We are traveling!!! We heard last week that we had tentative dates to be in Hong Kong from November 3rd to the 8th and yesterday those dates were confirmed and we booked our flights to Hong Kong! Can you believe it? I think part of me has been having a hard time believing this was really going to happen, but it is! I am so happy and relieved. I feel like I have been holding my breath for the last year and a half and it is finally feeling very, very real. I slept so well last night for the first time in a while, just knowing that our trip was planned. We leave this coming Friday and will get there in time to have a day to rest and sight see and go to church before we meet Simon on Monday. I can't wait to see him and hold him and be his mom. Thank you for all the support and prayers and well wishes. We are feeling so excited and thankful and excited and really anxious. Six days until we are on our way!

In other news we threw ourselves a little Halloween party tonight since Taylor and I will be en route on the big day. The pictures of dinner are on Taylor's phone which probably means they will never make it onto the blog, but first we had pizza by spooky candle light with three ninjas and a princess-kitty. Second, we changed out of our costumes and into old T-shirts and carved these amazing pumpkins which we are very proud of. Now we are tired.

I ran so many errands today. My mind is kind of a constant buzz right now of things I want to do or remember before we leave, either to get us ready to meet Simon or to get the kids ready for a week without mom and dad. This is such an adventure and an exciting journey. I never imagined that we would do anything like this and I'm so thankful for this experience.

I will keep updating the blog, but won't be able to post pictures here of Simon until we finalize our adoption, which will be a few months after we get home. That's kind of rough. (just the rules for Hong Kong adoption) I am able to post pictures on a private group the I created on Facebook, so let me know if you are on Facebook and you'd like me to add you to that group!

Thanks for reading about our good news. Happy Halloween!


8 Year Old!

This girl is eight. (August 17th, so she's already pretty much got it down.) She got new roller blades for her birthday because she had already grown out of the ones she bought herself four months ago. She also got some pretty stellar presents from her brothers and sister, like a Magic 8 ball and panda bear earrings. To celebrate we had family over for cake and ice cream, and also went out to ice cream with Anna's good friend Alyssa.

What I want to remember about Anna from the past year....
  • She is so much fun to talk to--I'm so glad I have a girl to chat with!
  • She likes to tell me what she's thinking and surprises me with her profound thoughts about life. 
  • She is easy going, and I'm thankful for that over and over again when our family is going through changes or things get crazy.
  • She is funny and she works hard to be funny. She likes to laugh and make other people laugh.
  • She LOVES to tell stories and write stories.
  • She does a great job of helping me out in so many ways and has gotten especially good at helping Georgia and Charlie.
  • She helps take care of the chickens 
  • She makes delicious instant pudding and cheese quesadillas 
  • She loves her brothers and her sister and loved sharing a room with Georgia this past year.
  • She has been so anxious and excited to get baptized.
Happy Birthday Anna! We love you. 


The littlest

It's hard to be the littlest, sometimes, especially when your greatest desire is to be helpful and also in charge, and you are only two. Georgia's favorite phrase these days is "I help you!" (not a question) and she really, really means it so I try  to make dinner without her noticing, unless I'm in the mood for lots and lots of "help". She is getting grown up and tall and just becoming quite the big girl. She can say anything she wants and she talks about her cousin Violet all the time and spends a lot of time being a mommy to her baby dolls. She likes to avoid at all costs things like naps and bedtime and eating anything that resembles a balanced meal. She can make her older brothers and sister laugh and laugh when she decides to be really silly and she misses them when they are at school. She's does a very good job at being the littlest, and we love her.


Baptism Day

 On Saturday, September 6th Anna was baptized into our church by her dad. It was such a special day for our family and I'm so thankful to be this little girl's mom. She has such a pure, kind heart and I love watching her as she grows and faces challenges in her life. She is a sweetheart. We had a wonderful day with family and good friends.


Goings On

We have had a whirlwind summer! Sorry for the lack of posting! We are doing great, but have just had a crazy last couple of months. now school has started (sniff, sniff and hallelujah--mixed emotions. Summer was fun. My kids are awesome. So is a clean house.) and we are settling into a routine and feeling like life is calming down a little bit. Things have not been moving as quickly as we would like with our adoption, because what we would like is for us to get on the next flight to Hong Kong. We are really aching for our little Simon these days. The good news is we just heard that we are in the last stage of our adoption. We're now waiting for High Court Order from Hong Kong which is the last step before we can travel. We were told that we would hopefully receive High Court Order at the end of October, which means we'll hopefully travel in November. So a little more waiting. I told a new friend at church about our adoption yesterday and she said, "How great for you're family! How did you get so lucky!" That's how I feel! I can't believe that we will actually get to have this little boy come home with us and be part of our family forever. I know there will be challenges as he adjusts and we adjust and possible future challenges that I cannot even predict, but I'm so excited to be his mom and to watch Taylor be his Dad and to see him develop relationships with his brothers and sisters. At this point I am feeling so ready for any challenges because we have been waiting and waiting, and hoping for this little boy to the point that we love him and miss him even without really knowing him. So, please pray for us to be patient waiters and that it won't be too long till he is here. 

Here are a few pictures from recently. 

Naptime is back!

Charlie the preschooler

Max the first grader and Anna the third grader heading off together to their first day of school.

My helper

 Sea shell counting on mom's bed


Help yourself

Take a look. I found the sink like this and I was happy to note that I have successfully taught at least one of my children not to double dip when helping themselves to spoonfuls (10) of peanut butter. Good job mom. Also the spoons are in the sink, not on the cupboard, or still in the peanut butter jar, or on the couch. We're growing up around this house and becoming responsible. And last, I love that a measuring cup was used by the peanut butter eater when he/she ran out of spoons. Mmmmmmm.