Monday, September 28, 2009

The Apple Orchard!

Our playgroup had an outing to the Apple Orchard last week. It just so happened to fall on Katie's birthday so she (and her boyfriend) came with us. The weather has been unusually perfect UNTIL that day. We got some much needed rain but it put a damper on all the other activities that were available at this awesome apple orchard!

They had chickens, goats and pony rides. There was a hayride, huge corn maze, mini maze for the little ones, apple picking, a restaurant that serves lunch and all sorts of apple treat!! Sarah was excited to pick apples but we ended up not going out to the orchards because of the rain. We may try to come again next week or it will have to wait until next year?

Anna was not very adventurous in the rain. She clung to Devan - BTW have you met Anna's new boyfriend. He is supposed to be Katie's boyfriend BUT Anna is trying to steal him! After awhile I gave the poor guy a break and made her walk!

Queen of the haystacks!

Two happy daughters and one who doesn't understand why she has to walk! And why on earth she would ever need to pose for pictures! And TRY to look happy!

This place is so cute both inside and out! It was fun just being there even with the rain!

They have an adorable store inside!

We bought apples, caramel, whipped honey, homemade strawberry rhubarb jam, pumpkin bread, apple crisp and more! It was delightful!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Girls and their Hair!

When we found out the child #5 was a boy I went straight home and started fixing Katie's hair! I knew I hadn't done a very good job with it so far and thought maybe girl#2 would help us get into it a little more but then we found out their would not be a girl #2. Some Mom's are such naturals with hair - a friend of mine had 3 girls and their hair was fixed perfectly ... all the time!

Anna came to us with a buzz cut that was beginning to grow. So there was no pressure- not much I could do with it. Sarah's hair was a mixture of lengths. We had it trimmed in China so she could start fresh growing it out! She let me know right away, even before we could speak the same language that she wanted really long hair! Down to the floor long!

Whenever I fix little Anna's hair she somehow ends up in tears. Whether it actually hurts or she just expecting it to hurt, I'm not sure. It isn't my favorite part of our day but still we do the task! Sarah, on the other hand loves for me to comb her hair- she complains too, but that's part of the fun for her! If I fix her hair it will be redone within 15 minutes. I don't mind, she really is much better at fixing her hair than I am. I guess if I was good at it I would have had Katie all done up right 20 yrs ago!

So yesterday we had a conversation, this is how it went-

MOM- "Oh Anna, we really need to do your hair! We forgot to do it today!" (notice I like to spread the responsibility!)

ANNA- no response

SARAH- "Mom, you forgot to do it yesterday, too!"

MOM- "NOooo, I didn't. I wouldn't do that!" 

SARAH- "Yes Mom, I remember!"

MOM- "YOU must be remembering wrong honey."

SARAH- "No, I remember!" (and then we got an accounting of how it looked yesterday and today)

ANNA- Still no reaction, just happy I'm not combing it now!

MOM- "Now Sarah, I wouldn't forget to do her hair two days in a row." (Hey, I know I avoid things but I wouldn't do that? would I?)

SARAH-  "No mom, I remember. It looked like that yesterday with that big bump on top!"

MOM- feeling slightly inadequate at this point. "Honey, I am sure I brushed her hair yesterday, it has only been one day. And lets be done talking about it." by now Dad is in the room... Certainly don't want him to think I'm not taking good care of the girls and their hair!

Kids are sound asleep, I'm in the shower and I'm thinking "OH crud!! She's right. We had swimming the day before and I didn't comb it before swimming cause it was just going to get messy and wet in the water. And I didn't comb it after swimming... why? Welllll, I didn't want too! She was happy and I didn't want to make her cry!
Okay I know I will need to talk to Sarah about this tomorrow morning and admit I was wrong, ugh.

MOM- "Sarah, You know, you were right. I didn't comb Anna's hair for two days. I'm sorry."

SARAH- "Yaaa, I remembered!" big smile "That's okay it was an oopsy!"

MOM- "Yes, I made a mistake, you were right and I was wrong. It was an oopsy!"

I love the heart and spirit of a child. So easy to forgive and forget. On a positive note maybe she will notice that her Mom is not afraid to apologize when she is wrong. Okay, it took 12 hours but I did apologize!

So, yes, I have combed Anna's hair today! Yes, she did cry, not for long, just enough to send the message- back off lady! Whatever will I do with 4 heads of long black hair? Please start setting your expectations really really low!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Half Way Around the World... In Thought...

The root canal went well- so glad that these two teeth have been dealt with and they won't cause her any more pain. We had a lighter day with school- I figured if she went to public school she'd have at least half or all of the day off. We got through 2 math assignments in the morning and after the procedure we worked on a 500 piece puzzle- she is so good at them! I love puzzles too, so it is a fun, low key thing to do together. (Sarah and Mom put it together- while Anna takes it apart!) At one point I noticed Sarah had drifted off in thought. She had a sad but peaceful look on her face. I wished I could peek inside her sweet little 9 yr old mind and see what she was thinking? Where was she at?  I watched her for awhile then asked her what she was thinking about?

SARAH- "Oh nothing" and she slowly came back to me.

MOM- "Were you thinking about China?"

SARAH- "Yes, I was. I was thinking about my friends and the people in China."

MOM- "Do you miss China?"

SARAH- "Sometimes..." 

We went back to work on the puzzle and then headed to the kitchen for a snack.

MOM- "Sarah, do you sometimes wish you were back in China?"

SARAH- "No, I like it here"

I have asked this question before and the answers vary. This time it was different. There was a quiet confidence in her voice and certainty in her answer. Sarah loves so much about China. She loves the food, the language, the music, the people. But now I think she is realizing that she can love everything about being Chinese and still live in America. It was a small little breakthrough moment.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Root Canal #2

I wonder if this candy jar had anything to do with root canal #2?

We were so hoping that this tooth wold make it BUT it is not to be. It started hurting a couple days ago and we went straight to the dentist. As expected Sarah has been referred to the Endodontist for a root canal on Monday. She is on pain meds and antibiotics to get her through the weekend- poor dear. This will be here second lovely silver crown. She is very proud of her first one I 'm guessing she will be thrilled with this one, too!

We normally don't give the girls candy but with the evening soccer games it has been so helpful. We have no problem getting them to want to come to the games. I know cheering for their brother should be their main focus but come on - let's get real! Sugar can beat that out anytime! 

Ya, know how it says on ALL the referrals that the children brush their teeth twice a day... NOT!
They never brush their teeth, at least not in the orphanage. They may on the foster homes but Anna came to us with decayed teeth, too and she was in foster care. Oh well- teeth can be fixed and there are a million dentists out their ready to fix them! It is our way of adding to the stimulus package!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Clomp, clomp, clomp!

If you are wondering what that noise is at our house it is our girls running around upstairs in their new light up tennis shoes. They are both so excited they can hardly stand it. Honestly, they thanked me so much that you'd thought I given them a much greater gift. I am trying to teach Sarah to walk more gently on her feet but these new shoes are not helping. They just want to see them light up and the harder they stomp the more certain they are to get their reward- the lights!!

Sarah has wanted light up tennis shoes since we met her in China. I was thinking they did not make them in her size so I told her she would probably not be able to get them. I was also thinking that she is 9 and usually 9 yr olds don't wear those kind of tennis shoes. She was so thrilled when she found them- I just couldn't say no plus they were on clearance and were only $10 each- yippee!!

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A fun Sunday with the family!

Our church held a country days celebration last weekend. They used to do this when our older children were little. We always had such a good time but then for many years they did not have it- now it is back and we are so glad it is! We all had lunch while listening to great country music and then we were off to participate in the many activities! The girls wanted to do everything- the parents did the best they could! We left with many prizes! The girls loved it!

Of course we had to watch part of the Viking game (sorry, if you're a Packer fan). Then out on the boat before the nice weather goes away for a very long time! The girls went into the lake this time- it was a first for them! Pools are no problem but the lake was a little scary. They finally were brave enough to give it a try!

It was a wonderful weekend!  Thank you Jesus!

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Keeper of the Dogs!

Hi Girls! Do you want to come in?

Maybe you are thirsty, hot or tired and you want to lay on your comfy bed? Oops, not so fast!

Wait a second, I haven't decided if I'm going to let you in?

It is so fun to be in control !

Friday, September 11, 2009

Being Thankful by Sarah and Anna!

I love doing thankful thursday- even though half the time I do it on Friday!  I thought it would be nice to do it with the girls. Here is what the had to say!

Sarah is thankful - 
for her second grade math and her first grade reading.
for her brothers and sisters!
for her family!
and she prays for her Grandmas and Grandpas who are in heaven with Jesus.

Anna is thankful -
for her soccer ball.
for her snowman picture.
Penny, Missy and Mia (the dogs).
for her sister Sarah!

Can you guess what I am thankful for right now!! Wow, I sure love these two!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Kind of, sort of, Wordless Wednesday!

So what's the pwoblem? I just wanted to fwoss my teeth!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

State Fair!

Watching the dogs do their tricks! The girls love dogs!

Our little farms hands!

Riding the tractor! Anna feels that pedaling is over rated!

Sarah is winning the race! Yes, she is a little competitive!

Sarah and Princess Kay of the Milky Way!

Enjoying some serious ice cream!

Sarah's first ride!!

She loved this ride!

Anna is loving the bumper boats!

It is so fun to bump into your sister!

In Mn the State fair is big! We had a great time! I should have gotten more pics of the girls eating things on sticks! It seems like everything is served on sticks nowadays! 

There were tons of people there- we realized we won't be coming back next year- with 4 little girls we would be sure to lose one- yikes!

We went home with full tummies and sore feet (lots and lots of walking). We were all exhausted when we got home... except for Anna who got to ride in the stroller! Sarah thinks we need to invent a stroller for bigger kids! I agree how about one for adults, too!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

So Sad...

Here is a picture of a happy little girl who just gave her Momma a beautiful flower for Mothers Day!
After 3 months this is what the mother did to the flower... bad Momma!

Obviously I do not have a green thumb- it's dried up and shriveled like the flower... thank goodness I don't care for the children like I care for my flowers! Don't worry - the children are thriving!!

Although I admire all those mom's out there that have beautiful flower and vegetable gardens- I have to come to the realization that I am not one of them. We will not be eating fresh greens from the garden- sorry Sally- you're still my idol- but I just can't seem to do what you do. (Please check my other blog for proof!) I won't be canning, pickling, freezing or whatever else it is that you wonderful crafty people do. Let me just make it clear though- I love that you guys do that- I think it is so cool!

Sorry about your flower Anna! I am happy I kept it alive for 2 of the 3 summer months!