Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Weeks 42 & 43 of 52

Another couple weeks done...been busy weeks getting ready for Halloween and just enjoying this time of year. I love living in the mountains during autumn...it is without a doubt a beautiful gift.

Week 42 of 52
2010: 10/15
Mickey has found a new favorite napping spot, he loves to jump up there after I've finished...nice and warm.
2010: 10/16
Annual trip to the pumpkin patch...I have more pix, I'll do them in a Halloween post. Mari actually rode the orange barrell train this year instead of freaking out...she has matured so much this year, come a long way in conquering her fears.
2010: 10/17
Mari has commandeered my Eeyore slippers.
2010: 10/18
I love this kid.
2010: 10/19
Mari wanted to practice cutting - something the kids in her new class can do and it really upset her that she was behind in this area, so we've been practicing.
Don't you love her hair here?
2010: 10/10
Sam and Mickey - rough life.
2010: 10/21
My nutso kiddo.

Week 43 of 52

2010: 10/22
Mari got to sleep in my bed for a few nights until we could investigate the attic over her room for scurrying critters (turns out it was just a heating tube expanding and contracting and scraping the floor - phew!).
2010: 10/23
The whole family went up on the mountains for an evening picnic and short hike to one of the mountain overlooks. It was a total coincidence that all 3 cousins had on half-zip fleeces....these 3 are so. much. fun. to see together. This picture totally makes me tear up (I have it as my desktop at work) - we posed them on the log but the facial expressions and interactions were just a continuation of the fun they were having playing in the leaves.
Next year there will be another cousin in this picture....shhhh.....
2010: 10/24
"Jack-O-Ween"
2010: 10/25
Loving this hairstyle, the diagonal parts really helped with some of the short pieces that we've damaged from overstyling.
2010: 10/26
Decided to try some yarn braids - if lucky, we will be able to get 4-6 weeks out of them. I'm a little worried about damaging the hair but they are supposed to do the opposite and actually protect the hair. Mari's hair needs a break from styling, so hopefully this will afford us some break time.
2010: 10/27
Still working on the braids. Mari is so AWESOME with getting her hair done, she doesn't mind a bit. Using this website for direction and tips.
2010: 10/28
Symbiotic relationship.


Stayed tuned....Halloween/Autumn post coming up soon. School post. Wedding post. Mari post. Hair post. Maybe I should do NaBloPoMo?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The child that I adopted is not my adopted child

Adopted is a verb (past-tense in this case). Adopted is not an adjective. My daughter was adopted. But she is not my adopted daughter. Are you following me here? Or are you sitting there going “huh, say what”?

My daughter was adopted. She was born to another woman who made the unselfish decision to allow her own flesh and blood to be raised and loved by another. I adopted Mari. We will always celebrate this act. The start of our family is amazing and while there is truly grief associated with what Mari has lost, we will always celebrate that our family started through the action of adoption.

My daughter is not an adjective. She is not my adopted daughter. She is my daughter.

What’s the difference?

My daughter will be always shaped by the start of her life. She has suffered some incredible losses, many which she will not comprehend until much later in life and may never come to terms with. Emotions, attachments, friendships, familial relationships - all will be influenced by the fact that she was transplanted into a family and culture that were not originally hers. There is no changing the fact that she was adopted and that this action will contribute to the person she becomes.

But she is not an adopted person. She is a person. She is not solely defined by the fact that she was adopted. The action of adoption did not make her a better person than she would have been and it did not make her less of a person than she would have been. She is very special because she is my daughter, not because she’s my adopted daughter.

I absolutely celebrate adoption and think it is the most wonderful event that has happened in my life. But I refuse to let it define my child and how she is viewed. I’m tired of her being introduced as “Jill’s adopted daughter” (not to mention that it’s a little bit obvious). I’m worried that one day she will grow up and think that the only reason she is special is because she was adopted.

Mari is special because she is super-intelligent, hilarious, engaging, charming, determined, passionate, and just plain awesome. Adoption did not make her special; it does not define who she is. It is one small chapter of her story and one that she may look back on with a sense of loss of her identity or that she may chose to celebrate as a rebirth. But she is so much more than just an adopted child. She is a normal, amazing child who just happened to be adopted.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Weeks 38, 39, 40, 41 of 52

Wow....don't think I've ever been a whole month behind. I've been saving pix, just haven't been taking the time to blog. There are so many posts I want to do....one about just us, one about the beautiful wedding we were in, one about our awesome vacation at the beach..... So, I'm going to try to keep up with the pix better so I can get back to regular blogging. This has been an interesting experiment doing this pic of the day.....I feel like there are a lot of little day-to-day stuff that I'd probably never have taken the time to write about. On the other hand, just the effort to keep up with the project has impacted my regular blogging for the worse. True, there have been more posts than normal but a lot less posts with any substance. Anywho.....

Week 38 of 52
2010: 09/17
Mari has discovered my old CD player. She is totally enthralled by it.
2010: 09/18
Mari has been asking for awhile to go on a boat ride with Uncle Todd - we were finally able to make this happen on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. Mari LOVED it!
2010: 09/19
Mastered the 5-strand braid! Love the way it looks and it's actually easier than a 4-strand braid. I think I'm at my dexterity-limit, though. And I've seen tutorials all the way up to 7 strands. I'm happy mastering up to 5!
2010: 09/20
I made a sweet little dress for Mari. I took home ec in eighth grade and I think I've made one thing since then. My mom used to make all my dresses (and all my doll's dresses) when I was a kid and I wanted to give it a try. I was very proud of myself!!
2010: 09/21
Sweet dreamer.
2010: 09/22
I find it amazing that Mari couldn't draw a smiley face just 2 months ago....she has come a long way. (And those are knee caps, BTW, just in case anyone needed to know)
2010: 09/23
This one is "Mari on a boat with Mr. Sun"

Week 39 of 52
2010: 09/24
Mari is "officially" 3.5 years old. She marked the milestone by being promoted to the Advanced Class at school....this is the class she'll be in until K (which is still 2 years away). She is so super smart, she blows me away - sometimes I forget she is only 3 and expect too much from her (but she reminds me quickly in her very much 3-year-old way!). I promised her SpiderMan stickers as her prize for moving up and she earned a tattoo from the machine at Wal-Mart for being a good shopper. Glad to finally find a bribe an incentive that only costs 25-50 cents.

2010: 09/25
"Mari and Mommy the Pirates" (hence the patches on our eyes)

2010: 09/26
Mari was putting on a puppet show with her animals. In this story (which I have on video), Mr. Moo eats Macaroni Penguin and then is reunited with his long-lost father, Goat.

2010: 09/27
Mari's first day in her new class. She was super excited....it was a huge adjustment. Major structure, major focus on education - but she did great.
2010: 09/28
I'm finding sewing to be very therapeutic and rewarding. I struggle with it because I'm not very visually adept, so piecing things together tends to lead to a lot of frustrations. I have to rip lots of seams out, restitch lots of things....but I still find it extremely enjoyable.
2010: 09/29
The castle that Mari built and wanted me to take a picture of....she was so proud of it, I let her leave it up all night instead of putting it away. It fell in the middle of the night and scared the holy smokes out of me!

2010: 09/30
Never good when your cats stand at full-alert for over 24 hours. Yes, we have mice. Yes, I'm completely grossily freaked out.
Week 40 of 52
2010: 10/01
Been having some gorgeous weather - Mari decided to give roller-skating another try.

2010: 10/02
We went to a local Oktoberfest celebration. Mari got to ride a little pony - she LOVED riding it, but freaked when they suggested she pet it on the head.

2010: 10/03
Trying out a new hairstyle....a veil pattern in a circular shape. Very cute and held up well.
2010: 10/04
I was trying to take a picture of this shirt (I was trying to describe the neckline to someone and thought a picture would explain it better) and Mari was being her silly self.

2010: 10/05
Happy Referral-versary!!!

2010: 10/06
Mis-Match Day at school. I think we did pretty good (please ignore the messy house in the background).

2010 2009: 10/07
Yup, had to go back in the archives, didn't have a picture this day (ooops!). This is Mari trying on some hand-me-down costumes last year....she refused to wear a costume. This year she is SUPER excited about wearing one.

Week 41 of 52
2010: 10/08
Our dear friend, Heather, got married this weekend and Mari and I were both honored to be in her wedding. This is Mari hanging out waiting on the rehearsal to get started. She got to pull the ring bearer down the aisle in a wagon, so she was thrilled with her flower girl job!!

2010: 10/09
Heather and Charles got married on a gorgeous autumn day in an absolutely beautiful wedding. I'll do a post with more pix later but here's one of me and my stunning flower girl daughter.

2010: 10/10
Mari's unbelieveable curls, 24 hours after twisting them in. LOVE THEM!
2010: 10/11
Mari hair.....well, it's big. Time for a LONG overdue trim. She got one. I always trim it myself cause I don't trust anyone else. It looks so much healthier now.

2010 2008: 10/12
Flashback a couple years. What a little cutie!!

2010: 10/13
When I put Mari to bed, there were only 2 stuffed animals in bed with her. Hmmmm....

2010: 10/14
Somewhere in here is a rocking Super Hero dress for Halloween. Hope I can find it!

Hope you enjoyed that LONG post!! Real posts coming soon.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Day Time Stood Still

Three years ago today, I received the most incredible phone call of my life. I waited for eternity 1/2 hour for an email to arrive. I remember clicking on the attached picture and turning away (I still had dial-up, *gasp*), waiting for the whole picture to pop on the screen, wanting to look at the whole picture all at once.

Then time stood still.......I gazed into those eyes forever.
October 5, 2007
I still gaze into those eyes, only now it's in person.
October 5, 2008
Those eyes are the most incredibly expressive eyes on the earth (helped out by a pair of amazingly expressive eyebrows)....so much emotion behind those chocolate gems.
October 5, 2009

I wish time stood still now....as you can see, it hasn't. As much as I'd love to just stop time again, I do love seeing this beautiful angel blossom and grow.
October 5, 2010
3 years. Wow!