Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The First Days of School

An unplanned bath...

Caden got in the tub this morning and when I left the room Paige decided she wanted to get in too! She was quite proud of herself.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Holt Picnic 2007

Last Saturday we went to the annual picnic our adoption agency has for the midwest. It was about 45 minutes away and the first day in weeks that it didn't rain. The kids had fun, especially at the splash park. Paige was content to observe though! It was fun to see so many other families like ours and definately a good thing for the boys. They are always so inthralled when they realize there are other boys with sisters from China.


Ahhh, the weather. Let's just say we've had some interesting weather this summer. Recently we even made national news! Apparently a town a few minutes south of us got 10 inches in one night last week. I think we did too because our sump pump decided it couldn't take any more (this was following about two weeks of rain/thinderstorms). Trace went to play downstairs and immediately came back up to tell me there was something I needed to see. I was not impressed. Two floods in one year is enough for me thank-you-very-much! We learned a little last time and most of our stuff was ok. But nearly all of our books including yearbooks were completely soaked. The good part is that each time this happens we toss out a little bit more! The basement is getting emptier each time!

Family Recipes ...

I realized that if we were going to have our annual strawberry glaze then it would be up to me (and a couple little helpers) to figure it out. Which we did and Rick and I loved every last one! The boys were underwhelmed but that just left more for us!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Video Is Up!!!

Scroll down on the right a little bit and you'll see "Paige's Adoption Video" click under it on "Our Journey to Paige". This is the video I spent six months working on and it is originally 15 minutes long. Youtube only allows ten so I had to do some major editing! Unfortunately I'm not happy with the end result of the edited version, but it gives you the basics. I won't be going back to make any changes either since it took over three hours to get onto youtube! The original had much more labeling and the music was timed and there were a lot of photos of others in our group as well as some during the time we waited. Well, enjoy it...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Try this...


I'm hoping that if you click on this link it will take you to the movie that I made of the boys more than a year ago! If this works then I'll attempt Paige's video!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

End of summer busyness...

This last weekend was pretty crazy around here. I think we are finally recovered! Friday night Rick and I went on a date whoo-hooo! Can't remember the last time we did that. Saturday morning Rick mowed the lawn and nearly died of heat stroke, then helped our new neighbors/friends move in next door. I spent most of the day back and forth between the two houses and supervising the six kids! It also happened to be the block party on the street behind us so the older kids ran amok over there getting their faces painted, bouncing in the bounce house, playing in the fire hydrant, and eating free snow cones. They didn't all collapse into bed until well after 10:00. Sunday they had fun having friends live next door and Trace was supposed to spend the night. I think the weekend had worn him out too much though and he came home around 9:30. Then yesterday we borrowed a smaller bike for Caden to try and learn on and guess what!? He rode on two wheels all the way around the block! Yeah! Finally! Friday night he also lost his second tooth! It has been loose for months and the extremely crooked adult tooth was breaking through behind it. After I explained that the tooth fairy would leave him money AND his tooth if that was what he wanted his response was, "I like this tooth fairy thing!"
I get to spend today trying to get this house caught up now! Mercifully no one has called to see it in the last couple of days but I know my luck is running out!
One last thing! For those of you reading this who haven't called in a while because you already know what's happening in our life - CALL! I don't know what's happening in YOUR life! I miss everybody...

A few of "my favorite things." (Grapes & Flip Flops!)

Pretty scary guys.

Look who's on TWO wheels!

Monday, August 06, 2007

I am SOOOO excited!!!

On the day we were given Paige we discovered tucked into her rolled up sleeves the tinyest notes with Chinese writing on them. Once we were home we had them translated and sure enough they were the name and address of her foster family! I started assembling a care package and in February I sent it off. Since it was so expensive to send I had no way of tracking it and therefore had no idea if they ever received it. Well in today's mail was an envelope with a handwritten Chinese return address! I started shaking because I knew there wasn't anyone in China who would be hand writing us other than the foster family! Sure enough it is a two page letter (written in Chinese) and several pictures. She included a picture of herself, her husband (?) holding Paige, her daughter (?), her son (?) both grown, and one of Grace and Paige together. WOW! What an amazing connection this will be for Paige. I can not wait to get the letter translated! Hopefully soon!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Coast to Coast in 2007

We arrived home from New Jersey around 2am after DRIVING from Newark airport in a rental van! Our intention was to fly home but there weren't any flights we could get on so we rented the van, loaded everyone up and headed out! It took us 12 hours and really wasn't too bad. It means that we have literally driven from one coast to the other this summer and the kids have been in 12 states! ( WA, OR, ID, UT, WY, NB, IO, IN, OH, Penn, NY, NJ)
We had a wonderful time in Jersey! It was so great to get re-aquainted with Tom and Diana and to meet Emily. Ella has grown and changed since we last saw her in China too! It was fun to get to know her goofy, happy self rather than the somber one we met before. Paige's personality was quite evident as we watched her with another little one her own size. Watch out! She has no problem taking what she wants and then "spitting" raspberries at the poor soul who tries to get it back! She also does not enjoy sharing a stroller with anyone and pinched and scratched poor Ella to show her displeasure! But they were also awfully cute following each other around, giving hugs/kisses, and just being together. We all enjoyed a day at the Jersey Shore with beautiful weather. Trace had one of the best days of his life learning to Boogie-board! He spent hours in the water and got aquainted with the lifeguard when he drifted too close to the jetty and couldn't get away. Paige eventually got used to the water and completely enjoyed the sand too. Each day was pretty packed with swimming, family gatherings, arcades, carnivals/boardwalks, you-name-it! I was worried that Trace would be bored but I don't think he asked me once when we were going home. Caden kept begging us to stay "just one more day"! On Tuesday, Rick and I took the boys into New York City to see Ground Zero. They are well aware of what happened there and we all wanted to see it before it was all built over. Unfortunately it is really just a HUGE construction site right now and the safety fencing is really hard to see through. It also felt like it was 110 degrees and 110% humidity! I'm not sure what it really was but it was REALLY hot. We rode the train in to Penn Station then got on the subway right to Ground Zero. After walking around the site we walked down by the water to see the Statue of Liberty (waaay off in the hazy distance) then headed back to the subway and home. It was a pretty long day and we are all really glad we did it. Someday I'd maybe like to return to New York with out kids but I won't be dissapointed if I never see it again either! Paige was very happy to wake up in her own house this morning. She ran around like a banshee just like when we got home from Vancouver! It is pretty funny. Hope you enjoy the pictures!
Now it's time for school to start!!!!

A week in Jersey...