Thursday, March 29, 2012

What A Pity.

I get the look all the time.  In the grocery store.  At Target.  When we're on a walk in our neighborhood and pass somebody we don't know

The look.

Most mama's like me who have differently-abled kids know exactly what I'm talking about.  I could probably stop right here and not say another word.  But for the rest of you, I'll explain.

The look says "Oh - I'm sorry...".

It says "That poor family...".

It says "How did that happen?  She's so young!".

It usually goes hand in hand with a sympathetic smile.  You know - the one that says "You poor thing - I feel so sorry for you...".

If we happen to be in the check-out behind someone with a 'healthy' or 'typical' baby, well Lord have mercy.  I can see the guilt oozing from that new mama - who was quite perky just a minute ago.    Her look says "Ohh - I'm so sorry you got one that was damaged, instead of one like mine".

Well guess what, lady?  I didn't want one like yours.  That's right - you heard me.  I chose this kid.  Yes, I knew he had Down syndrome.  I knew he would struggle with things that your baby will learn quickly.  I knew he'd log hundreds - no, probably thousands - of therapy hours before he graduates high school (and yes - he will graduate high school).  I knew things would be different.  I knew it would be challenging.

Does this look like the face of a kid who deserves your pity?
But I don't want your sympathy.  Don't feel sorry for me, please.  Don't pity me.

And don't feel sorry for Carter, either.  Knowing that everyone pities you is no way to go through life.  This kid will have to work harder than his friends.  He'll have to put in more effort than his siblings.  He'll have to try harder than his teammates.  But don't pity him.  Because some day, when your baby is 17 and screaming at you because you won't buy her $94 designer jeans - my kid will be asking if he can have another banana.

It's the tradeoff.

Just treat us like normal people.  Like a normal family.  Treat Carter like a normal kid.  Because really - in most ways, that's exactly what he is.

I'm just sayin'.

One Thing I Know For Sure: Blessed - so, so BLESSED to be this boy's mama.  Don't pity me.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Finally & Never

Bear with me.  This post might be all over the place.  But you need to understand that there is a box of Girl Scout Cookies - Lemonades, to be exact - sitting next to me.  Calling my name.  And I dare not open them, because I know I won't stop at one.  I just wanted to look at them.  Enjoy them a bit, and think about what it would be like to actually eat them.

Moving on.....



I finally did it.  I finally used the leaves that we picked up on Carter's orphanage grounds, and put them into a frame.

View from outside the orphanage
Is that legal?  Walking to a back office of the airport in handcuffs definitely crossed my mind when we had to fill out the customs form and state whether we had plants/nuts/seeds in our luggage.  Because I said no.  But maybe I should have said yes.  Anyhow....

Orphanage grounds
I wanted to have something that would remind us where our boy came from.  Just because it was hard doesn't mean it should be forgotten.  It should be remembered, for sure.  Remembered and embraced.

The orphanage's name-sake
The other day I was cleaning out a much-neglected cabinet and I found a frame just begging to be revamped.  So I did.  And I used some orphanage leaves.  And some paper.  And some glue.  And practiced my Russian writing so it looked real good.  Or at least satisfactory.  And this is the end product.

I gave it a place of honor in our home - and I look at it every day, and just thank God for Carter's past, as well as his future.  Because God's got beautiful things in store for our little Ukrainian-American.

Beautiful things.



I've started reading.  Anyone that knows me, knows that I never finish my books.  I know - never say never.  But in this instance, I can pretty much use the word 'never'.

I have 3 books sitting next to me.  And I'm anxious to finish all of them.  I suppose I need to start them first.

Be patient with me - I'm a work in progress.

My nap time set up.  See?!  Books!
Anyhow...I just started Down Syndrome Parenting 101 by Natalie Hale.  Literally, just started it.  I think I'm 20 pages in.  I've already learned so much about our boy.  In 20 pages.  Whether you're like me - just in the beginning stages of learning your new child - or already have a few (or more) years under your're bound to learn something within these pages.

In other words, I highly recommend it.


And that's that.  A quick update from this little blogging mama.  Thanks for reading along.  I'm always surprised that you still come back to this little blog, to read what I have to say.

Thanks for sticking with me, friend.

One Thing I Know For Sure: Noon, and little boy is sleeping.  The next three hours will be bliss - nose a book, coffee in hand.  :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

World Down Syndrome Day

Today is a fun day in our house.  In lots of houses, I suppose.

Today is a day that we celebrate our little boy.  No, it's not his birthday.  Not a special anniversary.  Nope.

Today is World Down Syndrome Day.  Today is 3/21 - this day was chosen to symbolize the third copy of chromosome 21 in Trisomy 21, the most common form of Down syndrome.  

And our guy - well, he's got that somethin' extra.  More is better, right?!

The other night we gathered with a lot of families who are blessed to have kids with an extra chromosome.

Yep, I said blessed.

We met some really nice people.  People who get it.  People who have been there.  It was nice to just be.  Well - I should say 'just chase'.  Because that's pretty much what we did.  Carter enjoyed his freedom, that's for sure.

We had a minor meltdown about halfway through the night - because when you're used to doing nothing in an orphanage, and hanging out with mommy all day at home - well, this was a bit much.  We forget that he's only been home four months.

Also didn't help that a little boy took his car away.  We learned that aside from Down syndrome, Carter also has Only Child Syndrome.

We'll have to work on that.


There are so many myths about Down syndrome - do you know that people with Down syndrome can work, attend school, drive cars (seriously, Carter does this up & down the sidewalk every day...!), go to prom, and contribute to society in countless ways?

Don't limit my guy.  Don't tell me what he can't do - won't do - shouldn't do.

He can.  He will.  Amen & Hallelujah.


A common myth - people with Down syndrome are always happy.  We busted this myth last night, multiple times.

The proof is in the puddin'.....

Myth: Busted.


Okay, back on the happy train.

This is the first year that World Down Syndrome Day is officially recognized by the United Nations.  It's a global celebration, people.  

Because this is something worth celebrating.  People with Down syndrome should be valued.  Accepted.  Included.  

Definitely worth celebrating.

Kids with Down syndrome are often fully included in social & educational settings, and usually go on to graduate high school.  They can even attend postsecondary education programs.

Don't tell me he can't.  He can.  He will.

Celebrating it - believing it, today.

This is Jonathan, (20 months)....pushing Carter (almost 4).
This makes me laugh.  
The bottom line?  Celebrate Down syndrome today.  It's worth getting excited about.

Carter is worth it.  His pals are worth it.  These kids are worth it, too.  Don't forget about them, today.

And don't - please, don't tell me he can't.  He can.  He will.

He will.  

One Thing I Know For Sure: Thanking God for the beautiful gift of Down syndrome, today & every day.

Monday, March 19, 2012

No Secret Formulas

I've learned some things.  I did plenty of research on attachment before we left for Ukraine (like, absurd amounts...), but now that I've lived it for myself, I have some tips.

Take them for what they're worth. Disclaimer: I'm not an expert, doctor, or social worker.  I've only adopted and attached to one kid instead of 6 (Yes, some people have done this.  Go, them!), and I'd say Carter's attachment journey has been relatively smooth and uneventful.  But, at least take a second to read them...these have worked for us, and they might work for someone else.

{1}.  YUMMY.  Carter was capable of feeding himself finger food from the day we met him (although the orphanage said he had only eaten pureed food....ha).  However, instead of letting him feed himself, we've chosen to feed him.  Even now, after 4 months, I still usually feed him lunch, and Jake usually feeds him dinner.  Yes, even if it's an easy finger food.  Yes, even if our meal is sitting there getting cold.  Yes, even if people think I'm weird for feeding my almost 4 year old.  Right now, it's all about attaching.  And meeting one of his most basic needs is a great way to bond.

And while we're talking about feeding, we made sure that we were the ONLY ones feeding him.  Nobody else should be meeting that need.

{2}. SCRUB A DUB.  In our first weeks home, and even now, Jake or I regularly bring Carter in the shower with us.  Too much info?!  Sorry.  Anyone who has had a preemie knows how children benefit & bond with skin-to-skin contact.  Hard to do with a wiggly toddler - unless your in the tub or shower together (or a swimming pool, if you're blessed to live in a nice climate!).  Carter loves the water, so this has never been an issue for him...thank goodness.

If he's not in the shower with us, but instead just taking a bath...we still try to rub his back or make some kind of contact periodically throughout the bath.  Every little bit helps.

{3}.  READ TO ME.  In our first 2-3 weeks home, the thought of having Carter sit and read a book seemed ridiculous.  But once he was able to sit for 3-4 minutes at a time, we started plopping him on our laps and reading to him.  We found his favorites (quick rhyming books, for sure) and read them over & over & over.  What he doesn't realize is that while he's listening to his favorite story, he's also nestled on our laps, all snuggled in.  Instant bonding.

{4}. MOMMY & DADDY ONLY.  In our first months home, we've worked very hard to make sure that Carter is ONLY bonding to Jake & I.  We've had the mindset that any other bonding that takes place is interfering with his attachment to us.  It's been hard.  Really hard.  But don't give up - you'll be glad you stood your ground in the end.  Set guidelines and stick to them.  Do some research with things like feeding and changing, and talk to your guy about what some good guidelines would be for your situation.  Obviously if your child is going to day care, you can't say 'nobody holds our child but us' - but you could still say 'no snuggling/hugging/kissing'.  Figure out what works for you and go with it.

{5}. DISCIPLINE.  I know, it doesn't seem like something that would foster attachment.  In our situation, I really think it has helped.  Carter has developed a very strong willed personality.  We love that he knows what he wants and is willing to try to get it. means that we have to discipline him regularly.  Each child is drastically different, but Carter gets a hand tap.  And he doesn't like it very much.  But we immediately pick him up, comfort him, tell him he's okay, and when he's settled he can go back to playing.  Some may say we're confusing him by being the disciplinarian AND the comforter....but isn't it a parent's job to do both?  I think if you do it effectively, then it can be very successful.  And we are seeing that in Carter, for sure.  It really works to cover that discipline with love.

{6}. WAIT.  I've said it before here - but when you think your child is ready for something, wait a little longer.  School/therapy is one of those areas for Carter that we've chosen to wait.  We can't wait to get him into speech therapy, but we feel that right now his attachment is more important.  I've heard people say that kids should be home for one year before going to any type of school or therapy...and while I feel like that might be right for us, it may not be right for others.  I get that.  But what you need to understand is that in those first months that your child is home, you're still learning them.  Meaning - you don't really know them.  And if you don't really know them, how can you decide what is best for them?  Is it worth it to take the risk and just make a big guess?  Probably not.  Wait.  You'll be glad you did.

{7}.  QUIET DOWN.  This was hard for Jake & I, because like I've said before - we were goers.  But quieting down has great benefits - not only for your new child, but your entire family.  Going to Chuck-E-Cheese the week you get home would likely be a mistake.  Would you take a newborn there?  Probably not.  Just take some time to chill out.  Settle in.  Get used to being together as a family, learning each other.

{8}. SAY NO.  This is hard.  But you have to learn to tell people 'no'.  I hated telling that sweet man in church that he couldn't hold Carter.  This man had given financially toward our adoption, he had prayed for us every step of the way, he had encouraged us when we felt hopeless - and now he just wants to hold our kid, and we're telling him 'no'.  I felt like I absolutely crushed him.  Thankfully, he understood.

If you have your guidelines in place, and you expect them to work - you HAVE to learn to say no.  You can do it nicely, but you've got to speak up and be firm.  I explained to a friend at church (who had reached out to take him from me) why we weren't letting anyone hold him.  I was expecting a battle, but I was shocked when she apologized and said she completely understood.  If I had just passed him over, too afraid to say no, it would have become the 'norm' - and would have been really difficult to stop in the future.  It's not always this easy, and some people will need to be reminded over & over - but it's worth it.  Speak up for your child, and don't feel bad for doing it.

{9}. TOUCH.  Whenever you can, however you're able, touch your child.  This is definitely something they do NOT do in the orphanage.  I touch Carter's face, rub his arms, hold his hands....anything I can do to create that bond.  After bath, Jake gives him a lotion rub down (it's tough being Carter....).  When I'm talking to him, I touch him.  When I'm carrying him, I rub his back.  Now, I do it without realizing that I'm doing it.  It's habit.

{10}.  ROUTINE.  Carter knows, without a doubt, that his breakfast/playtime/bye-bye/lunch/dinner/bath/bedtime routines are the same  He knows what comes next, and will sign it for us in case we forget :)  Routine has built trust.  Carter trusts that we're going to care for him, and that we've created a safe & predictable place for him.  He's not anxiously wondering what comes next - he knows what is next, and trusts us to meet his needs.

That's what has worked for us.  Is it a perfect equation, the same for every child and family?!  Heck, no!  That's why attachment is so hard!  If one book could answer each problem for every family, there would be no attachment issues.  Ever.

But if you're still not sure about all this attachment stuff, you could check out these links.  They really helped us in researching all of this.

Ten Tips for the First Year of Placement by Deborah Gray


Are we totally attached?  No.  Not yet.  But we're really making some serious progress - especially in the last month or so.  Find out what works for you, and go with it.

One Thing I Know For Sure: We're getting there.  And that's good enough for me!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Month Four

It's hard for my little brain to believe that Carter has been home 4 months yesterday.  Pre-Ukraine, I remember reading this milestone, along with others, on family adoption blogs - and I would think that we might never be able to say 'Four Months Home'.  In the midst of all the paperwork and fundraising, a four month home blog post seemed light years away.

So - if you're in the trenches, buried under paperwork, or waiting for your travel date (which should have been announced weeks ago...), take heart.  You, too, will soon be celebrating months home with your child.  It will happen.

{Also check out month one, two, and three}


We've come to a very, very sad realization.  Our little baby Carter has turned into little boy Carter.  His chubby fingers are thinning out, his round little belly has become flatter, his baby cheeks no longer have the curve that they used to.  His legs are longer.  Arms are leaner.

It's happening.  Little boy is growing.

Four months ago, in the airport, he looks like such a baby to us.

{you can see more homecoming photos in the video from this post}
Now, he looks more mature.  Wiser, maybe?

Either way, he's changing.  And although we're so proud of our boy, we're missing those baby features already.

Baby Carter, gone.


With the change from baby to boy, we've noticed a great big personality.  He has a naughty laugh, now.  And he knows when to use it.  Mama said no?  Give the naughty laugh.  Unrolled all the garbage bags and spread them around the kitchen while mama was doing laundry?  Naughty laugh.  Tried to stick the remote control to the wall (because apparently, this should work) and watched it fall to the ground with batteries flying?  Yep, naughty laugh.

See?  Naughty laugh.
It's okay, though.  We're just happy to see some spunk.  Gumption.  Spirit.  Tenacity.  Guts.  True grit.  Moxie.

Our guy's got some serious moxie.


Something else has developed over the past few weeks.

Some days, it feels like we're raising a teenager.  He rolls his eyes.  He slams his bedroom door.

No, I'm not kidding.  I know it's purely coincidental, but it's pretty stinkin' hilarious.

See?  Eye roll.
Serious moxie.


Linking up with Rachel - join us!  It's lots of fun :)

friday favorite things | finding joy

Enjoy your weekend, friend.  Do something you love.  Kiss your kids more.  Go on a date.  Explore.  Finish that book.  Have a family movie night.  Sit on the couch eating bon bons in your jams.  Whatever.  Just enjoy it :)

One Thing I Know For Sure: Looking forward to a super enjoyable weekend...!

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Embracing It.

In just a few hours, we're going to do something that I'm so, so excited about.  It's something I've waited a long time to do.  

In a few hours, we'll be heading to the airport to welcome Caleb into his family for good.  And I can't wait to see that family all together.  Forever and ever.  And I'm sure I'll cry like a baby, because that's what Juli did at our homecoming :)  And I'm sure it will bring back all the emotions that we felt just a few months ago.  And I'm sure we'll get home way past bedtime.  But I just can't wait.  

Welcome home, Caleb.  Home for good.  Nothing better.  


My favorite part of the day has become the moments after nap, when Carter is just brushing away the last bits of sleepiness, and he becomes himself.'s funny, because a month ago, I wouldn't have known who 'himself' is.  But Carter has developed a true personality, completely his own.  It's really inexplainable.  Watching him go from a slightly unsure, quiet little boy to the blossoming, chatty, opinionated boy that is now running down the hall has been wild.  It really has been like peeling back the layers of an onion.  The hurt, the abandonment, the orphanage grime - it was all hiding this sweet little boy.  

I'm so glad he's him.  I'm so glad he's ours.  I'm just so glad.


This morning, Carter had an entire water park to himself.  Well - it was the ymca - and it was mostly to himself.  But regardless, he owned the place.

It took him a while to figure out that thing we kept calling the 'deep end'.  Until he got a face full of water, and then he got it.

Definitely looking into a pool pass for the summer...!


Since bringing Carter home, I've turned into a true mommy.  I love everything about being a mommy, except one thing.

Living in frumpville.

I struggle with this almost daily.  The balance between 'getting ready for the day' (which in my opinion, is vital for avoiding long term psychiatric care), and being uncomfortable all day just so I can say I wore real clothes.  I mean, really - does it matter that my shirt doesn't match my sweatpants (yes, I said sweatpants), or that after I showered I did absolutely nothing with my hair (...and by the time I see Jake's car pull up I rush to the bathroom to try to avoid looking like Frankensteins wife...)?

I rarely wear jeans or put on makeup unless I know I'm leaving the house for the day.  Is this normal?!

Everyone has 'that mommy' in their circle who is always put together - always looks fabulous - always has their sparkling personality in tow....well, that mommy is not me.  Anyhow - 'that mommy' happened to be outside when I drove by her house the other day.  As I saw her from a distance,  I secretly thought "HA!  I've got her!  I'm about to see her looking disheveled and frumpy, just like I do at home!  Finally!".

Well.  It didn't really happen like that.

She looked fabulous.  Adorable outfit.  Hair done.  She was wearing earrings, for cryin' out loud!  What mommy wears hoop earrings at home?!

If she wasn't so completely sweet and lovable, I might have tried to run her over with my car.

Okay, I would never do that.

But I did feel a tad bit jealous.  That's a feeling I really, really hate.  And suddenly, I was not only thinking about how cute she is, but how cute her house is, and how nice their vehicles are, and how pleasant her family is.....

Before you know it, I was seriously feelin' it.  The little bit of jealousy had turned to complete dissatisfaction with my own life.  See how that seed grew into a big old nasty weed?  Thankfully, in this area, I am a green thumb - and I was able to pull that weed out by the root before it took over the entire garden (although....I'm sure her garden is prettier than mine...okay, kidding).

So, the next time I'm feeling the need to wear the sweatpants without the holes in them, because I want to be more like 'that mommy', I'm tossing that seed to the wind.  And I'm embracing the hoodies.  And the mismatched socks (yes, I said mismatched socks).

Because it's about being all that I can be for little boy, and getting on the floor (comfortably!!), and being mommy.  And I'm not 'that mommy'.  And that's okay.  Because I'm his mommy.

*Disclaimer:  I have never, ever, ever gone out in public looking like Frankensteins wife, wearing holey sweatpants or mismatched socks.  I will never be that mom at Target that somehow left the house with her rubber ducky pajama pants on.  If that mom is you - I'm sorry.  I won't judge.  I'm sure it was just a really, really bad day.  But apparently you aren't 'that mommy' either.  And that's okay, honey.  Embrace it.

This is my favorite post from the week, so I'm linking up!  Join's fun!

friday favorite things | finding joy

One Thing I Know For Sure: Embracing the holey sweatpants, as I type this.  Because it's okay.

Monday, March 05, 2012


Writing randoms today, because I'm having a hard time focusing this little brain of mine.

I found this on the floor the other day.  

I knew you'd appreciate the humor in this.  I found out later that he spit out the piece of rind, because we found it by the back door.  Also funny?  The other day, Jake & I were talking in the living room when we heard the refrigerator open.  Obviously, we looked at each other, puzzled - because Carter has never tried to open it before.  A second later, he came running into the living room with a bag of two crescent rolls.

Alrighty, then.

Mama is planning a birthday party for this little boy.

It's a 4thst birthday party.  His 4th birthday - but 1st party.  4thst.  We think we're pretty clever.  The theme?  Chicka Chicka Boom Boom - little boy's favorite book.  Bright colors.  Letters.  Polka Dots.  It's going to be pretty great.

It will be a while before we can wear sandals in Wisconsin, but I can't wait to see his chubby little toes in a pair of flip flops.

Apparently, he can't wait either - because he's constantly whipping those socks off.  Little boy likes bare feet.

This is Carter's own, made-up sign for 'ni-night'.  Signing is going good.  We're amazed at the frequency that he has started using the signs.  He totally understands that those floppy signals that he does with his hands are a way to communicate with us.

Telling us he needs a diaper change is almost a regular occurrence, and he's even going on the potty almost nightly.  Notice the use of the word 'almost' :)  We'll get there.

I had a free day on Saturday :)  I went to a women's event at our church in the morning, afterwards I gave some much neglected roots a splash of color (hair, not plants), and in the evening I went to dinner and the Miss Oshkosh Pageant (way to go, Sam!) with my mom.

Jake and Carter had a much-needed boys day.  When I got home, way past bedtime, I was glad to see that they had survived the day.  Carter made it through great, and he only needed one band-aid (his first - I missed it...!), and although Jake looked thoroughly exhausted (welcome to my world, dude), he said they had a pretty great time.  I believe it.

I just learned, after almost 4 months, that the high chair liner clips onto the high chair.  Do you have any idea how its crookedness and sloppiness has bothered me?

I'm convinced someone is sneaking into my house at night and sprinkling bits of grass, sand, and extra Moses hair on the floors.  If it's you, please stop.

I've had an addiction to Gain fabric softener, until I noticed how much I was paying for it.  I also love the room spray and dish soap.  If they had a body wash, I would use that, too.  I have cut ties, though - and after two loads of laundry today I'm missing it much.

This May will mark 9 years since we graduated high school.  That means next year is the big 1-0.  Is anyone planning this?  Would anybody come if I planned it?  I don't know.  Do I need a task this big to throw my time/energy/life into?  We shall see.

I've been having some crazy dreams.  Auditioning for American Idol (which would be a huge joke...) and stressing about which song to pick.  Our AWANA Commander asking for prayer because he's struggling with his crocheting (seriously?!).  Wake up already, Ash.

I shot a wedding (likely my last...!) in January, and I just sent off the images to the bride & groom.  Yes, it took me a while - thankfully, they were totally understanding.  Carter had been sick on & off, and I had to tackle 3,000+ photos - three or four at a time.  Pre-parenthood, I could get them done in a weekend.  Oh how things change.

I'll leave you with this little face....

He's saying 'please grab my feet and pull me around on the floor, because I like that'.


Miscellany Monday @
lowercase letters

One Thing I Know For Sure:  Linking up with Carissa @ lowercase letters.  Wanna write some random stuff, and link up?  Do it!

Friday, March 02, 2012

Lost Found.

It has been an interesting week - so many things happening.  Good things.  Really, really good things.  I've been enjoying conversations with lots of mamas who are preparing to go rescue their babies.

"What kind of gifts should we get the nannies?!"

"Can I buy baby clothes in Kiev?!"

"What's the deal with boys wearing tights?!"

I love it.  I get so excited when I see a new email from one of these mamas.  Because a part of me is still in Ukraine - and when I get to talk about it, I feel like I'm back there.  I know, it seems crazy.  It's just a strange, unexplainable feeling.  Jake asked me the other night if I wanted to go back.  Yes.  Yes, yes, yes. Not now.  Maybe not to adopt.  

Oh, how I want to go back.


One of those mamas has been on an emotional roller coaster the past few days.  Originally, her family committed to a boy whom they have since found out is not available.  It stinks.  I'm sure the pain and frustration is unbearable.  

I talked about 'bridge babies' in this post.  We knew this was a possibility with Carter...but obviously, everything worked out for us.  

But sometimes it doesn't work out.  And sometimes, parents need to walk that wobbly, scary, rickety bridge from the child they thought was theirs, to the child that really is theirs.  

This family's bridge led them right to Berezka.  To Kiev.  To Carter's old home.   

This family has committed to bring home Chandler.  We think that Chandler is in Carter's groupa.  There's quite an age difference - so we're not certain.  Time will tell :)  

Chandler has a mommy & daddy working so hard to get to him.  Would you visit their blog?  Follow their journey?  I know I can't wait to see them there, holding this little boy in their arms.  

Pray.  Give.  This is what it's about, church!


In a few months, we'll be celebrating Carter's birthday.  I'm already planning - because planning is what I do :)  

Well, for an orphan - there are no birthdays.  There are no celebrations.  And that just breaks this mama's heart.  

You've seen sweet Lily here before - I've shown her photo and pointed you to this blog, where you can purchase really cute crocheted items, with 100% donated to Lily.  

The girls @ 'Handiwork for Lily' are having a little birthday shindig for Lily.  She may not know right now - but I hope that someday, she'll have a mama that can tell her all about it.  

A mama.  That's the goal for Lily.  Not to raise a few bucks, but to raise awareness - and hope that her mama might see her little face and fall in love.  

Visit the blog - and share it on your own blog.  I've said it before - you never, never know who is reading your blog...and you just don't know who Lily's mama might be.  


One more thing.  There is a sweet family in China right now who we happen to just love!  They are so, so close to bringing Caleb home for good.  If you haven't been following along, you need to at least go see his adorable face.  Really, he's a doll.  

You might also want to check out the photos that Juli posted from the foster home they visited.  Yes, she has pictures.  Of beautiful, precious kids.  Some of them are waiting for families...!  Maybe they're waiting for you?!  Go look - it's worth a peek, for sure.  


That's it for tonight.  Little boy is tucked in bed, and Jake and I are about to lounge on the couch with some ice cream.  

Hope your weekend is fabulous.  I'm looking forward to a mommy's day out tomorrow...!  

One Thing I Know For Sure: Don't be distracted by the fluff at the end of my post.  Pray.  Donate.  Share.  

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