Thursday, November 28, 2013


In the spirit of Thanksgiving I want to mention some of the people in my life that I couldn't live without.
First of all... my precious family.  I can't imagine my life without any of these people.  It still amazes me daily how each one of them came into my life.  I love them so very much.
Daryle is a great husband to me and father to our boys.  There isn't anything he wouldn't do for them (or me either!)  Not every father takes every opportunity he can to coach whatever the latest sport is.  He is also very helpful when it comes to making a school project.  He is much more creative than I am!  The adoration goes both ways.  Can't you just feel the love here as they celebrate Dad's birthday??
I am so thankful that I have one year with both boys at school with me. Although I hardly ever see Travis I know he is there.  We had so much fun going to the Mother/Son Kickball game a few weeks ago together.  I can't imagine life without these two guys!
 I am thankful for freedom of choice.  I am thankful that I am able to give this little guy the freedom to choose his own style.  Every day his outfits give me a smile. He is an individual and I am thankful I am able to let him express that! (although some days are a little harder than others... lol)
 I am thankful for sports.  Although it can be very time consuming, I am so thankful that my boys are able to engage in team sports. There are so many benefits to playing on a team. I am thankful Travis has an outlet for his energy and has opportunities to shine on and off the field.
Now on to some special people who help make our lives that much better. I am thankful for my Mom,  aka Grammy.  She does so much for us, it is effortless for her.  Not only do I adore her, but my boys adore her too. She will play endless hours of Candy Land, Monopoly, and Chutes and Ladders with them.  Not to mention how many times a week she (and grandpa too) makes the 30 minute drive from her house to ours just to see her grandson's play baseball/football/soccer games or even attend a school function!
And then we have my Dad aka Grammy-Grandpa.  I love the example he shows not just by his words but by his actions.  He is extremely faithful, giving, loving, and loyal.  He has spent countless hours swimming with my boys in the pool... even though he might rather be inside watching the baseball game... just because they love swimming so much and he loves spending time with them.  They can always count on him to jump in for a swim... in the summer of course!
You know the expression, "It takes a village to raise a child??"  Well, that is SOOOO true!  I don't know how I would manage without my father-in-law Bill aka Red Truck Grandpa aka RT.  Honestly. Having him live down the street from us has made my life that much easier.  Not to mention the bonds he has formed with his grandsons.  He takes kids to school, picks them up, helps get them to various practices. He even makes sure they do their homework.  He is one reason why Travis usually gets 100% on his weekly spelling tests!
We can't forget Grandma Hawes aka California Grandma. The boys LOVE going to visit her (and her cats) every summer.  Whenever there is a holiday they know there will be something arriving in the mail from her.  She is so thoughtful, kind and generous to all of us.  Connor loves her house because he has his own bed... and grandma has STAIRS!  Travis loves going to California because he loves being around the cats (as well as grandma.)  Even though they don't see her as much, there is still a lot of love and mutual admiration going around here!
Who wouldn't be thankful for this cute face??  He adds a lot to our family. We love you Petey!
I am thankful for many, many more things. However, one thing in particular comes to mind today. I am thankful for the oceans of the world.  For me, the ocean is a beautiful, relaxing, mysterious and majestic place.  Whenever I am there I just can't help but think how big our world is. I always wonder what lands this water has seen before it stood at our feet.  It makes me think of Russia.  Clear on the other side of this endless vast of water lies the country that gave me my children. My life.  For that I am eternally thankful.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

National Adoption Awareness Month

Yep. This one pretty much sums it up.  Our lives wouldn't be the same without the blessing of adoption.  
I hope my boys are growing up feeling this way.  Because, well, it's the truth.

Pumpkins, Candy, and Costumes... Oh My!

Now that we are mid-way into November I guess I had better write about Halloween 2013.  Before we are overcome with turkeys and Christmas anyway!  Here are the boys with the pumpkins they each so lovingly picked out... not from an actual pumpkin patch...but from the great big bins outside the local grocery store. (Oh how I miss living in Memphis when we took the first graders out to an actual pumpkin patch to get pumpkins.  Oh well.... times do change!)  That didn't matter to them, they loved their pumpkins anyway.

 Cleaning out the "guts".
 Connor and Daddy designed their face first and this is what the end result was. Connor wanted his to have "tusks".
 Travis enjoys cleaning out the pumpkin...
 Travis and Dad designed this one too. 
 I think they both turned out pretty good! (That's because I stay out of this part.  I am not very creative or skilled in this area.)
 Thank goodness for grandmas.  Since one grandma lives in CA she offered to order the kids some cool costumes for Halloween. Travis chose a SWAT costume while Connor chose to be Rafael from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. He is obsessed with those turtles.  They both look so cute! Here they are ready to head out.
 And just in case you were wondering, my "other" Hawes boys dressed up too.  Say hello to Uncle Si and our newest inmate from the SF jail!  lol  Boy were they a sight!
As for me, I just sit outside and hand out candy. My traditional "costume" is my orange shirt and black pants.  I know, not very creative.  Dressing up isn't really my thing. I do enjoy seeing all of the costumes though.  We had a lot of kids but not as many has we have had in the past.  This year my mom and a friend joined me. The weather was great and the company was even better.  
Happy Halloween!