Time is running out!

chrome-buffalo-shirtYou know when you’re out shopping and you see something awesome but you just can’t pull the trigger and buy it. Then you go home, realize you absolutely need it, and rush back the next day only to find it gone? I had that happen to me with the raddest New Kids on the Block t-shirt e-vah and I’ve never quite been able to let it go. I’d hate for it to happen to you.

Don’t let our awesome t-shirts be the one that got away! Only 2 days left to buy! Do it now before it’s too late! Because our t-shirts are “oh oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh, oh oh oh oh oh, the right stuff!”

T-shirt Up!

T-shirts are now available! You can visit this link here —->CLICK ME FOR AN AWESOME TEE to buy one. Or ten. Or twenty. Use your own judgment. But I recommend 10. :)

The shirts are $22 plus $5.99 shipping for orders up to 10 pounds. So, if you and your friends or family all want one, order together and only pay shipping once! And, don’t forget they are only available for 10 days so get yours while you can!

Don’t forget!

finger with string on itT-shirts go on sale this Monday, January 13th! They will only be available for 10 days and they are awesome so you’re definitely going to want to snatch one up! Don’t wait too late because they will be gone!

Mommy Mush

“I love you Mommy.”
“I’m glad you my mommy.”
“You my mommy forever!”
“You a good mommy and you my mommy!”
“I’m gonna go to school now but I’ll be back soon. Don’t worry, I’ll be back soon Mommy.”
“I’m glad you here and that I have a mommy.”
“I’m happy you not have a tail.”

These are the things I’ve been getting from G lately. With the exception of the tail comment, they all pretty much make me want to cry. Because they are always accompanied by a huge hug, sloppy kiss, and the shining eyes of a sweet little girl who’s just thrilled to have a mommy in her life. She’s been pretty vocal about mommy-love for a few months now and I’m not quite sure where it came from. She’s always been affectionate and pretty liberal with the “love yous” but suddenly she doesn’t just love me, she loves that I’m her mommy. That she has one. Bless her heart.

It’s things like this that happen during the day that suddenly remind me that my kids are adopted. That they haven’t been here forever. Honestly, most of the time that doesn’t even occur to me. They are so “mine” it’s hard to remember that we’ve only been together for a relatively short time. I’ve even forgotten that we look different to people out in public. When I catch people staring now, I start checking my nose for unwanted visitors or just assume that I am looking extra fine that day. It always takes me awhile to remember that my kids are black and I am white and that might look strange to some people. Life is good. And surprisingly normal. I remember when they first came home and all my fears about never feeling normal again. That seems crazy now. My normal is different but it’s still there. And now my normal feels like it’s always been there. Like they’ve always been here. And then G reminds me about a time when she didn’t have a mommy. Or A cries on the way home from school because only one sister is home to greet him. Those are the times when I’m reminded of how we became a family and I’m just so grateful that I get to be in their lives. That I am the one who gets to fill the mommy-gap that they used to have. It’s still hard managing emotions sometimes of a family created by adoption but I can’t think of anything better for my life than where I am right now. Who I’m with and who I’m waiting on. These kids are amazing and I’m so thankful that I get to be their mommy.

Feeling sappy today. Sorry. :)

New Fundraisers!

Well 2014 is starting off much colder that I would have liked. But we’re all well and ready for summer the new year so I’m gonna focus on the good things to come instead of the fact that the high temperature for today was already recorded at 7 a.m. Brrrr.

Of course, our biggest hope and wish for 2014 is that Sister will come home. Just to recap and update you all, Sister is legally our daughter in the Home Country and she has been cleared to enter the US by our government. She should have been home in October. But, the Home Country has instituted a suspension on all exit letters for adopted children and will not allow her to leave the country. This letter is basically all we are waiting on to bring her home. And we don’t know when we will get it. The suspension began in September and, since then, we’ve heard the words “up to a year,” “at least a year,” and “maybe two months.” We really have no idea. This is extremely frustrating for us and it’s getting to be pretty hard on her sweet siblings, A and G. It’s also put us in a slight bind financially. In country care fees have doubled since we first started this journey and we have no idea how long we will be paying them. We have already burned though our “travel” fund and are basically starting from scratch in 2014. So, here come the fundraisers!!!

We’re really excited about the fundraisers we’ve got coming up this year and I hope y’all will be too! The first that I want to tell you about is our awesome t-shirt drive withChrome Buffalo. Partnering with Chrome Buffalo to sell t-shirts will allow us to raise money for Sister’s expenses without the crazy expensive overhead costs of printing them ourselves. We’ll have a 10 day t-shirt drive starting January 13th. That means that, once it starts, you’ll have 10 days to buy one of these awesome t-shirts for yourself, your kids, your mom, your mailman, and pretty much everyone you’ve ever met. You can (and please do) also share our story, link, blog, etc. with all your friends in case they want to purchase about 50 t-shirts as well. This is the design that we’ll be selling and we’re really excited about it.

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So! Go ahead and put it on your calendar and spread the word! Awesome t-shirts for sale starting January 13th! Whoo-hoo!

This next fundraiser I’m even more excited about! See, it’s very frustrating being stuck in this standstill and not being able to do anything about it. It’s an extremely helpless feeling and we’re constantly looking for ways to feel productive. One way that L has decided to feel be proactive is by taking a vow to not shave his beard until the exit letter suspension is lifted. While I doubt that his increased hairiness will hurry the process, I completely support his need to feel involved in it. So let’s see if we can turn that stubble into money! If y’all will donate, L will not shave or trim his beard until the suspension is lifted. When you donate, you can also vote. Your votes will decide what happens when the beard disappears. Once the suspension is lifted, L will shave his beard into whatever style you, the voters, choose. He will then rock that facial fashion for one month or until we travel to bring Sister home! (I offered to stop shaving my legs but he wasn’t on board. Go figure.) So, if you enjoy pictures of grown men with ridiculous facial hair, this is the fundraiser for you. I’ll make sure to post pictures of his face art in completely inappropriate places for you all. :) You can find your options on our Fundraising page. Please, vote with your funny-bone. And your pocketbooks.

So that’s what we’ve got for now. I hope y’all are as excited about them as we are. I’ll also be posting a video tomorrow that you can use to share with your friend on Facebook and Twitter to get the word out. It’s a pretty awesome video, if I do say so myself, that features part of a very special song written for us by the one and only Rick Brantley. So you definitely want to hear that!

So long, farewell…

It’s time 2013, it’s time. Time to say goodbye. Forever. I can’t say I’ll miss you because it’s time to move on. But I can say that I loved you. I really loved you. Remember the time we stayed up all night sewing circus costumes and we got a little crazy…with the glue gun. And that day on the beach. You know the one. We also took some major steps in our relationship. We even bought a house together. It was an amazing year. I’d be lying if I said different.
But…it’s not me. It’s you. You’re over. So, goodbye. Here are some pictures to remember me by.

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*shhh* Just walk away.

So this was Christmas…

Well Christmas is over and I am tired. Oh so tired. But we did have a good one. Actually it was a great one. Only one thing could have made it better. The one thing that A and G really wanted for Christmas. The one thing we all did. The one thing that we hope is coming soon.

It’s hard to celebrate a holiday with a Sister-shaped hole in our family. It’s hard not to imagine her face on Christmas morning and wonder which present would have been her favorite. It’s tough to see A and G sitting in the hallway holding hands and trembling with excitement and to realize that there’s room for one more. There should be one more. There used to be one more.

During this holiday season, A asked many times if Sister would make it for Christmas. Where was Sister’s stocking? Where were Sister’s gifts? If ever a surprise were mentioned, A always assumed Sister’s homecoming was it. I’ll be honest, that kind of sadness sucks a little fun out of even the best Christmas season.

So, when is she coming? I have no idea. We are still waiting for the suspension of exit letters to be lifted and have no idea when that might be. That one little letter is literally all we need for her to come home and I’d be lying if I said that wasn’t driving me crazy. One more month? Two? Another year? We don’t know. We really don’t know.

What we do know is that the adoption we thought would be finished four months ago will be stretching into 2014. Indefinitely. So we are going to have to do a little more fundraising. Keeping Sister in country is not cheap. Her care, per month, is at least $500 – not including medical expenses and care packages. It’s much more than we had planned for. It has doubled over the past year and we never expected to be paying this long. And we have no idea when it will end. So be on the lookout for more fundraisers and, if your New Year’s resolution is to give more, please consider us. :)

So as not to be a total downer, I will leave you with a pretty great picture from our pretty great Christmas. Even in the midst of our struggle, we have so very much to be thankful for. And we are thankful. For our children, our family, our home, and everyone of you who have been with us on this journey for over 2 years now. And we are hopeful for what the new year is going to bring.  We are praying that it brings us Sister! Soon!

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Done!

NaBloPoMo, you are done! And, you are, my bee-yotch.

It feels so good to finally be finished with this challenge! It was fun but it was also extremely difficult! I liken it to one of those marathon thingys all my insane Facebook friends seem to be so fond of. But I did it and I am pretty dang proud of myself for it. I know plenty of bloggers who didn’t quite make it and, while I should say “Good try!” I’m going to say “Neiner neiner neiner.” Just kidding! Sort of.

So, did I learn anything from this blogtastic month? Eh. I learned it’s hard to find time to blog. But I kind of already knew that. I learned that I like to have a reason to lock myself in a room alone. I pretty much already knew that too. I don’t know. I didn’t really have any sort of blog-iphany. Mostly, I’m just really proud of myself for hanging in there and finding something to post about even on days when I really didn’t feel like making the effort. At the beginning of the month, I didn’t promise quality, just quantity and I feel that I upheld that vow, maybe a little too well. But thanks y’all for reading and for hanging in there with me. It’s been a long great month!
Let’s never do it again sometime!

Be our guest!

I hope at some point to have time to sit down and write about how awesome our Thanksgiving has been. It has been truly wonderful and, it’s still not over! So, I don’t have time for a long, reflective, or even descriptive post today. Luckily, I have my other renovation post that I’ve been keeping in my back pocket and saving for a busy day.

We had our very first overnight guests at our new/old house this week so I wanted to make the upstairs guest area as nice as possible. I’ve been wanting to fix this up for awhile and it was great to finally have a reason and a motivation to do it. And it turned out great! I love it so very, very much. This area is also where I go to work on my computer and take my migraine sleeps so it’s also a nice, calming, quiet place for me. And it couldn’t be more perfect. So, y’all come visit!

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