Thursday, May 22, 2008

An Ordinary Wednesday

I read about the death of Steven and Mary Beth Chapman's daughter Maria today with a heavy heart and few tears.  Even though I do not know the family personally, I grew up listening to SCC's music.  He is one of my, and Mark's, all-time favorite musicians.  Just two months ago we celebrated our fifth anniversary by spending the evening volunteering at the Shaohannah's Hope booth, helping raise funds for grants given to adopting families, during his most recent concert tour.  Along with our friends Allison and David, we worked first and then enjoyed the second half of an awesome concert.  We have been listening to his new CD practically nonstop.  I also feel a bit of a connection, a red thread, with their family since they adopted three of their daughters from China.  They even have worked with the same agency we are using to facilitate our adoption.  

Maria was their youngest child, only five years old.  Her death was the result of an accident, one of those sudden tragedies that leave all who loved her broken and breathless, reeling from sudden grief.  I must admit that after reading this article, my mind and heart immediately flew back to many of the things my sister, her husband, and the rest of our family experienced when Natalie's accident, and death, took place last fall.  The memories are vivid and painful, and I can imagine rather clearly the shock and grief the Chapman family is experiencing today. 

 For them, it was an ordinary Wednesday afternoon: the end of the school day, plans underway for supper, kids outside playing.  For our family, it was an ordinary Wednesday as well.  We had just finished supper when we got the call.  In an instant, everything changes.  Tonight, I am wishing I could hold all of my loved ones a little tighter, a little closer, for only the Lord knows how many moments we are given.  

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

I Wasn't Expecting to Do This on an Ordinary Sunday Afternoon

First:  I'm over the plague!  Finally.  And feeling much better, thank you.   Other than still not really being able to taste most food, for some reason.  Which I doubt contributed to my 3 pound loss at WW this week (yay!!  At last, I am a loser), since I still manage to eat plenty, but hey, if I can eat Cook-Out, Chick-Fil-A, and Brusters Ice Cream and still lose weight, I'll take it!!

And now for the BIG news.   Look at my new wheels (!):

I have a new Hyundai Santa Fe.  It's Slate Blue and very pretty, easy to drive, and so much bigger than the sweet little Honda Civic I've driven for almost 9 years.  I'm still getting used to driving up high, instead of low to the ground.  And I am still a little in shock that we bought a (gasp!) SUV.  Yes, I know how ridiculous gas prices are these days.  But my Honda has had major problems over the last few months.  Due to a number of things, we had sunk a lot of money into car repairs and we weren't done yet.   Both of our cars are aging, and we knew that someday soon we'd need to replace at least one.  Plus, we wanted a bigger car to hold more gear, and someday a car seat.    Mark wasn't overly crazy about getting a minivan, so we decided to look at a small, reasonably gas-efficient SUV.   

On Sunday after church we decided to just go and browse the cars at the dealership.  Mark and I test drove this one, and we agreed that it was a great car.  The dealership gave us a good deal on the trade, and the monthly payments fit in our budget.  Suddenly, we were on the verge of buying a new car.  So-- yesterday-- we signed the paperwork, and drove it home.  I loved my little Honda so much, but I miss it less and less as I drive my new toy.  (Somehow it has already become my car even though we both bought it.)

From this:

To this:  

BTW...  Does anyone know how to rotate pictures on Blogger?  

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


I have been struck with the plague.  After 2 days on antibiotics, my fever has risen and congestion has worsened.  Will return when I am feeling much better.  At least I have time to clean out my DVR list.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Want to get $25 for free?

I know it sounds too good to be true, but it's not!   Revolution Money Exchange is a PayPal-type program that allows you to transfer money online.  Just for signing up you get $25.00-- no catch!!  All you do is take a few minutes to sign up.  

 Honestly, I thought it was an Internet scam, until I read that Crystal over at Biblical Womanhood got a check for $500 the other day.  For real.  She signed up for an account through Revolution Money Exchange, and also referred many friends to this program through her blog.  Everyone who signed up through her blog button got their $25, and she got another $10 per friend.  

Wow! It's hard to beat a deal like that.  Heaven knows we could use an extra $25, what with weddings and car repairs and adoptions, all of which cost plenty o'dough.  No pressure at all here, but if you sign up through me, I'd be pretty excited!  This is a win-win for everyone!

But HURRY if you want to cash in-- this deal ends May 15!!  All you need to do is click on the button below:

Refer A Friend using Revolution Money Exchange

Still skeptical?  Read this.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

WFMW: Cheap fix!

This week WFMW is a special themed edition:  What Doesn't Work for Me.  For me? What doesn't work is overpaying for ridiculously overpriced computer accessories (or anything that is not clothing, or shoes.  Those, I will spend on.).  

I am well known as a total klutz to my family and friends.  Recently, I lived up to my reputation by knocking into and tripping over the power adapter for my beloved MacBook, which was plugged into the wall.  Naturally, the plug was broken but not a total loss, so I tried to nurse it along by oh-so-carefully putting the plug and the cover back together every time I used the laptop and plugged in the power cord.  This sort of worked for about a week.  I realized I had to get a new power adapter before I zapped myself.  

I got a nasty surprise on the Apple web site, though, when I went to see how much they cost:  $79.00.  There was no way I was going to pay that much.  So, I went to Wal-Mart, bought a $3.00 roll of electrical tape, and had DH tape it up.  It's not pretty at all, (actually it's rather tacky)  but it's a cheap fix, and that's what works for me!  

Go to Rocks in My Dryer for more WFMW tips!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Pity Party

Yesterday marked 16 months since we were logged in with the CCAA in China.  There are 358 LIDs ahead of us, and the CCAA has referred only 72 days in the last year (since May 1, 2007).  So, the wait ahead of us (and the math involved in figuring it out) is too long to contemplate.  We just keep hoping not too much will change in our lives or China's program before our turn comes.  This month also marks 2 years since we began the adoption process.  Will it be two more?  Three more?  God only knows.  This was not an anniversary I wanted to celebrate with empty arms.  

Yesterday, we got some other disappointing news.  Not anything I can share, not life-altering, just disappointing. 

I gained this week on Weight Watchers.  

Sunday is Mother's Day.  A difficult day for me personally, although I love being able to tell my mom, Mamapa, and my mother-in-law how much I love them.  And my sister, who is an awesome mom.  I did mail off the presents today-- a small triumph since I am almost never this organized when it comes to giving gifts.  I'm ready for next Monday to be here though.  Someone on one of my online adoption forums said she and her husband were having Mother's Day lunch at Hooters, so it's not so "in their face".  I'm not sure that I would go there (literally or figuratively) but I totally get where she is coming from.  

Last week, a beloved teacher at the school where I teach died very suddenly.  It's been a tough week for the staff and students.  She is greatly missed, and there is still much grieving both in and out of class.  

Another friend e-mailed me and shared about a recent loss in her life, which broke my heart for her.  

Tough stuff.

I have so many blessings, and I do count them, but sometimes they seem overshadowed by the hard things.  As Anne of Green Gables would say-- a Jonah day.  Or week, in my case.  I'm sure things'll look better in the morning.  

Ok, party over.