Thursday, July 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Jada!

One year ago tonight. . .my baby girl was born and I didn't even know about it. We didn't find out until the next afternoon that we were chosen to be her parents and that she would be coming home the very next day. It's a good thing they called us when they did--as we were on our way out of town for my 20 year class reunion. Nope--we didn't make it and I certainly have no regrets. There are sacrifices you make just to be a parent and that had to be one of them.

Jada's birthmom is amazing. I cannot even imagine how this whole first year has been for her. We went from the concept of her adoption being closed, to emailing, to visits, to building a very wonderful, beautiful and trusting relationship (at least I hope she feels that way.) We were even blessed with an unexpected meeting with Jada's birth grandmother when they stopped by on the way to the airport to drop off some gifts for Jada. It is amazing how things evolve and turn out the way they do. I cannot imagine our life without Jada. I cannot imagine our life without Carmen.

Jada giving the thumbs up on her fancy pants robe. I think she has expensive taste already! :0)

This is a very very special plaque that hung on Carmen's wall when she was growing up. I cannot think of a more endearing gift from the heart. Jada loves to carry it around, but she is not very gentle with it--so it sitting on her dresser waiting to be hung on her wall.

This year has gone by far too fast and yet I am so excited for the things to come. We have a tradition to take a photo at the time of baby's birth. Jakob was born at 10:08pm so he has been easy so far since he is sleeping (I'm sure that will change in the coming years!). Jada, however, seriously, would not hold still for a second--so all the actual 7:29pm pictures are blurry. If that is any indication of Carmen's labor and birth with Jada, I know she is even more amazing than I thought! haha! If that is any indication of what she is going to be like in the future. . . we may be in trouble! :0) Here's my sweet sweet baby girl one year later after arriving in the outside world! Love you Jada!! Love you Carmen!!

Happy happy birthday! May we help all of your wishes and dreams come true!!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


Yesterday was Jakob's adoption day! 3 years ago we finalized his adoption in court and he became a "legal" forever part of our family. He was already a forever part of our family in our hearts the day we met Kaiti! Life has a funny way of reminding me that things don't always go as planned. I planned to have this blissfully peaceful happy day just hanging out with my kids -- but spent a better part of it trying to rid my house of some of the best tantrums a 3 1/2 year old could throw. We would definitely win if there was a tantrum throwing contest--I'm sure of it! Jakob did actually take a much needed nap and woke up in a much better mood--so off to the Mall of America we went!

We had 5 free ride tickets that we got at the Eagan parade on the 4th of July! Each ticket was worth 6 points and most of Jakob's rides only cost 3-4 points and as his "chaperone" we don't have to pay when we ride with him on most rides. So--we got in a lot of rides! The tickets were "mystery" tickets--meaning they could be worth more than 6 points--and with our amazing luck--the last ticket was worth a whoppin' 100 points! That's a lot of points! AND--it needed to be used up by 10:00pm that evening (it was already 7:30pm). That is totally impossible for us with two small children!

Probably the best part of the evening was walking around looking for a family to give the ticket too! And there they were--standing by the ticket kiosk--a mom, dad, and three young boys. How awesome is that? We knew they would be able to burn 97 points in a few hours! The mom was so elated that she started to cry and gave both Craig and me a big hug! I know--if they are ordinary like us, a night at Nickelodeon Universe can really break your budget. Especially with three boys! :0) So off we went for a family dinner at Burger King and home to eat cupcakes! It ended up being a wonderful evening!

I've always wanted to do the KTIS drive-thru difference. I have never been out on the days that they have them. We are also not always in a financial position to help others out as we would like to or to donate to every charity that desperately needs our help. So, I guess giving away our ride ticket was kind of our way to be able to do that. We would never be able to just hand out $100--it was so AWESOME! I am so thankful for the things we do have and for my "forever" babies who are not so much babies anymore. God is so good!

Jakob's new summer NUNU blanket that I made for him.

A moment of sibling love--it does really exist! :0)

Going on the Wonder Pets ride all by himself for the very first time!

WEEEEEEE!! I did go on this with him first and it is kind of scary! :0)

Having cupcake cones!

Jada started from the bottom! haha!

Checking out all the cars that I had when I was a kid. He is still playing with them today! Yeah!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Independence Day Weekend

It has been a busy busy time over in our little chaotic home! In two weeks time both Craig and I have managed to get really really ill. . . I was sick while hubby was out of town and had to manage the little ones by myself while feeling like death was just around the corner--but I made it through. Craig got sick the next weekend, while my parents were here visiting to celebrate Jada's birthday. So, he spent the whole weekend in bed.

And did you just catch that? Yes, Jada is almost one! I cannot believe that a whole year has already passed us by! A whole year of complete chaos in an upside down world. Every day is so amazing and completely challenging! I still haven't mastered the "keep the house clean" talent, nor the "dinner is ready" when daddy gets home. In fact, daddy usually makes the dinner. We are still working on our organization skills and learning to let go of things that are really adding to our clutter in between the temper tantrums and sibling fights over just one toy when we have zillions of others laying around.

Then, there are those moments. . .

The moments when I catch Jakob giving Jada a hug and a kiss. Where Jada takes Jakob's shoes to him and tries to put them on his feet. When Jada stops crying because Jakob sings to her. When Jada walks to her birthmom, Carmen, and gives her a big snuggle hug. How Jakob's face lights up when he sees Kaiti (his birthmom) walking to our door. Jada fast asleep on my husband's chest in the middle of the night. Ahhh. . . they make me melt. I could not ask for more!

Waiting for fireworks! We go to the Bloomington Fete fireworks on July 3rd every year!

Jada pointing at the fireworks. She did not seem to mind the boom booms in the sky and stayed awake for the whole show! :0)

We went to the city of Eagan on the 4th for their parade. Jakob wasn't too sure about the dragon!

Jada and me waiting to dance. The bands kind of scared her and so did the loud horns!

Jakob was not too sure about the clowns. . . .

Candy boy was more interested in eating all the candy being thrown at the parade. He is trying to chew a tootsie roll in this picture. I have never seen a kid eat so much candy! We finally had to cut him off--he was obsessed!

Jada waving to all the beautiful girls on the floats! Born to be a princess! :0)
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