Monday, December 14, 2009

Playing catch up; status update

Okay, so the blog took a little hiatis.  Sorry about that.  When you're under the weather and a mom, you don't get any breaks--LOL.  Feeling much, much better now and not sure if it was a virus or some type of severe food allergy reaction.  Crazy stuff.  Haven't been that sick for almost 11 years!  Yikes.  As always though, life goes on. 

On the adoption front.  Not much new news here.  Just got the revised fee schedules for the new kiddos.  Definitely need to kick the fundraising up a notch & into high gear.  I know it is near Christmas so that will be near impossible.  But, I'm up to a challenge.  As Michael Jordan has said:  "I can accept failure, however I can not accept not trying."  So true.  Where there's a will there's a way.  Anyhow, getting stuff accomplished slowly.  I had my medical checkup today.  For those new to adoption journeys, this is all part of the process.  Though it was scheduled anyhow, it serves more than one purpose this go around.  See, in order to adopt, you have to prove you are medically healthy & mentally healthy.  Ridiculous, I know.  I see it to a point but the rigorious screening we adoptive parents go through is more tense than a CIA questioning session.  If just half the parents had to go through this screening process & gather docs like we do, I think they'd think twice--LOL.  Was extra nice to doc as I handed her forms for 9 members of our family to be filled out by her w/ all our medical history on it.  Thank God we have a wonderful doctors at Wake Urgent Care & that they know our kids inside & out.  Yes, even the one that can't feel pain & comes to them w/ a nail in her knee!  They are very accomodating & when you have children w/special needs, you need that indeed.  My kids know every part of that building sad to say.  They know the "trauma room" and the regular appt. room and the sick room and the x-ray room.  Yes, they've been to them all.  We also see many specialists as well every so often.  4 of my kids go to a neurologist, a 5th will soon.  2 of the new kids coming will have to go to a neurologist as well but not for FAS.  We pretty much have every specialist covered.  Not as bad as it sounds b/c all our kids are stable & only have to go every few months.  Plus, since multiples go, we can schedule all at once.  At the dentist, we have them spilt 2 of 5.  We'll do 5 & 5 when the new ones come home.  Just keeps it easier that way.  Gee whiz, off on a tangent. 

So, adoption status update.  Yes, still adopting 3 kids.  Yes, we are still sane.  Yes, medical forms are in to doctors.  Yes, homestudy app is in the mail!  Registration stuff being filled out today & tomorrow.  Slowly but steady stears the ship.  Our biggest obstacle right now is honestly finances.  So please, please do pass this site along.  I will also be doing gift card drawings  this week as fundraisers.  Stay tuned for that one!  First and foremost though is if anyone would like to buy magazines for a gift or for themselves for that matter, do send them here & have them click on the right-hand sided link.  Takes you right there to our page.  Great shopping for sure.  More fundraisers to come after the first of the year.  But before Christmas, we will do a giftcard one this week!  So, if you need to shop, that would be a great gift to give.  Now we have a ways to go but I figure we're not far from our first thousand.  And for having an emergency appendectomy happen, some normal kid stuff, and a sick mom this past week, we're not doing so bad.  So, here's the tally:

Magazine Fundraiser:  $20(our part of it)
Yardsale:                       $316
Donation Bar:               $  50
Private donations         $225
Selling things:               $  70
Leftover PPR:                $125

Grand total:                   $806!!!

We are that much closer to getting the kids home.  Now, 2 of the children have a $10,000 grant with them which helps immensely.  However, we are still way, way far away from the $30,000 needed total to bring them home.  So $20,000 away really.  We will be applying for some grants but there is absolutely NO guarantee that we would even get one.  So all this has to be done on a total leap of faith that the money will come from fundraising and such.  I know we can do it.  As I explained in a previous post, adoption costs are much different nowadays and you can't borrow money like you used to.  Any suggestions or ideas, I am all ears.  One kind sir has offered his travel frequent flyer miles to us for trip one.  He said it should be enough for 2 international round trip tickets.  what a blessing!!!  If it all works out.  Some fo those transfer of points are tricky.  But, we'll do what we have to to make it work.  I know there is a Holiday Inn and a Hilton Inn in Sophia where we will have to stay part of the time.  Just very few nights.  Some business travellers I know get points to these hotels & if you don't use them, well,we'd love to have them.  Just get in touch.  Every little bit helps to save on trips.  So, that is basically where we are.  Need to fundraise, need to fill out papers.  The beginning stages of adoption process are SO boring.  Worth it, but indeed boring.  Keep you posted.  I do promise a Max transformation soon and one post about alphabet soup (dx's).  Also, I may just add pics for fun.  Love to show off the kids here & there.  Oh, and just wait till Christmas time!  I'm a picture hound and since we're not going to be here, they'll be tons of pictures.  Okay, so I can't wait.  Just a few random pics for now:

This is Irina.  She was our first child home, over 10 years ago!  Boy, did we ever have a lot to learn back then.  She has grown into a beautiful young lady that is going to surpass the expectations that were given to her years ago.  Very proud of that.  She has FAS, she knows it but has made peace with it.  Though sometimes she does still ask questions of why me.  That is normal.  Best part is as of recently, she has found a wonderful friend via pen pal that also has FAS and lives in CA.  They have even called each other!  My first born, my oldest, is turning 17 in just 13 short days.  I don't know whether to be happy or cry.  Just seemed like she was so little yesterday.  Came home only wearing a 2T.   Now, she wears a small ladies' size.  I blinked and she grew up.  Enough blinking.

This is Alex helping w/t he leaves.  We live on a very wooded lot.  Always leaves.  He is 9 years old now and will have a sibling this year that is the same age as him.  He is SO excited!  I do think they will be two peas in a pod.  Alex has so much energy and spunk.  He too has overcome so much in his young life.  To think, someone just left this little boy for dead is unbearable.  He does not know any of  his history yet.  Too young.  We are very selective of what we tell our children and when.  Fine line adoptive parents walk sometimes.  Alex has blonde hair, blue eyes and literally a following of girls in 3rd grade!  Yep, we're in trouble when high school gets here.

This is Alyona.  One of our 10 yo's.  She is anxiously awaiting the arrival of some new female siblings.  She has two teenage sisters who are way past her level of play.  the new sibs coming home will definitely be a welcomed addition for her.  She loves playing w/ the 2yo & 3yo across the street so I'm sure will love playing w/ the 2yo coming home.  (3 by the time home).  Alyona is our girlie girl still.  Her nickname here is Minnie Mouse.  She has  a very high squeaky voice and is just really tiny for her age.  She usually has her hair up in pigtails or a ponytail.

Can you just feel the excitement of this picture?!  Okay, we'd rather have a real tree but this year, no.  Trying to save some extra funds of course.  What most of you don't know is I used to work in a florist shop & interior design shop.  Well, we'd get things 75% off the wholesale price.  Yep, I used to ahve a 10.5 foot tree just gorgeous.  I mean, it retailed for over $700 in the store.  I paid $75 for it.  Yes, a bargin hunter I am.  LOL.  Anyway, 2 years ago, the water heater burst, ALL our boxes, Christmas stuff, etc. was totally destroyed.  We do not have nearly what we used to have.  We bought another tree last year but it is 9.5 ' tall & not like the other.  Yes, I was spoiled.  So, decorations are still slim around the house but next year should rapidly pickup.  Kids & I go yardsaling here and usually can find a bunch of ornaments.  Cool ones at that.  And, in Feb. here, TJ Maxx will have everything 90% off.  Told thekids we'd add some stuff this year b/c all ours still smells like mold what we had salvaged.  so, after this season, it is all being thrown away.  Sad, but has to be done.  Still, kids have fun with it this year.   We try to add every year to our collection of Christmas stuff b/c we love decorating for Christmas.  Well, we were all in Big Lots the other day.  That's where we get our bread from.  $1.20 per loaf.  Use 40 loaves a month & better than paying $2.50 a loaf or more.  So, what do we put in the cart?  Is it a classical nativity scene?  No,we have 2 beautiful ones actually.  Is it a light up reindeer that mom wanted for the front yard?  No.  What is it?  I'm frankly embarrassedto even say it on here.  It has Frosty & Santa around a campfire.  My BOYS have cracked up non-stop w/ this thing.  Can any of you guess what Santa is doing to the campfire?  Why on earth we have this thing is still beyond me.  But being that there was only 1 left ehre, apparently, a popular item.  Everyone that has seen it has just about fell over laughing.  Not one of our prouder purchases but definitley one of those that provides non-stop laughter and conversation.  Everyone has to have at least one tacky Christmas decoration, right???

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