I Lost My Job

I suppose a better title would be “I’ve Completed My Job”.  It looks like baby M will be going home to her Daddy tomorrow.  

As we finished up our foster license Kirk always prayed that God would give us a placement that we’d be able to carry through to the end and reunification with the child’s family.  I secretly, and selfishly, wanted a placement that we’d get to keep.  Well God more than graciously answered Kirk’s selfless prayer over my selfish one.  But in the process He has changed my heart again.  I have spent a little over a month getting to know baby M’s mom and dad.  Mom’s got some things to work on and she’s throwing herself into it believing God has given her another chance to be a mommy.  We pray for her that God would bring healing to her body.  Baby M’s dad hasn’t had a newborn in a long time and is going to be learning a lot in the process.  But I love that I’ve had the privilege of watching him snuggle with her and answering his questions about napping and formula and car seats.  He’s going to make a great daddy.  We are hopeful that we will remain in some sort of contact with baby M and her family as they adjust and will get to be a support to them. 

God is a good God!  Baby M’s dad is constantly thanking us for what we are doing but I feel like it has been such a gift from God to get to do this.  

baby M's blanket

baby M’s blanket

On to the next adventure! …in the meantime we have a new hen laying eggs (5 eggs today) and I’ve started planting the garden.

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Happy Birthday Samster

Yesterday, two years ago, at 1:00ish in the morning Samuel was born.  I was so thankful to have those awful 9 months over with and finally get to hold my baby boy in my arms.  Samuel has been such a HUGE delight to us and it was worth the puking every morning.  We love you Sam.

Talking to Worms

The last few days we’ve had glorious weather so we’ve taken full advantage of it, spending as much time outside as possible.  The kids playing in the yard, wagon, dirt, etc.  I’ve been working on our veggie garden.  We bought some broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower seedlings while in Chattanooga last weekend so I was in a hurry to get the garden ready and get them planted.  We moved one bed over (we’re trying a version of square gardening) so that the lawn mower could fit between it and the fence.  Mixed up the dirt, dug through it for rocks, glass, and other unfriendly debris (filling a large pot with them).  Then mixed in some of our compost that we “made” last year.  Then planted our little seedlings and some lettuce and spinach seeds.  The next day we did a second garden.  This one was more work because it’s new whereas the first one we actually had dug up last fall.  I was thankful to only find one pile of cat poop, not so thankful to find it with my bare hands.

But the greatest memory of it is of Joanna running over to me after I’d watched her put a worm she found in the compost (that’s where they go because as we’ve told her the worms eat the kitchen stuff and newspaper and turn it into dirt).  She came running over to me, “Mommy, I talked to a worm!”  “Oh yea,” I said, “What did you say to it?”  “I told it to eat the egg shells and turn them into dirt.”  It’s been so fun to have her involved in things like this.  She such an inquisitive little girl and has an amazing memory.  Thank you Jesus for Joanna.

Here she is spinning at her Daddy’s concert last night.

Spinning at Daddy's Concert

The Waiting Game

Well, we’ve finished our foster classes (9 weeks of 3 hours each Tuesday night).  We’ve got a month to relax a little and try to get all of our paperwork finished.  And then in April we’ll have two all-day Saturday adoption classes.  Then we’re done, with the easy part.  Then comes waiting.  It’s been brought to our attention several time how hard it might be for us to get a placement in the age-range we feel is right for our family.  This may mean that we have to wait for a long time.  That’s been hard on me emotionally but then I think of some who are dear to me that have had to wait a long time to conceive a child.  It has given me so much more respect for them and their patience in waiting.   We don’t know exactly what the Lord’s will is for us.  How do we know if we need to expand our expectations of “baby number three.”  How do we know if we should stick with the state system to adopt (should we look into private or international)?  God hasn’t written these answers on the wall.

A Dirty “Manger”

Today I read Proverbs 14:4:
Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean,
but abundant crops come by the strength of the ox.

I have translated it into my own version:                                                                “Where there are no fresh baked goods, the kitchen is clean. But abundant yumminess comes by the strength of the cook.”

Today I didn’t have to leave the house at all.  YAY!  The kids and I made Grapenut Muffins.

1. Pour 1 cup boiling water over 1 cup grapenuts. Mix well, cool, stir 1 cup oil in well in grapenuts.

2. Mix 1 1/4 white flour, 1 1/4 wheat flour, 2 1/2 t. baking soda, and    1 t. salt.

3. Beat 2 eggs and 1 cup sugar.  Add dry ingredients.  Stir in 2 cups buttermilk and add 2 cups dry grapenuts (not the ones from step 1).  Mix well.

4. Add grapenut mixture from step 1.

5. Bake 15-20 minutes at 350 in greased muffin pans.

*Batter may be refrigerated for several weeks.

Rainy Shopping Day

Today is Thursday, traditionally my “grocery shopping day.”  Last night I made up my menu for the week and this morning I made up my shopping list.  I typically go to three places to buy my groceries (not including what I get at Sam’s Club or the coffee I get Kirk at World Market).  Today dawned as a wet and dreary day.  We’re trying to be really good about staying within our budget lately so I had $50 to spend today.  I figure I can spend $30 on regular stuff and $20 on produce.  First we hit Aldi with is basically caticorner to our house.  I came out of Aldi spending $16 which included two splurge items (yogurt and string cheese).  Next we went to Schnucks where I get my WIC items ($8 worth of milk, eggs, juice, and peanut butter).  I also spent $15 on other items for meals this week but also buying popcorn (on their 10/$10 sale-I got three), wheat germ for granola, and buttermilk for muffins.  I used the rest of my money to buy ICE CREAM!!!  Breyers was having a buy one get one free deal.  Woohoo!  With $20 left and the rain picking up we decided to go ahead to the semi-outdoor Loop Market to get our produce.  I LOVE this market and the people who work there.  They remember me each week, when I hadn’t come for over a year they still remembered me, and one time when I realized I didn’t have any checks with me they let me pay for my produce the following week.  I LOVE THE LOOP MARKET!  We had enough money to buy the necessities and even grapes and a pumpkin to carve next weekend with Aunti Anna.  The kids love going to the market because they get to help pick out produce and even get some for free sometimes.  They get to run around and play.  Today was a blast because they got to play in the pumpkins, the puddles, and the water streaming off the roof.  They came home soaked and super happy.

I was a little nervous about finding new places to shop when we moved to our new house.  I used to do all of my shopping at Shop-N-Save but now it’s not worth the drive.  But I’ve come to really like my Aldi.  I felt a bit intimidated usually being the only white person there but when you go to the same place every week you start to recognize people.  I shopped last week by myself and my cashier asked me where my babies were.  I’ve also really like the Schnucks I go to (on Union), recognizing people who work there.  And everyone seems so friendly.  So as much as I don’t like menu planning or grocery shopping, it’s become a pleasant experience.