First, read this short blog post by Donald Miller……..
This resonated with me. For various reasons, I tend to carry junk with me. Some of it is mine, some of it is not, but I still hang on to it. Or, it hangs on me, weighing me down, keeping me second guessing myself, my purpose, my passions. Time to stop it. (past time, actually)
Okay, next……this Dr. Seuss excerpt is a good follow up to the Donald Miller post!
You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go.
I picked a word for 2013 about 11 months ago…..it was “intentional.” I reread that post and was reminded that I don’t extend grace to myself easily. I’m not sure why, but I plan on continually working on that. I definitely don’t want my kids to think that’s okay…..to be hard on yourself, to think that you couldn’t possibly make a difference in the world, to carry junk around for years that doesn’t even matter and never did, to think that God could love you less. Don’t ever think that God could love you less.
These are a few pics from our day of walking along the river, where the Lantern Festival was held. The displays were beautiful!
Just a few shots of our day!
It is freezing in Mississippi! We’re bundled up like eskimos and I’m holding out for Sean to make the coffee.
My sweet Jacob turns 10 tomorrow! He is sooo excited and has been asking to open presents all weekend. We asked him what he wanted for his birthday dinner and he said either Chick Fil A or chicken noodle soup at home. He’s so demanding!
Julianna is doing really well. She’s settling into the family and calls herself the baby.
Caleb is dying for Thanksgiving dinner. I think it’s his favorite holiday because of the food;) He was so happy they had Thanksgiving lunch at school twice last week. He even had extra helpings since a lot of his friends don’t like school lunch;) Thankfully, he’s the least picky eater in the house!
I would update you on me or Sean but I know you don’t really care….I mean, you probably do, but…nahhhh–you don’t.
We had pictures made Saturday and they turned out really good, despite the freezing cold wind! Here’s a sneak peek…
Awwww, they are so cute!
A little more about Julianna…..
She is a very funny little girl, lots of personality, a daredevil, loves to play with her stroller and her kitchen, very independent, very strong willed, is picking up English quickly, loves her brothers and likes to yell for them across the house, prefers chopstick to forks, is a good eater, sleeps well and is quite the girly girl. She likes to help do chores, like wiping off the table, throwing things away, folding clothes, etc. She thinks she’s grown.;) She does not like being told no. She imitates us and it’s hilarious. She’s great at mimicking facial expressions.
The boys are doing soooo well with her. Jacob did get mad when I called her “J” because that’s his nickname and how’s he supposed to know who I’m talking to if I call her that!?! Oops. Good point, J. Caleb caters to her, which she loves. He gives her piggy back rides and plays with her a lot, so he’s probably the favorite right now:)
For those who like to know about actual adoption stuff, she is adjusting really well. She comes to me for comfort when she’s hurt or upset and if she needs something. She loves her Daddy and knows he’ll spin her around or play rough with her and she loves it. We’re having fewer meltdowns everyday and she seems really comfortable. She let Caleb push her in the stroller but was concerned that I wasn’t coming, so I stood on the porch and she was fine. She’s pretty social, but seems to know that we are her family and she sticks close to us when other people are around.
I had good intentions. I was going to blog while in Korea and keep everyone updated. But, I did not. I’m a big liar–sorry.
Our trip was good and a bit of a whirlwind. We enjoyed some sight seeing, new food and the first days as a family of 5. As you can imagine, we had a scared little girl, but she was trying hard to be brave. The boys were such a big help. They were able to play with her and make her feel more comfortable. The flight back was good, with a few meltdowns along the way, but nothing some shrimp crackers couldn’t fix!
We are doing really well. Julianna is finding her place in the family and the boys are loving her. Everyone knows that Jacob needs routine and people have asked how he is doing. He did great on the trip and is excited about having his sister home. It can be a little trying for him since she’s loud when he’s talking to us and he hates being interrupted! She’s still getting over jet lag, so our schedule is a little off still. He’s learning to be a big bro and he’s doing a great job. But overall, it’s just a matter of everyone getting used to everyone. Caleb loves playing with her and is a great big brother, which we already knew.
More about Julianna…..
She is stubborn and funny, smart and a major copycat. She mimics us like crazy and it’s hilarious. She sticks her bottom lip out when she’s acting like Sean and Caleb and makes dramatic faces when she’s acting like me. She’s adjusting well, sleeps well, eats well and is picking up English like a pro. Overall, she’s a pretty typical 3 year old, which means, I’m tired! We’ve had the normal behaviors that come with being brought into a new family that doesn’t speak your language, that looks and smells different, etc. After the first few days with us, she settled in a lot better and seems more comfortable. We see her personality come out more every day and she’s a little firecracker. She LOVES her stroller and her baby doll stroller. She pushes them around all day and thinks it’s hilarious when she sits in hers and tries to walk herself around in it. She loves to laugh and be silly, loves to fall down and roll around on the floor and she has the art of fake crying down pat!
So there ya go. Thanks for all of the prayers and sweet words during this crazy long process. Thank you for all of the gifts and cards and balloons and the “welcome home” well wishes! She is home and we couldn’t be happier!
We landed in Seoul Monday night after an easy flight. Just disregard the whole 15 hour flight time. The boys were super excited, the food was good, there were movies, and we were all seated together.
We ate fast food last night at Lotteria. (Maybe??) Sort of like McD’s, but with a Korean twist, like fried squid rings instead of fries! You know, like onion rings!;) Caleb was the only one who ordered that. He also was dying for street food, so we bought these fish cakes. They’re sweet, filled with red bean paste.
Jacob wanted one but couldn’t get past that filling! Who knows why they are fish shaped?!
It’s Tuesday morning here. We’ve all been awake for hours except Caleb. Which means he’ll be the only one worth anything later today.
We heard Miss J is having a going away party this afternoon! We’ll pick her up tomorrow, so let the praying begin! Or kick into overdrive. Caleb and Jacob are so ready for her to be with us!
We’re planning on going to Lotte World today and probably a little sightseeing. Right now, I’m just ready for breakfast since I’ve been up since 4. There’s a Starbucks closeby, but it doesn’t open until 10! (We do have a 7 11 at the bottom of our hotel, though.)
We’re leaving today!!! Thanks for all the well wishes–we’re all so excited and ready to time travel, as J says.
Leaving as 4….:)
Sooooo, if I was one of those really good mamas who are adopting, I could tell you exactly how long it was since we first started this crazy long process or how long we’ve been waiting, but, you know me too well. And anyway, none of that matters right now because we are GOING TO KOREA NEXT WEEK!!!!!!! Yahoooo!!! Yippee!!! Aahhhh!!! (picture me running around in a crazy circle right now, not gracefully, either) Next week! Next week! We’ll be leaving over the weekend and staying for about 9 days. FINALLY! I’ve waited so well, though.
We’ll keep you posted.
I would like to add that Caleb is so excited about visiting another country and trying new food, riding the subway….. while Jacob is concerned because he’ll miss Halloween. Because “I want candy AND to go get her!” LOVE them both.
The boys have been out of school the past 2 days and you would think it’s Christmas at our house. Our big activity was a trip to an indoor trampoline place.
Because that’s what trampoline pics look like!
We do not know a travel date and today has not been good for me regarding this really, really long wait. Really long. So, here’s to not taking it out on my family and hoping tomorrow is a better day.
Remember that time I wrote about being thankful while I waited? I need to do that again. The list is probably the same as before, too, but humor me.
Super creative Caleb
Sean being home
Seeing our girl
The beautiful fall weather
Scattered around family and friends
A good book
Hair dye (what??)