Monday, September 10, 2012

Weekend Ramblings - Past Week September 4th - 9th!

I haven't really "journaled" on this blog in a long time. So I am going to ramble a bit today and reminisce about this past week. Maybe I will include a picture, maybe not; our blog has become a family photo album. I really admire Dawn at Eggrolls and Chopsticks; she posts so frequently and tells a story, shares an opinion, relates to all of us, encourages new thoughts.....and of course she has a really nice family!!
Gone are the days of researching about the international adoption scene, no more researching about the risks of the "unknown" as to what possibly could go wrong in the journey to Alyzabeth including what would her health status be.... No more anticipations of when and what if's.... We have moved to documenting (taking pictures of) her weekly life, how she has grown and the many first we did get to witness and enjoy. More family pictures, our grown children, our granddaughters, the extended Florida family from In-Laws, Out-Laws, cousins and friends. Our Maine and Missouri families. More babies born. We have been Great Aunt and Great Uncle for a long time.... (how old is Lane!?).
I post photos because it is easy. A picture tells so much more. The joy on faces, the relationships through visits and family celebrations. Each week, each month, then another year goes by. Another wedding anniversary. Another Forever Family Day. Ford has been "retired" for five years (his most important job began as our "stay-at-home-Daddy"). Now we are in the month of September. School is back in session which means dear Daughter is back to teaching after enjoying the summer off. Our son turned 40 years old. Our youngest will turn six and a few more birthdays in between this month to celebrate. I will retire in two years (and will find a "fun" job for a few more years after that, a new career, a new opportunity).
Back to this past week.
AA was class leader this past Friday and as such she was to bring in ten objects and one other for show and tell. She took in her first golf tournament medal. She said she told the class that she played her first tournament in Orlando (Kissimee) and earned a medal. One student told her that she played putt-putt golf and asked if it was the same. AA said the teacher, Ms. Reed, told the class, no, AA played "real" golf. Now that I typed the word "real", it always reminds me of birth parents and "real" parents. AA understands that she had a China Mom and Dad. She asked who were her real Mommy and Daddy. Of course, we said us! What else can we say? I know alot of adoptive children deal with this, from well meaning people asking to their own inquisitiveness; wanting to know their roots. AA has asked us to help her draw a family tree. I am thinking of making the lower part of the trunk her China birth parents, AA's name on the trunk, then our family on the branches. How have you done this? Family is family no matter how you come into your family, it is hard to explain to a five year old. It is confusing enough with her being an Aunt, having nieces her same age!
Back to this past week.
After school, AA goes to practice her golf a few times, this past week they went to Eagle Harbor (on Fleming Island) but didn't complete all nine holes due to thunderstorms. They occasionally make pudding and this past Friday, they made ice cream with Oreo cookies crushed in it. Ford thought of this as he had a recent message from cousin Rhett in Oklahoma about getting together, so in honor of Rhett, AA had his favorite cookie crushed into her homemade ice cream.
Next, what is not happening: Church. I found this article about why the church is declining in some churches. This really resonates with us, our waning interest began with many discussions on how people would seem to be wonderful, spiritual people, kind to all; but in conversations (Bible studies, in their home, at a restaurant, etc) a different picture took place. Walls that were not welcoming. Exclusion to people with other life styles, closed mind on important issues that should be discussed listening equally at all opinions without condemning and judging. It made us feel uncomfortable. Wrestling with how to handle these situations. We truly love some of these "church" friends. So now to decide about our reverse silent judging. Are we just as bad by avoiding? We are going to make an effort to belong to a church, do what we should and not shy away. We need to practice what we preach. We have stayed on the outer circles of  our church, looking in only when we feel we "should" go. Yes, for Alyzabeth, we do need to ensure she knows all about the Christian faith, so she can be an adult who will believe and question and grow in her faith how she chooses.
Back to this past week.
We signed AA up for a weekly Legos club at school (called bricks4kidz). She says she loves Legos. This is what the purpose of the one hour after school classes say on their website: We offer project-based kinetic programs designed to teach principles and methods of engineering and architecture, as well as the concepts of mathematics, technology, science, history, filmmaking, and team building for children 3-12yrs. Maybe the engineering came out in me, so I am so promoting this experience!! All she wants is Harry Potter Quidditch Lego set (Yes, we bought it, you know she loves HP). We also bought a Lego organizer as she has a few other sets (with LOTS of little pieces).
Between golfing, Lego class, school and family time, we are still working on Alyzabeth's "quietness". Not sure how to describe it. She plays around other children, not really joining in that we can see. Others have told us she is fine when we are not in sight. I am hoping this is true. She seems timid, withdrawn and won't speak up around others, even those she has known for years. She is very smart, reads beyond her grade level and has very intelligent conversations with us. We are open to advice, still wondering if this is her personality or should we be doing something relating to "attachment" (I have read enough to know how she behaves does fit into the "warnings" of possible future functioning problems). I love how Daddy talks to her, tells funny stories to get her involved. He has such a sweet heart. His daily lunch notes to her express a love for her and for her to enjoy school.
Back to this past week.
We haven't been to the Riverside Arts Market in a very long time (RAM). We do love seeing all the crafts and listening to the music on the river. A great family outing. We always go to Moon River Pizza afterwards, to patronize a local business that does "it right". We will do some Christmas shopping there so did a preview of any new vendors.
AA played in a local U.S. Kids golf tournament on Sunday, the 9th, at Deercreek Golf Club. She did a great job, again playing against the oldest girl in the age group (another second place finish which is also last place since there is only the two girls in the youngest age group). The girl is friendly, has great manners and will have a wonderful golf career. We do love that AA gets a medal! We may post someday about these golf clubs that host the Kids event. Some are so much better than others. Deercreek is not on our "Best of" list.
I haven't mentioned on this blog about my family in Maine much. We tend to only blog about the good news. We also tend to tell more on Facebook, so much easier to drop in on Facebook, read the home news feed and post a thought at that moment. My Mom had a hip joint replacement surgery in July and she continues to recover. One noticeable problem we all had was trying to decipher all the Doctor's orders. One said all is well. One said walk more, get moving. One said rest and ice pack. One just ignored her. Now, after six weeks, her substitute Doctor (her's was on vacation) said she has been over-doing and needs more rest, go back to using the walker and ice pack more. My Mom knew something didn't seem right, that she wasn't seeing as much progress as she had expected. So does she slow down? Again, time will tell. She goes back for another check up in two weeks. Because of this, she will not be able to fly here for our family September birthday party. She will be missed.
My two sisters are all doing well. Their lives get exciting at times with their families, then we seem to be in a routine that is familiar. My oldest sister just celebrated her (their) 30th Wedding Anniversary. Amazing! Maybe I will post one of her wedding photos. It's good to look back and see the happy faces. My younger sister is always energetic, moving, doing, having fun. But her health issues slow her down. Recently, many ear infections and vertigo-like spells have moved her to see some specialists. So many potential causes, most likely the inner ear problem. Since I had two years of HORRIBLE vertigo spells (which now she almost has me convinced that they were not really vertigo - so what is wrong with me?!). I am hoping she finds out soon and get to heal and get back to her bubbly self!
And most of all, feeling of what to do next. How to pay it forward in this world while I still have time (I hope!). We finally made up "homeless bags" and have given out several (HomeDaddy-Don gave us the idea years ago). The bag has a typed note with a Bible verse and prayer for them, pull top/flip top canned food, some snacks like trail mix, bottled water, a pair of socks, razor, toiletries, and $2.00 cash.  Not much, but if they are truly homeless or need a few essentials to get them through a day, we tried to include it. We support a local Children's Home and want to do more. We have been reflecting on our future (which with the market and real estate crash in 2007 - 2009 we are not where we thought we would be - a good lesson on not presuming upon tomorrow! There's a Bible verse on that!) and what we should do. Down sizing, being closer to our grown children; family. Spending summers in Maine, raising Alyzabeth with our older wisdom we have hopefully gained. We love being around our family, and hope to be blessed with a long, happy life.
So this is my rambling, chatting about what ever came to my mind. My wonderful husband is so much better at writing, he has the touch, but nagging him about blogging hasn't worked, so am still hoping he has a "guest" post occasionally. Maybe I will enlist AA to begin her journal. Please leave a comment and let us know what are your thoughts and comments. We learn so much from our fellow bloggers and bloggy friends.
Happy thoughts and wishes to all our readers.

1 comment:

dawn said...

Why thank you but the only reason I am posting so much its because I told myself that this year I would post something everyday for one whole year. Is it December yet?????

I really want the girls to have a great collection of stories and photos when they get "old/older".

You do post a lot and I have to agree Facebook is so much easier and I like the fact that you can monitor who reads it. I often think about going private