Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Married life...Bliss...NOT ROOMATES!

So you know how our house grew from 3 kids to 5?! This summer was NUTSO!! We have a son who has not been diagnosed (correctly) yet and we are all walking on egg shells because he has gone completely off edge . Its been extremely stressful in our home to say the least bit. I wish I could say that when our children came home and completed our family that all the angels were singing a harmonious tune. It didn't happen. It's been super hard! There was always someone crying, always someone in time out or time ''in'' always someone in our space and time together as a couple whats that?! We are almost at the three month mark and things have gotten better and then worse and then so-so and then worse.
We went camping a couple weekends ago....I forgot the camera! There was a stress cloud over our family, hubbs and I were a total stress case! We both handle it differently one of us gets very grouchy, I wont say who :), and one of us has been having panic attacks, which a couple times almost landed her in the hospital :(
That was the last straw for me, something had to change in our family and STAT. The more I surrendered it to God, and prayed about it the more I felt God show me that if hubbs and I were not on solid ground as a couple then everything will fall on us, and if we are not solid on Christ as a couple then the house will collapse fast. I kept hearing "PUT YOUR HOUSE IN ORDER!"
We got back from camping emptied everything out put kids to bed and hubbs and I sat down with wine to "'chat it out''. I think he knows the ''hey...we gotta talk'' look, do you give your spouse the same look sometimes?!
I began to ask forgiveness to my hubbs for treating him like a roommate of the house. The kids became number one focus for me and one specific child took ALL my emotions and attention there was none left for my mate...at least I made it that way without even meaning to. Our conversation went well, and the next day we went to a healing room, I know sounds new agey, but the healing rooms are a ministry that allow you to come to get prayer on Tuesdays and Thursday nights in Shelton. My Bestie meet me there to watch the kiddos while they laid hands on all of us and began to pray over us and anoint us with encouraging words and we both felt completely uplifted and ready with a new goal and HOPE!
We promised each other we would be a team we would focus our energies on Christ, on each other and our family. Just in that order. We won't pass each other in the halls without making each other laugh, I will sit and watch *DUMB* shows with him instead of putting laundry away, yes I can do it in the morning! I will make sure to brush my hair and teeth before getting in bed, I will work on making our home a safe retreat, we both know because of our one child this can be impossible for this season, but we can really strive at it with all God's help. Then I began to ask the Lord what other ways I can bless my guy here are some ideas...if you have any tips, PLEASE leave a comment!

1. I will find his socks and place them in pairs instead of just put all his socks in the drawer because they drive me Koko for Cocco puffs!

2. I will sit and listen to his political views and have conversation with him about it instead of getting a haze look in my eye and pretending to loose my contact and excuse myself. (okay I only did this twice!)

3. I wont say one single thing when he leaves pots in the sink to ''soak'' them overnight.

4. I won't I repeat WONT try to throw his ugly shirts away, God knows he needs them to feel ''cozy''!

5. I will give him the chance to SLEEP IN even if I NEVER get the chance to do it, I will totally sacrifice my eyes for him.

6. I wont tease him about all the facebook games he plays or Fantasy sports (even though I explain its not a real thing :)

7. I will clean my hair off the shower walls...I know this sounds gross does anyone else do this when hair falls out from the wash you just pile it on the shower wall? Sometimes I forget to wipe it off so he comes in to a monster living on the shower wall...double gross!

The rest specials I wont share out there to the world..tehehe.
So, if you are feeling the same way with your man like you are just room mates passing by, STOP. Get your focus back in order, its hard work, but the stress levels in the house will go up and up and up until it pops and lots of hurt feelings. Together in Christ you can accomplish great things! Remember you married your best friend first, your spouse deserves much focus and consideration.

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Real Scoop on Poop





DISCLAIMER: Don't be eating a chicken nugget or sipping on juice while reading this post. You may choke or run to the toilet cause its gross!
See how excited I am to give you the scoop on poop...what you talking bout Willis?! When you adopt internationally there are a series of doctor appointments and tests you need to do. The collection of stool is one of them. I can stomach blood wonds and even open wounds and I even in my spare time have caughty myself watching open surgery just for kicks, it really intrigues me! However I have procrasted this event, becuase I can not stomach poop on older kids, as if poop with smaller kids are easier, but you know what I mean. We call it man poop in our house when there is a shift from toddler poop to preschool poop. I HATE man poop!
If you can read the above memo it is an instructional on how to collect, keep and store the S*IT, seriously. There are instructions like this ''select from the area that appear bloody, slimy or watery. Gagging yet? I sure have. The first sample, I gagged so badly that I throw up in my mouth. *I know Nasty*
So if you have to do this disgusting job of collecting poop for older kids here are some tips.
1. Wear a bandanna on your face, and if you can handle it spray the bandanna with perfume first!
2. Bring matches with you and every 10 seconds light a match....no really, I had to stop the scoop to light that bad boy to kill the smell in the room.
3. Open a window!
4. lock the door, other kids will come in to watch you do this and then they will have the need to throw up and then you will have poop and throw up to clean up....No seriously!
5. Wash your hands, even if you kids scream that the macaroni is burning down stairs in the kitchen, if you don't wash your hands you may forget and then ....well. Just wash up!
6. After you collect the refrigerated sample. And tell your child to take his or her brown paper bag in the outside fridge. Make sure to tell EVERYONE including your spouse of the surprise that lays inside otherwise they indeed will think its a treat open it up and well, it can get ugly.
There I hope this helps in your collection of poop...aren't you so glad you asked :)!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

It was one of those days.

Don't judge me. Today was one of those days that ended with me on a couch with no slip covers that had been removed to be washed because of an accident...and not from me, with two laundry baskets laying on the floor with just laundered clothes ready to be folded laying on the carpet that was soiled (with a body fluid) and two egg yolks from some clowns in my house that thought it would be fun to juggle some eggs (NOT BOILED)
And that's not even the whole enchilada my day went a little like this. Wake up, all kids still in their own bed..YES time for some devotions, the sun shinning through the windows, a promise of new day and new mercies for everyone. First little one marches down the stairs half asleep cleaning off his eyes then another then another then another then another. Its okay, I can do this day, I just had my coffee it's going to be good. Today I will be super mom by the way. I was going to make a scrumptious breakfast with WHOLE wheat toast and I would sit today and eat breakfast at the counter instead of drinking my second cup of coffee and drink while I cleaned around breakfast.
Then someone hit someone, someone hit someone else. Still okay leaning. Its about learning. Guide, lead, love, *Breath*.
I have a son we are still figuring out a diagnosis for and two weeks ago we took him off Ritalin that we tried for three weeks that made him ahem...Not himself. It been a tough few months with him to say the least. In the mean time we are just walking on egg shells around him because nothing else works. So on a not so fun note, today he was at his peak high.
It seemed that everyone else was also. Crying, whining, tattling, hitting, more tattling, juggling of raw eggs, messing of toys, asking for food, asking for food, helping themselves to food without asking for food, accident on the floor, accident on the couch, broken cup, Clogged toilet because someone used Kirkland cleaning wipes to wipe the bum, crumbled chips on floor that NO One did.
Then I did something I hardly ever do, I sat down to watch a movie with the kids in the middle of the day, its called Letter from God, and I SHOULD HAVE NOT WATCHED it with my kids at that time. It's an amazing movie, to say the least but my emotions were already on tilt, that I busted out into ugly cry..yep sir... like 10 times. You know the one where you don't even care what your face looks like, the one where you know your eyes are all blood shot red and your whole face is hot all the makeup has ran off and you have snot like a dripping faucet, yeah that one.
Then we returned to the previous agenda after the movie the one from above. My hubby came home went out and got me a Mikes hard lemonade where I retreated to the couch with no covers, and had to endure the wiff of the semi washed carpet, and I did something even more funnier. I watched Spanish soaps. Si Senor, I never do that unless I am with my mom she has three she watches every day, for as long as I can remember. Something about the hazardous dramas and the picture perfect people make me laugh and tonight it was me and Mike and the Spanish soaps we did just fine.
How about you tell me oh please that you have had one of ''Those days''!

Grateful that His mercies are new every morning...so tomorrow is DO OVER DAY :)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Mom Guilt....anyone..just me?

I'm putting something out there. I have to know if any other moms feel mom guilt at the end of the day?? Guilty that you didn't play with the kids today, guilty that you put them to bed with one story or maybe none. Guilty that you didn't bake cookies with them like they wanted, or played monopoly because the laundry was piled high? Guilty that when you had one small child and a toddler you made your own play dough and now buy it from the store, along with all the other things you used to make at home that now you buy at the store. Or how about this one, guilty that you took your first to toddler gym and story time at the library and every thing you could possibly take a toddler to. Your last baby thinks the gym is Only for mom. I know.. I know... see total guilt. How about this one, guilty that you do not work, or guilty that you have to work?! Why did I yell at him instead of walking away to gather myself first?
And this is just motherhood, if I even add any other relationships..oh shmokie it would be an all-nighter!
I lay in bed and while I should be meditating on Scripture sometimes these thoughts go round and round in my mind, I can't make it stop!
I am going to really put it to prayer that I would find delight in the day and I would sieze the day, and that I would say stop to these guilt thoughts that fill my mind at night! And that I would find my confidence once again in mothering.
Anyone else need prayer for that too, Im serious I would write your name down in my journal...but wait if you give me your name and I don't pray I will feel sooo guilty!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Bethy...you are so my BFFL

I am in a book club on Wen. night with some pretty amazing and loving gals. One of them decided to do this book by Beth Moore So long Insecurity. I took one look at this in the mass email to all the girls and though I am over insecurity! I am confident in who I am in Christ and know I am corky but I am corky for Christ and I am radical and that's all good! Dang...it, I was so wrong. In this book she hits everything and every kind on insecurity. I was over my body image, I am a little cushy. well so what a bit more than just a little, I was fine with that. I don't notice the pretty girl in the room nor do I compare myself to her no longer, good there. Then came this page on page #169, Beth wrote out a prayer that you spend 30 minutes praying, I did well until this very phrase "Forgive me for unbelief, If I realized how valuable I am, my insatiable need for affirmation would be quieted.'' I am stubborn even with the Lord so this one hit me and I told myself ''I can care less if I get affirmed or not..who gives!''..The Lord said to me ''I begg to differ!'' Yes He speaks modern with me...does He with you? :)
This lesson we hit time and time again, Holy Moses when will it enter my fat skull?! I am so so so valuable to Him, why do I need affirmation from anyone else.
I have begged Him to get this over with and just put me under heart surgery and be done! Not so easy, he brings things up every now and then more then than now, but plenty to show me I don't need affirmation from anyone else. Just Him.
Bethy is my BFFL, at least one day she will get to meet me and we will sip tea on her porch...what too much?! Its on my bucket list OK! If you have seen this book on the shelf and thought you don't need it, let me assure you GET IT! Its awesome.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Having it ''Together''

I have done many thing this summer with the kids, I feel more and more confident being in public. WHY am I feeling so anxious about camping?! We have our annual family camping trip planned we have done it for two years this would be our third. Its a blast. Its with family, and it just feels so great to be together with our extended family, and to hang out with no schedule at all. I really enjoy it. For some reason, I feel a handful of anxiety going with the whole family this year. Scared that I will loose someone, scared that someone will go missing, scared that we will make too much noise, scared that I will feel too stressed out to really enjoy it.
We are going with family, so its a plus even though they have their own kids, we always watch out for each others kids. The more I examined my heart the more I realized that I am really scared people looking in will see I don't have it all together...yet!? I know so dumb right, totally insecure and really dumb to think. But its it! I don't have it all together ...there I said it. I am still figuring this thing out, we mess up, a lot. I forget things like all the time, I get short, I sometimes miss that one or two of my kids have skipped out on brushing more than a few times! I don't always know what to do for discipline, sometimes I wing it. I say things I should not to the kids, I say things I should not to my spouse. Sometimes I lock myself in the bathroom when I don't even have to go, just so I can read a magazine. Sometimes I eat the scrapes off the kids plate for my own lunch, somtimes I skip breakfast. I have not worked out in a LONG TIME. I buy and hide dessert for myself. Somtimes I call all my kids my dogs name.... I know thats a bad one. Somtimes I pretend I don't hear an argument to not be invloved in it. Sometimes I but my kids to bed dirty, cause I am too tired for the bath time routine. Sometimes I drive no where just to drive in peace. Sometimes I borrow money from my kids for an iced coffee...I know horrid right?!
If you happen to see me this week, go ahead and pat me on the back and assure me that you maybe also don't always have it ''together'' always. It will affirm to me that I have the freedom to not be ''together!''

Lucky mama...I really am!


This is my oldest, J, he will be ten next month. TEN!
Last night J and I went on a date night. I love these with my kids, we get to talk with no interruptions. We talk about the future, about his feelings, this is humble pie for this mama, because sometimes I have hurt him without even knowing it.
Son number two has been on meds that has made him go super nova crazy and so things at our home has been not peaceful! So, we needed a mom and boy night out! Over shrimp linguine dinner at Red Lobster, we chat and laugh and I watch this boy across from me my heart swells with pride and joy for him.
I posted this picture, because this is really what he does, he comforts.
My little Ruby has become a whiner (ugg!) I can NOT handle whinny kids, my pet peev in a BIG way. When I have had enough of it, I just tune it out. This little sweetie begins to take over when he sees his mama has been over the edge.
''Oh Ruby do you just need big brother to give you loves?'' It works!
Some days we battle my big dude and I. We are so much the same, that we do bump heads. He has a way that's better than mine and we are both stubborn and so on the battle begins. For the most part this I am one lucky mama!
My guy is so brilliant in business. He will be a business man no doubt. At the start of summer he worked and made some money to buy some party poppers. I drove him to Fred Meyer with a silly grin plastered on his face to buy his much anticipated product. We got home and found out a couple of them did not work. He wanted to write the company. Me, feeling I didn't want to take the time to address, stamp, and write out a letter that may end up not being read said ''sometimes this happens!'' NO, he insisted that on the box's there is a non duds guarantee, so he did it all on his own. Every day for a month he checked the mail, I was so cynical...why would they write a kid? One day he got it the letter he was waiting for! It was written by the CEO himself. He was so impressed with my sons letter, he wanted to set up a time to meet him and deliver the products himself. We called the CEO as the letter requested and he spoke with me and told me that he read the letter at a business meeting with TNT and they would love to have a picture of my son because they KNOW he will grow up to be in business! We meet him next week and my son, has already picked out what he will wear!
He is so compassionate too, this is something my heart longs for children that Love Jesus and are compassionate! At dinner my sweet time with him came to a halt when he said ''Mom, I think soon I will be going through puberty!'' all smiles.....Sheesh the room was silent, and there it was. Ten will be a really interesting year!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Kink in the plan




Grace first mani-pedi, she loved it!


My dad and his half the grandkids ;)



My dad and my hubby pretty did this the entire time!

















My parents were here a few weeks ago. IT WAS SO WONDERFUL! I am pretty independent, I can usually do things on my own and really not need people self-sufficient. I have been without my folks since I was 17 and for 14 years I have pretty much survived without them. Its been sad for me, being so far from family. If you know about Puerto ricans you know its tight for life. No matter what happens and how many times you piss each other off the next time you see your family you are kissing them and hugging them. Its just the way we were brought up. When I moved here, I had the same expectation of families everywhere. It was and is not so much the same. Families just look different and my heart had to let so much expectations go, I find myself in the same shoes so often. Its okay, it was and is a growing process for me, over and over and sure I have driven our family crazy as well ;) No family is perfect I get that, mine has never been perfect not even growing up, at all.


Then my parents came and threw a kink in my style. While my dad was here, he steam cleaned and detailed my car, changed my oil, waxed my car, filled my tire, cleaned my garage, fixed broken curtain rods, cleaned the yard. He played tag with my kids in the back yard, set up a tent and had the kids have their first Smore's (Ghana kids) he went shoes shopping with me at Nordstroms people. He pretty much rocks. Wait I forgot he got me a coffee EVERY day, um, coffee is my love language, and I know its not a real one of the 5 but I have made it a 6 and its mine.
I joke but I think my mom has OCD, she has to clean EVERY minute of the day my laundry was always done every corner of my house felt clean. She ran to the store to fill my staples when I ran low and she cooked. PEOPLE that feels so good!

Every day my shoulders were less and less tense, I didn't realize that I was even stressed until they came. I thought I was doing just fine.


They both bonded with the kids so well. My mom took G to the store with her and if you saw the look on her face when my mom would pick something special for her, and she took us to get manis and pedis...so pampering!
My dad would tell E that they both have the same blood because they have the same color skin (my dad is lighter!) but E just smiled when he would say that.
We went to the mountains, we went to festivals, to fairs, to bakeries to restaurant's, and Saturdays were so fun for me. Frank works every single Saturday and its always been so lonely for me. They made my Saturday sunshine.
Then they were getting ready to leave and I could feel my shoulders begin to tense again. I could feel the pulling like a magnet I want this all the time. I know it wouldn't be the same because we wont live in the same house, but I need this.
THE KINK IN THE PLAN:
We are leaving to check out Georgia, I have family in Georgia that LOVE it. We didn't want to move to Florida we didn't ever have a peace about it. My parents would move if we moved and we could have the South, I love the South!
Its a kink because we thought we were right in the place we were going to be forever, I gave up the idea of being with my family and it left a hole in my heart but it was to hard for my hubby to leave his home. We have great friends here, and we do have family, we don't hang out as much but they are still family and we love them and would miss them and our nephews. At this point we feel like we are being squeezed like a lemon and we are craving a change. I am craving loose shoulder's again. So there you have it. If you are from the South close to Roswell, Alpharatta (where my favorite pastor of all just happens to have his church Andy Stanley) give me a shout out. I would love some input.

Monday, August 9, 2010

How are you two?

Someone asked me the other day how my hubby and I are doing. They say everyone is always asking about how the kids are adjusting, but forget to ask about how parents are doing together. I have to admit its like I always say an adjustment! We have not had a date in two months alone on our own. Finding a sitter for five kids is not going to be easy although I have two super teenagers who have signed up for the task...I'm calling you girls soon! I have not felt super comfortable leaving the kids just yet, but I can tell that mom and dad need some time away!
Its been an eye opener for both sides because where I am lacking in Patience my hubby swoops in and does awesome visa versa. Some days we are both very short with the kids, very frustrated with the chaos of tattling and oh my word If someone calls mom or dad on more time...on more time!
However I have sudden glimpse of appreciation in the noise and clutter. I begin to see a man loving on children that were not born from his flesh but is most definitely loved like it. Seeing his big daddy arms around our 8 year old daughter warms my heart to no end. Watching our new guy giggle with dads tickles just sets my heart afire for the reason why I love that man.
Trust me, there are days that we are short with each other and pass each other and some days feel distant from the other, those days where you have to stop time and choose to listen not just ah haa from work conversations. If you have a hubby who shares with you about work at the end of a work day you kinda know what I mean.
At the end of bible story time and tucking kids in and water and potty escapes from the wee ones, we find ourselves tuckered out drinking our tea and sharing about the day. Sometimes I even watch deadliest catch and those crazy Si-Fi shows, just to be in the same room! Tonight I let him fill out my election card for me...yep. I erased one selected official, but people if you know us, you know this is love ;)!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

We are Adjusting ...thats my answer.

Its almost been a month since I have posted. Guess what..my computer crashed. YEP! Its dead. We have taken it in to the Nerd squad just a few times and can save the motherboard blah blah blah. I just know its been a LONG time since I have been able to upload and post. Leaving me with mucho time to take in what exactly just took place in my life in the last two months.
People usually ask me.."How is it going''....to where I always say ''WE ARE ADJUSTING!


HOLY SMOKITO- we have been through a huge change in our family structure. Its been awesome and not awesome all at once. Let me explain.
Its so amzing to go on a mission trip and love on some orphans, sometimes for some people you get disturbed enough to do something. BUT, you are distrubed in your safe life. It can drive a passion in you to do something about it. I have spent counltess hours watching the amazing videos of older children being welcomed by new families and embraced for the first time, there usually is a tear jerking music along with the videos. It all looks so loving, warm, selfless.

A HUGE DIFFERENT story when you are apart of the other side of the video when the music fades, when the reality kicks in that you have broken children looking at you, trying to make sense of what the hell just happened to their lives. I have had two months of bonding and pushing away and bonding and pushing away.
We have distant ourselves from the rest of the world to get settled into a family structure. Along with the reality of life changing has come my reality of I AM A MOM OF FIVE! There are blessings that come with this calling. I get five hugs and lovies in the morning ;) I have five Mothers days cards for my keepsake box, I get to tuck 5 kids in to sleep at night.
I know the people reading this with a dozen kids, I know there are tons of you out there, going 5 dude, quit your complaining! Thats nothing. But 3 to 5 is still an adjustment.
We are all learning where we fit in, and where we need to grow with Gods Grace!
That not so awesome parts of adoption is the heart break of my kids for leaing everything behind. Things they still want thier mama. I cant explain to you the sadness in my sons eyes when I lay in bed with him and he has this saddness when I ask him what does he need he says he misses Ghana. I hold him tightly and say he can cry and be sad I would not feel bad I want him to be able to share that with this mama.
We took the kids to an adoption clinic in Seattle where a serious of test have been done on them. The one thing I did glean from was the doctor sharing with us that our son came in to the orphange when he was almost two so he is stunted wtih the drama and may be a two year old sometimes and that we should allow this for his develplent. Same with our girl who was 6 when she came in. Most definitly I agree. When I am snuggling with little dude, he begins to speak like a baby and want me to hold him like one...I so soak it up. It has helped with bonding for sure.
Blessings to your friends! Until I am able to post again ;)
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Pray for sweet Abby Riggs!!