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Monday, September 29, 2008

Who Loves Elmo?

Elmo cake on the plate (single cake for Julia)

On Julia!

she loved it to say the least. She dug right in.

here is her big 1/2 sheet cake. We had none to bring home. WOW!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

approaching one year since welcoming her into this world

One year ago we were being prepped by Julia's birthmother to expect her to make it to her induction date of the 27th. She was overdue by a few days at this point in time and didn't feel much going on. I'll have to go back one year and read my posts from then.

We are working on hosting a party at my sisters house for Julia's party Saturday on Julia's Birthday to celebrate. We invited (mostly family) 63 people and only asked for regrets. Guess what. NO REGRETS given.

BIGGEST NEWS, Julia's birthmother called us to make sure we knew she wanted to come to Julia's party(we sent an invite to her directly). I was so happy to hear from her and in the short few minutes we got to chat, she sounded so upbeat and very very busy with school and work. I can't wait to see Julia's birth siblings.

I asked DH to prep a letter to H for the last 4 months since we had last written a letter and given pictures to her at our last meet up. So much has happened in the last 4 months that I am excited to share these milestones with her. I hope DH doesn't get mad if I inject some of those milestones if he doesn't mention them. Like when she got her first two teeth, when she said Dada and when she said HOT after I was teaching her that the stove is HOT HOT HOT. hehe

Lets see, we got a full refund for the pictures we had taken at Sears. The lady could not believe we ended buying these and they looked so bad (we had not realized they looked that bad (snot nose and scratch on face) until Dh picked them up. The lady offered us a free sitting and discount on the next group we take. I think we will take her back in thise same outfit to mark the 1 year date of her Beautiful life.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

weekend packed with St. Louis attractions / events.....

Friday afternoon into evening kicks off with several members of our family gathering for the Great Forest Park Balloon Glow. I have not been to one of these events since I was a kid and I can't wait to take Julia. I just hope she is not scared from the hot air blowers. LOL I think we will have DH, myself, Julia, bil, sil, cousins S & S and possibly my brother and sil and their 3 kids. We are planning a picnic and then walk over from the horse stable area to the glow. I am so excited to go. I know, some might just roll their eyes and say, "What is the big attraction?", but this is a tradition in St. Louis that is FREE and FUN.

Saturday is a visit to the S. City YMCA for her second of seven swim lessons this session.

Sunday is a another free event. We are going to the St. Louis Blues Fan Fest. YEAH. Hockey

I hope to fit a visit in to the playground at Francis Park on Saturday sometime or maybe we can go feed the ducks at Wilmore park if the playground is too busy.

what is on tap for your weekend?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

my heart started pounding with fear....DH's keys were gone....

the overwhelming fear a mother gets when their child possibly swallowed something, that something not being GOOD food! It was possibly Dh's truck keys (to no fault of his own, we both have given her keys to play with, but usually with the remote attached, he removed the remote because she kept setting his truck alarm off). After about 1 hour we realized that his keys were missing. Now mind you these keys are NOT big key ring keys, but simply as small as a regular house door lock type of key. There were about 4 keys on the ring. we realized we could not find them after she fell asleep tonight. My fear struck. I was so afraid she swallowed them and we would end up on the ER looking for doctors to xray her to find out where they were at in her belly, or between mouth and belly. We searched the house high and low. (Ewwwww, the dust bunnies under our bed are about to attack us. Dogs, Mommy found all of your toys! Julia, Momma found several of your peek-a-boo balls under the computer stand) I could not let the fear go that she had swallowed these keys. So after contemplating on going into her room after she was asleep with the flashlight, I managed to look under her bed, nope. Under her rocker, nope, under her changing table (ewww again, dang I need a cleaning lady!) and then finally, I went into her closet where I have a 4 stack drawer system for her shoes and with the aide of the flashlight I was able to catch a shinny glimpse of some keys in her drawer full of shoes. OMG... the fear instantly left my gut and I immediately shined the flashlight on her and thanked the good man above that she had not swallowed the keys.

you just never know where a child will put something you need. They find the best hiding places. LOL

shuuuuuuuu, one er trip avoided.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I'm so glad we adults don't remember as we were little infants-toddlers

Oh the pain these children go through with breaking in teeth through the gums. Oh I am so glad we don't remember this time of pain as we were going through as infants and toddlers! YOUCH. It must really hurt her. Fever, Runny nose, Chewing on anything she can get her hands on and winching in pain as she bites into a frozen gogurt to help sooth the pain with the sweet cold feeling of being frozen. Little sweetheart, I promise that the teeth are worth it in the end. And to just think this is the first stage of the process. Tooth #4 is breaking through. She will have her two middle bottom teeth (already in ) along with two FANG teeth up top when this next one breaks through.. No, Not her two front top teeth, those are nowhere to be found. She is going to look a tad funny for a while waiting for those two front top teeth to break through.

She was so snuggle filled tonight. I love that!


Oh, swimming lessons again this Saturday. FUN FUN FUN. She is a water bug for sure.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Celebrating 17 years in lazy style.... Happy Anniversary to my rock!

17 years of marriage is HUGE considering many of our friends are now divorced. We started out as knowing each other through his sister, who was in my grade school and high school class. He was in the Air Force when we were in High school and she would bring her snail mail letters to lunch and read them to me. He use to drive us to soccer games at Lafayette Park in the City when we were in grade school, but never did I expect that he and I would exchange phone numbers on my 19th birthday at his moms house after a downer of a night and a cancelled party. LOL I Had to call his sister the next day and tell her he had asked for my phone number and I hope it would not make her mad. That my friends marks the beginning of our nearly 18.5 years of being together and then now 17 years of marriage. No, it has not all been a smooth road, but honestly those bumps in the road have brought us closer than ever. Many miscarriages later, failed adoptions and now the beautiful daughter we love to the core, it has been worth every moment.

Happy Anniversary my sweetie.

and this is what makes me so proud of him. He is such a wonderful daddy.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

not knowing how she is feeling makes me crazy..... how is her birthmother?

(I don't tend to alway blog about my feelings about adoption lately, but I thought I would share a few of my feelings of late. )

Not one day goes by without thinking how Julia's birthmother and birthsiblings are doing. I hope she is well, I hope Julia's birthsiblings & family are well too. I bet they are busy with going back to school recently.

These are things on my mind every day. I know they are not far away from us, but not seeing them in person lately brings back the thoughts of wondering how are they doing.

I know they think of Julia every day. We think of them every day. These thoughts are a normal part of our lives and I want to share these thought with others that have adopted or are considering adopting and having an open adoption. These ARE normal thoughts and feelings. It is ok to feel this way. I say it is ok to express your concerns on how they are doing if you feel ok to do so out loud or as in here, on a blog.

Sometimes I stop to think if they are eating dinner at the same time we are or if they are out playing at the same time we are. We don't have a direct way to contact them unless we show up unannounced. I won't do that. Sorry, but I don't like it when others drop in unexpected so therefore I just won't do that to her birthfamily either. We have a mutual contact that takes our messages that we have called and passes that message to J's birthmom, but generally we don't hear back for a few days or weeks. This is the case right now. DH left a message with our mutual friend and we have not heard back this time around from either her nor J's birthmom. We have learned over time that this is ok not having a call back the same day or the next, etc.... We leave the choice to call back in her court to make that next move. We know we might not hear from her for a while. The only part of this right now is that this past weekend I sent out invitations for J's first birthday party and sent one to both the mutual friends family and J's birthfamily too. We did not ask for RSVP's, instead we asked for regrets only. Now I wish I had put RSVP's on there. LOL, it sure would help relieve some stress! bahahaha, poor planning on my part. lesson learned for next year. ha

This invitation brings about more thoughts too. Will we get a call / voice mail one day here soon that says her birthfamily won't make it to the party or will we hear that they will come or will we hear from them at all? We will offer a ride to them. We can easily pick them up and bring them back home, or will they decline because they don't wish to be around our family (who are virtual strangers to them since they have only met my mom and DH's mom, although I do talk abou tthem in our letters to her) or is it too hard to be around all of us? These are things I will have on my mind for the next few weeks in prep for her party. I have a good feeling we will get answers to my thoughts and questions in due time, but it seems life for me rules right on the line of that last second basket being made from center court to win the game.... nail biter. Does that make sense.

Do any of you out there have an open adoption relationship to where you have invited your child's birthfamily to the party? How did it turn out if they did come? Or did you do a seperate date to have a more private party with the birthfamily? I thought of offering to have a get together with them later that night after her party at a restaurant or something... maybe that might work? I also want them to know J needs NO GIFTS... them being there is the gift! Them being able to play and interact and smile and laugh out loud is the GIFT from them! That is all we ever need to keep us on that high we feel after each visit. It makes my heart warm when we all give hugs to each other and share fun stories and ask about the kids school day, etc....

Since Julia's birthday is coming up,DH put together a homemade invitation... Elmo is the theme. I can't wait to decorate (we are having the party at my sisters because her sq footage is about double ours in our City houses. I even got an Elmo pinata. FUN. I gotta find some good snacks for the younger children for that one. Grandma and my sis also found another pinata in the shape of the number 1 so we will fill both .. one for small kids with pull string door and the other for the bigger kids (nieces and nephews) to hit with the baton. I am going to have to pay someone to take photos as I will be so busy with the kids and events.

How did your first birthday party go for your first child? Were you nervous? did you enjoy? WHat party favors did you have for both younger children and older nieces and nephews etc...??

Cupcakes or should buy a sheet cake and a small cake for Julia? *Elmo theme of course*.. yes, we will do a more princess or not so gender neutral party next year. hehe. I can't help if the girl loves elmo, actually I feed her addiction by buying her toys modeled after ELmo. hehe

I thank the Lord every moment for Julia's birthmother and her decision to bring Julia into this world and selecting us to become her parents for the rest of all of our lives.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Fall times brings us to baby resale events . Kid Mania's . Baby Mania's...deals and free items too

Ok, so far these are the events I have listed. IF YOU KNOW OF ANY OTHER SALES IN AND AROUND ST. LOUIS, PLEASE EMAIL ME OR POST TO ME and how to get ahold of you for details. I so need a wagon, clothes, shoes and games for her to play (I'll start looking hard for these items after her birthday party on the 27th. shaking my head, I still can't believe she is going to be 1 year old.

Mehlville High School Baby mania sale (outside) on October 4th 2008. : this is what the craigslist ad said:
Upcoming Baby Mania Sales
The dates for Baby Mania have been set. The fall sale will be October 4th and the Spring 2009 sale will be May 2nd!!!

The Mother Of Twins Club sale is Saturday September 27 open to the public for a 1.00 entrance fee from 1 - 3 pm. BOOOHIIIISSSSSS, I can't go to this sale this year. BUT for a good reason. We will be celebrating Julia's first Birthday party on her Birthday that day. YEAH!

next :
HUGE Kids & Baby Consignment Sale - RE-SALE EVENT!
Price: Free

Street address: 1420 S. Sappington Rd, Crestwood, 63126 View map
Location: St. Louis
Date Listed: Aug-16-08

HUGE Kids & Baby Consignment Sale - Resale Event!

**** NOW REGISTERING SELLERS - all are welcome! ****

St. Elizabeth’s Gym
1420 S. Sappington Rd., Crestwood, MO 63126
(2 blocks north of Crestwood Plaza)

Saturday, September 27th, 8:00am - 5:00pm
Sunday, September 28th, 8:30am - 12:30pm (since I can't go Saturday, I bet I'll find a way to go Sunday!
(most items 50% off on Sunday!)

1000’s of Gently Used, Quality Items for KIDS: Kids Clothing Sizes Newborn - Size 16 * Baby gear * TOYS, TOYS, TOYS! * Costumes * Outdoor Toys * Dancewear * Shoes Puzzles & Board Games * Videos & DVD's * Sports equipment * Strollers * Books * Bikes & Scooters * Crib & Youth bedding Wagons * Maternity Clothes * Electronic toys * Kids Room Decor

Volunteers and Consignors shop at a private presale the night before the sale opens to the public! New volunteers and consignors are always welcome!

FOR MORE INFO: www.StorkLady.net


OMG.. I can't wait to show you the "alley" finds my sister called me about tonight. A daycare was cleaning out their old playground items and they setit all out by the dumpster so we swarmed and took what we thought was usable. My sister knows one of the guys putting the stuff out so maybe in the future we can just show up and take the items down for them for free for us to have for free!!

something similar to this...

oh and I found this slide on the curb by my sisters neighborhood. A little tikes slide like this one. http://www.littletikes.com/toys/Image-Zoom.aspx?ProductID=2660&MediaID=JPD4574F_OL.jpg&BackupImage=productimages/full/JPD4574F_full.jpg

then my sister found this coupe car in the alley next to me.. (These items are not trashed at all: http://www.littletikes.com/toys/cozy-coupe-ii-car.aspx?Ne=1&N=26+140

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Sweet Sunday Snacks / lunch, weekend update

This was Julia's Sunday lunch.

She loves it when I cut her grilled cheese into the shape of a butterfly(basically she hates the crust). We got this cookie cutter at her friends' first Birthday party back a few months ago. I started doing the shape cut out a few weeks back and we have not looked back since then. See how a simple cookie cutter can spruce up lunch and excite the little one? Aside of her grilled butterfly cheese sandwich is cut up grapes and cut up watermelon. She LURRVVSSSS her watermelon too.

I took off work Friday so that Julia and I could visit Shaw's Garden, or you might know it as Mo Botanical Gardens (sorry, but I have to say that I grew up 3 blocks away from MO BOT Gardens and we did not call it that, we called it Shaw's Garden). It was an overcast day, a little cool, but a great day. I Had not been there for about 10 years so I am glad I went. K and her twins V & A met us there. We had a great time viewing all the Niki sculptures and playing on/in them (the ones you are allowed to play on). Then we headed to the Children's play area. What a great place. I know I will go back in the warmer months so that Julia can play in the water fountains. K and the girls had to leave so J and I walked down around the Japanese Garden and fed some bread to the carp / coy fish.

I must say that the Japanese Garden is now the proud owner of a (green color) Soothie binky complements of Julia. Bahahahaha.. no, it was not fun at the time because Julia was having a fit because she did not have her binky to help her fall asleep, but it is funny to think that we are most likely not the first mom and daughter / child to lose a binky to the beautiful lush greenery that lines the path to the beautiful japanese garden bridge and zen garden.

here is a picture with J and her two friends V & A

Julia turns 1 in a few weeks time and I just cherish each moment with her. I love it when she says momma or dadda when looking for us. She points to the birds in the sky. She points to nearly everything and we say what it is and sometimes she tries to say that word. She has such a great memory. Such curiosity. Such love. I am so thankful for her in our lives and her birthmother's decision to bring her into this world and asking us to become Julia's parents. We thank her each day by saying hello to her picture on the wall near her changing table. We say hello to her birth siblings who also have pictures on her wall along with her birthgrandmother. I miss them. I hope we hear form them soon.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

What do you pay for milk?

Julia is on cows milk. Whole/Vit D. These are the prices I have found lately

Schnucks (depends on the store) usually $4.00

Shop-n-Save $4.03 (as of last night)

Target $3.79 (just raised prices from 3.59)

Quick Trip $3.49

so Quick Trip gets my business.

What are you paying (Whole/2%?)and where are you buying it? I know everyone drinks different grades of milk, but we are instructed to buy whole milk for her to drink. I hardly ever drink milk so DH drinks the whole milk also.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Sweet Summertime at Suson Park

FIRST OFF, I sure hope the folks in LA and MS have gotten out of the path of Hurricane Gustov. My work has policies written in these areas and are again in 3 years time taking a major hurricane damage hit. You can't stop mother nature. I hope people took the mayors suggestions and got out of town.

Onto a good Saturday report from this weekend.

What a great FREE attraction in the Greater St. Louis area to go to. Suson Park was our destination on Saturday. DH was out of town for the memorial service for his Great Uncle that went to heaven this past week so Julia and I took off out of the house on Saturday and went to a few yard sales (she really loves looking at toys now, but we did not buy any big toys, but good clothes bargains and lots of books that were new! ). Suson Park has a new playground, but honestly it was too crowded so we stuck to visiting the animals instead. Julia just loved it.

First was a visit to the mini ponies (warning, they do BITE like the sings say, just ask my purse hanging off the stroller handle):

then she took a fascination with Tom Turkey (that is what we decided to name him):

Then she got a nice close up of the goats and sheep. One goat kept coming up to the fence and wanting to be fed (but you can't do that at Suson Park).

Julia was so cute with the Mule in the stables (and cows too), but this one really got her fancy. She kept turning around at me and giving me a HUGE smile like she was so pleased to have this Mule in her vison. She kept talking to him, pointing to him and saying something like "go".... (this is her camera ham smile too. Nice snaggletooth, huh? ):