January 25, 2007

And we're off........

It is T-3 hours until Paul picks me up from work and we head to Galveston to take our cruise.

I forgot to mention one interesting development; because we got such an awesome deal we could not help but brag to our families. Paul's parents and grandparents (who have never been on a cruise before) decided they had to join us since it was dirt cheap. So now the last minute cruise has turned into a "family affair".

We are so excited and look forward to 4 days of rest and relaxation.

There won't be any updates from me the next few days but I am sure I will have tons of stories to tell when we get back.

Hope everyone has a fabulous weekend!!

January 23, 2007

Better late than never......

Okay, so I know I am a little behind but the last few days have been CRAZY!! So grab a drink, sit back, and enjoy the life of Paul and Robyn.

Let me start with last Thursday and I will bring you up to date.

Thursday-After working Wednesday night, I slept half the day and then traveled to Kelby's basketball game. They won 41-23!!!! I then went to run some errands and made it home at 8pm and then spent the next 4 hours digital scrapbooking. I am a woman obsessed!! I am really getting the hang of this digital thing and even though I will not give up paper scrapping all together, my focus is digital right now. I will try to do a slide show in the near future to show off some of my work!
Kelby getting ready to pass the ball. Great game Kelby!!

Friday-Paul's birthday!! He had to work both Thursday night and Friday night so we did not see each other much that day. Due to the crazy weather last weekend we had to reschedule our monthly M3 gathering. We met at Erin's and laughed so much our sides are still sore. Kelley and I arrived a little after 5pm with Jamie and Christie not far behind. We wound up leaving Erin's at 2AM!!!!! You would think that since we get together every few weeks we would not have to have marathon nights together but we still do it anyway. The funniest thing is that even after spending all that time together the emails started flowing the very next day "when are getting together again?" This group of ladies is so great and we have such a good time laughing, talking, and just being!! I feel really blessed to know all of them and have them a part of my life!!
My M3 crew:
Valerie was unable to join us tonight, but don't worry she was there in spirit!!

Saturday - As much as I would have loved to have slept the day away (I did get more sleep than Kelley), Kolin had a basketball game that we had to attend. The game location was about an hour away so I took advantage of Paul's driving and had me a little nap on the way there. Even though they lost, it was a good game a good effort by the team.
Kolin guarding an opponent during a free throw.
He is serious about his basketball!

Saturday afternoon I had an appt to get a haircut and then Paul and I planned on going out to eat to celebrate his birthday. As I was sitting in the stylist chair I received an SOS phone call from Christie's husband Anton. Christie's dad (who lives in California) had become ill that afternoon and was on his way to the hospital. Christie was beside herself with worry and Anton unfortunately had a prior committment he could not get out of. He did not want to leave Christie at home alone so he called me. Paul and I became went to her house and hung out with her while Anton was gone and she was recieving periodic updates from her family. We wound up convincing her to go eat with us (after all a girl's got to eat) and then we all took a little field trip to the new fancy Wal-Mart that had just opened close to her home. Because of the wonderful technology of cell phones Christie could still be in touch with her family in CA while running around with us. We figured it beat sitting around the house worrying and waiting for the next phone call. After Anton came back home he introduced Paul to the new Wii game system. Paul and Anton played for about 2 hours while Christie and I gave my blog a make-over. Christie left Sunday morning to go California to be with her family and they continue to be in our prayers.

Sunday-Was back to work but not before having dinner at my mom and dad's to celebrate Kelby, Paul, and Danette's birthday. All 3 birthdays are within 2 weeks of each other so my mom always has a joint dinner for them. We had a wonderful meal and an adorable cake.
The January birthday crew:
Notice Kolin trying to push Kelby's head, don't ya just envy that brotherly love???

I just had to throw in a picture of the cake:
My mom made it and it was too cute!!!!

As I was getting ready for work Sunday night, I could not resist snapping a picture of my two guys!!!


I think that brings you up to date, probably more than you wanted to know about our crazy life!!

I have two special prayer requests: one for Christie and her family as they cope with her dad's illness, he is getting a little better but still has a ways to go. The other is for one of my co-workers Helen, 2 of her family members were killed in a tragic auto accident this weekend and the family is in shock. Please remember both these families in your prayers!!

Thanks for checking in!!

January 21, 2007

Happy (Belated) Birthday to my Wonderful Husband!!!

I know this birthday wish is a couple of days late. Paul's birthday was actually Friday the 19th, but we had a super busy weekend. I just wanted to relay to my husband how special he is and how much he means to me. I LOVE YOU BABE!!!

I am working on a super long post to catch everyone up, so just bare with me and hopefully I can have it done in the next day or two.

I am also trying out a new look (thanks to Christie), it is still a work-in-progress so let me know what you think!!

January 17, 2007

Another duck bites the dust....

This past weekend an ice storm hit our area. The temperatures dropped, everything froze over, and we were housebound for a day. That was not the major drama in our house: the major drama was the demise of another duck.

Rowdy's favorite toy is a squeaky duck that is very loud and obnoxious. He likes to pick the duck up by the tail and then violently shake his head from side to side to make the loudest noise. Eventually after alot of play the tail detaches from the body. This DOES NOT make Rowdy happy because even though the duck will still squeak it is not nearly as exciting or loud. After we bought him his first duck last summer (and subsequently the tail came off), we discovered that this is not a particularly easy toy to find. We have tried others squeak toys but he doesn't like anything as much as he like the duck. When we finally found a replacement duck several months ago I did what any "good parent" would do: I bought several and put them away. When the duck tragedy occurred this weekend. Rowdy picked up the broken tail and looked at me with sad eyes so I immediately got out a replacement for him. See, it is the little things in life that make you happy.

The tailless duck with his brand new counterpart.

Okay so enough about squeaky dog toys on to the rest of the weekend:

Saturday as the weather was getting bad we celebrated at Kelby's birthday party. He had a joint party with one of his classmates whose birthday is the day before his. The party was a held at a local restaurant and included dancing, a deejay, and of course birthday cake. They had a wonderful turn-out and there was alot of movin and groovin' going on.

Kolin even got into the act and did some breakdancing for the crowd.

They had fast songs, slow songs, country, rap, rock, and everything in between. Yes, I was the obnoxious aunt running around talking pictures (even during the slow dances).

The attendees of the party. That is alot of 12-13 year old hormones floating around!!!

After the party we were supposed to have a girls M3 night at Erin's but because of the weather we had to postpone. Huge Bummer!!!! Instead Paul and I went home and cleaned house, it was a very exiting Saturday night!!

Sunday was still cold and there was still ice on the ground but the roads were fine so we ventured out. We went to the movies and saw We are Marshall (highly recommend) and then did a little shopping at Sam's. I think there were a total of 5 other people shopping in the store. We came home put on our flannel pj's and then settled in for the night.

Monday began another work week and all the the normal stuff that goes with it.

Hope everyone is keeping warm and thanks for checking in!!

January 16, 2007

HAPPY BIRTHDAY KELBY!!!






Wow!!! It is hard to believe that you are 13 years old today. You are officially a teenager!! I can remember the day you were born, I was so excited to become and aunt. You have brought such joy to our family. I can't wait for Avery to meet her cousin Kelby, I know you will be a good protector for her.

Paul and I wish you a wonderful birthday and just think: only 3 more years until you can drive!!!!

January 12, 2007

Life Lessons:

Twelve years ago today, January 12th, 1995 was a day that my life was forever changed. That morning on the way to work I was involved in a very serious car accident. I was hit almost head-on by an 81 year old man who failed to yield as I was crossing over to enter the highway. I wound up with 2 broken legs, a couple of scratches and bruising both internally and externally. I was wheelchair bound for 1 year and it was exactly 9 months after the wreck that I stood erect for the first time.

Every year at this time I think of that accident and the lessons I learned from it:

*there are angels everywhere - immediately after the wreck a passer-by stopped and sat outside my car talking to me until the paramedics arrived. I was fully conscious the whole time and knew "something" was wrong but had no idea the extent of my injuries. This man (whose name I never knew) kept me calm, prayed with me, and did everything possible to keep my mind occupied so I would not focus on the injuries

*we are blessed to have an awesome network of family and friends - I believe I had the largest crowd present in the waiting room, not only as I was awaiting surgery but even during the marathon 8 hour surgery that day to repair my legs. I had such a constant stream of visitors and phone calls while I was in ICU that eventually the nurses had to tell Paul that he needed to tell people to stop calling. I was hospitalized for 7 days and we kept logs of all my visitors and the number exceeded 50. I also had enough flowers and plants to open my own florist shop.

*don't ever take the simple things in life for granted - everyday tasks that are second nature to us like washing your hair, getting dressed, brushing your teeth, and going to the bathroom are very complicated when you are confined to a hospital bed 24 hrs a day

*attitude is key whenever we face adversity in life - the thought never crossed my mind that I would not walk again, even after several complications and my own body's inability to regrow the bones

*everyone needs a little humbling now and then - one day I was a 21 year old thinking I was invincible and the next I was confined to a hospital bed in my parent's living room wearing Depends undergarments. My family had to perform even the most basic tasks for me and I never heard a complaint out of any of them. I distinctly remember my mom coming home from work in the afternoon and filling up 5 gallon buckets with water so that we could wash my hair while I leaned my head off the side of the bed.

*when Paul said "in sickness and in health" he REALLY meant it - your parents are your parents and you know that they will always be there for you but Paul's and my marriage was severely tested pretty quickly and he never faltered in his love, compassion, and care for me even when I took out my frustrations out on him.

These are just a few of the several hundred lessons I learned during my recovery period. I wound up having 5 surgeries on my legs and still have a rod and a plate in one. I can walk, I can run (it ain't pretty), and when I am especially tired I have one heck of a limp but I don't complain because you know what: I CAN WALK!!!

I became a nurse a few years after this life lesson and I can truly say that I have a certain compassion for my patients that cannot be taught in any book but is learned when you go through it. To this day I still use some of my own creative ways of maneuvering in a wheelchair with my patients and they never fail to ask "how did you figure out to do it like that?"

My mother always says "Everything Happens for a Reason" and "God doesn't give you more than you can handle". It has taken me a while to realize how true those phrases are. I learned patience, compassion, humility, perseverance, dedication, and the love of family during my recovery, and even though they were hard lessons I can truly say I am a better person because of this experience.

So the moral of the story is: Live life to fullest, don't take anything for granted, and always be kind ('cause you never know who may be putting you on the bedpan)!!!

January 11, 2007

Out with '06 in with '07!!!

I know I am officially a little late but but it has take me a while to get my thoughts together regarding the past year and the upcoming year. 2006 was definitely a roller-coaster year for us. Not just the kind of roller-coaster that goes up a few times and down a few times, but one of those that has loops, corkscrews, and total edge of your seat anticipation. We started the year with high hopes of bringing our daughter home. We had some low points this year but we also had a ton of high points too!

So even though we were glad to say good-bye to 2006 we can look back at that year as a lesson in patience, appreciation for family and friends, and another step closer to bringing our daughter home.

As for 2007 I have already made a huge change: I have become spontaneous!! I have always been a "planner" I think things out, weigh the pros and cons, and analyze things down to the smallest detail. Well, that was all thrown out the window last night!!

Paul and I have had several conversations lately about having a weekend get-away. We need some time for us, away from the everyday stresses of life, away from my addiction to blogs and searching for any tiny little piece of info related to the adoption process. Just some time to be together with no worries, no schedules, and rest & relaxation. So last night after literally no planning, I booked us a cruise!!! This is a monumental event for me because in the past I would never plan a trip without searching for the best deal for hours, making sure schedules coincide, and weighing every option available. I happened to come across a great deal on the web so 2 weeks from today (yes, just 2 weeks) we will set sail for a 4 night cruise!!

We have a busy weekend planned with Kelby's birthday party, Kolin's basketball game, and for me a night with the girls. So be sure and check back on Sunday because I am sure I will have a huge update for you.

Thanks for checking in, hope everyone is having a great week!!

January 4, 2007

September 27th

The stork landed today and referrals were received for those logged in between Sept 9th and Sept 27th. We would have really liked to have seen the rest of September referred but in my humble opinion 18 days is pretty good. If you remember several months ago there were months when only 5 days were referred so we will take 18.

Congratulations to all the newly expanded families. I love seeing all your precious babies and dream of being able to post my own "We have a daughter" entry.

Only 84 days left between the last date referred and our log in date of Dec 20!!!

January 3, 2007

Bringing in the New Year...Part 2

Okay here we go with round 2 of pictures of us welcoming 2007:

We played a marathon game of Cranium. It was the first time Paul and I had ever played that game. It was a hoot watching everyone have to act out different tasks. Paul and I were the big losers of the game (everyone else made it to the final circle) but we had kind of mentally "checked out" after about 2 hrs playing.

Mollianne was a little social butterfly all night. Of course everyone loaded her down with attention:
Paul and Mollianne (I just know Paul is going to make a wonderful Daddy)

While playing Cranium there are several times that you must use your partner to act out certain clues:
Christie uses Anton as her "human puppet" to try to get him to guess the right answer.

Valerie and Gary perform the same sort of task:
I think this was right after Valerie "belly flopped" into a chair!!

Bob and Erin celebrate after getting a correct answer:
Hey guys, no kissing until midnight!!

Mollianne is ready to toast in the New Year!!
Don't worry all you parents out there it is just sparkling apple cider!!

Christie and Anton welcome 2007...
Future parents of Keira Joy!!!

Me and Paul ready to say good-bye to 2006...
Future parents of Avery Kristine!!

Bob, Erin, and Mollianne are ready to expand their family in 07...
Future family of Meisey Faith!!

Gary and Valerie anxiously await their daughter...

Future parents of Aubrianna Rose!!

A wonderful time was had by all and we certainly missed those who were not there to celebrate with us.

Welcome 2007....Let's get our babies home!!!!

Bringing in the New Year!!

After returning from an action-packed celebration in Oklahoma we came home, unloaded the car, and headed over to Erin and Bob's to celebrate New Years Eve with some of our closest friends. As usual when we get together there was tons of laughter, tons of food, and tons of memories that will forever be treasured.

I know my posse out there is anxiously awaiting pictures so here we go:

Bob looks so sophisticated with his wine and I sure we are having some intelligent conversation.....

but it kind of ruins the sophisticated look when you use the ice chest as a chair!!

Christie singing and laughing to the tune that.....
plays only in HER head!!

The most adorable picture of Gary and Valerie....
see Gary she DOES act like she likes you sometimes!!

Mollianne challenged Anton to a game of air hockey...
she assured me that if you hold one leg up you play much better.

Valerie wore these beautiful beaded shoes in....
and then promptly took them off, sometimes you can't sacrifice comfort for fashion.

The gals:
Christie, Erin, Mollianne, me, and Valerie

The guys:
Gary, Anton, Paul, and Bob (holding Mollianne)

We are definitely ready for the Rockettes.....
but are they ready for us????

Stay tuned for even more pictures of our New Years Eve Celebration.

January 2, 2007

Grammy's Christmas....

This past weekend Paul and I went to Oklahoma for an overnight visit to celebrate Christmas with his mom's side of the family. Grammy and Daddy Sonny always celebrate the Saturday after Christmas so that no one has to be rushing off to make another event. We arrived Saturday around lunch and spent the afternoon visiting and catching up.

Later that evening we all went over to the local "dance hall" to do some boot scootin'. Grammy and Daddy Sonny usually attend dances 3-4 times per week. Whenever we are with them we always look forward to going. I have to say it is great exercise. It is a family atmosphere with no smoking, no alcohol, a live band, and even a concession stand with popcorn and nachos. The best bargain is that you can buy a bottomless pitcher of ice water for your table for only $1. Try to beat that anywhere else!!

Sunday morning we all got up and accompanied Grammy and Daddy Sonny to church and then came back to their house for lunch and to watch the Cowboy game. One of Paul's aunts had jewelry making supplies and I made a beautiful bracelet with Avery's name on it. I will try to take a picture and post it later on.

Now for the pics from Grammy's Christmas celebration:

Daddy Sonny relaxing while his house was being overtaken by all of us.

Boys will be boys:Three grown men had the time of their life shooting at each other with these foam disk guns.
Todd, Uncle Larry, and Paul get ready for battle.

I told you it was a bargain:
Larry shows off our "bottomless" pitcher and we even got free cups!!

Everyone did a little dancing tonight:
Todd dancing with Grammy with Larry and Kay in the background.

We closed the place down (it was only 10pm)!! Our group at Pacesetters.

We had a wonderful time and can't wait to do it again!!