Saturday, May 29, 2010

This and That

Finally. We made it to summer vacation!! I am so excited to be able to spend the whole summer with both boys. No traveling out of the country. No adjusting to a new family member. No adoption paperwork (I spent the last 2 summers doing that!). Just time to do swim lessons, sports camps, summer movies and just have some down time. Next week I will start my summer school class for the next 4 weeks. I am sort of excited about it because I have heard wonderful things about the teacher. Also, it will be good for me to get a "break" two evenings a week from my precious, beautiful boys. I think I will be needing it!
Here they are, already preparing for football season. They are ALL BOY I tell you!
This week we celebrated Connor's first Gotcha Day. We met my mom and dad at Applebee's to commemorate the day. I can't believe it was a year ago already!
Gotcha Day also happened to be the last day of school. So it was Connor's last day at the sitter's. Of course since we had dinner plans this was the day Connor decided not to take a nap. He thought it would be so fun to take off his poopy diaper and smear it around the crib at the sitter's house instead of sleep. Wonderful. I think we will start the potty training this summer. Or else it is going to be a very, very, very LONG summer! LOL
Here are my boys, looking so angelic.
Here is our family of 4, exactly one year after the court officially named us Connor's parents. I read somewhere that GOTCHA Day stands for "God's Ordained This Child's Happy Adoption Day". Sounds perfect to me.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Connor's First "Gotcha Day!"

One year ago today Daryle and I sat in a court room in Moscow City and asked the judge to grant us permission to be Connor's parents. Lucky for all of us she said "YES!!" It was an awesome day. I just cannot believe how fast the past year has gone by. Connor is talking up a storm and is changing every day. He has brought such joy to our lives, we are so lucky to have him in our family.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Seventies Night

Last night Daryle, Travis and our friend John went to the Diamondback's game together. Every year they LOVE to attend 70's Night! This year Daryle got Travis to dress up and join in the action. They decided to tye die a shirt for Travis. They practiced on 3 different shirts, but they just didn't have that "this is the one!" factor. So, after much thought and deliberation Daryle got one of Travis' "free" D-backs t-shirts and they tie dyed that one. It turned out perfect! In fact, while they were at the game several people asked where they could buy one of those shirts. Too funny! (Perhaps this is an untapped market??) Yesterday morning Daryle decided that Travis needed some extra items to make his outfit complete. This is what he came up with:
Isn't he the cutest? Then dad said, "Oh no, now he needs a soul patch!"
Ta-da! Finished product!
Here is the trio ready for a fun night at the game. (Control your laughter!! LOL)

Travis got his picture taken at the game with Baxter, the team mascot. As you can see he was in costume as well.
They had so much fun. I guess as they walked around TONS of people stopped them and asked for pictures. There was a group of guys from New York who really liked their outfits. They all took pictures with Travis and then three different guys gave him $5 each. The kid made $15! We couldn't believe it! All in all the night was a huge success and I think they are already making plans for next year... lol

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

How do you wear you socks?

Last Saturday was the final game for the Muckdogs. Travis earned 3 stars (Daryle's great idea for rewarding the kids for good plays and sitting on their mats! I take no credit for that one!) Here he is showing off his hard earned stars. I will be happy to have my Saturdays back for awhile!
Meanwhile...this is where Connor spent most of his morning. Climbing. That is the talent he has perfected this week. Yep, you guessed it, he climbed out of his crib yesterday morning. I am not ready for that!! lol
This coming Saturday is 70's Night at the Diamondbacks. Daryle always dresses up and this time Travis wants to participate as well. So, they tie dyed some shirts. They had to do more than one to get the "perfect shirt". They are still working on it. Stay tuned for the final result.

Monday was not the best day. First, I got a call that our house in Memphis was being swarmed by termites. Well, after I called I told her it was probably flying ants. They always come this time of year. So, after agreeing to send out the exterminator I thought my day would be ok. About an hour after that I got a call from Connor's babysitter. I had told her I noticed a blister on his foot over the weekend and I was keeping an eye on it. Well, it popped and instead of oozing clear it oozed yellow. She called me right away. Given his history I called the dr to ask if this was normal. Of course they said to bring him in. So I did. Let me tell you, when I picked him up we looked at the blister and it looked just like a blister. By the time I got to the dr (about 30 min.) and took off his sock and band aid this is what we saw.
See that red line going up his foot? That is the infection spreading!! I couldn't believe it. It spread that fast. Thank goodness she called me when it popped. With any other child you might not think much of it, but with Connor you have to be so careful. He started an antibiotic and things are clearing up for him. I am still waiting to hear back from the dr, she tried to run a culture on it but there wasn't much there. We got a stronger medicine this time, thank goodness. With the band aid and medicine on his foot I put Connor to bed with socks on his feet to keep the band aid on. When I went to check on him this is what I found.
It seems they were learning about sock puppets that day so that is where he put his socks! I can't believe he fell asleep like this! Never a dull moment, that's for sure! So, how do you wear your socks??

Friday, May 14, 2010

Good Times

It has been so nice to be home every evening this week. In addition to being home, I didn't have any homework to do so it felt like I got to have more fun with my boys this week. I am starting to look forward to being home with them for the summer. If we can have smiles like this every day then things will be going well!
This week our neighbors sold the trampoline in their backyard. Well, my boys heard all of the commotion and they decided it was something they needed to check out. This is where I found them....
Yes, looking through a hole in the brick wall!! I have never taken one single picture from this area of our yard, it is a narrow strip between our house and the wall. You can see why I don't find many "photo op" moments here! LOL After grabbing my camera for a quick picture I told the boys they could come in the house and watch out the front window. They obliged, but I think they liked this view better!
This morning Connor found this hat in his closet. He wore it all day, except for nap time. I bought this ages ago for Travis and it hardly got any use. Connor loves to wear hats. If they fall off he puts them right back on. He is such a character! He is my "hat boy"! (Some would say that is a Hawes trait for sure!)
This afternoon the boys were coloring, peacefully, at the counter for about 15 minutes. I have to capture moments like this anytime they happen as proof to myself that YES we do have some nice,quiet, sharing moments at our house. LOL
And this is how we saw Connor for most of the day. How he can see anything with that hat on his head is beyond me!! He is just so cute I could squeeze him all day long! Oh, and whatever you do, don't touch that hat! I tired to straighten it out so the flag was centered and I thought he was going to throw a fit!! Just call him Mr. Independent.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Mother's Day

Boy how time flies. Just two years ago Daryle and I took a leap of faith and jumped on the adoption roller coaster ride for the second time. We just knew we had another child in Russia. Each day I look at Connor with amazement. He is such a blessing to our family. It is so exciting that tomorrow I will be able to celebrate Mother's Day with both of my children. On Friday I got my first ever homemade Mother's Day gift from Connor. (He has the best babysitter ever by the way! And yes, Travis made one for me years ago and of course I still have it and always will! Thanks Amber!) He was so proud of his flower pot filled with M&M's and Skittles (he kept wanting to eat them all!) and he colored it so nicely. I will treasure it forever. So then Travis decided to give me his gift he made at school. He even got to wrap it all by himself. I just had to take a picture, I just love his gift wrapping techniques!
I opened it and found this cute poem and flowers. On each cupcake wrapper was something Travis promised to do for me. They said clean, vacuum, bath. For bath I was told that meant he would give Connor a bath for me... by himself...I kindly thanked him for the thoughtfulness but assured him that Connor would be taking his bath with adult supervision. He was ok with that. Phew.
He was so funny. He had to vacuum right away, no time to lose! He actually did a pretty good job too. He is a great helper! That was an awesome gift too!
For so many years I longed to be a "Mom" or "Mommy" or "Mama" to somebody. I can remember the last two or three years before finally having Travis home I would get sort of depressed about it. It was especially hard at church when they would ask all of the Mom's to stand for a special blessing at the end of Mass. I would just sit there. Sometimes I would get teary eyed too. So now every year on this day I say special prayers for other women who are in the same shoes I was in. I pray for the people who are going through things like infertility, adoption, miscarriage, etc. etc. Those are feelings you just never forget completely, they are ingrained in you. I also pray for all of the other moms out there, especially those who have made the choice to put their children up for adoption because they know it is what will be the best for the child. I get to celebrate Mother's Day because of two woman who made that difficult life altering decision. I wonder how often they think about the sons they gave up for adoption. I hope they have comfort and peace in their hearts and know that they are very much loved, are thriving, and are growing up in a family who would do anything for them and who loves them unconditionally. I will be forever grateful to these women for loving these boys so much that they made the choice to give them a family who could provide a loving home for them. It is because of these women that two little boys now call me "Mommy" and in turn they have a Mommy to hold them and love them forever. I hope I can raise my boys to eventually understand the ultimate sacrifice that was made for them from the moment they were born. I know in my heart that it was pure destiny. They were always meant to be our children. How can you look at these two little smiles and not know that??
Happy Mother's Day!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Misc. Things

I found some new pictures that I guess I forgot about! The night before Uncle Rob left to go back to Seattle Travis decided to call him up and request him to come visit before bedtime. Since Uncle Rob is such a great guy he obliged. Here are the boys with their Uncle just before bedtime. They enjoyed having him over and getting him all to themselves for a few hours!
This is where Connor prefers to sit and eat from now on. I have been letting him eat his breakfast there, and in this picture he was eating lunch on a weekend. However, he still sits in his highchair for dinner. I have his booster chair all set up at the table, but he doesn't want to sit there. When he sits at the counter he looks like such a BIG kid! I can't believe he will be 2 in just 6 short weeks!
Here are the boys with their beloved dog. Rock is so good with them. I can't believe how big Travis looks in this picture, he is growing up so fast!
Connor was home sick today because he has been running a fever all weekend. Of course he woke up this morning feeling better. I still took him to the dr to have him checked out. I guess it was a virus. So, I just put him down for his nap and went to check on him. This is what I saw.

The bad part, the part where I don't get my "Mother of the Year Award" was when he woke up 15 minutes later screaming in pain. Apparently this little leg was actually stuck! I pulled and pulled and was about 60 seconds away from either calling 911 or getting out a saw. Fortunately for us both I got it out. Phew. Another catastrophe averted.

Saturday, May 1, 2010


I just noticed that I haven't updated in awhile. We have been quite busy around here, as usual. The class I am taking right now has been very demanding and is sucking every free moment away from me. Each week I have had a 6-8 page research paper due. This week I have to add a PowerPoint presentation to the regularly scheduled paper. Plus I had to write a ficticious letter to a prospective Student Teacher giving them advice. Hmm. Sort of hard to keep it positive given all the cutbacks we are facing right now. (By the way, if you live in Arizona please consider voting YES on Prop. 100! Students and teachers will thank you. So will police officers, etc, etc.) Housework has gone by the wayside as I struggle to keep my head above water. To make things even more eventful around here Connor woke up with a slight fever. By his nap time it had climbed to 101.8. I gave him Tylenol and he woke up very sweaty as if the fever broke. No such luck. By bedtime it was 102.6. Poor baby. At least he is able to sleep, for now anyway. I think the strange part is that I have no idea what is wrong. He isn't coughing or anything. If I had to place a bet I would say it could be another ear infection. Time will tell. Just another day in our house.

On a positive note, after Wednesday I will be finished with classes until June. After this I only have 3 more classes and then in December I will be D.O.N.E. DONE!!! I am so looking forward to that day. Do you think NAU will give me any special honors or recognition for completing this straight through while also adopting my son from Russia, adjusting to life with a new family member, enduring my children's medical issues plus parenting a strong willed 7 year old and teaching all day?? Just asking.