Praying for Ansley

Sunday, November 25, 2007

A Charlie Brown Tree...

"Christmas time is here. Happiness and cheer. Fun for all that children call, the greatest time of year. Snowflakes in the air. Carols everywhere. Olden times and ancient rhymes, Of love and dreams to share. Sleigh bells in the air. Beauty everywhere. Yuletide by the fireside, And joyful memories there. Christmas time is here. We'll be drawing near. Oh, that we could always see, Such spirit through the year. Oh, that we could always see, Such spirit through the year." I love a Charlie Brown Christmas - classic! What I love more is that I just spent $40 on a Christmas tree for my sitting room (I like our real trees the best, but we don't have it yet, and it we aren't sitting in the living room, then you can't see it!) So, I decided to buy a small, 4.5 foot tree for my sitting room, and I just put it together. It's prelit, and i haven't fluffed the branches yet really to make it look like a real tree, so in the meantime, it is a true Charlie Brown tree. Ornaments might help. :)

I have most of the Christmas stuff out now. I haven't placed it in the right places yet, but it is out of the boxes and ready to be 'put'. We are going to get our real tree next Sunday - I can be obsessive about it, so it takes a while to get all the lights on, especially!

Our neighborhood already has a lot of outside lights up and lit. There is one of 'those' houses in the neighborhood... with SO many lights, it could light a small town. (no kidding.) the lights and decorations are set to music on the radio when you are near their house, so you can listent to Christmas songs and watch the lights 'blink' in unison. I took some cell phone video.... i just have to figure out how to download it and then post it. It's too classic!

Well, another week at work. I don't want to go - this weekend went way too fast!

I should hear about the interviews I had last week, hopefully tomorrow. Of course, I guess I'm only hopeful if I GET the job... not so much otherwise! I do want to know what I'm dealing with though (job or no job...) so I'd just as soon hear so I know the 'deal'!

I hope everyone has an awesome week. I hope to hear something from the adoption agency this week... but I think it's too soon and I probably won't... wait, wait, and wait some more! :P

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thanksgiving Day

What a difference a week makes! Today was a great Thursday - time spent with family and counting my many blessings. Not having the baby girl in Kazakhstan yet here in Virginia with us just gives us time to be patient and anticipate the joy she will bring to our family with her when she arrives! Spending the day with Matthew, my parents and my brother, what a great day! We missed my sister and her family, but did get to talk to them and know all is well. I missed extended family that we've been able to celebrate with in years past, but am grateful for the wonderful memories all those Thanksgiving conjure up!! I am grateful that we had enough food on our table to feed 20, not just the 5 of us eating the dinner. I am grateful to have such great friends - some near, some far - so new, some long-time friends I've known for 25 years! (Am I old enough for that??) - some from work, some from church, some from elementary school, some from high school, some from the blogging family - you all bring so much to my life and I am so thankful for each and every one of you. I am so certain I could sit here and list out many many more things for which I am grateful, but I will spare you all. (Besides, I need to get to bed - can you believe, I have to work tomorrow??) Anyway, I know we all have things for which to be thankful!! What a great day to reflect on these blessings in our lives. :)

Lastly, I just want to send our thoughts and prayers out to those IN Kazakhstan now as I type. Going through their bonding periods, waiting for court (or in court NOW!), waiting for the day they are allowed to come home with their precious babies. It has to be difficult to be away from family on a holiday, but knowing they are with their beautiful babies must more than make up for that. If you want to follow their stories, their links are on the left side of this blog.

Have a great week everyone! Someone suggest some good poll ideas... I am trying to think of what the next should be!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

The Day After

I have a second job interview on Monday morning for a company I interviewed with this past Tuesday. But then at 4:30 on my way home from work, I got a call and got ANOTHER second interview with the OTHER company I interviewed with this week (on Wednesday). I've been trying to get a job for six months and never even got a second interview, and now two interviews, out of the blue, that both resulted in second interviews!! WOW! Who would have thought! Now... to get through the interviews and get an offer!!

You know, I was hoping to have the rest of the year off, to decompress.... If I'm lucky enough to get an offer, or dare I say two?? I wonder if I'll have to start in December or if I can begin Jan. 2?? I would really like some time off! :)

OK, getting a little carried away. Isn't it funny how fast things turn around though?? Yesterday, no job offers to get me out of the mortgage business, today, two second interviews for next week. It's a holiday week... aren't people on vacation? :) I'm glad they're not..... :)

The other thing I want to post is that last night, Matthew and I were watching TV and I was laughing and laughing and laughing (as was he, but he always does). I hadn't realized HOW long it had been since I really laughed, even when we would watch something funny... but as I was, it dawned on me and I was sad that I have let my current job effect me, especially at home, for as long as I did! The COOL part was that Matthew, saw me laughing, and came over, and gave me a hug and said, "You're happy and laughing! I like it!" It had been way too long since I decided to let work roll off my back! I can relax and be happy again, especially at home with Matthew who deserves my best! My job never used to effect me this way, but the last 'while' (maybe even a couple of years!) has really been bad, and getting worse, so unfortunately, it did effect me in ways I didn't ever want it to! It's in the past now! Time to move on. Praise the Lord! :)

I am cold in my house, and Matthew is camping tonight. I think he's nuts, but I hope he's having fun. He enjoys it, and this camping trip is local, so he's only about 5 miles from home, or so. It seems like they are in the middle of nowhere, but they are actually right next to a major highway, or maybe two! I think that's funny.

Is everyone voting for your favorite food? Inquiring minds (mine!) want to know!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Not a great day

I went back to the dermatologist today to have a 'thing' checked on my back. Well, she couldn't rule out skin cancer, so she did a biopsy. Now, it should be no big deal she said, even if it is cancer... but come on!! A bad day at work and a cancer biopsy in the same day... It's a day to remember (or forget?!!!) that's for sure!

I'm getting excited now about the holidays. Yeah!! I will be having family here this year since we weren't sure where we'd be, or whether I'd be traveling or not (in Kazakhstan.) Of course, i'm not in Kazakhstan (Check out their weather by the way - yikes!) So, it will be me and Matthew, my brother and my parents. Quiet, and different than we are accustomed to. I wish we could have more family come, or that we could go somewhere...

Like I said, it'll be quiet - but for this year... that's ok. We will miss my sister and her whole family who are staying in SC to celebrate. (She's due with her baby in 6 weeks... so she needs to stay put!) Also, my mom's brother and sister-in-law were hoping we could all travel there this year (to TN) but it just didn't work. My grandma will be visiting them however. I'm hoping next year we can all get together!! With my new addition from Kaz, and my sisters newest addition in the new year, and my cousin who is also expecting a little one... we could have quite a new generation to start a NEW 'kids' table and I might actually get to sit with the adults...

I'm going to try to set up a new poll, for fun... Tell me what you favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal is. (Hey! I'm unemployed... cut me some slack!) :)

Friday, November 9, 2007

Fri-dee nite

I love Friday nights! They are always good... this one is especially good. This week was SO bad, (at work), that makes nights at home, especially Friday night at home, all the better! Yeah!

I am enjoying the comments you all are leaving! Thanks. :)

My mom are dad are coming to visit tomorrow. my brother will come for the day as well. We will celebrate his birthday, which was last week. I still need to make the cake... my mom is bringing the cake pans. I only have 13X9 pans, and he likes the round, double decker cakes... so I have to borrow the pans. It may still be warm when we're eating it, but that's OK. :) He will go home tomorrow night, but my parents will stay until Monday a.m. They'll be back again next Saturday and stay through Thanksgiving weekend. I'm hoping to take some time off while they are here. We'll see how that works out!!

I only put up a few more decorations tonight for Christmas. They were all in the one box that I brought up last night, I just didn't finish it all last night. Now I can take that one down tomorrow and bring up the next one. :) I have a LOT of Christmas decorations... it takes a LOT of time to put them ALL up.

Well, no more news on the adoption today, or this week. I guess I'm not expecting to hear anything for a while, unless they have an updated time frame at this point. I'm excited to continue hearing the stories of those who are there now, and J and M leave next week. Yahoo!!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

The day that wouldn't end

OK - I'm in my happy place... sitting down to read the blogs about people who have either been to Kazakhstan to meet and bring home their child, or those that are currently there, having the time of their lives with the children they just met! It is SO exciting to read these wonderful stories! And the updates from home are just incredible! Anyway, I love reading all these great stories.

It is so great to be at home with Matthew. Work stinks and some days are just excrutiating. Today was one of those days. Although unfortunately I can't shake my 'mood' when I get home, at least not completely, inside I'm so happy to be home for the night and with my boy. Let me just say... the mortgage business is no place for the faint of heart! I look forward to the day I can move to the next stage of that part of my life. In the meantime, I am trying hard to focus on fun things with Matthew, getting ready for Christmas, which I will almost certainly be home for at this point!!, and preparing for a brand new baby girl!!

Sorry to be so contemplative, it was just one of those days!

Matthew really ended the quarter on a high note! He got a 98 on his GT History project, and 98 on his spanish Day of the Muerta project (a project on my 107 year old great-grandmother!) and a 95 on a math test! Bam! Unfortunately, the quarter started 'slow' so the average is just that... This quarter SHOULD go much better... Let's pray!

Ok, so my village is up, and now my nativity scene is up along with a few knick-knacks. Yeah yeah, I know it is early, but it makes me relax and happy to focus on other stuff when I'm at home. Come Dec., I'll be ready to ENJOY the decorations rather than just dragging them all out of the closet. :) Baby steps... and it'll be a winter wonderland before you know it! (It already feels like one outside!!)

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Hump day news

Well, today brought a little bit of news, one shot, some stress at work, and one funny Matthew story.

The little bit of news. The adoption agency got word about a few things. 1. Choosing 'girl' has turned out to be no big deal, with no roadblocks at this junture. (This is what I believed in my heart all along, that it would be no big deal.) 2. The first email update said I would even need to do more paperwork for a girl, but until one is identified for me, they weren't going to tell me what. Upon further questioning, it turns out they actually are not going to require any further paperwork. 3. My paperwork will remain in the region in which it has already been sent. This 'change' hasn't changed that at all. So, unless something changes in the future, Petropavlovsk, here I come! I always said I would be going to the coldest region during the coldest part of the year. For those of you who know me, this is God's idea of a practical joke. 4. The timeline is looking like Jan./Feb. at this point, but as we know, that is a moving target! (IN two days last week, it was Dec., then it was Jan./Feb., then it was end of Nov.... ) So, I take it as a loose guideline at this point. I'm ready if they call tomorrow. I'm also ready to wait!! Whatever! I am so glad that the 'threats' or should i say warnings about choosing girl over boy/either regaring delays, extra paperwork, possible dealings with people acting 'Eastern European' etc, have fallen apart, at least so far!! yeah!! Let's keep up with this trend, and let's shorten the time line a little. I'll be ready to leave Dec. 26th. :)

I went for part two of my Hepatitis B shot today. It hurt only slightly. The real pain was paying for the shot. That seems like cruel and unusual punishment. I have to PAY to be pricked with a needle and inserted with a disease, and then I have to fork over money! Doesn't seem right to me. :)

Stress at work - what else need I say?

Matthew's story. One of his teachers relayed this via email to me today. Last Friday, before a 4 day weekend for Matthew, she assigned an assignment that was partially due today (after the long weekend) and the rest due this Friday. Matthew does not like homework. He really doesn't like weekend homework. So when she assigned it, she said, Matthew was not very happy about his Friday assignment. In fact, she went on to say that he gave her a BILL for $11,000 for her to pay in order for him to do it. (**Oh yes he did!) She told him that he could bill her, but that she couldn't pay it. She said he would get paid in the future when his schooling paid off and he gets his first paycheck at his first job. She ended by saying that Matthew is a character. A character indeed!

I guess him billing her for the homework is like my thought about trying to be PAID to get a shot. I guess like mother, like son.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Another day of 'updates'

Well, today I called the adoption agency, as I said on Saturday I would be doing. I did make up my mind (let's hope I 'read' God's mind right too!! LOL.) Anyway, I called to tell them I have decided girl! Since i had to decide one or the other, I have decided that is my wish. I still wish I didn't have to PICK, but since I did.... then... I did! (Of course I'll still say if either meant 50/50 that would be fine, but it doesn't mean that anymore.) Anyway, let's not go THERE again...

I'm not real sure how well that went over when I told them. I mean, the agency doesn't care, but now they are worried that in some Eastern European places may think I don't have a 'good reason' for changing my mind. (Remember, I chose either, they are the ones that said either is boy only.) So, I may be in for some paperwork, which I knew. It may take longer, which I knew... so I'll give them what they want and hope they don't throw any other curve balls along the way. I won't like curve balls. (Like if they decide to be all Eastern European and just say, too bad, you said either first, now you get a boy.)

What I don't like is that it makes it sound like I don't like boys. I love boys! But when pushed to make a choice, I have a boy and would love a girl.

The extra waiting is really a blessing right now, actually. Matthew needs the extra time with me right now, so I am thrilled about that part, quite honestly. I'll be home for the holidays, another big bonus. It'll give me more time to save money... now if only I would actually DO that! There are really many pros and I can't think of many cons... I mean, waiting, but in the long run, what difference does that really make? I mean, Matthew will still be in College when this baby starts kindergarten. Does a couple extra months REALLY matter? I think not... And I think it will be a blessing to Matthew who is still adjusting to Junior High.

So, don't forget to vote. I'll leave both boys and girls names up there, since this could get all Eastern European - and I just like to see what others are picking. I only wish I knew who was voting for what. So far no one name has more than one vote... LOL.

Thanks for all your support. I appreciate the prayers too! For all you praying people, KEEP 'EM COMING! For those of you that don't... start praying! Pray for the process to go quickly (relative) and smoothly and that they'll accept my request for a baby girl. Thanks!

On a sad note... my friend Julie has been visiting her father (for over a month). He was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year. She had some great time with him this last month, is even grateful she got laid off from our company at the end of Sept. so that she had this time to spend with him!! (There is a silver lining in every dark cloud, that is for sure!!) However, he lost his battle with cancer yesterday. He is now out of pain and no longer suffering! However, the family is left to cope with his passing and prepare for the funeral - please keep them in your prayers as well. Thank you.

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Colts lost. Darn it!

Patriots vs. Colts

Go Peyton Go!! Matthew and I are routing for the Colts... BIG TIME! These teams are both undefeated and we think the Pats are overrated, espeically Tom Brady. Someone has to win today... we're hoping it's the Colts! The Ravens don't play until Monday night this week... we play the Steelers... I don't have a great feeling about that one, but if we can beat them, then YEAH!

Matthew and I have had a great day. He is leaving in a bit to go to Pat's for the night. Tomorrow is a teacher work day (so is Tuesday.) He is spending the night tonight and spending the day with Stephanie and Evan tomorrow. Pat will bring him home tomorrow night, right before the Ravens game.

Daylight savings time ended today. It's getting dark, and it's just 5 p.m. Sad face.... But it wasn't dark when I woke up this morning, smiley face! it's been really hard to get out of bed recently because it's still dark when we LEAVE to take him to school!

OK - I'm not the only one, because I've read other about others already doing this too, AND I have an excuse.... but we decorated a little for Christmas this weekend. I KNOW WHAT YOU'RE thinking, and yes, I'm nuts... BUT all we did was the village, which isn't necessarily CHRISTMAS and that alone takes so long that if I don't get it up... it consumes a whole day later to get it out, set it up, clean up all the boxes, etc., so then I'd be ready to get 'more' out when it's actually time to decorate and all I'd get done is the village. Also, there is the possibility that I won't be around at Christmas, and I just can't miss that whole season... So I started early, just in case. So there, those are my excuses and I'm sticking to them!! It looks good - so far, no blown fuses!

Don't forget to vote for baby names!! I like seeing the votes! :)

50 days until Christmas. Have you done any Christmas shopping yet? (Or worse yet... any Christmas decorating?) I wish I could have a countdown to travel... unfortunately, that's an unknown... Ugh!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Update for Saturday

Hi everyone - welcome to my page! I just sent out an email letting more and more people know the address of this now that I know more what I'm doing!

I also just wanted to say, I know I went on and on below... about the gender topic. It was really my forum to chat about it because there is no one person to go to and I needed to talk! Anyway, I am feeling really great now about what I have decided at the moment, so come Monday, I'll make it official I think! For now, go ahead and vote on my baby poll names... I don't know if I set them up right, but I tried! :) Please vote and feel free to leave suggestions. Just don't be offended if I don't use your name choice. :)

I hope to talk to each of you soon! Keep in touch! Thanks for checking this out!

Windy Day!

Well, Hurricane Noel is making an appearance here... at least a little bit. We have the wind affecting us and it is making it COLD today! I had to turn the heat up a good bit!

Matthew went to a scouting event this morning, and after I dropped him off, I went looking for baby furniture. I found something I really like, but of course, it turns out to be one of the most expensive! I wouldn't have it any other way! No, but really... it isn't the cheapest furniture but it is good quality and will last and last. I think I am going to go ahead with it, but don't need to rush at the moment - it is in stock. Gotta love 'in stock'. I want to paint the nursery first so the furniture isn't in the way, but need to get a move on then!

I did hear from the adoption agency a few times this week. There was slightly downer news when they said the new time line is now more like Jan./Feb. (not Dec.) and that was for a boy. If I wanted a girl... it would be even longer. (I had put 'either' on my original application but later said I 'preferred' a girl.) I had to make a decision about the sex. Basically, I can 'choose' a girl, or I can stick with 'either' and I'll have a boy, so either way, I'm reallyhaving to now choose the sex of my baby. I didn't want to. I wanted it to be either and no decision, but like I said, I've basically been told choosing 'either' at this point will mean a boy.

SO, after thinking about that for a day, I actually had a few questions for the adoption agency, so we chatted for a while on the phone yesterday after trading emails back and forth this week. She really helped me get a grip on some things and it made me feel better to have spoken to someone about my questions. Then I had to get back to work. I went in to a big meeting, while I was in that, my cell phone rang... It was my adoption agency again! That's odd. We haven't spoken in months and I just got off the phone with them. What in the world could possibly be new already? I had to call back after the meeting and there was news!

My dossier had actually moved from the Ministry of Foreign Affiars to the Ministry of Education (which wasn't known in the earlier phone call that day). AND it had moved from MOE to a region!! Good grief! 1.5 hours before it was still in the MFA, but obvioulsy not! Now, I could hear something by the end of November!!

Anyway - the big thing now is that the gender is an 'issue'. Basically, again I was told I have to say one or the other. "Either" is fine, but it will mean boy is what I'm being told. So. although I do not want to 'decide', either way I am deciding. Does that make sense? I always wanted 4 boys. Never girls. However, from the start of this adoption, I have believed this would be a girl. I am so sure of that now, that although I don't want to say I want a girl (or read differently, I don't want a boy), that is what I think I have to say! I don't know why I have such a hard time with this, but I am. Anyway, it does mean that it will most likely take longer. It may NOT be the end of Nov. now since I am going to tell the agency on Monday that I want a girl for sure. (They said I'll have to re-do a few forms now!) Anyway, I don't want to decide the wrong thing because I have to redo a form, and I feel as though either way I am deciding what I'm getting. Yes, girl. Either, boy. So, I think I'll stick with my gut and go with the girl. It's a hard decision for some reason, and I'm going to think about it until Monday for sure, but then I'll let them know and start re-doing what I need to then. (Unless i change my mind tomorrow and go with the 'either'.)

I mean, the one truth there is of course, either means either, so it could still be a girl... but I've been told that is very unlikely if it remains either. I don't want to play God and pick the sex of my baby, but I think I have no choice now. I don't know.

Anyway, that's where we are. Deciding about gender. Picking furniture. (I was waiting until I knew the gender and would have gotten white for a girl and oak for a boy and now I've done a 180 and I think I'm going dark wood (like cherry) and it'll be good for either. Man, I'm waffling on everything! :)

I still hope to travel soon, and at the same time, I was SO relieved when I was told I'd be here through the holidays. I don't want to leave my baby (Matthew!) at Christmas! At the same time, I'm just so anxious to meet the 'new' baby that hearing it'll be after Christmas is hard too. I'm ready... NOW!

So, pray for me and the 'gender' thing... although now I'm pretty sure I'm going with the girl. (Of course, 22 hours ago, I was pretty sure I was going with 'either' and pretty much that meant the boy...) LOL. Give me 24 hours and let's see where I stand then.

Pray for Theresa who took off today with her Mom for Kazakhstan to meet her baby boy!! I can't wait to read all about their adventures. Pray for the Morgan's who are with their beauty Roxana right now and approaching the end of their bonding period. Pray for Jen and Marshall who are waiting for their LOI so they can go meet their precious little girl!!

I can't wait to see what Monday and next week brings. Things are definitely moving along - even if I don't know 'where' next! :)