Saturday, September 21, 2013

Just goofing around

Today was the laziest day we've had yet.  We meant to do a bunch of things today but all of us got up and honestly didn't feel like doing a thing.  So, we didn't.  I feel every once in awhile, you just need to rest.  I look around here and wonder what our social worker will think Monday.  Hopefully, tomorrow, we won't be as lazy.  I did manage to post a few things for sale to help clear our clutter and make a few dollars.  Hey, if it's just sitting and taking up space in a closet, time to let it go.  I know I could never be a hoarder.  It would truly drive me insane.  But, other than that, I did nothing.  And none of us felt guilty though now we all realize tomorrow we'll be working harder than ever to clean up, do laundry and get ready for surgery/ school week.  No biggie.  For now, thought I'd just share a few pics of the kids. 

 Ignore the mess in the closets but they were cleaning their rooms.  I just liked how Alyona was goofing off behind her when I took the picture.

Nik proudly holding up dental x-rays.  They are Summer's teeth.  Little One doing her own thing in the background.

My kids absolutely LOVE these shopping carts.  They have this one and a plastic one our friend bought us this year.  They literally use the two carts every single day.

Summer being goofy with the pool noodles.  Pool is closed now so they are finding other ways to entertain themselves.

More pics to come.  Answering emails on things i posted for sale so need to get back to that.  Tomorrow is a big day.  I have a daughter turning 18 years old.  More on that tomorrow as well!  I'm too young to have kids this old.  Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Dismantled and downsizing

More on happenings around here soon enough.  For now, need to catch up on a few bits here and there.  For quite some time, we had a broken down fridge.  We managed then w/ one fridge b/c just didn't have funds honestly to fix it at the time.  Must remember, we are in process of two adoptions.  Though not international, they still come w/ quite a few costs and we are doing all out of pocket.  In addition, start of school is hundreds of dollars, add in a a few normal living things and well, there you have it.  Survive w/ the one fridge.  That was an awesome idea until BOTH fridges went out and we had no choice.

This was the newer of the two fridges.  We cleaned it out and let it sit empty for some time.

This little piece cost us $234.  For this fridge.  Sad part is, we replaced SAME said piece about a 1.5 years ago!  Yep.  Repairman asked me "do you want to really repair it or just go buy a new fridge?"  Since I was feeling rather sarcastic that day & pretty miffed about replacing a not so old part on a Whirlpool fridge we bought not long ago, I replied with "well, since I don't have an extra two grand on me, I think I'll fix the fridge."  Guy took it in stride.  It was the control panel.  Our second one now.  Fridge originally was on clearance but brand new.  Originally, we paid $1700 a few short years ago.  sorry, but it should last way longer than that.  

So, both fridges got fixed.  Glad they're back online to be sure.  So, are we done w/ appliance trouble?  No.  Not by a long shot.  we've been having washing machine trouble but that's a given w/ the amount of use we put it through.  And, our dishwasher is dying a slow death.  However, this may have just sped it up ten fold:

We were cooking and turn around to see Max dismantling the dishwasher.  URGHH!!!  He put it back together but now it's a bit louder.  We knew what was wrong w/ it before.  Frustrating.  And, as of this evening, now it's not working at all.  But, there are plenty of dishwashers (aka children) in this house very capable.  We'll all take turns & it will just have to be that way for awhile.  No biggie. 

Another thing that's been bothersome lately is going to the grocery store.  I know many consumers may have not noticed but trust me, when you feed more than a few teams, you tend to notice.  LOL.  Packing is changing.  And not for the better.  We make a lot of things homemade.  Icing is one of those.

Here's a prime example of what I'm talking about.  Left side is my old box.  Right side, teh new one.  You can clearly see it's smaller.   But wait!  by how much?

8oz to 4oz.  Yeppers.  By half!  BTW, the price is the SAME!  Pay attention folks, it's happening all around you.  If you take notice, your bread bags are also very much reduced.  I know this b/c I could get a certain # of sandwiches out of one loaf.  So are the cheese slices if I recall.  These little things are adding up.  Think of all the things you buy.  I take notice b/c food is going faster in this home.  Well, part of that is how many teens I have.  But part is due to downsizing of products in the stores.  

Tonight was a lazy night.  We needed that for sure!  Next post will be on the school situations.  Ahh, the joys of public schooling again.  Yeh, not so much.  Tomorrow we wake up and clean & organize.  Many more posts this weekend. In a writing mood. 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

It's a Process

Getting a new prosthetic leg is indeed a process.  After the amputation, we have to allow ample time to heal so we get a good fit.  That was done.  So, an appointment was made and this time, he came to the house!  This was awesome on many levels.  Thought I'd take a couple shots.  Had many more but Little One kept standing in them.  She's another photo hog we have in the family.

Mr. Frank and Bojan obviously go way back and can joke around quite a bit.

Alyona just being Alyona.

Bojan getting ready to get casted.  This will be the casting for the liner that will be made.

Not a whole lot of steps involved in this process.

Messy process but gets the job done.  You could tell the stump was still sensitive but healed.

Kids watching and asking questions throughout.  Mr. Frank was more than kind enough to answer.

Excited because he knows this is the first step into getting his new leg.  Free of pain and able to walk on it.  That is the goal.

Doesn't look like much but this is the first step.  This casting mold will turn into a custom liner for him.  After, they'll cast again for the hard socket and form a check socket.  After the check socket is measured and remeasured, they'll get the final piece ready.  And, of course a foot.  He doesn't have to choose a knee type for this side so that's great.  More to come.  Just thought others may want to see the process as well.

Dentist Day & more

Today was busy.  I took the Littles to story time at a local church.  They weren't much into the story but definitely into the cookies afterwards.  Hey, I tried.  Went home, served lunch and starting picking up kids from school.  Warren met me at the house and we took 7 of the kids and the one I was babysitting to the dentist.  5 went back and Warren figured he'd leave to gas up the van.  So, I'm sitting just reading, and letting Little One and House guest play.  Little One comes out from behind the play area and lifts up her dress w/ blood dripping everywhere.  Lovely.  Just lovely.  Poor kids in the waiting room must of thought she'd been shot.  LOL.  As you know, she had her tube out yesterday.  Well, apparently she banged it on something.  Blood was much more dramatic a look than what it actually was.  Hole was still closed.  We were told to keep her not that active for three days.  Umm, okay.  Unless I sedate her, that may be humanly impossible.  No worries, it's still closed up.  Just needs more healing time.   I'm guessing tomorrow is going to be a no play day and watch movies type of day. 

Anyhow, only 1 kiddo had a cavity.  That would be Yana.  Dentist said though not her fault.  In Russia,her tooth never formed right.  So, created a hole in the tooth and no enamel.  He's going to fix it.  So 12 kids to the dentist and only 1 small issue.  Not bad.  Little One must stop sucking her finger ASAP.  Crossbite already.  Does not surprise me one bit.  She hopped right up though and did fine.  House guest was quite a bit more traumatized but they'll take it at her pace.  No cavities for either.  Little One was said to have good looking teeth.  House guest they will not rush as to get over her fear and trauma first.  Nice to have specialists that want to work w/ us.  This team has been w/ us since Max and Irina.  After the dentist, quick stop and home and then off to the court house to file some papers. 

Busy day but lots got done.  Another social worker coming to do PPR on Monday.  Final report for Logan, Reni and Summer.  Wahoo!!!  I've been busy for next week trying to sort what's what for Alyona's surgery.  One other thing I need to know from others who may have stayed at Duke Children's Hospital, does the hospital provide food for the person staying w/ patient or no?  Was curious b/c can not purchase food every meal.  And, since I'm going to be there four days, want to make sure I pack accordingly if I need to.  I know when I'd stay at Wakemed, parent w/ child got a meal too.  JUst making sure same protocol.  Those hospital salads/ pizza/ etc. add up otherwise.  Warren is staying home.  I'll be staying with Alyona since last big surgery Warren stayed with Bojan.  We take turns.  Plus, depends upon child request. Though, since Alyona is so mad at me this week, she may just change her mind.  I'm making her do school work and she's just not happy about that.  Well, need to go do some more planning.  Very busy week ahead.  Remember tomorrow folks...Ahoy ye Matey!!  It's Talk Like A  Pirate Day!  If you do that at Krispy Kreme, you get a free donut.  Dress like a pirate, you get a dozen free donuts!  We are highly considering going. 

Tired, talent and tube out

Today is Tuesday and has been a rather hectic day.  We had art class here this morning and Alyona finished her painting.  Can't wait to show it.  On the camera still.  This is the class that Nik truly misses.  He actually asks about painting still like he used to do in homeschool.  Well, right after class, I was feeding the Littles lunch and the phone rings.  My friend is here so I'm sure she could visibly see the anger on my face growing.  LOL.  School was calling.  Never good when they call you.  Keep in mind, we had a 1pm appt. time.  Needed to get little kids ready and go.  They wanted me to go pick up Nik.  Why?  Because he had bug bites.  Yes, you read that correctly folks...bug bites.  Interpreter said she couldn't get him to stop itching.  I find this surprising b/c later on, Reni (who's IN the same class as Nik) told me he wasn't itching at all in class.  Hmm.  I gave him benedryl yesterday and lotioned him up.  But, not much you can do for skeeter bites folks.  Sorry.  Nik is one of those people who easily welt up and look terrible.  Seriously, he looked like some NIH experiment gone bad.  Picture is actually in the camera b/c Nik wanted to see.  Legally, they can not make me come and get him b/c he has no fever but after a bit of back and forth you could easily tell by tone they wanted me to pick him up.  So, kind friend she is went to get him.  Forgot to inform her it's grandparents' day and parking lot would be packed.  I get a call from her later asking where to park.  Nik retrieval accomplished and he was very happy to be home. 

Nik in tow and Warren home now, we go to get Little One's g-tube taken out.  Very easy to do and she was so happy.  Nik was fascinated by it all of course.  Doc was great.  No issues thus far and shouldn't be any to come b/c it's already closed up.  Amazing really that it happens so quickly...the hole closing.  After tube was out, came home and then left again for bank for notarizing of docs.  That done so treated the little ones to Wendy's Frosties.  Yum!  The junior ones...small ones.  Nik must have thought he hit the jackpot.  LOL.  Came home and no time for court house.  Speech therapist came so worked w/ Nik.  Alyona, Reni, Summer and Little One left to watch a friend play soccer.  Still cleaning up from last night.  I was wondering if it was a full moon and sure enough, think I saw one. 

Last night.  Kids were wide awake.  Not sure if this was the day the talented trio painted nails or what.

Summer decided to paint the Littles' nails with dark blue nail polish.  Then, house guest decided she should paint the floor.  It does come off which is nice.

Anyhow, last night kids were wide awake.  Went in and saw little bloody hands.  Then Little One covers her face so I knew that was the guilty one.  We look around and glass is everywhere.  how just ONE light bulb from a lamp can shatter into so many tiny shards of glass, I'll never know.  Removed little ones and cleaned them up.  blood definitely looked way more than what it was.  Just tiny scratches.  We swept, vacuumed and swept vacuumed again.  And again.  Now, to top it off, I had emptied and sorted the entire wardrobe all over the floor that day.  So ALL of those had to be shaken and washed.  Simply insane for one light that was messed around with and knocked over.  Hence the name Chaos Manor.  Even at 9:30 at night. 

Needless to say, we're all very tired.  

Alex is still getting used to middle school schedule.  Lots of things going on at once around here as usual.  So, trying to get things done one by one.  Make plans.  We have many fun things planned in October.  But, first must get through September and all the happenings now.  Bit by bit, we will. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

Manic Monday

Really, where did the weekend go?!  It is truly Monday and I'm catching up on posts as usual.  I have one napping right now and another eating a late lunch.  Alyona is working on her spelling and journal.  After that, we'll do some math review together.  I know after her hospital stay, she'll be out of work for a week so in regards to school.  Want to get her doing a bit more this week to make up for that time in the future.  But, don't want to push it too much either.  So, quick bits for Monday:

  • Digby & Alaska still itch free thanks to Advantix
  • Alaska got out of hte choke chain today and had an outing all over the neighborhood
  • Social worker came today for Little One's PPR and also court visits for papers
  • Little One gets the g-tube out tomorrow.  She's beyond ecstatic and keeps reminding me
  • Both girls look terrible.  The mosquitoes have literally chewed them alive.  We've put bug spray, treat bites, etc.  Just looks horrible.  Summer looks the same as well.
  • Summer is much more delayed than any of our other children.  Separate post on that.
  • Trying to get Summer services in school.  Being evaluated.
  • Nik is struggling in school and hates it.  Rules that lack common sense have prevented him from going into self contained until testing further completed despite clear history & things in place previously.
  • Not liking public school, especially core cirriculum.
  • I really think homeschooling them was best.  
  • Alyona is hating school work.  She thinks homeschool should be sleeping in late & watching tv.  Ha!  Nope.  She knows better than that.  LOL.  Plus, know she'll be out of school for 2 weeks just to recover.  So, trying to get her a bit further along before surgery.
  • Art class is tomorrow.
  • Speech therapy all week.
  • FASD Support Group meeting this week.
  • Have a post brewing about whole rehoming saga that NBC did.  Oy!
  • Got a ton of organizing done this past weekend.
  • Trying to sell some things we have laying around the house.  (clearing the clutter!)
  • Too much to organize before surgery.
  • Need freezer meal ideas.
  • IEP planned for Logan for next week.  
  • Evals happening for Nik and Summer
  • Yana is enjoying ROTC
  • Dishwasher broken...again
  • Glad to have 2 fridges back again
  • One kid dating (shoot me now!)
  • Open House for elementary tomorrow
  • Going to file papers at court house tomorrow
  • Yana's b-day is this weekend
So, much, much more happening around here.  More to come.  Lots of things left to do this evening.  enjoy your night and I'll be back.  LOL.  

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Last Day at the Lake

Yesterday, was Saturday.  We went to Jordan Lake.  Not far from where we live and not expensive.  Just $6 to park and stay all day.  Has sand like a beach, picnic tables to eat at, lots of shade, etc.  Pleasant weather.  In the 70's!  Gorgeous day to be sure.  Many went with us.  Yana was at Campbell University for an ROTC event, Bojan was at a pig picking w/ a friend and their family, and Max was at home doing geometry.  The rest of us though went.  Had a great time.  Again, weather was simply perfect.

Alyona and Irina.  Irina relaxing before she went on a 1.5 mile hike w/ friends.

Warren pushing Nik on the swings.

Nik and Summer on the tire swing.  Well, not really a real tire.  LOL.

Just look how gorgeous it was that day!  Carolina blue skies.  Love it.

I love that my kids were sharing w/ others.  Summer is on w/ two other girls.  Nik was pushing.

Nik, Summer, Little One and House guest all got on at once while Warren pushed them.  I wished I would have recorded them b/c they were laughing their tails off.  Just having lots of fun.

Summer, thinking about a jump.

Nik could seriously live in the water.  He's like me in that respect.  I LOVE water.  Love it.

I know you can't see her yet, but I just couldn't share this.  I was yelling at them to hurry up and turn around & see this.  Loved it.  Summer was helping Little One put on her shoes.  They loved these shoes.  Found a stride rite place that went out of business.  Guessed sizes for summer and got them dead on.  LOL.  Guess after 12 kids you can guess the rate their feet will grow.  

They begged me for one last dip in the water.  I obliged.

This is one of my favorites.  Summer and Little One.  I know her backside is dirty from falling in the sand but still cute.  They just didn't want to leave.  they all knew this was the last swim of the year and I think that's why.

 Nik walking ahead of Dad and House guest.  Again, look at that sky!  It was just a really pleasant day.  Met some great folks and had wonderful food.  Who could ask for more.  We enjoyed our last bit of summer time. Soaked it all in to be sure.  Kids had a good time and we headed home.  Everyone slept on the way home.  Loved it.  Had pork chops for dinner and then all of us watched Lilo & Stitch.  

Today, we stayed home and cleaned all day.  Got organized too and felt good to do it.  Kids went to AWANAS at church this evening and had a good time.  I'm getting ready to go downstairs and finish some things up.  Many more posts to come.  I have been in a lot of shoulder pain lately.  Pulled both shoulders and can't lift them much.  Typing hurts so I've been sporadic on here.  Happened a few days ago.  And no idea how to be honest.  Symmetrical pain so something I lifted and guarantee it was 3 little ones.  So, time for some heat and rest and Candy Crush.  I finally tried that game everyone was talking about.  Now I know why I stayed away from it for so long.  And I'm only on level 39.  LOL.  More posts but again, I truly do hurt so need to rest this arm a bit more.