selected to get into that school. There is also talk about our current school to start a first grade program. If that's the case, we may just stay in private school if we don't get selected for the charter. There is also a K-8 private Montessori school a few miles from our current school that may be an option, but it's pricey. The older kids even work towards a HAM radio license and do a lot of really interesting work like that. I don't want to put my kids into a school and then pull them out in 3rd grade due to finances. It's an amazing school, but I'd definitely have to go back to work and I'm SOOOO not ready to do that yet. ;)

The bottom line is that I can't see past Montessori at this point. There truly is no education quite like it.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A slightly delayed Christmas

I have been avoiding putting up our tree due to the two kittens in our house. Oh, they will definitely be perched at the top at some point - I'm sure of it. Tonight I put all the lights up on the outside of the house. I got all the lights up, plugged them in, and.....nothing. All 3 strings were completely DEAD! So, bless Caroline's heart, she went and bought us all new lights for the house tonight! When she came home, I put the lights up in the dark and went CRAZY this year! We even have lights around our door, on the wreath on the door, and all across the front yard and down the side. Really, I outdid myself. ;)

One thing that struck me as so bizarre while I was out there. I was in a pair of cut off sweat pant shorts stringing lights around a palm tree. Huh? Right now in Baltimore it's below freezing and they are probably due for snow any day. It's so weird living in an area that is actually warm on Christmas. And by warm, I'm talking mid to upper 50's during the day. I don't even own a real winter coat.


Our friends Chelsea and little William visited us today. I remember going into the NICU 3 years ago and seeing this little boy. It literally made me gasp out loud when I saw him for the first time. He was only 2 lbs. 2 oz. and was no bigger than a Coke can with a tennis ball head. He was born early at 26 weeks. Thank the universe he is 100% FINE now and is a big 3 year old (he and Naia are gestationally about the same age). They were outside and got distracted by the crayons. ;)


Shaye has been obsessed with the moveable alphabet at school. Then she comes home and wants to spell more words. Here she is making her "little book of 'at' words". She starts with "at" and then adds different letters to make different "at" words (bat, cat, rat, hat, sat, mat, etc.) After she uses the moveable alphabet to spell out the word, she then spells it out on paper. When it's all done, we turn it into a little book. She is just SO proud of herself! I'm so excited that she is so interested in learning to read so early.

My girl is obsessed with spelling and reading these days

Doing her "at' words

Another obsession has been the hundred board. As happy as I am to see her taking such an interest in the math area, I cringe when she wants to do this at home (which is almost daily) because it takes a long time for a 4 year old to go from 1 to 100 (an hour +) and she wants Mommy to sit and watch her. Her teacher at school said she has really been spending a lot of time doing math. I asked last week because every night Shaye wants to count "as high as she can" and I can't even get through 2 pages of reading her a book without her wanting to count every object on the page.

Shaye and Naia figuring out the hundred board together

Happy weekend!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

I want a new house!!!

Today when I was picking Shaye up from school, one of her classmate's Grandmother called the school and asked me if I could bring her grandson home. I just adore this woman and she only lives about a mile from the school, so I gladly took him home. When I pulled into their drive I was just blown away by their property! She said it's one and a half acres, completely fenced with a cute little white security fence all the way around the property. They have a pot belly pig (that was SO cool!) and 3 dogs and next week they are getting two miniature donkeys and 2 alpacas! HOW FREAKIN' COOL!!! I grew up in a house with about the same acreage and about 10 acres of forest behind me and it was so awesome! When I was in elementary school, the house across from us was a farm with about 25 acres of corn fields. Oh man...those are some of the best memories I have as a kid. That is the kind of house I want my kids to have - now while they are little and can enjoy tree swings and rock piles and dirt and jumping in raked leaves and explore little critters.


She invited us to stay and let the kids play and when we left Shaye threw a major tantrum like I have never seen before. It just makes me realize what they are missing out on by living on .19 of an acre in a housing development.


Talk about a downer!

I've visited 3 public alternative schools this week, so far. The first school was an Open school and it scared the HELL out of me. The second school was another Open school that would definitely be high on my list if it were K-8. Unfortunately, it's only K-6 *AND* I just can't see past Montessori anymore no matter how good a school is. The third school was a fundamental school and I was more horrified of this school than the first Open school I saw. I wanted to visit a fundamental school to get a better idea of what their theory was and, well, now I know. YUK! One of their discipline techniques is to make a child go sit at a table and put their head down!! When I told Shaye's Montessori teacher that she had a look of horror on her face and said, "What exactly is that teaching the child other than how to be degraded?" I was so glad she said that. Right on the heels of that, a little boy in Shaye's class was laying down on the floor in circle and she simply distracted him by calling him over to help with snack. I am so in love with her teacher. :::sigh:::: I also visited a private montessori school yesterday that is PreK-8th grade and it was pretty damn amazing. The only bad thing I saw is that it is in a very ritzy, republican, rich neighborhood and I can't see myself or my children relating to the other mom's and kids in that school. Plus, to send all 3 of my kids there it would cost $15,000 a year! ACK! We could swing 1 kid, maybe 2, but not 3 of 'em. Then I also set out to find another Montessori charter school in the county next to ours, but my car's navigation system apparently had an old address. I gave up after 30 minutes of driving around aimlessly. I came home and looked at their website and it's not that much farther than where the kids go to school now, so I guess it's another option. My tour with the Montessori school that is our first choice is in January and I am counting down the days. I can't wait to see their program. I have heard so many good things about it that I hope I'm not let down. I have come to realize that I have pretty high standards in a school (it's amazing how many parents don't :( ).

Thursday, December 4, 2008

The love of a big sister

All 3 girls are running up and down the hall, screaming, in Princess shoes - CHAOS! It's sheer CHAOS!! I love listening to that sometimes (when I'm not cranky! LOL!) and today is one of those days that I am just letting them do their sister thing. They are all really into each other right now

This is what just ensued:

Laela: :::WAILING::::comes running to Mommy::::
Mommy: What happened? ::::picking up the wailing baby::::
Shaye: Mommy, I just slipped in the hallway in my socks and landed on Laela.
Mommy: Aww..poor baby. :::telling Laela that she is ok::::
Laela: Stops screaming bloody murder and is now just whimpering

So, I put Laela down and tell Shaye to give her a hug so she understands that you didn't mean to hurt her and Shaye says,

"Laela, I'm sorry. Do you want to play now? Come on baby sister."

:::clopCLOPclopCLOP::: And they all run off down the hallway screaming again.
I heard this song by Rascal Flatts yesterday while flipping through the XM channels and really loved the lyrics. I can already see another short little video in pre-production. ;) It just describes everything that I went through with infertility which eventually led me to my daughters. I love when I find a song like this.


There's a place I've been looking for
That took me in and out of buildings
Behind windows, walls and doors
And I thought I found it
Couple times, even settled down
And I'd hang around just long enough
To find my way back out
I know now the place that I was trying to
Was you, right here in front of me

And I wouldn't change a thing
I'd walk right back through the rain
Back to every broken heart
On the day that it was breakin'
And I'd re-live all the years
And be thankful for the tears
I've cried with every stumbled step
That led to you and got me here, right here

It's amazing what I let my heart go through
To get me where it got me
In this moment here with you
And it passed me by
God knows how many times
I was so caught up in holding
What I never thought I'd find
I know now, there's a million roads
I had to take
To get me in your arms that way

In a love I never thought I'd get to get to
And if that's the road
God made me take to be with you

And I'd re-live all the years
And be thankful for all the tears
I've cried with every stumbled step
That led to you and got me here, right here

And speaking of adoption, yesterday was Shaye's full day at school. They have dance class on Wed. and they also had a birthday celebration. When I got there, my favorite little boy in Shaye's class was there (he's not usually there for dance, but he has decided he wants to now..hehehe...) and so was his mom. Her and I started chit chatting (which turned out that we yip yapped for an hour and I didn't even leave the school until 5!) and during our conversation she just casually mentioned, "When we adopted J and his older brother A......" and I think my jaw hit the floor. I had *NO* idea that this little boy was adopted!!!!! I think I've blogged about him before, but he is truly the sweetest little fella I have ever met. He always goes out of his way to wave to me when I walk Shaye in for the morning and always has a huge smile on his face. He LOOOOOOOOOVES Shaye (I can't stress that enough) and Shaye absolutely adores him (talks about him constantly). Sometimes when I go in to pick Shaye up he is waiting with her (since he is also a half day student) and every single time I see him he runs to me and throws his arms around me in the sweetest way and gives me a huge hug. He is such a gentle little boy and is so gentle with Shaye. I always joke around and tell the teacher and his mom that I am going to start planning their wedding now.

So, I talked with his mom for an hour and we shared adoption stories and it was TRULY amazing to find out how he joined his family. I have always felt a pull towards this little boy and now it makes me wonder if I felt that connection because he was adopted? Hmm....

Shaye and Joel run off to the hay house

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Feeling icky and googly all at the same time

Last night I started aching and my throat was sore and I feel like I was injured by a speeding car. This morning I feel a little better, but my throat still hurts a little. My sweetie is staying home with me today and she took the kids to school this a.m. I don't know how single parents do it. In moments like this, I really, really feel for them. At least I don't feel so flu-like this a.m.

Last night before going to bed, Shaye was laying between Caroline and I (as always) and all she wanted to do was see how high she could count!! It was so dang cute. I think I heard her hit 30 before I was asleep. Heheheh.. Before her counting spell, right as the lights went out, she leaned over, kissed me on the cheek, and whispered in the sweetest little girl voice, "Mommy? I love you more than anything in the world." That did it. It was officially the sweetest thing she has ever said to me. Then right after that she said, "Mommy? Do you know today is a new month? Today is December 1st." LOL!

WOW! I am so incredibly thankful to be a mommy to these babies. I just can't even imagine my life without them. Last night I fell asleep feeling like crap, but feeling so incredibly blessed.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Birthfathers and bio sisters

We finally got to meet Naia's birth father!!! On Thanksgiving he was at her birthmom's house, so we took a drive over. He's a really quiet guy that was EXTREMELY nervous about meeting us. He's definitely tall (6'4") and he said that he is also part German. Something we did not know. He was very nice and it was great meeting him on Thanksgiving so that we could tell him and her birthmom, together, how very thankful we are four our little Naia Blueberry. I'll have pictures once I have a sec to download.

We also got to spend the day yesterday with Shaye's 6 year old biological sister. Shaye cried so hard when she had to leave. It broke my heart into a bazillion pieces. Her bio sis was also heartbroken and we told her that when she comes over for Laela's birthday that she could have a sleep over that weekend with us. She and her father moved out of West Sac and are now living in a beautiful (I can't stress this enough!) foothill community that is AWESOME! She is in a much better school and out of the influence of West Sac. I am just so happy for that little girl and I am so grateful that Shaye and Laela will grow up knowing her. Oh, and do I have some incredible pics of the day.

More to come....

Thinking of kindergarten

I can not believe that next week is when our district starts tours of the elementary schools and open enrollment is in early January!!! I am desperately trying to go through a list of about 5 or 6 elementary schools and determine which of them I want to tour with Shaye. This is seriously going to be one of the hardest decisions that Caroline and I ever make. I mean, what if we pick the wrong school? I certainly don't want Shaye to get used to a school, the teachers, the children and then find out it's just not working and have to switch her. This is even worse than my preschool search.

Because she has been attending Montessori preschool and I absolutely, 100%, truly, without a shadow of a doubt believe in this method of education, I want her to continue Montessori through 8th grade. Shaye just turned 4 a few weeks ago and already is reading and writing and taking such an interest in both. Montessori is utterly amazing and it's a great fit for her. So, our first choice would be a tuition free charter Montessori school about a 1/2 mile from our house. They also have another campus a few miles away and that would be our 2nd choice. Beyond that, there are three "Open" schools all within 5 miles from our house. I also really love the idea of sending our children to one of these schools. Here is a brief description for those of you who aren't familiar with what an Open school is:

We are guided by a unified philosophy that provides a high quality, standards-based, and comprehensive elementary school education. This is called the Open Philosophy and is based, in part, on Piaget’s developmental learning theory, Dewey’s constructivist learning theory, Montessori’s use of manipulative materials, and Kohl’s thematic, integrated curriculum.

In Open classrooms, emphasis is placed on individuality and reaching each child’s potential. We have found that the best way to provide for this is through the following practices and themes:


At its most basic, this term refers to the notion that all children should be recognized as unique beings with their own strengths and weaknesses. They ought not be taught as if they were all at the same ability level with the same interests.
We expect all students, no matter their starting points, to go further.
We use flexible learning groups to target students' needs, styles, and interests.
Experiential learning and constructivism:

We have long held true to the proverb, I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand.
We emphasize hands-on learning, the use of manipulative materials, and real life experiences.
Because we recognize that the environment is an extension of the classroom, we emphasize field education and community involvement as a critical part of real learning.
We know that real learning is discovery, even if it's guided, facilitated discovery, and we strive to communicate the sense of wonder inherent in learning new things.
Student-centered collaborative classrooms

We care for the whole child and are concerned with each child and are concerned with each child's physical, social, emotional, and intellectual development.
We velieve that even as academic standards are imbedded in the curriculum, the classroom and the curriculum ought also reflect our students' interests and that students should be given the power to explore their curiosity and imagination.
Student Empowerment:

As educators, one of our chief goals is to teach our students to take responsibility for their own learning; by doing so we seek to create a community of self learners.
We acknowledge that honoring student voice and student choice leads to the students' feelings of empowerment and ownership in their own learning.
We teach with high expectations and emphasize quality.
We teach and promote student reflection and self assessment.
We believe in cooperative participation in learning and in life.
We emphasize doing one's personal best, competing against oneself rather than against others, and working for intrinsic rather extrinsic rewards.

At our school we are committed to the idea that parents are an integral part of the learning experience, both inside and outside the classroom. Learning is best accomplished when teachers, parents, and students work as a team. Hand in hand, as part of the team making academic choices, setting goals, and evaluating progress, students become responsible lifelong learners.

There are also a couple of Fundamental schools I want to tour just to try and understand how they will differ from the Open schools and the Montessori school. If we just can't find a school that we like, we will more than likely keep her in her current school for kindy, but I really, really want to ditch the tuition payment so we can bump Naia up to 5 half days a week next year. Then of course with the next school year, Laela will be 3 (OMG!) and we will more than likely enroll her into our current school for 3 half days a week.

The pressure is giving me eye twitches. How on earth am I going to get through this and feel that we have made the right education choice for our children????????

Sunday, November 23, 2008

The Montessori birthday celebration moved me to tears. I've said this a zillion times, but I am just so thankful for the school my children attend. Shaye's teacher and teacher assistant are amazing women who love and adore her and it honestly blows my mind that we could be so lucky. Both teachers (and the chef of the school!) showed up for her birthday party on Saturday night at Chuck E. Cheese's (which, by the way, was the WORST possible place to EVER hold a birthday and we will NEVER do it again! The kids had a great time, but the service was awful and mass confusion ensued when I was being surrounded by 40 children asking for tokens and they had YET to bring them to us. Uggh).

Anyway, how many teachers do you know that take the time to show up to their student's birthday party? And her lead teacher was just recently married and has no children!! They also helped to wrangle the children and helped us make sure everybody had food and drink. It was utterly amazing and I was so appreciative and in awe of these women. I think that as a teacher that is just a normal gut instinct to get in there and help - especially when you know most of the children there. About 13 children from her class came to her party (and at least 15 to 20 of our friend's children) and can I just say that I have never seen so many God damned presents in my entire life for one child??? Jesus, I'm a little afraid that we might need that bigger house sooner than later.

I am watching my children blossom every single day and they are thriving in their school environment. I can only hope their love of education stays with them. I definitely think this is laying the best foundation for them.

Here's a little video I put together of the school celebration...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Ok, don't get too excited. ;) She's not ours (but oh she is heartbreakingly beautiful and I'd take her in a heartbeat!). Our friends James and Elizabeth are in the process of adopting a brand new little sweetie pie (from foster care) and it sounds as if E is going back to work and has asked if I can take care of the little muffin for her!! Oh, this makes me SO excited since I am no longer watching the little girl that I watched for 4 years and was starting to wonder if I need to go get that job at my favorite thrift store. ;) I'd *MUCH* rather snuggle a little baby all day long! I don't have any details yet, but this will be a PERFECT situation!!! When one door closes, another one opens.

C and I have our foster license on hold to take care of a few issues around the house. I really, really wanted to do emergency placement of infants, but we need to take another CPR/first aid class and we have a few other things in the house to change around. Now that I will be watching baby snuggle muffin, we may not foster for awhile. Since Shaye was placed with us I have dreamed of picking babies up from the hospital, taking a bazillion pics, video, putting together a baby book, etc. I just want the adoptive parents to be able to have information on their baby for those first 6 weeks of their lives. So many foster parents don't take ONE stinking picture of those babies (like Shaye's former foster mom) and I want to do that for families.

Speaking of Shaye, my little angel is going to be FOUR tomorrow. I thought I'd put a few pics of her up on my blog throughout the years. Every single day it's still amazing to me that I'm her Mommy.

The night she came to us she was 5 1/2 weeks old:

Mama and daughter

My first glimpse of you 12/28/04

About 4 months old:

How long can I hold my breath?

6 months old:

The official six months photo 5/19/05

1 year old:

Proud Mommy

2 years old:

Our running toddler

Shaye in pumpkin patch 2006

3 years old:



And now, she's 4!!!!!

I could kiss this face a billion times a day and it wouldn't be enough.


Tomorrow she is going to have a "Montessori Birthday" at school which I am SO excited for!!! We ordered up some cupcakes for Safeway and she is so excited that she can barely contain herself.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Courtesy of our dear friend Amy who says, "This about sums it up." I agree.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

How will I sleep tonight?

Well, it looks as if Californians have spoken. They value the lives of chickens (Prop 2) more than the well being of my family (Prop 8). How will I explain that to my children tomorrow?

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

Losing sleep

My friends, I have been so lame at writing in my blog these days because my family has been incredibly busy. I have to say that I have literally been losing sleep over this whole California Proposition 8 train wreck. I wake up at 4am every single night and can't get back to sleep. I have signs in my yard saying NO ON 8 and my MIL/FIL's sign was actually stolen from their property a few nights ago. What assholes!! This is America!! I may not agree with you, but there is FREE FUCKING SPEECH. Sport your Yes on 8 signs if you must, but stay the fuck off my property!!!

And this is why I use a Mac:

Friday, October 10, 2008

This makes me fucking sick to my stomach. What is wrong with this nation??????? I want my children to be able to love and marry who THEY want to, not what the government says.

Anybody who votes yes on Proposition 8 - shame on you. Shame. Shame.

Friday, October 3, 2008

I'm so incredibly sad tonight

My first kitten was placed in his new home tonight and I'm devastated. I loved him so very much. Shaye named him "Love" because he was a "lovie kittie" and it broke my heart to see him leave our house. He lept out of his new Mama's arms and ran back towards our house which made me cry so hard. Yoshi's not sure what's going on. heart is just breaking. Why do I have to love animals so much.
We still need homes for 2 of our kitties. It's breaking my heart. In pieces. I'm moving to a farm.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Why life is SO worth living...

Shaye was putting on her pj's tonight and my heart just melted. The best thing I have ever done with my life is having these children. This was the conversation:

Mommy: Shaye, you are such a big girl!! How did you grow up so fast? I remember when Mommy had to dress you because you didn't know how and now look at you! Putting on your pj's all by yourself. I used to dress you and then snuggle with you and rock you to sleep. Do you remember that?
Shaye: Yep. I'm a big girl now. I can do it all by myself.


Shaye: ....but Mommy, you can still hold me when I'm all grown up.

That's when the tears welled up. :::sniffSNIFFsniff::::

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I'm so impressed!

Today when I dropped Shaye off at school I went over and sat down on the rug next to two little girls who were doing something with the USA puzzle map. My curiosity was piqued, so I made myself comfortable to watch. I asked how old they were, one turned 4 in March, one will be 5 in Feb (so they are older than Shaye). They had a blank 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper with the USA map on it, colored pencils, and they were coloring in the states accordingly:

Montessori materials

(by the way, is it horrible to call Florida "that bad state that doesn't like families to have 2 mommies" when we're doing the puzzle?) ;)

To me, it's fascinating that a 4 year old would take out this work and sit and color STATES (and do a GOOD job at staying in the lines!) And they weren't doing the easy western states either. They were doing states such as Vermont, Rhode Island, New know, all those small New England states! WHOA! It was so cute to see them sitting next to each other with their own little clipboards and papers and pencils while both looking at the map. Wow wow wow!

On a more adult note. Damn, this made me laugh:

Here's another Craigslist Best Of that actually made me laugh outloud a few times:

My kids are a pain in the ass. Just in the past hour, i have had to tell each one to do something more than once. oldest: can i have soda? it's just a sprite? please? can i? no, no and no.
the next one...don't even get me started. seriously.
the twin six year olds: one wanted dessert before her dinner was over, one kept wanting to know why I wouldn't let nine year olds swing her around by her limbs. (the fear of a dislocated shoulder did nothing.)
Please help me.
I can be a tad difficult to work for. I'm loud, pushy and while I used to think we paid well, i am no longer sure. i work from home, so you get the pleasure of being hounded by me all day long. and, you get to pretend to like me, because i am deeply sensative. (but well dressed and a know it all, a winning combination I assure you.)
If you cannot multi task, or communicate without being passive aggressive, don't even bother replying.
If you are the type who doesn't notice crumbs on the table, skip to the next post, because crumbs are a deal breaker. they put me over the edge.
i have all sorts of theories on how to stack my dishwasher, and if you are judgemental about ritalin for adhd, or think such things are caused by too much sugar, again, deal break city.
You do get a separate entrance excellent studio on the ues. you do get air conditioner and internet connection and cable. even hbo. and showtime. you can bring your spouse, roommate or partner, but sorry no kids. If you ask, can i bring my kid, the answer will be...anyone? anyone? No.
If you can cook, all the better. otherwise, i'll teach you all sorts of things about pasta. (Here's a freebie, butter and parmesean, mmmmmm)
If you know anything about chess and violin i will be impressed.
We are not snobs, which is good. but then again, my kid sometimes swears to make a point. (We're working on it, but halfheartedly, because, well the apple doesn't fall far from the fucking tree.)Although I am told they are all very bright, they have not mastered the use of the oh so complicated napkin. This is a napkin Junior, say it after me...Nap Kin. Good boy.
i am not looking for Super nanny, or anyone who wants this job because they will love my kids as if they are their own. you won't. really. they are infinitely lovable, but trust me, they're mine and you will move on when your journey with us is over, and save for some funny stories and a delightful email every now and again, you won't grieve. Nor will we. (okay, we did all grieve a few of our past sitters, oddly they were all named Sarah or Kate, or Nikki. And Leah. Leah was delightful, even if she did drop my twin babies off our couch during a family gathering. Good times.
I don't want someone who has a lot of theories on the right way to raise kids, because in the end, I'm just a woman doing my best. I'm willing to learn from you, or anyone, but not so much about how i should parent my spawn. teach me to knit. introduce me to yoga, the white stripes, russian literature or the best place to get a burger in the village at 2Am, but do not tell me to put star stickers on a good boy chart. stickers irritate me.
If you are fundamentally unhappy with your life, you will be more unhappy if you take this job, so do us all a favor and get some treatment or move to the Rockies, but do not apply for employment with us. Also, if you suspect all wealthy women are frivilous, we are not for you. I do not want to hide my occasional bergdorf shopping bag.
If you smoke, please quit. don't apply either, but please quit. i have known too many people diagnosed with cancer this year. Even if you are a judgemental nanny 911 wannabe, no one should have to endure some of the things I have wittnessed.
You gotta be able to drive with a valid license, but if you've ever hit a human,move to the next post. You won't have to drive in the city, but if we go to our weekend place together, or if you make it to the summer and still work for us, we need you to run into town to get some pink milk, so be able to drive a mini van.
Can you swim? Swimming is good.
If you do drugs or drink enough so that you are grumpy in the morning and grumpier at night prior to that next cocktail, call AA, and peruse craigslist childcare positions when you have a year sober. I'll probably be looking again, and now is the time for you to focus on yourself anyway.
I need a team player. I need someone to back me up when it comes to remembering when the library books are due, and whether i have rsvped to that birthday party yet.
Help me dear G-d keep track of our skim milk supply and also, also, also, what should I make for dinner tomorrow night?

the hours are 7 in the morning to 8:30 in the morning. We'd be in it together, getting the kids out with clean faces, brushed teeth and some food in their bellies. Doesn't that sound easy? Doesn't that sound doable?
Then come on back for a fun filled afternoon 2:15-8:15 of activities and playdates and snacks and dinners and homework and riveting conversations about global warming, hannah montana and guitar hero.
When you do get to go home (to that swanky studio and possibly a significant other or buddy) your time off will be respected. If I would like you to give extra hours, i'll ask. if you say yes, you get paid 15/ hour. if you say no, I will not fire you or hate you. Except if it is a school holiday or if i have a sick kid, then i might ask, and unless you have a final exam worth 2/3 of your grade or tix The Lion King, you may need to help out.
Okay, if you're still reading this ad, it means:
a) i am a halfway decent writer and maybe i really will get that book deal i'm yearning for
b) you need a job desparately
c) you think this just might be destiny, and that you could be one of the few, the proud, the potential babysitter of our dreams.
D) you want all the information about job requirements, so that you can write me emails about how I should stay home with my kids otherwise they are going to grow up to be sociopaths. (If my pen pal is out there, wassup? Found love yet? No? How 'bout that.)
best of luck to all of you in your search for a job. Seriously. Job searching sucks. No two ways about it.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Shaye's new word

Here's the convo I just had with Shaye while she was coloring her little heart out:

Out of nowhere she says,
Shaye: Mommy, a meteorologist tells us the weather (said with SUCH excitement in her voice and complete clarity).
Me: :::sitting there looking at her with my mouth open then finally saying:::: WOW Shaye, you are right!! A meteorologist DOES tell us the weather. How did you know that?
Shaye: I learned it at school.
Me: You did? Who told you about meteorologists?
Shaye: Miss Karla told us about them and how they can tell us the weather.
Me: Go Miss Karla!


I swear, she can say the word better than *I* can!! I just sat there laughing and shaking my head in amazement! So, now I promised to show her our little hottie meteorologist in the morning on the news (Monica Woods...ohhhhh...she's easy on the eyes!)

Sunday, August 31, 2008

What's better than going thrifting?

Going thrifting when it's 30% off!! YAHHHHHH!

Today I scored a game from 1965 called Trouble (I played this as a kid and for it being 43 years old it's in great shape!) for only $1.39, a wooden puppet theater for $9.00, a wooden ironing board for $2.00, a cute realistic looking turtle (the girls are obsessed with Schleich animals) for pennies, binoculars (Shaye has been begging for some!) for $1.50, and two cute little kid tin trays that look pretty vintage (they have legs that pop out on the bottom so you can sit on the floor and use the tray to draw, eat, build Lego's, whatever for just under 3 bucks. One has an "ABC circus" and one has monkey fire fighters. They are SO cute! We also got a few pants and shirts and I found a Leap Frog phonics radio (retails for something crazy like $25!) for $1. I may just sell that on Craigslist though.

I've been thinking about my current obsession and I know there is money to be made by buying stuff up at Thrift stores for dirt cheap ($2 and less!) and reselling on Craigslist or eBay for 10 times the amount. I might give it a whirl and see what happens.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Another score for the home team!

Are there support groups for thrift store addiction? Because Caroline is definitely going to send me to one. Ok, so when I go I usually spend anywhere from $5 to $20, but it's EVERY week...sometimes twice a week. I really gotta stop. But when you see a deal like this, you just gotta admit that you did the right thing by spending the money. ;)

I have wanted this for the girls since last Christmas, but there was just something about spending $60 plus $20 for each game that really turned me off. I did buy them a Leap Pad and a Leapster from Toys R Us and I would say they are much nicer and my kids really play with them alot (Shaye is alllllllllll about letters and numbers these days). I was in my favorite all time thrift store yesterday and found it for SIX (!) dollars!!! That is 90% off the retail price. Heh. I brought it home, put new batteries in it and it works great. I can say that I am really, really glad I didn't spend $60 on this game. It's not all that. I would say it was worth $6 though.

I also found one of these and made little "mail cards" out of wood from Michael's (I'll post pics later) and the girls are LOVING it! I spent something like $2.99 on it.

It's amazing how many cute wooden trays you can find for your home Montessori shelf, too.

It's such a rush when you find such awesome things!!!!!

Friday, August 29, 2008


I'm not sure if I've ever blogged about this, but I thought it was worth a mention (ahem, name drop).  Back in the day, in the late 80's/early 90's there was a really great local Baltimore band called Beyond Words which eventually morphed into a band called Love Riot.  My band, The Wanting Seed (I played drums), used to play with them often around the local Baltimore area original music club scene.  Ahhh....those were the days.   Two of the folks from Beyond Words/Love Riot were Lisa Matthews and Mikel Gehl.  Not to brag, but pretty much everybody around the local original music scene knew who The Wanting Seed and Beyond Words were.  We were two of the bands that played alot and had good size followings and we played together frequently and hung out.  The local music scene in the 80's and 90's was incredible.  A tight group of folks that supported each other by either playing clubs together and coming out to support each other when they weren't playing their own gigs.  Everybody knew everybody, ya know? 

Fast forward to 2004 when I became a mom and started to notice all the little kid shows on TV.  One of the only one's I could stomach was Barney...nah...just kidding!  It's called Jack's Big Music Show and I always thought it was really cool that they would have *real* musicians as guests (like Sweet Honey in the Rock, Cathy Richardson, Lisa Loeb, Yolanda Adams, Buddy Guy etc.).  And one of the best children's artists around, Laurie Berkner, who has been called "the Ani DiFranco of kid's music".  There were a few songs from the show done by bands such as Hot Peas and Butter that were actually REALLY REALLY catchy.  Even though it was music about numbers and letters, from a drummer/musician perspective, it freakin' rocked out!!  I always had to chuckle because I went from drummer in a really cool original, regionally well known, band to jammin' out to a band called Hot Peas and Butter! LOL!!

Ok, so getting back to the point, one of the bands that I really, really liked was a band called Milkshake.  There was one Jack's Big Music Show episode that I had DVR's for about 8 months called "Marching Band" where Jack and Mary (the characters) can't go out and march because it's raining outside.  Milkshake performs a "video" called "Sunshine" on that episode and it really and truly a happy, fun song.  I watched this episode almost every day for 6 months because Shaye was ADDICTED to it.  Seriously, every day she would sit for 30 minutes glued to the TV to watch this show.  So, I heard this song and saw this video a lot.  A lot.  Oh, many, many, many times.  I used to think, "Why do those people look so damn familiar to me?", but I just brushed it off and thought, like me, they were probably once really cool pop/alternative musicians who now have kids and have to make a living or put a new deck on the back of their house (a.k.a. selling out).  About a year ago, I was flipping through Cookie Magazine and saw a little blurb about this cute little band and almost fell off of the couch.  Milkshake was Lisa Matthews and Mikel Gehl!!!!!!!  NO WONDER THEY LOOKED FAMILIAR!!!  

My old friends (that I have long since lost contact with) are now married (not to each other) and are a mommy and a daddy and write AWESOME kid's music!!!!  For those of you with young children and have seen the show, you will probably know them when you watch this video from You Tube.  Every time I hear this song now, I just have to laugh.  Someday soon I'll be taking my own kids back to Baltimore and instead of hanging out in the hip local original music scene dives, I'll be taking them to see my old friends Lisa and Mikel at the local kidfest!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Sister squabble

Squabble overheard at my house moments ago:

Shaye: ::running down the hallway screaming and throwing a fit because Naia did something first::::
Me:  Shaye, PLEASE for the LOVE OF GOD be quiet!!  You are going to wake Laela up!
Shaye:  :::screaming even louder and crying::::
Me:  :::sigh::: God dammit.

Moments later I walked into the bedroom where Shaye dramatically threw herself on the bed and told her she needed to go into Laela's room and tell her that she's sorry for waking her up.

Naia:  I go to and tell Laela sorry!
Shaye: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO NAIA!!!  You can't tell Laela you're sorry because you didn't do it!  I DID!!
Naia:  I go to.  Laela?
Shaye:  :::crying and throwing a fit:::: NO NAIA!! I'M GOING TO TELL LAELA I'M SORRY!

So, off Shaye runs into Laela's room saying, "I'm sorry for waking you up Laela.  Naia didn't do it.  I did."

Now, all 3 of them are in Laela's room laughing their heads off.

Just a day in the life of 3 children 3 and under.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Adoption in the animal world.

"For most mothers, it's just what they do. An instinct so deeply wired into them that often all they know is to love and care for life."


Thursday, August 21, 2008

What can you buy for .49 cents AND my children the future Olympians

It's amazing the things you can find in a thrift store!!!!  

Since I was close to my favorite all time thrift store today ;), I decided to just run in for 20 minutes and see what was around.  They get thousands of new items daily and I just can't resist a good bargain when I'm that close.

I bought this Three Little Pigs storyboard "puppet" set at Lakeshore Learning and we've never really used it because I didn't buy (or make) the board/glove that you use with them.  Today I found this for FORTY NINE CENTS and can't stand how perfect it is!  Much better than the board or glove.

Thrift find - felt board book
Thrift find - felt board book
Thrift find - felt board book
Thrift find - felt board book

I made a bundle of sticks and hay and used legos for bricks and VOILA! How cool is this? The girls are going to love helping act out the story. Have any of you read "The three little wolves and the big bad pig?" Oh, I highly recommend it.

I put these little props together for the book (see notes)

Caroline and I were laughing so hard last night. The Olympics have sucked our kids in. I love sports (mostly snowboarding and motocross) and we have been watching the Olympics faithfully every night. The kids get a kick out of the gymnastics and diving the most.

Michael Phelps, watch out!

Michael Phelps watch out!
My kids are in SUCH Olympic mode right now
I am so buying Naia a BMX bike and taking her to the BMX track by our house. She kept saying "watch more bikes, Mommy!" and "I do that!" last night when I was watching a DVR'd Olympic BMX semi-finals. She was *INTO* it (and that is an understatement). Here she is on the "BMX bed track". Then she crashes and says "I'm ok". God, she's a funny kid. Note the last picture of the crashed bike on the TV. She even re-enacted the crash! LOL!

Naia watching Olympic BMX semi-finals and acting out the race
Taking a spill on the "BMX bed track"
Taking a spill on the "BMX bed track"
Don't worry mom...I'm good.  I'm ok.  Really.
See...I'm ok.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Real Estate

Before becoming a mommy, I took the CA Real Estate exam and passed.  I interviewed my first broker (Prudential) on 12/27/04 knowing that I would not work for this company (it was a starting point to hone my skills).  On 12/28/04, my little Shaye was placed in my arms, and on 12/29/04 the broker called and asked what I thought and if I wanted to work with her company.  I declined saying that I had just become a mommy "last night" and it was really funny to hear her reaction (I didn't LOOK pregnant ;) Heh.)   But from that day on I have never put my license to work.  

However, with the horrible real estate market these days, I have mentioned to Caroline (in brief passing in the hallway - LOL!) that we should purchase a investment or two so that in 12 years we will have a little nest egg in equity that might help pay for some steep college tuition for 3 children.  
I have two very good friends that are real estate agents and I think I might start talking to them about my little pipe dream.  I'm not sure that I would activate my license quite yet, but I need to do some research.  A friend is buying a new construction home in a new development that has a very appealing price tag, so Caroline and I need to do some thinking and research about this.  We already know that we could rent to family members so that we wouldn't have to worry about delinquent payments, so it just seems like the perfect time to buy that rental home.

I just heard that the San Francisco market is down 29% (TWENTY NINE PERCENT!) over the last year with median house price going from something like $615K to $435K.  Can you believe that?  $435K for a home in the SF area?  Yeah, now is the time to buy those rentals!!!!!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


I swear I sometimes feel like a jack of all trades-master of none!  Our garbage disposal hasn't been working for a few days (just gives us a dull hum when we hit the button) and I keep forgetting to call the home warranty people about it.  Today it was so stinky that I had to call.  

Home warranty guy:  Did you hit the red reset button?
Me:  Huh?  What reset button?  
Home warranty guy:  There's a red reset button on the bottom.  Try pushing it.
Me:  Oh, ok.  I never knew a garbage disposal had a reset button.  Hang on.

I hit the red reset button and now nothing at all happens.  No hum.  Nada.  

Me:  Crap.  (then I get back on the phone)
Me:  Nope.  Didn't work.  Now there's not even a hum.
Home warranty guy:  Ok, the plumber will call you within 24 hours and come fix it.  That'll be $50.
Me: Ok (thinking "oh crap, FIFTY bucks (!), but better than $100 for a new one plus another $100 for somebody to install it)

I decided to Google "garbage disposal reset button" and found this site:

I fixed the problem with a simple twist of an allen wrench.  My, my...what shall I accomplish next?  Maybe I'll tackle installing a new ceiling fan.  ;)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

She's ours!

Adoption day - 

Our beautiful Laela
Heart xoxo

Shaye twirling with a pinecone in front of the courthouse
Twirling in front of the courthouse (with a pine cone)

Sweet Naia
Opera singer?

They remind me of little ducklings
They remind me of little ducklings

Goofin' with Uncle Hector
Shaye and Uncle Hector make kissy faces for the camera

Naia having a sweet moment with her Uncle on the courthouse lawn:
Naia and Uncle Hector

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Witnessing a birth of the human kind

Our friends Susan and Aaron brought their daughter (Shaye's BFF) over tonight around 7:30pm because Susan said (as relayed by Caroline and Aaron), "I'm not feeling so well and we want to go to the hospital to have everything checked out."  Ok, I had NO idea her contractions were now coming every three minutes!  About an hour later, Aaron called and said that they had just checked her and she entered the hospital at 9 cm dilated!  He said, "If you still want to see the birth.....HURRY!"  We live less than a mile from the hospital, so I made it there before they broke her water (I will never forget that sound - ACK!  It kinda creeped me out).  I decided to forego the Sbux non-fat peppermint mocha that I was desperately craving to make sure I got there in time. ;)  Turns out, I could have stopped.

I got there, sat down quietly, and she was in a lot of pain, but she was still able to talk and actually seemed to be fine between contractions.  By 8:30 this all changed.  She was laboring hard and started to push.  And push.  And push.  She kept saying, "I can not do this anymore, GET THE SUCTION" and the doctor said that the baby wasn't far enough down yet.  She labored naturally and the anesthesiologist came in at one point and offered a saddleblock to which the nurse said, "Let me see how she's progressing with this next contraction."  I loved her demeanor because it was as if to say, "Go away...Mama's fine and can do this without you."  I actually got a little irritated with the doctor and his "well, you didn't opt for an epidural" comment at one point.  How RUDE!   I think after about 20 pushes, little baby Maggie (Margaret Jean) entered the world at 9:10 pm weighing 8 lbs. 8 oz. with apgars of 8 and 9 (not sure about her length).  The cord was wrapped around her neck 3 times which is apparently why Susan had a hard time getting her out.  Not to mention her head was a little large.  Mama and baby are doing fine and Maggie latched on and was nursing quite well when I left the hospital around 10:15pm.

As for my spectating experience, I won't lie - I cried.  I'm not sure why I cried exactly, but I think I was crying more for Susan than anything.  She was screaming in agony and I could feel myself holding my own breath and clutching the arms of the rocking chair I was sitting in.  It was a little scary to see somebody in such pain.   At the same time, I also felt extremely privileged that I could be standing in that room witnessing a human being brought into this world and taking her first breath.  I am very grateful to have been able to have this experience since I have never even seen the birth of my own children.  I am truly, truly thankful and honored that she allowed me to be there.

Those last 7 or 8 pushes were brutal.  I was standing right over the nurse's shoulders at one point watching it all unfold and she said, "Look closely right there.  Do you see it?  That's the top of her head." and I could see a little sliver about the size of a pinky.  She joked and said, "This baby doesn't appear to have one hair on her head" and we all laughed because Drew was bald until she was about 18 months old!  That gave Susan the energy to seriously push that little baby out.  With a few more pushes you could see the entire top of her head and I was honestly a little horrified at how everything looked, but caught myself gasping and saying, "OH MY GOD SUSAN THERE IS HER HEAD!"  It was AMAZING.  Truly amazing.  I never knew what a beautiful shade of blue an umbilical cord is.  I always thought they were just kinda red and grayish.  But it's this beautiful sky blue color.  It's indescribable, actually.  I think you just have to see it to believe it.  I was too busy taking pictures of the baby when the placenta was delivered, so I was PISSED that I missed that part.  I asked to see it and Susan's mom somewhat freaked out about it and kept saying "how gross" it is.  I was somewhat shocked by that comment, but just ignored her and the nurse started to jiggle the little bag that was hanging below the bed to catch all the, ahem, "stuff" that came out during delivery.  One of the other nurses jumped in and said, "Oh, I'll pull it out for her" and she literally dug it out from the bag and explained to me what all the sides were and what-not.   I think I just said, "Wow, that's really amazing and beautiful" while standing there with my mouth open and Susan's mom still kept going on and on about "how anybody thinks it's beautiful is a little weird."  Umm...hello...I'm standing right here.  I hear you, lady.   It was cool, no doubt.  Bloody and strange, but that is the little sac that the baby was in and nourished by for 9 months!!  

Honestly, a little part of me was sad because the placenta was just laying in this medical waste biohazard bag.  I felt like it should have at least been in its own separate little pan or something.  If it were my own placenta, I think I would be one of those "weirdo's" who would request to take it home with me.   What the hell I would do with it, I don't know.  But it just felt so weird seeing it laying there all mixed in with papers, latex gloves, and poop.  I have read about Lotus birth and I'm not sure I would want the placenta hanging out with us for 3 or 4 days, but watching them clamp the cord and cut it immediately just made me feel so sad.  The baby was whisked away behind a curtain to be cleaned instead of immediately given to Susan and that irritated me a little.  Why can't Mama see the baby being cleaned?  It was all just very strange how it was handled.  After about 7 or 8 minutes, they had the baby cleaned, wrapped, diapered, and topped off with the standard blue/pink hat and handed her over to mama.  I helped the baby get UNwrapped so they could have skin to skin contact and she could nurse.  Susan looked so helpless like, "I don't know what to do" and the baby was fussing a little looking for her nipple.  I just wanted to jump in and say, " it like this!" but I didn't want to intrude.  By this time a few more visitors had arrived and I just sat back down quietly observing everything.  I did mention how I nursed Naia for 6 months with a Lact-Aid and told Susan that if she needed to borrow it I'd be more than happy to lend it to her.  I'm all for bottles and have spent many hours arguing with lactivists about the subject, but I hope she just doesn't give up.  She said she had a low milk supply with Drew and the hospital kept giving Drew bottles and a paci (which is why she changed hospitals with this birth), so I reminded her that the baby needs to NURSE in order for her milk supply to meet demand.  So many mom's don't get that and just give up so easily.  

There were so many things about the birth that seemed so sterile to me.  Had it been me, I would have changed many things.   For starters, if I ever give birth I think having a water birth would be really cool.  Another weird thing is that the nurse came in and said, "We're going to take her for a little bit and give her her first bath, etc."  I'm sure they'll do the heel stick and do all the post delivery blood tests.  But a bath??? WHAT?  I am just shocked that Susan didn't say, "The hell you are taking her for a bath!"  I mean, shouldn't Mama just be allowed to bond with her child?  I think the bath can wait - like until they are all home and the PARENTS can do that!  So bizarre.  Again, if it was my birth, my child wouldn't leave my sight for anything.  ANYTHING!

I said that this experience would either make me want to put my 7 embryo's into my uterus or it would make me want to donate them to science.  I'm still undecided about it.  The labor part was not appealing to me.  Not at all.  I didn't find myself wanting to be in her shoes.  Seeing the baby for the first time was magical, but watching her scream in agony immediately made me think "surrogate"!!  People say, "You forget the pain" or "Childbirth is beautiful".  Yeah, well, that part is not pretty and I certainly don't long to do it.  I laughed a little to myself because, to me, seeing the top of Maggie's head brought back memories of the first time I laid eyes on my own children:  Shaye was brought to us by two social workers, laid on our coffee table in the car seat, and when the little blanket was pulled back I got my first glimpse of her.  That rush of seeing my first child for the first time was mind blowing.  Naia was in the ICU unit on a respirator and we walked in and got our first glimpse of her little, tiny body in this big, huge bed.  I cried for her helpless little self and I knew at that point she was meant to be my daughter.   I'll never forget the day we walked into the nursery to meet Laela for the first time.   I saw a few babies and those couple of seconds that it took to find her felt miserably like hours.  But when they pointed to her and said "here she is" I was overwhelmed with emotions.   Seeing *MY* babies for the first time will never compare to watching another woman give birth.  But it was really cool.  I think I have the "been there done that" attitude now. My curiosity has been satiated and I can honestly say that I do not have the desire to go through with what I just witnessed.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

On being a mother..

It's been amazing to watch our Mama cat have kittens and then take care of them so instinctively.  At the first sign of distress, she jumps into her little birthing box to take count of her kittens and make sure that they are all ok.  Usually, she just plops down for them to nurse because they are screaming for milk.  It is so wild to watch that motherly instinct take over.   She just rolls over, like, "have at it kids".   She really has this joyful aura about her.  She rarely leaves the box, but more and more she's been venturing out into the house to just lay around on the tile.   How am I ever going to find new homes for them?  I honestly want to keep them all.  I wonder, do we keep the first born?  He's the most mellow little guy (I've been calling him Biggie Smalls because he's the biggest of the litter).  Do I keep little "Stucky"?  Afterall, I pulled him from the clutches of death and I feel like I have a bond with this little fella.  Then there are the beautiful tiger striped kittens.  They are just so beautiful and different looking from Yoshi.  One is the runt of the litter and the other, in my opinion, is the most beautiful.  So, do we keep the runt?  Or the cutest one?  ugghh....I hate this.  Earlier, I pulled all the kittens out one by one to weigh them and Yoshi was meowing at me and really showing signs of a worried mommy and it was just so amazing.  I would put the babies right back onto her to show her that they were ok and she'd relax, lick them, bop them around a little bit, and then pull them into her.  Really and truly just an amazing thing to watch.  However, in the middle of the night she decided to move them under our bed.  ACK!

Being a protective, joyful mother - a perfect segue into the adoption of our little Laela Jade Christine.  It was *SO* incredibly uneventful.   It wasn't even a real judge!  It was a subordinate judge that was given power this week because the "real" judge was on vacation or something.  It was pretty funny.  He asked everybody to introduce themselves (Grandpa, Grandma, Elba, Hector, Shaye, and Naia).  Caroline and I never did sit down.  In fact, we just sauntered up to the bench and signed all the court docs right there on his "desk" (his bench? You know, the place where the judge sits.)  Then he said something like, "I now declare that Laela Jade Christine is yours forever from this day forth just as if she were born to you" or something like that.  It almost felt like we got married!!  It was awesome to hear those words and have it be all legal and official.  I didn't cry (ok, a teeny little tear formed in my eye), but I was so over the moon happy to have this behind us.  She is ours forever, but she has been ours since she was a 6 week old fetus growing in Lisa's belly and we found out about her.  My little Baby January is now home safely FOREVER with her Mama and Mommy and two loving sisters.  Those months of not knowing what would happen to her wondering if birthdad would fight us for her after having her in our home for months were terrifying.  But tonight, I can go to sleep looking at my little love knowing that she is *MY* daughter and nobody will ever be able to take that away from me.  

And Caroline and I are celebrating tonight with our $110 bottle of Silver Oak wine (which is very yummy, but I'm just as happy with the $12 bottle of Jacob's Creek).  We are so thankful and lucky to have these children.  I can't imagine ever becoming a mom any other way.  Thank you 4 years of unsuccessful IVF and to the universe for guiding us to our children.  Thank you Sacramento County foster/adoptions for making my deepest wishes come true!

If my camera will cooperate, I'll post some pics later.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Such a good new Mama

My little Yoshi and her new babies.

A new day has come....

I am no longer just a mom to one child, so I've moved my TwoMomsForShaye over to this new site (thanks to Sara). Cleaner appearance and much more user friendly, too!!! Hello little Blogger. :)